Tag Archives: marriage

Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman

When Lynda Carter played Wonder Woman on T.V. I never watched the show.  It struck me as silly and juvenile.  Hearing good things about the new Wonder Woman movie, I decided to take Elizabethe to see it.

Here are my observations…

  • Gal Gardot makes for a pretty super hero
  • The whole premise of an island full of women with no men strikes me as silly, but hey, it’s based of mythology
  • There’s an anti-marriage message in one scene.  It’s sad.  The guy could have said, “Marriage works when the husband and wife work at it.”… But no, they had to make it sound like marriage is bad.
  • It does illustrate that man has agency, but misses the reason why.

Food Court

After the movie we hit the food court at the mall.  It hit me that is one place you can come in with a drink from somewhere else and not be told you can’t bring outside food inside.  So, my $7.50 drink from the movie accompanied my lunch.

The food court is also nice because Elizabethe can get what she wants, and I can get what I want.  We don’t have to worry about going to a fast food place that doesn’t have what one of us wants.

Business Changes

Business Changes

Business changes are normal.  A business must evolve in order to keep its competitive edge.  Change is good, as they say.  I’m not posting this on my photography site.  It seems to be more of a topic for my friends, and not so much for potential clients.

I found myself saying, “I don’t do weddings,” the other day.  While, I will do weddings for people I know, I’m tired of doing weddings for strangers.

Here are some reasons why…

  • Tired of drunken wedding party members.  It’s hard enough to get people to cooperate when they are sober.
  • Disrespectful behavior towards the significance of marriage.  I’m talking about smashing cake in your new spouse’s face, vulgar dances during the reception (I’m talking about twerking).  As a side note:  Many of the weddings I’ve photographed where the couple smash the cake in each other’s face have ended in divorce.    Three of them within the first year!
  • Disrespect of my craft.  “Oh, we don’t want anything retouched.”  “Can we get all the images on a CD?”
  • Rude guests who pull out their camera, tablet or phone to take a picture.  Or, should I say, guest who do not respect my craft.
  • Nickel-and-dimers.   It cost the photographer a lot to shoot a wedding.  A day of their time, lots of wear-n-tear on their equipment, batteries, etc.   The after-wedding work is intense too.  Converting 1,000 images from RAW to JPEG, and to do it well, takes time.

While I have fun photographing some weddings and receptions, I have more fun doing a fine art portrait.  It’s time to simply concentrate on my craft.  I am also going to concentrate on landscape and travel photography more.

copyright 2016 db walton

Portrait of my Granddaughter

Part of this change is I will no longer do business with nickel-and-dimers.  My prices are my price and my profit margin is quite low.

With that said… I’m off to attend my Finger Lakes Professional Photographers meeting.

 

Truly Conservative

Truly Conservative

I think this country has lost the definition of what it means to be a conservative.  It has been a long time since I’ve seen a truly conservative candidate.  Now I need to vent.

The very word itself means one who resists changing values.  The word liberal means one who wants to change values to fit their desires at the moment.  Yes, liberals will find conservatives very pig-headed when it comes to their values.  If they find a someone who is not, then they are not a conservative, but either a liberal or moderate.

What are those values?

One who is truly a conservative…

  • believes in God (and the 10 Commandments)
  • will only support traditional marriage – one between one man and one woman
  • will not support abortion
  • believes children deserve to be raised by a loving mother and father
  • does not believe in decriminalization of dangerous drugs, prostitution, euthanasia and other things God has told us are wrong
  • believes sex outside of a marriage between a man and a woman is a sin
  • believes an individual’s rights (in our case, those granted by the U.S. Constitution) are more important than government
  • believes those rights are God-given
  • doesn’t discriminate against people because of the color of their skin or their gender or their religion or their ancestors or the language they speak
  • believes an able-bodied person is responsible for their own welfare and believes the idle person should “not eat the bread” of the working person
  • believes people should be free from bondage (whether physical or economic) and the government shouldn’t place people in bondage through excessive taxation

List for Liberals

Creating a list of liberal values is like nailing Jello to the wall.  Why?  Because their values are ever changing.  That’s what it means to be liberal for Pete’s sake.

