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Posts tagged ‘Politics’

15
Mar

American politicians make me want to puke

Like that GOP goon, Sanatorum, recently said about hearing John F. Kennedy’s 1960 speech on the separation of church and state – that it made him want to “throw up…” well, I say, anyone who believes or takes these GOP operatives seriously make me want to puke!   Actually, they make me want to cry.

Any politician who also feels the need to stress their Christianity and tell everyone they are a good Christian, makes me want to puke.   Why in hell should you or I care about a politician’s religion?  Does it make a person a better person because they profess to believe in God and religion?  Never.  Never ever.

The Pope makes me want to puke because he is clearly a women hater.  The fact that the POPE can profess his hate for women on his world-stage is very frightening.

I’m angry.

I’m angry that men – in the 21st century – who are in the public eye – are actually making strides to destroy some of the basic rights that women hold dear such as the control over their own bodies.   And I’m angry that this country seems to have lost its way in the values department.

I’m so angry.

I’m amazed that we are even having a public discourse about, of all things, contraception!  I seem to recall that this is a war women already fought, and won!

Why are men again declaring war on women?  What is that about?

Why the hell can’t women in this country turn the tables on the contraceptive issue and DEMAND that ALL men who want to have sex become castrated? What’s the difference between a man being castrated and men demanding women give up their right to control their own reproductive system?  What’s the difference?

My body is my body no one has a right to tell me what to do with it – just like I have no right to demand a man be castrated.  If government and the church wish to control my female body, why won’t it then control the male body and require castration?

What’s the difference?

How can someone as morally corrupt as Rush Limbaugh, drug addict that his is, feel as if he can call women who use contraception sluts and whores, etc.?

If a woman has sexual relationships with men who are castrated she’d not need contraceptives and thus, using Limbaugh’s logic, they’d not be considered sluts or whores, correct Rush?

How dare any man or any church or any religion tell a woman how to respond sexually while a man can pop out his willy nilly willy nilly?

I need to talk about this but it’s late and I need sleep.

Here is a listing of my rants – for another day…..

I need to talk about immigration and the hate that goes along with that issue.  I need to talk about the killing of homosexuals in Uganda, and elsewhere. I need to talk about the war on women in this country.  I want to tell women in this country TO WAKE UP!  I want to tell idiots – total IDIOTS like those running against each other in the GOP race to SHUT UP and leave women, religion, marriage, and all social issues alone because you have no right to push a social agenda that is clearly meant to inflame those in our country who are uneducated because of the school system GEORGE CRIMINAL BUSH AND HIS ILK HAVE DESTROYED.

I need to yell and let loose with my anger about the dumb-ing down of America by the “Haves” who want it ALL and MORE.  I need to talk about what greed has done to this country.  Greed and Power, Power and Greed make this country tick and to hell with those living below the poverty level.

Money and power.  That’s it folks.

That’s why we cannot have a decent healthcare system in this country…. what would happen to the insurance and drug companies if healthcare were free?

If Americans would stop thinking about their next meal and get off the couch long enough to figure out what’s going on in this country, maybe they’d do SOMETHING to promote positive change?

Below is how I feel as a result thinking deeply about America and its politics, its religion, its values or lack thereof, and its MEN who want nothing more than  to see women BAREFOOT and WITH CHILD.

3
Mar

Weekly Photo Challenge: Distorted

The photo challenge this week is to define what “distorted” might look like.

The first thing that came to my mind?  Politicians and supposed “entertainers” like the horrible Rush Limbaugh.  A picture of Rush Limbaugh does embody the word distorted, distort, distortion, like non other I can think of.  But, I have never photographed him, nor would I ever want to.

Limbaugh’s recent on-air comments about a Georgetown law student’s appeal to Congress on the contraception issue, were so twisted, so hateful, and so misogynistic that it baffles the mind. We are in the 21st century, correct?

Limbaugh called Georgetown Law School student Sandra Fluke “a prostitute and a slut” for arguing that birth control should be covered by insurance at religious workplaces or institutions.   But, more troubling than his sick, sick words?  Some GOP politicians see nothing wrong with what Limbaugh said. I kid you not.

That’s not only distorted, it’s incredibly troubling…..

