A week ago, a friend messaged me late on Friday. She said “we made it through to the weekend!” And I was like “I mean yeah except those pesky kids and all their bullshit.”
Well folks, here we are on a Friday: you made it. You made it through the week. That is if you aren’t a parent, or you aren’t working odd jobs, odd hours, or multiple jobs.
But nevertheless… you made it. So let’s get to this week’s newsletter.
Around the World
Fascism is on the rise, folks. So much so that I talked about it in my podcast next week (you can preview it on Youtube, or below). I’m really starting to feel like I belong to Fox News though on this topic, because the more cancel culture grows, the more I feel that Democrats have just as much a tendency to fascism as Republicans do.
Think of it: every time they try and suppress viewpoints, suppress information, cancel someone for being against the “vote blue no matter who” mantra, or claim that anything they simply don’t agree with, don’t like, or haven’t read the up-to-date information on… they call it misinformation, or a threat to democracy.
But do you know what the biggest threat is to democracy? Suppression. Censorship. Cancel culture.
What is most disturbing to me is in the case of local media, at least where I live. There is an argument afoot that “both sides-ing journalism” is harmful to democracy because it gives a mouthpiece to an objectively grotesque underbelly of society. But at the same time, if journalists do not offer the perspective of all views, what is to be gained?
One, singular, view that then becomes suppression of other whatever-it-happens-to-be out there. This is not a reflection of America, as a whole.
And I hate this with my whole being, because it offers the perspective that racists should be allowed to spew their racist hatred; transphobia permissible in the public space… and so on. Is what they say right? No. But the principles upon which this country was founded allow for those hateful things to be said, no matter how grotesque or abhorrent.
The Constitution does not save anyone from consequences from their words and actions, this is for certain. So consequence-away. Combat with love, sue people… whatever.
But outright suppression? That shit is wrong. It is anti-democratic. It is fascism, defined.
More on my perspective in next week’s pod, again you can already listen to it in its entirety here:
Around My World
School is back in full swing over here. I’m taking a course in Public Governance, and growing more skeptical of the concept of the “national deficit” by the day as a result. My kids are back at it too. I designed three, entire curriculums over the summer for my five year old, all based around projects in history, STEM, and art. My high schooler is at it, and also dual enrolled in classes at the community college. And my oldest daughter deferred a year to have surgery later this winter, but is taking classes at the community college as well, and playing tennis for their team.
As it turns out, my kids are taking two of their classes at community together, and they invited me to take their painting class with them. Of course, they were probably just being polite; but I graciously accepted, and let them turn my office into their painting space for these 15 weeks. Because wasn’t that nice of them to humor me like that?
You Can’t Unsee This
I mean… is it entirely wrong?
My big pet peeve right now are people complaining about the ongoing availability of Telehealth services. I’ve heard it from a couple doctors, some family members that are nurses, and a hell of a lot of people on social media that work in a variety of areas of healthcare.
The complaints run the gamut, but very few of them have actually boiled down to actual serious reasons related to health. Most of them are things like “the wifi never works,” or “I cannot figure out how to do audio,” or – my favorite – “patients take it as an opportunity to spend too much time discussing their issues, because they’re in the comfort of their own home.” The audacity. The audacity of patients wanting to actually be able to have conversations with their doctors without being herded out like cattle.
I can certainly see there are some issues that are harder to address over Telehealth, like a rash or something that really does require a hands-on, fingers-up approach (barf). But there are so many things that can be addressed over Telehealth, and with the rapid expansion of it due to COVID it not only makes it safer for people while the pandemic still rages, and it gives access to people to see their doctors that otherwise do not always get to go.
For myself, I am a mom with very little support system, at times (most of the time). Because of this, I am rarely able to see my doctor; once a year if I’m lucky. The pandemic opening Telehealth, though, has allowed me to have regular visits with my primary care physician and really start addressing my allergies and asthma in ways I could only dream of doing with my 5 year old in tow at the office. Both issues are now much better off in terms of their management than they have been in over a decade (think about that for a minute), and I am able to see my doctor more frequently to do this simply because all I have to do is log in to Zoom. I don’t have to fight with my kid to wear his mask or stop opening and closing drawers, I don’t need anyone to drive my older kids to their school and sports activities… I can literally do the appointment from anywhere. This has been an absolute game changer for me, and I am certain it has been for others.
So to the people complaining about Telehealth without understanding the circumstances under which it really and truly has changed lives, and possibly lengthened them? Well y’all just need to shut the fuck up. Quit being lazy, quit being stubborn, and start remembering why you got into healthcare to begin with.
(And again, I recognize the instances where a hands on approach really and truly is needed… this is why both modalities need to be available.)
…on that note of availability, I do have to say that if appointments were more readily available in person, Telehealth may not be so widely needed still. Four times in the last couple of weeks I have called and been offered in person appointments literal weeks from the time I made the call. The Telehealth visit over Zoom? The next day.
Have a good weekend, everyone! That is… if weekends are a thing for you…
With neither a medical nor scientific degree to speak of, I still feel confident enough to say with some authority that things in America have gone sideways on COVID. If you’re getting some real March 2020 vibes, you aren’t alone. Since all of our Thanksgivings were marred with the news of Omicron, and the existential dread of this immune-escaping variant – that happens to also spread like wildfire – has hovered over our collective heads as we waited “to see,” things in the United States seem to have gotten a little … well, hopeless and nihilistic.
Perhaps exacerbating it all has been the utter silence of the American government. Even today, when Biden wanted to give his “stark warning” to the American people, it was no more than three or four sentences, it was not broadcast live on television or any streaming social media, and it included the unsubstantiated claim that if you are vaccinated and boosted you’ll be just fine.
Maybe we shouldn’t be surprised. Even knowing what the Delta variant could do, our government and national public health had their own Mission Accomplished moment back in May – declaring vaccinated Americans good as gravy, boosters “likely unnecessary,” and masks a thing of the past. Before any child under the age of 12 could be protected, they implemented a foolish and sloppy “let her rip, Serg” plan that – for whatever reason – they thought would encourage people to get vaccinated. It was then that they revealed for us who they really are: the same circus that was in before, just with different faces, more clever catch-phrases, and varied ideologies on all the identity stuff. And by the same circus, I mean the one in way over their heads, but – in the end – privileged, beleaguered by American exceptionalism, and careless.
We all know how that went, and while we can quibble about responsibility until the sun burns out: from the Delta surge, the United States came out with tens of thousands of breakthrough deaths, over 1,000 children dead, and even less appetite by, welp, anyone to do anything about it. “Pandemic of the unvaccinated” or not, that is on Biden’s watch. The Biden that held a vigil for ‘400,000 souls lost’ the night before he was inaugurated could barely be burdened enough to have a staffer post a Tweet after the country passed double that just this week.
