Saturday, September 19, 2020

An Appeal to My Republican Friends & Family Members: Please Don't Vote for Donald Trump

(Image from article "Is An Insane President The Result Of A Society Losing Its Mind?" from PlanetSave.com)

Dear Republican Friends & Family

I am writing to appeal to your patriotism and your humanity and ask you to NOT vote for Donald Trump. If the Republican Party had nominated Marco Rubio, George Bush, Mitt Romney, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz... indeed, pretty much anyone you can think of, I would not be making this personal appeal to you. But this is an emergency. 

Donald Trump's presidency has a track record. He is no longer an outsider thumbing his nose at the elite and promising to shake things up. We've seen, first hand, how he works and the chaos he creates. His presidency is profoundly divisive, literally lethal to our health and safety and threatens the rule of law and foundations of our democracy.  In any other election, as you know, I would noisily advocate for my party, but I would not ask you outright not to vote for your party's candidate. But this is different. We, together as American citizens, are facing an existential threat. 

I am not asking you to change political parties. I'm just asking you to join many, many of your fellow Republicans who oppose this lethal president. Look at this Who's Who of Republicans who refuse to support his re-election:

• Former Secretaries of Defense Colin Powell, William Cohen, Chuck Hagel & Jim Mattis
• Former PA Gov. & Sec of Homeland Security Tom Ridge
• Former Governors John Kasich (OH) & Arnold Schwarzenegger (CA)
• Michael Steele (former Republican Party Chairman)
• Senator Mitt Romney
• Former Senators Jeff Flake & John Warner
• Former US Rep (PA) Charlie Dent
• ... and many, many more. 

You can see the long list of others here at this apolitical, fact-based Wikipedia page: "List of Republicans who oppose the 2020 Donald Trump presidential campaign"

And also there's this this article from Forbes:  "All The Republicans Who Have Endorsed Joe Biden For President"

Among the people who have worked in the Trump administration and have seen his methods and character first hand, there are many who are actively supporting Joe Biden. Think of it! What a potentially career-ending risk these GOP folks are taking to abandon Trump and support Biden!  It's a real measure of the powerful negative impact of working with Trump and seeing him up close and personal.

Trump's former Defense Secretary & ex-Marine Jim Mattis has called Trump "a threat to the Constitution..." See this brief article for the positions of some of the other former administration officials:

And then there are the many members of the military who are growing weary of their Commander in Chief. See:  "Half of the Military Disapproves of Trump as Commander in Chief: Poll

And many of the evangelicals who once supported him are growing tired of Trump. Billy Graham's granddaughter says, "By supporting Donald Trump, evangelical leaders are failing us and failing the Gospel. Christian women must step up where our church leaders won't."  See this article in USA Today:  "I'm Billy Graham's granddaughter. Evangelical support for Donald Trump insults his legacy." 

Finally, you can listen to the voices and see the despair and disgust on the faces of ordinary Republican citizens like yourselves, including many veterans, as they explain their opposition to Trump in this Republican Voters Against Trump YouTube Channel.

If you have read this far, Thank You!  Please consider checking out some of the respected sources above. And please DO NOT VOTE for another four years of this chaos. 

I deeply believe that to vote for Trump is to endanger all our lives by the immediate threat of Trump's continuing bungled response to the pandemic (nearly 200,000 U.S. dead and counting!!) and the longer-term threat to our democracy and rule of law. But you don't have to take my word for it. Just listen to some of those powerful GOP leaders identified above.

Thanks for your consideration,
Mike

P.S. - Feel free to forward this letter to anyone, particularly any Republican of good conscience, who might join us in doing the right thing in this election. 

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Related Posts from the Archives

Sunday, August 23, 2020

A Little Happiness from the Archives!

Times are tough right now. And we're all struggling to find a little happiness amidst a pandemic, wild and unpredictable weather events, a polarized presidential election, all sorts of nastiness from media talking heads and, sadly, sniping among friends in our social media. So how can we find happiness amidst this chaos?  

