Politically Engaged

Politically Engaged

Looking back at the year 2019, I must admit, I was more engaged in the political arena than I ever thought possible. Though I was politically inspired to run for president in 2020 (reaction to trump in 2017) and motivated to support candidates in 2018, I never thought I’d actually run for an office. Although I didn’t win the seat for City Council, I gained so much more—friends, experience, and respect from the residents of Eastpointe (at least that’s the way they make me feel). And of course—support from family is always appreciated.

First of all, I attended my first swearing-in-ceremony for our Governor in January of 2019 and later that night, attended her inaugural ball. What a blast—from freezing outside in the morning to enjoying the glitz of the evening.

Later, in the same month, I was inspired to run for a seat on our City Council during a meeting with our State Representative, Kevin Hertel. I knew there were two seats open and knew one would be retained by the incumbent, and thought I had a shot at the other.

Thanks to the help of Robert Roscoe (who became my campaign treasurer), we were able to obtain the number of signatures needed to get on the ballot and from that point on—my life was a bit of a whirlwind. I was also serving as the secretary for our 9th Congressional District, secretary for the South Central Macomb Democratic Club, secretary of the Official Democratic Black Caucus of Macomb County and on the executive board of the Macomb County Democratic Committee. I also learned how to get endorsements by other groups

I began attending City Council meetings in 2017 and was even appointed to our Zoning Board of Appeals in 2018. Attended a class to enhance my understanding of what the role entailed and met Cliff Wilson (a really great guy), who was also in the class.

Did I mention that I also started working for the Eastpointe Community Schools District? Well, I did and met the most awesome women anyone could ever hope to meet—Karen Beltz, Michelle Dyrval, Helen Lee and Laurie Jeffries. Not that the others at the school weren’t awesome as well, but these were the women with whom I worked,  on a daily basis. During my short tenure at that school—we had a blast and I am so thankful for meeting them and still enjoying their company when possible.  They did not hesitate to support my political ambitions and I’ll be forever grateful to them.

The run for City Council entailed so much more than I’d thought about, but I was up for the challenge. Filed paperwork, opened bank account and ACTBlue Account, and planned a fundraiser, as well as attended others. I attended school board meetings, council meetings, city events, marched in parades, and trekked about the city wearing out two pair of gym shoes starting on a third pair. I participated in candidate forums, completed questionnaires, and was interviewed by local newspaper and television reporters, as well as an independent filmmaker (released later this year in 2020). I had meetings with residents on a regular basis, ramped up my social media accessibility for all and marveled at all the people I met—online.

There were people online (especially Facebook) who didn’t appreciate my campaigning on community group pages, but then there were awesome defenders of my campaign—Lauren Tossey immediately comes to mind, along with Laura Pagels and Jeanne Trice. And after that, a number of residents—Frank Accavitti, Phil DiMarialet, and others, let me know they supported my efforts.

During this time, I also became a block captain involved with our Eastpointe Neighborhood Watch Program—that’s how I met Laura and Jeanne and other residents on our three block area. I have the best neighbors in the world! And those in the NWG are the best. For “First Responders Day,” we provided our fire department with a meal and with a plea to assist, many of the block captains participated in providing a “Thanksgiving Meal” to our police and fire department.

Additionally, I met many people on the NextDoor community site. Tom Klawender will be a lifetime friend along with others, Gayle, Victoria, Danielle Gaston, Devi, Carol, Rhonda—and so many more, I can’t even remember everyone’s name at the present moment. And then there are is my Twitter Family (numbering over 9K) that were encouraging and supportive of my efforts in my political run. My social media family makes me realize how blessed I truly am.

As I mentioned earlier, I didn’t win the seat, but my determination to keep my promise, being a voice for the community, has put me on a different path—one I know I’ll enjoy and with the help of the residents, I know we’ll make a difference in this city. Here are the thoughts of one resident, posted on her page on Facebook and had me in tears:

I could be here the rest of the year ( ) writing about all the people that made 2019 better.

I’m going to keep it to one aspect and two people.

When I was in college, I had a professor in my ‘State and Local Government’ class who exhorted us to pay more attention to our local leaders, as what they did would have more of an impact on our daily lives than anything done on a federal level. He was right. Most of us can’t even name their Mayor or State Representative, but can tell you everything they like, or don’t like, about the President.

