Category: Freedom


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‘Hate Map’ Origins of Racist, Homophobic, and Offensive Tweets

“The picture doesn’t look good for the Eastern states, although admittedly the bulk of the population is there as well. Areas in Virginia, North Carolina,….show up bright red on the map….” —article excerpt.

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Disturbing info, shameful even, since Virginia is my home state. I am a white, heterosexual female of part Irish, Native American, & other undetermined heritage. I am not racist, nor homophobic, but for the life of me do not understand why certain of my relatives & friends are racist/homophobic. I lived thru the 50s-60s when civil rights movements were underway…. I remember picking up hateful kkk papers in our country driveway, and seeing hateful things on the tv news, I remember school integration when I was in 10th grade, and I also remember many dear friends I made as a result of integration…. I do not understand the racist mind process… Is it a fear of the unknown? Did you miss, or not understand, all of Dr. M. L. King’s beautiful speeches?  Different is threatening or fearful to a racist mind…. instead of interesting? People need to celebrate differences, because no two of us is alike… each being unique. I need a racist person to explain to me exactly how skin color impacts anything. It doesn’t. Racism is a learned feeling / attitude without any supporting rationale or basis whatsoever. That ugly habit of feeling hatred can be broken… Just like any other habit.  Seek help to break your addiction to hatred & racism… Replacing that feeling with peace, love, & happiness will cause you & everyone you come in contact with to have a much better life experience.  If you do not know where to turn for help, contact your local Episcopal church for a confidential appointment with a priest.  I trust you will find that meeting very helpful to you.imageA similiar approach can be used to address homophobia. My understanding of homophobes is that their thought process stems from fear & being misinformed,… Afraid it’s contagious… As in a disease or in brainwashing… It is neither.  To confirm this, & putting your fears to rest…. Ask your family doctor about it.  Misinformation, in part is also from fear of the unknown…. Which is human nature in some cases.  If you don’t know any gay people, then it makes it tough to determine just how alien are they relative to you & everyone else in your circle.  Gays are just lika a slice of society…good or bad, moral or amorale, kind or unkind, fat or skinny, etc. ….you get the idea… gay population behaviors = straight population behaviors.  Yet another reason some people do not support equality for gays is due to an erroneous religious belief that being gay is a learned condition that is evil or perverse…. Or a free will choice gone wrong. That belief system my friend, is pure hogwash. Being gay is a natural born condition… Supported by published scientific research. It is not evil or perverse, so you can relax about that…. A gay person is born that way genetically, so you cannot teach ‘straightness’ as a free will choice, ‘reprogram,’ or ‘unbrainwash’ away gayness.  It is simply not genetically, biologically possible.  God made everything, and in ‘his words’ in Genesis he said… He saw all that he’d made, and it was good….gay and/or straight,….all simply expaplained as being the natural variation within the scope of God’s design & creation of the universe. If you need help with your disrespectful & hatred feelings toward gays,…. especially your scriptural confusion… Then contact your local Episcopal church for a confidential appointment with a priest.  I expect you will find much understanding & gain knowledge on this subject that will bring you and your convictions in line with your faith & spiritual journey.
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I invite anyone that may need a place of worship, to attend an Episcopal church in your area…. Because the signs the Epicopal church post state “All are Welcome”….and they mean ALL…all races, gay or straight, male or female, etc… The diversity is beautiful at the Epicopal church.

If you wonder what my beef is in the equality game of equal human rights, then I’ll tell you. As a white minority female in engineering for over 30-years, I have known gender bias, rudeness, & chauvinist pig behavior throughout my career & academic training… As well as, in my Sothern Baptist Church experience where women are considered unequal to men by being forbidden to perform certain tasks.  For example, at most Baptist churches in my experience: a woman could not become a preacher or deacon leader, read scripture to the congregation, perform certain service roles, etc. I had male cousins my age trot off to seminary, yet that door was closed to me.   Not an option. So, when I suggest the Episcopal Chuch as a resource to you,…. it is because I know first hand what hatred & ugly unfairness is all about among the insecure male population of this world… the Epicopalians offer a warm, loving faith community to nurture your heart, mind, & soul. It is a refreshing church to which I belong.
