Many Americans probably recall the broad strokes of Abraham Lincoln’s 1865 assassination, Save Jerseyans, but few know that it happened, eerily, on Good Friday (which fell on April 14th that year).
It’s remembered as Black Easter:
Have you seen today’s “Google Doodle” for Good Friday 2014, Save Jerseyans?
Don’t adjust your monitors. That’s it. And it’s not exactly festive…
Google has special logos lined up for every obscure, liberal hero, fringe holiday and South American labor leader’s birthday but, to quote Uncle Junior of Sopranos fame, “jack s–t for Jesus.” In 2013, Google commemorated Easter, arguably the world’s most widely-commemorated religious holiday, by posting a doodle in honor of Marxist Cesar Chavez.
So much for “don’t be evil.”
If you want to know why I could never vote for a Ron Paul-type libertarian, Save Jerseyans, then read this exceedingly disturbing report out of a Russian militant-occupied town in Eastern Ukraine (via USA Today):
Emanuel Shechter, in Israel, told Ynet his friends in Donetsk sent him a copy of the leaflet through social media.
“They told me that masked men were waiting for Jewish people after the Passover eve prayer, handed them the flyer and told them to obey its instructions,” he said.
The leaflet begins, “Dear Ukraine citizens of Jewish nationality,” and states that all people of Jewish descent over 16 years old must report to the Commissioner for Nationalities in the Donetsk Regional Administration building and “register.”
What else can you say about people who refuse believe in something they can’t see but are also equally confident in declaring, with 100% certainly, that it doesn’t exist? Yup. It’s irrational to the say the least…
A little Holy Week humor served up with a heaping dose of common sense courtesy of comedian (and self-described conservative Christian) Brad Stine:
Remember the name “Sohail Mohammed” going forward, Save Jerseyans. Rightly or wrongly, the Indian-American Muslim serving as a New Jersey state trial judge is going to remain a hot topic for as long as Governor Chris Christie remains a 2016 GOP primary contender.
I’d submit “wrongly.” There isn’t much legitimate reason for concern. None, actually. Criticism of Judge Mohammed centers around the fact that, in private practice, he defended some pretty shady people in the aftermath of 9/11. Critics, many of whom love quoting their pocket constitutions, conveniently (and ironically) forget the Sixth Amendment’s right to assistance of counsel for criminal defendants.
Most importantly, Mohammed in his capacity as a family court jurist hasn’t issued any rulings which suggest that he’d ever substitute fealty to the Constitution and state law for Sharia.
But good luck relying on facts and logic, folks, when the scrutinized party’s patron is a candidate for president…
I remember, as a kindergarten student, knowing that Saddam Hussein was a bad man and that it was right and just that we were going to invade Iraq: Operation Desert Shield turning into Operation Desert Storm was a good thing.
I remember making several phone calls to college buddies when Saddam Hussein was captured during operation Red Dawn in 2003. We laughed, we guffawed, we talked about it as an early Christmas present. This was what sophomores in college, deeply engaged in thinking and talking about foreign policy did.
I remember hearing that we had caught and killed Osama Bid Laden. I jumped out of my chair as if to cheer, but the joy got caught in my throat, replaced by the realization that celebration over the death of another is quickly followed by a feeling significantly less pleasant than joy, though no less poignant.
So strong is this tradition that I can honestly say that in my lifetime I’ve never spent a Christmas Eve without a variety of fish dishes spread before me. This is a hallowed custom that is passed from one generation to another.
To begin with you must have seven fish selections on the table.
Why seven? Seven is a very important number. It stands for the seven sacraments of the Catholic Church. The seven days of creation. In Biblical numerology, seven is a number of perfection.
And fish is the featured dish because Italians have customarily abstained from eating meat on Christmas Eve. In fact, I do believe that for a long time the Catholic church prohibited the eating of meat the day before Christmas, This is the Christmas vigil.
There is no set menu for this feast.
But here are some of the fishes that are traditionally used: calamari (squid); scungilli [skuhn-GEE-lee] (conch); baccala [bah-kah-LAH] (dry, salt cod); shrimp; clams, usually served with pasta; mussels; snapper, trout, tuna or salmon.
We have adapted this menu over the years and updated it somewhat.
