Category Archives: 1960s

"Big Brother" is Watching Everyone. What Happened to God?

IT MAKES SENSE TO ME

By Larry Peterson

Surveillance is a lovely word. Derived from the French word, surveill, it flows harmlessly off the tongue. But what it means when it lands is anything but lovely. It means  continuous observation of a place, person, group, or ongoing activity in order to gather information. And today, as we enter the highly upscale and sophisticated year of 2015, it is most likely that every single one of us has been somehow surveilled. This is, to me, scary, scary stuff. So I ask the question, why? Why in the name of all that is FREEDOM is it necessary for us all to be monitored, watched, photographed, videotaped, and even scanned?  I will tell you why and It Makes Sense To Me–just look at the empty churches.

Yeah, that’s right. It started when the sophisticates began their quest to eliminate God from our Judeo-Christian, uniquely American foundation. The chipping began long ago but over the past 50 years the jack-hammers and explosives have been busy busting up and blowing up the very fabric of our nation’s identity which had been woven together by God’s own thread.

Prior to 1960 we did not need so many rules, regulations and surveillance because the vast majority of people were –get ready, here it comes–were considered “God fearing, law abiding Americans”. The US Government has kept on expanding, like a huge hot air balloon with an unlimited capacity to embrace the “hot-air” that has created so much of our lost privacy and freedom.Today many Americans have morphed into more of a “Self-serving, I am entitled, I’m not bothering you American”. Whatever have we wrought? What we have wrought is Secularism.

I grew up in  New York City in the South Bronx during the 1950s and early 60s. We lived in an apartment that had four rooms, one of which was a small, eat in kitchen. There were seven of us, Mom, Dad and five kids. We were no different than any one else in the neighborhood. Some families had two kids, some had ten. No big deal. No one complained or considered that they were deprived or different or poor. During the heated summer months the humidity spent the sunlight hours steaming the bricks on the buildings so as to keep the nights hotter than the days, We kept our windows and front door wide open. There was a fire-escape outside the rear bedroom window and any one could have walked right in at any time of the night. Most everyone kept their apartment doors open to grab the breeze that might waft upward through the stairwells. It was a time when people enjoyed an inner peace.

Things began to change and before you knew it it was 1969 and front doors and windows were suddenly shut. Attendance at church became less and less. People, mostly younger folks, were demanding more “rights” inhibiting the rights of others in the process. The War in Vietnam was raging and more and more deadbolts were being installed. Vatican II changes were implemented and the Catholic Church experienced an upheaval by secularists who decided to interpret the changes to fit their personal beliefs. The 80s led to the 90s and more sophisticated, personal  alarm systems were developed for homes and cars. The computer age captured us all and by the 21st century we are all subjects to these incredible machines. They are the “ones” controlling and monitoring our personal lives, including our safety.

During October of 2014, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia gave a lecture entitled “Strangers in a Strange land”.  He pointed out that in 1950 Quebec, Canada had a 90% attendance by Catholics at Sunday Mass. In 2014 it as at 6%. There are young “Catholics” in Quebec who, if asked “What time is Mass?”, reply, “What is that?” In the United States attendance in 1960 on average was about 75%. Today it hovers at about 20% and half of those folks do not believe in the “Real Presence”,  a fundamental doctrine of the catholic faith. Almost 50%  of people who call them- selves Christian do not believe in the Resurrection of the body, another basic tenet of Christianity.

Fifty years ago most folks had a fundamental respect for each other. Since the age of secularism that seems to have waned severely. There is a sense of self-gratification that has grabbed hold of many. Women wanted equality with men. They now stand on subways and buses and do not have the door held open for them. Not all men are like that but it is not like it was.

As God was slowly diminished  “Big brother” slowly expanded his presence. Today he watches us like a “hawk” with cameras and recorders virtually everywhere imaginable. That is because we, the people, cannot be trusted. Drones for everyone will become the vogue especially private detectives, lawyers, and government agencies. Our back yards are no longer our private domain. Every aspect of out lives is now being scrutinized.  It seems we have traded God and His commandments for a Government that has power over your entire being. I liked it better when we kept the doors open.

“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people.
It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other”
—-John Adams; 2nd President of the United States

                                                                     

                                                                           Copyright2015 Larry Peterson                                                

"The Book is a Winner and has a Message for all Ages"

Review Redux:

5.0 out of 5 stars Top Ten of 2012
By 
This review is from: The Priest and the Peaches (Kindle Edition)

Is an amazing heart wrenching story about a family and their bond with each other, the unseen forces and the people in their lives. The family consists of a father and five children living together under one roof. They lost their mother to illness and their dad became lose in the world of alcohol and grief. He loves his family and does the best he can consider the circumstances.

When a tragedy hits the Peaches Family they have to fend for themselves and became a close knit family. More calamities occur and they are lost in a personal tumult storm and experience events that were detrimental yet they are courageous, miraculous and the trails transform them all. Their father was as I was seeing my own father when alive; a man who would give his own shirt off his back to help his neighbor and kept his deeds quiet. His mantra of L.Y.N. is such a powerful tonic of unconditional love and teaches others to share. The theme of paying forward had this reader reaching for the tissue box.

