DEFUNDING DEMANDS

Turning a Trumpian Weapon on America

No matter what political party people are in, they don’t get it. They are befuddled by the protester’s sign that reads: DEFUND THE POLICE. The unvarnished truth is that people don’t understand words. The first step in true communication is knowing the difference between a verbal trick and nuance. That word started out in Latin word for “cloud” and then moves into French as “to shade” and the English derivative as “a subtle difference in or shade of meaning.” Let me light the way.

About two years ago, I attended a fund raiser for a local botanical garden. I sat next to a genuinely nice and intelligent lady who was a guest of a local lawyer. As the conversation turned to politics, my single malt scotch whiskey started talking and I forcefully answered her question about what I thought of Donald Trump. I clearly barked, “He’s an idiot.” She looked incredibly surprised and said, “No he’s not. He’s a successful businessperson and doing great things for America.” Yes, you guessed it, the rest of the night I avoided talking politics or religion.

The irony of the 42-year-old botanical garden is that recently, the local wealthy Republican controlled government attempted to strip the landmark of its non-profit status. The local council has also blocked a new parking garage from being built, which may force the garden to leave the city limits. Why? Because local governments are not always long-term thinkers. The garden is a civic asset.

Think about it! They fund local schools, police, fire departments, libraries and parks. But while they are mandated to do good things with your tax dollars, they don’t always see the forest from the trees. They will constantly increase the amount of money for police, police stations, military-style equipment, but will cut funding for things like gardens, parks, libraries, homeless shelters, food banks, animal welfare centers and additional mental health personnel in our schools. They have the power to defund any project or organization they see as unnecessary or frivolous.

Oh, there will be hearings, when the citizen taxpayers are given a few minutes to express themselves. But it’s inevitable that only a few people decide how they spend your money. If they are blatantly wrong, you must wait for an election to change them out. What if something is systemically wrong? What if one of the departments was not only wasting money, but was gaming the system so that oversight, review and reform was not possible? My old line, “Too busy to get the job done” applies to this ailment.

Trump has been “very effective” in changing government and one of the arrows in his demented quiver is DEFUNDING. He just goes into the budget of America and says, we don’t need inspectors “for this or that.” He just defunds a department and renders it unworkable. Trump got rid of the team in the White House that was supposed to look out for a global pandemic. He’s been cannibalizing Obamacare from the day he took office. He’s an unworthy caretaker of the Earth who took away all the environmental rules and staff to patrol polluters. He buffoons at the microphone about how we have the cleanest air and purest water. That sounds like an “idiot” to me.

Trump is a tough guy wannabe who thinks the police will defend him if things go horribly wrong. He used to think that about the military, as well, but lately he’s not so sure they are on his side. What I am feeling right now is the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) are merging into an evil cloud over America. Please allow me to expand.

Trump continually brands himself as the “law and order” president. That rhetoric has been used by many local mayors and governors to send a message that they are not going to take any shit from anyone. Okay, but who is the real enemy in this equation? In Trump’s viewpoint, anyone who disagrees with him is the adversary.

With all this crazy stuff with COVID and then the George Floyd disaster, the Donald is staring right into a double-barreled challenge. Unrest is not good. Recent polls show that 80% of the people surveyed think the nation is out of control.

A President is supposed to fix things and bring the country together, not make things worse. The President believes if he just tweets “everything is under control,” everyone will follow him. They won’t. Trump will galvanize the left with this tough talk, while alienating the moderates with his inability to see anything beyond money and his own need for admiration. If I were to march in the street tomorrow, I would he holding a sign DEFUND THE WHITE HOUSE. I don’t want those assholes he’s assembled there deciding what to do with my money.

That brings us to these young kids with their posters saying DEFUND THE POLICE. Most people don’t get it. It’s brilliant. The only thing that gets a politician’s attention is when you threaten to defund one of their pet projects. And the only way to really reform the police departments is to take away the funds, and then, ask the city mothers and fathers to sit down and talk about how to make law enforcement work better. First, get rid of all that military stuff. You don’t need a tank or a rocket launcher in domestic law enforcement unless you are planning to kill us all. And next, why are you killing people who are not involved in violent crime?

There are 17,985 U.S. police agencies in the United States which include City Police Departments, County Sheriff’s offices, State Police/Highway Patrol and Federal Law Enforcement agencies and all those agencies employ about 800,000 policemen and women; 15.5% are African American. We have the most people per capita imprisoned than any country in the world with almost 2.3 million people in 1,719 state prisons, 109 federal prisons, 1,772 juvenile facilities, 3,163 local jails, and 80 Indian Country jails.

