It Goes Without Saying…

Will Work For Stronger Gun Laws
Will Work For Stronger Gun Laws

that we would all love to see the end of these mass shootings, and all other violence against our children. This most precious resource is taken for granted much too often by our legislators, leading to a calloused disregard for the total numbers and sheer size of the job needing to be done. Many of us bloggers have commented on the massacre in Connecticut, but still nothing is happening. So I impose on you once again to think about something most difficult.

Yes, this rant is mostly about the fact that no one talks about Connecticut and the massacre there anymore. “Out of sight, out of mind, ” as they say. Yet this wake-up should have been the last one we needed. Twenty children and six teachers killed, all in front of classmates, how is that not the talk of the land? Why are we failing to make that a priority? Are we so afraid of having a dialogue about intelligent and manageable resolutions to this problem?

Nine children are killed every day by gunfire. Nine. I will leave you with that thought.

Guns at Home:

From 2003 to 2007, in 18 states, two thirds of accidental shooting deaths occurred in someone’s home, about half of the victims were younger than 25 years. Hemenway, David, PhD. “Risks and Benefits of a Gun in the Home.” (American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine. May 5, 2011)

There is no credible evidence of a deterrent effect of firearms or that a gun in the home reduces the likelihood or severity of injury during an altercation or break-in. Hemenway, David, PhD. “Risks and Benefits of a Gun in the Home.” (American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine. May 5, 2011)

These are the same people you trust the healthcare of your children to. They treat our children’s colds, strep throat, infections, and broken bones. Shouldn’t we at least listen to their opinion on the guns at home?

In One Year: ages 0-19

Almost 20,000 American children and teens
are shot in murders, assaults, suicides, accidents, or by police intervention. (Per The Brady Campaign To Prevent Gun Violence)

One commentator on television stated it was his belief that the only way we would start to see change was if we put up the pictures of those 9 children every day. Day after day we see the results of our own inaction. Because that is what this is. The only way for bad things to keep happening is for good people to do nothing. We all know that. I can no longer do nothing.

I just had to speak out. Don’t let this go on the back burner. I love hunting and hunters, I understand gun enthusiasts. “In all things moderation” is also a truism. Let’s exercise some moderation.

Write or call your legislator and ask for a motion to be put on the floor today. While I am unsure of your states, your US  Representatives and Senators can be located here:

www.senate.gov                        www.house.gov

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It Goes Without Saying…

An Accomplishment Worth Mentioning!

 

This great path that we travel while trying new things and blogging our results has bled over into my private life more and more. It also has led me to taking wonderful steps in adventure and having ever so much fun. Here is an example:

My husband and I thought it would be great fun to go to the headwaters of the Mississippi River and jump across. Well, being a bit naive, we didn’t realize you can walk across, but is WAAAYYY to far to jump. Walk across I did. And followed the Mississippi from the headwaters to Winona, Minnesota. That’s as far as we got this year. During that week I walked on rocks, climbed more stairs than I can count to vista views, hiked more trails than I can name, and more. All with my cane, and all in great fun.

You see, I have spinal stenosis and arthritis in both hips. I’m really not all that strong. The beauty gave me strength to keep going. It was so breathtaking, the beauty of the birds in flight, the eagles in wing, the river flowing. Oh my. Let me post a bit of a picture view.

Thank you all my many here friends. Last year I would not have even planned this trip. This year I said, well, let me see what I can do. It might be fun. Oh, what I would have missed! Thank you, all of you. Thank the power that made this wondrous land, and those who serve and protect it for future generations to enjoy.

 

Gallery

Adding Words Of Comfort

 

Aurora Colorado
Aurora Colorado (Photo credit: Ed Clemente Photography)

 

There is little that can be said or done at this time. I am trying only to open my heart and blog to those impacted, however peripherally, by the massacre in Aurora Colorado. I truly feel heartbroken for the victims and their families, and offer my hand in friendship.

 

While they work out all that must be done, it cannot be ignored that many children will have been struck hard by the making of a movie they really wanted into something they can hardly bear thinking about. It will take all of our calm thoughts to make sure we tell our children not to let the actions of a madman impact their feelings and their joy in movies. This is a hard thing to do, but in all fairness, the madman must be named.

 

In older times, when a person broke societal rules so egregiously, he or she was shunned. Never to be looked at, spoken to, spoken of again. While sometimes I think that is a little harsh, in this case, I feel it is totally appropriate. If we take the instant celebrity out of these people, there will be less attraction to this sort of action, don’t you think?

 

Well, with nothing of any importance to say, simply I am sorry and please let me know if I can help.

 

 

Aside

Seeking A Balance..NCZ Week ?

English: Dusk in Albuquerque, New Mexico, take...
English: Dusk in Albuquerque, New Mexico, taken from westside over toward the Sandia Mountains in the east. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As many of you know, I write a politically motivated blog as well as this personal journey blog. In both I try to find a balance between what I truly believe and what I would like the reader to understand. It is the news commentators and “talking heads” jobs to slant your information. I especially try to invoke those things that we might see as common values. A friend of mine sent me a meditation quote that I found very helpful in this ideal, and I would like to share parts of it and see what you think.

If we look at history, I think we can see a constant swinging back and forth between two poles, Right and Left, representing two necessary values….

I believe that we truly do need people who disagree with us on principle, if for no other reason than to make us consider our true opinion and where it comes from. I would never want to become “stuck” with an idea or ideal.

