Skip to content

democrat

Pick Your Side

I am horrified by this recent story from Los Angeles, California! The L.A. County Sheriff is investigating the sexual assault of at least 10 women with severe disabilities. The Sheriff received 11 DVDs containing graphic videos of these men – these pigs – sexually assaulting women with disabilities.

Los Angeles officials seek the public's help in identifying these men depicted in drawings made using the videos
Full Story Here

 

As a disability advocate who has attended many trainings on the subject of safeguarding people with disabilities, I am painfully aware of the dangers our most vulnerable members of society face. Of course, being a parent of children with physical and developmental disabilities also makes this a personal issue. Most parents of kids with disabilities will tell you that the hardest thing about having a child with a disability is the worry they have about what will happen to their children when they are gone or no longer able to care for their kids. I know this is my biggest worry. Who will take care of my kids and keep them safe? It takes money – a lot of money – in order to properly care for a person with a disability; many require 24/7 care. It is impossible for most families to afford proper care on their own. For this reason, they need government assistance.

How does something like this L.A. story happen? I can guarantee that a big part of the problem is lack of services for people with disabilities. Sadly, when money gets tight, state budgets get cut. More often than not, it is our most vulnerable citizens who are hurt. Typical conservatives who want small government and low taxes don’t understand that cutting state spending puts people at risk. For example, here in Massachusetts, our DDS (Department of Developmental Services) is cutting back on staff for group homes. There are people in these homes who have serious mental and physical problems, yet the state is cutting out nursing care. Many homes have to share one nurse with several homes. This leaves clients being cared for by minimum wage, uneducated workers who are expected to take care of all of their needs, including the administration of medications. This is dangerous for both the health and safety of people with disabilities.

We’ve all heard the horror stories of the abuse and neglect that went on in large institutions back in the 60’s and 70’s. This led to a push to close these human warehouses in favor of smaller community settings. This was a step forward, however, if we keep cutting community services, we are going to hear more and more stories like this one in L.A. You can’t just stick people out in the community without the proper supports and safety nets in place.

Republicans, when you push for small government and lower taxes, you are jeopardizing the health and safety of the disabled, the poor and the elderly. How can you sleep at night? Some conservatives will say, “Oh, I don’t want services for people with disabilities cut, just cut out waste and the people who are cheating the system.” First, there are always going to be people who cheat a system, any system. That’s life, deal with it. But keep in mind that the corporate welfare and millionaire tax loop holes make social service waste look like a drop in the bucket. Second, when you cut taxes, people with disabilities will lose services. This is historically true and it’s happening now. Whether you like it or not, this is the way our government is currently set up. We have a two party system and a country divided. So, pick your side.

In my opinion, a country should be judge by how well it cares for it’s most vulnerable citizens. Put people before money and vote Democrat!

Share

2010 Outstanding Young Democrat

Tenth Fremont-Moroney Memorial Breakfast, April 11, 2010, Grafton Massachusetts.

Aaron giving his speech

Receiving citation from Michael O. Moore, Massachusetts State Senate

Receiving Citation from the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office.

Receiving citation from the Massachusetts House of Representatives

Aaron and US Congressman Richard E. Neal

Award winners

Linda Casey:  John F. Sullivan Citizen Activist Award

Aaron Bissell: Outstanding Young Democrat

Lt. Governor Tim Murray:  Froment-Moroney Leadership in Action Award

More Photos Here

Share

Grafton Democratic Caucus

Governor Patrick and Aaron

Aaron’s Letter to the Editor, Grafton News February 17, 2010.

To the Editor,

I was excited to be invited to the Democratic meeting that was held at the Historical Society in Grafton on Saturday. I have been interested in politics for quite a few years and volunteered on both John F. Kerry’s and Barrack Obama’s presidential campaigns. I also held signs in front of the high school for Deval Patrick in 2006 and Michael Moore in the 2008 elections.

I like politics and consider myself a Democrat. I think it is important for young people to get involved in the elections because I have two brothers who have disabilities. I feel that the Democrats are more concerned about people with disabilities, as well as the homeless.

I was very upset when Scott Brown was elected to the Senate and that is why I felt I should get more involved in politics.

I was so happy to meet Governor Deval Patrick. He gave a speech and did a great job. He talked about how he is actually doing some positive things about the economy and that we need to get the word out that things are getting better. He said that our state was in better shape than a lot of states, but the job is not done yet.

State Senator Michael Moore was also at the meeting. I met him back in 2008.

In my opinion we need to use our tax dollars to help those who are homeless and struggling. Of course I also think we should care about people with disabilities and accept all people even if they are different. I believe that the Democratic Party will do a better job at this than Republicans. Deval Patrick said that we sometimes need a helping hand to be the best we can be and that is one of the roles of government. He did say that government can not solve all our problems (like math in school!).

I have been invited to attend the monthly democratic meetings and am in hopes of getting a ride to the meetings with Kim Edgren and Lisa Kelly who are good friends of mine. They were both elected as delegates on Saturday. I was also invited by Ms. Saxe to be a student volunteer at the Democratic Campaign Institute meeting at the end of the month. I am in hopes of meeting John F. Kerry and telling him to keep advocating for my brothers.

Aaron Bissell
Sophomore at Grafton High School

Share

A Country Divided

Here is today’s headline from CNN: “Does ‘strengthening diplomacy’ warrant Nobel? Americans split” OK, I’ve just about had it with the conservatives in this country. Here’s the real deal, we are a country divided. It is really quite amazing how polarized we are as a nation. Maybe this is caused by our two party system, I don’t know. But I do know that President Bush made matters much worse.

So, Obama gets elected in part because Bush was so bad the majority of Americans realized we needed big “change”. The conservatives are saying he doesn’t deserve this award, because he hasn’t done anything to deserve it. Gee, why is he struggling to get things done…because half the country is fighting against him. Obama’s biggest mistake – in my opinion – has been trying to work with the right and bring the country together. Yes, a noble idea (or should I say ‘Nobel’ idea), but it isn’t going to work, at least not at this time in history.

Sadly, if Obama really wants to accomplish anything, he is going to have to ignore the republicans and work with the house and senate majority. The conservatives are so pissed off right now that they are not going to back Obama on ANYTHING! This has become so obvious that it’s actually laughable. The really crazy right wingers have even said publicly that they want our president to fail. Isn’t that nice!? So, it comes as no surprise that America is split on Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize.

Of course he deserves this honor. Even though half of America disagrees, a vast majority of the World knows that he deserves this award. Why was he given this honor? According to the Nobel committee, Obama was given the prize for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” To understand this, you need to look beyond Fox News at the rest of the world. In just one year, he has changed the world’s perception of the US from one of arrogance and belligerence toward one of understanding, mutual respect and peace. President Obama has inspired millions around the world with his message of hope and peace; that alone is deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize.

Congratulations President Obama!

Share

Yes We Did!

Obama Hope

Thank you George W. Bush and friends for screwing up so badly that you have force the country into a giant U-turn. It’s been a rough 8 years, but the nightmare is finally over. It’s time to move forward and make racism history, to make war history and to make the United States a country we can be proud of again.

Barack Obama is a new kind of leader with fresh ideas, honesty and integrity who stood up to the republican mud slinging with grace and dignity. He never stooped to their level. He is more interested in the people of the United States then in corporate America.

It will be like a breath of fresh air to have someone intelligent in the White House who understands science and the constitution, as well as the importance of the separation of church and state. Someone who does not believe in a talking snake and does understand why the polar icecaps are melting.

We have a lot of hard work to do, but for today, let’s celebrate the beginning of a bright new future. The election of Barack Obama is a giant step forward for the US. This is indeed a pivotal time in history and the entire world is celebrating with us.

Thank you to all of the people who worked so hard to get Barack elected, as well as so many other democrats across the country, both in local government and in the House and Senate.

Congratulations to Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Thanks for giving us hope; we are looking forward to progressive change. Yes we can!

Share