The Sleep Of Reason Breeds Monsters, and It Can Do That In The United States of America

Standard

800px-Museo_del_Prado_-_Goya_-_Caprichos_-_No._43_-_El_sueño_de_la_razon_produce_monstruos

(Francisco Goya ~1799)

This image is one of Francisco Goya’s most well known and important. It has been debated if its meaning lies in the personal for Goya or on commentary on society. We can never be sure of what the artist intended.

It is possible, however, to see how when people abandon reason and analysis, that horror follows. Fascism arose in the 20th Century as people in Germany, Austria, and Italy primarily abandoned reason to follow the emotional cults of personality that would lead to the worst evil the world has ever known.

In the United States, which has a terrible history of bigotry, nationalism, and violence, driven by right wing forces that abandon reason and, using tactics of Hitler, such as blaming others through scapegoating and pull people to their worst impulses and the use of the big lie, in which an untruth is repeated loudly and often, we must recognize that such evil is here.

The United States, on January 6th, experienced an attack that was directly against the sovereignty of the country, against freedom, and against democracy. This was the worst attack against the foundation of our nation since the Civil War. This was not a riot gone terribly wrong; this was a planned insurrection, an attempt to overthrow the government of our nation, and those responsible should be held to account for their actions. The insurrectionists responded to a President who used Hitlerian tactics of the big lie about the “stolen election”, which was fair and secure and not stolen, and scapegoating members of Congress as the enemy rather than members of a different political party. These actions were real, and they were horrific and abominable.

Americans, of any party, who believe in democracy must repudiate such beliefs. If as some suggest, we simply move past this insurrection, then we are agreeing once more, to abandon responsibility, analysis, and reason. The consequences of such ignoring of the enormity of what happened can be devastating to our nation and our democracy.

White power groups are an extension of the evil that Hitler manifested. Let there be no mistake about it. They represent bigotry and evil and dictatorship. And they are a direct threat to our freedom and democracy.

We must not fall into a national sleep of reason. We must stay awake, otherwise, the fate of this nation, of the United States of America, for which so many fought and died in many wars, will be at risk.

Martin Luther King Jr Day–2021

Standard
martin-luther-king-jr-393870_960_720

(www.pixabay.com)

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and I would like to offer a few of this extraordinary American’s quotations as a tribute to him. He was one of the finest, most decent, and empathetic people in the history of the United States of America. We should all remember him and honor his teaching, his legacy, and his call for justice for everyone.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

“There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must take it because conscience tells him it is right.”

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

“We must live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”

Quotations on Democracy

Standard

abraham-lincoln-12

“The ballot is stronger than the bullet.”

                                                          Abraham Lincoln

President_Barack_Obama

 

“There’s no such thing as a vote that doesn’t matter.”

                                                           Barack Obama

 

 

Robert_F_Kennedy_crop

 

“What has violence ever accomplished? What has it ever created? No martyr’s cause has ever been stilled by an assassin’s bullet. No wrongs have ever been righted by riots and civil disorders. A sniper is only a coward, not a hero; and an uncontrolled or uncontrollable mob is only the voice of madness, not the voice of the people.”

                                                            Robert F. Kennedy

 

001

“Those who vote and respect the will of the people  in elections are true patriots; those who riot and perform acts of sedition are traitors, as are those who support the insurrectionists.”

                                                           Charles F. French                                            

How Dare They?

Standard

I am now feeling angry, frustrated, and frightened, all at once. My wife and I went out for what was supposed to be a short afternoon trip. The day was going to busy, with just a short afternoon diversion.

There was a Trump rally at the intersection near our place, and that is not an issue. Everyone has the right to protest in the U.S.A, but some were carrying automatic rifles (perhaps semi-automatic, but that really doesn’t change anything) and standing right at the edge of the road and screaming at cars. This should not be allowed–when I saw this, I immediately thought–they would have been at home in Nazi Germany. They are bullies, and they are not supporting democracy. How dare they try to intimidate people that way.

The election is over, and Trump lost. That is what happens with elections; sometimes your candidate wins, and sometimes your candidate loses. I learned that a long time ago. Trying to influence an election through intimidation is the tactic of a would-be totalitarian government.

We are supposed to be The United States Of America.

american-flag-2144392_960_720

Quotations By Isaac Asimov

Standard

Isaac.Asimov01

(https://en.wikipedia.org)

 

“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.”

 

“The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.”

“The easiest way to solve a problem is to deny it exists.”

