Vindication

we-are-enterprise-logo-150x150When is an apology not an apology?

If you have followed this story for the past 19 months you know my take on it. If you haven’t or if you want a refresher you can see it at the links below.

Watch Your Back published 11/22/2014

YOU Are Not Alone published 12/01/2014

Watch Your Back (UPDATE)  published 02/23/2015

The Silenced Majority published 03/29/2015

The details of this issue were summarized very well in the article by Michelle Mann in the Southeast Sun on 05/25/2015,

ECS Superintendent apologizes to teacher

What is new in this story is the prepared statement called an apology that was read by the superintendent in the board meeting on 05/24/2016 which brings me back to my original question. Continue reading Vindication

13 Minutes

350px-boll_weevil_monument13 minutes is how long the Enterprise City Council lasted on 1/19/16, which is not that unusual in itself. I did think some of the things that happened during that short 13 minutes were worthy of sharing so that is what you are reading. You can see the entire meeting online here 1/19/16 City Council Meeting. It lasted a total of 13 minutes and 19 seconds according to the video and that included the opening prayer, pledge of allegiance, all items approved unanimously and the passing of the gavel of the President of the Council to Rhett Marques. You have to give them credit. That is an impressively efficient use of time to get all that done in 13 minutes. Continue reading 13 Minutes

Top 5 Posts from 2015 + All the Rest

Happy, Happy, HappyAs 2016 begins I wanted thank all who have stopped by and read, commented, and shared any of the words I have posted here on this blog in 2015 so here it is…

Thank You!

I do appreciate your time and input and hope to be able to post something that might interest you again in 2016. Looking back it is always good to see what interested most readers last year, what worked and what didn’t. Based on total number of views here are the top five most popular Peculiar Perspective posts of 2015. Continue reading Top 5 Posts from 2015 + All the Rest

With All Due Respect

With All Due Respect

Often in public discourse you will hear someone, more often than not a politician, say, “With all due respect” as a preface to statements that are often disrespectful.

What is your first thought when you hear “With all due respect”?

Mine is the subject of their comments is about to be disrespected. More specifically, my thoughts go back to Saturday Night Live in the late 1970’s, when it was still funny in my opinion. Dan Aykroyd and Jane Curtin did a Point/Counter Point segment during Weekend Update. Point_Counterpoint_L_Dan_Aykroyd_Jane_CurtinDan would often begin his reply to Jane with, “Jane, you ignorant slut” and Jane would often begin her response to Dan with, “Dan, you pompous ass.” I think this parody accurately reflects the meaning of this phrase more often than not in today’s contentious political climate. This was really pushing the envelope on TV back then.

Pay attention. You are likely to hear this phrase used often during the upcoming election year. Each one of us has to judge the intent of the speaker for ourselves.

Why So Serious?

Try this as you watch the presidential debates. You are watching the debates aren’t you? Substitute one of the phrases above when you hear “with all due respect.” It might just bring a smile to your face and make the experience more enjoyable. Political correctness has the effect of removing a sense of humor from too many discussions. I am not making light of serious issues that need to be discussed but if we can’t laugh at ourselves from time to time we are taking ourselves much too seriously.

Political Correctness has to go

I am proud to live in a country where we still can express our thoughts freely. However, too often political correctness is allowed to silence discussion of different opinions. If you don’t want to take my word for that, see what a liberal has to say about it in, The Silencing, by Kirsten Powers wheThe Silencing by Kirsten Powersre she says,

“The illiberal left knows that delegitimization works. It’s their strongest weapon in a country with unparalleled free speech protections. If you can’t suppress views you don’t like with repressive laws, then delegitimize the people expressing them…delegitimization through demonizing and intimidation remains the illiberal left’s most effective tactic.”

If we disagree, let’s discuss it. Often the best idea is only discovered when opposing ideas are discussed. Let’s not let political correctness kill our First Amendment right of freedom of expression and any chance we have to arrive at that best decision.

Dr. Ben Carson also recognizes this issue and addressed it well in his closing remarks from the Republican presidential debate on 11/10/2015 when he said,

“There is something special about this nation and we must embrace it and be proud of it and never give it way for the sake of political correctness.”

20151110_BenCarson_ClosingRemarks

To borrow from Jane Curtin’s Weekend Update closing remarks,

“Good night and have a pleasant tomorrow.”