It’s a little bit like when they say, “The more testing for COVID-19, the more cases you’ll get.” I say, “The more police you have, the more people you’ll arrest,” and the more people will end up in jail. Don’t get me wrong, we need police, but we need a better system. This is systemic stupidity and failure.

So, first, take the money that’s currently invested into the military-industrial police state and use it to build and run better schools. And let’s teach people to not call 9-11 to report things that are NOT crimes. What a waste of time and money when cops come to help get a cat out of the tree in the front yard. We need more service-oriented people and specific phone numbers for auxiliary services. Let the police do police work. That must be defined during defunding.

Next, stop the iron fisted control of law enforcement by the FOP and bring in total transparency. There should be a national database for all 17,985 police agencies and their personnel so we know who those fucking bad apples are. Stop saying it’s only a few bad apples. Bad apples next to other apples, makes the whole barrel rot. Not only is it a bad metaphor, we saw the other three “good apples” in Minneapolis keep the unarmed black man down until he was dead.

And after defunding your police department, why don’t you re-interview all the officers who want to come back to work. Get to know them and find out what their personnel files really hold. You might be surprised that some of the people on the thin blue line don’t deserve to get their jobs back. And the good apples, bring them back, give them a raise, and count on them to do a good job keeping you safe.

We need to stop listening to the idiot in the White House, who wants to pick fights with professional athletes, movie stars and even NASCAR drivers who will take a knee this time. Trump is on the wrong side of this issue because he cannot read America properly and because he just can’t read. IF THE GOAL OF THOSE PROTESTING THE POLICE WAS TO GET YOUR ATTENTION, THEY GOT YOUR ATTENTION! NOW WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO?

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs If you only read one chapter of this book, it’s called, Take a Knee for America and thought about this never-ending conflict between minorities and the police. It’s not really taking a stand I’m asking you to do, but having a real frank conversation about why some people think they way they do would be productive right now. It’s a book for the moment and starts the conservation of peace. And if you are worried about social media, check out the chapter called Social Media Menace.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


OPEN LETTER TO AMERICA

Is Trump More White Than Right?

I don’t know about you, but when I look down at my hands, I don’t see white, I see what can be best described as “skin color.” That statement is a racism misnomer, but do you understand why? When your kids investigate a box of crayons, what color do they pick to depict skin tone? I am not WHITE. I am a fleshy, old-guy Caucasian color. Just as the skin of a black man or woman is not exactly the color of black, we are all shades of different colors ranging between hardly any pigmentation to extremely dense layers. Even Crayola has a difficult time defining skin colors. They say I will find eight different colors that represent skin tones from around the globe, including apricot, black, burnt sienna, mahogany, peach, sepia, tan, and white. Amazing!

During the first five years of my life, I lived in a neighborhood that was rapidly changing from white to African American. In the 1950s, I attended a church daycare center with kids of every race. The facility had a big round communal urinal, similar in style to one of those champagne fountains you see at big parties. In terms of shape and size, my school buddies looked like me and I have carried this with me my whole life. We were alike biologically, but we had different colors of hair and shades of skin.

You experienced the reverse of the lack of skin coloration the first time you saw an albino. It’s a term that refers to oculocutaneous albinism (OCA), a condition under which a human being produces little or none of the melanin pigment.

Melanin is the term for a group of pigments occurring naturally in most organisms. They determine our skin color. According to experts, humans migrated into the arid, open landscapes of Asia, which is now eastern Europe, about 1.2 million years ago. This migration was most likely triggered by a megadrought on the African continent and the excessive ultraviolet-b radiation led to a human skin evolution, under which a darker pigmentation came about to protect against folate depletion due to increased exposure to sunlight. There is another theory claiming that the shape of certain migrants’ eyes changed to protect their sight from blindness due to a harsh sun, thus the faces of Asians are shaped differently than white Europeans and Africans.

The reason I have spent so much time on the color of skin is because it’s at the root of the racism we are seeing. Racism is simply defined as prejudice, discrimination or antagonism against someone of a different race based on your belief that your own race is superior. Most define race by the color of one’s skin.

I know you are probably thinking, “I don’t believe I am superior,” but are you sure about that? When I was five years old, I moved from the city to the suburbs and spent the next 14 years of my life going to school and living in a community that was totally white. The attitudes of the 1950s and 1960s in Pennsylvania were not as confrontational and verbally abusive as those in some southern states, but were there, under the surface. African Americans were called “colored people” where I lived, and we had black and brown crayons to represent those “others.” In the good old days, there was no “skin color” crayon in the box, only white.

