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    Another Terrorist Car Crash in Britain: When Will It Stop?

    Last month, a man deliberately drove his car into the sidewalk into innocent pedestrians walking in front of the U.K. Parliament.  It is not the first terrorist attack to take place near Parliament—in early 2017 a terrorist struck pedestrians on Westminster Bridge and stabbed a police officer before he was killed.  Nor is it the first time terrorists have used vehicles to kill innocent people.  It happened in New York and Nice.  And sooner or later it will be repeated in another city.

    President Donald Trump tweeted after news of the last travesty: “Another terrorist attack in London…These animals are crazy and must be dealt with through toughness and strength!”

    While we all wish that President Trump would reduce his predilection to tweet, it is difficult to disagree with him on this statement.  Innocent civilians have been injured and killed at the hands of terrorists time and time again.  Families have lost loved ones.  In my blog post on MS-13, I agreed with President Trump that the gang members are animals—and I agree with him that all terrorists are animals.  Period.  People are fearful, on edge, and likely to take their fear out on innocent Muslims.   All this plays right into the terrorists’ hands.  Yet what we hear from the world’s political leaders is more political rhetoric than solutions.

    I cannot repeat or stress enough that the United States must spend time, energy, and dedication to investigate and stop the terrorist cells that are in our own country.  And we must take aggressive measurements to keep more from entering our country.  If that means a wall, a list of banned countries, or more enhanced immigrant processing, so be it.  We must also educate ourselves as to why—and how—our own citizens are willing to kill fellow countrymen or go overseas to fight for radical terrorist groups.  But we cannot sit by idly debating the issues while we put our citizen in increasing danger.

    We must never give in to the demands of terrorists or allow them control America’s destiny.  Yet our inaction on immigration controls is doing exactly that.  We must stop protecting the guilty at the sake of the innocent.  My question to our politicians is simple:  How many more murders will we witness before you do something to stem the terror?

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    Respect Those Who Truly Sacrificed Everything

    Much is in the news about Nike’s signing of former NFL quarterback, Colin Kaepernick.  As anyone who is a political junkie or sports fan knows, Kaepernick was the first football player who chose to kneel instead of stand during the national anthem, doing so in protest over what he believed to be discrimination directly and indirectly sanctioned by U.S. and local governments.  A great debate ensued that Nike has rekindled by signing the ex-player to a lucrative contract to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Nike’s motto, Just Do It.   The new campaign’s tag line is, “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.”

    The reaction has been mixed.  Some applauded Nike’s decision.  Hundreds of other posted videos burning Nike clothing and tweeting objections.

    While I prefer not to further engage in the merits of the debate, there is one thing I’d like to suggest.

    I invite Mr. Kaepernick and Nike to visit the American Cemetery and Memorial in Florence, Italy.  Interned in its 70 acres are 4,399 soldiers who died in WWII fighting in the hills and streets of Italy. The cemetery in Florence is one of 24 foreign cemeteries where American soldiers are buried.  In total, these sacred memorials are the final resting places for more than 130,000 soldiers who died defending our freedoms.  The memorials also honor the souls of more than 100,000 who remain missing in action. These men and women made the ultimate sacrifice so Mr. Kaepernick can remain free to protest about injustices he perceives.  To characterize what he’s done as “sacrificing everything” is an abomination.  For Nike to endorse such hypocrisy through an advertising campaign geared to making profits is an insult to the memories and true sacrifices of the nearly a quarter million soldiers laying under foreign soil.  And while some of the proceeds are being donated to Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights charity, I have not seen any reports that Nike is donating anything in the memory of the dead soldiers.

    So I say this to Mr. Kaepernick and Nike:  Shame on you.  Protest all you like but respect those who, unlike Mr. Kaepernick, truly sacrificed everything.  And all that is required to do so is the simple and time honored gesture of standing for our national anthem.  Is that too much to ask?

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    Why the US Needs to Focus on Infrastructure

    Last month, a bridge collapsed in Genoa, Italy, killing over 20 people and injuring dozens more after a violent and sudden storm went through the region. Although this terrible incident happened in Europe, it gives our federal and state governments more reason to examine on our own infrastructure.  And to do something about it rather than continue to stall progress through partisan politics.

    Much of our federal, state, and local taxes go to repairing roads and building new ones, maintaining bridges, highways, streets, and managing tunnels like the Lincoln Tunnel, which in 2013 saw over 50,000 cars traveling through its system per day.

    According to a 2015 article from The Hill, the United States federal government spent $96 billion on infrastructure. On August 13, 2018 USA Today released an article citing states with the worst infrastructure.  Rhode Island is among the worst, with 24.6% of its roads in poor condition and with 23.3% of its bridges deficient.  Almost a quarter of their bridges and roads are crumbling!  Hawaii comes at number one with the worst infrastructure. An incredible 93.2% of their dams at a high hazard risk.

    Federal and state budgets include almost a hundred billion dollars for infrastructure.  Yet our roads are full of potholes, our dams are at risk, and our bridges are crumbling. What will it take for Rhode Island and Hawaii, as well as virtually every other state, to wake up?  Will our politicians wait for people to die before they act?

    Federal and state governments need to stop the political rhetoric and bleeding our tax dollars.  They need to get to work on making sure Americans and their families can travel safely.  Otherwise it won’t be long until we see something catastrophic happen, and our elected officials will have no one to blame but themselves for the inevitable disasters if nothing is done.

    The lack of progress is reprehensible.   Whatever your politics may be, fixing our crumbling infrastructure should be devoid of political debate.   It is a matter of life or death.

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