New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 9, 1997, New Braunfels, Texas
4A Q Herald-Zeitung p Wednesday, April 9,1997
■ To talk with Managing Editor Micah Boyd about the Opinion page, call 625-9144, Ext. 220.
“Failure to enact strong laws is a concession that the information superhighway should belong to pornographers.”
* Cathleen Cleaver
(Kudos is a regular feature of the Herald-Zeitung in which readers can recognize the work or support of individuals and organizations in the community. Send your Kudos to: Herald-Zeitung, 707 Landa St., New Braunfels, TX 78130, or fax them to (210) 625-1224).
Kudos to Dennis Spinels, CEO of the Gruene Mansion Inn Restaurant and his sister Leslie Spinelli for giving so much to the community that they joined just a couple of years ago.
For the second year in a row, they sponsored “New Orleans in Gruene” at the Gruene Mansion Inn Restaurant to benefit the American Cancer Society Starlight Gala. Not allow us to strew confetti and bal-loons around tbei^jestaurant, but they prepared a Wonderful dinner for those attending. They donate all proceeds form the dinner to the American Cancer Society.
From all of the people here in Comal County who depend upon support from The American Cancer Society, we thank Dennis, Leslie and all of the folks who work at the Gruene Mansion Inn Restaurant.
Kathy McLeod chairman, 1997 Starlight Gala
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We must sill build those lifeboats of hope
Editor and Publisher, Ext. 301........................................Doug Toney
Managing Editor, Ext. 220...............................................Micah Boyd
Classified Advertising Manager, Ext 214...............Karen Reininger
Business Manager, Ext. 202........................................Mary Lee Hall
Circulation Director, Ext. 228...................................Carol Ann Avery
Pressroom Foreman, Ext 205..........................................Billy Parnell
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April 14, 1912, the White Star Steamer, Titanic, representing the arrogance of the industrial age, booms through the North Atlantic ice fields. Protected by sixteen watertight compartments and impenetrable metal plates, this ship, the experts say, couldn’t be sunk by God. Neglect safety drills. Ignore repeated iceberg warnings. Thunder on.
A mountain-size iceberg looms dead ahead Frantic efforts steer the massive liner to port, avoiding a head-on collision. Submerged ice rips a quarter-inch-wide, 300-foot-long gash in the ship’s hull. Metal plates buckle. Watertight compartments flood. The ship lists, then tilts forward. Twenty “more than enough” lifeboats weighed down with women and children, lower into freezing black water. Fifteen hundred souls remain on board. With a cmel rush, the ship plunges to the ocean floor. Rockets flare. Screams echo. Contrition fills the heart of the lost and of the saved.
April 9, 1997, emboldened by unprecedented freedom, we boom through an ocean of luxury. We have it better materially than the Americans who 85 years ago read about the Titanic disaster in their morning newspapers. Our poor today are rich by Third-World standards. With power as our metal plates and wealth our watertight compartments we sail on, indifferent to social icebergs.
lf we have it so good, why do so many of us feel so bad? Why drug abuse? And alcoholism? Why depression? And anxiety? Why suicide?
And homicide? Why gangs? And drive by shootings? Why marital infidelity? And divorce? Why fearful children? And rebellious teenagers? Many of us realize that our ship has reached a pivotal point. We understand the need for lifeboats
— lifeboats of hope and meaning.
Those on the Titanias doomed deck
came face to face with God. There are no atheists on sinking ships, just as there are none in foxholes. Death, pain and suffering make believers of us all. But we don’t have to wait for disaster to comprehend the great “Amen.” Our ship can come in before it goes down.
Those who experience Eternal hope have a mission — a purpose for living. They — we — work on living in the constant presence of God. Some days
— when the rain refreshes and the sun shines, flowers bloom and the grass greens — we perceive God in the simple things of life. Other days — when traffic jams and voices cry, phones reverberate and engines whine — God seems lost in the noise of life. It’s not that easy finding God in crowded rooms and on filled calendars. We have to work at it.
