Wise Women Won't Wait Any More

Wise Women Won't Wait Any More

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

USA trails behind 73 other nations in women in legislatures

By Faith Chatham - January 13, 2019
The USA, after making more gains in representation by women than in the women than in the history of this nation, still trails behind 73 other nations in the world in the percent of women serving in Legislatures and Parliaments.
81% of the world's Parliaments /Legislatures were led by men in 2018. More than half of the countries of the world apply a gender minimum/quota for their legislative bodies.
In the USA the 116th Congress has 24% female in the house and 25% in the Senate.
Rawanda has 61%; Mexico has 48%; Cuba and Bolivia have 32%; France has 40%; Great Britain has 32%; Germany has 31%; USA has 24%
Research shows that on average a woman elected to the Legislature is more qualified (education and related experience) than the average male legislator because women seeking higher office are held to different standards than men. In the USA, our current Congress has fewer veterans than previously, but more of recently elected veterans who were elected are women.
There is a stark partisan difference in the roles of women in government. Historically, Democrats are more supportive of women and minorities serving in elected office.

Democratic women candidates are currently turning out higher numbers of votes in many key states and nationally than any of their male or female predecessors.It is difficult to change the perception that it requires a man to win the office.

Historically, women in Texas have rarely served in higher office. In the history of the state and during the years Texas was a Republic, only two women have served as Governor.
The first Black American elected to the Texas Senate (following Reconstruction) was Barbara Jordan. She was truly a trailblazer.
State Senator Jordan continued and won a seat in the US Congress:

At that time, there were ten Black Americans serving in the US Congress. The Hon. Congresswoman from NY, Shirley Chisholm ran for President. She cited the perception that only a white man could serve as President, or as head of University or in business as the reason she ran. She said:
"If I stood on my head, a lot of people wouldn't believe that I am serious. If you are serious, you do not sit back like a reluctant dragon and expect that somebody is going to give you the nomination. You get out and get to the American people, in the highways the by ways here look at me in terms of what I can do the prescribed roles that this nation has given to women and the prescribed roles that have been given to Blacks.This country needs the talents, the intellect, and the capabilities of human beings. There are brilliant women in this country and there are brilliant men. There are stupid women and there are stupid men. There is no psychological test yet which shows that one sex has the superiority of great cranial matter over the other sex.... I am no ordinary woman running out here for president. Before I even went to the United States Congress I knew I would have to be two, three or four times as good than many of the gentlemen in the Congress because of who I am. I am aware of double and triple standards so I make sure I fit the standards before I get out here...I am sick and tired of people not look at me in terms of my humanity and my capabilities.
,,, I don't have any money. One of the gentlemen out here said 'if Shirley Chisholm had any money, we'd have to scurry for cover. You know they w
Either we want change or we like the idea of taking about change. To bring about changed in this nation So many young people told me: Shirley you have a national voice You cannot make a difference in this nation you have to get out of the system and Give me a chance to try it this time. Come with me on the Chisholm Trail. Because if we want
If you have a hang up because I am black and you're a racist I can't change that. If you have a hang up, you're sexist because I'm a woman. I can't help that. My bones are so fixed. I can't go to Denmark and get an operation.

Where is this nation going to get ...
God help them if they are outdoors and the wind blows that speech away. They can't even talk. Unless you have loads of money you can't even They can move from one issue to another issues and have ten different positions in the same state. No wonder people do not trust the leaders of our nation because they do nothing but talk with forked tongues.
...He who pays the piper calls the tune. That is why people are distrusting our politicians because by the time they get to the White House, they have to take care of the i other interest first before they take care of the interests of the American people.
 And they don't hear us. It means that they really don't have to listen to you because you have not made politics important enough in your lives to begin start doing something about it on the local level, on the state level and pulling out some of those Congressmen who are constantly giving he authorizations and making the appropriations..
You have abdicated your citizenship rights and your responsibilities by saying you are fed up I don't want to be
you cannot make a difference.
By abdicating it you are getting what you deserve
You have the power. Don't go out there and just give your voted to someone because he is just a good Democrat or he is handsome or he talks nicely or something. Go and look at the record for the last 8 or 10 years and see if they have the commitment to the people. You get caught up. You get caught up in how the people supporting certain candidates come into your community and open up the storefront. You get caught up. You go along.
Every man, woman, individual who can vote has the right to cast their vote for the right to cast their vote for the individual who can guide this ship of state in the direction that it surely should be guided.
If I were not black, and if I were not a woman, if I were a white male I would get much more attention in terms of what I am doing at this moment in this nation at this hour.
 To look at the position of this country in terms of espousal of egalatrian principals,
millions of dollars taxpayer money is going abroad or economic of financial assistance to prompt up the administrations of military dictorships who are who are oppressing and repressing their own citizens
What happens to these egalatarian principles when our dollar goes abroad
I would cut off every cent of your money, not my money, your money which is going to prompt up these dictatorships in these countries where their leaders are oppressing and repressing their own people.

