We Wish Him Well

He says he’s innocent…. of course he does.  The only men stepping up and saying they did what their accusers said they did are paying the price, they have stood up, apologized, then stepped down. The message from the president is clear… he does not care what you do in your personal life as long as you are working hard for him and you are loyal.  In this #MeToo era he is dismissing accusers as vindictive and politically motivated meant to bring down his presidency.

I am not saying that sometimes people are falsely accused, I know from personal experiences that sometimes things are interpreted based on a history of the victim where an innocent comment or touch on the shoulder is twisted into something it is not or someone using the system to ruin someone’s life… THAT is completely different from domestic abuse, molestation, sexual harassment, or rape.

But THIS, this is women coming forward showing what happened to them behind closed doors, at the hands of a man helping run our country. Upstanding men, who are polite and respectful, who are hardworking, who do a very good job for an organization, can be violent and abusive at home.  They can have anger issues, they can keep their personal lives hidden, and, of course, they will claim to be innocent.

Our president doesn’t care about the ‘alleged’ victims… he has victims of his own… he wants to wish the man accused of the abuse well, give him the benefit of the doubt, and protect his own image.

What message are we sending to the men of our country? We need to speak more clearly about expectations.  Education for all is key… teach your children to respect themselves and others, and expect respect and kindness from your own partner. We all know about the cycle of abuse… well wishing never breaks that cycle.


Fourteen, So Far

Here we are at the beginning of February and there have been 14 school shootings in 2018… so far.  We don’t hear about most of them because most of them have not ended in a fatality, but they all involved a gun being fired at a school or on a school campus.  You can be certain that across our country guns have been brought to school and been discovered, before they were fired, many many times…

As a society. we all agree that no child should be in danger of being shot anywhere in our country but especially in our schools.  We can all agree that no child should bring a gun to school and we wring our hands at each announcement of tragedy befallen our most innocent.

I’m sorry, but if YOU own a gun and it is not locked up in a way that only you have access to it, YOU are contributing to our national problem.  It could potentially end up in the hands of a criminal, an addict, a child.  It could be used in a crime, a suicide, a school shooting.  Just by owning a gun, you are saying that you don’t get it.  You are saying that your rights are more important than the lives of innocent children.  Sorry, but you are part of the problem. If we didn’t have guns in our homes children would have a much more difficult time getting their hands on guns, it might not be impossible, but it would be much more difficult.  Shouldn’t we make it as difficult as possible for a child to get a gun?

Am I saying that I don’t support the 2nd Amendment? Yes, I am.  I care more about victims of tragedy than about people having to own guns, it is not a hard choice for me.  If I had a magic wand and could eliminate guns across our country, leaving them only in the hands of the police and military, I would do it.

There have been 14 school shootings this year…. so far.  It is only February 6th.

Thanks For Choosing Roseburg

I went for a run the other day and passed this lovely family (twice) as I circled Stewart Park… it was a beautiful day and as I waved for the second time, with both hands and a big smile, they all smiled and waved back, almost laughing at my cheerfulness.

They were a family of color, probably with relatives who originated somewhere very far away and I am grateful that they chose to make Roseburg their home.  Why?  Because they give me hope that our community will learn acceptance, love, tolerance and grow into a place where we are all more safe, where we all value education, libraries, and our environment.

Some of my most cherished friends and family, immigrants, have moved away to places more progressive… friends from Mexico, Ireland, Brazil… while others from, Japan, Australia, Israel, England, have chosen to stay. Our community is enriched by people who bring with them culture and ideas that are different from ours, we are not diminished, we are uplifted.

Our car was broken into the other night, by some guy, probably on drugs, who had no sense of respect for others.  WE are doing something wrong as a society when we vilify people who are trying to make a better life for themselves and their families by working hard and getting an education, when our own children are loosing themselves to drugs, video games, violence, and crime.  Hurling hateful rhetoric on-line, out car windows, and in classrooms, is spurred by the man who sits in our highest office, himself hurling hateful rhetoric… a twisting of the first amendment… free speech does not mean that you HAVE to be hateful or unkind… just because you CAN be does not mean that it is right. Being hateful is a choice.

Teaching children to love learning, value education and respect others begins at home. I know that our town is full of families who do just that.  So I am glad they will be joined by new families coming to live the American dream.  They are not takers, they are contributors, they are business owners, they are hard workers and I welcome them, smiling and waving as I run by.

I hope that our small community is overrun by people of color, by immigrants, by people who may not attend the popular church or any church… diversity is our path to a better society.  So, thank you for choosing Roseburg  …  we need you.

The Desensitization of a Nation

We have spent the past few decades gravitating towards a level of sensitivity and political correctness that has surpassed and suppressed our baser selves and previous insensitive and brass generations. Sadly, we are coming to the end of an era, a proverbial backlash as the pendulum swings towards the opposite end of the spectrum.  Whether he said it or not, his s***h*** comment was repeated over and over again on cable news stations all week long.  One interview I saw had a former international relations expert who not only used that language but racial slurs including the n-word more than once!  The news anchor he was talking to, who happened to be black, did not bat an eye!  I almost choked… he was making a point rather than calling someone that name, but it was still shocking.

