The Press-Dispatch

June 24, 2020

The Press-Dispatch

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 18 of 20

B-8 Wednesday, June 24, 2020 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 I was watching the bird feeder and squirrel corn feeder that my son, Lawrence, gave me a couple of weeks ago. What a thoughtful ges- ture. It's been a while since the last feeders were installed, and time and weather broke them down. So now, I have a new set and they tru- ly entertain me during the times I take a pause from doing odds and ends inside and around the house. These beautiful birds come and go, especially the robins and blue jays and goldfinches, woodpeck- ers and others I could not identi- fy. They are quite entertaining to watch. I began to admire their intense and varied colors and it remind- ed me that surely, the variety and beauty of these creatures did not come by chance but by design. And that's another set of pages I can discuss: evolution versus de- sign. But I'll leave that topic for now. I have not even mentioned the beauty of the color and varied de- signs of the flowers around our house. In addition to the feeders, our neighborhood has a large pond which is also so pretty to watch. We are very grateful for the care and up- keep that Mark Flint and Tom Fisher are doing out of the good- ness of their hearts. One of our neigh- bors, Thom Kinney, had taken care of this pond for all the years while he was a resi- dent. We got spoiled by that, and his since moved away upon retirement, we who live around the pond had to assume care. Thank goodness for the two I mentioned earlier stepped up to the plate to make sure algae are controlled and the holes burrowed by muskrats get repaired and do not wreak havoc to the dam that supports the east wall. The wa- ter looks gorgeous and clean, es- pecially with that blue tint added. I also was told that there are about 10 carp seeded into the pond so they could eat the algae. I think there also were some chemicals added into the water. I'm not really too knowledgeable on pond care. One thing I know, our gratitude is beyond measure for the care being given to that pond. Thank you, guys! • • • I would be remiss if I did not mention that my mother, who was nicknamed Sunshine in the long-term care facility at Ni- agara Falls, Canada celebrated her 104 th birthday on June 1. You heard that right… 104. Amazingly, she remains practi- cally independent with some as- sistance with dressing. She is able to read without glasses, feeds her- self well, uses a walker for ambu- lation, is hard of hearing but when you talk loud enough, she does re- spond. She has some spells of re- petitive conversations but her memory remains good. I shared her story last year, My Point of View By Dr. H. K. Fenol, Jr., M.D. Observing the beauty around us Minority View By Walter E. Williams Now what? Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 No decent person can support George Floyd's mistreatment, or the mistreatment of anyone else, at the hands of police officers with the sworn duty to uphold the law. The Minneapolis authorities moved quickly, and Derek Chauvin was fired from the Minneapolis po- lice department, placed under ar- rest and charged with second-de- gree murder and other charges. The three officers who were with him were also fired and charged two counts of aiding and abetting — one for second-degree murder and one for second-degree man- slaughter. Peaceful protest in any cause is as American as apple pie, but what we saw in the wake of George Floyd's murder is as despicable as anything recently seen in our na- tion. What makes it worse is the si- lence and seemly support in many quarters for anarchists who have highjacked the protests to promote their own ends. These are the white liberals and leftists groups like Antifa who could care less about the major problems that ex- ist in black communities and made worse by the rioting and looting. "Black Entrepreneurs 2020 Trends: A look at A frican-Amer- ican-owned businesses in 2020" is a survey of black-owned busi- nesses. When blacks were asked how they view them- selves in the present political climate, most were either "very con- fident" or "somewhat confident." If that survey were run to- day, I doubt wheth- er we would get any- where near the same results. Part of the dif- ference would be from the government's economic shut- down of our nation but most of it would be the result of the recent wanton destruction within black communities. There are videos of legally armed black business own- ers standing outside their shops to protect them. There are oth- er scenes of black small-business owners in tears over the destruc- tion of businesses that they've put their life's savings into. My ques- tion to the white Antifa anarchists, and their fellow black looters, is how does the destruction of black- owned business promote justice for the murder of George Floyd? The recent looting and proper- ty destruction, as well as the high crime rates in many black neigh- borhoods, have the effect of a law that outlaws economic growth and opportunities. During the re- cent mayhem in black communities, stores of many types were loot- ed and destroyed. CVS pharmacy has closed 60 stores in 21 states amid looting and pro- tests. Large