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December 5, 2018

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C-8 Wednesday, December 5, 2018 The Press-Dispatch OPINION Submit Letters to the Editor: Letters must be signed and received by noon on Mondays. Email: or bring in a hard copy: 820 E. Poplar Street, Petersburg Phone smarts My Point of View by Dr. H. K. Fenol, Jr., M.D. Since I use my smart phone a lot, and I mean a lot just like every- body else does, I thought I'd share an article I about Best Practices on charging smart phone batter- ies. Here's what I picked up which I think is worth sharing. Now, I have to put a disclaimer. I do not claim to be an expert in this matter, so if you want more details on this subject, talk to your smart phone certified provider and they can give you expert advice. Now at my level, here's what I think makes sense to me. 1. Unless your device has some serious manufacturing defect (like Samsung Note 7 bursting in- to flames noted a couple of years ago) the fire in your pocket or on the nightstand is unlikely to hap- pen. 2. Experts agree that smart phones are smart enough that they do not let an overload happen. Ex- tra protection chips inside the de- vice make sure that does not hap- pen in a tablet or smartphone or laptop. Once the internal lithium- ion battery hits 100 percent of it's charging capacity, charging stops. That usually happens within an hour or two. 3. You may plug-in the phone when you sleep. If you wake up sometime during the night, unplug it to prevent constant trickle charg- ing. Or better, plug your phone in- to a smart home outlet (you can search about this subject) that you put on schedule so it turns off. 4 .Best not to charge your phone while it's in a case, or have some stack of books or papers on top, or The season of Advent is centered upon the weeks before Christmas, which is heralded as the birth of the long await Christ child. There is some debate that his birth was in the early winter, but at this junc- ture in time it is irrelevant. The observance of Advent in the early winter can be traced to around the fourth century AD and was first observed in areas of Spain and France, but the exact date is not known; the faithful were encouraged to attend church dai- ly between December 17 and 29. By the sixth century, December 25 began to be observed as the day of Christ's birth. The early church celebrated a double meaning to the season of Advent. The Latin word adven- tus, where English derives the word Advent is a translation of the Greek word parousia—a word that is used for Christ's birth and His Second Coming. Therefore, for the first two weeks of Advent Christ's Second Coming was emphasized, with the last weeks the cel- ebration was focused on Christ's birth. The symbolism is apparent and over- powering; Advent is not just about the com- ing birth of Jesus, but also about everything since the birth of Je- sus. However, this dual meaning is not what is celebrated today during Advent; today, the church concentrates on Christ's coming birth. When and why the Second Coming disappeared is de- bated, but what is known is from around the 13th century onward Christ's birth was a part of the Christian calendar. The church does not hold fast to which items are used to cele- brate Advent. Determining when specific Advent items were added is unclear. What can be substanti- ated is by the end of the 19th cen- tury the color purple, the wreath, the ever- green tree, the holly and ivy, and the Na- tivity were part of the celebration of Advent. The symbolism of the items used during Ad- vent is rich in connect- ing to the birth of the Christ child. Advent writers con- nect the use of the Holly and the Ivy to the words of the prophet Isa- iah, who writes repeatedly of the suffering savior who would save the people from their sins by His death on the cross. The holly and ivy are considered signs of Christ's passion. Their prickly leaves sug- gest the crown of thorns, the red berries the blood of the Savior, and the bitter bark the drink of- fered to Jesus on the cross. Often, Points to Ponder by Rev. Ford Bond Advent, a time for joy Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 The Weekly by Jill Heuring Put the lime in the Coke-o-nut Minority View by Walter E. Williams Black education: What makes sense? Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 What do you think of the prop- osition that no black youngsters should be saved from education- al rot until all can be saved? Black people cannot afford to accept such a proposition. Actions by the educa- tion establishment, black and white liberal politicians, and some civil rights organizations appear to sup- port the proposition. Let's look at it with the help of some data devel- oped by my friend and colleague Dr. Thomas Sowell. The Nation's Report Card for 2017 showed the following reading scores for fourth-graders in New York state's public schools: Thir- ty-two percent scored below basic, with 32 percent scoring basic, 27 percent scoring proficient and 9 percent scoring advanced. When it came to black fourth-graders in the state, 19 percent scored proficient, and 3 percent scored advanced ( Dr. Sowell compared 2016 -17 scores on the New York state EL A test. Thirty percent of Brooklyn's William Floyd elementary school third-graders scored well below proficient in English and language arts, but at a Success Academy charter school in the same build- ing, only one did. At William Floyd, 36 per- cent were below profi- cient, with 24 percent being proficient and none being above pro- ficient. By contrast, at Success Academy, on- ly 17 percent of third- graders were below proficient, with 70 per- cent being proficient and 11 percent being above profi- cient. Among Success Academy's fourth-graders, 51 percent and 43 percent, respectively, scored pro- ficient and above proficient, while their William Floyd counterparts scored 23 percent and 6 percent, respectively, proficient and above proficient. It's worthwhile stress- ing that William Floyd and this Success Academy location have the same address. Similar high performance can be found in the Manhattan char- ter school KIPP Infinity Mid- dle School among its sixth-, sev- enth- and eighth-graders when compared with that of students at New Design Middle School, a public school at the same location. Liber- als believe integration is a necessary condi- tion for black academ- ic excellence. Public charter schools such as those mentioned above belie that vision. Sowell points out that only 39 percent of stu- dents in all New York state schools who were recently tested scored at the "proficient" level in math, but 100 percent of the students at the Crown Heights Success Academy tested proficient. Blacks and Hispanics constitute 90 percent of the students in that Suc- cess Academy. There's little question that char- ter schools provide superior edu- cational opportunities for black youngsters. In a story The New York Times ran about charter schools earlier this month, "With Democratic Wins, Charter Schools Face a Backlash in N.Y. and Other American impulse moves toward liberty Heritage Viewpoint by Edwin J. Feulner Pursuit of the Cure by Star Parker When Democrats win, freedom loses The headlines about the incom- ing 116th Congress scream that our representation has never been so "young," so "blue," so "diverse." If diversity is about how people look, this Congress is very diverse. It's a fact that there has never been so great a number of representa- tives who are women and people of color. There are 124 women, 55 blacks, 43 Latinos and 15 Asians. But if diversity means diversity of thought, it's practically nonex- istent. Of the 124 women, 105 are Dem- ocrats. Of the 55 blacks, all are Democrats. Of the 43 Latinos, 34 are Democrats. Of the 15 Asians, 14 are Democrats. The celebration about alleged diversity is really a celebration of one, uniform voice on the left, dressed in different colors, calling in unison for moving America fur- ther toward socialism and secular humanism. All the politics of today's Demo- cratic Party, which is as far left as it has ever been, is about how people look and where they come from. Once we called this prejudice or stereotyping. Now we call it pro- gressivism. This is anything but Martin Lu- ther King's famous dream that his children would one day be judged by "the content of their character and not the color of their skin." It takes a certain blindness to miss the irony in these politicians of the left, who call for honoring and empowering individuals, and choose to do this by making them less free. They claim to enhance individual dignity by expanding government to dictate our health care, how we save and retire, our relationship with our employer, how and what we can say to oth- ers and what they can say to us, and just about every detail of our private lives and decisions. How has it become so lost in our country that the way we dignify in- dividuals is by believing in them, by granting them freedom to take responsibility for their own life? In this election, Republicans won a national majority only from white voters. Hispanics voted 69 percent for Democrats; blacks, 90 percent; and Asians, 77 percent. Minority Americans have bought the lie that personal free- dom is not in their interest — that government should run their lives. This is meaningful to us all be- cause they represent the growth demographics of the nation. According to recent analysis from the Brookings Institution, white America will be in the mi- nority by 2045. However by 2027, just eight years from now, the ma- jority of Americans 29 and under will be non-white. The socialists, the secular hu- manists, know time is on their side. It's a waiting game for them. The new Democrat House has only one thing in mind — biding its time to inflict maximum dam- age on President Donald Trump in order to lay the groundwork for whomever they nominate for pres- ident in 2020. So expect a very noisy two years. What can Republicans do? Get far more aggressive in reaching into these minority communities about what losing or gaining free- dom