Martin Luther King

What Beau Biden’s Death Shows About Joe Biden And The American People

The tragic and tormenting death of Beau Biden, the older son of Vice President Joe Biden, of a brain tumor at age 46, was not the first time that a President or Vice President has experienced the death of a family member while in office.

Presidents, including Franklin Pierce, Abraham Lincoln, Calvin Coolidge and John F. Kennedy had also had the death of children while in office.

Presidents, including John Tyler, Benjamin Harrison, and Woodrow Wilson had wives die while in office.

But Beau Biden, while not a child, had come to be highly respected as Delaware Attorney General, and serving in the Army National Guard during the Iraq War.

Beau Biden resembled his dad in appearance, and in many ways, in his zeal to serve in public life.

Beau Biden gained the emotional support of many Delaware citizens and anyone else he touched in his public life, as well as people he knew in his private life.

The public response to his death, with the potential for his future lost forever, hit many Americans very hard, including this author, who thought of the tragic death of others in public service in their 40s, all of whom were much more consequential than Biden was. The names of John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, and Alexander Hamilton crossed his mind.

The question that arose is why this shock and deep mourning occurred, and the author came to the conclusion that a lot of the reaction was due not only to the good nature and great public service of Beau Biden, but the widespread love and emotional attachment of millions of Americans to Vice President Joe Biden himself.

Joe Biden is in his 43rd year of public service, and it is not only this author, but millions of others who love him, who respect him, who admire his sincerity, genuine nature, true concern and desire to do good deeds for his fellow Americans.

Joe Biden is a very rare public servant, and that is why there are still millions who hope he runs for President, knowing the odds are against him to win the nomination, were he to challenge his close friend and fellow member of the Obama Administration, former Secretary of State and New York Senator Hillary Clinton.

Those of us who love and admire Joe Biden know he would make a great President, but that he is one of many good people, past and present, who cannot, likely, be elected President of the United States, a distinguished list.

Instead, it now seems likely that Joe Biden will end his 44 years of public service in January 2017, with the total admiration and respect of millions. The loss of his beloved son, Beau, and his own sense that it might be wise to give his family time to share the rest of his time on earth at age 74, have certainly sobered any desire to fight for the White House.

In a sense, Joe Biden saw the eulogies and deep mourning that he will gain when, at some day in the future, he leaves us. The death of Beau Biden gave us that dress rehearsal!

Senator Ted Cruz Praises The Late Senator Jesse Helms, Adding To The Image Of Cruz As The Most Dangerous And Divisive US Senator Today!

Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, a freshman, is like a bull in a China shop, still in his first year, but laying waste to his party establishment, and making enemies along the way, and thoroughly enjoying the attention he is getting, and unconcerned about the enemies which are piling up in the process!

Cruz, who looks eerily like the infamous Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin, and is the same age as McCarthy was when he became noticed (42), has already gained infamy by claiming that Harvard Law School professors were Communists, and advocating the Tea Party Movement desire to destroy ObamaCare, and go to war against everything Barack Obama stands for!

Now, Cruz has hit a new low, praising former Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina as a model for the Republican Party.

Helms, who died in 2008 at the age of 86, served thirty years in the US Senate, from 1973-2003, and “took no prisoners”, using racist tactics in his election campaigns, opposing a Martin Luther King national holiday, and being rude and nasty toward the first African American woman Senator, Carol Mosley Braun of Illinois, among other horrible actions!

Helms was a full scale segregationist in the age of civil rights, non apologetic for upholding the Confederate heritage, and never reformed in any form, unlike Senator Strom Thurmond of South Carolina and Governor George Wallace of Alabama, who both mellowed and reformed somewhat in their later careers.

Helms would go down as one of the most negative characters ever to serve in the US Senate, and yet, now, Ted Cruz has said that we should have 100 Jesse Helmses in the US Senate, and it would be a far better body!

What is going on in the mind of this man, Ted Cruz? Why is he declaring war on common decency and humanity, insulting both Democrats and fellow Republicans on a daily basis?

Well, Cruz wants to be President, and he will stop at nothing to achieve his goal, no matter how many victims he leaves in his wake!

Many Republicans are afraid, literally, of him and his tactics and personality, reminding too many of Senator McCarthy, which again, Cruz has an uncanny resemblance to, in facial features and aggressive personality!

McCarthy was eventually, and rightfully, censored by the US Senate, including most of his own colleagues, and it may come to a time where an action like that will be required to tone down this threat to order and stability in the Senate, and the nation at large!

While we are on this idea of needing “100” of a particular person, this author has better suggestions, although the concept of “100” is actually ridiculous!

But if we are to do so, how about 100 Bernie Sanders; 100 Elizabeth Warren; or going back to past Senators, how about 100 Robert La Follette, Sr; 100 George Norris; 100 Hubert Humphrey; 100 Ted Kennedy; 100 George McGovern; 100 Paul Wellstone; 100 Joe Biden?

