Out of the Gobi

[Please note: The word “Featured” on the left side above was NOT inserted by this blogger, but apparently was inserted by WordPress, and it cannot be removed. NO post in this blog is sponsored.]

The Book of the Week is “Out of the Gobi, My Story of China and America” by Weijian Shan, published in 2019. This volume richly detailed the hardships faced by ordinary Chinese people from the 1950’s onward.

Born in 1953, the author spent most of his childhood in Beijing. As is well known, the Communist dictator Mao Tse-tung finally achieved nationwide dominance over the Nationalist (allegedly democratic, but still horribly corrupt) Chiang Kai-shek at the dawn of the 1950’s. (For additional info on how Communism is different from Socialism and Capitalism, see the bottom portion of this blog’s post, “The Last Idealist”). Mao proceeded to do grave damage to his country, causing the deaths of millions from starvation and financial disaster (among other causes).

Beginning in 1965, Mao declared there would be a new world order in his country, in the form of a Cultural Revolution. One of many goings-on during this period was burning, destruction or confiscation of all books except for those by the authors Marx (Karl, not Groucho), Engels, Lenin and Stalin.

The evil West’s bourgeois lifestyle was violently stamped out by Mao’s private police force, the Red Guard (which consisted of mostly young, armed and dangerous radical hooligans– sociopathic sadists), which brainwashed schoolkids of all ages, up to university level, to make Revolution. They destroyed the statue of the Venus de Milo, and denounced the Russian classical novels. A couple of years later, chaos reigned, but Mao was still in control.

In autumn 1966, at thirteen years old, the author was brainwashed by the youth movement to go on a fact-finding mission in the countryside. The government did away with entrance examinations, and in fact, all formal schooling. For about three weeks, the author and his peers traveled around by trains, buses and on foot to personally witness the Revolution. At one point, they went on a hike in the mountains, retracing the steps of the Red Army. Their travel expenses were paid for, but the conditions were quite primitive.

Into 1967, upon orders handed down by Mao, the youths protested against Capitalism in a way roughly equivalent to “Occupy Wall Street” but they got bored. They were neither studying nor working. For, a few years prior, the dictator had successfully thrown the country into disarray, forcing the closure of not only all schools, but bookstores, libraries, parks, movie theaters and houses of worship.

Thousands of people disappeared, were abducted from their homes– to be jailed, tortured, killed, for so much as speaking, writing or acting in the least way, critical of the government. In the environment of fear and force, they were under pressure to tattle on others before they themselves were punished.

Schools in the author’s area finally did reopen in autumn 1968, but education was still lacking. The author’s “Worker-Peasant-Soldier Middle School” (grades nine and ten– after what would be American grammar school) had no textbooks but students were drilled only on Mao’s propaganda.

In the summer of 1969, Mao realized it was time to change tack by sending young people to the countryside, as they had been making trouble in the cities long enough. He kept them busy by inspiring them to do hard manual labor, and study revolutionary thought. The kids truly tried their hardest– they were blindly obedient to the cause of defending their motherland against Soviet aggression. In autumn 1969, the whole nation went crazy constructing air-raid shelters and tunnels.

The author was sent to the Gobi desert in Inner Mongolia. Again, conditions were extremely primitive. He and his fellows got military training. However, due to a weapons shortage, another platoon was chosen to receive (outdated, Soviet-made) submachine guns. None of the company leaders had any experience in battle, but they inspired passion in their subordinates, anyway. Under the blazing summer sun, there were vicious mosquitoes. It was freezing in winter.

The author described his physical and psychological suffering of the next several years, as his group strove to complete a series of months or years-long agricultural and infrastructure projects that actually produced a net negative effect on food production and quality of life.

In 1979, the United States resumed formal diplomatic relations with China. People in China queued up for hours and hours for all kinds of consumer goods. The author, by then a recent university graduate, reveled in his new lap of luxury– he had time to read for hours and hours, had enough to eat, and got a hot shower once a week.

Read the book to learn a wealth of additional information on: the author’s experiences in China from the 1950’s into the 1980’s (which involved a slew of health hazards) including but was far from limited to:

  • all his hard manual labor and psychological trauma;
  • his short stint as a medical “doctor” in 1971;
  • how he enjoyed the benefits of a student exchange program in the 1980’s; and
  • his troubles with the INS (hint– “… a mistake in the new letter: the date by which we had to leave the country was left blank… the INS had somehow lost our file…”).

This substantial volume reveals why, politically, economically, culturally and socially, and in quality of life– overall, China is still many decades behind America (never mind the propagandists who claim that China is allegedly becoming an economic powerhouse and will someday overtake the U.S.).

I Am A Girl From Africa

[Please note: The word “Featured” on the left side above was NOT inserted by this blogger, but apparently was inserted by WordPress, and it cannot be removed. NO post in this blog is sponsored.]

The Book of the Week is “I Am A Girl From Africa, a memoir (sic)” by Elizabeth Nyamayaro, published in 2021.

Born in 1975, Nyamayaro grew up in Zimbabwe. Her family belonged to the Shona tribe. She spent her early years residing in a hut in a rural village, where she was treated like an only child, unwittingly through dysfunctional-family circumstances. Her grandmother taught her to do all sorts of chores: fetching water, hunting birds with a slingshot, fishing with a sharp stick, shelling maize, tending to the goats and chickens, weeding the fields, and cooking vegetables in a clay pot over a fire that she ignited.

Life-threatening conditions abounded from diseases, poor nutrition, hostile animals such as hyenas, and droughts such as those that occurred in 1983 and 1985. The author’s gratitude for the life-saving rehydration by a member of UNICEF, led her to develop a burning desire as an adult to “give back” through working for the United Nations.

In the early 1980’s, initially, Nyamayaro’s grandmother rejoiced at the news from her battery-operated radio, that the country had a new leader, the dark-skinned Robert Mugabe. The end of British colonialism ought to have meant an end to the needless killing of wildlife, theft of precious stones, and oppression of Africans. However, a new leader is just one individual who might or might not change things for the better in the long run, given his personality and the vicissitudes of his time and place in history.

The author– who appears to have bragging-rights, given the hardships she faced– made progress on various Third-World, quality-of-life causes during her career. Mitigation of the global oppression of females was one such cause. The author was pleased to report that in 2013, the nation of Rwanda, in the previous decade, had made great strides in electing women to its parliament. But there is still so much work to be done in Mongolia, India, Zimbabwe, and the United States, etc. because propagandized gender-stereotypes are still discouraging women from running for office.

The author recounted that one day in 1975 in Iceland, all the women went on strike. The country then realized how vital females were to life. Even so, it took until 2018 (!) to legislate there on the issue of gender equality in the private sector, of equal pay for equal work. Additionally, on so many other fronts, gender equality is lacking even in the nations that consider themselves the most advanced on earth!

Read the book to learn many more details on the struggles Nyamayaro faced in her life and times.

Call Me American

The Book of the Week is “Call Me American, A Memoir” by Abdi Nor Iftin with Max Alexander, published in 2018.

“There were more guns in the city than people. There was more ammunition than food. It became a thing to own a gun to save your life. Most people slept with a loaded AK-47 sitting next to them.”

The above was the author’s description of lawless Somalia (not the future United States) during the 1990’s.

Somalia, formerly two different colonies– of Britain and Italy, became a sovereign territory in 1960. Born around 1985 in Somalia (where birthdays aren’t important), the author had an older brother and later, younger sisters. Years before, his father’s side of the Muslim family, the Rahanweyn clan (farmers and nomads) was forced, due to drought, to give up herding as their livelihood. Fortunately, the father was able to become a professional basketball player. The mother was a traditional female of Islam– expected to bear and raise the children, and do all the chores and housework.

At the dawn of the 1990’s in Somalia, tensions boiled over between two of the five clans who desired to run the government. Warlords took to fighting that involved looting of shops, bullets and rocket fire. Rebels ousted the “president.” Former government employees fled to America, Canada or the United Kingdom.

Common people like the author’s family who were forced to evacuate their Mogadishu homes were caught in the crossfire of the anarchy, and died anonymously and were left in mass graves in droves from the usual causes– bullets or other weaponry, disease and starvation.

