Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Presidents Day

            Today is Presidents Day, a day set apart to honor all Presidents of the United States. Once upon a time, long, long ago, in a nation long forgotten, we celebrated Abraham Lincoln’s birthday on February 12 and George Washington’s birthday on February 22. Then some deep thinker thought that we should lump all the presidents into one holiday. I do not agree with whoever it was for several reasons, one of which is that some presidents deserve honor and others do not.

            Obviously, I am not the only person with this opinion because I found an article titled “George Washington Deserves His Own Day, Not Presidents Day” by David Azerrad at The Daily Signal. Here are just a few paragraphs, but please the article.

Washington, the “indispensable man” of the revolution who was rightly extolled for being “first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen,” has not been lumped together with the likes of James Buchanan, Jimmy Carter, Franklin Pierce, and John Tyler.

It gets worse. Washington’s good name and great legacy are now shamelessly invoked to justify positions that he would never have envisaged.

In a Time Magazine special edition on Washington, historian Joseph Ellis matter-of-factly remarks: “He began the political tradition that produced a Union victory in the Civil War, the Federal Reserve Board, Social Security, Medicare and, more recently, Obamacare.”

Washington, who called on Americans to display “pious gratitude” for their Constitution and warned against any “change by usurpation,” is now a partisan of the sprawling welfare state and the unprecedented individual mandate.

Ellis even has the gall to hail Washington – the man who gracefully and voluntarily relinquished power after two terms when he could have stayed on for life – as the father of “strong executive leadership” and the precursor to Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who stayed in office for an unprecedented 12 years.

            Obviously, Ellis is another deep thinker! Do you think that he really believes what he wrote? I hope that you see from those paragraphs why we need to have an annual day to remember our first President, even George Washington. He must be turning over in his grave for being linked to FDR and Obamacare! Be sure to read the entire article here.


            I believe that George Washington deserves to be honored annually because he was a great man. I also believe that we should celebrate his birthday every year in order to teach the rising generation about this great man. None of us has seen a President that could measure up to George Washington! We need to honor him for being the first as well as to teach others why he was so great.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Second Amendment Works

            The topic of discussion for this Constitution Monday must be the Second Amendment because of the school shooting in Florida last week. Every single time that some deranged individual decides to shoot up a school, liberals at all levels start demanding more gun control. They want more laws in order to stop people who do not obey the laws that are already on the books. The young man who killed seventeen students and staff members and injured several others did not pay any attention to the state law that proclaims school to be “gun-free zones.” Why would another law stop him?

            Before going any further, I want to review the Second Amendment, which was passed by Congress on September 25, 1789, and ratified by the states on December 15, 1791. It is the second of ten amendments in the Bill of Rights. It says: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on June 26, 2015, in a 5-4 majority, that the Second Amendment confers the right to keep and bear arms on individuals.

            Along with the liberals who keep demanding more gun control laws in an actual effort to control people and not guns, there are people advocating for training teachers to handle weapons safely. At some time during 2016 the Claude Independent School District in West Texas put that theory into practice. The school district now has trained and armed teachers on their campus. 

Staff members who carry are required to practice at a shooting range once a month. They also train with the Armstrong County Sheriff’s Office and the Department of Public Safety.

            In addition to having armed staff members on the campus, the district informs the public of the situation. They place prominent signs on the campuses that state the following: “ATTENTION: Please be aware that the staff at Claude ISD is armed and may use whatever force necessary to protect our students.” I believe that this sign is much more of a deterrent than a sign that proclaims: “Gun-Free Zone.”

            One may ask how the parents and students feel about guns on the school campus. All reports are that the students and their parents feel safer knowing that the school staff is prepared to protect the children from any would-be shooter.

            Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd in Florida might have heard about the school district in West Texas – or not. However, he wanted to arm teachers and end gun-free school zones nationwide. He says, “There has to be a line-of-defense.” It’s not something we want to do – it’s something we have to do.”

            Judd calls his idea the “Sentinel Program.” It is a plan to “Arm teachers with concealed weapons and train them to effectively defend students should the need ever arise.” It is a program that is already at place at Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida, which is in Polk County.  