stores like Walmart were loot- ed and burned. Ma- ny smaller stores and businesses were loot- ed and burned. Who will bear the ultimate cost of the rioting? If you said black people, you are right. Black people must bear the ex- pense and inconvenience to go to suburban shopping malls if they are to avoid the higher prices charged by smaller neighborhood stores that have survived the riot- ing and looting. Even when there is not the kind of social disorder of recent weeks, lawlessness is the hallmark of ma- ny black communities. Ultimate- ly, the solution to this lawlessness rests with black people. Given the current political environment, it does not benefit a black or white politician to take those steps nec- essary to crack down on lawless- Race for the Cure By Star Parker Points to Ponder by Rev. Ford Bond The Father's Day The Golden age of television provided us with a wealth of fa- ther figures such as Jim Anderson, Ward Clever, Andy Taylor and Ste- ven Douglas. T V fathers were allowed to make mistakes such as a rush to judgment, showing a lack of impar- tiality, or interfering with dating! Then the program dealt with how the situation played out. In "T V L AND," the crisis was resolved and everyone lived happily-ever- after and dad was swell. Real life it doesn't always work out that way. Nevertheless, these fictional fathers had a positive in- fluence upon America because they presented an IDEAL – A COMPOSITE – of what human fa- ther should be like. In my neighborhood [as I grew up] if you could name a type of par- ent I can give you the name of a fa- ther who didn't handle life as a par- ent very well. There were fathers who were absent, abusive, neglect- ful, indifferent, permissive, and au- thoritarian. Just a few days ago was Father's Day and I realize as a pastor not ev- eryone relishes the day. I always attempt to offer comfort and en- couragement to those who feel em- bittered toward life because their father did not live up to the ideal. Furthermore, I suspect there were men whom were "father fig- ures" in his/her life who had a positive impact upon their lives. It could have been a neighbor, teach- er, family acquaintance, or a rel- ative. The Psalmist writes, "Mark the perfect man, and behold the up- right: for the end of that man is peace." The apostle James speaks about a "perfect man" and writes, "For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bri- dle the whole body." I suggest each of us know men who [when we were children] were/are the type of fathers the scriptures describe and were fa- ther figures. I learned years ago that some people have to work through their concept of a "father" before he/she is be able to connect with God as a heavenly Father because of expe- riences with their earthly father. Consider that for a moment. The word "father" conjures up different images for people. For some, "father" is associated with warm memories and laughter. For others, absence or rejection. This is why it's so important to understand that God is not only our Father, but He is a good Father. The Bible is clear about what our relationship with God is; He is our Father; we are His children. One of the most riveting and en- couraging stories about a father comes from a story Jesus told – of a wayward or prodigal son [Luke 15]. Jesus is using this parable to get inside of our hearts and to under- stand that what we see in the Fa- ther is a man who cares deeply for his children. He is urging the listener to proj- ect their feelings toward the father of the prodigal son upon our heav- enly Father who knows his/her needs, but allows us to reject his oversight. The pinnacle of the story occurs when the father sees his wayward son in the distance, "But when he [the prodigal son] was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him." What can we conclude? Two truths emerge from this parable, 1) You are a child of God, and 2) God is a good Father. A good father instructs and guides his children into adult- hood and is a compassionate dis- ciplinarian. The sum of the matter is this, our Heavenly Father dispenses grace in abundance to the way- ward and longs to have a relation- ship with all of His children. Regardless how we may feel about our biological father, He who created us remains the ideal Father, and we see the fruit of this in His son, Jesus. Think about it! In difficult times like these, our elected leaders must find a way to put aside raw emotion and re- ject any temptation to make polit- ical hay from tragedy. Otherwise, they cannot fully focus on the job of keeping people safe while pre- serving the rights of citizens. It's never easy to assemble a clear picture of a chaotic situa- tion. That task becomes no easier when politicians needlessly mud- dy the water. Yet that's what hap- pened last week when 21 U.S. sena- tors sent a letter to Defense Secre- tary Mark Esper and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mark Milley ex- pressing "grave" concerns about the danger of the military being "weaponized" to limit the expres- sion of liberty and justice. Yet an- other senator has proposed add- ing language to the annual defense authorization bill "preventing the use of military force against Amer- ican citizens exercising their First Amendment rights." Such strident alarmism