What About Education?

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It seems that in America the states have lots of money for building new prisons, but no money for education.  I am talking specifically about Oklahoma, but this is true of other states as well.  In full disclosure, I am the daughter of a teacher, and I also homeschooled my children from grades 3 to 8.  I believe strongly in a good education system where science and math are taught, along with accurate history, literature and the arts.  I well-rounded education is a requirement for a good society.  I’m not alone in this, since many of our ancestors were also in agreement.

I don’t know if you’ve been paying attention to the various teachers strikes, but they were not only striking for more money (remember, a teacher must have a Bachelors degree in teaching, but also a Master’s Degree – that is six years of college), but they are also striking for newer textbooks (some are over twenty years old), there are not enough books for the number of students, there are leaking roofs, moldy walls and ceilings, exposed wires, broken desks and chairs, no paper, and the list goes on and on.

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So, my question is this?  How did this happen?  Why is education being slowly strangled due to lack of money?  As a child I can remember when people who were smart were looked up to.  At some point, many parts of society decided to wage a war on education.  Being “smart” became less desirable, with put-downs such as “nerd” and “geek” being used.  Being a “bookworm” was a negative thing.  I wish I knew why education is no longer valued.  I do have some thoughts, including the fact that if people are kept from learning deductive reasoning, they may be easier to trick.  I’m leaving some links below that I hope you will check out.  The videos of the schools are really difficult to watch because they look like third world schools.  Please comment on this subject below.

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/answer-sheet/wp/2014/02/05/americas-school-funding-problems-state-by-state/?noredirect=on

 

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U.N. Expert – Extreme Poverty in the United States

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The UN sent an expert in poverty to tour the United States and look at the rates of poverty here.  Just so you know, the level of poverty in the US is sky-high.  So, where did Philip Alston go to check out the conditions of those living in poverty?  Alabama.  That’s right, Butler County to be precise.  What did he find?  Raw sewage flowing from homes into open trenches and pits.  Is it any surprise that an epidemic of hookworm has recently been reported in Butler County?  No, no it’s not.  By the way, hookworm is usually found in third world countries.  Alston also visited California, Georgia, West Virginia, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.  Alston also said that he’s never seen this level of poverty in a First World country.  Huh.  Wonder why?

The U.N. has also concluded that the U.S. is the most unequal society in the world.  So much for the “American Dream”.  What has been concluded in the report is that along with having the highest level of poverty, that poverty hits white people more than minority people.  Not only that, but the viewpoint that has been sold to the American people is that poor people are poor for the simple reason that they are lazy, and refuse to “help themselves”.  This is a falsity, since most of the poor are working people, and many of them work multiple jobs.

Please educate yourselves by following the links that I’ve provided below.  With all the cuts that will be coming to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, the CHIP program, Food Stamps and Fuel Assistance, the social problems are only going to get worse.

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http://www.newsweek.com/alabama-un-poverty-environmental-racism-743601

http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=58300#.WkvOzTdOnIV

http://ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=22533&LangID=E

 

 

Education and Learning

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As usual, I’ve come to the party late, however, I’m here and I’ve paid attention.  I’ve recently read the Young Adult novel, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.  This is an extraordinary novel.  To prove it, it’s already been banned in more than one location in the United States.  A book being banned only means that it will make you think, something too many people don’t want to do, especially if what you learn from it is in opposition to what it is that you may have been taught.  The novel follows the life of Starr Carter, who by the age of sixteen has held two of her best friends in her arms as they lay dying after being shot.  This is not only her story, but the story of too many.  The poor, the over-looked, and the reviled.

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For those of you who may not have read this novel, I hope that you will.  Go out and buy it, or borrow it from your local library.  It covers so much of the experiences of children growing up as part of a reviled people.  The poverty, the inability to “rise above” due to lack of livable wages, poor education systems, and the grinding down of an entire segment of society.  Poverty is hard.  How can it not be when you are choosing between food and rent?  We need to understand, choose compassion and help our neighbors.  Only then will our country be better.  Together we stand, divided, as we are, we are falling.  And in this falling, it is all of us, not just a few of us.  Everything is interconnected.  We are all one.

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I Just Can’t…Republican Tax Bill

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The Senate has voted to give itself the biggest tax break in years.  Yes, that’s right, while the rest of us will be paying more in taxes, the richest people get to pay less.  Not only that, they also voted for some pretty terrible things.  Don’t believe me?  If you’re on Medicare, your cancer treatment will no longer be paid for.  Since there is the excessively high cost of medicine in the U.S., and people simply cannot pay for it on their own, now if you’re on Medicare and you get cancer, the “family values” people are basically telling you to “just die already”.  People are going to lose their health care, since the help in paying for it is gone, also.  And, the price of health insurance is, of course, going to go up.