            The sheriff explains that only teachers with “impeccable, crime-free backgrounds” would be selected. The selected teachers would then “undergo rigorous training that includes meeting standards beyond those that Florida law enforcement must maintain. In addition, each selected teacher undergoes intense psychological evaluation.” Once a teacher passes the “rigorous training” and “intense psychological evaluation” they become “special deputy sheriffs” and are allowed to carry guns on school campuses. The program is active only in Polk County, but the sheriff is attempting to convince state leaders to implement it statewide.

            Armed staff members on school campuses are one way to protect the children from deranged shooters. Kelly Guthrie Raley, 2017-2018 “Teacher of the Year” at Eustis Middle School in Florida, sent out a Facebook post calling for a change in American culture. She looks at the nation as a whole and shows how it contributes to mass shootings. She seems to have no fear in stating the obvious, and puts the blame squarely on the decline of families and society. She was very pointed in her words, part of which is as follow.

Until we, as a country, are willing to get serious and talk about mental health issues, lack of available care for the mental health issues, lack of discipline in the home, horrendous lack of parental support when the schools are trying to control horrible behavior at school (oh no! Not MY KID. What did YOU do to cause my kid to react that way?), lack of moral values, and yes, I’ll say it-violent video games that take away all sensitivity to ANY compassion for others’ lives, as well as reality TV that makes it commonplace for people to constantly scream up in each other’s faces and not value any other person but themselves, we will have a gun problem in school. Our kids don’t understand the permanency of death anymore!!!

            Americans who understand why we have the Second Amendment and what it does are not willing to allow liberals to destroy the right to keep and bear arms. Yet, liberals continue to call for more gun control, as if it is the guns that need to be controlled. Intelligent people understand that the Second Amendment is there to protect Americans from their government. It has done so for more than 200 years and will continue to do so if allowed.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Zero Tolerance

            Last week Rob Porter resigned as White House staff secretary because two ex-wives accused him of domestic abuse. My first thought was wondering who was telling the truth. Are the ex-wives being honest about the alleged abuse, or is he a victim of the culture of attacks on men. I cannot imagine the women claiming abuse if it was not there, but I hate to think that it really happened. The thing that upsets me the most is the affect that this will have on The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

            It does not really matter whether Porter abused his wives or his wives are lying about being abused. The end result is that the Church will receive bad publicity. This is what upsets me! This article by Tara Isabella Burton is an example of what we can expect. 

Last week, White House aide Rob Porter resigned from his position after it emerged that both of his ex-wives had accused him of domestic abuse. But his ex-wives’ accounts, shared in the media, don’t just tell the story of two abusive marriages. They also reveal the structural and institutional failure of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (or, the Mormon Church) to protect women from toxic and abusive relationships.

            According to Burton, the Church is responsible to “protect women from toxic and abusive relationships.” How is the Church supposed to do it? As far as I know, no one in Church leadership positions ever tells members who to marry or who not to marry. They give counsel on how to choose wisely, but they do not force anyone to marry or to not marry. Each member is responsible to take the matter to the Lord in prayer and to follow the promptings that come. If we make a mistake, we have to live with knowing that we made a big error. Marriages can be saved and improved most of the time, but sometimes divorce must take place. However, we are each responsible for the decisions we make.

            Burton also blames “Mormon culture and theology” for reasons why priesthood leaders gloss over issues of domestic abuse. Mormon doctrine teaches the blessings of the ideal marriage, one that is within the reach of all couples, but only if both the husband and wife live righteous lives. Burton writes the following in an effort to blame Mormon doctrines and culture for covering up abuse.

In the Mormon tradition, only couples who have been married in a Mormon temple are capable of reaching the highest echelons of heaven. Moreover, a family that has bonded in this way will remain in heaven together.

Divorce or separation, in this theology, thus threatens a Mormon woman’s chances at heaven, not just for her but for her entire family, including her children.  

            The first paragraph is true. We are taught the doctrine that “marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God” and that “Marriage between man and woman is essential to [God’s] eternal plan” for the happiness of His children. We are also taught that our marriages can last for all eternity and that our families can be together forever –IF those marriages are performed in the proper place and by the proper authority AND if we live worthy of that blessing.

