(August 2022)

When the right to vote is aggressively suppressed in many states, our democracy is threatened.

When schools are stripped of America's full and true history, our democracy is threatened.

When some people are striving to teach Christian religion in public schools, the separation of church and state guaranteed in the constitution is threatened.

When abortion is forced upon women, including girl-children who have suffered criminal incest and rape assaults, our fundamental rights and freedoms of bodily autonomy guaranteed in the constitution are threatened.

Democracy is threatened when some people argue that - because of their right to personal freedom over they own bodies - they should be free to not wear a mask or get vaccinations - but many of those same people say a woman should not have the personal freedom over her own body to make the decision to have an abortion.

When hard fought for LGBTQ+ people's rights are threatened, everyone's constitutional rights are threatened.

When domestic terrorists who are Trump extremists - who bragged that they wanted to murder political leaders, including the vice president - viciously attacked our U.S. Capitol with a violent insurrection, democracy was threatened.

When the Republican Party continues to be hijacked by a mentally ill man who has some followers who promote conspiracy theories and chaos, our democracy is threatened.

When truth is denied and lies are told, democracy is threatened.

When the right to own and use an assault weapon to murder people is more important than a person's right to not be murdered by an assault weapon, democracy is threatened.

When misinformation is used to pit Americans against one another with escalating animosity and polarization, our democracy becomes dysfunctional and is threatened.

When tribalism has become toxic in America, democracy is threatened.

When many Americans say that they think a Civil War is becoming a possibility, democracy is threatened.

When some Americans say they want a Civil War, democracy is threatened.

When alternate facts challenge scientific facts, democracy is threatened.

When some people hotly deny global warming, democracy is threatened.

And the tragic list goes on.

China & Russia: Yes, we should be concerned about China and Russia being major threats to America. However, at this moment in time (August 2022) some American citizens are actively attempting to destroy America. No other issue this country currently has is of greater importance than protecting democracy.

Voting Suppression: Voting suppression is one reason some people do not vote, but millions of Americans choose not to vote. Do not be apathetic or indifferent. Do not underestimate the enormous efforts being perpetrated to demolish democracy. Please vote in every local, state, and national election. Vote as if your life and the lives of your loved ones depend on your vote. Our lives do depend on democracy being preserved.

In 2020 the population of the U.S. was 329.5 million. Approximately 240 million people were eligible to vote in the 2020 presidential election and roughly 66.1 percent submitted ballots, totaling about 158 million. Biden received about 81 million votes, Trump about 74 million votes, and other candidates (including Libertarian nominee Jo Jorgensen and Green Party nominee Howie Hawkins) received a combined number of approximately three million votes.

Electoral College: Most Americans want to get rid of the Electoral College system. According to a Pew Research Center survey conducted 06-27-22 through 07-04-22, approximately six-in-ten U.S. adults (63 percent) say the way the president is elected should be changed so that the winner of the popular vote nationwide wins the presidency and approximately 35 percent favor keeping the current Electoral College system.

Filibuster: A filibuster is a political procedure in which one or more members of a legislative body prolong debate on proposed legislation to delay or to prevent a decision.


Gun Control: Seventy percent of Americans think enacting new gun control laws should take precedence over protecting gun ownership rights, according to an ABC News/Ipsos poll.


Supreme Court Term Limits: More than two-thirds of Americans believe Supreme Court justices should be subject to term limits or a set retirement age, according to a new AP-NORC poll that highlights the growing disapproval among Americans of the conservative-majority top court that recently handed down key rulings to overturn the right to abortion and block gun control measures, implemented by states.

Roe v. Wade, a landmark 1973 decision of the Supreme Court, had been considered settled law and an untouchable precedent for nearly fifty years.

During his confirmation hearing to the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh insisted a woman's right to an abortion was settled law that could not be casually overturned. Kavanaugh repeatedly said a women's right to an abortion has been affirmed and he stressed the importance of the precedent.

During her confirmation hearing to the Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett said that laws could not be undone simply by personal beliefs, including her own. As a conservative Christian, she insisted that one's own views don't play a role. She said, "It's not the law of Amy. It's the law of the American people."

During her confirmation hearing in 1993, Ruth Bader Ginsburg said that the decision to bear a child is central to a woman's right and her dignity. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg did not deceive the confirmation committee with her testimony. Throughout her service on the Supreme Court she never betrayed her confirmation statements about abortion rights.

Now that they are on the Supreme Court, both Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett have betrayed their confirmation testimonies about abortion rights and the precedent of settled law associated with abortion rights.

Sen. Joe Manchin said he is "deeply disappointed" by the ruling (to overturn the right to abortion) and singled out Kavanaugh and Gorsuch, whom he voted to confirm, for backing the overturning of Roe. "I trusted Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanaugh when they testified under oath that they believed Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent. I am alarmed that they chose to reject the stability the ruling has provided for two generations of Americans," Manchin said.

Sen. Susan Collins, who voted to confirm Gorsuch and Kavanaugh, called the ruling "ill-considered" and suggested that she had been misled. "This decision is inconsistent with what Justices Gorsuch and Kavanaugh said in their (confirmation) testimonies and their meetings with me, where they both were insistent on the importance of supporting long-standing precedents that the country has relied upon."

