Like many others, I had reservations about using this image for a meme, as I don’t want to disrespect this boy’s death.
But then I thought, it is even more disrespectful for people to ignore and shut out this child’s death and the many others like him. People need to see what is going on to give context to Trump’s shameful policy of blocking refugees from certain countries and giving Christians “priority.”
I think it’s a shame that our country would turn away refugees, when it is known that doing so can very well be a death sentence. It reflects a fundamental selfishness, as well as a deadly cowardice. We are supposed to be the “home of the brave.” Not so much, anymore, I guess.
I don’t understand how people can be proud of any of this.
Well, another New Year is upon us. I think a lot of people would agree that 2016 has been, as Helen Mirren said, a “pile of shit.”
We lost so many monumental talents that transcended their art to become inspirational beacons for humanity as a whole, and witnessed just how much xenophobic nationalism and division have festered in our country as well as across the pond.
But, as much as this year has sucked, I always come back to the idea that the entire concept of a “year” (and time itself) is just another illusion. It’s just a way in which we attempt to measure and quantify our existence on Earth, and doesn’t really exist. As someone wrote somewhere, “Time doesn’t exist. Clocks do.” No matter what year we say it is, the world just goes on constantly spinning, offering us only consecutive and fleeting moments, not actual days or years.
Still, one positive to the concept of a New Year is that it offers inspiration and motivation for change and growth. It offers us the feeling that we have an opportunity to make things better, and cast away all of the negative stuff that has impeded us or cast a dark shadow upon our days. So, here’s to seizing every single moment that we’re blessed to be here, and let’s give 2017 everything we’ve got, on an individual and collective level, to create a better world for everybody.
Happy New Year everyone!
Back in July, conservative radio host Laura Ingraham made a gesture at the end of her Republican National Convention speech, which looked a lot like a Nazi salute. She understandably got a lot of backlash on social media, and although it definitely looked bad to me, I thought that it could have been an awkward wave or unintentional. Besides, would someone really have the nerve to do that on national television in America, representing one of the two major political parties? I thought there might be a chance that it was sort of accidental. Accusing someone of being a white-supremacist is a pretty heavy allegation, and it’s not something to be thrown around lightly.
However, after watching a recent video from The Atlantic which has surfaced, which shows white supremacists (I am refusing to use the passive euphemism “alt right”) offering up actual Nazi salutes and shouting “hail Trump!” at a conference in DC, any doubt that I had regarding Ingraham’s gesture has begun to fade. It simply looks like the exact same thing that Ingraham did, and there is no question as to the intention behind it, among the racists at that conference. There are plenty of people who deny that Ingraham was actually performing a Nazi salute, and they often provide still frames of other famous leaders mid-wave which appear to look the same as what Ingraham did. However, when you watch the video of her full gesture in context, it doesn’t look like just a coincidence.
How has the GOP come to this? I mean, full-blown white supremacists now? We have known there to be racists in the Republican party for years, but these days they aren’t even trying to hide it. Scary times, indeed.
America, you’re never, ever, ever going to live this one down. This repugnant, embarrassing, narcissistic, arrogant and disgraceful bully is the man you thought belonged in the White House. And the photo above represents just one of a mountain of things which should have disqualified him from the presidential race, long before voting even began.
Thanks for making us the laughing stock of the world, Trump voters. As George Carlin said, “garbage in, garbage out.”
Jon Stewart recently did an interview on “CBS This Morning” and was asked about his thoughts concerning the recent election of Donald Trump to the presidency. I am seeing a lot of this conversation being shared online, with a highlight on Stewart’s claims of “liberal hypocrisy” regarding viewing all Trump voters as a monolith of racists. He makes the point that a lot of people he knows that aren’t afraid of blacks, Muslims, Mexicans, etc. voted for Trump because of reasons other than his racist rhetoric, and the message is being taken that we shouldn’t call all Trump voters racist. The interview can be found here.
Well, nope! Jon Stewart is wrong on this point. I know some people want everyone to get along, and unify and settle our differences, but in my opinion he is letting Trump voters off the hook too easily. Racism is not something that exists in absolute forms – that is, it’s not a simple black and white, yes or no question. There are varying degrees of racism that people can have and display. And racism is not just defined by one’s behavior, but by the behavior they tolerate. And at the end of the day, Trump voters saw a man who disparaged Muslims, Mexicans, the disabled and women, and ran a campaign promising to register people based on their religion, or outright banning their immigration to the country. And those Trump voters said, by voting for that man – “hey, that’s okay with me.” And that is despicable, and we shouldn’t forget it.