The family had no car, so like thousands of others, they walked miles and miles along unpaved roads with cows, donkeys, dogs and chickens, trying not to get arbitrarily shot by sadistic child-soldiers for being in the wrong tribe, or blown up by rockets (supplied to the anti-government Somali rebels by Ethiopia, sworn enemy of Somalia). Occasionally, they got an extremely crowded truck ride from a driver who had no beef against their tribe. Word-of-mouth rumors led them to believe that the city of Baidoa was a less dangerous place to be than Mogadishu. But that was a relative assessment.

In October 1993, sixteen American soldiers were killed in a Black Hawk helicopter attack at the hands of Soviet weaponry supplied to Somali soldiers. In March 1994, the Americans left Somalia. Ethiopia and Kenya supplied qat to Somali soldiers.

Beginning in the late 1990’s, the United States government paid the warlords (as though they were bounty hunters) to catch radical and foreign Islamists. In the single-digit 2000’s, the warlords assassinated the chairman of one of the five merged Islamic Courts that resolved local legal disputes in Somalia. The merging set the stage for a radical Islamic takeover, but ordinary Somalis were angry at the Western-backed warlords.

As a way to escape the trauma and wreckage around him, in the late 1990’s, the author got caught up in the American pop-cultural scene at local storefronts that: sold boom boxes and cassette tapes of Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, reggae and hip-hop music; and screened American movies such as Terminator. He passionately learned English and hip-hop dancing from them.

When the author’s family’s circumstances improved, his horrified parents administered the usual beatings when he put up posters of American cultural icons on his bedroom wall, including one of Madonna in a bikini. His mother thought of the United States as a Christian (evil) country.

However, the author was sufficiently street-smart to complete his seven-year education of memorizing the Koran in Arabic, all 114 chapters, 6,266 verses of it, even though the headmaster of his madrassa was a corporal-punishment tyrant.

Read the book to learn further details of the major ironies, among others, that graced the author’s incredible story: 1) the combination of his (sinful) passions and (highly praised) education that provided him with survival skills in a country where life was cheap and any minute could be one’s last; and 2) “Pictures and names associated with America were crimes, not counting the pictures and names on the American dollar bills that they had in their pockets.”

Revolution 2.0 – BONUS POST

The Bonus Book of the Week is “Revolution 2.0, The Power of the People Is Greater Than the People in Power, a Memoir” by Wael Ghonim, published in 2012.

Born in 1980, the author attended high school in Egypt. The country had a rote education system, and cheating was rampant. The underpaid teachers derived the bulk of their income from private tutoring.

The 1980’s had seen the government of Egypt start to change for the worse. There was increasing poverty, brain drain, and oppression of religious groups. In 1987, Hosni Mubarak first came to power. He initially promised to serve only the two-term limit as president. But as he acquired more power, he acquired more ownership. And more power. And broke his promise. Every presidential “election” every six years thereafter, was rigged to allow Mubarak’s reelection three more times. There was only one political party. His.

While attending university in 1998, the author launched an Islamic website that featured audio tracks of the Qur’an. He was a technology geek, and became especially well-versed in Web communications. In 2004, a group of dissidents formed a group called Kefaya, meaning “enough” in Arabic. In 2006, ordinary Egyptians began protesting against the corruption of the regime.

In 2008, after eight months of numerous interviews, the author got a job with Google. In January 2010, in order to escape Mubarak’s oppressive regime, he and his wife and children moved to Dubai. It was around then that the author became politically vocal about Egypt’s rotten government. He wrote, “Out of hopelessness came anger.”

The author and a friend launched a Facebook page to promote an opposition candidate to Mubarak, as another “election” was coming up in 2011. The regime’s public relations machine was a master at smearing its political enemies; so it did, early and often.

In June 2010, the author created a Facebook page to tell the world about how the Egyptian government tortured and killed a dissident, and he posted a gruesome photo of the said dissident. Users commented on it in droves. In the coming months, the author and others used social media to plan peaceful protests to bring down the Mubarak government.

The author helped spark a movement that experienced growing-pains typical for such a movement. For a while, it became a victim of its own success: when a movement grows significantly in a short time– due to the increasing number of people in it– members begin to form factions and disagree, and go off and do their own thing. So some disgruntled members sabotage the original group’s goals.

Also, the political enemies of the movement see it growing, so they send infiltrators to divide and conquer it. That is why progress has been so slow for so many seemingly large political movements, such as civil rights and feminism.

In autumn 2010, the author was starting to get emotionally burnt out. He mistakenly used his personal account that revealed his true identity. Up to then, he had been super-careful to use false identities in his social media accounts, so as to avoid being arrested, jailed, interrogated, tortured and possibly murdered.

Egyptians were encouraged by Tunisia’s street protests, which were going on around the same time. But Egypt’s problems were worse. The author took the plunge to call Egypt’s movement “Revolution Against Torture, Poverty, Corruption and Unemployment.” He helped shape the protest messaging that convinced the public to peacefully take to the streets on Egyptian Police Day, January 25, 2011. He explained that he opposed only human rights abuses committed by law enforcement officials, not the respectful maintenance of order.

The author learned that: his contacts and access to communications were more important than plans, because best-laid plans always go awry– conditions on the ground change rapidly, and “People’s attachment to ideas is much stronger than their attachment to individuals, who can be doubted and defamed.”

Read the book to learn the details of the backstory, and what happened next.

Armenian Golgotha

The Book of the Week is “Armenian Golgotha, A Memoir of the Armenian Genocide 1915-1918” by Grigoris Balakian, translated by Peter Balakian with Aris Sevag, originally published in 1922. [Armenian, not American.] This large volume recounted the author’s personal experiences during the decade he became a victim of tensions that boiled over between Turks and Armenians in Turkey during and after WWI. As is well known, hatreds between peoples ebb and flow, but it was the first time in human history that one specific ethnic group sought total extermination of another.

The author pointed out that, “… the principal causes of a country’s downfall are internal dissension, violent partisan struggle, lack of religion, political crime, and economic unraveling; all these per se bring with them unbridled excesses.”

On the eve of WWI, the author of this personal account was a reverend who had gone to Germany to study. The outbreak of war prompted him to go from Berlin to Constantinople via rail and steamship (a two-week trip) to fight on behalf of his people, the Armenians. He was street-smart, and declined to go the rural Turkish diocese of Erzinjan, despite having been named to the position of locum tenens there. Another minister went in his place, and was shot and dismembered by the Ittihad Special Organization. Such atrocities were to be repeated in spades for the next several years.

Pasha Talaat, the interior minister of Turkey, had a secret service working for him, reporting all lifestyle-information on Armenians in Constantinople. He wanted to finish the job that was started in 1909– a small-scale massacre of a few tens of thousands of Armenians. The naive victims had no clue what they were in for. They believed the pervasive government propaganda that told them everything was dandy. No one wanted to believe they were in danger.

The Ittihad government in Turkey executed its unspeakable horrors methodically. It divided the Armenian population into various segments in order to commit its now-infamous genocide. Different groups in different parts of Turkey were subjected to largely similar treatment: were sent reassuring messages, disarmed, stripped of their assets, arrested, deported purportedly for their own protection (from the Russians), and were finally hacked to death by sociopathic, sadistic common Turkish people, largely with martial-arts weapons and timber and farm implements, not with firearms. The females were put through the same process, but they were raped before their deaths, except for a small number, who were forcibly converted to Islam and sent to Turkish harems instead.

The Turkish authorities began by conscripting all Armenian males between the ages of twenty and 46, sending them to the fighting at the Russian border. Then they enslaved them in road-building in the interior of Asia Minor. Unsanitary, cruel, starvation conditions resulted in many deaths. In summer 1915,the Minister of War ordered Turkish soldiers to ruthlessly slaughter the remaining survivors. There was a small resistance movement in the mountains, but it was weak. Of course, too, there were unsung heroes– German, Swiss, Austrian and Italian civil engineers working on the railroad who secretly tried to save Armenian lives.

The author was able to pull some strings through his contacts so that he escaped conscription. However, he was eventually arrested and made to travel for months in a caravan of tens of people like himself, about half of whom survived, suffering near-death experiences over and over. A few of them had been able to bring some of their wealth with them in the form of gold coins, with which they were able to bribe local officials and law enforcement.

