Loyalty is a Funny Word

What is loyalty? The definition of loyalty is as follows (from dictionary.com):

noun, plural loyalties.
1. the state or quality of being loyal; faithfulness to commitments or obligations.
2. faithful adherence to a sovereign, government, leader, cause, etc.
3. an example or instance of faithfulness, adherence, or the like:

a man with fierce loyalties.

The concept of loyalty is pretty simple to understand. If you are loyal to someone, you dedicate time and energy to be there for that person. You consider things based on the best interest of the person you are loyal to. A person really is only as good as their loyalty.

What inspired this? President Trump’s Twitter, of course. He tweeted out in one of his latest Twitter fits about Republican loyalty, saying “Some Republicans were loyal”. What is that supposed to mean? It means being loyal to the party, of course. This is the big problem here. Politicians do tend to be loyal to the party, on both sides of the aisle. However, should a politician be loyal to a party or the constituents that put them into office?

They need to be loyal to the American people. They need to not just be loyal to the people that voted them in; they need to consider the needs and wants of all of their constituents. They (We) are your bosses. We determine if you get another term in office. We are the ones that you should be concerned with, not your pockets or your party. So when a Republican stands up against a bill, maybe it’s a terrible bill. Maybe they realize that they are going to hurt more of their constituents than the current option. But by doing what’s best for their people is not being disloyal, they are doing their jobs.

The Republican party really had around 7 years to come up with something great. If they worked together for 7 years to create something amazing, this would not be happening right now. They would pass a bill because they wouldn’t be rushing it. This seems like when you are sitting in class and the teacher says “Don’t forget, you have your 10 page report due in 3 weeks” and you ignore it until they remind you “Don’t forget, your paper is due tomorrow”. Sometimes you get lucky and turn in something passable. Other times, you get the dreaded “See me after class”.

Is Obamacare perfect? Not even close, but name some bill that is. In some places, rates have risen and that’s a fact. In some places, they may not get access to some of the best choices as far as insurance plans go. The idea of mandating insurance seems logical, especially if that money goes back into helping to sustain programs like Medicaid and Medicare. The idea that insurance companies need to offer pediatric dental care in addition to medical care is great because not everyone can afford dental insurance for their kids. Not having to pay co-pays for yearly checkups encourages people to go to the doctor because they don’t have to worry about where the money is coming from. As much as there is that is good about the bill, there are a lot of things that could be a lot better. America deserves better. And this bill is not it.

Politicians really need to learn their place and where their loyalties should be. Democrats are not only creating laws and bills for Democrats and the same goes the other way around. There needs to be compromise and there needs to be collaboration. Without either, this country is only going to continue on this path of divisiveness that is only going to break us.

Advertisements

When You Don’t Agree

Things seem to only be getting worse these days. Rather than reasonable discussions, if someone doesn’t automatically agree with another person they are labeled terms like “Libtard” or some other term that really should not be in existence. Being a liberal does not make you an idiot automatically, much like being a Republican does not make you a racist. There are idiots and racists on both sides; I assure you this is a fact. There are a lot of idiots everywhere and political affiliation has nothing to do with that. There are a lot of smart and talented people who are Republican as there are Democrats and Independents.

With the weather, the blog was delayed for a week but it turns out there is nothing new. America is growing even more divided and facts are few and far between. All there is right now is speculation, conspiracy theories, and mudslinging that everyone should be ashamed of. A person thinks that if you feel that instead of cutting free lunch programs (much like my school system offers, though they also offer free breakfast), that maybe the president should take less weekend trips to his Florida estate. Another person says that person is a liberal idiot who doesn’t know anything. Who is right? One could argue that the person who spells out facts and numbers would be right and the one who automatically turns to insulting the other is wrong. But it doesn’t matter.

Maybe this is done on purpose. Maybe the political parties want us to be divided and disagree so fervently that they can more easily control us. They each have their own media that brainwashes the masses, telling them that they cannot trust any other news source. If you turn to Fox News, you’re just a dumb conservative that follows blindly. Watching MSNBC? You are nothing more than a lemming. There has to be a reason for this and I will resign to there being some grand conspiracy that is going on. Maybe that television show “Braindead” had it right.

If that is the case, we are quickly falling into the hands of the people that want to control through a level of anarchy and discord that can only be achieved by not condemning this stubbornness to have a rational discussion among adults. I was always taught that people turn to insults in arguments because they have no valid point or because they are wrong and want to distract you from that.

