Category Archives: history lesson

Free Speech Does Not Exist


Yes, you read that correctly. There is no such thing as free speech. There was never supposed to be such as thing as free speech.

“But Kim,”  your shocked voices are screaming, “there IS free speech. It’s covered by the First Amendment!”

Um…No, it’s not.

Freedom of speech is covered. Freedom to say what you want and not be persecuted by your government is covered. But as the Great Haired One and many others have recently found out…

Speech is not free. You are free to speak about almost anything you choose in this country.

  • Democrats and Republicans can insult each other as much as they want.
  • The KKK can leave fliers anywhere they want, even in a black neighborhood (though I think they’ve missed their target demographic).
  • People can stand on sidewalks wearing sandwich signs stating “Repent: The end is nigh”
  • I can write this blog post.

But for every phrase you speak and every line you utter, there is a cost. For you see, although you are free to say what you want without fear of government persecution, Freedom of Speech does not protect you from the court of Public Opinion. And sometimes that court doesn’t side in your favor.

So, the next time someone says, “It’s free speech!” remind them it’s FREEDOM of Speech that’s free. Free speech costs extra.

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Random Thoughts on Race (No Hidden Meaning Here)


A few minutes ago an article came through my Facebook newsfeed. “Rachel Dolezal’s Unintended Gift to America.” The blurb under the title: “Troubled as she is, she has opened up a candid, long-delayed conversation about the meaning of racial identity.”

On the surface, this seems like a wonderful thing. Except for the fact that I have lost count of the number of titles and subtitles I’ve read that said practically this same thing. Whenever the latest race issue rears its ugly head, as the story starts to die and people are about to move on to the next shiny news story, someone trots out the “We’ve started a conversation,” or “We’ve begun a dialogue” mantra. And again, that’s well and good.

Question…

When are we going to FINISH the conversation? Cuz, I gotta tell ya, I’m tired of talking about the same things over and over.

Race is a man-made construct. It was created to divide people. And if we human beings aren’t good at anything else, we’re damn good at pointing out differences.  We don’t just separate our whites from our colors,  we separate our whites into different shades and our darks into different hues. I could go into reasons both biblical and historical to explain why this happened, but that’s not what this post is about.

Here’s what it’s about, and another question…

Why does it matter?

In 2015, this is what we are:

Race A blames Race B for what Race B did generations ago.

Race B doesn’t like Race A because Race B thinks it’s superior because of how some of Race A behaves.

Interestingly enough, Race A and Race B will come together in hatred of Race C, again because of how some of Race C behaves.

Pick a continent. Any continent. It applies.

But, here’s a concept; instead of hating an entire race of people because of the acts of a few, why not just hate the acts of a few? You don’t chuck the whole set of china because of one broken plate. You don’t dump the car because of one broken taillight and you don’t throw away the whole bag of cookies because some of them are broken. You fix what you can, discard what can’t be fixed and you enjoy what’s left. We can do that with dinnerware, autos and cookies but not with people?

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting we all hold hands and sing kumbaya, but I am saying that we’re all human beings. We are all born the same, we all need the same things to survive. We all bleed red. We all have whites of our eyes and black pupils that can go from pin heads to nail heads. Some of us are dark, some of us are light, some of us are black and some of us are almost transparent, but our hearts beat the same, our brains form thoughts in the same manner and deep down we all know that hate based on a man-made construct is stupid.

Don’t believe me? Watch young children play. They could care less what color the other kids are. As long as there is room on the merry-go-round and space in the sandbox, kids will play together. Happily. Forever.

I know it’s going to take an invasion from Race #42 for the races on this planet to start acting like they have some sense. And I know that for the most part this blog post is preaching to the choir. But if we’re going to have the continuous loop of “race issue occurs/social media all atwitter/furor dying down/insert comment about dialogue here,” I at least want my blog post to stand as a reminder that we still have a conversation to finish.

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An Open Letter to Karen Fitzgibbons, Fourth Grade Teacher of the Year — from One of “The Blacks”


Dear Ms. Fitzgibbons…and others like you,

Well aren’t you a special snowflake. You’ve got your degree and you’re helping to mold young minds. Too bad your own mind is twisted, dark and full of unkind thoughts. I haven’t read what it is you teach fourth graders, but I can only assume (with a shudder) that it makes a lasting impression. Just as I’m sure your recent Facebook post made an impression on your bosses, your neighbors and the parents of your students.

