I’ve written lots of words, and read even more, about the ongoing Trail of Tears controversy. I’m going to try to make this the last blog I write on the subject and the topic is how to move it forward, how to help make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Based on what I’ve read in the local newspapers the school’s path forward is to take a couple of class periods and teach the story of the forceful removal of Indians during the early 1800s. This was ordered by president Andrew Jackson, in defiance of a Supreme Court order, and resulted in the tragic deaths of thousands of Eastern Native-Americans.
Additionally the cheerleaders involved met with Hillsboro’s cheerleaders where an apology was offered.
Continue reading The Trail Forward
This came out of a living room conversation last week. It’s an old joke that remains funny to this day.
There’s a revival meeting going on at a local Pentecostal church and the evangelists is at the pulpit encouraging everyone to come forward and confess to their sins. His message is nothing is too bad in the eyes of the Lord and there is no limit to what the Lord will forgive.
After many of people had confessed and been forgiven an old man in the back raises his hand and is encouraged to confess to his sin. The man begins telling a story about how he’d been out fishing and in the spur of the moment decided to have sex with a nearby goat.
The man reported every last detail of the incident expecting the preacher and the congregation to praise him and openly welcome him into the fold.
Instead, the minister sternly and scornfully looked down at the man and said, “Damn brother, I don’t think I’d a told that!”
Every time something new comes out about Trump’s sexual behaviors I expect the public to say, “Damn Donald, I don’t think you should have done that!”
Instead we typically get silence or some reason to absolve him of his behavior. I’ve never witnessed this sort of response towards a person seeking the highest office in the land.
I gotta wonder if Trump could screw the goat and unlike the old man in the story, the minister would tell the congregation pat him on the back, shake his tiny hand, and to give him a big ole’ atta-boy!
I’m going to wade into waters that some of you won’t find sweet enough. For a long time it’s been generally accepted that conservatives are not as empathetic as liberals. You won’t find this carved on any of the stones Moses brought down from the mountain but it is a generally accepted truth.
Certainly you’re aware that conservatives like to call liberals, bleeding hearts or crybabies. I once heard a conservative comic say that, “When a man is down the best way to get him up is to kick him.” When a liberal takes exception to that thought they are looked down on as being a bunch of gullible mamby-pambies. Many believe reaching out and offering the hand of government weakens individual self determination and makes people wards of government and not self-sufficient individuals.
Continue reading The Need for More Empathy
I still haven’t figured out what to think about Trump supporters. Michael Steele is black, a former chairman of the Republican National Committee, and one time lieutenant governor of Maryland. He has announced that he will not be voting for Trump because of the candidate’s appeal to racists. He told a magazine that Trump, “captured that racist underbelly, that frustration, that angry underbelly of American life…” and gave it voice.”
Even though many Trump supporters deny that he has made any racist and misogynist statements the reality is, oh yes he has and he has done so long and strong enough to earn the endorsement and support of most of the white supremacist in America. He’s damned near the poster child for the KKK and American neo Nazis.
Continue reading The Dilemmas of Mike & Larry
ANTI-SEMITIC: “The Anti-Defamation League identified 2.6 million tweets containing anti-Semitic language, 19,253 of which were sent to journalists. More than two-thirds of the tweets directed at journalists came from 1,600 Twitter accounts.”
During one of his campaigns Barrack Obama said that many people in America, when times are hard, cling to their guns and Bibles. He caught a lot of hell for that but to me he wasn’t wrong.
The question is often heard these days, “In spite of all the reality why are people still supporting Trump?” Well, the answer could be as simple as guns and the Bible.
A person I know recently attended a gathering of mostly older, conservative, rural people. On several occasions the subject of religion came up and it was obvious that these folks were pretty fundamental in their beliefs. Thoughts similar to Michelle Bachmann’s claim that God had raised up Trump to be president could be heard. When politics was the topic the consensus of thought was that Trump was their candidate for no other reason than they weren’t voting for Hillary.
Continue reading Truth, Facts, & Reason Stay Off the Grass
I saw this meme on Facebook and just had to share it. Untold millions of taxpayer dollars have been wasted on drug testing “welfare” recipients with no evidence that welfare recipients are druggies.
With that in mind this, to me, is what Jesus would sound like if he were a right-wing Republican.
