For some New York City residents of a certain age, their memories of the “bad old days” in the 1980’s are probably ones that they would prefer to forget.
Back then, I was a sheltered child, protected from the truth of the city. But now, as an adult, I understand why these memories are kept in the mental filling cabinet.
Recently, some have been saying that NYC is starting to return to the “bad old days”. Though Mayor Bill de Blasioinsists that we will not be back sliding into the past, the metrics state otherwise. Over the 4th of July holiday weekend alone, forty people were shot. Three of them were killed.
Before some of you jump on me, I need you hear me when I say that I am all for bail reform and police reform. If the city and the country is to move forward, we must address both ASAP. The last thing thing anyone wants is another Eric Garner or George Floyd case splashed across the headlines.
But I feel like there has to be a balance. The police and the justice system still need to be able to do their jobs.
I don’t claim to be an expert on these very touchy topics. I’m not and will make such a statement. But I am a proud NYC resident who cringes at the thought of my beloved city going back to an era which no one wants to revisit.
I don’t know what it will take to prevent us from rebooting the “bad old days” but with a 2020 twist. But I do know that something has to be done.
I wish today was an ordinary 4th of July. But as we all know, 2020 is not an ordinary year.
If nothing else, the protests following the murder of George Floyd and the issues created by Covid-19 has revealed the cracks in American society. If none of this was happening, it would be easy to ignore them. But one cannot ignore long standing issues if they are in your face 24/7.
We are at a precipice. We can either put our rose colored glasses on or we can finally start the process of becoming the nation that we could be. This is not the first time we have been at a crossroads. We can move forward as country. We can heal and accept that collectively, we have made mistakes. We only need to step up to the plate and learn from the past.
Wherever you are and whatever you are doing this weekend, have a happy and safe Independence Day.
The first step in solving a problem is admitting that there is one to begin with. But that is sometimes easier said than done.
The United States has had a problem called racism for 400 years. Politically and culturally, we have done some work to write the wrongs of the past. But that work is only a drop in the bucket compared to what has yet to be done.
It is nearly a month since George Floyd was murdered. Since then, Americans have protested his unnecessary death and the structural racism that is part of this country’s DNA.
Across the nation, there have been calls to remove statues and rename buildings that memorialize those who were responsible for the enslavement and subjugation of Americans of color. In my neck of the woods (aka New York City), the Teddy Roosevelt statue that greets visitors to the American Museum of Natural History will soon be non-existent.
Some say that this is going too far. There are other ways to redeem our past other than tearing down these monuments to history. If we take down statues of men like Robert E. Lee, we must take down statues of our Founding Fathers, who also owned slaves.
As Ticked Off Vic says, there is a difference between Robert E. Lee and our Founding Fathers. While these were men of their time, there is a marked difference between their actions. The fact is statues and images speak volumes in ways that words cannot touch. If we are to move forward as a country, we must face up to our past and take some of these statues down. If we don’t, we will never be able to move forward as a nation.
America is a country built on double standards. The basis of our cultural and legal ideals comes from need to be free as a person and a citizen. But America is also a country built on the backs of African-Americans. For most of our history, they have been used, degraded, de-humanized and denied the most basic of rights.
In the wake of the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and many others, the country has become mobilized to right the wrongs of the past.
Today is Juneteenth. I have to admit that up until recently, I had not heard of this day. Now that I know about it, I wish that it had part of the curriculum when I was in school.
Across the political and cultural spectrum, there have been calls to make Juneteenth a national holiday. In my home state of New York, it has been declared a state holiday.
After 400 years of servitude, it is about time we gave the African-American community their due. It’s time to demolish the economic, political, and social structures that have forced Americans of color into a permanent underclass. It’s time to live up to the ideals that the United States is built upon.
Only then will we no longer live with a double standard.
Even in the darkest of times, there will always be that small light in the distance. As difficult it reach it as it may seem, we must always be fighting to get to that light.
It is no secret that our nation has been in turmoil for the past few months due to the one two punch of Covid-19 and the murder of George Floyd. But even with all that, there is still something to smile about.
