Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Don't Attack Melania, Blame Trump

Donald J. Trump tweeted, “The media is spending more time doing a forensic analysis of Melania’s speech then the FBI spent on Hillary’s emails.” Actually, not true. Not even in the slightest. 

The millions spent, I mean wasted, investigating this email server and the repetitive partisan Benghazi attack hearings, has gone on for literally years. Four years, to be exact. 

I don't think Melania is to blame for the Trump campaign's mishandling of this trumped up plagiarism scandal. She delivered an amazing speech. I was frankly impressed. It takes so much courage to place yourself in front of people and speak about anything, especially in such divisive times as these. 
+Amazing World

She has been the object of ridicule ever since and with no regard to her humanity, I might add. She simply wasn't served well by those around her, namely those running the Trump campaign. It shouldn't have taken 36 hours to figure this out, and there's no reason for her to be attacked in this way for it either. 

These things happen. It's in how you handle the fallout that matters more. There are catchy phrases we’ve all heard. Moments within a speech that we’ve heard that inspired us to be better human beings. That’s all Melania wanted to do, to inspire people to be better, just like First Lady Michelle Obama did in 2008. 
+Amazing World

What this scandal does expose is the Trump campaign’s capacity to have little regard for the truth, to attack their critics, and to attack any messenger that dare point out the most glaring and obvious flaws within their campaign. 

That should be troubling to anyone who cares about making government work better for us all. 

That should be of concern for anyone who is concerned about politicians who say one thing and do another. 

That should make one pause when all Trump does is demean and trash his opponents while offering no constructive, comprehensive policies to move our country forward together. 

I know I’m focused on moving forward. I’m listening for real plans, for actual policies, and I’m checking them out with recent history to see if these have failed. We have to begin to listen to one another. We’re not all that different. We all want the same basic fundamentals that so many on this beautiful planet can barely dream of having. 

Friday, July 15, 2016

Labeling Terrorists Doesn't Defeat Terrorism

In the wake of yet another terrorist attack, this time in Nice, France during Bastille Day celebrations, the finger-pointing and mischaracterizations are running pretty thick in some political circles. Of course, any chance some people have, they will blame President Obama for every problem nearly anywhere. 

In actuality, there’s not much that can be done to stop someone that gets behind the wheel of a vehicle that is determined to plow through a crowd of innocents in order to kill them. 

Then, they move on to what we must call the people that are responsible for this violence, as if labels actually would magically alter Sun Tzu’s principles of The Art of War

+Wonderful World
Labeling works well when living with someone with dementia to let them know where things are. It doesn't actually accomplish anything to stop violence predicated and supported by an extremist ideology. There are no amount of bombs or invasions that could ever destroy an idea that has its home in hearts and minds. 

Some people might not want to understand why these violent extremists do what they do, but why would making the attempt to figure that out be so quickly demonized? 

Labels don't win wars. Defeating the enemy does. This enemy isn't a nation-state. It's an ideology. Certainly, robbing that ideology of safe harbors is crucial, but understanding how and why it festers and robbing it of the fuels that contributes to its spread and its appeal that give it new lifeblood is even more critical. 

Certainly, as we are the targets of its attacks, being divided and squabbling amongst ourselves makes us less safe as we're not focused on the real enemy.

Let's come together, because we're stronger together. 

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The Leader We Need; Stronger Together

It's a real leader that can acknowledge their missteps and mistakes, to own their role in contributing to the sense of division within America, and saying unequivocally that she will do better. That candidate is Hillary Clinton.

She may not be perfect, but neither are any of us. She at least acknowledges her issues, and works to address them, learn from them.

We are Stronger Together.

In these difficult and often divisive times, we need a leader that not only looks at what's broken in our systems of government, but one that has taken a hard look at her own role in government.

A leader that has comprehensive solutions, policies that are thoughtfully designed, not to drive us apart, but to bring us together and move us as a nation forward into this century.
+Amazing World

You may be angry. 

You may be outraged. 

You have every reason to be.

Give Hillary Clinton a chance. 

Take a good look at the policies she's offering in her campaign for President of the United States. You might be surprised. 

