Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Memorial Day

Tuesday, May 30th, 2006 - Early Morning

So yesterday was Memorial Day in the United States and I have been searching both inwards and outwards as to what I really wanted to write about on this occasion. On Friday and Saturday, I spent some time searching the Web for information on how Memorial Day came to be. I found that there really is no clear answer. Our country was still getting over a Civil War that had ripped both the nation and individual families apart when in many towns such as Boalsburg, PA and Waterloo, NY loved ones in the 1860's began honoring their war dead by decorating their graves with flowers. Hence Decoration Day which eventually led to Memorial Day. Throughout the weekend, I searched outside for both historical facts and inside to see if I could actually feel anything different from any other day or weekend.

On Saturday I had a wedding and reception to attend. My wife went to the wedding with other family (I promised to go to the reception in the evening with her) while my five year old and I stayed at home and painted a white plastic dinosaur we had purchased many months before on a trip to the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia.

Saturday - 11:30 am

As we laughed and fought for creative control over different parts of Tyrannosaurus Rex, our mixing wet paints congealed into a kind of blue-green and brown monster with red bloody accents that were probably closer to being realistic than I thought we could have achieved when we first started. While he was having his peanut butter and jelly sandwich on slightly warm but not toasted white bread, a child in Iraq was trying to fall asleep despite gunfire whizzing by his house, and a child here in the USA was going to learn what the words "ultimate sacrifice" really mean as he learned of his mother or fathers demise in the line of duty. To this child Memorial Day will always be about memories never made and neither I nor anyone else will ever know their sense of loss... but is it my duty to at least try to feel something on their behalf?

Saturday - Evening

The Bride was beautiful and the Groom handsome. They were so fortunate that they had two services. Wow, a Christian and a Hindu wedding! When I was growing up an interracial marriage was a rarity and required true courage - today they are commonplace and almost expected. So here in these ceremonies and these young people's aspirations, two thousands of years old cultures, religions, peoples came together in an embrace that will hopefully endure through the forces that try to pull them apart. On the other side of the world, misguided youth who have radicalized the worlds youngest and largest religion, fight for their identities with a reckless abandon that no amount of guns or mortars or missiles or barricades will be able to stop.

My five year old looks dapper in his Bollywood inspired suit and his patent leather shoes. As always, he charms all of the twenty something ladies of all nationalities and shades of hair; enough so that he even gets some of them to play freeze tag with him on the large porch outside of the reception hall in their 3 inch heels. He comes running up to me with the six year old Italian American girl he has befriended and proudly proclaims, "DAD, we're drinking Shirly Temple's (w/o the alcohol, I hope). Later that night, after a successful day of charming and cake eating, he drifts off to his kaleidoscope dreams and I return to my laptop to read the news of the day and think more on what the meaning of Memorial Day should be.

Sunday - Past Midnight

A big earthquake has killed thousands in Indonesia; many children too, of course. Some idiot on a cable news network talks about donor fatigue; another somewhat lesser idiot shows pictures of an ancient Hindu Temple that has succumbed to the shaking in this mostly Muslim country. Frankly I too am tired and I turn on the the air conditioning for the first time this season and sleep as both soldiers and citizens suffer in the intense heat of Baghdad. The soldier burdened by suffocating body armor to protect him/her from the rage of a population that has no electricity, and therefore no respite from sweltering temperatures and broken promises of freedom and a better life. Memorial Day has still not hit a nerve here, though.

Sunday - All Day

There are more parties to attend and we even have time for a quick splash in the still cold waters of the just opened swimming pool. At night my friends and I go out for a drink and curse the waiter because he forgot to bring the french fries. We have chosen to sit outside (against my wishes) and the characterless smell of a suburban parking lot fills my nostrils. No there is no smell of burning diesel or burning flesh from the latest detonation of an improvised explosive device. The alcohol helps to numb away the weariness of a busy social schedule. Oh, how a young man from Ann Arbor, Michigan would probably kill for the quenching powers of a Long Island Iced Tea as he thanklessly patrols a Sunni neighborhood in Baghdad, trying to keep at bay Shiite death squads from exacting revenge for years of repression from Saddam's tyranny. Am I feeling Memorial Day yet?

Monday - Afternoon

Monday, the shortest and last day of the long weekend includes a cookout on the backyard barbecue and more swimming. The president gave a speech and rightfully thanked the loved ones of all deceased soldiers from all wars for their service to the country.

