Archive for October, 2006

North People

Wednesday, October 11th, 2006
Tyler Murphy

The name Norfolk means “north people” and the name Norwich means “north village.” The names, I am told, are Scandinavian in origin. So if you think about it North Norwich is actually, North North Village.
The group of foreign travelers coasted through our small city a few days ago. We were fortunately a welcomed and convenient stop between Canada and New York City. The community made preparations giving honors and hospitality to the English and the Australians. The delightful group of people carried with them a casual foreign charm and a delightfully quick wit. The congregation visited our local school and shared a part of their heritage with our local legacy. The children roared and laughed and seemed to enjoy themselves. I must admit if I were in their shoes I wouldn’t have liked to come in for my day off and a few of us adults passed guilty snickers at the notion. I was impressed with the “Madame principal” as Derek Bigford-Smith called her – Michelle Donlon was nearly as enthusiastic as the children. The vistors themselves seemed very relaxed. Something I believe is that, at least in the beginning, all children in all countries are the same; I find that to be an encouraging thought.
The banquet was equally an event of interest. Gifts were exchanged and humors shared. Laughter echoed in the background of the ballroom the entire evening. I personally found our visitors to be of great interest; I have always had a profound desire to experience the outside world. After a wonderful dinner, I retired briefly to the bar to get myself a drink and then head home. A few of the visitors came in a few moments later and I had my drink with them. It was a marvelous experience. We talked of few things seriously and I spent the hour tentatively listening and laughing.
Here is a joke that is in fair taste I wanted to share.
A man was walking along the river in Norwich. He was a good man and he had lived a good life. The man loved God and read his bible well. Suddenly the clouds above opened up and heaven appeared before him. The man gasped, and the lord spoke ,“You are a good man, a great man and thus I offer you one wish to have anything you like.” The man, stunned, began to think hard and after a moment of intense thought glanced up to the heaven and said, “ I am going to California in a week and I think it would be awfully swell if you could make me a bridge from California to Hawaii. Then I could get a chance to see some truly beautiful sights.” God seemed puzzled with the response and said, “Do you realize what you ask, the ocean is so vast and deep, the winds and current so powerful. It would take vast resources and a number of incredible engineering feats to achieve that. You ask too much, perhaps my friend you would reconsider.” The man nodded in humility and thought again. After a moment he raise his head and asked “OK God, can you tell me what women think, I mean I really can’t tell what they’re thinking when they’re look at me, or when they ask questions about their looks or whatever. I never know what to say and I would really just like to know what they really want.” There was a long silence in heaven and finally God asked, “Did you want that bridge to be one lane or two?”
-English Joke

Foley’s Follies

Wednesday, October 4th, 2006
Jessica Lewis

In yet another government scandal, Republican Congressman Mark Foley resigned his post last week. Foley is being investigated by the FBI after e-mails and instant messages that he exchanged with an underage page gained public attention.

ABC News released portions of an instant message conversation in which Foley was setting up meetings with the teen and pressuring him into situations that made him uncomfortable. It disgusts me that any individual would take advantage of an underage child, but the fact that Foley was in a position of power and leadership make it all the more despicable. Even worse is the fact that Foley was the co-chairmen of the missing and exploited children caucus. He used his position and his authority to get close to these children and manipulate them.

Information has been released that at least two to three individuals had knowledge of the inappropriate e-mail correspondence between the congressman and the page and did nothing. In my opinion the lack of action by these individuals makes them every bit as guilty as Foley. They had a responsibility to the page, to the law, and to their voters to insure that this type of event was avoided. By remaining silent, they put other young people at risk. These actions should not be tolerated by anyone.

Foley is now saying that he was molested as a teenager, and that paired with his alcoholism (a condition that many family members are saying they’ve never seen) drove him to do what he did. I don’t know about you, but I am sick of the excuses. I don’t care how bad his childhood was, or how much alcohol he has consumed. For once, I would just like to see someone take responsibility for their actions and stop making excuses.