Dear Trump Voters

Dear Trump Voters,

The election is over and I keep hearing you say, ‘I’m not racist.’ You tell me, ‘I didn’t vote for him because he was a bigot or sexist or homophobic.’ You say, ‘I voted him because of policy. Because of the working class. Because of the economy.’

Yet as the cabinet is being appointed, as potential Supreme Court nominees are being discussed, the world is not seeing a man interested in the working class, determined to make America great. No. They are seeing a fascist who is surrounding himself with people who are determined to destroy people’s rights. The white hoods are marching, the swastika is being spray painted on walls while the legality of Japanese Concentration Camps is being defended.

The majority of voters did not vote for this. Therefore, it should not be their job to defend the rights they already tried to save with their vote.

You did, dear Trump voter. You voted for a fascist. You started this mess, now stop it before real lives are broken and lost. Start writing to Trump and tell him why you really voted for him. That civil liberties will not be violated in your name. That the nation is stronger when ALL its citizens have equal freedom.

You start the petitions. You start calling and writing to your governors, your congress, your senators and tell them that the freedom of United States Citizens must be upheld. You start making it clear that you did NOT vote for this man so he could surround himself with people known for being anti-Semitic, sexist, homophobic and fear diversity of religions. It is your job to make it known to the man you voted for that it was about economic policy – or whatever he said that motivated you to tick his box that did not involve being motivated by racism, sexism, homophobia and bigotry.

People have died trying to preserve democracy. Do not go the graves of Veterans and weep when you put the freedom of US citizens under threat. Do not say you ‘support the troops’ until you make it clear that liberty and justice for all is truly something you value for the people of this nation. Do not sing the national anthem with the words ‘home of the free’ unless you are committed to ensuring the nation will be exactly that. Do not tell people who are scared and frightened that the system will save them. Stand up and make sure it does.

Because we, the voters for Hilary Clinton, remember the McCarthy hearings. We remember the civil rights movement. We remember the Japanese Concentration Camps. We remember there was a time when women did not have the right to vote. We remember the Florida bombing of a gay nightclub. Which is why we made sure we didn’t vote for the fascist.

Voters of Trump, do not sit back and pray for everything to work out for the best. Take responsibility for your vote. Otherwise, as those white hoods march, they are doing it in your name.

To find your congressperson:
http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

To find your senator:
http://www.senate.gov/senators/contact/

To contact the president-elect:
https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact

Exposing the Exoskeleton

In less than two weeks I’ll be wearing this:

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and this:

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and this:

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in public.

It all began with a popping collarbone, which is an odd start to a tale, but at least it is true. At first the subluxation didn’t hurt, only sounded disgusting. Nor did it happen often. But as time wore on, abdominal exercises became routinely accompanied by a macabre percussion, courtesy of my bones. Soreness set in, then pain. Pop! Physio frowned; husband flinched. We taped it. We modified exercises and stretches, then modified some more. But it wasn’t working. Eventually the act of taking off a bra or a jacket created a POP. Worse, the bid to fix the problem was creating another. ‘I’m losing abdominal toning,’ I told the physio. She felt around, eyebrows drawing together and nodded.

This was bad. Nobody should be out of shape. But core strength is vital for people with Hypermobility Syndrome / Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. It is essentially how we have any hope of staying put together. Continue reading

Phone Calls

I was seven years old the first time the call came. It was my friend from over the back fence. She was eight. Her older sister babysat my sister, brother and I from time to time. My friend was crying. I couldn’t understand what she was saying. Down the line came the sounds of her sister screaming as her father pounded her teenage flesh.

I didn’t know what to do. Continue reading

Dear Children

On the 3rd of September, 2015 I, along with three other writers, was invited to speak at an SPCA fund raiser. Yes, four introverts were slated to be the entertainment. Yes, I was to speak about a time that I’ve now left to history. During the run up to the event, my mind was blank. I couldn’t think of anything I hadn’t already said, to say. Then one morning, in the shower (where all good ideas emerge), I began to think of all the things I wanted my children to someday know about This Day.* So that’s what I did, letter by letter.

3 September 2015

Dear Children,
Today I was asked to give a little talk on why I wrote a book. Instead I’m reading letters I’ve written for you, to read someday, but not today. I’m not ready for you to hear these words, even if I’m speaking them to others. Because I’m not sure you’re ready to understand. Or maybe you are and it’s me that isn’t ready. Either way, you can wait.

Continue reading

Black Dog Arriving

On paper my life has been through a bit, in the last three months. 2014 ended with an accident. 2015 began with a death. Another member of the family is gravely ill. Tucked around the loss and worry have been the more everyday life-hitches: Eskom load shedding, Telkom incompetence, a burst water pipe (again, and again, and again), an employee breaking a leg, a minor operation (me), a stomach bug (child)… The physio keeps strapping me up and sending me back out there, like a coach during a game. So it goes, Kurt Vonnegut would say.

The morning after the death, husband and I sat side-by-side, bleary eyed and stunned while a waitress brought our drinks. We were at a rest stop outside Swellendam, facing their picturesque mountains. In an adjoining field, our dog, Orwell, joyfully ran, delighted to be travelling with his family. His bliss was so great you could practically hear Born Free playing as he romped. Smiles crept across our weary faces. I said to Husband, ‘Really glad we brought the dog.’

Then we returned from the wake and Orwell fell into his post-holiday-with-other-dogs-slump. So it goes… Continue reading