Pinky Swear

She wasn’t my first choice as a candidate, nor was she my second.

But I constantly watched and waited for Elizabeth Warren to say or do that thing that would make me go “Yes! She’s my choice!”  Perhaps she did say it and I missed it.

Now I will never know.

The woman I am wanted her to be my candidate. I could more closely identify with her on a personal level than I ever could with Hillary Clinton.  Warren was so personable and vulnerable as a human being in ways Clinton perhaps never had the luxury to be.

I identified with her struggle from poverty to become highly educated, to be a mother trying to also make her personal dreams come true.

Even her evolution from Republican to Democrat is a journey I understand.  I suspect, like me, there came a point when her moral values bumped up against the realities of the way the GOP ideology did not match the actions of the party and its leaders.

I loved Warren’s motto of “I have a plan,” even if I questioned whether or not some were practicable.  There was rarely a time she showed up unprepared to fight for what she believed in.

One area I wish she had spoken more about was her foreign policy/DOD expertise.  I did not know until recently that she sat on the Senate Armed Services Committee since 2016.

After Beto O’Rourke dropped out, I watched and waited for whom I would vote in my upcoming Georgia primary.

My decision got made when Trump decided to assassinate  Iran’s Soleimani and nearly brought us to the brink of an all-out Mid-East war.  I felt Joe Biden was the only candidate who could quickly deal with a foreign crisis because of his time as VP and the years of relationships he has already built here and abroad.

I do hope debate moderators pose more foreign policy and climate change questions in upcoming debates. My opinion is these have been sorely missing from the conversation.

Today someone posted the historic picture of five of six of the women candidates who first began this historic 2020 campaign to be the Democratic nominee. It was a reminder when this started there was not just Elizabeth Warren, but Amy Klobuchar, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand and Tulsi Gabbard – all members of Congress – from which to choose, as well as Marianne Williamson.

As each one dropped out, so did the hope we women had this year that maybe – just maybe – this would be our time.

Yet I feel a peculiar sadness for Warren’s departure.  There was a secret part of me that wanted her to win.

I had hoped to see in my lifetime the highest glass ceiling facing women finally shatter so we were free to fly above it, doing whatever we were best suited for without being crowded out by a mediocre male. In the 2016 race, an exceptional woman lost to a man who doesn’t even rise to the level of mediocre.

And I guess I lost hope.  So perhaps Liz and Amy and Kamala and Kirsten and Tulsi and Marianne never had a chance with me.

Maybe next time…pinky swear?

adult affection beads blur
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From Democrat to GOP and Back Again

My first political argument came at the age of ten with my school friend, Dawn Walters.

As I argued fervently for LBJ, she did the same for Barry Goldwater.  Neither of us knew a thing about the underlying issues that grounded their candidacies.  We just knew who our parents favored and argued accordingly.

Indiana has always been a conventional and conservative state, at least in my recall.  But my Mom loved JFK and Jackie, and his assassination was one of those “seminal” moments that marked my childhood and Johnson had been his VP.  So my political trajectory at ten was consistent.

Bobby Kennedy I loved all by myself.  I was just getting up and dressing while listening to the transistor radio when I learned of his death.  My anguish was deep and real…or as deep and real as one feels at 15 when their heroes are gunned down.

Whatever political self I had died with him that day. As I moved on toward 18 and the 26th Amendment rushed into place right before my birthday, I know I engaged in the privilege of voting the next election year.  I honestly don’t remember voting for Nixon, but I probably did.  It was more the act of being able to vote that was meaningful to me than for whom I was casting the vote, as well as the historical importance of being among the first group under 21 to vote in a Presidential election.

I was also by then in the Navy to earn the G.I. Bill to pay my way through college.  So I probably voted for Nixon as “Commander in Chief.”  So let me take this moment to apologize for helping to enable that whole Watergate thing.

A much better reader of politics and history now than then, I didn’t realize how deeply disturbed and drowning in alcohol Nixon was.  As someone who would later become a California reporter, my admiration for Woodward and Bernstein is off the charts.