Progressive March On Washington To Counteract Tea Party Movement This Coming Saturday!

A March On Washington is to take place on Saturday, October 2, promoted by 300 liberal groups–including the AFL-CIO, the NAACP, the National Council of La Raza, and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force–to promote the goals of education, justice and employment!

Making clear their opposition to the Senate refusing to get past the filibuster and take action on House bills, the various groups have declared their right to claim they are the inheritors of Martin Luther King., Jr. and his August 28, 1963 March on Washington, rather than Glenn Beck who supposedly “accidentally” chose the 47th Anniversary of the March to hold his Tea Party and conservative gathering on the Washington Mall!

The ideas that the March this Saturday are promoting include: raising the minimum wage, extending unemployment benefits beyond 99 weeks, solving the problem of home foreclosures, creating of infrastructure jobs, and solving the immigration crisis!

Interestingly, various religious groups are supporting the march, including the United Methodist Church, the United Church of Christ, the National Baptist Convention, and a number of Jewish groups!

Hopefully, the rally will draw more people than the August 28 March, with debate about how many actually showed up at that rally!

Glenn Beck Becomes The Leading Demagogue In America! :(

Glenn Beck has been on a rampage lately, condemning Christianity that promotes social and economic justice, rewriting American history to such an extent that it is unrecognizable, and critical of movements that promoted advancement of equal rights for racial and ethnic minorities, women, and gays! 🙁

When ignorant people think they are being educated about American history and religion from Glenn Beck, including on his web based university (a great money maker), we are in a sad state, as Beck totally distorts reality, and has the ability to manipulate and sway people who have no clue as to what is the truth about everything Beck enunciates!

Beck distorts the Founding Fathers, and condemns any President who promotes reform, and hails conservatives such as Calvin Coolidge, Warren G. Harding, and Ronald Reagan who set back progress in so many ways!

When Beck tried to claim, on the anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s I have a dream speech, that he was reviving what King did, it was a total fabrication, as King denounced states rights, which had led to discrimination, nullification and interposition claims, and Jim Crow segregation in the South! But now Beck and his Tea Party and Fox News followers glorify exactly what King denounced! 🙁

Beck is a very dangerous man, as he stirs up mostly older white people to hate everyone else, and to try to “take back” America! If those who believe in progressive reform and change, and advancement of civil rights and civil liberties remain silent, then lunatics such as Beck will succeed in distorting our freedom of religion, our education system, and our civil harmony! 🙁

Beck is exploiting for his own financial benefit and his own sick ego, and he must be answered and challenged, rather than ignoring him and giving him slack!

Beck is coming close to the Supreme Court definition in Schenck V. US (1919) of speech becoming a “clear and present danger”–that is, speech which provokes and endangers, as in the concept of shouting fire in a crowded theater! He could very well incite loony followers to engage in violence, with him having no motivation except his own aggrandizement! 🙁

The Truth About Glenn Beck: Be Skeptical Of His “Transformation”! :(

If one attended, or watched Glenn Beck yesterday on C Span , at the “Restoring Honor” rally in Washington, DC, he seemed very committed to unity and spoke more like a religious evangelist than a political firebrand!

It would be hard to find fault with his message, but it contradicted everything he has said on Fox News Channel and his radio shows, where he has called President Obama a racist, talked about the President as a Muslim, a Fascist, a Nazi, a Communist, a Socialist, a Marxist, a totalitarian, etc!

His rhetoric on television and radio encourages alarm, fear, trepidation, hysteria, and undermines the ability of this country to resolve its economic, social, and foreign policy problems! He has made millions promoting hate, poison, divisiveness, anger and despair, and he has aimed at splitting the American people based on race, religion, and ethnicity! 🙁

How can it be explained that Glenn Beck seemed so different yesterday on the Washington Mall? It is the fact, as the columnist John Avlon has declared, that there is a split personality, a good Glenn Beck struggling with a bad Glenn Beck!

It is clear that Glenn Beck is an opportunist, who is ultimately out to make as much fortune as he can, without considering the effect he has on the rest of us in this country! He realized that this rally yesterday could not be portrayed in the same light as his talk shows, because that would undermine the profit motive always in the forefront of his mind! Better to confuse the American public, some of which is clueless on Glenn Beck’s real motives!

Better for Beck to look reasonable and rational, but watch as he goes back to his emotional ranting and raving on his cable and radio shows!

To believe that Glenn Beck has reformed is to believe in the tooth fairy! Everything he has done is a ploy for his own advancement, and his willingness to besmirch the anniversary of the Martin Luther King, Jr. “I have a dream” speech, and claim he was not aware of the historical date is impossible to believe, as he is not an ignorant man, just a man willing to exploit for his own benefit!

Again, as expressed yesterday, we shall see whether Glenn Beck has reformed, but one can be certain that he is not going to do so, as that would upset many of his followers who prefer the Beck of cable and radio to the Beck of conciliation that we witnessed in wonderment yesterday!

