Posted in Politics, LGBTQ

My Mama Always Told Me . . .

that “you’re known by the  company you keep.” My Dad used to say, “if you lie down with dogs, you’ll get fleas.”

While both are sort of old fashioned and cliché, they unfortunately apply to President Trump.

And that’s why it is apparent, to me at least, that President Trump is a White Supremacist.

It seems that almost everyone is tippy-toeing around, pretending that President Trump is really a nice guy, inside. Some people, usually Republicans, casually pass off his behavior say it’s because he’s “new to politics,” “still learning,” “has to adjust.”

That’s a bunch of crap, as my Dad would also say, on occasion. The real reason for his behavior is because he’s a psychopathic White Supremacist.

There, I wrote it, again. And if anyone wanted, I’d say it, out loud.

He would, of course, deny it.

But who does he hang out with? White Supremacists. Who are his closest advisors? White Supremacists.

And his behavior confirms it. The most obvious are:
✦ He initiated and promoted the birther controversy regarding former President              Obama’s birth place. There was no factual basis for his claim, but his repetition of the   allegation prompted many people, primarily racists and White Supremacists to believe it.
✦ During his campaign, he retweeted many White Supremacist’s anti-Semitic images.
✦ He appointed Steve Bannon, a known White Supremacist, as his chief advisor.
✦ As a candidate, as President Elect and now as President, he quotes and appears to believe White Supremacist versions of the news and agrees with the opinions of White Supremacist writers and broadcasters.
✦ He attempted to ban Muslims, some of whom are people of color, from entering the country.
✦ He now accuses former President Obama of wiretapping his phones at the Trump Tower. And, as with the birther controversy, he has no proof to support his claim.
Fact is, White Supremacists and racists just can’t stand the fact that a Black man became President, and actually, in spite of their efforts, did a really good job.
While most of Trump’s supporters are not White Supremacists, many are racist. Trump has tapped into that prejudice and has used it to promote himself into a position of power — power, if he is allowed to use it by Congress, that will strip people of color, gays, lesbians, transgender and non-right wing fundamentalist Christians, of basic human rights.
It won’t happen all at once. But it has already begun. So far, the majority of the American people, not Congress, is to a degree, thwarting those attempts.
In our system of government, Congress is charged with controlling Presidential overreach. However, few have dared to challenge him. There are a variety of reasons for this. One is, they want to take advantage of the fact that there is a President who is unlikely to veto their legislation. They have power. They like it.

For Republican members of Congress to continue giving excuses for the President’s behavior, tweets and unfounded claims, indicates they are either incredibly stupid (which they aren’t), agree with his White Supremacist views (which most don’t), have a personal agenda they hope to promote  or are afraid of retaliation when they come up for re-election.  Nowhere are the American people a consideration.

Thus it is obvious that all of us ordinary people, of all political parties, need to continue to work together to uphold the Constitution to preserve everyone’s “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

And we do that by recognizing we are dealing with a White Supremacist.

Remind the Senators and Representatives we don’t want them getting fleas.

Flea ridden Congressional dogs sure won’t get my vote.

 

Posted in Health Care, Politics

Rising Rural Resistance

 

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At last, rural folks are discovering they too can protest, can make their voices heard, just like the big cities on the coasts. While there may not be thousands of people as in Los Angeles or New York City, it has meaning.

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On Saturday, February 25, over 60 people voiced concerns for the fate of their health care, demonstrating in front of the Courthouse in Camdenton, Missouri, population 3,718.

“Why is this important?” you might ask.

First, you need to know that Camdenton is the County Seat of Camden County where all the elected County officials are Republicans who ran unopposed; that Camden County is split between two Congressional Districts, both with Republican Representatives in the U.S. House. Yet still, in this seemingly Republican bulwark, over 60 people showed up.

Tired of being bullied, they are concerned about their healthcare and the healthcare of their children, grandchildren and extended family. Families are important around here.

So they braved the cold front, bundled up and carried their handmade signs. New friends were made, old friendships renewed. All with a common purpose, health care, believing no one should die because of a lack of money.

Rather simple, really.