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I feel that my God does not close ANY doors to anyone.

SHE / HE IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY GOD

FOR ALL PEOPLE,..

ON ALL MATTERS,…. AT ALL TIMES.

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The Episcopal Church: Who we are & What we believe; w/Church Finder…

See link: http://www.episcopalchurch.org/find-a-church

VIRGINIA ….56% Support Marriage Equality….Hurrah!!!

“Support for marriage equality is even spreading south of the Mason-Dixon line to Virginia. A recent Washington Post poll found that 56% of Virginians support the freedom to marry — a 10% increase from support in 2011….”

http://www.advocate.com/politics/marriage-equality/2013/05/15/polls-show-pro-equality-majorities-mich-ariz-and-va

~~~~~~~~~~Article Text below~~~~~~~~~~~~~

( Followed by  Full Article & Map below in link. )

Twitter ‘Hate Map’ shows where racist, homophobic, and offensive tweets originateMay 14, 2013
John Koetsier

Students at Humboldt State University in California individually reviewed 150,000 geocoded tweets containing racist, homophobic, or otherwise offensive terms to build a “hate map” indicating where people in the U.S. are most bigoted.Or, at least, where they’re the most open about displaying their antisocial views.

The picture doesn’t look good for the Eastern states, although admittedly the bulk of the population is there as well. Areas in Virginia, North Carolina, Texas, and Alabama show up bright red on the map, as do areas in more central states Indiana, Iowa, and Minnesota.The map is part of a larger project, called the Geography of Hate, by Humboldt State professor Dr. Monica Stephens. The data that forms the map comes from an analysis of every tweet posted between June 2012 and April 2013 that contained at least one of 10 designated “hate words,” including dyke, fag, chink, gook, wetback, and cripple.Source: Hate Map

California seems relatively hate-free

But while the original list of tweets was generated by a machine, every single one of the 150,000 tweets containing one of the target words was individually examined by undergraduate students. As the project description states:
Because algorithmic sentiment analysis would automatically classify any tweet containing “hate words” as “negative,” this project relied upon the HSU students to read the entirety of tweet and classify it as positive, neutral or negative based on a predefined rubric. Only those tweets that were identified by human readers as negative were used in this analysis.
To protect the identity of potentially racist, homophobic, or otherwise bigoted Twitter users, the tweets were aggregated up to the county level, and counties with high levels of hate speech were colored red on the map. Areas with moderate levels — though still higher than the national average — are varying shades of blue, and unshaded areas were below the national average.
Smaller towns seem to have a higher incidence of hate speech — in Virginia, for example, Palmyra is more hateful on Twitter than Richmond. And in Louisiana, New Orleans and Baton Rouge are less hateful than smaller towns nearby.Read more at http://venturebeat.com/2013/05/14/twitter-hate-map-shows-where-racist-homophobic-and-offensive-tweets-originate/#sQLWrohaE5zZUJ08.99

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Although I’m heterosexual, I have gay friends & relatives. If I feel uncomfortable with a conservative Christian “cold shoulder” towards me just for supporting gay rights,…. then how much mistreatment/ intolerance must my gay friends & relatives experience?!? My heart feels for them,… for the insensitivity & negative vibes they must encounter. The “love your neighbor as yourself” verse seems to be forgotten by some conservative Christian folks…. love, kindness, & compassion could help foster tolerance, understanding, & acceptance.

