Watching Governor Greg Abbott of Texas hold a press conference in Uvalde, TX made it plain that no one takes the media seriously. Abbott said that eighteen year olds in Texas have been able to buy “long guns” for the last 60 years. No journalist asked about assault rifles or the period of the ban on them (from 1994 to 2004) and mass shootings in Texas during that period. Governor Abbott and the Texas media initially after the shooting said the shooter had a handgun, it was only late in the day of primary elections that the true murder weapons were revealed. Journalists never asked Governor Abbott about the delay in identifying the weapons, or if there were a political reason for this. Abbott said the murderer had no adult record, but there was no discussion that his eighteenth birthday was only a week before the shooting. An obvious question for the Governor and legislators is whether they believe that eighteen year olds need weapons of war like assault rifles; no journalist asked about this. It is reported that most mass shootings are committed by young men between the ages of eighteen and twenty-four; if this is a fact it was never brought up by journalists. Governor Abbott said that mental health is a problem in the Uvalde, Texas area; he was not asked why he would not expand Medicaid to get more dollars from the federal government for healthcare. Journalists in America have a problem; they seem to have limited mental capacity, courage, or character. Greg Abbott, Republicans, and other politicians regularly get away with ridiculous lies, misdirection, or spin to the detriment of American institutions and citizenry. If journalists are record keepers they need to use it to ask questions that matter.
In the world of Trump no one is responsible for anything. If you tell people to show up and threaten to get what you want; is it your fault? Trump did it on January 6, 2021 and he is not being charged with anything; are the smash and grab crime spree organizers different? I think that both should be held accountable, but in today’s America we are waiting almost a year later in Trump’s case. Leadership matters, but in modern America a wink and a nod agreement sends the message that others are to be targeted for behavior that has no impact for the right kinds of people. From mass murderers being taken for hamburgers by South Carolina police, to Trump leading a decades long crime spree with no consequences, we are witnessing an America lost and in danger. Millions of Americans claim they do not trust medical doctors or science, while others claim elections are rigged but provide no evidence. America’s enemies see a nation that is more likely to devolve into civil war than to fight to save democracy, or a liberal world order. America is weak and short-sighted enemies may pursue selfish goals rather than work together to save human civilization from climat crisis. The 2016 election may have been the final nail in the coffin; we shall see.
Smash and Grab theft is in the news with several incidents across the country. Organized crime is suspected as the cause of numerous thieves showing up at upscale stores at the same time. Our culture is undergoing a crisis of morality. A large number of people showed up at the US Capitol to steal an election while proclaiming they were there to “stop the steal”. A jury said an illegally armed teenager from another state had the right to claim self-defense for killing two citizens and maiming another. An upstate New York judge said a white man who had raped 4 teenagers should not have to go to prison. We have a selfish amoral culture problem that is growing. We will destroy ourselves if the majority of us do not support truth, decency, and justice FOR ALL.
Trump scandals are no surprise to anyone paying attention, but the pace of revelations about his malevolence and attempts to undermine our democracy is picking up. I hope the US justice system redeems itself and holds a high level criminal like Trump accountable. I suspect that the crime wave in US cities is related to the crime wave Trump ran in Washington. We need to make sure that the phrase “No one is above the law” is more than a platitude. Research and act to protect our republic by rejecting Republicans who enabled and still seek to protect Trump’s crime spree.
The news that Trump is facing accountability is a wonderful sign that our republic still stands. It may not be Trump personally yet, but that will come with the pursuit of the truth. American strength is founded in truth and justice. I am hopeful tonight that the forces of evil are past their peak and patriotic Americans will own the future.
Believing in truth and justice is what keeps us hopeful. The American justice system is flawed but remains among the best on earth and makes our country possible. Dictators always attack truth and seek to control people by being the source of all hope. Trump took his best shot at becoming a dictator and so far has failed. The American justice system will soon have the opportunity to show that no one is above the law by putting Trump on trial, but it very late. Reports of corruption and criminality by Trump are legion and show that justice has not been equal for the wealthy. Let’s hope reform and awareness create a more equitable justice system.
When you observe continuous criminality and corruption it is much like observing a turd in a pool. Things are not the way they should be and each time you see it is distressing. Many people feel this way as we wait for the toilet to flush and Trump (and other corrupt Republicans) to be held accountable. America will not be what it should be until it demonstrates that no one is above the law. Support leaders who are respectful of all people, but most importantly US citizens, laws, and institutions. America is still a great country, but we face immediate peril that is an existential threat.
Rosa Parks was a person who didn’t seek fame, but did not shrink from doing her part in the struggle for civil rights. After Mrs. Parks stood up for the civil rights of African-Americans on public transportation she was economically targeted, and had to leave Birmingham, Alabama. Darnella Frazier was not looking for recognition either, but she did the right thing when she saw evil. She held up a mirror not just to police behavior, but to America and what we allow in our public servants. Derek Chauvin would probably have gotten away with murder if Darnella had not stood up to his evil. With Darnella leading the way the Minneapolis community defined itself as people who would not tolerate clear evil. The struggle between those who will allow evil to triumph as long as it leaves them comfortable, and those who will not make a deal with the devil goes on. Hopefully new laws will protect decency for everyone and diminish opportunities for evil, but as the quote says “eternal vigilance is the price of liberty/“
The United States offers so many strengths and so much hope that it cannot be ignored by people around the world. Americans seem to be stuck in repeating cycles of conspiracy theories, assault rifle mass murders, abusive police incidents, failing infrastructure events, and an ongoing cold civil war revolving around culture, race, and politics. Americans say they want change, but vote for the same politicians who deliver the same results and threaten worse. There is no way that people with integrity can continue to ignore the reality that what we say we are, and who we actually are during elections is different. People are known for being deceptive and conflicted (demanding morality in others while being ruthless and amoral in pursuit of selfish goals for instance), but we are capable of enlightenment and acting in our ultimate best interest. Make sure that you know the stakes in the events of our time and act for a better future. George Floyd’s trial is a milestone on our journey to somewhere; let’s hope and work so that it is not hell.
American racism and social dysfunction are on trial again this week. Police departments are thrown into the breach to solve problems that we refuse to commit resources to solve as a society, or act as a source of repression. The police have a range of tools to coerce people, but they will be the first to tell you that those tools don’t work well with hopeless, traumatized, or mentally unstable persons. We must all support public safety by re-thinking how we achieve it. Police officers should not have high suicide rates, or a constant drumbeat of killing unarmed Black men or others because they feel threatened. Police have a dangerous job that is made worse by our society’s cruelty and heartlessness using them to clean up the mess or maintain a broken status quo. Support all levels of government in planning and implementing improved public safety measures that reduce negative or coercive police interaction with the public.