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Thursday, May 17, 2018

We Must Stand Strong and VOTE!




It has been over a year and a half since I have been able to write.   I have been distraught over the “election” of Trump; not only because of his obvious mental illness, complete incompetence, clear ties to Russia and their hacking of our election and lack of intellectual curiosity, but also because of what his election signified about my fellow Americans.  The anger, bigotry and fear they must feel is truly beyond my comprehension.  Why would anyone feel that they deserve a giant piece of the pie while others starve?  How can anyone not see the injustice and ingrained bigotry that some in our country face daily? Many of these same folks’ talk of being a Christian nation.  But this is not what Christianity is about, but rather it is a triangulation of the Christian faith for profit ~ as most Christians I know are NOT of this ilk, most are concerned for the rights of their fellow man no matter their religion or race or ethnicity.  However, this is the faith-based group that gets all the press, that hogs Fox “News” talking points and that stands tall on some righteous pillar belittling others to lift themselves and gain power by manipulating fear, bigotry and hate.

I have tried to listen to those who support this narcissistic, arrogant President, but all they do is repeat the lies and distortions pushed by Fox “news”.  They not only don’t care for facts if they disagree with them, they don’t allow those facts to penetrate their bubble.  Anything negative about their president is “fake news”. It is as if their very existence, their survival, depends on the validity of the narrative that has been injected into their minds by those who have no care or concern for what actually IS!!  Facts to them are like water to the wicked witch……contact will melt them away……..

The entire republican party must be complicit with this horror in order to allow it to continue.  I thought it was frightening when republicans chose and backed Sarah Palin, an obvious dimwit, to be Vice President.  Maybe it was her deep interest in reading “all of them” when asked what she read that “got” them.  In reality, she was just a babbling idiot with a pretty exterior.  She was the senseless person du jour used by the republicans to completely break the ice which had been chipped by George W. Bush, to continue the search for the perfectly ill-equipped candidate that republicans could use to force  their agenda, benefiting those at the top, onto all of us.  This plan involved firing up republicans who are republicans because they hate…..the white supremacists, the Nazis, your run of the mill bigot, etc.  Those folks who blame others who look differently or speak differently for everything that seems wrong in their country.  Those who look back with nostalgia to a time that only existed in their thoughts.  The republican party, like other parties in other countries, knows the usefulness of garnering the rabid support of those whose hate justifies their being.  These brainwashed souls hold this hate as such a vital part of who they are that they will fight to support anyone who justifies their beliefs no matter how horrific they are, no matter how immoral they are, no matter how incompetent they are.  Since Trump hates who they hate, Trump is absolutely correct when he says he could shoot someone in Times Square and they would still not only support him they would love him even more!  This is exemplified by the evangelists who support a man with 5 children from 3 wives and with multiple NDAs to silence women he’s slept with in order to hide his immorality.

What does this say about the “normal” republicans who, whether in Congress or just your average guy on the street, still stand with Trump?  The fact that they are willing to support such a self proclaimed sleazy man (the Access Hollywood tape) when they claim “family values” at every turn, the fact that they are willing to overlook Trump’s racism, the fact that they don’t care about his continuously exposed and growing ties to Russia, what does this show?  Hypocrisy for some....team spirit for others, or, are most of the republicans in Congress so complicit or involved with the Russians that they are in self-protection mode?  Are they using Fox “news” as a vehicle to rally their willingly brainwashed base to keep their secrets secret? 

If this is all permitted to continue, if our institutions don’t stand up to this threat, we are truly doomed as a nation.  I remember wondering how anyone could support George W. Bush.  He was obviously in over his head and obviously being manipulated by forces with greater knowledge and stronger ideology.  But 'wow', George W. Bush had some credentials, some sense of history and respect for our institutions.  Now I look back at his administration and realize that at least I didn’t feel in danger for our country as a democracy. 

Our Constitution is a living document.  As with all living things, it can become ill and it can die.  We have to fight within our system to ensure that those in power do their job and keep our Constitution alive.  We, as citizens, must stay engaged and slog through the mud to clean out the contaminants that are choking us.  Once this danger is removed, then and only then can we pick up the fight for equal rights, the environment, equal pay, fair healthcare, upgraded infrastructure and workplace rights.  But for now, our fight is to keep our Constitution alive and cure the disease of hate and greed.  We the People must keep motivated to VOTE OUT those who are willing to destroy our democracy by whatever ugly means they can for quarterly profits!!

I look forward to cheering as a clean bill of health is given so that we can regain our strength, stand tall, and once again be proud of the United States of America as a beacon for all that is good and aspirational in this world.











Thursday, November 17, 2016

Defeat





I didn’t vote for Donald J. Trump.  I would never have voted for such a damaged man to be President of the United States, even if he had run as a Democrat, the party to which I belong. 

We may take small comfort in the fact that Hillary Clinton won, at this point, over 1 million votes MORE than djt, and that number is rising.  But that fact, along with $5, will buy you a cup of coffee.  It is comforting, but meaningless.  Our system elects our Presidents through the Electoral College.  Fighting for that to change is definitely on the list of things we need to do, but it won’t change the reality we wake up to today.

What REALLY troubles me, aside from the fact that djt is President-elect….(gagging), is that 46% of America did NOT vote.  Why?  How can that be?  This election was covered tirelessly.  The media, which was completely inept in the importance of what they covered, certainly kept us informed of what minutia the Donald was up to on a minute-by-minute basis.  Their consistent coverage gave him more free airtime than probably any other candidate in our country’s history.  It certainly propelled him through the republican primaries when other candidates with records and policies were called names and disrespected by trump.  The media thought that was a laugh riot.

Then, their coverage of an email server…. what a ridiculous story, took the headlines.  The fact that most of the emails were Hillary asking her staff to “print this” for her, or were asking to go out for a crème brulee…. that didn’t matter.  Hillary did a stupid thing, but let’s be real, an almost 70 year old woman doesn’t handle her own IT decisions.  Whoever advised her of this, knowing she wanted to run for President, was amazingly stupid.  But it was just that, stupid.  She never used it for wrong, as the constant investigations proved over and over again.  The media, however, made it look sinister and the cooperation of the FBI, 11 days before the election, certainly didn’t help.  But, all that in stride…there was no reason for ANYONE to Not VOTE!!  You couldn’t possibly ignore this election!  Why wouldn’t you want your voice to be heard?  Our voices together are what make our country great.  By not voicing yours, our country will now be diminished.  Hate and bigotry will rule.  Fear and ignorance will be pushed; all this because so many didn’t vote when so very much was on the line. 

Now, to be fair, Hillary was an uninspiring candidate and I could go on and on about how the Democratic primary was largely at fault.   Hillary just isn’t a good candidate.  She carries with her so much baggage, rightly or wrongly…but none of her baggage compared to the complete luggage set that trump packed.  His KKK backers, his sexual predatory bragging, his lack of knowledge about international affairs, his relationship with Putin, his talk of massive deportation, his bringing the woman Bill Clinton had affairs with to a debate, his constant sniffing at the debates, his stiffing of his creditors, his bankruptcies, his not showing his taxes…I could go on and on. 


So, djt will be President winning less than half the popular vote, which is actually made up of about half of our voting eligible population.  Trump will be President with the support of probably little over 35% of the population.  This seems to be the same 35% that believe President Obama is Muslim (not that there’s anything wrong with it if he was, but he’s not) and that watch Fox “news”.  This is sick.

He will say he has a mandate.  He does not.  He will install hateful, ignorant men to head all aspects of government.  He will have hate, Bannon, as his right-hand man and booster.  Trump has zero experience and less intellectual curiosity…. as a matter of fact, this election was his first job interview ever.  Tweeting is his “fav” method of communication. 

