Saturday, February 29, 2020

Baseball and Golf Day 2

River Run Golf Links
Bradenton, Florida
February 28, 2020
Another day in the Florida sunshine was experienced. It was cool and I needed to wear my jacket for much of the day, but the skies were clear and the sun was warm on my face. And I did get a touch of sunburn by the time the day was over.  

The day began on the River Run Golf Links in Bradenton, Florida.  We had an early tee time and watched the sunrise over the course. The sunrise in the palm trees was a stunning sight. The picture above is looking down one of the fairways from the tee box.

After golf we went directly to the Pirates Stadium in Bradenton to watch the afternoon game between the Pirates and the Orioles.  The stadium was very nice and we arrived about an hour and a half before game time. It was fun to watch the stadium come alive. I was surprised at how empty the stadium was when game time arrived. But it was a good afternoon for the Orioles. They defeated the still winless in Spring Training Pirates 11-4 to even their record at 4-4. 

Today is a wash-rinse-repeat of yesterday. Golf in the morning and baseball in the afternoon. We will be in Sarasota to see the Orioles host the Marlins.  

By way of note, happy Leap Day! To those of you with birthdays today, I hope your very special and rare day is enjoyable.

— Bob Doan, writing from Sarasota, Florida 

Friday, February 28, 2020

Baseball and Sun

New Atlanta Braves Stadium
Venice, Florida
February 27, 2020
And so it begins. The first day of the Spring Training trip was a success. Even the weather cleared to make the day spectacular. The morning clouds gave was to clear sunny skies. It was cool, but comfortable.

We visited the new Braves facility in Venice and saw a game between them and the Cardinals. You might think that that is not an Orioles game, and that is true, but two former Orioles played. Nick Markakis plays for the Braves and hit a double. Matt Wieters catches for the Cardinals and went hitless.

Today is a golf and baseball day. Golf tee time is 7:14.

Baseball is later in the day.

Day two is off and running.

— Bob Doan, writing from Sarasota, Florida

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Palm Tree Fix

Palm Tree
New Atlanta Braves Stadium
Venice, Florida
February 27, 2020
I did get my Palm Tree fix today. This palm tree is outside of the Braves facility in Venice, Florida. I attended a beautiful afternoon game between the Braves and the Cardinals. The stadium is aptly named Cool Today Park. 

A beautiful cool and windy day. But the sun is shining. 

— Bob Doan, writing from Venice, FL

The All Stars

The All Stars after their Games
Ethan and Jackson
Arundel Middle School
Odenton, MD
February, 26, 2020
Last evening was a celebration of youth and basketball. Ethan and Jackson were both representing their teams in the end-of-the-season All Star games for the GORC league. It was a very exciting time since they both were selected as All Stars.

Jax at Mid-Court before the Game
There was a lively crowd on hand and the best referees from the regular season officiated the games where it was a lot of fun watching the best kids from all of the teams that we had seen play during the season came together to play some exciting basketball. 
Ethan at Mid-Court Before His Game

And the skills were definitely on display. Fouls were kept to a minimum and the boys played basketball. It was fun to see the skills on display and remember how all of the players developed during the season. I had attended almost all of the games and witnessed the players development during the season. 

And now, Basketball is done and it is on to Baseball! But, for one last evening filled with highlights, three-point shots, spectacular defense, and gritty play Basketball was celebrated. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

The Smell of the Rain

I walked outside yesterday morning and the rain was softly falling as predicted. For the first time since last year, the air was scented with the smell of earth and life. It was no longer the cold, sterile smell of the winter, but rebirth and renewal was in the air. 

It was a refreshing experience. It told me that Spring was close! The days are warmer, the sun is shining, I am feeling refreshed and overcoming the lethargy of the dark days. 

Some of the yards are sporting flowers--crocus and daffodils. My yard is colder and while the leaves are up, the flowers have not yet bloomed. But they will soon.

The dark days are over. The daylight is remaining now until 6 PM and the sun is up before 7 AM. Life outside is about to begin again.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

The Decline--The Virus--The World

Yonhap/EPA, via Shutterstock
Here we go------

The stock market was down over 1,000 points yesterday and is poised to continue finding a new bottom number in the days ahead. The morning numbers suggest a small bounce this morning in pre-market trading, but the outlook is not good, for the short term.

