"I am certainly not one of those who need to be prodded…"

post-memorial day: repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell”

Posted in politics by stuart sia on June 4, 2010

For a long time in our history, people of color were denied the opportunity to fight, and even die for our country. In our vehemently racist past, a seemingly levelheaded argument was made that a person of color would be in physical danger not only from the enemy, but his fellow comrades who couldn’t be expected to see beyond the racial stereotypes and saw people of color as somehow a threat to white superiority. Nevertheless, people of color served, notably the 332nd Fighter Group of the US Army Aircorps (aka the Tuskegee Airmen), the first African American pilots to fight and die for the US, and the 442nd Infantry Regiment of the US Army, an Asian American unit of primarily Japanese-Americans whose families were being interned, which remains the most highly decorated regiment in the history of the United States Armed Forces. The remarkable thing is whereas the desegregation of the American South was issued by force and enforced with the firm arm of the National Guard, the desegregation of the military started by Eisenhower and put into nearly full effect by Truman had the backing of veterans and currently serving military who had come to appreciate the courage demonstrated by the people of color who had fought so valiantly alongside of them, albeit incidentally (God forbid that white soldiers should be forced to fight alongside black soldiers; segregation, fortunately, had ensured this affront to propriety did not happen often). As a follow up to Truman’s Executive Order 9981, Secretary of Defense McNamara issued Directive 5120.36, which empowered military officers to use economic leverage to influence local businesses and ensure that veterans were treated with dignity and respect regardless of their race, religion, or national origin. In other words, it wasn’t civilian society forcing desegregation and equality down the military’s throat, but rather, military officers seeking to protect their own men, and war veterans realizing the injustice of how the greater society treated their fellow comrades.

Similarly, the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” has the backing of men and women who have served alongside their once in the closet comrades who have since come out as gay. Just last month, hundreds of veterans converged on Capitol Hill to lobby Congress to repeal this discriminatory policy. The education and training one receives in the US Armed Forces is comprehensive, and teaches military men and women much more than how to load and fire a weapon. And beyond that are the lessons drawn from the battlefield, of what really matters, what America really represents, and what is really worth dying for.

The misogynistic enemy we now face cringes at the reality that they are fighting (and losing) to the women currently serving in our military. It is ironic that they are in full agreement with the right wing, überconservatives, who care little for the rights of gay Americans. Imagine their dismay to learn America no longer discriminates against homosexuals and that, indeed, openly gay men and women are among those battalions laying siege to their oppressive rule.

philip spooner – a patriot & activist

Posted in politics by stuart sia on October 22, 2009

Courtesy of Roxanne Neal. Thanks for sharing.

comments on this past election

Posted in politics by stuart sia on November 14, 2008

So, Barack Obama is president elect and the world will never be the same. I felt overwhelmed with pride and love for country and neighbor, knowing that we do indeed have a working democracy, and that by the will of the people, a man with a Swahili name and mixed heritage was elected leader of this great nation.

It’s dumbfounding.

It’s amazing.

It’s beautiful–it’s America.

And I love it.

I am an American. This is my country. And I love it.

vote no to hate, no to prop 8

Posted in politics by stuart sia on October 21, 2008

don’t vote

Posted in politics by stuart sia on October 5, 2008

a national crisis

Posted in politics by stuart sia on September 30, 2008

“This is a moment of national crisis, and today’s inaction in Congress as well as the angry and hyper-partisan statement released by the McCain campaign are exactly why the American people are disgusted with Washington,” the Obama-Biden campaign said in a statement released shortly after the vote.

Sen. John McCain’s campaign accused Obama and Democrats of putting “politics ahead of country.”


thank you, hillary clinton

Posted in politics by stuart sia on September 18, 2008

“Senator Clinton has made history in this campaign. She has made history not just because she is a woman who has done what no woman has done before, but because she is a leader who inspires millions of Americans with her strength, her courage, and her committment to the causes that brought us here tonight.”

-Senator Barack Obama

why biden?

Posted in politics by stuart sia on September 18, 2008

Like Barack Obama, Biden has been an outspoken critic of Bush’s handling of the war in Iraq.

Biden’s leadership was instrumental in helping to bring stability and peace to the Balkans. In 1999, Biden wrote a resolution endorsing the air war in Kosovo that was passed by the Senate.

Biden is a leader on the congressional effort to end genocide in Darfur.

In the late 1990s, Biden led the effort in the Senate to bring Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic into NATO and to pass the Chemical Weapons Treaty.

Biden has been instrumental in crafting almost every major piece of crime legislation over the past two decades. His Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 put more than 100,000 police officers on America’s streets and has been credited with bringing down crime rates to the lowest in a generation.

In 1996, Biden authored legislation to create a national registry of sex offenders, which tracks people convicted of sex crimes involving violence or committed against minors.

Biden authored and passed the landmark Violence Against Women Act, the strongest legislation to date that criminalizes domestic violence and holds batterers accountable.

Biden was a strong supporter of the Family and Medical Leave Act, cracked down on deadbeat dads, and has been a consistent champion for equal pay.

Biden was one of the first to introduce legislation to address global warming and he co-sponsored the most aggressive piece of climate change legislation in the U.S. Senate.

Biden is a champion on the issue of making college more affordable by using the tax code to reduce costs.

Biden was successful in passing a provision that prevents budget cuts to military facilities while the nation is at war, one of his key priorities, ensuring that all veterans have top-notch medical treatment in a fully-funded VA health care system.


vote for change. vote for obama.

Posted in politics by stuart sia on September 18, 2008

“I’m in this to win, I want to win, and I think we will win. But, I’m also going to emerge intact. I’m going to be Barack Obama and not some parody.”

“Movement without organization, without policy, without plans, will dissipate.”

“One of the dangers of movements is that they always want to be completely pure and have everything their way. But politics is about governing and making compromises. And so sometimes folks who come into politics with a movement mentality an be disappointed…But the flip side of it is if it’s all tactics and all politics, and there’s not the idealism, if it’s not touched by that sense of movement, then you actually never bring about change. Then it’s just pure transactions between powerful interests in Washington.”

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