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The Urgency Of Gun Control Legislation To Stop “War Zone” Syndrome, And Save Multitude Of Lives, While Preserving Reasonable Gun Rights

The shock of the Las Vegas Massacre, following the Orlando Pulse Massacre, the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre, and so many others, demands the attention of Congress, as the urgency of gun control legislation presents itself.

We must stop the “War Zone” Syndrome that has led to more deaths by domestic terrorists than on September 11, if one counts all the death since 2001.

No one is saying that the Second Amendment should be destroyed, although it is clear that the Founding Fathers did not intend for all citizens to have firearms, as the amendment discusses a “well regulated militia”, and not the concept of everyone carrying firearms, even those who are mentally ill or have had criminal convictions.

But to demand a return of the Brady Bill, named after Ronald Reagan’s Press Secretary, James Brady, permanently disabled by the Assassination attempt against Reagan in 1981, but not renewed under George W. Bush in 2004, is not to ask too much.

To demand that background checks be done on gun purchasers; that loopholes that allow people to buy weapons online and at Walmarts and at gun shows without any search about their backgrounds be ended; that mentally disturbed people not be allowed to purchase weapons; and that the concept of allowing the expansion of gun silencers legislation, allowing gun owners to be able to fire at will without any sound being made for the potential victims to be aware of the sounds so they could duck or evade; or other reasonable measures, should be seen as sensible.

We have the highest gun violence rate of any Western civilized nation, comparing to Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, and we must work to lower the death rate from suicide as well as violence against innocent civilians.

This should not be a partisan issue, as the Republicans, as well as the Democrats, need to see the issue of public safety as their major responsibility, and the National Rifle Association and its despicable leadership including Wayne La Pierre, who only are concerned with profits, must be defeated in their effect on our government policies.

All kinds of activities are licensed in our society, and guns need to be regulated in a responsible manner.

Constitution Day: 230 Years And In Danger From Donald Trump In 2017, But The Constitution Will Survive!

Tomorrow, September 17, is the 230th Anniversary of the signing of the Constitution by 39 delegates at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia.

The so called “Founding Fathers” brought about a document that was not perfect, but has survived through the crises of the Civil War; the Great Depression; the two World Wars; the Watergate Crisis; and now faces the challenge of the most dangerous Chief Executive in American history bar none!

By comparison to Donald Trump, Richard Nixon was a choirboy, dangerous in many ways, but also accomplished in many ways.

Nixon contributed some real positive developments in his five and a half years as President from January 20, 1969 to August 9, 1974, while Donald Trump has accomplished essentially nothing, other than the adding of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.

Trump has threatened constitutional norms, with his attacks on civil rights, civil liberties, the news media, the judiciary, the intelligence community, and the basic institutions of government, including the government agencies themselves, which he is trying to decimate in their effectiveness and even in their numbers, when more is needed in a growing nation with 325 million people.

Trump has threatened the security and safety of millions of Americans of minority religious and racial groups, and he has had the support of white supremacists, Neo Nazis, Neo Confederates, and the Ku Klux Klan, which he tries to equate with those opposed to these groups.

Trump has undermined our relations with our allies in Europe and Asia, and the tensions with North Korea have been increased by his reckless tweets and rhetoric, and the same goes for Cuba, Iran, Venezuela, adding to the potential for military intervention everywhere.

Our relations with our direct neighbors, Mexico and Canada, are at the worst in many decades, and our closest ally, the United Kingdom (Great Britain), is becoming more exasperated by Trump’s utterances. The same situation exists with Germany, France, South Korea, and Japan, and our major rivals, China and Russia are perplexed with Trump as well.France

There is great concern that Trump might use nuclear weapons, which no official other than the Secretary of State can even discuss with him directly under present policy, and Trump has the final say on that.

There is also concern that Trump could attempt to declare martial law if there was another September 11 type of attack by terrorists, suspending the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

And to top it off, Trump seems to many to have a form of dementia, maybe Alzheimers, or just mental instability that is often a problem with aging seniors, but having him in a position which could provoke world wide war and disaster is an alarming circumstance of massive proportions.

Trump is a danger, but we must have confidence that the Constitution will survive his threat, but we must all be vigilant, and be ready to react if any threat seems evident as imminent.

The worst thing we could all do is trust Donald Trump, and sit back and just accept whatever he does, so thank goodness for the free, independent news media!