It’s like when we had slavery. Not everyone was personally a slave owner, but the people who supported those in power who did own slaves were in their own way supporting that practice. So, by voting for Trump, people validated and supported all of his divisive rhetoric and the campaign promises he made (whether he actually fulfills all of them or not.)
I understand that people have an instinctual desire to get along with other people, and it’s easier to brush differences under the rug than to expose them and talk about them honestly. But the election of Trump is and should be viewed as an outrage. Those who voted for him displayed absolutely no respect or empathy for any of the groups he routinely disparaged. So, we’re divided. And I don’t know if it’s even possible that we can “heal” that division. But that’s reality, and we shouldn’t hide from it. Hiding from and denying reality are part of the reasons that led to a president-elect Trump in the first place.
Photo credit: Defense Dept. photo by Air Force Tech. Sgt. Adam M. Stump [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
The New York Times recently revealed that, due to claiming a nearly billion dollar loss in a single year in the mid 90’s, Donald Trump could theoretically have paid no taxes for the following 18 years. Since he claims to know the tax code better than anyone, and since he refuses to disclose his tax returns, it becomes very easy to believe that this is, in fact, the case. In addition, there was at least one year in the past in which it was revealed that he didn’t pay a cent.
This information exposes the Trump phenomenon as a movement of bigoted anger with little in terms of justifiable substance when it comes to the basis for that anger. Trump supporters have been said to be angry about feeling shafted economically for years and believing that the system is rigged against them. Their chosen savior? The person they think can and will fix their problems? A billionaire who very well could have lived for nearly twenty years in opulence and luxury without paying anything in taxes. Donald Trump is the EMBODIMENT of the rigged economy that these people are said to be so angry about.
Who do these people think have been picking up the slack? Do they not realize that THEY have? Do they really still think it’s just great that someone like Trump can live high on the hog for years while they struggle paycheck to paycheck to make ends meet?
The Trump phenomenon, then, isn’t really about economic anger. It’s about anger, definitely…But it’s part of a culture war, being waged against gains in recent decades made by minorities, women and gay people. These people want to go back to an America where English is the only language option at ATM’s, and where black and brown people and women know and remember their place in society. They want a “strong man” to take their anger out on those fucking terrorist Muslims and border-hopping Mexicans. They don’t want an actual answer to their problems, unless it involves fucking over the “others” in some way.
In short, Trump’s popularity and the closeness of the race to this point is really because of an electoral temper-tantrum. His supporters don’t want an America of fairness and equality. They just want America to be THEIRS again.
Colin Kaepernick has a lot of people talking as of late. A lot of anger, a lot of admiration, and some ambivalence, depending on who you talk to.
My own view is that most people are fine and dandy with the notion of free speech, until they hear or see something that they don’t like. Which is interesting, because the whole point of freedom of speech is that it is there to protect expression that may be unpopular.
Ultimately, whether a person agrees with Kaepernick or not, I would like to see them at least grant him that space to voice his opinion. He is aware of the possible consequences in terms of lost endorsements or backlash. So let him speak out if he so chooses.
I like it when people have the guts to take a stand, even if it may cost them millions of dollars and intense backlash. Colin Kaepernick refusing to stand during the national anthem definitely has people talking as of late.
And I think it’s funny how some of the same people who are mad about Kaepernick complaining about America, because he’s rich, want to elect a billionaire named Trump, who has built a presidential campaign complaining about how America isn’t great.
Some people come to define words and concepts better than anything else possibly could. When I think of Ann Coulter, all I think of is “ugly.” I’m not commenting on her physical appearance. I’m talking about the disgusting and repugnant hate and ugliness that she exhibits at seemingly every opportunity she gets. Truly an ugly person.
This is another piece of wisdom, the source of which is uncertain. Some have attributed it to Mark Twain, others to Lincoln, among several other notable figures.
But there’s no doubt about who embodies it perfectly – TRUMP. The man who is his own worst enemy, who couldn’t keep his mouth shut to save his life (or his campaign.)