N.W.BOYER…Christian Author

FREEDOM

DIVERSITY and AMERICA

We are at a critical time in our country. This is a pure understatement! Nevertheless, most of the Americans that I know believe that we are ALL extremely blessed to be citizens of this country. Ask any person who has lived under tyranny or in a communist state, how many rights and privileges they could call their own.

We are a DIVERSE people. Some of our ancestors came here because they wanted to come. They left everything to be part of a free country… a part of the “New World.”

Other of our American citizen’s ancestors were brought here in chains. This was tragic and it has been a long struggle for them over generations. Our Native Americans also suffered great loss. The generations of today have much to be grateful for as they pursue an even better life. The greatest country…with the greatest privileges must be protected, not destroyed.

We are a FAMILY of Americans and we never should forget this. Just like in many families, there will be those who disappoint us with their lack of caring, rebellion, selfish actions toward the family. Our American children are going to emulate what they learn from us…of all races and all creeds…hopefully for the better… unless they choose otherwise.

Here in America, there are more rights for all Americans than anywhere around the world. Why do we see the eagerness to cross our borders? Because we stand for LIBERTY and opportunity given here for a better life is the answer. It is for all of us to build on these rights and NEVER allow them to slip away.

Yes, we are as diverse as our country itself is diverse. As we spread from sea to sea, the beauty and bounty of this land must not be underappreciated by any of us.

Charlie Daniels shows it best in his video. “My Beautiful America.” May he rest in peace…as he passed away on July 7, 2020.

GOD BLESS AMERICA and heal her wounds.

Turn on your sound:


TOUGH WORDS

A close friend of mine sent me the writing below and ask that I pass it on. Just before we celebrate the 4th of July, our great Independence Day, I am happy to do so. They are definitely “tough words.”

As we look back at what it cost to free ourselves, as a nation, from England, in order to gain independence….our American flag stands for all the freedoms we enjoy and all that it has cost since then. This includes the freedom of speech…for those who speak out for or against a certain action.

The following are not my words, but I believe they speak the feelings of many Americans who love their sports and the players, but not some of their actions or attitudes. You be the judge.

“TO THE NFL (NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE) and ITS PLAYERS:

If I have brain cancer, I don’t ask my dentist what I should do. If my car has a problem, I don’t seek help from a plumber! Why do you think the public cares what a football player thinks about politics? If we want to know about football, then depending on the information we seek, we might consult with you, but even a quarterback doesn’t seek advice on playing his position from a defensive tackle!

You seem to have this over inflated view of yourselves, thinking because you enjoy working on such a large scale stage, that somehow your opinion about everything matters. The NFL realizes the importance of its “image” so it has rules that specify the clothes and insignia you can wear, the language you use, and your “antics” after a touchdown or other “great” play. But somehow you and your employer don’t seem to care that you disgrace the entire nation and its 320 million people in the eyes of the world by publicly disrespecting this country, its flag, and its anthem! The taxpaying citizens of this country subsidize your plush work environments, yet you choose to use those venues to openly offend those very citizens.

Do you even understand what the flag of this country means to so many of its citizens before you choose to “take a knee” in protest of this “country” during our national anthem?

You may think because you are paid so much that your job is tough, but you are clueless when it comes to tough.  Let me show you those whose job is really tough.

You are spoiled babies who stand around and have staff squirt GatorAid in your mouths, sit in front of misting cooling fans when it’s warm, and sit on heated benches when it’s cold. That’s not “tough” that’s pampered.

You think that you deserve to be paid excessively high salaries, because you play a “dangerous” game where you can incur career ending injuries. Let me show you career ending injuries!

You think you that you deserve immediate medical attention and the best medical facilities and doctors when injured. Let me show you what it’s like for those who really need and deserve medical attention.

You think you have the right to disrespect the flag of the United States, the one our veterans fought for, risked limbs and mental stability to defend, in many cases died for. Let me show you what our flag means to them, their families, and their friends.

You believe you are our heroes, when in reality you are nothing but overpaid entertainers, who exist solely for our enjoyment! Well, your current antics are neither entertaining nor enjoyable, but rather a disgrace to this country, its citizens, all our veterans and their families, and the sacrifices they have made to ensure this country remains free. You choose to openly disgrace this country in the eyes of the rest of the world, yet with all your money, still choose to live here rather than in any other country. People with even the slightest amount of “Class” will stand and respect our flag. Where does that put you? You want to see heroes… here are this countries heroes!

You can protest policies, the current government, or anything else you choose, that is your right. But when you “protest” our flag and anthem, you are insulting the nation we all live in and love, and all those who have served, been injured, or died to keep it free. There is nothing you can do or say that can make your actions anything more than the arrogance of classless people, who care about themselves more than our country or the freedoms for which our veterans and their families have sacrificed so much, to ensure you have the “right” to speak freely. Our country is far from perfect, but if you can point to any other country where your freedom and opportunities are better than they are here, then you just might want to go there and show respect for their flag!”

VIDEO “GOD BLESS AMERICA” Turn up sound


LIFE IS FRAGILE

My Mother made a beautiful stitched picture that hangs on my wall. Every time I look at it, I think of her fingers carefully pulling the needle and thread. The message was important to her and it should be for all of us today.

 

stictching by Alta

History also is most important to us because it teaches us so much.  We can look at what has happened in the past and in some ways project the future…unless we refuse to learn. Most present-day issues are sensitive and hard to discuss, but we must think about these things.

What kind of “fragile” times are we going through and what has history taught our last generations?

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Let’s take a hard look at now and then.

  • Everyone has become fearful of the possibility of becoming sick or dying from our recent virus.
  • Governments have taken control world-wide more than we can remember in our modern history.
  • Life and travel has completely changed.
  • Tragedies have led people to respond with demonstrations as they let their concerns be known. This is the democratic way, according to our Constitution, and should be respected.

    Protests 2020 3

    A mostly peaceful demonstration in the U.S.

  • More tragedies have occurred for business owners, of every race and creed, whose livelihood has been ruined by the breaking and looting, which should have never been connected with those wanting peaceful demonstrations. Some organizations have as their goal to bring down democracy and pit our citizens against one another.

    protest looting broken windows 2020

    Small business store fronts smashed and looted.

(Let’s look at those in other parts of the world who are fighting to keep their democratic way of life.)

  • People in Hong Kong are facing further governmental crack-downs from mainland China as Beijing proposes new legislation. ( “China stunned Hong Kong when it announced it would impose a national security law on the city. Many worry this could spell the end of Hong Kong’s unique freedoms…”whole story on BBC News

Hong Kong

After 156 years of British rule, Hong Kong exists as a Special Administrative Region controlled by The People’s Republic of China with its own limited autonomy as defined by the principle of “one country, two systems.” (Wikipedia)

 

Why even mention the present day problems?  It is because these are only a few of the world’s problems that makes “Life Fragile” for all of us, in this country and around the world today.

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What can we, the present generations, learn from history?

  • The slave owners and slave ship captains were the ones responsible for the sins of the past…not people living today. By making slavery the sin of those living today only makes our society more fragile. Unfortunately, history cannot be relived, as much as we would like to correct the wrongs of the past.  Looking at and condemning the actions of the past by individuals or governments is one thing…to place it on the shoulders of those not responsible is another.

We talk of the need for “being together and unified” and  for everyone to work together to rid all injustices in society.  Yes, the present and future are our responsibilities. To rectify present problems is an honorable goal that most would want to see accomplished, but talk is cheap if we continue to blame those who are not responsible for past injustices.

Slave ships

Slave ship

Mass blame only leads to disruption and a society sickness within groups of people, leadership, the media, and our communities in general.

( Let’s think also about German history.)

  • The Nazi regime blamed an entire group of people. They were the builders of the death camps, designed to eliminate the Jews from their culture.  I had the honor of taking young Americans to Auschwitz to remember this tragic time during World War II.  It is an experience one never forgets. Even the Jews, themselves, could not believe that their businesses were being destroyed and that they would be rounded up to die, simply because they were a particular group of people.  Society has a way, through the evils of leadership, to turn against one another.  Interestingly enough, Hitler continued to use the expertise of his Jewish doctors and dentist.  How could he not have known the value of the individual?  Mass hysteria became the weapon of choice, as well as propaganda through the German media, leaflets, and posters against people as a whole.

 

Nazi death camp

Nazi death camp2

Jewish women in a Nazi death camp

The German youth today, or their parents, are not responsible.  We will make life more fragile if we try to pin on innocent people what tragedies were espoused when they were either tiny children or not even born.

  • Past generations of Native Americans had the horror of walking to their death on the Trail of Tears, which is a despicable part of our own history of governmental policies. The white, mostly of European descent, who rode their wagons through the tribal territory to settle the West were often murdered and scalped.  No living Native American had anything to do with this tragedy. 

     

  • We must not forget the hundreds of Japanese Americans, who were placed by our government leaders during World War II in the U.S.Internment Camps because of being Japanese.  The generations today of U.S. Government officials had no part in this. 

    Japanese internment

    American interment camp for Japanese in WWII

  • Because some policemen have acted in evil ways against defenseless people, ALL men and women wearing the badge can not be blamed or demonized for the acts of others… for many have dedicated their lives to helping safe-guard our communities.  Without them, those who mean harm will be let loose on those who will see a greater need to protect themselves. In this case, those wishing for more gun control may find their proposals will fall on deaf ears.

     

Are we getting the picture?

Blaming ALL people for the actions of some only leads  to an extremely fragile society. It leads to the persecution of the innocent and instability of our nation and the world today. 

Our last question:  Can destroying the representations of history remove it from memory?

the destruction of statue of Buddah in Afghanistan

180-foot-high Buddha statue in Bamian, central Afghanistan on Dec. 18, 1997, left, and after its destruction on March 26, 2001. (Muzammil Pasha, Sayed Salahuddin/Reuters)

tearing down of confederate statue at UNC

Police stand guard after protesters tore down the “Silent Sam” Confederate statue at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, which was considered destruction of state property.

 

Condoleeza Rice

 

Condoleezza Rice, former 66th Secretary of State, explained her view about destroying history to the Washington Examiner. She believes that the Confederate statues and associated names of schools and universities should be used as teaching tools. It is as a way to understand history even as we learn not to celebrate it.

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This is why we, the Believers in Christ and of the dignity of all people who were created in the image of God, must not forget to pray.  We must pray for each other, all mankind of every nationality and the government leaders around the world, who have the power to turn our world upside down.

We are a fragile world.

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”  Nelson Mandela, former Pres. of South Africa

If my people will humble themselves

 

Video: Turn up sound

 

 

 

 


D Day Must NEVER be Forgotten

D Day graves at Normandy France

Saturday, June 6, is the date we remember  D-Day

This Day of courage must never be pushed into the background while the world looks on at the daily news.  Boyer Writes honors all those who bravely faced the possibility of certain death for the cause of freedom

On Omaha Beach alone, 2,400 American lives were lost…as were many thousands more of our allied countries during the war.

 

Day Day 2

Here are some facts about that day when so many were brave!