Texas Legislature is addressing sexual assault and human trafficking

 By Faith Chatham - March 31, 2018

Of all the bills I have read this year, the bill I most want to see passed 
is SB SB 2384 by Sen Kirk Watson and Donna Howard's companion 
HB 1590.
This legislation strengthens the framework of Office of Sexual Assault Survivors Assistance (under the Governor's Office of Criminal Justice). It stipulates that the Governor appoint a Director and the Director be allowed to hire staff.
Changes in the language of this bill clarifies the duties and responsibilities of the office in addressing the mission of preventing sexual assault, prosecuting and providing services to survivors through communication and coordination with all agencies dealing with sexual assault or survivors. This bill links law enforcement, social work, medical examiners, training, SAFE sites, prosecution and survivors resources together. It is intended to minimize some of the silos and dark holes which frustrate law enforcement, social workers, prosecutors, and survivors.

There are over 200 bills this session in both houses addressing sexual assault, rape, trafficking and harassment. This bill provides clarification of an agency which should be functioning as a clearing house for information and resources which could reduce the number of victims by improving services to survivors and prosecutors.

These bills are all part of a mosaic. I see them each as one of the tiles making up the whole with  Senate Bill 2384 which improves the Office of Sexual Assault Survivors Services as the framework and foundation for the entire mission of reducing the number of victims and serving those who are survivors.

Instead of the Attorney General getting to select any "individual with knowledge of sexual assault" to establish the protocols for collecting and processing sexual assault evidence kits, it stipulates that the Attorney General consult with the Office of Sexual Assault Survivors Services.
This office is charged with collecting compiling and reporting data on sexual assault and survivors resources by council of government districts.

There are other important bills which address part of the mission such as:
HB 152 (Minjarez) which addresses the collection storage and analysis of rape kit evidence and
HB 467 (Miller) Retention of records of sexual assault by hospital and
HB 3106 (Goldman) requires law enforcement to enter sexual assault data into the Texas Data Exchange System
HB 2339 (Meza) Relating to the entry into the Texas Crime Information Center of information concerning the release on bond of persons charged with committing a violent offense

Rep. Neave's HB 401 Creation of Texas Sexual Assault Evidentiary Council is a good idea. It could be part of the Office of Sexual Assault Survivors Services.

Several bills address correct data.
HB 2678 (Zwiener) Compilation and reports of statistics involving sexual assault victims who receive a forensic medical examination before reporting the assault to law enforcement.
HB 3106 (Goldman) requires law enforcement to enter sexual assault data into the Texas Data Exchange System.

In the Senate the major data collection/reporting bill is SB 587 (Watson) Relating to the collection and reporting of information relating to the investigation and prosecution of sexual assault offenses.
ll of these initiatives rely on funding. Senator Jane Nelsons SB 1 and the House HB 1 both provide increased funding for increases funding for Rape Crisis Centers, and $50 M to double Crime Lab to test rape kits, and more funding for forensic nurse examiners.

To read the text of these bills or to see where in the pipeline the bill is currently go to: https://capitol.texas.gov/BillLookup/BillNumber.aspx

Note: This article only skims through the bills. There are other important bills which define sexual assault, decriminalize homosexual behavior, or address human trafficking or rape on college campuses or molestation of public school children. Passage of some of the bills will improve training in childhood trauma and sexual assault for teachers, school personnel and law enforcement. Other bills improve training for law enforcement and nurse examiners. Much of this work was begun in prior legislative session and continued during the months while the Legislature was not in session. Collectively, it is evident that members of the Texas House and Senate on both sides of the aisle are evaluating the problems and the process and seeking solutions to improve the process. They are mission oriented in seeking to reduce the number of victims (survivors) through services which improve law enforcement/prosecution of perpetrators and services which assist the survivors.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

David Whitley is a dismal failure as SOS of Texas.