Keeping this in mind, both Ril Brozowski and Mary Hall-Rayford have reminded me of Professor Jarvis’ words from almost 40 years ago.

Ril for making Dania and I aware of the ‘players’ on our City Council, and for giving us some great advice PRN during our local elections this year.

Mary was a candidate for City Council this year. Unfortunately she did not win, but that has not slowed her down. Mary has some great insight into character and she has continued to be involved in the community. She makes herself available to all.

These two are the people the Prof spoke of and they have inspired me to heed his words….even if it has taken me years to do so!   Comment by Sue Fancett

So, this is how the year ended—with me in tears reading what a resident thought of me.

Now, I’m more determined than ever to make sure Eastpointe Residents have a voice in our local government—someone who will stand up for and with them as we move forward in becoming the Family Town—that embraces all.

1st responders day

Educating Voters

Educating Voters

Status-quo politics won’t change until those voting change–educating themselves about the candidates! The sooner we all realize that nothing in politics is going to change until we change, the better off we’ll be–with people in elected offices who will get things done.

Far too often, the voting electorate is stymied by the multitude of candidates for any elected office and instead of educating themselves about the candidates and the issues they promote, they simply rely upon “name recognition” or who can schmooze them the most. Let’s face it–with most of the issues, all candidates from either side of the spectrum say the same thing with a few minor differences. On the national level, everyone is talking about healthcare, jobs, education, climate change and infrastructure. On the local levels, the issues are pretty much the same with every candidate declaring how much they love where they live. But are they doing the work to demonstrate how much they love where they live?

Everyone wants a job with a living wage–one in which they only need to work one job, not two or three to survive. Everyone needs quality, affordable healthcare since none of us knows when we might fall ill or have some devastating event occur in our lives. No one wants to ride on roads that are crumbling or see railroads in need of repair or bridges deteriorating. And most sane people–want access to a quality education for their children and grandchildren–along with the hope of leaving a planet behind that will sustain life for hundreds of years to come. Those are the issues. And for us older folks–we want the government to leave our Social Security and Medicare alone!

What’s stopping us from electing the person who will work to solve all the issues? Identity politics–whether it is about party affiliation or name recognition– it is the basis for how many people vote. Some vote against everyone by writing in ridiculous names or by not voting at all. For those who practice–write-in-buffoonery or not voting–it is a vote–and probably for the person least wanted. We see the best example of that–right now.

How do we get the right people in office? We research, listen, ask questions, and evaluate what we discover–educating ourselves as to how the candidates have performed in the past (if they have previous experience), look at what they’re doing right now, and talking to them one-on-one in town halls or coffee hours on the campaign trail. A responsible electorate will not allow a person’s status to intimidate them and keep them from questioning any potential candidate. A responsible, worthwhile candidate will make themselves available to respond directly to the electorate, as often as possible.

So, to get who we want in office who’s going to work for the people, we must do our homework and do it early. We must listen to what candidates are saying to determine their message–regardless to whom they’re speaking–is consistent. We must not become–one issue voters–for when we allow the one issue to influence our decisions, we ultimately allow the wrong person to be elected. We must remember–elections have consequences--and that we will seldom agree with everything any one candidate about everything.

Many people have developed their own formula for determining how they’ll vote. Mine is simple–will I regret voting for the individual at a later date? If I can see where a candidate falls in line with at least 3/5 issues that matter to me, that’s the person I’ll choose. I can always fight for the other two at a later date. If there’s only one or two issues I agree with, I won’t vote for them–that’s too much of a risk to regret.

Since I am a political activist promoting the Democrat’s agenda, I suggest that the DNC and all of its affiliates spend some quality time educating voters about why we should put them in office and not just about voting against trump. Provide the facts, not speculation–with data easily understood. Provide a clear unified message and acknowledge room for improvement in a position on any issue. Include everyone–without a purity test–since none–no, not one–is a perfect human being. We don’t need perfect human beings–we need compassionate, empathetic, people with integrity in office–those who will govern for all the people and not just some.

