Daily Update: Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

National Vocation Awareness Week and Election Day

National Vocation Awareness Week continues. Today is Election Day, when in these United States voters will elect a new President; many state and local government offices are also elected on Election Day as a matter of convenience and cost saving.

National Vocation Awareness Week continues, and we pray, “God our Father, we thank you for calling men and women to serve in your Son’s Kingdom as priests, deacons, religious, and consecrated persons. Send your Holy Spirit to help us respond generously and courageously to your call. May our community of faith support vocations of sacrificial love in our youth. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.” The Election for federal offices occurs on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in even-numbered years; in the case of elections for President and Vice President, elections are held every four years, in years divisible by four, in which electors for President and Vice President are chosen according to the method determined by each state. The first federal election under the U.S. Constitution was held in 1788, and it had the lowest turnout in the history of American elections, with only 11 percent of eligible voters voting. To be eligible to vote at the time, one had to be a white male property owner. It was n0t until 1820 that American voters in every state were able to vote in the presidential election. Before that, many states simply let the state legislators choose presidential electors who cast votes for president. For the first 50 years of American elections, only 15 percent of the adult population was eligible to vote. Thomas Dorr was one of the first politicians to argue that poor people should be given voting rights. As a member of the Rhode Island legislature, Dorr argued that all white adult men should have the vote, regardless of their wealth. He incited a riot to protest the governor’s election of 1842 and went to prison for treason, but most states began to let poor white men vote soon after. Women won the right to vote in 1920, and many African-Americans were prevented from voting throughout the South until the passage of the Voting Rights Act in 1965. John Quincy Adams said: “Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.”

Last night our LSU Tigers Men’s Basketball team won their Exhibition game with the Reinhardt Eagles by the score of 113 to 80; our Tigers will play their first regular season college basketball game at home with the Wofford Terriers on November 12th. And our hapless New Orleans Pelicans lost their game with the Golden State Warriors by the score of 106 to 116.

I woke up in our rooms at the Inn at Lost Creek in Mountain Village, Colorado at 7:45 am. I posted to Facebook that today was Election Day, and did my Book Devotional Reading. We went down to breakfast, then Richard went to the store, and I did my Internet Devotional Reading. I then started reading the October 10th, 2016 issue of my Jesuit America magazine. We spent most of the day watching Criminal Minds episodes on TV, ate gumbo for lunch, and I finished reading the October 10th, 2016 issue of my Jesuit America magazine. At 4:30 pm we spent a nice hour in the private outside hot tub, and at 6:00 pm walked to Poacher’s Pub for dinner. In the College Football Playoff rankings LSU is ranked #24. Our New Orleans Pelicans are now playing an away Pro Basketball game with the Sacramento Kings; I will post the score of the game in tomorrow’s Daily Update.

Tomorrow is the Feast of the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica in Rome (324), and National Vocation Awareness Week continues. Tomorrow is also the birthday of my first cousin Marianne (1962); her brother John was born in 1952, her brother Tim in 1954, her sister Susan in 1956, me in 1958, my sister Liz Ellen in 1960, and Marianne in 1962. (The one who throws out the string is my brother Michael, who was born in 1955.) We plan to do nothing tomorrow, and to enjoy doing it.

Our Tuesday Evening Parting Quote comes to us from Bil Keane, American cartoonist. Born as William Keane in 1922 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he attended Catholic high school; while still in school he taught himself to draw by mimicking the style of the cartoons published in The New Yorker. His first cartoon was published on May 21st, 1936 on the amateur page of the Philadelphia Daily News. While in high school, his in-comic signature was spelled “Bill Keane”, but early in his career, he omitted the second L from his first name “to be distinctive”. Keane served in the United States Army from 1942 to 1945, drawing for Yank and creating the “At Ease with the Japanese” feature for the Pacific edition of Stars and Stripes. While stationed in Australia he met Thelma “Thel” Carne; they were married in Brisbane in 1948, settled in Roslyn, Pennsylvania, and had five children. Keane worked for the Philadelphia Bulletin as a staff artist from 1946 to 1959, where he launched his first regular comic strip Silly Philly. His first syndicated strip, Channel Chuckles, a series of jokes related to television, premiered in 1954 and ran until 1977. In 1959 the Keane family moved to Paradise Valley, Arizona. Keane’s daily newspaper panel The Family Circle premiered on February 29th, 1960. The strip generally used a single captioned panel with a round border, hence the name of the comic strip, which was changed following objections from the magazine Family Circle to The Family Circus. The parents in the strip are Bil and Thel, and the four children in the strip are fictionalized compositions of the Keane’s five children, with the children not aging (Billy has been seven years old since 1960). According to publisher King Features Syndicate, it is the most widely syndicated cartoon panel in the world, appearing in 1,500 newspapers. There are 89 compilations of Family Circus cartoons, and Family Circus has appeared in animated form in three television specials: A Special Valentine with the Family Circus (1978), A Family Circus Christmas (1979), and A Family Circus Easter (1982). Keane was the president of the National Cartoonists Society from 1981 to 1983 and was the emcee of the Society’s annual awards banquet for 16 years. Also from 1981 to 1983 Kean published the gag strip Eggheads in collaboration with his son Jeff Keane; when Keane retired from doing The Family Circus his son continued the strip. In 1998 Keane became the tenth recipient of the Arizona Heritage Award, joining, among others, Barry Goldwater, Sandra Day O’Connor, Mo Udall and Erma Bombeck. The Family Circus has been widely satirized in film, television, and other daily comic strips, and the official Family Circus website contains a sampling of syndicated comic strips from other authors which parody Keane’s characters (died 2011): “Yesterday’s the past, tomorrow’s the future, but today is a gift. That’s why it’s called the present.”

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