Random Rantings

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Stranger than Fiction...

I heard it through the grapevine...

A friend of mine thought she heard a news story on the radio this morning that was talking about a Pagan family that was forced to sell their home and move to another neighborhood due to harassment by the civic association where they lived...

She remembered the post about my weird dream that included a scene of us having to move out because our civic association had barred non-Christians from living in our neighborhood...

She thought that she had heard that the civic association in this town was trying to promote the local "city of character" program, and was therefore targeting residents who were not supportive of the religious nature of the program.

She said she listened to the news on and off this morning, and heard nothing else about it.

I have spent some time today doing web searches on keywords that would probably be in the report, and have not found anything.

Did anyone else out there in the blogosphere hear anything about it, or do you think my friend imagined the story? (Sorry sweetie - but you suggested it first :)


Thursday, March 16, 2006

Sound Bite

"People place their hand on the Bible and swear to uphold the Constitution. They don't put their hand on the Constitution and swear to uphold the Bible." -- Jamie Raskin

[To read more about the genesis of this quote - pun intended (I know, groan)- see this article on Talk2Action: http://www.talk2action.org/story/2006/3/16/01942/8991]

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Great Minds Think Alike

"All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others."

While I was thinking it, he was writing it...


Thanks to Brian Kaylor for a great article...

...and for saving me the trouble of writing just about the same thing.


Weird Dream...

I sometimes have prophetic dreams. This is not something supernatural – but yes, go ahead and call me weird, I’m used to it… I generally have very vivid dreams, and remember them after waking up. I have a friend who says I am “lucid dreaming” because I am aware of the fact that I am dreaming, and have control over what’s going on, and my reactions to my dream environment. Regardless of how I dream, the important part is what I dream. My brain is wired in such a way that I pick up on subtle environmental clues – what people usually call “the handwriting on the wall” – and my subconscious processes it every night when I’m sleeping. So – the context and action in my dreams usually are caused by my brain making connections between disparate clues that I pick up on during the day.

This means that on a fairly regular basis, when I wake up I have an insight about something going on in my life, or in the world around me… and that on a fairly regular basis, some of these insights turn out to be right…

For those Harry Potter fans – it’s like having a pensieve.

So – for what it’s worth – I share with you the unusual dream I had last night…

It started out with me reading the newspaper while watching the TV. My house had some significant changes in décor, which indicated to me that it was a future location. Also – the newspaper said it was November of 2006. The TV news is covering a story about terrorist action in the US – there were no specifics about the action – in other words, it wasn’t an attack like 9/11, the news people were talking about how a terrorist ring had been infiltrated and a huge plan was foiled. They were showing on the news, video of suspects being arrested and carried off in police vans. An unusual element is that the majority of the suspects in this terrorist ring were not of Middle-East descent, the majority of them looked “American”.

There was an abrupt change of venue, and I’m sitting at dinner at my sister’s place, watching the election returns. My brother-in-law ranting about how the Democrats hadn’t made enough inroads this election, and my husband saying it was because everyone was so proud of the Bush administration having busted the terrorist ring. The Northeast and California generally elected Democrats, ousting incumbent republicans (Santorum was ousted at least! J), but the GOP gained additional seats in the South and Central states.

Another abrupt change of venue, and I’m getting a call from a friend’s mother, telling me that my friend, who is a political activist, was arrested under suspicion of being part of a terrorist cell, and that I needed to go to court to appear on my friend’s behalf as a character witness. She was apparently in D.C. at a protest (that I was supposed to be at too, but couldn’t get off from work) when a group she was with got arrested when they were having lunch at the Hard Rock Café nearby the Mall.

Yet another abrupt switch, and I’m attending a protest with my husband in tow, and my friend’s husband, protesting her and others’, arrests, the fact that they are being held indefinitely with no specific charges, and that friends and family of these “suspects” have been subject to extensive investigation by law enforcement.

There was a brief interlude where it was obvious that I was working for some campaign – though it wasn’t clear who the candidate was, or what office this person was seeking. I was talking with some random campaign worker – we were watching the debates on TV and rejoicing that the Democrats had finally found a voice after all of the GOP’s scratching away at our civil rights in the name of fighting terrorism.

