Our 3rd Amendment

Our 3rd Amendment

Certainly not an Amendment most people remember is the 3rd Amendment. Why is this Amendment forgettable…basically because we don’t use it.

The 3rd Amendment protects homeowners from having to quarter soldiers in times of war. And that means that soldiers cannot burden a homeowner by moving into a person’s home–even if it advantageous to the military to do so to fight and win a war– without the homeowners permission.

Almost everyone I know does not even think about this Amendment or the right it affords us, mostly because after the Civil War we have not fought a war on our soil.

No one expects to have to fight a war here on our soil…and so this is an Amendment that is pretty much forgotten.

It is one of those things we take for granted as Americans–the things that are actually our choice to do or not do.

As our political atmosphere continues to get complicated we should really think about what consequences our actions today can have on our future.

We do not want to open ourselves up to an invasion from outside the U.S. or from within. It may be that one day we may have to invoke the 3rd Amendment.

When we were in the midsts of the American Revolution and Great Britain was forcing citizens to quarter British soldiers the delegates at the Constitutional Convention felt this was important.

It is a basic premise of our country–the Freedom to do as we choose–without any coercion from the government.

Or are we being coerced now by the political climate we are in? How many people are being les by the talking heads on television about what to believe is true, what to think and how to vote?

Have we, by choice, allowed the soldiers of the enemy into our homes and allowed them to cloud our judgment with their rhetoric?

The choice is ours–right now–to not allow the government to come into our homes uninvited and to fight a war that would allow a tyranny to replace the government established by the founders.

The right belongs to us-the people.

Anti Federalists to the Rescue

Anti Federalists to the Rescue

After the smoke cleared at the end of the American Revolution things got very serious very fast.

Unlike our Twitter feed, Facebook, 24 hour News Channel lives things back in 1783 did not move quite so quickly.

But there was a sense of urgency in establishing a government to protect the new citizens of the brand new United States of America!

And yet it took 5 years before the U.S. Constitution was written and ratified in 1788 and another 10 months before George Washington was sworn in as our First President.

Why did this take so long? Our fore fathers took the establishment of our new government very seriously. We needed our government to have enough power to coin money, establish a military to protect us and unite the new 13 states into one country while at the same time not having so much power that we would turn into a tyranny.

After all, the colonists had just spent 8 years and countless lives fighting against a tyranny!

In the end, the U.S. Constitution was the perfect balance of order in the three branches and strength in the Central government. Or was it?

The Federalists wanted to ratify the U.S. Constitution quickly. They felt there were enough provisions in the Constitution as written to limit the Federal powers…but the Anti-Federalists were more cautious and thought the Constitution gave the federal government too much power and it would eventually be used to oppress the people.

I am in awe that the more things change the more things stay the same. After 231 years it seems we are still having the same debate.

The Anti-Federalists came to the people’s rescue by insisting on and finally gaining the addition of the Bill of Rights–which protects the people’s rights then and now from a too big, too complicated and too oppressive Federal government.

If it’s not obvious to you yet let me explain. The Federalists eventually evolved into the Democratic Party while the Anti-Federalists evolved into the Republican Party.

While there were very intelligent and well meaning delegates on both sides, cool heads prevaled and the perfect balance of power was created thanks in major part to the more conservative delegates protecting the people and the country.

As you go about your busy run around every day lives remember we would not have this life at all if it had not been for the Anti-Federalists.

And if we want to preserve this nation and our freedoms we need to sit up and pay attention to what a few are attempting to do to take control of the government.

Anti-Federalists to the rescue! May cool heads prevail and protect our nation and our freedoms from the few power hungry politicians that would destroy our way of life just to say they won.

Getting Back To Political Roots

Getting Back To Political Roots

Now, in my empty nest years, I’ve arrived at a time in my life where I know myself more and how to express my beliefs in a concise way.

I love to read and research and talk to people and have good conversations–about the things I believe and about thinks I am against.

I am finding, though, that many intelligent people are confused about many topics and especially about government.

Who’s to blame? Well I blame the education system which has been steadily deteriorating over the last 40 years!

And I can say that with confidence since I spent the last 16 years in the classroom, fighting the system and trying to teach my students the most I could.

So most people don’t understand how our government works, what the political parties are, stand for, or represent.

Regardless of your political leanings everyone should know why they stand for what they stand for and not be swayed by titles, lies and popular beliefs. Or heaven forbid by one news channel!

So I am going to attempt to educate a bit in my blog. My aim is to provide information and let you make the best decision you can make with the information.

We need to get back to our roots as a nation because while we have come a long way, we are on a path to destroying everything this nation promises.

The whole idea behind the American Revolution was we wanted to rule ourselves, by the people, without the tyranny of England. We wanted to run our own economic system without the mercantilist ideals of England…

The patriots pledged their lives and fortunes to the cause. And we won…and so a new way of life began. Let’s not destroy it!