At any rate, as a liberal Christian…. here is a link that references the Episcopal church’s apology, reasons for welcoming LGBT and providing pastoral care:

“In 1997, the General Convention passed a resolution apologizing for past “sins” against gay and lesbian people. It stated:”

“This 72nd General Convention apologizes on behalf of the Episcopal Church to its members who are gay or lesbian and to lesbians and gay men outside the Church for years of rejection and maltreatment by the Church. … This Church repents of its sins committed against lesbian and gay people — physical, psychological and spiritual — through covert and overt action and inaction. We seek amendment of our life together and we ask for God’s help in sharing the Good News with all people.”

http://www.hrc.org/resources/entry/stances-of-faiths-on-lgbt-issues-episcopal-church

Also, there is a religious tolerance website that has a huge amount of biblical scripture references & information on the subject… from both liberal & conservative Christian points of view that might be useful to anyone interested.

At this link: http://www.religioustolerance.org/hom_marj.htm

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♥☼☾☆♫ A CITIZEN’S  APPEAL TO OUR NATION. . . .
To everyone… Leaders, Lawmakers & Citizens,

With all due respect,  I beg you to take action toward our country’s poor state of affairs regarding the lack of gun control in America.

☼The USA NEEDS to please stop the idiocy and START GUN CONTROL as a protective measure for citizens. The seemingly challenged wonders in congress can simply follow what was done by lawmakers in Australia as a guide… It took the Port Arthur slaughter by ONE gunman in Tasmania for Australians to put strict gun control in place…as have many other CIVILIZED NATIONS.. . .

HOW MANY GUNMAN?. . .

HOW MANY DEATHS ARE REQUIRED BEFORE THE U.S. “GETS IT”???????

….Not a math question guys, only a common sense answer of logic & heart is required.

I am ashamed & embarrassed that the USA is so slow to step up to the plate for citizens on this key issue.

Out of curiosity, I attended a gun show once with my husband in Harrisonburg VA. Both of us felt it was a creepy crowd there with a strange, unhealthy vibe. My husband was not easily freaked out either. He was an extreme sports, fearless person at 6-ft5-in tall that was ex-Australian army with horrific military experience of conflicts in Bosnia. He whole-heartedly supports gun control, as do I.

As a hunter with a varied gun collection, Dad always taught us how to use/handle guns properly. Interestingly, he said “the only purpose for a handgun is to kill people, cause it’s not used to hunt animals.”

At a minimum, handguns need to be banned. Perhaps hunters can keep licensed shotguns, rifles, & muzzle loaders. Personally, I feel ALL should be banned but…. a compromise to ban handguns only would be a great move in the right direction.

☾BTW, I grew up in the country, so I know how hunters ‘love’ their guns… Nevertheless, feel you can ‘love’ them just as much at at a legal gun club & target shoot to your heart’s content there… Where guns are controlled & locked down l…. as I understand is done in Australia….

But you miss the chase, you say?… Then get yourself a foxhound, beagle, or whatever hound dog you prefer…and listen to the chase to your heart’s content, without a gun in tow.  If you feel the need for a placebo to help wean yourself, then take along a walking stick & camera.

Need to feed your family, you say?…

Ha, you’re not Daniel Boone & this is no longer frontier land….

You get all your food from the grocery store like I do…except for an occasional deer, turkey, or rabbit,  perhaps… And that’s not exactly helping curb that pesky deer population, now is it? There are varmint traps, & other methods to take care of pesky critter situations.

I cannot think of a single reason why a person cannot accept & live with gun control in America….

Let’s see, how did that go…. “home of the brave,…home of the free”……

The current reality translation of that verse is “home of the INSECURE,

home of the IMPRISONED”….

INSECURE SO-CALLED MEN THAT ARE ESSENTIALLY PARANOID WIMPS,
alternate translation: “clinging onto a gun to feel like a big man”… sorry, but

stupid is very strong amongst lawmakers & citizens opposing gun control….

as a result, innocents are dying all over the country at the hands of licensed/unlicensed guns….to achieve what?….

to support your stupidity & insecure feel good fake manliness!!!!

Additionally….