"In this place where valor sleeps, we are reminded why America has always gone to war reluctantly: because we know the costs of war," Mr. Bush said. "We have seen those costs in the war on terror we fight today." (New York Times: Tuesday May 30, 2006)

He spoke these words from Arlington National Cemetery.

Tuesday - Again

As I reflect on my entire weekend that has gone by, I am not so sure that we (I should say "I") do know the "cost of war." Do not get me wrong. I am not sitting here naively feeling guilty that I had a wonderful weekend with my family while there was so much conflict elsewhere. Those who serve our country in the military do so by choice and the rest of us serve it in other productive ways. The only difference is that we have much less at stake than them.

So how does one feel Memorial Day? Unlike past wars where there were higher casualty figures, relatively few it seems have been touched by personal loss. Also, there has been no financial price as of yet. Of course it will come. This war is basically being fought with borrowed money. Instead of raising taxes on all, and not just the rich, or cutting spending on stupid pork barrel projects to pay for this war, we defer to the future any financial sacrifice we may or may not make for this war.

How does one feel this war or any war? Maybe I should be asked to give up a days or a weeks pay for a fund for the families of the fallen. Will I feel then? Maybe, yes... some financial squeeze and some shuffling of bills can be painful. But it is an artificially induced feeling, really. Maybe volunteering to help a fallen soldiers family in some aspect of their recovery; you know, that's probably not a bad idea....but wait; for all of the empathy and sympathy that I can offer will I truly be able to convey a feeling or understanding that would come across as anything more than a misguided and hollow intrusion. I do not know. I have not volunteered yet and maybe I should.

And maybe that's just it. I can see another's pain but will never feel it. I can never really know the cost of any war until it costs me someone dear. And maybe, so it is with all others as well... for if we actually could feel another's anything, we may not have occasion for Memorial Day at all.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Immigration - Investment in Humanity

Immigration has been the hot topic of discussion in America recently. People have erroneously linked the topic of immigration and security. The recent focus on security after the attacks on 9/11/2001 in New York, has given an excuse to many who want an end to immigration, both legal and illegal. Sure, it is absolutely true that we should have better control of our borders, both to the North and South. As a sovereign nation we have every right to expect the government to protect the population from people wanting to spread illegal drugs, violence and chaos to our nation. Our border should absolutely be closed to illegals and be secured! Having said that, the majority of the people coming to this country, legally and illegally, do so for the economic betterment of themselves and their families; not to destroy our way of live, but to become part of it.

As I was trying to formulate my thoughts on this topic, it was a friend of mine from Boston who made me realize that whether we know it or not, America needs immigration. As the baby boomer generation begins to retire, a large number of Americans will be leaving the workforce. Not only will those jobs need to be filled, but the promise of Social Security will only be fulfilled if we can increase current ratio of workers to retirees. We must have more people paying into the system than drawing from it. As our economy becomes more and more based on delivering services as opposed to producing anything of value, people power is what will be needed and that is exactly what we lack. As our population ages, the developing world which has a more youthful population is ready and willing to deliver young, diligent workers to our services oriented economy. Instead of looking the other way as employers unscrupulously exploit illegal workers and thereby deflate wages of both immigrants and citizens, the government should be be making it easier for those who want a legal opportunity to work here and harder on those employers and industries that benefit from immigrants remaining illegal. Increasing legal immigration to face economic reality and bringing willing wage earners into the tax and social security system makes much more sense than allowing selfish employers to game the system and allow them to cheat the government of taxes and cheat workers of fare wages.

Of course, there are many whose views on immigration are formed not by economic concerns at all, but on those of cultural identity, religious purity, and the protection of values and a way of life they feel is under threat. They further the argument of security to shade their xenophobia. However, despite some of their obvious prejudices, they do present some valid concerns. It is extremely important that all immigrants are properly assimilated into the population. That means that immigrants learn to speak English, learn to be law abiding citizens, and learn to respect and even emulate some of the traditions and values of their adopted homeland; doing so does not mean that they have somehow lost their traditional identities.