In a furious dissent, Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan, and Sonia Sotomayor said the court reversed course (about abortion) for one reason and one reason only: because the composition of this Court has changed. The justices added, "Whatever the exact scope of the coming laws, one result of the decision is certain: the curtailment of women's rights, and of their status as free and equal citizens."

"With sorrow - for this Court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have lost a fundamental constitutional protection - we dissent," they concluded.

Democracy Undermined: It is currently August 2022 and confidence in the Supreme Court is in a freefall. More than half of Americans oppose the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and many Americans say the ruling was based more on politics than on the law, according to polls from PBS NewsHour, NPR, and Marist. Poll after poll shows that Americans overall favor keeping Roe v. Wade. The Supreme Court's anti-abortion ruling, a decision that is at odds with most Americans, is a disturbing example of what happens when democracy is undermined.

Other Rights In Jeopardy: Justice Clarence Thomas is ringing another national alarm bell by saying the court should reexamine legal issues associated with the right to contraception, the right to same-sex partnerships, and the right same-sex marriage.

Supreme Court's Declining Trust: 58 percent of Americans say they do not place much trust in the nation's highest court, a precipitous drop since February 2018, when roughly the same percent of Americans said they had a lot of confidence. Nearly a third of Americans said they have no confidence at all in the court, a dramatic rise of 12 percentage points since May 2022.

Midterm elections traditionally do not have voter turnout as much as presidential elections. However, 6 out of 10 Americans say the court's decision to ban abortion makes them more likely to vote in midterm elections.


Puerto Rico Statehood: After Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in late 2017, more than a third of U.S. adults agreed that the response to the disaster would have been quicker if Puerto Rico had been a state. In a 2019 Gallup Poll, two-thirds of the public favored admitting Puerto Rico as a state.

The population of Puerto Rico is 2,701,340 as of 08-27-22, based on Worldometer elaboration of the latest United Nations data.


Washington D.C. Statehood: About one in four Americans (27 percent) currently say they are not sure what to think about giving statehood to Washington, D.C. Currently it is estimated that three in five Democrats favor making Washington, D.C. a state, compared to 14 percent of Republicans.

Washington D.C. 2021 Population 670,050

Black (non-Hispanic) 44.2 percent
White (non-Hispanic) 37.3 percent
Hispanic/Latino 11.5 percent
Asian (non-Hispanic) 4.4 percent

Multiracial (non-Hispanic) - Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders (non-Hispanic) - percentages so small they are not listed by percent on the pie chart.


Schools: Public schools are not supposed to be religion based, certainly not a solitary religion whose goal is to teach conservative Christianity. Religious freedom in America should not be narrowed to the Christian religion and no religion should be taught in public schools.


Trump's Mental Health: Nearly 60,000 mental health professionals have diagnosed Donald Trump's mental health, a narcissistic symbiosis and shared psychosis with many of his followers. Here is an excellent article published in Scientific American that should alarm voters. Scientific American is part of Springer Nature, which owns or has commercial relations with thousands of scientific publications. Scientific American maintains a strict policy of editorial independence in reporting developments in science to their readers.


The Harvard Political Review is a quarterly, nonpartisan American magazine and website on politics and public policy founded in 1969 at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It covers domestic and international affairs and political events, as well as political discourse at Harvard. It also conducts interviews with political figures and experts. The magazine was founded by a group of Harvard undergraduates, including Al Gore, as a publication that allowed students to research, write, and edit political commentary in a thoughtful, non-partisan forum. To this day, the HPR does not take magazine-wide editorial positions. While individual articles have distinct viewpoints, the magazine as a whole does not represent any ideology or party.


Since 2004: A Starry Night Productions has worked with creative artists who are affiliated with various political parties including traditional Republicans. The majority of our traditional Republican friends say the "Trump MAGA Republican Party" does not represent them. They say they no longer have a party.

Show Up: We urge Democrats, people of various political parties including traditional Republicans, women, people or color, and young people to understand the incredible power that we collectively have. We can save democracy. We have endured unfathomable grief and appalling injustice together - now let us show up at the ballots to vote for fairness, justice, and hope for all people.

September 2022

Gerrymandering: In representative democracies, gerrymandering is the political manipulation of electoral district boundaries with the intent of creating undue advantage for a party, group, or socio-economic class within the constituency.

The term gerrymandering is named after American politician Elbridge Gerry, Vice President of the United States at the time of his death. As Governor of Massachusetts in 1812, he signed a bill that created a partisan district in the Boston area that was compared to the shape of a mythological salamander.

The primary goals of gerrymandering are to maximize the effect of supporters votes and to minimize the effect of opponents votes. A partisan gerrymander's main purpose is to influence not only the districting statute but also the entire corpus of legislative decisions enacted in its path. The term has negative connotations and gerrymandering is almost always considered a corruption of the democratic process.

Gerrymandering should not be confused with malapportionment, whereby the number of eligible voters per elected representative can vary widely without relation to how the boundaries are drawn. Nevertheless, the -mander suffix has been applied to particular malapportionments. Sometimes political representatives use both gerrymandering and malapportionment to try to maintain power.

The Fulcrum is a platform where insiders and outsiders to politics are informed, meet, talk, and act to repair our democracy and make it live and work in our everyday lives.