We headed into the near west side of Buffalo where we met with an absolutely fascinating doctor, Myron Glick. He has started a Family Practice here called Jericho Road. And he treats everyone, insurance or no insurance (using a minimal sliding fee scale). This general area is the home for refugee families from all over the world, and Dr. Glick estimates he’s treated patients from at least 50 countries. He said what drives him is his faith. And that faith (he’s Christian) he believes would say, “…that every person has a right to quality health care.” Dr. Glick is pushing for a National Health Care System. And in the interum, he’s looking to help start a similar practice in Buffalo’s near east side. After meeting with Dr. Glick, I told a reporter from the Western New York Catholic newspaper that Dr. Glick is demonstrating a good example of the spirit of the Catholic Church’s teachings on bringing more social justice to the world.
Jamestown, New York is the birthplace of the late actress Lucille Ball. You can’t go around a corner here without seeing her picture in a mural, on a storefront, wherever. About 20,000 people come to her museum here annually. “The world hasn’t stopped ‘loving Lucy,'” said the museum’s marketing director Pat Briminger. We then headed north in Gowanda, NY where I interviewed Officer Ron Russell. He ‘bicycles a beat’ here as part of the town’s Community Oriented Policing model. As part of the program, Officer Russell attended two 40-hour Bicycle Training Programs for C.O.P. officers. Officer Russell said being on a bicycle (as opposed to being encased in a squad car) has helped him develop a better rapport with the town people. And as rapport builds, cooperation with police increases — and crime drops. Our Sarah, 8, listened in on the conversation tonight. Afterward she said: “Boy Dad, he (Officer Russell) really made me feel safe.”
I did the WJTN “Jim Roselli” radio show out of Jamestown, New York this morning. I said a key platform point of ours is: “You can’t heal the country until you heal the family.” Dr. Edward Hallowell, who was the next radio guest, and is a pshychiatrist and instructor at Harvard University, leaned into the microphone and said: “That’s right.” Several hours later, a reporter from Channel 8 News (with the camera rolling) said to me: “So if you win…” I stopped him and said: “What do you mean ‘if?'” And, ok, if I did win… I’d definitely consider Jamestown’s Dr. Rudolph Mueller for a top post in the Surgeon General’s Office. Mueller practices internal medicine and is the author of: “As Sick As It Gets (Healthcare in America)”. He, as are many others these days, is pushing for a National Health Care System where everyone is covered. Dr. Mueller frequently travels the country lecturing and trying to get his point across. Meeting with Dr. Mueller this afternoon, I asked him why he was pushing so passionately for this. He said he’d heard too many horror stories, like the one of a local woman here. She got a cut on her foot. It got infected. She was strapped financially and afraid she couldn’t afford a medical bill. Gangrene set in. By the time she finally went for treatment, there was only one course left. Her leg had to be cut off. “The system is wrong,” Dr. Mueller asserted. “It needs to be redesigned.”
We headed north to Jamestown, New York where The Post-Journal reporter Dennis Phillips asked why I was running. I replied: “We’re concerned about violence in society — including to the unborn — drug abuse, the break down of the nuclear family and the extremely overt and addictive sexual acting out in the media and society in general.”Phillips also interviewed Barb Marlinski, who we had met earlier, for the article. Barb said: “He is for everything that’s important to me and I think he is important for everything that should be important to everybody in the United States.” This evening I also met with Ken Vedder, 17, who has started a website for youth: teenpundit.com. His site offers space for political columns and things like blogs for debates on such topics as Religion, Science, World Politics, U.S. Politics… Ken said youth are often anxious to be heard on these issues, but sometimes aren’t asked their opinion.
I toured the Phoenix House today in Warren, Pennsylvania. It is a halfway house for men with drug and alcohol addiction. It is not connected to a county, or state, agency; but rather was started by what we refer to as an “extra mile American.” Jack Wells started the Phoenix House some 18 years ago because, simply, he saw a need. Since then, some 500 men have gone through the house and Wells estimates some 50% have stayed straight. Many have subsequently gone back to their families, have successful careers and are helping others get straight now too. When asked his motivation for starting the halfway house, Wells replied: “Did you ever save someone else’s life who was drowning?” After meeting with Wells, in honor of the 4th of July, I also met with a couple men who fought for freedom. Gary Seymour and Joby McAulay, both also from Warren, are Vietnam veterans. McAulay started the local chapter of Veterans of the Vietnam War, Inc. (VVnW) several years prior. He also spearheaded the drive to get “The Moving Wall” ( a 5/8th size replica of The Wall in D.C.) to come to Warren recently. He said in a town of 9,000, there were some 4,000 people for the opening ceremony. McAulay said for the five days The Wall was here, people came from all over and left pictures, bracelets, a bottle of a fallen comrade’s favorite beer… on the grass in front of the panel with that particular friend or loved one’s name on it. McAuley, who fought with the 4th Infantry, said in just one battle he lost “44 buddies.” There were a lot of tears those five days in Warren McAuley said, some of them his.
