Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Self Made

I saw this photo posted on a friends feed on Facebook.  I like the idea of this, but it reeks of wealth privilege which makes it a rather veiled attempt at victim blaming and poverty shaming.

Here was my response:

Okay, my problem with the idiom "the choice is yours" is that it completely ignores circumstance. It quite literally shifts blame to those who don't have the opportunity that comes from privilege.

Yes, you have to make a choice... But the choices available to everyone are almost NEVER 100% their fault. So much goes into what makes up your situation that is completely out of your control.  

The school you go to as a kid is based on the situation your parents found themselves in both financially and geographically when you came of age. Maybe they made bad choices, but you as a kid didn't. That school will give you options and paths you can follow... some better than others. But along the way your choices are mostly made for you until a certain point or you are at the very least highly influenced by the environment (other students, teachers, parents, societal norms, etc). That school you went to may not have the best academics (out of your control) so you didn't get a quality education (even if you did all the homework) so getting into college or trade school is extremely difficult (because someone else is making that judgement) and therefore you end up working for someone else at a low paying job (because someone else decided you don't deserve a living wage because fuck you).

Further, let's talk about economy and weather (both of which are completely out of any normal person's control). Is it the fault of an impoverished New Orleans resident that a hurricane came and flooded the city? Is it their fault that the city's economy was such that maintaining the flood levee was not financially viable? Is it their fault that wages were so low that they had to buy in the poorest neighborhood miles from a grocery store with healthy, inexpensive food? Is it their fault that high fructose corn syrup is cheeper to produce than broccoli so every damn thing they can afford to feed themselves and their kids is laced with the stuff causing life long diabetic problems and obesity?

I'm all for taking responsibility for ones actions. I do my best to teach that to my kids (both biological kids and kids that I interact with a lot). I'm not saying we shouldn't have responsibility.

What I'm saying is remember that statements like this make a huge assumption about the opportunity and privilege a person has. Until we can say without any doubt or argument against that every person has that same opportunity or privilege (and you cannot say that even in the USA), then statements like "You and only you are responsible for every decision and choice you make. Period." are self righteous bullshit.

There is absolutely NO SUCH THING as a self made person. Everyone is made by the circumstance of their life.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Door Knobs in Coal

I saw this photo pop up on my Facebook feed a couple days ago.  It came with the responding conclusion by the original poster that this proves that coal forms faster than millions of years and therefore is evidence against evolution and in favor of the 6,000 year model of earth.

I checked on the comments and the article/post to look for some sort of back store or context.  Predictably enough, none could be found.

In the related feed below, you could find a few more copies of the same image along with other similar apparently man made items imbedded in all sorts of rock and minerals.  Further searching images brings more images along with several wildly different theories as to their origins and the implications.

Without getting into the creation v. evolution nonsense, let's just talk about what we know:  There is a photo(s) of what appears to be man made items in what appears to be solid rock/coal/minerals.  There also seems to be a lot of anecdotal conversation around them.

Let's be clear that without the item in the hands of a qualified specialist, we cannot know for sure two things: 1) if the items in the picture were man made, and 2) the type of material they are imbedded in.

Nowhere am I seeing a specialist citing any official claim that these are as cut and dry as door knobs in coal.

But, let's assume they are man made and in some rock or coal formation.  How did they get there?  How were they removed?  How deep were they?  I have question after question about them and any scientist would too!

In fact, a scientist/geologist presented with compelling, solid evidence of such a find would likely be very interested in this because of the implication for their field of study.  I would even venture that there are many geologists and archeologists that have studied these very finds closely trying to answer the questions above and then some.

So, a final question comes to mind: If this were genuine, then why have we not seen geologists and archeologists coming forward to change the relative theories in existence?

Two likelihoods on the actual origin come to my mind:  1) this is a hoax (as so many to-good-to-be-true things seem to be), or 2) the material around the items is far less impressive than coal (more likely coral or another faster forming mineral).

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Christian Victims

I started thinking about this today, and I have to ask:  Am I the only one who is sick of the Christian victim card being played?

Seriously... It seems like anytime someone challenges Christian beliefs or misrepresents those beliefs and it gets some amount of media or internet attention there are a ton of people who instantly jump on the I'm a Christian victim band wagon.

Why can't I just accept that there are those who do not love Christ like I do and let them make martyrs of themselves?  Is it somehow un-Christian to simply not drag myself into this crap?

Why don't we all give up that "card" and move on to just rejoicing in God and Christ.  God gave us a life to live and a Savior to worship (not to mourn).


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Daddy: Day Two

Much more tired today.  Jenny only got a little touch of sleep last night.

Diapers don't bother me near as much as I had expected.  Smell or sight.  They always used to, but not now.  I'm guessing there is some sort of off switch in us for when it is our baby.  Cecily was the first child I ever changed and it wasn't hard even at first.  The toughest thing is keeping her legs under control when I'm working.  She's still a kicker. (Soccer player?)

We had our first pediatrician visit today.  All went well.  She's already gaining a little from when we brought her home. She went' from about 6 lbs 15 oz to 7 lbs 1 oz.  We were told that they can loose as much as 10% of their birth weight (she was 7 lbs 11 oz brand new).  At two weeks, she should be passing her birth weight.

Sleep is a luxury, but I can't seem to find myself partaking a lot when it's daylight.  I've been a stay-at-home-husband for almost four months now and I have this need to work when it's daylight.  So, I do dishes, laundry, cooking, and cleaning all day long like I did before.  Only, it isn't near as efficient.  One, because I'm so tired, and two, because every time Cecily makes a noise I run to investigate.

Cecily seems to be doing great.  She's awake when she should be and sleeps most of the day.  Feeding is regular at about 3 hour intervals and she's going through diapers just about how she should.  I don't want to jinx it, but I think we got a calm(er) one.


Friday, December 9, 2011

Daddy: Day One

I say day one, but Cecily was born almost four days ago now.  Today is the first full day at home, no nurses, just me and mommy.  So, officially, this is my first day to be daddy.

Tired doesn't really describe it.  Not because it's more or less than tired, but it's different.  I could sleep or rest if I really went at it, but with her in the house I feel a little more motivated to be awake to hear her cry if she needs us.

Coffee is good.  It helps.

Two things that I didn't expect in parenthood:

1) How easy it was to change diapers.  Of course, we are not to the point where she is doing the really nasty cottage cheese ones yet, but the chocolate syrup ones new borns produce are still pretty bad.  But, I'd never changed one before and it was surprisingly easy to do (and to stomach).

2) How automatic the protection urge is.  That's a bad description: "protection urge".  It's more like this need to make her happy.  She's not only old enough to really smile yet, but I still work really hard at it in such an automatic way.

Overall, it's going well.  Jenny is fine.  Cecily is fine.  Our dog, Fibber, is confused.  Life is good.