We Created Discrimination​

Many believe that prejudice is influenced or taught in the home. I suspect that could be a plausible argument. However, I tend to think that forms of discrimination are formed from particular events. I would cite such facts such as soldiers being deployed to Iraq and engaging with faction groups posing as soldiers. It could also be argued that military leadership paints a portrait of Muslim culture or middle easterners as radicals. We commonly hear and see this rhetoric often by soldiers displaying “morale” patches or scribbled helmet sayings similar to the days of “Commie Killer” adorned on cold war helmets.

But why are Americans suddenly anti-Latino or anti-Mexican? Immigrants typically embrace jobs that American youth won’t take or apply. Is it that unfair prejudice is actually our malice and bitterness is that they are employable while most American youth won’t take a moment to apply? It reminds me of the days where migrant workers filled American farmlands picking anything from cotton to yams far less in wages, benefits, and protections than the typical American worker. Generations beforehand worked side by side to pass on time treasured traditions ensuring that families would hopefully pass on to future generations. Eventually, those generations abandoned the hard and heat sweltering work. This the era of migrants to fill the slack left by younger generations to seek higher education or other employment means. It was American farmers that opened the floodgates to welcome anyone that would take jobs ranging from farms, manufacturing, production lines, janitorial, cooking, and other low paying or low skill jobs. Today we see job construction sites filled with not faces of the typical white or afro-American worker. Instead, we see construction sites all over America with a diverse mix of Hispanic and foreign workers. What I don’t understand is companies and individuals insist on hiring Latino workers while at the same time treat them as potential criminals or quasi-servants. It is as if the middle and low class of Americans have somewhat created the underclass of society that will work but ridicules that class for taking all the jobs available in the first place? It doesn’t make sense, but we use immigration law to argue about the legality of something Americans skirted the law in the first place.

When any form of leadership creates a dialog that a particular group of people is criminally prone with no facts to support it, then perception becomes a reality. Influences such as hate-filled speech lead to discrimination. With that being said, Latinos as a whole in America have been falsely criminalized. There are those that oppose such language but appear to be falling on deaf ears or silenced by the power of government influence. Folks, a lot can happen in four years during a Presidential cycle. But what has transpired over the past year has the recipe of leading from political divisions towards a severe civil war where the firestarter could come from the Latino community – and legitimately so. I certainly do not wish or want any forms of fighting. But individuals within society have a right to protect their integrity and stability that they refrain from becoming labeled or wrongly classified. When certain politicians decide to take it upon themselves to invoke religious scripture, then society may experience repercussions like no other they have witnessed.

A suggestion to return to some form of normalcy is for Americans to accept responsibilities that they habitually cut corners by outsourcing, allowing immigrants, don’t enforce hiring practices, and skirt issues to get ahead. It is somewhat strikingly similar where Americans would foolishly recommend that if African Americans were not happy with America that they could go back to Africa. Such exaggeration is not only stupid but a magnification of how and where discrimination and bigotry originates.

Every so many decades Americans disdain for other cultures publically airs its own forms of prejudice. Such recent events are when Japan during the 1970’s gas crisis began importing cars to the United States. 1980 were when China started to import cheaper manufactured goods. 1990 were when people from India began infiltrating customer service and high tech job markets. 2000 when suddenly Mexicans that had been here in the millions were decidedly a threat to Caucasian populations. Perhaps we should take a moment and remember that the melting pot doesn’t belong to any race, religion, creed, sex, or identity. Just because you discover it doesn’t make it exclusively yours. We are a society elected by people supposedly of laws. But when we create laws to enforce upon a particular class of people, then we are no longer a democracy.

Hyperloop Hype

Anyone that travels internationally will usually convey enjoyment and awe at train efficiency in Europe or Japan. When you consider the overwhelming number of ridership not to mention a wonderfully efficient and clean mass transit system you have to wonder why this couldn’t be a staple of the American experience.

 

For starters, it was America that delivered the automobile as a form of independent travel requirements. However, long before the car was horse and buggy or the transcontinental railroad. As the automobile and flight grew into efficiency, the rail system seemed to be outsourced to the industry as a method of moving goods and services. People were and continue to be excluded from the rail experience in America because for some reason it is not efficient?

 

Despite Europe, Japan, China and other nations embracing rail need as a cost savings entity our country seems hell-bent at protecting the automobile. In fact, the stigma of not having an auto and opting for mass transit may accidentally label individuals as no longer qualified to drive because of legal reasons. Trains, buses, and mass transit have become a lesser standard of independence and status whereas the automobile is valued as a personal statement. Watching motorists with oversized SUV’s perhaps squeaking out 12 miles per gallon driving alone doesn’t entirely demonstrate our willingness to become more sustainable. Instead, sustainability is nothing more than a marketing word that people use when separating waste materials.

