Give An Inch ~ They Take A Mile  

Posted by Stan Harrington

Prior to reading this posting, I would recommend that you read the previous posting on this site, dated 4/23/2010.

The Military Religious Foundation was the group that applied political pressure to the Department of Defense, in particular the U.S. Army to cancel the invitation of Evangelist Franklin Graham as the guest speaker at National Prayer Day ceremonies held at the Pentagon on May 6, 2010. Unfortunately, the U.S. Army or higher authority yielded to the pressure and canceled the appearance of Franklin Graham.

Today, in Denver, Colorado this same group, The Military Religious Freedom Foundation, is applying the pressure to have the above symbol removed and changed. This is the military emblem of Evans Army Community Hospital at Fort Carson, Colorado. The motto "pro deo et humanitate" means "For God and Humanity". "The cross, which has a pointed base is both an emblem of mercy and a symbol dating to the Middle Ages, when pilgrims carried a cross with a spiked base to mark the site of a camp."

Mikey Weinstein, President of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation said "that's a reference to the Crusades and could embolden U.S. enemies who want to portray the war on terror as a Christian war on Islam."

I really did not want to get into this "dog fight", but I am tiring rapidly of the daily onslaughts of America by radicals that are pursuing their personal agenda against our foundation. It is safe to assume, eventually they will get around to applying pressure to the U.S. Navy.

The U.S. Flag Code provides that "No other flag or pennant should be placed above or, if on the same level, to the right of the flag of the United States of America, except during church services conducted by naval chaplains at sea, the church pennant may be flown above the flag during church services for the personnel of the Navy." In 1975, this code was amended to also allow the "Jewish Pennant" the same honor.

U.S. Navy Church Pennant

I would guess that eventually this same group will want to remove all of the "Red Crosses" from the helmets of our military medical personnel.

God vs Politics  

Posted by Stan Harrington

In front of our National Flag and the flag of the U.S. Navy, I took the following oath five times in the span of twenty years of Naval service. Years, that I am very proud of and hold no regrets for making the U.S. Navy a career decision.

"I, Stanley Harrington, swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States, and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God."

The President of the United States and each of our elected officials take a similar Oath, the "Oath of Office" when assuming the elected office to represent the citizens of our great country. The operative phase in both of these Oaths is "So Help Me God".

I am an American and I am tired of the constant attack by the minority of the population on the right to believe in the existence of God and even the use of the name of God. I am tired of the term "political correctness". I am tired of the constant barrage from those trying to remove the word, "God" from all facets of our life including our Pledge of Allegiance and Christmas.

It disturbs me that today, the one Department in our Government, that is suppose to remain free of "political correctness" has swayed and broken to the demands of the minority. The Department of Defense, in particular the U.S. Army.

Evangelist Billy Graham was known throughout the world as a spiritual leader, his Christian messages brought hope and light to millions of people of all religions around the world. He was the spiritual advisory to all the Presidents from Harry Truman to George W. Bush, with the exception of John F. Kennedy. President Ronald Reagan honored him with the awarding of the Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nations highest civilian honor. President Bill Clinton and Senator Bob Dole also bestowed the Congressional Gold Medal on him for his work, not only spiritually but also for humanitarian efforts. He was bestowed the honor of Honorary Knighthood Commander by the British Empire.

His son, Franklin Graham, followed in his fathers footsteps as an Evangelist. Franklin Graham was invited by the U.S. Army to speak at the Pentagon on National Prayer Day, May 6, 2010. A group, Military Religious Freedom Foundation, vowed to seek a restraining order against National Prayer Day if it were "polluted by someone as hideously Islamophobic as Franklin Graham." In 2001, following 9/11 Graham wrote in an op-ed piece, that he does not believe Muslims are evil, but he objects to the treatment of women in Muslim countries and Islam's "persecution or elimination" of other religions.

Today, the U.S. Army withdrew their invitation to Franklin Graham as the speaker for National Prayer Day. Although, Colonel Tim Collins is the Army spokesman, I doubt that as a Colonel, this decision was made by him but from someone else in the Chain of Command extending from Colonel Collins to the Commander In Chief.

In a statement following the announcement, Franklin Graham stated, "I want to express my strong support for the United States military and all our troops. I will continue to pray that God will give them guidance, wisdom, and protection as they serve this great country".

Franklin Graham has a son, his name is Colonel Kevin Graham, a member and graduate of the long gray line, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He is serving his fourth tour of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq, the recipient of several medals including the Purple Heart for wounds suffered in combat. May God be with him and to all those that serve their country.

Research Is Good  

Posted by Stan Harrington

Since January, I have been spending countless hours of researching a trip that I am planning for the Fall of 2010. I have a defined "goal" to achieve during this trip. I have traced and then re-traced my proposed route several times. Just when I am satisfied with my route, in my research I discover something "new" and once again have to make an adjustment.

