Vanity of Vanities
Police, fire protection, schools, prisons, child welfare, etc. can be taken care of by local city/county governments. No need for me to fund middle man jobs in OKC when, if I so wish, I can fund them here in Tulsa, and with better oversight and control of what the money is spent on and how its spent. Why on earth would I or anyone else want to spend 160 million to fix the Capitol building? The state doesn't exist to spend money on vanity projects. It supposedly exists to take care of those services mentioned above and do so in the most cost effective, efficient and effective, way possible. I bet it would cost less money to build a new building that would house the work that goes on in that Capitol building, and maintain it, than it would to repair the old one. Not to mention a lot of the people could be moved to some of the other buildings already at the Capitol complex, and add to that any money gained from selling off the old property to help reduce costs. If that's the case, then that danged well better be what is done. We aren't paying these people to sit around in some Emperors grandiose palace, they are there to do a job, again, in the least expensive and most effective way possible, period. THAT would be a conservative government I could be proud of, THAT would be a conservative state I could be proud of. I don't need a fancy building, representing a vain wasteful liberal government imo, as some false stand in for that.
--William A. Franklin
Many people if not most are willing to approve or do some morally repugnant or evil thing to some innocent person who never hurt them, in the name of some favorite principle. For example, the Tuskegee Experiment, where poor black men with syphilis in Tuskegee, Alabama, were offered "free health care" but left untreated so the Doctor(s) involved could study the progression of the disease. Then there was the Eugenic Sterilization Law of North Carolina, where poor women, especially blacks, were sterilized after the second birth out of wedlock, as means to restrict the numbers of both welfare babies and black children. There is our own military's concept of "acceptable collateral damage" in places like Iraq and Afghanistan. During the war in Viet Nam, a woman where I lived stated that it was good to kill Vietnamese babies because they would just grow up to kill our soldiers. The U.S. Calvary did just that with Native American babies at Wounded Knee. The Irish Sisters of the Magdalene Order enslaved about 30,000 young girls who were raped, illegitimate, orphaned, pregnant out of wedlock, or just simple-minded, in chastisement for their "sins". The girls' families often agreed.
The last place I worked in Stillwater, a couple of coworkers would get together and mutter imprecations about homosexuals until the air turned black and blue. I don't think they could tell the difference between homosexuals and child molesters. There are any number of liberals who want to throw in jail anyone who disagrees with their gun control politics. There are court decisions all the way up to the Supreme Court that left innocent people languishing in jails or on death row because of some technical objection to accepting new evidence and letting them go.
And the list goes on.
What if there was some way to tell if a woman was at a higher than normal risk of birthing a child with either Down's Syndrome or a child likely to die of SIDS. Now suppose that Oklahoma passes a law stating that this woman can be denounced by her doctor and forced by court order to have her tubes tied until she agrees to abort any unborn child that could be shown to be likely to experience either Down's or SIDS. In other words, until she proves that she is in no danger of having and raising that kind of child, and thus "inflicting" it on the rest of society. The old Spartans, after all, were said to kill any baby that wasn't perfect. The White Power skinheads might like it, but I think that most decent people on both the right and the left would agree that such a law would be evil and morally repugnant.
I say that there's not much moral difference between that kind of law and the Oklahoma Mental Health Code, by which anyone with a mental illness can be denounced, even by just hearsay, and sent off to the local loony bin, without any full and impartial investigation by local authorities. And kept there until that person can prove the negative, that he or she is not a danger, to mental health "professionals" who have nothing but their own prejudices and self-interest to decide who is and is not a danger.
No Middle Ground Revisited
What I am concerned about (See "Modern Spirituality," April 12-18, Vol. 21, No. 42)is the extreme narrow-mindedness that seems to be so prevalent from time to time. I have personally observed that almost everyone has a unique 'spirituality' and code of conduct--that is, no two people have the exact same set of morals. Anyone who believes there is only one peaceful or correct way to worship and find spiritual equilibrium, I would consider blistering ignorant. There is no right/wrong spirituality based on what type of depths of their subconscious a person refers to for their morals; only whether they are helpful or harmful to society--this is the only aspect where there is no middle ground.
--Shane L. Byler
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