By Faith Chatham - Feb. 7, 2019
The Texas Tribune reported: State Rep. Rafael Anchia ...wanted to know: Did Whitley know for sure that any of the (95K registered voters) on the list SOS David Whitley had turned over to the Attorney General had committed crimes by voting as noncitizens?
“No,” Whitley answered, according to Anchia.
“And I said, ‘Well, isn’t it the protocol that you investigate and, if you find facts, you turn it over to the AG?”
“I do not have an answer for that,” Whitley responded, according to Anchia’s recollection of the Monday meeting.
The Senate Nominations Committee meets today (Thursday, Feb. 7) at 9 a.m. in E2.106 to consider David Whitely's confirmation as SOS. Gov. Abbott appointed him in mid Dec. 2018 but he must be confirmed by the Senate.
The former Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor is in over his head. He has demonstrated that he falls painfully short in performing due diligence before making statements to the press, releasing data to counties and before turning people over to the Attorney General. We need a better candidate for SOS.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Mitch McConnell hides from freshman Congresswomen

By Faith Chatham - Jan. 17, 2019
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell evaded four freshmen congresswomen who chased him around the Capitol Wednesday.  Rep. Jahana Hayes of Connecticut, Lauren Underwood of Illinois, Katie Hill of California and New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez pursued McConnell. They visited his Capitol office, cloakroom, went to the Senate floor and even rode the subway to a suite in another office building asking: "Where is Mitch? He's not in his office. He's not on the floor. We've looked in the cloak room."
“He seems to be running away from us,” said Rep. Ocasio-Cortez. They dropped off a letter signed by 38 freshmen members of Congress, calling on McConnell to call ending the shut-down to  vote.  Frustration that the House passed multiple bills to reopen the government and to allow 800,000 furloughed federal workers to be paid, but McConnell has refused to bring any of them to the Senate floor for a vote, the four women, who describe themselves as 'a former school teacher, nurse,  a former non-profit worker. and most recently a bartender' stated that they are not part of the millionaire class. "Working people deserve to be paid."
“At this point, the only thing left is for us to make noise and that’s exactly what we’re doing,” Hill said after they dropped off a letter signed by 38 House freshmen to McConnell’s office asking him to call a vote.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Wearing Our Resistence

WHITE, 100 % Cotton Fruit of the Loom Tee
Not available in stores


Monday, January 7, 2019

Explain to me again why we must have a man on the top of the ticket to win?

By Faith Chatham - Jan. 7, 2019

Lupe Valdez had a smaller war chest than any of the previous five Texas governor Democratic nominees, yet got more votes than the four previous male nominees and of Wendy Davis. Lupe also got the most votes in a primary featuring 6 men. She was only a few points shy of avoiding a run-off.

Hillary Clinton's campaign did not deploy a field team to Texas in 2016 until the last six weeks of he campaign, yet she got more votes than any previous Democratic Nominee on the ballot in Texas. More Texans voted for Hillary, a state where little advertising was spent, than in most of the battle ground states where the campaign invested heavily.

In 2018, in every Congressional District in Texas where there was a woman running in the Democratic Primary except 2, the woman won.

Women are running and women are winning. So explain to me again. Help me understand why it is necessary for a man to be on the top of the ticket in 2020 for Democrats to win?

Granted, 60% of Republican men have been reported to say that they do not want to see a woman elected President in their lifetime. That leaves 40% of the Republican men who  do not seem to mind.  And since all Democratic men and all Republican men combined make up less than 49% of the US Population, it seems to me that the 60% of women hating Republican men are definately in the minority.

I think what we need to do is to continue registering and getting progressives out to vote. 

We need to continue changing the culture by changing women. We need to continue showing women that when we run, we do win. When we win, we do serve. When we serve, we improve things for us, for our families, for our communities, for our nation and the world.

Let's continue reminding people that:

And that Ann Richards ignored them when ...

Despite what they said to Sylvia Garcia and Veronica Escobar:

Nellie Ross ignored them when ...

