The SOTU: Boycotts are Pointless

PREFACE: For those reading this article, Article II, Section 3 of the United States Constitution, requires the President of the United States to “periodically give to Congress, information of the State of the Union, and to recommend to Congress, consideration of such measures as he [the President] shall judge necessary and expedient.”

State_of_The_Union (SOTU)

In the days prior to the Mr. Donald J. Trump’s first State of the Union (SOTU) address as president, I have heard and read comments from a number of people – both on and off social media, expressing their intent not to watch its broadcast on TV and on the internet nor listen to it on the radio. I’ve also seen a few social media political pages which outright called for followers of their page to boycott the SOTU by not watching or listening to it. The reasons for such a boycott just seemed silly to me…at least much too silly for me to repeat any of them in this blog article.
*sigh*
Here’s the thing: People are free to [legally] do whatever they want, including refusing to watch and/or listen to Mr. Trump’s (or to any U.S. president’s) SOTU address. Fine. However, I refuse to partake in such willful ignorance. Frankly, as far as I’m concerned, refusing to watch/listen to any SOTU and/or to any address delivered by a U.S. president to both houses of Congress is sheer willful ignorance. People need to realize that the SOTU is not like going to or boycotting a political campaign speech by some political hopeful. The State of the Union (SOTU) is the constitutionally-mandated report to Congress – to our elected legislative representatives. No American citizen ever has to believe nor support a word of it.

You see, I see absolutely no point in not watching or in “boycotting” the SOTU – regardless of how I or anyone else feels about the person [holding the office of President] delivering that constitutionally-required important address to the full body of Congress and to the American people. Furthermore, I feel that people who choose not to listen to/boycott the SOTU address, yet at the same time, consider themselves to be so-called “woke” and politically aware of the political happenings in American government, are shortchanging themselves; possibly even setting themselves up to be judged and/or thought of as hypocritical in their so-called expressions of “woke-ness” and political awareness. [Yes, I said it!]

Still, I’m nothing if not fair. And so, I acknowledge the possibility (albeit very unlikely) that perhaps I’ve missed something in the reasoning and supposed logic some people have to boycott the SOTU. I’d be quite interested in learning what one hoped to have gained by refusing to watch/listen to Mr. Trump deliver the SOTU to Congress. To be clear, I am no fan of Mr. Donald. J. Trump. I never have been. I am no fan of Mr. Trump’s administration. And so far, Mr. Trump has not put into effect any policy which I can support. Still, I felt it was important that I watch and listen to the SOTU – just as I’ve done to many of the SOTUs delivered by Mr. Trump’s predecessors over the years.

Trump's First SOTU (30JAN2018)Regardless of my feelings about Mr. Trump (and I have many which are negative), I consider watching and listening carefully to Mr. Trump address my nation’s elected legislative representatives as both an intelligent and educational benefit to my mind and to my state of political awareness. Watching and listening to the SOTU doesn’t necessarily mean that I will believe and/or support any part or all of the content of that particular address nor does it mean or imply that I support the president and/or his agenda in any way, shape, or form. It simply doesn’t.

Given the opportunity and the means, I feel every abled-bodied citizen of a free republic should always carefully watch, listen, and learn what their nation’s leader is doing, the accomplishments that leader claims to have made while in office, what that leader wants and/or plans to do while in office, and to at least consider whether to hear and/or read an accounting of such when that leader gives any mandated and official report to the elected representatives of the people of that nation. It’s important!

Thus, when the President of the United States – no matter who that person is, addresses the full legislative body of Congress – and that address is able to be broadcasted on all forms of electronic and non-electronic media, I feel every able-bodied American citizen has a certain responsibility to try to watch and listen to what that president has to say. Furthermore, I feel that each citizen who watches that important national address should also take note of various reactions made by members of Congress in attendance [at the SOTU] regarding each point made by the president – as well as to the comments made by those attending members of Congress at the completion of the president’s address.

In short, refusing to watch or deciding to boycott the SOTU address is, in a word, silly. Except for perhaps losing an hour or two out of one’s evening, I doubt that there’s anything else anyone can lose simply by watching and/or listening to the address or reading it in print later. If nothing else, there are certainly a few things one can learn.

– RobFather X

 

TV Award Shows

Ophrah Winfrey-Gloden Globes_2018I was asked for my thoughts about Oprah Winfrey’s speech at the Golden Globes Awards last evening (January 7, 2018). Here’s my response: I did not watch the Golden Globes awards show but did hear parts of her speech on the news this morning. All I care to say about it is: Nice, but what about it? Big deal. I didn’t care. NEXT!

