Saturday, January 30, 2010

A new stamp honoring Mother Theresa

There is much ado about nothing these days at the United States Postal Service. It seems that there is a plan underway to produce a stamp honoring the aforementioned.

Mother Theresa, while a saint and a religious person - is along the likes of Gandhi and Dr. King - a humanitarian and philanthropist - one who spent her life ensuring that others were uplifted and did not suffer needlessly whenever she was able to.

I cannot emphasize strongly enough that I am a staunch advocate of the ACLU, but this case is a no-brainer.

This is not a case of separation of church and state and we are not sliding down a slippery slope - there are many religious people, atheists and non believers who admire Mother Theresa for the life she lived and her efforts to end suffering.

Methinks that sometimes, groups protest too loudly - just for the sake of protesting - this is one of those times.

Miranda rights for all?

I was saddened to read lately of the December 25th Northwest flight alleged terrorist and the subsequent events surrounding his arrest and questioning. It seems his Miranda rights were violated. He had initially been "cooperating" with authorities, but the Obama administration has stepped in according to reports to ensure that his rights have not been violated.

Terrorists are a despicable sort and I do not support or advocate terrorism in any way, shape or form. I could not condone same, based on having lived under the IRA and RAF and their terrorism attacks during the 80's in Europe. I know firsthand of the fear that comes from living under the cloud of waiting for the next bomb blast.

I am, however deeply concerned that there are those who believe that terrorists do not deserve the same fundamental rights that we Americans are entitled to. If they are being held to our legal code, then it follows that the same rights be afforded them as well.

We should never assume to think that even the most cowardly act of terrorism is a justification for abusing or denying a person their basic civil rights as guaranteed by our constitution. In the America I know and love, we give equal rights to all.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Hardball's Chris Matthews opens mouth and inserts both feet

Chris Matthews has been a long-admired news reporter of mine. His ability to distill important and complex political issues are among the reasons I so like him.

Unfortunately, Mr. Matthews recently committed a faux pas - apparently while reporting on the President's first State of the Union address, Mr. Matthews maintains that he "forgot that the President is black.....for one hour." - I recall having the parents of a former beau saying that about me - he recounted the story and was proud of his parents for "accepting" me - I remember being mortified, even at the tender age of seventeen.

Chris has some learning to do - this could become - as well it should - a PR debacle for the host of the remarkable "Hardball with Chris Matthews" on MSNBC. He should definitely apologize - I would like to think that he was not willfully intending to offend millions of black Americans - I would like to think that he merely misspoke, but there is something deeper afoot here. As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he - Chris is a master of the English language - he commands it so very well each weekday evening whilst interviewing all types of people from Presidents, heads of state to the average American - all in the hopes of sharing his left-leaning point of view with the American people.

It is my hope that Chris Matthews and others who think like him vis a vis the race issue - he should know better and I hope for a speedy remedy to this PR debacle.

Think before you speak, Chris - Just a word to the wise - or not so wise, in this case.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Happy New Year - albeit a titch late - and Happy State of the Union

Folks, we are in dire straits. One in ten Americans is unemployed. That figure does not count those such as myself who have given up seeking full time employment and are cobbling together with savings, other income sources and part time employment sans benefits.

We are spending billions on wars that we can not afford to wage, either spiritually, financially or emotionally - our military veterans are worn out - plain and simple.

The American people are frustrated - angry even - at the state of their Union. They want their jobs back, they are tired of losing their homes - the President spoke of the letters that tug at his heartstrings last evening during the State of the Union - they come from children who don't understand why they have to leave their homes, or why their parents can't go to work anymore. Harsh realities for children to face. In another blog, I shared earlier that I have a son who is unemployed. He is depressed, understandably so - he lives in the state of Michigan - one of the highest rates of unemployment in the nation - he is only 21 and does not understand the cruelties of life, but he is getting a crash course. I call him daily to pep him up and give him ideas and solutions for getting more financial aid to go to school full time instead of trying to work and go to school full time - maybe that is his silver lining. Unlike his father and I, he won't have to work and support a family and go to school - his lot is somewhat easier.

The President has some grand plans for small businesses - the lifeblood of the country - he wants to reign in banks and their exhorbitant powers. He ought to reign (read - fire)in Tim Geithner and Hank Paulson while he is at it - I do not trust these men who were brought in to help their "friends and associates" at AIG and Sachs - to do what is in the best interest of the American People.

The same is true of the speaker of the house, Nancy Pelosi who recently took a delegation to Denmark: at a cost of some 170,000 for three military jets, not to mention the hotel costs and meals provided to not just senators but their families as well - is this prudent spending in the times in which we live? Was this excess the sort of thing that Democrats used to rail against and shun as if it were the plague?