Friday, June 24, 2016

Higher Ground

So once again it’s that time when I look at the calendar and realize  weeks/months/years have passed since I last vented and railed against the world…. For first timers, this is my periodic rant against injustice … think of it as a documented soul cleansing. 

I believe that reading, writing, and literacy are the foundations to success, and that not enough of us read.  Really read.  You need to read more. If you get all your news from one source – whether it is Fox News or the New York Times or the National Enquirer, you are hopelessly uninformed.   Read newspapers and magazines and learn to form well-rounded opinions based on facts – not thirty second sound bites picked up from Fox or NPR.  Because one source cannot possibly give you that complete and well-rounded basis to form an educated opinion anybody wants to hear or discuss.

I believe there is not enough accountability and personal responsibility in the world today. 

And that there is a lack of reasonable, intelligent political debate and conversation.  I’m not sure when everything changed and compromise went out the window, but it’s hard to have faith in either political party or the direction our country is going when they are unable to work towards common goals. Maybe part of the problem is that people are not reading enough to form educated opinions required of politicians.

If you support a candidate who is a bigot – especially one who is a misogynistic racist preaching hate under the banner of “making America great again”, than most likely you are a bigot too.  We need leaders who unite- not divide.  I cannot support any candidate who is consumed with hate and neither should you.  We are better than that.  America is better than that.  We don’t need to take back America because it’s still here – moving forward, evolving, and changing.  If you believe we need to take back America, you need to explain where exactly it’s gone and what those words “take back America” really mean.  Immigrants aren’t the enemy – we are a nation of immigrants.  

The Founding Fathers knew this when they wrote the Constitution and it is one of the cornerstones of who we are as a nation (check out the words inscribed on that cool green statue the French gave us – the one that sits in the middle of New York Harbor and welcomes “huddled masses yearning to breathe free”).  The Constitution protects all persons from governmental deprivation of life, liberty and property without due process.  And if you want to argue that the Founding Fathers could not have foreseen terrorists hiding as immigrants so that changes everything, then you can’t argue that your 2nd Amendment rights are protected by the Constitution because a “well-regulated militia” trumps the intent those same Founding Fathers had when they wrote that passage. You can’t have it both ways. 

And by the way, stop being scared of American Muslims. The guy who is pissed off because the Starbucks barista got his double mocha cappuccino wrong or the road-rage fueled driver who cut you off on the way to work are more of a threat than any American Muslim.   American Christians are not under attack either. Nobody is persecuting Christians and nobody is trying to take away your Bible (83% of Americans identify themselves as Christian –tough persecuting any group with that kind of majority).  Stop whining that Christians are being persecuted because it makes you sound stupid. And uninformed.

If you want to connect religious fanaticism to terrorists, start with Christians.  White Christian males kill people will alarming frequency in this country – more than Muslims and Jews do.  That is a fact. You can read more right here

Speaking of facts... there actually is a difference between facts, opinions and propaganda. People need to learn the difference.

Another fact: Domestic Violence is a national health crisis. It affects people across all races, religions, and income levels in ways that are seen and unseen.  If you don’t understand that, you need to read more about it.  It’s a scary topic and although many of your friends would rather not see posts about it on Facebook because pictures of kitten are safer and less threatening, you need to put it in their faces and make them deal with it.  No problems are ever solved by ignoring them.

Same with sexual violence. If you’re a parent, start by teaching your sons not to rape. And to respect women.

And speaking of Facebook, stop sharing Facebook memes that tell me to share/like a Jesus post or else Jesus won’t bless me or answer my prayers or start my car on a cold winter morning.   That’s not how prayer works. God and Jesus don’t log onto Facebook or Twitter or Instagram to check the prayer registry.  Maybe while you’re reading, you can add the Bible to your reading list.

And stop trotting out Bible passages to support inane arguments- especially when you take them out of context.  Because in the same book of the Bible that right-wing religious conservatives use to support bullshit anti-gay agendas is a passage about stoning to death unruly children.  If you believe in Jesus and have spent more than fifteen minutes in church or Sunday school, you should know that he would have embraced gays, the poor, etc.  

Gay people aren’t the enemy and neither are transsexuals, no matter how you want to interpret the Bible.  

Guns kill people. That’s what they are designed to do. But it is possible to maintain 2nd Amendment rights with reasonable gun control laws – background checks, banning semi-automatic weapons, etc- if we are willing to not only use some common sense, but stand up to the NRA and do what’s right for everyone. The right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (which includes safety in my house, my neighborhood, and the places I shop) is not superceded by someone elses right to own a semi-automatic.

That’s all for now. 

Thank you for taking the time to stop by.

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