Good morning. I’m writing with sunshine outside my window and my maniac dog in his crate or he’ll try to drink my coffee and eat the chocolate chip muffin. [Post has been edited for grammar and spelling]

After the events in Washington this past week, and after the behavior of our apparent Orange in Chief soon-to-be-fake President, I’m more angry than ever. Every day, as in the campaign, there’s something new and since the election, there’s been a worsening of the news that we get daily. My anger has turned to fury and rage.

I’m a proud American, but I’m ashamed of our government. The GOP is behaving shamefully because they’re enacting ey may no longer claim that they’re on the side of Pro-Life, just as for decades they haven’t been able to claim the righteousness of being “the Christian party” in spite of the many so-called Christians and christians that side with them and hang on every word. They are actually and literally anti-Pro-Life and anti-Pro-choice. They are anti-unborn babies; they are anti-children; they are anti-adults and seniors and teens. They are anti-disabled individuals, especially if you’ve listened to them spout how much of a burden we are. Let’s just open up the ovens again, eh? Go back to Eugenics. Apparently they believe Nazi Germany had it right.

Anti-freedom. Anti-American.

If you don’t believe me, you need to trust me when I say that you have been benefiting from the Affordable Care Act (the ACA) for years now. That’s its appropriate name. It was begun years ago [decades, in fact, even before the beloved Reagan] by Republicans and simply was refined and put into place by President Obama in a, “Why the hell did we wait so long? Now is the time,” effort.”

Revenge and Dismantling a Legacy, Simply Out of Revenge

And simply to be able to say, later what a failure his Presidency has been. Except no, the failure is theirs and the failure is the legacy of the GOP.

The GOP has had a hissy fit ever since and attached the moniker “Obamacare,” because they didn’t get it out there first. Why? Well, in order to get those who already hate President Obama to hate the ACA. Their behavior has never to get people to vote in their best interests, but in the interest of the GOP and helping them obtain power. In order to try to get them to believe that something that would benefit the common Republican citizen and their families, even in ways that they didn’t understand, calling it Obamacare made it easier to get people to believe that it was actually harming them and costing them more. It was so effective that business owners who didn’t want to comply chose fucked up plans for their employees and then blamed President Obama. Even those who work in healthcare, especially die-hard Republican voters, swallowed the GOP Kook-Aid on this.

But as things have gone on, more and more people who have figured out that they needed the ACA and the good it’s been for them, even if it’s needed some tweaking, the more desperate the GOP has been to try to gain complete control. They allowed the Tea Party to take hold. They did whatever it took, including treason, to get someone they thought would be a puppet and just as corrupt as they, into the POTUS.

And now, overnight, the GOP voted to defund and block amendments of protection in the Affordable Care Act, protections that would remain while they gut the rest and “make it great” or create a new plan, a wonderful plan, a GREAT plan, a plan in the works, we just don’t know what it is yet, but it’ll be great. Things that should have remained no matter how they gutted it.

And so the Senate GOP blocked the shit out of:

  1. Protecting people with pre-existing conditions. Sorry, but you’re screwed. Remember how awesome it was when every single person who has a pre-existing condition, and was previously always rejected by their employer’s insurance plan, their spouse’s employer’s insurance plan, etc. finally got to obtain coverage because finally it was illegal to be rejected? It was illegal because it was unfair discrimination. It still is. Until now. Because the GOP has decided this protection shouldn’t be in place. Now, even if a company allows someone with a pre-existing condition and/or disability onto their plan as a non-elderly person, premiums for those individuals to be on the plan will be higher than their peers. That’s IN ADDITION TO co-pays and deductibles.
  2. Making it easier for younger people up to 26 yrs old living with their parents (like students) to stay on their parents insurance plan. Nope. Can’t do it. Disabled?Babies are only valuable and worth saving as long as they’re unborn. Don’t care. That protection was voted away. College students like my nephew, especially if they choose to go for higher than a BA. Or individuals that are disabled, need a better insurance than Medicare or Medicaid for a few extra years. This particular protection and expansion has allowed individuals with disabilities to have both Medicare and/or Medicaid as a secondary insurance rather than a primary insurance to their parents’ insurance, which has helped REDUCE costs of young people who require Medicare and/or Medicaid.
  3. Maintaining access to contraception coverage, which is essential for low-income families who couldn’t afford contraception any other way. Low income families who perhaps couldn’t even afford health insurance before the Affordable Care Act was effectively put into law. Even if you hated the fact that your (or any) employer or you as an employer was “forced” to cover contraception for employees, the overall cost of contraceptives DROPPED as access to them increased; and more people used contraceptives. That means that FEWER unwanted pregnancies occurred and FEWER pregnancy terminations occurred than would have otherwise just in 2015. Isn’t a goal of those of us who are Christian to prevent unwanted pregnancies? Don’t we want to reduce the termination of pregnancies? Don’t we want to prevent young women and in fact any woman from being forced into terminations they don’t want, but being able to have legal access to contraception that’s covered for them? And for instances when contraception fails, or when so-called “natural pregnancy prevention methods” fail, or heaven forbid there’s rape or a pregnancy with a failure to thrive and the baby dies… don’t you think it prudent that the woman have safe and legal access to doctors that SHE can make a decision with on how to handle her health and pregnancy? In sterile, safe clinics and hospitals? The GOP doesn’t think so. Because they blocked the shit out of that too. Because in case you didn’t know, they’re trying to get rid of Planned Parenthood entirely. The repercussions of that? I’ll address in a whole new post.
  4. Ensuring that the Medicaid expansion would occur. 11 MILLION Americans have benefited from this,  just in 2015…  and this is actually a positive. In 2015, Medicaid allowed people to become healthier and maintain their health versus being chronically ill (as well as the health of their children) at low cost or no cost. Most people on Medicaid don’t remain on it, and go off within two years or so. When people can maintain good health, that means that it’s easier for them to find work. When people don’t have to worry about the additional burden of excessive costs of healthcare and medical insurance, it allows them to concentrate better on presenting themselves in a professional manner for interviews. They can better afford a running car, haircuts, food, decent enough clothing. And so… During 2015 thousands of individuals who benefited from Medicaid were able to find jobs and finding jobs leads to no longer needing Medicaid. It also leads to fewer deaths.
  5. Ensuring children could keep Medicaid even if their parents weren’t on it. That’s right. They voted to defund and block the amendment to Medicaid and CHIP (Childrens Health Insurance Program) which provide comprehensive health care, preventative health care, and developmental services and care. To children. Babies. Preemie babies. That would include children in low income families that can’t afford healthcare any other way that have disabilities, chronic illness, cancer, diabetes, severe injury, or any other horror you can think of. They blocked the shit out of it. Babies lives are only valuable while they’re unborn. 
  6. Our veterans. Yes, they blocked the shit out of benefits for our supposedly “most valued citizens” and most heroic… American Veterans by blocking an amendment that would have made it harder to restrict their access to health care. It’s already difficult for our veterans to obtain/access services from the VA, isn’t it. And let’s not forget this tidbit: Trump has proposed to ELIMINATE the VA through privatization and a voucher program that 2/3 of Veterans oppose. A proposition that would increase premiums, copay amounts, and difficulty in finding doctors that would accept the various insurance plans that would then be in competition with each other as costs increasingly rise annually.

 

So really. Almost every individual that’s not a non-disabled rich white male that doesn’t have to worry about healthcare costs is being screwed over. The GOP made extra special Fuck You’s to:

  1. Women
  2. Unplanned babies
  3. Babies and Children
  4. Veterans
  5. Disabled Veterans
  6. Pretty much any Disabled Person
  7. Individuals with Pre-existing Conditions, especially if they have disabilities
  8. Young Adults trying to establish themselves with their parents help
  9. Poor people who need health care, who may or may not be working
  10. Poor disabled people who need health care, who may or may not be working
  11. Poor people, disabled or not, trying to get employed

 

We need to get out of the mindset that only healthy people and non-disabled people with stable, high paying jobs deserve health care. We need to get out of the mindset that disabilities and illnesses equal damage or a diminished individual. This has been a HUGE blow to disability rights.

We need to get out of the mindset that women don’t have the intelligence or rights to make decisions about their own health, about their own family planning, or about their lives. We need to get out of the mindset that women are lesser than men, and that women deserve fewer rights. This has been a HUGE blow to women’s rights.

If you’re not outraged, you ought to be. If you voted these people in, you should still be outraged because this affects you too. I don’t begrudge you the right to be just as angry as those of us who voted for HRC or one of the other candidates.

If you think healthcare was bad before the ACA… if you think it was “bad” during the ACA because you fell for the GOP propaganda… prepare yourself. Everything is about to get a lot worse. Like, fascist Germany and Russia dictator worse.

And please… stop telling people who didn’t vote for Trump to “get over it” and “just accept it, he’s the President.” All you need to do is turn on the news every day. Remember that the one trying to control the truth that the media puts out is him. Look at the media from other countries about what’s going on, and listen. They’re doing their own independent investigations and let me tell you…. it’s scary. They know and are sharing the information with their countries what our FBI, ie. Comey, won’t share about Trump.

Think about this. England is afraid of him. But even scarier, and you need to really pay attention to this: GERMANY is frightened of Trump. Germany is afraid of what will happen, in particular the things that Trump has said and is saying about Russia and the intelligence coming from intelligence agencies all over the world that the FBI is suppressing.

This isn’t a Liberal vs Conservative thing.

But back to the Affordable Care Act.

This isn’t a Liberal vs Conservative thing either. It’s about living. It’s about health. If you want to spend less, trust me, that won’t be happening. This isn’t the way. Making America HEALTHY again ought to be one of our greatest priorities. Staying healthy means preventative care. Staying healthy means access to healthcare that every single American citizen deserves to have in this already great country that we live in. Why in the world are we so eager to allow the GOP to dismantle something that everyone with healthcare insurance has benefited from, even when they haven’t realized it?

Human Rights have just been violated in a major way,

and if we allow this to occur, it’s going to keep on happening. You want to know what’s next? The Americans With Disabilities Act. The Education Act. The Marriage Equality Act. Those have all been specifically targeted to be dismantled by Trump and the GOP. So don’t you tell me that none of what’s happening and going to happen doesn’t and won’t affect you, your families, your friends, your coworkers, or other loved ones.

If you voted this human garbage in, any of it, you can still protest peacefully. You can contact your lawmakers. You don’t have to accept anything. It’s perfectly okay for you to be uncomfortable and angry with the fact that you voted for this filth and the other pieces of filth that are voting away all of our human rights in health care.

For fuck’s sake, we have a filthy excuse of a human being about to be sworn, in as President, a known ACTUAL criminal. Denies and distracts as he commits crime after crime including treason. Crimes he ought to be in Federal prison for; actual crimes. I’m sorry if you think that Hillary R. Clinton committed any crimes… but you fell for GOP Propaganda with your eyes wide open, and you chose it. You knew it.

You fell for it like a suicide jumper.

The difference is that you can still come in off the ledge.


This is beautiful. I can’t wait to see the full article in NatGeo. Thanks to HuffPost for the heads up on it! I found it on LGBT Aging Advocacy’s FB page this morning.

 

The stunning issue coincides with a new documentary.

Source: National Geographic Makes History With Transgender Cover Girl | The Huffington Post


I’m still breathing, I’m still here, and I’m surviving. It’s been a rough month for me, emotionally, mentally, and physically. We had snow over the past weekend and additional bad weather, and it affected my pain so terribly I spent two days in bed. I was completely miserable, in complete agony. I disconnected from everything except for my Kindle so that I could read and watch a couple of movies.

So yes, I’m here. My computer is also out for repair, so that’s hindering me quite a bit too. I just remembered that. It’s hard to type on my phone for lengthy posts. 🙂 I’ll be back soon… I promise.


I wrote this blog entry below two years ago today. How funny it is that it popped up in my Facebook memories. I don’t even remember sharing it. I haven’t seen my Rheumatologist in a while, and I’ve been hesitating on going back because of… anxiety and agoraphobia. Simple, so it seems, but so very complicated.

It seems to me that God is nudging me to start taking better care of myself again, and to include the Rheumatologist.

For that matter, I’ve been hedging on calling the radiologist to perform the Breast Cancer screening. I haven’t done it in two years. Ah ah ah… I know, shame on me. But the pain from it was indescribable.

