The world’s greatest statesman, Nelson Mandela, died. Rest in peace Mr President.
You know? I was just sitting here today; thinking about everything and I mean everything that I have written and do write about.
It occurred to me that when I began writing, I had a goal; a mission.
It was to expose the lies that our government tells us and to encourage the rich to pay more taxes. A pretty modest goal; I think.
As much as I have tried to fulfill that goal; it has become clear to me that what I once thought a modest goal; was in fact; a huge over reach.
It didn’t take very long or very much energy to find out that the ways our government lies to us are so many that it would take the rest of my life and many more to even attempt to detail them.
As far as the rich paying more taxes? Well that truly did turn out to be a modest goal. Turns out that while it is true that the wealthy pay little to no taxes on much of their money; and the poor and middle class pay the bulk of the taxes because they are the ones affected by the various fees and sales taxes and payroll taxes etc.; this is a small problem and one that would be solved automatically if the rest of our problems solved. Even if the biggest few of our problems could be solved.
Number one; biggest problem we have today? Racism. No doubt.
Some people have asked me why I like Black people so much?
I say it’s cause they got good weed; good attitude; Reggae; the long-suffering of a saint; and have been shafted from the get-go; and need all the support they can get from those of us Caucasians; Whites; who are able to see their situation as it really is.
The truth is that I don’t love Black people so much and I don’t like people because they are black. I like people because they are people; black; white or whatever. Just because you are black; doesn’t make me feel obligated to like you. Neither does being white or any other color. I can dislike you with the best of them if I think you’re an asshole. So I guess I do discriminate;…against Assholes.
You know; you can’t take something like skin-tone with any seriousness. The very acknowledgement that you can detect it is an insult to us all. Because knowing it is of no; repeat that; NO value.
But what isn’t ok is for anyone to assume what color he is; based on his actions.
One is racism; the other a good report.
Being anti-racist or non-racist is a much maligned and oft misunderstood stance to take.
I have been accused of everything from ass-kissing to hidden sexual tastes based on skin-tone. My responses have often been less than polite but in my better; less angry moments I have managed to explain that I fail to understand what these folks believe to be my motive for the ass-kissing; unless it has to do with my supposed sexual proclivity which; I have explained is non-existent. Not that I have anything against Black women or Yellow women; or Red women. I dig the rainbow but I am a married man; married to a white woman who I am very much in Love with and who is also a non-racist sort of chick and I take my vowels very seriously for reasons which are partly biblical in origin but primarily about human dignity, respect, self-respect, love, and a sincere desire to avoid doing more damage than I absolutely must as I travel through this life. My failures to date are enough for my ability to carry their guilt and I try to be very careful about what I put out into the universe.
Let’s face the facts. Let’s not pretend to be blind or deaf or stupid.
Let us admit that we are at least semi-intelligent people who are able to say what we see; who will not ignore the nose on our face or say “What’s the Buzz?” when we hear the cries of our brothers.
Think of what your country would be like if there was no racism. Think of all the problems, violence, hatred and grief could be saved. Think of all we could do if instead of battling each other; we could work together free of those destructive forces that hold us back now.
Hard isn’t it? It is hard. It is hard because we as a nation have been programmed to hate each other. It’s everywhere. Giving in to it is so much easier than fighting it. If we are to escape racism; we must seek knowledge ourselves because the schools; the courts; the military; and the rest of the institutions of our society are woefully unenthusiastic and the government way less than zealous at seeking the truth and peace between us and us.
So when I see a crime; a person being beaten; when I hear the cries of children; not abstract children of a proverbial nature but the cries of real children who live around the corner from me or go to school with my kids or appear in TV videos of brutal attacks around the world; I have discovered that I feel that I must speak out. I must tell the truth.
The truth is usually not as hard to identify as you have been led to believe.
You are not as inept and stupid as you have been led to believe.
If we are standing before a great hole in the ground and I tell you not to jump and someone else says it’s ok to jump; you know the truth; you have the prior knowledge to sort it out and figure which one is telling the truth.
Well you can do the same thing when you are confronted with other issues and problems; if; you don’t allow your ego; your vanity; to get in your eyes and ears. If you can decide to stand up; a person of Integrity. Sadly, not all can.
What I discovered when I took a long look into the abyss is that I can’t live with myself if I don’t speak out and I can’t stand to see the suffering of people especially but not exclusively children; of any color you care to name.
