Gimmee Some Smokes!

An incident today at a fast food place in Bristol, PA reminded me that addictions are ultimately a battle of the mind and reflect a world view. As I pulled into a parking space, a young guy, who seemed to come out of nowhere, slipped behind me, and went around my car and stood about ten feet from my driver’s door. As soon I exited the car, the guy asked if I had a cigarette. I told him no – that I don’t smoke. “Can you give me ten bucks for a pack of cigarettes?”, he unabashedly asked. “No,” I unequivocally said. “When I become an old as* see if I give you anything, the punk snarled, as he walked away. “You need to change your attitude,” I replied. His ignorance grew. “F*** you,” this intellectual spouted. 

https://youtu.be/NWm6PUGpfVU  

The Johnny Smoke anti-smoking PSA played on TV during the 60s has been upstaged by the Opioid Crisis. The old folk song asks “Where have all the flowers gone?” I ask, where have all the anti-smoking public service announcements gone? Except for ads selling stop smoking products, there is not much of a campaign to alert people about the dangers of smoking.  

Although the poison from legal cigarettes acts more slowly than that of illegal drugs, it is still a destructive force in society. In the early 70s, my physical education/health instructor in college told us he’d like to go down south and burn down all the tobacco fields. “Don’t tell your parents I’m really going to do this,”, he said and explained he was just trying to make a point about how dangerous smoking is to your health. Early December, 2017, I lost someone very dear to me as a result of smoking.  

Like illegal drugs, which have additives such as fentanyl and morphine, cigarettes also have toxic additives. The government evidently does not have a problem with cigarette additives, which make cancer sticks more addictive. Jesus said that the love of money is the root of evil. Allegedly to curb smoking, the government jacked up taxes on cigarettes. The tobacco industry, and its partner in crime the government, are no better than drug pushers, whom they say they want to push out. More tax money in the government coffers!  https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/health_effects/effects_cig_smoking/index.htm  

Although not to the extent as the case with street drugs, cigarette smoking burns a hole through people’s pockets, including those who don’t have much money. In the homeless community in Bucks County, PA, some people would put smokes before food. Even housing! Talk about idolatry!   

And by incessantly declaring that drug addiction is a disease, the government and its cohorts keep their tax payer funded jobs and clinics in business. Everything in modern thinking today is a disorder – substance abuse disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (psychobabble for perfectionism) – ad infinitum, ad nauseam.   

I’ve met alcoholics and drug addicts who have overcome their addiction but cannot kick cigarettes!   

Like illegal drugs, cigarette smoking has become a god of this age. Johnny Smoke is an evangelist for the apostate church “Sister Nicotine and The Holy Smokes.” And of course, like liberal churches, which adds poison to scripture, the tobacco industry adds junk to tobacco.   

The first line in Allen Ginsburg’s Beat poem, Howl, in essence a huge run on sentence, captures this age: “I see the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness…” And they continue in madness. They must not realize that De Nile is not just a river in Egypt. Maybe we can bury people who die as a result of smoking in De Nile. Maybe the Egyptian government wouldn’t mind. 

That rabid, entitled punk who tried to hit me up for smokes was out of control. Talk about chasing vanities!  

The struggles and consequences of smoking among the homeless is part of my book on homelessness, which focuses on Bucks County, PA.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/172865209X/ref=cm_sw_r_fa_dp_U_.iX9BbZXM6842?fbclid=IwAR0gPVr_CAM7L0hyxu92hll8KTsLWTUmr1nIEamgTnuc_Hi4yDafBYGcMqs 

Getting to Know You

Lately I’ve been watching the old Lone Ranger episodes in the morning. At the end of each episode, after The Lone Ranger and Tonto (not that Army ranger) save the day, someone asks “who is that masked man?”  The response: “Why, he’s the Lone Ranger”, says someone in the know. Today people don’t even bother to ask who the homeless are. The typical thinking is, he/she is a homeless person, spoken by someone not in the know. 

