27 February 2009
How many Matthew Shepherds will it take before this country wakes up to a major problem that still exists, one that has somewhat supplanted racism and anti-feminism—homophobia and its physical manifestation, hate crimes? Doesn’t Peoria have enough problems with rampant gang activity without turning blind eyes to homophobic hate crimes? Why are children in Peoria being castigated by their teachers and principals merely because they are being reared by a gay man? Why is that gay man, who served Peoria’s public for many years, unable to walk down the street, go shopping, or go for entertainment with his children without being accosted by bigots (“good” Christians, obviously) or threatened with or actually being on the receiving end of violence? Fie, Peoria, fie! Matthew Shepherd and other victims of homophobia are turning over in their graves, appalled by Peoria’s inaction and ignoring the problem. The violence and hatred MUST END, and you, Peoria need to take steps to end them.
08 June 2008
“When I got him ten years ago, I could hold him in my hand. Last week the vet said he weighed sixteen pounds and needed to go on a diet.” All that seems unimportant now as he lies quietly, seemingly asleep, on his favorite blanket; his heart no longer beats; his pained mewls no longer pierce my heart. His companion, Timon, sits at his side, his paw placed gently on his chest as if he knows his friend will no longer romp and play with him or explore the back yard with him.
How does a parent tell a young child—twins in this case—that one of their pets is dead? They saw his injured body earlier in the week, but he seemed to be rallying towards Friday. Does one let them see the still body and let them help bury him? Or does one bury his ten-year friend alone and show pictures of his life?
Rest in peace, dear Pumba; I wish I’d met you in person before you were taken from us. My task now is to console my beloved, who has lost to death yet another loved one.
30 August 2007
I am 62 years old. Three months ago I moved into a supposedly quiet apartment so I wouldn’t have to drive 45 miles twice a day to and from a new job in Bucyrus, Ohio, a small city north of Columbus. From the first night I stayed at the apartment, the woman, Tami Garverich, and her daughters and boyfriend/ex/husband in the apartment above me have waged an relentless campaign of hostility, assault, and elder abuse: she does laundry after 10 PM and again at 5:30 AM; likewise she runs the vacuum at unreasonable hours; and the whole bunch of them stomp about like a herd of elephants. Furthermore, they rush to be directly above me no matter what room I move to, and every telephone conversation I make is eavesdropped upon when any of them are there. When I spoke to the landlord about the situation, he acted as though making noise at any time of the night is acceptable behavior in an apartment setting; in fact, his lease contains no clauses relating to afterhours laundry, vacuuming, or other noisy activities.
I work in a medical office; I am expected to be alert and pleasant to patients. How can a person who is constantly assaulted with the above behavior be expected to meet those requirements? This woman works in the local hospital. If she can treat one elder in the manner she treats me, how can she be trusted to be kind and understanding of the many other elders with whom she comes in contact in her work?
Is it unreasonable to expect quiet after 10PM so one can get a good 8 hours sleep? I have notified the hospital CEO that I intend to file formal charges of elder abuse against this woman. If she loses custody of her children, TOO BAD; she has pushed me too far and now she must pay the consequences of her unacceptable behavior.
Reasonable, constructive criticism is welcomed.
02 May 2007
01 February 2007
…the alumni of a major Ohio university who made internship a living hell for anyone not one of their classmates;
…the radiology group in New Jersey that thought residencies are self-taught, and when someone protested such educational nonsense, blackballed him from completing his training there or anywhere in the country and passed allegations of mental illness throughout the medical grapevine;
…the hospital administrators in Cleveland who seriously believed one person could do the job of 7 in directing their clinic, breached his contract, and then covered their tracks by making allegations (despite exoneration by several psychiatrists) of “paranoid schizophrenia” to recruiters locally and nationwide;
…the department head in a Los Angeles suburb hospital who lied to administrators concerning a newcomer’s onset date for covering the hospital; that hospital’s practice of using family physicians merely to route cases to their specialists rather than letting the PCP do the job he was trained for; that hospital’s failure to provide all staff with influenza vaccine; that hospital’s terminating someone for being ill with influenza for a week;
…medical employers who give office managers more authority than their office physicians;
…the medical group in a Los Angeles suburb (now spreading nationwide) that spent more on the salt-water aquarium in its home office than it did for equipment or adequate heat in one of its new offices in the winter;
…medical groups that treat patients like cattle to be herded through the office as quickly as possible (and expect everyone working there to do likewise);
…medical groups that allow secretaries and technicians to sabotage a physician’s career by directing patients away from him to the other doc in the office and that allow secretaries to practice medicine without a license (giving approval for medication renewals without the physician’s stated or written consent);
…supervisors/administrators who try to force people into retirement through underhanded methods—telling patients the doctor they like has “decided to go elsewhere”, hiring a replacement straight out of training, and then telling the doc his contract isn’t being renewed;
…patients and administrators who use religion to determine who may work for them;
…administrators who continue to poison any new work opportunities for someone they have released by passing innuendoes to potential new employers;
…people who go to church but learn nothing about Christian behavior; forgiveness of sins is NOT carte blanche to go out and do whatever evil you want because that behavior will be forgiven the next visit to church;
…people intolerant of other “lifestyles”—whether different religion, different age, different choice in partner, different political beliefs;
…people who think reading the Torah or the Quran or studying the Hebrew or Arabic language makes one Jewish or Muslim and use that as a basis for discriminating against him; (does standing in a garage make one an automobile?)