Hard To Believe: The Worst Week Of The Trump Presidency, And Every Week Is Worse Than The One Before!

Hard to believe, but this past week has been the worst week of the Trump Presidency and every week is worse than the one before!

Trump has gone after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the GOP Party Leader this week, alienating Republican Senators, and making for an awkward situation for McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao, who is Trump’s Secretary of Transportation.

He has ratcheted up the possibility of nuclear war against North Korea if any danger comes to our territory of Guam, or the possibility of a conventional war which would bring great destruction and death to our ally, South Korea, where the capital, Seoul, is less than a hour from the Demilitarized Zone, and millions of people live, including hundreds of thousands of Americans, a few million foreigners, and 28,000 American soldiers and their dependents.

Trump has also brought up the possibility of military intervention in Venezuela, which is a major problem, but we do not worry about human rights in other nations around the world, and instead promote the image of America, the imperialist nation, throwing its weight around in Latin America.

The last thing we need is to have military intervention in northeast Asia and in South America, to add on to the wars in Afghanistan, and against ISIS (ISIL) in the Middle East, along with alienating China, which we need as a supporter to curb the ambitions of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

Trump is out of control in foreign policy, and foreign leaders are shocked at his loose language, and building up the tensions on the Korean peninsula, something never witnessed with any other American President. Our allies in Europe, and in Canada, Australia, Mexico, Japan and South Korea are not quite sure how Trump can be contained in his dangerous rhetoric and impulsive actions.

And Trump also has ignored the mosque bombing in Minnesota, refusing to condemn it, and now the right wing White Supremacists (Neo Nazis, Ku Klux Klan, Alt Right) have provoked violence at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, leading to the death of one person and nineteen injured, and Trump refusing to condemn these groups, and acting as if all sides in the debate over the statue of Robert E. Lee being removed are equal, when that is the furthest from the truth. To compare left wing groups to the right wing as equals is totally preposterous, but Trump continues to refuse to repudiate the right wing extremists who promote racism, antisemitism, nativism, and misogyny, including such hate mongers as David Duke and Richard Spencer.

All this adds up to the reality that Donald Trump has been a disastrous President, is getting worse by the week, and the move ahead by Special Counsel Robert Mueller to question those who have worked in the West Wing of the White House is a major move toward bringing closer the end of the Trump Presidency, as grounds for impeachment are growing.

Many Republicans and conservatives have repudiated Trump in various ways, and my article on History News Network, just published on August 6, and on the right side of this blog, details the growing opposition to Trump, and makes clear the dangers he faces as we finish Month 7 of the Trump Presidency!

Donald Trump’s Love Affair With Authoritarian Leaders In Russia, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Philippines, China And Rejection Of Democratic Allies

One of the most mystifying aspects of the Trump Presidency is his absolute love affair, his “bromance”, not only with Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, but also with the authoritarian leaders of Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the Philippines, and China.

Russia is a growing threat to Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Poland, along with Ukraine, and one wonder what Trump would do if Putin decided to invade those nations.

Turkey’s leader promoted violence against demonstrators at the Turkish Embassy in Washington DC, and Trump has nary a comment to make.

Egypt’s leader has established a hard line dictatorship, after a brief period of an “Arab Spring” four to six years ago.

Saudi Arabia is the most despicable country when it comes to human rights, including involving women, and there are no free elections.

The Philippines leader has caused the mass murder of thousands of suspected drug dealers and users, but many of them totally innocent, and Trump applauds him.

China clearly is not a democracy, and while we must work with them on North Korea’s threat, Trump has become a cozy “friend” of its government, ignoring their violations of human rights, and their assertions of rights to the waterways off of Taiwan and Japan and South Korea.

Trump embraces human rights violators and threats to world stability, while being rude and disrespectful to the leaders of our major allied nations—Canada, Great Britain, France, Germany,Italy and Japan, as well as Australia and Mexico.

What is going on in the head of Donald Trump?

Why does he seem to worship authoritarianism and show contempt for democratic nations?

In so doing, Donald Trump is creating an unstable world, which the United States will pay for in blood and tears, in the long run, even after Donald Trump is finally out of office!

The Coming Foreign Trip Disaster Of Donald Trump

Donald Trump is about to engage in a nine day foreign trip, which is bound to be a total disaster.

