Backstage at the “Man in the Moon”

Posted by on Jul 9, 2013 in Lisa's Personal Insights, National News, Utah State Headlines | 2 comments

A week prior to the “Man in the Moon” event, my name was forwarded to Kristina Ribali, Social Media Director for FreedomWorks. It was because of my local blogging about National and Utah politics, that she invited me to be backstage at the “Free the People” Speaker Series, to blog, tweet, facebook, what I saw. I didn’t know what to expect, I had never been given such an opportunity to an event as big as this was. But I gladly accepted. Kristina also invited me to be part of the pre-show to “Free the People,” which was to air over the internet. Again I didn’t know what to expect, I’d never been interviewed before! I was given permission as well, to bring my video camera, to take pictures and talk with anyone. I had complete access! Wow! I was excited!

Glenn Beck and Kristina Ribali with bloggers from around the country prior to Freedom Works "Free the People" event July 5, 2013

Glenn Beck and Kristina Ribali with bloggers from around the country prior to Freedom Works “Free the People” event July 5, 2013

Arriving with a friend of mine, we were ushered through the gates, to the backrooms where we would set up. I was introduced to other bloggers as they came in, fully expecting to see other known bloggers in Utah. I was the only one. The diversity of bloggers there was great! Brenden Loy, a self proclaimed Left centrist was there, as was Michelle Ray who was our Libertarian. I found them to be really good people and it was a privilege to meet them!

We set up our equipment and set out! I tried to stay out of everyone’s way as they were planning for the show. Speakers were showing up. So was the wind and rain! The Man in the Moon had set backs and the crew was concerned with the props. The fact that my hair went completely uncurled and started to frizz was such a minor thing I didn’t dare ask if someone had a curling iron! So alas my 2 minutes off camera time was met with wind blown hair! A great first impression! You can see my portion of the pre-show below.

It was the atmosphere and the people that mattered though. It was calm, orderly, genuine! I’m sure nerves were being rattled just a bit, but I never saw it. These people were professional and they (and decidedly me) wouldn’t panic unless we had to. But how could panic ensue, with such faith promoting people? It couldn’t, nor did it. The only set back that I knew of was that the pre-show was stopped because the winds were just too much and the connection to the internet was at a minimal. But it was OK!

Opening the door to where I was set up, I came face to face with Glenn Beck, already speaking with the rest of the bloggers. I tried to come in as causal as possible! Mr. Beck has a gravitational pull about him. Like him or not, his presence commands respect. He was kind and soft spoken like he gets at times when he talks about topic he cares about. He was gracious with his time, as short as it was, and was genuinely interested in our conversation. He appreciated our efforts to be involved at the grassroots level, and asked to keep doing it, as we could make a difference together. He took a few pictures with us and then left to finish preparing for the Speaker’s series.

Glenn Beck - July 5, 2013

Glenn Beck – July 5, 2013

At that point the “Free the People” event had started. Kristina was incredible, asking various speakers to come and interview with us. She was going non-stop! One by one, as time permitted she brought them back to our room. In walked Saratoga Springs Mayor, Mia Love, who is running for Utah’s 4th Congressional District. Following her was Freedom Works’ Deneen Borelli, and then Arizona Congressman David Schweikert, ending with Utah Senator Mike Lee. (All of those interviews can be seen in up coming posts)

The night went extremely fast with never a dull moment. As Glenn Beck was on stage, I was backstage right behind the producers. Watching Glenn on the screen I heard him hinting to the audience of the Man in the Moon2, now in production for next year. The cues were right on, the choir and Glenn’s story was in sync. Not a sound could be heard from the audience, and if I’m not mistaken the light rain had stopped. It was an amazing moment. I looked around me and I was standing next to Rafael Cruz, Senator Ted Cruz’s father, and Matt Kibbe, President of Freedom Works, was on the other side. Even in the back we could feel the power behind the story. The host of the evening, (forgive me as I don’t remember her name) leaned over to me and she said, “you could hear a pin drop, its so quiet.” I replied, “That’s what happens when the Spirit moves.”

After the show I was again offered to come backstage and see the goings on before the “Man in the Moon” production. I was excited for the chance to come yet again.