I didn’t see this fellow speak at the DNC but later came across a YouTube video of what I have to believe was a major moment at the gathering. Every word the Rev. William Barber, II said is a word every American needs to hear and absorb. He spoke to the truth and he spoke for all of us, regardless of race, creed, or national identity. He spoke as a human addressing all other humans. For this reason I’m posting the video of his moment of fame and hope we all take it to “heart!”
FACTOID: Polls show that in today’s America over 40% believe humans and dinosaurs inhabited the planet at the same time. Educationally it’s like we’re in a race to return to the dark ages.
I saw this posted in an Internet meme but wasn’t sure it was true. So I did a Google search and found this quote on Cory Booker’s own Facebook page as well as in an article in the New York Times. As far as I’m concerned the message applies to people of all faiths and people of no faith.
“Before you speak to me about your religion, first show it to me in how you treat other people; before you tell me how much you love your God, show me in how much you love all His children; before you preach to me of your passion for your faith, teach me about it through your compassion for your neighbors. In the end, I’m not as interested in what you have to tell or sell as in how you choose to live and give.” Cory Booker, D-US Senate from New Jersey
I’d suggest we all try this shoe on and make sure it fits. If it doesn’t you need to get you a shoe stretcher.
Yesterday Kentucky Clerk of Courts, Kim Davis, said she wouldn’t resign because she would no longer have a voice. Well Kim, to the perk of having a voice doesn’t come with being a tax paid public employee. The $80,000 a year you are paid is for doing your job and obeying the laws of the land and the orders of the courts. If you want a voice go buy yourself a small 500 watt radio station in Goober’s Knob, KY. Get yourself a Blogger account and ramble on. Or dumpster dive for an old box to stand on while making speeches in front of the Rowan County Courthouse. The one you just resigned from.
Continue reading Random thoughts about yesterday
Today’s news cycle is filled with arguments for and against Ben Carson’s comments about Muslims not being qualified for the presidency. On the one hand Carson recognizes the Constitutional demand that religion not be a qualifier for political office. But, at the same time he plainly stated that he wouldn’t support a Muslim in politics unless they denounced their faith. To me that is precisely what a religious qualifier is.
In this morning’s headlines can be found conservative Republican Steve King of Iowa defending Carson and insisting that no Muslim can swear allegiance to the Constitution because it conflicts with Sharia (Islāmic) Law.
Sharia Law is one of those things many have heard of but rarely know much about it. Nevertheless it has become one of the far-rights favorite boogie men. It’s to politics and religion what Ebola is to longevity of life.
Continue reading You say Sharia, I say Smaria!
The seemingly never-ending saga of Kim Davis hasn’t dropped out of the news cycle yet. Like so many people I’m getting tired of hearing about it. But, unlike lots of people, as a former US Government teacher, I see it as a teachable moment and if I were still in the classroom we’d be all over this one as a means of displaying how the Constitution works.
One of the best teachable moments in my career was the controversy regarding the showing of John Mapplethorpe’s photographs in a Cincinnati art museum. It was a great opportunity to talk about the issue of free speech how the courts had interpreted it over the decades. Basically the courts have said that not all speech is protected but offensive speech is. When some tried to prevent the Westboro Baptist Church from spewing their insults about dead American service persons the Supreme Court ruled that even though their actions were offensive we the people aren’t protected from being offended.
Continue reading Civics 101, a brief review
John Oliver recently did an investigative report on the lack of financial transparency that exist with religion in America. The 1st Amendment religious freedom protections have allowed religious organizations a number of exemptions from both reporting income and how that income is used. For many years there have been those who feel churches should not be exempted from disclosure and taxes. Watch Oliver’s presentation and if you wish, take part in the simple poll that follows. NOTE: Click HERE to see the followup article regarding what happened during the week following Oliver’s creation of his own church, Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption.
Just when you think the situation in the Middle East can’t get worse it gets worse. As simple as I can make it there are too many religions, too many religious sects, too many tribes, too many extremists, and too much oil which has resulted in too much foreign involvement.
If the world was still operating on a coal based energy supply most people wouldn’t know what or where the Middle East is. But since we’re an oil based economy most people still don’t know what or where the Middle East is. But people who are interested in making huge sums of money do know and have known for decades and have used every means possible to gain and hold on to an advantage.
The United States is not alone in manipulating geopolitics in that region for its own advantage. But since World War II it has become a major player and bears much of the blame for the Arab world being what it is today.
Continue reading A Middle East Cluster F*@K