Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Put your broken heart aside and #RESIST

Have you ever heard of the term "MORAL INJURY"?  This happens when what you believed about the world turns out not to be true. I learned this term recently at the Women Against Gun Violence Firearms Suicide Summit. A military psychiatrist explained it to us, and told us it’s the number one reason Veterans commit suicide.

Moral injury is what many of us are experiencing right now. We lived through, or saw what our parents and grandparents lived through with World War II and Vietnam and the long hard struggle for civil rights. We were grateful those times were behind us, that we could learn from them and never repeat those mistakes again. We lived through 9/11 and Matthew Sheppard and the fight for marriage equality. We worked hard to elect the first African-American President, and were about ready to see another step toward equality in America with the first woman President. We thought there was no stopping the beautiful progress America had made. We were becoming a kinder and more inclusive society. We were evolving!

We slapped our “LOVE TRUMPS HATE” bumper stickers on our cars and planned our victory parties with friends because there was NO WAY a married man who had bragged about grabbing women by the pussy could EVER be elected President. I mean, look what happened to Bill Clinton, right? We laughed at Trump's campaign as we watched it unravel after he insulted Hispanics, blacks, Muslims, veterans. We never, ever believed that anyone, no matter what side of the aisle they were on, could elect such a hateful person – especially a hateful person with absolutely no experience in government, nor any understanding of how our government works. Americans are a good people. The majority will vote the right way. After all, we’ve evolved!

But Republicans voted party over morals. Trump received less votes than Romney, but still got the lion’s share of Republican votes. He won because Democrats – a LOT of them, just didn’t bother to show up. They were sulking. They didn’t like the choices so they decided to sit this one out. I warned, over and over again on social media, that bad politicians are elected by good people who don’t vote. And it happened. President Obama reflected what we aspired to be, but Trump reflects back to us what we’ve become.

So now we are faced with the consequences. We are shocked and in mourning. We didn’t unite against hate and misogyny, and now it is being visited upon us. The President of the most powerful nation in the world is a self-deluded narcissist who knows less than nothing about foreign policy and how the government works. A white supremacist has been chosen as the President’s top advisor. A climate change denier has been chosen to head up the Environmental Protection Agency. Ben Carson, who claimed that homosexuality is a choice and evolution is an idea encouraged by the devil, is in charge of HUD. The GOP has the steering wheel for all three branches of government, and the NRA was just thrown the keys to the car. You think you’re hurting? Our children are the ones who will suffer most for our mistakes.

Yes, we are suffering our moral injury, but there’s no time for hand-wringing. Rome is burning and we’ve got shit to do. We’ve got two years until midterm elections- you know, those elections that Democrats never show up for? These are the elections when Congress is elected. You better work like you never have to make sure every person you know gets to the polls. You better work harder than you knew you could to learn the issues and the candidates, and educate those around you. What ever you do, do NOT become lulled into a sense of complacency and delude yourself that everything will turn out okay if we just “give him a chance” and “think positive.” Never before in our nation’s history has a man with NO experience in governing been given the helm of the most powerful country in the world. STAY WOKE, people. Stay woke and get to work.

START LOCAL: Contact the Democratic party in your state, find out what local and statewide elections are coming up and when. Call the campaigns and ask how you can help.
STAY WOKE and wake the people around you.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Don't Let Them Take Our Healthcare!

I lived six years without health insurance, due to a pre-existing condition. What was my pre-existing condition? I had seen a therapist for depression and anxiety after my house burned down. Every insurance company denied me, even after I appealed annually and wrote numerous letters to all of the major providers. When I found out I was pregnant with Evan at 41- I had NO INSURANCE. I was incredibly lucky to find a California program that covered pregnant, uninsured women. They paid for my high-risk pregnancy and emergency cesarean delivery. Many other women, in other, less progressive states, will not be so lucky. 

I turned to Planned Parenthood for my annual checkups and breast exams during those six long years that no one would insure me. I would have had NO health care at all if it were not for Planned Parenthood. I watched a documentary on how many homeless women and mothers there are in the US. Many of them have become homeless after being bankrupted by medical bills. If, during these 6 years, I had been hit by a car, or gotten cancer, I would have lost everything. My job, my house, all my savings. I could have been homeless.

Last night, while we slept, the Republican Senate voted 51 - 48 to:
1. To end coverage for pre-existing conditions, veterans benefits, and aid to rural hospitals. (50 miles to an ER rural voters)
2. To remove discrimination protection for women in healthcare.
3. Against the provision allowing children to remain on their parent's insurance till the age of 26.
4. To cut off funding for the Child Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
5. Against ACA contraceptive coverage and maternity care provision.
6. To direct committees to send budget legislation to defund and repeal the Affordable Care Act.

And by the way, they also voted to defund Planned Parenthood.
The house votes on Friday, January 13.

And for those of you who get health insurance through work, no pre-existing conditions,  and lifetime caps for coverage are back for everyone.

How can GOP representatives defend being the party of American values when they strip Americans of life-saving healthcare?  My Facebook feed today is filled with posts of friends who are cancer survivors, who have mental health struggles, who have sick children and spouses, all who will be denied healthcare for having a "pre-existing" condition. Some who will die if denied their expensive medications. CALL YOUR HOUSE REP NOW! They vote tomorrow to repeal the ACA. Tell them what this means for you!  (202)225-3121