I’m tired. Mentally, physically and emotionally. Being tired is a relatively common occurrence and to be expected throughout life based on the busyness of our day, how hard we partied the night before, or from the burdens of juggling a busy life in an attempt to be everything for everyone. Tired can be a rewarding feeling, the result of a job well done. Being “busy” can be an emotional escape from the painful things that disturb our existence…a busyness that leaves us at the end of a day dropping into an exhausted sleep and there to hopefully recharge our battery to be armed for another day.

America has been assaulted for the past two years and beaten into a state of exhaustion as we have watched the “norms” of the Presidency be reduced to a heap of ashes. As I watched the stately and solemn tributes being paid to a true American hero, I found myself weeping for what America has lost. Many times I didn’t agree with John McCain’s position, his hawkish nature, but my admiration of the man and what he stood for, the life he lived doing what he truly believed was right, was an honorable one. What a stark contrast from the self-centered egotistical narcissistic child currently playing grownup in the People’s House. This man-child, who everyday demonstrates his inadequacies and ignorance about basic civic and judicial knowledge, is putting every American at home and abroad at risk.

And then bombshell after bombshell explodes exposing just how unstable this corrupt president is as Bob Woodward’s new book Fear is released and an anonymous source in the New York Times op/ed page trumpets there is an undercover coupe in place within the White House…staff that scurry around trying to secret from the American public just how broken this administration is. For a long time now I have considered anyone who continues to support and facilitate this unhinged corrupt grifter family as being complicit in the craziness and danger that is the whirling dervish encompassing America today. History will not be kind to them.

November is rapidly approaching and if you value some of the basic freedoms of a democracy, then vote! Freedoms that encompass things like being free to love who one chooses, freedom that believes and supports the equality of each person no matter race, color, creed, freedom to enjoy clean air and water, freedom for women to have a choice about what happens to their own bodies. Help register people to vote, drive people to the polls, vote early, vote as if your life depends upon it because it very well may be a life and death issue for many American citizens.

Wake Up America!


If you are a Democrat, Progressive, Independent or Liberal your world is reeling right now. So just what does being one of “those” mean to me? It means I care about my fellow humans. It means  I acknowledge they have the same rights that I have…rights afforded to us by our Constitution. It means if I see an injustice in progress, I will voice an objection. It means I believe that everyone should be entitled to a decent wage for services rendered. It means  I believe women and men doing the same job should be equal on the pay scale. It means I value our environment. It means  I acknowledge climate change.  It means  women’s rights are human rights. It means  I believe  healthcare is a right not a privilege for the rich. It means I believe that public schools are a good and necessary thing. It means I am a patriot. It means I am an American first and this means more to me than a party name.

In a perfect world, everyone would take care of their neighbors or people in need. Unfortunately, the world is not filled with altruistic people. It also contains self-centered people, individuals driven by greed, individuals who live by the philosophy of “every man for himself”. The mindset of these people makes it necessary for there to be laws that enforce protections for the weak or vulnerable among us. It would be a perfect world if every state would do its part, but unfortunately, once again, this doesn’t always happen. For years, Jim Crow laws in the South have suppressed the African-American vote. And even when it wasn’t a law, there existed an undercurrent of “that’s just the way it is done”.

I vividly remember as a child seeing different restrooms for white and “colored”, different water fountains labeled white and colored and when riding a public transportation bus, the accepted norm in the South was that blacks sat in the back of the bus. As a 5-year-old I recognized the unfairness of these Southern social norms. I was fortunate enough to have been raised by parents that weren’t racist..a Mother from North Dakota and a Father from deep in the heart of Alabama. I witnessed my Father getting phone calls in the middle of the night from his African-American truck drivers who had some problem. My Father got in the car and went to help them, to fix the problem, because back then a white man carried more weight than a black man, a white man could fix the problem, and a black man was the “problem” in a white controlled southern environment. From my birth I had a beautiful, loving, kind, gentle black woman who nurtured and cared for me as if I was her own. Daisy was my second Mom. I saw the inconsistencies of those Southern norms… when my Mother was at work and Daisy cared for me in our home, she used the same bathroom we did. Yet when Daisy walked me to the grocery store I saw the signs designating different restrooms for white and colored. At our home, Daisy drank from the same glasses we used, sat at our table and ate lunch with me. She fiercely defended me by chasing a neighborhood friend away with a broom when he tossed a rope around my neck. She loved me and I loved her. And yet outside the walls of our home, she was treated differently, like a second class citizen. As young as I was, I sensed the wrongness of all of this. Only as an adult after reading The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson, did I come to realize all of the horrible things that blacks endured which had never crossed my mind. It never occured to me because I was white, blue-eyed, blond hair.  Because of these simple physical characteristics endowed to me by the luck of my birth, I never had to endure what blacks had to endure. And when I saw the movie The Help, I sobbed my way through the entire movie. I felt shame. Shame that I inherited just because of the whiteness of my skin. It burned me and left its mark upon my soul.

