You Are Being Manipulated; Guns, Abortion, Healthcare

“When a broad table is to be made, and the edges of planks do not fit, the artist takes a little from both, and makes a good joint. In like manner here, both sides must part with some of their demands.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

I’ve written it before, and it remains true today. YOU ARE BEING MANIPULATED. You, be you Republican, Democrat, Independent, Liberal, Progressive, or Conservative…YOU are being manipulated. You are being made to feel angry. And you are being made to feel the opposition…from your point of view…is stupid or evil or both. Once I outline a few recent examples, I think you too will agree. I would ask, how could you not?

The predictable political rants over gun control following the calamitous murder of 58 Country Music fans in Las Vegas Sunday night prompts this post. As if a Pavlovian response to it those on the left are calling for restrictions or bans on assault weapons and/or bump stocks which the killer used to make his semi-automatic rifles into fully automatic killing machines. 2nd Amendment advocates reacted predictably saying the Democrats want to take away your guns and make us all servile patrons of a Nanny state.

The fact is that a poll from June 2016 (and other polls) following the killing of 49 at a Orlando nightclub showed that 55% of Americans favored tougher gun laws. But when broken down to specific restrictions like wider background checks, keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally ill or felons or people on the terror watch-list support grows to between 87-90%.

With such overwhelming support you have to wonder why something isn’t done by Congress. Nothing is done, because if something truly effective and SMART were done Democrats and Republicans would lose an issue in which to bludgeon the other party. Each party is served by keeping the issue alive. It goes back to the old axiom “Follow the money”. Donations to each party as well as the NRA and Anti-gun groups grows precipitously from each groups/party’s constituents whenever there is a mass killing in the United States involving guns. USA Today also reported Monday that stocks in U.S. gun makers shot up 3% following the Vegas shootings.

So Democrats keep hammering Republicans as gun lovers and as being unconcerned for those killed by gun users. The GOP is afraid to budge even on the most reasonable gun restrictions for fear of additional measures coming in the future eventually leading to repeal of the 2nd Amendment; and for fear of suffering repercussions at the ballot from gun enthusiasts.

It’s the same with Democrats and abortion. A Gallup poll shows that a majority of Americans favor some restrictions on abortion plus an additional 18 percent favor a complete ban. So, 70% of Americans favor some restrictions or a total ban on abortions. A separate ABC News poll shows 62% of Americans favor a ban on late-term or partial birth abortions. But faced with this overwhelming data Democrats jump up and down screaming that Republicans want to take away a woman’s right to choose. They say its part of the GOP’s War on Women. Like Republicans with guns they won’t budge on any reasonable abortion restrictions for fear that money will dry up and liberal voters will remove them from office. Such a position always leads to the nonsensical dodge answer we saw from Hillary Clinton during last year’s debates.

It’s been over 50 years since the Supreme Court Roe vs Wade decision that legalized abortion on demand at any stage of a baby’s development in the womb and we still can’t get Congress and a President to agree that aborting a child days or weeks before their natural birth is essentially murder of a fellow human being. There have been numerous times in the past 25 years when Pro-Life Republicans controlled both Houses of Congress and six years under George W. Bush and right now when they controlled Congress and the Presidency. So why not take action? Because then the GOP wouldn’t have their issue any more. They wouldn’t be able to call Democrats baby killers AND continue to receive the political donations they get from Pro-Life groups. 

Healthcare is no different from the abortion issue and gun control. In watching the Republicans first in the House and then in the Senate continually fail to repeal the falling-apart Affordable Care Act with zero Democratic help or input I’ve come to two conclusions. Democrats will block and fail to support any bill that includes wording repealing Obamacare. Republicans could present a bill that is a near carbon-copy of Obamacare under a different name but Democrats wouldn’t support it if it includes language making AFA the former law of the land. Secondly, Republicans are so invested in repealing Obamacare they would never approve any legislation that keeps the name, AFA, even if it’s proposed solutions completely overturn every unwanted, unworkable aspect of the key piece of legislation in Barack Obama’s legacy.

