'Stir' over Facebook comment caused by breach of privacy [Updated x2]

I was disheartened by the following news story from the St. Louis Post Dispatch: 'Mormons: 1. Indonesians: 0' debate post by STL Catholic exec causes stir.

The story notes that Alderwoman Lyda Krewson, a Democrat in the 28th ward in St. Louis, tweeted a comment made by an employee of the Archdiocese of St. Louis on the employee's personal Facebook wall—which is set to private, and only accessible/visible to the employee's friends. (Note that the same employee has a public Twitter account that she uses for public communications).

Lyda Krewson public tweet about private affairs stltoday

HHS Mandate - Why Birth Control?

I've been thinking about this lately—especially after the uproar having to do with the Georgetown student and Rush Limbaugh—but why haven't more people questioned the fact that the HHS mandate only provides free birth control, and not a hundred and one other drugs that are, in fact, much more helpful to the saving of lives? The Crescat, in fact, is also thinking about this (why free birth control...).

Birth control, let's face it, can be helpful for one of two goals:

  1. Sexual relationships without 'consequences' (or, to put not too fine a point on it, women being able to have sex without pregnancy as a result).
  2. Limiting the expansion of the human population (eugenics).

Either one of these two goals is not something I want my tax dollars supporting. Besides the fact that I'm morally opposed to all forms of artificial birth control, I'm also opposed to paying for other people's sexual gratification, and I'm extremely opposed to population control.

Morality and Politics

A few years ago, I remember a certain dispute over a restaurant coming into the city of Florissant (where I lived until I was 18). This restaurant (which shall not be named, but is known for busty waitresses and 'irreverence') wanted to have a location in the City of Florissant, but was voted down for moral concerns by the city council at the time.

Regardless of whether or not I supported this restaurant (I did not, and voiced my own concerns at a council meeting), I was highly alarmed by a statement one of the council members made in reference to my concerns: "I cannot legislate morality!"

The problem is, you can... and in fact, every single law that our society (and every society) is built opon is law built upon morality. So, maybe what this council member meant to say is "You can only legislate morality—yours or mine!" (that would be more truthful).

A speech given by Archbishop Chaput at the University of Notre Dame this week prompted the memory I recalled above:

"There is no such thing as morally neutral legislation or morally neutral public policy," he said. "Every law is the public expression of what somebody thinks we ought to do. The question that matters is this: Which moral convictions of which somebodies are going to shape our country's political and cultural future?" (Source).

Let's take, for example, the law that states you must obey posted speed limits. This law is meant to make driving safer for everyone on the roads. Without it, someone might be going too fast, relative to the cars around him, and could end up hitting another car, causing harm to another person and himself. Our society believes, then, that individual freedom to choose a speed at which to drive is not as important as saving another person from potential harm. On a basic level, what the speed limit says is: "Persons should not be harmed."

Therefore, limiting the speed of travel on US roadways is moral legislation.

Take any law, anywhere, and on a basic level, you'll discover a moral belief that is being protected: "Natural resources should be protected," in reference to any law dealing with conservation. "Every company should have a chance at success," in reference to anti-monopoly laws.

Florissant, MO Mayoral Elections - Susan Geerling for Mayor!

Susan Geerling for Mayor Yardsign

[Update: Looks like the results are in, and my mom came in 2nd. Congratulations to Tom Schneider, who won this year's election!].

Today is the day for the Florissant, MO mayoral election, and it's quite a day! I started off at the polls helping my mom's campaign (Geerling for Mayor) at 6:00 a.m., when it was about 35°F, but it's since warmed up to a toasty 60°F with a slight breeze!

It seems there has been lackluster voter turnout so far, but hopefully that was just due to the frigid weather... I think this will contribute, though, to a very close race! We're going to watch the results closely at the election night party later today.

Susan Geerling for Mayor of Florissant, MO

Just a heads up, and a shout out to those living in Florissant (Flo-town, as it's endearingly called by those not in it, but cool enough to admit they were born there): my mother, Susan Geerling, is running for mayor of the city of Florissant!

I believe—nay, I guarantee—she has the city's best interests in mind, and I will be helping her to become the next mayor of a city I'm proud to call my birthplace. Though many may fault her for being honest, genuine, and logical in her decision-making processes (as was evidenced time and time again during her work as Ward 1 Councilwoman), I think these are virtues. Virtues worthy of the office of mayor.

Check out her website—GeerlingForMayor.com*—as well as her presences on Facebook and Twitter!

I'm proud of you, Mom! I know you can weather the storm of the electoral race, and improve an even greater part of the great city of Florissant than you did in the turn of this century!

A Utopian City...

Today I read a post from the Guardian entitled "In Kansas City, school's out." This article fails to engage me on so many levels, and the saddest thing is that the journalist behind the article, Sasha Abramsky, fails, like pretty much all other journalists, to find and highlight the core problem of why school systems (most especially public school systems) are failing, or are, at least, in horrible shape financially, and in enrollment numbers.

"If there are lessons to be learned from Kansas City's dismal experiences, they are about the importance of holistic thinking: of looking for ways not just to desegregate schools but to preserve integrated, economically diverse urban cores; of providing middle-class families with reasons to continue using public services; of building up the notion of common community again so that the public sector flourishes rather than withers" (Source).

The glaring problem that is always overlooked, in this article, in most articles about failing schools, and in almost every conversation I've heard on the subject, is that nobody cares about the kids anymore.

I am, God-willing, going to become a parent in less than two years' time. I want my child(ren) to have the absolute best education, the best opportunities, and the strongest faith and most intelligent sensibilities possible. Does public school offer this for my child? In some districts, maybe. In my experience, three key issues are holding back many parents who, like me, want their children to become intelligent and holy:

The President and the Nobel Prize - Choosing the Many Over the Good

Heralding Obama as a transformative figure in U.S. and international diplomacy, the committee said: "Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future. His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world's population." [Source: Washington Post]

...without regard to the moral good of the people, nor the eternal truths discoverable through human reason. [Note: I'm not speaking solely of our current president, or of any single individual... more so every person I have seen heralded as 'peaceful' and 'loving' lately... whatever happened to working for justice to bring about peace?]