I did get the Electromyogram (EMG) and Nerve Conduction Study done on my arms and hands. A technician did the first test, and my neurologist did the second test. I’m not sure which one was which. I had to lay down, and let them check various nerve points in my hands and arms. They used electricity somewhat like in those little TENS units you can get at CVS for $50… but stronger. And they used needles.

Even when I expected them to “zap” I still felt startled, and I couldn’t tense up or it would ruin the test. I still cried, because I couldn’t help it. It was a natural response, they said, and that my body literally couldn’t keep from crying and therefore, I shouldn’t feel badly. They also said that the pain I felt was “legit” whatever that meant.

But they ALSO said that the pain, twitching, and clenching in my arms, hands, and fingers wasn’t due to the bulging discs. It can therefore be blamed entirely on the Fibromyalgia.

They have to test my lower limbs now. We haven’t set up a test date yet for that, but I’ll be hearing from them soon.

As it is, I have to go. I have an appointment with my pain management doctor. Wheee!

 

I had a 6-month check up with my PCP on Wednesday.  Since my Fibromyalgia diagnosis, this has been something she insists on in order to see the progression of my pain and how I’m handling it.…

Source: Moving Matters Along | Ever So Gently


There’s a reason I haven’t blogged in the past week, and it’s because I’ve been struggling in being gracious inside my head and on paper regarding the results of the 2016 Presidential Election. I’ve been having some very difficult conversations with my daughters and others regarding realistic expectations, graciousness, positivity, advocacy, self-advocacy, fairness, how to deal with life when things don’t go your way, legitimizing their feelings, etc. It’s hard having those conversations when in your head, you’re thinking,

“Fuck it fuck it fuck it fuck it fuck it fuck it fuck it fuck it fuck it fuck it oh my gosh just fuck it awww look my dog loves me.”

I’m having some difficult conversations with myself, as you can see. 😉 I’m not a poor loser. I’m struggling with what it means to be gracious, and how not to throat punch those who are pompous enough to believe they can order others to “be gracious losers” and “accept the results already” when in fact they haven’t learned to be “gracious winners.”

I’ve mastered “gracious loser,” you see. I haven’t mastered grieving on someone else’s timeline.

The difficulty lies in the fact that it has nothing at all to do with a lack of acceptance over the election results. I accept him as the president, and I’m willing to give him a chance. Well, I was until he hired a well known white supremacist, but even I can suppose a second chance is on the table.

Anyway.

The difficulty lies in the fact that I, like so many others, am in a true grieving process. There hasn’t been one single day that I haven’t cried over the results. It doesn’t mean I’m a crybaby. It means I grieve for what our nation has become when 46% refused to turn out to vote. It means I grieve for the clear message that the misaligned in our nation don’t matter to most of the country.

I grieve because I know what’s ahead.

I may be part of one or two or more privileged segments of American society, but I’m part of multiple significantly marginalized groups. I paid attention during the campaign season to what all of the candidates said and what their platforms were, and I’ve been living in this body experiencing what it’s like fighting against the Republican ideal for years now.

I’ve paid attention over the past several decades regarding what the various political parties have been doing to marginalized groups or for marginalized groups. I’ve paid attention to how the parties have been evolving or devolving. I’ve paid attention to how various individual politicians have evolved or devolved over time. It’s how I came to choose “my” candidate.

It’s why I’m in genuine mourning now. I get to grieve over the loss of stability. I get to grieve over the worldwide embarrassment that the election results have given the U.S. We outdid Brexit, after all. We thought no one could do that. America has to be the best at everything.

We had to outdo England, though, didn’t we. So for 2016 we outdid them at Most Embarrassing and Dangerous Political Fiasco of All Time. We fucked up. In the most disastrous way possible. Every nation except Russia, and maybe the Korea with that crazy ass dictator that wants to nuke everyone, recognizes it. And ISIL and al queda welcome it.

It’s why I support the peaceful protests.

The protests aren’t against the results of the election. They’re not a bunch of whiny babies. They’re marginalized individuals and groups speaking out against the proposed policies of the Trump campaign, and the moves that have already been made during the transition that’s begun.

