07 December 2010

This is the speech Obama SHOULD make.

"My fellow Americans, these are tough times. We all know it, we all feel it, we are all affected. It is in times like these that we need to pull together, each doing our best to live up to the ideals this country was founded on. To that end I am asking Congress to immediately implement a number of measures in order to raise revenues and lift our country out of the mire of debt and unemployment, and in order to protect the natural environment. I propose a new tax on all incomes over $250,000 a year. This tax will be progressive, so that the more a person made the higher the percentage of that income will be paid in taxes. I know that the idea of new taxes is onerous to many but right now we need to do what's best for the most. The good of the many outweighs the good of the few. This tax will not impoverish anyone, it will only be levied on those who already have more than they need to get by. Likewise corporations with over 100 employees will also see their taxes raised, and loopholes that have allowed multinational corporations to evade paying taxes must immediately be closed. We estimate that these measures will raise over $1 trillion in the next 10 years. A portion of that money is to be set aside for retooling factories for the manufacture of solar panels, windmills, and other green technologies. This will create jobs, lower our carbon footprint as a nation, and help us get on the right track with regards to global warming. These are just a few parts of the plan I will be presenting to Congress this week. When the new Congress convenes in January I will call upon each and every member to put aside their personal feelings and to work for the good of the nation. I ask you to let your congressional representatives and senators know what you want them to do, whether you want them to focus on their election campaign fund raising or to do the work of governance. I am also asking Congress to support an immediate drawdown in troop deployments abroad. My goal is to start closing US bases around the world, and to recall our forces. This will save over $5 billion per week! Last but not least I have set up a task force whose job it will be to collect ideas from you, the American people. No idea is too small for us to consider. What are your ideas for deficit reduction, for environmental protection, for economic recovery?
Thank you for the opportunity to serve."

This is the speech I wish Obama would make. I wrote it imagining I was writing from his point of view.

19 November 2010

I feel myself in the stream of life. The river. The ocean. Always in motion, bringing life and death and everything in between.

I wonder what is the effect on the human being of encountering the incomprehensible time and time again? Surely we each do this. Every human comes face to face with the mystery of life and death, the enormity of existence, the fact that we all die. And each death has it’s own uniqueness, just as each birth does, and each lifetime.

If I let myself feel it, this stream, this dream, flowing over and around and through me, that is some kind of awareness. And on it goes until it’s my turn, and then...

01 November 2010

Hi readers:

I am looking to do a number of short interviews with people post election to air on my show November 7. Anyone who is willing, please email me your phone number and a few times that will work for you. I will confirm a time and call you and we can go from there. I am hoping to hear from people all over the place! Thank you!


30 October 2010

The attention finally being given to the issue of gay kids and bullying is blowing my mind. I never thought I would live to see this. I stayed in the closet until I was in my mid 20’s. My family was pretty gay positive. My parents had gay friends. But I internalized the hate and loathing my peers expressed when they called me a faggot. I didn’t even know I was one until other kids bullied me and called me names. I lived through the hateful Civil Union debate in Vermont 10 years ago, which was really something, and now we have marriage equality. I never imagined I would live to see the day.

I watched Clint McCance apologize in an interview with Anderson Cooper. It is impossible to know if he is sincere or just a coward, but it seems that he learned something about how ignorant he had been...and isn't that what we want? Let the ignorant speak out and be educated and recant their ignorant statements.

Perhaps I am being too generous and McCance is just saying what he thinks people want to hear. Perhaps I am a fool for believing him even a little. He is clearly homophobic. You can see it when he talks about the issue. However, due to his cruel statements, has himself become the focus of hatred. He has received hateful email, threats, etc. That seems to have shocked him some.

When we choose to hate the hateful, we become hateful ourselves.

I am glad that there is now the It Gets Better Project on YouTube so people can speak out and so people can see that in fact, it does get better.

It’s been years since I went to a Gay Pride event, or did anything overtly political related to gay rights. I marched in DC in the 80’s, and in Burlington and Montpelier Vermont. I wrote letters to the editor, volunteered with a couple of gay positive non profit agencies. I am not “coming to terms” with my sexual orientation anymore, I just am who I am and pretty comfortably so. With all this attention being paid to these issues in the mainstream media I find myself revisiting my past as an observer now. I hear about gay and lesbian kids killing themselves because of the pain they cannot bear, and I remember well how it felt to perceive myself as not part of the world of people. Sure I had friends, but in my teens and early 20’s I felt separated from everyone by my secret, which I felt ashamed of. It wasn’t until I was 25 that someone said to me for the first time “Being gay is a good thing.” That was an amazing powerful experience which was a catalyst for me. I am grateful to that person.

In many western industrialized countries being gay or lesbian is mostly accepted. In the US there is always this writhing religious extremism trying to remake the country in it’s own image, so we see right wing evangelical christians mainly promoting hate and intolerance of GLBT people. Modern Judaism doesn’t really address the issue. There certainly are no jews out there ranting against gay people as there are christians. Islam also is not presenting any uber message in this country as regards to sexual orientation. Of course Muslims have other problems to deal with in this country and in the world.

There have always been people who were not heterosexual, and there always will be. Maybe Clint McCance has had a real wake-up call. Maybe others will too. I hope that whoever is out there preaching intolerance, hate, nonacceptance; I hope and wish that you would understand how much you are hurting people, and knock it the fuck off. You have no right.

Gee I guess I still have some angry feelings about all this.

This week’s radio show is for Hallowe’en. My guests talk about earth energy and connectedness; about ancestors and our relationship with death, and about the love which earth based spirituality focuses on. I’m very happy about the episode, I think it’s good. I also think it’s about the same core issue I’ve been discussing, which is, how we can choose connection over disaffection, be it earth connection, human connection, or something else. Hate is not part of the solution, no matter what. It just isn’t. Anger that one uses to propel sound action is great. Dwelling in a space of anger and putrid fear of “other” is just not healthy. Fear of death, fear of other, fear of truly liberating oneself and being free; these drive so many to such lengths, and yet it is not necessary.

All of us have our triggers and times when we get angry, sometimes mean, even hateful. The solution is to see it, name it, and then to touch the Earth and acknowledge the reality of life on this planet, however you perceive it, and move on from the ick to your real work.