  • The First D-Day Happened in the early 1900’s

D-Day-Facts

The term D-Day is a generic term used by the military since the early 1900s to describe the date a combat operation takes place. Because of the monumental nature of the Allied invasion of Normandy, that day on June 6th 1944 became legendary. Ever since, people have been fascinated by D-Day facts, and the term D-Day for most people now means the date in history when the Allies started to win the war in Europe.

  • D-Day Could Have Happened A Day Earlier on June 5th, 1944

D-Day was actually supposed to happen the day before, on June 5th 1944. However, because of bad weather, it was decided that the D-Day invasion would take place the following day, on June 6th.D Day3

  • D-Day Changed the Landscape and History of Normandy

The D-Day invasion took place in a coastal area of France, known as Normandy. Despite the region’s rich history, it is now most famously remembered as the scene of this bloody invasion

  • D-Day Was Code named Neptune by the Allies

The code name for the Normandy Landings was Operation Neptune. Neptune is the Greek god of the sea, and it’s a fitting name, considering the invasion was launched from the sea.Landscape

 

  • German Troops Didn’t Leave the Islands Around Normandy until 1945

Although the Allies were successful in their invasion of Normandy, it was nearly a year later, on May 9th 1945, that the entire German occupation of Normandy, including the surrounding islands, was completely ended.D Day 8

  • Operation Bodyguard Was a Fake Allied Operation to Hide D-Day Plans

In order to deceive the Germans, the Allies created a fake operation, Operation Bodyguard. This way, the Germans would not be sure of the exact date and location of the main Allied landings.

  • There Were Multiple Fake D-Day Plans

There were actually multiple fake operations designed to deceive the Germans. These included fake operations detailing attacks to the north and south of the actual landing points in Normandy. Some efforts were even made to make the Germans think that the attack would take place in Norway!

D Day 4 - Copy

  • Normandy Was a Tourist and Resort Area Before D-Day

One of the lesser-known D-Day facts is that the beaches of Normandy were a popular destination for visitors to the Atlantic coast before World War II. From the 1800s onwards, Normandy was a popular seaside tourist area. There are still many beautiful towns and resorts on the Normandy coast.

 

  • D-Day Was Planned for a Full Moon To Give Aircraft Better Sight

The Allies wanted a full moon to provide better sight for their aircraft. They also wanted to have one of the highest tides. The invasion was carefully scheduled to land partway between low tide and high tide, with the tide coming in.D Day 7

  • D-Day was the Largest Multi-National Invasion in History

The Normandy Landings known as D-Day were a multinational effort, with many countries involved. The Allied forces invading Normandy included troops from the United States, Britain, Canada, Poland, France, and more countries.D Day 11

 

  • The Allied Forces Were 5 Years Younger than the Germans on Average

Many D-Day facts focus on the armaments each side had during the invasion. A lesser-known fact is the age of the German and the Allied forces. The German forces, due to heavy losses on the Eastern Front, no longer had a large population of young men to enlist. German soldiers were, on average, more than 5 years older than their Allied counterparts.

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  • D-Day Began when Troops Gathered on British Soil in June 1944

A lot of D-Day facts focus on Normandy, where the Allies landed. A commonly asked question is “where did the Allies launch their invasion?” The Normandy landings were conducted from across the English Channel, with troops first gathering on British soil before launching the attack on that fateful day in June 1944.

D Day 9

  • D-Day was Only the First Part of a Larger Plan to Retake Europe

The D-Day invasion, codenamed Operation Neptune, was part of a larger plan to take the European continent back from the Germans. Operation Overlord was the name assigned to the large-scale plan, and Operation Neptune was the first phase of the plan.

 

  • The Draft of the D-Day Plan was First Accepted in 1943

Planning for the D-Day invasion began long before the event actually took place. Historical D-Day facts reveal that an initial draft of the invasion plan was accepted at a conference in August 1943.

D Day 10

  • British General Bernard Montgomery Helped Eisenhower Plan D-Day

While a lot of D-Day facts focus on the numbers of ships, troops and military armaments, one fact that is often overlooked is the number of generals who planned the invasion. There were two generals: United States General Dwight D. Eisenhower and British General Bernard Montgomery planned the attack. It should be noted that Eisenhower was the Commander in Chief of Operation Overlord.

  • D-Day was the Largest Invasion by the Sea in History

Eisenhower and Montgomery reviewed the initial plans for D-Day and decided that a larger-scale invasion would be necessary. The goal of the Allies was to allow operations to move quickly, and to capture ports that were strategic to the overall plan of retaking the European continent.

  • More Than 150,000 Troops Landed on 50 miles of Beach on D-Day

It may be the epic scale of the D-Day invasion that explains just why people are so fascinated by D-Day facts. It was one of the largest single military operations of all time, with more than 150,000 troops landing on five beaches in just a 50-mile stretch of land.

  • 7 Days After D-Day More Than 300,000 Troops Had Landed

The first set of troops landing at Normandy signaled only the beginning of the invasion. Within seven days, the beaches where the Allies landed on D-Day were fully under their control. Get ready for some more massive D-Day facts! By that time, more than 300,000 troops, 50,000 vehicles and over 100,000 tons of equipment had been brought through the beaches of Normandy! By the end of June 1944, the Allies had brought over 850,000 troops through the beaches of Normandy and ports that had been opened up as a result of the D-Day invasion.APTOPIX France D-Day Anniversary

  • Omaha Beach Was 1 of 5 Main Beaches of the D-Day Invasion

The Allies divided the 50 miles of the Normandy coast into five beaches, or sections. The beaches at Normandy were named: Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword.

  • Weather Delayed the D-Day Invasion by 1 Day

Many military historians who are interested in D-Day facts discuss how the weather impacted the D-Day invasion. In addition to delaying the invasion by one day, the weather blew the boats of the Allies east of their planned landing targets. This was especially true for the Utah and Omaha beach landing targets.

  • The Terrain of Omaha Beach Caused the High Number of Casualties

Omaha Beach was one of the areas where the Allies suffered the most casualties. The geography of the area played a role in the high number of casualties at Omaha Beach. High cliffs that lined the beach characterized the geography of the Omaha Beach landing target. Many American forces lost their lives because the Germans had gun positions on these high cliffs.

D Day Army Rangers.scaled cliffsjpg

The cliffside of Pointe du Hoc overlooking Omaha Beach in Saint-Pierre-du-Mont, Normandy, France. On June 6, 1944, U.S. Rangers scaled the coastal cliffs to capture a German gun battery. (Virginia Mayo / AP Picture below)

FILE PHOTO: Handout photo of a U.S. flag used as a marker on a destroyed bunker at Pointe du Hoc

  • More than 4,000 Allied Soldiers Died on D-Day

The saddest D-Day facts are the number of people who were injured, and the number of people who died, as a result of the invasion of Normandy. Due to the position of the German forces and the defenses they had built, the Allies suffered over 10,000 casualties, with over 4,000 people confirmed dead.

  • Over 2,400 American Soldiers Were Killed on Omaha Beach on D-Day

D-Day facts reveal that over 2,400 Americans were killed or injured on Omaha Beach. This was as a result of the geography of the Omaha Beach landing target, and the weather that had blown the ships off their target. The weather had also led to the sinking of some tanks which were intended to provide support for the troops landing at Omaha Beach. The high number of casualties at Omaha was also in part due to the lack of artillery providing reinforcements for the troops.

  • Germans Had Less Casualties on D-Day Due to their Positions

Due to their positions, the Germans suffered fewer casualties than the invading Allied troops at Normandy. However, the Germans had no reinforcements to help them retake positions. Once the Allies had landed at Normandy, they took control of the beaches and continued until all of Europe was free.

The massive scale of the D-Day invasion and its important role in World War II make D-Day facts fascinating, even today. Many people lost their lives fighting on the fateful day of June 6th 1944. The

Normandy landings were the beginning of a larger plan to retake Europe and codenamed Operation Overlord. Had the D-Day invasion failed, the result of World War II may have been very different. Thankfully, despite a heavy loss of life, the Allies were ultimately successful in taking the beaches of Normandy and retaking Europe.


  • Facts about D-Day Invasion Summary

D-Day facts continue to fascinate people, even more than 50 years after the D-Day invasion took place. We gathered interesting facts about that fateful day on June 6th 1944, when the large-scale invasion of Normandy, France took place. D-Day marked a turning point in World War II and dictated the course of history.
Military historians are interested in D-Day facts because of the sheer scale of the invasion. The saddest D-Day facts are those relating to the losses the Allies suffered during the course of the invasion. The people who lost their lives on the beaches of Normandy did not do so in vain, as D-Day marked the beginning of the Allies retaking Europe. (taken from Interesting Facts)

75th Remembrance of D-Day in 2019 Slide Presentation (Wait a moment for slide to change)

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Life Histories…Will We LEARN?

“THOSE WHO FAIL TO LEARN FROM HISTORY ARE CONDEMNED TO REPEAT IT.”

  Winston Churchill to the House of Commons, 1948

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This famous quote is one to strongly consider as we think about our nation and the world today.  We thought we had conquered most of the world’s diseases, then the Coronavirus moved around the world. 

We thought we had crossed through the problems of discrimination after the tragic assassination of Dr. Martin Luther, Jr…then came more deaths for many people of all colors. We are faced with problems today that could be disastrous for us all. There are those who simply want their voices heard, justice done and then there are the anarchists among us who want to destroy peace and accomplishments of many. What we thought had been attained through new laws of the land against racism and civil rights for all can be destroyed within an instance if lawlessness is allowed to continue. We ask ourselves, “What is next and what has happened to the democratic way of life? Where is law and order?” 

There are forces at work to disrupt anything peaceful.  Some are outsiders, who mean no good will. These forces will take advantage of every tragic event to move our civilization toward something even more tragic. What would that be is not fully known, but the loss of lawfulness, the democratic way and the sanctity of all men and women could be only a starter.

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What exactly is “sanctity?”  It has to do with being sacred or morally upright and correct.”  Is nothing sacred anymore?  Does the hard work of people building businesses, which support our communities…for all races…make it right to “smash…grab…and run”… while laughing about it?!

The values that were taught in most families…about stealing or destroying seems to mean nothing to many who have been given so much by the previous generation? There were marches in Selma; men and women of all colors who went off to war to fight for world freedom.  Do they understand the sacrifices of history? If not, do we blame ourselves for not teaching it more in schools or in the home?  Will these young adults who believe they are changing the world teach their own children the meaning of sacrifice and sanctity? Do they “care less” when it comes to destroying and looting?

broken glass2

A man records the broken glass during protests

Yes, there are voices that need to be heard, but all people, through our Constitution and laws, have been given a right to freedom of speech when voicing complaints…and should and can be heard without destroying the center of their own universe.  (“…the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress…”) There is no right given to plunder, steal or take the property of another.

We have also seen how situations can turn from bad to worse when people are singled out because of who they are…minorities…police…the calling of disparaging names because of one’s belief on a particular subject. The victims of violence should be able to mourn their dead. The victim’s memories should be honored, not exploited.

While government officials argue about what to do in this crisis, the “rape” of hard-working American men and women’s businesses goes on…destroying the lives of many.

