Headlines This Week

August 31, 2017

Hello everybody out there in farm country. This radio commentary is brought to you by the National Corn Growers Association and CropLife America. They are friends, supporters, and allies of a healthy farm economy and prosperous rural America. Thank you.

And now for today’s commentary—

What are the headlines this week? The floods and destruction of Hurricane Harvey have hammered the Texas Coast. We have seen pictures of people on top of their cars, on top of their houses, reaching for help to escape the flood of water. All reports tell us that federal, state, and city officials have been doing all they can to ease the pain. President Trump went to the flood area on Tuesday. Human suffering is obvious; but what about the cattle?

There are 1.2 million head of cattle in the flooded counties. That is 27% of the cattle in Texas. Ranchers have been trying to move them to higher ground but it is not so easy. Many will drown. And after the floods recede, there will be no food for them. Families, farms, and ranches will need a lot of help to rebuild their lives. It will take years.

Another issue that I have talked about before has to do with the federal government’s ownership and control of so much land in the west. The federal government owns as much as one-half or one-third of some states. President Obama added more acres by declaring new land as national monuments.

I think President Trump should put some of the land into private hands or maybe state control. Ranchers and farmers rely on these lands. If they were in private hands, we would see jobs created and businesses established.

Another subject that I have not spoken about is the question of whether we should tear down or remove our Confederate statues and monuments. I say no. They are part of our history and many of them are works of art. I don’t think they suggest that we support slavery. We must admit that there was a time when slavery was acceptable in countries all over the world. If we decide that we must get rid of the statues, where do we stop? The U.S. Capitol has hundreds of them. Do we remove Democrat Senator Robert Byrd’s rooms at the Capitol since he was once a KKK member?

Last subject is the reality that no NFL football team seems to want to bring Colin Kaepernick onto their team since he refused to stand as the national anthem was played. He said he did that because blacks are not treated fairly. If that is what he thinks – fine, but refusal to stand during the playing of our national anthem disrespects our country, our flag, our military. That is disgusting conduct. I don’t need him on my team.

If you would like to review my radio shows going back more than 20 years, just go on-line to http://www.johnblockreports.com Have .a great weekend.

Until next week, I am John Block from Washington.