Archive for the ‘life’ Category


When it comes to parenting, the books don’t always have the answers. Each book has a special parenting method, and if you just stick with that special method you’ll have amazing children. They’re grow up to be well behaved, respectful, intelligent, daily blessings of joy and love.

Those books are lies.

Most parents figure that out by the time their children are 1-to-2 years old. Sometimes it takes longer, but that’s likely due more to the temperament of the child and not the stellar parenting as followed from the advice in those books. They just might make it to 5 years old, but if that child really is just a totally chill little human being, it takes having a second child with a completely different temperament.

The books were worthless except as kindling until our third child. By then, I had realized that it’s not the book but the child, and every child has a different mother.

Every child has the mother they need because they’re all different people. The books should really only address the care, when it comes down to it. We need books that are honest and straightforward that will be Actually Helpful to new parents of babies, and stressed out parents of toddlers and teens.

Books parents need:

Mostly Judgement-Free Parenting Series

“How to Feed My Baby: Until he’s not hungry any more”

“How to Diaper My Baby: What’s best for your wallet, your tolerance for cutting coupons, your love of Pinterest, and ability to sew”

“The Best Ways to Get Baby to Nap: Learn baby’s sleep patterns, then work around it”

“How to Get Baby on My Schedule: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!”

“Toilet Training by One: Good luck with that one”

“How to Feed a Picky Eater: Give her what she likes”

“Discipline? Yes, always, your child is not your friend or best buddy”

“Discipline: You have more options than ‘spanking’ and here they are”

“Going Back to Work After Baby: Why not, after all Dad gets to and who’s to say that Dad shouldn’t be the stay at home parent anyway?”

“Staying Home/Going to Work After Baby: Budgeting, Care for Baby, Scheduling, Family Time, Let’s Work it Out!”

“How to Prepare for Going to the Hospital for Baby: includes a tear out sheet of “List of People to KEEP OUT OF L & D and Maternity” to give to hospital staff so that you won’t have to be the bad guy to family that you don’t want there!”

“Reasonable Expectations of Success and Mistakes: your child isn’t an extension of you”

“When Friends, Family, and Strangers Offer ‘Well Meaning’ Parenting Advice: Smile and Nod, and other non-violent methods”

“OMG My Teenagers Are Trying to Make Me Go Gray Overnight! and other things parents of three teens have been heard saying”

“Organic and Homemade! the story of the crunchy mom, whose baby ate only organic until he tasted his first Twinkie and realized there was an entire aisle of the supermarket his mom had been hiding from him, and other stories of perfect parenting gone awry”

“How Not to Say the Wrong Thing to My Teens and Make Them Cry, the story of the mom with three daughters, so really you have to know that there probably won’t be a happy ending to this story”

 

 

Yup… I’d have bought those.

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I have good news! Are you interested?

I went to my pain management and spine specialist last Wednesday after work. During the appointment we went over the X-Ray results for my hips and lumbar spine due to the exacerbated pain I’ve had since the fall my beastly dog caused on a walk. There was a concern that my hip fractured or broke.

I’ve mentioned before that my lumbar spine already has bulging discs. The X-ray was for just the lumbar and hips, and since my MRI during the summer, that’s deteriorated, likely due to the fall.

Neither of my hips, which have arthritis, are broken or fractured. That’s the excellent news. The arthritis, however, has also deteriorated and has done so more significantly in my left hip. That’s likely due to the fall.

I’m relieved that there aren’t any fractures. That means that we can take “putting a pin in it”off the table. That’s a huge relief. I guess now I’m wondering what my treatment options are, because I met with the APRN instead of the doctor. When I have pain that, in the moment, is at least a 10 what do I do? I can’t support my body when I’m standing up because the pain is so severe. I feel as if my skeleton is being ripped apart and shattered with a hammer. It’s scary, and it takes my breath away.

Since I’m 42 and never had a bone density test, I’ve requested one to be ordered. I know that it’s been an issue in my family, and with the arthritis, maybe it can help with therapy. I’m already doing aqua-therapy but anything at all that might help relieve this pain and I’m in. The APRN didn’t indicate that the degeneration is severe enough for surgery to repair the arthritis, so I’m guessing that’s not an option right now. And honestly I think that has to be a last resort.

