Posted by: Democratic Thinker | September 2, 2011

Labor Day

Roughnecks in the Oklahoma Oil-Patch.

 

LABOR.

—————

HO! ye who at the anvil toil
And strike the sounding blow,
Where from the burning iron’s breast,
The sparks fly to and fro,
While answering to the hammer’s ring,
And fire’s intenser glow,—
Oh! while ye feel ‘tis hard to toil
And sweat the long day through,
Remember it is harder still
To have no work to do!

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 28, 2014

Power Plant Men Show Their True Colors

Commentary

 
 
The Plant Electrician, at Power Plant Men, remarks upon the people he worked with.

 


I suppose I could go down a list of times where power plant men did something nice for me. I probably would just be describing a regular day at work with this bunch of grubby guys in tee shirts and jeans and work boots. This post would become long and monotonous pretty fast. So, let me just focus on one example that illustrates what I’m talking about.


 

 

Power Plant Men Show Their True Colors — Repost

By Plant Electrician on August 27, 2014

Originally posted August 23, 2013:

If you happened to stop some Saturday evening at the old gas station just north of the Power Plant in North Central Oklahoma back in the late 70’s around supper time, you might run into a group of grubby men that looked like they had fallen into a coal bin.  They might look like they had been swimming in a batch of coal dust and sweat.  Dark hair greasy with the grime of the day.  If you took a closer look and observed their handkerchief after it had been used, you would have seen the black slime soaking through.  The pores in their skin darkened by the black dust they had been wading through.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 27, 2014

The Virginia Petition

American Papers

 
 
In 1772, just prior to the American Revolution, Virginia petitions George III to allow them to halt the slave trade to the colony.




 

The VIRGINIA PETITION.

—————

 

 

 

 

MR Harrison reported from the Committee appointed* upon Friday, the twentieth Day of last Month, to draw up an Address to be presented to his Majesty, that the Committee had drawn up an Address accordingly, which they had directed him to report to the House; and he read the same in his Place, and afterwards delivered it in at the Clerk’s Table; where the same was read, and is as followeth, viz.

Most Gracious Sovereign,

We, your Majesty’s dutiful and loyal Subjects, the Burgesses of Virginia, now met in General Assembly, beg Leave, with all Humility, to approach your Royal Presence.

The many Instances of your Majesty’s benevolent Intentions and most gracious Disposition to promote the Prosperity and Happiness of your Subjects in the Colonies, encourage us to look up to the Throne, and implore your Majesty’s paternal Assistance in averting a Calamity of a most alarming Nature.

The Importation of Slaves into the Colonies from the Coast of Africa hath long been considered as a Trade of great Inhumanity, and, under its present Encouragement, we have too much Reason to fear will endanger the very Existance of your Majesty’s American Dominions.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 26, 2014

Weekly Story: Franklin—On Whitefield

Weekly Story

 
Benjamin Franklin relates the story of George Whitefield in America.


Some of Mr. Whitefield’s enemies affected to suppose that he would apply these collections to his own private emolument; but I, who was intimately acquainted with him, being employed in printing his Sermons and Journals, never had the least suspicion of his integrity; but am to this day decidedly of opinion, that he was in all his conduct a perfectly honest man; and methinks my testimony in his favour ought to have the more weight, as we had no religious connexion. He us’d, indeed, sometimes, to pray for my conversion, but never had the satisfaction of believing that his prayers were heard. Ours was a mere civil friendship, sincere on both sides, and lasted to his death.


 

 

George Whitefied in America.

