STAND UP AND BE COUNTED

STAND UP AND BE COUNTED

Stand up and be counted, stand up and be counted,
That’s what I had shouted and shouted, stand up and be counted.
But now, as I wake-up, even as I begin to scream,
I realize it was last night that it happened, and it was only a dream.

It’s because they outnumber us a million to one,
And, always at night, is when they seem to have won.
They shout and yell and bark, look there is no sun,
Signaling that in the dark, at night, is when they have their fun.

No thinking is allowed on those nights, when they dim all the lights,
To hide all of all the drinking, drugs and fights.
Which is what they want, this is when they score,
Hoping that it will eventually lead to an unholy war.

They want to hark back to the dark ages,
Where they would all be considered wits and sages.
They want us to believe in something that completely ignores,
The birth of Jesus Christ and all the world’s brutal wars.

Even now, this very day, in 2001,
They call for a leader like Attila the Hun.
For now that America is under attack,
They want to go back, way, way back.

They call for more blood, for revenge, let’s all go insane,
Let’s drop smart bombs, and let’s do it by plane.
Let’s bless the soldiers, the bullets and the bombs,
And, let’s do it without any qualms.

Let’s wound & kill & bomb and maim,
And do it without anyone ever having to take the blame.
But, now, I say stop, before another attack is mounted,
Because it is time to stand up and be counted.

I know they outnumber us a million to one,
But, now is the time to move away from the gun.
War must always and forevermore stop, it must cease,
Otherwise we will never know peace.
I’m awake now but again I have shouted and shouted,
Because, now, it is time, for YOU to stand up and be counted!

You made a mess, Gov. DeSantis. Clean it up. Now. | Editorial

https://www.tampabay.com/opinion/2020/04/03/you-made-a-mess-gov-desantis-clean-it-up-now-editorial/

This guy is & has been, waiting for “orders” from the White House; from his “boss” Donald J. Trump. This is in no way relevant to his job as governor of the State of Florida but then, that’s the kind of guy he is. He is meeting with lobbyists and business leaders, instead of calling out orders to self-isolate and social distance, so we can get rid of this COVID-19 problem asap but DeSantis is too busy “waiting” for his “orders” from Trump. When you have a governor who can’t decide what to do, is terrified of the POTUS, and gives no clear orders, you have local officials, like Hillsborough Sheriff Chad Chronister deciding to enforce the county’s ban on more than 10 people gathering in close proximity by arresting the pastor of a local church last Sunday, 3/29, even though DeSantis had said he wanted churches to remain open, along with businesses by practicing social distancing but only Wednesday, April 1, did DeSantis sign and issue an order that made his executive orders: “supercede any conflicting official action or order issued by local officials in response to COVID-19,” thereby relegating local county officials to pander to him, even as the next day, this past Thursday, he said that the local officials could do more in “certain situations,” further distorting the already convoluted meaning of his “executive orders.”

First Rick Scott and now this guy? God help us, we are plagued with governors who have even no common sense, much less any character or backbone, to do anything but pander to those lobbyists and businessmen who supplied, (donated) them with the money they feel they needed in order to be elected to office. The only problem for them is actually doing anything for the voters and their constituents, who they feel, they do not need, relying on the mass of Republican voters who put Donald Trump, and with him themselves, they feel, into office.
Compare DeSantis with Governor Andrew Cuomo. It’s like comparing FDR to Donald Trump. God help us.

I AM AN AMERICAN

Okay, April is National Poetry Month so, I’ll post a poem every day this month.

I AM AN AMERICAN

I am a Christian and I am a Jew,
I am a Baptist, a Muslim and even a Hindu.
I’m from Atlanta, San Diego, New York and Maine,
Along with any other State in America that you can name

I’m White, Black, Yellow, Red and sometimes even Tan,
I’m a toddler, a child, a woman and also a man.
I have relatives all over Europe, Africa, China and Japan,
As well as in Russia, Vietnam, Australia and Pakistan

When they raise the flag, fly the red, white and blue,
I stand up proudly—just exactly like you.

On 9-11, in 2001, a disaster befell us all,
And when the President made his patriotic call
I answered him just like any other man,
Because I realized that only united can we stand.

Realizing that not everyone in this world is like you and me,
Because even with government we sometimes may not agree
We still have the constitutional right
To take to the streets and protest with numbers, power and might.

I am gay or straight and even though you may not agree ,
You must agree that I have the right to be.
In America we have the right to protest and raise our voices
We don’t accept the status quo when there are better choices

We are tired of Wall Street and being ruled by the Banks
We are ready for change and human rights for the workers, thanks
Now I see you know me, you know who I am,
Yes, that’s right, I am you and you are me, I am an American.

