Letters for December 12, 2019
The Census 2020 will be vital for communities to get the funds needed for infrastructure and other public resources. Yet the questions being asked, along with outreach for people to participate, could hinder this funding from getting into communities that need it most. Since President Trump spoke out about including a question of citizenship on the census, members of the LatinX community have been concerned and have considered not participating in the census count. This is out of fear due to the many talking points from the GOP. While the question of citizenship will not be on the census count brochure, the misinformation is already out, and there will be a question included about race. There is no doubt that this census will shape our community for the decade to come.
If John Bolton refuses to testify because his job involved creating national security strategies involving classified information, then he should appear before the House Intelligence Committee and plead the 5th amendment, and Chelsea Manning should be released from prison because she at least answered her subpoena and showed up to face her subpoena by publicly stating she would refuse to testify against Wikileaks. Yet, unlike John Bolton and several of the subpoenaed witnesses for the impeachment trial, Chelsea Manning is not protected by executive privilege, and Chelsea Manning's 5th Amendment seems to have been violated because, unlike the impeachment witnesses who refuse to testify, they have not invoked their 5th amendment rights, yet Chelsea Manning is sitting in a jail cell for refusing to testify against herself, while being illegally incarcerated for showing up to face a subpoena while stating “I refuse to testify against myself.”
Earl Ammerman IV
Ad it up
I saw the anti-Shen Yun advertorial in the last issue. The ad is pretty harmless, I'm sure—it's written in poorly-translated English and obviously bullshit. But it's part of a long-running Chinese government campaign against Falun Gong that has included imprisonment and torture. I appreciate that the RN&R is free, and I know ads keep the lights on, but could you go back to the escort service well instead?
Another Pete fan
Pete Buttigieg has connected with so many people on a level we long for, and that connection is making headlines. Pete's rules of the road are Respect, Belonging, Truth, Teamwork, Boldness, Responsibility, Substance, Discipline, Excellence, and Joy. I'm a white, relatively conservative, Christian, male, soldier, social worker and husband. I was trained to embed Army Values of Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage. Growing up, I'm taught the values within my Christian faith, described here, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of respect, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if something is excellent or praiseworthy, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8. I appreciate that Pete fosters these same values. I support Pete because he brings fresh ideas, operates to bring people together instead of feeding their fears. Look at your values—is your candidate congruent with those?
During the impeachment testimony of Maria Yovanovitch, president Trump tweeted what amounted to criminal witness intimidation. Adam Schiff actually read this tweet to her while she was testifying. This is a subtle crime. It is not like armed robbery with a pistol whipping. Other subtle crimes are money laundering, campaign finance fraud, tax evasion, obstruction of justice and violations of the Emoluments clause.
The Mueller investigation found Witness Number 1 had performed all these subtle crimes. I am wondering if conservatives are smart enough to understand the criminal nature of these subtle crimes and that these crimes are not healthy for a country that is governed by truth and the rule of law. The United States is in danger from within by the Republican Party. Imagine if Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton had done the very same crimes. Conservative heads would explode.