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Ways Forward
With the Newtown massacre, guns once again rear their ugly heads. This time, gun acquisitions were entirely legal, being acquired by the first victim, the shooters mother.

The Second Amendment was appropriate for a new, and still very vulnerable, democracy. Its writers were wise people. They specifically and clearly gave a single justification for possessing fire arms. And that justification is: A well regulated militia. Compare those simple words with today's distortions and you find the crux of the gun control problem.

As the strongest nation on earth and in all of history, is the Second Amendment even needed?

We think not. But at the same time, given our history, repeal is a long way off and may never be possible. Meanwhile, what is possible is to bring sanity back to our politics and appoint Supreme Court judges who are unbiased and can read what is written in the context in which it was written.

Can we do it?

One can only hope so.

Michael P. Lynch

Extended Book Review

Profound arguments, handled lightly, are one essence of this book. Another is that it makes a case not only against dogma in politics [and religion] but relativism in philosophy. In essence, Lynch makes the case that we need to face up to skepticism about reason itself. Intelligent Design http://www.roadtopeace.org/research.php?itemid=640 is just one high profile dogma that such skepticism breeds. The war between Mythos and Logos is explicitly revealed in the pages of Lynch’s timely little book.
It is here. Record storms driven by record amount of moist air are THE news to watch. Noticeable, even dramatic, ecological changes are upon us. Increasing temperatures of tropical oceans come about from green-house gases enhanced by human activity beyond those levels naturally present as part of the carbon cycle and recycle.

We have collected blogs and websites dealing with this issue to ease your research.
Now that humankind has weaponized the power of the sun, what is the likelihood that we will blow ourselves up and when. This page is all about the link between the likelihood and when.

The first calculation runs from 1949 to present time and returns the 50% likelihood of a nuclear winter by 2014. That likelihood is just 0.01 or one percent. If this picture holds, and there is no reason to assume that it does or does not--it is just a single sample in time. Having survived for over six decades without a nuclear war, by reverse logic, the true likelihood can be estimated as about one percent.
Eric Holder appointed a Republican federal prosecutor to review nearly a dozen cases of torture that occurred under CIA auspices. Holder cinched up the tight rope on torture. John Durham, a federal prosecutor in Connecticut, is a focused, no-nonsense prosecutor who calls it like it is. He was appointed to do a similar job earlier by Mr. Bush, and by the Clinton Administration before that. So any conclusions he might draw will be hard to attack on legal grounds. Whatever the outcome, politically we are damned if we do and damned if we don't. There are several hard questions we need to ask ourselves. Proceeding to indictments would certify that ours is a nation of laws. It would go far toward recovering our moral leadership in the world. It could also trigger opposition and turn Congress even more intransigent than it is and possibly polarize the nation more than it already is. This is a serious concern.
Posted 15 July, 2009.

Mr President:

America seems to have multiple personalities. Some would turn the other cheek believing literally that the meek shall inherit the earth. At the opposite pole are those who see enemies everywhere, and being enemies, they must be destroyed. Most of us lie somewhere in between; we will fight when necessary. When war is justified, as in WW II, we win by dying. When it is not, we lose by dying in vain.

Everyone knew him simply as Monsignor. We knew him well during his twelve year tenure as president of La Roche College. Gracious to a fault and accepting of all who came along. He was everyone's friend. At the same time, he cared about the future and had the vision, courage, and energy to do something about it. Monsignor passed away suddenly on 13 May, 2009.

His most singular and enduring achievement perhaps was his founding of Pacem In Terris Institute. He wrote the mission statement:
We cannot find words to describe what the American people achieved yesterday. Never again can it be said bigotry, racism and sexism dominate our culture. America never gives up in believing justice will prevail. If the future brings divisions, never again will Americans lose faith that they can force change or be healed.

Some 68 times, Barack Obama used the word "we" last night. We believe he will be inclusive. Our faith in America's future got a big boost from this election's result.

WE CAN DO IT, YES WE CAN!
04 Nov 2008

Conciliatory and graceful. If we dare say so, if Senator McCain had shown more of what follows, he would have done better in the final vote.

McCain:

Thank you. Thank you, my friends. Thank you for coming here on this beautiful Arizona evening.
Here we reproduce most of an article by Jenna Fernandes in The Brandeis Hoot, Friday September 16, 2005, with [commentary.]

Salameh Nematt, Washington Bureau Chief of Al-Hayat International Arab Daily in London, gave a talk... entitled Hope, not Hate," focused on the “long-term strategy for improving relations between the West and the Islamic world....”
What a nation through its people can do about terror.

Apr 2002; Revised July 2003; Jan 2006; Sept 2007; Dec 2007
Updated 10 Feb 2007

There can be no secret personalities by public servants--if you can read tea leaves. From the precinct to the highest echelons of government, or what passes for government, it is the same.
Nine Steps Toward Integration
Updated 07 Apr 2008

On this website you can find procedures for how people, tribes, and nations can improve relationships with one another. And you can find avenues, some already paved, toward peace.
Updated 1 July 2008

We found a very positive, even marvelous, study by Ashutosh Varshney. It fully meets the standards for social research in our times.
Finding our way is so important that we hope that you research it for yourself and assist us with your findings.

The world's largest urban area is also the most peaceful.

Kuhara observes that religious integration seems to be one reason why the world's largest urban area is the most peaceful. It is in fact more than that.
Why do certain societies, including ours, have an instinct for stirring up conditions leading to violence? Not all do. Why such dramatic differences?
Updated 13 May 2008, 14 Sept 2010.

There are multiple reasons for optimism, even in these dire times. Like a pendulum, history swings this way and that, and back to where it started, but always moving forward in technology in spite of resistance from the extremists, be they economic, political, or religious.