Mind and Destiny

“I make no pretension to patriotism. So long as my voice can be heard ... I will hold up America to the lightning scorn of moral indignation. In doing this, I shall feel myself discharging the duty of a true patriot; for he is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins. It is righteousness that exalteth a nation while sin is a reproach to any people.”- Frederick Douglass

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Location: Delhi, N.Y., United States

The author and his webmaster, summer of 1965.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Please Listen


The Oneonta Daily Star recently published the following letter to the editor that was submitted by Duncan Smith, who I consider a very wise professor. 
“President Trump, if you want to govern for all Americans, please recognize that you won on the distribution of votes, not their numbers. 
“The very real dissatisfactions of the ‘Rust Belt’ do require attention.  There are genuine threats to our safety and prosperity.  But over half of the electorate had deep concerns about both your ability to implement your promises and the consequences of the changes you may make. 
“An expanding global economy and new technology has changed what, how and where we make things to the benefit of American consumers and many workers.  But these changes have also cost us jobs in basic manufacturing. Coal mining is being displaced by natural gas extraction, and both face a future of viable alternatives to fossil fuel.
“Progress for most, as always, is being paid for by some.  The majority hopes that you do not sacrifice the many good current and future American jobs created by these changes in your admirable desire to help the displaced.  As our economy cannot again mirror the post-war’s, the Cold War’s defense posture will not address current threats.  Faster jets and more atomic bombs may make us feel safer but will help little against terrorism. 
“We need to invest in building alliances and addressing the root causes of anti-Western ideologies.  Please listen carefully to your experienced defense, intelligence and diplomatic people.  The other half of America is also afraid of the huge economic and social consequences of your immigration and health care proposals.  They worry for our LGBT, minority, and Muslim citizens.  And, yes, climate change.  So, please listen.
“Please get the whole picture.  Please act smart.  A good start at demonstrating your intention to govern for all America would be to recommend the appointment of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court.”

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