Posts

Healing America: Waging Optimism

If you were sick and your physician said you had to take urgent action to remain alive, would you sit around and debate it? Not if you wanted to get well. If I were your doctor I’ll tell you to start by waging optimism and taking action! 

Well, here we are, at the conclusion of this Healing American series. The time for debate is over. The next government of the United States will be elected in less than 400 days. This is the time for action. 

In part one of this Healing America series, we recognized the urgency and illness

In part two, we diagnosed the cause

In part three, we decided to become a miracle cure.

In part four, we set a course for bold action, with America 2.0. 

So, how do we get from where we are today, a sick and dying nation embroiled in political scandal and ineffective government to where we will be upon signing an America 2.0 constitution as soon as possible? 

We start WAGING OPTIMISM and taking action. 

  • We build a movement together. Click here now to take our pledge and get started.
  • We call all justice-hearted Americans mobilize in mass, peaceful, non-violent demonstrations between now and Constitution Day.
  • We make our presence felt at the Democratic and Republic Conventions when the candidates for the President are formally chosen.
  • We demand candidates that will support our America 2.0 Constitution.

Now, it’s time for action.

waging optimism

Who am I to call you to action?

I’m a doctor and the father of five sons.

I am committed to ensuring that my family and all of your families have the opportunity to pursue the American ideal of liberty and justice for all.

My work for the last 30 years has been to hold the United States government accountable. I’ve been waging justice for all Americans and I want you to join me.

I’m an optimist to the core. I’m Waging Optimism now because I’ve seen what happens when people come together, like the time we changed the course of the AIDS epidemic. Like the Climate Justice movement that is making a huge push to save our planet.

On Martin Luther King’s birthday earlier this year, I launched Build A Movement 2020 (#BAM2020) to spark a patriotic revolutionary political movement. The pillars of BAM2020 can be seen here. (Link to blog with pillars). 

I commit my life to healing America and I know we can do it. 

But who I am isn’t as important who you are. 

Will you be the person who at this moment in history took bold action to demand life, liberty and justice for all? 

Will you wage optimism with me? 

Let Justice Ring!

Healing America: We’re the Miracle

On a sunny warm Sunday in April 2000, my father-in-law, Gerald Cohen, suffered a massive heart attack, his second. He needed a miracle.

He was on his way to a family celebration.

He never made it.

I stood in silent shock as a medical evacuation helicopter landed at the hospital, two medics bundled him into the chopper, and they flew off.

I was dumbstruck by the crazy turn of events.

His doctors quickly determined that his heart was so damaged that his only chance of survival was a heart transplant — he had just days or hours to live.

As we all were mentally preparing to say goodbye, unexpectedly, a miracle occurred.

A donor was identified.

In the nick of time, Dad received a new heart.

He lived another 11 happy years.

Since that day almost twenty years ago, I believe in miracles.

Do you? 

Ready for the miracle

What we need to do to save America is like that heart transplant my father-in-law received. Part miracle, part action. As this series is showing, we need – and can do—both. 

In part one of this Healing America series, we recognized the urgency and illness

In pat two, we diagnosed the cause

Now we must prepare a plan of action. The action starts with thinking big and committing to do whatever it takes to ensure that the America we’ve been promised thrives for years to come. 

While our American ideals are on the precipice of imminent death, I believe that we can heal the greed disease that is killing the “heart” of the United States of America.

It’s no longer workable to stand by and hope that the problem will magically be fixed by others.

It won’t.

Urgent and lifesaving action is needed by justice-hearted Americans to liberate our fellow citizens from the shackles of injustice. We can create an inclusive healing movement where all Americans can learn to live peacefully together now and for future generations.

miracle

We’re the miracle

A miracle is required to save the heart of America, yes. But we’re the miracle! 

President Abraham Lincoln said it best: “I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis.”

We have the opportunity today to unleash our individual valor and our collective courage to reclaim, restore, and renew American ideals — so that we and future generations can fulfill on the promise of our unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Can we see through the clouds of complacency?

Can we awaken ourselves to the possibility of waging justice to create a more perfect Union?

Can we realize the dream of the ages to usher in a more just and peaceful world for our children?

Can we help all Americans cast off their greed intoxication?

Can we demolish the golden calf of falsehoods, avarice, lies, and deception?

We must take back our government so that we can live in balance with the Earth and each and every one of us has a fair chance to create a winning life.

We can start to cure America today, but only if come together, only if we truly Build a Movement in 2020 that can’t be ignored. 

The time for bold action to radically and rapidly dismantle injustice is now! The first steps are the easiest, a stand for justice that takes a couple of clicks: 

  1. Sign the BAM2020 pledge to demand a government that works for all
  2. Share your pledge with others on social media and invite them to do the same.

Someday you’ll tell your kids you helped save America.

Healing America: Greed is the Disease

Remember Scrooge? The story of the crushing misery brought to all by the greed of one powerful man remains within the American culture. It has been made and remade in ways to many to count. 

A story with a bitter lesson of greed, how ironic that it shown only during the holiday season. 

Why? 

Perhaps, because of the ending, the one happy part of the story, shows what happens when the disease of greed can be cured.

This lesson is relevant because I believe, the disease that is killing America is the disease of greed. 

