Feel the Bern: Capitalism v. Socialism

Bernie Sanders is the answer that both establishment Republicans and Democrats fear. During this primary season, Bernie has been winning. Most recently, he took Nevada with nearly 50 percent of voters choosing him. Still, with his so-called “socialist” views, his critics accuse of him of wanting to rob the hard working rich and give their wealth to the lazy poor. Donald Trump believes he could crush Bernie, and this is why Trump has been congratulating Bernie on winning primaries.

Donald Trump is a frustrating conundrum. Somehow, he has managed to gain the support of the poor and uneducated — even though his policies like his Tax Act make them poorer — and the wealthy who remain in his corner. When Trump’s voters who happen to be poor or uneducated see Trump, they see a man who is defiant, rude, unapologetic and bold. To them, he is “real.” In their eyes, Trump can do no wrong.

Poor, uneducated people can be taken advantage of, and Trump is doing exactly that. Trump is betting poor people fear the world Bernie wants in which every person gets what he or she deserves. The reason is, poor, uneducated people tend to vote against their own interests. Without doing proper research and reading about candidates’ ideals, poor, uneducated people who take time to vote are like a godsend to someone like Trump, who operates by telling lie after lie, because he knows his voters will eat it up without questioning him.

Bernie Sanders is the answer. Though he is a politician, he is as far removed from Corporate America as any candidate could be. He is not perfect, but he knows unchecked capitalism will eventually collapse this country and those at the bottom will suffer the greatest. Capitalism does not work for everyone. Bernie knows this, and now, voters are beginning to know this as well.

#bernie #berniesanders #nevada #trump #feelthebern

Jermaine Reed is an author from Chicago currently pursuing his Creative Writing MFA. Click this link to explore his books. 

Ex-Officer Amber Guyger Found Guilty: The Quiet Before the Storm

Today, a jury unanimously decided former officer Amber Guyger had committed murder when she killed an innocent unarmed Black man inside his own home, supposedly believing it was her home. Ironically, she claimed self-defense.

After instances such as LaQuan McDonald and Philando Castille, I am a pessimist. Black lives in this country are undervalued in the criminal justice system and that cops who slay Black men are not appropriately disciplined. Today, Amber Guyger was found guilty, but that does not mean I was wrong in predicting she wouldn’t be in my last post.

I predict Amber Guyger will appeal her conviction, have a retrial and cop for a lesser charge that will see her go free in less than 5 years. I can not see the system letting a white girl rot behind bars for killing a Black man, regardless of how wrong she was. That would be un-American.

Inspiration Comes from Everywhere

As you’ll find if you read my blog thoroughly enough, I grew up in the Robert Taylor Projects on the Southside of Chicago. If you do any research, you’ll find it was not the ideal place to grow up, being overwhelmed with drugs and gang activity. But it is where I am from, and I am not ashamed of it.

My uncle Milton lived there as well but for over thirty years. When I was younger, he made a painting on my mom’s wall of the cartoon Tom cutting off Jerry’s head. Blood was everywhere in the painting. My mom was pissed to say the least. I was delighted, until she made him paint over it.

Milton is a very sarcastic person who you’ll either love or hate with hate seeming to be the winner in most cases. Yet he is comfortable with whom he is. On Monday, June 4, 2018, the Chicago Sun Times did a spread on him concerning his upbringing, painting and one of his pieces currently on display at an art gallery. This inspires me.

My family is condensed with people in the arts. I’m a writer, my uncle is an artist and some of my family makes music. Most of us came from those dilapidated buildings, but we have success, college degrees and each other.

Someone once asked me why I never failed to mention that I am from the projects. This person has a painful history, having grown up extremely poor to the point of having no running water in the house. Her childhood was traumatic. She is doing well for herself now, but she shies away from her past. She will not discuss with anyone how she grew up. It is this denial that leads her to question me. How can I, having grown up in the most notorious part of the city, be able and willing to speak openly about it?

I am not ashamed of where I come from. It has made me who I am, good or bad. It showed me that the world can be harsh, but that doesn’t mean I can’t make a difference. It is what inspires me to do better for my children so that they don’t have to experience what I did. The point is, embrace your past to know your future as the Sankofa bird of West Africa tells you.

 

A Review of A Higher Loyalty by James Comey

James Comey’s book A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership is a trip through the mind of one of the humblest men to pen a book and put it all on the line. At times, Comey opens to the point of vulnerability, expressing his true feelings and daring not hold back. Years from now, this book will be cataloged as history and stand partially as a reference on the most controversially detrimental presidencies this country has ever seen.

Although the end of the book speaks on Donald Trump and likens him to a mob boss with his “us versus them world view” and his “silent circle of assent” in which he says something and, because no one disagrees with him or speaks up, they all become complicit in whatever Trump is doing, Loyalty is about more than that. It is about the career of a man who never seemed to make as much money as he deserved, a man who lost a baby, a man who did his best to uphold the law.

Comey speaks of how much he hated bullies. Being a tall, lanky kid who did not have many friends, he was quite often bullied. At some point, he became a bully but realized he was wrong. He prosecuted many bullies in his days. And though he seems to have some level of respect for mob bosses to the effect of not embarrassing them in front of their families with an arrest, he sees them as a danger to society. He believes that no man, regardless of money, is above the law.

Admittedly, Comey acknowledges that he was no supporter of Barack Obama. However, after having met with him several times, he gained a great deal of respect for Obama’s honesty and focus. Once, when Comey gave a speech on law enforcement and the Black community, he called the bad guys “weeds.” Obama was able to challenge him on this term and help him realize why to some in the Black community it may have been offensive.

On several occasions during Comey’s term as FBI director, Donald Trump attempted to get the Director to pledge loyalty to him. Comey had been investigating Trump’s rival Hillary Clinton and some believed the investigation had led to her losing the election. Trump may have been one of those people and probably concluded that Comey was “a friend” of his. When he realized Comey was not, Trump fired him. FBI directors serve ten-year terms. Comey did not even serve four.

Comey speaks about being fired and how it hurt him. Even with that, his evaluation of Trump’s presidency as a “forest fire” is fair. He insinuates that Trump’s presidency is a threat to democracy. Still, he is hopeful, saying that forest fires make way for new life.

This book deserves 4.2 stars out of 5. Comey’s views on issues and crime within the Black community are shallow and static. Outside of being a law enforcement agent, he obviously has not read a great deal about the Black community or has not done any grassroots there to really feel what is happening there. Still, on other topics like Donald Trump as a compulsive liar and Barack Obama’s even-handed foresight, his evaluations are spot-on. Comey comes across as an honorable man and one would be hard-pressed to prove that everything he did in his career did not come from a good place within him.

#jamescomey #higherloyalty #barackobama #trump #donaldtrump