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Prejudice and paranoia
It is not an easy thing I ask. First of all, hear me out.
The Confederate battle flag [rebel flag] was used in the 19th century as the banner of a people who fought primarily for their freedom from the oppression[financial, social, and otherwise] of a northern neighbor. Many Virginians were a part of this cause. This cause was lost. Every April 15 we are reminded of this.
This rebel flag was used in the 20th century[at first] as a symbol of defiance to a power [and I might add , “money”] hungry federal government. Sadly, this same flag came to be used by those who opposed equal rights for our black citizens. It came to represent [erroneously] to many and nearly all, in fact, this oppression. Many of you are old enough to remember this. Many of us are also old enough to have done this, such as I.
Now, what I am asking is this: Will you not prejudge those who fly the flag today? It is not warranted, and it is not a healthy attitude for anyone really. Certainly, any of you who knew me in the “’60s”, know that I am a different man today. God changed my mind about these things.
I do not ask this end of prejudice lightly, for it is not an easy thing, as I said. Those of you who are Christians, will find this easier.
I suggest that when a pickup with the flag pulls alongside, or you see it displayed other places, don’t assume [prejudge] this person an enemy. It is unwarranted and I believe unhealthy, creating needless stress.
We are all of one blood, as the Word says. Life is hard enough without imagining enemies all around. Certainly, I do fly the flag and, certainly, I wish we had not lost that war. As long as we are wishing, I wish Breckenridge had won in 1860 and the 600,000 lives not spent needlessly.
Wendell K. Johnson
Morals and Economics
There is a lot more of a relation between Morals and Economics than a lot of people would like to admit. When the Economic Disaster of 2008 started the phrase “Moral Hazard” was used. Economic “Moral Hazard” is the concept that if you reward bad behavior, the bad behavior will be repeated and grow. Moral “Moral Hazard” is the failure to rebuke sin.
I once attended a management course for a week, then heard a sermon on Sunday. They both said the same thing. Christian principles are good for an individual, a business and a nation.
The reason people do not like Christian principles is because Christian principles contain both what to do, but also what not to do. Atheists would rather have an economic disaster than to accept what the Bible says not to do. If America wants prosperity, then both the do’s and the don’ts must be followed. It is not possible to legalize pornography, abortion and homosexuality then expect posterity. I do not believe God blesses an individual or a nation that violates Christian principles. There is more of a possibility of destruction than blessing for the rejection of Christian principles.
There are three parties that have created the moral and economic disaster in America: those that participate, those that advocate and those that fail to rebuke.
It was immoral to accept the sub prime mortgages that were being offered when there was little or no possibility of paying the mortgages. Christian principles would have provided reasons not to take on more debt than you can afford.
It was immoral to offer sub prime mortgages to people that had little or no possibility of paying the mortgages. The Community Reinvestment Act created during Democratic Administrations not only advocated sub prime mortgages, but forced banks to offer sub prime mortgages.
It was immoral for Christians not to rebuke the government for offering sub prime mortgages. Christians are failing at presenting both the do’s and the don’ts of the Bible. Christians are afraid of being called judgmental. Christians take the “God is in Control” concept to an extreme that they accept anything that happens as God’s Will, even if it is opposite to Christian principles. Christians accept the economic disaster as God’s chastisement, but forget that the immorality stated back in the Roosevelt administration with the introduction of Socialism into the government.
It is immoral for people to think that adultery and homosexuality are acceptable.
It is immoral for the Atheistic Liberal News and Entertainment Industry to advocate that adultery and homosexuality are acceptable. It is immoral for WSET to broadcast that which the Atheistic Liberal News and Entertainment Industry advocates.
It is immoral for Christians to fail to publicly rebuke adultery and homosexuality, even though they will be called judgmental.
A good sermon for any preacher would be to stand in the pulpit with a newspaper in his left hand and a Bible in his right hand. He should shake the newspaper and state, “Here are the problems.” He should then shake the Bible and state, “Here is the prevention, there is not a cure. No amount of health care/welfare will cure the scars of sin, but God will forgive the sins and provide the Holy Spirit to guide your life to help prevent future problems, if you will accept Jesus Christ as Lord/Savior and commit to following the commandments/doctrines of the Bible”. A few examples could be discussed to fill in the 20 or so minutes that is allotted to the preacher.
