PUSH UPS …

For those who’ve been waiting for me to finally do a pod cast, here is a sneak peek of what it will be.

I’ve been workin on it for a good while, had many meetings with networks and other pod casters and have already recorded several episodes. I will be announcing the official “launch,” soon. At the moment, it isn’t on any sites or networks. You can only get this one – today – right here.

All of the access and information will be coming soon. And those of you who are followers and subscribers will be the first to know about all of it.

In the meantime, I thought I would post yesterday’s episode in lieu of a written blog. Think of it as a trial run or a dress rehearsal.

I hope my adolescent voice and southern accent doesn’t ruin the mystique …

R

click the link to listen:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/2592gix70n0c7rn/push%20ups%20mix_06.aif?dl=0

LIFE AND LAWS …

It’s the blood that bothers me the most.

The fact that the mother’s blood doesn’t mingle with the child’s blood…yeah…that bothers me. 

Also, whenever a woman says, “I’m eating for two, now,” I always ask myself, “So, that IS a whole other person in there?” 

Anyway …

We’ve all got our opinions on abortion. It’s one of the primary issues with which our country grapples. It essentially divides us into two groups. 

I know of so many people (often, women) who don’t realize how staunchly conservative they are, save one issue…abortion. I also know a lot of people who think they are conservatives but who really aren’t…until it comes to that subject. 

This issue cuts through the fabric of our culture like a sword. 

It sprang out of the sexual revolution. Women got tired of being told what to do. They wanted the power and control over their own bodies. I totally get that. I want power and control over my own body, too. I guess the only thing I would say to women, from someone with “white, male privilege” is that no matter how much power and control you think you have over your own body, it doesn’t exempt you from consequences

I personally know of three women who had this procedure in their youth. No…the progeny in question weren’t mine, (the Mumps secured my place in the “unable to re-produce” category many years ago), but the afore-mentioned women live with deep, emotional scars. I’ve heard them discuss it and they all believe that what was inside them was indeed a human life. 

To a woman, they all regret their decision. I make no judgements or statements and preach no sermons…I always just listen. 

I also know of men who got someone pregnant and then got hit for child support after the fact, even though they didn’t want the child. 

If a man doesn’t want a child, they’re called “a deadbeat dad.” If a woman doesn’t want a child, she’s merely exercising her rights. But I digress …

The abortion debate is essentially a battle over who gets to live and who doesn’t – and who gets to make that decision. It’s no more complicated than that. And a lot of women firmly believe that until the child inside them takes its first breath of fresh, earth air, they are the sole arbiters of the child’s existence. I don’t argue this point. I never have. But if I were going to argue it, there’s a lot of science on that side of the argument. 

I have questions for those who refuse to accept a human fetus as human life: 

Why do we do “prenatal” care if we’re not protecting a life? 

Why do we discourage women from smoking or drinking or even eating tuna while they’re pregnant, if it’s not to protect a completely different, autonomous entity? That has always nagged at me. 

Why do we charge someone with double homicide if they kill a pregnant woman?

Oh, whatever …

I watched a whole segment, once, on Good Morning America, about prenatal care and all the things you should do to “protect” your unborn child. Then, literally as they were going to commercial break, the anchor said, “Next, the debate over abortion heats up!” 

And I couldn’t help but think to myself, “so, you do all this stuff to keep your unborn baby safe…unless you decide to kill it at the last minute?” 

It was hard to reconcile. 

Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, would not have approved of my son and DEFINITELY not daughter…or my son’s best friend…or half of the NFL or NBA, or Beethoven, or James Brown, or Richard Pryor, or Steve Jobs, or Andrea Bocelli, or Faith Hill, or Hellen Keller, or Stephen Hawking, or Maya Angelou, or Oprah Winfrey, or pretty much any hip hop artist…or my own brother. 

These are all examples of people who were either “accidents,” given up for adoption, born into poverty or born into minority status, without hope or prospects. Or, they were the worst sin of all…born with a disability. 

Margaret believed we needed to “weed” these people out (her words – not mine). Hence, Planned Parenthood (the mission statement is right there in the name). 

I’m really glad all of the aforementioned people didn’t get “weeded out.” Especially my kids and my brother…and James Brown.

Then again, I understand the other argument. Hear me out …

My daughter has one of the rarest genetic disorders on planet earth. She cannot speak or care for herself in any way. There is an 80% molestation rate among people with disabilities. It’s completely insidious because predators know these are the weakest among us. And they act on it. And it sickens me. 

God forbid my daughter were to get raped and pregnant, we know that she would not be able to carry a child to term. It would kill her or kill the baby. We know this. It has happened. And even if she were to somehow carry it to term, it would have to be adopted immediately. She would not be able to care for it. 

Furthermore, there is a 50% chance the baby would be born with Angelman Syndrome, making it much more difficult to adopt out. 

These things keep me awake at night. And if I’m being honest, I would like to know there would be options for her, in an unthinkable situation like that. Some people have assured me that God would never let something happen. Then, they got on with their day, while I was there, still taking care of a person no one ever comes to take to the mall or to the park or to a birthday party. 

Yeah …God takes care of it. I get it. 

The harsh truth is you’re not really “pro-life” unless you have adopted children. Let me repeat that: you are not really pro-life unless you have adopted children. 

You may be philosophically opposed to abortion. But that is very different than being an active participant in protecting and providing for existing human life. It’s hard to listen to and face, but as long as there are orphans in the world, there aren’t enough people who actively embrace the idea of caring for all life. 

Here are some things to think about and ask yourself: 

If abortions are made illegal in all 50 states, there will be millions more children (many of whom will be children with special needs) who need to be adopted. How many children are you prepared to adopt? How many families with multiple children with disabilities, are you prepared to support? 

If ALL life is precious, regardless of how it is made, how many single mothers who sleep around and get pregnant by multiple fathers are you prepared to help support? After all, it isn’t the child’s fault how they got here. 

Some liberal states are taking abortion to a grisly end; allowing for abortions right up until the due date. They are even talking about ending the life, after the child has been born. One governor said, “we will keep it comfortable until the mother makes the decision.” 

Keep WHAT comfortable?!?! And if it’s not a life, why do you need to keep it comfortable? 

Whatever …

Then, on the other end of the spectrum, in the orthodox south (Texas being the latest hot spot), they are passing laws they believe to be righteous. And I get it. But in actual practice, do we really achieve anything by turning women who get abortions into criminals?

I’ve asked a lot of questions and provided almost no answers. Maybe that’s because the actual answers are not easy ones and they’re not ones we really want to hear. And unless we were prepared to face those answers honestly, this conversation will continue to be pointless. 

People (mostly conservatives) often tell me they want me to run for some sort of office. I always reply by saying, “You wouldn’t vote for me. Trust me.” And it’s because of this …

I’m personally a big fan of how Rudy Giuliani handled the issue in New York City. 

