During his press conference with Kenya’s President Kenyatta, Barack Obama mentioned that he didn’t meddle with travel advisories. This was an uncomfortable topic, occasioned by our State Department’s warnings about terrorist activity from Al-Qaeda and Al-Shabaab in the African nation. Regardless of the lost tourist revenue, in the eyes of the Kenyan people Obama made good, but they only heard his side of the story.
Here’s a great suggestion for any fast-talking conservative who wants to lead this country with a new-fangled vision for America. Instead of wasting your media dollars and our time rambling on about a “new day,”1 “telling it like it is,”2 “a New American Century,”3 going from “hope to higher ground,”4 or scoring a victory against the “Washington machine,”5 try offering us something we haven’t heard before. Try being honest, not campaign-trail Republican honest, even if it means taking a risk.
While Obama boasts reducing the number of federal prisoners,1 lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are showing signs that they aren’t done with mandatory minimum laws just yet. It doesn’t matter whether we slap mandatory penalties on guns, drugs, or failing to pick up after your dog. The result will be the same: charges that justice is not color blind.
Two children died on the streets of Chicago while the Congressional Black Caucus celebrated the removal of a historic relic in South Carolina. 1 As reported by the Chicago Tribune,2 Dillan Harris was sitting in his stroller when he was run over by a car escaping a shooting. The other child, seven-year-old Amari Brown, was shot dead. That’s what being one of Chicago’s vulnerable children is all about. It doesn’t have anything to do with the window dressing we hear about in the news like flags or bad cops or failing schools. It has to do with getting killed with no end to the killing in sight despite endless words about stopping inner city violence.
Trying to connect the dots between housing, equality, and success in a way that makes sense is quite a stretch, even for Barack Obama. Our incomes are not secured by our equal protection rights. Neither are our houses, though they had a lot to do with the bad mortgages for unaffordable dreams that helped cause the president’s Great Recession. Owning a McMansion can be a sign of success. It can also be a sign of doing something foolish and irresponsible.
How angry should we be with members of the House and Senate who don’t apologize to the American people now that San Francisco’s sanctuary city status is suddenly new news because of a murder? Public decision makers will frame what happened as a problem caused by the failure to pass sweeping immigration reform legislation. They will ignore the fact that efforts to clamp down on big city refusals to enforce federal law have been rejected for years, with predictable consequences. They will do nothing to fix the problem.
No presidential candidate will claim that America isn’t great. That kind of heresy would be political suicide. No matter what party they have pledged allegiance to, anyone running for our nation’s highest office will proudly proclaim that America is great and always has been. Then they will tell you how we can make it better because while our nation has a history of greatness, the problem is we still aren’t good enough. That’s where political ambition comes in.
Should you trust the financial advisor calling your retirement planning shots or the political hacks who insist that you are a victim being taken for a ride? If protecting your hard-earned money from greedy financial planners is your goal, the Federal Government seems like an unlikely guardian. It hasn’t done a very good job safeguarding the nation’s finances. That won’t stop a pre-election effort to further demonize Wall Street in the name of protecting your retirement investments.
Republicans have a problem. A big problem. When government that is supposed to rule by the people, for the people gives the people what they want, how can the party say no?
Thank heavens we have a flag to draw the nation’s ire. A flag can’t be racist, but its symbolism can certainly be construed as offensive. This is a good thing at the moment for anyone who needs to convince themselves that we can make things right by discarding the Confederate flag. When we are finished the country can move forward by continuing to embrace the racist symbols that do the most harm.
If you want to know who will lead America and who has an agenda, note the reaction of Hillary Clinton to what happened in Charleston (see: Church Tragedy Will Be Dishonored by Politics). She twisted the situation to push her agenda forward and to stir up divisiveness. Her opponent Bernie Sanders took a similar approach, talking of racism and civil rights.1 Real leaders don’t act like that. Suffering and loss should not be turned into opportunities for exploitation.