Jueenhan Moon Reuters Photo credit

BREAK, GRAB, STEAL during protests Photo credit Jueenhan Moon Reuters

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Do not forget history.  It teaches us everything…to do and not to do. It tells us how fragile governments can be when those who believe their ideas are the only ideas, regardless of who they hurt, begs the possibility of raising up leaders to push the world into a brink of despair and even war. We have seen it in our best teacher…HISTORY.

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 Let’s take a look back.

There were good people in Germany before World War II who saw that the path on which their country was heading would lead Germany and other countries into chaos.  Even within the high-ranking military and Christian churches, there were dissidents who stood against Hitler. There were actually six attempts to do away with Hitler, but each failed.

1944 Plot:  …”At the center of this plot was Claus von Stauffenberg, a dashing colonel who had lost an eye and one of his hands during combat in North Africa. He and his co-conspirators—who included Tresckow, Friedrich Olbricht and Ludwig Beck—planned to kill the Führer with a hidden bomb concealed in a briefcase and then use the German Reserve Army to topple the Nazi high command. If their coup was successful, the rebels would then immediately seek a negotiated peace with the Allies. ( Full story of 6 plots  History.com)

 When the bomb exploded, more than 20 people were injured and three officers were killed, but Hitler escaped one more time.  Because of this attempt, more than 7,000 people were arrested and 4,980 people were executed by the Gestapo.” (History Collection)

picture of Hitler and Strassenberg who attemted to kill Hitler

At Rastenburg on 15 July 1944. Stauffenberg at left, Hitler center, Keitel on right. The person shaking hands with Hitler is General Karl Bodenschatz, who was seriously wounded five days later by Stauffenberg’s bomb. Wikipedia

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Anarchy is raising an ugly head in today’s modern world.  The very word, from the Latin word, anarchia, and the Greek, anarchos, has the meaning of “no rule.”  (Wikipedia)

We, as a nation of people, have a choice to stand for what is right and honorable…or loss control. Don’t forget “Kristallnacht” (The Night of Broken Glass)  when storefronts belonging to the Jews were shattered. Glass littered the streets and vandalism occurred. Sound familiar?

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I leave you with a compelling life of a survivor of one of history’s darkest hours.  At first it began slowly and then the blaming of an entire group of people began.  The innocent were accused…and the rest is “history.”  We pray that this part of our present day history will not be another dark hour.

Hannah Pick Goslar
Life of Hannah Elizabeth Goslar Pick:
  • Born in 1928 in Berlin. Hannah’s father was Head of the Prussian Press Bureau and adviser to the Minister of Interior of Brandenburg, Germany. In 1933, with the rise of the Nazis to power, Hannah’s family fled to Amsterdam.
  • There, at school, Hannah met Anna Frank, also a refugee from Germany. 
  • In October 1942, while giving birth, both the baby and Hannah’s mother died.
  • On June 20, 1943, Hannah, her younger sister, Gabi, her father and grandparents were sent to the Westerbork transit camp.
  • Hannah and Gabi were separated from their father and sent to the orphanage in the camp. There, she worked cleaning the toilets 
  • In 1944, Hannah, her father and sister were transferred to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp where she had to do forced labor.
  • When she was told that Anna Frank was also imprisoned there she managed to establish contact with her and even tried to give her a package of food and clothing, which someone else stole.

    Hannah Goslar and Ann Frank

    Ann Frank and Hannah were friends in Amsterdam

  • Hanna’s Father and Grandparents were murdered in Bergen-Belsen.
  • On April 11, 1945, the camp inmates were evacuated. Hannah had contracted typhus.
  • In June, the Soviets handed Hannah and her sister to the Americans and they were returned to Amsterdam.
  • Hannah went to Israel in 1947 and lived in Kfar Hasidim. She worked as a nurse in a pediatric ward at the ‘Bikkur Holim’ Hospital in Jerusalem.  (from Yad Vashem)

    Young Hannah Pick Goslar

    Young adult Hannah Pick Goslar

In Hannah’s own words:

Video  Turn up your sound.

 


Military Sunday…COST of Freedom

Our National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. and in various churches, this Sunday, May 17, 2020, will be honoring our brave military who have served faithfully for our freedom and democracy.  We must remember that there was great cost.

fallen brought home with honor

 

What exactly is FREEDOM and its COST to us today?

This might be the time to ask ourselves some hard questions, as we have been told recently that we must forfeit many of our freedoms for the “good of all.”  We have to ask ourselves what will be the great cost to our democracy and freedom, as we see many private decisions slowly drifting…or rapidly falling into someone else’s hands to make choices for us….such as when we can work, run our businesses, shop, go to school etc. etc. ?

We, as citizens, appreciate warnings to potential danger and given a heads-up to prepare individually and within our community…just as we do when a devastating hurricane is approaching Florida or any part of our country.

I can never remember our local news saying “You are mandated to board up your house and stay inside because you could die from this approaching storm!!” 

They just inform us and expect that as responsible people we will prepare and do what is right for us and the neighbors around us.  Is EVERYONE always responsible?  NEVER...not in the past and not in the future. Some houses blow away and people are sometimes killed, but we then try to help as much as possible to rebuild lives.  One thing is certain, people are generous, helpful and outright heroic in many situations.  Most do not expect government handouts unless they are in dire need. Faith based organizations hand out food with these disasters and as they are doing now.

This is DEMOCRACY…and personal responsibility. This is what our military men and women have bravely fought to maintain.

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No governments… local, national, or international are able to have perfect answers when they begin dictating to the masses.  State and community rules/regulations that help our society are expected, when they don’t interfere with with our Constitutional rights that will be discussed later.  The individual is the patriot, the guy next door…like all of our military.

Our honored military have sacrificed so much for their country’s freedom. Do you think they were afraid?  Of course they were, but they knew without freedom we would have nothing to live for.  They went…They served…and they are loved for it!   Are people afraid today? Yes, for certain, if they are about to lose everything they have worked hard for over the years or if they have elderly parents who are facing things alone.   Wars were fought to keep our independence, starting with the Revolutionary War.

  • WHY did the U.S. and other freedom loving countries get involved in the wars listed below?  There is a simple answer….

TO PROTECT OUR FREEDOM TO MAKE OUR OWN WAY OF LIFE AND DECISIONS WITHOUT INTERVENTION FROM A DICTATORSHIP...whatever the name may be.

  • Why should we be concerned today?  I’m certain you are pondering your answer.
  • There is also another question that we should be asking ourselves:

_____________________

How do countries slowly, or not so slowly, lose their independence and freedom of choice?

“Although regimes vary widely, most dictators have at least a few things in common. They don’t come to power through free, constitutional elections. They often take control during coups d’etats, revolutions or…

states of emergency.

Once they have control, they have absolute, sole power.”  (Encyclopedia Britannica)

  • What about deaths brought on by men who cared nothing about freedom for their citizens…only about their own power?

(Deaths caused by three of the worst dictators: Joseph Stalin 43,000,000 Mao Zedong 38,000,000+ Adolf Hitler 21,000,000)

  • What about the dictators of today’s communist countries to whom we are giving much of our allegiance…wealth and intellectual property?

At the present time, we know there are gulags around the world where thousands are languishing and dying because they have no voice and are arrested with no recourse for protesting or speaking out about their government’s activities.  (The term, gulag, is a prison camp where conditions are extremely bad and the prisoners are forced to work very hard. The name gulag comes from the prison camps in the former Soviet Union.) Collins dictionary

Auschwitz2

AUSCHWITZ WORLD WAR II

___________________

Military conflict has taken place during every year of the 20th Century. There were only short periods of time that the world was free of war. The total number of deaths caused by war during the 20th Century has been estimated at 187 million and is probably higher.  (from Imperial War Museums)

20th and 21st Century’s major wars:

  • The First World War 1914–1918
  • The Second World War  1939–1945  
  • The Korean War  1950–1953

Slide presentation:  (Give each picture a moment to change)

 

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  • The Vietnam War, 1955-75
  • The Gulf War, 1990–1991
  • The War in Afghanistan 2001–2014
  • The Iraq War and Insurgency, 2003–2011
  • The Global War on Terrorism, 2001–present

 

__________________________

Our freedom today in America and around the world is due to those who were willing to stand up and go into harms way to defend freedom.  This is why we honor them today in our churches, who still have church services…via the internet and TV broadcasts.  Because most churches place the physical health of their congregations as a priority, it was only the wise thing to do until they were able to assemble together again.  How to do this was up to the church to decide what was best to continue giving people the opportunity to worship.   Faith is alive and well, even if it is a family gathering around the TV at home. Underground churches have had to find creative ways to worship God in the past and present throughout the world.

A minister was arrested in Florida for not closing his church, which caused infection to spread from those not knowing they were carrying the Coronavirus. This act of defiance by the pastor, which was totally unwise at the time, lead the Governor of Florida to make this statement as the right to worship was being challenged by the local authority:

“I don’t know that [governments] would have the authority, quite frankly, to close a religious institution.” Governor DeSantis said in deciding not to shutter churches in Florida. “The Constitution doesn’t get suspended here.”

______________________

  • What does our U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights guarantee us?

Our Constitution, through Amendment 1, guarantees FREEDOM of RELIGION, SPEECH, PRESS, PEACEABLE ASSEMBLY and petition of grievances.  Many young men and women have been willing to die for this freedom.  Many have!

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

US. ConstitutionBill of Rights

 

To all our military…from all wars…we THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE AND YOUR DEDICATION TO FREEDOM!

American flag held high

Honoring those who serve

Footnote:

My husband ,who is a retired U.S. Navy Chaplain, will be presenting the sermon from St. James Episcopal Church in Florida.  This will be taped ahead of time to be aired on  Sunday, May 17.  If interested in watching, it can be viewed on YouTube any time on or after May 17.  (Go to YouTube and type St. James Episcopal Church, Leesburg, Florida to view and choose the service for May 17.)

 

 


Wake Up, Young People…the Future is YOURS!

It is not often that I make any part of my blogging offensive…or in this case, politically offensive, as most politics is!  However, after years of study, teaching and travel, it is alarming to me that our young adults may have not been taught by adults, parents and teachers, enough HISTORY to make rational judgments as they get into the exciting position of having an actual vote.

Our country and states are gearing up for the “get out the vote”day…whether it is Super Tuesday or another time. Those running for office must be really tired of “running,” but not as much as we are from seeing them run!

Over and over again, we have heard the statement “Let me be clear!” It better be clear …more than clear, if we look at the nations of the world throughout history and what happened to them if they went down the road of total government control.  It is pretty forward and simple:

Socialism is the first step toward Communism…and what a dismal record it has! The voice of the people will eventually be taken away and personal freedom perish. Communism, that started with people rising up for an attempt for change, equality and fairness, never got what they wanted. The leaders promised the world to them and then brought the world down on the heads of those who simply wanted better lives.  Sounds good at first, but doesn’t work because the power-hungry leaders (or dictators) can’t make it work. The first thing that happens is that anyone with a voice of protest or even appears to be anti-government will be taken care of one way or another. We know about some of those leaders from our history books: Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Castro… and many more in places around the world like China.