He was constantly excoriated by conservatives for being pro-choice, but abortions went down substantially in NYC on his watch. Why? He worked to champion adoption laws that favored adoptive parents and that gave pregnant girls better and more streamline alternatives. 

That’s actual problem solving and not just partisan rhetoric. Thats what I’m looking for. 

Yelling at people and debating the issue doesn’t bring babies into the world. Neither do stricter state laws. 

The fact is, there are more families waiting to adopt children than there are available children in the United States right now. I’ll bet you didn’t know that. Because adoption laws are so screwed up from state to state, adoptive families opt for overseas adoptions. My family was one of those. If you want to really end abortion, lobby for more favorable adoption laws in your state. 

Then, if you’re really serious, adopt a child. Find a pregnant girl looking for options, and give her a great one. 

That’s what life is all about. 

R

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IF ONLY…

It’s my least favorite sports argument of all time …

Would Barry Sanders be the all time leading rusher, in the NFL, if he had stayed in the game?

Who cares? 

He didn’t. So he isn’t. And Emit Smith is. Because he did. 

What an insult to a person who sacrificed and struggled and worked and played hurt and got every extra yard, to even entertain the debate. Was Barry Sanders a great player? Absolutely. Might he have gotten and held the title if he’d kept playing?

A lot of things might have happened…if only. But that’s not how records (or life) are measured. Nothing is measured by “if only.”  

I’ve seen debates on Facebook, talking about how things would’ve been better or worse if Donald Trump had been in charge during the Afghanistan debacle. And it’s a completely moot point. 

There is this murky alternate universe, filled with billions and billions of moving parts that all change each other as they are unfolding, where we speculate as to what may or may not have been. 

Then, there’s the one we actually live in…where we can see, in real time, what is actually happening. Not what might’ve happened. Not what should’ve happened. Not what was supposed to happen. But whatactually happened. 

If you think Trump (or anyone) would’ve handled it better, make sure you remember that when you vote. If you think Trump would’ve handled it worse…sorry…you get the government you vote for. And when they screw up in a way that is remarkable by any standard, you get to share in that reality. You helped bring it about. 

Might it have been worse? It doesn’t matter. It simply is. 

There is only what is and what isn’t  

And until you fully wrap your head around this concept, you will allow yourself to occasionally live in the “if only.” 

It’s easy to do. 

“If I had only caught that pass in front of the scouts, I would have gotten the scholarship.” 

“If I had been there 3 minutes earlier, I would’ve been the one that convenience store sold the winning lottery ticket to.”

“If I had been born with her skin tone and hair color, I would’ve been picked for the cheerleading team.”

“If I were running that company, we would do such and such …”

And on and on it goes. 

Meanwhile, while we are trying to figure out where we went wrong in the past, the present is staring us right in the face…right here, right now. 

I’ve told the story before (and I’m not going to go back into it), but I accidentally overheard a doctor tell my mother (when I was 10) that I probably wouldn’t live past age 21. It was all about Rheumatic fever and heart damage and a lot of other drama. I’m 54 and doing fine. It all worked out. But it did instill a sense of urgency in me that has never left. 

You literally have no idea when you’re going to die. It may be tomorrow. It may be before the sun goes down, tonight. It may not be for decades. But if you ever get a time limit placed on your life, it will change it forever. 

There is no more time for, “As soon as I get this and that lined up, I’m really going to kick it into gear,” talk. There is no time to wait until the perfect circumstances are in front of you (they never will be, by the way). 

If you are going to contribute anything to life, you have to act. Period. 

My number one pet peeve in the entertainment business, is watching people squander months and years, waiting on this to happen or that to happen, thinking that they will be saved by the right planets lining up at the right time. 

Not gonna happen. 

Whatever it is you were going to do…do it now. It’s time. Because when you’re gone, nobody is going to stand over your body and give a list of all the things you were “this close” to making happen.

You have one life. One body. One mind. And it has all been put here for a reason. Once you fullybuy into that, you will never waste another second of another day. 

And there will be no more excuses and dwelling in the past. There will only be learning from mistakes and moving on. There will be less “but…but…but…” and more “okay…what’s next?” talk. 

Understanding that life is a full participation, no points for the thing-that-was-messed-up-by-somebody-else’s-mistake, all in or not in at all, proposition, will turn your “dreams” into actualgoals. Because you will finally come to the realization that those dreams will not get closer to coming true while everything is static. 

I’ve lost 3 very important friends to death in the past 10 days. 

All 3 were extremely accomplished and brilliant in their respective careers. And the thing that has been gnawing at me the most about it has been the hard, cold reality that the world doesn’t get anything else from them…ever…EVER. 

Whatever they did or wrote or played or said or changed is done. Their stories are written. And no amount of “if only” will change what those stories are. They are now in stone…literally. 

Is this the story you wanted to write? Or, are you still blaming your situation for it not being written correctly? Are you okay with that backlog of projects collecting dust? Or is it time to put wheels under them and move forward? 

Sometimes, you need to close your eyes and picture your own funeral, as if it’s going to happen tomorrow. You okay with what you’re seeing? 

Did you wring every ounce of life out of what you were gifted with? Did you say what you came here to say? Do what you came here to do?

If you’re seeing a lot of “if only’s” there, it’s time to remove them and make “what is” as spectacular as “what might have been.” 

Because trust me, friends, that ceremony might be closer than you think …    

R

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ELEPHANTS…

“What is a booking agent?”

This is a standard question in the music business class that I teach. 

I tell my students that very often, the answer to any question you’re asking, about a word or phrase, is in the word itself. So a booking agent is someone who booksshows. The answer is in the word. 

It’s self evident. 

I feel like we complicate things in life, so many times, because we refuse to ask the simple question; the most elementary question. 

We choose our sides and cling to our talking points and make our refined arguments. But sometimes, there is a very simple, almost childlike question hanging out there, that nobody seems to want to approach. 

And while we’re all posturing and positioning, that question just lingers. 

I lost two friends to the big virus this week. All of us who create online content always hesitate to call it by name because we’re trying to sidestep the censors and algorithms. 

Why? Well, that’s a big question we should all be asking. But I digress …

At the same time these to friends have passed away, I have other friends and family members who have contracted the virus, who have been fully vaccinated. And my wife has a couple of co-workers who are having strange physical side-effects (maybe they’re side-effects, who knows) since getting the vaccine. 

I have been immersed in videos and literature on global studies and data surrounding all of this. And, no, none of those studies are coming from my uncle’s brother-in-law who thinks the world is flat and we never went to the moon. 

I’m talking about actual peer reviewed data, being posted by actual doctors and scientists. And even then, a lot of our information is murky at best. 

But here’s the child like question I keep asking that I can’t seem to find an answer to: where are the studies coming out of China? 

I prefer to use universally accepted premises to ask these questions. Not biased ones. It just makes it easier. 