And holding on to a “problem” for political gain is not just an American tradition. Or have you not heard about the plight of the Palestinian refugees. 70 years ago hundreds of thousands of Arab peoples fled the newly formed state of Israel for neighboring Arab, mostly Muslim, states of Lebanon and Syria and Jordan. Those refugees and their subsequent heirs are denied citizenship, home ownership or any kind of legal status in the countries to which they fled. Stop for a moment and ask yourself, what would happen if they were welcomed in all legal sense into the nations in which they’ve resided for the past 70 years? Would we still have a Palestinian crisis? My guess is no at best; and at worst it would be a far less divisive issue resulting in far less terrorist deaths and wars all these many decades later.

Neither Republican or Democratic party will compromise on our issues. In today’s political real-life world to compromise is to be a traitor to your party and to your constituents.

Thank God our great American leaders of the past didn’t feel that way. At the first Constitutional convention the elderly statesman Benjamin Franklin urged his fellow conventioneers to approve the newly written document saying: “I doubt too whether any other Convention we can obtain, may be able to make a better Constitution: For when you assemble a Number of Men to have the Advantage of their joint Wisdom, you inevitably assemble with those Men all their Prejudices, their Passions, their Errors of Opinion, their local Interests, and their selfish Views. From such an Assembly can a perfect Production be expected? It therefore astonishes me, Sir, to find this System approaching so near to Perfection as it does; and I think it will astonish our Enemies, who are waiting with Confidence to hear that our Councils are confounded, like those of the Builders of Babel, and that our States are on the Point of Separation, only to meet hereafter for the Purpose of cutting one another’s throats. Thus I consent, Sir, to this Constitution because I expect no better, and because I am not sure that it is not the best.” He compromised.

So did Abraham Lincoln. Most people’s knowledge of history tells them that our 16th President freed the slaves with the Emancipation Proclamation. If that’s your memory, your memory is false. Lincoln compromised. His Emancipation Proclamation of January 1, 1863 only freed the slaves in the rebellious Confederate states. Four “border states”, Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland, and Delaware, had slavery and fought for the Union. Lincoln didn’t want to lose those states to the Confederacy. So he compromised his own principles for the greater good of winning the war, retaining the United States whole and living to fight the battle of slavery at another time.

One of the least known but impactful compromises in American history was the Connecticut Compromise of 1787 which created the bicameral Congress we live under today. It allowed for each state regardless of size to have two representatives in the Senate, and representation based on population in the lower House.

Let’s imagine for a moment what might happen if our political leaders stopped driving wedges between Americans and instead compromised on these three divisive subjects.

What if Democrats agreed to halt all late-term abortions after 20 weeks (like a bill just passed by the House last week) in exchange for bans on bump stocks, assault weapons and gun sales to all with mental health issues, criminal backgrounds, or on the terrorist watch list. Republicans would agree to the greater good of saving unborn lives while relinquishing their debatable and somewhat twisted interpretation of the 2nd Amendment.

On healthcare what if Republicans agreed to let the name Affordable Care Act stand, but agreed with Democrats to completely change it by removing the mandatory insurance purchases by individuals and companies, allowing for intra-state purchase of insurance, and tax-deductible health savings accounts, as well as high deductible catastrophic coverage policies.

What would happen…three issues that have been issues dividing Americans for decades would instantly be removed. Each side would have to compromise on one of their core issues, so neither side would look like losers…or both sides would. And Americans could truly benefit from some common sense legislation that most Americans support. Other issues may still cause us to debate but these 3 vitally important matters will finally be addressed in a truly bipartisan common sense manner.

No I’m not drunk.

