Being Reminded

It was too windy for me to go for a walk today, so I worked around the house — dusting, dry mopping, wet mopping, and various other chores. What struck me as I was pampering my house is how many people contributed in one way or another to my being here, through small inheritances and other legacies, furniture donations, help in fixing up the place, in oh, so many ways. I don’t like thinking that people had to die for me to be here, but the love they left behind is something I do like to think of. At times, it feels as if the house wraps me in comfort and safety, which I particularly needed to be reminded of today.

Elections don’t normally affect me one way or another, but this one has me scared for what it portends for our country. I’m particularly aware of the revolution going on that will upend the core beliefs of many of us and make the world a lot less safe. With potential new taxes, with new mores, with the lack of any desire on the part of some leaders to stop the looting in various cities (in fact, some nominees actually approve of looting and want to keep it going), there will be no way to keep what we have from the grasp of the various powers if they want to take it. (Not that this is anything new. It’s just that I never had anything before to be taken so it never seemed personal.)

Although I knew this revolution was going on, and has been going on for many decades in one form or another, I never thought to see it gaining ground so rapidly. I figured I’d be gone by the time this country became unrecognizable. Luckily, I live in the back of beyond where people still believe in accountability, responsibility, family, equality, freedom, law and order, less rather than more government, and all the other strengths of a stable society, so maybe I won’t feel the effects as much as I fear.

But whether those big changes come soon or are still several years away, for today, I am surrounded by all the love invested in this house. And that’s a great place to be. And a wonderful thing to be reminded of.

And speaking of being reminded, let’s not forget that in nine days, my latest novel,  Bob, The Right Hand of God will be published! If you would like to be notified by email when the book is available, click here: Bob, The Right Hand of God, sign up for email notifications, and Amazon will let you know the minute it is for sale.

Protesting the Protesting

Really, people? Protesting? Rioting? Looting? What the heck are you doing? How do think this is going to change anything? It’s not as if the instigating event was a case of social or systematic injustice — it was a single case of a one man committing a crime that everyone seems to agree was egregious. He has been arrested and charged. So what’s the point of protest? It’s done.

If the protests were focused on the use of a particular means of subduing a person, then that makes sense. Kneeling on someone’s neck should never have been acceptable police procedure.

But that isn’t what people are protesting.

I can see that people want to express their overwhelming feelings toward the event, so why not a candlelight memorial for the victim to show they care? Why not some sort of benefit to offer support? But a protest? Someone needs to rewrite the narrative. Cops kill as many unarmed whites as black. (According to FBI statistics, of all the unarmed folks cops have killed, only 6% involved a white cop/unarmed black.) So what’s to protest? All deaths by cop? That makes sense since there really shouldn’t be any at all.

But that isn’t what people are protesting. If it were, race wouldn’t be an issue in this current conflagration.

Still, a quiet protest, no matter how illogical is one thing. Rioting is another.

People are still not allowed in church in groups of more than fifty in order to stop the spread of a disease, but apparently, if huge numbers are going on a spree of violence, the disease can’t catch up with them, so mobs are okay. (Does anyone else see the irony of rioters and looters wearing surgical masks to keep from accidentally spreading a disease when they are purposely doing harm to others? It sure boggles my mind.)

It seems that people are taking for granted that peaceful protests can spontaneously combust into violence. Fisticuffs, sure, but more than that is simply not possible. If one is planning on going to a peaceful gathering, one does not fill a backpack with spray paint cans, weapons, bricks, large rocks, incendiary devices. (The chance of a simple match or lighter burning down a building without any sort of flammable materials being involved is just about nil.) So if people are carrying such things, then the protest almost by definition, can’t be peaceful. And if people aren’t carrying such things, they had to come from somewhere. Which means that someone purposely instigated the riots. They didn’t just “happen.”

And looting? Oh, yeah, nothing says “solidarity” like destroying the businesses in one’s neighborhood, and nothing shows one’s sterling character like theft. To say nothing of the irony of stealing liquor and televisions and Huggies to protest crime.

Silly me. I really thought we were better than this.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.