News

 
Egyptian Streets reports that Pope Tawadros will travel to Armenia to participate in events marking the centennial of the Armenian genocide.

 


Following Pope Francis’ statement, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned him not to make similar statements.

Egyptian Streets.


Coptic Pope Tawadros II To Participate In Events Marking 100 Years Since Armenian Genocide

 
April 17, 2015

Photo: EPA


 

Coptic Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria, Egypt has announced plans to travel to Armenia to participate in events marking the centennial since the Armenian genocide.

Purported by Turkey’s former Ottoman government, the genocide saw 1.5 million Armenians systematically killed by 1915. The Pope’s statement came amid current tension between Egypt and Turkey that developed after Turkey expressed disapproval of the ousting of Former President Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

While Armenians do not typically follow the Coptic Church, they comprise a separate branch of Orthodox Christianity that observes a similar calendar and traditions. Pope Tawadros II stated that he will be participating in commemoration events in Armenia, in addition to visiting Coptic communities in Europe in May.

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Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 17, 2015

The Battle of Lexington

The American Revolution

 
Isiah Thomas, for the Massachusetts Spy, publishes an account of the Battle of Lexington.


We have pleasure to say, that notwithstanding the highest provocations given by the enemy, not one influence of cruelty, that we have heard of, was committed by our Militia; but, listening to the merciful dictates of the Christian religion, they “breathed higher sentiments of humanity.”

The Battle of Lexington.

—————

 

Massachusetts Spy Headpiece.

 

WORCESTER, May 3.

 

Isaiah Thomas.

AMERICANS! forever bear in mind the BATTLE of LEXINGTON! where British Troops, unmolested and unprovoked wantonly, and in a most inhuman manner fired upon and killed a number of our countrymen, then robbed them of their provisions, ransacked, plundered and burnt their houses! nor could the tears of defenseless women, some of whom were in the pains of childbirth, the cries of helpless, babes, nor the prayers of old age, confined to beds of sickness, appease their thirst for blood—or divert them from the DESIGN of MURDER and ROBBERY!

The particulars of this alarming event will, we are credibly informed be soon published by authority, as a Committee of the Provincial Congress have been appointed to make special enquiry, and to take the depositions, on oath, of such as are knowing to the matter. In the mean time, to satisfy the expectations of our readers, we have collected from those whose veracity is unquestioned the following account, vis.

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Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 15, 2015

Encounter Between Generals Nelson and Davis

Weekly Story

 
A dispute between General Jefferson C. Davis and his superior, General William “Bull” Nelson, ends badly.


General Nelson—roughly and angrily—“About twenty-five hundred! About twenty-five hundred! By G—d! you a regular officer, and come here to me and report about the number of men in your command. G—d d—n you, don’t you know sir, you should furnish me the exact number?”


 
 

Encounter Between Generals Nelson and Davis.

 
 

Encounter Between
Generals Nelson and Davis.

—————

The most striking incident which occurred while the regiment [Fifty-Ninth Illinois Volunteers] lay at Louisville, was the shooting of General Nelson by Jeff. C. Davis. It is to be hoped that the act was morally and legally justifiable.

GENERAL Jeff. C. Davis was at home on leave of absence, which he obtained a short time before his division left the State of Mississippi, on a plea of ill health. When the alarm was raised in Louisville that the enemy were marching on that city, General Jeff. C. Davis, who could not reach his command under General Buell, then at Bowling Green, went to General Nelson and tendered his services. General Nelson gave him the command of the city militia, so soon as they were organized. General Davis opened an office and went to work in assisting in the organization. On Wednesday, General Davis called upon General Nelson in his room at the Gait House, in Louisville, when the following took place:

General Davis said, “I have the brigade, General, you assigned me, ready for service, and have called to inquire if I can obtain arms for them.”

General Nelson—“How many men have you?”

General Davis—“About twenty-five hundred men, General.”

General Nelson—roughly and angrily—“About twenty-five hundred! About twenty-five hundred! By G—d! you a regular officer, and come here to me and report about the number of men in your command. G—d d—n you, don’t you know sir, you should furnish me the exact number?”

Read More…

Science News

 
 
Czech physicist Luboš Motl, at the Reference Frame, reports on a study about gender bias in academia.

 


All the other columns reveal a 2-to-1 up to 2.5-to-1 preference for female applicants. Senior women in engineering prefer female applicants by more than a 3-to-1 ratio.

