Memorial Day

They fell in battle fighting for our right to enjoy freedom of speech or the right to remain silent. They gave their lives so we might be free to worship or free to not worship, to sing in the choir or sleep late on Sunday. They died defending our right to read words printed in a free press or to laugh at cartoons in the funny pages. They died in order that we might live and continue to live in a place called America.
Mostly they were young. They had sweethearts waiting for them at home. They had dads who were proud of the brave men their sons had become and mothers who still baked them cookies. They had dreams, American dreams. They dreamed of having kids and houses with white picket fences. They dreamed about starting a business or going to college. They were all heroes on their last day and they deserve the gratitude of a grateful nation. They felt the wrath of war for us and gave us peace.
They died so we could vote for the candidate of our choice each November, or have a backyard barbecue in July. They died so we could root, root, root for the home team, or just lay on our backs at the beach and watch the clouds sail by. They paid the highest price possible in order for our children to grow up in a country with a ‘golden torch’ and door on one end and a ‘Golden Gate’ on the other. They made it possible for bulls to run on Wall Street and for women to run for President. They stood against tyranny and tyrants. They stood up for America’s children in the playground and against the bullies of the world as only big brothers and sisters could do. We salute them. We salute them with parades and with color guards and with marching bands. But we also salute them with sack races and picnics, and row boats, and cold watermelon, and things as patriotic and American as a scoop of vanilla ice cream on a piece of Grandma’s famous American apple pie. Ingimar DeRidder

Hope for Baltimore

Mothers have the greatest and hardest job in the world. There is no other enterprise on earth that can compare to the importance of the product they produce. There is no other industry outside the mysteries of heaven that is more vital to national defense than motherhood. While Baltimore was on fire, erupting in riots, and rocks were raining down on the police force, the Governor and Mayor were arguing about jurisdiction and authority, and if the National Guard should be deployed. Teenagers, outraged by a sense of injustice in the death of another black man in police custody, and whipped into a frenzy by community disorganizers, anarchists, and agitators, – erupted in an explosion of rage. The ‘authorities’ were back on their heels.

Something happened in the midst of the chaos. One mother (one authority) recognized her son in the midst of the mob, face masked, with a brick in his hand. Forget the National Guard, forget the Highway Patrol, forget the Marines, a mother’s love kicked into action- not to save the world, or Baltimore, but to save her son. She physically disciplined her flesh and blood as a lioness would cuff an unruly cub on the Serengeti. Earlier in the day, she warned him not to join the mayhem, and he promised he wouldn’t. He broke his promise. Spotting him, she waded into the madness and brought one child to his senses, and brought him home.
Where were all the other mother’s, the defenders and keepers of the home? God bless the mother that rises up to stand in the gap, “to train up a child in the way that he should go, that when he is old he should not depart from it”? Mothers have been doing that since the beginning of time.

Forget, nuclear missiles or Abram’s Tanks, what America needs is an army of Mothers who rise up as instruments of God, to save one soul at a time. America needs a revival, a revival of motherhood. America needs godly mothers. Not Hip-Hop mothers, not Hollywood mothers, not Cosmopolitan Magazine mothers, but God fearing mothers, spiritual Tiger-mom mothers, and god-loving lionesses mothers who not only know God, but realized that motherhood is the hand of God in every civilized neighborhood. -id

Police Force

A 57 year old Indian man who was visiting his son in Madison, Alabama had the misfortune to be stopped by local police while he was out taking a walk in America. When confronted by several police officers, the dark-skinned man said “no English.” It seems “no English” is a crime in Alabama. The police proceeded to try to pat him down and the man put his hands in his pockets (an Indian gesture obviously meaning, “I don’t want to fight”). That was a big mistake. The police officer slammed the delicately built foreigner to the pavement breaking two vertebrae and leaving him partially paralyzed. This is not to say the police are any better in Russia, or China. In Mexico, I understand they not only arrest you, but also sometimes burn you alive (ie. 32 missing arrested young people whose bones mysteriously ended up in an ash heap). I digress. It seems we need to re-institute Civics classes in schools (remember those?). We need to teach everyone (including police officers) the Bill of Rights, the basics of our government, and responsibility of citizenship. Everyone needs to understand the importance of Authority and the limits of Authority, and everyone needs to understand Police Force. The policeman who did this has been fired and will be tried in a court of law. God bless America!

