Human Rights

The UN Declaration of Human Rights, of which the United States is a signatory, was one of Eleanor Roosevelt’s proudest achievements.  It was ratified seventy years ago.

It’s depressing how many of these we are currently not only in violation of, but proudly in violation of.

You can visit the UN’s web page on this topic HERE, where you can also download a copy.

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What if?

“People died and it’s a horrible tragedy. My feelings move from shock and disbelief to going to the ‘what-ifs.’  What if I tried to reach out to him that last time I saw him? ‘Hey Mark, how are you doing?'”  ~Mark Roessler, neighbor of Austin bomber Mark Conditt (source)

1934

It’s 84 years later.  Things should be a lot different.

They aren’t.

“God invited us all to come and eat and drink all we wanted. He smiled on our land and we grew crops of plenty to eat and wear. He showed us in the earth the iron and other things to make everything we wanted. He unfolded to us the secrets of science so that our work might be easy. God called: ‘Come to my feast.’ Then what happened? Rockefeller, Morgan, and their crowd stepped up and took enough for 120 million people and left only enough for 5 million for all the other 125 million to eat. And so many millions must go hungry and without these good things God gave us unless we call on them to put some of it back.”  ~Huey Long (source)

Unhealthy

I can remember a time that this image was everywhere; on patches, posters, stickers, graffiti.

It’s hard now to remember a time when war without end was considered an aberration, a time before a daily body count was just part of the background noise, like crickets in the country.

 

Trump Wants a Parade

We went to see John Conlee sing last week, and it was a very good concert– at the age of 71 his voice is as strong and clear as it was forty years ago– but there was a strange interlude in the middle.

For some reason he quit singing songs and went into a sermon in support of the troops. He put a 5-gallon bucket at the center of the stage, and invited the audience to contribute to a veteran’s charity he had taken a shine to. One at a time grim-faced men and women, their eyes glaring and focused, strutted, their bodies lurching from side to side with each step, to the front to add their money to the pile.  Several shook his hand.

Their intensity was unsettling.

The lady next to me noticed that I wasn’t cheering and applauding, and made a point of shouting and clapping even louder. She was clearly trying to make a point without actually confronting me.

I don’t think it’s healthy for a society to be as militarized as we have become.

I don’t see this ending well.

Good job, Don.

Because of Donald Trump’s rants, standing for the national anthem now feels more like an endorsement of his policies than an act of patriotism.

I always thought it was kind of weird to have a national song that is only sung prior to sporting events, a song so difficult to sing that even professionals have a hard time hitting the notes, a song that’s really just a lyrical version of the fight scene in Cool Hand Luke.  I only stood up for it because the song seemed to mean something to the people around me, even if I didn’t quite get it myself.

But now I don’t feel like I can stand in good conscience.