When Republicans challenged Obamacare in the courts, they sought to overcome the hurdle of persuading the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a program passed by Congress and enacted by a president.
The legal challenge by Texas and 25 other states to the Obama administration’s executive actions on immigration is different.
Congress never passed a Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents, or DAPA, to grant legal status to some 5 million immigrants. President Barack Obama himself never signed what his aides call an “executive action;” Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson takes that honor.
One of my requirements for going to heaven is that God must promise me a couple of hours a week to watch British TV mystery programs. That, plus a ready supply of popcorn.
I can’t remember when my addiction for Brit mystery shows began. It may have been the day when I realized that violence, foul language and promiscuous gunplay aren’t needed to make a who-dun-it program interesting. Those are the elements that distinguish many American crime series and movies, which I also enjoy. The British make murder and mayhem bloody well civilized, not just bloody.
The Brits require viewers to pay close attention. That’s because the characters speak naturally, i.e., they often tend to mumble. They follow what has been called the Prince Charles School of Enunciation. One reason Princess Diana broke up with her crown prince husband is that she couldn’t understand half of what he was saying. Or so I’ve heard.
March 6th marks the 179th anniversary of Davy Crockett’s death at the Alamo.
Every boy in the mid 1950s had a Davy Crockett coonskin cap, and every little girl fantasized about having a bear wrestling, Indian fighting, sharp shooting, buckskin wearing, rootin’ tootin’ male protagonist to swoop her off her feet.
No one ever guessed in 1954-’55 that Davy would become America’s first media sensation when Walt Disney produced the three Crockett feature films for his Sunday night television show.
In case you wanted to know I’m not one of the 33 million taxpayers who contributes $3 to the presidential election campaign fund through their tax returns
I can think of about 33 million other things to do with my money than give it to a presidential candidate, such as supporting the economy.
For instance, if I decline to contribute to the fund for two years or three years, I should have enough money to buy a craft brew anywhere. On my bucket list is a trip to Fargo, North Dakota, home of Wood Chipper ale.
Of all the difficult tasks this world has created, one of the toughest is finding the perfect greeting card for the specific person you’re shopping for. Take my friend, Lola Miranda Chang, for example.
Lola is about 50, and lives in Washington, D.C. She is single now, but is engaged to a good guy she plans to marry before long. She doesn’t smoke or do drugs. She will take maybe one drink a week. Last time I heard from her she was a top-ranked cat herder for the CIA’s Animal Security Division, which targets terrorists disguised as Maine Coon cats, Great Danes and Lipizzaner stallions.
The Hallmark and Gibson greeting card people have a hard time producing cards for distinctive persons like Lola. That’s because she isn’t an easy target for the things that the greeting card companies believe are joke material. Here are some of the subjects they zero in on and devote most of their cards to:
Can you recall when the modern matchmaking industry got started? I can remember reading classified newspaper ads just after the Franco-Prussian War in which lonely singles shopped for mates. But there was nothing like today’s estimated 1,500 dating websites or the approximately 40 million men and women who use them.
Of course, some cultures have practiced it for centuries. There’s a song, “Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match” plus dozens of films and books about how young people rebelled (or prospered) after their parents picked out a marital partner for them. Most of these arrangements had little room for romance or true love. The deciding factors usually involved money, social position, religion and whether the prospective in-laws could stand the sight of each other.
Today’s commercial dating services run advertisements loaded with extravagant promises. One of them, Christian Mingles, implies that it can find you the true love that God intended for you. I wonder if the company’s owners checked with God before making that statement. That’s a pretty big matzo ball they’re hanging out there for you to base your married life on. If you buy into it, and later get divorced, are you allowed to blame God for the breakup?
Though I may be making an assumption, I doubt there will be many Millard Filmore re-enactors at celebrations across the country in recognition of President’s Day.
For those who have little knowledge of American history, Millard Filmore is not the name of a rock star; he was the 13th president of the United States.
Historians have been hard on Filmore, who succeeded Zachery Taylor in July 1850 after the latter died in office. Filmore’s support of the Fugitive Slave Law cost him the Whig Party’s nomination in 1852.
Thoughts that occur to me while I’m shaving or otherwise shaping my karma:
1. Why does the Roman Catholic Church have a near-monopoly on exorcisms? For decades we’ve seen movies and read books about persons becoming inhabited by devils, evil spirits and curses. To cast these bad boys out, families of the victims usually call on a member of the clergy to conduct an exorcism. Almost always, it’s a priest who shows up. Why is this? Don’t the Baptists and Presbyterians have ministers who could do an equally good job? And when is the last time a Catholic nun was given the assignment? Most nuns are just as holy as priests, don’t you think? If I were an evil spirit and a nun shouted, ‘Get your ruddy butt out of here!’ I’d be gone in a tenth of a second.
2. Television is loaded with programs about ghost hunters. To my knowledge, the ghost hunters always approach a haunted house after sunset. Which gives rise to my question: Is darkness a requirement for spooks to be seen, or to be detected with all the fancy-schmancy electronic gear that the ghost hunters bring with them? Are there no daytime ghosts? And why are paranormal movies always more frightening when small children are part of the action?
Indian Shores market INDIAN SHORES – The Indian Shores Sunday Morning Market is open in the parking lot of the Indian Shores Municipal Center, 19305 Gulf Blvd., every Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. through May.
The market is free of charge and family friendly. Leashed pets are welcome.
“All of our vendors are local, hands-on owners and operators,” said Market Operations Manager Laura Garrison. “We have organic produce, gourmet foodies and some of the best artists and crafters in the area. And we’re really happy to be part of the Indian Shores community. The administration and the police department of Indian Shores are an incredible group of people to work with.”
Miller Time Jazz Band Concert CLEARWATER – The Miller Time Jazz Band will perform Sunday, March 1, 2 p.m., at the Safety Harbor Public Library.
Swing to the sound of this local band as they play American Jazz, American Standards, Irish songs, and requests from the audience. The band is a combination of brass, strings, and percussion musicians.
The library is located 101 Second St. N., Safety Harbor. For more information, contact 724-1525, ext. 4112.
Pinellas Park Civic Orchestra concert PINELLAS PARK – The Pinellas Park Civic Orchestra performs Sunday, March 1, 7:30 p.m., at the Performing Arts Center, 4951 78th Ave. N.
The concert will feature baritone Jeff Clark and soprano Suzanne Ruley.
This is a free event; donations accepted.
Call 397-3832 or visit www.pinellasparkcivicorchestra.org for more information.
Non-Trivial Pursuits CLEARWATER – Non-Trivial Pursuits will be presented Monday, March 2, 7 p.m., at Chapel-By-The-Sea, 54 Bay Esplanade, Clearwater Beach.
Harry Coverston will present the program “Is America Still a Christian Nation?”
One of the major questions that has arisen in the culture wars of the late 20th and early 21st century is whether or not America is still a Christian nation. This presentation will give an overview of the historical, legal and cultural issues raised by this question.
Non-Trivial Pursuits, a long-standing program at Chapel-By-The-Sea, offers presentations during the fall and winter on various topics scheduled on selected Monday nights. These presentations include religious and non-religious subjects. The community is invited to these free programs. Light refreshments are served.
Reservations are requested so proper arrangements can be made.
For reservations, call 446-0430. Visit www.chapelbythesea.net.