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The Wisdom Of Barnyard Bruke: "President Lincoln Prayed For A Wounded Dying Confederate soldier Lad."

Greetings to everyone in Western Illinois.

The rain this past week has certainly been sporadic. South of, near Edwardsville, on one occasion received a goose drowner while areas around here got anywhere from 1/2 to 2 inches depending on your location.

Some areas actually received only a sprinkle, hardly wetting the surface.

Pertaining to unusual rains, heavy rain on May 31, 1889, collapsed a dam in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. The resulting flood claimed the lives of more than 2,000 people.

Today, if that happened, our federal government would probably issue some type of executive order outlawing rain over a certain amount, within a given time period or better yet, we would issue a special tax on rubber boots, rain gear, and boats to help pay for the damages caused by the heavy rain.

We would then use the money, financed by the special tax, to throw a party in Washington D.C. in memory of the deceased and for those who helped pass the law to help the deceased, leaving little $ remaining to help the actual cause.

Fines would be levied against church folks who may have prayed for rain. Or possibly the thought would be entertained that religious people believe in God, and with God creating rain, we should take the drivers license away from religious people if'n it happens again. Probably we would have to become church goers with proper training in rain praying.

The month of June is named for the Roman goddess Juno, patron of marriage and women. Since ancient times, cultures have adapted June as the perfect time for revelry, weddings, and feasts, especially on the eve of Midsummer Day, June 24. People from Scandinavia to North Africa celebrated the summer solstice with wild parties and bonfires.

June offers the most hours of daylight of any month of the year. This is a great advantage for farmers and gardeners, allowing them extra time to concentrate on fields and flowers.

Folk wisdom tells us that all plants will catch up by the end of the month regardless of how early we got them in the ground, thanks to the long hours of sunshine and, with any luck, the gentle rains of June.

That information should be of some consolation this spring, for those who have later than normal plantings. While folklore allows for plants to "catch up" it makes no reference to expected yield differences between early and late planted crops. Sorry to build you up and then burst your bubble.

Last week, May 25, our country celebrated Memorial Day. The first official observance of Memorial Day was held May 30, 1868, at Arlington National Cemetery by decorating the graves of Civil War soldiers.

They obviously were not thinking of 3 day weekends at that time. Both confederate and union graves were decorated as a gesture of reconciliation.

Last week, 60 professors petitioned the White House to break tradition and not memorialize military members from the confederacy. I'm sure this deepens everyones respect for "professors" and their ability for reconciliation.

If 60 "over educated" professors can not forgive for something that occurred over 145 years ago betwixt our own people, how long will it take for Arab countries to forget and/or forgive perceived injustices committed by western countries during our times. Mix religion into the formula and the question becomes more complex.

Among those who signed the petition was 1960's radical William Ayers. The University of Chicago education professor helped found a radical group called the weather underground. This group carried out bombings at the Pentagon and the Capitol.

President Obama did, in response, take the unprecedented step of sending a wreath to African American Civil War Memorial in Washington's historically black U street neighborhood. While the United States was once considered a "melting pot" it seems now some are trying to divide based on color. Interesting changes in how our government operates in these modern times, many of which are unprecedented.

On the last Saturday of September, 1862, after the second battle of Bull Run, forty-odd hospitals in Washington were filled with the sick and wounded soldier boys of both contending armies, the wounded Union and Confederate soldiers lying side by side on adjoining cots.

President Lincoln began an all day tour to visit every hospital in the city before the day was done, in order that he might bring to the sick and wounded, and the dying the comfort and consolation of his own presence.

Late in the afternoon he knelt beside the cot of a confederate soldier boy. There he prayed for the badly wounded lad, little more than a child who lay dying.

As the weary, worn, tired President stepped into a waiting carriage, a nurse called to him to say that the dying confederate lad was pleading to see him again. He returned at once to the dying confederate lad's bedside, and asked, "What can I do for you?"

"I am so lonely and friendless, Mr. Lincoln", whispered the lad, "and I am hoping that you can tell me what my mother would want me to say and do now."

"Yes, my boy", said Lincoln, as he again knelt beside the dying lad, "I know exactly what your mother would want you to say and do. And I am glad that you sent for me to come back to you. Now, as I kneel here, please repeat after me."

Then, while the lad, facing eternity with recollections of a good mother, rested his head upon the arm of Abraham Lincoln, he repeated, after his only present friend, the words that his mother, then praying at home for her boy, had taught him to say at her knees before bedtime: Now I lay me down to sleep; I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take. And this I ask for Jesus sake.

Somehow I like President Lincoln's example of mercy, forgiveness, and reconcilation much better than the advice given by professor William Ayers, founding member of the radical the weather underground, and his fellow revisionist professors.

But on the other hand, as I reflect on it, I don't suppose Professor Ayers or any of those other 60 professors really believed Obama, as the nations first black president, would make such an abrupt and potentially political unwise and untrue statement his first year in office. Especially when he is advocating and seeking support for so many other drastic changes. They know he'll save those changes for later on.

In reality Ayers was using Obama as a radical "Bully Pulpit" to make a statement that "the world and the United States has changed and is changing dramatically." Much like Mr. Short Britches who sprays with his knickers while wearing the Mickey Mouse beanie on backwards, is making the same statement.

"We are giving up the old ways of doing things bringing in new ways and are ushering in a new order'. The "old" order either cannot or is unwilling to do anything about it, they are betting! After all, "the old ways lost the election and need to continually have that fact rubbed in their faces".

To each his own, I suppose, but for me and my lot I plan on leaving those radical changes alone. As for me and my household we're stick'n to the old ways. Many of the new ways have proven not to work, many times in other societies thru out history and besides the "Good Book" warns against many of them!

Catch ya later
Barnyard Bruke