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Archive for September, 2013

Here’s how I got involved.  My grandfather, my father’s father, would not talk about his family or his upbringing or where everyone hailed from.  His sister, my father’s aunt, was of the same mind.  My curiosity, when they were alive, was heightened by their reticence in this area.

One gets busy as a teenager, then as a young adult making one’s way in the world, then as a newlywed and, as the Internet hadn’t yet been invented, my family history moved way to the back of my mind.

Once the Internet, and the then free-to-access (no longer!) fledgling Ancestry.com was available, I began a small work toward figuring out my heritage.  Time, and the then lack of data left me with not much more than I had on paper, some 12-to-15 individuals.  And there it sat for many years.

Upon retirement, I began work on writing the novel I had pretty much always felt I had inside, but after some months I began dabbling in the family tree using the free My Heritage application.  Spurred on by my elder (by 12 years) brother, I began in earnest to try to find the horse thief who surely must have existed in my (father’s) family tree.  I even subscribed for a year to their online services to more readily access documents I felt would aid in my search.

Well, here I am months later, with some 385 individuals in my tree, with 947 links to other folks’ trees, almost 200 supporting documents, and as far as my original quest—to find out what the big secret was—I am precisely where I started.

While in another branch I found a gambler and bookmaker, the answer I sought remains a mystery.  I even found a thrice-wounded Confederate soldier who succumbed to his last wounds, so it’s not boring.

Meanwhile, most of the branching-off has been not in my genetic past, but in that of my brother’s current wife.  Apparently, knowing one’s heritage is as important to her relatives as it was in biblical times.

That’s not why I began pushing this bolder up this hill, however, and I have decided to expend any future energies in this area toward my original pursuit.  I am therefore no longer going to spend my time entering data and confirming matches on any branches not related to my own ancestors and those of my wife.

It turns out that this Genealogy thing can become a near-addiction.  There’s always “just one more thing,” as Lieutenant Columbo used to say, which can then lead to another, then another, ad Infinitum.

Next year, if I can afford it, I will probably pay for a short whack at Ancestry.com just to see if any of their touted services can help me solve my own mystery.  Wish me luck.

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When I took Journalism, they taught about the reprehensible practice(s) of what was called Yellow Journalism, or the act of presenting biasedopinion disguised as objective, well-researched news.  Do they even teach on it any longer, or has—as in so many other areas—history been rewritten?  Plagiarism and Yellow Journalism are normative for today’s lamestream media.  They parrot the Associated Press and each other, word-for-word, never actually checking facts, always looking for the zinger which will cause you to sit up and take notice.  “Truth,” from the press (all forms), has become that which is most often repeated, like a mantra, until it is pronounced true, whether it is or not, whether anyone has taken the time to actually check facts or not.  Whatever will advance a pet agenda, usually “Liberal.”

We are not better-informed than the citizenry of the first half of the 1900’s just because we are more-informed.  We are not more enlightened unless the light of Truth has exposed the lies and innuendo perpetrated upon us by those who pretend to keep us apprised.

And don’t even get me started on the overpaid “News Anchors” who are merely (in British terms) news readers.  They are not there to talk down to us, to sway us, to tug at our heartstrings.  They are there to do one thing:  read us the facts.

“My time is up, I thank you for yours.” (Mal Campbell)

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9/11

Tomorrow, a dozen years will have passed without, in my view, meaningful retribution having been meted out.  Instead, we have become prisoners in our own land for “our own protection.”  The Great Generation would not be subjecting themselves to being cowered, herded, spied upon, and searched in the normal course of life; requital would have been dispensed to those responsible and to those who abetted them.

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Once upon a time…

America, though she was not a “Christian” nation, believed in general in the Ten Commandments.  The Golden Rule, a paraphrase of Luke 6:31, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,”  adorned the front wall of every classroom.  We were quiet in church.  We respected our elders.  We both respected and feared authority and judgment, whether from the policeman, the principal, the lady up the street, or our parents.  We needed nobody to tell us that certain behaviors were unacceptable, and we felt the guilt if we transgressed—whether anyone else saw or heard us or not.

Today, Atheists are coming, so to speak, out of the woodwork, and not just to practice what they believe.  (I had a hard time writing that sentence.  If you believe in nothing, how can you  practice it?)  Being allowed to believe in nothing is not good enough for them; they must interfere with any public practice which conflicts with their non-beliefs.  To me, this screams the truth of the Scripture in Romans 1:19 and its context that mankind knows innately that there is, indeed, a God, and that they are under the power of that God; else, why would they fight so hard and loudly to drown out any mention of Him?    If God doesn’t exist, why would they fight against believers any more than against those who believe in, say, vampires? 

The “homosexual thing” (by which I mean the entire spectrum of LGBT) is the same way.  They don’t just want to practice their lifestyle, but make it illegal for you to shelter your own kids from it.  If today Bob thinks he’s Bobbie, he (I will not say “she”!) has to be allowed to use the girls’ restroom.  If tomorrow, he’s Bob again, he has to be able to use the boys’ restroom.  Want an example of their militant excess?  Read this:  They’ve made a Christian-owned bakery to close rather than undergo “rehabilitation and reeducation” contrary to their beliefs.

All that said above, and the sins which the Bible say they’re committing, are not why we’re Sodom.  That’s just a manifestation, a symptom of the real sin which is sending America down the tube.  Ezekiel 16:49 and its context tell us why this nation is going to “go up in smoke.”

“Pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease,” pride most of all, are at the heart of the matter.  Humility is a gift of God, and without God there is only Humanist pride in the creation, man, who has never fixed anything socially.  Mankind has only made things more complex, not better.  Meanwhile, according to (please allow my oversimplification) the Second Law of Thermodynamics, a system left to itself (that’s us, Earth, the Solar System, the Universe) will become less and less ordered (entropy).  Without an External Energy supplying input, whether in Space or here on Earth; whether in the world or in America—everything is decaying.  We’re just seeing the first stages.

Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

 

 

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You may think I’m talking about apples and oranges here, but be patient and let me posit my illustration.  A 92-year-old man in Germany is on trial because, back at the end of World War II, he was a Nazi officer, allegedly responsible for the execution of a resistance fighter.  Hey.  Since he’s lived—for 69 years!— an exemplary life and raised good children and grandchildren, shouldn’t that ameliorate his status?  Apparently not.  If guilty as charged, he’s a criminal and should be treated as such.

So, why the notion that criminals here in the United States—who have flaunted the law and sidestepped the system, good or bad, which we have in place for legal, orderly immigration—should be given a pass and shunted, even shuttled, to the head of a line in which law-abiding want-to-be immigrants have been waiting in legal compliance—sometimes for years, and at great expense?

Should those who run the race legally, staying on the set course, be pushed aside at the finish line in favor of those who took shortcuts during the race and sneaked back in at the Finish?  Should the prize of American Citizenship go to the cheaters while the within-the-rules runners are still striving to reach the Finish?

Congress is “debating” this issue, and will, as always, take the path which will garner them the most votes, rather than the path which requires integrity on their part as well as the immigrants.  Guess we know the outcome, don’t we?

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