President Trump’s Egomania Shuts Down Teenage Girls Animated Kitten Web Site

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE MERCURY NEWS)

President Donald Trump has had a lot on his plate in recent weeks — defending his administration from news of a criminal investigation by the FBI for alleged Russia collusion, rallying support for a controversial health care bill.

Somehow amid all that, the president, or his lawyers acting on their own, decided to go after a teenage girl from San Francisco, the Hollywood Reporter said.

Apparently, America’s commander in chief took issue with the girl’s website Kittenfeed.com. Originally called Trumpscratch.com, the site allows users to punch an animated image of Trump’s face with tiny kitten paws. It comes with the tagline: “Trump seems very tough at first but he gets weaker with every scratch.”

The girl, identified as “Lucy,” told the Observer that she developed the site, with its #Trumpcat hashtag, for fun while applying for web developer jobs. Little did she know that her site, which only drew 1700 visitors after its launch in February, had attracted the notice of the most important political leader on earth.

On March 1, she said she received a cease and desist letter from The Trump Organization. The letter claims her site infringed on the “internationally known and famous” Trump trademark.

After Lucy changed the domain name, she received another letter from the Trump Organization because her site linked to an anti-Trump shirt that is available for purchase on Amazon. Lucy told the Hollywood Reporter that she removed the link, and hasn’t heard anything from the campaign since.

Lucy is not alone in thinking that the president should have better things to with his time than to ask his lawyers to go after a teenager for creating a silly website.

“I really just want people to be aware that this is a president who’s clearly more concerned about what people think of him than doing things of substance,” she told the Hollywood Reporter.


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However, she said she’s not surprised he might be so easily provoked by her site, given that he wages Twitter feuds with former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger over ratings for his former reality TV show “Celebrity Apprentice.”

“Literally all my site is, is punching him with kitten paws,” she said. “A president should not have the time or care to hire people to shut sites like mine down. He should be running the country, not tweeting about TV ratings or anything else like that.”

Not surprisingly, the moves by Trump’s lawyers have had the opposite effect of their intention. After the Observer originally published its report on Tuesday, the site’s visitors surged from 3,000 to 50,000.

However, the site was down on Wednesday, possibly from so many users trying to access it.

The lesson here is that Trump may talk a tough game as president, but he and his tough, high-priced attorneys are no match for animated kittens.

Caring And Charity From A Biblical Christian View Point

 

Caring, it should be a deep, loving, kind thing, a way of life. Just as a lack of caring shows a deeply troubled hurt filled way to live and these two are not compatible within one home, or within one Soul. A caring person is usually a kind and loving type of person. Yet a person who is self-centered and egotistical by their nature tends to be a person who is down on the world around them, they tend to be people who think very little or nothing at all about how they treat other people or animals, or even themselves. I am not a doctor but to me, this sounds a lot like the building blocks to depression issues. The Lord wants all people to be good, decent and kind to each other. The Lord wants us all to treat people of all tongues, races and beliefs like they are our brothers and sisters if these people will allow such to be. Do you remember the ‘Golden Rule’? Friend, it does not say ‘do unto others before they have a chance to do unto you.’

 

The Lord tells us all to be a person who is charitable, to gives alms to the poor, if you don’t know what alms means it is simple, it means food, clothing, a place to stay and even some money when we can. Charity is caring about the people in your Church, your family, town, state and Country and even toward people in other Countries. It is an old saying that charity begins at home for if you are a person who turns a blind eye toward helping your own family members and people close to your home, is any charity you give to other people in other Nations without sin? But in your charity do not be taken advantage of by people who could work, who are healthy enough to work, but refuse to do so for they are worse than a non believer in your own Church family, remember folks, if a man will not work, neither shall he eat. The Lord has never said that He wants His disciples to be lazy, to lay around on their backside while begging or stealing from those who do work. If a person’s nature is that of caring and are charitable they seem to have a love filled, light filled, quiet self-assured ora about themselves. Think about this for a moment, a Christian is a person that is indwelled by the Holy Spirit of God Himself so our lives should be one of His light and His love. Without love, is there really caring and charity in their lives?

 

I am not saying nor is it true that all of the kind, good, honest, caring, charity filled people on Earth are Christians for that is not at all so. There are people of all Faiths and religious beliefs and even some people of no Faith system at all who are good, honest, hard-working, caring, charitable people, but these traits, these ‘works’ does not save our Soul at our judgement time. Remember folks what the Apostle Paul told us, that faith without works is dead, just as works without faith our works are  dead. Every single person who is a Christian is supposed to be a light unto the world, a light that one does not try to hide from the world. Would this be saying that every Christian is supposed to be a role model whether they wish to be or not? The world is full of darkness as the Devil and His tens of thousands of Angels roam this world at will looking for anyone that they can destroy. If we walk outside in the darkness with a lit lantern, the world will see that light and many will gravitate toward that light and this Light is the Lord.

 

Any person, community, or Nation can not fully serve two different Masters, we can not serve God and serve the Devil at the same time, it is not possible. People can pretend to care about you or your family, they can even be charitable and may even do some charity work but this does not mean that they are a Christian, even if they smile a lot and confess themselves to be. The people who are around us each day know what the truth is about whom we serve. If a person is just a Sunday Christian, they are not a Christian. Think about it, the people we work with each day, our neighbors, friends and families, they see the ‘true’ us. We do not have to be one who pushes religion on other people, we don’t need to be yelling sermons from the street corners to try to prove that we are a Christian. The daily lives we lead show those around us that we are different from ‘the world’. If we don’t curse or tell dirty jokes or steal or lie, those around us notice that we are different and those tend to be the same people who gravitate toward the ‘Light’ that you are showing daily. But, if we are ones that confess to be a Christian yet we act no different from how the people of ‘the world’ act we turn ourselves into the “lukewarm water'” the Lord spoke of to the Apostle John in the book of Revelation. Now think about it, if those around us can see through our fake Christianity do you honestly believe that God can’t see straight through us?

