Past Time To Act On Guns

Momsgunssign-sm

Many have found it particularly distressing given how little has been accomplished to assure citizens that they are safe from mass shootings and gun violence.

Moms, family and friends gathered to protest this past weekend – to demand action for a change.

In recent days, in Virginia Beach, a city employee killed 12 people and injured four more in a municipal building.

The killer carried two lawful .45 caliber handguns but he also had a silencer and an extended capacity ammo magazine.  The large magazine meant he didn’t have to re-load and could continue to shoot longer and kill or wound more innocents. Continue reading

The Wind That Blows

offtheedgeWhat’s lost in the current impeachment debate is the fundamental disregard for the law – like it can be ignored with impunity.

When in NY with friends, I offered up a passage from Robert Bolt’s “A Man for All Seasons” about why the law matters, why its disregard is not harmless but is devastating.

Sir Thomas More’s son in law, Roper, instructs More to just say he’s devoted to a faith More did not embrace, and thus to save himself.

This is the exchange -

Roper: So now you’d give the Devil benefit of law!

More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

Roper: I’d cut down every law in England to do that!

More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you — where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country’s planted thick with laws from coast to coast — man’s laws, not God’s — and if you cut them down — and you’re just the man to do it — d’you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake. Continue reading

End the Development Mania!

trafficDON’T DEVELOP EVERY SQUARE INCH OF LOUDOUN – that’s what the developers want – and some Supervisors are trying to figure out how they can serve these masters of dystopia and fool us all into thinking this is the best we can do, and that they did the best they could with a difficult set of facts. Nonsense!

This kind of thinking will ravage our community already suffering from density, traffic jams and a loss of lifestyle.

There are 45,000 homes in the existing pipeline.

We don’t need these – and we don’t need anymore.

The communities from one end of the county to the other have said STOP THIS DEVELOPMENT.

We get a head nod – like we’re being heard – they say we’re being heard – but we are “instructed” by our reps that we just have to have more housing.

So much for representative government.  We said no but they bow to the arrogant development community that wants more, greedy, not satisfied with what they already have.  They want more.

We are overrun with lies and deceptions about “what we need.”

SEND A MESSAGE TO THE BOARD – lean on them – say “WE WANT NO NEW HOUSES.”  Enough already.

Tell our Supervisors if any of you vote to bring on new houses, then we vote to have new supervisors – to over-ride what you’ve done to destroy this county and our way of life – and we do this without regard to party – as this is about how we live where we live.

If you’re really our friends, elected to represent those of us who live here, then hear what we’re saying, and if you really care for us – stop this boondoggle right now.

As for my friends and neighbors, tell everyone who will listen to you at the water cooler or a parent teachers meeting, that each of us citizens in Loudoun County is going to demand that any candidate for the board say where he or she is on this issue.

Let’s make it crystal clear that we really mean what we’ve been saying for years – at every step of this manipulative “evolving” process that has tried to get us to bow to what we know is wrong.

If a candidate for the board doesn’t have the right answer, cashier him or her.

If the candidate has the right answer, support him or her.

Let’s make this hard for the developers who care not at all what we say or may suffer and make this easy for us.

Let’s get to work!

High Time To Impeach?

Inaug_Capitol_at_dawn2

Our Chief Executive, Donald Trump, has been under investigation, starting with the 2016 presidential campaign, when he was a candidate, for selling out the nation to the Russians to get elected.

Perhaps, in exchange, Trump was expected to ease sanctions against Russia should he get elected.

Russia’s digital black jobs and widespread high tech deceits were contrived to influence the election entirely to Trump’s benefit.

Former FBI Director Comey refused to assure Trump he was not under investigation, nor would he give Trump’s security adviser Mr. Flynn a pass for concealing talks that Flynn had about sanctions with the Russian Ambassador.

Trump fired Comey because of the Russian investigation, and said so.

After 22 months, Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who picked up where Comey left off, had a lot to say about Russia’s misconduct, but reserved his most forceful analysis for 10 instances of obstruction by Mr. Trump.

Mueller wrote a road map for the U.S. Congress to consider possible impeachment.

Remember how Shakespeare wrote of a ruler’s corrupting influence on a nation state.

Hamlet said, “The time is out of joint; – O cursed spite.”

He continued, “That ever I was born to set it right!”

Our time is “out of joint” and we must very soon “set it right.” Continue reading

An American Tragedy – Donald Trump

It was about a month after Donald Trump was “elected” President by the electoral college, and not by a popular vote.

