How the American Health Care Act (AHCA) Is Bad for People with Disabilities

Alana Theriault from DREDF on Vimeo.

How the American Health Care Act (AHCA) Is Bad for People with Disabilities

Alana Theriault, a friend of mine, explains how the American Health Care Act (AHCA) is bad for people with disabilities and how it endangers our right to live independently in the community.

AHCA poses a huge threat to those of us who are disabled living independently within the community, as is our right. It will either alter or cut valuable funding that we disabled people depend on for our survival. Among the items that will be affected is valuable funding that comes from the federal government to support home care services that we depend on to be able to live independently.

These funds are not only important for our independence, but for our basic survival. Forcing us into institutions will be the only alternative for many people with disabilities. It is a well-known fact that these type of skilled nursing facilities are far more expensive than providing disabled people with the necessary funding to live in the community.

Community-based services are always less expensive for the taxpayers than institutional care. That fact has been proven many times. The AHCA will gut those community-based services to the point of nonexistence. AHCA will force many disabled people, now living independently with the help of community-based services, no other choice than to give up their independent lives and be imprisoned in nursing homes.

The AHCA is the biggest threat to the independent living movement to ever come along. Hopefully, it will not pass through Congress. If it does, we disabled people are doomed.

 

 

 

The Dakota Access Pipeline: Another Case of Environmental Racism

They aren’t done fighting.

Source: Thousands of Dakota Access Pipeline Activists Came to Washington | Mother Jones

The Dakota Access Pipeline: Another Case of Environmental Racism

There is another reason the Dakota Access Pipeline is going through the Standing Rock Reservation instead of going through another more densely populated area.  That reason is something called environmental racism.  It is very clear to me that if the Dakota Access Pipeline were going through a densely populated area occupied mostly by whites, there would be much more an outcry and there is already.

The Dakota Access Pipeline has received a significant amount of media coverage, although most of the best coverage has come from progressive or left-wing media via the Internet, instead of the mainstream media on TV or radio.  As usual, most of the coverage on mainstream media has lacked in the human interest aspect of this entire story and how this pipeline will significantly affect Native Americans.  Of course, ignoring key issues of Native Americans or any other people of power is the usual modus operandi of mainstream media.  It’s unfortunate that the first Americans are slighted this way.

They earned some credit for covering the Dakota Access Pipeline, although that coverage has been very useful for the pipeline.  They have failed to explain why the Dakota Access Pipeline is of such tremendous significance to the people who live there at Standing Rock.  They have also failed to deal with the issue of environmental racism, which I feel is the primary reason the Dakota Access Pipeline receives such lackluster coverage.

The issue of environmental racism is a subject that the mainstream media has always been uncomfortable with, much like every other type of racism.  It has gotten to the point where any talk of about racism of any kind is something mainstream media seems to avoid at any given turn.

I dare say if the Dakota Access Pipeline was going through Bismarck, North Dakota, as was originally intended, this entire story would be covered in a different way.

 

Dakota Access Pipeline | Democracy Now!

HeadlineFeb 16, 2017. Standing Rock Sioux Sue for Halt to Dakota Access Pipeline · H10 vets dapl. HeadlineFeb 13, 2017. Veterans Return to Standing Rock …

 

Singer Grace Slick Is Priceless!

Source: Singer Grace Slick licenses song to Chick-fil-A and then donates money to LGBTQ organization

Singer Grace Slick Is Priceless!

When I first read this, I laugh so hard that I nearly peed my pants.  Grace Slick, former lead singer of The Jefferson Airplane, then Jefferson Starship, licensed a song, “Nothings Gonna Stop Us Now” to Chick-fil-A for a commercial that was used during the Grammy awards.  Then she turns around and donates the money to and LBGTQ rights organization.

In other words, Grace Slick, intentionally allows one of her songs to be used by a corporation whose anti-gay stance is well known, then uses that money against them.  Priceless!  Great slick rules!