The truth of the matter is that just as the White House is silent now, the actions then were timed duplicitously in conjunction with several things insidious. Most notably: media and Republican pressure to get rid of masks, and, the beginning of summer. There is no way ulterior motivations were absent here. Among them could have been: of getting Americans back to work well before the September expiration of pandemic unemployment, off-year elections to focus on, to appease Republicans and incentivize vaccines under the pre-dystopian rulebook, and, quite obviously: the economy, baby. The full picture, we may never know.
And yet even understanding that politics and the economy is top priority for the neoliberals in our present-day capitalist dystopian hellscape, many of us continue – weeks later, and as Omicron literally explodes all over the United States – to feel bewildered by the Administration and its total lack of communication on what is to come, and what we can do. To be frank, though, I’m not sure why we should have expected anything different.
The promises made last year of always giving it to us straight, no matter how hard it would be, were lies. The pandemic game plan published to the Biden- Harris 2020 website was just that: a game. It was all talk, all a show; and one that effectively stopped shortly after the inauguration. In reality, besides throwing a lot of money people’s way, “challenging” Americans to wear masks for a couple months, and overseeing the roll out of vaccines (which continues to have bumps and hurdles in many ways), Biden hasn’t really actually done much on COVID.
This is the way things turned out to be for almost everything Biden ran on. Let’s face it: in absence of a robust spending economy and all time low in jobless claims (more likely a product of people either being kicked off pandemic unemployment, or – simply – dying), the Democrats don’t have much to tout this coming election season as having accomplished this first year. Sure, they have their infrastructure bill, and lead pipes being replaced are great and all. But what they have failed to do is glaring: lower prescription prices, substantive climate policy, immigration reform, paid family leave, an extension of the Child Tax Credits, student loan forgiveness, a higher minimum wage, expanded Medicare benefits, Roe codified into law, student loan repayment extension, consistently lower gas prices, a solution for record high inflation, answers and accountability on the insurrection on January 6th, voting rights, a robust COVID 19 testing program, public pandemic preparedness, universal preschool… I’ll stop there.
You may be asking yourself: how? How the hell could we be here? Only a year after elected, the guy who was “made for this role” is watching as America burns, and his entire caucus seems to be standing right there with him.
The answer is simple: we showed them who we are too.
When the Biden Administration and his CDC ripped off the masks in late spring, but people kept dying, we still went to Hawaii in droves. When we learned that Delta infections could breakthrough easily, and that the vaccinated could spread, the phrase “I got my vaccines, I’m protected, I’m tired of feeling sorry for the unvaccinated” became a normalized trope. Within weeks, stories of single moms being infected after being forced back into the service economy made the news. We still demanded our party of 15 be seated inside at Chili’s. When the CDC Director coined the phrase “pandemic of the unvaccinated,” full-knowing the issue was far more nuanced than that and that the unprotected included children and many vulnerable fully vaccinated adults, we lapped it up like dogs and used it to justify 4th of July parties, more vacations, and an obscene amount of finger pointing.
Similarly, as Delta has begun to surge again, and Omicron has exploded seemingly overnight, we’ve still kept spending. We’ve still kept traveling. In one breath public health tells us we’re in for a hard winter, in the next “but enjoy the holidays.” Our concern this winter isn’t whether we have enough ventilators or testing reagents, rather if toys and clothes would be delivered in time for Christmas. If it sounds bananas, it’s because it is; but the Administration is the ring leader, and we are the monkeys they’re feeding them to.
Admittedly, the return of pandemic restrictions are frustrating. Things closing, the expected fall out of a global pandemic – like product shortages and inflation – are annoying. But the more we all complain about it, the less likely Biden is to do anything about it. Because this normalcy: the vacations to Europe, and the ability to cram as many people into the movie theater to see Spiderman as possible, or to sit inside an Applebees and gorge ourselves on chicken fingers… these are the priorities of the American people that matter: the ones spending money, the only thing tangible Biden and his Democrats can show for their time in the majority thus far.
As we stare into the Nietzschean abyss of hopelessness, with a pandemic raging, and some still caring about each other -even those that don’t seem to care for themselves – it’s hard to see much different now than this time last year. I have always said that the Democrats are just another side of the same coin the Republicans are on. But it isn’t so much a coin as it is a side show. A side show in the most hopeless and dark circus that exists.
But hey, at least we can still cope through memes, right?
The global pandemic we currently find ourselves in is, without a doubt, not a war. It is not. Analogizing it to one is both incorrect, and irresponsible.
Let’s walk through this.
Donald Trump Is Not A War Time President
Early on, after finally admitting that the virus causing COVID-19 infections and deaths around the world was actually a problem (and not just a hoax brought on by the fake news and Democratic party), Donald Trump switched gears and decided this was “the unseen enemy.” He was to be our honorable Commander in Battle.
While it is tempting to label this virus an enemy, as we do with a lot of medical maladies, really it’s just a talking point. A talking point for the victims who fall ill with it to feel empowered; a talking point for those who swoop in with remedies to claim victory.
But Donald Trump is not a war time president, and this is not a war. It’s is a global pandemic of a highly communicable virus, that in rare instances causes mortality. Unfortunately, at the present, enough instances are proving to occur on the whole that the mortality rate is quite high for us, in a healthcare system that was taxed going in.
Allowing Donald Trump to overshadow the egregious and flagrant wrong-doings in the prior days, weeks, months, and years of his Presidency – including, but certainly not limited to, the fact that only months ago he, a sitting President, was Impeached on counts of Abuse of Power and Obstruction of Congress – to overshadow all of that, and come out of this spinning the inevitable success of modern medical science into his position as a war hero (conveniently in time for the 2020 Presidential election) would make every person that ever likened this to a war complicit in the necessary election win that would come with that honor.
Donald Trump is not a war time President. This is not a war.
Frontline Workers Are Not Soldiers In Battle
This is probably my point that will flare the most feathers, but before jumping to conclusions, hear me out.
The sacrifices and risks associated with working in any quote-unquote essential line of work right now are, unmistakably, great. In particular, those that work in medicine, pharmacy, even janitors in the hospital setting; and especially in light of the on-again off-again relationship they have with adequate and complete personal protective equipment – well, those people are by and large in hot water from now until the time a vaccine is readily available.
So are the grocery workers, who have every cough, sniffle, and sneeze effectively sprayed all over them several times a day. So are a lot of people that continue to work to allow the rest of us to afford such luxuries as food, water, and electricity.
