The Original Mother’s Day Proclamation

Before it was a greeting-card-holiday, Mother’s Day was a call for peace “…originally started after the Civil Was, as a protest to the carnage of that war, by women who had lost their sons.” This is the kind of day I want to honor.


Mother’s Day Proclamation: Julia Ward Howe, Boston, 1870

Arise, then, women of this day! Arise all women who have hearts, whether our baptism be that of water or of fears!

Say firmly: “We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies. Our husbands shall not come to us, reeking with carnage, for caresses and applause. Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.

We women of one country will be too tender of those of another country to allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs. From the bosom of the devastated earth a voice goes up with our own. It says “Disarm, Disarm! The sword of murder is not the balance of justice.”

Blood does not wipe our dishonor nor violence indicate possession. As men have often forsaken the plow and the anvil at the summons of war, let women now leave all that may be left of home for a great and earnest day of counsel. Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.

Let them then solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means whereby the great human family can live in peace, each bearing after their own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar, but of God.

In the name of womanhood and of humanity, I earnestly ask that a general congress of women without limit of nationality may be appointed and held at some place deemed most convenient and at the earliest period consistent with its objects, to promote the alliance of the different nationalities, the amicable settlement of international questions, the great and general interests of peace.

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Restore Justice to Law

I have to constantly remind myself that what is LEGAL and what is JUST are only coincidentally related.

The law can and should change as a society evolves. But in our country today, too many legal adjustments have to do with creating advantage over others. Add the example that “tax cuts” become “more taxes” when they expire, the bigger picture is that justice, in the language of law and in the language of society, are on the chopping block. Those powerful enough (wealthy enough) now manipulate words in order to gain benefit and control.

“If you see something, say something.” I see greedy people with dangerous power who cannot and will never see me. I see me, I see you, I see all Americans joining together to restore justice to law.

What do you see? 

Photo courtesy

Photo courtesy

SCOTUS on notice

If advertising and marketing didn’t make a difference in sales, American business wouldn’t spend hundreds of billions of dollars on it every year.

By making money “speech”, by extending business (even global business) personhood to virtual citizenship and right to free speech, then going one further and giving these “special” business/persons/citizens unlimited money/speech rights (when “ordinary” citizens are limited in their money/speech rights), the Supreme Court has shown its colors.

Either the SCOTUS does not know the power of advertising and marketing in determining an outcome, or it has intentionally decided to unleash that power in the political arena in way that insures the scales tip to business.

Ignorant or biased? It does not matter to me.

POSTCARD: Taxes, Greed and Patriots

Let me start by saying that I believe paying taxes is patriotic and that I am happy to pay my fair share.

I paid more in taxes than almost half the households in America earned last year. That makes me angry, not because I paid too much, but because American labor is undervalued, because American jobs are scarce, and because this has come about by design.

Add to my anger equation the recent refusal of the lobby-controlled Congress to remove designer tax breaks and subsidies for big oil, the snarky defense of the top-tier that their money is special so should not be taxed like our not-special money, the blatant spin campaign to make us feel dirty if we question the greed at the top, and this red blooded American tax payer screams ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

Most of that big corporate money does not consider itself American money, it sees itself as global money. The creepy people who lobby for its celebrity status don’t care what their success costs my family, friends or neighbors, let alone America herself.

When will we admit corporatists are not “Americans”, let alone patriots, and stop treating them like royalty?



POSTCARD: Moms, Gas Prices, and Tax Loopholes

Graphic by Paul Smalley

Norquist Pledge signer Michele Bachmann, criticized the president today for gasoline prices, saying that because of him women would pay an additional $2000 this year at the pump, yet, she seems fine with oil companies having paid no taxes and even receiving corporate welfare. Last I checked, a good private school cost more than $2000 per year, and if the oil companies actually paid their taxes, my public school would be in fine shape.

Thanks for your concern, “working mom”.

POSTCARD: Pink Slime and Jobs

I heard the pleading from Iowa governor Branstad that a couple of hundred jobs have been lost in his state because the public won’t tolerate pink slime in their beef. Add to this the recent USDA hinting concern, after decades of credible evidence, that routine use of antibiotics in livestock (made necessary by inhumane treatment that guarantees illness) causes harm to the down stream consumers, and the J-word it out again.

On Up With Chris Hayes this morning, Mark Bittman pointed to the obvious: when employment declines in an industry in favor, it’s a jobs issue, despite the fact that our ever-changing world will always make jobs go away. My mind raced to buggy whips.

Yet, when the Norquist Pledgers demand that the top tax-tier rates remain “cut”, and preserve designer loop holes for some corporations that keep them from paying taxes all together, the resulting  hundreds of thousands of job losses for public servants (conveniently dubbed “government”) like special ed teachers, librarians, school janitors, animal control, public health nurses, fire investigators, crime detectives, and those guys that fill in pot holes to name a few, is NOT a jobs issue, it  is an economic freedom issue.

Who really believes that?

POSTCARD: Let’s Talk About War

When “mega corporate persons” decided there was profit in saying “Happy Holidays” (holy days), some declared there was a war on Christmas. They screamed about “winter break” or lack of a manger on county courthouse lawns (ours has a Christmas tree). The right to private religious practice seems inadequate to them.

There are even religious and political organizations that now challenge the long held stand for the separation of church and state in America,  boasting they will take their case all the way to the Supreme Court. But first they are taking their case to the people’s courts: the pulpit and Fnews.

These are pretty much the same people who say there is no war on women: that the hundreds of laws across this nation and in our Congress, throwing equal access to medical science back over 50 years for over half the population is not an attack; that the fact that some of us will actually die because of these laws does not make this combat; and that imposing their religious beliefs on different-believers is not un-American.

Now, just who has a war on their hands?