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Opioids? Opiates? A Pandemic? October 16, 2017

Posted by voolavex in Social Issues, Medical issues.
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We have an “Opioid Pandemic”; so says the media – all the media of the English speaking world ( English,simply because I do not read too many languages as well as I’d like).  It is out of control!  It has created fear and loathing and lots of talk.  Oh so much talk.  Unlike the Spanish Flu – a pandemic of 1918 that took out ‘ 20 to 50 MILLION, this new epidemic is one essentially created by Big Pharma.  Sorry – but they do make the stuff and they do send “detail men” – often blondies in very chic, dark suits a size too small, to cold call doctors; they buy them lunches and give out samples.  This too may have changed since our “War on Drugs” began (and persists).  In the 60’s doctors got the samples through the mail slot. I had no idea but I did discover Darvon as a result.  The samples and the detail men are part of how Big Pharma sells medications.  Medications that are beneficial, but not limited to beneficial.  Psychotropic drugs – another form of mind alteration, sleeping medication, another potential addiction and oodles of others.

Ever wonder why those Pharma ads on TV and in magazine are so wordy.  Federal law.  And my favorite of every single one is “and may cause death”.  So I reckon we have a public relations, ad-promoted prescription epidemic that includes opioids.  I recall an old response in narcotics talk in the days of yore in the Haight- Ashbury “take two – they’re small”.

Those of us who are not medical professionals (and hint:  Web MD is not an online personal doctor) have taken the Rx with a grain of salt for eons.  Second guessing is not a valid second opinion, but when in doubt – take two – it will be twice as good.

JAMA has it’s own online page (s) on how to fight this not so new “war” and as I read a bulletin of theirs today, I was prompted to make a note of it and offer my suggestions. So this is it.

“First I would lose the words Opioid Epidemic.  It is not a call to arms – people simply don’t see it as a threat if they are not opioid users.  People in serious pain fear the words.

Rein in Big Pharma.  Rein it in.  Research by Big Pharma may lead to better treatments, but in the larger picture Big Pharma is a cash cow for politicos and insurance companies and  government and every damn body I have left out. It is a revenue stream. Funding for Big Pharma should not be tied to politics.  Sounds drastic but if it is indeed an epidemic – then drastic measures need be used.

And why must this country find a solution when other countries have already done it?  Look at what other countries are doing and learn.  Poach their solutions or ask nicely.

Redefine and revamp rehab.  Rehab is another excuse -creating revenue stream.  Thirty days is not enough rehab and neither is prison.  If it is a medical problem – deal with it medically.  With real medical experts.

Decriminalize marijuana  across the board*.   I am sure that the GOP and the conservative (paranoids) of all stripes can figure out a way to make lots of money fast from the many aspect of this plant.  It is a very viable win-win.  Reflect on the Opioid Epidemics of previous centuries and see what started them and what stopped them.  Demonizing anything we don’t like in this country is the go-to first.  We must stop this.  We must also face that as well as killing pain, opiates make us happy.  We like to demonize that too, unless it  is from a federally taxed bottle of booze.

And not last – but as an important note – these are the times that try our selves.  We seek relief from these trying times.  It has been noted by  researchers in the field of intoxication and addiction that during the heavy shelling of the Vietnam War – water buffaloes slept in poppy fields.  I am certain that the state of the world has contributed to our need for more relief, more often.  We may need to stop the rhetoric and get real.  And we must stop the terms – drug Lord and drug Czar.  Not only do they sound very stupid – they send out a confusing message.  Don’t they?

*Fact:  Marijuana use and posession and sale is a Federal Crime.  As a result military veterans cannot use it period.  No matter how much it may work for their conditions or injuries. No matter how much the federal government could save money and benefit from faster cures.  Random drug tests insult our vets and if weed shows up in the test – you lose the whole enchilada and could face arrest.  Hardly what I would characterize as a benefit.  But true.  Think about it.

