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Saturday, November 12, 2016

I watched a fifteen year-old girl burn the American flag on the news last night.

I recall Barack Obama beating John McCain in the 2008 presidential election, and I remember quite well in 2012 when Obama did the same to Mitt Romney.  I didn't vote for Obama in 2008 because I didn't believe he had the life experience to be president.  By 2012, I had determined that I did not share Obama's perspective on the history of our nation, nor did I agree with his economic and foreign policies.  I was particularly disturbed by his use of Executive Action, and by the doubling of the national debt to the astronomical amount of twenty trillion dollars.  I was not happy in 2008, and I was equally disappointed in 2012.  Almost half of America voted against Obama in 2012, so I assume that they were just as frustrated.  Interestingly enough, the folks who lost in 2008 and 2012 are the ones who support the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms.  If you didn't know better, you might have some fears that after losing two consecutive elections to a president who openly supports draconian gun control laws, armed Republicans might be rioting in the streets.  But you know better.

Instead, the election of 2016 will be remembered for the riots, looting, property burning and physical assaults that took place in many U.S. cities on the nights immediately following the election.  While its true that Hillary Clinton will likely win the popular vote by a tiny percentage, no one can reasonably argue that Donald Trump did not win the election.  Our electoral system awards the candidate who wins the most electoral votes.  After they get around to calling Michigan, Donald Trump will have won 306 electoral votes to Clinton's 232.  IF our elections were decided by popular vote, Trump would have spent a great deal more time in Texas and California.  But our system is not keyed into the popular vote.  Both candidates knew this fact, and both put together strategies which would ideally accrue 270 electoral votes.  Trump's strategy was successful, Clinton's was not.  It really is that simple.

The day after the election, President Obama and Secretary Clinton both acknowledged Trump's victory, and asked the American people to put the disagreements behind us, and work together for a better future.  For some reason, tens of thousands of Clinton supporters chose to ignore this request, and instead decided to express their frustration by rioting and destroying personal property.  My first reaction was to be pragmatic.  Let these people release their anger, and then, after a few nights, we can get back to life as usual.  It was about this time that I saw the news story on public High School teachers in California who were leading their students to the demonstrations.  The students were then provided U.S. flags, lighter fluid, and matches.  One fifteen year-old from an obscenely expensive private school in the San Francisco area, announced to the camera, "I'm queer and I'm not going to take being oppressed anymore by this fascist government".  She then proceeded to light up Old Glory is a sea of flames.  You can't imagine my anger at that moment.  My father earned three Purple Hearts fighting for her freedom, and the soldiers that have died in various conflicts made the ultimate sacrifice, so this spoiled, selfish, piggish child could burn a flag.  She wasn't alone- groups of teachers from numerous public schools directed their students to the nearest television crews, so they could heap scorn on President-Elect Trump and the fascist, racists who voted him into office.

I don't have any resentment to the young kids who were out in the street protesting.  I save all my disgust and anger for the political activist educators who have no qualms about using children to express their particular political perspective.  Fifteen year old students should not self-identify as "queer activist soldiers", nor should they leave a perfectly good classroom to join a protest that they really don't understand.  The only people who are screaming about deportations are those on the left.  Its reprehensible to scare people for political gain, especially when the issue involves families.  No doubt immigration is an important issue as far as I'm concerned.  I've spent more than enough time in foreign countries to know that secure borders are necessary in order to have national security.  We can't continue to allow foreigners to cross our border at their discretion, without proper documentation.  In addition, our social welfare net can't support the entire population of Central America.  Its called Entitlements, folks, and its the main reason we have twenty trillion dollars of debt.  Everytime I pick up a newspaper, I find another article referring to sanctuary cities and their determination to provide undocumented aliens with access to social aid/programs.  It's a nice idea, but  it's just not feasible.  Just like every family has to live within a budget that is dictated by income and expenditures, so the Federal government is supposed to spend money equal to its revenue.  Politicians no longer worry about the national budget; they just sell more debt to China, and provide more benefits to just about anyone who has the time to apply.

This country is filled with angry people.  On the left, everyone hates Donald Trump, and on the right, people are determined to undo some of the accomplishments of the Obama Administration.  It would be so much simpler if the folks on the left just accepted that Donald Trump is the president-elect, and  in four years you will have the chance to boot him out, if you like.  I for one don't want to see any more people disrespecting the flag.  The left seems to have a real problem with a radical element within its own tent, that espouses violent revolution and threatens to assassinate elected leaders.  The left needs to address this problem, just as conservatives must on occasion distance themselves from milita groups.  I hope that this mess can be cleaned up quickly, because I don't think a Trump Administration will accept this type of civil disobedience forever.  Leaders of the Democratic Party need to come out and publicly disavow the rioting, the destruction of property, and the burning of the flag.  We have sixty-one million people standing on opposite ends of this last election, but we have only one nation to embrace, heal and improve, and we have to be united to make things better for everyone.

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