Because we find ourselves in such a grim, alarming environment, something of a positive, galvanizing nature seemed in order for this week’s post. The following poignant plea was written by Dr. Randall O’Brien to address our current events. He posted it on his Facebook page, and has graciously allowed me to reprint it here.


3rd Civil War?

Dr. Randall O’Brien



1860s, 1960s, 2017?

I wasnt there in the 1860s. I was a teenager, however, present and unaccounted for in the 1960s.

2017? This one is on my watch.

Our country split over the slavery issue in the 1860s. Arguably, Civil War, Part II erupted in the 1960s, over civil rights for African-Americans. Are we now descending into Civil War, Part III?

On one hand comparisons are absurd. 620,000 Americans lost their lives during the Civil War, almost as many mortalities as all our other wars combined.  On the other hand, tragic deaths — race murders — stained our land during the 1960s.

In 2017? They still do. Right now.

Quoting Edward Young (during the Revolutionary crisis of 1776), Abigail Adams, proclaimed,

“Affliction is a good man’s shining time.

Yes! Now is the shining time for good men and good women to lead!

Leadership may be bi-partisan, non-partisan, or partisan, politically. But leadership must be dedicated to the cause of liberty and justice for all.  We are America.  Let us be as great as our ideals.


Elected or non, Republican, Democratic, or Independent, religious or secular, white or black or other, male or female, young, old, or any other demographic descriptor.

NOW is the time to stand up for right, to denounce hate, model civil discourse, follow The Golden Rule, love one another, and work together for the common good,  our American way of liberty and justice for all.

Im standing up.

Will you join me?





Dr. J. Randall O’Brien is president of Carson-Newman University in Jefferson City, Tennessee. Previously the executive vice president, provost, professor of religion and visiting law professor at Baylor University, the McComb, Mississippi native is a graduate of Yale Divinity School, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and Mississippi College. He has also held appointments as a Research Scholar at Yale, and Fellow at Oxford.


Image: California classroom from Google images