The Verdict is Guilty
by Steve Johnson
Remember the immigrant children incarcerated in cages at the border? Neither do I. That was so … June ago. Events move at the speed of light these days; under the current administration, some new outrage greets us almost every morning, distracting us from whatever incensed us the day before. Snub a centennial veterans’ remembrance in France? Shift the focus to allegedly incompetent firefighting in California. A caravan approaching the southern border? Break out the tear gas on women and children to show them we don’t stand for their nonsense. FBI raid Michael Cohen’s office? Shift the focus to NFL players kneeling during the playing of the National Anthem.
And on it goes, day after day, until the brains of even the most civic-minded of us are fried like morning bacon. There’s a strong suspicion that this is either a designed or instinctive Trumpian strategy — throw it all against the wall until you can’t stand to look or smell the wall anymore. Which makes it all the more important that we turn back to the kids on the border. Fifty or 100 years from now, historians will look back on the United States and be considerably less impressed by debates over corporate tax rates or sentencing guidelines than they will by the way officials reacted to immigrant children coming from Mexico and points south, including cutting loose tear gas on them, a chemical banned on the battlefield.
To refresh your recollection, more than 2,500 children were separated at the border under the administration’s zero-tolerance policy, announced in April. Despite a court order, more than 500 children were still apart from their parents as of Labor Day, with about 300 of those cases involving children whose parents were deported without them. Not long before Election Day, 245 children were still without their parents, according to the ACLU, which initiated the court action against the administration. But, as one humanitarian volunteer asked the New York Times in October: “Where are all the cameras now? The kids are still in there.” And immigration lawyers continue to uncover new separation cases that administration representatives justify using specious claims against the parents — Catholic Charities found at least 16 new, little-publicized cases.
I would submit that the family separation policy — and especially the way that it has receded from public consciousness — will leave a trail of horror for future generations. Some political analysts have compared it with the relocation and forced internment of some 110,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II. That’s an apt analogy, though families were not separated or broken through deportation in the way that the Trump policy did. Recall President Reagan signed a law in 1988 that apologized for the internment and authorized $20,000 in reparations to each survivor of the camps. I don’t think it’s beyond the realm of possibility that an embarrassed Congress and president in the distant future might feel it necessary to take the same action for families split apart at the border.
In the meantime, it would behoove all of us to continue to pay attention to the plight of immigrant children, whether it’s forgoing a slice of pizza to send a few bucks to the ACLU or immigrant rights’ groups; calling or writing member of Congress; or just familiarizing ourselves with the latest count of separated children. "A society will be judged by how it treats its weakest members," said Harry Truman. And as it stands right now, that verdict is guilty.
- Parent Category: Thank You Breakfast 2018
Jeff Session's Resignation Ignites Protests In Richmond
Read or watch the news report by WTVR. Click here for the article. This is a growing concern.
Thank You Breakfast
Please join us on November 10 at 10 a.m. at Ashland Coffee & Tea for muffins, fruit, juice and coffee. It's our treat to thank volunteers who have worked hard to get Democratic candidates elected. We have moved the breakfast to our usual meeting place, Ashland Coffee & Tea, to seat more people than we were able to seat at Ashcreek. At the Nov. 10 meeting, greet Vangie Williams, our exciting candidate and we hope our next Congresswoman from the First District. Also, meet some of the candidates who are running in 2019. We thank all of you who have canvassed, phone banked, written postcards worked the polls, donated money, attended events, and supported Democratic candidates in any way.
- Parent Category: Newletters
“A Vote is A Chess Move, Not a Valentine”
This is a quote from the lead singer of the band Cake, and it hasn’t left my mind since I heard it that night. I know for me and I think for most of us, a vote has become a valentine once or twice (or maybe all the time). And why is it, that nothing but supreme infatuation will do when it comes to voting for a political leader? And has that always been the case?
I don’t think so. There have always been big political movements and fans for certain presidents to be sure. Kennedy and Reagan to name a few, but what about everyone else? I have to imagine people voted for others, not because of frenzied admiration, but because they found them to be the most capable, even by an inch, out of the people that were running.
Capability, experience, and incremental policy suggestions are no longer sexy. People want to be offered the world even if they know it can’t possibly be true or happen as quickly as they’re being led to believe. People want to be worked up into a froth with every speech, moved to tears with every story.
