Thanks, PA, For Finally Realizing Partisan Gerrymandering Is Unconstitutional

Thanks, PA, For Finally Realizing Partisan Gerrymandering Is Unconstitutional

Hats off to PA for finally calling gerrymandering for what it is: unconstitutional.
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January 22, 2018. The day that Pennsylvania finally recognized that grossly partisan gerrymandering is unconstitutional.

Gerrymandering is defined as, "the dividing of a state, county, etc., into election districts so as to give one political party a majority in many districts while concentrating the voting strength of the other party into as few districts as possible."

In other words, gerrymandering allows areas to be split up, which can divide up states by class, race, gender and so forth.

PA has ordered a new map in time for the 2018 elections.

Finally, a state is realizing that dividing a state or area just to give a certain political party an advantage is unconstitutional.

It's not right to group certain people into a certain area where they will never have their voice heard. By packing, let's say, all people living in an area who make below a certain income, it makes it harder for them to be represented as a whole.

Depending on the way a place is districted, it could impact the way the people are represented. An area could be majority Democrat, but if districted and gerrymandered in certain ways then they could end up with Republican representation.

As a result, the legislators aren't fairly and accurately representing their people, they're just representing themselves.

PA is finally taking the proper steps towards accurately and fairly representing the people in their districts. It's not right to leave people virtually without representation just so that someone else can have power.

If you aren't running in an election that is fairly districted, you shouldn't be running at all.

It is unconstitutional to deny people of a fair election. Interfering by making sure you win the election before it even starts is completely wrong and violates our democracy at its very core.

Elections are supposed to be fair, but they are not fair in the slightest if we're controlling the election by drawing lines along party lines

Hats off to PA for finally calling gerrymandering for what it is: unconstitutional.

Cover Image Credit: 123rf

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The Trump Presidency Is Over

Say hello to President Mike Pence.

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Remember this date: August 21, 2018.

This was the day that two of President Donald Trump's most-important associates were convicted on eight counts each, and one directly implicated the president himself.

Paul Manafort was Trump's campaign chairman for a few months in 2016, but the charges brought against him don't necessarily implicate Trump. However, they are incredibly important considering was is one of the most influential people in the Trump campaign and picked Mike Pence to be the vice presidential candidate.

Manafort was convicted on five counts of tax fraud, two counts of bank fraud, and one count of failure to file a report of a foreign bank account. And it could have been even worse. The jury was only unanimous on eight counts while 10 counts were declared a mistrial.

Michael Cohen, Trump's personal lawyer, told a judge that Trump explicitly instructed him to break campaign-finance laws by paying two women not to publicly disclose the affairs they had with Trump. Those two women are believed to be Karen McDougal, a Playboy model, and Stormy Daniels, a pornstar. Trump had an affair with both while married to his current wife, Melania.

And then to no surprise, Fox News pundits spun this in the only way they know how. Sara Carter on Hannity said that the FBI and the Department of Justice are colluding as if it's some sort of deep-state conspiracy. Does someone want to tell her that the FBI is literally a part of the DOJ?

The Republican Party has for too long let Trump get away with criminal behavior, and it's long past time to, at the very least, remove Mr. Trump from office.

And then Trump should face the consequences for the crimes he has committed. Yes, Democrats have a role, too. But Republicans have control of both chambers of Congress, so they head every committee. They have the power to subpoena Trump's tax returns, which they have not. They have the power to subpoena key witnesses in their Russia investigations, which they have not.

For the better part of a year I have been asking myself what is the breaking point with Republicans and Trump. It does not seem like there is one, so for the time being we're stuck with a president who paid off two women he had an affair with in an attempt to influence a United States election.

Imagine for a second that any past president had done even a fraction of what Trump has.

Barack Obama got eviscerated for wearing a tan suit. If he had affairs with multiple women, then Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell would be preparing to burn him at the stake. If they won't, then Trump's enthusiastic would be more than happy to do so.

For too long we've been saying that Trump is heading down a road similar to Nixon, but it's evident now that we're way past that point. Donald Trump now has incriminating evidence against him to prove he's a criminal, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller is just getting started.

Will Trump soften the blow and resign in disgrace before impeachment like Nixon did? Knowing his fragile ego, there's honestly no telling what he'll do. But it's high time Trump leaves an office he never should have entered in the first place.

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Dear Jeff Bezos, Why Did You Wait So Long To Start Donating To Charities?

The richest man in the world finally decided to become charitable; I do not think his intentions are pure.

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Recently, Jerry News reported that the founder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie Bezos, donated $2 billion to charities in support of homelessness, and the construction of pre-schools in low-income neighborhoods.

This charitable effort made by the Bezos family has been named, "The Bezos Day One Fund", and the report was made by Jerry News on September 13, 2018.

For those of you unaware, Jeff Bezos has been the richest man in the world (and in modern history) for some time now. Yet, the Bezos Day One Fund is his first recorded substantial charity effort. As a matter of fact, in 2017 Bezos ranked last in charitable giving amongst billionaires.

In addition, to being the richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos is also responsible for the unsafe conditions within Amazon warehouses.

EHS Today reported that in September alone, two people were killed while working inside of an Amazon warehouse. Their names were Devan Shoemaker, 28, and Philip Terry, 59. Shoemaker lost his life when he was run over by a truck in a Pennsylvania warehouse; Terry lost his life when his head was smashed by a forklift in an Indiana warehouse.

Terry and Shoemaker are only two of the many individuals that have been killed and/or harmed inside of Amazon warehouses across America (not to mention, the rest of the world).

On top of these unsafe working conditions, Bezos is responsible for the consequence of providing his employees with low wages and unpaid medical leave.

In reference to wages: Zip recruiter reports that the average salary for 'title pickers' – individuals working in Amazon's warehouses – averages an annual salary of $25,000. This is not consistent among Amazon executives and officers, whose annual salaries range from $58,000-$147,000.

In reference to medical leave: Vickie Shannon Allen reported to heavy.com that she became homeless after being injured on the job at Amazon and denied a proper paid leave. I highly suggest taking a look for yourself (click here). Allen started a Go Fund Me page to raise enough money to get medical attention.

Vickie Allen's story is a lot to digest but what is even more alarming is that she is not the only one. Several Americans across the country have turned to homelessness while working for Amazon due to being injured at work and not being compensated for their time of recovery.

To cut Jeff Bezos a break for a minute and to make the situation somewhat worse, it is important to mention that Bezos is not the only one doing this to Americans; take the Walton-Walmart family, for instance. When was the last time you heard something good about the treatment of Walmart employees? Never? – Me neither.

When employers do not pay their employees enough to seek medical insurance and also do not provide their employees with medical insurance, employees generally seek help from the government. Hence, this is where our tax dollars are going – folks.

That said, in response to corporate absurdities, on September 5, 2018, Bernie Sanders made a fairly bold political move: he introduced the Senate bill, "Stop BEZOS". The "Stop BEZOS" Act would require companies such as Amazon and Walmart to pay the government for food stamps, public housing, Medical care, and other federal assistance received by their employees.

Quoted from Sanders' Instagram, "Yesterday I introduce a bill to give billionaires like Bezos and the Walton's a choice: pay workers a living wage, or pay the public assistance your low-wage workers rely on."

The Washington Post reports Bernie Sanders stating, "In other words, the taxpayers of this country would no longer be subsidizing the wealthiest people in this country who are paying their workers inadequate wages," Sanders said at a news conference announcing the bill. "Despite low unemployment, we end up having tens of millions of Americans working at wages that are just so low that they can't adequately take care of their families." (click here to read the full article)

All of the foregoing considered, it seems to me like Jeff Bezos' newly proposed charity effort is entirely meditated.

I mean, let's look at the timeline:

In 2017 Jeff Bezos became the world richest man – who also ranked last on the list of billionaires to give – who also was responsible for the homelessness of many of his injured employees.

Beginning early in 2018, Bernie Sanders began calling Bezos out until he finally introduced his "Stop BEZOS" Senate bill.

On September 13, 2018, Bezos introduced his charity efforts for homelessness and the construction of pre-schools in low-economic areas.

Why didn't he make his charity foundation earlier? He has been the richest man in the world for a year now, after all. And, why did he decide to focus his foundation on homelessness and socio-economic issues?

Maybe I am just a skeptic, but it seems pretty obvious to me that Bezos does not have honest, humble intentions. It seems like he is doing everything in his power- which includes donating billions of dollar –to preserve his image as well as Amazons.

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