What we are seeing is the interconnectedness of the world economies which are in the early stages of being ravaged as a result of the coronavirus. 

Stock markets stabilized a day after coronavirus fears pulled them down worldwide. - The New York Times

U.S., South Korea may scale back military training over coronavirus concerns - OAN

The markets in Asia were down, probably as a result of yesterday's U.S. freefall, but the European markets stabilized. What the day brings here in the U.S. remains to be seen.

What does this mean? We live in a world that is connected--the virus is traveling, the world economies are connected, industrial production is interdependent. Being an isolated country, completely self-dependent and separated from the world is no longer possible. 

We are connected with the world and we need to understand what that means and as a country work within that paradigm for the good of both our country and the world!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, February 24, 2020

Monday Musings - February 24, 2020

1. The race through the year is definitely moving forward. This is the fourth and last Monday of February. Daylight Saving Time is two short weeks away and March begins on Sunday! Based upon the weather so far, the groundhog was correct, we have an early Spring!

2. All stars! Both basketball playing grandsons made the all star team for their leagues! Awesome. And now, on to baseball! Outdoors practices begin March 9th.

3. Sunsets with clouds can be stunning. 

4. And they are off! Spring training began in Sarasota over the weekend. The Baby Birds are 1-1. They have scored 11 runs and given up 10 runs. I am excited that the season is here. 

5. Today in History. The Alamo. On February 24, 1836, in San Antonio, Texas, Colonel William Travis issues a call for help on behalf of the Texan troops defending the Alamo, an old Spanish mission and fortress under attack by the Mexican army.
A native of Alabama, Travis moved to the Mexican state of Texas in 1831. He soon became a leader of the growing movement to overthrow the Mexican government and establish an independent Texan republic. When the Texas revolution began in 1835, Travis became a lieutenant-colonel in the revolutionary army and was given command of troops in the recently captured city of San Antonio de Bexar (now San Antonio). On February 23, 1836, a large Mexican force commanded by General Antonio Lopez de Santa Ana arrived suddenly in San Antonio. Travis and his troops took shelter in the Alamo, where they were soon joined by a volunteer force led by Colonel James Bowie.


Europe Confronts Coronavirus as Italy Battles an Eruption of Cases - The New York Times

Seven wounded in shooting at flea market in Houston - Reuters

Israeli jets strike Islamic Jihad targets in Syria and Gaza: Israeli military - OAN

Assange's fate hangs in balance as UK court considers U.S. extradition bid - Reuters

Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

Education is not the means of showing people how to get what they want. Education is an exercise by means of which enough men, it is hoped, will learn to want what is worth having.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Funny Signs

Virginia is for lovers, I am guessing that it is also for people with a refined sense of humor. 

Yesterday, while visiting wineries/vineyards in Loudon County, Virginia, we happened upon a sign that made me smile and also decide to take an image of it. I am glad the owners of the winery had a sense of humor. I am also glad that wineries are a place where families can go to have fun for an afternoon. 

It was a beautiful day, with clear blue skies and a warm sun in the sky. It was hard to believe that it was only the 22nd of February and I was visiting wineries wearing only a jersey shirt. One of the wineries had fire pits roaring and it would have been nice to sit and enjoy a bottle of wine around the fire pit, but as it was getting late and consuming too much wine while on a road trip is not recommended, we passed on the fire pits and returned home. 

We had a great afternoon, visited some nice wineries, and enjoyed a mid-Winter's day.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Red Herring

The Russians--are they inside of your closet or cell phone? 

Something that should not be in the news and also should not be getting people fired for doing their jobs has become another red herring to distract the news and the populace from the bigger issues of the day. 

There are two articles in the New York Times that discuss the dismantlement of the intelligence community which is underway in Washington. Like the minimization of the State Department before it, there will be long-term negative effects upon the security of this country if allowed to become a full-fledged replacement of qualified independent intelligence professionals with inexperienced puppets.

Richard Grenell Begins Overhauling Intelligence Office, Prompting Fears of Partisanship - The New York Times

Will Richard Grenell Destroy the Intelligence Community? - The New York Times

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Friday, February 21, 2020

Short Week Friday

It has arrived again. The day that much of working America longs for, Friday, has arrived. 

