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Progressive Revolt

Since the election of Donald Trump democrats have found their voice, stiffened their spines and launched an unprecedented progressive revolt. We saw the first signs of how large this movement was during the women’s march in Washington DC on the weekend of Trump’s inauguration. Close to a million people showed up and dwarfed the crowd size of Trump’s inauguration supporters (which drove Trump absolutely crazy). People all over the country decided that Trump and his divisive, misogynistic, racist, Islamophobic, anti-intellectual brand of fascism can not be allowed to destroy this country. So of course the next logical step is to figure out how to successfully oppose him.

Progressive Revolt

Trump did win the electoral vote and therefore won the presidency. But a huge majority of voters voted for Hillary Clinton instead of Trump. She got 3 million more votes than him (which also drives him crazy). This means we are the majority and there are ways to stop his legislative agenda from being enacted. The Tea Party who strongly opposed President Obama was able to grind the gears that produced new legislation and approves presidental appointees to a hault even when democrats held power in both houses. The Tea Party did this with a very small number of activist and with ideas that were very unpopular with a majority of Americans. If they were able to do all of that with small numbers and unpopular beliefs, imagine what progressives can do with huge numbers and mainstream ideas that makes sense.

Two weeks of Trump in office has already produced an unprecedented number of scandals and disasters.

  • Broke his promise to “drain the swamp” and instead filled his cabinet with billionaires, former Goldman Sachs executives, and lobbiest.
  • Lied about the size of his inauguration crowd & ordered the US Parks Dept to produce a photo that makes his crowd look larger than the protest, which of course they couldn’t do because no such photo exist.
  • Made a narcissistic speech in front of a memorial wall that recognized slain CIA operatives.
  • Made ignorant racist comments about civil rights hero John Lewis and belittled his contributions to America.
  • Needlessly combative phone conversations with US allies & spent a large part of the conversations telling them how big his inauguration crowd was and how “bigly” his campaign win over Hilary was.
  • Threatened to send troops into Mexico.
  • Ordered his press secretary to give an angry scolding lecture to the press because they would not report his lie about how many atteneded his inauguration.
  • Barred all government agencies from communicating with the press and the legislature.
  • Launched a disastrous military mission which lead to the deaths of one US soldier, an American 8 year old little girl, a crashed military helicopter and at least 14 other civilian deaths which were mostly women and children. Inspite of all this Trump and his press secretary called the mission a success.
  • Signed an executive order banning entry into the United States for 8 Muslim majority countries without consulting any agency outside of the White House which lead to chaos and confusion at airports and a large number of unconstitutional detainments.
  • Fired acting Attorney General for not defending Trump’s unconstitutional Muslim ban / travel ban.
  • Added political strategist (and white supremacist) Steve Bannon as a permanent member of the National Security Council while removing the director of national intelligence and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff as permanent members.Trump &white supremacist Steve Bannon
  • Decided to make American tax payers pay for an unnecessary wall on our southern border instead of keeping his campaign promise to make Mexico pay for it.
  • Used his speech at the national prayer breakfast to talk about how huge his ratings were on his former reality tv show The Apprentice compared to the new host Arnold Schwarzenegger’s ratings.
  • Had General Flynn give a press conference to let Iran know we are “putting them on notice”, but did not explain what that meant and did not change our military posture. The White House didn’t even warn our military service members in the region that the “on notice” speech was coming.
  • Yes Donald Trump is President, but we need to recognize that his power as president is directly related to the amount of voices who stay silent.  If the size of the opposition so far is an indicator of the size of the opposition movement ahead, Trump and his party’s hold on power is a lot weaker than any president we’ve seen in recent history.  So don’t sit at home and live in fear of what might come next. Get involved!  Check out the links below and post any information you may have about ways to get involved in the comment section.

    Indivisible Action Guide Video

    http://www.indivisibleguide.com

    www.whatdoidoabouttrump.com

Why I’m Voting For Hillary

Socially Urban Blog is proud to announce our support and endorsement of Hillary Rodham Clinton for President of the United States of America.

