How did such a little guy grow into a lion?
And My Girlfriend, Tuesday Weld
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly...
Blest is the man who goes where evil reigns
And raises there his voice for righteousness;
Who, unabashed, the lawless ones arraigns,
And, unafraid, plucks at their consciences.
Blest is the man who, in times of decay,
When even boldest spirits are all cowed,
Will with his cries arouse the slumbering crowd
And then before their eyes the truth display.
Treason In The Defense Of Bigotry Is No Vice
Dying on Asshole Hill:
A Kentucky clerk's office on Thursday again refused to issue a marriage license to a gay couple, in defiance of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage across the country two months ago.
The action Thursday came just a day after a federal appeals court upheld a ruling ordering the clerk in rural Rowan County to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
U.S. District Judge David Bunning had already ordered Davis to issue marriage licenses two weeks ago. He later delayed that ruling until Aug. 31 or until the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling. The appeals court did so on Wednesday, denying Davis' appeal.
Mat Staver, an attorney for Davis, said he was disappointed with the ruling. He said he plans to discuss options with Davis, including an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
It's unclear how Davis would react if she were to ultimately lose her appeals. She testified in federal court last month she would "deal with that when the time comes." Saturday, she spoke to thousands of supporters at a religious freedom rally at the state capitol, saying: "I need your prayers ... to continue to stand firm in what we believe."
"Regardless of what any man puts on a piece of paper, the law of nature is not going to change," Davis told the crowd.
Davis has said she will not resign. She can only be removed from office if the state legislature impeaches her, which is unlikely. If she continues to defy a federal court order, a judge could hold her in contempt and order hefty fines or jail time.
"Certainly none of those are appealing to my client," Staver said. "No one wants to be fined or go to jail and she's always been a law-abiding citizen. She's just caught in a very difficult situation."
She's always been a law-abiding citizen...'cept for, you know, this law.
We All Live (And Die) Politics
To discuss society, its ills, and how to address them (or not) through policy is politics. To cry about "politicizing" anything is to cry about breathing.
A Whole New School Adventure
Taken by Principal Dodge yesterday.
Just as every cop is a criminal..
Laughter roared like thunder through the plains of heaven
Izanamigave birth to rocks, trees, rivers, mountains, grassand last, a blazing childso burned she died.In the land of darknessa mass of pollution.Ah wash her clear stream—skinny little girl with big earswe have passed throughpassed through, flesh out of flesh.
The Meat And Potatoes Of Music
Who am I but a teeth-grinder?
If it isn't too latelet me waste one day awayfrom my history.Let me see withoutlooking insideat broken glass.
Because The Gay Agenda Is All About Discrimination
Equal discrimination under the law, bitches!
CRUZ: Imagine if this were inverted. Imagine if there were a gay florist — now I know that’s hard to imagine, a gay florist — but just go with the hypo[thetical] for a second. Imagine if two evangelical Christians came to a gay florist and they wanted to get married, and the florist said, “You know what? I disagree with your faith. I have problems with your faith.” You have no entitlement to force that florist to provide flowers at the Christians’ wedding. We are a pluralistic nation that tolerates diversity.
I think most people just want to smell the flowers and not go out of their way to be dicks to each other.
But hahaha, gay florist! And he's still wrong: those unimaginable gay florists should not discriminate in the public sphere, either. Joke's on you, asshole.
Saturn, August 1981.
Neptune, August 1989.
Thanks for the memories, Voyager 2!
According to Vermont in the Civil War, John Crown of Swanton enlisted on September 12, 1861, was mustered in with everybody else on the 16th, and discharged with disability the following year on March 2 (dying in 1863). His discharge came during the 5th Vermont's time with Smith's Division at the Camp Griffin Defences around Washington, just before they moved to Alexandria.
I can't find any more biographical information on Private Crown, but I'm guessing he was done in by disease:
To most observers, hearty Vermont boys averaging five feet ten inches in height with standard bearers six feet six inches and six feet eight inches, boys hardened by the rigors of hill farm life, seemed unlikely victims of disease. Yet a January 28, 1862, report from the Surgeon General of the Army told a different story: "The Vermont regiments in Brooks' brigade give us the largest ratio of sick of all the troops in the army, and that ratio has not essentially varied for the last three months..."
During these early months of the war the sickness in most other units in the army seemed comparatively insignificant to the experience of the Vermont Brigade. In November, for instance, Charles TripIer, Surgeon General and Medical Director of the Army of the Potomac, reported that "12 Massachusetts regiments averaged 50 sick each [,] Pennsylvania regiments averaged 61 sick each [and] 5 Vermont regiments averaged 144 sick each."
