Author Archives: Ryan C. Jenkins

Pen Name Politics

Ours is a day of retribution and disparagement. It is a day of overly sensitive, easily offended, and threatening individuals. Perhaps people would acknowledge what really ails America and what is truly noble about her if they could do so without employment or religious title, party loyalty and platform, or economic and educational labels; let alone age and gender.

So, what about resurrecting pen names in political dialogue?

What if good logical writers and thinkers successful in another genre wanted to offer some words in the political realm? Perhaps people want to contribute to civic dialogue but worry positions and words will be taken out of context or misconstrued some future day. Speaking of the day, perhaps their day job doesn’t permit them to offer a voice. Perhaps they would more readily contribute to the voice of reason and virtue if they didn’t have to combat an assault on their character (those Latin inclined it would be called, Ad hominem). We’ve strayed from respectful consideration of the argument and position, and how to compromise, to attacking the individual.

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Governor Greitens I Have One Question: Did you take a picture?

Once again, the immoral guillotine falls. Once again, we are left with an elected official scrambling to cover past sin.

Immorality is the rotten fruit of ego and ambition. Ego, ambition, and immorality foster a combative nature, which some are arguing is evident in Missouri’s political arena. Boasting in one’s strength and wisdom usually ends with public embarrassment.

What happens in basements eventually is declared from the housetops. The Savior warned of such hypocrisy when he stated, “whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops” (Luke 12:2).

A secular way to say it would be: what happens in Vegas, doesn’t stay in Vegas.

Continue reading

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How Jehovah Feels About Jerusalem

President Trump’s Administration, via Nikki Haley our Ambassador to the United Nations, has confirmed that Jerusalem will be recognized as Israel’s capital.

Why are so many world leaders against this? I think one word can identify why so many hate Israel—ENVY. But that is not what I want to address.

Jerusalem was first known as Salem, city of peace. Salem was the home of Melchizedek, a righteous high priest for Jehovah. Melchizedek was held in high regard as an exemplary king of Salem (about 2000 BC; see Genesis 14:18). The patriarch Abraham paid his tithes to this great man, at Salem. (Hebrews  7:1‒8). According to Joseph Smith the Prophet, Melchizedek and his people were translated as the city of Enoch had been hundreds of years before them (See Genesis 5). Continue reading

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The Immoral Guillotine Releasing Hourly

Politicians, movie stars, media executives are continually lining up behind the immoral guillotine. Most are being exposed and forced into the line, few sheepishly join the line by their own admission.

Aggressive immoral men are not localized. But neither are aggressive immoral women. Has our casual, and in some cases disturbing approach to sexual behavior and practices led us over a steep cliff of degeneration? What is making so many prominent men and millions of others act as they do? Why aren’t we asking who is producing pornography? Why do we not confront the effects of the material? Why don’t we start having discussions on ridding ourselves of the luring and sexually manipulating content that comes out of the entertainment industries and pushed by advertisers? Continue reading

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Indifference Befriends Ignorance

Indifference befriends ignorance. But it is a terrible friendship. It is time we help each other see meaning and relevancy in our position as Americans. Where we started, what we have achieved, and why it matters.

Historical figures and lessons are being challenged by contemporary ignorance. Our past of confrontations and triumphs are being undercut by ignorance. It is dangerous in our day when we have so much and did so little to get it. It is disappointing in our day when we have a rich legacy of historical lessons and we can’t appreciate them.

Some are destroying and vandalizing historical memorials out of a fabricated contempt for individuals and people who lived 150 to 200 years ago. In whom present-day antagonist have read very little or nothing about. Neither have they studied and pondered the context of the culture and times in which these Americans lived. Continue reading

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The Ease of Riches is the Fire of Hell

Image resultI just finished the book, The Vanishing American Adult; subtitled, Our Coming-of-Age Crisis and How to Rebuild a Culture of Self-Reliance. Senator Ben Sasse [Nebraska] is the author.

