Tag Archives: Dog

Sheep, wolves and sheepdogs

I updated this in light of the current gun debate and added some thoughts on the spiritual parallels.

A now-defunct blog made some important distinctions between three types of people:

  • Sheep, the “kind, decent people who are not capable of hurting each other, except by accident or under extreme provocation. They are sheep. I mean nothing negative by calling them sheep.”
  • Wolves, who “feed on the sheep without mercy.  Do you believe there are wolves out there who will feed on the flock without mercy? You better believe it. There are evil men in this world and they are capable of evil deeds. The moment you forget that or pretend it is not so, you become a sheep. There is no safety in denial.”
  • Sheepdogs, who “live to protect the flock and confront the wolf.”

“If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen, a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath, a wolf.

But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? What do you have then? A sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero’s path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed.”

I’m against war and violence in general, but there are times when it is required.  I find pure pacifism to be unrealistic and actually unloving in many cases.  Note that when I say pacifist I am using the Dictionary.com definition of “a person who is opposed to war or to violence of any kind” (emphasis added)

In this metaphor, there is nothing wrong with being sheep.  What is wrong is the naive assumption that we will ever be able to live without sheepdogs.  One thing that bothers me about some pacifists is not only their lack of gratitude but their contempt for those who protect them.

A thought from George Orwell:

We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence upon those who would do us harm.

There is a spiritual parallel as well.  Consider all the wolves in sheep’s clothing who eternally danger people with their lies about God.  Not everyone is equipped to battle those wolves, but some of us have worked hard to know how to refute their lies.  We don’t expect everyone to do what we do, but we do appreciate it when people don’t blame us for being “divisive” or some such thing.  We tend to be intrinsically motivated, though I will say that I get the nicest notes from time to time from people who agree completely with the views here but are too afraid to say so publicly.  I’m fine with that.  It is nice to know that they pray and are supportive.

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World’s most famous Italian Greyhounds! Probably!

Admittedly it is a niche category, but I’ve got the evidence to back up my claim.  My all-time favorite picture of my dogs was used on a t-shirt sold by Aerie (a girls’ clothing chain owned by American Eagle).  Now they are all over North America!  My daughters were excited when the salespeople said it was their favorite shirt (without knowing it was our dogs).

Click the picture for a larger view.  A shot of the t-shirt is in the upper-right.  Wishbone and Xannie are in the back.

It was one of those rare shots where they actually look posed (seeing the other shots from that day will tell you that it was a random event to have them looking the same direction and to be positioned like that).  We just had the patio put in so it is perfectly white, and the lighting was just right.

They did turn Wishbone into a girl on the t-shirt, but he hasn’t noticed and I don’t plan on telling him.   Shhhhh . . .

P.S. Here’s another secret: We don’t think Xannie is all Italian Greyhound.  We think she is part stuffed animal or possibly part skunk.

Uh oh, a double dog dare!

I got this challenge on Facebook from a life-long friend.  He has a great sense of humor and thick skin, but sadly suffers from a debilitating case of Liberalism. Out of kindness, I gave him two chances to withdraw the dare, but he persisted (they are a stubborn lot!).

Neil, I dare you to post this on your blog. No, I double dog dare you. Zombies Walk The Halls Of Congress : NPR.

The article highlighted Democrats and Republicans who stayed in Congress after scandals.  I wonder why NPR didn’t go after examples like this more aggressively?  I mean, sweet Maxine is still there.  They could shine a bigger light on this one:

Other survivors? There’s Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA). During the fiscal meltdown, she arranged a meeting with the Treasury Department for a bank her husband owned stock in.

The article forgot to note that Republicans are more likely to resign and more likely to be pressured to resign from their party.  Then again, you can only be a hypocrite if you have standards to begin with.  Witness Chris Matthews’ claim that the real problem with Weiner is that “backwards” religious people disagree with his behavior — meaning that “progressive” people think there was nothing really wrong with a Congressman exposing himself to bribes and ridicule  in sending R- and X-rated pictures of himself to strangers and then lying to friends and enemies alike in a pathetic cover-up attempt.  His real crime was getting caught.  Hey, at least Matthews clearly reveals his “morality.”

Also note that the NPR article “forgot” to mention Bill Clinton staying in office after abusing his authority with an intern, exposing himself to the possibility of blackmail, trying to destroy her life (and he would have succeeded if not for the infamous dress) and lying under oath.  Yet while Nixon became synonymous with deception and scandal, Clinton’s punishment is making $100,000 per speech and having a wife who is Secretary of State.

Back to the dare: My friend’s premise was that I’d never post something from NPR that showed that they were balanced.  But the grand irony is if they were truly unbiased then he could send me their links all day, every day.  But as it is he found a token piece that was balanced and was so shocked and thrilled that he launched into his double dog dare without realizing that he was proving my point, not his.  

Whether NPR is biased or not (and of course they are wildly biased, or my extreme Liberal friend wouldn’t be such a loyal fan), they shouldn’t get government funding.

There you go, my friend.  Hope you’re happy!

Sheep, wolves and sheepdogs

I am updating this in light of the current gun debate and added some thoughts on the spiritual parallels.

A now-defunct blog made some important distinctions between three types of people:

  • Sheep, the “kind, decent people who are not capable of hurting each other, except by accident or under extreme provocation. They are sheep. I mean nothing negative by calling them sheep.”
  • Wolves, who “feed on the sheep without mercy.  Do you believe there are wolves out there who will feed on the flock without mercy? You better believe it. There are evil men in this world and they are capable of evil deeds. The moment you forget that or pretend it is not so, you become a sheep. There is no safety in denial.”
  • Sheepdogs, who “live to protect the flock and confront the wolf.”

“If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen, a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath, a wolf.

But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? What do you have then? A sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero’s path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed.”

I’m against war and violence in general, but there are times when it is required.  I find pure pacifism to be unrealistic and actually unloving in many cases.  Note that when I say pacifist I am using the Dictionary.com definition of “a person who is opposed to war or to violence of any kind” (emphasis added)

In this metaphor, there is nothing wrong with being sheep.  What is wrong is the naive assumption that we will ever be able to live without sheepdogs.  One thing that bothers me about some pacifists is not only their lack of gratitude but their contempt for those who protect them.

A closing thought from George Orwell:

We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence upon those who would do us harm.

There is a spiritual parallel as well.  Consider all the wolves in sheep’s clothing who eternally danger people with their lies about God.