Answering the Question

images.jpgThe question was:

Would you save one 5-year-old child from a burning building, or save 1,000 embryos.

The honest answer, which reportedly has never been realized, demonstrates that so-called Right-To-Life advocates are not what they profess to be and can not in all honesty insist that others conform to their Right-To-Life demands.

But to me this question exposes a possibly more fundamental hypocrisy.

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Dissent Is Not UnAmerican!

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In the days after September 11, 2001, government-sponsored mottoes like “United We Stand” became code language for the sinister notion that to critique government policy is to be a disloyal American. In the face of a heavy-handed attempt to silence free speech, City Lights inaugurated our Storefront Banner Series (shown above in a photo from October 2001) with a bold assertion of our First Amendment right to question the policies and actions of our government, one of America’s most basic and most critical freedoms.

As we anticipate the inauguration of a president and administration whose approach to dissenting opinion may become even more heavy-handed, we intend to do our part to defend our right to read, write, gather, debate and dissent. We are convinced of the need to nurture and protect peoples’ ability to think critically, to discern truth, and to communicate knowledge, and we believe that these qualities are basic to an empowered citizenry, essential to the future of a democratic society. In this, along with you, we stand united.

— From City Lights Newsletter, December 2016

Smile On Your Brother

images.jpgI’ve had a couple of days to further evaluate and learn from the recent police killings in Minnesota and Louisiana. I hinted at a conclusion that could be made in my earlier post but now I am even more convinced. In both killings (and many other earlier police killings) what is often mentioned but I have not realized the significance of until just now is that the police murdered both victims when neither victim had done anything wrong. The victim or even fear of the victim did not cause the police officer to shoot.

The police officer took an innocent man’s life without any due process for the clear reason that he was afraid. Not afraid of anything the victim did or even anything the victim was likely to do. The police officer was afraid because the Right-Wing media and the Right-Wing supported political institutions continually beat it into his subconscious mind that he needs to be afraid. The big lie in America nowadays is how anyone that doesn’t look like you or act like you think they should act is ipso facto out to destroy the American way of life and more to the point, out to get you. A secondary rant coming from many organizations but chiefly the Nation Rifle Association is that survival in the American jungle makes having a large collection of expensive and impressive firearms a requirement.

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