memories, mental health, politics

Get the woman a snack…

A friend of mine shared this today on Facebook…

Good advice. I would also advise proofreading.

When I saw this, I was suddenly reminded of a story Bill told me about his ex wife. Bill’s ex is quite narcissistic. She has a way of turning the most trivial and ridiculous issues into huge dramatic events. She would take any mundane situation and turn it into a test of Bill’s love. Inevitably, he would fail, because nothing he did was ever good enough. And sure enough, that’s what she did one day when they stopped at a gas station and she wanted a soda.

Bill went into the gas station and bought his ex wife a plastic bottle of Dr. Pepper. When he handed it to her, she immediately got upset. Why? Because it wasn’t a fountain drink. Ex claimed that if Bill had really loved her and cared about her feelings, he would know that she prefers fountain drinks with ice in them to bottled ones. The rest of the road trip was spoiled by the heavy cloak of resentment that hung over them as they sat in the car, fuming at each other over the wrong soda.

Naturally, this seemingly insignificant event in their marriage turned into a huge row that Bill still occasionally talks about years later. It wasn’t so much about the soda, and the fact that Bill brought her a bottle instead of a fountain drink. It was about her constant need to test him, and to find ways to criticize him for anything and everything. It was her way of trying to stay in charge by turning on her rage machine and forcing Bill to be on the defensive. That kind of behavior, which she frequently indulged, was crazymaking. He never knew what would set her off.

I have experienced the same kind of treatment. It mostly came from my dad, who was not a narcissist, but did suffer from alcoholism. There were times when he could be very reasonable and calm. Then, there were times when he would freak out over something totally innocuous. And it was hard to tell when he would be calm and reasonable, or when he would blow up in my face. It caused a lot of anxiety. And then the anxiety would turn to depression, because there was nothing I could do to anticipate or stop the surprise attacks. All I could try to do was avoid my dad, who was supposed to be a “loved one”.

I think that’s why today, I have such a hard time with people who are verbally abusive. I can’t deal with people who yell at me. That’s a very quick way to get on my no contact list. Verbal abuse is not acceptable. It causes invisible psychic damage that makes it harder to trust. If you’re a decent person, and you don’t enjoy conflicts, you’ll soon find yourself walking on eggshells around this type of person– people who are always looking to be disappointed and critical.

Fortunately, I don’t really think that much about Ex anymore. It’s amazing how liberated I feel from her now, since Bill’s younger daughter started to communicate with him. I now see her as more pathetic than anything else. But I know that she still wreaks havoc toward anyone who is forced to be around her or deal with her. And she is remarkably similar to other narcissistic types we know… like Bill’s wartime boss, who delighted in fucking with people’s heads in Iraq. As if being at war isn’t bad enough!

A person has to be pretty miserable to ruin a road trip over a bottle of Dr. Pepper. Frankly, I love it when Bill brings me snacks. He knows what I like, and even if he brings me something unexpected, I usually end up enjoying it. Because if he brings me a snack, it means he thought of me. That, in and of itself, means he cares. Now, if he brings me something loaded with mushrooms, that would probably hurt my feelings. Bill knows I have a phobia of mushrooms. But Bill would never do that, even if we were fighting. He’s just not an inconsiderate person.

Moving on…

I didn’t actually mean to write about this today. There’s a lot I could rant about. For instance, I saw the below picture on Facebook as I was waking up this morning…

Absolutely unacceptable! Shocking this this is going on in 2020! Sadly, I don’t think contacting the police will even help, since a lot of police departments are staffed with the same types of thuggish creeps.

And I could also write about the dipshit white supremacists who plotted to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, supposedly to put her “on trial”. What the fuck? Where do these people come from? And what gives them the idea that they have the right to kidnap elected officials? What did they think the outcome would be?

I think Donald Trump, who is also a narcissist, emboldens these people into thinking that he’s going to let them turn America into their warped vision of what they think it should be. Sad to say, their ideals are steeped in racism, sexism, and classism. On the other hand, if Gretchen Whitmer were a man, I doubt they would have ever tried this. These white supremacist fuckheads think women are inherently weak. I’m just glad they were dumb enough to reveal their plans on social media, so they could be dealt with properly before Governor Whitmer was hurt.

You would think that people could see that our leader, much like Bill’s ex wife, is toxic, crazy, and turns little problems into big ones. This morning, I actually saw a news article about Trump demanding that Hillary Clinton’s emails get made public. Why? I guess it’s because he’s losing big time in the polls and is scrambling to get people to talk about something other than the pandemic. But honestly, in 2020, who cares about Hillary Clinton’s emails? She’s not running for president. It’s a lot of much ado about nothing. Same as the bottle of Dr. Pepper versus a fountain drink.

