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3 Democrats faced expulsion in TN legislature, only the two named “Justin” were expelled

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Republicans in Tennessee held a vote to expel three Democrats from the state Legislature. Two of those Democrats were black, one was white. The white Democrat was allowed to stay.

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A lot of assumptions can be made from that nutshell of the story, but you can safely bet that’s the nutshell of the next 48 hours with perhaps a brief resurrection during the Sunday talk shows (pun intended). Democrats in Tennessee are eager to stoke those assumptions pointing to “The racism that is on display today! Wow!”

But is it racism on display?

For the bulk of media coverage it likely will be. It seems to be the lens through which stories must be contorted. After all, there’s not much controversy and click gold in pointing out “Three Democrats faced expulsion in TN, two were named Justin, one wasn’t. The Justins were ousted.” This headline would be true of the current story, but not an angle with a lot of legs.

The racism angle doesn’t look to have a lot of legs either except it will. There are political advantages to be leveraged, and politics is war by other means. In reading the AP account of this story this morning, I noted in the latter half a key difference between the protesting legislators other than the color of their skin. It was pointed out during the expulsion proceedings — the Democrat who was white pled her case by pointing out she protested in the chamber, but did not “raise her voice nor did she use the bullhorn.”

The other two Democrats did use the bullhorn– indoors– to disrupt proceedings.

As someone whose career has led them through several protests with bullhorns I can assure you that its use is vastly more disruptive and irritating than one without. Surely that distinction would be enough to sway a few votes and keep the Democrat not named “Justin” in?

Doesn’t matter. The infamous “optics” of politics matter, and Democrats in the state know they have a well-framed story to tell, and much of the media is unlikely to let such an angle go wasted, especially against the GOP in a Southern state.

Now for a quick list of other exciting insights and first reactions:

1. Have Tennessee Republicans not seen Star Wars? If not, just go to YouTube and check out the Obi-Wan vs. Darth show down. Spoiler Alert! Obi doesn’t make it. But he says, “If you strike me down now Darth, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” And he does! He becomes part of the all-powerful Force aiding his allies from the beyond. Star Wars fans therefore know, sometimes striking down (in this case, expelling) an opponent only makes them stronger.

2. Back to the same theme. You have two young members protesting with bullhorns and disrupting the proceedings, so to “punish” them for the disruption, you gave them a national platform on a silver platter.

Who, pray tell, couldn’t see that coming?

Also, the two members expelled are black, the member without the bullhorn was white and not expelled, but how was that going to look?  Inspector Clouseau wouldn’t be able to miss that one.
3. Shame, no shame? State Rep. Gloria Johnson, the white lady who avoided expulsion by pointing out she didn’t yell or use a bullhorn, then throws her colleagues under the bus for sparing her based on her own reasoning — that she didn’t deserve expulsion because she protested differently.  She told reporters  she wouldn’t be surprised if the real reason they let her stay was the racism of her colleagues and the pale color of her skin. This strikes me as a particularly shameful and cynical stoking of racial division and the reduction of civility in politics.

4. Biden’s unique sense of Democracy and outrage:  Reacting from Washington D.C., President Biden called the expulsions ” undemocratic.”  For clarity, the president sees the disruption of the vast majority of elected officials as the proper exercise of Democracy? Think about it.  Expelling members is an assault on Democracy because you’re denying the representation of the voters who elected the disruptors, BUT the legislators who disrupt the duly elected representatives of the people from the rest of the state from doing their job of representing the people are champions of Democracy.  Got it.

5. Did I mention this spills over from a debate about school safety in the aftermath of a mass murder by a severely deranged young woman? Some Ds think the disruption is justified because the Rs weren’t going along with the gun restrictions Ds want and their position is to “save lives” while the other position is to sacrifice them. It couldn’t possibly be a more complicated debate. Right? Of course, that’s a convenient way to end debate and democracy if you decide your views are the only views legitimate and worthy of debate. It’s a way of thinking that guarantees rules apply to the other side but not to you.  Also, grandstanding in the wake of such tragedy, even if sincere, gives me a feeling of sorrow and disgust.

 

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Elections

America No More…

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After watching with over a hundred others the newly released movie, Civil War, I left the theater stunned, and I was not alone. Was it a good movie? Just a deeply unsettling one! Could it really happen? You don’t even want to imagine it! But with Biden’s assault on America continuing and Trump reemerging as the favored GOP candidate, the American division is growing. More and more citizens are getting angrier as their standard of living is in jeopardy and illegals are getting benefits citizens can only dream of.

Spoiling the movie’s plot is never appropriate, but when Western forces from Texas, Florida, and even California take on the elected President, the country is left in a civil war. We watch as desensitized media professionals cover the death of hundreds of American citizens. To the film’s media, the war is just a once-in-a-lifetime story that deserves to be captured one picture at a time. After all, it’s the media’s job. They are just feeding citizens what they want—blood, gore, winners, and victims. What would happen if America descends into such chaos? This movie provides one disturbing view, one that, God help us, must never happen.

One thing is clear, when a country loses trust in its leader’s ability to preserve their cherished freedoms and ensure equal treatment under the law, even insurrection seems somehow possible. That is a nightmare no American should have to entertain, but more and more Americans seem to be losing hope in the future of our country. They don’t trust elections. Many don’t even like the Presidential choices presented to them.

The Founding Fathers valued freedom enough to unleash a revolution against the greatest power at the time. Enough citizens joined them in securing what most at the time believed impossible, independence. Yes, insurrection hatched our beloved America. Belief in equal rights and freedom are powerful forces that have always driven patriotic Americans to action.


Even with our differences, most Americans believe in property rights, voting rights, law enforcement to keep us safe, freedom of speech, and personal responsibility. Unfortunately, more and more Americans feel these values are in question, and they are not sure America can be saved!

Many Americans no longer even believe that elections will produce a lawful winner. They don’t trust the voting machines. They want paper ballots that can be counted. They don’t believe multiple days are needed. Hasn’t one day of voting always been enough? They want required IDs and signed mail-in ballots. They fear ballot harvesting is just another name for ‘manufacturing” all the votes you need to ensure a fraudulent victory. Are American fair elections no more!

Many no longer believe that the enforcement of law is fair and sure. While former President Donald Trump has been charged with multiple “crimes,” President Joe Biden’s similar actions aren’t even charged. Hunter Biden’s influence peddling with money set aside for the “Big Guy” are not even covered in the mainstream media. The Dept. of Justice is quick to charge Trump, but with the Bidens, we hear nothing but crickets. People who commit crimes are being let go instead of being held accountable. Is American law and order no more!

Under President Trump, our border was finally more under control. Under Biden, his open border has been continually flooding our country with illegals from around the world. They come expecting benefits at the expense of taxpaying citizens. Illegals overwhelm services in our urban areas. Legal immigrants had to wait years to enter and are fuming at this invasion of illegals rushing to the front of the line and expecting to be accepted, supported, and allowed to become citizens. Is America’s secure border no more!

We thought in America, your home was your castle. If you work to buy the home of your dreams, you were sure that your property rights were secure in a community that you loved. But today, squatters are taking over vacant homes and fending off owners who want them to leave their property. Illegals are being told to come to America, find an empty home, and move in. In the name of equity, governments are rezoning the suburbs and requiring the building of low-income housing where it is not wanted. Are America’s property rights no more!

Do you believe America is lost? Do you believe nothing can reverse this march to chaos? Do you believe that it is time to buy your own guns to protect your family when the government won’t? Is a civil war coming? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you are in danger of losing the optimistic attitude that has characterized Americans for two centuries. This is our country. This is not the time for surrender. It’s time to fight to preserve America the best way you can—vote for candidates who promise to preserve the rights you value most.

Your vote does matter. There are no perfect candidates, but the party positions make a difference in this critical election. If you want law and order, secure borders, fair elections, property rights, and a return to personal responsibility, there is only one party to support. Vote for every GOP candidate you are given the opportunity to support, or it may very well be America no more!