Having said this, here are some examples of liberal values over the years (this isn’t to say all liberals hold these values, but using the Democratic party as an example, here are some real-life examples)…

  • Pro-slavery (while today, a liberal would deny such claim, in the 1860s liberals wanted slavery)
  • Anti-black vote (see above)
  • Anti-woman vote  (see above)
  • Pro-abortion
  • Pro-gay marriage
  • Anti-2nd Amendment  (Oh, and while we’re on this one, read carefully what the Lord said in Section 134:2 of the Doctrine and Covenants, “We believe that no government can exist in peace, except such laws are framed and held inviolate as will secure to each individual the free exercise of conscience, the right and control of property, and the protection of life.”  Color, italics, bold and red added for emphasis.)
  • Pro-public assistance
  • Pro-socialism/communism
  • Anti-religion

Black and White

While I’m making it sound black and white, there are varying degrees.  For example, I would not call Gary Johnson (the Libertarian candidate) a conservative.  He’s a moderate who is very liberal on social issues, and very conservative on government/fiscal issues.  And, I think the majority of people fall in the category of being moderate when it comes to social issues.  Church going people who live their religion will fall in to the conservative side of things, while more radical non-religious people will lean to the liberal side.

Unfortunately, too many people associate liberalism and/or socialism with humanitarianism.  Too many people associate conservatism with vigilantism and extremism.  Neither can be further from the truth.  But, taking one issue at a time, one could keep score if they want and figure out where they fall.  For example, if you are pro-abortion, you favor a liberal social value.  If you are anti-abortion, you favor a conservative social value.  If you went through the lists above you could keep a tally on both sides and see where it places you.

Perhaps there will come a day when abortion is outlawed.  I’m sure if that comes, liberals around the country will deny liberals were ever for abortion.  (Just like today they deny they were ever pro-slavery.  Again, it is a doctrine of changing values.)

Boldt Castle

Boldt Castle

To celebrate 17 years together, Elizabethe and I went to Boldt Castle today.  What the GPS reported as a 2 hour 35 minute drive (which is normally correct), was actually closer to 3 hours.  (Note to self:  It takes 3 hours to get to Alexandria Bay via I-90 and I-81.)

copyright 2014 db walton

Boldt Castle

Once at Alexandria Bay, you park, buy your ferry ticket, and ride to the castle.  It takes about 10 minutes to get there by boat, but you may wait up to 30 minutes for the boat.  S0, plan on 10 to 40 minutes before you arrive on Heart (Hart) Island.

The castle was built by Boldt of the Waldorf Astoria fame.  It’s a walking tour so plan accordingly.

There are food concessions on the island, but they are quite basic – sandwiches, hot dogs, etc.  And, if you bring your own food, it has to be consumed at the docks as they don’t allow food or beverage past the gates.

copyright 2014 db walton

Boldt Castle Power House

On our way home, we stopped for dinner at Brenda’s Café on Route 31 just outside Port Byron.  I will be reviewing it for Get It Done On 31(tm)  (http://www.GetItDoneOn31.biz)

As you may guess, we took Route 31 home once we got far enough south.

It was a delightful wedding anniversary celebration.  We’ve decided we don’t do little day trips like this enough and need to do more.

All photographs in this blog, unless otherwise noted, are copyrighted by D. Brent Walton.  All rights reserved.  Contents of this blog are copyright 2014 db walton and all rights are reserved.  Any use, reproduction, broadcast, reposting, etc., is prohibited unless permission has been granted in writing by the author/copyright owner.  Please photography by db walton llc at www.dbwalton.com

 

Rude

Rude

One of the most rude songs I’ve ever heard is titled Rude.  One of the local stations repeatedly plays it.  I’m undecided if the title describes the character in the song, the song itself, or the dad in the song.  I think the author has aimed the title at the dad in the song, in which case, it makes the song all the more rude.

After a failed marriage, someone close to me said she decided if she were to remarry should would give her dad complete veto power.  Literature has its share of stories about two lovers who decide to marry, and their parents are completely against it, but they do it any way.  It makes for a nice story, but in reality, it is typically a formula for disaster.  By allowing her parents veto power, this woman acknowledged they can see things she may not.  Hence the saying, “Love is blind.”

My fear is that young women hearing this song will swoon and hope they have boyfriend like that.

News Flash!

If the character in the song Rude is your ideal of a boyfriend, you shouldn’t be dating.  And, if you marry someone like that, it is sad to say, you will get what you deserve (and it won’t be a happy moment.)

