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Family and Friends is my everyday journal. Captain's Log is where I pontificate on religion and politics.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas to all my family and friends.

Went to Tucson to bring my eldest grandson to be with us. It's been two years since he was last here! He much taller and is getting along with the other two grandchildren. If we can only get his mother to let us have him over the summer like she's supposed too....
Last time we drove to Tucson was twelve years ago and I remember from Wilcox on there were a lot of saguaro cactus all over the vast expanses on both sides of the highway. This trip I didn't see one, not even in the Saguaro National Park. It wasn't until inside the Tucson that they were present usually in front of a business. What happened to all of them?
It's been fun having three rambunctious kids running and making lots of noise in the house, but after awhile it's nice when my son loads them up in the van to visit other people and we get a little peace and quiet.
Wife's off for two weeks while I'm here at the office and will return next week, things have flipped a little since I retired.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

We already knew this.

The torture report came out and all the tut-tutting that is going on is too little too late. We already knew the CIA was torturing people at black sights and third party surrogates. We had pictures from Abu Ghraib proving it was going on. Bush and Cheney boasted about it while in office and after they left office. The scope might be bigger than expected, but the scope doesn't matter. Torturing anyone is illegal under the constitution for any reason: it's called cruel and unusual punishment.

Here is a post from my Captain's Log blog in January 2011

My Two Cents

Quote from No Comment blog today. Sorry Scot Horton is no longer blogging.

Torture is the habit of tyranny, not of free republics, and it cannot simply be switched on and off. It inculcates a conception of state power and human worth that directly conflicts with our founding principle of an inalienable dignity to the human person, even the most culpable. As we know from Abu Ghraib, once it is unleashed, even as a supposedly well- quarantined tactic practiced by putative professionals, torture spreads like cancer…. This is the lesson of history for all governments that turn to torture: an isolated practice expands to become the emblem of state power and the reality of the citizens’ subjection.

Because It Is Wrong—Torture, Privacy and Presidential Power in the Age of Terror

I'm no expert, and believe me I don't wish to be, on the subject of torture. Since the day W announced the opening of Guantanamo and the suspension of Habeas Corpus I knew torture would be in the mix. When the first pictures of torture surfaced from the normally lap dog press the only surprise was that it came to light so soon. Here's what I've learned since then:

A. Why torture is ineffective:
  • Torture does not get the information you need. The ticking time bomb scenario makes for good fiction, not reality. Military leaders and the different JAG's have all pointed this out repeatedly.
  • Standard military procedure is for captured soldiers to hold out under torture for 24 hours. At that point all the info they have will be useless. Sun Tzu mentions the Doomed Spy. Someone given information they think is correct so when captured and they reveal the information under torture makes the enemy believe the false information as true. We call this today Misinformation.
  • Eventually everyone under torture will say or do anything in order to make it stop. How many people have confessed to crimes and spend years or their lives in prison for a crime they didn't commit? Chicago is a prime example of a city's police department that trampled justice for decades until their practices came to light.
  • It dehumanizes the torturer as much at the one tortured. It dehumanizes the society that allows it. See quote above.
  • To implement torture you have to violate the following in our constitution: 1. Habeas Corpus - indefinite confinement without charge 2 Bill of Attainder - punishment without due process of law (5th and 14th amendments) 3 cruel and unusual punishment 6th amendment.
B. Torture's effectiveness:
  • I only came upon one mention of how torture can be done right, and it came from a cartel hitman interviewed in Harper's magazine. Naturally he was in the country's police force and kidnapped people to hold for ransom. He recounted that he would get all the information about the person he could find and when he started questioning the guy would know at first when he was lying and then would apply torture. Only after he conditioned the prisoner to not lie would he ask questions needed forthe financial information and ransom amount. This is kind of hard to do in a battlefield situation or by randomly grabbing people off the street in Iraq or Afghanistan. Stimulus/response only works with foreknowledge.
  • Conformity or obedience. In prisons like Guantanamo those prisoners who have been tortured are the least likely to cause problems, they've been tamed, so to speak.
  • They are however a tiger by the tail. Yes they will not cause problem while under guard, but let them loose and send them home and they want revenge. Many of those who were tortured and then released join terrorist groups wanting payback, can anyone blame them? This is unfortunately why Obama is finding it so hard to close these prisons down.

