law enforcement Posts

Jesus in the Kudzu

Jesus in Kudzu

Jesus in the Kudzu


He wears tats upon his thin frame and silver studs on his lips. His jeans fall inches below his gray Calvin underwear. The first day I spoke with him, he wasn’t wearing a shirt. He was standing in his driveway talking to his wife. She’s a pretty gal with stylish short hair, manicured hands and glossy red lips. She fits into this suburban neighborhood of ours, the one I call Trumanville because every house and family looks so much like the other one.

Except for theirs.

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Insights from the Mailbag



There are other voices that don’t get the exposure that mine manages to. The voices of people who aren’t writers by trade but have such valuable things to say. They’ve written to me this week, in wake of the CNN essay & appearance. I share them with you here because their stories deserve telling and well, because it is helpful to understanding one another, these stories of ours. Burned in my memory as I read their stories is one I tell of my friend Cammie, who was just a bitty baby when her father, so handsome, so young, was slain in Vietnam. We stood in that field overlooking the Ia Drang Valley, she grasping her father’s cracked-leather wallet and his picture, as she wept bitter tears and called out to the heavens: Why? Why? What was it all for?  That was the question that ought to be asked before we voters allow Congress to send our troops to war. It should not be the question children of the fallen wrestle with throughout their lives. We owe them a better answer than: We made a mistake. These mistakes of ours are paid for in bloodshed, paid for by the lives of soldiers fallen and widows and children.

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All God’s Creatures: Ferguson

Swede & Owlet 3


I listened to President Obama’s remarks in the wake of the Ferguson Grand Jury decision as I drove home from Richland, Washington last night. I prefer the radio as my news source because it takes the hype out of the kind of reporting TV shows cater to. Too many media outlets today mix opinion with facts and that is not reporting. A listener or reader has to be discerning to delineate fact from opinion in today’s media circus.

I’d watched the news earlier while sitting with a sweet friend on the 4th floor of the Medical Center. We’d tied the dog Lilly to a nearby table leg and held take-out salads on our laps as we ate and watched the reports about the forthcoming Grand Jury decision. Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani was on the air, talking about how the biggest threat to black men were black men, not white cops.

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Mama June: What were you thinking?



Mama June. Mama June. Mama June.

How could you?

Welcome back Mark McDaniel, the convicted sex abuser who abused your own daughter?

No man is worth the value of a daughter well-loved.

Has all this fame and fleeting fortune (Just ask Kate) muddled your brain?

Your daughter says you didn’t believe her when she told you.

Like so many women, you chose to believe a lie and the liar who told it.

Are you really so desperate for love that you are willing to put all your children in harm’s way?

So willing for the pretend of romance that you have sacrificed your primary source of income, a reality TV show that depicts the worse kind of reality – a mother who cares less for her children then the men who abuse them.

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Dead Boy’s Devoted Daddy

Editor’s Note:  I will no longer be blogging at Patheos. This is my permanent site. Please make note. And, thank you for sticking with me all these years. has been my home for many years now. I’m glad to be back with a sleek new do!  I hope you like it. Most of all, I hope that this new version will encourage you to dialogue without the bothersome ads and pop-ups of previous blogs.

Jusitn Harris

Peter was a friend of my husband.  They were both educators. They coached soccer together for several years. So imagine my shock when checking the cop logs at the Oregon State Police office one morning I came across Peter’s name.

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