Tag: Legislation

Congressional Compromise: The Partisan Stalemate Isn’t True

By Juan Ayala | United States

Most Would Say Congress Doesn’t Work

It would be very easy to say that Congress doesn’t work-sometimes it truly doesn’t. Moreover, it would be easy to infer that members of Congress also don’t work and are tainted with special interests; that’s the easy and ignorant way to look at it. To that effect, when was the last time you saw a story in the news that talked about bipartisan compromise, members working together, and a genuine sense of honesty amongst those in elected office? The answer most would say is very rare. Then, there are those such as myself that are quite deep within domestic politics. I am here to tell you that most members of Congress are trying to do the best they can.

Continue reading “Congressional Compromise: The Partisan Stalemate Isn’t True”

Advertisements

Republican States are Caving on Marijuana Legalization

By Dane Larsen | @therealdanelars

During the 2018 election season, the ballot initiative was taken by the people of Missouri, Michigan, and Utah that will lead to some degree of marijuana legalization. The previously thought absurdity of a normalized marijuana community and/or industry seems to be fading away as the years go by.

The issue caused uproar across the United States even for strictly medical authorization in select states. Progressive states on the west coast have gone so far to codify cannabis for recreational use, however the stigma has been set up for long enough to the point where it was unsure whether or not particularly socially conservative states of the south and fly-over country would ever cross the threshold to permit use of marijuana in any practice.

Recently, dubbed the “green wave”, a major shift in the policy of red states, that uphold traditional culture on a pedestal has taken place, resulting in the progression of culture regarding minor issues on the national scale, marijuana legalization being one. For example, this past Wednesday, June the 9th, congressmen from both West Virginia and Kentucky introduced similar proposals, both calling on fellow lawmakers to allow the people of their respective states to retain the freedom of body autonomy. With the legalization of marijuana to any degree, the citizens gain the choice of what to do what they want to do to their own body.

West Virginia

State Senator Richard Ojeda (D) representing the 7th district of West Virginia, submitted a bill to permit adults aged 21 and over to grow, consume, or possess any amount of marijuana for medical or recreational users alike. SB143 outlines a seemingly radical idea to the conservative majority of West Virginia population, calling on Governor Jim Justice to (R), saying in the annual State of the State Address this past week that he is “adamantly, etched in stone, adamantly against recreational marijuana”.

With this no-nonsense policy of the state executive branch, the bill is not expected to pass through Congress in 2019, but the outcry of people from the general public has made major shifts in the way other states and their very own government look at the population of West Virginia. Although they were the only state to declare independence from the Confederate States of America in the Civil War, it is recognized as a Southern state in its culture and political appearance. With the introduction of this bill, discourse on the topic of marijuana is pushed to the forefront of congressional discussion in just about the most hard-right, red-run state in the USA, with 68.8% of who voted for Trump in 2016.

Kentucky

More or less in the same situation as West Virginia when it comes to Southern perception, Kentucky has taken a different approach to the cannabis issue, taking small steps to legalize it, instead of going full-out in one bill as West Virginia is attempting. Senator Dan Seum (D) is teaming up with Jason Nemes (R) and Diane St Onge (R) on HB136 that would allow doctors, at their own discretion, to prescribe medical marijuana to patients they see the best fit for the products. Governor Matt Bevin has been on record saying that he will sign off on a medical marijuana bill if it is regulated properly, especially for an industry with such a negative stigma.

The sponsors of the bill state that with the passing, the state could provide alternative can to combat side effects for conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, Crohn’s disease, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The bill does not list any conditions but leaves that up to doctors to decide when to recommend it. “We’re trying to address the 40,000 to 60,000 Kentuckians who are not having symptoms addressed by conventional medicines,” St. Onge stated on Thursday, revealing a less radical approach to the issue, one that can speak to the conservative state easier.

The Green Wave

Other states have formulated plans on taking progressive steps towards varying levels of marijuana legalization, however, no solid legislation has been written in said states.