 

Throughout the New Testament we are told over and over again that the harvest is ready and that we as Christians must produce. Any tree that produces no fruit shall be cut down and cast into the fire. Friends, we cannot hide our ‘talents’ in the sand until the Lord returns. Look at how caring and charity and love brings people closer to each other. If you woke up late at night and you noticed that your neighbor’s home next door was on fire and you knew that their whole family was asleep inside but you just went back to bed because it wasn’t your house, not your family, not your problem, and that family all died do you think that man’s laws would leave you at peace if they knew what you had done? When we do not try to keep our friends, neighbors, coworkers and family from the fires of Hell because we just didn’t want to put out the effort do you really think that God will hold us blameless when we are at the Judgement Seat of Christ?

 

As I said earlier there are a lot of really good people in the world today, people of every Nation, skin color and tongue who are not Christians yet they are daily looking for the meaning of life. There are people around us each day who are caring, loving, charity filled individuals who do not have the Light of Christ within them. If we do not live a Holy Spirit led lifestyle around them, if we do not show them the Light of Christ within us and they die without Christ, their blood will be required of us at our own Judgement. Let us all be truthful to our own selves for a moment please. When it comes to our own faith, are we just sitting on our hands, doing little to nothing? Do we really care about anyone? Honestly, do we really even care about our own families? Friends, if we don’t then we are condemning our own selves to Hell. It is not the Devil doing it, nor is it God doing it, it is us, our own selves that is doing it through our own lack of faith. The Lord knows all of us, He knows exactly why we do or do not do things, there is no way we are going to be able to fool God and quite honestly only a fool would try to.

 

In the book of Matthew 10:38-39 it says “He that does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me. He that finds his own life shall lose it. And he that loses his life for my sake shall find it.”

1 Corinthians 15:58 “Therefore my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the works of the Lord. For as much as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”

2 Corinthians 5:10 “For we must all appear before the Judgement Seat of Christ,  that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.”

Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone that says unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but he that does the will of My Father which is in Heaven.”

Now the last Scripture passage I will use tonight goes like this, it is from 1 Peter 4:7-8

“But the end of all things is at hand: Be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: For charity shall cover a multitude of sins.”

 

This article tonight is just an effort to try to get each of us to thinking outside our human box we tend to put ourselves in so that hopefully when we are put in a pine box we aren’t likely to get awakened by a hot pitchfork.

Rape: Is There Such A Thing As A ‘Culture’ Of Rape?

 

A couple of days ago one of our fellow Word Press Bloggers ( chanportuguesa.wordpress.com ) left me a comment about an article I had reblogged a couple of weeks before. The article I had reblogged was out of Portugal and the content matter was about a 67-year-old homeless woman who was raped and beaten by a ‘refugee’ who was from North Africa. The article said this man who is in his twenties was a person that was supposed to have been sent to Italy but Italy refused to let him in so Portugal ended up having to keep him. The articles spoke of how messed up Portugal’s political system is in that their own citizens like this 67-year-old woman were having to sleep in the streets yet the government was giving food, clothing and housing to refugees. I know that this is exactly how things are done here in the U.S. so what he was saying sounds familiar as this is how our government has operated for decades now.

 

The following comment is the reason that I thought to do this article today, they make a very good point and I promised I would do this article concerning his comment. When I had posted this reblogged article I had made a comment about the ‘rape culture’ concerning the ‘refugee’, here is the quote. “I am curious to know which culture is that? What  is your though on this article? French troops raped starving children in Central Africa.” Before I started this article I decided to look up the word rape in the online dictionary to see exactly how it is defined, the following is what it had to say. “Rape: origin of rape: Middle English/Anglo-French/Latin from 1250-1300 A.D..” Noun: unlawful sexual intercourse or any other sexual penetration of the vigina, anus, or mouth of another person, with or without force, by a sex organ or other body part, or foreign object, without the consent of the victim.” The article said that this young man beat her in the face breaking several facial bones and he forced sex upon her. To me, it does sound like this young man without a doubt is guilty of what could be described as a ‘text book’ rape of this poor old lady, but this is just my opinion, others may somehow have a different opinion though.

 

Our fellow Blogger said at the end of his comment “French troops raped starving children in Central Africa.” This may be true, it may not, I do not personally know one way or the other. If this has happened it would not surprise me though. It does seem that I remember reading an article or two about a year ago where such things were mentioned, but were those articles truthful, I wasn’t there, I do not know. I also remember reading articles over the past few years where U.N. troops were blamed for this exact same crimes/sins. Were those true? Unfortunately it sounded like it was. I know that in many cultures during armed conflicts that soldiers from many different countries have used rape as a weapon against the people they are fighting against. Here in the States our ‘National Culture’ says that none of our troops would ever do such a thing, but there is always some tares among the wheat. To me, rape is a moral issue. Many will say I am wrong, it is only a physical issue, really, it is both. But if a person, soldier or not, is a moral person, they will not touch another person in this manner. What I am saying is that if a person is brought up in a religion that teaches that rape is a sin and the person who commits such a sin must be executed, a devout person of that religion will never do such harm to another person.

 

Now, back to this refugee in Portugal who raped and beat this 67-year-old homeless woman. I know that some people will jump to the conclusion that because he is from North Africa that I am coming down on African or upon Black culture, no, that is not correct. The culture I was referring to in this case is his religion which is that of Islam. I know that I just angered a lot of folks with that statement yet if you will keep reading for a couple more moments you will see more clearly why I have said that. Look at the street level of the Islamic countries, look at that culture concerning women, look at how they are treated. I know that there are some folks who believe in Islam who are educated and kind toward their wives and children so this is not a ‘blanket’ condemnation of Islam. There are good and bad people within every religion on Earth. But, think about this reality for a moment please. Think about the Islamic countries where a woman can not go out of her house without a male relative beside her. I have heard and read articles from Islamic men who believe that if a woman goes out of her house on her own she is just asking to be raped, why else would they go out alone they say. Even if they are hand in hand with their husband and they are showing more skin than a Burka allows, they are a whore. Is this a morality issue on the part of women? Or is it a maturity or moral fallacy of the men, or even of their religion that they were raised in?

