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« July 2012 | Main | September 2012 »

Front Page » Monthly Archives » August 2012

By Angelo Lopez on August 27, 2012

The Obama Presidency has been a very interesting and dramatic time. During the 2008 elections, the economy went through its worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. The Arab Spring has erupted across the Middle East, as the populace has gone to the streets to assert its rights against various oppressive governments in the region. Iran continues to cause trouble as it tries to develope the capacity to create nuclear power. In our own country the major political development has been the rise of the Tea Party and the shift in the Republican Party towards the extreme Right. During these past few years, many Progressives have been disappointed at Obama's attempts at trying to reach a middle ground with Republicans as he tried to pass major legislation on health care, climate change, financial regulations, immigration reform, and economic relief for average Americans going through home foreclosures and unemployment. I have to admit to being disappointed at times too with Obama, though I can't blame him for trying to reach out to Republicans. It's tough for me to really judge Obama's Presidency just because the Republicans in Congress during the past 4 years have been so obstinately opposed to almost every Obama initiative. This has been the result of the efforts by conservatives to marginalize or kick out the moderates in the Republican Party, and the loss of influence of moderate Republicans in the GOP has been bad for both the Republican Party and the political discourse in our country.

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By Ken Poland on August 21, 2012

Yes, Mrs. Romney, I'm a small minded person. I don't have a genius level IQ. But, I'm not stupid, nor am I unaware of man's ability to cover up misdeeds. When your husband aspires to be President of the United States of America, he had best be aware that his business and personal dealings are open to public disclosure and scrutiny. Starting the game of life on third base (inherited wealth and status) doesn't give him an automatic score! And, if he plans to stay in the game, he'll have to try making it to the home plate, face the pitcher, the umpires will call the strikes, and he'll have to run the bases. Neither can he depend on his ‘designated hitter’ (vice pres.) to make all the hard plays. He might just have to prove his ability and earn the right to be on the team.

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By Angelo Lopez on August 13, 2012

Lea Lyon is one of the most interesting people that I know. I met her a few years ago at a conference for the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, an organization for professionals and aspiring writers and illustrators of children's books. For several years now, Lea has been organizing Illustrators Day once a year in San Francisco, where professional and aspiring illustrators can get together to socialize and show their art and to listen to publishers, editors and award-winning children's book illustrators. Lea has been interested in art since she was a child, learning to paint in oil when she was 11 years old. After raising a family, running a small doll and puppet business, and working in the corporate world, Lea concentrated on her life long dream of becoming a children's book illustrator. She is a portrait painter, painting teacher, and award winning children's book illustrator, with her illustration portfolios won awards twice at SCBWI National Conferences. Among her illustrated books are The Miracle Jar by Audrey Penn, Keep Your Ear On The Ball by Genevieve Petrillo, Playing War by Kathy Beckwith, Say Something by Peggy Moss, and Operation Marriage by Cynthia Chin-Lee.

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By Diane Wahto on August 12, 2012

In the midst of the nasty, negative political campaigns raging across the United States, the good people at NASA landed a new Mars rover called Curiosity. The goal of the rover mission, run through NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory, if four-fold: “investigation of the Martian climate, geology, and whether Mars could have ever supported life, including investigation of the role of water and its planetary habitability.”

Curiosity was launched from Cape Canaveral on Nov. 11, 2011, headed for Aeolis Palus in Gale Crater on Mars. It landed on August 6, 2012. The landing itself was full of suspense, as this type of landing had never been attempted. It was successful and as soon as Curiosity got its sea legs, it started broadcasting pictures of the Mars landscape back to earth.

The pictures look much like an earthly desert landscape. Beyond the pictures, however, Curiosity will gather scientific data to add to that already compiled by Spirit/Opportunity and Sojourner, the other rovers sending information from Mars.

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By Angelo Lopez on August 6, 2012

Thanks Ken. Good insights. When I wrote my blog on the Nuns on the Bus, I googled Christian Women Social Activists and kept finding more interesting info that could be made into blogs. Coretta Scott King is as much a hero as her husband. I like your last sentence:

"What they did advocate was the right of all individuals to enjoy the freedom of choice and right to participate in self determination of their beliefs and aspirations."

By Ken Poland on August 5, 2012

Thanks again, Angelo, for your choice of champions for the progressive and, so called, liberal advocates in the political & social arena of today.

Corretta Scott King has been a solid spokesman for the civil rights of all. Neither she nor her husband, Martin, came across as being extremist or radical in their presentation. Yes, they had radical opinions and ideas that were presented at the right time and for the right purposes. Thier poise and steadfast dedication to the causes they championed were a great source of strength and motivation for others to stand up and be counted.

The color of their skin gave them a unique perspective on the injustice of the social norms and systems that had persisted in society. They took advantage of opportunity for education that many in society, regardless of ethnic or economic inheritance, never had. I don't think they were driven by any thing other than a deep heart felt compassion for justice, freedom, and respect for all persons in society. I believe they had a true devotion to their God and Saviour, Jesus Christ. But that didn't give them the authority to judge all others and demand they profess the same theology and doctrine as they did. They, certainly, encouraged others to accept their God and Saviour, but if others didn't, they still demanded equal protection under the laws of our nation, regardless of color or social standing.

I don't recall any reports of their being disrepectful to their adversaries nor of their claiming any special dispensation from their God to declare His judgment on others, who didn't adhere to the King's idea of justice and freedom of all God's 'chosen' people. I don't recall ever reading or hearing that they endorsed or condemned other's choice of sexual orientation or religious affiliation. What they did advocate was the right of all individuals to enjoy the freedom of choice and right to participate in self determination of their beliefs and aspirations.

By Angelo Lopez on August 4, 2012

Martin Luther King Jr. is justifiably viewed as a hero by many people around the world. He's been one of my biggest heroes. One of the great heroes that is often overlooked is his wife, Coretta Scott King. Coretta Scott King is a strong civil rights leader in her own right, as well as an outspoken advocate of women's rights, the peace movement, the anti-apartheid movement, a foe of capital punishment, and an opponent of the Iraq War. King's efforts to end the Vietnam War led the FBI to keep surveillance on her from 1968 to 1972. Due to her efforts in promoting education, the American Library Association began in 1970 to award a medal named for Coretta Scott King to honor outstanding African American writers and illustrators of children's literature. In 2006, the Jewish National Fund announced the creation of the Coretta Scott King Forest in the Galilee region of Northern Israel to commemorate King's work for equality and peace. This blog will showcase some youtube videos that highlight Coretta Scott King's work for social justice

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