It’s funny, though… my PT for aquatherapy seems to think that surgery with additional PT is preferable to additional medications. She has Fibromyalgia, too, so I’m assuming that she’s aware that every time someone like us has a surgery it further suppresses our immune system because the body has to fight so much harder than is typical to heal, and to fight off even simple infections and illnesses. We also have to cope with having all of the medications administered during a surgery coursing through us for months which affects the medications we’re already on. Anesthetics stay in the body for up to two years, especially when it’s administered in large doses.

I would rather exhaust all other options before considering surgery. Just like before I agreed to try pain medications, I exhausted every other possibility first. And sure… I kicked myself and wondered why I didn’t go to the pain management specialist years sooner when my PCP first suggested it, but this isn’t the same thing. I have a hard enough time healing from paper cuts. 😉

I know, I’m putting the cart before the horse. It was just a conversation I had with my PT on Friday. I’m just trying to work it out in my head a bit. And maybe the APRN didn’t let on how bad it really is. She’s been known to do that.

Oi. I need chocolate. Good chocolate. Better yet, I want someone to give me good chocolate.

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I’d like to clarify something that most writers are missing right now: in order to grab headlines, they’re losing readers interest from even glancing at their very valid points by turning the Civil Rights issues this nation is dealing with into a Liberal and Conservative war. These protests are not Democrats and liberal voters versus Republican and conservative voters (and yes, let’s please assume all other American voters are included in here in the spectrum, okay?).

This is about a majority of Americans who:

  • recognized from the very beginning how dangerous Trump’s vision for a “great” America is
  • recognized almost too late how dangerous he is
  • recognized after they voted for him how dangerous he is

and they’re identifying early on that yes, Mr. Trump is doing everything he can to negatively affect Human Rights and Civil Rights in this country and around the world. They’re speaking out immediately, visibly, and with just cause. They’re showing that even if our votes didn’t count, thanks to GOP and Russian vote tampering and election tampering, our voices count for something now and won’t be turned away.

This country is unifying, even against those who are still whimpering and whining over wondering why all of those millions of marching losers don’t seem to understand that “their” candidate lost and why they just don’t accept it and get over it. That number of whimpering whiners is dwindling.

The reason is because unifying against Trump is a non-partisan issue for the American people. That’s the reason these marches are working. It’s the reason Republican leaders are listening. Their constituents, especially their Republican voters, are marching and writing to them in tandem. They have a reason to pay attention, especially considering many of them are coming up for re-election in only two years.

Now… when it comes to the nominations Trump is putting forth and confirming them, it’s partly partisan, but mostly bigotry and anti-science plus some KKK white supremacy thrown in, but there are Republican officials speaking out more and voting against the nominations. This is important. It means that we’re being heard. It means that maybe they’re afraid of losing votes, sure, but some of them really do see that these are Constitutional issues. Most of the nominations are getting in, but we can hope that the Senate keeps out the rest.

It’s definitely changing regarding the ever-increasingly unstable, unvetted, illegal, unconstitutional, un-American “executive orders.” For the record here, I didn’t like everything President Obama did with his EO’s, but I never once believed he did anything illegal, unconstitutional, or un-American. I believed him to occasionally be misguided and that he needed to be more bi-partisan (or rather non-partisan), as the job of President is no longer partisan. No president is perfect.

Back to the marches.

The marches are non-partisan. These marches are unifying our nation, not splitting it, in spite of the efforts of Mr. Trump and his team of spinners to convince the nation otherwise. His support is dwindling except in the echo chambers of die-hard fans, where they have self-built self-sustaining walls created with years of willful self-denial. No other president in history had, within a week of inauguration, a 51% disapproval rating… the highest disapproval rating for any sitting president.

Anyway, to suggest that the protests are “liberal protests” is divisive. We’re all involved from every party because we’re all invested… at least those of us who voted. I’m still hearing people say,

“He’s not my president. I don’t really care what’s happening. I didn’t even vote. I just have to wait out all of this craziness from all sides for four more years and then everyone will vote for sanity in a third party.”

