Posts Tagged ‘Barack Obama’

The South doesn’t do snow.

Bob and I were supposed to be Grandparenting this morning, but the temperature plummeted and ice is supposed to turn into snow, so the Grands are home from school with the Groom. He is a great Dad and told us he can work from home; also pancakes are his specialty!

And in light of the racist slurs that came from Mr T yesterday, I made Bob sit down on the couch this morning and put Netflix on his iPad. I heard that President Obama was going to be David Letterman’s first guest on his new gig, “My Next Guest”¬†https://www.netflix.com/title/80209096

Cue the bluebirds. We laughed, we even teared up a little, as we listened to Obama talk about bringing his oldest to college. They were having fun with each other and when Letterman told him he really respected Obama – as a man – and embraced him, I felt so much longing for those days. For a President that could make me dream again.

So it was a bittersweet interview, because I miss that man, and nobody mentioned Mr T at ALL. Which was refreshing, but in his absence, in his void, lies uncertainty. Like children of alcoholic parents, we the American people never know what to expect from his mouth or his Twitter fingers. We were getting so close to a deal on DACA yesterday, that I have to think Mr T’s racist remarks were calculated for his base. Just another bright shiny object to deflect the press. We already knew he was a bigoted nationalist, now I wonder if this president is either terribly sinister, stupid, or suffering from Alzheimer’s. https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/12/trump-denies-he-called-countries-s–holes-rejects-senators-daca-deal.html

I did not, will not and could not watch Mr T sign a proclamation for Martin Luther King Day earlier. Instead, to commemorate Dr King’s life, I hauled myself out to the outskirts of ¬†Davidson County and registered myself to vote in TN. And I have an idea about what to do on Monday. I will print off voter registration forms and leave them at our local coffee shop.

I recently left a book there with a post-it that said, “Free book from your local Book Fairy.” In Ireland they have a Book Fairy group that does this all the time, and you’re supposed to try and do it without being caught. Yesterday I noticed someone had left another free book in their window. It felt so good to know a mitzvah was being paid forward.

It should not be so hard to vote in this democracy. That bears repeating, “IT SHOULD NOT BE SO HARD TO VOTE IN THE USA!!” President Obama talked about strengthening the habits of the heart; the more we help others, extend our hands and really connect with others, the more we advance our democracy and our own humanity.

My Nana had a saying, “When you throw your toast out on the water, it comes back with jelly on it.”




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Pro-Life and Pro-Gun is an oxymoron

Lots of early voting has been going on, lots of absentee ballots. Tomorrow is the day, and I don’t believe the polls. Only one third of cell phone-only owners were called; and who only owns smart phones and can do without land lines? Right, young people. I don’t know anyone under 40 who uses a land line. No one.

But if you didn’t vote early, know your rights tomorrow. I’m in TN with the Bride who already voted early. She said the Latino man in line in front of her was denied the right to vote because he didn’t have the necessary photo ID. In TN, you can show your concealed hand gun permit in order to vote, but not your student ID. You can show your gun permit, even if it has expired!

Let’s get out the vote people. If you believe that legislators have no goddamn business trying to eradicate Roe vs Wade; if you believe that religious ideology has no place in our public policy; if you believe that health care is a fundamental human right – then you better get out there tomorrow and pull that lever. or touch that screen.

If your normal polling place is out of power, then find out where you can vote. We do need to take back our country, we need to overturn Citizens United and give it back to the people. I, for one, do not want to go back to the 50s. Let’s go forward.

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My Mother, the Flapper was also known as Grandma Gi. In order to provide for her family, she worked as a bookkeeper for many years. Widowed three times, she adored President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In fact, his picture hung in our kitchen, right next to the Crucifix. When she traveled to the Berkshires to help me with the newborn Bride, she was a retired 70 year old. Because Gi was a radically committed, life-long smoker, and Dr Bob knew about the hazards of second-hand smoke before the Surgeon General, she was banished to the porch for her bi-hourly habit. Now Septembers can get mighty cold in MA. This is why you see her holding my baby, over 30 years ago, wearing a face mask. Gi, aka the Flapper, had contracted pneumonia and had to return to her Condo on the Lake.