Lupe Valdez didn't see why she couldn't be sheriff when ..

They told Barbara Jordan:

When she considered running for Congress...

It's nothing new. Women have been hearing the same tired ole lines:

If you lose an election, the nay sayers get louder:
In 2018, Terry Meza beat the GOP male incumbent by more than 4,000 votes.

Hillary Clinton heard:

Donors looked at Hillary's numbers and decided that many districts they thought were "too Red to win" weren't quite so red. They gave money to challengers and...

So that brings us back to where we began. Women are more than 51% of the US Population. We comprise 24% of the House and 25% of the Senate. In 2018, in Texas in all US Congressional Districts except two, women beat every man on the ballot. Similar number were reflected in returns in other states. 

Democrats have a strong track-record of electing women and minorities to public office. Only 60% of the White male Republicans says they do not want to see a woman elected president in their lifetime. 

For example, if Republicans have been getting 55% to 60% of the vote and half of them are men,
then only 27.5% to 30% of the voters are Republican men. Only 60% of the Republican men say they don't want to see a woman elected President in their lifetime -- so that is only 60% of 27.5% to 30% of the voters. That is far from being a majority. It is probable that a significant number of the remaining 40% of Republican men and of the Republican women are open to voting for a qualified woman. Democratic men have been voting for women for decades. Democratic women are running and helping other women win.

So, again, explain to me why it is so important to run a man at the top of the ticket? 

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Fresh Zucchini Cornbread

By Faith Chatham - Jan. 6, 2019

1 pkg yellow corn bread mix
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup milk (Almond milk works fine)
1 zucchini squash sliced fine and diced
1/2 onion, diced
1/4 tsp of finely chopped fresh thyme
1/2 tsp of chopped cilantro

Mix together and bake in oiled pan  for 20 minutes at 350 degrees or until brown
Serves 6.

Optional a small can of drained yellow corn and/or a half-cup of cheese can be blended in before baking.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Preparing for 2019

By Faith Chatham - January 1, 2019

It is 2019. What are the most important things to experience and accomplish this year? What must be done to for each of us to individually enjoy what we want to enjoy, and to accomplish what we want to accomplish?

For me, one thing on my to do list is cleaning the kitchen. I let things slide when I'm involved in causes or projects. The exterminators treated the apt. while I was in San Antonio. Everything is out of the cabinets. I've been running the dishwasher continuously since getting home. Each load of dishes placed in a recently cleaned cupboard shelf, each tray of silver arranged, instead of hastily flung into a drawer, moves me closer toward being ready to proceed with the new year. By the end of today, the kitchen and dining area will be probably be in better shape than it will probably be any other time in the coming year. Then I will move to bedroom closets. Hopefully within a week this rare obsession with orderliness will spill over into the studio.

I am not a tidy spic and span priority person. I live in creative, mental, research, literary, political and artistic worlds. When in those creative zones, I am oblivious to food, clocks, germs, clutter, sleep. So, whenever a rare spell of obsessive straightening and scrubbing overshadows me, I try to ride it as long, and as far, as it can be sustained, because it may be months before it enters my door again. The longer it remains outside, the harder it gets to find space to work inside.

This year there is lots of work to be done. I feel characters, images, causes, and projects pushing to get out.

There are relics here of people and causes I respect and value. I still have evidence of activism in Ready for Hillary and Hillary 2016 intermingled with 2018 buttons for Lupe, Kim, Terry, Gina, MJ, Vikki, Victoria, Shirley, Sheryl, Sylvia, Rhetta, Beverly, Ana Maria and others scattered about.

It is nice to see that the phrases on cards and posters have changed from messaging in 2014. Then we were trying to help Texans understand how few Dems, minorities, veterans and women Texans sent to Congress. We need to acknowledge the scope of a problem before we can inspire enough people to help change it. Now the messages are targeting getting specific Democrats, specific women, specific veterans, specific minorities elected to office.

This year, despite the harm wrought by Donald Trump and his enablers, we have victories to celebrate. On Jan. 3rd in DC over 100 women will be seated in the US House when the new Congress is sworn in.  I look forward to being in the gallery of the Texas Capitol Jan 8th to see friends seated as newly elected Senators and State Representatives. We've made progress. We have a long way to go. Now we have a few more warriors in place to watch the backs of the ethical and brave and to carry the torch in legislative relays.

