Category Archives: Human Interest

Super Bowl Sunday and Singing Our National Anthem

Just a little something I came across tonigt. It’s credited to “A Marine Corps Colonel in Afghanistan”, but you know how that goes as far as letters floating around the internet I don’t know who originally wrote it and so far I’ve had no luck finding where it originated from, but I’d like to shake the person’s hand that did.
Nanthem

So with all the kindness I can muster, I give this one piece of advice to the next pop star who is asked to sing our National Anthem at a sporting event. Save the vocal gymnastics and the physical gyrations for your concerts. Just sing this song the way you were taught to sing it in kindergarten – straight up, no styling.

Sing it with the constant awareness that there are soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines watching you from bases and outposts all over the world. Don’t make them cringe with your self-centered ego gratification.

Sing it as if you are standing before a row of 86-year-old WWII vets wearing their Purple Hearts, Silver Stars and flag pins on their cardigans and you want them to be proud of you for honoring them and the country they love – not because you want them to think you are a superstar musician. They could see that from your costume, makeup and your entourage.

Sing ‘The Star Spangled Banner’ with the courtesy and humility that tells the audience that it is about America, not you. And please remember, not everything has to be sung as a Spiritual. We’re getting a little weary of that. Francis Scott Key does not need any help.

1 Comment

Filed under Human Interest, Other News, Water Cooler

2 years after death, woman gets her Christmas Wish for family

Have tissues ready and a few minutes to compose yourself afterward: Man receives letter from dying wife 2 years later. The letter — and a wish — was to be given to him only after he’d found love again. Prior to her death, Brenda Schmitz had made arrangements with a friend to deliver the letter to radio station KSTZ in Des Moines, Iowa. Brenda had always been touched by the “Star” 102.5 Christmas Wish program that a Des Moines radio station runs each year.

The station takes submissions of Christmas Wishes and consults with local partners to grant some of them.

“About a week and half ago we got a letter in the mail,” Scott Allen said Friday night. He’s the brand manager at the station, KSTZ “Star” 102.5 FM. “We’ve been doing the Christmas Wish program for 20-plus years. We’ve never received a wish like this, ever.”

Brenda Schmitz, in an undated photos. (star1025.com)

Brenda Schmitz, in an undated photo. (star1025.com)

Dated Aug. 3, 2011, Brenda Schmitz’s letter lists three wishes.

“I have a wish for David and the boys and the woman and her family if she has kids also,” she wrote. “I want them to know I love them very much and they always feel safe in a world of pain.” David and Brenda had four sons: Carter, Josh, Justin and Max.

Station officials told David Schmitz on Thursday that they were granting a Christmas Wish for him. But he didn’t know about Brenda’s letter until he was in the studio and on the air — hearing host Colleen Kelly read his wife’s words.

Leave a comment

Filed under Current Events, Human Interest, Other News, Religion

Me and My House Will Serve the Lord and Not Watch A&E

Steven Ruffatto

Steven Ruffatto Asst. Professor
Criminal Justice at Harrisburg Area Community College 

Dear A&E,

Thank you for bringing us a show that was family friendly and fun to watch. I greatly appreciated the fact that my Christian family could watch a Christian family on TV as opposed to much of the garbage that is reality TV. Unfortunately, you have done a disservice to Phil Robertson as well as the Christian AND non-Christian fans of Duck Dynasty.

Freedom of speech means that we are all free to speak what we believe. The Supreme Court does restrict some speech. In fact they specifically address such speech that may cause panic or physical injury. The example they give is that someone cannot scream “fire” in a crowded movie theater when there is no fire.

Me and My House Will Serve the Lord and Not Watch A&E

Phil Roberson in his “I Am Second” video. (Source: I Am Second screen shot)

Why, because it would cause a panic and people would get hurt. Did Phil Robertson’s speech meet this criteria set forth by the Supreme Court? No, it did not. The only people who panicked were the A&E executives that decided to pull Phil from the show.

Phil Robertson spoke what he knew to be true according to the Bible. Does that ruffle some peoples feathers because it goes against what they want to do? Yes it does.

The members of GLAAD are free to speak out against Christianity and those that believe in the Bible. How is that speech any different than Phil’s?

Under the U.S. Constitution they both have a right to express their thoughts and opinions. So why is Phil being punished for expressing his opinions? Why are you punishing Phil Robertson for being a Christian? This was not an incident of homophobia or hate speech.

