A Little Bit Rant-y

I’m in rather a rant-y mood this evening, so tell you what … I’ll share my angst with you, just in case your life was feeling a bit too peaceful at the moment.  No need to thank me.


Punish the truth-seekers

Jim Banks is a representative in the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.  Jim Banks is apparently not a very conscionable person, apparently has forgotten that Oath of Office he last took on January 3rd of this year.  He has served in the House since 2017, though for the life of me I cannot imagine why.

That’s congressman Banks above … looks like a real sharp one, yes?

Naturally Mr. Banks was one of many Republicans to contest the results of the 2020 election, even knowing that President Biden had won fairly and honestly, but it seems to be some sort of rite of initiation for those in the GOP to perpetuate the Big Lie and even put their integrity on the line to do so.  But it’s his latest transgression that has Filosofa growling.  Mr. Banks is urging his party to punish every lawmaker investigating the attempted coup at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th.  Punish them?  For doing their jobs?  For trying to find out how and why and by whom our democratic foundations were damn near overthrown???  What the hell planet spawned this dude?

“When we win back the majority next year, we have a duty as Republicans to hold every member of this committee accountable for this abuse of power, for stepping over the line, by preventing them from being in positions of authority. Take them off any committee, get them as far away from positions of power as you can because they’ve shown us that by threatening to do this that they abuse their power, wherever they are.”

I voted in November.  I voted for President Biden.  Many of you reading this voted for him also.  And this jackass is saying that our votes, our voices, our only representation in the government we fund should have been erased and that nobody should even try to figure out how, why, and by whom?  Indianans … you all really need to recall this clown before somebody does it for you!

Oh, and if you want the icing on the cake … the ignominious Tucker Carlson’s son works for Mr. Banks! Birds of a feather …


I have a right to kill my people!

Good ol’ Florida governor Ron DeSantis is back in the news.  On Friday, Florida Judge John Cooper ruled on a lawsuit brought by parents who say DeSantis overstepped his authority when his administration said school districts couldn’t order students to wear masks. DeSantis had warned that “there will be consequences” for districts that defied the ban.

Score one for sanity.  But wait … DeSantis is already threatening (“promising”) to appeal immediately, for he seems to believe that he is God, not the governor, and that as such, he has a right to condemn a large swath of his state to death.

Meanwhile, it looks as if Floridians are finally starting to see the light.  A Quinnipiac University poll released this month had DeSantis’ approval rating dipping below 50 percent, with 47 percent approving of his job performance, and 45 percent disapproving. Those numbers dropped to 44-51 when asked about his handling of public schools. The Quinnipiac poll follows other public polling that shows a similar erosion to DeSantis’ approval rating. A St. Pete Polls survey earlier this month showed 43 percent approved of the job he was doing while 48 percent did not.  And this is the man who was considering a run for president in 2024?  🤣 🤣 🤣

And then in other Florida news, with hospitals nearly full to capacity and 17,000 hospitalized with Covid, turns out the morgues are also filling up.

“The Central Florida Division of AdventHealth has reached capacity of our hospital morgues due to an influx of COVID-19 patients. We have begun utilizing rented, refrigerated coolers at 10 of our campuses throughout Orange, Osceola, Polk, Seminole, & Volusia counties. These coolers are quickly becoming filled also.”

All because one man has a god-complex and thinks that “he alone can fix this”.  Wonder where he got that ego?

Guns And COVID — Both Murder Weapons

If I owned a retail establishment (a ‘store’, for any Republicans who might be reading), I would be well within my rights to impose and enforce a ban on guns in my business.  I would have a sign on all entrances stating my ‘no gun’ policy and anyone caught bringing a gun into my place would be given a lifetime ban.  No exceptions.  Why?  Because guns kill, because guns are dangerous even in the most well-trained hands.  Because I don’t want to have to hire a crew to clean the blood stains off of my walls.

Murder, by the way, is against the law here in the U.S.  So, if you brought a gun into my establishment, lost your temper with, say somebody who accidentally jostled you, and you shot them … you would go to prison.

Now, the gun rights’ activists will tell me that I’m infringing on their 2nd Amendment rights, but frankly I don’t give a damn and that isn’t how I see it.

So now we have another lethal weapon in the public arsenal, this one less obvious at a glance than a bulky gun:  COVID.  Covid is a lethal killer … to date, 4.5 million people worldwide have died of this disease since its inception and there is no sign that it is slowing down in too many places, most notably parts of the U.S.  So, again, I would be well within my rights to refuse entry to my place of business to anyone not vaccinated and not wearing a mask – the only two tools in our toolbox to fight this killer.

