What’s the problem?

Thank you, Republicans. You really love mass-shootings, don’t you? It gives you an excuse to trot out your Bible. It gives you an excuse to blame the weak, the poor, the minorities, for all the failings of our great nation. It gives you an excuse to sell even more guns because, of course, mass-shootings means they’re comin’ fer yer guns!

And what irks me most with this, the most popular post on the subject at the moment, is the last bit, about courts without justice. Last year Colin Kaepernick knelt during the national anthem to protest injustice. How did you Republicans respond? Well, not very kindly…

Stephen Paddock shot and killed 58 people – some of whom might have even been Republicans – and injured more than 500. I’ll just ask you Republicans one simple yes-or-no question:

If Paddock didn’t have any guns, would he have shot and killed 58 people – some of whom might even have been Republicans – and injured more than 500?


Let America be America again

A recent poll reveals that 51% of Americans agree that NFL players who sit or kneel during the national anthem should be punished, as President Trump has suggested. That’s right, the majority of Americans want players fined, suspended, or fired, for disrespecting the flag.

This has divided the nation. You must be on one side or the other. Either you are loyal to the flag, and all that it represents, or you are disloyal, and deserve to be punished. This could not be any clearer:

If you are more upset with the fact that football players aren’t standing during the singing of the Star Spangled Banner than the fact that cops are killing blacks with impunity, then you are part of the problem.

It’s just that simple.

Let America Be America Again

Langston Hughes, 1902 – 1967

Let America be America again.
Let it be the dream it used to be.
Let it be the pioneer on the plain
Seeking a home where he himself is free.

(America never was America to me.)

Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed—
Let it be that great strong land of love
Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme
That any man be crushed by one above.

(It never was America to me.)

O, let my land be a land where Liberty
Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath,
But opportunity is real, and life is free,
Equality is in the air we breathe.

(There’s never been equality for me,
Nor freedom in this “homeland of the free.”)

Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark?
And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?

I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart,
I am the Negro bearing slavery’s scars.
I am the red man driven from the land,
I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek—
And finding only the same old stupid plan
Of dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak.

I am the young man, full of strength and hope,
Tangled in that ancient endless chain
Of profit, power, gain, of grab the land!
Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need!
Of work the men! Of take the pay!
Of owning everything for one’s own greed!

I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil.
I am the worker sold to the machine.
I am the Negro, servant to you all.
I am the people, humble, hungry, mean—
Hungry yet today despite the dream.
Beaten yet today—O, Pioneers!
I am the man who never got ahead,
The poorest worker bartered through the years.

Yet I’m the one who dreamt our basic dream
In the Old World while still a serf of kings,
Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true,
That even yet its mighty daring sings
In every brick and stone, in every furrow turned
That’s made America the land it has become.
O, I’m the man who sailed those early seas
In search of what I meant to be my home—
For I’m the one who left dark Ireland’s shore,
And Poland’s plain, and England’s grassy lea,
And torn from Black Africa’s strand I came
To build a “homeland of the free.”

The free?

Who said the free? Not me?
Surely not me? The millions on relief today?
The millions shot down when we strike?
The millions who have nothing for our pay?
For all the dreams we’ve dreamed
And all the songs we’ve sung
And all the hopes we’ve held
And all the flags we’ve hung,
The millions who have nothing for our pay—
Except the dream that’s almost dead today.

O, let America be America again—
The land that never has been yet—
And yet must be—the land where every man is free.
The land that’s mine—the poor man’s, Indian’s, Negro’s, ME—
Who made America,
Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain,
Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain,
Must bring back our mighty dream again.

Sure, call me any ugly name you choose—
The steel of freedom does not stain.
From those who live like leeches on the people’s lives,
We must take back our land again,

O, yes,
I say it plain,
America never was America to me,
And yet I swear this oath—
America will be!

Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death,
The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies,
We, the people, must redeem
The land, the mines, the plants, the rivers.
The mountains and the endless plain—
All, all the stretch of these great green states—
And make America again!

A matter of honor

Football. Saints at the Packers. Steelers at the Bears. Giants at the Eagles. Texans at the Patriots. And all the rest. And rising for our National Anthem to honor our military. Or silently protesting to honor those who have fallen due to injustice.

Manuel Loggins Jr., 31

Ramarley Graham, 18

Shereese Francis, 29

Rekia Boyd, 22

Jamar Clark, 24

Yvette Smith, 47

Tamir Rice, 12

Laquan McDonald, 17

Akai Gurley, 28

Eric Garner, 43

Ezell Ford, 25

Michael Brown Jr., 18

Christian Taylor, 19

Walter Scott, 50

Natasha McKenna, 37

Freddie Gray, 25

Brendon Glenn, 29

Samuel DuBose, 43

Gregory Gunn, 58

Akiel Denkins, 24

Amadou Diallo, 23

Ronald Madison, 40

Kendra James, 21

Sean Bell, 23

Alton Sterling, 37

I’ll be silently protesting…

That’s just my opinion.

Yesterday, the White House called for the firing of ESPN’s Jemele Hill over her recent tweets in which she called the President a White Supremacist. Later, ESPN accepted Hill’s public apology.

The social media storm continues, however, with many Republicans still angry over her tweets, her apology, and ESPN’s response.

Compare all that to what happened after the Charlottesville tragedy. The President’s initial response was that there was blame on “both sides”. Susan Bro was angered by those words. It was her daughter, Heather Heyer, who was killed by the White Supremacist who drove his car into the crowd of protestors.

Susan Bro received death threats for refusing to speak to the President.

Hill probably went a little overboard with her tweet. But that was nothing compared to a grief-stricken mother getting death threats. That’s just my opinion. What’s yours?

“Don’t ever get angry at a man for stating the truth.” – Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged