Monday, July 18, 2016

It's NOT a Crisis

ISIS is not a CRISIS.

This will sound like the most incongruous thing ever uttered by the Colonel -- from a not-so-deep well brimming with the Colonel's unfathomable incongruities -- but hear him out.

The so-called Islamic State is bad news.  Very bad.  Their ideology ranks right up (or down) there with the worst from history's library collection of inhumanities.  

But, ISIS ain't no crisis.

21st Century America, sitting on the beach, well above the high water mark, too timid to touch a toe even in the shallow surf for fear of a micro-aggressive jellyfish, thinks ISIS is a crisis.

But, ISIS ain't no crisis.

Some perspective, please, people.

Thirty years ago, the Colonel -- then a thirty-year-old Captain of Marines -- was earnestly preparing to fight a THERMONUCLEAR WAR with the Soviet Union.  Said preparation involved training to fight afoot through the fog of battle present on a European battlefield macro-aggressed with radioactive fallout, chemical agents, and biological toxins.

That, my friends, is what a real crisis looks like.

Oh, and by the way, by the time the Colonel was training to fight 'em, Soviet leaders had accounted for more dead than a half-dozen Hitlers, leaving very little doubt that the Politburo, ensconced in a bunker deep beneath the Kremlin would have any compunction to push the button.

ISIS is no crisis.

At most, the jihadis are a mild case of jock itch.  Irritating as all get out, but hardly a life-threatening condition.

President Obama was right -- even a broken clock is right twice a day -- when he said that the Islamic State did not pose an existential threat to the citizens of the United States.  They don't.  

The Colonel does not mean to make light of the pain and horror suffered by those targeted by psychopaths inspired by the jihadi jerkdom.  His blood boils with righteous indignation at their every affront to human decency.  Their inhumanity provides a textbook definition of the term.

But, in the grand scheme of things, the Islamic State is little more than a boil on our collective backsides.  Man up, lance it, slap a bandaid on it, and keep on trucking. 

So, can we please stop all the hand-wringing over how we are so frightened to be raising children in this day and age?

Seriously?  Remember "Duck and Cover"?

For those of you whose perspective is challenged by lack of age, "duck and cover" was the nuclear attack drill (in addition to fire drills) for school children of the Colonel's generation.   

For more perspective -- terror attacks have killed less than 100 American citizens on average annually since WWII.  Care to guess how many American citizens die in automobile accidents every year?

The number averages somewhere north of thirty-thousand.  Three zero, zero zero zero.

You thirty-somethings, worrying about raising children today, want to keep 'em safe?  Don't let 'em drive until they have children of their own.  

Want something serious to fret over?

Let's start with how to assimilate the populations of the Southern American Hemisphere when we finally decide it is in all of our best interests to form a pan-hemispheric republic under the Constitution of the United States.       


Saturday, June 25, 2016

Submarines and Sailboats

The not-so-little country church to which the Colonel belongs, here at the shallow northern end of deep southern nowhere, held its annual Vacation Bible School (VBS) this week.

The Colonel spent the week following a group of fifth and sixth grade boys around.

One does not "lead" a group of fifth and sixth grade boys.  Herding cats is a breeze by comparison.  

And, fifth and sixth grade boys aren't going to sit still for flannel graph Bible stories nor willingly participate in dancing and singing.  They would rather be fishing or wrestling or swimming or wrestling or playing sports.

Or wrestling.

So, that's what the Colonel's kids do.  One evening we take 'em fishing and then we tell 'em the story of the Greatest Fisherman (Luke 5, 1 - 8).

Another evening we run 'em through an obstacle course and then we tell 'em the story of the Greatest Warrior (Joshua 5, 13 - 15).

We take 'em swimming and tell 'em about the depths of God's love for them. 

This year, on the first evening we brought 'em out to the Colonel's Man Toy Storage and Sawdust Production Facility and let them put the finishing touches on a submarine silhouette.  They wrote "Submerged in Christ" on the sub, slapped on a couple of coats of polyurethane, and glued a cross on the conning tower.

"Submerged in Christ" became the overarching theme for the week.

You might not think so, but there's a spiritual lesson in comparing submarines to sailboats.

You see, a sailboat rides on top of the water.  The water influences it some, but the wind is the far greater influence.   

A submarine, submerged completely, is influenced only by the water that surrounds all of it.

So, the question becomes: are you a sailboat Christian or a submarine Christian?   

A sailboat Christian floats on a foundation of faith, but is blown hither and yon by the winds of popular opinion, cultural dogma, or political correctness.

A submarine Christian is completely submerged in the will of God as expressed through the teachings of His Son, Jesus.  Submerging in Christ insulates one from the whims of the world.

The Colonel knows it's not a perfect analogy -- nor even a very good one, for that matter.  

But, it worked for fifth and sixth grade boys.


Thursday, June 23, 2016

Playground Politics

The Colonel is absolutely disgusted by the ever-sinking level of political discourse across the Republic.

He has always been uncomfortable with the sophomoric name-calling.  He is dismayed to see normally mature, intelligent fellow citizens become nothing more than nattering nine-year old playground denizens when referring to the political opposition. 

Can we just stop using the following (and their ilk), please?






Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. 

It is beneath us.  Far, far, far beneath us.

Come on, people!  We aren't Venezuela, for crying out loud. 

Can we just stop gleefully cheering on the gutter-crawling, mud-slinging from those who purport to be our leaders?  This ain't a mud-wrestling match, fellow citizens! We are debating the future of our Republic!

The Republic that we are going to leave to our grandchildren.

Speaking of our grandchildren -- if we caught them using the kind of foul, disreputable language that passes for our political discourse today, we would refer them to their parents for appropriate punishment and correction. 

Disagree -- of course.  Just keep out the coarseness.

Forceful defense of your political philosophy -- absolutely.  Just dispense with the ad hominem attacks.

Anyone who disagrees with the Colonel on this is a thumbsuckin', booger-eatin', pants-wetter!