A short video message from Senator Nelson.
A short video message from Senator Nelson.
© Provided by The Hill
More than a dozen lawmakers last month met with a Yale University psychiatry professor for two days to discuss President Trump’s fitness for office, Politico reported Wednesday.
Dr. Bandy X. Lee reportedly met with the group of lawmakers on Dec. 5 and Dec. 6 and warned them the president is “going to unravel.” All of the lawmakers in attendance were Democrats, except for one Republican senator.
“We feel that the rush of tweeting is an indication of his falling apart under stress. Trump is going to get worse and will become uncontainable with the pressures of the presidency,” Lee told Politico.
Lee edited “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump,” a collection released last October of testimonials from more than two dozen psychiatric experts assessing Trump’s mental state.
The White House has in recent weeks brushed aside questions about Trump’s physical and mental fitness.
On Wednesday, a reporter asked Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders if Americans should be “concerned about the president’s mental fitness” after Trump tweeted that he has a “much bigger & more powerful” nuclear launch “button” than North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Sanders said there should be concern over Kim Jong Un’s mental fitness.
Some used Trump’s tweet to renew discussion over the 25th Amendment, which allows for the vice president and the majority of the Cabinet to declare the president “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office” and remove him. It has never been invoked.
In December, Trump appeared to slur his words during a speech announcing the U.S. would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
The White House blamed the issue on a dry throat. Trump is scheduled for his first physical exam as president on Jan. 12. His military physician will make the results public.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said Friday that he believes the recently passed GOP tax bill did too much to help the bottom line of America’s largest corporations.
“I thought we probably went too far on [helping] corporations,” the Florida Republican told the Fort Myers-based News-Press.
“By and large, you’re going to see a lot of these multinationals buy back shares to drive up the price,” Rubio continued. “Some of them will be forced, because they’re sitting on historic levels of cash, to pay out dividends to shareholders. That isn’t going to create dramatic economic growth.”
The bill passed by the Republican-controlled Congress and signed into law by President Donald Trump last week slashed the corporate tax rate from 35 to 21 percent. It also includes a number of provisions that benefit the country’s wealthiest residents rather than the middle-class Americans the GOP has insisted will benefit from the plan, including a cut to the top income tax rate and for pass-through businesses.
The bill will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2018.
Rubio told the News-Press he was unconcerned about polls showing that most Americans disapprove of the legislation, saying the media has unfairly influenced peoples’ opinions and that ultimate perception of the bill will be based on “what their paycheck is telling them.”
The uproar surrounding professional athletes not standing for the National Anthem is a perfectly connived sham. This charade attempts to divert attention from the two main issues that the protest represents. First, the reason for the protest, police brutality, especially the killing of unarmed black men and boys, has been lost in the uproar caused by certain whites. Second, and most important, what underlies this denouncement of the protest is the denial of the full rights of citizenship – which protects that right to protest — to black men. This denunciation is against black athletes only because they are expressing their rights as men and citizens.
Today’s black professional athletes, though paid handsomely in the millions of dollars, play the same role of servant/entertainer as their enslaved forefathers. Blacks were brought to these shores to serve and to be subservient while serving. The entertainment of whites was one of the servant roles that blacks performed. They were required to entertain by singing, dancing the jig, boxing, and jockeying.
Enslaved African were used as competitive boxers; bouts were set with wagers to earn money for owners. During the early years of the 1800s, Tom Molineaux earned his freedom from enslavement by winning large sums of money for his owner. Bill Richard was an African American boxer born enslaved in Virginia, who earned the moniker “The Black Terror.”
Enslaved African Americans were the first jockeys and trainers in horse racing. Horse racing was entertainment for white planters. African American participation in the sport goes back to the colonial period. Both Presidents Washington and Jefferson were racing fans. When President Andrew Jackson moved into the White House in 1829, he brought his black jockeys. African Americans dominated the world of racing until the early 20th century ,when they were pushed out by whites.
When Black Athletes Demonstrate Principled Manhood
As long as black athletes are winning on the field or the court, they are no threat to white supremacy. When black athletes demonstrate that they are principled and passionate men who care about the equal treatment of their people, they are demonized and punished.
Tommy Smith and John Carlos raised black-gloved fists during the playing of the anthem at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City. For this non-violent protest, they paid a huge price. Gold medalist Tommie Smith and bronze medalist John Carlos were suspended from the U.S. Olympic team, stripped of their medals, and subjected to death threats for years. The raising of the fists took precedence over their courageous and principled act demonstrating against the racial discrimination of black people in the United States. The reason for the fist-raising was lost in condemnation of the athletes; even after their winning medals for the United States in their servant/entertainer roles in the Olympics, they were denied the right to express their black manhood in protest of the conditions under which other blacks were forced to live.
