Looting and Destruction Is A Very Bad Choice…

By all accounts George Floyd of Minneapolis was not afforded the dignity that a human being deserves during a policing situation. His killing by a police officer was unjust and reprehensible.  

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To make matters worse, the young people who demonstrated through acts of destruction brought the wrong attention to their cause of ending police brutality to people of color. If the pillaging of neighborhoods and city centers is justified, then be prepared for what comes next…

– communities that lack food and housing security,

– mom and pop businesses that will struggle to rebuild,

– City resources limited by insufficient funds,

– further break down in trust.

If the problem is about police brutality to people of color, then why is destruction of community the answer? It is not! Without an identified leader to communicate a cohesive and principled message of action on the issue by using peaceful means and clarity of purpose then this destruction does not end, and unfortunately anger through fear remains the only message.

There are two sides…The police department is one side, and they are represented by the local city government and their union. But who is it that comprises the other side? This other side should not be known as a “leftist fringe” group because that is not who they really are. This other side must be comprised of concerned citizens who have respect from the community members to act on behalf of their best interests.

Let me suggest a six point plan to de-escalate the present condition and create a move toward progress:

1) Select 65 Minneapolis citizens comprised of five members from each of the thirteen wards…These citizens would not be from the active leadership of government. These citizens along with a respected and trained facilitator would convene a community meeting with the Mayor and City Councilors to address police brutality concerns.

2) The agenda for this meeting would be to identify 3 measurable goals toward solving police brutality concerns and to select a committee of no more than 13 volunteers from the original 65 citizens (one person from each ward).

3) This citizen committee should identify their mission and put forward a vision.

4) A trained facilitator would work with the committee and the City Council to identify the measures of the three goals which the city would then be charged to implement.

5) Progress is assessed quarterly, and new goals are identified annually.

6) The model is repeated in every U.S. community that wants to see changes made to policing (or any other city activity) in good faith.

I guarantee that trust would be strengthened in all aspects of community life. This is a similar model that I have used within my community. It has the added benefits of teaching improved communication skills and training new community members for future leadership roles.

 

The Shrew View: Home of the Brave

Fear is being allowed to fester in America…The type of fear that can only be fostered by the media and improved upon by the liberal academics because they are the prime manipulators of emotion.  Is this fear linked to the polarizing politics of today?  Perhaps it is simply the natural human instinct of preserving life at all cost?  Either way, it’s definitely worth taking a closer look as only a Shrew would…

When President Roosevelt said in 1933 that ‘The only thing to fear is fear itself…’, he was not far from the mark.  During that time we were at the peak of the Great Depression.  He went on saying, ‘…fear itself – nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance…’   Fear as an emotion is ephemeral unless a person is consumed by it nonstop.

In my booklet, Archetypes of the Human Spirit, I picture a large fish with many sharp teeth as a symbol of the fear that consumes all efforts to improve not unlike the Bible story of Jonah and the whale.

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This all consuming fear is that which comes when you are not sure that your choices are leading you in the best direction.  Fortunately we have the ability to look back on past choices to determine the best path forward…This is why learning factual history is so important!  In your own life your history is all of those past choices, and the outcome of those choices are what you have to learn by.  Your anxiety ridden, uncomfortable present or future is an illusion of fear until you reconcile those past choices with what you learned after making them…And if you succeed in applying this model, you gain wisdom.

In America there is a certain effort underway to rewrite our history.  This is an unfortunate circumstance because the “new” history focuses on victimhood and is consuming humanity’s efforts to improve.  Learning everything we can about why we had slavery, The Trail of Tears, women’s suffrage, Jim Crow and gay rights in our “free” society is good, but only if we are brave enough to see the true context as whole and proper.  It is only then that we can make progress as a nation that values Liberty for all rather than equality as an outcome for all.

 

 

Shrewd Awakenings…Truth or Consequences

Enough time has gone by now…

Yes my friends, it was a game show.  You, the viewing audience have been allowed to witness a game for which truth still leaves many questions as actual facts are manipulated for a ridiculously consequential outcome.

