2006
07.30

 

Updated July 30, 2006, 11:30 a.m.

Reprinted from: OKobjector.org

Columbia Missourian: Sincere disapproval — Army Reservist Jake Malloy said his religious beliefs prohibited him from taking up arms. His commander, an evangelical pastor, didn’t think his claim was a legitimate one. – by Leah Lohse

This article is a follow-up story about Jake Malloy, a former soldier from Ft. Sill who was unlawfully denied his right to be recognized as a conscientious objector by the US military.

The story itself is stunning, particularly in seeing the degree that the Army violated its own regulations and Malloy’s civil rights in the handling of this case.

But more significantly, the story is worth reading to see how Jake stood firm even in the midst of unlawful persecution. It is inspiring and a reminder that everyone is capable of doing great things.

(BTW, you can read Jakes’s blog here.

2006
07.30

 

Reprinted from: OKobjector.org

Columbia Missourian: Sincere disapproval — Army Reservist Jake Malloy said his religious beliefs prohibited him from taking up arms. His commander, an evangelical pastor, didn’t think his claim was a legitimate one. – by Leah Lohse

This article is a follow-up story about Jake Malloy, a former soldier from Ft. Sill who was unlawfully denied his right to be recognized as a conscientious objector by the US military.

The story itself is stunning, particularly in seeing the degree that the Army violated its own regulations and Malloy’s civil rights in the handling of this case.

But more significantly, the story is worth reading to see how Jake stood firm even in the midst of unlawful persecution. It is inspiring and a reminder that everyone is capable of doing great things.

2006
07.29

A post from the Dog & Duck

 

Well I’m in Austin right now, typing up a quick post via the wi-fi connection at the good ol’ Dog and Duck Pub. I’m having a quick dinner (french fries and queso paired with a Live Oak Heffeweizen) before heading to Barton Springs Pools for a quick dip and shower, and then on to Alan’s wedding at 7 p.m.

Real quick I’ll have to write a quick review of Live Oak Heffeweizen for Beer Advocate.com.

2006
07.29

 

Oklahoma Veterans for Peace: MANY ACTIONS — SAME DIRECTION! Hosted by the Church of the Open Arms — Meeting Brief

A very good summary of the program by Roger of VFP (he is also the author of the blog ). The program was truly a joy to be a part of and I came away with a great deal of appreciation for Catholic Peace Fellowship and Oklahoma VFP and the synergy that is beginning to grow between those groups.

I do though have one small clarification about what Roger said…

In discussions a gentleman in a suite and tie asked that we impeach Bush and vote Democratic, explaining that it was the Bush administration who was ultimately responsible for the improper use of our military. James explained that impeachment or regime change may be impossible and preferred we focus on other efforts.

Probably I didn’t explain myself well here, but what I meant to say was that political change should be pursued (Bush absolutely should be impeached for his unconstitutional actions, and Rumsfeld should face criminal prosecution for war crimes), but the odds are against us in that arena. Certainly we shouldn’t give up (heck, I’m a political candidate so I certainly see some worth in the political process), but I also think that we should also work outside the system with individuals to help them to resist the war machine through nonviolent means (including assisting GI’s to leave the military).

Ideally though these two fronts of action should happen consecutively. Some of us may be drawn to one area of work or the other, but I do think that both fronts are important.

Now on another subject that I didn’t discuss at the program, I also do differ with the questioner on his advice for folks to vote democratic. Certainly there are some good Democrats on the national, state and local levels (i.e. Bert Smith, Rhonda Rudd, Andrew Rice, Dennis Kucinich, Opio Toure, Connie Johnson, etc.), but most Democratic party politicians are active participants in the war machine. In fact, the most recent Democratic candidate for President was agressively pro-war (Kerry actually wanted to send MORE troops to Iraq).

So as far as I’m concerned voting Democratic in of itself is not the answer. Of course my own bias is that I’m a Green, but I do believe that even excellent democratic party politicians have to work within an oppressive organization if they remain Democrats and will be preasured to water down their anti-war beliefs.

Anyway though, I’ve said far more than I meant to but those are a few thoughts. I had better shut up now though because I need to hit the road to Austin.

2006
07.28

 

I know I said I was going to refrain from political posting here, but oh well I gotta say something about this story.