Read the book to learn every emotionally jarring detail of the author’s story; and: the Germans’ connection to, the historical backdrop of, and about the three Turkish leaders most responsible for, the whole sordid affair; and the fates of the major figures involved.

full circle (sic)

The Book of the Week is “full circle (sic), Escape from Baghdad and the Return” by Saul Silas Fathi, published in 2005. The author interspersed his personal experiences with a brief history of everywhere he had traveled, and brief stories of numerous members of his extensive family tree. Some chapters repeated the same information again, in case the reader had a short memory. Clearly, he wanted his descendants to know all about him and their ancestors.

In 1938 in Basra in Iraq, born into an upper middle-class Jewish family that would eventually have eight children, the author had lots of aunts and uncles. When Israel declared its independence in 1948, Iraq began to oppress its Jews (Zionists), and Communists. The author’s father, a government official, lost his job.

In August 1948, the father paid people-smugglers to help the family’s oldest sons, the author and his younger brother– a year and a half younger– to take them to Israel. Their two uncles in their late teens, were also in the same group of refugees. They had relatives already living in Israel.

Starting in summer 1950 and for about ten months, the Iraqi government allowed its Jews to leave with only the clothes on their backs, forced them to give up their Iraqi citizenship, plus they had to promise never to return, among other conditions. Many who fled to Israel ended up living with Holocaust survivors (more traumatized than the author) in refugee camps.

Fathi was bored of Israel by his late teens, and thought he would go live in Brazil for a few months, beginning in 1958. In Sao Paulo, he and a friend went to a Baptist church that offered free food to the destitute. Lots of Jews worshipped there after escaping the Nazis, and some converted. Fathi was so down on his luck, he worked for food, too.

Fast-forward to spring 1960. Because the author was open to new experiences and met many people who assisted him in his life, he was finally able to obtain a visa to study in the United States.

However, by October 1960, he was running out of money because as a student, he wasn’t allowed to hold a job to support himself. That’s when a chance meeting with a guard at the New York Public Library’s research branch (the one with the lions in front) suggested that he join the U.S. Army to earn money to continue his college education. He did so.

In early 1962, U.S. Immigration sent Fathi a letter telling him that since he wasn’t a U.S. citizen and wasn’t in the process of becoming one, his “… recruitment was an unfortunate mistake, and that any law which permitted such action was abolished at the end of the Korean War, in 1953.” Absurdly, litigation in connection therewith dragged on for years.

But that is the American way. If one feels one has been wronged, the way to settle it is through the courts. However, this is always costly– financially, emotionally and temporally. The costs are what leaders who abuse their power count on, to allow them to continue their tyranny.

Such is the mentality of the current leadership in the United States. NOT ONE previous president lifted a finger to unduly oppress Americans to allegedly contain a contagious, fatal disease. Only this current one. Why is that?

The oppression has certain similarities to a psychological process called divestiture socialization– a ritual imposed on newcomers to social groups in which there is tight bonding of members. Such groups include those in the military, medical school, boarding schools, fraternities and sororities. The newcomers are beaten down and if they survive their hazing, are forced to adapt to the culture of the abusive hierarchy. The new recruits who go along to get along get Stockholm syndrome, because they know that someday, they will become the oppressors.

Along these lines, it’s time to name names of the COVID CONSPIRATORS– those elected officials who are most responsible for punishing the American people for electing a president they themselves don’t like, punishing even those who voted against the current president.

By the way, some American employers make employees clean up the mess they made. Then they fire them. One should remember the mess the following conspirators made, and– come their reelection time, vote them out of office. Besides litigation, that’s the American way, too.

[Please excuse any omissions or errors in the following lists, as WordPress is buggy and had trouble handling the large volume of text, and would not delete specific items. Hackers may also have modified specific items.]

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP

GOVERNORS

Alabama Kay Ivey
Alaska Mike Dunleavy
Arizona Doug Ducey
Arkansas Asa Hutchinson
California Gavin Newsom
Colorado Jared Polis
Connecticut Ned Lamont
Delaware John C. Carney Jr.
Florida Ron DeSantis
Georgia Brian Kemp
Hawaii David Ige
Idaho Brad Little
Illinois J.B. Pritzker
Indiana Eric Holcomb
Iowa Kim Reynolds
Kansas Laura Kelly
Kentucky Andy Beshear
Louisiana John Bel Edwards
Maine Janet T. Mills
Maryland Larry Hogan
Massachusetts Charles D. Baker
Michigan Gretchen Whitmer
Minnesota Tim Walz
Mississippi Tate Reeves
Missouri Mike Parson
Montana Steve Bullock
Nebraska Pete Ricketts
Nevada Steve Sisolak
New Hampshire Chris Sununu
New Jersey Phil Murphy
New Mexico Michelle Lujan Grisham
New York Andrew Cuomo
North Carolina Roy Cooper
North Dakota Doug Burgum
Ohio Richard Michael DeWine
Oklahoma Kevin Stitt
Oregon Kate Brown
Pennsylvania Tom Wolf
Rhode Island Gina Raimondo
South Carolina Henry McMaster
South Dakota Kristi L. Noem
Tennessee Bill Lee
Texas Greg Abbott
Utah Gary Herbert
Vermont Phil Scott
Virginia Ralph Northam
Washington Jay Inslee
West Virginia Jim Justice
Wisconsin Tony Evers
Wyoming Mark Gordon

U.S. SENATORS

Alexander, Lamar TN
Baldwin, Tammy WI
Barrasso, John WY
Bennet, Michael F. CO
Blackburn, Marsha TN
Blumenthal, Richard CT
Blunt, Roy MO
Booker, Cory A. NJ
Boozman, John AR
Braun, Mike IN
Brown, Sherrod OH
Burr, Richard NC
Cantwell, Maria WA
Capito, Shelley Moore WV
Cardin, Benjamin L. MD
Carper, Thomas R. DE
Casey, Robert P., Jr. PA
Cassidy, Bill LA
Collins, Susan M. ME
Coons, Christopher A. DE
Cornyn, John TX
Cortez Masto, Catherine NV
Cotton, Tom AR
Cramer, Kevin ND
Crapo, Mike ID
Cruz, Ted TX
Daines, Steve MT
Duckworth, Tammy IL
Durbin, Richard J. IL
Enzi, Michael B. WY
Ernst, Joni IA
Feinstein, Dianne CA
Fischer, Deb NE
Gardner, Cory CO
Gillibrand, Kirsten E. NY
Graham, Lindsey SC
Grassley, Chuck IA
Harris, Kamala D. CA
Hassan, Margaret Wood NH
Hawley, Josh MO
Heinrich, Martin NM
Hirono, Mazie K. HI
Hoeven, John ND
Hyde-Smith, Cindy MS
Inhofe, James M. OK
Johnson, Ron WI
Jones, Doug AL
Kaine, Tim VA
Kennedy, John LA
King, Angus S., Jr. ME
Klobuchar, Amy MN
Lankford, James OK
Leahy, Patrick J. VT
Lee, Mike UT
Loeffler, Kelly GA
Manchin, Joe, III WV
Markey, Edward J. MA
McConnell, Mitch KY
McSally, Martha AZ
Menendez, Robert NJ
Merkley, Jeff OR
Moran, Jerry KS
Murkowski, Lisa AK
Murphy, Christopher CT
Murray, Patty WA
Paul, Rand KY
Perdue, David GA
Peters, Gary C. MI
Portman, Rob OH
Reed, Jack RI
Risch, James E. ID
Roberts, Pat KS
Romney, Mitt UT
Rosen, Jacky NV
Rounds, Mike SD
Rubio, Marco FL
Sanders, Bernard VT
Sasse, Ben NE
Schatz, Brian HI
Schumer, Charles E. NY
Scott, Rick FL
Scott, Tim SC
Shaheen, Jeanne NH
Shelby, Richard C. AL
Sinema, Kyrsten AZ
Smith, Tina MN
Stabenow, Debbie MI
Sullivan, Dan AK
Tester, Jon MT
Thune, John SD
Tillis, Thom NC
Toomey, Patrick J. PA
Udall, Tom NM
Van Hollen, Chris MD
Warner, Mark R. VA
Warren, Elizabeth MA
Whitehouse, Sheldon RI
Wicker, Roger F. MS
Wyden, Ron OR
Young, Todd IN

