Covering Washington politics. From our vantage point. One day a time.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

President Obama Makes Statement on Syria

"I'm ready to act."

Speaking in the Rose Garden of the White House this afternoon, President Obama made the case for U.S. intervention in Syria. 

"This attack is an assault on human dignity.  It also presents a serious danger to our national security.  It risks making a mockery of the global prohibition on the use of chemical weapons.  It endangers our friends and our partners along Syria’s borders, including Israel, Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq.  It could lead to escalating use of chemical weapons, or their proliferation to terrorist groups who would do our people harm.   In a world with many dangers, this menace must be confronted."

Congressional members are already in opposition of a strike on Syria.

Representative Charlie Rangel (D-NY) doesn't share the president's views.  Speaking earlier today with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Rangel said he doesn't see where the U.S. is in any real danger, and opposes any action against Syria.

Rangel, who has long been in favor a military draft, has declared he would emphatically vote "No" citing several risks that could place America's military in harms way.

"All of these risks will be borne by our young service men and women in the Middle East", said Rangel. "So before committing a single American pilot or soldier to the conflict in Syria, Congress must have a robust debate about the national interests that our troops are being asked to protect."

The president stated that he is willing to accept such a Congressional debate - a decision that is pleasing to a Republican party that wears its ego on its shoulders whenever the president makes any kind of decision that doesn't involve them.

Congress is on recess until September 9th, but there is no shortage of comments on the matter.

Perhaps the most poignant point of view came from Senator Ted Cruz when he said, "We are not the world's police."

President Obama drafts legislation regarding Authorization for Use of United States Armed Forces in
connection with the conflict in Syria.

Friday, August 30, 2013

White House Claims To Have Had Knowledge of Syrian Attack

"Our intelligence sources in the Damascus area did not detect any indications in the days prior to the attack that opposition affiliates were planning to use chemical weapons." - Senior White House Officials

During a White House conference call today with Senior Administration officials, media were given a
U.S. government assessment of the Syrian government’s use of chemical weapons on August 21, 2013, with two very different accounts.

Part of the Assessment indicates that US intelligence was unaware of the planned attacks on Syria.
"Our intelligence sources in the Damascus area did not detect any indications in the days prior to the attack that opposition affiliates were planning to use chemical weapons."

Another portion of the Assessment makes the claim that the US did have intelligence, indicating that Syrian forces were preparing chemical munitions prior to the August 21st attack.

"We have intelligence that leads us to assess that Syrian chemical weapons personnel – including personnel assessed to be associated with the SSRC – were preparing chemical munitions prior to the attack. In the three days prior to the attack, we collected streams of human, signals and geospatial intelligence that reveal regime activities that we assess were associated with preparations for a chemical weapons attack. Syrian chemical weapons personnel were operating in the Damascus suburb of ‘Adra from Sunday, August 18 until early in the morning on Wednesday, August 21 near an area that the regime uses to mix chemical weapons, including sarin.  On August 21, a Syrian regime element prepared for a chemical weapons attack in the Damascus area, including through the utilization of gas masks. "
The White House claims that multiple streams of intelligence indicated that the regime executed a rocket and artillery attack against the Damascus suburbs in the early hours of August, 21st.  Satellite detections corroborated that attacks from a regime-controlled area struck neighborhoods where the chemical attacks reportedly occurred – including Kafr Batna, Jawbar, ‘Ayn Tarma, Darayya, and Mu’addamiyah.
Intelligence was gathered from numerous classified and unclassified sources, per the White House, that include accounts from "international and Syrian medical personnel; videos; witness accounts; thousands of social media reports from at least 12 different locations in the Damascus area; journalist accounts; and reports from highly credible nongovernmental organizations".

With all that intelligence, the looming question was, of course, why couldn't the Syrian use of chemical weapons be thwarted?

The response from a  SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL is below.

 "As to the indicators that we have of preparations, let me just say in this forum that timelines for all of our streams of intelligence are different.  And so, in some cases, we can and do get something close to real time; and other times, because of the nature of the access or the procedure or the process, there is some built-in delay.  And again, I don’t want to add more here as to what’s on our capability side, but just to say that we feel confident that we can, in fact, identify that those preparations occurred.  They were under the regime control and thus implemented from above."

Reaction to Syria's use of chemical weapons on thousands of men, women, and children has been mixed, but perhaps none as controversial as from a person purporting to be the son of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.

