This relationship is killing us

When we elect a President, we expect him to treat his power with humility and respect.

We expect him to be an American President.

What we have is a selfish gaslighting narcissist whose only obsession is staying in power.

Perhaps Trump saw the demographic of who was dying and decided to use Covid19 to purge voter rolls.

April 7, 2020, According to new data about the scope of the Coronavirus pandemic in the U.S., COVID-19 is hitting Americans of color especially hard. The CDC has not published racial breakdowns of deaths, but some states are — and they show that patients dying of the disease are disproportionately Blacks and Latinos.

We know Trump got a heads up about a spreading pandemic in November 2019.

 

April 8, 2020, ABC reports the National Center for Medical Intelligence warned the military and White House about the spread of the virus in China in November 2019.

 

 

The dire warning about an out-of-control disease sweeping through China was detailed in November in a report by the National Center for Medical Intelligence.

 

The oddest sight of the Trump Pandemic was that of an American President inciting an armed rebellion against doctors and nurses and Governors who were doing their jobs.

April 17, 2020, U.S. President Donald Trump tells protestors to ‘liberate’ three Democratic-run states with stay-at-home orders.

The Death toll from Trump’s neglect was 34,614 on the day of this tweet:

Liberate Minnesota
Liberate Minnesota

The President had not only declined to use his power and resources to stop the spread of a lethal virus; he sabotaged the efforts of State and Local governments by politicizing a matter of science.

So here we are, Monday, June 22, 2020, day 90 or more of quarantine.

June 22, 2020, day 90 or more of quarantine.
On June 22, 2020, day 90 or more of quarantine.

Our President just told us he’s killing us on purpose.


“In a shocking admission during his Tulsa, Oklahoma, rally on Saturday night, President Donald Trump said he had told officials in his administration to slow down coronavirus testing because of the rising number of cases in America.” CNN

It’s not a joke.

The President of the United States intentionally slowed down testing to reduce the numbers to create a false argument to reopen the economy.

We still don’t know who or where the sick are or how many people have died.

The idea that the strong protect the weak is the defining moral premise of who we are as Americans.

If you have a gift, a power, and you can use it to save just one life, you have a moral obligation to use it.

It is a code of honor at the core of our identity as a people.

Photograph of a sign at the 2019 Women's March in San Francisco
The American Mission Statement

Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Emma Lazarus.

Or

“When you can do the things that I can, but you don’t, and then the bad things happen, they happen because of you.” Peter Parker

What does it mean to have an American President who has no sense of common decency?

If I were married to the guy, I’d leave and get a restraining order, but it’s worse: the guy is the President. So I’m more like a hostage of a sadistically abusive Father I didn’t choose and can’t leave. There is nowhere to go to; he’s here, every day, with his racist lies and his threats to incite violence, every day, day, after day, after day.

May 31, 2020

June 22, 2020

Update: from The Lincoln Project

 

Photo of “The American Mission Statement” (c) Rob Goldstein 2020
Photo of ‘You’re on my toe” by Eclaire Banderstatch (c) Rob Goldstein 2020

 

 

Pride 2020: Harvey Milk and the Power of Hope

Imagine you live under a government that says who you are is shameful; you are a crime against nature.

Now imagine the courage it takes to stand up to that government and say, I’m proud of who I am.

Photograph of Havey Milk and his Partner Scott Smith in a plaque on Harvey Milk Plaza
A Photo of Harvey Milk and Scott Smith at Harvey Milk Plaza in San Francisco (C) Rob Goldstein

In 1955, when the Navy forced Harvey Milk to resign over ‘questions’ about his sexual orientation, being a homosexual was the worst thing a person could be.

Homosexuality ranked with pedophilia as equal in the public mind, and sodomy was a crime in most States.

Coming Out was dangerous and revolutionary.

Photo from San Francisco's Pride day 2017
Pride 2017 (C) Rob Goldstein

 “If I turned around every time somebody called me a faggot, I’d be walking backward – and I don’t want to walk backward. -Harvey Milk”

Harvey Milk was born May 22, 1930, in Woodmere, New York, to a family of Jewish Lithuanians.

His father served in the U.S. Navy as did his mother, who served as a “Yeomanette” in  World War I.

“As a youngster, Milk listened with his family to radio reports about the Warsaw Ghetto and the plight of Jews in Europe. There was  anti-semitism closer to home as well — nearby towns on Long Island were strongholds for the Ku Klux Klan and the American Nazi Party.” The Essential Jewishness of Harvey Milk

Copy of a Nazi Soldiers fighting rat like Jews.
Fascist movements always demonize immigrants and minorities.