 

A Question About Abortion

United States House of Representatives Seal

United States House of Representatives Seal (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)

A pregnant woman

All my life I’ve never ever understood one aspect of the Pro-Life vs Pro-Abortion fight; and it has come up again this week as the U.S. House of Representatives debates a bill that would make abortion of 20 weeks of pregnancy illegal. My question is…why is it so darned important that pro-abortion (pro-choice…if you prefer) advocates hold on to the right to kill what is undeniably a viable human life so late in a pregnancy even if the pregnancy is the result of a rape? If my math is right 20 weeks is nearly five months.

As usual cooler heads always fail to prevail in the debate over abortion. It’s like common sense simply doesn’t exist on this subject. The lack of common sense produces insensitive Republican politicians making asinine statements like “legitimate rape” and that there “Was a low rate of pregnancy from rape” as AZ-R Trent Franks said yesterday. And it leads to Democrats defending the actions of murderers like the Philadelphia abortion quack Kermit Gosnell.

Yesterday the House Judiciary Committee passed the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Act” on a strictly party line vote. It bans abortion 20 weeks after conception based on the premise that at 20-weeks unborn babies can feel pain. Democrats offered repeated Amendments, which were all rejected, including granting exceptions for cases of rape and incest. Upon having such Amendments rejected Democrats continually scorned Republicans, calling them insensitive, uncaring, brutal and other standard epithets for opposing their desire to ignore the fact that they want the right to choose killing a viable human life…regardless of its genealogy.

But the insults again led me to wonder what I have always wondered. If pregnant through rape or incest why not get an abortion LONG before the fifth month? Why wait so long? I accept the fact that I might be missing something, and I welcome a cool-headed pro-abortionist to explain to me why ignoring a human life is less important than allowing a pregnant woman to procrastinate endlessly…or at least through the entire nine month pregnancy. I am pro-choice and pro-human life. I believe a fetus in the first trimester is not human and a woman’s right to govern what happens to her own body should not be infringed. But I also believe a BABY in the third trimester is a viable human life, capable of survival outside the womb. It’s the 2nd trimester that’s a grey area I claim no strong feelings for, one way or the other; except to say when in doubt value life over choice and protect the innocent baby.

But when asked to extend the right to an abortion through the entire pregnancy I sincerely don’t understand. Isn’t it common sense that if you allow someone, anyone, man or woman, to procrastinate…they will? Or am I the only kid in school who only did his homework in the final couple days before it were due in spite of having the homework assigned some two-three weeks prior? By establishing a national law and understanding that you, the pregnant woman, MUST decide to keep or abort your pregnancy by the 20th week of your pregnancy…guess what…they’ll decide. And even if they pass the 20 week point having not decided a woman now as always still maintains the right to give up the child for adoption, a far more favorable option than the abominable choice of choosing to kill a viable human life.

Approximately 1.3-million abortions are performed in this country every year. That’s over 50 million since 1973 when Roe vs Wade became the law of the land, and only 1.3% of them were performed at 21 weeks of gestation or later. Between 88-92% of abortions are performed in the pregnancy’s first trimester. Is it so much to ask that the small percentage, the TINY percentage of women who can’t make up their minds in five months to get an abortion be prevented from doing so once that baby can feel the pain of being killed? I honestly don’t think it’s so much to ask. But I welcome someone explaining it to me.

Thanks for visiting. Comments are welcome.

When Does a Life Begin Having Rights?

The artificial argument created by the Obama Re-Election Administration(and Yes I termed them that way intentionally) over women’s birth control has gained more steam than I dreamed possible. Democrats like Nancy Pelosi have termed this artificial, non-existent fight the Republican’s War on Women.

Republicans War on Women at the State Level we...

I am seldom surprised by the gullibility of the American electorate, but must admit this time, I’m dumbfounded. Obama and his minions have successfully managed to divide and enrage people with reasonable and differing views where mostly quiet co-existence had existed for the past 50 years.

Are Conservatives actively trying to impede women’s access to birth control? Puhhhhleeeezzz! If you believe so show some balls. Comment on this blog and tell us all where those impediments exist.

Prevention Park, is the largest Planned Parent...

