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How to nip the insanity of the Left in the bud

The Democrats have pushed too far. The Democrat National Committee issued a press release condemning President Trump’s plans this weekend to spend the Fourth of July watching fireworks at Mount Rushmore as a racist action. That party condemned Mount Rushmore as being built on native tribal lands despite the fact that it has been a revered American landmark after Gutzon Borglum’s work was finished in 1941 – before these now “enlightened” Democrats were born.

It is time for the American people to repudiate such utter political radicalism by voting against every Democrat running for office. By defeating officials like Josh Harder you’ll be sending a message to his party needs to stop the insanity.

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Some Josh Harder supporters have shown they will go to any lengths to character assassinate any Republican opposing their boy.

Let me inform you what happened last week since 99.9 percent don’t watch or attend city council meetings.

In a coordinated campaign effort on Monday, June 22 the Democrats tried to shame the mayors of both cities for being Republicans and endorsing Congressional candidate Ted Howze. (Liberals talk a good game about how horrible it is to shame people but then do it viciously in a public setting).

Reading from a prepared script, Renee Zumstein Gaskill falsely charged that Howze has “made a series of comments demeaning blacks, Latinos and other minority groups of social media for all to see.” Not true.

She asked Vierra to renounce his endorsement or state why he continued to support – in her words – “a racist” candidate for Congress. I was hoping she’d give us any evidence that Howze is anything but the loving Christian man I believe him to be. But also I doubt that Renee ever demanded to know why Harder voted for impeachment proceedings on Trump over what was proven to be a made-up Russian collusion narrative after independent counsel by Robert Mueller’s exhaustive research costing $32 million.

It was a political theater not based in truth.

In the next seconds along comes another Harder woman, a very tired sounding June Mills, who suggested “this is a serious situation” and “I didn’t want it to come to this.” (I bet she didn’t.) She faulted Howze for being “loud, overbearing and insulted” (she meant to say insulting) at a candidate’s forum in January and making “incorrect and damaging statements” about Harder. What a shock to hear one side accuse the other side of things during a political campaign.

Vierra shut Mills down – as he rightfully should have – because her grievance was against the mayor’s personal opinion and had nothing to do with City Council or city business. It would be kind of like me going to a Harder supporter’s workplace and ask management to hear my grievance about their employee’s support of the congressman, of whom I do not support.

Mills continued, though, saying Howze doesn’t represent the people we should “hope to be.” And silly me, I thought elections were for the people to decide, not one June Mills.

Think about how the left operates. If they don’t think you should decide for yourself that you want to drink sodas – sugared or not – they want to limit the size of your cup.  If they don’t like who you pick for a public official, they don’t acknowledge that as your right – they instead harass you to change your mind. That, my friend, is how the left operates. 

Mayor Vierra told Mills that he was flattered that she thought his endorsement enough weight to make a difference. That was his way of saying, “I’m onto you – you only want to see Bee headlines reading, “Mayors abandon Howze by the numbers.”

They haven’t, of course, because they know it’s political chum.

City Clerk Diane Nayares-Perez then read aloud a text of an email repeating the same old unproven charge that Howze himself posted offensive things on Facebook long ago despite his renouncing of them as something someone else posted.

So think about it. Three individuals – acting from marching orders from the Democrat Party – decided to take up 12 minutes of time of city staff, city council and the public so they could air their charge that Ted Howze is a racist and that the mayor has no right supporting him.

The effort to smear Howze is coming from groups called Young Democrats of Stanislaus County and “Be the Change Turlock” run by Donna Endsley founded in 2017 to help Harder. Endsley was the one who made a scene at the Modesto Bee sponsored debate booing and cussing the Republicans to the point that others asked her to be civil. I’m told that she was incapable of being nice and flipped off the audience members.

