General

Roe v. Wade and US v. Russia

I have often said that Elon Musk’s Genius borders on Madness. I still think so, and, with his impending purchase of Twitter – should it go through – he has the potential of Electrifying social media the way he Electrified the car industry. Twitterdom is holding its breath, as are all his rivals. Will it be a Coup, or a Dud? Incidentally, that the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) supports Musk’s suggestion of Trump’s return to Twitterdom is perfectly in sync with their mantra of Civil Liberties for Everyone! No exclusions! No Politics! Bravo!

Twitterdom is not the only event going on in our world, and while I know that most of you reading this are aware, I worry that many have become either numb, or simply tuned off to maintain their sanity! We cannot do that, because apathy is precisely what evil forces take advantage of in order to run amok with their malfeasance!

Some episodes riveting our attention away from the really serious and dangerous issues are more like Dateline, or Soap Operas than they are real life. However, they Are Real Stories. For instance: the Depp/Heard trial with all its nauseating, lurid and disgusting details? So unnecessary! Then there was that other riveting suspense story of the Criminal and the Corrections Officer! He ended up going to jail again, she, apparently, shot herself and later died. Another gullible, naive woman! Or what about Boris Johnson incorporating Churchill’s riveting words into his speech re: Ukraine! Seriously? Bozo the Clown believes that he can be a Churchill? That’s really hilarious! What a sad testament to Political Leadership in more places than ever! Conjuring up WWII words and images as many Politicians and Media Experts are doing does not make this dangerous war in Ukraine more palatable, justifiable or acceptable! This applies to ALL nations involved!

Despite all that occurring, I often wonder what happens to the Humans who are being ravaged by violent storms sweeping away large swaths of homes, farms and other dwellings in these United States? Are they not worth a follow up? How do they cope? Out of sight, out of mind? Or, what about the heat suffocating India and Pakistan, as well as droughts, fires and famines that are causing more agony in many places, and how those Humans are coping? What about the ongoing wars, protests and unrest continuing in so many countries and how many Humans are being killed, imprisoned and hungry due to that? The news reports seem to pick and choose which are worth getting excited about, and which are not. So do the algorithms of social media that filter out what they don’t deem worth our talking about. What about a Pandemic, that is still killing about 325 people daily in our country let alone elsewhere, and, that according to Bill Gates and Ed Yong (writing for The Atlantic), is not the last one to ravage our ill-prepared systems? Or, the greed and outright lies of oil companies as they rake in humongous profits while raising our gas tank fill more and more? This also applies to all those Industries and Companies taking advantage of the economic situation and raising prices across the board so that Ordinary People are strapped, while the rich get richer! Unfair! All these need our attention, because they ultimately do affect all of us!

And, much as I identify with Ukraine’s tragic Calamity, I am so sick and tired of Zelensky and his daily guilting of the world to do more and more and more! He is acting out his best role yet, and thoroughly milking it to the hilt! Moreover, those World Leaders stumbling all over themselves to show how they can support Ukraine more and, in the process, arrogantly and rudely rubbing Putin’s nose in the dirt, are seeming more and more choreographed than genuine. They all seem to be posing for the cameras, with the Mainstream Media yelling Rah-Rah-Rah rather than interviewing those many wise and sane journalists, writers and retired military who are warning about the dangers of our world events. You will never see them on the Corporate Media Channels who are not in the business of educating people by depicting two sides and promoting enlightenment rather than brainwashing! We don’t even seem to be pretending anymore that this is a Proxy War between the West and Russia. So, is this WWIII happening, although it is being kept localized in Ukraine At The Moment? Will it remain so if no compromise is reached sometime very soon? We cannot be apathetic about all this!

However, and despite all that and more on the world stage, the United States has been up in arms over the Supreme Court leak regarding the possible upending of Roe v. Wade and the criminalization of a woman’s right to choose what to do with her own body – which wouldn’t make us much different from what the Taliban are doing to suppress females in Afghanistan. Scary! Moreover, this effort coming on top of all the gerrymandering and redistricting, the restrictions on voting rights, banning of books, which is the same idiocy as the Taliban’s, demonizing of LGBTQ humans in the most inhumane of legislations, chipping away at human rights insidiously and doggedly, inviting bigotry and racism against Jews, Muslims, Immigrants, Asians and the list goes on and on and on! It is terribly frightening, and one has to wonder: is it religiosity, or white supremacy, or simply a power grab that is driving all this and propelling us into the Dark Ages and to the end of these United States as a bastion of Freedom and Democracy?! Should these malicious actions continue unchecked, we will All suffer, All of us, because despite all the issues that need fixing in this country – numerous as they are and ranging from the inane to the outrageous – we simply cannot fix them by substituting a Democracy with an Authoritarian Regime. Meanwhile, neither the Democrats, nor the Republicans are behaving reasonably, or rationally! Both Parties are driving us into the ditch, and we are helpless to really change any of this unless we vote sane and wise people into office. Let us hope that we will do this when Elections come around! Otherwise? Do you want to wait and see what living under an Authoritarian Regime feels like? Really? Wake up, America! Now!

I will end my rant today by expressing my outrage and grief at the deliberate execution of Shireen Abu Akleh, the Palestinian-American Al-Jazeera journalist, and at the continuing Catastrophe that the Palestinian people have been suffering from for decades! The draconian, hypocritical, bigoted and savage behavior of the Israeli Government and its settlers continues unabated, while hypocrisy, double standards, racism and the colonist mentality of the US and Western Nations allow it to do so! What is worse than this is the shameful and despicable inaction and paralysis of Arab Nations who have been compromised  and muzzled by signing on to the Abraham Accords, and who are being surveilled by the Pegasus system? It is tragic and disgraceful!