U.S. REPRESENTATIVES
Abraham, Ralph
Louisiana’s 5th congressional district, 2015-2020
Adams, Alma
North Carolina’s 12th congressional district, 2014-2020
Aderholt, Robert
Alabama’s 4th congressional district, 1997-2020
Aguilar, Pete
California’s 31st congressional district, 2015-2020
Allen, Rick
Georgia’s 12th congressional district, 2015-2020
Allred, Colin
Texas’s 32nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Amash, Justin
Michigan’s 3rd congressional district, 2011-2020

Amodei, Mark
Nevada’s 2nd congressional district, 2011-2020
Armstrong, Kelly
North Dakota At Large, 2019-2020
Arrington, Jodey
Texas’s 19th congressional district, 2017-2020
Axne, Cynthia
Iowa’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Babin, Brian
Texas’s 36th congressional district, 2015-2020
Bacon, Don
Nebraska’s 2nd congressional district, 2017-2020
Baird, James
Indiana’s 4th congressional district, 2019-2020
Balderson, Troy
Ohio’s 12th congressional district, 2018-2020
Banks, Jim
Indiana’s 3rd congressional district, 2017-2020
Barr, Garland “Andy”
Kentucky’s 6th congressional district, 2013-2020
Barragán, Nanette
California’s 44th congressional district, 2017-2020
Bass, Karen
California’s 37th congressional district, 2013-2020
Beatty, Joyce
Ohio’s 3rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Bera, Ami
California’s 7th congressional district, 2013-2020
Bergman, Jack
Michigan’s 1st congressional district, 2017-2020
Beyer, Donald
Virginia’s 8th congressional district, 2015-2020
Biggs, Andy
Arizona’s 5th congressional district, 2017-2020
Bilirakis, Gus
Florida’s 12th congressional district, 2013-2020
Bishop, Dan
North Carolina’s 9th congressional district, 2019-2020
Bishop, Rob
Utah’s 1st congressional district, 2003-2020
Bishop, Sanford
Georgia’s 2nd congressional district, 1993-2020
Blackburn, Marsha
Junior Senator for Tennessee, 2019-2024
Blumenauer, Earl
Oregon’s 3rd congressional district, 1996-2020
Blunt Rochester, Lisa
Delaware At Large, 2017-2020
Bonamici, Suzanne
Oregon’s 1st congressional district, 2012-2020
Bost, Mike
Illinois’s 12th congressional district, 2015-2020
Boyle, Brendan
Pennsylvania’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Brady, Kevin
Texas’s 8th congressional district, 1997-2020

