Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Aurora Theater Shooting -- one year later

There are going to be a lot of people weighing in on the shooting by James Holmes one year ago. Here's my take on it. I think that people have a need to come together on anniversaries like this to remember those who were lost. I also think that people have a need to commemorate those who helped the survivors. These are good things, but they don't always need to be huge events that draw protesters as this one has done.

I do NOT believe it is appropriate to have a pro-gun protest close to where 19 people were killed by someone who is taking an insanity defense at his trial for the crime. I agree that the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution allows us to own guns, but I don't see a lot of "well-regulated militias" around these days because the duties those militias used to serve have been taken over by our policing forces and organizations like the National Guard. I also agree that it is their 1st Amendment right to be there is absolute.

There is a difference in my mind between appropriate and inappropriate timing and location of protests of ANY form. I know that there are people who would disagree with me about WHAT is inappropriate, and that is their right as well.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Texas, Ohio, and my daughter's rights

I know I haven't written much in this particular blog for a long time, but that is because I was focusing more on my blog that is more religiously based. However, the issues surrounding the stripping away of rights from women in favor of the unborn (and not yet viable) is just a symptom of a greater problem in my eyes. The problem is one of systematically trying to CONTROL women through their reproductive systems.

This is a battle that has been fought before and for well more than a century. This is a battle that as women, we CANNOT afford to lose. Yes, I freely admit to being a housewife and mother, but that is because of CHOICE and I refuse to see the ability to choose differently be systematically stripped away from my daughter.

THIS is one of the reasons I find the decision recently made in Ohio to be so abhorrent and am watching what is going on in Texas with both a sense of growing hope AND growing dread. I am also glad to live in a state where more progressive values hold sway in the halls of power......

Friday, November 16, 2012

Open letter to the Republican Party

Please distance yourselves from those who would demonize a portion of our population, no matter what that portion is. Please distance yourselves from the idea that when a woman is pregnant that the fetus has more rights than the mother. Please distance yourselves from the idea that "One nation under God" means the Christian/Jewish/Muslim god.

Please embrace the fact that people of all sexual orientations should have the same legal protections. Please embrace the idea that women deserve equal pay for equal work and that staying home to care for a young child by yourself IS work. Please embrace the idea that we should be in-sourcing instead of out-sourcing things like call centers and manufacturing. Please embrace the idea that we should be spending money on our own infrastructure instead building infrastructure in other countries because we have attacked them. And finally PLEASE stop being the party of the rich and return to true conservatism in the vein of Eisenhower instead of the Randian policies started under Ronald Reagan.

A mommy 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

In Denver, When Are Election Ads Too Much of a Good Thing?

 I'm a 45-year old housewife, and I've always been one of the first to say that elections are important.
But sometimes it seems the political ads have taken over the airwaves in Colorado. As one of the swing states that Mitt Romney and President Obama hope to carry in November, Colorado is seeing both candidates, as well as various special-interest groups, flood the airwaves with their versions of reality.
Just when you think you are getting back to the show you have been watching (even the news), there always seems to be another advertisement.

In fact, the political advertising has overtaken the amount of other ads (except on PBS and similar stations) by more than 2-to-1, by my count. I understand there is a need to put your message before the voters, but I feel it can be taken to excess -- especially with the wave of negative ads that have been produced for the current election.

Even though I personally have made up my mind as to whom I will be voting for, the amount of ads could be confusing to someone who still is undecided. There is sometimes too much of a "good thing" after all.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Joe Biden and Paul Ryan debate

I think it was Abe Lincoln who said that a man should debate as if he were fighting a swarm of bees. If that is the case, I think that Lincoln would have approved of how Joe Biden debated on October 11, 2012. He was energetic and animated -- and did not hesitate to call a spade a spade. Although he never SAID that Paul Ryan was lying, he certainly implied it several times. And fact checkers determined that he was the more truthful of the candidates.

