Wednesday, December 25, 2013

What Is the Price of Free Speech?

No, this isn't a post about Duck Dynasty, or Phil Robertson. This post is about the value of free speech. In April of this year, a University at Buffalo Student, a Students for Life; a Pro-Life student group at the University of Buffalo was charged $650 in "security fees" to hold a debate on abortion on campus, and are in the midst of a lawsuit against the school for placing unfair burdens on their rights to free speech. So, what is the price of free speech? What is the price of holding on to an ideal or view you hold dear? What is the price of defending what you believe is right and true? If this case is any indication, we're about to find out.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

I Support Phil Robertson.

"Freedom of opinion, and Freedom of  Speech." It is a staple of American freedom. But I've been thinking about that this morning, and well, come to think of it, there is no freedom of opinion anymore. It's impossible for one to have a personal opinion these days. If a person happens to belong to any political party, in reality they have ceded the essences of their opinions to the ideals and directions of the party they belong to. I know, I was a brash young Republican not long ago, my opinions and responses hinged on every ideal the party represented.
I personally do not have ANY problems with homosexuals, but I do have a problem
with ANYONE that wants others to accept their lifestyle by force with their threats.
But then I had an epiphany: are my opinions really my own? Am I really thinking for myself? The answer to those questions were clearly obvious. Not at all. The disingenuous political stances my 'party' stood for had been dictating my opinions. I was no longer thinking for myself. I had turned into a parrot; a mouthpiece, repeating anything and everything my party was telling me to. Enough was enough. This is what facilitated my transformation into a libertarian. The pattern isn't hard to recognize, really. Politics has a bad way of robbing a person the ability to think for himself. The freedom to have an opinion suddenly hinges on whether someone agrees with them or not. They feel compelled to change the opinions of others and react hostilely to anyone who refuses. Examples of this exist on both ends of the political spectrum.

Firstly, black men, black women, white women and Hispanics have all been co-opted by the Democrats. Their opinions must match the party's platform, or else they're racist, misogynistic, anti immigrant or an Uncle Tom. Examples include Herman Cain,  Sarah Palin and Marco Rubio. On the Republican side it is equally as unnerving. Just a few hours ago, I was reading a thread where conservatives were being urged to 'let the gay shit go.' The author dubbed anyone who didn't see eye to eye as a 'hater.' In some ways this could be worse than what Democrats are doing; asking a person to simply sacrifice his or her own ideals and opinions for a little capitulation to the mainstream way of thought. Our Founding Fathers strove for the freedom of thought, not to ascribe to the 'joiners vs. thinkers' mentality. Its as if either party believes they have a monopoly on free thought. Oh, how wrong they are.
Phil Robertson was censored and being punished (no, it wasn't by the government, but it was still censorship) and that's no laughing matter.  And that is why the far left is dangerous.
Don't you find it odd that people like Martin Bashir get a FREE pass for their intolerance toward conservative women, but people like Phil Robertson are being targeted for their beliefs?
The monotony of the two party system is this: Opinion is fact, fact is opinion. One or the other can be summarily dismissed if it doesn't conform to the established way of thinking and doing things. Many intelligent people are victimized by this mentality, and as a result are using such a gift for deleterious means. There is no freedom of opinion in Politics anymore. People are eager to trumpet the causes of their own side; all the meanwhile completely unaware they are being used as tools, and not for the causes of the nation as a whole. The most prominent people in history chose to think for themselves, to not be dictated to by a fixed set of ideals. Politics has a way of stealing away the most precious gem in dwelling in each of us

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Freedom of Speech? Freedom of Religious Opinion? Not If You're Phil Robertson

