The actually quote, spoken by desperate astronaut, John Swigert, aboard Apollo’s 13 when the mission ran into trouble, is “Houston, we’ve had a problem here!” As their space craft was hoping to be the third crew to land on the moon.  The messages the United States has been sending to the world is that we do have a problem here, actually numerous problems. When faced with a problem, it needs to be acknowledged.  Next, individual or individuals responsible for or burdened with the problem need to face it head on, coming up with a solution and then begin solving it. More on the last step later…

earth photo
Photo by The New York Public Library / Unsplash

     As a country, our number one problem we are faced with is LEADERSHIP. After Thursday’s debate, the United States has clearly showed the world our very weak hand when it comes to the top. We have poor leadership.  Let’s start at the top with leadership. I listen to the Tucker Carlson interview where he described that was told by someone who knows President Biden‘s family, that the President’s sister, Val, communicated to that person that the family was distressed that Joe was going to run for President because they knew that he had dementia.  If this is true then why would they put a loved one in a situation that they were unable to handle? This is not fair to that individual and it’s not fair to the American people. When you love someone you don’t put them in a situation they shouldn’t be in. Looking at this from the standpoint of it, as a daughter or a wife, for me, it’s hard to understand how this could happen, how someone could do this to a loved one. It’s a tragedy for President Biden that he was put in this situation.  I do not know whether this is true or not. I’m just reporting what I heard, but it mystifies me how people can do something that they know is wrong wrong from a personal standpoint and wrong from the standpoint of what it does to the wellbeing and safety to our country. Last week’s blog post had a theme of I wrote of “Living by the Golden Rule.”  On both accounts, this is not living by The Golden Rule (referring to the passage from the Bible, “In everything, do unto others as you would have them do unto you” Matthew 7:12). It was interesting to watch the comments after the debate, and it almost seemed as if most of the commentators on the left had all come to the same conclusion, that President Biden had a poor performance with many saying that he should be replaced as a candidate to run against the former President Trump.  The debate last week demonstrated to not only to the American people, but for the entire world to see, including or adversary leaders that our leader is asleep at the wheel and basically out of commission between the hours of 4 PM and 10 AM in the morning God help us if we have a crisis during those hours or really anytime.

white concrete building during night time
Photo by Tabrez Syed / Unsplash American’s leadership is lacking…

      For those who don’t like either candidate, these are our options (unless they do find a way to remove Joe Biden) Period.  For those Republicans who say that they will NOT vote for the former President, their refusal to vote is basically a vote for Joe Biden. Is that the leadership they are hoping for with the open border, reshaping the American population, out of control inflation and the long laundry list of problems?  Then who CAN take on the swamp of Washington DC who is not bought by big donors?  Who has the guts to run and put their family through the scrutiny of a microscope?  Who is the answer to lead this country?  Many in Great Britain did not like Winston Churchill’s personality, but HE WAS the leader for his time to get Britain through WWII and beyond.  Looking back, he was the right man for the job.  You cannot look at the personality you have to look at performance.  No one is perfect, we all have faults. Who can do the job.  A career politician may have experience in the system but how good are they at economic issues? A person who has run a business, balanced a ledger, made payroll, raised a successful family understands the everyday stresses of the average American.  A successful business person knows how to cut where they need to cut and get things done. The American economy is a business with a huge budget in need of balancing…

shallow focus photography of U.S. dollar banknotes
Photo by Madison Kaminski / Unsplash Our expenses are going up and our money does not go as far as it used to…

      Then there is the economy, with inflation so high, groceries increased so much in price over the last few years. Interest rates  have risen so high that young families find it hard to buy their first home and to pay basic living expenses.  

