Posts Tagged ‘Professor’

Central Michigan University’s 9/11 Memorial: Patriots, Professors, Protestors, and All

September 11, 2008

Alright, so today the College Republicans at Central Michigan University held our annual September 11th memorial, where we put out 2,998 flags on the lawn next to our library.  I’ll go ahead and put those pictures below, and talk about what all happened today after the pictures:


So, anyway, I had stayed up all through the night (English paper), headed over to set up at 5:45 A.M. EDT.  We started setting up at 6:00, and finished by 7:15, then had some Timbits and coffee.  I went back to my dorm, grabbed my backpack and headed to Calculus II.  My professor kinda made me angry in not observing the campus-wide moment of silence at 8:46 A.M.

After Calc II, I headed back over to watch the flags (it’s sad, but we actually need people to watch them to make sure they don’t get kicked over – it happened last year).  It was pretty uneventful until about noon, then 2 preachers who’ve been on campus all week showed up, and they were preaching stuff like, “Catholics are going to hell.  Homosexuals are going to hell.  Smokers are going to hell.  Obama is a Muslim.  Masturbators are going to hell.  I sinned in college, but I changed my ways.  Change your ways or you’re going to hell.”  We knew they were gonna be there, so me and one of the other College Republicans (CRs) went over and asked him if he could move, since we were trying to have a 9/11 memorial.

Just like I figured, he said, “9/11 was a sign and a punishment from God.”  So we just left and headed back to the flags (the preacher is that big clump of people in picture 4).

We then had a few people come by and pray by the memorial.  The first guy I saw was a Catholic priest who I could tell had a few tears fall from his eyes, and that was pretty powerful.  We had some professors come and tell us thank you for doing what we were doing.  We had a decent amount of people taking pictures.

It wasn’t too bad, but then some real Christians came along to try to drown him out, and that attracted a crowd.  I went on the Internet and tried to find any law he was breaking, but he was doing everything legally.  So, we just dealt with it.  So around 1:00 P.M., the crowd around the preacher(s) is so huge that it’s overflowing onto the grass where our flags are.  People are going around the group, since the sidewalk is blocked, and are stepping through the flags, trampling some of them.  So we move a corner of the flags to give people more space, and we had some CRs stand as a buffer between the flags and the crowd.  We asked whoever came through the flags not to step through the flags, and everybody said, “Oh, I’m sorry,” and didn’t do it again.

Then comes this guy – he walks through a LARGE part of the flags, way more than anybody else had, so one of the CRs says, “Can you please not walk through the flags.”  He replied, “I don’t support the troops.”  Well, I nearly lost it there.  First of all, how can you not realize what memorial this is?  This has nothing to do with the troops, this has to do with INNOCENT PEOPLE JUST LIKE HIM!  And even if you oppose the war, you don’t oppose the troops.  I wanted to just go after him and yell at him, but restrained myself and my mouth (had I have written this post right after that, it would’ve been in all caps and I’d be struggling not to drop swear words every 2 words).  That really angered me – how can somebody be so heartless as to step on American flags and then shrug it off because they don’t support the troops or remember the tragedy that happened today.

So, at about 1:50 P.M., I headed off to English.  I went back to my dorm to drop off my stuff and came back around 3:45 P.M.  At this point, I still haven’t eaten, so I’m beginning to ge a little bit hungry, but I just stayed and watched the flags.  At 4:50 I went to a meeting and got back around 6:30.  We started taking down the flags and rolled them all back up (we didn’t have too many broken ones this time – last year it was really cold and the ground was hard, so a lot of them snapped).  We handed a few flags out to people passing by, and had one guy stop and just start helping us, so that was pretty cool.

Then, we packed everything up, and I headed back to my dorm to write this.

Overall, it was a good day.  I couldn’t help but get teary eyed looking at all those flags, knowing that each one represented a life, a family who was now missing a loved one.  And I can’t help it now.

September 11, 2001 was a terrible day, but we need memorials like the one we did today to remind people of that date.  It was sad to see people not realize why there were flags there (yes, we had people actually ask what it was for), or see the hate of that one man who stepped on the flags.

