I loathe histamine. Truly. I've been trying to decide if there is some virus running through my body, but it is seeming more and more likely that it's just the wonder that is me. I have allergies. Bad allergies. Really bad allergies. Like so bad that I should live in a bubble this time of year.
I wake myself up sneezing and then I sneeze all day long. My ears are so clogged that it seems like I'm listening to everything underwater. My eyes are itchy all the time. I have an amazing nose whistle.
I love spring. Spring does not love me. Wind, especially as bad as it has been lately, makes everything worse.
Let me sing you the song of my people.
Achoo, achoo, achoo, cough, cough...cough, cough.
The Tragic Mudslide in Washington
The latest deathtoll number coming out of Snohomish County is 27, expected to still continue to rise. The number of missing people is down to 22, though the weather is making the effort to recover any additional bodies difficult if not impossible.
Images coming out of the area are humbling and heartbreaking. The stories of entire families, gone. Babies, lost. All those still unaccounted for. The dogs even need a break.
Was this an Act of God, as many claim? There are certainly elements of unpredictability, times when we are powerless to the will and strength of nature, but to pretend that the impacts of humans on the Earth did not contribute to this event would be disingenuous. Continuing to labor under some delusion that we can alter the landscape then be insulated from harm is dangerous and wrong.
Regardless of how or why this all happened, it is still tragic. It is still heartbreaking.
It can also be a lesson, if we're willing to learn it.
Wealth, Privilege and a Society Completely Distorted
I wrote a piece yesterday for Lefty Pop on the disturbing case of a man who raped his own children, admitted as such, was convicted and sentenced to prison...but given only probation because the judge decided that he wouldn't "fare well" in jail due to his wealth.
As if that is the reason child rapists have a hard time in prison....
Anyhow, the story made me sick because it is yet another perversion of the justice system at the altar of the almighty dollar.
On the polar opposite end of the spectrum, we have the case of Shanesha Taylor, a homeless women trying her best to get her feet on the ground. A woman blamed for being poor. She left her two children in the car when she went in to a job interview because she had no one to watch them. Instead of sympathizing with her situation, instead of finding resources that might have enabled free child care for women in her position, instead of encouraging her to regain stability for her family, she was arrested and charged with felony child abuse. Her kids were taken from her. She is currently free on bail awaiting trial.
The case is such an obvious one of a desperate woman trying to do the right thing for her family, left with no help and no resources. Instead of seeing that, instead of understanding that the system fails people like her all the time and then blames them for those failures, she has been vilified.
Should she have left the kids in the car? Of course not.
Should she have had some other alternative? Of course.
We are supposed to believe that rich people are more vulnerable and less culpable, and simultaneously believe that poor people are criminals to blame for their situation.
No, no, no.
Hobby Lobby Should Lose This Case Because They Are Full of Shit
I know, I know, I know....being full of shit isn't exactly a compelling legal argument. I'll get to the whole compelling legal argument part in a second. But it's true. They are indeed full of shit.
The reason they should lose the case sitting in the hands of the Supreme Court is a simple one, really.
Ready for this???
They are total and complete hypocrites.
The company sponsored 401k invests in companies that manufacture contraceptives, including IUDs and emergency contraceptive pills, the very types of contraceptives they would like to refuse to cover.
So, let's get this straight....they are perfectly content to invest in these companies and make money from the manufacture and sale of contraceptive devices, but they are unwilling to allow their employees the opportunity to make their own decisions about health care.
They don't have any ethical or moral or religious issues with these so-called abortive techniques when they are reaping the financial benefit.
They are using this whole scenario as a bullshit argument about religious freedom, and the veil has been lifted. This isn't about religious freedom. This is about oppressing employees.