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Back In the Day….

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Back in the day wasn’t perfect, it wasn’t the best answer in the world, but it was certainly effective sometimes. Back in the day people couldn’t trash talk on the computer and then run away. If they did decide to talk tough and then cut and run they were called out immediately on their bs and made to look ridiculous. If you walked away from a confrontation without flapping your lips you managed to save face even if it made you look like a coward.

Back in the day people either backed up what they said or they backed down because they knew they’d said something foolish, or perhaps had said the wrong thing to the wrong person. These days you can hide behind your PC and act like you’re the toughest individual that’s ever walked the earth. You can call yourself a social justice warrior because you have the belief that you stand on a moral high ground and can prove it with facts that are pulled from one article or another.

Back in the day we handled our business when things got out of hand. If someone said something we didn’t like, we might let it slide since words are words and don’t mean as much. But if someone got in our face and decided to act in a manner we didn’t care for, or dared to cross that line and push us without provocation, the odds were good that we’d push back, and even harder to get our point across.

Back in those days it wasn’t any more legal than it is now, but it was a lot easy to understand, and it was lot easier to justify. Should someone get in your face and call you on your behavior or your words it’s time to back them up with a mind-blowing revelation or a swift and decisive amount of action that will get them to back off. Otherwise, don’t bother talking.

Back in the day it wasn’t always legal to handle our business the way it needed to be. But it got done all the same. Know why bullies weren’t such a problem back then? We did something about it.

The Generation Gap

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As adults that were born in the 70s or earlier a lot of us have likely run into this issue with younger kids that look at the things we grew up with and call them ‘old’ or ‘outdated’. You can’t blame them really, those things we thought were commonplace back in the day are now seen in the same light that we saw the devices of our parents and grandparents, great for their time but woefully outdated in our own.

There are a great many people that would state that technology should have ended at a certain point, but given how much technology has advanced and how much good it’s done that’s a rather ridiculous statement. Sure it’s become something of a bother at times and sure it’s managed to turn people in zombies now and again as they walk around looking at their phones instead of raising their heads now and again. There are ups and downs to just about everything when it comes to the wide gap that exists between every generation.

We’re all different from generation to generation, this is as unavoidable as the fact that things have been changing regularly from one decade to another. Things change and we have to roll with them, but one thing does remain the same despite the gap that continues to grow between the older folks and the younger. We accept and respect what came before that helped what exists now to come to light.

Get that? If we didn’t have the devices and technology we had back in our day then those we’re raising now and those that have grown up with the current technology might still be doing the same things were doing as kids, and the world wouldn’t have moved on for better or worse. There’s an increasing gender gap that’s existed for a long time between generations, it’s there and it’s best to just acknowledge it. But overall, it’s best to also remember that each generation needs the one before it to advance, otherwise there’d be no basis to draw from in creating the new and improved versions.

Just remember that young ‘uns, without you the world wouldn’t keep moving forward, but with out those of us that have been there, you wouldn’t have been given the chance.

On Your Own (part VII)

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February 3rd, 2020

“I want you to know this is nothing personal.”

The eyes of the woman that tracked her as she moved from where she’d tied her unwitting victim off to a nearby tree didn’t make it seem as though she believed her. The woman was scared to death, that much was obvious. But seeing as how she and the others, there were seven of them in total, four crew members for the ship and three guests that had chartered the boat for a three-day outing that had taken them to several islands already before they’d come here.

She hadn’t known just how far she was from the mainland, but now she had a very good idea. The woman had told her that it had taken roughly three to four hours to reach this site, and that it was considered to be one of the more remote islands that people enjoyed visiting. This time of year though a lot of people avoided the islands due to the rainy season and the storms that were known to come through the area.

What information she’d gotten out of the woman before she’d gagged her with a strip of cloth torn from her shorts had been that the other people on the boat would be expecting her back soon. That was okay, it added to the effect if she wasn’t. She wanted them all to eventually wander onto her little place of isolation, to make them feel how it felt to be on their own and possibly left without anyone to come help.

She really wanted the man that had left her here to feel that way though. There was a special place she had in store for him.

In a way she felt as though she’d gone a bit psychotic, but it felt justified all the same. Looking once more at the frightened and tightly bound woman she made her way towards the shoreline where the boat was moored, Patch hot on her heels.

(to be continued)

Broken and Left (part VII)

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March 5th, 2018

Thankfully Sal had a full tank of gas and kept his truck, an old Chevy, perhaps a ’77 or a few years later, in good shape. He’d added a few things and perhaps even upgraded here and there, but otherwise it felt pretty authentic. Turning on the radio he switched over to an oldies rock station, enjoying the tunes as he kept the window down and his mind on his final goal.

He knew just where the men that had beaten him were, he knew where they would likely be, and he knew very well that if they had any sense they’d expect him to be making his way back. They were stupid enough to leave him alive but beaten, but he had a hunch that their boss wanted a final go at him before punching his ticket for the final time. That was just fine, he had one stop to make before he got to the Strip and then he’d be making his final house call before leaving the state.

Inhaling through his nose he had to grimace as the bruised ribs he’d incurred ached from the effort, reminding him that it had only been a day since his beatdown. That was okay, the pain that should have left him all but crippled was keeping him going, keeping him sharp. Of course that was the adrenaline rush too, and it would wear off eventually, but before it did he meant to at least get to the one hidey hole bordering good old Las Vegas before he passed out for the night.

