In Texas, five women have sued the state over its abortion ban. They are suing because they believe that the ban puts their life and the lives of their fetuses at risk. These women are my heroes. They are not just standing up for themselves and their families. They are speaking for all of us who are affected by arbitrary legislation that has more to do with the beliefs of a few than reality.
And finally, one of the major headlines of the last seven days is the collapse of the Silicon Valley Bank. The most disconcerting offshoots of the story are the accusations that “wokeness” was the cause of the bank’s downfall. Instead of zeroing in on the real problems that were the cause, the right once again chooses to pick the answer that suits them.
Two major points have been part of the discourse around the bank. The first is the repeal of the Dodd-Frank Act by the former guy. Like the accident in East Palestine, all of this might have been prevented had the regulations remained as is. The second is the irony that the organization received financial assistance from the federal government. However, when they wanted the government to be hands-off, they got what they wanted. They can’t have it both ways. Either there are structures in place to head off a collapse or it is the wild wild west.
One of the ways a country’s values can be judged is the legislation.
In Tennessee, a new law may allow marriage clerks to deny licenses based on that person’s beliefs. In short, a public servant (whose salary comes from our tax dollars), can tell a tax-paying citizen that they have no right to marry. If this person was a clergy of a specific faith and was using that as a context, their reasons are understandable (even if one disagrees with that decision). But a clergyperson’s paycheck comes from their congregation and not from the public.
Meanwhile, Walgreens has decided to not sell the abortion pill in twenty states. This is nothing more than a corporation bowing to the wishes of a minority. Granted, the right could accuse the left of the same thing. However, when it comes to medical care (which is what abortion is), that’s another story.
And finally in Arkansas, comes a double whammy from Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders (former mouthpiece from the previous administration). The Youth Hiring Act of 2023 allows children under 16 to work without a permit. We know how this is going to go. Those forced to go to work (instead of school) are poor, immigrants, and people of color. These jobs (as in the past), will likely be dangerous, low-paying, and life-altering.
She also signed a bill that allows anyone who received gender-affirming care as a minor to sue a medical practitioner once they turn 18. Though it will not be enforced until this summer, the statute of limitations is good until that individual turns 33. This is a tactic that Republicans often use. By deputizing the person on the street, they keep their hands clean.
Just another day in America and another reason to vote them all out.
Am I the only one who is tired of the Republican‘s endless shtick? They seem to be unaware or unconcerned that the country is going down the drain.
In Florida, State Senator Jason Brodeur proposed a bill that would require bloggers who publish political pieces to register with the state. Though it was initially tied to Governor Ron DeSantis, that was quickly refuted. While it is heartening that the Governor was not behind it, this denial of freedom of speech is very concerning and a warning sign that should not be ignored.
Also in the sunshine state, DeSantis was at a book signing (and keeping his 2024 Presidential hopes alive). He was confronted by supporters of the former guy. Instead of ignoring them and focusing on the attendees, he had the protestors forced out of the store. While security escorted them out, they cried for freedom of speech. Though DeSantis has yet to formalize his campaign, this speaks to the division on the right. It also reveals that the Governor is not as much of a badass as he claims he is.
And finally, in Texas, Crystal Mason was doing her civic duty by voting in the 2016 Presidential election. Instead of doing her business and walking out, she was accused of illegally casting a provisional ballot and was sentenced to five years in prison. At the time, she was on supervised release for a previous conviction. The law in Texas bars convicted felons from voting if their sentence has not been completed.
According to her legal team, she was unaware that her sentence had not reached its end. What strikes me is that this sentence goes well beyond what it should have been. It reeks of racism and denies this woman her right as a citizen. Though the conviction has been overturned, the message is clear. Because she is a woman of color, her voice and vote is not wanted or needed.
Adding insult to injury, teachers in the state are being forced to make a choice that no educator should be forced into. They can either remove books from their shelf/curriculum that have been labeled as “woke”. If they choose to ignore the law, they face a possible jail sentence of five years. And then, there is the proposed legislation to allow anyone to buy a gun without requiring permits.
I don’t know about you, but DeSantis’s priorities are seriously screwed up.
We all know that politicians tend to fib every now and then. It has unfortunately become an expected part of the job. But to lie about your entire biography is another story entirely.
In the last week or so, a number of media outlets revealed that Republican Congressmen elect George Santoslied about who he was as a person and a candidate. Let’s look at some of the untruths he claimed as fact.
He said that he attended both NYU and Baruch College in New York City. Neither school has any record of him as a student.
He was employed by two major Wall Street firms. Again, there are no records of him as an employee.
His mother survived 9/11 and died a few years later. A little digging revealed that she died in 2016.
His mother was the daughter of Jewish Holocaust survivors from Ukraine. After extensive research, no documentation has been found to support these claims. This is both an insult to survivor and their families, and spits on the graves of the millions who were murdered. It also opens the door to Holocaust denial.
Four members of his staff were murdered in the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando. Santos has yet to disclose details about these supposed employees or the company they all worked for.
During the campaign, he often spoke about being gay and receiving a warm reception from the party. The reality is that he was married to a woman until September 2019. Given the right’s outright discrimination against LGBTQ Americans, this statement is doubly dishonest.
In another world in which Americans were not so politically divided, I would argue that the voters should decide if they want him to represent them. Traditionally, that area (which is divided between Eastern Queens and part of Long Island) is heavily Democratic. Though I personally have no skin in this game, I think he should he should resign. I would not want someone speaking for me whose entire identity has been revealed to be a complete falsehood.
What makes me angry is that by pretending to be a double minority and a survivor by extension of 9/11, he is devaluing the experiences of everyone who legitimately goes by those identifiers. In the private sector, if it is discovered that your resume is not truthful, you are either fired or taken out of the running for the job. I don’t get how this rule does not apply to the political sector.
