Category Archives: American Society

My Thoughts on the Election of Donald J. Trump as President of the United States

untitled-435

“I pledge to every citizen of our lands that I will be the president for the American people. For those who have chosen not to support me in the past . . . I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so we can work together and unify our great country.”

 

As the clock moved from 8:00 to 9 to 10:00 p.m. and then all the way past midnight to 1:00 in the morning, I could see the dream that I and millions of other Americans shared of a Hillary Clinton Presidency—the first woman President—come crumbling and then eventually crashing down.  I wanted this woman—whom I know in my heart—to be a kind, caring, and compassionate person—I wanted this extraordinarily talented brilliant woman to be our President and to usher in a time of greater understanding and greater tolerance for all.  Let me not understate the degree to which I believed in Hillary Clinton and in her commitment to the American people—especially to those who have not been able to share in the American dream.  I—like so many of you—am devastated by the Clinton loss and the Trump win.

 

Having said all that, however, I am determined to make my grieving process just as short as possible.  I was despondent for a full 6 hours as I stayed glued to my TV screen, surfing the news channels—looking in vain for the glimmers of hope to miraculously transform themselves into a narrow Clinton victory.  Such was not to be the case, however.  Miracles were in very short supply, and those miracles that were in the air, were captured and enjoyed by the Donald Trump supporters.  By 1:30 a.m., I had seen and heard all that I needed to realize that Donald Trump was to be our 45th President of the United States.

 

As I awakened this morning just before 7:00 a.m., the news from Charlie and Nora and Gayle—along with that of Chris Cuomo—confirmed my worst fears and the certainty of Donald Trump’s election.  Yet, having said all that, I refuse to dwell on recriminations.  I refuse to linger on the what-if’s.  I refuse to excoriate Mr. Trump and his legion of supporters.  I know and you all know too many people—colleagues, facebook friends, relatives—who love our country and are intelligent, caring  people—who voted for Mr. Trump.  Some did so unabashedly or with pride, and others did so despite some serious reservations.

untitled-447

For me, even now, it is time to begin to pick myself up and begin to move on.  For me it is time to pull together whatever fibers that I have of a resilient personality and move on.  For me, it is time to do what I had urged the Republicans to do 8 years ago when Barack Obama was elected.  That is, to realize that our nation—as a whole—has spoken.  We have elected a President that for the next four years will serve as the President of ALL of the people.  As much as it may pain us, we need to do what we urged the Republicans to do 8 years ago:  give him a chance.  Look for common ground in ways to improve our country and the lives of its people—including especially those who have undergone intolerance, prejudice, and economic and social despair.

 

I began this essay with Donald Trump’s pledge, last night, to all Americans.  I repeat that here because it is the focus of this piece:

 

“I pledge to every citizen of our lands that I will be the president for the American people. For those who have chosen not to support me in the past . . . I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so we can work together and unify our great country.

 

I am taking Mr. Trump at his word—that he actually wants our guidance and help.  I choose to believe that because I do believe in the innate goodness of human beings—even those who have made the jarring, hateful remarks that have characterized the campaign of Donald Trump.  I do believe—or I choose to believe that each of us–including Donald Trump—has the capacity to listen to the “better angels of our nature” and to act on those noble instincts.  I also believe in both the ego and the determination of Mr. Trump.  Sure, those characteristics have deservedly raised more than a few red flags, but they also offer some hope.  I am convinced that Donald Trump wants—even now—to take his place in history as one of the greatest U.S. Presidents of all.  He wants to be remembered as the President who cared about all the people, who rebuilt our infrastructure, who supported our veterans.  Last night he said, the following:

 

untitled-425

 

“Every single American will have the ability to realize their fullest potential. The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer. We are going to fix our inner cities and rebuild our highways, schools, hospitals. We will rebuild our infrastructure. Which will become second to none, and we will put millions of our people to work as we rebuild it.

 

 

We will also finally take care of our great veterans who have been so loyal and I’ve gotten to know so many over this 18-month journey. The time that I have taken with them I consider among my greatest honors. We will embark upon a project of American growth and renewal. We will call upon the best and the brightest to leverage our tremendous talent to benefit all.

 

untitled-467

 

If he means what he says, and in this instance, I am hopeful that he does, then his ego, his determination, his perseverance, and his tenacity may lead him to become a far better President than we could have imagined.  In any case, for now, I am—for a time—willing to suspend my disbelief, take him at his word, and offer him a few words of “guidance”—just as he requested.