—————

IN 1739, arrived among us from Ireland the Reverend Mr. Whitefield, who had made himself remarkable there as an itinerant preacher. He was at first permitted to preach in some of our churches; but the clergy, taking a dislike to him, soon refus’d him their pulpits, and he was oblig’d to preach in the fields. The multitudes of all sects and denominations that attended his sermons were enormous, and it was a matter of speculation to me, who was one of the number, to observe the extraordinary influence of his oratory on his hearers, and how much they admir’d and respected him, notwithstanding his common abuse of them, by assuring them, they were naturally half beasts and half devils. It was wonderful to see the change soon made in the manners of our inhabitants. From being thoughtless or indifferent about religion, it seemed as if all the world were growing religious, so that one could not walk thro’ the town in an evening without hearing psalms sung in different families of every street.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 22, 2014

Justice Joseph Story—On the Separation of Church and State

Foundations of the United States Constitution

In 1833, Joseph Story—selected for the Supreme Court by James Madison in 1811—publishes a three volume commentary on the United States Constitution. Included is a commentary on the Bill of Rights.


Now, there will probably be found few persons in this, or any other Christian country, who would deliberately contend, that it was unreasonable, or unjust to foster and encourage the Christian religion generally, as a matter of sound policy, as well as of revealed truth.

COMMENTARIES
OF THE
CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES.

—————

VOLUME III.
CHAP. XLIV.

§ 1863. Let us now enter upon the consideration of the amendments, which, it will be found, principally regard subjects properly belonging to a bill of rights.

§ 1864. The first is, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition government for a redress of grievances.”

§ 1865. And first, the prohibition of any establishment of religion, and the freedom of religious opinion and worship.

How far any government has a right to interfere in matters touching religion, has been a subject much discussed by writers upon public and political law. The right and the duty of the interference of government, in matters of religion, have been maintained by many distinguished authors, as well those, who were the warmest advocates of free governments, as those, who were attached to governments of a more arbitrary character.1 Indeed, the right of a society or government to interfere in matters of religion will hardly be contested by any persons, who believe that piety, religion, and morality are intimately connected with the well being of the state, and indispensable to the administration of civil justice. The promulgation of the great doctrines of religion, the being, and attributes, and providence of one Almighty God; the responsibility to him for all our actions, founded upon moral freedom and accountability; a future state of rewards and punishments; the cultivation of all the personal, social, and benevolent virtues;—these never can be a matter of indifference in any well ordered community.2 It is, indeed, difficult to conceive, how any civilized society can well exist without them. And at all events, it is impossible for those, who believe in the truth of Christianity, as a divine revelation, to doubt, that it is the especial duty of government to foster, and encourage it among all the citizens and subjects. This is a point wholly distinct from that of the right of private judgment in matters of religion, and of the freedom of public worship according to the dictates of one’s conscience.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 19, 2014

Justice

Considerations by the Way

 
 
The first children’s picture book is published in 1658—in Latin and German.


We shall not presume to anticipate the judgment of our fellow-citizens throughout the Union on these important letters, by interposing any comments of our own.—Four Letters on the Important Subject of Government, 1802.


 

 

Justice. CXVI. Justitia.

—————

JUSTICE, 1. is painted, sitting on a square stone, 2. for she out to be immoveable; with hood-winked eyes, 3. that she may not respect persons; stopping the left ear, 4. to be reserved for the other party;

Holding in her Right Hand a Sword, 5. and a Bridle, 6. to punish and restrain evil men;

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 16, 2014

Weekly Story: Julia A. Carney & Little Things

Weekly Story

 
Julia A. Fletcher—taking a shorthand class at Tremont Temple in Boston—writes four lines of verse as a class project. After school, she completes the poem and reads it to her class the following Sunday.


… no sooner had it appeared than it was copied by papers throughout the country, and it was not long before it had made its way into many homes. Later the next to the last line of the last stanza was changed to read “Make our earth an Eden,” as it now stands in the poem.—Little Chronicle.


 

 

Little Things.

—————

IN 1845, when studying phonography in Andrews & Boyle’s class, Boston, she [Julia A. Carney, née Fletcher] was asked to give an impromptu exercise on the black-board. Only ten minutes were allowed, and in that time she wrote the first verse of “Little Things.” It has been a favorite of children in Sunday-school exhibitions from that time on, and has been recited and sung thousands of times. It was first published in our Sunday-school paper, now called the “Myrtle.”


Julia A. Carney.

LITTLE drops of water,
Little grains of sand,
Make the mighty ocean,
And the pleasant land.

So the little moments.
Humble though they be,
Make the mighty ages
Of Eternity.

So our little errors
Lead the soul away
From the path of virtue,
Far in sin to stray.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 9, 2014

Weekly Story: Shall We Gather

Weekly Story

 
Ira Sankey relates the story told him of an American missionary regarding one of Robert Lowry’s hymns.


I hesitated a moment, and looked around. The gleam on the yellow water of the Nile, as the western rays slanted down, caught my eye and suggested the river the streams of which shall make glad the city of God. I began to sing in a low voice the gospel hymn, ‘Shall we gather at the river?’


 

Shall We Gather?

—————

 

An American lady writing from Cairo, who was allowed to visit the military hospital soon after some wounded men had been brought in from a skirmish, says:

THE three hours we could stay were full of work for heart and hand. One young soldier from a Highland regiment especially excited my interest. He had lost a limb, and the doctor said he could not live through the night. I stopped at his side to see whether there was anything that I could do for him. He lay with closed eyes; and as his lips moved I caught the words, ‘Mother, mother.’ I dipped my handkerchief in a basin of iced water, and bathed his forehead where the fever flushes burned.

‘Oh, that is good!’ he said, opening his eyes. Seeing me bending over him, he caught my hand and kissed it. ‘Thank you, lady,’ he said; ‘it ‘minds me o’ mother.’

I asked him if I could write to his mother. No, he said; the surgeon had promised to write ; but could I, would I, sing to him? I hesitated a moment, and looked around. The gleam on the yellow water of the Nile, as the western rays slanted down, caught my eye and suggested the river the streams of which shall make glad the city of God. I began to sing in a low voice the gospel hymn, ‘Shall we gather at the river?’ Eager heads were raised around us to listen more intently, while bass and tenor voices, weak and tremulous, came in on the chorus,—

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | August 2, 2014

Washington—To General Lafayette (December 25, 1798)

American Correspondence

 
As war with France threatens, Washington writes to Lafayette concerning the situations in American and Europe.


I wish well to all nations and to all men. My politics are plain and simple. I think every nation has a Right to establish that form of Government under which It conceives It shall live most happy; provided it infracts no Right or is not dangerous to others. And that no Governments ought to interfere with the internal concerns of Another, except for the security of what is due to themselves.

TO GENERAL LAFAYETTE.

—————

—Political situation in the United States—His own efforts to prevent a breach with France—France has been deceived by an American faction—The United States prepared for a fair negotiation—Peace not favored because of Great Britain—His re-appearance in a public station—Right of self-government—Social—

—————

MOUNT VERNON, December 25, 1798.

MY DEAR SIR,

I AM indebted to you for the following letters, dated the 6th of Octr. and 20th of Decr. of the last year. And 26th. of April, 20th. of May, 20th. of August and 5th. of Septr. in the present. If more have been written they have fallen into other hands, or miscarried on their passage.

Convinced as you must be of the fact, it wd. be a mere waste of time to assure you of the sincere and heartfelt pleasure I derived from finding by the above letters, that you had not only regained your liberty; but were in the enjoyment of better health than could have been expected from your long and rigorous confinement; and that madame La Fayette and the young ladies were able to Survive it attall. On these desirable events I can add with truth, that amongst your numerous friends none can offer his congratulations with more warmth, or who prays more sincerely for the perfect restoration of your ladies health, than I do.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | July 31, 2014

Public Service Notice: Neighborhood Watch

Public Service Notice

 
 
If you would have your business done, go; if not send.—Father Abraham’s Advice.
 
