What We Need To Fear


I know that Donald Trump is telling us that the world is crumbling all around us. He paints an apocalyptic picture that goads us into fearing everyone outside of our own circle.

I’m not actually afraid, on a daily basis, of ISIS or of my Muslim neighbors or Mexican rapists.

Here’s what I fear.

The ignorance of far too many of my fellow citizens, that’s what.

Yesterday we woke up to find that our router wasn’t working. We headed off to the nearest coffee shop to use their wifi and cheer up with pumpkin lattes.

The lattes were great, the wifi was spotty. We were talking about our frustration with unreliable internet service when another customer chimed in. He asked if the wifi was up and running, saying that he had planned to get some work done, too.

“The internet everywhere is acting up,” he said. I agreed, thinking about new cable being laid and the recent hacking.

“It’s another Obama move, you know,” the man said. “Another executive order. He turned over control of the internet to the U.N.”

This man was not crazy. He was not a beat up smelly derelict. He was a guy about our age, from our town, drinking coffee and getting some work done.

There was a silence for a few seconds. Then I shook my head. “Uh, no…,” I began. He interrupted me to repeat, “Yes. Obama passed an executive order giving control of the internet to the U.N. It’s all part of the globalization plan.”

Now, my husband is both smart and non-confrontational. He shrugged and said, “Who know. Maybe so.”

But I couldn’t. I couldn’t let that go. I mean, that statement was ignorant on so many levels!

“That’s not true.” I said to the man. “That isn’t even possible.”

“Oh,” the guy said, turning away. “You’re Hillary supporters. OK. I’m for Trump. All about Trump.”

It would be easy to dismiss this guy as an idiot. But I don’t think that’s the problem. What I wanted to do, what I want to do now, is to ask him “Did you check your sources?”

It would be SOOOOO easy to look up “Obama Executive Orders.”  Or to research, “Does Obama control the U.N.?”  It would be a snap to google “Who controls the internet?”

It’s so easy to find out information. Easier than it has ever been.

There is no excuse for ignorance.

That’s what I fear. The ignorant and uninformed.

 

Aw, what’s a little pneumonia anyway?


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A New England Autumn

It’s funny. I was just sitting here, feeling the nice cool autumn breeze. So refreshing!

For some unfathomable reason, I started to think about that time a few years ago. I had been fighting asthma for a few weeks, and no matter what I did, it seemed to just keep getting worse. I was a fifth grade teacher at the time, and I had to talk all day. I had to talk over 25  happy ten year olds. I had to talk over the sound of the kids in the hallway and the kids in the cafeteria.

My throat was always sore and I was hoarse. And the asthma was making me short of breath and a little dizzy.

I remember that I was on two different inhalers, an antihistamine by day and a different one by night, a nose spray and some herbal things.

That cough just kept building up on me. But you know what? I was a typical working woman. I just kept plugging along. I didn’t miss one day of school.

Finally, though, I did break down and go the doctor. He told me that I had a fairly serious case of bronchitis and was “well on the way” to pneumonia.  He changed one of my inhalers, added prednisone and a strong antibiotic.

He suggested that I take a few days to recuperate.

But I was a fifth grade teacher, with 25 kids depending on me. Plus, it was the week of our annual three day camping adventure in the woods of New Hampshire. I tried to drink extra water and eat well. I went to bed early when I could.

I didn’t stay home, though. I didn’t go to bed.

Actually, I packed my bag and grabbed all my medicines. Then I got on the big yellow bus and took 75 fifth graders on a camping trip in the cold rain.

You know why?

Because I’m a woman. I just didn’t think a little pneumonia would be that big a deal.

Ya know?

 

“I’m Rubber, You’re Glue.”


If you’ve been watching or reading about the American presidential election for the past year or so, you will no doubt have noticed that one candidate is acting more like a child than a world leader.

Naturally, I mean no disrespect to children, but you know know what I mean.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has made a name for himself by acting like every elementary school’s playground bully. He insults people, he swears in public, he threatens violence against everyone he dislikes.