At this point, we cannot predict how the party and his constituents will react. Whatever that decision is, it will speak volumes about this nation, her beliefs, and her values.
P.S. Santos now states that he “embellished” his biography. An embellishment is stating that your G.PA. was 4.0 instead of 3.8. A two-point difference on one G.P.A. is not going to potentially change the world. But an elected official who fabricated his entire resume does have the potential to change the world.
The expectation of the press (and the news in general) is that the information provided is not one-sided. However, given the state of American politics, we have to be one-sided. We have to remember that democracy is a choice and unless we keep fighting for it, it will die.
Last Sunday, former Vice President Mike Pence was interviewed on Meet the Press. From the outside, the purpose of the interview was to talk about his new book (which will be the first and only mention on this blog) and to take a deeper dive into his perspective on the last few years.
While I understand that concept logically, I cannot understand why a supposedly “moderate” program would give this man the spotlight. Despite the threat to his life on January 6th and the obvious thread that our nation is hanging by, he continues to drink the Republican cool-aid.
Two weeks ago, the thread was made just a little stronger by the midterm results. That does not mean that we are out of the woods. Far from it. Until we excise this right-wing, fascist, and archaic ideal from our collective system, we will never be free from it.
One of the aspects of governing that drives me up a wall is the hypocritical belief that politicians can get away with certain behavior while the rest of us cannot.
Herschel Walker is the Republican Senate nominee from Georgia. For months, he has been towing the party line of being against abortion. Last week, it was revealed that back in 2009, he paid a former girlfriend to end her pregnancy. Walker also made a similar request to this same woman two years later. She decided against the procedure.
What bothers me (beyond my fear of what he may or may not do should he win the election) is talking out of both sides of his mouth. If he had admitted to the truth and stated that his views had changed since then, that would be one thing. But he continues to say one thing and do another. Anyone who follows American politics these days knows that this is par for the course from the right.
In short, these men (and some women) are all for a partial and/or total abortion ban. That is until a female in their life becomes pregnant and for any number of reasons, it cannot be continued. Then, they are all for it.
They can’t have it both ways. It is either against the law or up to the woman/pregnant person, their doctor, their partner (if they have one), and their creator (if this person has a specific religious belief).
One of the earliest lessons we are taught when we are young is right vs. wrong. That does mean, that later on in life, we adhere to those lessons.
Tim Miller is a former Republican operative and strategist. For years, he proudly towed the party line and spread what he believed to be the truth. Then he came out and he was forced to reckon with his past decisions.
His story is told in the new political memoirWhy We Did It: A Travelogue from the Republican Road to Hell. Published in June, Miller is upfront and honest about the half-truths, outright lies, and the games they were played by himself and his colleagues at the time. He also confronts the fact that he is a gay man and was working in a world that was and still is openly homophobic.
It reminds me of Michael Cohen‘s memoir. At the time, both Cohen and Miller believed that they were doing the right thing. It is only with time did they realize that the decisions they were making were at least morally, speaking, not on the up and up.
What I like about this book is that he does not end it with suggestions on how to bring the nation back to some sort of pre-2016 “normality”. In doing so, he is challenging the readers to take a look at themselves and figure out what they can do to restore our democracy and its former reputation.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Why We Did It: A Travelogue from the Republican Road to Hell is available wherever books are sold.
When it comes to our veterans, the generally accepted response is to shake their hands and verbally thank them for putting their lives on the line. While that is well and good, we need to ensure that they have access to medical care that is unique to their experience.
Last week, many Republicans voted against the PACT act. The purpose of this legislation is to ensure that those who were exposed to burn pits can see a doctor when dealing with the adverse side effects of this exposure. Ironically, they voted for the bill last month.
Why does it take a famous comedian to shine the spotlight on what should be an obvious agreement? This is not a political issue that depends on one’s belief system. This bill and the money that is being put aside is for our fellow Americans who put their lives, their families, and their futures on hold to protect this nation and its values.
And how do we thank them for their service? Not by providing free treatment when they are living with cancer or another fatal disease? We tell them good night, good luck, and shove them out the figurative door. Let them die, let their families grieve, and deal with the multiple after-effects of that loss.
Like many men of their generation, both my grandfathers fought in World War II. When they came home, they were not kicked to the curb by the politicians of the era. They had the GI Bill. That gave them access to education, home ownership, etc. Where is the conscious of some of those in power today? I’d like to think that deep down, they have one. But I have yet to see it.
This was just another round of political “top that”. It’s not about serving the people, it is about their want to stay in power. Just another reason to vote them all out in November.
Barring any major problems or scandals, I will be voting for her in the general election in the fall. Her goal (unlike other politicians who shall remain nameless in this post) is to help and protect the citizens of this state. Her signature on recent gun control and reproductive rights legislation tells me everything I need to know about her values. She also, unlike her predecessor, has the temperament to work with the voters and legislators at every level of government.
Back in 2016, when Hillary Clinton lost to you know who in the Presidential election, I (along with millions of other Americans) was devastated. Instead of moving this country forward, we were torpedoed back into an era that many believed were in the past.
It has become clear that she was right. We were warned but refused to listen. Now we are on the verge of losing everything we hold dear because many of us believed the lies of you know who and his minions. If only we had listened…..
P.S.: Who else thinks that Cassidy Hutchinson is a hero? She will go down in history as a woman who stood up for democracy and the rule of law.
P.P.S: A ten-year-old girl was raped in Ohio. The result of the rape was a pregnancy. Because she was a hair past the deadline in which she could get an abortion in her state, she had to travel out of state to end the pregnancy. This is exactly why Roe v. Wade needs to be codified as a nationally enforced law. No one with a uterus should be forced to carry their rapist’s child. Especially a child.
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