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I only look white.

Ruddy complexion, curly auburn hair, now starting to grey. "What part of Ireland is your family from," isn't a rare question. Apparently I'm a LIBI - looks Irish, but isn't.

My minority identity is pretty strong. My family is Jewish, both sides. All 4 of my grandparents were emigrants & while they learned it as children, English was a second language for both my parents. Even I heard more than just English as a child. My family came here to escape European antisemitism. The States weren't devoid of antisemític sentiments. They just weren't what they were in Europe. Your prospects were much brighter here than there. The bulk of my father's family succeeded in coming over. Sadly, not the story for my mother's family. Particularly hard hit was my maternal grandmother's family. The town she was from was taken off the map by the Nazis. It no longer exists. The only two to survive were my grandmother and her eldest brother, the only two that were here in the states prior to the war.

Both my father and his brother wanted to become physicians. My uncle succeeded, although he was most of the way through a PhD program before he was able to get a seat in a medical school at the same midwestern public university. Despite graduating summa cum from Syracuse University with a dual major in political science and bio chemistry, my father wasn't able to gain entry to either medical or law school in this country in the early 1950s. Why did he go to Syracuse? Simple. They were one of the private universities willing to accept Jews in 1948. (Incidentally, Jerry Stiller was one of my father's fraternity brothers.)

Growing up in the safety of New York City's "melting pot" I never feared for my safety because of my ethnicity, the basic safety in numbers. However, after my grandfather's death, post a long battle with lung cancer in the summer of 1968, my parents took us on a road trip from New York to Florida. I was 13. We pulled off the interstate somewhere in the rural Georgia, to stop for gas and something to eat. Walking into a country diner, we sat and patiently waited for service. Though my mother is a blue-eyed blonde, Pop had the map of eastern Europe for a face & my youngest sister had a gold star of David hanging on her neck. After 20 minutes, a waitress sauntered over, leaned over to speak quietly to my mother, who was seated next to me. With a saccharine drawl over pursed lips she said, "we don't serve your kind here. I suggest you take your children and leave, before something untowards happens." With the nod of her head, she gestured over her shoulder towards two rather large men in overalls seated at the counter, both of whom glared menacingly in our direction. We left, leaving behind a piece of my innocence. Years later, I would read about lynchings of Jews, including one in outside of Atlanta in 1915 & feel much more comfortable with my parents move to retreat. .מאָדנע פרוכט (strange fruit.)

Most associate the KKK with the American south, but historically they've flexed their muscle in areas far flung. How about in Queens, New York in 1927? There was a march & with a riot that followed. Post riot, a number of people were arrested, including Fred Trump. That name familiar? It should be. He's the Donald's father. Perhaps this explains the president's tepid response condemning the recent events in Charlottesville, claiming both sides were to blame for the violence, where a young woman peacefully protesting was killed by a supremacist who plowed his van into the crowd, ala an ISIS inspired attack.

One of the Charlottesville synagogues had three white supremacists, armed with semi automatic rifles standing across the street while their congregation met for services Saturday morning. I guess simply being a person of color, or Jewish appears to be provocation. They got to listen to those man screaming for people to burn down the synagogue as the congregation stood there in worship. (A letter from the rabbi of my sister's congregation in New Jersey of her communication with the congregation in Charlottesville will be posted to follow this post. Please do read it.)

I am clearer now than ever that I am a minority person, who is not safe within the borders of my own country. That we have a president who cannot unequivocally and immediately condemn in no uncertain terms, racial and ethnic hatred as antithetical to everything this country stands for, gives me great pause. Reality is he is both a cause and a symptom of the pervasive underlying bigotry that still exists in a large portion of this country. There is no racial, ethnic, religious, or social minority within this country he is unwilling to throw under the bus, if it suits his needs & sadly enough, he has a like minded community to preach to.

We must work in coalition and unity to stand up for what is right. Jew must support Muslim, who must support Hispanic, who must support African-American, who must support LGBT, who must support women, who must support environmentalist, who must support Native American, and so on, and so on. We must speak with clarity when we speak truth to power. Anything less insures our failure, if not out right subjugation.
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Forgive the hyperbole in the title for this post. I am deadly serious.

We are living in dangerous times right now. At the risk of offending some who supported him blindly, we have put the fox in charge of the henhouse and we may pay for it dearly. We need to be vigilant and carefully pay attention to forces that have likely been behind the scenes, engineering putting the fox in charge. I have often said in the past to understand why things are as they are, you have to follow the money. That dictum remains I think all too true.

Rachel Maddow is a major voice that needs to be heard and listened to. She brings to the airwaves a thirst for truth and examination. If you don't catch her on cable, I strongly suggest you subscribe to the podcast of her show. Specifically, listen this past Friday's show and then tell me you're not disturbed, perturbed, and asking for more information. The appointments of Jeff Sessions, Rex Tillerson and Wilbur Ross to the cabinet now make much more sense to me.

And I'm starting to have greater respect to some of the intelligence community.

Seriously, if you do nothing else today download Friday's podcast and listen to it!

Then join the resistance.
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I'm angry. I'm angry at the turn of events in this country which feel incredibly hostile to anyone identified as "the other". As much as it pains me to say it, it feels to me right this moment if you are not white, Anglo, heterosexual, cis-gendered, Christian, & a native English speaker, the United States has become incredibly unwelcoming, if not out right hostile. Is it being driven by our current president, or is he simply a symptom of a larger malaise within this country?

With the change in the administrations, we have gone from 'class' to crass, from the audacity of hope, to simple audacity, from a society that was moving towards inclusivity, to one now turning it's back & embracing exclusivity. The more I watch Donald Trump, the more I ask how in the name of Sam Hill did this man get elected? He seems to vary from bigot, to buffoon, to bully all within the space of a single paragraph. My response to almost everything I hear him say is either to cringe, shake my head, or want to throw something. It's painful when I respect the office and yet hold no respect for the man who currently holds it.

As I alluded earlier, that I keep hearing people support him, & actually cheering his actions on, doesn't just sadden and disappoint me, it scares the bejeezus out of me. I may be white, but I'm neither a Christian,l nor heterosexual, and while an American citizen, I'm the child of an immigrant family. Having lost the bulk of my mother's family during the holocaust, as they did not have the wherewithal to get out, I find myself asking if this new president is a harbinger of still worse to come? Will we as nation rise up and fight back, or is it time for people like me to start thinking about getting out?
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I cannot honestly take credit for that statement l. It was given voice by a BBC reporter this morning. My G-d, how apt!

All one needs to do is to look at arial photos done of his Inauguration Day crowds and compare them to photos from either of the two previous inaugurations. You know the two. They were for the illegitimate Kenyan the Donald railed against for 8 years.

Moreover, from arial photos taken just 24 hours later, estimates are the women's march brought 5-600,000 people protesting Trump and his ilk. The administration's response? Send a bellicose press secretary out to yell at the press, accuse them of lying to the American public and with that he turned on his heel and marched out, allowing not a single question. WTF!?!

You may be entitled to your own opinion, but you're not entitled to your own set of facts.
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Meryl Streep was given the lifetime achievement award at the Golden Globes. Well deserved, if you ask me. She is an amazing talent, a virtual chameleon, with an enormous body of work stretching back to the 70's.

She criticized the president elect last night from the pulpit the Globes gave her, again spot on criticism that was well deserved if you ask me. I'd recommend watching her comments in their entirety and judge for yourselves if she isn't spot on in her take.


Of course this morning, the president elect struck back on his favorite platform, Twitter.

Fasten your seatbelt friends; the next 4 years are gonna be a very bumpy ride.
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So while discussing the odd pledge the Donald has extracted from his blind followers adoring supporters where they were asked to raise their right hands and promise to vote for him in an upcoming primary, the discourse on MSNBC went like this:

Brian Williams: One supporter was seen holding up the right paw of his border collie.

Rachel Maddow: Not a German Shepherd?

Honestly, I find watching these rallies disturbing when Herr Drumpf (the family name Trump's grandfather carried on arrival to the US from Germany), when he calls for a protester or a reporter to be ejected from the rally and supporters physically manhandles the person roughly out the door. It reminds me all too clearly of Hitler's brown shirts.

As much as I dislike the man, I have no love for anyone in the Republican field. I suspect Trump is the Republican with the worst odds winning in November and ultimately I am praying to see The Republican party lose in November. Hopefully to Bernie Sanders, though I could live with Clinton.

Note to all: Go to Louis CK's website and read his letter about Trump. It's scathing.


Nov. 3rd, 2015 09:02 am
osodecanela: (cam capture)

1. (of speech, writing, etc.) high-sounding; high-flown; inflated; pretentious.

syn.: Trump-like

Origin: 1695–1705; bombast + -ic

Mexico is going to pay for a border wall? Really?

You're going to win the Hispanic vote? No one has better relations with the Hispanics than you do? You really do live on Planet Trump, don't you?

First of all, the moment you define any racial/ethnic group with a "the" you imply they're one monolithic group. What you show us is how little you really understand true diversity, or worse, how little the people you're working to appeal to, do. Secondly, governing means building consensus, finding solutions that meet community needs, not actively pushing wedges between communities playing people against one another. Lastly, elections are about meeting societal needs and goals, not entertainment. They're for defining & shaping our future.

Your vision sir, both offends & frightens me.


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