COMMENTARY-Passing parade

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Newtown, Connecticut:
A grim Barack Obama made a powerful speech tonight from the Sandy Hook Elementary School auditorium, where he told residents not to lose heart in the wake of the devastating shootings that last Friday took 27 lives, including 20 children, 5 teachers, 1 school psychologist, and the gunman aged 20.

He slowly read the names of these innocent children, just 6 and 7 years old:

“Charlotte . . . Daniel . . . Olivia . . . Josephine . . . Ana . . . Dylan . . . Madeleine . . . Catherine . . . Chase . . . Jesse . . . James . . . Grace . . . Emilie . . . Jack . . . Noah . . . Caroline . . . Jessica . . . Benjamin . . . Avielle . . . Allison.”

The speech, it should be noted, came from his own hand and heart.

He then turned his attention to the living, which is where this column usually heads. It  should be read and thought about by everyone, but especially by Family Court judges, Family Court “specialist” lawyers, Family Court “child evaluators”, the justices on the Courts of Appeal, the justices on the State Supreme Court, and the mothers and fathers caught up in the throes of divorce and the, always, always, unavoidable betrayal of their children.

Obama said “This town reminds Americans what should really matter. . . ”

He pointed out that the nation is failing at what he called “our first task,” which was to care for the children of the nation.  “It’s our first job. If we don’t get that right, we don’t get anything right.”

He then asked: “Can we truly say that we are meeting our obligations? Can we honestly say that we are doing enough to keep our children — all of them — safe from harm? . . . a chance at a good life, with happiness and with purpose? If we are honest with ourselves, the answer is no. We are not doing enough, and we will have to change.”

We can’t tolerate this any more. These tragedies must end. And to end them, we must change. In the coming weeks, I’ll use whatever power this office holds to engage my fellow citizens, from law enforcement, to mental health professionals, to parents and educators, in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this, because what choice do we have? We can’t accept events like this as routine. Are we really prepared to say that we’re powerless in the face of such carnage, that the politics are too hard? Are we prepared to say that such violence visited on our children year after year after year is somehow the price of our freedom?”

I hope I will be excused for focusing my thoughts on our living children – all ages, from young to old. They are still with us, they are not lost, and we still have a chance to get it right. Let this be a way of making amends for the dead.

Here is the full speech and text.

DISCUSSION

The result of what Adam Lanza did was evil, no question about that.

But was his intent evil? I don’t think so, because I don’t think that children are inherently evil.


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URGENT UPDATE

December 14, 2012:
With the terrifying news out of Newtown Connecticut this morning, it is now more clear than ever that psychological profiling of any student demonstrating possibly dangerous behavior be ordered, and to hell with their personal right to privacy. When lives and guns are involved, emergency methods must be taken. It

Saturday, November 3rd. 2012

I don’t bother with moviegoing much any more. My time is taken up with real life things, and I don’t need to escape into worlds of action, horror, fantasy, and in-your-face scatology, and I fear that the same might be said for the general population, as the new economic/political scene gets under way.

However, partly to celebrate my 80th birthday, and partly to see something I could relate to (I have a pilot license and owned 2 planes), and as a SAG member for the past 50 years, I decided to accept Paramount’s invitation for actors to see a special screening of this movie yesterday at the Writers Guild Theater, and interact with the makers at a Q & A afterwards.


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Such irony!!!
The crew should have refused Captain’s orders to go out with a hurricane over the horizon. I’m sure Cap’n Bligh would not have, he was too good of a sailor.

The tall ship had left Connecticut last week en route for St. Petersburg, Fla., heading South and keeping near to the coast. It’s reported that the owners were seeking a buyer somewhere down in the Gulf.


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First we had the Catholic Church, then Penn State; now the Boy Scouts of America scandal is coming out, and next you will be hearing much more about the massive coverup of abuse going on in the family court system, supposedly our court of last resort, but in reality all too often, enablers of a continuing crime perpetrated on our children.

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Hey folks, this is quite exciting! Terry Taylor, the editor of a magazine which is put out twice a year for the Just William Society in the U.K., had been in touch with me a few weeks ago to ask if we could put together the story of my life. Daunting!

Not quite the whole story but a lot of it, starting with my being “discovered” as they used to say, on a bus in Chipperfield, and my beginnings as a child actor in wartime London with comedian Will Hay on BBC radio.

We performed the act for the King, Queen, and Princesses 4 days before the war ended. What followed was my being cast as “Just William”, and the downward spiral of my life as an actor to the present day. That’s 69 years! Here’s what he had to say:


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September 21

Another fine lunch with the Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters at Sportsman’s Lodge in the Valley. This time the special guest was my old enemy, Larry King. I call him my old enemy, because of all the hooha back when he wouldn’t have me on his show to give my side of the story when he interviewed my ex Lynn, way after the breakup, and scrolled nasty remarks about me at the bottom of the screen. So I sued him and CNN in Federal court, remember. (But it was probably the producers who make these decisions, not him.) See the left pane to learn how it ended with the Ninth circuit.

Well then was then and now is now, so I went up to him, offered him a beer, and now we’re friends. David Keeler snapped these pictures. Thanks, David.


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