It’s a matter of life and death.

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Posted in Politics

You Lost, Now What

So you lost. You are devastated. Depressed. Okay. Now what.

Some people stomp out of the house, fire up the tractor and brush hog. Others pull up their boots and clean the horse stalls. And then there are some who scrub with a vengeance. Whatever the physical activity, it feels a hell of a lot better than sulking. At least something useful gets done. Something tangible. Something worth a photo on Facebook.

But then what. It’s a done deal. You lost. Can’t change it. You lost. Now what.

Will you “just get over it?” No. Will you “give it up.” Hope not. For what did you actually lose. Did you lose the war for compassion, social justice, for people? No. You lost a skirmish. The battles continue. Wars, especially against those who would be dictators, are never won quickly. Adult bullies have honed their skills since childhood. They make groups fearful of what they might do. Some people cower, afraid to disagree with the bully. Feeling powerless, they try to disappear into the background so as not to be noticed. Other try to please, do what is wanted to avoid the wrath, hoping they will be given at least portion of the power for their good behavior.

And then there are the others. The ones who continue the fight for “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” They get off the tractor, clean off their boots, throw down the scrubber and resume the fight.

They call, write, post, sign, demonstrate, plan, donate, photograph . . .

They persist to resist – that’s what.

Posted in Politics

Whoops

U.S President Trump is finally bringing people together. It is almost certain he didn’t really mean to do it. It just sort of happened, inadvertently, a by-product of his egotistical and bullying personality.
Thanks to his need to receive accolades from his constituency, he signed the Immigration Executive Order.
If he hadn’t done that, the Republicans and Democrats in Congress would have continued to have little in common. As it is, it galvanized some Republicans to step up, agreeing with Democrats and condemning the EO. Equally important, the Trump voters and the non-Trump voters down on the farm are trying to figure out, together, what to do about him.
The difficulty, among his voters, is reconciling his behavior and actions with their Christian faith and values. Their faith has led them to vote for the people who say they are “Pro Life.” Period. That’s it, the overriding criteria for every elected office. Other factors are considered minor.
Only this time, the other factors are not minor. They are major, not only going against Christian values, but the values of every other living religion of this world.
So, down on the farm, some folks are resuming friendships, working together. There will always be those who are as bigoted as Trump. But the overwhelming majority are good people who made a mistake. It is important to forgive those people and work together against the white supremacists and bullies.

Posted in LGBTQ

About Numbers

There is great truth in the old saying “strength in numbers.” Thanks to many factors, finally, the fight for LGBT civil rights has reached the Midwest. Attention has shifted from the East and West Coasts to the Heartland.

In the past, many GLBT people moved from wherever they were to one of the more liberal Coast areas. Conversely, many of the right-wing homophobic conservatives moved to somewhere in the Midwest, where it was easier to impose their particular religious beliefs, which includes discrimination against LGBT people.

But thanks to the growing number of vocal LGBT people and their non-gay friends and relatives, homophobes are finally being confronted. Three major Missouri cities currently have non-discrimination laws which include sexual orientation, Columbia, Kansas City and St. Louis. Two also include gender identity, Columbia and Kansas City. Meanwhile, efforts to include orientation and gender identity continue in Springfield.

Most parents want the best for their children. Once they understand that a non-discrimination law protects their gay or lesbian child, they can pressure their legislators or join groups that provide pressure. It is one of the perks of being out to parents who still talk to you.

If only one family member of each gay person joined in the fight, that doubles the numbers. Add in perhaps another parent, aunts, uncles and so forth, the numbers can soar. Thankfully, here in Missouri there is an increased presence of Parents Families, Friends and Allies of Lesbians and Gays (P-FLAG) which was established as a parent support group in the early 1970s. You can find out more about the national organization at http://community.pflag.org/Page.aspx?pid=194&srcid=-2 . There is also a section showing where chapters are located through out the country and Missouri.

A tough battle is ahead. There will be lies and terrible words from those who hate.

But with the help of PFLAG and other organizations, we will persist.

We will win.

