Thursday, June 28, 2012

Oh, to be King Lion!

Oh, I can't wait to be king!

Say what you want, not what you don't want

Lions Clubs International Automotive Products

For your daily commute, while running errands, or on your summer road trip, you can find a great selection of automotive items at the Lions Shop!

Trunk Organizer
To order these and other fine products, visit our online Lions Shop
In addition to our online selection of products you can also shop directly through our Official Licensees for many other Lions products.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Induction/Initiation on June 25, 2012

The Rainier Lions Club initiated 3 new members, Ronald Lind, Brenda Flaherty & Chris Fanton.  We also inducted our officers for the year 2012 - 2013.  Jim Labelle presided over the induction/initiations.  Evan Burnett made a nice "outgoing King Lion" speach and incoming King Lion, George Johnson followed up with a speach.  All in allk it was a very nice meeting.

Several of our members received awards.  Bernice & Chris Beck, Art & Charlotte Runyan, Larry Warner, Shirley Gibson, Evan Burnett, Linda Lazelle, Rodney Mitchell, Beverly Jolley, George & Linda Johnson, Gene Cinchovich & Charlene Logan. 

Our officers starting July 1, 2012 are:

President                       George Johnson
Vice President               Evan Burnett
Treasurer                       Linda Lazelle
Secretary                       Linda Johnson
Tail Twister                  Victoria Fanton
Membership Retention Victoria Fanton
Lion Tamer                   Larry Warner

We were served pizza, salad and strawberry shortcake.  We had several guests attend.  Frank & Shelia Pierce attended.  Frank promoted the following Tacoma Southeast Lions Clubs events:

Hot Rod, Rat Rod, Custom / Modified Car Show on July 22, 2012 from 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM at Griots Garage and Events Center in Tacoma.  Awards are at 1:30 PM  to register your car call 253.476.4664

Soup Frenzy & Silent Auction on Saturday September 29, 2012 at the AmVets Hall -
5717 South Tyler Street  Tacoma, WA 98409

Thank you all for your attendance at our special event!

Einstein on Simplicity....

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

International Literacy Day

Lions Children First
For more than 45 years, “International Literacy Day” has been observed on September 8th to bring attention to the importance of literacy. To celebrate this important occasion, the Grand Cayman Lions Club spent the day at the George Town Primary School. Lions read stories aloud to the children, who then took turns reading to Lions. By engaging the students, the Grand Cayman Lions encouraged them to pick up books and read to each other.

A Hero is...

"A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles" ~ Christopher Reeve

Saturday, June 23, 2012

95th LCI International Convention

The people of Busan welcomed our 95th International Convention with open arms. Throughout the city, the Lions Clubs International logo greeted the more than 55,000 registered attendees.Busan Welcomes Lions Clubs International (9 photos)

Opening of Internationa Convention....

Drummers warming up for the Opening Plenary Session at the International Convention, which began on June 23, 2012.

Successful People

Thursday, June 21, 2012


In El Salvador, 37 percent of students at the Eugenia de Duenas School of the Blind are blind because of Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) - a condition that occurs in premature babies' eyes. The severe scarring from ROP can quickly cause blindness if it is not diagnosed and treated in time. To save the sight of premature infants with ROP, the Lions Club of San Salvador worked with SightFirst to purchase equipment for a children's hospital in San Salvador to treat ROP and retinoblastoma, a cancer of the eye. Since April 2011, the hospital has saved the sight of more than 100 patients

iPad for the Blind

On June 5 an iPAD (with headphones) was presented to a Richardson ISD student by her vision teacher, Laura Lemaster. Lemaster, also a member of the Dallas White Rock Lions Club, and a volunteer with Dallas Association for the Blind, partnered ...with the Richardson Host and Richardson Midday Lions Clubs to purchase and present the device to the student, who will now be able to access print materials and textbooks by hearing them at home. This will have a very positive impact on this child's education as she begins to learn Braille.