So, here is the universally accepted premise that literally zero people dispute: the virus came from Wuhan, China. Now, there are disputes as to whether it escaped from a lab or a bat cave, but nobody disputes its city of origin. 

Okay…that’s some bedrock we can all stand on. 

So, why isn’t China leading the way in sharing information with the world and holding daily press briefings, letting us know what’s working and what isn’t? Why aren’t we getting a daily tally of cases and deaths from the place where the thing originated? 

This has been my main question  from the beginning – since last year. And it still isn’t being answered. 

If this originated in Cleveland, I can’t imagine the city leaders and local health officials wouldn’t have had to hold at least ONE press conference. And the CDC and WHO would’ve been all over that place tracing and counting and “following the science.” 

But in this case, we seem to be fine with the fact Xi Jinping (General Secretary of The CCP) hasn’t had to answer ONE press question. Not one. Even after the United States has fought and argued and elected a whole new president. 

I’m not even insinuating that Jinping is hiding anything or doing anything bad. I’m simply wondering why the leader of the most populated nation on Earth, and the epicenter of the most disruptive pandemic in a hundred years, hasn’t been available to share information with the rest of the world, and why we’ve all been okay with it. 

Are the death rates rising in China? Are they succumbing to new variants? If not, why not? Are their death numbers accurate? Are independent sources verifying their numbers? Do they have effective treatments they could share with the world? If so, what are they? 

What’s going on over there? I, for one, would like to know. Not because I’m hostile toward them. But because they have more people than any other nation and have more experience with all of these viruses than any other nation. It seems like we should talk to them. Doesn’t it? Is it just me? 

The fact is, we know why nobody wants to ask that question or answer it. Because nobody wants to be characterized as a racist and nobody in power wants to get on the bad side of a communist regime. 

An that’s the big elephant in the room. 

Our Vice President went to Vietnam this week…as another Vietnam was playing out in Afghanistan. 

When we left Vietnam, in 1975, a million people were killed and the communists took over the country. If you study what happened after that, you will get a lesson in how communism destroys in ways you cannot imagine when you’re contemplating its glories in the faculty lounge of your Ivy League college. 

Like every other communist regime in history, Vietnam’s attempt at total collectivism eventually collapsed under its own weight. Now, it’s a destination spot and a place where there is available labor and an emerging economy. 

Our Vice President is able to have a nice visit over there because it’s not fighting for communism anymore. That is always the case, all the time. 

Freedom and free exchanges of ideas are always better. Always. They get us to better places more quickly. Tyranny and collectivism hides the light but liberty illuminates. 

Why is that?

Because collectivism become the only game in town. And the only game in town CANNOT be wrong…no matter what. It cannot be challenged. Because if it’s challenged and found wanting, the entire system becomes suspect. And that leads to the ultimate collapse. 

So it must be protected, even at the expense of lives and livelihoods; hopes and dreams. 

Free and open exchanges allow us to examine and challenge and call out and ultimately get to the answer. It might be painful and ugly sometimes, but that’s what a light shows…the truth. 

There are life and death questions we’re all grappling with right now: Do we get a vaccine? Do we not get it? Do we go out in public? Do we stay home?   Do we send our kids to school? Or do we keep them doing online learning?

We’re in the middle of an extreme public health crisis and there are almost no good options. Whatever decision you make, on any of these things, is going to bring with it risks. 

And you have to make the most informed and reasonable decision you can. Your very life depends on it. 

I just wish we had all the information we could get. But some of it is simply unavailable. 

And nobody is asking why. 

R

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MY COMMERCIAL…

The Babylon Bee has one million followers. One million. 

Their last post got ONE like. ONE. 

Those of us who are in the “content creation” (a term I loathe with every fiber of my being) business, really have no idea what’s going on with the algorithms in any given social media platform. 

We do our research and we try to do all the things; posting on different sites, engaging with friends and followers, picking the right picture for the post (I spend more time searching for pictures than I do actually creating – WAY more time) positing often but not too often, blah, blah, blah. 

The deal is simply this: we’re constantly trying to figure out how to monetize what we do. And it’s an uphill climb to say the least. 

I was once a highly paid songwriter. In fact, I used to make more money JUST from songwriting (not counting producing and performing), ONE JOB, than I do now with the 5 or 6 jobs I do collectively. 

At one time I thought maybe I wasn’t working hard enough or maybe I wasn’t actually good at what I did and people were finally onto me, or I was getting too old and out of touch or a dozen other things. But definitely putting the blame on myself. 

Then, I realized that the game was rigged and I wasn’t part of the club rigging it. 

Some guy shows up with a fancy, new app, that allows you to access billions and billions of dollars worth of recorded material; every song ever recorded in the history of the art form…for $14 a month…and I was suddenly out of a job. 

I’d like to tell you it was more complicated than that. But it wasn’t. 

Anyway …

As my caregiving duties intensified and my time availability got more compressed, I sat down one night and started “blogging.” 

I still, since I posted my first blog on Myspace in 2006, have no idea what a blog is supposed to be. I finally learned, a couple of years ago, that it’s short for “web log,” but I have no idea if I’m doing it right or not. 

I just sit down and start typing. 

For some unknown reason, people seem to respond to these peckings. So I started getting followers and readers and newfound friends and people shared them and reposted them and whatever. 

Pastors have quoted them from the pulpit and I know of at least 3 school teachers who read them to their classes every morning. Personally, I think that is a very bad idea. But hey, it’s a free country. I mean, it used to be …

Through the years, I’ve discovered that there are a few ways to earn money from an existence on the internet: reaching a large audience, or a catering to a dedicated, small audience. 

I kinda fall in the middle, somewhere. 

I don’t write for any particular brand or entity. It’s just me over here in a windowless office, on a 2008 Mac Book Pro, saying things I’ll probably regret later. 

I’ve had several “viral” blogs and every time that happens I hear from blog website people who tell me I could’ve earned this many thousands of dollars if I’d been with their site. 

Then, when I ask about coming on board with their site, I never hear from them again. 

I made a promise to my readers, a few years ago, that I wouldn’t activate the advertising function on my site. But then, I had a blog go uber viral (over 9 million shares, alone) and I lost nearly six figures in income.

Lesson learned. 

So what does any of this have to do with you? What does it have to do with anything? Nothing, actually. But I thought I’d take today and do a little commercial for myself. 

See, like the Bee, I too have been seeing my stats dwindle. Where I would normally get a hundred to two hundred shares on a blog, I’m now getting a fraction of that. I have no idea if I’m being “throttled” or if I’m just not resonating anymore. 

But I know for a fact that I have been reported a few times to the internet police for having opinions that do not comport with what our lords and masters have determined to be safe for public consumption. 

You’ll never see it happening. Nobody from Facebook will call you and say, “Hey, we’re just letting you know that we’re only showing your posts to 3 people today.” 

No, you just won’t be seen or heard or shared and you will never know exactly why. 

