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Yesterday, 2/24/17, the government itself, specifically the Trump Administration, attacked the First Amendment, which includes our right to freedom of expression, most commonly referred to as freedom of speech, press, religion, assembly, and petition.
So, immediately, that’s a lot of information. Let me break it down for you simply. (Source for this section, here.)
Under the First Amendment, you are given the right to freedom of:
- Expression, AKA Freedom of Speech: “The right to freedom of speech allows individuals to express themselves without interference or constraint by the government.”
- Possible prohibitions: “speech that may cause a breach of the peace or cause violence”
- Press: The allowance of “an individual to express themselves through publication and dissemination”. (Note: this does fall under freedom of expression.)
- Religion: This is a two-parter: establishment and free exercise.
- Establishment: “The establishment clause prohibits the government from passing legislation to establish an official religion or preferring one religion over another. It enforces the “separation of church and state.” (This is important; I’ll be coming back to this in a later post.)”
- Free Exercise: “The free exercise clause prohibits the government, in most instances, from interfering with a person’s practice of their religion.”
- Assembly: “The right to assemble allows people to gather for peaceful and lawful purposes. Implicit within this right is the right to association and belief.”
- Protesting, put simply. (There is a clear difference between protesting and rioting.)
- Also could possibly be interpreted from this is your right to go to church. (While also protected by the Free Exercise clause, this reinforces those protections.)
- Petition: “The right to petition the government for a redress of grievances guarantees people the right to ask the government to provide relief for a wrong through the courts (litigation) or other governmental action.”
- This reinforces the right of assembly.
Okay, so you got all that? It’s very simple. I’ll sum it up for you further:
The First Amendment is where the bulk of your freedoms come from. It is the basic ideology of the United States of America.
There is a reason why it is the First Amendment and not the Second.
The First Amendment gives you your freedoms in America.
The Second Amendment gives you the capabilities to protect those freedoms.
Understand? It’s all really simple. Just go read the last five lines before this one, as many times as you need. It’s very important to understand what your rights are and where they come from. Take your time.
Understand this clearly: without the First Amendment, you do not have any true rights. You have the idea and illusion of rights.
Read those last two sentences again. Read them until you know every word by heart. Read them until you fully understand them. Get them tattooed on your arm if you have to.
Now, do you remember what I opened this with?
Yesterday, 2/24/17, the government itself, specifically the Trump Administration, attacked the First Amendment, (…)
Do you feel that chill in your spine? That sense of impending doom? That terrifying moment that shifts your entire world?
Good. That’s what you should feel.
“They say that we can’t criticize their dishonest coverage because of the First Amendment, you know, they always bring up the First Amendment.”
Those are the words of the Commander-In-Chief himself.
“But he’s not the government or his administration.”
To quote CIC himself and put it simply: Wrong.
The President is the government; he is his administration. He is not just one person any longer; he ceased to be a single person when he took that oath of office on January 20th, 2017. At the moment he said those words, he became an entity, an idea. He became the face of the government itself.
His very words are policy. His actions are government actions. They are actions on behalf of the United States, and it’s citizens.
The world does not consist of only the USA. The entire world is watching us. They are watching the words and actions of our government, and they are scared.
The entire world thinks us a laughingstock, but that does not mean that they are not taking us seriously.
The world knows what we can do, what we have done, and they see what we just did, what we are doing, and they are terrified.
The United States has long since been held in people’s minds as the place to go when you’re in trouble, when you want a better life; this is, in part, due to how we’ve held ourselves in high regard and treated our fellow humans in times of need.
They see us imploding; they see our rights slowly being eroded away.
They see our supposed leader disregarding our Constitution, our laws, our ideology, and they are wondering what will happen in their country.
If we, the supposed “greatest nation on Earth”, has this happening to it, what does that mean for their nations? If we go the way of Nazi Germany, Soviet Russia, or any of the other infamous examples of toppled governments, what’s to stop them from following in our lead, as so many countries do on a myriad of issues?
Yes. We should be scared with our rights, our freedoms, being stripped away, but not just for ourselves.
We are standing on a precipice of history, a knife’s edge. How we uphold ourselves, and, indeed, our government, will shape the entire future of the world.
Are you ready?
So, one of the things that I learned in my conservative-teacher-taught government class is that, when you vote, when you cast that ballot, you are not only potentially putting a person in power, but you are giving your consent for them to do everything they said they would.
Think about that for a moment.
You, in putting a check on a piece of paper (or an electric voting machine), are giving someone power; you are saying that person represents you.
No matter what you and that person may disagree on, you have said that what they stand for is the same thing as what you stand for.
If, at any point, that representative begins to not be representative of you or your values, it is your right, it is your duty, to stand up and speak out against it, if not for your sense of responsibility, for the others that are being affected.
The people who that person you helped elect is going against, those that you consider family, friends, coworkers, etc., they’re all waiting to see what you’re going to do now. Are you going to stand by and allow them to be hurt and affected? Or are you going to stand up and fight, not only for them, but for everyone that’s been affected?
By staying silent, you are, by merit of inaction, giving your continued consent, no matter how much you may disagree with that person after the fact.
In doing so, you are, in effect, allowing the continued compromises; worse, you’re saying you agree.
If you vote, for anyone, and you are unwilling to face the consequences of that vote, the people who your vote has affected in a negative way, you. should. not. vote.
A vote is not an opinion. A vote is an action.
An opinion is something that does not negatively affect anyone in a substantial way.
An opinion is what kind of food you like, or what you thought of that TV show last night.
An action is something that does something to the world that may or may not affect other people.
An action is putting an effort to do something.
A vote is not an opinion; it is an action.
If you are unwilling to deal with the consequences of your actions, you shouldn’t be doing it, especially if it will affect other people.
Feminism has a sort of stigma attached to it, wrongfully so, I believe.
Some people argue that there are different types of feminism, and, while they’re free to do so, I don’t buy into this and I never have.
Feminism is really very simple: women are equal to men. Full stop.
This means all women.
White women; women of color; women of faith, including, but not limited to: Muslim women, Christian women, Pagan women; women of no faith; young women; old women; trans women. All women.
It’s not that hard to understand.
Some people would say that what I am is an intersectional feminist, because I include all women in my feminism. While that may be true, given our society and tendency to label everything
to death, I reject this notion.
Feminism is a part of equality, one that specifically places focus on women, because women, in our current society, are not equal.
Equality is the belief that all people, men and women, are equal, no matter what.
I have always, since I knew what feminism meant, considered myself a feminist. How could I not? It’s so obvious to me that women are equal to men.
The question isn’t, “Why are you a feminist?”
The question is: Why aren’t you?
Dear Mrs. DeVos,
So, I’ve been maintaining a political twitter account, @PoliticallyRepK, since, I believe, November.
I had, during the 2012 election season, created this account, and subsequently abandoned it.
However, given the current political climate in the
United States, I’ve breathed life back into it.
But…sometimes, Twitter isn’t the best place for my thoughts. Sometimes, my thoughts are very long-winded, thought out, etc. so on and so forth, and can’t be contained to just 140 characters.
So…here we are.
Welcome to Politically Rep K, the blog.
[This post is a direct copy of a post I made on my personal Facebook regarding this article.]
This is incredibly telling on how people ACTUALLY feel about the Affordable Care Act.
If you’re against the ACA, why?
Is it because your premiums have gone up?
That’s not the ACA, that’s the insurance companies. Obama and the Dems HAD to take out provisions they had in the Act that would PREVENT insurance companies from raising premiums in order to even get the ACA viewed by Congress.
Why is that?
Because the Republicans refused to even bring it to the floor without that. Because the Republicans care about money above all else. They don’t care about you or me; they care about their donors.
Now, are the Democrats perfect in this regard?
Absolutely NOT, but they’re BETTER.
The same problem regarding corporate corruption is present in the Dems as in the Republicans, but it’s nowhere NEAR as rampant or common. Not to mention, the Democrats actually want to make things BETTER for people, as a majority.
