Regarding the 2nd Amendment

It’s been a fucker of a week. Lots to say over here. But I’m going to start with the respawn of the gun control/gun sense debate in the wake of the horrific shooting in Parkdale, Florida.

I’ve been really annoyed by people who regurgitate old, already-debunked talking points like “What about Chicago” (not the gun murder capital of the US, people) and “It’s not about guns it’s about mental illness” (no, it’s really not) and then say the 2nd Amendment must be protected.

Thing is?

The 2nd Amendment is already not being followed because we don’t have any well-regulated militias. That’s what the damn amendment STARTS with. It’s supposed to be part of the whole dynamic.

Because of that, when talking to 2A proponents I’m gonna REALLY put the 2nd amendment in their faces. So – you want a gun? I propose you join a militia. I propose militias be legal entities registered with the Department of Defense, which would be put into play during disasters in their local areas, helping clean and protect people who have lost walls and locks and whatnot. Anyone can start a militia… and this means even a new Black Panther party. (The number of concealed carry license applications are up for Black women in Chicago, so I can totally see women starting their own militia.) Gun purchase would require proof of current well-regulated militia membership in good standing. Any gun carry requires valid and current militia membership card, and any citizen who sees a civilian carry is entitled to demand they show their card. Militias would be responsible financially for ANY collateral damage one of their members inflicts or suffers…. including paying for toddlers’ funerals. If someone goes off the rails, the militia is fined for not regulating their membership and no one can buy, use, or carry a gun for the next however long. Militias are not allowed to lobby, and no one is allowed to bring a gun to a political protest where emotions will run high.

Let’s tell the 2A proponents we’re making this as obvious as asking someone for their keys when they’re too drunk to drive – asking someone for the keys to their gun safe when they’re angry or frightened, and assure them they’ll have protection from the rest of the militia.

And since that’s all in alignment with the 2nd amendment? the NRA should be on board, right?

 

RIP Ursula K. Le Guin

I’m shaken. Tearing up. I thought she had more time.

Thank you, wonderful soul, for Arha/Tenar:

“A dark hand had let go its lifelong hold upon her heart. But she did not feel joy, as she had in the mountains. She put her head down in her arms and cried, and her cheeks were salt and wet. She cried for the waste of her years in bondage to a useless evil. She wept in pain, because she was free.”

Thank you, wonderful soul, for Therru/Tehanu:

“I think,” Tehanu said in her soft, strange voice, “that I when I die, I can breathe back the breath that made me live. I can give back to the world all that I didn’t do. All that I might have been and couldn’t be. All the choices I didn’t make. All the things I lost and spent and wasted. I can give them back to the world. To the lives that haven’t been lived yet. That will be my gift back to the world that gave me the life I did live, the love I lived, the breath I breathed.”

I will miss the books you never wrote.

Choosing A Word Of The Year For 2018

I never used to do a word of the year. It seemed kind of reductionist to me, like how can you fit a whole year’s worth of intentions into a single word? I would do other things instead, like spells* or tarot spreads* or wishes or resolutions … which to me all boil down to the same thing: announcing myself to myself for the Janus moment of the Julian New Year. It was a fun thing to do on New Year’s Day when the hangover brunches were done.

Flash forward to few years ago. I started a new therapist, and he’s all about words of the year. One for the year itself and one for the anniversary of our work together. I started to like it as a theme for the one most important thing I wanted to accomplish in my work with him. It was a metric to use, an assessment of where I wanted to be rather than an obligation.  Yet January of last year it was difficult for me to choose, because I couldn’t get quite the right connotations for what I wanted to achieve. In order to make it work,  I did an image that listed all the associated synonyms** that conveyed the meaning I wanted, and that kept me from agonizing anymore.

Of course, in December he asked me to choose a new word for 2018. Since I’d had such a tough time last year, I whined about it (like I do). Last thing I wanted was either a crappy word or the frustration I had had last year. But after a bit of conversation, I agreed I’d have one for January.

…And didn’t think about it again, because I was on the way to family events, and fuck that.

But it came to me on Dec 31st.
Just jumped into my head, then out in front of me, ready to roll. Kinda like Athena.

My word of the year is howl.

At first I scoffed. Seemed silly, and too on-the-nose for me. But as I thought about it, and subtracted the connotations of pain or distress? It really clicked. Wolves howl to communicate over great distances and, in particular, to keep connected with their close packmates***. They also howl to establish territory, and as I thought about it, I realized my stories are my territory and it’s time I treated them as such, rather than as a sidebar.

This silly, on-the-nose word ended up being hella appropriate.

So there it is. Happy Howl Year!

 

* I do spells and tarot spreads to trick my brain. Rituals are pretty powerful ways to embed things in one’s psyche, and the symbolism in many tarot cards are a fun way to allow my brain to find connections I might not, otherwise.

** For the record, I chose fierce, as in strong, protective, and unapologetic. Not as in looking incredible. ;)

*** Per this study

rainstorm

Photo taken through a window is blurred by raindrops. A tree, some bushes and some power poles can be made out, but everything else is a blur.

Outside our window, there’s a torrential rainstorm. Inside, we are rewatching Moana. There’s a lot to do, but there are points of progress.

CW: Sandy Hook

This is a little bit personal, even though I knew no one directly affected. I knew someone peripherally affected, though, and I had an insight into a person accused.

.

You’re warned.

Five years ago today, I was working at Pitney Bowes in Stamford, Connecticut. I remember this day very clearly, because a coworker of mine got a call in the morning.

“No, I haven’t seen the news.”

In 3 minutes, he broke down at his desk. The crying was a shock in our usually humming open-plan office. This was a gregarious, vivacious person who had never been anything other than positive about anything. It was a bit of a shock. And then he left.

I also remember when the shooter’s supposed ID was first publicized, the wrong person was blamed, and I thought “this guy who trained his cat to sit and beg can’t be a shooter….

 

can he?”

(These are the moments where I sympathize with people who defend horrible people – the instant of “do I adore a monster?”)

But Ryan Lanza was innocent – completely – and it took too long to find that out.  I want to call that out because as much as I have faith in our media’s intentions, that wasn’t right. None of what happened here was right.

The next day, my wonderful gregarious coworker was calling people to talk about memorials and funerals.

For a week, I got to overhear snippets of arrangements.

…. It didn’t take more than a year before I started to hear about the conspiracy theorists.

I post about this because Sandy Hook hit me hard. And close. Even though I only knew one person peripherally associated.

I will never forgive Alex Jones. Or any other person who doesn’t believe the parents. Ever. Ever.

As if a tweet is going to bug Kirsten Gillibrand…

In case you haven’t seen it, content warning for the tweet mocking KG having shaming implications.

I’m not going to post it here, because this isn’t a news blog.

But.
But.

44.5 called Senator Gillibrand “Schumer’s flunky.”

ahaha. aha.
*snerk*

*reads it again*

BAHAHAHAHAHA!

The woman who is the ONLY senator in Washington who voted against all 20 of 44.5’s nominees, a flunky for that guy? THAT guy? Ohhh that just shows how desperate 44.5 is. Deeesperate. She stood stronger than either Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders in those hearings and continues to stand strong. I mean, sure, she’s a politician like any other, and has her flaws. But she’s placed her flag, and it’s firmly on the progressive side.

Woooo I had been avoiding the news because it’s like everything is opening a new wound, but that one had me laughing.