Archive | March 2016

Donald Trump should unite us, not divide us

Trump’s campaign has morphed into an “us versus them” situation. The Donald’s bubble finally burst recently with massive rallies denouncing his bullish behavior and total lack of ability to hold the office of US presidency. World leaders except for Russian bad boy Putin consider him a colossal joke but Trump isn’t a joke. He’s a serious contender for the Republican nomination for president. How on Earth did this happen? Surely the Republicans could and should do better with a man or woman with taste, dignity, substance and style as well as intelligence, tact and experience. I believe they can as they have in the past. Why not now? Americans from all over are disgusted by the fissures in our government. There is little or no bi-partisanship. Immigration begs for reform. The last time that happened was under Ronald Reagan in 1986. Every time there is a proposal, and there have been several worthwhile bi-partisan ideas over the years, the extreme right wing Tea party throws tantrums. They absolutely refuse to budge. Shame on you for not compromising. Compromise is what politics is all about.

Trump represents everything that’s wrong with American society starting with a deeply fissured government that can’t seem to agree on anything but their perks and salary increases. They always reward themselves handsomely while neglecting the American people. When was the last time the federal minimum wage was raised? I can’t remember either.

War, of course, always unites our government. They rub their hands together thinking about who to invade next. We have to keep those pesky defense lobbyists happy, don’t we? For every one member of Congress there are two defense lobbyists knocking on their doors with promises of campaign donations to grease the war machines. You guessed right that peace takes a back seat to continued death, destruction and mayhem in other countries. Peace isn’t profitable but it sure is priceless. By the way, Americans are sick to death of war. That’s one of the main reasons the president didn’t take more decisive action with Syria. We didn’t want to get involved, even though we are deeply concerned for the Syrian people. As it stands, Americans realized that the Iraq and Afghanistan invasions were a costly folly both in terms of loss of life (theirs and ours) and dollars. Who wants to risk it yet again?

Instead of demonstrating leadership, which we all sorely need, Congress acts like school children with hissy fits and completely shut down government when they cannot agree. That’s happened before and who’s to say it won’t happen again. Shame on them for such childish behavior. GOP candidate Rafael Cruz is known for shutting down government despite the harm it does to the nation. Rafael has to stand by his principles, of course.

Then there’s the loss of decent paying jobs. It’s those darn unions. Blame them for demanding decent wages, paid vacation, and safe working conditions. Imagine that. The GOP despises unions and at every given chance passes anti-union legislation by calling it right to work. It’s more like the right to be fired. So jobs flow overseas because employers like cheap labor. They the lack of environmental laws too. So does Donald Trump. His signature clothing line is made in Mexico. As long as Americans want maternity leave, health care, and paid vacation expect the job hemorrhage to continue. Trump cannot stop the jobs bleeding despite his dithering and bellowing. You’re a mighty moron is you believe him.

Donald Trump cannot fix America. He’s part of what’s wrong with America. He’s brought out the worst in people, such as ignorance, hatred, despair, violence, and intolerance. Only we as people can fix ourselves. Donald Trump is a symbol of widespread weakness, not a sign of hope. We should unite around our country and not be divided because of him. We are all Americans regardless of our race, religion, creed, sexuality, or whatever. If you love this country and there are many people who do, it’s time to end the hatred. End the despair. A Democratic president won’t be the panacea we need either but Clinton or Sanders is a far more palatable choice than Trump or Cruz both of whom have demonstrated poor qualities to become president and leader of the free world. Take an interest in your neighbor, your community, and your government. During the 2014, only 35% of all registered voters cast a ballot. There are thousands of people who aren’t even registered to vote. That’s a disgrace really. It’s our country, our world, and be part of the healing, not the hating. Please do not vote for Trump or Cruz. With the Democratic candidates there’s some shred of hope.

 

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When fists fly

When fists fly

Never before has a presidential campaign rally (and I’ve been to some) been marked by flying fists, uncontrolled rage, threats of bodily harm, and frightening disdain for immigrants, Latinos, Blacks, Muslims, Jews, gays, and just about anyone who isn’t a White Republican. Trump opponents, even those who come in peace, are often pummeled to the ground and beaten until bloodied. Arrests are made; a member of the US Air Force in Tucson was recently taken into custody for beating a Bernie Sanders supporter (who caused no unrest) at a Trump rally. Was that necessary? Of course it was not but that vile, despicable behavior represents the kind of men and women who flock to Trump. What does that tell you? It scares the heck out of me that such people could be my neighbors. I may even know a few of them. What a dreadful thought.

