Category Archives: Stranger Than Fiction

Don’t Un-Friend. Stand Together!

There’s a lot of chitter-chatter online about the protests that are breaking out in many major cities across our vast nation. And, I’ll admit, burning flags does seem a tad extreme… not to mention the “Not My President” signs. After all, Trump won fair and square, right?!

Love Trumps Hate, San Francisco Pride Parade 2016

For those of us who didn’t vote for Trump, we are still licking our wounds and pulling our jaws up from the astonishment that a person in America could use the type of hate language he used and still be supported by half of our country.

Half.

Another whole article will be written about how the Dems didn’t do their jobs to earn the mid-America vote. The message has been received and things must change. We hear you loud and clear. For today, I’m focused on something else…

I have friends, good friends, who are Trump supporters. I sincerely pray that this issue will not divide the love and relationships we share. I don’t want to be un-friended. These people have been by my side through health issues, financial issues, family struggles… they show up to events for my kids, attend milestone celebrations, and are a safe and loving community. Simply stated, I want to grow old laughing and cutting it up just like we’ve done for many years.

hires

I’m trying really hard not to succumb to pack mentality. I know that participating in a losing battle of “we vs. they” will end badly for everyone. There has to be common ground. And pretending nothing is happening and avoiding the elephant in the room isn’t going to do anyone any good.

There’s so much to consider. Let’s face it, a blog post is too short to attempt any great feat. So, I’ll focus on two issues that have pulled at my heartstrings today.

First, our children have seen a man elected as President who said horrific things about almost every minority group. Unapologetically. We are told that we shouldn’t be upset about the Trump comments and how they affect our children because we can’t rely on the government to raise our kids.

Second, the protests. Are the protestors overreacting? “Eventually, they’ll have to stand down, right? I mean, how bad can it be?!” This has become the question of the day.

Regarding the kids… It’s true, our government cannot be held responsible for raising our children. It’s up to us to raise our kids and teach them right from wrong. That being said, when the newly elected leader of the most powerful country in the world is not held to task over his comments (we all know what they were) it shows our children that it’s ok to make fun of groups of people who are different (and perceived less) than us.

Freedom of speech concept

By taking no action, we become bullying bystanders like the kids on the playground who didn’t throw rocks but watched the whole thing happen. Not acceptable. Because it’s our responsibility to raise our kids WE MUST STAND UP AGAINST THE HATE RHETORIC whether it’s about Mexicans, Muslims, Fat People, Women, African Americans, LGBT, Special Needs, or any other segment of human beings who are different from us.

History teaches us that bad things happen if we don’t speak up for those who are pushed to the margins.

Living in a place of BOTH/AND is the only safe space…

Our government cannot raise our kids AND we have a responsibility to call out unacceptable and dangerous comments and actions when we know they are happening. Turning a blind eye on what we watched unfold is not an acceptable go-forward strategy.

As the days, weeks, and months unfold, please consider listening with a close ear to the words spoken by the leaders of our county. Whether or not you voted for Trump, we can agree to stand up and speak out against hate rhetoric. Our children are watching and are learning, from us, how to play in the sandbox.

Now, on to the protests…

These aren’t just small groups of confused individuals without a real cause. These are citizens who represent the other half of America who fear that a Trump presidency will impact their freedom of speech; equal pay for equal work; women’s health rights; environmental issues; LGBT; and basic human rights for every race, gender, and religion at the collective table of the United States of America.

Trump promised to be President to all people. However, before tossing the protesting out as malarkey, please consider what Donald J. Trump did within a week of the election…

He appointed a known white supremacist and leader of the alt-right movement, Steve Bannon, to be his chief strategist and senior counselor. Don’t take my word for it, please research it for yourself:

Fox News: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/11/13/trump-to-name-priebus-chief-staff-bannon-senior-counselor.html

NPR: http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/11/13/501937200/trump-taps-reince-priebus-as-chief-of-staff-steve-bannon-as-chief-strategist

Think Progress: https://thinkprogress.org/trump-chief-strategist-ad23b5c166f6#.3z28yr5at

If you are still reading… Thanks for not giving up on me yet.

