Kavanaugh and Common Ground

The recently concluded U.S. Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Justice Brett Kavanaugh have ignited the passions of all Americans. Seldom in our nation’s history have political sides been so fiercely divided. Democrats strongly believe Kavanaugh didn’t belong on the nation’s highest court. They strongly believe he is guilty of sexually assaulting a 15 year old girl 37 years ago when he was 17 years old. Many have called him a rapist. Many believe his angry response to these charges disqualifies him because he demonstrated a temperament and a political bias that is inappropriate for serving as a judge let alone a Justice. Many believe he would over turn Roe vs Wade, the 45 year old Supreme Court ruling that legalized virtually all abortions throughout the land, and because of this he is unqualified for the Court. These are Democrat’s beliefs. And it makes no difference how wrong YOU think these beliefs are. It’s clear Democrats are immovable in these beliefs. Polls show no other demographic is the determining factor in whether a person finds Kavanaugh qualified or not. Not age, race, sexual orientation, income, geographic location. Nothing but your political affiliation determines whether you think Kavanaugh is guilty of the cruel charges against him. If you vote Democrat you believe his confirmation to be a travesty.

Republicans believe Kavanaugh was wronged and smeared with lies and exaggerations in a calculated character assassination designed to derail his Supreme Court nomination. They point to the fact that no charge against him is any newer or fresher than 35 years ago. Republicans point to accuser’s inability to produce evidence or corroborating witnesses. They point to Kavanaugh’s lifetime of service in government and in community service and his wonderful family. They believe him to be a good man.

As this is written we are 3 days from his confirmation being solidified and the storm has not quelled yet. Democratic politicians even talk of opening investigations into the recent claims that date back 30+ years and of impeaching the Justice. Samuel Chase, an original signatory of the Declaration of Independence is the only Supreme Court Justice to ever be impeached. The U.S. House voted for impeachment in 1805. The Senate acquitted the Associate Justice that same year.

It’s hard to fathom where we go from here. Division is so firm right now. But this Republican hopes to invoke the words of three Democrats in this writing in the hopes of beginning a mending of this country. Few things politically have upset me to the degree this matter has and while I think it would be easy to point fingers at the Left for their tactics in the Kavanaugh case, there is no getting around the fact that the Left is firm in its belief. So continuing to try and change their mind amounts to pounding ones head against brick. They would say the same of the Right.

In 1963 President John F. Kennedy said: “So, let us not be blind to our differences–but let us also direct attention to our common interests and to the means by which those differences can be resolved. And if we cannot end now our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity. For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.”

It was in the context of world peace. But’s its cry for togetherness applies very much to today.

It was during his 1961 inaugural address that Kennedy said, “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.” 

In 1988 defeated Democratic Presidential candidate Jesse Jackson addressed the Democratic National Convention in a stem winding speech where he repeatedly invoked the phrase “Common Ground”. “Common Ground! That is the challenge to our party tonight. Left wing. Right wing. Progress will come not through boundless liberalism nor static conservatism, but at the critical mass of mutual survival. It takes two wings to fly. The Bible teaches that when lions and the lambs can lie down together and none will be afraid, there will be peace in the valley. Common ground. American is not a blanket, woven from one thread, one color, one cloth. “

And in 2004 a State Senator from Illinois spoke at the Democratic National Convention about Red states and Blue states:

Three Democrats. One theme. We are all bound together and we all can achieve more when we work together.

Togetherness and love for one another is the only answer. It’s important for everyone of us to learn disagreement is not hate. Agreement is not love. Love is love. And we need a lot more of it.

So where can Americans find common ground:

Do we all want health for ourselves and especially our children?

Do we all want our politics free from corruption and graft.

Do we all want reduced crime in all forms?

Do we all want peace in the world and to remain free of war?

Do we all want safe, dependable roads and bridges?

Do we all want police forces that keep us safe and that don’t abuse their power?

Do we all want opportunity to pursue happiness as we define it?

Do we all want clean air and water?

Do we all want to eliminate the threat of global terrorism?

Yes is the answer to all these questions. And there are so many more that given time and some help I could list.

