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The answer is: Those without shame
American Thinker ^ | January 13, 2011 | Lee Cary

Posted on 01/13/2011 10:36:55 AM PST by jazusamo

I'm retired now, but once upon a time, as a church pastor, I was called on to conduct funerals and memorial services. All too often.

I never saw them as opportunities to convert any possible unbelievers in attendance, exaggerate the virtues of the deceased, or advance some localized ecclesiastical agenda. That's not what they're about.

Funerals and memorial services are about looking beyond the moment where the cold immediacy of death has taken hold, and toward whatever divine, otherworldly, or transcendent beliefs are held by, most importantly, the family, but also their friends. 

When the October 2002 memorial service for the late Senator Paul Wellstone (D. MN) turned into a political pep rally, many were offended.  But who realistically expected it to be anything other than that?  In that extravaganza, dignity was only moderately conspicuous by its absence. To paraphrase Rahm Emanuel: The goal is to never pass up an opportunity to take partisan advantage of a prominent politician's death.    

It's happened again, this hijacking of mourning for political purposes, but this time the assault on dignity is more egregious.  This time the props are innocent murdered civilians.  And, this time they include a little girl.

Never mind what the President said last night. It was flat, harmless, boilerplate stuff, with no timeless, memorable quotes. It was the overall branding of the event, including special-event T-shirts (who bought them?), accompanied by applause as the various dignitaries entered the arena for the political theater, and the hob-knobbing that accompanies the gather of pols that collectively represented yet another amazing exercise of uncommonly bad taste by our political elite.

The question is: Who aims to take advantage of the death of a child to reap political gain?
The answer is: Those without shame.

Rev. Hugh MacKenzie adds:
 
I am a subject matter expert on Memorial Services. After almost 40 years of conducting all sorts of Services of Remembrance in all kinds of contexts and for all manner of deceased, I know the difference between a somber rite of reflection/remembrance and a Pep Rally. Last night I witnessed the latter when the former was what was needed.

T-Shirts! Slogans! Cheers!  You've got to be kidding!

Ideas have consequences.  Ideas and principles mould the rites and ceremonies that follow any dramatic event.  Events so life changing that they demand the focused attention of the community in which it transpired.  Focused in order to express the proper emotions.  Focused in to bring to bear the thoughts and feelings of the community in order to make sense of the these seismic dramas.  How do we make sense of tragedy?  What can we do in the face of either unexpected victory or equally unexpected defeat?

Cheering!  (Or as the AP reported, "Soaring response...").

Focusing on, "We can do better...", from the Consoler-in-Chief! So much for the "Bully Pulpit." So much for liberal sophistication and savvy.

What did we learn? That civility was violated and the society needs to, "Tone the rhetoric down."

This is how we respond to pure evil? The words tawdry and shallow come to mind. Inappropriate doesn't even do that public display of silliness justice.

The public would have been better served by more silence broken only by a Bach partita, a Chopin march, an American folk hymn, or Taps.

Our society seems to be not only short on words but bankrupt on class and sophistication, the result of turning our backs on anything that happened before our own births.

This "ceremony" did bring tears to my eyes but I am sure not in the way the designers of this mess of pop pottage and shallow sentimentality intended.

"Call the people together in solemn assembly...", and don't forget the t-shirts.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: Arizona
KEYWORDS: memorialservice; peprally

1 posted on 01/13/2011 10:36:56 AM PST by jazusamo
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To: jazusamo

The “tone* was set as soon as the first souvenir T-shirt was placed on the stadium seat. This regime has no shame.


2 posted on 01/13/2011 10:40:43 AM PST by azishot (Everyone is entitled to my opinion.)
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To: jazusamo
I never saw them as opportunities to convert any possible unbelievers in attendance

Other than this quote, I completely agreed with everything the author wrote.

But, as a pastor, a funeral is a great time to remind people that death is not necessarily the end - meaning it is a good opportuntity to present the gospel - and must be done with love and sensitivity.

3 posted on 01/13/2011 10:43:01 AM PST by NorCoGOP (OBAMA: Living proof that hope is not a plan.)
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To: jazusamo
The question is:
Who aims to take advantage of the death of a child to reap political gain?

