Category Archives: Political thoughts

Help us, Kentucky voters, you are our only hope

I just finished writing a post about Mitch McConnell on the Daily Kos.  In it, I implore the voters of Kentucky to vote out the current Senate Majority Leader. I hope you will check it out. The caption that you cannot read says, “I would love to do more but I want to be reelected and I have to do what President Trump wants. It is impossible to know what he wants so I do nothing.”

While we do need to get rid of McConnell, it would also help for some GOP Senators to grow a spine. If you live in a state with a GOP senator, you can call 202-224-3121 or text “resist” to 50409.

It is time to take back Congress from the Trumpers.

This is how genocide starts

This was reprinted from Firebrand Left. As that website is no longer up and running, I found it on the Way Back Machine. I think we are past three and have reached five.

Over the past few days, I have been spending some time over at a pro-Donald Trump Facebook group. While I have found a lot of things I have heard Donald Trump say to be upsetting, frightening or just plain confusing, nothing I have heard him say comes even close to what his supporters say. They say the United States Constitution is “outdated.” They do, support the Second Amendment but the rest was written by people who did not have to deal with modern-day terrorism. This is how they justify hating Muslims. Islam, they say, is not a religion but a political ideology.

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This is not helpful for any real conversation but that is not the real problem. While I do not think it is appropriate to define 1.6 billion people this way but that is not the real problem either. The problem is not even that anti-Muslim rhetoric makes gives the extremists more ammunition to use against us or that it makes it harder to fight terrorism. The problem is that when you start defining this way, we are taking the first step towards genocide. That’s not the America I think we want to live in.

You may be thinking, “That’s pretty extreme.” It is but there is something that people do not realize about genocide. If you look at the phenomenon across centuries and continents, you will see genocide follows a predictable pattern. From Armenia and Germany to Rwanda and Sudan and then to Cambodia, there are ten steps all of these genocides follow. They are (per Genocide Watch):

  1. Classification
  2. Symbolization
  3. Discrimination
  4. Dehumanization
  5. Organization
  6. Polarization
  7. Preparation
  8. Persecution
  9. Extermination
  10. Denial

We are hovering somewhere between step one and three. We have not quite gotten to the point of actual discrimination but there are measures that have passed or considered to ban Sharia law in all but 16 American states. Who is behind all of this? A number of high profile Republicans such as Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann have spearheaded the “anti-Sharia” movement.

This belief, that Americans need to be protected from Muslims, has been advanced by the Trump campaign. HIs famous promises to build walls along the Mexican but not Canadian border and to ban entry by Muslims advance the cause of racism and Islamophobia. We need to be protected from what we see as “them.” Americans are Christian (and sometimes Jewish). That’s the ‘us.” Muslims are not true Americans who pay their taxes, love their families and serve in our military, they are outsiders to be feared and demonized.

Trump and his supporters point out the recent attacks throughout Europe, in Orlando and in New York and New Jersey. They do not mention the fact that the gunman in Orlando was born in New York nor do they talk about the Oklahoma City bombing by a United States born terrorist or the multitudes of shootings by Americans. No one was talking about religion when they looked at the massacres in Sandy Hook, Columbine or at 101 California Street. We are not being killed in mass numbers by Muslims coming into the country. We are too busy killing ourselves.

The problem with the people who think, and my feeling is that they really believe the things they are saying, that we are facing an existential threat. Adolph Hitler really believed that the world was engaged in an epic battle for survival against the Jews.  When people say things like, “there are no good Muslims and bad Muslims…” they are reading right out of the Nazi Germany playbook:

This is not what this country is all about. We cannot become complicit to the mentality that is promoted by the Trump supporters. We are better than that. I hope.

Photo by Gage Skidmore 

Donald Trump has done some amazing things. Seriously.

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on Februar...

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I do not care for Donald Trump. Not even a little bit. This is not because I am a Democrat and he is a Republican. I am more of a Republican than Trump and I have a Democratic donkey tattoo. If I had the chance to talk to Trump, I might say something like this, “I have known Republicans and you are no Republican.”

Having said that, Trump has done some amazing things. Here are a few:

  • I feel badly for Paul Ryan. While it is true that I have admitted to having a small crush on the speaker but that is not it. I disagree with him on everything but … he talks to Trump every day? That sounds cruel. I think the 8th Amendment to the Constitution should make that not happen.
  • Trump made me feel badly for Ted Cruz. At one point, Senator Lindsey Graham said Cruz could be murdered on the Senate floor without being convicted (by people in the Senate). That shows how unlikeable he is. When Trump went after his wife for her appearance and then said his dad was involved in the assassination of JFK, I was like, “Wow, that is just mean. Mean and crazy.”
  • Trump has made me miss George W. Bush. When “Dubya” was president, I thought we were scraping the bottom of the barrel but I was wrong. Dubya was not my first choice (or 500th choice) but we lived in a reality that involved facts and a common sense of things. He never said President Clinton wiretapped his offices or had his people defend his tweets by saying our microwave ovens can be used as spy devices. Dangit, I miss Dubya.

Trump is a narcissistic, sociopathic, thin skinned prick who thinks that he can mold reality to what he wants it to be. This is how he operated on reality TV and in Trump Tower where his word was it. That is not the way the rest of the world works.

Oh, Trump has also made me feel badly for his supporters, who voted for someone who will make their lives worse.