The protests are a reminder that those of us who are marginalized, and those who are our allies and those who are advocates alongside us, will not be quiet regarding rights and protections. A Trump Presidency isn’t acceptance for bigotry, misogyny, violence, bullying, racism, religionism, spiritual abuse, physical abuse, anti-immigration, acceptance for the KKK and white supremacy. The protests are a reminder of the ideals that this nation is supposed to uphold, and the people we’re supposed to protect. The protests are supposed to be a reminder of everything we are prided for, and everything that other nations have been envious of us over.

The protests aren’t so much protests as they are a reminder that the voices for freedom, advocacy, and equality will always be there to hold back the hand of abuse and suppression.

And that will not, absolutely will not, go away graciously.


Have you ever tried those little Milky Way mini bites that are caramel apple flavor? No? If you enjoy caramel apples and chocolate, you really must try them. Must.

Have you ever tried to melt one in your coffee? No? Do it.

Have you ever brewed a mug of dark roast coffee and then put in an unbrewed K-cup of dark hot chocolate? No? What are you waiting for?

Other chocolate issues that must be handled immediately:

  • Let chocolate sit on your tongue to melt. Don’t just pop it into your mouth, chew it, and swallow.  Smell it first. Place it into your mouth, let it sit on your tongue, and savor it. Let it melt, let your tongue actually taste it. Enjoy it. Let it be a full sensory experience. Eat it slowly. The point isn’t to get it into your stomach immediately. The point is to taste and enjoy it fully.
  • Once a year, allow yourself to go into a real chocolatier to buy some gourmet, handmade chocolate. It doesn’t have to be a lot, but go in and buy something you enjoy. Good chocolate is worth the money once in a while, and it’s good for you
  • Keep a candy dish full of chocolates in a space on your desk or in your desk drawer at work where no one but you is aware of
  • If you have children at home who enjoy chocolate, keep the cheap chocolate where they can see it and keep the nice stuff at work
  • Chobani yogurt with chocolate chips is delicious
  • Mocha creamer should always be in your fridge
  • After you’ve appropriately mocha’d up your coffee, add a sprinkle of cinnamon
  • Don’t ruin any chocolate desserts with whipped cream from a can; make it yourself, and use the Stoneyfield heavy cream. Don’t use the stuff that says “whipping cream” because all of that stuff tends to have fillers and thickeners. You want real, straight, will spoil within a week heavy cream. And Stoneyfield is the one that fits the bill and tastes best. I’m picky about heavy cream… it all tastes sour to me.
  • Have you ever tried adding cocoa to whipped cream? Heaven
  • Don’t bother with any chocolate shavings that are pre-curled or shaved in a bottle. They don’t taste good. They’re like wax. You either have it and do it by hand or you don’t.
  • When you bake a chocolate cake and you have to dust the baking pans to flour them? Instead, use butter or vegetable shortening; then dust the pans with unsweetened cocoa instead. Don’t cheat on chocolate cake with the Baker’s Joy floured sprays. They’re a lifesaver but not if you want the most delicious chocolate cake even if it’s boxed cake

 

Whipped Cream:

1/2 pint heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla
3 tsp confectioner’s sugar

Beat on high in a cold bowl using a cold mixing paddle. I prefer to use a stand mixer with the wire mixer. Beat it until it’s fluffy and could be used to frost a cake if you wanted, but not so much that you’re turning it into butter. This amount you’re making here is good for a couple of pies, some ice cream sundaes, and some hot chocolate or dolloping onto coffee. You don’t need to use a lot because it’s nice and rich, and has a lot of flavor. Just dollops here and there.


Tomorrow is Election Day, and Ladies, we have a lot at stake in this election. The purpose of this entry isn’t to try to force you to vote one way or the other. No. I’m pleading with you to simply vote tomorrow. Recognize the Feminist in yourself and exercise your womens right to vote.

Please Don’t Refrain From Voting

I’m speaking to all of you amazing women out there who are eligible to vote and are registered  but are choosing not to vote.

This isn’t about choosing a female President. Thats not what makes this about feminism or women’s rights. 

This is about making the most important decision of your life: using your civic duty to vote, a right we had to fight nearly 100 years to obtain legally. A right that took us 132 years, from the conception of our nation, to obtain.

