Bad Choices
By R. D. Flavin


Abigail Hanna in better days ans Ms. Hanna under arrest.

     Last Friday (and the Thursday night before), in northeastern Massachusetts, a series of bad choices were made by a normal middle-class couple and a pretty (and, as discovered later, pretty wacky) baby-sitter they had hired to look after their two-year-old daughter, Lyndon. Friday morning, around 7AM, Lyndon's parents, Tim and Joanie Albers of Hamilton, MA, discovered their daughter was missing. Some hours later, Tom and Marge Crosby were driving several miles away in Rowley, MA when they saw a small naked 'boy' partially covered with leaves alongside the road. It wasn't a 'boy', but rather young Lyndon with her head shaved, a large bruise on her head, and several cigarette burns on her body. Abigail Hanna of Topsfield, MA, who had previously baby-sat Lydon a few times, was soon taken into custody. The Albers apparently made a bad choice in not properly vetting the baby-sitter ...and Abigail now is facing several charges, though now her lawyer argues she suffers from previously undiagnosed mental disorders (and Abigail also had a miscarriage a month previously), and made a really bad choice in kidnapping and harming an innocent, 2-year old-old little girl. Not to detract from the tragedy which befell the Albers family, but bad choices are made all the time.

2-year-old Lyndon Albers at play.

     Though yesterday was Turkey-Day (aka 'Thanksgiving') in the U.S., while Canada celebrates their Thanksgiving Day in October (except for certain Atlantic regions which reject the whole concept), it's the other 'Turkey', the country who, along with Russia, have recently made some bad decisions. On Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2015, the Republic of Turkey believed two Russian Su-24 fighter warplanes had “invaded” Turkish airspace and, allegedly, after several warnings, shot down one of the Russian planes with an air-to-air missile from a Turkish F-16 jet. Both Russian pilots ejected from their aircraft, one was supposed killed by Syrian rebels (the downed Russian warplane landed 2.5 miles inside the Syrian border), while the other pilot was rescued by Russian Special Forces, who suffered one causality during the mission. Turkey says the Russian planes were in Turkish airspace, Russia claims their planes were close, but didn't cross over, Turkey wants to dispose of Syria's Assad and Russia (changing its anti-Assad agreement with the U. S. and NATO) seems back to supporting the Assad regime. The two countries have briefly talked on the telephone, future meetings are anyone's guess, and Russia has said it'll ask the UN security council to look into the matter. Yeah, bad choices on both Turkey and Russian sides, as open communication is necessary in conflict (or war), Russia should have been more open about its intentions, and Turkey gets the “nervous trigger-finger” award for shooting down a quasi-ally without apparent aggressive intentions – i.e., it is extremely doubtful Russia was in Turkish airspace to bomb Turkey or anything of that nature. Bad choices most definitely owed to military machismo.

Russian jet claimed to have been shot at in Turkey, yet landed in Syria.

     They say: kids will be kids, don't trust anyone over 30, and substance abuse idiots will likely always remain substance abuse idiots. With the rare exception, of course... While illegal 'drugs' remain illegal, head-shops continue to carry legal alternatives which may or may not get a person 'high'. In the '70s, fake marijuana was made from wild lettuce and mugwort, while today's fake marijuana (sold as 'Spice' or 'K2') contains a mixture of different synthetic cannabinoids and phenazapam (a legal benzodiazepine drug). Well, that's small beer compared with some of the other products sold at head-shops, specifically the dangerous bath-salts which idiots seem to buy on a regular basis. Bath-salts are for soaking and not snorting or injecting. Doing the latter can and usually is quite dangerous and cause the individual to get violent and display near psychotic behavior. A neighbor down the hall of my apartment building mixed snorting bath-salts and drinking cheap booze, threatened and pushed a bunch of people and now faces a couple of years of urinating in a cup for a probation officer. It's been said such behavior can cause death, so I guess the neighbor got off easy with just a couple of years of walking the straight line. I hope he doesn't slip, but many predict he will. To be redundant: idiots will be idiots.

Example of 'bath-salts' sold in head-shops marked "Not for Human Consumption."

     It's a very sad, yet undeniable fact, religion has spawned many bad choices. From theocracies to over-zealous fanatics, to corruption in various forms, and intentional misinterpretations of so-called 'scriptures' to gain power, money, and more, religion has managed to bring out the best and worst of believers. Everything just mentioned, plus many other wrongs, are 'bad', of course, but to establish or make an attempt to establish a theocracy (Greek θεοκρατία – 'theo', meaning gods or god and 'cracy' or κρατία, as in power or to rule), is basically a government formed by priests and the religious, with the general populaces regarded as lesser beings with few, if any, rights. Sure, many ancient religions may be described as theocracies (with Greece and Rome being debatable), and though Roman Catholicism did despicable things (the Eastern Orthodox probably had some who did wrong, but can't compare to Roman Catholicism), I hesitate to categorize the Church as a theocracy. Now, those Protestants may have started out with a degree of legitimacy, but both Luther and Calvin ended their lives as power-hungry despots. The Episcopal or Anglican church is too complicated to discuss an association with a theocracy. Now, Islam or Muhammadanism, though there have been brief periods where they tolerated other religions, was, is, and shall always be a theocracy. Hence, the Crusades, which I believe we're still fighting.

Former Pres. G. W. Bush announcing "Mission Accomplished" in his 2003 speech regarding the end of the Iraq War (which some would claim ...continues).

     I know, the “People of the Book,” originally a Hebrew term for those who studied the Torah, or those who are recognized as believing in the monotheistic Abrahamic religions, ALL have sections of scripture which seem barbaric, bigoted, and even homicidal in much of today's world (including the United Nations Human Rights Council). Yeah, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam contain harsh penalties for those who disagree with their “scriptures.” Oh, there are moderates of each who pick-and-choose which parts of their sacred books to follow and those which are ...overlooked. Judaism has to come to terms with the Palestinians, but have no open desire to take over the world. Roman Catholicism and other Christian sects and cults likewise are not seeking to rule Earth (except for the Mormon cult). Now, Islam ...wants it all. Period. And, until the rest of the world understands the Islamic intention, bad choices will be made. We are at war in various locations around the world and in 2016 America will elect a president who will have to make either good choices, or continue to make ...bad choices. Those who would kill us are not our friends nor can negotiations be conducted as long as the longing to commit the murdering of innocents remains. It's going to be an interesting vote.

Wishing their was another habitable planet to flee to,

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