Posts Tagged ‘farmerville’

THIS WILL APPEAR IN THE FARMERVILLE GAZETTE, FARMERVILLE LOUISIANA, THE WEEK OF 4/7/2019.
America should be in an uproar when it comes to the security of the citizens of our great nation. The United States is a nation of laws and these laws are enacted to protect its’ populace. We have laws that limit migration. The first law was enacted in 1917 and cleared a path for a far more comprehensive and restrictive law in 1924. One of the main purposes of the law was to insure that America maintained its’ consistency and identity. This remained in effect until further laws were passed in 1952.
When I lived in Arabia we would periodically visit other countries. Every time that we would enter another country we had to obtain permission and we had to present a United States passport to prove that we were American citizens in good standing with our country. The country we visited would then stamp a visa into the passport that allowed us entry, but with the understanding that this was not to allow a permanent stay within the country. It was orderly and fell within the laws of the country we were visiting. This process was for people wishing to visit a country. For individuals wishing to immigrate, the process is far more intense but the method remains organized, civil and under control. What we are facing on the Southern border today is far from organized, civil and under control.
Years ago the majority of people seeking to illegally enter the United States were males that were looking for work and who would send money back to their families in Mexico and Central America. Today there is a large number of women and children entering the United States through unsecured border crossings. This increase has led to a part of what we have identified as a true crisis. How do we document these individuals; how do we house them and how do we provide needed medical care. We don’t just snap our fingers and we have facilities along a thousand-mile border. Also, the sheer magnitude of the quantity of individuals without children that are illegally entering America has grown to epic proportions. Facilities are not available to hold all these men and women. When we get the individuals into custody there is the daunting task of determining if they are true asylum seekers, individuals fleeing for fear of their lives; if they had criminal records in the country they came from; if they are re-entering America and had been deported; and countless other questions that must be answered. Of course the most horrendous questions that must be answered pertains to the intent for bringing the small girls and boys to America. Is it to give them a better home or to sell them on the sex trafficking trade in America.
I don’t know what constitutes a crisis in Washington, but to me we have a crisis and politicians are playing games with the security and freedom of our nation. The department of Homeland Security needs to be commended for their effort to secure the border but of all those captured, how many make it through the porous border.
My mother was from a small town in the mountains of Nevada; Gardnerville. I read of two elderly women killed and robbed on two different nights. Unheard of in the quiet town. A week later an eighty-year-old husband and wife were murdered in Reno. The murderer of all the crimes was captured a few days later. He was an illegal immigrant from Central America. Though the immigrants that perform violent acts is extremely small, it still happens and highlights the need to better control the border and reform our laws.
We must fix the border, we must reform our immigration laws and we must support the countries where the people are coming from so that America is not such a powerful magnet.

Advertisements

THIS WILL APPEAR IN THE FARMERVILLE, GAZETTE, FARMERVILLE LOUISIANA, THE WEEK OF 4/1/2019.
America is at a dilemma with itself. Political ideology differences and party aggression has led to unclear confused issues that are coupled with blurred facts. One issue that causes me to sit back from the television with shock and surprise is the southern border problem. Shock because what is happening on the border; everything from social despair to drug trafficking to selling women and children into the dark and slimy world of sex trafficking to the shear massive number of illegal immigrants flooding into our country. Surprise because individuals within our own country deny that we have a problem. This denial is to further their own political party’s agenda while discrediting their rival party and doing so at the detriment of our great nation.
What has happened with this border issue is far more complex than we are presented on the news networks. There are basically two issues; border defense and immigration reform. The two are different but there is a symbiotic relationship.
We must have a secure border that stops illegal entry to America from anyone that does not have legal permission to enter the United States. There is a law, just as with every other country in the world, that states that a person must have permission to enter the host country. If we have to build barriers, provide high technology for surveillance and obtain more law enforcement manpower; then this is the cost for living in the most progressive and free country in the world. We must enforce our laws.
Laws of the United States are developed by the United States Congress. These laws are then enforced by the executive branch of government, the President. We need immigration reform. We need laws on the books that allow access to the United States for the purpose of providing a service for the country and in a method that is expeditious, fair but manageable. This could be agricultural support, manufacturing support, software development or whatever is required to support our great nation. The influx of these guest workers must be controlled and managed and must be at the pleasure of the country. It is also important that America work closely with the governments of the countries that immigrants are fleeing and better the living conditions within those countries. Congress must also fund these programs and we do not need to add additional taxes to the working man and woman to address the border issue. It is unfortunate that we have to look inward for a financial solution but we have no other means to fund this except to cut from our own internal programs. Budgeting is the solution and not more taxes.
While we wait for better immigration laws and improved conditions within our Central American countries, we must secure our Southern Border. Last week 4,000 illegal aliens were arrested and taken into custody. That is 4,000 arrests along the border where 1,000 arrests is a high number. The message being sent is that America is in turmoil and Congress is in disagreement with the President and it is much easier to get into and remain in America. American is flourishing, America is great and the border is fragile. Come up and take advantage of the chaos.
If it were me, I would make the trip. I would want what is best for my family and the perceived message from Washington is to come to America and we will figure all this out when you get here. This message is not helping and the petty fight to discredit the president and his party is jeopardizing our national interest.
Next week we will take a look at the consequences of a porous border.

THIS WILL APPEAR IN THE FARMERVILLE GAZETTE, FARMERVILLE, LOUISIANA THE WEEK OF 3/10/2019
The United States was recently on the verge of war with a despicable and harsh regime in Southeast Asia, North Korea. America refused to allow any further expansion of a nuclear weapons program that, if allowed to continue to develop and grow, threatened all of mankind. Harsh sanctions by the United States, its’ allies and other countries associated with Korea lead to North Korea sitting down at the negotiating table with the United States. These negotiations are nothing new and have taken place under different American administrations for decades.
A major summit was held in Hanoi two weeks ago with the purpose of signing an agreement to disarm North Korea’s nuclear arms program and at the same time lifting the economic sanctions levied on North Korea. The location of the meeting was quite ironic. America, myself included, did everything possible to blast North Viet Nam off the face of the earth. Fifty years later North Viet Nam is one of the fastest growing economies in the world. An economic move from being a total communist government and allowing Capitalism to hatch and grow coupled with normalized relationships with the United States and the West has lead to a vibrant economy in the jungles of Southeast Asia. Holding the summit in Hanoi should have been inspirational to the North Korean regime as Viet Nam’s successes discloses what Korea could accomplish if it would throw off the yoke of Communism and Socialism, embrace a more open country and dispose of their weapons of mass destruction.
Negotiations with North Korea have been ongoing with the same outcome. America goes in with a list of grievances and identifies what it requires to ease a tense situation. North Korea states they will meet the agreements but it requires some type of economic aid. America agrees, shouts out a high five and provides the aid. Korea backs out of its’ commitment, nothing changes other than North Korea has reaped a short-term economic benefit and America receives nothing.
This has been the normal tactic for decades; make promises, obtain economic benefit, forget the promise and laugh at America and the West. America quietly lets it pass and the agreement breakdown is un-noticed by the American public. In 1968, during the Lyndon Johnson presidential term, the USS Pueblo, an American spy ship operating in International waters, was attacked and captured by North Korea. America had sent out attack aircraft from Japan only to call them back claiming darkness was closing in. Following coercing by North Korea, the skipper publicly admitted to spying and America then paid a ransom to have the men released. The ship is still in Korea. In 1985 during the Regan administration, North Korea agreed to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and in 1991 the Bush administration announced America would remove nuclear weapons from South Korea. South Korea announced it would not produce nuclear weapons. Then in 1992 North Korea and South Korea signed an agreement to not test, posses or deploy nuclear weapons. One year later, 1993, North Korea said it will withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation agreement but later decided against it following “discussion” with America. It was estimated that North Korea then had enough Plutonium to make two bombs. In 1994 under the Clinton administration North Korea agreed to stop building reactors to enrich uranium. In 2002, after years of negotiations, talks broke down and North Korea exited the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Agreement. 2006 saw North Korea test its’ first nuclear bomb. The Obama administration failed to get North Korea to the negotiating table despite increased sanctions. Two weeks ago President Trump met with the leader of North Korea and expected to sign a treaty. Korea wanted all sanctions lifted first. Trump walked out of the negotiations and gave no concession to North Korea. America screamed another failure.
This was, in fact, a win for America. For the first time America gave no concessions to obtain a hollow victory. For the first time America held its’ ground against North Korea. The talks are far from over and we can ultimately expect a strong bi-lateral agreement that will insure a far safer world.

THIS WILL APPEAR IN THE FARMERVILLE GAZETTE THE WEEK OF 12/29/2018
George H.W. Bush has been laid to rest. The symbolic train ride carrying the body of the former president from Houston to College Station has been completed. A grateful nation is beginning to forget this iconic figure that had quietly made great changes to a turbulent world; a world that didn’t fully understand or appreciate what he had accomplished.
Former President Bush had a leadership style that worked well with international negotiations and helped to mold America in respect to early China negotiations and the fall of the Soviet Union. He wasn’t boastful nor did he place himself in the forefront of celebration when a major goal had been accomplished. This is an admirable trait for international negotiations but does not bode well for a politician that must be in front of the electorate and viewed as being the master above all else.
On August 2, 1990, Saddam Hussein sent his army across the Kuwaiti border, captured and occupied this small peaceful country. At risk was control of a major part of the worlds developed oil and a threat to an ultimate invasion of Saudi Arabia. This would lead to Saddam Hussein becoming one of the most powerful men in the world with a potential threat to the economy of the entire world. Bush knew this and he had to neutralize this threat.
Individual power is extremely important in the Mid-East culture. When negotiating in the Mid-East it is important to allow your adversary a back door to exit. This, in essence, allows the person failing in the negotiation to exit with dignity. If Saddam Hussein was allowed an easy path out of Kuwait it would only be a matter of time and he would be back but with a better understanding of what he needed to do to remain in Kuwait plus a possible take-over of the vast Saudi oil fields. Had he been allowed to exit unscathed, the Mid-East view of Hussein’s power would have been expanded as he had confronted the greatest power in the world and had not been bloodied; thus he had won. Bush understood this as no other president. Hussein was left with no back door. I watched for five months as the coalition forces arrived in Saudi Arabia. I watched as negotiations were ongoing and noticed that Hussein was never left with a back door to be able to exit the talks with any form of dignity. It was apparent that Bush and his staunch allies wanted Hussein to have his army drastically damaged and for Hussein to lose face in the world.
Bush would accomplish this mission but there was so much that had to be done to ensure that a most unlikely coalition remained together. Troops from such diverse countries as Senegal and Syria, Egypt and Great Britain fought side by side. To make matters worse, Hussein fired missiles at Israel. For the first time since its’ existence, Israel did not seek revenge. The coalition refused to allow Israel to attack. Had this attack taken place the coalition would have fractured as the Arab members of the force would not fought against a country that was being attacked by Israel. The entire war was masterful brinksmanship.
Bushes popularity in America was short lived. With an election looming, his own party hurt him. Pat Buchanan wanted the Republican nomination and amid cries of entitlement and referring to Bush as King George plus Bushes famous quote, “Watch my lips, no more taxes”, a great leader was weakened and left the door open for Bill Clinton to become president.
Following the election and Bushes loss the typical Saudi was shocked. I remember talking with a Saudi Arab at the local gas station. He found it unbelievable that a man of so much power would not have been re-elected by the Americans to rule our great nation.

This was published in the Farmerville Gazette, Farmerville, Louisiana on April 11 2018, two days before the coalition strike against Syria.
If I had an opportunity to bet I would wager that Russia’s new demagogue is a chess player. Furthermore, the Mid-East is a big chess board and the contestant playing Putin is the Unites States while the rest of the world is the audience; sitting there watching but with no desire to play.
Five years ago I began writing about how we had to do something to support the rebels with their attempt to overthrow the brutal Assad family regime in Syria. We did little or nothing and instead of a few hundred civilians dying, the numbers of innocent men, women and children has risen to hundreds of thousands of casualties.
The refugee explosion is costing the world billions of dollars in aid and relief while American Mid-East ally Jordan is suffering from the load of hundreds of thousands of refugees seeking a safe place to stay. At the same time we saw despicable ISIS be birthed, grow into a monster and finally becoming old and dying. As the refugee crisis became critical, Europe opened its doors and many thousands of Syrians sought asylum. While the vast majority are in desperate need, a small segment causing trouble in their host European countries and the fear of terrorist attacks are continually with our friends in Europe.
In the middle of this chaos Putin enters the Mid-East scene and begins his chess match. No one saw him come and he became the savior to Syria. The vacuum in Syria allowed the Russian troops and aircraft to enter the country and aid the Assad regime. Syria and the Mid-East had been void of Russian influence since the end of the 1980s. They are now back and they outsmarted America and its’ foreign policy. To make matters worse, two of our best allies in the Mid-East, Turkey and the Kurds living in Syria, are fighting each other.
Before Russia physically entered Syria, the Syrians were hinting to use nerve gas. Then President Obama placed a line in the sand and said Syria had best not use any nerve gas. Syria did and America looked on and did nothing. Syria had called our bluff.
A year ago with Russia troops in Syria, Syria again used nerve gas on innocent citizens. The response was quick from President Trump and America as Tomahawk Cruise missiles rained down on Syrian air bases. This move surprised everyone, including Russia. A major move for America.
Since then there have small moves as pawns are called into play and knights go out to do battle but there has been no major game moves; until last week. A surprise announcement from America disclosed that the United States may pull all forces out of Syria in September and thus leave the game. We had now done just what the Obama administration had be blamed of doing in other confrontations; telegraphing an exit date. Then shortly after this the Syrians have once again used nerve gas on innocent civilians. Syria has thumbed its nose at the United States while pictures of dead children are broadcast around the world.
The silence from the American government is deafening. Has Russia and its; puppet Syria made a move that has left America trying to figure out its’ next move or is the response being determined at this time. Several things are certain.
1. If America pulls out of Syria and leaves it to Assad and Putin’s Russia, a breeding ground for anti-American and anti-Democratic countries will be constructed and Iranian influence will expand. Syria will become a huge petri dish growing hate and disease as it plans the invasion and destruction of its’ neighbor, Israel while strategic plans for the fall of Europe are devised.
2. Russia denies any knowledge of any actions in Syria. Russia is in sync with everything happening in Syria and has advanced knowledge of decisions to use nerve gas. As a preemptive move prior to retaliation by America and the West, Syria claims that Israel dropped the gas to make it look like Syria dropped the bombs.
3. America has a new National Security Advisor in John Bolton. Officially taking office last Monday, he will not mince words and will have a hardline plan to answer the use of nerve gas by Syria.

 

Last week America experienced, once again, a horrific act of violence perpetrated on innocent youth of our nation. Broward County, past famous for the strong impact in presidential elections, is now at the center of this horrific act of childhood genocide. There have been several factors that were in place that allowed this violence to take place.
Immediately a scream for gun control was launched by the Democrats. This is the key note address from the liberals and the feeling is that if we have gun control we have won the war and the American world becomes a pure sweet land where there is no more violence and we all live in this utopic home where violence disappears.
If a law was enacted tomorrow banning all guns in the United States and thus guns sales were completely stopped, gun manufactures closed their doors and all guns in all gun shops are confiscated and melted down there would still be no effect on the use of guns in violent crimes. It is estimated that today we have between 270 and 310 million guns in the hands of the general population of America. The American defense forces of the United States of America has 2 million seven hundred thousand weapons at its’ disposal; ten percent of what is in the hands of civilians. Law enforcement has 1.15 million arms in use today. The reason for this comparison is to identify the massive amount of weapons that are in America today and the absurdity of thinking America can be disarmed by stopping all gun sales. If all sales were suddenly stopped the guns for potential and active criminals are still available. What we do need is an in-depth background check on all gun sales and not allowing sales to those deemed mentally challenged or those that are convicted felons.
Unfortunately what the main issues we see today are results of our society and while schools have a major impact on the education of our children it is not the most important focal point in the development of our youth. When I was growing up the family was the core of training and it was there that values and moral rights were infused into the child. The child went to school and it was there that they were educated while at the same time learning respect for country while being introduced to social interaction and discipline. If a child did wrong he or she was punished. If a child did real bad he received corporal punishment; at least the male did as females would not be and should not be touched. If a child received a spanking at school and the parent heard about it the child could expect a second spanking when he got home.
Today so many of the children in our country have parents that want to be a friend and not be a teacher or a mentor. Parents are not taking the tough road to child rearing and instead of having the adolescent work for what they get the parent sees their role as an enabler to ensure that the child receives what they want and not what they deserve. This is not to ridicule the role of the parent in today’s world. The parent thinks they are doing what is right to let the child feel loved and materialistically fulfilled. One result of this type of child fulfillment is displayed when the child has children of their own and they are incapable of raising their own off spring. So many times we see the grandparents becoming the parents of a second generation. How unfair that these adults are forced to raise the children of their children.
When growing up a person could walk through the parking lots of our schools in the deep south and at least one gun was hanging in a gun rack in the back window of the truck. No one took notice. Let that same person drive down main street, pass a police officer and all the driver received would have been a friendly wave from the police officer. This youth that owns the weapon grew up understanding the power of the gun and how to use the gun and most importantly when the weapon should be used and when it should never be used.
During my childhood gun violence was rampant on television. Every western displayed someone being shot while “cop and robber” shows always had a shoot out between police and the bad guys. I remember the country being warned that violence on television would lead to violent behavior in the real world. People would say that in true war people don’t get up after being shot, brush themselves off and go home. Today it is even worse. Video games not only allow a person to observe but now empowers a person to participate in the actual killing without seeing the actual consequences of the action of killing.
The world is drastically changed today from a far more innocent and simpler way of life we experienced in the 50s and 60s. Instead of a rural America we have grown into an urban America where instant gratification is a way of life. Next week we’ll look at other underlying factors that have lead to horrific acts we see today. In the mean time let’s be more understanding on the “gun only” mentality as a cure for violence that grips a nation when we see such gut wrenching events as we have just witnessed.