 

There is no doubt that morality throughout the world is decreasing rapidly and not just in the Islamic world. Here in the States there was a time when women dressed much more modestly, and so did the men. There was a time when it was considered a sin if you could see a woman’s ankle below her dress and dresses with a v-neck which showed cleavage was scandalous. Yet there was also a time when the men always wore long-sleeved shirts and only long pants, no shorts were allowed and men never took off their shirts in public. Yet it is my assertion that those who sexually attack others are themselves very morally weak. Even if you come from a culture like Islam it is not okay for anyone to force themselves upon another person. It is an obvious truth that when you take Islamic men out of  an Islamic culture and place them in a culture like France, Italy, or Portugal that a huge amount of these morales adult male children think it is perfectly okay to assault ‘single’ women and even very young girls. The world is facing a moral decline yet this article today is only about the evil in the lack of sexual morals. We have also read several times during the past couple of years where in India where Hindu men have been gang raping young women and girls literally to death. It is rather common to hear of the rape cultures within the body of Africa where no religion seems to be at fault. Here in the States we usually only hear of cases where Priests commit these sins on young children.

 

No group is without sin because each group, each religion, is made up of individuals, we stand or fall on our individual merit, or the lack thereof. The reason that today’s article highlights the Islamic culture is because of their teachings. Not so much the teachings of the Quran which is a “Book of the Saying” of the Prophet Muhammad, the huge issues are concerning the Book called the “Hadith” which is the “actions” of the Prophet Muhammad. They are taught from birth that a ‘good’ believer must emulate the actions of their Prophet. Please read this book folks, their Prophet should be the very last person that any parent would ever want their child to act like. The people of Islam know these facts, they tend to try to hide this truth from ‘the western world’. If you really wish to understand why I believe Islam teaches its male followers to perform their lives with such violence toward everyone, especially women and young girls. I know of no other major ‘religion’ that tells their followers to be so violent toward other people that is why many folks I have spoken with do not even consider Islam to be a ‘religion’, they believe that it is no more than a Demonic Cult.

Mellow drivers? Study says states with medical-marijuana laws have lower traffic fatality rates.

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF ‘TRIPPING’ AND THE WASHINGTON POST)

Mellow drivers? Study says states with medical-marijuana laws have lower traffic fatality rates.

December 20

 

States with medical-marijuana laws have fewer traffic fatalities than those without, especially among younger drivers, a new study has found.

You would think crash rates might be higher, supposing that more drivers are, too — especially around midnight, when a run to a 7-Eleven becomes necessary.

But, no. Researchers at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health found an 11 percent reduction in traffic fatalities on average when examining places that have enacted medical-marijuana laws — 23 states and the District of Columbia. The presence of medical-marijuana dispensaries also correlated with fewer traffic fatalities, the study found.

Silvia Martins, a physician and associate professor who was the study’s senior author, theorized that lower traffic fatality rates in states with marijuana laws might be related to lower levels of alcohol-impaired driving as people, especially younger people, substitute weed for booze.

There was little evidence of a reduction in the traffic fatality rate for people 45 or older, who are disproportionately represented in larger numbers among enrollees in state medical-marijuana programs. The largest drop in traffic fatality rates in states with medical-marijuana laws occurred among drivers ages 15 to 44.

“We found evidence that states with the marijuana laws in place compared with those which did not, reported, on average, lower rates of drivers endorsing driving after having too many drinks,” Martins said in a written statement. She said other factors that might help explain the correlation could be the “strength of public health laws related to driving, infrastructure characteristics, or the quality of health care systems.”

The researchers cautioned, however, that not all states with medical-marijuana laws experienced declines in traffic fatality rates. California and New Mexico had initial reductions of 16 percent and 17.5 percent, respectively, after the passage of medical-marijuana laws but then saw gradual increases in their traffic fatality rates.

The study, which was published online in the American Journal of Public Health, analyzed National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data on traffic fatalities from 1985 to 2014. The researchers took into account factors such as whether the states had graduated driver licensing laws, as well as median household income, unemployment rates, laws increasing the speed limit to 70 mph or more, laws on enforcing the use of seat belts, and bans on using cellphones and texting while driving.

The researchers undertook the study as more states passed medical-marijuana laws — nine between 2010 and 2014 — and concerns were raised about the possible effect on public safety. Previous research, for example, found that marijuana use caused drivers to weave in traffic more often and have slower reaction times; studies also found that drivers who were high tended to reduce speed and increase headways — suggesting that the users were aware of their marijuana-related impairment and were trying to compensate.

Read more of Tripping:

I Hope I Am Wrong, But Here Is What President Trump Is Going To Do ‘To’ The Working Class Americans

 

I hope that I am wrong about this belief but I am writing this article, this note, to you today because I don’t think I am wrong. So that you won’t go off on the wrong thought direction I will tell you that I voted for Gary Johnson in the Presidential election last month. I am a registered Independent but that is not the reason I voted for Mr. Johnson. I voted for him because I knew he would not win, you see I just couldn’t get myself to vote for Mr. Trump or Mrs. Clinton. To me, both of those folks just had too much negative baggage about them in regards to what I believed they would bring to the Presidency for me to be able to vote for them. Mrs. Clinton had a track record of negatives while working in D.C., Mr. Trump had a lot of bad baggage but we the people could at least hope that everything coming out of his mouth wasn’t a lie. Now both of these candidates had some good ideas as does each of their Parties, but they also have some huge negatives.