Monday, December 01, 2014

My books on Amazon

Individual novels are $0.99, the trilogy is $2.99

Fletcher Family Battles available for $0.99
 John Fletcher is a young knight looking to find a wife and begin his life until King Edward I decides to invade France. Fighting alongside the Black Prince at the battle of Crecy and making a name for himself he becomes the patriarch of of the Fletcher family of Mill Town Abbey.

John Fletcher is child of a third son and decides he doesn't like studying to be a priest. Entering the army of Henry VIII he's sent to Spain in what becomes known as Wolsey's War coming home in disgrace. Joining the artillery when Scotland threatens to invade he redeems himself at the battle of Flodden.

Milton Fletcher is the second son of John Fletcher master of Mill Town Abbey. Thomas Wolsey the King's Almoner favors him and he starts to rise in the bureaucracy being created by the most formidable man in England.

Gregor Fletcher is head of Clan Fletcher in Aberdeen. Called by King James IV to join in the invasion of England his whole clan is on the line should they fail.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Death With Dignity

Came across this post today on the Brittany Murphy assisted suicide. Reading the comments reinforced Benjamin Corey's arguments on the true horror of the woman's sadly short life, Christian condemnation for her choice.  Some of the commenters still don't understand the woman didn't want to die, but she was faced with the choice of ending he life peacefully or suffering a truly horrible death from her disease. Someone with compassion, someone who is supposed to be known to the world by their LOVE, would weep with her family and grieve with her family, not say or print what they think God will do to her.
Have Christians forgotten the words of Jesus: Matthew 7:1 Do not judge lest you be judged. 2 For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your measure it will be measured to you. Or have they forgotten Paul's words: Romans 8:1 There is therefore no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. Finally the good news in a nutshell: John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave  his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him.
The message of Jesus and what he lived and died for was F-O-R-G-I-V-E-N-E-S-S. From what fundamentalist Christians are saying Jesus is only about judgement and condemnation which is totally opposite for what He gave his life and rose from the grave to accomplish.
 I have a friend whose mother was suffering from a painful terminal illness, but she hid her pain and without the family knowing of her illness committed suicide. They were members in a fundamentalist church that I belonged for a time. At the funeral I will never forget this pastor's words: "When she met Jesus I'm sure she said,'I did wrong.' and Jesus said, 'Yes you did, but you're forgiven.'"
My question here is: if we can have love and compassion for fellow Christians why can't we do the same for non-believers? Brittany Murphy will not be judged by God on how she died, but how she lived and what she believed while alive, and no one else has a say or knows God's decision.
Two of my loved ones died of cancer and for understandable reasons one chose to let nature take its course and the other fought to the bitter end. My role was not to judge either one of them, but to understand and be there with help, love, compassion, to grieve with my family during their demise and after their passing.
My father was in his eighties, suffering from type 2 diabetes, and Alzheimer's. When he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer the doctor tried hard to give him treatment, but it would be chemo-therapy which would make him sick and weak to prolong his life at most six months. His choice six weeks of hospice care where the pain would be managed or six months of dizziness, vomiting and loose stools. Would anyone in their right mind choose to have the treatment?
My sister was in her early forties with a four year old daughter when she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. With the best of care and up-to-date treatment she survived for five years. My sister had a good reason to live as long as possible no matter the pain: she wanted to spend all the time she had with her husband and daughter.
Would the judgmental Christians condemn my father for choosing to die without a fight and praise my sister for fighting? Who cares? It's none of their damn business!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

