When Darkness Falls

It’s no longer dog whistles & innuendos. America, the beacon of hope and freedom for the world’s oppressed, has officially dimmed her light



Maybe it’s Evolution

All of my grandparents immigrated here from Europe. European Jews who fled their homelands in the face of rising nationalism. Crossed the ocean with little more than a dream of a freer and more open society. My father in turn was raised mostly in foster homes. Passed around from family to family. Valued more for the monthly check he’d bring in than for his intellect or kindness.

To turn away refugees and treat them as greater threats than the head of our National Security Agency. To tear an innocent child away from a parent. To lose them in the system as if their worth is equal to that of a UPS parcel. As a father to two small girls my thoughts immediately turn to them. The possibility that they may ever experience such pain. It wrecks me.

How can it be that not everyone feels the same. How can this be a political issue? How can Republicans stay silent in the face of these horrors that are taking place within shores?

It comes down to empathy. The contrast between parties; whether in response to immigration, preemptive war, healthcare, mass shootings can only be explained by empathy. The GOP respond with a “that would never be my child” attitude. Extend their thoughts and prayers. Mourn the national tragedy, the innocent civilians, the fallen soldier, the lost children, and then move on to he next day.

Progressives react with a “what if that was my child!” response. They express outrage, demand #GunContolNow, exhaust diplomacy, protest the wars, wonder where are the children, and then spend thousands of sleepless nights worrying “what if tomorrow…”

Never Forget

Prior to the ascension of Donald Trump I had never used social media as a platform, felt compelled to write a blog, but consider me an alarmist. I believe we all have a responsibility to speak out. The only thing I ever learned in Hebrew school was “never forget,” and I haven’t.

All of America is faced with a simple choice, it’s either #Resistance or #Appeasement.

America has a long history of standing up to bullies and Nazis. The vast majority of us teach our children that name calling and excluding other kids on basis of race, gender or religion is not okay. We take pride in the melting pot that is America. Recognize that diversity IS the American identity. We can’t change that anymore than a tiger its stripes. A list of all the great contributions immigrants, minorities and refugees have made to this country would dwarf a list of their misdeeds a million times over. Americans are waking. We know who we are. And we like it that way.

This is not about politics. Look at Trump’s words. Log into twitter and review his timeline of tweets. It is repulsive. You’d be ashamed of your child if that was the method they used to become class president. He is a man of flawed character. He does not share OUR values and we must stand up together and punch him in the nose.

I urge all in #GOP, including the so called “moderates” who serve this administration, to declare yourself an independent, a freedom fighter or whatever heroic name you wish to give yourselves. Find the courage within you. Make clear to our Comrade in Chief that you stand for the people and the constitution and he will have trouble if he messes with either.

This madness has gone on long enough. It’s time to cut commercial and bring the adults back into the room. We can no longer afford to play Russian roulette with our democracy #HistoryHasItsEyesOnYou

Why drain the swamp if you’re going to replace it with it a cesspool?

Flynn’s loyalty towards Russia wasn’t a surprise to anyone; not Donald Trump, not his jolly sidekick Preacher Pence, not our Congress, not even the American public. If you honestly believe Flynn was forced to hand in his resignation because he misled VP Pence then I need you to know that I’m a Private Investigator handling the estate of your Great Uncle. He was a widowed Nigerian Prince with no heirs and a large inheritance. If you will just overnight me a money order I’ll wire transfer it right over to you.Seriously, if Pence was misled it’s ‘s only because he wished to be. It’s called willful ignorance or plausible deniability.

Here’s what was widely known about Flynn before he was offered the opportunity to lead our National Security Agency. In 2012 he was fired from his job as head of Defense Intelligence Agency by then POTUS Obama. Scuttlebutt is he was a terrible manager who left chaos in his wake. He went on to become a Trump surrogate and twitter conspiracy theorist. Leading chants of “lock her up” in what is described by former colleagues as unusual behavior. As recently as 2015 Flynn was a paid contributor by Russia’s state broadcaster, Russia Today, for appearing on its air. In December of that year he attended a Moscow dinner and sat as a guest of honor next to Puppetmaster Putin himself. I could go into his relations with Erdogan or quote his Islamaphobic opinions but you get the picture.