How was this inequity fixed? The Civil Rights movement of the 60’s and the phenomenal efforts of Dr. Martin Luther King and President Lyndon B. Johnson, made these changes come to fruition. With the Civil Rights Act, some of the inequities began to slowly but surely be removed. But not completely. Southern states and polecat politicians created new Jim Crow laws in attempts to suppress the black voter. Jim Crow was disguised as poll taxes, redistricting, limited voting sites, gerrymandering, changing polling locations and ID laws, all popular methods of suppressing minority voters. A simple solution to eliminate these problems…when you are born you are automatically registered to vote. A simple concept and it eliminates controversy. If you are born here then you simply get to vote.


Change doesn’t happen quickly. It can be painful and it takes patience and tenacity to make it happen. Generations of feet marching, beaten, bloodied bodies and too many senseless deaths have paved that long road to equality.

The federal government has to be the watchdog over the states because unfortunately not all states promote equality. I find it very interesting that the Conservative movement of the Republican Party spouts constitutionality and shouts individual rights, but when it comes time for common sense, they fall way short. The recent elimination of a ban on mentally ill being able to purchase guns is a prime example. Paid for and supported by the NRA, the politicians who are just looking for a paycheck, accept donations from this organization and basically are participating in a “pay for play” agreement. It matters not that it makes absolutely no sense to allow mentally ill people the right to purchase guns. Another example is their fierce obsession with pro-life issues. They rant and rave about the rights of the unborn, but when it comes to funding programs for these children after they are born…they simply vanish into the woodwork. Example… eliminating free lunch programs for children of the poor who might be receiving the only meal they will have for the entire day. Where are the Conservatives and caring people who tout individual rights when these protections are non-existent or eliminated? If Conservatives truly cared, then they would fiercely defend those children after they are born with the  same fervor they exhibited when that child was in utero.

I have never been so ashamed of my country as I am today in this political climate. Truth and veracity are being tossed aside, hope is being squashed, and constitutional rights are being trampled. First the Muslim ban was invoked. Then the undocumented were targeted…Transgenders were next on the list. Freedom of the press is being pummeled now. Who or what will be next? Keep a list and tick them off, because what you are witnessing in the United States of America today is, in Steve Bannon’s cruel and sinister words, the “deconstruction” of the United States as we have known it for 240 years. He and his minions have chosen Cabinet members precisely because they are opposed to those government branches. The goal…to bring it all down. When will you reach your moment, your “I’ve had enough this isn’t fair and I can’t live with myself if I support this annihilation of my country moment?” I long ago passed my “moment”. My heart aches. Not over losing an election but for the loss of a beautiful thing…The United States of America.

Resist! Persist!


What is Your Tipping Point?



When is it enough? When will Trump supporters say this is too much? When will they realize that their rights as citizens are being violated and slowly but surely eroded? When will they recognize that their world is changing in ways they may not like.

Will it be :

  • When the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines are built across sacred tribal Native American land?
  • When he bans immigrants from Middle East countries but conveniently exempts those nations where Trump has financial interests?
  • When the VA is banned from hiring needed personnel to fix its problems?
  • When our National Parks are ravaged for corporate profit?
  • When all media access is lost? Our internet controlled?
  • When a gag order is placed on scientists who give us information on global warning?
  • When the Arts are defunded and Big Bird is dead?
  • When the President builds his own wealth by violating the Constitution?
  • When the largest source of women’s health care is defunded?
  • When women are dying from coat hanger abortions?
  • When the cost of a basic automobile is far out of reach for the average person?
  • When the EPA is silenced?
  • When real data and statistical proof of global warming disappears?
  • When alternative facts, AKA lies, are accepted as the truth?
  • When your right to vote is suppressed?
  • When your right to protest is gone?
  • When you lose your Medicare benefits?
  • When you are told that you have a pre-existing condition and it is not covered by insurance?
  • When the cancer drug you need to save your life is not covered by your insurance or you lose your home to pay for your life saving medications?
  • When they see a video that offends them?
  • When they hear words that offend them?
  • When your religion is attacked?
  • When your parents are deported or put into internment camps?
  • When you see your parent lose Medicare benefits?
  • When clean air and clean water are no longer a priority?
  • When your tax dollars go to pay for the “wall”?
  • When Meals on Wheels is eliminated for Seniors?
  • When evidence is produced that proves are government has been infiltrated by Russian sympathizers?
  • When it affects you?

Warning Bells are Loudly Clanging. Are Trump supporters listening yet?