Yeah… no.

And of course I’ve heard,

“He’s not my fault. I voted Democrat/Third Party. He’s not my president.”

Yeah… no. We kind of did this, granted with the help of Russia and Trump’s team being complicity in all of it. Plus the gerrymandering of the GOP with election sites, and other forms of trying to defraud people out of their right to vote. Oh yes, and in addition to fixing machines in favor of the GOP. Yeah. That’s the kind of president we have. A criminal, a cheater, and a traitor.

During W.Bush’s second term, I was really upset that he was elected that second time. Not nearly as upset as Trump being “elected” because at least W.Bush was actually elected, and I wasn’t livid. I wasn’t depressed or anxious. I got over it, for the most part, in spite of having fits of anger on occasion for the occasional jackass things he did and said. I was pissed about the warmongering of VP Dick Cheney. Even then, W was still my President. He wasn’t a traitor, at least.

Trump… he may be our president, but he didn’t earn it. He didn’t win it. He’s certainly failing at the job and it hasn’t been a month. We’re practically at war with every nation he’s interacted with except for Russia. I mean, for fuck’s sake, Mexico, China, Yemen, and Australia are ready to bomb the shit out of us. Fucking Australia, people. We’re like, BFF’s with Australia and England and here we are, on the outs with Australia. Who’s next, Canada?

Marching in resistance to Donald Trump physically and verbally is about as American and Patriotic as it gets. It’s standing up for ethical and moral values of the highest standard, including Christian values, morals, and ethics. I thought it was kind of ridiculous when people marched against Obama, but that was their right. It WASN’T their right to burn him in effigy. That was just disgusting. Notice, though, no one is burning Trump in effigy. That’s what peaceful protest is all about.

I can assure you, the state of Resistance has nothing to do with crybabies being poor losers that their candidate didn’t win. If that’s what you think this boils down to, then it’s time to start paying attention. It’s time to re-evaluate your ethics and values. If it turns out that the reasons for the marches offend you, then it’s because you’re on the wrong side of history. You’re on the wrong side of patriotism, what it means to be American, and yes, what it means to be Christian and follow in the footsteps of Jesus.

It has everything to do with losing Constitutionally ensured rights; losing rights that are Federally protected. Rights of those who are discriminated against, and need the protection of law in the Constitution. It has to do with the fact that our new pseudo-president is trying to write executive orders, orders that he hasn’t thoroughly vetted or researched or even consulted with the proper specialists and heads of departments over, that would violate the Constitution in order to revoke Civil Rights, health rights, Human Rights, education rights, Disability Rights, Women’s Rights, Veteran’s Rights, Elder Rights, and more.

People who are opposed to these marches, who are offended by them, don’t realize that these marches are for their benefit. They only see that “their” candidate is being “attacked” and still, the tired old,

“What a bunch of losers, just get over it already. Move on.”

and the ever lovely,

“Obama wiped his ass with the Constitution every day.”

Of course what they really  mean by that little gem is that President Obama clarified people’s rights and made certain that people’s rights were protected under the Constitution. When that happens, it’s a good thing for everyone. It’s unlawful actions that try to revoke rights.

It’s incredibly difficult to obtain rights. They must be fought for with sweat, blood, and tears by those whose rights aren’t recognized. It takes more than decades of literal fighting and fighting in the courts… it takes centuries. Actual, literal centuries. And when those rights are finally recognized and then protected in our Constitution, we have this deranged faux president with absolutely no morals or ethics, who has stated that they simply get in the way of what he wants, who thinks he can write executive orders to take away anyone’s rights that he pleases. He thinks he can simply dismantle whatever he wants, and everyone will be pleased as punch.

When that’s not the case, he attempts media blackout. He gaslights the media and credible journalists. He tries to discredit every single well respected individual that speaks out against him so that his fans call them traitors.

Traitors. Which is funny, since he’s the one who committed and is committing treason. That alone is a Federal offense. But hey, we’re living in an alternate universe this year.