As the campaign season progresses, I will continue to write about what we should be looking for in a candidate who will serve the country well and help to regain our standing on the global stage. Look for it–it will be coming on a regular basis.

truth

Until We Learn To Think First…

Until We Learn To Think First…

Many people are still pondering the dilemma in which we currently find ourselves. How did we get here? Where is here? We’re in the middle of a sink hole, where the erosion of our democracy is crumbling beneath us and there appears to be no way to save ourselves. We got here–to this place–in the middle of the sinking hole–because many people either refuse to think or don’t know how to think--before they vote!

How do we know? A quick review of 2016–helps those of us who are willing to think, understand how hatred and foolishness brought us here. There were those who hated Hillary Clinton so much they were willing to believe every negative piece of propaganda published and promoted about her. Then there were those who were foolish enough to allow their emotions to overwhelm a sense of duty and priority when Bernie Sanders was not the nominee–so they either didn’t vote or voted for a third–guaranteed–losing party. Had they thought about all the possible consequences of their actions–propelled without thinking–we might be in a different place. But they didn’t and we aren’t. Yes, I know the Russians played a role in the election, but does that mean, we were outsmarted by our adversaries simply because we refused to think?

I know a number of us could see right through the haze of confusing information that continued to bombard our sensibilities and did the right thing–not the party thing–the right thing. And that’s because we were thinking. I know many people who regret their actions because they refused to think their political party could lead them astray. What I’d like to know is–did it ever occur to any of them–to think about what was right or wrong, what was best for the nation?

Okay, so that happened in 2016 and people started thinking–just a little bit– in 2018 and we were able to set the nation back on course–at least in the House–bringing to a halt all of the policy decisions that devastate the poor and vulnerable. I mean, let’s face it–the only people who benefited from the “biggest tax cut ever” are the very rich, not the working class or poor and certainly not immigrants simply seeking a better life in America.

In 2019–on a local level–again the lack of thinking or at least right thinking–surfaced again. When people vote for a person because of a desire to see a particular race in office or merely on name recognition–we don’t always get the best person or even the right person in office–one who will address the needs of all, rather than just themselves.

So, here’s my solution–especially for Democrats if they want to win in 2020. Let’s stop talking “party” and start talking right and wrong, best and worst, and let’s begin with educating voters on how to research a candidate, what questions to ask them, and to think about how their lives will be impacted if a certain candidate(s) wins an election. It’s been said before and I don’t think it can said enough–Elections Have Consequences–and it’s usually the voter who suffers the consequences of their vote (or not voting) when thinking is not part of their process for making a decision.

Does the candidate demonstrate professionalism in their demeanor and interactions with others?

Is their public persona a reflection of their private persona?

Does the candidate have an understanding of the role they seek?

Will the election of their candidate cause a disruption in personal budgets? Will taxes rise?

Are they more concerned about the voters’ needs or their own?

Are they accessible to the voters?

Are they candid with voters when answering “vital” questions (not the garbage that has nothing to do with anything)?

Are they ambitiously pursuing a political career or they sincerely interested in making a difference in their local community?

Now, those are some pretty important questions when thinking about a candidate. What about the voter? What kind of questions should a voter ask of themselves? First of all, think about “motive” in choosing a candidate. Is it based upon race, age, gender or capability or simply–name recognition? Does bigotry tend to color perception of a person? What type of bias exist–within the voter–that will either impair or enhance perception of a person? None of these questions can be answered “with forethought” unless a person is willing to learn to think beyond the moment and more than just about self or feelings.

Our planet has been compromised and endangered because of people who cannot think beyond the moment. Climate change is real and having a person in the WH who only cares about making money and keeping his corporate lobbyists happy means, we’ll not long have soil in which food will grow that won’t kill us. We’ll not long have water we can drink or air we can breath without choking or coughing up the toxins in the air. That’s not the end of it–our children and grandchildren for decades to come will suffer because many of us–refused to think–before voting for someone who did not have our interests at the forefront of their plans.

The answer is very simple–every voter needs to educate themselves on the candidates and the issues and be willing to think. Democrats need to be available to educate voters who don’t know where to start finding information and promote thinking country over party, race, gender or religion. We need to learn to think before we act–gathering as much information as we can get in order to make a rational, logical decision about who gets our vote or how the issues will impact our lives. We only get one shot at selecting the right person during any election, so our one vote, must count the first time.

