He is Your President, Too

Like it or not, Donald Trump is the President Elect of this country. Was he the best choice? I honestly don’t know. Was he the worst choice? Apparently not. Was he my choice? Yes. And here’s why…

  1. People are tired; especially, the working class people who don’t qualify for government assistance or tax breaks. These are the people (of all races, religions and sexual orientations) who go to work every day but don’t quite make enough to be comfortable. These are the people who struggle to put their kids through college or to make sure all the bills are paid every single month. These are the people whose children are grown, whose houses are paid for, who now pay more in taxes because they lost all their deductions. These are the people who finally got to retirement and realized the government taxes you on the social security you draw. These people are tired of continually paying into a system that is so obviously broken they can’t see a way to make it right. They want a system that works. They want a system that is fair. And they believe Trump can give it to them.
  2. People want real healthcare, not just free birth control. I have friends who use Obamacare. Their premiums are outrageous. The deductible is ridiculous. And most doctors won’t take it because it doesn’t pay. I also have friends who are self-employed who can’t afford it. So, they are penalized for not having coverage. Our lives are controlled by insurance providers and it needs to stop. Give us something that makes sense.
  3. People want their guns. It’s just that simple. The Constitution gave people the right to bear arms and they don’t want to lose that right. Go away Democrats and leave the guns alone.
  4. People want LEGAL immigrants. Now, this gets really touchy, but I would like to understand how people who are upset about the wall (which I don’t believe will happen) think the flood of illegal immigrants impacts our economy. These people sneak through our borders and take jobs and housing away from our citizens. They obtain illegal documents that they then use to receive welfare and food stamps and medicaid. Their children are in our schools without ever paying one dime. The list of issues is long. People don’t have a problem with anybody moving to the US.  However, if you want to live here do it legally.
  5. People want a country who doesn’t lay down to terrorism. They want a president who would have sent help to Benghazi. They want a president who isn’t afraid to stand up and say we aren’t going to take it any more. Does that mean they want Mr. Trump to push the button or round up all the Muslims? No. What is does mean is they’re tired of looking like a bunch of wimps in front of the world. We claim to be the most powerful nation with the most powerful army, but we surely don’t act like it. People want a president with backbone. People want to go to sleep at night knowing our borders are safe and we won’t be attacked before the sun rises.
  6. People want the real FBI back. Not this watered-down version of law enforcement, but the agency in charge of protecting the federal laws of this land.

This list pretty much sums up why I voted for Trump. But there are somethings I want to clarify.

  1. I am not a racist. I don’t care what color you are if you come to me with respect then I will return it to you. Just like I, as a white woman, am not supposed to judge people based on their race, I would expect the same. Stop implying that all white people are racists.
  2. I don’t care about your sexual orientation. LGBTQ or whatever letter I may have left out, that’s your business. Get married. Don’t. Become a boy or a girl. Hold hands in public. I really just don’t care. Some people do. However, I hope this President has more important things to worry about.
  3. Practice whichever religion you would like. Just don’t deny me the same.
  4. I promise to be offended for you if I see a man grab your crotch in public. In fact, I promise to intervene if I see it happen. I’m not trying to make light of rape, just letting you know a Trump supporter does know this isn’t right.
  5. I promise not to call you names or say things implying that you are ignorant. I promise not to burn your car or house or the local Wal-Mart. I have seen more hatred spewed by Hillary supporters in the past week than by any Trump supporters and it breaks my heart to see how divided people are.

Let me finish with this:

I have heard Trump compared to Hitler (among other things). I think people are forgetting that he does not have absolute power over the citizens of this country. We have checks and balances in place. We are all capable of thinking and acting for ourselves. We must learn from the past and work toward our future, not dwell on what could have been.

 

 

 

 

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The Donald and His Unfiltered Mouth

Let me start off with a disclaimer. I do not condone the physical assault of any person – man, woman or child – by any other person(s). Forcing yourself on another is wrong both morally and legally.

Now, let’s get real. I want all of you to read this to the end before you start calling me crazy (or worse).

