Ted Cruz Walks out of Mandela Memorial but is Lukewarm on Gun Reform

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Theme:– Operation C.R.U.S.H. Against Gun Violence, Bias and Clouded Vision

It was a typical morning in Newtown. Some parents dropped-off their kids before doing a little Christmas shopping. Then news broke the airwaves and broke hearts. Since then there’s been more angst than action. Think about it, Senator Ted Cruz walks out of Mandela’s Memorial but is lukewarm on gun reform.

It’s hard to imagine that the tragedy of Newtown has not moved the needle much. We saw wall-to-wall media coverage. The event brought social outcry and community vigils. Some of the surviving parents went to Washington to plead their case. But even that wasn’t enough to get common sense to budge.

Residents in New York and Connecticut can think back to recent weather-related storms. The damage caused by Superstorm Sandy was bad enough. But it was the loss in electric power that added insult to injury. Many people went without power for a few days, even weeks. So, local elected officials took action.

Well, since Newtown it’s almost as if ‘we the people’ experienced another power failure. Everybody agrees that this was a horrible event. Many vowed to do everything possible to honor those lost. And now a year later, we’re still waiting on those with a heart in Congress, to put their muscle where their mouth is.

Even after former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ experience it seemed that wasn’t enough of a wake-up call. She’s still recovering from the trauma of the incident and scars from the after-effects. This makes one wonder if there’s something in our cultural psyche that could be scarred as well.

Footnote: The debate in some circles is about gun reform versus gun rights, but maybe it should really be more about the near-term and long-term effects in the community of a power failure.

Senator Harry Reid Went ‘Nuclear,’ What if ‘Boyz in the Hood’ did the Same?

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Theme:– Operation C.R.U.S.H. Against Gun Violence, Bias and Clouded Vision

Imagine Congress has to make some budget decisions by end of year. These are needed to avoid another government shutdown. It’s not clear if that’s been made easier or harder now that the filibuster has been busted. Senator Harry Reid went ‘nuclear,’ so what if ‘boyz in the hood’ did the same?

The filibuster rule in the Senate has been plaguing the Obama Administration. Many of his executive and judicial appointments have been blocked by a Republican minority. The original purpose of the rule was to provide a courtesy to minority representatives to share their voice of dissent on a policy matter.

One senator has been quoted as saying “The rule change made by Harry Reid is intended to give the majority party the ability to do whatever it wants to do.” That’s not the full story because it’s really meant to curtail the minority party from doing whatever it wants to do to block progress just for blocking sake.

The Washington D.C. climate shows political change is tough stuff. This is equally true for social change on income inequality, jobs, gun violence and mental illness. Sometimes it’s choosing an ‘easy fix, easy sell’ or a ‘hard fix, hard sell.’ And other times change calls for using a weapon of mass disruption (WMD).

Whether in Congress or the community some rather resist than embrace change. It’s easier to block gun reform than embrace sensible fixes. As the country reflects on the legacy of President John F. Kennedy Jr. let’s consider his administration’s shift from ‘pre-historic notions’ closer to a more perfect union.

Footnote: Sometimes change is a natural shift in current trends and other times it happens as a result of taking action to prevent a bad situation from slipping into evil and instead achieving greater good.

Mark Zuckerberg Never Saw This Coming, or Did He?

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Theme:– Operation C.R.U.S.H. Against Gun Violence, Bias and Clouded Vision

It seems Facebook is going through some changes. They recently reversed their policy on the posting of violent videos to the site. They’re now allowed even though sexually explicit content remains banned. Many say Facebook use by teens is on the decline. Mark Zuckerberg never saw that coming, or did he?

More tween and teen users are moving to other less mainstream social sites. That doesn’t mean Facebook’s days are numbered. But it might say something about what’s happening in the social media underground. The experts warn of sites where bullying and online bashing are a frequent occurrence.

Authorities arrested two Florida girls recently whose alleged bullying resulted in another girl committing suicide. Within days an Illinois boy took his life for the same reason. When stories like these and others of school shootings hit the news there’s a tendency to focus more on the senselessness of the incidents.

Maybe our efforts should instead be more focused on offering kids a sense of purpose. This doesn’t have to be religious-based or “Tony Robbins light.” It just has to point kids to the “cool in them” based on their natural gifting. Their natural gifting might be in academics, athletics or some prodigy-in-the-making ability.

Recently, two Boys Scout leaders were seen destroying a historic rock formation at a Utah State Park. They had the nerve to post it on Facebook. Some kids are lost in online chat while others in video games. At the end of the day we’re not dealing with bad kids but maybe kid’s who’re becoming lost on purpose.

Footnote: Adding a sense of purpose to conversations on gun violence, bias and mental illness is important because the message our culture sends can often drown-out the message coming from home.