I have to give him credit he doesn’t come out swinging at millennials. He doesn’t demean them and compare them to the older generation. He approaches arguments and suggestions for “righting the ship” as a collective problem and a collective effort. We all need to help each other become better, more resilient, self-reliant adults. He makes a strong case on how to resurrect grit, virtue, and a strong work ethic. Which may be the antidote for our nature of over-consuming and growing dependency. It is a good read, especially for young couples who are at the front end of rearing children, or grandparents desiring to influence grandchildren.

At the time I was reading this book my wife discovered a story from the life of her 4th great-grandfather, James Holt. In short, there was lucrative mine. James Holt and one of his son’s discovered the underground vault of riches. The initial minerals taken from it were tested and sanctioned as very fine indeed. James saw a respite from his hard labors.

And then a dinner guest. Continue reading

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If not “under God,” under what?

A teacher at Battle High School recently led the pledge of allegiance. His version: “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands one nation . . . . indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

For unknown reasons the faculty member excluded “under God.” The students immediately caught it. Some students assumed he had mistakenly misquoted, while others discerned the intent. Their teacher assured them it was on purpose.

If not “under God,” under what? By what or whom? Through what or whom?

An elementary stroll through easy to find primary U.S. documents will reveal a constant recognition of God. Early writings and speeches of the men and women who laid the foundation we enjoy referred to Him as: Divine Being, Supreme Judge, Father of Lights, Omnipotence of God, the benign Parent, Providence, and the Almighty. Continue reading

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Political Arena Offers Same Fight For Over 200 Years

America’s second contested presidential election in 1801 ended up in the House of Representatives when the Electoral College ended in a tie (between Jefferson and Burr, with Adams right behind them).

John Adams—the sitting president, and Thomas Jefferson—the sitting candidate, waited for the political quagmire to be resolved. Jefferson gives us a glimpse of the plague one must endure in the civic arena. As he waited the decision of his most recent political fight he was able to discern the coarse nature of politics in a free republic.

Jefferson conveyed to his daughter: “Warn down here with pursuits in which I take no delight, surrounded by enemies and spies catching and perverting every word which falls from my lips or flow from my pen, and inventing where facts fail them” (Meacham, Art of Power, see xviii in Prologue).

Poignantly the political arena has been offering the same main event for over 200 years. Perhaps it’s time to identify the promoter. Satan desires to stir people up. He is a liar, false accuser, and flatterer. His subtle but persistent chant: “Deceive and lie in wait to catch, that ye may destroy; behold this is no harm” (D&C 10:25). Those who wish to occupy premium seating in the arena are more prone to accept the promoter’s motto: “Lie a little, take advantage of one because of his words, dig a pit for thy neighbor” (2 Nephi 28:8).

It is imperative that we get involved in civic activities to some degree. Our republic demands moral people be anxiously engaged. Maybe it’s time to expose the promoter, seek a change in venue, and alter the main event. Politicians and media-mongers must change their nature and soften the wild ambitions of personal gain, position, and power. So must the electorate.

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Zion Doesn’t Leave People Behind

Image result for job educationThe term Zion has multiple meanings in the scriptures. Perhaps the most general idea is “the pure in heart’ and/or being of “one heart and one mind” with emphasis of living in righteousness and eliminating poverty (See D&C 97:21 and Moses 7:18; online LDS Topics, “Zion”).

John Taylor (1808-1887) declared many years ago concerning a Zion people: “You will see the day that Zion will be as far ahead of the outside world in everything pertaining learning of every kind as we are today in the regard to religious matters” (Durham, The Gospel Kingdom, 275).

When I heard that a sixth spoke to the Church’s educational wheel was announced I was delighted. BYU-Pathway Worldwide (BYU-PW) now joins BYU, BYU-Idaho, BYU-Hawaii, LDS Business College, and Seminaries and Institutes of Religion. The wheel of educational opportunities continues to roll forward. The creation of BYU-PW is evidence of a greater effort to offer education to a broad range of individuals in a broad range of countries, economic situations, and social situations. Continue reading

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