Jakubczyk on Common Sense

Applying faith and reason to ideas, issues and events in today's world

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Catching up with Life Itself and forever thankful for His Grace

When I last wrote on Jakubczyk on Life, I was thanking everyone for helping me to get through a benign brain tumor and the surgeries involved.

Then I went silent for the next year and a half.

While my friends and colleagues know what happened, many of you do not.

Simply stated - I had two more tumors and two more brain surgeries to remove them. The second surgery was on May 25, 3017. The third occurred on February 2, 2018. Following the third operation, I lined up to have six weeks of radiation. I am in week five and almost finished.

By God's grace, I have kept the office open and have been working half days.

I thank everyone for their prayers and support during this time of continued healing. While my vision remains seriously compromised, I am thankful for everything and especially my wife and my family.

Hopefully soon I will be back at writing down my thoughts and ideas.

Till then, God bless you all.


Thursday, April 30, 2015

Musing on Baltimore

Common sense is dying. I cannot say it is dead yet - there are a few of us still using it - but it is dying. Consider what is being said about the events in Baltimore. Consider what has been happening in Baltimore.  It is insanity.

Presume for a moment that what happened to Freddie Gray was caused by police actions. How does that justify in any way the violence and the destruction caused in the city of Baltimore?  Since when does destroying your neighbor's business help improve race relations or community relations between the police and the citizenry?

The failure of certain black leaders to condemn the events, the failure of the president to be clear that such actions have no justification, the pandering by the media, all show the moral bankruptcy of this administration and its lackeys in the press.

But here is a reality being ignored by most of the press.  Baltimore along with the state of Maryland has been under the domination and control of the Left for decades.  Further the federal and state governments have spent billions of dollars on the welfare system and the problems are worse now than ever.  The inner city schools are failing to teach. The black on black crime rate shows no sign of decreasing. The absence of fathers in the homes of lower income and poor minority families is at epidemic proportions.

And we wonder why there are problems.

As I have said on numerous occasions, if we as a society cannot, do not, and will not respect the right to life of every person, born and unborn, if we as a society will not respect the unique dignity of the woman and the mother who carries, delivers and nurtures her child, if we cannot demand that men be responsible for their actions and especially that action of bringing a new life into being, then chaos will ensue.

Combine this disregard for importance of the family with the wholesale disrespect for the right to own and maintain property, and one will see a continuing increase in such insanity as occurred in Baltimore.

As for the pundits on the cable news shows pontificating their drivel, while they wear their $2000 suits and take home their six figure salaries, perhaps they ought to hear from the working class people and small business owners who have been suffering fro years from their failed liberal experiments.  Perhaps they should take a lesson from the bombed out projects where the drug traffic and human trafficking continue to destroy so many lives. Perhaps they should ask the Clintons and other rich liberal "progressives" why the millions of dollars they have are not being used to create real jobs in the inner cities or to hire good teachers to help salvage the failing school system.

But don't hold your breath.

For the Left it is all about power and control.

They have no interest in actually fixing any problem. The more problems, the more people perceive a need for government. the more freedoms are lost in the name of security.

Meanwhile - everyone is excited about the the new Avengers movie that opens this week. Sigh..

Monday, December 22, 2014

Reflections on 61 years.

The last couple of months have been very busy for me.  Come to think of it, this whole year has been filled with a lot of activity, events, travels and benchmarks upon which we measure ourselves and our purpose for living.

I am thinking about this as today was my 61st birthday celebration.   And the woman responsible for that momentous event 61 years ago is no longer with us here on earth.

Not that I can really be sad that she is no longer here. I know she is with God. To paraphrase Thomas More, God would not refuse one so blithe to go to Him.  No, the only regrets are that she cannot tease me with one of her stories about how I took so long to be born, or pick on us for not taking group pictures.

That was Mom. She was during her life so involved, so invested, so much a part of her children's worlds that any of us could close our eyes and hear her telling us to do one thing or another. There was the proverbial - don't mention this to your father - it will only upset him - but ...... the politics would especially frustrate her. She would ask how Fr. Frank was doing. She would remind me that so and so needed prayer. So in this morning's prayers, after my "good morning, Mom," I gave her a list of people for whom she should pray and events that need the Lord's intervention.

My mom - the prayer warrior.

Well she must have asked the Good Lord for a good day for me because it was wonderful.  Mass is always special and the boys were very happy when I sprung for donuts afterward. I saw my brother who gave me the biggest hug and then returned to the house where my Dad was there to remind me to not yell at the boys.  Soon it was everyone coming over, the adult children, the grandchildren, and the decibel level reminded me of the old days when all eleven were still living at home.

There was little James sitting at the piano, hitting the random notes and singing Jingle Bells. When I joined him and played the song, he continued singing the not quite recognizable words with the biggest smile.  Meanwhile over in the corner Juliet was swaying to the music happy to be relieved of the burden of socks and shoes - again.