Anyway, about my entry, I captured this beautiful fellow (the zoo docent said though he’s mighty pretty, he’s a real pest!) at Zoo Miami while he was shaking his lovely plume. I am sorry I cannot recall the name of this bird…. I also don’t recall if he is a pigeon or a dove… I will attempt to find the answer though.

1
Mar

the path of happiness is measured by human kindness

So the Academy Awards are decided.  I enjoyed the show and agree with the outcomes.  I don’t care about the fashion or the best or worst dressed – everyone was beautiful as far as I’m concerned.

But, I’m so sorry that a wonderful, wonderful film was not on the award list. The wonderful movie, Happy, (thehappymovie.com), may not be Academy Award material, but it’s material that says a great deal about the meaning of life.

Happy is a documentary about the meaning and the search for happiness. When I saw the film recently, it reaffirmed for me that the path toward happiness is measured in human kindness.

To be happy, to find happiness is what we all want as human beings.  The filmmakers – psychologists and other professionals, tell us that the pursuit of happiness requires us to live a life in which performing acts of kindness is so ingrained in us it comes naturally and happens often.

When artists create, or writers write, they enter what’s best described as “the zone.”  That zone is where happiness happens and is measurable.

Depression, as we know, is an illness that is talked about, and talked about, and talked about. Depression is measured, diagnosed and medicated.  Acts of human kindness result in elevating the brain chemicals and systems that produce “happy endorphins and serotonin messages.”  When the brain is stressed-out and the happy chemicals in our brains go haywire on us, leaving us low, sad – depressed, medicine can turn it around.

Scientists and psychiatrists measure the level of depression and attempt to cure it with medicine that stimulates happy brain chemicals once again.   Granted, there’s much, much more to mental health – it’s serious and important and I don’t mean to make light of the topic… Instead, I wish to illustrate what the filmmakers of Happy tell us about how to create happiness, and that it can be measured and improved, too.

The main message of this film (for me) revealed a truth that simple human kindness, being grateful, sharing and giving to others, is a critical reality for living a life of happiness.  It’s all wrapped up in empathy, compassion for others; giving of ourselves, serving others, being passionate givers and knowing the return on that investment is our happiness.

In our daily lives we hear and read about hate and ugliness constantly.   Sadly we don’t hear about happy things such as examples of giving and compassion often enough. Rather, we hear and read news reports filled with politicians and criminals spewing hate.  They seem to embrace negativity and hate with a real passion.

Nearly every day this blog is used for people to talk about the Casey Anthony case.  Remember the Casey Anthony trial?  It was about determining who senselessly murdered a beautiful little child – Caylee Anthony.

In this Orlando, Florida case about the death of little Caylee Anthony, it was pretty clear that the toddler’s mother, Casey Anthony, single-highhandedly murdered her own daughter.

But, Casey Anthony was found not guilty by a jury of twelve people.  Granted, that was not a verdict anyone expected, least of all me, the reality of the trial’s outcome is something I’ve completely accepted.

Casey Anthony is not guilty of murder in the eyes of the law.

No one can punish or try her with this crime ever again.  No one…. That includes Federal entities, too, for those who are petitioning the government to try Casey Anthony in Federal Court.  It will not happen. And we need to thank our lucky stars that our justice system gives Casey Anthony that protection.

There are too many cases of truly innocent people punished by our system, and that is wrong, too, clearly.  The facts are these: The application of our state laws and our constitutional rights are often abused by over=zealous lawmakers.  There are prosecutors and law enforcement agencies out there who don’t always care about the innocent, they want to solve cases by any means possible.  It is up to us to VOTE for lawmakers who RESPECT the HUMAN Rights of all people, who apply the LAW evenly to ALL people.  That includes immigrants AND all ARAB human beings, by the way.