As the founder and editor in chief of Socially Urban, here’s why I trust Hillary and think she’s exactly the kind of president we need. I know some people think this is a bad word but I am not one of those people. The word I want to reclaim as something positive is “politician”. Hillary is an experienced politician who does the duties of that profession very well. A politician listens to the country and her supporters and then decides what direction would satisfy the people most. For example, during her primary with Bernie Sanders she wasn’t talkimg much about trade policy at the beginning. But as that issue became important she listened and adjusted her focus to accommodate this. Some may call it a flip flop, but I think it was a good politican doing what the job required. I think it made her even more suitable for the job as president. We want a president who hears the people. Who looks at polls, who constantly adjust to the will of the people. That is who Hillary is.

I always say activist would make horrible legislators because they aren’t swayed by public opinion and they don’t adjust when an adjustment is needed. They have an ideology that must be adhered to and their actions rationalized as the ends justifying the means. Those are great qualities to have if you’re leading a movement or if you have one specific cause or issue that you’re passionate about, but those are horrible qualities to have when you’re trying to run an entire country and make decisions that are in the best interest of our country as a whole.Socially Urban Blog The job of president is about consensus building, and compromise. Bernie Sanders is a great Senator, and he is passionate about income inequality. But his myopic view wouldn’t have made a good president (in my opinion).

We have all seen how Hillary operates over the past 30 years. We’ve seen her under pressure. We’ve seen her deal with foreign leaders. We’ve seen her listen and change with the times. She’s exactly who we need as president for the next 8 years. If you think she’s not progressive enough, make your case, organize, push her in that direction. That’s our job as citizens, as activist. I promise she will listen just like she listened in the primary. Politicans care about their approval numbers, they care about how they are covered in the media. That is our leverage.

If you sit home on election day because Bernie isn’t on the ballot, you are contributing to the apathy and cynicism that lost the house and Senate in 2010. If you’re a hardcore progressive who thinks Trump and Clinton are just alike, you really need to do some research about Obama’s 2 terms in office. If he didn’t win that first election gay marriage wouldn’t be legal in all 50 states, we wouldn’t have avoided a war with Iran by getting them to shutdown their nuclear program through diplomacy. The economy would have continued to spiral downward. We wouldn’t have the Affordable Care Act that gave 11 million people health insurance who didn’t have any before. The Libbey Ledbetter act for equal pay for women wouldn’t have been signed into law. Osama Bin Laden would still be alive planning new ways to attack our country. Don’t you think this is worth your vote? All of this happened because we elected Barack Obama instead of his republican opponet.

That’s why you need to support Hillary. If she doesn’t win I can guarantee her republican opponent will not do anything to reform our criminal justice system. He wouldn’t do a damn thing about police shooting unarmed black men. He even said he’d punish women for exercising their constitutional right to make decisions about their reproductive health. These two candidates are not the same. The two parties are not the same. Hillary Clinton is the only intelligent choice to make. The ideal candidate you have in your head doesn’t exist. Hillary is the only logical choice and I’m very happy to announce my support for her candidacy. As the editor and creator of Socially Urban Blog and as a private citizen I’m happily announcing my endorsement for President of the United States, Hillary Clinton.

Impeach For What

Impeach For What?

US Congressman Lou Barletta is the latest republican calling for the impeachment of twice elected President Barack Obama. During a conservative talk radio interview Barletta said “President Obama wouldn’t survive an impeachment vote in the House of Representatives”. Barletta went on to say “the President is ignoring the Constitution, ignoring the law, and ignoring the checks and balances outlined in the Constitution.” He also said he believes there are enough votes in the house to impeach the president.

Since the beginning of President Obama’s first term in office we’ve heard the word “impeachment” from a lot of republican lawmakers and conservative pundits (see video clip at the bottom of page). I’ve heard this so many times that I’ve become desensitized to the weight and gravitas the word once held. Talks of impeachment use to be reserved for matters of extreme seriousness. Now it’s just another word republicans use to stir-up their base and capitalize on the far right’s hate and disdain for our TWICE ELECTED president. The problem is, the people they are pandering to aren’t realizing how disingenuous Barletta and others like him are. The hate they have for our TWICE ELECTED President Barack Obama blinds their ability to see logic. I almost can’t blame them because the right wing media money machine bombards them daily with a ton of misinformation and outright lies. Congressman Barletta’s comments aren’t unique by any means. Almost every single republican in the House and Senate have threatened or entertained the idea of impeaching President Obama at one point, but none of them are serious… and I can prove it. Here’s a small sample of quotes from republicans about President Obama:

Ted Cruz – “The president’s lawlessness and disdain for our constitution puts all American’s in grave danger.”

