Why I Can’t Vote for Hillary

So I realized a few days ago that I had written a blog about the leadership faults of Donald Trump. That was before he became the Republican nominee, etc. I stand by what I said, you can read that here.

But after much discussion (both in my head and with others), I’ve come to the conclusion that I can’t vote for Hillary Clinton. Here’s why and how I came to that conclusion.

  1. Leaders are supposed to represent us. I can’t support someone who so vehemently upholds abortion and homosexual marriage. I don’t believe either is right. People will make their own decisions, regardless of the law, but I can’t, in good conscience, cast my vote for someone who will stand for things I can’t support. (Ironically, I hope Trump learns to be more diplomatic, because I would hate for him to show his immaturity when representing the USA).
  2. The government isn’t supposed to take care of us. That’s one of the strongest points I’ve heard from Christians on why they’re voting for Hillary. As Christians, we’re supposed to take care of the poor, the weak, and the helpless. What’s the point of banning abortion if nobody cares for that mother, or her child, after the birth? Which is a VERY good point. HOWEVER, the government sucks at taking care of people. It’s a big, unwieldy machine, it takes care of some people who don’t actually need it and passes over others who actually do. That’s why, as Christians, we’re supposed to take care of our own neighbors, in our own communities. It’s easy for deserving, needy people to be passed over by the government. It’s really difficult for those same people to be passed over by their friends and neighbors. We can’t abdicate our responsibility because the government is supposed to be doing it. They don’t do a good job. We would be much more effective if we took own hard-earned money home, found a friend/neighbor who needed it, and bought them food and met their other needs.
    1. When I was growing up, we had neighbors across the street who received all sorts of government assistance. Clothes, food stamps, you name it. But that’s not what they needed. After they left, we bought the property and found outbuildings caked with clothes, baby stuff, and toys. So much waste. But as their neighbors, we could see they didn’t need all that stuff. It could have gone to a family who really needed it.
    2. In contrast, I knew several staff during college who really did need help, but couldn’t get government assistance because they had a job and/or didn’t know how to work the system.
    3. I’ve met dozens of people on disability who are actually physically and mentally able to hold down a job. But they’ve learned how to manipulate the system.
  3. ObamaCare does not make business sense and should be destroyed. It’s a good idea, but unfortunately, there’s a reason a lot of people weren’t being covered by normal health insurance. It drives prices way too high for normal people with no health issues. Instead of trying to get health insurance for everyone, let’s find out why healthcare is so expensive. Is it malpractice insurance? Is it the nature of a non-competitive system? Whatever it is, find a way to make healthcare more affordable, instead of trying to pay everyone’s bills without question. Again, the government sucks at taking care of people.
    1. I know a family who, because of ObamaCare, was paying $1,200, for just them and ONE kid. And they just got a letter saying that, in 2017, it would go up to $1,800 per month. That’s ridiculous. You could buy a good car for that much. That is not “affordable healthcare.” And if you’ve been listening to anyone talk about ObamaCare, you know that it’s pretty bad. Once again, the government is not good at taking care of people, and that’s not their job anyway.

Final note: This has nothing to do with Hillary as a person. She has a lot of experience and could potentially be a good leader. But for the reasons above, I cannot vote for her. Her party stance is not feasibly sensible. I would hate to vote for Trump, either, but I might have to… 😦

End of the Day…

At the end of the day, when we’re slipping away,
I wonder if we’ll wonder what we did today.

My daddy always asked, did you leave it better than you found it?
When I’m hurtling to my death, I’ll wonder that. Did I leave this earth better than I found it?

If we all leave this earth better than when we found it, this world would be a lovely place.

What am I doing right now to leave the world better than I found it? What did I do today? We all know that the sum of our days equals our life. Each day left unchanged will one day equal a life without change.

So what on earth did I waste my day on?

