Sky Links, 9-3-18

Mercy without truth ceases to be mercy at all
Things just got a whole lot messier for the Church. Archbishop Carlo Mario Vigano—the papal ambassador to the US from 2011-2016–alleges that he made Pope Francis aware of Cardinal McCarrick’s homosexual abuses in 2013; further, Vigano claims that the Pope failed to discipline McCarrick until five years later (he was forced to resign in June) in part due to their strong political alliance: McCarrick advocated for Francis’ election to the papacy and the pope relied upon him significantly to oversee the American Church. If these allegations are true, Pope Francis should step down immediately. This could be the defining moment for a Church that repents in action. 
There’s much I love about Pope Francis, especially his action toward the poor and displaced. But his unclear pastoral directives toward persons facing same-sex attraction have always unsettled me. I perceive him as a man who has been evangelized by winsome practicing homosexuals and won over. His legacy to ‘not judge’ persons with same-sex attraction paired with his counsel ‘to accompany’ them on their journey appears to be to a road going nowhere. Mercy without truth ceases to be mercy at all; it merely confirms people in their fractured, fruitless lives. And it leads to tolerating absolutely vile and inexcusable behavior in leaders. Francis judged McCarrick way too late.
Muddy Mercy -Andrew Comiskey





Trust Sessions
And I also take Sessions at his word when he says he has been in control of the Department of Justice (DOJ) from the outset of his tenure. 
Given this integrity – free from political compromise in any direction – Attorney General Sessions is thus able to better serve the Constitution and President Trump. He is free from becoming a false lightning rod for the political opposition, and this allows him freedom to attend to matters that have real substance. He has 27 investigations underway into classified leaks within the DOJ, and who knows what else he is looking at. Draining the swamp and on forward. 
President Donald Trump uses tweets, in part, to distract the top-down media with shiny objects. Then, at the same time, he successfully goes about his positive agenda that serves religious, political and economic liberty for all people equally under the rule of law. Attorney General Jeff Sessions allows the shiny object of the ephemeral debate over his recusal to free him for his substantial work. 
Now, how deeply toxic, dangerous and occultic is the swamp at the DOJ? It may be so toxic, that the free-flowing liquid has long since been drained, and now it requires pickaxes and shovels, with gas-masks in place, to remove the hardened muck. 
Thus, in the serendipity of Sessions’s recusal, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein sets to work on a matter where Sessions knows there is no “there” there, and in time, this will be publicly known to all. Rod becomes the lightning rod. To be “wise as a serpent and innocent as a dove” (pace the language of Jesus), Sessions allows evil to gradually implode on itself, while himself not getting caught in the muck.






Universities must innovate or deteriorate
This fall, 19.9 million college students will be traveling to college campuses across the United States to start a new school year. There are over 4,000colleges and universities in the United States, but Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen says that half are bound for bankruptcy in the next few decades. 
Christensen is known for coining the theory of disruptive innovation in his 1997 book, "The Innovator's Dilemma." Since then, he has applied his theory of disruption to a wide range of industries, including education. 
In his recent book, "The Innovative University," Christensen and co-author Henry Eyring analyze the future of traditional universities, and conclude that online education will become a more cost-effective way for students to receive an education, effectively undermining the business models of traditional institutions and running them out of business.
Half of American colleges will be bankrupt in 10 to 15 years -Abigail Hess





School shooting folklore debunked
How many times per year does a gun go off in an American school?
We should know. But we don't.
 This spring the U.S. Education Department reported that in the 2015-2016 school year, "nearly 240 schools ... reported at least 1 incident involving a school-related shooting." The number is far higher than most other estimates. 
But NPR reached out to every one of those schools repeatedly over the course of three months and found that more than two-thirds of these reported incidents never happened. Child Trends, a nonpartisan nonprofit research organization, assisted NPR in analyzing data from the government's Civil Rights Data Collection. 
We were able to confirm just 11 reported incidents, either directly with schools or through media reports. 
In 161 cases, schools or districts attested that no incident took place or couldn't confirm one. In at least four cases, we found, something did happen, but it didn't meet the government's parameters for a shooting. About a quarter of schools didn't respond to our inquiries.
"When we're talking about such an important and rare event, [this] amount of data error could be very meaningful," says Deborah Temkin, a researcher and program director at Child Trends.
The School Shootings That Weren't -Anya Kamenetz




Aretha Franklin: The Queen of Soul -Reverend Jasper Williams Jr.