So I created some actual Facebook groups to try and mitigate that. But I have no idea how all those ones and zeros work either. 

Here’s what I do know:

Based on my own stats, if every single person in my Facebook blog readers group joined my Patreon page (at $5 a month) I could earn a living just a blogger. If all the  subscribers on my WordPress site joined, I would earn a very handsome living. 

If every person who reads my blog around the globe joined (based on the analytics), I would be the highest paid independent blogger in the world.  

I don’t want your money. I hate sales almost as much as I hate the phrase (content creator). I never sold any candy bars for the elementary school. It’s just not my thing. I would rather have an enormous audience and make all my money on advertising, and never have to see or hear or talk to anybody about anything other than the stuff I want to write about.  

But these are strange times and we are all at the mercy of people in ivory towers, pulling strings as they see fit. 

So, yes, this is a commercial for what I do. If you are finding this on Facebook, consider joining the blog readers group. It may help guarantee that you see these blogs (or whatever they are) of mine. 

If you are so inclined, consider joining the WordPress site. I post a free blog once a week to this site and once posted, it will come directly to your email. I like eliminating billionaire boy wonders from the equation. 

And if you are really passionate about helping those of us who are hell bent on ensuring that our children never go to college, consider becoming a Patron on my Patreon site. 

I post a blog there 5 days a week. And for the upper tiers, there are some other perks. 

For the second tier, ($5 a month) my 5 books are available as well as the blogs. For the 3rd tier ($10), everything I’ve ever created is available; all my records and books. 

Last month, I created a creative writing coaching tier ($100 a month). This is for those who have asked me, through the years, for tips and mentoring on songwriting or just writing in general. I hesitated for a long time to do this, because, trust me – you don’t want megiving you advice on anything – but I did it and so far, the students are sufficiently fooled into believing there is some sort of value in it. 

Disclaimer: *No refunds will be given once you discover I am a complete fraud.*  

 

Writing a thousand words a day is a job in itself. But its one I absolutely adore and have done for free, for many years. But I would love to turn it into something that allows me to eliminate a couple of other things from my daily docket.

And most importantly, I want to do all I can to make sure we can continue to connect through the psychological mine field that is (enter social media platform here). 

Okay…enough about that. Now back to your regularly scheduled apocalypse …

To become a patron, click the link below … 

https://www.patreon.com/m/regiehamm   

PS – I chose the picture to try and use sex to get you to read this blog.

LAS VEGASTAN…

It was always my solution. 

But nobody was asking me or listening to me. Now, as we watch our country and its heroes, close up shop and hot-foot it out of town, leaving behind an entire arsenal to the bad guys, I think I was more right than I knew. 

It was the Covid argument of its time: People, wringing their hands and clutching their pearls over “this endless war,” would occasionally ask me what I thought we should do in Afghanistan. I’m fairly certain they didn’t really want to hear my opinion. Those types of questions are generally asked so the person asking them can then tell you what they think should be done.  They’ve been dying to tell someone. They have all their talking points lined up and they’re ready to unload. 

And, of course, most ideas were trapped in the prison of the political. For some, whatever CNN said to do was the absolute truth. For others, whatever FOX News said to do, was the absolute truth. Does any of this sound familiar?

Nah…surely we’ve gotten over that (insert eye roll here). 

The thing about situations like Afghanistan is that you must deeply examine what you truly believe. Deeply. Those types of scenarios require you to get a 30-thousand-foot look at your own world view. 

I’m amazed at the people who still haven’t done that. 

For me, the answer was always easy and non political. 

What do you do about Afghanistan? You turn it into Las Vegastan. 

Hear me out …

No self respecting American, wanting to be seen as “fair minded,” would agree that nation building is a good thing. It never works. Right?

Wrong.

Nation building works everywhere it is tried. It worked in Japan. It worked in Germany. It worked in South Korea. And yes, it worked in the southern United States. We called it “Reconstruction.” 

What does’t work is military base building.

The human race either honestly embraces its own vices and or it continues to make rigid rules, punishable by the harshest means available, in the governing of itself. 

Those who are the least honest in their allowance for humans to be…well…humans, always end up being the most totalitarian brutalizers. And when you put “God” in the middle of all that nonsense, you run the risk of getting something truly monstrous. 

My wife and I just finished watching all 4 seasons of The Handmaid’s Tale. And the over-aching theme that keeps coming back again and again, is how this crazy, religious fundamentalism took hold and became big and powerful enough to take over the United States (or most of it, anyway). 

How and (more importantly, why) did these people become so backward and brutal and draconian (that’s the new “dystopian” for word people) and unconcerned with entire portions of humanity? 

Hollywood chose to place that hypothetical mantle on white, fundamentalist Christians – probably Trump supporters and MAGA hat wearers. 

But the whole time they were making up this disgusting alternate universe, it was really (like, actually) playing out – in real time – on the other side of the world, in places like Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and Syria. 

You can’t make the bad guys Middle Eastern, though. That would be disrespecting someone’s culture. 

At some point, if we’re really, truly concerned with global human rights, we’re going to have to get over our own “wokeness” and basically say something akin to what Arnold said to free born Americans the other day:“screw your culture.” 

If your culture includes the genital mutilation of little girls…screw your culture. 

If your culture includes women being seen as property (at worst) and second class citizens (at best)…screw your culture. 

If your culture includes the idea that an entire race of people (like, maybe…oh, I dunno…Jews) should be eliminated from the face of the Earth…screw your culture. 

And if you’ve used Afghanistan as a launching base from which to attack the freest nation in the history of the world, then you don’t get to have it anymore. 

I’m that Libertarian other Libertarians hate. Because I actually do believe in Nation building. Live and let live is a wonderful concept, as long as everybody is on the same page, you know…living and letting others live. 

Once that trust is broken, and we see that we’re going to simply be in a clash of wills for all eternity, then it’s time to eliminate some bad ideas and confiscate some land. 

It’s easy to talk about America as a war machine and the world police and the bully in the neighborhood and all of that, until our airfields are overrun with people trying to turn the clock back to the 13th century. 

Sometimes a playground is what is needed to calm everybody down and have them re-think their stringent positions on things. 

Look at Dubai and Quattar. 

Why not have a place where everybody can let their hair down and throw back a few and get a little weird; where rich, Middle Eastern leaders can do something really naughty (that they’re most certainly doing somewhere, away), that would not be accepted by their followers, that the CIA can secretly film and hold them in a perpetual state of blackmail?

It works for our elected officials. 

Maybe if some of those Taliban guys were more in debt to a casino and crushing on the stripper, with a bourbon in their hand, they wouldn’t be so fired up about putting burkas back on people. 

Maybe if you could go see Cirque du Soleil, then grab a world class dinner after, you would chill out a little and bask in the wonders of what motivated humans can achieve, rather than trying to either put them in chains or in a grave. 

