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Posts Tagged ‘presidential election’

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions. No one tells me what to do, not even myself. I kinda figured a lot of you feel that way, too, so here is my out-of-the-blue resolution: No more politics on this blog. If I have thoughts that won’t be held in, I’ll create a separate blog. This country is more divided on political matters than I’ve ever seen it, but so many of us are in sync in more ways than we aren’t. That’s what is blog has always been about, with a few diversions on the soap box. The soap box is going.

What brought this about? An unnamed best selling author invited me to be a friend on Facebook (soft promotion they all do). I have not read any of her books, but she is considered a Southern writer, and I do gravitate to Southern writers, so assumed I would enjoy her “friendly banter,” and maybe pick up a few writing tips. Lately though, her page has become a litany of political videos and rantings (with a chorus of admirers offering amens). What this writer showed me is that politics is a poor PR business model, and so is throwing your web friends under the bus for their views by implication. I promise to try hard to not do that. Let’s see if I can. YOU are worth it.

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Our senior year 1955 Byron Bradfute and his long time neighbor sat in the locker room before first football practice. The coach had a special talk for the team that year. Beeville, Texas had closed black Lott Canada H.S. and folded the students into A.C. Jones H.S. The guys all listened and probably heard the waa waa waa of Charlie Brown’s teacher until Coach said players were to make the new classmates feel welcome and that there was to be no fighting. Byron looked at his black childhood friend and said, “Coach, we’ve been fighting all our lives. You mean we can’t fight anymore?”  For the racially deaf among you; it was playful fighting.

I can’t help but think of this story when I look around and see what is happening to race relations since Obama was elected. I don’t vote Democrat, so he wasn’t my choice, but I was soothed by the thought that race relations would get even better, that we had crossed the bar. How very, very naive I was. Only eight months have passed since inauguration, and I cannot remember this much acrimony in a long time.

Our family is at a place where dear friends are black or bi-racial, we have nieces who are bi-racial, my son finally found a church he feels at home in, and it is an African American church. We saw him baptized there last year and can see how the pastors and congregation have embraced him. When my husband passed and there was a delay in the memorial, it was my son’s deacons who piled out of a van and conducted a small prayer service for us one evening in our living room when we needed it most, complete with jubilee music.

Was this all for nothing? There seem to be factions, both black and white, which would tear apart all that has begun to be repaired – and I don’t like it. Not one bit. I pray cooler heads will prevail.

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“I’m not a president, but I play one on TV.”

 Do you  have the feeling Obama might end his TV appearances with that disclaimer? He’s just too damn happy to be in the most stressful job in the world. I prematurely dubbed Vice President Biden with the moniker TooDamnHappy, but I’m going to have to wrest that title away from him and pin it on Obama. I thought I would never see anyone as pleased with himself as Ole Joe, certainly not the suave gentleman next to him, handling every word as if it were nitroglycerin. Where did that guy go?

 Just this week he’s smoozing with Anderson, Katie, Brian, Chris and Charlie. Then he goes to a elementary classroom and tells the students he needed to get out of the house. And he talks of puppies and daughters, and by the way, stimulus bill. No doubt the first flight on Air Force One is a thrill, but do we really need to follow Obama’s commutes live?

 Earth to Obama: The election is over. You won. You can stop campaigning. This is a fine line I walk because I’ve complained about presidents who have padlocked themselves behind the oval office door and a Veep who dwelled in “an undisclosed location,” but I really think the public just might be lavished with too much information this time. Mr. President, document your every sneeze, if you must, but save it for a documentary or your future library.  Show us the side of you that will let us know we have a grownup in charge. Please.

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How many highs and lows can you cram in one week? I don’t know, but last week fate did its best to break a record.

 

 

 

Riverwalk, Sanford, FL

Riverwalk, Sanford, FL

 

 

Hannah in Antique Shop

Hannah in Antique Shop

 

Haley & The Dragon

Haley & The Dragon

Saturday, I prowled the nooks and crannies of antique shops in Sanford, FL with my granddaughters and daughter-in-law and let the cool breezes blow on us on the Riverwalk on Lake Monroe. Downtown Sanford is right on the water. Its beautiful old main street has been gussied up with charming restaurants and shops and is a great place to spend the day. What history lessons the “antiques” provide! Try it sometime with your grands. They’ll meet the first I Pod (78 rpm record player), manual cash register with pop-up numbers, embroidered tea towels grandmas made and put in a hope chest for their trousseau, and school desks with ink wells. You picture them in fifty or sixty years showing their grands antique stores with unrecognizable items such as flat screen TV’s, I Pods, I Phones, ear buds, and select furniture from Rooms to Go.

 

Two mornings later I’m on the phone to 911 before 7 a.m. Why do they try to keep you hanging on the line until six strapling EMTs are in the middle of your bedroom? Does anybody know? I finally told the lady I had to hang up and get some clothes on, and I did – just in time. I guess they are used to staying in contact when the caller is in the closet and Freddie Kruger is gassing up his chainsaw. But I had more important things to do than chat. The guys and girls got my husband breathing in seconds. We were totally impressed with them. We spent the better part of the day in ER, but were allowed to go home with promises to return immediately if the pneumonia worsened. I’ve been afraid to take my clothes off all week, but Jerry is better. My friend Abbe says the blonde medicine is working. 🙂

 

Highs and lows pretty much pinged around like a piston election night. Without anyone to really support, you would think some of the thrill would go out of the election, but no. It’s in our blood. I would like to nominate John McCain for best concession speech EVER. I had forgotten how gracious politics could be in the old days. Thanks for bringing that back, John, if only for a few minutes.

 

 

Mountain to Mole Hill --Someday

Mountain to Mole Hill --Someday

Cooler weather today was my cue to begin making a mole hill out of the mountain of wood chips the tree people dumped in our side yard for free. So I started this morning. I soon began to glisten and my muscles hinted at how they will feel tomorrow. I stepped back to see what must be a greatly reduced pile, and hoped I had enough. Take a look at the picture. Perspective. It’s all in the perspective. Up close it seemed I had chiseled away the size of the Grand Canyon.  At least I don’t have to do my yoga today for exercise.

 

To cap the week off, I checked our 401K. Am I ready for next week? I don’t know. Perhaps I’ll adopt the phlosophy of my friend Bob Buckman: The lower our accounts go, the less we have to lose. 

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The following is from an Obama interview in 2001. Now I think I know what he considers flawed in our government — the Constitution. If you feel the same, vote for him. If you trust the founding fathers more — DON’T. Whomever is elected must put his hand on the Bible and swear to protect the Constitution. Can Obama do that? Will he? His own words lead you to believe not.  

His quote is below. Italics are mine.

 

In the 2001 interview, Obama said:

If you look at the victories and failures of the civil rights movement and its litigation strategy in the court, I think where it succeeded was to invest formal rights in previously dispossessed people, so that now I would have the right to vote. I would now be able to sit at the lunch counter and order and as long as I could pay for it I’d be OKBut, the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth, and of more basic issues such as political and economic justice in society. To that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical. It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it’s been interpreted, and the Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can’t do to you. Says what the federal government can’t do to you, but doesn’t say what the federal government or state government must do on your behalf.

And that hasn’t shifted and one of the, I think, tragedies of the civil rights movement was because the civil rights movement became so court-focused I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalition of powers through which you bring about redistributive change. In some ways we still suffer from that.

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