“Anna Mae, just take the cake please.” I feel like people like Ex, Trump, and Bill’s wartime boss are like Ike Turner, force feeding everyone their bullshit.

And good people– good leaders– like Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who enacted policies for public health reasons, end up being targeted by dipshits with guns who think that America should be a place where the women are kept in their places. They’d prefer them to be beautiful, quiet, and docile… and just take the cake, please. It’s positively sickening. But it’s always sickening when abusive jerks get the upper hand.

Anyway… it’s time for breakfast. Bill made me a big snack. 😉

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politics

There is no such thing as a “wasted vote”…

So… the guy I wrote about yesterday, the dude who was flabbergasted that people think that racial relations are better under Donald Trump, posted another controversial thread. This time, he asked his Facebook friends what percentage of people who voted for Donald Trump are white supremacists. Naturally, that opened up a floodgate of polarized responses. Several of his conservative friends took issue with, once again, being lumped in as “white supremacists” or “racists” simply because they back Trump. I have already expressed my thoughts on that. Personally, I don’t believe that all conservatives are racists, though I do think that many racists support Trump. I think Trump emboldens and normalizes racist behavior. I also think that people who still support having Trump in the White House are willfully ignorant to what a shitty, unethical person he is. Why not demand a candidate who is more ethical and qualified for the job?

Having written that, I understand that some people always vote for their party, regardless of who the candidate is. Some people will support Trump simply because he’s an alleged Republican, or because he claims to be against abortion. Some will vote for him just because they can’t stand the other candidate, for whatever reason. I know a lot of people dislike Hillary Clinton and they voted for Trump simply because they couldn’t stand the idea of voting for her. To be honest, I can’t blame them for that. Although I think Mrs. Clinton was much more qualified for the job, I am not personally a fan of hers or her husband’s. However, I also think Bill Clinton was a much better president than Trump is.

I am sick of political dynasties from either side, and I’m tired of people in high places getting away with being narcissists, crooks, and leches. Guys like my husband can’t get away with harassing women or being so outspoken about certain groups of people without risking their livelihoods. I see no reason why Trump, Bill Clinton, and their ilk can get away with their shenanigans while in government service, when the rank and file employees who work for them must adhere to an ethical code to be hired, let alone keep their jobs.

I voted third party in the last presidential election because I was voting in Texas, and I knew Hillary Clinton would never win Texas. She did win San Antonio, which was the city where I was voting. So really, my vote didn’t matter in terms of the election’s results. I still don’t think I “wasted” it, though. I did make a choice. I think more people should choose the person they think is best for the job, not the specific party.

I have never made it a secret that I vote for people over parties. I have voted for people in just about every party, from Libertarian to Green and, of course, the two big parties that always win. When I do choose to vote “third party” and dare to admit it, I often get a condescending lecture about how I’m “wasting my vote” by not choosing Democrat or Republican. I’ve heard it from die hard liberals and dyed in the wool conservatives. Frankly, that kind of talk pisses me right the fuck off. I find it extremely rude, not to mention shortsighted and fallacious. Please, for the love of Christ and everything else that is holy, do NOT offer me another explanation of how the electoral college works. It’s not necessary, nor will it be appreciated.

First of all, as an American, I still have the right to vote for whomever I please. I also have the right not to vote if I choose. That’s part of being free. Many people chose not to vote in the last presidential election. If more people had voted, maybe the end result would have been different. Or maybe Trump was simply destined to be the president. It’s hard to tell, because there is no way to know which way the non-voters would have cast their votes. Due to the electoral college, it’s pretty hard for one person’s vote to matter that much, anyway. What matters is how people as a whole voted in the state and how many electoral votes and how much influence that state gets in the election.

I do think voting is very important, and I try to make the effort with each election. But when one candidate wins the popular vote by millions and still loses the election, that’s pretty discouraging. I’m sure plenty of average Americans were terribly let down by the results of the last presidential election. Some people blamed third party voters, although I don’t think third party votes had much to do with the results. There still aren’t that many of us, and people often make assumptions about which way third party voters will swing without actually knowing if their assumptions are valid.

Secondly, even if a third party candidate has no chance of winning, by voting for that person, I’m still making my voice heard. People often complain that there’s not that much of a difference between Democrats and Republicans, yet they refuse to make a different choice. As long as people only vote for the two big parties, there can never be any evidence that the system needs to change… that we need more than one viable candidate for such an important job. I’m pretty sure that there will never be a third party president in my lifetime, but if no one ever gives them a chance, how can the system ever change? If I just vote Democrat or Republican, yet bitch and moan about how much I dislike both candidates, that seems to be a big waste of time. There’s nothing less empowering than whining about how much something sucks, yet still making the same choices that led to the situation sucking. If something doesn’t work, why not try a new approach? Maybe if we had more viable candidates, the big parties might choose candidates who are actually more qualified and higher caliber, rather than the person with the most money, power, and name recognition.