I was swimming laps at the Ida Lee pool in Leesburg, and had stopped to retrieve a kicking board from the pool deck.

Trump_king3The woman, the next swimming lane over, said, “I used to love listening to the news.”

I could think of no words to ease her dismay.

A moment passed, and she continued, “I’ve gotten rid of my TV.”

Across the nation, our friends and neighbors have found different ways to cope with a President who is a brute.

On twitter today, a friend said that she played Jimi Hendrix’s “All along the Watchtower” over and over, shouting the lyrics, “There must be some kind of way outta here” given there’s “too much confusion” and “I can’t get no relief.”

Millions deal with the psychic pain of the Trump presidency by shutting Trump out of their consciousness. Continue reading

Farms Fight to Prosper Despite Residential Development

A controversial proposed residential development model in Western Loudoun

A controversial proposed residential development model in Western Loudoun

In recent days, Chairwoman Phyllis Randal said, “The [Loudoun County] Board of Supervisors ha[s] made it a priority to preserve our farmland and support those who are putting their land to great use.”

A recent USDA report concluded that, as of 2017, Loudoun County had 1,259 farms covering 121,932 acres.

There is good and bad news in this USDA report.

The bad news is that the number of farms are shrinking and we are losing acreage.

The good news is that there is an uptick in farm income, even as there is a loss of farm acreage and despite a serious reduction in federal funds that previously supported Ag in Loudoun County.  Continue reading

WV Board of Educaton Tells Rock Wool “Not So Fast”

Rockwool_protest

The Jefferson County Board of Education (BOE) has announced its intent to seize the Ranson, WV land where the Rockwool Plant broke ground, so that it may build a student center instead; in response, Rockwool has filed a civil rights action in federal court last Friday to stop the seizure so that it may remain where it is and open shop sooner rather than later.

From Ranson, WV to Maryland to Loudoun County, citizens have been concerned about the fallout from the Rockwool plant in Ranson, WV; there are estimates that there may be as much as 392 tons of pollution headed east to Loudoun from Ranson, WV when (and if) the plant is up and running.

392 tons of pollution from WV’s Rockwool “coming our way.”

392 tons of pollution from WV’s Rockwool “coming our way.”

Continue reading

The Board of Supervisors Favors More Development Over Math and Science

A simple Algebra problem

A simple Algebra problem

I was in the Lovettsville Library the other day, looking at a 3 D pair of plastic glasses made on a state of the art printer at the Leesburg library, and a library patron asked if I’d heard that the County had killed a state of the art math and science library for the County.

It’s true, they have.

Our elected leaders almost always favor development that covers and destroys open fields and trees and wild life so developers can build more roads and small artificial parks where once were rolling fields and trees.

In this dystopic world of excess development, one tragic irony is that our Loudoun County Board of Supervisors has decided to steal funds dedicated to a science and tech library and to spend it instead on roads and parks!

Could we possibly make worse choices in this County, that passes itself off as a high tech community, and among the wealthiest in the nation, than to disfavor advancement in science and math?

America has been steadily sliding in global education rankings for decades. Continue reading

Some Questions About That Walkway in the Flood Plain

Segment of Walkway – West side of Berlin Turnpike – South of Lovettsville

Segment of Walkway – West side of Berlin Turnpike – South of Lovettsville

There have been questions about the extension of Lovettsville’s walking trail into moving waters in a flood plain, and building a walkway in that flood plain and altering the flow and direction of a watercourse.

That’s not to say there aren’t answers.

A flood plain is an area of low-lying ground adjacent to a river, formed mainly of river sediments and subject to flooding.

The trail extending south from Lovettsville has taken a path through a flood plain and running waters. Continue reading

The Irish Spirit!

Catherine McCoy and Edward Applegate, her American husband

Catherine McCoy and Edward Applegate, her American husband

The Irish found their way to America, especially in 1846 with the Potato Famine.

My maternal grandmother, Catherine McCoy, was born in Ireland on May 9, 1897 and was baptized according to the Rites of the Catholic Church in the Church of St. Patrick, Crossmaglen, in the County of Armagh.

Catherine came to America.

Even in her sixties, you were certain that Grandma Catherine must have just breezed in from Ireland the day before because, what this delicate lady described, with her slight brogue, and her blazing blue eyes, was a vivid word picture of honest hard working folk, in Irish villages and towns, helping each other and trusting in their faith to make it all right.  Continue reading