Having a purpose calls for serving right where we are — being present, fully present, in whatever we are doing,
making life a little bit better for the people we meet. How we live day-by-day, hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute, second-by-second determines our effectiveness in sharing goodness with others. Mountaintop experiences come horn daily climbs. Instantaneous snapshots produce big pictures. A word of encouragement, a simple act of kindness, a tender voice of praise, a smile of appreciation can change the world. Gentleness ripples from person to person growing stronger with each emanation.
All of us have a unique talent — growing a garden, baking a pie, setting a table, decorating a room, crafting a sentence, composing a song, telling a story, playing an instrument. These talents when cultivated bring pleasure to ourselves and others. Using our gift blurs time. When we lose ourselves in the refinement of our art for the glory of God and the service of others, we live on the edge of magic.
As we develop meaning in our lives, God’s spirit penetrates our consciousness. We become aware of God’s constant presence. This awareness engenders gratitude, peace and unconditional love.
Gratitude delves deeper than positive affirmations and good-nc ws- I-broke-both-legs-so-I-won ’t-have-to-go-to-jail-right-away optimism. Gratitude, a state of mind and heart that allows us to accept and forgive ourselves and others, enables us to learn from past experiences, completely enjoy the present moment, and eagerly anticipate future challenges. Gratitude — for what we
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have been given, for what we have been denied, and for what suffering has taught — brings a joyful heart and a peaceful mind.
Peace allows us to let go of fear that prevents our living a fulfilled life. When we take the risk of doing what we most want to do, situations fall into place. We find ourselves beneficiaries of coincidence — God’s way of staying anonymous. With peace there exists no failure, only delays and redirection. The courage to follow our bliss allows us to catch our dreams in flight.
These virtues — gratitude, peace, unconditional love — sound great on paper, but, in reality, are difficult to practice. A woman dying of cancer, prays that God will heal her. God, answering her prayer, appears in person, and declares, “All you have to do to get well is be grateful for your husband, live in peace with him and love him unconditionally.”
The woman responded, “Have you met my husband yet?”
Although suffering in the role of victim may be easier, at times, than finding meaning in our lives, we do have a choice. We can spend our days rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic of our lives or we can build lifeboats of hope.
(John Ingram Walker, M.D., writes a weekly column for the Herald-Zeitung.)
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison,
283 Russell Senate Office Bldg., Washington, D.C., 20510, Phone: 202-224-5922. FAX: 202-224-0776. Local Office:
8023 Vantage Drive, Suite 460, San Antonio, TX, 78230,
Sen. Phi! Gramm, 370 Russell: Senate Office Bldg., Washing- i ton, D.C. Phone: 202-224-2934, j FAX: 202-228-2856. Local Office: 404 E. Ramsey, Suite 200, San Antonio, TX, 78216, Phone: 210-366-9494, FAX: 210-366-2016.
Silent witnesses urge us to speak out against family violence
I had the privilege of participating in my first march to the state capitol on April I in an effort to speak out against family violence in Texas. Men, women and children turned out from all across Texas for this special event and marched up Congress Avenue carrying purple balloons and life-size red wooden silhouettes which make up the Silent Witness Project.
lf the statistics don’t make enough of an impact on you, the personal stories will drive the point home. The point is that too many Texas women are dying at the hands of an intimate partner every year. Each life-size red wooden figure represents a woman who once lived, worked, had neighbors, friends, family and children before her life ended violently at the hands of a husband, ex-husband, partner or acquaintance. Each silhouette bears a name and a story of a murdered woman.
In 1994, 160 women died in our state at the hands of an intimate partner. This traveling memorial was created to honor them in hopes of bringing more awareness to our citizens and lawmakers.
Today in History
The Associated Press
Today is Wednesday, April 9, the 99th day of 1997. There are 266 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On April 9, 1865, Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered his army to Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House in Virginia.
On this date:
In 1682, the French explorer Robert La Salle reached the Mississippi River.
In 1833, the nation’s first tax-supported public library was founded in Peterborough, N.H.
In 1939, singer Marian Anderson performed at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., after she was denied the use of Constitution Hall by the Daughters of the American Revolution.
Texas took (Mi the Silent Witness Project after learning of its powerful impact in other states; the power that comes when we transform homicide statistics into a moving representation of the unnecessary waste of precious life.
