A Tribute to the Commander-in-Thief

I was listening to the news on Wild102 out of Roseau recently and heard that the Social Security Administration announced a cost-of-living adjustment that will increase the average monthly check for social security recipients by $39 per month. An elderly lady was interviewed, and she was excited about the news, though she admitted most of the increase would likely go towards her husband’s medical care.

I felt the tears welling up with the unfairness of it all. So many people are barely getting by.

And yet … the entire country glossed over a critical tidbit in the news cycle a couple weeks back. Airtight evidence revealed that Trump and his family have defrauded the US government of more that $500 million in taxes over the years.

Half a BILLION dollars.

Stolen from our veterans, our teachers, our elderly, our kids.

And you and me? We had to make up for that $500 million that the Trump family didn’t pay. We paid what they wouldn’t, because we’re honest, hard-working folk, and we have higher expectations for ourselves than we do for the man 49% of us put in the White House.

Our grandparents get a $39/month raise and they are excited.

Our president and his family stole $500 million and we don’t blink an eye. In fact, based on the 2016 election, it’s likely that more than half of the people eligible for that $39/month boost will vote for Trump again.

Our kids have to sell frozen food, raffle tickets and magazines to participate in after-school activities. Our local small businesses pony up to sponsor the schools in myriad ways. Our teachers supply their classrooms with countless items out of their own pockets. Our farmers are committing suicide at an unprecedented rate. Our veterans are languishing in under-funded mental health programs. Our local seniors sell lefse to put a new roof on their senior center. The Meals-on-Wheels programs get stretched ever tighter every year. Even our Angle fire department had young girls painting faces to help them raise money for a new fire garage.

But our president and his family steals $500 million from all of us, and our community still lines up for their Trump 2020 bumper sticker.

He’s a liar. He’s a cheat. And he’s a thief.

Half a BILLION dollars.

He couldn’t name one single Bible verse when asked. He made fun of a reporter with physical disabilities. He promised that children separated from their parents at the border would be reunited by July 19, but he jets around to political rallies spewing his hate-language to his worshiping flock all while the number of babies behind bars continues to rise. His tariffs will cost American auto-maker Ford over $1B in profits resulting in 24,000 people losing their jobs. His trade negotiations have hurt farmers across the country so drastically, he had to implement a $12B aid package.

Many families in our area, including mine, have loved ones helping with the seasonal sugar beet harvest in western MN. They work away from home for 12-hour shifts in cold and dirty conditions to make an extra bit of money for the coming winter.

And most of them vote for a man who stole $500 million dollars from us.

He stole from you and me.

He stole from my 86-year old grandmother who still works 10-12 hour days running her resort.

He stole from my daughter who goes to the last one-room public school house in Minnesota which has had to scrape and save and beg and plead for recent funding to finally make changes to the aging structure.

He stole from my sister’s father-in-law who should have had world-class veteran’s care as he bravely fought and lost to cancer.

I have no patience for a thief and a liar, and you shouldn’t either.

When I hear an elderly woman tickled pink about $39 extra a month from a standard-of-living increase and juxtapose that against the proven fact that Trump stole half a billion dollars from us, first I get sad and then I get angry. He doesn’t deserve the support of the hardest working people in this country. He doesn’t deserve my family and neighbors sporting his name or his slogans on their beat-up vehicles. He doesn’t deserve your campaign contribution pennies.

He does not deserve you. You are good people. And he is not.

He steals from you. You are honest people. And he is not.

He sits in his golden tower or at his green golf courses with ocean views or behind the Oval Office desk that has represented the honor and dignity of our nation for centuries, and he laughs at you.

Don’t give him anything else to laugh at. And don’t let him turn you into another weapon in his arsenal.

Remember that $39/month vs. the $500 million he stole.

Remember.

He does not deserve you.

(Published in the October 16th issue of the Warroad Pioneer)

A Girl Can Dream

I want a president, not a predator. I want to read news about her kindness, not another social media attack. I want political nominees who aren’t accused of sexual assault, pedophilia, or all different manner of financial crimes. I want leaders who encourage and add to the melting pot, not those who strain out the white potatoes as their favorite part. Continue reading “A Girl Can Dream”

Togetherness: the greatest milestone

Joyce and Melvin Ortmann have known each other forever. Before there was 62 years of marriage. Before there was world travel. Before there was a quiet, shared grief upon losing their only daughter. Before there was a legacy of nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Before all that, they cross-country skied the snowy fields on the outskirts of Warroad while their parents visited over coffee. They played as kids do, tracking the snow, sliding the haystacks, coming back into the house wet and red-cheeked in their childhood joy. Continue reading “Togetherness: the greatest milestone”