Posted in Fighting for the Good, Good Things, Word Therapy

Saturday Morning Cartoons: Find the Good

Smile at a stranger. Open the door for someone. Put that shopping cart away that is taking up a spot in an already busy parking lot. Hug the hell out of your loved ones. It’s week number 8 million into this rotten white house administration (they don’t deserve my capital letters) and I plan on finding the good and contributing some this weekend. Love you all.

Panic! At the Disco’s “The Greatest Show” cover from The Greatest Showman:

It’s possible I like this cover better than the original. Brendon Urie’s voice is made for musicals (and somebody please put his butt back on Broadway!)

Queen at Live Aid:

Have you seen Bohemian Rhapsody yet? It is a great film that ends with Freddie and the boys giving their iconic performance for Bob Geldof and the world. They were truly a gift.

Missing Link Laika movie trailer:

Coraline. Paranorman. Boxtrolls. Kubo and the Two Strings. All of these animated features are unique, have heart, and are more than just “kids’ films”. The new movie from Laika Studios is about a creature trying to find his family. The trailer made me giggle.

Tuba cover of Hamilton’s “You’ll Be Back”:

Covers of songs from the hit Broadway show continue to astonish me in the best way possible. Lin-Manuel Miranda himself shared this on Twitter this week and it gave me goosebumps.

I hope you find passion and happiness this weekend!

Posted in Fighting for the Good, Word Therapy

Please talk to at least one person about voting today

In March of 1999, I started as a customer service representative in a banking call center. Throughout the floor were tv monitors hanging from the ceiling. CNN was playing on each one with the news ticker scrolling continuously at the bottom, a reporter speaking on the current headlines, and “breaking news” always in some corner. In 2000, I watched George W. Bush win the presidential election over Al Gore (the results are debatable to this day). On September 11, 2001, I sat at my desk on the opposite side of the floor where I started and watched as the planes flew into the Twin Towers. I was talking to my Florida based boss on the phone as he told me, “Oh god, we are going to war.” During the summer of 2004 my husband and I walked through our local movie theater to see Michael Moore’s Farenheit 9/11 while being booed by other patrons. Five months later, Bush won the presidential election for a consecutive term. 12 years later we were stricken with fear when Donald Trump won the 2016 election. My hubby and I have lost relationships with family members and friends because of our political views. What are our views? We register as Democrats. We feel that the rights of the LGBTQ community and people of color are in dire need of support. We believe in climate change.

Did you know that in two important states right now voter suppression is happening? In Georgia where democrat Stacey Abrams is in contention for governor, there has been 53,000 voter registrations on hold due to Georgia’s “exact match” policy. This means that if the information in the Department of Driver database or the Social Security office doesn’t exactly match the voter registration, it won’t be processed. It has been reported that African Americans make up to 70 percent of these possible voters. And connected to this is her Republican opponent, Brian Kemp. He is the current secretary of state for Georgia and is in charge of enforcing the voter laws. You can read more about it here.

It is less than two weeks to the midterm election. Depending on your state you can still register to vote. If you have registered, can you vote early? Can you mail in your ballot? We mailed our ballots last week. The ballot was a little overwhelming but having all the information I needed in my hand (thanks Google! and Ballotpedia!) gave me no excuses.

I had a dream last night that my family and I were staying in an Airbnb and the next occupants came in before we left. They set up their stuff which included a Confederate Flag. I froze when I saw it. Terror set in. When I woke up, bombs had been sent to Hillary Clinton, President Barack Obama, the CNN offices, etc., etc. I want to smack the hell out of everybody that said I was overreacting when Cheeto Satan was elected.

We are keeping our heads down and not letting anything distract us. We are donating to those who need it. I mailed postcards to voters to get the word out. This election can change everything. Is there something you can do to help? THERE IS. Speak to at least one person today about voting. I am not saying to tell them who to vote for. Just the simple act of voting can change the direction of our country.

