Thursday, May 29, 2014
In case you haven't noticed, America is broken. No, it's not the Congress, the Government, the mental health system, the health system, the education system--it's all of that and more. Somehow, with the help of Fox News and its ilk, the whole country is, well, fucked. Nobody cares about their neighbors, their community, their nation (or at least very few people). I attribute it to money, which is so blatantly displayed by "celebrities," not to mention government functionaries and anybody who has it, that what money can buy becomes all that anyone cares about. If some part of our country worked (like for instance our Congress, those we pay and pay very well to represent us), laws could change some of this. Laws about taxes, say, laws about guns, and laws about health and education. It does appear, from all the polls, that ordinary Americans want a better system; they want single-payer health care, they want better public education, lower college tuition, they want stimulus to the economy so everyone can get a job (and a job that pays enough to live on). But alas, they have no idea of how to get those things, since the concerns of ordinary Americans cut very little ice with the craven officials who run our government, despite elections. He who pays the piper calls the tune. Have we forgotten that old saw? And it's the rich who pay their way into everything and who get their way throughout the country.
Sunday, May 11, 2014
HAPPY MOTHERS' DAY Reaffirming Julia Ward Howe’s Mother’s Day Vision Julia Ward Howe offered her Mother’s Day Proclamation to the world in 1870. Her dream was the establishment of an international Mothers’ Day Festival dedicated to the cause of nonviolent resolution of conflict and international solidarity among all women. Her pacifist consciousness had been provoked by the bloodshed of the Franco-Prussian War. Her activism was cultivated in the struggles for abolition of slavery and the quest for women’s suffrage. She had the proclamation translated into French, Spanish, Italian, German, and Swedish, working for the establishment of Mother’s Day in concert with women internationally celebrating peace and women’s empowerment. .... Here is the text of her 1870 Mother’s Day Proclamation, so prescient in its understanding, so courageous in its call, so plaintive in its currency nearly a century and a half later. Arise then…women of this day! Arise, all women who have hearts! Whether your baptism be of water or of tears! Say firmly: “We will not have questions answered by irrelevant agencies, Our husbands will not come to us, reeking with carnage, For caresses and applause. Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn All that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience. We, the women of one country, Will be too tender of those of another country To allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs.” From the voice of a devastated Earth a voice goes up with Our own. It says: “Disarm! Disarm! The sword of murder is not the balance of justice.” Blood does not wipe our dishonor, Nor violence indicate possession. As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil At the summons of war, Let women now leave all that may be left of home For a great and earnest day of counsel. Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead. Let them solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means Whereby the great human family can live in peace… Each bearing after his own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar, But of God - In the name of womanhood and humanity, I earnestly ask That a general congress of women without limit of nationality, May be appointed and held at someplace deemed most convenient And the earliest period consistent with its objects, To promote the alliance of the different nationalities, The amicable settlement of international questions, The great and general interests of peace.