Wednesday, January 25, 2017

I Did Not March.

*Disclaimer! This is not a post about my kids/family/husband. These are my views...not Jack's, Beau's or Matt's. Although, I'm pretty sure Beau would give everyone on both sides of this debate the middle finger and ask when the food is arriving*


I know you will attack me on my points. I understand the passion on these topics as some of these impact the very life that we hold dear. I welcome constructive and respectful debate on any of these topics. I welcome that debate in person or via PM. I will not get into a comments war with you as that serves no purpose. I will not tolerate hateful commentary either, so if that’s your intent – go away. You guys marched. I write blogs/commentary to give a voice to the side that doesn't march.

Someone telling me that I can’t do something gets me FIRED UP. This is America, for God’s sake…we should be able to do anything within reason that doesn’t harm another living being. I’m ALL FOR a march and a protest that proves a point and creates positive momentum for change. I love that many of you took your kids to these marches to show them what democracy and our right to assemble is all about. Makes me burst with pride for our Country to see you teaching your kids about our Constitution.

What I’ve learned the most through this political season is that maybe I’m lucky. (Maybe that’s what you guys call “privileged?”) Maybe I’m lucky to have a set of parents that instilled values in me to work for everything that I want. Afterall, if it’s worth having – it’s worth working for. Am I right? (#amirite?)

I don’t believe I was handed anything or provided some amazing opportunity that no one else had. I have a public high school education. I earned scholarships to pay for my public state college education (that so many of you have either seriously or jokingly deemed “poor quality”). After that, I got a job…which is what you’re supposed to do. I worked my way up from being a computer programmer – to being a partner and a leader.

Maybe that’s why I’m so confused about this march. What is it that you folks want that we/you don’t already have?

The world is our oyster!

We can educate ourselves in any school in the world. We can vote, work, own property, own animals, own our own businesses…hell, we even have federally funded special programs and services for minority owned businesses.

We can even marry each other now if we want.

We can be on boards, be CEOs, be inventors and investors…and even the President of the United States if we so choose to subject ourselves to that experience.

…or we can roll around on stages grabbing our private parts and offering sexual favors to Hillary voters.

Like I said, the world is our oyster. Every ounce of our constitution offers that right to every human being – man or woman, regardless of color or sexual orientation.

So what rights do we not have?

Is this about birth control and a woman’s right to choose? I get that to some degree – and I’m also not naïve that everyone feels differently about this issue. This is where I start to be torn because I want women to have the right to choose, but my religious belief on this topic means that I hope that all babies are born unless there’s a traumatic issue at stake (e.g., rape victims). Most states offer victim medical funding for these situations now anyway.  However, I’ll tell you this – I don’t want to pay for your birth control, your abortion for convenience and your food stamps when you have the baby(ies) that you can’t afford. You know what else? If you have time to have sex, then you have time to go to work to pay for your OWN condoms and birth control. Birth control is not the responsibility of the government…just like I don’t think it’s the responsibility of our government to tell you that you can’t have an abortion. Pro-life is my religious belief – but it’s not necessarily my political belief. (see how I get sideways pretty quickly?) So, we’ve elected a pro-life President…so what? The birth control is still readily available to all of us. So, the Planned Parenthood federal funding is drying up…so what?  Maybe Cecile Richards should take a pay cut to pay for everyone’s abortions because that’s the only difference (that everyone is discussing) between a government funded health department and Planned Parenthood.

Am I making sense here?

Let’s talk about this wage gap. We can do and make whatever we want in this Country – and if you’ve lost the art of negotiation, then you probably don’t believe that. I’ve never earned less than a man with the same amount of responsibility as me that is performing to the same level. Trust me on this. I out-earn most men I know…and that’s not by chance, folks. I value my skills and what I bring to the table – and unless you do also, you will continue to be underpaid. That’s on YOU…not our government or any President we’ve ever elected. This has been an issue for many, many, many years and somehow we’ve made Trump the reason for all of this? Stop looking for a hand out or some law to protect you and make a case for yourself and your skills.

Is this thing on?

