Friday, August 4, 2023

Barbie meets her maker

For Quarta's 21st birthday, we had our nails done, dressed in pink and went to see the Barbie movie. I had avoided listening to reviews beforehand; I was not particularly looking forward to it because despite avoiding reviews, I could pick up on the buzz that was pegging this as a radical feminist manifesto ("poisoning the well" would not be an exaggeration). But I was pleasantly surprised. And yet, conflicted. Which is perhaps what director Greta Gerwig intended. I respect her previous work enough to give her the benefit of the doubt... and she has brought forth something I wouldn't have thought possible: a Barbie comedy... with depth.

I didn't play with Barbies growing up. I read Nancy Drew instead. I don't consider myself a feminist and never have; if pressed, I'd say I'm a Christian Classical Humanist. I was mildly surprised to see Barbie brought forward as an icon of feminism at all; that is a very 21st century rewrite of a 20th century marketing strategy that seemed designed more to promote materialism and capitalism aimed at children (must buy all the accessories!!) Also, Barbie was always shallow to me, and self-absorbed in a way that I disliked more as I grew older; she was the stereotypical "cheerleader type" who was the arch-enemy of us smart/awkward girls. Maybe Mattel made Doctor Barbie and Politician Barbie, but I certainly don't remember them featuring prominently, or at all, in the Saturday morning ads. Or maybe, my mother was skeptical about the advisability of Barbie as a role model for me until I was old enough that, when I finally did buy one, I developed a slight aversion to Barbie all on my own. Because I had my loyalties, and they were to Nancy Drew. So, I was going into this prepared to be a bit cynical... and Barbie surprised me by being a bit cynical back, but with a core of human-like compassion that elevates the story above fluff. 

Toy Story taught us that a movie about a child's playthings could have great emotional depth and be appropriate for all ages. I thought at first this was a pink-flavored riff on Toy Story. But there, the toys unquestionably serve their kids and rigorously obey the rules of their world when kids are present, only taking on a life of their own when no humans are around. Here, Barbie herself, played to blonde perfection by Margot Robbie, begins a human-like quest for self-actualization when she wakes up one morning with flat feet and thoughts of death. 

Stereotypical Barbie, after this sudden awareness of her mortality, seeks help from Weird Barbie (Kate McKinnon), an outcast who resembles what happened to my sisters' Barbie when they tried to turn her into Ken. She is told she needs to leave Barbie Land and go to the real world to find her girl, because she is being affected by her girl's thoughts. So Barbie sets off using all the pink modes of transport available to her... and her counterpart Ken, played by Ryan Gosling, stows away until it's too late to leave him behind. When they reach the real world, Barbie goes into Nancy Drew mode to find out what has caused the sudden self-awareness. It's a quest for the meaning of her life, and ultimately strikes the viewer as religious in nature.

Barbie infiltrates Mattel headquarters, which is in this setting run by an all-male board designed to produce a sense of vast unfairness in the audience and seems a bit of a cheap shot... until you realize that Mattel authorized this movie and will profit from it handsomely. She finally finds her girl (not quite the first one she thought it was), who is also dealing with thoughts of death, but who has some wise advice to give about Barbie's fears: "That's life. It's all change." To which Barbie responds, "That's terrifying."  

While fleeing from Will Ferrell and numerous dark-suited executives who are threatened by her intrusion into the "real" world, Barbie meets her creator, Ruth, played sweetly by Rhea Perlman. Her quest to the "real" world awakes in her a need to become real herself and find meaning by transforming from a perfect doll to a flawed real woman. At this point I realized this was a story more like Pinocchio, or the Velveteen Rabbit.

Meanwhile, Ken is discovering that men in the real world have more agency than the Kens in Barbie Land, where Ken is basically an accessory to Barbie and his only job description is "beach." So, he sets out back to Barbie Land to introduce the concept of patriarchy to the other Kens. When this news reaches Barbie, she enlists the help of the America Ferrera's character and her daughter. They have a little hesitancy about leaving everything to go to Barbie Land, but they decide that Dad will be fine without them for a bit, as he is practicing Spanish on Duolingo.

The battle of the sexes back in Barbie Land is a little over-the-top... but then, this is a comic movie about a doll developing self-awareness so... I took it as comedy. You might cry at parts though.