But they ain’t soldiers. We will not be erecting a monument to them that looks like doctors, nurses, and janitors Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima. They may receive additional compensation and pay for risk assessment and to incentivize them to work, but it is not hazard pay.
This isn’t a measure to disrespect or discredit the work they are doing, and the sacrifices they are making. Do not mistake me: they are heroes.
Infectious diseases happen, and while COVID-19 is new and a lot about it is unknown, it is a part of the job. It is a part of the call to duty that came well before that person in the wet market in China even thought about eating the undercooked bat. Every time you step foot in a medical facility, there is always the element of the unknown. Sure, this time it is higher of a probability that you could catch it. But even I wonder to myself whenever I’ve had to take my kids to the emergency room for a sports injury or high fever: you know, I wonder if the person in the room next to us has bacterial meningitisand here I am exposed to it. Because it is a very real possibility, and that possibility is always there.
And there are two things most dangerous about likening the “frontliners” as we now like to call them with warriors in the trenches of something like WWI, or possibly worse: it sets a dangerous precedent for their own personal actions that could, in effect, result in even more death.
For one, in continues on this dangerous “take one for the team” mantra we Americans like to espouse. Arguably, this mantra is one of the things that got us here in the first place. We don’t feel well. We have chills, body aches, maybe a cough. But your [insert workplace] needs you. You are so essential that if you call in sick, the ship will go down. So you go to work, and infect several more people, putting more stress on the system than what would have come of you just staying home for a few days until you got the all clear from your immune system.
A more dangerous one:
Early on in the worst of Italy’s days, a nurse committed suicide because she started feeling a little punky, and decided to swab herself. She tested positive for COVID-19, and rather than just recover as 98% of other people do, she committed suicide to prevent spreading the disease to anyone else. Dangerous does not even begin to describe the precedent that we set when we then venerate this poor, clearly unwell, woman as something like a kamikaze doing the right thing by her country.
Tangential to this as well is the fact that the vast majority of people working in these essential jobs deserve a recognition of their own. Like the firefighters and many police after 9/11, or actual soldiers that have fought and won wars for centuries, their position in this is unique and should be treated accordingly. (Perhaps a monument would be appropriate, somewhere and at some point… but to replicate Iwo Jima would be a discredit to both today’s and yesterday’s heroes.)
The Messaging Is Blinding Us With Fear
In World War II, the messaging and propaganda was so profound, particularly in European countries in opposition to the allies (mainly, Germany) that people were so blinded by fear of the war, that they largely did not see what was going on right in front of their faces. The same went for Americans: blinded by the fear of another costly and deadly battle, Americans resisted involving themselves in the war – in spite of the humanitarian crisis that had unfolded in the Jewish and “undesirable” communities in Europe.
This is what happens in a war: diplomatic and political messaging is so critical for the community to get on board with whatever the agenda of the leadership of the time happens to be. Everyone does it. Now, in treating this like a war, our community leaders and politicians are doing it again.
Every week seems to have some sort of a theme to it. The first was all about the exponential growth charts, and statistical analyses, and the Johns Hopkins interactive website. The second were 45 paragraph letters from Emergency Room physicians who are really so busy they aren’t sleeping much, but also have the time to write lengthy explanations of exactly why we should be concerned about COVID-19. The third week was the rash of viral posts from Italy. Warnings to Americans. Rising death tolls. And that horrible video of the woman leafing through the obituary pages that went on and on and on, as if we weren’t sad enough about this already. The fourth week started the stay at home campaign, which continues today; coupled with a lot of mixed messaging coming from all sides of the political spectrum. Take the hydrochloroquine, but don’t. It works, but Trump touted it so probably skip it. Listen to your doctor, question him. Bill Gates is a hero, I don’t trust what he says. Open the economy, no don’t. Go for a walk to get exercise, just kidding that’s a bad idea. Dip your groceries in bleach, wait just kidding soap and water is fine bleach will kill you.
It is exhausting just listening to all of this: the analysis and the arguing and the incessant viral postings about what this politician did wrong and what that politician said, and who is complicit in this and who is a hero, and PPE and bats and … and … and …
This is the point of propaganda, and while I’m not likening what Trump, his “task force,” and more local governments are doing right now to what the Germans did in WWII, there is definite messaging going on here. If there weren’t, we wouldn’t have new buzz phrases, like “in these unprecedented times,” and “we are navigating through unchartered waters,” and – my newest favorite, “we are here to meet this moment.” You also wouldn’t have gotten probably 600 emails from every place you have ever shopped or spent money at, in an effort to let you know what increased measures they were doing to keep things safe and clean – all the same copy and pasted letter full of buzz words and messaging that was meant to calm your nerves, but only – instead – piqued your fears.
What happens when we are afraid in times of war and stress is we act irrationally. We fight with our community members, we shutter our hearts to those in need. A nursing home in my community got flack a week ago for telling a patient he could not return because he had suffered from COVID-19, even though he had recovered and tested negative two subsequent times before being released from the hospital. A homeless man a town over was unable to get a propane bottle for his camping stove, that allows him to cook his food and keep himself warm, because it is now considered a “non-essential good.” One woman in a Mom’s Facebook group I am in locally sparred it out with me about this, when I commented on a post about it asking how we could help him. The defining moment of our argument was when she said that because we live in California – “no one is going to freeze to death!”
The Social Contract In Times Of War
Few people realize that what is going on right now in our own communities from a public policy perspective is a matter of the social contract that we all live in as American citizens. The basic premise of our structure in society and government is that in exchange for the protection of our overarching body of government and government leaders (and all the services that come with it, including public hospitals, police, and fire), we are willing to in effect sacrifice certain freedoms and liberties in exchange for that protection. The idea comes from the great political philosopher Thomas Hobbes, whose writings inspired our revolutionary forefathers when he said:
“Whatsoever therefore is consequent to a time of war, where every man is enemy to every man, the same consequent to the time wherein men live without other security than what their own strength and their own invention shall furnish them withal. In such condition there is no place for industry… no knowledge of the face of the earth; no account of time; no arts;no letters; no society; and which is worst of all, continual fear, and danger of violent death; and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” (see: The Leviathan, by Thomas Hobbes)
It’s a bit wordy, so I’ll break it down for you: if left to our own devices at certain times in society, life would be unnecessarily awful and painful; and would end quickly, whether we liked it or not. Sometimes, let us help you. You just have to give up a little for us to be able to do that – in times of war, mainly. But pandemics are also times that it could be argued we have to retain less to be able to live more.