One can see the tensions in communities where assimilation has not taken place. While a junior in college I spent 8 months in the UK participating in an overseas education program. In addition to my academic activities and travels, I spent a considerable amount of time with relatives and friends in London, Leicester, and Manchester. I was amazed to discover how limited the contact was between immigrants whom had been in England for over 30 years and even their children with their English neighbors. Under the mask of civility, there was great distrust and lack of appreciation of the others traditions or concerns. I blame both sides for this divide. Our identities are not merely frozen caricatures formed when we are born never to be enriched by experiences gained from travel or discourse with others. Yet it seemed that all sides felt that opening up to influence from the other would somehow corrupt their god given purity.

I do not see this divide in the United States. When my father came to United States in the late 1960's he came for educational advancement and honestly, economic opportunity. The economic engine that is America has always thirsted for people with motivation and talent. Throughout his studies and his employment I believe that he has been able to gain the respect of his peers and his neighbors. This is not to profess that my family was never the target of prejudice. We had our home vandalized numerous times when we moved into the community that I still call home. At that time there were very few minorities in our neighborhood and we certainly stood out as being different. However, much has changed. As more and more immigrant or minority families have moved to the area, it seems that a truly harmonic balance has been reached and there is mutual respect for the strengths each diverse peoples brings to the community.

Globalization has truly changed the world. America has spent a large part of the last century extolling the virtues of free trade and the virtues of the free movement of goods, services, and capital across borders. Globalization can not occur in a vacuum. It's forces will enrich many but will also displace many. Those displaced will indeed seek a new life in places where they can lead their lives with security and dignity. Investments in technology have helped us be more productive and more efficient, but it is investments in people that will raise the global standard of living. That is an investment that all should be willing to make.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Smart? Probably. Dumb? Definitely.

With coarse rice to eat, with water to drink, and my bended arm for a pillow - I have still joy in the midst of these things. Riches and honors acquired by unrighteousness are to me as a floating cloud.
Confucius (551 BC - 479 BC), The Confucian Analects

So here I am at 1:45 am reading the New York Times Technology Section and I find this article on how one of China's favorite young sons has been shown to be a fake. Chen Jin had it all; a PhD from U Texas @ Austin; a great gig as head muckety muck director of a brainos' admitted only dept. at the same school that former Chinese President Jiang Zemin went to; and a partner in many micro ventures that would all lead to many macro dollars, or yuan's, or renminbis, or fortune cookies.

What happened?

As it turned out, he didn't quite invent China's first homegrown microprocessor as he and greater China had so proudly announced to the world only recently. He took the gazillions of fortune cookies given to him for research from the Chinese government and set up a business where, honest hard working Chinese laborers basically scratched off Motorola from imported American Saltines and stamped Hanxin on them, thereby making them China's Chips.

A few weeks ago a similar riches to rags story happened here when a smart, young, Indian student at Harvard was found to have plagiarized (oops, sorry internalized) - leave it to a Harvard girl to come up with a new term for lifting, copying, cheating, plagiarizing - 40 passages from another writers teenage romance novel in an effort to make her somewhat intelligent and original story more run of the mill, and thereby, more marketable. The internalizing worked so well that Kaavya Vishwanathan soon had America cheering for Opal Mehta and her quest to lighten up to get into Harvard. It worked so well that she even got a movie deal.

There is already a lot written on the pressures that Asian young people feel to study, succeed, and make a name for their families, their people, their nation. I am not really interested in driving down that well worn road. Nothing stops them from thinking independently and coming up with their own definitions of a successful life; possibly one that is different than that arrived at by family and community.

We learn from Ruth Marcus' insightful editorial that Kaavya's grandfather had already expressed his expectation for her to be a doctor when she was only six years old. She was more interested in managing peoples money rather then their well being. Investment Banking is a very lucrative career these days. Although I hate making assumptions, I am sure her pops would have been very proud of his young Doctor of Wealth. His desire for her to be a doctor was probably more a reflection of his desire for her to be affluent and therefore well taken care of than it was in doing something as altruistic as doing a stint with medecins sans frontieres.

I truly wish no ill towards either one of these obviously intelligent young people. Chen Jin's doctoral adviser spoke to his brilliance as noted by David Barboza in his NY Times article. And I hope that Kaavya gets to tell the story she intended to tell. What I find disappointing is these young peoples need for validation being so great that they sold so cheaply their brilliance to fickle societies that value the polished, artificially cut diamond over the possibilities that lay within the random and imperfect rock that we are all cut from. Often these modernizing societies are forgetting to pass along the riches of their own thousands of years old civilizations to their children in an effort to catch up to so called advanced societies. They forget that the way these societies became advanced was through the courage of individuals to explore new frontiers in science and thought, conduct patient research, and persevere through cycles of failures and successes, thereby laying block by block the foundations of their modern prosperity.