 

With Mr. Trump after he won the election what I have been looking toward was whom were the people he was going to put into his Cabinet. We now know exactly where Mr. Trump’s mindset is as far as his campaign rhetoric about “making America great again.” Mr. Trump chose a Congressman from South Carolina to oversee the National Budget and how the Government’s  revenues will be spent. He just like the Republican Leadership in the House and the Senate are against Mr. Trump’s plan to rebuild the Nation’s infrastructure which has a preliminary estimate price tag of one trillion dollars. From being an over the road truck driver for thirty plus years I know first hand that this has been needed to be done for at least the past thirty years, of that I have no doubt. His new budget man though says no to this program, unless the Federal Government cuts a trillion dollars in ‘waste’ that it is now spending. The issue though is that to the Republicans ‘waste’ is things like the food stamp program, Social Security retirement and disability programs, Military retirement and VA disability programs, I believe you get the idea. Yet, you know that there is something that I have never once heard these Congressmen, Senators, or former Presidents talk about cutting and that is their lavish ‘amenities’ they are getting right now, or the lavish retirement packages they get when they retire or are voted out of office. Back when “war hero” George H.W.Bush was President he tried to turn over all of the Nation’s road systems to the States so that they could make every road in America a “toll” road. He wanted to do this to lessen the burden on the Federal Government. This has always puzzled me since the Federal Government receives billions of dollars in road use fuel taxes, I have always wondered where all those billions go every year since they are not being spent on the roads and bridges. Yet the biggest “show” of his support for wounded American Veterans was that while he was in Office he tried to save money by cutting the cost of the VA. The issue is, that he wanted to make it to where for a Service Connected Veteran to be able to get care at the VA they had to be a minimum of %50 Service Connected, wait for it, he also was trying to get it to where for a wounded Veteran to get %50 they had to be at the very least a quadriplegic (no working arms or legs). Sorry about being sidetracked there, it just disgusts me how pathetic these pariah can be.

 

Now, back to our current President Elect, Mr. Trump. Mr. Trump has made it no secret that he believes that the Federal minimum wage is too high. This is the reason why he has had and is having everything with his name on it, not counting buildings obviously, he has made in ‘offshore’ countries where slave wages are the norm. Plus these countries do not have the EPA regulations for their companies to worry about. The reality is the richer the people the less they give a flip about the poorest of the poor, it is always all about how much profit they can put into their own pocket. Besides, there are billions of dirt poor starving people, why should they care if billions of them die? You will know that in public statements they will say they do, but in the closed-door boardrooms of these international companies, do you really believe that is their opinion there? Think about it, as soon as a company that is on the open market boards says they are laying off workers, their stock values go up at once. When a company on the Stock Market says they are closing a factory in the U.S. and moving it to Mexico, Honduras, or China, the value of their stock goes up. Even the soon to be ‘First Daughter’ learned this from her Daddy, look at where her products are all made, hint, it’s not in the U.S..

 

Mr. Trump says that he is going to cut the Corporate tax rate from its current %35 to %15 to help stimulate companies profits. He also says he is going to punish companies that move their jobs ‘offshore’ by putting a huge tariff like %35 on all the products they then try to bring back into the States to sell here. As an Independent, I do not have a problem with either of these programs, I believe that Companies need to be strong financially for them to expand and to create new jobs. My issue is that Mr. Trump is very anti-Union and he is in favor of lowering the minimum wage. So, if his policies are designed to cut the welfare programs and put people back to work, are these jobs really actually going to pay a livable wage? Remember, Mr. Trump thinks that the folks at Carrier in Indianapolis are losing their jobs because they are making too much money and that Carrier was needing to move their factories to Mexico because of cheaper wages and benefits there. Mr. Trump has also told the workers in the American Auto Industry that they are making too much money that they need to take pay cuts. Mr. Trump talks about how a former steelworker who lost their job because of unfair labor laws in China and is now flipping burgers knows about the good jobs disappearing here in America. Well, my question to Mr. Trump is if you help bring back the steelworkers job to America but he has to work for 6 or 7 dollars per hour with no benefits, no overtime pay and no OSHA or EPA regulations to help keep them safe and alive how are they any better off than flipping burgers for at McDonald’s or working a register at Wal-Mart?

 

I know this is not going to happen, but here is a solution to some semblance of income equality. Right now there is no cap on how much the top end of a company’s executives can earn, the limits are only on the working class and those limits are put into place by the top end. So, Congress should pass a federal law where there can not be more than a 100 times income difference law on all companies and this would have to include total packages, stocks, bonds, benefits, insurances ect. This is where whatever the lowest paid person in the company makes, no one in the company can make more than 100 times that amount. As I said, it will never happen because it is those same top end folks that bribe the Congressmen and Senators to make sure that it never happens. This is a humanity issue, yes it is an income equality issue also, but for any Country to survive then there must be a vibrant middle class and a system where the lowest end of the financial scale has an honest chance to work their way up into that middle class. If we do not correct the current trends of only the wealthiest being able to afford a humane life style we are seeing the signs now where America is going to fall apart from the inside. By the choices Mr. Trump is making for his Cabinet I don’t believe he gives a flip about the American working class, his picks are showing that he only cares about the top 1/10 of 1%. I believe that to put it in layman’s terms, for the next two years there may begin to be more jobs but they are not likely to be livable wage jobs. The reason I said two years is because if I am correct and this is what happens, in two years the Republicans will lose the House and the Senate and in four years Mr. Trump will go back to his vacation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Son He Doesn’t Have To Be

 

Have you ever been a step-parent? Have you ever been a stepchild? I grew up in a house where I had both of my biological parents there. Did you notice that I did not use the word ‘home’, that I simply said house? Just because I had both of my biological parents living within the same four walls as I did, this did not mean that it was automatically a ‘home’. I had a great Mom but my Dad was severely lacking in his human skills. I left home at 17 because of how much of a hell-hole he made of our family life. He died when I was 37 and it took me till I was about 40 before I could forgive him of his ways toward me. Only when I was able to say to myself that he really was an ‘a–hole’ and that he also was mentally ill before I was able to forgive him. I know that I asked my Mom a couple of times before she died if Dad really was my Dad, asking her if maybe Dad thought that I really wasn’t his as I was trying to find a way to come to grips with how horribly he treated me and if there really was a ‘why’ that made any sense. I thought that if maybe he thought that I really wasn’t his, that if he thought Mom had cheated on him that this might be the reason he was such an a– toward me but she told me no both times about the issue. There is an old term about ‘beating you like you’re a redheaded step child’ that might come into play with me but that wasn’t it, I am of his own blood. I brought this up because I was the only blonde child and the only left-handed child, so I thought, well maybe. I did not ever experience a step-parent situation even though I honestly felt having no Dad in our house would have been much better than having a hate filled drunken maniac dominating our household.