Born with a silver spoon in his mouth, he married three women, cheated on at least two of them, (probably all three) and eight years ago he was strongly against everything he is now for…what adult changes that dramatically in such a short time?  Answer:  No one.  He hasn’t changed…. his one philosophy is doing whatever strikes him, whatever benefits him, at the moment ~ not what benefits you or me or even his supporters….solely what benefits him and his privileged family. 

Let’s hope that at this very moment the reality of his powerful situation finally affords him some sense of responsibility.  Do I believe it will?  No.  Why would I?  He has NEVER taken responsibility for anything he has said or done.  He thinks he can do with others whatever he wants out of a false sense of superiority and entitlement.  He will allocate responsibility in his administration to ‘yes’ men so that he can then blame those same ‘yes’ men when it all goes so horribly wrong….which it will, because his ideas are flawed and hateful and history already proved them wrong.  He will boast when something seems to be going right…even Hitler had successes before he eventually brought his country to its’ knees.  Please, let’s not give trump the freedom to enact the horrific policies he is about to push.  The 65% of us that disagree with pretty much everything this man has spewed this last year and half need to remain engaged, vocal, strong and informed. 

I vow, here and now, to not let this election ruin everything so many have worked for these many decades.  We will not allow Donald to damage the environment, track Muslims, build a friggin wall, or be bffs with Putin.  We will be trump’s worst nightmare as for once in his 70 years of life, he will have people ready to call him out for what he is….a frightened, sad man with lots of gold, but no soul.  We have to work hard, within the system, to expose and negate the actions of trump.  It will be tough because the media will not remain focused unless we keep them so.


Defeat when we have the numbers on our side will not stand for long.  We have to fight this situation with all the legal means we presently have (before he tries to take them away) because we truly are fighting for our very survival. 

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

A Wonderful Dance

                        


My son's wedding is now over a month ago.  He and his beautiful wife are back home from their honeymoon in Iceland.  They had an absolutely breathtaking time and I am glad they went and happy they are home safely.

Before the wedding, I wrote a blog about choosing a song for the Mother/Son dance. I have to now say, the moment was even more than I could have hoped.  During the dance, looking in my son's eyes, holding him in my arms as I've done from the moment he was born until this precious moment, the world around me truly didn't exist.  I forgot about all the people watching us and was lost in an overwhelming, forever connection. The love and pride I have for my Michael is truly never-ending.  His compassion, his thoughtfulness, his consideration, his intelligence and his loyalty all shine through.

I promised in the blog before his wedding I would let you in on the song we chose to dance to afterward.  The time is here.  

The song was "Have I Told You Lately That I Love You" sung by Rod Stewart (written by Van Morrison).  

The song can be heard by clicking the following link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQ4NAZPi2js

In my texts to my children, I tell them multiple times how much I love them.  Michael once said something to me on the lines of, other Mom's don't tell their children 'I love you' in a lifetime as often as I say it in one email.

I can't help it.  I was never good at hiding my feelings.

I will let the song speak for itself. I hope you enjoy.

Michael......have I told you lately that I love you?  You fill my heart with gladness and take away all my sadness.....ease my troubles, that's what you do.


Sunday, May 22, 2016

Why Hillary Clinton makes me angrier than Donald Trump…and why I’m voting for her anyway. ~ A special blog written by my son!





