“Gifted Hands by Dr. Ben Carson”
By Donna Garner
A few minutes ago, we finished watching Gifted Hands on TV tonight. We had seen the movie some years ago, but we love it more each time we watch it. We particularly enjoyed it tonight after watching the recent speech that Dr. Ben Carson made at the National Prayer Breakfast on 2.7.13. This speech went viral and captured the hearts of America.
Excerpts from Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families -- 2.11.13:
Ben Carson is a Johns Hopkins neurosurgeon who spoke before Obama at this year’s breakfast last week. In his speech, Carson denounced political correctness and pointed out that freedom of speech is one of our God-given rights and that political correctness tries to smother it.
He asserted that it’s immoral to pile debt on our children and grandchildren. Without mentioning Obamacare by name, Carson lambasted the idea that government should control healthcare and endorsed a plan of personal responsibility and the idea that every child should be given a personal health savings account.
But perhaps the most powerful part of Carson’s remarks (and those he gave in subsequent interviews) was his commentary about his own upbringing. Carson grew up in a home that is exactly the kind to which Obama and liberals insist we have an obligation to make massive transfers of wealth.
Carson was raised by a single mother in Detroit. Carson’s mother had very little money or formal education, but she was very observant. She told her children that she didn’t know anyone on welfare who later got off of it. She worked hard to make sure she never had to accept being a ward of the state.
She became a maid to three families but still had time to teach her kids that watching TV would get them nowhere. She insisted that they read two books a week, and even required that they write book reports about what they read. She would draw smiley faces and make other affirmative comments in the margins of the reports. The kids didn’t know it then, but they later discovered that their mother did not know how to read.
Carson’s story underscores that on the road to success every child needs an adult (preferably two!) for whom that child is the most important thing in the world. What kids need are loving parents, not liberal bureaucrats. Carson’s life and comments are an indictment of government dependency.
Not surprisingly, some of the same liberals in Congress who last year defended Obama’s overt politicization of the Prayer Breakfast are angry at Carson’s comments at this year’s event, which did not even mention Obama.
Link to Dr. Ben Carson’s National Prayer Breakfast speech on 2.7.13:
Personal remarks from Donna Garner:
From 1990 when Dr. Ben Carson first published his book Gifted Hands until the day I retired from teaching, I kept this book on my classroom bookshelf for students to check out. To get points on their six weeks’ average, my students had to give an oral book report in which they proved to me that they had read their books “from cover to cover.” They loved Gifted Hands; and they were truly inspired by Ben Carson’s true-life story of faith in God, hard work, perseverance, dedication, and the importance of having a servant’s heart. My students caught his message about the importance of reading great pieces of literature; and for some, this was enough to motivate them to read more of the high-quality books on my booklist.
The book can be ordered at amazon.com (or from some other company) for the price of $1.67 (used) to $11.98 (new). Every parent should make sure that his children read this inspiring book.
From the Publisher of Gifted Hands:
In 1987, Dr. Benjamin Carson gained worldwide recognition for his part in the first successful separation of Siamese twins joined at the back of the head. The extremely complex and delicate operation, five months in the planning and twenty-two hours in the execution, involved a surgical plan that Carson helped initiate.
Carson pioneered again in a rare procedure known as hemispherectomy, giving children without hope a second chance at life through a daring operation in which he literally removed one half of their brain.
But such breakthroughs aren't unusual for Ben Carson. He's been beating the odds since he was a child.
Raised in inner-city Detroit by a mother with a third grade education, Ben lacked motivation. He had terrible grades. And a pathological temper threatened to put him in jail. But Sonya Carson convinced her son that he could make something of his life, even though everything around him said otherwise.
Trust in God, a relentless belief in his own capabilities, and sheer determination catapulted Ben from failing grades to the top of his class--and beyond to a Yale scholarship . . . the University of Michigan Medical School . . . and finally, at age 33, the directorship of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. Today, Dr. Ben Carson holds twenty honorary doctorates and is the possessor of a long string of honors and awards, including the Horatio Alger Award, induction into the "Great Blacks in Wax" Museum in Baltimore, Maryland, and an invitation as Keynote Speaker at the 1997 President's National Prayer Breakfast.
Gifted Hands is the riveting story of one man's secret for success, tested against daunting odds and driven by an incredible mindset that dares to take risks. This inspiring autobiography takes you into the operating room to witness surgeries that made headlines around the world--and into the private mind of a compassionate, God-fearing physician who lives to help others. Through it all shines a humility, quick wit, and down-to-earth style that make this book one you won't easily forget. Dr. Benjamin Carson is director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He lives with his wife, Candy, and three sons in West Friendship, Maryland.