Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Have a good weekend coming up. One that some would consider to be a dichotomy.

First, it's pretty much spring here and things are starting to bloom. I noticed that the wild dogwoods were in full bloom the other day and mused that my favorite, the eastern redbud, can't be far behind. Sure enough, next thing I saw was a redbud all but ready to burst into bloom.

Dogwoods and redbuds are among the few blessings of this region. Dogwoods burst into a frenzy of white and sometimes greenish-white blooms and very shortly after the redbuds burst into their glory. Redbuds resemble nothing so much as a tree festooned with reddish-pinkish lights. The two trees bloom at nearly the same time, leading to hillsides covered with the juxtaposition of red and white blossoms. It's a sight that I've come to love.

This weekend we head out with the Boy Scouts for a destination that lies west of here and into what passes for mountains. If we're lucky, the dogwood/redbud display will just be beginning there. Last year, in addition to the spring display, I watched a golden eagle hunt along a mountain ridge. I never got bored.

As far as the dichotomy, we're taking the scouts up there to teach rifle and shotgun shooting. Doesn't bother me a bit, but I'm sure someone would see it differently. It's pretty benign stuff--teach them the proper discipline to handle a potentially deadly weapon, teach them to hit where they aim...

Much as I have issues with some of the kids in the troop, I'd rather work with them and teach them the awesome power of a firearm and the awesome responsibility that one assumes when one takes charge of a firearm than face someone whose only training consists of "Carrying makes you one bad dude".

Mechanical weapons aren't the issue. Human weapons are.

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