Maybe if you could catch Celine Dion in her 3rd residency and marvel at that vocal instrument for ninety minutes or so, you’d go back to your poppy farm a little more inspired and a little less “fundamentalist.”

Believe it or not, this is the vision Trump was tying to sell that little pudgy North Korean dude. People made fun of it, but I got it. And I agreed with it. 

They always say, “we can’t impose our values on other countries.” 

Sure we can. We do it all the time. And we absolutely should. That’s where the “diving deeply into what you believe” part comes in. I believe in human rights and individual liberty and freedom of speech and expression and freedom to assemble and question the government and liberty and justice for all. Which one of those “values” shouldn’t be transplanted into any part of the world?

Which of those values should be held for America only? Or should they also apply to every person, all over the world?

So, yes. We absolutely should import American and western values everywhere we can. Wherever it takes hold, the place will end up better than it was.  

Only, in the case of Afghanistan, we didn’t even try. They call it the graveyard of Empires because all people have ever done is fight there. And we did the same thing. And that’s why we’re leaving in shambles like every other nation in history has done. 

As it stands, the only thing the Afghani people saw from America was military bases and combat boots. And as much as I love the American troops, if you grow up thinking that’s all America is, you will only have a one-sided view of freedom and America.  

The next time we go into a country to root out insanity – and I believe after this week, we’ll probably be going back to this particular country sooner than later – maybe we should bring some night clubs and theaters and bars and listening rooms and art houses as well. 

I’ll be happy to headline at the first casino open. 

   

R

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WHY YOU SHOULD NEVER VOTE FOR A DEMOCRAT…

It was one sentence that probably flew right past everyone. 

But for me, it was the essence of the entire ordeal. It spoke to the heart of why we are where we are, right now. It gave us insight into why platforms are censoring speech (and they are). It showed us why there is open hypocrisy in broad daylight and nobody seems to do anything about it or care anything about it. 

And it mainly telegraphed why you should never – under any circumstances – vote for a Democrat. 

Let me start by saying that I’m not a big fan of Republicans and/or Conservatives. 

They are artless and non creative. Most of the time they are chasing culture instead of creating it. They’re great at middle management but not very adept at world changing (all of the data supports this). They tend to be behind the curve on issues and playing catchup on almost everything. 

They will probably be pretty good at managing the fortune 500 company that builds the new, exciting device. But they won’t be the ones designing that device. 

As an artist, I prefer hanging out with the designer of the device. The suits are not my jam. And the suits tend to be a at least a representation of Republicans/Conservatives. 

Having said all that …

The reason they show up in the first place, is because the Democrat/Liberals are usually screwing things up so badly that somebody with a level head and steady hand has to come in and calm it all down. 

There’s an old saying: the difference between Democrats and Republicans is…Democrats are serious. 

And that is absolutely true. For Democrats, government is a force that must move forward and seize more and more power for the good of “the body politic.” 

Where Republicans see the government as a pragmatic, necessary annoyance, Democrats see the government as tool for change and constant upheaval. The vehicle in which all fixes to all social ills, can ride. 

And so, where a Republican might hem and haw regarding a spending bill, and at least try to make the numbers make sense, a Democrat will usually (with some exceptions) complain that it doesn’t go far enough – even if it’s a spending bill that allocates ten percent of the entire world’s currency for 350 million people…like the one passed last night. 

Whenever Democrats run everything, they always overreach. I’ve seen this happen time and time again. And I predict that in 2022, another House/Senate fruit basket turnover will happen…again…like it did in ’94 and ’10. 

And Americans never seem to learn the lesson: don’t ever, ever, EVER vote for a Democrat. 

Why? 

It’s not because they’re bad people. In fact, a lot of them are wonderful people. But it’s because they have a world view that is embodied in that one sentence Mr. Cuomo uttered yesterday. And we seem to always have to learn over and over again, that “voting for the person, not the party” is kinda stupid. 

Intelligence is knowing that a Democrat might actually make some good points. Wisdom is knowing to never vote for one.

The thing about holding your nose and voting for Republicans is that you know there are always going to be the wobbly ones like George W Bush and Mitt Romney, who will do plenty of social spending. You don’t even need Democrats around with Republicans like them. 

And even though Republicans are usually on the right side when the issues are serious enough: Republicans ended slavery and a Republican signed the 18th and 9th amendments (one outa two ain’t bad). And a higher percentage of Republicans voted for the civil right act than did Democrats, (in fact, the Democrat filibuster of that bill is still the longest in American history), you know that the envelope will not get pushed. Government will move slowly and methodically…the way I like it to move. 

Will you have to roll your eyes a lot and wince in embarrassment? Yep. 

But you won’t wake up in crazy town. 

My state is run by Republicans. It does nothing – NOT ONE THING – for families with special needs kids. I have never collected any sort of state assistance for my daughter, in 19 years. NOT. A. PENNY. 

But…

We also don’t have a state income tax. My property values are through the roof. My quality of life is amazing. And my family is more safe and protected than it would probably be in most states. 

That is a trade-off I’m willing to make. 

So, I watch them use tax payer money to make the Bible the official state book, instead of allocating funds for people like my daughter, and I grit my teeth and get on with my life…which is pretty damn good in this state (a Republican would ask me to change that to darn). 

Meanwhile, Democrats would be all over allocating money for my daughter…and everybody else’s daughter…special needs or not…and then allocating money to stop calling them “daughters” but “sis gender people”…and then forcing the school systems to incorporate the language into every textbook (price be damned – or darned). And on and on it would go. 

And we would have a state income tax in short order. And that would lead to a domino effect that the people of places like New York and California are living through as we speak.

And soon, the people who are pouring into this red state oasis, would be pouring back out…to another one, somewhere. 

And if you don’t believe me, look around you. There is a school board rebellion taking place all around the nation. And it has everything to do with that pesky little sentence I talked about a the beginning. 

One side believes that sentence is debatable and should be put in perspective. And the other side believes and embraces that sentence like scripture. 

The sentence? 

It wasn’t about the 11 pending sexual misconduct cases. It wasn’t about the thousands of elderly people who died because they were mishandled on a stunning scale. It wasn’t about any of the controversy surrounding Governor Cuomo. 

For me, the sentence that spoke to why some people believe they have the right; no, the sacred duty, to mandate vaccines or masks or lockdowns or anything having to do with your own personal agency, was simple and pure and said all you ever need to hear:

“Government is still the best vehicle for positive social change…” Andrew Cuomo. 

If you believe that, then nothing the government does will bother you. If you embrace that idea, then of course you will grant grace to the “sophisticated” among us, as long as they are our betters and are leading us.

You’ll be all for censorship if it weeds out the “misinformation” not sanctioned by your God…the state. In fact, you’ll be for censorship of things that are actually true, as long as it protects your candidate. 

I mean the ends justify the…well, you know.

If you believe government is the answer, Democrats always sound like a good idea. 