Let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves because this blog is about our young people and what they know about history.  Our youth are enthusiastic, energetic and wonderfully young! God bless them all, but the picture probably is not really clear for them.     Yet, the message MUST BE MADE clear for our young adults if their future is to be one of freedom and opportunity!

The New York Times just printed an article written by Patricia Mazzer and Sydney Ember which proves the point of what I am writing about as they interviewed some of our young voters. Here is what one 18-year-old had to say which may be a reflection of many young people:

“Socialism is a supposedly scary term that we’ve talked about so much, but we really don’t understand,” said Nolan …, 18, a chemistry major at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he cast a ballot early Wednesday, before its primary next week. In a society where technology is so important, where it takes fewer people to produce more things, we’re going to have to have a more socialistic society, where the government needs to step in more,” he said. “The government is going to be required to do more, and it’s something we should welcome, not be afraid of.” 

Are they still teaching about these uprisings for social justice and the results, Nolan?  As a young chemistry student, you have the world ahead of you in science…to explore, to invent, to bring something wonderful to society…unless the government tells you differently.  Think about it! 

OK, any young person reading this blog,  I’m old enough to be your Grandmother, but I have observed a few things as I taught young people, traveled with them to foreign countries and heard their dreams and hopes just like yours!

Young Adults

Intelligent, young adults whose future is theirs!

 

Examples of Socialism that became Communism…the Results: 

As I traveled with students and around the world, I saw the results of socialism that became communism. In many cases, it was heartbreaking…and this is just the tip of the problem with this form of government.   I’d like to share with you what I experienced from firsthand knowledge:

  • When I took young people to Eastern Europe, we visited Russia.  There were large department stores with almost nothing to show on any floor…a table here and there with little to sell.

 

  • A dump truck with grain was in front of our bus and the grain was flying all over the road.  Asking my Dutch driver why the Russians didn’t cover it, he laughingly said, “The government will pay them the same no matter how much they deliver. They don’t care.”

 

  •  Almost every few miles, there were ramps built for cars to drive on, in order to fix whatever was broken.  Parts, of any kind, were extremely hard to get and the people had to make do. Most of the equipment was not for the people but for the Soviet military that continued to move aggressively into neighboring countries.   Things like refrigerators and other household goods, looked like they were from the 1950s.

 

  • As we were leaving Russia for Poland, the bus passed lines and lines of cars waiting on the side of the road. “What are they doing?” I asked.   “They have a one day pass to go into Poland to shop because that is where the supplies are plentiful, which they can’t get in Russia.”

 

  • In Poland, we met an elderly woman who had a fine business and a large home. Her story was when she and her husband were invited to South America to help with an agricultural project, their home was taken over by the government because the authorities believed it was too big for two people.  The house was divided up into several tiny apartments for more people to live in because it was “only fair.”  She had no freedom to complain.  After the fall of communism, she was told by the new government that she and her husband could “buy it back.”

 

  • Also while we were in Poland, we visited Auschwitz Concentration Camp where one of my Jewish students laid a wreath for the millions murdered.  We all know that when a government decides that some people are not wanted what happens to them. There are people around the world who are disappearing or hidden away in some horrible prison…many being political prisoners.  (A political prisoner is someone imprisoned because they have opposed or criticized the government responsible for their imprisonment. Wikipedia)

 

  •   When I was in Ukraine, I taught in a beautiful little place called Donetsk at a thriving University. Only recently, Russian-backed troops took over the University and sent staff and students home. Donetsk Christian University now houses the military. 

 

  • A friend of mine that I met at the Ukraine University writes us that the Russian government is now having committees formed by the government to decide if certain churches or Christian organizations can continue to have permission to be open in Russia.

 

  • Recently, I viewed a documentary about the one-child policy in China (now a 2-child policy) and the kidnapping of young boys in that country to be sold.  Couples are forced to get permission from the government to have children. If not, the unborn child should be aborted, as have millions of babies in China…even until the 8th or 9th month.  Should the couple refuse, they said that they knew eventually they would have to sell the child because the government would then come in and take away everything in their home, leaving them totally unable to function.  They told a handler, who deals with the government and those who can pay to buy a child, that they hope he could “find a good home for the child…perhaps somewhere in the West.”  The young couple interviewed talked about the trafficking and selling of children and teenage girls to become mothers, for more trafficking of babies. (UTube “China’s Stolen Children”)

 

  • During the Nazi invasion of Norway, all radios were confiscated from the people. A lady we visited there told us that they raided her home and removed her radio. With any aggression the first thing to go is communication.  Even now, we know that what news comes out of a communist country is tightly censored, which makes one question the real numbers relating to the Coronavirus.

These are only a few of the tragedies that happen when a country thinks it would be better off becoming a socialist country.  Some may say, ” What about the good things that are part of European governments, that consider themselves to be socialists? They get free health care etc. etc.”  Yes, and their taxes are huge!   As to health care, I was once told by a European that it is true that they can get “free” health care, but if you want the best or quickest care….you “pay under the table”, so to speak.

What About Reform?

Is our American government perfect?  Of course not. We need reform in many areas. Reform in areas, like health care, immigration and policies of all kinds, should be seriously looked at by our freely, elected government representatives…that is when they decide to get to work on reforms rather than fighting one another!   No government is perfect because people are imperfect, but some are greater than others.   Ask any veteran who fought to give us freedom of speech and openness of the press, freedom of religion and a right to be, do and live our own lives without government intervention…or fear of imprisonment or torture. It is what we have in America…at least for now…and how blessed we are!

Again, I would admonish our young voters to “Wake up, do your homework and give yourselves a great future that you will work hard for and deserve!”  


Frozen Legs Miracle…A Veteran’s Story

9-11 flags (2)Boyer Writes honors all Veterans

THANK YOU for your service to our country!

  While living part-time in Virginia, my husband and I were honored to interview a number of veterans of the Blue Ridge Mountain area.  Many had never been interviewed about their service and were happy to finally tell their stories. This led to the writing of our book entitled Men and Women of Valor in the Blue Ridge.

Their stories were amazing.  We were honored to meet Sharon Plichta and her husband who served in Vietnam. Sharon was a military nurse who earned the Bronze Star for her bravery caring for the wounded under fire.

SH74B3~1

Sharon receives Bronze Star

The veteran that I’d like to share with you from this book is Myron Cardward Harold of M.C., as he was called.  He served in Korea with the U.S. Army’s 40th Division, 22nd Regiment.  He was 21 years old as he fought across Heartbreak Ridge.MCYOUN~1

Here is a part of the chapter featuring this soldier of Valor in Korea:

Myron C. Harold, better known as “MC” has an amazing story of bravery when he served his country in the United States Army during the Korean War. He was a Staff Sergeant who almost lost both his legs. The fighting had been so terrible in the middle of winter on what is known as Heartbreak Ridge and they were walking and fighting at night through the mountains. His legs were beginning to freeze and he was picked up in a truck and taken to a field hospital at the Yalu River.
When he arrived at a medic station, the soles of his shoes were worn out and flapping. By this time, both legs had frozen. The surgeons said, “We must take these legs off now. It can’t wait. We must do it now.” MC was prepared to face whatever he had to in order to live.
He says he does not remember getting to the medics. Now they were about to remove his legs and send him back to the Blue Ridge Mountains, where they had large fruit orchards that his father had started years before.
The surgeon that day in Korea wanted to help MC stand on his legs one more time before performing the operation. When he did, MC recalls with tears in his eyes, “It felt like a shot had gone all through my body.”   Immediately the surgeon recognized that the blood had started flowing throughout MC’s legs. Removing the legs would not be necessary. “That was my miracle,” MC said with tears in his eyes.

After returning from Korea, MC and his son grew many acres of apples in the Blue Ridge. Today, as an elderly man, he is a resident at the V.A. hospital in Virginia.  He had survived to tell his story of God’s miracle in a land far away. MCANDS~1

Other veterans of the Blue Ridge interviewed served in Vietnam, Korea, and World War II.   They stand proud with all their comrades in arms who have faithfully served.

They are:

  • Rob Redus ( In submarines…Vietnam)
  • Dr. Tom Whartenby (Vietnam)
  • Clinton Moles (World War II)
  • Leonard Marshall (Survived the sinking of the USS Gambier  by the Japanese)
  • Troy Davis (World War II and recently passed away in Spain)
  • Elmo McAlexander as an Army Medic during the Cold War
  • Frank and Sharan Plichta (Vietnam)
  • Paul Childress (World War II under Patton and guarded Dachau prisoner)
  • Tommy Ellis  (Served in the Marines and regularly is in an Honor Guard for those veterans who pass away.)   Roy McAlexander also has served hundreds of the fallen at funerals.

Men and Women of Valor (3)To those who may be interested in the many stories of honor and courage in Men and Women of Valor in the Blue Ridge Click here           

 

 

Video below:  God Bless the USA


Are the Values of Family, Friendship and Faith lost?

     A reader and friend sent me this blog concerning terrible events that have happened just this week.  It is worth a read.   For the most part, what he says makes sense because many of our young adults, who commit mass murders, have lost the emphasis on family, friendship and faith…if they were ever taught such by their parents or guardians. Yes, there will be the mentally ill that have lost all sense of values, but there has to be a start toward teaching and expecting that our young adults will grow up with any understanding of right and wrong in society and toward other human beings.
Below is the blog sent to me written by

“The recent rash of mass shootings has left the nation stunned but, sadly, not speechless. The usual media and political suspects are saying the usual things, using the bodies of the innocent as a sickening ideological soapbox.

We’re not going to do that here. These gruesome murders are not about, nor caused by, politics. Rather, they are the unavoidable and perhaps unstoppable product of a deeply diseased culture. A culture which has become the perfect growth medium for psychopathy.

“Loners” are no longer alone when in their online worlds. They can communicate without actual human contact. They can find reinforcement for their darkest and most twisted thoughts and fantasies. They can give the worst demons of their psyches an artificial, external life in cyberspace… free to express hatred and anger anonymously and without consequence. And on the Internet, madness can hide in plain sight. 

After all, who’s going to notice or care about garden variety insanity in a world which routinely describes everyone as murderous: baby killers on one side, Earth-destroying Nazis on the other. The stakes are absolute, the “other” is the enemy, and words are just words…until they become actions.

The social mechanisms which formerly prevented these massacres have crumbled the bonds of family, friendship, and faith…a shared sense of community, optimism about the future, moral certainty and personal responsibility.

Instead, we now live in a crowded world of communal loners, all staring at their phones instead of the world and people around them. Politicians and media figures preach an unsubtle and dangerously divisive message of absolutes: you are either on this side or that, either all good or all evil. There is no middle ground – only calls for action. Calls that the wrong people are hearing.

We live in a culture in which too many feel they have no meaning or importance, but believe that one spectacular act of madness can give them the instant celebrity which defines success in a sick society. And so they kill to feel alive…to experience an illusion of power at the expense of the powerless. And even knowing the likelihood that they will be killed during their heinous act, they believe they will live eternally in the electronic ether, washed in the blood of the sacrificed.