I’m glad you apologized to “the appropriate people,” which I would guess is a short list consisting of the principal of your school, maybe a couple of coworkers who might be people of color (aka…the good blacks), and the school district that could turn your summer vacation into a permanent one.

Honestly, I do hope you lose your job, but not for the reasons you might think.

But before I delve into that, let’s look at the statement that got you into hot water to begin with. I pulled it from the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.

“I’m going to just go ahead and say it … the blacks are the ones causing the problems and this ‘racial tension.’ I guess that’s what happens when you flunk out of school and have no education. I’m sure their parents are just as guilty for not knowing what their kids were doing; or knew it and didn’t care. I’m almost to the point of wanting them all segregated on one side of town so they can hurt each other and leave the innocent people alone. Maybe the 50s and 60s were really on to something. Now, let the bashing of my true and honest opinion begin….GO! #imnotracist #imsickofthemcausingtrouble #itwasatagedcommunity,”

Where to being. Where. To. Begin…

I’m just going to pull this apart sentence by sentence.

I’m going to just go ahead and say it … the blacks are the ones causing the problems and this ‘racial tension.’

So “the blacks” are the actual problem. Not intolerant non blacks, or overworked hyped up police officers or other teens who most likely took a private invitation to a party and made it public. It’s just “the blacks.” Good to know.

I guess that’s what happens when you flunk out of school and have no education.

Wait…so only “the blacks” flunk out of school and have no education? So, all “the whites” have degrees and are making $100,000 a year? Huh…I’m sitting in Tim Hortons right now and every worker here is white. Who knew you made $100k at Timmys?

I’m sure their parents are just as guilty for not knowing what their kids were doing; or knew it and didn’t care.

Just as guilty for the problems, the ‘racial tension,’ the flunk out rate, or the lack of education? And who should I blame for your inability to string together a coherent thought? Please tell me you teach fourth grade gym.*

I’m almost to the point of wanting them all segregated on one side of town so they can hurt each other and leave the innocent people alone.

Almost? What’s your tipping point? Seriously, I’m curious. Which side of town do you want to give them? Are you going to move if it’s decided they get your side of town?

Maybe the 50s and 60s were really on to something.

Again, please tell me you teach gym. It was during the 50s and 60s that schools were desegregated. So you want to go back and do it again?

Now, let the bashing of my true and honest opinion begin….GO!

Well, since you asked so nicely…

#imnotracist #imsickofthemcausingtrouble #itwasatagedcommunity,”

Um…#yesyouare #imsickofpeoplelikeyou #learntospellgated

You then go on to tell us that your rant wasn’t aimed at any particular group of people.

So, “the blacks,” “them,” and “they” refer to….?

You know, I could forgive you your rant and chalk it up to frustration. I could forgive you your rant because as you said at the beginning of your post, you’re angry. I could forgive you your rant for any number of reasons, if it weren’t for one thing:

You deleted it.

You didn’t even have the guts to stand by your words. You’re not just ignorant or racist or bigoted for writing that post, you’re a hypocrite and a coward for taking it down. As much as I don ‘t want racist, bigoted and ignorant teachers educating the next generation, I don’t need people who don’t have the fortitude to stand by what they believe teaching them either. So please, do us all a favor, put down the red ink pen (still hoping it’s a whistle), hand in your grade book and find another profession.

*This is in no way slamming gym teachers. My point is that since she misspelled a hashtag, has a hard time forming a coherent thought and doesn’t seem to know U.S. History, the idea of her teaching English, reading or the Social Sciences scares me.

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46(?)/46/46 – Day #2: HAPPY NEW YEAR!


So, it’s 2015 and that means everyone is busting out their resolutions. Lose weight. Eat better. Save more money. Be nicer. All things people have pledged and all valid and good goals.

I’m not a fan of making new years resolutions. For example, I didn’t decide on Jan. 1 of last year to quit smoking. I decided one day in Feb. or March (can’t remember which) to quit, and I quit. A specific day of the year isn’t enough motivation for me to start or stop something.

But everyone keeps asking me what my resolution(s) for 2015 is/are. So, to appease these people, here is my lone New Years 2015 Resolution:

I resolve to be me.

