Category Archives: children

And What About the Children?

IT MAKES SENSE TO ME

By Larry Peterson

The headline of the Tampa Tribune this morning (Saturday, June 27) was emblazoned with huge, bold letters that read,  “Pride & Joy”.  The Tampa Bay Times shouted, “A Right For All”.   The Supremes have spoken and their decision is in the books. According to the headlines, the world is rejoicing. I just wish someone could tell me about the children. What about the children?

We all have an inherent need to know our background and where we came from. How often do we hear and/or participate in conversations about our grandparents and great-great grandparents and so forth. We will delight in talking about accomplishments of our dads and our moms. We revel in tales  about uncles and aunts and grandparents and their grandparents and where they came from and their achievements.

War heroes, professional baseball players, movie actors, surgeons, jet fighter pilots, musicians, and a myriad list of very different people proudly (and sometimes not) fill the family lore of millions of families. Even adopted children have a need to know their roots. As they get older this need blossoms and they invariably begin a quest to find their birth-parents. It is all about “WHO I AM”. And–they have an absolute right to know. They need to be “complete”. Knowing their own family blood-line can fulfill that completion. That is just the way it is. It is an instinct, it is natural, it is GOOD. None of us came from a “cabbage-patch”.

So, I ask again, what about the children? Yes, now that The SCOTUS has legalized the three parent family in the United States of America, what about the children that will be brought into families with same-sex parents? No matter what rule five empowered lawyers pass they cannot ever change the fact that a child must be the result of the procreation of a man and a woman. An infant may be brought home to two “married men” or two “married women” as their own child but is it really?   There is a third parent out there somewhere.

Heterosexual couples who adopt become a mom and a dad.  How does it work in a same-sex environment? Is the man who provides the sperm considered the father? Does the woman who provides the uterus for the sperm become the mother? When the child arrives at an age where they ask, “what can you tell me about my birth-mom or birth-dad”, how is that handled? Will the sperm donor from 20 years ago be willing to  come forward? What happens when two married women break up? Who gets custody? Do they keep accurate records of all donors?

Will a new “cottage industry” pop up for supplying sperm and eggs to people who might have a disease and cannot get approval to acquire sperm? What if one of the “marrieds” decides that maybe they are not homosexual and want to take up with the opposite sex? And let us not forget genetic predisposition. Will the children of these “marriages” have their actual blood line available so they might be able to use genetic markers to see if they are predisposed to diabetes, breast cancer, heart disease, and even autism or mental illness? It reverts back to the question; what about the children? What does this do to the children?

There is an  irrefutable fact of life and this is it. From the beginning of time, man and woman knew that marriage was peculiar to male and female. It is as natural as the rising and setting of the sun. We, as a species, have a need to survive. Continuing the human race is part of that survival instinct. Individual men and women are naturally attracted to each other and when they are they join together to form a family that reproduces and continues the species. It is the way of things and has been so for millennia. A ruling by five people cannot ever change natural law.

Children have “rights” too. And it seems to me that one of these basic rights is to be raised by a female mom and a male dad who have willingly joined together and started a family. Only as  unique human beings of the opposite sex can this be done. I wish no malice to gay people. I do not hate gay people. I wish them all the best. If they choose to have a life together, so be it. But, in my opinion, this gay marriage revolution has forgotten about the children. They are an after-thought. Gay marriage is all about secularism’s  mantra of self-gratification. But what about the children?

                                 ©Larry Peterson 2015  All Rights Reserved

I Love Christmas and I Will be Praying for all the "Grinches" trying to Ruin It

IT MAKES SENSE TO ME

by Larry Peterson

I love Christmas and the entire season that surrounds it. Christmas is about faith and love and goodness and sharing and giving and all of those things that fill the hearts of the vast majority of people around the world with a renewed spirit that can shine through even the darkest moments we may have experienced during the preceding year. Yes, I love Christmas.

