Mother Mary Brownell at 86: What Are We Remembering of Her?

first_imgBusiness philosopher, Kevin Kruse said, “Life is about making an impact, not making an income.”It is predicated upon this philosophy that when the name Mary Brownell sounds in their ears, former Chief Justice Henry Reed Cooper, former Central Bank Governor Elias  Seleeby, banker C.TO. King, and many other prominent Liberians, recall their early school days, when they often shouted out, “Teacher Mary! Teacher Mary!”When women in close age range with her hear the name, they are quickly reminded of her bold, forthright approach to public issues, and the popular name, Mary B spills out. Mother Brownell could have no other inscription on her comfortable jeep’s license plate besides “Mary B. 3.”Residents of Brewerville,  outside Monrovia upon hearing the name without any comment following, will tremble because the bearer of that name is the one who initiated a school built in that part of Montserrado to provide free education to children of impoverished parents.Politicians also remember the name Mary Brownell as one who worked for the National Elections Commission (NEC) and left with a clean record.Parents, on the other hand, will sit and wish that they had been as successful as she in raising her children, including the celebrated Liberian musician and social activist, Miatta Fahnbulleh, and her brother, Dr. H. Boimah Fahnbulleh, Jr.Miatta says Mother B’s glittering (impressive) record of achievements remains in the life of her children and those of their generation for whom Ma Mary Brownell is indeed an inspirational figure in Liberian history.Her fellow parishioners of St. Thomas Episcopal Church on Camp Johnson Road, Monrovia, upon hearing the name, often praise God for giving them such a mother who motivates them when they are depressed.Mother Brownell was born 86 years ago today March 12, 1929, in Cavalla, Maryland County.  At age five, she was brought to Monrovia to begin her education. Her educational sojourn began at the Suehn Baptist Mission in the then Bomi Territory, (now Bomi County) in 1937 when women were not yet in the mainstream of education. Following the completion of her primary education, she enrolled at the high school division of Liberia College known subsequently as Laboratory High School and Martha Tubman Academy, where she obtained her high school diploma.With a passion for teaching, she pursued studies in Education and first obtained a Bachelor’s degree from Teacher’s College, University of Liberia, and later a Master’s from San Francisco State College (now University).  She became a passionate and lifelong teacher.  She started at the St. Patricks School and later became principal of the Botswain School.She also served as an administrator in the Monrovia Consolidated School System (MCSS), the Catholic School System and the Bong Mines School in Bong County.Mother Brownell is now retired and is not too often seen in public gatherings. One of the major events Mother Brownell attended in recent years was the University of Liberia’s commencement convocation in December, 2013, where she served as Commencement Speaker.In spite of her age, Mother Mary Brownell’s intellect and voice are still sharp—so sharp that she can perform even the teaching role.Comparing her youthful days to that of today’s generation, she wonders what will become of young people of today and Liberia in general considering the poor orientation of today’s youth.“There are too many differences between your days and my days,” she told a duo of Daily Observer reporters.  “During our days, children, especially girls, could not stay outdoors after 6 p.m., and when any parent of a different family saw a neighbor’s child outside after 6 p.m., that parent would discipline the child and the child would not be a fool enough to complain to his or her parents, lest he or she receive double punishment.” “In our days no single parent disciplined or trained a child, but parents did it collectively.  No different parent will do it for another person’s child today because either the child insults that person or his/her parents take that person to court,” she said.Mother Brownell is of the strongest view that because female children at early ages are used as bread winners and are allowed to be exposed to the streets, cases of rape as well as unwanted pregnancy continue to rise as do children without responsible fathers, found daily on the streets.These circumstances, she said, will also increase poverty and crime in the country.She frowned at gender advocacy groups, including the Ministry of Gender and Child Protection, for doing little to initiate programs that will address the plight of street girls, noting, “They (advocacy groups) are only there to advocate for funds that will not be used to address the purposes for which they are intended.”Mother Brownell said her 86th birth anniversary will, for personal reasons, not be elaborately celebrated.Nevertheless, the invitation is still extended to friends, acquaintances, loved ones and well wishers to pass by and share the affection and joy of the day.For all that Mother Mary Brownell is remembered for in the Liberian society, all who have felt her impact, including the owner of this intellectual property, are eager to wish her a Happy 86th Birthday and 50 more robust years!Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more