WHY WOULD A HIGHLY CONTROVERSIAL NEWLY-ELECTED PRESIDENT-ELECT MAKE THIS ANNOUNCEMENT WITHIN ONE WEEK OF HIS ELECTION?

What message is this sending?

Can you see now why there is protesting in the streets, folks? The fear is real. When people of color and diverse backgrounds hear that a white supremacist has been appointed, their fears become a reality. This is scary. Whether or not you voted for Trump is no longer the issue. And, we cannot be bystanders and simply watch hate unfold.

Please try to understand why people are gathering to collectively share their concerns in a public forum. Public demonstration has lead to many great changes over the course of our American history, and folks are acting within their constitutional right to let their opinions be known. (Granted, there is a huge difference between peaceful protest and dangerous rioting. The latter is unacceptable and should not be tolerated or encouraged. At the time of this writing, riots were the exception, not the norm.)

Please pay attention to what is going on in Trump’s cabinet and let your representatives know that this is an atrocity. At this point, he is actually fueling the anger and legitimizing the fear that so many in our country are taking to the streets in protest.

Good people on all sides of the political spectrum must find common ground. We can debate guns and abortion later… but for today, I think we can agree that we must take a stand against hate and let our collective concerns be known.

Standing up for unity in a divided nation.

Don't boo. Vote.

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© 2016, The Musing Maven, all rights reserved.

Trump Is President

The results are in… Trump is president. I’ve had about 30 hours to process what this means, and how it impacts my dream of America.

Having said that, this post is dedicated to my Trump supporting friends who have so aptly reminded me that, as Americans, we have the right to vote how we wish. I’ve read many Facebook posts regarding “the votes are counted… let’s move on with life… don’t take it so personal… pull up your panties and move on.”

American thumb up

At the same time, this post is also dedicated to my friends who vehemently oppose everything that Trump stands for. You know, stuff that wasn’t spun by the media, but actually spoken from his own lips?? I won’t waste an ounce of white space on those comments. I’ll let you run an internal movie replaying his “greatest hits” on humanity. (Read: hits on humanity)

To My Trump-Voting Friends:

I say, you are right, in part. It is time for me to pull up my big girl panties. And, move on, I will. But it won’t be “business as usual.” No, too much is at stake. What I say to you is this, I accept (don’t read or assume that means “respect”) your vote. I accept the results of this democratic process.

After reciting several iterations of the serenity prayer, I realize that I must accept what is outside of my control. I can’t control this outcome.

So…

My panties are pulled up, and I’m poised in an acceptance mode. Do you like what you see? Do these panties make my butt look big? Is my hair ok? Do I look better from this angle? Good. Good. Glad we were able to settle that.

2016-11-10-10-12-23

Collage of my personal metaphor for “Big Girl Panties”

As I stand in “Big Girl Panty” mode, please understand that I’ve accepted it. Well, I’m in the process of learning to accept it. Give me time.

I’m not a football girl, but I expect it will take me at least as long to come to terms with this as it does for fans of the losing team to shake off their pain and anger after a big Super Bowl loss. My team lost. Big. As in, we got our asses kicked. And, quite honestly, it hurts.

You voted.

But…

screenshot-2016-11-10-10-47-12
I mentioned that I’m moving on… the American way… but that doesn’t mean it will be “business as usual.” In the past, I’ve kind of kept my political voice quiet when it came to social media or in “mixed” company. I accept am working on accepting your Trump vote. I’m also warming up my voice. That being said, please expect to hear my opinions on things like:

  • Freedom of Speech (for starters)
  • Women’s Rights (that makes me pro-choice, in case you are wondering)
  • LGBTQ (XYZ123…as the list grows) Rights AND Marriage Equality (yes, I firmly believe that two consenting adults have a right to officially proclaim their love and have it recognized by my government, insurance, and community. And, I’m even ok with PDA’s. If I can lean into my husband’s shoulder at a movie, I strongly feel that the gay couple behind me should have the same right.)
  • 2nd Amendment Rights – in line with where we are TODAY vs. when muskets were the protection weaponry of choice. Gun rights don’t silence my right to speak. Don’t try to tread on my pen and paper, either!

These are the quick highlights.

The government now bleeds red… red coming out of the Senate. Red coming out of the, wherever… Oops, I promised I wouldn’t waste space… must.move.on.

