With the Trump administration on its way out, what happens with the BLM movement?

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Photo: Nicole Baster/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

The Black Lives Matter movement experienced a powerful resurgence during the spring and summer of 2020 due, in large part, to the social and political elements that created a perfect storm. A nationwide quarantine, rising unemployment, a hated leader, and the killing of George Floyd were catalysts for the largest series of protests and calls to activism for a movement that began around 2013. With over 450 major protests held across the United States as well as abroad, BLM received unprecedented media attention, public support, and even corporate recognition.

In any social and political movement, the most difficult element to sustain is momentum. As elated as the public is to move on from the Trump presidency, the future of the BLM movement is questionable. This is not because the message became less relevant, but because movements are largely successful when they are in opposition to contrarian forces. …


How investing in NASA and space exploration provides answers to questions we don’t even know to ask

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(Photo: Greg Rakozy/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0)

On Sunday, November 15, 2020, the four-man crew of the Space X Crew Dragon Capsule was launched into orbit and docked at the International Space Station. The successful launch and docking of the Space X vehicle promises to usher in a new era of space exploration after the retirement of NASA’s shuttle program in 2011.

As the world is battling another spike of COVID-19 cases, with cities once more shutting down, space exploration may seem like a fever dream. …


How the instant gratification culture is holding people back

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Photo: Absolut Vision/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

Growing up as an immigrant, investing and portfolio management was not a part of my upbringing. A college degree and a lifetime of work were supposed to be sufficient to build a nest-egg to retire on. In high school, I took a finance class where I learned such concepts as compound interest and buying low/selling high, however, even then, the access to the stock market was largely through brokerage firms that carried fees per trade.

With the advent of Robinhood and the elimination of transaction fees from other retail brokers, putting money in the market is a thumb swipe away. Through this accessibility, an entire generation of day-traders was created. While amateur investors chase the dream of turning thousands into millions, the average investor is more likely to lose their money than beat the market. …


Use these five methods to champion your ideas and be more confident in discourse

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Photo: Miguel Henriques/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

Everybody has an opinion and the prevalence of social media makes it inevitable that you will be confronted with an endless array of self-proclaimed experts, debating fanatics, and just plain old contrarians. Even a family dinner table is a four-cornered ring with grandma facing off with your uncle about the latest Trump Tweet.

My experience as an attorney has taught me that an aggressive approach to argumentation is not always necessary, especially outside of the courtroom. …


For a leader that made “winning” the bedrock of his persona, Trump never acted like one

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Photo: Clay Banks/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

When one considers the qualities that a leader possesses, words like integrity, fortitude, and strength come to mind. During the course of his presidency, Trump has offered glimpses into his narcissistic persona through Twitter exchanges and rally speeches. Despite the falsehoods, contradictions, and blatant lies, Trump has been able to keep his head up and back straight while peddling his snake oil.

Throughout this election, as the votes slowly stacked against him, Trump took off the mask of false confidence and revealed a coward. He has attacked the election process, falsely claimed victory, demanded a stop to the counting of votes, and threatened mass litigation. …


A Poem

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Photo: Chris Buckwald/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

The thunder cracks and mothers weep
And crimson rivers paint the tar
We eat ourselves while grey heads reap
In marble towers from afar

When we were young, we laid in grass
My finger tracing distant light
The world on pause as evenings pass
Our lives untouched by fear and spite

The warmth of summer left my face
In concrete tunnels filled with soot
Six pounds of ash packed in a vase
Makes all our best intentions moot


A Poem

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Photo: Johannes Plenio/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

I steal the threads of destined fate
Entwined with souls in silvered light
My Master’s hands are careless, late
Yet mine are nimble, true, and sleight

I weave a cloth of purest form
So songs of home can bring me through
The fractured skies and gales that swarm
My vessel sailing to the new

I left my harbor, friends, and kin
To seize the treasures beyond reach
Cold ocean spray may sting my skin
But, there are lessons it can teach

I lived a life with love and verse
Played in the sun and braved the rain
Some moments touched me like a curse
The gentle mercies cured the…


How the government can take the property of innocent people and why our laws permit it

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Photo: Jason Pofahl/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

Civil forfeiture is a legal form of piracy, where the state and federal policing agencies can take your money and property without any charges being filed or arrests being made. It is a remnant of the colonial taxation and seizure powers of the Crown, receiving unprecedented power during the War on Drugs. The net income for state and federal policing agencies is measured in billions, all of which stems from seizing assets from Americans.

A weapon intended against criminal enterprises, civil forfeiture has left a trail of innocent victims since inception. In particular, the impact is most felt by minorities and the economically disadvantaged as they are most likely to reside in areas with a higher number of police searches and are the least likely to have the economic means to fight unjust seizures. …


A Poem

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Photo: Noah Silliman/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0

I sit and dream, my gaze transfixed
With idle hands, in thoughts, I’m lost
Never acknowledging the cost
Of tolls of bridges where I stalled
The lives around me moving on

Life’s ticking pace does run too fast
Who’s grinding screech of turning gears
Lacking remorse, counting my years
Forever claiming every pulse
Of beating heart and measured breath

Passing beneath the numbing waves
The life I yearned but lived without
Slipped through my clammy hands of doubt
Did float away through salty brine
To murky darkness, deep and cold

And when I fall to earthly rest
My life, a carving scratched in stone
A granite slab that stands alone
Marking the passage of the time
That I spent living in my mind


Finding purpose, kindness, and meaning without God

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(Photo: Aaron Burden/Unsplash/CC BY-SA 4.0)

I grew up in a fairly secular household. While my parents and grandparents had their own ideas about religion and God, the topic was never discussed in our house. There was never a moment in my childhood when my parents approached me about faith. I was never instructed on the sermons or rituals of Judaism (mother’s family) or Christianity (father’s family). I suspect that such topics were out of place in the Soviet Union, especially for the Jewish population.

After coming to America, many of my family members attended synagogue for the first time. In fact, I have extended family that became practicing Orthodox Jews. My immediate family, however, was barely religious. The extent of my participation in Judaism was the Shabbat service on Fridays for several years. Over time, I limited my attendance to just the holy holidays, and, eventually, I ceased attending service altogether. …

About

Brian Sansom

An attorney by trade, a writer at heart. I sincerely believe in the power of words and ideas. Hoping to make my own meaningful contribution.

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