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Gender: Do not display
Current location: Virginia
Member since: Wed Jun 1, 2011, 07:34 PM
Number of posts: 6,489

About Me

Navy brat-->University fac brat. All over-->Wisconsin-->TN-->VA. RN (ret), married, grandmother of 11. Progressive since birth. My mouth may be foul but my heart is wide open.

Journal Archives

I'm a biracial mother. Here's why Prince Charles' latest scandal feels personal.

Imagine that upon your engagement, instead of congratulations, you hear that your future father-in-law has begun musing about your future son or daughter’s complexion. Now imagine how that would feel if you were biracial and the first Black-identified person to marry into the modern British royal family, and none other than the next king of England was allegedly speculating about the race of your hypothetical children.

According to the new book “Brothers and Wives: Inside the Private Lives of William, Kate, Harry, and Meghan,” written by Christopher Andersen, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, didn't have to imagine how that might feel — she lived it. Among other tidbits, royals expert Andersen claims Prince Charles discussed the potential melanin levels of his future grandchildren over breakfast with his wife, Camilla.

Charles’ spokesperson told reporters that the claim “is fiction and not worth further comment.” But we do know that this type of identity questioning is far too common for the multiracial demographic and that it often impairs one’s social belonging, which is key to feeling positively about yourself. In fact, recent research has shown that in a sample of 293 multiracial people, over 94 percent reported having experienced questions like “What are you?” as they relate to their physical appearance or skin color. And although not all multiracial people mind questions like those if they are asked out of genuine curiosity, these types of encounters can be dehumanizing and “othering.”

Charles’ reported comments also shine a spotlight on racial microaggressions — a subtle statement or behavior, whether intentional or not, that communicates something negative and yet still ambiguous about a person of color. While they are often small and even seemingly insignificant, microaggressions cause significant psychological harm, research shows. And if you have ever heard a question like “Is your hair real?” or “Do you speak English?” or “Where are you from?” you also have most likely faced a racial microaggression.

In my older age, I've come to the conclusion that race is an artificial construct. I have 11 grandchildren and one great-grandchild. All but one are multiracial of some variety. What are they? Beautiful young people.

Liberty University professor charged in alleged abduction, sexual battery of student

A professor at Liberty University is accused in the abduction and sexual battery of a student, according to the evangelical school and Lynchburg, Virginia, court records.

William Atwell was arrested late last month on charges of sexual battery and abduction by force, court records show.

He has since made bail and is due back in court on Jan. 25.

Court records say the alleged sexual battery happened in September, while the alleged abduction by force happened on Nov. 19, the day before campus police arrested him.

Atwell’s profile had been pulled from Liberty’s website by Thursday, but a remaining page on the site indicates that he is a professor of American Sign Language in the university’s modern languages department.

Atwell did not respond to a request for comment Thursday. A statement from a university spokesperson said Atwell had been suspended.


Revealed: how Sidney Powell could be disbarred for lying in court for Trump

Sidney Powell, the former lawyer for Donald Trump who filed lawsuits across the US for the former president, hoping to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election, has on several occasions represented to federal courts that people were co-counsel or plaintiffs in her cases without seeking their permission to do so, the Guardian has learned.

Some of these individuals say that they found out that Powell had named them only once the cases were already filed.

During this same period of time, Powell also named several other lawyers – with their permission in those instances – as co-counsel in her election-related cases, despite the fact that they played virtually no role in bringing or litigating those cases.

Both Powell’s naming of other people as plaintiffs or co-counsel without their consent and representing that other attorneys were central to her cases when, in fact, their roles were nominal or nonexistent, constitute serious potential violations of the American Bar Association model rules for professional conduct, top legal ethicists told the Guardian.

Powell’s misrepresentations to the courts in those particular instances often aided fundraising for her non-profit, Defending the Republic. Powell had told prospective donors that the attorneys were integral members of an “elite strike force” who had played outsized roles in her cases – when in fact they were barely involved if at all.


Chilling Videos, Journal Found as Parents Face Scrutiny in Michigan School Shooting

Detailed descriptions of a wish to massacre classmates on his cellphone and in a journal. At least one social media post pointing to elation at access to a handgun bought by his dad. A mom who thanked Trump for “my right to bear arms.” And a meeting between his parents and school administrators about his conduct just hours before the attack.

Authorities on Wednesday identified the teenage suspect in the mass shooting a day earlier at Michigan’s Oxford High School as 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley, painting a picture of a clear-eyed teen who planned and executed a rampage that left at least four students dead and seven others, a teacher among them, injured.