Lions Clubs: One Shot, One Life: Lions Measles Initiative Challenge Grant Message

LCIF and Lions are collaborating with the Measles Initiative partners to rescue children worldwide from measles. Measles is one of the world's deadliest vaccine preventable diseases: 450 children die each day. Yet, for less than US$1, we can vaccinate one child for life. Help us save 157 million children this year. Be a part of the solution through the One Shot, One Life: Lions Measles Initiative by supporting LCIF through the Gates Foundation Challenge Grant. For every $2 raised by Lions, the Gates Foundation will donate US$1. Together, LCIF and the Gates Foundation will provide a total of US$15 million to fight measles this year. Learn more at

Monday, June 18, 2012

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Volunteers Needed for Project New Hope

Volunteers Needed

Project New Hope WA Retreat Camps 
For all Military veterans & their families 
Elbow Lake WA – Approximately 11 miles out of Yelm 
July 13-15 & August 10 – 12, 2012   Need Leo Clubs & young adults to work with teens. 
We need 45 Volunteers.  Retreat is 10 couples & their children.  Our Volunteer needs are 
  • 1 nurse 
  • 2 Special Ed Volunteers 
  • 4 fishing buddies for the kids 
  • 4 Volunteers for kids swimming (life guards on duty) 
  • 3 hiking buddies 
  • 1 person to put up directional signs (signs supplied) before noon on Friday 
  • 4 Friday Volunteers, 2:30 pm directing veterans to Cascade Camp, help with parking, assisting families if they need help. 1 registration volunteer (3) on Friday 
  • 10 Arts & Crafts Volunteers along with 1 to 1 ratio for infants to 3 yrs  
  • 6 Volunteers needed for teens for the weekend. Spots equipment is free for our use at camp.  There is a tennis courts, basketball hoops, swimming, kayak/canoe, hiking trails, all available to us. 
  • 6-7 Volunteers on Sunday at 1:00 pm, Inspect, check rooms, pick up, clean up and pack up. 
  • 2 Volunteers Sunday to unload at storage sites, Bucknell’s and McDermott’s.   
 Our families and their children eat their meals together. After meals parents bring their children to volunteers so we can entertain them while parents are in their selected sessions.  Parents pick up their children when their sessions are over.  Saturday, we stress during Outdoor Activities, the parents take their children as this is their bonding time.            
To Register go to:  Click on Volunteer or
Volunteer Schedules
Kids Camp

Friday, July 13 Saturday, July 14 Sunday, July 15
3:00–5:00 pm – Registration 8:00 – 9:00 am - Breakfast 8:00 - 9:00 am - Breakfast
5:30 – 6:45 pm – Dinner 9:00–11:45 am–Adult Sessions 9:00 -11:45 am-Adult Sessions
6:45 – 9:00 pm–Adult Sessions 9:00 –11:45 am – Kids camp 9:00 - 11:45 am – Kids camp
6:45 – 9:00 pm – Kids camp 10:15 – 11:45 am – Kids fishing 10:15 - 11:45 am – Kids fishing 
9:00 pm – Volunteers done 12 Noon – Lunch 12 Noon - Lunch
  1:00 - 2:30 pm - Kids Camp 1:00 pm – Retreat Over
  1:00 – 2:30 pm – Horse rides  
  1:00- 5:00 pm – Family Outdoor
Note: Volunteers invited to 1:00 – 5:00 pm – Family Swimming
 Join families for meals 5:30 – 6:45 pm – Dinner  
  7:00 – 8:30 pm–Adult Sessions  
  7:00 - 8:30 pm – Kids camp  
  9:00 pm – Family bonfire  
  9:00 pm – Volunteers done  


Be the Change You Want to See in the World

George and I attended a "Membership Retention" meeting and Nick & Sugar Murphy's house last Tuesday night.  We discussed the importance of social media like Facebook, blogs, websites and joining our local Chamber of Commerce.  Without an active presence, people won't know about Lions Clubs and everything our members do.

This isn't "just a volunteer" organization, it's an active group comprised of passionate, caring citizens.  Every time there is an activity or fundraiser, our individual members decide the success or failure by their contributions - of time, work & effort.  You - the members - are what makes the difference. 

The Lions Clubs have been a successful organization for almost a century.  Collectively, Lions have had a dynamic & positive impact all over the whole world.  This change has only been possible because of people like you.  YOU!!  You are important, so roll up your sleeves!  Every thing you do, or don't do impacts our group and society, so "be the change you want to see in the world." 

Our Lions community needs engaged citizens committed to making a positive difference in our area.  We need an army of members and friends.  Will you help?  Find your niche?  Will you commit to it? Will you help me spread the word?  If so, we can send a powerful message to our communities: WE SERVE!