The frequency with which TripIer communicated with the high command about the "disease ridden Vermont brigade" underscored the urgent desire at the highest levels for answers and solutions. They wanted to know why the number of sick in the Vermont Brigade was higher than the number in any other unit. They had sufficient clothing, TripIer reported, and according to a hospital inspector, the police of all the regiments was satisfactory, as was the condition of their tents. The locations of the camps of the Fifth and Sixth Vermont presented drainage problems, but so did the Third's; and that regiment had the fewest number of sick in the brigade-eighty-four in January. The Surgeon-General had few answers; for the most part, the origins of the sickness in the Vermont Brigade would remain an unfathomable mystery.
The diseases which crippled regiments and bewildered and frustrated the high command consisted of two broad kinds: childhood diseases (measles, mumps, chicken pox, and whooping cough) and camp diseases (diarrhea, dysentery, malaria, typhoid fever, and respiratory tract infections). The infectious diseases of childhood struck first. In the state camps of assembly and in the central training camps where large numbers of disease-susceptible recruits assembled, the childhood diseases-especially measles-often infected as many as thirty percent of the members of a regiment...
When, in December, 1861, Dr. Phelps made his report on the condition of Vermont soldiers at Camp Griffin, the number of cases of measles was decreasing. By this time the problems were the camp diseases, which Phelps identified as remittent and intermittent fevers (malaria), typhoid, pneumonia, and diarrhea. Because of its unusually high number of victims and high mortality rate and the susceptibility of its victims to relapses and repeated attacks, diarrhea, or the organisms which caused it, became the army's most troubling disease.
Hadn't even met the enemy yet, but were dropping like flies.
Quiet, Too Quiet
Sam demanded to see if the General Store had reopened yet. Not until next week, reportedly.
Then the boy wanted to visit the big cemetery to take some pictures. So much like his daddy.
This is the stone I was hunting for. More on John Crown in a bit.
Sam naturally noticed a stone with a Samuel. This lady was born before Vermont joined the Union.
The school before all hell breaks loose tomorrow. I can't wait.
The Dreaded International Chinese Communist Conspiracy
Convenient Instruction Of Youth
With Samuel's first day of kindergarten tomorrow (Sadie's pre-k career starts next week), I have thoughts of Vermont's commitment to education rumbling anew in my brain. Consider this excerpt from A History of Fletcher Vermont:
The Beers Franklin County Atlas (1871) [ed note: look here!] shows ten districts with a school in each. For reasons unknown, there is no District 10, but there is District 11 in the northeast part of town...The buildings were so spaced throughout the town that no child, theoretically, would need to walk more than two miles to school, one way...Consolidation of schools gradually took place from the early 1930s, the Great Depression, through the next three decades until the new school was constructed ¼ mile south of Binghamville in 1962.
That "new" building is still operating today, with some addition and modification. Voters rejected a district consolidation plan about 4 years ago, and last year rejected a bond for another expansion. So there are significant space issues, but nothing like what some schools have to deal with.
Anyway, from the beginning of our Republic, education has been extremely important, as Ira Allen noted in his History of Vermont:
The greatest legislators from Lycurgus down to John Lock, have laid down a moral and scientific system of education as the very foundation and cement of a State ; the Yermontese are sensible of this, and for this purpose they have planted several public schools, and have established a university, and endowed it with funds, and academic rewards, to draw forth and foster talents.
It should come as no surprise that this is codified in our constitution:
Section 68: [A] competent number of schools ought to be maintained in each town unless the general assembly permits other provisions for the convenient instruction of youth.
Talk about convenient! I fully expect both Sam and Sadie to attend the same facilities--walking through our woods with their friends--until they graduate from 6th grade and move on to other area schools.
Up Against The Wall Motherfucker
Know this: in some way you’re already dead.
You are invulnerable. Didn’t they deliver
(those forces that control your destiny)
the certainty of dust? Couldn’t it be
your irreversible time is that river
in whose bright mirror Heraclitus read
his brevity? A marble slab is saved
for you, one you won’t read, already graved
with city, epitaph, dates of the dead.
And other men are also dreams of time,
not hardened bronze, purified gold. They’re dust
like you; the universe is Proteus.
Shadow, you’ll travel to what waits ahead,
the fatal shadow waiting at the rim...
Jorge Luis Borges.
Intersections And Such
Sadie says goodbye to C&C on Friday.
Show me love!
From 104a on Saturday.
Now on 104.
Driving through the Intersection.
eight, eight, I forget what eight was for
To let the beautiful night be canopied over my tomorrow.
She stood before the sun, screaming:
'Sun! You are like my rebellious heart
Whose youth swept life away
And whose ever-renewed light
Gave the stars to drink.
Careful! Do not let a bewildered sadness
Or a sighing tear in my eyes deceive you.
For sadness is the form of my revolt and my resistance
Beneath the night—divinity be my witness! '
Before Apollo 8
The first earthrise:
[O]n 23 August 1966, Lunar Orbiter 1 snapped the first photo of Earth as seen from lunar orbit (Larger view). While a remarkable image at the time, the full resolution of the image was never retrieved from the data stored from the mission. In 2008, this earthrise image was restored by the Lunar Orbiter Image Recovery Project at NASA Ames Research Center. We obtained the original data tapes from the mission (the last surviving set) and restored original FR-900 tape drives to operational condition using both 60s era parts and modern electronics.
What a tantalizing hint of what was to come in a few short years...
Reach Out In The Darkness
the days go by, and the lilacs die
There's a place I know where the birds swing low,And wayward vines go roaming,Where the lilacs nod, and a marble godIs pale, in scented gloaming.And at sunset there comes a lady fairWhose eyes are deep with yearning.By an old, old gate does the lady waitHer own true love's returning.
Even When You Lose You Can Win
If you're fighting for a fundamental idea instead of specific policy, you can still push the nut forward even when losing a particular fight. That's what Bernie did in the 80s. And what I think #BLM is accomplishing now.
Show of the Week
Our universe's yet shattered mysteries fear the astrophysicist.
Name one revolution whose inception was unlike a fist.Factions disparate, then tucked together—coiled like a fist.Foreign policies are symbol languages—idiomatic, cryptic.In America, nothing says "We desire peace" like a fist.
Friends At War
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I; send me!”
The other day on Facebook I shared something from Friends Journal wherein they inquired as to what themes readers might be interested in. I mused about why some Quakers go to war and how their Meetings deal with it.
Today this post from a few weeks ago popped up:
As I engaged more deeply with the gospels and discovered more about the witness of peacemakers like John Woolman, Henry David Thoreau, Daniel Berrigan, Mohandas Gandhi, and Martin Luther King Jr., the latent longing for peace awakened within me. My conviction grew that Jesus really meant what he said on the Sermon on the Mount and the spirit of Christ has continually called the Friends and saints of God to realize the possibilities of peace on earth. I began to speak more openly about this conviction. But the stronger my convincement became, the harder it was to know how to respectfully relate to my friends and family who were service members.
It was at my current meeting that I began to understand how real this tension is within service members and veterans themselves. During a conversation, a member of our meeting who is a Vietnam veteran told me about his struggle to find a church that could “speak to his condition.” One of his most telling statements helped me see what Friendly work may be needed with veterans: “It felt like [to the churches I visited] I was either a monster or a hero.” This connected with my experience of many churches, including Quaker meetings. Too often, meetings have trouble distinguishing the wars they oppose from the men and women who are asked to fight them, seeing them as monsters. Other churches want to honor the service of veterans and their willingness to “lay down one’s life for their friends” (John 15:13) and can only relate to them as heroes. Neither of these extreme labels fits the experience of most veterans. Veterans are like most other folks in that they have mixed emotions about their life choices and experiences. They carry a mix of pride and shame, joy and regret. Veterans need Quaker meetings that are able to navigate a “third way” beyond the labels of monster and hero and create a hospitable space where they can attend to the leading of the Light. They need a safe space where their wounds can be healed, their stories can be heard, and their gifts can be shared.
There is new language that helps us understand the spiritual and psychological trauma faced by so many veterans. We not only hear about post-traumatic stress, traumatic brain injury, and military sexual trauma, we are now hearing about moral injury. Moral injury happens when there is a deep violation of one’s conscience and moral center. The violence and trauma becomes internalized within the service member, and there is a need for healing and cleansing. Many ancient cultures had rituals and healers who were practiced at integrating warriors back into the community, but those communal structures have largely broken down. Perhaps this is a unique invitation and opportunity for Friends. We do not believe in war; we oppose war and want to end it. But we do believe in peace, and if we want to be faithful to that testimony, we must address violence in all its forms: external violence between groups and nations and internal violence within those who experience the trauma of war. The realities of moral injury call us to a ministry of soul repair. Perhaps this is the “third way” to which we are being led.