Fandango’s Flashback Friday — October 22nd

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of your earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 22nd) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.


This was originally posted on October 22, 2017.

To Be Enlightened

Image result for kid with a gun

“I don’t understand,” Hal said. “It’s just a handgun and I got it to protect our home and family.”

“Okay, fine. I’ll enlighten you,” Rosemary said. “Statistics show that a gun in the home is more likely to be used in a homicide, suicide, or unintentional shooting than to be used for self-defense.”

“Oh come on,” Hal responded. “That’s fake news.”

“No, it’s not. It’s true,” Rosemary said. “Having a gun in the home is eleven times more likely to be used for attempted or successful suicides than for self-defense. It’s seven times more likely to be used in criminal assaults and homicides, and four times more likely in unintentional shooting deaths or injuries.”

“But we’d use the gun exclusively for self-defense,” Hal objected.

Rosemary sighed. “Did you know that, on average, nearly 5,000 children in the United States receive medical treatment in an emergency room each year for a gun-related injury? And about 21% of those injuries are unintentional. Almost 1,300 children die annually from a gun-related injury in this country.”

“Really?” asked Hal, genuinely surprised by the statistics.

“Yes, and in just the first nine months of this year, almost 3,000 teens and kids have been shot,” Rosemary said. “Now do you understand why I don’t want you to bring a gun into our home?”

“But….”

“But nothing. Either that gun goes, or the kids and I go.”

It was Hal’s turn to sigh. “Yes, fine, you’ve enlightened me.”


Written for today’s one-word prompt, “enlighten.”

One-Liner Wednesday — Children

Taught how to think

“Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.”

Margaret Mead, American cultural anthropologist

This is one of the biggest issues we have in our educational system these days. Children are not taught critical thinking anymore. They are taught how to memorize things so that they can pass standardized tests. We need to foster their inquisitiveness and spend more time teaching them how to think, rather than telling them what to think.


Written for today’s One-Liner Wednesday prompt from Linda G. Hill.

Fandango’s Friday Flashback — March 27

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of you earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 27th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.


This was originally posted on March 27, 2011 on my old blog.

Step Away From That Bottle of Water

There is a war being waged by some environmentalist groups against bottled water. These environmentally conscious crusaders believe that our penchant in this country for buying and drinking water in plastic bottles is not only outrageously expensive (given that most of us can get water for free from the faucets on our kitchen sinks), it is also causing significant harm to our planet.

At least one bottled water company is trying to be more environmentally considerate. Poland Spring recently introduced its Eco-Shape® plastic water bottle. Poland Spring claims that its new bottle is “not only less impactful on the environment, it’s purposely designed to be easy to carry and hold.” I’m glad it was purposely designed to be easy to carry and hold, as opposed to having been accidentally or unintentionally designed that way.

But I digress. Poland Spring brags about its new Eco-Shape® bottle, noting that “it’s lighter, it requires less energy to make – resulting in a reduction of CO2 emissions.” It’s made, they say, with 30% less plastic, has a label that is one-third smaller, and is easier to crush for recycling. In addition, the bottle’s smaller cap results in less plastic than before, when it apparently had a larger cap.

All of this sounds great, doesn’t it? Here’s a company with a conscience. Here’s a company that is doing its part to help planet Earth. Here’s a company that has it in for children.

Say what?!?
3291886E-D840-4C35-B27C-E5D3BC4BA3FBHow, exactly, did I come to this outrageous conclusion? Simple. I carefully read the label on a Poland Spring’s environmentally conscious bottle. This one-third smaller label starts out, in very large letters, boasting “Smaller Cap = Less Plastic.” Yeah, that makes sense. The words “Be Green” also appear on the label. Good advice.

But then there is a section of the label that reads: “WARNING: Cap is a small part and poses a CHOKING HAZARD, particularly for children.” Uh oh. Now there’s a cause for concern, especially if you have children, know children, or are children.

Well, I still say kudos to the folks at Poland Spring. They are being proactive. They are not only doing positive things for the environment with their new eco-friendly bottle, they’re helping to address the global over-population crisis by causing children to suffer violent and painful choking deaths.

You know what they say, right? You can’t make an omelette if you don’t break a few eggs. Sorry kids.

#writephoto — The Asylum Tree

img_1779“Look at that tree, Ma,” Alex said, pointing to a tree with limbs and branches covered torn pieces of cloth. “What does it mean?” he asked her.

“That, sweetie,” Cindy said, “is known as the ‘Asylum Tree.’ It’s meant to remind us of the struggles of people trying to come to the United States from other countries in order to escape violence and persecution.”

“Why does it have all of those rags tied to it?” Alex wanted to know.

“Well, under federal law, anyone from another country can seek asylum — and therefore entry into the U.S. — by claiming to have fled their countries out of fear of persecution over their race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group,” she explained.

“But President Trump is ignoring that law and arresting people from Central America who are seeking asylum,” Cindy said. “ And worse, he’s taking young children away from their mothers and fathers and putting the children into cages.”

“That’s terrible, Ma,” Alex said. “How can our president be so cruel, so heartless?”

“Many of us are asking that same question, Alex,” she agreed. “He is turning our country into a place that many of us don’t recognize anymore. We are embarrassed and ashamed.”

“But the rags,” he said. “I still don’t understand why they are attached to the tree.”

“Each of those pieces of cloth hanging from the tree branches,” she said, “represents a child who has been torn away from their mother or father to remind us of the inhumanity of Donald Trump and those who support him.”

“I hope that the next time we come to see this Asylum Tree, there will be no more rags tied to it,” Alex said.

“I hope so too, sweetie,” Cindy said.


Written for Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt.