Monthly Archives: August 2017

Strategy in Afghanistan – President Trump

Well gotta like what Trump is saying tonight (and let me say I am not a fan of Trump), and that is we will no longer announce our strategic plans in advance of the condition. War is war and one cannot tip toe around the consequences of it, you either fight to win or don’t bother. Same as owning a gun, you don’t go around threatening that you are going to use it in a defense causing event, you use it and kill if have to in order to defend yourself.

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Hate Speech

Hate is ignorance and we all should realize that people or groups that perpetuate it are truly just stupid. Simple concept to just accept because we can’t ban speech whether one is “stupid” or not. Free speech is just that, free and the government has no right to regulate a “stupid” group of people’s right to free speech.

“The minute it becomes acceptable to break the law to silence one group, all others become vulnerable to attack by anyone who disagrees with them. That’s why the Supreme Court has repeatedly struck down government attempts to ban hate speech.”

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http://www.dispatch.com/opinion/20170819/editorial-banning-hate-speech-is-also-abhorrent

Editorial: Banning hate speech is also abhorrent
Posted at 5:00 AM

Last weekend’s events in Charlottesville, along with the threat of future protests by white supremacist groups, have sparked a national debate about placing legal limits on hate speech. The thinking is that some views are so abhorrent that they should be banned, and their advocates should not be allowed to assemble in public.

As long as it’s still legal to do so, we’d like to declare our abhorrence at the suggestion.

The rights of free speech and free assembly are bedrock principles of American democracy and major reasons why America’s founders revolted against British rule. There was a time when speaking against the British monarchy was deemed treasonous and subject to prison or even death. Even today, it’s technically illegal to call for abolition of the monarchy.

In the United States, neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan and other white supremacist groups are attempting a resurgence, bolstered in no small part by the sympathetic undertone of remarks issued on the campaign trail and in the White House by President Donald Trump. As repugnant as those groups are, it’s even more abhorrent to contemplate trashing the First Amendment to stifle their free speech.

The minute it becomes acceptable to break the law to silence one group, all others become vulnerable to attack by anyone who disagrees with them. That’s why the Supreme Court has repeatedly struck down government attempts to ban hate speech.

“A law that can be directed against speech found offensive to some portion of the public can be turned against minority and dissenting views to the detriment of all. The First Amendment does not entrust that power to the government’s benevolence. Instead, our reliance must be on the substantial safeguards of free and open discussion in a democratic society,” wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy in one assenting opinion this year.

The moment Americans empower the government to tell them what they can and cannot say, our nation and its cherished democratic principles will be doomed.

— St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Others must lead America

We are deeply distressed by our president’s cynical political calculations. By his meanness of tone and erratic behavior. By his serially insensitive reactions to the violent white supremacy rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, that has stained America.

If he’s looking around, the man now finds himself increasingly isolated. But Donald Trump probably isn’t leaving office anytime soon. And he isn’t likely to change. So America will have to deal with this bizarre, unfortunate presidency as it exists, rather than as we wish it to be.

That puts the onus on Congress, on Republican leaders such as House Speaker Paul Ryan and Vice President Mike Pence, on responsible administration officials, and on other adults who can challenge and counter him as necessary. They should proceed with the nation’s business, understanding that Trump may be more a distraction than a guiding force.

To the extent other leaders step up, America will be better off. The people’s interests will continue to be served. Legislation will get passed. The country will remain safe. American values will be protected. The courts, too, will continue to play their role, preserving the integrity of our democracy.

— Chicago Tribune

Monuments – Removing of

I’m so sick of all this hate especially wanting to go back and eradicate any monumental reference to our history just because it represented a time in history that disfavors a group today. Instead of focusing all that energy on taking down these monuments, work on what is today. Get involved, advocate, make your voice heard on our issues today. After all it is not what ultimately happened in our history it is what we have learned from that time and how we can make sure it doesn’t happen again. Seems to me taking down monuments is counter intuitive to that energy and focus. All this hate makes me want to pack up and reclaim my German citizenship and move to Germany. But then I think of a conversation I had yesterday evening with a new work colleague from Sierra Leone, Africa who came to this country because he had a dream, a dream of a wonderful country and although he disfavors our current climate and actions of our President he is proud to be an American. The pride and emotions I felt were hard to contain.

Confederate Monuments

Jeez, rename schools, tear down monuments, and now consider Camp Chase which by the way was only a training camp for Ohio volunteer army soldiers, a parole camp, a muster outpost, and later a prisoner-of-war camp for Confederates and civilians suspected of actively supporting secession and now a cemetery that does annually hold a ceremony to commemorate the Confederate soldiers who had been held and died there. Guess The Hilltop Historical Society better stop placing those Confederate flags on the graves every year!

Next we will redact our history books as we all shouldn’t be reminded of the evil things that we as Americans have done in our past. So it’s ok to protest today with hateful pointless violence and killing activities that we as a civilized society continue today all in the name of claiming that indicators of our evil history should be erased.

In my long years and many places that I have visited, some very horrific, I many times questioned why we memorialized such tragic events in our history. Each time I was pointed to the following saying:

        ’Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.’ – George Santayana

So today when I look at a monument especially the many in the south I don’t see a monument of hate, I look at the history behind the person or moment in history being memorialized, I look, I learn and realize that for every bad, evil, embarrassing moments in our history there has always been good, growth, and triumphs associated with it. We as a nation, as a country, as a melting pot of people, would not be where we are today if not for the combination of the both. I by no means say this is a favorable model but we has human beings have struggled and will continue to struggle with good and evil.

In an age where our entire history is available in the palm of our hand and current events is shared in a fraction of a second, perhaps we can take a minute or two and use our smartphone to snap a picture of that monument and read the history behind that memorialization instead of snapping a picture of it’s destruction and the hate and violence that went with the process. At least the monument for the decades it’s been there didn’t hurt anyone; it only stirred up feelings that perhaps could have been better guided if the history behind it was understood CLEARLY first and realize the monument is merely referencing a point in time in history and not a point in time of the present.

Monument:

  • a statue, building, or other structure erected to commemorate a famous or notable person or event.
  • a statue or other structure placed by or over a grave in memory of the dead.
  • a building, structure, or site that is of historical importance or interest.

In my research I came across this article with interest: http://thefederalist.com/2017/02/20/erasing-history-makes-us-likely-repeat-mistakes/

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