I’ve heard it said many times that divorce is to easy in our modern society.  Perhaps marriage is too easy.  Upon hearing the song Rude, I immediately thought about the story of Jacob and Rachel.  (If you’re unfamiliar with the story, I’m not going to re-tell it, but I encourage you to read it in the Old Testament.  It starts in Genesis 29.)  Although I do not think arranged marriages are equitable, I do think parents-approved marriages are more likely to last.

Pageant 2014

I took a trip out to Hill Cumorah this afternoon.  Last night was the first performance.  This afternoon, I got there as they were concluding their devotional.  Not only do cast members practice like crazy to put on this pageant, between practices, many of them participate in musical performances at devotionals.

After a while, I could smell the BBQ smoke from the food tent.  I thought this picture would tell the story about how important the food concessions are at pageant…

copyright 2014 db walton

List of Charities

Those are the many projects and charitable organizations that receive financial help from the sell of food at pageant.  So, when you go to pageant, please patronize the food concessions.

When you aren’t at pageant, it is important to patronize the local restaurants and businesses too.   The public facilities (streets, street lights, sidewalks, water, sewer, etc.) are maintained by our taxes.  Our property taxes are among the highest in the state.  These businesses need your support.  By doing your part in patronizing these businesses you will help keep Palmyra from falling in to disrepair.

For those who have never been to Hill Cumorah Pageant, here are a few tips to help you plan…

  • Plan your trip about 12 months in advance.  Please don’t wait until June, July, or during pageant to make plans.  You will most likely be disappointed, and we’d rather you have a pleasant experience.  Plan ahead.
  • Lodging is sparse, and more expensive than lodging in the west.  (see my comments above on property taxes)  Plan on spending more on lodging.
  • Food prices are low, and most places in Palmyra offer generous portions.  Please plan on eating most of your meals at local restaurants.  You’ll get your money’s worth.  A calzone at Nima’s (under $10) will easily feed two adults.  A $7 lunch special at Happiness Garden is more than I can finish, and I typically have leftovers for breakfast.
  • Services are inexpensive here.  If your car breaks down, you’ll find auto repair prices are quite reasonable.
  • Although we are about 6 miles from a Walmart, I encourage you to shop local if you need something.  We have a pharmacy right in the middle of the village (across from the Grandin building) that has competitive prices and can get you an emergency Rx for what you’d pay at Walmart and you probably won’t have to wait as long.  We also have a grocery store (Breen’s).
  • Try to spend at least 3 days here.  Don’t rush your visit.
  • Pageant attracts a lot of people.  There are only 3800 of us who actually live in the village of Palmyra, and there are about 10,000 tourist on any given day.  So, heaven forbid, if you have a bad experience with someone, chances are they are a tourist too — don’t blame the locals.  Protesters are not local to Palmyra, in fact, most residents dislike the protesters being here during pageant.
  • We get over 1,000 people attending sacrament meeting.  Arrive a little early.
  • If you’re part of a group that is using the local chapel, please remember we’re just one ward meeting in that building.  Please help us out by leaving the building spotless.  Accept our apologies if it wasn’t spotless when you arrived.  So many people use our building that we cannot clean it between uses.
  • Remember the Sacred Grove is just that… It’s sacred.  Enjoy it.  Spend time there.  (But, remember, we have mosquitoes.   Prepare for them and your visit will be more pleasant.)   To me, it’s an outdoor temple.  It is one place we know God the Father and Jesus Christ have visited.  I love to spend time in the grove.
  • Other sites that have buildings/visitors’ centers will be crowded during pageant.  Be prepared for crowds and/or waiting in lines.

Of course, we’d love for you to visit when it is not pageant season too.

Home Teaching and Family

I once home taught a family whom I was told will only allow Brother Walton to enter their home.  I remember feeling frustrated that nothing was happening in their lives, but at least they’d talk to me.  It wasn’t until I was released as their home teacher that the husband became active.  I was happy, but at the same time questioned my abilities as a home teacher.  Why didn’t they get active when I was their home teacher?

Back in the mid 1990s, I home taught another family.  I will be the first to admit, I’m not the greatest home teacher.  I struggle with getting out each month and often question whether I’m doing any good.  I don’t believe in just going through the motions, however, yet often times, I feel that is exactly what I’m doing — going through the motions.

Occasionally, I connect with a family I’ve been assigned.  That’s a good feeling, but what is an even better feeling is when a family connects with you.  Even better yet is when you both connect.