Gun control can not and will not change any of this. The phenomena of mass shootings is, in fact, unstoppable absent a wholesale change in our culture, our way of life, and our society’s unhealthy obsession with an inhuman and inhumane electronic world.

The good news is that the vast majority of people still retain values strong enough to keep them morally centered in our crumbling culture. The bad news is that unless those values can regain cultural dominance, and unless we can replace combativeness and angry confrontation with honest conversation, mass murder will continue to be our inescapable new normal.”

Boyer Writes’ footnote:
As to most things I read, I don’t always agree with every sentence.
Mr. Jarlsberg says “Gun control will not fix any of this.”  I believe only the military needs a machine gun and that should be on a battlefield.  Furthermore, no one needs guns with the ability to shoot hundreds of rounds rapid-fire as have been used in these terrible incidents.
Anyone who enjoys being a hunter knows it only takes a shot or two to bring down the hunted. I personally could never kill a bird or any animal…but that is me.  Some special type guns are not needed by society, but their ability to have a weapon for self-defense is a right, if they feel a need for it.  Children don’t need to be near any of these weapons because daddy is not going to send them out to hunt for their next meal like in the old days on the frontier.
So what do we do to instill in our children, who will be the next generation of young adults the value of family, faith and friendship?  It may seem silly to some, but parents might want to think about reading the 10 Commandments before a meal or bedtime so that children understand God’s formula for doing the right thing, which leads to a happy life and a respect for others. Of course, the parent will need to explain what is meant by God’s laws of conduct.   This might be, however, a start to re-introducing faith into our homes, even if they are not churchgoers.  Most every religion would adhere to these teachings. In case you can’t recite them all without looking them up, here they are:
  1. You shall have no other Gods but Me.
  2. You shall not make for yourself any idol, nor bow down to it or worship it.
  3. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.
  4. You shall remember and keep the Sabbath day holy.
  5. Respect your father and mother.
  6. You must not commit murder.
  7. You must not commit adultery.
  8. You must not steal.
  9. You must not give false evidence against your neighbor.
  10. You must not be envious of your neighbor’s goods. You shall not be envious of his house nor his wife, nor anything that belongs to your neighbor.

We have to begin somewhere to heal our society.  It’s bigger than any law or any revision of laws…for it has to start in the heart.  It will take all Americans working together for a peaceful life for us and our children.

 

For all those who have suffered great loss, we, at Boyer Writes, dedicate this video. Turn up your sound and quietly listen to the words.


The Cross…A Symbol of HOPE

It has been some time ago that the world, through their TV channels, watched the spire of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris fall into the blazing fire and smoke below.  Yet, a cross that hung in the cathedral survived.

It may be time now to think about the power of the cross as a symbol of hope.  The cross is not a symbol of hope fo everyone. Yet it is powerful, whether they think so or not.  There may have been some who rejoiced as the cathedral burned because they wished any symbol of Christianity to be destroyed. Just as terrorists wanted the World Trade Towers to no longer be the symbol of economic power, their evil minds set out to destroy them.  Symbols, in themselves, do have power to renew our minds and thoughts to something that can become even greater. That is true of the two symbols that are written about in this blog post.  The cross being our greatest hope…not wealth, but faith.

A Cross was erected from the rubble of 9-11

In place of those fallen towers, where thousands died…Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu and many others with faiths… as well as atheists and agnostics, a great new tower was built. A grand memorial to all who died and suffered that terrible day now stands deep in the belly of the new, grand building.

We remember also over 2,000 First Responders who have died or sick years afterward from illnesses that came upon them trying to reach the victims. This has led President Trump to sign the 9-11 Victims’ Fund to those still suffering.

Tragedies often bring about in the human spirit a desire to rebuild, to remember and to fight against such atrocities and those who propose them.

First Responders in front of St Paul Chapel

St. Paul Chapel became a resting place and prayer for first responders.  (Associated Press)

Instead of shocking, deliberate attacks, such as those on the World Trade Center, Pentagon or the intended attack on the White House, a few are accidental as the burning of the great Cathedral of Notre Dame.  The world was dismayed for another reason as we recognized the value of a great work of architecture that had stood for over 850 years, having taken 200 years to build. It was a prize of history, being one of the most famous Gothic cathedrals of the Middle Ages. This church was not only a symbol of Christianity but of the culture and the magnificent antiquities of France.

 

In the Cathedral of Notre Dame hung a cross, which was only exposed after the fires were put out.  Miraculously, it still hung as did some of the magnificent stained glass windows.  The French are determined to rebuild this great church and in doing so, we also can believe that it will be a revival of a great symbol of renewal, endurance, and hope.  The world needs symbols of hope and none is more powerful than the cross and the great buildings in which a cross is lovingly placed.

Recently, I saw a video of a church standing on an island in Japan. Inside was a great cross, stained glass and though the island is now almost deserted, the church still survives in an unlikely place.  Someone build it years ago and it is a symbol of their faith.

Fire ruins of the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris

For all Christians, the real symbol of hope was never burned in that terrible fire in Paris…the great cross of Christ.  That cross, shining bright, amid the ruins of the cathedral, sent the message around the world that the cross of Christ is the true symbol of hope for the world.

Yes, the cathedral will be rebuilt eventually, but the message of Christ in the cross will still shine after the burned rubble is cleared away.   The message it brings is forgiveness, a renewed life, and the promise of life eternal through Christ, the Son of God.

The message in the clearing away of the rubble of the Twin Towers in New York City is that out of the ashes rises the great Phoenix of hope, freedom, democracy and renewal. Even in that terrible attack, St. Paul’s Chapel next door to the towers was not destroyed even though the debris fell all around it.  The 1st President of the United States, George Washington, worshiped in this church.

It was not the first time, however, that this Christian church had escaped being destroyed.  In the first days of the American Revolution, the invasion of British troops sparked the Great Fire of 1776, which destroyed 432 structures in New York. The fire spread to St. Paul’s Chapel and very nearly overwhelmed it, but a bucket brigade managed to squelch the fire.  It is now named as the oldest surviving church in Manhattan.

Symbols are important in our lives.  Some are international, national, or even personal, but they are often a message of joy, inspiration or hope.

(ABC News tour video)  Important:  In order to hear sound on the video, you will have to unclick sound symbol.

https://abcn.ws/2VYew0o

 


The 4th of July and Amazing Grace

We, at Boyer Writes, wish all the lovers of FREEDOM and those who have served to give us lasting freedom, a very HAPPY 4TH of JULY!

Enjoy Music by: Jenny Oaks Baker is a Grammy-nominated American violinist and pianist, Condoleezza Rice who served as the 66th U.S. Secretary of State. Rice was the first female African-American to serve in this position. She also was the second female to serve as the National Security Advisor, after Madeleine Albright. (Wikipedia)

 


America…America…the film

It wasn’t too long ago that my husband and I rode a boat out to see the Statue of Liberty in the New York harbor.   This grand site has been seen by thousands as they entered the waters of a new country in search of their dreams for new life and freedom.  The American flag waved then as it does now…and the thrill was the same.

My ancestors came from Switzerland and England.  My husband’s came from England and Germany. His father’s side farmed in Minnesota.   All had a dream…bringing that dream and hard work with them.  Processing through as immigrants and spreading out into the far corners of the United States,  these Americans have many stories to tell.

Recently, I found a story of another family that came the hard way from Greece and Turkey to join the long line of those arriving.  It has been made into a film by one of the descendants who was about four years old when their family arrived on our shores.  It’s not a new film for it was made in 1963.  However, it is worth the two hours plus of watching the struggles and the triumphs of one determined young man to get to America.

Academy Award and Golden Globe-winning writer and director Elia Kazan (“On the Waterfront,” “A Streetcar Named Desire”) tells the true story of the early life of his uncle, Greek-immigrant Stavros Topouzoglow.  After viewing the introduction by this filmmaker, you may want to order the film called America America.   It is worth the time spent to understand the reasons so many from places all over the world made the decision to forge all obstacles in order to come to our country of opportunity and hope.

america america by elia kazan

Video  (Turn up sound)


A Visiting Professor’s Observation

statue of liberty

It is interesting how someone can come to the United States and have a completely different perspective on the word “democracy.”  We, who live here, become used to how things work in our free society.  The thoughts of a foreign visitor, who is used to a much different society,  brings a new dimension to the very meaning of the word…democracy.  We ask the question then…

“How much does religious freedom play as an encompassing part of democracy?”

 A visiting Chinese professor may have great words of wisdom concerning this matter. Clay Christensen, a professor at Harvard Business School, found friendship with this visitor, who was on a Fulbright Scholarship to the United States, and shares with us his words.   Pay close attention to his final statement.  It is quite chilling.

Short Video:  Please turn up your sound and click the link below:

http://www.youtube.com/watch_p opup?v=YjntXYDPw44&sns=em 


Statistics…and a New Year!

number crunching

For the last nine years, it has been my practice at Boyer Writes to take a look at the statistics provided for me as a writer and blogger by the WordPress nerds who dream in numbers.  They are greatly appreciated for all I have to do is press a key and up comes…the number of people who have read my blog, from what country they have viewed Boyer Writes… and the number of words that have been written by me. How convenient!

My blogging adventure started in 2009.  Just think I am starting right now on my 10th year!   Unlike many bloggers whose following is in the thousands…perhaps millions…mine is 236.  Now, don’t feel sorry for me.  I have also written 377,899 words in my 809 blog posts.  Why do I do it?  Because I love to write and believe that what I have to say is not only important to me, but to those who read and send a note of appreciation.

My readers are special people from all around the world.  Take a look at my map.  These people read something I had to say…bless them… even though they have never stepped foot on the U.S.A soil.  How great is the internet!   It is a special tool that crosses the miles and touches the hearts.  The top of my blog says that I am a “Christian writer” and as such, I enjoy sharing posts that are inspirational.  My categories show a strong interest also in history, the arts and most anything creative.

Below shows the countries that viewed Boyer Writes over the year.  Of course, red is the highest number of views.   Taking a look at these charts may be of interest to you also.

map of viewers around the world over 9 years

These show the countries and the number of times that Boyer Writes was read. Some have high numbers and some only one time.  These may be countries where the people’s ability to go online could be limited for various reasons.

highest numbers viewed

one view from these countries

The statistics are quite interesting…the highs, lows and everything in between…but also the fact that the country’s flags are also shown.   Here are a few of the flag examples:

It may be only one view from any of these countries, but someone there was interested in other parts of the world…and that is what ties us together.   My hope is that the map shown above will also include countries where opportunities to know others and their writings in the world will be part of their lives.

Even though Boyer Writes has been read in most of the world, we are still waiting for North Korea, Greenland, Svalbard (part of northern Norway) and a number of countries in Africa as shown in the green areas.

map of viewers around the world over 9 years

Some of the reasons for those who can’t get online to read a blog or anything else is poverty.  We understand fully that if you can’t afford the next meal, a computer is not in the future for many.  For others, it is a political problem that cuts off the rest of the world from their citizens.   Sad as it may be, there are those nations’ leaders who would like to keep people in total submission.  Freedom, as we know it, is not in their present life.  Let’s hope for better days ahead for many people.

friendship around the world

As we bloggers reach out to the rest of the world, we also enjoy that many times they reach back to us.  My blogger friend in England writes an email on occasion and it is always wonderful to hear from him.   We have an opportunity to follow other bloggers. A special enjoyment for me is the beautiful photography blogs that come my way regularly. Whatever is your interest, seek out a writer and follow him or her in their pursuits and activities around the world.

