Tag Archives: politics

Stop the no blankets for the homeless ordinance! change.org

Mayor Hayward endorses amendments to ordinance

FatherNathan Monk

Petition Organizer
For the first time in recent memory, parts of Florida will be under a state of emergency due to winter weather. Beginning tomorrow, temperatures will drop as freezing rain and sleet move in, roadways will become icy, and snowfall is expected. All of this will happen on top of already wet ground, due to rain happening throughout the day today.

However, city officials are refusing to examine an ordinance they passed last year making it illegal for the homeless to even use a blanket to cover themselves. Last week at the regular council meeting, the council members were requested by members of the public and another council person, to review the ordinance and vote in a more humane way. They refused.

Two years ago, when the city council first considered these ordinances at the request of the mayor, and hundreds of people showed up in protest, the city refused to listen citing, “The silent majority.” that wasn’t present as their reason for moving forward on the ordinance.

As this extreme freeze comes into the panhandle, it will be illegal for the homeless to seek shelter from the cold. This is unconscionable and our city leaders have refused to respond to reasonable requests for them to accommodate the homeless in any way. I am asking for everyone on my page to take the time to share this post, write the mayor and council, and forward this to your favorite media outlet.

The city may not listen to us, but hopefully they will listen if people around the world let them know how Pensacola will be viewed if they do not overturn this inhumane ordinance.

Write the mayor: mayorhayward@cityofpensacola.com

Write the council: jcannada-wynn@cityofpensacola.com, mpratt@cityofpensacola.com, pcwu@cityofpensacola.com, smyers@cityofpensacola.com, aterhaar@cityofpensacola.com, ljohnson@cityofpensacola.com, gwingate@cityofpensacola.com, bspencer@cityofpensacola.com, cbare@cityofpensacola.com

Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward endorses proposed amendments to ordinance allowing for blankets. Awaiting council vote on Thursday 13th.

Last year, in an effort to protect the aesthetics, public health, and safety of our community, the City Council adopted an ordinance which prohibits camping on public property. Next week, the Council will consider amending that ordinance to remove the prohibition on the use of cover while sleeping outdoors.

Is South Carolina … exiling its Homeless ?








South Carolina City Approves Plan To Exile Its Homeless


via @thinkprogress


Donald Trump … Él no es tu amigo

Five Things Ben Carson Doesn’t Get

Terrance Heath

Two more candidates joined the race for the Republican presidential nomination on Monday. Of the two, retired brain surgeon Ben Carson is the one likely to have the most impact. That makes it frightening how much Carson just doesn’t get.

Carson went back to his roots to announce his candidacy for the nomination. On an auditorium stage in Detroit — his estranged hometown — he recounted his troubled, poverty-stricken childhood and then launched into a speech that revealed just how much he doesn’t get, for a guy who wants to be president.

What Ben Carson Doesn’t Get About The Safety Net

Carson’s humble upbringing is an important part of his narrative. His rise to becoming one of the top neurosurgeons in the country and a best-selling author is impressive because it starts in the poverty-stricken streets of Detroit and a fatherless home headed by a single mother with little education. Carson attempted to preemptively rebut those who would point out that his childhood experience of poverty doesn’t seem to inform his political positions.

There were many people who were critical of me, because they say Ben Carson wants to get rid of all the safety nets and welfare programs, even though he must have benefitted from them. I have no desire to get rid of safety net programs for people who need them. I have a strong desire to get rid of programs that create dependency in able-bodied people.

This is a blatant lie. Carson pointed out that his mother worked “extraordinarily hard,” often at two or three jobs, “trying to stay off welfare. And the reason for that,” Carson said, “was that she noticed that most of the people she saw on welfare never came off of it.” Carson either forgot or neglected to mention that his mother turned to the welfare system to meet family needs her earnings could not.

In his book “Gifted Hands,” Carson writes that his grades improved after he got free eyeglasses from a government program:

By the time I reached ninth grade, mother had made such strides that she received nothing but food stamps. She couldn’t have provided for us and kept up the house without that subsidy.

What Carson doesn’t get about the safety net is that there are plenty of “able-bodied” people who receive some form of government assistance, and it doesn’t make them any more “dependent” than it made his mother. There are plenty of people who work “extraordinarily hard,” who have to rely on the safety net — not because they’re “dependent,” but because they don’t earn enough to afford essentials like shelter, food, medical care and transportation without assistance.

