woke…

Hello, sweetlings! Yes, it has been forever and a day since I made an appearance, have no excuse other than life taking up WAY more hours as of late than anticipated, lol! =) This post is dedicated to my friends at Pine Ridge Reservation, may you all fight the good fight and find peace at long last.

I hate to start this beautiful new year off with a call to action… wait a second, no, I do not, I LOVE IT! This is our country, people, WE the people. Not the few electorates that are abusing their power, the power that we so willingly gave to them to avoid having to make the hard decisions ourselves…

Let’s face it, that is what our government is, a governing body of people who are impassioned, about what we really have no clue, but people who are willing to get up early every morning, be unpopular, make hard and sometimes, even the hardest decisions. For a salary, yes. For power, to be certain. But also to keep Joe Everyman from having to deal with the realities of life under the horrendous​ conditions that untold generations before us led us to today.

No blame, no particular country here… I am an equal opportunity offender today, peeps! Let me continue down this particular rabbit hole, the beauty of the anonymity​ of online discourse is that I will never know if you start to read a post and leave in a disgusted, or amused, huff. =)

A lie passed down by a culture becomes a tradition​. This is NOT to say EVERYTHING is a lie, or every tradition is bad. Breathe, and listen. So, this “lie,” that brown-skinned people are less capable than whites, perhaps, or that homelessness comes from laziness, or that a woman who dresses skimpily deserves to be assaulted, is repeated over and over until it becomes the “truth” for a particular culture. The story justifies the resultant behavior. This is the propaganda​ machine at work. Say anything often enough, loudly enough, and at some point, it changes from ridiculous to TRUTH.

I ask one thing of you, my long-suffering friends. Do NOT be so far removed from critical thinking that you accept the life our government needs us to participate in. Our morals are a LEARNED behavior set, really and for true. I know thinking about difficult matters is, well, difficult. I too would rather eat spicy pumpkin tempura and drink cold beer while playing cards with my friends. But this is MY life, YOUR life, and if we do not allow our voices heard, an elected official will speak​ for us. We still have power, my friends, in numbers. Add your voice to a conversation you support, and do NOT allow the machine to silence you! Change is hard won, but worth the struggle in the end. Are you with me, peeps? I know we are tired, hungry, over-worked, marginalized​, without appropriate​ housing​ or roads, or access to medical care. But we are here, we out-number the 1% by 99%, and if you think we cannot do anything to change the status quo, how about we ALL, every single working class person in the good old US of A, decide NOT to go to work tomorrow? Or the day after? A few days of literally NOTHING opening, working on schedule, or being available is a simple way of becoming visible. I know, sounds so easy, of COURSE there is sacrifice involved. I would be hard-pressed to lose a few days pay as well… but that is not the point. The point is that for all we feel powerless, we STILL have the ability to change things.

It is 2018, and I really hoped that by this time in our history, we would have our collective shite together. But it’s not too late. Please remember​ that you have fight left in you. It isn’t “fair” that we have to fight so long and hard, but we CAN change things if we band together and fight for common goals. I will be in the trenches right along with you, my friends, trying to create a sustainable world for our kid’s kids, and so on. I know I personally will not realize the full rewards of my hard work, but that’s what life is all about. Continuity and passing​ it forward. Much love and respect to you all, my fellow believers in something better to come!

CNN Schools of Thought…

The Historian has become more interested lately in current world news. By the end of our Spring Trimester, she had begun to read CNN’s Student News, and found it to be pretty informative, without an obvious bias. Though light in actual content, it presents current events and we can explore further topics that catch her fancy. Unfortunately, this is primarily a service for school children, and they do not maintain new entries during the summer months. As an alternative, we have been exploring the CNN Schools of Thought website, and are happy with the variety of topics to be found. Some of our favs are Curriculum, Economy, Policy, Issues, Technology and International Education. While I will be the first to admit there is always a slant when it comes to reporting the news, I am thrilled with this website. I can expose her to the ideas of conflict and the resulting turmoil, without the splashy photos and accompanying right-wing, reactionary blather. It is a way for me to expand her knowledge base, her world in a more age-appropriate way. A gifted child desires to be informed, but this does not mean they can mentally handle the reality. I do not think we shelter her, but I am thankful for the facts presented in a less-threatening manner. Muling this over, I cannot help but think of the children whom are living thru the conflicts we read about. They are not protected from the realities of their daily life, they have no one to step in and ensure their safety and well-being. My heart aches for them, and while I do not want to downplay their struggles, I do not feel that my foxling needs to know ALL the details at this point. She is 12, a very compassionate and altruistic 12, but young nonetheless. I am embarrassed to admit, I am happy I live in a country where I can shelter her from the worst of what mankind does to one another. But I digress… if you have children, or just want a lighter perspective, check out Schools of Thought.

labels…

Sometimes labels are helpful, even though they can be limiting. I tend to dislike labels, but can see the intelligence of having words with which we can sort things to make our lives and decisions easier. If I were asked, and were in an answering mood, I might say I was a conservative democrat, or perhaps a very liberal republican. I am a mother, stay at home as well as home educating. I am a wife; usually a good one, and a great cook, even though I hate to spend time in the kitchen. I am an environmentalist, an avid reader, a moody individualist, and an introvert who can talk your ear off, if I feel comfortable enough. I am strong, stubborn and overweight. I own more books than clothes, and am ever plotting how I can fit another bookshelf in the living room. But I digress…

A label that I have been mulling over as of late is being “civically engaged”. I read that approximately 40% of people in jails and prisons have had prior convictions and have had some type of mental issues that went unaddressed. In the past 4 fiscal years, states have cut 4.35 billion dollars in public mental-health spending. I also read that for every $2000-$3000 spent on treatment for the mentally ill saves $50,000 in incarceration costs. There never has been, or will be, enough money to help all those in need, but I believe in damage control, and pre-emptive spending seems a likely way to cut costs and improve lives.

I am reminded of those “well baby” visits we took The Historian to in her early years. It drove me crazy, dragging a perfectly healthy baby into a germ-infested doctor’s office on my husband’s one day off. She would get sick every. damned. time… 7 days later, like clockwork. BUT, I have a friend whose little girl was diagnosed with a tumor at the base of her brain stem during one of these well baby check-ups. After meeting her, I never looked at the doctor appointments the same way again.

What about our nationwide immunization program ? This costs our insurance millions of dollars a year, yet we support this legislation as a country because of the benefits to us, as a whole. When my father was a child, and he or a sibling contracted measles, they were quarantined in their home with a large sign on the door. They were probably unhappy with the imposed vacation, but were in compliance because it was about life and death, not freedom of choice. Our nation came together again, probably with some doubt to eradicate polio thru vaccinations, painful though they were. We have the ability to see what is good for us, as a whole, and work toward that common goal. I believe that we are all, to some extent, civically engaged. I think that most of us, if we put our differences aside, can come together again… this is our legacy, as americans, as humans.

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