 

Posted in Fighting for the Good

Friday Favorite: Netflix’s Chasing Coral

Climate change is happening, no matter what Cheeto Satan says. And the ocean is currently bearing the brunt of the effects. Did you know that 50% of coral reefs have disappeared in the last 30 years? The new Netflix documentary Chasing Coral covers this and many other facts about why we should start caring about the planet and stop denying that climate change exists. The ocean terrifies me. The depth, the unknown, and its power all make me shake. But my fear for the planet is higher.

Richard Vevers was an English ad man who tired of the industry and realized he could be doing more than selling 2 or 3 ply toilet paper. He has been a diver since he was 16. He started to notice when he was diving that one of the sea creatures he loved, the weedy seadragon, were disappearing. This made him want to find out why they were dying and what else was being affected. He found that global warming is destroying the coral reefs. He assembled a team of divers and photographers including Zackery Rago to document this occurrence. They were able to put time lapse cameras into the water in more than 30 countries around the world. These locations included the Florida Keys, Airport Reef in American Samoa, and Hawaii.

Here are some factors to consider regarding coral reefs: 29% of the Great Barrier Reef disappeared in 2016 due to climate change. The ocean absorbs the warmth, which affects all living things that make it their home. Coral reefs absorb the temperature increase and become sick. They try to get rid of the sickness by pushing it out, which results in bleaching. The bleaching essentially leaves only the skeleton of the coral reefs. If the ocean didn’t absorb the warming, the average temperature on Earth would be 122 degrees. These coral reefs also supply food to one billion people and protect our beaches from extreme weather like hurricanes.

Towards the end of Chasing Coral the group of scientists and photographers present their findings and the effects of climate change on the ocean. The results were so extreme that it brought me to tears during the time lapse. The destruction of the reefs are so devastating that it is hard not to react. Not just because it will affect the human race, but because these reefs are a living, breathing thing that need to be saved. The passion and commitment these group of people have shown should not go unnoticed. It has moved me to continue to educate myself regarding this issue and do what I can to help.

Posted in Fighting for the Good

Why You Should Support Planned Parenthood

I didn’t follow my own advice recently and read the comments when a friend posted that she stands with Planned Parenthood. One of her friends said she doesn’t and ranted a bit about her tax dollars going towards abortions. I responded (LIKE A DUM DUM) and told her that if she doesn’t want to have an abortion, she shouldn’t have one. She ranted even more and I just ended the exchange by telling her that she isn’t going to change my mind and I won’t change hers (okay, okay, I did say something else but thought better of it and deleted the comment). But with the current White House administration, I believe it is very important to support Planned Parenthood as they are having their funds taken away. This doesn’t just mean abortions won’t be performed. It also means many other services will not be available to those who need it. And even those who think shutting Planned Parenthood down means abortions will go away are wrong.

First and foremost, I want to say that our federal tax dollars DO go towards abortions. But those abortions are done only in the case of rape, incest, and if the mother’s life is in danger. This is detailed in what is called the Hyde Amendment. As for other abortions, I still stand by my statement. If you don’t want one, don’t have one. But don’t pretend to know what somebody is going through who decides to have one.

Abortion is at the forefront of the news when you read about Planned Parenthood but that isn’t all they do. They also provide birth control, emergency contraception, general health care, HIV and LBTQ services, mens’ health services, education, pregnancy testing and services, STD testing/treatment/vaccines, and cancer screenings in addition to womens’ services. There are over 600 locations and they are there for more than 5 million adults and children each year.

Access to Planned Parenthood services keeps birth rates down. Texas has learned this the hard way. Back in 2011 they cut family budget planning by 67%. As as result, 80 Planned Parenthood clinics closed. That lead to an increase of 3.1 percent in abortions. You can read about it here.

So that’s my spiel. I am pro choice but I understand that abortion is a very hot topic and people not agreeing with them. But Planned Parenthood is not just about abortions. They provide so much more, especially for those that are low income. I hope this sheds some light on an organization that has been unnecessarily controversial in recent years (and for the love of all that is good, please don’t bring up baby parts). The need for Planned Parenthood is too great.