Thursday, April 28, 2011

Birthers, Britain, and Charlie Sheen

I had taken a long hiatus from politics, believing such nonsense to be incredibly distracting to my theological studies, faithful preaching, and writing. Though I still keep up with and watch headlines, I shied away from reading too many political stories and analyses because I have felt rather impotent when it comes to politics. What I do and what I have to say does not seem to matter much. My blog is not widely read, I am a registered Republican and somewhat conservative, and all my political representation is moderate to liberal Democrat. The letters I write to these are usually answered, but none speak to my concerns or directly answer my direct questions. What I express is very delicately - but surely purposefully - dismissed as inconsequential. The bright side is that these politicians have never asked for money (I think they are pretty sure that is wasted postage!).

Maybe it is time to get back into the fray and take things as they come. Maybe it is time to be more direct and more focused on the things that seem to matter more to so many. Maybe by doing so, and encouraging others to do so, I can do my small part to help put a stop to the utter nonsense that has us all so distracted that we hardly notice how poorly we are being represented and how disgracefully we have cast aside the constitutional realities that threaten the foundation upon which this nation was founded.

Donald Trump is thumping his chest and telling all who will listen (including his media lap dogs who seem to drool at every word he speaks) that he single-handedly brought the Obama administration to its knees in getting the president to release his long-form birth certificate (or certificate of live birth, to those hair-splitters). This accomplishment, such as it is, may endear him to the so-called "birthers" out there, but surely we more rational citizens can see that this endeavor was the effort of a very wealthy man with political ambitions and entirely too much free time on his hands.

One's citizenship status is important in national politics since our constitution has mandated requirements (not suggestions to be brushed aside), but this is the task of each state's secretary of state to ensure that all candidates are properly certified and constitutionally qualified to be on a ballot. Enough is enough. Let us move from the "silliness" to tasks of far more substance. Let us take the "race card" out of the deck, if indeed this is the motivation of the birthers, and move along.

Prince William of Great Britain is about to tie the knot, and his intended bride seems lovely and of the same stuff of Diana; approachable, personable, and not given to much royalty protocol. How wonderful for them since William also seems to be a decent man of honor and integrity. However, I cannot understand the fascination so many Americans have with British royalty. This wedding has absolutely no impact, no substance, and no consequence for Americans. Send the happy couple a card (they will likely never see), offer a prayer for their well-being (that will surely be heard), but for pity's sake move along.

I am pleased that the glow of Charlie Sheen's star seems to have faded so much so that we are now worried about Lindsay Lohan's legal troubles, Christina Aguilera's weight gain, and Gwyneth Paltrow's apparent disdain for her maternal grandmother. I am also gratified that Hugh Hefner's upcoming (or already done) nuptials (or adoption) have not garnered as much attention as the cooties which apparently came from his unwashed pool, or grotto, or jet tub. One might suggest there are many who are "itching" to get past the garbage and find some semblance of relief from the madness that makes us who we are.

The south has just endured a horrific tornado outbreak that has destroyed hundreds of homes, has taken a few hundred lives, and has called us all to question our priorities. Surely these storms as realities of nature serve best to remind us that there is only One whom we can count on, only One who can save us, only One who is willing - quite literally - to bleed and to die for us. This is the One whom we as a nation have ignored - or taken for granted - for far too long and Who may well be demanding at least as much attention as birthers, Britain, and Charlie Sheen.

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