That, my amazing Ladies, is what makes this a Women’s Right issue.

That’s what makes it a Feminist issue.

Nothing could be more Feminist than exercising our right to vote.

I know that we’ve heard for the past 18 months just how. very. important. this. election. is. We’ve been telling each other how important Donald Trumps fuckery is. We’ve been telling each other how Gary Johnson’s lack of education and personality is. We’ve been telling each other how Jill Stein’s general anti-science whackadoodly-ness is a problem. We’ve been telling other that Hillary Clinton’s e-mails are a huge conspiracy and somehow… criminal? And she personally murdered people in Benghazi? Anyway.

We know the choices in the election that we’re expected to make are important.

Yes. We know.

We’re going to be voting for ourselves, for our own personal benefit, sure… but we’re also going to be voting for our mothers, grandmothers, aunts, cousins, best friends, nieces, neighbors, and most especially our daughters, granddaughters, and great-granddaughters. If they don’t or can’t vote; if they’re voting for who we believe in our heart is the wrong candidate, then we really are voting on their behalf.

We’re going to be voting to maintain the right to decide what to do with our own healthcare; our bodies; how we’re treated in the workplace; how we’re paid; if we’re viewed with respect or as sex objects, and disposable. 

It’s not drama or cliche to state that our lives, as women depend upon voting. Not just for voting day, and not just for four years or eight years. Our lives depend on the outcome of this election for decades to come. That’s not a cliche.

If you’re feeling disenfranchised, I get it. If you’re feeling as if there isn’t a candidate that represents you in any way, I get that too. If you’re feeling as if each candidate is saying something you can understand, but none of them are “perfect enough” I really do understand. I commiserate wholly. I understand all of those feelings, because I’ve cycled through them myself at various points in this election season.

Every election is important, and every single one seems to cause increasingly bad anxiety, but I realized that anxiety has much more to do with the increasingly horrible hate and anger I see among the people around me. It’s become more entrenched than ever that there’s a My Side versus Your Side in politics, with people convinced that the Other Side is not only not their cup of tea but evil. There’s this idea that if someone opposes your political views, or they voice a dissenting view it’s a declaration of war and a relationship destroyed . 

Over the past two weeks, there’s been an increasing frenzy and panic from those who think their “side” is losing. I see that happening, and I see women who have always voted stating that they’re not voting in this election… at all. Not just in the Presidential Election, but the General Elections as well.

Your Vote Matters So Very Much, Ladies

So many people, so many women believe that a single vote… their vote doesn’t mean anything. 

Ladies… oh my gosh, it does. It’s your voice!

It’s your individualty showing through, the one way to make sure your opinion and thoughts are given a voice to say that you  matter. 

It’s really intense, and the best ways to make a positive difference. We don’t have to like the fact that we have government, or how it runs. We don’t have to like the system. We’re part of it whether we like it or not and if we want and plan to ever change the parts of the system that aren’t working properly or fairly, then the only way to do that… to enact change is to vote. Get involved.

Back in Time…

Rich white Christian men have always known these things. They know that every single vote has power. Why do you think they denied women, all women, the right to vote until 1920?  

The first time the United States ever used elections and voted was in the United States presidential election of 1788–89; it was the first quadrennial presidential election. It was held from Monday, December 15, 1788 to Saturday, January 10, 1789. Some men, an elect few, were allowed to vote. In the 1830’s the vote to extended to ALL white men, and in 1868 it was extended to Black men. 

But it wasn’t until 1920… 132 years after elections and voting were established as a fair way to establish leadership, for women to obtain the right to vote.

Women Were NOT “Given” the Right to Vote

History will say that all who were born in the United States have been, by right of birth, U.S. citizens from the very beginning. 

People frequently say things like American Women (all women in all demographics) were GIVEN the right to vote. Black Men in America were GIVEN the right to vote.

That’s not the truth. We had to fight for it, clawed ourselves bloody and bruised, literally, through public speaking and the court systems to obtain the right to vote.

The problem is that when citizens who were born in the United States are not treated equally, are not given the same rights, or the laws that ensure equal rights are not upheld in courts or by law enforcement, then we are not really all considered citizens. We are Other. We are Less Than. We are Property. We’re disposable and not worthy of tthoughts or consideration. 

