Cartoon Bully

Clay Jones of Claytoonz is more than just a cartoonist … he is also a sharp political analyst and his posts are often as astute as any of the OpEd columnists. The battle for the 2024 GOP nomination for president has already begun and from all indications, it will be a bloodbath with neither candidate qualified for the office, but heck … in this day, who cares about pesky little things like qualifications, right? Anyway, thank you, Clay, for putting pen to paper on this one!

claytoonz

Ron De Santis is a bully. Republicans LOVE bullies. It’s why they love Donald Trump so much. Republicans believe bullying people weaker than you is a sign of strength. It’s also why they love Putin. But, bullying is just like it was in school. The bullies are cowards. They only pick on whom they believe they can beat up.

Remember when Donald Trump tried to bully Nancy Pelosi? Remember him crawling up his own bunghole when they were in the same room together and then Pelosi walked out of the White House putting on her shades like a boss? Remember when Donald Trump shut down the government until Congress would fund his racist border wall? Remember when Pelosi kicked his ass so hard that he reopened the government and the great dealmaker walked away with less than he started with? Remember when he tried to bully Hillary Clinton at the…

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Filosofa’s Grumblings …

So much for that ‘poisoned pill’ that Twitter said would stop the clown, Elon Musk, from effecting a hostile takeover of the social media giant.  Around noon today, I received no less than five “breaking news” texts on my cell phone informing me that Twitter has agreed to allow Musk to proceed with his takeover for somewhere in the neighborhood of $44 billion.  The deal is expected to be completed sometime this year.  Now I have a dilemma.  I said last week that I will close down my Twitter account the day Elon Musk takes over Twitter.  I meant it then, and I still mean it.  However, I’ve also read a number of people who I respect saying that those of us who stand for truth & justice, for racial and income equality, for the LGBTQ community and more, should stay on Twitter and fight, continue to make our voices heard, continue to hassle, annoy, and generally be a pain in the arse of those who are bigoted and corrupt.

What are your thoughts on this?  Admittedly, it made me step back for a minute and think, and I still haven’t come to a firm conclusion.  Why would I shut down my account?  What would be gained?  My thoughts are that I would be making a statement, and that if enough of us leave Twitter, Elon Musk will rue the day he even thought about making such a purchase.  What would be gained?  I would have assuaged my own conscience, for I do not believe in supporting the wealthy in any way, shape, or form.  I would not hate myself for talking the talk but failing to walk the walk.  But what would be lost?  Communications with friends and people from all walks of life.  What else would be lost?  A layer of stress, an hour or so of my daily time. A venue for my blog posts – my voice.

Needless to say, I’m undecided as yet, and I likely have some time to ponder, since I understand that Musk, for all his wealth, doesn’t have immediate access to a measly $44 billion and will have to play some liquidation games in order to fund his latest circus act.  Remember my post from earlier this month,  where I calculated that over 26 million children could eat for a full year for what Musk is paying to buy yet another plaything for his bored mind?  This, my friends, is why I despise those with great wealth … if they helped people as much as they could, they would no longer have that wealth.  That they have millions or billions of dollars is an automatic tell that they do nothing to help either the planet or humankind.

I’ll let you all know when I decide which direction I plan to take, but right at this moment I’m inclined to say it just isn’t worth the aggravation and stress to remain on Twitter, which will be a private company owned and operated by a wealthy clown.  Let me know your thoughts …


Speaking of Twitter … I came across this on Sunday and it damn near brought a tear to my eyes.  I almost never share people’s tweets here on ye olde blog, but this one … I need to share it with you and I hope Ron DeSantis and his bunch of homophobic, racist boot-lickers have seen this at least 1,000 times!

“Gov DeSantis, when I was a little boy growing up in Florida I had to drink from the “colored ” fountain at the Volusia County Courthouse. The “white “water was cool but ours was warm. This made me feel bad. May I share this with students in Florida?”

Is this what the Republicans want to take this nation back to?  Sure as hell seems like it sometimes, doesn’t it?

They Are Not Just “Your” Kids!

