Mueller's Early Christmas Gift

Mueller's Early Christmas Gift

Also, what is John Kelly talking about?

Robert Mueller's indictments were huge news.

Not only did we have Paul Manafort and his assistant indicted on twelve counts, but we also found out there has been a guilty plea. George Papadopoulos, a junior level foreign adviser to then candidate Trump, has pled guilty to lying to the FBI and has been working as a "proactive cooperator". Of course, the Trump administration is trying desperately to distance themselves, calling him a "low, level volunteer." Papadopoulos was in contact with a London-based professor with extensive ties to Russia, who said he had "dirt" on Clinton. Papadopoulos was then encouraged by another Trump staffer, Sam Clovis, to "make the trip" to Russia, "if it is feasible." This story is very exciting and fascinating, and It has the Trump White House scrambling and frustrated. There is another story, however that I think is being buried, and it is an important one. One that involves Chief of Staff John Kelly.

John Kelly was on Fox News the other night giving an interview to Laura Ingraham. When asked about a church in Virginia that had recently taken down a statue of Robert E. Lee, John Kelly praised Lee as "an honorable man who gave up his country to fight for his state." Kelly, who is a retired Marine Corps. General, also stated in the interview that the Civil War was caused by "the lack of ability to compromise." So, let's dissect the statement about Robert E. Lee first. Lee, along with the confederate army, decided to rebel against the United States. How is this honorable?

The second statement is what infuriates me the most. If we look back through history, the issue with slavery began with the founding of our country. While writing the constitution, our Founding fathers were split on the issue of slavery, as a compromise they came up with the infamous " slaves would count as three-fifths of a person for purposes of representation and taxation." It also, in not so many words, allowed Congress to ban the international slave trade, but not for 20 years. Most Northern states had already passed abolition laws by 1800, but the national debate intensified as groups debated over the expansion of the U.S. and if slavery would be allowed in new states. In 1820, we got the Missouri Compromise, which allowed Missouri to enter the union as a slave state but forbade slavery above the 36th parallel line, which set up the battle lines for the war to come. The Kansas-Nebraska act of 1854 mandated that any state, no matter geography, was permitted to decide the question of slavery by "popular sovereignty." Lincoln tried to compromise with the Southern states by a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow slave states to continue slavery but prohibit slavery in new states. “It reflects a very old set of ideas about the meaning of the Civil War,” David Blight, a historian at Yale University said. “Everybody was right, and nobody was wrong. Everybody was noble, everyone fought for their conscience, you don’t have to worry anymore about what they fought for.”

What infuriates me the most is that everyone thought John Kelly was going to be the “normal” one in the Trump administration. It turns out he is just as crazy as the rest of them. This is what they do. They take history and they distort it into a narrative that suits their agenda. Keep your eyes up and your ears open. Don’t get distracted from what they are doing. Resist.

Cover Image Credit: Wikipedia Commons

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Millennials Should Not Be Ignored

Our generation is speaking out, and people need to listen.

In today's society, millennials are often being ignored. We are characterized as "too young" or "too naive". But has anyone ever stopped and thought about how we as millennials may actually have more knowledge on today's issues?

Think about it: the majority of us get a quality education, most at least have a high school diploma or GED. Speaking from personal experience, I know that education is getting more and more complex as the years go on: My parents stopped being able to help me with math and science when I turned 10, and they both have college degrees. Our young minds are being exposed to so much more than other people have ever had the opportunity to access before.

We are also the generation who has been completely submerged in technology. Most of us don't remember a life without a computer, cell phone, or the internet. Generations before us haven't had the opportunity to completely live in a world full of technology and all it has to offer, and that gives us a huge advantage.

We understand how technology works and how useful it can be, as we don't know life any other way. For the first time, we are able to find out information about anything at literally any moment. We are able to connect with people all over the world and find out news the second it happens. Ignoring our knowledge of such a useful resource is not only stupid, but also damaging to everyone's futures.

Something I find completely ridiculous about generations before us is how ignorant they are of millennials, and the experience that we have with all of these current issues in our society.

So, let's talk about gun control.

Now everyone is entitled to their own opinions about gun control and what kinds of regulations we should have, but was I find baffling is how inconsiderate the government, the NRA, and older generations are being towards millennials. WE are the one's who have to watch our friends and peers be shot and killed. WE are the one's who have to practice 'shooter drills' in our schools now because of how normal shootings are becoming.

WE are the one's that are face to face with this reality of school shootings way too often. And what I don't understand is how the government and NRA have the audacity to say that we as students are uninformed, or naive, etc. We are the only one's who completely understand this issue. Honestly, I shouldn't even be including myself, because I have been fortunate enough to not have to experience such a tragedy within my lifetime. But I stand with those who have, as I am a millennial who's opinion is being ignored, and it needs to stop.

We need to be heard.

Our voices are stronger than ever before.

And we demand change.

But shifting off the topic of gun control, our opinion matters no matter what the issue. We are living in a period of activism, and millennials are the head of it. We want change, not just because activism is "trendy" or "current", but because we want to change the world that we are going to live in and that our children will grow up in.