Until we learn to think first–we are going to allow the wrong person to be elected in just about every election–and then all we’ll have left–is complaints and fearfulness about our tomorrows. Access to the Internet, no matter which search engine is used, brings us that much closer to having sufficient information about any candidate–that will provoke thought and help us to make better decisions, in every election.

educate voters

 

Election 2019

Once upon a time, I thought I wanted to run for president and when I found out how much that would cost, I decided to run for an open seat on our city council. Now, I’ve never been overly fond of politics or politicians, but I thought I’d give it try any way. What I learned is–I was right to distrust the political machinery, even in a local election. Corruption has a stench that reaches into the hearts of small towns as well as big cities.

I followed the procedures I was given to get on the ballot–getting the required number of signatures, filing all the paperwork and having it done before deadline. On Memorial Day–2019,  I was told I had a target on my back. I heard what was said, but really didn’t give it much thought. “What can they do to me?” I thought. I knew there was nothing negative anyone would be able to find on me and if anything were publicized, it would have to be because someone made it up. Well, they did, but that didn’t stop me.

So, about a month or two before the election on November 5, 2019, I found out the plot–an 83 year-old white man who had been the former mayor and councilmember was running for the council seat because he didn’t want another African American on the council (we had one who got there by manipulation). Then things got really juicy. I was provided the man’s historical stance in trying to keep Black people out of the city–from blocking the sale of a building to a Black Church, to manipulating the Council into buying the building–only to discover once the city couldn’t afford the upkeep and had to close the building, the building ended up in the hands of a Black Church, anyway.

The name of the city was changed because it included the word, “Detroit” because some people didn’t want the association with the bigger city. About 20 years ago, the Black population was insignificant to most, but since then (around 2008), the numbers have been growing and now, it is believed that 40% of population is Black.

In 2017, the city was sued by the Department of Justice for allegedly violating civil rights voting laws. In November of 2017, a Black person was elected (primarily because of split votes between five Black candidates). In June of 2019, the city and DOJ reached a settlement–the city would use Ranked Choice Voting to establish a pathway for minority candidates to be elected. I ran, but was not successful in my bid for the seat because (viola) the plot to keep me off the council worked (name recognition).

How did it work? The “former mayor” of over 20 years ago, put out campaign signs for himself, another council candidate and a mayoral candidate. Whether others were involved remains to be discovered, but I’m guessing, someone will talk and someone else will hear about it. With the three signs put together in various locations, it gave the impression the three candidates were running as a team or slate (and since the three candidates were white, it made the DOJ lawsuit very relevant). And apparently, that’s how a number of people saw it–manipulation at work.

On election day, November 5, 2019, before the polls closed, the spouse of one of the candidates for council (the incumbent) happened to hold a conversation with a poll worker that he didn’t know, was there for me (correction–he did know). He laid out the entire plan (that was misunderstood by source). “My wife and Henry (pseudonym)  will win, and Mary will get a 1000 votes, then we’ll offer her an opportunity to apply for an appointment” (contextually, this was not reported with full knowledge and understanding of what was being said. The 1000 vote reference was about past experiences for candidates to win).

I got 1061 votes and the next day when we were given the results of the election, I was asked to consider applying for the appointment of a vacated seat. (This blog post ignited conversations–perhaps needed conversations in order to clear the air of any all misunderstandings. However, looking at the “entire” situation, without parsing–the optics were not good and possibly led to the misunderstandings, but I am yet analyzing to understand the motivation that prompted this entire discussion).

While I was considering applying, I got the word not to take it because it had been pre-planned and was possibly in violation of the Open Meetings Act. The way it was explained to me, by someone who had first-hand knowledge of the manipulative way the council worked. Some time ago, a seat was vacated and a number of people applied for the appointment. After the interviews, some were told they were sure to get it, but they didn’t. One of the interviewees found out later that a member of the council was friends with the wife of one of the interviewees and had been promised the positioned. The other person felt this was a waste of his time and since that “policy” was apparently the status quo, he didn’t want me involved with shenanigans. I’m grateful for the info.