It's not a campaign built on sowing discord. It's a campaign built on coming together, moving us forward.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

What Black Lives Matter Means to Me

Rudy Giuliani is a perfect example of how not to talk about police, race, and gun violence in America. No solutions. Very defensive. Extremely offensive. He obviously takes deep offense at the Black Lives Matter movement, calling it inherently racist. (

It’s actually the job of the police and the community to stop the violence on the streets, not Black Lives Matters protestors. The violence on nation’s streets is very difficult to manage. Giuliani says BLM does nothing about Chicago street violence. That’s actually not true. (
OurStory is an inclusive community centered project organized to show young people their value and self worth by uplifting their voices and experiences by providing them a medium to tell their stories in a meaningful, creative way. OurStory engages the community with Poets, Activists,Organizers, Rappers, Singers and Comedians who exchange stories with residents through artistic expression and political education.  OurStory also intends to foster a culture of sharing, giving and reciprocity by giving away care packages and having black owned businesses donate discounts to community members and in turn promoting these business to residents to patronize regularly. OurStory meets people where there at outside in public spaces, be it the corner, parks, porches or in front of stores, we come to them and then we invite them out to our workshops and events.”
+Wonderful World
He either hasn't bothered to actually sit down and discuss these issues with the actual leaders or supporters of BLM or hasn't listened to anyone who does support this movement. This is similar to the myopic statements by Lt. Governor Dan Patrick’s unfortunate string of comments since the deadly ambush and standoff. 

Let me explain my understanding from my own experiences. 

Saying Black Lives Matter doesn’t negate anyone else’s lives mattering. 

It is simply to focus the attention of the public of not only the loss of life of the black, brown, and poor communities that absolutely and more frequently is the victim of violence across the country, but also the subject of the negative attention these same communities are given by law enforcement and the criminal justice system.
+Wonderful World

The loss of life is not just from cop-related shootings but from citizen-on-citizen crime. It is all connected.

Mostly, the police treat people with respect and dignity. However, the police that do not, the police that fear the people that they are pledged to protect and serve, endanger not only the public but all other police. It is the continued defense of those few members of the police force and criminal justice system that endanger us all, especially cops who have a dangerous job where they have to deal with so many different kinds of people on a daily basis.

If the people who the police come in contact with fear them, both police and citizen alike are placed in a heightened state of danger. That has to change. It can only change with open and honest communication without defensiveness and seething anger from both sides. 

+Wonderful World
The innate and instinctive need for so many people to become defensive or enraged when cops kill citizens or when they hear the words ‘black lives matter’ is something that both sides need to sort through and mediate in order for us to focus on solutions on how to move forward as a nation. That is never easy when there are bodies in coffins and holes in families. 

Otherwise, more people, more cops, more sons, more daughters will senselessly die. No one wants that. No peaceful protestor wants violence. No cop wants to kill an innocent person. 

Can we not at least start there?

Let's at least start talking to each other somewhere instead of yelling at one another.

The Different Perspectives in Cops, Protestors, and Victims
There was much ire when the Decatur, Illinois paper published this photo. It's doing its job as much as cops are doing their jobs and as much as these concerned citizens are doing what they feel they have to in the wake of more senseless killing of citizens by cops. 

If you think you know how it is to be pulled over by cops and you're white, you probably don't have a clue how it is for most black and brown Americans, and that includes black cops in America. 

Just like if you're not a cop you don't know how it is to pull over strangers who you don't know and don't know what's going on in their minds. 

The difference is that it's the cops job to pull over strangers, not to kill them simply because they feel scared. And, it's these protestors' right to go out into the street and protest what they see as unjust, unprovoked killing of their own. 
+Wonderful World

Mistakes happen. And, in most professions, when you make a mistake there's real accountability. With police, when they make a mistake, people can die, including themselves. Both sides can't understand that's the issue here.

Also, if you probably haven't been pulled over in a car in a poor neighborhood or in a car with black people in it. You're lucky to have never witnessed something like that just as most of us are blessed to not have to work the dangerous job of protecting and serving a public that seems oblivious to those dangers. 

Any loss of life is too much. Cops dying. Citizens dying by cops shooting them. Citizens dying by other citizens killing them. It's all too much.

We happen to live in a country where so many love their guns more than they love the lives of cops, citizens, or the rights of those to protest the government, apparently.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Coming Together on Cops, Guns and Violence

Okay, why is it that Philando Castile shouldn't have had a gun, which was legal for him to have been carrying, and none of these gun rights activists are crying foul about him being killed for having that legal gun that he had every right to carry? 

Why is it in every other instance when someone dies by being shot to death that gun rights advocates claim a person needs to be armed? 

Why is it that the laws that were passed with the express purpose of defending oneself are used to gun down innocent people? 

And, why are the people that helped to push those laws’ passage not standing up in response to that young father’s death?

Meanwhile, you have crazed people running around the streets with legal firearms killing cops and somehow those firearms are off limits to discuss  in anyway whatsoever.
+Amazing World

I just don’t get it gun rights folks. And, I don’t get how people who are so quick to defend bad decisions by an extremely few cops can’t understand the anger by the people left with the bloody clothes and the dead bodies from those bad decisions. 

