Like well-balanced diets, moderated opinions contribute to a healthy society. The Happy Centrist emphasizes personal growth and a balanced view of cultural and political issues.
- On Holden, You Lack Empathy, Isleby J. JuroutYou say that you don’t hate Holden. Then, you call him a “troubled outsider who sucks”. That’s kind of hating Holden, Isle. You want people to stop talking about Holden as if he’s a real person. But the voice in the text is the expression of Salinger’s experiences. In that sense, Holden is the reflection of a real person. People that love Holden usually appreciate the humor and identify with the disconnect and loneliness that he expresses in the story. Readers who like Holden often yearn for authenticity. As an adult, I imagine the text as a testimony toContinue reading “On Holden, You Lack Empathy, Isle”
- You Can Stop the Gunmenby J. JuroutThe photos and headlines about a mass shooting attract attention. Some people feel drawn to the excitement. Others read and feel better knowing that law enforcement’s at the scene. Some are just curious; others read to gather information in an effort to protect themselves from a possible future attack. Consumers of this kind of news coverage are often unaware that their Internet activity has consequences. They’re opposed to the violence and want the shootings to stop. When they click on the names and pictures of the shooter, however, they are supporting the very event that’s offending them. Avoid theContinue reading “You Can Stop the Gunmen”
- Trump’s Capitol Riot Blasts Nationby J. JuroutThe colors in the American Flag represent American values: the red symbolizes bravery, the white, purity, and the blue, vigilance. The colonists during The Revolutionary War were brave (red) while fighting against the English. The founders were honest (white) when declaring America’s Independence. The country was vigilant (blue) when defending its citizens’ Freedoms and Rights. The flags that the rioters waved on January 6th blasted the nation when they conveyed opposite values. The red in their flags expressed not bravery, but bravado. The riot itself was pursuing something not honest but dishonest. In terms of protecting people’s rights andContinue reading “Trump’s Capitol Riot Blasts Nation”
- Support Gun Laws to Protect Rightsby J. JuroutAmericans have rights. No one has the right to take away another person’s rights. In some situations, a citizen’s rights may compete with another’s. Two people can fight over the Right of Free Speech for example. During this shouting match, the two citizens have competing rights. A functional government tries to resolve the problem by satisfying the rights of both parties. The official or lawmaker might require that each person remains in a separate location. With the solution, both parties retain the Right of Free Speech without interfering with the rights of the other. The gun debate is anContinue reading “Support Gun Laws to Protect Rights”
- Tucker Carlson Slipped Up on Hate Speechby J. JuroutAn action can be wrong and still not a crime. Cheating on a spouse is wrong, but it’s still legal. There are no laws against infidelity – here in New Jersey at least. With hate speech too. Even though it’s wrong, hate speech is legal and protected under the First Amendment Freedom of Speech and Press. Hate speech is wrong. Even though I think that hate speech is wrong, I still respect Nugent and Tucker’s right to express it. Tucker slipped up last week, accusing journalists of attacking free speech. People can call out hate speech without challenging freeContinue reading “Tucker Carlson Slipped Up on Hate Speech”
- DeSantis’ Stop Woke Won’t Stop Wokeby J. JuroutConversations between the Left and Right are a little strained. The Left is still seething at Trump’s ridicule. The Right continues to roll its eyes. The Right says the Left started it with CRT. The Left says the Right neglected to notice the police shooting of Michael Brown. Disney expressed support for the left when it released “Reimagine Tomorrow”, a beefed-up diversity program. In response, DeSantis revoked Disney’s special tax status. In a one-two punch from the Right, he issued the Stop Woke Act. Most people assumed that the measure was just adding to “the woke wars”. The measureContinue reading “DeSantis’ Stop Woke Won’t Stop Woke”
- On Holden, You Lack Empathy, Isleby J. JuroutYou say that you don’t hate Holden. Then, you call him a “troubled outsider who sucks”. That’s kind of hating Holden, Isle. You want people to stop talking about Holden as if he’s a real person. But the voice in the text is the expression of Salinger’s experiences. In that sense, Holden is the reflection of aContinue reading “On Holden, You Lack Empathy, Isle”
- Biden Shows Strength as World Leaderby J. JuroutI’m feeling the price of everything. The cost of my fast food yesterday was ridiculous. Who knows how much I’ll spend filling up my tank tomorrow. Thankfully, I still have the democratic right to complain about it, to make choices, and to vote. At least for now. The Russian invasion is challenging our liberties and Biden’s atContinue reading “Biden Shows Strength as World Leader”