Training Mommy

So I was walking through the store the other day. There was a kid stuck in a cart who was desperate for his moms attention. Over and over and over he yapped, “Mommy, mommy, mommy, look at me, mommy.” I think he was asking for a toy. Every time she would come into reach, he would try to tap her. He was getting so obnoxious everyone in the store was taking notice and avoiding the area.

In a final last resort, the child wailed, “Mommy, owwwwwww!! Mommy, that hurts!” She was nowhere near him and he obviously wasn’t hurt, but somewhere he had learned that those words would get her attention. It worked.

We inadvertently train children every second of every day. This kid tried everything that had ever worked before to get her attention. At some point or another, his obnoxious repetition had worked, his pleading touches, and finally, his crying in “pain.” She had trained him. Not in the way she had intended, but she had taught him what he had to do to get her attention.

Every moment of every day, people train each other, especially children and parents. As kids, we want things all the time. And smart kids take subconscious note of what they have to do to get what they want. Even if it’s something as simple as attention. We all want our parent’s attention. In desperation, we’ll even settle for negative attention. At least we’re being heard.

So today, remember to reward good behavior with attention. And remember that every moment of every day we are learning about each other.

Wife Training – Eh, no…

When I was a kid, I remember my dad saying, “We’re training you to be a good wife.”

I thought of that today, and I don’t agree with the ideology behind it. If you raise children to be good adults, they will be a good wife or husband. No special training needed. 

Venting moment: Don’t train your daughters to be “good wives.” Good wives come in all shapes and sizes, to fit husbands, who also come in all shapes and sizes. Try to show your children (by example) how to follow God and be a caring spouse, pray for them, teach them what they need to know, and let them go.

Native Americans and Racism

I’m part native American, part a bunch of other stuff. I wasn’t raised on a reservation. Neither would I ever want to have been. I don’t want to be supported by someone else. That’s not a gift. Society has advanced, there’s no reason a group of people should be given incentives to live like they lived 1,000 years ago.

Anyway, I heard a quote from a native American leader awhile ago that got me thinking. It was by a guy a couple hundred years ago, and talked nasty about how American Indians wouldn’t be around in the next century. The guy who quoted it was making a point about Native American culture disappearing.

But here’s my objection to that. Native Americans haven’t disappeared. They’ve permeated the culture. A big percentage of people we call “American” today can claim some sort of Native American heritage. Yes, the culture isn’t like it was 1,000 years ago, but since when did humanity try NOT to advance?

We’re all people, plain and simple. And sometimes, with white people guilt, the government tries to give back what some of our ancestors took from Native Americans, or even black people. But that’s all in the past. And pampering a people group, giving them everything free, is not necessarily a gift.

The fact that Europeans killed Native Americans is a sad historical fact. But Indians killed white people, too. Thankfully, a lot of our ancestors got over that. My great-great-great-great-grandfather (or something like that) was a Frenchman who married an American Indian lady. They encountered racism. But that ancestry stayed, and strains of her blood have mingled with all the other races that make up me.

So the people who said American Indians would disappear were wrong. They haven’t. Instead, we find them everywhere in our culture. Not necessarily on the reservations. In the dark hair of your mother, the heavy eyes of your best friend, the dreams of your daughter who wants to befriend wild horses.

America is a mixing pot of races. And mixing requires everyone to give up aspects of their previous identity, and contribute others to the collage. This isn’t a bad thing. God made all of us. He didn’t tell us to stay in our various cultures. He told us to forgive. And racism will never leave if we just keep bringing up old hurts and not forgiving.

Good_8

Editor’s Tip: How NOT to Choke Your Own Sentences

Authors make some pretty terrible mistakes over and over again. I would know, I’m an author. But I’m also an editor for a small publishing company. Here’s one common writing mistake that can mean the death of a novel.  

“Let’s jumble this sentence, add as many words, commas, etc, but not in the right places, and make this sentence as long as possible because, well, I don’t really know why, but I forgot I was still on the same sentence.”

