Monday, January 30, 2017

As I See It

This has been pricking the back of my brain for quite a while now.  It has taken me a minute to work out how to reconcile my conflicting feelings on this issue.
In the wake of a tempest tossed sea of campaigning, elections, outrage, elation,  emotional breakdowns, snowflake meltdowns, celebrity cuckoo birds, and downright insanity - I've often found myself off balance. do I feel about this, or that, or this again.
But lately, with all the back and forth regarding immigrants I've had to seriously concentrate on trying to get a handle on my own personal position.

Yes, we are a nation of immigrants, a huge melting pot of humanity who fled their countries of origin for a whole host of reasons.  But, one of those reasons was NOT  to pretend to  assimilate into life here with the express purpose of bringing down the country we came to for comfort.  We maintained our individual heritages and yet managed to come together under a single identity - that of Americans.
And let us remember, it was a different time...there were no airplanes, no automatic weapons, no cell phones, or pressure cookers to be blown up.  If you had a problem with someone, and let's face it, we did - you took up the weapon of the day and fought it out.  Someone always won, someone always lost.  Sometimes we were better for the struggle, sometimes not, but when the bag was shaken up and spilled out again, we all spilled out as Americans and sometimes we had things happen to us that polarized us in that identity, horrible tragedies that broke our hearts, but not our backbones.

In our beginning days of nation building, there were ideological differences which often led to  dastardly cowardly acts of sedition or assassination for which many were summarily hung, even women.  We had no problem taking care of our own knitting.

So, this was a long trip to get to my point....and there are several.
     Immigrants - yes, we are.  Except for indigenous American Indians, we all came here from somewhere else.  But, we came escaping a myriad of problems, ideological differences, civil war, famine, and oppression to find something better.  We didn't come here to reconstruct America into that which we had fled from.  And, by and large we did not come here to kill the other people we found here.  Yes, yes, I know we have a bad history with the Indians and that is regrettable at best, they were doing the only thing they knew how to do which was wage war on encroachers and we responded in kind and what we allowed to happen to them was horrific and to me is one of the greatest embarrassments our nation has to bear.
     The Statue of Liberty - lately there has been much said about the message on the statue of Liberty as our government's duty toward the world.  While the message is lofty, soaring and full of hope and promise it was a gift to the United States from France.  Gifted to a nation of immigrants who had successfully assimilated themselves into a great nation.  This message was not part of our Constitution.  Our government has an explicit duty to protect and defend our citizens from all enemies both foreign and domestic.  I have absolutely NO issue with anyone who desires to live here and share in the beauty of our country, but they have to become our countrymen.  They cannot come here with the desire burning in their hearts and minds that we are a part of some holy war they are weaponized against.
     The President - like them or hate them, no matter who sits in the chair in the oval office IS the President of everyone who calls themselves an American.  If you cannot respect the office of President as a citizen then you should move elsewhere.  Does this mean I believe you should rubber stamp their behavior?  Absolutely not, we should hold our leaders accountable.  ALL.OF.THEM.    And to purposely introduce incendiary language into our country where the President is concerned should be actionable.  Do you have any idea the amount of chaos and danger we would all be in if someone assassinated our President?  Some of us remember the assassination of Kennedy which ushered in LBJ who was unapologetic in his grand scheme to re-enslave the black voters by making them dependent on the government which would in turn bring about the control of the Democratic party for the next century.  Don't take my word for it.....look it up for yourself.   Our current Democratic party is not the party of our great grandparents.  And those people who pretend to be Republicans (RHINOs) are the lowest form of a political entity I can imagine.  Republicans In Name Only accomplish nothing for the party they supposedly represent and are in fact little more than the sneaky little pea shooters for the opposition.
     Walls/Fences - We, as a thinking people, know that borders, walls, fences, enclosures, or whatever type of non-encroachment word you like to use.......are freaking necessary.  If they weren't we would all be living in tents with no possessions.  We fence in our school children.  Why?  To protect them, both from them wandering off or someone else wandering in.  We fence in our criminals.  Why?  To protect the citizenry from further acts of the violence they've proven themselves capable of.  We fence in our livestock.  Why?  Because they are an asset and mostly not bright and they can't be trusted to remain where they should.  We fence our yards.  Why?  To protect our pets, our children, and our assets.  The borders of a country....any country....should be such that we can be watchful of the influx of people who do not wish us well. 
     Love everybody - well this is a great and lofty thought founded in Christianity which seems to now be used as both an uplifting message and a means of punishment as well.  Don't speak to me of "we are better than this" when some of us are worried about RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISTS  (yes, I said the words) are pouring into our country when we ignore the thousands of our own children in foster care, refusing to even do something as simple as help to support those over burdened foster parents with meals, or diapers, or anything else.  And God forbid we shake up our easy little home life by fostering or adopting!  I truly believe there are people in this country who would take in a Syrian refugee before they would open their home to a hurting child.  I am as compassionate a person as you could hope to find, but I believe in fixing "US" before we presume to fix anyone else.  Let us place as high a value on our elderly, our babies, our veterans, our people with disabilities, and our students as we say we value everyone else.  Each person who comes into this country who does not assimilate by becoming a citizen, learning the language, and becoming gainfully employed is a dead drain on the battery of life for every other person here.  Our infrastructure simply cannot withstand any more people who simply want to move to  American but not contribute to the American way of life.  And those people are a potential threat to us all.  And the hypocrisy of Liberal Christians who have fallen silent about the thousands of Christians being slaughtered overseas is mind boggling.
And, there are millions of fine vocal Americans who believe that they have the right to sit on their widening backsides and allow someone else to take care of them.  Many of them have had difficulty finding jobs and have given up....but they should be the first of us standing and applauding the effort to create more jobs in America rather than complaining about how we are alienating other nations.  Haven't you figured it out yet?  Other nations, with the exception of a few (Israel comes to mind) don't give a flying fig about America and are waiting for us to fall so they can pick clean the bones of what was once a mighty nation. 