How many of us have been hanging out with our BFFs and the talk turns to people we find attractive? How many of us have said things like, “Don’t you think ________ has a great ass?” Or, “I’d like to touch/taste _________’s abs. He/she is hot.” Or, the old-fashioned, “I’d let _______ eat crackers in my bed anytime.”

Granted, that isn’t quite the same as saying you would grab someone by the crotch, but the meaning behind it is the same. Whether you are talking about someone you know or a complete stranger (yes, celebrities count), you are still objectifying their body. You are still not taking into consideration how that type of talk would make them feel. Guess what, saying those things, thinking those things makes you The Donald. ACTING on those things  without consent makes you a rapist.

Take a look at that incredible SO you have. Guaranteed they say those things. Again, maybe not as graphically, but it happens. Your fathers, sons, brothers, uncles and cousins all say things similar to The Donald. So do your mothers and daughters and sisters and aunts. We all do it. If someone recorded some of the conversations you have with your friends (without your knowledge) would you sound like a pervert who can’t control their base urges? Probably. Does that fact make us all the type of person who would assault someone? Nope. Not even close. Does it mean we condone sexual assault? Nope. Not that either. There is a line. Some people understand that and others don’t. Talking is just talking. It is someone’s actual actions that determine which side of the line they are on.

I’m sure some of you are boiling right now. You want to tell me I’m an idiot and I don’t understand what sexual assault does to a person. Maybe that’s true. That doesn’t make me any less capable of understanding the difference between talking and raping. It also doesn’t render me incapable of realizing Donald Trump is a misogynist. You can’t deny what he refuses to hide. What you also shouldn’t be able to deny is that he admitted he said it and he apologized for it. At no point did he try to implicate someone else. At no point did he attempt to blame his behavior on any other person. Instead, he stood up and took his licks. Can you say the same for his opponent?

So, before you run out and vote for Hilary because Trump wants to turn America into a huge buffet of sex acts perpetrated on unsuspecting women, consider what lying says about your character. Ask yourself why not one woman has come forward to claim that Trump molested them. Consider how many people associated with the Clinton’s have mysteriously passed away in the last year. Remember Benghazi. Don’t let the desperate machinations of a known criminal cloud your judgement.

And next time you see a really hot guy in the gym…walk away.

 

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Respect

I haven’t written anything of consequence in quite a while. It’s like something in my brain turned off and I can’t find the focus to put words on ‘paper.’ Today, while talking with my husband, I started turning an idea over in my mind, and now I can’t let it go.

We see a lot in the news about bullying; vicious behavior that goes so much deeper than pushing and shoving on the playground. Children are harming themselves and others because their classmates are mentally, physically and verbally abusing them. We are raising children who think nothing of calling someone a whore or a queer or names that are, in their own way, more hurtful. With the advent of cyber bullying it has moved from a problem to an epidemic.

Sometimes I am guilty of thinking we are raising a generation of kids with thin skin. Can’t you take a little teasing? Can’t you ignore what other people are saying or doing and realize YOU are worthwhile? Then I see another story about a slut list for girls in the sixth grade and I know I’m wrong. There is no way for a child to shrug that off. I’m not talking about getting your lunch money stolen, getting shoved as you walk down the hall or not being quite cool enough for the cool group at school. I am talking about attacking someone’s character.

When I was in elementary school it was horrible to be picked last for a team at recess. And I was, almost every time. I wasn’t fast or coordinated. I was skinny and not strong. But at no point did the other kids overtly make fun of me for that. As I look back, I think it is because our parents taught us to have respect for other people. Even if they were different we should treat them like we wanted to be treated. I’m not sure when we stopped teaching children that basic respect is expected.

Seems simple, right? Teach the next generation to care about others so school is a safer place. Teach the next generation to think about their words and actions and the impact they can have. Teach the next generation to care more about the inside of someone than the outside. Simple rules for life that can make all the difference in our world.

Unfortunately, adults don’t seem to have learned that lesson so well themselves. Instead, we pull on the cloak of adulthood to hide behind a nice smile and a sweet word. But reality is we still pick the slow ‘kid’ last. We look at the same sex couple and curl a lip because they are ‘wrong.’ We exclude people who are slower or less physically appealing. We whisper about somebody’s clothes or hair or the size of their butt, thighs, ears, etc. We beat people down so we can feel better about ourselves. We say things like, “Maybe he/she can launch a rocket, but did you see how fat he/she is?”