What an impact it made, coming up to the curb in front of the capitol and seeing IOO red silhouettes lining the pathway to the capitol steps on both sides of the walk, then to step up onto the sidewalk and walk through this silent crowd.
A woman came off the street out of a crowd of spectators as we were marching up Congress Avenue, took the arm of my co-worker and said, “I am a survivor of 20 years of domestic violence. But I got out.” Then she walked with us in silence the rest of the
In 1940, Germany invaded Denmark and Norway.
In 1942, during World War II, American and Philippine defenders on Bataan capitulated to Japanese forces; the surrender was followed by the notorious “Bataan Death March” which claimed nearly 10,000 lives.
In 1947, a series of tornadoes in Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas claimed 169 lives.
In 1959, NASA announced the selection of America’s first seven astronauts: Scott Carpenter, Gordon Cooper, John Glenn, Gus Grissom, Wally Schirra, Alan Shepard and Donald Slayton.
In 1963, British statesman Winston Churchill was made an honorary U.S. citizen.
In 1983, the space shuttle Challenger ended its first mission with a safe landing at Edwards Air Force Base in Cal-
When we got to the Capitol, two women were there reading the names of these 160 women. Standing close by me was a man, standing along, holding a silhouette. I read the inscription on the plaque, “Michelle Gomez, 24, Austin - March 24, 1994. Michelle, a mother of two young girts, tried eveTything to get protection from her abusive husband, who threatened to kill her. She obtained a divorce, a protective order and filed stalking charges. Still, he waited for her outside her workplace and shot her to death, He then turned the gun on himself, committing suicide."
Soon after, three young girls came running up, accompanied by an older woman. The youngest child, pointing to the silhouette, asked the man, “Who is that?” “This is your Momma,” he replied.
We can find these stones even closer to home, too. Silhouette No. 17 reads “Lucinda Hines, 35, Canyon Lake -March 8,1994. Lucinda's ex-husband killed her with gunshots to tire face while the couple’s 13-year-o!d daugh-
Ten years ago: Responding to charges of bugging at .the new U.S. Embassy in Moscow, Soviet officials displayed microphones and other gadgets they said were found in Soviet missions in the United States.
Five years ago: Former Panamanian mler Manuel Noriega was convicted in Miami of eight drug and racketeering charges; he is serving a 40-year prison sentence. Britain’s Conservatives came from behind to become the first British political party to win four straight elections this century.
One year ago: In a dramatic shift of purse-string power, President Clinton signed a line-item veto bill into law. Dan Rostenkowski, the once-power-ful House Ways and Means chairman, pleaded guilty to two mail fraud charges in a deal that brought with it a
ter watched. He then fled in Lucinda’s car and committed suicide when the police stopped him.”
One out of every three Americans has witnessed an incident of domestic violence, but many of these people don’t know how to take action. The effects are devastating on the women who face the problem and the children and family members who witness it. Efforts such as the Silent Witness Project are hoping to bring this problem to the forefront and let people know it’s time to talk about it and to take action. There’s no excuse not to.
At the Comal County Women’s Center, we are working at every level to build a world in which families are free from violence and terror. Call 620-7520 if you need help or if you want to help.
The Silent Witness Project will debut at our nation’s capitol on Oct. 18,1997. For more information about this project, call the Texas Council on Family Violence at (512) 794-1133.
(Michelle Barr is program coordinator and counselor, M. Ed., for the Comal County Women s Center.)
17-month prison term.
Today’s Birthdays: Former U.S Sen. Abraham A. Ribicoff, D-Conn., i 87. Playboy magazine founder Hug Hefner is 71. Satirist Tom Lehrer i 69. Singer-songwriter Carl Perkins i 65. Actor Jean Paul Belmondo is 6^ Comedian Avery Schreiber is 6z Actress Michael Learned is 58. Gout try singer Margo Smith is 55. Countr singer Hal Ketchum is 44. Actor Der nis Quaid is 43. Golfer Severian Ballesteros is 40. Actress-model Paul na Porizkova is 32. Rock singer Kevi Martin (Candlebox) is 28. Actres Keshia Knight Pulliam is 18.
Thought for Today: “Here is th lesson I teamed in the army, if yo want to do a thing badly, you have t work at it as though you want to do well.” — Peter Ustinov, British acto