The Threats!

The verbal rhetoric of two bullies is endangering the tender peace of our world.

The powerful words of President Trump to match the threats of North Korea’s sociopathic leader positions America into an untenable path of fire and fury rather than the options of difficult talk.

Yes, talk! Each side has postured itself into a belligerent position. This is not just between two egotistical leaders; it is now between the new way of global cooperation and equality and the old way of war.

It must not happen. The world needs to be done with devastation.  The consequence will be near annihilation for millions and millions of innocent people.

A news report today said that North Korea has a weapon similar in destructive power as the one dropped on Hiroshima.

To make the bomb that hit Hiroshima, according to author Eric Schlosser, the US used 141 pounds of Uranium, basically all of the processed Uranium that was then in existence.

In his book Command and Control, when the bomb exploded most of the enriched uranium was blown apart before the bomb reached the “supercritical” phase. He says, in the end, the huge explosion was caused by just 0.7g of Uranium. As Schlosser notes, that material weighed less than a dollar bill, and it killed 80,000 people.

Can you imagine if all 141 pound of Uranium had reached the critical stage?  Don’t imagine, expect the modern day equivalent, even from North Korea, to be far more refined and sophisticated.

We don’t need posturing bullies in the world today; we need statesmen and stateswomen, diplomats, and diplomacy to defuse this worsening confrontation.  This situation is global, not just America and North Korea. Pray, my friends that the little minds of humankind can morph into a cosmic understanding that we are all ONE.

Oneida, New York

It isn’t often we get a chance in our later years to go back to a place and people of our youth. I had that experience over the past weekend.

I grew up in a post-war time and in a bucolic place. It was a small city in central New York. At that time, it had industry to employ its citizens. It had a railroad that ran through it that separated the north and south side of the city. Trains stopped daily. It had, like most eastern cities, its wealthy, its middle class and its poor.

It had a small movie theatre where I changed the marque twice a week, and I was paid five-dollars and free movies. Not bad for a teenager in the 1950’s.

I went back to visit at the invitation of an old friend. The friend was wonderfully the same but educated with the maturity of time and the wisdom of age. My town, however, was no more. The industry was gone. The railroad was gone and the downtown buildings I once thought of as elegant were in the troughs of deterioration; even two of my school buildings were gone.

Architecture and elegance of place are a lot like our bodies. Time takes its toll on all things, flesh and façades are not impervious to the ravages of time.

What I did notice was that the city had moved outward. The elegant homes were now where farms used to be, and my small city was being dissolved and absorbed by  bigger cities nearby.

Maybe someday gentrification will change my Oneida. If not,  my memory will hold until I pass.

Uncle Sam’s letter to Emma Lazarus

The Office of Uncle Sam

Symbol of the United States of America

August 2, 2017

My Dear Ms. Lazarus,

I trust this letter will reach you on the other side of being.

I regret to inform you of a recent proposal by the current administration of United States of America.

It has to do with your area of expertise – immigration. I won’t get into the details of the plan right now, but suffice it to say that no longer will the Mother of Exiles welcome the tired, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free. Our long-standing national policy may change if the proposal becomes the law of the land.

We have a new colossus in the White House. There are many who think he can and will change the status quo because of his uncanny approach to what was organized and established government. Some of his hopes and wishes have merit, but the suggested implementation of many proposals is suspect under the rule of law and the historic tradition of this land we call America.

If you have the time would you please inform Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Adams, Mr. Madison, and Mr. Franklin,  The other framers of our sacred constitution have been told by other contacts in this office. Also please copy Mr. Lincoln and Mr. King for there are other implications that they should know about.

Until this issue is adjudicated, would you please extinguish the lamp you lit beside the golden door.

Sincerely yours,

Uncle Sam

A memory of a long ago hike.

It was a hike a few years ago, but now it seems like a lot longer.  It wasn’t just hard walking, it was climbing and clinging and grabbing as I ascended a steep nearly verticle path.

It was an intermittent misty and rainy day with a cool ambiance that more refreshed than chilled. Fog drifted up the climbing ledges in gossamer wafts of white and gray as the rain coated and washed the ascending trail into a slippery challenge. Granite boulders, some the size of houses, festooned the path as I crawled, slid and climbed through rocky cuts, tiny cave like openings and up and down in rough rocky cuts and chimney climbs.

I loved the purity of the climb. The rain kept all other hikers, but one, from the slippery rocks and pine needle puddles and so it was just nature and me. Pristine and primal with occasional surprising vistas of the cliffs and lake below bursting through framed granite and conifer sculptures.

It was renewing and inspiring, and an experience filled with a fragrant ceremony for the eastern mountain laurel was in full bloom. Each pink and white blossom celebrated, not only with the mist of the day but with seeming appreciation of just being the beauty it was.

I met a weasel who acknowledged my encroachment upon his home and path and a tiny wild Finch who stayed much longer than expected singing on a branch not more than two feet away from my still and silent watch.

It was a glorious day.

When I got home and read the newspaper headlines I wondered, what are we doing to ourselves?