Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Racists should rue the day

A protester is treated for tear gas effects after being hit
  Sunday night in Ferguson, MO.
| Alex Wroblewski / for Sun-Times Media
What's so distressing about the events in Missouri this month is that they're a repeat of a rerun of a redux.

Is this the 1960s or the 1990s?

No, it's Teens, the 20-teens. "Post-Racial" America.

A white police officer gunning down an unarmed black man with a dubious past is so commonplace that it hardly rates as news in America.

Yet, with no major catastrophe for the TV/cable networks to cover during the "dog days" of summer, we're left with a one-time mainstay of TV coverage: blacks rioting.

For most white Americans, it doesn't matter that a majority black community is "safe-guarded" by almost a completely white police force, that is armed like our Army. Or that this same community is governed by almost a completely white city council. They see blacks looting and they get angry.

They see this as further proof of how President Obama is dividing America.

Actually, it's their perception of President Obama and of most African-Americans that is dividing our country.

Leave it to The Onion to explain how an unarmed black teen should behave in their own community in 2014. Also, watch any episode of Key and Peele on Comedy Central. Those guys nail it.

The rest of the world is covering this story because they assumed that by electing President Obama twice in a row that this country had put its racial problems behind us.

Obviously not.

Check out any of the comments after stories on this crisis on Yahoo and you'll read unbridled hate towards African-Americans or anyone who isn't white. It's rather depressing.

I fear for the safety of President Obama should he visit Ferguson or anywhere in Missouri, the state from which Dred Scott sought, and lost his freedom, his personhood.

Many white, racist Americans are agitated these days. They're enraged that a black man occupies the White House. They're tired of movies like "12 Years a Slave," which accurately depict how this country treated slaves. Actually, they're just tired of hearing about black people. They've got problems of their own.

Well, get used to it. Soon enough, white people will no longer be the majority racial group in this country.

Notice how the NRA is silent in all of this. Had the dead black teen been properly armed, along with "open carry" protections, perhaps the story would be different. You know, "stand your ground."

One of the hidden reasons why African-Americans mostly prevailed in their civil rights struggle, is that they could buy guns and protect themselves when the police would not. Certainly, the NRA does not promote gun ownership by African-Americans.

This country lives by the gun. We are also dying by the gun.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Compared to Obama, Bush was a slacker

Clearly, Obama is more presidential
Of course, comparing anyone to W. does that person a disservice.

But, at the same point of both presidencies, Bush has crushed President Obama when it comes to days off and overall number of trips.

It seems that the Obama-haters are a bit indignant that he takes "so many vacations," particularly during what they deem "crises."

Yes, Iraq and Afghanistan haven't gone away, with Muslims killing Muslims and some Christians, too.

There's an ebola outbreak in West Africa that affected a couple of Americans.

There's trouble in the Ukraine, which so distresses most Fox News viewers that they cannot locate the country on a map.

And, Israelis and Palestinians, surprise, surprise, are at it again.

With trouble like that in the world, trouble that won't go away for decades, if ever, getting out of town for a few days seems like the right thing to do.

In the Yahoo story linked above, don't forget to read some of the thousands of comments after it. They reveal that the collective voice of America is a bit cranky.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Road cleared for OSU-Cascades' move to Juniper Ridge

Now that the Oregon Dept. of Transportation has finalized a plan to deal with the traffic on Hwy. 97 on Bend's north end near Juniper Ridge, the path is clear for OSU-Cascades to build its new four-year university there.

The state expects the federal highway fund to pay for the estimated $150-million to $250-million project.

This means that OSU-Cascades won't have to pay for the mandated road work. It frees up money to spend on utilities and roads at 1,500-acre Juniper Ridge.

Juniper Ridge is now the much cheaper alternative than the pumice pit and demolition dump, which total about 100 acres, on Bend's overcrowded west side.

A recent engineering report said OSU-Cascades could build on the pumice pit, but there is much remedial work to be done that could push the tab close to $20 million just to make the pumice pit ready for any utility work or roads. Naturally, OSU has not set a limit on what it will pay to fix the site, according to the local paper.

In other words, OSU-Cascades could save at least $20 million taxpayers' dollars by simply opting to build OSU-Cascades at Juniper Ridge, which was designed for such a school. The pumice pit and demo dump were not created so that a four-year university could be built there.

The Bend-La Pine School District spent $7.2 million just to fix a football field and the track that surrounds it and there are no buildings on the football field or track.

Also, developers at nearby NorthWest Crossing replaced about 600,000 cubic yards of pumice on land for its expansion of that development. But, this area isn't for homes, but rather a large park that will have no sizable buildings on them, let alone a two-story home.

And yet, we are supposed to believe that multi-story classrooms and dorms could be built on land more unstable than the land at NorthWest Crossing.

What a bad joke.

Juniper Ridge is looking better and better than the money pit on Bend's west side.