Strange but true: Scientists believe that happiness is a skill that can be learned... and like any skill, with practice, you can get better and better at it! Check out this three-part series of articles (loaded with links to free stuff!) from the archives and learn how you can learn the skill of being happy. Enjoy!

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Friday, July 24, 2020

Get award-winning movies & TV shows, audio books, graphic novels, & ebooks FREE (no ads!) from your local library.



Rare, festival-quality films, blockbuster movies & TV shows, best selling digital and audio books, even graphic novels -- you can get all these free from your local library!  All you need is your free library card and the free Libby, Kanopy and Hoopla apps. 

Here's how it works: Libby, Kanopy and Hoopla are services that have set up relationships with most libraries to stream content to their library card holders. Since we are already supporting our local public libraries with our taxes or our college and university libraries with our fees, we can get all this content for free and with no ads or commercials!* 

So why pay to stream a movie? Why buy a book or graphic novel? Why not borrow and return them for free? Your library card and these apps will get you connected.


Your Golden Ticket: A Free Library Card


To get started, you'll need at least one library card** and your matching user ID, pin number or other account info. This is probably the only time that you'll be required to physically show up at your library. They'll want to see your driver's license or other documents to confirm your identity before they give you your card. After that, you can do the rest online from the comfort of your home. (TIP: While you're there, ask the librarian if the library has a relationship with Libby, Kanopy or Hoopla and ask if they have any advice for you about setting up the services.)




Libby: The Reading (and Audio Book) App


Using the Libby app on your phone or tablet you can download and read ebooks or listen to audio books. Depending on your library's rules, you can keep a book for up to two weeks, though you're typically able to renew it if you need more time. The app itself is feature-rich and really easy to use. And you can set it up to draw from more than one library if you have multiple library cards. You can use either the Libby app to read your downloaded books or, if you prefer, switch to your Kindle app. From within the app you can search each of your registered libraries for a book, reserve it, download it, read or listen to it, set bookmarks, highlight text and more. Check out the links below for more info.


More Info: 



Kanopy: Great Movies, Documentaries & Hard-to-Find Films


This is the app for film buffs, self-directed learners and popcorn-on-the-couch movie fans! You can use it on all all of your mobile devices or fire up that big, beautiful TV and stream HD through your Roku app or Chromecast.

The San Francisco Public Library summarizes:  "Kanopy is an award-winning, on-demand streaming video platform for public libraries and universities that offers access to more than 30,000 independent and documentary films ─  titles of unique social and cultural value from The Criterion Collection, The Great Courses, Media Education Foundation, and thousands of independent filmmakers."  - SF Public Library FAQ  


More Info:  

Hoopla: All of the Above, Plus Music, TV Shows & Graphic Novels


From the Hoopla website:  "Hoopla is a groundbreaking digital media service offered by your local public library that allows you to borrow movies, music, audiobooks, ebooks, comics [graphic novels] and TV shows to enjoy on your computer, tablet, or phone – and even your TV!"

Think of it this way: Hoopla provides the same categories of media as Libby and Kanopy, plus music, TV shows and graphic novels!  What's more, it has a special Kids section with loads of boredom killers for your kids. While it's available via an app on all your portable devices, you can also stream the treasures you find via the Roku app, Chromecast, Fire, Apple TV & other devices.



More Info:

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* The number of media items you can borrow in a given period (week, month, etc.) will vary depending on your library's rules and the contract restrictions placed on them by Kanopy or Hoopla. Libby automatically limits your downloads based on your library's rules.
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** Don't have a library card? 

I hear you! I was raised in the country, far from the many libraries that are easily accessible to us city folk. However, as a country kid I learned, much to my delight, that many nearby cities, counties or even larger state regions allow people to use their libraries free of charge, as neighbors and citizens of those broader areas. What's more, some local college and university libraries have community outreach programs that allow the public to use their services. So... If you don't have a library nearby, do a Google search for "closest public library" and see what you find. It may be worth a bit of a road trip to get hooked up with a shiny new library card and, in turn, one of the free services described here. (But don't forget to call ahead & tell them what you are looking for.) Good luck!

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