Supposedly Assad's son, Hafez Assad, who is eleven mind you, took to Facebook with his own interpretation of the Syrian attack, and of the US military.

"No one has soldiers like the ones we do in Syria. ... America doesn't have soldiers, what it has is some cowards with new technology who claim themselves liberators."

Quite militant for a six grader, eh?

The poster (or poser) goes on to write...

Are you as 'smart' as this sixth grader?  Is your sixth grader's cognitive ability as keen as this alleged 6th grader?

President Obama, in a meeting today with Baltic leaders, remarked that he does not have plans to send US military to Syria in the wake of the attacks.
"We're not considering any open ended commitment. We're not considering any boots on the ground approach."
No word on what action the US does plan to take, if anything, are clear at this time.
Added President Obama, "I have not made any decisions" about what actions the US will take.

"We have consulted with allies. We have consulted with Congress."

Secretary of State John Kerry Remarks on Syria

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Obama Administration Implements New Actions Aimed At Reducing Gun Violence

Today, the Obama administration announced two new common-sense executive actions to keep the most dangerous firearms out of the wrong hands and ban almost all re-imports of military surplus firearms to private entities. These executive actions build on the 23 executive actions that the Vice President recommended as part of the comprehensive gun violence reduction plan and the President unveiled on January 16, 2013.
As Congress fails to act on common-sense proposals, like expanding criminal background checks and making gun trafficking a federal crime, the President and Vice President remain committed to using all the tools in their power to make progress toward reducing gun violence.

Tea Party member stands on busy overpass strapped with assault weapon.
Building on the 23 Executive Actions the President and Vice President Unveiled Last January
·         Last December, the President asked the Vice President to develop a series of recommendations to reduce gun violence. On January 16, 2013, they released these proposals, including 23 executive actions. With the first Senate confirmation of an ATF Director on July 31, 2013, the Administration has completed or made significant progress on 22 of the 23 executive actions. The new executive actions unveiled today build on this successful effort. 
Closing a Loophole to Keep Some of the Most Dangerous Guns Out of the Wrong Hands
·         Current law places special restrictions on many of the most dangerous weapons, such as machine guns and short-barreled shotguns.  These weapons must be registered, and in order to lawfully possess them, a prospective buyer must undergo a fingerprint-based background check.

·         However, felons, domestic abusers, and others prohibited from having guns can easily evade the required background check and gain access to machine guns or other particularly dangerous weapons by registering the weapon to a trust or corporation.  At present, when the weapon is registered to a trust or corporation, no background check is run.  ATF reports that last year alone, it received more than 39,000 requests for transfers of these restricted firearms to trusts or corporations.
·         Today, ATF is issuing a new proposed regulation to close this loophole.  The proposed rule requires individuals associated with trusts or corporations that acquire these types of weapons to undergo background checks, just as these individuals would if the weapons were registered to them individually.  By closing this loophole, the regulation will ensure that machine guns and other particularly dangerous weapons do not end up in the wrong hands.
Keeping Surplus Military Weapons Off Our Streets
·         When the United States provides military firearms to its allies, either as direct commercial sales or through the foreign military sales or military assistance programs, those firearms may not be imported back into the United States without U.S. government approval.  Since 2005, the U.S. Government has authorized requests to reimport more than 250,000 of these firearms.

·         Today, the Administration is announcing a new policy of denying requests to bring military-grade firearms back into the United States to private entities, with only a few exceptions such as for museums.  This new policy will help keep military-grade firearms off our streets.

Related - Are you serious?
Tea Party group exercises their '2nd Amendment Rights' while declaring impeachment of President Obama, wearing guns on a busy overpass.   Exercise in race:  What would happen if African Americans did the same? 

Monday, August 12, 2013

VCU To Lead $62M Study of Vet Brain Injuries

Virginia Commonwealth University has been awarded a $62 million federal grant to oversee a national research consortium of universities, hospitals and clinics that will study what happens to service members and veterans who suffer mild traumatic brain injuries or concussions, the White House announced.
The concussions that will be studied include both combat injuries, such as those from blasts and bullets, and civilian injuries, such as those from car accidents, sports injuries and falls.
[Read Article HERE].