We are better than this. We are the country that once stood proud and tall and those days are sadly no longer. We are being ruined from within and we are just sitting idly by while it happens. Don’t let anyone take the facts away from you. We are still a free country and you should do your research to decide things for yourself. The minute you let anyone else tell you what to believe, you have given in.

A Love of Facts

That is really what is missing in the world today: facts. With outrageous “news” organizations like InfoWars, BreitBart, Occupy Democrats, and the many other so-called news organizations out there, people don’t bother with facts. When I read a headline that strikes my interest on any topic, I immediate Google the information and search to see if any other reputable news sites have any information on the topic. If not, I assume it was just a fictitious story that was created for the sole purpose of pandering to their masses or to incite some fake outrage. If I do find that the story is something that is real, I read several different websites (CNN, Fox News, local news websites, etc.) to find out everything about it. I’m smart; I know each of these organizations are going to toss me an angle rather than the whole story, purposely omitting something to twist it to match their own agenda. Then I decide for myself, as a free-thinking individual what is likely the facts because I don’t trust anyone to just tell me what facts are. Everyone has an agenda.

When the whole thing erupted with Hillary, I was skeptical of the timing and wondered if it was more political than facts. Then the facts came out and you think, “well, that was dumb of her” and “how is she able to run for president after doing something that sketchy”. I like facts. Facts proved that she did do something wrong, whether it was in the gray area or fully illegal, she definitely did something wrong.

If you are going to rattle off any type of accusation, you better have proof. You cannot just say something like “Obama wiretapped me, Breitbart said so” and have that be a fact. You can however say, “I was wiretapped, as president I have definitive proof right here”, then show us the results of the wiretapping. Isn’t it as easy as that? Unless there is no wiretapping and he is just trying to divert the attention from the mess that is going on right now. If there are facts, they need to be released to the public so they can actually be outraged and then address how to handle what happened by legal action.

I have a big mistrust for people who just rattle off information for the purpose of outrage without backing it up with anything. Facts are everything and every day, facts are becoming less important to our daily lives. People just follow along like sheep, not caring about those pesky little details other people call “facts” (or alternative facts, as some will point out). The reason this still goes on is because we allow it to. Don’t just follow; educate yourself. Read as much news from the more reputable of websites as possible and please, please do not just read one website and call yourself educated. Opinion pieces are often masked by “reporting the news” rather than straight up facts. That is why it is so important to read everything.

Politics Making You Sad? Me Too…

The political atmosphere of your location should never get to a point where you feel defeated. It should inspire you to be the change that you want to see, in a peaceful and respectful manner of course. But, it is just making me sad and I almost feel like there is no point in fighting for what I believe in. I do feel defeated and I feel a little angry about that. But before you start judging me and berating me, hear me out.

I said it the minute the president was elected. I told my son “You can agree with his politics or not, but he is the president and that commands respect.” He looked at me, “But they never really respected Obama.” I nodded and I replied, “It is your job to be better than that.” As much as I feel angry about some of the things going on (among the biggest gripe, our Secretary of Education), I still stand by that. The title of president does command respect and there is a respectful way of disagreeing with him that does not include rioting, refusing to acknowledge him during a congressional speech (or maybe not even showing up) or trauma levels of therapy. Those things take away from the problems going on, causing people to focus on “babies” rather than the real issues that people have concerns about.

So why am I sad? The biggest reason is because there is no real place for political discussion today. People immediately ignore the other side because they are steadfast in their beliefs and you can either accept that the relationship is over. Whatever happened to the ability to debate using facts and logic to point out sides and then shaking hands afterwards? The answer is people are brainwashed by mainstream media on both sides and choose to just follow along rather than educate themselves. This causes misplaced passions and a “It’s me or them” mentality that is actually going to ruin our country. In fact, we are already going down this slippery slope and as much as you want to blame one side for it both share an equal amount of blame in this matter. You should be pissed off about this because this tells them that you are idiots that they can turn into their little puppets. We are not puppets; we are Americans.

Civil disobedience has been a staple in our history for decades. This is how change happens. Without this, the Civil Rights movement would have never succeeded and women would not be able to vote still. Now anyone who practices any level of civil disobedience respectfully is referred to as a “snowflake” or a “liberal”. Since when did your political affiliation become a slur rather just your political leaning? Sure, there are a lot of people who are not being respectful about it and they should be called out for it. But those who are doing it right, with marches to raise awareness for their causes or running rallies and raising money for charities that they believe in, why are they getting slammed for that?