He pretends to be more powerful than he really is, and expects everyone around him to grand him the same level of worship that he grants to himself.

Some of his quotes are beyond unbelievable. When asked by a journalist whether he honestly considered it proper to praise the dictator Vladimir Putin, Trump said:

“If he says great things about me, I’ll say great things about him.”

Just like a fourth grader. An immature fourth grader.

Now I think I have an explanation for Trump’s sudden fixation on Hillary Clinton’s health. He is playing the classic frustrated kid game of “I’m rubber and you’re glue. Everything you say bounces off me and sticks to you.”

You remember that, right? It was usually the response you got when you were trying to argue with the most annoying kid in the class because he won’t stop making fun of everyone.

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Think about it. “I’m rubber, you’re glue.”

Trump runs a completely fake foundation. The (ahem) Donald J. Trump Foundation has no employees other than the Trump kids. Trump uses the money donated by third parties to buy himself presents. The IRS has serious concerns about them falsifying records.

Ergo: Trump keeps demanding a federal probe of the Clinton Foundation, which is an actual world wide philanthropy.

Trump demonstrates symptoms and evidence of several disorders. There has been speculation that the man has a language disorder, an attentional disorder, a serious personality disorder and possible Alzheimer’s or dementia. He has steadfastly refused to release his medical records. He’s tried to get around the demands by releasing a ridiculous fake letter that was mocked by the whole world.

So what is Trump doing? He’s claiming that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has a brain injury, seizures, even a language disorder herself. Conservatives are going crazy trying to come up with some phony information about her health.

Seriously! It’s “I’m rubber and you’re glue.” What makes it so frustrating is that its working. I don’t hear anyone in the media talking about the Donald J. Trump phony Foundation. I don’t hear them speculating about why the man can’t finish a single sentence, or what the hell he’s trying to hide by trying to fake his medical records.

He’s rubber, she’s glue and it’s making me crazy.

Let me leave you with one thought, though.

Trump keeps repeating the insulting “Crooked Hillary” name for his opponent. He just loves to yell about her being a crook.

Yeah. We know exactly what that says about him.

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Why I Am Not Blue


I am pretty passionate about my right to vote. I am a student of American history.  I love, in a visceral way, the story of how those revolutionaries not only toppled the monarchy but went on to create a democratic republic.

But you know what?

I am so NOT a fan of the “two party system.”  I am a progressive.  A liberal.  A lefty. A socialist in a lot of ways.

I don’t find my positions supported by either of the two giant political parties that now dominate every single election in this country.

I’m a Bernie voter. That means that I am now under all kinds of pressure from the Hillary crew, who want me to throw my vote to their candidate.  They are becoming increasingly shrill as they yell at me about “throwing away” my vote, or “voting for Trump” just because I refuse to give my precious one vote to Mrs. Clinton.

But here’s the thing.  I never signed up to vote “Blue, no matter who.”  Never. I agree with John Adams, a guy who put his life on the line to overthrow tyranny.  He said this:

“There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution.”

If anyone has a right to speak on the two party system, I have to believe it would be John Adams.  I do NOT support a system which leaves all of the power in the hands of two small elitist groups.

I am a progressive.  Hillary Clinton is a main stream Democrat. I believe, after having researched and thought deeply, that a vote for her is a vote for a continuation of the current administration.

I do NOT want to continue the drone strikes and the endless wars. I do NOT want the government to continue to rake in billions of dollars in interest on student loans. I do NOT want the government to be owned and operated by lobbyists and special interests. I do NOT want the oil/gas industry to continue to decide our energy policy.

I am a progressive.

I believe in a multi-party system. I believe in voting for the candidate who best reflects my beliefs.

I will NOT vote “blue, no matter who.”

What the hell, folks? Have we really given up our free thinking, our beliefs, our independence?

THINK HARD before you vote.

There are other alternatives.

Green Party.

Socialist Party.

Libertarian Party.