Prevention Park, is the largest Planned Parenthood administrative and medical facility in the nation. It also serves as the headquarters for 12 clinics, located in Houston, Texas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Trying to de-fund Planned Parenthood, you say? That is more about cutting wasteful government spending and abortion than it is about contraception. And Planned Parenthood would not cease to exist were the Federal Government gifts to their operating budget cut off. PP can and would continue to receive generous private donations. In fact, it could be argued that their revenue would actually grow from empowered liberals coming to the rescue of this liberal iconic venue.

Liberals: your next ploy would be to throw up Catholics resistance and outrage to the Obama Health and Human Service Administration’s birth control mandate. This mandate was announced in January after a GOP Presidential debate in which

American television journalist and a former po...

George Stephanopulos

ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos shocked the world and Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney

Mitt and Ann Romney on December 22, 2007, at a...

Mitt and Ann Romney

by asking the seemingly illogical, and uncalled for question “Can state’s disallow health care plans from offering contraception coverage?” Romney correctly pointed out that nobody wants to block contraception coverage. And he said it again, and again and again because Stephanopoulos kept asking; clearly indicating his mission from Democratic headquarters. Catholics righteous condemnation of the HHS mandate is totally and completely about religious freedom, not contraception. Were Catholic Church employees not able to have contraception paid for by their employer-provided health care plan they would not be denied contraception. They would merely be denied having contraception paid for, in part or in whole, by a Catholic Church that views it as a grave sin.

For the record I am telling YOU any of YOU who continue to argue that there is a Republican War on Women and a woman’s “right” to contraception that you are either stupid, impossibly ill-informed, or so hateful and bias in your political views that intelligent discussion with you is pointless. Move on. Don’t talk to me.

I find the whole subject remarkable in its divisiveness. Fifty years after creation of “the pill” and forty years after Roe vs. Wade this country won’t allow itself a sensible middle ground on reproductive rights because neither political side is willing to budge from their extreme positions; positions the vast majority of this country find unacceptable. Pro-Choice advocates want abortion on demand up to and including the partial birth of a living human baby. In other words they continue to advocate infanticide for convenience purposes. Outrageous!

Nearly, but not quite, as outrageous is the Pro-Life position that life begins at conception; that a fertilized egg represents life. Take that fertilized egg out of the womb and see how long it lives, and by what means its given nutrition. Answer those questions and you clearly don’t have life without the woman, the mother. Thus her rights remain paramount.

Neither Pro-life nor Pro-Choice can agree on what seems abundantly obvious to me. Life begins neither at conception, nor at birth, but somewhere in between. And since we’re talking about a LIFE, an individual, and all the God-given and Constitutional rights there-in bestowed upon that individual and the Federal Government’s required protection of that individual’s rights; shouldn’t we error on the side of protecting that life?

If a Pro-choice advocate says that a crying, wiggling baby not more than sixty seconds into the open air from their mother’s birth canal is Constitutionally protected and given rights under our Federal Constitution but that same PERSON had zero rights 61-seconds earlier…that’s just plain and simply unacceptable both logically, morally, and legally.

The great statesman Patrick Henry correctly noted “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government.” So restraining a woman’s right to control her own reproduction system should only be imposed when those rights infringe upon the rights of another whose rights also deserve protecting.

So, though I’m Catholic,

Constitution of the United States of America

Constitution of the United States of America

I acknowledge we are not a theocracy and Catholics can’t impose their beliefs on the populace any more than Muslims can or should. Therefore contraception is and should always remain available. So should abortion up until its determined when life begins.

When life begins is a question beyond my pay grade, to use a phrase made famous by Barrack Obama when he successfully dodged the same question during the 2008 Presidential race. But any idiot can agree it occurs well before a natural, healthy birth following a nine month pregnancy.

Unlike other posts of mine I broach this dangerous subject not for the purpose of starting debate but with the sincere hope of ending it. Let logic and reason, not religion or emotion prevail.

Thanks for visiting. Comments are welcome.