The hidden poetry of the story was so familiar to this reader’s life I felt as I was reliving some of my childhood experiences and was being pulled into a whirling pool of emotions, from love, anger, hatred and finally forgiveness. The writer has the gift of a master in explaining the secret of how pride, anger and hatred blocks the wondrous gifts that were meant to be cherish, and are lost in the rush of daily life of all business and some strangers and loved ones unleashing their selfish ego attitudes it is not to be spiteful but to hide behind the defenses so they do not have to unveil their broken hearts and shame secrets. I think this author is trying to tell the readers to keep their priorities in order and live life as it was meant to be and let the petty things go.

Everyone in this story is like a family member and it is easy to connect with each one. It was like my uncle and aunt was whispering to me and sharing wisdom with this reader. It is filled with knowledge, love, hope and faith and mysteries we all ponder about.

This author broke down all those barriers by writing a touching soul wrenching story about trials in life and shows with faith anything is possible. The twists and life rituals of this wonderful family and their personal journey through heart ache to victory is very inspiration and has this reader thinking about returning back to her former faith and strive harder to release the human qualities of pride and ego; to connect more with a higher force which may be the answer to live on this planet and we should live as in Let It Be as in the Beatles song.

This book is a winner and has a message for all ages. I was joyfully taken hostage by the story and sad to be release. This reader definitely looks forward to read more enlightening stories from this writer. This choice will probably stay as my number one choice for 2012.

"I Could Not Imagine Being 18 and—" see for yourself

  “I recommend this to my friends and anyone else that loves historical fiction”, Sandra Stiles

Review Redux:

5.0 out of 5 stars Priest and Peaches, from February 3, 2012
By 
Sandra K. Stiles (Sarasota, Florida) – See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Priest and the Peaches (Kindle Edition)

I could not imagine being an eighteen year old with my life ahead of me and suddenly my life is changed drastically. Teddy must find a way to take care of his siblings after their father dies. He does the best he can. The neighbor downstairs is causing problems for Teddy. He needs help so he turns to Father Tim Sullivan. Help comes in many forms including guidance in matters of everyday life. There are moral lessons to be learned seasoned with a touch of Christianity. There were pats where I just cracked up, like the boys jumping on the bed and pretending to be super-heroes. I think the reason I loved this so much was because I could relate to it so much. I remember jumping on our bed with the wire springs and having it collapse on us. I also remember my mom trudging up the steps to reprimand us. I remember tying scarves around my neck and pretending to be mighty mouse as I jumped off our back steps. When my mother was injured in a car accident and spent a month in the hospital in traction, my father put me in charge of my younger sisters aged 11 and 7. I was only 13 years old. I had to cook breakfast and get us ready for school, take care of my normal chores on our farm, help with homework, then fix dinner and take care of the dishes. It was tough. I could relate also because my experiences took place around the same time period.

I felt Teddy’s burdens as he tried to hold it all together. I felt his stress and heartache. This was one of those books that had you laughing one minute and then had your heart being squished. This is a young adult book, but I am telling you that adults will enjoy this book just as much. I definitely recommend it to my friends and anyone else that loves historical fiction.

Is it Chance or God's hand Working "Little" Miracles in Our Lives?

Review Redux:

5.0 out of 5 stars Growing Up Fast with a Serious Dose of Faith in this story, March 1, 2012
By 
This review is from: The Priest and the Peaches (Kindle Edition)

Growing up, I rarely saw a title that appealed to me and had any connection to my Catholic faith. This novel just might fill that type of void for any Catholics from middle school on up. The reader meets the Peach family, already suffering from the lost of their mother and grandmother. Now the children become orphans after their father’s unexpected death. This particular novel follows them through the first week or so after their father’s death. While there are plenty of ‘heavy’ topics broached (e.g. how to pay the bills), Mr. Peterson has thrown in a decent share of levity.

I have to say that this book was quite enjoyable on many levels. Seeing how God’s Hand was present throughout the trials experienced by the Peach family was fantastic. I believe we often miss those little miracles in our lives, possibly just writing them off to `chance.’ But, through the conversations and strings of consciousness for the characters, you can fully appreciate just how well God will take care of us so long as we are willing to accept it.

….Taken from my full review on Day by Day in Our World

Review Reprint; "I challenge you to read this book, Dare to look inside yourself—"

4.0 out of 5 stars Very Well Written, February 13, 2012
This review is from: The Priest and the Peaches (Kindle Edition)

This book is more than a story to be read… it holds lessons on life, love and happiness that we could all stand to revisit. What I found amazing as I read the story, only covers one week in the life of the Peach children. That one week, seven measly days, just so happened to be kicked off with the untimely death of a father they came to realize they barely knew.

I like to consider myself a good Christian, but books like The Priest and the Peaches that have significant religious themes often make me uncomfortable. To be honest, I briefly thought of declining the request for a review. While the religious aspects of the story did have me squirming in my seat and uncomfortable, I am very glad I read this book. I not only learned about the emotional roller coaster the Peach children road the seven days just after their father passed, I learned a lot about myself.

I learned I need to take a deep breath and try to not let my pride get in the way, I learned that everything and I mean everything happens for a reason. Don’t get me wrong, I sort of knew these things about myself already but something about the Peach children and the other characters that populate their world has moved me in such a way that I can’t exactly explain.

I challenge you to read this book, I challenge you to not learn that something that will at least have you thinking for a second longer in the future. I dare you to look inside yourself and really think about whether you might misjudge a character in your life like Peach children were misjudged (and the people the Peach children misjudged). I challenge you to do more than acknowledge your neighbor, I challenge you to L-Y-N. Want to know exactly what I am talking about? Read the book.