Ok so yes, I know... It has been over a month since my last post. What can I say? I go in spurts when it comes to blogging. I'm not quite sure why because I am generally just chock full of hot air. I've had plenty to say in some groups I belong to on facebook but I think by the time I sit down to write an actual blog about the subject matter I feel that I have gotten it out of my system already and just don't feel like re-hashing the issue. Well, I'm pretty sure there is more in me on these matters so this entry will consist of a sort of hodge podge of talking points and my thoughts on the issues at hand. Some will be taken directly from what I said in my original comments in these groups and I'm sure I will add more to them as I get into the heart of it all. Here goes...
Issue #1- Pertains to a comment made on a local news station fb page regarding a local 69-year old man who was charged with having child porn on his computer and traveling overseas to have sex with children. Now, you'd think that all the responses to this story would be disgust and disbelief. Well, you'd all think wrong then I guess. There was a man on there, who's profile picture showed him holding what appeared to be his young daughter in his arms, who took issue with the fact that this man was being punished for a crime that he committed in another country. What right did we have, he asked, to charge a man for what may not even be a crime in that country? Maybe that country has a different definition of children! He followed this, of course, with a disclaimer that by no means did he condone this man's behavior or the fact that he had kiddie porn on his computer. I'm sorry but, seriously??? Is this guy mental? When I questioned him as to whether he thought that if he and that beautiful little girl in his arms were visiting a different country, and she was raped, it would be OK because maybe she wasn't a child in that countries' eyes... and they would be in a different country after all. His response was, "who said anything about rape?" Uh.... is this man daft? SEX with any CHILD in ANY country is RAPE. Dumbass. Of course there were several people talking about various forms of (rather painful) punishment that the perpetrater should be put through which was to be expected on a story like this. This guy then came back on just absolutely appalled that people were saying such horrible things about the accused man.
This was my final response to him: "OK D, I'll break this down so it's easy for you to understand: In your first comment you questioned whether having sex with a child was perhaps legal in the country this guy went to to do so; so it was pointed out to you that sex in ANY country with ANY child is wrong whether it is "legal" in that country or not. You in turn, in your second comment, questioned the validity of the children in the other country being actual "children" and that the word "rape" was never used. It was then pointed out to you that yes, sex with CHILDREN is considered RAPE. So now finally, in your more recent comments, you have taken to defending this man, rather vehemently might I add, and lambasting those who have suggested some rather nasty punishments. Perhaps the killing comments are taking things a bit far not knowing all the facts as you say, but I wonder if it was your child (the one in your picture) that these atrocities were committed against if you would want to do those same things to that man. And you are correct when you say that, in this country we are (supposed to be) presumed innocent until proven guilty. However, I'm wondering why you are defending this guy with so much passion... And the only conclusion(s) I can come to are that 1- you are subconsciously defending your own inner demons and urges or 2- you just want to play devils advocate to get a bunch of people riled up on the internet for your amusement. For your sake, I hope it is the latter rather than the former." I just don't get the mentality of some people in this world....
Issue #2- Pertains to the extension of unemployment benefits and the overwhelming stereotype that everyone drawing unemployment are lazy, good for nothing deadbeats who don't want a job. First of all, if someone is receiving unemployment it means that they WORKED and paid in to those benefits and have EARNED them. Secondly, in order to draw unemployment the person can not have just quit their job or have been fired for doing something wrong. Third, there is a huge misconception that those who draw unemployment don't want to work. While there are those that fit that bill (of course), most people who have worked before (prerequisite number 1 for drawing benefits) would like to continue being contributing members of society. Part of my job is assisting people with disabilities to get jobs so I KNOW how difficult it is out there to get a job, particularly for the clientele that we serve in the organization I work for. So until all you folks who are griping about people being a drain on our economy by drawing unemployment, think about all the people out there like the clients that I serve who WANT TO WORK. One more thing, where do you think those unemployment checks go? Back into the economy maybe? (groceries, utilities, clothing, etc.)