And this was a short workweek for Federal employees and most schools because of President's Day. So Friday seemingly arrived quicker.

That of course was only for those of my friends and acquaintances who are not retired and still work a regular job. But still, I must confess that it is a big relief when Friday arrives and only the 8 hours of the workday stand between me and the weekend!

A thought about holidays though. We enjoy 8 of the 10 Federal holidays in a 5.5 month period from September until mid-February. The other two, Memorial Day and Independence Day, are the only holidays from mid-February until the beginning of September. It is a long stretch!

I remember in Europe, when I was younger and in the Air Force that there was what we called a Belgian Weekend which began about noon on Friday and ended about noon on Monday! Wow--I could use weekends like that!

Nonetheless--have a happy Friday whether you have to work or not! The weekend is upon us once again.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Critters at the Feeder

Bluejay at Feeder
Ithaca, NY
February 16, 2020
Watching birds and squirrels at bird feeders is an entertaining way to enjoy breakfast and the quiet time that follows.

Bluejay Arriving for a Peanut
Ithaca, NY
February 15, 2020

Sometimes, as the birds come and go, I manage a special shot, like the bluejay arriving to snatch a peanut. 

Birds at a feeder provide some minutes of enjoyment. And then, sometimes, additional critters arrive to enjoy a peanut of two.

Squirrel Thief
Ithaca, NY
February 16, 2020
They were cold winter's days. I believe the temperatures outside were somewhere about 0 at the time the birds were arriving on the 15th. It was just too cold to be outside. It was about 20 degrees warmer on the 16th.

But the animals were out and eating and entertaining.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, February 19, 2020


During our trip to Upstate New York over the weekend, Chris and I had the opportunity to see thousands of Canada geese. 

The first sighting was on Valentine's Day just north of Harrisburg along the Susquehanna River during a light snow storm. The geese were taking flight, thousands of them, circling until the squadrons were formed and then beginning the journey northward. Another user sign of Spring--the geese are headed north. I wish I had been able to get an image of the multitude skeins working to form wedges and begin the journey. They were stratified with each successive skein circling to gain height and arrive at their desired flying altitude. Through the intermittent snow, it was an awesome sight to see. 

Geese Along the West Bank of Cayuga Lake
Sheldrake Point, Ovid, NY
February 15, 2020
The following day, Chris and I visited Sheldrake Point Winery and saw at least a thousand geese along the West Bank of Cayuga Lake. It was a magnificent sight--all of the geese on shore and in the water. We stopped the car along the road to film the scene. The geese were everywhere, even out into the water. 

On two successive days we experienced thousands of geese. We wondered whether these were the same geese we had seen taking flight from near Harrisburg the day before. But decided probably not. Although, who knows?

It was, on two successive days, an inspiring sight to witness.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Spring is Close

How do I know that Spring is close? 

Golf Net in the Yard with Makayla
February 17, 2020
It felt Spring arriving yesterday. The temperature soared to 55 degrees and the sun was shining. I could tell that the yard was beginning to dry and I wanted to get the tractor out and start grooming the yard for the growing season except that the battery was dead. So then I decided to get my Jag, Cat, out for a drive, but the battery was dead. And my battery charger was out of the house as I had loaned it to someone. Ugh. 

Spring is definitely close. I even got my golf net out yesterday and began hitting balls into it to get my swing in shape, not that I have a swing to get into shape, before the upcoming Spring Training trip. I hit over 100 balls to begin the process. 

Perhaps I felt the need to experience Spring after spending the weekend in Upstate New York where the scenery is covered with snow and the temperatures were below 0 for most of the time I was there. Even so, I am going to enjoy the sunshine whenever it arrives as it seems that there is a definite lack of solar energy right now because of the pervasive cloud cover.

The only thing I did not do was get my drone, Radio Flyer, out to survey the winter's devastation. There are a lot of trees down and many more to fall as the ravaged ash trees become homes for insects and dinner plates for woodpeckers.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, February 17, 2020

Monday Musings - February 17, 2020

1. It is already President's Day and that means that February is more than half complete. The year is slipping by. 

2. I noted that it was 60 degrees warmer when I arrived back in Elkridge yesterday than it had been on Saturday morning in Ithaca. The change was Minus 6 in Ithaca to 54 degrees in Elkridge. 