Never before has a presidential candidate threatened riots, yes riots, if he doesn’t get the Republican nomination. Oh come on sore loser, that’s life. What kind of candidate is this who wants to represent the USA and the rest of the free world? Further, what’s up with the people who support such a deviant? What kind of values do you hold? Trump’s psycho behavior is much like that of the mad man who rules the isolated state of North Korea.

Never before has a candidate lacked the skills and qualities to be president yet the vast majority of Republicans say he’s their man. Makes me wonder then about the Republican Party? What kind of people are you? Admittedly, the Democrats are not perfect. We make mistakes. We can and should do better but have you seen a KKK member at a Sanders or Clinton rally? Has Sanders or Clinton threatened to beat up anyone? Has Sanders or Clinton spoke disparagingly about Muslims, Mexicans, immigrants, or anyone else in such contemptible, filthy, or vulgar terms as Trump has? Trump hasn’t even been a successful business man. He’s filed for bankruptcy at least 2 or 3 times, he’s on wife number three and he offers no concrete plans for our deep-seated social, economic and domestic problems. He cannot stop the flow of jobs to China, Mexico, or anywhere else corporations want to send them. There are threats around the world that need true diplomacy to handle. Trump hasn’t a clue how to bring peace to anyone anywhere. In fact, world leaders, even our allies, are adamantly against a Trump presidency.

I am disgusted, ashamed, sickened, and appalled that anyone plans to vote for this classic hatemonger. I value a two party system. I favor a capitalist economy. I am open minded, well read and consider anyone who supports Trump to be an idiot, plain and simple. If you still follow my page, expect more of these same posts. I have nothing in common with you. Nothing. Nada. Please register to vote. Support the Democratic nominee whoever it turns out to be. Don’t be disgruntled if your candidate loses. We need a united front to defeat the cancerous evil destroying our country. Only you can stop Trump by voting Democratic. Save the USA. Save the world. Don’t disappoint me please.

An evening with my sisters

For a change, our Quran group met at a sister’s house last evening for food, fun, and friendship. The week before, we had agreed that about four or five sisters would demonstrate how to prepare their favorite dish (ours too). The kitchen was alive with the enticing aroma of spices to make salad, lamb, soup, vegetables and much more. Sisters gathered around the stove and the dishes slowly came to life. Others prepared tasty salads with beans, potatoes, carrots, cabbage, and plenty of healthy ingredients. Those like me who don’t cook brought healthy snacks to munch on. The atmosphere pulsed with delight as women relaxed to talk, eat, and laugh. Children played games, giggled, and ran around. At sundown, we broke for Magrib (the fourth of fifth daily prayers). Not only did we celebrate our usual weekly gathering but we welcomed a new sister to our group, a woman who recently moved to the area. Further, we were delighted to see a sister who hadn’t attended in several months due to health issues. The camaraderie among us is strong. We share a tight bond as Muslim women and as friends. There is respect, dignity and belonging in addition to our love of Islam. This by the way is the true face of Islam, not what you read about in the biased pressed or the drivel you learn about from uninformed leaders. We are dignified, honorable women with jobs, educations, and families. Any doubt? Join us for a Quran group. Want to learn more? Attend a mosque service. You won’t hear a whisper of hate. That’s not what we’re about at all. I am blessed to be among a circle of caring, kind and compassionate people. Thank you Allah.

Why America Hates Again

Donald Trump’s opponents flipped his campaign slogan, Make America Great Again, and renamed it to Make America Hate Again. Some say Make America Kind Again. However you look at the slogan, Trump’s rallies are rife with vile, nasty, hateful and contemptible comments about immigrants, Muslims, Mexicans, Democrats, liberals, gays, Blacks, women, disabled, and just about anyone who isn’t a bitter angry White Republican. How come the vitriol? I’ve tried to figure it out myself.

Since 2008 when Barak Obama was first elected (he won fair and square), the Republican Party along with a biased and often downright mean-spirited media (led by Fox) has thwarted his every move, even when it would benefit the American people. Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) boldly announced he would do everything he could to make Obama a one term president. Mr. McConnell failed in that regard but he plowed all his energy into ambushing the president’s goals, every single one of them. The Republicans refused to act on his judicial nominations, leaving federal courts back-logged with cases often for years. Justice was often not served. Congressional Republicans sidelined immigration reform, even though employers begged for workers to fill open slots Americans refused to take. Without immigrant labor many industries would grind to a halt. The Republicans voted over 50 times to de-fund the Affordable Health Care act but yet offered no viable alternative for the millions of uninsured. I was once gainfully employed but without health insurance then involved in a serious car accident. That’s for another story. The president finally offered concrete plans to combat climate change that past administrations ignored but only through executive orders. Even then, the radical Republicans threatened legal action to stop these desperately needed measures that would help save the rapidly heating planet. Democrats sadly cowered in corners refusing to take strong stands against their bullish colleagues. Why? I’m not sure. Admittedly, the president faltered at times. What president, Democrat or Republican, has not? So why are thousands of Americans drawn to a buffoon who insults people, has the diplomatic skills of a mole, and instigates violence at his rallies?