…banks that seem bent on ruining unemployed people financially;
…oil companies that gouge the public with ridiculous prices simply because they can get away with it under the current administration;
…people who fail to recognize that depression or other mental conditions are “diseases” and should be treated as such, no different than someone with diabetes or hypertension (making fun of people with any sort of mental illness is no less heinous than abusing children, women, or the elderly; making fun of disfigured people, or the like);
…myself for having put too much trust in people who claimed to be my friend or claimed to love me…
01 January 2007
I recently posted a controversial blog on MySpace (concerning “blue laws” and liquor sales on Sunday). Basically I feel so-called blue laws should be struck down as unconstitutional: first, they do not observe the separation of church and state laid down by the Constitution; second, they assume that all people in this country celebrate the sabbath on Sunday; as we all know Seventh Day Adventists and Jews honor a different day as the sabbath. Consequently, we should either apply the blue laws to every day considered the sabbath by any religion, or we should abolish the laws as discriminatory. Furthermore, if retained, these laws should apply equally to all alcoholic beverages.
What precipitated this blog? I rose early Sunday morning (05:00) to start preparations for a meal later New Year’s Eve; since I was going to make boeuf bourgignon, I wanted fresh produce and a nice, dry red wine. When I checked my small supply of wine, I found I had only sweet, dessert white wines; so I intended to buy a bottle of red at the supermarket. When I was checking out at the register, however, the clerk in charge of the self checkout stations walked over and brusquely snatched away the bottle of wine and snarled, “We can’t sell you that on Sunday.” She then informed me that beer could be sold early in the day on Sunday, but wine was only available after 13:00 [1:00 PM]. She tried to call the manager, but no one responded to her page. Then she walked back to the wine section to check for a posting of the regulations, but having found none, returned as clueless as before. A man then approached her, who also stated no wine before its time, but the times he gave were different than the ones she had given. (The issue of liquor sales on Sunday was one of the issues voted on in the recent November election, but I had not checked to see what the outcome was since I rarely buy liquor except as a drink in a restaurant.) SO I left the store rather peeved since I’d be unable to start the beef burgundy until much later in the day. At home I called another chain store to get their manager’s input on the matter. She gave me yet another set of times. As I have argued above, if the sale of alcoholic beverages is to be restricted on Sundays, the restriction should apply to ALL alcoholic beverages. Why is beer at 06:00 OK but wine not?
What does all this have to do with MySpace? Apparently someone at MySpace took umbrage at the blog, for my page has been inaccessible—supposedly for database upgrading, but my page has had similar “maintenance” twice in the past two weeks, and none of thousands of friends have experienced the same maintenance. Further, maintenance usually lasts only a couple hours; this episode has been going on for over 24 hours. SO the tech people at MySpace party out New Year’s Eve and Day while I am left unable to communicate with the hundreds of friends I’ve met through that MySpace page. What has happened to ethics in this country? Was 9/11 the end of freedom of speech in this country?
A new year; a fresh start—supposedly: To me it seems the coverage of the Pasadena Rose Parade gets worse each year. In the past there were truly close-up shots of the floats and detailed descriptions of the designs and the flowers and plants used to decorate; now there are so many floats and bands that they seem to be in a race to get to the end of the parade route.
One channel advertised its coverage as “commercial-free”. Apparently their definition of “commercial-free” is quite different from mine: how do overlaid banners for Lincoln automobiles and MasterCard as well as picture-in-picture ads for their upcoming TV show NOT constitute commercials? If by “commercial-free” they meant “without commercial breaks”, they should have advertised it that way.
Interesting that the TV show they were advertising is based on living “green”. What could be less green than spending millions on float construction, millions more on flowers and other living materials (including tons of rice, coconut, fruits, etc. which might be better used to feed starving people around the world)? Granted, in the past I have enjoyed and loved the Rose Parade, but as I have become more and more ecologically aware, I am increasingly dismayed by the oxymoronic juxtaposition of displays of excess in a world full of poverty and hunger.