Until next time…

If you like what you read here or just want to see what comes out of my warped mind enter your email address in the sidebar on the left and subscribe. This is the only way to ensure you will be notified immediately whenever a new post is published.

 

Loud and Clear

350px-boll_weevil_monumentIn case you missed it…

At the end of my last blog post on this subject, You Can’t Please Everyone, I mentioned Take Back Enterprise had made a formal request to the city council and asked to meet with them. The city council and mayor have now responded to that request (I think) and their collective response speaks pretty much for itself. I did add a few thoughts and questions that occurred to me. Maybe they are some you have pondered as well. Continue reading Loud and Clear

Reality, Biblical Correctness and GQ

I ended my post called Don’t believe Phil…or me either published on January 9, 2014 with the recommendation,

“If you really want to understand what Phil Robertson believes get his book unPhiltered, which was published after this article and controversy.”

IMG_20150711_113402.242 (3)I recently finished reading unPhiltered by Phil Robertson myself and am glad I followed my own advice. I enjoyed it so much I decided to share a few details about the book as well as provide a postscript to the GQ article controversy that encouraged me and I hope will do the same for you. I made the picture of his book black and white because Phil still believes, as I do, right & wrong as well as good & evil still exists. The fact that popular culture does not subscribe to this belief has no bearing on that truth.

Love God, Love Other People

If you want an executive summary of unPhiltered here it is:

Love God. Love one another.

Everything Phil Robertson believes and says flows through this filter. It is an amazingly simple, yet profound, summary of what Jesus Christ tells us, as Christians, to do. Phil is not the source for this thought or philosophy. It is a very concise paraphrase of what Jesus said in Matthew 22:34-40.

34 But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 40 On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”

The Way Phil Sees It

The subtitle of the book is “The Way I See It” and that is what you get; Phil’s opinion, wisdom and common sense formed in 28 years BJC and 40+ years AJC. This is not his life story. If you want that Happy, Happy, Happy is the book you need.

unPhiltered is presented in three sections, Personal Lifestyles, Hot Topics, and Faith. It is written in a conversational style as if you were sitting with Phil at his kitchen table listening to him describe the way he sees life and making a pretty good case for you to come around to his way of thinking if you are not already there. I found myself agreeing with his views and common sense and think many of you will too.

It is, as the title alludes to, unfiltered. Don’t be fooled by his appearance and slow talking Southern demeanor. Phil Robertson is a very wise man.

Personal Lifestyles

The topics of Spiritual Dieting, Money, Social Media, Family, and my favorite in this section Biblical Correctness are covered in this section.

He starts with a quote from the preface of the first edition of the American Dictionary of the English Language, published in 1828 by a man named Noah Webster.

“The moral principles and precepts contained in the Scriptures ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws. All the miseries and evils which men suffer from, vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible.”

Phil believes this statement is true and does his best to live according to the precepts in the Bible. He captured my sentiments exactly when he said,

“The way things are going, it’s okay to have an opinion in America, as long as you don’t offend anyone and don’t quote the Bible.”

Biblical Correctness

Phil has decided to be biblically correct instead of politically correct and I think that is a wise decision. Here are a couple more highlights from this topic that give you a flavor for his perspective. These are even more true today than when this book was published.

“Biblical correctness has never changed. Conversely, political correctness is constantly changing and evolving. There has been a constant erosion of biblical correctness in our country. Political correctness is constantly morphing into a dark maze of nonsense. It keeps getting more and more nonsensical.”

“Today’s truth is based on what is socially acceptable, and biblical correctness has somehow become hate speech.”

Hot Topics

In section two Phil discusses Politics, Race, Entitlements, Government and Gun Control.

Gun Control

On the topic of gun control Phil points out murder is sin and has been so “2,700 years before guns were introduced. You can’t blame sin on the device one uses; you blame the person committing the sin.”

“Trust me, the murder rate in this country would drop dramatically if we started to love God and love one another. It is the solution to all of our country’s ailments, as well as the ailments of the entire world.”

There he goes again – love God and love one another. I told you that is THE central theme in how Phil sees the world.

Sin Control

“It was a love problem when the law was written – do not murder – not a weapons problem. It is a love problem now. We need sin control and self control.”

Faith

In this last section the topics are Intelligent Design Or Blind Chance, Good VS. Evil, Sin, Death and Good News.

In this last section the first chapter, Intelligent Design Or Blind Chance, Phil makes a solid case for why evolution does not make any sense and is not supported by the “evidence” evolutionists claim exists. He knows this subject very well and makes arguments you could use in discussing this subject with others too.

Sin

In the chapter on Sin he covers the GQ article interview and his description is not too far from the one I provided in my blog post Don’t believe Phil…or me either published a little over a year and a half ago. That was encouraging to me and proved the old adage even a blind hog can find an acorn every now and then.

He encourages you to read the source, the Bible, for yourself as I did.

“The gospel is the same, Jesus is the same, and the response is the same. I’m not saying anything that you can’t document, read, and verify on your own by simply picking up a Bible and reading it. I strongly suggest you do.”

GQ Article Controversy Postscript

In the aftermath of the GQ Article controversy and Phil’s suspension from Duck Dynasty you will learn how Phil felt about the whole situation and might be surprised. You will also be reminded God is always in control of every situation. He can and often does use the most unlikely situation for His glory. He did that again with this situation.

Phil gives two examples of people who learned about the GQ article controversy and, as a result, now have their eternal reservations confirmed in Heaven. Their lives were changed forever by what many only see as a controversy or even hate speech. You will have to get the book to learn the details. These are just two examples at the time he wrote the book of people who actually visited White’s Ferry Road Church in West Monroe, Louisiana, where Phil worships and teaches a Sunday School class. I am confident there are many more both before and since who have made similar decisions Phil is not aware of. God knows and the people whose lives have been changed forever know and that is all that really matters.

In light of this controversy and A&E’s response to it Phil’s perspective is probably not one Hollywood would share or promote but it is true.

“Who would have ever thought that Hollywood, through a reality TV show, would be financing the gospel being preached all over the United States and world?”

Good News

In closing here are a couple more thoughts from the book that most who condemn Phil for his beliefs ignore or refuse to understand. They are not unique to Phil Robertson but are shared by all who believe and live as Christians.

“I condemn no one, and you don’t have to judge anybody. Just go forth and tell people about Jesus. The power to save people is in the story. Just tell the story.”

“Just remember this–even if you hate me, I love you anyway. So does God.” 

Check it out for yourself

There is no way I could really do justice to this book here. I only scratched the surface. I hope I have shared enough to generate some interest and you will get your own copy and read it for yourself. Click here and order unPhiltered online or pick it up at your local book store. If you do I am confident you will be glad you did.

It might even make you Happy, Happy, Happy!

Until next time…

If you like what you read here or just want to see what comes out of my warped mind enter your email address in the sidebar on the left and subscribe. This is the only way to ensure you will be notified immediately whenever a new post is published.

 

Epic

350px-boll_weevil_monumentHistorical, unique, encouraging, refreshing, epic – not words I would normally use to describe a school board meeting in Enterprise. Historical could always be used because the minutes are recorded for history. However, the other adjectives are not normally applicable.

Most board meetings you can look at the agenda, note all items to be voted on, assume they all passed unanimously and you would be accurate almost all of the time. I don’t remember seeing a dissenting vote in the meetings I have attended since the board was reconfigured about two years ago. A City Divided describes that reconfiguration if you need to catch up. Continue reading Epic

What Works 100% of the time?

350px-boll_weevil_monumentOpen Government

Do you know what open government is?

What about transparency in government?

Participation/Collaboration?

Accountability?

I know you are familiar with what these words mean but have you seen your local representative in government (or any other level) operate this way lately? Would you like to?

Let’s take a closer look at these concepts as they relate to those elected to serve in any governmental capacity. These can be applied to any level of government service. Continue reading What Works 100% of the time?

7 Words

Is John 11:35 really the shortest verse in the Bible?350px-holy_bible-300x216

If you are familiar with the Bible I’m sure you’ve heard the shortest verse in the Bible is “Jesus wept” in John 11:35.

I had always thought that was the only verse in the Bible with only two words but recently learned that was not true. There is another verse with only two words.

You have to count characters to determine which is shortest. John 11:35 has two words and 10 characters. I Thessalonians 5:16 has two words and 14 characters.

So there you have it, John 11:35 is the shortest verse in the Bible but you have to go to a character count tie-breaker for confirmation.

Contrasts are interesting

In addition to just the number of words I find the contrast in these two verses interesting.

In John 11:35 Jesus shows us He loved and felt grief just like we do. Lazarus, a close friend of His, had just died and a wave of grief just passed over Him like it does us when we grieve, so Jesus wept.

In I Thessalonians 5:16 we are told to “Rejoice always.” That seems to be in direct conflict or contrast with John 11:35, but is it really?