Yesterday, the Supreme Court upheld one of our nation’s highest ideals by making discrimination against the LGBTQ community in the workplace illegal. In a move that surprised many, two of more conservative judges (one of whom was appointed by you know who) stood with their liberal colleagues in favor of the ruling.
This gives me hope. We can live up to the ideals of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We can ensure equal rights for all. We can end the discriminatory practices that have been the unfortunate backbone of our nation for far too long.
It just takes time, work, and putting one’s fears aside to fight for a greater cause.
I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Pride month.
I think it is pretty safe to say that in the nearly three weeks since George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis, the world has changed. Across the globe, millions are making their voices heard. George Floyd was one man, but he has come to stand for those who have been killed by hate.
Yesterday would have been Anne Frank‘s 91st birthday. Her diary has been ready by millions of readers over the last 70ish years. Like George Floyd, she has become a symbol of a life cute short by hate.
I keep thinking that if the world had collectively protested in the 1930’s as they do now, would the Holocaust have happened? How many might have survived? Unfortunately, this question can never be answered.
I wish that we lived in a world in which our rights were immediately given to us at birth. I wish that we were not categorized and then based on that category, denied or approved for where we may end up in life. But that is the world we live in. But until that day in which that happens, we must continue to stand up and fight for those rights.
“Buffalo protester shoved by Police could be an ANTIFA provocateur. 75 year old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to black out the equipment. @OANN I watched, he fell harder than was pushed. Was aiming scanner. Could be a set up?”
In a time of crisis, we need our political leaders to use a cool head and think clearly. We don’t need a hot-headed, salesman of a President who prefers conspiracies and half-truths. But that is what we have had for the last three years.
I don’t what it will take to get this man out of office in November. But whatever we do, he MUST not have a second term.
When George Floyd was murdered two weeks ago, it was more than the taking of a life. His death is sadly the personification of everything the things that humanity needs to fix.
That being said, there is a difference between protesting injustice and taking advantage to promote one’s personal crusade.
The most recent Palestinian lie is to link their “cause” to George Floyd and the protests that have erupted around the world in the last two weeks.
If there was a legit issue, that would be one thing. Not that everything the IDF or the Israeli government does is perfect. But they have at least attempted to live in peace with their neighbors. I cannot say the same for the Palestinians.
What happened to George Floyd, I would not wish on anyone. I would also not wish for his memory to be co-opted for a deliberately created falsehood.
Leadership is proven and/or defined during times of crisis. How a specific leader rises or falls to the challenge in front of them speaks volumes.
Between Covid-19 and the nationwide protests over the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, America is at a crossroads. We should have a President who is up to the task of leading us through what can only be defined as an extremely very difficult time. Instead, we have a President who hides in a proverbial bunker, tweets incessantly and uses the Police (like he does everything) for personal gain.
This morning, Randy Rainbow released his latest video. It is entitled THE BUNKER BOY – A Randy Rainbow Song Parody.
For the last three years, we have dealt with this President’s tantrums, lies, and inability to do the job Americans hired him to do. It’s time to send a clear message that we have had enough of his antics. We need a real President, not one who is pretending to be one.
For over 200 years, Americans have held dear to the right of assembly and the right of free speech. That being said, there is a marked difference between peaceful protest and destruction of property.
Across the country, Americans march in solidarity against the murder of George Floyd. While the majority of them are only seeking to have their voices heard, some are taking advantage and looting businesses along the way.
As I said in a previous post, I do not have the experience of a person of color in America and I will not speak of what I do not know of. I am also painfully aware that my skin color and my class have automatically opened doors that are closed the others.
However, I don’t understand what looting stores have to do with the cause of racial equality. It feels like the people who are looting are taking advantage of the situation for their own personal gain. It is also akin to pouring salt into the wound of business owners who were forced to close because of Covid-19 and have only begun to re-open their stores.
I wish that we lived in a country in which the laws and actions matched the ideals of our founders. But we don’t live in that country and because we don’t, protest is required for change. It just be a lot easier if looting was not part of the bargain.