In our neighborhoods: WE SERVE!
In our cities: WE SERVE!
For the sight impaired: WE SERVE!
For the hearing impaired: WE SERVE!
For the elderly: WE SERVE!
For the poor: WE SERVE!

I’m asking for your help and support. Because no one on earth has the optimism of an Lion Club member; and no one works harder. And no one believes in themselves more than Lions, and no one is more determined. And one thing I know and believe with all my heart is no amount of money or power on earth can measure up to an army of independent Lions and our friends!

Portrait of Melvin Jones

A member of the Lions Club of Calicut Silver Hills made this portrait of Melvin Jones using only the name of his club.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Lions Clubs International Foundation

The Rainier Lions Club is one of thousands of Lions Clubs that belongs to Lions Clubs International.

Lions Clubs Internationl was founded in 1917 - In Chicago, Illinois.
Melvin Jones, a 38-year-old Chicago business leader, asked a simple and world-changing question – what if people put their talents to work improving their communities? Almost 100 years later, Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organization, with 1.35 million members in more than 46,000 clubs and countless stories of Lions acting on the same simple idea: let's improve our communities.


Whenever a Lions club gets together, problems get smaller. And communities get better. Our 45,000 clubs and more than 1.35 million members make us the world's largest service club organization.
Mission:  To empower volunteers to serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace and promote international understanding through Lions clubs.
Company Overview:   Lions meet the needs of local communities and the world. Our 1.35 million members in 206 countries and geographic areas conduct vision, hearing and diabetes screenings, support eye hospitals, award scholarships, build parks, help youth and provide help in time of disaster.
General Information:  Lions are groups of service-minded men and women who are interested in doing volunteer work to improve their communities. Membership is by invitation. If you're interested in being invited to join an existing Lions club, go to our Web site and select "Find a Club." Contact a club near you and express your interest in becoming a member.

Since its beginning, Lions Clubs International has maintained a     strong mission, expressed in our motto, "We Serve." The slogan of the Lions Clubs is:

L iberty I ntelligence O ur N ation's S afety

The official colors of Lions Clubs International are purple(for loyalty and integrity) and gold (for sincerity, liberality, purity, and generosity). Preservation of sight and hearing are two of the major goals of Lions Clubs International. Membership is open to men and women of legal majority and good reputation in the community, and is by invitation only. Those interested in membership should contact their local Lions Club.
Please join us in bringing hope and change to communities everyday, everywhere.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Centre for Tagore studies in Edinburgh

By:  Hasan Suroor


BEYOND WORDS: In this rare photograph from The Hindu’s archives, Helen Keller, the blind American author and labour rights activist, greets Rabindranath Tagore at a meeting in New York in 1930. Tuesday, May 8, 2012, marked the culmination of the year-long 150th birth anniversary celebrations of Gurudev.
BEYOND WORDS: In this rare photograph from The Hindu’s archives, Helen Keller, the blind American author and labour rights activist, greets Rabindranath Tagore at a meeting in New York in 1930. Tuesday, May 8, 2012, marked the culmination of the year-long 150th birth anniversary celebrations of Gurudev.
A major university Centre dedicated to the life and works of Rabindranath Tagore has opened in Edinburgh, Scotland, to mark the Nobel Laureate’s 150th birth anniversary.

Professor Indra Nath Choudhuri, Academic Director of the Indira Gandhi Institute, will be Scotland’s first Chair in Tagore Studies.

The Scottish Centre for Tagore Studies (ScoTs) at Edinburgh Napier University’s Institute of Creative Industries, which has the second largest Indian student population of any Scottish university, will “promote Indian culture, education, philosophy, art and literature by highlighting Tagore’s legacy’’.

The University said Tagore had “strong links’’ with Scotland, mainly through his friendship with Sir Patrick Geddes, who designed Visva-Bharati at Santiniketan.

“ScoTs will celebrate the life, teaching and vision of Rabrindranath Tagore, whose spirit continues to inspire,’’ said Dr. Bashabi Fraser, Lecturer in Literature and Creative Writing at the University.

She said the Centre was ideally placed to promote cultural connections between Scotland and India
“By working alongside other European organisations and cultural bodies we’ll be able to spread Tagore’s influence and attract research interest from far and wide,” Dr. Fraser said.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs in the Scottish Government, described Tagore as India’s “greatest artist, musician and poet’’.