Here’s what was offered: I would get the vote for the appointment as long as another person didn’t apply for it. I have documentation of what was said, just in case one or more of parties involved happens to read this. I love paper trails. And for those reading, before jumping to conclusions, try to understand how I perceived what I did. Being a minority, brings a certain mistrust to a number of situations and when a person “watches” what happens (not just hears), I tend to look a little closer look at everything, not just one thing. I’ve been told before that perhaps, I’m too analytical and that may be true, but being analytical means I examine all sides of an issue before drawing definitive conclusions. Note: DOJ has since responded to an inquiry by me and confirmed what I already knew–name recognition used as a means to choose candidates–will not change using Ranked Choice Voting. Basically, nothing much will ever change unless a person changes their name and that still may not work.

So, my proposal to fill the vacant seat is to appoint the person who was already voted for by the residents, rather than have 4-member council (likely divided) to try to make the decision. Based upon the “vacancy” section in the city charter, the council appoints the person to fill the vacancy–“before the DOJ settlement decree” and since the rules for voting changed, there should also be a change  in filling a vacancy since the Election Results record shows, how the next person ranked on the ballots with the residents’ input. The one thing the “plotters” overlooked is who would win the mayor’s seat, but that’s for another article. In that article, I’ll explain how “manipulation” won the day over egos. After all, the same manipulation that worked the first time around–when five Black candidates were in the race, won again–vote splitting–a winning strategy.

Too bad manipulation won’t hold seat. Tick-tock–the 6 month clock is running! Being escorted out a bar for being drunk (and I can imagine disorderly) right before an election–is not a good look and certainly not a “good representation” of self or city.

More next time! Keep watching as the “world turns and manipulation rules” in Eastpointe, MI! At the behest of the residents, I’m going to apply for the appointment and we’ll see how that works, in 2019. If it wasn’t for the residents, I’d call it a day and move on with my life–still helping where I can–but without the weight of corrupt politicism as a burden.

Author’s note: While some folks were trying to block me from winning an election out of pure racial bias, they forgot to keep watch of the mayoral candidate–who just happened to be Black–and won. Talk about Irony!

 

 

I’m Convinced!

I’m Convinced!

Reviewing news coverage about the number of incidents that occur between white people and the police and black people and the police, I’m convinced that there is a conspiracy by law enforcement officers to “kill black people” when they’re confronted, but to “save” the white people (with a few exceptions).

How many black people (predominantly male) have been killed just because of their skin color? Not many institutions will ever acknowledge the number because then they’d have to realize the stark truth of the matter–black people are targeted by their skin color, not necessarily by any alleged crime committed.

Eric Garner–killed when a white police officer refused to listen to him when he told him he couldn’t breathe. Why? I’m betting the mindset was, “one down and how many more to go?” Now, keep in mind, Eric Garner had no weapon of any kind. But then, a white male walks into a Walmart with bullet-proof vest and assault weapon and he’s, “talked down” with no one even drawing a weapon on him.

How many times must black men tolerate being profiled by police officers and “white citizenry” who proclaim fear for their lives just because a black person was in their presence?

Now, to get some perspective on the situation, let me ask this question: How many videos have been made and promoted on social media showing a black person calling the police on a white person just because they were taking up the same air space? How many times have we seen videos of white people, calling the police on black people just because they were black and then making up “absurd” excuses as to why they called. But then again, we’ve seen many videos in which white people harass and try to bully anyone of another ethnicity simply because. Is this the America we all love or is this the America trump has unleashed, full of hatred and bigotry?

I wish I knew Spanish well enough to hold a conversation within hearing range of a bigoted jerk just so I’d have a chance to tell them exactly what I think of them.

People who are fearful–have not love or humanity within them.

People who hate are fearful.

Since I do not fear people, nor do I hate them, I’m free to love all–primarily because I love myself and have love to give to others. I care about the plight of people and when I see injustice, I get angry and want to fight for the rights of others–no matter how many or who I’d be fighting against. I will always stand up for the marginalized groups that are targeted by bigoted, hateful people. We cannot allow hate to severely impact how our children live and play with others or how we all interact with one another. We are all human beings and I am convinced, once we understand that one simple fact and if we have even an iota of humanity within us, we’ll stop the hate!