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Before “Beulah the Buzzer” sounded (in this case Beulah was the vote to acquit President Trump on two articles of impeachment) each contestant (in this case 100 Senators) had to answer to the viewers (in this case the American people) three questions.  What were the three questions?

Here is my take:

1) Did the House enter into legitimate impeachment inquiry proceedings?

2) What did the “High Misdemeanor” accomplish?

3) Can a Senator keep their seat if he or she didn’t impeach President Trump?

Here are my answers:

1) There was no whole House vote to enter into the impeachment inquiry, but just because there is a House majority of Democrats, the majority should be careful to not enter into a partisan process as they did.  To force a one sided Democratically called witness review which was done in partial secrecy was wrong, and to leak some of this secret testimony to the press for speculative and sensationalist review was compromising to the process.  Even though beginning the inquiry was done legitimately, its implementation was ultimately problematic to their case.

2) The “High Misdemeanor” of saying Joe Biden’s name in relation to a corrupt Ukrainian Company during a head of state phone call accomplished the Democrat’s mission to find a ruse for the impeachment of President Trump.

From the un-redacted transcript of President Trump’s phone conversation with Ukrainian President Zelensky, President Trump says, “…There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great.  Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it…It sounds horrible to me.”  President Trump never said, “…so if you could get the Attorney General to investigate Biden’s involvement with the corrupt company (AKA Burisma Holdings), this would be a great help to my campaign.”  But that is exactly what the Democrats would want you to believe.  Instead, President Trump who is the chief law enforcement officer of the USA wants to know on behalf of a lot of people (AKA taxpayers) if Burisma would ever be investigated for corruption.  Interestingly, Biden’s action of holding back United States taxpayer funds to the Ukraine government in 2014 for six hours while he forced the firing of a Ukrainian investigator who was looking into Burisma corruption does appear to be a quid pro quo by Biden and was never brought up as being a wrong action even though he is on camera bragging about it in 2018.

Also from the transcript, “…Since we have won the absolute majority in our Parliament, the next prosecutor general will be 100% my person, my candidate, who will be approved by the Parliament in September.  He or she will look into the situation, specifically to the company that you mentioned in this issue…”  President Zelensky said that his intention was to investigate the company known as Burisma Holdings, not a person and specifically not the aforementioned Biden.

And, as far as United States funds being held back, has anyone considered that President Trump could have been waiting for the new prosecutor general to be actually approved by the Parliament into the position first?  Ukraine’s government and the new President Zelensky should have their actions vetted carefully before the United States has trust in their future good intentions.  With his own distrust of US federal employees working within and among his executive branch, President Trump likely wanted to do this inquiry himself, an action which is not illegal nor unprecedented.

3) Each Senator has their seat for six years.  Any Senator who has three or more years left for their term and who voted to impeach knows it will have almost zero effect on their next campaign.  Any Senator who has less than three years left for their term and who voted to acquit had to think twice about this vote because of the message it sends to their constituents, essentially a message of support for President Trump.  Hopefully their individual votes were done based upon constitutional principles instead of party loyalty…You decide.

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But here is the consequence, our Constitution hangs in the balance.  From the start, the lack of a whole House vote to investigate an allegation from the very beginning brought on a partisan process.  Even the majority vote to acquit in the Senate adds credence to the partisan misbehavior by the House.  What we had was an abuse of power on behalf of the House of Representatives.  Oh well…for now Beulah says, “Case dismissed!!”

Shrew View…Love Binds People of Good Will

Love binds people of goodwill…A repost from a year ago.

Today is a day to reflect on the message of Martin Luther King, JR.  His is a message of love and freedom; a freedom guaranteed by God and reflected in the U.S. Constitution:

“…in order to form a more perfect Union…secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our posterity…”

In the early 1960’s there was no better person to secure these Blessings for people of color.  Our lawmakers failed to be responsible leaders entrusted to uphold the Constitution.  One might suggest that this failed responsibility dates all the way back to our founding as a nation, but I think that would be taking the easy route, condemning every step toward the progress of achieving a message of freedom.