“He had many close ties to Scotland. ScoTs will celebrate these connections and Tagore’s legacy, deepening the relationship between our two countries. I am delighted that the centre is being launched in this, our Year of Creative Scotland,” she said.

The Centre has been set up under an agreement with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), which is funding two PhD fellowships in Tagore studies.

....will bring Professor Indra Nath Choudhuri, Academic Director of the Indira Gandhi Institute, to the University as Scotland’s first Chair in Tagore Studies.

The ICCR is also funding two PhD fellowships dedicated to researching the works of the influential author. (ends)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Lions Club International Crowns Beauty Queen

MISS LIONS CLUB International Philippines candidates
MISS LIONS CLUB International Philippines candidates

MANILA, Philippines — The Lions Club International, in cooperation with Miss World Philippines, Miss Earth Philippines and Mutya ng Pilipinas, Inc., will hold the coronation night of the Miss Lions Club International Philippines 2012 on May 24, 2012, at the Centennial Hall of the Manila Hotel.
Nineteen lovely and talented contestants, who come from different Lions districts across the country, will vie for the title and the winner will receive cash, other prizes and the chance to represent the esteemed organization, making people aware of its many humanitarian endeavors.
The Miss Lions Club International Philippines was conceived by the Lions of Multiple District 301 Philippines, through the incumbent Council of Governors, under the chairmanship of First Lady Marlan S. Manguba, multi-awarded Lions leader and wife of District Governor Alexander L. Manguba of District 301-A2 among many others. This is to promote and develop the youth, nurture their talents, and leave a mark in the history of the Philippine Lions not only through community services but also through activities. This activity aims to generate awareness of the Multiple District Tree Planting Project dubbed as the Lions Sanctuary in Taal Volcano Island, San Nicolas, Batangas.
Contestants include Amanda Arbitrario, Pristine Joy Cunanan, Merocel Loreta, Ge Ann Pilapil, Zoj Daphne Usita, Kumi Miyamae, Darlene Hipolito, Jaymarose Marasigan, Maretony Baldoza, Mikki Sachiko S. Flores, Gabrielle Tilokani, Mae Angeline Cajucom, Jessica Arqueza, Jennyline Malpaya, Ethel Jane Catchuela, Paula Camille E. Marciano, Ria Delos Santos, Rufaida Babudin and Larah Grace Lacap.
Miss Lions Club International Philippines 2012 Pageant is sponsored by Anchor Land Holdings, Inc. Pro Couture Frontliner Timeless, Benn Monyography, Jewelmer, Ever Bilena, Blackwater for Men, The Fashion Academy Manila, The Sulo Riviera Hotel, The Manila Hotel, Arielle Agasang House of Couture, Slimmers World, The Camworx Production, Red Damien Studios, Regency Lagoon Resort, RCBC, Dr. Charlie Mendez, Adam and Eve, Jojie Simpauco Salon, Reyes Haircutters, Konsepto Photos, Asian Massage, Slim N Light, Gluta White & Firm, Ainol Philippines, Bayview Park Hotel Manila, Figlia and St. Francis Square.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Folsom Inmates Help the Blind -- Lions Clubs Video

In California, Lions are helping Folsom State Prison inmates give back to society by creating educational tools and materials for the blind and visually impaired.

White Lion

Video of the Week: Vaccines and the Heroes of Honduras

Video of the Week: Vaccines and the Heroes of Honduras

“Vaccines are working in Honduras, and all around the world they are saving lives and are ensuring our kids will grow strong,” says the narrator in this video from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
The Gates Foundation has awarded $5 million to LCIF — the largest donation in Foundation history. This challenge grant will be used to match $1 for every $2 Lions raise to help eliminate measles.

Donations toward this effort now total $4,002,296. Help save the lives of millions of children through One Shot, One Life: Lions Measles Initiative.

Can you believe it? Nearly 21,000 children under five died every day in 2010.

That’s about 12,000 fewer a day than in 1990. But with a coordinated effort, we can end preventable child deaths. Please share!