My 1976 vote went to Jimmy Carter.  The old Democrat in me rose up.  But it wasn’t a political renaissance for me; just distrust left over from Watergate and Nixon’s pardon. I was disillusioned my first vote had ended badly.  So Carter was likely a protest vote, and he seemed a decent person. (At least history has proven me right about Jimmy Carter’s character.)

From 1976-80, I was busy being a wife, mother to a toddler, Cal Poly SLO college student and newspaper intern for the then “Five Cities Times-Press-Recorder.” The internship turned into a job offer and I became involved with the politics of nuclear power, education, California agriculture and small town government.

I also covered state and national politicians: California Governor Pete Wilson (R); then Congressman Leon Panetta (D); the first, young iteration of Governor Jerry Brown (D).  I knew and was known by City Council members in Arroyo Grande, Pismo Beach and Grover City, as well as Avila Beach Harbor Commissioners and members of the Arroyo Grande Board of Education.

Surprisingly I seemed to be respected and trusted by both the anti-nuclear protestors known as Mothers for Peace, and the representatives of their foe, Pacific Gas and Electric Company in its bid to bring Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant on line.

As a then single parent, after 6 years with the paper, I went to work at PG&E to give my son a better quality of life than my newspaper salary afforded me.  I worked for them first as a media rep in the Salinas-Monterey area, away from Diablo Canyon.  I did not want to rep the company in the San Luis Obispo area when I had been a neutral arbiter in that media market vis a vis Diablo Canyon.

I joined the local Monterey League of Women voters as a company rep, and I once saw then Carmel Mayor Clint Eastwood coming with Sandra Locke out of a movie as my date and I waited to get in.

But it was as a Public Affairs rep for the company in the San Jose regional office that I started to get a better look at how the PG&E folks on the political side did their work. While my own duties became more focused on internal employee communications and special projects, we were a small office and my boss came from the political side of the corporate headquarters.  I got to see how the rest of the sausage got made within a corporate structure that relied on political support for its plans to come to fruition.

While they happily worked both sides of the aisle, the preference was decidedly in favor of Republicans at that time.  It was while working for PG&E that I first started thinking of my own self as a “Republican.” (Though shout out to John Kerry – I was part of a group of PG&Ers that had a drink with you in the mid-80s in a San Francisco hotel bar!)

As I moved to Atlanta and continued to work in environments that skewed Republican, my own voting record continued along the same spectrum.  I was never a “rebel” of the 60s and 70s, even all those years I lived in California.  I was an Indiana girl born and bred and still am to this day.

But then came Trump. And all the values I thought the Republican Party believed in got turned on their head. The decency whooshed out of the party like air from an over-blown balloon.  And I knew a Hillary Clinton vote was the only one I could cast in good conscience for democracy’s  sake.

As a Catholic in the South, most of those with whom I attend Church do not understand my choice to disengage as a Republican supporter and go back to being a Democratic one.  They care passionately about right-to-life issues and vote that way.

Even though I believe with them that life begins at conception, there are a whole host of social justice issues addressed by Jesus in the Bible, and I cannot ignore them to the favor of one.  Just like a whole-hearted belief in Christ, his commands to feed the poor, take care of the elderly, the orphan, the stranger…they all bear equal weight.  I cannot suborn all these for the sake of one of them, however important it might be.  There is no “ranked choice” voting in his command.

And as I have said, I have become a much better reader of history and politics than I was when I was younger and more busy with working and mothering than other things. Had John Heilemann and Mark Halperin, along with HBO, had the prescience to put out “Game Change” BEFORE the 2008 election, my horror at Sarah Palin’s general ignorance and intemperance would have had me cast my vote for Barack Obama over John McCain.

In fact, as the years have passed, my lack of votes for Obama are my greatest political shame.  I have much to atone for there.  Not that he turned out to be a radically liberal leader.  But he was all those things the Republicans had started to just pretend to be: decent, honorable, kind, a man of true family values.  That he was brilliant and managed – with Nancy Pelosi’s help – to pass the ACA despite Republican blockades to it – was icing on the cake.

For the first time in years, my sister had health care and could have preventive female check-ups she had long skipped.

The ACA was a first step toward a proclamation that health care is a human right. It didn’t pave the superhighway wanted by current supporters of Bernie Sanders, but it was an achievement I believe they do not understand how hard it was to claim.

