On Saturday, before attending the rally protesting the presidential administration’s immigration policies, I visited with an elderly Republican in my neighborhood.
I asked her what she was proud of that the Republican Party was doing.
She said she was proud that President Donald Trump “is uniting the families.”
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I asked who separated the families if Trump is uniting them: “Obama.”
Where is this reframing of the laws, history and the news coming from? If Americans believe just any old garbage some news channel spews out, with no confirmation, what is the value of our free speech? What is the value of our universal public education? Do some of us have no capability of critical analysis?
What can we and the news media do about this epidemic of gullibility?
I recently watched the second episode of the new so-called Western TV series “Yellowstone” on the Paramount Network, and I feel as if I need to take a shower or throw up — or maybe both.
Kevin Costner, what were you thinking? This is nothing more than snippets of scenes spliced together to make a dirty, vulgar, vain, crass piece of junk that is unfaithful to any known family virtue.
And Kevin, you might want to drop that gravelly voice. It just sounds like you need to clear your throat.
Mary Pat Miller
The name-calling, the misrepresentations, the noise coming from Washington distracts us from the downward slide of American democracy.
We are distracted by slams against the news media, the legal system and others President Donald Trump calls the “elites,” and we don’t notice that while Republican legislators and courts are depriving workers of bargaining tools and making voting more difficult, they are also dismantling measures that protect consumers from fraud, discrimination and predatory lending. They quietly advance measures to turn over to big business the running of our schools, roads, prisons, health care and Social Security.
What far-right members of our government and courts intend for the ordinary citizens of this country is not just chilling; it reflects the radical plan conceived six decades ago and described in Nancy MacLean’s “Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America.” The 2017 book is available in bookstores and for checkout at libraries.
For your own sake, for the sake of your children and grandchildren and for the sake of our democracy, read it.
I am appalled at the lack of human dignity and decency we are showing people trying to come across our southern border. We must act humanely, and we must act now.
I am asking my representative in Washington to reunite children with their families and create humane immigration reform, even if that means abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement. We cannot stand for people being treated like this.
Please give options to Kansans to help migrant families and children separated from their parents. My family has adopted a child from Guatemala and would be happy to foster a Central American migrant family or child until they can be reconnected with their family.
Please do not stand for children to remain in institutions. As an adoptive parent and student therapist, I know the brain trauma these children will permanently suffer. We cannot allow it to get worse or continue.
The Supreme Court was created in 1789 with the goal of having the nation’s finest legal minds interpret the law, based strictly on merit. However, it was not long before presidents and other political leaders started stacking the deck by vetting candidates ideologically and nominating younger people to lock in one’s political views for several decades.
The result is that a lay person can predict how each justice will vote on each issue. The hearings become an impressive sideshow of legalese that has little bearing on the final decision.
I believe two changes would enable the court to better serve the American people: First, to ensure more moderate judges, Senate confirmation should require 60 votes. Second, there should be term limits (perhaps 15 years) rather than lifetime appointments.
Although the party in power would be unlikely to accept any changes, the law could be passed so it would not go into effect until a future date when the party in power would be uncertain.
For personal reasons, I choose to become a better citizen and conduct myself in a manner that would give more meaning to those who suffered to found our nation in democracy.
Here are my intentions as a citizen, all of which are well within the protections of the First Amendment to our Constitution, to prepare for our soon-coming semiquincentennial celebration:
▪ To live my life, beginning July 4, 2018, demonstrating the values and virtues of one particular American patriot: Captain Thomas Dring, who was twice imprisoned on British prison ships during the War for Independence.
▪ To fully leverage my freedoms of speech, press, assembly and religion and to petition government for the benefit of all.
▪ To serve and protect those who have been denied their rights under our Constitution.
▪ To help create and promote the concept of a “near-perfect nonprofit organization”
▪ To encourage my fellow citizens to become great citizens and live in such way that would give more meaning to the sacrifices of our country’s Founding Fathers and its patriots.
In support of these intentions with a firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, I pledge to my fellow citizens, my life, my fortunes and my sacred honor.