As soon as Trump started declaring National Emergencies, Major Natural Disasters, and referring to himself as a wartime president, the road was paved for every Tom, Dick, and Harry politician, from big time national leadership, all the way down to Mo, your local City Councilman who shows up for the council meeting drunk and in his swim trunks every week, the diplomatic and political power to chip away at those freedoms and liberties we hold so dear to us, in the name of the social contract and protection in times of turmoil.
Do I think that there are a lot of measures that do – absolutely – need to be taken to curb the spread of the novel virus that causes COVID-19? Absolutely. Shutting down bars, movie theaters, churches… that all makes sense. Social distancing and increased hygiene and safety measures – absolutely.
But locally, at least where I am, we have gone far afield from just shuttering non-essential businesses and asking people to stay home as much as possible. Now, here in California, cities are requiring by law that people wear face coverings, even when just driving down the street to get their mail. Alone. They’ve shut down sections of stores that disconnected and privileged city officials think can wait a while, like the clearance clothing racks at a local Wal Mart – in a community that houses thousands of migrant workers who are low income and do not have access to computers to simply order online.
Overreach doesn’t really describe what is going on here. And while I get it: we need to stay in, we need to physically distance, we also have to live our lives.
In recent days, I have talked to several seniors that are either family, or friends of family. They all sounded the same, exact resounding chord: they appreciate the community trying to protect them, the most vulnerable; but at this point, quality of life is an issue, and this is not a life worth living. One where you cannot go for a walk in the warm sun, or have the smallest of gatherings with less than 10 people seems cruel.
Perhaps the most striking thing told to me, which I then heard a physician – a medical doctor – echo on television about his own 87 year old mother’s sentiment: what if I die in isolation here, and I have never had the opportunity to hug my grandchildren one more time?
Certainly, the social contract is a necessary part of what keeps us alive. But only in war should it be evoked to such the degree that it is being evoked in communities through out America right now. And this is not a war.
It is tempting to liken this global pandemic to a battle. It requires strength, perseverance, and fight within all of us to get through whatever effects we feel from it – be they physical illness, economic hardship, or mental health belaboring as a result of the physical and social restrictions placed on us. But it is not a war. And we are not warriors.
There’s been a refreshing and, simultaneously, not-so-refreshing trend this last week or two on the Internet, and that is that people have stopped talking about the demise of American society and values as we knew them pre-Trump, and moved back to the ol’ getting offended at everything on the Internet.
I say it’s refreshing because – you know – it’s a break from this Trumpian shit show that none of us seem to be able to do a single thing about.
I say not-so-refreshing because we should still be standing up for ourselves within our American government and politics and, well, people getting offended by everything on the Internet is obnoxious.
Case #1 – Legging-Gate
If you didn’t know, earlier this week some people were heading out on a flight through United Airlines, free of charge by way of an employee friend and family benefit. To be clear: their tickets were free. *Free under the explicit condition that they follow the dress code and behave appropriately on the flight. Three of them (the kids) showed up wearing leggings (a violation of the dress code) and they were not allowed to board without changing into proper attire.
Completely understanding that they were breaking the rules, I hear the kids threw on dresses over the offending leggings, and just went about their business – being appreciative of their free tickets, I assume. Except some nosy nelly standing in line went crazy, snapped photos, went viral, and the world lost their fricken minds.
All jokes and arguments about the moral fortitude of dress codes aside, those free tickets have always come at a cost: a simple dress code and appropriate behavior, which, I will repeat, the flyers were aware of. Which they – in fact – had no problem with when reminded.
But not the Internet! The Internet had to lose its ever-loving collective mind over it, and instantly a new viral story, a variety of memes, and 200-comment-length debates were born.
Of course I engaged in one of those debates, because I am me. I was accused of being opposed to progress. Of being a robot. and a whole host of other things by someone who is at least ten years older than me, and yet is most known for posting photos of herself in her super hero underpants on Instagram.
The bottom lines to Legging-Gate are:
Rules are rules. Get over it, unless you want to ruin that benefit for everyone; and,
If you want to change the rules, showing up and being all “screw you I do what I want” is not the way to do it; finally,
THE PEOPLE GUILTY OF SHOWING UP IN LEGGINGS FOR THEIR ENTIRELY FREE UNITED AIRLINES FLIGHT DID NOT EVEN CARE.
Case #2 – The Prom Dress Good Girls
I don’t know all the facts of this case, but it’s another dress code thing that I think has been blown way out of proportion.
So prom season is coming, and some high school in somewhere – I don’t know – posted examples of what was acceptable attire and what was not acceptable attire. The acceptable said “good girl” over it, and I don’t know what the tone or connotation of that was, but it pissed people off.
Then it raised the whole dress code for young women thing, which I am in the minority (it seems) on these days, in that I believe dress codes are a good thing. I think they teach kids to respect authority (which will be important when they have jobs with dress codes they absolutely must follow as adults). They teach them how to dress for certain occasions. I also don’t always think that dress codes are about calling a girl/woman slutty or inappropriate or something to be ashamed of, but rather for their protection. And while I know that the real issue is teaching boys/young men the appropriate way to act, we just aren’t at that stage of the game yet. I wish we were, but we aren’t and thinking that pretending like we are will stop young men from acting poorly is irresponsible thinking.
Beyond that, I live in a town where the local high school has virtually no dress code that I am aware of. I have seen girls walking to the school in booty shorts and bikini tops – no jokes, and boys walking to the school with their pants around their ankles. Moreover, our old babysitter knew several kids her graduating year (just a couple years ago) that were suspended for having sex on the dance floor during homecoming. Let that sink in for a minute. In light of those incidences, alone, I’m all for dress codes for prom. And sex ed classes prior to prom. And open conversations with our kids about appropriate and inappropriate behavior. But dress codes too.
Side note: the school has since apologized for the dress code signs and good girl comment, so everyone seriously does need to calm down on this one. It’s over.
Case #3 – Kid With SPD Gets Rough TSA Pat-Down, Handles It Like A Champ, Mom Records It To Go Viral On Social Media, World Explodes With Anger
Did you guys hear about this kid with sensory processing disorder who triggered a red flag with the TSA and had to get a pat down? Instead of – oh I don’t know – standing there and helping him through it, Mom instead demanded the presence of two police officers, and broke out her video camera, posting it on social media instantly with the caption “we were treated like dogs.”
I presume she was opening her GoFundMe account for mental anguish immediately afterwards.
Of course if a kid got through with a bomb – a tactic often used by terrorists – the world would have wondered why the kid hadn’t been treated more doggedly.