And Asian civilizations are no strangers to these concepts. The Great Wall and the Taj Mahal; the wisdom of Confucius and the austere beauty of Vedantic philosophy; the discipline of martial arts and the scientific and spiritual benefits of yoga are only a few of the contributions of these great peoples. Material wealth is not a goal to be ashamed of; but material wealth and the short term admiration of a fast moving world are not the foundation on which to build our futures. Lets teach our kids the basics, but then also expose them to the arts, music, sport, or whatever, nurture their imaginations, and then set them free to be as rich and famous as they will be on their own merits.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

old IS gold

I just found out last night that my elderly neighbors across the street are selling their house. When we (my wife and I) moved into this house seven years ago, we discovered that many of our neighbors were elderly couples whose children had long since flown the coop. Unlike many of my friends who were buying homes in newer developments with lots of young kids or people of child bearing age; we bought an older home in the same town I grew up in, not really knowing what demographic my neighbors fell into. Frankly, I could not have been happier when I found out that my neighbors often got together around 7:30 am on nice sunny mornings and all went walking together; this was far better than the noisy, rude teenagers that often sped down the 25mph road in front of my parents house at 80. I must admit, I was also one those rude teenagers, once.

Before I write about how I feel about the Jones's (names changed) selling their house, I want to draw a quick portrait of my elderly friends. There is lady Evelyn directly across the street (next to the Jones's) who's husband was a preacher. When we moved in, he was already paralyzed from a past stroke and a couple years later he had an even more severe one. Despite his difficulties Lady Evelyn had enough energy and chutzpah for both. She would feed him, clean him, load him and his heavy wheel chair into her special boxy van and take him not only to church and poetry recitals but even HORSEBACK RIDING at a stable where they catered to physically challenged adults and children. She had a big picture window installed in the dining room and created a pond and waterfall for him to look at... something he had always wanted to do. He was equally magnificent. Despite his paralyses, whenever my wife and I walked over, he would take her steady hand into his shaking one and always kiss it as only a true gentleman could. The love and goodwill he couldn't express in speech, one could see plainly see in his eyes, his smile and the gently curving lines on his forehead. He died 2 summers ago and all of us on Grace Lane prayed for him and expressed our condolances to Lady Evelyn. At that time I started thinking that I might have to witness many more of these events in the coming years...

Then there is Joe and Judy on the other side of the Jones's. Judy just had brain surgery two years ago to remove a tumor and almost did not make it. Joe was so messed up at the time, not only because of Judy's seemingly ever worsening condition, but because one could see the fear in his eyes of being alone whether she lived or died; Judy was beginning to lose her memories. Thank God for Joe that she pulled through with flying colors. She just brought me over a delicious pepper stuffed with lamb and wild rice last week. She and my wife often trade tomatoes and peppers from each others gardens.

Then there are the Browns and the Widow from further up my side of the street. I do not know them as well as my neighbors across the street but I know that they have all shared so many great years together on Grace Lane. Even when the whole group of them was not walking together, I often saw Mr. Brown and the Widow (no, never Mrs. Brown) go out for an afternoon stroll. Whenever, my five year old son sees any of them, the Widow, the Browns, Joe & Judy, Lady Evelyn, and especially the Jones's, through the bay window in the living room, he calls out to them, then runs out the door without asking and says hello. They all stop to say high and wonder at how fast he is growing. He then invites them over to come see his fish or play video games with him in the house. They all share a laugh and each moves on to the activities of their particular generation.

So the Jones's are selling their house. These are the same Jones's that have lived there since the house was built in the early '60s. Having raised their own kids; I know they have seen so many others' bicycle by, and then drive by. I feel sad that they will not be here to see my son do the same. God willing, they will still be living in the over 55 community where they purchased a property to retire to and he will be able to drive his set of wheels over to see them in 11 more years.