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Harvey Weinstein and The Quid Pro Quo October 11, 2017

Posted by voolavex in sex, sexist, sins, Social Issues.
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Just Tell Me What You Want (1980), a provocative comedy about a ruthless business mogul and his TV-producer mistress (Ali MacGraw).

Sidney Lumet cast Alan King as the Harvey Weinstein type in this movie in 1980 with Ali McGraw. It was and should have been for Harv, a cautionary tale. Jay Allen Presson wrote the book (which I read) and as soon as Harv hit the headlines – this is what I remembered about King’s character saying, “Okay, what’s the quid pro quo?” Harv had one that he didn’t even have to mention.

I sat a Friar’s Club table at some event years ago, with Jesse White, Maytag washer man – an aging Borscht Belt comedian who sat next to another of the same ilk. Jesse (who coughed and cracked wise and told filthy jokes about tits, ass, dick, )had a “personal assistant “with him – maybe 23 or 24.  T&A, Big Hair.I wondered then what the quid pro quo was for her – Friar’s Club events with old Borscht Belt comedians. I was called “Doll” by the lot and I was very amused – not funny amused – but amused at the leers, and eye rolls coming from these nasty, old men. My date was not amused and we left. I was suppressing laughter the more I thought about them.

I realize that Harv has thrown the world of fantasy and the silver screen into a tizzy with the reveal of his sexual aggression to many women. But look at this man. Was he ever going to get the girl on his own? When you don’t have a prayer, power becomes your tool. And he’s a fool with a tool. And look at him. Think about how he acquired the beauties he used as arm candy. The self-loathing and neediness he carried inside. Look at this slob. He could well be in a grimy undershirt, his gut hanging over the top of grubby shorts wearing flip-flops with a can in his hand. Can you imagine this creature coming on to you, naked out the shower? I wonder what he saw when he looked in a mirror? I wonder if he called his prey “Doll” ? Honey? And I wonder how much power he DID have for NO ONE to say a word about it. And then someone did and powerful, rich  Harv got The Long Drop.

I do not doubt a word of accusations flying in formation.   I cannot wait for my New Yorker to hit my mailbox.  And I  do not expect to shocked or even disgusted by the story. It is not limited to Hollywood or Harv.  it is happening in a high-rise office, near you, right now and possibly (but not for sure), even The White House.

Patient Zero September 16, 2017

Posted by voolavex in Social Issues, Social Media.
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“The thing I really care about is the mission, making the world open.” Mark Zuckerberg. Wired 2010.

Thus spake Zuckerberg.  And with a certain amount of youthful naiveté, he and his colleagues unleashed upon this planet something so alluring, so fascinating, so innocent that not a soul could have imagined, as did J. Robert Oppenheimer, post A-Bomb, that they had become death.

Does that sound harsh?  I don’t believe it began harshly.  Zuckerberg is a genius and has a good heart by and large – not bad attributes to possess. And because he seems to also possesses a healthier moral compass than many of his generation, I am trying to envision how he could have envisioned Facebook as anything but an asset to the world and a force for openness and harmony for the planet Earth. And I wonder if he still believes this or has suddenly realized, as the mushroom cloud of social media blotted out the sun, that he had weaponized  the world at the same time. Facebook has placed that little angel on one shoulder and that little devil on the other.  Both are multi-lingual and each ones single job is to persuade.  I think I would be harsh to characterize “social media” as a pathogen, yet it begs for this descriptor too.  Some folks catch it and others seem immune.

On this very day,  this man and his creation are being named as the villain in the Russian US 2016 election debacle.  What if it had been MySpace or another social media site?  I suspect Zuckerberg did not stop to think about the balance of good and bad on this lonely plane; anymore than Bell did when he got a dial tone.  Or a HAM Radio Operator when he first smelled the bacon.    Yet, because, as a species, we have been created with very bellicose instincts  and lots of greed, it might have been examined.  And those clubs that cavemen wielded were not for show.  And dragging women by the hair is a gender based tradition. We wage war constantly. We do not wage peace.  Religion short-cons the species to hope for peace – but it has never actually said we would get it.  But we got war; maiming, murdering, torturing, raping and pillaging.   Nobody human ever wanted to buy the world a Coke. Still, I don’t think Zuckerberg realized that the monster he had created would metastasize like those brooms and buckets in the Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Or the Spanish Flu. Or AIDS.