If you wish to visit my store, you will show valid proof of vaccination AND you will wear a mask.  Frankly, I don’t give a rat’s ass what Governor DeSantis or Governor Abbott have to say about it … I will ban those who cannot follow the rules of public safety.

Today, the vaccine has been widely available and free for a number of months, and this week received full FDA approval, so there is NO remaining excuse for anybody to continue to shun the vaccine.  But if you do, be advised that you, too, will be shunned by good people of conscience.

It seems to me that, Covid being every bit as lethal, though not as obvious, as a gun, then it should be restricted in the same way … that … oh wait, we don’t restrict guns, either do we?  But seriously, folks … the person who refuses to be vaccinated, who refuses to wear a mask in public, is every bit as much a murderer in my book as the person who pulls a gun in a crowded movie theater.  Consider the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally earlier this month.  According to NBC News …

Two weeks after the annual motorcycle rally in Sturgis, South Dakota, reported Covid infections in the state have risen nearly sixfold.

South Dakota counted 3,819 new cases in the past two weeks, including seven deaths, up from 644 cases in the 14 days preceding it. That makes it the state with the largest percent increase in Covid cases in the past two weeks.

Packed in like sardines and in all the pictures I’ve seen, I did not see a single masked face.

Y’know, my friends, if a person wants to commit suicide, that is his or her business and contrary to what I thought, it is not against the law.  But it does seem that there are more reliable and less traumatic ways to do it than to catch Covid intentionally.  But when we start talking about other people’s lives, then … WHOA!  Put the brakes on, stop sipping that Jack Daniels, stop being stubborn just for the sake of showing the world what an asshole you are, and think for a minute.  Murder, as it happens, IS illegal.  If you intentionally place your unvaccinated, unmasked self into a group of people, you are potentially committing murder.  You may be murdering a two-year-old child or an elderly woman like myself.  You may be murdering a schoolteacher or a nurse.  It’s a game of Russian roulette and I’M TIRED OF IT!

Tell me again, Scott Lawlor, how your right to shun the vaccine overrides my right to life!  Tell us all, you stupid bitches holding up signs reading “My body, my choice”, what you would do if your own child caught Covid and died as a result of your “choice”.

It seems to me that there should be a nation-wide mandate for both the vaccine and masks.  Anybody caught not obeying … there is plenty of jail space.  We could whip Covid in this country in a matter of weeks if EVERYONE did their part … a really simple part, actually.  But no, there are 30% – 40% of the people in this nation who aren’t particularly smart, aren’t at all compassionate, but rather are greedy, selfish bastards.  And governors who would rather see a reduction in the population of their state than make an unpopular decision.  Wow, real tough guys, eh?

Have a safe and happy weekend, my friends, and stay away from covidiots.

Covidiots and Maskholes

Our friend Jeff over at On the Fence Voters is angry, and I don’t blame him … I share his angst and anger on this issue. COVID in the U.S. could be but a distant nightmare today, but instead, thanks to politicians, the Republicans, the former guy, and willful ignorance, we are once again seeing surging cases and a rising death toll. We are still … those of us with any sense … confined mainly to our homes. It didn’t have to be this way … Thanks, Jeff, for sharing your thoughts on this, which are the same as my own.

On The Fence Voters

Please know that the derogatory title to this post only refers to those who refuse to do the right thing and help their fellow human beings by getting a shot and wearing a mask when necessary. By no means do I mean to offend anyone. But if I do? I couldn’t care less.

What’s it going to take, folks? How many more deaths? How much suffering must the American people endure? It appears that for a particular segment of society, there is no inflection point. Their minds are already made up, so the carrots our governmental leaders have extended to them are no longer worth continuing. It’s time to use the most oversized sticks we can find to whack them over their heads.

Enough.

I want to submit to you some statistics from the Del Norte County Public Health website that will give you a glimpse of what’s going on…

View original post 1,332 more words

The Games People Play

I titled this post as I did for a very good reason … our lawmakers at every level are playing games … with our lives.  They are playing with our right to vote, with the bridges that just waiting for a heavier-than-average rush hour to collapse and kill thousands, they are playing with the rights of Blacks, Hispanics and those of Asian descent to … well, to live, actually.  And they are playing with numbers … how they can profit the most from the 98% of us who live from paycheck to paycheck.  Oh yes, folks, our lawmakers are great games players, just not very good representatives of We the People.