Me and My House Will Serve the Lord and Not Watch A&E

This 2012 photo released by A&E shows, from left, Phil Robertson, Jase Robertson, Si Robertson and Willie Robertson from the A&E series, “Duck Dynasty.” The A&E channel says “Duck Dynasty” patriarch Phil Robertson is off the show indefinitely after condemning gays as sinners in a magazine interview. In a statement Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013, A&E said it was extremely disappointed to read Robertson’s comments in GQ magazine. (AP Photo/A&E, Zach Dilgard)

Homosexuality is clearly defined as a sin in the Bible just as other sins are listed. Stating it as a sin does not make someone anti-gay. Phil even stated, “we should love God and each other.”

If GLAAD and the LGBT community expect everyone to be tolerant of their views, opinions, and lifestyle choices, they too must be tolerant of Bible believing Christians, their views, opinions, and lifestyle choices. For A&E to succumb to the pressures of “political correctness” speaks volumes about your true concerns.

However, I would remind you that tolerance is a two-way street.

At this point what is needed is a clarification about your programming and your ant-Christian stance. If you are truly an anti-Christian station, which the move to pull Phil from the show based on his Christian beliefs reveals you to be, please be up front about it. You will most likely lose viewers based on this incident.

However, do not for a minute believe that you are losing viewers because of Phil’s comments. You will lose viewers due to your reaction to his comments.

Therefore, without clarification from A&E that you support Christians and Christian beliefs as much as you support GLAAD and the LGBT community, then  “As for Me and My House We Will No Longer Support or Watch A&E.”

Respectfully,

Steven D. Ruffatto


Our culture has accepted two huge lies. The first is that if you disagree with someone’s lifestyle, you must fear or hate them. The second is that to love someone means you agree with everything they believe or do. Both are nonsense. You don’t have to compromise convictions to be compassionate.

I’d really like to hear your thoughts. To me, this goes way beyond a TV show or family. It’s about political correctness trumping freedom of speech. What do you think? Please leave your comments below.

Leave a comment

Filed under Conservative, Current Events, Human Interest, Liberal, Media, Religion, Water Cooler

Leonard Pitts Addresses 9/11 Terrorists (September 12, 2001)

I’ve reposted this article by Pulitzer Prize winner Leonard Pitts, year after year, since it first appeared in the Miami Herald on September 12, 2001. These are words we should never forget….

iwo-9-11-final

It’s my job to have something to say. They pay me to provide words that help make sense of that which

troubles the American soul. But in this moment of airless shock when hot tears sting disbelieving eyes, the only thing I can find to say, the only words that seem to fit, must be addressed to the unknown author of this suffering.

 You monster. You beast. You unspeakable bastard.

What lesson did you hope to teach us by your coward’s attack on our World Trade Center, our

Pentagon, us? What was it you hoped we would learn? Whatever it was, please know that you failed.

Did you want us to respect your cause? You just damned your cause.

Did you want to make us fear? You just steeled our resolve.

Did you want to tear us apart? You just brought us together.


Let me tell you about my people. We are a vast and quarrelsome

family, a family rent by racial, social, political and class division, but a family nonetheless.

We’re frivolous, yes, capable of expending tremendous emotional energy on pop cultural minutiae — a singer’s revealing dress, a ball team’s misfortune, a cartoon mouse.  

We’re wealthy, too, spoiled by the ready availability of trinkets and material goods, and maybe because of that, we walk through life with a certain sense of blithe entitlement. 

 We are fundamentally decent, though — peace-loving and compassionate. We struggle to know the right thing and to do it.
And we are, the overwhelming majority of us, people of faith, believers in a just and loving God.

Some people — you, perhaps — think that any or all of this makes us weak. You’re mistaken.
We are not weak. Indeed, we are strong in ways that cannot be measured by arsenals.

Yes, we’re in pain now. We are in mourning and we are in shock.

We’re still grappling with the unreality of the awful thing you did, still working to make ourselves understand that this isn’t a

special effect from some Hollywood blockbuster, isn’t the plot development from a Tom Clancy

novel. Both in terms of the awful scope of their ambition and the probable final death toll, your

attacks are likely to go down as the worst acts of terrorism in the history of the United States and,

probably, the history of the world. You’ve bloodied us as we have never been bloodied before.

But there’s a gulf of difference between making us bloody and making us fall. This is the lesson

Japan was taught to its bitter sorrow the last time anyone hit us this hard, the last time anyone

brought us such abrupt and monumental pain.