The answer is:

4 posted on 01/13/2011 10:45:21 AM PST by BenLurkin (This post is not a statement of fact. It is merely a personal opinion -- or humor -- or both)
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To: jazusamo
The thing was more appropos of a primitive society.

I wonder if most Americans had the same reaction we did to the rally, or have we descended to that level?

5 posted on 01/13/2011 10:46:45 AM PST by skeeter
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To: jazusamo

just continuation of Obama’s invitation to republicans,
You can come for the ride but you have to sit in the back of the bus
AND
keep your mouth shut.

No wonder Obama feels good today!


6 posted on 01/13/2011 10:50:09 AM PST by griswold3
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To: jazusamo

At the end of the day, the majority of the American people know this was naught but an “Obama” Democrat Party farce!!! Obama and the left-wing Democrat party are having hussy fits over their political wipeout on November 2, 2010. That wipeout was nothing compared to what is going to happen to them come November, 2012!!! I mean, come on, putting on that flim/flam disgusting show last night on a nutcase college campus was someone’s misguided brainchild. Fact: Arizona is going to vote against Obama no matter what the President of the university had to say last night. That “Prez” is so out of it, he doesn’t know where to find the “men’s” room!!! Sad night for Arizona, Sad night for for the victims and....Sad night for America!!!


7 posted on 01/13/2011 10:51:40 AM PST by JLAGRAYFOX
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To: skeeter

I hope most Americans saw it for what it was and it was not a memorial in my view. Sadly, many of the younger generation seem to have different values.


8 posted on 01/13/2011 10:51:50 AM PST by jazusamo (His [Obama's] political base---the young, the left and the thoughtless: Thomas Sowell)
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To: jazusamo
Please bump the Freepathon and donate or become a monthly donor!

9 posted on 01/13/2011 10:55:08 AM PST by jazusamo (His [Obama's] political base---the young, the left and the thoughtless: Thomas Sowell)
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To: jazusamo
I hope most Americans saw it for what it was and it was not a memorial in my view. -- same here, jaz. Good article.
10 posted on 01/13/2011 11:03:55 AM PST by Girlene
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To: BenLurkin

Amen


11 posted on 01/13/2011 11:04:48 AM PST by Vaduz
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To: jazusamo

My 18 year old son (freshman at PSU) came home last night, said he heard some of Obama’s speech on the radio and was disgusted by the way it appeared to be a campaign rally.

There are some young people out there who see what is happening, know they are being screwed by this inept administration and are voting with the Tea Party. The Dems and RINOs have not seen the full impact of the disgust this country has for ‘nanny state’ government. They will soon - in the next election, if not before.


12 posted on 01/13/2011 11:05:20 AM PST by Maryland Man (NOW is the time for conservatives to rise up!!)
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To: jazusamo
It's about me. some_text
13 posted on 01/13/2011 11:09:11 AM PST by boycott (CAL)
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To: Maryland Man
There are some young people out there who see what is happening

You're absolutely right and thank the Lord and many of their parents for it. It's easy to get bitter about our younger people with the way the enemedia covers most all of the seedier side while ignoring or burying stories of the good and wholesome ones.

14 posted on 01/13/2011 11:12:06 AM PST by jazusamo (His [Obama's] political base---the young, the left and the thoughtless: Thomas Sowell)
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To: jazusamo
I didn't watch it, but saw the reruns of clips of it as I searched for the day's weather report for today. The “memorial” service was an anathema to me, but the one thing I did see was the tired, drawn face of Mr. Kelly. His red-ringed eyes, all of which pointed poignantly to his lack of sleep, days of worry, the pain of sitting at the bedside of his beautiful wife, hoping for the best, but being aware of what the worst could be. Thankfully, my prayers for those wounded have been answered. Assuredly, my prayers for the repose of the souls of those who died in Tucson and elsewhere were heard and answered.

