John Adams and Cops Shows Cancelling The Future to be Woke Today

Public business my son, must always be done by somebody.— it will be done by somebody or other— If wise men decline it others will not: if honest men refuse it, others will not. A young man should well weigh his plans. Integrity should be preserved in all events, as essential to his happiness, thro every stage of his existence. His first maxim then, should be to place his honor out of the reach of all men

John Adams to his son Thomas Sept 2 1789

Because of it’s nature Television has an over-sized ability to influence culture to the good or to ill. It is no coincidence that many of the cultural changes that have had negative connotations for society have been pushed by the celebrity culture for the sake of their own justification over the years for example: Sex in the City

I do wonder what my life would have looked like if “Sex and the City” had never come across my consciousness. Perhaps I’d be married with children now? Who knows, but I can say for sure that, as clever and aesthetically pleasing as the show was — and, as much as I agree with its value of female friendships — it showed too much consumerism and fear of intimacy disguised as empowerment.

It’s like candy: In the moment it feels good to eat it, but afterward, you feel sick. Whom you’re dating, what you’re wearing, or how good you look at that premiere — none of that s–t matters unless you genuinely love yourself. Solid relationships are what really matter.

Truth be told, I wish I had never heard of “SATC.” I’m sure there are worse role models but, for me, it did permanent and measurable damage to my psyche that I’m still cleaning up.

Sure, I could have been a dating columnist for the rest of my life but, honestly, I gave really bad dating advice — and so did Carrie Bradshaw.

Many women fell for this fantasy and are regretting it now. It’s worth noting that Sarah Jessica Parker got married in 1997 at age 32 and has been married to Matthew Broadrick ever since. She knew it was just a show.

However there were and are plenty of shows that can influence for the good. How many people became engineers because they wanted to Scotty from Star Trek or got into science because they wanted to be the Professor from Gilligan’s Island?

Cop shows are like this. I suspect there are plenty of people who became cops because they wanted shows about police as a kid and decided they wanted to be the honest cop the person of integrity and honor , who serves and protects others from the dangers of the world. Even shows like Barney Miller, which highlighted the monotony of the job, featured good people doing good things.

Now I ask you. If you decide to teach that the police are evil and to be rejected and you remove that image of the honest cop from the culture what will replace it? And more importantly WHO will replace it when it comes time to seek people to actually do one of the most thankless jobs of society.

Let me remind you again of John Adams’ quote that started this piece

Public business my son, must always be done by somebody.— it will be done by somebody or other— If wise men decline it others will not: if honest men refuse it, others will not.

This is being demonstrated in Seattle today. If the Police don’t do the policing others will who just might not be wise or honest or worried about serving and protecting.

The Demonetization of Police by the media/left for their political purposes is going to have great damage to our society in the short term. But the removal of the image of the honest cop and policeman who protects and serves from our cultural stream will do even more damage, not now but 20 years from now, because when you don’t inspire people to be honest men and women with integrity, with no other agenda than to make their living serving the public to be cops, then those looking to exploit such a job for it’s perks while hanging back from it’s responsibilities will be the ones who fill those positions and you and your children and grandchildren who follow won’t like the result.

Sundays at Rest: The Movies I’ve Bought from Amazon: The Seven Samurai


I’m been meaning to get this Series of movie posts started for while but with Corona Virus/Wuhan Virus panic in place it seems the best time to start recommending movies to buy and watch at home that perhaps folks have not seen.


Common sense tells you that a movie that runs over three hours and twenty minutes would have a slow moment or two that you can or want to take your eyes off the screen.

However that is only common sense if you’ve never watched the Seven Samurai.

There is not a shot, not a performance and not a line not even a glance in the picture that is wasted. Everything plays to the story. It’s everything that a movie is supposed to me.

If you are firm in the quite rational belief that The Godfather or Casablanca or Gone With the Wind or Citizen Cane is the greatest movie ever made nothing will challenge it more than watching this movie.

In theory the movie is about Seven Samurai who are hired come to save a poor village from bandits.

The reality is it’s really about how the process of doing so saves them. I find it one of the most Catholic movies I’ve ever seen. It’s all about responsibility, sacrifice and being one brother’s keeper and the costs that come from it.

In the beginning we see the bandits arriving at the village and noting that the barley harvest has not yet taken place and deciding to come back later when it does. The villagers frustrated by the cycle that all of their labor going to feed others without recompense look for a solution. The old man of the villege suggesting hiring Samurai. When they insist they have nothing to offer expect for food he replies “Find Hungry Samurai”.

Thus begins the 1st of three distinct phases of the picture

  1. The quest to find Samurai
  2. The preparing of the village
  3. The Actual Battle

For the modern viewer ignorant of history the culture shock of the caste system whereby a Samurai has the authority to kill and the villager is nothing and where rice is a currency in itself is striking, but this group of poor farmers attempt to approach Samurai who consider themselves far above them is really something. Eventually they get lucky when they encounter Kambei Shimada (Takashi Shimura) a wandering rōnin, (masterless samauri) who saves a young boy taken hostage by a bandit who considers their problem and agrees to help, they also get in the bargain the young and inexperienced Katsushirō (Isao Kimura) who, impressed by Kambei’s rescue of the child begs to be his disciple. Meanwhile Kikuchiyo also impressed by Kambei’s ( Toshirô Mifune ) actions starts shadowing them .

