What was Traditional America? That depends on whose glasses you have on.
With the reelection of President Barack Obama, you have probably heard – and may even be perpetuating – all manner of doomsday predictions. There’s Jeffrey Kuhner of theWashington Times likening President Obama to Vladimir Lenin. Buster Wilson from the hate group American Family Association cannot help but lament that America will be cursed and punished by “God.” Children who’ve learned racial slurs from their bigoted parents are falling from the trees. And every ultra-conservative from Kuhner to Perkins is calling the beginning of the end of “Traditional America.”
My own opinion of the death of Traditional America is GOOD RIDDANCE!
What was Traditional America? That depends on whose glasses you have on.
Some people see Traditional America as a bastion of capitalism, where Christian values directed everything, and success was reserved for those who worked the hardest. But some others see Traditional America as a place where making money justifies exploitation, where the religious beliefs of a few are forced upon the massess, and where the color of ones skin determines the content of ones wallet.
The way I see it, today’s America is one in which Americans have rejected hate. Americans have rejected religious intolerance. Americans want to reward scholarship and hard work no matter what color you are.
I want America to shed the traditional definition of success for a new, definition. In post-2012 America, a person can find a way to earn an education even if his or her parents cannot afford it. In post-2012 America, A person’s race or religion won’t determine his or her fitness for public office. In post-2012 America, a person can start a business, become a wild success, make millions of dollars, and – not expecting special treatment – will contribute the same share of income to tax as those less affluent. In post-2012 America, private health care decisions won’t be restricted by the religious preferences of faceless bureaucrats. In post-2012 America, two consenting adults in love can marry each other and enjoy the full benefits of marriage, because other people’s opinion of their love won’t matter.
There were good things and bad things about Traditional America. Let’s slough away the bad things; and replace them with something better.
Tuesday, November 6th, 2012 was a good start.
Turn on your television or listen to the radio and you are bound to hear some politician or political figure railing against President Obama for his recent affirmation that he favors allowing gay marriage. (Apparently, Evangelicals and Catholics are outraged.) Conservative radio hosts and provincial ministers are threatening their followers with the destruction of American society. And good old Mittens is warning everyone that Obama has a radical social agenda.
On the other hand, extreme conservatives warn that Mitt Romney would champion radical social changes.
It’s a vicious circle of accusations; but are they even relevant? If you really consider the major accomplishments and movements of the past 100 years, the United States of America has seen its share of radical progress. Arguably, the last 50 years have brought NOTHING BUT radical social changes.
penicillin, space travel, civil rights, women’s rights, economic rise of the middle class, the wane of papal and religious influence, the Vietnam War, fall of the Soviet Union*, the War on Drugs**, the information age…
Our nation has thrived and grown through so many changes. And, I argue, our republic is the better for it. You can decide for yourself whether this “radical change” phenomenon is new or not. In my humble opinion, it is anything but.
*You may question why the fall of the USSR is on this list. The fall of the Soviet Union had great influence on American political life. McCarthyism, the Cold War, demolition of the Berlin Wall, all of these events had great influence on society.
**The War on Drugs continues today and is the primary reason over 40 percent of the incarcerated population in the United States is African-American males. Because of the war on drugs, the United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world. Not even Russia or China imprisons more of it citizens than we do. Free country my ass.
What would checks and balances be if the President looked to Congress to guide all executive decisions? Nonexistent, that’s what they’d be.
I came across the article below on my Facebook feed the other day with the comment, “And why do we like this guy?”
The post link to an article in Hot Air
that portrays Obama as a Constitution-trodding swindler of sorts, accusing him of “bypassing” Congress by “waiving” this statutory restriction.
The language of the Palestinian Accountability Act could not be clearer: “[N]o funds available to any United States Government department or agency … may be obligated or expended with respect to providing funds to the Palestinian Authority.” Obama literally waived that statutory language off yesterday afternoon.
The right-winger goes on to blame Palestine’s failure to implement the Road Map for Peace
, while they conveniently leave out the fact that Israel has not implemented the plan either. Posters to this link tried to play the Congress-as-the-President’s-councilors card, but that dog don’t hunt. What would checks and balances be if the President looked to Congress to guide all executive decisions? Nonexistent, that’s what they’d be.