“This is another significant milestone in VCU’s ascent as a national-caliber public research university,” said VCU President Michael Rao. “We recognize that an award of this magnitude only results from the research excellence that is fostered and encouraged across VCU.”
This is the second particularly large grant that VCU has received in recent years. In 2010, VCU received a $20 million grant – until now, the largest federal award in its history – from the National Institutes of Health to become part of a nationwide consortium of research institutions working to turn laboratory discoveries into treatments for patients. VCU was the only academic health center in Virginia selected to join the consortium.
Quotes by the Administration on the topic of brain injury...
"Imagine if we could reverse traumatic brain injury or PTSD for our veterans who are coming home."  - President Obama (speaking at the NATIONAL CONFERENCE ON MENTAL HEALTH)
"For our veterans with PTSD, we’ve made it easier for you to get the VA care you need as well, regardless of the war that you served in."  - First Lady Michelle Obama (speaking at a DISABLED AMERICAN VETERANS CONVENTION)
"We have seen doctors and nurses take bold new steps to care for the families affected by PTSD and traumatic brain injuries." (speaking at a JOINING FORCES EMPLOYMENT EVENT)
"We’re also focused on the urgent needs of our veterans with PTSD.  We’ve poured tremendous resources into this fight -- thousands of more counselors and more clinicians, more care and more treatment.  And we've made it easier for veterans with PTSD to qualify for VA benefits.  But after a decade of war, it’s now an epidemic.  We’re losing more troops to suicide -- one every single day -- than we are in combat.  According to some estimates, about 18 veterans are taking their lives each day -- more every year than all the troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.  That's a tragedy.  It's heartbreaking.  It should not be happening in the United States of America."  (speaking at THE 113TH NATIONAL CONVENTIONOF THE VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The Obama's In Cape Cod

President Obama and family are vacationing at Martha's Vineyard this week. We're told the First Daughters are, of course, joining their parents.

The president is using this time as Congress recesses for their own five week vacation.

President and First Lady Michelle Obama arrive at Martha's Vineyard.
The president, with plans of golfing and rest on his agenda, will continue to be briefed daily on world affairs while on vacation.

From today's pool report:

Greetings from the island. It’s a sparkling, sunny day for the Obamas’ first full day of vacation. The sky is blue. The breeze is light. The pool is chipper and well rested. The president is going golfing. The pool started the day with a visit to Alley’s farm stand (great peaches), followed by some hanging and waiting in a field near the estate where the president is stay. We began to roll at 11:15 am, but got no sign of the president. The trip along South Road was easy and uneventful. For those who haven’t seen it yet, the main road near the Obama’s rented home is lined with trees, rolling hills, the occasional low stone wall and several charming cottages. We passed only a few onlookers, who waved and smiled, and a few brave bicyclists, who seemed unfazed by the fast approaching caravan of government vehicles. We arrived at Farm Neck Golf Club in Oak Bluffs at 11:35am. The clubhouse is a grey-shingled and white-trimmed building.

More to come, we're sure.

Summer Rewind: Senator John McCain's Son Marries

The twice presidential candidate smiles happily as his son Jack McCain marries Renee Swift this past June 1st. The 29-year-old Swift is captain in the USAF reserve.

Jack and Swift met while they both were stationed in Guam. He joins several other McCain family males to serve in the U.S. Military.

Senator John McCain's Son Marries Renee Swift in a June 1, 2013 ceremony.
The bride, who described herself as "mixed race" (maybe she's related to Taylor Swift) is a graduate of San Diego State University-California State University, currently working as the Chief Financial Officer at 36th Medical Group, Andersen AFB.

Along with several other 'descriptions' of herself on her social media pages, she posted that her hair "leans more towards her Black ancestry".

Oh, these 'mixed raced' Blacks. You never hear a Caucasian person say, I'm Jewish, but my long, pointed nose leans more towards the Irish persuasion.

Before heading back to Guam, the happy couple vacationed in Africa (where the bride's hair probably really leaned towards her Black ancestry).