3. Yesterday was a tough day for the grandsons in the basketball playoffs. Both teams lost. Sadly. Next week are the consolation games.

4. Spring Training is underway in Sarasota, Florida. In less than two weeks I will be seeing the Baby Birds for myself and getting a feel for the upcoming season. 

5. It was great driving to Upstate New York over the weekend. We did not have to contend with crushing traffic either going up or coming back. 

Canada Geese on Cayuga Lake
February 15, 2020
6. Geese. We saw thousands of Canada geese over the weekend. Some were in Central Pennsylvania taking off on their journey north and others were settled on the shores and waters of Cayuga Lake near Sheldrake Point, New York. 

7. Of course, I visited two of my favorite Finger Lakes wineries over the weekend to restock my collection of Rieslings. Sadly, one of the wineries is closing, Americana Vineyards apparently has fallen upon hard times. It is unclear whether the financial difficulties are tax or strictly over extended business practices. 

8. Today in History. On February 17, 1904, Giacomo Puccini’s opera Madame Butterfly premieres at the La Scala theatre in Milan, Italy.
The young Puccini decided to dedicate his life to opera after seeing a performance of Giuseppe Verdi’s Aida in 1876. In his later life, he would write some of the best-loved operas of all time: La Boheme (1896), Tosca (1900), Madame Butterfly (1904) and Turandot (left unfinished when he died in 1924). Not one of these, however, was an immediate success when it opened. La Boheme, the now-classic story of a group of poor artists living in a Paris garret, earned mixed reviews, while Tosca was downright panned by critics.


S.C. authorities investigating death of 6-year-old missing girl - OAN 

Slowed by the Coronavirus, China Struggles to Reopen for Business - The New York Times

Fourteen Americans evacuated from another cruise ship in Japan have tested positive for the virus.  - The New York Times

Hundreds of Americans flown home from cruise ship - Reuters

No let up in Taliban attacks, fresh orders awaited over deal with U.S. - Reuters

President's Day Quote for the Week

In celebration of President's Day, a quote from George Washington.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Coloring with Mom
Coloring With Mom
Hunt, New York
February, 14, 2020
Coloring Together
Mom, Dad, and Me
February 14, 2020
As I wrote, Valentine’s Day was special. I had the opportunity to spend some time with my mom and dad. We had an enjoyable time together. One of the really cool things that I did with my mom was coloring a picture. We spent some quality time together at the kitchen table selecting colors and filling in the blank areas on the picture. It was something I remember doing when I was a small boy.  She would help me stay between the lines and choose the colors. I always had some wild color combinations in my head, like why can't the sky be green? . 

It was a special time with Mom and Dad was right there watching over the production of the masterpiece. It was a creation and the markers we used worked better than Crayola crayons. I remember that when I was a kid and was coloring that the crayons would break, at least the tips if not the entire crayon, and when they got warm in my hand the wax begin to melt. The markers we used on Friday had none of those problems. 

We made a memory together. The picture we colored was totally secondary.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Valentine's Day to Remember

Hunt, NY
Temperature 3 Degrees
February 14, 2020
I hope Valentine’s Day was a good experience for you. I was able to have both lunch and dinner with my parents and Chris and that made the day perhaps the most special Valentine's Day ever.

The drive to New York was great. There was very little traffic and we made the trip in near record time. Driving is a lot of fun when the roads are open. Last evening, as we drove the last part of the trip and arrived in Ithaca the roads were so empty that they were eeriest devoid traffic. It was as if the Zombie Apocalypse had begun.  

Out the Window
Ithaca, NY minus 6 as dawn breaks
February 15, 2020
Just by way of update. It is minus 6 this morning when I woke in Ithaca. Cold only begins to describe the atmosphere. But it was clear and gorgeous. The sunrise stretched across the entire horizon over Cayuga Lake. 

Despite the cold, it was good to see the sun, finally. I needed sunshine, and I could feel its warmth on my face even in the cold. Next, I need a palm tree fix.

-- Bob Doan, writing from Ithaca, NY

Friday, February 14, 2020

It is cold

I just took this picture of the dashboard thermometer. We are a few miles south of the NY-PA border headed north. Ugh is got cold. It was 39 when we departed home at 5:20.