Am I guilty? Yes.

Am I proud? Not especially.

However, I can honestly say I hope I never see a day when my accomplishments become more important than offering a hug to somebody who is having a bad day. I hope I never pass up the chance at true friendship because I don’t think the person offering it is worthy. I hope I never become so judgmental that I miss the chance at having more incredible people in my life. And I hope, if given the chance, I can teach a child (or an adult) to respect other people.

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Tolerance Isn’t Just a Word in the Dictionary

“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi

This post started because I saw where Westboro Church was out protesting again over the weekend.  So I started thinking about tolerance.  Then I started thinking about what that word actually means.  According to Dictionary.com, tolerance is…

a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward those whose opinions,  practices, race, religion, nationality, etc.,differ from one's own; freedom from bigotry.

In my opinion we, as a people, have lost the meaning of the word.  We preach tolerance for religion, sexuality and politics (among other things), yet we have no tolerance for others.  Liberals are angry because the conservatives try to tell them what to do.  Conservatives are angry because liberals don’t listen.  We are a world full of angry people, each of us trying to achieve something that is at direct odds with what our neighbor wants or needs.

There are specific examples, we all know them.  Kirk Cameron is a perfect one.  I don’t agree with him – let’s just get that out right up front.  However, he is entitled to his opinion.  He is entitled to his beliefs.  If he should learn to be tolerant of gay marriage, shouldn’t we learn to be tolerant of him (and people like him) who believe it is wrong?  I know this is a touchy subject.  And I really don’t want to get caught up in the whole gay marriage debate, because that’s not what this post is about.

Instead, substitute any hot button in place of that one.  President Obama and politics in general, health care, welfare, social security, religion, separation of church and state.  There are hundreds (possibly thousands) of these, and every one pushes somebody’s button.  We all have things we are passionate about.  That is what makes us individuals.  It is that freedom of thought and speech that our forefathers fought for.  It is that freedom our military stands ready to fight for every single day.

But the abuse of that freedom – the use of it to foster hate and intolerance – is NOT what this country is based on.  We are based on hope and freedom from oppression.  However, it seems to me we have abandoned what we stood for.  Instead, we rail against those who don’t agree with us.  We don’t stop at disagreement.  Instead, we make it personal.  We attack the person and not their ideas.

I won’t even pretend to have an answer to this problem.  I’m not a miracle worker.   It would be a wonderful world if we all decided to  take a look at ourselves and go back to one of the basic beliefs of all great religions.  ‘Do unto others as you would have done unto you.’  Stop and think before you call someone an idiot (or worse).  Stop and think before you rant and rave about someone’s beliefs.  Would you want them to say those things about you just because they disagree with your stand on an issue?

If you preach tolerance then practice tolerance.  If you want respect then give respect.  If you expect a better world then be the change it needs.

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Late to the Game

So, I’m going to start therapy.  Actually, my husband and both are (as a couple and possibly as individuals).  Being of the over 40 age group, I feel like I’m late to this game.  Seriously, shouldn’t I have been  telling somebody about my phobias and stuff since I was 20?  I’ve wasted a lot of years keeping all this crap bottled up.  I almost feel sorry for the poor soul who has to listen to it all.  Almost.

It’s amazing to me that just the thought of unloading all this onto somebody else makes me feel better.  Is that how it’s supposed to be?  Am I supposed to just say, “Here, you deal with it?”  Maybe my expectations are too high.  Surely it won’t be as simple as that.  How could it be?  Either way, easy or hard, I have to do this.  WE have to do this.  For ourselves.  For us as a couple.  For our marriage and what it means to our highly dysfunctional family.

That’s really all I have.  Not much.  Nothing earth shattering.  Just a tiny update on the rollercoaster I call life.