Christmas is so much more than a ‘certain day’ each year. It is an actual state of mind. It becomes part of whom many of us still are….Children at heart. And we become children again through our own children and even our grandchildren. We can love the anxiety and pressure and the cookies and candy and putting up the tree and neighborhood decorations the same as the little ones.  I  anxiously looked forward to Santa’s arrival when I was a child and still looked forward to his arrival as the one who dressed up in a Santa suit and crept into my own house at midnight. Now my sons do that and I can hear about his arrival the next morning from the wide eyed grandkids who actually witnessed Santa disappear from their house after leaving presents under the tree. Yes, I love Christmas.

Most importantly, Christmas is about Salvation. The story is so beautiful and profound. A simple carpenter, obeying the law, must take his full-term, pregnant teenage wife, on an 80-mile journey to the town of his ancestry for the census. Riding on the back of a mule she somehow manages to make the trip and God only knows (and HE does) how this could be possible. Not knowing anyone, they cannot find a place to stay and the baby is about to be born. Effectively homeless and in a strange town they wind up in a stable and mom gives birth to her child surrounded by smelly animals and old straw. Can you imagine?

This helpless infant is the Son of God, sent by His Father, and His birth among the lowest of the low shows us all the greatest act of humility ever enacted by anyone, before, then, or ever after. This baby will grow up and they will torture and kill Him when He is 33 years old. Why? Because He preaches forgiveness and kindness and that we should “love our neighbor” and “turn the other cheek”. This made Him a threat to those in power. They just had to get rid of Him. Today, 2000 years later, over 2.6 billion people are following  Him. I guess killing Jesus did not bring the desired results. Yes, I love Christmas.

Today we still have those who want desperately to kill Jesus. From the maniacal Islamists around the world who are doing their best to physically murder Christians wherever they can find them to  the atheists, agnostics, pagans, heathens, satanists and their ilk who HATE everything about Christianity and Christmas. (Okay, okay, maybe not ALL of them hate Christmas but we never hear from them.)

To all of you who want to ruin this day, I ask, “Why?” You are also removing the love and goodness that is associated with it. So, shame on you. You know what, you are all just “plain old mean”. You are the true “grinches” in the world. You are an embarrassment to all the tender hearts filled with kindness and generosity during this time of the year.

I wish to say to all you “grinches” that I will say a prayer for all of you this Christmas. I will pray that you might catch a glimpse of that star that shines so bright. Maybe a droplet of its light will find a way into into your heart. If you happen to catch a glimpse of this light please, do not turn away. You will have chosen to ignore a beautiful Christmas moment. This moment could be the greatest gift you ever receive. What do you have to lose? So keep your eyes and hearts open and MERRY CHRISTMAS to all and may God bless us, ALL of us. And yes, I do love Christmas.

Pope Francis: "…Marriage is about a Man and a Woman Walking Together…"

IT MAKES SENSE TO ME

by Larry Peterson

Way way back in ancient times, like around 1950, about 22% of American adults were single.  Since the population ‘way back then’ was about 152.3 million that would mean that about 33.5 million Americans were unattached.  In 2013 the population was almost double, coming in at about 316 million people.  Single adults tipped the scales at 50.2%.  That translates into the fact that more than HALF the population of the United States is now single.  The actual number of the percentage of 50.2% would be 158,632,000.  That is actually more than the entire United States population of 1950.  SINGLES have taken over.  Whatever have we wrought?

What we have wrought, or rather allowed, is a secular induced ambivalence about marriage.  It seems  that since marriage translates to “responsibility” and many of the young people of today have been induced into a state of “Meism”, the old cliche, “looking out for Number One” is the dominant standard.  In addition, it seems that our society has encouraged an extended period of adolescence where young adults often stay with mommy and daddy even as they begin to journey into middle age.
 Heck,  even the government  calls people up to 26 years old, “children”.  This way they justify their being carried on their parents’ health insurance plan.  What’s a young person supposed to think.

