To The Future

Too many people don’t take the younger generations seriously and they need to start doing so. It’s their future that we are infecting and affecting.
 
The teenagers of this country pulled a huge “prank” on Donald Trump and his egocentric rallies. I never occurred to Trump that there would be people who wouldn’t jump at the change to attend this insane rally.
 
These are just the latest. Add in the teens who organized BLM protests all over the planet, kids working for gun control so they can go to school without getting shot like the Parkland students.
And Greta Thunberg and others like her who are activists for climate change.
 
Teens are getting involved with #MeToo so they don’t have to deal with sexual assault like their mothers and grandmothers.
 
And they are getting involved with promoting social distancing and face masks during Covid 19.
 
These kids have had to give up a lot over the past 4-5 years, most recently the high school experiences that the rest of us all took for granted… proms, graduation, time with their friends.
 
But they hold the future in the palm of their hands and they are NOT going to let a gross dirty old man take it away from them.
 
Cheers to you, kids…. many of us are rooting for you and your successes!!

Change

I can’t believe the things I’m seeing these days and it all boils down to one thing…
 
Change.
 
No one wants anything to change.
 
They will risk getting sick with a coronavirus so they don’t have to wear a mask that keeps themselves and others safer and healthy.
 
They don’t want to stay home for the same reason, in spite of everyone having take out/food deliveries, nonstop Netflix and Zoom. They fucking want a hair cut and to sit on the damn beach.
 
They are sick of the white vs black and why the hell can’t we just say “all lives matter” and get back to life as normal.
 
They are pissed because SCOTUS ruled that LGBTQ are human beings like everyone else and deserve the same rights as they do.. you know, the white conservative Christian Republican hypocrites who grew up learning about the Golden Rule but will do anything other than live by it.
 
They (especially white Christian men) are angry that women have forgotten their place to be silent and stay at home do “women’s work”.
 
They insist that “all lives matter” and that they are “pro-life” until it comes to feeding babies and children, providing healthcare for everyone and helping all people have the same rights as they do… a home to live in and enough food to eat.
 
They are even having a fit because a bottle of syrup is changing its name and logo.
 
Change scares the hell out of them. When in reality it’s the change that affects them and takes away their white, straight, Christian privilege and entitlement that makes them angry.
 
They don’t care about helping anyone else, which has been the Republican way for 50 years.
 
They don’t care that black kids are dying at the hands of the police.
 
They don’t care that BIPOC are dying to Covid 19 at a much higher rate.
 
They don’t care that transgender people are being killed just because they are perceived as being different.
 
They don’t care that children are being abused by their parents because they were guilt tripped by “good” Christians who convinced them that abortion was a sin.
 
They don’t care about their own children who come out as gay and are then disowned them for an inaccurate dogma.
 
It’s said that the only constant in life is change. But we will have to drag these racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic people into the 21st century whether they like it or not and they sure as hell don’t like it.
 
But change is happening. Someday all lives WILL matter, no matter the color of their skin, the person they love, their religion or lack of it, or even little things like how they dress, how much they weigh and other judgments that too many find fault with.
 
Maybe if these people would learn about these changes, talk to people and try to understand things from their perspective, these changes would be much less painful.

Rant: Judgmental People

I just saw some comments on Facebook about Oregon passing a bill for free abortions. These were coming from pro-life Christians I know. Comments of “sick people” and “monsters”. This really upset me and shows how little these people understand about women who choose to have an abortion. There are dozens of reasons why they would make this choice.

For those who agree with these comments, I have a few questions for you.

Have you ever had to make the agonizing decision of continuing your pregnancy or aborting a baby for a variety of reasons?

If you insist that a pregnant mother continue her pregnancy, are you willing to put your money where you mouth is and help her pay for the costs of having that baby? Are you going to buy diapers and formula for her? Are you going to hold her hand during labor? Are you going to babysit this infant so the mother can work? Are you going to be there for her when she can’t physically, emotionally, mentally or financially care this tiny child?

If she decides to give the baby up for adoption, are you willing to adopt the child?

Unless you answer “yes” to these questions, you are so totally out of line judging someone else’s choices.

So, who really are the sick monsters?

“Judge not lest ye be judged” ~ Matthew 7

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To clarify, I am a Pro Choice Atheist who understands the trauma of having to make this decision. I had to do it twice.

The first time I was 20, became pregnant and we decided to get married. Until I walked in on him in bed with another girl. I was 3 months pregnant and worried if I could afford to have a baby on my own and if I was emotionally mature enough to raise a child. I sought counseling from Planned Parenthood and in the end decided to have my baby. But I miscarried three weeks later.

The second time was after I married and became pregnant almost immediately after the wedding. I had gotten sick with food poisoning and the doctor said that the baby would most likely be mentally disabled because of it. We agonized over the decision to have the baby or abort and again decided to go ahead with the pregnancy. Again, I miscarried, this time in the 5th month.