To quote Grace Slick;

I firmly believe that men should be able to marry men, and women women. I am passionately against anyone who would try to suppress this basic human right. So my first thought when “Check”-fil-A came to me was, “F**k no!”

But then I decided, “F**k yes.”

So that was my voice you heard on the Chick-fil-A commercial during the Grammy Awards telecast. I am donating every dime that I make from that ad to Lambda Legal, the largest national legal organization working to advance the civil rights of LGBTQ people, and everyone living with HIV. Admittedly it’s not the millions that WinShape has given to organizations that define marriage as heterosexual. But instead of them replacing my song with someone else’s and losing this opportunity to strike back at anti-LGBTQ forces, I decided to spend the cash in direct opposition to “Check”-fil-A’s causes – and to make a public example of them, too. We’re going to take some of their money, and pay it back.

 

Why I Decided To License Starship’s Music To Chick-fil-A

Feb 21, 2017 Musician Grace Slick signs a portrait of herself at a handprint ceremony inducting her into the Hollywood Rock Walk on October 22, 2002.
Jefferson Airplane’s Grace Slick on Aging Rock Stars and Life as a …

Jun 15, 2012 By 1967, restless American youth had found somebody to love in Grace Slick, whose trippy onstage provocations, beautiful looks, and outlier …

 

Betsy DeVos Confirmed, and IDEA Website Crashes.  Just a Coincidence? HMM!

Lawmakers are demanding answers from the U.S. Department of Education after a key government special education website went down.

Source: Senators Want Answers On IDEA Website Outage – Disability Scoop

Betsy DeVos Confirmed, and IDEA Website Crashes.  Just a Coincidence? HMM!

Even before Betsy DeVos was confirmed as Secretary of Education, despite protests from disability rights and education advocates, the link leading to information about the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) mysteriously crashed.  This begs the question, was the crash of this vital link, just a coincidence?  Or, was it a subtle message to the disability community that our needs are going to be giving no priority under the Trump administration?  Unfortunately, I suspect the latter option may be the answer.

One of the main reasons that such stiff opposition met the appointment of Betsy DeVos was that many people are concerned that her knowledge of disability issues, and other matters about public education, were sorely lacking.  When she was questioned during her confirmation hearings about the IDEA, she just drew a blank stare and tried to avoid the question.

It was very apparent to anyone who saw the confirmation hearing that Betsy DeVos was clueless about what the IDEA was, or its significance to people with disabilities.  When she was pressed on the question of the IDEA, Betsy DeVos tried to divert the questionnaire by saying, “these matters are best left to the States.”  This answer was ridiculous!

Anyone who knows anything about the IDEA knows that it was a federal mandate passed in 1974 that guarantees people with disabilities, an equal chance at an equal education.  To me personally, it was one of the primary reasons that I was able to attend college back in Pennsylvania in the late 70s.  She should’ve known that, especially since she is the person who will be in charge of educating this country’s children, even those with disabilities.

Betsy DeVos is nothing more than just another one of Donald Trump’s unqualified members of his cabinet.  She joins the ranks of quite a few others, in this respect.

 

Six astonishing things Betsy DeVos said — and refused to say — at …

Jan 18, 2017 At her contentious confirmation hearing as Donald Trump’s nominee to be education secretary on Tuesday, Betsy DeVos was asked a question …
Betsy DeVos Wants to Use America’s Schools to Build “God’s …

Betsy DeVos Wants to Use America’s Schools to Build “God’s Kingdom”. Trump’s education secretary pick has spent a lifetime working to end public education …

 

 

Kelcy Warren is not Will Rogers, Despite What His Friends Say

The bittersweet ballad of Kelcy Warren.

Source: The billionaire CEO behind the Dakota Access Pipeline would rather be talking about country music

Kelcy Warren Is Not Will Rogers, Despite What His Friends Say

Kelcy WarrenKelcy Warren, founder, and CEO of Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), builder of the infamous Dakota Access Pipeline is not Will Rogers, despite what his friend say.