Yelm Chamber of Commerce News for June 14, 2012

Mark you calendar for this coming Thursday, June 14 -- We will start the day with a Flag Day Ceremony at Yelm City Park. Begins at 11am. Honoring all those that continue to keep protect our freedoms. Then join us at The Bunkhouse for our afterhours from 5:30-7:00pm

The Pediatric Cataract Initiative Gives Sight in Nepal

In this video, learn how a child from India receives the gift of sight at the Lumbini Eye Institute in Nepal. Her surgery is made possible through the Pediatric Cataract Initiative, a partnership between Lions Clubs International Foundation and Bausch + Lomb. Every year, hundreds of thousands of babies around the world are affected by pediatric cataract, meaning that they are born with or develop a cataract in one or both eyes. This can lead to severe vision loss -- or even blindness.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Story of the Week: Call Your U.S. Representative Now About the LCI Coin Act

by lionsclubsorg

During the past year, Lions around the country have tirelessly worked to create a collectible coin to celebrate our organization’s 100th birthday in 2017. Together, we are close to making the Lions Clubs International Century of Service Commemorative Coin Act a reality.

We’re just a few weeks away from the House of Representative’s vote on this bill. Because all commemorative coins created by the U.S. Mint require an act of Congress, your support is vital to this bill’s success. The bill requires 290 Representative co-sponsors. To find out if your U.S. Representative supports H.R. 2139, check our map. States shaded blue have 100 percent support for the bill.

If your legislator does not support the bill, please contact your representative today. Without any cost to taxpayers, the sale of the coin would provide the Lions Clubs International Foundation with US$8 million. These funds will help LCIF further its programs for the visually impaired, disabled, youth and those affected by a major disaster. Find out how you can help by visiting our action center

Black Lion

Monday, June 11, 2012

Bluegrass 20th Anniversary Mugs

TjheBluegrass20th anniversary commemorative mugs can be purchased at the Rainier Hardware Store in Rainier, Washington.  The mugs are cobalt blue with microwaveable gold logos on each side.  The cost is $10.00 for each mug. 

Thank you for your contributions and support.  Proceeds from all Rainier Lions Club activities are used to support our community, charities and other non-profit groups.  (You'll find a list
of these groups on the Rainier Lions Club flyer that will be inserted with your July Rainier Water Bill.)

Thank you again.

Texas A&M Commencement Address

The students gave a standing ovation; the faculty were deathly silent!