Watch your words. A few EXQUISITE words are a whole lot better than a bucketload of kinda-okay words. One of the marks of a good writer is that he/she knows how to use words powerfully enough to use only a few and communicate a LOT. Uncertain and amateur writers get self-conscious about their choices of words, and say basically the same thing more than once.

Examples always help.

“I truly believe and think that there will always be a place and loving arms for AKC registered poodles in any home or residence in the world, because poodles, like many cats or dogs, are cute, adorable, kind, affectionate, and cuddly.”

Here’s how I would edit this sentence:

I truly believe and think that there (You never need to say “I believe/think.” This whole article is what you think. It’s understood)There will always be a place and loving arms for AKC registered (who cares?) poodles in any home or residence (this is basically a repeat, cluttering up the sentence and gunning down it’s power) in the world, because poodles, like many cats or dogs, (yes, it’s true, but everyone knows that, no need to say it) are cute, adorable, kind, affectionate, (watch out for comma-ridden descriptions, they tend to repeat themselves and get boring really fast) and cuddly.”

“There will always be a place for poodles in any home, because poodles are cute and cuddly.”

If you’re yawning at the end of your own sentence, something’s wrong. It’s tough, but if you want to get better, watch your word count and cut, cut, cut, ruthlessly. At the beginning, I was scared of cutting because I wanted to fill a book. But a filled book is worthless if it’s half full of junk words. Short is better than long.

Three Myths About Marriage

So before my husband and I were married, we went through two rounds of marriage counseling (not by choice or because we had doubts, FYI), and, of course, people give you all sorts of advice when you’re getting ready to get married. We’re cruising into our third year of marriage now, and here are 3 things I’ve found to be false (and the truth in them). 

Myth #1. Everything changes after you get married. When people would tell me this, I had visions of Matt and I doing an about-face and becoming just like our parents. 

I didn’t want that. 

Fortunately, and logically, this usually isn’t true. You are who you are, and marriage doesn’t change your core personality or values. Don’t expect it to, and don’t be afraid to get married because of it. 

Now, here’s the truth in that. Instead of the usual focusing on each other so much like you do when you’re dating/engaged, you get down to the grind of life together. And if you let it, you can loose sight of each other and start to take the other for granted. You’re spouse becomes a fact of life, and the light they provide becomes normal. 

Myth #2. Your relationship becomes less romantic after your vows. If anything, for us, our relationship got more romantic! We had our first kiss at our wedding, and had never gone beyond hugging and holding hands. I don’t know if that was a contributing factor, but Matt is much more physically affectionate and romantic than he ever was when we were dating. My only regret is that we don’t write each other notes as much as we used to, but we do on special occasions. 

Myth #3. A successful marriage requires a good housewife and a male breadwinner. Ha! I’m a terrible housekeeper and although I do like to cook, I make a mess I don’t clean up when I do! 

I know, I shouldn’t be so messy. But hey, it works. Matt cleans up, generally makes house decorating decisions, and can be an amazing cook when the need arises. We both freelance from home, and the division of labor is pretty awesome. When he has an urgent/big project, I pamper him and do as much food and cleaning as I can to help lighten his load. And when I have a big/urgent project, he does the same for me. I don’t see that changing even when we have kids, I want to keep working and so does he. 

A Final Note. Marriage is a union between two unique individuals. Consequently, take marriage advice with a grain of salt and a pound of grace. You’re marriage will be different from any other marriage you know, because you and your new spouse are unique. Everybody likes to give marriage advice, but only really take seriously people who know you both and are wise. 

Feedback for “The Artist”

So one of my old friends recently bought a book (Yaayyyy!!) and emailed me the other day with this:

“We have been really enjoying reading it at bedtime and any other time momma’s hands are dry!  I love the art and the note to your readers at the end especially,  it made us feel like you, as the author, actually cared and you weren’t just some distant random person out to make a buck! God bless you on your adventures.”

Thanks so much, Gwyn!!