A recent column by Frank Bruni brought to my attention something that … for whatever reason … had not occurred to me in this whole education “cultural war” anti-CRT, anti-LGBTQ school curriculum battle.  DAMMIT, Ron DeSantis and others who would deprive our children of an education … WE THE PEOPLE … all of us, even those of us who no longer or never did have school-age children, PAY for the schools AND we rely on the schools to turn out well-educated, well-rounded young people who can make this country — the world — a better place for us all!  DeSantis and the bigoted parents who do not want their children to learn that the U.S. is and has always been a racist nation, DeSantis and the homophobic parents who are scared shitless that little Johnny or Susie may eventually realize that … hey, it’s okay to be different …  DeSantis and those narrow-minded parents are ruining the future of this country, ensuring the next generation will repeat the mistakes of the last!!!

Whew … glad I got that off my chest.

But seriously … every working person in this nation pays taxes … taxes that go to pay teachers, to build, renovate and maintain school buildings, pay bus drivers and buy buses, desks, and other equipment.  Why should only parents and governors have a say in whether our children are educated or indoctrinated?  Parents:  Your children are my children’s future and the future of every person in the country!  For you to determine that they should be shielded from our past is to say that you want the racist, homophobic ideology that has often been prevalent in the U.S. to continue.  You say you don’t want your children to “feel guilty” over such issues as slavery and Jim Crow … well, I never felt guilty when I learned of these things as a child and later a teen, I just felt that I wanted to do better than past generations had done.  Isn’t that what we need?  Do you hate Blacks and Gay people so much that you want your children to grow up sharing your hatred?  Do you want to see hundreds more Black men murdered as George Floyd was in Minneapolis in 2020 because you were too ashamed to allow your children to learn the truth?

If a parent wishes their children to learn only the happy-happy-joy-joy parts of U.S. history, then they can either find a private school that shares their views, or they can homeschool their children, but the do NOT have the right to inflict their narrow-minded views on every child in the nation!  Parents who wish to teach Christianity or Islam or Judaism to their children have plenty of time off campus to do just that, but those parents do NOT have the right to cram it down the throats of children whose families believe differently or do not place the same level of importance on religion as they do.  There is a reason that the U.S. Supreme Court declared in 1962 that prayer in schools is unconstitutional … because not all of us believe the same, and that is our right, as well as the right of our children!

Ron DeSantis owes this nation an apology, for he has attempted to make the whims of a few into the law of the land.  And why?  Because he hopes to stir the pot enough to win the presidential election in 2024.  He would destroy our future for his own personal gain, just like another similar ‘man’ who was twice-impeached and voted out of office two years ago.  These, my friends, are not the sort of politicians we need in our government, for they pander to the few and disregard the majority.  They would turn this nation into ashes tomorrow if it gave them the ego-boost, the power they so crave.  DON’T LET THEM DO IT!!!  Protect our children, protect our nation, get rid of the clowns who care naught for either.

Michigan State Senator Mallory McMorrow, who few people outside of Michigan have ever heard of, defended herself after being accused by a colleague of supporting pedophilia, being a ‘groomer’, and more because she stood up for teaching children the truth, and for being open and allowing children to express themselves.  This clip is well worth the time spent to watch Ms. McMorrow’s rebuttal.

The future of the world, if the world is to have a future, depends on teaching today’s children to be better than we and our forbears were, teaching them to care for the earth and ALL its inhabitants!  Instead of banning books, we should be banning bigots like Florida’s Governor DeSantis and all those who agree with his hate-filled ideology.

The Face Of Our Future???

Yesterday, a reader posted the following video in a comment to my post, and as I watched the video I wondered … is Florida an outlier or is this the face of the future for voting rights in this nation?  Sadly, I think the latter may well be the case unless … UNLESS we all do our share by demanding that Congress pass federal voting rights legislation and vote those who refuse out of office in November!  At least 42 states at last count had either passed or were in the process of passing laws that would restrict our right to have a voice, even a tiny voice, in our government.  This is truly frightening, my friends … please do take a few minutes to watch the video.

UNCONSCIONABLE!!!

The Republicans have crossed that line in the sand, they have gone too far, and it’s high time to stop them, even if it requires emergency procedures that defy their “constitutional rights”.  They are costing us our lives and I for one am sick and damn tired of it!  Jamelle Bouie writing for the New York Times sums it up in his most recent column … guaranteed to make you growl and stomp your feet.


Do Republicans Actually Want the Pandemic to End?

Aug. 31, 2021

By Jamelle Bouie

Opinion Columnist

President Barack Obama promised unity. In his 2008 campaign, he said he would heal the nation’s political divides and end more than a decade of partisan rancor.

