Good Sunday Morning to you and time for religion and politics with a little gossip thrown in for flavor. This is Sunday Morning Coffee, my opportunity to move into the world you love to hate...come on admit it. Mom said. "Never talk about those things". because she knew so many people don't know much about either. Mom was right. But, why linger here...there is so much below.
The Republican Party is going nuts and there is even rumor it may reach out and draft Mitt Romney, or some other sane individual, to carry the banner in 2016. Not making this up. The current crop of candidates sound more like they are running for office in 1930 Germany than in the United States. And the folks whose lives depend of saving the party know that if Mr. Trump ends up being the nominee they will not win an election, even on the local level, for years. It's what you get when you coddle the Tea Party types, openly tell your minions that government is evil and continue to block progress of any sort. Nice going.
The Result You Love
I was at a Chamber of Commerce function Waukee this past week and there was some guy sporting a very large Trump for President button. The only political button in the room of 75+ people. I was on a tight timeline but would have loved to have snapped a photo of him chatting with several members of the Clive City Council. Anyway the result of the growing hate in America is evidence that you are connecting. Recently Don Black, a founder of Stormfront, a prominent white supremacist group said of Donald Trump, "He's certainly creating a movement that will continue independently of him even if he does fold at some point. He has sparked an insurgency and I don't think it's going to go away!" Black added that Trump's words and actions have created such a dramatic increase in traffic to his website that he's considering upgrading his servers. Fear, my friends is powerful. (Cartoon - Tim Lloyd)
Rep. André Carson (D-Ind.) has linked the rising number of attacks to Trump’s Demagogy:
“You have other politicians who are joining the bandwagon and who are fanning the flames of bigotry. That concerns me because we’re putting people — i.e. Muslims, Sikhs, Hindus and others — into the line of fire exposing them to death threats, discrimination at the workplace and assaults.”
But he would say that...he's a Muslim you know. Can you imagine that? A MUSLIM serving in the United States House of Representatives. No doubt speaking up for sharia law.
Pay to Play
Last week I paid $25 to go to a Legislative Breakfast sponsored by the Windsor Heights Chamber, West Des Moines Chamber, Clive Chamber and the Waukee Chamber. First time I can remember paying money to have the opportunity to ask questions of legislators. If you want to know how successful the GOP is in "The Burbs" consider that of the seven legislators invited to attend only one, Sen. Matt McCoy is a democrat who serves the one or two people in West Des Moines who are progressives. Even without Sen. McCoy it was truly a bi-partisan love fest. Rep. Peter Cownie (R-WDM), who actually showed up, told the group how much he, "Loved being a representative for the people of West Des Moines". Rep. Chris Hagenow (R-Windsor Heights) said he is committed to working with everyone. Rep. Rob Taylor (R-WDM) whom I understand is a Ben Carson supporter, said some nice things. Rep. Ralph Watts (R-Adel) was there but I hardly recognized him, it's been a long time. State Senator Charles Schneider a Republican who represents most of the Western Burbs said nice things too. The major talk was about education and the budget. Each promised to work to make sure education was funded and a priority rather than wait until the last minute. There was also talk about the under-funded public pensions in Iowa. IPERS and the 411 Pension Fund, according to Sen. Schneider, are both severely underfunded and he promised to "get answers". The crowd was nice too. See...I can get along.
Let's Talk Religion
Last week my friend Desmund Adams called me to ask my opinion about faith. We have these conversations often. Desmund said, "I feel as if God is speaking to me to do something to bring faith groups together and to honor Him." You see, Desmund was baptized a year ago today. He and his church friends chopped a hole in the ice on the river and that experience touched him greatly. The sticky part is that, as you may know, Desmund is running for the United States Congress in the Third District. "I do not want this to be political", he told me. To prove that point he went to the office of Rep. David Young (R-IA) to personally invite him and called his Democratic Primary opponent Jim Mowrer and asked him to attend. The event, scheduled for today at 2:00PM on the west steps of the Iowa State Capitol will be attended by Christians, Muslims, Jews and I know he has reached out to members of the Sikh and Hindu faiths as well. He asked that each come and pray, in their own way, to honor God and to show unity in a belief in a higher power.
By the way he is doing this off site of his campaign and asked his staff not to mention a word on social media. "It's not about me; it's about honoring God and asking for peace and understanding." Always a class act...always.
Gotta go! It's been a busy weekend. I was with my congregation, Adas Israel, in Mason City Friday and Saturday and during the, nearly three hour, study session on Saturday that brings together people from various faith groups I did hear words of concern regarding Islam. I asked the people there if the conversation would be different if several members of the faith were present so that we could all learn. I think that will happen next month.
Also three of our six grand-children were with us last night as we lit the 7th light for Chanukah. That was special. May the light of the holiday shine brightly on you...and yours.
Have a great Sunday and thanks for reading.