Until late winter/early spring 2014, I didn’t know who the homeless really are. But then I could honestly sing “getting to know you, getting to know all about you…” And I learned to like some of the homeless people I got to know.  Shortly before I became homeless myself, I got to know many of the homeless in lower Bucks County, PA.  

Who are the homeless?  The only difference between the homeless and the rest of the population is that they don’t have homes.  They are not akin to the Walking Dead.  We don’t see zombies walking aimlessly looking for people to eat when we enter homeless territory in the woods.  The members of the Bucks County establishment are the Morlocks and the people who vote them in are the walking brain dead. 

They are people like you and I who have had the misfortune of losing their homes, through job loss, fire (in an uninsured house) or for other reasons — in some cases a result of their own irresponsibility and sometimes as a result of a combination of causes beyond their control and irresponsibility. 

One organization that has the right approach, right attitude towards the homeless is the Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission. Unfortunately, it’s thrift store in Penndel, PA, the same town whose name is part of the mental health charlatans, Penndel Mental Health Center, is closing. It’s closing so the Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission can better serve other needy people.

Don’t talk about us; talk with us – slogan coined by homeless people from the organization Picture The Homeless.  Homelessness does not define your character, but is just the particular situation you are in. The common denominator is that, as Clarence “Frogman” Henry sang, they “ain’t got no home.”   

As you’ll see in the video, some homeless people want help for legitimate needs while others want money for things that the not only need, but may be harmful or immoral. This is why it’s best to give the homeless things like food or medical supplies, blankets and not money, unless you’re sure. I’ve given homeless folks I know money to buy a meal at fast food places when we were there and saw them purchase food. That’s OK in my book. 

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=clarence+frogman+henry+aint+got+no+home+video&docid=608005915538293417&mid=EA51CB4DA3A1AFB7ECB1EA51CB4DA3A1AFB7ECB1&view=detail&FORM=VIRE 

The trick is, as a fellow volunteer at a food pantry told me when he knew I was hanging with the homeless, is to distinguish between who you can trust and who you can’t. I’ve learned to sort out the user-losers, who don’t want to help themselves, and the winners, who just want a hand up and who want to help themselves. I explore this in my book, based on my experience with the homeless in lower Bucks County and research. I also explore the prejudice against the homeless. 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/172865209X/ref=cm_sw_r_fa_dp_U_.iX9BbZXM6842?fbclid=IwAR0gPVr_CAM7L0hyxu92hll8KTsLWTUmr1nIEamgTnuc_Hi4yDafBYGcMqs 

Today’s Truely Oppressed

In my last blog, I argued that some people, including some churches and Christians, don’t get it that today blacks and other so-called minorities now have equal rights. I reference my first-hand experience, using as an example from my Navy days in the early 70s, the fruit of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s labor.  Some entities, mostly backed by the government, are on a witch hunt to quixotically go after those who threaten life and liberty of minorities. They continue to attack windmills.   Over time, different groups were discriminated against – the Irish, Italians, Germans…  Today it is the homeless. From personal experience over the past four and a half years hanging out with the homeless in lower Bucks County, PA, I witnessed first-hand and through reliable sources the prejudice perpetrated against the homeless. It’s similar to Jim Crow and the black population, although, to my knowledge, no homeless people have been lynched. The liberal establishment’s modus operandi is a way to constructively destroy and keep out of sight and mind the homeless in Bucks.  I haven’t visited the Levittown public library as much as I have in years past. It seems that, as was the case with the civil rights movement, we have overcome the past gross discrimination against the homeless in the library. Just as the song urges us not to be afraid of the reaper, the establishment no longer needs to be afraid of the blog.  https://youtu.be/lceVpWkhJ9w  A reliable source told me recently what I suspected in the past. Because the Friends of The Library help the library, they thought they own the public library and can, by fiat, turn it into their private country club where they can exclude the homeless. When I volunteered in the food pantry at the local Salvation Army, an official there overheard me talking to another volunteer, challenging the harassment of the homeless in the library as a constructive way to get rid of them. The official chimed in that there are people who visit the library who don’t like the homeless there and she was OK with the library discriminating against the homeless in order to cater to the elites. When I challenged the official, she spouted the stereotypes about the homeless being dirty, eating in the library, etc.  The Salvation Army traditionally helps the downtrodden.   When I asked the Salvation Army representative if she ever went to the library to see the homeless for herself, she got dismissive and that was the end of the conversation. But that wasn’t the end of it. When I had to go through her after being offered an opportunity by someone from the Salvation Army regional office to write for the SA, like a Sandinista, she used her position to punish me by blocking my opportunity. The second time I approached her after a few months delay, she snapped “I don’t have time for that!”  Many people, including myself before I got to know the local homeless, don’t really understand them. The name “Skid Row”, unfortunately gives some people an image of the homeless – raggedy looking drunks rummaging through trash cans, lying drunk on the street, etc. In my experience hanging with the homeless in lower Bucks County, PA, I found that this is not the case here. You’re not going to show people who the homeless really are by making a video, using actors while the homeless stood by and were treated like mannequins, as AHTN did. The video did not tell it like it is!  The homeless group Picture The Homeless has a slogan “Don’t Talk About Us; Talk With Us.”  Spot on! In my book “There Are Homeless in Bucks County; A Journey With The Homeless” I focus on my experience hanging with the homeless in lower Bucks County PA to tell it like it is!  https://www.amazon.com/dp/172865209X/ref=cm_sw_r_fa_dp_U_.iX9BbZXM6842?fbclid=IwAR0gPVr_CAM7L0hyxu92hll8KTsLWTUmr1nIEamgTnuc_Hi4yDafBYGcMqs 

