POSTED ON MARCH 17, 2010:
Love Letters/ Hate Mail
In God (the States) Trust
(In response to RCL27's letter, "God and Mammon," in the March 4-10 issue of Urban Tulsa Weekly.)
Ry Cooter's 1970 song has Teddy Roosevelt saying "you can go to your college, you can go to your school, but if you ain't got Jesus, you're just an educated fool and that's all..."
RCL 27's education at Cornell University demonstrates this point. He begins his letter with the words "As an atheist just wanted to make a couple comments [sic]..." then proceeds to suggest that his education at Cornell proved to him that Biblical Faith had little to do with the founding of America or with America's founding fathers, Jefferson in particular.
Now, even Ezra (the name of an Old Testament prophet) Cornell, the namesake of his university, believed in God and wrote, "all students must be left free to worship God..." So far as we know, Jefferson was indeed a deist, one of perhaps two or three of our founding fathers who were not Christians, and the other one was Benjamin Franklin who, when there was gridlock at the Constitutional convention, made the following statement; "how has it happened, Sir, that we have not hitherto once thought of humbly applying (praying) to the Father of lights to illuminate our understandings? ... I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth -- that God governs in the affairs of men."
But consider these words and actions of Thomas Jefferson: "God who gave us life, gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God?" He asked Congress to ratify a treaty with the Kaskaskia Indians, on Dec. 3, 1803. Stating "And whereas the greater part of the said tribe have been baptized...the United States will give annually, for seven years, one hundred dollars toward the support of a priest...[&] the United States will further give the sum of three hundred dollars to assist the said tribe in the erection of a church." Every President acknowledged a Supreme Being in their address upon assuming office. For example, Thomas Jefferson referred to "That Infinite Power which rules the destinies of the universe..." Inscribed on the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C., are Thomas Jefferson's words: "Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the Gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath? Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that His justice cannot sleep forever."
America's founders did not intend for there to be a separation of God and state, as shown by the fact that all 50 states acknowledged God in their state constitutions (here are just a few of them, including the states that border Oklahoma):
Alabama 1901, Preamble: "We the people of the State of Alabama ... invoking the favor and guidance of Almighty God, do ordain and establish the following Constitution..."
Alaska 1956, Preamble: "We, the people of Alaska, grateful to God and to those who founded our nation and pioneered this great land..."
Arkansas 1874, Preamble: "We, the people of the State of Arkansas, grateful to Almighty God for the privilege of choosing our own form of government..."
Colorado 1876, Preamble: "We, the people of Colorado, with profound reverence for the Supreme Ruler of Universe..."
Oklahoma 1907, Preamble: "Invoking the guidance of Almighty God, in order to secure and perpetuate the blessings of liberty..."
New Mexico 1911, Preamble: "We, the People of New Mexico, grateful to Almighty God for the blessings of liberty..."
Texas 1845, Preamble: "We the People of the Republic of Texas, acknowledging, with gratitude, the grace and beneficence of God..."
Wyoming 1890, Preamble: "We, the people of the State of Wyoming, grateful to God for our civil, political, and religious liberties..."
These are some facts that RCL27's Cornell University education seem to have omitted. This is not surprising. Biblical Faith has been at the crosshairs of American higher education for a long time now but here's a prediction: God will be around long after Harvard, Cornell, Princeton and many other once great American universities, most of which were founded to propagate the Biblical Faith, are faint memories. Another challenge for RCL27: name some of the great universities, institutions, hospitals, social causes or great nations that have been founded in the name of atheism! (How about just one? Fact: there are none.)
Not the Right Plan
(In response to "Orbit This" in the March 4-10 issue of Urban Tulsa Weekly)
"We're broke, and we invest unwisely."
I agree with that, but not much else.
There seems to be a humongous concern with pedestrians. I like to walk to places, but pedestrianism can only be a byproduct of business location. A business scouting locations must want people to be able to walk to it as part of their business plan for "more pedestrian availability" to occur. A friend of mine once said "if you want more business downtown, put parking meters in mall parking lots; that'll even out the disincentives." And those roads that Mr. Jamieson bemoans "lead out of Tulsa" also lead into Tulsa. "Enough road infrastructure to serve a city with twice our population" means "we have about half the traffic hassles of an average city our size" to me.
Public transportation: How about licensing jitneys, a cross between taxis and free-roaming buses, carrying several people at once to varying locations? They work well where they've been tried. Zoning? I admit it was a couple decades ago that I read that Dallas has zoning and Houston has none, and Houston seemed none the worse for it.
I'm glad a lot of people worked on PLANiTULSA, and I hope good things come of it.
The city as it is works well enough for me, although synchronizing traffic signals on several main thoroughfares would smooth out traffic flow for greater efficiency. Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills/Los Angeles had signs stating "signals set for 35mph" in the late '40s, and in moderate traffic you could drive quite smoothly to your destination.
Not So Nice Looking
Yo...Say, Whas Sup? Has anyone been by the recently renovated Outdoor Cafe sorta who dittie at 19th and Riverside Drive? I think the Blue Rose people took it over. Anywho...orginally they had it painted a refreshing and delightful Light Blues with some dark blues for contrast. Very appealing and nice.
Then from what I gathered after talking to some people repainting it, the City of Tulsa Folks objected to the Blue. So they painted it Dirty Diapers Red...and oh sure it Blends in with the other buildings...except for the bathroom which is pure junkie trash looking still.
But honestly, what's wrong with a structure standing out just a little and has a very attracting look?
They need to do something about those bathrooms...Nasty!
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