Americans blinded with hate, dependent on Fox for their news, and desperate for a scapegoat to unload their worries on suck up Trump’s shrieks and shills. Trump’s promises to make America great again are as empty as Fox media’s efforts to broadcast unbiased news. Neither will happen anytime soon. Few if any of Trump’s followers really know the issues at hand or even care to know the truth behind the 2006-07 recession. Was it Obama’s fault? He wasn’t even in office then yet he shoulders the blame. The finance industry created the complicated mess that almost collapsed the world wide economy. Its roots lie squarely on Wall Street. See the movie or read the book, The Big Short, for a layman’s explanation of the crisis that caused millions of people to lose their homes, jobs, pets and even their lives. Almost no one was held accountable with a jail sentence. The ensuing recovery has been uneven. Big banks are still over-leveraged and most Americans have no idea what a collateralized debt obligation is. If you don’t know, you should find out because the banks are still engaged in the same risky behavior. Democratic leaders did try to enact responsible laws to rein in the big banks after the recession but guess who had them watered down?

Climate change can no longer be ignored but guess what political party still ignores the problem? Coal is dirty energy. More and more power plants are converting to cleaner energy sources as a way to stop cooking the planet. Parts of the USA, such as Appalachia, have record unemployment as a result. Thousands of miners naturally blame the Democrats, the party more in favor of clean energy. Republicans shrug off rising oceans, catastrophic droughts, record storms, melting mountain snow and other changing weather patterns. Well paying mining jobs have sustained generations throughout Appalachia. Now those jobs are disappearing and there are few alternatives to replace them. A job at Wal-Mart doesn’t pay enough to raise a family. As a result, miners fall on hard times. So what happens? They turn to Trump for salvation. Can he stop the hemorrhage of jobs? Of course he can’t. But his angry bluster sounds good to them and they buy it, believing Trump will re-open the mines and return their jobs. That’s not about to happen, not by a long shot. The demand for coal in the USA has dried up and environmentalists are working hard to end the demand world-wide. There is no such thing as clean coal. Coal use must end or we may never be able to reverse climate change. Even Republicans will suffer when rising oceans swallow up coastal cities or drought so severe causes the next major war.

The unemployed Republicans, men and women, hold immigrants culpable because their decent job was outsourced to Mexico. Trump the savior vows to end the practice and bring back the jobs from those evil Mexicans. Going to happen? Another pipe dream. Corporations move jobs off shore to save money. Plain and simple. Trump’s over-inflated ego will not end that practice. In fact, his line of clothing is made in Mexico. What a hypocrisy.

The Donald wants to deport all undocumented immigrants living in the USA. There’s an estimated 10-11 million of them, mostly Latino but some are Asian, European, African and other races. They’ve lived and worked here for generations. Bi-partisan efforts have surfaced over the years to compromise on immigration reform but the radical Tea Party Republicans, America’s own Taliban, always de-railed those efforts. There has not been immigration reform since the Reagan years. He left office in 1988. Don’t you think it’s time? A massive deportation isn’t the answer nor is a wall between Mexico, one of our largest trading partners.

The nastiness never ends either. He’s slandered Muslims like me. I don’t appreciate the groveling about us Muslims. We’re good, decent people. Trump claims that all mosques preach hate. Obviously, he’s never been to a mosque. I’ve never missed a Friday service in almost two years and I’ve never once heard anything except sermons about family, friendship and community. Yet his ignorant followers soak up his devilish drivel and believe that all Muslims are evil. Only a handful stray from the Prophet’s message of peace and I don’t need to mention what they’ve done. It’s all over the news. They do not represent mainstream Islam. Stop believing everything you hear on Fox TV. It’s mostly lies and deceit.

What will you do? Be open minded? Or be a buffoon like him? Vote Democratic, whether it’s Clinton or Sanders. Prevent a dangerous psychopath in the White House. There’s time to make a difference. Register to vote and cast a ballot. If you don’t vote, then Trump will be the leader of the free world. What a frightful, horrifying thought.

