Dallas Texas

All Lives Matter: Both Victims Of Police Overreaction, And Law Enforcement Protecting All Of Us!

The tragedies of this week–two African American males shot and killed by police without just cause in Louisiana and Minnesota–and the murder of five law enforcement personnel and wounding of seven others in Dallas, Texas during a peaceful demonstration against those incidents—are a shock to the nation, and one thing MUST be made very clear!

All lives matter, not just black lives, but white lives, Latino lives, Asian American lives, Native American lives, and “Blue Lives”, that of the law enforcement professionals who dedicate their lives to protection of all of us, but in so doing, face possible bodily harm and death every day.

We can be angry at law enforcement when it abuses its power and takes the lives of people who are no threat to them, but realize that the number of such cases, while seemingly too many, is still a miniscule number of cases as compared to the total number of good law enforcement people who get very little recognition or appreciation for the important work they do every day.

This is a time of sober reflection, and the hope that we can work to unite the nation, and not allow race baiting villains of any race to further incite violence.

This also requires politicians to stop provoking, but already being shown to be occurring, as with former Illinois Congressman Joe Walsh, former New York City Mayor Rudy Guiliani, and many right wing talk show hosts, who should understand the impact of their words, but still are reckless and demagogic!

Old Urban-Rural Battle Among States Now Battles Between Cities And Rural Areas Within The States!

The story of much of American history is the struggle and battles between the growing urbanization in America, and the desire of small town, rural America to keep “traditional values”.

So the South, heavily rural historically, has always held back against reform and change, and switched from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party in the half century since the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 under President Lyndon B. Johnson.

But now, in 2016, we are seeing a revolt, an uprising of growing urban areas and university towns in the South against “traditional values”!

So we see urban areas in many Southern states promoting becoming “sanctuary cities” for illegal immigrants; supporting gay and transgender rights; calling for minimum wage laws to be reinforced and to promote raises; and working to undermine the Confederate flag as an appropriate symbol in 21st century America!

These growing urban areas include such locations as Raleigh-Durham, Charlotte and Greensboro, North Carolina; Charleston, South Carolina; Atlanta, Athens and Savannah, Georgia; Gainesville and Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Jackson, Hattiesburg, and Oxford, Mississippi; Birmingham, Alabama; New Orleans, Louisiana; Little Rock and Fayetteville, Arkansas; Nashville and Knoxville, Tennessee; San Antonio, Dallas and Houston, Texas; and Louisville, Kentucky. The Democratic Party is growing in these areas, and African Americans and Latinos are a good percentage of that growth, and university towns are also part of the massive changes that are occurring toward progressive change.

But the rural dominated Republican legislatures are passing state pre-emption laws that deny these localities the ability to set up their own regulations and laws. Ironically, it means these Republican states are fighting to take away local controls, while fighting on the national level against centralized authority of the federal government!

The Five Greatest American Tragedies of the Past Half Century!

In the adult life of the author, if one were to judge what the five greatest American tragedies have been, whether man made or natural disasters, they would be the following in ranked order:

1. September 11, 2001–The worst tragedy in American history as 3,000 Americans were killed at the World Trade Center in New York City, along with deaths at the Pentagon in Washington, DC, and the bringing down of United Flight 93 in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, preventing the possible attack on and destruction of the US Capitol Building or the White House in Washington, DC by Muslim terrorists.

2. Hurricane Katrina on August 29, 2005 and the days after, which caused the flooding of New Orleans, coastal Mississippi, and the death of more than 1,300 people , with a very slow response by federal, state and local officials.

3. The truck bombing of the Oklahoma City Federal Building by Timothy McVeigh on April 19, 1995, causing the death of about 168 people, and the wounding of 680 other victims, the greatest terrorist act on American soil until September 11, 2001.

4. The assassination of President John F. Kennedy in a motorcade in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963.

5. The killing of seven astronauts in the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster on January 28, 1986, including the first teacher to go into space, Christa McAuliffe.

This list could be much longer, as we have experienced other disasters, but these five will always be remembered as the top of the list of tragedies!