Thursday, July 24, 2008

Dear Elaine Donnelly --- From the bottom of this Seething Mom’s heart --- Thank you!

You spared me from the seething rage that usually gets the best of me when I listen to the unhinged, barely-coherent homophobic drivel that people like you try to pass off as intelligent, fact-based dialogue. In fact, I have got to thank you for the best laugh I’ve had in a very long time. Not only did you make our case for why Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is a ridiculous policy put in place simply to quell the Dobson Nutcase crowd’s heeby-jeebies about anyone different from them, but you did it better than any of the Generals or Purple Heart Veterans lined up to testify against the policy could have.

Hey, do you think maybe you could find the time to testify before Congress about the repeal of DOMA, the Defense Of Marriage Act, when you are done making the case for why Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell should be shit-canned?

Think about it. We could really use your help:

Don't ask, don't tell. And, whatever you do, don't ask Elaine Donnelly to tell you what she thinks about gays in the military.

The House Armed Services personnel subcommittee made just such a miscalculation yesterday. Holding the first hearing in 15 years on the "don't ask, don't tell" policy, lawmakers invited a quartet of veterans to testify on the subject and also extended an invitation to Donnelly, who has been working for years to protect our fighting forces from the malign influence of women.

Donnelly treated the panel to an extraordinary exhibition of rage. She warned of "transgenders in the military." She warned that lesbians would take pictures of people in the shower. She spoke ominously of gays spreading "HIV positivity" through the ranks.

"We're talking about real consequences for real people," Donnelly proclaimed. Her written statement added warnings about "inappropriate passive/aggressive actions common in the homosexual community," the prospects of "forcible sodomy" and "exotic forms of sexual expression," and the case of "a group of black lesbians who decided to gang-assault" a fellow soldier.


Inadvertently, Donnelly achieved the opposite of her intended effect. Though there's no expectation that Congress will repeal "don't ask, don't tell" and allow gays to serve openly in the military, the display had the effect of increasing bipartisan sympathy for the cause.

But don’t be too glum Ms. Donnelly, I am just sure you’ll get a whole lot more respect from the McCain campaign than you got yesterday before Congress. They won’t laugh at you or use words like “shocked”, “embarrassed”, or “scurrilous” to describe their reactions and your testimony. In fact you’ll find an ally in Senator McCain – he might be one of the only people left who actually agrees with you.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A few quick questions for Senator McCain

In a response to a reporter’s question about gay adoption the other day you said:

“I think that we’ve proven that both parents are important in the success of a family so, no, I don’t believe in gay adoption.”

But then later you clarified your response by saying:

"… that [your] position on gay adoption is that it is a state issue. ...”

Which brings me around to asking two questions:

1. So if you think that it takes two parents, a mom and a dad, to have a successful family, what does that say about you? You were in such a hurry to marry your second wife that you didn’t even wait until you were legally divorced from your first wife before getting married again. Does that mean the status of your first family went from successful to unsuccessful once you dumped your first wife and 3 children?

2. And if you believe that adoption is a state issue, then why are you sticking your nose into California’s Gay Marriage Amendment battle? Shouldn’t you leave that to the state of California to decide?

And while we are on the subject of hypocrites who should probably keep their mouths shut on certain subjects, may I suggest another topic that you should probably run like hell from? I really don’t think I’d say anything about the Sanctity of Marriage OR Family Values if I were you. Dumping one wife and family to marry a new wife and start another family really doesn’t sit well with Americans who actually live Marriage and Family Values every day. When you speak up on these issues, you make yourself as big a laughing stock as David Vitter and Larry Craig. And you don’t want that, do you?

Just sayin…


Sunday, July 13, 2008

I guess it was bound to happen, Barack Obama just broke this mom’s heart

As I have mentioned before, I am extremely happy that we finally have a Democratic nominee and I could not be happier that it is Senator Obama. After almost 8 suffocating years of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, Barack Obama is such a breath of fresh air for this oxygen-starved seething momma.

I can hardly contain myself I am so excited for the elections to get here. And when I envision the current Administration and all of its cronies packing their belongings and moving out of our White House and back into the relative oblivion and anonymity from whence they came, I am overcome with an uncontrollable joy, the likes of which I have not felt since my wedding day and the birth of my children.

I have so much hope that the deep rifts that this current administration created and fostered will eventually go away. I have so much hope that the kind of divisive and hateful politics that this administration used to further their own political agendas will soon be an ugly memory and a lesson on how not to govern for future generations. I have so much hope that words like Christian Values, Family Values, Sanctity of Marriage, etc. will go back to having definitions that don’t reflexively cause wince-inducing pain for the people against whom they were used as weapons. I have so much hope that finding the answers to the enormous problems our country is facing will finally take precedence over partisan infighting and political one-upmanship that has so dominated our politics these past 8 years. And finally, I have so much hope that our new President, Barack Obama, will be the one who can foster and nurture the kind of environment that makes people want to come together and put the greater good of this country before the greater good of their Party or themselves.