Of course we also live in a world of “practicalism”.  People are more practical today than back in my day. In the “old days” most folks were “impractical”.  They dated first, then got engaged, and then, about a year later, got married and a  new family was born.  Then they moved into the apartment they had rented and it WAS their first home.  Then along came little “Jack” or “Jill”.  I confess, having been married in 1967,  I was among the vast majority of impractical young people.

Things have changed a bit since the early to mid seventies. In the world of “practicalism” marriage is often looked at the same way one might look at  a new Toyota or a Ford.  The couple want to “test drive” it first.  Meists see many positives to this type of non-commitment:  a) you can have separate bank accounts;  b) you can have your own health insurance and not have to pay for anyone else’s;  c) if you do not like sleeping together you can go sleep somewhere else with NO strings attached; and finally, d) if you do not like the “model” you are trying you can simply walk away and look for another model.  There might be some yelling and screaming but, hey, such a DEAL!

Fear not, the Meistic and Practical world of secularism has some detractors.  Listen to Pope Francis in his homily given right before he presided over the marriages of 20 couples in Rome.   The Pope said, “The love of Christ, which has blessed and sanctified the union of husband and wife, is able to sustain their love and to renew it when, humanly speaking, it becomes lost, wounded or worn out.  The love of Christ can restore to spouses the joy of journeying together.”

The Holy Father continued , “Marriage is about a man and a woman walking together, wherein the husband helps his wife to become even more a woman, and wherein the woman  has the task of helping her husband to become ever more of a man. Here we see the reciprocity of differences.”

I love how the Pope used the phrase, “reciprocity of differences”.  This simply points out that men and women do compliment each other.  I would venture that up until the late 1960s, marriage was the state of life that most human beings chose to enter.  Marriage is actually instinctive.  It has always (for the most part) been under the umbrella of  marriage that the human race was preserved. The husband and wife formed the family nucleus and they brought forth children and raised them and nurtured them and educated them.  Most of these children  followed their parents and did the same.

The Holy Father said (in the same homily when talking about the family), “It is impossible to quantify  the strength and depth of humanity contained in the family as demonstrated through the mutual help, educational support, relationships developing as family members mature, and the sharing of joys and difficulties.”

“Families are the FIRST place in which we are formed as persons and, at the same time, the “bricks” for the building up of society.”

The central theme of the Holy Father’s homily, was “Marriage is a symbol of life…the Sacrament of love of Christ and the Church, a love which finds its proof and guarantee in the Cross.”

Pope Francis is quite wise.  He also said, “There is a cure which God offers to spouses who “have become impatient on the way, and who succumb to the dangerous temptations of discouragement, infidelity, weakness, and abandonment. To them God the Father gives His Son Jesus, not to condemn them, but to save them.  If they entrust themselves to Him, He will bring them healing by the merciful love that pours from the Cross, with the strength of His grace that renews and sets married couples and families once again on the right path.”

He said to the couples and these are words all married couples should embrace, “This is the task you share. ‘I love you, and for this love I help you to become ever more a woman.’; ‘I love you, and for this love I help you to become ever more a man.”

Pope Francis has given all people (not just Catholics) a profound and poignant message about the call to the married state.  He recognizes that it is a hard road because two individuals, a man and a woman, are joining together as one. There are differences between them.  But marriage is the ultimate commitment to giving of oneself to another.  A marriage united in the sacramental life of the church has been built on a foundation of solid bedrock.  Its chance to withstand the decades long onslaught from the world around it has been fortified and shielded in the best way possible.  It has embraced the Cross.  Somehow, someway the Church must bring folks back to that reality.  Pope Francis has set the table for this to begin.  He has done the responsible thing.