I want 2019 to be more than just the year when we share our stories and say "Me Too!' I want it to be the year when those who enable or refuse to pursue and punish serial rapists are removed. This should be the year when instead of 1 out of 3 women and 1 out of 5 men being survivors, it becomes the year when the majority of perpetrators are stopped and prevented from every violating any boy or girl, man or woman every again. Instead of #METOO I want to see #ZeroTolerance.

I truly hope and pray that the Trump administration comes to a speedy, and abrupt end. We need to rid this nation, and our psyche, from the excesses, corruption and violation of that man and his henchmen and enablers. I hope both Trump and Pence are nothing more than a footnote by March of this year. We need to push the RESET button and begin anew. These are some of the things which are on my heart. They are goals and causes worth working for, worth enduring clutter and other inconveniences to accomplish jointly with others who care and sacrifice. Caring also means helping worthy people have the means to step forward to run for office and to win in 2020. Those of us who are older owe it to those who protected and nurtured us when we were young and to those who are younger and deserve to be nurtured and mentored.

This may be the year to write and publish your book

By Faith Chatham - January 1, 2019

Many of the people on this list will write and publish this year. Some, even some who have previously used publishers, may decide to self-publish. There is no longer a horrible stigma attached to self-publishing. In some instances, it is the best route.

There are pitfalls which should be avoided. A good editor is crucial. Marketing is essential. Actually writing, and getting the book printed, is a milestone marking when the really hard work begins. It is also when it is essential to sift through the vendors who tout how much they can help you get your book read and promoted.

The fee may seem reasonable and affordable, but if the author is required to pay to get the book reviewed, it is probably a scam. Avoid any company which charges an author a fee to have a reviewer read and post a review of the book It is not the author's responsibility (or role) to pay a reviewer. It is the publications who pays the reviewer for content. It may be called a "book promotion package" which "includes an independent review" of your book. If you pay for it, the "independence" becomes suspect. You paying for the review lessens the value of having your book reviewed!

Now I am not referring to having someone read your unpublished work to give you feedback to help you improve it before you publish it. That is a legitimate part of the editing process and it is appropriate to pay for their time.

A company charging an author to have their employee read and review a published book so that company can post the review on their website, or in their publication, is a different thing. DO NOT FALL for that. Even if they have been in business doing this for years, it is still a shady practice.

The more authors they suck in and charge marketing/book review fees, the more readers they need. Not everyone is qualified to write a credible literary review.

Things to know:
Do their reviewers have literary or publishing backgrounds, education, publishing resumes?
Do they have expertise evaluating books in your field? If they do not know history, they are not qualified to evaluate a history book. You do not want an artist evaluating a physics book or an engineer without art history expertise reviewing an art book. Those who have only reviewed prose and have read few poems should not be assigned to write reviews on volumes of poetry.

Once a review is published, it is too late. Bad reviews, even by (or especially by) writers who are not qualified to review books in that particular field, can do significant harm to potential book sales. Some books deserve bad reviews. Some good books get bad reviews. Some reviews are simply wrong. Avoid getting a WRONG review if you can. Do not pay someone who probably is not qualified to review your book and risk paying for a WRONG review.

Publications have the right to pay writers/reviewers for  content to publish in their periodical or on their website. This is standard industry practice and is ethical. Authors have no control over the review or whose review is published. The publication has a responsibility to carefully vet their writers. The reputation of the publications rests on the quality and integrity of the work they publish. 

There are some companies which resemble publications which publish independent reviews. RESEMBLE and INDEPENDENT are the key phrases. Some companies offer authors marketing promotion packages which include advertising space and a review of their book. To casual observers, these site may seem similar to more reputable literary review publications because they contain book reviews.  The difference is WHO writes the reviews, the credentials of those who write the reviews and who pays for the content in the review. If the author pays for it, it is really advertising not an independent review. If you are paying for advertising you should have control over the message. Frequently, with these companies which offer marketing packages including book reviews, the author has little control over anything once they pay their fee. They are inviting a company to assign their book to someone who may or may not have any expertise in reviewing books of that genre. hey probably do not attract reviewers from the academic//publishing world. If they advertise for people to read and review their books and pay for the reviews with Amazon gift cards  BEWARE. Credible book reviewers with credentials in publishing and academics rarely work for Amazon gift cards!