So now we have a very small whirling planet, beaten and pimped by anyone who can figure a way to get more from their own “brand”. ( FYI – a brand is a hot iron poker that burns an ID on the skin of animals (and people). You can have your logo tattooed  onto your own skin. In my mind they are very similar). Does anyone truly imagine Mark foreseeing this?  Do you think he created an algorithm for this?   Of course not.  Even J. Robert could see what he had unleashed.  I truly do not believe this was on Mark’s mind.

It’s far cry from the “Harvard Face Book” to the lethal air it has become. The air that is pumped into our lives every single second. But it is an entity of many minds and voices.  A hydra. Or even simpler, swamp scum.  We  now know about too much and now we know about too little and there is no fix either way.  Don’t blame Mark Zuckerberg.  Do not shoot the messenger.  He did not invent us.  He did not program us;  we each relied on our basest and best instincts – as we saw fit – and stirred the pot.  If anything Mark is Patient Zero. His simple idea created the plague that has engulfed the planet. But remember this.  Just like Marie Curie for example, he did not create immunity for himself and I rather think he must realize it by now.  As much as I reject the idea of “changing the course of history” his  creation has raised questions for me.

Consider an old saw, but absolutely true today.  Once the genie is out of the bottle – he truly cannot be put back.

 

A Book Blog Needs Tech Help August 29, 2017

Posted by voolavex in Book Blog, books, Social Issues.
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Hello – it is about 100F in my area and humid.  I am enjoying our new small air conditioner and  our fans – they do work.  This is not about that.

I want to create a blog to reflect my love of reading.  I sort of did but then realized my blog title choices were not great and that I had jumped the gun.  I have asked WP twice for support and help to no response.  Yuk.  I suggest to WP – they include an  OOPS function in their “Create a Blog” instructions because I sure do need it.  Years ago it was far less complicated.  If anyone has some SIMPLE advice – please comment.

In any case there will be a Book Blog  from Voolavex.com shortly.  I read LOTS of books on very varied subjects.  I want to share the titles, the authors, the comments and all the fun with those who read my blog and those who love to read. Anyone who considers themselves a “reader” is included.  I play (and it is  such fun) on “Goodreads”, a great Amazon generated site, but I want to share my peculiar and very wide list of subjects in a larger, more personal way.

Stay tuned.  I am sure to sort out the tech mess shortly.  And if you are a reader of books and/or a writer of books– in any form; please accept my invitation to check out the new Book Blog from Voolavex.

Strushie the Cat – Why It Matters July 31, 2017

Posted by voolavex in despicable, freedom, Pets, Social Issues.
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On April 26, 2017 –  Strushie the cat – a fixture at the Franklin Hotel in South Beach, Miami, Florida was killed intentionally by an employee.  There is not term for this crime. I suspect the reason is because under various circumstance animals can be killed for reasons  for which we arrest humans who kill humans.   It is however a felony. I would say generally if an annoying animal makes their home on your property and you object – calling animal control would seem the best choice.   Strushie and his several alleycat mates had been living in the Florida sunshine and being fed on the premises for years.  Strushie often sat in the lobby and was welcomed by staff and tourists alike.He was well liked and gentle.

The Franklin – touted as one of Miami’s South Beach landmarks of the Art Deco period was recently sold.  The cats went along in the deal.  The people still fed them and smiled at them and liked them.  Just an added perk to this small, boutique hotel with security ; cameras and lights and location in a sweet South Beach spot. I wonder how business is under the new ownership?

