Tag Archives: Politics

President Obama farewell speech

President Obama addressed thousands of supporters and the nation in his final public address on Tuesday, January 10, 2017.  Barack and Michelle Obama are likely to be remembered by me as my favorite President and First Lady.

While Obama’s list of accomplishments are impressive, what I’ll always remember and thank Obama for is the acknowledgement and inclusion of the LGBTQ community in their vision of America.

Thank You President and Mrs. Obama.

Shepard Fairey, We The People Kickstarter campaign

art, public art, protest art, protest Trump,

Shepard Fairey is once again using his art to make a political statement, and I couldn’t be happier to say that I’ve donated to the We The People Kickstarter campaign, which closes this Tuesday, to show my support.

The campaign which includes works from Shepard Fairey, Jessica Sabogal, and Ernesto Yerena has raised nearly $830,000 from more than 13,000 individual donors. The money will be used to take out full page advertisement the day of Trump’s Coronation Inauguration in The Washington Post and include posters for people to hold along the parade route in Washington, D.C.

If you would like to learn more about the campaign and possibly make a donation as well you can visit We The PeopleWe the People

Boston Tea Party happened 243 years ago today

kennedy-tea-partyDid you know that on December 16, 1773 (some 243 years ago) a bunch of fed up colonists from Massachusetts dressed like Native Americans and snuck aboard a ship to dump tea into Boston harbor as a way to protest their frustrations with the British Monarchy?

Although it has nothing to do with the protest, I prefer this image of one of my favorite Presidents, having a tea party of another sort with his daughter.  I find both the history of the Tea Party as well as the image of President John Kennedy very inspiring, and these days I’m looking for inspiration wherever I can find it.

Sanctuary cities like Boston face real threat from Trump

Boston, sanctuary city, immigrationRecently San Francisco made news by passing a resolution, indicating they intend to remain a sanctuary city. I’m proud that Boston’s Mayor as well as mayors from several surrounding cities including Cambridge and Somerville have also repeated that they will remain a sanctuary city even if it means losing federal funding which could happen, considering President-elect Trump has pledged to move against sanctuary cities financially, saying,“We will cancel all federal funding to sanctuary cities.”

It is hard to tell what will happen, but I support Mayor Walsh on this issue. Donald Trump may have won the presidential election but he lost in a landslide here and his values are not my state’s values. I’d rather Boston work with mayors from other cities like San Francisco and New York City than compromise on this.

Republican Immigration platformRelated Stories in the news:
San Francisco Board of Supervisors Statement on remaining a Sanctuary City

NYC Mayor de Blasio pledge to protect undocumented workers

Washington Post Article: Despite Trump’s threat to cut federal funding, mayors pledge to protect undocumented immigrants

This is how you go high, when they go low

when they go low, we go highDoes the name Natalie Elle Woods sound familiar to you? Perhaps not. She is not a politician nor is she famous, but a spur of the moment action by Natalie earlier this month has been the topic of discussion on a number of social media sites and I really want to share her story with you.

Natalie was out having dinner with a friend on November 11th when an older gentleman seated directly behind her started talking about how disgusted he was to learn his nephew was gay. According to Natalie his friends said they would pray that his nephew would be cured. Instead of getting angry or possibly intervening, Natalie said that she thought about what Michelle Obama had said at the DNC. She said she felt inspired by her words, “When they go low, we go high.” and she decided to take the high road. She called the manager over and asked if she could pay for the dinner and leave a quick note on the bill.

Did Natalie’s actions change the mind or hearts of the people who’s dinner she paid for? Probably not, but her actions have gone on to inspire others and to show how one can make a statement outside of shouting over each other and for that I think she should be commended.

I’ve abbreviated the full story to make this easier for all to read, but if you’d like to read more about this, Huffington Post has a lovely interview with Natalie Elle Woods that you can read here: Here’s What Happened When They Went Low And She Went High.

