Not Long Tales … September 3rd, 2019

Jonathots Daily Blog

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The Great Debate.

As the critics and advocates tumbled and tussled over the issue of gun control, an innovation quietly made its way onto the world stage. It silenced the controversy about guns because it was not considered a weapon. It was touted as beneficial and given a clever, almost cute name: The Blaster.

Privately, for years the American government had been working on a nuclear hand-held device. Though it was initially considered impossible to control a fission reaction held in the human hand, the well-funded research nevertheless persisted, energized by much money.

It was unveiled as a simple climate-friendly way to dispose of waste, clean up after a hurricane or even quickly eliminate unwanted foliage in building of new communities.

It had a companion device called “Clean Boy.” Even though The Blaster itself emitted low-level radiation within the acceptable range of human exposure, Clean Boy was manufactured to make sure that any work done with The Blaster would leave the region free of the fear from radiation sickness.

The Blaster seemed ideal for disposing trash from an area since it only covered a twelve-foot radius, leaving whatever was in its path a pile of ash and dust. As often is the case, for a brief season it was used exactly for what it was conceived to address.

That was, until the Holy City Massacre.

Blasters, which were supposed to be highly regulated and kept out of the hands of criminals or the uninformed were suddenly used at a mass shooting in Jerusalem, killing over four thousand pilgrims and annihilating several of the holy sites.

Of course it was a shock to everyone’s system. But over the years there had been so many mass shootings that no one considered The Blaster, with its nuclear implications, to be that much worse than other atrocities.

What was once considered an American problem had, over the years, been translated into every language and culture. Even though the United States wished to export democracy and freedom, it ended up transporting death and mayhem. So the debate about The Blaster was similar to the arguments over assault weapons.

But there was a man who lived in Winesca, Iowa, named Dylan Cavanaugh. Fifteen years before The Blaster came onto the scene, Dylan and his wife realized that the thirst to kill and the appetite to hear about it on the nightly news was too strong to stop the insanity.

When the ban on assault weapons was lifted, Dylan and his wife journeyed to Wyoming, where they found a parcel of land with a mountain and purchased it, using some inheritance money Dylan had acquired from his mother and father.

The couple set off to change their world. Every summer (and actually, every chance they got to get away) they prepared a way of escape. Even when four daughters arrived, Dylan and his wife, Crenslo (whom he called Crennie) went to Wyoming to their dreamscape and made plans—intricate plans.

Dylan was a licensed electrician, but he also was an inventor. He had manufactured a special battery for an electric minibus which had solar panels in its roof and large storage spaces in the sides. It seated eleven counting the driver.

Shortly after the Holy City Massacre, Dylan gathered his family together and explained his plan. “I do not want to scare you, or maybe I should say I don’t want to scare myself, but because of the atrocity in Jerusalem, it seems to me that half the world is anticipating the wrath of God and the other half is ready to bring it. I’m going to ask you to trust me. For the time being, and for further notice, we are going to our property in Wyoming, which we have prepared as a living space, until I am certain that I can offer you a safe home here in Iowa.”

The girls stared at him in disbelief. Each one had a life in the small Hawkeye town. But Dylan had succeeded, both as a human being and as a father, to build trust with his children. So Clancy, age fifteen, Roberta, thirteen, Sharon, eleven, and Caroline, nine, climbed into the electric minibus and made the journey with their parents to Wyoming. There was sadness, intrigue and just enough distraction along the way from trying various treats at gas stops to keep them engaged and hopeful.

Upon arriving, the young ladies got to see their mother and father’s vision. Carved into the mountain were a series of caves, fully lit and even decorated—enough openings and rooms to house fifty people. On the mountain itself were thousands of solar panels, providing enough energy—especially with Dylan’s new battery technology—to keep them warmed or cooled for months.

They spent the whole first month learning how to shoot a bow and arrow. No guns were allowed, but there was a need to gather food. Dylan had brought a computer, and also a ham radio setup so he could stay in contact with society. Still, the rest of Earth seemed far away from the Wyoming outpost.

About two months in, the Internet disappeared, and the radio went silent. The girls watched as their father cried and their mother joined him. They weren’t certain what the tears were for, but they contributed a few of their own.