Neal Boortz is a Texan, a lawyer, a Texas Aggie (Texas A&M) graduate, and now a nationally syndicated talk show host from Atlanta . His commencement address to the graduates of a recent Texas A&M class is far different from what either the students or the faculty expected. Whether you agree or disagree, his views are certainly thought provoking.
"I am honored by the invitation to address you on this occasion. It's about time. Be warned, however, that I am not here to impress you; you'll have enough smoke blown up your bloomers today. And you can bet your tassels I'm not here to impress the faculty and administration. You may not like much of what I have to say, and that's fine. You will remember it though. Especially after about 10 years out there in the real world. This, it goes without saying, does not apply to those of you who will seek your careers and your fortunes as government employees.
This gowned gaggle behind me is your faculty. You've heard the old saying that those who can - do. Those who can't - teach. That sounds deliciously insensitive. But there is often raw truth in insensitivity, just as you often find feel-good falsehoods and lies in compassion. Say good-bye to your faculty because now you are getting ready to go out there and do. These folks behind me are going to stay right here and teach.
By the way, just because you are leaving this place with a diploma doesn't mean the learning is over. When an FAA flight examiner handed me my private pilot's license many years ago, he said, “Here, this is your ticket to learn.” The same can be said for your diploma. Believe me, the learning has just begun.
Now, I realize that most of you consider yourselves Liberals. In fact, you are probably very proud of your liberal views. You care so much. You feel so much. You want to help so much. After all, you're a compassionate and caring person, aren't you now? Well, isn't that just so extraordinarily special. Now, at this age, is as good a time as any to be a liberal; as good a time as any to know absolutely everything. You have plenty of time, starting tomorrow, for the truth to set in.
Over the next few years, as you begin to feel the cold breath of reality down your neck, things are going to start changing pretty fast... Including your own assessment of just how much you really know.
So here are the first assignments for your initial class in reality: Pay attention to the news, read newspapers, and listen to the words and phrases that proud Liberals use to promote their causes. Then, compare the words of the left to the words and phrases you hear from those evil, heartless, greedy conservatives. From the Left you will hear "I feel." From the Right you will hear "I think." From the Liberals you will hear references to groups -- The Blacks, the Poor, the Rich, the Disadvantaged, the Less Fortunate. From the Right you will hear references to individuals. On the Left you hear talk of group rights; on the Right, individual rights.
That about sums it up, really: Liberals feel. Liberals care. They are pack animals whose identity is tied up in group dynamics. Conservatives think -- and, setting aside the theocracy crowd, their identity is centered on the individual.
Liberals feel that their favored groups have enforceable rights to the property and services of productive individuals. Conservatives, I among them I might add, think that individuals have the right to protect their lives and their property from the plunder of the masses.
In college you developed a group mentality, but if you look closely at your diplomas you will see that they have your individual names on them. Not the name of your school mascot, or of your fraternity or sorority, but your name. Your group identity is going away. Your recognition and appreciation of your individual identity starts now.
If, by the time you reach the age of 30, you do not consider yourself to be a conservative, rush right back here as quickly as you can and apply for a faculty position. These people will welcome you with open arms. They will welcome you, that is, so long as you haven't developed an individual identity. Once again you will have to be willing to sign on to the group mentality you embraced during the past four years.
Something is going to happen soon that is going to really open your eyes. You're going to actually get a full time job!
You're also going to get a lifelong work partner. This partner isn't going to help you do your job. This partner is just going to sit back and wait for payday. This partner doesn't want to share in your effort, but in your earnings.
Your new lifelong partner is actually an agent; an agent representing a strange and diverse group of people; an agent for every teenager with an illegitimate child; an agent for a research scientist who wanted to make some cash answering the age-old question of why monkeys grind their teeth. An agent for some poor demented hippie who considers herself to be a meaningful and talented artist, but who just can't manage to sell any of her artwork on the open market.
Your new partner is an agent for every person with limited, if any, job skills, but who wanted a job at City Hall. An agent for tin-horn dictators in fancy military uniforms grasping for American foreign aid. An agent for multi-million dollar companies who want someone else to pay for their overseas advertising. An agent for everybody who wants to use the unimaginable power of this agent's for their personal enrichment and benefit.
That agent is our wonderful, caring, compassionate, oppressive government. Believe me, you will be awed by the unimaginable power this agent has. Power that you do not have. A power that no individual has, or will have. This agent has the legal power to use force, deadly force to accomplish its goals.
You have no choice here. Your new friend is just going to walk up to you, introduce itself rather gruffly, hand you a few forms to fill out, and move right on in. Say hello to your own personal one ton gorilla. It will sleep anywhere it wants to.
Now, let me tell you, this agent is not cheap. As you become successful it will seize about 40% of everything you earn. And no, I'm sorry, there just isn't any way you can fire this agent of plunder, and you can't decrease its share of your income. That power rests with him, not you.