There are people in this country who believe in an eye-for-an-eye justice, like in Biblical times.  There are lawmakers who feel this way, too.  In fact, there are people with political power in this country who are so twisted, they’d like to give angry mobs the ability to hold be-headings, or hangings.  There is one GOP lawmaker in North Carolina who’d very much like that to happen. Republican Representative Larry Pittman says, “Let’s round up the (so-called), abortionists, rapists, kidnappers and murders and hang-em high.”  More specifically, Pittman said:

We need to make the death penalty a real deterrent again by actually carrying it out. Every appeal that can be made should have to be made at one time, not in a serial manner,” Pittman wrote in the email. “If murderers (and I would include abortionists, rapists, and kidnappers, as well) are actually executed, it will at least have the deterrent effect upon them. For my money, we should go back to public hangings, which would be more of a deterrent to others, as well.  via North Carolina GOP Lawmaker Calls For Bringing Back Public Hangings, Starting With Abortion Providers.

As America gets dumber it’s reflected in the people WE VOTE into office.

There are Americans who feel just as Representative Pittman does about forms of punishment.  There are people who want Casey Anthony dead. These angry and sick people would like nothing better than to see Casey Anthony face the ultimate punishment, and no doubt they’d like it to happen publicly.

God help them.

God help us all if haters, in the name of religion, seek justice their way.

4
Jan

Creative Whack #14: Look to the Past (JFK style)

So, last night Iowa reminded us all that it’s an election year.

I believe that 2012, if history repeats itself, will bode well for the economy and for jobs.  Optimism has flourished during Presidential election cycles over the years.  Optimism is my cry for 2012.

Hope in 2012 is on the collective minds of the American people who are, at this moment, suffering.  We have to hope, the opposite of hope is not an option.

To the homeless and the thousands of people who are hungry, jobless and without unemployment benefits (while fat-cat politicians wine and dine heavy-hitting money-makers to pay for another opponent-smearing TV ad), I’d soberly say, we need to hope, but we can’t hang our hats on that alone.

We can’t trust only in God without taking action ourselves.  God is good, yes, but He can’t pay the rent – unless someone pays us to preach.

When I hear people in desperate situations say, “It’s in God’s hands,” while the kids are hungry, it drives me nuts.  When in the world did that become a tactic for survival?

Massive homelessness and hunger was something I never believed could occur in the United States – that was when I was younger and more naive.

Still, I would never depend on God to fix the problems we face as a nation.   But, that’s a real problem today in Presidential elections – many people in this country want to elect a God, not a smart, honest and fair person to run the country.

God has nothing to do with the work of a politician or US President.

Should it matter that a President goes to church or temple? NO!

Should we care how often they pray?   NO, no, a thousand times NO!!!

I don’t much like Presidential politics.  I especially don’t like politics when religion is in the mix.

But, I really don’t like the nasty attacks and the lamb-to-slaughter advertising we see these days.

You’d think politicians would want to advertise the good work they’ve done in office, not just trash the opponent. But, constant trash-talk?  Well, that’s the name of the game now.  The candidates must now suck-up to royal Got-Rock-Backers to pay for ads that slime the opponent.

Created by Roger von Oech

The issue of campaign finance and slimy ads is a non partisan beef of mine, by the way.  Democrats play this game, too, although generally to a lesser degree.

I tend to get cynical around Presidential election years.  I despise the television ads and don’t trust most politicians.

I don’t want to believe that the Make-the-Other-Guy-A-Slime-Ball game even exists.  But it does – the game has been years in the making, too.

Yeap.  The game must be played.  When a candidate today doesn’t play the game and get backed by a Mr. or Mrs. Got-Rocks with a slimy agenda, say bye-bye to that candidate.

The winner of an election, it seems to me, goes to whomever can out-spend and out-slime the other guy.

Game-winners are those able to pay clever writers who craft wild stories out of whole-cloth.

Remember a time when “Swift-Boating” ads and tactics didnt‘t win elections?   I can’t.

“Swift-boating,” though not in Webster’s dictionary – is defined, depending on how you look at it, as either whistle-blowing on a bad-guy, or re-writing the history of a good guy.

Regardless, it is now an election-year strategy that is bought and paid for by the American people, in more ways than one. Blood sport, really.  Power is at stake.

Anyway, getting back to what I intended to write about: Looking to the past.  Here is my short look-back at the words of John F. Kennedy (JFK):

The voters selected us, in short, because they had confidence in our judgement and our ability to exercise that judgement from a position where we could determine what were their own best interest, as a part of the nation’s interest.  From JFK’s Profiles in Courage, 1956.