 I am trying to cover a broad range of issues here that don't necessarily relate to the suspension of Phil Robertson, but cover the issue of religious freedom and expression. And expose the crazy lefty liberals with radical anti-American agendas!
I know some of you watch Duck Dynasty and probably heard that Phil Robertson was suspended by A&E for his opinion on homosexuality. He had the gall to quote 1 Corinthians 6:9 and express himself openly about his opposition to gay marriage. Groups like GLAAD came out in support of the suspension. Don't you find it odd that people like Martin Bashir get a pass for their intolerance toward conservative women, but people like Phil Robertson are being targeted for their beliefs?
Should TV Networks silence religious speech for the political sensibilities of others? As most of you were aware, Chick-Fil-A came under similar scrutiny by gay rights organizations for its views on homosexuality last year. The response from the public was overwhelming, as the restaurant experienced booming profits from the ordeal. Suffice it to say, ratings for the show may experience similar results.

Should Phil Robertson be suspended for his comments in GQ? Or should he be allowed to express himself as he is allowed to by the the First Amendment? My personal opinion here is that no TV network should be allowed to censor a man for expressing his religious beliefs.
More intolerance from the crowd that always demands tolerance...! 

There have been many instances of people or businesses being targeted for their religious beliefs, all for being "intolerant." Isn't it strange that you can be allowed to be homosexual, but not a person of faith? The real intolerance here, is of those who cannot accept that others aren't forced to tolerate their way of life or their practices. If you are any freedom loving American; Democrat, Republican or Libertarian, you should be disturbed by this recent turn of events.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Dear Mr. President:

Dear Mr. President:

I can't say that I approve of your policies, and I can't say I really respect you as a person, but you are the President. My grandmother taught me at a young age to respect the office you hold, she never said anything about respecting the person holding it. But I must congratulate you on being the first black man to be elected to the presidency, that much credit is due you. And you do carry a great deal of prestige with that title.

I am a Conservative, Republican  living in the Southeast United States, who has grown incredibly displeased with the direction you have proceeded to take my country. In the following body of this letter, sir, I will address some key issues I have with some of the decisions you have made during your presidency.

You have made a great effort (or so you say) of insuring the uninsured, but you were kept in the dark about the failure of the Obamacare website. I must question why you haven't fired or at least disciplined Kathleen Sebelius for the disastrous rollout of the Obamacare website, along with the entire law itself (hey, please don't get mad at me for calling it that, it does have your name on it and you did introduce it). On top of that, you may or may not have known 1,496,000 people have now lost insurance in five states under your new healthcare law. How will you explain yourself to them? Why sir, are you not required to participate in the very law you created?

Moving on. You have all of today's modern technology at your fingertips, and with all of that technology you managed to spy on hundreds of millions of unsuspecting Americans via the NSA. But what strikes me odd is that you couldn't craft and launch a simple healthcare website with similar technology. Why is that Mr. President? Why sir, did you willfully lie to us about being able to keep our plans and our doctors under Obamacare? Did you somehow not know this was the case? Or did you know all along?

You say you have presided over a record number of deportations under your watch. Alright, then why, sir, did you grant amnesty to 800,000 illegal immigrants and their children? I am as an American citizen appalled by this act. One of your biggest responsibilities to Americans is to ensure our border is secure, not overly porous. We have laws on the books that you have refused to enforce, or have outrightly broken to give amnesty to all of those people.

In regards to what happened on September 11, 2012 in Benghazi, Libya: What were you thinking, Mr. President? The families of four brave men who died that night in the consulate are still searching for answers, Mr. President, why do you insist on lying about it? Why didn't you simply tell the truth to them and to the American people?

As far as our spending is concerned, why haven't you done anything to address our growing national debt and out of control spending? Why are you allowing Harry Reid to repeatedly block any attempt by the House to address the issue? Our national debt hit $17 trillion immediately following the end of the government shutdown. However, you continue claiming you "inherited" that mess from President George W. Bush. You have been personally responsible for spending over $6 trillion, and adding just that much to our debt in the five years you've been in office. When will you get around to that?