I grew up determined not to be anything like my Dad’s example of a human being though I did make many parenting mistakes of my own. I married a lady in Texas who had a son who was 11 at the time we met and married, he is now 46 and married with a child/son of his own and as far as I know he is a great Dad who loves his son very much. 17 years ago I remarried to a lady in Florida who had a son who was 6 at the time, his biological Dad had committed suicide when he was 4. This son was a bit difficult because he didn’t believe or understand that both of us really did love him. He was about 16 before he actually ‘got it’, once he did see that light he now for the past 7 years has become a great child to both of us, especially to me. He is now 23 and a year ago his Mom and I bought a house that has a full 3 bedroom 1 bath apartment with a ‘walkout’ basement. One of the big factors in buying this house was so that he could live there if he wanted to, and he did.

Ten years ago his Mom and I would never have thought he could come so far in his development as a person, as an adult.  I am sure that none of the three of us would have thought that after he turned 18 that he would want anything to do with us or quite frankly us to do with him. What changed him? I believe it was him coming to the understanding of the fact that he really was loved, by both of us. He is a grown man now, there is nothing that says he has to live in this basement apartment, he chooses to. A couple of years ago he told me something that really stuck in my heart, that meant a whole lot to me. He told me, “Dad, all the good that is in me is because of you”. When a child you have raised loves you even when they are adults and there is nothing that says they have to do so or to even pretend that they do, that is very gratifying to one’s Soul. About 20 or so odd years ago there was a Country Music song that came out called “the Dad he doesn’t have to be” about a man stepping into a marriage with a woman who had a son already and how this man performed his role as a Dad. I am blessed to have two sons who were not biological to me that still love me, even though they do not have any obligation to have to do so. This is why the title of this note to you “the son he doesn’t have to be.” I am a strong believer in blood family yet I have learned that blood alone does not guarantee they will love you. I have also learned that someone who is not blood to you can still absolutely be “family” and love you even more that those who are blood to you do.

Biblical Wisdom for Divisive Times—Like Now

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE INTERNATIONAL FELLOWSHIP OF CHRISTIANS AND JEWS)

Biblical Wisdom for Divisive Times

November 17, 2016

Dear Friend of Israel

During my recent travels through the U.S., I’ve learned how deeply and profoundly Americans have been affected by the recent election. Last week, people of all political persuasions were glued to televisions and computers waiting for the results. Now, more than a week later, we’re still glued to our screens, reading the opinions of politicians and pundits as they discuss how President-elect Trump’s policies may change the country, and the world.

Of course, it is good and right to be concerned about politics. But there comes a time that we must tear ourselves away from our screens and focus on deeper things. For me, the Psalms have a wonderful way of putting things in perspective, of giving us that deeper, more complete view of the challenges we face, both personally and as a nation. Perhaps it’s their honesty – their willingness to address God personally in both good times and bad – that has brought me back to these ancient Hebrew prayers time and again.

The Psalmist sings praises to God’s glory, cries out to Him from the depths of his despair, laments what he believes to be God’s absence from his life, and even freely expresses his doubts before God. And the Psalms don’t just voice our emotions; they remind us of God’s character. In them, we come to know God as Creator, Sustainer, Healer, and Redeemer.

The themes of God’s power and sovereignty are evident in Psalm 76 and Psalm 8. They were meaningful in biblical times because then, as today, Israel was surrounded by fierce foes bent on her destruction. Psalm 76 serves as a sobering reminder of God’s power. It leaves no question that it is God alone who rules the earth. It speaks of the invincibility of God in battle, and the futility of trying to stand against Him and His chosen people.

Psalm 8 uses the personal name of God that He gave to Moses at the burning bush (Exodus 3:14): Yahweh, the God of Israel’s covenant. God’s majestic name is wonderfully appropriate to this psalm. God is personal in His interaction with His creation, being mindful of mankind and caring for us. And yet, He is also transcendent, the Master of creation Who rules over all.

This psalm reminds us to have a childlike sense of awe and wonder when it comes to the display of God’s glory. His great love for mankind is shown in that He cared enough to place us just beneath the angels in rank of creation.

It’s all too easy to become so immersed in the things of the world that we forget that God is our ultimate defender and protector. But these psalms remind us to have the proper attitude when coming before God. It is both exhilarating and humbling to know that He goes ahead of us in our challenges, and that we are objects of His affection and care.

May we always be awed by the things of God. And may we always be reminded of God’s power, and His sovereignty over all things.

With prayers for shalom, peace,


Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein
Founder and President

Hypocritic Democratic Protesters Rail At Trump For Him Being Honest About Them!

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)

President-elect Donald Trump complains about ‘unfair’ protesters as thousands of Americans take to the streets

Donald Trump sat down with President Obama before taking to Twitter to vent his frustration with how "unfair" he thinks the protesters are.

Donald Trump sat down with President Obama before taking to Twitter to vent his frustration with how “unfair” he thinks the protesters are.

(JIM WATSON/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

After a couple of unusually quiet days, Donald Trump was back to his campaign trail social media tactics Thursday evening, complaining about the thousands of “unfair” protesters demonstrating throughout cities across the country.”Just had a very open and successful presidential election,” Trump tweeted as scores of angry New Yorker’s gathered outside Trump Tower. “Now professional protesters, incited by the media, are protesting. Very unfair!”