Welcome to the cold. We are also north of the snow line which began just south of Mansfield, PA.

— Bob Doan, somewhere in PA on route 15

The Flamingo

The Flamingo
February 13, 2020
Chris and I celebrated Valentine's Day early. We went to dinner last evening and exchanged cards.

In a great stroke of complete surprise Chris got me a flamingo that I had seen in Pier 1. I was very pleased as I love flamingos and we have a room in our Florida Home dedicated to the birds. Yes, they can be a bit overwhelming, but they are just the ultimate warm climate bird!

It was a great Valentine's Day celebration and now we are off on a journey to the cold northlands to bring some Valentine's cheer to a very special couple.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Body of Work

I have noticed a trend in reporting that focuses upon specific acts  or statements which are then used to arrive at a larger conclusion about that persons intentions. Often the acts or statements are out of context and when examined in the light of their "body of work" are clearly intended to portray an facade to a specific group of people, usually for the intention of getting reelected or encouraging support from their base of support. 

I have been amazed at how quickly people grasp at these singular acts to justify a candidate's position which, when examined further, are not supported by actions. 

Here is an example from the State of the Union Address. The New York Times reports

This is misleading. 

Not only has President Trump failed to strengthen Medicare and Social Security, but the financial outlook for both trusts has not improved or worsened. That is at least partly the result of Mr. Trump’s tax law, which has left the Treasury Department to collect fewer taxes from Americans and, in turn, invest less money into each program. Last April, the government projected that Medicare funds would be depleted by 2026, three years earlier than estimated in 2017. The report noted that less money will flow into the fund because of low wages and lower taxes. 

And interesting observation--what was said is starkly different from reality. 

And another item from the New York Times analysis of the State of the Union address.

This is false.

The nonpartisan International Trade Commission has estimated that the agreement would create about 28,000 jobs in the auto sector. President Trump’s own United States trade representative has a higher estimate — 76,000 new jobs in the next five years — but still one that falls short of Mr. Trump’s claims today. The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement raises barriers to imported cars and car parts in an effort to encourage auto manufacturing in the United States, which results in some job gains. But in so doing, it will also raise the price of American cars and other vehicles, and lower both vehicle consumption and production, economists say.

Everything needs context. Especially in an election year.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

With malice toward none, with charity for all

The gray rainy days are making me want escape to somewhere with blue skies and bright sunshine along with warm temperatures. 

Oh wait, I have a place like that in Florida, but I have to work. And this weekend I am heading north to spend Valentines Day with a very special couple--my parents. I hope it doesn't snow. 

Baltimore Weather Forecast February 12-17
It is going to be a cold weekend in Maryland, but no rain. There is supposed to be sun, finally. And frigid temperatures. I guess it is good that I am headed north into snow and colder temperatures.

Today, however, is an important day--it is President Lincoln's birthday. He was born February 12, 1809. Of course he is famous as a president and for the Gettysburg Address, but one of his most notable quotes comes from his second inaugural address given March 4, 1865 on the eve of victory in the Civil War:  With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations. 

Lincoln's words are a stark contrast from those which we hear on a daily basis it seems coming from the highest halls of Washington, D.C.

Lincoln is generally considered one of the three best presidents along with Washington and Franklin Roosevelt. He died just 42 days into his second term and just about a week after the Civil War was won. I wonder how different our country would be today had he lived to govern over the reconstruction and heal the wounds that led the nation to war. 

Our leaders need to take note of his greatness and his vision for the war torn country. True greatness is embodied in the words: With malice toward none, with charity for all.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Fun Fact--Guess which other famous person was born on February 12, 1809. Answer tomorrow!

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Vindictiveness and Crowd Mentality

As the days continue in the DC area since last week's acquittal, the intensity of the verbal abuse seems to increase exponentially. And with the abuse, it seems that rational people are being swept into the maelstrom.

I read an opinion piece yesterday by someone who is being victimized by the abuse. He wrote about the abuse from a different perspective, which sent me scurrying back into my memory for similarities that I remember from history. 