 

THE LAYING OFF OF HANDS

LAYING OFF OF HANDS

What is happening to the world at this time? This pandemic, aka COVID-19 or the corona virus is killing people but it’s not even about that so much as it is about how they are dying: by having someone coughing in their face or shaking their hand or just leaving their germs somewhere that they may touch or even just breathe in at the right (wrong) moment.
But, worse than that is the fact that we not only don’t have any vaccine yet, everybody, it seems, is a potential carrier, who may or may not even have any symptoms. Talk about becoming a hermit: it appears almost as if your very life may, now, well depend on becoming one. And, it appears, that everybody is beginning to stay at home, wherever that home may be, and the vast majority of the population is becoming used to doing “everything” they can do online.

And so, what is a Christian man or woman supposed to think about this? Is it God that is doing this? To teach us what? That we mustn’t put any trust in the green paper money with dead presidents’ pictures on the fronts that we use to buy and sell everything we have, or is it that we are being tested to see if we are hypocrites or Christians who really do believe in God?
When’s the last time you shook someone’s hand or picked up a small child and kissed him or her? When’s the last time you saw someone shake anybody’s hand or hug someone or put his arm around someone? How about food, do you have enough? When’s the last time you bought as much food as your shopping cart could hold? And tissues and toilet paper and …?

What denomination are you? The pope now holds church services online. How about your church? Does your preacher still shake your hand(s) when you enter into the church, chapel, synagogue, mosque or whatever building you and your fellow worshipers enter to attend church services?
When is the last time you saw or heard of a preacher laying his hands on a parishioner, to heal them? This is a practice that Jesus himself began and passed on to all his apostles who then passed them on to many of their disciples. The two baptist churches in Spring Hill I have regularly attended for 15 years are now closed and holding services online. Are we coming to a religious crisis with this corona virus? Are preachers hypocrites or are we all hypocrites? Am I expecting too much “magic” from some of the “preachers” who,once upon a time, not long ago, were more than happy to line up 30 or 40 parishioners and walk by them slapping their foreheads as they fell down and then stood up mysteriously “cured?”

Am I asking for too much when I ask for the truth to be spoken by all human beings so that we can all get to the promised land, where it is the norm? Is it too much too ask for human beings to treat each other fairly and equally, no matter what their positions, religions, skin color or financial abilities? Why is it so hard for human beings to believe in the holy spirit? And if we believe in the holy spirit why is it so hard for us to believe in miracles, just because they have not been “proven” to “enough” people? Do we use our heads, filled with knowledge, when making “important” decisions and forget about our hearts and our spirits. Do we choose love over hate? Do we choose love over money? Do we choose love over all our decisions or do we continue to use our knowledge to lie, cheat and steal as much as we can get away with?
And if we do not believe in God how do we then explain the presence of the devil and if we do not believe in either God or the devil, then how do we explain the terrible wars fought for thousands of years or the enormous amount of good will that so many human beings have shown throughout the human history of this world. And, most of all, where is one person, just one human being, who can explain the birth, life and death of the Lord & Savior Jesus Christ, also known by too many other names to mention, discuss or argue about?

THE TRUTH

Okay, we are now in the midst of a crisis and so I have adapted myself as such to do something long called for but seldom accomplished: the telling of the truth, which is recognized and spoken by God and all children but few adults in today’s world, least of all any politicians. God, our creator was long ago the creator of speaking the truth, even as Jesus did to Pontius Pilate and, of course, the majority, including myself, of Christian communities know him as Jesus Christ and we also all know how He ended up.

We’ve all also known for 60+ years that the two biggest, well-worn, existential threats to our very existence, are nuclear Armageddon and climate change. A new, obviously, at this time in history, existential threat has now been added to that list, COVID-19 aka the Coronavirus pandemic.
These three threats need to be addressed immediately and, obviously, need to be reversed in order, attacking the symptoms, causes and curing of the Corona Virus pandemic asap, if not sooner, as we sometimes say, and in this case, we for sure say.

I suggest, being as we are all “quarantined” anyway, that we should all sit down and write, that’s right, write. Easy for me to say, as I am a writer anyway, right? But, I say it is just as easy for anyone to say much less do because what other choices do we have? Watch television? Play with our children or go out of our home or office? But, isn’t that just what we’re trying to avoid? By sitting at our computer(s) and creating a story? So, here we go, I use the plural tense, as using my imagination and knowing that you (readers) are all already in front of your computers you can easily open up a blank page after reading this and begin your own story, with but a little guidance here.

If you try to write truth you must first understand that truth is tough; it will not break. The greatest friend of truth is time the greatest enemy of truth is prejudice and the constant companion of truth is humility and when you see the truth, proclaim it without asking who is for it or who is against it, because, many times, the truth wishes only to appear. What governs men is the fear of truth but, I say to you, that, in the end, the truth will prevail even when no one cares if it prevails or not because, like I said, the greatest friend of Father Truth is Mother Time.
And, your question is now, what? How do you write the truth? Why, as easily as you say it: I am 74 years old (if I was female, of course, I’d be 29?). I have been happily married for 46 years and have 4 children and 8 grandchildren. See, how easy it is to write the truth. Hard, cold facts. Think it’s too easy?