The Reference Frame—Our stringy Universe from a conservative viewpoint.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015 …

Cornell study in PNAS: women STEM faculty are 2-to-1 overrepresented

The fair fraction of female faculty is 2 times lower than the current one.

Steven Pinker called it a shocker of a study but I am not surprised at all. The results coming from the paper I will discuss pretty much agree with my estimates based on the insider knowledge of similar mechanisms.

Wendy Williams and Stephen Ceci (Cornell) just published a paper in the Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 14, 2015

Daniel’s Band.

 

Lion.

 

Daniel’s Band.

“But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank.
“So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no manner of hurt was found upon him, because he believed in his God.”

—————

STANDING by a purpose true,
Heeding God’s command,
Honor them the faithful few!
All hail to Daniel’s band!

Chorus:
Dare to be a Daniel!
Dare to stand alone!
Dare to have a purpose firm;
Dare to make it known!

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 13, 2015

Interview: Jerry Yellin, World War II Veteran

Interview

 
Cpl. Isaac Ibarra, for thr Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System (DVIDS), interviews World War II pilot, Capt. Jerry Yellin.


Capt. Jerry Yellin, from Fairfield, Iowa, flew the final combat mission in World War II. World War II veterans visit Iwo Jima for the 70th anniversary Mar. 21 in commemoration of the end of World War II.

Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System (DVIDS).


Video Icon

  Video: Jerry Yellin, World War II Veteran Interview

III Marine Expeditionary Force / Marine Corps Installations Pacific

Capt. Jerry Yellin, from Fairfield, Iowa, flew the final combat mission in World War II. World War II veterans visit Iwo Jima for the 70th anniversary Mar. 21 in commemoration of the end of World War II.

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Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 13, 2015

Commentary: Jihad vs Crusades

Commentary

 

Bill Warner, at Political Islam, compares the Crusades with the Jihad.

 


So that’s what the jihad looked like over that time period: 548 battles. But remember, when you bring up jihad, people want to bring up the Crusades. So I also prepared a dynamic battle map of all the offensive raids of the crusaders. Let’s watch it and make a comparison.

Political Islam.


 17 
Aug 2014

Jihad vs Crusades

posted in: Videos | 15

 

Whenever you’re dealing with an apologist for Islam, or even a Muslim, and you bring up jihad, almost immediately, they kickback to you: “But what about those terrible crusades? Why they’re the moral justification for jihad and we’re just as bad as they are. So let’s not talk about jihad, okay? Let’s talk about the Crusades.”

Well, what I would like to talk about here, are facts. I created a database of 548 battles that Islam fought: jihad battles against classical civilization. This isn’t even all the battles. It doesn’t include battles Africa, India, Afghanistan and other locations. It’s primarily at data base of the battles against the classical civilization of Rome and Greece.

548 battles are a lot; too many to comprehend. So I created a dynamic battle map with displays of the Mediterranean in 20 year increments. On the display, a white dot designates a battle during the twenty-year period, a new battle. Every time the screen changes to the next 20 year period, the previous white dots turn red and a new set of current battles are shown with white dots so you can see the unfolding history. This may seem a little confusing, but when you see it you’ll know exactly what I mean.

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Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 12, 2015

John Adams—Isaac Hall Tiffany (April 30, 1819)

American Correspondence

 
 
In 1819 John Adams replies to Isaac Hall Tiffany—a student of Aaron Burr—residing at Schoharie Bridge.


“The word Republic, as it is used, may signify anything, everything, or nothing.” For this escape I have been pelted tor the last twenty or thirty years with as many stones as ever were thrown at St. Stephen when St. Paul held the clothes of the stoners; but the aphorism is literal, strict, solemn truth, to speak technically, or scientifically, if you will.

To Isaac Hall Tiffany.

—————

QUINCY, April 30th, 1819.

DEAR SIR:—

OF Republics the varieties are infinite, or at least as numerous as the tunes and changes that can be rung upon a complete set of bells. Of all the varieties, a Democracy is the most national, the most ancient, and the most fundamental and essential of all others. In some writing or other of mine I happened, “ventecalome,” to drop the phrase. “The word Republic, as it is used, may signify anything, everything, or nothing.” For this escape I have been pelted tor the last twenty or thirty years with as many stones as ever were thrown at St. Stephen when St. Paul held the clothes of the stoners; but the aphorism is literal, strict, solemn truth, to speak technically, or scientifically, if you will.