The next scene was very disturbing, with me rushing to pick up my niece and nephew from daycare, because we don’t know where my sister and brother-in-law are. I had gotten a call from the daycare saying that the kids were still there after 6pm, and that no one had come for them, and that they couldn’t get a hold of mom & dad at any phone number. I ran up to get them and took them back to their house, and was watching TV while making dinner for the kids. There were terrorist attacks happening at multiple targets across the US. I went into another room to call my husband to tell him that we didn’t know where my siblings were, but that I had gotten the kids home and they were eating. I was trying to hide from them that we were worried about their parents. I spent a long time watching the TV coverage, which surprisingly, held no interest for the two munchkins, who kept playing on the floor, absolutely oblivious to what was going on. My dream was not specific as to what the “targets” were – but it was enough that traffic was snarled everywhere, and there were widespread panic. From my perspective it felt like the action was everywhere. The TV kept reporting new attacks every 20 minutes or so, and there were cities that hadn’t been attacked, but the panic level got so high, that riots broke out. The TV showed pictures of looting and gangs of people swarming the streets. After what seemed like several hours, my sister and brother-in-law got home – they had been swept up in terrible traffic, but were safe. After the panic and traffic had subsided in our area, my husband came over, and we spent the night at my sister’s – it made us all feel safer to be together.

The previous scene had apparently occurred about 1 week before Election Day, because this next venue was still at my sister’s home, but we were now all together watching the TV in absolute shock and horror. The government had decided to postpone the 2008 election, due to the widespread damage and panic of the recent terrorist attacks. The problem was not the delay – since it was generally agreed upon that many polling places were not in any state to organize and complete voting… The problem was that an alternative date was not set – the postponement was “indefinite”. We watched as the government also announced that in an emergency session they had repealed term limits so that we would be able to re-elect Bush to a third term. This was due to a “sense of urgency felt around the country” that we shouldn’t abruptly change leadership in the middle of this crisis. And, since the “crisis” might take a while to “abate”, we needed to allow for our governmental officials to remain in place, but an election to also take place at the same time (“we are still a democracy after all”).

The next scene was at my friend’s home – she apparently was let out of jail at some point, but my dream did not explain how or when. This was a political rally at her home the night of the 2008 elections – that ended up being held in January of 2009. We were watching with dismay Bush squeaking out a win by a very tiny margin in many key states. Bush wins, but at the same time there are tons of news stories about voting irregularities – and most of the election is considered contested until multiple recounts are completed.

An abrupt change of scene – we’re at my sister’s house again, and watching the news. It’s been several months past the election and the news is talking about new programs that the 3rd Bush administration is putting together. Despite the hotly contested election, and that may candidates, including the presidential opponent, have NOT conceded the race, the government is still operating as if Bush was the clear winner – swearing him in and all despite protests by election officials.

Another change of scene – and my husband and I are moving out of our house and onto a small farm we bought that is just outside of town. Apparently we were forced out of our neighborhood because of new programs that allow civic associations to choose who is allowed to live in a neighborhood… all in the name of creating a “community of character”. The associations are not allowed to discriminate on race – but they can discriminate on “lifestyle”, since the whole point is to gather a wholesome community and get rid of those who would not respect the desired character of the neighborhood. Our religious choices (being Jewish) put us in conflict with the stated ideals of the community. We purchased some land – an old farm that the owner didn’t want developed, and so only would sell to someone who promised to live there and keep it a farm. We couldn’t afford the entire parcel – so he was willing to sell us several acres of the property around the house and barn, and we would keep that as a small farm, and the rest he would sell to the University, and they would be using it to expand the campus.

A few months later – we’re welcoming my sister and her family onto the farm. The same thing happened to them in their community, and they had no place to go, since by that time, they could not find any neighborhood that would allow them to live there. They moved into our home, and we started construction on a separate house for them on the property, so that they would have their own space.



From behind enemy lines... 3/6/06

Support the Marriage Protection Amendment
March 6, 2006 Refer a Friend

To date voters in 19 states have acted to protect marriage as the union of a man and a woman. The message to the rest of the country and to our U.S. Senators is clear: citizens everywhere are in strong support of this most sacred institution. Despite this progress, the courts still pose a direct threat to the democratic process. Consider Nebraska.