 

  1. Look forward, not back. Forget the cries of “Lock her up” and realize that months or years of charges and investigations into Hillary Clinton and the Clinton foundation serve no one, anger the nearly 50 percent of Americans who supported Secretary Clinton, and distract you, the government, and the American people from the real challenges that we face in our country.

 

 

  1. Surround yourself with really good people. Make your litmus test be that they must be not only people who have strong convictions, but they must be people of strong character—people with good hearts.  Seek out people who have great intelligence, but also great wisdom and a healthy measure of common sense.  And make sure that there are a reasonable number of individuals whom you respect, but may have differing views than your own on our nation’s challenges.  They must be people who will not be afraid to clearly express those conflicting views—people to whom you will actively listen.

 

 

  1. Do not scrap the Affordable Care Act—Obamacare—in its entirety.  Get rid of those parts that are not working, if you must, but keep the parts that are important to the American people.  Keep the parts about pre-existing conditions, the parts about limits, about keeping young people on their parent’s insurance until 26, the parts about free preventative services, and limits on health insurance payout.  Keep all the good parts that really are benefitting our people.

 

untitled-424

 

  1. Search the Senate and the House of Representative for five Republicans and five Democrats that are highly respected and valued by the entire legislature and the American people. They must be people who are valued for their character, their creativity, their intelligence, and their ability and proclivity to compromise—to compromise with others to come up with real workable solutions to    Sit these people down in a room and let them tackle the great problems of our day—and agree to abide by their eventual conclusions.  One month they would confront immigration, for example, and work to come up with the best possible plan.  The next month, they might tackle health care.  The month after that—infrastructure needs.

 

 

 

  1. Realize that you—as President of the United States—are a role model for every child and every adult in our country. Please act like it.  You may have set some less than stellar examples in the past (surely an understatement, at best), but the past does not need to be prologue.  Your past comments and actions need not determine your future behavior.  You can begin weighing your words more carefully, noting that words DO, in fact, matter.  You can stop the insults.  As I and others have always insisted, before you say anything, ask yourself two questions:  Is it true? and Is it kind? And if the answer is “No,” then simply don’t say it.

 

 

  1. Be very cautious of trusting Vladamir Putin or any of a number of other leaders of countries with whom we have adversarial relationships. Take the full measure of a person by looking at their past behavior and deeds, meeting and talking with them, and also listening to what I hope and trust will be a diverse cadre of experienced, knowledgeable, trusted advisors of high character.

 

untitled-491

 

  1. Make every possible effort to understand the needs, the problems, and the gifts of various groups in our society—women, people of color, immigrants, people of all religions, all nationalities, elder Americans. Reach out to them; sit down with them; listen—really listen–and then work to better the lives of all of those people. Work to end sexism, racism, prejudice in our society.  Help all to live better lives.  And don’t forget our youngest Americans—infants and toddlers.   Provide for their needs, as well, including universal preschool and quality daycare for parents who need it.  As a father, you are aware of the needs of children of every age—including teenagers and young adults.  Do all you can to strengthen schools, encourage and support good teachers, promote an atmosphere of learning, and provide the best possible education for every single child.

 

 

  1. Develop and implement a plan to successfully deal with an opiate crisis which is a scourge on our country and all its families. We all know someone whose lives have been tragically impacted by opioid abuse.  Surely we can put steps in place to curb opioid use, and to help those whose lives have been diminished or destroyed by the use of these drugs.

 

 

 

  1. Support those who risk their lives for our country—our military, or police, our firefighters. Help our veterans as they return from service.

 

untitled-437

 

11.   Protect the environment.  Visit our National and State Parks and other natural areas to see their glory:  Bryce Canyon, Horseshoe Bend, Antelope Canyon, Acadia, Denali, Rocky Mt. National Park, The Grand Canyon, the Smoky Mountains, Yosemite, the Everglades, the Badlands, the Painted Desert, and so many more.  Realize that we would never have these areas today for our families had not Teddy Roosevelt and other Presidents protected them for our children.  They will not be there tomorrow–nor the Elk, the Grizzlies, the Wolves–unless you and Congress protect them!  And Climate Change?  It’s real and its a threat to our future unless you and other world leaders work together to make changes which will improve the situation.