Stronger together: Taking back Congress in 2018

us-congressI’m more than alarmed by a Donald Trump presidency. Having said that, I’m also becoming increasingly alarmed by the reaction of many Progressives. I half expect to see my friends foaming at the mouth and pulling their hair out on January 20, 2017. Something (BTW) that will bring Trump and his supporters a great deal of satisfaction, which is one reason instead of feeding into the hysteria, I refuse to be baited. It is also the reason I’m writing this post.

Vilifying all Trump supporters won’t help Progressives

If we hope to change the hearts and minds of those previously undecided voters (many of whom held their nose when they voted for Trump or worse yet, stayed home on election day), vilifying his supporters won’t make them more open to listening to our [Progressives] very real concerns. Diane Hessan wrote an insightful article in The Boston Globe that was republished on BostInno, What I Learned Studying America’s ‘Undecideds’. Hessan worked on special assignment for the Clinton campaign to better understand the views of undecided voters in swing states. Her conclusion on why / how Clinton lost the election is summed up in one paragraph in her article:

“Last week, I reread all of my notes. There was one moment when I saw more undecided voters shift to Trump than any other, when it all changed, when voters began to speak differently about their choice. It wasn’t FBI Director James Comey, Part One or Part Two; it wasn’t Benghazi or the e-mails or Bill Clinton’s visit with Attorney General Loretta Lynch on the tarmac. No, the conversation shifted the most during the weekend of Sept. 9, after Clinton said, “You can put half of Trump supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables.”

It is time for Progressives to get real. Progressives have only enjoyed political prominence recently. Prior to the Obama administration, you have to go back to the Carter Administration (1976-1980) before you can really point to a President that consistently supported progressive policies and ideals. The Liberal wing of the Democratic Party have a long history of making change happen even when we don’t have a champion in the White House or the support of Congress. So it is time to flex our grass roots muscles and build bridges – not burn them.

We are stronger together so let’s start practicing what we preach

We must identify those who voted for Trump not because they liked him but because they felt they had no other choice and the same goes for those who stayed home on election day. Elections are all about numbers and if our goal is to take back the US Senate and the US House of Representatives (a long shot I know) in 2018 then we need to change our tone and do as Hessan wrote:

“Empathy — trying to understand others as deeply as possible — is an important first step… Obama said it eloquently last week, noting that our election is ultimately an intramural scrimmage because we are all on one team. If we believe in liberty and justice for all, we have to acknowledge how terrible it is to feel left out — and then to ask questions, learn and walk in each other’s shoes.”

I don’t think we should roll-over and play dead, but if we really want to take back Congress, there needs to be more decorum. While some may find it cathartic to shout “bigot”, “misogynist” or “homophobe”, or to scandalize everything Trump says or does, it doesn’t really build bridges or practice what we preach about being stronger together. Nor are those accusations a fair characteristic of everyone who voted for Trump; remember Obama won over voters from Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin – twice. Lastly, making such accusations will rally those “undecideds” to Trump, possibly delivering him a larger majority in Congress in 2018, and I think we can all agree that must not happen.

Send a message to Speaker Ryan

paul-ryanAre you disheartened by the election results from earlier this month? If so, here is a way for you and your friends (because you should share this if you really are upset) to express your dissatisfaction and help send a message to Paul Ryan.

My friend and neighbor, David, who is far more diligent than me and whom I trust completely, shared that Speaker Ryan’s office is conducting a survey, hoping they can show there is a people’s mandate for repealing the Affordable Care Act – a.k.a. Obamacare.

You and your friends can help send Speaker Ryan quite a different message and it will take you less than 30-seconds of your time.

  1. Call (202) 225-0600
  2. Wait through a loooong silence until it rings
  3. Press “2” to respond to the survey
  4. Listen to a message
  5. Press “1” to register your support for Obamacare
  6. When you are done, copy and paste these instructions into a new status on Facebook to share with your friends.