There are Monarchical, Aristocratical, and Democratical Republics. The Government of Great Britain and that of Poland are as strictly Republics as that of Rhode Island, or Connecticut, under their old Charters. If mankind have a right to the voice of experience, they ought to furnish that experience with pen, ink, and paper to write it, and an amanuensis to copy it.

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Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 12, 2015

Jefferson—Isaac Hall Tiffany (April 4, 1819)

American Correspondence

 
 
In 1819 Thomas Jefferson replies to Isaac Hall Tiffany—a student of Aaron Burr—residing at Schoharie Bridge.


Of Liberty, then, I would say, that in the whole plenitude of its extent, it is unobstructed action according to our will; but rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within the limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add “within the limits of the law,” because law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the rights of an individual.

To Isaac Hall Tiffany.

—————

MONTICELLO, April 4, 1819.

SIR,—

AFTER thanking you for your comprehensive tabular chart of the governments of the United States, I must give you the answer which I am obliged to give to all who propose to me to replunge myself into political speculations, “Senex sum, et levissimis curis impar.” I abandon politics, and accomodate myself cheerfully to things as they go, confident in the wisdom of those who direct them, and that they will be better and better directed in the progressive course of knowledge and experience. Our successors start on our shoulders. They know all that we know, and will add to that stock the discoveries of the next fifty years; and what will be their amount we may estimate from what the last fifty years have added to the science of human concerns. The thoughts of others, as I find them on paper, are my amusement and delight; but the labors of the mind in abstruse investigations are irksome and writing itself is become a slow and painful operation, occasioned by a stiffened wrist, the consequence of a former dislocation. I will however, essay the two definitions which you say are more particularly interesting at present: I mean those of the terms Liberty and Republic, aware, however, that they have been so multifariously applied as to convey no precise idea to the mind.

Of Liberty, then, I would say, that in the whole plenitude of its extent, it is unobstructed action according to our will; but rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within the limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add “within the limits of the law,” because law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the rights of an individual.

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Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 9, 2015

Robert E. Lee—Mary Custis Lee (1856)

Correspondence

 
 
Robert E. Lee writes to his wife from his post on the frontier.


In this enlightened age there are few, I believe, but will acknowledge that slavery as an institution is a moral and political evil in any country. It is useless to expatiate on its disadvantages. I think it, however, a greater evil to the white than to the black race, and while my feelings are strongly interested in behalf of the latter, my sympathies are stronger for the former.

To His Wife, Mary Custis Lee.

—————

FORT BROWN, TEXAS, December 27, 1856.

Robert E. Lee, Lt. Col., Second Cavalry, Ft. Brown, Texas, 1860.

Robert E. Lee,
Lt. Col., Second Cavalry,
Ft. Brown, Texas, 1860.

THE steamer has arrived from New Orleans, bringing full files of papers and general intelligence from the “States.” I have enjoyed the former very much, and, in the absence of particular intelligence, have perused with much interest the series of the Alexandria Gazette from the 20th of November to the 8th of December inclusive. Besides the usual good reading matter, I was interested in the relation of local affairs, and inferred, from the quiet and ordinary course of events, that all in the neighborhood was going on well. I trust it may be so, and that you and particularly all at Arlington and our friends elsewhere are well. The steamer brought the President’s message to Congress, and the reports of the various heads of the Departments, so that we are now assured that the Government is in operation and the Union in existence. Not that I had any fears to the contrary, but it is satisfactory always to have facts to go on: they restrain supposition and conjecture, confirm faith, and bring contentment. I was much pleased with the President’s message and the report of the Secretary of War. The views of the President on the domestic institutions of the South are truthfully and faithfully expressed. In this enlightened age there are few, I believe, but will acknowledge that slavery as an institution is a moral and political evil in any country. It is useless to expatiate on its disadvantages. I think it, however, a greater evil to the white than to the black race, and while my feelings are strongly interested in behalf of the latter, my sympathies are stronger for the former. The blacks are immeasurably better off here than in Africa, morally, socially, and physically. The painful discipline they are undergoing is necessary for their instruction as a race, and, I hope, will prepare and lead them to better things. How long their subjection may be necessary is known and ordered by a wise and merciful Providence. Their emancipation will sooner result from a mild and melting influence than the storms and contests of fiery controversy. This influence, though slow, is sure.

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Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 8, 2015

The Nation’s Dead

 

April 9, 1865—Lee Surrenders

Arlington Cemetery, 1893.