And, so it was with this family.  There was a connection.

A few years ago, through social media, I re-connected with this family.  Over the last few years, I’ve been kept abreast of happenings within the family:  divorce, struggling to make needed changes, struggling to get active in the church, re-marriage, being sealed in the temple, daughter deciding to serve a mission and new additions to the family.

You never know what’s going to happen.  I’m just happy I got assigned to home teach her family way back when she was a young mother married to a guy who wasn’t a member of our church.  I thought for sure he’d join the church and the two of them would get active.  Little did I know that marriage wouldn’t last, and neither would her next one.  Little did I know she’d meet a guy who was taking the missionary discussions.  Little did I know he’d join the church, marry her, and take her to the temple and they would be sealed.  Little did I know her daughter would decide to serve a mission.  You just don’t know what is going to happen.

All of this has renewed my faith in home teaching.  I honestly can’t take credit for any of this; I’m just thankful God gave me the opportunity to get to know her and see how her life has been blessed.  And so it is with home teaching:  Sometimes you shouldn’t get caught up in believing you are there to do something.  Just go along for the ride and trust that God will work his miracles.

And, since my home teaching is done for this month, next month when I knock on the door of one of my less-active families, I’ll take hope in knowing that someday I may be hearing about a visit to the temple, or a son or daughter leaving on a mission and I’ll say to myself, “I remember when I used to home teach them.”

copyright 2013 db walton

Merry Christmas

We Survived

Someone sent me a link to a video talking about how we survived living in an era with lead paint, no seat belts, and so forth.  We were a generation that welcomed technology and change, but I think we let it get out of hand.  After all, it is our children’s generation that is struggling with moral issues.  The question is, “Will they survive?”

Recently I read a response in an advice column where the young people were advised not to have sex on the first meeting.  Wow!  When I was that age, the advice was not to kiss on the first date.  The writer went on to say that if you do, make sure you’re clear that it is just sex and it doesn’t mean anything.  He then went on about how he was “having regular sex” with a girl, and she thought they were “dating”.  He said this bothered him because they “weren’t dating”, they were just “having sex”, and he didn’t want her to think they were dating because he was having sex with other girls too.

If this is the type of advise floating around in the rising generation, they are in trouble.  I say they because I’ve already lived about 66% of my life compared to their 25%.

Years ago I interviewed with a company owned by Ross Perot – EDS.  They did a lot of background checks, and shortly after my interview, a newspaper article came out about Perot’s background checks.  It seems someone had got really upset because Perot had is private investigators investigate an affair the man had.    The spokesman for Perot’s company explained that if someone couldn’t be trusted with their marriage contract, how could they be trusted as an employee.

I believe their is a link to marrital commitments and, in general, trust.  We’ve drifted away from the two-fold purpose of sexual relationships:  1) to propagate and rear children  – teaching them strong values and morals, and 2) to strengthen the bond between a husband and wife.  After all, the first commandment given to man was to ‘multiply and replenish the earth.’  God then commanded Adam to ‘cleave’ unto his wife.

What does this have to do with survival?

Two things:  1)  The reproductive rate of the human species requires about 2.7 children to come from each couple.  Thus, 1 or 2 children, and eventually that line will die off; 3 or more and that line will survive.  Scientific models have shown that it is virtually impossible for the human race to maintain an even population.  It is either going to expand or become extinct.  2)  Moral (sexual) decay brings about additional moral and social problems.  History is full of examples on an individual basis and on a societal basis.

Packing for the Route 31 Tour

Today was my second day of packing for the Route 31 tour.  I tell you, packing will take longer than the actual trip.  I’ve had to charge a lot of batteries, clean lenses, arrange photo bags, and so forth.

Four o’clock rolled around before I knew it and I was off to our stake conference leadership session.  It was a great session.  Our stake president mentioned how the church has come out of obscurity in the media and the attention – good and bad – that we get.

It seems that a good portion of the media has to do with the church’s stand on homosexuality and marriage.  Some say, because the church has come out with a compassionate web site on homosexuality that the church has changed its position.  As someone who grew up in the church, I can state that the church has not made any change in position.

Growing up in the church, I repeatedly learned about the parable of the lost sheep.  I was taught that when someone strays from the commandments that we are to show forth greater love to bring them back to the fold.   Another story is that of the stoning of the harlot.  Jesus simply told her accusers that if any of them were sinless, they were to cast the first stone.  He then turned to the lady and said, “Go and sin no more.”  (That last line is so often ignored.)