And so it was with a very heavy heart that I listened to Barack Obama talk about not only continuing George Bush’s Faith-Based initiatives, but expanding them. In fact it was for me a very devastating moment. And yes, I know, he went to great lengths to assure us that as someone who used to teach constitutional law, [he] believes deeply in the separation of church and state, but [he doesn’t] believe this partnership will endanger that idea. And yes, I also know that it was inevitable that once the primaries were over that Senator Obama was going to move more to the middle – and I am ok with that. But good Lord in Heaven, could he not have left this particular idea on the chopping block. I simply cannot wrap my mind around my tax dollars continuing to go to churches, no matter how good the causes they will support are, no matter how many guidelines and rules are put in place, and no matter how many assurances we get that there will still be a clear separation between Church and State. I just do not believe that this is a program worthy of saving.

Call me jaded, call me evil, call me whatever you want, but I will NEVER be comfortable with my tax dollars going to the very institutions that 1) have deemed one of my beloved children an evil, sinful pariah 2) have worked harder to enshrine his second-class citizenship into law than to alleviate hunger or poverty, and 3) have done more to keep hatred and homophobia alive than any other organized institution in this country 4) have continued to teach that this is a choice or a lifestyle 5) and have been one of the biggest reasons parents continue to throw their children out like trash.

Sorry, I cannot and will not come to terms with this. No way in hell. There is just no making this program acceptable in this mother’s eyes. No way.

Will I still support Barack Obama? Yes. John McCain is simply more of the same nightmare I’ve been waiting so long to wake up from. But will I support Barack Obama with the same kind of hope and enthusiasm I did before? I’m not sure if I can. And that breaks my heart. I kinda liked feeling hopeful again…


A look into the intellectually dull minds of some of our Arizona School officials

Forgive the lack of posting. I’m in a bad funk right now. And any semblance of rational posting is almost impossible when all I want to do is scream and pull my hair out. And of course a couple of articles in this morning’s paper did not help my pitiful mood one iota. In fact these articles are the straws that broke the camel’s back and pushed me over the edge.

So what made me spit a very good gulp of coffee across the table and cause my hand to involuntarily fly to my mouth to stifle a blood-curdling scream?

Well the first offending article (and probably the worst) was about a Safford Middle School vice principal who ordered the strip search of a 13-year-old eighth-grade girl who was also an honor student based solely on the word of another student that she was passing out prescription-strength Ibuprofen pills:

The school has a zero-tolerance policy toward prescription drugs on campus.

Redding denied providing the pills to a classmate and was escorted by a female administrative assistant to the nurse's office. She and the nurse, also female, ordered her to strip to her underwear, move her bra to the side and pull her underwear out, exposing her breasts and pelvic area.

No pills were found.

Now I do not know this little girl or her family, but I can tell you this, if that had been my daughter, there would have been blood spilled --- and it would NOT have contained any Seething Family DNA.

In what damn universe did these idiots think this was an appropriate response to the problem? Zero Tolerance does not mean these idiots have carte blanche to do whatever they want to a 13 year old girl. My God, I am completely dumbfounded at the total inability of these people to see that there is no one-size-fits-all policy for every problem that arises. It is like these people have completely lost all common sense or ability to think without some kind of “in ten words or less, black and white rule”.

I give this little girl and her family a lot of credit. I feel an amazing sense of violation for them. I cannot imagine the strength it took to take this through the court system and relive it each time that little girl was forced to re-tell her story, but I am grateful they did. And I admire the fact that they didn’t do what I know I would have done if someone had violated my daughter that way.

My God, have we become that stupid a society that we think we can have black and white policies that are going to neatly address what are mostly gray issues that confront us in daily life? This is so indicative of the way we as a society seem to approach problem-solving these days and it simply does not work.

That strip-search would have destroyed my daughter when she was 13. In fact that strip-search would destroy my daughter now and she is 20. These school officials should be counting their blessings that it wasn’t my daughter that they did this to. Taking this through the courts to get justice would not even have occurred to me. In fact I shudder to think what I would have done because spending years in the court system to get justice would not have cut it. Oh, and just for the record:

… judges said officials violated Savana Redding's Fourth Amendment right “to be free from unreasonable search and seizure” and called the search in 2003 “grossly intrusive.”

“Grossly intrusive”? No f*cking kidding!