For the People …

Over the past 2 weeks, I have spent hours pouring over the For the People Act, the legislation that is currently collecting dust in the United States Senate.  This is legislation that, in addition to much else, would guarantee every eligible person age 18 or over the right to vote.  But the Senate seems to think … wait, let me amend that before I go any further … the Republicans and two Democratic members of the Senate … seem to think that We the People should not have a voice in the government we support financially!  The more I study this bill, the more I am growling, for there is literally NOTHING in it that should give rise for concern.  If, that is, we had legislators who put country above party, who truly cared about the future of this nation, who treasured integrity and honesty above profit and power.  Sadly, we don’t.

I will have a post, more likely 2-3 posts, summarizing this bill, what it would mean to you and I, and the Republicans’ objections to it within the next week or so, but for now, suffice it to say that as long as our elected officials care more about themselves than about us, as long as they are tethered to the former guy’s wagon, and as long as there are enough uneducated people in this nation who will fall for their lies, this bill is likely to be burned at the stake before it gets a chance to see the light of day.  It’s a damn shame that we will almost certainly end up trashing the democratic principles on which this nation was founded so that the likes of Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy can stay in power and keep the money rolling in … to their bank accounts.


Now about that infrastructure bill …

There has been much hassle over the infrastructure bill while bridges and roadways further erode, while people are still drinking water that is proven unsafe, but hey … let’s thank those bloody Republicans for keeping our tax dollars safe, shall we?  Oh yeah … rather than spend them on our safety, they can spend them to build and buy more military hardware, better guns, even more nukes that will someday in the not-so-distant future destroy us all!

Today, the CBO (Congressional Budget Office) announced that the infrastructure bill, often touted as a bipartisan bill, though I question this, would add in excess of $250 billion to the already bloated federal deficit over the next decade.  Well duh … bridges, roadways, water & sewer systems … they cost money!  They also save human lives, but hey … no biggie, right?

Now, since the CBO is so happily crunching numbers … I have another request for them.  How about calculating the amount of additional revenue this nation would garner if every single person with a net worth over $1 million was forced to pay a fair share in taxes as the rest of us have been doing for all our lives?  Yeah … I want to know how much of that money required for infrastructure could be covered if the likes of Jeff Bezos, Exxon Mobile, Smith & Wesson, and every other corporation or individual worth millions paid the same rate in taxes as the rest of us do.  I’m betting these assholes could more than cover the infrastructure, upgrade our schools, and cover Medicare for All if they just opened their wallets and paid … the same progressive income tax that the rest of us pay!  How ‘bout it CBO … you game for calculating this one?

During my career years, ages 13-57, I never once begrudged Uncle Sam the amount I spent on federal income taxes.  I am a CPA and for years have prepared clients’ tax returns, but I refuse to lie or cheat on their behalf.  But I admit that I see red when I see that certain corporations paid zero income taxes, or that a multi-millionaire, nay billionaire, paid somewhere around 1% – 2% while the average John Doe is paying 12% – 25%.  C’mon, Congress, close the damn loopholes!  Tax the wealthy … they can afford it … I can’t!


On April 19th, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln spoke these words in his infamous Gettysburg Address …

“ … that these dead shall not have died in vain– that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

That government of, by, and for the people is perishing from the earth.  It has had a dagger thrust into its heart and is just now gasping its last breaths.  Are you content to let it die?  Will we sit back and watch as those with money take power unto themselves and subjugate the rest of us?  Sigh.  And on that note, I bid you a good night.

Lolla-Pa-Whazzit???

Take a look at the above picture.  How many people do you see wearing a mask?  Look how close the people are.  Social distancing?  HAH!  I think not!  This was the scene at the 4-day music festival in Chicago called Lollapalooza held this past weekend.  Approximately 100,000 people attended each of the four days.  To attend, people had to either provide a Covid-19 vaccine card or proof of a negative Covid-19 test from the previous 72 hours.  Big f*cking deal.  This event should not have even been held, but to allow nearly a half-million people during the event to mix and mingle sans masks is the height of stupidity.

My daughter is a member of the Cincinnati Caledonian Pipes and Drums band, and as such they typically play at 15-20 events in the eastern half of the U.S. and Canada each year, including a Winter Storm festival in St. Louis, Missouri, in January.  All but one of their events this year was cancelled, and the Winter Storm festival for next January has already been cancelled due to the pandemic.  Yes, the organizers and sponsors of these events are losing money, but they value human life over profit.

Infectious disease expert Dr. Tina Tan said: “When you have 100,000 or more people who are in a fairly enclosed space and there’s no social distancing, the vast majority are not wearing masks, you are going to get some transmission of Covid-19 Delta variant.”