This is exactly what is supposed to make America great: diversity. Everyone is supposed to be able to have their own belief system and that should be okay to have. But these days, people are judged unfairly because of what they believe in. If you think everyone should have the right to get married, you are a bleeding heart liberal. If you are worried about losing your healthcare or your public schools, you are a whiny snowflake. Rather than hearing each other out, everyone is dismissed because Fox News/MSNBC/CNN told me that you were wrong so you’re just wrong without showing you facts about how you’re wrong. And if someone dares shows actual facts? Fake news.

That can make a person not want to fight anymore. How can you fight if you are just going to be dismissed as an idiot or a wuss because you don’t accept your fate? Fate is not set in stone and we can change the outcome. But for now, are country is being torn apart because no one wants to admit that both sides have very deep flaws that really need to be discussed openly and without judgement or anger.

It’s All About the Bathrooms

There is a hot topic that revolves around bathrooms. No, it has nothing to do with which preference you have when it comes to how you put the toilet paper on the roll or the age-long argument about placing a new roll of toilet paper rather than just putting it on the empty one. First off all, in my house my husband has a preference whereas I just put the roll on any way I feel like because it doesn’t matter (scandalous). Secondly, my husband knows better and will put the nearly empty roll on top of the new one that he just put on the roll. There is no debate about this in our household.

The bathroom controversy that I am speaking about is where transgender people are concerned. Some people feel as though for the safety of everyone, people must use the bathroom according to their birth gender. So a transgender female in a dress using a urinal is not going to cause any problems, such as slurs and potential assaults in the bathroom. However, that same person in the ladies room would be likely to abuse a female child easier with lax rules on this topic? Do I get the argument?

If someone wants to assault a child in a bathroom, they already do it. Strict laws prohibiting people who are not “born female” are not going to stop it from happening. It’s really the same logic that is applied to gun control. Why should there be any gun control if the person is going to find another way to obtain the gun to cause harm? The fact is that there are some bad people out there and they are going to do what they want regardless of any laws out there. (Spoiler alert: I’m pretty sure there are laws that prohibit anyone from sexually assaulting another person.) That is a sad reality of the world we live in. Bad people are just going to do bad things and laws do not prevent this. Stricter punishments do. Though we all know how harshly rapists are punished: 2 months probation and gets to go to the college of their dreams without their lives being destroyed as they destroyed their victims lives.

I have a great idea. How about we make transgender bathrooms that are both separate but equal to the “normal people” bathrooms? That has worked out so well for us in the past, why wouldn’t it work now? (Since sarcasm doesn’t always translate well in text, I will clearly state that this statement was dripping in sarcasm.) You are not going to know if a transgender person is in the stall next to you. They just want to go to the bathroom, hopefully wash their hands, and leave just like you do. They are not stalking you in the bathroom, hoping to catch a glimpse of you. If someone is, they are a sexual predator and they should be arrested. For instance, Ben Roethlisberger was accused of sexually assaulting a woman in the ladies room and he is not a transgender female. If you want a scary fact, look at the high numbers of the transgender community that have been sexually assaulted (and even murdered afterwards). Again, bad people are just going to do bad things.

The transgender community is the new minority that people need to fight for. People do not understand this community and let’s face it: people are afraid of things that they don’t understand. I cannot stand by and watch a community of people have to struggle for the basic freedoms that everyone else has. Did we not learn anything from the Civil Rights movements of the 50’s and 60’s? Why do we always have to fight for these things? I am a proud ally and others should stand up for those who can’t. We cannot let an entire community struggle with the rights that they were born with as an American citizen and to allow that to happen is truly wrong. Everyone had to deal with this struggle in their history, so we should know better by now.

So, That Happened

For those people that may live under a rock, or are just in extreme denial, the seemingly impossible happened: Donald Trump is our newest president. I had difficulty sleeping as a result of worrying about the outcome. Not because I like Hillary or even voted for her, but because I was terrified at the prospect of a Trump presidency. And no, I don’t feel as though I wasted my vote on a 3rd party candidate nor do I feel guilty about it considering the outcome. Allow me to explain myself, and do read until the end before you judge me. Also, this is all I have left to say about this election.

First off, here is why I’m afraid: As a mother of a child who is mixed race, I’m worried that hate speech will have an effect on his life. I am afraid that the climate of hate will cause him to be so bullied that he can’t deal with it especially if he never does outgrow his development issues. I worry for my loved ones in the LGBT community and what could happen with a conservative Supreme Court. Will gay marriage be reversed? Will the transgender community never get the freedom everyone else has to be who they really are and live their lives as such? Why do guns have more rights than the body of a woman? These are all things that do worry me.