This does not mean to pray continuously but to pray persistently and consistently. Don’t just use prayer as a crutch or your “help line” when you have exhausted all of your own great, or not so great, ideas. Try it as a first resort. His ideas are greater than ours and prayer helps us learn what those are.

You Can Memorize Scripture

Three very short verses, seven words, and you thought you couldn’t memorize scripture. I am confident if you will just read these three verses a few more times you will have memorized three verses today.

7 Words Verses

 

God Does Not Do Coincidences

God does not do coincidences. He knew what He was doing when he inspired these verses as He did with all the other verses in the Bible. I am not an expositor of scripture and did not stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night but I can draw a couple of thoughts from these three short verses of scripture that make sense to me.

As Christians, if we would practice praying without ceasing that would increase our chances of rejoicing always. If we rejoice always we will even be able to rejoice when a brother or sister in Christ leaves this world and takes up residence in their final home with Jesus. We know they are rejoicing and that helps us to rejoice. However we will also shed a few tears because we are sad they are no longer here with us and we do grieve.

In the end, as Christians, we do have the hope and promise we will see them again one day when we get home.

Do you share this hope?

If you don’t share this hope and would like to learn how you can visit Peace With God and satisfy your curiosity. What you learn there can allow you to begin rejoicing always. You just may be weeping for joy and praying without ceasing will become a real possibility.

Until next time…

Originally published on Peculiar Perspective on 5/2/2015

Pizza and Cheesecake

(Pepperoni Pizza and Plain Cheesecake)

How many times have you either been part of a group or the person responsible for feeding a group when pizza was going to be the main course?

If your experience is anything like mine, “too many to count” would be the answer.

A slice of pepperoni pizza from Blondie's in B...
A slice of pepperoni pizza from Blondie’s in Berkeley, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Think about some of those times when you asked, “What kind of pizza do you like?” Again if your experience is like mine you will get responses like, “I don’t care”, “Anything but anchovies”, “The works”, “Everything but onions”, etc. Sometimes you will hear “Pepperoni” or “Just cheese” but it is often as an afterthought. These are not the real exciting choices or the big stars.

Sound familiar? Well it does to me.

Pepperoni Pizza

However, I have noticed this over the years, and I have done many years worth of research on this – I have eaten a lot of pizza – that when the pizza arrives it is often the plain pepperoni pizzas that are the first to disappear. Why is that?

If you haven’t noticed this before the next time you have pizza with family or a group pay attention and see if you observe the same thing.

Plain Cheesecake

Similarly, if you are a fan of cheesecake and have ever seen a Cheesecake Factory menu you know there are many different variations other than the plain cheesecake offered. Often the last one chosen in just the original plain cheesecake.

Plain cheesecake slice
Plain cheesecake slice (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have to admit I have not done as much research on this…yet…but my theory is if you are at a family or group gathering and have a plain cheesecake and some other variation – chocolate, toasted marshmallows s’mores galore, Godiva chocolate, pineapple upside-down cheesecake or any of the hundreds of other variations – the plain cheesecake will be the first to disappear. Why is that?

I Don’t Know

I wish I had some wise answer as to why this phenomenon occurs but I really don’t. For me and my tastes the pepperoni pizza and plain cheesecake are my favorites so I know why I gravitate toward those when they are made available to me and probably why I notice this phenomenon more than others might.

However, why so many others who seemingly do not prefer these plain or basic choices at least in what they say but do end up participating in making them disappear first I really don’t know.

Tortoise and the Hare?

Could this be another variation on the traditional tortoise and the hare fable – slow and steady wins the race or is that a stretch? The multi-faceted pizza and cheesecake selections would definitely be the more glamorous, flashy, ostentatious, or speedy choices representing the hare. Pepperoni pizza and plain cheesecake would certainly be the less glamorous, mundane and slow choices – the tortoise. Yet, in disappearing first the tortoise wins the race again.

What do you think?

I don’t know if that analogy fits or not so I am hoping you can help me out with this quandary and comment with your explanations or reasoning as to why this occurs or if your experience differs from mine please share yours.

Thanks for stopping by and getting a glimpse of what goes on in my head and please help me clear it up if you can.

Until next time…

If you like what you read here or just want to see what comes out of my warped mind enter your email address in the sidebar on the left and subscribe. This is the only way to ensure you will be notified immediately whenever a new post is published.

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