I also learned that Ms. Winfrey may consider – or at one time, she may have considered, a presidential run. Uh-huh. Well, as a fellow American citizen she certainly has that right. However, that would be something which I’d seriously hate to see happen.

The reason I didn’t watch that awards show (nor will watch any other) is because of how I feel about television award shows in general. I feel every last one of them is a huge waste of television coverage, pointless in nature, and for most of the participants and/or awardees, a sheer demonstration of personal egotism and vanity. Thus, I despise such shows and won’t waste my time watching them. And if by some odd chance I was ever offered/given an invitation to attend one of those shows, I wouldn’t accept. Why would or should I accept an invitation to some event for which I have no positive feelings?

– RobFather X

Acts of Patriotic Defiance

Yesterday, [August 14, 2017] protesters in Durham, North Carolina [U.S.] toppled a 100-year-old statue dedicated to the [then] Confederate States of America (commonly referred to as the Confederacy). Things like that shown in the video (which has gone viral on social media) will be happening by many brave people in other parts of the southern United States and in a number of public places in the U.S. where statues or monuments sit that represent, symbolize or give honor to ideas or advocates of racism, bigotry and other forms of hatred. Watch the video clip:

As an American citizen but more importantly as a person who detests all images, symbols and/or messages of social hatred and bigotry in my country (as well as those in other places around the world), I’m completely in support of legally (but safely) bringing down and having destroyed, any statue, sculpture, monument and/or building sitting on American pubic soil which represents, symbolizes, honors, advocates and/or sends a message of racial hatred and bigotry – or the history of that sort. Future generations of Americans can read about the record of racial hatred and bigotry in the United States; we don’t need to erect, keep or maintain physical monuments to it. Still, while watching the video clip showing a few brave American citizens toppling a statue that was dedicated to the then-Confederate States of America, I couldn’t help but chuckle (not mock, but simply chuckle) at the scene of those persons who did just a little more than that to the inanimate object. (Watch the video again.)

You see, I wouldn’t waste my saliva nor risk hurting or breaking my foot (nor any other body part) on a thing made of materials like metal, marble, plaster, cement or resin, et al; particularly not on a thing which never received life and attacked me. I understand the significance of one spitting on and kicking and hitting a statue. However, those particular acts neither mean anything much nor will they do any more damage than that which has already been done by bird droppings (aka feces or shit), the harsh heat of the sun, acid rain, and winter’s cold and ice during the statue’s existence.

Here’s the point of my message: When tearing down and/or destroying an object whose existence or presence either symbolizes, represents or honors a social and/or moral wrong – or the history of such wrong, I think one should perform those acts of sociopolitical defiance by using good mindful sense and by taking a personally safe and healthy approach. Few things in this world – such as statue and/or building vandalism or destruction, are ever worth hurting, seriously injuring or possibly killing oneself in the process. History rarely remembers martyrs of sociopolitical causes, especially none who haven’t been identified. And remember: the town or city where one has hurt/injured or killed him or herself while in the act of doing those patriotic things of defiance isn’t necessarily obligated to cover that person’s medical, funeral and burial or cremation expenses. Just a little something to think about.
Carry on, patriot!

– RobFather X

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© RobFather X! Productions

No “Weirdness of Being Black” for Me

RobFather X  (face)I can relate to Atlanta comic artist Cory Thomas’ illustration shown in this link but please; after five decades of living and being aware of my world, I see simply a social norm, not any “strange new reality” or “weirdness of being Black” in everyday life for me and other people of color who live and/or work with White people after Donald Trump’s election to the U.S. presidency.

CHECK IT: Though I live, work and play in a valley which consists of any number of closeted and openly racists and bigots, I – unlike some, shall fear no evil mindset, heart, attitude or spiritual character held or expressed by any man, woman or child. For I have been raised, adequately trained, educated, tried and tested to always be on the ready to fearlessly put such people in check and – when necessary, to aggressively further defend myself against any negative mental and/or physical onslaught against my person. In short, one would be most wise not to ever come for me unless I specifically send for them.
#nofear

– RobFather X

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© RobFather X! Productions

Election Fight Night 2016 (2)

Seriously, many of you should not get so angry or upset about something over which you have no control. Within ten hours time (maybe less), some of us will be happy, some us will be unhappy and some of us will simply feel somewhere in between the two. It’s the way things are every four years in an American presidential election. If you did your civic duty of voting for the candidate of your choice then you should be damn proud of that fact! After the final and official results of the presidential election are in – and hopefully after one of the two major candidates makes his or her concession speech, you would do well to do yourselves a favor and get a grip on the reality of things and prepare to move on. To do otherwise is simply not worth the stress.

– RobFather X