 

 

 

12.  Be the kind of leader that we need–the kind who truly brings us together–because, as you know, we are so divided right now!  Appear frequently on television to sit down with us and really TALK to us.  Tell us what you’re thinking–and why.  Be honest with us.  Encourage us when we need encouragement.  Console us when we need consolation.  Keep making every possible effort to bring us together, even when it gets tough.  Do the kinds of things that will reassure ALL of us that you are listening, and that you HEAR us.  When Americans ask you to seriously consider common sense gun control legislation, at least listen with an open mind.  When you hear the other side talk about the importance of the Iran Nuclear treaty, at least listen to their points of view before deciding.  When people protest, invite a few of them in to hear their real concerns.

 

untitled-492

 

If you can do that, Mr. Trump, you WILL, in fact,  go down in history as one of our greatest Presidents—a President who brought people together, who worked to really improve the lives of ALL of our citizens.

 

 

With all my heart, Mr. President-elect, I wish you the best.  I wish you courage, compassion, strength, and wisdom.  Your success will be our success.  Godspeed, and God bless.

 

 

Sincerely,

Mitchell R.Grosky

Athol, Massachusetts

 

 

 

 

 

.

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under American Society, News, Politics, World

Chelsea Clinton Speaks on Behalf of Her Mother, Sec. Hillary Clinton, and Clinton Supporter Interviews at Keene, NH

 untitled-99

Last Friday, November 4, I visited Keene State College in southern New Hampshire for a “Get Out the Vote” event where I heard Chelsea Clinton speak passionately in support of her mother, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, to an audience consisting of both college students and older adults.  Ms. Clinton emphasized that the stakes are very high in the Presidential election on Tuesday of this week.  She stressed that all of the following issues are “on the ballot” in this election:  science, college and graduate school affordability, a woman’s right to make her own decisions, protecting marriage equality, raising the minimum wage, equal pay for equal work (with an emphasis on both women and Americans with disabilities), criminal justice reform, gun violence prevention, the heroin and opioid overdose epidemic, and the suicide epidemic.

africa-1-3b

The photos here  and on my facebook site ( http://tinyurl.com/hbzqd6x )   give a good portrait of Chelsea Clinton.  To hear a portion of her speech, please click on the following link to a video I published for “This Week With Mitch Grosky,” my political and social commentary blog:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LQJt6ynTCFk&feature=share

I am honored that my blog and accompanying videos have been viewed by over one hundred thousand people from across the United States and from such foreign countries as France, the United Kingdom, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Italy, Egypt, Singapore, Norway, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Romania, and Guatemala

africa-3

In addition, the video features six interviews I conducted with Hillary Clinton supporters in attendance at the event.  They were asked three questions:  1. Why do you support Hillary Clinton for President?  2. Why do you think that it is essential for our country to elect Hillary Clinton as its President?  3. Did you ever consider voting for Donald Trump?  Why or why not?

This election may be the most important one in our lifetimes.  Please, vote–and vote for the person who will bring character, compassion, intelligence, wisdom, and experience to the office of President of the United States.

Leave a comment

Filed under American Society, News, Politics, World

Michelle Obama’s Powerful Speech on Women

michelle-obama-creative-commons-2

First Lady Michelle Obama (Courtesy of Creative Commons)

 

I just watched, once again on MSNBC,  Michelle Obama’s incredibly powerful speech in New Hampshire about women and about the comments and actions of Donald Trump against women. The speech was magnificent — AND historic.   It was a speech for the ages–much like Hillary Clinton’s famous speech about Women’s rights being Human rights.

The First Lady’s speech was more than an emotional diatribe against Donald Trump and his views of and actions against women. It was a profound denunciation of the attitudes that some men, some societies, even some women have held against women in our society and our world–against their rights, against their character, against their roles in society (some chosen and some forced), against their very beings. It was a powerful condemnation of the way that so many women are treated by men–especially men in powerful positions.

She stood up for women and spoke directly to them–with a shared knowledge and experience. She spoke not only of women, but also of men who were outraged at the sexism and misogyny and discrimination they have seen throughout this campaign and throughout their lives. She stood up for the daughters and sons in America and across the world. And I was proud–so proud of her–as First Lady, as a woman, as a leader. In one extraordinary speech, she said so much about women–what they live with, what they have to overcome, what they indeed HAVE overcome, what they can achieve and what they HAVE achieved.

