In the summer of 1972 or 1973 when I was 11 or 12 years old, I was sexually assaulted by a gang of boys, which included my five brothers, cousins, and a boy unrelated to me. I was with my family (my parents, five brothers, aunt, uncle, and cousins) in Maine, staying at a rustic vacation retreat owned by friends of my parents. Actually, the owners weren’t exactly friends of my parents. My father worked with a man named Kearney at Paine Webber whose wife’s family owned the vacation property in Maine. The Kearney’s had several children including a son named Dave who were roughly the same age as us so vacationing together seemed like a good idea. Read more
Over the past week, the people of our nation have been mesmerized by the allegations against Brett Kavanaugh, particularly those by Dr. Christine Blasey-Ford who claims Kavanaugh assaulted her in the summer of 1982 when she was 15 years old and Kavanaugh was 17.
The Republicans claim the Democrats are using Ford as a political tool to prevent a conservative federal judge from being appointed to the nation’s highest court while the Democrats claim the Republicans – primarily white, middle-aged or old men – are not giving enough consideration to a woman’s allegations of sexual assault, which brings us not to a discussion of who – Ford or Kavanaugh – is more believable (by most accounts both individuals were believable) but to a perverse idea that many people – and particularly Republicans supporting Kavanaugh’s nomination – don’t verbalize: Ford’s allegations – although believable – should not prevent a white, middle-aged man who represents their ideals from being appointed to a prominent lifelong post on the nation’s Supreme Court. So the question becomes why? The reason appears to be related to the extent of the assault. Read more
Presidential libraries are relatively new to the United States with the first one established in 1941 for Franklin Roosevelt when he proposed to leave his presidential papers to the public (instead of keeping them as private property).
The people of the United States generally bought into the idea that the sitting President’s documents, artifacts, and gifts of state were public property so presidential libraries have been built for every president since Herbert Hoover (his being opened in 1962 when he was 88 years old). Read more
Today marks 17 years since 9-11 and yet the wounds continue to feel raw, especially for the people who lost family and friends that day. Nearly 3,000 people were killed that day, the majority of whom were adults but there were also eight very young children (ages 2 – 11) who perished when the planes they were on crashed. Had those children lived, they would be 19-28 years old today, in the prime of their lives.
American Airlines Flight 77 departed Washington, DC for Los Angeles but was hijacked and crashed into the Pentagon. On board, were five children: Read more
The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) is a non-profit 501 (c) (4) organization that fights tirelessly for our second amendment rights. Whether or not you believe the second amendment refers to “militia” or “the people” has always been controversial but is even more so in the wake of the near weekly occurrence of mass shootings in this country. People are speaking out for gun control because quite frankly, there are too many guns and assault weapons in the hands of the wrong people, and too many people are dying. Read more
A few years ago (2016) right after Hillary Clinton won the democratic primaries, I was at a cocktail party where the host was Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney of New York. She was there supporting several democratic candidates running for office in New York but opened up a question and answer session where we could presumably ask whatever we wanted. Read more
Earlier this month a story was circulating about an orca whale who gave birth to a calf only to have it die about 30 minutes later. The mother whale carried the baby calf on her nose for weeks while she swam miles and miles along the Pacific Ocean off the northwest coast of Canada in what most animal behaviorists say was a form of grieving. That the calf was the first one born since 2015 (the whales have been tracked because of their dwindling population) makes the loss more heartbreaking for environmentalists who are trying to save the mammals from extinction by repopulating the seas, which have been depleted, with salmon. Read more
The Asheville dining scene for plant-based or vegan eaters has never been better. Years ago, I could write about the vegan options in virtually any town or city in one or two posts but not for Asheville, a city known for tolerance, compassion, and a deep respect for personal choice. It’s not that Ashevillians eat less animal products then the rest of the population (they probably eat just as much, if not more); the vegan-friendly approach has more to do with tolerance, accommodation, and a desire to please the people sitting at a table in their restaurant.
This is the fourth installment of vegan dining options in Asheville and there’s still two to go. Enjoy. Read on and taste what Asheville has to offer in plant-based dining on your next visit. Read more
Switching from a Standard American Diet (SAD) and/or a diet high in animal products – where milk, butter, cheese, meat, chicken, poultry, pork, fish, processed drinks and foods high in added fats and sugar are center stage – to a plant-based diet is difficult because if you’re not used to eating a diet high in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds, then the food won’t seem satisfying or tasty at first (but within a few weeks, your taste buds adjust). So, the best way to make a successful transition is to make small changes that include the following tips: Read more
I have a love-hate relationship with the Wall Street Journal. One of the most respected newspapers in the world, the Wall Street Journal was my go-to newspaper for decades but since Murdoch bought the paper in 2007, I’ve reluctantly embraced it.
The news and personal lifestyle information is always interesting while the editorials often frustrate me with their conservative, big brother take on politics and culture. But not yesterday when an editorial entitled Food Stamps Shouldn’t Pay for Junk by Moby was printed. Read more