America needs to remember today – we can never afford to forget.

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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Michigan’s Top House Race: Gary Peters vs. Joe Knollenberg (vs. Quacky Dr. Jack Kevorkian)

May 13, 2008

The following post is also being syndicated on Right Michigan, where I was offered a position to cover Michigan’s 9th District:

I would first like to thank Nick for allowing me the opportunity to cover stories on the race for Michigan’s 9th District for his site.

First, what exactly is Michigan’s 9th District?

It’s Oakland, Bloomfield, Southfield, and West Bloomfield townships; parts of Orion and Waterford townships; the cities of Farmington, Farmington Hills, Orchard Lake, Keego Harbor, Sylvan Lake, Pontiac, Auburn Hills, Rochester Hills, Rochester, Troy, Clawson, Royal Oak, Berkley, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills and Lake Angelus; and the villages of Franklin, Bingham Farms and Beverly Hills (bold indicates where Representative Knollenberg won; italics indicate a close margin; villages were not categorized since they do not vote on their own).  Or, for you visual people, it’s this:

What are the demographics?

  1. 83.1% White
  2. 8.1% Black
  3. 5.6% Asian
  4. 3.0% Hispanic
  5. 0.5% Native American
  6. 0.5% Other

So, how does the district vote?

  • The district has been given Cook Partisan Index of R+0, meaning that the district is more Republican than other average districts, but by less than 1%.
  • The district voted for George Bush in 2004.
  • The district voted for Al Gore in 2000 (although the make-up of the district was different from now).
  • The district has voted for Joe Knollenberg since 2002.

Why is this race so important?

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) placed this district in the top 13 districts that they are targetting in their Red to Blue campaign.

What exactly is the Red to Blue campaign?

The DCCC put out this press release explaining the campaign:

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee today announced the first round of Red to Blue candidates challenging Republican incumbents. This is the second slate of Democratic congressional candidates that have qualified for the competitive DCCC Red to Blue program, the first slate was for candidates in open seats. These candidates earned a spot in the program by surpassing demanding fundraising goals and skillfully demonstrating to voters that they stand for change and will represent new priorities when elected to Congress.

These candidates have come out of the gate strong and the Red to Blue Program will give them the financial and structural edge to be even more competitive in November,” said Chairman Chris Van Hollen, Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “The candidates for change in our first round of challenger Red to Blue are strong examples of Democrats who represent a commitment to new priorities for the families in their districts.

The Red to Blue program highlights top Democratic campaigns across the country, and offers them financial, communications, and strategic support. The program will introduce Democratic supporters to new, competitive candidates in order to help expand the fundraising base for these campaigns.

Chairman Van Hollen joined Red to Blue co-chairs Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), Artur Davis (D-AL), and Bruce Braley (D-IA) to announce the first 13 challenger candidates for change who qualified for the Red to Blue:

Kay Barnes (MO-06)
Anne Barth (WV-02)
Darcy Burner (WA-08)
Robert Daskas (NV-03)
Steve Driehaus (OH-01)
Jim Himes (CT-04)
Christine Jennings (FL-13)
Larry Kissell (NC-08)
Suzanne Kosmas (FL-24)
Eric Massa (NY-29)
Gary Peters (MI-09)
Mark Schauer (MI-07)
Dan Seals (IL-10)
Red to Blue was a proven success in the 2004 and 2006 cycles. In 2004, the Red to Blue program raised nearly $7.5 million for twenty seven campaigns across the country with an average of more than $250,000 per campaign. In 2006, the Red to Blue program raised nearly $22.6 million for 56 campaigns with an average of $404,000 per campaign. Red to Blue was also responsible for solidifying the structure of dozens of campaigns and making a real difference for Democrats across America.

Soon after the DCCC put this up on their website, they got some comments about these candidates not being what’s best for the party in terms of stances, but the fact that they’ll be able to raise large amounts of money:

Your only criteria for inclusion seem to be fund-raising ability, not issues.
Isn’t this what scuttled the progress of the party over the years since
you deep-sixed progressive programs and started going to corporations hat in hand?

