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America Is Better than This

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Some black Americans love to rail about white privilege and the systemic racism that they claim permeates America even now. They are busy promoting Critical Race Theory in our schools, removing historical statues, and working to rewrite our national story through the lens of irredeemable racism. To the most radical, rejecting any of their initiatives is all the proof needed to confirm how racist you are, whether you are aware of it or not.

For decades, America has worked to integrate communities and the workplace, and silently endured the racist attacks in hopes that all would gradually appreciate the progress made.

Yes, it is true that there are racist whites, and there are racist blacks who have committed hate crimes. Even though few in number, no matter what the race of perpetrator, racism of any kind should be condemned by all responsible citizens. The L.A. County Human Relation’s Commission’s annual Hate Crime Report for 2021 reports a significant increase in hate crimes. In 2020, there were fewer hate crimes against whites reported (50) than blacks (169). But between 2016 and 2020, the report notes that the average rates of violence against whites (67%) and blacks (65%) were very close. Hate isn’t limited to any one race, and the numbers are not as large as the race baiters would have us believe.

Far too many blacks want to put the sole focus on white racism. In a way, claiming victimhood status seems to bring with it a “black privilege.” Blacks can make blatantly racist comments about whites without cost or condemnation. The media gives them platforms to express their hateful words, and they never even have to apologize.

You don’t have to look far to find examples. Rep. Keith Ellison, congressman from Minnesota and Democratic National Committee deputy chairman, is known for his extreme comments: “You hear Republicans say, ‘We’re the party of Lincoln.’ He wouldn’t recognize these people. The fact is that the Republican Party today is the party of racism. Now I’m not saying every Republican is a racist, but I’m saying their party does hold that up. … It is the Republican Party in 2017 that says, ‘wall them off, ban them out, no transgender in the military.’ If it’s mean, if it’s racist, if it’s greedy, it’s coming from them.”

Even in the sports world, ESPN and HBO personality Bomani Jones recently blamed white people for the firing of the Dolphins’ Coach Flores: “I just don’t know why people try to make this far more complex than it is. What’s the problem? White people. Who are the ones that are making these decisions? White people. Who are the ones that won’t change their decision making? White people. Who are the ones that only do anything in a different way when it comes these matters at the threat of litigation? White people.”

These accusations have no facts to back them up. Now, if you want to find racist quotations by whites against blacks, a search will show plenty. Maybe such racist statements and video clips make for prime-time fodder for partisan talk shows, but it is not the real America.

But let’s be honest, the vast majority of all Americans reject such comments. Is it not time for us to once again focus on where we want to be instead of dwelling on a racist past we want to leave behind? There is too much good to build on to let the race baiters have their way.

Racism and special privilege are wrong no matter what the race. America was founded on the affirmation of equal rights for all. We have never fully lived up to that promise, but to deny we have not made progress is a perpetuate a divisive lie. The few racists that do exist are routinely criticized by responsible blacks and whites alike.

America fought a war to end slavery, and we must continue the work of living out our cherished values. We can’t let race baiters of any race stop us from continuing to make progress in living into our hard-fought ideals. Let’s stop the blaming and the name calling. Let us all work to judge others by their character and how they treat their fellow man, not the color of their skin. May we never forget to cherish the shared privilege of living in this great country were freedom and opportunity still reign supreme for all the citizens willing to live out their own pursuit of happiness.

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Dr. Terry Paulson is a PhD psychologist and author of The Optimism Advantage, They Shoot Managers Don't They, Speak Like a Pro, Meditations for the Trail, and The Dinner: The Political Conversation Your Mother Told You Never to Have. Since founding Paulson and Associates, Inc. in Agoura Hills, CA, Dr. Paulson has presented to such companies as IBM, 3M, Kaiser, Nationwide, SONY, Starbucks, Wal-Mart, and hundreds of hospitals, government agencies, and associations. Dr. Paulson is a past president of both the Global Speakers Federation and the National Speakers Association. He’s been inducted into NSA’s CPAE Speakers Hall of Fame, an honor given to less than 230 speakers worldwide. Dr. Paulson is a long-time conservative Republican who has spoken to numerous Republican groups. He currently is a regular op-ed columnist for townhall.com and politicrossing.com. Terry brings knowledge, tasteful humor, and a passion for conservative principles to every presentation. Dr. Paulson graduated with honors from UCLA and received his PhD in psychology and an MA in theology from Fuller Graduate School of Psychology in Pasadena, CA.



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Guns

The Age of Rage

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Many Republicans are seething in response to Biden’s destructive agenda that has contributed to high inflation, ad exploding deficit, urban lawlessness, and an out-of-control Southern border. More and more Americans are eager to turn their anger into a November landslide against Democrats. They’re tired of the rampant lawlessness, the irresponsible DAs unwilling to prosecute criminals, and the deficit spending that has unleashed inflation impacting the lives of every American.

The recent leak about the reversal of Roe v. Wade has given woke extremists all they need to justify angry, even violent, demonstrations. The decision is not even final, but liberals are marching on the homes of conservative Supreme Court Justices. Some justices have moved from their homes to ensure the safety of their families.