Barbie is appropriate for older children, but not really for the 8-10 and under set. It has a great deal of irony that will just be confusing to young children and adults who don't fully process irony. And because it posits a "Barbie Land" where women rule and men are just ornamental beach bums, you shouldn't inflict it on men or boys unless they come willingly. (I mean, give Ben Shapiro a break, of course he's going to trash the movie if he was forced to watch it. I would have done the same if I had been forced to watch Rambo.) Others have criticized the symbolism of little girls smashing their baby dolls in the first scene as being a metaphor for abortion, but I wonder if they've ever actually seen little girls play with dolls, because that part seemed humorous to me. Oh yes, and Doctor Barbie was a ringer. Again, I'd caution against ignoring the PG-13 rating.

My mother would have disliked the fact that the movie portrayed most of the men as buffoons, like too many cartoons and sitcoms of the 20th century. And my harshest criticism would be that Ryan Gosling's Ken was not given the same opportunity for character development. Maybe, there should be a sequel giving Ken that opportunity. I think it would be great if Mel Gibson directed it.

Thursday, July 6, 2023

Finished top: Rainbow String Star


Hey, here's a radical idea... an actual quilt featured in my blog, which is mainly about quilting and knitting! 

Based on "Santa Fe String Star" from Bonnie Hunter's book "String Fling" (2012). Bonnie's designs have been a huge part of my quilting life since about 2010, and I've made her mystery quilts almost every year and had a grand time doing them. For this one I was playing with my strings in color families, so I took it in a different direction. I made the center star a color progression, and I used leftover diamonds to piece 8 mini stars to set around the center star. Bonnie's design has a double border of flying geese, but I used applique to attach the mini stars. That was a slow process and it sat for a long time between stitching sessions, but it's finished now. Except for the quilting, sigh. I'm thinking of trying to achieve a "pebble" circular pattern for the background gray. 

Many of the strings were from my MIL's scrap collection, and she loves bright colors. I seem to have even more than when I started though. That is the way of scraps!

Friday, June 30, 2023

Things I picked up from my father - Part II

(Last blog entry, more than six months ago. Let's see if I can do a little better.)

I was recounting shaping influences of my Dad, and how reflecting on his life makes me realize some of the intangible things I've always known were true, but not why. I'd left off a few years after this photo was taken, around Christmas 1967, at my grandparents' home in Princeton, IN. My oh-so-young parents with me, and that's my dad's sister Carol and her husband. Aunt Carol died, too suddenly, in December 2021, a few months before Dad's last illness started.

My first memories were of the Allenside UPC, the congregation that was my father's first pastorate. We lived in the manse, I learned to ride a two-wheel bike in the church parking lot, and I would visit Daddy in his office sometimes. Mrs. Hawley, her hands purple with ditto machine ink from printing the bulletins, would show me in, and Dad would give me a handful of cinnamon red-hots and let me draw a picture with his colored pencils, which he would then attach to his filing cabinet with a magnet.

Among many other tasks, my parents took charge of the youth group. And you had to have summer projects for the young people... this was in 1971, when they went on a work camp trip down to New Mexico. My brother and I went along, but I'm hazy on the details. This may have been the trip when we were each sick with different things, pinkeye and an ear infection, but we swapped midway through. I do remember the "big kids" and their projects - a paper drive, a fundraiser for cystic fibrosis, and witnessing youth group in the basement of Allenside, with pillow fights (Mom wouldn't let me participate) and the game where you have to blow a ping-pong ball across the goal line.

When she wasn't helping lead the youth group, Mom spent a lot of time stripping the varnish off of old oak furniture that had been stored in her grandparents' barn, rubbing it with linseed oil and restoring it to beauty and utility. She proofread, typed and retyped my dad's thesis. She took us to doctor's appointments and the special evaluations my brother needed, and made sure I knew about stranger danger and how to walk the two blocks to Rimer school safely. She was active in the women's Bible study, and both my parents took the training and were leaders for Evangelism Explosion, which sparked a mini-revival within the church. Dad was active in shaping the church session and participated in Presbytery and Synod while he prepared to return to the Netherlands to defend his thesis and receive his doctorate.

