Category Archives: politics

Lost for Words …

Well, not quite, obviously, or else you wouldn’t be reading this. But really, I’ve hardly ever wanted to post something here so much and at the same time felt it was so hard to even begin finding the right words. So, there has been another shooting at a U. S. school, a primary school at that. It makes me so sad and depressed to have to hear about attacks on U. S. schools over and over again. And I don’t know if it’s a result of being depressed or if it adds to the depression that I see no reason to believe that this time around something is going to change, that steps will finally be taken to protect American kids. Or worse, those people suggesting to arm the teachers might get their way. To somebody having lived in Europe for quite a while, that seems such an absurd and actually heinous suggestion. It is solely aimed at perpetuating the idea that you need guns to protect your own safety, by teaching kids that they can feel safe, because their teachers carry guns — big win for vendors of firearms. I mean, doesn’t the fact that visitors are only admitted to a school after a screening already show that something’s going very wrong? Is this kind of mistrust something we want our kids to grow up with? Is it impossible to go to primary school with the feeling that it is generally possible to have faith in your fellow-men?

And I don’t get how the danger of firearms is denied every single time children are shot. Sure, it is true, not the guns kill, people do. Or, the real problem is the mental condition of somebody entering a school and gunning down innocent kids. But how does that help? I mean, I’d be thrilled to see us seriously try to understand what makes young people desperate and alienated enough to do things like that and help such people before it gets as bad. But unfortunately, I don’t see that ever getting past lamenting a lack of morals and blaming it all on video games. But even if the mental condition is the root cause, should I let that stop me from pursuing a course that I know would at least keep the cause from having as devastating an effect? How can you explain the simple fact away that in a country like Germany with its strict weapon laws each year there are .2 people killed with firearms per 100,000 citizens, whereas in the U. S. it more than 3? It’s the mental condition? Are we saying that among 100,000 Americans there will always be 15 times as many lunatics as among 100,000 Germans? It’s sad enough that in some countries outside the U. S. people would subscribe to that, but seriously, can we please open our eyes?

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Aaahhh, my trust in the absentee vote has been restored. After the answer to my second attempt to apply for an absentee ballot was confined to a new, empty application form, I had my doubts whether that meant I should apply again or whether that was a form to be used for the next election. Everything turned out well, though. My concern around the procedure owned by the DoD proved to be unfounded. The ballot has finally arrived, and I’ll cast my vote tomorrow!

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McCain criticizes Obama for speech in Berlin

So Senator McCain is ill pleased with Obama’s speech in Berlin. Small wonder as it has been widely applauded. He too would like, so McCain, to deliver “a speech in Germany … a political speech or a speech that maybe the German people would be interested in”. I’m afraid, I don’t think there’s any way he could. It is not as if Obama had just paid lip service to the people of Germany. He touched some spots that will invariably lead to heated discussions further along the way. But that’s OK, that’s political discourse and very welcome. With everything he said he did, however, bespeak that he, as a future president of the United States, would be acting in a spirit of cooperation with the world at large, not a spirit of domination.
You may argue that that is for greater part a psychological difference, not one of actual policies. Though I could not disprove that I don’t believe so. And it definetely is something the world craves for. Just compare Obama’s visit to the most recent visits of George W. Bush in Germany. Compare how 200,000 people came to see Obama, not only from within Berlin but from all over the country, with how when Bush visited Wiesbaden, whole quarters of the town were blocked to the public to protect Bush — because he was just not welcome. Then go on and compare those visits with those of Bill Clinton, Mikhail Gorbatchev, J. F. Kennedy, and you will see just what an extraordinary figure George W. Bush really is. I think it should be relevant to every American voter that the future president will be on more friendly terms with the rest of the world than the current one, esp. so if you consider that many of the problems the United States face are not to be solved by any nation of the world alone, but are global issues. I just hope my absentee ballot will arrive in time, so I can do my part.

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