When Muhammed Ali refused military induction to fight in Vietnam, he was vilified and accused of being unpatriotic. Ali was stripped of his heavyweight title, convicted of draft evasion, sentenced to five years in prison (later appealed), fined $10 thousand and banned from boxing for three years. Muhammed Ali did not choose to be merely a servant/entertainer but a man who stood firm on his religious principles , like any other conscientious objector.
Young black athletes are learning early that they can win football games for their teams but that they cannot demonstrate their emerging manhood through protest. Cedric Ingram-Lewis and Larry McCullough’s protest against the inhumane treatment of blacks cost them their spots on a Texas high school football team.
Despite Fame and Fortune
What a critically thinking and politically conscious black athlete recognizes is that, despite his wealth, when he is not on the field or the court, he is just another black man who might fall victim to racial terrorism. The vilification of Colin Kaepernick and other NFL players who joined in protest in 2016 and 2017, clearly demonstrates that winning and entertaining do not earn black men the rights of full American citizenship. Sixty-seven percent of NFL players are African American and 74 percent of NBA players. It is unfortunate that these men who play their hearts out to give pleasure to the American public are denied the basic and fundamental right to protest in the way that is most meaningful to them.
It is important to those who question the loyalty and patriotism of black men that these racially motivated individuals consider the demonstration of black manhood in any form is a threat. Those who rant about the protest being disrespectful of veterans could spend as much time memorializing the black veterans who put their lives at risk when they fought for freedom during WWII and returned home only to find that a black man in uniform was an anathema to the racial status quo. In a wave of anti-black violence after the end of WWII, 56 African American men, the majority of those murdered during that reign of terror against blacks, were returning veterans.
It appears that no matter how much they give, how much they play by the rules, how loyal and patriotic they are, how much they serve/entertain, black manhood inspires fear in the hearts and minds of many white Americans. Protest of any sort by black men immediately brings to mind the image of the Brute. How many generations will it take for black men to enjoy the humanity they aspire to and deserve? How many generations until black men are granted the rights of full American citizenship, including the rights guaranteed by the First Amendment?
Martha R. Bireda
Martha R. Bireda’s debut fiction novel, “The Womb Rebellion”, tells the story of gynecological resistance among enslaved women on a southern plantation.
© Provided by The Hill
Nearly one-third of Americans believe President Trump has repealed ObamaCare, according to a new The Economist-YouGov poll.
Last week, Trump claimed the tax bill – which has since been signed into law – “essentially” repeals the Affordable Care Act. The Republican bill to overhaul the tax system eliminates the fine Americans pay for foregoing health insurance, known as the individual mandate.
“When the individual mandate is being repealed, that means ObamaCare is being repealed,” Trump said in a Cabinet meeting at the White House. “We have essentially repealed ObamaCare and we will come up with something much better.”
Despite Trump’s claim, however, the bill doesn’t fully repeal the Affordable Care Act, as other core parts of the law remain intact.
The poll asked survey respondents to answer questions on Trump’s campaign promises, including whether respondents believe Trump has repealed ObamaCare. About 31 percent of those surveyed answered yes, 49 percent said no and 21 percent said they weren’t sure.
More Republicans, 44 percent, believe Trump has repealed ObamaCare, compared to the 27 percent of Democrats and 27 percent of independents who believe he has eliminated President Obama’s signature health-care law.
Nearly 40 percent of Republicans surveyed believe Trump hasn’t repealed ObamaCare, compared to 60 percent of Democrats and 45 percent of independents.
Congressional Republicans tried for months to repeal ObamaCare earlier this year. The House passed a bill in May, but the effort ultimately failed in the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has signaled his chamber will move on to other agenda items next year, particularly highlighting the goal of working across the aisle to fix the nation’s aging infrastructure.
The Economist-YouGov poll surveyed 1,500 people from Dec. 24 to 26, including 1,236 registered voters. Its margin of error is 3 percentage points.
Source: Time Magazine by Tessa Berenson Oct 26, 2017
Each month, Dr. Martha Bireda writes an article for the Wall Street International magazine. This month she has two articles which are well worth your time to read. Click on the link below. Select economy and politics. The first article is entitled “Trump’s Gift to America.” Scrolling down a little further, you’ll see an article she has written entitled “America’s Healthcare Dilemma.”
Martha lives in Punta Gorda and is executive director of the Blanchard House Museum of African-American History.