Republicans are Stepping into Obama’s Bear Trap!

George Stephanopoulos

George Stephanopoulos

When George Stephanopoulos quizzically asked Mitt Romney whether state’s could ban contraception during an ABC News televised Republican Presidential Debate in January we were witnessing the first bear trap laid in the woods by the Obama administration in their hopes of having GOP Presidential candidates decisively put their foot in it. On that night Romney didn’t, in spite of Stephanopoulos’s dogged effort to get him to do so. He was clearly stunned by the question and saw no relevance in it.

Mitt Romney at one of his presidential campaig...

GOP front-runner Mitt Romney

He adeptly avoided committing himself to a dangerous anti-contraception, anti-woman position from which Obama would string him from a tree like a hunting prize.

Unfortunately since that time Republicans have repeatedly put their foot squarely in the steel jaws of Obama’s Machiavellian plot. Once again Obama has proven himself to be one of the most thoroughly cut-throat politicians ever to occupy the White House. Chicago trained him well.

Shortly after Stephanopoulos’ covert opening volley, Obama announced the H-H-S plan to have church owned organizations, specifically the Catholic church,

St. Peter's Basilica at Early Morning

St. Peter's Basilica

supply contraception and the morning-after pill to their workers free of charge. AND THEN he quickly amended the policy to make it so the church’s insurance company’s paid for the contraception. In doing so Obama revealed his political motivation. He wanted to introduce the more extreme position as a track official would want to fire his starting gun to signal that runners should begin running. He wanted the debate, the fight. Again, he put politics ahead of country, dividing our country and creating controversy where none existed. He tailored his argument, and coached his Democratic minions to make the argument about a woman’s right to have contraception.

Should the Catholic church have contraception prohibited from the insurance coverage of all its employees in their churches, hospitals, colleges and universities no woman would be denied contraception. Those church employees could still get contraception on their own; they could still buy their own private insurance policies; they could choose to work for some company or organization that has beliefs and policies in line with their values and that does provide contraception coverage; and as shocking as this suggestion may be they could choose to refrain from sex until such time as they are ready to have a child. (I’m not advocating any of these options. I’m just correctly pointing out that choices do exist. The fact that the choices for the individual may be less desirable than being given something for free is immaterial.)

U.S. Senate Republicans introduced a bill that would exempt churches AND private businesses from providing contraception or other medical procedures in their employees insurance coverage if the leader or leaders of the business have a religious or moral objection. The measure was narrowly defeated 51-49; for which I am grateful. The legislation was a tremendous over-reach by Republicans too distracted by a big steel clamp around their ankles. A trap engraved with Barrack Obama‘s signature.

English: Conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh

Conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh was also encumbered by the bear trap when he referred to a Georgetown University Law Student as a “slut” and a “prostitute”. The woman’s testimony before a Democratic Senate panel advocating free contraception WAS laughable. But in trying to laugh and make others laugh Limbaugh went too far and too crude, as he so often does. And he again turned the discussion back to a woman’s right to birth control rather than religious freedom.

It’s all so pathetic. I hope Romney continues to avoid the subject.

Mitt Romney presidential campaign, 2012

And all other Republicans should wise up and refuse to discuss the matter further. The media is Obama’s tool to manipulate and Republicans can’t win for losing. Any discussion of the matter will be turned by Democrats AND by the media into a false debate over birth control an argument Republicans will always lose. Let the Catholic church defend itself. It can. And it will. The Catholic church is the largest church in America and the richest church in the world. They are more than capable of winning a judicial fight over Obama’s CLEAR violation of the Bill of Right’s 1st Amendment.

Obama didn’t want a 1st Amendment fight. He wants to win an election. He can’t win talking about the economy or his record. So he divided the country and changed the subject. He laid a trap. Republicans stepped in it. And what’s really scary is that it won’t be Obama’s last trap. Let’s hope Republicans avoid the clumsiness they’ve displayed around this one.

Thanks for visiting. Comments are welcome.

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