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  • Godwin Cotter

The Rise of Nothing has been plagued by disaster since the first page. The train wreck in slow motion began with the rise of blank space at the bottom edge of each comic book panel, crowding out the viewing window for avid comic book readers. While the ever-present threat of blank space rising never left, new calamities popped up per page almost: the fear of flying, the telepromptapocalypse, rising levels of microaggression, rapidly expanding response time-lag for virtue signaling among youth (remember children are our future), the challenge of logic girl, etc. This all culminated in the chilling prophecy by Jimmy McRich of Rent-the-Gospel ministries. The comic book creator had told Jimmy that the comic book would end in two pages! It was enough to blanch the faces of even the most stout-hearted comic book characters giving them a deer-in-the-headlights outlook. Above is the third page since the prophecy. While there is a relief that the comic book continues, the fear of what is coming next is sucking the joy out of the collective mood. Can joy return and replace the somber and negative outlook that had descended on the Rise of Nothing comic book universe? There is a symbiotic relationship between Slant-24-7 and the pervading sense of gloom and dread. Slant-24-7 provides reasons for fear and foreboding to their viewership. The sense of fear and foreboding gives viewership to Slant-24-7.

But let's start with some customary denials and prevarications. Some of our avid viewership may see a connection between Oral Roberts with his medical centre project and Jimmy McRich and Rent-the-Gospel Ministries. That these stories seem the same, only different is total coincidence. Sure, Oral Roberts did prophesy his imminent demise if a certain sum of money was not collected by a certain date. A late-breaking donation did save his life but the medical centre collapsed from a lack of funds two years later. In contrast, McRich was able to save the comic book with money donated to Rent-the-Gospel-Ministries through the generosity of desperate and fearful characters. But the similarity is just that--it's superficial and unintentional. As an informative aside, the McRich Catherdral will be outfitted with plush, cushioned seats. A soundproof room will be added with 30 high-tech sleep pods. McRichian attendees may purchase an hour or two of rest in the Lord should they desire.

The other incident that happens on the page above is the canceling of the word "mother" as a form of hate speech. Again I assure you that this has nothing to do with any current events happening in the world we are living in, the world outside the comic book universe. Depending on where you live, some people might see a faint similarity in the ditching of the yearly Mother's Day card tradition in most elementary and middle schools. For previous Mother's Days, countless numbers of students would work busily on a Mother's Day Card to take home and give to their moms. It's a win-win situation in that mothers don't seem to be the most critical judges of the quality of their child's artwork. (There is a proverb that there is only one perfect child in the world and every mother has him). The school gets to give children the experience of making artwork for an important purpose that easily transcends grades on a report card. Mom's are happy which often means kids are happy and vice versa: happy kids means happy moms.

But I must relate a recent conversation from a few months ago. A friend was relating how her child didn't bring home a Mother's Day card this year. The mom said, "Hey, you know me, I'm liberal, but this is gone too far. I worked for that when I brought my child into the world. Believe me, I deserve that Mother's Day card!" The mom went on to relate that a friend of hers is a single mom with three children and she pours herself out sacrificially for them. Anyways, the single mother, perhaps unconsciously, really looked forward to those three cards coming home each Mother's Day in her children's hands. It's really tough being a mom, being a single mom is even more difficult. It's a small but precious acknowledgment of the treasure of a mother's love. There is a Jewish proverb, "God couldn't be everywhere so He made mothers." Anyways, this Mother's Day, the kids came home empty-handed. Thank you selective tolerance police.

As an art teacher, I always get the kids to make Mother's Day cards. I preface the lesson by asking the kids what is the most important day after Christmas and Easter. I have to correct them on Halloween but eventually, they come up with the right answer of "Mother's Day". We make cards after that and I give bonus marks if the kids will make a one-minute speech about their mom. Speeches are timed and students have to start and end their speech by punching the air and shouting "I love my Mom." Later, if I chance to meet a kid's mom I'll tell her, "You know, your son (or daughter as the case may be) stood up in front of their entire class and made a speech about you. He began by punching the air and saying "I love my Mom" and ended it the same way too. I do leave out mention of the extra mark bonus, but you don't have to tell everything. Mothers are usually so time-strapped anyways.

I really don't understand the idea behind elementary and middle school classrooms no longer honoring Mother's Day. Maybe it was just a local phenomenon, Perhaps I was breaking a newly minted law or best practice protocol in getting kids to make Mother's Day cards. I don't know but there does seem to be a tendency to disenfranchise, disrespect, and devalue the majority to engage in a forced celebration of a freshly minted minority. There may be one kid out there who was given birth by someone who identifies as a dad. Tragically, for some kids, their mothers may have passed away. Occasionally a kid might have two mommies. Maybe a kid has two dads. These things can be worked around. I've had kids ask to make cards for grandmothers, step-moms, etc. But in our world, (I'm not talking about the comic book world) we seem inordinately delighted to cancel the majority in favor of the minority. How many moms would prefer to be called "Birthing and Lactating person" rather than "Mother." More and more organs of government and cultural influencers are opting for the former to categorize the highly esteemed mother-child relationship. The term "mother", is a universally understood and revered word but many want to replace it with some politically correct jargon that often reduces a person to their biological organs or biological functions. Their personhood is being erased. Not to mention, it adds to the confusion. Future soccer moms may need a Ph.D. in Gender Studies to figure out and fill out a form to have their pre-schooler kick a soccer ball. Or has that happened already?

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