Schumer, Charles
New York’s 22nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Brooks, Mo
Alabama’s 5th congressional district, 2011-2020
Brooks, Susan
Indiana’s 5th congressional district, 2013-2020
Brown, Anthony
Maryland’s 4th congressional district, 2017-2020
Brownley, Julia
California’s 26th congressional district, 2013-2020
Buchanan, Vern
Florida’s 16th congressional district, 2013-2020
Buck, Ken
Colorado’s 4th congressional district, 2015-2020
Bucshon, Larry
Indiana’s 8th congressional district, 2011-2020
Budd, Ted
North Carolina’s 13th congressional district, 2017-2020
Burchett, Tim
Tennessee’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Burgess, Michael
Texas’s 26th congressional district, 2003-2020
Bustos, Cheri
Illinois’s 17th congressional district, 2013-2020
Butterfield, George “G.K.”
North Carolina’s 1st congressional district, 2004-2020
Byrne, Bradley
Alabama’s 1st congressional district, 2014-2020
Calvert, Ken
California’s 42nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Capito, Shelley
Junior Senator for West Virginia, 2015-2020
Carbajal, Salud
California’s 24th congressional district, 2017-2020
Carper, Thomas
Senior Senator for Delaware, 2001-2024
Carson, André
Indiana’s 7th congressional district, 2008-2020
Carter, Buddy
Georgia’s 1st congressional district, 2015-2020
Carter, John
Texas’s 31st congressional district, 2003-2020
Cartwright, Matthew
Pennsylvania’s 8th congressional district, 2019-2020
Case, Ed
Hawaii’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Casten, Sean
Illinois’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Castor, Kathy
Florida’s 14th congressional district, 2013-2020
Castro, Joaquin
Texas’s 20th congressional district, 2013-2020
Chabot, Steve
Ohio’s 1st congressional district, 2011-2020
Cheney, Liz
Wyoming At Large, 2017-2020
Chu, Judy
California’s 27th congressional district, 2013-2020
Cicilline, David
Rhode Island’s 1st congressional district, 2011-2020
Cisneros, Gilbert
California’s 39th congressional district, 2019-2020
Clark, Katherine
Massachusetts’s 5th congressional district, 2013-2020
Clarke, Yvette
New York’s 9th congressional district, 2013-2020
Clay, Lacy
Missouri’s 1st congressional district, 2001-2020
Cleaver, Emanuel
Missouri’s 5th congressional district, 2005-2020
Cline, Ben
Virginia’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Cloud, Michael
Texas’s 27th congressional district, 2018-2020
Clyburn, James “Jim”
South Carolina’s 6th congressional district, 1993-2020
Cohen, Steve
Tennessee’s 9th congressional district, 2007-2020
Cole, Tom
Oklahoma’s 4th congressional district, 2003-2020
Collins, Doug
Georgia’s 9th congressional district, 2013-2020
Comer, James
Kentucky’s 1st congressional district, 2016-2020
Conaway, Michael
Texas’s 11th congressional district, 2005-2020
Connolly, Gerald
Virginia’s 11th congressional district, 2009-2020
Cook, Paul
California’s 8th congressional district, 2013-2020
Cooper, Jim
Tennessee’s 5th congressional district, 2003-2020
Correa, Luis
California’s 46th congressional district, 2017-2020
Costa, Jim
California’s 16th congressional district, 2013-2020
Courtney, Joe
Connecticut’s 2nd congressional district, 2007-2020
Cox, TJ
California’s 21st congressional district, 2019-2020
Craig, Angie
Minnesota’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Crawford, Eric “Rick”
Arkansas’s 1st congressional district, 2011-2020
Crenshaw, Dan
Texas’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Crist, Charlie
Florida’s 13th congressional district, 2017-2020
Crow, Jason
Colorado’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Cruz, Ted
Junior Senator for Texas, 2013-2024
Cuellar, Henry
Texas’s 28th congressional district, 2005-2020
Cunningham, Joe
South Carolina’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Curtis, John
Utah’s 3rd congressional district, 2017-2020
Cárdenas, Tony
California’s 29th congressional district, 2013-2020
Davids, Sharice
Kansas’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Davidson, Warren
Ohio’s 8th congressional district, 2016-2020
Davis, Danny
Illinois’s 7th congressional district, 1997-2020
Davis, Rodney
Illinois’s 13th congressional district, 2013-2020
Davis, Susan
California’s 53rd congressional district, 2003-2020
DeFazio, Peter
Oregon’s 4th congressional district, 1987-2020
DeGette, Diana
Colorado’s 1st congressional district, 1997-2020
DeLauro, Rosa
Connecticut’s 3rd congressional district, 1991-2020
DeSaulnier, Mark
California’s 11th congressional district, 2015-2020
Dean, Madeleine
Pennsylvania’s 4th congressional district, 2019-2020
DelBene, Suzan
Washington’s 1st congressional district, 2012-2020
Delgado, Antonio
New York’s 19th congressional district, 2019-2020
Demings, Val
Florida’s 10th congressional district, 2017-2020
DesJarlais, Scott
Tennessee’s 4th congressional district, 2011-2020
Deutch, Theodore
Florida’s 22nd congressional district, 2017-2020
Diaz-Balart, Mario
Florida’s 25th congressional district, 2013-2020
Dingell, Debbie
Michigan’s 12th congressional district, 2015-2020
Doggett, Lloyd
Texas’s 35th congressional district, 2013-2020
Doyle, Michael “Mike”
Pennsylvania’s 18th congressional district, 2019-2020
Duncan, Jeff
South Carolina’s 3rd congressional district, 2011-2020
Dunn, Neal
Florida’s 2nd congressional district, 2017-2020
Emmer, Tom
Minnesota’s 6th congressional district, 2015-2020
Engel, Eliot
New York’s 16th congressional district, 2013-2020
Escobar, Veronica
Texas’s 16th congressional district, 2019-2020
Eshoo, Anna
California’s 18th congressional district, 2013-2020
Espaillat, Adriano
New York’s 13th congressional district, 2017-2020
Estes, Ron
Kansas’s 4th congressional district, 2017-2020
Evans, Dwight
Pennsylvania’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Ferguson, Drew
Representative for Georgia’s 3rd congressional district, 2017-2020
Finkenauer, Abby
Representative for Iowa’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Fitzpatrick, Brian
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Fleischmann, Charles “Chuck”
Representative for Tennessee’s 3rd congressional district, 2011-2020
Fletcher, Lizzie
Representative for Texas’s 7th congressional district, 2019-2020
Flores, Bill
Representative for Texas’s 17th congressional district, 2011-2020
Fortenberry, Jeff
Representative for Nebraska’s 1st congressional district, 2005-2020
Foster, Bill
Representative for Illinois’s 11th congressional district, 2013-2020
Foxx, Virginia
Representative for North Carolina’s 5th congressional district, 2005-2020
Frankel, Lois
Representative for Florida’s 21st congressional district, 2017-2020
Fudge, Marcia
Representative for Ohio’s 11th congressional district, 2008-2020
Fulcher, Russ
Representative for Idaho’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Gabbard, Tulsi
Representative for Hawaii’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Gaetz, Matt
Representative for Florida’s 1st congressional district, 2017-2020
Gallagher, Mike
Representative for Wisconsin’s 8th congressional district, 2017-2020
Gallego, Ruben
Representative for Arizona’s 7th congressional district, 2015-2020
Garamendi, John
Representative for California’s 3rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Garcia, Mike
Representative for California’s 25th congressional district, 2020-2020
Garcia, Sylvia
Representative for Texas’s 29th congressional district, 2019-2020
García, Jesús
Representative for Illinois’s 4th congressional district, 2019-2020
Gianforte, Greg
Representative for Montana At Large, 2017-2020
Gibbs, Bob
Representative for Ohio’s 7th congressional district, 2013-2020
Gohmert, Louie
Representative for Texas’s 1st congressional district, 2005-2020
Golden, Jared
Representative for Maine’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Gomez, Jimmy
Representative for California’s 34th congressional district, 2017-2020
Gonzalez, Anthony
Representative for Ohio’s 16th congressional district, 2019-2020
Gonzalez, Vicente
Representative for Texas’s 15th congressional district, 2017-2020
González-Colón, Jenniffer
Resident Commissioner for Puerto Rico, 2017-2020
Gooden, Lance
Representative for Texas’s 5th congressional district, 2019-2020
Gosar, Paul
Representative for Arizona’s 4th congressional district, 2013-2020
Gottheimer, Josh
Representative for New Jersey’s 5th congressional district, 2017-2020
Granger, Kay
Representative for Texas’s 12th congressional district, 1997-2020
Graves, Garret
Representative for Louisiana’s 6th congressional district, 2015-2020
Graves, Sam
Representative for Missouri’s 6th congressional district, 2001-2020
Graves, Tom
Representative for Georgia’s 14th congressional district, 2013-2020
Green, Al
Representative for Texas’s 9th congressional district, 2005-2020
Green, Mark
Representative for Tennessee’s 7th congressional district, 2019-2020
Griffith, Morgan
Representative for Virginia’s 9th congressional district, 2011-2020
Grijalva, Raúl
Representative for Arizona’s 3rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Grothman, Glenn
Representative for Wisconsin’s 6th congressional district, 2015-2020
Guest, Michael
Representative for Mississippi’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Guthrie, Brett
Representative for Kentucky’s 2nd congressional district, 2009-2020
Haaland, Debra
Representative for New Mexico’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Hagedorn, Jim
Representative for Minnesota’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Harder, Josh
Representative for California’s 10th congressional district, 2019-2020
Harris, Andy
Representative for Maryland’s 1st congressional district, 2011-2020
Hartzler, Vicky
Representative for Missouri’s 4th congressional district, 2011-2020
Hastings, Alcee
Representative for Florida’s 20th congressional district, 2013-2020
Hayes, Jahana
Representative for Connecticut’s 5th congressional district, 2019-2020
Heck, Denny
Representative for Washington’s 10th congressional district, 2013-2020
Hern, Kevin
Representative for Oklahoma’s 1st congressional district, 2018-2020
Herrera Beutler, Jaime
Representative for Washington’s 3rd congressional district, 2011-2020
Hice, Jody
Representative for Georgia’s 10th congressional district, 2015-2020
Higgins, Brian
Representative for New York’s 26th congressional district, 2013-2020
Higgins, Clay
Representative for Louisiana’s 3rd congressional district, 2017-2020
Hill, French
Representative for Arkansas’s 2nd congressional district, 2015-2020
Himes, James
Representative for Connecticut’s 4th congressional district, 2009-2020
Holding, George
Representative for North Carolina’s 2nd congressional district, 2017-2020
Hollingsworth, Trey
Representative for Indiana’s 9th congressional district, 2017-2020
Horn, Kendra
Representative for Oklahoma’s 5th congressional district, 2019-2020
Horsford, Steven
Representative for Nevada’s 4th congressional district, 2019-2020
Houlahan, Chrissy
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Hoyer, Steny