They want to be entertained. But your life is not Netflix. Your healthcare, your education, your defense is not entertainment. So why do you need that out of a quality public servant?
Sometimes the chess moves are easy, sometimes they’re hard. I suspect for most, this November’s elections will be an easy move. But maybe not. The presidential election coming upon us, sooner than we think, might be a harder move to make. But from this November on and for every election here on out, we will have ample opportunity to play the game. And I hope we all make the thoughtful move.
- Parent Category: Thank You Breakfast 2018
By Sandra Howard
Chair, Black Caucus of the Hanover Democratic Committee
Young people losing their lives before they begin, living at the hands of our armed officials. Our commander in chief is more concerned about spending our taxpayers dollars on investigating to find a culprit talking about him while migrant children have lost their parents, probably never to see them again, and we still have not seen the taxes of the highest official in our nation, the someone that has been entrusted to guide and protect our nation, our lives and the lives of our future generations. This America stands on the edge of deep cliffs that could engulf us at any moment because we have a Congress and Senate, majority leaders, who just do not care and have become a silent "legislature". This is just an ant's cuff of our problems in our America today.
People say their vote doesn't count and we stay home on election day or grumble about our leadership. Races are won by a handful of people because of lack of participation. A race in Virginia last year was won by one (1) vote. Where do you need to be on "election day"? I know where I will be and I pray you will be: At your precinct casting your ballot, protecting your God-given rights and your only hope for a better tomorrow for all of us. That oval mark makes a difference to your health care, your future voting rights, the air we breathe like human beings and our commitment to the care and protection of our children. Just turn on your tv or radio and look at what we have in our White House, our Congress and our Senate. JUST VOTE, your vote does count. Don't just listen to me, do your homework, check out my facts. Then, vote!
- Parent Category: Thank You Breakfast 2018
We are Americans!
Check out and share this beautiful video about the history of America who Americans are:
kEy issues of the 2019
VA general assembly
Saturday, December 8, 10AM
Don’t miss the next meeting of the Hanover Democratic Committee on Saturday, December 8 at 10 a.m. at Ashland Coffee & Tea when a panel of Virginia’s leading activists will discuss key issues coming before the 2019 Virginia General Assembly. Kim Bobo of the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy will discuss wage legislation and immigrant rights; Kristie Smith from the Virginia Conservation Network will discuss key environmental issues; Liz White of One Virginia 2021 will discuss redistricting and Andy Goddard will discuss gun safety regulations.
They need our help. This is a great way to get involved in the main issues that will be decided in the upcoming session of the Virginia General Assembly. In the recent campaign season, you did an incredible job working the polls, campaigning, phone banking, sending postcards, canvassing and more. Now it’s time to take the fight to the 2019 Virginia General Assembly. Find out what you can do and meet the leaders who will be instrumental in fighting for democratic ideals at the next meeting of the Hanover Democratic Committee on Saturday, December 8 at 10 a.m. at Ashland Coffee & Tea. As always, the coffee is on us.
Coming up in January—Report from Sen. McClellan plus Reviving the ERA
Recycle your Kaine Signs
If you still have your polybag Kiane signs, please bring them to the next GC meeting. Caroline Cooke will collect and recycle them. Also, bring your wires for reuse by one of the campaigns.
Coffee is brewing!
TBA in January 2019
All Democratic Women are Welcome!
All Democratic Women are invited to join us in January as we begin our seventh year of the Hanover Democratic Women's CoffeeCaucus. Because of the busy holidays, there won't be a December Coffee, but Information about the January Coffee will be coming in the new year.
Our Coffee Caucus is a growing group of Democratic women of all ages who meet monthly, sometimes in the day and sometimes in the evening, at the homes of volunteer hostesses at different locations around the county. Our goal is to enable as many women as possible to get to know one another so that we can better work together. We have no formal memberships or dues.
For more information, please contact Diane Neergaard at firstname.lastname@example.org,or 804-304-1951.
Because of the holidays, we are not having a Men's Forum in December, but hope to see you at the December HDC Meeting on Saturday morning December 8 at 10:00 am at the Ashland Coffee and Tea. The Men's Forums will resume again in January.
Do have a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Joyous Holiday Season!