Thursday, August 8, 2013

President Obama Names Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipients

2013 Marks 50th Anniversary of President Kennedy’s Establishment of the
Presidential Medal of Freedom
A nice , and notable, group of Americans are slated to receive the 2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama

The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the Nation’s highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors. The awards will be presented at the White House later this year.
This year marks the 50th Anniversary of the Executive Order signed by President John F. Kennedy establishing the Presidential Medal of Freedom, as well as the first ceremony bestowing the honor on an inaugural class of 31 recipients.  Since that time, more than 500 exceptional individuals from all corners of society have been awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. 
President Obama said, “The Presidential Medal of Freedom goes to men and women who have dedicated their own lives to enriching ours. This year's honorees have been blessed with extraordinary talent, but what sets them apart is their gift for sharing that talent with the world. It will be my honor to present them with a token of our nation's gratitude."
The following individuals will be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom:
Ernie Banks
Known to many as “Mr. Cub,” Ernie Banks is one of the greatest baseball players of all time.  During his 19 seasons with the Chicago Cubs, he played in 11 All-Star Games, hit over 500 home runs, and became the first National League player to win Most Valuable Player honors in back-to-back years.  He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1977, his first year of eligibility. 
Ben Bradlee
Ben Bradlee is one of the most respected newsmen of his generation.  During his tenure as executive editor of The Washington Post, Mr. Bradlee oversaw coverage of the Watergate scandal, successfully challenged the Federal Government over the right to publish the Pentagon Papers, and guided the newspaper through some of its most challenging moments.  He also served in the Navy during World War II.
Bill Clinton
President Clinton was the 42nd President of the United States.  Before taking office, he served as Governor and Attorney General of the State of Arkansas.  Following his second term, President Clinton established the Clinton Foundation to improve global health, strengthen economies, promote health and wellness, and protect the environment.  He also formed the Clinton-Bush Haiti Fund with President George W. Bush in 2010.
Daniel Inouye (posthumous)
Daniel Inouye was a lifelong public servant.  As a young man, he fought in World War II with the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, for which he received the Medal of Honor.  He was later elected to the Hawaii Territorial House of Representatives, the United States House of Representatives, and the United States Senate.  Senator Inouye was the first Japanese American to serve in Congress, representing the people of Hawaii from the moment they joined the Union. 
Daniel Kahneman
Daniel Kahneman is a pioneering scholar of psychology.  After escaping Nazi occupation in World War II, Dr. Kahneman immigrated to Israel, where he served in the Israel Defense Forces and trained as a psychologist.  Alongside Amos Tversky, he applied cognitive psychology to economic analysis, laying the foundation for a new field of research and earning the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2002. He is currently a professor at Princeton University.
Richard Lugar
Richard Lugar represented Indiana in the United States Senate for more than 30 years.  An internationally respected statesman, he is best known for his bipartisan leadership and decades-long commitment to reducing the threat of nuclear weapons.  Prior to serving in Congress, Senator Lugar was a Rhodes Scholar and Mayor of Indianapolis from 1968 to 1975.  He currently serves as President of the Lugar Center.
Loretta Lynn
Loretta Lynn is a country music legend. Raised in rural Kentucky, she emerged as one of the first successful female country music vocalists in the early 1960s, courageously breaking barriers in an industry long dominated by men.  Ms. Lynn’s numerous accolades include the Kennedy Center Honors in 2003 and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010.
Mario Molina
Mario Molina is a visionary chemist and environmental scientist.  Born in Mexico, Dr. Molina came to America to pursue his graduate degree.  He later earned the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovering how chlorofluorocarbons deplete the ozone layer.  Dr. Molina is a professor at the University of California, San Diego; Director of the Mario Molina Center for Energy and Environment; and a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.
Sally Ride (posthumous)
Sally Ride was the first American female astronaut to travel to space.  As a role model to generations of young women, she advocated passionately for science education, stood up for racial and gender equality in the classroom, and taught students from every background that there are no limits to what they can accomplish.  Dr. Ride also served in several administrations as an advisor on space exploration.
Bayard Rustin (posthumous)
Bayard Rustin was an unyielding activist for civil rights, dignity, and equality for all.  An advisor to the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., he promoted nonviolent resistance, participated in one of the first Freedom Rides, organized the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, and fought tirelessly for marginalized communities at home and abroad.  As an openly gay African American, Mr. Rustin stood at the intersection of several of the fights for equal rights.
Arturo Sandoval
Arturo Sandoval is a celebrated jazz trumpeter, pianist, and composer.  Born outside Havana, he became a protégé of jazz legend Dizzy Gillespie and gained international acclaim as a dynamic performer.  He defected to the United States in 1990 and later became an American citizen.  He has been awarded nine Grammy Awards and is widely considered one of the greatest living jazz artists.
Dean Smith
Dean Smith was head coach of the University of North Carolina basketball team from 1961 to 1997.  In those 36 years, he earned 2 national championships, was named National Coach of the Year multiple times, and retired as the winningest men’s college basketball coach in history.  Ninety-six percent of his players graduated from college.  Mr. Smith has also remained a dedicated civil rights advocate throughout his career.
Gloria Steinem
Gloria Steinem is a renowned writer and activist for women’s equality.  She was a leader in the women’s liberation movement, co-founded Ms. magazine, and helped launch a wide variety of groups and publications dedicated to advancing civil rights.  Ms. Steinem has received dozens of awards over the course of her career, and remains an active voice for women’s rights.
Cordy Tindell “C.T.” Vivian
C.T. Vivian is a distinguished minister, author, and organizer.  A leader in the Civil Rights Movement and friend to the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., he participated in Freedom Rides and sit-ins across our country.  Dr. Vivian also helped found numerous civil rights organizations, including Vision, the National Anti-Klan Network, and the Center for Democratic Renewal.  In 2012, he returned to serve as interim President of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
Patricia Wald
Patricia Wald is one of the most respected appellate judges of her generation.  After graduating as 1 of only 11 women in her Yale University Law School class, she became the first woman appointed to the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, and served as Chief Judge from 1986-1991.  She later served on the International Criminal Tribunal in The Hague.  Ms. Wald currently serves on the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board. 
Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey is one of the world’s most successful broadcast journalists.  She is best known for creating The Oprah Winfrey Show, which became the highest rated talk show in America for 25 years. Ms. Winfrey has long been active in philanthropic causes and expanding opportunities for young women.  She has received numerous awards throughout her career, including the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award in 2002 and the Kennedy Center Honors in 2010.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