Good citizens are imprisoned in their own homes for long hours as they watch a swat chase thru their city…

seems to me it’s time everyone realized once and for all….

the WILD WEST IS OVER!!!

Contrary to how some people feel, manliness and freedom have nothing to do with the size of your gun, how many guns you own, or your marksmanship skills.

Freedom is not about the ‘right to bear arms’ like a madman.

Freedom is about the right to live in a society free from fear that you or a loved one will be shot to death by a madman in a random killing spree.

Freedom should include the right to legal gun club access for gun owners.

I often wonder how many innocent lives might have been saved at VA Tech, Sandy Hook, etc…..

if only we’d taken action to put in place a robust gun control system…

I WONDER…
I DREAM…

but to my dismay,

for whatever reason,

lawmakers have not gotten their act together to protect a person”s freedom to stay alive, to enjoy life…

ya know what, I also hope….

I HOPE lawmakers take action NOW to regulate guns for all our sakes…

Without gun control, we are just a negligent nation playing a sick game of ‘Russian roulette’ with innocent lives….

☆LAWMAKERS….
Aren’t the lives of our nation’s children worth anything to you?

This is one citizen that would LOVE to see immediate action by lawmakers to pass strict gun control legislation.

Mr. President, with all due respect, that sure would be an awesome legacy to have associated with your name, don’t you agree!?

I cannot ordinarily predict the future, but in this case it’s safe to say, both you & I know… that we cannot keep living in the current environment & expect the issue to ‘go away’ of its own accord…..

Without  strict gun control in place… sadly, we all are united in this prediction…

senseless murder will happen again….
and again… ad nauseum,
ad infinitum…
to innocent souls in the USA.

//////////////////
///// song lyrics translation: only dirtbags want guns
//////////////////
❥Currently our country’s lawmakers operate  under this intoxicating beautiful
♫”National Anthem”♫  by the lovely Lana Del Rey……
//////////////////

“Money is the reason
We exist
Everybody knows it, it’s a fact
Kiss, kiss
♫.. … . .

It’s a love story for the new age
For the six page
Want a quick sick rampage?
Wining and dining
Drinking and driving
Excessive buying
Overdose and dyin’
On our drugs and our love
And our dreams and our rage
Blurring the lines between real and the fake

Dark and lonely”

❥Lawmaker boys & gals…. Even thru your greedy haze,…..

………. you recognize your anthem’s words below, don’t ya?

“Money is the anthem of success
So put on mascara, and your party dress”

❥. . .and, let’s sing your other song, shall we?…

♫”Home Of The Brave” ♫
“Everything’s gonna be alright boys
Help is on the way
Hold your head up high now
There’s no need to cry now
We’re not running anymore
Leave the politics behind boys
They’re not working anymore
There’s so much more at stake here
It’s make or break here
Haven’t we been here before
Tell me what we’re waiting for
You gotta remember
You don’t have to be afraid
You still have the freedom to learn
And say what you wanna say
You gotta remember
Don’t let ’em take away
The land we call the home of the brave
Who sings the song of the people
You don’t hear it anymore
I heard it late last summer
To the beat of a different drummer
It never sounded quite like this before
So you’re trying to shake this feeling
That trouble’s right outside the door
You lie awake each dark night
Like a time bomb wound up too tight
A storm in waiting just offshore
Tell me what we’re waiting for
You gotta remember
You don’t have to be afraid
You still have the freedom to learn
And say what you wanna say
You gotta remember
Don’t let ’em take away
The land we call the home of the brave
[Instrumental break]
You gotta remember
You don’t have to be afraid
You still have the freedom to learn
And say what you wanna say
You gotta remember
Don’t let ’em take away
The land we call the home of the brave
[repeats 2x]
Songwriters: WILLIAMS, JOSEPH STANLEY/PAICH, DAVID FRANK/WEBB, JIMMY L./LUKATHER, STEVEN LEE/////////// END OF LYRICS ////////////

❥Just  in case you might be still haze impaired….

