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Faith

Last night I spent some time over at alan.com.  Alan Colmes is a liberal commentator on Fox.  He has his own radio show that I enjoy and his blog and chat room are both exceptional.  In fact, it’s because of Alan that I started TarheelRed.  Anyway, so, I was chattin’ up the locals and, as you would expect, found myself in the minority on many topics.

We discussed taxes, education, labor, Presidential politics and even Iran.  The banter was back and forth, very quick and not unpleasant.  It’s hard and frustrating, to be sure, being the only Voice of Reason in a room full of Liberals, but hey, good times.

As I left I had two takeaways:

  1. Democrats and Republicans are very nearly the same.
  2. Very few people understand Liberty

I think that all people, from the Left and the Right, want good things to happen to people.  I think all people wanna help people when they need that help.  I think all people feel that everyone should contribute to society.  I think we’re all on agreement there.  And it goes even further.

Both Republicans and Democrats want to coerce man to cast aside their wicked ways.

The vehicle for the Republicans is Religion.  Via faith and God, the Right attempts to coerce people into doing good things.  The vehicle for the Democrats is the State.  Via laws and guns, the Left attempts to coerce people into doing good things.

We were discussing education.  I tried to make the case that given we ALL want a great educational system, up to and including college, we should work towards building a system that works.  I was immediately accused of wanting to privatize education.  When I admitted that would be preferable I also ceded the argument for the sake of discussion and said we could keep it public.  Even in a public setting, we have room for reform.  For example, disband the unions and allow administrations to hire and fire based on merit.  Provide bonuses and pay increases based on performance.

The response?

I hate teachers and don’t wanna educate the poor.  Why don’t I want the whole country to be educated?  It’s for my own good.  Even evil capitalists want and need educated children and adults.

The premise?

People, left to their own devices, will not find it within themselves to provide an educational experience that satisfies the needs of the society.  And so the Leftist enacts laws, the Conservative pulls on faith, all in an attempt to coerce people into doing what is deemed to be in their self interest.

The folks felt that even college education ought to be free.

I asked them if my neighbor to the west was unable to provide college tuition for his daughter, would I be within my rights to knock on the door of my neighbor to the east and demand money and time from him, by force of gun or sword, in order to provide tuition for my neighbor’s daughter.

They laughed and considered me extreme.

I then asked what real difference is there in THAT scenario and the one where a bunch of people vote to take my eastern neighbors money via the state.  I mentioned that they had a confused sense of Liberty.

Which brings me to point number 2 and perhaps the quote of the year:

Liberty Schmiberty

Sadly, I had to acknowledge that neither the Democrat nor the Republican are interested in Liberty.  Rather, only forcing their brand of charity through their approved vehicle of coercion.

Liberty Schmiberty indeed.

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I’m always looking for ways to get an edge in parenting.  I love little stories that I can use.  I enjoy toys that tell a story.  And I really Really look forward to sharing pivotal scenes from movies.

I can’t wait to start the tradition of watching “Miracle” this coming February 22nd.  I look forward to the day when I can watch “Old Yeller” with my son.

I’m watching “A League of Their Own” right now.  And this is one of those scenes:

The hard makes it great.

Damn.

We are mostly a peaceful society.  And in those cases where our nation does wage war, most of us have little danger of facing any chance at combat.  The age of the “warrior” is mostly over.

I have always thought that it’s in our DNA to wage that war, however.  I think that in our DNA is the warrior, the defender of our “tribe”.  It’s what explains the “atic” in “fan”.  It takes the mild and meek long haired dude in the office and turns him into the illogical screaming fool who lives and [mostly] dies with the Vikings and the Twins. It’s that thing within us that can only be explained by a long standing evolutionary thing.

And when humans reach into their inner nether regions to grasp and channel this “yawlp” it shouldn’t be a surprise when we find another, strangely similar concept:

God.

And so it is that I don’t understand the conflict:

Tim Tebow is an N.F.L. quarterback, and Tim Tebow is an outspoken Christian. And while quarterback controversies are almost as common as quarterbacks, who play perhaps the most scrutinized position in American sports, what has erupted around Tebow this season is altogether different.

At the intersection of faith and football, the fervor that surrounds both Tebow’s beliefs and his struggles in his second season for the Denver Broncos has escalated into a full-blown national debate over religion and its place in sports.

I guess I get the idea that the religious guys are the soft spoken gentle soul.  Characteristics not usually associated with the battle that is sports.  I remember when Gary Gaetti found God.  He was never the same player again.  So I get that aspect of it.

But I don’t understand the mockery of it all.  If a players obtains his inspiration from God, or from a desire to be the best or from wanting to bang Jessica Simpson, who cares?  In fact, the idea that warriors took to the field in defense of their god is a history as long as the history of war.

I don’t see religion and sports as contradictions.  I see them as complimentary forces.