This entire sequence of Kambei attempting to find and recruit men to go on this quest that offers no glory or reward could easily stand alone as a movie in its own right. In fact if this picture was made in 2014 instead of 1954 it would likely have without a doubt been a trilogy and a whole franchise. Eventually Kambei recruits an old friend Shichirōji ( Daisuke Katô ), Gorobei ( Yoshio Inaba) who is fascinated by Kambei, Heihachi ( Minoru Chiaki) whose real skill is morale rather than the sword ; and Kyūzō ( Seiji Miyaguchi ) the master swordsman interested only his his craft.

These six (followed by Kikuchiyo ) head to the village where the 2nd part of the movie begins. The interaction between the villagers and the Samurai, the preparation for the attack and the bonding of them as a team and dramatic contrast as the villagers deal with both their fear of the Samurai and the sacrifices that they come to realize this entails. There is also the drama of Rikichi one of the farmers who went to recruit the Samurai who has a painful history unknown to them.  It is also a time of comic relief provided mainly by Kikuchiyo & Heihachi who never passes up a chance to needle him.

The climax of this idylic scene comes shortly after the encounter between Katsushirō and Shino ( Keiko Tsushima ) whose father Manzo ( Kamatari Fujiwara ) has disguised as a boy to hide her from the Samurai he fears. They spot three scouts for the bandits coming to spy on the village and the transition to the final phase of the movie, The Battle, begins.

The initial repulse of the 1st attack fills the villagers with confidence that they will be left alone for easier pickings but when they discover that the bandits are in worse shape than them and need to conquer or starve comes the realization that it is a battle to the end. Here we see the real costs of war as the villagers and the samurai both take losses up to the climax.

Ironically director Akira Kurosawa was constantly going over budget and Toho films tried to kill the project repeatedly. Kurosawa who wrote as well as Directed the picture however reasoned that the investment in the picture had been so great that they were unlikely to let it die and successfully argued fought for its completion.

While the movie was a success the critics in Japan were not as impressed but upon foreign release it reaped rewards and directors far and wide would be inspired by this storytelling. The film would be remade in the US as the Magnificent Seven replacing samurai with gunfighters with Mexico as a setting over Japan but the reach of this film, it’s cinematography is perfect, the performances (particularly Mifune & Shimura ) are outstanding and complement some of the best writing and storytelling you will see in a movie.

Social Isolation from the Corona / Wuhan Virus might not be pleasant, but if it means that you and millions others will discover this classic it will certainly not be wasted.

Why Corona Panic? Because we’re so Insulated from Danger

Right now the panic over the Corona Virus is doing a lot more damage than the virus itself. The media for both political and rating reasons are pushing this for all it’s worth and the public seems to be buying into this hook, line and sinker.

One might wonder why this is the case. After all this isn’t the first new virus out there and it won’t be the last, moreover the death rate is rather small and there is a specific population that is most at risk (elderly and infirm) who can be targeted for protective measures.

So why is everyone acting as if the world is going to end and that we are all in danger? I suspect because we so rarely are.

Unless you are living in a gang controlled area of a Democrat run city or have a job that involves risking your life regularly odds are you rarely if ever face an actual non-accidental danger to your life. Oh there is the odd hurricane or tornado and once is a very great while some lunitic goes off on a binge, but the reality is that basic threats to one’s life that were common 200 years ago, from nearby enemies, brigands and raiders or from diseases which were common 100 year ago have generally been eliminated from ordinary life in he US.

We life in a society that rarely faces death, and while that is good thing one of the side effects culturally is that we as a people don’t cope with the reality or the possibility of death very well. We deny it, we duck and dodge but death as a reality of life just isn’t there for most people on a daily basis.

So just like college students at $50K a year universities who cry oppression without irony when ginned up by activists with an ulterior motive the public living in one of the safest societies in the history of humanity is stampeded by a media who knows better into a panic for a disease which while dangerous is when it comes down to it a severe flu and can be arrested in its spread by basic hygiene that people should be doing anyways.

This is the price of the life we currently have and given the alternative of living in much more dangerous times it’s a small price to pay, but I sometimes wonder how such people are going to cope when an actual crisis comes up..

I suspect not well.

Interviews With Immigrants Lucy from Vietnam (and EWTN’s Daily Mass)

Lucy and me EWTN studios Irondale Alabama 9-6-18 (camera date was off)

The Latest in my series of Interviews with Immigrants is the incredible story of Lucy from Vietnam which I conducted during my trip to EWTN studios in Alabama at the beginning of the month.

If you are a person who regularly watches the Daily mass on EWTN you have seen Lucy in her white alb as she has not missed a mass in ten years.  If you’ve ever wondered who she is and wanted to know her story, here is your chance to hear it.

I had planned to get this interview up earlier but the Kavanaugh stuff ate up all the oxygen on the net

The full Interviews with Immigrants playlist:

Philippe: Haiti

Hanna:  Iraq

Alvin:  El Salvador

Maria:  the Dominican Republic (translated by Christian from Puerto Rico)

Lucine: Cape verde Islands

Donald:  Cameroon

Margaret Mary, England.

Lucy, Vietnam

And the updated map