Once a police officer gives you an order they go into an automatic state that will force (that’s why they call it Police Force) compliance. Force escalates until compliance is achieved. If your father, who speaks no English, is going to walk along a highway, you might want to give him a letter to carry that explains “this is my Father visiting me. Please don’t beat him up” (along with your phone number in case of an emergency). If you have teenage sons (black or white) you might want to tell them about Authority and compliance, and to be polite even to a rude and boorish adult. You also might also tell them that without a police force and law enforcement, evil would rule the day and thugs and war lords would treat anyone walking alone down a street through their neighborhood much worse. Ingimar DeRidder

Civil Rights

What happened in Ferguson was not civil and it was not right. What happened in Ferguson was the collapse of civil order and a cascade into chaos. It’s cause was both simple and serious. it was all around “disrespect”. The black community (for the most part) feels disrespected. A civil society is based on respect. I respect you. You respect me. When that simple rule is broken, civility is broken. Standing up in the classroom when the teacher walks in, taking off your hat in the elevator or giving up your seat for a woman on the city bus, or GIs watching their language when “there’s a lady present,” were unwritten rules of civility of an era bygone. We used to say “yes Ma’am” and “yes Sir.” But even in the “good ‘ole days” it was not always so.

The Civil Rights Movement demanded that the politeness of a genteel society went both ways across a racial divide. Jim Crow disrespected a whole race of people. Changing that was not easy. Fairness said it was not only the black man who should say “Yes, sir” to the policeman, but the policeman should also address every black man as “Sir.” The Civil Rights movement demanded equality, justice, and respect. Today, disrespect rules.

Disrespect coats everything with a filthy film, like the soot from an old smoke stack of a Pennsylvania steel mill. It’s in the music, on the street, and in the air. It was center stage in Ferguson where, if we paid close attention, we might all get a good look ourselves and at the New America. In Ferguson there was no respect for the law, for the police, for private property, for authority, for the Grand Jury, and as it turned out no respect for life. Police have forgotten that they are “Civil Servants.”

Being “disrespected” on a daily basis is what many black people experience every day. Feeling disrespected is as painful as a slave owner’s whip. Most black people have just quietly endured the indignities. There is also the indignity of financial poverty and the poverty that comes from the lack of self-respect. To disrespect someone is to devalue them, to deny their worth, and disavow them. The pain and shame caused by such a disrespect can inflict an almost irreparable damage to the soul of a person or a whole community. Resentment can slowly build in such a wounded spirit until it erupts in ways that can be anything from suicidal to incendiary.

A perceived injustice often leads to a remedy that creates another injustice. That is why one war’s end is just the beginning of the next war. One disrespect leads to another, and to another, and to another, into a cascade of chaos. In Ferguson there was enough disrespect to go around. There every law of God was broken. All Ten Commandments were smashed before the first plate glass window was shattered. There was disrespect for property, authority, for parents, truth and life itself.

Disrespect begins with disrespect for God. A reverence for God keeps us from breaking into our neighbor’s house or business to steal his “stuff.” Disrespect for God is the first cataract in the descending cascade which always ends in calamity and chaos. Other cataracts are immorality, infidelity, idolatry, and cynicism (each breaking God’s plate glass windows).

Educators, politicians, and police forces are just some of “all the King’s horses, and all the King’s men” who are trying to put Humpty Dumpty back together again. They can’t. Our leaders are talking about change and managing bad behavior. They will try everything from smoke grenades, and greenbacks, to hand-outs and hand-ups. Without God things will only get worse.

Reverence is the fountain of respect. Remove the first commandment and the Temple of Trust becomes a flimsy house of cards. It will collapse. Remove the first commandment and you will spend a fortune trying to enforce the remaining nine (thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not lie, etc). Where there is no fear of God (reverence) there is a lot to be afraid of. Where there is reverence for God there is good. From reverence flows respect, and from that, not only a reason to be civil, but also to do what’s right. –Ingimar DeRidder

Rescue the Perishing and Border Babies

Jochebed put little Moses in a basket and launched her tiny vessel into the gentle flow of the Nile. A loving mother will do almost anything to save her children, even if it means giving them up. Some sixty thousand little (and not so little) baskets have washed up on our shores. One may contain a Moses; God only knows.
The rich and powerful seldom leave home or board the Mayflower looking for a better life, or that “shining city on a hill”. No, Pilgrims are not the privileged; they are the dreamers. Ellis Island was the Grand Central Station of the Desperate.

People laughed at Romney when he said Corporations were people. They are made up of people but anyone who has ever worked for one knows that they are heartless, and soul-less (unless your office is the one in the corner). Business is about the bottom line. It’s about the money. Government is about who collects the taxes and who gets the taxes. Follow the money. Money has become the God of America. Liberals are the first to tell you that you cannot legislate morality and then the same people demand charity or amnesty, and want to legislate morality. You cannot make someone love. Love must be given, it cannot be taken. What a politician means by charity is taking someone else’s money, keeping ninety percent for themselves and their friends, and putting what remains in the poor box.

