Friday, February 16, 2018

This is About Guns

There's been another mas shooting this week, at a school...again...dead kids...again. Can you blame me if this consumes me? Because I am consumed with anger, frustration, sadness, pain, and refuse to believe that all we can do is send out our 'thoughts and prayers'. I know there is power in prayer but we no longer have the luxury to think this insanity can all just go away and be magically solved for us just by thinking and praying. 

We need to let our voices be heard. Let your representatives hear you as you say our country needs stricter gun control laws. 

Because this is about guns. THIS IS ABOUT GUNS

If you are not willing to admit that, then you are lying, in denial, stupid or plain evil.

Over and over, incidents of mass shootings in this country happened because someone who is angry, or unstable, had access to assault rifles. Civilians have no need for assault rifles. These weapons have no other purpose than to kill. 

They're not for hunting, not for recreation, not for mere self-defense. They are meant to kill the most number of people with the least effort within a small time frame.


Make your voice count. 

Vote for the right people during elections. Inform yourselves as to who have sold their souls to the NRA and have no desire for REAL change to happen. 

In the meantime, I leave you with these.....

How Japan Solves Gun Violence:

When Your Officials Can't Offer More Than 'Thoughts & Prayers'

NRA's Top Ten Funded Officials:

Millions of Dollars from the NRA to your Representatives:

Friday, February 2, 2018

Worlds Through Words

Words have consequences

If you’ve ever doubted the power of words, imagine being illiterate, or visiting a foreign country where you don’t speak the language or where the characters used are not ones you’re versed in. Imagine riding a train or a bus and then realizing that none of the signs make sense to you, leaving you feeling lost. 

Words and our ability to wield and receive them appropriately give us power in our everyday lives. They’re easy to take for granted and yet once misused or completely gone can leave us tragically broken.  

I don’t like wasting words. Though I understand that at times we need ‘fillers’ to get by in this world—'Hi'; ‘How’s it going’; ‘Have a nice day’—there’s a part of me that will always question their worth. You see, I love intentional words. Needless to say, my passion lies in meaningful conversations, rendering me somewhat inept at small talk. Maybe it's because I love how words, when meant and pregnant with truth, have the capacity to genuinely move you and even cause your body to respond.  They can make your heart beat fast, tighten your stomach, cause you to blush. You could get chills, make you choke, or weak in the knees.  

Think of your experience when someone you desired said 'I love you' to you, or maybe you uttered the same to someone who has always felt unlovable. Think of the gift of assurance given when someone says 'I choose YOU' and the possibilities opened by that declaration.

Imagine the fears calmed and banished just with a simple 'Mommy's here' uttered to a helpless child. And what about 'I forgive you' or 'I believe in you' and the spirits they heal?

Have you ever been in the presence of ‘Goodbye’ between two souls who mean the world to each other? Only immeasurable sorrow and a palpable void are left after the realization that no more words can be shared between them.

I know too well how potent words are since I am one whose most significant relationships rely mainly on words. As an adult migrant, most of my family and some treasured friends are not physically with me. We lay out words to bridge our gap, convey emotions and reveal truths. I’m painfully familiar with how utterances can make or break my universe, turn my mood into a frantic pendulum.

I have felt much of words' consequences and my consciousness has been shaped much too often by mere words that I would never deny their power. Where action or physicality is not possible, words—whether spoken or written— become sufficient verbs to me.

Words can be so many different things to different people, but one thing is certain: Meaningful words make it possible for our individual worlds to collide. What we say can serve as keys we offer to others so they may gain insight into who we are, the life we've lived and even who we aspire to be. If we truly value ourselves and others, it will show in our words. It will also show in how much we listen and appreciate those other worlds we have the privilege of colliding with. Savor words, and while there is time, collide as much as you can with the worlds most precious to you.

*This piece was originally published on Catharsis under the title Crashing Into You (June 2011), and has now been slightly revised.