Open Your Eyes

Open your eyes.

Is this what you wanted all along?

Four score and seven years ago,

you thought you’d forever be free.

Is this liberty to you?

Open your eyes

and tell me what you see is just.

Dead children in school hallways,

cartridge cases underneath bar stools,

mothers too exhausted to cry

because they had to outlive their children.

Photo Credit: upload.wikimedia.org

Open your eyes

and tell me again

that this is just for us all.

We are not primitive,

we need no weapons to defend our honor,

no death to feel alive and safe.

Your thoughts and prayers are with us

and your gun is pointed at our chests.

Think and pray if you think that helps.

To amend means to change,

not to rely on for eternity

disregarding how many lives must go.

Open your eyes

and tell me

the blood in the hallways isn’t on your hands,

the cartridge cases aren’t yours.

Change must happen, if only you’d see.

Please, for the people,

open your eyes.

 

Talentless Trump

Photo Credit: http://www.cnn.com

Watching the race for president this year has been painful. We have two especially… interesting candidates; Dr. Ben Carson, an extremely close-minded neurosurgeon, and Donald Trump, the crazy businessman.

Dr. Carson… where do I start?

His opinionated mentality continues to remain one sided as he plows through in the race. He has openly expressed his opinions on some of the most popular topics at the moment, which includes transgender and gay rights.

In reply to the suggestion that transgender men and women should be able to use the bathroom of their new sex, Dr. Carson said, “It is not fair for them to make everyone else uncomfortable,” which, as I would imagine, is frustrating to transgender men and women everywhere.

He suggested that there be a separate bathroom made for transgender people.

Yet again, history repeats itself.

The second candidate of the terrible two is Donald Trump.

I could write for hours about how ignorant he truly is, but instead I shall focus on the most recent issue he has struck the U.S. with: Starbucks cups.

Yes, Starbucks coffee cups.

In Trump’s opinion, Starbucks coffee cups should say “Merry Christmas” rather than “Happy Holidays.”

What?

Is there only one holiday celebrated this winter? Nope, there are three major holidays celebrated in the U.S during the winter holidays; Kwanza, Christmas, and Hanukkah, NOT JUST CHRISTMAS.

Although my family celebrates Christmas, as I am assuming Trump’s does too, it is ridiculous to insist that there be one of these three holidays publicized by companies.

I am disappointed in how narrow-minded both of these Republican candidates are.

Good luck America!

Dumb Laws

I’ve recently become aware of some of the crazy laws that somehow exist in our country. Some of these are so ridiculous that I actually have to question whether or not they actually exist.

In Memphis, Tennessee it is illegal for a woman to drive a car, unless there is a man running or walking in front of it waving a red flag to warn approaching motorists and pedestrians.

It’s also illegal in Memphis for a frog to croak after 11 PM.

In Marshalltown, Iowa, horses are forbidden to eat fire hydrants. Imagine the back story behind that one.

In Massachusetts, it is illegal to go to bed without first having a full bath. Additionally, a woman cannot be on top during sexual activities, and no gorilla is allowed in the back seat of any car.

These are just a few of the many, many ridiculous laws in our country. For more, click here.

A Government Shutdown?

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What is a government shutdown? One would expect that it involves a government shutting down. In the United States however this is not the case. Instead government shutdown is a term Democrats and Republicans use to blame each other. It is also used to stir up fury in the American people, who would fear a dreaded shutdown.

A more accurate term for this “ government shutdown” would be a limited government cutback. In its current state the federal government is shutting down non-essential services and unfortunately jobs. Approximately 800,000 federal workers will, temporarily, lose their jobs.

A true government could occur if Democrats and Republicans cannot pass a federal budget that both agree to. The longer this government cutback lasts the larger the effect it will have on the United States and the American people. Most likely one side will cave in to the other sides demands. I find the possibility of a true compromise remote, if a budget is not created then the federal government will cease to function.

Street Art Revolution

I have always loved art, but not so much in a gallery, while I appreciate it, what really gets me happy is street art.

Street art is one of those things that you always have to appreciate.

I’m not saying all the ugly gang tags on the side of a bridge, but when you see something that someone has taken time to do, and invested more than just money into you have to stop and think about it.

Street art is an ever growing movement.

When people see actual street art and call it graffiti, it actually isn’t correct.

Read More »

Getting Older

Today was my 18th birthday and I had a spectacular time. It ushered in a new time of life for me, one that I look forward to and yet dread at the same time.

I find it odd that today, the US government considers me an adult. Now when I drive way to fast I get much harsher penalties, if I get caught with drugs I go to real jail, I have now become “responsible”.

I understand there has to be a cut off at some point but it still is a lot to comprehend. It really started to settle in when I got my draft card and realized the easy and fun part was kind of over.

I am not intimidated by having stricter punishments and more responsibility. Maybe a little bummed but I also look forward to it.

We in this country still treat turning 18 as a big deal although I don’t see it that way. All I am looking forward to is voting for Obama, not buying cigarettes (which I find disgusting along with cigars) like some of my peers.

I still don’t understand how I can vote, serve in the military and purchase pornography yet I cannot drink alcohol for another three years. It seems absolutely ridiculous to me but what’s new?

As I get older, I see more and more oddities in our society. But I also accept them more easily and find ways of getting around them in a quicker and more efficient manner.

So here is to being an “adult”!

Are We Still a Democracy?

I often hear people saying “we live in an oligarchy” or “we live in a plutocracy” (or both). We title ourselves a democratic republic, but is that still the case today?

First, a few definitions (from Google) for those younger/ignorant readers:

1. Democracy: A system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives

2. Plutocracy: Government by the wealthy

3. Oligarchy: A small group of people having control of a country, organization, or institution

4. Republic: A state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president rather than a monarch

5. Totalitarian (from Wikipedia because I liked their definition better): Government regulates nearly every aspect of public and private life

6. Meritocracy: Government or the holding of power by people selected on the basis of their ability

So, now that’s out of the way we can start to look at this. Immediately we can say that we do not live in a meritocracy given that the GOP controls the House.

It would be very hard to say that we are not living in a plutocracy given that most of the politicians in Washington are extremely wealthy and the fact that it is damn near impossible to be elected into a high position without wealth from the private sector.

The debate could rage on about whether or not we live in an oligarchy or not but I would argue that if we are in a plutocracy (which we are) then it must also be an oligarchy because the elected officials are only from the top 2% or so, which is a (relatively) small group of people.

It is quite clear (just by the definition) that we do not live in democracy solely based on the definition. That being said, we do live in a representative democracy in which we vote for people that vote for us. It is not a democracy in the original sense, but it is a modification of it.

Added to that is the part of us being a republic. I think that without a doubt we are a republic if you look at the definition, there just isn’t really any arguing with that.

And then we get to my favorite, the totalitarianism. Based on that definition it would be hard to argue one way or another. Yes, the government does control much of our lives. But, we do still have freedoms that we use daily. In my mind we have not gotten to the point of being totalitarian and I feel that the American spirit will keep that away.

So what are we then? I would say we are a Demoplutoligaric Republic, but that’s just me.

We live in a society that is becoming more and more elite. Although the tone of this may sound pessimistic I am not. My feeling is that we must commit to what we want to be, we must make progress in some direction.

If we want the wealthy to rule the country, lets be honest about it and just commit to it. If we stop being closet elitists then we can decide to make progress. That being said, we must be careful what we choose.

We live in a key time where the power could switch very quickly into hands that may not use it in the way we want. We as a country must come together and decide where we need to go and how we will get there.