Showing posts from January, 2013

Super Bowl's Soft Porn

As you sit down to watch the big game with your family—do you wonder what those commercials are doing to your kid’s brain?
Super Bowl commercials often get more notoriety than the game itself.Granted, some commercials are hilarious and worthy of their appeal. But many are sixty-seconds of sexist garbage leading to women’s self-image woes while giving young guys the impression that sex rules.
Commercials with shock-value have gradually desensitized viewers. Yet, few women have the total self-confidence to not be affected by the brazen show of all that silicon-enhanced skin. Women wonder if their men are attracted to it and then look in a mirror to see how they compare.
It isn’t possible to measure up ladies. This is a soft porn contest without a winner—unless you count the winners from the lucrative Madison Avenue advertisement agencies. Sex sells and women pay for it.The only recourse half the population has is to refuse to support those offensive advertisers: Turn off the garbage TV…

Driving by Deadly Reminders

I was just a couple weeks past my sixteenth birthday and taking a final “drive” with my driving instructor when I came around a bend and met a log truck head-on. He was in a no-pass zone attempting to get around a slow-moving car. It was one of those split-second moves that ended well. My instructor had a new story to tell and I had my first close encounter behind the wheel.
Living in the land of log trucks, my two teens repeatedly heard my drive safe mantra. And I supplemented it with continual prayers for their protection. Getting to school each day meant a two-lane road with variations of rain, fog, snow, black ice, deer, and deadly curves.
Travelers on Highway 112 pass by former accident scenes memorialized with small white crosses and adorned with colorful plastic flowers. Glancing at those sad landmarks reminds me that some stories ended too soon while loved ones had to find a way to continue on—but with lives that were forever changed.

Each year another batch of teens are ha…

The High Cost of Cheap Sex

While life isn’t easy, sometimes our choices make it a whole lot harder.
As a pregnancy resource center volunteer I’d visit schools and talk to teens about their choices. I told them the choice to work hard in school would cost them some time now, but it’d pay off with better opportunities later. I also told them that their sexual choices would come with a cost too. A student I met many years ago recently sent me a long note. She gave me permission to share her thoughts:
My friends and I talked about you after you came to our class. It wasn’t as if you were telling us anything we didn’t already know about sex. The scary things about STDs didn’t really make a difference either. I’d been having sex since the year before and I didn’t really care about the future.
You made it seem like getting through school was easy compared to getting a job and living on our own. You said we should get married before we had sex because we’d be older and ready for it. No one I know is getting married and…

Arm Yourself

I’ve done what most everyone else in America has done—watched the TV accounts and read the grim details of the recent mass murders while wondering about our future. Our post-9/11 nation has become far more wary. But do we really think government can protect us from evil?
As a Portland, Oregon police officer, my grandpa dealt with plenty of inner city crime. After being struck down by a car, instead of going on disability, Grandpa went back to school. He studied forensics, crime analysis, and took intensive courses on sociopathic behavior. Before long he became the chief detective and handled Oregon murder investigations. His job was to find the bad guys and get enough evidence to jail them for good.

As a pioneer in fingerprint analysis, he was asked by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover to do some “behind the scenes” work in post-war Germany. That was when my grandpa really began to see how evil worked. He was fairly tight-lipped over what he had learned about Hitler, Stalin and the communi…

The Fence

It’s interesting how I remember the punishment but not the crime.When I look at a certain section of our fence there’s a snapshot in my mind of my daughter holding a paintbrush while kneeling down carefully applying stain to the boards. There had been some family infraction and our fence was serving as justice.

The fence is much older now.In fact, no stain has been applied since that punishment long ago. My daughter could probably fill in the gaps that my mind has chosen to file away.But I vividly recall walking out to the garden and quietly watching her paint. 
I wondered what was inside her heart and mind as she worked silently by herself.

I grabbed a brush and painted beside her for awhile. Somehow looking at the fence and having something to do with our hands allowed us to talk about life unlike we could do across a table from one another.
I also noticed my hearing was better when I painted. Why couldn’t I hear her words when I looked into her eyes? I knew why. When I sat across …