It hurts me. I am no longer ashamed to say that many of the atrocities I see and hear of bring me to tears of sadness and frustration. I don’t understand how they don’t have the same effect on everyone.
One thing that Clinical Depression does for you instead of to you is to give you the ability for introspection. What the end of that will be is determined by the severity of your depression, the treatment you receive and what you decide to do with it when you can do something. Confusing? You should live through it and figure this shit out for yourself.
I figured out a whole bunch of shit. Much of it; enough to send you back into the fucking abyss by itself.
But after my last sojourn there, I became convinced that I was wasting what time I have left on this Earth in redundancy.
My next post will not be disconnected from this subject. It will deal with racism also.
And there’s a movie for those who prefer a more passive learning experience.
Sadly, we are not alone among nations when it comes to being racist. We should be the first to actually address the problem in a way that will work. This though, can only happen when we want it. We can have anything if we really want it enough; or rather if enough of us really want it.
Reblogged from: Angryman! Why You Always Talkin’ About Racism?.
it was only one hour ago
it was all so different then
there’s nothing yet has really sunk in
looks like it always did
this flesh and bone
it’s just the way that you would tied in
now there’s no-one home
i grieve for you
you leave me
‘so hard to move on
still loving what’s gone
they say life carries on
carries on and on and on and on
the news that truly shocks is the empty empty page
while the final rattle rocks its empty empty cage
and i can’t handle this
i grieve for you
you leave me
let it out and move on
missing what’s gone
they say life carries on
they say life carries on and on and on
life carries on
in the people i meet
in everyone that’s out on the street
in all the dogs and cats
in the flies and rats
in the rot and the rust
in the ashes and the dust
life carries on and on and on and on
life carries on and on and on
it’s just the car that we ride in
a home we reside in
the face that we hide in
the way we are tied in
and life carries on and on and on and on
life carries on and on and on
did I dream this belief?
or did i believe this dream?
now i can find relief
After my post https://tersiaburger.com/2013/06/16/what-is-the-difference-between-alzheimers-and-dementia/
I received a couple of emails and comments that I kept private and did not approve for publication. I decided to do this post at the time. Alzheimers is a terminal disease. Alzheimers has no survivors. The harsh truth is that there is no cure. There is no treatment.
Alzheimer’s disease is not just memory loss – Alzheimer’s kills.
• Among 70-year-olds with Alzheimer’s, 61 percent are expected to die within a decade. Among 70-year-olds without Alzheimer’s, only 30 percent will die within a decade.
Change in Number of Deaths
between 2000 and 2010
• Alzheimer’s is the only cause of death among the top 10 in America without a way to prevent it, cure it or even slow its progression.
• Dementia is the second largest contributor to death among older Americans, second only to heart failure.
Alzheimer’s disease is the 6th
Today, there are no survivors of Alzheimer’s. If you do not die from it, you die with it.
• One in every three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another dementia.
• In 2013, an estimated 450,000 people in the United States will die with Alzheimer’s, meaning they will die after developing the disease.
• Today, over 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, including an estimated 200,000 under the age of 65. By 2050, up to 16 million will have the disease.
• Of Americans aged 65 and over, 1 in 9 has Alzheimer’s, and 1 in 3 people aged 85 and older has the disease.
• Another American develops Alzheimer’s disease every 68 seconds. In 2050, an American will develop the disease every 33 seconds.
Alzheimer’s takes a devastating toll not just on those with the disease – but also on their caregivers. http://www.alz.org/documents_custom/2013_facts_figures_fact_sheet.pdf
Statistics can be extremely misleading. Alzheimer’s disease cannot be definitely diagnosed until after death, when the brain can be closely examined for certain microscopic changes caused by the disease. However, through thorough testing and a “process of elimination,” doctors today can diagnose what they refer to as probable Alzheimer’s disease with almost 90% accuracy.
My father’s death certificate stated “Natural Causes“… In South Africa and most countries, the law requires that a death investigation, or autopsy, be performed when someone dies under mysterious circumstances. Autopsies are usually done if the death was caused by injury, poisoning, infectious complications, foul play (homicide), or when someone dies without an attending physician. If any one of these criteria is present, the local coroner or medical examiner will perform an autopsy to determine the cause of death.