Does that sounds like an ideal candidate to you? Like someone a CEO President, whose number one priority is keeping this nation safe, would select to fill one of the most critical roles in our collective security? Flynn raised so many red flags he may as well have had a sickle and hammer tattooed into his forehead. It is one thing to be qualified for a job and a whole other thing to be fit for it.

If a refugee applied for entry into this country and their application was dependent on alternative facts, slogan and propaganda we’d send him straight to Guantanamo! We certainly would not hand him the keys to the Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall White House and access to our nation’s most sensitive secrets. That is not normal.

So I’m going to suggest something a little radical. Why don’t all of us, Democrat, Republican and Independent start holding our leaders accountable. Let’s start by demanding they conduct “routine vetting” of each and every Cabinet nominee, judicial appointee, and White House advisor from this day forward.

Heck our so called President should sign an EO tomorrow insisting upon it. After all our national security is his number one priority!

By Now…

By now we should know better than to fight it. To scream out the answers that will go unheard. That will be met with thoughts and prayers by our elected leaders. To demand sensible gun control and comprehensive reform. To highlight the fallacy of absolutist of the Second Amendment, the analogies to traffic laws, the hypocrisy of pro-lifers.

By now we should know to temper our expectations. Realize that it is naive to think the slaughter of our children will awaken our elected leaders from their slumber. Foolish to hope it will remind them that their responsibility is to serve and protect “we, the people,” not the monied interests of corporations and NRA lobbyists. Understand that it will always be “too soon.” That thoughts and prayers is all they will ever offer.

By now you’d think we’d have grow immune to the pain. Indifferent to the sorrow the friends and families of the victims must feel. Hardened to the feelings of empathy that awash me as parents reunite with their kids; devastated for the ones who never will.

By now you would think we’d cease correcting the reporters each time they referred to the disturbed gunman. Each report in which they refused to brand the latest act of domestic terrorism as such. Failed to identify the undeniable trend among the perpetrators. To ask the obvious, “where were they radicalized?”

By now we know that’s the plan. To normalize these school shootings to such a degree that we accept them as inevitable. That we embrace our gun control culture and seek alternative avenues to solve the issue. Ignore the weapons and no abandon efforts at prevention in favor of those that mitigate damage instead. Redesign our schoolyards to more closely resemble a single entrance prison yard. Arm our teachers and security officers to better control threats and behavior. Relax our rights of privacy to allow for profiling and stop and frisk of whatever suspicious group du jour. Enhance communications to allow for quicker response times among emergency responders.

By now we know that this fight is too important. Have come to understand that they may want us to perceive that this fight is unwinnable, that it requires compromise, but the reality tells us otherwise.

By now we’ve seen sensible gun control efforts work in civilized and “free” societies throughout the globe. We’ve seen the near elimination of domestic mass shootings in countries that once faced similar violence. We’ve seen the various extreme ways common sense reform may work, from the near elimination of individual gun ownership in Australia to the tightly regulated but right to bear arms efforts in Japan.

By now we should know that it’s only a matter of a time. That you can’t stop progress. That the future has arrived and we must follow its lead of the children who have grown tired of our inaction. Who have seen the errors of our ways. Who have grown tired of reaching for the tissues, hiding in the corners, mourning their friends and waiting for the right time. Who are reaching the age of majority and marching for OUR lives. Who are ready and able to engage directly; committed to vote, to ask the relevant questions, to demand the necessary action of our leaders.

By now we should take solace and courage in the knowledge that we are the majority. That when harnessed the power of the people should never be underestimated. That we have the power to end this cycle, protect future generations, and enact common sense gun control.