Posts Tagged ‘citizenship

20
Oct
14

An Open Letter to Democrats

If you have the time to go out to a club on a weekend, you have the time to vote.

If you have the time to parse the intricacies of your NFL fantasy football league, you have the time to vote.

If you have the time to drink a freshly poured craft beer, you have the time to vote.

If you have the time to play six hours of games on your Xbox One, you have the time to vote AND volunteer.

Voting is both a right and a privilege.

It is a right because those who came before you fought and died to continually expand the franchise. African Americans in the South couldn’t vote before 1964. Women couldn’t vote before 1920. Universal suffrage was gained by long, incremental struggle. It was not handed on a silver platter, fully formed out of the Founders’ heads like Athena from Zeus.

Voting is a privilege because it is a privilege to be a citizen of the world’s last remaining superpower. It is a privilege because as a mere citizen you have the power to decide your fate. If you eschew voting, to paraphrase Plato, you hand that power over to your inferiors, or at the very least to people who don’t see the world in the same way you do.

Continue reading ‘An Open Letter to Democrats’

20
Aug
14

We Are The Media

I haven’t written much about Ferguson since my last post, mostly because I can’t believe that in 2014 we’re reliving the 1960s.

But, this is something I haven’t done in the string of nights of unrest. I haven’t once turned on our vaunted mainstream media. No CNN, no MSNBC, heavens no Fox News. I’ve relied solely on Twitter to get information.

“But LL,” someone will say, “Twitter? People writing from their parents’ basements?”

Here’s a bit of what Twitter has produced.

Continue reading ‘We Are The Media’

18
Jun
14

The First Lady Speaks at Naturalization Ceremony

First Lady Michelle Obama hugs an immigrant next to Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson during a Naturalization Ceremony at the National Archives in Washington, June 18

22
May
14

When it gets to be too much

 

Yesterday, the House voted to provide subsidies for summertime children’s lunches only to “rural areas”. That wasn’t even a dog whistle, it was an out and out statement of racism.

A few days ago, a New Hampshire police commissioner not only called President Barack Obama a “n***er”, but defended his statement, saying that the President fit his definition for one. He refused to resign until just a couple of days ago.

Today, Mark Cuban admitted to “biases”. He could cross the street—in what I’m sure is a gated, nearly all-white community—if he saw a young black man in a hoodie coming towards him. Of course, if that young black man in a hoodie had a 42-inch vertical leap, I’m sure he’d take the time to sign him to a contract.

It seems as if the past few weeks have seen an explosion of insanity. As Pres. Obama succeeds in the face of unparalleled obstruction—Obamacare, the economy, isolating Russia—certain sectors of this country have decided on a scorched earth policy. If they can’t exercise untrammeled power, if the country elects and re-elects Pres. Obama, then burn everything, like Russians retreating before Napoleon.

It can be forgiven if one gets to feel downtrodden. The forces arrayed against progress are not minor. They have almost unlimited funding. They drive media narratives. They more or less own five Justices on the Supreme Court. The scenario would prove daunting and depressive to even the hardiest souls.

Continue reading ‘When it gets to be too much’

11
Apr
13

Rise and Shine…

First Lady Michelle delivers a heartfelt message in Chicago

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Today:

10:15AM        THE PRESIDENT and THE VICE PRESIDENT receive the Presidential Daily Briefing

11:00AM        THE PRESIDENT meets with members of the Financial Services Forum 

12:05PM         THE PRESIDENT holds a conference call with more than 100 local elected officials to discuss summer and year-round pathways to youth employment (Closed press)

2:10PM           THE PRESIDENT awards Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun, U.S. Army,the Medal of Honor; THE FIRST LADY also attends

   2:55PM           THE PRESIDENT meets with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

Briefing Schedule:

11:30AM        Press Briefing by Press Secretary Jay Carney

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As politicians in Washington took a step toward tightening the nation’s gun laws Wednesday, first lady Michelle Obama sat down with Chicago high school students whose stories about violence brought her to tears.

Before the meeting began at Harper High School in West Englewood, Obama said she wanted to hear from each of the 22 students representing youth programs at the school and that she had as much time as they needed to take. She had come home to Chicago, she said, to do a lot of listening.

So for two hours, the first lady sat in the second-floor library media center, away from the news media, as students told story after story about the challenges of dodging bullets, avoiding gangs and — the thing they cannot take for granted — staying alive.

*****

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