Any perceived threat to those in power is met with intimidation and creation of loopholes in the laws that are intended to protect those who are being discriminated against. The perceived threats are smote out early, fast, and without mercy. It’s how American men learned to deal with the British when Independence was fought for and won. Those same tactics were used against Native Americans. They’re used against all Federally Protected Classes. There’s a reason they’re protected… and yet those in power, those with extreme prejudices, still try to break those laws and create laws in direct violation.

Right now? 240 years after The Continental Congress approved the final wording of the Declaration of Independence on July 4th 1776? 

The rights of women as equal citizens worthy of respect has not progressed for many men… and sadly, for many women. There are women who are perfectly happy to let men decide their fate and rule their lives. Back in the colonial days it was a throwback to England’s customs and traditions to have women be the “wards” of their fathers, and then property of their husbands. This is an idea that still permeates our culture today. Some claim it’s Biblical or just a desire to have a “traditional marriage when life was good in the 50’s.”

The Women’s Right Movement began as far back as 1848 in the U.S. Women recognized the injustices including and especially upstanding women in the community and their religious communities. 

“The history of mankind is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations on the part of man toward woman, having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over her. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.

  • Married women were legally dead in the eyes of the law
  • Women were not allowed to vote
  • Women had to submit to laws when they had no voice in their formation
  • Married women had no property rights
  • Husbands had legal power over and responsibility for their wives to the extent that they could imprison or beat them with impunity
  • Divorce and child custody laws favored men, giving no rights to women
  • Women had to pay property taxes although they had no representation in the levying of these taxes
  • Most occupations were closed to women and when women did work they were paid only a fraction of what men earned
  • Women were not allowed to enter professions such as medicine or law
  • Women had no means to gain an education since no college or university would accept women students
  • With only a few exceptions, women were not allowed to participate in the affairs of the church
  • Women were robbed of their self-confidence and self-respect, and were made totally dependent on men

Now, in view of this entire disenfranchisement of one-half the people of this country, their social and religious degradation, — in view of the unjust laws above mentioned, and because women do feel themselves aggrieved, oppressed, and fraudulently deprived of their most sacred rights, we insist that they have immediate admission to all the rights and privileges which belong to them as citizens of these United States.” ~ Elizabeth Cady Stanton

 

In the 1830s, the vote was extended to all white men, in 1868 to black men. Except in the South especially, there were disenfranchisement laws such as Grandfather clauses that said if your grandfather could vote, so could you. If your grandfather didn’t vote, where did that leave the black men who had just won the right to vote? There were also literacy tests. If someone couldn’t read, they couldn’t vote. At the time black men won the right to vote (won, not given) most were not free men, they were slaves, and many slave owners severely punished their slaves if they were caught reading or learning to read. Nice, eh? Such a lovely history of voting disenfranchisement.

When the 19th Amendment was passed in 1920, it legally enfranchised all women to vote, white and black. 

However, within a decade, state laws and vigilante practices managed to disenfranchise most black women in the South. Additionally, there were expensive poll taxes. Yes you had to pay a poll tax in order to be allowed to vote and if you were poor, or poor and black, then you couldn’t vote. 

It took women nearly 100 years from the start of the Women’s Movement to win a bitter battle to vote against staunch, hateful adversity and yet now, not even 100 years after women won that most tedious of fights, there are women ready to give up their votes? 

Shameful. I’m sorry, but it’s shameful.

The Disdain Is Not One of Moral High Ground

By refraining to vote in the General Elections and/or the Presidential Elections of 2016, the worst of us… our apathy, impassivity, disdain, show a clear negligence and clear disregard for accountability in the well being of our local and state governments as well as our national government. 

You’re not making a statement, not even one that states how weary you are of it all. The only disdain that you show is to your fellow women, and those who fought, were imprisoned, and died for your right to vote.

By refraining to vote, Ladies, I can’t help but notice a clear lack of empathy. I can’t help but notice your choice to ignore the very real issues that face every single individual in this country, but especially those that will affect those closest to you.