We don't want to fear about school shootings, climate change, pollution, etc in our lifetimes, much less in our children's lifetimes. The generations before us have destroyed our world, and Millennials all over the world are trying to fix it. We are reshaping our world so that we will enjoy living in it.

So, To Whoever It May Concern,

Please do not ignore us. We are a lot more powerful than you think. I, and millennials around me, want to fix this world so that it doesn't crash and burn, but rather becomes better than it's ever been before. Don't ignore our opinions because we are younger, or don't quite have our degrees. We are more powerful than this world thinks.

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The 'Blue Wave:' Contender or Pretender?

Democrats and the media claim of a rising "blue wave" in response to the Trump Administration; is this a fallacy or something to watch out for?

On January 20, 2017, Donald Trump was named President of the United States, and parts of the country seemed to honestly go up in flames. Ever since, critics in the media have been rampant and insanely fastidious on what he does right and wrong. Overall, this coverage and the overall feeling about the President seem to be pretty negative. In reaction to this, political scientists and politicians have been monitoring and predicting a “blue wave.” So what exactly is blue wave? Is it even important or just a speculation?

In 2017, it became a real shock to many people that a Democratic Senator was elected to Congress—Doug Jones, whose opponent Roy Moore was accused of sexual assault with a minor and upon losing, took forever to officially concede. Now, in the eyes of the Senate, Alabama was no longer that reliably deep red state; it was split half-and-half.

In early 2018, about a week or so ago, it was considered a huge win for Democrat Linda Belcher in defeating opponent Rebecca Johnson in a special election in Bullitt County, Kentucky. Also, back home, there have recently been other elections recently in which Democrats did not win, but became narrowly close to winning. So what? So what: these counties in which Democrats have been making ground were runaways for President Trump in 2016.

In both of these states, Trump won by a large margin, as both states are considered safe red states. But now, there seems to be a little bit of uncertainty in each about political ground and where exactly the state stands. This is where the theory of a blue wave comes in. With lower polling numbers reflecting popularity of President Trump and other members in Congress of the Republican Party, the thought is that more and more moderates or people fed up with the Republican Party and President Trump are going to start voting for people of the Democratic Party. This theory sounds great in all, as do a lot of things on paper. But it is important to do further digging and examination of this, especially if it is going to be a pivoting line for Democrats to use in hopes of being voted in.

First of all, before even looking at specific cases of Alabama and Kentucky, think about the very theory behind such a phrase. Sure, political parties are pretty polarized as it is and seem to be doing nothing except continuing that process. But the very notion of a blue wave comes from people only needing to see the “-D” next to a name on a ballot. It requires no further education of a candidate and alienates the other side just because they are associated with that side. If you’re looking to really seek revenge on that side or you have the thought that every person in one party really is the same as the leading cronies of it, I suppose that makes sense. But a lot of times, members are different from their overall party and the representation at the top. Civic engagement is also incredibly important to keep up with; glancing at a name and their affiliation can lead to some serious problems. If all Republicans all thought and agreed on the same things, Independents would probably no longer be an exception but rather be seriously involved in the fight for office. Not to mention, if all Republicans are the same, then why are there so many inner-party conflicts between different branches of conservatism as well as with the President? Not all Democrats agree on the same things and preach the same things. Politicians are still people with different thoughts and ideas; alienating them to a simple phrase or one theory can prove to be really reckless.

Now, with personal examination towards the cases of Alabama and Kentucky: Let’s start with Alabama. When the news escaped that a potential sexual assailant was running for office, it became national news and caught the attention of millions of people. Even then, Moore still had a shot at winning the seat. When the final numbers came out, the amount of people who refused to vote Democrat but refused to vote for Moore was right around the magic number that would have given Moore the race. It was not the fury of citizens in Alabama from the Trump presidency or how fed up they were with Republicans that gave Dems this win—It was the fact that Doug Jones is not Roy Moore.

In Kentucky, it made news in other states as well that a Democrat won a district that Trump initially ran away with. It seems odd hearing that Democrats are being elected in good old Kentucky where the state has, historically, almost always leaned on the side of conservatism. However, Linda Belcher, winner of that district, previously had the seat and won it back. She was not a newcomer of which people did not already know her and did not have any groundbreaking methods or stances of getting into office.

Trust me: as a registered Democrat, I think it is wonderful that other Democrats are getting elected into office, especially since the majority represent values that I strongly agree with. However, I think that it may make more sense to say that this happens with incidence and time and place rather than with a sweeping movement. I may prove to be wrong in the future, but with these early results, it doesn’t appear like there is this huge anti-Trump movement in the country. Constituents are going to look at their personal representatives and decide based on their stances and what work they have done to help at home rather than if they are a certain party or not. Sure, some people do look for “-R” or other indicators of someone in a party and decide that way. However, for a good amount of people that do vote and care to get out the vote, many of them are at least willing to listen to what a candidate opposing their party has to say.

Cover Image Credit: Lorie Shaull, Wikimedia

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