A popular cartoon that circulated after Trump won. I don’t care if people are “impressed” by my voting habits. In fact, I probably shouldn’t even discuss them among “friends”. I didn’t used to do that, but Trump changed everything.

People who claim third party voters are “wasting their vote” jump to a lot of conclusions, many of which could be wrong. A lot of people think that if there wasn’t a Libertarian candidate to vote for, Libertarian voters would naturally vote for the Republican, instead. I voted Libertarian in the last election, not because I necessarily identified as a conservative, but because I thought of the candidates presented, Gary Johnson was the best person for the job and had the least amount of baggage. I liked more of his ideas, and appreciated the fact that I’d not heard of him being a pervert or a criminal. He was a popular governor, and I liked his comments about social issues, yet I didn’t see him threatening my husband’s livelihood working for the military, which, sorry, is a valid concern for us– Bill is 55 and I’m 47. We have to think about our futures, so we don’t end up in the poorhouse. Even though Libertarians as a party have some policies that I don’t agree with at all, Gary Johnson just seemed like the best choice to me, in spite of his “Aleppo moment”. That’s just my opinion.

If Gary Johnson hadn’t been on the ticket, I probably would have voted for Mrs. Clinton, not Jill Stein, even though Jill Stein ran in the Green Party and supposedly is more aligned to Mrs. Clinton’s politics. I’ll admit that I didn’t know much about Jill Stein, but I’m probably closer to the right than the left. I am extremely liberal about some issues, but more conservative about others. Jill Stein, who advocated for drastic cuts to the military and closing overseas bases, seemed to be too left for me, although after the last few years, I might consider voting for her if she ran in 2020. But then, in 2020, I plan to vote for whomever has the best chance of unseating Trump. I want him OUT of the White House, and unless the other major candidate is somehow much worse than he is, I will probably be voting for that person. Trump may win in 2020, but that will not stop me from voting my conscience, and my conscience says Trump needs to go, pronto.

The bottom line is, I think people should be encouraged to vote. If someone makes the effort to show up to vote, or mail in their absentee ballot, that effort should be respected and appreciated. You may not like the way I vote. I may not like the way you vote. But as Americans who value freedom, we should all have the right to make our own choices. While I think that voting is a responsibility that all free people have, part of freedom is being able to choose whether or not to exercise the responsibility to vote. And– if a person is completely uninformed about the candidates and uninterested in the results, it’s probably better that he or she refrain from voting, anyway.

In any case, I posted my comment but decided to bow out of that thread because I simply can’t bear to read more sanctimonious drivel from either side of the argument. I don’t understand Trump supporters at all, even as I support their right to vote their conscience. I don’t see how supposedly decent people can admire a man who has such a long history of doing the wrong things. However… I am not yet at the point at which I assume all Trump supporters are necessarily bad people. I know a lot of them are simply ignorant or refuse to face the truth. They want to support their party. They think abortion is “wrong”, gun rights are “right”, and that certain people deserve fewer rights than others… and that making money is the most important thing. Or some of them simply believe that Republicans really are more “family friendly”… or Christian friendly, and they think being Christian is the only correct way to be. I’ve seen too much of the world to continue buying into that bullshit, but I know the people who believe it don’t really want to hear what I have to say. It would be a waste of my time to try to change their convictions when they aren’t open to the idea.

Not a fan of “tolerance camp”, either…

I also don’t believe in trying to force people to accept my point of view, shaming them into what I think would be a “more moral” vote, because that would be disingenuous. After all, I don’t like getting a liberal guilt trip about how I only need to think about the disadvantaged, when I would like to avoid becoming disadvantaged myself. There is no shame in considering one’s own interests when voting. While I can understand that many liberals would like to see the military drastically cut and installations closed, that would not be a good idea in terms of my husband’s livelihood. It wouldn’t be in our interest to vote for a candidate who wants to decimate the military, and as much as I appreciate a lot of left leaning ideals, I’m still sensible enough to know that I like having a roof over my head, food to eat, and the ability to pay the bills and help others. So I typically vote for the most moderate candidate, even if that person happens to be third party.

I don’t like heated arguments, so I’ll keep venting on my blog… and some people will read it and agree… or not. Isn’t it nice to still have that freedom?

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