Soon after other negative comments, the DCCC disabled comments on that press release.

What were the results of the 2006 Election?

  1. Joe Knollenberg (R) 142,290 51.56%
  2. Nancy Skinner (D) 127,620 46.21%
  3. Adam Goodman (L) 3,702 1.34%
  4. Matthew R. Abel (G) 2,468 0.89%

Is this actually close?

For Knollenberg, it is somewhat close, since he was a 14-year incumbent, but he still won by over 5%.

So, who exactly is Gary Peters?

Gary Peters is running against Representative Knollenberg.  He was a state Senator from 1994-2002, when he was term-limited out.  He then ran against Mike Cox for Attorney General in 2002, where he lost the general election.

He was the Michigan Lottery Commissioner from 2003-2007.

He was hired to teach at Central Michigan University, where he was the center of controversy (that’s a way too long story to tell, so just read The Peters Report or my category of posts on him here, or just search “Gary Peters” here on the Right Michigan website).

Who is Jack Kevorkian?

Jack Kevorkian is a doctor who was sent to jail a few years ago for assisting a patient in committing suicide.  Dr. Kevorkian hired attorney Geoffrey Fieger to represent him in that case, but obviously, he lost.  He was sentenced for 10-25 years, but only served 8, after the parole board let him out early due to his kidney illness.  He was expected to die within a year of leaving prison in May of 2006, but instead, he decided to run for Congress, against Joe Knollenberg and Gary Peters.

How will having Dr. Kevorkian running affect the race?

That is somewhat hard to tell.  I have done some calculations.  In 1998, Proposal B was brought before voters to allow for assisted suicide.  Although it failed statewide as well as in Oakland County, it did better than average in the 9th District (33.05%-66.95%).  I did some calculations, and if we assume that only 75% of voters who voted against the proposal vote for Knollenberg in 2008, Knollenberg would still come out with a win just above 50%.  Peters would received around 45%, and Kevorkian would receive 5%.

This assumes that Kevorkian only gets 5%, and I think he will get a little more from the Democrats who are unsatissfied with the direction of the party.  So, if we assume that Kevorkian gets 8%, 2% more from Peters and 1% from swing-Knollenberg-voters (libertarians), we would have Knollenberg with 49%, Peters with 43% and Kevorkian with 8%.  This leaves plenty of room for Knollenberg to lose a few voters who are mad at the Republican party an the Iraq War, but I think Knollenberg is pretty safe this election.

Again, I’d like to thank Nick for allowing me to report on this race.

Next week, I’ll be looking into some of the fundraising of this race.

Done Analyzing,

Ranting Republican
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Bipartisan Lawyers Agree: McCain is a Natural Born Citizen

March 28, 2008

The debate began when a complaint was filed on March 6th to the U.S. District Court in Riverside, CA, by Riverside lawyer Andrew Aames, a registered Republican who was formerly a Democrat.  He claimed that a judge needed to step in and decide whether or not John McCain is a “natural born” citizen, because if he is not, he cannot serve as President under the Constitution.  The problem is that the Constitution never defined a natural born citizen.

McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone (a U.S. territory when McCain was born [August 29th, 1936]) while his father was stationed there in the Navy.  His mother was also an American citizen.

The 2 lawyers, former Solicitor General Ted Olson (R-McCain) and Harvard Law Professor Laurence H. Trive (D-Obama), issued a statement saying, “Based on the original meaning of the Constitution, the Framers’ intentions, and subsequent legal and historical precedent, Senator McCain’s birth to parents who were U.S. citizens, serving on a U.S. military base in the Panama Canal Zone in 1936, makes him a ‘natural born citizen’ within the meaning of the Constitution.”

Presumably, the judge will still have to reach a decision, but I think McCain is just fine in running.

Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO-Obama) has introduced a bill that would define a “natural born citizen” as “anyone born to any U.S. citizen while serving in the active or reserve components of the U.S. armed forces” (Newsmax).  Obama has joined in sponsoring the bill.

Again, I think that McCain is perfectly fine and has nothing to worry about.

Done Reporting,

Ranting Republican
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