Dear Leaders of these United States

Dear:

President Obama, Vice President Biden, Speaker Ryan, House Minority Leader Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader McConnell, Senate Minority Leader Reid, RNC, DNC, Secretary Clinton, Mr. Trump

CC:  PBS, NPR, CBS, ABC, CNN, MSNBC, FOX

So, here we are.

I know that you all must be frustrated and tired.  So am I.  The history of how we got here is important, but I do not care right now.  Everyone is at fault.  Instead of pointing fingers at past mistakes, let us move forward.

What I ask may be especially hard for those in the House.  Their districts have been carved in such a manner as to make it difficult for them to appear to be cooperative with the opposing party.  Be assured, no matter your place on the political spectrum, you can speak with a civil tongue.

Words matter.  The words of our leaders have the power to spread division and hate.  They also have the power to spread hope and understanding.  Choose wisely.

I see the abuse you take on social media and on TV.  “Liberal” and “conservative” should not be used as insults and I wish those were the worst labels that people used.

The arms race of rhetoric can only serve to further divide us.  

We are all family.  Siblings can disagree but there must always be that foundation of love for our family.

Please state your views.  Use logic and reasoning to honestly explain why you believe so strongly in your views.  Then stop.  Resist the temptation to blame others for a problem.  Resist the temptation to throw a sarcastic jab.

After you are done speaking, the hardest part of your job begins.

Listen with the intention of understanding

Negotiations between political parties in these United States should NOT be as difficult as negotiations between Israel and Palestine.

I believe this country to be both strong and precious.  I have deep respect for the country and I respect you, the elected leaders.

I ask that that you conduct yourselves as if you respect the elected leaders.

Before you decide to announce that “Democrats are ______” or “Republicans are ______”, please remember that you are about to insult roughly half the citizenry. 

Gentle men and gentle ladies, I ask for your leadership.  

Thank you for your service.

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What Bugs Me About Lyme Disease

Lyme disease: n.  An inflammatory disease caused by a spirochete (Borrelia burgdorferi) that is transmitted by ticks, usually characterized initially by a rash followed by flulike symptoms including fever, joint pain, and headache. (from the freedictonary)

After hours of online and book reading, I will attempt to summarize what has stuck in my brain.  Please comment with any additional information or possible corrections.  I will add links at the bottom of this post for those of you who wish to begin your own fact finding mission.  Caution:  “facts” about Lyme seem to be fuzzy.  Answers seem to hinge on who you ask.

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They Fought, You Vote

Why having the right to vote should not be taken for granted.

1787:  Passage of the U.S. Constitution gives white male property owners over 21 the right to vote

1870:  The 15th Amendment guarantees the voting rights of all men over 21 regardless of race or ethnic background

1920:  The 19th Amendment gave women over 21 the right to vote. Continue reading

Rocks in the Melting Pot

The danger of being an idealist is that you will have your heart broken. Everyone, including myself, falls short of the ideal on many occasion. When people seem to intentionally choose a less than ideal path, it can take the air out of me.

We live in a grand melting pot of different cultures, ideas, religions, and lifestyles. It seems as though people have been throwing rocks into the melting pot to try to keep us separated and from uniting to form a wonderful mix. I can make of juice out of foods I do not like: kale, pears, beets, parsley, chard and lemon. A wonderful symphony of nutrition and taste appear in my glass. So it is with ideas. No one person always has the best answer. We need to draw on the knowledge and experience of one another to create the the ideal symphony.

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