In my next post I’ll talk about the Federalist and Anti-Federalists and their support of the U.S. Constitution.

Thank You For Your Service

Thank You For Your Service

No man (or woman) that has walked this earth is perfect–many are far from it. And that also holds true for our Presidents.

They are, for a time, the most powerful person in the world–and while they are held in high regard–we must also remember that they are human.

This last Friday evening we lost our beloved Papi Bush and we are reminded of many things–least of all political.

President Bush was beloved, not because of his titles and accolades but for who he was as a person.

He dedicated his life to service–to God, to his country, and to his family. And he held his values close and lives them out each day.

President Bush’s values is the legacy he leaves for each of us–honesty, honor and humility.

We are a better country for having you at our helm.

Thank you for your service President Bush, as you now live among the angels.

The Good Neighbor Policy

The Good Neighbor Policy

Some would say our communities are becoming more dangerous and our safety less secure.  And that for the most part we are letting it happen.  Many people who find themselves thinking, feeling and believing this are reaping what they have sown.

More and more, I see people, in my neighborhood who do not even acknowledge the people living around them.  They ignore the person across the street, the kids playing in the yards or the lost dog.

The world is changing–people have forgotten or never learned the importance of community.  They don’t care about anything that doesn’t directly affect them–what they don’t realize is that their attitude towards their neighbors is hurting themselves.

How? They have stopped caring, stopped being involved in our communities, and have stopped thinking about the well being of themselves and those around them.  And then lamenting when something goes wrong.  We absolutely need to do something about it.

I am not talking about being the nosy neighbor that pulls out the by laws of the Home owner’s Association and berates their neighbors for not hiding their trash cans on the right side of their homes.

I am talking about being a good neighbor.

Now I have been very blessed in my life to always have good neighbors.  I hope in the bottom of my heart that my neighbors have thought of me as a good neighbor as well.

I don’t believe the complainers, the people who don’t care about others, the ones who scare others with talk of crime and mischief.

These are the traits of good neighbors:

Good neighbors watch out for each other–they know who lives in each house, the cars they drive and who their kids are.  Many good neighbors will know which dog or cat belongs to which human.

Good neighbors will pick up a newspaper, or trash if they see it in a neighbor’s yard and they know that person is out of town.

Good neighbors keep an eye out when there are strangers about.

Good neighbors are always willing to lend a hand mowing lawns, mending a fence, fixing a car or preparing for a hurricane and evacuation.

Good neighbors will give time, lend tools and provide advice especially from older neighbors to younger, less experienced homeowners.

Good neighbors are not afraid to call in the authorities when they see something that is not right, that is not normal for their community.

Good neighbors worry about others, not just themselves.

With the world changing all around us–be a good neighbor–the benefits of this are directly felt by yourself.

 

Rights and Responsibility

Rights and Responsibility

With great power comes great responsibility.  Powerful words used in a Spiderman movie.  Powerful words and true words.

The United States is the most powerful country in the world.  Because we are are powerful we must live up to the great responsibilities we have to lead the world by example.

This great nation has the responsibility to establish a more perfect union–we are not perfect but we must continue to strive to be the best.

Our country has the responsibility to establish justice for our citizens, to keep them safe from criminals that would do our society harm.

This nation has the responsibility to insure domestic tranquility–so we can lead ordered and calm lives.

The United States has the responsibility to provide for the common defense to protect us from bad actors from other countries who want to destroy our way of life.

This country has the responsibility to promote the general welfare of our citizenry by encouraging people to educate themselves and provide the necessary services for each other: police, fire, medical, agriculture, education.

Our nation has the responsibility to secure the blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our future generations to have the ability to pursue our God given rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

These are the principles our established government has promised to its citizens–to protect us and our rights.

We the people then, have the power–the government was established by us, for us.

And with that power comes great responsibility.

As citizens we have the responsibility to support and defend the Constitution, respect and obey federal, state, and local laws, respect the rights, beliefs, and opinions of others, participate and stay informed of issues affecting your community, pay income taxes on time, serve on a jury when called upon, defend the country if the need should arise and participate in the democratic process.

As citizens, we are not here to just sit back and receive from the government. That is not the reason we set up our government. We are here to live in a free society in which we have the resources to help ourselves and our communities and the government protects our rights to do so.

As citizens we must participate in the democratic process so we can knowledgeably chose people to represent our best interests–this above all is extremely important.

Use your power–fulfill your responsibility–participate in your democracy!

Early voting opens today!  Go out and vote!

Stand Up

Stand Up

I have always been an advocate of the underdog.  I have never liked situations that are unfair, or unequal or that are set up to do harm to others deliberately.  Name calling, bullying, unfair treatment of those that don’t have the resources to stand up for themselves.

