Who and What is the Happy Warrior

The Happy Warrior is the title of a poem... and yes, I love this poem. I do not wish to be mischaracterized, for the most part poetry is not my bag. I am not an afficionado of literature nor am I a metro-sexual (I despise that term) but a dear friend introduced me to this masterpiece of prose several years ago... it has provided no end of inspiration. The Happy Warrior by William Wordsworth outlines the qualities of a magnificent soul. I aspire to possess even one or two characteristics that "every man in arms should wish to be."

This blog is a representation, in conversational form, of my voyage to wrap my arms around the world in which Mr. Worsdworth's warrior finds happiness.

(Standing disclaimer: Luckily tests of spelling accuracy ended in 4th grade otherwise I would still be in Elementary School. Be forewarned, spelling errors ahead. I subscribe to the wisdom of a great man who said, "I have utmost disdain for a man who can only spell a word one way." -Benjamin Franklin)

Friday, March 30, 2012

The truth of Trayvon and the danger of the media

One of the most unfortunate -and ultimately, dangerous- ironies of the information age is the collapse of the news media.  We are living in George Orwells world of doublespeak.  It is impossible to place any confidence in the validity and integrity of news accounts.  Not only are assumptions, presuppositions and outright guesses presented as facts but these are counfounded with opinion and bias.  Finally, our world is saturated with information.  We simply cannot take it all in.  There are significant things happening in the Sudan, in Belgium, in Guatemala (not to mention Iran, Venezauela, North Korea, and China) and yet we never hear about them.  Here is a quick test, when is the last time an American media outlet spent even 30 seconds covering a heinous killing in the Sudan?  The point is, traditional media inevitably filters out 99% of the world and manufactures a very limited conception of reality.  In large measure we are blind.  We see what they want us to see  -our reality is shaped by their decisions.  We are reacting like puppets to the information strings they have tied to us:  these do not connect to our elbows and legs but to our eyes, our minds and our hearts.
Consider the current media-created situation centering around Trayvon Martin.  Does anyone really think the media (speaking of the major news media outlets in aggregate) has 90% of the relevant, accurate and complete information regarding the "facts"?  Does anyone really think they have 50% of the story?  25%?  I doubt (by virtue of some significant prior research on exactly this type of circumstance) they have a 10% understanding of what transpired... and yet their reporters and pundits are making claims of certainty.  Their reporting is drawing the attention of interest groups with preexisting agendas.  Their recklessness is dangerously stirring up supposition, misunderstanding and powerful emotions of hate.  

Keeping the Martin case in mind, do you not think there have been fifty events just as tragic and even more gruesome within the past week.  Other teens have been slain in manners more viscious.  Other innocent children have been brutally killed...  Why have we not heard of these?  Why have they been filtered out of existence?  They are no less horrific, no less insightful to the social ills of our day.  We know about Trayvon because the media has made a decision for us.  They have decided that we should focus on it and have cast it in the ugly light or racism.  To be sure, this is a joint effort since we are a willing public and consumers of the media's product. 

To the question:  does the Trayvon Martin death mean that the US is steeped in racism?  No.  We don't know enough of the facts to make a determination in this one case.  Beyond this it is not prudent or logical to generalize from one instance to society as a whole.  I GUARANTEE that in the same time that this case has been broadcast across America, there have been thousands of good deeds, small and large, by Whites to Blacks, by Blacks to Whites, by Hispanics to Whites, by Blacks to Hispanics, by Hispanics to Asians... shall I continue?  Why is the media not reporting this tremendous level of friendship and dencency?  Where are the headlines and ranting talk show hosts exploring this phenomenon?   The truth is friendship and racial harmony does not bleed and as such will never be on the news or motivate Al Sharpton to lead a demonstration.  The media has made the choice to create a reality that is built on the dramatic, on the exception.  It portrays this as the norm.  It is a false representation and a lie.  Do not beleive it.  God grant that we do not lose ourselves to the hysteria manufactured by the media and perpetrated by narrowminded and self-serving interest groups.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Griffin's latest mishap

Time for a fun break from seriousness and a peek into the craziness that is our home.  When Griffin was in the golden years of childhood and believed that superhero-hood was a legitimate career option we made a home movie where he starred as the man of steel himself, Superman.  Filming the final scene where he confronted the evil dog-turned-into-gorilla by a freak nuclear accident was somewhat challenging since he was afraid of the full body gorilla body suit we procured...  so much for the man of steel courage.
Well he and his Uncle Ben took up the film making trade once again this past weekend.  With the help of the Apple iPhone nad a very cool app, here is the result: