Tom McLaughlin

A former history teacher, Tom is a columnist who lives in Lovell, Maine. His column is published in Maine and New Hampshire newspapers and on numerous web sites. Email: tommclaughlin@fairpoint.net

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Pressure Is Building


Is America is at risk of boiling over? Peggy Noonan, former speechwriter for the President Reagan, now columnist for The Wall Street Journal, believes it is. I don’t like to think about it but the danger is there. Noonan is not the alarmist type. She’s even-tempered and intuitive about Americans, and that’s why she was able to write speeches for President Reagan that tapped the American psyche. When she writes something like this, I pay attention.

She says “Americans no longer assume that their children will have it better than they did. This is a huge break with the past, with assumptions and traditions that shaped us.” Do Americans think we’ve peaked? That we’re going downhill now?

She identified a gap between what our elites think our country needs and what ordinary Americans believe it needs. She claims there’s a “growing gulf between the country's thought leaders, as they're called—the political and media class, the universities—and those living what for lack of a better word we'll call normal lives on the ground in America. The two groups were agitated by different things, concerned about different things, had different focuses, different world views.”

She’s absolutely right. Americans have voted over and over on referenda that they want the federal government to control illegal immigration, but elites call them “xenophobic.” When citizens in the states vote against supporting illegal aliens in schools, hospitals, welfare offices, in bilingual programs and so forth, they’re called “racists.” She cites the situation in Arizona: “The point of view of our thought leaders is, in general, that borders that are essentially open are good, or not so bad. The point of view of those on the ground who are anxious about our nation's future, however, is different, more like: ‘We live in a welfare state and we've just expanded health care. Unemployment's up. Could we sort of calm down, stop illegal immigration, and absorb what we've got?’ No is, in essence, the answer.”
Nogales, Arizona border

Rather than closing the border, the Obama Administration sued Arizona for usurping the authority of Washington even though Washington was refusing to exercise that authority. Then a federal judge ruled that the Arizona law - even though it mirrors federal law - violates the US Constitution. Unbelievable.

Then there’s California’s Proposition 8. The elites say homosexuals have a constitutional right to marry each other. California’s citizens passed Proposition 8 in 2008 - an amendment to their state constitution restricting marriage to one man and one woman. Then a homosexual federal judge ruled last week that the amended California Constitution violates the US Constitution. As if George Washington, John Adams, James Madison, and Thomas Jefferson believed men had a right “marry” each other? As if ordinary Americans who have voted in thirty-four state referenda to preserve a basic, 5000-year-old human concept are “homophobic”?

Last week, the State of Missouri voted 71% that Washington cannot force them to buy health insurance from anyone. Congressional Democrats knew most Americans felt that way, but they voted to ram it down our throats anyway. US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid pooh-poohed the Missouri vote, insisting that the “trend is turning” and Americans will soon embrace Obamacare.


You’re in La-La Land Harry.

Back in March of 2009, Texas Governor Rick Perry talked about secession in the face of the encroaching power of Washington. Several other states are discussing nullification - ignoring dictates from Washington - because they believe the Constitution doesn’t grant Congress or the President power to do what they want. Democrat Congressman Pete Stark told people at a “townhall” meeting in his district last week that “The federal government, yes, can do most anything in this country.”
Pampered radical students from the 60s ad 70s are now running not only our universities and our mainstream media, but also our government. These dedicated followers of Saul Alinsky have taken over Washington. As Victor Davis Hanson puts it: “One walk across the Yale or Stanford campus circa 1975, and one could see pretty clearly what sort of culture that bunch would create when it came of age and was handed power.” They’re smugly imposing their bankrupt socialist policies on states and the states are rebelling.

There is indeed the “chasm” existing between the elites and the rest of us on the ground as Noonan describes. Ordinary Americans who know how things work in the real world because they actually keep the country running on the job sites every day have had enough. If citizens cannot use the democratic process to express their will without being thwarted and insulted by screwball federal judges at every turn, America will indeed boil over.

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15 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you again, Mr. McLaughlin, for bringing us helpful information. I appreciate the gathering of useful stories and insights, and then sharing them. I see a collision coming with the heavy-handed thugs of the Feds with ordinary, patriotic citizens who want to preserve their freedoms and even regain those freedoms which have been previously. The Feds have encroached long enough and the match is nearly to the fuse, when armed conflict will likely be necessary - a revolution, if you may - to regain and preserve what is enshrined in our beloved Constitution.

8/11/10, 9:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems likely, as the commentary relates, that the pot is boiling over because the "system" is broken. The "system" is what is supposed to allow us to elect public servants who look out for our interests, not their interests. When the system no longer protects us and our rights, the system will have to change.

8/11/10, 10:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great piece,Tom! Thanks!

And to paraphrase former sports commisioner Tagliabue, ...it's a good system. The problem is, monkeys run the system".

Show Low Yaqui

8/11/10, 10:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The "Brave New World" is coming.
I read Mr. Huxley's novel in my early 20's and it was great Science Fiction. Re-reading it in my 70's it is a frightening possible future history. The changes are subtle and gradual but you can see them if you open your mind. It should be required reading. It can happen. I just hope I come back as an "Alpha".

8/11/10, 5:36 PM  
Anonymous DAWN said...

I think Washington is truly the land of la-la. Maybe we need to just nuke it and start fresh. They're catching some sort of highly contagious virus breathing in that putrid air on Capitol Hill and taking it home infecting their own.

Whatever it is, it's affecting their senses. They don't seem to hear well for one thing.

8/11/10, 10:47 PM  
Anonymous Alex said...

How is imposing your will and beliefs on another couple's rights a Constitutionally-given freedom?

8/11/10, 11:30 PM  
Blogger Laurie4rep.com said...

BINGO Tom You hit the nail on the head! WE THE PEOPLE no longer matter...but please keep sending us the "fruit of your labor"..we are becoming the slaves of an elite government. Support those who say NO COMPROMISE to these progressives. Laurie4rep.com

8/12/10, 8:39 AM  
Anonymous DAWN said...

"How is imposing your will and beliefs on another couple's rights a Constitutionally-given freedom?"

Alex:

Do you ask yourself that when you click on your seatbelt?

or how about the photographer that was fined thousands of dollars because she politely declined to work a homosexual wedding? Her religious belief was against such a union yet the judge didn't see it that way. What about her constitutionally given freedom?

8/12/10, 4:07 PM  
Anonymous Alex said...

Dawn:
I agree with you on both of those (or at least what I believe your opinions are on those issues). If you are stupid enough to drive without a seatbelt on, it's your fault if you crash and end up injured or dead. That's a personal choice. If you refuse to photograph a wedding, for any reason, that's another personal choice. I don't understand why the couple would want such a bigoted person at their wedding in any case. If anything, I feel that both things you mention strengthen my case.

8/12/10, 9:41 PM  
Anonymous DAWN said...

"I don't understand why the couple would want such a bigoted person at their wedding in any case."

Alex, you know I love ya, but I have to say...

This type of response is very typical of a defeated cause. Silenced in argument turns into personal abuse via nicknames, insulting epithets and even sometimes violent language.

It's very common and as old as the hills. I'm teaching John 8 to a group here and when Jesus spoke to the religious muckymucks and challenged them they responded by calling him a Samaritan having a devil and did not answer the questions posed to them.

One thing that stays constant is human nature. It never changes so I'm not surprised that you would call people like me bigoted because we are not buying what the current culture is trying to sell. Truth never changes, but the culture always does.

8/13/10, 11:53 AM  
Anonymous Alex said...

Dawn,
I don't believe I insulted you at all. And I would hardly call my argument "defeated" or "silenced". I believe that I agreed with your thoughts, and used them towards my own point. My exact words were, "I agree with you on both of those." I then proceeded to qualify what you said. You, on the other hand, did not give me anything against my argument.

I did call the photographer bigoted (was this you? Your comments seem to say that it was. If it was, I am sorry that you were fined for a ridiculous reason). Webster's defined a bigot as "a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices." This photographer is so deep-seated in her beliefs, so arrogant, that she refused to recognize the love of two individuals for one another. I do consider that bigoted.

What I should have said, however, is that the couple should not have cared. If the photographer did not agree with their love, then that's her problem. Find another photographer.

8/13/10, 5:34 PM  
Anonymous DAWN said...

"This photographer is so deep-seated in her beliefs, so arrogant, that she refused to recognize the love of two individuals for one another. I do consider that bigoted."

It's not one way Alex. It cuts both ways. You call anyone going against this agenda bigoted, intolerant and even arrogant.

Well what about the other side? They are just as intolerant of the opposition. They are just as bigoted and just as arrogant.

Nothing is more arrogant than going against a majority vote.

Let me remind you of the first three words of the U.S. Constitution.."We the People."

The Homosexual Judge overturning the ruling of Prop 8 showed more arrogance and intolerance than anyone. It was never supposed to be "I the Judge." It was always supposed to be "We The People."

So who are they to say they are above the U.S. Constitution?

8/14/10, 12:12 PM  
Anonymous Alex said...

Was William Lloyd Garrison a bigot? Was Elizabeth Cady Stanton a bigot? Were the abolitionists arrogant? Why yes, actually, they were. Did these people go against the majority? Yes, yes they did.

This conversation is leading us to declare that anyone who holds strong opinions is a bigot. In this respect, Jesus was a bigot, and arrogant. I mean no offense with this, but it is a matter of fact that it takes arrogance against the majority to change things. This is especially true when it comes to cases of human and civil rights. You cannot go with the majority in any case dealing with the rights of individuals. This is because the majority will always be vehemently opposed. When you are raised in a society that treats blacks as second-class citizens, why even question their humanity? When you are raised in a Judeo-Christian society that places archaic traditions over love, it is easy to slip into a mentality that shackles the oppressed.

On an interesting note, the most obvious references to homosexuality in the Bible are in the Old Testament. I know from listening to you, Dawn, that Jesus abolished many of the laws laid down in the Old Testament in Acts. Proponents of gay marriage who are ignorant of the Bible point to those passages in Deuteronomy that prohibit the eating of shellfish, etc. You always tell them that Yahweh placed those laws to protect the Israelites, and were practical, given the time period. My question is: is it possible that the ban on homosexuality was such a law? Obviously God's view was to promote the growth of his followers. If he "banned" homosexuality, could it have been to ensure that the population of worshippers grew? It would be like the shellfish; in the early days, the population would have been at risk if its members died eating bad food. The population would obviously be at risk from having members not procreating.

This is just a way of looking at it, I guess. I have immense respect for the amount of time you have spent studying the Bible, and am attempting to start the same journey. I will be looking from the viewpoint of a skeptic, but I am sure I will find bountiful knowledge.

And, on the lighter side, have you still been running? Though I have graduated, pre-season with Coach Reilly starts early tomorrow morning... I may have to drop in to re-live the good times!

8/15/10, 10:15 PM  
Anonymous DAWN said...

"On an interesting note, the most obvious references to homosexuality in the Bible are in the Old Testament.

If he "banned" homosexuality, could it have been to ensure that the population of worshippers grew? "

Alex, no, it's all thru the NT as well and whenever you see that it means it was worth repeating and is constant. Jesus himself made it clear that marriage was between a man and a woman with his own lips. Go to Romans 1 for a very clear passage given to the church.

The reason behind this is because it takes both male and female coming together as one to bear the image of God. When you have a man and a man coming together in marriage it distorts this picture. From God's POV it's an abomination and the ultimate wickedness of mankind. Many, as I do, believe it's the downfall and the ultimate act that will destroy a culture.

God has both male and female characteristics. Man alone does not adequately reflect the image alone. We read about God being a judge, supreme leader, strongtower, powerful etc that reflects masculine qualities. Then we read about him being loving, protective, forgiving tenderhearted, full of mercy and grace and we think more of female characteristics.

Marriage is ordained by God and is to reflect his image completely. That's why we're here to begin with. In the NT Christ is called the bridegroom and the church his bride. There are alot of marriage analogies given in scripture.

Jesus could only be called arrogant or a bigot by those who are trying to distort his Word and change his commands. He would be considered intolerant because He said himself "I am the way,the truth and the life."

In the end it really comes down to following him or following mankind. And that, Alex, is as old as the hills. :)

And yes, I'm running but also biking heavy duty miles and swimming some. My legs today are toast! I think you know how this feels.

I can't believe you graduated already. Time flies. I'm on FB so feel free to look me up and stay in touch!

8/16/10, 10:38 AM  
Blogger Michael said...

Tom, I have to agree that it is boiling over. I think the only question that remains is whether the Fed takes over the states or the states take over the Fed. Bottom line is that government is too big, has its hands in too many pots, and the politicians cater too much to special interest rather than the general public.

8/16/10, 12:28 PM  

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