Friday, January 20, 2017

An Open Letter to You, and You....and You

What's it been now....two years....give or take a week or two?  At least two years when we all started considering who might be the next President, and anguishing over the lack of really inspiring candidates.  After all, most of those really GOOD men and women with great inspirational characters would rather take a bayonet to the eyeball than put themselves into the political lion's den.  Many were called, fewer were chosen, some ran like rabbits and in the end only two remained.

I feel like a talent agent who discovered a Marilyn Monroe in a coffee shop on the corner of BFE....I SAW Trump from the beginning.  I saw him, I heard him, I laughed at him, I wondered about him and more than a few times, I cringed over him.  But, he made me feel things.  Each encounter I had with him via TV made me engage with him.  Sometimes, it was a visceral not nice engagement.  Other times it was an "I wonder what this guy was like in junior high school" engagement.  And, sometimes, it was "this guy must be an amazing businessman."

I have said for a long time that America is a business...the biggest business in the world and it needs a business man to hold the reins.  We spend too much, we don't account for things correctly, we don't protect our investments, and we don't recognize that when the takers in a society outnumber the makers in our society, we are doomed to fail.  My husband didn't agree with me....AT ALL.  He was a late arrival on the Trump Train, but he kept inching closer to getting a seat as more and more of those career legacy politicians left unsavory flavors in his mouth that he couldn't ignore.

So, whether or not you like it, or like me, on the dawn of this momentous moment in our American history, you are going to receive my opinion.  You are forewarned....if you don't want it, click off now.  I am going to use my right as an American citizen - old, white, not privileged, under educated, female, to speak my mind.

First I will address the Jackass in the room (I wanted to say elephant, but that is my party's symbol so I had to go in a different direction.)  My great grandparents were yellow dog Democrats.  I actually remember hearing my Great Grandfather (whom I adored) tell his granddaughters, "If I ever find out you have voted Republican I will personally beat you bloody."  He felt that way because the Democratic party began as a party for the people (unfortunately, they also have quite a history in being anti-black, pro-slavery, anti-feminist, pro KKK, and a great many other platforms on which they stand with righteous indignation today.)  In fairness, so do those who grace the "other" side of the aisle.  Pawpaw had such an impact on his granddaughters that one of them voted Democratic until she died because she thought it was the right thing to do regardless of how she felt herself.  Such was the respect she had for that man.

I did not vote for Hillary Clinton.  I have never voted for anyone because they were black, brown, yellow, white, male or female.  I vote because I feel things and I trust my instincts.  I AM a woman and I know women far better than I would like to and as a woman she made me uncomfortable.  Had she been the woman my heart believed was right for America I would have marched, burned my bra (happily), donned unattractive pant suits and stood right there with her..........but I couldn't.

The reason I couldn't is because I am tired.  I am tired of the same old business as usual, legacy entitled political machine that believes they are the only people with ideas, the only people with social conscience, and the only ones who manage to put one foot in front of the other and walk through the world.  We don't need our leaders to tell us how to live....we're doing it every day.  For the most part we don't need a moral compass - we need someone to be strong.

The thing that has pushed me to the limit is the fact that unless you are a certain color, sexual orientation or lack of one, or live in California or New simply do not do not aren't need need to be taken care of or protected from yourself.

And then...along came Trump.  With his funny hair, his erratic movements, his outrageous personality, and his complete inability to back down when he felt he had been wronged.  He didn't whine about the fact that he was talked about because he was a man, or had funny hair, or that he had failed at a lot of things, or had no political experience....he simply fired back and more often than not hit his target.  If news organizations are telling overt lies about you, are you supposed to shrivel up and die?  Or, should you whip out the worn out race or gender card?  Or, should you state your case, and let the chips fall.

I found myself, often, over the past 8 years hypnotized.  That even, dead calm delivery left me wondering at the end....what was said?  Maybe it is because I myself, am blunt, direct, to the point, and often speak without forming complete sentences because my ideas are coming so quickly I seem erratic - but I find the brisker, pointed, and get down to business language easier to understand.  I don't like 10 minute answers to a "what time is it?" question.  Tell me what time it is don't tell me how to build a clock or the history behind clocks.  Answers that are filled with many big words strung together resonate with me as an effort to sacrifice quality for quantity and lull me to sleep where I'm not paying close enough attention.

I am a different person - I know that.  I don't respond often as a "typical" woman and I am not easily offended unless you make the mistake of discounting my intelligence or ability to understand issues and platforms for myself.  And, I don't appreciate someone else being discounted because they don't speak as eloquently as some or swagger through life like a seasoned politician.  I don't need my information filtered through the hearts, minds, and mouths of people who view themselves as much smarter - I kind of like hearing from the person themselves and deciding for myself how I feel about it.

Eight years ago, I watched with a prayerful heart and tears in my eyes.  Not because I was angry about the outcome of the election but because I genuinely felt it was an amazing moment in history.  I prayed and hoped it would finally close the door on a division in our country.  President Obama was not my candidate, but he was my President and I prayed for him and his entire administration every day.  To wish him ill would have been wishing ill on my country, my countrymen and myself.  In my mind, this is the definition of an American - God, family, country.

Today, I again stand with a prayerful heart and tears in my eyes, hopeful that we can regain our country because I truly believe this is our last chance.  And I know that God rarely calls the qualified.  He instead chooses to qualify those He calls.  And today, once again, I get to witness a great moment in our nation's history that confirms for me what I was taught to believe as a child.  The greatness of our nation that assures anyone that they can grow up and one day become President of the United States of America.

I am finished with political posts and commentary, I instead choose to spend my energy on helping our new President accomplish what we need.  I did it 8 years ago and maintained until I just couldn't see the reason to continue to support someone who did not respect or represent my core values.  I assure you that should our 45th President prove to be a disappointment I will be reflecting my displeasure at the polls where contrary to what I once believed, votes really do matter.

I thank you all for taking this journey with me whether you've ever agreed with me or not.  I respect you all and wish you well and I urge you to give this guy a chance.   Don't enter into tomorrow automatically discounting his ability or desire to accomplish great things.  We all have greatness within us and with God's help that greatness can come forth in a mighty way.  Don't label yourself as anything other than an American.