He will visit Saudi Arabia, the home of the Muslim holy sites of Mecca and Medina, and it will be delicate to do so, after his anti Muslim rhetoric and his attempted Muslim bans.

He will visit Israel, after having revealed Israeli intelligence information to the Russian Foreign Minister and Russian Ambassador to the United States in the Oval Office, and backing away from the idea of recognizing Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, and hinting that Israel must agree to concessions to the Palestinians, as he pursues “the art of the deal”. Also, he has refused to visit Masada, since he cannot have his helicopter go to the top of Masada, and is unwilling to take a cable car to the Mount. He also plans only 15 minutes at the Holocaust Memorial, Yad Vashem, which will alienate many Israelis and American Jews.

He will visit Vatican City and Pope Francis, and has been highly critical of the Pope, who has been dismissive of Trump’s rhetoric and his planned Mexico Wall.

He will be at the NATO summit in Belgium, having alarmed members at his on and off attitudes towards the significance of the alliance, and his pro Russian tendencies that are now being investigated, and could lead to his Presidency in flames.

He will also be be at the G-7 summit with our major economic partners–Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan, to be held in Sicily, Italy.

There will be plenty of opportunity for flubs, blunders, embarrassments, and Trump is not good at sitting through long sessions, gets bored easily, and is not willing to do the preparation, and reading, required to be knowledgeable and competent at international meetings with experienced and competent diplomats and foreign leaders.

Despite what Trump claims, he is NOT a good student, and clearly has a variation of Attention Deficit Disorder, along with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and a likely possibility of Dementia or Alzheimers.

Trump is not up to this trip, which is too long and detailed, and cannot sleep in his own bed, and he is very intense about actually being seriously tested and challenged, as his Presidency deteriorates around him.

Barack Obama made his first foreign trip to Canada, and George W. Bush to Mexico, and after what is likely to be a disastrous trip, who knows if Trump will not just hole himself up in the White House, and scream and yell at his family and his aides, as he faces the end of his Presidency, as a total disgrace to the institution of the Presidency!

The Republican Party Agenda In 2017: Destroy Obama Legacy And New Deal And Great Society, And Ignore Trump Abuse Of Power

The Republican Party of 2017 is hellbent on destroying entirely the Barack Obama legacy, and all political, social, and economic reforms of the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson, along with other reforms even by Republican Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush, and Democrats Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton.

They are willing to cope with the insanity of Donald Trump, willing to ignore the abuse of power by the 45th President, and in the process, undermine civil liberties, civil rights, labor rights, women’s rights, consumer rights, protection of the environment, and the rights and protection of the disabled, elderly, and poor among our population.

In the past, the Republican Party was the conservative mainstream in American politics, but now the most mean spirited, nasty, uncaring elements have held sway over the party apparatus, and no longer care what public opinion polls indicate, that there is strong, vehement opposition to going back to the America of the Gilded Age and the 1920s, and in so doing, destroy all progress, and put America further behind more advanced nations in Europe, as well as Canada, Australia, and New Zealand worldwide.

Twenty Nine “Developed” Nations Have Universal Health Care Coverage, But America Refuses To Come Into The 21st Century On Health Care!

Twenty nine “developed” nations in the world have Universal Health Care Coverage, including the following:

In Europe, 21 nations, including:

Great Britain
France
Germany
Italy
Spain
Portugal
Netherlands
Belgium
Luxembourg
Norway
Sweden
Finland
Denmark
Iceland
Switzerland
Austria
Hungary
Poland
Czech Republic
Greece
Slovenia

Also, Turkey and Israel in the Middle East have Universal Health Coverage.

Additionally, in Asia and the Pacific, there are 4 nations which have such coverage.

Japan
South Korea
Australia
New Zealand

Also, Canada in North America and Chile in South America have such coverage.

So why does the United States NOT have it?

The power of the health insurance companies lobby is one factor, and the refusal of the Republican Party and the conservative movement to be willing to accept that health care coverage and the protection of life beyond the pregnancy stage should be a guaranteed part of government policy, through a national health care program that covers all Americans, including even undocumented immigrants, are the reasons.

It is time for America to come into the 21st century, and decide that health care is not a privilege, but a basic human right!

Donald Trump’s Confused Mental State And Erratic Behavior: A Call For Mike Pence To Invoke The 25th Amendment, Section 4, NOW!

