Danny Cardwell's picture

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Website
Https://thoughtwrestler.blogspot.com.
Biography
Danny Cardwell was born to love, read, think, write, and die. He's a Deacon at Piney Grove Baptist Church in Hot Springs, Virginia. He has tutored, lectured, and mentored at risk youth in churches, group homes, and inside the Virginia Department of Corrections. He's the station coordinator at WCHG Allegheny Mountain Radio and serves on the board of directors for Preservation Bath- a nonprofit dedicated to preserving the architectural and historical integrity of Bath County.

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2 years 3 months

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America's Longest Conversation

Anyone who has spent time on crutches knows how good it feels to walk unaided. If, however, you were bedridden or in a wheel chair those crutches would be a major achievement. That's how civil rights function in America. The life of racial and ethnic minorities is leaps and bounds better than their ancestor's, but that can't be the only metric we use to judge progress. It's easy for someone in 2015 to question the motives of those who highlight racial disparities in our economic, educational, and legal systems, but how many of those critical of the shared struggle for equality can honestly say race and ethnicity don't factor into the lives of minorities? 

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A Message To Black Lives Matter

Civil Rights Activism is tricky it takes courage to challenge the status quo and change social parameters. Far too many of your contemporaries see your efforts as crass, and your motivation as self serving. It will probably be 10 years before the critics understand your movement, and 20 years before the establishment tries to rebuild the images of you they're currently tearing down.  I support the measures you've used to keep your message from being ignored by the corporate media. #blackbrunch, die-ins, blocking traffic, and even hijacking political events have all been effective. My message to you is to continue practicing the kind of non threatening passive violence that has kept your movement relevant for over a year. Passive aggression takes longer, but what other options do you have? There are militant voices on the edges of your movement calling for an escalation that has the potential of starting an unwinnable war. Anyone who tries to convince you that armed insurrection should be part of any strategy to resolve the problems you're articulating is trying to co-opt your movement.

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Memes: The End of Original Thought

For me, the saddest thing about Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media is the constant use of memes. Too many people have given up on thinking. I understand sharing a meme that's funny, clever, or has a sentimental feel, but to completely outsource your thinking to someone with a meme generating app is troubling to me. The majority of the social, political, and economic based memes I see are blatantly false and designed to be click bait. Information is easier to get now than ever, yet too few are willing to invest the time it takes to read peer reviewed journals, attend talks and lectures, or -at the very least- think for themselves.

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Non Biblical Origins of a Christian Nation

Nation: A people who share the same lies about their past, hatred of their present neighbor, and illusions about the future. 

--Ernest Renaud

The myth that America was founded on Christian principles is so embedded in the psyche of our nation that questioning it's veracity is considered blasphemy. Many patriotic Christians point to biographies, autobiographies, and the Constitution instead of the Bible to validate this claim; what they disconnect is the fact that most Revolutionary history was written from the perspective of politicians and generals. It doesn't take a very smart person to understand that history told from the top down doesn't reflect the views of the average person. The native, the slave, the housewife, or the poor would have a different view of the same events based on their social positioning. This isn't a relativist argument. If we can't look at the past objectively, how can we look at our present condition with all of the emotions associated with our individual beliefs, critically?

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The Multiple Lenses of History

Tim Wise defined lynching as, "the extra judicial killing of any person". There was a period in this country where every 2 1/2 days a black man, woman, or child was hung from a tree. I write these words knowing that I'm the second of my parents children born without a legal challenge to my rights as a human being. My parents went to segregated schools. The history many of my patriotic friends want me to understand happened during the civil war; the history I can't get them to talk about is much closer. It took the south seventeen years to fully integrate schools after the Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas decision.

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What Do We Do After Baltimore?

We can also make reference to all of the illustrious Black kings, queens and warriors of the past, and cite everything that Black people have accomplished throughout history. But what's the purpose of having all that knowledge if we don't use it to move ourselves forward?

-- Eric L. Wattree

When I read this it reminded me of Frantz Fanon. Six weeks after the riots in Baltimore what's changed? Modern day attempts at social movements end up being the equivalent of someone yelling in a quiet theater, sure the yelling snaps us to attention and forces us to focus on the disruption, but as soon as calm is restored we find ourselves fully immersed in the distraction on the screen. Likewise, as soon as the camera crews leave the epicenter of the hostilities we, as a nation,  refocus on our individual distractions.

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Christian Rejection of Humanism: Josh Duggar and Bill O'Reilly

Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
 
Instead of pointing out the contradictions between Bill O'Reilly's and Josh Duggar's professed beliefs and their actions, I thought it would be more interesting to focus on the continued elevation, by many evangelicals, of media figures. Duggar and O'Reilly join a long list of fallen religious personalities who were (foolishly) placed above the flesh they reside in by Christians who should've known better. The need to maintain a pseudo-symbolic order is the modern day version of Aaron creating a golden calf. The idolatry lies in the false belief that political affiliation and social status can grant you direct access to the Most High.
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Gay Rights For Paleo-Christians

"In truth, laws are always useful to those with possessions and harmful to those who have nothing; from which it follows that the social state is advantageous to men only when all possess something."
 
Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are available to any American who doesn't suffer from that incurable disease called "otherness". There's a Dimension of personal belief that spills into the public sector; this belief has the ability to circumvent the rights of others. The lack of equality the homosexual community face is a direct reflection of the way our society has always handled radical alterity. The right to engage in commerce or have a marriage that's recognized by the sovereign is a right many (in this free country) have fought and some died for, yet the progress made in some states is being negated by the regressive policies of other states: Indiana and Arkansas.
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Middle East Fear: We All Should Be Afraid

I read something about fear a few years ago that resonated with me: neurologically, fear and anger have very similar effects on the human body. I read this in prison; it gave me pause: most of the people I knew who were in prison for murder weren't stereotypical gangsters or psychopaths. I thought long and hard about the stories I'd heard over the years and most of them were rooted in fear not anger. I decided that I would do everything in my power to avoid appearing intimidating or threatening.

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A Lesser Conversation About Suicide

I read a statistic that deeply affected me: There are almost 40,000 suicides every year in America. I find myself questioning what role, if any, our society plays in helping someone make the choice to end life? 

The suicide rate has tripled for the 15 to 24 age group. This gives me pause. These are the kids I mentor, tutor and lift weights with: I have friends who have children in this increasingly troubled demographic.

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