President Mike Pence

Mike Pence

PRESIDENT-ELECT DONALD TRUMP will surely get himself impeached after his first year in office by the collective voices of Americans whom he offended—and is still refusing to acknowledge. And by the way, these are not some irrational speculations or some blind reveries by a former Bernie Sanders supporter—and, because of circumstance, became a surreptitious supporter of Hillary Clinton—no, no, no these speculations are real because they were/and are drawn from the many observations of Trump’s discombobulating, political decisions.

Plus, the reason why I believe that President-elect Trump will be impeached, is because there is only so much a well-informed American public can tolerate from someone as controversial as Donald J. Trump, whom, and only less than a month of being elected president, is already flip-flopping on his original stance and promises—promises like building a wall between us and Mexico, getting rid of Obamacare, and appointing a special prosecutor to look into the misuse of Hillary’s emails and the ill-gotten foundation of her and her husband, Bill Clinton. “I don’t want to hurt the Clintons, I really don’t,” Trump said, according to the tweets he tweeted just yesterday. “She went through a lot and suffered greatly in many different ways.”

And when President-elect Trump gets impeached by the people, Vice President Mike Pence will be there waiting to replace him. And although that might not completely be what the people ordered, but, given how the media and some traditional republicans were/are currently favoring Mike Pence over Donald Trump, I believe, at least in the meantime, that they will be contented with such a drastic outcome.

Traditional Republicans and their traditional supporters—-and even some of us on the left—-have long considered Mike Pence to be the “Intellectual,” reasonable, and calmer politician around Donald Trump’s team. And for some strange and unknown reason, we think that Mike Pence would have been a better president-elect than Donald Trump. In fact, as I write this, there’s a push and etherization by some people suggesting that Pence should run for president in 2020. But before we imagine what a Pence presidency would look like, can we ask ourselves; who really is Mike Pence? What are some of his policies, political history, and connections? And can he really be trusted, if and when, he becomes the true 45th president of the United States—-in the event that Trump is impeached, of course, or, in 2020 when he runs for president?

Until he was tapped on the shoulder to be the running mate of Donald Trump, Mike Pence was a governor in Indiana—and a very unpopular one. As governor, he signed into law one of the most controversial bills that the state of Indian had ever seen—-a bill that, according to tourism officials, may have just costed the city of Indianapolis as much as $60 million in lost revenue; The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which essentially, granted corporations the right to deny public accommodations to representatives of the LGBTQ community.

Although that bill sort of blindsided and angered many citizens and some local businesses of Indiana when it was enacted just last year, I feel that the public shouldn’t have been too discombobulated because, back in the year 2000 I found that Mike Pence was on record saying that, “Congress should oppose any effort to recognize homosexual’s as a ‘discreet and insular minority’ entitled to the protection of anti-discrimination laws similar to those extended to women and ethnic minorities.” And if that wasn’t enough, he also suggested that “An audit,” should be done, “To ensure that federal dollars were no longer being given to organizations that celebrate[d] and encourage[d] the types of behaviors that facilitate[d] the spreading of the HIV virus.”

Insofar, his Anti-LGBTQ legislations, theocratic beliefs, and his unfavorability amongst his own citizens in Indiana is the report card of our Vice president Mike Pence. And just from that alone, I am curious to know; where exactly did we, the American people, get the impression that Mike Pence was “intellectual” and reasonable to begin with? At least with Trump we can paint our political reveries on his blank and constantly changing political canvas, but with Mike Pence, however, we would be screwed because he’s too rigid and set in his ways. In regards to Mike Pence being too monolithic and questionable, I sincerely think the reason why some people may favor Pence’s percieved calmness, cordiality and reasonable gesticulations is because when we look at Trump we see someone who is the complete opposite; brash, loud and braggadocious.

Another key factor for us who may think that Mike Pence would be a better presidential candidate to keep in mind, is that while he was still the governor of Indiana, our Vice President Mike Pence was/and is on record supporting the privatization of public schools—-he helped to relocate more than $50 million dollars from public schools into private charter schools, and, he also tried to sign into law an Anti-abortion bill that would have prevented abortions even in the cases of severe genetic deformities; and, required that the medical waste from those abortions be buried in a cemetery or cremated like a human body. But thankfully, and after months of feverish protest, a federal judge struck down that bill.