The first value seeks order, certitude, clarity and control.  It is the best way to start. But whenever that pattern is in place for too long or is too overbearing, what will eventually emerge is a critical alternate consciousness.

Simply put, stay in one place too long and you will become rooted. Many of my fellow bloggers here have discussed that very idea. That sticking to the things we may have brought into our lives from childhood would hold us back, not allow us to grow and to change. We have become a group that is very much about the change in ourselves and our lives as the changes occur. It is something I look forward to reading about and love in each of you.

. Once you have an establishment, you will eventually have a dis-establishment. When some have all the power, those who don’t have power ask very different questions, and the pendulum swings back again—eventually……..

It is understandable and predictable, although the extremism on both sides could be avoided if we had more initiated elders who held the middle.

There is a great thought for our fearless leaders and all who follow them. There is a way to avoid the extremism, simply acknowledge and understand the other side of the argument. I was very surprised and educated one day when my husband argued an issue with me by repeating the values of a different side. It wasn’t his value, but he used it as a teaching tool. I learned, surprisingly!

These thoughts are from a treatise called “A Lever And A Place To Stand” by the Center For Action And Contemplation in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The writer’s name is Richard.

Seeking A Balance..NCZ Week ?

Challenge 365..Remembering

Entry to Yellowstone National Park

Often I am working on organizing the family photos from our vacations over the years. Many of them have been kept in photo albums but there is safety in numbers. Therefore, I put a lot of them in photo sharing websites for storage and safekeeping. Having had one fire in our home, we know the value of a backup.

Going through the photos in our early years is especially painful when it is the children. That sounds odd, I know, but the reason is a good one. My oldest son was killed in an accident when he was 12 1/2 years old. It was one of those cases where he went out to play, and never came home. For many years I could not look at his school pictures, or the vacation photos, because seeing him was so incredibly painful.

Things are much better now. Time has put some distance between the pain and my memories. We also had so very much fun in the time he was with us. Today’s picture is about that. Remembering the good times we had, the fun and laughter we shared. Remembering what a good older brother he was to his siblings. Remembering all the wonderful moments. I hope you enjoy my picture today, and have a good remembering of your own!

Challenge 365..Remembering

Is “Entitlement” Bad??

Foxx wins Guardian of Seniors' Rights Award
Image by Rep. Virginia Foxx via Flickr

As the debate between Congress and the President continues, we hear about the “entitlement” programs and the “problems” with them from all around. Presidential hopeful Rick Perry says he believes that Social Security is unconstitutional, that it needs to be sent back to the states for distribution. Many candidates for the Republican party still believe that Medicare needs to be privatized, that seniors should shop for insurance coverage on the open market. The bottom line is this: It’s all about money. Social Security is safe for 30 years, then begins to go upside down with collection vs. distribution. Medicare is going broke now, largely due to the high costs of medical care.

The question is…why are the lawmakers making it sound like people are receiving something they shouldn’t? Almost every person receiving Social Security is getting it because they paid their taxes when they were working. Some people were exempt. In Wisconsin, one of our own Congresspersons got SS because he lost his father when he was just a boy. He received benefits until he was 18 years old. Some people get it due to a disability. For the most part, the number of people receiving SS that are “gaming the system” is so minute they are not important. As for Medicare, if the hospitals, doctors, and medicine wasn’t so high, the cost of Medicare would go down as well.

The fact is this: most of these programs have been paid for by the people receiving them. They are good programs that provide for a very real need among our elderly and lesser advantaged. To take that away, to put the recipients on the defensive, is an act of unkindness, not to mention extremely unhelpful. We should be figuring out how to create better and stronger programs.

Is “Entitlement” Bad??

Not All People Are “Bad”

Scott Walker

Our current Republican Governor Scott Walker has been very busy over the last month. The agenda has been on cutting ” waste” out of services, and ensuring “proper” procedure for others. It is unfortunate that he does not, or does not want to, see the harm he is doing. In an effort to cut waste he is also cutting service to hundreds of innocent people. It is these very innocents that I will discuss today.

This is the story of someone I will call M. M lives in an apartment with her four grandchildren. She lost two of her children, the parents. She is the guardian of an 11 year old, 14 year old, a 16 year old, and a 17 year old. M and her grandchildren receive Social Security. They pay $800.00 a month in rent, $200 in electricity, and $250 a month for the gas company’s budget heating plan. They are not eligible for food stamps, as the total of Social Security is more than the requirements allow. All four children are teenagers, so food is a struggle. They do not receive any social support with the singular exception of Health Care. They take the bus everywhere, and the rates are full fare. They are on Badger Care, so when they do go to the doctor, they must take the bus across the city to get to the doctors and health facility.

M sold her home a year ago, at a loss. She is still paying for the tax lien, as it is deducted from her check monthly. The place she rents needs a new roof, the kids don’t want to move because they are happy in their schools. M. attends school as well, trying to increase her reading and math skills in the hopes of helping the young ones with their homework. M. also works as a waitress to supplement her income.
“Those children need lots of food and lots of clothes” she says. It isn’t important that everything is up to date, just available.

How are Governor Walker’s policies affecting M? With the increase in her share of the Badger Care co-pay she prays that she and the children stay healthy and will not need medicine on a regular basis. The cuts to the bus are going to impact every avenue of their lives, from attending school to getting to that doctor.

I asked M. what she would say to the Governor if she had a chance. She said, “I would tell him, not all us poor people are bad. Some of us is trying really hard!”

I see M. twice a week in a school that she attends daily. She is the epitome of trying hard.

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Not All People Are “Bad”