A national crisis has now arisen, as the behavior of Donald Trump in the past 72 hours demonstrates a confused mental state and erratic behavior.

His statements about Andrew Jackson, the Civil War, and Kim Jong Un of North Korea, and his general lack of knowledge and clarity on many domestic and foreign policy issues is extremely troubling and dangerous, particularly at a time when war with North Korea seems likely soon, and Trump has power over the nuclear codes.

Trump is undermining our relations with our allies, South Korea and Japan, which are directly affected by Trump’s changing stance on North Korea.

Trump is harming our relations with our border neighbors, Canada and Mexico.

Trump is confusing our major rivals, China and Russia, as well as Iran and ISIL (ISIS).

Trump is worrying our major allies in Europe (Great Britain, Germany, and France), and the whole NATO alliance system which has worked so well since 1949.

His own Republican Party cannot fathom his constantly changing views on health care, and his war on the federal government agencies.

Trump is an embarrassment to himself, with his total lack of knowledge and facts on history and science.

It is hard to imagine that we have had a more ignorant, clueless President than Donald Trump, with only possibly Warren G. Harding, and maybe George W. Bush competing for that dubious honor, but even they had some competent cabinet members and advisers, while it seems no one can stop Trump or control him in any fashion.

Yes, there is James Mattis and H R McMaster, and Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, but none of these people seem to be able to stop the reckless statements and weird behavior of Donald Trump.

It is time for Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, Section 4, in consultation with Congressional leaders, and become “Acting President”, until and when Donald Trump is pushed to resign or be forced out by impeachment, as incompetent and dangerous mentally to hold the office of President of the United States.

We cannot afford to have a nuclear war or some other kind of major war or other disaster, because government leaders are unwilling or courageous enough to take action on a timely basis!

Donald Trump Border Wall With Mexico—1989 Miles, 30 Feet High, Never Will Be Built, And Would Be Boondoggle Financially!

The proposed Mexico Wall of Donald Trump will never be built. The price tag is uncertain: could it be 10 Billion? 20 Billion? 70 Billion? Such a project would be a 1,989 mile, 30 feet high wall, that cannot be built in many areas due to topography, including deserts, rugged hills, and two rivers (the Colorado and Rio Grande), and is opposed by many as unworkable, and sends a horrible message about the United States internationally. It would be a wall that would not prevent drugs, or human trafficking, and would cost loss of trust between two neighbors who share the 10th longest boundary between nations in the world. No wall or barrier has ever prevented breaching such an edifice, and it will happen in this case, were the wall to be built.

The Great Wall of China was built over many centuries, and never effectively barred invasions or prevented wars, and presented a psychological barrier for China, isolating it from the Western world, but in so doing, causing it to fall behind the West, and eventually be exploited in the 19th century by European powers. Disrepair, vandalism, and graffiti became common, and it never really advanced the Chinese economy. It marked China as backward.

The Berlin Wall, built by the Soviet Union beginning in 1961, and being destroyed in 1989, just 28 years in existence, marked the Soviets as a nation trying to stop the promotion of freedom, but the Wall was overcome by some courageous Germans, and became a symbol of the oppression of human liberty. It was a sign of the ultimate failure of Soviet Communism, with a humiliating ending in November 1989.

America gains nothing from such a wall, except to stoke fear and hatred in Mexico, and even in Canada, which has the largest land boundary in the world with the US, 3,997 miles between the 48 states and Canada, and an additional 1,538 between Alaska and Canada, for a total of 5,525 miles.

America’s reputation will be further undermined by a financial boondoggle that will be seen, were it to be built, as a negative development, which will help to sink Donald Trump to the bottom of the Presidential list all time.

It would insure that America would lose the respect and stature that it has had since World War II, as we wall off our nation, and make a very public judgment as to the inferiority of the people of Mexico and Central America, and further make America look like an imperialist nation, which has no respect for the people south of us in our hemisphere.

Donald Trump’s First Hundred Days: An F Grade Is Appropriate! Neil Gorsuch Is The Only “Accomplishment”!

This is the season for judgment on Donald Trump’s First Hundred Days, and being a professor of history and political science, as well as a lecturer, blogger, and published author of two books and many articles, the conclusion is clear.

