Daily Archives: August 4, 2019

The Phrase “Crazy Person With a Gun” is at Best Unhelpful and at Worst Distracting

This past week has been one of the deadliest week in the United States. Five mass shootings have resulted in the multiple murders of innocent civilians. The most recent shootings were yesterday in Ohio and Texas.

This morning, you know who’s Chief of Staff, Mick Mulvaney made the rounds on the Sunday morning political talk shows, discussing the latest shootings and defending you know who.

Instead of owing up to that you know who has had a direct effect on encouraging the accused shooters, Mr. Mulvaney stated the following:

“This was a sick person, the person in Dayton was a sick person. No politician is to blame for that. The person who was responsible here are the people who pulled the trigger. We need to figure out how to kind of create less of those kinds of people as a society and not trying to figure out who gets blamed going into the next election.”

In other words, the shooter was a crazy person with a gun. His actions were his own and are wholly unconnected to what you know who has been saying lately.

I have an issue when it comes to the phrase “crazy person with a gun”. At best, it is unhelpful and derogatory towards those who are dealing with mental health issues. I am not an expert on every disease that falls under the label of “mental health”, but I do know those of us suffer are trying to live as best we can. If there are those who are a danger to themselves and others, I would hope that there is intervention before someone is hurt or killed.

At worst, the phrase is distracting from the real issue. Racism, like every ism, does not occur in a bubble. It comes from someone or something. In this case, it is you know who. Granted, his racism did not occur in a bubble either. However, given his platform and his willingness to dog whistle and openly knock individuals or entire groups because of their race, I would not be surprised if there was a connection.

I wish I could say that this weekend is ending on a happy note. But it is not. May the memories of those killed be a blessing and may we once and for all, see one another as human beings.

Happy Sunday.

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Filed under Mental Health, National News, Television

Ashes in the Snow Book Review

When we think of the atrocities and the mass murder that was unfortunately part and parcel of World War II, we think of the Nazis and the Holocaust. We don’t think of the Soviet Union.

Ruta Sepetys‘s 2018 novel, Ashes in the Snow (originally titled Between Shades of Gray) begins in Lithuania in 1941. Lina is your average fifteen year old girl with a passion and a gift for art that shows promise. Then her world is turned upside down by the occupation of the Baltic states.

Soviet officers force themselves into her home in the middle of the night. Separated from her father, Lina, along with her mother, young brother and many others are forced into crowded trains. Their destination is Siberia and a work camp that is dehumanizing in every sense of the word.

Lina uses her artistic skills to keep herself alive mentally and to draw what she is experiencing while hoping that her drawings will reach her father. In spite of the conditions she is living in, Lina fights to survive with her family, but is that enough to keep them alive until they are free?

This book is amazing and a must read, in my opinion. It is obviously not an easy book to read, but a necessary book to read. Experiencing this world through Lina’s eyes, we see this young girl grow into a young woman under circumstances that I would wish on no one. If one thing stood out to me, was that Lina has this incredible source of inner strength that keeps her going when she could easily give up and let death take her.

I absolutely recommend it.

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Filed under Book Review, Books, Feminism, History

I Blame You, Mr. President

When boiled down to a simple job description, the job of the President of the United States is to protect and serve the American people. Their job is not to serve and protect wealth donors/lobbyists or a specific group of citizens.

And yet, this President has done both.

His openly racist comments and double talk about the continuing gun violence has led to an epidemic of massacres in this country. Yesterday, the list of mass shootings in the United States added two more communities to this gruesome and bloody list: Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas.

At this point, I am ready to throw my hands up the air. It is well beyond frustrating that some of our elected politicians (you know who included) continue to look the other way or give lip service to this continuing crisis. Will it get to the point that we will have to go through airport level security every time we leave our homes?

Personally, I blame you know who. The accused gunmen were Caucasian men who used racist rhetoric and beliefs as a reason for their actions. It does not help that you know who has openly expressed racists beliefs without being checked by those who can check him. It also does not help that he has given lip service to those who have experienced gun violence while supporting the NRA.

I don’t want to have to go through airport style security every I have leave my home. But at this point, it feels like that may be the only option. That is, unless some of our elected politicians grow a pair and fight for the citizens who were elected to represent them.

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Filed under National News, Politics