Yeah, that might sound like a simple thing to do, but it’s really not. This is ME we’re talking about. I spend a good part of my life debating what I should or should not say, what I should or should not do, and what others might think about my decisions. In other words, when I say I don’t really care about what others think, what I really mean is that what others think of feel aren’t enough to stop me from doing or saying what I want to do or say.

Yes, ladies and gents…there are times when I STILL don’t say or do what I want to say or do.

Feel free to shudder at the thought.

But frankly, my resolution has less to do with what I say and do and more with what I allow around me and the things I go along with. Up until now, I’ve excused behavior or attitudes or opinions that made me uncomfortable, whether it was because I “thought” I understood what they person really meant, or I was sure the person didn’t actually mean what they said and were just talking out of anger, confusion or just legitimate ignorance. I did that a lot last year.

A. LOT.

I’m not going to do it anymore. If you say something I don’t agree with or that could be interpreted in a variety of ways, I’m going to ask you to clarify it. From that point, we’ll either remain friends with a new understanding, or…

Because I’m no longer willing to be the “exception.” I’ve done that for 45 years. I’m not doing it for 46.

This covers a variety of areas and not just the obvious ones some of your immediately jumped to. It covers both my personal and professional life. That said, just because we might not agree on an issue doesn’t mean the friendship is over. I disagree with a lot of my friends about a lot of things, and I KNOW many of you disagree with me quite often. Those aren’t the types of situations I’m referring to. I guess, the only thing I can suggest is that you be you, I’ll be me and we’ll see what we see.

So I guess you could sum up my resolution as such: The gloves are off.

See what happens when you make me do something I don’t want to do? 😉

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An Introduction of Sorts…


Over the last couple of days, I’ve been called quite a few things. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Feminazi
  • Witty
  • Bleeding-heart liberal
  • Opinionated
  • Unfair
  • Eloquent
  • Unbalanced
  • Brilliant
  • Hateful
  • Sarcastic
  • Big-mouthed
  • Bitchy
  • Smart

I’m shocked “stupid” wasn’t bandied about, but hey, I’m not going to look a gift horse in the mouth. 🙂

Just for fun, and by way of an introduction to my new followers (Hello and Welcome!), I’m going to offer my opinion on each of these descriptions. Cuz, y’know, why not.

Feminazi – If refusing to remain silent while men wage war against women’s rights, shouting down loud-mouthed blowhards, and demanding that women have not equal but the majority say over what goes into and comes out of their bodies makes me a feminazi, then by God, I’ll carry the scepter, and wear the tiara and sash proudly while I take care of my family, build my career and have sex when and with whom I choose, thank-you-very-much!

Witty – Well, thank you. I’d say I try, but honestly, I have to try harder NOT to be humorous. That’s not meant to be conceited, I really have a hard time not letting some sort of humor leak into everything I write. When you write dry, boring copy for a living, fighting the urge to be (or attempt to be) funny is hard. That’s part of the reason for why I blog. *I* need an outlet. 🙂 Imagine a bowl of bran flakes….with a fruit loop in thrown in. Finish that joke however you wish.

Bleeding-heart Liberal –  Not really a fair assessment, and I will explain why later.

Opinionated – Gee…me? Nah, I don’t have an opinion on anything. And even if I did, I would never, ever deign to share it.

Unfair – I think that assessment is unfair. I try to show all facets of an issue before offering my opinion, unless the issue is so ridiculous that there is really no other facet to show other than the ridiculousness of the issue.

Eloquent – Thanks…I try! Not very eloquent, but heartfelt!

Unbalanced – Now see, I don’t know if the person who said this meant “unbalanced” as in only showing one side of the story, or “unbalanced” as in I need to be fitted for a straight jacket and prepped for a frontal lobotomy. Then again, it could mean both. But to quote Sheldon (from The Big Bang Theory), “I’m not crazy. My mother had me tested.”

Brilliant – Really smart? According to the tests, yes. Am I capable of moments of brilliance? Of course. We all are. But brilliant? Nah…I just know what my gifts are and try to use them to their fullest as much as possible. But thank you for the compliment!

Hateful – Nope. I’m not a hateful person. I don’t hate anyone or anything. Hate is a wasted emotion. You spend all this time hating someone, but you never tell that person why you hate them. So, they’re off living their life, smelling flowers and whistling a happy tune, and you’re curled up in the fetal position on your bed, suffering from migraines, ulcers and for the life if it, cannot understand why you’re leading a miserable life. What’s wrong with that picture?