Someone pointed out to me that "the fact of the matter is, that until we stop paying for people that aren't here in the country legally(education, health, food) & worry about our own.. until we stop racking up debt like it is nothing, until we start bringing jobs back home to the US instead of allowing them to be shipped overseas at cheaper rates.. nothing is going to change!! How about tax cuts for small businesses, how about helping out the little guys that actually create the jobs?? Things will never change until those things start to happen & Obama ain't the one to do it, he has shown that!! All he is doing is mounting more debt than he can ever spend his way out of & going on vacation!!!". Well, while I agree that those things are problems, I suspect that my reasoning behind how we have gotten to those places in our country, as well as the methods I feel would fix those problems, would differ slightly from the person who posted that comment. Libs/Dems said the same thing about Bush going on vacation all the time as the Cons/Reps say about Obama now. That will never change. I personally feel that these problems started WAY before Obama took office and cannot be fixed overnight (duh)-- and not in just two years either. Perhaps not even in his first term. I also feel that in order for Obama to be able to enact changes to these problems, the Cons/Reps in congress have to quit being petulant children who just say "no" to everything they are presented with instead of counteracting with viable alternatives to those options. The problem is, neither side wants to give and unfortunately, we will never live in a partisan country. But that is beside the point. Regardless of all of those other things that most definitely need to be addressed, why should the hard working AMERICAN CITIZENS who have paid into the system suffer? I completely agree that we need to take care of our own first (notice I said FIRST, not ONLY). However, everyone who keeps saying that seems to be against anything that DOES take care of our own (health care, unemployment, regulating certain industries to keep American citizens from being taken advantage of). I just don't get it. You can't have things both ways. And how do we take care of our own? Um... I think taxes.
Then there are those who continually say that there are jobs out there and that if people aren't getting them they aren't trying hard enough. As someone who, along with my staff, looks at the jobs available on a daily basis for the clients my organization serves, I can tell you that yes, we see those jobs. Unfortunately the applicant pool is so large that sometimes we have been just 1 of up to 700 other applicants. So it's not as easy as people seem to think it is. Yes, there ARE jobs out there, but NO, there aren't enough for everyone looking for a job to get one. just one example: We have someone who was making 6 figures (he was laid off from a local hospital- worked with their computer billing system there) being turned away from jobs for being over-qualified. He has applied for stocking jobs, fast food, store clerk, etc. And just yesterday, he offered to work for someone for free until they could find a spot for him. Now tell me that someone like him deserves to have his unemployment benefits stopped. As long as we have clients like that, I will continue to advocate for people receiving the benefits that they have EARNED as contributing members of our society. They shouldn't have to pay for the bad apples who milk the system (and who are not as prevalent as some people would like us to think).
Issue #3- The billboard linking Obama to Hitler as referenced in this article. I love how Obama followers are constantly being acused of "drinking the kool-aid" when clearly, it is the Tea Partiers that need to be checking the content of their tea... But hey, more power to em'. It's crazy stuff like this that is going to help the Dems keep a hold of Congress in November... On a side note- when I clicked on the link from my original post on facebook back on July 14th, the article linked to this story had been changed. The article was previously entitled: "Billboard linking Obama, Hitler draws complaints" and painted a much crazier picture of Iowa Tea Partiers complete with crazy Tea Party quotes and all. Yes, the sign was taken down as this current article states; but not without a temper tantrum from Tea Partiers as the previous article illustrated. Hmmmm.... I wonder what happened to that???
Issue #4- The proposed Mosque to be built near the Ground Zero site and an ad paid for by Republicans that "refudiates" (get it? ;o)) the Mosque. The New Yorker Senior Editor, Amy Davidson, blogs about it here. OK Boys and girls... can you say "fear mongers"? How about "propaganda"? I wonder if people realize that the site for this oh-so-horrible-Mosque is TWO BLOCKS from the Ground Zero site. By protesting this you are saying that you don't support the 1st amendment. Period. Should we tear down the churches in Salem because "good Christians" were responsible for the murder of innocent men and women during the Salem witch trials? By the standard of which we are thinking currently churches should never have been built on the site. No? Well that is the message being sent by Conservatives folks. Saying all Muslims were responsible for the 9/11 tragedy is like saying that all Christians are responsible for any atrocities (and there have been many) committed "in the name of God". Isn't America supposed to be better than that? And as Marc pointed out in his post, no, Congress hasn't done anything because "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion". Duh.
Well, there ya have it folks... some of the issues that have been on my mind as of late and since my last posting. There are some other things I plan to blog about in the near future (some not even of a political/social nature even! :o)) but for now I think I will bid you all adieu and head out into the sunshine. Toodles my lovelies!