The President-elect’s media bashing tweet comes on the heels of a cordial sit-down with President Obama at the White House earlier in the day. The incoming President said he had “great respect” for Obama and commended him on some of the “really great things” he has achieved.

After the meeting, Trump thanked the President for a “fantastic day” with “great chemistry.”

Rage is not the answer

Hundreds gathered outside Trump Tower Thursday to protest Trump's election win.

Hundreds gathered outside Trump Tower Thursday to protest Trump’s election win.

(SPENCER PLATT/GETTY IMAGES)

“Melania liked Mrs. O a lot!” he added, referring to First Lady Michelle Obama.

Trump has become notorious for frequently insulting politicians and journalists over Twitter, but since winning the election Wednesday, he has only sent out two uncharacteristically toned down tweets — one pledging to as President unify the country and another congratulating the Marine Corps on its 241st anniversary.

That spell of politeness broke Thursday, and Twitter users were quick to rip into the President-elect after his latest tirade.

The protesters toted signs and chanted outside the midtown skyscraper.

The protesters toted signs and chanted outside the midtown skyscraper.

(SAM COSTANZA/FOR NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)

“Here we go, again,” Republican strategist Ana Navarro said. “Trump tweeting against protestors & the media. Well, it was nice to see him be presidential for all of, what…40 hours?”

Anti-Trump protests resume for second night across U.S.

The chief strategist for Obama’s presidential campaigns, David Axelrod, also took a jab at the President-elect.

“Not a good look for the POTUS-elect,” he said. “Instead of reaching out, he reaches for his Twitter account. Again! Winners don’t whine. They heal.”

MANDATORY CREDIT; WASHINGTON EXAMINER OUT

Throngs of protesters in Baltimore blocked traffic outside the Ravens’ football stadium. (ARREST THEM FOR BREAKING THE LAWS OF OUR NATION, CHARGE THEM AND  PUT THEM IN JAIL!)(TRS)

(LLOYD FOX/THE BALTIMORE SUN VIA AP)

While Trump was tweeting, tensions remained high on the street outside his building, with hundreds of protesters chanting “we reject the President-elect” and “not our President.”

Paula Sternitzky, 54, of Brooklyn, came to the protests toting a sign emblazoned with the words “F–k Trump” alongside an unflattering hand drawn portrait of the soon-to-be commander-in-chief.

VIDEO: Trump, Obama sit down in historic White House meeting

“Tuesday evening was shock, Wednesday morning it was complete fear,” Sternitzky told the Daily News about her reaction to the election results. “I’m genuinely scared about what a President Trump could do to this country.”

Verane Frediani, 42, of Lille, France, was visiting the city for a couple of days, and said she came to the protest to show that Trump’s election upset is sending shock waves beyond U.S. borders.

“We have the extreme right as well so I think it’s important to come out and show that this is a problem,” Frediani told The News, referencing the controversial leader of France’s National Front party, Marine Le Pen, who was among the first European politicians to congratulate Trump on his win. “We’re breathing the same political air and everything he said about immigrants, about women — it’s not okay.”

Meanwhile, some 600 protesters outraged over the outcome of the election marched to the M&T Bank Stadium where the Ravens were hosting the Cleveland Browns for Thursday Night Football.

LUPICA: Grace from Obama, Clinton and Trump after ugly campaigns

Woman throwing laundry detergent at protesters here at the march here in

 Throngs of demonstrators blocked traffic and lay down in the middle of roadways nearby the stadium, but otherwise remained peaceful. Police said at least two people were detained, but not charged, in the commotion.

Discontent with the President-elect turned violent in Portland, Ore., where officials announced around 9 p.m. local time that the protests had turned into “a riot” as demonstrators marched onto major highways.

“Due to extensive and criminal and dangerous behavior, protest is now considered a riot,” the Portland Police Department said in a tweet.

Hundreds of protesters in Washington, D.C. came out for a second night of protests.  

Hundreds of protesters in Washington, D.C. came out for a second night of protests.

(JOSHUA ROBERTS/REUTERS)

The Oregon Department of Transportation shut down traffic on portions of Interstate 5 and 84 as police tried to deescalate the situation.

Muslim women assaulted on campuses as fear of Islamophobia rises

A bizarre Twitter video showed a female motorist swinging at protesters and dousing them in laundry detergent after they blocked traffic on the Hawthorne Bridge near the city’s downtown area.

In another part of the city, a protester was arrested for hurling a Molotov cocktail into a bonfire and cops reported widespread vandalism, graffiti and street fires.

 Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti called the protests in his city "a beautiful expression of democracy." 

 Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti called the protests in his city “a beautiful expression of democracy.”

(AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

For the second night in a row, thousands of protesters marched through both Washington D.C. and Philadelphia, holding signs emblazoned with slogans like “Not Our President” and “Make America Safe For All.”

A large crowd gathered outside the Philly’s historic City Hall chanted, “We must remember to love ourselves and each other, not our President.”

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, a Democrat, condemned a “very, very small group of people” disrupting otherwise peaceful protests after 28 people were arrested for blocking traffic and vandalizing some buildings and a news truck.

Besides the arrests, Garcetti commended the protesters on exercising their democratic rights.

“I actually thought it was a beautiful expression of democracy,” Garcetti said at a news conference. “I think it was a marvelous thing to see the next generation of this country get engaged and involved.”

With News Wire Services

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The Only People Who Have Civil Rights Are Democrats And Minorities And No One Else?

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TIME NEWS)

Day Two of Anti-Trump Protests Puts Spotlight on Civil Rights-(So They Riot Against Other People Having Any Civil Rights)

Demonstrators Protest Against Donald Trump Presidency In Washington, DC
Leigh Vogel—Wire Image Demonstrators protest against President-elect Donald Trump in front of the White House in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 10, 2016

Critics worry that remarks Trump has made about Muslims, women and minority groups could provoke intolerance

Protests continued for a second day on Thursday as thousands of people took to the streets in opposition to President-elect Donald Trump, voicing concern that his administration could do damage to hard-won progress on civil liberties.