Sarcastic – You must be new here. Cuz I can hide my sarcasm for about five whole seconds. It’s harder to control than my humor. Don’t believe me? Check out practically any other post on this blog — sarcasm enters around word 50 (sometimes earlier) and doesn’t leave until I end the post. But I really think I’m more snarky than sarcastic, but oh well, po-tay-to, po-tah-to. It was still a swing and a miss in the insult department.

Big-mouhted – I think this one is a bit off the mark, and really doesn’t make much sense considering this is prose and not spoken word. If I wanted to be a big mouth on screen, I’d have to TYPE EVERYTHING IN CAPS AND BOLD IT SO I’D BE SURE YOU SAW IT. I’D ALSO ADD SEVERAL COLORS SO EVERYTHING STOOD OUT, AND USE LOTS OF “!!!!” TO MAKE SURE YOU UNDERSTOOD MY POINT!!! 

But that’s not how I roll, so nah, wrong again.

Bitchy – Yeah, I can be. I don’t argue that. Matter of fact, I embrace my inner bitch. I wish more people would do that, there would be much less heartache in the world.  But I really believe I’m bitchy only when justified, and I don’t think I’ve been particularly bitchy in this blog. But I have had my moments. LOL

Smart – Yeah, okay. Thanks. 🙂

So, that’s what others think of me and how I feel about what others think of me. Now, here’s who I know I am:

I’m a woman with an opinion who is not afraid to express it. If I read, see or hear of an injustice, an act of stupidity or other uncalled for occurrence, I will drag it out of the dark corner where it is trying to hide and expose it for what it really is. I will defend the things I believe in until I’m hoarse and my fingers bleed. If you come at me, take your best shot, cuz when I fire back, I. Won’t. Miss.

I’m a liberal who believes that those in the position to help others, should. I also believe that once you’ve been helped, you need to move to the other side of the column and become a helper yourself. If you don’t — if you continue to seek help when you could do for yourself, or you refuse to help others as you were helped, you’ll have to answer to me. And you’d better have a damn good excuse.

I believe that if you don’t vote, you don’t get to bitch. Spare me the “my one vote isn’t going to make a difference”, “the whole political process is rigged” and “our voices aren’t heard anyway” mumbo jumbo. Even if any and all of that is true, our forefathers died so we could vote. If we end up in a situation you don’t like and you did nothing about it, other than complain that the system is broken, I don’t want to hear it. Move on.

I believe everyone should have the right to love who they want, and if they want to get married, they’re crazy more power to them. (Did I mention I’m divorced? lol)

I’m a writer, a designer, a mother, a daughter a sister and a friend. I love deeply and am loyal to a fault. I’m kind to furry woodland creatures, share my toys and color inside the lines (usually).

But most of all, I love being here. It’s beats the hell out of the alternative. I’d rather smell the daisies than push them up from the other side.

And that, ladies and gents, is who I am, or at least a brief synopsis. And that’s who writes this blog. I hope you’ll stick around and see what I have to say. I’m sure it will only get more interesting as the months progress.

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An Open Letter To Rush Limbaugh


Dear Mr. Limbaugh:

So, you were forced to make an apology to Ms. Fluke and other women you insulted when you called her a “slut” and a “prostitute”. However, I have to take umbrage with several statements in your apology. In an attempt to be fair and balanced, I have included your entire apology in this post. I pulled it from the Huffington Post, I hope that doesn’t rankle you too much:

“For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week. In this instance, I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.

I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability? Where do we draw the line? If this is accepted as the norm, what will follow? Will we be debating if taxpayers should pay for new sneakers for all students that are interested in running to keep fit? In my monologue, I posited that it is not our business whatsoever to know what is going on in anyone’s bedroom nor do I think it is a topic that should reach a Presidential level.

My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir. I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.”

Now, I could argue that your whole apology was weak, at best. And I could point out that the coercion is almost palpable. But, instead, I’m going to focus on three specific statements you made. And thank you for the expediency of making all three statements consecutively. This is the passage I’d like to discuss:

I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability?

Let’s break the statement down to individual sentences so each statement can receive the response it so richly deserves, shall we?