 

 

 

Donald Trump isn’t your answer

I browsed through Trump’s Facebook page, feeling sick to my stomach. Supporters honestly believe Trump will bring back jobs lost to China, Viet Nam, Malaysia, Mexico, etc. Wrong. It won’t happen. American companies send jobs overseas because labor is cheaper, much cheaper. An average worker in China makes about $50 a month. Let that figure sink in. Workers do not receive paid vacations, health care benefits, family medical leave, or the other perks Americans are used to. They cannot sue for wrongful termination or for anything at all. Organize a union? Forget about it. Chinese workers often live in dormitories on factory premises. They can be called to work in the middle of the night for big orders. Imagine that in the USA? No way. American companies can also flout labor rights, environmental standards and food safety laws in Third World nations. Adhering to our high standards is costly. Moving operations overseas saves the companies a big bundle of money. Don’t think for a minute that Trump will change this. He can’t and he won’t, no matter what kind of bluster he promises. He simply cannot force a private business to change its practices. Besides, the Donald’s line of clothing is made in Mexico too. Just peek at the labels. They say made in Mexico. You know the Mexicans, the people he refers to as rapists, slime, etc. make his clothing. By the way, Mr. T, you also cannot force a sovereign nation to build a worthless wall between us and them. It won’t work anyway. Build a 20 foot wall and someone will build a 21 foot ladder to get over it.

Others say they support Trump because he speaks his mind. So do drunks, drug addicts, hate mongers, idiots, foul mouth pimps, and big mouths at a Suns game. Does that make any of them fit for public office? Of course not. No. I speak my mind, just as I am doing now. I am not in any way qualified to be president of the USA. Although if you had a choice between me and Trump, chose me.

Small minded people chose Trump because like him they are bigots. They are hateful people with a grudge against someone. They cannot admit they have narrow minds but they’re dumb enough to spill out their guts in public by saying how much they despise Muslims, immigrants and others. Just read their on-line posts. It’s enough to make you sick. Most of them, judging by their white skin color and last names, are probably Christians. No offense to the many White Christians who are as offended by Trump as I am. They will not vote for him just as I will not. I know many true Christians devoted to Christ who serve the Lord daily. Thank you for your kindness and compassion. But Trump’s Christians are a disgrace. Just as Muslims who follow ISIS are a disgrace. They are a blemish to our religion and in no way reflect the values of the world’s 1 billion Muslims.

Trump promises to be the greatest jobs president ever, another empty campaign shill. There are deep pockets of poverty and unemployment in parts of the USA such as Appalachia caused by a steep decline in the coal industry. Coal fired plants are a major cause of global warming. We simply cannot continue cooking the planet with coal. There is clear, convincing evidence that the planet is warming up too fast. Weather patterns are changing and oceans are rising. Fossil fuels are the primary reason. I am deeply sorry for the miners who lost their jobs but Trump won’t bring them back. He can’t. The USA and the rest of the world are finally waking up to the harsh reality that we need to shift our energy needs to solar, wind and other non lethal sources. There is no such thing as clean coal. All coal is dirty and dangerous. And if we continue sideline climate change, the planet will be worthless in years to come. Where does that leave our descendents?

Trump has the diplomatic skills of a flea. He is crass, rude, foul mouthed, vulgar, and abrupt. As the leader of the free world, we need a man or woman with taste, class, style, patience, and intelligence, qualities that he clearly lacks. As a business man, he was not a stellar success. He started out with millions because his dad left it to him. He is an outsider and as an outsider he doesn’t understand the nature of politics, anyone’s politics including our own. He will not bring the change people want. He cannot change Washington as he thinks he can.

The voters who didn’t care enough over the years to cast a ballot helped to create this savage beast. Every American citizen has the right to vote, whether you are native born or naturalized. Most Americans do not vote. Shame on you, whether Democrat, Republic or whatever. They do not care enough to even find out what goes on in the nation’s capitol. Then when you know what hits the fan, they get angry. They demand change. Well, my dear Americans, if you had bothered to vote all these years we might not have a gridlocked Congress. We may never have illegally invaded Iraq because they had nothing to do with 9/11. We might have a more congenial government. We might have immigration reform. All of you who never bothered to vote are the reason we have a demagogue like Trump. And if he’s elected, it’s your fault too if he ruins the country and the rest of the free world. Get off your behind and register. Don’t vote for him. Save America and save the world. Vote for the Democratic candidate. Please wake up. Trump isn’t your answer.