It has already been proven that even if you are fully vaccinated, you can transmit the virus.  Even if you are fully vaccinated, you can catch the virus and become ill.  Doesn’t it just make sense to stay home???  Oh … there’s that word again … ‘sense’ … a lot of people seem to have none.

Chicago is already averaging more than 200 new cases per day, a significant increase from a few months ago. It could be two to three weeks before the effect of Lollapalooza on the city’s case rate is known, and there is also concern about people who visited the city for the festival taking the virus back home with them.  Picture the parents who attended, leaving their children behind with Grandma and Grandpa …  “Oh look, kids, I brought you souvenirs from the festival and one other thing … a killer virus!”

A reporter for the Chicago Sun-Times asked the question, “Why was Lollapalooza allowed to go forward?”  Easy answer … $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

The average cost of a ticket was $545, and that did not include food, drinks, souvenirs, parking, etc.  Multiply that times 100,000 people.  Let me save you the trouble … over $54 million.  Hell no, they weren’t going to give that up, no matter how many deaths may come as a result.

I have long lamented that the human species seems determined to bring about its own extinction and this event is further proof to support my premise.  Climate change, chemicals in our food, plastic in our oceans, nuclear weapons, and so much more … all man-made disasters that, if we don’t wake up and work toward fixing the problem, will render this earth uninhabitable not only by humans, but by thousands of species.  And now … the utter greed and stupidity of people as a response to the pandemic that has already killed more than 4 million people worldwide.

Way to go, humans.

Your Rights Or Mine?

When the pandemic hit the shores of the U.S., when non-essential businesses were ordered to close and mask mandates became widespread around the nation, I rebelled a bit against the restrictions. However at the time, I had no idea of the scope of this pandemic, no idea that some 16 months later we would still be in dire circumstances.  As I saw the new cases skyrocketing, saw the death toll rise to more than a thousand people a day, I made a conscious decision to stay out of public venues to the largest extent possible, and to dutifully wear a mask when I couldn’t avoid being in a public place.  I may be stubborn, but I’m not stupid!  Other folk, however, might just qualify as being a special kind of stupid and it annoys the hell out of me that they have so little regard for anyone, even their own children!


The Catholics vs the lives of children

I thought I had heard every excuse in the book for not wearing a mask.  They are all bullshit, for if I can wear a mask when out in public, I with severe breathing problems, then almost anybody can.  But those who choose not to don’t even claim to have health issues, they simply don’t want to and they view civil rights as basically being … whatever they want to do.  They are disgusting and crude, but I’ve gotten used to it and usually just tune them out or flip them a middle finger.  But it turns out that no, I hadn’t heard the worst of it.

Resurrection School, a Catholic school in Lansing, Michigan, and two parents are suing the State of Michigan for a mask mandate that was in effect for schools last year when they first filed the lawsuit.  The mask mandate, of course, was put in place in order to keep children, their parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends safe from the coronavirus.  But the Catholic school and parents argue that Catholic doctrine holds that every person is made in God’s image …

“Unfortunately, a mask shields our humanity. And because God created us in His image, we are masking that image.”

OH For Pete’s Sake!!!

The school’s lawsuit argued that in addition to physically blocking God’s image, face coverings make people anti-social and interfere with relationships.  In addition, the school argued, wearing masks “conveys the message that the wearer has surrendered his or her freedom to the government.”

OH FFS!!!

In December, Judge Paul Maloney of the Western District of Michigan denied the school’s motion for a preliminary injunction that would have banned enforcement of the state’s mask ordinance for kindergarten through fifth-grade students at religious schools. Resurrection School notified the court of its intention to appeal two days later, court records show.  That appeal was heard last week, but as of yet no verdict has been handed down.  Surely no court in their right mind would put a church’s vanity over the lives of the children!  Stay tuned …


Re-defining ‘Rights’

Humans.  Bah humbug!  Give ‘em an inch and they’ll take a mile.  Tell them they have the right to free speech and they will tell lie after lie after lie under the protective dome of the 1st Amendment.  Tell them they have the right to ‘bear arms’ so long as it is as a part of a well-organized militia, not some ragtag group of uneducated bozos, and they will demand that they be allowed to carry assault rifles, grenade launchers and any weapon known to mankind.  Tell them they have a right to free choice, and they will thumb their nose at you, will demand the right to kill their own children in the name of ‘freedom from being forced to be vaccinated or wear a mask’.

