You begin saving the world by saving one person at a time; all else is grandiose romanticism or politics. — Charles Bukowski

Imagine approaching Earth from space. Far enough away, we cannot see the Earth. There is no trace of man. Mankind does not matter. There is only me, lonely me. Only “I” matters.

Eventually, the Earth appears, a small, glittering jewel.

Closer, at orbital heights above our home, we can see traces of man. We can spot the Great Wall of China. We can detect plumes of pollution streaming into the air and the water.

Closer still, cruising above the land, we can observe groups of people, people separated by color, nationality, religion, disability, sexual orientation, job, wealth, sports team, and so many other things.

Some enjoy the heights. They revel in distantly observing and manipulating ant-like souls. Most join one of the groups. We want to be with people like us. The more the people around us are like us the more we feel they affirm us.

What we see depends upon where we choose to stand. If we stand close enough, we can see an individual. We can converse with someone. We can know their joys and sorrows. We can examine their virtues and their blemishes. Only up close can we know our neighbor.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. — Martin Luther King, Jr. (quote from here)

Only up close can we see, hear, and touch our neighbor. Only up close can we appreciate a unique person, a person like our self. Far away we see differences that don’t much matter. Far enough away we see no one. Then we cannot know our brothers and sisters, people like us, people made in the image of our Creator.


In my first post in this series, PART 1, I focused on the politics. Because I am into politics, that’s was my immediate response to Ortberg’s book, Who Is This Man? Ortberg’s book, however, is not about modern politics. Ortberg’s book is about how Jesus changes people. Thus, Chapter 2 is about how Jesus changed the way we see each other, all made in the image of God.

To illustrate just how readily the people accepted the megalomania of their king, Ortberg uses the brutal reign of King Herod The Great. In contrast, Ortberg tells us how the ancients once disposed of unwanted children. They aborted unwanted newborns, often by leaving them to die on dung hills. Because Christians opposed infanticide, that practice slowly died. Eventually, Christians established orphanages to care for unwanted children.

God Cares About All Of Us?

In Chapter 3, Ortberg expands upon that simple, but jaw-dropping belief: we are all made in the image of God. Everyone has the potential to be our brother or sister in Christ. Here Ortberg provides some insightful bible exposition and recalls. From the Bible we learn that Jesus told us that God cares deeply for each of us.  Jesus called for us to be humble, to love each other, not to lord over each other.  From history we learn how early Christians applied Jesus’ teachings. In a world where it is every man for himself, Christian stood out. Christians stood out because they loved each other, and they even cared for strangers.

Christian slowly learned to despise and to oppose and an age-old institution, slavery. Now we have to imagine a world where slavery is normal. Of course, nobody wants to be a slave, but there was a time when nobody saw anything wrong with owning slaves. Jesus changed that. Because He taught us the values of love and humility, He taught us to see each other as one of God’s children. Who enslaves a brother or sister? Who enslaves someone they love?

When Women Became People Too

"Country Gentleman" magazine cover, November 1922. The 19th Amendment giving all women the right to vote wasn't ratified until August 1920. (from here)
“Country Gentleman” magazine cover, November 1922. The 19th Amendment giving all women the right to vote wasn’t ratified until August 1920. (from here)

Chapter 4 reminds us there is nothing new under the sun.  Today, because of its government’s one child policy, China suffers a shortage of women. The Roman Empire had a similar problem.

In the ancient Greco-Roman world, there was a huge shortage of women — about 140 men for every 100 women.  What happened to the other women?

The were left to die when they got born the wrong sex. (from Chapter 4, page 47).

What does the Bible say about women, particularly the New Testament? It shows that Jesus cared about women. Like men, God made women in His image too.

Counter to the conventions of His day, Jesus taught women and accepted their help in His ministry. When He died on that cross, the women He taught showed the most courage by staying with Him. In the quest to spread the Gospel, women too died as martyrs.

It took hundreds of years, but eventually Christians observed something in the Bible at odds with their experience in the world. The Bible says men and women stand equal before God. The world says men and women are not equal. So determined followers of Jesus Christ set about changing the world to conform to the Word of God.


confusedWell, here is the last post in this series on quotes out of context.  I would like to say I entirely understand the response I got, but I don’t. The best I can do is make some observations.

Most of the opposition’s comments in this series landed on the first post in the series. Why? Well, here are my guesses.

  • The post was a straightforward defense of Donald Trump.  There was no mention of H. Clinton. So H. Clinton’s supporters could attack Trump’s supposed narcissism without much fear they would have to defend H. Clinton.
  • The topic is fuzzy. Everyone knows Trump supporters would not stand by him if he started shooting people in the street, but it sounds awful to gun control freaks. Apparently, since sensitive souls can’t take such talk we must condemn it. Still, I wonder how such sensitive souls survive all the violence in the mass media.