Reaction to this tidal wave on our Southern border reveals character or the lack thereof. Some only see constituents (votes to ensure who controls the money), others only see customers (who will buy their products or pick their cotton). Others see competitors, chaos, crime, or the up-ending of the status quo of the United States. God sees souls.

Something is happening, not just at our border, but around the globe. Like the weather invisibly rising up from the thermals of equatorial Africa which will effect conditions half a world away, no man can stop this wind or the boiling instability, trouble and turmoil inside the godless human heart. And make no mistake, the godless heart is at the root cause of all this chaos.

Central American mothers hope their children will be rescued by America. A drowning man will cling to any floating object and even push under the very person who is trying to save him. Our politicians are conflicted. On the one hand we need to pull the survivors from the water, give them blankets to warm them, and something to eat. On the other hand we need to keep the ship of state from sinking. The problem is have they been rescued by the Mayflower or the Titanic? -id

Big Bang

Big Bang
Scientists say they have found evidence of the “Big Bang.” When asked to explain this Bang, we are told that an infinitesimally small portion of space suddenly exploded 13.8 billion years ago. The heat and debris has been flying through space ever since, eventually condensing into stars, planets, man and shopping malls. Talk about a “Once upon a Time” bedtime story! This is it. Pardon me, I still prefer the Bible, not just for bedtime but for all time.

Notice when listening to Scientists explain evolution how often they slip in the words “probably,” “most likely,” and “it may very well be.” Yes, and it may very well not be. First of all, if there is an explosion in your basement, your son may insist it was not the result of a misguided experiment with the chemistry set he got for Christmas, but rather a spontaneous expansion of hitherto inert elements in an infinitesimally small vacuum of basement space. I’m going with the chemistry set.

The Big Bang Theory is at a loss to explain, what exploded or what happened before that. The atheists love to mock our fairy tales and delusions when we speak of creation. Okay, who was fooling around with their chemistry set 13.8 Billion years ago and who gave him those chemicals for Christmas? Ingimar DeRidder

What’s Happening- Confessions of a Former News Addict

The slogan of the NY Times was “All the news that’s fit to print.” The New York World and the New York Journal were at war in the 1890’s. It was then that the term “Yellow Journalism” was coined. It was a racist expression in the race to sensationalism and the sale of newspapers. The NY Times had a reputation of reporting news “on the street” without rolling in the gutter. In the 1950’s there was the Times, the Daily News, and the Post. The first was white collar and the other two were blue. Then there was the National Enquirer which was no collar and no class. It was filled with the bazar, the scandalous, and the sordid. Photos of crime victims and scenes of horrific accidents dripped with blood although they were in black and white. Theirs was all the news “not fit to print” (or read for that matter).
Now there is the internet. The lines are blurred. A little tantalizing title or seductive photo beckons you to “click it” and once you do you have gone down Alice’s Rabbit Hole. As if there is not enough bad news and bad people in our neighborhood and nation, the headline wants to pull you off course and witness some horrid act of evil somewhere in China, or Africa.

I was a news addict. I could not get enough. I started with gateway drugs like the Today Show and Good Morning America, then I moved on to hard drugs. Soon CNN’s twenty-four-seven did not satisfy. Somehow I needed to know what O’Reilly had to say about this or that, Glen Beck, and Breitbart. I know, I know, I was “Strung out” on news crawlers, and split screens. I remember going to the Fillmore East in East Village off Second Avenue in the sixties. The hallucinogenic light show and the music were enough to blow the mind of an entire generation. Now that grey-headed generation is into News. What Timothy Leary was to psychedelic mind-bending for “Boomers” Ted Turner continued with CNN and none-stop- news. I told everyone I was able to handle it. I said I just wanted to know what was happening. Yep! It was a “happening.” Remember those? I was in denial even when I typed “Drudgereport” into the URL. There was a “rush” in reading the Banner Headline, and speaking about Rush, well—never mind.

Then I visited my friend Chris in NYC a retired lawyer and an Opera buff. I stayed with his family for a week and they never turned on the news, not once. I was going through withdrawal, cold turkey with all the symptoms, so I am not sure, but I think there was some Aida, and I seem to remember strains of Verdi’s Nabucco, and even the Pirates of Penzance (although I may have been trippin). When I arrived back in North Carolina I was clean. I reached for the remote by force of habit but before I pressed the favorite button, I suddenly realized I had no desire to listen to max headroom and the talking heads talking about bombs and buttheads. I took a deep breath and decided to listen to some music: St. Olaf’s Choir singing “There is a balm in Gilead”.- Ingimar DeRidder