Just Stop It.

Now, take that how you want. If it made you flinch, get mad at me, or roil your conscience, you need to read this and then change your ways. 

Let’s start with those of you who hate people because of their race. In this category I include those of you who post memes on social media stereotyping “others” and that glorify violence against people who don’t look like you.

Yes, you. The person who’s squirming right now. You have let evil into your heart. You relish the thought of an old man, or an old woman, who doesn’t look like you getting knocked in the head with a rock thrown/held by someone that looks like you. 

You also condemn people in legal cases where you quite literally know nothing beyond the skin color of the people involved. If that is how you evaluate justice, just grab a flatbed truck, build a mobile execution platform, round up a couple of hundred followers, and start hanging everyone who doesn’t look like you. Maybe make everyone wear color coded cloth patches on their lapels so we know what kind of justice they are to be accorded. Saves a lot of time. Perhaps, and I know this will save money, just round them up and put them in camps to be dealt with later. Sounds extreme, eh? Some of you are already truck shopping as I write this post.

If someone disagrees with your political views, storm their house at night, terrorize them in restaurants, and make them think like you do. Burn their business because it’s nearby when your temper boils over. It works every time. If they resist, burn them out and kill them in the street – or send them to that camp we discussed above.

Cops. All of them, including the black ones, Asian ones, and any other variety, are evil racists who do nothing but oppress people based on their skin color. As one genius put it, “They might be skinfolk, but they aren’t kinfolk.”   But let’s do away with them. Perhaps just give ANTIFA the weapons and radios – I’m sure they’ll be fair. Who needs all that training?

The point, if you’ve made it this far, is that you are a total loser if you base your decisions on social media and the popular press. Lies abound. Read some other sources, watch some other videos, and for the love of man, think independently. 

The old saying that there are two sides to every story is wrong as well. There are an almost infinite number of sides. But you have to weigh them all out, take the evidence – not the rumors you saw on Facebook – and render judgment. That’s what the courts are for. Not your mob of dismayed friends and angry neighbors. 

Protest is fine. It’s good. I’m even cool with protests where people legally carry firearms. But the minute you pick up a rock, or a Molotov cocktail, or aim that weapon at someone, you cease to protest and begin to riot. The old saying “Play stupid games, win stupid prizes” applies from that moment forward. 

Start applying common sense today. If you see something that looks like an outrage in “the news”, check the date. This gets tedious for me, but it’s almost always already too late when I see it. Before you post something, check the facts and the date. I’ve gone ballistic over stuff that I was wrong on, but I then remove the item and post an apology – had to do it twice in the last ten years. Not bad given the time constraints. Now I just don’t post that stuff until I’m totally sure of the truth as it is available.

But if you insist on posting the picture of the 93 year old woman who was shot at 36 times by the police, at least have the decency to include the fact that it happened in 2006, and all the police involved went to prison. Or that the hotel that refused to serve military and veterans found the employee, fired them, retrained their staff, and apologized years ago. 

Try some of that Bible stuff so many of you espouse. Love your fellow man like yourself. Quit trash-talking people over small things. Find the truth before you take up a banner. Actually read the case files. Don’t trust the press to think for you. Do believe your own eyes when you do the research. Most of all, don’t stand in front of someone and scream at them through a bullhorn. Try talking calmly and rationally. It’s an awesome thing to actually work out communications and come to an agreement.

And, finally, pray. Stop and pray before you open your mouth. It’s amazing how little escapes mine after I pray. I need to do it more. This post is an example: I will read it again, and then pray before posting it. 

Now, go out there and be decent. Pray for law enforcement. Even if you don’t like them, pray for them to do their jobs well: it benefits us all. 

To my brothers and sisters in blue, I am praying for you and wish you well. I know you are not what the media portrays you to be. 

Be nice to each other.

 

So, There I Was Recording An Audio Book…

And all the hard work paid off massively.

As some of you know, I’ve been doing audio books for years. First as a volunteer for the blind, and then commercially. 

If you didn’t know that, no fault but my own: I need to talk about it more.

I’m currently working on the audio book of the COVID flash fiction we did over the first three months of the lockdown. I’m doing total production work on it for only the second time, and have put all of my lessons learned to very good use. The sound quality is silky, the acting my best yet, and since the stories are really good, it’s going to be a great audio book to accompany the Kindle and paperback versions. I hope you will strongly consider giving it as a Christmas present to at least five different people. 