Crumbley, a sophomore, was previously flagged by administrators for “behavior in the classroom that they felt was concerning,” Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard said Wednesday. He was called in to talk with school officials on Monday and Tuesday. Then, his parents were brought into the school the morning of the shooting for a face-to-face meeting about their son’s behavior, according to Bouchard. He wouldn’t say what the behavior was, and police weren’t informed about any potential issues prior to the tragic event.

Nathan Swanson, a 10th grader who was in some middle-school classes with Crumbley, told The Daily Beast that he was “really quiet, he would never talk to people.”

“He wore all black, I believe he was really into hunting,” Swanson said.

The kid sounds like a sociopath. So does his mommy.

Did Trump's Border Patrol Chief Make a Rape Threat? A Judge Says Yes.

The chief of the U.S. Border Patrol during the Trump administration testified that he didn’t believe he was making a threat “in any way, shape, or form” when he told a well-known rape survivor that she should “lean back, close your eyes, and just enjoy the show.”

Rodney Scott was hauled into court in November after former Border Patrol agent Jenn Budd, an outspoken critic of sexual assault within the agency, sought a restraining order against him over his September Twitter post. In court, Scott declared that he was referring to Budd’s “active imagination” when he wrote those 10 words.

That assertion met with disbelief from San Diego Superior Court Judge Robert Longstreth, who described Scott’s comment as a “classic” rape threat.

“Maybe you were the one person in the world that’s never heard of ‘lie back and take it’ as referring to rape,” Longstreth said, according to the court transcript reviewed by VICE World News, adding that Scott’s remarks were particularly troubling given the Border Patrol’s reputation for sexism and misogyny.


Michigan Shooting Suspect's Parents Could Be Charged for Not Locking Up Gun

The father of the 15-year-old charged in Tuesday’s horrific school shooting in Michigan bought the gun suspected in the killings just four days prior. Now, he and the child’s mother might be charged as well, the county’s top prosecutor said Wednesday.

Ethan Crumbley, a sophomore at Oxford High School in a suburb north of Detroit, was charged Wednesday as an adult with murder, attempted murder, and terrorism causing death. The suspect allegedly opened fire at the school shortly before 1 p.m. Tuesday, killing at least four of his classmates and injuring a half-dozen more, as well as a teacher.

The alleged shooter and his parents, James and Jennifer Crumbley, were called in to Oxford High School earlier in the day to discuss behavior the school found troubling, Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard said Wednesday. “The content of that meeting, obviously, is part of the investigation,” Bouchard told reporters. “We did not learn of that meeting nor of the content of that meeting until after the shooting and during this investigation.”

James Crumbley bought the 9 mm Sig Sauer semiautomatic handgun police believe was used in the shooting on Black Friday, just four days before the tragedy. When police arrested the alleged shooter they found three 15-round magazine clips.

“It's my understanding, again, that this was a recent weapon purchase, that he had been shooting with it. And [the family] posted pictures of (a) target and the weapon,” Bouchard told reporters Tuesday night.

I said so. And also charged with involuntary manslaughter. Lock the MAGAts up!

Humanity's unlikely gateway to space

The world's first and most secretive space base, Baikonur Cosmodrome, sits in the middle of a vast Central Asian desert, 2,600km south-east of Moscow and 1,300km from Kazakhstan's two main cities, Nur-Sultan and Almaty. It was from this remote part of the western steppe in 1957 that the Soviet Union successfully launched the first artificial satellite – Sputnik 1 – into orbit around Earth. Four years later, in 1961, Yuri Gagarin launched from here to become the first human to fly into space aboard the Vostok 1. And in 1963, Valentina Tereshkova launched from Baikonur as the first woman in space.

After the retirement of Nasa's Space Shuttle programme in 2011, Baikonur became the planet's only working launch site to the International Space Station (ISS). Now, 60 years after Gagarin's historic first flight, it remains the world's main spaceport.

But how and why did a dusty outpost in the wilds of western Kazakhstan become humanity's unlikely gateway to outer space?

To get to space, you need two things: to be far away from populated areas; and to be as close to the equator as possible to take advantage of the Earth's rotational speed, which is fastest at that contour of the planet. In the case of the US space programme, this meant the east coast of Florida, where the Kennedy Space Center was built. The Soviet Union, meanwhile, went to the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic in search of a remote locale within its borders that could accommodate long-range missile testing and rocket launches.

Places I would like to visit and will never get to......