Double rainbow over "Man in the Moon" - July 6, 2013

Double rainbow over “Man in the Moon” – July 6, 2013

The next evening at the Man in the Moon, I had ran through torrential rain. There goes my done up hair again. Oh C’est la vie! That’s life! Umbrellas weren’t allowed in the USANA Amphitheater, and I wasn’t the only one getting soaked. At least this time I wasn’t going on camera. But I did take pictures! I was able to meet Raj Nair, host of Liberty Treehouse. I saw Buck Sexton but didn’t approach him as he was speaking on the Blaze Radio. Talking about the crisis in Egypt I imagined. On stage I was able to meet David Barton of and thank him for his books that taught historical truth!

And once again I met Glenn Beck. He was pacing it seemed a little nervous about the show being partly shut down to the projectors potentially being damaged by the rain. $600,000 and he’d have to pay for each one that was ruined because of water damage. Earlier a prayer, lead by David Barton, was given with specific request to let the rains pass by the amphitheater. It was amazing. Within 40-45 minutes the skies cleared with double rainbows behind the stage. Glenn was still nervous though, the crew even more so. What was the plan? I knew I had a maybe a minute, but I went up to him and wished him luck! He placed his hand on my arm and said in his quiet voice “Thank you.” Quickly he noticed that my jean jacket was still soaked from the rain. I said it was ok, that I would dry, and that everything would be ok. He smiled, asked where my family was sitting, I pointed off stage left to the grass. Again, he was genuine and as much as I wanted to sit down and have a conversation with him, I thanked him for the privilege to be backstage and left to be with my family.IMG_1555_20130706_215721

The Man in the Moon shared the story of the Gospel. Love one another, be kind to each other, serve and lift each other up. We are writers of our own stories and we decide if our characters are heroic or tyrannical. I was shown that by Glenn Beck and his “Man in the Moon.” I am so grateful to have been given such extraordinary memories. Thank you, Kristina Ribali, and a deep thank you to Glenn Beck for providing the opportunity.

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Virtual Unintended Consequences

Posted by on Jun 11, 2013 in Family, Lisa's Personal Insights, National News | 1 comment

For the first time in history, a generation’s thoughts, deeds, likes and dislikes, habits, triumphs and mistakes, and their relationships will all be documented from the minute they are born until the moment they die. The virtual world has become the mecca for corporations and governments to know everything about us.
However, it will be those children five years and younger who will be the most affected. The data that will be collected on these babies will follow, and in some cases, haunt them forever. This data that will be collected will be used against them in the future, or could help save them. That will depend on who is in charge of this data and who can access it.

nsa_eye1For the first time, this obsession with technology and innovation will reach a peak of intrusiveness, the likes of which our grandparents have never seen and have always been afraid of.

And yet we freely up load our babies’ pictures, document events, places, and people for everyone to see. Facebook, iTunes, Amazon, YouTube, Google, and all other mass media outlets out there collect data which we freely give. Millions, if not billions of dollars are in virtual circulation just because you are typing, coping, uploading away. We have been a gold mine, and now our children and the generation following them will be even more so.

But that is not the greatest tragedy.

In an article that I read today, it was pointed out that our teens lives, as they get virtually documented will never be erased, including their mistakes.

Think of your past. Think of past relationships, experiments, your rebelling years. If your employers or current family members knew the kind of person you were when you were a teen, would you feel confident that all would be well going forward? Would past thoughts that were carelessly written as a teen be regrettable as an adult?

Are we ready to allow those types of consequences of having our teens be adults in an adult virtual world of responsibility? Can we count on the future relationships that our children will have, to be merciful and forgiving? Perhaps that would be if the nature of God and love is still an influence.
Imagine for a moment a future where your child doesn’t have a job interview, because companies have had access to social media records, as well as scholastic and medical records. There would never need to be an ‘in person’ interview.

Or, another scenario would be a prospective relationship. A father doesn’t like ateen-girls-computer-surprised new boy in his daughter’s life and he calls up the government for access to the boy’s history. (I can see all the current dads out there smiling, ‘hey, not a bad idea.’) What if that boy were you, and you had been convicted of a crime, only you were set up. Or, you had paid your debt to society, and you were turning your life around. Your confession of your past would no longer be on your terms, but it would be on the governments’ terms.
Is this what we want for our children’s future?