All the same, if you’re searching online for a preview of how he might translate to a more religious conservative audience than the Garden State Governor usually addresses on home turf, then you might find a few clues in his Wednesday afternoon excerpted remarks at a Passaic County drug court graduation ceremony:
Pope Francis’s criticism of capitalism continues to be a hot topic through the first half of the Christmas season, Save Jerseyans, although as a friend pointed out to me earlier today, the Holy Father’s distrust of free markets isn’t anything new for Catholic hierarchy.
Francis is a good man with plenty to teach us. Economics isn’t one of those things. His latest literary offering wasn’t wrong: “the excluded are still waiting,” especially in his poverty-stricken native Argentina, but his home country is a model of socialism, not “trickle-down” capitalism. How can he not know that?
My humble suggestion: the His Holiness should seriously consider with whom he’s siding on the economic front. He can start by signing up for the email list of U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-Twitter).
“[...] the Supreme Court could decide that for-profit employers can limit access to birth control by constraining insurance options available to their employees,” Booker said in a Saturday morning email blast referring, of course, to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to consider an Obamacare contraception mandate challenge. “Allowing employers to inject themselves into these intensely personal decisions would be a huge step backward.”
Mary Anastasia O’Grady has analyzed all this quite objectively in the Wall Street Journal. Here’s part of what she has to say:
In the document released last week he [Pope Francis] admonished those who defend “trickle-down theories, which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world.” There is no empirical evidence for this, he wrote. It is instead “a crude and naive trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system.”
Holiday commercials are running on TV, Christmas tree lot signs are springing up around town, the retail stores are hanging festive decorations and your local soft rock radio station is threatening to begin looping “All I Want for Christmas” 24/7 a full 1 1/2 weeks before Thanksgiving.
Welcome to the Holiday Season, 2013 edition.
The modern American Christmas wouldn’t be complete without a very public debate over whether there’s a “War on Christmas” afoot. It’s one theater of the larger “culture war” that’s been waged in our country, in varying degrees of intensity, since the 1960′s. Amazingly, just to show you how contentious it can get, the combatants can’t even stipulate whether the “war” even exists or if it’s simply a figment of conservative talk show hosts’ very active imaginations. It’s certainly real enough to generate a healthy profit; Sarah Palin is helping stir the pot with her new book, Good Tidings and Great Joy: Protecting the Heart of Christmas, which comes complete with a “Christmoose Chili” recipe. Yummy.
My take? Yes, Virginia, there is a sector of our society that is radically secular and would like to see all religion – but particularly Christianity – erased from the public square. I’d nevertheless like to clear up a few key misconceptions before the sugar plums and fairies get carried away and ruin another perfectly good season…
Civilian Catholic priests employed by the federal government have been forbidden by the Obama administration from performing their ministries with military personnel during the government shutdown and are subject to arrest even if they do so voluntarily, according to John Schlageter, the General Counsel of the Archdioceses for Military Services, USA.
This morning, the House of Representatives passed a resolution, 400-1, urging Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel to allow continued performance of religious services on military installations during the government shutdown.
Pope Francis is in the news for his decidedly different approach to social issues than his predecessors, Save Jerseyans, but the recently-minted Supreme Pontiff’s penchant for rocking the boat isn’t limited to public policy debates and long-fought culture wars.
He’s shaking stuff up in the Garden State, too.
According to the popular Catholic blog Whispers in the Loggia, on Tuesday morning in Rome, Francis appointed Bishop Bernard Hebda as coadjutor-archbishop of Newark.
Who? What? Lucky for you I attended Catholic schools! Hebda is 54 years old and currently serves a diocese in Michigan. This move puts him in line to succeed the current Bishop of Newark, 72 year-old Archbishop John Myers. But this move is more significant than simply establishing a line of succession…
– Benjamin Franklin
A rather surprising quote, coming from the man who once wrote in Poor Richard’s Almanac that “early to bed and early to rise; makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.”
But like most of us, Franklin’s life was often at contradiction with itself. We obey (usually) our parents, listen (again, usually) to our teachers, and then as adults develop our own philosophy of life. If we are Christians, that philosophy is deeply rooted in Scripture and biblical truth.
However, what happens when we act in opposition to our very own philosophy of life? Does that mean that we are hypocrites? In Franklin’s case, does that make his admonition about the value of getting an early start to the day any less true?
One of this week’s most remarkable stories has absolutely nothing to do with politics, although this story does originate from one of America’s most politically-competitive states.
Learn about the miracle in Missouri in the off chance that you missed it:
“Pray out loud,” Save Jerseyans. It works!