In addition to those things, our vice President Mike Pence supports the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal, has ties with members of the ‘Alt-right’ group—-a loose group of people with far right ideologies who reject mainstream conservatism—-and supports the ban on immigrants from Muslims countries. In fact, and as we speak, his team; Reince Priebus, General Mike Flynn, Stephen Bannon, Carl Higbie, Kansas Secretary of State, Kris Kobach, etc., are in favor of creating a registry of immigrants who come to the US from Muslim countries—-unflinchingly aware of the fact that not only was it one of the worst and grotesque human violations in American history, but that was how we were able to force a lot of Japanese Americans into concentrations camps during World World II. Those were only a few of the things that I managed to discover about our Vice President Mike Pence, but given how lengthy and revolting those things were, I wonder what other skeletons does he have in his closet—-skeletons that would demonstrate that he is and will not be fit to be our next and true Commander and Cheif?

I understand the eagerness and credulity that many Americans may have towards Mike Pence, especially in such politically confusing and dramatic times—-heck, I still think that Bernie will somehow come back to win the presidency and some people, like many computer scientists and election lawyers, want Hillary to challenge the election results because they believe that she can still win—-but, still, it is important for us to not rescue ourselves from any logical inquiries into the type of presidency that Mike Pence would offer us when Donald Trump is impeached. Mike Pence, when he becomes our true 45th president, will, and from the few things that I’ve discovered about him, not be a progressive and reasonable president that we, the people, are hoping for him to someday be.

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To Vote, or Not to Vote

ken-boneTO VOTE, OR NOT TO VOTE, THAT IS THE QUESTION……a lot of us are asking ourselves before election day. And like the play Hamlet, whose main character struggled with tough decisions, we too, are struggling to decided who should lead our great country for the next four years to come. Before I carry on any further with this article, it is important that I emphasize to the reader that I am categorically aware of the many anachronisms that exist in making the comparison between the play Hamlet and the current political situation that many of us find ourselves in today. Moreover, my intentions for summoning such a wonderful and complicated play was, to simply just focus on how we, the voters, and young Hamlet, were/are presented with tough decisions that, within them, contains a multiplicity of solutions.

And who is this “we” that I speak of? Well, majority of us are small business owners, college students, and non-profit workers.  And according to an analysis from U.S. census data from the Pew Research Center, we are around age eighteen to thirty-five and we’re now the largest political force in America. That is f*cking huge!….but at the same time it might not be a good kind of huge because we’re also classified as “undecided voters” and undecided voters do not vote.

It is no surprise that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are the most despised candidates in the history of American politics. And rightfully so; one is a two-faced technocrat who speaks in the feel-your-pain language of the working-poor but yet possess no policy to address their unique quagmires. And the second one is an orange-talking STD who think it’s ethical and morally right to disparage women and deport the children of eleven million immigrants back to Mexico. But yet, some like Bernie Sanders, President Barrack Obama, Celebrities, ect, think we should not only still vote, but vote for Hillary Clinton—-because she’s the more reasonable one. “This is not the time for a protest vote, in terms of a presidential campaign,” Sanders once said. “I ran as a third-party candidate. I’m the longest-serving independent in the history of the United States Congress. I know more about third-party politics than anyone else in the Congress, okay?…..This is the time to elect Hillary Clinton and then work after the election to mobilize millions of people to make sure she can be the most progressive president she can be.”

If Bernie doesn’t think that this is the time to do a protest vote, then, I wonder, when does he think that perfect time will come? And I know Bernie means well, but I’m a little confused to why he would suggest that somehow electing Hillary will change the politics of “business as usual?” For those who have yet to drink the Hillary Kool-aid, this is the perfect time to protest vote. We have too many issues on the line that are slated to not only affect a few of us but all Americans. Issues like Climate Change, Black Lives Matter, Immigration, Terrorism (foreign and domestic), etc, and what we’re looking for is someone who has the conscious to really do right by these issues. And unfortunately, as we survey the political landscape, we see that neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump are fit for the job. Yet despite that, some people are still bent on selecting Hillary; “It’s not that she’s the *lesser* evil, though she is;” said Jesse Myerson, a New York-based activist, and writer, “It’s that she’s the *more strategically useful* evil.” Be that as it may, what people just aren’t getting is that Americans are tired of the politics of lesser evilism. Yes, we are aware that Hillary is the better option but we don’t want her. That is why majority of us are planning on sitting this one out.

But what if, instead of not voting, we actually do vote but do it in a democratically progressive way? What I am going to suggest is not new but, if done right, can dramatically swing the election to such an extent that it actually might start to work in our favor. One of the benefits of being in a democratic society is, that, voters are equipped with a kind of endless political repertoire, that enables them to not only be heard in many different ways, but to also shape and mold the society in the way that they think is fair and equal to everyone. And one such way that we can make our political landscape more fairer is the exercise of our spoilt vote.

The spoilt vote is when a voter intentionally either does three things to his/her ballot—-one; not voting at all, two; voting for more than one candidate, and three; damaging the ballot so that it cannot be counted by a machine. And what’s so interesting about the spoilt vote is that if enough people do it; not only will it be counted as a form of voting, but the media, the public, and the two dominant parties will eventually demand to know why we decided to spoilt our votes. And the moment when they decide to know why, will not only be the most important moment to us voters, but it will also be the most important moment to society and to the name of democracy. Real change, I believe, can only come when we are strategic with our voting power—-not wasting it by being passive and apathetic.

If you’re considering spoilting your vote, it is important that you are consistent and intentful. Simply marking your ballot blank or damaging your ballot while thousands of other people are doing something totally different is not an effective strategy. To demonstrate the importance of unity and consistency, allow me to draw your attention to exhibit A; the United Kindom. Back in two-thousand-and-ten, they had three candidates running to be the next prime minister; David Cameron, Gordon Brown, and Nick Clegg. But the majority of the voters did not like those candidates so over two-hundred-and-ninety-five-thousand people spoilted their votes while sixteen million people did not vote at all. And what do you think happened? Although he resigned back in July after the UK decided to leave the European Union, David Cameron ended up winning the general election.

The moral of the story is that what we all must do is vote in the same way. Everyone has to decide to vote blank or write in “all the above” in order for our spoilt votes to be legitimately recognized. We cannot have one group spoilting and the other group not voting at all. If we do not unite come election day, we can kiss our chances of creating some kind of meaningful change, goodbye. And by the way, the spoilt vote should not be confused with protest voting or absentee voting. Because of the fact that a protest vote, although similar in nature, breeds what writer Edgar Allan Poe called a “Settled apathy,” or an indifference towards politics in general. And the absentee vote, again, similar on the surface, but yet below the surface, is insanely ineffective and completely misdirectional. Spoilt voting—-that is if everyone spoilts their votes in the same fashion—-is dramatically different because we’re still exercising our rights to vote but with purpose and focus.

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Trumplicans

trumplicans

VERY RECENTLY IN NORTH CAROLINA, a Donald Trump supporter was spotted at a rally waving around a Hillary Clinton doll that had a noose tied around its neck. When confronted by a reasonable reporter who was curious to know why she was displaying such an effigy; the passionate Trump supporter responded, “it’s just for effect.” But is it, though? I highly doubt it. And although such a display was brushed off as something harmless on the surface by the reporter, however, I feel that below all of that something more problematic may be at play, here.

From the very beginning, Donald Trump has been dog-whistling, hashtag’n, and baiting his more passionate supporters with evocative memes, to do something about Hillary Clinton and the “rigged” system. Back in August Trump said at a rally that “Hillary wants to abolish — essentially abolish — the second amendment,” by stacking the Supreme Court with pro-gun reform justices—-and that, if she won, there would be nothing they could do about it; except…“Although the second amendment people, maybe there is, I don’t know,” he added, to a few cheers from the crowd. On the surface, many people brushed it off as something harmless, but to the people that were/and are “woke,” we saw it as a “Wink Wink” to any would-be assassin of Hillary Clinton. From then to now, I think we have missed our chance to do something about the cataclysmic rhetoric of Donald Trump. In this present moment, I feel that Trump’s problematic consistency has evolved into something so uncontrollable; where now it’s okay to go to a rally with an effigy that has a noose around its neck and not think that its problematic or that such an image may provoke some kind of hostility towards the most vulnerable members of our society.