Since we are entering a New Year, it seems appropriate to share some thoughts of people from the present and the past. These people have wise things to say about living a better life in the future.   You may not agree with all they stand for, but wisdom is wisdom and some of it may need to rub off on us in the next year.  (Taken from another blogger, Henrik Edberg of Sweden)

Thoughts about living life happily …for the New Year

“A loving relationship is one in which the loved one is free to be himself — to laugh with me, but never at me; to cry with me, but never because of me; to love life, to love himself, to love being loved. Such a relationship is based upon freedom and can never grow in a jealous heart.”
– Leo F. Buscaglia

“A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.”
– Walter Winchell

older happy couple

“Whenever you’re in conflict with someone, there is one factor that can make the difference between damaging your relationship and deepening it. That factor is attitude.”
– William James

“When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are.”
– Donald Miller

“If you would be loved, love, and be loveable.”
— Benjamin Franklinman and woman smiling

“No road is long with good company.”
— Turkish Proverb

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
— Carl W. Buechner

“You don’t develop courage by being happy in your relationships everyday. You develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.”— Epicurus

Happy couple embracing and laughing on the beach

“Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust and hostility to evaporate.”
— Albert Schweitzer

“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
— Dale Carnegie

“Relationships-of all kinds-are like sand held in your hand. Held loosely, with an open hand, the sand remains where it is.
The minute you close your hand and squeeze tightly to hold on, the sand trickles through your fingers. You may hold onto some of it, but most will be spilled.
A relationship is like that. Held loosely, with respect and freedom for the other person, it is likely to remain intact. But hold too tightly, too possessively, and the relationship slips away and is lost.”
— Kaleel Jamison

“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one”
— C.S. Lewis

laughing man

 

“Some of the biggest challenges in relationships come from the fact that most people enter a relationship in order to get something: they’re trying to find someone who’s going to make them feel good. In reality, the only way a relationship will last is if you see your relationship as a place that you go to give, and not a place that you go to take.”
— Anthony Robbins

“We often refuse to accept an idea merely because the tone of voice in which it has been expressed is unsympathetic to us.”
— Friedrich Nietzsche

“Keep away from those who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you believe that you too can become great.”
— Mark Twain

happy family

“You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between you, but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you.”
— Frederick Buechner

“True friendship comes when the silence between two people is comfortable.”
— David Tyson Gentry

“If men would consider not so much wherein they differ, as wherein they agree, there would be far less of uncharitableness and angry feeling in the world.”
— Joseph Addison

“Life is partly what we make it, and partly what it is made by the friends we choose.”
— Tennessee Williams

“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.”
— Carl Jung

“When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion.”
— Dale Carnegie

“Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind, and the third is to be kind.”
— Henry James

 

mechanic apprentice

 

“Never idealize others. They will never live up to your expectations. Don’t over-analyze your relationships. Stop playing games. A growing relationship can only be nurtured by genuineness. “
– Leo F. Buscaglia

“There’s one sad truth in life I’ve found
While journeying east and west –
The only folks we really wound
Are those we love the best.
We flatter those we scarcely know,
We please the fleeting guest,
And deal full many a thoughtless blow
To those who love us best.”
– Ella Wheeler Wilcox

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.”
– Donna Roberts

woman-phone-booth-italy

Call someone you love…to say “I’m sorry.”

“It was only a sunny smile, and little it cost in the giving, but like morning light it scattered the night and made the day worth living.”
– F. Scott Fitzgerald

“If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you.”
– Winnie the Pooh

winni the pooh

 

Thanks again to our readers. Be Blessed!   Nancy at Boyer Writes

 


Remembering Pearl Harbor

This Christmas we will be having a guest who works here in Florida as a Safety Engineer at Universal Studios.   She is Japanese and a friend and business acquaintance of our son. We are happy that she will be a part of our Christian celebration of the birth of Jesus.  Who would have believed that Japan, after being such an enemy with the attack on our troops and ships at Pearl Harbor would rebuild and become a world power with our help?   Who would believe that the next generations would be our friends?

Several years ago, I was invited to Japan as an American educator from Florida by the Japanese government.  The first meeting that the Americans had with a Japanese diplomat surprisingly was a speech of apology for the war.  We were given a warm welcome to stay in the country, visit schools and have home stays with a Japanese family.   It was the country’s way of thanking Americans, after so many years, for helping rebuild the country after World War II.   It was a wonderful experience to be emersed in the Japanese culture.  Nancy and Bill with Japanese Counselate General in Miami

Today is December 7th when we remember Pearl Harbor and the price that was paid by so many in this attack…resulting in the thousands who died in battles with the Japanese and Germans. Many ended up in prison camps after the United States Congress voted to enter the war.   The dropping of the atomic bombs on Japan ended the war, but the horrors were profound.

The rebuilding process began and today Japan is a wonderful place to visit.  My husband and I went to Mt. Fuji during autumn and enjoyed the beautiful Japanese maples.  We hope to visit Washington, D.C. when the Japanese cherry blossoms are in bloom.Japanese Maple favorite for nancy and bill While we were in Japan, we went to the Memorial of the USS Arizona.  To know that the sailors who perished there are still entombed in their sunken ship was an emotional experience.

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The names of those on the USS Arizona are read by Bill Johnson at the Memorial at Pearl Harbor

 

Recently I found a video that was interesting as it gave some of the details of the attack on Pearl Harbor of which some may not be aware.

Video  (Turn up sound)


President George H.W. Bush

George H.W. Bush as a member of the U.S. Navy during World War II

George H.W. Bush as a member of the U.S. Navy during World War II.

 

george-h-w-bush2

You were a kind and gracious gentleman…a patriot…and our President.

In Honor of President George H.W. Bush 

From Retired Navy Chaplain, William J. Boyer, and his wife, Nancy of Boyer Writes

Slide Presentation: 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

The Christian service of President Bush at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.   (Turn up sound)

 


In Honor of All Veterans

American flag held high

HONORING THOSE WHO SERVE

Bill welcomes vetsbest

Retired Chaplain William Boyer greets Veterans

wreaths and Military Science studentsbest

Our future veterans show respect and honor

 

This post is in honor of all veterans and their families who have given so much for the country they love, the United States of American.  God Bless You!

Funeral of John McCain, Washington DC, USA - 01 Sep 2018

A Military Honor Guard carries the casket of late Senator John McCain, a  prisoner of war, after a funeral service at the National Cathedral in Washington, DC.   01 Sep 2018  Photo by REX/Shutterstock (9843284ac)

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VIDEO:   Passengers on an airline witness the bringing home one of our bravest and finest.  Thank you to all USA Veterans, for your service.

IN HONOR OF Green Beret WO1 Shawn Thomas


A House of Cards…Worldwide Intelligence

During World War II, the underground movement in various countries was an integral part of winning the war.  Many people lost their lives passing on information to the Allies.  How would their overt operations been different if they had the technology of today?   Those who now lay their lives on the line to fight for what they think is right may very well be playing roulette with a system in which they have no control…the world wide web.

Recently on my research into various topics, I ran into a fascinating article written by Zach Dorfman and Jenna McLaughlin, with a beginning title that caught my eye… “The CIA’s Communications Suffered a Catastrophic Compromise…”

Yes, it was a long…very long article…but I waded through it, finding out some horrific things that happened in recent years.

“From around 2009 to 2013, the U.S. intelligence community experienced crippling intelligence failures related to the secret internet-based communications system, a key means for remote messaging between CIA officers and their sources on the ground worldwide. The previously unreported global problem originated in Iran and spiderwebbed to other countries, and was left unrepaireddespite warnings about what was happening — until more than two dozen sources died in China in 2011 and 2012 as a result, according to 11 former intelligence and national security officials…”

infomant source

photo credit Osie Greenway

We have read about “sources” that we have depended upon for information on the ground where we are fighting terrorism, but most people do not think of the fact that these very “human sources” are now lingering in prison or were executed because of their help in the fight.  In some cases, because we have not tried to have them released and brought here for protection, they are a throw-away.   How very sad…and yet we still rely upon these men (and women) to risk their lives.  Sometimes, the article I just referred to, stated they are promised help that never was acted upon.

Some informants, who work with our military, simply take the danger because of the love of their family and country.   One man (Agent 40) who helped fight ISIS realized the danger but continued regardless. The informant is on the ground and knows firsthand what is happening.

” Coalition spokesman Col. John Dorrian confirmed the international alliance receives its target lists from civilian informants, among other sources…  Islamic State fighters in  Iraq conducted a surprise inspection of Agent 40’s house and found his wife using a forbidden phone. They waited for him to return and then promptly arrested him, beat him, and shoved him in a cell with seven other men. After they went through the phone and saw the videos he took, they sentenced him to execution. As he sat there waiting to die, the building quaked, and one of the walls exploded into pieces from an airstrike on an adjacent building. Through the smoke, Agent 40 saw four Islamic State bodies sprawled on the ground. He and six fellow prisoners made their escape through the hole caused by the airstrike — he believes the eighth prisoner was killed…The informant fled Mosul to Qayyarah, and then to Shirqat, where he was eventually reunited with his family. To this day, he doesn’t know whether the airstrike was accidental or a deliberate attempt to free him. Still, Agent 40 was happy that the most absurd parts of the experience were over. He said he had found it ever more difficult to keep a straight face while attending mosque on Fridays, which the Islamic State mandated. When the militants called on God to defeat their enemies, Agent 40 made a different prayer. They told us to pray, ‘Please, God, destroy the Americans and the Peshmerga,’ he said. ‘I prayed: ‘Please, my God, don’t listen to them.’   (taken from FP News Igor Kossov)

Civilians walk on a street in al-Dawwasah district, in soutwest Mosul.

Airstrike in Mosul credit Time

 

Dorfman and McLaughlin continue about crippling intelligence failures :

“You establish these networks that are obviously critical to our ability to really understand what our adversaries are up to — there’s a pride in that — and when something that valuable starts to fall apart, the concern is, ‘Are we developing a house of cards?’” said one former senior official. “A lot of bells went off” during this time, said this person, because “whatever methods and procedures we were using were in jeopardy because of what the Chinese and Iranians had determined. You find that you’re blind.”

One of the people mentioned in the article was John Reidy:

“In 2008 — well before the Iranians had arrested any agents — a defense contractor named John Reidy, whose job it was to identify, contact and manage human sources for the CIA in Iran, had already sounded an alarm about a “massive intelligence failure” having to do with “communications” with sources… The “U.S. communications infrastructure was under siege,” he wrote. Reidy warned that the problem wasn’t limited to a single country — it extended to everywhere the CIA operates. Close to 70 percent of operations at the time were potentially compromised, he noted. In other words, an entire class of CIA agents — those using some iteration of the online system — was in danger. “CIA is aware of this,” he wrote. “The design and maintenance of the system is flawed.”… Reidy’s complaint wasn’t fully addressed for many years. But when the wide-scale arrest of sources in Iran happened, the CIA eventually launched an investigation. The deaths in China sent investigators into overdrive. Teams from the CIA, the FBI and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence scrambled to try to figure out what had happened — and how to stem the damage.”