To keep this promise, Obama needed allies, or at least partners, in the Republican Party. But they said no. If they could block Obama — if they could withhold support on anything significant he planned to do — then they could make him break his promise. Republicans would obstruct and Obama would get the blame. Which, you might remember, is what happened. By the 2010 midterm elections, Obama was a divisive president.

Joe Biden, in his 2020 campaign for president, promised to get the coronavirus pandemic under control. With additional aid to working families and free distribution of multiple effective vaccines, he would lead the United States out of its ongoing public health crisis.

I think you can see where this is going.

Rather than work with him to vaccinate the country, Biden’s Republican opposition has, with only a few exceptions, done everything in its power to politicize the vaccine and make refusal to cooperate a test of partisan loyalty. The party is, for all practical purposes, pro-Covid. If it’s sincere, it is monstrous. And if it’s not, it is an unbelievably cynical and nihilistic strategy. Unfortunately for both Biden and the country, it appears to be working.

Naturally, some of the loudest vaccine-skeptical Republicans are in Congress. “Think about what those mechanisms could be used for,” Representative Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina said of the Biden administration’s plan for door-to-door vaccine ambassadors. “They could then go door-to-door to take your guns. They could go door-to-door to take your Bibles.”

Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia has similarly criticized the president’s effort to reach the unvaccinated. “People have a choice, they don’t need your medical brown shirts showing up at their door ordering vaccinations,” she tweeted. “You can’t force people to be part of the human experiment.”

Cawthorn and Greene are obviously fringe figures. But these days, the fringe is not far from the center of the Republican Party (if it ever was to begin with). Their rhetoric is not too different, in other words, from that of their more mainstream colleagues in the Senate.

Senator Ted Cruz of Texas has attacked vaccine mandates — “There should be no mandates, zero, concerning Covid,” he said in a recent interview with the Fox News host Sean Hannity — while Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has urged Americans to “resist” efforts to stop the spread of the virus. “It’s time for us to resist,” Paul said in a video posted to Twitter. “They can’t arrest all of us. They can’t keep all of your kids home from school. They can’t keep every government building closed, although I’ve got a long list of ones they might keep closed or ought to keep closed.”

Republican rhetoric in Washington, however, is a sideshow to the real fight over Covid, in states like Florida and Texas.

In Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis rejected vaccine passports and launched an aggressive campaign against mandatory mask-wearing in schools. “It is very important that we say, unequivocally, no to lockdowns, no to school closures, no to restrictions and no to mandates,” he told a gathering of conservative activists in Utah last month. DeSantis has suspended city and county emergency orders, put limits on future mitigation efforts and signed a law that “shields nursing homes, hospitals and businesses from legal liability if employees and patrons contract the virus on their premises.”

All of this, even as the state has been ravaged by the Delta variant of the virus. Florida has been reporting more than 20,000 new infections a day and has averaged 262 Covid deaths — the most of any state, at least in absolute numbers. More than 16,000 people are hospitalized and thousands have been taken to intensive care units. Who does DeSantis blame for these outcomes? Biden.

“You know, he said he was going to end Covid. He hasn’t done that,” the Florida governor told the Fox News host Jesse Watters last week. “At the end of the day, he is trying to find a way to distract from the failures of his presidency.”

In Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott has banned mask mandates, signed legislation that would deny state contracts or licenses to businesses that require proof of vaccination and — after recovering from a breakthrough Covid infection himself — barred local governments from requiring the vaccine for any public agency or private institution. In a statement, Abbott said that this was to avoid a “patchwork of vaccine mandates across Texas.” But in a message to the state legislature, the governor appeared to be asking lawmakers to consider an outright ban on vaccine mandates. On Aug. 25, the day Abbott sent his message, Texas reported more than 23,000 new cases of Covid, along with 14,000 hospitalizations and 245 deaths.

