25 November 2011

I’m an American

I’m not anything hyphenated

Oh, I know it’s been popular for sometime for Black-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, Asian-American, Mexican-American, Arab-American, Muslim-American, Asian Pacific Islanders and Native-Americans to identify themselves and each other, and for many overly self-conscious social elitists to label people in a sensitive, caring, self-righteous way. 

I could be, I suppose, a Norwegian-American by choice like many who choose the part of their heritage they prefer.  In reality I’m three quarters German and one quarter Norwegian.  I must confess I had thought of it some years back when completing those optional race surveys attached to so many governmental forms.

It irritated me that of all organizations, the government was perpetuating the use of racial descriptors while proclaiming racial names inappropriate and loosely connected to hate speech.  

And being a fifth generation American I began identifying myself a Native American 15 years ago while in government service on forms with the race identifier option, and no signed declaration of truthfulness, without any qualms.  It occurs to me now that German-American or German-Norwegian-American would have been accurate and more in the spirit of these hyphenated times.

Recently in a telephone survey about California politics I was given the option to race identify at the end of the survey.  I had the surveyor repeat a long list of socially insensitive race identifiers a couple times.  To my continuing consternation about sixty percent of California’s population was lumped into one category; “White”.  It just didn’t seem politically or hyphenatedly correct enough to me.  So I told the interviewer an unhyphenated Native American without hesitation or a twinge of untruthfulness.

As if these absurdities aren’t enough, I’ve notice lately a kind of disclaimer race identifier like, non-Hispanic Black-American, non-Black Hispanic American, and non-Asian Pacific Islander, or maybe a non-Black African?

I was hoping that if anything good came from the passage of “Hate Speech” laws they would eliminate the use of race and ancestral nationality identifiers, but alas, it’s only gotten worse. 

We recently visited the African continent; Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa for three weeks and in cities and in the bush, meeting and talking with many Africans, I never once heard any of them referred to as Black Africans or White Africans, and there are quite a number of other variations like Arab Africans and Asian Africans.  There are noticeable numbers of fourth and fifth generation White-Africans, but not once in three weeks did I anyone refer to themselves or others with any hyphenated race names.

It should be abundantly clear by now that I find it utterly ridiculous and completely unnecessary to race identify people.  And I’m not sure that nationality identifiers are needed, but if they are, I’m pretty sure that only one nationality name is necessary.  You either are a US citizen, or you are from some other nation, like Mexico, Cuba, Panama, Bolivia, Australia, Egypt, Japan, China, Peru, United Kingdom, France, India or Canada or of some other nation, whatever your country of birth is, or wherever you are recognized as a citizen.  Or if you wish, you are from a continent, like North American, South American, Asian, European, African, Australian, or perhaps a region like Middle Eastern or Central American, or however you would like to be geographically attached. 

You can only be born in one place, therefore;

I do not believe you should be anything hyphenated!

18 November 2011

Thomas Jefferson

Born, 13 April 1743, Shadwell, Virginia
Died, 4 July 1826 (age 83) Charlottesville, Virginia

A friend sent me this summary of one this nations founding fathers and a life time favorite of mine.  I have not verified all that's listed here, but much of it is published in commonly believed written history, and easily believed by me to be largely factual.

He was a man of enormous contributions to our nations founding, and a man of great intellect, wisdom, compassion, and thoughtfulness.  I doubt he ever undertook anything without considerable forethought.  He was a very remarkable man who started learning very early in life and never stopped.

At 5, began studying under his cousin's tutor.
At 9, studied Latin, Greek and French.
At 14, studied classical literature and additional languages.
At 16, entered the College of William and Mary.
At 19, studied Law for 5 years starting under George Wythe.
At 23, started his own law practice.
At 25, was elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses.
At 31, wrote the widely circulated "Summary View of the Rights of British America  and retired from his law practice.
At 32, was a Delegate to the Second Continental Congress.
At 33, wrote the Declaration of Independence.
At 33, took three years to revise Virginia's legal code and wrote a Public Education bill and a statute for Religious Freedom.
At 36, was elected the second Governor of Virginia succeeding Patrick Henry.
At 40, served in Congress for two years.
At 41, was the American minister to France and negotiated commercial treaties with European nations along with Ben Franklin and John Adams.
At 46, served as the first Secretary of State under George Washington.
At 53, served as Vice President and was elected president of the American Philosophical Society.
At 55, drafted the Kentucky Resolutions and became the active head of Republican Party.
At 57, was elected the third president of the United States .
At 60, obtained the Louisiana Purchase doubling the nation's size.
At 61, was elected to a second term as President.
At 65, retired to Monticello .
At 80, helped President Monroe shape the Monroe Doctrine.
At 81, almost single-handedly created the University of Virginia and served as its first president.
At 83, died on the 50th anniversary of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence along with John Adams

He studied the previously failed attempts at government. He understood actual history, the nature of God, his laws and the nature of man more so than most understand today.  A voice from the past to lead us into the future.

John F. Kennedy held a dinner in the white House for a group of the brightest minds in the nation at that time. He made this statement, "This is perhaps the assembly of the most intelligence ever to gather at one time in the White House with the exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone."

"When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as Europe ." -- Thomas Jefferson

"The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not."-- Thomas Jefferson

"It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world."-- Thomas Jefferson

"I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them." -- Thomas Jefferson

"My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government." -- Thomas Jefferson

"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." -- Thomas Jefferson

"The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."-- Thomas Jefferson

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." -- Thomas Jefferson

"To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical."-- Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson said in 1802, "I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.  If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property - until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered."

I doubt he intended to be considered a great prophet, but his prophecies ring eerily true today.  

17 November 2011

National Defense

Starts within Our Borders

Post all future ground forces within our borders.  Immediately begin worldwide drawdown of ground forces posted on the soil of foreign countries, including embassy guards, with a target of zero foreign ground forces in ten years.  Allow training assignments and mutual aid agreements to continue, terminating in twenty years.

Substantially reduce air and sea forces actively engaged other than training outside US and territorial waters and airspace.

Recall all guard and military police units and begin border and boundary enforcement training for immediate national and territorial boundary enforcement deployment.

Begin decommissioning and disposal by sale all suitable facilities and equipment with the goal of zero deployment in foreign countries in ten years. 

Maintain deployable Rapid Deployment Strike force capability by sea, air and ground with minimum strategic equipment and weapons deposits at fewer than 24 locations worldwide.

In other words, change a portion of the military mission to actual National Defense, sealing our borders to intrusion for any purpose from incursions, unlawful trafficking, to illegal immigration by land, sea or air.

Stop all excursions into the affairs of other nations or countermanding lawlessness not a direct threat to overwhelming national security and commercial interests.  Secure the safety of our citizens during travel for tourism and commerce, and secure the transit of US goods or services and their necessary assets against potential interruption or unlawful seizure. 

Otherwise, focus on staying at home protecting our homeland and our people.

The savings could be as many as three hundred thousand active duty military and more than fifty thousand civilians, and hundreds of billions of dollars more in equipment and support costs annually.      

Use the savings only to begin paying down our ridiculously excessive National debt.

Our nation’s future security, prosperity and freedom depend upon it.

Don’t wait, start tomorrow!