He is just another wealthy billionaire with too much money and influence.  What he is trying to do to the Standing Rock Sioux is unconscionable and uncaring.  He represents everything that is wrong about the relationship between whites and Native Americans.

Kelcy Warren has used his power and influence to get his way, far too often. He has spent billions of dollars in campaign contributions to some of the lowest of the low, including Rick Perry and present governor of Texas, Greg Abbott.  In fact, he contributed $750,000 to Abbott’s campaign for governor of Texas, and the game nearly $6 million to PACS supporting Rick Perry’s run for president.  Kelcy Warren apparently thinks it’s okay to throw way more money than many small countries just to get his way.  He is the capitalist I hate.

Kelcy Warren displays a split personality or else maybe it would be better called, two-faced.  He denies digging up the bones of ancestors of The Standing Rock Sioux, even though he has done just exactly that.  At some points, he almost seems apologetic to the Standing Rock Sioux, while at the same time continuing to keep on digging the pipeline.

Kelcy Warren has even equated the tribe and its supporters as “terrorists,” even though it’s his people that have attacked these people mercilessly with dogs, tear gas, and clubs.  Even though none of the opponents of the Dakota Access Pipeline has resorted to any violence, other than to raise their hands in self-defense, Kelcy Warren has used his political connections to cause bodily harm to many of these people.

His friends, whether bought or just friends, likes as if he Kelcy Warren has almost some type of “folk hero” just because he writes country music and listen to it.  To depict Kelcy Warren as though he was akin to Will Rogers is a great insult to a great American.  Kelcy Warren is nothing more than just another rich bully tried to have his way and make money, at the expense of Mother Nature.

 

Who is Kelcy Warren, the Texas Billionaire and Folk Music Fan …

Nov 3, 2016 We look at the Texas billionaire behind the Dakota Access pipeline: Kelcy Warren, the CEO of Energy Transfer Partners. Described by …
Dallas’ Kelcy Warren says Dakota Access protesters need the facts …

Nov 11, 2016 Kelcy Warren, CEO of Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners, says he is both confident that his company’s Dakota Access pipeline will be …

 

 

Ban on Muslim Immigration Will Make Americans Less Safe

Ban on Muslim Immigration Will Make Americans Less Safe

On the CBS morning news, former Deputy Director of the CIA, Michael Morrell, says that Donald Trump’s ban on Muslim Immigration to the United States will put Americans in more danger from terrorists than they were before.  He makes some very valid points in this interview.

Mr. Morrell says that none of the terrorist attacks committed on US soil since 9/11, and including the attack on the World Trade Center, would have been addressed by a ban on Muslim Immigration.  He says that none of these attacks would have been stopped if this ban on Muslim Immigration had been in effect at that time.

He says that the ban on Muslim Immigration will be the perfect recruitment tool for Isis, and plays into their hands because it plays perfectly into their narrative about the United States.  Mr. Morrell says that this ban on Muslim Immigration will make Americans less safe than before because it will further inflame radical Islamic extremists and give them some credibility.

Mr. Morrell also says that this ban on Muslim Immigration will not address a serious problem that already exists;  85% of terrorist attacks on Muslim US soil were committed by American citizens.  He says that of nearly 100 people indicted for terrorism by the federal government, 85% were American citizens.  Mr. Morel says that this ban on Muslim Immigration would have no effect on that, and does not address this crucial issue.

During this interview, Mr. Morrell also addresses the appointment of Steve Bannon, White House advisor to Donald Trump, to the National Security Council, something which Mr. Morel considers to be unprecedented. It would stop the Director of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from taking part in security briefings. He points out that this move would bring politics into a situation where it should not exist.