will mean to them. Republi- cans have a very important story to tell that is not reaching these communities. Countries that are not free don't grow, because all the activity is about transferring wealth — not creating it. The progressive politics of blame, dependence and envy make the well-connected rich and keep impoverished people poor. It's why over the last 50 years, many black politicians have gotten wealthy while the gap in average house- hold income between whites and blacks is 50 percent greater today than it was in 1970. Republicans and all Americans who care about bequeathing a free nation to their children and grand- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, rep- resentative-elect for New York's 14th Congressional District, is widely known as the nation's cheerleader-in-chief for socialism. But even she might have a tough time getting to the left of another Empire State politician: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. Many liberals soft-pedal their love of big government. They avoid using the s-word, of course, but they go further, using hard cases to justify policies that shift power away from the people and toward the government. Not Mr. de Blasio. He was dem- onstrating a deep commitment to socialism before Miss Ocasio-Cor- tex was even born. He was such a huge supporter of Nicaragua's Sandinistas in the 1980s that he not only raised mon- ey for them, he even traveled there to help provide aid. "But he returned with some- thing else entirely," The New York Times noted in a 2013 pro- file of Mr. de Blasio, "a vision of the possibilities of an unfettered leftist government." Many young activists wind up tempering their enthusiasm over the years. Age brings knowledge, experience, and maybe a little wis- dom. They discover that the feel- good promises of so- cialism aren't nearly as workable in reality as they appear to be in theory. Again — not Mr. de Blasio. Thirty years later, he doesn't seem to have learned much at all. "I have an activist's desire to improve peo- ple's lives," he said in The Times profile. Which sounds nice until you realize that, like other social- ists, he means to "improve" your life on his terms, leaving you with no real say in the matter. Conservatives often have to de- code what left-leaning politicians say in support of what we call the "nanny state." Mr. de Blasio, how- ever, just lays it all out for us. Asked in an interview last year for New York magazine what pre- vents him from making more prog- ress on "income inequality," Mr. de Blasio replied: "What's been hardest is the way our legal system is structured to favor private property. I think peo- ple all over this city, of every back- ground, would like to have the city government be able to determine which building goes where, how high it will be, who gets to live in it, what the rent will be. "I think there's a socialistic impulse, which I hear every day, in every kind of community, that they would like things to be planned in accor- dance to their needs. And I would, too." See? All of you people out there thinking that own the things you've bought — you're the prob- lem. If only you'd sit back and let your government overlords run your little lives, you'd be so hap- py. Right? Unfortunately for Mr. de Blasio and his fellow lefties, the track re- cord of socialism completely un- dermines their pie-in-the-sky rhet- oric. Supporters of socialism like to point to Norway and other prosper- ous Scandinavian countries to make their case. But these countries are "operating generous welfare states For better or for worse, for rich- er or for poorer, in sickness and in health, I am in love with Coca- Cola. "Was she ever really mine? " Al- den wonders as I risk being late to stop at McDonald's for a large Coke. Well, yes, I am his, but also, I am Coke's. I have very strong opinions about my Coke preferences. Not just in the Coke versus Pepsi de- bate (although I don't understand how that's still a debate, because Coke is clearly superior), but I al- so have a ranking of different Coke products. From best to worst, we have: 1. McDonald's Fountain Coke Alden tells me McDonald's has a special Coke formula, and I'm inclined to believe it because it is magical. I can think of noth- ing more refreshing than a crisp, large, fresh-from-the-drive-thru, had-to-open-my-straw-with-my- teeth-so-I-could-drive, Coke. And it's only $1.07 or $1.08 depending on which county you're in. I have a dedicated "emergency Coke dol- lar" in my car at all times. 2. Other Fountain Coke Next up is any other fountain Coke. Fountain Cokes in gener- al are the perfect blend of syrup, carbonation and ice. Except Son- ic. Sonic needs to cool it on their ice (no pun intended). 3. Coke from a can Coke from a can comes in at number three. To be fair, I imag- ine Coke from a glass bottle might deserve this spot, but unfortunate- ly I have not had enough glass bot- tle Coke to pass proper judgment on it, so it is not on my tier list. I ap- preciate Coke from a can because

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