I treasure my constitutional rights, but I am not so stupid or unconscionable to try to assume they give me the right to do whatever the Sam Hell I want to, no matter who it puts in the path of danger.  See … I have this thing in my head called a brain, and some days it even kicks into gear and produces coherent thought processes!  Sadly, my late-ex-husband hit the nail on the head when he said that some people, when they were giving out brains, thought they said, ‘trains’ and answered, “No thank you”.

This seems to be the case with those who seem to believe they are immune to the ravages of the COVID pandemic.  In France, President Emmanuel Macron has put into place a mandate that people must show a “health pass”, similar to a vaccine passport being discussed here in the U.S.  The health pass would be required to show proof of vaccination against the coronavirus when entering cinemas, theaters, museums, restaurants, long train trips, bars and planes.  The French people are whining that the President is taking on powers with dictatorial overtones that crush basic freedoms.  Bullshit!  Connerie!

Here in the U.S., people are whining over everything everywhere.  They don’t want to have to be vaccinated, don’t want to have to show proof of being vaccinated, don’t want to wear a mask … wah wah wah.  Big bunch ‘o babies!  EVEN people in the healthcare industry!  Wouldn’t you think they would know better???  How the hell are they going to convince the populace to be vaccinated when they themselves are refusing???

Some areas are moving into a region of sanity.  The Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) and the State of California (CA) have made the vaccine mandatory for healthcare workers in their areas.  It only makes sense!  Do you really want to visit the doctor, knowing that his nurse and maybe even himself are walking covid breeders?

And at a time you might expect churches to take the high road, for the most part they have lowered the bar.  Churches have argued against forced closing back when all but the most essential services were shuttered.  And now, some are arguing against protecting their congregation by the requirement to limit attendance and wear masks.  One pastor, Greg Locke, says that mask-wearing is forbidden in his church and anyone entering wearing a mask will be ‘thrown out’.  He claims to be standing up for people’s ‘rights’.  Wait a minute … doesn’t forbidding the wearing of masks intrude on the rights of those who wish to protect themselves by wearing a mask?  Think on that one a minute!

Rights, folks.  Many people aren’t understanding them.  With rights come the responsibility of ensuring you use those rights wisely.  Your rights end at the point they step on mine or somebody else’s.  Rights.  They are enumerated in the U.S. Constitution … I would suggest it be on the mandatory reading list for every single person over the age of 12 in the U.S.  Read it, think about it, then tell me that you have a right to come into a restaurant, unvaccinated and sans mask with the pandemic once again skyrocketing in certain areas.


And then there is Basilico’s Pasta e Vino restaurant in Huntington Beach, California …

When restaurants across California halted indoor dining as the pandemic took hold in March 2020, Basilico’s Pasta e Vino in Huntington Beach continued to welcome patrons.

When officials issued an order for establishments to mandate face coverings to stem the spread of the virus, the Orange County eatery declared itself a mask-free zone and required that diners remove them before entering.

This week, the Italian restaurant issued another decree: Proof of being unvaccinated is required for entry.

We have seen a lot of ignorance, a lot of blatant stupidity, a lot of cruelty since the start of the pandemic, but … this one takes the cake.  I would love to see this restaurant shut down by the Department of Public Health and told never to re-open their doors again.


Voting Is A RIGHT, Not A Privilege!!!

In 1965, Congress passed, and President Lyndon Johnson signed into law the Voting Rights Act of 1965.  Please note and remember that this bill was NOT titled the Voting Privilege Act of 1965, but the Voting RIGHTS Act … rights, not privileges.

Several constitutional amendments, the 15th, the 19th, and the 26th, require that voting rights of U.S. citizens cannot be abridged on account of race, color, previous condition of servitude, sex, or age (18 and older).  Are we all in agreement here that every person over the age of 18 has the right to vote?

However, according to a recent PEW Research study, white people don’t think that voting is a right, but rather a privilege that one must earn!  It’s no damn wonder, then, that 42 states are in the process of drafting or passing legislation that would make it far more difficult for people of colour, for the elderly, for college students, and for working women to cast a vote.

More than once I have ranted about those who don’t vote, or who vote for an inviable third-party candidate.  In my view it is irresponsible — we all have a DUTY to vote, even if we aren’t enamoured of any of the candidates.  I have also proposed that we have mandatory voting.  I have proposed switching election dates to Sunday so that all will have time and access to the vote.  I have also proposed that every state should go to an all-postal voting system in order to make voting as painless as possible for everyone. So, you can imagine that I am LIVID to find out that white people think voting is a privilege to be earned.