To spank or not to spank

That is the question.
Does it work?
Is it in varying degrees of damage or abstinence only?
Is discipline to be ignored and children run wild or do we beat obedience and drive out individuality?
Is it done because the Bible says so?
Or out of:
Should society step between parent and child or mind its own business?
Is spanking all that should be banned and what about verbally crushing a soul striving for identity?
How were you raised?
How did you discipline your children?
How do you want your children to discipline your grandchildren?
What would you do if you saw a child being spanked in public?
Are our prisons overflowing because parents stopped spanking or because they were spanked?
Have you ever wanted to tell a parent whose child is screaming in public to "Give them something to cry about?"
Dear fellow bloggers, what are your thoughts and answers?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Struggles of faith

I came across this link on the facebook page of a good friend from college. It talks about how what are now being called Post Evangelicals. Chaplain Mike says the culture of Evangelicalism has turned us off, not the theology.
For many post-evangelicals like me, it is the culture that became a primary problem. When I say I am in the wilderness, I certainly don’t mean I’ve lost my faith. I have lost my “world,” my “culture.” I don’t fit any more. Some of us may agree with one tradition more than another when it comes to beliefs; we may even feel perfectly comfortable with a simple, basic set of evangelical doctrines as the content of our “faith.” But its forms can no longer sustain us.

This brought to mind belonging to De Molays the teenage axillary of the Masons. My grandfather and father were masons and brother and I were encouraged to join. Once a month we had a meeting, it had an opening ritual where most of the older members had memorized parts, but the business meeting was usually about fundraisers, dances and other social gatherings. I liked the dances. They were held in a special lodge had a band or two and lots of Job's Daughters from all over the city for partners.
On the surface everything had a religious basis, but the culture of the group I was in was far from spiritual. Some of our parties revolved around playing penny ante poker at other gathering most of the guys were smoking and drinking (under age) which their parents winked at. I can't complain too much about the language since Dad was a marine and taught me all the words growing up.
A couple of years of this and I had enough. I wasn't into phony friends.

For the past thirty years we've bounced from one church to another. We belonged to one church where we were very happy and in one Sunday school lesson it turned rabid by outsiders brought in to make sure the church toed the new evangelical doctrine of "Sanctity of Human Life." Those who thought differently were shunned. It is the culture, but in many cases it's an enforced conformity and mind control. And I'm not going to go down the path of John Calvin's tyranny set up in Geneva, or Oliver Cromwell's England, or Puritanical New England.
At least here the worst rabid conformists can do is exclude you from fellowship, look what ISIS is doing in Syria and Iraq. Believe me if they could get enough control of our government they would do the same things here, and I'm not exaggerating Rushdoonie, before he died and the Dominionists that are his followers are openly saying what they will do or ought to be done to homosexuals, atheists, and Muslims.