Representative for Maryland’s 5th congressional district, 1981-2020
Hudson, Richard
Representative for North Carolina’s 8th congressional district, 2013-2020
Huffman, Jared
Representative for California’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Huizenga, Bill
Representative for Michigan’s 2nd congressional district, 2011-2020
Hurd, Will
Representative for Texas’s 23rd congressional district, 2015-2020
Jackson Lee, Sheila
Representative for Texas’s 18th congressional district, 1995-2020
Jayapal, Pramila
Representative for Washington’s 7th congressional district, 2017-2020
Jeffries, Hakeem
Representative for New York’s 8th congressional district, 2013-2020
Johnson, Bill
Representative for Ohio’s 6th congressional district, 2011-2020
Johnson, Dusty
Representative for South Dakota At Large, 2019-2020
Johnson, Eddie
Representative for Texas’s 30th congressional district, 1993-2020
Johnson, Henry “Hank”
Representative for Georgia’s 4th congressional district, 2007-2020
Johnson, Mike
Representative for Louisiana’s 4th congressional district, 2017-2020
Jordan, Jim
Representative for Ohio’s 4th congressional district, 2007-2020
Joyce, David
Representative for Ohio’s 14th congressional district, 2013-2020
Joyce, John
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 13th congressional district, 2019-2020
Kaptur, Marcy
Representative for Ohio’s 9th congressional district, 1983-2020
Katko, John
Representative for New York’s 24th congressional district, 2015-2020
Keating, William
Representative for Massachusetts’s 9th congressional district, 2013-2020
Keller, Fred
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 12th congressional district, 2019-2020
Kelly, Mike
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 16th congressional district, 2019-2020
Kelly, Robin
Representative for Illinois’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Kelly, Trent
Representative for Mississippi’s 1st congressional district, 2015-2020
Kennedy, Joseph
Representative for Massachusetts’s 4th congressional district, 2013-2020
Khanna, Ro
Representative for California’s 17th congressional district, 2017-2020
Kildee, Daniel
Representative for Michigan’s 5th congressional district, 2013-2020
Kilmer, Derek
Representative for Washington’s 6th congressional district, 2013-2020
Kim, Andy
Representative for New Jersey’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Kind, Ron
Representative for Wisconsin’s 3rd congressional district, 1997-2020
King, Peter “Pete”
Representative for New York’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
King, Steve
Representative for Iowa’s 4th congressional district, 2013-2020
Kinzinger, Adam
Representative for Illinois’s 16th congressional district, 2013-2020
Kirkpatrick, Ann
Representative for Arizona’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Krishnamoorthi, Raja
Representative for Illinois’s 8th congressional district, 2017-2020
Kuster, Ann
Representative for New Hampshire’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Kustoff, David
Representative for Tennessee’s 8th congressional district, 2017-2020
LaHood, Darin
Representative for Illinois’s 18th congressional district, 2015-2020
LaMalfa, Doug
Representative for California’s 1st congressional district, 2013-2020
Lamb, Conor
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 17th congressional district, 2019-2020
Lamborn, Doug
Representative for Colorado’s 5th congressional district, 2007-2020
Langevin, James “Jim”
Representative for Rhode Island’s 2nd congressional district, 2001-2020
Larsen, Rick
Representative for Washington’s 2nd congressional district, 2001-2020
Larson, John
Representative for Connecticut’s 1st congressional district, 1999-2020
Latta, Robert
Representative for Ohio’s 5th congressional district, 2007-2020
Lawrence, Brenda
Representative for Michigan’s 14th congressional district, 2015-2020
Lawson, Al
Representative for Florida’s 5th congressional district, 2017-2020
Lee, Barbara
Representative for California’s 13th congressional district, 2013-2020
Lee, Susie
Representative for Nevada’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Lesko, Debbie
Representative for Arizona’s 8th congressional district, 2018-2020
Levin, Andy
Representative for Michigan’s 9th congressional district, 2019-2020
Levin, Mike
Representative for California’s 49th congressional district, 2019-2020
Lewis, John
Representative for Georgia’s 5th congressional district, 1987-2020
Lieu, Ted
Representative for California’s 33rd congressional district, 2015-2020
Lipinski, Daniel
Representative for Illinois’s 3rd congressional district, 2005-2020
Loebsack, David
Representative for Iowa’s 2nd congressional district, 2007-2020
Lofgren, Zoe
Representative for California’s 19th congressional district, 2013-2020
Long, Billy
Representative for Missouri’s 7th congressional district, 2011-2020
Loudermilk, Barry
Representative for Georgia’s 11th congressional district, 2015-2020
Lowenthal, Alan
Representative for California’s 47th congressional district, 2013-2020
Lowey, Nita
Representative for New York’s 17th congressional district, 2013-2020
Lucas, Frank
Representative for Oklahoma’s 3rd congressional district, 2003-2020
Luetkemeyer, Blaine
Representative for Missouri’s 3rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Luján, Ben
Representative for New Mexico’s 3rd congressional district, 2009-2020
Luria, Elaine
Representative for Virginia’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Lynch, Stephen
Representative for Massachusetts’s 8th congressional district, 2013-2020
Malinowski, Tom
Representative for New Jersey’s 7th congressional district, 2019-2020
Maloney, Carolyn
Representative for New York’s 12th congressional district, 2013-2020
Maloney, Sean
Representative for New York’s 18th congressional district, 2013-2020
Marchant, Kenny
Representative for Texas’s 24th congressional district, 2005-2020
Marshall, Roger
Representative for Kansas’s 1st congressional district, 2017-2020
Massie, Thomas
Representative for Kentucky’s 4th congressional district, 2012-2020
Mast, Brian
Representative for Florida’s 18th congressional district, 2017-2020
Matsui, Doris
Representative for California’s 6th congressional district, 2013-2020
McAdams, Ben
Representative for Utah’s 4th congressional district, 2019-2020
McBath, Lucy
Representative for Georgia’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
McCarthy, Kevin
Representative for California’s 23rd congressional district, 2013-2020
McCaul, Michael
Representative for Texas’s 10th congressional district, 2005-2020
McClintock, Tom
Representative for California’s 4th congressional district, 2009-2020
McCollum, Betty
Representative for Minnesota’s 4th congressional district, 2001-2020
McEachin, Donald
Representative for Virginia’s 4th congressional district, 2017-2020
McGovern, James “Jim”
Representative for Massachusetts’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
McHenry, Patrick
Representative for North Carolina’s 10th congressional district, 2005-2020
McKinley, David
Representative for West Virginia’s 1st congressional district, 2011-2020
McMorris Rodgers, Cathy
Representative for Washington’s 5th congressional district, 2005-2020
McNerney, Jerry
Representative for California’s 9th congressional district, 2013-2020
Meeks, Gregory
Representative for New York’s 5th congressional district, 2013-2020
Meng, Grace
Representative for New York’s 6th congressional district, 2013-2020
Meuser, Daniel
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 9th congressional district, 2019-2020
Mfume, Kweisi
Representative for Maryland’s 7th congressional district, 2020-2020
Miller, Carol
Representative for West Virginia’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Mitchell, Paul
Representative for Michigan’s 10th congressional district, 2017-2020
Moolenaar, John
Representative for Michigan’s 4th congressional district, 2015-2020
Mooney, Alex
Representative for West Virginia’s 2nd congressional district, 2015-2020
Moore, Gwen
Representative for Wisconsin’s 4th congressional district, 2005-2020
Morelle, Joseph
Representative for New York’s 25th congressional district, 2018-2020
Moulton, Seth
Representative for Massachusetts’s 6th congressional district, 2015-2020
Mucarsel-Powell, Debbie
Representative for Florida’s 26th congressional district, 2019-2020
Mullin, Markwayne
Representative for Oklahoma’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Murphy, Gregory
Representative for North Carolina’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Murphy, Stephanie
Representative for Florida’s 7th congressional district, 2017-2020
Nadler, Jerrold
Representative for New York’s 10th congressional district, 2013-2020
Napolitano, Grace
Representative for California’s 32nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Neal, Richard
Representative for Massachusetts’s 1st congressional district, 2013-2020
Neguse, Joe
Representative for Colorado’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Newhouse, Dan
Representative for Washington’s 4th congressional district, 2015-2020
Norcross, Donald
Representative for New Jersey’s 1st congressional district, 2014-2020
Norman, Ralph
Representative for South Carolina’s 5th congressional district, 2017-2020
Norton, Eleanor
Representative for the District of Columbia, 1991-2020
Nunes, Devin
Representative for California’s 22nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Ocasio-Cortez, Alexandria
Representative for New York’s 14th congressional district, 2019-2020
Olson, Pete
Representative for Texas’s 22nd congressional district, 2009-2020
Omar, Ilhan
Representative for Minnesota’s 5th congressional district, 2019-2020
O’Halleran, Tom
Representative for Arizona’s 1st congressional district, 2017-2020
Palazzo, Steven
Representative for Mississippi’s 4th congressional district, 2011-2020
Pallone, Frank
Representative for New Jersey’s 6th congressional district, 1993-2020
Palmer, Gary
Representative for Alabama’s 6th congressional district, 2015-2020
Panetta, Jimmy
Representative for California’s 20th congressional district, 2017-2020
Pappas, Chris
Representative for New Hampshire’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Pascrell, Bill
Representative for New Jersey’s 9th congressional district, 2013-2020
Payne, Donald
Representative for New Jersey’s 10th congressional district, 2012-2020
Pelosi, Nancy
Representative for California’s 12th congressional district, 2013-2020
Pence, Greg
Representative for Indiana’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Perlmutter, Ed
Representative for Colorado’s 7th congressional district, 2007-2020
Perry, Scott
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 10th congressional district, 2019-2020
Peters, Scott
Representative for California’s 52nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Peterson, Collin
Representative for Minnesota’s 7th congressional district, 1991-2020
Phillips, Dean
Representative for Minnesota’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Pingree, Chellie