The Chinese use two brush strokes to write the word “crisis”. One brush stroke stands for danger; the other for opportunity. In a crisis, be aware of the danger — but recognize the opportunity.  1959 Speech

The New Frontier of which I speak is not a set of promises — it is a set of challenges. It sums up not what I intend to offer the American people, but what I intend to ask of them.  Acceptance Speech as the Democratic presidential nominee

If by a “Liberal” they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people — their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights, and their civil liberties — someone who believes we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad, if that is what they mean by a “Liberal,” then I’m proud to say I’m a “Liberal.” 1960 speech in New York.

In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility — I welcome it. I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it — and the glow from that fire can truly light the world.  And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.

And finally, this….

For of those to whom much is given, much is required. And when at some future date the high court of history sits in judgment on each of us—recording whether in our brief span of service we fulfilled our responsibilities to the state—our success or failure, in whatever office we hold, will be measured by the answers to four questions:

  • First, were we truly men of courage—with the courage to stand up to one’s enemies—and the courage to stand up, when necessary, to one’s associates—the courage to resist public pressure, as well as private greed?
  • Secondly, were we truly men of judgment—with perceptive judgment of the future as well as the past—of our mistakes as well as the mistakes of others—with enough wisdom to know what we did not know and enough candor to admit it?
  • Third, were we truly men of integrity—men who never ran out on either the principles in which we believed or the men who believed in us—men whom neither financial gain nor political ambition could ever divert from the fulfillment of our sacred trust?
  • Finally, were we truly men of dedication—with an honor mortgaged to no single individual or group, and comprised of no private obligation or aim, but devoted solely to serving the public good and the national interest?

Courage—judgment—integrity—dedication—these are the historic qualities … which, with God’s help … will characterize our Government’s conduct in the 4 stormy years that lie ahead.  1961 speech.

“Courage—judgment—integrity—dedication,” said JFK, are the qualities that should define us.   I believe our current President is the embodiment of these qualities.

I believe Obama is both the hope and the keeper of faith that the American People need now.

And that’s my look to the past and to the future.

7
Dec

Hillary Clinton – A role model for all

Hillary is speaking from Geneva in this wonderful talk about Human Rights and the GLBT community.

3
Dec

What is marriage and what is hate?

Marriage is a symbol of love between two human beings, usually.  Well, unless those two human beings are the same gender.   If two human beings are the same gender, such a symbol is not available for them to own – well, only in a few states.

But, in the US, marriage is the union of two persons.  Simple, right?  Not for the Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual and Transgender (GLBT) people.  Such a union is mostly outlawed, like in the wild-wild-west.

It’s difficult for me to understand what is the problem with same-sex marriage?

If Tom and Teresa can own the symbol, why can’t Tom and Terry?   Ahhhh, it’s how we perceive Tom and Terry or Sue and Karen – they are not like us therefore they are beneath us therefore they are not deserving of the basic human rights you and I enjoy.

To deny persons who are part of a GLBT community the right to marry, or to deny them anything at all based on sexual identity, is so obviously absurdly wrong! Well, to me it is.  Well, to most of us it is.

The people in power, those with religious power especially, cannot allow people who are hated as a group, any benefit that might encourage them to be happy.   Marriage would make people in the GLBT community happy.  That’s not good.  No no no no no.

If the GLBTs were happy the religious leaders would hate the political leaders for allowing that to happen.  That would be bad for the political leaders – they’d not get re-elected.   Then the religious leaders would put someone with more hate into power and everyone would be worse off.   If society got anymore hateful, a fertilized egg after a one-night-stand would have rights.   In fact, if the really hateful religious leaders had their way, a fertilized egg would have more rights than the gay, lesbian, bi-sexual or transgendered person.

It’s bully-ism on a large-scale.  (Not sure bully-ism is a word, but you know what I mean, right?!)  I think hate is synonymous with Bullying.   GLBT (and too many others, namely immigrants), are the prime targets of school bullying.

We sit aghast at the stories coming from elementary and high schools about bullying and the resulting suicides.  But, do we realize that children, when they terrorize other children, are mirroring what they know adults and flaky pastors hate?

By the way, I don’t hate religion – I don’t hate anything, other than inequality.  I hate only hate.