Let’s discuss your way of marching… You guys put vaginas on your heads and made signs about “p***y roaring.” That’s great. That’s just great, folks. Is this how you’re asking for respect? (Respect that you already had, yet probably lost on Saturday.) Speaking of respect, help me understand how it’s ok for Bill Clinton to be sexually serviced in the Oval Office by an intern…and it’s ok for Madonna to offer HER sexual services to Hillary voters …. AND, it’s ok for Bill Clinton to publicly undress Ivanka with his eyes while standing next to his wife…yet you hold Trump to a different standard for his words that were recorded about grabbing p***y. (God, I hate that word.) And, for those of you shocked by his words – get a grip on reality. Your significant other has said something similar behind closed doors. I guarantee it.

What’s the term you guys use…double standard?

Maybe you’re marching because you don’t like President Trump’s choices for his administration? Like the Secretary of Education? I can see that point. She doesn’t think like you guys, so I understand your disdain…but that’s not what the rest of us hear when you’re wearing vaginas on your head and shouting #NotMyPresident.

Maybe you’re concerned because of what you think President Trump may do to the ACA in terms of caps and pre-existing conditions. I can see that point too, but that’s not what the rest of us hear when you’re wearing vaginas on your head and shouting #NotMyPresident. Some of us are worried about what happens if this current plan continues. What about us?

Maybe you’re concerned about our environment. I can see that point. I am too…but that’s not what the rest of us hear – and trust me, we are trying to listen. And because I’m also concerned, I’m taking a different approach – because no one can HEAR YOU when you’re wearing vaginas on your head and shouting #NotMyPresident.

The march wasn’t about feminism…or wage gaps…or abortions…or “hate speech.” The march was about you being angry that you lost. The march was about creating fear. The march was about accusing Donald Trump of taking something that he has no plans of taking – your rights. (#BlameTrump?) If you don’t know what to tell your daughters about this election – that’s a parenting problem – not a Presidential problem. Teach your daughters to have a thick skin, to think for themselves, to take up for themselves and to have a good grasp on reality. The last thing we need is another generation of victims.

And before you start – Illegal immigrants don’t have the same rights as citizens. That’s the law – and now you’re mad that Trump is going to start enforcing that law because “they are humans too.” I’m not naïve to the fact that you choose to use that language to make it appear that Republicans (including me) don’t care about immigrants as human beings. This is where you are wrong. I’m ALL FOR immigrants in America - - it makes our Country a better place. But if you’re going to live here, drive on these roads, go to these public schools, enjoy these public parks – then you are going to get a VISA, get a green card and/or become a citizen and pay taxes and help our country flourish – just like the rest of us. Because, just like I don’t like paying for everyone else’s healthcare, birth control and food stamps – I also don’t like paying for your livelihood.

None of my statements above mean that I don’t want equality for all women and minority men and our LGBTQ community.  I believe #BlackLivesMatter.  I believe that #LoveWins.  I believe that women and minority men need special programs in order to afford these minority groups the same opportunities of non-minority men. I genuinely love all types of people and walks of life – my career has done a nice job of confirming that for me over the years. I want our government to enable minorities to do whatever makes US happy – just not ALL at my expense.

I can’t with you guys. If you’re mad, say you’re mad…and either shut up or learn how to have a conversation about it all. I’m ready when you are, but allowing someone like Madonna and Ashley Judd to speak for you with their out-of-touch nonsense just makes you look crazy. And no one likes crazy… In fact, these women of Hollywood…who get paid MILLIONS speaking for ANY of us is just plain NUTS.

#TheyDontSpeakForMe

You will hear directly from me the MOMENT I feel oppressed or like someone is taking a God granted or Constitutional right away from me or my family

10 comments:

  1. "Teach your daughters to have a thick skin, to think for themselves, to take up for themselves and to have a good grasp on reality." The last part of this sentence, "take up for themselves and ... have a good grasp on reality" is rarely articulated and is so important in the creation of a population of Americans (male and female) who can better our country, show resiliency and actually contribute to humanity instead of expecting humanity to give them something. America has been trending in a downward spiral since the WWII generation because of this lack of resiliency and inability or unwillingness to accept reality. America has laws. You have to work to have funds for food, shelter, medical care, college educations. This is nothing new yet there seems to be generations of Americans now who can't accept this reality and, in turn, turn to the government to provide these things and are angered when asked to do what is necessary to achieve these things. I don't know what the answer is but the core of the problem needs to be spotlighted. Thank you for doing that so well and articulately. And I concur with you. Wearing vaginas on one's head and making signs and shouting about "pussies" is not a civilized dialogue for airing grievances or beginning constructive dialogue. Yet I'm afraid that's indicative of where we stand as Americans in 2017...and it's a sad place to be.