When a company offers to review your book for a fee which you (the author) pays them, BEWARE!

So, what do you do? You want your book reviewed by someone who is credible in your field. People who have THOSE kinds of credentials are probably not going to write a review for a $20 Amazon gift card. They are not going to advertise to authors offering to review books for a fee. How do you find them? How do you get them to review your book?

Some people engage literary agents who have contacts with people who review and publish book reviews. Some people use publishing companies who have contacts with people who review and publish book reviews. Some authors have friends who know people qualified to review books in certain genre or fields. Some people know professors who need publishing credits who sometimes write book reviews and submit them to various literary journals and periodicals. They will not ask an author for a fee. They may welcome a copy of your book. You can query university literature department heads or faculty members. If they write a review it will be independent. Their academic reputation depends upon the reasonableness and validity of what they publish.

There are other ways to get your book reviewed without paying for it. Google "book review no fee". Invest in copies of your book and postage to send to reputable literary reviewers / publication who publish truly independent reviews. If you self-published send only to those publications which review books which are self-published.

Marketing your book is not easy. It is time consuming and costs money. You should decide how much of your time and money it is REASONABLE to invest in promoting thus book.

Most writers prefer writing to promoting. Weigh how important your current or "next" project is. It is hard to think out of the marketing/promoting side of your brain while you are writing, creating, or polishing a current literary project.  This is why authors usually sell rights to their work to publishing houses. 

When selling rights, it is important to evaluate the publishers track record on promoting and marketing authors of your genre. Sometimes it is worthwhile to make less money per volume sold if your work is marketed and distributed by a company which gets it marketed and sold to many more people than you would without them. Weigh the benefit with the cost and do not discount the value of your time, especially if you have other projects you are working on or want or need to be working on.

Evaluate how important it is to you to devote your resources to promoting this particular book. Some books are more for family and friends or your current circle of peers. If this particular book is more for yourself, your family and friends, then self-publish and promote it to family, friends and within your circle of peers. There is no need to spend a lot on promotion  Invest your time and resources into your next project. That may be the book which has wider appeal and should reach a broader audience. Write it, and develop a strategy to get that book out there where it will truly be independently reviewed and marketed to that broader audience.

Think about it. Is this book a learning experience, preparing you to write your great novel or definitive work of your career? Treat it accordingly.  Don't underestimate it and don't try to make it more than it is.  Know your worth. Create what you can. Release it. Give it the respect (meaning time and resources) it deserves. Don't give it too much or too little. Decide if you want to put your time into marketing and promoting it, if you prefer to pay someone else to do that for you, or if you simply want to move on to the next project.

Do not let one book or one literary project stall you from creating something better. Write it, polish it, release it and move on!

Monday, December 24, 2018

Switch Dimensions

By Faith Chatham - December 23,
Sometimes we just simply need to tune out the clutter which sucks the air out of the room. When opening a social media wall or turning on the television fills up the space with despicable human excrement, it is beneficial to switch dimensions.

We can do that by focusing on friends and family, getting immersed in holiday chaos, or puttering in a garden. Seeing pet video's posted on Facebook is a relief these days.

I'm enjoying sitting in my sister's living room looking at her Christmas Tree and letting her serve me hot chocolate.

We are discussing making Bread Pudding for Christmas Dinner and Quiche for Christmas Eve Brunch. I've recommended drinking the rum instead of using it in pudding. This is a great break from continually hearing about the shut-down, realizing that children are sleeping under mylar blankest without toys or cherished, trusted adults to hold and comfort them this Christmas, that the Donald thinks his warped ways are progress and some in this nation are warped enough to agree with him.

This year I am especially appreciative of the efforts of the ACLU and other organizations who are working tirelessly to relieve some of the unnecessary suffering inflicted by our government on the innocent and upon the vulnerable.

It is comforting to sit with my sister and look at her Christmas Tree and remember the people who nurtured and protected us. I know we have battles to wage next year. We have women and children to rescue, politicians to support, and some to oppose. It will not be a year when we can sit passively, trusting that all will be well with our state, nation or the world if we leave things to others or to happenstance.