I would ask that you think twice of allowing your teen to be a part of our virtual world until they are old enough to understand the unintended consequences that may arise at any time. And that they are responsible to accept those consequences.

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Marine General Maddis’ viral 2003 email on importance of reading circles again

Posted by on May 10, 2013 in Lisa's Personal Insights, National News, U.S History | 0 comments

The virtual timing of the re-circulating of Marine Gen. James “Mad Dog” Mattis’ November 2003 letter about reading, is a blessing. With the Common Core requiring more emphasis on information texts, the lack of understanding behind those documents is astounding.

Students who are only taught from only documents and manuals, will not know the why, the passion, behind those texts. That lack of information will severely hinder the ability to process, individually, for themselves how to reasonably solve a problem, or create anew.

Haman nature does not change and because of that history is destined to repeat. The only way to know how to solve problems of the future is to learn from the past. Passion, feelings, emotions are what drives men to achieve victory and over come battles and wars. We mustn’t lose sight of what our forefathers went through and the legacies they left behind, or we will be completely blind with the knowledge we could have seen the future.

General James "Mad Dog" Mattis Years of Service 1972-2013

General James “Mad Dog” Mattis
Years of Service 1972-2013

General Mattis has since retired, leaving his post as “head of Central Command, which oversaw wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and was responsible for a region that includes Syria, Iran, Yemen.”

Here is his letter:

“Message 1: from General James Mattis, on the matter of professional reading, 20 November
“….The problem with being too busy to read is that you learn by experience (or by your men’s
experience), i.e. the hard way. By reading, you learn through others’ experiences, generally a
better way to do business, especially in our line of work where the consequences of
incompetence are so final for young men.

“Thanks to my reading, I have never been caught flat-footed by any situation, never at a loss for
how any problem has been addressed (successfully or unsuccessfully) before. It doesn’t give
me all the answers, but it lights what is often a dark path ahead.

“With TF 58, I had w/ me Slim’s book, books about the Russian and British experiences in AFG,
and a couple others. Going into Iraq, “The Siege” (about the Brits’ defeat at Al Kut in WW I) was
req’d reading for field grade officers. I also had Slim’s book; reviewed T.E. Lawrence’s “Seven
Pillars of Wisdom”; a good book about the life of Gertrude Bell (the Brit archaeologist who
virtually founded the modern Iraq state in the aftermath of WW I and the fall of the Ottoman
empire); and “From Beirut to Jerusalem”. I also went deeply into Liddell Hart’s book on
Sherman, and Fuller’s book on Alexander the Great got a lot of my attention (although I never
imagined that my HQ would end up only 500 meters from where he lay in state in Babylon).

“Ultimately, a real understanding of history means that we face NOTHING new under the sun.
For all the “4th Generation of War” intellectuals running around today saying that the nature of
war has fundamentally changed, the tactics are wholly new, etc, I must respectfully say… “Not
really”: Alex the Great would not be in the least bit perplexed by the enemy that we face right
now in Iraq, and our leaders going into this fight do their troops a disservice by not studying
(studying, vice just reading) the men who have gone before us.

“We have been fighting on this planet for 5000 years and we should take advantage of their
experience. “Winging it” and filling body bags as we sort out what works reminds us of the
moral dictates and the cost of incompetence in our profession. As commanders and staff
officers, we are coaches and sentries for our units: how can we coach anything if we don’t
know a hell of a lot more than just the TTPs? What happens when you’re on a dynamic
battlefield and things are changing faster than higher HQ can stay abreast? Do you not
adapt because you cannot conceptualize faster than the enemy’s adaptation? (Darwin has
a pretty good theory about the outcome for those who cannot adapt to changing
circumstance — in the information age things can change rather abruptly and at warp
speed, especially the moral high ground which our regimented thinkers cede far too quickly
in our recent fights.) And how can you be a sentinel and not have your unit caught
flat-footed if you don’t know what the warning signs are — that your unit’s preps are not
sufficient for the specifics of a tasking that you have not anticipated?