(And since you started your “apology” with the idea that you have “illustrated the absurd with absurdity,” I’m going to borrow from that phrase for just a moment.)

Absurdity Illustration #1: I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress.

Here’s a stat for ya, Rush: Men think about sex almost twice as much as women. Notice I didn’t trot out the “men think about sex once every seven seconds” urban legend. That’s a, well, absurd statement, and I don’t need to be incendiary or outrageous to make a point. (You should try that sometime.)  Don’t believe me? Check here, here and here. Also, men see sex more as a recreational activity than women (that point is also supported in the previously provided links). Republican congressMEN created a committee to discuss contraception, and refused to let women participate.

Believe it or not, I agree with you, Rush. It is absurd that a group of men decided to get together and discuss recreational sex. That should have stayed on the golf course, in the locker room, and around the poker table — you know, those other places men work to keep female-free. Here’s an interesting tidbit: when women get together to, oh I don’t know, make a quilt, discuss the latest book club selection or swap recipes, female contraception only comes up if someone’s having an issue “down there.” Otherwise, it’s generally not topic worthy.  Birth control is not recreation for us — for many of us it’s a necessary evil. Period. (Pun intended)

Absurdity Illustration #2: I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities.

Did I miss a memo? When did this become something that the American citizens collectively would be required to pay for? I thought the point of the hearings was to discuss if private insurance should be required to cover oral contraceptives. How did that become free birth control lines at the free clinic? I believe that if I’m paying for insurance, then I should be able to get any medication I need to live a healthy and comfortable life. I get highly insulted when I’m paying for a service but I cannot receive all the parts of the service I want because someone determined I didn’t need it. Someone who has NO IDEA what I really need or want. That’s insulting. What if your insurance company told you that you’ve had enough sex in your life, and therefore they will no longer cover your Viagra? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Absurdity Illustration #3: What happened to personal responsibility and accountability?

Oh, Rush, Rush, Rush (when was the last time a woman said THAT to you?)…I’ve been pondering this same question for years. I ponder it when I hear statements such as:

  • It’s the woman’s responsibility to take care of birth control.
  • Women who use birth control are awesome. I hate having sex with a condom — it ruins it for me.
  • (When the birth control fails): Not my problem — you should have known you were fertile!
  • (When no birth control is used and pregnancy results) See statement #1 followed by “What do you expect me to do about it?”

You dare to pose the question about responsibility and accountability, while other men place that responsibility and accountability squarely on women’s shoulders. And when a woman does take on the accountability, and a pregnancy results, you point the finger and denounce her.

That’s bad enough.

But then, when the woman takes on the responsibility, but simply asks that her insurance, which she is paying for, offer contraception coverage as part of the planfor which the woman is paying premiums, you have the audacity to insult her and tell her she has no right to make the request.

You’re out of your freakin’ mind.

I doubt you’ll read this, and that’s okay. I didn’t really write it for you to read, since that might mean having some sort of contract with you, and like the flu, I try to avoid things that make me feverish, clammy and feel like I want to faint. I really wrote this for my readers who actually respect your opinion, and for my other readers who think you are a moron. So, let me finish off this post with a brief summary:

Men can get Viagra through insurance. It’s used primarily to treat Erectile Dysfunction. Most men use it for recreational sex. And yes, sex with your spouse that is not a deliberate attempt to procreate IS recreational sex.

Women use oral contraceptives to treat a myriad of gynecological ailments, including infrequent cycles, PCOS, endometriosis, PMDS and acne. They also use it for recreational sex. But insurance doesn’t want to cover oral contraception because women might use it for recreational sex.

If you can’t see the flaw in that logic, then it’s a good thing this is the end of my post, because I have nothing more to say to you.

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An Open Letter to One Million Moms


Dear 57 sad women with no life and a drinking problem One Million Moms:

You seem to think I need you to tell me what I can and cannot do, see, read, listen to or buy. Guess what? I don’t.

JC Penney’s choice of Ellen offended you. You said she didn’t represent the values of the American people.

You thought wrong.

Now you have an issue with a comic, or more to the point, Toys R Us because they are carrying the comic. Two men got married. I guess they don’t represent the values of the American people either.

I’m going to go out on a limb and say, you’re wrong again. Two people who commit to each other, who commit to share their lives, forsaking all others…

Sounds like familiar American values to me.

