Great American Conversations
                    With The Alumni of RHS
                 Issue 103 ~ November 3, 2000

  "Learning without thought is labor lost; thought
      without learning is perilous" --Confucius


       Speaking of Diatribes
       Andee (Creighton) Mansfield (67)

       Gore "misstatements"
       Tedd Cadd (66)

       Defending The Energy Issue
       Mary Ray Henslee (61)

       Homosexuality can be Corrected
       Vern Blanchette (64)


Subj:   Speaking of Diatribes
From:   Andee (Creighton) Mansfield (67)

RE: Mike Franco's Missive

Oh, brother! Speaking of diatribes! It seems that, once
again, liberals must use name-calling when faced with
an opposing view. Obviously we who are conservative are
naive, lacking in intelligence, misguided, and/or
hysterical. It makes me tired.

         Andee (Creighton) Mansfield (67)


Subj:   Gore "mis-statements"
From:   Tedd Cadd (66)

One very well documented source for various statements
Gore has termed "mis-statements" or "Got the details
wrong" is with the widely respected National Review page.

For example, the true quote behind the misquote that
Gore claimed to have discovered the Love Canal thing
was that he claimed to have held the first hearings on
it.  He did hold hearings on it, but only after the
president had declared it a disaster area.

                       - Tedd Cadd (66)

The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life.                          
  Proverbs 15:4


Subj:  Defending The Energy Issue
From:  Mary Ray Henslee (61)

To:  Marc Franco (66), Issue 102

I think that you read a lot into what I wrote that
wasn't really there.  Maybe I just didn't express
myself clearly.  Obviously party affiliation is
important to you.  I personally do not lean toward one
party or the other.  I vote for the person and current
issues.  I voted for Clinton in the last two elections.
Would I do it again knowing what I do today? Probably
not.  The covering up continues to this day.  If Gore
gets elected we will have to live through the
investigation of his secret pact with Russia allowing
them to sell arms to Iran because that will not be
completed until after the election due to cover-ups.
We will have to live through the investigation of his
campaign funding, which is going on right now.  We will
possibly have to live through the mole issue, which is
still under investigation.  It is time for a change in
my opinion.

I don't really know what Reagan or Bush Sr.'s policies
were and I don't feel like that is an issue since they
are in the distant past and not a part of this
election.  The difference between Gore and Bush is what
is at stake in this election.  Bush wants to develop an
energy plan of our own so that we are not dependent on
foreign sources.  If we had our own adequate supply of
oil and natural gas we would have control over supply
and demand.  We would also have control over the threat
to our environment, which we don't have when the
exploring and refining is done in foreign countries.
Like I pointed out in my last entry, the pollutants are
all going into the same atmosphere whether we are
operating in our own backyard or someone else's.  As
turbulent as things are in the Middle East it is not
far-fetched to think that we could be short-circuited
by adversaries, which would be detrimental to our
national security and economy.

The fact that Clinton just went into our strategic
reserve and then had to send the oil off to a foreign
country to be refined should be a wake up call.  Do you
wait until it rains to fix your roof?  Exploring for
oil and building refineries is not something that can
be done overnight.  If you will take note, Gore has not
stressed the environment in this campaign very much
except to criticize Texas cities.  I am sure that he
does not want to be questioned on his lack of an energy
policy.  It might be noted that the weather plays a big
role in determining the pollution level on any given
day in any given place. At times weather conditions
cause pollutants to build up over an area instead of
clearing it away. For this reason it is ludicrous for
Gore to compare cities pollution levels.  Take readings
on ozone days in any city and they can be deemed the
worst polluted city.  Houston has a climate that is
conducive to pollution.

Developing our own energy resources is an issue that
must be handled delicately by the candidates because of
environmentalist's outcries.  It is a damned if you do
and damned if you don't situation.  The scenarios that
I mentioned are not hysteria, but real possibilities if
we should be faced with a catastrophic shortage.  Bush
has not been afraid to take a stand and say that he
plans to begin exploration in Alaska.  I really don't
think that exploring for oil and gas in Alaska is going
to be a problem except to those who want to make it a
problem.  You can't please all of the people all of the
time.  Sometimes environmentalists with good intentions
have tunnel vision, which can be counter-productive.
There must be a line drawn in the sand somewhere if we
are to remain a strong country.