Donald Trump, the present President of the United States, has had to defend a “racist” tag for years. From lawsuits claiming discrimination in housing, to his Central Park Five full-page ad calling for the execution of unjustly charged, convicted and confined African Americans, Trump has a target on his back. Most people just assume he’s a bigot and racist because of the things he does and says. His lack of strength or ability to call-out white supremacists like Neo-Nazis, KKK members and far-right anarchists is apparent. In the last four years, he’s been more white than right.

Great Day for George Floyd

You can plainly see his racism every day. Today, Trump Tweeted a letter that said the peaceful protesters the military cleared out of Lafayette Park for his photo-op with a Bible were TERRORISTS. To be fair, it wasn’t his idea. It was his broke-dick lawyer John Dowd’s letter that inflamed the president. John Dowd almost got Trump thrown out of office, why would the Donald listen to anything he has to say? And Mr. President, when you retweet, you are endorsing the thoughts of another.

We all grow up. Some of us change. According to an ABC News/Ipsos poll out today, 74% of Americans view George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis as an underlying racial injustice problem. The rash of African American male deaths by the hands of police officers that happened a hundred years ago never made the white owned and run newspapers. The crack in the ceiling of racism got its first opening because of one brave, African American boy.

After being accused of offending a white woman in his family’s grocery store, 14-year-old African American Emmett Louis Till was lynched in Mississippi in 1955. FREEZE FRAME THIS. He was executed because he “offended” a white person. We later learned that the offense he was accused of never happened.

When Emmett was six years old, he contracted polio which led to a persistent stutter. Some white people characterized this as a lack of intelligence. Southern newspapers printed funeral pictures of Emmett’s beaten, tortured and mutilated corpse in an open casket. His mother, Mamie Till, demanded that people see what the murderers had done to her son. Some newspapers editorialized, “Now is the time for every citizen who loves the state of Mississippi to ‘Stand up and be counted’ before hoodlum white trash brings us to destruction.” So, things haven’t changed that much. We just saw an unarmed black man shot to death in Georgia and another unarmed African American suffocated to death by a cop kneeing on his throat. Lots of TV people are talking about the racial problems in America, but they are saying the same things Americans heard back in the day.

Trump has done nothing to bring us together as a nation. I often repeat this, but HE IS DOING NOTHING TO SOLVE THE PROBLEM of systemic racism. His lies are destroying people’s careers, lives and livelihoods. I am hopeful that something is coming, change is coming, and Donald Trump will be dumped on the heap of those people who were too stupid to even know they are racist.

Hey, America, you could have left those Africans in Africa, but you didn’t. You used guns to force them onto boats to come to this country and do your work. You kept them down for hundreds of years. To this day, we continue to keep them underpaid, under-employed and constantly challenged in their quest for the American dream. To move forward, we must not get caught up in the guilt of the original sin of the United States. First, go to the mirror and confront your inner soul. Do you think you are superior? If so, work on yourself. If not, then ask yourself what you have done to make America great for all. You cannot say go back to where you came from unless you are willing to leave yourself. Native Americans can disregard that last sentence.

There is no superior SKIN COLOR, just as there is no singular IQ value or DNA set that makes one human better than the next. Please, for God’s sake, do not turn to Donald Trump for anything. He’s not going to be around forever and when he’s gone, we can put his statue in the Stupid Museum. Remember, he’s the guy who told us how bad immigrants are, and then proceeded to hire lots of undocumented workers and immigrants in his businesses. I’m sure he likes those people because they work for less money. What a damn hypocrite.

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs If you only read one chapter of this book, it’s called, Take a Knee for America and thought about this never-ending conflict between minorities and the police. It’s not really taking a stand I’m asking you to do, but having a real frank conversation about why some people think they way they do would be productive right now. It’s a book for the moment and starts the conservation of peace. And if you are worried about social media, check out the chapter called Social Media Menace.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


ONEROUS OPTICS OF AN OBNOXIOUS OAF

Trump’s Treachery & Actions Loudly Backfiring

We’ve all experienced the harsh reality of spending so much time with someone, like a roommate, where even small annoyances are amplified when around them. This might not be fair, but it’s something we do as human beings. I have a major uneasiness when I see Donald Trump standing. Why does he lean unnaturally forward? It looks like a bizarre attempt to redistribute his 245 pounds of heavy fat.

Off Balance President

I remember my son’s first roommate in college was an overweight guy who never went to class, stayed in the room and played video games all day. I asked my son if he was bothered by him. He smiled, “He’ll be gone soon, Dad. He doesn’t go to class.” I was immensely proud of my son’s logical evaluation of what I would have seen as a major problem. That guy was gone after 40 days and my son then had his own room.

Admittedly, I see Donald Trump much differently now that I live in Florida then how I viewed him when he was my state neighbor in New York. I always thought he was nothing more than a bottom feeder, slum lord and classless publicity whore. He seemed a bit ashamed that he wasn’t part of the ultra-rich elite of the city. He always appeared to be trying too hard. No one of any real power and intelligence ever took him seriously.

