Friday, May 12, 2017

The News Is Not Depressing.

I see a lot of people talking about how the news is too depressing, and they're shutting it off and tuning out. I have a message for you:

The news is not depressing. Do we have a corrupt regime right now? It appears so. Did they collude with a hostile foreign power? Looks like they did. Are some members of congress helping them cover it up? Yeah, they probably are. Are they going down for it? Yes. Emphatically yes, they are going down. It's happening NOW.

Remember, from the first news of the Watergate break-in until Richard Nixon's resignation took THREE YEARS.

This is bigger than Watergate.

This is the most important time in modern American history. What happens in the next few years will determine the fate of the world. I'm not kidding. There are heroes, right now, courageously standing up to a powerful group of people who are trying to subvert American Democracy. These heroes say: "Oh, no you don't. NOT in America." Sally Yates. Jim Comey. John McCain. Members of the media are doing the same: Rachel Maddow, the Washington Post, the New York Times, The New Yorker and other heroic, insightful, hardworking reporters ALL THROUGH THE MEDIA are proving their indispensability to the American experiment. Pay attention. Every story is built on the basis of staffers and elected officials leaking information, risking their careers to fuel reporters' research into all the ways democratic laws and norms are being flouted. This is a massive effort of people all through the government and news media to expose an administration that is trying to be above the law.

And all those shady people backing them, the corporations and millionaires and billionaires who would gut our feeble health care system to create tax savings for themselves? They. Will. Lose.

They are not above the law. They will never be above the law. They are going down.

Repeat after me:
They're going down.

If you can, if your health allows, watch it as it happens. Don't hide from it. I'm telling you, we are living through some of the most inspiring, uplifting, important events in American history.

You don't want to miss this.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Are you a trans teen?

Are you feeling unwanted? Are you surrounded by ignorance? Is cruelty a part of your every day life? Has it been getting worse lately?

You just need to wait a little while.

Maybe you're a kid trapped in a small town with a narrow family, and you feel invisible, or worse, when you are visible, you're in danger. I cannot imagine how oppressive that must feel.

Just know that out there, somewhere, are your people, and you just need to hang onto your courage and make it until you can go out and find them.

They might be in New York, or San Francisco, or Miami Beach. They might be in Chicago or St. Louis, or New Orleans. When you are of age and free, and you've earned a little bit of your own money, you can buy a crappy car and load it up and go out looking for them.

Maybe they're in Columbia University. Maybe some of them are in the nearest state college. Maybe they're on a cruise ship or in Paris. When you find them, you will agree that the travels and adventures, and risks, and disappointments were worth it. They will recognize you, they will embrace you, they will say, "Honey. Me too." And you will be home. You will know self expression
and creativity and joyful abandon.

So just hang on. That moment is coming. It is in your future.

And when your new people welcome you, together you will know acceptance and love while you wait for this idiotic world to catch up to you.

I'm rooting for you.

In comments, if you are an older trans person, please leave a word of encouragement.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Letter to my Senator about Betsy DeVos

My senator's response to my email begging him not to confirm Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education: 

Dear Amy, 

Thank you for sharing your thoughts about the nomination of the U.S. Secretary of Education. It's good to hear from you. President Trump nominated Betsy DeVos to be the next U.S. Secretary of Education. Her confirmation hearing was held on January 17, 2017. The U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions extensively reviewed and debated her nomination. On January 31, 2017, the committee approved the nomination of Betsy DeVos by a vote of 12-11. Following the committee's review, I personally met with Betsy DeVos to discuss her views on a variety of education issues. I discussed with her the importance of a strong public education system, the unique challenges facing rural states and communities, as well as the need to ensure both opportunities and protections for students with disabilities. She committed to supporting public education, fully enforcing current federal laws, and providing flexibility to states. Following the discussion we had during our meeting, I believe she is dedicated to ensuring students received a quality education and returning the authority over education back to state and local control. 

Thanks again for sharing your thoughts with me. 

John Barrasso, M.D. United States Senator 

My Response to him: 

Dear Senator Barrasso, 

Your response might be comforting to me if I didn't know Betsy DeVos has literally not one iota of experience in the public school system, and that she is a huge donor to the Republican Party, as was Secretary Tillerson, who personally donated to your campaign. 

Look, I am sure you are a sincere public servant, and that you want to help Wyoming, but you must see this looks bad. In the long term, with DeVos at the head of a government office that affects parents' and children's lives in the most direct and personal way, if she messes up through incompetence or intent to disrupt public education, both of which seem eminently possible, this will have very real political repercussions for everyone who voted for her. I beg you to reconsider. 

Best, AKR