Friday, February 18, 2011

The King's Speech

The Rev and I went to see "The King's Speech" tonight.  What a great movie.

The story is of the man who became King George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth II. After his brother abdicates, George ('Bertie') reluctantly assumes the throne. Plagued by a dreaded stammer and considered unfit to be king, Bertie engages the help of an unorthodox speech therapist named Lionel Logue. Through a set of unexpected techniques, and as a result of an unlikely friendship, Bertie is able to find his voice and boldly lead the country through war.

Colin Firth plays King George VI and Geoffrey Rush plays Logue.  Firth's portrayal of the stuttering prince who is afraid to be king is amazing.  Rush is wonderful as the tutor who prepares Bertie to give the very important speech meant to inspire and unite all of Great Britain in war. Of course, as we are walking out of the theater my first thought is to find the original speech that the real King George VI gave in 1939.  What is the internet for, if not to find arcane information such as this.  Well, if you are interested - here it is, the original Gramaphone recording.


Friday, February 11, 2011


There is jubilation in the streets of Egypt.  Hosni Mubarek has stepped down.

Omar Suleiman says:
"President Hosni Mubarak has waived the office of president."
Now the hard work.  Now the people of Egypt need to put together a new government, a new Egypt.

Kudos to Egypt, this was essentially a non-violent revolution.  Kudos to Mubarek, he left peacefully.  My fears yesterday were unfounded.

Let us all hold Egypt in our prayers as they set out now to build a new nation. 


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Egypt's Mubarak refuses to quit

The president of Egypt has just addressed his people.  They were expecting him to step down and end the protests.  He didn't.  He blamed "outside forces" for the revolt and has declared he will not submit to those pressures.

The protestors in Tahrir Square are furious.  Live blog feeds and tweets from the square show that what has so far been a peaceful protest may well now turn violent.  Tweets are calling for the execution of Mubarak.  CNN is showing video of people leaving Tahrir Square and marching presumably to the media center or possibly the president's residence.

The Vice President is now addressing the nation pledging to God and the people that he will work to resolve the problems.  He is telling the people to go home, go back to work, and not to listen to the satellite news stations that are fomenting this unrest.

I am afraid that this is going to get ugly now.  I suspect that the key will be what the military does now.  So far they have not taken sides and have been welcomed by the people as brothers.  I would not be surprised to see a military coup.  The next 12 to 24 hours are going to be vital to the future of Egypt.

I always close my posts with this prayer . . .

Monday, February 07, 2011

Zach Wahls addresses the Iowa Senate

The religious right in my state is on a mission to impose their beliefs on the citizens of Iowa.  A couple of years ago the Iowa Supreme Court ruled that the ban against same sex marriage was an unconstitutional discrimination against a specific group of citizens in our state.  It is now legal in Iowa for two people to marry regardless of their gender.

Now this group is proposing we amend our constitution to specifically ban same sex marriage.  They wish to impose their religious beliefs upon all Iowans regardless of their beliefs.  I think it is important to note here that the court ruling had no impact on anyone's spiritual beliefs, it only addressed the secular aspect of marriage.  Churches are still free to believe what they wish, to codify or condemn as they choose.  But this group wants to make all Iowans conform to their interpretation of The Bible. 

I'm not a theologian so I am not going to argue the theology in this issue.  I will note, though, that this is an issue that is not settled in the Christian world and many who are skilled in theology are debating this issue.  I do find it interesting that this is a group that at other times has fought hard for "seperation of church and state"  when the state has attempted to impose restrictions upon the church but apparently finds it perfectly acceptable for them to impose their church beliefs on the state.

The amendment has passed in the house but is not getting anywhere in the Senate.  It is in committee right now and the public has been invited to comment.  Last week a young man who is a University of Iowa student addressed the senators.  Here is a link from youtube.

Zach did an excellent job of taking this from an intellectual exercise and putting a face on this bill.  Yes, real people are effected by this issue.  Not monsters, not freaks - just plain old people trying to live their lives as best they can.

 I am proud to report that I attend a church where all are welcomed.  Sadly that is not the case at all churches.  I pray that all can find God's love, and as always I pray for PEACE.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Egypt in revolt

I have been glued to the CNN reporting from Egypt since Monday.  The people of Egypt are revolting against Mubarek and the leadership in Egypt.  This is history in the making and the media coverage has been mesmerizing. 

This is the first time that I know of that modern communication technology has played such an important role, not just in the reporting but also the organization of the protests.  The internet, Twitter, Facebook, cell phone, texting - all of this has contributed to the story.

The reporters are saying that this is not an organized protest of one group but an uprising of the people of Egypt.  Early on, the marches were impromptu gatherings organized via the internet.  Some of the earliest reports came out from bloggers in Egypt.  Blog posts and Tweets are still some of the most fascinating reports coming out of Cairo and Alexandria.

Sadly, what was for 8 days a peaceful protest, today turned violent.  We see images of Anderson Cooper being attacked, pictures of Egyptian citizens who have been beaten and shot.  It is clear that Mubarek can not stay in office but there is no clear path out for him or his country.

I guess all this old bearded PH can do is pray, as always, for  PEACE.