For much more information, I highly recommend that you take some time to read all of this article.  Whistleblowers who are not taken seriously will leave huge gaps in our intelligence. Each day or hour that ticks by will be an invitation for discovery and death for our agents and sources throughout the world.   The internet has become the new technology from which to wage war…although it is done silently.  One thing leads to another with global speed while the House of Cards is built higher.

CLICK HERE TO READ FULL ARTICLE 


History: Identity Control…Have We Learned?

Tomorrow is the beginning of “Early Voting” in my state, USA.  Many people think it is important who is in government control (local or national) and others could care less.  We better care if we have learned anything from history.

I write about this not to promote one candidate or another, but reflect on what history may teach us on government and control… if we pay attention.  The problem is that we rarely connect past history with the potential present or future history and what it may look like.  Therefore, we will take a look at past history and hope that our skin does not crawl…but it will.

Did you know that one of the most famous names in our USA Supreme Court was responsible for the cutting off many individual rights during the early 20th century?  Here’s his picture…Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Oliver_Wendell_Holmes_Jr_circa_1930 Supreme Crt Judge

Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in 1930, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. was appointed by President Theodore Roosevelt.

Why was this esteemed man important?  He had a great deal to do with the philosophy of Eugenics.  Here is what he said on the matter of a court case from Virginia entitled Buck v Bell in which he voted  Yes to enforce the following:

Buck v. Bell

(from Wikipedia) “In 1927, Holmes wrote the 8–1 majority opinion in Buck v. Bell case that upheld the Virginia Sterilization Act of 1924 and the forced sterilization of Carrie Buck who was claimed to be mentally defective. Although later scholarship has shown the suit was collusive and Carrie Buck was probably of normal intelligence. The record before the Supreme Court showed only that she had received a proper hearing in which she was represented by a competent guardian, and was able to press her suit in the federal courts. She apparently had received the procedures required by due process of law in ample measure. The argument made on her behalf was principally that the statute requiring sterilization of institutionalized persons was unconstitutional, itself a violation of what today is called “substantive due process”. Holmes repeated familiar arguments that statutes would not be struck down if they appeared on their face to have a reasonable basis. In support of his argument that the interest of “public welfare” outweighs the interest of individuals in their bodily integrity, he argued:

(Quote by Judge Holmes) “We have seen more than once that the public welfare may call upon the best citizens for their lives. It would be strange if it could not call upon those who already sap the strength of the State for these lesser sacrifices, often not felt to be such by those concerned, to prevent our being swamped with incompetence. It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime, or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind. The principle that sustains compulsory vaccination is broad enough to cover cutting the Fallopian tubes … Three generations of imbeciles are enough.”

Although the opinion and eugenics remain controversial, the decision in the case still stands. Sterilization rates under eugenics laws in the United States climbed from 1927 until Skinner v. Oklahoma, 316 U.S. 535 (1942). While Skinner v. Oklahoma did not specifically overturn Buck v. Bell, it created enough of a legal quandary to discourage many sterilizations…”

“A historical marker was erected on May 2, 2002 in Charlottesville, Virginia where Carrie Buck was born.  Virginia Governor Mark R. Warner offered the “Commonwealth’s sincere apology for Virginia’s participation in eugenics,” noting that “the eugenics movement was a shameful effort in which state government never should have been involved.”  (Paul A Lombardo U of V School of Medicine)

We are hearing words that will make the hair stand on the back of the neck:  FORCED STERILIZATION… THE INCOMPETENT or the first use of the word “Moron” (feeble-minded or perhaps mentally ill)

This was what Eugenics was all about…getting rid of the undesirables.  It came in the form of our first emigration policies and restrictions, the mental institutions where many ended up whether they were actually insane or not. It also had to do with racism.   Even the histories of citizens were stored in locked vaults by the government.  These could explain inherited traits and pinpoint those who would be considered “unacceptable”.

Perhaps we should think twice before we give over to any organization our DNA to do with as they like.  Any authority may decide to act upon this greatest of our identity. Genetics Take for instance the controversy of  23andMe, a DNA test group.  

” …23andMe’s Personal Genome Service is much more than a medical device; it is a one-way portal into a world where corporations have access to the innermost contents of your cells and where insurers and pharmaceutical firms and marketers might know more about your body than you know yourself. And as 23andMe warns on its website, “Genetic Information that you share with others could be used against your interests. You should be careful about sharing your Genetic Information with others.”  (Charles Siefe in Scientific America)

One may ask, what about the good parts of having DNA used by the police investigators to find killers or rapists who may have been Cold Cases for years?  Of course, this technology today can be celebrated for bringing the guilty to justice as we heard about recently on 60 Minutes.  However, we must not forget that there are few standards set in the use of DNA and someone who is calling themselves DNA professionals could also make mistakes or prove to be using the knowledge for less than good to an individual…criminal or not. Could these same people be brought in to court as a witness with authority?   Caution may be the best word. How important is your lineage to you?

Under President Wilson, the belief in Eugenics for the nation flourished.  Some of the terms used are everyday words to us today because of the government efforts in years past to make lawful things that we might question today.  The public can be coerced and made from advertisements to think that the government knows best.  That is precisely why we should look at the people we put into office very, very carefully.  Is individual liberty a priority to a candidate…or does he or she thinks that government knows best and can be the solver of all problems?  When would they think, you, the citizen is the problem…for whatever reason.

Shown here is President Wilson, a eugenics sign, and a family that was found to have good lineage…having won a contest as “the best”.

We could go on with many eugenics topics in history: immigration restrictions, unfit individuals, compulsory sterilization, euthanasia programs, fit baby contests and family fitness under eugenics, planned parenthood promotions and how we as a nation promoted racial superiority as did Germany during WWII.

What a nation can do in plain sight can be terrifying if we are looking away or turn a blind eye.  (More information on Eugenics)

Yes, it matters who is in power in your local, state, or national setting. Do your homework. Your human rights are at stake…as in past years and in the future.   See how they have voted in the past that effects your life and more importantly your freedoms.

 Click link:  A video worth watching

“The Eugenics Crusade”   The American Experience  PBS

 


EVIL….We Must Not Forget

COM 2015 ANNIVERSARY

New York City remembers those lost in the 9-11 terrorist attacks

September 11, 2001 is a date that we must NEVER forget.   The world has known evil during World War II and the Holocaust and many other times when the innocent have been destroyed.   The attack on the World Trade Centers in New York City is also one of those times.

These are the devastating facts:

  • A total of 2,977 people were killed in New York City, Washington, DC and outside of Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
  • At the World Trade Center (WTC) site in Lower Manhattan, 2,753 people were killed when hijacked American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175 were intentionally crashed into the north and south towers, or as a result of the crashes.
  • Of those who perished during the initial attacks and the subsequent collapses of the towers, 343 were New York City firefighters, 23 were New York City police officers and 37 were officers at the Port Authority.
  • The victims ranged in age from two to 85 years. Approximately 75-80% of the victims were men.
  • At the Pentagon in Washington, 184 people were killed when hijacked American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the building.
  • Near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, 40 passengers and crew members aboard United Airlines Flight 93 died when the plane crashed into a field. It is believed that the hijackers crashed the plane in that location, rather than their unknown target after the passengers and crew attempted to retake control of the flight deck.
  • Because of illness since the attack, a number of the rescue and first responders have also died.   Others, including the canine helpers, lived on but with some continued illness.

9-11 firefighters

Brooklyn Memorial to the First Responders

9-11 Bretagne and Denise Corliss

Bretagne, the last known 9/11 rescue dog, is pictured with owner Denise Corliss

A Personal Note:  The men who flew the planes into the towers probably walked or biked by our house many times as they trained at a small airport in Venice, Florida.   A young pilot attending our church was in charge of training one of the men.  He could not understand why the student did not want to pay attention when he tried to teach the landing techniques of flying.  Finally, having enough of the attitude, he asked to be released from his duties as an instructor.   The student was given to someone else.  Later, the terrorists who had learned the basics in small aircraft went on to south Florida to learn more about flying large, commercial planes.   Had our U.S. government officials been sharing information on persons of interest with the local police force, these men who trained here to do their horrible deed would have been caught.  How tragic.

Just before 9-11, my husband and I went to New York to celebrate our anniversary. We took in a baseball game at Yankee Stadium. Sitting near us was a group of young firefighters, having a great time.  Little did they know that evil was going to take some of their lives within days.

We rode the bullet elevator to the top of the twin tower to get a spectacular view of the city.  It was a beautiful day and at around 9:00 am.   We were the only ones up on the top except for a woman who offered to take our pictures.  It was only from June until September that we could only imagine that there was probably another tourist standing where we stood to also enjoy the view….when the plane came in for the crash.  How tragic and how evil.

There were a number of planes up in the air at the same time on 9-11. Two went into the towers and one into the Pentagon.  Little did the terrorists flying over Pensylvania know that they had strong, American men on their airplane who loved American freedom and their lives. They were going to do anything to stop their plane from going into any other buildings where innocent people were living their everyday lives.     We’ll never forget the bravery when the words “Let’s Roll” were shouted and the plane was brought down in Pennsylvania instead of their planned destination.   Their bravery is beyond what we can say here.  To the families of all those who lost loved ones that terrible day, we promise that they will never be forgotten…not this year or any year to come.

9-11 shanksville Pennsylvania Jeff Swensen

9-11 Memorial at Shanksville, Pennsylvania

9-11 national memorial. at the Pentagonjpg

Evening 9-11 Memorial at the Pentagon in Arlington, VA

In 2017, my husband and I went back to New York City to once again walk around the memorial and read the thousands of names etched in marble.  With the sound of the water and flowers laid next to names with a birthday that day, it is beautiful. We also went to St. Paul’s Chapel which is situated next to where the twin towers stood.  Amazingly, with all the buildings falling and debris everywhere, it was not destroyed.  Even the steeple on the church remained.  St. Paul’s Chapel took care of the first responders through their long hours of working in the rubble.

9-11 St Paul's Chapel near One World Trade Center

St. Paul’s Chapel with the new One World tower behind

 

9-11 St Paul's chapel sign

The victims of 9-11 WILL NOT BE FORGOTTEN.    We would urge all Americans and anyone making a trip to the USA to make this holy place a definite destination.

9-11 photos of victims9-11 national memorial.4jpg9-11 Never Forget

Men and women from many countries, nationalities and religious faiths were working in the buildings destroyed or riding on the planes on 9-11.  With that in mind, it was also an attack on the people of the world.   Those who might be tempted to turn a blind eye to what are the goals of terrorists should take a look at the video here as a reminder.