Posted in LGBTQ

Bring It On

Several euphemisms come to mind when contemplating whether the legislation permitting discrimination against Lesbians and Gays will ultimately succeed. One involves a snow-ball. And most of the people, of reasonable intelligence, making comments on Facebook and other places, ridicule and laugh at the stupidity of even trying to get such a law to stand. Yet, state after state tries to pass or enforce legislation legalizing discrimination on the basis of personal religious beliefs. All have failed at one point or another.

Recently, Missouri joined the ranks of the likes of Arizona, Kentucky, Texas and others.

The question then is, “Why?” Why are they proposing those laws if it is so hopeless. Do they truly believe they can legislate their concept of morality? Yes, if they can get away with it.  Do they want to boost the economy by spending lots of taxpayer money on the process and possible legal battles? Not really but they will spend the people’s money. Or are they all just a bunch of homophobic idiots.

Homophobic, perhaps. Idiots, no.

The real reason: re-election. Some businesses and individuals want to discriminate and are willing to contribute big money to politicians who will take their side. Plus, many legislators are indeed  homophobic. They take on the role of “Savior,” protecting the God-fearing people from the Gay and Lesbian hoards. Of course, this tactic is nothing new.

It would be easy to ignore them, to joke or laugh. But obtaining real freedom is not easy. To make progress, the Gay and Lesbian community and their friends, would be wise to make note of the people who propose and support those measures in their state. Thanks to these discriminatory bills, everyone one gets to know who is who. By publicizing their names and associated businesses, it becomes easy to make choices as to where you, your family and friends do business and who you vote for or against.

For those in Missouri, get to know State Senator Wayne Wallingford(R). And of course, your very own State Senator. The bigots do that, so can you.

As for the other states that have a pending bill or planning to have one, bring it on. Let everyone know who you are.

Posted in LGBTQ, Politics

Akin & Missouri Farm Bureau – Two Old Geezers

Missouri Farm Bureau is a membership organization.

So how do they get members? Easy – sell insurance at a competitive rate. How do you get that great less expensive insurance? Become a member. But do all the members really know what they are buying into — bet not.

As a member, you would be supporting their opposition to “abortion except in cases of rape, incest, or when the life of the mother is in danger . . .” supporting their opposition to “concept of a ‘Gay Bill of Rights.’ . . . legalization of gay marriages by either state or national legislation . . .” Farm Bureau also states that they “oppose the addition of the term ‘sexual orientation” into the non-discrimination disclaimer by the state or federal government or any institution receiving public funding.” Not surprisingly they support the passage of the Federal Marriage Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. You can find the full text at  http://mofb.org/LegislativeIssuesPolicies/PolicyStatement.aspx under the Policy Quick Find subtopic “Moral Issues.”

Also under the topic of “Moral Issues” is their opposition to the National Endowment for the Arts receiving tax monies. That one was probably written in because of the controversy some years ago concerning the photography exhibit of Robert Mapplethorpe.

But gays and lesbians and pro-choice folks are not the only ones who might be concerned with Farm Bureau Policy.

Farm Bureau also states:

“We oppose the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” enacted in 2010 and urge its repeal.”

“We support a voter photo identification card.”

“We oppose federal minimum wage laws.”

“We oppose the regulation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under the Federal Clean Air Act.”

There are more of course, and you can read the entire Policy statement at http://mofb.org/LegislativeIssuesPolicies/PolicyStatement.aspx

No wonder Akin received the FARM-PAC endorsement.

There will be a certain number of people who believe Farm Bureau is right. So be it.

But my question to those who are considering joining to get the insurance or those who may already be members is —

Can you live with the knowledge you are supporting these issues with your membership money?

That Farm Bureau will be using your money to promote their beliefs?

If you disagree or perhaps even agree, with Missouri Farm Bureau, you may reach them by telephone, toll free, 800 922-4632 or 573 893-1400. Their address, incase you wanted to dash off a note, is 761 S. Country Club Drive, P.O. Box 658, Jefferson City, MO 65109.

Oh, and in case you wanted to stop by, this is what their digs in Jeff City look like:

Missouri Farm Bureau headquarters, Jefferson City, Missouri