Nebraska was one of the first states in 2000 not only to protect marriage, but also to do so in its state constitution. While over 70 percent of Nebraska voters approved amending the constitution, a single federal judge overturned everything Nebraskans worked so hard to accomplish. The judge's decision makes a mockery of the phrase "We the People" that begins the U.S. Constitution.

President Bush, affirming his support for the Marriage Protection Amendment, said, "After more than two centuries of American jurisprudence, and millennia of human experience, a few judges and local authorities are presuming to change the most fundamental institution of civilization." An amendment to the U.S. Constitution is the only way to curb permanently the power and ambition of judges, who discard the work of our Founders and the will of most Americans.

The vote in the U.S. Senate is currently scheduled for the week of June 5, 2006. We have time to make a difference - and we must. Please sign this petition in support of the Marriage Protection Amendment. We will deliver these petitions to your Senator prior to the vote. Let your voice be heard.

Without this amendment, liberal courts are likely to mandate homosexual "marriage." When that occurs, every institution in American society will be pressured to change and to accept, even honor, this new civil right. Churches will be harassed. Schools will be infused with literature and history textbooks that praise homosexuality and insist it is normative. Our already eroding culture will accelerate its decline. Marriage will ultimately be abolished. The lessons from overseas are clear.

The time to act is now - while we have time. I ask you, from the bottom of my heart, to sign our petition and to join with tens of thousands of your fellow Americans who are responding when their country needs them. It does no good to defend our civilization in foreign lands only to lose it here at home. Please do your part, and may God bless you and your family.

Petition to U.S. Senators for Preserving Traditional One-Man/One-Woman Marriage in America

Tony Perkins

P.S. It's essential that we have a massive show of support for the Marriage Protection Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Please sign our petition to the U.S. Senate and forward this message, today, to your friends. When our voices are heard, Congress will act.

“Without this amendment, liberal courts are likely to mandate homosexual "marriage." When that occurs, every institution in American society will be pressured to change and to accept, even honor, this new civil right. Churches will be harassed. Schools will be infused with literature and history textbooks that praise homosexuality and insist it is normative. Our already eroding culture will accelerate its decline. Marriage will ultimately be abolished. The lessons from overseas are clear.”

Isn’t this the same argument that was used against integration? That one day society would be forced to accept that Blacks are equal?

I really doubt that marriage will be abolished – especially since that’s what the homosexual community is after…

And… umm… excuse my ignorance… but, what are “the lessons from overseas”?


Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Serious Education Needed!

Apparently the reason that more people aren't outraged by our current state of governmental affairs is that they don't know that they should be outraged...

Are we all forgetting what we learned in grade-school civics class? Or are schools these days not teaching civics anymore?

Perhaps our popular culture has become the "opiate of the masses", such that people are only interested in what goes on in their own circle of influence.

Regardless of where this ignorance comes from - we have a big job ahead of us to educate everyone first, and then get them to take action.

Study: Few Americans Know 1st Amendment
By Anna Johnson, Associated Press Writer

CHICAGO - Americans apparently know more about "The Simpsons" than they do about the First Amendment.

Only one in four Americans can name more than one of the five freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment (freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly and petition for redress of grievances.) But more than half can name at least two members of the cartoon family, according to a survey.

The study by the new McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum found that 22 percent of Americans could name all five Simpson family members, compared with just one in 1,000 people who could name all five First Amendment freedoms.

Joe Madeira, director of exhibitions at the museum, said he was surprised by the results.

"Part of the survey really shows there are misconceptions, and part of our mission is to clear up these misconceptions," said Madeira, whose museum will be dedicated to helping visitors understand the First Amendment when it opens in April. "It means we have our job cut out for us."

The survey found more people could name the three "American Idol" judges than identify three First Amendment rights. They were also more likely to remember popular advertising slogans.
It also showed that people misidentified First Amendment rights. About one in five people thought the right to own a pet was protected, and 38 percent said they believed the right against self-incrimination contained in the Fifth Amendment was a First Amendment right, the survey found.

The telephone survey of 1,000 adults was conducted Jan. 20-22 by the research firm Synovate and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.