Abbott and DeSantis are not alone. Earlier this month, the Republican governor of Arizona, Doug Ducey, created two new grant programs that would give funds to families and school districts that rejected mask mandates. And in South Dakota, Gov. Kristi Noem once again cheered the Sturgis motorcycle rally, a year after it contributed to a Covid outbreak throughout the region and into the Midwest. This year, health officials have already linked the rally to cases in Minnesota, North Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

The effect of all of this for the country is a pandemic that won’t die. The effect of it for the Republican Party is a substantial part of its base that won’t take the vaccine. According to data collected by the Kaiser Family Foundation, Republicans lag behind most of the rest of the country in vaccine uptake; 54 percent said they had received at least one dose at the time of the survey, compared with 67 percent of all adults. And the effect of this for Biden is a sharp drop in his approval rating; a Reuters poll conducted mid-month found the president down 21 points among all Americans for his handling of the pandemic.

What amounts to a Republican effort to prolong the pandemic shows no sign of abating. It may even get worse, as powerful conservative media personalities spread vaccine skepticism and embrace dubious miracle cures like ivermectin, a drug typically used to treat parasitic worms in livestock, not viruses in humans.

If Biden does not want the kind of backlash that his Democratic predecessor faced, he needs to act aggressively to push the United States off its vaccination plateau. Republicans might be setting him up to break his promise to stop Covid, but the president should understand that he’s not actually at their mercy.

A Little Bit Rant-y

I’m in rather a rant-y mood this evening, so tell you what … I’ll share my angst with you, just in case your life was feeling a bit too peaceful at the moment.  No need to thank me.


Punish the truth-seekers

Jim Banks is a representative in the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.  Jim Banks is apparently not a very conscionable person, apparently has forgotten that Oath of Office he last took on January 3rd of this year.  He has served in the House since 2017, though for the life of me I cannot imagine why.

That’s congressman Banks above … looks like a real sharp one, yes?

Naturally Mr. Banks was one of many Republicans to contest the results of the 2020 election, even knowing that President Biden had won fairly and honestly, but it seems to be some sort of rite of initiation for those in the GOP to perpetuate the Big Lie and even put their integrity on the line to do so.  But it’s his latest transgression that has Filosofa growling.  Mr. Banks is urging his party to punish every lawmaker investigating the attempted coup at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th.  Punish them?  For doing their jobs?  For trying to find out how and why and by whom our democratic foundations were damn near overthrown???  What the hell planet spawned this dude?

“When we win back the majority next year, we have a duty as Republicans to hold every member of this committee accountable for this abuse of power, for stepping over the line, by preventing them from being in positions of authority. Take them off any committee, get them as far away from positions of power as you can because they’ve shown us that by threatening to do this that they abuse their power, wherever they are.”

I voted in November.  I voted for President Biden.  Many of you reading this voted for him also.  And this jackass is saying that our votes, our voices, our only representation in the government we fund should have been erased and that nobody should even try to figure out how, why, and by whom?  Indianans … you all really need to recall this clown before somebody does it for you!

Oh, and if you want the icing on the cake … the ignominious Tucker Carlson’s son works for Mr. Banks! Birds of a feather …


I have a right to kill my people!

Good ol’ Florida governor Ron DeSantis is back in the news.  On Friday, Florida Judge John Cooper ruled on a lawsuit brought by parents who say DeSantis overstepped his authority when his administration said school districts couldn’t order students to wear masks. DeSantis had warned that “there will be consequences” for districts that defied the ban.

Score one for sanity.  But wait … DeSantis is already threatening (“promising”) to appeal immediately, for he seems to believe that he is God, not the governor, and that as such, he has a right to condemn a large swath of his state to death.

Meanwhile, it looks as if Floridians are finally starting to see the light.  A Quinnipiac University poll released this month had DeSantis’ approval rating dipping below 50 percent, with 47 percent approving of his job performance, and 45 percent disapproving. Those numbers dropped to 44-51 when asked about his handling of public schools. The Quinnipiac poll follows other public polling that shows a similar erosion to DeSantis’ approval rating. A St. Pete Polls survey earlier this month showed 43 percent approved of the job he was doing while 48 percent did not.  And this is the man who was considering a run for president in 2024?  🤣 🤣 🤣

And then in other Florida news, with hospitals nearly full to capacity and 17,000 hospitalized with Covid, turns out the morgues are also filling up.

“The Central Florida Division of AdventHealth has reached capacity of our hospital morgues due to an influx of COVID-19 patients. We have begun utilizing rented, refrigerated coolers at 10 of our campuses throughout Orange, Osceola, Polk, Seminole, & Volusia counties. These coolers are quickly becoming filled also.”

