By Kevin Williams
Okay, we have a bunch of Amish-related stuff in the news this morning....
WOOD COUNTY, WISCONSIN: This is a rural slice of central Wisconsin and county officials are proposing stringent new regulations on Amish buggies and their drivers, regulations that, if enacted, some fear will drive the Amish out of the county. SIGH, this is tough. 5 or 10 years ago I probably would have sided squarely with the Amish on this one, but as I have gotten older and have children of my own….I don’t know…I mean the most powerful change comes from within, I wish the Amish would just adopt some of this stuff on their own instead of having it imposed….so I’m a little conflicted. On the issue of child safety seats in buggies…mmmmm, that may be misguided. In a car on car crash the car seat is meant to cushion the child from impact and keep them still so they aren’t thrown out. But a buggy-car crash is different, often you want to be ejected. When you have a two ton-car barreling into your made-of-matchsticks buggy often your best hope is to be thrown out. I’m worried a mandatory car seat would simply close off any avenue of escape. That said, though, a drivers license from a buggy? Insurance? Minimum driving age? I think all of those are decent ideas that the Amish everywhere should consider adopting. I am all for totally respecting Amish religious beliefs, but the thought of a child on a pony cart getting killed by automobile gives me cause for pause… Click here to read about the situation in Wisconsin.
MENNONITE MEAT MEET: The Mennonite Central Committe mobile meat canner was on the move over the past week, this time into Oklahoma. Excellent article here.
BELSNICKLE: Geez, this is a bit creepy....a bit of Pennsylvania Dutch lore featuring a Santa confederate going around with a whip scoping out naughty kids. Glad we don't have Belsnickle as a tradition here, I think my 4-year-old daughter would be terrified! Click here to read more.
MY AMISH HOME - MILLIE'S CORNY CHICKEN BAKE: Check in with Illinois Amish columnist Millie Otto an see what she has been up to this week, plus get a recipe for "corny chicken bake." Check it out here
THE MENNONITE CARD GAME: Well, Dutch Blitz is a favorite among the Amish, so why not a Mennonite card game? Now, thanks to an Indiana artist and graphic designer, there is one. Click here to read more about it.