English: "Country Gentleman" magazin...

English: “Country Gentleman” magazine cover, November 1922. The 19th Amendment giving all women the right to vote wasn’t ratified until August 1920. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Women won the right to vote in 1920 with the passage of the 19th amendment to the US Constitution. Before then, only men could vote in national elections. Some men believed that women were not suited for making political decisions in a world dominated by money and power. With the right to vote comes the necessity that the entrenched power structure recognize the worth and the demands of those who can vote. After the GOP take away a woman’s control of her own body, women may expect that the GOP will attack a woman’s right to vote, using the tired old argument that women are not suited to the rough and tumble of politics. Ladies, beware.

Agenda for America

College Students Show Little Interest in Polit...

College Students Show Little Interest in Politics This Election Year (Photo credit: University of Maryland Press Releases)

The GOP Agenda for America is known in Washington by its acronym, CRAP.

“C” is for the cut, cap and balance amendment to the US Constitution that the GOP favor,

“R” is for the repeal of Obamacare and much regulation.

“A” is for the austerity they want to impose; the sequester is only a small prelude to the full program of budget cuts.

“P” is for punishment of the American people for voting Democratic; it will continue until the GOP return to power.



repeal! (Photo credit: skampy)

I favor the repeal of the second amendment to the Constitution (gun rights) and the twenty-second (presidential term limits). I realize that neither amendment is likely to be repealed anytime soon, but I still support their repeal.

Some on the Right have a longer list they want to repeal in addition to the enactment of the cut, cap and balance amendment. I oppose that amendment not only for the straitjacket it would impose on Federal spending during emergencies, but also because the proponents of the amendment want to cap Federal expenditures at a ridiculously low-level, 18% of GDP. Historically, Federal expenditures have been around 21-22% of GDP, and higher during recessions and war. If the supporters of cut, cap and balance have their way, most of the government safety net will disappear permanently, and that is their goal. The key word in cut, cap and balance is “cut.” Supporters don’t talk about what they will cut; they emphasize balance instead.

Christian nation?

Christian rules

Christian rules (Photo credit: Matt Paish 2011)

Is the US a Christian nation? If you surveyed church goers, most would say that we are a majority Christian nation. However, there are millions of Americans who profess another faith or no faith at all. I think that we can gauge how Christian a nation we are by how we treat non-Christians. The US Constitution, under the first amendment, specifies that there will be no established, state sponsored, religion. The oath of allegiance and our currency contain “under God“, but do not specify whose God, the Christian God or another religion’s. Part of our current problems in the US, IMHO, is that one party, the GOP, wants to take back the country. By that they mean take back the country to a time when minorities knew their place, there were fewer people of color, one bread-winner in a family was sufficient and when there were fewer members of other religions within the US.

Guns and cigarettes

Picture of Daniel Webster

Picture of Daniel Webster (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Both are killers.

Just imagine how difficult it would be to control smoking if the right to cigarettes were protected by an amendment to the Constitution. Many still die each year because making and selling cigarettes is still profitable. However, the number who die is declining due to education and increased taxes. “The power to tax is the power to destroy,” according to Daniel Webster and John Marshall. Today in addition, many laws regulate where smoking is permitted.

If only it were as easy to regulate guns as it is to regulate cigarettes. However, the second amendment and the NRA make common sense regulation of guns more difficult and about 100 Americans die every day because of gun violence. Trayvon Martin was only one of the approximately 100 who died that day. Little notice taken of the other 99. If only education and taxation could reduce the number of guns in circulation and the number of gun deaths. Perhaps then we could enact sensible laws about the number and types of guns that people are allowed to own.

It is estimated that 90% of the guns in the hands of Mexican drug cartels are made and sold in the US. We are arming all sides in the drug wars and profiting from the deaths on our doorstep. The Fast and Furious operation was an attempt to trace the various routes US guns travel to Mexico. Many small purchases are made of assault weapons and others by individuals who buy to resell to the drug cartels.