Black or Blue, Lives Matter

cops

This morning I heard a news pundit on CNN commenting on the horrible attacks on police in Dallas and the police shooting of a driver in Minnesota during which he referred to the “African American/Hispanic” community. He said it as if they are one and the same. This got me thinking. They are not the same. We are a nation divided by numerous cultures. And these cultures are increasingly at each other’s throats.

News of yesterday’s shooting of police in Dallas, Texas left me feeling pretty numb this morning as I prepared for a work day. Five brave men were killed and seven others were shot apparently by a 25 year old black man who claimed to be acting alone because he was upset at white people. Before being killed by police trying to apprehend him, he said he wanted to kill white people, especially cops.

This young man lived in a Dallas suburb and had served six years in the Army Reserves. Sadly there is little doubt he was influenced by the hateful, and ignorant comments made in recent years by many including our President, the Democratic Presidential nominee and the organization Black Lives Matter. They’ve all given voice to the myth that there is a systematic (as Obama has said) or systemic (as Clinton has said) racist problem among America’s police forces.

My unique persepctive: I’m a 50+ year old white man. Thirty-two years ago I met and later married a black woman. We were married 28 years and lived together over 30. I have three kids, 2 are adults, all of whom identify as black. After my divorce I was fortunate to meet and get into a relationship with a beautiful Mexican woman who came to the U.S. at age 13 and became a legal citizen in her 20s. For most of the past year we’ve seen each other 5-6 days per week.

The black community in the very liberal Seattle area where I live is distinct and separate from the white community and certainly from the Hispanic community. Generally speaking they live lives much different, with much different views, different interests, different celebrities, and different heroes than the nearly all-white suburban Seattle community in which I grew up.

It’s no different in the Hispanic community. Though my Mexican-American girlfriend was smart and professionally accomplished and had lived in both Seattle and San Diego, California for her entire adult life her knowledge of most pop or celebrity or sports personalities, events or history that I and many others take for granted was close to zero. And the same was true of many of her Hispanic friends from work and church. Hispanic people, at least in the Seattle-Tacoma area, associate with and live amongst themselves having little interaction with whites, or black either.

I’m confident were I to embed myself as thoroughly in the Asian or Gay communities I would be writing the same thing about them.

These different and diverse communities are not talking to one another. At best they’re talking at each other. At worst, they’re yelling at each other.

The Black Lives Matter movement was established on a lie that continues to be perpetrated and continues to harden the hearts of African-Americans across the country. If you’re black and you’re raised to believe that police are racist and that they WILL shoot you; of course you’re going to defend yourself and shoot back, or fight, or resist arrest. The same is true of Hispanics. Black Lives Matter, Barrack Obama, Hillary Clinton and much of the news media nationwide fed the beast that said Michael Brown of Ferguson, Missouri was an innocent and sweet little teenager who was gunned down by a cop for no good reason while Brown had his hands raised, essentially giving himself up. It’s a myth, but a widely believed myth.

Here are the facts: Little to no evidence exists that Brown had his hands raised and was humbly subjugating himself to a police officer. Witnesses who initially made such claims, recanted them when interviewed by police. There is clear evidence that Brown robbed a convenience store just prior to his confrontation with police. He assaulted the store clerk. He assaulted the police officer and tried to take his gun. And upon withdrawing from an initial scuffle charged the police officer before being shot. And Michael Brown was 6-foot 5-inches tall and weighed 289 pounds. Not a little guy.

While not to the same extent these myths or exaggerations have also been forwarded in numerous other police shootings and in the Travon Martin case. It’s a narrative that has infected the black community, the separate and at times isolated black community. It’s also permeated the Hispanic community. How many people think Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump hates Mexicans because he called them all rapists and drug dealers? He never said that. NEVER. But you believe he did because its been so reported on social media and even some mainstream media. What Trump said was a reference to illegal immigrants NOT all Mexicans or Hispanics. And he didn’t say all of them were rapists and drug dealers. He actually and accurately said, “Many of them are nice people” in the sort-of off the cuff manner that has endeared him with many and caused rancor with his opponents (It should be pointed out that these opponents wouldn’t support Trump if he had a halo above his head and angel’s wings on his back).

While the United States remains approximately 63% white that number has been decreasing for decades and is not likely to reverse course. Nor is it likely to reverse course that these divided communities will come together when we continue to elect leaders who repeatedly and strategically divide us with their rhetoric and activities.