“Perhaps if you are in support functions waiting on the warfighters to spell out the specifics of
what you are to do, you can avoid the consequences of not reading. Those who must adapt to
overcoming an independent enemy’s will are not allowed that luxury.

“This is not new to the USMC approach to warfighting — Going into Kuwait 12 years ago, I
read (and reread) Rommel’s Papers (remember “Kampstaffel”?), Montgomery’s book (“Eyes
Officers”…), “Grant Takes Command” (need for commanders to get along, “commanders’
relationships” being more important than “command relationships”), and some others. As a
result, the enemy has paid when I had the opportunity to go against them, and I believe that
many of my young guys lived because I didn’t waste their lives because I didn’t have the vision
in my mind of how to destroy the enemy at least cost to our guys and to the innocents on the

“Hope this answers your question…. I will cc my ADC in the event he can add to this. He is the
only officer I know who has read more than I.

“Semper Fi, Mattis

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An Undocumented Goal: Global Citizenship

Posted by on May 3, 2013 in Agenda 21, Around the World, Education, Lisa's Personal Insights, National News, U.S History, Utah State Headlines | 0 comments

globalcitizenshipHidden deep within the Common Core State Standards is a goal to teach children that there is no such thing as a boarder defining a country. We are global citizens that accept each other, our cultures, beliefs, educational goals and economic prosperity for the benefit of the world we live in.

In the news, we have seen reports of parents finding assignments that require students to denounce rights provided by the Constitution, to step on Christian leadership, and to write essays about why Jews are evil. Teachers are being fired for being religious or conservative. Censorship is now public enemy number one against anyone or any ideology that is against this new reform of education known as Common Core.

Socialism is being heralded as the way to make things equal, so that no poverty exists. A redistribution of wealth! The phrase, “It takes a village to raise a child,” has evolved into a collective movement where children now belong to the community, or even to the world as a whole. President Obama’s own Department of Justice has declared that children do not need a mother or a father, helping to further the mentality of collective possession!

I was asked by Utah State Board of Education member Tami Pyfer “where exactly does it say in the standardsTamiPyfer that global citizenship was the goal?” I didn’t respond right away as I had several questions for her 1) Haven’t you read the standards and the resources that you send to your teachers? 2) If Utah is claiming that “-Utah Common Core Standards-” are not national standards, why does she get jumpy when I talk about the National Common Core Standards?

Also I wanted to give a her clear answer for all to read!

Let me begin with a personal story. My oldest daughter was planning out her courses out for winter semester last fall. Together we spoke with a U.S. History teacher and I asked him directly how he would be teaching this class. He told me that he would provide documents and he would engage the students in discussions about these documents. You can imagine my eyebrows going up “Oh, really?”

I asked him how the students and my child were supposed to know the history or the story of those documents? He said the students would have to do the research on their own. That was part of the standards which would required students to come to their own conclusion about the documents and history. I was polite in thanking him for his time, but was screaming inside my head, “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?” And that was the end of that class for us!

Informational texts without the story will not provide the vision that our Founders’ had of freedom! Informational texts will not tell the stories of emotional hardship, triumphs, sacrifice, service, bravery, and torture that countless individuals endured for us to have the freedom of choice, voice, and pursuit of happiness! Informational text was a goal of Karl Marx. Eliminate emotion, passion, and conviction, and there is nothing for which to fight. Words are just words.

In Education Week, a column was entitled, “Common Core: Preparing Globally Competent Citizens.” This statement says it all. “The Common Core State Standards for English language arts include a series of statements that, while not directly standards themselves, offer a portrait of the capacities of literate students who meet the Standards. One of these seven statements directly addresses the importance of college and career ready students coming ‘to understand other perspectives and cultures’.” The statement continues, “Students appreciate that the twenty-first-century classroom and workplace are settings in which people from often widely divergent cultures and who represent diverse experiences and perspectives must learn and work together. Students actively seek to understand other perspectives and cultures through reading and listening, and they are able to communicate effectively with people of varied backgrounds.”

Is that not the end goal for the government? To provide citizens who know nothing about borders, who accept everyone’s values and cultures, who accept no one culture as superior to another? There is are already fears of a collapsing dollar leading to a global currency. Education would be the means to teach the future residents of this new governance!