Do I think people make all kinds of false allegations about their chosen candidate’s opponent? Absolutely. Do I think Ted Howze is a racist? Absolutely not. Do I think Josh Harder taking a knee at a Black Lives Matter protest show he is pandering to the left? Probably. Do I think his Democrats like to smear their opponents with reckless accusations? Without a doubt.

Make no mistake, Ted Howze is no racist despite what the dwindling Modesto Bee and Democrats would have you believe. Howze is a large animal veterinarian who has devoted time to coaching teams in disadvantaged communities long before Josh Harder decided to move over the hill and grab an address to run for Congress. 

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I had a nice woman call me last week who was livid after hearing how Turlock Police escorted a family with children out of the Walmart there because they weren’t wearing masks. The incident was captured on video by another Walmart shopper. She wanted to know if I was going to write about it. I told her I was mentioning it in one of my stories but noted it occurred in another town.

I could tell she was an older woman and a conservative. She proceeded to tell me that she loved my column and said lots of others she knows appreciates what I have to write every week. That’s when I told her that equally people hate me as well.

Later in the day the Turlock Journal editor said I was divisive in my column. If that’s the case, I don’t think that’s a bad thing. I don’t saddle up with the politically correct and I don’t often go with convention wisdom. I do think a lot of people are being deceived by the false narrative of my very own profession at the national level. Reporters like Frank Acosta are deceptive when they ask “is it true you don’t beat your wife? Questions and combatively bait and harass White House press secretaries. I think it the lowest common denominator form of reporting.

It’s okay to be divisive if truth is what you seek. Even Jesus himself knew his words would divide people in some serious ways. But that did not keep him from speaking truth, you see, because Jesus was incapable of representing anything other than truth. I’m not comparing myself to Jesus but he certainly did not shy away with being divisive. The truth is what matters. 

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State Attorney General Xavier Becerra released a video last week urging Californians to stand united against hate and report suspected hate crimes to their local law enforcement agency.

Got it, Xavier, will do. In my world I haven’t seen any racism or hate crimes. Well, except for the recent Ceres protest inspired by Black Lives Manner in which a Latino man named Samson Gonzalez claimed that “…the bad, by far, outweighs the good, not only in the (police) force but in white individuals too.” But I’m guessing that’s not the type of hate speech you were hoping to hear about. As stupid and as racist as Gonzalez’s statement was, I tolerated it because he has freedom of speech.

I’ve seen stupidity at work, such as tearing down of statues and renaming towns but everyone I come into contact seems civil toward one another in my country and community. But I’ll keep out an eye for all this racism lurking behind every tree, Mr. Attorney General.

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The upcoming controversy about whether or not a person can develop his own property despite what the neighbors are doing on theirs should be an interesting one.

The folks at River Oaks Golf Course are waging a campaign against the neighboring property owner from building his own retail center. Surjit Singh bought the property sandwiched between the southern end of the driving range and Hatch Road. The site is zoned Mixed Use (MX)-2 and through the Mitchell Road Corridor Specific Plan to allows limited commercial like professional offices. Singh wants his land rezoned to Community Commercial (CC) to allow more of a wider range of commercial uses. He wants to build a little shopping center.

A knee-jerk reaction will be, oh my, they shouldn’t build anything there because so many golf balls are shot over the fence and people and cars will be peppered by golf balls. But consider: During the 2018 update of the General Plan, the City Council approved the changing of the General Plan designation from Commercial Recreational to Community Commercial. So without any changes, Singh could still build, say, offices for doctors or dentists or any other professional office. Those users would be subject to those same wayward golf balls.

If River Oaks hoped the land to remain empty so their golf balls could drop on the other side of the net, why didn’t they buy it?

In a conversation I had with golf professional Greg Silva, I asked why the golf range couldn’t be reoriented toward the north and he said it wasn’t possible because the balls would hit the golfers and cars. Well there you go. So sounds to me like River Oaks acknowledges a problem with golf balls going places they shouldn’t. Nobody on either side wants balls hitting anybody or any cars but yet apparently the nets aren’t high enough to arrest errant golf balls. (I personally saw a golf ball bounce in front of my car one day while going westbound on Hatch Road in front of the driving range).