To the People I Love


I have been having a hard time with the political firestorm, so basically feel like it is best to get my feelings and thoughts out. It breaks my heart to hear people I love rationalize what Donald Trump stands for and normalizing or making excuses for his abusive words and actions. I also think that telling me or others to “just get over it” or “it’s time to move on” is harmful to a relationship. Just as each of us must grieve a loss in our own time frame, please recognize that all of the people who didn’t vote for Trump (Democrats, Independents and many Republicans) are grieving what we see as the death of democracy as we know it. 

I love you all soooo much and care deeply for many people in my life who made the choice to select Trump as their President. I never once thought any of you were “deplorables” and truly believe that you voted for the person you believed would be best for our nation. I know you have seen my many posts and the fact that I still cannot accept him as “My President” and probably never will. I now feel like there is a wall between us because I can’t understand supporting this man. This is not like me at all. This is the first time in my life that I have felt so negatively about the winner of our Presidential race. And my chosen candidates have lost in the past. This is the first time in my life that I have feared for America and the democracy it represents to the world. This is the first time in my life that I find myself banging against a wall that looms between me and people I love. After the election I had hopes that he would become more presidential, but as each day passes, I am more alarmed at his unpresidential behavior. I am having great difficulty understanding how people I love see him as a great leader, the answer to all of our problems. To me, he is uneducated, inarticulate, has a scattered unfocused thought process and seems to be only interested in his own self rather than stepping up to the plate to be President for over 300 million Americans. Many of us did not vote for him and I have seen no movement on his part to try to allay our fears about his inability to govern in a responsible way, no reaching out across our nation to reassure his non-supporters that it will be okay. So just as you believed he would be the best choice, I believe that he is absolutely the worst person to lead our nation.

As I watch the Republican Congress make moves to dismantle health care for over 20 million people, one of which is my granddaughter who was born with a pre-existing condition, I am appalled that they think this is the right thing to do. And now I have two pre-existing conditions as well. They have had six years to come up with a better plan and for six years have presented no viable alternative.  I think all of us agree that the ACA is not perfect, but fix it! Or replace it simultaneously with a plan that doesn’t strip the rights of 20 million Americans  to health care. Please follow this link to read about how people with employer covered insurance will also be affected by its repeal.  http://healthaffairs.org/blog/2017/01/11/get-health-insurance-through-your-employer-aca-repeal-will-affect-you-too/    

His refusal to take daily intelligence briefings while President elect, his attack of the intelligence agencies in our country, his lack of veracity makes me fear for the safety of our nation. I pray daily that he will not start a nuclear war. 

Paul Ryan has had an agenda for years to privatize Medicare and Social Security. He is quite determined to do this. Repealing ACA DOES affect Medicare benefits as well. Cancer and diabetes screenings gone. Recommended preventive services without cost sharing through employers will be gone…so mammograms, flu shots, etc. I am pleading with you and others to please investigate and study ALL of the issues.

Pence is hell bound to get rid of Planned Parenthood and believes that we can use conversion therapy to “cure” being gay. Planned Parenthood cannot by law use federal funds for abortions and abortions are only a very small part of services offered through this organization. They provide mammograms, pap smears, pre-natal care, birth control options and many other preventive health care services for millions of low-income women. I don’t want us to go back to back alley abortions with coat hangers. Real people are affected by this. I also feel strongly that no man or governing entity should have the right to make decisions about my body. I have spent many years in maternal health care and never participated in any abortion procedures because personally I am Pro-Life. But, I will fiercely defend anyone else’s right to make that choice. I have NO right to dictate to someone else what they feel they must do. Their body, their life. That makes me Pro-Choice.  I also wonder why it matters so much to other humans that everyone needs to be the same? Diversity is what has made this nation great. Isn’t it enough to just take care of your own life?

My bottom line though is that I think he is a despicable human being, a homophobic, xenophobic, racist, narcissistic lying sexual predator who wants only to increase his own wealth on the backs of hard-working American citizens. I can’t erase the image of him mocking a handicapped journalist nor can I erase hearing the words he uttered while boasting of being a sexual predator. If he truly cared about being “presidential” and wanted to alleviate the fears that he has sown throughout the past 1.5 years, then release his tax returns, put his holdings into a true blind trust. At least make an effort to show me and millions of Americans that he is worthy of the job. I also ask Trump supporters this question….If any other Republican or Democrat running for the office of the Presidency did just half of the things Donald Trump did and said, would those who so fiercely support him, have given them a pass as well on any of the above outrageous words and actions? 