If Carson is really concerned about “dependency,” he should take on the $70 billion per year we spend subsidizing the oil industry, or the $20 billion a year we spend on farm subsidies, before taking assistance away from families who are where he used to be.

What Ben Carson Doesn’t Get About The “Turmoil In Our Cities”

Carson alluded to the unrest in Baltimore; Ferguson, Mo., and other cities where unarmed black men have been killed by police.

The past couple of weeks, there has been a great deal of turmoil in Baltimore. I spent 36 years of my life there, and we see the turmoil in cities all over our nation. We need to start thinking about how do we get to the bottom of this issue. I believe the real issue here is that people are losing hope, and they don’t feel life is going to be good for them no matter what happens. When an opportunity comes to loot, to riot, to get mine, they take it — not believing that there is a much better way to get the things that they desire.

What Carson doesn’t get about “turmoil in our cities,” is that in cities like Ferguson, Baltimore, and Detroit, people lose hope because their isn’t much of any way to get the things, or the life, they desire. That’s because jobs have disappeared from these cities, in large part due to economic policies and trade deals that made it easier for businesses and corporations to ship jobs overseas, where labor was cheap and unorganized, and environmental protections were few or non-existent.

In cities like Detroit and Baltimore, the loss of manufacturing jobs hit black communities the hardest — and black men in particular — because they were disproportionately represented in those jobs. Those jobs didn’t require a college education, but provided good wages and benefits that lifted many families into the middle class.

Not only are those jobs gone, but they have been replaced by low-wage jobs that provide no pathway to the middle class. That’s unlikely to change as long as we subsidize businesses and corporations that don’t pay their employees a livable wage.

What Ben Carson Doesn’t Get About Health Care

He didn’t dwell on it in his announcement speech, but Carson is so opposed to the Affordable Care Act, a k a Obamacare, that he’s compared it to both slavery and 9/11.

● In a speech at the 2013 Values Voter conference, Carson said: “You know Obamacare is really I think the worst thing that has happened in this nation since slavery. And it is in a way, it is slavery in a way, because it is making all of us subservient to the government, and it was never about health care. It was about control.”

● Later, in an interview with the Daily Beast, Carson said that Obamacare was the worst thing to happen to the U.S. since the 9/11 terrorist attacks: “Because 9/11 is an isolated incident. Things that are isolated issues as opposed to things that fundamentally change the United Sates of America and shift power from the people to the government. That is a huge shift. You have to take a long-term look at something that fundamentally changes the power structure of America.”

● The health care plan on Carson’s website is about as sparse and vague as the GOP plans for Obamacare “replacements.” Beyond re-establishing “a strong and direct relationship between patients and their physicians,” the only idea he has is an old one: health savings accounts, which by definition favor the well and wealthy. Republicans have been pushing health savings accounts since 2006.

What Carson doesn’t get about Obamacare is that, despite its imperfections, the health care reform law is popular with the majority of Americans. A recent Bloomberg poll showed that 63 percent of Americans think the law should be left alone, or allowed to work in order to find out how it should be changed. Only about 35 percent want Obamacare repealed, and most of them are people the who aren’t impacted by the law.

That’s because it lowered the number of uninsured Americans, and increased the number of Americans with access to care without increasing spending on medical care. In fact, it’s coming in 20 percent under projected costs. The number of uninsured has fallen by more than 11 million since the law’s passage, and is now at a seven-year low. More than 16 million Americans now have affordable, quality health insurance thanks to Obamacare — including presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who once swore to repeal “every word it.”

What Ben Carson Doesn’t Get About Climate Change

For a man of science, Ben Carson doesn’t get what the big deal is about climate change. “As far as I’m concerned, that’s irrelevant. What is relevant is that we have an obligation and a responsibility to protect our environment,” he said in an interview in Des Moines, Iowa. “You can ask it several different ways, but my answer is going to be the same. We may be warming. We may be cooling.”

What Carson doesn’t get about climate change is what the GOP doesn’t get. Not only is there a consensus in the scientific community, but (as with the next issue) Americans have moved past the GOP on this issue. A Yale/Utah State University poll showed that 63 percent of Americans think climate change is happening, along with 99 percent of the counties in the country.

What Ben Carson Doesn’t Get About Marriage Equality

Despite the issue currently being before the Supreme Court, Ben Carson didn’t mention marriage in his announcement speech. Perhaps he finally learned his lesson. Carson managed of the biggest gaffes so far this campaign season when he told CNN’s Chris Cuomo how he knew that being gay is a “choice.”