But if you believe in the American theory that government should be representative, reasonable and restrained, you might end up shaking your head a lot.

You may have to put up with some ignorance and backward thinking from time to time. You may want to disavow your vote on occasion. There will be some eyebrows raised here and there. 

But at least you’ll be dealing with people who believe the government isn’t and shouldn’t be the end all/be all of human endeavor. for the most part they’ll be about enforcing the contracts you make instead of them making them for you. 

They’ll be about the government doing less…not more. And less is usually better. You can always get more if you need it. But it’s awfully hard to reduce it once it’s more.   

We talk a lot about what divides us. I’m of the opinion that what divides us the most is that one little sentence and how we each feel about it.      

And when you’re regretting that D vote in the last election, and racing to the polling booth to secretly vote for the embarrassing R, always keep that sentence in mind. 

It says everything. 

R

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#TOOLATE?

I’m a late adapter. 

Maybe it’s because I’m really not into fads. 

Anytime something is “all the rage,” I want to run as far from it as I can and wait to see if it survives the hype. If it does, then it’s probably legit. But very often – in fact, most of the time – things don’t actually survive the original hype. And we look back and laugh at ourselves for having been so passionate about them in the first place. 

This is true of everything from pet rocks and free love to mullets and break dancing. 

People move on to the next thing; the next fad or the next outrage.They find new things to purchase or dance to or argue about.  

Right now, we’re all about Covid this and mask that and vaccine the other thing. And unfortunately, it’s life and death. 

But it was a mere three years ago when the watershed moment of #metoo happened. Women rose up and declared their abuse and harassment and assault to the world. And no one sporting a penis was truly out of the crosshairs. 

All of us males were on notice in some way or another. 

Men were apologizing for things they themselves had never done. Nobody could quite figure out what the rules were. Were we allowed to ask someone out on a date? Were we allowed to flirt? Where was the line?

Nobody really knew. But one thing was certain – we had all crossed it at one time or another. At least that’s what we were being told. 

I personally never apologized for anything. Because I’ve never raped or assaulted anyone. I’ve always tried to treat women (and men, for that matter) with respect and decency. I empathized with those who had #metoo stories. My mother and my wife both have them. And men who do things like that should be dealt with in a real way. 

But having said all of that, I’m not going to lie…the height of the #metoo movement started to feel like Disco there toward the end. You can only play that same song in the club so many times and people get weary of doing the hustle. 

The trouble is, the #metoo movement left some actual damage in its wake. 

I watched an Aziz Ansari (who used to be one of my favorite comedians – emphasis on used to be) put out a comedy special that was so contrite and apologetic it was almost unwatchable. The man was clearly shaken. He had been the subject of a sexual assault investigation that was basically proven to be just a date that kinda went bad. 

He didn’t rape anybody or assault anybody or harass anybody. He just went out with a girl and it didn’t go so well. That’s part of the male/female dance. It’s very hard to regulate and legislate. 

We rely on our good faith as decent human beings, and our upbringing and values, to keep the rules between men and women in force. We also rely on our relative sanity as cogent, thinking people to help us understand the difference between someone being inappropriate and someone being human. 

Unfortunately, in the heat of a “social movement” a lot of that sanity goes out the window. 

And that turns Aziz Ansari into “Aziz I’m Sorry.” And the laughs become infrequent and cautious. Humans aren’t supposed to laugh cautiously. 

Anyway …

I was wondering when or if the #metoo stuff would run its course. And when I saw Alec Baldwin direct a pretty inappropriate joke toward Angie Harmon, on Match Game, and she sorta laughed re-faced and embarrassed instead of storming out with her fists in the air, I thought to myself, “Ah…I guess it’s over, now.” 

Then 2020 happened and we all forgot about pretty much everything that had happened before it. 

But what about the remnants of #metoo? Is it still a thing? Is it still important? Is it still worth the kind of passion it once was?

I can’t (and won’t even pretend to) speak for women regarding this subject. I mainly just listen to them. But does everybody realize that Bill Cosby is out of prison, now? 

And do you know why he’s out of prison? Because in the heat of the passion to put him away, the prosecutors made some legal errors and left open some loopholes. Instead of prosecuting him with a cool head and a steady hand, they rushed in to seize the moment and surf the social wave. 

Result? Serial rapist, free. 

Does anybody care? Where are the marches? Surely everybody didn’t get rid of their pink, Pu$$y hats. Where are those?

Yesterday, Andrew Cuomo was accused by multiple women of harassment and assault. The “culture” described in their testimonies seems slimy and disgusting and sounds like the kind of thing nobody could’ve survived three years ago. Some high ranking officials have called for the man to resign, but he just kinda brushed it off and said it’s not true. 

Hey, I don’t know if any of it’s true or not. I’ve never met the man. He’s never touched my butt. He may be telling the truth. Only he and the women involved know what really happened. 

But where are the millions of voices calling for his forced removal? Where is the passion for his being cancelled? Is Hollywood going to demand its Emmy back? Are those who called themselves “Cuomosexuals” going to recant? 

Jimmy Fallon apologized to his fans for having Donald Trump on his show and “normalizing” him. Jimmy was part of that “Cuomosexual” brigade. I’ll be curious to see his apology. I’m sure it’s just around the corner? 

Buying into a notion, and I mean all the way in, requires you to follow that notion to wherever it ultimately leads. If you become a crusader against money laundering, you’d better be sure your dad isn’t an accountant for Moralto crime family. 

If you get elected to clean up the vice in the city, make sure your uncle Hershel isn’t running an escort service out of the back of the church. And if you don’t want to know, don’t campaign on it. 

A lot of the fire of the #metoo movement seems to have died down in the wake of more current politics. And I can’t help but look back and wonder which parts of of it were sincere and pure, and which parts were politically expedient. 

As of this writing I still don’t assault or harass women. I’m still not a rapist or a sexual predator. But I amconsidered by some to be a subversive voice, who has spread false and dangerous information.

It sometimes makes you wonder if there’s just a contingent of people out there looking for whatever they can latch onto to silence the voices with whom they disagree. 

The most sinister part of that possible scenario would be that there are actual victims being used as political pawns. They got a moment three years ago. They got heard. And they got believed…in some cases, without any credible proof of any wrong doing. 

Now? 

Well, as they say in show business, timing is everything. Making your sexual harassment case against a popular Democrat governor/media darling, would’ve been better received a few years ago…you know…back when it was hip. 

These days, we’re all about masks and shots and arguing about thatstuff. 

Get with it, ladies. Your emotional damage and physical abuse is clearly out of style.       

You might just have to wait for the next fad to hit, to get any justice. 

R

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JANUARY 6th …

“I would’t give a f#ck if a Russian tank was rolling down Flatbush Boulevard. I ain’t shooting nobody …”

That’s a direct quote from Chris Rock’s comedy special, from 1999. I laughed and laughed. 