Being Anti-Christmas Equals Permanent Denial

 by 

I admit it. I get pretty ticked off at some of the anti-Christmas stuff that is dumped on us Christmas lovers this time of the year.  If you do not like Christmas, if you do not believe in Christmas, if you are anti-Christian, an atheist, agnostic, or even a Vulcan,  why do you give a ‘flying reindeer’  what we Christmas lovers love?  Why can’t you let us enjoy our creches with the innocent baby and Christmas trees and  wide-eyed children filled with the awe of an impending  visit by Santa on Christmas Eve? How in the name of candy canes and snowflakes can these things bother you? Hey man, I don’t care if you don’t roast chestnuts on an open fire or do not drink eggnog. Why do you care if I and the millions like me, do?  But a heavy weight has finally been lifted from my shoulders. I have finally  accepted the fact that you anti-Christmas people have been around for centuries (ever hear of King Herod) and are never going to stop your ranting and raving. Yes, this Christmas I am at peace with you.
Christmas is so much more than a ‘certain day’ each year. It is about faith and love and goodness and giving and sharing and the twinkle in the eyes of children and songs about  peace and joy and angels and poor people (shepherds) and rich people (the wise men) and the star, the brightest and  most wonderful star ever seen.  For over two thousand years this  star has lit the way for all  blood-lines as they traveled across the centuries. It is about  Salvation–the Salvation available to each and every one of us who has ever lived. So, whatever  is the problem with all of you  anti-Christmas, anti-God, anti-Jesus people who are somehow “offended” by KINDNESS and GOODNESS and LOVE? Why do you want to ruin it for the vast majority of people who LOVE Christmas and all it stands for? How can you be so  self-centered and self-absorbed that you are willing to snatch  joy and happiness right from the hearts of millions of children? What is wrong with you supposedly tolerant, caring, people?  I don’t get it. How can you hate Christmas?  Well, I have decided that you cannot hate Christmas. If you say that you do–you are living in a state of permanent denial.
So, for this Catholic man who believes that the reason for Christmas is the Virgin birth of Christ the Savior  this  is the Christmas that I have come to peace with  you  anti-Christmas folks, all of you. Filled with the “Bah-Humbug” spirit you have tried to bludgeon all of us  Christmas lovers  into submission. And you and your kind have been doing it for centuries, even before Dickens had Scrooge mouth “bah-humbug” back in 1843. It is old news folks, very old news.
Please know that this Christmas this believer will  say a prayer for all of you who do not believe. I will pray that  you catch a glimpse of that star that shines so bright.  Maybe a droplet of its light will find its way into  your heart.  If you do happen to catch a glimpse of it don’t turn away. You will have ignored a beautiful Christmas moment. You will have chosen the proverbial “hunk of coal” over a “sweet candy cane”. I swear, it is true. So keep your eyes and hearts open and Merry Christmas to EVERYONE.  For me, this Christmas is truly Peace on Earth no matter what anyone says or does.

"Is There A Santa Claus? You Better Believe it"

by Larry Peterson


I just though that I would make a suggestion to those highly sophisticated,  elitist, and pontificating editorialists and pundits (both print & broadcast) around the country who have been apparently blessed with much more insight and wisdom than a shmoe like me will ever have. If some seven or eight year old kid writes you a letter asking about whether or not Santa Claus is TRUE please take a moment before answering to review the answer one of your colleagues, Francis Pharcellus Church penned to eight year old, Virginia O’Hanlon, 116 years ago. It answers this very question. This editorial has become a timeless classic and is the most reprinted editorial in newspaper history. I love it and believe it. (That’s right, I BELIEVE IT, so what.  Hey, what did you expect. I did not go to Harvard.)
So, without further adieu:

Is There A Santa Claus?
From the editorial page of The New York Sun
September 21, 1897
_______________________________________________
Dear Editor—I am eight years old. Some of my friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, “If you see it in THE SUN, it’s so. Please tell me the truth. Is there a Santa Claus?
Virginia O’Hanlon
115 W. 95th St.
_______________________________________________
Dear Virginia, your friends are wrong. They have been affected by the scepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except what they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.
Yes Virginia, there isa Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginia. There would be no child-like faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence.We should have no enjoyment except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.
Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your Papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.
You tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and  picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah Virginia, in all this world, there is nothing else real and abiding.
No Santa Claus! Thank God he lives! And he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten time ten thousand years from now , he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