I’ll help translate,…. This part is critical….

“You gotta remember
You don’t have to be afraid
You still have the freedom to learn
And say what you wanna say
You gotta remember
Don’t let ’em take away
The land we call the home of the brave”
✿❥✿✿❥✿ USA ✿❥✿✿❥✿

♥☼☾☆♫ Bottom line translation….

 You still have the ability to learn a path forward… to make a change in the law to enforce strict gun control across the nation.  That will help stop the madmen from using guns to enslave our basic freedom to live in this “land we call the home of the brave.”

✿❥✿✿❥✿ USA ✿❥✿✿❥✿

FOLLOW Shannyn Moore for additional perspective:

<d♥☼☾☆♫
Shannyn Moore “My Guns Are Less Regulated Than My Uterus”

Preface — My home church family is very dear to me. Any negative feelings I had growing up were not toward individuals….but toward the church doctrine that was/is biased against women. image

🙂 Haha, Ya never know…both football players could be atheists…  I suspect it’s just a hot button ploy to get the other guy to drop the ball… Looks like he’s losing his grip, both  literally & figuratively. 🙂 Thanks go out to Les Norman for sharing this photo. I’m not an atheist but, I know freaky…..nothing turns my stomach more than someone trying to ‘convert’ me to anything… It’s basically saying “here you have no brain, so I must insist you take a chunk of mine”… Hopefully my meaning will be understood in this write-up of feelings/beliefs… It is not my intent to offend anyone.  My words only express my feelings toward the church, not toward any one of you personally. I can understand, having been raised in a southern Baptist church, how that freak mentality can drive one to drink or atheism or whatever… You can tell this is a hot button for me… I just believe people have free will to make up their own minds…. Not my business who believes what…cause I also believe in free speech, religious freedom, and equality for all. image At this point some are thinking but we were commanded to be ‘freaky’…. No, we were not… We were commanded to witness by example & share with respect…. Not assume ignorance and annoy others…. That’s where that phrase …’holier than thou’ originates.    Just assume nothing.  Here’s an example of a wrong assumption from my personal experience…. Pushy freaks I know well……..One of the most insulting was a holy-roller style Baptist preacher that used to yell or speak VERY LOUDLY at the congregation….. that we’re all going to hell…   As a young person it really torqued me… Because he had zero clue what was in my heart, mind & soul… I think that is what imprinted me so strongly that no one really knows another persons constitution. How dare he say that… It struck me as most freaky….. especially since he repeated a worthless version of that sermon every week…. Didn’t he know that you ‘attract more bees with honey?’  If I’d been of age, I’d have never returned to that church.  So, this football player cartoon represents my sentiments exactly regarding annoying freaks.

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I discuss religious/social things in person or on FB with family/friends

….only if they want to truly explore…and not sling mindless off-point misleading posters, quotes, etc….. in general,  I actually avoid hot button topics
( politics, religion, sex are the big topics avoided ).   As you can imagine,  I own my mind and am responsible for my thoughts… Which are my prerogative to change however, & whenever I so choose…, plus there’s no ‘converting’ me to faith nuances that I consider wrong due to logic, interpretation or  published scientific fact.
Imbedded in that native Virginian thought process may also be the question of how it came about that I left the Baptist church.  It’s simpler than you might think, but a bit surprising as well.