I have a suggestion: if you don’t like what is on your television, change the channel. Don’t like the content of a book? Don’t read it. Don’t like the song on the radio? Change the station.

But you do not have the right to dictate what I do or what I choose to let my children do, even if, in your opinion, it’s for the “public good.”

You’ll forgive me if I roll my eyes at the utterance of that statement.

The Public Good.

Do you know what has happened in the name of “the public good”?

  • Blacks were enslaved for the public good, because they were no smarter than animals and incapable of being productive members of society.
  • Women weren’t allowed to work, go to school or vote because it was for the public good that they stay home, barefoot and pregnant.
  • Native Americans were herded to reservations because they were savages and it was for the public good that they be isolated.
  • Concentration camps in Germany were for the public good.
  • Japanese internment camps were for the public good.

Get it?

You are free to pray for my soul.  Go ahead and find Bible passages that prove I’m a heathen and that I’m going to hell. Lament sadly that I just won’t accept the truth. Knock yourself out. But do it quietly. I don’t want to hear this nonsense. I do not need you to police my life. I’m more than capable of that, myself. And obviously, I’m also capable of calling you on your crap, something I will continue to do for as long as you are determined to sling it.

Regards,

One Annoyed Mom

(You see, I don’t need to claim 999,999 other Moms to stand up to you.)

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An Open Letter to Liz Trotta


By now, I’m sure you’ve seen this, but just in case, check out the link and watch the video:

Raped Too Much

Go catch up if you need to. I’ll wait…

<insert Jeopardy theme here>

Caught up? Good. Below is my open letter to Ms. Trotta.

Dear Ms. Trotta:

A friend brought your statements on Fox News to my attention. I have to say, your statements triggered a strong response, and I’d just like to share some of my thoughts with you.

Shame on you, you condescending, self-absorbed, ignorant and overall poor excuse for a human being.

I have been trying trying to figure out what you were really saying. I didn’t want to allow myself to believe that you actually, actually believe that women in the military should expect to be raped. I was trying, (trying!) to rationalize your statement of “raped too much”. I mean, surely you meant that it shouldn’t be happening at all, not that there is an acceptable level that must be allowed because, and forgive me for putting words in your mouth, “boys will be boys” or “men just can control themselves when they are in close contact.”

Oh wait, that last part, “in close contact”, you actually did say.

I’ve spent the better part of my day trying to believe you were not placing the blame of rape on the victims instead of where is actually belongs — on the individuals who are so lacking in respect and love for their fellow human beings, they choose to bolster their self-respect and exercise their power by inflicting pain on someone else in the most disgusting and heinous way imaginable.

But I’m not that naive, and as much as I wish I could be, I’m forced to face this fact: you are a sub-par human being. How dare you state that women who choose to serve their country should do so with the acknowledgement that their male counterparts might rape them. How dare you make rape a “work hazard.” And how dare you cast such a disgusting pallor on the decent and good and kind members of our military.

I’m sick and tired of people treating rape as if it’s just a plot point in a bad romance novel. I’m sick of people assuming she “asked for it” because, obviously, she was someplace she shouldn’t have been, wearing something she shouldn’t have been wearing or trusted the wrong people. Because all of the excuses, rationalization and explanations does not negate this: a rapist rapes because he wants to and the action falls on his shoulders.

I am going to assume that you or a loved one has never been through the experience. You are fortunate. Many of us, however are not, and your words are a slap in the face to the victims and their loved ones who have had to endure the act and live with the aftermath.

So, again, Ms. Trotta, shame on you. Shame for taking the blame from where it should be. Shame on you for selling out your fellow women. And shame on you for using your position to share your obviously skewered, twisted and pathetic understanding of what rape actually is with the world. I can only hope that others are as outraged as I am and take action to make sure you are yanked from your bully pulpit and never have an opportunity to spew forth your nonsense ever again.

They say that women are the “weaker” sex. Personally, I think anyone who has to rape to feel powerful is weaker than any woman could try to be.

However, Ms. Trotta, you are the exception. You are as weak as they come.

Signed

One Fed Up Woman

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Average?


Interesting Opinion column in the New York Times today. In his column, Average Is Over, Thomas L. Friedman states:

In the past, workers with average skills, doing an average job, could earn an average lifestyle. But, today, average is officially over. Being average just won’t earn you what it used to. It can’t when so many more employers have so much more access to so much more above average cheap foreign labor, cheap robotics, cheap software, cheap automation and cheap genius. Therefore, everyone needs to find their extra — their unique value contribution that makes them stand out in whatever is their field of employment. Average is over.