Flatlife Has More Genes Than It Needs

first_imgThe genome of a placozoan (“flat animal”) shows more complexity than one would expect for a simple life form.  According to evolutionists, it shows that even a barely-differentiated animal presumably ancestral to complex animals had the genetic toolkit of its more-advanced descendents.    Trichoplax adhaerens is a slimy-looking thing that sticks to aquarium walls.  Science Daily has a picture of it.  The article says the genome is “confounding [the] array of complex capabilities” because it “appears to harbor a far more complex suite of capabilities than meets the eye.”  Although the organism only has 4 or 5 cell types and no organs or gut, its genome “encodes a panoply of signaling genes and transcription factors usually associated with more complex animals.”  This includes genes for neurons even though it has no nerves, and hints of genes for sexual reproduction even though it usually divides by fission.  It even has a “parts list” for embryo formation but has not been observed to go through an embryo stage.    Another surprise is that T. adhaerens contains 80% of the same introns as humans – in much the same arrangement.  Introns have been considered genomic “junk” that must be removed during translation.  That these parts are “conserved” (unevolved) from a primitive animal to a human being seems to point to a function for introns and their specific arrangements.  Fruit flies and other advanced life, though, have far fewer introns.    The original paper in Nature1 summarized the surprises:The compact genome shows remarkable complexity, including conserved gene content, gene structure and synteny [i.e., conserved linkage without requiring colinearity] relative to human and other eumetazoan genomes.  Despite the absence of any known developmental program and only a modest number of cell types, the Trichoplax genome encodes a rich array of transcription factors and signalling genes that are typically associated with embryogenesis and cell fate specification in eumetazoans, as well as other genes that are consistent with cryptic patterning of cells, unobserved life history stages and/or complex execution of biological processes such as fission and embryonic development in these enigmatic creatures.One of the authors of the paper said, “Trichoplax has had just as much time to evolve as humans, but because of its morphological simplicity, it is tempting to think of it as a surrogate for an early animal.”Update 08/23/2008: Elisabeth Pennisi, reporting for Science,2 added rhetoric to the “surprise effect” coming from this genome.  Trichoplax “barely qualifies as an animal.” she said.  It is one millimeter long and covered with cilia.  It glides along like an amoeba.  It usually divides by budding or fission.  One biologist was quoted saying, “Yet this animal’s genome looks surprisingly like ours.”  Here are some other quotes from her news report:It’s a puzzle why Trichoplax, a seemingly primitive animal, has such a complex genome.Biologists had once assumed that complicated body plans and complex genomes went hand in hand.  But T. adhaerens’s genome … “highlights a disconnect between molecular and morphological complexity,” says Mark Martindale, an experimental embryologist at the University of Hawaii, Honolulu.  Adds Casey Dunn, an evolutionary biologist at Brown University, “It is now completely clear that genomic complexity was present very early on” in animal evolution.Despite being developmentally simple–with no organs or many specialized cells–the placozoan has counterparts of the transcription factors that more complex organisms need to make their many body parts and tissues.“Many genes viewed as having particular ‘functions’ in bilaterians or mammals turn out to have much deeper evolutionary history than expected, raising questions about why they evolved,” says Douglas Erwin, an evolutionary biologist at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) in Washington, D.C. 1.  Srivastava et al, “The Trichoplax genome and the nature of placozoans,” Nature 454, 955-960 (21 August 2008) | doi:10.1038/nature07191.2.  Elizabeth Pennisi, “Genomics: ‘Simple’ Animal’s Genome Proves Unexpectedly Complex,” Science, 22 August 2008: Vol. 321. no. 5892, pp. 1028-1029, DOI: 10.1126/science.321.5892.1028b.The predictions of evolutionists that they would find Darwin’s tree of life in the genomes of organisms has been falsified.  Genomes do not show a straightforward progression from simple to complex, with gradual acquisition of new function over time.  The evo-talk in the article and paper sounds forced and superfluous.  It may be “tempting” to “think of it” as a primitive evolutionary thing, but moral philosophy admonishes us to overcome temptation.    The genetic toolkit appears established early on.  In addition, gene count, chromosome number, and intron content appear indifferent to evolutionary relationships.  Trichoplax shows that simple organisms can have complex genes they don’t use – another contradiction with evolutionary expectations.  The relationship between genotype and phenotype appears much more elaborate than any evolutionary biologist expected.  Whatever is going on, it is time to think outside Darwin’s black box.(Visited 19 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more


The Creator of EarthCaching talks about the 10th Anniversary

first_img SharePrint RelatedYour Path to Platinum EarthCachingFebruary 11, 2015In “Community”Inside Geocaching HQ Podcast Transcript (Episode 13): EarthCachesMay 10, 2018In “Community”Happy Birthday EarthCaching – EarthCaches Turn 8 TodayJanuary 10, 2012In “Cache In Trash Out” EarthCache I, AustraliaEditor’s Note: Gary, Geoaware, placed the very first EarthCache on this date in 2004. Today there are more than 17,000 EarthCaches around the globe from the peaks of mountains to the desert floor. This is Gary’s story of that first EarthCache.Gary aka “Geoaware”By Gary, Geoaware: Ten years ago I was a lucky guy in the right place at the right time. The Geological Society of America (GSA) had just employed me to work on education and outreach programs, a GSA member mentioned the new game of geocaching to my boss, and I was on holiday here with my kids looking at the rocks in Australia.So that day we wandered around a rock platform that I had been on a thousand times before but now with a new purpose. How could I bring others here geocaching so they left learning something new about our amazing planet?  Fossils, evidence for glaciers, weathering – so much in such a short walk. This was the perfect place. And so EarthCache I GCHFT2 was born—and so was the concept of an EarthCache: a place where the Earth was the treasure. A place where you would learn about the geology of the planet while you geocached. If you have not experienced an EarthCache, its time you tried. It’s a different experience – but who would ever not enjoy learning when it’s fun!Since then we have gone through many changes, twists and turns – always in partnership with Geocaching.com and always edging forward so that we can add to the game of geocaching as well as teaching people about our Earth. We even now have a Mega-Event held each year just for EarthCachers (GC4JD1B).What an amazing ten years the EarthCache program has had. Since the first EarthCache was placed, four million people have visited over 17,000 EarthCaches in 165 countries around the globe. It is a truly outstanding impact to get people outside, have fun and learn about our dynamic planet all at the same time. And all of that amazing credit goes to the whole community that visits, develops and loves EarthCaches and the wonderful group of community volunteers – the ‘geoawares’ that work with EarthCache developers to get the very best EarthCache submissions published.EarthCache: Gullfoss (Golden Falls)Finally, I can’t ignore the amazing support of The Geological Society of America, who sees this program as the jewel in its outreach to the wider community.I hope you will all celebrate the amazing 10th year of EarthCaches by finding and logging an EarthCache or even joining the next 3rd International EarthCache Mega-Event! EarthCache in Dorest, UKcenter_img Share with your Friends:Morelast_img read more