Now even though the kid handled it like a champ, and there were police present so obviously no misconduct took place, the comment sections of the Internet went wild with people calling it molestation, calling for the firing of the TSA agent, and – my personal favorite – “no one could see what happened behind that TSA agent’s fat ass, he likely groped your son, sue the government NOW NOW NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Case #4 – Daddy-Daughter Dances
I guess it’s Daddy-Daughter Dance season. News to me, but I’ve seen all kinds of posts by friends and family taking their kids to them. (I think we may be too introverted of a family.)
This raised a whole issue, though, about eliminating gender-specific-themed events with kids altogether. Which I totally get – as a child that grew up in a single family home, my mother having left us when I was only 10, I was constantly left out of mother-daughter events because …well… I didn’t have a full time mother.
The issue was raised because a single mother apparently tried to take her daughter to a daddy-daughter dance and was turned away. Now, I get that the situation was a little weird – the woman dressed up as a man, she even colored on a beard. That’s just strange, even though she was clearly just trying to make a sad situation cool. Except it turned out to be completely uncool when she was turned away simply because she wasn’t actually a man.
Because. She. Was. Not. A Man.
And this was not the first time this kind of a thing has happened.
So some articles go around the Internet about eliminating gender-specific events in schools once and for all, and – big surprise – a debate breaks out. Is there anything on the Internet that doesn’t result in debate anymore?
The bottom line is that irrespective of the sanctity of your husband taking his daughter to some stupid dance every spring, or your son having a special mother-son school breakfast, this is 2017. It’s time to recognize that not everyone is living the same life as you, and sometimes those events hurt people’s feelings, especially the kids’. Go on dates with your kids on your own time.
Case #5 – Another Wardrobe Malfunction
Had enough of debates inspired by clothing yet? I sure as shit thought I had, and then I saw an article calling for an end to poking fun at dumb dads.
I guess it was inspired by a onesie that has instructions for a dumb dad printed on the face of it. For one, it was cute. For two, dumb dads do actually exist. For three, I want to know where I can get one for my husband, because really Nick – it isn’t funny anymore that you can’t figure out where the baby’s arm goes.
Boy did the trolls come out for that one, though – writing multi-paragraph dissertations in the comments section about patriarchy and sexism and reverse sexism and dads are perfectly capable of dressing their kids in fact they are more capable than moms and JESUS FUCKING CHRIST CAN PEOPLE SERIOUSLY NOT TAKE A JOKE ANYMORE?
I am going to say something quite shocking right now (apparently): there really does exist a subculture of male parents that could otherwise be described as dumb dads. They are given chance after chance after chance to be just as qualified of a parent at the little things as mom is, but no matter what they do, they always fuck it up. That’s just reality, really of the human condition because – newsflash – we are not all perfect at everything. Dumb dads are actually capable of being really good parents and at the same time too stupid about little things like putting on a onesie or throwing a pony tale in their daughter’s hair.
My husband is one of them. While he’s a great parent in certain ways, he just can’t in others. On more than one occasion he’s asked me for help getting the kids dressed, and today – ironically about ten minutes after I read that article – he put the baby’s diaper on (AGAIN) in such a way that it fell off and I was peed all over.
Being peed on sucks and it’s nice as a mom to be able to vent to the Internet about that. Except you can’t because then you are questioning the parental capabilities of all fathers (seriously, WHY?).
Honestly, the issue isn’t about sexism or patriarchy, but rather the inability to admit that we aren’t perfect at everything. More appealing than a man so effeminate and insecure in himself that he has to get defensive every time a woman questions his parenting abilities is – without a doubt – a man that owns his inadequacies and buys the onesie with instructions himself. Because it’s funny.
I assume this is only the beginning, you guys. Trump has been in office for a couple months now. America needs to get back to the important work of being offended by everything, believing everything we read on the Internet at face-value, and refusing to ever admit that we are ever in the wrong about anything. Ever.
I think we all just need to simmer the frick down, but then we would have to pay attention to what is going on around us again. So continue on, people of the Interwebs. Continue on.
If you are like me, you are overwhelmed by the news and events of the last 48 hours. America, in all its glory, elected a racist, homophobic, sexist, bigot to the White House. A man accused of sexually assaulting dozens of women. A man whose very campaign premises were based in the most anti-American tenants ever run on a major ticket in the history of the United States. Who was described by major economic and global organizations as one of the greatest threats to national and global security, on par with ISIS. Whose campaign promises actually and literally spit in the face of the Constitution of this once great country – the very Constitution that gave him the ability to rise to power to begin with.
America: you had one job.
Just under half of Americans that voted said that those policies and beliefs were OK. Either because they aligned themselves with those anti-American tenants, or because they could tolerate all of that in exchange for something else Trump offered.
To say I am in shock is an understatement.
Now, the aftermath has begun to unfold and – so it seems – we are in turmoil. Our president has asked for a peaceful transfer of power, and in response people are taking to the streets and beating and attacking people under this new mantra that to make America great again we need to get out anyone that isn’t just like us. Trump’s win was validation of the deeply seeded racism and sexism that has plagued our country since the days of Jim Crow, and before. Less than 100 years since women earned the right to vote, and “grab her pussy” is more socially acceptable of a phrase than “she deserves to be treated equally.”
To say I am sickened is also an understatement. A gross understatement.
And through all of this, I have learned a lot.
I have learned that very few people actually have an understanding of the Constitution of the United States. They have a general idea of the things they like about it, like the 2nd Amendment and its whole thing about gun ownership; but they seem to have cherry picked those bits and pieces that are convenient for them, overlooking the other parts equally as important and valid and right and what it is to be American.
I am assuming, based on his campaign rhetoric and behavior during the election; in addition to his unprecedented silence now in the face of the violent election aftermath, our president-elect is one of those people completely unaware of what abilities and protections the Constitution Articles hold within them.
Like the ability to worship whatever the fuck God you want without having to worry about being beaten at your local 7-11 over those beliefs.
Or the ability to live your life without hate crimes and discrimination being enacted against you, especially if you are in kindergarten and just want to get your goddamned lunch without having the taunting of “build a wall, build a wall” shouted in your face because you happen to have brown skin.
The list is seemingly endless of people and classes that Donald Trump doesn’t understand are protected under the Constitution. Not only people of all religions and race, but those with disabilities. Women. People of varied sexual orientation… All of those people are protected under the Constitution and our incoming president doesn’t understand that.
There’s also the whole thing about freedom to protest and freedom of speech, which I get is why all the Trump supporters felt they had a right to enact their hate crimes over the past several months of his campaign. But then to turn around and say that the people protesting the bigoted policies of the most anti-American president elect is “wimpy,” “shameful,” “pointless,” or “wrong,” completely misses the very definition of what it means to be an American.