Why???  We all have to live under the laws that are determined by the president and members of Congress, so WHY THE HELL shouldn’t we ALL have a voice in choosing those people???  Why should some be forced to follow laws made by people that they didn’t even have a chance to vote for or against?  I have long ranted against restrictions in some states that disenfranchise former prisoners who are on parole.  They paid their dues, served their time … now they are out of prison, most are gainfully employed and paying taxes … WHY THE HELL shouldn’t they be allowed to vote???

And this is a partisan issue.  Among Democrats, only 21% see the right to vote as a ‘privilege’, while among Republicans, 67% believe that the ‘privilege’ of voting must be earned.

Quite frankly, I cannot imagine anything short of actually being in prison during election day that should prevent a person from voting.  Qualified?  Well, if they are a citizen, then in my mind they are qualified.  If John Doe is a Black citizen, an employed taxpayer, then why do the tighty whiteys want to take away his right … yes, RIGHT … to vote?  Do they think they are better than he is?  Do they think their opinion has more value than his?  Or … do they just figure he isn’t as smart or as ‘entitled’ as they are? Or … are they afraid?  Afraid that if enough Black people have a say in who makes the laws that govern us all, they might lose their privileged status?  Are they afraid that someday our Congress won’t be 90% white, but will instead be 40% white?  What, exactly, are you afraid of, Karen?

Black Americans are more likely than those in other racial and ethnic groups to see voting as a fundamental right, while White Americans are the least likely to say this. About three-quarters of Black Americans (77%) say voting is a right for every U.S. citizen and should not be restricted, as do 63% of Hispanic Americans and 66% of Asian Americans. White Americans are about evenly divided: 51% say voting is a right, while 48% say it is a privilege.

That 48% … they make me ashamed to be Caucasian … make me wish my olive-toned skin were much darker, for I am NOT white … not at heart … not if this is the way white people think!  Stick your Ango-Saxon heritage where the sun doesn’t shine … I am not as one with you!

Never before in my 70 years here on earth, as a citizen of the United States, have I been so ashamed of this country and its people.  Were it just me, I would leave this country tomorrow, by whatever means I could, including death, and never have a regret – that is how much I despise what is happening in this country.  But I feel an obligation, a responsibility, in part to my daughter and granddaughter, and in part to the people of this nation, to fight the good fight, to fight against the white supremacist forces of evil.

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Was there ever a day when my head wasn’t about to explode from all the injustice and lunacy that we live with on a continual basis?  Was there ever a day when people just treated others right, when our government wasn’t being ripped apart by radicals?  Sigh.  I do remember a day when things were better than today in many ways, but let’s face it … there has never been a time that people were completely kind and compassionate toward all, never been a time when there weren’t arguments within the government – and among people – about how things ought to be done.  So, I suppose it’s what keeps me going, gives me the will to fight injustice and ignorance yet another day.


Selling children …

The headline that made my jaw drop read:

New York becomes sixth state in U.S. to ban child marriages

You mean to tell me that 44 states in this union still allow and/or support child marriages???

Last month, Rhode Island’s Democratic governor signed legislation barring minors from being married. Minnesota, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware have enacted similar laws, as have the U.S. Virgin Islands and American Samoa.  It stands out like a sore thumb that not a single one of these states are south of the Mason-Dixon line.

The legality of child marriages varies widely across the other 44 states. In Wyoming, the minimum age of consent for marriage is 16, but a child of any age can be married with parental and judicial consent. In Virginia, the minimum age is 18 — but there is an exception for minors who have been legally emancipated.

Nearly 5,000 children were married in New York between 2000 and 2018, according to a study published in April by Unchained at Last, a nonprofit that advocates against child marriage in the United States.

Nationally over that period, nearly 300,000 children were legally married, the study found. Of that figure, 86 percent were girls, and most were married to adult men.  I’m sorry, but this isn’t marriage, this is child abuse, it is sex trafficking, it is … it is just WRONG!  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.


Overstepping their bounds — the House Freedom Caucus

The House “Freedom Caucus” is a group of Republican representatives who claim to be representing We the People, but in truth they are a bigoted, homophobic lot.  It was formed in 2015 by members of the ‘Tea Party’ movement and its members are those conservatives who take conservativism so far to the right that it strains the definition of democratic principles.  The utterly despicable Jim Jordan is one of the founding members, which tells you just about all you need to know about the group.  The group was largely to blame for the resignation from Congress of then-House Speaker John Boehner in October 2015, a fellow Republican, though you’d never know it from the treatment he received from the radical right in his own party.