At any who, while I’ve been working on it, I was contacted by an organization I volunteer with, and the woman who runs the outfit. Mind you, she’s got a great voice and could do her own book, but she asked me to do the audio book version of a series of training manuals they are putting out starting in December. It will be about 7 different books. And the audience is out there for these manuals. I can’t disclose the details, but the audience is likely to want audio versions to listen to while they work. 

I’m very proud of being asked to do this series. It not only means a solid income stream for some time to come, but I get to help people by presenting the material in a coherent manner. I get to do what I love, and do it for people I love. 

Now, why me would be the question. The answer is that when you put in hundreds of hours in the work of perfecting a craft, and do things the right way, you go from unknown to sought. And having paid the dues, it’s awfully nice to get asked. 

More details to come when it’s officially okay to disclose the project. But in the meantime, I have a lot of books to record. 

Hope your day is going great. Mine certainly is.

Gotcha Anniversary

This past week marked the anniversary of Chewy coming to live with us. What a blessing he has been.

That we started with a dog nobody could approach (except his fosters) and who was uninterested in anyone who visited him except us is hard to believe. He just didn’t bond with people. Fortunately, for both sides, we had a lot of experience with that kind of thing having been Stormy’s family for six years.

He must have sensed our willingness to accept him on that last foster visit. I had set it in my mind that he had to approach me without being coaxed with food if we were to adopt him. I needed a dog in my life who felt safe with me. Kip needed it as well, but she’d been in a closer relationship with Stormy than I had been. Stormy always seemed to feel safe with her, but not with me. 

At any rate, Chewy came to get his nose rubbed on that potentially last visit. My heart swelled, and we had a new dog – once we could get the yard ready. 

Weeks went by, and finally the house was ready for him. That first day we ran through 17.5 pounds of dog treats trying to bribe him into the house. Well, it seemed like it. But he was reluctant to come inside. 

A year later? He hops on the bed for a morning snuggle before the day starts. He sleeps next to me while I work in my home office – often so close that I can’t move an inch without sitting on his paws or tail. 

Last week I had really bad migraines and vertigo. Not a great combination. I felt rotten all week. Chewy realized this, and he spent the nights sleeping next to me, offering me comfort and calm. His heart is huge now that he’s one of our family. He can’t get enough love, nor give more than we can handle. He overflows with joy.

Mind you, he still dislikes strangers, including all creatures great and small. Not an aggressive thing, but he really doesn’t want to deal with anyone but the two of us. He just doesn’t come near them, and we respect his wishes. We tried really hard to overcome this, but he’s right out front about not wishing to expand his social circle.

It’s been a great year. We look forward to many more. God has been good to all three of us. 

 

Peaceful Protest My Rear

Don’t buy the bull the press is feeding about peaceful protest. Don’t let them convince you it was all just a peaceful collection of fine people. 

Instead, drive around my home town – or any major city – and count the boarded up windows. 

I stood on my lawn two nights in a row and smelled my city burning around me.

Count the flame-scorched walls and collapsed buildings.

Count the graffiti on the front of businesses that will never open again. 

Ask yourself if you’d go to a “protest” or would you fear for your life?

Ask the residents of Washington D.C., Portland, and other cities where mobs of rioters with lasers, weapons, and rocks scream through residential neighborhoods at night waking people up, and threatening to kill them and burn their houses down when they come out of their own homes.

Count the senseless beatings of people pulled from their cars and beaten.

Count the people assaulted, beaten, and left for dead because they defended their business or home.

Count the man murdered in Portland for wearing a Prayer for Peace hat.

Count the hundreds of police officers injured by flying bottles of frozen water and concrete, rocks, glass bottles, and Molotov Cocktails. You know, Molotov Cocktails that burn a person alive.

Count the police who have lost their hearing forever because an industrial/commercial firework was fired at them and detonated five feet away.

Don’t believe the press, believe your eyes. Take a look at your city, or mine, and see the thousands of lives destroyed by rioters and looters. 

Those were not, and are not, peaceful protests. They are riots and insurrection. The people who honestly protested a perceived injustice were left behind by the looters, arsonists, and sociopaths in the first hours.

And this must not be tolerated.