Michelle Bachman – “President Obama abuses power, assaults the constitution, declared war on business and energy, spends recklessly, creates divisiveness, and rules by executive order.”

Senator John Cornyn – “Under President Obama, inconvenient or unpopular legal requirements have repeatedly been swept aside by executive fiat”

Senator Orrin Hatch – “The president has put our entire economy in jeopardy in order to serve his own political interests.”

Republicans For Impeachment

Grover Norquist – “Obama does everything by executive order. He’s made no effort to work with Congress”.

Represenative Kerry Bentivolio – “Who is going to stop Obama from everything that he’s doing against our constitution? Impeachment would be a dream come true if I could find the evidence.”

Senator Tom Coburn – “The administration is lawless and incompetent, and getting perilously close to impeachability.”

Congressman Farenthold – “What message do we send America if we impeach Obama and he gets away with what he’s impeached for and he is found innocent?”

Rep Bob Goodlatte & Jonathan Turley – Obama ignores the constitution. The danger is quite severe. The problem with what the president is doing is that he’s not simply posing a danger to the constitutional system. He’s becoming the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid.

Notice how no one ever gives details on any specific laws that they think the president has broken. All they have are vague accusations and meaningless rhetoric. Conservatives and conservative media should ask themselves, are there legitimate reasons beyond partisan politics to have a discussion about impeaching the president. But something as rational as that seems like too much to ask for with them. Instead they engage in debate asking HOW can they impeach the president.

Law makers in both houses have a responsibility to uphold the law and balance the power of the executive branch. If they think the president is breaking laws and not following the constitution they are duty bound to start the process of impeachment. If they honestly believe everything they are saying about president Obama then they can’t say I would vote to impeach but I know it won’t pass the senate. The oath of office they all took does not allow them to ignore acts of treason and high crimes committed by the president just because it may hurt them politically. That would be an abdication of duty and it would make them just as guilty as they claim the president to be. Republicans hold the majority in the house. If they felt their reasons were just, they’d bring the issue to the floor for a vote. But they’re not going to do that because they know they have NOTHING. fox pushes impeachmentThey know the president isn’t guilty of anything. When you see them on FOX or hear them on talk radio calling for impeachment, it’s all a performance. They get an opportunity to bash the president which makes the base happy. The more outrageous their rhetoric is, the more attention they get. They get invited for Hannity and Glen Beck interviews. They get their name in the paper. It’s a chance to raise their political profile. Even if they lose their office, they can make a lot of money within the conservative media money machine (books, radio show host, speaking engagements, lobbyist, think tank advisers, tv punditry, etc.). The incentives to engage in this type of behavior and practice this type of politics are huge. They are putting personal gain ahead of what is right for the country. The democrats aren’t perfect by any means but they have never been careless with words as powerful as impeachment. While George W Bush was president the democrats always showed respect for his title even when they may not have respected the man.  Yes, there were a few democrats who talked about impeaching President Bush, but it was a very small minority and they actually had good detailed reasons for that discussion.  Some dems wanted to press criminal charges against Bush and his administration, but Speaker Nancy Pelosi (the most powerful democrat at that time) got her fellow democrats to move on and focus on fixing the economy.  That’s what real leadership and integrity looks like.  More times than not democrats are the party who puts the countries interest above their own. The republicans in office right now have forgotten how to do that.

So, to all of the conservatives reading this blog post right now, I just gave you a sure-fire way to test your party’s elected officials truthfulness (especially in congress). If they are constantly screaming impeachment and saying President Obama is lawless, ignoring the constitution, and taking freedoms away, then they need to back it up with action. Tell them to take it to the floor of the house for a vote or shut the hell up.