Donald Trump gets a F for his performance, easily the least accomplished President in the first Hundred Days, with only one major accomplishment, the approval by the US Senate of his Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch.

But even that only came about because of the Republican decision to abandon the filibuster rule, therefore allowing Gorsuch to be confirmed without a 60 vote margin usually required before a final vote. And it seems likely that Gorsuch will, sadly, take America backwards, maybe more so than his predecessor, Antonin Scalia. Gorsuch will affect constitutional law in a detrimental way, based on his earlier record as a circuit court judge.

Otherwise, Trump has been all bluster and bullyism, who has made many promises, and none of them nearing fulfillment. Trump’s public opinion ratings are by far the lowest of any President since polling began, particularly at this early a stage of his time in office. He has never had the majority of the nation behind him, either in the election, during the transition, or now after a hundred days in office.

Donald Trump has done more to divide America in his first Hundred Days than any previous President, and he relishes conflict, rather than compromise and unity. He has pitted his white working class supporters against minorities, and yet he is showing lack of any concern about those who supported him. There are signs already of disillusionment and “buyer’s remorse” by many who voted for Trump.

He has promised a Mexico Wall which will not work, if it is ever built, and it will add many tens of billions to the national debt, and Mexico is not going to pay for the Wall, and one hopes Trump is not ready to start a war with our neighbor, as he has more than enough foreign policy problems as it is.

He saw his National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn, forced to resign in less than a month, and there has been total chaos, anarchy, and disarray with the White House staff, with the only good thing being the lessening of the influence of right wing radical Stephen Bannon, and the rise of the influence of Ivanka Trump, and her husband Jared Kushner. It is hoped that the couple will have a humanizing influence on Trump, which would be a good thing.

Meanwhile, the Russian connection to Trump is still being investigated, and could force him out of office at some point. But meanwhile, Trump has been saber rattling with North Korea and Iran, and has bombed Syria and Afghanistan, and continues to promise the total destruction of ISIL (ISIS). Relations with Russia, at least publicly, are deteriorating as well.

Trump has managed to create hostility and antagonism with such allies as Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada, and Australia, while seemingly cozying up to China over the Korean issue, and therefore changing his hostile tone in the campaign toward China.

Trump has shown his total ignorance of history and of science, and has declared war on the environment, on consumer rights, on labor rights, on women’s rights, on the Hispanic community, on African Americans, and on the health care system itself. He seems unconcerned about the loss of health care for 24 million Americans, and is just out to trash his predecessor, Barack Obama.

His appointments to his cabinet are atrocious, and we have the most terrifying Attorney General in all of American history in Jeff Sessions.

Trump has failed to gain any legislative accomplishments, and has, instead, used twice as many executive orders than his last two predecessors, but many are mean spirited and negative, undermining our values and the historical accomplishments of government in the past hundred years since Franklin D. Roosevelt, and including Republican Presidents, as well as Democrats.

Trump makes Richard Nixon look much better, and even the weaknesses and shortcomings of George W. Bush pale by comparison, as at least Bush was a decent human being, while wrong headed.

His anti immigrant, nativist stand is a stain on history, and the tragedy of deportation of children protected under executive order of Barack Obama adds to the horrors of families being torn apart.

His condemnation of the judiciary is detrimental to respect for the law, and his Muslim bans have been held up by courageous federal court judges.

Trump, in many ways, is the third President without a party, as there is a major split in the Republican Party, and there are many officeholders and conservative journalists and intellectuals who have major problems with him. John Tyler and Andrew Johnson are the earlier Presidents who had no party backing, but Trump was elected, while they were not, but Trump’s constant switches of position, and his lying, and insulting, undermine his Presidency dramatically.

Donald Trump comes across, ultimately, as the least likable President, if one judges by his character, his behavior, and his basic values.

Trump has no background, experience, knowledge, or ethical standard to be our President, and one must recall that 54 percent of those who voted, were against him, and he is the 7th lowest popular vote percentage winner of all Presidents, with the others–John Quincy Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Bill Clinton, Richard Nixon, and James Buchanan–all having two or three opponents who won electoral votes, while Trump only had Hillary Clinton as an electoral vote competitor. And Hillary won the biggest margin of popular votes of any losing candidate–2.85 million popular votes.

The nightmare of Donald Trump has just begun, and America is a loser for having, somehow, elected this egomaniac and narcissist, who is only out for his own glorification!