 

 

 

America had the seeds of democracy planted two hundred and forty-one years ago.  Following the penning of the Declaration of Independence the Constitution of the United states was written.  It was not until 1788 that the document we know as the Constitution was ratified.  Three years later in 1791 the Constitution was amended with ten constitutional amendments that are referred to as the Bill of Rights.  These amendments have now expanded to consist of twenty-seven amendments.

 

The first amendment is one of the most far reaching and impacting pieces of legislation that has ever been produced in the history of man.  This small set of words has the influence to guarantee freedoms to the citizens of our great nation and these freedoms originate as part of the Constitution of the United States.  This is a remarkable development in democracy that had never been attempted before.  This amendment, the First Amendment, prohibits Congress from obstructing the exercise of certain individual freedoms: freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, and the right to petition.

 

The Congress of the United States made it certain that freedom of speech is not to be curtailed by the government.  It is written that “Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech.”   As much as freedom of speech and the right to descent is a right given to the citizens of the United States there are limits that must be maintained to insure equal justice.  When a person is invited to speak at a public forum this person is allowed by the constitution to address those that attend the speech.  Today many attend the speech and instead of allowing the speaker to address the mass the speaker is jeered and in many cases forced to leave the podium.  The rowdy thugs that disrupt speeches and gatherings wrap themselves in the Constitution and proclaim they have freedom of speech and they are within their rights to disrupt someone else’s freedoms of speech.

 

Just as indignant as the disruption of speeches is, the contempt displayed to elected federal officials is even more saddening.  These men and women who represent their districts in Washington go home to hold town hall meetings and hear from the citizens of the area they represent. Instead of constructive civil discussion and a trade of ideas, the elected officials are met with childish outbreaks and immature behavior from members in the crowd.  There is nothing constructive in the dialogue and those who came to the town hall to hear what is happening in the nation’s capital are denied the opportunity due to the unruly behavior of a few.

 

So when does freedom of speech and the right to decent go too far and treads on the right of others.  Anytime that a person is not allowed to give his point of view because it contradicts another person’s thoughts, values or beliefs; the person stopping the speaker is wrong.  There is not debate to this, there Is no negotiating the issue; the person interrupting and disrupting is wrong, end of story!

 

What is causing this type of behavior.  The answer is simple.  Lack of respect for an orderly society causes a breakdown in the moral fiber of a great nation.  Respect is a learned behavior and one that has been lost over the last several decades.  Doing right, learning respect and developing into a mature individual begins at home and is reinforced in our education systems.  Our children are the future of our nation.  It is important that they receive the understanding of human values from the time they take their first breaths and continue with this home education until they leave the nest.  Discipline must be allowed and encouraged in our education institutions.  Today  a child cannot receive corporal punishment at school.  Too bad; if a child is unruly and all else has failed; the use of the paddle has an intended meaning.  As a person that received his share of smacks on the rump, it definitely made an impression on my outlook on life without causing hostile tendencies.  In the past this was supported at home.  If a child was disciplined at school the student could expect to receive the same thing upon arriving at the home.  That is reinforcement for what is right and also reinforcement of our school systems.

 

Let us hope that we can become more respectful for our elected officials and each other.  If not then we will experience a wider void within our country that will threaten to eventually tear the country apart.