At that point, Papa Dylan began going off in the minibus for days at a time. Upon returning, he always had one, two, and once, five people along with him. Each one had a story, each story more terrifying than the one before.

Dylan made his journeys for about six months. He ceased them once he stopped coming back with human folk. All in all, there were 43 people who found refuge in the vision of Dylan and Crennie.

One day, when it was pretty certain who was who and what was what, Dylan made a short speech. “I have not given up on the Earth. But right now, I want to make sure that we don’t give up on each other. I know each one of us saw lots of movies about the Apocalypse and the destruction of the Earth. In those flicks, the survivors always ended up killing each other.” He looked around, then joked, “Maybe it was because they were all zombies.” Everyone laughed. It was good to laugh.

He continued. “There are going to be three jobs in our little home. Those who gather the food, those who cook the food and those who clean up. Each one of us will learn how to do all the jobs. We’ll alternate. There will only be three—well, I guess we can call ’em rules. Love your neighbor, do your work, learn something new every day.”

The other 42 people who had gathered for the little speech smiled, shed a quick tear over loss and then turned to one another and embraced. Dylan found Crennie and kissed her lovingly on the lips.

Clancy, the oldest daughter, looked across the room at a boy named Zach.

She thought he was cute.

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G-Poppers … June 15th, 2018

Colin Kaepernick.

Here’s a young fellow who chose to protest alleged use of irrational violence by the police department against young black men. His method of objection was very simple:

He was a football player, so when the National Anthem was performed, he refused to stand, but at first sat, and eventually, along with many others, took a knee during the Francis Scott Key.

It was harmless.

Unfortunately, it became quite a row when capitalism and democracy were unleashed from their cages to wrestle with one another.

G-Pop wants you to understand that the two don’t get along. Democracy contends that individual citizens have the freedom to express themselves without inhibition.

Capitalism places the entire significance of its purpose in its name–capital. Money is the reason, money is the means, money is the passion and money is the bottom line.

So G-Pop found himself in an interesting situation two nights ago while having dinner with friends. Having not given adequate thought on this battle between capitalism and democracy, G-Pop stated that he felt the decision to forbid the protest of these excellent athletes was a sham and would eventually be perceived as a national shame.

G-Pop spoke too soon.

As long as we continue to have a democracy that is acted out through capitalism, those who work for the corporation will need to honor the tenets, principles and concepts of the company–even if they feel it deters from their freedoms.

Every day, each one of us sacrifices a little choice so we can be part of a bigger unit.

We do so because of money.

We do so fearing that launching too much on our own, without financial prospects, will leave us broke and busted instead of a fine bloke who’s trusted.

It’s really quite simple.

As long as Mr. Kaepernick was “Colinizing” an idea with his friends, to project their disagreement, and the National Football League was NOT insisting they follow any particular code, it was beautiful, totally sane and within the bounds of reason.

But when President Trump challenged the owners of the NFL to make the “knee salute” a profile against the policy of the National Football League, capitalism won over freedom.

Pardon the pun, but Colin and his buddies had no leg to stand on.

It was nasty.

It was plotted.

And it turned what could have been a dynamic discussion into a wicked slap on the wrist in the principal’s office.

G-Pop was wrong.

Capitalism–the pursuit of capital–will always trim back democracy, the insistence on freedom.

So Colin and his “Colinizers” will have to find a different way to protest. G-Pop is completely confident they will.

But until they do, let us not make it an issue of patriotism, but rather, conclude correctly that it is merely patronizing the bottom line.

 

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Good News and Better News… July 3rd, 2017

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Freedom.

It is the best America has to offer.

It is the finest export to the world around us.

Because it hearkens to the freewill the Creator gave every human, it is the voice of God in a world of devilishness.

It is slightly weakened by the application of democracy. Although the voting concept seems intelligent, it still concludes that the majority rules. The assumption that the majority is always right–or ever right–is historically erroneous.

So freedom, which is a purity hatched in the heavens, is tainted by democracy, which allows for the sheer brute force of numbers.

For that reason, democracy does not work in every country. Freedom, which has a universally healing effect, can often be destroyed by inserting democracy into nations which are ill-suited for the process because they are surrounded by intimidating forces.