Today, the House Freedom Caucus is urging Kevin McCarthy to ‘do something’ to remove Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House.  Mind you, the Speaker of the House is selected by the majority party, which as of today happens to be the Democratic, not the Republican Party, and thus it is not the Republican’s place nor their responsibility to determine the leadership role.  But, when has the Republican Party in the past ten years ever played by the rules?

In a letter Friday, the far-right group asked McCarthy to file and bring up a privileged motion by July 31 “to vacate the chair and end Nancy Pelosi’s authoritarian reign as Speaker of the House.”

“Speaker Pelosi’s tenure is destroying the House of Representatives and our ability to faithfully represent the people we are here to serve. Republicans, under your leadership, must show the American people that we will act to protect our ability to represent their interests.”

Bullshit!  They are annoyed that Pelosi rejected Jim Jordan and Jim Banks for seats on the select committee to investigate the January 6th insurrection, plain and simple.  McCarthy knew damn well that those two buffoons wouldn’t pass muster … he likely selected them for that very reason, setting the stage for his little temper tantrum saying he wouldn’t put any Republicans on the committee if he couldn’t have the two Jims on the committee for the purpose of turning it into a circus act.

It is a near certainty that their request will fail, but what it serves to do is further divide not only the House of Representatives, but the nation.  Remember Abraham Lincoln’s speech in 1858 where he spoke the now famous words … “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”  It’s a fact, and when I hear Republicans utter such inanities as “our ability to faithfully represent the people we are here to serve,” I want to punch somebody or something.  The current representatives in the Republican Party, with very few exceptions, don’t give a damn about the people they are supposed to represent!

Cut the bullshit, Republicans!  We’re not stupid and we can see right through you, especially since you are unburdened by such things as a heart, a conscience, and a functional brain!  You’re as transparent as a glass bottle.  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

What A Tragic Waste!!!

I’ve made no secret of my feelings about millionaires and billionaires who hoard their wealth rather than using it to help people in need.  I’ve also made no secret of my feelings about space travel in this, the 21st century, but in case you missed it, I think it is a complete and total waste of resources.  Combine the two, and you have a very pissed off Filosofa!  Every night, thousands of children around the world go to bed hungry.  Every day, people are dying of diseases that could have been prevented, if only they had access to affordable healthcare.  People are living in their cars, under overpasses on highways.  Some people are working 2-3 jobs just to ensure their children have enough to eat.  And this nation spends millions, billions to play Buzz Lightyear.  NASA’s budget for 2021 is $23.3 billion!  Imagine how many people could eat for a month for that amount of money.

I am equally galled, perhaps even more so, by private citizens playing Star Wars with their billions, rather than using their good fortune to help those less fortunate.  And yes, folks, it is simply good fortune.  No, hard work did not earn those billionaires their billions … most of them were born with silver spoons in their mouths, played their cards right and invested wisely, and now they … literally … own the damn world!  And even if they had slaved in the fields from sunup to sundown to earn their wealth, it is unconscionable to throw it away on ego trips when people ‘round the globe are starving.

I am referring, of course specifically to three people — Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, Richard Branson, an uber-wealthy businessman, and Elon Musk, founder of Tesla … three men whose combined wealth could raise the entire planet out of poverty and who have made their wealth from the blood, sweat and tears of the average Joe!  But rather than use their wealth for such things as helping improve the environment, helping people out of poverty, helping provide medical care in this era of the pandemic, they prefer to build toys and play with them.  What is accomplished by their trip to space?  Not. One. Damned. Thing.

Turns out, I am not alone in my disgust, as several others have similar complaints.

I also saw at least one comment claiming that these men were doing ‘great’ things and opening new frontiers for the human race.  Excuse me, folks, but humans will never life on other planets or in outer space.  Oh sure, they may waste billions more dollars developing controlled-environments in small spaces, but that’s not living.  No other planet besides Earth has the resources … little things like breathable air, potable water, arable soil … to support life as we know it, so all the space exploration is NOT going to provide us a second option when we complete the destruction of Planet Earth!  It is a waste of time, energy, and money … resources that could be used to end hunger, eradicate most diseases, and help repair the damage we have so selfishly done to our environment.  Damn Richard Branson, Jeff Bezos, and Elon Musk.  These are NOT good men, you will never see them on one of my ‘good people’ posts!

The United States: A SECULAR Nation! Let’s Keep It So

The United States of America is, by definition, a democratic republic.  It is also, by definition, a secular nation.  A secular nation, not one ruled by religious dogma, but by laws that are just and that benefit all citizens.  This nation is not a theocracy!  Please allow me to define these terms for you:

  • Secular – not subject to or bound by religious rule.
  • Democratic Republic – A democratic republic is a form of government operating on principles adopted from a republic and a democracy.
    • Republic – A state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives.
    • Democracy – A system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives.
  • Theocracy – a form of government in which a deity of some type is recognized as the supreme ruling authority, giving divine guidance to human intermediaries that manage the day-to-day affairs of the government.