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During the Reagan Administration, we were all introduced to this mythical idea that once the richest corporations got a tax break, they would “trickle down” their profits to the rest of us – you know, the lower echelons of society – the “workers”, if you will.  This “trickle down” would be accomplished with higher wages and a much better standard of living for most of society.  Has this worked?  Did it ever work?  Well, wages have been either stagnant, or have actually gone down ever since.  Now, at the same time, have prices been either stagnant, or gone down?  Oh, please, don’t be silly.  Of course not!  Now, those of us “workers” just get to work more jobs.  Remember, President Bush thought it was “fantastic” to work three jobs.  Of course, he himself never had to, but hey, isn’t it just great for you to need to!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wFNj5sireDo

I will be waiting with bated breath to see just how the corporations and top 1% of the country will “trickle down” their tax breaks to us this time.  Unfortunately though, I fear that I won’t live that long to do so.  After all, if I get sick (or if you do), neither one of us will be able to get health insurance, nor will we be able to afford medical care.  Oh well…there are a lot of us out here who will have to die before the rich will be affected.  And, after all, isn’t it all really just about them after all?  We’re just the supporting cast members.

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Voting Day is Tuesday, November 7th

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This year’s vote isn’t as exciting as last year, however, it is important that you get out and vote.  Who gets elected in your state will have a direct impact on your life.  Get out and vote!

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Just Plain Despair

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Life is hard, it has its ups and downs, and often the downs can be longer than any of its ups.  I really dislike when people set out, in a deliberate manner, to make other people’s lives harder than they have to be.  Seriously, don’t we all have so much to deal with already?

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Sorry for the “f”-word, I couldn’t find an image without it.

I truly do not, and probably never will, understand why other people want to make the sick, die simply because they are poor, or even middle class.  Seriously, if we take the ability to buy health insurance away from people, they will die.  The medical profession isn’t going to magically be able to help all the sick people.  And, remember, this includes all people both the very young and the very old.  Everyone who is not wealthy enough to afford the out-of-control price of insurance.

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What kind of a society are we that this is acceptable behavior?  No concern for the sick, the poor, or anyone who isn’t rich?  Because we will not survive.  We either rise together, or we all fall.

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Hey, Guess What? Climate Change is Real! – A Little Rant for Climate Change Deniers

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This is for those people out there who “don’t believe in climate change”.  Well, guess what, it’s real, it exists and no matter where you live, or whatever rock you want to climb under, your, yes, your, life is going to be impacted.  Have fun with that.

I know, Rush Limbaugh told you all that Hurricane Irma was a big fat lie.  But then what did the illustrious Mr. Limbaugh do?  He ran away.  Yes, that’s right…if it was a big lie, why oh why did the man feel the need to evacuate?  Do people usually evacuate due to a big fake storm?  Logically you wouldn’t think so, but hey climate change deniers, since when have you let logic, science or common sense have anything to do with your thought processes?  After all, if someone repeats a lie often enough, and loud enough, it’s got to be true, right?  Right?  Wait a minute, I can’t hear you over all the yelling about the hoax that climate change is.

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So, 90-something percent of the world’s (yes, the WORLD’S) scientists believe in climate change.  The scientists who don’t are bought and paid for by the oil companies.  Yes, there are those pesky little leaked memos from the oil companies admitting they knew and understood they were making climate change worse forty years ago.  Yup, and all of that counts for nothing, because you, hard-core climate change deniers that you are, say so.  Once again, logic, science and common sense have no place in your thinking.

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So, God has been pretty busy, I bet.  We’ve had four hurricanes in two weeks.  One after another.  Harvey, Irma, Jose and Katia.  Caused by?  Well, who knows, it’s all fake news anyway.  And, those fires that are burning in the states of Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming, Oregon, Montana, Nevada, Idaho, and Washington, I suppose those are also fake news.  Besides, if the country is burning, climate change and drought have not one thing to do with it.  Climate change is fake news!   Okay climate change deniers, what say you?  Can you logically, scientifically and using your common sense, continue to deny?  Let me know in the comments below.  Oh, and before you do so, please please check out the links that I’ve left below.  They are full of logic, lots of scientific facts and common sense.   I am looking forward to your scientific logic in your comments proving that your status as a climate change denier is valid.   Good luck with that.

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https://insideclimatenews.org/news/04062015/global-warming-great-hiatus-gets-debunked-NOAA-study?gclid=Cj0KCQjw6NjNBRDKARIsAFn3NMrjmN0E6mtA6L2dPuziffC_DmzlpCz4VqYeXeFgqZkaZttyrEa6FuUaAtNXEALw_wcB

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/exxon-knew-about-climate-change-almost-40-years-ago/

https://www.arcgis.com/apps/PublicInformation/index.html?appid=4ae7c683b9574856a3d3b7f75162b3f4