            Burton’s second paragraph is totally false. Once a man and woman go to the temple and make sacred covenants with God, they are each responsible to keep those covenants. If one spouse is abusive, unfaithful, or in any way breaks their covenants, a divorce can take place AND leave the blessings for the innocent spouse and the children entirely in place. Each person is responsible to keep the covenants he or she has made, and each will be held accountable for doing so. This does not mean that divorce is easy or pleasant or even good for the innocent spouse and children. It only means that eternal blessing remain in place for anyone who keeps their covenants.

            Another total falsehood that Burton writes is that domestic abuse is a normal part of Mormon community because women are taught to be submissive. As a woman in the Church, I know that women and girls are not taught to be submissive to the point of abuse. We are taught that we are daughters of God and are royalty. We are taught that men have the responsibility to preside, provide, and protect their wives and children, and we are responsible to support them in their righteous works. We are never taught to support them in unrighteousness. Men and young men are taught to treat women and girls with respect and kindness. Any man who uses priesthood authority to abuse wife or children is exercising unrighteous dominion and will be held accountable by God.

            Before anyone blames the priesthood for telling women to stay in abusive marriages, I must say that I have known many bishops, stake presidents, and other leaders. All of them encourage us to strengthen our marriages, but none of them tell us to stay in abusive marriages. They will encourage marriage and family counseling by qualified counselors, and they will continue to love and support both husband and wife. However, the decision to stay in the marriage or to get a divorce is left up to the individual.

            The Church has a zero tolerance policy for abuse. Eric Hawkins, Church spokesman wrote the following: 

It is difficult to speak to specific circumstances without complete information from all involved, but the position of the Church is clear: There is zero tolerance for abuse of any kind. Church leaders are given instruction on how to prevent and report abuse and how to care for those who have been abused.

            I am sorry that the Church is being blamed for the behavior of one or more members of the Church. Jesus Christ stands at the head of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and faithful members of the Church try to follow His counsel as given through His prophets and apostles. Christ is perfect, but the people that He works with are imperfect. All of us are sinners in one way or another and stand in need of His grace. Members of the Church who behave in such a way as to bring untrue and/or unfavorable attention to the Church will be held accountable by God.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Overcoming Compulsive Study Habits

            Families, communities, and nations are strengthened when individuals overcome compulsive study habits that have negative consequences. When we do things compulsively, we may not be doing them for the best reasons. It is time to look at our habits and determine if we should overcome some of them.

            As part of a personal effort to improve my own study skills, I am reading a book titled The World Book of Study Power, volume 1, and I am attempting to share a little of what I learn with my readers. Teaching others what I have learned helps to solidify the information in my own brain and is, therefore, a valuable learning tool. Most of the information and ideas that follow comes from this book.

            The topic of compulsive study habits is particularly meaningful to me because I check, double-check, and triple-check my assignment list each week in order to be SURE that I turned in all of my assignments. I am terrified that I will forget to submit an assignment or lose a few points on an assignment. So this chapter is a good one for me to study!

            If we are compulsive in our study habits, we may be wasting time that could be better spent on other tasks. What are you compulsive about? Do you recopy your notes unnecessarily, or do you try to memorize every word of the chapter? If so, you might be wise to change some habits. If you are a parent and your child is obsessive about doing extra work, you might be able to give them some stress relieve.

Remember this: Success in studying depends partly on doing the job right, but even more on doing the right job. If you’re spending hours every night doing work that doesn’t need to be done, then your effort will be completely wasted.
You can do lots of things to strike a balance between too much work and too little. It’s important to make sure you do the right job and do it right….

            The book continues by suggesting some ways to be more effective and efficient without working so hard. In hopes that I and my readers will learn from them, I am including the five suggested actions we can take to overcome compulsive study habits.

1. Think about your study goals. What are you studying for? [Are you reading to find ideas for a class discussion or essay? Are you studying for a test? If so, what sort of test is it?] If you’re clear about why you’re studying, you can focus your energy on reaching that goal.

2. Decide your priorities. Put each task – reading, writing, preparing a report – into a specific order and schedule.

3. Think about the kinds of questions you usually see on tests in the class for which you are studying. If you were making the test for this material, what would you include?

4. If you have been given questions to use in completing an assignment, be sure you understand their meaning and scope before you begin studying.

5. Try to imagine where you will have to recall what you’ve learned. [Small group, whole class, debate, quiz?] Adapt your studying to the way you’ll be using what you learn.

            Each of us has many tasks to perform each day. When we have compulsive study habits, we waste time doing things that we do not really need to do. We can decrease the amount of stress in our lives and have time left over to do something with family or friends if we cut out unnecessary tasks. We can strengthen our families, communities, and nation by overcoming compulsive study habits.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Freedom from Violence

            The liberty principle for this Freedom Friday is the simple fact that all people deserve to be free from violence. Every person – black or white, young or old, male or female, liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican – deserves to be safe from violence; yet violent people continue to prey upon innocent people.

            Another school shooting took place on Valentine’s Day, and this one was at a high school in Parkland, Florida. It is a different state and a different school, but it brings the same results. First, there is the heartbreak and sorrow of losing loved ones and friends. Second, there is the cry for more gun control. It is insane at how quickly these calls come! If the killer had killed 17 children and injured dozens of others at a bus stop by running over them with a car, there would be no call to ban cars. Yet, people immediately start calling for more gun control every time some maniac goes crazy and starts killing.

            Why is there a call to ban guns because a person with evil in his heart misused a gun? There were already gun control laws on the books that should have protected the students at that Florida high school. The school was declared a “gun-free zone,” and there was a law in place banning guns from the campus. If laws alone could protect the students, that law should have done the trick. In addition, the shooter obeyed the laws for purchasing the gun. The FBI says that the rifle was purchased legally. Why didn’t the current gun laws protect the students?

            The answer to that question is that laws are only obeyed by law-abiding citizens. Every single gun could be taken from law-abiding citizens of the United States, and there would still be people killed with guns. Why? Because it is not the law-abiding citizen that goes around killing other people! It is someone who has gone mentally insane either temporarily or permanently, or it is plain evil. At any rate, it is the person behind the gun that is doing the killing, not the gun itself. I have been around guns for my entire life, and I know many people who own guns. I know for sure that not one of those guns has been used to deliberately kill another person. In fact, I personally know only one person who was killed with a gun, and he was killed in a hunting accident. It was an accident, not murder! Guns cannot kill anyone by themselves. They must have somebody willing to pull the trigger.

            So, instead of calling for more gun laws to control the law-abiding citizens of America, we should be taking a good, solid look at our society. When I was a student in high school, classmates brought their rifles to school and left them locked in their vehicles during the school day. I lived in a rural area, and the students hunted for deer on their way from school. It was a common occurrence to have rifles on the school campus, yet there were zero murders at the school. Why?

            This is the big question that we should be asking. Why are there so many school shooting now when there were hardly any prior to the massacre at Columbine High School in April 1999? What has happened to society in less than 20 years? Is it the breakdown of the family unit? Are parents too busy now to teach their children right from wrong? Is it too much technology? Is it video games? Are drugs too easily obtained? Has the whole human race suddenly gone crazy? Instead of calling for more gun control, I suggest that we demand answers to these questions and others like them.

            I also suggest that we discuss the reason for the Second Amendment and why so many people want to destroy it. The Second Amendment is not about hunting or recreational shooting. It is the Founders’ answer to tyranny from the government. The Founders understood that no government would go against an armed population. This is why they wrote into the Bill of Rights the Second Amendment, the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. They wanted the populace to have the capability to protect themselves from the government if need be. So, start asking why people want to take this right away from law-abiding citizens!

            I have watched the following video titled “This is the best and smartest gun argument I have heard yet!” several times, but I think that it is time to watch it again. I hope that you will take the seven minutes to watch the video in which a “virtual President of the United States” discusses murder, violence, and insanity.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Not Ashamed of the Gospel of Christ

            I am continuing my studies of the teachings of the Apostles after the death of Jesus Christ, and I thought that I would share some truths with my readers. While studying I found a familiar scripture in Romans 1:16, which says the following.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

            What does it mean to you to be “not ashamed of the gospel of Christ”? Elder Dallin H. Oaks, a living Apostle who was then a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and is now the First Counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has an excellent answer.

Each of us has many opportunities to proclaim our belief to friends and neighbors, fellow workers, and casual acquaintances. I hope we will take these opportunities to express our love for our Savior, our witness of his divine mission, and our determination to serve him.

If we do all of this, we can say, like the Apostle Paul, `I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth.’ (Rom. 1:16.)” (“Witnesses of Christ,” October 1990). 

            Elder Oaks tells us that we have many opportunities to share the blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ with the people around us. We do not need to travel miles from home and go among strangers. We just need to be willing to speak with family members, friends, and neighbors. The Apostle Peter gives a similar answer to the question in 1 Peter 3:15 when he said the following.

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.

            Peter tells us that we should always be ready to answer questions about the gospel. Then we will be prepared to share our knowledge with anyone who may ask about it. I decided to “cluster” – like a cluster of grapes - some scriptures around Paul’s statement in Romans. I included Peter’s statement as well as the next four scriptures. Each scripture gives a little more counsel concerning not being ashamed of the gospel.

I will speak of thy testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed (David in Psalms 119:46). 

            David tells us that we should not be ashamed of the gospel even when speaking to kings, so we should not worry about sharing the gospel with commoners like ourselves. Matthew, still another Apostle, tells us that we can run into big problems if we become ashamed of Christ.

But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven (Matthew 10:33). 

            Matthew’s warning is not the only one. Nephi, an ancient American prophet, gave further warning to his people about being ashamed of Christ.

But, behold, my beloved brethren, thus came the voice of the Son unto me, saying: After ye have repented of your sins, and witnessed unto the Father that ye are willing to keep my commandments, by the baptism of water, and have received the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost, and can speak with a new tongue, yea, even with the tongue of angels, and after this should deny me, it would have been better for you that ye had not known me (2 Nephi 31:15). 

            Matthew served warning to the people in his day in the old world, and Nephi warned the people of his day in ancient America. The Prophet Joseph Smith warned the people of our day with similar words in Doctrine and Covenants 101:1-5. The Saints were attempting to establish homes in Van Buren, Lafayette, and Ray Counties in Missouri after being driven from their homes in Jackson County, Missouri. They were still being persecuted and receiving death threats. They had lost homes, furniture, clothing, livestock, and other personal property, and many of them had lost their crops. They were suffering difficult times. It was under these extreme conditions that the Prophet received the following words.

1 Verily I say unto you, concerning your brethren who have been afflicted, and persecuted, and cast out from the land of their inheritance –

2 I, the Lord, have suffered the affliction to come upon them, wherewith they have been afflicted, in consequence of their transgressions;

3 Yet I will own them, and they shall be mine in that day when I shall come to make up my jewels.

4 Therefore, they must needs be chastened and tried, even as Abraham, who was commanded to offer up his only son.

5 For all those who will not endure chastening, but deny me, cannot be sanctified.

            Apostles and Prophets have counseled us to stand strong in the gospel of Jesus Christ before kings and commoners and to be ever ready to share the gospel. They have also warned us of the consequences that will come if we deny Jesus Christ. These consequences are: (1) Christ will deny us to the Father. (2) We would be better off if we had never known Him. (3) We must endure chastening in order to be sanctified. The simple truth is that we can avoid the consequences if we follow the counsel to be ever ready to share the blessings of the gospel in our lives. In doing so, we can follow the example shown by President Thomas S. Monson.

            When President Monson was First Counselor to President Gordon B. Hinckey, he shared an experience that took place many years previously (“That All May Hear,” April 1995). He was on a flight from San Francisco, California, to Los Angeles, California, and his seat mate was a beautiful young woman who was a flight attendant. He noticed that she was reading a familiar book, A Marvelous Work and a Wonder, and he wondered if he should say something to her. After mustering up his courage, he said, “Excuse me. You must be a Mormon.”

            The young woman replied that she was not and wondered why he was asking that question. He then explained that LeGrand Richards, the author of the book, was a prominent leader of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She indicated that she had received the book from a friend and was curious about it.

            Meanwhile, President Monson was wondering if he should say more about the Church. He says that the words of Peter (as quoted above) came into his mind: “Be ready always to give an answer…” He decided to share his testimony with her. He shared how it had been his privilege to work with Elder Richards in printing his book. He mentioned Elder Richard’s great missionary spirit and how thousands of people had embraced the gospel after reading his book. He spent the remainder of the trip answering her question about the Church. He asked if he could have missionaries visit her at her home, and she replied affirmatively. When he returned home, he contacted the mission president and the stake president to advise them of his conversation with the young woman and to let them know that he had sent further reading material. He suggested that sister missionaries be sent to teach the young woman.

            Several months later President Monson received a telephone call from the stake president. He asked President Monson if he remembered sitting beside a flight attendant on a trip from San Francisco to Los Angeles earlier in the fall. President Monson replied that he did. The stake president then handed the telephone to the young woman who had been recently baptized and confirmed a member of the Church. She expressed gratitude to him for sharing the gospel with her, and his heart was filled with joy.

            Like President Monson, each of us can be prepared to share the gospel with the people who surround us. We do not know who will accept the gift, but we must offer it to everyone. By doing so, we will be showing that we are not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The World within Hamlet

            When Shakespeare wrote Hamlet, he told the story of a young man who returns from the university only to find his life turned upside down. Upon his arrival at his home for the funeral of his father, the king of Denmark, Prince Hamlet learns that his Uncle Claudius has seized the throne and married his mother, Gertrude. As if these circumstances are not bad enough, a ghost tells him that his father was murdered by the current king. Thus, the stage is set for a great story as well as some interesting lessons. This essay will explore what we can learn from Hamlet about redemption, moral truths, and a just society.

            Redemption takes place whenever individuals seek to help someone else, to make something right, or to make the world a better place. When an individual seeks redemption for themselves, they are actually asking for mercy. When a person seeks redemption for another, it is an act of giving mercy.  There are numerous examples of redemption within the world of Hamlet in addition to Hamlet’s constant attempt to redeem his father’s soul. One example is the way that Hamlet tries to convince his mother that she is living in an incestuous marriage and should end it. After Hamlet speaks strong words to her, Gertrude cries out, “O Hamlet, thou hast cleft my heart in twain.” (3.4.157) Hamlet answers, “O, throw away the worser part of it, / And live the purer with the other half. / Good night – but go not to my uncle’s bed. / Assume a virtue, if you have it not.” (3.4.158-61) Another powerful example of redemption is found at the end of the play when Hamlet tells his friend, Horatio, “If thou didst ever hold me in thy heart, / Absent thee from felicity awhile, / And in this harsh world draw thy breath in pain, / To tell my story.” (5.2.347-49) With these words, Hamlet seeks to offer redemption to others by learning from his unhappiness and the destruction of his entire family.

            Along with the theme of redemption, Hamlet teaches many moral truths within its lines. A moral truth is an eternal truth that is applicable to all people no matter where or when they live. Hamlet obviously knows the difference between right and wrong because of his comment upon learning that his mother is already married to his uncle. “Within a month … / She married. O, most wicked speed, to post / With such dexterity to incestuous sheets! / It is not, nor it cannot come to good. / But break my heart, for I must hold my tongue.” (1.2.153-59) A second moral truth is taught by Hamlet’s girlfriend, Ophelia, as she agrees to protect her chastity but questions why there is a double standard between men and women. “I shall the effect of this good lesson keep / As watchman to my heart, but, good my brother, / Do not, as some ungracious pastors do, / Show me the steep and thorny way to heaven, / Whiles, like a puffed and reckless libertine, / Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads / And [follows not his own advice].” (1.3.45-51)

            Moral truths are essential in order to exercise both justice and mercy. Justice requires that there be a law before obedience can be required. Mercy requires that there be a way for the disobedient to be redeemed from the law. As both redemption and moral truths are included in the play, we know that Hamlet’s world is a just society.

            This essay shows some of the many examples in Hamlet of individuals seeking redemption for themselves or others as well as some moral truths of their time. The world within Hamlet is a just society because the people have moral truths to guide them as they seek more truth along with redemption for their sins. In addition, Shakespeare insures that the people who watch Hamlet are taught moral truths and the importance of seeking redemption.