So there you have my political story from Democrat to Republican to Democrat again.  In 2020, my first candidate of choice was Beto O’Rourke, for he did inspire me the way Bobby Kennedy once inspired my 15-year-old self.

When Beto left the race, I didn’t have a preferred candidate.  Like others I was watching, listening, reading and waiting.  Then Trump recklessly assassinated Soleimani and nearly brought us to the edge of all out Mid-East war.

At that point, I realized Joe Biden was the only candidate with the requisite domestic AND foreign policy experience who could quickly form a government for the many challenges we face here and abroad.

I have been #TeamBiden ever since.

I can’t promise how the consequences of my vote will turn out.

Just that it is one of the more thoughtful ones I will have made.

people holding banner near building

 

Waiting for the Next POTUS

I can’t speak for all moderate Democrats, but I was sorely disappointed by the Nevada debate performance of all six candidates on stage last night.

I was hoping for more clarity on who would claim the moderate mantel. It wasn’t there by debate’s end.

If I wanted to watch people rip flesh off one another, I would have turned to one of the Bravo Housewives programs.

Okay, I get Elizabeth Warren was using Mike Bloomberg as a stand in for Donald Trump and the billionaire class in general. And she took a good bit of flesh in the process.

But for each bad thing you can say about Bloomberg as a businessman or politician, you can say something equally good about him as a philanthropist and donor. There is Everytown, the 2013 gun control group he created.

There is the fact that Democrats flipped the House in 2018 on Bloomberg’s dime. And his pledge to spend lots of those dimes supporting whomever is the eventual nominee if it turns out not to be him. 

When the enemy of your enemy has become your friend (even temporarily), you don’t publicly flay him as opposed to comparing your policy differences or settling for pointing out his flaws.

Especially when the real enemy is sitting on a campaign war chest that has barely been used yet.

Bernie was just Bernie to me.  He raged away, his face turning various shades of red depending on how loudly he was yelling at the time.  Even the palms of his hands turned red.  And when I watched this, and realized this guy just had a heart attack a few months ago, it made me wonder how far off the next one will be.

I just don’t see Bernie and his “my way or the highway” style as able to unify Democrats when all is said and done, let alone the country.  The fact he isn’t transparent about the price tag on his programs makes it hard to argue the case on his behalf to your friends.

A Medicare option that the general public or companies can buy is something I can support.  I think it is political malpractice by both parties that they haven’t figured out a way to do this before now, as well as adjust Medicaid requirements to ensure those who cannot afford healthcare have access to preventative, urgent care and hospitalization.

A healthy public is a productive public, to put it in terms you would THINK the Republicans could understand, if they can’t support healthcare as a human right.

(Along the same lines, so is a well-educated public…a horse of nearly the same color.)

Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar were all disappointing in their own ways.  Biden on a debate stage is not the same as Biden the retail politician whose genuine ability to connect with people in real life lights up a room.

Mayor Pete pulling on Klobuchar’s pigtails and making sure we all remember she couldn’t remember the name of the Mexican President seemed overdone, as did her exasperation that he held her to account for it.

(I admit at the time I was a little aghast by this, but her answer for it was reasonable.) 

I was into the Girl Power moment of Warren speaking up on Klobuchar’s behalf.  This is something I don’t think men would do for one another when competing for the same “prize.”

I had expected Bloomberg to be “dry” and “technocratic,” as he has been described.  But I didn’t expect him to be wooden, too.

His best moment was when he asked who else on the stage had ever started a business.  Because like billionaires or not, they create the jobs that the rest of us need, whether that business is privately or corporately held. 

Most disappointing, no one talked about the crumbling of our democracy all around us.  There was no outcry about Trump’s takeover of the Justice Department and decriminalization of white collar crime that is occurring because to Trump, white collar crime is just business as usual.  

There was also no discussion about immigration and DREAMERS, though kids in cages got a brief mention.  And they were debating in Las Vegas!!!

Coronavirus and how that, on top of Trump’s disastrous trade war with China, is going to affect us both medically and in consumer terms…not a whisper.