He was basically talking about how he kinda loved America but would never really do anything for America. After all, black grievance joke here and America is bad punchline there, and all of that. 

Then, about two years later, right after 9/11, I saw Chris Rock on that celebrity telethon, taking calls and looking downright ashen. And when everybody stood together at the end, and sang God Bless America, he was right there with them, with his hand over his heart, singing with all the earnestness of a nine-year-old girl scout. 

As I watched him crooning out some song he probably didn’t even believe should’ve ever been written in the first place, I thought about that comedy special. And I thought about how cavalier he had been toward the country he now seemed to be clinging to with all his might. 

I thought about how easy is is to pace the stage like a tiger and talk smack and drop the mic. But when buildings start falling around you and you see not only the possibility of your own death, but of your very society’s end…well…it gets real. 

I’ve been hearing, for the last several years, about how this country was founded on sin and evil and needs to be torn down and rebuilt. I’ve been told how we need another revolution. I’ve watched people tear down the historical markers and call for a “re-set.” 

Last summer, the courthouse in my own hometown (Nashville) was burned during one of the protests. I had several friends defend the action and talk about how rioting is the language of the unheard (one of the most tortured MLK quotes of all time), etc, etc. 

I’ve watched American Olympic athletes (and entire professional sports teams and franchises) kneel in unity against the flag and the country, stating that it is a moral obligation to do this. And anyone who doesn’t do it is complicit in some form of oppression or tyranny. 

Silence is violence.  

I’ve read Facebook posts about how violence and the destruction of property is actually a righteous act in some cases. That was an actual post by someone I’ve known for decades. 

I heard actual elected officials talk about defunding law enforcement. 

I heard Madonna say she’d thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House. And I had some friends actually defend her comments. 

Well, okay. I’m going to take all of you at your word. 

Yesterday was the first hearing regarding the attack on the Capital building in Washington, DC, on January 6th. 

As of this writing, we’re still not really sure who did what. Was it Trump supporters? Was it Antifamasquerading as Trump supporters? Was it some outlier group not connected to anything?  

It doesn’t matter. 

Here’s the thing that has been rolling over and over in my mind for the past 7 months…

If you’ve ever beaten your chest and crowed about how this country needs to be torn down to its foundations and rebuilt…well, on January 6th, the wrecking ball showed up.

If you’ve ever seriously talked about how it all needs to be pulled up by the roots, there they were, with the gardening tools. 

If you’ve ranted and raved about how Congress needs a good spanking, there they were with the switch. 

If you’ve publicly called for a weakened law enforcement presence in the United States, viola…there it was.    

If you’ve called for a revolution, then January 6th is what a revolution actually looks like. They’re not pretty. And they’re not orderly. And they’re easier to call for that to actually participate in. 

As it turns out, most people don’t actually have the stomach for what they think they want. The breathless Tweets and pearl clutching Facebook posts by people who have said they want to see something like a revolution, were ironic to say the least. 

See, you can cheer on rioters and looters when it’s just an average American city (preferably far away from you). You know they’ll rebuild it. You know insurance will kick in. You know, when the smoke clears, everybody will settle down and clean up. 

But when you see the heart of the nation, the place where it all gets done, the symbol and touchtone of the very foundations of your life, under siege and in imminent danger…well…again, it gets real,real fast.  

We love to rebel against things…until they’re not there anymore. When we’re kids, we love to wish our parents would just die…until one of them actually does. Married people often wish their spouse would just go away, until they are in the throes of an actual divorce. 

Maybe it’s time to get serious about what we really want and what we really don’t want.   

When I used to write Christian Music, I would always say that I didn’t really want to hang out with the Baptists…but I sure was glad they were there. 

Maybe we can take some things away from this that can help us rebuild some basic, agreed upon principles. 

How about this one? America is good. And we don’t want to see it end. Could that be our simple, guiding North Star again?

Or here’s a novel one: we all agree that a well trained, well armed, well funded police force is essentially a good thing. 

If we can’t agree on those two principles, we’re going to see more days like January 6th. And we’re going to have to stop wringing our hands when we see it, if we are constantly calling for it. 

Maybe the truth is we actually want to see it happen…if the right people do it. 

But for those who don’t want to see it happen, how about this? Could we all take a damn minute and stop putting thousands of people in the same place? Every time I hear about this march or that march happening, my stomach tightens up. Because these things almost never end well. You put a hundred thousand people at a protest and somebody’s going to pop off. It’s just basic math. 

Everybody, everywhere, on every side of every issue, stop protesting for a hot minute and let this country catch its breath.

As far as hypocrisy goes…well, there’s almost too much of it to address. Why don’t we stow all the whataboutisms for a minute and focus on those two things I talked about?  

As far as Madonna wanting to blow up the White House goes? Well, ma’am. I don’t think you really meant that. Surely, after January 6th and its aftermath, you see how destructive something like that would be. 

As for the rest of us, let’s take a lesson from Chris Rock, put our hands back over our hearts, and sing God Bless America again. 

And let’s really mean it this time.       

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MISGIVINGS…

This post has already been “reported” for false information. So let me offer some disclaimers before you read it:

1. I am not in any way claiming or suggesting that vaccines cause Autism. I don’t know what causes Autism. Neither does the medical community. I am only suggesting that those who have experienced reactions to vaccines and/or live with children who have had the same, may have valid arguments or concerns when it comes to vaccinating themselves or their children. 

2. I am not discouraging anyone from taking a Covid vaccine. My wife and Mother-in-Law have both taken the vaccine and are very happy with their decision. I may take it as well. The below are just the thoughts and feelings I am weighing as I come to that decision. 

3. I in NO WAY discount the amazing work so many health care professionals do. Those who work in that field are among some of the best and brightest. And they have acted heroically throughout this pandemic. A few of them even saved my life. This is simply an acknowledgement that we’re all human and prone to getting it wrong occasionally. And that we’re all trying to get through this the best we can with the information we have…or don’t have. 

Having said all that, read at your own risk …  

Vaccines wrecked my life.

Well, not so much the vaccines themselves. But the discussion of them…and maybe the vaccines themselves. Who knows. 

When my wife and I brought our daughter home from China, we took her to the doctor for a full checkup. She had weird behaviors, wasn’t eating, wasn’t sleeping, wasn’t holding her head up, etc. 

A good ol’ dose of western medicine was in order. 

The doctor assured us everything was fine and we just needed to let her cry it out at night, when she wasn’t sleeping. Eventually it would all work itself out. Now, let’s get her fully vaccinated. 

My wife and I looked at each other knowingly. First, we kinda knew everything wasn’t really going to be alright. He wasn’t listening. Or we were just so sleep deprived we weren’t making any sense. 

But second, my daughter had already been fully vaccinated in China. We had the records and she still had the needle marks in her feet to prove it. 

I spoke up, “Um, doc, she had all her shots in China.”