Representative for Maine’s 1st congressional district, 2009-2020
Plaskett, Stacey
Representative for the Virgin Islands, 2015-2020
Pocan, Mark
Representative for Wisconsin’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Porter, Katie
Representative for California’s 45th congressional district, 2019-2020
Posey, Bill
Representative for Florida’s 8th congressional district, 2013-2020
Pressley, Ayanna
Representative for Massachusetts’s 7th congressional district, 2019-2020
Price, David
Representative for North Carolina’s 4th congressional district, 1997-2020
Quigley, Mike
Representative for Illinois’s 5th congressional district, 2009-2020
Raskin, Jamie
Representative for Maryland’s 8th congressional district, 2017-2020
Ratcliffe, John
Representative for Texas’s 4th congressional district, 2015-2020
Reed, Tom
Representative for New York’s 23rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Reschenthaler, Guy
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 14th congressional district, 2019-2020
Rice, Kathleen
Representative for New York’s 4th congressional district, 2015-2020
Rice, Tom
Representative for South Carolina’s 7th congressional district, 2013-2020
Richmond, Cedric
Representative for Louisiana’s 2nd congressional district, 2011-2020
Riggleman, Denver
Representative for Virginia’s 5th congressional district, 2019-2020
Roby, Martha
Representative for Alabama’s 2nd congressional district, 2011-2020
Roe, David “Phil”
Representative for Tennessee’s 1st congressional district, 2009-2020
Rogers, Harold “Hal”
Representative for Kentucky’s 5th congressional district, 1981-2020
Rogers, Mike
Representative for Alabama’s 3rd congressional district, 2003-2020
Rooney, Francis
Representative for Florida’s 19th congressional district, 2017-2020
Rose, John
Representative for Tennessee’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Rose, Max
Representative for New York’s 11th congressional district, 2019-2020
Rouda, Harley
Representative for California’s 48th congressional district, 2019-2020
Rouzer, David
Representative for North Carolina’s 7th congressional district, 2015-2020
Roy, Chip
Representative for Texas’s 21st congressional district, 2019-2020
Roybal-Allard, Lucille
Representative for California’s 40th congressional district, 2013-2020
Ruiz, Raul
Representative for California’s 36th congressional district, 2013-2020
Ruppersberger, A. Dutch
Representative for Maryland’s 2nd congressional district, 2003-2020
Rush, Bobby
Representative for Illinois’s 1st congressional district, 1993-2020
Rutherford, John
Representative for Florida’s 4th congressional district, 2017-2020
Ryan, Tim
Representative for Ohio’s 13th congressional district, 2013-2020
Sablan, Gregorio
Representative for the Northern Mariana Islands, 2009-2020
San Nicolas, Michael
Representative for Guam, 2019-2020
Sarbanes, John
Representative for Maryland’s 3rd congressional district, 2007-2020
Scalise, Steve
Representative for Louisiana’s 1st congressional district, 2008-2020
Scanlon, Mary
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 5th congressional district, 2019-2020
Schakowsky, Janice “Jan”
Representative for Illinois’s 9th congressional district, 1999-2020
Schiff, Adam
Representative for California’s 28th congressional district, 2013-2020
Schneider, Bradley
Representative for Illinois’s 10th congressional district, 2017-2020
Schrader, Kurt
Representative for Oregon’s 5th congressional district, 2009-2020
Schrier, Kim
Representative for Washington’s 8th congressional district, 2019-2020
Schweikert, David
Representative for Arizona’s 6th congressional district, 2013-2020
Scott, Austin
Representative for Georgia’s 8th congressional district, 2011-2020
Scott, David
Representative for Georgia’s 13th congressional district, 2003-2020
Scott, Robert “Bobby”
Representative for Virginia’s 3rd congressional district, 1993-2020
Sensenbrenner, James
Representative for Wisconsin’s 5th congressional district, 2003-2020
Serrano, José
Representative for New York’s 15th congressional district, 2013-2020
Sewell, Terri
Representative for Alabama’s 7th congressional district, 2011-2020
Shalala, Donna
Representative for Florida’s 27th congressional district, 2019-2020
Sherman, Brad
Representative for California’s 30th congressional district, 2013-2020
Sherrill, Mikie
Representative for New Jersey’s 11th congressional district, 2019-2020
Shimkus, John
Representative for Illinois’s 15th congressional district, 2013-2020
Simpson, Michael “Mike”
Representative for Idaho’s 2nd congressional district, 1999-2020
Sires, Albio
Representative for New Jersey’s 8th congressional district, 2013-2020
Slotkin, Elissa
Representative for Michigan’s 8th congressional district, 2019-2020
Smith, Adam
Representative for Washington’s 9th congressional district, 1997-2020
Smith, Adrian
Representative for Nebraska’s 3rd congressional district, 2007-2020
Smith, Christopher “Chris”
Representative for New Jersey’s 4th congressional district, 1981-2020
Smith, Jason
Representative for Missouri’s 8th congressional district, 2013-2020
Smucker, Lloyd
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 11th congressional district, 2019-2020
Soto, Darren
Representative for Florida’s 9th congressional district, 2017-2020
Spanberger, Abigail
Representative for Virginia’s 7th congressional district, 2019-2020
Spano, Ross
Representative for Florida’s 15th congressional district, 2019-2020
Speier, Jackie
Representative for California’s 14th congressional district, 2013-2020
Stanton, Greg
Representative for Arizona’s 9th congressional district, 2019-2020
Stauber, Pete
Representative for Minnesota’s 8th congressional district, 2019-2020
Stefanik, Elise
Representative for New York’s 21st congressional district, 2015-2020
Steil, Bryan
Representative for Wisconsin’s 1st congressional district, 2019-2020
Steube, Gregory
Representative for Florida’s 17th congressional district, 2019-2020
Stevens, Haley
Representative for Michigan’s 11th congressional district, 2019-2020
Stewart, Chris
Representative for Utah’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Stivers, Steve
Representative for Ohio’s 15th congressional district, 2011-2020
Suozzi, Thomas
Representative for New York’s 3rd congressional district, 2017-2020
Swalwell, Eric
Representative for California’s 15th congressional district, 2013-2020
Sánchez, Linda
Representative for California’s 38th congressional district, 2013-2020
Takano, Mark
Representative for California’s 41st congressional district, 2013-2020
Taylor, Van
Representative for Texas’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Thompson, Bennie
Representative for Mississippi’s 2nd congressional district, 1993-2020
Thompson, Glenn
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 15th congressional district, 2019-2020
Thompson, Mike
Representative for California’s 5th congressional district, 2013-2020
Thornberry, Mac
Representative for Texas’s 13th congressional district, 1995-2020
Tiffany, Thomas
Representative for Wisconsin’s 7th congressional district, 2020-2020
Timmons, William
Representative for South Carolina’s 4th congressional district, 2019-2020
Tipton, Scott
Representative for Colorado’s 3rd congressional district, 2011-2020
Titus, Dina
Representative for Nevada’s 1st congressional district, 2013-2020
Tlaib, Rashida
Representative for Michigan’s 13th congressional district, 2019-2020
Tonko, Paul
Representative for New York’s 20th congressional district, 2013-2020
Torres Small, Xochitl
Representative for New Mexico’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Norma Torres CA35
Torres, Norma
Representative for California’s 35th congressional district, 2015-2020
Trahan, Lori
Representative for Massachusetts’s 3rd congressional district, 2019-2020
Trone, David
Representative for Maryland’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Turner, Michael
Representative for Ohio’s 10th congressional district, 2013-2020
Underwood, Lauren
Representative for Illinois’s 14th congressional district, 2019-2020
Upton, Fred
Representative for Michigan’s 6th congressional district, 1993-2020
Van Drew, Jefferson
Representative for New Jersey’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Vargas, Juan
Representative for California’s 51st congressional district, 2013-2020
Veasey, Marc
Representative for Texas’s 33rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Vela, Filemon
Representative for Texas’s 34th congressional district, 2013-2020
Velázquez, Nydia
Representative for New York’s 7th congressional district, 2013-2020
Visclosky, Peter
Representative for Indiana’s 1st congressional district, 1985-2020
Wagner, Ann
Representative for Missouri’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Walberg, Tim
Representative for Michigan’s 7th congressional district, 2011-2020
Walden, Greg
Representative for Oregon’s 2nd congressional district, 1999-2020
Walker, Mark
Representative for North Carolina’s 6th congressional district, 2015-2020
Walorski, Jackie
Representative for Indiana’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Waltz, Michael
Representative for Florida’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Wasserman Schultz, Debbie
Representative for Florida’s 23rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Waters, Maxine
Representative for California’s 43rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Watkins, Steven
Representative for Kansas’s 2nd congressional district, 2019-2020
Watson Coleman, Bonnie
Representative for New Jersey’s 12th congressional district, 2015-2020
Weber, Randy
Representative for Texas’s 14th congressional district, 2013-2020
Webster, Daniel
Representative for Florida’s 11th congressional district, 2017-2020
Welch, Peter
Representative for Vermont At Large, 2007-2020
Wenstrup, Brad
Representative for Ohio’s 2nd congressional district, 2013-2020
Westerman, Bruce
Representative for Arkansas’s 4th congressional district, 2015-2020
Wexton, Jennifer
Representative for Virginia’s 10th congressional district, 2019-2020
Wild, Susan
Representative for Pennsylvania’s 7th congressional district, 2019-2020
Williams, Roger
Representative for Texas’s 25th congressional district, 2013-2020
Wilson, Frederica
Representative for Florida’s 24th congressional district, 2013-2020
Wilson, Joe
Representative for South Carolina’s 2nd congressional district, 2001-2020
Wittman, Robert
Representative for Virginia’s 1st congressional district, 2007-2020
Womack, Steve
Representative for Arkansas’s 3rd congressional district, 2011-2020
Woodall, Rob
Representative for Georgia’s 7th congressional district, 2011-2020
Wright, Ron
Representative for Texas’s 6th congressional district, 2019-2020
Yarmuth, John
Representative for Kentucky’s 3rd congressional district, 2007-2020
Yoho, Ted
Representative for Florida’s 3rd congressional district, 2013-2020
Young, Don
Representative for Alaska At Large, 1973-2020
Zeldin, Lee
Representative for New York’s 1st congressional district, 2015-2020