I’ve said many times, you and I are being manipulated. Sometimes its obvious and often it is more subtle. But both sides do it. Republicans and Democrats make crises out of whole clothe in order to incite the passions of their followers for the purpose of gaining money and votes. Be aware of this, sensitive to it, and reject it when you see it.

The American people have it within our own powers to end the hate and move forward happily toward a brighter future. Through volunteerism, charitable donations, and voting for political candidates who reject rank manipulation, corruption and graft we can put into power more honorable men and women. We’re capable. 17 years ago in the wake of 9-11 who would have ever thought a black man with a Muslim father and name would be a two term President of the United States? Two year ago who successfully predicted a vain, loud, egomaniac TV personality and businessman would be elected to the same office?

To get to the point where we can foster the type of political leaders we need to stop calling names and presuming each others motives. As pointed out above, we all want pretty much the same things. We all can share common ground on nearly all issues. We just need to better figure how to get there. Founding father Benjamin Franklin was renowned for his wisdom and ability to find compromise. He also said, “Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.” 

LET’S GET STARTED.

Stop the Hate, Please. Opposition voters are just like those you Love.

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When Barrack Obama was re-elected I was dismayed and sad. I honestly couldn’t believe that the majority of Americans fell for the lies the media and his administration were putting out, and they couldn’t look at the condition of our country and want to make a change. I couldn’t understand not electing a kind, high-achieving moderate Republican over a President who had failed to bring the country together, and in fact drove it further apart, and whose economic record proved incapable of pulling us out of a deep recession and probably elongating it.

I did all I could to convey my strong feelings in support of Mitt Romney and in opposition to Barrack Obama. I lost a few friends I suspect who had considerably more liberal views.

But after the election I withdrew from posting any political commentary, articles, memes, etc. I was disgusted and sad and mystified but I kept my mouth shut.

He's the best of our bad choices.

He was the best of our bad choices.

We’re now more than one week from the election of Donald Trump as President. But the hate against him hasn’t stopped. It seems to be growing and it certainly has spread. Now, according to the disappointed Hillary voters, this whole country is RACIST, and Misogynistic, and hateful. Social media is rampant with hateful and arrogant comments.

My response: REALLY? What are you thinking? You think the HATE is coming from our side? REALLY?

Casting aspersions to your Friends and Followers on Facebook and Twitter and elsewhere does nothing to advance the beliefs you claim to aspire toward. Is it correct to say you, the Hillary voter, seek unity, tolerance of different people, races, religions, sexual preferences? Is this tolerance limited to only those who believe like you do? Is this desire for unity a true wish, just as long as we keep the Conservatives and the Bible thumpers, and the “old-fashioned” out?

What I don’t get and refuse to tolerate is the fact that each and every one of us knows and loves and cares for people who vote differently politically. Hard-Right Republicans and/or Conservatives have a brother or a sister or a friend or a wife or a mom or a dad who advocates for Liberal Democratic ideas. Every Left-Wing Socialist loving Democrat loves and cares for and possibly works with another who votes and believes just the opposite.

So why do you want to hurt that person or persons? Why do you want to question their character? If their character is so bad why do you love them? Stop it! Love them as you always have. But recognize, you’re hurting them when you call them racist or hateful. You’re not caring for them when you call them whining, cry babies for not liking the results of the election.

If you love someone who thinks and votes differently than you, why can’t you recognize that others who voted like they did might be just as loving, and sweet, and fun as the person you love. Because…they are.

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Tired of the Hate

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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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Gay marriage offers a moral litmus test – Spokesman.com – May 12, 2012

 

Barack Obama delivers a speech at the Universi...

“Don’t be misled: Opposing sin has nothing to do with how we treat other people. Disapproving someone’s behavior should never stop us from treating them with respect and encouraging what is best for them. Ask any parent whether it’s possible to oppose harmful behavior yet love a person dearly.”

32 times states have been asked to vote on Gay marriage and 32 times voters have affirmed that marriage is between a man and a woman. But President Obama says he knows better…again.

This well written commentary may fly in the face of pop culture and populism, but its a very good read for those who call themselves Christian.

Gay marriage offers a moral litmus test – Spokesman.com – May 12, 2012.

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