I have always loved "rocks", needless to say one of my favorite places to visit is the canyon lands of Utah. Even if you do not like "rocks", the formations in this area will leave you breathless. I have been through this area several times, each time it is exciting as the previous trips. This area of Utah is not small, half the state is encompassed by these rock formations. Just a trip through this area is well worth spending several days enjoying the warmth of fall and the colors of the various rock formations

However, my research revealed something that I did not know about this area. One of many objectives of this trip is to photograph a Desert Big Horn Ram. I have been fortunate to photograph the Dall Ram, Stone Ram, and the Rocky Mountain Big Horn Ram, but the Desert Ram has eluded my lense. I was concentrating my research to Arizona and Nevada for this particular specie of sheep.

I was not aware that the range of the Desert Big Horn Sheep included portions of Utah, primarily in the "Canyonlands". I was delighted to discover that one of the larger concentrations of Desert Bighorn Sheep was in an area of Utah that is less than 250 miles from the community of my birth in Western Colorado.

How fortunate, that I will be in this area at the commencement of the "rut", the time of the year that the Rams will butt a few heads to gain dominance of the herd. The fall season of the year, spending a few days admiring the "rock formations", and the potential to see Desert Big Horn Sheep in this environment. Does it get any better?

However, I do have a "back up plan" my route will still take me through Arizona and Nevada in search of this elusive specie of wild sheep. I will not return to Alaska until the mission is accomplished.

Watch Out For Wildlife  

Posted by Stan Harrington

Continuing to do some research for my "Bucket List Photo Trek" trip this next fall. My route will take me through northern Wyoming from east to west. This will drop me into the northern portion of Yellowstone National Park. After making the trip through Yellowstone, I will exit into the Grand Teton National Park.

Leaving the Grand Tetons in my rear view mirror, I will drive southeast across Wyoming to get some Pronghorn Antelope pictures. This route will intersect with the highway leading into Rocky Mountain National Park in Northern, Colorado to get some elk pictures. The route through Wyoming will take me through the community of Lander, Wyoming. This evening, while doing some research on Rocky Mountain Big Horn sheep, I came across the linked video.

It is on my route, I can only hope I will be fortunate to have a "close encounter", I would not mind a few dents in my Ford F-150.

Character Is A Big Deal  

Posted by Stan Harrington

In recent days, President Barack Obama signed the Health Reform Bill into law. Typically a large "dog and pony" show was staged for this historical moment. Vice President Joe Biden was given the honor of introducing the President. Following his introduction, he hugged the President and whispered in his ear "this is a big f_ _ _ _ _ _ deal". However, he forgot that the microphone was still hot and it broadcast his words around the world. The majority of the news media made light of the remark by simply stating that the Vice President made another 'gaff" and dismissed it. Later, when the President was ask about the "gaff", he laughed it off. He later had a tee shirt made up with the gaff and presented it to the Vice President.

Over the years, I have watched the "F" word become a commonly used word for both males, females, and our young people. I must admit, I have a very tough time with the wide usage of the word. Presumably because I was reared in a generation that this word was not used in mixed company. This word was never spoken by a girl, woman, and more importantly a lady. Kids, well we had better not even think of the word.

In later years, I grew up in the U.S.Navy, we, as sailors were known for our foul language, however, the "F" word was never used in mixed company out of respect. Into the early 1980's, if you wanted to get a good "butt kicking" all you had to do is drop the word in a bar or dance when a lady was present. There was always a tough "Ole" cowboy that would gladly do the honors for you or a grizzled old Navy Chief that would set you straight if it was a Navy bar.

Today, it is part of the vocabulary for both male and female in mixed company and used extensively by our younger generation. However, to see it uttered by the Vice President and laughed about by the President of the United States makes it questionable about their character.

President Obama has went out of his way to be recorded into history comparing him to President Abraham Lincoln. How would history have recorded President Lincoln if during his Gettysburg Address, if he would have uttered the words "this is a big f_ _ _ _ _ _ deal"?

If making a joke about the tasteless remark was not enough, the President then decides to take advantage of the situation. No doubt, he intends to make a few campaign bucks but his basic motive is to garnish enough votes to get re-elected. He had the young voters in his pocket last election because he promise "Change" this next time around, he is playing to their language. "Wow, if the President is cool enough to use the "F" word, I will vote for him".

This is the link the Presidents web site. Visit the site and see all the merchandise that he is hustling as if he were some type of Chicago street vendor.

It appears that this was not just a joke to him but an opportunity. It is evident that "BFD" is important to him as it is emblazoned on several items, including
This ten dollar T-shirt is for sale on his web site for $25.00 plus shipping. I am sure the past Presidents, especially Abraham Lincoln, who was a great orator without a teleprompter, would be so very proud of President Obama.

ADDENDUM 4/2/2010 0543

Curious, I paid a visit to the Democrat Party web site. The headline on the Home Page caught my attention since it dealt with the title of this posting, "Character". The quote reads: "THIS IS NOT ONLY ABOUT THE COST OF OUR HEALTH CARE BUT THE CHARACTER OF OUR COUNTRY", President Barack Obama.

They also have a mini warehouse of "BFD" gift items and others that they did not leave anything to the imagination. "This Is A Big F _ _ _ _ _ _ Deal. They also have a selection of the BFD T shirt, autographed by President Obama.

The item that caught my attention was this "Organizing For America" Blanket.
The big headline title for this product is:

Organizing For America Fleece Blanket

At least they are honest, they are "Fleecing America"