I was raised to believe, and have degrees in political science and philosophy to back those beliefs up with facts and rational discourse, that America is the place where you can come and be whomever you are and, to put it bluntly, not have to take shit for it.
If you are gay, you get to be gay. If you are a woman, you get to be a woman. If you are black or Hispanic, you get to be a black or Hispanic.
You do not have to be subjected to discrimination or hate crimes. The Constitution guarantees that you are free from those things for just being you.
The Constitution also ensures that you get to voice your opinion, which I understand goes both ways. You get to voice your opinion, for example in a public speech, in a Facebook post, or in a peaceful protest, regardless of whether or not anyone sees it valid or worthy.
You do not get to beat your beliefs into someone until they are so bloodied and bruised that they have to take a trip to the emergency room.
With great sadness, it seems that with the Trump presidency, that all seems to be out the window.
Where this leaves me is with the understanding and acceptance that at least half of America, and America’s next president, is actually not American.
At least half of America, and America’s next president, believes that freedom from discrimination and racism and sexism, and that freedom of religion, is not a thing.
At least half of America, and America’s next president, believes it has the right to beat you if you look different or you love someone of the same gender.
At least half of America, and America’s next president, believes it can tell you what to do with your body just because you are a woman.
If this is America, it is no longer my country.
People keep crying out on Facebook – “get over it!” “This is democracy!” “The Republicans felt like this when Obama was elected!” and “He won, we have to deal with it!”
Actually no. No, we don’t.
And this isn’t an issue of Democrat versus Republican, but rather right and wrong.
That’s the beauty of being an actual American. You get to not accept things that you know are actually, factually, wrong. You get to say “this is not the principle of our country” and you get to call for an action that is both Constitutional and fair.
You get to say that a man who runs to be an anti-American president cannot take office, if this is going to continue to be the Constitutionally abiding America we once prided ourselves on being.
Otherwise, it is no longer America.
No president in history has ever been as anti-American as Donald Trump. Up until 48 hours ago, I would have never considered saying the words “he is not my president,” or “this is not my country.” But it isn’t, and he will never be.
Unfortunately – and I say that not really meaning what I’m saying – I might lose some followers after this post.
It’s not really unfortunate.
It’s fucking great.
A little known fact about this here blog lady is that she (I’m talking about myself) used to work in politics. First as an event and fundraising planner, then as a community organizer, and finally – just before the burn out and disillusionment set in – as a voter registration coordinator. It’s very complicated really, and I’d prefer to not get into it; but I say the disillusionment set in because at some point I was at some bullshit political meeting and not a single person in the room I spoke to could describe to me any of the following:
a) what policies they liked that their candidates were proposing;
b) what they found to have been “jobs well done” by their current local representatives; and,
c) a goddamn thing about the Constitution or the way American government works.
So I got out and buried my head in the sand for many, many years. I went to grad school, thought long and hard about how much the world really did need to be educated; then in a rough and tumble-y turn of events, I became a Stay At Home Mom, and part time writer and artist.
As my kids age, and depend on me less, I have started reading more and following the political sector once again. CNN and MSNBC are on the television as background noise as I cook, clean, and fold the laundry. And while I will never get involved in local politics again, with the 2016 election I am rapidly finding myself embroiled – mentally – in everything-politics, for every minute my mind isn’t wandering into the “what did I do with my life???” abyss.
That being said, this isn’t a political blog. It never will be. Occasionally I’ll post something that could be considered a political issue. But to talk about policy, candidates, and the like – well you won’t be finding that here.
Except for today.
I feel like we need to clear the air on this whole Don Trump thing. And I’m sure that after clearing it, a select few of you will be out the door. Never to return. Goodbye forever. Sayonara.
As I said: good.
Don Trump Is Racist
When W Bush’s comments to Muslims shortly after 9/11, assuring them that we welcome and accept all of them and do not regard them as terrorists – when the comments of the man who was unambiguously the worst president in the history of our time are now becoming the voice of reason, you better believe there is something wrong.
Don Trump is a racist; but beyond that he is a religious bigot, a sexist, and a terrifying spokesperson for a very broken part of our nation.
Over the past few days since Trump’s clear rise in likelihood to secure the Republican nomination, I have watched video after video of people at Don Trump’s rallies being interviewed; and so many of them mimic his exact platform. Keep the Muslims out. Send the Mexicans back home. Build the biggest wall you can build to keep everyone out that isn’t white.
Don Trump Has No Substance
When asked about his specific proposals and plans as president, Don Trump shouts things like “make America great again” and “we’re going to help our vets and troops.” When he’s accused of just being vague and not actually talking about actual real-life plans or proposals, he fires back and says “I’m specific. I am a very specific person.” But then doesn’t go into any specificity.
His campaign is fueled by a negative policy. Negative in the sense that he focuses on how much he thinks is total and utter shit about this country right now. He’s going to get rid of the Muslims. He’s going to get rid of Obamacare. He’s going to get rid of all the behaviors and policies he thinks are wrong, and yet he never describes a) how he’ll get rid of them, and b) what he’ll replace them with.
In fact, the most detailed proposal he’s come up with was at a rally early in his campaign when he said he’d stimulate the economy by starting a war with Asian nations.
Seems like a legit policy plan.
Don Trump Is A Moron
At tonight’s debate, a question was asked regarding Trump’s tax returns. Something about Mitt Romney thinking there was something wrong with Trump’s returns, and that this was why Trump was not releasing them.
Trump was right in a lot of ways in his response; and quite frankly, he was on point this one and only time when he described how up front he has been in all of his financial disclosures.
Where he miss-stepped, though, was when he made up a word to describe something as being large. Or largely something-or-other.
Trump referred to something as “bigly.” BIGLY.
Yesterday, after the Nevada primary was declared his, Trump did say he loved the poorly educated. I can only assume he included himself in that demographic.
Don Trump’s Rise Is The Closest Political Rise Any Nation Has Come To Hitler In Modern Times
The hate speech that comes out of Don Trump’s campaign, and the idolatry of him by his supporters, is so terrifying that I am a mix of paralyzed and stupefied. Every day I read the statistics, scan over the polls, and hear all of the supporters coming out in droves, and I sit with my mouth agape that this is what our country has come to.
I remember several years ago there was a movement to raise money to do a full historical preservation of Auschwitz – the Nazi death camp that held prisoner millions of Jews during WWII. The rapid falling apart of that camp’s grounds, along with dwindling numbers of WWII survivors world-wide that could recall and share their experiences of the war, was cause for concern among many politicians and historians as to the consequence of people not being able to experience first hand, in some form or another, what happened during the Holocaust and the War.
