Blessing must arise from within your own mind. It is not something that comes from outside. When the positive qualities of your mind increase and the negativities decrease, that is what blessing means. The Tibetan word for blessing … means transforming into magnificent potential. Therefore, blessing refers to the development of virtuous qualities you did not previously have and the improvement of those good qualities you have already developed.
― Dalai Lama XIV
My Sunday column is a bit unusual. I went out to Paul Ryan’s congressional district in southern Wisconsin and visited all three Planned Parenthood clinics there. Then I talked with patients and helped them make videos in which they send Ryan a powerful message. We’ve posted early, so check it out!
A special thanks to those women and men who participated. They discussed intensely personal issues, from pregnancy to sexually transmitted infections, because they want Paul Ryan and the public to understand that Planned Parenthood isn’t just about abortion. It’s also about keeping people healthy, even alive. If you know someone who supports the effort to defund Planned Parenthood, I hope you’ll share with them.
So what did you make of James Comey’s testimony yesterday? I thought that it was quite wounding for President Trump, and may also highlight that the investigation henceforth will be not only about collusion with Russians but also about obstruction of justice. Comey’s subtext seemed to be to lay out the obstruction of justice case, and the fact that he supplied his memos to Bob Mueller suggests that there’s an investigation of obstruction. But at the end of the day, I don’t see a prosecution of Trump for obstruction, or his removal by a Republican-dominated Congress.
Another takeaway: If Comey delivered the White House to Trump with his last minute announcement of his investigation into the emails, Bill Clinton helped with that. Comey said he decided to make the announcement after Bill Clinton met on a plane with Loretta Lynch — a meeting that was not only foolish but now turns out to have been incredibly consequential too.
The British election was a body blow to Prime Minister May, and an indication that Labour may have more life in it. Two takeaways: First, it’s less certain that Brexit will happen, especially a hard Brexit. Second, remember that the Brexit vote a year ago was an early omen of the discontent and nationalism that led to Trump’s election; could the populist left’s surprising success in these U.K. elections be an omen of future populist leftist gains in the United States?
The World Health Organization reports that the number of suspected cholera cases in Yemen has now reached 100,000. This isn’t getting attention partly because Saudi Arabia is blocking access to journalists (including me) because it doesn’t want coverage of its crimes against humanity there. The U.S. should stop backing Saudi Arabia in its brutal blockade of Yemen, resulting in starvation and disease among Yemenis.
Street harassment of women is a global problem, in part because of impunity that arises from victim blaming. A new U.N. survey reports that in Egypt, three-quarters of people agree that “women who dress provocatively deserve to be harassed.” Women were even more likely to say that than men! And almost half of men believed that women “like the attention” when they’re harassed.
And now, with Planned Parenthood facing an effort by President Trump and Paul Ryan to cut off its federal funding, see patients give Ryan a piece of their mind. And share!