From a personal standpoint, the last thing I want is a white nationalist (a.k.a. white supremacist) be part of the security briefing. This change of protocol puts someone into a power position that should not even be part of the White House staff. Needless to say, Bannon will probably insert the same racist point of view against Muslims into these security briefings, that he did as editor-in-chief of Breitbart.

Bannon’s appointment to such an important position would be at the cost of the participation of the military because he would end the Joint Chiefs of Staff from having input into a situation where military expertise is crucial.  There is no way, members of the Trump administration should have this type of power that is unchecked by the military.

Since it is well-known that Steve Bannon has a racist point of view towards Muslims, he will most certainly tell President Trump that a ban on Muslim Immigration is a good idea, despite the fact that it has just the opposite effect that Donald Trump thinks it will.  Somewhere down the road, I would not be at all surprised if we were to find out that Steve Bannon was one of the chief proponents of the ban on Muslim Immigration to the United States.

At this crucial time, the last person that Trump needs to listen to is a white supremacist who has made no excuses for the fact that he hates Muslims.

 

Experts Say Trump’s Muslim Ban Would Cripple Immigration System …

Aug 3, 2016 Facing a growing backlash over his dispute with the parents of a Muslim American Army captain killed in Iraq in 2004, Donald Trump has …

Many of America’s top CEOs oppose Trump’s ban on Muslim …

12 hours ago President Donald Trump’s ban on Muslim immigration may have been met with protests from some powerful Silicon Valley executives, but by …

 

 

The Ridiculous Idea That Mexico Will Pay for the Wall

The idea that Mexico will pay for the wall on the Mexican border is one of the most ridiculous ideas that I have heard in quite a while.


The Ridiculous Idea That Mexico Will Pay for the Wall

The idea that Mexico will pay for the wall on the Mexican border is one of the ridiculous ideas that I have heard in quite a while. Donald Trump thinks he can force the Mexican people to pay for a wall along the Mexican border. That just goes to show how delusional the new POTUS is. He claims that this will solve the current immigration problem; something which I question is a real issue.

The reason I ask whether or not immigration is a problem is because of the way this country was created, and the way that we have always been taught that America was the “great melting pot.” The United States is made up of immigrants. Most people in this country had their origins in foreign countries. If it weren’t for immigration, we would not exist as a nation. I don’t look at it any differently for Mexican immigrants. They contribute their fair share of work and accomplishments, just like everyone else who is a member of our society.

Donald Trump seems to think that Mexican immigrants are taking away jobs from American workers. From my viewpoint, this is ridiculous and falsehood. Mexican immigrants are just like immigrants from everywhere else. They just want to come here to have a better life, just like my great-grandfather did when he came here from Denmark.

Mexican immigrants, at least from my viewpoint, seems to be doing the jobs that most American workers think they are “too good” to do. These people are the ones who do the farm labor, janitorial work, housekeeping, and childcare for people who work during the day. These types of menial jobs are not very sought after by most American workers.

Trump is just stirring up more trouble and inflaming whatever racist followers that he panders to. After all, he got elected to office because of the appeal to many people’s sense of racism and fear of Mexican immigrants. During his campaign, Trump angrily called Mexican immigrants killers and rapists. This tirade showed his racist feelings against Mexicans and pandered to the lowest common denominator that many people have racism.

The Mexican border won’t be any more secure with a wall built between the United States and Mexico. Also, the idea that Mexico will pay for a wall along the border with the United States is preposterous. What does Donald Trump think he can do to force them to pay? Is he delusional enough to think that he can just send an invoice to the Mexican government and that would just pay up?

 

More Mexicans Leaving Than Coming to the U.S. | Pew Research …

Nov 19, 2015 Between 2009 and 2014, about 140000 more Mexican immigrants have returned to Mexico from the U.S. than have migrated here, citing family …
Donald Trump’s false comments connecting Mexican immigrants …

Jul 8, 2015 Trump can defend his statement all he wants, but the facts are just not there.