I fear for our future.

We are at war, under attack, but we cannot seem to figure out who our enemies are.

Since the beginning of these United States of America, we have trained soldiers to fight for the country, swearing them in by making them vow to defend the Constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”

But somewhere along the line, we decided military personnel here in the United States shouldn’t have loaded weapons — making them sitting ducks for someone like Muhammed Youssef Abdulazeez, who killed four marines and a sailor last week in Tennessee.

Members of IS, ISIL, ISIS — call them what you will — have been exhorting stateside followers to jump into jihad and start killing military people here at home. Yet we leave the doors open to any armed foe bent on murder and terror.

I admit I have mixed feelings. Since 9/11, we have repeatedly been told that our enemy is not the Muslim. I have tried to believe that, but doing so is difficult when there is no evidence that most terrorism since has been committed, not by Presbyterians or Hindus but Muslims.

I’ve read a minimal bit of the Koran and it didn’t take many pages to get to parts that instruct faithful Muslims to kill infidels who do not convert to Islam. That tenet, I understand, has been part of the faith since it started.

So I try not to hold a grudge against Islam, the religion. I do not hold all Muslims at fault for terrorism. But Islam? That seems to be another story.

I guess everyone has a different opinion.

The trouble is, we’re engaged in a fight for our lives and our enemy is this blurry, ill-defined specter — you may think he’s one person, I may think he’s someone else. How do we win, how do we survive, how do we prevail over such confusingly phantom opponents?

State-sponsored terrorism. Domestic terrorism. Lone-wolf terrorism. Is any of that different from street crime?

And how do we protect ourselves and our families?

How do we win a war like this?

This is all just an accident.

It started when I started to develop pain in both hips. My doctor, Mike Rogers, started a series of tests in an effort to determine what might be causing the pain.

Somewhere along the way, I had some blood in my urine — just one day and just for a few hours that day.

Still, it prompted other tests and it was a CT- Scan that showed  what’s called a fistula — a channel that had developed where it shouldn’t be, running between the bladder and the colon.

Oh, and there was a murky growth that seemed to be on my bladder, or in my bladder, or both, and in the ureter, the tube that runs from the left kidney to the bladder. Even now, it’s apparently hard to tell what’s inside the bladder and what’s outside.

This growth, the doctors are sure, is bladder cancer. It’s how to treat it that is up in the air.

At first, they suggested it would not lend itself to removal by surgery and that I’d have to undergo chemotherapy and radiation.

Then, they amended that and figured they might be able to shrink the cancer with chemo and then remove it — along with my useless left kidney and ureter and bladder — with surgery.

But even further study of the CT-Scan leads them to think, because they can’t be sure if the cancer is inside or outside the bladder, that they were right in the first place: chemo and radiation.

I’ll be seeing a urologic oncologist for a second opinion. What he says may influence what treatment we eventually decide on.

In the meantime, no, they haven’t said what stage my cancer is in. No one has even mentioned the word “dying,” let alone given me a calendar for when I may die from this cancer.

As usual, the journalist in me gives me a sort of detached feeling, as if I’m watching this happen to someone else.

I’m going to give this thing a go, I guess. And if you continue to check in with me, I’ll let you know what’s happening as I go.

WOODBURY HEIGHTS — A 25-year-old Sewell man was arrested in the act of burglarizing a house in the 600 block of Clement Avenue at 11:23 a.m. Tuesday.

Police said the resident’s daughter had gone to the house to get a toy for her son when she found the garage door, that is never opened, open.

Ptl. Richard Gambale initially confronted Ryan Zemek allegedly trying to exit through a rear bedroom window, police said. Zemek allegedly refused to obey commands and retreated into the house, said police.

Units from Wenonah, Mantua, Deptford, an off-duty Glassboro sergeant and a Cherry Hill K-9 officer who are neighbors surrounded the house, police said.

Chief George Lindsay, Gambale and several Deptford police officers entered the house and, after an extensive search, found Zemek in the rear of a first floor closet, said police.

Zemek allegedly refused to come out, but was brought out  after a short struggle with Lindsay, Gambale and Deptford police Capt. William Bittner, police said.

Zemek was charged with burglary, theft, resisting arrest, possession of CDS, criminal mischief and trespassing and was lodged in the Salem County Jail in default of $10,000 full-cash bail, after being medically cleared at Inspira Medical Center for injuries he received during the struggle, said police.

All stolen items were recovered.

I’ve been a bit preoccupied recently.

I am not performing due diligence in updating my local news website
because I am physically just not quite up to it. It even has been quite
difficult to pull my thoughts together to write a column.

To those who may have been counting on me for coverage of something important, I apologize. I’m doing my best to recuperate as quickly as possible.

And, so here I sit on a holiday weekend, when one of the presidential
candidates thumbs his nose at me.

Gov. Chris Christie, according to nj.com, has no plans to pay for security protection during his campaign. He’s going to continue doing what he’s been doing all along — he’s going to let us pay for it.

Christie was quoted as saying the New Jersey State Police will continue to provide a protection detail got him wherever he goes, whether he likes it or not.

So he won’t be picking up that expense and paying for it from his campaign funds, as most other candidates seem to be doing.