over- looks the fact that our military leaders swear allegiance to the Constitution, to protect the liberties specified within. It also ignores histo- ry: our republic and military have weath- ered much more se- rious challenges in the past, without compromising citizens' rights. Adding to the turmoil is a tor- rent of breathless commentary on the presence of Esper and the uni- form worn by Milley when they ac- companied President Trump on a walk to Lafayette Park after a Rose Garden speech. But back to the letter. In it, the senators fret that Trump might invoke the Insurrection Act and deploy active military or federal- ized National Guard units to ar- eas where state and local officials have been unable to preserve law and or- der. They argue that the conditions which satisfy the require- ments of the Insurrec- tion Act, "are not cur- rently met." The facts show oth- erwise. The act allows for the use of the mili- tary acting in a feder- al capacity to address "any insur- rection, domestic violence, unlaw- ful combination, or conspiracy, if it—so hinders the execution of the laws of that State, and of the United States within the State, that any part or class of its people is de- prived of a right, privilege, immu- nity, or protection named in the Constitution and secured by law, and the constituted authorities of Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 Henry Olsen, a scholar from the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C., has a well-de- served reputation for on-target anal- ysis on politics and elections. Olsen just published a column in the Washington Post titled "Trump may be down, but he is not out. At least not yet." The bottom has fallen out of Pres- ident Donald Trump's approval rat- ings. Most recently, Gallup reports his approval at 39 % , down 10 points from the month before. According to Olsen, by conven- tional analysis, the outlook for a Trump victory in November is not good. "Presidents who polled this poorly less than five months before Election Day have always lost," he wrote. But how useful is conventional analysis now? President Trump is not a conven- tional figure. These are not conven- tional times. And his polling has been like a roller coaster since he was elected. The standard reelection cam- paign refrain is "Are you better off now than you were four years ago? " President Trump ran on a theme: "Make America Great Again." Vot- ers will ask in November, "Is Amer- ica greater today than four years ago? " Here again, there is reason for concern. Another new Gallup poll shows the percentage of Americans say- ing they are "extremely" or "very" proud of their country is the lowest ever, at 63% . This is 18 points lower than where it stood four years ago. Gallup also now reports only 20 % of Americans saying they are satis- fied with the direction of the coun- try. Just four months ago, in Febru- ary, it stood at 45% , the highest it had stood in 15 years. The first big drop in satisfaction occurred following the spread of COVID-19. Then, in May, it dropped 12 points following the death of George Floyd. Last February, the economy was surging, as was Trump's approval. Unemployment, including black un- employment, was at all-time lows. Now Trump is being tarred, jus- tifiably or not, with COVID-19 and racial unrest. Can light enter the tunnel? The May jobs report was strong, showing a drop in unemployment and 2.5 million new jobs. The econ- omy is starting to roar back. Most certainly, there will be some kind of bipartisan legislation deal- ing with policing. Demonstrations don't go on forever. Time, plus ac- tion on policing, could take the edge off racial tensions. A sharp economic recovery and easing of racial tensions can pro- duce a bounce-back for Trump like he has seen in the past. What is critical? What motivated voters to go Re- publican in 2016 and swing six blue states red was the Make America Great Again message: freedom in the marketplace and draining the swamp in Washington. The challenges are even greater now than then. We are now looking at a $2 tril- lion-plus deficit. National debt now stands at 110 % of our gross domestic product — the highest since World War II. The answers to our COVID-19 recovery and our racial challenges must be freedom. Only freedom will open the door to innovation and re- specting the humanity of every cit- izen. It will be easy to go down the al- ternative road, where the nation's left would like to take us — insti- tutionalizing the massive surge of government to deal with COVID-19 and more government-mandated di- versity as the answer to racial ten- sions. This will bog us down with socialism and slow growth, hurting the very people we supposedly want to help. Let's give credit to the American people. We're facing different crises today. But dealing with the greatest crisis is the best way to deal with the other ones. That greatest crisis is choosing the right path for the na- tion's future. The candidate who conveys to voters a sense that America's fu- ture will be defined by freedom, and a rule of law that respects the hu- Heritage Viewpoint By Thomas Spoehr President Trump can invoke the Insurrection Act. Should he? No. Can Trump recover?

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Press-Dispatch - June 24, 2020