Movin On Up?

“For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile–the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him,” -Romans 10:12 Today there are Christians and churches that don’t realize that the civil rights battle has been won! Both conservatives and liberals joined forces with Martin Luther King Jr. in his campaign for equal rights.  

What Dr. King wanted to see is to people to be judged by the content of their character, not the color of their skin. He didn’t want a welfare state, as the liberals did, but to have America live up to the equal protection clause of the constitution. King’s Letter from Birmingham Jail was a response to the white clergy down south to explain why he was doing what he was doing.  

Dr. King delineated two other civil rights movements (I’ll paraphrase): 

    • The go along with the status quo. There were blacks down south who were satisfied, as they had some economic success and were, like George Jefferson, moving on up. He wrote that people who subscribe to this movement in the black community are “complacent.” 
  • Black Nationalism. This movement fostered hatred and bitterness. It was part of the hate America crowd. They repudiated Christianity and preached that the white man is an incurable devil.  

https://web.cn.edu/kwheeler/documents/Letter_Birmingham_Jail.pdf 

 Dr. King practiced non-violent protest to call attention to the injustice flung on the black community. He just wanted America to live up to our standards.  

When I was in the Navy, stationed in Charleston, S.C. in the early 70s, I witnessed the effects of Dr. King’s campaign. In town I befriended some black guys who were in the Navy a decade or two before I was. They shared anecdotes of racial prejudice, although none terribly severe. One of them asked me “what would your shipmates think if they knew you were hanging around with soul?” I replied, “They wouldn’t care. White and black guys go on liberty together all the time; it’s no big deal.”   “You have a good ship,” the guy responded.  

Of course we didn’t get rid of every spec of prejudice. There was an isolated incident on my ship. When I took my turn at mess cooking – slaving for the cooks – I had a minor disagreement with a black cook in the serving area. Just inside the eating area, some white southerners evidently overheard us. When I passed by them, one of them said “don’t take any s*** off that n*****.”  I snapped “That’s between me and Scotty.” And that was the end of it. 

The problem before was that blacks were considered bad just because they were black. But today, there’s an unwritten code that if you accuse a black person of wrongdoing, even if he’s guilty, you are judging all blacks. Take the shooting of thug Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.  There was an outcry of racism and that the cop shot Big Bad Michael Brown just because he was black. Not true. I can hear Tina Turner singing “What’s truth got to do with it got to do with it.” The Department of Justice concluded that the officer shot Brown in self-defense.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shooting_of_Michael_Brown 

Some churches are Afro-centric. We are all humans, Christians, period. Not Afro-Christians, not Russian Christians, not Korean Christians, not Hispanic Christians, not White Christians. 