“Speaking out against criticism of the President is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.” Theodore Roosevelt

 

Which is why it’s so damned funny to me that people are offended on Trump’s behalf that men and women are marching against Trump. It’s funny that his voters fell for so much of his obvious lies and ignored his crimes. He proved throughout his entire campaign just how incompetent he was. Daily. He proved it even more AFTER HE WAS ELECTED, and it worsened day by day the closer we got to that farce of an inauguration. Since the election, many many many of his voters are regretting what they did to this country, their contribution to the damage… but there are too many who are still willingly stuffing their mouths with sawdust flavored with arsenic, and calling it Apple Cinnamon Cheerios.

The traitors are those who still defend this deranged traitor that calls himself president. So no, I’m still not over it.

Otherwise, great opinion piece below.

 


Source: Think the liberal protests are big? Just wait. Eric Zorn, Chicago Tribune

White House chief of staff Reince Priebus noted Sunday that the huge protests at some of the nation’s airports over the weekend were out of proportion to the practical effect of President Donald Trump‘s executive order on immigration.

“The fact of the matter is 325,000 people from foreign countries came into the United States” on Saturday, Priebus told NBC’s “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd. “And 109 people were detained for further questioning.”

That number grew slightly by the end of the day, but reflected a general truth that ought to be sobering for the administration — the vast majority of protesters didn’t know the detainees and didn’t have friends or family connected to one of the seven predominantly Muslim nations targeted in the crackdown on immigrants and refugees.

They descended by the thousands on international terminals coast to coast mostly to raise alarm on behalf of strangers and to object to the abdication of key American values that a ban on refugees represents.

Similarly, none of the millions who marched and rallied for women’s rights the previous weekend had yet lost anything or suffered a single deprivation on account of Trump. How could they have? He’d been president for only one day.

In other words, most of the anti-Trump protests so far have been over symbolism and omens.

So just imagine what’s going to happen if or when the largely hypothetical becomes real and the abstract becomes personal.

•If or when the numbers of people turned away from our borders, detained or deported grows from the hundreds into the tens of thousands.

•If or when millions of people lose their health insurance policies after Obamacare is repealed.

•If or when Roe v. Wade is overturned and states begin outlawing abortion.

•If or when we begin to go backward on LGBTQ rights and anti-gay discrimination is enshrined as a religious right.

•If or when prices or taxes rise to pay for an unnecessary border wall between the U.S. and Mexico and for Trump’s misbegotten trade wars.

•If or when public education begins to disappear in major urban centers.

•If or when strict voter-ID laws, with their racially discriminatory effects, sweep the red states.

If any of the above hypotheticals become reality, these recent protests will seem quaint in comparison.

I wouldn’t go so far as to call this the Liberal Spring, but make no mistake: After eight, sleepy, nearly torpid years of hoping that President Barack Obama and his wealthiest supporters would protect their interests, members of the left — progressives, Democrats — have awakened with a roar.

Critics complained that the Women’s March on Washington was incoherent and diffuse, an airing of various concerns without an identifiable set of demands. Actually, though, the message of those rallies was quite clear: We’re not cowering in the face of the Trump agenda. We’re determined, we’re energized and when Trump crosses the line, we’ll be right back out here with demonstrations that’ll make those tea party rallies of 2010 look like Tuesday morning gatherings at the dog park.

Don’t miss the idealism. Many of the marchers, like many of the airport protesters, don’t feel directly threatened by Trumpism. They’re straight, white people of some means who have decent health insurance and probably won’t be alive long enough to be mortally sickened by the poisonous air and water in a deregulated America.

These protesters organized, made signs, traveled and took time out of their lives to make a show of their beliefs on behalf of others now that they’ve been poked by Trump’s statements and his early moves in the White House.

After ineptly playing defense and squabbling internally during Obama’s two terms, the left is back on offense, angry and activated.

The evidence is not just in the crowds and first-time protesters. The American Civil Liberties Union reported taking in $24.2 million in online donations over the weekend, more than six times the total of online donations the organization usually gets in an entire year!

And the real action, the real outrages, haven’t even really started.

Trump likes to talk about leading a “movement” because he galvanized just enough disillusioned, credulous voters to eke out a victory in the Electoral College over an opponent nearly as unpopular as he is.