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  2. This has been very well thought out and nicely written. You have voiced, everything that I have had on my mind and heart. For the last few days. I am a mother of two children and two grandchildren. Raising my two children on my own. I take that back, I had a great deal of help from God and my family. At times I worked a full time job and two part time job. While raising my children. Both of my children were on the honor roll through high school and both attended college after high school. My son was in the military and had deployed twice. My point is that however I raised two productive children. I will say that when all this Women's Lib had started, way back when. They truly think they took things a little too far. Many, many times through all of this. I had wished for a husband that was committed to he's family. I would of been more than happy too be a stay at home mom. Doing everything I could to make my family's life wonderful. Once again thank you for your words. YOU NAILED IT!!

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  3. Love this. Great job and thank you for sharing.

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  4. I marched on Saturday for many reasons one being the cabinet appointments that I strongly disagree with. I can honestly say of all the people I physically saw in Denver, Colorado I did not see one person with a vagina costume or anything of the like outside of a pink kitted hat. While people at the marches across the country did have these costumes on it was not anywhere near the majority. It's like indicating everyone at a Trump rally had a KKK regalia on, which is not true for the majority but for some did for sure that media brought forward.
    I truly hope to have educated and insightful conversations with people who see favor and opportunity overall for our country. But I hope we start the conversations without saying "you all" or "you guys" and lumping in what media portrays as truth to what we truly stand for when we feel our country is moving in the wrong direction. I have been a registered independent my entire adult life and I am not burned that Hilary did not win but I am burned that so many things I love about our country will be taken away or changed unnecessarily and that lies or "alternative facts" will potentially now be our norm. I beg for honest, respectful and truth in conversation about where we go now-I appreciate your openess about wanting that too. But I hope those of us that did march are not dismissed by those who chose to voice their stance in costume (they may have a deeper reason we do not know about-no judgement without conversation with those that did).

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    1. Please excuse my typos!! Typed on a phone

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  5. Oh man. I wish we could sit down and have a conversation about this. I respect your opinions, I appreciate that you wrote them out as succinctly as you have, and I understand them on an ideological level. I also disagree with them. I promise I'm not here to troll. Just opening the door for discourse. I respect your points a lot!

    If you'll allow me to counter with some (long-winded, please forgive me) thoughts:

    I hear you about the 'vaginas as hats' argument. Yes, it's a bit sideways in a "men marching with penis hats wouldn't be taken seriously, so why should we take this seriously" kind of way. The vagina stuff isn't really my style, either. That said, I'd like to do my best to explain a few reasons for why this angle may have been so widely embraced. (1) Trump's remarks about grabbing p***y (I'll get to your notes on that in a sec) are particularly aggressive in a way that a man getting a consensual blow-job, looking at a woman lustfully, or offering consensual sex (Madonna) is not. (not saying those things are great either) But "GRABBING p***y" triggered a lot of women who have been assaulted. So, many women reacted with p***y paraphernalia in response to that (a la: "you can't grab mine!") .. (2) women have long-since felt that their bodies are inherently meant to be considered shameful. Vaginas are considered “gross” because they bleed now and again. We don't even like the word p***y. But words are words, why should it matter? We aren’t grossed out by all the names for male genitalia. We’re grossed out by words that depict gross things. And we are brought up to believe that our lady parts are dirty. But we all know... male parts are just as dirty, haha. So, the difference between how men are conditioned to behave (it's okay if they are dirty dogs) and how women are conditioned to behave (they better be clean and nice) is not equal. The shock-value of using the 'unclean' vagina in an attempt to normalize it (and as an "F you" to the notion that we are supposed to think our own body parts are gross) speaks to that more nuanced feeling of inequality. (Not saying it's the government's place to regulate the cultural norms... but it stinks when the government is perpetuating it).