“Yeah, but they get all the knock-offs and irregular stuff we reject, here. It’s best to just do it all again,” he said, while quickly preparing the 43 vaccinations (yes – I said 43) to give her in two separate shots. 

So, I gulped and said, “Actually, we’re going to wait on the full panel for a bit. We’d like to see her get more acclimated to her life and more in the groove before we do this. She’s only 9 months old. We have time …”

Before I could say anything else, he dropped his head and said, “Ok, I see what’s going on here. You guys are THOSE people. You’ve spent too much time on the internet and too much time listening to junk science. You either get this kid jabbed today – RIGHT NOW – or I am not your doctor anymore. I’ve had about enough of this nonsense walking into my practice …”

Before he could go any further, we had her dressed and out the door. “Okay, we’re not your patients, then,” we said, as we bolted toward the front desk to pay up and leave. 

He then wrote something (we still – 19 years later – have no idea what) on her chart that got her kicked off our insurance plan. That ONE move wrecked our financial lives for the next ten years and drove us into bankruptcy. 

Why?

Because my daughter started having to go to the ER in the back of an ambulance three times a week, with 7 and 8-minute seizures. She started having to see specialists and therapists and “experts” who couldn’t seem to figure out her particular set of problems. 

Finally, after 5 years of sleep deprivation and specialist after specialist and learning the inside of Vanderbilt like the back of my hand, and losing all my money and losing my career and losing my mind, we found out that she is missing a piece of her 15th maternal chromosome. 

We found that out by a friend pointing out things he’d seen in another child like mine. Then we got information on…YES…the internet. Then, we confirmed our suspicions with a genetics test. And it came back positive. She is missing the piece of the chromosome. 

That’s actual science. 

So, just to recap: she wasn’t EVER going to simply “cry it out” at night. Ever. She wasn’t dealing with regular baby stuff. We weren’t just sleep deprived. Something was actually, scientifically wrong with her. 

That doctor, not having all the actual information, was about to fully re-vaccinate a 9-month-old with a genetic disorder, WHO. HAD. JUST. BEEN. FULLY VACCINATED. Who later was shown to have adverse reactions to vaccinations. When she got the MMR (at 6), she reacted for a solid month so violently we have never gotten the booster. 

In other words, WE weren’t the science problem in that doctor’s office. The doctor was. 

Along the way to finally having someone – NOT A DOCTOR – finally see something nobody else was able to see, she was misdiagnosed a half dozen times. And every time she was misdiagnosed, she was mis-medicated. 

So, pardon me if I question those in the medical profession from time to time. I have lived – actually lived – the nightmare of their mistakes. So has my family. 

I believe most doctors are good people who genuinely want to help. I listen to them. I take what they have to say seriously. Then I weight it against other information and other opinions.

At the moment, there’s a full court press to get every person on Earth vaccinated against Covid 19. And I understand it. We all want to get back to normal…whatever that is. 

But those who haven’t yet gotten the vaccine might not be the ignorant, rube, Trump worshiping idiot you think they are. 

In my own case, I’ve actually had the virus. My daughter has actually hadthe virus. There were early reports that people with natural immunity only had it for a few months. Now, we’re learning that natural immunity probably lasts a lifetime. Maybe not. We’re not really sure yet. 

Why? Because we’re still learning. And that is the issue. 

Other than Kamala Harris, who said she would not receive the vaccine if Trump pushed it, nobody really cares who was responsible for getting it created. Not really. Not when it comes down to it. 

What people care about is not putting something INSIDE their bodies that has only been in trials for 8 months. That’s not denying science. That’s simply being cautious. 

I’m really sick and tired of medical and science people calling a natural, human instinct “anti science.” On one hand they will go on and on about how humans have done this certain behavior for millions of years; activating the fight or flight response because our caveman ancestors were being chased by saber tooth tigers, etc, etc, but then refuse to understand the same mechanisms at work right in front of them. 

My family is not a family of anti-vaxers. We’re not people who refuse to go to the doctor and just pray our illnesses away. 

No, we read and research and listen and think and weigh and then do more of it. We have to. 

And if you’re not at least a little skeptical about the sheer number of vaccines given to children, you’re not thinking about it. Is there a reason Autism rates are lower in Colorado and Mississippi – the two states where the MMR vaccine isn’t mandatory until age 5? I have no idea. It might be a total coincidence. 

But isn’t it worth discussing?

How many vaccines are safe in one shot? 20? 30? 70? A thousand? A hundred? 

Nobody seems to be able to give me that number. And they never have. As a society, we’ve settled on 43. Okay. Why? Do we know that number is safe?

Why did the medical community deny Thymerosol was a contributing factor in Autism – but then remove it from vaccines? Was it just the PR aspect? I really don’t know. I don’t even claim to know. 

All I claim to know is this: there are two doctors at Princeton University who didn’t believe anyone in the Asian race could even be stricken with Angelman Synrome (my daughter’s condition). Doctors. At Princeton. 

Then there’s me – a guy who didn’t graduate from college – who knows they can because I. LIVE. WITH. ONE. 

The point is simply this: we all know medicine can be inexact. We’ve all experienced it somewhere along the way. The number one killer in America, every year, is doctor error. 

And with this virus, the facts seem to keep changing. Of course they are. We haven’t seen this before. 

But you can’t brow beat people into doing what you want them to do. You have to lead them. And it helps if you do it without rolling your eyes. 

I had a bad bout of the virus. I thought I was going to die a time or two. And I never thought it was a hoax. I never laughed it off as nothing to be concerned about. Neither did Donald Trump, by the way. What he said was a “hoax” was the press reporting that he wasn’t taking it seriously. I know this because I listened to EVERY press conference he held on the virus from January 2020, until they stopped doing them. EVERY. ONE. 

CNN can’t say that. 

I wore the mask. I stayed home as much as I could. I washed my hands till they were raw. And I got the virus anyway. Because that’s how viruses work. They spread. They mutate. Then they spread again. That’s exactly what is happening right now. 

Will I get the vaccine? I’m still weighing it out and thinking about it. 

But I’ll guarantee you this: you belittling my decision-making process one way or another, isn’t going to cause me to do what you want me to do. 

I’ve already been through too much regarding health and science and the human genome to take vaccination advice from an angry Facebooker who thinks they know everything there is to know about science because they watch documentaries on Curiosity Stream. 

We don’t know everything. 

Sometimes the baby doesn’t need to cry it out. Sometimes it actually IS good to wait before you vaccinate. Sometimes, maybe it’s not a bad thing to give people the benefit of the doubt regarding their own health choices. 

And then, if they want to take the shot, they will. And if they don’t want to, they won’t. And they will have to live (or die) with the consequences of whatever they decide to do. 

Just don’t assume people are stupid and uniformed simply because they have questions.

It has been my experience that doctors who do that are often the ones who end up being wrong…and maybe about to ruin your life.  

      

R  

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