Month: August 2007

Earning a school desk

This is from an email recently forwarded to me and I thought it worthy enough to preserve on this site. The lesson here is that there are many ways to demonstrate to young people what freedom, and the sacrifices that preserve our freedom, is all about. It takes moral courage and the strength of your convictions to speak up and speak out as this teacher and the superindentent did. I would hope that our school authorities would do similarly, not cowering to the forces that speak falsely against such endeavors. Hooray for this Teacher! We need more like her! In September 2005, on the first day of school, Martha Cothren, a social studies school teacher at Robinson High School in Little Rock, AR, did something not to be forgotten. On the first day of school, with permission of the school superintendent, the principal and the building supervisor, she took all of the desks out of the classroom. The kids came into first period and there were no desks. They obviously looked around and said, “Ms. Cothren, where’s our desk?” And she said, “You can’t have a desk until you tell me how you earn them.” They thought, “Well, maybe it’s our grades.” “No,” she said. “Maybe it’s our behavior.” And she told them, “No, it’s not even your behavior.” And so they came and went in the first period,...

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Iraq and Vietnam: a comparison for the Gratification Generation

(first draft) The article referenced below is one of the most thoughtful pieces, loaded with facts and clear analysis, about why Iraq is NOT Vietnam and the trouble in America that will plague our society and threaten our freedom until we excise it from our collective psyche. It stimulated me to consider further what will affect this country far beyond the current war. The Truth About Iraq and Vietnam By Alan W. Dowd | 8/3/2007 When it became apparent after 9/11 that the US would strike back not just at the tendrils of terror but also at the roots of terror—regimes like Afghanistan’s Taliban and Saddam Hussein’s Iraq—I wondered if my countrymen had the stomach and stamina for what was to come. This is, after all, the land of fast food and FedEx, which helps explain why the quarter-century before 9/11 was marked by a series of push-button, almost-bloodless wars. In the shadow of Vietnam, each mini-war conditioned the American people to expect less blood and less sacrifice than the previous conflict. And this, in turn, conditioned the American military to be overly cautious, leading inevitably to more low-risk, low-impact wars. In Iraq and Afghanistan, that cycle has ended. Dowd offers an excellent statistical analysis of the objective difference between the two and goes deeper to explain much of the reason why Americans have little stomach for what...

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