I wonder more though, why Strushie was singled out; and he was.  An aggressive employee decided – perhaps on his own – or perhaps at the behest of the new owners that Strushie was annoying.  I have heard conflicting reports.  But on or about April 26, 2017 Strushie was stalked by determined  man armed with small crossbow, who cornered him and shot two arrows through his head. The injuries did not kill Strushie who ran away and was discovered, rushed to vet and died despite valiant efforts to save his life. He was shot with malice aforethought with a very lethal weapon at close-range then hidden in a room  the killer appeared to occupy in the Franklin.  Did I mention his name?  Georgios Lollias –  one of the Franklin’s valued staff.

The crime was covered up with denials from the Franklin’s owner and excuses that the cameras were down that day and no one saw anything.   Strushie, ironically,  got the Kitty Genovese treatment.  But animal lovers are a very devoted lot.  Very devoted.  And one such person started a Care2.org  petition to get justice for Strushie online And she did.  Pressure from the public, animal groups, outraged citizens and foreigners made such a hue and cry (and in these days of social media – hueing and crying has become a daily devotion) that investigators from local law enforcement and the City of Miami  began to seek the monster who committed this crime.  And the U.S.Secret Service entered the fray because it wanted to retrieve the data from the cameras not working that day.  The crime had been captured in full color and in graphic detail.  An arrest followed.  A hearing date is being set in August.  Two months from the killing Strushie the Cat Day in Miami was officially declared in Miami on July 26, 2017.

WHY DOES THIS MATTER? Because we are learning and observing the basest side of the Mr. or Mrs. Average American citizen – what they can do  and even better, it becomes  a guide to  show how them they can do it.  I suspect Strushies occur every single day in this country alone.  And with the Internet, the Fount of all Knowledge (and free to all) you have all the secrets  Including animal cruelty.  Or how to build a bomb or sarin gas and of course how to make cute stuff with bleach bottles. Google it.  Strushie was not hit by a car or disease ridden.  He was part of a community that valued him enough to let him live his life unfettered.  Why does this matter?  Because we are all entitled to live without fear of monsters and hit men and danger and the chance to enrich our own communities.  Yet if the killing of a defenseless and harmless cat is done so easily and then covered up – the next kill or injustice or atrocity just becomes easier and  more justifiable.  This is a lesson.   This is why we should not have to fight to enjoy or cringe for any reason, color, faith, age or fur.  It creates a domino effect.  We are seeing now.  

 We are all Strushies. We matter.  I think this is something we all MUST remember.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Own Personal Holocaust Denier July 9, 2017

Posted by voolavex in Anti-Semitism, Holocaust deniers, Israel, Jews, Jews, Nazis, Social Issues.
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Recently, I learned that a person, married into my family ( and we are all very estranged) is a Holocaust denier.  At the time I found out (quite by accident) I actually thought I would vomit.  I shook.  I knew this person was opinionated and narrow-minded but this is one  that never even occurred to me.  Coincidentally, I had just recently seen “Denial” (read the book quite a few years ago) and “Remember”; both of which impressed me and both of which presented aspects of this hideous event in detail. Each was excellent.  I should add I am a Jew. although quite secular and I am very pro-Israel – but this is not really the point when it comes to this event.  Is it?

Holocaust denial is a crime in many countries – for its ugliness but also for its enormous lie.   It did happen and it has been proven to have happened and continues to be written about and substantiated repeatedly as fact. I have read extensively on subject from my teens.

It is a felony in many countries to express Holocaust denial and people go to jail.  I imagine this is a case for many who run into one. They can try to call them out to those in authority and it is very tempting.  I shall leave it at that.

It actually doesn’t make much sense for Jew Haters to deny it.  In the process of their hate, it should be something they cherish.  After all if you hate Jews, the death of millions should fill you with delight.  For some reason those bigots don’t express this.  They have decided that the Jews made it up for sympathy?  Profit?  Publicity?  I have no idea what they think. But when it hits close to ones own life – in any way – it baffles and disgusts.  Not enough to debate or argue the point with the bigot -that’s a losing proposition.  Deniers are cemented to the denial.  And I find them sickening.  Period.  I don’t want to know them. But it is important to know who they are.