Security was tight at two of the real estate mogul’s signature high-rise properties in Washington, D.C., and New York City, which became rallying points Wednesday night, in the wake of his surprise defeat of Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton. Protesters approached the site chanting slogans such as “Love trumps hate,” a phrase used by Clinton throughout her campaign.

About 100 mostly young protesters gathered at the White House, where Trump had just concluded his first meeting with outgoing President Barack Obama, and marched to the foot of his newly erected Trump International Hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue, Reuters reports. In New York City, where 15 protesters were arrested Wednesday night, CNN reported that about 5,000 protesters were joined by Lady Gaga at Trump Tower.

Trump took to Twitter on Thursday to address his critics in his first public comments on the unrest, tweeting: “Just had a very open and successful presidential election. Now professional protesters, incited by the media, are protesting. Very unfair!”

On Wednesday, tens of thousands took to the streets in more than a dozen major cities to rally against the President-elect, many chanting “Not my President” and denouncing what they say is racist and misogynistic rhetoric used by his campaign. Protests swelled in Seattle; Pittsburgh; Austin; Dallas; Philadelphia; Portland; Providence, R.I.; Atlanta; St. Paul, Minn., as well as several other cities around the nation and the in other countries.

Trump’s critics worry that remarks he has made about Muslims, women and minority groups could provoke intolerance. His campaign has drawn support from the Ku Klux Klan and other white-supremacist groups, though he has publicly denied any links to them. His campaign turned down an endorsement from a KKK newspaper earlier this month, stating that Trump “denounces hate in any form.”

In his acceptance speech on Wednesday, Trump vowed to be a President for all Americans, striking a more conciliatory tone than he had in the past. His surprising ascension to power exposed sensitive divisions among the U.S.’s diverse communities and a gulf between the media and the public.

“This generation deserves better than Donald Trump,” Lily Morton, a 17-year-old student at Georgetown Day School in Washington, D.C., told Reuters. “The queer people, colored people, women, girls, everyone that is going to be affected by this, we need to protest to help them.”

Wednesday’s demonstrations were largely peaceful, though violence was reported in Oakland, Calif., where some demonstrators reportedly smashed store windows, started fires and clashed with police in riot gear. NBC said that Molotov cocktails were thrown at some 40 fires started. Three police officers were injured and 30 people arrested.

In Los Angeles, hundreds marched to U.S. Route 101 in an attempt to block the freeway.

Trump stunned Americans at home and abroad on Tuesday when he beat opponent Clinton following what has been considered the most polarized and fraught U.S. election in living memory. Clinton was widely expected to clinch the victory and become the first female President in U.S. history.

Throughout the campaign period, Trump came under fierce criticism for his zero-tolerance stance on immigration and remarks he has made about both women and minorities.

Saudi Arabia’s ‘Male Guardianship System’ Shows The Immaturity And Spiritual Weakness Of Their Men

(I FOUND THIS ARTICLE ON TWITTER UNDER ‘BOXED IN’)

Saudi Arabia, a woman’s life is controlled by a man from birth until death. Every Saudi woman must have a male guardian, normally a father or husband, but in some cases a brother or even a son, who has the power to make a range of critical decisions on her behalf.

As dozens of Saudi women told Human Rights Watch, the male guardianship system is the most significant impediment to realizing women’s rights in the country, effectively rendering adult women legal minors who cannot make key decisions for themselves.

Rania, a 34-year-old Saudi woman, said, “We are entrusted with raising the next generation but you can’t trust us with ourselves. It doesn’t make any sense.”

Every Saudi woman, regardless of her economic or social class, is adversely affected by guardianship policies.

Saudi Arabia’s male guardianship system remains the most significant impediment to women’s rights in the country despite limited reforms over the last decade.

Adult women must obtain permission from a male guardian to travel, marry, or exit prison. They may be required to provide guardian consent in order to work or access healthcare. Women regularly face difficulty conducting a range of transactions without a male relative, from renting an apartment to filing legal claims.

The impact these restrictive policies have on a woman’s ability to pursue a career or make life decisions varies, but is largely dependent on the good will of her male guardian. In some cases, men use the authority that the male guardianship system grants them to extort female dependents. Guardians have conditioned their consent for women to work or to travel on her paying him large sums of money.

Saudi Arabia’s male guardianship system remains the most significant impediment to women’s rights in the country despite limited reforms over the last decade.

Women’s rights activists in Saudi Arabia have repeatedly called on the government to abolish the male guardianship system, which the government agreed to do in 2009 and again in 2013 after its Universal Periodic Review (UPR) at the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Following both hearings, Saudi Arabia took limited steps to reform certain aspects of the guardianship system. But, these changes remain insufficient, incomplete, and ineffective; today, the guardianship system remains mostly intact.

Saudi Arabia’s male guardianship system remains the most significant impediment to women’s rights in the country despite limited reforms over the last decade.

Until the guardianship system is removed entirely, Saudi Arabia will remain in violation of its human rights obligations and unable to realize its Vision 2030, the country’s “vision for the future,” that declares women—half of the country’s population—to be a “great asset” whose talents will be developed for the good of the country’s society and economy.

Reforms

Saudi Arabia has made a series of limited changes over the last 10 years to ease restrictions on women. Notable examples include allowing women to participate in the country’s limited political space, actively encouraging women to enter the labor market, and taking steps to better respond to domestic violence.

For example, in 2013, then-King Abdullah appointed 30 women to the Shura Council, his highest advisory body. On December 12, 2015, authorities allowed women to participate in municipal council elections, with women voting and running as candidates for the first time in the country’s history. The elections were a significant, symbolic victory for women, particularly as many women had campaigned for this right for more than a decade.