On another website, New Global Citizens, it states, “Teaching global competency falls in line quite seamlessly with the Common Core State Standards.” How can that statement be dismissed so casually by those in leadership? People who believe in global citizenship can see it in the writings! I can see it in the writings, why can’t leadership?

And if those two links still don’t show the intent of Common Core to lead our children away from American values and citizenship, then perhaps the International Baccalaureate official documents will persuade:

The IB prepares students to succeed in a rapidly changing world.

• More than a set of rigorous academic standards,
• Emphasizes an education for global engagement,
• Provides a Balance between the skills required to succeed in a competitive, global economy and the values that define responsible, global citizenship.

“The IB applauds the efforts of the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of
Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) to improve the quality of education across the United States through the Common Core State Standards initiative (CCSS).

“The IB shares with the U.S. Department of Education and its state agencies the important goals of developing internationally benchmarked standards and the ambition to better prepare all students for success in college and career development.”

The IB is pleased to have been selected in 2011 as one of 5 sets of standards against which the Common Core was measured by education experts to determine its success in meeting its goals.”

Make no mistake, IB standards are aligned with Common Core State Standards by design! Global citizenry and governance is the goal. American values will no longer be taught as goals for the future, but as theories of the past.

For more evidence :
National Association of Secondary School Principles

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Teachers, Your jobs are at stake!

Posted by on Mar 26, 2013 in Education, National News | 1 comment

Teachers, your jobs are at stake! I’ll tell you how in a moment.teachers

First I want to say that I know you have been under a lot of pressure having to learn about Common Core and how it will affect your teaching, your students, and your career. I know the passion that you bring to the classroom, and I’ve watched it fizzling out with frustration.. And I would like to say “Thank you!” for being the middle man between management and parents for the sake of teaching the child! As a parent, I truly thank you.

As I have studied Common Core for the last two years, I have not been able to pin point exactly “why” it has been necessary to retrain good teachers to teach a curriculum, especially since it was only “Standards” that were supposed to have changed. You and I were told that “teachers could teach what they wanted and how they wanted.” And here in America that sounds great! The freedom to explore subjects in a creative way! Until you hit that nasty wall of end-of-year testing.

With the implementation of No Child Left Behind more than a decade ago, you found that your job was suddenly on the line – based solely on testing scores! Before CC you had to teach to the test, and if those children failed, your school could be penalized, and your job would be on the line. Now with the Common Core Standards, the stakes have just been raised! The assessments will be available next year. And from what I have found, if the teacher, the principal, or a school administrator looks at the test, it will be counted as unusable and will downgrade your school to the point where it could close down for good. The tests themselves will be technology-driven, and will have compressive questions on the tests. No longer will the tests show how smart a child is, but how dumb a child is. By the 7th grade, children will be dumbed-down in math, English, language arts, science, critical thinking skills, creativity, and reading. On purpose, and not by you.

This week, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel closed down 54 schools because of failing scores. Officials in Lansing, Michigan cut art, music and physical education, to accommodate budget cuts.

I wonder if you look at the children in your classroom and ever think, “These children will determine my outcome in the near and far future?” Have you ever turned and looked at the administrators or Unions and thought, “These individuals will determine my outcome in the near and far future?” It has finally come through to me that you, as teachers, are being set up to fail, as part of the break down of the public education system. Under this new system, you are meant to fail. Your job is going to become a revolving career choice, with thousands of applicants that are ready to take your place. The noble “calling” of “teacher” – the unique individual with the gift to guide young minds to countless “aha” moments and deeper understanding of the world around them – is to be replaced with the ordinary job of education facilitator, a worker bee that serves its short time delivering the state’s curriculum, rapidly burns out, and is replaced by another worker bee. To this new system, you are expendable.

Have you heard of the term “Lean management?” Have you, as a teacher, been asked to take on additional administrative positions? Have you been overwhelmed with the continuous classes that you need to take to learn the latest technique, or learn about the newest curriculum? It has almost become monotonous with the ever-revolving door of changing ideas about how, who and what to teach! And that is what I mean by your being set up to fail. Combine that with scores, grades, or rankings of your schools, as well as the lowering of your pay scale. It is all by design. Here are some of the details, from an article entitled “Lean production – what’s really hurting public education” :

“The primary goal of forced rankings is, however, to shrink the workforce and see how far remaining workers can be stretched before they crack. Emiliani advises managers to “develop an action plan” for the “bottom ten percent” of workers, and if there’s no measurable improvement in performance, “the associate would be subject to involuntary separation.” For the best of the workers—more work! As Bill Gates proposed last year in the Washington Post, policymakers should “get more students in front of top teachers by identifying the top 25 percent of teachers and asking them to take on four or five more students.”

