Apr 05, 2003
Ron Shelton's powerfully unsettling Dark Blue is about the coming apart of a Los Angeles cop. Eldon Perry (Kurt Russell) is about to make lieutenant, and he is deeply entrenched in the LAPD's boys' club network. But his blustery macho armor encases the memory of his murder of an innocent suspect. He's never forgiven himself for it, and the guilt is eating away at him; he's become a mass of self-loathing (and an alcoholic).
Is it dangerous to dwell upon heaven? Many of the world’s great religious teachers seem to have thought so. Confucius told his disciples to pay respect to the spirits, but keep them at a distance; it was the will of heaven, he believed, that we keep our eyes trained on earth. What becomes of the enlightened after death was one of the ten questions the Buddha refused to answer because indulging opinions on such matters is not conducive to liberation. The sages of classical Judaism displayed similar restraint.
When war or national crisis sets our hearts churning, people normally accustomed to taking their cues from the daily news suddenly discover that Pentagon briefings, op-ed pieces and Oval Office updates provide little consolation for their deep spiritual distress. They turn to the one source they believe might have a spiritually significant word to utter—the church. And well they should.
In his State of the Union speech, President Bush set a goal of achieving high-quality, affordable health care for all Americans. “We must work toward a system in which all Americans have a good insurance policy,” he said, so that people can “choose their own doctors, and seniors and low-income Americans receive the help they need.”