President Obama Remarks on Anniversary of Kenyan and Tanzania Bombings

"Today marks the 15th anniversary of al-Qaeda’s terrorist attacks against the U.S. Embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, which killed innocent Americans and Africans.  On this day, we honor the families of the twelve Americans who lost their lives, and we join with the people and governments of Kenya and Tanzania honoring the sacrifices of the African victims of this heinous act, which killed over 200 and wounded over 5,000. 
Last month, I was honored to pay tribute to those who lost their lives, and to meet with some of the survivors, at a memorial to the fallen in Dar es Salaam.  The United States is steadfast in our commitment to protect the American men and women who dutifully serve our nation overseas, and we will remain resolute in working with our partners to combat violent extremism  in East Africa, across the region, and around the world.  We continue to stand with our East African partners to bring terrorists to justice and will carry on our efforts to prevent these attacks in the future.  On this day of remembrance, we extend our deepest thoughts and prayers to the families of those killed and wounded in the 1998 attack, and we join with our friends and partners in East Africa and around the globe in honoring their memory by building a safer, more secure, and more prosperous world." 
Rwanda and Burundi share the same East African region where both Kenya and Tanzania are located.  The two countries were hit in embassy attacks on Aug. 7, 1998 under Osama bin Laden's terror reign.   The bombing killed nearly 250 people.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

President Obama Not Feeling Lifestyle of Kanye West, Kim Kardashian

Local Activists Not Impressed With Lifestyle of the Obamas

President Obama has, once again, made his thoughts known about how he feels about Kanye West.

One may recall Mr. Obama calling Kanye West "a jackass" while microphones were still running backstage after an Obama speaking event early during his first term as president.

Now, the president, in an interview with is saying that to have the status of a Kanye West (and Kim Kardashian, the mother of West's infant daughter) isn't what America's kids should aspire to be.


Said President Obama, "The American Dream involved some pretty basic stuff. A good job where you felt some security. A good education. People felt if they worked hard they could get there. I don’t think people went around saying to themselves, ‘I need to have a 10,000-square-foot house I think, there has also been a shift in culture. We weren’t exposed to the things we didn’t have in the same way that kids these days are. There was not that window into the lifestyles of the rich and famous. Kids weren’t monitoring every day what Kim Kardashian was wearing, or where Kanye West was going on vacation, and thinking that somehow that was the mark of success.”

With that attitude, thankfully we're still not driving Model Ts, commuting by horse and buggy, and speaking on rotary dial phones.

Not everyone can fly in private jets, live in 10,000 square-foot homes, and have Americans monitor what we wear like a Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, or president and first lady of the United states, but becoming as successful as you can, legally, isn't necessarily a bad thing.   What happen to 'live your best life', 'shoot for the sky', and 'the sky's the limit', 'dream big', and dare I say it - becoming president of the United States?  Don't those ideas still mean something? 