Last year the Jones' went to Italy. The year before that, a cruise down the Rhine River, and even before that to Alaska. I imagine they held hands and reminisced about their happy life just as the old couple walking hand in hand in a pouring rain down a glistening Philadelphia street that I saw with a past girlfriend when we were just friends. Not knowing, but maybe hoping that we would soon fall in love, she and I wondered how happy that old couple looked and whether we would enjoy the same fate.

Recently, Mrs. Jones has been sick a lot and Mr. Jones' cancer is back. He is undergoing chemotherapy again and she fainted a couple of weeks ago and fell. He now has a stent in a place other than an artery and can not walk much. A week ago I moved a few bags of mulch up a hill so he could sit near them and mulch his plants. Mrs. Jones was grateful be she need not have been. This was the least I could do for a man who, even at his late age, would come over with a snow-blower and clean my driveway if I got home late from work after a snowfall.

Now, a young man from a few houses away cuts their lawn. Mr. Jones tells my wife that he can not bear the sight of watching someone else tend the yard that he has nurtured for almost fifty years. When he sees my son from across the street, Mr. Jones shouts out a loud greeting and the little one runs across the street without looking both ways and starts spewing his whole life story, all five years of it without stopping for a breath; Mr. Jones listens to the whole tale.

My son is a lucky boy. He sees his Grandparents everyday and has seen all his Grand Uncles and Grand Aunts. They have visited him here in this land and he has been fortunate enough to have visited his 2 living great grandmothers and 1 great grandfather in another land on 2 separate occasions. I often am a little jealous. He knows not how lucky he is being surrounded by so much adoration and wisdom - more importantly - just the love and affection. Separated by parents who emigrated to this country for a better life, I only caught fleeting glimpses of the elders in my family - through the few and far between visits to the homeland.

Even so, their stories of their youth, their struggles, of their painful separations from children and grandchildren far away stay with me today. I will wait pensively for the day that the SOLD sign goes up on the hill across from my bay window. This morning I was all worked up because the guy who lives to the left of me never cuts his lawn on time. In fact, Mr. Jones and Joe once joked that I had better watch my son; if he wandered over there, he might not find his way out. When the moving van drives away later this summer, my son will ask me where the Jones's went. I won't know what to say then. Of course, if a family from the younger demographic moves in, and they have rug-rats for him to play with, Mr. and Mrs. Jones may soon become a distant memory to him. But not me.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Freedom Earned

America does not go abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own.
John Quincy Adams
President (1825 - 1829)

Americans are a free people, who know that freedom is the right of every person and the future of every nation. The liberty we prize is not America's gift to the world; it is God's gift to humanity.
George W. Bush, President (2001 - Present)
State of the Union address 2003

Freedom is a choice that must be made by those who wish to be free. The sectarian rife that we see in Iraq today is a clear example of a people whom have not yet made the hard choices that need to be made by a society that wishes to be free. The above two quotations, I believe frame the discussion and disagreement between those who believe we should have invaded Iraq to free it of Sadaam Hussein or not.

I will leave aside for this discussion the debate on whether or not there were nuclear weapons there or not and whether Sadaam actually posed any real threat to the United States. Much has been said on this and can be tackled later.

One of the justifications for this current conflict in Iraq used by the current Administration is that America is freeing an oppressed peoples. My real concern is to deal with the notion that we can impose our notions of freedom on a society that has not yet come to the conclusion on its own that they actually desire this freedom. Numerous freedom struggles throughout history have shown us that where there is a will, there is a way.

The colonists that won their freedom from King George III came from different socio-economic, religious, educational, and cultural backgrounds. However, they united in a common struggle against a common enemy because they all felt equally, the oppression and insult of the British monarchy. Their struggle was a military one; their victory was a political one. While the soldiers fought the good fight, the thinkers and future politicians developed a roadmap of what the future nation would look like. During the darkest days of the Revolutionary War, the French came to the rescue, but only after they were asked. America had already made the choice to be free, had been willing to spill its own blood and spend what little treasure it could muster for its desired liberty. Had the French come before the intial struggle of the colonists, they would not have been looked upon as saviours but as opportunists; looking for an advantage in their on again, off again centuries old conflict with England.

India's and South Africa's freedom struggles took an entirely different path. Their struggles used the power of protest, civil disobedience, and the weight of world public opinion to win their particular conflicts. In all of these situations diverse peoples came together to fight for their shared liberty. Even before achieving their goals, leaders in these budding democracies had an ideal that they aspired towards.