So what do Alzheimers Patients die from?
Stroke is a major cause of death in Alzheimer’s patients
Falling. Slower reaction time, difficulty recognizing changes in the height or depth of a step, can lead to tripping and falling. Changes in balance and coordination combined with poor memory can make it difficult for a person with Alzheimer’s to get from one place to another and avoid hazardous objects at the same time. He may miss a step while looking for a door or trying to listen to someone’s conversation.
Pulmonary aspiration. Aspiration is the entry of secretions or foreign material into the trachea and lungs. Alzheimer’s patients forget how to eat and/or swallow and might start choking on their food. The food basically goes down the wrong pipe. A tell-tale sign is when they start coughing whilst eating. This can lead to infection and pneumonia.
Pneumonia is a major cause of death in Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. Decreased mobility and pulmonary aspiration are major causes of pneumonia…
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI). An unidentified UTI can lead to sepsis which can in turn result in organ failure…
Dad in the ambulance en-route to hospital 1
On the 9th of May 2011 my dad had a bad fall. He was taken to hospital by ambulance and admitted to ICU as he required 24/7 care. On the 10th I met with the medical team. My Dad appeared to be in a coma. The Physician said that Dad had pneumonia. The Neurologist confirmed that Dad was in the Severe advanced stage of Alzheimers. The Specialist Surgeon wanted to operate on my Dad’s aneurysm….
I made the heart wrenching decision that there would be no aggressive treatment of the pneumonia. There would be no operation. The Physician agreed with my decision.
On the 14th of May I took my Dad home. Hospice evaluated Dad and accepted him as a case. Hospice started administering Morphine, Dormicum and Serenace subcutaneously and my beautiful dad was comfortable. My Dad battled to swallow and I was pretty distressed about his liquid and food intake. Dad’s core body temp had dropped to 34.5 degrees C. Hospice said that Dad’s body had started shutting down and not to worry about his food or liquid intake. On the 17th my beautiful father cried during a lucid moment because he could not articulate his thoughts and he was mumbling …
Twenty three days after his first fall my Dad lost his battle against Alzheimers when he forgot how to breathe.
Did he die from Alzheimers or pneumonia? Maybe it was the fall or even the aneurysm? His death certificate read “Natural Causes” – my Dad is not an Alzheimer statistic…
Hospice – friend or foe?
A blogger friend, Terry, is preparing for her beloved brother Al, to move home from an Assisted Living Facility. Al suffers from Parkinson’s disease and his general health condition is extremely precarious. Terry blogged: “I finally heard nothing from the phone. I had done everything I could find to do trying not to have to make the dreaded call to Hospice. I decided not to use the Hospice here in our county. I was very disappointed in them with the lack of care they gave to my father.” http://terry1954.wordpress.com/2013/06/17/al-and-hospice-meet/
Vic wrote this on her Face Book page on the 15th of May 2011… “Today Hospice came to access my Grandfather… They dripped him & made him comfortable. He has lost his swallowing reflex, sleeps most of the day, is completely bedridden & can barely talk… The suddenness of his deterioration is very difficult to comprehend. Could you all say a big prayer for my Gramps and especially my Mom, who lost her best friend of 25 yrs., age 51 to a heart attack last Tuesday. My Mother is one of the strongest, bravest people I know… How do we say goodbye, how do I take my Boys to say their Goodbyes tomorrow, how do we accept that this incredible man has such little time left regardless of the fact that we all know that its best for him. How can I be strong for my babies when my heart breaks all over again, every day when I see him…? Especially my Eunice Friends will all remember how desperately my Gramps and Gran loved and spoilt me and how VERY MUCH they meant to me… I don’t want to live without him even though I realise that that is extremely selfish, but I love my Grandfather so desperately, it’s not fair… All I ask for is compassion… Compassion for Gramps and my Mother… Thank you to everyone for all your love & support through everything… Love Vic…”
I am a great believer in the services that Hospices offer – worldwide. Hospice cared for my Dad in the last week of his life and for Vic the last 5.5 months of her life. My experience was positive.
The hospice movement was started in the 1950’s in London by Dame Cicely Saunders, and the first hospice facility opened in London in 1967. Seven years later the United States opened their first hospice facility in 1974. In America the hospice movement has blossomed and hospice now serves 44.6% of patient deaths. Unfortunately, the median length of service for hospice patients is only 19.1 days, which means many patients did not receive the benefit of hospice care until the end of a difficult illness. In my country only 5% of the dying actually have access to Hospice services.