After reading my son's thoughts on this year's election, I thought it was tremendously important for others to see how so many of us view the 2016 Presidential election.  I hope you take the time to read this beautifully written essay written by Michael~

This has been a strange election year for a number of reasons, mostly due to the absurdity of candidates that the Republicans have put forward, but also due to the rise of Bernie Sanders. I started following Bernie around June of last year, and my first thought was, “I’m so glad Clinton won’t run unopposed! A primary challenger will make her a stronger candidate to run against the Republicans.” Then, something amazing happened. I started listening to Bernie Sanders speak…and I heard everything I’ve wanted to hear for my entire adult life which I thought was impossible to say in American politics: We should have single payer healthcare, tuition free public college, a livable minimum wage, guaranteed sick and family leave, etc…I could go on for pages. I always thought that the things I believed in would never gain traction in this country, in a sense, I felt alone. Then Bernie came along, and with millions of followers together, I didn’t feel alone anymore. There is a sizable group of people in America that do believe what I believe, and it feels great. In short, I have known since the first time I went to Europe in 2008 that America is not the shining city on the hill that we were taught about in school. We are not the greatest country in the world, but WE CAN BE! We can provide the things that Europeans consider to be basic human rights. The only thing stopping us is our own pessimism. So I fell in love with Bernie’s policies, talked about him to people I knew and spread the word, donated (Maybe a bit too much for someone who makes what I make) to his campaign. 

There is another side to this however: Hillary Clinton. I grew up thinking (And still do think) that Bill Clinton was one of the best Presidents of the modern era. His wife, however, is someone I have never been a fan of. Back in 2008, I was originally a supporter of John Edwards. Despite what he has done since, he was the first one on the national stage to be talking about income inequality, what he called “Two Americas” in 2008. I supported him in my first ever Presidential campaign, but he was a fringe candidate and didn’t last long. Luckily for me, when he dropped out, there was another candidate that I had an enormous amount of respect and admiration for, a young senator named Barack Obama. I had no trouble switching to the Obama campaign in 2008, because I loved him just as much as Edwards. I was not a sore loser, I did not withhold my vote, and I happily campaigned for Obama in 2008 and 2012. If I could accept the fact that my candidate lost in the primaries in 2008 and get behind another Democrat when I was just a kid, I don’t think my reservations about doing it now are about being pouty, spoiled, or having a temper tantrum. It’s democracy, the one with the most votes wins, and Hillary is going to win the primary. The truth is, now that we are down to Hillary Clinton vs. Republicans, I realize that for the first time, there is no candidate that I can turn to and think “I respect and admire this person”.

Why do I not admire Hillary Clinton? I’m a Democrat and so is she. I’m a feminist, and so is she. I’m an environmentalist, and so is she. I do believe that she has faced an unprecedented amount of criticism and scrutiny, much of it being due to the fact that she is a woman. I want to see the first woman President. I think that would be an enormous step forward for the country on a cultural level. However, I want the first woman President to be someone I admire, respect, and believe in. Unfortunately, no matter how much I try to convince myself, that woman is not Hillary Clinton. Hillary was not with us in the fight against the Patriot Act and the Iraq war, until they were proven disastrous. She was not with us in the fight for LGBT rights, until it was already popular nationwide. She was not with us in the fight against trade deals like TPP, until polls came out saying Democrats didn’t want it. She was not with us in the fight against the Keystone pipeline, until the left pushed her to be. All of this adds together to make a disturbing trend of things that progressives hold dear that Hillary has fought against, only to come around as soon as it is politically favorable. The honest truth is that I WANT to believe her when she says she’s a progressive, but when she says in front of a different group of people that she is a centrist, it’s hard to believe her. I WANT to believe in her, but I don’t.  

This is where I get to the meat of my rant. If Hillary Clinton votes with Bernie Sanders 93% of the time, it should be a no-brainer for me in this election. Unfortunately, it’s more complicated than that. Like George Takei said in his fantastic video I posted to my facebook, the fight between Bernie and Hillary is like a family squabble. The problem is, that’s why it’s so hard for me to come over to her. When your enemy does something to spite you, nothing changes: you still hate them, they still hate you, and none of your previous misconceptions have been challenged. However, when someone of your own family, a friend, or a loved one betrays you, it cuts much deeper. It’s much harder to forget, and it hurts a lot more. This is why I dislike Hillary Clinton so much. It hurts to see a DEMOCRAT up there saying we can’t make the minimum wage a livable salary, that we can’t change anything about the horrendous prices of university, that we can’t change the campaign finance system destroyed by citizen’s united in 2010, that we can’t ban fracking, and that the Iraq war was just a whoopsie-daisy rather than a complete bastardization of everything America claims to be. These are all progressive liberal staples, and ones that progressives should be champions of, not giving up before the fight begins. So yes, Hillary Clinton is not my enemy, she’s family, which is why it hurts so much when she betrays me.