Along the way, some have given me the impression they think I’m a brainwashed city slicker traitor for moving from VA to NJ…. I’ll be the first to disagree with that thinking, if it does exist.  The truth is closer to me being a “NJ HillBilly” living just 25-miles outside NYC & working only across the bay in Rahway, NJ (the poor version of the Beverly Hill Billy tv show)….as you can imagine, I have many NJ HillBilly adventures to share 🙂
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Firstly, there were no Baptist churches nearby so for a while I attended various places, then settled on the local Presbyterian church… After moving, a couple of times it became an iterative process which lead me to attend the Episcopal church… Although I participated no differently than if id been a member…. This demanding job change related process left me feeling like I really should settle on & join a home church… I’m talking a long process over years 1984-1994.   When I relocated back to Virginia I immediately joined the Episcopal church, joined the choir, became newsletter editor, etc.  All was well. I felt settled in the church family of my choice plus… A surprise…. I was not required to give up my Flint Hill Baptist Church membership upon becoming Episcopalian… Thus, I retained my membership to the church in which I grew up… HUGE sentimental value for me since I had/ have many family / friends there that I love dearly. It was a win-win situation! 🙂

image image At this point, I remind you the following words are not directed at any of you…simply an expression of MY feelings… of how MY experiences made me feel forward these churches……please do not take personal offense at my descriptor words as they are not based on a single individual OR church…. Multiple church basis of only my personal experiences….
Southern Baptist Church =
racial bigots, ………male & female chauvinist pigs, ….fearful, ……literal,
‘stupid is strong’ since females are not equal, females forbidden to preach, females forbidden to be a deacon /leader, rare to hear a female read scripture in service ( ok in Sunday school, but not in service?)……    fearful of research/opinions/discussion/ learning/ growth, loud, irreverent & suffocating environment,…..closed minded… You get my picture…….seriously, the wording above is just IMO in reaction to how I have been treated OR to things I witnessed that happened to others.

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Episcopal church =
warm, ……inviting, …….accepting, ……caring ….loving …..mindful….. compassionate….
kind…… science & bible are not mutually exclusive…
ALL welcome….any race, creed, color, nationality, female, male, straight, gay, old, young, fat, skinny, uneducated, educated, you name it=welcomed
Supports diversity & equality, independent thought, open to discussion….
Calm not loud, reverent, meditative…..
Sugar & spice & everything nice….
Got issues don’t I?…..LOL…..
       You betcha…but…..don’t we all?
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Yet another surprise regarding my church membership….
After a year or so of dual membership, my father ( a deacon leader ) got wind of it somehow and basically ‘read me the riot act’…said that I “play the wild” by belonging to more than one church….  I disagreed because I saw no reason why I could not belong to both… Is there a limit on how many churches a person can have?…a parent might be concerned that their child did not go to church… But to have one too many, what’s up with that? I did not see his point & he did not see mine…this went unresolved for days, weeks, a few months… At first I thought he’d forget about it, and I’d surely never mention it… I put me in a tight spot… Fat chance of that, cause it became his checklist greeting question with every phone call  & every time I went home to visit…”have you decided”….. image

 My thoughts/beliefs/faith best fit the Episcopal church,…. yet so many people I love belong to that specific church… There I go again with that thought of females being worthless to the Baptist church, or feelIng that somehow my freaky self should have never explored various church doctrines…. Should I compromise myself and find yet another Baptist church to attend, or give up my sentimental silliness…or do nothing and keep both, no harm in that…. It took 6-8 weeks to wrestle my thoughts & feelings to a path forward.  Ultimately, tearfully… I sent a letter of resignation to Flint Hill Baptist…. I’d decided that it was more important to honor my father’s wishes out of love & respect for him… That membership did not mean nearly as much to me, as it did to resolve the issue with him.  To this day, I feel happy with my decision… I only wonder what took me so long? 🙂 …it was simply my ‘leave no stone unturned’ mentality that I’d figure out a solution where I’d get to keep both… Also called hardheaded, knuckle-headed, stubborn, persistent silly over thinking self… At least I can laugh at myself about it now… I only mention it because it is a good example of 2 people feeling passionately about opposite views on something very insignificant.

