Friday, September 22, 2006

The Week in Speech

I think the United Nations hosted Dictator Week. I don't mean that everyone who spoke was a dictator. I just mean they invited dictators to spout their tyranny manifestos and threats against the free world in the name of international brotherhood. I like what Dennis Prager said of that organization: any group of thugs can get together and vote. The result will still be evil.

Dictator #1: that guy from Iran. If I wrote his name, you'd know whom I mean. But since I can't spell it or pronounce it, I don't think it will hurt if I reference him the same way you do whenever you think of him. He spoke. He seems to think that the "righteous" deserve all the benefits and everyone else should be quiet and submissive so that "justice" can rule. It's a little scary, what he said. But he disguised his real message by repeating boring lists. Justice, Ethics, Compassion... Over and over and over. Excuse me for yawning. Also excuse me for not highly esteeming his thoughts.

Dictator #2: Dictator Chavez of Venezuela. He didn't try to disguise anything. He tried to help it down with a spoonful of laughter. I only heard excerpts of his speech over the radio, but I can picture his smirk. Again, it is annoying that the other delegates care what he says. It is not all that relevant to my life.

On the other hand I read an article today about Senator Barack Obama. When he was running for his senate seat in Illinois, I heard him speak on the television. Despite disagreeing with his whole worldview, I had to acknowledge that he was a great orator. He also has avoided mass-murdering his constituents, which makes him more likable than the dictators above. During a recent visit to Africa, he was greeted with cheers everywhere he went. Some people are talking about a possible presidency in his future. Those people are, of course, only trying to prepare a successor to Senator Clinton. The Republicans, though scrambling for a candidate to endorse, are not that desperate.

What is it about great orators that makes them so likable? At least I respect them more than the droning or raving politicians. On the Michael Reagan Talkshow tonight I heard a man call in with a delightful Scottish accent, and he spoke so vividly, using real life examples and making his points clearly and succinctly but still bringing a smile to my face at the cunning expressions. Except for the fact that his whole premise was wrong and I didn't agree with a thing he said, I really liked the man.

My youngest brother is a great communicator. He has an ear for metaphors. His thoughts are so often on national defense and exercise and things like slanted pockets and octagonal stiffness of his camo that I don't get to enjoy his speaking. Then I ask a question, and he doesn't say anything. We still have some breakthroughs to make there...

Another talkshow call-in asked whether young people know that they will be paying huge taxes to cover their elders' social security but will not likely receive any benefits themselves. As a young person, I do know that. I know that Iran threatens to develop nuclear weapons, and that so does North Korea. I know secular humanists have taken over the schools. Churches are watering down the gospel. Media is corrupting anyone who watches (have you seen some of the commercials on during prime family time - like college football!). And I care.

There is something called the tyranny of the urgent. Earlier this evening I posted "Is there not a cause?" There are too many causes. I cannot possibly worry about all of them without crippling my daily life. So in answer to the question about social security, yes, I know. The reason I'm not demonstrating or rioting about it is because it isn't pressing. For one day a year, the day before I cast my ballot, I pay attention. I care. I do something. The other months I take each cause as it comes.

Earlier in the week I had a lesson to teach. After hours of practicing, I got it down to the allotted 10 minutes. My voice projected, I cut down on the number of um's, and at the moment of truth everything went so quickly that I didn't have time to forget anything. God was good to help my overly-anxious self get through that.

"Let the words of my mouth,
and the meditation of my heart,
be acceptable in thy sight,
O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer."
~ Psalm 19:14

To God be all glory.

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