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Looking for the Wagon

I fell off the wagon.  Hell, let’s be honest.  I jumped off the damned thing with wild abandon.  I have all sorts of reasons, but they all boil down to excuses.  I seem to specialize in allowing other people to control my decisions.  If you ask people around me, I’m getting better at standing up for what I think.  But I’m still punishing myself for doing that.  I put my foot down about Action A and then I feel guilty for NOT letting people walk on me.  So, I eat.  I’m nervous about the new project – I eat.  One of the grandkids (or in this case two) is going through a rough time and I can’t FIX it – I eat.  Only one damned thing I’m truly good at and that’s eating.

The thing is, I see what I’m doing.  I see it and I hate it and I can’t seem to stop it.  And then I hate that I can’t stop it and I feel bad about myself, so I eat some more.  And on and on and on…

You know, I quit cigarettes without half this much trouble.  And after 10 years I don’t crave them (much).  But food…  Food is always there.  Sweet and salty, rich and warm and full of comfort.  I love the crunch of celery and the smoothness of mashed potatoes, the texture of a good steak and the spiciness of good spaghetti sauce, the funky bite of hummus and the liquid silk of queso dip.  And I haven’t even thought about dessert.  I love it all – except liver.  And when I’m eating I feel GOOD.  I’m not worried about anything or anybody.

So, I’ve made a decision to try again.  To get up in the morning and do my best to NOT eat my way into oblivion.  To count my calories.  To stand up for myself instead of wallowing in self-pity and carbs.

Wish me luck.

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Punishment

Some days I’m pretty sure that my life is punishment for things I did when I was young.  Well, for one thing in particular.  I can’t imagine that it could be anything other than some sort of karmic retribution.  The drama, the bullshit, the crazy that surrounds me every single day is more than any one human should have to deal with.

When I met my husband, he had two children and I had none.  He had two grandchildren (they were 5 and 7).  Things were a little chaotic, but I’d never raised kids so i didn’t know if it should or shouldn’t be that way.  Now, 20 years later, things are still chaotic.

The insanity of the situation would be funny if it weren’t so damned sad.

My stepson is useless.  And I mean that in the best possible way.  He hasn’t worked in 3 years (at least), he has 2 children that he sees only when we make the effort to pick them up, he pays no child support but he can find money for booze and drugs.  And his biggest goal in life is to move back in with us.  The only way I keep him out is by promising my husband (who is a classic enabler) that I will leave.

My stepdaughter walked out on her son about 10 years ago.  Left him with his stepfather and moved out.  She took his sister, but not him.  She left her last boyfriend right after Christmas because she didn’t want to raise his kids.  Really?  Like that comes as a surprise to the people who raised yours.  Now, she doesn’t ask us for anything directly.  But I figure raising both her children was enough.

The oldest grandson has now decided that he is going to divorce his wife.  We’re not really sure why.  Only thing we get out of him is because he wants kids of his own.  Imagine this – he doesn’t want to raise somebody else’s children.  HA!  The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, does it?

The oldest granddaughter is 3 states away.  She’s the only one who seems to be holding it together.  Of course, that could change at any moment.

All of them, each and every one, seem to think we are here for anything they might need.  Money, a place to stay, a babysitter, a scapegoat.  If one of them (especially the two males) stump a toe, it’s because one of us didn’t tell them not to.

Surely, surely this must be punishment.  Normal people don’t live this way.  They don’t deal with children who refuse to grow up, do they?  A few days ago, the grandson showed up, he wants to leave his wife and needs a place to stay for a couple of weeks.  We have JUST, within the last year, gotten them all out.  We have JUST found a place where we can sit around in our underwear if we want.  We have JUST found a place were we control the TV and the temperature and the phone and the menu.  And it was good.  We have a spot on this earth where the dishes are always ‘done’ and the only laundry left in the machine is ours.

So, to celebrate the new drama, I have spent the past few days feeling freaking sorry for myself.  Today I had a crying fit over a set of dishes.  How mature of me.  I have no idea how I will get through the next couple of weeks.  And, of course, this really screws with my diet.  Because I eat for comfort.  I eat to make me feel better?  Sounds so stupid.  Too bad it’s true.

I’m really thinking that my husband and I need some counselling.  Together.  Somebody to tell us how in the hell we are supposed to survive this shit.  Twenty years is too long to throw away.  But running seems like such a good idea.

I’ll keep  you all posted.

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