This and that: Scalia's visit, mayor's prayer event, Mother's Day

Thursday, May 11, 2006

A crowd of about 2,500 turned out to hear U. S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who spoke May 3 at the Show Me Center.

What a delightful evening. From the opening welcome by Adam Hanna, Southeast Missouri State University student body president, to the comments by university president Ken Dobbins, Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder and the traditional Limbaugh-style factual and informative introduction of Scalia by Missouri Supreme Court Judge Stephen Limbaugh Jr.

Justice Scalia was intellectual fun. From his clarity and common-language discussion of originalist judges by court case examples to his colorful language and mannerisms, listeners came away feeling they had shared a special evening.

My special compliments also to a responsive and respectful audience -- something not being displayed on too many campuses today.

The Mayor's Prayer Breakfast, with Cape Girardeau Mayor Jay Knudtson and Jackson Mayor Paul Sander, May 4 was a great change of pace. There were excellent remarks by all, as this newspaper has previously reported, and a nice change by meeting at one of the area churches (LaCroix United Methodist Church) with snacks provided by many different churches.

Take time to attend next year.

I highly recommend the movie "United 93." I would have no problem with my 12 and older grandchildren seeing it. This documentary-style movie makes you think and share the frustrations, questions and decisions that many dealt with on Sept. 11, 2001. Let's not forget.

Dedicated to freedom: The ultimate determinant in the struggle now going on for the world will not be bombs and rockets but a test of wills and ideas -- a trial of spiritual resolve: the values we hold, the beliefs we cherish and the ideals to which we are dedicated. ... So let us ask ourselves: What kind of people do we think we are? And let us answer: free people, worthy of freedom and determined not only to remain so but to help others gain their freedom as well. -- Ronald Reagan

China's campaign: China has been involved in Africa since the 1960s, supporting rogue regimes and revolutionary groups in accordance with an "anti-imperialist" (anti-Western) theme. Beijing's relations with Sudan escalated in the 1990s with development of large oil reserves. It has invested some $10 billion in Sudan. The state-owned China National Petroleum Corp. owned 40 percent, the largest share, in the Greater Nile Petroleum Operating Co. About 70 percent of Sudan's oil exports go to China, and account for 10 percent of China's oil imports.

In exchange for oil, Beijing provides weapons and diplomatic support. China has supplied Sudan with tanks, artillery, helicopters and fighter aircraft. China has flooded Darfur with antipersonnel mines. Beijing has also helped Sudan build its own factories to manufacture small arms and ammunition, the real weapons of mass destruction in Khartoum's campaign of ethnic-cleansing. Last July, Liang Guanglie, chief of general staff of the Chinese People's Liberation Army assured his Sudanese counterpart that their close ties would continue, citing their "fruitful cooperation in political, economic and cultural fields." Gen. Liang also thanked Sudan for its support of the "one-China" policy against Taiwan (which Beijing considers a renegade province as Khartoum thinks of Darfur), and Khartoum's support for Beijing on human rights.

The Sudan-Darfur tragedy confirms the futility of trying to solve international problems perpetuated by China without confronting Beijing. -- William Hawking, U.S. Business & Industry Council, Washington Times

Sunday is Mother's Day, and though the following is not applicable to the demeanor of my mother, I think many of us over 50 can relate to these comments.

I Owe My Mother

1. My mother taught me to appreciate a job well done. "If you're going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning."

2. My mother taught me religion. "You better pray that will come out of the carpet."

3. My mother taught me about time travel. "If you don't straighten up, I'm going to knock you into the middle of next week."

4. My mother taught me logic. "Because I said so, that's why."

5. My mother taught me more logic. "If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you're not going to the store with me."

6. My mother taught me foresight. "Make sure you wear clean underwear in case you're in an accident."

7. My mother taught me irony. "Keep crying, and I'll give you something to cry about."

8. My mother taught me about the science of osmosis. "Shut your mouth and eat your supper."

9. My mother taught me about contortionism. "Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck."

10. My mother taught me about stamina. "You'll sit there until all that spinach is gone."

11. My mother taught me about weather. "This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it."

12. My mother taught me about hypocrisy. "If I told you once, I've told you a million times. Don't exaggerate."

13. My mother taught me the circle of life. "I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."

14. My mother taught me about behavior modification. "Stop acting like your father."

15. My mother taught me about envy. "There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don't have wonderful parents like you do."

16. My mother taught me about anticipation. "Just wait until we get home."

17. My mother taught me about receiving. "You are going to get it when you get home!"

18. My mother taught me medical science. "If you don't stop crossing your eyes, they are going to get stuck that way."

19. My mother taught me about ESP. "Put your sweater on. Don't you think I know when you are cold?"

20. My mother taught me humor. "When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me."

21. My mother taught me how to become an adult. "If you don't eat your vegetables, you'll never grow up."

22. My mother taught me genetics. "You're just like your father."

23. My mother taught me about my roots. "Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?"

24. My mother taught me wisdom. "When you get to be my age, you'll understand."

25. And my favorite: My mother taught me about justice. "One day you'll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you." -- Author unknown

Gary Rust is chairman of Rust Communications.

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