The church’s stance on marriage is still the same, and will always be:  Marriage is ordained of God and is a sacred covenant between a man and a woman.  (See the Proclamation on the Family at www.lds.org)

During the adult session of conference, the media and the church came up again.  It becomes obviously clear that the harder the adversary fights against the church, the more people flock to the church.

It reminds me of both my chemistry and mathematics education.  In chemistry, molecules seek a balance.  In math, equations balance.  So it appears to me that in this world, the law of opposition exists.  The difference is, in the end, unlike chemistry and math, good will win.

Had you asked me when I was a 12 year old what would be the great conflict of the times when I was in my 50s, I would have been hard pressed to come up with something.  After all, life in the 1960s was so innocent and naïve.   Had you told me the great conflict of the last days would be sexual immorality (well, first, as a 12 year old, I would have been totally unaware of that would have meant) I would have been disgusted once I understood.

Facebook has been a big eye opener.  Before social media, we didn’t have a very good means of keeping tabs on old friends.  Now, we see people who openly abandon their beliefs and publicize it on Facebook.  On the other hand, we have the opposite, people who repent and change their lives, and publish it on Facebook.  For each one on one side, there seems to be one on the other side.  The gray between the two seems to be disappearing.

Perhaps those switch to the dark side, can’t see it.  I watched a pretty young lady from California turn from the teachings she was raised with.  At first, it seemed just a little rebellious, but after she came out in full defiance, changed her Facebook about page to reflect her defiance, things began to change rapidly.  Her last Facebook profile photo didn’t even resemble the girl I knew in California.

On the other hand, I indirectly became acquainted with another young lady.  A friend not knowing I know the girl, mentioned the girls dress and grooming.  I knew right off who she was talking about.  The irony is, the girl joined the church.  Now, a few years later, she is a vibrant, beautiful young lady.

People do see it.

I’m not saying you can judge a book by its cover.  What I’m saying is immorality changes your countenance in a bad way.  Righteousness changes it in a good way.

I digress.

Conference was great.  I especially liked President and Sister Christenson’s talks, and Sister Clawson’s talk.

To quote Pres. Christenson, “It’s true — all true.”

183rd Annual General Conference

Today would have been my good friend Enrico’s 67th birthday.  I think he would have taken great delight in having General Conference on his birthday.

Before conference started, we met with a BBQ company about vending food at our July 20th Art in the Yard Sale.  As the owner reviewed the menu, I started getting hungry.  They are going to be a great asset to our Art in the Yard Sale.

During the first session of conference, three important points were brought forth.  Before I reiterate them, I want to say what my mission president taught us.  He said the first session of conference is to the world, not just members of the church.  Since learning that, I’ve noticed the first session always has messages that are farther reaching than just Latter-day Saints.

The three important were 1) God has ordained marriage to be between a man and a woman and that any sexual activity outside that union is sinful, 2) we are taught to be tolerant and accepting of others, but not of sin, 3) women play a great role in the gospel and the only path for a man to return to our heavenly father involves his wife.   These teachings were further strengthened in the second session.

Between sessions I prepared white bean chili and corn bread to take to the priesthood dinner.  As soon as the second session was over, I grabbed the corn bread and chili and made my way to the chapel.

The dinner seemed scarcely attended compared to previous years.  I enjoyed the company of my friends as we sampled all sorts of chili.  At the end, we had quite a bit left over.

During the priesthood session, I looked at my watch.  It was 8:50pm EDT as the congregation sang Hope of Israel.  We were not in the Conference Center where some 21,000 men sang this hymn; there was less than 100 of us.  Yet, around the world, there were hundreds of thousands men singing in unison.  Perhaps, there were even a few million.  I don’t know the exact count.  I do know how it made me feel as we sang,

Soon the battle will be over;
Ev’ry foe of truth be down.
Onward, onward, youth of Zion;
Thy reward the victor’s crown.

It came as a calming feeling that God is in control, that the evil of this world will be defeated, and soon, whether in this life or the next, we will reach the victor’s crown.

(follow this link to download the MP3 and hear the hymn as sung at conference:  http://media2.ldscdn.org/assets/general-conference/april-2013-general-conference/2013-04-3031-hope-of-israel-256k-eng.mp3?download=true )

Since When Did They Expire?