All because one man has a god-complex and thinks that “he alone can fix this”.  Wonder where he got that ego?

Being a Jerk now a Prerequisite for Republican Presidential Nomination

Our friend Jeff has written the post I’ve been pondering, and done it far better than I could have. The Republican Party, the GOP who prides themselves on being “The Party of Lincoln” are failing to live up to that grandeur … not only failing, but they have become the Party of Losers and Liars … and whiners. They no longer have a platform or an ideology, just negativity toward anything the Democrats try to accomplish, and toward the people of this country. Good post … thanks Jeff!

On The Fence Voters

Apparently, being a first-class jerk is a prerequisite for being the front-runner in Republican presidential politics. According to many in the media, current Florida Governor Ron DeSantis sits atop the leaderboard. The real question, though, is why would that be?

Why would a guy who constantly criticizes the media, whines about anti-conservative bias, and flaunts a no mask policy in the middle of a pandemic, be a Republican voter’s first choice to run for the most powerful office in the world?

We’re left to conclude that it’s because most Republican voters kind of like their candidate to be an asshole. They want him or her to be mean to the media. They love it when someone talks tough and owns the libs daily. Oh, and if you have spoken openly about the fallacy of wearing a mask or shutting down economies to slow down the spread of the worst pandemic…

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Bloomin’ Fools Abound (in the GOP)

Lots of little annoying things to stir my angst bouncing about on the radar tonight …


Taking credit where none is due …

It amazes me how somebody can take credit for what someone else has done, for what they themselves attempted to undo.  But that’s exactly what at least one Republican senator, Roger Wicker from Mississippi has done.  Not a single republican voted for the stimulus bill that, despite them, passed both chambers of Congress and was signed into law by President Biden yesterday.  Mr. Wicker had the unmitigated gall to tweet …

“Independent restaurant operators have won $28.6 billion worth of targeted relief. This funding will ensure small businesses can survive the pandemic by helping to adapt their operations and keep their employees on the payroll.”

Fortunately, people aren’t as stupid as he thinks and he received thousands of negative responses, including my own (I’ll likely get another suspension from Twitter for this one!).  Speaker Nancy Pelosi hit the nail on the head when she said …

“It’s typical that they vote no and take the dough.”


How in the Sam Hell?

Florida governor Ron DeSantis is a bloomin’ fool.  The latest?  Well, when he refused to put in place a statewide mask mandate last year, a number of counties and cities imposed local mask ordinances and fined businesses that failed to follow the law.  Makes sense to me, especially given that Florida has the third highest number of total cases in the country.

Well, apparently some people complained, so yesterday Governor DeSantis signed an executive order forgiving any fines related to local government COVID-19 restrictions on people and business.  The order states any fines imposed between March 1, 2020, and March 10, 2021, fines imposed by any political subdivision of Florida related to local government COVID-19 restrictions are canceled.

Heather Wooding, the owner of Country House Restaurant in Winter Garden, was fined in December after several warnings and several customer complaints that some employees were not wearing masks. Says she …

“I just didn’t feel it was right, so we were going to fight it.”

Wooding says she reqires no one to wear masks as she defies the county order and supports the governor’s new order eliminating fines.

“We have people coming here because we don’t wear masks. They want to be normal. And they are happy to come to a place that does not wear masks.”

Well, Bully!  We all want to be ‘normal’, but first we have to be alive, fool!


Floridians sure do know how to pick ’em …

And another bloomin’ fool in Florida … do they breed them specially down there?  Senator Rick Scott, who also did not vote for the stimulus bill, is beseeching states and cities across America to refuse federal aid and put politics over policy. In a letter sent to governors and mayors in Red states just after the bill was approved on Wednesday, Scott called the widely praised piece of legislation as “massive, wasteful and non-targeted.” He encouraged state and local leaders, by way of sending back the aid, to demand that Congress “quit recklessly spending other people’s money.”

WAIT just a darned minute here!  He doesn’t seem to have a problem spending other people’s money on himself (salary, travel, meals, perks) does he?  But he just doesn’t want people who actually need a boost to get one!

Oh, and by the way … it is reported that Scott is meeting this week with the former guy, if you needed further proof that he’s a fool.  If Scott and DeSantis are the best that the GOP has to offer, then it’s no damn wonder they feel they have to take our right to vote away from us, for anybody with half a brain ain’t gonna vote for these two fools!