On June 4, 2020, many of the news outlets were covering the harsh rebuke of the 45th President by former Secretary of Defense and retired General James Mattis’ op-ed in The Atlantic. It reminded me of the September 5, 2018 essay the New York Times published titled, I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration.

Mattis’ piece stated, “I have watched this week’s unfolding events, angry and appalled. The words ‘Equal Justice Under Law’ are carved in the pediment of the United States Supreme Court. This is precisely what protesters are rightly demanding. It is a wholesome and unifying demand — one that all of us should be able to get behind. We must not be distracted by a small number of lawbreakers. The protests are defined by tens of thousands of people of conscience who are insisting that we live up to our values — our values as people and our values as a nation. We must reject and hold accountable those in office who would make a mockery of our Constitution.”

The most potent line in the article is, “Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people — does not even pretend to try. Instead, he tries to divide us.” While the liberal media was quoting Mattis’ frustration with Trump dividing the country, I wanted to scream, “WHAT TOOK YOU SO LONG?”

Fox News was doing the president’s bidding by playing up a New York Times op-ed written by Arkansas’ Senator Tom Cotton titled Tom Cotton: Send in the Troops. I’m sure Donald John Trump knew the Mattis slam job was coming and recruited another cotton-pickin’ politician to write something that attempted to take the heat off Trump. Backfired, again.

Let’s deal with the truth. Cotton is a decorated veteran who served as a Captain in both Afghanistan and Iraq. He’s a well-educated Harvard graduate with degrees in government and law. Cotton has been against Affirmative Action and other attempts to deal with long-term, systemic racism. This is not an opinion; it’s fact. I am not saying he’s a racist, but he’s been frustrated with mandated benefits for African Americans in education and life.

Tom Cotton has been mentioned as a possible replacement for Vice President Mike Pence on the 2020 ticket. I don’t like Pence, but if Trump were to make such a big change so close to the election there would be major backlash and possible panic with evangelicals.

Of course, a soldier takes his command from the President. I suggest that Cotton’s Send in the Troops is part of a plan for Donald Trump and his administration to take more power and control the election narrative. Captain, or shall I say Capo, Cotton is wanting to control you if you disagree with him.

Do we really need a strong man wannabe dictator in the White House? It’s so Nixon-like to say that protesters, whether looting or not, should be rapped upside the head to learn their lesson. The dissenters are trying to inform the President that we cannot keep killing unarmed people, whatever their color, and get away with it. Trump clearing out Lafayette Park so that he could walk to a church and stand, leaning into the camera, with the Holy Bible in his little hands didn’t do what he imagined.

It sent ripples through the Pentagon, which created difficulty for those men and women who are sworn to protect the Constitution. It sparked more anger from those who truly dislike Trump and forced religious leaders to take a stand against what he did. Why is no one intelligently, or even strategically, discussing what Trump will do next? Well, here he goes again, saying one thing and doing another. President Donald Trump tweeted out a letter Thursday (6-4-2020) that referred to a group of protesters as “terrorists.” The letter was from Trump’s former lawyer John Dowd, who proved he’s more an ideologue than a good lawyer.

What is so insane and so obsessive is Trump’s need to always be right or seen as an honest broker. Mark Esper, Secretary of the Defense, admitted that he didn’t know why they walked to the church. Trump claimed he didn’t give the order to clear the park. He said it was Attorney General William who decided to move on the peaceful protesters. Trump preached that his church stunt was not a photo-op, but a symbolic message of hope to the country. Really? When asked whether the bible he held was his, Trump replied, “It’s A bible.” Jeez, what a stupid thing to say.

I hope that more and more voters will come to realize that Donald Trump is more than an evil threat to the Constitution. He’s poisonousness, and if you let this obnoxious oaf spend have more time in the White House he will destroy our democracy. More people will die from viruses, military force and neglect. This insanity must stop.

When we started this blog, we asked “Why Wait 4 Years?” This is not merely a Trump-thing. It’s an enticement to every person in this great land to get involved, state your case, and make people listen to what you want from your government. America isn’t just for Trump, Cotton, Mattis and old, rich white guys; it’s for all of us. As ironic as it might seem for me to use this phrase, “It’s time to take our country back.”

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs If you only read one chapter of this book, it’s called, Take a Knee for America and thought about this never-ending conflict between minorities and the police. It’s not really taking a stand I’m asking you to do, but having a real frank conversation about why some people think they way they do would be productive right now. It’s a book for the moment and starts the conservation of peace. And if you are worried about social media, check out the chapter called Social Media Menace.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.