Another week...right? Welcome back to Sunday Morning Coffee my look at some of the news stories you've seen or, perhaps, missed and all laced with my commentary. Proud to be disliked by members of the Republican Party and their enablers. Lots to chat about so let's go.
Tired? I Am
It is debilitating caring for people. I know you feel it too. Every morning we wake up and before getting out of bed hit the news button on our phones to see what insanity took place in the hours we, fitfully, slept. It's hard work shouting into the wind fighting for equality and respect for our fellow humans not fortunate enough to lap from the golden trough. It makes a body weary doing the good work that needs to be done to protect and uphold people who may not be white or straight.
Meanwhile some of my Christian friends who tell us, over and over, that life is the most important of all things don't seem to mind when the elderly continue to die in massive numbers, alone in nursing homes, separated from their family. "They were going to die...anyway." They don't seem to mind when COVID19 takes the lives of those people who languish in our for-profit prison system. "They are guilty...so what?" They don't seem to mind when this pandemic takes a disproportionate number of Black and Brown Americans or those immigrants who are forced to labor so others can eat. "They made the choice, not my problem." Or when people can be beaten and killed because they are Gay or Muslim. The image says it all. I've gotta suspect this guy will be so ready for church to re-open...or maybe not.
One can get...weary. But we must continue to fight. Darkness can only be defeated when a light shows the way forward.
It's no secret; the president wants fewer of you to vote and I believe he is setting the stage for refusing to acknowledge his loss in November. He threatens to withhold federal funds from Michigan and Nevada because those states sent out requests forms that had to be filled out if people wanted to vote by mail. Meanwhile Iowa did the same thing...but no condemnation. That could mean that Iowa doesn't really matter or it would look bad if "45" said something bad about his "lap-dog" Gov. Kim Reynolds (R-IA).
The play-book is set and we're going to see more of this activity in "battleground" states. We've already seen what the GOP tried, and failed, when it comes to suppressing the vote...say in Wisconsin. This is going to be a violent campaign and the stage is being set right in front of us all.
Go to Church!
It's so refreshing to have a president who truly respects the First Amendment and is willing to punish elected officials who refuse to allow churches to open their doors to the masses. Oh...wait. It says...what?
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Finally we have a devout man of deep faith in the White House. Heads up kids...this is just another ploy of the president. It is meant to froth up his base. You want to go to church? Please go...and while you are there you might want to follow the example of Jesus. You know, actually read what it was that is he is purported to have said. But you won't it will not fit in with your world view. But, what do I know...I'm just one of them Jews.
You do know why states are clamoring to "open up" right? It's money. Pure and simple. Think of the tax revenue that has been lost due to businesses being closed. This really isn't about jobs or workers this is about taxes. Meanwhile the president says "no more money" to help states and communities. Why? It's all about politics and taxes.
So you wanna go out, mingle and help out your city and state? Have at it my friends. You first.
Meanwhile, Iowa House District 44
Wanna know how wacky things get over on "The Right"? There is going to be a primary among "Republicans" in the communities of Clive and Waukee. One of those running is, perhaps, a bonafide member of the GOP who is facing a not-so-much Republican. My friend Kenan Judge (D-Waukee) flipped that seat in 2018 and I predict that he'll hold it given the awful way in which the GOP has preformed over the past several years.
But, back to the primary. I'm surprised that the Des Moines Register didn't dig a bit deeper into the story of the newly minted Republican Paul Knupp. Some of us remember when Paul was running for congress as a...wait for it...Democrat. And, quite a liberal Democrat at that. I know that, as do some of my friends, because we hosted Paul during the Windsor Heights Democrats meeting in June of 2017. Damn cameras and notes...right?
By the way the guest speaker for the Windsor Heights Democrats meeting this week will be the Chair of the Iowa Democratic Black Caucus, Al Womble.
Justice for Quan
Yesterday several friends put together a live and Facebook event "Justice for Quan". For those of you who don't know or perhaps missed it DarQuan "Quan" Jones was savagely beaten on the 16th of May. He suffered a broken bones and had it not been for a couple of women who heard the screams and came to his aid...he may have been murdered.
What was it that might have been the reason for the beating? "Walking While Black" pretty much sums it up. The attackers have not been found but they were, from accounts, white folks who pretty much resented some uppity black person walking in public.
The rally was about "No Hate in our State" which is a nice thing to say but there is hate in Iowa. And white folks need to get the message and join with our brothers and sisters in demanding justice and stamping out the violence. That only happens when people who know something say something. Be brave my white siblings...be brave. (Photo: Des Moines Register)
Thank you to friends, Rob Johnson, Al Womble, Vicki Brown and Ashley S. Jewett for organizing the event yesterday.
Another Dead Baby
This morning Des Moines, Iowa police say that 17 year-old Ishmael Muhammad died of a gunshot wound to the neck. Police have charged a 16 year-old with involuntary manslaughter, carrying weapons and interference with official acts. The story is that the teens were together in a house when an illegally possessed handgun was "unintentionally fired" and struck Muhammad.
Where do these guns come from? Why is it so easy to obtain them? I don't know but a family is, once again, grieving.
I know, this is late...again. I was doing so good to get Sunday Morning Coffee out by 9AM but since Netflix. Damn Netflix!
The other day I was looking for something and ran across a couple of mementos that go back several years. One of those items was my name badge when I served as the Chaplain for the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce. It was, really, the best job ever and I believe I may have been the only Jew (and Democrat) to have ever held that position. That experience took me all over the United States as well as other nations and I will be, forever, grateful for that opportunity. I learned so very much and it was wonderful to minister to so many in such a meaningful way.
That "search" was begun because my friend Newton Standridge asked about some campaign items from my successful run for President of the Iowa Junior Chamber. Little did I know that a couple of days later I would learn that Newton and Carol's son, Steven Newton Standridge, had just died. Stunned...and saddened. May his memory be a blessing.
Thanks for reading..and let us remember why Memorial Day...is.