Meanwhile, back from Cancún

And another bloomin’ fool, though this one is from Texas … none other than the ignoble Senator Ted Cruz … you remember, the guy who took off for the warm beaches of Cancún last month while the people of his state were freezing to death?  Well, after that little fiasco, I predicted that his political career would be over, but it seems he’s found a way to revive it … not a legal or moral way, but when has that ever mattered to Cruz?

His latest scheme to fundraise for his next campaign is to autograph Dr. Seuss books … for a donation of $60 per book!  Who in their right mind would pay $60 for Ted Cruz scrawl on a book that he didn’t even write???  This strikes me as the worst form of plagiarism!  In an email sent to prospective donors, Cruz says that he will personally autograph a copy of “Green Eggs and Ham” in exchange for a $60 campaign contribution.

“Look at this as your 2021 “cancel culture collectible from Team Cruz … it will be a great conversation piece.”

I suppose it’s not quite as bad as the former guy autographing bibles a few years ago.  Seems there is no low to which these guys won’t stoop.


Give the man a big, fat “F”!

Louis DeJoy is still Postmaster General, though hopefully not for much longer else I’m going to go bash his head in myself.  I’ve written enough times about this conniving man and his attempt to completely destroy the United States Postal Service, so I don’t need to remind you.

Yesterday, testifying before the House Appropriations subcommittee on financial service, DeJoy asked for additional funding … get a load of this … to slow the mail down even more than it already is!  Oh, and he still plans to raise the price to mail a letter or a package.  Hell, I could walk a card to the UK quicker than the USPS can get it there, and a hell of a lot cheaper!

But that’s not even the very worst of it.  When asked by Representative Mark Pocan to assign himself a grade for his 10 months in office, DeJoy awarded himself an “A” for “bringing strategy and planning and effort.”  Seriously???  My damn package took nearly two months to get from here to Wales even after I paid extra for expedited shipping, and he calls that ‘strategy’???

Pocan shot back that service declines, including historically poor on-time delivery rates during the holiday season, were hardly deserving of high marks.  DeJoy must go, and I don’t really care at all how we get rid of him … as long as he goes and somebody competent and honest replaces him!

Your Rights Are On The Chopping Block

Today, the Supreme Court is hearing a case, Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee, that could determine what becomes of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.  The case could give state legislatures a green light to change voting laws, making it more difficult for some, notably non-whites and the poor, to vote.  Currently, some 43 states have more than 250 bills pending that would make it harder for Blacks, Hispanics, and the poor to vote in future elections.  The right to vote is the only thing, the single thing, that separates this nation from third-world dictatorships.  It is the only voice we have that carries any weight.  And now, they are trying to take that away from us.  Charles M. Blow’s column in Sunday’s Washington Post should be required reading for every Justice sitting on the Court today, and every lawmaker in Congress and state legislatures.


Voter Suppression Is Grand Larceny

We are watching another theft of power.

Charles BlowCharles M. Blow

By Charles M. Blow

Opinion Columnist

Feb. 28, 2021

In 1890, Mississippi became one of the first states in the country to call a constitutional convention for the express purpose of writing white supremacy into the DNA of the state.

At the time, a majority of the registered voters in the state were Black men.

The lone Black delegate to the convention, Isaiah Montgomery, participated in openly suppressing the voting eligibility of most of those Black men, in the hope that this would reduce the terror, intimidation and hostility that white supremacists aimed at Black people.

The committee on which he sat went even further. As he said at the convention:

“As a further precaution to secure unquestioned white supremacy the committee have fixed an arbitrary appointment of the state, which fixes the legislative branch of the government at 130 members and the senatorial branch at 45 members.” The majority of the seats in both branches were “from white constituencies.”

Speaking to the Black people he was disenfranchising, Montgomery said:

“I wish to tell them that the sacrifice has been made to restore confidence, the great missing link between the two races, to restore honesty and purity to the ballot-box and to confer the great boon of political liberty upon the Commonwealth of Mississippi.”

That sacrifice backfired horribly, as states across the South followed the Mississippi example, suppressing the Black vote, and Jim Crow reigned.

That same sort of language is being used today to prevent people from voting, because when it comes to voter suppression, ignoble intentions are always draped in noble language. Those who seek to impede others from voting, in some cases to strip them of the right, often say that they are doing so to ensure the sanctity, integrity or purity of the vote.

However, when the truth is laid bare, the defilement against which they rail is the voting power of the racial minority, the young — in their eyes, naïve and liberally indoctrinated — and the dyed-in-the-wool Democrats.

In early February, a Brennan Center for Justice report detailed:

“Thus far this year, thirty-three states have introduced, prefiled, or carried over 165 bills to restrict voting access. These proposals primarily seek to: (1) limit mail voting access; (2) impose stricter voter ID requirements; (3) slash voter registration opportunities; and (4) enable more aggressive voter roll purges. These bills are an unmistakable response to the unfounded and dangerous lies about fraud that followed the 2020 election.”

On Feb. 24, the center updated its account to reveal that “as of February 19, 2021, state lawmakers have carried over, prefiled, or introduced 253 bills with provisions that restrict voting access in 43 states.”

But it is the coded language that harkens to the post-Reconstruction era racism that strikes me.

In Georgia, which went for a Democrat for the first time since Bill Clinton in 1992 and just elected two Democratic senators — one Black and one Jewish — there have been a raft of proposed voter restrictions. As State Representative Barry Fleming, a Republican and chair of the newly formed Special Committee on Election Integrity, put it recently, according to The Washington Post, “Our due diligence in this legislature [is] to constantly update our laws to try to protect the sanctity of the vote.”

Kelly Loeffler, who lost her Senate bid in the state, has launched a voter organization because, as she said, “for too many in our state, the importance — and even the sanctity of their vote — is in question.” She continued, “That’s why we’re rolling up our sleeves to register conservative-leaning voters who have been overlooked, to regularly engage more communities, and to strengthen election integrity across our state.”

Senator Rick Scott and other Republicans on Feb. 25 introduced the Save Democracy Act in what they said was an effort to “restore confidence in our elections.”

Jessica Anderson of the conservative lobbying organization Heritage Action for America said of the legislation: “I applaud Senator Scott for putting forward common-sense, targeted reforms to help protect the integrity of our federal elections and the sanctity of the vote. The Save Democracy Act will protect against fraud and restore American’s confidence in our election systems while respecting the state’s sovereignty.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida is pushing a slate of restrictive voter laws that would make it harder for Democrats to win in the state. On his website, the announcement read this way: “Today, Governor Ron DeSantis proposed new measures to safeguard the sanctity of Florida elections. The Governor’s announcement reaffirms his commitment to the integrity of every vote and the importance of transparency in Florida elections.”

They can use all manner of euphemism to make it sound honorable, but it is not. This is an electoral fleecing in plain sight, one targeting people of color. We are watching another of history’s racist robberies. It’s grand larceny and, as usual, what is being stolen is power.

Only in America …

As I scrolled through the evening news last night, I came across story after story that had me shaking my head and saying, “Only in America”.  Not, mind you, in a good way.  So, after about the third one, I decided to compile them all into this post. Turned out I couldn’t fit them all into a single post, so there may be a follow-up … who knows?  I have a backlog …


Does he or doesn’t he believe in climate change science???

CulbersonJohn Abney Culberson is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from the State of Texas.  He is a republican … go figure.  He is a climate-change denier who claims that scientists have falsified data and that “the liberal obsession with climate change… is driven by their desire to raise more money for the government”.

Compared to Trump’s nearly half-million dollars spent from campaign funds buying the silence of his former paramours, Mr. Culberson’s improper expenditure of a mere $50,000 might seem like next to nothing, but a crime is a crime, and the hypocrisy in this one is truly astounding.  The expenditures in question include books, coins, Civil War memorabilia and other collectibles … nobody is quite sure how these were needed for his campaign.  It is well known that Culberson has a personal interest in collectibles and antiques, but he denies that these items were purchased to add to his collection.  Instead … guess what his reasoning is?  According to the Houston Chronicle …

“Culberson’s aides explained the purchase as research material on paleo-climatology, a subject that would help him understand climate science for his position on an appropriations subcommittee that oversees the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. They said the materials helped give him a better understanding of the changing levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.”

But … but … I thought he didn’t believe in climate change?