2022

Weddings & Rituals

When my grandson told me that he was invited to the wedding of his friend I almost teared up! When had he become adult enough to have friends who were getting married? He is my first grandchild, and I still remember the night my daughter and her husband called me to say that they were picking me up to go with them to the hospital as it was time – and, yes, I’ve told this story before – I also remember how I jumped out of bed, went to my closet and was rummaging through my clothes to find something nice to wear as if the newborn would even be noticing what I had on! I guess that my excitement at the prospect dumbed me! Wasn’t I the one who had been stating unequivocally for the past nine months that I wasn’t going to be the kind of Grandmother who oohed and aahed over her grandchildren as if I was the first one ever to have them? That not every utterance from them was going to send me swooning? I was going to be Different! Well! Well! The minute I saw him I went flat on my back and had to eat all that Different bragging! The fact of the matter is that I was no Different than Billions of Grandmothers across our Planet.

So here he is now, that First Grandchild, a Millennial, informing me that he is invited to his first wedding! How did those years fly by so quickly? In talking to many friends they echo the same feeling of how the years flew by – as if suddenly? – and found us now living out our Old Age. My, oh my! Fleeting as they may seem, though, our lives have seen many Births and Firsts, Marriages and Rituals each occasion being a Marker in its own way, each one leaving its Imprint on our lives. The fact of the matter is that they weren’t that fleeting, that occasionally they dragged on, that sometimes they felt endless, however, now in our doddering years, with time erasing some of those memories and forgetting the trials and tribulations of it all, we dwell on ruing those missed special periods of time – days? weeks? months? years? – when we should have been Living The Moment, not just looking at What Comes After It. Now, though, for those of us who have Grandchildren (or, Nieces, Nephews, or Godchilds etc.) and none of the child-rearing responsibilities, we are at that precious juncture where we could (should?) be Living The Moment. I make an effort to do that, though there is no denying that I regret not having done that throughout my life!

Anyway, musings aside, some of the Millennials, specifically those living in thriving prosperous communities (others having different issues), seem to be forging their own path in this world, with their own rules, norms, standards and aspirations. From those I have had the pleasure of watching from their toddler years to their Millennial stage – the oldest now being about 42, the youngest about 27 years of age – as well as from articles and books that I have read about them, I feel that they are less Idealistic and more Realistic than previous generations – mine, certainly, when we thought that we were going to change the world, and how though in some ways we did, in others we goofed big time. Anyway, back to the wedding whence the invitations were sent out by Text to the few close relatives and friends who were invited. Text! I loved the idea! The wedding itself took place at the grooms’ parental home with a dinner following the Ceremony at which the grooms’ father officiated! How charming! How original!

Moreover, and again from current trends, as well as the booming apartment buildings sprouting out everywhere there is an inch of land to build on, some Millennials do not want to be tied down to a mortgage, while others have chosen the more traditional route of their parents. On the whole, they seem to prefer the Freedom of packing up the U-Haul and moving whenever and wherever they fancy. They prefer Flexibility: in their dwellings, workplaces and all else. Perhaps they understand Freedom much better than any of us do? They also seem to be applying that same Flexibility to their relationships: not bothering with Boxing people into what they seem to believe are divisive categories: black, brown, white, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Immigrant, Native, Gay, Trans, tall, short or Whatever! They don’t seem to care about all that. Good for them! They also don’t seem to care about Politicizing Every Issue. They simply want their politicians to do what’s Right for People, for the Environment and for Humanity as a whole. Do we then wonder why so many of them are Bernie Sanders fans? I’m not a Millennial, but I am so much in agreement with them! Moreover, they hardly ever watch the vacuous stuffed shirts on television, huffing and puffing their irrelevant propaganda and brainwashing with no real news and a plethora of needless opinions. They prefer quickly scanning the headlines on their phones, or on one of the many Apps on their devices. And, when it comes time to vote – which they do – they research the candidates, make their choice and head to the polling station. No Fuss! No Muss!

Another observation is that during the years when my children were youngsters and if two kids were slugging it out in the schoolyard we didn’t know about this unless they came home bruised and bloodied in which case we patched them up, maybe scolded them a bit and then sent them on their merry way! We weren’t that much into our children’s business hovering over every nuance, mood and event in their lives. We were more about “benign neglect,” weren’t we? Nowadays, all the Alarms would go off, the School Principle will call, Counselors and Therapists would get lined up!  A whole big todo will ensue! That’s another reason why many Millennials seem to be unable to “self-sooth” as they call it these days; to handle any kind of trouble in their lives on their own. They seem to need constant emotional reinforcement and expect society (parents, boss, coworkers, partners etc.) to provide that – especially since they were brought up by wired, tired, over-achieving helicopter parents – and in most cases, that does occur, after which they probably do develop their own mechanisms for dealing with adversity. But it does seem to be taking so much longer than it used to, doesn’t it? Nevertheless, they are growing up in a changed technological world that affects their personal, social, and political landscape with challenges, anxieties and choices that could be quite overwhelming to navigate through. Phew!

Hopefully, the Marriages and Rituals that they are reinventing to suit their lifestyles and desires will help them to navigate their lives successfully and contribute to making their world a better place than the totally screwed up one we are leaving them with. Perhaps? Hopefully!