Sorry, but I have to go dark. I just cannot assimilate how to resolve the emotions within me. I am desperately trying to figure out how I can dismantle the wall that I feel exists between me and the people I love whose beliefs are so far from my own. I absolutely recognize that resolving this crisis in my life is definitively my problem. I am hopeful that I will be able to shatter that wall, but not sure how long that might take.  And Trump could facilitate this process if he would begin to adhere to his campaign promises of “not touching Medicare, Medicaid or Social Security” or giving us “healthcare for all” which should be a right for every citizen, not an option based on personal wealth. Sadly though, all I am seeing so far is implementation of executive orders allowing our environment to be raped for oil profits, anti-abortion acts being reinstated, and tax cuts for the wealthy.

Above all, I am an American. I love my country. Above all, I am a patriot, not a Democrat, Republican or Independent. As a patriot, I am doing what I believe in my heart is the right thing to do….Resist any attempt to normalize unacceptable behavior, resist any attempt to ignore the Constitution, resist any attempt to stifle freedom of speech, resist racism, resist homophobia, resist misogyny and xenophobia, resist any and all things that threaten the freedoms that so many have shed blood to protect and defend.

Millions of Americans are grieving right now. I think Lady Liberty is grieving as well.


Con Artists of the Bird World

Con artists have permeated the world probably since the beginning of time. What is a con artist? How is a con artist defined in the dictionary? Con artist – a person who cheats or tricks others by persuading them to believe something that is not true. Or another definition…a person adept at lying, cajolery, or glib self-serving talk. Or another….a person adept at swindling by means of confidence games, a swindler. All of these definitions from dictionary.com describe people who use others for their own gain. But humans don’t have a lock on con artistry. In the bird world, con artists exist as well.

One of those bird con artists is the Shrike Tanager. A group of shrikes is known as a “watch” or “abattoir”. One bird in the “watch” of shrikes is supposed to be a “watchman” of sorts for the entire collective “watch”. So they trust their safety to one in the “watch”. If a predator approaches, the watchbird is supposed to sound the alarm so all the other shrikes can flee to safety. But sometimes the “watch” bird for the group of shrikes falsely sounds the alarm with the predictable result of a general exodus of the other shrikes leaving behind a plethora of food for the “watch” shrike to steal.white-throated-shrike-tanager-10

Our President Elect is supposed to be the watchman for all of America. All of America includes people of different color, different religions, different walks of life. All share one large common denominator…we are Americans. We live here, work here, play here and enjoy all the freedoms afforded to us by our Constitution. A Constitution that has been challenged and defended for hundreds of years by the willingness of journalists, protest marchers and military personnel who fought and many times succumbed, making the ultimate sacrifice of giving their lives, so the American democracy, our privileged way of life so heavily endowed with freedoms, can endure.

Freedom isn’t free. It must be paid for. The price all too often requires a sacrifice….writing letters, protests, calling legislators, defending against social injustice and sometimes loss of life. It is hard work, this job of defending freedom, defending our Constitution, defending democracy. It is challenging, time-consuming and exhausting. Just like a chronic or acute disease, it must be vigorously fought on a daily basis to win the battle. Our democracy has stood the test of time because of the willingness of citizens to make sacrifices to “preserve, honor and defend” not only from exogenous aggressors but also endogenous ones.

To sound false alarms about different ethnic groups or religious groups, to perpetuate lies and untruths, to demean the freedom of the press or protesters right to protest, is to undermine our Constitution and America’s promise for millions of Americans. Just like the shrike who distracts and falsely sounds the alarm, our President-elect tosses falsehoods to distract Americans from perhaps his true purpose…to undermine our democracy and establish an autocracy. He appears to want all for himself but at the expense of others and like the “watcher” shrike he will grow fat on the lives of hardworking Americans who just want to enjoy all of America’s promise, the American dream.

Another bird that is a con artist is the cuckoo. Cold hearted and ruthless, they frequently usurp the nests of other birds, lay their own eggs and then leave their progeny behind to be raised by the surrogates who worked hard and built the nest stick, by twig, by leaf. They are the “users” of the bird world.cuckoo-bird-sitting-on-wood

Our President elect has a history of being a user like the cuckoo. He borrows money to build, hires workers to do the job and then abandons them without compensation for their work. All the while he is moving forward on projects to further his self-worth and aggrandisement. Like the cuckoo, he is a swindler, refusing to pay for goods received, spending his life short-changing the other hardworking Americans and leaving in his wake a mess for others to clean up.

Con artists are the “takers” in our world. In the bird world, little damage is done by these tricksters. But in our America, in our world on this planet called Earth, the cost might be catastrophic. Only time will tell if our cuckoo bird manages to destroy us or will rise up from the ashes of his incompetent, racist, misogynist, xenophobic narcissistic self like the mythical Phoenix and actually step up to the plate and begin to think and act as the office of the President of the United States demands.