My preferred candidate…Beto O’Rourke…dropped out. My back-up candidate…Joe Biden…is not doing well.

If I am supposed to coalesce behind someone else, right now I don’t know who that is.

Perhaps Warren, whose foreign policy background is better than I knew, will end up being it.  I don’t know though.  She has been uneven in her presentation, and sometimes overly passionate about her “fight.”

Because to go back to the beginning, anyone close to moderate hasn’t even talked that much about foreign policy…or any other policy and how it will make my life better for me and my fellow citizens.

At least not last night.

person dropping paper on box

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The Black Hole Named Trump

How do we live in community when so many people these days want to live in a world without compromise?

What’s going to be the animating force that unites us?

For Democratic, Democratic-leaning Independents and Never-Trumpers, I naively thought it was voting Trump out of office. But I may be wrong.

My Twitter feed has turned into a battleground recently where if you don’t subscribe to someone else’s complete ideological framework, you are suddenly no longer a member of the coalition. You have become an enemy…even if you are in agreement 99.9% of the time otherwise.

I am currently supporting Joe Biden after having first supported Beto O’Rourke. If Beto were still running, I would still be supporting him. I switched to Biden after Beto dropped out and after Donald Trump’s reckless strike against Iran by killing Soleimani. That this action didn’t get us into war with Iran throughout the Mid-East has more to do with Iran’s restraint than it does Trump’s.

Of all the candidates, I felt Biden could most quickly restore domestic government norms and get us more quickly back into vital international relationships that Trump has damaged or outright destroyed. I still feel this way.


But I am still required to consider the positives and negatives of all the other candidates if Biden isn’t ultimately the nominee. This includes Mike Bloomberg, given how he is currently polling. It includes Bernie Sanders, because he currently holds the lead in the popular vote. It includes Pete Buttigieg because he has the most delegates. It includes Amy Klobuchar, who is currently surging after New Hampshire. It includes Elizabeth Warren, who still has a significant campaign.

Do I have concerns about some of these candidates? Of course I do. I don’t particularly like the idea that the only way to beat Trump is by another billionaire self-funding his race. There are remarks Bloomberg has made about black youth during “stop and frisk,” his comments about “redlining” and now an article about comments he has made about women within his tech organization. I find all these highly dissatisfactory.

I have concerns about Sanders. I had them in 2016. I see no way of getting to his dream of government without becoming a different type of autocracy that isn’t much better than Trump’s in that it is antithetical to the idea of a democratic Republic on which we are Constitutionally based.

Warren seems desperate right now instead of confident and steady. Klobuchar is full of campaign statements about electability, but not a vision. Buttigieg has a Black voter and experience problem.

Even my currently preferred candidate – Biden – I question on his age and ability to handle Presidential rigors. I am just counting on him being smart enough to put highly energetic, get it done people around him. And self-limit himself to one term, though I don’t expect that announcement just now.

This is what I do know: Trump is evil. He is devoid of moral character. He is devoid of empathy and compassion. He is completely and clinically narcissistic, whether your idea of that is Lucifer defying God because he thought he was better than a Man-God who would bring salvation, or the myth of Narcissus, who fell so in love with his own image he became incapable of loving anyone but himself.

Trump is the darkness of an all-consuming black hole. Those of us who see that must be the light.

Turning on each other diminishes that light.

In the end, it will take not turning on each other, record voter turnout and “voting blue no matter who” to oust Trump and his GOP enablers.

Even if some of us would rather have a more ideologically pure nominee.

Even if we have to hold our nose while we vote. 

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“Don’t Agonize; Organize…”

That was Rep Zoe Lofgren’s (D-CA) advice in the fallout of the tabulation controversy that was the Iowa Caucus result that overshadowed by days the announced winner.

(For posterity, it was Mayor Pete Buttigieg in delegate count and Bernie Sanders in the popular vote. But as history in the Age of Trump has taught us, it is ultimately delegates and how they translate into electors in the Electoral College that matter; just ask Hillary).

Until this election, I have always been a passive voter, even when I was aghast that the Republican Party I had voted for since Reagan not only made Donald J. Trump it’s nominee, but twisted and contorted itself to resemble Trump rather than he lead the party according to the principles and the Constitution it claims to respect.