 

What if the United States began to reinvest in the rail system once again? Sure, it will be an expensive endeavor. The expense comes at a cost because we have neglected a system created a hundred years ago preceding to high-speed interstate highways with overrun budgets and periodic surface repavings. The last time Amtrak introduced a new high-speed locomotive was the in the year 2000 when the Acela Express entered service. That indicates that Federal Transportation Administration is not concerned with replacing aged out rail locomotives. To make matters worse, the Acela Express broke apart in early 2018. If this were an aircraft, there would be orders and inspections to ensure the highest level of public safety. As for the typical U.S. rail system, it is viewed as the lower tier of service. In fact, bus travel is higher than rail service because of the limited destinations trains may travel.

 

A reason we don’t have a bullet train in America is that we don’t have the right rail system and protections in place to allow high-speed rail. Additionally, there is no competition with Amtrak whereas Ford, Chevrolet, and other automakers share the same roads. Moreover, the typical American transportation hub doesn’t create a practical design where trains, planes, and buses meet at an apex point. Instead, planes are at remote airports, buses are located on the shady side of town, and train stations… well, if you find one, let me know. America created the design flaw, and perhaps the automotive industry had its fingers in the pie to allow that to occur.

 

With all the talk about a hyperloop system seems somewhat like a fantasy scene from the Jetson’s cartoon. Why on earth would a hyperloop work in American when we cant even develop and maintain a capable working rail system? Sure, it sounds impressive, and personally, I would celebrate the day such an endeavor reaches the average American. However, I am not as optimistic because a hyperloop must endure the same identical bureaucratic standards as the rails system or anywhere land is developed. In the meantime, I will keep watching the Jetson’s and pretending we live in such a world.

To Russia with Minuscule Love

For the life of me, I have been attempting to wrap my head around why Donald Trump is so interested in closer relations with Russian President Vladimir Putin. It doesn’t take a degree in economics to understand that we have no real trade ties with Russia. Trade ties between the U.S. and Russia are minuscule, to say the least. In fact, Russia and the U.S. are free to antagonize each other because they have very little to lose economically from deteriorated relations and we have nothing to trade one another with. I have not overheard a recent Russian conversation where some rich guy in Moscow has always wanted one of our illustrious Buick Lacrosse sedans. To make matters darker with humor, you won’t find many Russian kids asking for that new American game console. The truth may be that kids 12 and under in Russia already know how to hack those game consoles.

 

So why all the attention from Trump? It’s somewhat like a twisted secret love affair that I have no be let in on? To be perfectly candid Russia doesn’t need anything from the United States. The people of Russia currently don’t trust Americans, and most of its population find Americans lazy and lacking in imagination. For example, Russians point that American culture is lazy and outsources everything. They think we eat out a lot. The Russians may be right on that one. Then there is something like the Ice Bucket Challenge in the U.S. for ALS awareness. Russia has the ultimate ice challenge; they just get naked and jump into a frozen lake. I don’t think American laws and insurance industries will allow us to keep up with the Russians on that one. Americans on the other hand only think of caviar, vodka and winter fur hats about Russian culture. Perhaps we there is some truth about our imagination. We were once a nation where our sworn enemy was Russia. But we hardly know anything about the nation other than what the media and a few 1970’s based history classes teach us. But that doesn’t present any argument on why Trump seeks better relations with Russia? Perhaps the quest is to get to know one another? That is only my best guess. The U.S. and Russia are codependent partners of China. Both nations greatly depend on manufacturing from China. Perhaps that is another strategy to bring jobs back to American and Russia? Let’s wait and see on that one.

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What personally find interesting is the similarities of Trump and Putin. They both are somewhat similar in how they address the camera. It is entirely off script. But it should be noted that Putin is brilliant with a hint of being sinister. Putin doesn’t need Twitter. He has an entire intelligence community and cabinet at his disposal to delve out concerns. If Putin wants to get a message across, then it may have already occurred and left before you get the Tweet. Trump, on the other hand, craves the media attention and loves to Tweet. While the media is dissecting a Trump tweet is has a team of people that never spoke with him telling you the opposite argument while Trump has moved to the next tweet only to say, “why are you listening to them?”

 

It is fair to say that Russia and the U.S. have a long way to go in diplomacy. While we are mostly concerned about what Trump may be accidentally sharing with Putin is a cause for concern in addition to the allegations of Russia engaged in hacking. I will say that Russia may be our best first steps at healthy relationships because we already have Red Phone to communicate quickly with each other. We don’t seem to have those phones with China or other nations where our influence has deteriorated. Perhaps that is why dealing with Russia is a good first step to effective diplomacy. I’m not suggesting it is flawless or should be our first new Presidential attempt. But it may be the best possible scenario with the least amount of repercussions. Trump shoots from the hip and Putin responds better this way. I would much rather Trump talk to Putin than let us say North Korea, China or Saudi Arabia at this juncture for fear of saying something that could be misinterpreted or undiplomatic. I will say this for sure, our new Secretary of State will certainly have an unusual and difficult tenure during this administration.

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