But unbeknownst to me, storm clouds were brewing. The mainline UPC church was liberalizing, and ordination of women elders was the issue they used to force Dad out. He became one of the founding fathers of Ascension Presbytery in the PCA. You can read the big picture version on the Aquila Report Founding of PCA Ascension Presbytery , written by my dad's good friend Dick Knodel. I was seven, and the months from March-July of 1975 (and for a bit after too) are a series of flashbulb memories with mostly a blur in between:

FLASH * Daddy is preaching his resignation sermon, wearing his black robe, I'm watching from the church balcony and seeing him cry for the first time in my life. There's a crowd of people all around * FLASH * Miss Hall, Miss Barrow, the Bruders, the Oldakers, the Peppers, the Calers and a bunch of other people are seeing us off at Akron-Canton Airport. I'm excited, it's the first time I remember being in an airplane and I have my own flight bag and I get a whole month off of 2nd grade while we are in Holland. *
FLASH * Arrival in Holland, picked up at the airport by the Van Vlimmerens, our home for the month is a 2nd floor apartment in Dordrecht and my room has a wardrobe... does it lead to Narnia? But it's locked. * FLASH * Organ recital at the Grote Kerk. There are people buried under those carved stones on the floor! * FLASH * Rainy days, visit to the toy store to buy Lego sets to keep Andy and me occupied while Dad studies. Mine is a windmill. * 

FLASH * April 11. A large lecture hall and everyone is talking in Dutch. Daddy is now a Doctor. He wears a formal suit with tails on the coat. The Princess Beatrix passes by on her own business accompanied by a small crowd, remarks on the cuteness of my brother, doesn't notice me. But her coat is in Daddy's dressing room and I get to see it. It's plain white wool, not purple velvet like I was expecting. * FLASH * Markets, De Efteling, rijsttafel, Madurodam, Kinderdijk, Rijksmuseum, Dutch cheese, flowers... * 

FLASH * Back in the US, Faith PCA is begun and meets at Erwine Middle School. We sing "Faith of our Fathers" in the gymnasium. * FLASH * I have no memories of how or when we moved, but we are living at 4105 State Rd. I have my own room. It is smaller than the one in the manse, but I get to choose the paint color. I choose orange. * FLASH * The church has a property. It is a former golf course clubhouse. The men from the church do a lot of work to make it usable as a church. * 

FLASH * I am in 3rd grade at Turkeyfoot Elementary, and I have no friends. * FLASH * The house is small but there is a lot of land with many apple trees, a grape arbor, cherry trees, berry bushes, and woods in the back with blackberries and blueberries. I learn to climb the maple tree in the backyard. * FLASH * 4th grade. Mrs. Lucia. Mrs. Fink who teaches music. Bus 19. I start reading Nancy Drew. * FLASH * My baby sister is born. I get to share a room with her. Two years later another sister is born, and I get to move upstairs to the attic guest room. Except when there are guests, when I sleep in the basement rumpus room. Dad builds a really cool treehouse in one of the apple trees. * 

In the 5 years between 1975 and 1980 we lived in 3 different houses and I attended 5 different schools. I'm pretty sure we were below the poverty line for that first year, but I never felt it and Dad never looked back. They were hard years, but the thing that made the difference for me was church family. I'm sorry for people who don't have an extended church family. Mr. Pepper taught Dad the finer points of gardening and Mr. Beckley was his fishing buddy and brought bags of day-old bread and government surplus cheese on occasion. There are so many others who were our social safety net, and I think of them even today in the same way as family members... just "church family" as Dad would call them. But a big part of it was that they were incredibly grateful and loyal to my father. He had, in a sense, led them out of Egypt. 

He never did get the seminary or college professor post he had prepped for, but he had a very busy life and played an active role in the PCA in those first years. He served on multiple committees and always attended General Assembly, forging new friendships each year and returning to us with a few of the new jokes he collected. Sometimes we went along and set our trailer up in a nearby campground so we could experience the host city of General Assembly before heading to New Mexico for the rest of vacation. I remember doing this at Covenant College, Calvin College, and in Baton Rouge, Saint Louis, and somewhere in Wisconsin, when we bought an enormous wheel of cheese and ate it for the rest of vacation. He mentored several young men who are pastors today. He served as a fraternal delegate to the OPC on a few occasions, and served on the "Joining and Receiving" committee when there was an attempt to complete a merger of the two denominations. We had many missionaries and guest speakers come through for special conferences and speaking events, and we put them up in our home. He was intellectually honest, fair to everyone and never spiteful to those he disagreed with.  As a teacher, I tried to emulate that and still keep reminding myself that there are no stupid questions and everyone is a beginner at first. Some of us have to begin multiple times.

Eventually his extensive correspondence will be donated to the PCA Historical Center in Missouri. Many of his sermons are available now on Sermon Audio for everyone. 