Those baser selves, the Make America Great clan have a leader, and sadly they have joined together with decent people who were hoodwinked into thinking he would make our country better.  Okay, I will give you that the economy is booming and many people have been promised more money in their bank accounts… but is that what is most important to us as a people?  Money?

Have we lost our moral compass, our ideals, the meaning of America, our sense of justice?

The outrage is constant, but when a certain level of anger or outrage is maintained, it becomes normal and we no longer are shocked.

The more our president, OUR PRESIDENT, uses the kind of language we don’t accept from our own children and spouts the ideals we are ashamed to call our own, the more his base (those baser Americans) feels empowered to spew their hatred in their own small communities across our country.

I hope you are planning on marching next Saturday to show that those of us who still believe that we WERE moving in the right direction before this deplorable man came to power does not represent who we are as a nation.

Happy New Year ~ Looking Ahead

What did you do with your year? Sometimes surviving the year is enough.  So much loss and tragedy across our country, but if you were lucky enough to make it to this point without personally being touched by loss, illness, or financial troubles, then you are fortunate and perhaps you have spent your year making changes in the lives of the people around you.

Wishes of health, happiness, and peace in the new year are repeated in various forms across all social media.  I hope that these sentiments come true and that we all have a healthy and happy 2018.  I know that many things are out of our control, but years ago someone told me that we shouldn’t say ‘have a great day’, we should say ‘make it a great day’.  I think about this idea often.  Much of our happiness depends on our outlook on life.

So, for 2018, I hope you walk on the sunny side of the street, make things happen, be involved, find the silver lining, smile, move your body, be kind, make healthy choices, meet adversity with optimism and hope, and always ‘Look for the joy’!



As our year comes closer to an end I hope that you have felt that your year has had purpose.  If nothing else, this new administration has given rise to the voices of many who once sat by silently letting their government officials do whatever it is they do.  If you are reading this, perhaps you are one of those voices who has joined the chorus of outraged patriots who are watching our country slide down a slippery slope of hatred, greed, bigotry, and violence.

3.2 trillion dollars of tax cuts will have a huge impact on our country.  It will be interesting to see the ramifications of this change.  We won’t know for a while… money for government programs that people need will be at risk.  Stay alert to small changes in the coming years… will you need to push back your retirement date, pay more for your health insurance? Who knows how this will affect our lives in the future.

Although our country is being led by a buffoon, our outrage is what will save us.  It is our obligation to fight for peace, love, joy, compassion, and taking care of not only our fellow citizens, but ALL people of this country and the world.

Your purpose, to this end, can be manifested every day.  Thinking critically about what you say and do, how you treat your family, friends and those who are not your friends, what you post and how you comment… what is your purpose? Are you making this world better with your actions, are you improving the lives of the people around you, are you helping rather than hurting? Are you walking through this world consciously with thought of your actions and comments?  Each day you have a choice to raise your voice against stupidity, hatred, and greed.  Each day you have a choice to raise your voice for kindness, mindfulness, love and peace.

You have a purpose, choose wisely…

The Net and You

I am not tech savvy and all this talk of Net Neutrality has not drawn my focus… I have been more obsessed with Trump’s antics, Moore’s pedophilia, the Russia investigation, the revision of our tax code, the declaration of Jerusalem as the capitol of Israel, and all of the revelations of sexual harassment by men in power…

But, here I am on my computer, working on the Net, hoping that people will have an opportunity to read my latest blog and wondering how ending Net Neutrality will really affect my life.

The motivation of Trump and the head of the FCC is once again transparent.  Just like all of Trump’s appointments, the new FCC, Ajit Pai, although originally appointed by Obama, at the recommendation of Mitch McConnell,  was once a lawyer for Verison and has continually worked against Net Neutrality.

So, although Trump and Pai claim that ending Net Neutrality will benefit the American people it is clear that the benefactors of this change will be the owners of big companies who can pay to have their content pushed to the head of your search engines.  It will make you, the consumer, pay to see what you want on the net and limit your exposure.  No longer will you be able to have the world at your fingertips because some content will be so far down on the list you would have to weigh through page after page of options before you find that obscure video.  We will pay more for less, and big business will once again be rewarded.

Our internet is a model help up by the world as the gold standard of freedom… this will be one more way Trump will be hurting our international reputation, hurting the little guy and benefiting those who already have wealth and power. Once again we need to speak up, contact our representatives in Congress and protest this rollback of sensible regulations meant to keep our internet a place for the free exchange of information.

If you are reading my blog now you are doing so because of Net Neutrality.  Without it you might have to buy a package that had wordpress included in it or be blocked from seeing content that is not part of your internet package.  Two years ago one of my first blogs went viral and was seen by almost 70,000 people world wide… without Net Neutrality that never could have happened. The free exchange of ideas on the internet is what makes someone living in small town America able to learn about the world, participate in conversation, or run a small business on equal footing with someone in a larger city.  This will affect EVERYONE who uses the internet for information, for communication, for commerce. EVERYONE

Remember that this change will not benefit small business or consumers, it will benefit big corporations and large internet conglomerations … just like all of Trump’s moves, it is disguised as something good for America, let there be no question… it is not.