If we don’t have these reminders, will we forget? And if we forget, could it happen again?
And now here we are in 2016, where the fear and hatred and lack of education throughout much of America is giving rise to this man who is nothing more than a Reality TV buffoon. A character of quirky faces, ridiculous hair, and scapegoating hate speech. He says he would like to punch dissenters in the face. He wants to build a wall and kick out anyone with a religion or skin color that he does not like.
And his supporters at rallies have been documented saying things like “I wish I had my gun, I want to shoot some Muslims so bad right now.”
At the very least, Don Trump is the alternative 1980s Biff Tannen when Marty goes back to find that Biff has married his mom in the alternate, fucked up universe in Back To The Future 2. The man is tyrannical, just as Don Trump no doubt will be if he gains power over this country.
For me and my family, if Don Trump is – by a long shot – actually elected President, this country will have indicated that it is full of people with whom I no longer share values. My family and I will be out, not only for that reason but for our safety.
I just don’t see Trump and his supporters to be a good kind of crowd to hang around.
So now I’ve made myself clear.
Beyond that, I could give a fuck who you vote for. On the Right Ted Cruz’s appearance is terrifying, I have a major crush on Marco Rubio, Kasich is probably the only person remotely Presidential in the bunch, and Ben Carson makes me wonder if I too could one day become a brain surgeon, if his level smarts are all it takes. And on the Bernie/Hillary side, I just wish the Democrats would shut the fuck up with the attacks on each other, vote, and move on.
But Trump…if you plan on voting for him, let’s just say our goodbyes and move on. You with your guns and your hate and your bigotry and your idolatry of a man most foul. Me with the knowledge that we’re all better off with out your type around these parts.
It all started with – I think – the Superbowl. For one, I drank too much that day. That isn’t saying much for me, because I don’t drink a lot and I also am a super-duper lightweight. Nonetheless, I drank too much because I was annoyed that NO ONE TOUCHED MY FUCKING APPETIZERS.
It was really insulting, mostly because this isn’t the first time this kind of thing has happened. On Christmas I made the only dessert and it went to BINGO with my husband’s grandparents three days later because no one wanted them. Anyway, I said I’d bring the appetizers and that I’d make this stupid stadium-themed “platter” to put them on. Then there were so many appetizers, and my “platter” was sort of out of the way and unnoticeable so tons went in the trash.
Went. In. The. TRASH.
So that started my week of being really annoyed by a lot of things. And it’s only Tuesday. Here are a few others:
1) (Monday) Coca-Cola taught me that people are still very pathetic, racist pieces of shit
I’m trying to understand how a positive and uplifting commercial about the fact that no matter what culture or heritage people attach themselves to, at the very heart of it all, Americans have an ultimate of love of this country – how that turned into a bunch of people posting on the Internet their bigoted shit about boycotting Coke products, and “speak fucking English” and all that crap.
No seriously. How is racism still happening in this country? I mean…really…
I never really got the whole thing about what language people speak anyway. What does it matter what fucking words people use to communicate? How is it more patriotic – in any way, shape, or form – to speak English?
All these awful piece of shit ignoramuses clearly forgot that: (1) America was originally inhabited by the Native Americans – who have countless different languages, and we were the original illegal immigrants speaking a foreign tongue weren’t we; and, (2) the great thing about America has always been that it is THE MOTHERFUCKING MELTING POT OF ALL THIS WONDERFUL DIVERSITY FROM ALL OVER THE FUCKING WORLD.
It made me so sad to hear and read about people’s reactions to that Coca-cola commercial, it was all I could do not to emotionally eat an entire box of Chips Ahoy.
2) (Tuesday) People are STILL letting their kids cry in restaurants and it annoys me.
Look. I’m a mom. I get it: sometimes kids act up. It’s frustrating and embarrassing when your kid – of any age – starts crying or throwing a temper tantrum in a public place. Especially when it’s over something like not getting ice-cream or some shit – ugh, that is the worst.
But I don’t cut the bullshit on this one. About 5 seconds after a tantrum starts, we get up and walk out. If we’re in a restaurant and we have to pay the bill, we stand up and immediately find the host at the door to help get the food bagged up and expedite the process.
Why? Because I’ve been to restaurants and had meals ruined – completely ruined – by a kid screaming and crying. It’s obnoxious and that some parents think it’s just a given if you go to a restaurant where children are allowed is why more and more places are opting to not allow children, ruining it for the rest of us who have manners and respect for other people.
It’s also because I want to parent without the judging and watchful eyes of all the busy-bodies sitting around me that may or may not think I’m doing it right. Sometimes (not all times – depends on the situation) I ignore tantrums, and I don’t want to hear some bitchy ladies two tables over talking about how sad they feel for my kid because I won’t pander to all the tantruming.
Most of the time I just don’t think other people should have to suffer for my failure as a parent that at some point in time has led my kid to believe that screaming and crying will result in a reward.
Today we went out to lunch and this family of about thirty-five had one baby who would not shut the fuck up with her crying, with intermittent breaks to scream “cookie” over and over again until they gave her one. Then she clearly soiled her little cookie-pants, because they changed HER GODDAMNED DIAPER IN THE RESTAURANT, LAYING DOWN IN HER STROLLER.
Right there, within view of my bleu cheese and strawberry salad.
What’s next? Will the week calm down from these petty annoyances, that always get under my skin because – well – everything gets under my skin? Or will it just continue to get worse and worse until I’ve lost it before the week’s end?
Was it really super? Not sure. Probably not in the way that all of you faithful blog followers had a “super” Sunday.
I did not watch the Super Bowl. I think it’s an atrocity to the sport of football. I think it’s a case study in overindulgent American behavior. At the Super Bowl every year, more sex trafficking – particularly that of minor girls – occurs than at any other event in America. This is common knowledge and yet no one does anything about it and I believe that the silence of millions about this is absurd. Ultimately, I am just not interested in it all – it is all contrary to who the B(itch) is, so it would make me an hypocrite to just partake in Super Bowl activities. That wouldn’t be practicing what I preach now would it? And while I do see a lot of problems in our society that the Super Bowl represents, I also don’t care if others get into it. To each his own and all that malarchy, so as long as it isn’t shoved in my face by others (which it is…) I’ll keep my mouth shut.
So would I like to share what I did for my Super Sunday? Why yes I would, thanks for asking. I actually did three of my very favorite things.