 


Since 1972, the USAonWatch-Neighborhood Watch Program (housed within the National Sheriffs’ Association) has worked to unite law enforcement agencies, private organizations, and individual citizens in a nation-wide effort to reduce crime and improve local communities. The success of the program has established Neighborhood Watch as the nation’s premier crime prevention and community mobilization program. Visible signs of the program are seen throughout America on street signs, window decals, community block parties and service projects.

About National Neigborhood Watch

Neighborhood Watch is undoubtedly one of the oldest and most well-known crime prevention programs in history. While the modern day concept of program rose to prominence in the late 1960s in response to an increasing burglary rate, the roots of Neighborhood Watch can actually be traced all the way back to the days of Colonial settlements, when night watchmen patrolled the streets. The modern version of the Neighborhood Watch-USAonWatch Program was developed as a result of the multiple requests from sheriffs and police chiefs around the country who were looking for a crime prevention program that would incorporate citizen involvement and address the increasing number of burglaries taking place, especially in rural and suburban areas. In 1972, the National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA) took the concept a step further by seeking funding to make the program a national initiative. Thanks to a grant from the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration, the National Neighborhood Watch Program was started.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | July 27, 2014

The History of Susanna

Considerations by the Way

 
 
A young woman asks for help.


We shall not presume to anticipate the judgment of our fellow-citizens throughout the Union on these important letters, by interposing any comments of our own.—Four Letters on the Important Subject of Government, 1802.


 

 

The History of Susanna.

—————

THERE dwelt a man in Babylon, called Joacim:

And he took a wife, whose name was Susanna, the daughter of Chelcias, a very fair woman, and one that feared the Lord.

Her parents also were righteous, and taught their daughter according to the law of Moses.

Now Joacim was a great rich man, and had a fair garden joining unto his house: and to him resorted the Jews; because he was more honourable than all others.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | July 25, 2014

First Continental Congress—Articles of Association

Background of the American Revolution

 
In 1774, delegates from the American Colonies meet in congress at Philadelphia to discuss what to do about several laws Britain imposed on them. As articulated by their Declaration of Rights, they agree to an association of colonies—subsequently ratified by the Colonial Legislatures.

And we do solemnly bind ourselves and our constituents, under the ties aforesaid, to adhere to this association …

The Association of the American Congress

—————

THURSDAY, October 20, 1774.

The association being copied, was read and signed at the table, and is as follows:

WE, his majesty’s most loyal subjects, the delegates of the several colonies of New-Hampshire, Massachusetts-Bay, Rhode-Island, Connecticut, New-York, New-Jersey, Pennsylvania, the three lower counties of New-Castle, Kent and Sussex, on Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North-Carolina, and South-Carolina, deputed to represent them in a continental Congress, held in the city of Philadelphia, on the 5th day of September, 1774, avowing our allegiance to his majesty, our affection and regard for our fellow-subjects in Great-Britain and elsewhere, affected with the deepest anxiety, and most alarming apprehensions, at those grievances and distresses, with which his majesty’s American subjects are oppressed; and having taken under our most serious deliberation, the state of the whole continent, find, that the present unhappy situation of our affairs is occasioned by a ruinous system of colony administration, adopted by the British ministry about the year 1768, evidently calculated for enslaving these colonies, and, with them, the British empire. In prosecution of which system, various acts of parliament have been passed, for raising a revenue in America, for depriving the American subjects, in many instances, of the constitutional trial by jury, exposing their lives to danger, by directing a new and illegal trial beyond the seas, for crimes alleged to have been committed in America: and in prosecution of the same system, several late, cruel, and oppressive acts have been passed, respecting the town of Boston and the Massachusetts-Bay, and also an act for extending the province of Quebec, so as to border on the western frontiers of these colonies, establishing an arbitrary government therein, and discouraging the settlement of British subjects in that wide extended country; thus, by the influence of civil principles and ancient prejudices, to dispose the inhabitants to act with hostility against the free Protestant colonies, whenever a wicked ministry shall chuse to direct them.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | July 24, 2014

First Continental Congress—Declaration of Rights

Background of the American Revolution

 
In 1774, delegates from the American Colonies meet in congress at Philadelphia to discuss what to do about several laws Britain imposed on them. In October they address the violations of their rights as British citizens and declare the intent of the colonies to act in association with each other.