My wife, of course, was being a saint throughout all of this. My surgery had rendered me quite limited in my abilities to contribute to the cleaning and cooking and Christmas shopping. Instead I hobbled around trying to walk properly as directed by my physical therapist.  She called upon the boys to pick up the slack and so yesterdays's little tree (and we were lucky that there were any left) was trimmed and decorated. Soon the room was filled with the nostalgia of 21 past Christmases in this old house.   For my part I continued to remain amazed that 12 days post surgery, I was walking with a new left hip.

Talk about a Christmas present.

Then we "skyped" with my son in Europe.  Again another modern technological miracle - and so I thanked God.

The football games, more family coming by and of course the football debates all absorbed the balance of the day until dinnertime. Again the great meal Petra made was only outdone by her desserts - something else that did not make it off the dining room table.

I went onto Facebook and there were all the birthday greetings - so many with extra kindness that I felt a little like George Bailey.

so thank you.
Thank you.
Thank you.

First, thank you Lord for all the beauty,goodness and joy you have showered upon me in my parents, my wife, my children, my grandchildren and my friends.

Second, thank you Lord for healing my hip and for all those who were involved in the operation.

Third, thanks to everyone who has been so kind to me.

As Christmas approaches, we all have reason to be grateful for the gift God sent to the world - His Son Jesus Christ - who came to redeem us and restore us to the Father.

With the world as dangerous, violent, confused and distraught as it is, we need Him more than ever, I pray He is a part of your world as He has been so much a part of mine.

Such is the prayer of a grateful son of a most amazing mother who showed me the love of God during these last 61 years.

Monday, December 01, 2014

Preparing for Christmas - Advent

So now that Thanksgiving is over and the "Black Friday" deals are past, we get to watch everyone go crazy on "cyber-Monday" buying "stuff" that will make everyone "happy."

I am tried just thinking about it.

I was going to go to bed at a reasonable time tonight. I still might make it if this little post is short enough and i do not make too many typographical errors.

But as I juggle emails even as late as now and the latest in the news, I feel required to state that while the media and the stores want all of us in the Christmas mood, the actual season is ADVENT not Christmas.

Why be a spoil sport you ask?   It is about putting us in good spirits, you say. Don't be a Grinch or a Scrooge, you exclaim!

But that is just the point. I want us all to enjoy each in its own turn.

What is Advent?

Advent is the season of preparation for the coming of Christ, both in Christmas and in the end. It is a time to reflect on the last things - death, judgment, heaven, hell. Okay, I will admit that no one wants to think about those four last things, which is precisely why the Church asks us to do so.

Consider WHY did Jesus Christ become a little baby. It was not so Hallmark could sell sentimental cards or WalMart could have midnight madness sales. Why was Christ born - to redeem us from our sinful state; to restore man's relationship with God the Father, to show us what true love is.

Thus the Church calls on us to reflect on these higher thoughts, thee profound truths, the noble sentiments and to prepare our hearts to receive the infant Savior.

So while there is no getting around the shopping and the noise and the parties, take a moment each day and reflect on the real reason for the season. Whatever your faith, realize that we have been given a great gift that allows us the time and energy to consider the love God has for all of us - and that He sent His only begotten Son to save us from our sins.

Let us appreciate and be grateful for the mercy God has shown us. Let us be kind toward our neighbor and help those in need. Let us look inside and make a firm decision to amend our lives, so that anyone who sees us would say -  there goes an  instrument of God's love in the world.

For daily Scripture readings that you can access from your mobile phone, consider downloading the free App for Laudate.  Otherwise get your scripture daily readings here.

Enjoy the season of anticipation. Do not forget the expectation that comes with the wonder of it all.
And as my father is famous for saying - pay attention to your family, to your friends, the reason why we are all here.

A Blessed Advent to you all.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Federal District Court Judge rules in Defense of Marriage

I will applaud a judge when he gets it right. This judge got it right.  Read this cogent reasoned opinion by a federal district court judge declaring Puerto Rico's laws on marriage valid and dismissing the complaint by same sex marriage advocates.

Ryan Anderson does an excellent job of summarizing the matter. Read about it here.

For my part I read the Opinion by Judge Juan Pérez-Giménez . I encourage anyone who wants to examine a well articulated defense of law, precedent, stare decisis and logic to read the opinion. 

Finally he chides his fellow judges for failing to act as judges by asking some very interesting questions.  Again nothing  can substitute for reading the actual opinion.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Judicial Oligarchy

I have said this before and today's pronouncement from the U.S. Supreme Court only confirms it once again. We do not live in a democratic republic. We do not live in  a federal system of government where there are states that have rights, duties, responsibilities and limitations on what they can do and a federal government that is "limited" in its jurisdiction.

Today's decision by the Court to enjoin enforcement of some of Texas' new abortion regulations law is a perfect example of federal over-reaching.  The law passed addressed regulatory rules for free standing surgical centers (read abortion mills) that would protect patients from shoddy abortionists like Kermit Gosnell of Philadelphia or Stephen Bingham, lately of New Jersey.