Since when did the 10 Commandments expire?

As a teenager I remember the malls, stores, gas stations, etc., largely being closed on Sundays. There were some restaurants open on Sundays, but for the most part, they were the only businesses open on Sunday. And, I’m told by friends my age and older, some states had “blue laws”, that required businesses to be closed on Sunday. (http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Blue+Laws) Although, I don’t agree with the concept behind laws that restrict behavior based on religious beliefs, I do think many business would close on Sunday if good Christians honored the Sabbath day…. but that’s a little off topic.

It seems that the Sabbath-day observance seemed to sneakily disappear except in Jewish quarters. (Many Jewish owned businesses are closed on holy days and the Sabbath. I very much respect them for this.) Jews and Christians both are supposed to keep the Ten Commandments.

Bit by bit, corruption has set in to society to the point where they are treated more like the Ten Suggestions than the Ten Commandments. So, I thought I’d list them as they are found in Exodus Chapter 20:3-17:

I. 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

II. 4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; 6 And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

III. 7 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

IV. 8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: 11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

V. 12 Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

VI. 13 Thou shalt not kill.

VII. 14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.

VIII. 15 Thou shalt not steal.

IX. 16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.

X. 17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor’s.

Like the Sabbath day observance, many Christians have thrown aside the 7th Commandment – Thou shalt not commit adultery (or anything like unto it). It wasn’t long ago when a couple were living together, but not married, people would say, “They are living in sin.” Homosexual acts were called sins against nature, and those acts, along with adultery were considered criminal.

In many ways, as a society, we have advanced in our civility towards each other. Racial bigotry has waned greatly since in the last generation. Yet, in other ways, be have become less civil. Television, movies and entertainment contain graphic images (both violent and sexual) that would not have been tolerated 30 years ago. As soon as someone speaks out against indecency, they are called bigots, haters (a word I loath), and are shunned on social media.

Entertainment also tries to justify the sin as a means to an end.  For example, a popular T.V. show, White Collar, is based on a con man and his criminal friends, helping the F.B.I. solve cases through breaking the law.  I’m sure many in their audience see it as entertainment and like the story of Robin Hood, when the day is over, they know Robin Hood was a criminal.  However, there are those who think the crime is an entitlement because someone was wronged.

Another show is Leverage.  High-tech modern Robin Hoods set out to right the wronged.  Laws are broken and the Leverage team gets away with things that should place them in prison.  In real life, anyone who believes in the Ten Commandments would agree both sides should be arrested and tried for their crimes.  (Thou shalt not steal.  Thou shalt not bear false witness.  Thou shalt not covet.)

One wrong doing never justifies another wrong doing.

Entertainment also bombards us with a false sense of love and security.  I would challenge anyone to watch a T.V. drama (including the two I have already mentioned), and find someone who epitomizes a good Christian.  We used to have a few of them on T.V., but that was back in the 60s.  Well, I take that back, Touched by an Angel, was a pretty decent show, and Blue Bloods shows a good Catholic family that prays together and holds to their beliefs.

Today, it seems that every show has to have someone who is outwardly gay, or a gay couple.  Two couples meeting for the first time end up having sex before the sunrises on the next morning, and people in the workplace are referred to as family and depicted as being more important that the character’s own family. (Thou shalt not commit adultery.  Honor thy father and thy mother.  Thou shalt not covet.)

There are also shows that justify murder.  The one that comes to mind is Burn Notice.  A burned CIA agent, his buddy Sam Axe, girlfriend and mom are out to find out who burned him as they leave a wake of dead bodies.  These are the heroes of the show?  (Thou shalt not kill.)

I believe intelligent adults can sift through this stuff and understand that much of what goes on in entertainment is wrong.  On the other side, there are young, impressionable children watching this stuff whose parents don’t care, whose parents do not teach them the commandments.  I worry about the kids who were raised that way, who are being raised that way, and who are raising their children that way.

The Ten Commandments are divided in to “do” and “don’t” commandments.  I do not believe that laws should be made to force the “do” commandments.  On the other hand, we have to have some governance over the “don’t” commandments.  Imagine how bad this world would get if it suddenly became legal to kill?

I think it is going to become harder and harder to be a good Christian.  Perhaps the best thing we can do is renew ourselves and vow to keep the commandments.