Missouri has already gained approval from the legislative committees needed, as they legalized medical marijuana in the past 2018 midterms as a ballot initiative. Representative Brandon Ellington (D) plans to go farther with this issue, with bills in the works to work towards decriminalization and eventually legalization. Texas legislators plan to propose a constitutional amendment to legalize all forms of cannabis; while New Jersey plans to do the same, gaining most of its support not from the House Representatives and Senators, but rather Governor Phil Murphy (D). Virginia could see the forward movement as well, with Governor Ralph Northam (D) on record backing in favor of progressive marijuana policies, stating that decriminalization could “ease overcrowding in our jails and prisons, and free up our law enforcement and court resources for offenses that are a true threat to public safety.”


71 Republic is the Third Voice in media. We pride ourselves on distinctively independent journalism and editorials. Every dollar you give helps us grow our mission of providing reliable coverage. Please consider donating to our Patreon, which you can find here. Thank you very much for your support!

Featured Image Source

California Leftists Want To Control How You Eat

Indri Schaelicke | United States

In an effort to promote the local restaurant industry, the city of San Francisco, California is considering adopting a new law that prohibits employees of large tech companies from eating in cafeterias on their campus. The proposed law will achieve this by banning companies from maintaining on-site cafeterias, forcing employees to bring their own food from home or leave the corporate campus to get lunch. Proponents say that enacting this legislation will help the restaurants in the area, which have lost business as companies build on-site cafeterias, to recover and thrive again.

While this move seeks to help small businesses and restaurant workers, it may, in fact, hurt them. Jobs in catering and cafeteria service tend to pay more than those in traditional restaurant settings. Ending jobs in this industry could limit upward mobility in the world of entry-level restaurant jobs.

Companies first started building cafeterias in their buildings in an effort to boost worker productivity. If employees can cut down their lunch break, simply by eliminating a long round trip drive to lunch, they can spend more time working and networking, something that all companies seek to promote. If the proposed legislation passes, workers will be made to take time away from their work habitat which could stunt social enterprise.

Driving off campus decreases the time workers have to be productive and imposes extra costs. Employees will have to spend money on gas and overpriced restaurant food, at a time when the cost of living is already so high. The high volume of employees leaving work to go to lunch will no doubt worsen existing traffic issues. Twitter’s location alone has over 2000 employees, and although the ban only impacts future workplaces being built, imagine the amount of congestion if 2000 employees all descended upon the city at the same time to eat lunch. Forcing people to leave work and eat is not only immoral but will worsen existing traffic.

The fact that the ban only applies to the building of workplaces in the future means that companies will have a hard time starting up or even expanding in Silicon Valley. Businesses will not be able to build new workplaces that have cafeterias on site, which is a huge blow to businesses. Companies offer free on-site lunch as a perk to potential employees, and if they cannot offer this, they cannot attract workers. It is in this way that this ban limits future growth.

The success the proposal has had thus far is concerning as it is a classic example of one group trying to take the rights of the other. Restaurants are trying to take away the right of private property owners, in this case, tech companies, from engaging in whatever business practice they choose to on their own property. It is no business of the state to determine what someone can do on their own property, so long as it does not cause harm to their life, liberty or property. This proposed ban is a direct attack on the principles of private property rights and should not be adopted.

This is just another example of the strangulation that California legislatures have placed on the open market. This past week, Santa Barbara passed a law that will outlaw plastic straws. Along the West Coast of California, the grip of government is becoming ever tighter. Great effort must be made to save whatever shred of liberty is left if totalitarianism is to be avoided. Knowing California’s disdain for liberty and lack of respect for individual rights, it is unlikely that much will be done to stop it.


Featured Image Source

The Double Edged Sword of Feminism

By Addie Mae Villas | USA

Feminism, as defined by Merriam-Webster, is 1: the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes and 2: organized activity on behalf of women’s rights and interests. Feminism was Merriam-Webster’s Word of the year due to the number of searches as well as the increase in feminist actions, but often times, modern-day feminists only organize on behalf of the people who side with them. In a poll done by the Washington Post, 43% of women consider themselves feminists while 30% do not consider themselves to be feminists at all. Due to the actions of modern feminists, there’s no doubt that so many women turn from the word.

