Weekends are pretty hectic for me; so I do not get a chance to consume the news much. This weekend that was especially true–I was going pretty much non-stop from Thursday night until right now. Since lunchtime, I’ve had a chance to catch up on the news of the past week or so. I have opinions. These do not follow any particular order; and only reflect the news that piqued my interest.
- Whitney Houston’s death. So, so, so very sad. The 80’s diva could not survive success. Like so many celebrities before her, she let her addictions do her in. Her death is a tragedy, but so also is the countless numbers of other people who died this weekend because of a drug overdose or alcohol abuse. Her demise is a cautionary tale about wasted potential. She should still be belting out beautiful songs, but that is gone now.
- The Catholic Church Verses the Pill. So, I’m a Baptist, not a Roman Catholic, but I have to side with the bishops on this one. For the record, I am in favor of birth control and think the Catholics are wrong on their doctrine. However, freedom of religion is a very big deal to me. Religious institutions should not be forced to subsidize, in any way, things which go against their teaching. I find the heavy handed way in which the politicians involved dealt with the issue to very troubling. There has got to be a better way. I saw some talking head cite statistics about the number of people who who favor making the church pay for this–but that is not the point. Freedom is never open for polls. The United States Constitution is all about protecting the freedom of the minority; and this is especially true of freedom of religious expression and practice. This is probably just a political blunder, but we’ll see.
- The Powell Children. This is far sadder than Whitney Houston. This local news story is so horrific that I can’t even bring myself to summarize it. What has intrigued me is that some have second guessed the government social worker who dropped off the boys, the judge who oversaw the case, the legal apparatus, the neighborhood and so many others who “should have done better.” At some point we’ve got to admit as a society that when bad things happen, it is not always someone’s fault. This man, Josh Powell, is just evil. Evil people do evil things. Good people try and stop them, but sometimes it just is too late.
- Under the Radar. One more news story I’ve noticed that hasn’t gotten much attention, but it disturbs me. Apparently the Department of Homeland Security (I hate that name—Homeland Security) is asking the FAA to unleash a fleet of 30,000 drones in the United States for surveillance purposes by the year 2020. That is 8 years from now. What? Why? Soon, there will be no place anyone can go and nothing he or she can do that will not be under the watchful eye in the sky. Very frightening. Very frightening. I’m trying not to be paranoid here or sound too conspiracy theorists, but this frightens me. This should get more press than Whitney Houston.