Two pregnancies, two horrible decisions, two miscarriages. I was terrified to try again, but a year later, I gave birth to a healthy son.

I have several friends who had abortions and none of them went into the choice lightly. But all of them said they don’t regret the decision. It allowed them to have the family, the career or lifestyle they have afterwards.

But I also talked to several women who felt pressured to have their babies. One was just 14 when she got pregnant and was 20 with a 6 year old child when I met her. She hated motherhood, resented her daughter and felt cheated of her teenage years due to having a baby long before she was ready for it. Others echoed these same sentiments. When it came down to it, none of these young women felt like they have any support when they have their babies, being told “you made your bed”… it’s your own fault.

These are the same people who don’t want kids to have good sex education and birth control and then abandon them when the naive kids get pregnant.

Every Day in June: Prompt is Poem

Perfect love perfect trust

Candles softly glow

A furtive prayer

A glistening tear

Too often, too many, often flow

Faith and trust

I did, we did

But it didn’t matter

Darkness, light

Brightest star in the night

What a sight to behold

First hello, last smile

Child gone, spirit here

Grieving lasts a long long while

Limits, blessings, contradictions

Fear no evil, you are with me

Flood me with peace, set you free

Life is short, death is forever

Buried, marked, say goodbye

Candles, flowers, memories, poems

And still no answer to “why?”

Teach to Learn

Retire into yourself as much as possible. Associate with people who are likely to improve you. Welcome those whom you are capable of improving. The process is a mutual one. People learn as they teach.

~ Seneca (4 BC – 65 AD)
Source: Letters from a Stoic

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I’ve been an instructor of kind or another most of my life. And with each subject I taught, I learned as much, if not more, than what I was teaching. My students were my most important teachers.

Children

“Children are a burden to a mother, but not the way a heavy box is to a mule. Our children weigh hard on my heart, and thinking about them growing up honest and healthy, or just growing up at all, makes a load in my chest that is bigger than the safe at the bank, and more valuable to me than all the gold inside it.”

~ These Is My Words: The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine 1881 -1901, Arizona Territories by Nancy E. Turner

For the teachers

“We were all sitting around the dinner table discussing life and the man across from me decided to show his brains.

He says the problem with teachers is “What’s a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?”

He reminds the other dinner guests that it’s true what they say about teachers: Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.

I decide to bite my tongue and resist the temptation to remind the dinner guests that it’s also true what they say about lawyers. Because we’re eating, after all, and this is polite company.

“I mean, you’re a teacher, Taylor,” he says. “Be honest. What do you make?”

And I wish he hadn’t done that (asked me to be honest) because, you see, I have a policy about honesty and ass-kicking: if you ask for it, I have to let you have it.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.

I can make a C+ feel like a congressional Medal of Honor, and an A- feel like a slap in the face. How dare you waste my time with anything less than your very best?

I make parents tremble in fear when I call home: “I hope I haven’t called at a bad time, I just wanted to talk to you about something Billy said today. Billy said, ‘Leave the kid alone. I still cry sometimes, don’t you?’ And it was the noblest act of courage I have ever seen.”

I make parents see their children for who they are and what they can be.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids wonder, I make them question. I make them criticize.

I make them apologize and mean it. I make them write. I make them read, read, read.

I make them spell definitely beautiful, definitely beautiful,
definitely beautiful over and over and over again until they will never misspell either one of those words again.

I make them show all their work in math. And hide it on their final
drafts in English.

I make them understand that if you have brains then you follow your heart and if someone ever tries to judge you by what you make, you pay them no attention.

Let me break it down for you, so you know what I say is true: I make a difference in the lives of hundreds of children.

Now what about you? What do you make?”

Why Should I Pay

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I had the same kind of discussions when I was working cold calls for school levies. People would say “why should I pay for someone else’s kid’s education, they aren’t my children.” No, maybe not. But they are children who will grow with either an education or none. These are the kids who will one day be someone’s, maybe your’s, doctor, lawyer, bus driver, bridge builder, architect for the building your are living in, a teacher for your great-grandchildren. They might be the pilot for the plane you are flying in, the cop who keeps the streets safe, the firefighter who comes to put out your fire or paramedic who comes to check why you are having chest pains. They might be the computer programmer who makes sure you can read your email or use your cell phone. They might be the truck driver who delivers the food so you can eat, or the chef or waiter at the restaurant you like to visit. They might be the mail person, UPS driver, and phone technician, the cable company person who installs your dish so you can get your packages, mail, phone calls and TV shows. And much more. Children are not born with knowledge.. they depend on schools, teachers, administration staff, volunteers, parents, and the community to make sure they have both the experiences and education to enable them getting the knowledge they will need to be productive adults some day. All of that takes effort, time and money. And empathy. Try to see the big picture in all of this and not just your own little world.