Monday, September 01, 2014

Wage theft

There's been a number of articles and stories in the news about wage theft like this one here. Which got me to thinking is this something new or has it been SOP for business and people are finally getting wise? Which made me go down memory lane.
  • My first job was at a Taco Bell June of 1969. I worked for a month on the night shift. We closed at 11:00pm and were given 30 minutes to clean up and clock out. I was 16 and made a whopping $.75 an hour. The one perk was that all food and drink was free. A teenage boy allowed to eat all the tacos, burritos and bell beefers (their hamburger, not on the menu now) he wants even if everything on the menu at that time was 25 cents; it more than made up the difference for the then minimum wage of $1.60/hour. The first night manager knew how to get everything cleaned and put away in that time. Mom had to take me to work and come bak to take me home, but she thought it was good for me to get work experience. Gil left after my first week and Mary was his replacement as night manager. She didn't have a clue and most nights we didn't get out until one in the morning, but we had to clock out at 11:30. One night we didn't get done till 0300. Mom to this day says while she was sitting out there waiting for me that she would rather have paid me to not work there. Working an hour and a half to four hours without getting paid I chalked up to experience and fortunately for some bizarre reason the regular manger fired me after working there three weeks. Mom breathed a sigh of relief. 
  • Same summer in July and August I worked at an A&W. The only thing free to employees was root beer. After a week I started drinking water. It was a much better place to work than Taco Bell and I got a whopping $1.15/hour. I answered the intercom taking orders and the fountain filling drink orders, making milk shakes, frosties and floats. It was close enough to home to walk back and forth and Mom didn't have to wait outside for me. Where does wage theft come in? Taking orders I also added up the bill, if I overcharged I got a tongue lashing from Mr. Hamilton (he's long dead now and the business has gone through a dozen incarnations since it was an A&W.) as that has a tendency to drive customers away. If I was under, the difference was taken out of my paycheck. Every paycheck anywhere from fifty cents to a buck and a half was deducted. Basically every week I had one hour of my wages deducted. I didn't like it at the time and I have never worked in food since.
  • Senior year in high school I worked at a Skaggs drug store for the Christmas rush and the summer before heading off to college. I was paid minimum wage and treated well and never had anything deducted from my wages or required to work without pay even when I had a two wheeler of distilled water tip over and nine gallons of water spilled on the floor. I worked as a security guard senior year of college. While working for Pinkerton's and Burns everything was above board.
  • While going through a divorce I was a door to door salesman for month of July in 1976, and it nearly ruined me. It was straight commission, the first week was memorizing the script so gas to and from was not paid or my time. All calls to the customers was in my car and with my gas. When I started going out on calls the commission on a $800 set of fire alarms was $150.00. And in the next three weeks I sold four sets so I should have made $600.00, guess again. My take for the whole four weeks as I drove all over Albuquerque sometimes putting on fifty miles an evening in my car and on my dime was $150.00. I got paid for only one set. If the customer's credit wasn't good enough the set was sold to a high risk credit company and the salesman didn't get the commission. A month of this and I ran up a tab on my lone credit card of $400.00. When I finally came to my senses and school started I worked as a substitute teacher and in the evenings as a security guard again. I took me six months to pay off that credit card.
  • If you think about how teachers are paid, wage theft is the norm. Teachers are paid for 180 days of classroom instruction and 2 days of in-service meetings and registration. The salary is spread out over twelve months, but all those holidays and vacation days like fall break, winter break, spring break and summer break are not paid. Each paid day is for 6 1/2 hours of instruction. Before school meetings and after school meetings, parent/teacher conferences are not paid. The vast majority of teachers put eight to ten hours a day and possibly weekend hours to plan, grade and prepare out of the goodness of their hearts. The IRS recognizes that teachers also dip into their own pockets for supplies and allow a $500.00 deduction on income tax. Believe me the IRS is on the low side of what teachers spend. If all states paid their public school teachers for the hours they really work and provided the supplies required it would triple their operational education budget. The taxpayers get a big break from wage theft when it comes to teachers. Don't get me started about how little public school coaches make per hour expended.
  • Lastly my short experience with a cheapskate employer. Day care was cutting into our budget and I thought a part time job was needed. I went back to being a security guard in the evenings and on weekends (most teachers have a second job, see why above), but Burns and Pinkertons weren't hiring. I got a job with a local security firm working 4 hours a day every day of the week, but the kicker here was 5% of each paycheck was deducted as rent of the uniforms. Burns and Pinkertons simply provided them and if you left their employ you returned them. 5% on 28 hours of work per week and $4.50 and hour may not seem like much, but it lowered the hourly salary to $4.27/hour. How cheap do you have to be to charge an employee 23 cents an hour to use a uniform that has to be worn for the job?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

What a week I had yesterday

Got to the office yesterday to find water streaming down from the vent above the commode and water all over the floor. There is an upside to working at a plumbing company, when one of the plumbers showed up to load his van I drafted him to fix the problem. He found the six gallon hot water heater sprung a leak and turned off the water, took it out and reconnected the water line so we have water, just not hot water. Since we don't cook, shower or wash clothes not a real problem. Why would they put a hot water heater in the attic? I just love mopping up a floor first thing in the morning. Luckily my office and lawyer's office were not damaged. I just had to rearrange everything so he could have access and can't put anything back until he installs the new one, which could be six months from now the way things work around here.
Took some papers to the courthouse, but the parking lot next to it is being used by a filming crew. Most likely Better Call Saul the spin off from Breaking Bad which is set for a February start on AMC. I found a parking space three blocks away, but the south side of Lomas's sidewalk is being rebuilt so I had to walk across the street then down to the courthouse and cross it again. When I made it through security and got to the clerk to drop off and pick up papers I took down a few days earlier I knew the client's name, but not the other party's name and since he's the defendant not the plaintiff I had to walk back to my car call the office to get the name I needed and walk back. It really pisses me off that human being can't take cell phones into the courthouse, but lawyers can. At least I got some exercise, about as good as four par 5's on the golf course just with a lot of carbon monoxide fumes thrown in.
Then I had to pick up a package from another law firm. I stopped and picked up a some hotdogs at a Circle K and back in the office while eating them got mustard all over my shirt. That really makes a good impression on the clients as I greet them at the door.
Did not get one word written on the short story I'm working on to submit to a contest. It's tough trying to get a complete story done in only 2,000 words.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Jerusalem in 3D