By “resources”, I am not just talking about money. Some people do no have the physical resources, the intellectual resources, the political resources, or the emotional resources to deal with the life circumstances they find themselves in.

And they are being taken advantage of by the exploitation of countries, politicians, education systems, societal pressures and economic threats that push them to make decisions that are not in their best interests–just to serve the wants of the current power structure.

For those who do not know me, let me describe myself a little.  I am a woman, 4′ 11, 124 lbs.  Not large by any means.  As an empty nester, I have reached the beautiful age of 50, so I am not young, but also not old or infirm.  I am a daughter, sister, mother, aunt, and wife.  I am a teacher, a life long learner, an advocate of others. I am a very proud American of hispanic descent.

Those attributes make me stronger not weaker.  I have been attacked and bullied, mostly verbally, at times, because I do not conform to the waves of thought that go through this country from time to time in regards to women’s rights, education, work place politics, gender and ethnicity roles and the larger rights and responsibilities of citizenship.

What people fail to see in me and more importantly, in themselves, is the power they have in their own opinions.  No one has to believe what they are told if they can see something different with their own eyes.  No one has to take at face value that things are right if they feel in their gut that things are wrong. Yet they do, every day, and then are sorry whey they are manipulated, bullied, and taken advantage of.

Here is a list of examples we should all take a hard look at in our own lives and stand up for what we truly believe–whether you are right or wrong.  Find your compass, listen to your gut–not to the thousands of screaming heads we encounter in our daily lives:

  1. The “me too” mentality–we all encounter some sort of sexism in the world during our lives. All of us, at one time or another, men as well as women.  Pick a side, once and for all.  It is up to you–not to the person using sexism as a weapon or to the people around you that have an opinion about it–you. Decide if you want to be a victim and wallow in self pity, never moving forward in your life or decide if you want to stand up for yourself, own it and put it behind you.
  2. Our education system–our education system is broken, it has been for a long time but at the same time forms the backbone for developing our children’s ability to question, study, research and learn.  We cannot blame the system itself if people–you and me–do not stand up and either change it, or if we cannot, then use it for good.  As parents we have the responsibility and the right to teach our children MORE than what they are learning from their books and curriculums in school.  Decide if you want the current powers that be mold the minds of your children or if you want to take the responsibility of building the minds of your children to be critical thinkers.
  3. The wage disparity among men and women.  It may exist.  I don’t really know because I have been able to find and read research on both sides of this argument that sound credible.  Here is what I know.  We live in a wonderful country that lets us choose our line of work.  If you accept a job at a certain amount of compensation for certain duties then that is your choice.  If you feel that you are not being compensated fairly for your work because of your gender–then you have the choice to CHANGE YOUR JOB.  Decide what you want to do with your life and work hard at it, the money will come.
  4. The immigration issue.  I believe in the rights of the underdog.  I always have and I have often stood up for others that cannot stand up for themselves. But I have also always said and lived the fact that “if you are going to do something, do it right.”  There is always a right and wrong way of doing things.  The current immigration situation in our country is a problem of our own making.  We must take care of ourselves–our citizens–FIRST, before we attempt to help citizens of other countries that want to come here. It is the responsibility of other countries to take care of their people FIRST, if they are not doing that–IT IS NOT OUR FAULT or OUR RESPONSIBILITY to make up for their failures. Decide which side of the issue you are on.  If we ruin this country, we will no longer have the power to help the people of other countries.
  5. Our ethnicity and our responsibilities as Americans.  I am proud to be of hispanic descent. I am proud that I am bilingual.  But I am more proud that I am American–that I live in a country in which many cultures can live together and work towards a common goal:  keeping America a free, safe and prosperous nation. That comes first–ALWAYS–before any other consideration of cultural celebrations and traditions, language rights, or family loyalties from other countries. Decide if you really want to be American, and if you are willing to live up to the responsibilities of what that requires.  We all have a choice here.  Decide if you want to not just live in this country but be a PART of it–if not then decide where you would be happier and go there.

It is time to stand up! It is time to decide what you want for you and your family. There is no right or wrong in this decision. There is power in your thoughts and in how you want to live your life.  It is your choice.  Make it!

Don’t be the underdog, stand up for your convictions. Don’t play the victim, the only person that allows victimhood is yourself.  Don’t stop learning because someone told you this is all there is, there is always more. Don’t accept that others are telling you you don’t get paid what you deserve–work harder, Don’t allow others to call you names because you want to protect your country from the problems of the world, take care of your country and let others take care of theirs. Don’t let people view you as a part of a minority when you are in the majority as an American, you give them your POWER when you let them. The world is a beautiful place–Stand up and find your place in it.