Tag Archives: Facebook

Pence to revisit religious freedom act

A friend of mine posted this tidbit on Facebook, so I thought I’d share it here.

“So who needs a religious freedom law anyway. Last time I checked, you could go to any church you want. You can even go to one where they wave snakes around if that’s your thing. Or you don’t have to go to any of ’em. You can go to a mosque, a synagogue, a cathedral, a tarpaper shack. Or you can stay home and watch re-runs on MeTV. Ain’t nobody need no law on religious freedom. Oh, but if you’re in business, you don’t have a right to discriminate. Religion stops when you invite the public to your door. Got it?”

His target? It’s the Indiana law called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.


Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has been taking it on the chin since signing the bill into law. He’s now seeking to amend it to ensure that businesses cannot discriminate against someone because of their sexual orientation.

It’s the sexual orientation element that’s gotten so many folks riled up.

The stated intent is to protect people’s religious principles. The effect in the eyes of critics has been that the law now gives business owners license to discriminate against gay individuals or same-sex couples.

Gov. Pence has been on the defensive ever since signing the bill. He’s now seeking to fix the law and I give him credit for recognizing the need to protect his state’s residents from undue — and illegal — discrimination.

I won’t question his motives for seeking to change the law. I do feel the need to point out that Gov. Pence is considering a run for the Republican nomination for president of the United States.


Wow! Ted Cruz praises Michelle Obama!

Times like these call for special attention.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-TEA Party Nation, has actually said something complimentary about the first lady of the United States of America.

Cruz wrote on his Facebook page that Michelle Obama has stood up for the rights of women around the world by declining to wear a scarf covering her head while visiting Saudi Arabia.


You go, Ted!

He wrote: “Kudos to First Lady Michelle Obama for standing up for women worldwide and refusing to wear a Sharia-mandated head-scarf in Saudi Arabia. Nicely done.”

Cruz, who’s actually from Texas (of course) isn’t likely to say nice things — ever — about the first lady or her husband. He’s entertaining a possible — if not probable — run for the presidency in 2016. He’s no doubt storing up plenty of negative things to say about the past eight years of Barack Obama’s presidency.

Just for grins and giggles, though, I am curious to know the reason Michelle Obama didn’t wear the scarf in a country where Islamic tradition plays such a huge role in people’s lives. My own hunch is that the Sharia mandate is for Muslim women and since Michelle Obama is not a Muslim, she and other women in the presidential party were exempt from the rule.

Still, it’s good to hear Sen. Cruz acknowledge the guts it took for the first lady to do such a thing in Saudi Arabia. Imagine what he and other critics on the right would have said had she shown up with her hair covered.



First family's kids off limits … period!

Elizabeth Lauten’s dimwitted Facebook post about Sasha and Malia Obama — and a blog I posted on the subject — brought a fascinating response from a dear friend and former colleague.

My friend Sheila noted that “first children” have been unfair targets for decades. She took note going all the way back to Lyndon and Lady Bird Johnson’s daughters, Lynda Bird and Luci Baines.


Lauten, a staffer for a Republican member of Congress, Stephen Fincher of Tennessee, jabbed at the Obama girls because in her mind they didn’t give the ceremonial pardoning of the Thanksgiving turkeys the respect the event deserved — and you can make that determination for yourself, I reckon.

Anyhow, Lauten’s ridiculous social media post drew fire from all quarters and she apologized.

But my friend’s remark brings to mind another interesting point.

Of all the presidential kids she cited, she mentioned only one male: Ron Reagan. The rest of them are all females.

Why is that?

The twin daughters of George and Laura Bush got battered over some nightclubbing incident; Chelsea Clinton was the on the receiving end of unflattering comments for many years during her dad’s two terms as president; Ronald Reagan’s youngest child, daughter Patti, was criticized because of her near-estrangement — for political reasons — from her parents; Amy Carter received the same kind of unfair media treatment that befell Chelsea Clinton; Tricia and Julie Nixon were scrutinized constantly by the media during their time in the White House.

Who’s missing from this lineup? The children of Gerald and Betty Ford and those of George and Barbara Bush. Except for Susan Ford, the rest of the family all had left the nest; as for the equally sizable Bush brood, they all were grown and gone.

The media and others in public life often don’t distinguish themselves under certain circumstances. The manner in which they treat the children of presidents and their spouses is one of those instances in which everyone ought to take a hard look inward.

Maybe they can ask: Is this how they would want their daughters to be treated?

Facebook is a blast, but I prefer some decorum

I just posted this item on my Facebook timeline.