I’m convinced–the only way we’ll stop all the foolishness we see reflected in our society right now is when we’re willing to sit down and talk “to” each other, not “at” each other. I’m convinced we’ll discover we have more in common than we don’t have; we all want to protect our children, live in a safe environment, and have the means to support our families. We should all want the planet to survive our existence so our grandchildren and great grandchildren will enjoy clean air and water and non-toxic soil so they’ll have food to eat. I’m convinced, I’m not the only person who feels this way and what I’d like to see is for everyone who “knows” not thinks, that all human beings deserve to be respected as such would do just that–treat other human beings the way any of us would want to be treated.

If we are unable to do that, I’m convinced we will have failed as Americans, human beings, and examples for others.  We don’t have to agree with everyone else, but we must learn how to disagree agreeably, respecting the rights of others to disagree with us, without calling them names or trying to dehumanize them. It is a very “weak” person who uses such tactics against other human beings.

I’m convinced–we can save the nation by putting aside our need to make us feel superior to others. None of us are superior to any others since we are all, flawed, imperfect beings. Now, let’s convince law enforcement, not to be fearful of black people, until they have ascertained credible reason to fear them. Let’s treat all transgressors of the law the same and try to save them for the judicial system to handle.

If you’re convinced of the same, I’d like to hear from you so we can work together to get America Back On The Right Track!

 

Are We Convinced Racism Still Exists in America?

Are We Convinced Racism Still Exists in America?

This has been a truly revealing week — and yet for many of us — it’s been a confirmation of what we already knew. A racist bigot occupies the White House and with every tweet, he proves it.

But it’s not just trump — the occupant in the White House— it’s the GOP in Congress who refuse to call him out on his racist behavior and comments or the treasonous rhetoric and his love for dictators. While we know trump is a racist, we may have tried to not conclude those in Congress were also just as racist as he is. Oh, we about some of them — the ones who are hard to miss or ignore like: Steve King Chuck Grassley, Tom Cotton, Matt Gaetz, Jim Jordan, Kevin McCarthy, John Cornyn, Mitch McConnell and others. So, when we think about all the elected officials who are racist bigots, we have to look at those who elected them and knew what they were.

Though their numbers (the racist GOP in Congress) may be few, look at the number of people they represent from their respective states who put them there! Look at the people who chanted, “send her back” when trump attacked, without evidence — Ilhan Omar — lying about what she has said (he forgets she’s apologized for some statements). They were clearly supportive of his racist stance in wanting to deport a woman of color who just happens to be Muslim. And then, the next day, he claims he didn’t like the chant and he didn’t say it. Really? Didn’t he say in a tweet that the women of color in Congress (Rashida, Ilhan, Ayanna, and AOC) who disagreed with him, and wouldn’t say “nice things” about him should go back where they came from? Lindsey Graham confirmed that had Ilhan Omar been wearing a red cap and embraced trump, he never would have said anything about her. And that’s a problem — trump only wants people in this country who will praise him and kiss his behind and go along with whatever he wants.

But I digress. He doesn’t understand democracy, any of America’s history regarding the tropes he uses that are racist and pervasive and he doesn’t care. He understands how to project fear into the hearts of those who feel they have somehow been victimized by people of color — without evidence — and it gives them the right to hate. His only goal is to win — by any means necessary — and we know he’ll use Russia’s help again to deliberately spread disinformation and misinformation to build the fear. What’s truly sad to watch is all the gullible people who praise him, thinking he cares about them. He doesn’t. They are simply a means to an end — his staying in the White House to avoid prosecution for all the crimes he’s committed.

So, here’s my message to the sane and rational people who have not yet succumbed to drinking the orange Kool Aid — recognize racism exists, how it keeps a stronghold on people, and then do everything you can to wipe it out of existence. A tall order I know, but we have to begin somewhere and it might as well be now.

Call out racism — wherever you see it, by whoever is guilty of it, even if it’s a friend or family member.

Never accept anyone’s justification for being a racist unless they can provide unequivocal evidence that proves whatever they’re saying is true.

Learn to love all humanity and treat everyone with respect especially those with whom we disagree. We can disagree agreeably without igniting fear that could lead to violence.