Straight-Up Medicare vs. Advantage

It's that damn time of year again. I swore I would never go for Medicare Advantage because I hate, hate, HATE Big Insurance with a passion, but here I am looking at it. I know they charge the government more, and I can't honestly figure out if it's any better than just going plain, unadorned Medicare, which I've done ever since I've had Medicare, and just getting Part D. The math doesn't make any sense. Can anybody tell me any reason why I should get a Medicare Advantage policy? The website won't tell me anything about my dentist OR my eye dr. so that's no help either.

Mass. Gov. Charlie Baker, a Republican who tangled with Trump, won't seek re-election

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, a Republican who had resisted his party's pull toward Donald Trump, announced Wednesday that he won't see re-election to a third term.

The decision was first reported by The Boston Globe.

In a statement, Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito cited the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic as a factor in not running again in 2022.

"We have a great deal of work to do to put the pandemic behind us, keep our kids in school, and keep our communities and economy moving forward," Baker and Polito wrote. "That work cannot and should not be about politics and the next election. If we were to run, it would be a distraction that would potentially get in the way of many of the things we should be working on for everyone in Massachusetts. We want to focus on recovery, not on the grudge matches political campaigns can devolve into."

Baker was among a crop of moderate Republican governors from Northeastern states — including Larry Hogan in Maryland, Phil Scott in Vermont and Chris Sununu in New Hampshire — who emerged as critics of Trump's presidency.Baker, for example, said he “blanked” his 2020 ballot rather than vote for the then-president’s bid for a second term. Trump has endorsed Geoff Diehl, a co-chair of his Massachusetts campaign in 2016 and the losing Senate candidate against Democratic incumbent Elizabeth Warren in 2018, in the 2022 GOP primary for governor.


"They Took Us Away From Each Other": Lost Inside America's Shadow Foster System

When a staph infection killed Molly Cordell’s mother just before Halloween in 2015, Molly felt, almost immediately, as if she were being shoved out of her own life. At 15, she and her sister, Heaven, who was a year younger, had no idea where they would go. Their dad had been in and out of their lives for most of their childhood. His grief, as their mother lay dying, sent him spinning. It seemed to the girls that he was on too much meth, and whenever he used, he got mean and crazy. Once, he made Heaven watch him set their mom’s Chevy truck on fire. Their older brother, Isaiah, left their home in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains when their mom was still alive, and the teenage girls depended on each other. Molly was deaf in her left ear, and her sister always asked others to speak loudly for her. They shared the same group of friends, the same tanks and capri pants. Although Molly had her own bedroom, she slept on the couch in Heaven’s.

The girls moved in with their grandmother, up the road from their wood-paneled house in Cherokee County, North Carolina, a poor, sprawling region at the southwesternmost edge of the state. Their dad lived in a camper in the yard. Their grandmother, too, was trapped in an angry stage of mourning, looking for someone to blame for her daughter’s death. She kept telling Molly and Heaven that it was their fault — if only they’d taken better care of their mom, she might be alive. Molly was starting to believe it.

In January 2016, Heaven found Molly on the bathroom floor after downing 27 tabs of Zoloft in an attempt to take her life. The hospital where Molly was admitted alerted the child-protective unit of the county’s Department of Social Services, and days later, two caseworkers showed up at their grandmother’s house to investigate neglect. The girls knew they needed help. Recently, their dad, who had never been physical with them, pushed Molly facedown on a dirt path. The sisters told the caseworkers that they couldn’t handle their grandmother’s rage any longer. Molly said that if they left her, she would try to kill herself again. “We thought that maybe they’d place us together or put us in a foster home,” Molly told me. “And the only thing they did was they took us away from each other.”

Their mom had always said that if anything were to happen, the girls would live with their great-aunt Sonja, who had worked at a domestic-violence shelter, but no one from the department called her. Nor did the caseworkers file a petition in court to take the girls into foster care. Instead, they dropped Heaven off with her friend’s parents, Angie and Scott Haney. Molly kept asking, “Can I stay here?” But because Molly had admitted to having suicidal thoughts, caseworkers obtained an involuntary-commitment order to place her in a local hospital, where doctors noted her history of depression and anxiety and transferred her to an inpatient psychiatric facility. Ten days later, as Molly remembers it, a short woman with a loud voice and big teeth showed up. Her name was Tamyra White. Molly knew her daughter through friends, but she barely knew the mother. White said she had spoken with the department, and Molly was coming to live with her.

Long, but worth the read. A country is judged by the way it cares for its young and its elderly. We fail.
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