I love the differences in the people and communities in which I have been in indoctrinated. And I love that I have almost always been eagerly welcomed in those communities. But when you’re the only white guy or gringo in the room, as has been my case many, many, many times over the past 30+ years you notice. And so do they.

What has always worked for me is to be curious and interested in the people with whom I’m around. And when difference come up I’m not afraid to talk about them. I think its helped me many times over the years.

We’re all Americans. We’re not “us” and “them”. Having separate racial, or cultural communities is fine. But lets not act like one is better than the other…as the whites, the black, the hispanics and I suppose others have done too often in recent years. Cops are NOT trying to kill black people. Those bad ones who make mistakes should justly be punished. But treat each case individually and please, please, please reject the demigods who claim systemic or systematic racism that simply doesn’t exist. Read the meaning of the words if you don’t know what it means…Hillary.

In the infamous words of another bad guy who was portrayed as a victim, “Can’t we all just get along”?

Your thoughts are welcome. Thanks for visiting.

 

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My New Life Anniversary

Working the mic in Total Broadcasting Service's former studio booth.

Michael Schuett working the mic in Total Broadcasting Service’s former studio booth.

Eleven years ago today, April 15, 2005, I walked into United Broadcasting Sales Company where I had worked for 13 years and handed my manager my resignation. Despite setting individual company sales records and serving as the default unpaid coach of so many new hires and despite company profitability relatively new company owners instituted a new pay plan that slashed everyone’s pay. Mine would have been cut over 35%.

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One of the 3 such awards United Broadcasting bestowed upon me.

I had many promises from numerous co-workers to join me in starting a new company, but none followed through. So I was left to fend for myself. Total Broadcasting Service has been like another child to me and grown through tough times, including my divorce. It hasn’t been easy. And despite those tough times and never quite attaining the high income levels I had before I am so proud I walked with wobbly legs to my previous manager’s desk 11 years ago and said I won’t be mistreated and under appreciated by them anymore. The UBSC owners were pissed and threatened me with legal action to stop my entrepreneurial efforts. I believe those threats, in part, scared off my former co-workers.

As it turned out I was the first of many who fled the plantation that United Broadcasting had become. When I quit they employed over 40 sales people. Within 2 months they were down to 13. Nearly all of the top sales people left for another Bellevue company. Many meeting with great success. That Bellevue company no longer exists and my former colleagues have scattered with the wind. United Broadcasting collapsed. It clung to a precarious existence for some 5 years before finally shutting its doors after 30 years in business. A greedy owner and a Liberal (even leftist) narcissistic, and incompetent management tree that believed in taking from their best and giving to their least-capable spelled the company’s doom.

I miss working with the many who became friends. After so many followed my lead and quit I went a while feeling somewhat responsible, since I had been the first. They eased my anxiety on the matter by seemingly improving their lives dramatically after leaving the plantation. I’m glad at least for Facebook to somewhat stay in touch with some of them. I’ve learned that if you don’t value your best people they will find someone else who does; a lesson that translates into personal relationships too, not just business.

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Getting into sales allowed me to make a lot more money right away

I’ve also learned that perseverance is omnipotent. Despite friends and my closest family members doubts and lack of support Total Broadcasting Service is coming off two consecutive record-setting sales years and 3 record-setting years out of the past 4 years. The best is yet to come. We’ve built strong relationships with an increasingly large host of fabulous and loyal clients. I’ve hired the truest and most loyal co-worker in Marianne Petersen who continues to grow in her work duties and continues to impress. Thank you Marianne for being such a valuable employee and person in my life.
Marianne atr Shoot

Total Broadcasting Service video Editor/Producer Marianne Petersen

My dream that I pray for is that my efforts will benefit my children and someday even my future grandchildren long after I have sauntered off this mortal coil. With God’s grace we will achieve this goal. And we’ll do it while forging a new journey with new compatriots who bless my life by being in it.
My plans for my life have turned unexpectedly at several points in my 52 years. Like anyone who reads this writing. Today’s anniversary represents one of the most significant switches in directions. If I’d not experienced this dramatic turn, the new turn I’m months into now, would be a lot scarier. So, ultimately, I’m grateful.
Call us for affordable video production, 425-687-0100.

Call us for affordable video production, 425-687-0100.