But he’s about to see what a real movement looks like.

 

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It’s Inauguration Day 2017 in America. What’s the appropriate way to react, or how to feel when you’re not among those who voted for someone … well… for Trump?

It’s still not to simply accept it. It’s not to just move on. It’s time to defy all that Trump and Pence stand for.

Acceptance and moving on can never occur when Inauguration Day is placing a criminal and traitor as a dictator into the place of President. Someone who doesn’t value all lives equally; who doesn’t value anyone except himself.

The appropriate response is, I’m finding, to pray.

The inauguration is occurring right now.

And so I’m praying for my fellow Americans. I’m praying for my fellow Americans who did not vote for this unpresidential domestic threat nor the Russian threat that this criminal has invited into our nation.

I’m praying for all Americans that Trump doesn’t value. As he listens to Senator Schumer discuss America’s great values, Trump sits there with a frown, rocking back and forth, and instead of sitting up straight with rapt attention, he slouches and looks around behind him, shaking his head.

I’m praying as I discover that police are using pepper spray at peaceful protest marches.

I’m praying as Pence dares to stand up there and take the oath of Vice President to protect this country, even as he’s been leading the charge to dismantle human rights and civil rights in his very own country in the past weeks.

I’m praying as Trump has the utter gall to take an oath he’s never had the intention of keeping, as his entire campaign was about destroying the Constitution… his cavalier words that the Constitution means nothing to him during his campaign. His only allegiance to any country, to any god, is to his Trump Tower, himself, and money. I will not stand. I will not honor him. I will not accept.

I’m praying, because there’s no way possible that this is God’s will as so many dare to claim. This was the doing of GOP fraud, Russia, and Trump. I’m praying because to celebrate this farce would be to become an unpatriotic traitor to America.

This is a tragic, sad day. His words have no meaning. His oath has no meaning. He lies even as he gives his dictatorial acceptance speech. Even as his tiny baby hands look even more tiny and pudgy than usual, and his usual healthy day-glo orange is muddier than usual.

He dared stand up there and said, “Make America great again.” A nation that has always, always been great and now has a real stain against it. An unpatriotic criminal and traitor is now our fake President.

Only America and her most fragile citizens, her citizens that must be protected by Federal Laws must be prayed for. Those who are discriminated against regularly for their sex, gender, religion or lack of religion, their low income, their ethnicity, race, color, national original, disability, age, pregnancy, and even genetic information or political party.

I pray.

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Up front, I’m Catholic. This entry is about education and freedom of religion.

Darth Pence wants to do to “reform” our public schools. I bow to the fact that some changes ought to be made, the main one being to pay teachers what they’re worth and put more funding into education so that we don’t continue to have a nation that doesn’t value intellectualism or education. That’s not at all what Darth Pence plans to do in his reform of public schools.

Darth Pence wants to unschool our children and remove science classes. He wants to replace science with teachings from the Bible.

I kid you not.

Biggest headline: Darth Pence, with the help of Trump’s cabinet pick Betsy DeVos, plan to evict the Big Bang and Evolutionary Theories from the public school curriculum and replace them with Biblical Creationism.

This is offensive regardless of your political affiliation or religious affiliation. It’s offensive no matter the end of the conservative or liberal end of the spectrum you fall. In spite of the smoke and mirrors, this has never, ever been Democrats versus Republicans, nor has it been Liberals versus Conservatives. The value of keeping Church and State separate is a value of all major parties that are seen as legitimate except for one.

It’s a Tea Party value, the Tea Party who are a bunch of jokers that know nothing about politics and are trying to destroy it from the inside out (admittedly, especially since. A bunch of evangelistic biblical literalists who are destroying the christian faith and the reputation of all Christians.

For a person of faith, like me, it’s about being balanced, faithful to God, being a better mother, wife, person, being truthful in how I live my life, respecting the world I live in, respecting the people I share the Earth with, being in awe of the Earth my God created, and loving this life. And in order to do that and to teach my family how to do that, I don’t need some judgmental, creepy, selfish, criminal, vile, wannabe, fake-ass President and his sidekick VP dismantling our schools, our special education programs, and our religion.