- Tucker Carlson Condemns Selfby J. JuroutThere’s something missing. The guy ahead of me in traffic had a broken taillight and a tied-up bumper. Out his window, he was yelling at an old woman, crossing the road. By the look of the car, the guy didn’t “have it together”; yet, there he was, hollering: “C’mon, lady. Get it together! A friend of aContinue reading “Tucker Carlson Condemns Self”
- Fake News Claims Raise False Flagsby J. JuroutPeople say things People often post “fake news” under articles and blogs. Usually, it’s a false flag. For an article to be “fake news”, it has to have bad facts. “Fake news” is a false flag when it responds to articles that contain true facts. Rather than warning of fake facts, these online notifications of “fake news”Continue reading “Fake News Claims Raise False Flags”
- Biden Bounces Back as Ratings Riseby J. JuroutBiden fell down. Biden tripped midway while climbing the stairs to AirForce One last year. It’s not surprising. He’s our oldest President. When inaugurated, he was 78. Trump was 74 when taking office. Obama was 47. In the video, he reaches to pull himself up and falls again. As if that wasn’t enough, he goes on toContinue reading “Biden Bounces Back as Ratings Rise”
- Putin “Peacekeeping” Opposes Principlesby J. JuroutPutin called the Russian advance into Ukraine “peacekeeping” at the start of the war. The United Nations, however, lays claim to the term. UN Peacekeeping Operations date back to 1948. The UN has used the phrase for over seventy-four years. The term – Peacekeeping Operations – refers to a deployment of troops that seek “to control and resolveContinue reading “Putin “Peacekeeping” Opposes Principles”
- Cancel Culture Misses Moments but Maturesby J. JuroutIt could be the shoes left on the floor in the hallway again. Or the fighting. Or the yelling. As a parent of two young girls, I understand that it’s hard to live with uncivilized people. In this sense, I can identify with the callout movement. Like these defenders, I’ve tried to make my world a moreContinue reading “Cancel Culture Misses Moments but Matures”
- Fear, Faulty Facts, & Fake Frontsby J. JuroutSo many of us sit in front of screens – our eyes glued to the latest on the stock market. We gasp and shutter at each rise and fall. At the end of the day, we speculate on the causes. We try to imagine future positions. We brace for losses at each turn; at every leap, weContinue reading “Fear, Faulty Facts, & Fake Fronts”
- Mission: Live Well, Lose Covid Weightby J. JuroutThe batteries in my scale are not wearing down. A magnetic pole reversal isn’t causing the circuits to misfire. Water weight doesn’t explain the number of pounds that I’ve packed on over the past year. Learning that I’m one of the two in five Americans joining the “Quarantine 15” isn’t making me feel any better. With theContinue reading “Mission: Live Well, Lose Covid Weight”
- Feel Feelings, Slow Down, Taste Foodby J. JuroutThe latest news on Covid often drums up intense emotions like grief, fear, and anger. We might feel relief, running to the kitchen and delving into a jar of peanut butter. We might numb that grief, fear, and anger by chewing on crackers or eating lots of cookies. The relief that we get, though, lasts only minutes.Continue reading “Feel Feelings, Slow Down, Taste Food”
- Feast Freely but Follow Up to Live Wellby J. JuroutEating freely is not always bad for average people. Crunching on popcorn while watching an exciting movie feels good. A hot mug of Irish coffee in winter comforts the body and mind. Delving into chocolate cake can inspire us to do an extra-hard workout the next day. We might wake up more relaxed after that second MartiniContinue reading “Feast Freely but Follow Up to Live Well”
- Professional Boundariesby J. JuroutMajority Rule, Minority Rights I read the email from Principal Myers that asked me to stop by his office after school. I gulped, afraid that he wanted to talk about the complaints that Ms. Putram made against Ms. Rochier, a teacher I worked with. Ms. Rochier and I had become close. I was a long-term substitute atContinue reading “Professional Boundaries”
- Gift Exchange Ideas that Outshine Mineby J. JuroutI Give Good Enough Gifts My parents like the gifts that I give them. My father recently mentioned the stew that he made in the Instant Pot that I gifted him last year. My mother still wears the shawl that I got her once. The framed pictures of their grandkids that I had tucked into red andContinue reading “Gift Exchange Ideas that Outshine Mine”
- A Politics-Free Holiday Dinnerby J. JuroutLast Year, Christmas Began on a High Note A cinnamon candle in the foyer of my NJ home greeted family members as they arrived. In the living room by the fireplace, we drank wine, and while listening to holiday standards, nibbled on grapes and cheese. The kids played with their new toys; Uncle Thomas and Cousin RalphContinue reading “A Politics-Free Holiday Dinner”
A long-time English teacher, J.Jurout’s enjoys discussion. When he isn’t writing articles, he’s experimenting with recipes or watching the newest documentary on PBS.
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