The speech should be played and replayed, over and over, for appropriate audiences–young men and women, and those older, as well. And let us hope and pray–and aspire to a day sometime in the very near future, when we will not need to re-play this speech because women will have achieved full equality–in the boardroom, in the home, and in society–and, most importantly, in the way they are spoken about and TREATED by all people–men and women–each and every day.

NOTE:  To view the entire speech by First Lady Michelle Obama (courtesy of Vox), please click on the following link:  Michelle Obama’s Speech

Leave a comment

Filed under American Society, News, World

New Hampshire: Standing Up and Speaking Out for Hillary Clinton!

hillary-1

hillary-3

hillary-6

hillary-4

On September 28, I spent the day covering the Hillary Clinton/Bernie Sanders Campaign Appearance at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, NH. for my political/social issues blog “This Week With Mitch Grosky.” In addition to taking over 500 photos, I also conducted brief interviews with a number of the people there.  After being addressed by a number of college officials and state officials, Governor Maggie Hassan (now running for Senator) spoke to the crowd.

maggie

Governor Maggie Hassan

She was followed by the entrance of Secretary Clinton and Senator Sanders.

bernie-and-hillary-2

Secretary Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders Enter Together to Loud Cheers and Enthusiastic Applause

Bernie Sanders spoke first, speaking of the importance of electing Hillary Clinton as President. He also spoke about some of the issues–education, climate change, minimum wage, and others–that they share in common.

bernie-and-hillary

Senator Bernie Sanders

Then Hillary Clinton spoke about some of these same issues, as well as the importance of universal pre-Kindergarten (pre-school), spending most of her time addressing the theme of the day: “Debt Free College.”

hillary-2

This is her education plan which would dramatically reduce college costs for most students. The plan calls for making public colleges and universities tuition-free for families who earn less than $125,000 per year, making community college free for all students, and helping students to significantly lower their current debt by refinancing at lower interest rates.

hillary-5

After speeches by Senator Sanders and Secretary Clinton, there was a panel discussion or Question and Answer session in which both featured speakers answered pre-selected questions from the audience about their plans for education reform. The enthusiastic full-capacity crowd of 1,200 seemed to really enjoy both the speeches and the bonus question and answer session.

hillary-7

I was struck by a couple of things:

 First of all, it was easy to discern and appreciate the real excitement in the audience as people waited in line to enter with eager anticipation, and as they actually listened carefully to the speeches of the afternoon–especially those of Secretary Hillary Clinton, U.S.Senator Bernie Sanders, and Governor Maggie Hassan.

Secondly, I was impressed that the people there expressed nearly universal approval of and strong praise for Hillary Clinton.   Sometimes when people look on facebook or on the various news programs, they get the impression that everyone sees this election as a choice between the “lesser of two evils.”  That was certainly NOT the case here.  These are people who strongly believe in Hillary Clinton, who deeply admire who she is and all that she has accomplished in the past approximately 30 years.  These are people who enthusiastically support her and are totally committed to her.

In each brief interview that I conducted, I focused on two major questions.  First of all, I asked, “Are you here to support Hillary Clinton or to make up your mind?”  In nearly every single case–including those involving former Bernie Sanders supporters–I found that people had already made a firm commitment to support Hillary Clinton.

Secondly, once they acknowledged that they were already supporting Secretary Clinton, I asked them, “Could you give me a couple of reasons why you feel that she is the best candidate for President?”  People voiced strong opinions in support of the former First Lady, Senator, and Secretary of State.  What follows are excerpts from some of the conversations which I had with well over a dozen supporters.

clai

Clai from West Berlin, New Hampshire

I see a woman who is brilliant, knows policy inside and out, and who cares for everyone around her. . . She came out at the beginning of her campaign talking about (reasonable gun limitations) when nobody else did, and she’s met with survivors (of gun violence) all over the country in small groups . . . it’s on her agenda.”  –Clai from West Berlin, New Hampshire

********************

deb

Deb from North Hampton, New Hampshire

“I’m here as a volunteer, for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, and we’re concerned about the gun violence that’s taking the lives of over 30,000 Americans per day, and Hillary has come out and said that she’s going to fight the NRA and fight for sensible gun laws, and Donald Trump has not said that, so I’m very much supporting Hillary for that reason. . . Here in New Hampshire, there are a lot of gun owners, and there’s no reason that the second amendment can’t go hand-in-hand with sensible gun laws.” –Deb from North Hampton, New Hampshire