I approve of The Reverend Jasper Williams Jr.'s eulogy
  • As a student of history, I love a good history lesson. As a friend of the Franklin family who knew Aretha Franklin’s family and even delivered her own father the Rev. C.L. Franklin’s eulogy, the Rev. Jasper Williams Jr. offered a very knowledgeable perspective about how the Queen of Soul even came to be. I thought it was beautiful that this man who preached the gospel had enough insight to know his daughter did not have to confine herself to gospel music. Williams described in great detail how on one occasion, Rev. C.L. Franklin preached a gospel sermon in an auditorium in Memphis followed up by his daughter’s blues performance. 
  •  Rev. Williams talked about how her iconic voice likely was developed. It was born of pain. The best artists of all kinds have gone through a measure of pain. And if you haven’t gone through pain, it’s hard to identify pleasure. In fact, pain and pleasure are twin souls and the most evocative of artistic expressions reflect both of them. Rev. C.L. Franklin’s home was a broken home and he was forced to raise four children on his own. It wasn’t the ideal situation, Rev. Williams noted and surely there must have been some pain felt along the way. It is likely that Aretha Franklin drew from that pain to sing the blues. I mean she made her first album at 14 years old! She was also 14 years old when she gave birth to her first son. 
  • A lot has been said about how Rev. Williams criticized single mothers when the Queen of Soul was likely a single parent for some time. I didn’t see that. He was saying a two-parent household is the optimum environment in which to raise a child. He was not saying that if you are a single parent, your child is doomed to fail nor was he saying that children from two-parent households always fare better than children raised in a signal parent household. We all know situations where that is not the case. But he was saying if it indeed took two people to form to a create a child, why wouldn’t it be optimum for then those two to raise that child? Now there are situations where that is impossible, but that is the model. Also, he wasn’t saying that aren’t any black fathers in the home, but we all know that this a problem that needs addressing. (In addition, there are many single parents who have chosen to adopt children and that is a choice that should be commended.) 
  • And there are others who believe that Rev. Williams criticized the Black Lives Matter movement. How Sway? He was saving that black lives do matter. And they matter whether we police officers take them or we take them. Yes, police officers shouldn’t kill innocent black people but neither should we. Now, I will admit I don’t like the phrase “black on black crime” because most people when they kill other people kill people from their own race so there is “white on white crime,” “brown on brown crime” and so on. But since his audience was largely black, he was directing to his words to black people. We can support the Black Lives Matter movement AND support eradicating unjust murders in which both parties are black. In fact, it would be pointless not to do so. 
  • Now about his message about the virtues of segregation versus integration. Many of us have said that when black people had to depend on each other, we were more prosperous in terms of creating and sustaining our business models. I’ve never lived through segregation and based on what I’ve learned, I have no desire to do so. But also from what I’ve been told by those who have lived during both times, a certain cohesiveness has been lost in the name of progress. 
  • Speaking of black communities, many people do walk around like zombies on all manner of mood enhancers (drugs). Now, there are other communities who are experiencing this as well (Hello opioid epidemic!) but he was directing the message to the audience. Why is that so upsetting? This remind me when one child is scolded and the child comes back with, “Well, he is doing wrong too” in reference to his brother. That may be the case, but that doesn’t negate your error either. 
  • Back to my first thought. Rev. Williams is the same age as Aretha Franklin when she died last month. Do you not think she didn’t know him? They must have grown up together! That funeral was eight-hours long with dignitaries far and wide but in the end a preacher who had eugologized her father was the one I would dare to say she and the family chose. I know the Queen of Soul belongs to the world, but she was a human being first and she (they) chose him. In sum, all I can say is if you like it, I love it. Who am I to criticize whom you chose to deliver your eulogy?
Seven Reasons Why I Approve of The Rev. Jasper Williams Jr.’s Eulogy at Aretha’s Franklin’s Funeral…
-Jacqueline J. Holness




Cognivex Clarity, "viagra for the brain"

Recently Ben Carson made some comments in an interview with Pamela Brown and Ryan Browne about a brain booster that would become the biggest event in human history.
Ben Carson credits his ability to function and maintained focused on such a high level to a certain set of "smart drugs" that enhance cognitive brain function and neural connectivity, while strengthening the prefrontal cortex and boosting memory and recall.

In an interview with Bill O'Reilly, Ben Carson said that his brain is sharper than ever, more clear and focused and he credits a large part to using Cognivex Clarity. Ben Carson went on to add "The brain is like a muscle, you got to work it out and use supplements just like body builders use, but for your brain, and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing to enhance my mental capabilities".
Trump Battles the FDA Over Carson’s Breakthrough Discovery! Says “This WILL NOT Be Banned, The American People Have a Right To Have Access To This”




John's mom
Roberta McCain, the 106-year-old mother of the late senator John McCain, was front and center at her son’s memorial services at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Friday morning....

...Pushed in a wheelchair by a uniformed serviceman, Roberta paid respects to her son at his casket draped in an American flag in the center of the Capitol’s rotunda. She was also positioned right next to the podium from which Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, Vice President Mike Pence and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gave their tributes to the late Arizona Republican.

At one point during the service, Robert was seen comforting her granddaughter Meghan, and she also received a special greeting from Vice President Pence before the ceremony began.

The service started with a prayer that praised McCain’s “willingness to speak truth as he understood it, even when it was not politically expedient to do so.”...

...As Roberta grieves the loss of her son, who died of brain cancer at the age of 81 on Saturday, a close McCain family friend told PEOPLE that she is a “very strong woman” who’s retained her “spunky” spirit.
“She is all there, mentally, and is still going strong at 106,” the friend said. “She outlived her 81-year-old son. That tells you a lot. But it’s a tough blow to bury your child.”
The insider noted that while Roberta did not travel to Arizona following Friday’s news that her son would be ceasing medical treatment for glioblastoma — the most aggressive form of brain cancer, with which he was diagnosed in July 2017 — the two did speak on the phone recently, and she knew the extent of her son’s illness. 
The friend said Roberta was her son’s “biggest supporter and the leader of his fan club.”
“She was incredibly proud of him,” the source added. “His mommy loved him. He knew that.”
John McCain's 106-Year-Old Mother Leads His Blended Family of 7 Children in D.C. Memorial Services



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