How many women have to die before these justices recognize the error they have made?

Random thoughts for the week of October 12, 2014

Having observed the frantic pace in which the courts, politicians and the media, both news and entertainment (although these days it is difficult to distinguish them) have been focused on all things "gay" or homosexual, I offer the sobering thought that human beings ought not be defined by their appetites. Appetites change, proclivities change, the person remains a person. and if we be defined at all, let it be that we are defined as children of the one God who calls us all out of darkness into His own wonderful light.  Let us be defined as members of a human race in need of salvation.  Let us draw our identity not from the ooze of the earth but from the blood of the cross.  In this only can we find out our true meaning and purpose while here on this earth.

Sunday was the 522nd anniversary of the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus.  Now the fellow has been getting beaten up pretty regularly over the last 20 years ever since some folks decided that his "actions" when he arrived in "the New World" did not meet some modern historians' approval.  And truth be told, Columbus made some mistakes along the way.  But the venom that modern day apologists for the "indigenous peoples" have spewed is absurd and hateful ( to use one of their terms).  The courage and skill exhibited by Columbus merit respect in their own right.  The real reason that these people hate Columbus was his unvarnished Catholicism.  He believed that it was his destiny to bring Christianity to the Indies.  That he discovered a new land was a happy accident.  But the exploration of the new world and its colonization was one of the single most important events in the history of western civilization and the world.  So celebrate this week and thank God that Columbus had the guts to set sail west to discover that new route to the Indies.  And while one is thanking God, include a kind word for Isabella, Queen of Spain, who believed in his vision and financed the trip.

Considering that the elections are less than a month away and early balloting has commenced, I recommend people take some time to find out where they are registered and who is on the ballot. Prepare oneself by studying the candidates and the issues - especially any ballot propositions. Start by recalling that there are threshold issues which determine if the candidate even deserves consideration. For example, if a candidate believes that abortion - the killing of a baby in the mother's womb -  is a perfectly acceptable "choice" for a mother to make, then the candidate does not deserve consideration for the simple reason that if he (or she) will allow the law to permit legal killing, there is no telling what other awful ideas he may support. hose who support killing of the innocent do not deserve our vote. Period. End of story.

With all the discussion of ISIS and the Middle East, it is clear that most modern journalists along with most politicians, have absolutely no understanding of history.  For example, last week on October 7, the Catholic Church celebrated the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary.  Why?  Well, there was this little battle in 1571 called Lepanto.  The Ottoman Turks were about to invade Europe AGAIN and there was a defense by the Christian forces under the leadership of Prince John of Austria.  The Christian forces won and Islam was turned back yet again. The Turks would renew their efforts in 1683 at gates of Vienna.  The Battle of Vienna was just another defense of Europe by Christian forces this time led by Jan Sobieski, the king of Poland.  Most Americans do not recall their early American history when our merchant ships were being attacked by Barbary pirates off the coast of North Africa.  How many people know that the famous line in the Marine hymn references these battles?  So when people are clueless about the extremism that is endemic to Islam or its political/theocratic composition, please refer them to the history books.  The one thing lacking in the West today that is real cause for alarm is the failure to appreciate the need to seek God's providence. For without God, we can do nothing.

A personal note: on Monday October 13, 1979 I took an oath and became a licensed attorney in the state of Arizona.  35 years later, by the grace of God, I continue to use this gift to assist those who have need for my legal advice and counsel.  It was the following Monday on October 15, 1979 that I "hung out my shingle" as they say and opened for business in a small room on East Thomas Road in Phoenix.  I have always believed that God intended me to be a lawyer to help protect his little ones and their mothers, to defend those in the courts and to provide good legal advice consistent with the Gospel.   Sadly there have been many times when I was unable to prevent the tragic deaths of the babies.  The memories of those failures often haunt me. Yet by Christ's mercy, I continue to offer myself as a champion for the innocent and to encourage others to stand up for life. May God grant me the strength and the grace to do His will in my work.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Organizing ones time

Lately I have noticed that time seems to be slipping through my fingers faster than ever before. as a result of this I find myself unable to accomplish as much as i use to do. It can be frustrating.  Perhaps it is the reality of age setting in.  But I think not.  I think I have to be more conscious of what I do with my time. And more important, what is sucking up so much of it.

I could blame the computer and the internet. Facebook does draw me in and now acts as a news source in between all those sweet (argh) animal photos. Posting pro-life information was the main reason for getting on Facebook in the beginning. Now the use of social media is so integral to getting the story out that one cannot ignore it. Maintenance is such a headache.

Then there is the driving around town. But I really cannot blame that for eating up time. I have always been running around - whether to court, or to meetings,

So what to do?

Lists - the bane and boon on one's existence.

I need to make them and - more importantly use them.

That's it. Now accountability has set it. It is out in the open. No more excuses.

Good night.