But here is a far more provoking question.  How would one even go about creating such  a hoax?  The Nazis who created the factual Holocaust eventually got what they deserved at the war’s end. Those who tried to deny it or escape the legal system hid.  And what a life that must have been!   Determined men, like Wiesenthal and his dedicated seekers pursued them relentlessly.  They routed out so many  and were so diligent – a Nazi criminal on the lam must have been a nervous wreck (just like the Jews and others they sought, found and murdered).  But think about the idea of a hoax itself.  What would have inspired anyone to imagine this horror and supply specious evidence to prove it?   How could be done?  There was no social media or iPhones to create rumors or photoshopped evidence and who would have volunteered to take on the role of a skeletal, tortured victim or a corpse? The denier’s  usual comeback is that the numbers were inflated.  That it was not possible for such a thing to have been carried out on anything  (that sort of insults their heroes) but a small scale and it was therefore okay for something of this nature to take place – but not the way the attention starved bleeding hearts claimed.  But the facts betray the denial.  Not just anguished survivors told their stories; educated, erudite and relentless men – not wanting to simply take a survivors word did the research. They made it their business to dig deeply into the material that existed and supported the facts.

David Irving was one notorious man who insisted it was a hoax.  He was revealed in British court to be a liar and a bigot.   Neo Nazis, who should be proud of their clever and inspiring German  forebears , should embrace it as a stellar accomplishment.  Which makes the deniers an even more deluded crowd.  They can’t have it both ways. On the one hand these race-pure monsters did a very substantial job of making the Reich Judenfrei and at the same time, the deniers want it be a mythic hoax created by Jews to exaggerate exactly what?  Do they think the Reich did a monumental job or did they get blindsided by the Jews who made it up; this very act they love the Nazis for doing.  Which is it?

My recently discovered denier insists that the latter is true and the “Jews” made it much worse than it was – but how could even one murdered person, murdered for their race alone be okay?  A town of Jews or the starvation of a Jew (or a homosexual, or Rom or impaired person?) is okay?  What they would like us to believe is that it was an okay thing to murder Jews, but the ones who survived spun it to be a crime against humanity.  That damaged humans who escaped, invented their own history to match that of other survivors.  That Jews share a cosmic consciousness that  psychically collaborated  to tell the same story when questioned?  Seriously?  That we all think alike and remember the same things that, in their minds, didn’t happen?

This apparently is what my own personal denier believes.  This is what made me shake and fight nausea.

No, I did not say the name or the relationship. It is enough for me to know and it is enough for that person to know I know.  And now you know.  If you know me you may wonder and may even realize.  But I now know and that is more than I ever wanted.

Senior? Elder? AARP? Me? June 4, 2017

Posted by voolavex in common sense, marriage, Random thoughts, Social Issues.
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I grew up in the Baby Boomer years that began in 1945/46, I went through the usual “phases” that parents like to excuse or accuse their children of entering and leaving.  I never lived anywhere long enough to actually develop phases that are memorable now.  Food oddities that came and went and too many schools and angst and I suspect it was basically just getting to being “of age” and then it simply moved forward from there.  Once I achieved “of age”, I didn’t give it much thought until recently.  Now I realize that I never got the directions on how to be “a certain age” nor the final pamphlet that covered “age”.  I am neither crochety nor am I enfeebled.  My hair is a good combination of white and mostly dark brown, I am tall and still at a fine weight for my frame.  No tweaks,  no shots, no lifts – living in the heart of Hollywood can put a smart and still looking good person in morbid fear of the “better face”.  It is not better and here you see the sad results of just why it’s not really great idea. I do have crepey skin.  Lack of exercise, DNA or too many parties of yore.  Leggings, tights and long sleeves  are all useful for this condition.  I suspect I am getting a bit of arthritis – and it runs in both sides of family and I waited for years to join the clan.  A few twinges but nothing that makes me groan or complain.  When asked about my age I am usually thrilled with the reaction, as much as I  am startled myself when I think about it.  I have two adult children and several important friends.