Tonight, it is necessary to switch dimensions for a few hours and enjoy the moment, even though I realize that many in this world are so threatened and frightened that they have little opportunity to enjoy anything.  I will fight for them with all my might once I tune-out for a few hours the bombardment of the despot who sucks the air out of space where he neither belongs nor understands, nor values. Soon, by some means, we will be free of him. Until then, we persevere, we resist, we write, we share, we verify, we study, we research, and we value those who are discounted and sorely abused.

Faith's Christmas Eve Leek Quiche

1 stalk of Leeks cut up
salt and pepper to taste
2 pads of butter
1/8 cup cheddar cheese
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
6 eggs beaten throughly
1 pie crust

Saute leeks in butter
Add to beaten eggs
Add grated cheddar and mozzarella cheese, salt and parsley to the beaten eggs.
Pour into prepared pie crust.
Bake in heated 350 degree oven until the eggs are done and the pie crust is lightly brown.
Taste good served warn or chilled.

Faith's Leeks and Potato Casserole

1 stalk of Leeks, cut up
Five potatoes, sliced thin long wise
1 can evaporated milk
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1 teaspooon to 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 cup cheddar cheese
Salt to taste
Crushed black pepper to taste.

Wash and salt the sliced potatoes.
Mix them in a casserole dish with the sliced leeks
Sprinkle in the shredded mozzarella cheese.
Pour in one can of evaporated milk
Sprinkle one layer of shredded cheddar cheese on top of the casserole

Bake in a 350 degree oven until the potatoes are soft (about 30 to 40 minutes).

When the cheese on top melts, take out of oven and cover with a second layer of cheddar cheese and sprinkle lightly with crushed black pepper.  Return to oven and bake until layer of cheese on top melts.

Cool slightly before serving.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

What Has Become the Quintessential Question of Our Time?

By Carolyn Chatham - Wise Woman Press.net September 11, 2018
How to make sense of the tsunami of information that bombards us daily, hourly, minute by minute
. The serfs knew only what they were told by their masters. The ordinary person of the middle ages knew only what the church told him. The renaissance and then the age of reason opened the valve of knowledge to many more people. Knowledge had value. It was something not everyone could have. It gave a person status and power.
Now technology has far outstripped our ability to create meaning from information. Unless we have a matrix by which to decipher, organize, and evaluate information, it is not only useless, it is crippling. If a little information is, as the saying goes, a dangerous thing, too much information is a debilitating thing. Knowing a little, but not enough can lead to the wrong conclusions and actions. Being inundated with too much information can lead to paralysis, or to feeding any belief we need to feed, or to wrong action.We can easily find the stories that nurture our paradigms, that "prove" our points, regardless of the validity of our paradigms.

How do we learn to filter,evaluate,accept, or reject information based on reliability and accuracy rather than emotion? Are we able or willing to learn that way, or is the average person incapable of rejecting emotion and comfort over logic and fact?

Some people find their filters by choosing Fox News. Some listen to Alex Jones. Some listen to their church leaders or preachers. Some search out sources that are more reliable, that attempt to be fact based.

Recently Tom Heger and I were discussing politics. He told me the story of two men, one a farmer, the other a "progressive." The progressive was trying to convince the farmer we meed more regulations. The progressive laid out his reasoning layer after layer, but the farmer maintained that regulations are bad. Finally the progressive said,"And it killed the cows." Then the farmer agreed. 
We have to get to the cows in our political conversations. Everybody has a cow. We have to know what it is to move the argument past the road block.

Also, everybody has a paradigm. Sometimes it's just about having a paradigm that is so different from our own that discussion is fruitless. We don't have to love the fascists, but it's good to understand them and know one when we meet one.
When selecting our reading materials, choosing the channel on our TV, clicking on stories, we need to be aware of our own cows and paradigms and choose fact over emotion. Thought, then speech, then action. 

I will be the arrow straight and true
that pierces your enemy
through and through
So long as you know the arrow flies
only as true 
as the archer's eyes
I will be your arrow straight and sure
so notch me now 
and let me soar
            Published in Those Bones that Float About, 2018

Carolyn publishes political and social commentary,  literary reviews and poetry on WISE WOMAN PRESS.net

Her book,THOSE BONES THAT FLOAT ABOUT, is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble