Shooting with Sons

Shooting, including hunting, tactical training, and target practice, is both enjoyable and educational. It is a good way to enjoy friends and family, and to provide for and protect yourself and those you love in times of need. Safe shooting should be a core skill for all interested Americans.

By Mark D. Harris

Last week I went to the gun range to shoot with one of my sons. Over the years, members of our family have spent many hours on ranges and hunting grounds from Alaska to Germany. Shooting is a useful skill and a pleasant pastime, and we were glad to find the range open again after COVID-19. As we use our weapons, we try to keep several factors in mind:

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Fighting Fires

Fire fighting and other volunteer work is important for the community and rewarding for the individual. Churches, schools, hospitals, political parties, and lots of other organizations need help. Help them!

By Mark D. Harris

I miss active duty in the US Army. Not that retiring was a bad thing; God certainly seemed to direct it. But having a global mission every day, regardless of where you are stationed, is exhilarating. God plants each of us in a specific place and time, and expects us to serve, love, and enjoy Him there. In September 2018, I joined the Volunteer Fire Department in Beaver, WV. Fire service was a new venture for me, but has five major appeals:

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A Conservative Letter on Black Friday

Staying true to conservative ideals, and personal fulfillment, on the biggest spending day of the year.

By Mark D. Harris

I hope you had a terrific Thanksgiving, doing typical conservative things like enjoying family and friends, eating well (and probably too much), and giving thanks to God for the amazing blessings that He has given us.

Let’s be sure that we celebrate Black Friday in the same contented, conservative manner:

  1. Don’t spend too much, because we fiscal conservatives are concerned about debt at every level. Fiscal responsibility, after all, starts at home. Proverbs 22:7 reminds us that “The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender.” Individuals, households, companies, corporations, and government at every level and in just about every nation have far too much debt. Economists and policy makers may fantasize that we live in a world in which debt does not matter, but they are wrong. No civilization in history has ever survived unrestrained borrowing. We won’t either.
  2. Don’t spend too much, because the government already takes away too much of our hard-earned money. Purchases come with sales tax. Driving to stores costs gas taxes, and wear and tear on our vehicles results in taxes associated with maintenance and repairs. The government – local, state, and federal – has a thousand ways to dip into our pockets. 
  3. Don’t spend too much, because everything that we buy we then have to transport, store, maintain, use, and finally dispose of. Many things we also have to insure. These activities take our time, our energy, our resources, and our focus, which we could better use having fun with our families, accomplishing important work, and addressing the problems in our communities. 
  4. Don’t spend too much, because stores full of customers requires stores full of employees. These employees therefore can’t be home today enjoying their friends and families. 
  5. Don’t spend too much, because much of what we buy comes from China, and other places that are not our friends. We end up financing those who would do us harm, and threatening our own national security. 
  6. Don’t spend too much, because shopping on Black Friday is stressful. Every year brings tales of customers getting into fist fights (and worse) trying to get the last cheap deal.
  7. Don’t spend too much, because children, other family members, and friends do not need and will not appreciate piles and piles of gifts. Your presence, not presents, is what people need and value in the final analysis.
  8. Don’t spend too much, because even shopping online in our own homes gives windfall profits to Big Tech – companies which are not friends to conservatives, or to average Americans. Our nation and world will do better if we give as little money as possible to billionaires.
  9. Don’t spend too much, because so many things that are good and fun are free or inexpensive. Public libraries, school concerts, local hikes, school and minor league sports are just a few examples.
  10. Don’t spend too much, because our worth is not in the stuff that we have, or don’t have, but because of our position as children of God. 

Enjoy your friends and family. Happy Black Friday.

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Last updated 10 Oct 2022


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The Rule of Law – Lincoln at Lyceum

The Rule of Law posits that the Law, not an individual, is the supreme authority in a land. Deriving in the West from the Bible and from Hammurabi’s Code, the Rule of Law is one of the major reasons for the success of Western Civilization. Why are we throwing it away?

By Mark D. Harris

“I hope I am over wary; but if I am not, there is, even now, something of ill-omen, amongst us. I mean the increasing disregard for law which pervades the country; the growing disposition to substitute the wild and furious passions, in lieu of the sober judgment of Courts; and the worse than savage mobs, for the executive ministers of justice.”

Lincoln spoke those words in 1837, only 24 years before civil war tore America apart. The future Great Emancipator spoke of mob justice, racially motivated violence, and attacks on American political institutions. Now in 2018, we read of racially motivated shootings at a Pittsburgh synagogue and a Kentucky store, and mail bombs sent to politicians. If 1837 seems similar to 2018, it is…and Americans should do all they can to stop it.

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