Saturday, February 14, 2009

Doing Your Research

How do you research an article or a book? Do you research before or after you write the proposal? Do you know your 'stuff' inside and out?

With my second book, the one on Green Horsekeeping, I admit, I did not know the topic inside and out. I knew quite a bit, but during my research, I learned A LOT.

The first part of the book talks about the history of horses on the planet. This can be a tough subject to navigate when you're a creationist, believe you me. But being a "creationist" does not necessarily mean I don't believe in natural selection and some forms of evolution. I don't believe that there's one camp or the other and that you have to plant your flag in your chosen belief camp forever.

So I did some research. I'm curious, for those who believe in evolution, have you ever ACTUALLY READ Darwin's Origin of the Species? I mean cover to cover. You can download it here. It's a fascinating read and even starts off quite good. He references God in the early quotations and says, paraphrasing, that man should be as knowledgable about God's book as he is about God's works. I like that.

He also goes on to say in the very introduction that Origin of the Species is not a finished work. It's his abstract - his initial insights - and that the fullness of his work will take many years. In the introduction he states clearly that there are errors, that it's imperfect and that he has basicially no references to back up some of his statements. He doesn't go anywhere near human evolution except to say that we'll know more later as we learn... He was not an athiest, but more of an agnostic. He questioned God, as I believe we all do at many times in our lives. He saw God as a bit more of a programmer of laws than a creator.

Now Darwin's research has been discussed at great length for many years, it has evolved (har har) and people use the term Darwinism without really knowing who Darwin was and what his beliefs were. That's sad, because I think he was really on to something beautiful and complex and I think that if HE could have finished his work fully without the illnesses and hear problems, Darwinism would have meant something different from what it does today.

At the very least, it's helped me win a few arguments with my athiest friends and family members. :)

Now where was I... oh yes, doing your research. I think that now that we have Wikipedia and Google, we forget about the vastness of what came before. We forget to actually READ Origin of Species before we start referencing it. We think we know what it's about because we read the Coles Notes version in high school. Or skimmed it. We know that the people with the fish on the back of their cars are Christians and the people with the walking fish on the back of their cars, are not.

But I challenge you to go beyond. To not research by way of the wikis and the search engines. Actually read the books. Wade through their thick pages with their complex sentances and read what the writers before you actually said.

You can start with Origin of Species if you like. It really is fascinating!

(Crossposted at

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


My cats are kind of ... cat-like and weird. Their names are Ziggy and Zorro and they have pretty good lives when they aren't running from Army Toddler.

Except, the other night I was trying desperately to finish some edits and the kitten would NOT let me have any peace. He'd climb up and pat-pat-pat at the screen, following the typeing or the blinking cursor. I stopped him when claws were involved.

He has an amazing ability to get himself into situations above his pay grade. Witness photo on the right here where the kitten decides he wants to play inside my son's jacket. So much fun. Oh, look, there's a light at the end of this tunnel... oh, wait, now I'm stuck.

I could hear some swishing and movement behind me and when I looked back, he was just staring at the back of my head. "A little help here please?" Of course I offered help after I brought out the camera.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Your Uterus is Your Uterus... or is it?

We've all heard by now that a woman in California had 8 kids. She's apparently unemployed and she had 6 kids aready. Last week in my city a 60 year old woman gave birth to twins. Everyone is upset by both doctors because ethically they should not have a) implanted any thing in the 60 year old's uterus because she's "too old" and b) should have only implanted one (maaaybe two) into the other mother's uterus because she's unemployed.

But here's the thing. Many might know that I'm anti-abortion. As a Christian, I think life starts at conception. Or, to be more specific, I can't say it doesn't start at conception and I think that we're unable to tell when that's a small human life or not. I think we need to protect it.

Now let's have a little side bar here about terminology. The terms "pro life and pro choice" are often thrown around because the people who do not want abortions to occur want to insinuation that the pro-abortionists are "anti-life" and the people who are ok with abortions occuring want to insinuate that the anti-abortionist want to strip away all choices. I want to be really clear... I don't know what the answer is for the world. I do not like abortions, I think that we have no idea when life starts and to say that it's not life because it can't exist outside a uterus (a fetus' natural habitat) is like saying if you put a man on Mars and he dies then he's not human becuase he was supposed to stay in his natural habitat where he could live and breathe.

So anyway. My thesis statement today is that if you are pro-choice and you believe a woman has a right to an abortion, then I believe you cannot criticize either of these women for their choices.... because it was her uterus and she used it the way she wanted to.

But what about the babies? Yes, what about them? I think that it will probably be tough. Not nearly as tough as, say, being aborted.

What about the cost to society? Yes, the treatments for fertility probably cost society and so did taking care of the babies in a hospital after they were born. How much do you think abortions cost society each year? I can tell you. In Canada there are approximately 100,000 abortions each year. Each abortion costs about $1000. That's $100,000,000.

Now, I'm not saying I'm right... I'm open to being wrong, so please have a smidgen of compassion if I've offended you and offer a contradictory opinion, I do want to hear it.

But my question is this... why is it ok for a woman to have an abortion (in the quantity she chooses and whenver she wants) because it's her body (her uterus) and not ok for her to have kids in the quantity she chooses, whenever she wants? And question two... why are the doctor's in trouble? Why are they investigated for doing what both women wanted?