thinking that perhaps he too was losing his focus. By the time daughter and son departed the Catholic school most students were no longer using knapsacks to carry books but wheeled their books in luggage. People in the area of our neighborhood advised me to enroll son in the gifted program at the middle school, as most children in the neighborhood apparently were enrolled in this program. I believed son to be a bright boy but not exceptionally “gifted” so he was enrolled in the school’s regular curriculum classes. I was disturbed to learn at this time that public middle and high schools nationwide hired security to patrol the schools. When I attended these schools in the 1970’s, no security was necessary as outlandish problems with students were few. I also noticed that not many parents were involved with their children’s school as the parental attendance at parent’s night yielded minimal participation for students enrolled in the regular school curriculum. Perhaps parental participation was greater for those students enrolled in the gifted program.

In the spring, daughter had completed the requirements to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. I was pleased that the students were provided with The New Testament of a student Bible for religious study. This was the first year a Bible was used for religious study. In prior years, religious workbooks were distributed to students to provide for curriculum and study. Daughter chose a Confirmation name of her choice as she could not be influenced to choose my name. She was confirmed on a day in May at the local parish church. It is probably appropriate to mention here a huge change in people’s behavior regarding Communion. At an Easter mass, I viewed most people chewing on the Communion Host after receiving this Host from the priest. When first seeing this at mass I was flabbergasted as I was strictly taught by the nuns of my religious education that one never chews on a Communion Host. It was stated at the time of my instruction that the Host dissolves in one’s mouth as one is engaged in prayer.

After a long day, usually I would watch television for about an hour or so prior to falling asleep. I did not for the most part watch regular television but instead viewed shows on the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) of this city because I believed these shows to be more educational and less “crazy and insane” than the shows presented through other networks. One day while viewing an initially pleasant PBS show on Chinese culture that depicted old traditional Chinese values and various customs, I was horrified, sickened, and shocked to view at the end of the show the murder of a beautiful baby girl. Apparently, the parents were in violation of China’s one child policy. The chubby infant was born lively and alert and then she was quickly stabbed in the back of the neck by the attending physician. Later in 2002, and with internet access I discovered that the same hideous and horrific situations of infant murder were occurring right here in the United States. At about this time, I also viewed on television the many repetitions of an advertisement that I thought to be insane, incredulous, and grossly immoral. A renowned statesman/politician was shown on television discussing his penis erectile dysfunction problem. I was hoping that daughter and son would not see this advertisement that promoted a dangerous drug to apparently solve this highly personal and embarrassing problem. At that point, I became furious with the government and wondered what kind of “One nation under God” government was leading this country.