Don Williams
Photo by Justin Williams

Don Williams is a prize-winning columnist, blogger, fiction writer, sometime TV commentator, and is the founder and editor emeritus of New Millennium Writings, an annual anthology of stories, essays and poems. His awards include a National Endowment for the Humanities Journalism Fellowship at the University of Michigan, a Golden Presscard Award from Sigma Delta Chi Society of Professional Journalists, a best Commentary Award from SDC, Best Feature Writing from the Associated Press Tennessee Managing Editors, the Malcolm Law Journalism Prize from the Associated Press, Best Non-Deadline Reporting from the United Press International, Best Novel Excerpt from the Knoxville Writers Guild, a Peacemaker Award from the Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance, five Writer of the Month Awards from the Scripps Howard Newspaper chain, and many others. In 2011 he was inducted into the East Tennessee Writers Hall of Fame. His 2005 book of journalism, Heroes, Sheroes and Zeroes is under revision for a second printing, and he is at work on a novel and a book of journalism. His columns appear at Opednews.com and have been featured at many other well-known websites. To run his column, gratis, at your website, post this link to a dedicated spot: http://www.mach2.com/williams/. Need a speaker, panelist, tv commentator or teacher for your group or to lead a writing workshop, in your town? Email DonWilliams7@charter.net.


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Two crucifixions to ponder
(Copyright by Don Williams, All rights reserved   04/14/2006)

If you believe Jesus was crucified, then surely you know he would recognize from first-hand experience what we're doing to our world.

He would recognize the wounds, the bruises, the sorrows and stripes on the land.

He would recognize false witness uttered by those who invoke His name, yet seldom mention the Sermon on the Mount.

Ignoring the Beatitudes, just as they ignore the science behind global warming and the peculiar logic of nuclear proliferation, false prophets promote every conceivable atrocity.

Torture and kidnapping, blasting the tops off mountains to get at coal, fattening beef in exchange for whole rain forests, making deals with India and other nations to provide a steady source of nuclear fuel, nuclear profits, nuclear weapons, asserting the right to drop such bombs on others, destroying treaties that took scores of well-meaning world leaders--including half a dozen previous American presidents--decades to devise.

Oh, yes, and they lie, lie, lie, lie, lie. Newspapers and televisions cite such lies every other day now—lies about wiretapping, Downing Street memos, global warming, intelligence leaks, mobile laboratories and other WMDs and much more. Evidence is ample.

Surely the crucified Christ would recognize it when those who most often utter the word “evildoers” refuse to face the darkness inside their own hearts. If you're honest about who the evildoers are, you must know they include not only terrorists in Iraq, but also you and me. I say this in a spirit of Christian love and concern. It's time to repent and change our ways, brothers and sisters. We so-called Christians, by and large, are destroying this Earth. If you believe true Christianity requires telling the truth, then you must grant the truth of this:

In certain Southern Hemisphere countries, children are denied the freedom to play in the afternoon sunshine--this unfettered gift from God--unless wearing large hats to shield their skin from ultraviolet rays.

Pictures from space reveal that the North Polar ice cap has shrunk by about 20 percent in the past quarter-century alone, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council. As Earth becomes less reflective due to the melting ice, she attracts more sunshine, which melts still more ice, attracting even more heat, and so we build a spiral of ever increasing destruction.

Meanwhile, ocean levels rise, the Gulf Stream moves south, perhaps it shuts off altogether one sad day. Hurricanes and tornadoes become more powerful. Heat waves, droughts and floods proliferate. It's happening all around us.

Moreover, in oceans around the world, UV rays are bleaching coral reefs devoid of life. Newsweek and CBS News recently reported that such phenomena are happening even faster than old computer models predicted. These reefs are sources of diversity. Without such species birthing centers the food chain unlinks. Likewise plankton and other anchors of the chain have come under assault.

Some believe we've reached a point of no return. Others say it's not too late, if we act now. Those dwindling few who claim it isn't happening are out of touch with reality, or worse. Some are paid to lie about the science, according to credible reports I can cite. It's all happening because we drive gas-guzzling cars, heat our personal palaces with fossil fuels, pump more oil, burn more coal, and pressure every society on Earth to mimic our ways. Our present leaders do less than nothing—on balance--to break these spirals of destruction. While making token attempts to control them, they give huge tax breaks to fossil fuel companies that already make obscene profits. Nearly 30 years after Jimmie Carter installed solar panels on the White House, real progress has become nearly invisible.

Meanwhile, our leaders propose new generations of nuclear weapons and create pressures for nations everywhere to rapidly join the nuclear club. While starting wars to control proliferation, we fund new waves of weapons and power generators—making this radioactive technology ubiquitous across the Earth. It's a policy that's worse than incoherent. It's surely evil if evil exists. Unless we so-called Christians learn to look at the darkness inside our own hearts—and at the dirt and blood on our own hands--there will be no resurrection for this world we're so rapidly executing, and all future generations will be cast into an outer darkness of our own devising--a world no longer suitable for human life.

As Jesus died at the hands of his crucifiers, he uttered, “Forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

We don't have that excuse.