In an unusual twist, while the president is criticizing the lifestyles of the new rich and famous, one group is criticizing the lifestyle of his family for being ingratiated with the queen of pop culture, Beyonce Knowles- Carter, calling for a boycott of the first lady from attending any future concerts during Beyoncé's world-wide Mrs. Carter tour.

The Pray at the Pump Movement (PAPM), a group of religiously concerned citizens, have been picketing Beyoncé concerts, starting with the one last week in DC, and plan to take their message to Beyonce's concert in New York this week.

The PAPM says the Obama's involvement with 'the Carters is unbecoming of a first lady and president of the United States.   

Here's an excerpt from the group's official statement ...

"After the warm reception that the Pray at the Pump Movement (PAPM ) received [in front of] the White House this morning,  representatives decided to extend their protest to the Verizon Center today from 6 to 8 PM.  Concerned parents and representatives of PAPM will be  praying that God will destroy the demons that Jay-Z and Beyonce are bringing to our cities. Some of our picket signs will read: 'Beyoncé and Jay-Z  are possessed by Demons'. 'Mrs. Obama, You are Degrading the Office of First Lady By Attending this Demon Possessed Concert', and 'How Can You Save our Children'?

The furor of these people comes at a time when the Internet is loaded with religious leaders who are denouncing Beyoncé for her satanic alter ego Sasha Fears that appears on stage and whose caricatures resemble the devil. She constantly uses the triangle motions in her performances.  The Bible tells us that these demons are dangerous and should be rebuked.  We believe that through attending this concert that Mrs. Obama and others are placing themselves in the path of these evil spirits that tend to linger and impact our daily lives.  We will be sprinkling Holy Water around the Verizon Center with hopes of protecting people who come to this concert.  Jay-Z declares that he and his wife give a lot to charity that is not reported.  The time has come for them to let the world know what they do with the money they make from their musical empire that is destroying our youth.   Furthermore, the fact that they spent 9 million dollars to have a baby in privacy while other children starve in New York has a demoniac touch.  May God have mercy on their souls and those who are spending exorbitant amounts to be a part of this demoniac experience at the Verizon Center this evening.   On Behalf of all Youth in America, we Urge Mrs. Obama to spend this night with her husband helping him figure out how to bring down the high youth unemployment and crime in the Washington metropolitan area, Chicago, and other major American cities. We continue to urge Obama to invite Pope Francis and other religious leaders to hold an exorcism of Capitol Hill and the White House.   We hope that Jay-Z and Beyoncé will allow these leaders to drive out the demons that are possessing them also."  

The group's leader, Rocky Twyman, still thinks that Mrs. Obama is a good person, calling her "a wonderful mom", but disagrees with her calling Beyoncé a role model for young girls.  He is also calling on the president to meet with religious leaders to address, and pray about, the issues facing the country, including the continued partisan gridlock that has prevented the country from moving forward as a whole.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

50th Anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington Remembered at U.S. Capitol

Hopeful About the Future, Determined to Act to Strengthen Democracy

Rep. John Lewis, House and Senate speakers Nancy Pelosi and John Boehner, joining at the U.S. Capitol building, put politics aside on Wednesday to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington.

[Video here].

Fifty years ago civil rights leaders and advocates marched on Washington in an event that lead to the passage of civil rights legislation that ended Jim Crow and began the modern era of civil rights.

Also attending, and speaking at the occasion, was Sen. Harry Reid who recounting his experience on the day said,  "These proud people would no longer stand silent while a nation that promised liberty and justice for all denied true freedom to so many."

"When I look back on the March on Washington I see it as one of this nation's finest hours.  They [activists] pushed, pulled and some even died to see a more fair and just society, said Rep. Lewis. 

In 1963 Lewis was just twenty-three years old when he helped lead the march along with Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Lewis, remembering the countless individuals who fought through the civil injustices of a nation recounted the actions of Bull Connor who, as a public safety official, allowed police dogs and fire hoses to be used on peaceful demonstrators in Birmingham, Alabama.

"Those in the movement met and decided that those ideas must not prevail", Lewis said.

On August 24th, the Rev. Al Sharpton will also help celebrate of the 59th anniversary of the March with a day-long event beginning at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC to show solidarity against the recent attack on voter rights, against Stand Your Ground and racial profiling, and to continue to raise awareness on unemployment, poverty, gun violence, immigration, gay rights and other critical issues affecting today's society.

17 MLK Quotes You Never Hear