Sunday, June 22, 2014

Freedom? Or Left Wing Thuggery?

* The US Patent and Trademark Office decided the Washington Redskins name was too offensive to allow them to continue with their decades old trademark. Never mind the potential impact on a multi-billion dollar business. Never mind that one should be able to name their business as they see fit. And never mind that it is a small minority of people who claim offense at the Redskins name.

* Here's an idea. Let's ban any use of the word "Indian" or related names. Let's say goodby to the Cleveland Indians, Atlanta Braves, Kansas City Chiefs, Florida State Seminoles, and on and on. The Cleveland Browns? That must be racist. All the teams and schools with "warrior" in their names. Even if not connected to an Indian logo, "warrior" must be offensive to any number of the anti-war crowd. In speaking with a liberal friend he indicated that the Redskins issue was of no concern to him. As Dennis Prager says, liberty is a non-issue for the left. Rather, they care about equality (and abortion and gay marriage, of course).

* But the anti-free speech crowd (aka the Democrat party) has a much bigger goal: the First Amendment to the US Constitution. Recall Obama criticizing the Supreme Court at his State of the Union Speech in 2010 for their Citizens United decision? That decision allowed unlimited expenditure of money for campaign ads as long as there was no coordination with any candidate for political office. It should be obvious that having money allows one to get their message (you know, speech) out to a large audience. The Dems also argued that corporations have no speech rights. Tell that to the NY Times, LA Times, NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox and numerous other corporate entities whose business is, well, speech.

* The Dems believe that Congress (a group that I would always trust with protecting my liberty) should have the power to regulate "the raising and spending of money and in-kind equivalents with respect to federal elections." (Information from a Wall Street Journal article by Senator Ted Cruz, 6/2/14.) If you think that amending the First Amendment is a non-issue, or will have no impact on you, think again. During the oral argument at the Supreme Court on the Citizens United case, the Obama Administration contended that the government could ban books containing political speech. Books, people!

* But who needs the Constitution or the First Amendment. That document is so old. We need a "living, breathing" Constitution, because today's politicians are so much wiser than the Founding Fathers. Right?

* Think students should have the right to hear various political viewpoints? Not in Woodbury, Connecticut. One student was preparing for a discussion or paper on gun control. Using a computer in his high school he had no problem getting access to anti-gun and anti-Second Amendment sites. Surprise! No access to the NRA site. Democrat Party site? No problem. Republican Party? Surprise again! No access. The best? No problem getting access to But or the Vatican's web site? You're not still surprised, are you?

* I'm sure this lack of access to conservative sites was a pure coincidence, or maybe an accident. Just like the IRS losing 7 hard drives with 2 years worth of emails just when the agency was targeting Tea Party groups and other conservatives. (But I digress, and that's a subject for another post.)

Whither the Jews?

* At the onset of the Great War (1914) the Jewish population of Europe was estimated to be about 10.5 million people. Currently, there are about 1.5 million Jews in Europe. (Statistics from the 6/6-6/12/14 Jewish Journal article by Rabbi Abraham Cooper and Harold Brackman.) Obviously, the Jewish population was decimated by the Holocaust. With the existence of the State of Israel, many Jews chose to relocate to the historic homeland of the Jewish people. And an increasing number are leaving Europe as anti-Semitism has been on the rise.

* European anti-Semitism has increasingly been a result of the growing Muslim population of Europe. At the end of May, a Muslim man was arrested for the killing of three people at the Jewish Museum in Brussels. He was born in France and fought with the "rebels" in Syria, before committing his murders. Recall that two years ago another Muslim man murdered three Jewish children and a Rabbi and three soldiers outside a French Jewish school. Jews in France are warned not to have identifying symbols on the outside of their synogogues and to remove their kippahs (skull caps) before leaving their temple.

* Also of great concern is the rising political influence of far right-wing parties with a past history of anti-Semitism. These parties are likely to get an increasing number of seats in the European Parliament.

* As the left joins with the Muslims in the effort to delegitimize Israel, anti-Semitism has been disguised as just being anti-Israel and anti-Israeli policies. When the tiny country of Israel is singled out by the BDS (boycott, divest and sanction) crowd it is due to Jew hatred. In the USA we have seen Israel singled out by an ex-President, Jimmy Carter, in his book "Palestine: Peace not Apartheid," and in the book "The Israel Lobby," by Professors Walt and Mearsheimer. Now, the Presbyterian Church, USA has voted to join the BDS movement. The Church will be divesting from Caterpillar, Motorola and Hewlitt-Packard because of those companies participation in the "occupation" and, among other things, helping to build the security barrier that protects Israelis from being murdered by terrorists. (One wonders what the Church's stance is on Syria, Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt or Libya, to name a few; or what the Church has had to say about the displacement of about one million Christians from the Arab world.)

* Meanwhile, three Israeli teens (Naftali Frenkel, Gilad Shaar and Eyal Yifrach) were kidnapped over a week ago, with Israel claiming the kidnappers were from Hamas, still designated a terrorist organization by the USA. However, Obama has seen fit to continue US aid of $500,000,000. per year to the Palestinian Authority - even though they recently entered into a unity government with Hamas. On the PA's official site is a cartoon of the three teens pictured as mice on the hooks of a fishing rod. (From David Suissa in the 6/20-6/26/14 Jewish Journal.) Recall Obama saying "If I had a son he'd look like Trayvon." And Obama saying he wishes he could "reach out and save those kids" with regards to the girls kidnapped in Nigeria and children suffering in Syria's civil war. But the three Israeli teens? Apparently it does not matter to Obama that one (Naftali Frenkel) also holds dual American citizenship. But Frenkel is neither black nor a Muslim, so...

* Jews in the USA do not always appreciate just how blessed we are to live in this great country. Israel is surrounded by enemies who seek her destruction. European Jews face an ever increasing and violent anti-Semitism. The vast majority of the Jewish world (less than 14 million people worldwide) currently resides in only two countries - Israel and the USA. And what will be when the Muslim population of this country continues to grow? How many will attend mosques with radical imams? How many will identify with the ever increasing number of Islamic terrorist groups worldwide? Is it possible that Israel, notwithstanding the dangerous neighborhood that surrounds it, will become the only safe haven for worldwide Jewry?