Saturday, March 20, 2010

In Honor Of Chelsea

Today, many people have descended on a park in San Diego. They are there to finish a run that Chelsea will never got to complete. Chelsea King was a beautiful young woman who went out for a run one morning, and never came back home. Instead, she fell prey to a child predator that shouldn't have been out of jail.

So, today, the masses go to not only pay respect to Chelsea, and finish what she started, but to take a stand for her, and every child in our nation. A beautiful life was taken from us because the system failed her. No one can really say how many lives have been taken because the system fails to truly protect those who can not protect themselves, our children.

This is unacceptable. We as a society must take up the cause of keeping our children safe, and realize that if we don't take this stand, no one else is going to do it for us. We must be vigilant. We must be adamant. We can change the laws, and though it can never bring back the beauty of the those that were lost, we can honor them, by making sure it doesn't happen again.

Consider this issue, and when legislation comes that will give our children more protection, take a stand. Call your elected officials and let them know that you want change, you want to see laws passed that will keep our children safer. Be a part of the effort in any and every way you can.

So, today, while I can not be with those wonderful people running where Chelsea ran, I will instead go to the park here. The Girls and I will have a picnic lunch, and play, and then we are going to walk, and we are going to do it all in honor of Chelsea.

I'm a vegetarian not a side show freak.

To paraphrase one very muscely cartoon character who also derived a nutrition from vegetables, I am what I am. What I am is an ovo-lacto vegetarian. That may sound like a mouth full, but it simply means that I eat dairy and eggs but no meat of any kind. No big deal, but I'm laying it out there like it is today. See over the past decade or so I have taken a lot of crap about the fact that I am a vegetarian and I just don't get it..quite frankly, I am kind of shocked by some people's reactions to my vegetarianism. I am often shocked at their shock. I get that I live in the south, home of the road kill cafes, but seriously people, its 2010, its not big news or a big deal any more.

Its almost as though some people have as much of an aversion to my not eating meat as I do to the thought of eating meat. So, back to my main point, I'm going to lay it all out there today.

I don't eat animals. This does not make me weird or strange, no matter what you think. It makes me a person who loves animals and can't bear the thought of eating another living, breathing, thinking, creature, no matter how dumb it may be. It makes me sad in side and grossed out at the same thing. Animals are friends and companions, not a source of food, in my mind. When I see a piece of meat, in my mind, I instantly see the animal laying there. I just do. It is how I am wired.

Now, all that being said, I don't think it is wrong for you to eat meat. If your conscience is clean when you chow down, then you are doing what is right for you. I have to do what is right for me.

If you do have any questions for me, maybe about my diet if you have concerns about having me over for dinner, feel free to ask. I would be glad to clarify anything you might need clarified. I would be glad to help you learn to cook healthy, tasty vegetarian meals, as well. You can even come over for dinner if you want something special and non meaty.

I am, though, completely tired of any backlash for not eating meat. Basically, you need to get over it.

I am happy with myself, and love the way I live. So, be happy for me, and appreciate our differences. We can all live together, and can even eat together peaceably, if you would just let us. So, please, take me as I am. You don't have to understand it. There isn't anything for you to understand more than the fact that I won't ingest animals. There isn't anything for your to like or dislike, either. It is just what it is. I am what I am.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

If I Make You Cry, You Probably Deserve It

Tonight, I made someone cry. I made another mother cry. This was no stranger, either. It was someone I know very well and am around often enough. Quite frankly, she did deserve it. She deserved more than just a tongue lashing, but for some reason, I spared her.

Most of the time, I believe that however people choose to parent, it is not my place to judge. You do what works for you, and I do what works for me. I may not like what you do as a parent, but it isn't my place to tell you what to do.

There are two exceptions to that belief of mine. The first is if you ask. The second is when I feel a child is truly in danger.

Tonight, I encountered the latter of those two exceptions. With the recent news about Chelsea King, I think my danger meter is off the charts full time right now. Then, I saw a clear cut case of neglect and child endangerment, and my meter exploded.

This mother is truthfully lucky it was only my own face and finger in her face. The full force of that danger meter explosion came right at her, but she needed it. She needed someone to snap her back to our reality and make her understand that what she did was absolutely terrible. She needed to cry. The reality that we live in isn't pretty all the time, and we have to do everything in our power to try and keep our children from seeing that ugly side. She put her child in danger by choice, by being lazy, and that is simply not acceptable.

I hope tonight I was that shock for her. With all of my heart I hope that she never makes that mistake again. It is my hope that child can grow up to live a happy and healthy life, and if it takes an occasional verbal beating on her mother to get her there, so be it. I'll be around to provide that service when necessary.