We had the “average Joe” mobile in Warren’s 4th of July Parade today. We were lined up next to a fleet of “The Shriners” organization, bright yellow miniature cars. I walked over and asked: “Hey guys… Is this your answer to the higher gas prices?” They laughed, sort of. State Senate Democratic candidate Kevan Yenerall was also lined up nearby with some of his local organizers, and more green baloons than I’ve ever seen assembled in one place. Yenerall is a professor of Political Science at Clarion University in Pennsylvania. During an interview, he told me he “believes in civic engagement because politics affect almost every part of one’s life: health care, education, business… to potholes in the street.” What’s more, Yenerall doesn’t just rely in didactic teaching methods, he also has the students regularly attend city council meetings, school board meetings, and the like… As the parade got going, we found ourselves right behind a local, Sunday morning radio “Jazz Float,” complete with a band playing some absolutely wonderful tunes. That is, at least the parts you could hear in between my wife (and campaign manager) Liz calling out on our garage sale, $3 bullhorn: “VOTE JOE! HE’S THE WAY TO GO!” Both Liz and my voices were rather hoarse by the end of the parade — which lasted a phenomenal 3 hours.
We arrived in Warren, Pennsylvania a couple days ago and met with Alan Kiser. He is a Constitutional Party state coordinator and candidate. Kiser has run for State Senator and for a House of Represenatives seat. He lost both times, but continues on undaunted. He said his party stands on “Biblical (id, post_author, post_date, post_content, post_title, post_category, post_excerpt, post_status, comment_status, ping_status, post_password, post_name,to_ping, pinged, post_modified) VALUES with a Constitutional standard.” They are pro-family, pro-life and pro-Republic. They would like to see a much smaller Federal Government and a much smaller, and more succint, Constitution — as it was written in the beginning. Alan believes politics should be the “hobby” of every American, because it is so important in setting the tone for society. I told reporter Chuck Hayes of Warren’s Times Observer: “We would like to see a whole lot more Alan Kisers, no matter what they’re political persuasion.” –We are arranging to be in the Warren 4th of July Parade tomorrow. And that’s only because we couldn’t get a good seat. Oddest thing. Some 30 summers ago, according to an article in the Observer, someone “obsessed with have a prime spot” to watch the parade, put their lawn chair out a few days early. Now, starting almost a week out, residents line Pennsylvania Ave. here with lawn chairs they tie to trees and so forth. (They’re even having a lawn chair decorating contest for the first time this year.)… Wait a minute! Did I write: “Pennsylvania Ave.” Might be a warm-up for us for Inaugaration Day next year. (As my wife Liz will often say to me at these moments: “It’s a happy little world you’re living in.”)
In Union City, Pennsylvania, as a campaign donation of sorts today, Village Sign’s Tim Hershberger put some signage on the back of our second campaign vehicle. It reads: “Got Joe?” Clever, huh? And we don’t even have any campaign consultants.
We did a “whistle-stop” event in front of a historic diner in downtown Edinboro, Pennsylvania today on Rte. 6. The event had a new feature today, a small bull horn we’d picked up at a garage sale for 3 bucks. Our six-year-old Joseph loved that. “Can I use it Dad, really!” We might have lost some votes today, but Joseph had fun — screaming. Afterward we had a press conference, or sorts, in the “average Joe” mobile with reporters from the Meadville Tribune and Erie Times-News. I said the night before I had attended a small faith community meeting at Our Lady of the Lake Church here. The group has done a number of outreach projects and most recently they are fasting meals, desserts, etc., and putting the savings in a fund for the “Kid’s Cafe” in the inner city of Erie Pennsylvania, just north of here. One of the group members, Jerry Caler, who made the Olympic Trials as a gymnist in 1964, has volunteered at the Kid’s Cafe. He said perhaps the most poignant thing he’s heard there is a youth saying: “Before I started coming down here, I didn’t know you were supposed to eat three times a day.”
“Pit stop” back in Ohio.