… since the close of the last war, the British parliament, claiming a power of right, to bind the people of America by statutes in all cases whatsoever, hath, in some acts, expressly imposed taxes on them, and in others, under various pretences, but in fact for the purpose of raising a revenue, hath imposed rates and duties payable in these colonies, established a board of commissioners, with unconstitutional powers, and extended the Jurisdiction of courts of admiralty, not only for collecting the said duties, but for the trial of causes merely arising within the body of a county.

The Declaration of Rights.

—————

FRIDAY, October 14, 1774.

The Congress met according to adjournment, and resuming the consideration of the subject under debate—made the following declaration and resolves:

WHEREAS, since the close of the last war, the British parliament, claiming a power of right, to bind the people of America by statutes in all cases whatsoever, hath, in some acts, expressly imposed taxes on them, and in others, under various pretences, but in fact for the purpose of raising a revenue, hath imposed rates and duties payable in these colonies, established a board of commissioners, with unconstitutional powers, and extended the Jurisdiction of courts of admiralty, not only for collecting the said duties, but for the trial of causes merely arising within the body of a county.

And whereas, in consequence of other statutes, judges, who before held only estates at will in their offices, have been made dependant on the crown alone for their salaries, and standing armies kept in times of peace: And whereas it has lately been resolved in parliament, that by force of a statute, made in the thirty-fifth year of the reign of king Henry the eighth, colonists may be transported to England, and tried there upon accusations for treasons, and misprisions, or concealments of treasons committed in the colonies, and by a late statute, such trials have been directed in cases therein mentioned.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | July 21, 2014

Menasseh Ben Israel—The Humble Address

Background of the American Revolution

 
No one can understand the foundations of the American nation without understanding the English Civil War from a century earlier. In September 1655, Manesseh ben Israel—with Cromwell’s support—publishes a petition requesting the Jews be allowed to return to England.

Wherefore I humbly entreat your Highnesse, that you would with a gracious eye have regard unto us, and our Petition, and grant unto us, as you have done unto others, free exercise of our Religion, that we may have our Synagogues, and keep our own publick worship, …

TO
His Highnesse the Lord PROTECTOR
OF THE
Common-wealth of ENGLAND,
SCOTLAND, and IRELAND.

—————

The Humble Address of Menasseh Ben Israel, a Divine and Doctor of Physick, in Behalf of the Jewish Nation.

GIVE me leave, at such a juncture of time, to speak to your Highnesse, in a style and manner fitting to us Jewes and our condition. It is a thing most certaine, that the great God of Israel, Creator of Heaven and Earth, doth give and take away Dominions and Empires, according to his owne pleasure; exalting some, and overthrowing others: who, seeing he hath the hearts of Kings in his hand, he easily moves them whithersoever himselfe pleaseth, to put in execution his Divine Commands. This, my Lord, appeares most evidently out of those words of Daniel, where he, rendring thanks unto God, for revealing unto him that prodigious Dreame of Nebuchadnezar, doth say: Thou that removest Kings, and sets up Kings. And else-where, To the end the living might know, that the Highest hath dominion in Mans Kingdome, and giveth the fame to whom he please. Of the very same minde are the Thalmudists likewise, affirming that a good Government, or Governor, is a Heavenly Gift, and that there is no Governor, but is first called by God unto that dignity: and this they prove from that passage of Exodus: Behold I have called Bazalèl by name, &c. all things being governed by Divine Providence, God dispensing rewards unto Vertues, and punishment unto Vices, according to his owne good Will. Read More…

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