I wanted to like Christie at some point. Hell, I want to like everyone in the beginning. I never start out disliking anyone. You pretty much have to DO something stupid or dishonest or evil or criminal or hateful or whatever for me to start disliking you. Unfortunately, it usually continues to roll downhill from there.

So, in the beginning I wanted to like Christie. He seemed tough, hard-core, no frills. But soon he demonstrated that what he was, deep-down inside, is a thug, (Oh, darn! I forgot! Are we no longer allowed to use
that word? Sure, it’s a great word. I’ll use it.)

He’s a bully. He likes to throw his weight around, and that is not a weight joke, it’s a politics joke. He wins power, he throws it around. He never uses it with finesse. He uses it as a club.

He shouts down citizens who try to speak at town meetings just because he can. He tries to chase regular guys who challenge him on the boardwalk.

And why can he do these things? Well, because he has stern-faced state troopers in suits who are there to make sure he doesn’t get into physical trouble.

The ones that you and I apparently are going to continue paying for are paying for, even as he traipses all around the country, outside of New Jersey, hoping to become president.

CLAYTON — Gloucester County will hold its 10th Annual BIG Shredding Event on Saturday, June 20 from 8:00 a.m. to 12 Noon sharp at the Gloucester County Government Complex, 1200 N. Delsea Drive, Clayton.

The Shredding event is free and open to residents of Gloucester County.  To ensure all documents are properly disposed of, an industrial size shredder truck will be on site along with the Gloucester County Sheriff’s Department and officials from the office of Consumer Protection.

Paper will be accepted in boxes and bags, staples in paper are fine, but no clips or binder clips are acceptable, neither are books or magazines.

Whew! That sure knocked me for a loop.

I came home from major surgery on Friday.  I had to have a section of my colon removed but, when the surgeon arrived on the scene, he discovered another small section of my small intestine also had to be removed.  Surgery that was supposed total an hour and a half, two hours, took almost five hours to complete.

Of course. the surgeon shared me with my urologist, who was beginning an exhaustive investigation of a growth they had found my bladder.  In the end, they found bladder cancer. Luckily, is appears to not have spread to my colon or to my bones.  

So, we have to determine the cause of action to take next and I have great doctors working on that with me.  I was very lucky at every step.

My primary care physician recommended surgeon John Erbicella, who is just incredible, especially in the way he tells you what has been done or should be done. He explains it clearly, never speaking down to you, and when he leaves, you understand what he has said — well, as long as you’re not completely out of it at the time.  

My regular urologist was unavailable for the surgery, so his associate, Paul Thur, went in as a pinch hitter and I liked him a lot.  

My nurses at Inspira Medical Center at Woodbury were very caring and amazing.  I improved steadily through the week. Almost a week after surgery, while I was in Physical Therapy, and while we all thought  I was about to ace the therapy, I fainted.

I said, “I’m feeling a little wooz—“ and crumpled to the floor from my walker.  

Occupatinal Therapist Helene McMillan was walking with me. She gently put her arm behind my head and took me to the floor, staying with me every second until she was placing me safely, gently. on the floor, her arm still cradling my head.  My Closest Companion was with me. Since the fainting, I’ve sung Helene’s praises whenever and to whomever I can.  “I’m in love with her,” I have said. “And that’s OK with me,” said my Closest Companion.  

Of course, perhaps anyone else at PT that day could have done the same thing for me. I know they would have.

It turned out at every turn I had care that was over and above and you must know how I appreciate that.  

So now, my job is to recuperate so we can move on to the next phase.  What comes next could be daunting. But with all these great people around me, I know I can handle it.

LOGAN TWP. — Police reports as provided by Logan Township police:

6/3:  Metal forms valued at $4,000 were reported stolen sometime overnight from a construction site on the 600 Block of Heron Drive.

6/5:  Police investigated a road rage incident on Center Square Road that involved two Woolwich residents. Both parties were advised of the citizen complaint procedure.

It’s been along time since I spent any time in a hospital and, frankly, I wasn’t looking forward to it now. But there are a couple of things that need fixing and investigating and so today surgeon John Erbicella and urologist Mitchell Kotler will be doing their thing while I nap, so to speak.

They tell me I should expect a stay in the hospital of five to seven days, which I think is quite long in these days of in-and-out surgeries. Still, I’d rather be sure than sorry, as the old folks used to say.

In times past, I’d be surrounded by friends at the hospital.  My friend’s mother, Terry Cogan, used to be a nurse here before her retirement.

The ever-cheerful Rich Bellamente was the public relations honcho here before his retirement. He’d have been down to see me before the anesthesia took effect in the old days.

FRANKLIN TWP. — On June 11, police were dispatched for a five-vehicle accident on Harding Highway at Porchtown Road.

Driving a commercial truck was Patrick Ramirez, 45, of Fairless Hills, Pa. The driver was a silver Volkswagen Jetta was 35-year-old Eric Day of Odenton, Md, said police.

In Day’s vehicle was his wife, Bernadette Day, 27, and their daughter, 4.

The driver of a black BMW was Aman Dalar, 36, of Larale, Md. Carl Rollyson, 67, of Cape May Court House, was driving a blue Prius, police said.

Thomas Dandreamatteo, 63, of Hartly, Del., the driver of a Honda Ridgeline, was killed in the crash, said police.

The results of an investigation by Officer Anthony Rojas led to Ramirez being served with a complaint summons for careless driving.