I have also noticed how callously you treat our soldiers and veterans. No greater example of such came during the partial government shutdown when you refused access to thousands of WWII veterans to a memorial they helped to create with their own blood, sweat and tears. How come you feel like these men and women don't deserve any reverence for the literal hell they've been through? Why did you feel it necessary to barricade them?

There are numerous other issues I take exception to that you yourself are responsible for, namely your wavering stances on gay marriage, and your abandonment of the Defense of Marriage Act among other things, I know you are a busy man, Mr. President, so I'll close with this final question: Just how long do you think Americans will remain ignorant of what you and your colleagues are doing there in Washington? Again, I thank you for taking the time to read this rather lengthy letter.



Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Death of a Presidency

I remember the night when Obama got elected 5 years ago. At that time my knowledge of politics was a bit less  limited then it is today. I didn't agree with what Obama was preaching, but I couldn't help but hope with the rest of those Americans that there would be a positive change in this country. I really wanted  the election of the first black man to the White House. As a Republican who didn't vote for him,  I held myself back. 
As the first 100 days went by, I knew Obama would be no ordinary president. I never thought that one day, this self proclaimed savior of America would be the instrument of his own destruction.
In those 100 days, Democrats had garnered majorities in both houses of Congress, and finally after the electoral euphoria wore off, the discussion turned to healthcare insurance and economic recovery. Obama proposed a plan that he purported would provide the millions of uninsured Americans access to affordable healthcare. I thought to myself, 'hey this is cool, maybe he won't be such a bad president after all. Maybe I can get insurance!' But as I began to learn how to investigate and do research, I found out how little of this law was going to work.

Republicans repeatedly and without fail warned that millions of Americans would lose their insurance and that premiums would skyrocket, while the newly elected president continued to assert that if they liked their plans and doctors they could keep them. Despite the objections of millions upon millions of Americans against this new proposal, on Christmas Eve that same year, Democrats passed what would be now known as Obamacare. Republicans could do little else to stop it's passage, other than to unanimously vote no. Little did I know just how loud those objections would become.

In 2010, the backlash was tremendous. Throughout the year, millions of Americans assailed their Representatives and Senators during the congressional recess, the question most asked was "Why? Why would you ignore the will of we the people to pass a law we didn't consent to?" On election night that year, the Democrats paid dearly for their unwillingness to heed to the will of their constituents. They were swiftly rendered a minority in the house, and though miraculously, kept control of the Senate.

The next year and a half didn't see much debate on the law, since the inevitability of the ACA's implementation was almost certain. In 2011 and 2012 we saw Obama campaign on his promises, amidst the Arab Spring, the Benghazi Scandal and Superstorm Sandy. The previous four years saw him do little to fix a broken economy, but yet he was put back in the White House for a second term. Republicans would try in futility to repeal Obamacare, only to be vilified successfully by their opponents.

This year, all hell broke out for Obama, as it was made known that people under him had been targeting Tea Party organizations unfairly during the previous election. Then it got even worse, it was discovered that the NSA had been spying on millions of Americans. Scandal after scandal broke out in Washington, damaging a once proud presidency.

Still, Obama remained undeterred, unblemished. He had the entire media behind him, he could do no wrong. There was so much momentum from the passage of the law that it seemed as if Obama would be the proverbial Democratic version of Ronald Reagan. Obama appeared to be invincible. Nobody could stop him. But after all those years of broken promises and scandals, it would be the signature law that supposedly defined Obama's presidency which would be responsible for undoing it. Millions of people began losing their healthcare, and premiums began rising exponentially.

The death blow came as Obama admitted that he lied to America about keeping their insurance plans and paying lower premiums. He tried to make it right by issuing an executive order allowing those millions adversely affected to keep their insurance, to no avail. In five years, I have watched myself metamorphose into someone who departed from the two party world, as I watched the presidency of a self anointed savior evaporate into the thinness of the air. The death of a presidency has come swiftly and the aura of hope and change has faded.