To be fair, the conspirators are punishing themselves, as well. They think the only way to oust the president is to crash the economy and have Americans vote him out of office. Ordinary Americans might never learn what the president did or didn’t do because he can hide behind executive privilege whenever his embattled administration is investigated for anything. Also, he and his attorney general are besties on the important issues.

The following quote from Bertrand Russell can never be repeated too often: “There is something feeble and a little contemptible about a man who cannot face the perils of life without the help of comfortable myths. Almost inevitably some part of him is aware that they are myths and that he believes them only because they are comforting. But he dare not face this thought! Moreover, since he is aware, however dimly, that his opinions are not rational, he becomes furious when they are disputed.”

This COVID campaign has had a cloak of phoniness on it from the start. True, over time, myths and misinformation have suffused all major historical events. However, electronic files are slowly replacing paper, so the recording of the institutional memory of the world can be modified with a few keystrokes all the time. Propagandists from each side are engaging in a constant battle (like “Spy vs. Spy” in Mad Magazine) to be the most recent editors of as many online information sources as possible.

Another aspect of the opinion war is that it is difficult to trust anyone who is being paid to say what they are saying. Of course, they want to keep their jobs so they sometimes (or always) say things they don’t actually themselves believe.

But– no need to get all stressed out like Barry McGuire in the song, “Eve of Destruction”– because this COVID crisis is not entirely unprecedented.

WARNING: SPOILER (OR RATHER, HISTORY) ALERT

During president Dwight Eisenhower’s two terms– most of the 1950’s– Americans were living the American Dream. They were enjoying peace and prosperity. Really? Peace and prosperity?

It might be recalled that it was the McCarthy Era! Anyone who worked in communications-related jobs or in Hollywood, sooner or later, became the victim of ideological persecution. Everyone was forced to take the Loyalty Oath.

Never mind the fact that minorities and foreigners were subjected to physical persecution, the likes of which this whole nation is currently suffering. Feel better now?

Read Fathi’s book to learn of the author’s fate, every detail of his life up until then, and his family’s diaspora.

Forty Autumns

The Book of the Week is “Forty Autumns, A Family’s Story of Courage and Survival On Both Sides of the Berlin Wall” by Nina Willner, published in 2016.

The author was the daughter of an East German refugee named Hannah. After WWII, Hannah’s family residence happened to be located in Schwaneberg, in East Germany. The area was liberated by Americans, but was taken over by the Soviets in short order. Hannah’s father was the headmaster of the local school. He was forced to teach Communism to his students.

In 1948, at twenty years old, Hannah, the second oldest in her immediate family (which would eventually consist of nine children), risked getting shot or imprisoned in fleeing to West Germany. The Soviets charged such people with treason– she was young and healthy and refused to help rebuild East Germany.

East Germany indoctrinated the children with their Communist youth groups in which they recited a loyalty oath, sang jingoistic songs, had film-viewings and acted in plays. The children were rewarded for being snitches on their own immediate families, neighbors, friends, teachers– whoever said anything negative about the State. Prison terms awaited the tattled-on.

This prompted a super-serious case of brain-drain and flight of capital and a labor force from East Germany to West Germany. In spring 1953, tensions of the oppressed boiled over. Soviet tanks rolled in, leaving hundreds dead. By the mid-1950’s, the government owned the media, which spewed positive propaganda about itself, and negative about any place other than Soviet-controlled territories.

Initially, the Berlin Wall consisted of the following: concrete that was twelve feet high and one to three feet thick; a slippery, rounded top; wire mesh; electric signal fencing; barbed wire; electric alarms; searchlights; trenches; raked sand to reveal escapees’ footsteps; floodlights; tripwires; booby-traps; attack dogs; not to mention wooden watchtowers. And armed guards, too.

Just for good measure, in the mid-1970’s, the Wall was fortified with metal spikes, nail beds, fences with touch-sensitive alarms and bullet-dischargers, concrete watchtowers, tripwires that set off signal flares; concrete barriers, electrified fences, and additional attack dogs.

Unsurprisingly, by then, countless people had been shot and killed trying to get past the Wall. Their murderers were rewarded with promotions and awards ceremonies. East German government officials enjoyed luxury housing in the Wanderlitz Forest Settlement (equivalent to a corporate village full of dachas) and drove Volvos.

East Germany’s leader decided to boost national pride by investing hundreds of millions of dollars in sports research and sports medicine to churn out the best Olympic athletes. And the nation did so into the 1980’s.

Unfortunately, by the end of the 1970’s, the country was $10 billion in debt to West Germany. It got so desperate to feed its people, it awarded plots of land to individual families so they could grow their own food. It was an un-Communist move– taking power and property away from the State. But after about thirty years, the chickens were coming home to roost under the East German brand of socialism.

In modern times, in the West, it is possible to be capitalistic in one’s economic thinking, and be mildly Soviet in one’s political thinking.

Read the book to learn the fates of the different family members, and how their lives changed during and after the Cold War.

Child of the Ghetto / The Three of Us

As is well known, WWII did a number on Italy. Here are two books that described the experiences of females during and after the war.

The First Book of the Week is “Child of the Ghetto, Coming of Age in Fascist Italy: A Memoir 1926-1946” by Edda Servi Machlin, published in 1995.

Born in February 1926 in a small village outside Rome, the author was named Edda, after Mussolini’s daughter. Her father was the community’s rabbi. The family was actually anti-fascist, but used her name as a cover for avoiding trouble. The Italian government began its abusive treatment of Jews starting in the late summer of 1938. Jewish teachers and public-school employees were fired.

Since the author was no longer allowed to get an education, she spent her adolescence up until her late teens in real-world job training, as a maid, bookkeeper and seamstress. Signage in retail outlets’ windows stated, “This is an Aryan-race store.” Everyone was required to show ID cards that stated his or her religion.

Mid-July 1943 saw a change in Italy’s government but not in its war alliances, pro-Fascism bent, or treatment of Jews. Even though in September it pledged to stop fighting against the Allies. The author’s two older brothers went to hide in the woods to avoid conscription. Because they were Jews, they were denied admittance to an anti-Fascist youth group.

According to the author, in October 1943, the Germans who were sociopathic sadists with weaponry, descended on Rome in the middle of the night to abduct via truck, more than three thousand Jews. Luckily, in the next two months, when a roundup began in neighboring regions, the author, her brothers, and younger sister had been on the run in an area spanning hundreds of miles of countryside around Tuscany, Umbria, Lazio, etc., hiding in various homes of benevolent farmers willing to risk their lives. Her parents and younger brother, however, were taken away.

The author heard “through the grapevine” that two American soldiers had bailed out of a warplane and parachuted into her village. That was exciting, because she had been rooting for the Allies all along. Her mentality was, “America, the mythical country of our childhood dreams, was so far away… And Lello [her older brother] had met two of her children! We were enthralled.”

Read the book to learn the fate of the author’s family members, her prewar existence, her adventures in the forests and farmyards during the war, and of her later endeavors.

The Second Book of the Week is “The Three of Us” by Marisa Giardina, published in 2012. This is the suspenseful, depressing story of a female whose girlhood ended before she turned three years old, due to WWII.

The author, her mother and older sister fled on a ship bound for Italy from their native Libya with hardly more than the clothes on their backs. They left her father and her two older brothers behind. The goal in their travels was to reach Fiuggi, where her grandfather was being held as a prisoner of war.

They spent an inordinate amount of time in a bomb shelter and their diet consisted of dried bread crumbs when they could get them. As their situation worsened, refugees such as they, resorted to prostitution, thefts of crops from farms, black-market trading, and illegally occupying abandoned, rubble-strewn buildings, among other tactics to stay alive.

“Italy was in chaos after the war and the Italians lost their compassion for their fellow men.” Non-governmental organizations such as the Red Cross and CARE handed out food and sweaters, which were acquired after days of waiting in a queue.

Read the book to learn more about the countless hardships endured by the author, and her incredible will to live, considering her circumstances.