Some black Christians not only give former President Barry Obama, aka the Skinny Socialist a pass but champion him. True, Obama’s election showed that our nation is not prejudice, but, as a Christian conservative friend said, “I would have rather seen Alan Keys” elected. 

In his concurrent opinion in Adarand Constructors v. Pena, where a company that submitted the lowest bid on a highway contract was not considered a certified business because it did not meet race-based subcontractor demands, challenged it in the Supreme court and won, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote “In my mind, government-sponsored racial discrimination based on benign prejudice is just as noxious as discrimination inspired by malicious prejudice. [*] In each instance, it is racial discrimination, plain and simple.” https://www.law.cornell.edu/supremecourt/text/515/200#writing-ZS 

Justice Antonin Scalia’s concurrent opinion in Adarand: in my view, government can never have a “compelling interest” in discriminating on the basis of race in order to “make up” for past racial discrimination in the opposite direction. 

Two wrongs don’t make a right. I remember hearing Justice Thomas referring to liberals as “camouflage rednecks.” After the Witch Hunt that attempted to cheat Clarence Thomas out of his U. S. Supreme Court nomination, he said the culprits of this hunt conducted “a high-tech lynching.” 

“What shall we conclude then? Do we have any advantage? Not at all! For we have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under the power of sin.” -Romans 3:9 

The Word About The Bird

A legacy has left the homeless meals in lower Bucks County, PA. Word is that Birdman, the Noble Savage that has been showing up at the meals, ravaging through food and drink, collecting his booty and hauling off with gobs of goodies, like the Vandals sacking Rome, has moved! The word is the bird. https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=The+Word+is+the+bird+trashmen+video&view=detail&mid=62E64BD08A680113988862E64BD08A6801139888&FORM=VIRE 

But not to worry, someone has come to replace Birdman.  We haven’t created a name for her yet, but so far, she seems to be filling Birdman’s shoes, or shall I say claws, as the official Noble Savage. Like a wild animal, Birdman came to the meals armed with pitchers and a large bag and goes from table to table trying to swipe whatever he can – food, drinks and other items that are supposed to be for the people at each table and tables where food and drink are set out for all the quests. At one meal, he took the top off the coffee pot and was about to drain the coffee into his container when he was caught. 

The last encounter I remember having with Birdman was when he came to my table, reaching in the bread baskets for grub, simultaneously asking (rhetorically) if people want any more. “Get out of here,” I yelled at him. As soon as he started opening his mouth, I preempted him, saying “get out of here!” This was repeated for a while until Birdman finally got the message and moved on, as other guests laughed.  

One guest thought he must have descended from a hawk, with the way he quickly, out of nowhere, appears and grabs his prey. To use Navy terminology, I would say he’s a sh**bird. 

At one meal he started to take eating utensils from the table in front of him, until someone at the table yelled at him and told him the utensils were someone else’s. In spite of being yelled at, he returned to the table, on the prowl for things he could take. People at the table had to keep looking over their shoulder to watch Birdman like the hawk he is. 

When I said something to someone at the table when I walked by right after Birdman tried to take the utensils, a guy at the table snapped “he’s an a-hole” and added that the bird was banned from two of the community meals permanently. 

A at another meal, Birdman was about to snatch the salt and pepper shakers, but the host stopped him. 

If you sit down at a community meal, you have to set a watch to make sure that Birdman doesn’t take any of your stuff, including food that’s on your table whenever you get up to get a beverage, some food, or go to the restroom. 

Birdman is the quintessential noble savage. The noble savage is a relativistic philosophy championed by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, where all restraints of civilization or any authority are removed and the self becomes the center of the universe. There are no borders. 

Most of the folks who go to the community meals, both homeless and those needy with homes, act civilized and show self-restraint. 

Birdman is a reflection, an example of our rich heritage being turned upside down in an attempt to be replaced by the utopian new world order, which is destroying our society. https://wigtunes.wordpress.com/tag/francis-schaeffer/