I hate the hate of a Religious Right kind of hate because I see it becoming systemic in America.

What am I talking about?

I’m referring to the Religious Right who are not really religious but who thump the Christian bible because they think it will translate into political power.  I’m talking about the “Christians” who think God tells them to hate and to deny the rights of people they don’t even know.  I’m talking about the people who claim they take the bible literally but when push comes to shove they can’t but are loath to admit it.  I’m talking about the hate that is, religiously speaking, ironic because it promotes separation and racism.   I’m talking about the hate that denies equality to large  segments of society who are as deserving as you and I.

When two consenting adults wish to symbolize or honor their partnership, just as heterosexuals do, it should be a non issue.  It goes without saying that divorce trumps the statistics of those who stay married, that’s a non-starter though.  The issue is really not about that – that’s adding a negative to a the positiveness of love between the partnership of two people of the same-sex.

How in the world can people hate who they don’t know?  Why would anyone deny persons they don’t know the chance to experience happiness?  Who gives Sam – who has never left the state of Texas – the right to tell Joe, in Florida – a stranger to him, that he cannot have this or that piece of happiness?

So, what is marriage to the haters?  What is marriage to the GBLTs?   It’s the same thing – or will be when the GLBTs have the right to it.  The real difference between the GLBT marriage and the Hetero marriage is that one is more often made up of a love that is lasting.

This video explains it so much better than I ever could.

Two Lesbians Raised A Baby And This Is What They Got.

22
Jan

good night, and good luck

Last night Keith Olbermann said “good night, and good luck” for the final time on MSNBC.  It was an abrupt ending to an eight year long stint for Olbermann.

Not a soul is talking about why he so abruptly left, everyone is guessing.  The most likely reason?  Olbermann, very much a liberal, may not have wanted to work, or be associated with Comcast, the right leaning mega conglomerate who just obtained the rights to buy out NBC Universal.

NBC has stated the Comcast buy-out is not the reason for Olbermann’s departure.  However, it is strange that no explanation is given, which leaves us with so many questions.

I enjoyed Olbermann’s sparkling, biting and colorful repartee with his guests.  I loved that he was open and unapologetic in his battering of Bill O’Reilly, the FOX news commentator who has made a name for himself by acting like a buffoon; Glenn Beck (I don’t know where Glenn Beck is currently, hopefully he is off the air), and the drug dependent Rush Limbaugh.  Olbermann would castigate these three characters almost nightly for their blatant hypocrisy, calling them “the worst persons in the world” which was a nightly segment of his one hour “Countdown” show.

One of Olbermann’s proudest accomplishments, however, was the fact that his show raised over 2 million dollars for the National Association of Free Clinics They are an non-profit 501c(3) organization established to assist the millions of people in this country who go without any health-care.

The video clip that I have included here is the conclusion of last nights final show in which Olbermann so eloquently says good-bye and thanks the audience; then reads from Thurber, as he did every Friday night.

This particular Thurber story is called “Scottie Who Knew Too Much.”  And, the moral of the story, aptly is: “It’s better to ask some of the questions than to know all of the answers.”

Indeed it is.

Keith’s final moments:

12
Jan

“there’s consequences to that action”

I need to say a few words concerning Sarah Palin’s video release today – a perfect example of what not to say after a tragedy.  But, Sarah Palin has about as much sensitivity as a Mack truck.

In her video today she says:

..journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn.  That is reprehensible.

“Blood libel.”  Using such a word to blame the media for “manufacturing a blood libel” is at best counterproductive, at its worst, ignorant.

Or is it?

Michael Shear, a political writer for the New York Times, points out:

The term blood libel is generally used to mean the false accusation that Jews murder Christian children to use their blood in religious rituals, in particular the baking of matzos for passover. That false claim was circulated for centuries to incite anti-Semitism and justify violent pogroms against Jews. Ms. Palin’s use of the phrase in her video, which helped make it rapidly go viral, is itself attracting criticism, not least because Ms. Giffords, who remains in critical condition in a Tucson hospital, is Jewish.

However, I would like to point out that others have used this phrase in discussion of the aftermath of the tragedy in Tuscon.  Whether Sarah Palin’s speech writers used this term knowingly, is anyone’s guess.  Regardless, to say it reeks of poor taste is an understatement.

