If you haven’t guessed by now, I’m not a fan of elephants (Republicans) nor asses (Democrats). The latest rhetoric is… NUTS!!
With all the anti-refugee sentiment being spouted all around us, all of the hatred being spewed by folks; I think we should take a minute and relax. Here is an interlude article with some connection…
What would have happened to the Jewish refugees during WWII if no one helped, oh wait, yeah..no country really bent over backwards did they, how did that work out? While the politicians stood idle and refused to publicly take a stand, things did happen. Take Martha & Waitstill Sharp from Massachusetts. Waitstill was a minister in the Unitarian church. Shortly after Chamberlain’s Proclamation of “Peace in Our Time” and the signing of the Munich Pact. The American Unitarian Association (AUA) passed a resolution to explore relief enterprises for Czechoslovakian refugees. Together, they saved countless families and children that would have otherwise perished in Hitler’s ovens. Martha & Waitstill Sharp are among 25,000 “Righteous Among the Nations” who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust. I encourage you to read their story or watch their story on PBS.
Are we well rested? Good, because I have some pent up ranting to do….
America, for better or worse, is still that “shining city on a hill” to millions across the globe. Wouldn’t it be nice if “WE THE PEOPLE” could live up to our own hype? We the People. With this political season we have set the bar low, so very low. We have a man who thinks only of himself, and a woman who belongs in jail. This is the best that “WE THE PEOPLE” can put forward? We should be ashamed of ourselves. We have made a beeline to the bottom. Are these the only two people who are running? No, there are other choices, and I think instead of voting your party ticket, you should engage that gray matter between your ears and ask yourself this ONE question: Do I want this person running MY country? If the answer is NO, then move on to the next candidate and ask the same question. There are actually quite a number of people running for president of this great land; but only three parties are on all 50 state’s ballots (Green party is not on all 50).
- Libertarian Party (Johnson/Wells): Both successful two term Republican governors.
- Republican Party (Trump/Pence): Trump: He’s the best, just ask him. Pence: successful governor and congressman.
- Democratic Party (Clinton/Kaine): Clinton: First Lady, political activist, Sec. of State and NY Senator. Kaine: Former Virginia governor, VA Lt Governor, VA senator, Richmond Mayor & former head of the DNC.
Maybe I’ll vote for the Princess. Living proof that almost anyone can run for the leader of this great land.
Just how do the Syrian refugees fit into our city on a hill? They are refugees, they are fleeing from prosecution; much like a large segment of the population that originally came to and settled in this great land, should we turn them away? I, in good conscience cannot. I agree that our nation cannot absorb all 4.8 million (most recent # of registered Syrian refugees), Some quick numbers:
Country (population in millions):
Europe (508): They have taken in roughly 1.3 million refugees. About 1/2 million in Germany, 800K spread between the UK, France, Italy, Hungary, Sweden, Austria, & Belgium. The last 1/2 million being spread among the remaining EU countries. They have taken in roughly 0.25% of the EU’s population.
Turkey (74): 2.6 million refugees. They have taken in roughly 3.5% of their population
Lebanon (4): 1 million refugees, one out of every 4 people in Lebanon is a refugee. They have accepted nearly 25% of their population.
Jordan (6): 600K (official) and roughly 1.4 million uncounted refugees. Jordan has accepted between 10% – 23% of their population, depends which number you use.
Iraq (33): 245K refugees. Iraq has accepted around 0.7% of their population. And they (the Iraqis) have some serious issues.
Egypt (82): 118K refugees. Egypt has accepted a token 0.14% of their population.
United States (318): 10K will be taken in this year, followed by roughly 75K each year for the next three years, total of 235K. Our pledge is for 0.08% of our population. As of June 30th we’ve accepted > 5000 refugees.
Quick note, Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple was the son of a Syrian refugee.
I believe the “Syrian crisis” will have a profound affect on America’s immigration policy, in a good way. Our immigration system is due for an overhaul, and this just may be the catalyst to get it done. Currently it takes upwards of several years (it took the bosslady 6 years). According the the American Immigration Center, it doesn’t take long; however, I know a lot of people where the process has taken > five years. Based upon my personal observations and the statements made on the American Immigration Center website, I’d venture to say that the way to streamline the process is on the administrative side. If we can fix this administrative abortion we call an immigration policy; then maybe more people would like to immigrate legally to our shinning city, vice illegally.
Is there a possibility that not all the immigrants will be coming here for better lives, but be coming here to destroy us? Sure, I bet there will be. But I’m willing to take the chance that the great majority are searching for their city on the hill, and will become productive citizens of this great land. Heck, maybe one will even have a son, a son like Steve. Are we willing to through away that kind of talent because of our fear? I’m not. I say that if they have the heart, and the will to get here; let’s great them with open arms (after being screened).
I hope you’ll forgive my ramblings, I only have one more thing to share: the Asshole(s) of the month (I’m predating this) for November are the Republican Party and the Democratic Party.
I have some favorites lines from Reagan’s Farewell to the Nation I’d like to share:
- An informed patriotism is what we want.
- So, we’ve got to teach history based not on what’s in fashion but what’s important — why the Pilgrims came here, who Jimmy Doolittle was, and what those 30 seconds over Tokyo meant…I’m warning of an eradication of the American memory that could result, ultimately, in an erosion of the American spirit.
- Let’s start with some basics: more attention to American history and a greater emphasis on civic ritual.
- I’ve spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don’t know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That’s how I saw it, and see it still.
- After 200 years, two centuries, she still stands strong and true on the granite ridge, and her glow has held steady no matter what storm. And she’s still a beacon, still a magnet for all who must have freedom, for all the pilgrims from all the lost places who are hurtling through the darkness, toward home.
- And let me offer lesson number one about America: All great change in America begins at the dinner table. So, tomorrow night in the kitchen I hope the talking begins. And children, if your parents haven’t been teaching you what it means to be an American, let ’em know and nail ’em on it. That would be a very American thing to do.
- …the image that comes to mind like a refrain is a nautical one — a small story about a big ship, and a refugee, and a sailor. It was back in the early eighties, at the height of the boat people. And the sailor was hard at work on the carrier [USS] Midway, which was patrolling the South China Sea. The sailor, like most American servicemen, was young, smart, and fiercely observant. The crew spied on the horizon a leaky little boat. And crammed inside were refugees from Indochina hoping to get to America. The Midway sent a small launch to bring them to the ship and safety. As the refugees made their way through the choppy seas, one spied the sailor on deck, and stood up, and called out to him. He yelled, ‘Hello, American sailor. Hello, freedom man.’ A small moment with a big meaning, a moment the sailor, who wrote it in a letter, couldn’t get out of his mind. And, when I saw it, neither could I. Because that’s what it was to be an American…
We the People can and should live up to our hype. Do we have inequalities, yes; should we work to remove these inequities, yes. We should be working in a civil manner, much more along the lines of how Dr. M. L. King worked his magic. Civil disobedience is acceptable (and encouraged), provided no harm is done to others. This is where I’m getting off the bus with the current disobedience being conducted by people who are outraged over the recent shootings and such.
America belongs to we, the people of this great land. American doesn’t belong to one group more than another. America belongs equally to each citizen, in an equal share. You’re right to protest does not trump my expectation of safety and security.