Ben Carson, the prospective 2016 presidential hopeful beloved by Tea Partiers, told CNN host Chris Cuomo on Wednesday that he believes homosexuality is “absolutely” a choice—because “a lot of people who go into prison, go into prison straight, and when they come out, they’re gay.”

The former neurosurgeon went on, “So did something happen while they were in there? Ask yourself that question.”

While the rest of the country cringed, the scientific community called Carson out, noting that decades of research shows that sexual orientation is inborn, not chosen. (Something so obvious that even Florida Sen. Marco Rubio can grasp it, or at least pretend to.)

After becoming the focus of near universal ridicule, Carson decided that he just wouldn’t talk about the issue anymore. What Carson doesn’t get about marriage equality is that he won’t get away with that on the campaign trail. The GOP base is light years behind the rest of the country, and they will demand that he says something about it, especially when the court’s decision is announced this summer.

Who Really Has A “Right to Rise” Under jeb?

| By  a repost

Another Bush Is Running For President

Jeb Bush announced he is running for president today, surprising everyone who thought he already made that announcement six months ago. Nearly ten years after the end of his two terms as governor of Florida and after a major staff shakeup, Jeb has officially launched his campaign as an “inclusive” Republican. But despite his promises to “make opportunity common again,” Bush’s record as governor and his policy positions since suggest he is more likely to protect the opportunity of those who already have it. Bush’s tenure was marked by a decrease in access to higher education, access to the American dream, and access to justice —all critical to increased opportunity.

Ahead of Bush’s announcement, CAP action examined the impact of Bush’s policy positions and actions as governor and analyzed how they would impact the entire country. We found that the rhetoric we saw in his announcement speech today doesn’t match up with the reality of his leadership:

Affirmative Action:
Rhetoric: “We stopped processing kids along as if we didn’t care – because we do care, and you don’t show that by counting out anyone’s child. You give them all a chance.”

Reality: As governor of Florida, Jeb Bush repealed affirmative action for public higher education institutions, and as a result African American enrollment at Florida universities decreased by 10.9 percent. Over the same time period, African American enrollment in public universities nationwide actually increased by 3.5 percent. If, instead of increasing, national black enrollment decreased at the same rate Florida’s did, it would mean 13.9 percent fewer black students in these universities in 2013 – a total of 85,726 fewer black students enrolled. That’s equivalent to all the African American students in all California public universities – five times over.

Rhetoric: “The next president of the United States will pass meaningful immigration reform.”
Reality: Bush has been so vocal an opponent of President Obama’s executive action on immigration that he compared the president to a “Latin American dictator.” A report from the Center for American Progress shows that President Obama’s actions to reform our immigration system would grow our economy by $230 billion over ten years. Bush’s home state of Florida would see nearly $10 billion in GDP growth and allow 230,000 immigrants to come out of the shadows, work and pay taxes.

Stand Your Ground:
Rhetoric: “…Every life matters and everyone has the right to rise.”
Reality: We can thank Jeb Bush for signing the first “Stand Your Ground” law in the nation. In 2012, a study by the Tampa Bay Times of Stand Your Ground cases in Florida found that people who invoke the law to justify a killing are more likely to be successful if the victim was black: 73% of perpetrators who killed a black victim faced no penalty versus 59% of perpetrators who killed a white victim. Since Bush passed the Stand Your Ground Law a defendant in Florida is 24 percent more likely to win a case if the victim were black than if the victim were white. Florida’s law paved the way for other states to adopt similar laws, which have contributed to an additional 600 homicides per year.

Rhetoric: Bush talks often about giving everyone the ability to rise up, lamenting that, “we’re moving to a world that is sticky in the ends, where it’s harder for people in poverty to move up and where the rich are doing really well and the middle is getting squeezed.”
Reality: Bush may say that everyone has the right to rise, but while governor he opposed a federal effort to expand paid sick leave, a policy that heavily impacts working women. Instead of opening the door to opportunity, Bush said these types of policies “are best left to businesses.” But passing paid leave would benefit the more than 40 million American workers that can’t take a single day off work to recover from an illness or take care of a family member without risking losing their jobs.

BOTTOM LINE: On these issues and many more, Jeb Bush is a divider, not a uniter. His announcement speech today was full of rhetoric promising to expand opportunity for hard working Americans, but Bush’s record paints a much different picture.