So, here I am saying negative things to you about government. Well, be clear on this: It is not wrong to distrust government. It is not wrong to fear government. In certain cases it is not even wrong to despise government for government is inherently evil. Yes, a necessary evil, but dangerous nonetheless, somewhat like a drug. Just as a drug that in the proper dosage can save your life, an overdose of government can be fatal.
Now let's address a few things that have been crammed into your minds at this university. There are some ideas you need to expunge as soon as possible. These ideas may work well in academic environment, but they fail miserably out there in the real world.
First is that favorite buzz word of the media and academia: Diversity! You have been taught that the real value of any group of people - be it a social group, an employee group, a management group, whatever - is based on diversity. This is a favored liberal ideal because diversity is based not on an individuals abilities or character, but on a person's identity and status as a member of a group. Yes, it's that liberal group identity thing again.
Within the great diversity movement group identification - be it racial, gender based, or some other minority status - means more than the individuals integrity, character or other qualifications.
Brace yourself. You are about to move from this academic atmosphere where diversity rules, to a workplace and a culture where individual achievement and excellence actually count. No matter what your professors have taught you over the last four years, you are about to learn that diversity is absolutely no replacement for excellence, ability, and individual hard work. From this day on every single time you hear the word "diversity" you can rest assured that there is someone close by who is determined to rob you of every vestige of individuality you possess.
We also need to address this thing you seem to have about "rights." We have witnessed an obscene explosion of so-called "rights" in the last few decades, usually emanating from college campuses.
You know the mantra: You have the right to a job. The right to a place to live. The right to a living wage. The right to health care. The right to an education. You probably even have your own pet right - the right to a Beemer for instance, or the right to have someone else provide for that child you plan on downloading in a year or so.
Forget it. Forget those rights! I'll tell you what your rights are. You have a right to live free, and to the results of 60% -75% of your labor. I'll also tell you have no right to any portion of the life or labor of another.
You may, for instance, think that you have a right to health care. After all, President Obama said so, didn't he? But you cannot receive health-care unless some doctor or health practitioner surrenders some of his time - his life - to you. He may be willing to do this for compensation, but that's his choice. You have no "right" to his time or property. You have no right to his or any other person's life or to any portion thereof.
You may also think you have some "right" to a job; a job with a living wage, whatever that is. Do you mean to tell me that you have a right to force your services on another person, and then the right to demand that this person compensate you with their money? Sorry, forget it. I am sure you would scream if some urban outdoors men (that would be "homeless person" for those of you who don't want to give these less fortunate people a romantic and adventurous title) came to you and demanded his job and your money.
The people who have been telling you about all the rights you have are simply exercising one of theirs - the right to be imbeciles. Their being imbeciles didn't cost anyone else either property or time. It's their right, and they exercise it brilliantly.
By the way, did you catch my use of the phrase "less fortunate" a bit ago when I was talking about the urban outdoors men? That phrase is a favorite of the Left. Think about it, and you'll understand why.
To imply that one person is homeless, destitute, dirty, drunk, spaced out on drugs, unemployable, and generally miserable because he is "less fortunate" is to imply that a successful person - one with a job, a home and a future - is in that position because he or she was "fortunate." The dictionary says that fortunate means "having derived good from an unexpected place." There is nothing unexpected about deriving good from hard work. There is also nothing unexpected about deriving misery from choosing drugs, alcohol, and the street.
If the Liberal Left can create the common perception that success and failure are simple matters of "fortune" or "luck," then it is easy to promote and justify their various income redistribution schemes. After all, we are just evening out the odds a little bit. This "success equals luck" idea the liberals like to push is seen everywhere. Former Democratic presidential candidate Richard Gephardt refers to high-achievers as "people who have won life's lottery." He wants you to believe they are making the big bucks because they are lucky. It's not luck, my friends. It's choice. One of the greatest lessons I ever learned was in a book by Og Mandino, entitled, "The Greatest Secret in the World." The lesson? Very simple: "Use wisely your power of choice."
That bum sitting on a heating grate, smelling like a wharf rat? He's there by choice. He is there because of the sum total of the choices he has made in his life. This truism is absolutely the hardest thing for some people to accept, especially those who consider themselves to be victims of something or other - victims of discrimination, bad luck, the system, capitalism, whatever. After all, nobody really wants to accept the blame for his or her position in life. Not when it is so much easier to point and say, "Look! He did this to me!" than it is to look into a mirror and say, "You S. O. B.! You did this to me!"
The key to accepting responsibility for your life is to accept the fact that your choices, every one of them, are leading you inexorably to either success or failure, however you define those terms.
Some of the choices are obvious: Whether or not to stay in school. Whether or not to get pregnant. Whether or not to hit the bottle. Whether or not to keep this job you hate until you get another better-paying job. Whether or not to save some of your money, or saddle yourself with huge payments for that new car.