The President did not bypass Congress. On the contrary, he followed the letter of the law that Congress passed. Below, the text of said law.
Sec. 7040. (a) Prohibition of Funds.–None of the funds appropriated by this Act to carry out the provisions of chapter 4 of part II of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 may be obligated or expended with respect to providing funds to the Palestinian Authority.
(b) Waiver.–The <<NOTE: President. Certification.>> prohibition included in subsection (a) shall not apply if the President certifies in writing to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the President pro tempore of the Senate, and the Committees on Appropriations that waiving such prohibition is important to the national security interests of the United States.
There’s more in there about reports to Committee and Palestine meeting their obligations with regard to the Road Map, but I won’t bore you with them, you can read them for yourself
if you’re having trouble sleeping.
So, the President wrote a memo
to the aforementioned representatives.
“I hereby certify that it is important to the national security interests of the United States to waive the provisions of section 7040(a) of the Act, in order to provide funds appropriated to carry out Chapter 4 of Part II of the Foreign Assistance Act, as amended, to the Palestinian Authority.”
No bypass, no unprecedented usurpation of Congressional power, no “triple play.” And frankly, you and I don’t have the clearance to know the relevant “national security” details because we don’t have a ‘need to know’.
The simple fact is, the right-wing will be anti-Palestine as long is it is politically advantageous to be such. The moral of the story is, if you don’t want the President to have the power to do something, don’t give it to him.
I’ll be happy one day if I can truly say that my children are judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. And I’m afraid I won’t live to see it.
I’ll be happy one day if I can truly say that my children are judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. But I think that day is a long way off. And I’m afraid I won’t live to see it.
Thursday, Southern Mississippi University made headlines. Not for their season-ending loss to the basketball powerhouse Kansas; but for the racist and very offensive chanting of some of their band members during that loss. These students – who were attending the game as representatives of Southern Mississippi University – felt they were entitled to chant “where’s your green card” at Mr. Angel Rodriguez as he was taking some free throws during the first half.
The school acted swiftly and precisely. The punishment was almost exactly what I would have done. The students have been stripped of their scholarships, are out of the pep band, and have to undergo sensitivity training. I must credit Southern Miss’ school officials for their swift reproach of these students’ behavior.
In the face of anti-immigrant harassment (misdirected as it might have been to Puerto Rican Rodriguez), voter identification laws (that disproportionately affect minorities), and questionable immigration reforms in the south, the growing tree of evidence of a reversal of racial equality and cultural tolerance in America is virtually undeniable. In this supposedly “post racial” America, what does this say about the state of race relations in this country?
Up until a few days ago, one could purchase bumper stickers referring to the President of the United States as a nigger. Of course, the purveyor of this despicable product, Paula Smith, denies all racist connotation. She claims that the President isn’t even black. She also claims that putting one of the most offensive, racially-motivated words in the English language on a bumper sticker referring to our black President is not racist. Yeah. Right.
So many people have jumped on the [non] racist, anti-Obama band wagon the last year. The fact is, much of the opposition to Obama’s presidency from its very inception has been motivated by Barack Obama’s race. We’ve heard him referred to as the “food stamp president”, we’ve heard accusations of Obama “chugging 40s” instead of doing his job, he’s criticized for “entertaining rappers,” he’s derided as having a “hip-hop BBQ” at the White House. It seems no matter what President Barack Obama does – and he does just about the same things that previous presidents did (except play a mean game of basketball) – pundits who don’t like him routinely stage their disapproval in race-tinged cultural terms. And racist sewage circles the internet drain in chain emails that even pop up out of the offices of the judicial branch.
If it’s not racism, what is it? These people like O’Reilly, Beck and Boortz know exactly what they are doing. They are well versed by now in the art of the covert racial message. One would be remiss to claim that their euphemisms are not carefully crafted and their responses – if they offer any acknowledgement whatsoever of their slander – to the predictable fallout are not premeditated. These mass double entendre serve as a call to arms – fuel for the fire for their political lynching of a honorable man.