I’ve written before about how my wife and I raised seven children — one boy and six girls. An interesting thing happened with some of my children. When they turned 18, they got tired of me telling them what I thought they should be doing and declared that because they were 18, they were now adults who could make their own decisions. The first time I heard that proclamation, I laughed and asked what happened on their 18th birthday that transformed them into the type of person who no longer needed to listen to their parents. The response I got was, “I’m an adult now and I’m old enough to make my own decisions.”
If you pay any attention to the national news, you know about the mass murder of 59 people last month by a lone gunman in Las Vegas. You also know about the terrorist in New York who killed eight people by driving a rented truck into a crowded bike path. In addition to the killings, within the past month, there has been a wave of news stories about several well-known Hollywood male executives and celebrities who have been accused of routinely abusing women and getting away with it.
During the late 1970s, while I was in college, I met a young man — I’ll call him John — who was born in the Middle East. John immigrated to the United States when he was a teenager. He was a few years older than me and it seemed as though every time I saw him, we ended up talking about religion, politics, and the volatility in the Middle East.
Last week I received a letter from a man who felt compelled to put me in my place. One of his comments pertained to my recent article, A Gunfighter Rides Into Peoria. In that article, I described what happened during a recent trial that I was involved in. Here’s what the man said about my article:
Last month, Peoria Players Theater put on the musical production of Cinderella. While the music in the play was from the original musical version of Cinderella, the script was adapted from the 1997 teleplay that featured pop stars Brandy and Whitney Houston. My daughter Mary Rose played the part of Cinderella in the Peoria Players production. My initial plan was to attend two of the eight performances that were put on, but I couldn’t stay away. I ended up seeing four of the performances.
I recently filed a chapter 7 bankruptcy case for a client who owed a significant amount of money to some local loan shark companies. (I call payday and title loan companies “loan shark companies” because they routinely charge up to 300% interest per year on money that is loaned to customers.) My client also had several thousand dollars in accumulated debt that he owed to credit card companies and medical providers. For the purpose of this article, I’m going to call my client “Jim.”