The lockdowns and restrictions tied to the COVID pandemic have certainly added to the anger of many citizens. People watch shows that reinforce their own views. Such one-sided journalism helps justify violent actions. But let’s be clear. Viewers respond with high ratings from the steady stream of extremists. Rage is the “eye candy” that now attracts viewers. Yes, there are extreme views expressed on either side of our political divide, but the vast majority of rage and violence is coming from the left.

Press Secretary Jen Psaki has complained about threats and personal attacks, but Republicans point out that the party has not publicly shared the addresses of any Biden administration official’s home address.

After the leak of a potential Supreme Court reversal on Roe v. Wade, a pro-abortion protest in downtown Los Angeles turned into a violent clash with law enforcement after officers were called to disperse the increasingly disruptive crowds, resulting in the injury of at least one officer. What started as a small protest outside the city’s federal courthouse building, grew increasingly rowdy and disruptive. The protest grew despite promises from state officials and liberal lawmakers to codify the ability to access abortion in California.

A group called “Jane’s Revenge” claimed to be behind the attack on the offices of Wisconsin Family Action. The “warning” demanded that pro-life organizations disband in 30 days. They claimed, “We have run thin on patience for those who seek to strip us of what little autonomy we have left.” The group claimed that it had groups “all over the U.S.”

Columnist and pundit Victor Davis Hanson wrote, “Politics are resembling the violent last days of the Roman Republic. An illegal leak of a possible impending Supreme Court reversal of Roe v. Wade that would allow state voters to set their own abortion laws has created a national hysteria. Never has a White House tacitly approved mobs of protesters showing up at Supreme Court justices’ homes to rant and bully them into altering their votes.”

Commenting on the angry demonstrations, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnel said it well, “It is an attempt to replace the rule of law with the rule of mobs.” It’s the mobs that get the coverage, and that coverage encourages more attacks.

The rage hasn’t been limited to the abortion issue. In January, the leftist ShutDownDC group picketed outside Sen. Josh Hawley’s (R-MO) home in Virginia. Hawley said at the time, “Tonight while I was in Missouri, Antifa scumbags came to our place in DC and threatened my wife and newborn daughter, who can’t travel. They screamed threats, vandalized, and tried to pound open our door. Let me be clear: My family, and I will not be intimidated by leftwing violence.”

Since that threat, there have been seemingly a stream of violent attacks and murders. From the mowing down of innocent black citizens in Buffalo New York, to the ongoing carnage in inner-city Chicago, and to the attack on worshipers at the Taiwanese Presbyterian Church, the violence is just expanding.

We may have ushered in the age of rage, but the vast majority of Americans do not want it to continue. It’s time we all demand an end to violence and stop legitimizing destructive demonstrations. The answer to hate speech is not violence or forced silence. The answer is more speech, more respectful, thoughtful, even passionate dialogue across our divide. Freedom and rights are only real when you extend and ensure those rights to those who openly disagree with you. Let freedom ring. Let’s return to disagreeing without being quite so disagreeable. Rage may get you on the news, but it doesn’t ensure the future of our republic. Demand more. Start being part of the answer by being responsible for your own actions.

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Life

Ignore Much of What Pundits Have to Say

Can we be confident in advice we receive from people who have not mastered what they teach?

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When the opportunity arose, I attended a lecture by one of the most well-known authors and speakers in America. I had previewed his CD and read two of his books prior to his lecture; in person, he lived up to my expectations. So, I was intrigued when a friend, involved with bringing this speaker to our area relayed a personal incident to me. 

Directly following the speaker’s presentation, my friend was responsible for driving him to the airport, and accompanying him until his flight departed. That summer afternoon, it was rainy and the skies were dark.

As it turned out, the author was a nervous flyer and took several drinks in the airport lounge prior to boarding the plane.  I found this incident to be amazing because I had so often heard him say things such as, “Everything in this universe is perfect.” It struck me that, in many ways, the speaker wasn’t practicing his philosophy. Nevertheless, all human beings have their faults and foibles and, as time passed, I forgot about the incident.

High-Priced Gurus

One morning, I had the occasion to pick up USA Today. In the lifestyle section, there was a feature on a relationship guru and author of international best-sellers on relationships. She had won the “Oscar” of infomercials, earning $24 million in a single year.  

In this published interview, the reporter asked her why we should listen to a relationship guru who had been married five times. Five times? I couldn’t believe it! She had wedded her fifth husband, some 11 years her junior, only a short time before producing her award-winning infomercial on having a successful relationship. 

In the infomercial, she is featured as having a loving relationship with her husband. Okay, but in no way does the infomercial tell us that he is her fifth husband and that she had married him three weeks ago.

Not Walking their Talk

I had a flash from the past: I recalled the story about the nervous flyer author. Yet, nothing prepared me for the revelations about the relationship guru, a self-proclaimed expert, using the slickest 21st-century marketing available to sell her information and products.  

She was well-versed in her subject matter. Upon hearing her advice, I recognized that it did seem sound. However, the larger issue is, “Can we be confident in the advice we receive from those who have not mastered what they teach, or who do not even remotely walk their talk?”

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