Three Thousand Five Hundred Fifty Three Unknown Union Soldiers
Lie Interred in Arlington National Cemetery.

The Nation’s Dead.

—————

FOUR hundred thousand men,
The brave—the good—the true,
In tangled wood, in mountain glen,
On battle plain, in prison pen,
Lie dead for me and you!
Four hundred thousand of the brave
Have made our ransomed soil their grave,
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!

In many a fevered swamp,
By many a black bayou,
In many a cold and frozen camp,
The weary sentinel ceased his tramp,
And died for me and you!
From Western plain to ocean tide
Are stretched the graves of those who died
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 7, 2015

You’ve Got Faith?

Considerations by the Way

 
 
An ancient philosopher illustrates a fundamental principle.


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.


 

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.—Hebrews 11:1.

 

Faith and Works.

—————

WHAT doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?

If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food,

And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit?

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 7, 2015

Commentary: The IDF has warned us about the next Lebanon War

Commentary

 

Ariela Ringel Hoffman, for YNet News, questions what private Israeli citizens could do if Hezbollah launches its intended 1500 rockets a day into Israel.


The obvious question is, after being given a description of city streets as battlefields, what should the public do with this important information? Should they understand that behind all these grim descriptions is a very clear and unambiguous statement, one that can be distilled into four words – every man for himself? Those who do not take care of their own protection will be without it?

YNet News.


 Ariela Ringel Hoffman 

The IDF has warned us about the next Lebanon War

Op-ed: The top brass has been quite clear: The next conflict with our northern neighbor will mean 1,500 missile strikes a day, and no Iron Dome to save Israel’s citizens.

Published: 04.05.15, 23:01 / Israel Opinion

Last November, a senior IDF officer warned of the implications of a Third Lebanon War. His name is Yair Golan, and he was at the time ending his stint as GOC Northern Command and transferring to Tel Aviv to serve as deputy chief of staff.

Everything was laid out in his warning – hundreds of rockets every day, severe damage to infrastructure, loss of civilian life, and, if anyone was in any doubt, the closure of Israel’s airports. especially Ben-Gurion Airport.

. . .

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. Planning massive missile barrage (Photo: EPA)

. . .

Thus, the rich and the poor, Sephardis and Ashkenazis, Arabs and Jews, those with European passport and those with only an Israeli one – everyone in fact – will be here to stay. Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah, who listened carefully to the major general and others in Israel, was happy to chime in and fill in the blanks: Not only would Ben-Gurion Airport be closed, he vowed from his bunker, the entire country would be closed.

Read More…

Posted by: Democratic Thinker | April 6, 2015

Commentary: Church Safety and Security

Commentary

 
 
Aaron Israel, at the Personal Defense Network, reviews safety and security procedures for churches—also applies to other organizations.

 


There is no way a church can guarantee the security of the congregation with or without a special team, just as there is no way a police force can guarantee the security of the public. It is ultimately the individual’s responsibility to defend him or herself when the chips are down.


 

Personal Defense Network.


 

Church Safety and Security

Personal defense inside a church is often an unnecessarily controversial topic. God does not begrudge the church member his or her right to self-defense. See Psalm 144. Photo: author

I am often approached by pastors, deacons, and other church members in positions of authority with questions about church security. The interest is usually in forming some sort of “security team” of volunteers and is focused on the legal concerns inherent in doing so. I believe that these well-intentioned inquiries are often born of misconceptions about what security really means. I feel it is important to truly understand what the goals of church security ought to be and what can be done even on a small budget without raising any legal concerns. The goals of church security are the same as personal security inside the home, a mall, or basically any building: deterrence, detection, and response. Below I will discuss ways to accomplish these goals regardless of budgetary constraints.

Deterrence

To potentially deter violent actors, you don’t have to have a big budget. It is very inexpensive to hire an off-duty police officer or an armed security guard to come stand outside the main entrance to the church. An overt security presence might cause a would-be violent actor to think twice before following through with their plan. However, a determined attacker could simply find a way around overt security measures. We have examples such as the Columbine school massacre, where the murderers simply waited for the resource officer to leave his post before beginning their attack. Overt security measures in the form of uniformed officers may provide the psychological “warm and fuzzy” that some people seek when they talk about security, but aside from the possibility of deterrence, there is nothing magical about having one uniformed officer (or ten) on site.

Read More…

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