Trump’s Attack On Democracy

Standard

flag of america

(Photo by Sharefaith on Pexels.com)

What happened the other night in Portland, Oregon should have all Americans who believe in the Constitution, Freedom, and Democracy outraged and frightened. Please do not divert the subject by speaking about “riots”. That is an issue that is addressed by local and state authorities, not the Federal Government.  The President does not seem to care about the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America.

The Fourth Amendment says, “The right of the people to  be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

Having Federal agents, wearing police insignia without identification of person or office arresting people without warrants and taking them away in unmarked vehicles is a clear violation of both the Fourth Amendment and their oath to uphold the Constitution; it is, by its very nature, an assault on American freedom and democracy. Without a warrant and an authorized jurisdiction of policing, these actions are kidnapping.

Let me be very clear. What happened is what occurs in totalitarian dictatorships, such as Putin’s tactics in the Crimea. Putin is very likely extremely proud of his friend, Donald Trump.

Further, for those who are true conservatives and care about the separation of states and city rights from the Federal government, they should be horrified. This was a clear violation of state and city sovereignty and jurisdiction.

It is also ironic that with the turmoil in our country about the abuse of police power, that these actions, themselves, are abuse of police power.

Let me be clear. I am not speaking as a member of a political party. I am speaking as a proud American who holds our Constitution to be a sacred document. Regardless of political affiliation, no matter if you are Republican, Democratic, or Independent, you should decry these actions. Our land must never become one that is ruled by autocrats and dictators who use force as they wish and ignore the rule of law.

Let us also remember that many fought and died to preserve out democracy. Let us honor their memory by insisting on the government abiding by the Constitution of the United States of America.

1920px-SMA_Dunway_Burial_at_Arlington_National_Cemetery_2008

(https://en.wikipedia.org)

Rest In Peace Rep. John Lewis

Standard

John_Lewis-2006_(cropped)

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Lewis)

The United States of America lost an heroic figure with the passing of Representative John Lewis on Friday from pancreatic cancer.  (1940-2020)

Mr. Lewis was a major figure in the Civil Rights Movement and worked alongside Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He participated, in the March on Washington, and he led the march, as a young man, across the Edmund Pettis Bridge in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965. This would come to be known as Bloody Sunday because of the violence the marchers encountered, including Mr. Lewis.

He would later be elected to the United States House of Representatives in which he served for 30 years; he was frequently considered  to be the Conscience of America. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Obama in 2011.

Among Mr. Lewis’ quotations are “When you see something that is not right, not fair, not just, you have to speak up. You have to  say something, you have to do something.” and “I’m very hopeful. I am very optimistic about the future.”  and “Get in good trouble, necessary trouble, and help redeem the soul of America.”

Mr. John Lewis was a tireless fighter for justice and against injustice. He will be missed.

Rest In Peace

Quotations on Leadership

Standard

martin-luther-king-jr-393870_960_720

(www.pixabay.com)

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands in times of challenge and controversy.”

                                                               Martin Luther King, Jr.

DP156671

(https://www.metmuseum.org)

“I have three precious things which I hold fast and prize. The first is gentleness; the second is frugality; the third is humility, which keeps me from putting myself before others. Be gentle and you can be bold; be frugal and you can be liberal; avoid putting yourself before others and you can become a leader among men.”

                                                                       Lao Tzu

 

theodore-roosevelt-393205_960_720

(www.pixabay.com)

“To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.”

                                                                      Theodore Roosevelt

398px-Michelle_Obama_2013_official_portrait

(https://en.wikipedia.org)

“People who are truly strong lift others up. People who are truly powerful bring others together.”

                                                                     Michelle Obama

R. I. P. Elijah E. Cummings

Standard

Elijah_E._Cummings_official_photo

(https://en.wikipedia.org)

America lost a great man today with the death of Representative Elijah E. Cummings from Maryland at the age of 68.

Mr. Cummings, a brilliant orator, was a tireless advocate for social justice, and he spoke for the causes of the poor and the left-behind in the United States of America. Among his causes were fights for health care and justice for all Americans, regardless of class, race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation.

He spoke of the need for civility in the government but also the absolute necessity for the government to serve the people’s needs. He battled for justice and against injustice. He advocated for the defense of democracy. He was a tireless American patriot.

He will be missed.

He was a great American.

R. I. P. Elijah E. Cummings

usa-1177272_960_720

(https://pixabay.com)

Quotations on Taking A Stand

Standard

martin-luther-king-jr-393870_960_720

(https://pixabay.com/)

“There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must take it because conscience tells him it is right.”

                                                                Martin Luther King Jr.

 

albert-einstein-1144965_960_720

(https://pixabay.com/)

“The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.”

                                                                Albert Einstein

 

eliewiesel

“We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”

                                                                Elie Wiesel