I recognized the danger of Trump from the beginning; I viewed him as completely unqualified by experience, temperament and character to be President. I wasn’t wrong, but I didn’t go far enough in my concern. Other than to vote for Clinton, I didn’t get off the couch, connect with an organized group and do everything I could to stop Trump from becoming President.

Yes, we are in the midst of a climate crisis that should have alarm bells ringing higher than the Dow climbs for billionaire tax breaks and corporate de-regulation. Yes, college grads are drowning in debt to qualify for entry level jobs that don’t allow them to live as comfortably as those who came before them. Yes, we need to remodel our educational, healthcare and infrastructure systems.

But as critical as all that is, it is not the most immediate threat we face: Trump is. If we do not vote in large enough numbers to grant us the greater number of Electoral College votes, we may not have time in future to correct all the current challenges that could overwhelm us and the world in which we live.

If you don’t get off the couch to do anything else, please go vote on Election Day for whomever the Democratic nominee may be.

As for me, I will be busy helping to organize that voter turnout in November by joining with local groups here in GA and hopefully for the eventual nominee.

At 66, I am lacing up my sneakers and getting politically active for the first time in my life.

The Power of Prayer

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48)

At today’s National Prayer Breakfast, President Donald J. Trump refused to accept that Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) made a faith-based decision when he voted “guilty” on the First Article of Impeachment against Trump for abusing his Presidential power in furtherance of his own re-election campaign.

He refused to believe devout Catholic and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would pray for him. And he made sure to do it in front of an audience that included the Speaker herself.

It is one thing to disagree with someone on matters of policy.  To pretend you know someone’s heart for their faith and basically call them a liar is another matter altogether.

Everyone’s faith journey is uniquely their own, even when you sit through something as liturgical as a Catholic Mass.

Each person sits in their house of faith carrying their own personal hopes, dreams, burdens and worries. This is the uniquely personal relationship we have (if we are believers) with a God who seems at times remote, inscrutable – even contrarian – to us.

But for Christians, if Christ is the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy and represents the new Ark of the Covenant, the new Temple, then it is on his Gospel that we should base our actions.

I am far from perfect in doing this. A former GOP voter who has been against Trump’s presidency since he announced his candidacy, I have tweeted things that in any other situation I would never have done.

But I have done so with the conviction that I am speaking out for democracy, the preservation of the Constitution and the Republic, and trying to point out the dangers of the slide into fascist autocracy we seemingly are headed.

I have done so with the conviction Trump was never qualified – by experience, temperament, or character – to lead this country.

I wish I were as good a Christian as Speaker Pelosi and could say I have prayed for Trump personally, although recently I have become genuinely concerned about the state of his health. He seems unwell to me, sometimes beyond animated, other times as if he is drugged.

This is more than “Trump being Trump.”  If he is facing a mental and physical decline of some sort, and his Cabinet, staff and family are covering for this, it not only goes to being against the interests of the nation, but also against his personal interest.

You don’t feed delusion with fantasy.

I do pray for the nation, for good governance, for wisdom of leadership.

Following the path of Christ -the Way of the Cross- is not easy to tread. As he stumbled, fell, and rose again throughout his march down the Via Dolorosa, so do we who call ourselves Christians in our own daily lives.

But it is clear in Christ’s words that we don’t judge one another’s faith as we make our individual walk.

Perhaps if we better accepted this, we might better tolerate each other even within our political divides.

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In The Midst Of The Storm

First, I must give credit to historian Jon Meacham for the title of this day’s blog.

It was his answer on an MSNBC show where he was asked where the country is “at” following the GOP acquittal of President Donald J. Trump.

It also seems like a great title for the last year of my life.

I have endured the deaths of a sister and a friend of 46-years standing; a feeling of not knowing my place within my immediate family structure; a deep depressive cycle and a recent surgery.

It feels very much like the storm has been raging, and, like the Disciples in the boat, I have clung to the boat’s timber instead of my Lord’s presence.

So the hearings, trial and the acquittal of Trump added a layer of oppression on top of everything else; the outcome seemed to be a given, but there was always a faint hope that GOP Senators would see how dangerous what Trump did was and vote conscience over party.