 

greed

The deadly virus of greed

I’m a physician. It has long been my job to diagnose based on facts in front of me. And I’m convinced that despite all the symptoms of our failing government, the disease runs deeper. 

Greed is a deadly virus that is infecting and destroying American ideals and the promise of our collective future.

Let’s diagnosis this together: 

  • Three percent of the U.S. population has a net worth of one million dollars or more. As one newspaper headline put it, we have more millionaires in America than Greece has people.
  • At the same time, some 40 million Americans, maybe more, live below the poverty line.
  • More and more young people in America do not want to start families because of economic insecurity and their justified fears about the unaddressed climate emergency. Many young people are crippled by huge amounts of school debt. Others feel they can’t afford the basics.

While working as a physician in all parts of our country, I have been at the front lines of inner-city and rural, poverty and injustice — which only seems to worsen now as millions remain suffering under the shackles of systemic poverty.

Too many Americans are living their lives soaking in a toxic bath of racial, economic, social, gender and environmental injustice — at hands of the greed disease.

A system of greed run amok

I would guess many of our greatest leaders from the past, the faces on Mount Rushmore, or great statesmen of Congress, social leaders like Susan B. Anthony and Martin Luther King, Jr. would recognize the current state of our government has become. 

All of these leaders expected the government to lead, to act. 

Yet listen to just one of the latest congressional leaders, Francis Rooney, who recently announced his retirement:

“This is kind of a frustrating job for me,” he added. “I come from a world of actions, decisions, putting your money down and seeing what happens. This is a world of talk.”

It’s a phrase we’ve heard more and more in the past decade, because we elect to take action for us are working in a political system run amok with personal interests.

Some greedy business leaders are putting profits over people, and some of our politicians care more about their own self-aggrandizement than they do about their constituents.

While headlines seem to focus on the latest silly twitter spats, a real deadly virus of greed is left unchecked in America.

A dangerous greed force has grabbed the hearts and minds of so many of our leaders.

Instead of working for us and with us, they are bound and bought out by the greed machine.

What happened to “By the people for the people?” It’s become, “By the greedy, for the greedy.”

Now, I admit, this may not feel like “breaking news,” but what are we doing to defeat the deadly virus of greed? Our country will no more live with greed unchecked than a cancer patient will live if the tumor goes untreated.

Frankly, I believe that greed is killing our nation.

Our leaders who are caught in the greed machine can’t save us.

That’s our job. That’s why we’re building a movement in 2020. That’s why we need you to help us take action, which you can start today just by adding your name to this pledge (Link to Pledge Campaign). 

If you want a country by the people, for the people, you must act. Together we can save our nation.

Healing America: The Heart of America is Dying

The heart of America is dying!

As a physician, I know well when I see sickness. It invades every aspect of the person. It consumes everything, which may be why we so often hear the phrase, “health and vitality.” Without health, vitality is impossible.

Our country is diseased because our government is diseased. The heart of America is clogged. Our government is like the heart of the country, and we are desperately in need of a heart transplant.

Our diseased government affects every aspect of our civic lives. We are all rattled by the rancor and failure of our government.

America promises liberty and justice for all.

But our leaders are not living up to that pledge.

When we were healthy

Over the past year, I’ve found myself dreaming about the extraordinary drama of the fall of 1787, 232 years ago.

Members of the Constitutional Convention debated, wrote, and signed the Constitution, proposing an entirely new form of government.

It’s awe-inspiring to imagine the individuals from across the 13 colonies — from Massachusetts to North Carolina — who came together in Philadelphia, my hometown. They spawned a valorous miracle: the birth of the American dream, a vision to ensure liberty and justice for all.

Our leaders spawned a brilliant system of government that created the vitality of America to grow and emerge into a leading nation and symbol of democracy (and stability!) for people everywhere. 

But it wasn’t perfect. Not even close. 

Unfortunately, the leaders of that time did not represent all of the people.

The drafters of our first Constitution were all white and all male.

Many were landowners, and many were slaveowners.

As well-intentioned as they may have been, the Constitutional Order of the last 232 years was designed to protect their greedy personal wealth and privilege, while aggressively subjugating others.

The truth is, as path-breaking as our Constitution was, inherent in its design is a systematic obstruction of the promise of liberty and justice for all.

Think about that. The very thing our government was designed to create, is blocked. 

Which might explain why the sickness of our country is now a threat to our country. The disease has gone untreated too long to where it can no longer be avoided.

Call 9-1-1 for America

When a patient is in critical condition, doctors don’t sit around and debate. They diagnose, they prepare a course for healing, and they execute it. They take action.

Which is exactly what we need the American people must do now. We must take action

Our founders took an oath to uphold and defend the United States Constitution. The preamble states:

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessing of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”

Today’s leaders are failing America. They’re not upholding their pledge. 

The heart of democracy is dying.

The American promise — of liberty and justice for all — is in jeopardy.

This is an urgent existential threat to our way of life and the potential for future generations to flourish under American ideals.

Over the course of the next few blogs, we will diagnosis the sickness, create a plan for healing and join together to execute it. I’ve been waging justice for thirty years and I know together we can make a difference. We can save America. 

Because liberty and justice for all must now really be, for all.