The Hijacking of Childhood Innocence

I have always believed that one of the most beautiful things we have in our lives is that magnificent intangible we call “childhood innocence”. I even have a picture of a brother and sister, holding hands and walking to kindergarten together. It is on my masthead. The caption reads, “INNOCENCE”. And God knows, inside these little people beats the purest hearts of all. The Catholic Church even teaches that a child does not even attain the age of reason until the age of seven. It is a beautiful thing.

The other day two seven year old classmates pointed pencils at each other at the Driver Elementary School in Virginia. They made funky little shooting sounds with their mouths as boys will do when they use their developing imaginations. Horror of Horrors–they were immediately suspended for two days for violating the Suffolk Public School’s weapons policy. They were lucky–it could have been ten days. Bethane Bradshaw, a school division spokeswoman, said, “We consider it intimidating and threatening. It does not have a place in the classroom.”

I do not get it. How did it ever come about where so many school administrators and teachers have taken it upon themselves to “know what is best” for our kids. When did they start telling us what to feed our kids, how much they should weigh and what they should THINK. Who the hell do they think they are? And what is it that they all gleefully hide behind that gives them validation for their actions—ZERO TOLERANCE. Yesiree, good old ZERO TOLERANCE, the greatest oxymoron ever created.

Amazingly, it is embraced by those wanting to promote their own agenda and it follows that many of them have gone into the field of education. Why? Because that field is the most fertile ground to plant their little packets of “agenda seeds”. God help us. We are allowing them to use our children as the fertilizer. The thing of it is, whatever sprouts from those seeds will not be the beautiful flower they had imagined. It will probably be a neurotic adult who has blossomed from a frightened, insecure child and who is afraid of making any common sense decisions.

It seems to me that Spokesperson Bradshaw and other puffed up elitists like her are popping up all over the American educational system. These are the ones that need to be suspended indefinitely, not innocent seven-year olds. They have no right to be allowed to traumatize little children by telling them that they are being “bad” because they are innocently using their imaginations. The main weapon they are using to frighten our young is POWER. They will say that they are simply following guidelines that are in the student handbook or it is school-board policy or it is the principal’s decision. They will say it is their job. What they will not do is take responsibility or stand up for the little victims being attacked. They are also gutless. In the hands of people like Ms. Bradshaw that weapon of power is far more damaging than  pencils being pointed at each other by two second graders.

"Truly An Amazing Story" I cried & laughed

Review Redux:

5.0 out of 5 stars The Priest and the Peaches, April 2, 2012
By 
Arlena (Broken Arrow, OK, United States) – See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Priest and the Peaches (Kindle Edition)

Author: Larry Peterson
Published By: Tribute Books
Age Recommend: 14+
Reviewed By: Arlena Dean
Raven Rating: 5
Blog Reviewed For: Great Minds Think Aloud
Review:

This was truly an amazing story of The Yimey Peach Family from the Bronx, New York. “The Priest and the Peaches” story started with five children being newly orphaned and their struggle to survive together as a family. With the help of the Father Tim Sullivan steering them to make good and wise decisions the children were able to overcome many obstacles that were presented to them. And in the end this Peach Family got a surprise from a person who had once been their enemy, was now there for them showing much love.

I really did enjoy reading this novel. It did cause me to cry a little but I also laughed at so much of it too. The story really makes one think of just what really could happen when you are an orphan. The book is really a page turner. I believe Mr. Larry Peterson did a excellent job with the telling of this story “The Priest and the Peaches” and I definitely would recommend this novel to all. The Priest and the Peaches” was a excellent read!