Okay, then, take this truth: I have a younger sister and older brother who, in 2008, 2 years after my mother died, my sister, 7 years my junior and my brother 1 year my senior, colluded together, I learned later, to steal as much as they could from my share of my mother’s will, which included all her and my dad’s assets, which was mostly CD’s & securities in the bank. My sister got an accountant and a lawyer and the power of attorney from my mother, just before she died, and then, after a year and a half of waiting and excuses, she sends me a check for $102 K, a nice check huh? But this was money she had gotten tax-free, G.W. Bush passed an estate tax to be $0 and I personally had copies of both my mother and father’s wills. They both said split it 3 ways. My sister, acting as a power of attorney, my brother having told me, even as he had been named the executor of my father’s will, that he let my sister be the P.O.A and she had taken care of the taxes (he lied) and now, in 2017, on a visit to my sister in Tallahassee, my brother had had a few beers and we were all eating lunch in a restaurant and my mother’s will came up when I asked my brother how much money my mother had had in the bank and he answered: “Oh man, a lot, way over $500K. Needless to say I was flabbergasted and an argument, a big argument began that has yet to be settled, almost 2 years ago now. So, as you can see, truth is not always easy to state as factual. Well, let’s just say that when you state a truth you must be ready, if the liar is present, for the one who is lying to deny the truth and cling to their lie, sometimes even forever or until their dying day. Temptations will ever come. So, now it is your turn to write some truths.

WE ARE ALL IMMIGRANTS!

The problems here are simple & obvious: #1 you can’t have your cake and eat it too. The Republican majority party wants to go against the E-Verify for reasons they really cannot identify because they don’t want to be specific on making a law that would mean the three biggest employers in the State of Florida: agriculture, tourism & construction, would have to “lose” money by having to check the immigration status of the workers they hire. Now, “everyone” knows these “undocumented” immigrants provide the majority of workers for those aforementioned three biggest employers: agriculture, tourism and construction. In agriculture farmers grow but very seldom do much, if any, of the picking, sorting, labor-intensive work needed to take their products to market and depend on illegal and/or undocumented workers to do this work for them and for slave-labor wages. As for the tourist industry: if the kitchen staff, wait staff, cleaning staff and other unskilled labor in the State of Florida were to suddenly disappear the workers subsequently hired would substantially lower the wages of all the managers and assistant managers because the wages of the people who really do the heavy lifting would go up, even as in the construction industry, those identified by their jobs as laborers, carpenters, roofers, electricians, plumbers and helpers would not be immigrants but trained workers, in union-represented jobs and these workers would be paid much more than undocumented workers, most of whom are paid cash by the greedy contractors whose accountants always keep “two sets of books.” Many of these workers are also not trained properly enough and seriously endanger the lives of their fellow workers by “learning” many skills on the job instead of in an apprenticeship program.

The simple and easy answer here is to document these workers with “open arms,” much as those in the late 19th century were welcomed, as they fled their home country’s wars, violence and impoverished conditions. It would be but a simple task but if only we had a human being POTUS who actually led this country with even a modicum of a heart but, alas, such is not to be, in this White House, at this time.

And so we have a time that will worsen, as Trump will start cracking down, as he already has showed signs of doing, by taking away any and all government programs that help any poor people, including their children and rewarding the super-wealthy by having them pay little, or even, no taxes, exactly as he does, providing an example that if every single citizen duplicated we would have no government, as Capitalism depends solely upon money and Donald Trump means to have it all, or as much as he can personally get, and any way he can get it appears to make no difference to him.

We live in a time when the POTUS is spending enormous amounts of the people’s money, of course it is the government’s money, but, as Trump pays no taxes, he cares not as he does the devil’s work and builds his wall. Everyone with a brain realizes the drug cartels go underneath these walls and have been doing so ever since they began building them and the cartels built tunnels to countermand them many decades ago.

But, unfortunately, like I said, Trump thinks only of himself and what he, personally, will gain. Okay, this is how he thinks: he realizes that he needs to look good, so, he will ban Sanctuary cities because, after all, who occupies “Sanctuary Cities?” Not any registered voters, that’s for sure. And so, very soon, Trump will begin closing them down, hurting, of course, the little children the most but making the devil, Trump, look fine, which is all he’s interested in. The problem with this is, of course, we have ¼ million immigrants that pay no taxes and are paid in cash by people who wish to, like Trump, avoid paying taxes. The “illegal” immigrants, including their “innocent” children, actually pay more taxes then Trump himself, every time they buy food, eat in a restaurant, buy clothes, etc. And, being poor, working people, but working for cash, they cannot get any tax refunds.

Now, of course, the businesses that depend on these workers to stay in business, like many of the businesses owned by so many legislators, who realize that 253,500 jobs, $10.7 billion in earnings and $1.25 billion in state & local revenue could be lost. We know what Trump will do, close down sanctuary cities but what about the State Legislature? Especially those with skin in the game?