Either way, the council is now caught in the middle. In March the Planning Commission approved the rezone in a 4-1 vote.

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I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: our public schools are not teaching generations correctly. Schools are indoctrination zones.

The morning I am writing this I mentioned to a person about my idea of doing a historical piece on Ulysses S. Grant visiting Knights Ferry from 1852 to 1854. The person recoiled that I would ever do something on a confederate general. Where’s my red pen, she gets an F-minus.

Um, Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox and defeated the confederates. He also did not approve of slavery.

I told the story later and someone else said she didn’t know which side Grant fought for.

My have a serious education problem in our country. People don’t even know their history. No wonder they’re confused about which statues they tear down next. It’s like: “Oh, statue of old white guy? Rip the motha down!” Oh, he was abolitionist? What’s that? Whoops, my bad, oh well.”

Hey any of you liberals who want to get rid of your $20 bills because Jackson is on them, or your $50 bills because Grant is on them, I’ll gladly take them from you.

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I’m convinced that politics just brings out the worst in people.

A piece of unsigned mail landed on my desk last week likely came right out of the Condit camp. The writing on the envelope looked like it was deliberately forced to disguise the writer’s true handwriting style and there was no return address.

Inside was a color photocopy of a Tom Hallinan campaign piece. Hallinan is running against Channce Condit for county supervisor this November. The campaign ad or flyer or walking piece is clearly targeted to win Latino voters, mentioning how Hallinan is a volunteer lawyer helping immigrants, a founder and vice president of the Latino Community Roundtable and helping thousands “of our children” attend college. Everything is in English and repeated in Spanish. The person who sent the piece had circled this: “Tom Hallinan raised his own Latino son and daughter.”

On the back is written (and this is verbatim): “Jeff I know you strongly support this race baiter + great candidate your supporting + conservative.”

I’m not sure what this broken sentence is supposed to convey but let’s address the term “race baiter.”

A race bater is not someone who is extolling his credentials to a target audience. Race bating, according to Wiktionary means : “The use of racially derisive language, actions, or other forms of communication in order to anger or intimidate or coerce.” Cambridge Dictionary defined the term as follows: “intentionally encouraging racism or anger about issues relating to race, often to get a political advantage.”

Thus Hallinan is not race baiting as he is not encouraging racism or anger unless you are upset that Hallinan is posturing to get the Latino voter.

Also, the letter writer does not know if I support Hallinan but I was impressed with his answers in the Chamber of Commerce candidate forum earlier this year.

But I began to think about this person who sent me this anonymous mail. Why would someone go to such great measures to hide their identity? If that’s their opinion and a solid one, what’s wrong with owning up to your charge by signing your name? Perhaps one is hiding in the shadows because it’s a hit coming directly from the opposition camp, such as I suspect?

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Folks, you realize what this tearing down of statues and renaming cities and products is really all about, don’t you? It’s really about the Left’s attempt to dismantle the greatest country on earth and reassembling it into the socialist utopia that Venezuela is. Why else would you dismiss great leaders like Washington and Jefferson? 

The Left makes this look like it’s all about correcting racial injustice and there may be some of that in the motive. But it’s really about burning the system down in a militaristic way.

If only people would open their eyes and listen to the voices of reason within the black community. When actor Morgan Freeman was asked if race played a part in wealth distribution, he flat out said no. Freeman said those using race as a reason for not getting ahead in life are only using it as an excuse. Freeman was addressing his comment to Don Lemon, a black CNN host, and said he and Lemon were proof. He said if you want to succeed, determine that in your mind and set out on that path. Thank you, Morgan!

This column is the opinion of Jeff Benziger, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Ceres Courier or Morris Newspaper Corp. of CA. How do you feel about this? Let Jeff know at