********************

veronica-2

Veronica from Cambridge, Massachusetts

“Her message ‘Stronger Together’—I firmly and confidently believe in that.  She’s all for getting our country together—something I firmly believe and I think that’s what we need today, especially with all that’s going on.  The world is a scary place, and thinking about Trump ruling our nation scares me to death.  It took me a while to come to Hillary, but I strongly believe in her message, ‘Stronger Together.’”–Veronica from Cambridge, Massachusetts

********************

“I’ve been a supporter of hers for like 15 years . . . I lived in New York; I volunteered on her staff and so on . . .  I feel that she brings a view and she understands the problems that are going on in the community, and I think she will do so much better than Donald.  I mean Donald is very upsetting because he’s spouting bigotry . . . he’s spouting separation.  It’s just amazing the things that he’s said.  He makes me feel that he doesn’t feel sorry for the words he’s expressing. . . He’s saying things that some people feel, and they’ve been afraid to say—whether (those things) are right or wrong.  He’s given them carte blanche to say those things . . . and it’s very scary because you have a population that might THINK those things about their neighbor, but he’s expressed it so (it seems like it’s) OK to say those things.” –Denise from Roxbury, Massachusetts

********************

allison

Allison, Executive Editor of “The New Hampshire,” the School Newspaper at UNH—from West Hartford, CT

“I am neutral right now.  What’s important to me is that the students are educated (about) the candidates and that we get as many students as we can out there to vote on Election Day. . . The biggest issue that I’m interested in is education. I’ve always been really interested in education, and I’m listening to what the candidates have to say about student debt . . . This is not something that is on the forefront of most people’s minds, so it is our responsibility to make sure that issue is covered, and that we’re voting in favor of what’s best for our generation —Allison, Executive Editor of “The New Hampshire,” the School Newspaper at UNH—from West Hartford, CT

********************

natalie

Natalie, originally from New Hampshire but now living in Florida

“I’m here in support of Hillary Clinton.  I think she’s fantastic.  I’ve been following her for years.  I think she’s absolutely brilliant.  For me, personally, it would be the ACA (Affordable Care Act or Obamacare), but it’s having a first woman President . . . it’s huge; I mean we have to break that barrier . .  . everything that the Democrats stand for, quite frankly, and what the Republicans are against.”  She indicated that she was “not at all” impressed by Donald Trump—“It’s very scary; we can’t have that; we just can’t have that . . . I think he’s dangerous; I think he would take us down financially.  I think he would promote hatred, and other countries would be coming against us, and we would bear that—that hate and that burden.  The Supreme Court is also at stake; we’re looking at 3-4 Supreme Court seats – the next 20 years . . . I have zero confidence in Donald Trump (in making those appointments), and I’m terrified quite frankly.  –Natalie, originally from New Hampshire but now living in Florida

********************

keith

Keith from Kennebunk, Maine.

“I’m already in support of Hillary Clinton.  She’s good for jobs.  She’s good for the colleges.  She‘s good for the college students.  She’s good for a lot of issues that the American people are concerned about.  I’m not interested in Donald Trump’s candidacy; I think he’s a farce.  He talks a lot.  Big talk, but I don’t think he can put anything behind his words. . . I don’t believe him; he’s lying to the American people.”  –Keith from Kennebunk, Maine.

********************

chad

Chad from Ipswich, Massachusetts

“Those are the two reasons (that I’m supporting Hillary Clinton)—daughter number one and daughter number two –those are the number one and two reasons that I’m supporting Hillary Clinton. (The fact that she’s a woman) is important to me because it’s kind of unprecedented.  We’ve seen our first African-American President, and that’s amazing, and it would be nice to see . . . a woman, and it’s not a party trick in my mind.  I think that she is the most qualified person for this job, and the fact that she’s a woman is really icing on the cake.  There are only a handful (of her positions) that I have any disagreement with her about.”  He indicated the following as important issues for him:  “The issue of racial equality; that tops for me right now.  The environment is tops for me right now.  Not as much for me the story of the economy.  I’ve lived in a lot of countries in the world, and I know what world economy is, and it takes a little bit of perspective to understand what economy is like in this country.  Granted I’m a somewhat privileged person, but even with that, it’s hard to compare poverty in Guatemala and Haiti to what everyday working class people are feeling in the United States.  But I will say that over the last 8 years, we’ve seen a whole lot of positive change that we never saw in the previous 8 years.”  He indicated that he “absolutely” liked that Hillary Clinton would continue the politics of Barack Obama. . . “I’m very much aligned with the ideology of Barack Obama, and Bernie—absolutely Bernie, as well.  Gun control, by the way, is also right up there on the list. . . I think we just need reasonable gun control. It’s obvious.  It’s sensible.  You go anyplace else in the world and people talk about the United States.  (They ask) Does everyone carry a gun? Do you have to fear for your life when you walk down the street?  The answer is no, but that fear is there for a reason, and you spend time in other developed world countries and they don’t have the same issues we have . . .”             —Chad from Ipswich, Massachusetts

********************

sylvia

Sylvia from Salem, Massachusetts

“I’ve made up my mind (to support Hillary)–since 2008.  Experience, Brilliance, Commitment. -–Sylvia from Salem, Massachusetts

********************

ted

–Ted from Durham, New Hampshire

“I’m supporting Hillary.  I’ve been a Democrat most of my life, so that’s part of it, but I also think that I’m not so much afraid of Donald as I am of the image that he portrays, and the ability for the rest of this country to look at that and have bad behavior because of it.  He noted that the image he projects to the rest of the world “is even scarier.  .  . the lack of respect for all human beings and the inclusiveness that he rejects . . .”  –Ted from Durham, New Hampshire

********************

bill

Bill from Durham, New Hampshire

“I’m supporting Hillary Clinton.  She’s far more experienced and she knows what’s she’s doing whereas I don’t really like Donald Trump.  What about Donald Trump particularly bothers me?  Oh, let’s see:  the fact of his bigotry, the fact that he once went on record saying that he wouldn’t mind dating his own daughter, the fact that he went over to Scotland and kicked people off their land using . . . eminent domain. . . In addition to that, he led basically a lynch mob against the Central Park Four who were accused of assault.”  —Bill from Durham, New Hampshire.

********************

jared

Jared from Exeter, New Hampshire

“I’m supporting Hillary Clinton.  I agree with most of her plans, and I think she’s a strong leader, who can cross beyond party borders.  I support most of her social plans, like I support  the LGBT community and the Black community especially.”  –Jared from Exeter, New Hampshire

********************

menat

Menat from Exeter, New Hampshire

“I’m supporting Hillary Clinton.  I think Hillary has more of the majority of the people around our country’s  needs in mind—over Trump, and that’s the way I think our next President should be.  I think there’s a lot of unemployment currently . . . she has plans like implementing solar panels that will solve two problems in one—to make sure we have clean energy as well as employing more people. . . I think Donald Trump has this certain mindset that the top one percent of our country has, and that’s just not the majority of the thoughts and opinions of the people in our country, and I don’t think that the President should represent just the top one percent.”  Menat from Exeter, New Hampshire

********************

More Faces in the Crowd at the University of New Hampshire Event for Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders

for Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders

untitled-8untitled-486untitled-484untitled-483untitled-481untitled-480untitled-479untitled-478untitled-477untitled-337untitled-336untitled-331

untitled-292untitled-293

untitled-332

untitled-294untitled-295untitled-296untitled-298

untitled-306untitled-307untitled-308untitled-313untitled-314untitled-318untitled-320untitled-325untitled-334untitled-335untitled-454

untitled-342

untitled-326

untitled-333

For over 300 MORE photographs of Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Maggie Hassan, and Others at this event, please check me out on facebook at Hillary and Bernie Visit UNH!

Leave a comment

Filed under American Society, News, Politics, World

LIBERTARIAN CANDIDATE GARY JOHNSON STRIKES OUT!

 

garyjohnsonphoto_-_modified

Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson (Courtesy of Creative Commons)

 

LIBERTARIAN CANDIDATE GARY JOHNSON STRIKES OUT!

 

Strike Three on Gary Johnson! OK, I was just trying to figure out how 8-13 percent of Americans are voting for this person who could not name even ONE world leader he admires. He simply could not think of a single name. Not that he dislikes all world leaders, he just said that he was having an “Aleppo moment.” That refers to an interview a couple of weeks ago when he did not know what Aleppo (the largest city in Syria) was. So, if his inability to identify Aleppo is STRIKE ONE, then his inability to come up with the name of any world leader he admires would be STRIKE TWO. So, you may ask, what is STRIKE THREE?