Went to a viewing at the Natural History I-Max yesterday of the National Geographic 3D movie on Jerusalem. It was fantastic. To view clips and pictures of the movie click here. It's the best look at the three religious cultures in a really small space. I loved the way in the 3D if felt like you were actually walking through a bazaar or a crowded street. The three young girls you followed as they explained their beliefs and family life helped put a human face on what's happening there.  David Fergusson, one of the producers of the film was present for a Q&A afterwards and was very impressive explaining some of the many problems he faced getting this project done. If it shows up in your area by all means go see it in the 3D. Eventually this film will be done in regular mode for schools and television. I've never been a big fan of 3D, but this one changed my mind.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Noah, a review

I think this could be titled Noah, The Man Without a Clue.
As a blockbuster movie I think this ranks about even with John Carter. I happen to like both of them. Okay I admit it, I liked Noah as entertainment, as having first class CG (especially when they showed the planet covered in hurricanes), a decent story and morality play. That said here's my take, drum roll if you will...
  • The Watchers are irritating. Come on Transformers in a biblical movie? it's about as bad as the mechanical owl in Clash of the Titans. Deus Ex Machina has to have a purpose and be crucial to the story. These guys are misplaced in time add nothing to the story that couldn't be explained through natural means and are just plain creepy. Hint to script writer and director: fallen angles stay fallen and are called demons. Genesis 6:4 doesn't call the Nephalim fallen angles, they are referred to as son's of God that interbred with women. The Watchers, if the Nephalim is what they represent, would be giants humans not anthropomorphized rocks.
  • Noah never figures anything out on his own. He has a vision, but has to travel to Methuselah for interpretation, and is given a magical seed that when planted grows a whole forest in a matter of seconds. His "failure" (not explaining because it would be a spoiler) gives a good reason for him to drink himself to the point of lying naked on the sand and hints at the Curse of Ham, but it takes his adopted daughter to explain to him why he didn't fail.
  • The constant flashbacks to the serpent and the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil then the silhouette of Cain slaying Able. Once was enough, we got it.
  • The Ark. It ranks up there with the wooden horse in Troy as a realistic construction of that time period. They both broke the mold of all the drawings and pictures of them that the audience is prepared for. It's covered in tar to keep it water tight, nice realistic touch.
  • All the animals hibernating. It answers much speculation over the centuries and I'm sure solved a lot of problems in the story.
  • Jennifer Connelly as Naameh, she should get a role as Russel Crowe's wife more often. She deserves another Oscar.
  • Anthony Hopkins as Methuselah, not much of a stretch from his previous role as Odin, but this time he didn't have to wear an eye patch. He lends credence to any move he's in, I'm biased here.
  • Russel Crowe. I don't think any other actor today could play this role convincingly. He's the master at myopic stoicism.
  • No booming voice of God. They use the creator when speaking of the divine being which may piss off some people, but still gets the point across.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Way We Were, flop or a hit?

One of my wife's and my favorite movies. Recently we watched it again, and afterwards we watched the bonus dvd with an interview on the making of the movie.