America is great Mr. Trump

The leading Republican contender for president, Donald Trump, has a signature line that says make America great again. America is already great Mr. Trump and Muslims in Arizona help make it so. If he wasn’t so busy bashing us, he might have noticed our good work. Take for instance the American Muslim Women’s Association of Arizona, an all volunteer group in the Phoenix area. Last Saturday a group of AMWA volunteers, board members and friends performed regular community outreach, this time with Save the Family. Save the Family is a local non-profit that offers services to homeless families to keep them together. We made sandwiches and packed non-perishable groceries for their clients. Furthermore, AMWA dishes up a free nutritious meal once a month to homeless women and children at a private shelter in downtown Phoenix. AMWA sponsors a tutoring program for children of refugees. Not only has the program enhanced the children’s studies but they have made lasting friendships. So have the tutors, students from the Muslim Student Association at Arizona State University in Tempe. Now and then, a group of local Muslims volunteer with Feed My Starving Children, a Christian organization that packages dried food for hungry children around the world. On a regular basis, Muslim volunteers, including children, join their Christian neighbors at a church for the regular homeless breakfast program. The church offers free food to homeless people in addition to showers, clothing, toiletries, and other services. Local area mosques announce community projects and encourage members to sign up for events like neighborhood clean ups. There is an ever growing interfaith movement in Arizona that brings together people of all faiths in unity, friendship and community. Over dinner, Muslims, Christians, Jews, Sikhs and others talk to each other about ways to get along. We bridge gaps and make friends. During Ramadan last summer, our Quran group hosted a women’s Iftar, breaking of the fast, for women of all faiths. What a joy it was to break bread with my sisters. As the war in Syria rages on, Arizona Muslims responded with more than just duas or prayers, although prayers certainly help. Last summer, just one mosque sent almost 400 pounds of donated clothing to a refugee camp in Jordan. Locally, Muslims and our friends donate generously to refugees new to Arizona with used clothing and furniture. We help them learn English as a second language. Others teach computer and essential skills so refugees can become self-sufficient and productive citizens. America is great Mr. Trump. It is one heck of a country not just because of the exemplary work of Arizona Muslims but the work of Muslims and our friends everywhere in the USA. The USA is great because of all Americans who care about each other including refugees. We need a leader who lifts us up, not one who berates and insults people as you do at almost every chance. We need a leader who sees the good in humanity and that includes us Muslims. Don’t blame us all for the grievous mistakes of a few. As the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said if we don’t live as brothers (and I assume he included sisters) we’ll all perish together as fools. You make America look like a fool Mr. Trump. We are not a nation of fools. We are good, decent people with generous hearts and you are deceiving people into believing us Muslims as well as immigrants are second class citizens. We are not. Our friends know better. I wish you did too.

 

My post to save America

Donald Trump claims to love America but does he? Take a peek at a label on his clothing line. Where is it made? In Mexico, you know the country he loves to bash. Mexico, by the way, is one of America’s largest trading partners. A loss of their dollars would seriously dent our economy. Better watch what you say because maybe our neighbors to the South will keep their pesos at home. The result for the US economy won’t be pretty.

The US alleges, in most cases, to be against bullying. Who in their right mind would support bullying? Bullied children are hurt, both physically and mentally, often for life. Sadly, some drop out of school, become depressed or commit suicide. Yet America, or at least some of us, welcomes Mr. Trump with open arms, the nation’s number one bully. Explain to me please why this happens? I surely do not know. I thought we were above bashing and bullying.

Mr. Trump says he wants America to be great again. Haven’t you looked Mr. Trump? We already are great, no thanks to you and your narrow-minded supporters. Americans volunteer their time at food banks, homeless shelters, humane societies, schools, hospitals, religious institutions, parks, and so many other places. American people and companies generously support charities that include the arts, health care facilities, the environment, our beloved animals and so much more. What have you done to make America great? From what I see, you started a movement that makes America hate. We have a long history of hatred against Blacks. You recall legalized segregation, Mr. Trump, don’t you? I do. And the KKK, also known as the Klu Klux Klan, is America’s terror group, the rabidly anti Black terror group that openly supports you. These bands of thugs show up in the scary white robes at your rallies, without even the decency to show their faces. Surely you know what I mean Mr. Trump. Any adult raised in the US and educated in our school system cannot claim ignorance to the KKK as you have Mr. Trump. Shame on you, Mr. Trump, a man who wants to be president of the USA feigning ignorance about the KKK. The mere fact that you refuse to disavow them is more than disturbing. It is appalling. It is frightening. The Europeans, for whatever reasons, couldn’t stop Hitler’s ruinous rise to power. It’s not too late for America to derail Trump. How? It’s easy. Register to vote if you haven’t already. Secondly, cast a ballot in November. That’s how. Encourage everyone to vote for the Democratic candidate. And secondly, stand up for what’s right. Defend your brothers and sisters because you may be next.