No guns at political rallies
Progressive Secretary (http://ProgressiveSecretary.Org) suggested this letter to elected officials and I sent it to mine:
Armed attendees have been allowed at town hall meetings and public rallies where the President and other national officials were speaking. Paradoxically, Cindy Sheehan wore an anti-Bush t-shirt to a Bush rally and was arrested! Other protesters were herded off to remote protest areas.
Such tolerance is incomprehensible when one considers the very real dangers of assassination attempts and violent confrontations.
Please introduce legislation to outlaw the carrying of guns and other lethal weapons at non-military functions where not only the safety of the President, Vice-president, members of Congress, and related staff are at stake, but also that of all the ordinary citizens in attendance. The prohibition against the bearing of arms to such gatherings has nothing to do with the Second Amendment and everything to do with saving human lives.
To Steve Halle, Mechanic
To Javier Peralta, Teaching Assistant
To Randy Ruppert, Handyman
To Sharon Hanes, Manager
To Pete Seeger, Musician
To Luis Barrios, Subversive Priest
To all migrant workers, legal or not
and to the Astronaut
who went out today
to clean up the space debris
that was damaging the station.
You all work your daily life
from a labor accident.
Your dreams fly
beyond the space ships
while your feet hurry
to the stations and streets
where you work hard.
this country would be nothing
without your sacrifice
for our everyday bread.
Want to irritate a right-winger?
I attended Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' town hall meeting at a local high school in Tucson, Ariz. Over 2,000 people from both sides of the health care reform debate were in attendance. The auditorium was filled to capacity and the outdoor courtyard along with closed-circuit TV was also filled. During the evening, Giffords made two announcements. The first was announcing herself as a Blue-Dog Democrat, something I'm not too crazy about, as this means she's a Democrat on the ticket but conservative in belief. Sort of an oxymoron.
The second was that she was in favor of the public option, to the boos and hisses of the conservatives. During this meeting I came to one very basic conclusion, conservatives are rude and boisterous people when it comes to someone speaking in opposition to them. At one point, Giffords nearly ended the town hall meeting when the conservatives got too loud.
All in all, misinformed conservatives complained from their usual talking points that are fed to them. But more and more pro-public option proponents are showing up to these town hall meetings. Wanna irritate a conservative? Just say two words - public option!!!
What health care reform means for me
Another benefit of health insurance reform, if enacted, is that health insurance companies will be force to accept people, even if they have a pre-existing health problem. Even if a person already has cancer, kidney problems, ulcers, etc. The insurance companies will have to accept these cases and pay for their medical expenses.
Health care is a human right. Health care reform will force doctors, nurses, hospitals, and health insurance companies, like Blue Cross and Blue Shield and Rush, to abide by the Hippocratic Oath that doctors take.
Hopefully, health insurance will be extended to include the homeless, unemployed people, undocumented workers and their families, tourists from other countries, etc. Health care coverage must be universal in order for it to work. If an undocumented worker has the flu because he/she was denied the flu shot, the flu virus does not care about legal status in this country. It will spread to other people, regardless if they are American or any other nationality. The flu virus does not recognize legal status, documented worker, undocumented worker, criminal, law abiding citizen, child, adult, man, woman, etc.
In order for a vaccine to have the best result, everyone who wants to vaccinated must be vaccinated. (Some religious groups may be opposed to accepting medication and care of a physician because they believe in only faith healing and divine healing directly from God.) This is why the best medical care must be extended to everyone regardless of their status.
The members of Congress, their staff, the president and his staff, the justices of the Supreme Court, and many other federal employees have the best health care and the government pays for it. Everyone else in this country should also have government provided and paid for health insurance just like the members of Congress and the President who should be working together to extend the same health care benefits that they already enjoy to the rest of us.
What happened to Junior?
I really enjoyed reading Richard Bennett's piece "Will the Communists nationalize Junior's junkyard?" What a hoot! Hope you will publish more by this writer.
Editor's note: We are happy to report that more tales from Junior's Junkyard will be turning up in our printed edition and online soon.
Speaking for the common good
It seems to me that the Democratic and the Republican parties both promote the interests of trans-national corporations using the military as a lethal weapon. Both oppose ballot access to third parties. Consequently discussion of the common good does not occur and news has become entertainment and the public is inadequately informed.
I think that the Communist Party must convince the public that it speaks for the common good, especially the needs of the working people. This cannot be done effectively when the means of communication are dominated by corporate-owned media. There are many calls for reform but corporations will not reform. Government intervention is necessary.
As a start, coalitions should demand a large reduction in postal rates for publications concerned with public affairs that do not accept advertising or religious-based material. This could be one step in encouraging the type of discussion essential in a true democracy.