Some of the choices are seemingly insignificant: Whom to go to the movies with. Whose car to ride home in. Whether to watch the tube tonight, or read a book on investing. But, and you can be sure of this, each choice counts. Each choice is a building block - some large, some small. But each one is a part of the structure of your life. If you make the right choices, or if you make more right choices than wrong ones, something absolutely terrible may happen to you. Something unthinkable. You, my friend, could become one of the hated, the evil, the ugly, the feared, the filthy, the successful, the rich.
The rich basically serve two purposes in this country. First, they provide the investments, the investment capital, and the brains for the formation of new businesses. Businesses that hire people. Businesses that send millions of paychecks home each week to the un-rich.
Second, the rich are a wonderful object of ridicule, distrust, and hatred. Few things are more valuable to a politician than the envy most Americans feel for the evil rich.
Envy is a powerful emotion. Even more powerful than the emotional minefield that surrounded Bill Clinton when he reviewed his last batch of White House interns. Politicians use envy to get votes and power. And they keep that power by promising the envious that the envied will be punished: "The rich will pay their fair share of taxes if I have anything to do with it." The truth is that the top 10% of income earners in this country pays almost 50% of all income taxes collected. I shudder to think what these job producers would be paying if our tax system were any more "fair."
You have heard, no doubt, that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Interestingly enough, our government's own numbers show that many of the poor actually get richer, and that quite a few of the rich actually get poorer. But for the rich who do actually get richer, and the poor who remain poor .. there's an explanation -- a reason. The rich, you see, keep doing the things that make them rich; while the poor keep doing the things that make them poor.
Speaking of the poor, during your adult life you are going to hear an endless string of politicians bemoaning the plight of the poor. So, you need to know that under our government's definition of "poor" you can have a $5 million net worth, a $300,000 home and a new $90,000 Mercedes, all completely paid for. You can also have a maid, cook, and valet, and a million in your checking account, and you can still be officially defined by our government as "living in poverty." Now there's something you haven't seen on the evening news.
How does the government pull this one off? Very simple, really. To determine whether or not some poor soul is "living in poverty," the government measures one thing -- just one thing. Income.
It doesn't matter one bit how much you have, how much you own, how many cars you drive or how big they are, whether or not your pool is heated, whether you winter in Aspen and spend the summers in the Bahamas, or how much is in your savings account. It only matters how much income you claim in that particular year. This means that if you take a one-year leave of absence from your high-paying job and decide to live off the money in your savings and checking accounts while you write the next great American novel, the government says you are living in poverty."
This isn't exactly what you had in mind when you heard these gloomy statistics, is it? Do you need more convincing? Try this. The government's own statistics show that people who are said to be "living in poverty" spend more than $1.50 for each dollar of income they claim. Something is a bit fishy here. Just remember all this the next time Charles Gibson tells you about some hideous new poverty statistics.
Why has the government concocted this phony poverty scam? Because the government needs an excuse to grow and to expand its social welfare programs, which translates into an expansion of its power. If the government can convince you, in all your compassion, that the number of "poor" is increasing, it will have all the excuse it needs to sway an electorate suffering from the advanced stages of Obsessive-Compulsive Compassion Disorder.
I'm about to be stoned by the faculty here. They've already changed their minds about that honorary degree I was going to get. That's OK, though. I still have my PhD. in Insensitivity from the Neal Boortz Institute for Insensitivity Training. I learned that, in short, sensitivity sucks. It's a trap. Think about it - the truth knows no sensitivity. Life can be insensitive. Wallow too much in sensitivity and you'll be unable to deal with life, or the truth, so get over it.
Now, before the dean has me shackled and hauled off, I have a few random thoughts.
* You need to register to vote, unless you are on welfare. If you are living off the efforts of others, please do us the favor of sitting down and shutting up until you are on your own again.
* When you do vote, your votes for the House and the Senate are more important than your vote for President. The House controls the purse strings, so concentrate your awareness there.
* Liars cannot be trusted, even when the liar is the President of the country. If someone can't deal honestly with you, send them packing.
* Don't bow to the temptation to use the government as an instrument of plunder. If it is wrong for you to take money from someone else who earned it -- to take their money by force for your own needs -- then it is certainly just as wrong for you to demand that the government step forward and do this dirty work for you.
* Don't look in other people's pockets. You have no business there. What they earn is theirs. What you earn is yours. Keep it that way. Nobody owes you anything, except to respect your privacy and your rights, and leave you the hell alone.
* Speaking of earning, the revered 40-hour workweek is for losers. Forty hours should be considered the minimum, not the maximum. You don't see highly successful people clocking out of the office every afternoon at five. The losers are the ones caught up in that afternoon rush hour. The winners drive home in the dark.
* Free speech is meant to protect unpopular speech. Popular speech, by definition, needs no protection.
* Finally (and aren't you glad to hear that word), as Og Mandino wrote,
1. Proclaim your rarity. Each of you is a rare and unique human being.
2. Use wisely your power of choice.
3. Go the extra mile, drive home in the dark.
Oh, and put off buying a television set as long as you can. Now, if you have any idea at all what's good for you, you will get out of here and never come back. Class dismissed"