History shows us that before you can wipe out a group of people deemed socially deposable, or, before you can harm someone without opposition nor social backlash, you have to first create the right volatile atmosphere that is conducive to hate, apathy, and violence. It is no stretch of the imagine when I say that Donald Trump has created such an atmosphere.

Ever since the last presidential debate, where Donald Trump essentially handed Hillary a secured lead with his “I’ll keep you in suspense” remark—–and, depending on what national poll you look at, Donald Trump has been steadily trailing Hillary Clinton by nine to ten points. And specifically, in the battleground states, like Georgia, Iowa, Virgina, North Carolina, ect., Hillary Clinton is leading Donald Trump; forty-seven percent to Trump’s forty-three percent. Naturally, a lot of his supporters are very upset by this. Like Trump, they believe that not only is the entire political apparatus “rigged,” but, specifically, they also believe that the process of voting is “rigged” as well—-and more importantly, that Hillary is just too much of a liar to ever be granted a chance to be elected as president of the United States.

Although Hillary may be a liar, according to many Trumplicans, I’m sure that they are aware that Trump is far worse than she is, right? I mean, how can you defend or support someone who thinks it’s okay to grab women “by the pussy” solely because he is famous? Or, even better; how can you defend or support someone who’s domestic policy is to deport the children of immigrants—-children, who, due to the 14th amendment back in 1868, which constitutionally recognized the children of immigrants as “birthright citizens,” has more right to be here like anyone else? However ridiculous that may sound to people of decency and compassion, I think one of the reasons why Trumplicans are supporting Donald Trump so passionately, is because they feel like they are becoming a minority. And there is some truth to that. According to the projections from the U.S. census Bureau, in two-thousand-and-fifty minorities (people of color) will be the majority. In that context then, it’s not hard to see why they want Trump to win so badly—-because they see it as their last hope to maintain their identity before it is stripped from them through the natural processes of multiculturalism. Trump, they believe, will reverse multiculturalism and forever keep the white race sacred and at the top of the racial hierarchy. All jokes aside, that aforementioned reverie is so strong that a lot of Trumplicans are willing to do whatever it takes to make it a reality.

For those passionate majority, being ready and prepared to do whatever it takes to prevent the “rigged” system from selecting Hillary Clinton as the next president of the United States, is a very/and extremely important thing. In fact, so important, that some of them, has vowed to even carry their guns to some voting places to prevent “voter fraud” and dead-voting. Yes, you heard right; they also believe, after hearing it from Donald Trump, of course, that the deceased are voting, too. If only Trump would have told them the honest truth that, yes,”dead people” may be, indeed, registered to vote but they are certainly not going to be alive to cast their ballot(s) on November eighth—-I think that that would have caused them to change their minds about bringing their firearms to the voting booths.

It’s one thing to believe that the system is “rigged” and that “dead people” are committing voter fraud, but it’s another thing to actually act on that belief with no facts to back it up. According to Lorraine Minnite, a political science professor at Rutgers University-Camden who wrote a book entitled “The myth of the voter Fraud” back in two-thousand-and-ten; “Voter fraud remains rare because it is irrational behavior. You’re not likely to change the outcome of an election with your illegal fraudulent vote because the chances of being caught are there and we have rules to prevent against it.”

Despite that fact, which Trump supporters seem to ignore so professorially, some of them are still passionate about doing all it takes to prevent Hillary from becoming the next president of the United States. From boldly displaying offensive and racially-coded effigies, to vowing to monitor voting places with their guns, I think as we gradually approach election day, which is only eleven days away, we will see more Trumplicans displaying anger and frustration of the “rigged” system. And because we missed our opportunity to nullify such displays in the past, the best thing we can do when it happens is to show them, love. #LoveTrumpshate

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