Father's Day & Guns

Copyright Rabbi Eli Hecht
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This month I had a strange experience. With Father's Day coming soon, I was feeling very grateful to my wife for giving me a loving home and six children. I know how hard she works to provide the family atmosphere we enjoy. Instead of receiving gifts, I decided to show my affection by  reversing the role. I would her give her a gift on Father's Day.

I found myself in a department store, overwhelmed by the various perfume displays. A clerk asked me if I needed some help. After explaining that the perfume was a gift for my wife, she asked what I had done. I laughed. It seems that in the '90s people only buy perfume when they have done something improper.

"Look," I said, "I love my wife and just want to buy her a gift, no more, no less." The clerk related our conversation to her co-workers.  Embarrassed, I wondered what was so incredible.

Now that I bought my wife a gift I might as well get one for myself.

Soon afterwards a Father's Day catalog came and I thought of some gifts.  The first thing to catch my eye was an outdoorsman "Huge Father's Day Sale."       

Lo and behold, the Father's Day special was nothing less than an array of guns ranging from double action to seven round magnums to a five barrel 20-round magnum composite stock, all steel barrel.  For the very special father there was a Rossi 357 stainless steel, six shot with neoprene grips.  For those concerned with safety, they could purchase a gun cabinet that  holds eight guns. I wondered which father needs all these things. Boy,  was this scary.

I have a learned intellectual friend, who pays his dues, educates his children, and has a happy marriage. He is big on non-violence, meaning no-guns. I asked him what would happen if his child got out of line?  He answered,  "I would teach him a lesson and beat him." I thought, how lucky his boys are; I was happy that he hadn't seen the outdoorsman ad. 

I guess we are  all affected by the world around us. No family is immune from the environment.  We tend to lose our sensitivity as time goes by. I know this is something we should  be concerned with.

In the past when we spoke about the nuclear family it meant a father, mother and children.  The term "nuclear" meant the basic or central part of a family.  Lately, the nuclear family has come to mean the disintegrating and explosive  family.                           

The mother, father and children who used to form the basic family are becoming a thing of the past. With all the unwed mothers and small children running around, Father's Day has become more of a nuisance with trying to track down which man fathered which child.

I wonder, whatever happened to the good old Father' Day, when Mom would make a dinner including apple pie, and the children would bring their Father' Day cards and hand-ade gifts.  Instead we take Dad out for dinner where he won't be reminded of the home he built. 

Concerned that this may have penetrated my home, I asked my son, "What do you think of Father's Day?⬠ He ran to get our New Book of  Knowledge Encyclopedia,   and read "Spokane, Washington, is said to be the first city that observed Father's Day in 1910. In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the third Sunday in June as Father's Day.  Roses are the Father's Day flowers; red to be worn for a living father and white if the father is dead." 

Then my boy turned to me and said, "Father's Day is every day.  It says clearly in the Ten Commandments, Honor your Father and Mother." 

That statement is the nicest Fathers Day gift you can get.