 

How I choose to indoctrinate my children is my choice, with my husband. Where it occurs is our choice. I want them indoctrinated in our family church that we carefully chose, and in our home. Indoctrination is to be fully controlled by us. The separation of Church and State is to be held as a sacred value.

If my children wish to pray before a test, or they wish to pray during their free time, they’re allowed due to the freedom of religion. The key is that they don’t try to convert anyone or “witness” at school (well, as Catholics we don’t do that as a rule); during free time at school they can discuss each others religions to get to know each other, and they can pray together if they want. That’s fantastic. But no class led prayer. No indoctrination.

If children … students … are to learn about religion and their creation stories in a public school there are Humanities courses or World Religions courses, Social Studies, and they teach “This is what this religion is about, what they do,” ie. the facts of various religions without commentary of the validity of any of them. If it’s indoctrination and proselytizing, then that belongs in private schools.

For those who are devoutly Roman Catholic, there’s some good news

Numerous sources confirm that Pope Francis has stated that he accepts the Theories of Evolution and the Big Bang (go to article below, and then click it).

And that is awesome. Essentially, Pope Francis recognizes that behind the Scientific Theories, there is God. Behind all of the science, there is God speaking to us and guiding us. It means he’s continued to move the Church back into the light, back towards God and away from the Dark Ages that Benedict was so determined to plunge us into. Pope Francis is a beacon of hope.

 

The theories of evolution and the Big Bang are real and God is not “a magician with a magic wand”, Pope Francis has declared. Speaking at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Pope made comments which experts said put an end to the “pseudo theories” of creationism and intelligent design that some argue were encouraged by his predecessor, Benedict XVI.

Source: Pope Francis declares evolution and Big Bang theory are real and God is not ‘a magician with a magic wand’ | The Independent

 

 

Me again.

Science explains the “how.” Religion explains the “why.”

I’m sure some of you disagree with me. You might say,

“They’re ‘just’ theories. They can’t prove it. Science is its own religion, and you can’t trust it! You’re rejecting the BIBLE AND GOD! YOU’RE JUST A LIBTARD!”

When I’m feeling generous, I don’t assume that those people I hear that statement from are also rabid anti-vaxxers and give them the benefit of the doubt. 😉 I instead assume that they’re open to listening to reason. I don’t assume that they’re Sophophobic (have a fear of learning and being educated).

They’re actually not “just” theories. When someone dismisses a Theory out of hand, they’re forgetting middle school and high school science when they learned about the Scientific method and how to write a lab report. It was such a valuable experience learning those things, because it taught us how to approach the world. It was supposed to teach us how to be curious and question, how to touch things and be involved in the world. It taught us that we didn’t have to be scientists to value science.

Most people seem to think that a theory is vague and maybe possibly could be a fact if there were enough facts to support the idea… to support the opinion. They think that a hypothesis mean “to guess the result of an experiment.” I thought that maybe going back to basics would be a good idea for a minute or two.

A hypothesis isn’t an educated guess. It is a tentative explanation for an observation, phenomenon, or scientific problem that can be tested by further investigation. Once you do the experiment and find out if it supports the hypothesis, it becomes part of scientific theory.

http://www.sciencekidsathome.com/science_fair/what-is-a-hypothesis.html

A hypothesis doesn’t become a Theory, but can contribute.

Next we have Theories, with tested results that can be repeated and WILL BE repeated. A Theory is something that we know is true even if aspects of the Theory change due to obtaining new information, new interpretations, or a change in some information. A Theory can be voted on in the Scientific Community. A Theory IS NOT an opinion and takes precedence over opinions, as a Theory is in fact, factual.

A scientific theory is an explanation for why things work or how things happen. Scientists develop theories based on their observations of the world around them.Theories are based on ideas that can be tested. Theories are not speculative, or based on a guess.

kids.britannica.com/elementary/article-544886/scientific-theory?

 

Finally, we have the Scientific Law. A Scientific Law is so certain that it’s absolute and unchanging. You can’t vote on it, create a new interpretation of it, or change it in any way. It’s a description of observable phenomenon and doesn’t require explanation. It can be the basis of creating new Theories. Theories don’t become Laws, and neither do Hypotheses.