I pray that church leaders would be able to convince the youth of America that Christian principles are essential to maintaining a society.
That will be difficult because there is big money being made by pimping the short term pleasures of pornography, abortion, adultery, homosexuality, etc.
A lot of people do not want the Christian principles of the Bible because the Bible does condemn pornography, abortion, adultery, homosexuality, etc., but it also condemns lying, cheating and stealing, which is what causes economic disasters.
I believe the Christian lifestyle represents the most environmentally friendly, socially responsible lifestyle that can exist.
Clifford D. Russell
You were there
To the Friends of the Olde Liberty Station: September 18, 2009, as we watched fire consume our restaurant and destroy 104 years of local history, you were there.
You grieved with us, and we comforted one another with hugs, handshakes and prayers. Our firefighters, rescue workers and police officers bravely and adeptly performed their jobs. Practical, kind people supplied nourishment for our bodily needs. You documented the sad history of the day with photographs and video footage.
City and County servants offered condolences and pledged support for our future. As the Station burned, one by-stander brought us a railroad spike. She wanted it to be the first “nail” toward rebuilding.
Once the fire was controlled, we were brought a large trailer that was parked on-site to be used as long as we needed it. There were multiple offers of off-site storage. One of our food suppliers provided pick-up and storage of our frozen food inventory. When we arrived at our homes that night, physically and emotionally spent, we found flowers waiting at our doorsteps to lift our spirits. Thank you.
Over the next days, we assessed damage, salvaged and cleaned what we could, dispersed useable goods, inventoried contents and lined up a team to rebuild. You showered us with cards, prayers, phone calls and e-mail messages. You provided on-site meals to sustain us as we worked. You dropped by with words of encouragement and support. Thank you.
In the following weeks, as we watched demolition strip our beloved “grand dame” bare, you were there. You made it possible to start the work of reconstruction in a timely manner. You recognized that our fifty employees were going to face financial hardship and set up a bank account to contribute to their relief. Our restaurant friends at Big Lick on Timberlake Road offered use of their kitchen so that the Station’s catering obligations could be fulfilled. Thank you.
When actual reconstruction started and the promise of a new beginning was made tangible, you were there. Together, we cheered as trusses were lifted and delighted in watching the building come under roof so quickly. You started planning benefits to assist the staff long-term. Sometimes you showed up with brownies, cookies or a dinner invitation to encourage us and to let us know that you were still thinking about us. Our local newspapers and radio and TV stations documented our progress and informed the public of ways to help. Thank you.
As more time passed, and new walls and windows began to appear, you were there. You celebrated such progress with us, and you began to unfurl your own productions. The Bower Center literally set the stage for Generic Folk, Savannah Graham, Minus John and Danny McBroom and company to perform. All of this was instigated and organized by Bedford’s own Corey Crompton and Allison Johnson to raise donations for the ongoing support of the Station’s employees. Attendees were treated to exciting blues, folk and rock music. Cuppa Joe’s Kathy McGary led other local restaurants in supplying food for sale. Thank you.
You were there at Liberty High School for an incredible evening of entertainment by 2nd Flight. This concert was sponsored by a host of the area’s caring individuals and fine businesses. Steve and Donna Arrington masterfully spearheaded the planning, organizing and execution of a silent auction, concessions and the 2nd Flight concert. And once again, you were there. Liberty High School not only supplied the venue, but its SCA, Art Department and Band Boosters, under the leadership of the County School System and the school’s principals, all played integral parts in promoting the program. A vast number of other supporters were there offering advertising, sponsorships, parking, sound and lighting, announcing, world-class music, concessions and auction donations. And you were there purchasing admission tickets and making auction bids. Thank you.
