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atomicsteve@gmail.com
Twitter: @SteveAhlquist

Steve Ahlquist is an award-winning journalist, writer, artist and founding member of the Humanists of Rhode Island, a non-profit group dedicated to reason, compassion, optimism, courage and action. The views expressed are his own and not necessarily those of any organization of which he is a member.

His photos and video are usable under the Creative Commons license. Free to share with credit.

"We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.” - Elie Weisel

“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor." - Desmond Tutu

"There comes a time when neutrality and laying low become dishonorable. If you’re not in revolt, you’re in cahoots. When this period and your name are mentioned, decades hence, your grandkids will look away in shame." - David Brooks

20 responses to “Raimondo’s inconsistent message on opposing Trump”

  1. PinkHatLib

    Let me get this right, Steve, you’re suggesting Raimondo should be willing to destroy the RI Medicaid system if it comes to that? (Medicaid covers pregnant women irrespective of immigration status and all children from poor families who are born here btw)

    So how many people should the Governor be willing to kill over this? And we are talking about people who will die if you’re serious about your suggestion and assuming it comes to that. Is it 1? 10? That’s only 0.0003 deaths per undocumented worker after all. A small price to pay for consistency of message, right?

    On the other hand…. uuuuunnnngh! Raimondo baaaaad!

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  2. salgal

    Governor Raimondo, you’ve embarrassed yourself, again. Somehow when money gets added into the mix of any topic that you support in theory, you have to reframe your enthusiasm. Have your speech writers spend a little more time in the future to represent the real you. Be impeccable with your word(s).

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  3. Why Protest is Needed in Blue States - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money

    […] This sort of thing is even more critical with our governor, Gina Raimondo. The ultimate Wall Street Democrat, she is pretty bad on some issues, especially in destroying the pensions of union workers. Now, generally she has said the right thing publicly on resisting Trump, including at the beginning of the rally that challenged Whitehouse. But how far will she go in resisting Trump? Will she declare Rhode Island a sanctuary state and put it all on the line. So far, the answer is no. […]

  4. Barry Schiller

    Steve, its not so much that Governor Raimondo was inconsistent, its just that her statement of support for undocumented immigrants vaguely over-promised and you interpreted it as a blank check for their support.
    She’s right to note that the first defense against any Trump administration try to punish RI would be challenge its legality. But that said, those here illegally are not the only interest group in Rhode Island, there are many others that Federal aid supports. and it would be totally irresponsible for her to ignore that. After looking thru the revised 2017 state budget, here is my list of where some Federal aid goes, rounded off, in $Millions:
    Health $ 659M
    Transportation $266M
    K-12 Education $208M
    Human Services $111M
    RI Works $79M
    Hospitals/rehab $53M
    Child welfare $52M
    Environmental Management $34M
    Workforce development $33M
    Behavioral healthcare $21M
    RIPTA $20M
    Veteran Affairs $18M
    Income support $16M
    Elderly Affairs $13M
    Higher Education $12M
    Information Technology $7M
    Coastal Resources $5M
    State Police $3M
    Historic Preservation $2M
    Library Services $1.2M

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  5. cailin rua

    The problem is, Governor Raimondo played the typical dishonest and opportunistic politician when she spoke on the steps of the State House to those 2,000 people.

    Regardless of what the impact will be if Trump decided to retaliate if the governor were to defy his executive orders, she made a promise that she later indicated she had no intention to keep, whether she would be able to or not. I cannot believe she hadn’t deliberated on the subject before she spoke at the State House. Even if the valid points are made as to what defiance could possibly cost the fact remains she was not honest or straightforward when she spoke to the crowd. I don’t think that anyone cares about fair, open and honest government could, would or should overlook that fact.

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  6. cailin rua

    Following this thread over the last few days it reminded me of the sort of “Godgame” John Fowles would write into one his novels. I am thinking of the dilemma discussed above the way it is portrayed in the quote below. I am reminded of this particular episode which appears in his novel, The Magus. The quote is taken from Professor James Aubrey’s excellent 1991 book John Fowles: A Reference Companion:

    “Conchis continues the supposed story of his life with the narrative of the German occupation, when he served as mayor of Phraxos. A crucial event, interpreted differently by different characters in the novel, occurred after the killing of three Austrian soldiers by guerrillas. Conchis was told that the lives of eighty villagers about to be executed in reprisal would be spared if he would club the guerrilla leader to death; he refused, and took his place with the hostages, but managed to survive the mass execution.”

    I think these are the kinds of people some suggest we make bargains with. Does anyone really believe we can bargain with them in good faith? I think any perceived advantage in doing so could amount to nothing more than delusion.

    I have never seen our current “Democrat” governor standing very far from Manhattan Institute darling Rudy Giuliani. She seems to have a lot of friends down there.

    For fun, the film version of the book w/ Anthony Quinn as mayor of Phraxos, “the responsibility for the fates of these peasants is up to you . . . ” 5:57 into the video:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQRFnYvQJVA

    Nazi: “It is forbidden for Greeks to carry loaded weapons”

    Conchis: “But I don’t understand.”

    Nazi: “You have 15 seconds to understand.”

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  7. Indivisible RI asks Raimondo to clarify her commitment to undocumented RIers

    […] State House two weeks ago to rally for the rights of immigrants, refugees and the undocumented, and a different message for WGBH two days later, when she said she wouldn’t risk losing federal funding over the […]

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