In recent years, Saudi Arabia has also issued a range of decisions significantly increasing women’s access to the labor market, as part of a broader economic reform program aimed at decreasing the country’s reliance on oil. These include removing language in the labor law that previously restricted women’s work to certain fields “suitable to their nature,” and no longer requiring that woman have guardian permission to work. Authorities have provided incentives to employers to hire women and earmark certain positions for women and provided thousands of scholarships for women to study in universities abroad.

Saudi Arabia has also taken steps to better respond to violence against women and to provide women with better access to government services. In 2013, it passed a law criminalizing domestic abuse and, in 2016, established a center specifically tasked with receiving and responding to reports of family violence.

Saudi Arabia has also worked to improve women’s access to government services, including enabling women to secure their own ID cards; issuing to divorced and widowed women family cards, which specify familial relationships and are required to conduct a number of bureaucratic tasks; and removing requirements that a woman bring a male relative to identify them in court.

Limitations of Reforms

While the reforms are a step in the right direction, they remain partial and incomplete. The male guardianship system remains largely in place, hindering and in some cases nullifying the efficacy of these reforms.

As Hayat, 44, said, “I don’t believe we can change this in small steps. It is what is happening right now. We need a very brave call from the government to remove this [guardianship] and make it equal.”

While women now serve on the Shura Council and on municipal councils, these victories remain limited and authorities continue to curb women’s ability to participate in public life. Women made up less than 10 percent of the final list of registered voters for the December 15, 2015 elections.

Many women faced barriers linked to the guardianship system when registering to vote, such as a requirement to prove residency in their voting district—a difficult or impossible task for many women whose names are not generally listed on housing deeds or rental agreements—or a requirement to present a family card, often held by a male guardian. In the end, only 21 women were elected to the municipal councils out of 2,106 contested seats. Municipal councils themselves have limited authority and, in January 2016, the government decreed council meetings would be sex segregated—women councilors must participate via video link. Following the announcement, a woman councilor stepped down.

The guardianship system also impacts women’s ability to seek work inside Saudi Arabia and to pursue opportunities abroad that might advance their careers. Specifically, women may not apply for a passport without male guardian approval and require permission to travel outside the country. Women also cannot study abroad on a government scholarship without guardian approval and, while not always enforced, officially require a male relative to accompany them throughout the course of their studies.

Zahra, 25, whose father refused to allow her to study abroad, said, “Whenever someone tells me, ‘You should have a five-year plan,’ I say I can’t. I’ll have a five-year plan and then my dad would disagree. Why have a plan?”

If the Saudi government intends to end discrimination against women as it has promised and to further the reforms it has already begun to undertake, it cannot allow restrictions inherent within the guardianship system to continue. For example, the government does not require guardian permission for women to work, but does not penalize employers who do require this permission. The government does encourage employers to hire women, but requires employers to establish separate office spaces for men and women and to enforce a strict dress code on women, policies which create disincentives to hiring women.

The need for substantial, systemic reform is perhaps starkest with regard to the state’s response to violence against women. Saudi Arabia has taken steps to better respond to abuse, but has done so within the framework of guardianship. The guardianship system allows men to control many aspects of women’s lives and makes it difficult for survivors of family violence to avail themselves of protection or redress mechanisms.

The extreme difficulty of transferring male guardianship from one male to another and the severe inequality in divorce rules make it difficult for women to escape abuse. Men remain women’s guardians, with all the associated levers of control, during court proceedings, and until a divorce is finalized. There is deeply entrenched discrimination within the legal system, and courts recognize legal claims brought by guardians against female dependents that restrict women’s movement or enforce a guardian’s authority over them.

Women who have escaped abuse in shelters may, and in prisons do, require a male relative to agree to their release before they may exit state facilities.

Dr. Heba, a women’s rights activist, explained, “The [authorities] keep a woman in jail… until her legal guardian comes and gets her, even if he is the one who put her in jail.”

Failing to abolish these and other tools available to male guardians to control and extort female dependents will guarantee that women continue to face tremendous obstacles when trying to seek help or flee abuse by violent guardians or simply to pursue paths different than the ones their guardians have determined best.

The Time is Now

Saudi officials often argue that the failure to end discrimination against women is not due to state policy, but due to difficulties in implementation, and that the country must move slowly as the government’s hands are tied by a conservative culture and a powerful clerical establishment’s interpretation of Islamic law.

Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told the Economist that women’s travel was not entirely restricted, and pointed to social and religious criteria to explain the restrictions that he believed existed. When asked why women’s labor force participation was so low, he said, “The culture of women in Saudi Arabia. The woman herself.”

Saudi Arabia’s imposition of the guardianship system is grounded in the most restrictive interpretation of an ambiguous Quranic verse—an interpretation challenged by dozens of Saudi women, including professors and Islamic feminists, who spoke to Human Rights Watch. Religious scholars also challenge the interpretation, including a former Saudi judge who told Human Rights Watch that the country’s imposition of guardianship is not required by Sharia and the former head of the religious police, also a respected religious scholar, who said Saudi Arabia’s ban on women driving is not mandated by Islamic law in 2013.

The state clearly and directly enforces guardianship requirements in certain areas, including restricting women’s ability to travel and requiring guardian consent for a woman to marry. In other areas, there appear to be no written legal provisions or official decrees explicitly mandating a guardian’s consent or presence, but public officials and private businesses ask women for either without fear of sanction.

Saudi Arabia, which acceded to the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) in 2000, is legally obligated to end discrimination against women without delay, including by abolishing the male guardianship system. As long as it fails to take steps to eliminate the discriminatory practices of male guardianship and sex segregation, the government is undermining the ability of women to enjoy even the most basic rights.

In April 2016, Saudi Arabia announced Vision 2030, which declares that the government will “continue to develop [women’s] talents, invest in their productive capabilities and enable them to strengthen their future and contribute to the development of our society and economy.” The government cannot achieve this vision if it does not abolish the male guardianship system, which severely restricts women’s ability to participate meaningfully in Saudi society and its economy.

In discussing the role of women in Saudi Arabia and the pace of change, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said in his Economist interview, “It just takes time.”

That time is now.

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