Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN


May 6, 2014

We the People: Fear and Loathing

CROSSVILLE — “This country is headed in the wrong direction.” We hear this frequently these days. To some it means returning to a former period of time in this country’s history when white men ruled. The same might be said about the U.S. House of Representatives and, to some extent, the U.S. Senate.

For instance, Senator Alexander is worried that the “Paycheck Fairness Act,” if passed, might result in the fact that women will be paid MORE than a man. Heaven forbid that a man might suffer the same discrimination women have suffered in the workplace throughout their working lives. Women have surpassed their male counterparts in education and skill development in many areas and should be paid more than many of their male counterparts. The bill failed in the Senate. The old white guys continue to rule.

Republican dominated state legislatures have, over the past few years, continued to enact laws to prevent women from seeking abortions. They refuse to consider the consequences of sending women back to the alleys of the 1950s. This is already happening in Texas, one of the most repressive states in the country when it comes to upholding the reproductive rights of women.

The men who cause pregnancies continue to escape responsibility for their actions. Congress continues to cut programs that help poor and middle class women rear the children they bear. Many Republican women legislators thoughtlessly promote the ideas they are fed by their male counterparts. These are women who can afford to do what they need to do to protect themselves. Considering the number of abortions that married women have had over the years since Roe (and before), would we be surprised to find that some of the most outspoken women against abortion in politics have had one at sometime in their lives?

“What would our Founding Fathers do?” is the battle cry of those most concerned with their Second Amendment rights to bear arms. Meantime, constitutional rights to privacy and the right to vote are crumbling in many states.

Thus, states with Republican dominated legislatures are enacting “gun rights” laws while refusing the needed Medicaid funds to take care of poor “gun rights” victims. Guns in schools, guns in parks, guns everywhere because “the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.” We are, in some places, rapidly returning to those wild west days when “drawing down” on the person who offended you was the way to settled your disputes. We have seen, lately, that you can be killed for texting your babysitter or for not doing a job you were hired to do.

“We are headed in the wrong direction.” Think about what the words really mean the next time you say them. Does it matter to you that in some really important areas of life we have fallen far below many developing countries in our ranking? We are only “Number 1” in the world, anymore, in having the largest military. If you don’t want to live in a country where fear and the repression of women, the poor, and the middle class is the norm, then you need to help change our direction.


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    July 28, 2014

  • Stumptalk: Governing before and after mass corruption

    Laws in America were originally written simply. Every citizen could read them quickly and understand their meaning. The founders wrote the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, the Northwest Ordinance and the Constitution of the United States, none of which was longer than 4,500 words.

    July 28, 2014

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    Charlie Hayden’s last recording session with his early partner, Keith Jarrett, was in 2007.  The songs they played were mostly melancholy.  The second album coming from that session includes Weil’s “My Ship” and Porter’s “Every Time We Say Goodbye.” The dark ballad “Goodbye,” by Gordon Jenkins, was the final track.

    July 22, 2014

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    The Gaza Strip, a small Palestinian territory about the size of Washington, D.C., has been in the news almost every day.  Its key location at the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea has attracted a number of occupying powers over the years, and it has  been at the center of much Middle East history.

    July 22, 2014

  • Tidbits: The excitement of election day

    On March 12, 1996, there were 427,183 votes cast in the presidential primary election. Among those votes was mine, the first vote I cast in an election, just two days after my 18th birthday.

    July 21, 2014

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    July 21, 2014

  • Lion and the Lamb: Children on the move

    The news this past week has focused on the humanitarian crisis developing on our southern border. Thousands of unaccompanied children from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras seeking to escape from the violence, human trafficking and extreme poverty in their countries have been entering the United States.

    July 15, 2014

  • We the People: Memo to gun rights groups

    The recent incident in California helps us understand why we cannot rely on mental health services alone to solve the problem of gun violence.

    July 15, 2014

  • Tidbits: Make the best of your road trip

    I didn’t care for road trips when I was young. It was so confining to have to sit in the back seat, staring out the window for hour after hour, hayfield after hayfield. And when you’re a kid, time doesn’t pass like it does when you get a little older. Just the trip from Jamestown, TN, to Crossville, roughly 30 miles, felt like an eternity!

    July 14, 2014

  • Stumptalk: Biased climate agenda will cost trillions

    For anyone who has been educated in the history of science and scientific method, this whole issue of “Global Warming” or “Climate Change” is an embarrassing and painful exercise.

    July 14, 2014

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