Apparently Segregation Was a Choice.

She’s become a name in politics that I despise almost as much as the madman living in the White House. Once again readers, I give you a DeVos complaint.

As those of us paying attention know the Secretary of Education is very much pro-Charter school, often calling it something along the lines of “school choice.” I could go into a long rant about why I dislike charter schools but that will make this a loooong post. If you want to learn more, I’d suggest you google the Last Week Tonight Episode where John Oliver goes into charter schools. If you want something more unbiased, then may I suggest research.

Anyway, DeVos was recently quoted for saying that historically black universities have been: “real pioneers when it comes to school choice.” A lovely statement from someone who clearly thinks the phrase “separate but equal” was a good idea. Colleges and Universities that have been historically black have been that way because many other colleges and universities refused to allow in black students.

Frankly if you don’t know that then you’re not qualified to lead Education in this country.

Advertisements

Civility

Is the time of civil discourse over? Can we repair this fractured country or is it just time to go separate ways? I’m thinking more and more that we just want to tear each other apart. I’m not going to pretend this all started with the last election or even that I’m immune to saying horrible things about people. This has been a long slow decline for all of us.

I read this article today in the Miami Herald about 2 gay men who were harassed by a man screaming “You live in Trump country.” http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/florida-keys/article134965699.html That’s just part of the iceberg lately Jewish cemeteries are being vandalized, community centers threatened, and people all over being attacked because of the color of their skin.

More and more it seems like hate is winning out. Every issue seems to be black and white and neither side seems intent on talking. I grew up in a family that didn’t hate anyone. The first time I heard a white boy call a black boy by the N-word I was fifth grade and I was stunned. I never heard it outside of a movie. The reason the white boy said it… the black boy had just kicked a ball over the white boy’s head in a kickball game. Any yet today, decades later, I’m no longer stunned. Hatred seems like the way of things.

Maybe change needs to start small. If someone angers you tomorrow, turn it around and be nice in return. I’ll try to do the same.

And Strike 3…

Third post in at least 14 hours… first one today where I’m not going to say something bad about the Secretary of Education… you know, the woman who bought her job and has no background with public schools for herself or her family which really should make her unqualified. Ok I lied.

Any, so the White House has banned CNN, the NY Times, the LA Times, the BBC, and the Guardian from today’s briefing to the press.

I really should start a massive rant but instead I’m just going to post this: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

If you don’t know where that comes from or why as an American you should know how important these words are then I really have no idea what to say.

Two Posts in a Day… I Must Be Annoyed

When I first read about the new cabinet members I felt it was a race to determine which freaked me out more. We seem to have a clear winner. Congratulations Secretary DeVos.

I could write for hours about what I dislike about the woman… but I have a meeting soon so let’s make this a short post. In her speech as CPAC last night she joked that no one gets a free lunch.

I’d like to remind everyone that the lady who bought her post is now in charge of the National School Lunch Program that provides free lunches to possibly as many as 20 million school children. Gotta love it when a billionaire is in charge of deciding when children of struggling parents get food.

This administration screams about national security. Maybe they should listen to part of the declared reason behind the program. When it began, a Presidential Proclamation declared it to be “a measure of national security, to safeguard the health and well-being of the Nation’s children.”

Just curious Secretary DeVos… ever worry about not affording a meal? Food for thought.

State’s Rights

Last night at CPAC the woman who happily bought her cabinet position as Secretary of Education happily defended allowing various states to decide how to treat transgender students by stating (And yes this is a paraphrase) that it was a state’s rights issue. That often seems to be the drumbeat of the right wing. And to be honest, I do think some things have to be state’s rights… an example of which I’ll come to later. But there has to be a line of how we treat our fellow humans or we risk something greater.

What if in the past we had left the idea of who should vote to the states? Gotta wonder which states would still be telling women and minorities that they can’t vote. Especially when you considered the amount of tricks some states have pulled out to limit minority votes.

How about with gay marriage? If you really think that should be left up to states then think about this, JAMA Pedatrics recently reported that since the Obergefell v. Hodges case which struck down all anti-gay marriage laws the suicide rate of teens in a sexual minority has decreased by quite a bit: http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapediatrics/fullarticle/2604258. If your answer to that right now is “So what,” then 1) If you are a Christian try to remind yourself that Jesus said to love all, 1a) If you’re still saying “so what” or “but Jesus hates the gays” then I’m really sorry that you have that hate in your heart. 2) If you’re a different religion then I’d love to hear your justification. 3) If you’re not religious and you don’t care then I find your lack of compassion to be disturbing.

Ok… so getting back to my point about transgender bathroom laws and state’s rights. Basically  by removing federal protection then certain states will continue to stigmatize a segment of the population. Transgenders will continued to be singled out as “different” which will allow others to see them as not on their level of humanity. Let’s face it, a lot of the opposite to those laws has been attempts to link sexual deviance to transgenders. Without federal protect we risk allowing more students at risk of suicide or threats to continue to be threatened.

Alright, so there’s the rant against the Secretary of Education and the defense of transgender protections. Now here’s the state’s rights part. Last night Melissa McCarthy, wait sorry that was Spicer, said the federal government would enforce federal drug laws in states that had voted to allow recreational marijuana usage. Just curious… why isn’t that a state’s rights issue?

So you want to be pro-life…

In my last post I brought up the topic of a Texas Congressman who believes women who have abortions should be criminalized. He notably never mentioned what should happen if a man supports a woman having an abortion. In fact a big issue with pretty much anyone I’ve ever talked to who is anti-abortion seems to have blinders on. The question does become, what’s next. Despite anti-abortion protesters claims that women frequently use abortion as birth control there is no proof whatsoever. In fact taking in the stats that women tend to have 30 years of fertility and contraceptives are not perfect statistics from multiple sources show that half of all pregnancies are unintended.

Now, before you frown and say well the woman shouldn’t be having sex to begin with… let’s just avoid that fight altogether. Let’s go straight to the pregnant woman. These women might have many reasons for not wanting a child: financial instability, unready emotionally, no family support structure to help, etc. And that doesn’t even get into horrible statistics about rape. Sure you could tell the woman have the child and put it up for adoption, but do YOU now care about the child’s well being.

I recently ran across a quote from a Catholic Nun who brought up this hypocrisy of the whole “pro-life” movement. Joan Chittister in a 2004 PBS interview said:
“I do not believe that just because you’re opposed to abortion that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed. And why would I think that you don’t? Because you don’t want any tax money to go there. That’s not pro-life. That’s pro-birth. We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of pro-life is.”

I honestly cannot say it any better than her. I have my issues with the Catholic church and some of it’s representatives, especially Rev. Philip Pizzo who suggested that protesters should commit suicide. But on this issue, Miss Chittister and I agree. I don’t know if she is against abortion or not. But regardless we agree on the social issues.

If you wish to learn more about Joan Chittister as I wish to, she has her own website: http://www.joanchittister.org/