The refusal to even acknowledge there is an allowance for this continued state of little to absolutely no accountability or responsibility by some people within our society is as striking as it is frightening for those who feel and actually are targeted. 

609. That’s how many American citizens have been killed thus far by cops this year. That doesn’t mean all or even most of them were without just cause or without absolute provocation. However, there were many of those deaths that could have been prevented. 
+Amazing World

5 cops were murdered yesterday. 7 wounded. That’s absolutely wrong. There’s no justification for it. Those cops were protecting protestors that were peacefully marching against a system that they feel unjustly targets some people and kills them without any due process or provocation. 

At some point, we have to come together and discuss these issues like adults trying to establish some common ground to move forward instead of pointing the finger, playing the blame game, and trying to outdo each other on who is most right and who is out to get us and destroy the country at the same time.

Gun rights activists don’t want to destroy the country as much as gun control advocates don’t want to destroy the country. Get over yourselves.
+Amazing World

People calling for more accountability when police make bad decisions aren’t against the police as much as police aren’t out to kill the people they’re pledged to protect and serve. 

We have a violence problem. We have a firearms problem. We have mental health issues in this country. We have extremist problems. We have terrorist issues. We have fundamentalists on every side and on every issue. 

+Amazing World
We can’t listen to the most extreme, loudest voices on every hot button issue if we’re ever going to move this country forward for every single one of us. 

We can’t do it alone. We came into this world within someone. We can’t possibly get through this society by tearing each other apart.

If you’re angry, be angry . . . just don’t direct it at someone. None of us are perfect. Our political leaders are representative of that reality. Stop blaming everything that’s wrong in your life on everyone else. Start seeing what you can do about it. 

We can do something about these issues. We can only do it together. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

The Clinton Non-Indictment; The Actual Facts

FBI Director Comey is widely respected by members of both parties. If he says that no charges should be filed, likely he knows something all Hillary haters don't know as he is a dedicated public servant and not someone who has a political axe to grind. 

Was the setup careless? Sure sounds like it in retrospect. However, there was every reason for Hillary Clinton to believe that it wasn’t careless when it was originally set up. That’s why the rules were clarified and strengthened with regard to these specific sort of personal and government email setups during and after she left office.

His comments that he added with this recommendation of ‘no indictment’ were fairly clear about his thoughts on the careless nature with regard to the setup of this private email server. 

As the statute involving the handling of classified material expressly states, intent is key. There's a lack of specificity in the claims against her which is why there's a lack of indictment. If Secretary Clinton had sent classified materials, you can damn well bet she would have been indicted. It's quite clear that there is no such evidence for indictment or conviction. 
+Wonderful World

There's a separate system for classified material, and Comey was quite clear that there were no emails marked classified on the private email server.  Considering none of us know what's in these 'classified' documents, it makes it problematic to know anything or discuss anything about it. Also, it’s impossible to stop someone from emailing you anything, is it not?

If you care to research the technology of the State Department and most of the federal government, it has archaic tech that is way behind the rest of the country. Read what former Secretaries of State have to say about those specific technology issues because these problems really existed prior to Secretary Clinton’s tenure and continue to plague the federal government.

The Clinton email server had been used by a sitting President of the United States, after all. It was set up to protect the information on it, and Director Comey stated unequivocally that there was no actual evidence of hacking on the Clinton server. And, the government servers have been open to attack and have been known to have been breached. Snowden and Wikileaks come to mind as just two obvious examples.
+Wonderful World

No emails were sent or received that were ever marked classified. Obviously, as every single person knows, it is impossible to stop people from sending you stupid shit. 

Sorry, buttressing your anti-Hillary views on this email server setup and all the statements made about it is a moot point. She will not be indicted. Out of over 50,000 emails, there were a handful that had some classified or top secret information within them. Those handful of emails were not marked in that way. If those emails had been marked appropriately they would have never been opened by the Secretary.

+Wonderful World
This non-indictment comes as a huge disappointment to millions of people. They will continue to latch onto every negative kernel within every aspect of every story regarding it. That’s why media outlets continue to cherry-pick FBI Director Comey’s carefully worded statement in order to perpetuate this story as long as possible. It gives the media something to discuss at length without ever having to do actual research or reporting, like Donald Trump’s finances, bad business ethics, and lack of tax returns.  

And, for an email server setup that Hillary Clinton apologized for over a year ago and now has been cleared of for any future indictment regarding, I would hope we could have discussions about the issues and policies to move the country forward instead of someone’s choice about the setup for her email back in 2009.