“Alert: I just ‘unfriended’ someone from my Facebook ‘friends’ list because of his liberal use of profanity. I am prone to speak with pithy tongue on occasion myself, but I do not like using it — or seeing it — on my timeline. Be forewarned. I’ll be on the lookout for gratuitous and patently nasty verbiage. A little here and there is OK, but watch it, folks.”

Now I shall explain in a bit of detail.

The “friend” I whacked from my list really isn’t a friend. I don’t know the individual. He sent a Facebook “friend request” a few months ago and I accepted. It turns out we’re of like minds politically, so I guess he read my blog posts that feed automatically to my Facebook news feed.

But this individual has a tart tongue — so to speak — when he lays his hands on a keyboard. He would lace his commentary with f-bombs, s-bombs and sexually explicit language.

I cut him off.

I enjoy using Facebook as a social medium for a couple of reasons. I use it as a platform to share my blog posts, along with several other social media sites. I also keep up with those with whom I have signed on as friends. Some of them are the real deal, actual friends I’ve known for years; the guy I’ve known the longest goes back to the seventh grade — that would be 1962. Others are acquaintances or folks I’ve known professionally over more than three decades in print journalism. And still others are individuals I do not know, but who have “mutual friends” on Facebook; when they request a spot on my “friends” roster, I’m likely to sign them up. And, of course, some family members belong to my list of friends.

A handful of my Facebook friends are young people, as in minors. They don’t need to read filth on my Facebook timeline. I have others on my friends roster who — I believe — might take offense at the foul language. So I try to honor their values as well.

Don’t misunderstand. I am not a saint. I pepper my own spoken words with some pithiness on occasion. I do so in the presence of people I know and who might be prone to the same verbal proclivity.

I just prefer at least a touch of decorum on these Facebook posts, if for no other reason than to offer some relief from the coarseness that has become the norm.



Social media produce a blessing

Various forms of social media often get a royal raspberry from those who dislike it.

I’ll admit to being a little late in the social media game, but I’ve found over the past 20 or so hours that it has at least one immense benefit. Social media allow friends and acquaintances to offer instant — and often heartfelt — expressions of sorrow on one’s behalf.

Last night I announced to my network of Facebook friends — who comprise actual friends, others I know only casually and even some folks I’ve never even met — the death of a beloved pet. Socks was our 12-year-old kitty who simply laid down and never woke up.

It’s been a very difficult past few hours for my wife and me. Pet owners understand all too well that these critters we bring into our homes become part of the family. In the case of Socks and his sister, Mittens, they became kin immediately after walking through the door more than a dozen years ago.

It’s gratifying to read the lovely statements of those who’ve had pets, and from those who’ve suffered a loss similar to what we’ve just experienced.

I can thank social media for that. To be honest, it’s difficult to talk about this just yet. So I won’t go on and on.

The purpose of this post actually is just to recognize that social media, if used in the right way, can provide a clear path to emotional healing.


Blogging is a blast … most of the time

Readers of this blog know — I hope — that I take great joy in expressing opinions on this or that subject.

I consider it a form of recreation, perhaps even therapy. I like sharing it on various social media. I post the blog entries to my Twitter feed, which goes automatically to my Facebook feed. They also post automatically to LinkedIn and Tumblr.

Sometimes, though, the Facebook feed results in some, shall we say, unfortunate reactions among a few of the hundreds of friends and “friends” who read this stuff on that social medium.

Some of my friends/”friends” react to the blog post. Their reaction draws a critical response from someone else on the feed. Then the initial responder respond to the response. Back and forth it goes. Then others enter the fray. Then it becomes a game of insults, a put-down contest, if you please.

Some of it is good-natured. Some of it isn’t. Then it gets out of hand.

I commented earlier today on Texas executing a young woman for the murder of a little boy. I stated my opposition capital punishment. Then the fusillade started among a few folks who had read the blog.

It got a bit crazy.

Sometimes I’m a bit slow on the uptake and sometimes I don’t recognize good humor when it’s hidden behind insults. Perhaps my friends — and these individuals are people I know well — were just kidding among themselves. They really didn’t mean to say all those nasty things to each other, or at least outsiders looking in — such as yours truly — shouldn’t interpret them as mean-spiritedness.

Forgive me, guys. I don’t get it.

I’ll keep spewing this stuff. Others can comment. They’re free to insult each other as long as they don’t use the magic word, which in baseball rhubarb parlance is “you.” By that I don’t want them saying, “You bleeping so-and-so!”

Let’s keep it clean.