Sydney Pollack said something that hit me as a writer. He said they had a viewing of the movie on Friday night and it was a flop. The people hated it. He cut two scenes and on Saturday night it was a hit. They showed the first scene cut and I agreed with it because it didn't advance the story. The second scene he cut was brutal, but necessary to make the movie a hit.
If your familiar with the movie ( and I don't have the patience to write a summary) Hubble and Katie get divorced because Hubble sleeps with his past girlfriend (played by Lois Childs)
That's not the original reason for the divorce. The scene that is cut has Katie being named a communist to the House Un-American activities committee by a former boyfriend played by James Woods. Hubble is the writer of a novel being turned into a movie and he would be blacklisted in Hollywood for being married to a communist. Katie divorces him not because he was unfaithful, but to save his career. It was an act of love, not spite.
Pollack said the audience wasn't ready for that kind of ending. It was a bucket of cold water at the end of romantic movie. Forty years later he's been proven right. It's still a big movie and made lots of money.
As a writer he cut the guts out of what the author was trying to get the audience to feel. This was the theme, the message, what he wrote the whole story for in the first place. He intended that bucket of cold water to wake up a complacent public to how witch hunts like congress did back in the 1940's and the senate of the 1950's destroyed people's lives.
After this movie other movies and TV shows were made on the Hollywood blacklist, but none of them had the impact that this movie would have made, but marketing killed.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Print book in hand

I have my first novel back in print. Five copies on hand and more to come. It is still available at amazon.com as an e-book for only .99. Newly revised and updated.
The original version is still available as used book for varying prices.

This is my other book now in print and at amazon.com as an e-book for .99. The first of a trilogy about the impending explosion of Yellowstone.
This tells the tale of the Drake/Eastman dynasty from the 1920's to the 70's
This one's not in print yet, but it is available at amazon.com as an e-book for .99. This is the continuing saga of the Drake/Eastman dynasty getting things ready for when it hits the fan.
Their motto: When it hits the fan you'd better have a plan.

Still working on Fan Plan Countdown it will be out shortly. The third and fourth generation of Drake/Eastman/O'Neals await the day when it hits the fan and the scientific secret police are being prepared to preserve civilization against superstition in the aftermath of the fan.

I'm going to revise Vander's Magic Carpet, Human Sacrifices and a compile a few of my short stories into an anthology. Now I have a printer and I can publish books that sell around ten dollars it will be worth my while to start doing book signings again.

My problem is that while I'm doing all this revising and getting books ready to print it leaves little time to write new stuff and I have got to get busy on the Stephanus, the sequel to Optimus.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Glad things are getting back to normal

Wow the winter Olympics were long. It seemed to me that everything snowboarders were doing also had skiers doing. Thank goodness we didn't have to watch cross country snowboarding. Wife had to watch both the afternoon sessions and evening even late night. Even she agreed to fast forward through an hour and a half of cross country skiing after the first couple of days.
I was a distance runner and cross country has to be the most boring sport in the world if you're not participating in it. It's best for the spectator to watch everyone leave and when they come back, the in between is tedious. The afternoons seemed to be nothing but cross country. There were different lengths of cross country, male and female, then the different lengths of biathlon, male and female, then team etc. How many times can you watch guys crawling crablike up a hill?
Figure skating, downhill, bobsled, luge, speed skating long and short track were much more exciting. Not so big on the half-pipe stuff.
I don't even want to mention the special features on the lives of the athletes. For everyone who made it, there are thousands with just as sad a story who worked just as hard and didn't.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Editing editing editing

Now that I've found a printer to publish my books in ink and paper I have so many of my e-books to edit before sending them off. I finished Optimus Praetorian Guard and e-mailed it to the printer Friday. Fan Plan Preparation is ready and I'm nearly done with Fan Plan Countdown.
Each book costs $50.00 for an ISBN #, plus ten books for around 90 to 100 bucks; so I have to wait until I have that clear in my business account.
Then I'll need to edit Human Sacrifices and Vander's Magic Carpet and get them printed.
With writing the juices are flowing, you get caught up in the story, the characters, you never know which way the stories going to go until the end.
Editing is the most important part, but it's so time consuming and hard to know when you're done and ready to let it fly. E-books easier because if you discover major flaws or typos and grammar problems you re-edit and resubmit. You can't do that with ink and paper so there needs to be much better editing.
The problem with needing to edit this many books, where's the time for the fun stuff, like writing.