James Comey, former Director of the FBI was the author, but it was not so much about the abuse that he personally is experiencing, but rather the reaction of rational, Christian-professing people to the abusive vitriol. I know many will argue about Comey and what he did--that in not the point here. In, James Comey: As usual, Trump called me a sleaze. But the audience reaction to his rant was more upsetting, he writes:

The important thing was what happened in the audience, where there were plenty of intelligent people of deep commitment to religious principle. They laughed and smiled and clapped as a president of the United States lied, bullied, cursed and belittled the faith of other leaders. That was the deeply disturbing part of the East Room moment, and should challenge us all.

How it is possible that they didn’t get up and walk out — that they seemed to participate actively in something they should know was deeply wrong? How could they smile and laugh? Because they are people. And, like all people, they too easily surrender their individual moral authority to a group, where it can be hijacked by the loudest, harshest voice. I know because I’ve done it.

from Wikipedia
I was reminded of a confession written by Lutheran Pastor Martin Niemoeller, which is quoted in part in the National Holocaust Museum:

First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—
     Because I was not a socialist.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—
     Because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
     Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

Where are we headed? 

"Cheap grace is preaching forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession. … Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate."

Where are we headed as a people, a society, as a country? I think we need to take a self assessment and pledge ourselves to show civility towards others and resist the temptation to become one of the crowd.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, February 10, 2020

Monday Musings - February 10, 2020

1. Mid-February is upon us. How quickly the days seem to be passing.

2. Baseball season is finally upon us. Orioles pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training tomorrow! And so it begins. My pre-season prediction, unfortunately, is for the Orioles to finish 57-105. It will be their third consecutive 100 loss season and their fourth consecutive losing season.

3. I am heading to Orioles Spring Training in just over two weeks to review the team's rebuilding progress in person. 

4. The weather was beautiful this past weekend. It was nice to enjoy pleasant February days while waiting for the big one. 

5. As the winter continues into the middle of February, I am thankful that it has been mild here.

6. Civility matters! We need to be understanding of each other. Disagree over facts, but do not attack the person.

7. Winners should be magnanimous, losers should be humble, and those on the sidelines should remember where they are.

8. Counting our blessings means that every day we recognize that we have more good things in our lives than we do negative things.

9. Today in History. On February 10, 1996, after three hours, world chess champion Garry Kasparov loses the first game of a six-game match against Deep Blue, an IBM computer capable of evaluating 200 million moves per second.  Man was ultimately victorious over machine, however, as Kasparov bested Deep Blue in the match with three wins and two ties and took home the $400,000 prize. An estimated 6 million people worldwide followed the action on the Internet.

Coronavirus deaths climb as China corrals sick in quarantine facilities - The Washington Post

Foreign interference in elections is unacceptable. Congress must make it illegal. - The Washington Post

Ransomware Attacks Grow, Crippling Cities and Businesses - The New York Times

3 Officers Wounded in Targeted Attacks on Police in the Bronx - The New York Times

China's coronavirus death toll surpasses SARS - Reuters

Iranian 'Victory' satellite fails to reach orbit - Reuters

Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

The objective I propose is quite simple to state: to foster the infrastructure of democracy - the system of a free press, unions, political parties, universities - which allows a people to choose their own way to develop their own culture, to reconcile their own differences through peaceful means. - Ronald Reagan

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Vengeance vs Civility

The country is recovering from the events of the past weeks. We have arrived at the beginning of the new week and I have had the opportunity to process some of the recent events.

The biggest topic on my mind was how we ended the week. I am concerned about vengeance and revenge that has been and is being extracted from people. The playground mentality that we are living with right now at the highest levels of our government suggest that "to the victor belong the spoils" and that the winners get to set the rules. In my mind too many people are supporting this thuggish mentality. Too many self-professed Christian people, at that.

There is a higher authority who has delivered a very clear message about vengeance, retribution, and revenge. 

Romans 12:19-20
 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
    if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

Leviticus 19:18:
You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.
Deuteronomy 32:35:
Vengeance is mine, and recompense, for the time when their foot shall slip; for the day of their calamity is at hand, and their doom comes swiftly.’

Consequences? Yes, there are consequences for actions, but consequences should not be equated with vengeance or revenge. There is no room for playground thuggishness in our government. We must break the cycle of "eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth." The language of our leaders sets the tone for the entire country. The consequences of inciting language and the liberal meting of vengeance will be suffered by us all.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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