CNN: Psychologists’ group under fire for interrogation policy — Aiding military called ‘incongruous’ with human rights concerns

CHICAGO, Illinois (AP) — The American Psychological Association is under fire from some of its members and other professionals for declaring that it is permissible for psychologists to assist in military interrogations.

An online petition against the group’s policy has garnered more than 1,300 signatures from members and other psychologists. Protest forums are being planned for the APA’s convention next month in New Orleans, Louisiana. And some members have threatened to withhold dues or quit.

The unrest stems from an APA policy, issued last year, that says that while psychologists should not get involved in torture or other degrading treatment, it is ethical for them to act as consultants to interrogation and information-gathering for national security purposes. . .

What the *#$#! How in the world can it be ethical for a phychologist to be a consultant for “interrogation?” Let’s get real. The US military has used and continues to use torture on a regular basis (and trains other countries how to do at the WHISC/School of the Americas). For a psychologist or other medical professional to participate in this activity is a violation of the standard of professional conduct and if their rules say otherwise, then they need to change their rules.

I don’t know if pschology has a hypocratic oath, but surely a basic precept of the science and art of psychology would to be not to use their tremendous power for evil. Any pscyhologist who violates this rule should be kicked out of the profession.

Here’s some more information on this…

Democracy Now: Calls Grow Within American Psychological Association for Ban on Participation in Military Interrogations

Petition Against Psychologists’ Participation in Interrogation of ‘Enemy Combatants’

MartinBaroFund.org: Petition to American Psychological Association

2006
07.27

Heading to Austin this weekend

 

Either late Friday night or early Saturday morning I’m going to be hitting the road to attend the wedding of my old friend Alan (he was something of a spiritual mentor to me for a couple of years when I was at Hope Chapel in Austinto his bride Alliene (here’s the website for their wedding… which unlike most such websites is actually a lot of fun to read). I’m really looking forward to the wedding and to getting to spend some time with friends from my old church down there.

After that I’ll be spending the next couple of days in town with another dear friend K. (my oldest friend except for Aaron) and her husband which should be loads of fun, as well as hopefully getting to spend some time with my brother Dan and his wife (both of whom have blogs… see the links on the right-hand side of the page) who have just moved to Austin to go to law school at UT.

As far as Austin things to do, I’m hoping to maybe get to go downtown to hear some music and also maybe go bike riding in town. (and I may, if I’m in the mood for it go back to the infamous Hippie Hollow for a swim… that place is too much fun!)

I’m also though really looking forward to the time on the road. I’ll probably take the back way to Austin (I swore on my last trip to never take I-35 again… that is the one of the most depressing and boring roads on earth), probably taking US 281 from Wichita Falls southward through the hill country and then into Austin. 281 is a fun drive, pretty much entirely just pretty country and small towns, so I’ll have lots of time for thinking and just reveling in the beauty of it all.

2006
07.25

 

Incredibly thrilling news today from Ireland about one of the most significan Christian archealogical finds in some time…

Tulsa World/AP: Irish worker finds ancient psalms in bog

Scotman.com: Museum hails ancient Psalter found in bog

RTE.ie: Ancient manuscript discovered in the Midlands

. . . The museum said extensive fragments of what appears to be an ancient Psalter, or Book of Psalms, were uncovered by a bulldozer last Thursday.

The manuscript is believed to have been at the location for up to 1,200 years. . .

The Minister for Arts, Sports & Tourism, John O’Donoghue, said the find ‘testifies to the high achievements of our early Christian civilisation and to the responsibility of the present generation in the preservation of our unparalleled legacy from the past’.

2006
07.25

 

NewsOK.com: OCU graduate starts new lifestyle after trading tattoos for law degree

A pretty neat story but one that is not unique at OCU Law. I’ve known quite a few students who came from difficult backgrounds but who were driven to better their communities and themselves. My hope is that OCU Law continues to welcome such students, and hopefully lowers its tuition to make it easier for those folks and other working-class students to go there. I know I’ve been a broken record on the subject of lower tuition but it really is a barrier for many (it almost kept me from graduating).

2006
07.25

My beer reviewing

 

I haven’t talked about it a lot on this blog, but if anyone is interested in reading my reviews of quality beers, click here to read my profile at Beeradvocate.com (so far I have reviewed 31 different beers, many of them local beers from Oklahoma and Texas— one of my goals is to review all of the beers brewed in those states).

2006
07.25

 

Mennonite Weekly Review: Family, hometown celebrate Landis victory

Landis’ mother sees God’s purpose in victory