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Biden wants to tie Israel’s hands

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After Iran launched an extensive drone and missile attack against Israel, Iran’s president vowed to completely destroy Israel if it proceeds with a military response. In plain language, Israel is not allowed to react as any other country would after being attacked. That seems to be the opinion of many world leaders, including Joe Biden.

That’s like saying that the US had no right to retaliate after Japan’s attack on December 7th. This absurd policy applies only to Israel. If Iran launched missiles against the US, imagine what we would do in response. (Of course, with a wimp in the White House, there is a good chance that we would do nothing.)

On the evening of 13 April 2024, Iran launched hundreds of deadly missiles against various sites in Israel. Iran’s attack was presumably in retaliation for an Israeli strike on the Iranian consulate in Damascus. Israel’s justification for its attack is that the Iranian consulate has been the center for Iran’s terrorist activities throughout the Middle East. The consulate “did not have diplomatic immunity,” according to attorney Alan Dershowitz, “because it was not being used for diplomatic purposes; it was being used to plan military attacks against Israel.”

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With assistance from the US, the UK, neighboring Jordan and other nations, Israel successfully intercepted nearly all the missiles and drones. Despite the lack of damage, Iran’s intent clearly was to inflict serious harm. Iran underestimated Israel’s ability to defend itself. Now Iran’s president Ebrahim Raisi has vowed to completely destroy Israel if it proceeds with even the “tiniest invasion” of Iran.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his country would be the one to decide whether and how to respond to the Iranian attack, brushing off calls for restraint. “The state of Israel will do whatever is necessary to defend itself,” Netanyahu said. “Everything is on the table right now,” said a source in the Israeli government. Israel possesses an impressive range of high-tech weaponry, including nuclear weapons and F35 fighter planes that can overwhelm Iran’s outmoded air force.

“Iran declared war on Israel by sending more than 300 bombs in Israel’s direction, aimed at civilian as well as military targets in Jerusalem and other locations,” said Alan Dershowitz. “As a matter of law and morality, Israel is entitled to respond to this act of war by overwhelming, even disproportionate, force against Iranian military targets.”

Biden has not supported Dershowitz’s argument. Instead, he has “sent a clear message to the mullahs that there would be no consequences for their rogue actions,” said Lisa Daftari, a leading Iranian-American expert. “What we are seeing is a manifestation of weak policies and the ayatollah’s correct read on American foreign policy.” Biden’s policy, said Yaakov Katz, a leading Israeli security expert, “does not work and the world’s strategy of diplomacy and sanctions is not effective. The world needs to shift gears and change the way it has tried to confront Iran.”

Former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe agreed that the Biden administration’s tepid policy has emboldened Iran. “Joe Biden’s reaction to that hit in Damascus sent a message to Iran and to the rest of the world that the US was not with Israel, that the US was reluctant to support Israel on this. And I think that emboldened Iran. And as one of the former intelligence officials in Iran said to me, with friends like Joe Biden, Israel doesn’t need more enemies.”

Biden has warned Israel not to take action, said Alan Dershowitz. “Biden wants Israel simply to proclaim victory and not respond appropriately. This will only encourage Iran to take further military action against Israel either directly or through its numerous proxies,” Dershowitz warns. “If the [Iranian] regime felt endangered, it could attack Israel with its nuclear weapons, as it has threatened to do. That is an important reason why Iran’s potential nuclear arsenal should be destroyed before it can be deployed.”

“This is the time to act,” Dershowitz concludes. “Iran has provided Israel and the United States with a complete legal and moral justification for destroying its nuclear weapons program and for beginning the process toward regime change. If we do not act now, it may be too late.”

Ed Brodow is a conservative political commentator and author of two No. 1 Amazon Best Sellers, AMERICA ON ITS KNEES: The Cost of Replacing Trump with Biden, and THE WAR ON WHITES: How Hating White People Became the New National Sport.

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