Friday, January 28, 2011

Are you a Republican, Democrat, or ...

...do you just try to be a good person? :)

It is incredibly interesting that people have such differences in opinion! You'd think that we'd all agree more about what's right, and what's wrong. It's one of the great mysteries of life. Here's my take why there are such differences:

I do want to take issue with the ideal that is apparent with those on the Republican side of the fence: They propose that life would be better if there was less government, more "self government." If we each were perfect, I'd see this logic. I think Republicans give themselves too much credit. My belief is more and better rules are what's needed. You can't call it socialism or communism. It has to called something like, "perfection", or "panacea", or "utopia". We all know, it aint gonna happen. We are never going to have a perfect world, a perfect government, perfect rules. But what we each need to do is work toward IMPROVEMENTS.

The reason I do not believe in more self government, to give us each more self control of how we each live our lives is this: We are each far too imperfect. We each have a negative characteristic, and that is human greed. Of course some are greedier than others, but the point is- we need good rules, and in my opinion good government needs to set good rules, and more of them. That of course is where there will always be much disagreement- over what rules are good, and which are not. Some rules are made to be everlasting, and some are made to be broken. Some rules need to be dropped, and some need to be invented. Human nature is too imperfect for us to believe that we are better off taking care of ourselves. Are some or a lot of Republicans thinking they are better than others? Are they greedier than others as a whole? Can we suggest that instead of labeling people Republican or Democrat we could instead label people Greedy or Not So Greedy? It seems Dems want to contribute more to education and needy people while Repubs want less taxes, to keep more of their own money. That is greed. How are we going to make education better, or help the needy without taxes? Or health care? Repubs don't like universal health care because it means more money out of their pockets. That's greed folks. Don't we all need to see that we each need to give more to make our world a better place?

Another problem I have with Republicans is they always reference the Constitution or the Declaration of Independence. Politicians need to consider at what time in history these documents were written. It's like people who take the Bible literally- people need to take into consideration when it was written! Of course some rules in the Bible will remain timeless, but things change folks! Get a clue! Let's get out of the stone ages, wake up and realize rules and laws need to be changed for the times. For example, people that take the Bible literally believe that it is wrong to be homosexual. That is wrong ideology written how many hundreds of years ago!? Just to set the record straight, it is right as rain to be homosexual. It is not a choice. Get over it those of you are wrong about this.

Another good example are Amish rules. Don't get me wrong- I believe that in many respects the Amish live their lives to respect the earth, creating much less of a footprint than most. I respect their values in many ways, but on the other hand I think their way of life is greatly flawed because they live today according to rules that were made back in Martin Luther's time!

Over time, the human race has acquired the instincts of survival and competition. This explains it: Some people care more about the needs of others, some do not. Some are more competitive than others. At times it is depressing thinking that we as a whole in this country are never going to get together enough to create HARMONY. To combat this, just think about what we have, instead of what we don't have, and try to work for IMPROVEMENT. Try to set a good example and be a good influence to others.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

This is how I see it.

In regards to the word "natural", one of my absolutely favorite words:

For the health of the earth, and for the health of all people, we should transition to a diet that is naturally intended for humans: a plant based diet.

There should be a tax on ALL unnatural unhealthy food and drink. A doctor "in the know" will decide what is healthy and what is not. The tax money could be used to feed hungry people around the world.

No more spraying of poison on my food. It is not natural to put poison on my food. At meal time: "Please pass the poison?"
Grow food ONLY organically. Apply a "Poison Tax" on all sprayed food, or declare it illegal. Use the tax money to feed hungry people.

All packaging materials should be recyclable or biodegradable. If not, un-recyclable materials should be taxed or declared illegal. Use the tax money to feed hungry people. No more styrafoam! Even better yet, adopt the natural "zero waste" concept. ie: bring your own containers to buy food in bulk.

Conservation must be stressed all over the world- electricity, water, fuel, etc. Natural forms of energy like solar and wind are great, but then should people think they can use as much energy as they want? Leave the lights on and not care? Of course not.

No more animal exploitation for human profit. All zoos, Sea Worlds, etc. will be disbanded. These facilities will remain only as animal hospitals. No more research on ANY animals. No more caging of birds. No more caging of any animals, unless they are sick/being rehabilitated. No more eating animals. Let them live in peace in their natural surroundings. There would be much better karma in the world.

No more house plants. It is not natural for a plant to live in a house. ( I have a cactus and aloe in our bedroom window. I selfishly enjoy owning them. They belong in a desert.)

We should all stop what we are doing, and become more benevolent. There should not be one person on this earth today that will die because they have no food to eat. Myself, I could do MUCH more.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Enslaved

We visited our son who lives in Charleston, SC, a beautiful city with lots of history. Our family of four toured Magnolia Plantation. On the site were the original slave quarters. A tour guide presented an informative lecture. Here are a few points I remember: The main reason for the slave trade in this region was for growing rice. White slave traders stole Africans who knew how to grow rice. They took their freedom- they stole it.
Slave traders in this area also stole Africans who knew about animal husbandry. This is where the term "cowboy" first came from, not from Texas. An African man was disrespectfully referred to as "boy". A "cow- boy."
Mosquitos in the area carried malaria, which killed many white people on the plantation, however the enslaved were immune to the disease. For this reason most white people left the plantation during the mosquito season.

As you can see by the picture, slave quarters were about as basic as it gets. A square, small structure, with a small fireplace inside for cooking and heat. An entire family, sometimes double digits in size had to try to survive in this small space.
My son has complained many times how hot it gets in the Charleston area certain times of the year. Some days it does not cool off at night.
I cannot imagine how hard it must have been for these enslaved people. Imagine what it must've been like: treated as sub-human, stolen away from their homeland, and if they survived the journey from Africa in the crowded, awful conditions on the slave ships (a great number of Africans did not survive the journey) imagine what they had to face to just stay alive. They were treated like dirt. The "people" (monsters) who "owned" them thought they could do whatever they wanted with their "property". Women/girls were sometimes raped at will. Men/boys beaten or worse.

We watched a program on public TV about slavery. The biggest reason for slavery as a whole in the U.S. was for sugar production. Slave traders stole Africans who knew how to raise sugar cane. It is absolutely ironic that such an inexcusable, horrific practice as slavery is associated with such an unhealthy, addictive substance that continues to rob the health of people of all colors today.

On our visit to SC, I was shocked to hear that there are people who believe they are still fighting the civil war. North against South. White against Blacks. People still fly confederate flags on their porches. They sell cowboy hats with the confederate flag insignia, on bumper stickers, etc. In a family discussion, it was brought up that when elderly prejudiced people die, so do their prejudices. Well, what about their offspring who've been taught to hate?

I have one thing to say to the people who participated in the selling of people for money: What were you thinking!!! What gave you the right to think you could own another person?!

I was shocked to hear that there is still slavery going on in certain parts of Africa. Here we sit in America with all our freedoms and luxuries. We are gluttons, eating and drinking ourselves to an early death. We pay sports stars millions for playing a game. Over 63 million people in the world die every year from starvation related diseases. Anyone else see something wrong with this picture? What is the solution? What can we do?
My answer is this: try to do SOMETHING to change the status quo.
Try not to be prejudiced. Try not to make fun of ANYONE, ANY RACE, ANY SKIN PIGMENTATION. DONATE to a minority or hunger cause.
Go out of your way to be extra nice to someone who is considered a minority. Create productive dialogue with others about this cause.
Set a good example.
Please try to do SOMETHING.