Only one among them did; for this Mitt Romney has cemented his place in the history books beyond a footnote.

I watched the majority of the proceedings of Trump’s impeachment. I viewed 11 days of hearings with 17 witnesses.  I watched opening and closing arguments from both sides in the impeachment trial. I watched the roll call votes of the Senate regarding the introduction of witnesses like John Bolton and Mick Mulvaney, as well as documents Trump would tweet brazenly that Democrats didn’t have, because they were in White House possession in defiance of Congressionally issued subpoenas.

I watched the Senate cast votes of guilty or not guilty to both Articles of Impeachment.

I listened as Chief Justice Roberts announced Trump’s acquittal because a 2/3 vote of the Senate could not be had, was never going to be had, was gleefully, defiantly announced in advance would not be had by people like Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-KY), Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Senator Ted Cruz ( R-TX).

I had heard McConnell talk of coordinating with Trump on impeachment strategy.

I read about Senator Rand Paul’s (R-KY) defiance of the Chief Justice in going on the Senate floor to read a question the Justice deemed inappropriate because it named the whistleblower of Trump’s Ukraine quid pro quo scheme.

And I wondered what would become of my country.

I did not watch the State of the Union address, because I knew it would be filled with the usual Trump grandiosity and deliberately false information designed to mislead.  All the post SOTU analysis I heard and read confirmed the wisdom of watching a movie rather than another episode of The Trump Show.

Now that impeachment is over, I am starting to feel renewed. Now there is a clarity for what comes next:

Do all that I can to help turn out the Democratic vote.

The storm is still raging, but I know whose hand to grasp as I attempt to be a disciple for democracy.

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Are You Really a U.S. Citizen?

My son gets upset with me for getting upset over things I cannot control.

Particularly any news to do with the Trump Administration. He feels it is futile and all that counts is voting to get Trump out in 2020. Unlike his mother, he spends no time foaming at the mouth about the latest Trumpian outrage trending on Twitter. Or tweeting at anyone and everyone about it.

Today it is on his behalf I am angry. And on behalf of the service members whose children born overseas in future who will not be automatic U.S. citizens, even though their parents are.

My son is a military baby born at a hospital on a U.S. military base. I am myself a veteran, and was at the time of his birth a military spouse. My ex and I are both U.S. citizens.

I have nephews born on U.S. military soil in Germany and at home. I am wondering how many G.I.s who brought home wives and children from places like Korea, Germany, Vietnam, Japan, etc. are feeling like I do at the moment: incredulous that the Commander-in-Chief of our military has such contempt and disdain for those who have and will serve. Because I have to wonder: if the Trump Administration will go this far, what’s to stop it from retroactively saying children of service members previously born overseas are now no longer citizens?

Don’t think it could happen? Seriously, don’t put it past Trump or the follicle-challenged Stephen Miller.

How can you claim to love this country, but not its citizens who serve it?

Isn’t that what GOP politics is supposed to be about: God, country, family and apple pie?

I used to think it was. I voted for that for decades. But as with many of my most important relationships, I didn’t recognize I was being lied to.

With the men in my life, I have come to accept I was lousy at picking them. If they were charming and sociopathic, I was a sucker for them.

But I didn’t see it in the GOP until the time of Trump. I bought into the whole Americana vision – of all the things I wanted for my child that I didn’t have growing up.

But it was all built on lies. When your own country can send you into battle but your valor isn’t enough to ensure your children have your birthright – it’s all a lie, isn’t it? It would be like telling the Jews in Egyptian captivity that they could never become Israelites after 400 years of slavery.

So, the entire premise of who we are as citizens of a Republic built on a democratic vision is a falsity.

At least in the eyes of Donald J. Trump.

In the end, if you one day cannot trace your lineage to the Trump family, as people in the Mayflower Society so snobbishly trace theirs to those who landed at Plymouth Rock, you may find yourself not a citizen at all.

That may sound preposterous. So was the idea that U.S. military serving abroad could have children who were not considered citizens of our nation.

Right now it is all about the soil. But one day it could be about the blood as well.

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Crushin’ It

Most of my Twitter activity consists of making what I think are obvious comments to Congress that I am sure no Congress member on either side of the aisle has ever seen, because, well, algorithms, right?

