Recent Heroes Commentaries

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Moral Duty v. Military Duty
Updates at the end of this commentary. Military heroes are known for their immediate courage on the battlefield, but for some, ethical courage can be just as urgent. Just ask Captain Brett Crozier. As the commander of the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt, with a crew of 4,000 sailors, Capt. Crozier faced a challenge he never expected when he reported to...
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April 6, 2020
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Hero Story
Heroes come in all forms: fire, police, paramedics, even everyday citizens. During this worldwide pandemic afflicting millions, we need heroes more than ever. As the top expert on infectious disease, Dr. Anthony Fauci has been praised as the most trusted man in the country due to his straight talk about the spread of the coronavirus which has now infected more...
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April 1, 2020
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“High and Tight, Mediocre Cheese” Redux
This story first ran on June 1, 2009, but I’m bringing it back because of a personal post script. At the time, steroid use in baseball was the hot topic, but my attention was drawn to another aspect of cheating. Although I believe steroid use is a whole different league of cheating, cheating is still cheating; which is why I...
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September 26, 2018
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Last Man Standing… Tall
Halfway through the comedy City Slickers, Curly – the irascible, tougher-than-leather cowboy played by tough guy Jack Palance – unexpectedly dies on the trail. At his burial, the cook offers this short admonition to the Almighty: “Lord, we give you Curly. Try not to piss him off.” Given Senator John McCain’s somewhat regular bouts of anger, the Almighty would be...
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September 4, 2018
Featured image for “The Ethical Take: Good News (for a change)”
The Ethical Take: Good News (for a change)
Even though the turmoil in Washington tends to suck all the oxygen out of the news cycle each week, there are positive stories that deserve our attention and appreciation. Here are three. Waffle House Hero – Last month, James Shaw, Jr., who, at the risk to his own life, prevented a gunman from taking more lives by wrestling the gun...
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May 14, 2018
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Yes, You Are!
Last Sunday, April 22, a 29-year old man entered a Waffle House restaurant near Antioch, Tennessee armed with an assault-style rifle prepared to kill many of the restaurants patrons. Taking cover behind a swinging door, James Shaw, Jr. and his best friend, Brennan McMurry, looked for a moment to take action against the shooter. As reported by The New York...
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April 26, 2018
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What Greater Cause?
In his latest book, The American Spirit, historian David McCullough had the rare privilege of addressing a joint session of Congress in 1989. McCullough has observed much in his 84 years, and written much more about the past in books, and the present in speeches, and what he observes, he relates in stories that make the past come alive. On...
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October 20, 2017
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Charlottesville/Hurricane Harvey
In one twenty-one day period, we witnessed the worst and the best this country can demonstrate. August 11, 2017 began as a quiet day in the suburban town of Charlottesville, Virginia, and ended as a violent clash between several hundred Neo-Nazis, White Nationalists, Ku Klux Klan and counter-protestors. During the violence, self-proclaimed white-nationalist James Alex Fields, Jr., drove his car...
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September 6, 2017
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John McCain
There have been many issues on which I have disagreed with Senator John McCain. However, I respect the Arizona Republican for one simple reason: I trust him; I trust that he acts in the best interests of the country, not his own. Last week, when it was announced that McCain had brain cancer, I was stunned not because such a...
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July 24, 2017
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In the early evening hours of October 25, 2007 in Afghanistan’s Korengal Valley, Army Staff Sargent Salvatore Giunta and seven troops were returning to camp when they were ambushed by Taliban fighters from all directions. “There were more bullets in the air than stars in the sky,” Giunta said. “A wall of bullets at every one at the same time...
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July 17, 2017