 

Well, as I was posting my photos of the Clinton/Sanders appearance at UNH onto facebook,  I turned on Colbert on late night TV. He had this 6-7 minute piece where he attacked/ridiculed the Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson. Yes, he mentioned the Aleppo moment and also the more recent failure to remember the name of a world leader he admires. But then he showed this interview conducted on a park bench a week ago in which Gary Johnson stuck out his tongue and kept talking.

 

It was so ridiculous that I figured that it must be a Colbert joke, played with some unknown comedian impersonating former Governor Johnson. So I googled “Gary Johnson interview on park bench” and there it was—unbelievable. In trying to demonstrate, I guess, that if he could just get into the debates, he would automatically improve in the polls just because people would see him next to the major candidates–even if he spoke with his tongue out.

 

Now first a warning: this video–courtesy of MSNBC and youtube–is bizarre. You may want the children to leave the room before viewing this video clip, because honestly, this is simply NOT the way we expect a Presidential candidate–or really any mature adult to behave. But, please, make up your own minds as you view this short video. Once again, to me, any one of “three strikes” would have disqualified a candidate in any previous Presidential campaign. To me, this is STRIKE THREE; you’re out, Gary Johnson! We can no longer consider you to be–in any way, shape, or form–to be a credible, reasonable candidate for President of the United States. Here is the link to the video:

 

http://www.newsmax.com/Politics/Gary-Johnson-Debates-Tongue-Out/2016/09/23/id/749781/

Leave a comment

Filed under American Society, News, Politics, World

In Memory of President John F. Kennedy

John_F_Kennedy_insert_public_domain

I was there–in Texas–no, not in Dallas, but in Austin, the next stop on President Kennedy’s trip through Texas. I was 12 years old then, and I not only deeply respected John Fitzgerald Kennedy as our nation’s President, but I truly believed that I loved him, as well, as a young, vibrant leader who would lead us into both the outer reaches of space as well as into a new prosperity in America. In my young, idealistic innocent mind and heart, he would almost singlehandedly lead us into a more kind, more just nation and world. The poverty of which I was just becoming aware would be no more. The prejudice and racism which I saw when I stared at the separate water fountains and restrooms at the pro wrestling (rasslin’) matches I attended monthly would dissipate and then vanish altogether–vestiges of another time and place as the new age of Camelot convinced so many of us that there really was a shining city and fleeting wisps of glory to come.

I was in seventh grade then—in junior high, and we were so excited, so absolutely thrilled to be getting out of school early to go to the parade in downtown Austin–the parade in which our President would smile that broad smile of his and offer us all a friendly, energetic wave–the parade which was–tragically–never to be. My brother Geoff–one year my junior (and my best friend, as well)–was the first to sense that something was amiss. As Austin was the capital city of Texas, Geoff was privileged to have Governor John Connally’s son in his sixth grade class, and when young Mark Connally was called suddenly and urgently from class, there was a sense that something was definitely wrong.

Hearing the news, I was stunned—we ALL were stunned and shocked and grief-stricken–beyond my ability to describe it. Dismissed early, we all went home to watch the tragedy unfold on the national news—black and white TV–but burned into our consciousness–believe me–in living color.

I remember the depth of emotion I felt in the days to come–the overwhelming sadness and despair–as we watched the assassin himself killed and then the funeral procession for the President, the salute by John-John, and then shared sad, bitter tears in the realization that not only was President Kennedy gone, but that somehow, things would never be the same again.

As a twelve-year-old who loved to write, my grief flowed from an aching heart just as surely and continuously as the ink in the cartridge pens we used in that day. I wrote the following words:

THE DEATH OF PRESIDENT JOHN F. KENNEDY
by Mitchell R. Grosky

Our leader has departed–
His heart, his soul gone too.
His memory will long remain
in everything we do.

Our lives, our dreams were shattered
on this outrageous day.
Our eyes are filled with tears;
Our President’s passed away.

He tried so hard for freedom–
for rights for one and all.
He tried to keep us happy;
How could this great man fall?

He tried to make our country
greater than ever before.
He tried to do all this.
Yet hatred sealed the door.

It was a beautiful morning–
More beautiful than ever before.
No one knew or had any idea
of what Fate held in store.

Suddenly three shots rang out,
and hit him in the head.
A short time afterwards,
our President was dead.

It must have been a madman
to do a thing like this!
His aim was sharp and careful;
His bullet did not miss.

An unforgivable act
was carried out this day.
The world is deep in sorrow;
our President’s passed away.