Then, I have more selfish concerns. I have benefited from Obamacare. I don’t have to pay for a prescription that I actually need to function and may not be able to afford if it gets repealed. Had I given birth before the potential repeal, I would have gotten a free pump and have an easier time paying the hospital bill. Because of Obamacare, I get 2 dental insurances for our children, making their dental care essentially free. Plus, who says rates will even go down if it is repealed? Insurance companies are a business and they do not care about the people. The same applies to all parts of the healthcare world. Now that they know they are able to charge outrageous prices, why reduce them along with the overhead?

After all of this though, I remain hopeful. The turnout for the 3rd party made a statement that people are tired of being held hostage to a two-party system. Even more importantly, I remember that Trump is a businessman and marketed himself to win. Why does this make me hopeful? Maybe he will go back to leaning more liberal on social matters as he had in the past. Maybe he knew that acting like a crazy, misogynistic racist would guarantee him  the win and he conned the base into thinking he was one of them. Maybe he lets the states decide, and as someone who lives in Massachusetts, I have nothing to worry about personally. These are all possibilities.

Make no mistake though; Trump didn’t win. Hillary lost. This is an important point. This was not the 3rd party’s fault. This was entirely the fault of the DNC for rigging the primary. The success of the 3rd party was very much a product of the DNC corruption and the polls at the end of the day were proof of that. Today is a day to focus on what’s important. It’s not about gloating that your team won or depressed over your loss. Why? Because the game isn’t over. If the Republican do nothing to better the nation in 2 years, they will ultimately lose at the midterms and may even lose the next presidential election. If they do improve the state of affairs in America for all people, everyone one wins. Plus, checks and balances are there for a reason so there will be no Madison King Aerys to deal with. What we do know for sure is that Trump is a loose cannon and nobody knows what to expect. This all depends on the “experts” that he hires to be his advisors and his cabinet. Just remember this: United we stand; divided we fall. Be kind to each other and respect others, even if you disagree with them.

The State of Today

Has their really been a more divisive time in American history than there is right now? The answer is “yes” and that time was the Civil War. Races are against races, religions are against religions. Political parties are a civil war amongst themselves. There does not seem to be any common ground anymore or even any compromises willing to be made. People are awful and hateful and this does not seem to be changing anytime soon.

The fact is that people don’t seem to care that they are worsening the situation. If you go to 4 different websites to see the statistics of racially motivated police shootings, you are going to see 4 different numbers. Everyone has something to gain on their side of the politics. What about the facts? I’m a person who enjoys facts. This is how I base my opinions. I want to know if there are a disproportionate amount of lethal police shootings towards minorities or if there are a lot of lethal shootings period. I want to know if it’s just that one group yells the loudest in outrage that makes it like it is an everyday occurrence. Because guess what? Now it is just about to get a whole lot worse.

The argument is that police officers are all racist and don’t think black lives matters. If that is a fact, than that is something that should outrage the masses. But what does shooting and killing innocent and caring police officers prove? That you are just as savage as these horrible corrupt police officers that you so choose to be against right now? You have turned a movement with reasonable issues that should be addressed and turned it into a terrorist organization that have made things worse for their cause. Now that a second group of police officers were plowed down by a person of a specific race and cause, the police officers are going to be even more on edge and this cycle will just keep continuing on with no end in sight.

There is a civil war brewing in America. It is the fault of people who dismiss that there are problems with race in America. It is the fault of people who look at all people who even seem to be Arab as if they are Muslim terrorists about to tear down America. It is the fault of any group that wants to put the lives of any citizens above the lives of others. What is the point of treating everyone equally and “everyone is the same on the inside” if we turn against anyone who isn’t like us? The lives of all kind human beings matter. There is racial inequality in America and that’s a fact. My youngest son has been called derogatory terms for Asian people. I have seen vandalism at establishments owned by Muslims because of their religion. Anyone who says that there isn’t a problem with race in America is blind or unwilling to admit the truth. This does not mean that innocent police officers need to be slaughtered in cold blood because that makes you no better than the struggles that you are fighting against. That is profiling. That is wrong. What happened in Dallas and Baton Rouge will happen again and that is sickening. We need to fight against this shedding of innocent blood because we should be better than this.