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Things I picked up from my father - Part I

 A major life event, like the loss of a parent, triggers a great deal of introspection, taking stock of your life and values, philosophizing, etc. For me, I always think "I will remember these lessons forever" and then I don't. So I'm writing some of them down here, before they fly away. It won't be polished, but at least they will be recorded.

My dad grew up in small town Indiana, descended from people who moved into Indiana from about 1800-1850. There were Revolutionary War patriots, Quakers from North Carolina, German farmers from Prussia who took a riverboat up from New Orleans with their life's possessions in a few crates, English, Scottish, Scots-Irish, and Welsh. Whatever their background, and none were very wealthy, they banded together and helped turn Indian territory from wilderness to fruitful farmland. Today isn't the post for full-on genealogy, but trust me, I've grown in appreciation for the shaping influences of generations before my grandparents while getting into that hobby. Suffice it to say, he inherited humility, honesty, industriousness, kindness, courage and conviction from his ancestors. And this may be reading into it a bit, but it's my rambling blog after all - I think he also inherited a bit of impulsiveness, risk-taking, and a stubborn commitment (the kind that digs in when challenged by "superiors") to what he believed was the right thing to do. The courage of his convictions. He was not naturally patient... but few people would have known that outside his family, because he kept impatience in check.

His parents were not wealthy and worked hard - his father reported 60 hours a week in 1950. He didn't go to kindergarten... that was still a newfangled thing in the 40's, I guess. ADHD as a diagnosis also hadn't been invented yet... so he was allowed to grow up more or less normally, only developing an antipathy for those teachers who had a clear prejudice against him. Orville Redenbacher was the county agricultural agent and his wife was chair of the PTA. Popcorn was one of the four food groups, and he had a side hustle with a school buddy buying a truckload of ripe watermelon to take to Chicago and sell. He had other side hustles... the longest-serving paperboy for the Princeton Courier for example. He knew every business owner around the town square and took us on visits to the fire department and some of the farms he knew. He had a chemistry set as a boy and made mad experiments with it... including a bottle rocket that waited approximately 40 years to be let off, one 4th of July. He was part of the class of '57 that had its dreams. He was headed for a Navy ROTC scholarship to Purdue to be an engineer, when he felt the call to become a minister. 

So he started down the Road Less Traveled. He went to Muskingum, a small Presbyterian school in Ohio. He studied Philosophy and History, met my mom, became lifelong friends with my "uncle" Wayne, and was a member of the Ulster club, a fraternity for prospective ministers. Philosophy, taught by Roy Will Butler, was a challenge but he was determined to master it, and did. (My mom added philosophy to her list of majors, but said she never really "got" it other than in a book-learning way.) He spent a year after college in Ethiopia, originally intending to be just one of a team of young men doing grunt construction work... but was recruited to teach middle school English and math instead because of his college degree. He came back from Ethiopia with a lifelong heart for missions and eagerness for travel, and a love of the spicy Ethiopian beef stew, Wat, served with hard boiled eggs and pancakes when I was growing up. Later, he would hear of the fall of Ethiopia into Marxism and the persecution, perhaps torture, of some of his former students. My memories of this are fuzzy, but impressed on me importance of knowing what you stand for from an early age. (Of course, growing up as the child of both my parents did this anyway, but it was a real-life application of what they were teaching me anyway.)

Back from Ethiopia, he married my mom. 

They moved to Pittsburgh, where he attended Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Mom taught middle school (yes, I got it from both sides!) and Dad studied under John Gerstner, the token conservative at a liberal leaning seminary. Gerstner was relegated to teaching church history, where management thought he could do little harm. You can still find Gerstner's video series on church history... the most theologically oriented church history course in church history, probably... from Ligonier, the ministry founded by his most famous student, R.C. Sproul. Gerstner used to encourage the brightest students who were in his inner circle... maybe they used to call themselves the "Fundy Club", I'm not sure... to seek post-seminary education from (in Gerstner's opinion) the keenest theological mind in the world, Gerrit Cornelis Berkouwer, professor of Systematic Theology at the Free University of Amsterdam. It was a personal crusade for Gerstner, who had witnessed liberalism take over the mainline Presbyterian church. Dad was interested in the mission field, after Ethiopia, or possibly a preaching and teaching ministry in a small church; but Gerstner was stern in his insistence that there must be men trained at the highest level in theology, or there might not be a faithful church left to send out missionaries at all. (This from a conversation with my dad some years ago). So in his final year of seminary, Dad worked on learning Dutch. He told the story of how R.C. Sproul and his wife came to visit them in the seminary apartment to get some tips about preparing for Holland (R.C. was a year behind Dad, I think) and Dad spun him a yarn about how he was concerned about the Dutch theologians, they might be only 4-point Calvinists, denying Irresistible Grace. The way Dad told it, he had R.C. going for a bit, and then showed him the Dutch vocabulary card for tulip - "TULP" it said.

