June wasn’t a good month for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). While Lena Reppert, the 95-year-old wheelchair-bound U.S.-born woman with terminal cancer, was being humiliated into removing her soiled adult diaper by TSA agents in Florida on her final trip home to die, a male with dual Nigerian-American citizenship, Olajide Oluwaseun Noibi (left), was casually frolicking through airport security checkpoints all across America — on stolen boarding passes, with only a University of Michigan ID card, and on flights that didn’t correspond to the destinations on the boarding passes.
Asked about newspaper publishers who opposed his presidential candidacy in 1952, Adlai Stevenson was prepared with a characteristically witty rejoinder:
"Their job is to separate the wheat from the chaff and then print the chaff, " the Illinois Democrat said.
Is America still a free country? Many of us like to think so. Yes, we can get into a car and drive wherever we want. But the high cost of gas now prevents us from taking the longer trips we’d like to take. We can still go to the mall and buy whatever we want, even though prices have gone up. We can still read whatever we want, and we can say whatever we want. But when it comes to education, suddenly we are confronted with compulsory school attendance laws, compulsory property taxes to pay for the government schools, compulsory testing, compulsory inoculations, forced busing, restrictions against prayer, forced sex ed, death ed, and drug ed. And now, every day over four million children are forced to take Ritalin, a powerful mind- and mood-altering drug, if they want to attend the government school.
Most people take the alphabet for granted. It has been a part of our culture and civilization for so long that most of us haven't the faintest idea of how or where it originated. Yet the idea of using abstract symbols — which we call letters — to stand for the speech sounds of a language is one of the greatest intellectual inventions in all of human history.