For the past several years, certain religions, particularly evangelical Christians, have been attempting to change the structure of this nation in such a way that would force the 330 million inhabitants of the U.S. to live by the narrowly defined rules of a single sect.  Now if, say, the evangelicals constituted a vast majority of the people in this nation – at least 98% — then this might be almost acceptable.  But they do not.  They are a minority.  Evangelicals comprise approximately 25.4% of the people in this nation.  By any standard, any way you choose to cut the pie, 25.4% is NOT a majority!  In addition, nearly as many, some 22.9% ascribe to no religion at all.

I try extremely hard to never criticize a person’s religion or religious beliefs, even though I do not share them.  I believe that we each have a right to believe as we wish, as we see fit, and that it is only right to respect others’ beliefs.  None of us know what is or isn’t, what may or may not be our future. That doesn’t mean that I give anybody the right to attempt to convert me or to shove their beliefs down my throat, and in return, I don’t ask them to listen to me expound on why I don’t believe as they do.  Rather a truce … believe as you will, just don’t expect me to believe as you do.  But today, I am seeing a threat to our secularity, a threat to the very principles on which this nation was founded.

What, you may ask, has lit my fuse?  A ‘man’ named Landon Schott, a ‘pastor’ at a church, ‘Mercy Culture Church’ in Fort Worth, Texas.  This church has become a beacon, as it were, for the new Republican Party, the one that is under some spell by the former guy and hopes to demolish the concept of ‘separation of church and state’.  This ‘man’ had the unmitigated gall, on the day after the attack on Congress and the Capitol in January, to stand in front of the Capitol and say, “Father, we declare America is yours.”  WHO THE HELL gave him the keys to the kingdom, the right to hand over our lives???

But it isn’t only Mr. Schott … he is only one of many who happened to cross my radar at the exact wrong moment.  There is an entire network of evangelical churches in this nation, with followings in the hundreds of thousands, who are on a mission not just to transform individual lives but also to turn civilization itself into their version of “God’s Kingdom”: one with two genders, no abortion, a free-market economy, bible-based education, church-based social programs and laws such as the ones curtailing LGBTQ rights now moving through statehouses around the country.

The U.S. Constitution guarantees religious freedom.  What that means is it guarantees that you can belong to any church you wish, or no church at all.  It means you can believe in any deity you choose to believe in, read any religious tomes you wish, and the United States government will not interfere – unless, of course, you engage in human sacrifices or some other illegal ritual.  What it does not mean is that you can impose your will on others. Period. In this nation there are people of many different religions:  Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Catholicism, Hinduism, Jain, and others.  There are also those of us who do not believe in a deity at all but believe that people control their own destiny.  How, then, can one single religion with very narrow views that would exclude some 75% of us, hope to control the laws of the land?

The simple answer is that they cannot and that the U.S. Constitution prohibits a theocratic government, so that’s that, right?  But is it?  Look at the Supreme Court, the branch of government that is the last best hope for interpreting and applying Constitutional Law.  Look at the Masterpiece Cakeshop decision, a blow to LGBTQ rights.  Most people expect the Supreme Court to overturn the previous Roe v Wade decision that was a boost to women’s rights.  How many states have either passed laws or have pending legislation to rob women of the right to make their own decisions regarding their health, their body?

My point is that this nation was founded on principles you will find if you read the Constitution – it’s only just over 8,000 words and easily readable in a couple of hours.  Nowhere in the U.S. Constitution will you find that religion, certainly not a single specific religion, should be the guiding principle for the laws of the land.

Y’know … it’s funny that a few years back the conservatives in this country were all up in arms saying that the Muslims who had migrated to the U.S. were trying to impose Sharia Law on the citizens of the U.S.  Now, not a single one of those people understood what the term even meant, and they had no basis in fact for their claims, but … since when did that ever stop people from making fools of themselves?  But now, they are suggesting essentially the same thing … that we impose ‘Christian Law’ upon the citizens of this nation.  We are NOT all Christians and we don’t all believe the same.  I repeat what I said in the beginning … believe and worship as you will, but this is a SECULAR nation, NOT a Christian nation!!!

If I have offended any with this post, I apologize, for it was not my intention to do so.  I respect your right to believe as you wish, and ask only that you also respect mine.