Only in America


A really bad move that will probably win him votes …

DeSantis-Gullim

Ron DeSantis/Andrew Gillum

In Tuesday night’s Florida primary elections, Ron DeSantis won the Republican Party nomination for the office of governor, and Andrew Gillum won the Democratic Party nomination.  Andrew Gillum is African-American, a fact that I mention only because of what happened after the election.

“The last thing we need to do is to monkey this up by trying to embrace a socialist agenda with huge tax increases and bankrupting the state. That is not going to work. That’s not going to be good for Florida.” – Ron DeSantis

A word.  A single word turned this statement from a typical hot-air bit of political rhetoric into an ugly, racist remark.  Members of both parties, as well as Fox News spoke out against DeSantis’ comment.  The NAACP Florida State Conference responded to DeSantis, calling comparisons to monkeys “by far the best-known racist references to African Americans in our national folklore.”

So, perhaps racist remarks by politicians are not exclusive to the United States, but the fact that the president of the nation defended the remarks and that he will likely gain voters for his remarks is, I think, unique.

Trump said he didn’t hear DeSantis’ racial slur, but then praised him as being “an extreme talent” and criticized Gillum, calling him a “failed Socialist Mayor”.

Only in America


Are you sure you were born?

U.S. citizens – people who were born in this country and have the official birth certificate that proves it – are being denied their rights to obtain a passport, and not only that, but their very citizenship is in question.  Even worse, some citizens are being refused entry to their country of origin, the country the were born in! In some cases, passport applicants with official U.S. birth certificates are being jailed in immigration detention centers and forced into deportation proceedings.

passportWHY, you ask?  Because this is part of Trump & Co’s effort to reduce both legal and illegal immigration, and the State Department claims that “the U.S.-Mexico border region happens to be an area of the country where there has been a significant incidence of citizenship fraud.”  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Guess what, Mr. Michael Pompeo, head of the State Department?  I would rather let 100 immigrants in than to abuse a citizen … or anyone … in this manner.  In my book Mike Pompeo and Donald Trump both earn a ZERO rating on human rights issues!

(Sorry, folks … my blood boiled for a minute there)

Only in America


Alternative Reality?

In January 2017, KellyAnne Conway, some sort of assistant to Donald Trump, though none of us have figured out quite what her role is other than to put her feet on the furniture and dress funny, coined the phrase ‘alternative facts’, when referring to the paltry number of people that attended the inauguration of Donald Trump.  It has become rather the Orwellian buzzword, the joke of the day every day, ever since.  Then we saw evidence of an alternative vocabulary, where up was down, good was bad, red was green, and so forth.  Today, though, I believe we are seeing an ‘alternative reality’.

On September 20th last year, Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico … hard!  It is on record as being the worst natural disaster to hit the island in all of recorded history.  The storm caused at least $90 billion of structural damage; the power grid was destroyed, leaving millions without electricity; neighborhoods were flooded; communication networks were down; over 1 million people had no drinking water; 93% of roads were impassible; infrastructure was heavily damaged, more than 60,000 homes were destroyed or heavily damaged, and the list goes on.

Keep in mind that Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, and its residents are U.S. citizens.  Yet, response and aid from the U.S. to Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Maria was slow … it was nearly two weeks after the storm before the first official U.S. aid arrived on Puerto Rico’s shores.  Trump made a visit in early October 2017 and made a virtual ass of himself by throwing rolls of paper towels to people who were suffering from a lack of food, electricity, potable water, had lost their homes, and in some cases their loved ones.  But yesterday he went one better …

trump paper towelsFor a long time, the death toll was officially recorded at only 64, though we all knew it was much higher, but there were a number of reasons it could not be accurately tallied.  This week, the official death toll is 2,975 people as a direct or indirect result of Hurricane Maria.  Some of those deaths would likely have been prevented with more and speedier assistance from the U.S.  But take heart, for Donald Trump says we did great.

“I think we did a fantastic job!” said he to … whomever believes hisbullshit.

We did a terrible job.  Too little, too late, and for too short a time.  We should be hanging our heads in shame, apologizing to the residents of Puerto Rico.  Donald can toot his horn, but ain’t nobody buyin’ it.

Only in America


Yeah, I know we are not the worst.  Many nations’ human rights violations should give us nightmares, many countries use and abuse their citizens far worse than we do.  No, we are not the worst.  But I’ve got news for you … we are far from being the best.  We are far from being even as good as we once were.  And we are getting worse by the day.  Think about it.