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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (March 1, 1993)
Wanted: good home for puppy
With as many lawyers as we
have in the United States,
people have started mak
ing up uses for them.
For example, people now are hav
ing custody battles over household
pets. They actually go to lawyers,
draw up shared-custody settlements
and pay doggie support.
I’m a dog lover and understand
how attached people can get to a dog.
And I understand that relationships
between people don’t always work
out. But I can’t quite understand pay
ing thousands of bucks to ensure par
tial custody of a pooch.
I have a puppy of my own. I guess
T have to call her a dog now, seeing as
she weighs more than 50 pounds and
is as big as a house.
She lives with my boyfriend and
his family and has eaten them out of
house and home — literally. At the
last damage report, she had eaten their
couch, their curtains and their carpet.
In some ways, our dog is the big
gest commitment we have. It’s almost
like she’s our child. I hope the other
dogs don’t make fun of her for being
bom out of wedlock.
If we ever broke up, I wouldn’t be
able to just let go of the puppy. But I
can’t see myself running to Jacoby
and Meyers and acquiring legal repre
But thiscustody issue shows people
take their pets seriously. At least some
Just about everyone loves little
puppies. How could you not?
It takes a hard heart to resist a tiny,
furry, cuddly lump with the sweetest
eyes and perkiest disposition this side
of Shirley Temple.
In a lot of ways I like dogs more
than I like people. They make you
laugh, they’re completely honest and
they have an innate ability to judge
character that I admire and base my
opinions on. * -1 i ' f’"
In some ways, our
dog is the biggest
have. It’s almost like
she’s our child. I
hope the other dogs
don’t make fun of
her for being born
out of wedlock.
If there were some kind of journal
ism-puppy job out there, my career
would be assured. Maybe I could write
press releases for the Humane Soci
ety, but I think that would be sort of
It makes me sick to see dogs whose
fate rests on the generosity of a
stranger with a yard. It would break
my heart to go home at night and leave
Maybe we can think of this column
as a sort of DN doggie newsletter: I
just happen to know a little puppy
who needs a home.
A woman at work brought down
the puppy to try and find it a home.
Within minutes the newsroom was
filled with ooohs and aaahs and ev
eryone crowded around trying to get a
glimpse of it.
Before the hour was gone, the dog
had a new owner. Let’s call the ownec .
* Chris* because that’s his name. For a
Sounded good to me. The dog was
assured of a good home and I had a
good shot at a puppy-sitting position.
But things sort of fell apart.
The professor backed out. And
Chris discovered that having a dog
meant more than buying Purina and
chew toys. It means 4 a.m. trips to the
backyard, accidents under the couch
and chewed-up shoes.
I had a feeling things wpre going
awry when the look of adoration in
Chris’ eye changed to one of weary
acceptance. The dog had become a
After four days the dog still didn’t
have a name and I began to see that the
puppy love had faded.
Now, just like a Disney movie,
little No-Name is once again without
I can just picture her tiny black
and-white body fighting the elements
for survival. Probably some witch
like woman will kidnap her to make a
coat out of her.
I’d open my home to her if I had a
home. But I don’t even have a fork I
can call my own, let alone a plot of
land. And I have a feeling my house
mother wouldn’t approve of a four
Let’s think of No-Name as the pet
of the week. If you know someone
who can offer No-Name a good home
—one with loving, patient grown-ups
who understand and appreciate ca
nine personalities — call Chris.
If not, call anyway and try to guilt
him into keeping poor liule No-Name.
. Mott Bu» senior Bews-editorud and En
glish major, U> associate BMM. edUbrkrHf 4
Evangelicals take up academia
II n 1976, the arguably most im
portant political force in the
united States was an eclectic
group of Christians—the self-named
“evangelicals” — who crossed party
lines to vote Jimmy Carter into the
presidency. It was the days of “I found
it” bumper stickers and brother Jimmy
was the great born-again hope.