“Humans have been literally torturing each other for centuries as they grope toward this Chalis of fulfillment.”     – The Shrew

Our U.S. Constitution is the tool enabling wholeness in our country.  No other country puts the responsibility of freedom in the hands of each individual.  It is law makers who abuse this insight by putting limits on ideas instead of on their lawmaking capabilities.  Martin Luther King, JR knew instinctively that the idea of a black person sitting where a sign indicated that they were not allowed by law to sit would challenge the lawmaker’s unconstitutional limitations on God’s creation.  King gave power back to the people – all people, because injustice is never visible in God’s kingdom which is where the human soul finds strength to conquer the perceived injustice in the world of mankind.

Love binds people of goodwill.  In a nation of diverse ideas, those people of goodwill come together to solve the issues at hand.  There is no us vs. them.  There is only…

“We the People…”

Shrewd Awakenings…Our Great Awakening

It is now the year 2020 and it’s about time that we see the political climate around us with 20/20 vision.

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Photo by Victor Freitas on Pexels.com

How many of us get our news from social media snippets and/or “friendly” network broadcasters?  Are they and their sources reliable?  Are the fact checkers that give us the Pinocchio’s really digging deep enough in their fact checking?  Are we being presented the whole story?  Unless we are willing to give up our day jobs (or even get off the couch) and become an investigative reporter, we probably rarely if ever do the reading and research necessary to have a truly informed opinion.

In the mean time the majority of us are typically left to our biases.  Having a bias is not a bad thing…It is an absolutely human thing.  It gives you a basis from which to start your exploration of a topic and to be tested when faced with an opposing view; in other words, the ability to have an open mind from which to use to reason.

If you hold strongly onto your bias, then you have the inability to find justice.  Potential jurors are scrutinized for bias before they are allowed to serve on a jury.  This is a very important part of a society based on law and justice.

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Social justice is justice in terms of the distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges within a society.  Can a liberty minded society be “cleansed” of biases?  Of course not!  Liberty is the state of being free within society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s way of life, behavior, or political views (Oxford Dictionary).  The opposite of this is Fascism.  Social justice must impose Fascism in order to control the distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges.  In the USA each person would necessarily need to give up their liberty in order for the implementation of  a true social justice agenda.  By what biased authority would we want this agenda implemented?  The answer to this question leads to our great awakening…

Liberty entails the responsible use of freedom under the rule of law without depriving anyone else of their freedom.  This sounds like a just society to me 🙂

We are already USA Strong!

Your property and care of it is your wealth, your informed curiosity leads to your opportunity, and your positive relationships reinforce many of your privileges.  These are guaranteed to you in the U.S. Constitution.

Shrew View…Masculinity Under Attack

Remember, traits and behaviors are not indications of gender, they are expressions of human nature…

A few months ago I received an email from someone representing MPR (Maine Public Radio).  They were taking a survey that asked three questions.  I did not respond to the survey thinking that possibly something nefarious was afoot, but I did attempt to answer the questions anyway for myself because I found them very good.  Here are the questions with my answers; I assumed that these questions related to U.S.A trends of the topic:

1) What constitutes masculinity?

Anyone can have masculine traits.  Men display these traits when they use their integrity and dignity to protect their family and country, earn an income to secure their self and family, and organize within their community to create economies of scale that contribute to the balance of need.  A unique masculine trait is sarcasm…this can be applied to situations for emotional relief toward intense scrutiny.  Aggressive behavior is typically a way to attract attention when all else fails, however when aggressiveness is applied to friendly competition such as in sports it can be a positive outlet.

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Photo by Josh Hild on Pexels.com

2) Who are public figures who embody masculinity?

– President Trump

– President Obama

– Ashton Kutcher

– Martin Luther King JR.

– Mohamed Ali

3) Is Masculinity under attack? Explain.