Republicans have a Gift they’re Blowing

debate-immigration-marco-rubio-donald-trumpDemocrats gave our nation’s Republicans a huge gift this election season. They gave the GOP lots and lots of love. And Republicans seem destined to stumble over the gift and kick it into the fireplace.

The gift Democrats gave the GOP was Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. Neither were going to beat a legitimate GOP Presidential candidate and move into the White House, or back into the White House as would be the case with Clinton. And yet, with this gift exquisitely gift wrapped for Republicans to take control of the White House after 8 years of Barrack Obama and his Democratic administration Republicans are saying, “Thanks, no thanks”.

Republicans started this whole election process with 16 candidates. Many of whom were very well-respected and accomplished. There were some good, and some very good candidates. And out of those 16 Republicans now seem destined to nominate the one, and possibly the only one, of those 16 who won’t beat the Democratic nominee.

Donald Trump has won primaries in New Hampshire and South Carolina. No Republican since before 1980 has won both states and NOT won the nomination of the grand old party. And at this writing it seems Trump is poised to win the Nevada caucuses. This, and all but 4 other candidates have withdrawn from the race; the natural winnowing process taking place. And as fervent as Trump’s supporters seem to be his nomination is increasingly likely. Can you imagine? President Trump? I can’t! That’s why the grand ol’ party’s constituents are giving back the generous gift Democrats handed them.

At this point we only acknowledge Bernie Sanders to be polite. He will not win the Dems’ nomination. The only thing that would change Hillary’s inevitable top of the ticket result would be if the Obama Justice Department does its actual job and indicts her; something she seems infinitely deserving of. Even without the indictment Clinton is a seriously flawed candidate. Seriously, does anything about her feel likable? I’ll be the first to admit that likability is not a prerequisite for being President of the United States (Richard Nixon for example). But it’s usually a requirement for election to the highest office in the land. Hillary is so completely unlovable, its hard to imagine anyone worse.

Except, it seems Republicans have found him. To be clear I don’t dislike Trump as much as others. I just recognize how dislikable he is and subsequently how unelectable he is. Much of Trump’s bombast is just that, bombast. He’s playing his cards. He knew it would work, he knew he held aces, and since it is working, he’s keeping it up. I believe so much of Trump’s most outrageous statements are strategy straight from his book Trump: The Art of the Deal in which he advocates taking an extreme position in negotiations in order to later settle for something more moderate. This is why I don’t hate or fear Trump as President as much as all Democrats do, many Republicans do, and more importantly most independents do. Recent nationwide polls show Trump’s unfavorable rating between 55% and 60+%. It’s hard to get elected President when nearly 3 in 5 Americans HATE you.

To those who LOVE The Donald, I would say this. You may love him, but its time to recognize that at no time has he garnered more than about 33% of Republican voters support. To win the White House He’ll need nearly 100% of Republicans to hold their noses and vote for him, plus a lot of independents, and YES, some Democrats.

And he’ll need some minority votes too. So, Mr. and Mrs. Trump supporters which demographic group is going to give Trump significant support? Blacks? Ya…good luck with that. Even before Obama blacks voted for Democrats 94% of the time. Hispanics (the largest minority group in the country)? He called immigrant Mexicans rapists and criminals! (Of course, that’s not actually what he said…but try and convince your average Latino of that after what will be more than a year of the national media saying that he did). How about Muslims? He wants to bar people of such faith from entering the country but he will somehow garner their vote? What are you drinking? Asians? Well, though Asians tend to vote Republican more than other minorities, keep in mind how Trump has bashed China at every opportunity.

I’m writing this now to urge undecideds Republicans and Independents to save our country. Vote for Marco Rubio when it comes your time to vote. And send him your money and your Social Media vote NOW. I truly want a Conservative in the White House to help bring back some much of what Barrack Obama has frittered away. But if GOP voters don’t happily accept their Democratic gift, then we’ll have to see what 12 straight years of Democratic rule looks like. That hasn’t happened since Harry Truman. Let’s hope the next time is many years from now.

4 Rules to Live By When Making an Offer on a House – US News

From pinpointing a magic number to wowing the seller, making an offer can be like walking a tightrope.

