Afghanistan, RIP- Thoughts about Two Wars

This past weekend, 8/15/2021, Afghanistan fell to the Taliban.  Much is being made about the parallels between the fall of South Vietnam on April 30, 1975, and the events in Kabul yesterday.

Here is a personal parallel.  I served for two tours as an Army helicopter pilot in South Vietnam.  More recently, my son served for two tours as an Army helicopter pilot in Afghanistan.  Today, both of us remember our Army friends who never came home or who came home with grievous injuries that have affected them for the rest of their lives.

And it is the same for several thousand Alameda County veterans who served in Afghanistan during the past twenty years.  Their service and sacrifice have been rendered meaningless in a matter of a few days.

And another parallel:  The collapse of South Vietnam began in August 1974 when a Democrat controlled congress voted to stop all assistance to the country.  By the end of the year North Vietnam began a conventional invasion of South Vietnam.  The collapse of Afghanistan began the day President Biden announced all US forces would leave the country by the end of this month.

It gets much worse.  The collapse of Kabul has encouraged our enemies once again.  One day what we faced in Afghanistan and Iraq will seem insignificant in comparison to what we will face.  What will we do?

- Doug Miller, ACRP Central Committee

CAGOP votes no formal endorsement - THREE straw poll winners

On 8/7, CAGOP delegates voted 90% to not make a formal endorsement out of 753 votes.  The chairwoman confirmed four candidates met the prescreening of 200 supporting delegates.   Delegates pre-voted for as many as desired among the Republican candidates.  The counts of the top four were not provided.  The top four in alphabetical order are:

Larry Elder 
Kevin Faulconer
Kevin Kiley 
Doug Ose            Had Heart Attack on 8/15 and withdrew from race on 8/17

- Harry Briley, AD16 Chair for Central Committee

HOT ACRP TOPIC: Public Education and Masks in Schools

If you are like me, every morning when I turn on the news, there is another story about parents gathering at school board meetings across the country to protest the addition of topics like Critical Race Theory, the 1619 Project, and more graphic sex education information. Most recently, parents are also protesting the requirement that masks be worn in school.

Yesterday the San Ramon Valley Unified School District held its first meeting of the new school year. About 75 visitors attended the meeting to deliver a single message: Let parents decide whether their children should wear masks to school.

Two local TV stations ran stories last night. The TV coverage is surprisingly wide. As we walked out of the meeting yesterday, one of the reporters asked us if we supported mask mandates in schools. She told us she had been unable to find anyone to interview who supported continued mask mandates. Those news clips can be found here:

I joined their efforts this morning. I recommend that the Alameda County Republican Party organize a county wide effort to learn about school curriculum and school policies in our local schools.

There are 18 public school districts in Alameda County. About 10 ACRP members and volunteers can collect important information on topics such as critical racial theory and mask policy and let voters know. We could help organize protests at school board meetings like the meeting yesterday in Danville.

We have recruited five volunteers for this new ACRP committee. Will you help us? Please let me know as soon as possible. We can meet, organize and make plans through Zoom.

Please contact me!

Doug Miller, Vice Chairman of the Republican Party of Alameda County, 925.998.9905

Winning in California!

Don't miss this event! Meet your fellow Republicans at a beautiful location in the East Bay hills. Enjoy hearing from speakers who have won elections in California, and have a lot of wisdom to share with us.

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Memorial Day 2021

This weekend we honor and remember those who gave their lives in service to our nation.  Memorial Day began just after the Civil War when families decorated the graves of soldiers from both sides of the conflict.  About 620,000 soldiers died while serving during the Civil War.  The population of the United States was about one tenth of what it is today.  Thus, in terms of today’s population, that is the equivalent of more than six million deaths.

About ten years ago, Gold Star mother Diane Layfield explained to me why, year after year, she would painfully recount the story of her son’s valiant sacrifice.  She told me about an old saying.  “Warriors die twice.  Once on the battlefield and once again when they are finally forgotten.” As we anticipate a joyous summer, let us pause to remember our blessings especially those borne by the ultimate sacrifice of our service members.

Lance Corporal Travis Layfield was killed on April 6, 2004 while serving with the United States Marine Corps in Iraq.

- Douglas Miller, Central Committee Member, AD16

Special Election AD 18 - 6/29/2021

Stephen Slauson is running for State Assembly Member in AD18 in the Special Election in June (Tuesday 6/29/2021).   He is the ONLY Republican running against six Democrats.   This is one of those rare instances where a Republican has a chance to succeed.  The ACGOP has not yet endorsed him (I just found out today myself).   So, this is my PERSONAL encouragement for AD18 voters. 

- Harry Briley, Central Committee Member, AD16

Republicans, Freedom and Covid Vaccinations

The Republican Party is the party of freedom.  People should be free to make their own choices with their lives.  Law-abiding citizens should be able to own guns.  Business owners should be able to run their businesses as they decide.  Of course, this freedom principle has two corollaries:  First, my freedom is not the right to infringe your freedom.  Second, choices have consequences.  I am free to smoke cigarettes, but not to poison you with them.  I can overeat or gamble, but can’t blame you if I get fat or broke.

Covid is dangerous, even deadly.  Worst of all, it can be spread unknowingly.  Getting vaccinated is patriotic and an exercise in good citizenship, and makes it easier for all Americans to enjoy the lives we want.  Since no vaccine is 100% effective, vaccinated people should have the freedom to enjoy the benefits of vaccinations—such as eating, drinking and attending functions, indoors and outdoors, without masks or social distancing—without being potentially harmed by those who exercise their freedom to be unvaccinated.

And yet there are some--even my fellow Republicans—who believe they should be free to not get a Covid-19 vaccination, and still do the same things as the vaccinated.  I respectfully urge them to reconsider.

- David Rosenthal, Central Committee Member, AD15

City Councils to fly LGBTQIA+ flag all June

City Councils throughout Alameda County plan to fly the LGBQTIA+ flag all June (one new Livermore council member asked that it be in perpetuity). The flag decision for Livermore is likely to be on May 24 Monday 7pm.  Write out your thoughts to fit within three (3) minutes (write out in advance to help you stay on track). Only in-person and Zoom public comments affect a City Council.  Check your own city clerk web site for this pre-June agenda item (if not already voted upon) and for mechanics on how to speak your message to your local City Council.

City Councils WILL vote for this unless they get a negative public reaction. - Harry Briley, Central Committee Member, AD16