A scientific law is a statement based on repeated experimental observations that describes some aspects of the universe. A scientific law always applies under the same conditions, and implies that there is a causal relationship involving its elements.

 

If you’re Roman Catholic, and you trust in the plans of God and how he’s using Pope Francis, have hope. If you’re not Catholic, but Pope Francis is still a cool dude in your eyes, hopefully this gives you hope that Christians are not represented by those who claim christianity in the government. At least there’s something positive from 2016 moving into 2017.

The plans of Darth Pence for Education, and Trump’s cabinet pick for Education, Betsy DeVos, should upset you greatly no matter what. If you’re not upset, then you should at least be concerned or moved enough to want to write to your State Representatives, your Senator, your Governor. Be your own activist, be your childrens’ advocate. If you want the future of our country to be in the hands of godly, educated men and women then speak up. If you want your nation to be in the hands of educated men and women, speak up. We don’t have to just shut up and take it.

We don’t have to just accept it. We don’t have to just get over it. We need to do something, because he’s been following through with everything he said he would and he’s not even President yet. We’re not talking soundbytes. These are the “great things” and big changes he was talking about.

 

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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.

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I have a request. If your opinions and feelings are different from those of your friends, family, and neighbors please remember that they’re people just like you. I don’t care if they have a different political viewpoint; a different religion; different ethnic cultural background; a different parenting philosophy. Chances are that you still have something in common with those people.

People are not disposable. It’s so easy for us to click a button online and stop seeing them in our newsfeed; block someone; or “unfriend” them if we dislike them enough. It’s a lot harder in real life where you have to face consequences for your own contributions to the negativity in the relationship.

Treat people the way you’d like to be treated. It’s not a difficult concept. It costs NOTHING to be kind to other people. It costs nothing to cast a smile to someone who may be having a difficult day. It costs nothing to give an initial benefit of the doubt before turning your back.

I don’t really care if anyone has a differing opinion than I have. That’s great. Have it. It doesn’t hurt my feelings that there are ideas, thoughts, emotions, opinions, ideations, needs, wants, wonts, etc. that are different. Other points of view are important. There can even be valid points on both sides of the same argument. Not everything is a competition. Choosing sides doesn’t mean one side is good and one is evil. I believe that most people are inherently good, and that only a rare few are actually literally evil.

There ARE times when we have to take a stand and do what’s right, but destroying relationships isn’t the way to do it. Becoming the very thing you claim to hate the most isn’t the way to do it. There are ways to stand up for yourself and your causes that aren’t harmful to others and make a good example to those others and to your children. Be kind and respectful in how you express your difference in opinion to others, and show respect for others’ differences. You don’t have to feel it, but you still need to show it. You live in society, and you therefore agree to live by the rules of society.

Free speech? It doesn’t mean what you think it does. Just as you may be able to speak your mind, so do others… and when you speak your mind, how you speak your mind matters and that means that other people have the right to respond to you. You have the right to speak, but you also have an obligation to receive whatever consequence comes from it from friends, family, coworkers, acquaintances, and others in society even if what you say or do isn’t illegal. There are still some things that are socially wrong, morally and ethically wrong… and sometimes that might actually mean that you should consider that your side isn’t the just, right, good side. I know that I’m not always right. Hey, I can accept that. We do all make mistakes. Not all sides are always valid, even in my world view. Some points of view shouldn’t be tolerated and yet… and yet there’s still a way for those points of view to be rebuffed.

If you want to change the world you live in, then you must enact change in a way that is meaningful. Violence, whether physical or verbal, is never an appropriate way to enact positive change, and it’s never a path to peace. What leads to peace is a change in conversation and a willingness to change attitudes and behaviors. Social change leads to peace. That starts within each and every one of us. For me, that’s maintaining a conversation and connection with God.

You may still believe anything you choose, but be peaceful. Respectful. Use meaningful conversation. Behave in a way socially so that others trust you. These things are so important.

So, you don’t have to be “with” me on several issues. That’s okay. I’ll still love you. We’ll likely agree on many, many other things.

 

Mahatma Ghandi quote

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