     Another problem our country is faced with is the border, or rather LACK OF a secure border with illegal immigrants coming in from all over the world, some without our knowledge and some criminals, terrorists, many have paid cartels for their passage and now indebted to them, much like an indentured servant. There is an increase in crimes caused by illegal immigrants with innocent American citizens left harmed, raped or killed. American tax paying citizens are paying for these illegals to be housed in hotels, fed, given phones and health care.  In some instances, they are given better benefits than our own citizens.  We also pay for legal representation to defend these individuals who BROKEN THE LAW BY COMING HERE ILLEGALLY.   This influx of people into the country stresses our own economic system and budget more than it already is.  Consider social security. It is for American citizen who have paid into they system over a life time.  Although really not enough alone to sustain a retirement, millions of Americans count on it.  Will it be there for them if we are paying out of that account for the millions of benefits to the illegals?  Although it may buy votes for the Democrats as they hope to redesign the make-up of the country as they transport these illegals to different parts of the country.  

brown wooden fence near green trees during daytime
Photo by Greg Bulla / Unsplash

      Next, consider how crime has increased in big cities and have you noticed that prosecutors are not doing their job when it comes to cracking down on crime.  From defunding the police, to releasing criminals onto the streets to commit more crimes, to over prosecuting individual who protect themselves as they try to make a living, like the bodega owner in NYC who was jailed for defending himself from being held up and shot and killed an intruder to his business or, in the case of former Marine, Daniel Penny, who attacked a man who was causing trouble, endangering fellow passengers on a New York City Subway car, killing the man, Jordan Neely.  Those in harms way at the time, were interviewed, explaining that they feared for their lives and appreciated Penny take charge in their defense.  Many innocent people, from a young man stabbed to death walking home from a wedding with his girlfriend on a sidewalk in Brooklyn, New York to a young Jewish couple hit by a hit and run driver killed on their way to deliver their first baby (also in Brooklyn), a young mom of five killed while hiking, a young student killed on a running path and on and on, crime is another problem our nation is faced with as well as police officers are expected to do their job with one hand tied behind their backs and they are fair game for criminals who decide to turn the gun on them…

     Another issue near the top of the list is an unfair justice system.  A justice system that does not enforce the law equally, that will plant evidence, make up stories, storm conservative citizens early in the morning or storm a senior citizen by sea in the wee hours of the night, startling those with opposing views, yet decide to look the other way when a privileged class is in question.  Consider how quickly the case of cocaine found in the living quarters of the White House nearly a year ago.  Judges who go out of their way to suppress witnesses or allow other witnesses to be questioned on issues not pertinent to a trial.  Judges or prosecutors who are compromised because they or their families are too close to an issue who should step aside and recuse themselves so as not to put extra weight on the scales of justice.  An Attorney General who does not enforce the law of protecting the border should be removed from office… 

woman in gold dress holding sword figurine
Photo by Tingey Injury Law Firm / Unsplash Lady Justice should be blind with justice for all, regardless of who they are…As of lately, not.

     Speaking of the border, drugs freely come across the border, making the drug problem even worse.  Drugs come from around the world and are delivered to communities across the country.  We need no more drugs introduced into this country.  A secure border would contribute to managing the drug epidemic…

     Homelessness with people living on the streets, sidewalks, parks or other public areas is yet another problem stressing our nation.  The Supreme Court ruled on this issue brought up by an Oregon Community, Grants Pass, in finding that local governments have the ability to remove outdoor homeless encampments.  This will make it easier for communities to fine, ticket or arrest people living unsheltered.  Most communities have shelters/housing programs to help individuals get the care they need to treat problems that contribute to their homelessness and in turn, prevents them from being game-fully employed. To give people needles, drugs and other harmful items, does no help to these individuals.  To care compassionately and help them with treatment for their  problems and training to gain employment is the most humane way to help people.  A person with a means to support themself gives them a feeling of self reliance leading to a feeling of self worth.  Let’s hope that communities will take control of this problem now that the Supreme Court of the land has spoken…