YES!

No one should have to compromise their authentic self to fit in with what is popular.  This does not condone specific behaviors that go against laws or other’s belief systems.  A society that attempts to ignore how masculinity benefits the balance of human nature is doomed to have this energy of “order” and “aggressiveness” be exerted in ways that are unleashed negatively on that society.

A Shrew will never humiliate or degrade male energy because to do so would  disregard the importance of this balance with female energy.  Remember, traits and behaviors are not indications of gender, they are expressions of human nature…This is why we are a nation of laws and not a dictatorship.

SHREW U: Worshiping at the Alter of Perfectibility

To plan for worldly perfection is a web of deceit and the spider who sets this trap believes himself to be like a god.

A web of deceit has been inadvertently spun since our founding which I will date as June 21,1788 when our Constitution was ratified. At that time there were 13 states. Only nine states needed to be on board for ratification…Ammendments to the document continued for several years after the ratification, for instance the Bill of Rights was not ratified until December, 1791.

During ratification the first political parties formed, the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists.  Anti-Federalists saw the constitution as a potential threat to personal liberties and opposed its ratification wanting only each state to have sole power.  However, there were more Federalists than Anti-Federalists so the Constitution was ultimately ratified.  This is not to say that the Anti-Federalists didn’t get some of what they wanted…The Constitution did put in place checks and balances to help prevent central government corruption and tyrannical rule as well as incorporate explicit protections for individual rights.

In today’s polarized political climate we must all remember that perception is only part of the path to truth.  Facts still remain. – The Shrew

The Anti-Federalists soon became the Democratic-Republican Party.  Founding Fathers such as Patrick Henry, Samuel Adams and Thomas Jefferson were among them.  In the early 1800’s this party split into the Republican Party and the Democratic Party (Federalists such as George Washington, John Adams and Alexander Hamilton ultimately became members of the Democratic Party).  Essentially Republicans at this time wanted to reserve more power to state governments unlike the Federalists (later the Democrats) who dominated national government early in our founding and passed laws which taxed land owners to pay for war preparations against the French, increased residency requirements for U.S. Citizenship, deported all male citizens of enemy nations, and limited free speech rights.  By 1830 the Federalists had been completely reformed into the Democratic Party which supported slavery and opposed civil rights reforms.  You can see the trend early on that neither party was perfect with their understanding of Liberty. 

In the mid 1900’s the Democratic Party underwent a dramatic ideological realignment by supporting organized labor, civil rights of minorities and progressive reform.  During this time there were a number of other political parties with their own particular ideologies that came and went, many of which had elected representation in Congress, but they would not prove the test of time.  Today’s Democratic and Republican Parties bear almost no relationship to their original counterparts.

Through the decades of party representation in the presidential and congressional roles it seems that any time the dominant party was too aggressive with its messaging it left an opening for the opposing party to take control.  This “duel” made it more difficult for progressive ideas to cement, but laws and programs which began under the New Deal and civil rights reforms were enacted when both parties were more amenable.


When I compare the ins and outs, ups and downs of our federal system to our state and local governance systems the picture is the same.  Any time an extreme example of controlling power is displayed, another election happens to check this power and bring a modicum of balance to controlling forces.  Governing systems don’t just create themselves, it is people working together who bring them to being.  Ours is the only system which allows for ideas to be tested, thrown out and reinvented.  This is what a free republic does.  And if the people of this republic are free to also imagine and be inspired by the invisible hand of God at work in their personal lives, then the ups and downs of our system give emotional maturity for the individual to persevere when their wants are not able to balance their needs.  We do ourselves a great disservice when we believe that whole populations and desired outcomes can be forcibly perfected.  These are the ways of tyrants.

Our Earth and the cosmos are ever changing, and as we know, people are limited when they try to improve upon these changes.  To plan for worldly perfection is a web of deceit and the spider who sets this trap believes himself to be like a god.  We must not worship at the alter of perfectibility lest we divert our inherent worth to a false  master.