Well, for some  it’s over. But for some of us, average never got started. Average never even existed.

When I was a child, my parents drilled it into my head: You won’t get anywhere in life doing just the minimum. If you want to succeed in life, you have to give at least 110%.

(You see, to my parents, 100% WAS the minimum.)

They never explained why, and I never asked. It was just an accepted fact in my house.

Of course, it didn’t take me long to find out why this was a requirement.

I learned two lessons in life very early: You can’t be black and average and you can’t be female and average and expect to get anywhere in life.

And if you were both, well, you’d best get used to having to be awesome.

Yes, I had to be awesome to be seen as average. I had to be spectacular to be good and I had to be damn near perfect to be awesome.

Every. Damn. Day.

The pressure isn’t as great now as it was, because now I’m somewhat established, but that’s not a work ethic that just evaporates. It’s as much a part of me as breathing and writing. I don’t think I could half-ass something if I wanted to. Average isn’t in me, because I could never allow it.

So, it rankles me a bit that some people who have gone through life being average are crying foul that just won’t cut it anymore.

To them, a question: What was it like?

What was it like to just do the bare minimum in college and still get a decent job?

What was it like to just do just slightly above the minimum required, and still get promoted?

What was it like to write mediocre content, but still land private clients or plum assignments?

I’d really like to know, because I’ve never had a chance to experience it. Cuz, you see..

While you were busy skipping class, getting Cs on tests and partying, I was studying. Cuz I needed at least a B to match your C if I was going to get recommendations from teachers and advisors.

While you were working an extra 15 minutes a week, and going home to your family, I was working 10 extra hours a week, and going home too tired to deal with mine. And we got promoted on the same day.

While you were writing crap, our supervisor was giving me your work to correct, but you still got the credit. And the accolades. And the bonus.

So, now that you have to do what I did, you want to whine about it? Seriously?

Boo frickin’ hoo.

It will take some adjustment, but I’m sure you’ll find a way to adapt. Just like, now that you can’t be average anymore, I’ll have to adjust my game as well.

The difference is, I’m used to it. Catch me if you can.

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It Might Be a Cliche…


but as a freelancer, you should always have more than one egg in your basket.

You should have more than one basket.

Hell, if you can swing it, you should have more than one chicken farm. Or duck farm, or ostrich…

Whichever egg you prefer, have more than one farm. And more than one bird.

This makes sense to some of you, while others are thinking, “What is she talking about? Why is she going on about chicken, ducks and eggs?”

Remember in yesterday’s post I linked to a post I wrote a while back? Well the subject of that post has done a disservice to its writers yet again, and as bad as the situation already was, it just got worse.There are a lot of scared writers over there right now.

I vacillate between wanting to scream “I told you so!” and feeling sorry for them. Even when you’ve warned people repeatedly that they are on a road with nothing but a big brick wall at the end of it, you still can’t help but feel your heart sink to your stomach when they smack into it head-on. That’s how I feel tonight.

But what gets me — there are still people over there that are adamant that this too, shall pass. They aren’t looking for other work because they like working there too much.

Uh huh.

And you have the ones who insist on being optimistic. This is just a period of adjustment. All companies have to change their models from time to time. It can’t stay this bad forever.

And they’re right. It can still get worse.

Now, admittedly, I didn’t burn that bridge completely, because I want to see the famous final scene. Meaning, I want to know what kind of company they eventually evolve (or devolve) into. But I’ve long ago given up any hope (hope?) that they would be part of my income. But judging from what I read earlier, for some that place is their only income.

Still.

C’mon peeps — it’s time to get real. If you’re gonna make it as a freelancer, you can’t depend on just one client. You need many (MANY) different clients to freelance well. That is the first rule you should learn when you decide to freelance, because if you break it, it will end your freelancing career. And many people are realizing that tonight, as they start to look for B & M jobs.

So, to those who were caught off guard by the happenings of today, I’m truly sorry, and I hope this served as a wake up call for you. Get some chicken, ducks and other birds who lay eggs and cultivate as many as you can. Gets lots of pretty baskets. For now, sadly, it seems like you have all the time in the world to do it.

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