person holding USA Flag
Photo by Isabella Fischer / Unsplash

     Continuing on, a Free Press that informs citizens of fair and unbiased news is imperative to give them the information, leaving the population to make up their mind on issues.  A media that neglects to report facts, misrepresents individuals or information or slants stories one way or another is wrong.  A media that hides information to interfere in an election is down right criminal.  Look at the lack of legitimizing Hunter Biden’s laptop and the incriminating information on it.  In fact, the computer shop owner who turned the laptop had the tables turned on him and he had to defend himself when he thought he was doing the right thing.  In some cases, under reporting, neglecting to report the facts keeps pertinent information from voters.  Just this week, when the Supreme Court released it’s decision on Presidential Immunity, stating that “We conclude that under our Constitutional structure of separate powers, the nature of Presidential power requires that a former President have some immunity from criminal prosecution for official acts, during his tenure in office.  Yet, the President is not above the law,”  Justice John Roberts wrote. Three Justices, Kagan, Sotomayer and Brown-Jackson, countered, neglecting to see this portion of the ruling that DOES NOT give a President absolute power above the law.  Many media personalities neglected to report the ruling correctly, possibly not reading the complete ruling and misleading viewers of the actual text.  With such malpractice in the field of journalism, viewers are severely uninformed on the issues and must do their own investigating looking for unbiased resources to gain their information of the facts.  Whether the media is doling ‘Clean Up On Aisle 5’ for a poor performing administration/department/politician, doing their part to toot their favorite political party’s horn or they thing they know best who should run this country/who should be in power ALL ARE WRONG.  The American people are smart enough to make their own decisions, they don’t need a media deciding what news we need to hear.  We can handle the truth and should be GIVEN THE TRUTH.

time lapse photography of sparkler and U.S.A flag let
Photo by Stephanie McCabe / Unsplash

     On this Fourth of July in the year two-thousand twenty-four, our country is in trouble.  We’ve seen trouble before.  As a new country, ridden with debt from a Revolutionary War, a country divided by slavery and civil rights, torn apart by a Civil War, the assignation of two Presidents a First World War of global conflict, an economic Great Depression that crashed our banking system and ruined families financially-but not their spirit, a Second World War over evil dictators, notably, Adolf Hitler (as well as Mussolini, Hirohito and Stalin) which began with the Nazi invasion into Poland and eventually led to the murder of six million Jews.  Then there was the Vietnam War, unsupported by some, with veteran coming back home to a cold welcome and again a country divided.  We have seen more evil dictators and terrorists around the world reeking more evil and danger for Americans and other global citizens.  We have seen terror on our own soil with thousands killed on September eleventh two thousand one.  American are tough and resilient.  We come from a legacy of adventure and our ancestors survived hardship.  It’s in our genetic make-up to face challenges and problems head on.  Think back to how our young soldiers some just teenagers scaled the cliffs of Normandy and stormed Omaha Beach on June 6, 1944, D-Day, when the Americans, along with the other Allied Forces took on evil. 

We’ve seen Presidential administrations make mistakes, promises they couldn’t keep, poor behavior, criminal acts all from both Democrats and Republicans.  These issues are not new to the United States, as human nature is human nature. Power can and does corrupt people and history does repeat itself.  Rome did itself in, the British Crown became so corrupt and oppressive that the Pilgrims, Puritans and common folk felt that it was worth the risk to board ships for a far away land they did not know, for a better life for themselves and their children.  It was an experiment that led to an idea communicated in a  Puritan Sermon, written and spoken by John Winthrop (later recounted by Ronald Regan), aboard the ship, “Arbella”titled, A Model of Christian Charity.  That famous sermon, recited in 1630-a decade after the first Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock, “We shall be seen as a city upon a hill.”  Our country was sought out by those who loved freedom and felt that it was a God given right.  Some called it American Exceptionalism.  No matter what you call it, it sets this great country of ours apart.  Freedom for all, regardless of who you are or where you were born.  Freedom of a class system and freedom of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness directly from God and a country under God, with liberty and justice for all. 

A Vietnam Veteran, Warren, told me as we conversed in the produce section at the grocery store yesterday, as we talked about out the problems our country faces-paraphrasing here-“problems are opportunities,” he said. I couldn’t agree more with Warren. The problems are not red or blue, Republican or Democrat, they affect us all.  We need to acknowledge the problem, take responsibility, face it head on and, like Warren said, look at the opportunity at hand to make things better. these problems are all fixable. I didn’t say it would be easy, but they can be solved with the right leadership, the right attitude and team work. So maybe it’s not “Houston, we’ve had a problem’ but rather, “Houston, we have an opportunity here… to make this country great once again.” We’re all on the same team here.  Let’s get going and see how great we can make it!  Our founders are counting on us to carry the torch.  Happy Fourth of July!

Author, Mary Yana Burau