Anyway, I would like to thank the commenters.

silenceofmind took the time to remind us that the news media’s bias has become dangerous to our republic.  He also pointed out that “one of THE Donald’s attributes that is so attractive is that he is completely unsullied by political correctness”.

novaDemocrat (AKA novascout) fomented confusion.  He described Trump’s utterance as useless braggadocio, even going so far as to say that people understood what Trump meant when they first heard the remark out of context. Shrug! He is entitled to his opinion.

Stephen thought Trump’s hyperbole imprudent.

But Prudence would dictate that you should not make such violent, hyperbolic statements to begin with.

Here is a list of examples of hyperbole. Here is an explanation of hyperbole as a literary device. People use hyperbole because exaggeration sometimes serves a purpose. If we let the news media deliberately misrepresent what people say to us, at some point we must blame ourselves for wilful ignorance.

Tony only made one comment (here), but it was a doozy. Here we get an elaborate explanation of how we choose our leaders the same way we choose our favorite soda pop and a hateful string of unsupported accusations against Trump. That comment simply disregarded the fact of news media bias.

One last observation, really a question. Has Trump manipulated the news media, or has the news media manipulated Trump? I don’t know.  There is little doubt that Trump’s willingness to express himself frankly and colorfully attracts media attention. However, frank, colorful statements are also easily distorted. So there is a trade-off.

The trade-off worked for Trump in the primaries. Will it work for him in the general election. Arguably, the news media wanted Trump to win the primaries. Given, for example, how a certain ten-year old video was held until October, that is sort of obvious. Nevertheless, Trump had to be aware the media would turn on him after the primaries.  So everything he said would eventually be used against him, and it has been. So how did he plan on dealing with it? Did he have a plan? I don’t know.

What about our plan? As voters, we want the best candidate to lead our country? However, we all have out own opinions about what that best candidate should look like.  That’s is why we have to vote, but voting doesn’t solve the problem of choosing the best candidate. We still have to learn about the candidates, and we still have to give the needs of our country some thought. That requires homework.

If we don’t do any homework, the news media will just tell us what to think. Everyone is biased, and that especially includes so-called objective journalists.  Therefore, if we want to learn about the candidates, we have to take the time to listen to them. That includes checking out their websites and listening to some of their campaign speeches. Otherwise, instead of voting based upon our own biases, we will be voting based upon the biases of our favorite talking heads.

Anyway, my future posts will focus on the issues.  Which of the candidates is more qualified? Which of the candidates has the best agenda.

BTW, here are the second and third posts.


What does it mean to “rig an election”? Well, when someone uses that expression, we usually think of contaminating the vote at the polls. Is that being done? Probably, but in America the vote is counted by local governments in 50 different states. So except in a close election it is difficult to win an election by rigging the vote.

Nevertheless, Donald Trump has said the election is rigged.  Here is how CNN plays the story.

Donald Trump and his surrogates amplified their argument over the weekend that the election is “rigged,” leaving the Republican nominee more isolated as top members of the GOP — including his own running mate — declared their faith in the political system.
Trump opened Sunday with a series of tweets sowing doubt about the legitimacy of the election.

“The election is absolutely being rigged by the dishonest and distorted media pushing Crooked Hillary – but also at many polling places – SAD”

But Trump’s own vice presidential nominee, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, disagreed during an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” saying he will accept the Election Day results.

“We will absolutely accept the result of the election,” he said. “Look, the American people will speak in an election that will culminate on November the 8. But the American people are tired of the obvious bias in the national media. That’s where the sense of a rigged election goes here, Chuck.” (from here)

Are Trump and Mike Pence in disagreement? Listen to what Trump says about 8 minutes and 30 seconds into this video.

Also consider the latest investigation to come out of projectveritasaction.com. I heard about this when Mark Levin interviewed James O’Keefe on his show. That discussion starts at about 20 minutes into the recorded version of the 10/17/2016 episode. (Click here to download the show in a different format.). After the interview with Levin, projectveritasaction.com crashed, of course, but they are back up.

Note also that Real Clear Politics is carrying the story here => New O’Keefe Video: Clinton Campaign, DNC Coordinated With Organizations To Incite Violence At Trump Events.

projectveritasaction.com has a report documenting efforts by H. Clinton’s campaign and other Democrat operatives to foment violence at Trump rallies.

A second video is supposed to come out tomorrow.

Finally, take the time to investigate some of the stuff coming out of WikiLeaks.