I remember the poem word for word, as my beloved mother had me repeat it verbatim so many times over the years for our relatives and her friends. As a retired English teacher, I look back at it with mixed feelings–the forced rhyme and curious, childlike wording all too evident to someone who spent his life focusing on the power and beauty of the written word.

Yet, as I recite the words once more–as I–and all of us–acknowledge the passing of 50 years since our President’s death, my eyes once again fill with the tears of a future that was never to be–of a President who though imperfect in many ways–still made us believe in ourselves and in a better America and a better world.

I think that I was raised to believe that we all must do our parts to make the world a better place, but–looking back–maybe it was this particular time in my life–this oh-so-sad time–that forced me to finally look in the mirror and to face a solemn truth. Perhaps that was the time that I first saw and accepted that it was OUR job–MY job and that of my three brothers and one sister–and all my friends who were growing all-too-quickly toward adulthood…..that it was our job to do something good and kind and decent–maybe even noble with our lives. The world should be a better place because one has lived–that’s the way one person said it.

That was the lesson I learned from one of the saddest days in my life–that we can–and we MUST–make a difference.

Don’t let it be forgot
That once there was a spot
For one brief shining moment that was known
As Camelot.

Whether Camelot was real,
or just was an illusion,
I can tell you that it was real
in the mind of this 12-year-old boy.
And so…
So many years later,
I thank President Kennedy for leaving that lesson–
that message to me
and to so many others throughout the world.

Leave a comment

Filed under American Society, Politics, Tributes, Uncategorized, World

Chris Matthews’ Well-Intentioned Apology

Image

This photo is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Well, Chris Matthews is getting attacked and pilloried all over the Twitter Universe today because he apologized on behalf of all white people for all the abuses that blacks have had to endure. His final remark in an interview in which his two very accomplished guests spoke about their bad experiences (prejudice, discrimination profiling, etc.) many years ago as young black men was the following:

“We have to continue this conversation, gentlemen, privately and on television….I mean, a lot of people out there — I will just tell you one thing. And I’m speaking now for all white people, but especially who have had to tried to change the last 50 or 60 years. And a lot of them have really tried to change….And I’m sorry for this stuff. That’s all I’m saying.”

NOTE:   Please see the link below for the entire transcript of his interview with Val Nicholas, vice president and creative director at NBC News, and former Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele.

My view, though a bit nuanced in some respects, is a dissenting one. Sure, I think it was presumptuous and inappropriate for Chris Matthews to say he was speaking for all white people. He went too far; he should have just apologized (if he felt it necessary to do so) for himself. He could have added (if he wished) that there are many other white people who feel as he does. That would be an accurate statement.

Speaking for myself, I know that our treatment of black Americans is one of the stains on our history–as is our treatment of native Americans (still called Indians by some Americans). Slavery and the later Jim Crow laws were an abomination–as are the vestiges of slavery–the civil rights struggles, subtle and blatant discrimination, prejudice, and profiling. I wish with all my heart that it had never happened–that it were not happening STILL today. I wish that it were NOT true that far too many black children are born into poverty, and that others who are born into better circumstances still experience racism–as children, teenagers, and even as successful adults in all walks of life. Yet, unfortunately, it IS true–prejudice still exists and for the black child and adult, it is often ubiquitous. It exists at every level of society.

Is EVERYONE prejudiced? Of course not! I know that I and so many–so very many–of my friends, family, colleagues, and acquaintances strongly believe in—and PRACTICE–judging people NOT by their color (or their religion or their ethnic origin) but by the content of their character. As a teacher and a principal, I taught this fairness, respect, and kindness day in and day out–as did my colleagues—as do so many of you as parents. Still, I feel terrible about what black families have had to endure in the past–and what many continue to endure. For me, the apology works, I would have offered it myself–and have done so previously. The key is that Mr. Matthews (despite what I feel were the best of intentions) should have focused on himself and his own feelings and apology, and should not have tried to speak for others.

I can’t conclude without noting, however, that apologies should NOT be our main focus at this point. The overarching issue is what can we DO–and what are we GOING to do–in order to ensure equal opportunity and equal treatment for all Americans–regardless of race, religion, or ethnicity. Let us try to spend more time, thought, and energy in discussing THESE questions, and not pile on Chris Matthews for an earnest, albeit unwise, apology.

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/joe-newby/2013/07/19/speaking-all-white-people-chris-matthews-apologizes-black-americans-somet

Leave a comment

Filed under American Society, News, Politics