    My point is that I do think the march was very much founded on feminism. As for losing—I don't think it's that simple. Yes, a lot of people were upset that we "lost"—but we've lost before (and we are no strangers to misogynists in the White House) and we've never seen a turnout like that. I'm not sure we're sore losers as much as we are terrified that Trump is out to TAKE AWAY our rights (you asked what rights we don't have—I don't think the women who marched would argue that we currently have rights... I think they’d argue that they're afraid those rights will be rescinded. Trump has proven a desire to take away first amendment rights from the press, National Parks, Nasa, other programs he wants to dismantle (PS. all those programs TOGETHER only cost Americans an average of $22/year in taxes, so not even that big of a win for people?), and he jailed journalists who were simply covering protests on his inauguration—so I don't think it's far-fetched to assume that he's not really interested in protecting civil rights in any capacity. I also believe he's interested in dismantling the public school system to keep the poor "in their place" by not offering adequate resources for kids who can't afford to pay for private school. His choice for Secretary of Education leads me to believe this is true, but only time will tell.

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    1. Last bit:

      I'm curious what your feelings are about the Secretary of Education decision? I have a feeling you walk the line of wanting government to stay out of most of our business... is that true? If so, I respect that and can't argue that ideology—but do your opinions on this apply to education? Do you feel all schools should be privatized?

      Also genuinely curious re: the ACA hurting you. How is it hurting you? I wasn't aware it was hurting anyone and find that disconcerting.

      Last thing: the Clinton vs Madonna vs Trump debate. I touched on this earlier, but I struggle with your point, "And, for those of you shocked by his words – get a grip on reality. Your significant other has said something similar behind closed doors. I guarantee it." This one is difficult to debate because I don't actually know what all men say behind closed doors. So, I can't prove anything. And I know that BOTH men and women talk their fair share of "locker room talk." I get that men and women are going to dish about all the pretty things they'd like to touch. It's human nature, to an extent. But there's a classy way to express your interests ("oooh girl, what I wouldn't like to do to him!") and a trashy way to do it ("I dun' want to force myself on that B! I don't care if she likes it!") In my opinion, Trump's banter was the absolute trashiest. And if my husband heard a guy say that in a locker room, I know him well enough to know that he'd be like, "wow, this guy is taking this way too far" and forever label him a d-bag. (see? even feminine products are dirty swear-words! haha). It’s the trashy style that speaks to his character. (And, honestly, the measure of that statement as it pertains to his character is only compounded by all of the other blatantly insecure, unstable, and hypocritical statements he’s made in tandem. The p***y grabbing is only one piece.)

      That's not me trying to write off Clinton's misogyny. The dude was a dog. But he's kind of irrelevant now. I feel the comparison to him is rather tired. Mostly because I think MANY U.S. Presidents, both Democrat and Republican, have abused their power when it comes to sexual indulgence. I don't think any of it is right. But again, I believe the issue is cultural ("boys will be boys!") and hopefully if women continue to be treated with more respect—as many of us younger career women are treated better than our mothers were—the "old dogs" will age out and eventually we'll have male leaders who are a little classier with their locker room banter.

      Re: Madonna, I didn't hear her speech, but agree that from what I have heard it wasn't helpful, haha.

      I know I didn't cover everything, but those are the issues that are dearest to me.

      I really do want to thank you for sharing your thoughts. I hope none of what I said came off as offensive. I appreciate and respect your views and only wish I could dig deeper!

      Thank you for allowing me the space for healthy debate! My best to you and yours.

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    2. THANK YOU for your kind, thoughtful and intelligent response. I love it. I'm going to dig into it later after work...and offer some additional thoughts. You can find me on FB if chatting there may be easier! Thanks again - Dondi

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  7. Who do you work for and how are you publicly taking a political stance on topics if you are "head of diversity"? The company you work for must not contain any sort of code of ethics. Your point of views seem very entitled which is the opposite of inclusion and diversity. Unbelievable.

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