If you refrain from voting, you’re not making a statement of any kind. Your voice won’t be heard in any way. Not politically, not socially, not morally or ethically. The vote is your voice, and the vote is how you make your voice count. 

Refusing to vote, whether out of frustration or to make a statement, stifles your voice in every way possible. You lose a right, willingly, that was fought for very heavily… a right that women before us died for and were imprisoned for while fighting.

If you want to protest, if you want your voice to be heard, then get to the voting booth! That’s where it happens! The more of us that vote, the more of an effect we’ll have!

It ought to enrage you, Ladies, no matter what your political affiliation, that Women’s Rights are even debateable and in question

We need to make sure that we send the message that Women’s Rights are not actually on the table, to be discussed seriously as to whether we have a right to be treated with human decency.

Trust Me, There Won’t Be Enough Good People Voting

Unless you vote, there won’t be enough good people voting.

We can’t give tacit permission for any government to red pen the Constitutional Amendments that ensure women have Equal Rights, Civil Rights, Human Rights. If we don’t vote, that’s exactly what we’ll be doing. 

Choosing not to vote, and the apathy that would show, that choice you make gives  lawmakers the ability to continuously and regularly vote against Women’s Rights… and it doesn’t impress me. It disgusts me. Because when enough people decide that their votes don’t count, then enough good people don’t show up at the polls to vote in good people. And then the good people who would enact better policies and laws than the “other guy” end up screwing over everyone… especially women.

My fear here is that too many women are in the frame of mind that there will be enough other voters to “make up for” their vote, and therefore their candidate will make it in. Or that there are women who are throwing away their vote by allowing their significant others to tell them who to vote for rather than allowing them to make up their own minds. Or that there are women who really do believe that their vote won’t matter at all so why bother because “the election is rigged.”

No, no, and no.

Nifty Fact

I love it when I stumble on neat little facts because I can always use them at some point. For instance, this one:

There were about 125.9 million adult women in the United States in 2014. The number of men was 119.4 million.

My math skills aren’t fabulous, but I think that’s 54%. In fact, I believe that I’ve heard we do make up 54% of the citizenship of the United States of America.

That makes women a very powerful force in this country. That makes us an important force

One would think that the Women’s Rights Movement, a Human Rights Movement to be clear here, would have moved our rights and how this nation respects Women along much further than it has. It’s been moving at a snail’s pace and America’s Daughters are taking the rights we have fought for and won for granted.

One would think that for all of the talk we do, Ladies, we’d recognize our true power. It lies in the fierceness of not backing down, and using our power to vote.

Why? Because it’s historically inaccurate, and it’s not how it really happened. There were Civil Rights Movements. There was Women’s Suffrage and a Women’s Rights Movement that is still ongoing. This nation is still going through multiple Civil Rights and Human Rights movements in multiple areas right very now… yes in 2016.

To throw your vote away as if it means nothing, to throw it away in protest, is disowning responsibility for anything that may go wrong later. It’s not a way out. You will still be culpable.

Your vote is YOUR vote as long as you use it. Don’t make excuses to abstain from voting. It’s not only your civic duty, it’s your ethical, moral duty. 

What I really, really do care about in your vote? Please be sure to educate yourself from unbiased sources; fact check. So if you’re going to Fact Check Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, don’t go to either of their web sites. Don’t go to any politically based sites either. Choose neutral sources, and by that I mean “not Facebook memes or info-graphics.”

There ARE unbiased resources out there where you can find the actual facts for each candidate. All of them, all of the political parties. It’s how I narrowed down my choice. I know many of you disagree with my personal choice and you know what? THAT’S OKAY WITH ME!!!! You know why? It’s your opinion, and it’s your vote. YOUR VOTE.

You just have to make sure that you’re there at the polls! We have to use our rights to vote that we fought so very hard for, not so very long ago, or we risk losing all of the rights we’ve fought for. Every single one.

Doing nothing, being complacent, is the same thing as knowing there’s evil about to enter and do evil things and doing nothing to stop it.

VOTE. Just vote. Disagree with me until the cows come home regarding my personal politics. That’s awesome. I don’t care! The election is tomorrow and then it’s over! Then we get to deal with fallout! But for now, for now we just have to commit to voting!

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