And then there’s politics. Politics is what democracy produces in an attempt to create balance, which ironically, actually imbalances everything. It no longer is an issue of what’s right or wrong or what might be a valid issue, but rather, what your political party supports and how you can also support it.

In no time at all, we lose the individuality of having one stance on a single issue and a different angle on another. Just the removal of politics would make democracy work better, and democracy would work beautifully if it kept its eye on freedom for all.

241 years ago, our fathers brought forth on this continent a piece of rebellion. It wasn’t a country and certainly wasn’t based solely on freedom, because many of the inhabitants of that nation were thought of as inferior.

It was a piece of rebellion.

It now becomes our job to turn it into freedom that can function as a democracy without the burden of politics.

The good news is that God loves freedom.

The better news is that if we will commit to good reason, we will never miss politics.

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Ask Jonathots … December 29th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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I am so frustrated. What happened in 2016??

Well, I’m not quite certain of your particular frustration, or what crosses your mind as a grievance concerning the year.

But certainly overall, the United States abandoned its sense of “civil” rights. In pursuing rights it is essential we maintain a civil attitude.

Somewhere along the line it became more important to chase down an agenda or voice opinions of opposition than to find ways to peacefully coexist and respect one another.

In the process, we had a lot of shouting without having any real interaction.

  • It became important to be right.
  • It was essential to win.
  • It was a game to degrade your opposition.
  • And it was considered fair play to dig up dirt and heap it on your opponent.

Because we humans are susceptible to selfishness, once we realized that our leaders were participating in playground antics, we felt the freedom to lessen our general toleration while increasing our volume.

It created a caustic environment.

So all the political parties, all the religions, and all the intellectuals who were supposed to guide us in ways of structured sensibility, instead became armed forts, where rocks were thrown across the chasm.

This will only change when we return to civil ways to establish our rights.

So what is civility?

1. It is impossible for me to completely be right.

I am human and therefore not only capable, but susceptible to error.

2. Listening means shutting up.

There is no such thing as listening with one ear as you prepare your speech to contradict your enemy.

3. Treat every human with the respect and reverence you would give to God.

If you don’t believe in God, treat every human like you would your mother.

4. Be fully aware that in a democracy you will need to include other people who have lifestyles and ideas which are completely opposed to your own.

If it isn’t killing anyone, you will have to learn to adapt.

5. Practice kindness whenever you can.

In other words, if there are going to be conflicts, we need to also have many moments of gentleness in between, or we will start bashing each other instead of learning to enjoy one another.

In 2016, rights became more important than civility.

It was not merely a liberal problem nor a conservative problem. It became universal.

Help change 2017 by making sure that the way you express your opinion is just as respectful as the passion with which you proclaim it.

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G-Poppers … October 28th, 2016

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“A storm,” says G-Pop.

  • Certainly everybody gets wet.
  • Some souls are frightened by the lightning.
  • Others are chilled by the thunder.
  • The wind blows a portion away.
  • And many suffer under the devastation–loss of heart and home.

When the storm ceases, the healing needs to begin.

In what should have been a celebration of our democracy, our unity and our abiding purpose, the 2016 Presidential campaign has been a storm which has swept across our land, terrifying the citizens. Even those who prided themselves on being resilient, or were accustomed to boarding up their feelings to protect themselves from the onslaught, have been shocked by the fury of the blast.

It is certain that November 9th will still usher in a season of great conflict which will require sane people of hope and faith to step in and restore healing.

What will the healing be? The removal of complexity, providing a path to simplicity.

We will have to stop being Republicans, Democrats, old, young, people of color, white, poor or rich, and instead, nurture ourselves on the beliefs that have eternal power and everlasting worth.

G-Pop has decided to be a contributor to the common good. It doesn’t make him special–but it does make his mission purposeful.

Three treatments will be necessary to set in motion the remission from stupidity and the beginning of restoration:

1. Love your neighbor as yourself.

There’s no replacement for it. “No one is better than anyone else” is not a slogan, but rather, a constant reminder that attempting to find differences stymies commonality.

2. Take responsibility for your own life.

Stop blaming the government, abortion, the gay community or Wall Street. Count your pennies, and find things you can buy for a penny. Count your talents and multiply them. And count your blessings and be thankful.