The fact that I’m a born again believer is all God cares about with respect to my soul.  God does not care which church I attend nor where my membership(s) reside…. Nor if any other person ever knows what i believe…and vice versa…. It is a very private, personal relationship that is one on one between an individual and God.  It is not anyone else’s business but your own.  Luckily, we have the protection of religious freedom.   Hope you realize, i use the term ‘freak’ in jest… IMO They are misguided, misunderstood over enthusiastic souls acting with or without respect.  At least that’s my understanding.

imageimage As you may now realize, an alternate hot button word in my mind  is FORBIDDEN….  I was told thru out high school by my father that I would not be going to college… Nevertheless I stayed on my academic college-bound track.   Each time the subject of course selection came up, I braced for another battle over taking typing…. But I had no room in my course load for it… Plus I already knew how to type via my mother’s typewriter.  So, I felt I was forever the disobedient daughter for not taking his suggestion… But decided I was not about to drop math, French , science for typing…

imageEventually it culminated in my being flat out forbidden to go to college, since we were poor & the only suitable career recommended to me by my father did not require 4-yrs of college…. It was the kind of disagreement that had only one answer back from me…. Needless to say, it was dramatic: “watch me, I’m 18yo & you can’t stop me” …. I  left home at age 18 for college & graduate school with help from scholarships, student loans & work-study programs…. & pursued a career in science &engineering. image Overall, my father & I shared many similarities & differences that I feel others do not understand.  Firstly, our looks are similar as are our personalities, storytelling,  love of sweets (chocolate, peppermint,watermelon), gardening, dogs, horses, chickens, nature, ‘dissecting’  (as creature wound treatment or food prep ) curiosity as to how things work, both jokesters… Too many to list here.  However, our differences were less but significant… Role of women in society/church, other social/philosophical issues… Including his belief  ‘spare the rod, spoil the child’ which I felt was unnecessarily harsh, even though my smart-mouth coupled with boundless curiosity may have placed his discipline skills in question… At least to my mind.  As the years passed he created many homemade ‘farm’ original mechanical designs, performed electrical wiring at the house/barn… He could build many things, & did… Never realizing that he was an engineer at heart… I’d tell him about the industrial equipment adventures I experienced and he actually seemed to enjoy my work stories… Over time I realized we both had changed, mellowed, accepted… I think he realized it too… And choose to believe that is why he made that family apology at Thanksgiving… Also he was finally able to eat a meal in a Japanese restaurant after more than 60years after returning from that awful pacific campaign in WWII…. My father was a key influence  on my thoughts toward religion, science, engineering, honor, integrity, & respect …without either realizing it until later …probably since we were more alike than our stubborn selves cared to admit.

image image I’m not sure if this makes sense or not… Difficult to explain since the  ‘freak’ image relates to my church history, which relates to the history of my relationship with my father, and relates to school & career choices… All in one giant melting pot….  My mother played a huge role too, but I deliberately left her out of this writing… I will mention her influence was equal to Dad’s… she had a 2-yr business college degree by age 21  & a sensitive artistic nature in creating many things. image I hope I’ve explained it all well enough to be understood …one final observation is that like my father I notice minuscule insignificant “curiosities” of sights & sounds…a country perceptive way possibly.   We differ in how we process, interpret  & store all that extra data.. I do not know the formula for it… He processed it or reflected on it by being outdoors…hunting, gardening, builing farm things etc.  I did some outdoor actives too, plus art & music …the best way to describe it is like my iPad & iPhone ….when Dad & I were in sych our thoughts meshed perfectly on issues… But when out of sych, we had a terrible time communicating from different pages of thought…. He as a parent/ adult, and me as a child/teen/adult , struggled on parallel paths throughout life’s journey.  I feel that is, more or less,  how it  goes for everyone… The sum total of your experiences contribute to your various beliefs… And, it is nearly impossible to capture how it shaped your path exactly.  Also, difficult for me/others to explain since it covers feelings of faith, love, hope, forgiveness on a spiritual, philosophical & intellectual level. image image ~~~ The End ~~~ image                 “The soul would have no rainbow if the eyes had no tears.” —Laurel Burch