The Hearth has always been the center of activity. Where the family gathered to end the day, and the place of honor for a travelling Bard or wiseman. Our hearth is a place to tell your stories. Each week, we hope to bring you a new tale, as well as a place to express your opinions on the issues that interest you. To accomplish this, we need your help, your tales and questions. We will do our best to get every tale told, but it may take time.
So, pull up a chair, have another tankard, and listen as worlds unfold in the words of the storyteller...
Once upon a time, there was a place where people could say and do anything they wanted to without having to worry about getting into trouble. No matter what people said, they felt sure that the rules about Freedom of Expression would protect them. Then, one day, a small group of people got upset about a few words that were being used. The group called these words "obscene" and asked that a rule be made so that people couldn't say these words. They said that it was to protect the children, who were too young and innocent to know what those words meant. The rest of the people, caring very much for thier children, thought that the group might be right, so every said it was okay to make the rule about obscene words.
One day, the small group got upset about how some people didn't like to cover up thier bodies as much as the group thought was proper. So, the group asked that a rule be made so that anyone who didn't cover up thier bodies would get into trouble. The group called it "obscene" to be without clothes, and said that if the children saw someone like that, it would hurt them. The rest of the people, caring very much for thier children, thought that the group might be right, so everyone said it was okay to make a rule saying that being naked was obscene.
One day, the leader of the people decided that the people of another place were doing bad things, and that the people who followed him should go beat up on the bad people. Not everyone in the good place thought that it was a good idea to beat up on the bad people. The people, because of the rule that protected thier Freedom of Expression, got together to tell everyone what they thought. The small group of people who said that they were trying to protect the children got very upset at this, and tried to make a rule saying it was bad to say bad things about the leader. The group said that if everyone talked bad about the leader, then it would mean that it was okay to talk bad about anyone, which was a bad thing to teach the children. This time, the people did not thing the group had a good idea, so to them to go away.
One day, a little girl wrote a poem. The poem said bad things about the leader and his wanting to beat up on the bad people. Her teacher thought it was very good, and since there were no obscene words or actions, he said it was okay to read to the school. When the little girl read her poem to the school, there was a man who worked for the leader of the place. The man didn't like the poem because of the bad things it said about the leader, and he talked to the principle. The principle agreed with the man and told the teacher to go home and not work anymore. Then the principle told the little girl that she was bad and should be punished. The little girl's mother, who was also a teacher at the school, did not think the little girl was bad and did not punish her. This made the principle very angry, and he told the mother to go home and not work anymore.
The principle then said that no one in the school was allowed to write poems or make pictures. The principle took down all the pictures and poems that were in the school, saying that they were "obscene".
Ladies and Gentlemen, this cute little tale is happening for real. This time in New Mexico, but it could be anywhere.
The full story
Bush said no child would be left behind
And yet kids from inner-city schools
Work on Central Avenue
Jingling cans that read
Please sir, may I have some more?
They hand out diplomas like toilet paper
And lower school standards
Underpaid, unrespected teachers
Are afraid of losing their jobs
Funded by the standardized tests
That shows our competency
When I'm in detox.
This is the Land of the Free ...
Where the statute of limitations for rape is only five damn years!
And immigrants can't run for President.
Where Muslims are hunted because
Some suicidal men decided they didn't like
Our arrogant bid for modern imperialism.
This is the Land of the Free ...
You drive by a car whose
God bless America!
Well, you can scratch out the B
And make it Godless
Because God left this country a long time ago.
The founding fathers made this nation
On a dream and now
Freedom of Speech
Lets Nazis burn crosses, but
Calls police to
Gay pride parades.
Can afford war with Iraq
But we can't afford to pay the teachers
Who educate the young who hold the guns
Against the "Axis of Evil"
Land of the Free ...
This is the land
If you're politically assertive
They call you a traitor and
Damn you to ostracism.
Say good-bye to Johnny Walker Lindh
And his family.
My ideas about this nation
Don't resolve around perfection
But at least I know
Education is more important
Land of the Free . . .
If this was utopia
We'd have to see each other naked
Before we got married
But instead, we see each other naked all the time
Because the government has my social security number
And the name of my dog!
And then we make babies,
But don't worry, they won't be left behind
And they grow up saying
God bless America!
But they don't know who Bush is
Because they never learned the Presidents.
And they will ride the ship Amistad
To our dreamland shores
Bearing the same shackles as us.
I'm here to say that
Is pissed and we are taking over,
Ripping down the American illusion of perfection
We are the future generation
I have my qualifications
I know it looks like Angel Soft paper,
But don't worry
It's a diploma
Do I look qualified?
You can take our toilet paper,
But you can't take our Revolution.