I love shopping. Retail therapy doesn’t even completely explain how much better it makes me feel to shop. Rarely when I shop do I actually buy things – shopping is great because it gives me ideas for things I want to do in the future, keeps me active by all the endless hours of walking, and when I do buy things, it gets things accomplished.
We have a birthday coming up in less than two weeks so I thought I’d do the shopping for that, and threw Easter preparations in there as well (since we’ll be out of town for the three weeks leading up until the day before the holiday). I stuck to my hometown which meant that when I went to Michael’s Art Supplies, I had to beat the traffic of the CVS, as well as the Trader Joe’s – this not as bad because of Super Bowl Sunday, but still a little crowded nonetheless.
As I walked in to the Michael’s, I was walking somewhat close to three girls that were dressed as if they were on their way to a swanky nightclub – walking into the CVS drugstore next door to where I was going. I admit that I eavesdropped – wondering where they were going – and was a little dismayed by what I heard. Apparently these three classy ladies were dressed in nightclub gear to go whoring around the local BJ’s. You know, the restaurant and bar that claims its pizza to be “Chicago-style” when it is nothing of the sort? They were going to BJ’s to “hook up” with some innocent sports fans there to watch the Super Bowl. How do I know you ask, faithful blog followers? One sentence from the ho whose big bubble ass was hanging out the bottom of her miniskirt: “oh yeah, you know we should grab some condoms while we’re here ’cause you know ‘dem boys never have ‘dem.”
My father is a sports historian. I’ve mentioned this before, but he’s written four books, multiple encyclopedia and academic journal entries, and countless newspaper articles on all things sports. He hates the NFL – particularly the Super Bowl – for what it represents. To try and sway me not to watch (as if I needed swaying), he invited me to a free lunch. So (of course) I ate big and thus wasn’t too hungry later in the day when the Super Bowl madness was over and it was time for dinner.
My husband stayed home and watched the Super Bowl while I lunched with daddykins and shopped my heart out alongside those tainted whores but I absolutely refused to cook him the typical Super Bowl food – not only because I was not interested in the game but because nachos, hot dogs, tri tip sandwiches, and buffalo wings by the dozen are not exactly what I would call a “light dinner.”
So I made BBQ chicken with peas. Light. Healthy. Low fat. An amazing alternative to the Taco Bell 10 Pack.
Little Miss Sunshine
No matter how many times I watch that movie, it never gets old. I just love it – for its message, its humor and satire, and its parallels to one of my favorite books ever. After a long day of shopping and lunching, it seemed like the best thing to do. But while we watched it, I was astonished to learn that my husband had never read The Grapes of Wrath (which Little Miss Sunshine carries many parallels to).
This news rocked my very foundation; albeit, not for the reason you might think. While it is sort of dismaying to know that someone can get through primary, as well as a college, education without reading the book, my foundation was rocked simply because this imprints a taint of sorts on my theory that my husband is a hipster. He still swears by Pitchfork, thinks he has a far superior taste in just about everything than everyone else, and drinks PBR – but to not have read The Grapes of Wrath is almost blasphemy to anyone in the hipster community.
So was my Sunday a Super Sunday? I’m sure it wasn’t by most people’s standards because it didn’t involve six pounds of nachos with a few cases of Bud Light Lime – consumed whilst scratching my ass, belching, and updating my Facebook page minute by minute with Bowl game details as if there weren’t already fifty other updates there waiting for everyone to read.
Despite all that, my Sunday was pretty super to me.
I’m a real negative-nelly sometimes, I know… I am constantly posting about things I hate and reasons I’m annoyed. But this is a B(itch)Log, right? Right. Plus, as painful as it may sometimes be for you, faithful blog followers, to tolerate my rants day after day, after day, you know that (in at least most cases), I’m right. As much as it may seem a bit complain-y, and a bit over-the-top at times, all I’m doing is saying things I know you all are thinking. Here’s one of those things that I know I’m right about, that I’m sure at least some of you are thinking: reasons for avoiding the 4th of July.
REASON #1 FOR AVOIDING THE 4TH OF JULY: DRUNK DRIVERS KILL
Unless you want to die prematurely by either (a) being t-boned by a drunk driver; or (b) crashing into flames, drunk yourself, going out for the 4th of July should be avoided.
No matter how much self-control you have, you cannot avoid a can of Coors, or a red-white-and-blue martini, if you go out of the house. And even if you don’t drink, you still cannot avoid the affects of such drinks, since 8 out of 10 people driving the weekend of the 4th will have at least one alcoholic beverage flowing through their veins.
REASON #2 FOR AVOIDING THE 4TH OF JULY: FIREWORKS ARE FOR HILLBILLIES
While there is something spectacular about fireworks over Lake Michigan in Chicago, or the nightly show at Disneyland, there is absolutely nothing spectacular about a bunch of hillbillies shooting off bottle rockets and M80s in their front yard, sometimes pointing them at each other.
True story: a few years ago the neighbors down the street from my father’s house were shooting so many fireworks at the neighbor’s cars and each other that the police were called. When the police got out of their car, they were chased away by a large band of drunken, illegal fireworks-users. Two hours later, someone was shot in the eye with a firework and she was blinded in that eye permanently. There is absolutely nothing beautiful about explosives that are set off by anyone other than a professional.
REASON #3 FOR AVOIDING THE 4TH OF JULY: BEER GUZZLING, ILLEGAL FIREWORKS, BAR-B-QUEING, AND SCREAMING “WOOOOOOO! AMERICA, F**K YEAH!!” WAS NOT WHERE OUR FOUNDING FATHERS WERE GOING
As fun as it might be to imagine Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin doing beer bongs and shooting explosives at each other, while George Washington throws some burgers and snausages on the grill, this really is not what our founding fathers were going for.
While the freedom to explode our arms off if we want to, and to guzzle booze until we slip into a comma, might be a necessary consequence of our freedom from the British powers that once were, this is really not what the 4th of July is about. Strikingly, Associated Press reported a few years ago that only 74% of Americans polled knew what the 4th of July is actually about, with an astonishing 6% of the remaining people thinking we separated from a power other than the British. Possibly those snausages are clogging our brain power too.
So you see, it really is better if we all just avoid the 4th of July altogether. Rather than risk your life and limbs, stay in and have a nice, healthy meal and a glass of wine. Watch a special on what the founding fathers were actually fighting foron the History Channel. Enjoy the extra day off work to catch up on housework, your Tivo, or that good book you’ve been meaning to read. Since I know most of you won’t take heed of this advise, have a safe 4th of July … if you have enough fingers left to log onto your computer come Tuesday, I’ll see you then!