The original idea of hospice is that once curative treatments are no longer effective, a patient enrols in hospice to receive comfort care. In our culture of “fighting” death illness that should be addressed through ongoing decisions about the risk and benefit of interventions gets turned into a battle that should be won or lost. No one wants to be a loser, so the patient is reluctant to quit curative care until there is absolutely no hope. Many physicians are geared the same way, and their desire to give hope and “beat” disease results in a reluctance to call in hospice even when they know the situation is bleak.
Hospice care is for a terminally ill person who’s expected to have six months or less to live. This doesn’t mean that hospice care will be provided only for six months, however. Hospice care can be provided as long as the person’s doctor and hospice care team certify that the condition remains life-limiting.
The benefits of hospice and palliative care
Research published in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management found that terminally-ill patients who received hospice care lived on average 29 days longer than those who did not opt for hospice near the end of life.
Source: National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
Hospice care providers offer specialized knowledge and support at the end of life just as obstetricians and midwives lend support and expertise at the start of life. Hospice can reduce anxiety in both the terminally ill patient and his or her family by helping them make the most of the time remaining and achieve some level of acceptance.
When terminally ill patients, who are often already in a weakened physical and mental state, make the decision to receive hospice and palliative care instead of continued curative treatment, they avoid the dangers of over-treatment. In-home care from a hospice team often means the patient receives greater monitoring than he or she would in a hospital. In addition to focusing on the physical health and comfort of a patient, hospice care also focuses on the emotional needs and spiritual well-being of the terminally ill and their loved ones.
The above is all well documented facts. Yet, when a family is faced with that terrible decision to call in Hospice, it is a deeply emotional decision. The phone call is a terrifying telephone call. This is evident from Vic and Terry’s posts…..
It made me realise what a massive challenge lies ahead of us in Stepping Stone Hospice. We need to educate the community. We need to dispel the fear of and for Hospice.
I read this lovely post that truly brought a smile to my face. – Thank you Kate! This post brought a smile to my face and a lovely memory moment to my heart. I am not going to spoil this funny post by telling you what it is about as I would encourage you to pop over and read it personally. I cannot do it justice. http://kateswaffer.com/2013/05/28/tuesday-humour-is-god-a-woman/
For one or other reason this post reminded me of a funny incident when Vic was in Gr 2 at a Convent.
Vic was a very bright little girl and a natural-born leader. She was an excellent little speller. Vic was never allowed to participate in any Physical Training lessons at school. The poor little poppet had to sit and watch her little friends running around, honing their developmental skills through exercise.
It is not clear what the reason was, but one of her little friends decided that she would join Vic on the benches – just watching. Maybe she forgot her PT clothes at home, maybe she wanted to keep Vic company – who knows? Mrs Bowling was the PT teacher. The kids were pretty scared of her… She had a booming voice and intimidating stature.
When I arrived at school that afternoon I was taken aside by Vic’s class teacher, Sr Norbitt. In a hushed tone she told me that I had to see the principal… There had been an “incident”. Dear Sr Norbitt’s face had a disapproving scowl on it, but she did assure me that Vicky was not ill or hurt…
I was asked to take a seat in the principal’s office. I was really very concerned that something serious had happened.
Mother Superior proceeded to tell me that Vic’s little friend had presented a letter to Mrs Bowling excusing her from PT. She took out the note and I immediately recognised Vic’s baby handwriting…big, perfectly rounded letters saying…
“Dear Mrs Bowling Mirella can not do PT. She is sick. She has X-Rays Mirella Mommy”
When the girls were confronted with this very obvious forgery, they admitted that Vic had written the letter because she was the best speller in the class and knew about diseases because she was always sick… Vic wanted to really impress the girls but the only “sick” word she could spell was….. X-Rays!
They were given a week’s detention.
Who knew that you could fly dear Vic?
One day you sprouted wings
Valiantly ascending heavenward
despite all you had endured.
At last the pain subsided
and all at once was gone.
You left a radiant legacy
that lovingly carries on.
A beautiful spirit in the sky.
Now free from sorrow, hurt and pain.
so many loved ones
here on earth
await embracing you again.
Wendie Jeanne Deacon©