Lucky for me, I never smoked and my only banishment, while visiting the new Love Bug, was to my beautifully appointed, upstairs suite for sleep. I’m recounting those first few days in Nashville, because yesterday I had lunch with friends and happily offered up the replay. How I looked into my Grand Daughter’s eyes and saw the Bride. Like a beautiful work of art, after decades of overpaint, varnish, dirt and maybe even cigarette smoke is removed by a master restorer, I could glimpse the brush strokes of the original artist. Dark, and soulful, inquisitive and beckoning, her eyes spoke to me. And looking back through the lens of time, I could feel the steely determination of my Mother, to walk again when she was told she would be in a wheelchair for life. The utter devotion of my Nana, who held me tight, saving my life when a drunk driver rammed into our car in 1949. The unequivocal righteousness of my Great Grandmother, who sheltered coal miners and marched for their rights, even though she herself could not yet vote. Little Love Bug, I am happy to report that our President is soaring ahead in the polls on the women’s vote in this battleground state.

And it’s not just because the President knows our Constitution backwards and forwards, and wants to keep government and religion separate, thereby protecting our reproductive rights. “Women registered voters trust Obama more than they do Romney to handle the economy, 52 to 39 percent.” FDR came from a wealthy family, yet he understood that government needs to care for 100% of its citizens and he almost singlehandedly pulled our country out of the Great Depression. I’m thinking I may have to frame a picture of Obama for our kitchen. L’Shana Tovah to our Jewish friends and family too.

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“Not everything that glitters is gold.” That’s my Rocker on the acoustic to the right, doing some harmony. And yes, a certain hockey team licensed it – go TPM!!

And unless you were unconscious this week, you must have heard about President Obama’s Dream Act. Bypassing our do-nothing Congress, Obama finally proposed that we stop deporting children whose only crime was that they happened to arrive on our shores via their undocumented parents. If you are under 30 years old… – well here are the criteria:

Came to the United States under the age of 16.
Have continuously resided in the United States for at least five years preceding the date of the memorandum and are present in the United States on the date of the memorandum.
Are currently in school, have graduated from high school, have obtained a general education development certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States.
Have not been convicted of a felony offence, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise poses a threat to national security or public safety.
Are not above the age of 30.

“Now they will be able to request temporary relief from deportation proceedings; and will also be allowed to apply for authorization to work in this country.” http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2012/06/the-dream-order-is-another-reason-for-congress-to-act-on-immigration/258653/ I’ve always thought it was strange you could serve our country in the Armed Forces while being illegal, right? It’s like signing up the Irish off the boat to fight in the Civil War.

The day it happened I stopped at Whole Foods and told the cashier and a manager who were admiring my grocery tote with a picture of Michelle Obama on a swing. Quite often I feel as if I’ve entered an Anne Tyler novel whenever I enter Whole Foods. I said, “Did you hear what her husband did today?” And honest to God, they stopped what they were doing, got tears in their eyes, and goose bumps on their arms. We almost had a hootenanny moment together.

But hey, what if you happened to arrive in the good ole USA at 18? Or maybe you just turned 31…I’m not so sure this dream act is enough, but it’s a start. And here’s to our nation of immigrants. Where the son of a Kenyan, a mixed race man from Hawaii can become President, and the great-great-grandson of Miles and Elizabeth Romney, Mormon converts from England, can challenge him.

Mitt would rather trace his roots to Mexico, where his English ancestors were sheltered when polygamy became outlawed. Funny how we don’t hear about the dreams of his fathers. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18422949 Listen up Trump – here’s a birth certificate!

Keep dreamin

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