A very good example is the water shortage in San
Antonio that I mentioned in my last entry.  When the
water level in our aquifer got low enough to endanger
the salamanders, the city dictated that there would be
no more watering of lawns and warned that there would
be armed water patrols looking for water wasters.  The
people of San Antonio decided that maybe it was better
to sacrifice a few salamanders than their lawns and
their foundations.  Sometimes there is no equitable
compromise when it comes to our needs and the
environment.  Gore is not blasting Bush for wanting to
drill for oil in Alaska because of the pollution, but
rather because of upsetting nature.

You sound as hysterical about global warming, as you
are accusing me of being over the prospect of a major
oil shortage.  It is evident that both problems have
serious future consequences if not addressed
immediately.  Your concern about one and not the other
doesn't make sense to me.  The fact that Gore is
concerned about one and not the other doesn't make
sense to me either.  Bush will address both problems,
while we already know that Gore will only address one
problem even though we have energy resources that can
easily be tapped.  Exactly what do you think should be
done about global warming that Bush will not do?  Do
you want the government to mandate how many children we
should have, how many cars we are allowed per family, a
halt to new businesses that poise any threat to the
environment, no more gas lawn mowers, no more outside
barbecues, no more airlines in the sky, etc.  The EPA
is already implementing so many restrictions that it
won't be long before we cannot afford to buy anything
that requires the EPA's stamp of approval.  Just how
much more can be done?  Do scientists really know what
is causing global warming?  Why aren't they more vocal
on the issue?  How long has there been a hole in the
ozone layer?  What types of pollutants contribute to
global warming?  Weather patterns have been changing
all throughout history so this is nothing new.  Just
maybe we don't know all that there is to know.  If Gore
and Clinton have done such a good job of cleaning up
our environment then why is the problem with the ozone
layer and global warming getting worse instead of
better as you say?  Have Gore and Clinton limited human
economic activity for the sake of the environment as
you say Reagan and Bush Sr. refused to do and now
George W. Bush following in their footsteps will refuse
to do (I am really not sure exactly what you mean by
human economic activity, but maybe others do)?  Did
Clinton and Gore sign an environmental treaty to limit
some of the pollutants that you say Bush Sr. would not
sign and if so what countries are involved?  Just
asking because I really think that something this
critical should be bipartisan. 
My plea is just that we have our own energy sources.
Obviously our strategic reserve was put into place for
a reason, but it will only serve as a temporary fix if
needed and maybe not even that if it can't be refined.
Let's not become our own worst enemy by not having the
foresight to do what is necessary to maintain our
economy and national security.  We can make sacrifices
in other areas that are less crucial to our lives. 
We are all environmentalists in that we all want clean
air and we all want to preserve our countryside and the
animals that inhabit it for future generations.  The
problem comes when some people want to stand in the way
of our basic needs in the name of the environment.
Some are just blindsided by their own good intentions
and some are extremists who will always be looking for
a cause whether it is the environment or some other
popular cause.

I don't think Gore is responsible for our economy over
the last 8 years.  To the contrary he is threatening
our economy by refusing to address the energy issue and
by waging attacks on the fortune 500.  He is a leader
who wants to engulf the people, not stand with the

If you are opposed to drilling for oil in this country,
then Gore is your man because I don't think that he
will take the initiative to do so until forced to do so
when it may be too late.  

                  - Mary Ray Henslee (61)


Subj:  Homosexuality can be Corrected
From:  Vern Blanchette  (68)

I have followed the Sandbox exchanges about homosexuals
and would like to add what I know. Like Patricia Keeney
we have a son who has declared himself "gay."  Because
of our love for our son we have made a study of this
issue, doing much reading and attending both "Love Won
Out" conferences and PFLAG meetings.  So here are my
comments, especially for Patricia Keeney, and each of
you can decide if what I say sounds like truth.

One of the things that happens when a person undergoes
a tragedy in their life is a tendency to get locked
into one of the phases of recovery from the hurt and
pain.  For some it is anger, for some depression, for
some it is denial.  I have found that for many parents
of children who practice homosexual acts denial is
Novocain for the heart. It is used to numb one's mind
to the gut wrenching horror of the idea that our loved
one could deviate so far from normal, healthy behavior.
Key to this denial is the choice by the parent to
believe that the acts their kids are now doing are
"normal" and that they have "no control" over who they