Video 1st video only from 60 minutes Over-time…”rare footage from Ground 0″   (turn on sound and give it a second or two to load)  1st video only   Click link below:

https://www.cbsnews.com/video/rare-video-from-ground-zero-on-911/


VIETNAM WAR…Brutal and Rejected

This is the third and last in my series on the American veterans who fought and died. Today we think about the men and women who served in Vietnam.  The bravery, discouragement, and aftermath of the war is related in some of the stories in my new book shown at right.

Some facts about the Americans who were sent to this war:

  • The Vietnam War was a long, costly armed conflict that pitted the communist regime of North Vietnam and its southern allies, known as the Viet Cong, against South Vietnam and its principal ally, the United States.  The purpose was to stop communist aggression.  It started on or about November 1, 1955 and lasted until April 30, 1975, which is roughly 20 years.
  • This divisive war, increasingly unpopular at home, ended with the withdrawal of U.S. forces in 1973 and the unification of Vietnam under Communist control two years later.
  • More than 3 million people, including 58,000 Americans, were killed in the war. (credit History.com)

soldiers-pray-with-army-chaplain-P

Army chaplain prays with the troops

Many Vietnam vets are still living on our American streets today suffering from the mental anguish of the war.   Others have lingering diseases from agent-orange that was used in battles.

spraying-agent-orange-P

The spraying of agent-orange to defoliate the jungle vegetation where the enemy hid.

Some Americans left for Canada to escape going to Vietnam and they too must live with that decision. The rejection many felt as they finally returned home to the U.S. after the war was a cause of great discouragement.   Others fought with honor, whether in the medical corp or flying the helicopters to rescue the injured. The ground troops crawled into holes to find the Viet Cong and often carried their fellow soldiers and marines through the hot jungles.  It was a brutal and long 20 years.

The Day Saigon fell to the Communists:  There was the final day when the last American helicopter left Vietnam.  My doctor was fortunate enough to leave as a child, but the desperation of those Vietnamese left behind was a terrible thing.

“The North Vietnamese Communists closed in on the South Vietnamese city of Saigon. The U.S. desperately evacuated the last remaining Americans on April 29, 1975. But the city fell to the North Vietnamese on this Day, 41 years ago, April 30, 1975…The people were to wait for the code signal, which was the playing of the song “White Christmas.” On the morning of April 29, the strains of the Bing Crosby classic signaled that those leaving had to get to designated landing zones…President Ford ordered an immediate evacuation of American civilians and Vietnamese refugees as the NVA closed in. US Marines and Air Force conducted an airlift of more than 1,000 Americans and over 7,000 refugees over an 18 hour period. They called it Operation Frequent Wind…Thousands upon thousands of South Vietnamese people tried to get on the helicopters as they left. Many had to be pushed down in order to take off. Fear and panic had gripped the people, who knew full well what would happen as the Communist NVA took over the country. Tens of thousands of Vietnamese people stormed the gates of the US Embassy, desperately crying out for help…Vietnamese veterans, many of whom have terrifying memories of the war, remember another airlift called Operation Babylift.”  (The first plane crashed. Out of the more than 300 people on board, the death toll included 78 children and about 50 adults, including Air Force personnel. More than 170 survived…..Read this amazing story from this link: Operation Babylift.  

 

The pictures shown on the video below may be a family member.  A Vietnam veteran may recognize himself.   If so, he will certainly remember his blood, sweat and tears.  Some pictures are not easy to see and the hardship for all is undeniable.   Read carefully the words under each picture as they represent men and women of great valor.

CLICK VIDEO


N.W. BOYER looks forward to a NEW BOOK

Today is a good day!  I am looking forward to a new book to hold in my hands and share with others.  Over a year ago, my husband, a retired Navy Chaplain, and I started interviewing our American veterans in the Blue Ridge mountains for a new book called,  Men and Women of Valor in the Blue Ridge.  This week I sent it to the publishers.  We are excited to share this news with our readers. Stay tuned for a special availability announcement of the book hopefully in the next couple weeks on Amazon.Men and Women of Valor Book Front revised

We think the people whose stories were shared with us will be a real inspiration…and their stories needed to be told.  Some are in their 90’s and are in nursing homes.   We are losing our American World War II veterans and those of our allies at an alarming rate. Hopefully, there will be many books that share their stories.  During the terrible battles to keep freedom alive,  hope often seemed dim as the bombs dropped and men and women died. There were many prayers for miracles.  Our book covers other men and women who served in Korea and Vietnam.  It gives honor to those serving their country in the fight against terrorism in more recent battles.

Below is a video of some beautiful children singing in honor of all World War II veterans as they walk on the very ground where furious battles were fought.

One Voice Children’s Choir, under the direction of Masa Fukuda, performs “When You Believe.” Filmed on-location at Omaha Beach and Brittany American Cemetery and Memorial in Normandy, France. Performed in English, Hebrew and French. This song is dedicated to all the soldiers who fought in World War II, including those who fought at Normandy’s Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword Beaches in the D-Day Invasion; and to the millions of Jewish victims who lost their lives during the Nazi Holocaust.  (video credit)

We add our appreciation and honor for American and Allied veterans in all wars since WWII.

Men and Women of Valor Back FINALrevised

 VIDEO  (Turn on sound)

 

 

 


CORNERSTONE OF LIBERTY… the Magna Carta and our Bill of Rights

picture of magna carta

The Magna Carta is considered the “Cornerstone of Liberty”.  It has influenced most of the civilized world, including the foundation of the Constitution of the United States.

Written in 1215, a few of its words in the Magna Carta are as follows:

No free man shall be seized or imprisoned  No man shall be stripped of his rights or possessions or outlawed or exiled  Nor will we proceed with force against him except by the lawful judgment of his equals or by the law of the land.  To no one will we sell, to no one deny or delay right or justice.

How did the Magna Carta come into existence?

It was drafted by the Archbishop of Canterbury to make peace between the unpopular King John and a group of rebel barons – was designed to ensure the protection of church rights, protection for the barons from illegal imprisonment, access to swift justice, and limitations on feudal payments to the Crown.  On the 19 June 1215 at Runnymede King John signed the Magna Carta. (This means Great Charter.) It was the first formal document stating that a King had to follow the laws of the land and it guaranteed the rights of individuals against the wishes of the King. (from Telegraph)

KING_JOHN signing the Magna Carta

How unpopular was this English King?   Well, according to A. A. Milne’s poem for children, he was most unpopular:   “King John’s Christmas”, begins

‘King John was not a good man. He had his little ways… And sometimes no one spoke to him for days and days and days.

Nevertheless, our own government here in the U.S.A is based upon the Magna Carta.

Where is the original Magna Carta?   The manuscript at Salisbury Cathedral is the best preserved of four surviving original copies of Magna Carta, which were written up shortly after a beleaguered King John met and agreed to terms with 25 rebellious barons.

The Magna Carta influence was shaped by what eighteenth-century Americans believed Magna Carta to signify. Magna Carta was widely held to be:

  • The people’s reassertion of rights against an oppressive ruler
  • A legacy that captured American distrust of concentrated political power
  • In part because of this tradition, most of the state constitutions included declarations of rights intended to guarantee individual citizens a list of protections and immunities from the state government.US. Constitution

The United States also adopted the Bill of Rights, in part, due to these political convictions. Both the state declarations of rights and the United States Bill of Rights incorporated several guarantees that were understood at the time of their ratification to descend from rights protected by Magna Carta. Among these are freedom from:

  • unlawful searches and seizures,
  • a right to a speedy trial,
  • a right to a jury trial in both a criminal and a civil case,
  • and protection from loss of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.

Many broader American constitutional principles have their roots in an eighteenth-century understanding of Magna Carta, such as the theory of representative government, the idea of a supreme law, and judicial review.

Perhaps in their next meeting, President Trump should carry a copy of the Bill of Rights to the North Korean leader.  It would be a GREAT START to the assurance of human rights for that country. Bill of Rights

If you do not live in the United States or you, as an American, are rusty on your knowledge of government and our freedoms, here is a short film that may help you understand why Americans cherish their freedoms….with a little quiz at the end.  See how you do.


Small Towns Remember MEMORIAL DAY

Tucked away in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia are small towns with people who will never forget those brave men and women who left their farms and home places to fight for our country and freedom in the world.  Throughout the rolling countryside and along the blue colored ridges of the mountains… filled with cattle, fields, and beautiful wildflowers, one will find small family graves with an American flag.  This will always indicate that the person buried there served in an American war.

Military Memorial at Galax, Virginia

On this Memorial Day, the young Military Science students and the older men and women of this Blue Ridge area remember the Fallen of all wars and pray prayers for the many POW-MIA’s who are still missing.    (Slide show below)

 

 

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As my husband and I joined in this day of Remembrance,  I’m in the midst of writing a new book about American military veterans, entitled  Men and Women of Valor in the Blue Ridge, which should be on Amazon by July, 2018.

Men and Women of Valor Book Front copy

  My interviews with those who went to serve during World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and more recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been eye-opening.  These are people of great courage and fortitude.  Millions did not return, but for those here in the Blue Ridge, these men forged new lives and continued to make our FREE America an even better place.

One chapter in my book will feature the Childress family in the Blue Ridge who had four men in the military at once during World War II.  Paul (upper right picture and with wife and baby) served in Patton’s Command in France.

 

Francis Childress

The women of the Blue Ridge served as well, including Francis Childress, a cousin to Paul.  Other chapters will take notice of a female military nurse who was awarded the Bronze Star.  The Bronze Star Medal is a decoration awarded to members of the United States Armed Forces for either heroic achievement, valor, heroic service, meritorious achievement, or meritorious service in a combat zone.

As I read memoirs and listened, I learned that fighting on Heart Break Ridge in Korea with legs frozen, slipping out of camp at night in France during World War II to find food for hungry soldiers, spending weeks in the confines of a submarine, fighting off boredom and jungle heat in Vietnam or losing limbs in Afghanistan or Iraq were difficult and in most cases horrible experiences.  It was their part of life that they were willing to share with me and I am grateful because I will never look at a veteran again in the same way.

This is why I write this blog to encourage you to take an hour or so on Memorial Day from your interest in sports events, picnics or other activities to give our military the honor they so deserve.  Your freedom today is what they did to keep us free.  It is important that our children and grandchildren are taught history and the meaning of our national Memorial Day.  I was amazed to see that since the last Memorial Day ceremony of 2017, in the small town of Galax, VA. that 90+ people had died who were veterans in this part of the Blue Ridge.  We are rapidly losing those who fought in World War II and their stories should be told.

 

To those whose lives and deaths were the ultimate sacrifice….there is not enough thanks in heaven or earth to give to you…but we will try.

To the gravely wounded warriors who have come home and forged new lives, we give you honor.   We have contacted this brave warrior for an interview that will shed light on all those who have suffered so much.

On April 7, 2011, J. B. Kerns, a combat engineer, and fellow Marines moved into the notoriously dangerous Ladar Bazaar in Afghanistan to attempt to clear it of improvised explosive devices. A soldier near Kerns stepped on a pressure plate and triggered an IED. (Credit to Roanoke Times full story)

Thank you to all veterans…men and women.  We give tribute to all the wives and families that were left behind to faithfully live and wait for their loved ones to return home.

VIDEO    Turn up sound    (Credit “American Soldier” by Toby Keith)