Speaking from experience, I can say that when the shock wears off, after all the hullabaloo stops, the last well-wisher leaves and life begins again without the ones you loved or with the remnants of the wounds to be dealt with, I can assure you no one of those who lost someone will EVER want to see or hear of a wake again. It is exhausting, even without the circus in Tucson or the personal circus surrounding my loss, and it will be painful. Those who are surrounded by shallow well-wishers will find themselves alone with their grief and wondering who was all this for — them or me. I hope that among the President, the Congressional and state and county well-wishers someone will bother to check back with those in mourning to see that their burden is made lighter. THAT, my friends, is when the rubber meets the road. I believe that regional and religious customs prevail and, if this is what is normal in Tucson, then by all means go with it. Just make sure that those who mourn and watch over their loved ones aren't left aren't left in the dark night of the soul when the rest of you have taken off your party hats, T-Shirts and gone back to whatever it is you do. It's going to seem like a black hole to those who weren't in the loop of your exuberance.

15 posted on 01/13/2011 11:17:17 AM PST by Constitutions Grandchild
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To: boycott

Yep. Obama really puts the ME in MEMORIAL. As he does with everything. It’s all about him. - Basically, his admonition is largely aimed at Conservatives; he can’t ALLOW Rush Limbaugh, other talk radio hosts AND most especially SARAH PALIN to continue to CRITICIZE him. HE is the Messiah (don’t they know?) sent to bring us all into a perfect Alinsky/Ayers Utopia with the “rich” paying for it. (Hint: the “rich” already are paying for it!)

He was given security during his campaign by the “eeeevil” Bush administration; but do you think he’ll do the same for anyone else? Frankly, I think they’d welcome it if something were to happen to any of these people who DARE to cross the ONE.


16 posted on 01/13/2011 11:26:20 AM PST by Twinkie (Awake and strengthen that which remains . . . . . . . . Revelation 3)
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To: jazusamo
Mr. Giffords had to feel just a little creeped out knowing that his family's situation was being exploited by obama for political purposes.

I am sure he knew that his wife didn't open her eyes for the 1st time when Nancy Pelosi and the other democrats entered her room.

obamar saw this as his chance for political gain the way Bill "I feel your pain" Clinton used the Oklahoma City bombing. The difference is that I believe obamar failed. He came across as out of touch, smug, and just too arrogant. He was trying to "project his voice" as if he was trying to make it some great speech that would be remembered as a great speech. He's just not genuine.

Yeah, obama and his administration are "transparent" but not in the manner we thought he meant when he was campaigning.

some_text

17 posted on 01/13/2011 11:27:12 AM PST by boycott (CAL)
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To: jazusamo

My sentiments exactly.


18 posted on 01/13/2011 11:28:12 AM PST by taxesareforever (Release Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich and let him and his family get on with their lives.)
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To: Constitutions Grandchild

I would presume that the purpose of such a ceremony was to mark the life of the individuals who passed, recognize the legacy they left in the lives and hearts of others and offer the comfort to those remaining who mourn their loss.

I question whether this rally accomplished that.


19 posted on 01/13/2011 11:30:18 AM PST by marsh2
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To: Constitutions Grandchild

You make an excellent point. I imagine the relatives of all the seriously wounded are just like Mr. Kelly and I can’t even imagine how terrible it must be for the relatives of the murdered.


20 posted on 01/13/2011 11:31:32 AM PST by jazusamo (His [Obama's] political base---the young, the left and the thoughtless: Thomas Sowell)
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To: boycott

Well said and you’re right on the money about Zer0 and Clinton.


21 posted on 01/13/2011 11:34:21 AM PST by jazusamo (His [Obama's] political base---the young, the left and the thoughtless: Thomas Sowell)
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To: jazusamo
President Barack Obama says that Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords has opened her eyes for the first time since being shot through the head on Saturday.

But on Sunday:

"She did not say any words," said University Medical Center trauma chief Peter Rhee, M.D. Giffords is in a drug-induced coma in intensive care. Doctors frequently awaken her to check her responsiveness, and she could open her eyes and respond to simple commands Sunday - an encouraging sign, said Rhee said.
22 posted on 01/13/2011 11:59:48 AM PST by caveat emptor ( Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah)
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To: jazusamo

I listened to portions of the “memorial” on the radio. People were reading from the Bible, and when finished, there was applause. I was a little surprised, to say the least.

Then, President Obama gave what appeared to be a conciliatory, let’s all work together, message, but ended it by talking about vitriol.

Niiiiiiice.


23 posted on 01/13/2011 12:56:22 PM PST by Wicket (God bless and protect our troops and God bless America)
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