I have seen this often in parents of kids gone astray.
They "find" reasons to explain away the behavior, to
justify it.  In the case of kids who practice
homosexuality, this has evolved into an entire
subculture of deception and politically correct myth.
After a myth is repeated often enough it is believed as
reality.  And after a myth is accepted as being "truth"
then other problems arise.  They always do arise when
one has not gotten to the root of the pain (in this
case the fact that our kid's behavior really is
horribly dysfunctional).  One of the most common of
these "other problems" is a tendency for the parent-in-
denial to rail against people with moral standards.
You see, if I can convince myself that my kid's mind
and behavior are okay, and that the real problem is
people who read and believe the Bible, not only does my
pain go away but now I feel righteous!  "I must fight
these evil bigots that say my child is screwed up!"
That is why we find parents of kids who do homosexual
acts living out a fierce anger against practicing
Christians.  That is why Patricia can write "My
firstborn son started suffering at the hands of the
moral little thugs from your moral, upright families
from the time he was in the first grade." That is hurt
and anger coming out, but it is misdirected.  Sure
those kids were wrong, but the energy of anger should
be directed at finding and correcting the dysfunction
in one's own offspring. Helping a child out of
homosexuality is real love, tough and difficult yes,
but real love.

Amazingly, there actually is a psychological
explanation of and a reparative therapy for the
dysfunction "homosexuality."  The cure is difficult and
few work at it precisely because it is a painful,
sometimes long process to go through (but then, so is
AIDS a long, painful process).  It is painful for the
homosexual because they must first admit that the acts
they are doing really are dysfunctional and do not lead
to the lasting, loving relationships they seek.  They
must see that the "gay" lifestyle really is unhealthy.
Like a recovering alcoholic, or a recovering substance
abuser, the homosexual desiring to exit this sexual
addiction lifestyle will have to be willing to battle
the dysfunctional urges every day.  My wife and I know
this to be true because we have talked to several
people who are working through exactly this process.
And they are succeeding!  In fact, the literature I
have read says that the percentage of homosexuals who
undergo reparative therapy and stay out of the "gay"
lifestyle is higher than that for recovering
alcoholics.  And please understand, a homosexual coming
out of that lifestyle does not just stop doing
homosexual acts.  The reparative therapy allows them to
develop fulfilling, heterosexual, long term
relationships, including building a family.  Those who
get there never want to go back.  In fact, it is those
individuals who can most clearly articulate the evils
of the lifestyle. They no longer have any reason to
hide the dark side and pretend that their acts are

Homosexuality is basically a sexual addiction born out
of what the psychologists call "Gender Identity
Crisis."  This "Gender Identity Crisis" usually results
from the child-parent relationship (or lack of it).
The environment the child is raised in also plays a
part.  Incipient homosexuality can be corrected easily
if caught at an early age.  There is not enough Sandbox
to explain the psychology and pathologies of it all.
However, if you are open to learning something new
which you can then decide is or is not truth, then I
recommend you expand your reading beyond the books you
will find at a PFLAG meeting (Parents and Friends of
Lesbians and Gays).  (My wife and I found those
meetings to be lead and run by gays who limit the
information flow to their own beliefs.)  Read books
written by ex-gays, such as "A Strong Delusion" by Joe
Dallas, or "Coming Out of Homosexuality" by Bob Davies
and Lori Rentzel. Read books about the dark side of the
lifestyle such as "The Unhappy Gays" by Tim LaHaye.  Or
more scientific works such as "My Genes Made Me Do it!"
by Neil and Briar Whitehead.  (All these available
through  Find and attend a "Love Won Out"
conference sponsored by "Focus on the Family."  Only
then will you be able to form an intelligent, educated
decision about this subject.

As for my wife and I and our family, we are Christians
who do our best to follow the teachings of Jesus.  We
have not, do not, will not mistreat, or allow our
children to mistreat, persons who choose to do
homosexual acts.  Our Lord would not allow that.
However, Jesus would speak the truth as He did to the
woman at the well. (Remember He said to her, "Go, and
sin no more.")  If we love our son can we do any less?
We would not be loving parents if we did not continue
to love him, welcome him in our home, and yet continue
to try to help him see what has really happened and
bring him out of his dysfunction.  This can be done in
a loving, gentle manner.  Our loving hope is, with
God's help, to someday bounce our son's kids, our
grandchildren, on our knees, and to see the love of his
children in our son's eyes!  The alternative, the
lifestyle he has so far chosen, will only lead to a
lonely, empty, unfulfilled man with a history of
hundreds of failed, lust driven relationships, rejected
by his peers because he is no longer desirable.  Why
would any loving parent abandon their child to that
living hell?
                  - Vern Blanchette  (68)

That concludes this issue of THE SANDBOX folks. Please
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Alumni of Richland High School, Richland Washington,
AKA Columbia High School, representing classes from 1942
through 2000. Visit the THE SANDBOX website.

Al Parker (53)
Shippenville, PA
                             - 103-