I was raised as a little kid by the “aunts” and my grandmother.  When I sat down recently and realized how old they were when I was born,  these role models may have brought me to where I am right now.  These were old ladies.  Two widows and a “maiden” aunt.  And their embrace of being elderly was  epic.  Steel gray hair, blue rinsed hair and touched up hair.  Housedresses – the real deal.   Corsets.  Salmony pink lace-up, hook- up and lift-up boned custom made corsets.  And yes I knew how to lace them from any early age.  Huge undies, garters, hair nets – from the dime store to contain their always permed hair.  Always.  My grandmother was the youngest of the three and she was a tad more casual but it was not a visible tad for me. Two of them wore a little lipstick and a bit of rouge – but only on occasions.  One never did.  Stocking – one wore lisle and the other two wore daytime deniers (January was when they bought them) and each one had a secret place to hide their break luck money.  The most memorable was the”budge” neatly folded bills tucked  between ample bosoms and the bank, a garter pouch of fine suede where the real money was carried.  The other two had change purses or wallets.  And they all lived to old age – two past 95.

I realized early on what I had no intention of becoming.  I might have become many things but an old lady was not one of them.  So as I sit and realize that I do in fact qualify for that term, I have no idea what I am supposed to be.  Not a clue.  I curse like a sailor, pass comment on everyone and everything, speak my mind (that can be excruciating too) and still want to know more and more about more and more.

I am vain.  I improve the landscape with cosmetics and despair of my difficult hair – but I hate to go to the hairdresser.   I wear what I have always worn – and it still keeps me au courant  style no matter what the courant of the moment is. I cannot wear stilettos. It breaks my heart. And because I am not a French woman I fail at scarves.  I must have 100+.  Lots of good jewelry I seldom wear – but no bling.  Shoes and bags need to be leather, fabric has to be grown fiber and I realize it hasn’t ever been otherwise.

So here I am, entering a phase; dazed and annoyed at things like AARP. Especially AARP.  I hate AARP.  I hate their condescending advice and presumptuous codified ads that scream “YOU ARE OLD”.  We have a wildly unruly source of information now called the Internet – so I do know how to find glasses and Depends and ear trumpets and  canes and I’ve fallen buttons. I also have a full-time husband. I hate senior communities.  I hate oldster casino trips.  Dances for the Decrepit. (or Senior Mixers as they call them or did). I do like Bingo – but not enough to seek it out.

I suspect because I have no grandchildren I can still buy myself toys and play alone.  I can frolic as others have babies and grand babies and buy memorable gifts and get photos in return.  Is it the life I imagined for myself?  The one where I didn’t get old and feeble.  Not really, but since I have no idea how to prepare for it (just as I didn’t know how to prepare for marriage, pregnancy, toothaches or nearsightedness).  I suspect I will figure it out.  But not today.

 

 

Memorial Day 2017 May 29, 2017

Posted by voolavex in Social Issues, Technology.
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We have allowed the negative aspect of technology to rewrite our own thoughts and actions. It is much easier and makes killing – one or thousands -a viable pastime. And we cannot undo it. Buy a car. Soon it will drive itself. All you need to do is choose a color. Don’t have a clue? Ask Siri or Alexa. Why think at all? Bored? Don’t read a real book. Kindle or Nook it – they even help you with the hard words. Education? Sit at home and do it at your own pace. GPS? Damn Skippy. Never have a shot at playing at hide and seek. Pointless. Going shopping. The retailers already KNOW what you like and they know what you buy. The bank? No right to privacy there. And once we thought heat seeking missiles were scary. The Drone. Now you don’t even hear it coming. Do you doubt you will one day microchip your newborns? You will. Do you doubt that soon the act of creation will happen in a petri dish or worse. DO you doubt the Handmaid’s Tale (she wrote it ages ago). Orwell and Huxley imagined this world. So why not maim, kill and hate.
 