In a recent New York Times editorial, Paul Krugman pointed out this important fact when discussing the growing concern over the rhetoric of some right-wing extremists:

The Department of Homeland Security reached the same conclusion: in April of 2009 an internal report warned that right-wing extremism was on the rise, with a growing potential for violence.

Although the Tuscon shooter was obviously a troubled young man, he was not blind to what was going on in the world of politics.  It’s been reported the FBI found other written threats against Gabrielle Giffords authored by the shooter.

The facts are these: A violent extremist culture has been brewing in this country for a long time.  Yes, it’s all just words, words, words, but the hate that surrounds us on TV and the radio, does have consequences when something is stirred in the psyche of madmen.

9
Jan

in the cross-hairs

When the vitriolic rhetoric of some Americans in politics, in radio, or in television, graphically targets others, using cross-hairs on a hate map, we are in trouble.

When horrific hate-talk threatens the very essence of sensibility and civility, the rights that we cherish are in danger.  Political hate-talk, if left unchecked, threatens what Thomas Jefferson called our rights to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”.

We constantly hear angry mouthpieces like Sarah Palin who cry, “Don’t retreat, reload.” And Bill O’Reily, Rush, Joyce Kaufman, and their ilk, who sensationalize hate and killing and guns using maps and websites that brazenly depict political districts as if they were war-zones.  What does this say about us as a country?

Why do we allow our government servants to target one another by virtue of a political bent?

What can we do when politicians or talking heads say things like: “if ballots don’t work bullets will?”

I don’t have an answer.  But, I would ask the people who are the mouthpieces in this country to realize that people listen to them, and take seriously their hate talk. People who are not quite all there mentally, who can buy a gun as easily as I buy chewing gum, to settle imagined or delusional scores, do listen to you. Words ARE weapons.

I feel helpless in this fight.  I stand by and watch this hate and ignorance spread and feel hopeless because there seem to be so few answers.  And, those in government who do have answers, aren’t talking.

I hope and pray that, as a result of yesterday’s tragedy in Tuscon, Arizona, we will let dialogue, not diatribe, stretch and reach out across the land, silencing the hatred that political animosity has created – is creating.

We need to take some deep, deep breaths in this country. Let’s regain our civility as a people, as a nation of human beings with empathy for the common good. Of course, good for one does not translate into good for all, but we can start with civility.

Let’s hope that our 112th Congress, as they take this coming week off to regroup after the tragic events in Tuscon, will put aside their political brains and use their human brains to realize that hate speech engenders more hate, and more hate, and more hate and more hate until we become a nation of gun-toting, trigger-haired, lunatics.

Listen to Keith Olberman.

7
Dec

we’ve lost her

Elizabeth Edwards has died.  Only 61.  Breast cancer. Insidious. It. Spread.

Elizabeth Edwards Credit: Scott Olson / Getty Images

Oh why were you kept on the chemotherapy treatments up until your time to go, Elizabeth?    I suppose it was your choice, but it seems cruel for your doctors to have done this to you.

You must have been suffering great pain.

You’re free now.  But we’re left with the pain of your going.   So desperately sad you’ve left us.

You will be missed, Elizabeth.  Your brilliance, your warmth, and your wit lives on in the hearts of so many of us who looked to you as a role model.  But oh how you will be missed.

Goodnight Elizabeth, and may Wade sing you lullabies now.

6
Dec

to elizabeth edwards

It is reported today that Elizabeth Edwards, former estranged wife of Senator John Edwards, is nearing the end of her time here on this good earth.

The doctors have advised that she not continue her cancer treatments as they are doing little good, the cancer is too advanced now.  Elizabeth is, reportedly, resting at home with family.

I have been very fond of Elizabeth Edwards for a long time now.  She has inspired me by the courageous life she leads.  She is a noble, valiant woman; a role model and stalwart icon of sorts. Why, she barely flinched when it was revealed that her cancer was inoperable and would likely kill her sooner rather than later.  The news of the seriousness of her cancer came as John Kerry and John Edwards were in the throes of their 2004 Presidential campaign.  I seem to recall that she did not reveal, even to John, that her cancer had spread for fear it would take his focus away from the campaign.