(Side note: if you come at me with “the lesser of two evils is still evil”…WTF are you even saying? So, because we can’t get PERFECT, we shouldn’t try for BEST WE CAN? Yeah…no. You’re a shitty human being if you can’t understand that.)
Are you against the ACA because you own a small business and can’t expand while also providing your employees health insurance?
Well…you have a point; I’m sorry, but that’s too bad. Wait for a while and THEN expand. Treat people like humans.
You don’t WANT to wait to expand?
Well…you’re kind of a greedy asshole and a shitty human being.
That’s kind of YOUR problem, not your employees’. You should work on that and try being a better person.
NOW! There’s a really simple solution to this: ‘free’ healthcare for everyone.
“But who’s going to pay for it?!”
Uh…everyone. We’re all going to pay for it. Just like Social Security. It would be an added tax.
BUT BEFORE YOU GET ALL UP IN ARMS ABOUT IT BEING A ‘TAX’:
It would TECHNICALLY be a tax, but, if you look at it another way: it’s one less bill you have to keep track of each month that you would have been paying anyway.
“But what if something happens and I can’t afford [insert]?!”
That’s the point: you WILL be able to afford it. Because you HAVE insurance that FUNCTIONS in practice, not just in theory.
“But some people are sicker/get hurt/etc. and I don’t! I don’t want to pay for them!”
Well…again, you’re kind of a shitty human being and you should get that checked out, but let me explain how it could work.
So, yes, obviously there are some people who have more medical necessities than you may or may not have; and, yes, technically, you WOULD be contributing to their healthcare; BUT, they’re also contributing to YOUR healthcare. It’s all coming from the same place. NO ONE will be without health insurance or be unable to go to the doctor when they need to. INCLUDING YOU!
That’s how this WORKS!! We ALL help each other because WE’RE ALL HUMAN.
Back to the money issue, in order to keep health premiums down, the tax/bill, it would come with a provision that would get rid of tax cuts for the richest people in the country; the people who make millions.
“But that’s taking their money away!!”
No; it’s not. It’s taking the money they SHOULD HAVE been paying in TAXES to begin with, that they WEREN’T, and making them PAY THOSE TAXES.
Now, listen here: these people, the richest of the rich, DO NOT have to pay taxes past a certain point, simply because they make X amount of money.
EVERYONE ELSE, you, me, that person that you don’t like, ALL pay a percentage of taxes.
We get some of it BACK; some each year, such as income tax, and some when we retire, which is Social Security (which, by the way, is THE most popular program that the US has SINCE ITS INCEPTION).
These people, again, the richest of the rich, DON’T HAVE to pay that same percentage. They get CUTS to their taxes, the rate they pay, simply because they. make. more. money.
How is that fair? That’s why our deficit (spending) and debt is so high! We’re, essentially, PAYING for them to MAKE MORE MONEY without getting anything back.
Republicans try to disguise this under the issue of “job creation”, stating that these people, with these tax cuts, will hire more people to work. Only…that’s not true. At all.
These people take this money that they SHOULD HAVE paid in taxes and KEEP it, NOT hire more workers. Then, they turn around and FUND those same Republicans (and Corporate Democrats) to keep them in office so that they can KEEP those tax cuts and even GET MORE TAX CUTS.
Our entire system is corrupt.
[EDIT: I forgot to include this comment that I’d put in the FB post after sharing it.]
DT, the 45th, is the EPITOME, the very ESSENCE, of that corruption. And so many people fell for it because “he says what’s on his mind”.
NO! He said WHAT YOU WANT TO HEAR.
He exhibited overt racism (“They [Mexican immigrants] are, in many cases, criminals, drug dealers, rapists, etc.”), sexism (<NOTE: THIS IS SEXUAL ASSAULT “I better use some Tic Tacs just in case I start kissing her. You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful… I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything. […] Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”> Another: “You have to treat ’em [women] like shit.”), torture (“If it doesn’t work, they [military captives] deserve it anyway.”), and so, SO much more, I can’t even list it all; I’d be here forever.