So if I think of Hillary Clinton as a person who personally betrayed me and my ideals, how could I vote for her? I won’t lie, it’s hard, but there are two words that should get everyone to the voting booth in November: Donald Trump. Donald Trump is a con man, racist, misogynist, xenophobe, narcissist, sociopath. Donald Trump is the absolute personification of everything that’s wrong with America. He’s a pseudointellectual bully who would not hesitate to use force to get his way. I feel dirty for even mentioning his name, but that’s how far gone the Republican party is. I don’t even need to get into specifics here. If I need to list reasons to you why Trump is a national disgrace, you’re already a lost cause.  

Overall, I’m left with a choice: Do I vote for someone who I’ve despised for my entire life, and is the worst of America incarnate? Do I vote for someone who I feel has betrayed the very people who helped elevate her to the position she’s in now? Do I abstain from voting? Vote for a 3rd party candidate for some misguided “Protest vote” that no one will ever see or care about? The truth is, there is no good option for me, or any of the progressives out there who truly want America to join the EU in the 21st century.


Welcome to the 2016 general election America. It’s rotten, it’s a disgrace, it’s a betrayal of most of the ideals I hold dear, and it will inevitably be a small (Or large) step backwards in the ongoing fight for America’s progression forward. It’s a terrible decision to make, but sit down and take your medicine progressives. It tastes bitter as hell…Hillary 2016.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The Right Song



My son, Michael, is getting married in June. 

Weddings are beautiful when you are a guest and you see the couple, so in love, so excited about starting their lives together as a married couple.  However, as I learned watching my daughter get married, they are an entirely deeper, heart-filling experience when it is your own child up there exchanging vows.  The hopes and dreams you hold for this new Mr. and Mrs. fills your universe.  Your soul expands with a joy that is all encompassing and overwhelming. 

Here is this person, this beautiful, loving, caring person that you raised and nurtured beginning one of the most joyful, hopefully everlasting, relationships that life offers.  I think back to all the experiences my husband have shared and I can only hope that my children’s’ spouses are always there for them, in good times and in tough times, because life is full of both, as my husband has been there for me.  Through all my goofiness, silliness, and over-protective worrying quirks, he has stood by me.  No one is perfect, but having a partner that willingly accepts those quirks, even when they may make him a bit exasperated at times, is really what this special, unique partnership is all about.   

Knowing how emotional I am going to be at my son’s wedding has always been an accepted fact.  Just as my daughter and I have an exceptionally close relationship; my son and I do too.  I am very lucky to have a son who is willing to discuss his interests, his goals, his dreams, and his aspirations.  We have always shared fun times….from the times when he would so seriously discuss his imaginary friends, starting with Momboweeze, Peekels etc, to collecting beanie babies, to playing Mario Kart when he was younger, up to the present when we share some of the most heartfelt discussions over politics, his deeply meaningful work, the love of his life, and anything else under the sun.  My son brightens my world and fills my heart with a love that is impossible to put into words. 

At my daughter’s wedding, my husband had the chance to dance with her, the bride.  I loved every minute of watching them, holding each other, images of him cradling her in his arms when she was a newborn merged into this one dance.  He found a song that perfectly described the emotions of that moment.  Now, it will be my turn to have that special dance with my Michael.  The song has to be perfect.  I know that probably no one else will listen to the words, but I will, and I want the words to resonate with my son and convey to him the love, respect, and pride I feel whenever I think of him.

