Dec 29

Words Worth Remembering—Addendum




Last week I posted a column by Professor Todd May titled The Weight of the Past. A reader chastised me for not just the copyright violation but for not considering the interests of Professor May. I gave thought to the copyright issue, but the blog statistics have shown that very seldom do readers click on links. Weighing that against the value of the piece that few readers would otherwise see, I chose to risk the violation in order to better the chances of readers seeing what I considered a very worthwhile piece. Thus, I now modify the piece to delete the full column and replace it with the link that you will find highlighted above. I urge those readers who missed the full column to click on the link and find Professor May’s words that are well worth the time it takes to read them.

May’s column led me to review my life where I found that my peak was my practice of draft and military law during the Vietnam War. Not only did I do something that resonated with my philosophy of life but I was able to deny the Selective Service System the cannon fodder that the flawed paranoia and machismo of the politicians in power chose to sacrifice on the altar of their power to make war. You have the chance to give thought to the peaks and valleys of your own life. I urge you to do this if you haven’t already.


    • Linda on December 30, 2013 at 18:45

    ….and thank you for all your hard work and efforts that my sons and so many others were given the benefit of choice to enlist into the military or not by doing away with the draft. Okay, so i guess I just do not like the title “The Weight of the Past” or the labeling of events in life as “peaks” because it does, if I recall the article correctly, create a “burden” if one views events in life in those terms. It can lead to “is this all there is?” attitudes and that the best of life is gone. I truly feel “best” or “peaks” are relative and change in meaning as we all change so for the most part, we may be able to find moments that are fulfilling over and over again. Snowden’s mark in history and an NFL player’s glory may never occur again in their lives, but I think they will have other moments — different but not necessarily less fulfilling. As a side note, I would hope that Todd would be quite pleased that his article as stirred thought and reflection.

      • Don Bay on December 31, 2013 at 10:48

      Indeed, Professor May’s column has stirred a number of readers to think about the peaks and valleys in their own lives. Whether one agrees or disagrees is not as important as the thoughts growing out of the professor’s words.

      My wife told me yesterday that a friend related to her what another friend had told her: that my ceramics course taught shortly after we moved here had inspired that student of mine to become a potter. That student has become one of Sweden’s foremost potters. Good for my ego and for that potter, but my years in draft and military law remain the peak of my life because it touched my life and, far more importantly, it may have saved the lives of many young men. Peaks are relative as you and Professor May pointed out.

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