When roused, we are righteous in our outrage, terrible in our force.
When provoked by this level of barbarism, we will bear any suffering, pay any cost, go to any length, in the pursuit of justice.

 I tell you this without fear of contradiction. I know my people, as you, I think, do not. What I know reassures me.
It also causes me to tremble with dread of the future.

 In the days to come, there will be recrimination and accusation, fingers pointing to determine whose failure allowed this to happen

and what can be done to prevent it from happening again.

There will be heightened security, misguided talk of revoking basic freedoms.
We’ll go forward from this moment sobered, chastened, sad. But determined, too. Unimaginably determined.

You see, the steel in us is not always readily apparent. That aspect of our character is seldom

understood by people who don’t know us well. On this day, the family’s bickering is put on hold.

As Americans we will weep, as Americans we will mourn, and as Americans, we will rise in defense of all that we cherish.


So I ask again: What was it you hoped to teach us?
It occurs to me that maybe you just wanted us to know the depths of your hatred. If that’s the case, consider the message received.

And take this message in exchange: You don’t know my people. You don’t know what we’re capable of.
You don’t know what you just started. But you’re about to learn.

Copyright 2001 the Miami Herald.

1 Comment

Filed under Current Events, Human Interest, Media, Radical Islam, Terrorism, Uncategorized

Next time you think, ‘I don’t like cops’ – Reblog from Wiseguy Diaries

The other day, someone whom I adore made mention to someone else how, ‘they didn’t like cops’, because they get to do things the rest of us are not privileged to do only because they’re the law.

This common paradox within our society today intrigued me to the point of wanting to talk about it in a few insignificant and meaningless words.

You know, I think I have said the same thing only because one or two cops, in my entire life, have caused me grief whether it was a ticket, ( I obviously did not deserve ), or some smart ass reply directed my way when I interfered with their presumably mundane day.  Shame on me for being so presumptuous.

Pretty petty now as I see it.  Pretty petty of me.

After the Boston bombing and seeing the mountains of videos and photos of who was running toward their possible death and those running away, one photo in particular showing an officer, defensively positioned over a fallen elderly man, who was obviously in distress, and shielding him in a firm protective stance.  This photo made me now become something of a different man.  I asked myself, ‘Which way would I run?’

boston
CONTINUE: http://wiseguyhorseracing.wordpress.com/2013/05/10/next-time-you-think-i-dont-like-cops

Leave a comment

Filed under Human Interest, Law Enforcement, Military and Police

11-year-old boy Sings National Anthem – Performance Followed By Hateful Tweets

San Antonio, Texas born Sebastien De La Cruz, is an 11-year-old boy who sang the national anthem during Game 3 of the NBA Finals in San Antonio, and was the victim of hateful online comments following his first performance.
Despite this, De La Cruz returned to sing the anthem at the start of Game 4. Game 3 was such a blowout for the Spurs that the team asked De La Cruz to return and sing, eager to keep their luck going. The young singer, who was discovered on the TV show America’s Got Talent, was happy to come back.

Shortly after his performance, twitter lit up with hateful, racist comments about Sebastian,many questioning his race, immigration status…even his mariachi outfit. Fortunately, normal thinking Tweeters stepped up and partly due to public shaming, most tweets slamming Sebastian have since been either deleted or the authors have closed their accounts. It’s things like this that make me shake my head and wonder what the hell is wrong with some people?

Click to view full size

Click to view full size

De La Cruz’s father, Juan De La Cruz says, says the family didn’t take the comments too personally.”I think people reacted the way they did because Sebastien was wearing his mariachi outfit,” said De La Cruz, “But, it doesn’t make sense to listen to those people when most of the feedback we have gotten is positive. San Antonio supports Sebastien.”
As for Sebastian, this is what he had to say…

Tweet by 11 year old Sebastian De La Cruz

Tweet by 11 year old Sebastian De La Cruz

In an interview when asked what he thought about the controversy, he explained how he was,”from San Antonio- born and raised” and how his dad was,”Actually in the Navy for a pretty long time.”

We should all take a lesson from this kid….

2 Comments

Filed under Current Events, Human Interest

Play the cymbals they said. You can’t fail the cymbals…

Awesome kid! He even had the presence of mind to turn and face the flag. Somebody raised him right.

1 Comment

Filed under Human Interest, Other News