3. Be of good cheer.

Good cheer is not happiness, but rather, a road map to get to it. It is a decision to maintain peace and stillness in the midst of the storm. For I will tell you–the storms are not gone. There are more coming.

So we must heal, but also prepare.

G-Pop offers this definition for our strength:

Nothing happens until we show up; nothing is over until we give up.

 

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G-Poppers … April 29th, 2016

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G-Pop has a healthy and energetic disagreement with those who say they’re “sick and tired.”

Matter of fact, this phrase has become one of the favorite patters of the pundits.

“America is angry…”

Of course they’re angry. They live in a democracy where most of the time they won’t get their way. It’s the law of averages.

How often will your particular preference be in the majority? And if it isn’t, you are culturally and politically pushed to the side in favor of the plurality.

As I said, it’s called democracy–and democracy is like broccoli. No one particularly favors it, but everyone knows it’s good for them.

For example, if you want guns, be prepared to accept gays.

If you want to choose how you worship, make sure you understand that you must give every woman the right to choose what she does with her own body.

And if you love to celebrate the heritage of your genealogy, be fully aware there are those who are trying to come into our country who would also love to begin their own experience of generations.

If you are intent on pursuing your path and agenda exclusively, you will have to find a leader–a king, a queen, a shah, a dictator, an ayatollah–who agrees with your ideas, and place this person in power, being aware that eventually this absolute ruler will come along and take away something you really enjoy.

Otherwise, you should stay with a system called America, which is horribly flawed, but equally punishing to all of its citizens. And what is this punishment?

  • You’re not going to get what you want.
  • You will be part of an experiment of discovering the common good.

So for those who think America is angry, let me say: Get over it.

You are free.

But so is he.

And so is she.

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G-Poppers … November 6th, 2015

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G-Pop is somewhat concerned that his children are falling under the spell of the presumptive conclusion of, “Well, of course…”

Society is always in a hurry to come to the conclusion which seems to be most comfortable for the majority of those who have gathered to deliberate possibilities.

We love to take votes.

We love to find out what the plurality of the electorate feel, and then declare that notion to be holy by the sheer brute force of numbers.

For instance, at one time in our nation, we felt:

  • “Well, of course black people are not humans.”
  • “Well, of course man can’t fly.”
  • “Well, of course the Union can be split into two countries.”
  • “Well, of course homosexuals are mentally ill.”
  • “Well, of course we can spread democracy to the battling countries in the Middle East.”

All of these assertions had great popular appeal, and if you dared to stand against them, you were ridiculed, if not completely ostracized.

Matter of fact, G-Pop is very nervous when he hears people begin any speech with, “Well, of course…”

Three of these are particularly dubious and need another good inspection.

1. “Well, of course people should have freedom.”

Who says? Freedom is a fuel. It isn’t an engine. There has to be a good engine for the fuel of freedom to generate power.

A very wise man once said, “It is the truth that makes us free.”

So the fuel of freedom needs to stoke the engine of truth. Without truth, freedom becomes the abstract pursuit of those who avoid taking their proper place as human souls. And what is truth? Truth is always what includes the most people while giving respect to how the world works.

2. “Well, of course men and women are different.”

We’ve practically turned this concept into a religion. Half the comedians would lose their living wage if they didn’t pad their monologues with jokes about the gender wars.

But here’s the problem–men aren’t going away, nor are women. Men aren’t going to be dominant–likewise, neither are women.

The sexes have many similarities and a few differences–and the differences exist to teach us the responsibility of adjusting to one another. We are not going to be able to ignore the feelings of other people and come out righteous.

We have a responsibility to find common ground.

3. “Well, of course each one of us has a destiny.”

It’s part of the “snowflake theorem” which maintains that every snowflake is different. Likewise, every human being is carved with specific points of interest. But if a snowflake is different, by the time it gets to earth it gets the “drift,” loses its “flake” and becomes just snow.

We do not have a destiny.

We have free will.

We can use our free will to be obnoxious, waiting for the world to take care of us, or we can use those choices to step in and take care of our world.

These are the latest “Well, of courses…” that currently taunt us with false ideas. In a short time, they will be mocked as utter foolishness.

What will always remain, says G-Pop to his children, is the truth which teaches us the responsibility to use our free will wisely.

 

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