Friday, February 14, 2014

The R word

RAPE, there I've said it. This is a hard topic for a man to write or discuss, but it affects everyone.
I'm not an expert psychologist, but recently I've been reading a feminist's blog that I mentioned previously. She has very specific views on the subject and reading the comments so do most of her readers. What they define as rape, is not what most men would consider it to be. I've thought about it for a day or two and thought to add my two cents.
Being male, though I might speak for all of my gender it is my perspective. That caveat added here goes:
The legal concept of rape is when a man physically makes a woman have sex against her will. It is a crime, because it is physically forced, even if there are no signs of harm. A gun, knife or sheer size of the attacker may cause the woman not to struggle, deadly force is considered physical harm.

The women felt that a boyfriend, significant other or spouse gets angry at the woman's "no" frightening her with verbal abuse, sexual rights based on religious beliefs, threatens to leave, pouts for an hour or more, refuses to take out the trash, etc. Men can be rather temperamental when they're in the mood and the woman isn't.
Should the woman though not wanting sex then says, "Yes" giving in to this emotional blackmail in a legal sense this is not rape. Consent was given, this type of duress isn't a factor in a court of law.

Men like the legal concept of rape, and the women say, "Bullshit."

As a man the legal concept is what is thought of should a woman use the word against him. Stop yelling women and let me finish the thought. Just as a woman's reputation can be ruined by a man writing about her on the men's room wall, or derogatory words concerning her sexual experience, if a woman files a legal charge of rape against a man, even if the charges are dropped or he is found not guilty this is a black mark that sticks for life. The number of men released from prison the last ten years because DNA testing exonerated them makes this a valid point.

I know that one in four or five women in their lifetimes will be raped. I know that two thirds or more of all rapes go unreported. I know that the majority of rapes are done by someone the woman knows: family members, friends of the family, boyfriend. Those are only statistics.

I also know first hand what happens to young girls who've been sexually abused. Twenty seven years teaching middle school and high school and you see much more than you ever wanted making your  heart break. When a young girl goes from smiles and being friendly with other students, even giving the teacher a little attitude, then over a weekend she starts dressing like it's winter in 80 degree heat. She comes in alone and leaves alone without saying a word to other students keeping her head down refusing eye contact and fights to hold back tears. You know this young woman, has been scarred for life.
By law observing such signs teachers are required to report this to the councilors, and on a few occasions I did, but usually women teachers were there before me seeing subtle changes in her long before I could tell.

I don't know what the answer is to an age old human problem, but making rape a one size fits all word by women for every time they said yes when they really didn't want to, or felt trapped in a relationship financially or emotionally only causes more confusion on a very serious matter.

I know, I know, I'm a man and just don't get it.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

New blogger friend


Over the years quite of few of my blogger friends have faded away leaving me with precious few kindred spirits to read and post comments. Recently I came across a nice young lady who is living out loud so to speak on her blog and she has been a pleasure to read. Her blog is Defeating Dragons, read a few of her posts, leave a comment or two, she does have a strong following and add her to your reading list.Defeating Dragons

Friday, January 03, 2014

A Colonel's Suggestion.

Had a tooth pulled yesterday. It started hurting Tuesday night and I thought sinus pressure was responsible. Wednesday (New Year's Day) face was swollen making me look like a chipmunk on one side of my face. Went to the dentist and had to call Mom and Melissa to take me home. Damn getting old sucks!
When I was a junior in high school I had a tooth removed in the morning and missed my ROTC class. At lunch I went to the building and of course the Colonel wanted to know why I wasn't in class. When I told him he suggested I  go home. Naturally I went to my afternoon classes then track practice where I ran eight miles. I went back to the ROTC building where the Colonel then read me the riot act for not doing as he suggested. When I went home and told Dad how mad the guy got he said, "Full bird colonels don't give orders, they make suggestions and expect them to be obeyed." Wish I had the stamina now that I did then.