Of course, presidency in hand,
Carter jettisoned the conservative
cultural agenda the evangelicals had
voted for. Four years later, the politi
cally seasoned (read cynical)
evangelicals had shifted back to the
Republican Party with considerably
less enthusiasm, despite having a can -
didate who would prove true to his
The evangelicals are gloating again
— though this time it is in the aca
demic world. Their current hope is an
interpretation of history, that word on
every sophomore’s lips:
“postmodernity.” Nobody really
knows what “postmodemity” is, but
alas, it sounds sexy, like “dialectical”
promise of postmodemity i&
apparently clear to evangelicals, how -
ever. Modem theology has ignored
evangelicals since the mid-19th cen
tury, claiming that they did not meet
modem academic standards. How
ever, as liberals embrace the first rule
sumably all theological views now
have rights to slake their claim on
truth about God.
If all truth is relative, so the argu
ment goes, then evangelicals have
just as much right to express their
version of it as Paul Tillich or the
Pluralism, however, is not a knowl
edge system in and of itself. Rather,
pluralism emerges when a culture's
dominant theory of knowledge loses
its force. The dominant theory of
knowledge in the West until now has
been classical foundationalism.
It was the days of “I
found it” bumper
stickers and brother
Jimmy was the great
Classical foundationalism asserted
that for (me to be justified in holding
a belief, the belief must be either of
two types. First, a belief is legitimate
if it is held as self-evident, incorri
gible or evident to the senses. The
classic example of this is the equation
1 plus 1 equals 2. This cannot be
“proved” as such, but it strikes us as
Beliefs that do not meet this first
test can also be legitimate if they are
logically and consistently derived
from this first principle. Hence, 2 plus
2 equals 4 could also be held as true,
building on the evidence that logi
cally follows from the first self-evi
However commanding this theory
has been since its inception in the
Enlightenment, it is perhaps
Modernity’s most costly casualty in
the war of ideas. Notre Dame philoso
pher Alvin Plantinga provides a cri
tique of foundationalism which is as
simple as it is powerful: If these two
conditions are the only legitimate basis
for holding a belief, now are the con
ditions themselves legitimated?
Where is foundationalism’s founda
This clever argument explains at
least a part of the evangelical’s new
found claim on academia. In it is a
defense to Modernity’s most com
mon attack on theism, the evidentialist
objection to belief in God. The objec
tion was built on David Hume’s first
principle: “A wise man proportions
his belief according to the evidence.”
Whenever an apologist would advo
cate God-belief, the skeptic would
ask that presumably devastating ques
tion: “Where’s your evidence?”
Thus, in his book, “Primary Phi
losophy," Michael Scriven could gush:
“Atheism is obligatory in the absence
of any evidence. The proper alterna
tive, where there is no evidence is not
mere suspension of belief, it is disbe
lief." But the rebuttal to this argument
embarrasses the skeptics with the ob
vious retort: “So you assert that God
does not exist. Where is your evi
Evangelical academics can-rest a
little easier unharassed by die gadfly
atheist objections that carried so much
weight in the past But a second theme
suggests that the postmodern academ -
ics will remain hostile to God believ
ers. Represented most prominently
by Michel Foucault, postmodems
speculate that the violence and suffer
ing of modem history is found in the
very structure of human existence:
Man is consumed by evil.
Evangelicals, of course, have
known this all along; it is a prototype
of Augustine’s understanding of Origi
nal Sin. It is notable, however, that
the postmodern version of Original
Sin — the will to power — draws on
Nietzsche, not on Augustine. None
need be reminded of Nietzsche’s con
tempt for the church. Now that
Nietzsche’s view of man has tri
umphed, one wonders how plural,
how tolerant those with unleashed
wills to power will be.
Young is a first year law student and a
Daily Nebraskan columnist.
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"An Event to Remember'
University of Illinois
* Michigan State
University of Nebraska
Tonight, March 1, at 7:30 p.m.
Don't miss the 1993 Masters Classic
when the University of Nebraska
women's gymnastics team flips into
action at what promises to be a great
Big Eight - Big Ten match-up.
For ticket information, call (402) 472-3111.
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