Once a person I knew (now deceased) accused my best friend of “softly massaging my brain” so I would leave him. Not true. I had my own brain and my own ideas and nothing much to persuade me to stay the course with a bastard, violent, liar.  What would happen now as we sit and happily ALLOW our brains to be massaged – the message is the massage is the message. and we eat it up. Think outside the box?  It’s just a bigger box.
 
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if there was a reset button? There is none. There is only an endless, but ever-morphing loop that has put us where we are today. I am not sure we got what we asked for or deserved; but it’s here.

My Mother’s Birthday April 26, 1923 -1978 April 26, 2017

Posted by voolavex in birthday, mother, serial monster, funeral, life baggage, loss, dead, death certificate, despicable, Domestic Violence, guilt, Mann & Mann, marriage, murder, My Mother, serial monster, Social Issues.
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Back in the days when domestic disputes were shameful and unreported, my mother was the dead body in a domestic murder.

In a small blue-collar town in Massachusetts. On January 24, 1978.  It was a long time ago and it was a moment ago.  It was the tragic finale to many phone calls and plane ticket reservations and telephone commiseration for a mother who simply couldn’t.  She fought back, she screamed, she saw a doctor, she drank, but she could not leave with my two much younger siblings, or the pony or the house or the lingering affection she carried for a man who was a serial monster.  Bigamist, philanderer, narcissist, sociopath and murderer.  One sib says many calls of service were made to the local police – their hands tied by 1977/1978 concepts and legalities.  Another sib tells of death threats  made to them on the night of my mother death.  I did not know anything about this part.  I only knew my mother wrote and cried and simply said “he” had a girlfriend and she was confused and didn’t know what to do.  At 54 she was probably menopausal. Not much to go on.  She didn’t want to move out with the children or leave the pets and the laundry list of excuses women have conjured for time immemorial.  I was in Los Angeles and not welcome in her house. (Actually on February 10, 1958 I was no longer welcome in her life.  At 12, I thought it was because he really loved her.)  I blame myself for not listening harder and asking more questions.  And I had no idea that physical violence was part of the picture.  Neither of my siblings (19+ and 15) called me to ask for help. My mother had pride that went before all else.  Including her funeral.

Her death certificate from that time reads  COD: undetermined.  A residual fear stops me from requesting a new one.  She will still be dead.

She was only 54. Today is her 95th birthday. May I say she was beautiful and gentle and kind? May I say by the time I arrived at her house, anything of sentimental value that had belonged to her was gone?  That her grieving husband knew I knew and it was not pleasant?  That I swallowed my rage, stepped back and stayed for the children ( I am my mother’s daughter)? That I drank and sobbed and that the tables overflowed with funeral meats and that 200+ attended her funeral in Boston? That mourners continued;  people I never knew, arrived in tears? That it was the same funeral home by her high school best friend’s parents? Mann & Mann. That I had played as small child in their huge house upstairs? That my family went back as close friends of the Manns? That the grieving husband read a sickening tribute?. And that my own father wept with me in stunned sorrow?

In 1978,  it was simply another domestic dispute. Perhaps still in the local police records – on paper in a box; with so many others of the time.  

There was no investigation.  I knew of no interviews with siblings. That police never asked me anything.  My grandmother thought it was a heart attack.  She had just lost her only child.  Was it mine to reveal?  Information continued to seep through and very long after  I found out the history of the man she had married in 1958.  From his children; who loved my mother.  I should have wondered more about the words of my dear step-brother who walked in, in 1978,  crying, and said to me, sotto voce, “what did he do to her?”