One does not find this in Iraq. Indeed, there were many segments of Iraq's population that were severely oppressed. But even they were not able to unite because of their distrust or prejudices towards the other oppresed group. The Kurds in northern Iraq, the Shiites in southern Iraq, and many moderate leaning Sunnis could not crystalize a freedom struggle worthy of any external support.

Even after the United States has commited the lives of hundreds of thousands of young men and women towards Iraq's freedom, Iraqis themeselves cannot agree on a common vision for a free society. They may indeed desire personal freedoms as President Bush assumes; but they nor their leaders have decided that they value the concept of liberty for all of their citizens. We find ourselves in a struggle where our nation is fighting for the freedoms of a nation that does not really exist as a nation, and fighting for the freedoms of people who wish to oppress others that do not agree with them.

This is an inexcusable situation to find ourselves in. We have changed the course of our own history by inserting ourselves into a freedom struggle that did not exist. During World War II our leaders waited until we ourselves were attacked before entering a fight that it can probably be argued that we should have entered sooner. We have shed our historical aversion to becoming overtly involved in other nations internal affairs to to our own detriment and the detriment of the few in Iraq who may have over time been able form some sort of consesus and will amongst their peoples for a more lasting change in their history.

Perhaps if our President and our leaders in Congress had been able to see freedom as something to be earned instead of as a gift to be given, they would have thought twice before sending this nations children to fight another 's monster.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Tucker's Situtation

Tucker Carlson was out of control last night ( http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12720378/ ) on his show "The Situation with Tucker Carlson". He was ridiculous and outrageous in his insistance that the young lady alledgedly raped by members of the Duke University Lacrosse team was clearly nothing but a prostitute.


"She worked for an escort service. You‘ve got to be kidding. I‘m an adult. That‘s what people who work for escort services are..."

"...what everybody knows but everybody for some reason can‘t bring him or herself to say, which is this woman was a prostitute working for a company that supplied prostitutes for people who ordered them. OK, that‘s just true. It‘s not something I made up. It‘s a fact.
And I don‘t know why we are afraid to say what is true.

I find it amazing how quickly the news media, especially the conservative leaning shows, is so quick to blame this victims lifestyle for her current predicament. I hate to label people as rascist, but the double standards are obvious. Even Dan Abrahms, who was quick to defend the young caucasian lady who was assaulted, raped and murdered in NY after leaving a bar at 4am in the morning alone, when people simply suggested she could have made better choices, showed his obvious biases when he suggested that the Duke victim was not credible because the police report stated that she initially said "20 white guys" assaulted her then changed her story to only 3 of them raping her. However, both Tucker and Dan gloss over the fact that Duke itself issued a report stating that the initial police response to this womans complaints could have been wholly inadequate. Duke surmisses that she was not taken seriously beacause the first responders did not believe she was "important enough".

It is entirely possible that instead of being drunk as these commentators suggest, this victim could have been given a date rape drug and was therefore not in any state of mind or body to initailly offer an accurate decription of what happened to her. However, this benefit of the doubt is not extended to this victim. In her case their common positions are, "show me the evidence". Of course, ultimately the evidence will have to be shown. And it is entirely possible that the accused young men are innocent. I believe we should wait until all the evidence is presented to make up our minds. I admit that my natural inclination is to believe the victim because of my own personal biases (which may become more evident in the future), but I am certainly able to be rational and pass judgement only when the facts are presented.

These commentators greatest frustration is that the District Attorney is not willing to show what he knows to the media. Although they accuse him of trying the case in the media beacuse of his own political ambitions, they are most frustrated because he refuses to do exactly that. Hopefully he will continue to defend this victims rights and represent her case as long as he believes she is credible. Ultimately the defense may prevail anyway, because of the difficulty in proving rape charges.

Of course, if we are a civilised society we should hope that justice is done all around, for the alleged victim and the alleged accused. Although we respond emotionally thru our biases, we must step back and evolve our judgements from the facts presented and the principles we supposedly espouse. Our final judgements should provide no clue to our held prejudices.

Obviously, in TUCKERS WORLD, exotic dancers are all prostitutes. This woman may or may not be. But Tuckers insistance that America knows what people like this young lady really are only proves to America who he really is.

PS: I must thank Tucker for providing the catalyst to get me off my ass and set up a Blog.