In our corner of the world in America, we must learn to take a stand and speak up wherever we find injustice (racism, despotism, etc.). Where there are those who are afraid to speak up, we must become the voice of reason and speak for them. And we must vote — in every election — knowing who it is we are voting for who will represent all the people, not just some of the people.

I’ve encountered blatant racism while campaigning for our governor last year, but it didn’t deter me, it ignited a desire in me to run for office — on the local level — and do my part to combat racism by demonstrating that people of color are capable of leading the masses no matter who the masses are. When we learn to see “a human being” in front of us, not just a person of a certain race, we start to unravel the misconceptions that have led to racism still existing in America. I love my city and I know because of the people I know — racism doesn’t exist in their hearts, but I can’t ignore the fact that in the hearts of some — it still exists.

The people with whom I have a relationship with — friends, family social media followers — know I don’t care about a person’s ethnicity — I care about them and how I’m treated and I always try to encourage others and tell them I love them — even those I haven’t met. It’s just that simple. We can bring racism to an end if we really want to do so, by minimizing the impact we allow the haters to have on what we do (unless challenged or threatened with bodily harm). It’s our choice. We can feed their egos and animosity or we can focus on bringing communities together and let the world see who we really are —American Patriots who care about all.

On another note — running for any office takes money — even the local races — and I want to make sure I’m in position to represent my community well and to be “a voice for them.” We’re short $1K in meeting our budget goal by August 1, 2019. Will you help with a $5 donation to help me with this election so I can stay focused on shredding racism in my little corner of America? Thank you! Real change begins, locally and spreads outward. https://secure.actblue.com/donate/committee-2-elect-mary-hall-rayford-1

If you want to know more about me and the issues and concerns I’m addressing, please check me out on facebook.com/EPCityCouncilCandidate.

No Checks/No Balance Of Power

No Checks/No Balance Of Power

Don’t know how many people feel about the current state of affairs in America with the lack of respect for our Constitution. Considering the fact that the Founding Fathers understood that at some point, the time would come when the balance of power would be challenged and we’re here. This White House administration has flatly refused to honor the Constitutional features of checks and balances and is operating as an authoritarian entity. That is not what America is supposed to be.

In 2017, the GOP Congress–both House and Senate–abdicated their responsibility to keep trump checked and in 2018–the people spoke and won the House. Even though the Democratic House has the Congressional Power to do its oversight, they are meeting roadblock after roadblock with the administration who obviously has much to hide from the public. And that’s the key. The White House is the “People’s House” and everything that pertains to the American public should be public knowledge–especially “private meetings with our adversaries, trump’s taxes, and his business financials. The liar-in-chief is hiding the truth for a reason and we, the American public, should not be left in the dark about what he’s doing or has done and we need to know how obligated he is to the murderous dictators he’s so fond of praising.

Granted, the House can’t stop who he praises, but they can take other measures that limit his ability to put America in harm’s way. An impeachment inquiry is needed ASAP! Donald J. Trump is a threat to national security since he obviously shares information with his foreign dictator buddies. He has openly revealed his plans to use Russian or any other foreign assistance to help cheat during the 2020 election. I’m absolutely sure our intelligence community is aware of all the communications he and staff make to ensure this happens. I’m equally sure that he can be stopped.

It’s time, House Democrats to put a lid on this situation before it boils over and severely creates a crisis of humongous proportions in which many will lose their lives. War with Iran is not out of the question and since his 4th of July charade was apparently an attempt to recruit to the military, he underscores that possibility.

There can be no balance of power within our government if every branch of the government is not exercising all of its ability to check the White House. Congressional Oversight is meant to be a check on the Executive branch in order to keep “all Americans” safe and secure within this country. We are failing miserably because Democrats follow the rule of law. So, the judicial branch, no matter how overtly biased in its composition, must adhere to the “intent and spirit” of the Constitution (as well as the words) to support Congress in their attempt to conduct oversight. Do The Right Thing to protect America and all those who reside within our borders. Let trump know–again–SCOTUS you are not his judges any more than our military is his military. Help Congress put a stop to the insanity, NOW!

**This message has been brought to you, the readers and to Congress by one fed-up American who is tired of the stupid. My name is Mary Hall-Rayford and I approve this message. If anyone reading wants to share and forward to their Congressional representatives, please feel free to do so.**truth