Source: 4 Rules to Live By When Making an Offer on a House – US News

Christopher Columbus: A good thing, even: Harvey Morris berates those who lay all the ills of the West at one man’s feet | Voices | The Independent

HALF a millennium ago tomorrow, the flagship Santa Maria, commanded by Captain-General Christopher Columbus, and with the caravels Pinta and Nina in her wake, made landfall at the island of San Salvador, 30 degrees west of the outer limits of the charted globe. Europe had discovered America and the course of world history was irrevocably changed.

Source: Profile: Christopher Columbus: A good thing, even: Harvey Morris berates those who lay all the ills of the West at one man’s feet | Voices | The Independent

Why Video will grow your Real Estate Business | LinkedIn

Source: Why Video will grow your Real Estate Business | LinkedIn

Tired of the Hate

Daisies

Pardon me while I go on a rant. I am so tired of hatefullness. I see it all the time and don’t understand it. Before anyone can accuse me of hypocrisy, let me state unequivocally that I have strong opinions and am not afraid to voice them. But you have never seen me rant that someone who’s mere ideas I oppose is “the lowest form of human life” a direct quote from a ultra-liberal “Friend” on Facebook about GOP Presidential candidate Scott Walker, and that was just the tip of the iceberg.

I see hate directed at Gays, blacks, Republicans, Democrats, Mexicans, Muslims, Huskies, Cougars, the list goes on and on. I’ve had some people do unspeakable hurtful things to me directly, some of these people were very close to me. I know others who suffered the same sort of treatment turn their affection around into hate. Some of these same people don’t understand why I don’t. I can’t. Its simply not in me.

I hate actions not people. Murder, rape, betrayal, and selfishness. I recognize the worst of the worst. But hate of people is too heavy a burden for me to carry. This isn’t about religion or faith, though my faith tells me to LOVE not hate, and to forgive. But its not my religion that prevents it, its just a deep seeded feeling.

I’ve been saddened by the immense growth in race hatred in the years since Obama took the White House. I didn’t vote for him, but remember in 2009 writing of my hope that his election would finally end the racial mistrust and hatred that existed. It didn’t. It has gotten worse. I think all this hatred can be fixed. But not by our current leaders. We need parents to tell kids to reject all those who enunciate hate. We need to teach our kids that the best way to persuade is with love, forgiveness, understanding and setting a good example. Nobody was ever persuaded by calling them a hateful name. Many have been persuaded by a kind word or gesture.

I believe illegal immigration is a serious problem in our country and needs to be curtailed. But it’s wrong to characterize so many illegal immigrants as “murderers, drug dealers and rapists…and I suppose some are good people” as Donald Trump has done. Yes, statistics show illegal immigrants bring a disproportionate amount of crime to our country. This is an uncontroverted fact. But the overall picture of the results of illegal immigration is the harm it causes legal Americans, yes in crime; but also in lower wages, fewer jobs, diminished social resources (i.e. benefits) and housing. That’s not hate for one group of people. That’s compassion for another group of people. Our people. Fellow Americans. There is no need to hate the illegals because they want a better life in our country. But they must do it legally, in a controlled manner in order to not hurt those to whom we owe the most; our own brothers and sisters and moms and dads.

People need not misunderstand disagreement with hatred. Too often I see people calling another a “hater” because of their views, when hate has nothing to do with it. Some one once said, “Anyone who thinks you can’t strongly disapprove of a persons actions and not hate them but love them, has never raised a teenager.” Jesus once said, “Let him among you without sin, cast the first stone”. Where is that sensibility in today’s culture? The woman who Jesus saved from a stoning didn’t get off without a reprimand. Jesus forgave her of her sin(s) then sent her away with the admonition to “sin no more”. When asked by his disciple Peter how often he should forgive a brother who sinned against him, “Up to seven times?” he asked. Jesus said “I say to you not seven, but seventy times seven”. That’s not religion. That’s common sense. That’s learning to live more happily.

Be strong. Be opinionated. Argue for your beliefs. But don’t hate the person who feels counter to you. Provided their beliefs don’t inhibit your ability to live and be happy…let them go. Let them live as they would see fit.

I am a much better man now than I was in years past primarily because I won’t let anger hurt me or others any more. It’s a wonderful way to live that took me too long to discover. It took someone hurting me in the most profound way to come to this way of thinking and feeling. But it’s made me better as a result. I honestly believe others can benefit as have I. (And now for some religion…) And upon embracing a life of love, peace and understanding I believe God directly intervenes and blesses you. And even if you don’t believe that…you bless yourself.

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