Still, I hope something I say sways a mind here or there, so I continue to #Resist my little heart out.

Every once in awhile, I give in on Twitter and watch the cats being hysterical videos, or answer questions about the color you are currently wearing and what you last ate equals your band name. That would be Hot Pink Burger, thank you.

Today, John Pavlovitz asked about first celebrity crushes. Well, I kind of remember Elvis performing for the first time on the Ed Sullivan show, but I was only three, so that couldn’t really be it.

Ah, but I do very much remember the Fab Four’s first Sullivan gig, most especially Paul McCartney. My 10-year-old heart beat only for him.

At recess, my friends and I would play we were the Beatles’ girlfriends. Carol Brandenburg somehow always insisted she be Paul’s and got her way; just like she got my new doll the day my parents stopped at her house to visit. She wouldn’t stop screaming as we were leaving until they gave my doll to her. Don’t even get me started about our sandbox fight over Kenny Sanders in the second grade.

Paul was not easily replaced in my heart, though by junior high, my two-year crush on the very real Jimmy Crowl did dim Paul’s glow a bit. But just like Paul, Jimmy Crowl was destined never to be my boyfriend. My loss felt more greatly than his, I’m sure.

By the time I turned 16, I was deeply into Clint Eastwood. Too young for him in his “Rawhide” years, Clint was my celebrity crush of choice at the 60’s end. It didn’t last long – his spaghetti westerns, “Play Misty for Me,” “ The Beguiled.” Because I quickly became less than beguiled by Clint when a new leading man fell asleep at the bar wearing his Navy whites.

For the rest of the 70s, there was only one celebrity on whom I could crush in the darkened theaters where I spent my Saturdays: Redford. Robert Redford.

It didn’t matter the role. For me he was Hubble, in a different story, with a different name. But Hubble, always Hubble.

While Redford stayed on my crush radar for many years, from 1980-88 there was only one celebrity mustache that tickled my fancy. Do I even have to name the TV show? Maybe I should challenge you to investigate this not very private celebrity crush I held.

Everyone who knew me then knew I was wild about Tom Selleck. And on my first trip to Hawaii in the mid-80s, I missed becoming his wife by only 20 minutes. I think I will let that one sit and make y’all wonder: whaaat? 😳

All with Tom, however, was not lost. As a bon voyage gift, some friends gave me a night shirt with his face plastered on it. To this day I delight in saying I slept with Tom Selleck when I was in Hawaii. (Sorry my son; your mother is embarrassing, I know.) 🤦🏼‍♀️

Meanwhile, most of the Brat Packers left much to be desired, with the exception of James Spader. And I could only allow myself to crush on him because of that thing he had with Susan Sarandon in “White Palace.” He was just so yummy and sweet faced in those days, even when he played the meanest roles.

As the 80s melted into the 90s ( and me my 40s), my celebrity crushes came fewer and farther between. Of course Patrick Swayze. How could one not crush on a guy who can look and dance like that. I mean, seriously, hellooo…🙄 Not to mention all those shirtless scenes in “Road House.” ( Notice I am not mentioning his buck naked one. Am trying to keep this fairly PG-13.)

But really, in the 90s and 2000s, I crushed on no one actor in particular. I guess I was playing the field. In my dreams.

Today, at 66, I am a bit of a Benjamin Button when it comes to celebrity crushes. I am aging backwards in terms of actors who take my breath away merely by looking at them. If I had to pick just one, it would be Keanu Reeves. Too young for me when he started his excellent acting adventures, by the time he wooed Diane Keaton in “Something’s Gotta Give,” I was seriously in love and have remained so in both his current role as John Wick and in retrospect of some of his earlier roles. Keanu and cute James Spader in the same movie? A double feature.

On whom will I cast an eye when I am 75, or, God willing, 85? Who knows? But I am sure he will reliably be there. And when I first see him, I will crush it.

In the end, however, there is only one actor in one role for whom I have always looked for a real-life counterpart: Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

I have yet to find that man. I guess I will have to settle for the film. I’m crushed. 😢

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Source: shakespeare.tumbler.com