Monday, February 8, 2010

Good Morning Arkansas, Feb. 8, 2010. Here's a Piece of My Mind.

We didn't get smacked like the northern plains and the east coast, but we did wake up to about 3 - 4 inches of snow on ground with a little more on the way. This afternoon, we were supposed to have rain/sleet, but at 11:00am this morning, we have this...

Big flakes and working on a couple more inches of snow. Go figure.

But, tomorrow morning, after the snow has had a chance to melt a little and refreeze overnight, we will have treacherously icy roads. Fun, fun, fun.

I subscribe to too many blogs and my Google reader is always overflowing. I clean it out, then the next thing I know I have 15 posts, then 30, then 50, then 100, and I start the clean out process over again.

I know there is a better way. One would be to unsubscribe to the blogs I generally don't read. Unfortunately, I have blog hoarder tendencies, so making that transition is tough.

One of the blogs I always read is This is Reverb. Ryan is an amazing photographer and I love reading his descriptions of his photos. He also cooks, volunteers, works as a pastor, and is married with two young children. His photographs of his wife, children and friends are taken with a loving eye and the love is translated into the photo.

This morning, Ryan's post was titled simply, "Religion...", in which Ryan addresses a distinction between God and religion. Although I found the entire post insightful and perceptive, I think the centerpiece of the post is most noteworthy...

"Religion says, You need to go to church every weekend and on Wednesday night too.
Jesus says, You are the church and wherever you go, I am with you always.

Religion says, You must give at least 10% of your income to church because God needs your money.
Jesus says, I want 100% of your heart and sometimes a portion of that heart lives in your wallet.

Religion says, You need to get yourself cleaned up and put on your Sunday best for God!
Jesus says, God has seen you on the toilet and much worse than that - no need for a show.

Religion says, You don’t have enough faith - you haven’t done enough works - you’ll never be enough.
Jesus says, I am the King of Kings and you are my son or daughter. You are Royalty and that’s plenty."

It really made me think this morning.

"So, how’s that hopey changey thing workin' out for ya?" ~ Sarah Palin. I don't agree with her politics. I'm not sure that she even offers an ideological point of view. She speaks merely in sound bytes and quotable quotes that are politically and socially about as far right as one can get, and in doing so verbalizes (and stokes) the anger and frustration that exists within a small percentage of our country. I think I can safely say she will never be President. She appears unable to articulate a single policy or solution so she will never rise to the level of a serious candidate. What she can do and does very well is represent what is wrong with both sides of the political fence ~ mockery, ridicule, contempt for the opposing view. After Sarah Palin mocked the President and those who voted for him for the "hopey, changey thing", Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC felt compelled to mock Sarah Palin for having notes written in the palm of her hand during her speech. There is an old adage, Never wrestle with a pig. You both get dirty, but the pig likes it." Have we all become so willing to engage in the same ugly exchanges and accusations that we dislike so much in the other side? Have we all become pigs?

Our society has definitely changed and here's another example I saw on CBS Sunday Morning. Robert Lipsyte did a report in which he claims "In Many Ways, the Super Bowl, like the Presidential Election, Reflects the National Pulse". Mr. Lipsyte sat with 4 college students, showed them some old commercials and some new ones and solicited their response. None was more striking to me than their reaction to these two Coca Cola commercials.

The first one was done in 1979...

And the second, more recent remake...sort of...

Guess which one the college students preferred? Yep, the second more aggressive, sarcastic and callous parody of the Mean Joe Green commercial.

Perhaps I'm overstating it, but I am seriously concerned about the direction of this country because of the lack of appreciation for sensitivity, vulnerability, understanding and respect.

I'll get off my soap box now...

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