“Jews know we can’t allow discrimination—if for no other reason than we might be on that list someday.” Harvey Milk

In 1972 Milk moved to San Francisco and ran his first campaign for the Board of Supervisors in 1973; he framed gay liberation as part of a fight for the rights of all people.

According to The Advocate,

“[Milk] molded the gay community into a united voting bloc, and his populist agenda—which attracted straight families, working-class voters, and senior citizens—gave him a powerful base.”

He lost his second campaign in 1975, but he established himself as the leading political spokesman for the gay community with strong political allies and a growing activist base.

When friend and ally, Mayor George Moscone appointed him to the city’s Board of Permit Appeals, he became the first openly gay city commissioner in the United States.

“I know you can’t live on hope alone; but without hope, life is not worth living,” Harvey Milk

A Photo from Pride 2015
A Photo from Pride 2015- (C) Rob Goldstein

Milk won his 1977 campaign, and on January 9, 1978, he took his seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.

Milk was clear about why he ran for office as an openly gay man:

“It’s not my victory; it’s yours and yours and yours. If a gay can win, it means there is hope that the system can work for all minorities if we fight. We’ve given them hope.”

– Harvey Milk, after winning a seat on the Board of Supervisors in 1977.”

Supervisor Milk introduced the Nation’s first bill to outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation. The San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed the bill on March 22, 1978, and Mayor George Moscone signed it into law on April 11, 1978.

Harvey Milk spoke of the value of persisting in the fight to achieve the American ideal of equality:

“…we will not win our rights by staying quietly in our closets. … We are coming out to fight the lies, the myths, the distortions. We are coming out to tell the truths about gays, for I am tired of the conspiracy of silence, so I’m going to talk about it. And I want you to talk about it. You must come out.”  Harvey Milk

 

Art by Rob Goldstein
Forever Queer, Clarion Alley 2012 (c) Rob Goldstein

Harvey Milk served as a supervisor for almost 11 months.

On November 27, 1978, Supervisor Dan White assassinated Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone.

“I can’t forget the looks on faces of people who’ve lost hope. Be they gay, be they seniors, be they blacks looking for an almost-impossible job, be they Latins trying to explain their problems and aspirations in a tongue that’s foreign to them. I personally will never forget that people are more important than buildings. I use the word “I” because I’m proud. I stand here tonight in front of my gay sisters, brothers, and friends because I’m proud of you.” Harvey Milk

Harvey Milk is an American hero because he used his passion and his rights to break through a wall of institutional homophobia and caused the United States to become a more perfect Union.

In 2009 the Nation thanked him for it when President Barack Obama posthumously awarded Milk with America’s highest civilian medal, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, with the following citation:

“Harvey Bernard Milk dedicated his life to shattering boundaries and challenging assumptions. As one of the first openly gay elected officials in this country, he changed the landscape of opportunity for the Nation’s gay community. Throughout his life, he fought discrimination with visionary courage and conviction. Before his tragic death in 1978, he wisely noted, “Hope will never be silent,” and called upon Americans to stay true to the guiding principles of equality and justice for all. Harvey Milk’s voice will forever echo in the hearts of all those who carry forward his timeless message.”

The Obama White House Archives

What you get as a citizen of the United States are the tools you need to petition the government for change. The government may or may not listen to you, and if it doesn’t, you get loud.

Photograph of a sign that reads Silence - Death
Silence = Death 2019 (c) Rob Goldstein
A protest sign at the 2019 Women's March that reads our rights are not up for grabs
Our rights are not up for grabs, and neither are we – 2019,  (c), Rob Goldstein


Harvey Milk got loud, and his faith in the power of hope is still changing our lives.

Rob Goldstein 2020

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Now is the Time We All Need A Great Leader~

‘We need words and acts of wisdom, ethics, and compassion, from our leaders’  Cindy Knoke

We need words and acts of wisdom, ethics and compassion, from our leaders now more than ever. Since this is utterly lacking, take heart from the words of a truly gifted leader that could never be more relevant than today.

Martin Luther King (1929 – 1968) addresses the March On Washington at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington DC, where he gave his ‘I Have A Dream’ speech. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”

“Letter from Birmingham Jail,” April 16, 1963

“Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope.”

“I Have a Dream”, Washington, D.C., August 28, 1963

My heart breaks for George Floyd, his family, and our country. Are we not better people than this?

There are no cheers…

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