As Olde Liberty Station is once again made whole, our hearts are filled with gratitude for the love and support you have given us every step of the way. We are proud beyond measure to be a part of the Bedford Community. We know that the Station will ultimately be better than ever, because it will have been rebuilt by the selflessness and generosity of this community. We are deeply appreciative of every act of kindness that has been bestowed on us. We thank God for each and every one of you.
Harry and Marty Leist, Heather and Kyle Williams, Julie Leist and the staff of Olde Liberty Station
When a person takes a principled position based on reason and then writes a letter to the editor expressing it, that’s one thing. It is quite another to take the published talking points of a politician and try to pass them off as your own.
That is precisely what Patricia Carr did in her letter supporting Democrat Congressman Tom Perriello for his vote in support of liberal House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s 2,000-page monstrosity of a healthcare bill. Ms Carr lifted entire paragraphs from Perriello’s Web site. What’s worse is that most of the paragraphs she cut-and-pasted into her letter are, to be generous, nothing less than misleading.
Here’s the truth.
Perriello and the Democrats claim their bill protects Medicare. It doesn’t. According to a government report released on November 14 (and as reported in the LA Times) the bill’s plan to cut more than $500 billion from future Medicare spending will result in sharply reduced benefits for some senior citizens and will jeopardize access to care for millions of others.
Perriello and the Democrats claim their bill is deficit neutral. That’s not true when you consider the disingenuous healthcare funding slight of hand they’re pulling. While the Pelosi-Perriello plan will cut costs by reducing Medicare reimbursements to doctors, the House in another bill rescinded those cuts to the tune of $300 Billion. That means actual federal healthcare costs under the House plan will go up by $300 Billion, but since it isn’t actually in the healthcare bill, they aren’t counting it. To be blunt, they’re lying to us about the actual costs of their plan.
Perriello and the Democrats say their bill contains tort reform. They have to be joking on that one. While the bill does establish financial incentives for states to adopt alternatives to medical malpractice lawsuits, it won’t give the incentives to any states that try to limit attorneys’ fees or place caps on damages. That means that doctor malpractice insurance costs, a major contributor to runaway healthcare costs, won’t come down.
Perriello and the Democrats claim that one of their primary goals is to expand heathcare coverage to the poor who otherwise will suffer. If that’s true, then they missed their target by a long shot! The November 14 government report says that doctors and hospitals will not be able to cope with the more than 30 million people being added to the ranks of the insured. That means everyone will suffer.
If Perriello and the Democrats have their way with this so-called healthcare bill, every person legally in the U.S. will be required to purchase health insurance or risk going to jail. Think about that. You will be required by law to purchase a service whether you want it or not or whether you can afford it or not. This is government coercion at its worst. And you can’t help but wonder what coercive action will come next if this one stands.
The Pelosi-Perriello plan will create a huge government bureaucracy to administer your healthcare, to limit your choices, and to make you beholden to government. It is an unprecedented attempt to expand government power into the most intimate aspect of our lives.
Perriello and the Democrats don’t deserve our thanks. Through this horrendous healthcare bill they are trying to take away our freedom and mortgage our children’s financial future. By his vote, Perriello ignored the best interests of his constituents in order to please his Democratic Party masters. And now he’s trying to get away with it by being less than truthful. And folks like Patricia Carr who cut-and-paste his talking points are his willing co-conspirators.
Jennifer B. Rose
Thanks to the city, citizens
The Bower Center wishes to thank the City of Bedford for its support of the arts in our community.
With money given to us from a Local Government Challenge Grant, we offered a free concert on Saturday evening November 21. The Virginia Handbell Consort from Hampton, Va., thrilled a full house with melodic renditions of favorite, familiar Christmas carols. John Barnhart would have, once again, commented on the outstanding acoustics of the Performance Hall.
The sound was amazing. Equally amazing was the outpouring of food and personal items that audience members brought to share with Christian Ministry. On Monday, Bruce filled my car to capacity with 80 or so bags of gifts for me to deliver. The need at Christian Ministry could be seen by the number of cars in the lot and the number of people waiting inside to be helped.
The volunteers were grateful for the food, and we were happy to be part of a great concert and to help those in need at the holidays.
Acting Director Bower Center for the Arts