To My Friends Who Vehemently Oppose Everything That Trump Represents:

I implore you, take the time needed to lick your wounds… drown your sorrows… armchair quarterback for a bit… complain loudly, stomp your feet, shake the rafters, eat gallons of ice cream, and cry yourself to sleep in the fetal position. Wimpy Teen

I’ve read many Facebook posts over the past two days from strong friends who are deeply shaken. Many are saying that they are pulling off of social media. The pain is just too deep. Again, do what you must to take care of yourself. After all, this shit just got real.

Then, as you are willing and able, please join me. Let’s start the “Big Girl Panty Regime” where we join, united in our unending fight to maintain the liberties that legions of women and men of all races have fought hard to achieve. Talk to your sisters and brothers who are united in this voice. Get off the couch, write your representatives, post your opinions on social media, gather, march… If leading these efforts isn’t your forte, consider looking for organized efforts that you can join.

We have many things of which to be thankful. In fact, I’ve got 14,000 of them in front of me…

2016-11-10-11-01-49

That’s right… I’ve got fourteen thousand… and Trump aint gonna be one of them!

With panties pulled high, I’m warming up my voice and figuring out how I can get to work in this great democracy. The United States of America.

The results are in, and we have our work to do.

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© 2016, The Musing Maven, all rights reserved.

Life As We DON’T Know It

I heard the funniest comedian on the radio recently… Of course, his name escapes me, but I literally found myself laughing out loud while driving alone in broad daylight.

Laugh out loud

The skit went something like this…
[East coast male voice…]

“Do you ever wonder what life would be like without the institute of marriage? I mean, let’s face it, it’s big business. In a world where more than 50% of marriages end in divorce, is there another way? And, I have to ask myself where it all started.

If there was no marriage, here’s what an innovator might do:

[Remember while you read that it’s a male comedian w/ east coast accent the whole time… he’s telling what the conversation might be like]

MAN: Hey, we’ve been hanging out a lot and I like it.

WOMAN: Yeah, me too.
    
MAN: So, I think I wanna go out on a limb and ask you if we can do this thing for the rest of our lives. You know, until we die.

WOMAN: Ok?

MAN: Come here. Put this on.

WOMAN:  Why?

MAN: Because I want you to wear a long white sheet that costs as much as a used car.

WOMAN: Who’s that?
    
MAN: It’s a priest.

WOMAN: Why is he here?

MAN: He’s gonna witness this agreement you are making… that you agree to stay with me until we’re dead.  Here, take this.

WOMAN: What is it?

MAN: It’s a gold ring. I want you to wear it so that everyone who sees it will know that you made a binding agreement and will stick with me until you die.

WOMAN: Why are we doing this?


MAN: It’s good for our taxes.

WOMAN: Okay?  So, what’s that?

MAN: It’s a cake. With plastic dolls… that look like us… Wanna taste it?

Anyway, the skit went on for a while longer. What I enjoyed most was how this comedian challenged his audience to consider, if even for a moment, some of the traditions that our culture blindly participates in. So much of our everyday life is simply out of habit… What would life be like if we weren’t on auto pilot checking things off our proverbial to-do lists?
Pink Panther
While I’m on the topic…The Book of Mormon came to Denver last month and I had the awesome pleasure of attending one of the sold-out shows. On the surface, the message is an over-the-top judgement on the Mormon faith. However, if you look past the foul language and 2 foot foam phallic symbols (not to mention a Mormon elder doing unconventional things to Hitler during his visit to hell…) Anyway, if you look past all the pomp and circumstance, what you have is the story of humanity…

We are all trying to make sense out of this thing called life. Danger seems to lurk in the places where we stop asking questions…

Don't Ask Questions
Side Note: Just to clarify… I fully embrace marriage – after 21 years toting around the ball and chain, I feel entitled to enjoy a good chuckle at the expense of an age-old tradition…

So, Thanksgiving is this week. For many generations now, our people have celebrated by gorging on turkey, potatoes, corn casserole, rolls and pumpkin pie (of course, somewhere in the 60’s green bean casserole worked its way on to our dining room tables).

I’m feeling all mushy and thankful inside.

Pass the yams, please!

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© 2013, The Musing Maven, all rights reserved.