Although I might otherwise vote for a third-party (Green) candidate on various issues, Joe Biden made me proud to say that I am casting my vote for the Obama/Biden ticket this year to prevent the Romney/Ryan ticket from getting into the White House.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Yesterday, we were ALL Greeks!

On this particular day, as I sit here on my computer remembering the calls for a “Day of Solidarity” with the Greeks who are protesting stringent austerity measures I also look at that day as a day where, intentionally or not, we also were called to honor the Greek Goddess Hestia, who is commonly thought of as only the Goddess of Hearth and Home instead of a Goddess of Community. In another blog ( , I have called her a goddess involved with social activism. And it is in this spirit I can say with happiness that “Yesterday We Were All Greeks”
Yes, home is where Hestia dwells. But, does that home have to be in a fixed location or can our hearts be our hearths as well? In my personal experience as a (currently) “homeless” person the ‘home’ referred to does not have to be in any specific place. These experiences have helped me appreciate that the realm of the Flame-Hearted Hestia is not and cannot be contained in the structure of a set ‘place’ although most of us do equate to a fixed place to return to each night. But, as the Warm One is more than just a Goddess of place, she is what gives structure to what we see as our home, not the physical building. In this way she shows herself to be a Goddess of Society as well.

The Occupy Movement in the US and growing revolutions around the world show us the power of people in community. Sadly, we are still struggling with the balance between that community, with its responsibilities, and ourselves as individuals striving for the things that ‘profit’ us (however we define them). This is a far from painless struggle as establishing or changing community values is very like the process of a child being born. It is our society being born, or at least born anew. The peaceful Hestia partners again with Ares in the 21st century as they did in the 20th and hopefully the results will be as strong and long-lasting.

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Homeless Pagan – Doubly Invisible

Two groups of people that are generally “invisible” in our society are the homeless who DO NOT conform to the “bag lady and bum” stereotype and those of us who follow non-Abrahamic faiths (aka “Pagans”). In both cases, at least a portion of the reason is discomfort with what is ‘different’ or ‘other’ as well as the inability of some people to see themselves in the position of that ‘different’ person.

This has led to an uncomfortable realization for me. Because I am BOTH, I am doubly invisible.  Heck, truth be told, I might as well not exist at all in the minds of many people. Not only do I not “look” homeless but I also do not fit the appearance of what many people think a “Pagan” should look like. I don’t go around with brightly dyed hair in a color that nature never intended a human to wear, nor do I sport a lot of piercings, tattoos or pentacle jewelry. I confess to having a single tattoo and pierced ears, but in our society that is not all that uncommon.  If anything, I look like what had once been described as “a hippy soccer mom”.

I sit in a wi-fi hot spot with my family’s laptop answering email, waiting for a game to download to the computer and typing this blog and it strikes me how ‘normal’ what I am doing is – even after I have just finished a survey about Pagans and how our needs are or are not being met in society. But, being Pagan is not ‘mainstream’ despite how much we might wish otherwise and I see problems for those of us who fit both categories from the title of this blog.

The current field of Republican candidates does not inspire in me any great confidence that the already fragile social safety net will not be further eroded should they be elected to public office and as I am currently homeless I am forced to depend on that net. The shelters that are available are almost always run by one faith-based organization or another – and that faith is almost always Christian. It makes the non-Christian sometimes feel like they are not important in the scheme of things (and numerically Pagans ARE statistically insignificant enough that most people don’t think of us when thinking “religious sensitivity”).  Even among the Pagan community, my particular faith is a minority one – as a former room-mate once (cruelly) put it “a fringe-group of a fringe-group”. Amidst the growing recognition of Wicca as a faith practice, many people forget that Wiccans are not the only “Pagans” in this country or even that anything other than Wicca EXISTS.

When you might as well not exist BOTH because of your faith and because of your economic situation, it is disquieting and probably will be the topic of other blogs when I am no longer homeless and have a stable base for my more political writings.