 

 

Shutdown Blame Game

www.sociallyurban.com

As some of you may know, I love a good facebook debate about politics. I have a smart and very diverse group of friends in terms of race, ideology, and political affiliation. I didn’t know how rare that was until I read a Reuters poll a few months ago that revealed 40 percent of white Americans and 25 percent of non-white Americans are surrounded exclusively by friends of their own race.  If you’re one of those people whose social circle lacks diversity, I implore you to critically examine your life and the circumstances (conscious or subconscious) that led you to have such a limited view when choosing your friends.  I know you’re asking what the hell does any of this have to do with the government shutdown.  Well let me explain.  This morning I posted something on facebook about Senate majority leader Harry Reid’s cunning political prowess which is evident in how he’s dealing with the less cunning republicans lead by Ted Cruz (yes Ted Cruz, not John Boehner.  That’s not a typo).  My best friend Shante’s boyfriend Doug read my facebook post and left a comment.  We have differing views on who and what caused the government shutdown so of course a lively facebook debate ensued.  If you read the full debate you’ll see why it’s important to have friends who aren’t exactly like you because they may help you see something from a different perspective that you wouldn’t have otherwise.  I think I kinda sorta got Doug to admit I was right about who caused the shutdown but I did understand why he thought there was a problem with exemptions.  Anyway, here’s the debate (my comments are in red):

Me:  Harry Reid is giving them hell. He’s so soft spoken and unassuming. Many new Senate Republicans underestimate him. Big BIG mistake.  lol

Doug: They are all corrupt! The gov shutdown is because the senate refuses to remove a 72 percent subsidy for federal employees and exemption from health care for themselves. At the same time the GOP is making backdoor deals to exempt themselves also. They are all liars n covering there own self interest at the public’s expense.

Me:  We could argue the “they are all corrupt” trope a thousand times over but the real reason we’re at a shutdown is because House Republicans have tried to pass through legislative back channels an anti-Obamacare provision that they have failed to move either through House votes the 41 times they’ve attempted to repeal the ACA (Obamacare), through the Supreme Court, which upheld the law’s constitutionality, or through the election of 2012 when Mitt Romney advocated defunding Obamacare over and over and lost. It’s a law, and by attaching its defunding to a budget, the GOP is sidelining the legislative process. The 72 percent subsidy wasn’t even brought up until the day of the shutdown. Before that they were asking for a full repeal of the law. And when they saw that wasn’t going to happen they changed their demand to a 1 year delay plus a laundry list of other demands they failed to pass legislatively. I’m all for assigning blame equally when it’s due but this government shutdown is purely the fault of the far right tea party republicans.

Doug:  Partially correct! Yes they have tried to defund. Yes its law. We agree! Yet, against the law itself the administration has changed it 12 times giving perks to whoever speaks the loudest. The final bill sent by house only ask, why are all these groups being exempted if we are mandated. Those changes were added after the supreme court ruled. How can anyone defend a lawmaker imposing a law on us that does not apply to them. Its in the details. This law wasn’t even about healthcare. That was the bait to get the vote. Its the single largest shift in power to the executive branch in history. Its a bad bill but suits the need at the moment. It was lies! U cant keep ur doc( or wont be able to in three years) and its not cheap and affordable. Thats not republican or democrat. Thats just whats happening. Very few that can be trusted on either side. I appreciate your opinion though. You very informed which most people arent.

Me:  We switched from arguing the cause of the shutdown to the merits of the arguments of the reason the shutdown happened. So I’ll take that to mean you agree that the Senate is not the cause afterall . I understand your concerns with the ACA and I also understand why you think there are problems with exemptions. But I think it’s too soon to make leaps and assumptions. If the law is horrible and does everything opponents are predicting then it will die under it’s own weight. But those who are actively working to undermine it (tea party republicans) just because they do not like the man in the white house is wrong.

I want to say a big thank you to Doug for helping me post something new this week.  I wanted to post something about the shutdown and the Affordable Care Act but just hadn’t took the time to write it yet. So again, thanks Doug. 🙂

 

*All blog graphics are created by me and can be found at http://sociallyurban.com/graphics/

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