Over the span of the past year, there have been numerous times that the so-called champions of equality have torn down their own just because they have a different opinion. Chelsea Handler, a proclaimed feminist, has always been quick to tear down those she disagrees with by making attacks against their looks. Sure, one may not agree with the stances of someone, but in no way is it in anyone’s interest to degrade another person. Even with that, feminists of the left often forget about all the accomplishments of women that are being made across the aisle. Nancy Pelosi interrupted a White House dinner with the statement “Does anybody listen to women when they speak around here?” and when news of that broke, so many applauded the bold statement. Yet, they seem to conveniently forget that Nikki Haley is the US Ambassador to the United Nations, Sarah Huckabee Sanders is one of the three female White House Press Secretaries in history, Kellyanne Conway is the first female to successfully manage a US presidential campaign, and Hope Hicks is currently serving as the White House Communications Director. With so many strong women making their mark in history, it’s time that feminists put down their feud with the right and acknowledge the strides being made.

Feminists in America are so adamantly fighting for equality in the workplace, stating that men are paid more than their female counterparts. Although the wage gap has been proven wrong, and legislation has been put in place to ensure equal pay, they still insist that more needs to be done. Since equality is already created, what more do they want? Living in the United States, women see liberties that are not prevalent elsewhere. But the hypocrisy of the leftist feminists is that they never fight for equal opportunity or the best interests of the ones that truly need feminism. Looking at what’s happening in Tehran, women all over are fighting the government for their freedoms. The events in Iran should be cheered from women all over, especially the feminists of America. But, what makes the whole situation worse is that women in America play the victim card of being a woman as a cop-out when situations are not ideal to their circumstances.

My final qualm with modern day feminism is the image that comes along with it. As stated before, the feminists of today have given themselves an image of degrading women and acting out. With the Women’s March, we saw around four million people march in D.C. to advocate for women’s rights. But, of course, the feminists were not fully inclusive. They disregarded a pro-life group that was also feminist. Of course in the modern day version of feminism, one must completely comply with the leftist agenda. Besides the fact that by banning the group they embraced the very hypocrisy they claim to fight, forgetting that the group simply wanted their own form of equality. Personally, I believe the Women’s March was a wasted opportunity. They gave a negative connotation to the feminist movement with their explicit hats and toxic masculinity mantra. They also missed entirely the mark as to why the march was occurring. By creating a platform that strictly followed the agenda of modern day liberalism, organizers made it increasingly difficult for women across the aisle to participate, despite fully believing in equality.

When addressing the problem of modern-day feminism it comes down to being a victim, or moving past the identity politics and being more than one’s gender. Stephen Covey once said “I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.” By not allowing things such as gender or race to get in the way of success, real progress would be made.

Germany Cracks Down on Free Speech

By James Sweet III | GERMANY

In Germany, hate speech, fake news, and illegal material must now be removed by social media sites within 24 hours of being reported. Passed in June, the Netzwerkdurchsetzungsgesetz law gave social media outlets until the end of 2017 to prepare for the enforcement of the new laws.

Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube were the main targets of the law, but any social media outlet with more than 2 million users will also be affected, potentially targeting sites like Reddit. If the reported material is not removed within 24 hours, the site with the “obviously illegal” content could face a fine of up to 50 million Euros.

In the situation of a more complex case, outlets could have a week to remove the content. Regardless, this is a scary step towards censorship by the German government. Because it is subjective to say that something is hateful, the German government can cherry pick on what they like and don’t like, stating it is hateful. The same logic applies to say that something is fake, although there can be more of an objective truth behind calling something fake. With news, however, it can be noted that some news is labeled as fake merely because a group of individuals disagree with it.

Free speech is not guaranteed on social media, due to the fact that it is a private corporation and there is a set of terms you must agree to. However, with the German government intervening with the way the corporations deal with content, it no longer matters what the site’s terms state about the now illegal content. Is this the beginning of censorship of unpopular opinions, or merely the government doing something to protect the people?