Your value as a teacher is being tested, and if you happen to survive past the average one year experience of teaching, you will certainly notice the increase in students in your classroom the next year. I highly, highly recommend this article as it goes into much more detail than I ever could.

This is about collapsing the system, top down, inside out, and teachers are just the worker bees to do it! All in the name of helping children, too busy to fully investigate, while teaching from the provided resources that devalue the individual. Meanwhile the children are the victims and will end up being the working slaves of corporations and the government.

Lois Weiner, Professor in the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education at New Jersey City University

Lois Weiner, Professor in the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education at New Jersey City University

Professor Lois Weiner from New Jersey City University, in New York, spoke passionately about her concerns for teachers in conjunction with the Race To The Top program, in the video below. Though I disagree with her politics, I definitely stand with her concerns for how teachers are being set up and used. More and more teachers that I have come across are confused and scared about how the futures of their careers are being tied to the children they teach. They need to know about how Common Core will be used against them, and they will need support to fight it, if we are to save the noble profession of “teacher” from being downgraded to “facilitator of corporatist education”.

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Senator Mike Lee’s push to infringe gun control laws

Posted by on Mar 26, 2013 in 2nd Amendment, National News, Utah State Headlines | 0 comments

Last Friday, Senator Mike Lee pushed to infringe upon those seeking gun control laws in the Senate. In an amendment to the Senate’s first budget proposal in 4 years, calls for a require super majority vote with any future bills that concern the 2nd Amendment. “It also requires that additional consideration should be given before passing legislation that alters one of our fundamental constitutional rights.

The legislation would have applied to the following:

Bans on so called “assault weapons”
Bans on high capacity magazines
Universal background checks that can only be enforced by a national registry
Establishment of a registry to track firearm purchases
Imposing a de facto ban on gun sales to veterans
This point of order could be waived by a 2/3 majority of the Senate.

In a released statement, Senator Lee made it quite clear that he is still standing with the peoples’ rights to bear arms and the Constitution as it stands.

“Americans are appalled by criminal acts of mass violence,” Sen. Lee said. “However, Americans also recognize that there are limits to the problems that can be solved with new legislation. The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution protects citizens’ rights to defend their own life, the lives of their loved ones, and the lives of the most vulnerable. This right speaks to history’s lesson that government cannot be in all places at all times, and history’s warning that we would not like to live under a government that tried. Government registration of firearms presents a threat to our 2nd Amendment rights. Such a registry would be no less offensive than one monitoring how individual citizens exercise their rights to free speech, association, religion, or any other constitutional right.”

Unfortunately, the following morning, the Amendment was voted down. But don’t assume that has stopped Senator Lee in his fight for Americans 2nd Amendment rights. In the video below Senator Lee answered a caller’s question about what he (Lee), was doing to “block efforts to curtail 2nd Amendment rights?”

Yesterday, media reports spread about a another filibuster that has been planned by Senators’ Lee, Ted Cruz, and Rand Paul, on Senator Harry Reid’s gun control bill that asks for more extensive bank ground checks, interstate gun trafficking, and could limit magazine capacities.

In a letter sent to Reid’s office from the 3 Conservative Senators stated ” We will oppose the motion to proceed to any legislation that will serve as a vehicle for any additional gun restrictions”

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Today, the White House shot back to the Senators, to not get in the way, warning them that it would be unfortunate to send that type of message to the victims who have been affected by gun violence.

Apparently the White House and Harry Reid, haven’t received the message that “infringement” on the American citizen’s right to bare arms is not to be crossed. Americans have sent that message loud and clear, with their rights to purchase such tools of freedom.

I strongly support Senators’ Lee, Cruz and Paul as they continue to stand against a bully system that would love to destroy the Constitution!

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