The Glenn Beck “Restoring Honor” Rally In Washington, DC: A “New” Glenn Beck?

Fox News Channel and radio talk show host Glenn Beck, who has been on a rampage to divide America through his right wing extremist rhetoric, including his accusations of racism against President Obama, his stirring up of emotions over “illegal immigration” and the Muslim faith, and his distortion of American history and American leadership, held a rally today at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC, on the 47th anniversary of the Civil Rights March and the “I Have A Dream” speech of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The rally was organized to “restore honor”, to promote respect and honor for America’s military, and to promote the importance of God in everyone’s life! It included a niece of Dr. King, and St. Louis Cardinal star Albert Pujols and his manager, Tony LaRussa, as well as former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin!

The rally lasted a little more than three hours, and on the surface, seemed to do no harm, and had no obvious political intention, and the crowd, estimated at maybe up to a few hundred thousand, was orderly and avoided political signs or ugly manifestations as at less organized and attended “Tea Party” rallies in the past! It also included speakers and an audience of all races and nationalities, a refreshing sight!

What stood out though was the fact that no political leaders of Congress, no talk show hosts, no people of any prominence, other than the few mentioned above, showed up and were evident in the crowd!

It also stood out that Beck himself, while loving all the attention he was gaining, the praise that was visited on him by other speakers, and the reality that he is likely to gain financially from this through sale of more books and more listeners and viewers of his talk shows, actually sounded and seemed quite different than what we have heard in the past couple of years from him!

Beck seemed to be going out of his way to reconstitute himself as a changed man, a man who wants to promote unity and patriotism, a total change from what he has been doing, creating division and hate in his wake!

The wonderment is whether this is a true conversion, and an admission of his sins, or just a facade, and skeptics will await how he conducts himself in the weeks and months to follow to see if he is genuine, or the phony many people think he is!

We will keep track and see whether the “leopard” can change its spots! Don’t bet on it! 🙁

Civil Rights Pioneer Dorothy Height Passes Away At 98: A Truly Elegant Lady!

Dorothy Height, often considered the Godmother of the Civil Rights movement, the only woman on the stage when Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his “I Have A Dream” speech in August, 1963, died peacefully this morning at age 98.

Involved in the fight for civil rights for 80 years, she was always in the forefront ever since the author was a young man, and she always impressed with her elegance, her wisdom, her dignity, and her humanity!

She headed the National Council of Negro Women for a long time, and was intimately committed to every civil rights cause for many decades, and demonstrated tremendous courage and foresight in all of her public appearances and activities!

Dorothy Height will go down as possibly the single most significant woman in the civil rights crusade, and did a great deal to promote the rights of women in general, whether African American, Caucasian, or any other race!

May she rest in peace and be always commemorated for her great contributions! 🙂

Reflecting On The Meaning Of Abraham Lincoln’s Assassination 145 Years Later!

Today, April 14, marks the 145th Anniversary of the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln!

This was one of the most tragic moments in American history, and transformed the future of the nation, both in the South and nationally!

Assassination always affects the long term future of a nation, and certainly, the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy in 1968, and other political assassinations as well, had a deleterious effect on the future of the nation!

Political extremism is always evil, when it provokes marginal personalities to seek fame and notoriety by murdering a political leader, whether in America or anywhere else historically.

The political atmosphere today is so poisonous, with extremism and hot rhetoric so common, that it makes one concerned that it would not take much to convince some unbalanced individual to set out to assassinate our President, or our Speaker of the House, or some Governor, or any other political leader.

Nothing good can come out of this, and were this to happen, there would be a revulsion against those who had provoked it!

Why can’t we all realize how dangerous a situation we are in during the year 2010, and that we must pledge to lower the temperature of our debate, and recognize the common humanity of those who we might disagree with?

We do not want to mourn the loss of another leader, and this should be the message as we remember the sacrifice of Abraham Lincoln, who gave his life for his country to preserve the Union he took the oath to defend!

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: A New Dedication To Public Service And Humanity

On this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, commemorating the life and career of the great civil rights leader, America needs to rededicate itself to public service and humanity.

Such an example is the reaction of the American people and their government to the horrific tragedy in Haiti. We can be proud of the response of Americans to this unbelievable natural disaster, as shown by the outpouring of financial and practical support demonstrated in the past six days.

But also, President Obama and his administration have taken on this disaster with a full, long range commitment to restore a future to that island nation, which has had so much bad fortune in recent years, as well as in its entire history since independence in 1804. The President’s leadership is a true model of what we all have a right to expect from our government, and it sets a good standard for future Presidents as well.

Let the naysayers, such as Pat Robertson, Rush Limbaugh, and Ann Coulter show their true colors as they character assassinate themselves. We should not spend time worrying about such losers, as there is too much work to do, and fortunately, most of the American people are good, decent people who come to the aid of their fellow human beings in the spirit of the great Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, who we were blessed to have for too short a time, but who dedicated his life to bettering this nation!