I know that everyone has thought my search for this special song has been a bit over the top.  I emailed a DJ I know, and a very special singer, song writer and asked them to pour over songs that could possibly relate to a Mother/Son Dance.  It is amazing to me that there is such little to choose from in the millions of songs that are out there!!  Most are about romantic love, or there are songs about Fathers and Sons or Sons to Mother…..but they usually involve important passages, like in the song “Sadie” by the Spinners: 

Early one Sunday morning
Breakfast was on the table
There was no time to eat
She said to me, "Boy, hurry to Sunday school"
Filled with her load of glory
We learned the holy story"

These lyrics have nothing to do with our relationship, even though he did go to Hebrew School on Sunday, this just didn’t pertain. My search continued for months from songs such as “You are the Sunshine of My Life” by Stevie Wonder, to “You’ll be in My Heart” by Phil Collins…..”How Deep is the Ocean” sung by Barbara Streisand and her son Jason Gould, to finally “Because you Loved Me”, by Celine Dion.  They are all beautiful songs, but none felt right.  They all had an important passage or two that just didn’t pertain or make sense.  I was feeling disappointed but refused to give up the search.  I knew that my hours of pouring through music on YouTube and asking everyone would not be in vain.

Words are so important to me.  Words can heal or destroy, they can empower or hinder, they are powerful and meaningful and in the midst of this special day, Michael's wedding day, words need to be filled with love and importance. This moment, this dance, when I get to hold my son in my arms, I want to make him know and understand how absolutely vital he is to my life.  I want him to feel how deeply I admire him, how strongly I support him, how proud I am of him, how unconditionally I love him.

I have found my song.  After months of searching and believing it hadn’t been written yet, I stumbled across it on my way to work yesterday morning.  I was listening to talk radio, when I had enough of politics, and thought I needed a little music.  I turned the station and a song came on that I hadn’t heard in quite some time.  By the time I arrived at work, my make-up was running from my tears.  THIS was the song.  I wrote it down and wondered if I would feel the same when I heard it again, and read the lyrics. 

This morning, I did both those things and I feel even more certain of this song.  I know it will be only two minutes of this very special day, but it will be two minutes that will live in my heart forever. 

Michael ~ I am so glad you agree and like this song.  When we dance, just always know that you are loved more than words, no matter how great they are, could ever convey.  Just know that I wish you and Rebecca all the most wonderful of times together. Like the saying goes, “May your joys be doubled and your sorrows be halved”.  Just always know……..


I love you for ever, I love you for always ~

PS) I will post the song after the wedding.........

Friday, March 4, 2016

Oy, What are We Doing?????







Last night I watched the Republican debate.
It was filled with anger and filled with hate.
They argued over each other without end ~
Donald even talked of his little “friend”……

Wake up America, this is beyond comprehension!
That we could support these folks fills me with tension!
Anyone not white, Christian and male....
They hate us all, without fail.

Cruz is a lunatic, no compromise.
Rubio misses work, no surprise
Kasich tries to look smart; he’s not wise
Trump is a narcissist in orange disguise

They rant and scream, they holler, so rude!!
Their lack of solutions is embarrassing, crude.
Their consistent mantra is to fill you with fear.
Their bigotry and belittling makes me shed a tear.

It’s embarrassing to witness what has become
a part of America, proud to be dumb!
Please, United States, don’t elect this scum!
I’ll be humiliated to say this is where I come from.

A Presidential debate should be full of thought;
At least that’s what I was always taught.
What we’re showing our children is a shame
picking a President just on fame?????

So please America, shake off the stupid!!
The ugliness shown can’t be disputed.
We’re in this world, we’re a big part ~
Let’s lead with love and a peaceful heart.

Turn off the media when they talk of Trump!!
He’s nothing but a vulgar chump.
Stop the hate ~ don’t be so small.

Remember, We’re AMERICA…after ALL!!!!!!