 I have always known it was murder.  I have always known he patiently waited.  I knew she did not wash down 40 or 50 pills with vodka.  She didn’t ever take Darvon and that’s what they found. I know he sat beside her and watched. I have no idea how he managed to make it happen.  He died five years later; alone  in a rented apartment in Lawrence; the other woman long gone.  He was soup when they found him.  Dead five days of a heart attack in a fall from the up high liquor shelf. One he needed a step stool to reach.  In a closed apartment on a sweltering summer day.

 

He was short and bald and had good teeth.

I could kill him again and again for his crime but she would not have wanted that.  And dead never ends. They would have been married twenty years on that February 10th.

She has been gone 39 years. Since the day my  broken heart and endless anger met all at once.  And no one of us leftover has ever been able to move on.  We try to unpack that valise, only to realize that some things travel with you forever,  in your life luggage.

Ben Carson, M.D. – The Dreamlife of a Fool March 7, 2017

Posted by voolavex in American History, Idiots in Government, Race and the Law, Social Issues.
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(Originally posted as “Won’t You Let US Take You on A Sea Cruise?”)

A little-known part of  American History has been revealed to us recently. And since it came from the mouth of an African-American – it should have been received with gratitude because it finally cleared up a long time argument in this country. – But some of us caught the comments and it bears further inquiry.  Oh that Dr. Ben Carson had expanded his words to include a timeline for the advent of Africans into this not yet country?  Even before this land became a new one conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men were created equal – Africans from the west coast of that great continent were pushing and shoving to board ships to take them to a better life in as early as 1444.  Spain gave “The Asiento” to Britain for the exclusive transport of these happy immigrants who sought a better life in the New World (no, I didn’t forget Pope Nicholas V who added his imprimatur.  in that same decade). You didn’t know that?    And who welcomed these dark-skinned human beings and granted them lifetime citizenship?  Why Maryland of course and it was a reversal of a previous law that allowed them access to Christianity and the freedom to move about the land. Yet by 1725 Virginia did see the founding of an African American Baptist church. Nonetheless, African religious customs of many countries were incorporated in that faith;  no Eurocentric Jesus as their savior.  By this time, there are estimated to be 75,000 brand new citizens – with guaranteed jobs,  in the colonies.  The creation of jobs appealed to the newcomers and despite the language issues – they increased the colonies’ profits enormously. (An aside about language – just as the wave of refugees in 1908 were a polyglot, so too were the Africans – despite the idea that these first “African-Americans”  all communicated in a sort of “lingua franca” – they didn’t.  The language on those ships was a linguistic Babylon; Hausa, Ibo,  Yoruba, Wolof and to some degree Swahili [although it is an Eastern African language] and small subgroups influenced by travel agents (mostly Arabs)  and other Europeans tongues who facilitated these voyages to a better life.   Are you as surprised at this hidden history as I was when I heard it – from the mouth of a descendant of those very immigrants?

 

Why have these facts not been in play for so many years?  Why did we just learn, from a Cabinet member, of this body of the events in the year 2017?  Who perpetuated this horrid scenario of “slave markets”, crowded ships and mistreatment when these Africans were, in fact, simply humans seeking a better life in a free land.  Why have we been exposed to the ugly propaganda of “slavery”.  Was the entire Civil War a hoax.  Alt-fact?  Fake history?  Were the “slave owning” Framers of our Constitution ( an aggregate of about 1400 “captives between them) a myth?  Why did we even invent a Civil War.?  “A house divided among itself shall perish” – a fiction?

 

When a physician – a man of medicine – reveals something that may actually be called a “bombshell” – who are we and who are the African-Americans to protest?  The so-called enslaved and stolen humans of Africa were no different than the wave of Europeans flooding New York Harbour – with their families searching for the streets paved with gold.  According to this revered man of medicine – we – as Americans – have been fed a bill of goods.  How will this nation absorb this news?  You tell me because I am well and truly confused.  I had a dream too.

 

Ref:  Kevin  C. Davis.  Ali A. and Alamin M. Mazrui

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