Dad Did a Bad, Bad Thing

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  3. Dad Did a Bad, Bad Thing : Damien Dsoul :
  4. Father-son duos in college basketball on the good and the bad of playing for dad

As with so many fathers and sons who quarrel, the real problem was that the men were alike in too many ways. Every U. Specifically, legislative bodies have been empowered to fix or amend laws passed by initiative. But not in California. Once the voters have done something, undoing it is extraordinarily difficult. This was intentional. Hiram did not trust politicians backed by powerful interest groups—people like his father—to have any role in the initiative process. Indeed, they were to be cut out of the process altogether, just as Hiram had cut his father out of his life.

One result: We are governed by ghosts.

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The errors and decisions of voters long dead linger in statute unamended for decades, creating all sorts of unintended consequences. As he left the governorship for the U. Senate in , Hiram Johnson made wary peace with his father.

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But their rift remains embodied in the state constitution and in our initiative process. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our privacy and cookie policy. No paywall.

No ads. No partisan hacks. Ideas journalism with a head and a heart. They Need Communities. Connecting California. And we never address those problems, because our media keep repeating a bogus story: A century ago, the noble and sainted Hiram Johnson created the initiative process to give the people of California the power to fight the railroad and other powerful interests.

It was actually inspired after recently counseling someone whose father had sexually abused her as a child. So, if your dad is Ward Cleaver, count your lucky stars. You don't need to read on. Go enjoy him. Love him and celebrate him. Just don't judge those of us who struggle with Father's Day because we had something far less than "Father Knows Best," for a dad.

To begin with, it's important to remember that the Hebrew Bible says, " honor your father. Of course, it would be wonderful to feel love for one's father, however, love is a feeling and feelings can't be commanded. Some fathers are lovable. However, some fathers are not.


For a myriad of reasons, they are outside the realm of our love: abuse, neglect, absence, abandonment, betrayal -- many fathers have simply made it impossible for their children to feel the emotion of love or demonstrate it back. Look, we are not judged by our feelings, rather, we are judged by our actions.

We’re Still Paying the Price For Hiram Johnson’s Toxic Relationship With His Father

It would be nice to love dad, however, for many of us, at least at this moment, it may not be there and maybe it never will. What is a choice, what is always a choice, however, are our actions. How do we choose to treat our dads? That is always our choice to make. To "honor" our father, at the very least, is to treat him with common decency and dignity. In the rabbinic tradition this is the bare minimum of making sure that he is clothed, fed, and sleeps with a roof over his head.

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  6. It is a minimum, it certainly isn't a maximum, but it is a start. Beyond that there are degrees of honor -- if at all possible, picking up the phone and calling dad, speaking to dad in a dignified way and taking the kids to visit their grandfather are all rungs as we climb up the ladder of honor. Yes, that is harsh. Of course it isn't ideal.


    Dad Did a Bad, Bad Thing : Damien Dsoul :

    It's horrible. It's hell. However, so is physical abuse, sexual abuse or emotional abuse. Hell is having a father who is a drug addict, a compulsive liar, thief, bully or all-around bad guy. Indeed, there is a commandment to honor one's father, however, there is no commandment to subject oneself, or own's children, to abuse, forsaking their honor, or our own, to honor an abusive dad.

    As much as it is a commandment to honor one's father, equally it is a commandment for a father to make it possible for his children to honor him and some dad's seem to do all they can to make this commandment nearly impossible to fulfill. Respect must be earned. Love must be inspired.

    Father-son duos in college basketball on the good and the bad of playing for dad

    Honor, however, is a set of actions that we have some control over. As sons and daughters we must do everything we can to bestow honor, at least the lowest rung on the ladder of honor, upon our dad. Maybe this Father's Day you'll forgive your dad alive or dead.