Eugene Robinson was courageous in speaking out against the death penalty for Lawrence Russell Brewer, who, along with two other men, committed a heinous hate crime in Jasper Texas some years ago. The three white supremacists murdered James Byrd Jr. after offering him a ride. They killed him by dragging him behind their pickup truck. Robinson said in a recent article that if anyone deserved a needle in the arm it would be Byrd, but Robinson is against the death penalty, period. He considers the death penalty to be a “barbaric anachronism, a crude instrument not of justice but of revenge.” He points out that most other countries have stopped using capital punishment, and urges the U.S. to do the same.
I would have to agree.
In a recent letter to the editor in The Dallas Morning News Allen Barseth wrote, “As a conservative, I would gladly be more compassionate in giving to others if they used my tax dollars as a safety net rather than a hammock.”
I thought that was a telling statement about the legacy of relying on welfare that seems to be passed from generation to generation in some families. Welfare, food stamps, unemployment payments and other government help should be limited to encourage people to find a way out of the need. Members of my family have, at times, relied on that kind of assistance, but that was a temporary situation that we worked through. Granted, some people have no way out, but others have come to accept assistance as a way of life.
“Until one has loved an animal, part of their soul remains unawakened.” I ran across this quote by Anatole France this morning and it struck a chord with me. We are still missing our little dog, and in talking to other animal lovers we have shared how our pets become such an integral part of our lives it leaves a significant hole when they are gone. Some people wonder how one can grieve the loss of a pet with a similar intensity as the grief over losing a loved one. Pet lovers never wonder.
On a lighter note – We opened “Arsenic and Old Lace” last night at the Main Street Theatre in Sulphur Springs last night and the audience loved the show. One nice thing about live theatre is the interaction between the audience and the players, and we all had a lot of fun. I am playing Martha Brewster, one of the Aunts who “help lonely gentlemen to a better place,” and I have really enjoyed working with a terrific cast. Anyone in the East Texas area who would like to see the show, we have performances tonight and tomorrow night at 7, and Sunday at 2. Next week we have performances on Thurs, Fri, and Sat at 7pm. No Sunday matinee.
Pictured here is Martha Brewster and Elaine.