And now, her end is near and still she rises to the occasion and issues a loving missive regarding what it means to live with a hopeful and grateful heart:

You all know that I have been sustained throughout my life by three saving graces — my family, my friends, and a faith in the power of resilience and hope. These graces have carried me through difficult times and they have brought more joy to the good times than I ever could have imagined. The days of our lives, for all of us, are numbered. We know that. And yes, there are certainly times when we aren’t able to muster as much strength and patience as we would like. It’s called being human. But I have found that in the simple act of living with hope, and in the daily effort to have a positive impact in the world, the days I do have are made all the more meaningful and precious. And for that I am grateful. It isn’t possible to put into words the love and gratitude I feel towards everyone who has and continues to support and inspire me every day. To you I simply say: you know.  Source:  The Huntington Post

Yes, the days of our lives are numbered.  And the days go so quickly, don’t they?  I think so many of us never realize in our teens and twenties, that life is not forever.  We realize in our fifties, I think, that the days go by so quickly!

So relentlessly fast is this jouney called life!  If only we knew how fast it went!

Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it?—every, every minute?  ~ Our Town, by Thorton Wilder,

I believe that Elizabeth Edwards does appreciate life every, every minute.  She has known such tragedy, as have many of us, but her tragedy has been so public and she’s reacted with a grace that many of us could only hope to own.

When her former estranged husband, John Edwards, candidate for President in 2008, was found to have been cheating on her, she did not show disgust or disdain, did not appear to wish him harm or react with hateful spite.  She did not play the victim either, she’s far to noble for that role.  She simply faced it and moved on with such simplicity of purpose.  The marriage ended, and that was that.  She had more life to live, thank you very much, she seemed to say.

And now she faces the end of her life.  A life cut too short.  I do wish she had another twenty, or so years left to continue to inspire me.

When I read that the end was near for her, my first thought was a realization that she will soon be reunited with her deceased son, Wade (Wade died in a car accident in 1996.)

Wade’s death wreaked havoc on the Edwards family, as the death of a beloved child would to any family, to Elizabeth and John, it changed them dramatically.  They began their focus on civil service as a result of Wade’s death because they realized they wanted to give back to people and be good citizens of the world.

I don’t know what happened to John Edwards along the way.  Suffice it to say, he eventually followed a different path.

But this is about Elizabeth, not John.

Elizabeth.  Dear Elizabeth.

I pray that your travels are soft as you take up your flight home.

Peace be with you always.  Rest now.

19
Feb

it’s not only about Uganda, it’s about how far it can go. An important article written by Kathleen Parker, The Washington Post, Thursday, February 18, 2010

Who will stand against Uganda’s brutal anti-gay law?

map of Uganda courtesy of Lonely Planet.com

Thankfully, Kathleen Parker has written a piece discussing the atrocities occurring in Uganda.  It’s a good piece, and provides links and references to other aspects of this story.  I would encourage you to read it.

I have been hearing about these atrocities in Uganda for a few months now, not in the main stream press so much, but NPR has had a few stories, and now Rachel Maddow, the Goddess that she is, has pointed to this article in today’s Washington Post.

The scary thing about this is there is some evidence that some folks in the American government, or in lofty positions in politics, are well aware of the hate and the murder of anyone purported to be gay in Uganda.

This is a must read.  But, what can we do about this when there are so many problems in the world – Haiti chief among them?   What can we do?  Knowledge is key, I think.  With knowledge of this we can talk about it and air the dirty complicity of some in the American government and others like Rick Warren who not only turned a blind eye to it, is said to have championed the cause.  Warren denies any involvement.

Now, what is so frightening about the killing of homosexuals is the fact that it is a LAW.

According to Kathleen Parker, we (U.S.) have done our part to fan flames to “help stop the homosexualization of the country” (Parker, WP, 2010).

Gays in Uganda already face imprisonment for up to 14 years. Under a bill proposed last October by David Bahati, the government could execute HIV-positive men and jail people who don’t report homosexual activities.

You know what?  If the religious fanatic right can do this in Uganda, what part of the world will they influence next?  How long before this  spreads to all parts of the world?

I think we need to pay close attention to Uganda.

Wouldn’t you agree?

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