So Dad and Mom moved to the Netherlands. Mom taught at an American school, learned Dutch, played basketball, and apparently got really into knitting when she was pregnant with me. Dad had his studies in Amsterdam, about half an hour from Dordrecht where they lived, and I of course know only what they told me, or what was recorded in pictures, letters, or audio tapes, about this time.

I was about 20 months old when we returned to America, on a ship, and Mom was pregnant with my brother. Dad had achieved his "Doctorandus," roughly the equivalent of a Masters with an IOU for a dissertation. Mom's family home in Middletown, OH was our landing pad. My brother was born there, and within a few months of Dad sending out resumes and applications, he had a call to a United Presbyterian Church in Akron. I gather that he planned to serve that congregation for about 5-8 years, while working on his dissertation, and then seek a job in higher education teaching theology, at a seminary or university. But that didn't happen as planned, and that's a story for next time.

Friday, October 21, 2022

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Rev. Dr. Carl W. Bogue 1939-2022

Carl William Bogue fell asleep in the Lord and passed into glory on Sunday morning, September 18, 2022. Carl was born in 1939 in Vincennes, Indiana, the son of Carl W. Bogue Sr. and Jessie Mae (Parker) Bogue.

He grew up in Princeton, IN, graduated from Princeton High School in 1957, and attended Muskingum College in Ohio, where he met his future wife, Rosalie Maffett. He graduated in 1961 with a B.A. in History and Philosophy.

After college he spent a year at the Presbyterian mission in Dembi Dollo, Ethiopia, teaching 7th and 8th grade.

He married Rosalie in 1962. They would eventually have four children together. He then attended Pittsburgh Theological Seminary for three years, receiving an M.Div. After graduation from seminary he moved to the Netherlands, where he studied systematic theology at the Free University of Amsterdam, receiving a Doctorandus and ultimately, ThD.

Returning to the US in 1969, he took a pastorate at Allenside United Presbyterian Church in Akron, Ohio. He would spend the rest of his career in Akron, first at Allenside and then at Faith Presbyterian Church (Presbyterian Church in America), which he led out of the mainline denomination in 1975. Faith PCA was the first church in that denomination outside of the southern United States. 

Also in 1975, he defended his doctoral thesis, Jonathan Edwards and the Covenant of Grace, by oral exam, in Dutch, at the Free University. His doctorate was republished in 2009, in coordination with the Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale University.

In addition to pastoring a church and keeping a full preaching schedule, he was active in church leadership at the regional level (Ascension Presbytery) and the national level, serving on various committees for the PCA General Assembly. He was a signatory to the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. He taught theology to students at Westminster Academy, a Christian school started by Faith Church. Over the course of his career, he mentored many young men who later became pastors and missionaries in the PCA or Orthodox Presbyterian Church. Besides his thesis, he wrote numerous articles, some pamphlets, and contributed chapters to several books. He taught courses focused on theology and missions at several seminaries and institutions of higher learning, both in the USA and in South Korea and Cyprus. Over the course of his long career, he maintained an extensive correspondence with his colleagues in the pastorate and on the mission field, and with fellow Christians around the world.  He welcomed opportunities to travel and teach or preach wherever he went.

Rosalie passed away from cancer in 2004. He remarried, to Deborah Jones Feil. He retired in 2007 and moved to Scottsdale, Arizona. Even after retirement, he maintained an active preaching and teaching schedule, preaching in many vacant pulpits throughout Arizona and at Calvin OPC in Phoenix. He was received into the OPC in 2020 (Presbytery of Southern California). He and Deborah recently joined a new OPC church plant in Scottsdale; Providence OPC.

He enjoyed playing tennis, and was a lifelong fan of Indiana college basketball, Ohio State football, and the St. Louis Cardinals. He appreciated classical music and had a large record collection. His photo collection was even larger, a testimony to a life filled with family, church work, and travel. He was a skilled gardener and loved fishing in the Portage Lakes of Ohio and the trout streams of New Mexico and Arizona. He had his private pilot’s license for many years. After he retired, he took up skiing with Deb and looked forward to every opportunity to practice his new hobby. 

He is survived by wife Deborah, children Katherine Chapman (Stephen), Andrew Bogue, Elizabeth Bogue, and Sarah Coombes (Christopher), and eight grandchildren: Daniel (Caroline), Peter, Emma, and Chloe Chapman; Liam, Ulrik, Rosalie and Brynn Coombes. He was a mentor and father in the faith to many more. After fighting the good fight, keeping the faith, and finishing his course, he is at home with his Lord. He would not want us to mourn him too much, but rather to work diligently for Christ’s kingdom.

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Free Speech Matters, and Why it Does

Think of this as the forbidden section of the library. Like many others during the pandemic, I have been spending too much time on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Google, and even though most of my time is spent in purely selfish pursuits and I've not had a lot of time to research forbidden topics, I still find myself bumping up against blocks for "harmful information" or "spam" when I come across an interesting link now and then. I'm genuinely curious, so of course that makes me research all the more. And you know what? I'm an educated woman with good critical reading skills. I see nothing, NOTHING, that is worth censoring with such Gestapo tactics. And the very fact that there is a monolithic firewall of big tech billionaires in collusion with a corrupt government makes me very, very suspicious. I was willing to be convinced to some degree, but they had to double down on totalitarianism and censorship. And there is nothing I hate more than a bully.

So this is a holding place for links of interest. Without endorsing them or vouching for "the Science" (which is stupid, anyway - tech billionaires have flunkies to do science for them), why don't you read and decide for yourself, if you like.

Dr. Kathleen Ruddy has a series of informative videos on Brighteon. Here are some:

* Humanized Mice:

* No Abortion, No Pandemic:

* (and the paper this was based on)

* I wonder if linking to Dr. Ruddy's channel "Heard Immunity" would bypass the censors:

* Now, I've been following the harvesting of aborted baby stem cells since the Center for Medical Progress did its exposé videos of Planned Parenthood years ago. I watched every minute of the uncut videos myself, and the "deceptively edited" videos (they were shorter, ok?) as well. I did a little extra research. I looked up "chim mice," a phrase I heard in the videos, and found out way more than I could believe. But apparently, it is no longer considered ethically unthinkable to create human/animal chimerae, as long as the creature is killed off as soon as it has served its purpose for "Science." I was nauseated and researched no more at that time, but recently this came up: ... and this: These may be a better explanation of 

Now, I'm writing this on the day after the leaked Supreme Court decision and abortion is on everyone's brain today. I'm going to schedule the publication of this post, which is really a grab bag of things I'd like to think about and invite you to think about with me, for later this week. I'm planning to cover the Supreme Court situation in a post which I hope to publish May 3.

* I remember when trying to share Hunter Biden's laptop coverage would get you marked as a disinformation scammer, but maybe it's ok to link now. Certainly you can get to Wikipedia:  And maybe to National Review. The idea that major media outlets would conspire to suppress information unfavorable to their favored 

* Back in February, I shared an article from the reputable conservative magazine National Review about how, according to a Johns Hopkins study, COVID lockdowns were counterproductive and should be rejected out of hand - this quickly earned a spanking from Facebook for "missing context" which could mislead people. Honestly, if Facebook gave more attention to stopping garden-variety catfishers and identity thieves, I wouldn't be so contemptuous of their ham-handed attempt to control information.

* Recently a Republican candidate for governor in Oregon, his family, and his campaign staff were assaulted by Antifa radicals in Portland.  During my search on Twitter to find more information, I also came across an account of an Antifa thug who was mocking the man for taking cover during the assault, which did include throwing explosive devices at people and endangered his family. I reported the tweet for celebrating violence. Twitter promptly denied there was any problem to see there, but pretended to be polite while doing so. Elon Musk may do some good there, I don't know. But as long as radicals 

I'm going to leave this post as is, rough and not highly edited at all. Maybe I'll add other egregious violations of free speech as I come across them in future posts. But, and I'm going to sound like an old curmudgeon here, it was only about 3 or 4 years ago that our high-tech overlords decided to enforce Wokeness wherever they could get away with it. It is not right. It is not an American value. It is demonic gaslighting when one party controls a Ministry of Truth that is the arbiter of what is acceptable thought and speech, and segregates all dissenters into virtual internment camps.