If he had a concussion then he should be in the clear by now, he hoped. Last night had gone just fine and he’d woke easily enough. The other injuries were likely worse, a mashed-up left hand that didn’t matter as much, a couple of fingers broken on his right hand that could be splinted, and his ribs of course. But thankfully there was nothing else but cuts, abrasions, a couple of gashes, and a lot of deep bruising that would heal on its own eventually.

It took about as long as he’d figured, close to an hour, before he reached the outskirts of Vegas, and it took another twenty minutes to get to his cache, as it was located in a storage bin at a point between Vegas and Henderson. Keying in his code to get into the gated storage area he drove Sal’s truck right up to his unit, a spacious, apartment-sized storage locker he’d been renting for the past few years. Shutting off the engine he made his way over to the lock, thumbing the hidden catch that was his backup in case he ever lost his key.

It took one good yank to send the door rattling upwards and along its track, exposing the well-ordered mayhem that was ready and waiting.

“Home sweet home,” he muttered, grinning to himself as he stepped into the storage locker.

(to be continued)

You Want Equality for Everyone, Own It

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Article after article, video after video, and one opinionated person after another have gone over and over this when it comes to equality between men and women. We want it, there’s no doubt. But if we want it, then some folks, not everyone, are going to have to realize that equality comes with a heavy price.

Women and men won’t be able to perform certain biological functions the same way, this isn’t how things work and that’s obvious. But when it comes to educational opportunities, workplace opportunities, and life opportunities, things do need to be equal.

But what happens if a woman can’t perform the same kind of work as a man? What happens if a man can’t do as good a job as a woman? The answer should be pretty simple, they get paid based on experience and the job they do. There are of course a lot of varying factors that will go into each side of the debate, such as who is taking care of the children, if there are any in the equation, and therefore can’t work long hours. Who is willing to work those longer hours, who makes what choice when it come to their education, career, and who will seek out the more high-paying jobs.

This isn’t something that should spark the kind of debate but it does since people want to know why women don’t seem to gravitate towards the jobs that are paying more. It’s very simple, if you can do the work then you can get the same pay. If you can’t do the work then no one is going to say “oh of course I understand, I’ll let the other person work themselves to the bone and pay them less so that you can get the same amount for doing less work”. Sorry, doesn’t work that way.

One of the biggest concerns ladies isn’t that you’ll supplant men. We want you there, we want the help, and we want you on equal ground with us, since quite honestly this is how things work the best. But we want to know that you’re not going to demand things be handed to you in an unbalanced manner that you didn’t earn. Men need women just as much as women need men, we can’t pretend otherwise and be honest. But if we’re going to be equal, stand up and take your share of the load, and let’s work from that point forward. Anything else needs to be figured out as we go so that things can remain equal, not so one side can cherry-pick what they want and toss out what they don’t.

You want to be equal, own that statement. Otherwise you’re asking for favoritism.

Cops, A Very Tricky Issue

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This isn’t a liberal or conservative issue to be honest, since both sides have been pretty rough on the men and women in blue throughout the years and the vitriol these protectors have received isn’t always earned. Do some of them deserve to be stripped of their badges? Certainly, there are always a few bad elements in any group that are bound to make the others look bad through their actions.

But the idea of labeling all cops as bad and as tools of a fascist government is not just asinine, it’s borderline dangerous. Those that bother to call cops fascists and racist are the same people that tend to call for the police the quickest when they’re being assaulted or somehow maligned. And what can the cops do but their job? They’re here for everyone, not just those that they feel are worth the trouble. While there are those that have done some pretty horrible things in the past, both long ago and recent, they aren’t the entire police force. Their actions aren’t enough to condemn an entire police force that is there to protect and serve the people.

I’ll be one of the first to say I don’t care for cops, as my own issues with authority are kind of broad and keep me from truly liking anyone just because they were the uniform. But by and large I can easily respect those cops that are out there doing their best each and every day to protect the citizens and make sure that they’re safe. They have an unenviable job that they selected, to keep people from harming one another and uphold the laws of the land.

Some of them get a bit out of hand at times and go too far, this is the unvarnished truth. But the majority of cops are there to protect and serve the people, not harass and harm people needlessly. Think on this when you see a cop, they might be decent folks, or they might be someone with an inferiority or superiority complex just waiting for a person to pop off. Whatever they are, they’re bound by the laws just as much as you are, but they’re job is a lot harder.

These are things to think about for those that enjoy catcalling police officers. Be grateful they’re bound by law to protect you.

A ‘Good’ Education

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When it comes to education everyone is different, this has been proven over and over throughout generations of students that have gone on to do great things or have failed miserably and blame everyone else for the way their lives turned out. Of course there are those that figured that education didn’t do much for them, and those are usually the saddest cases since the educational system is there to help people learn how to open their minds, not tell them how to use it.

Now you might be thinking that the latter part is at least partly untrue and you’d be right. It’s imperative to show and tell students how to use their own imaginations and their own through processes to do what they want. But all in all it’s more important to teach someone how to step outside the box and let them peer around for a while than to keep them firmly ensconced in the system and force them to repeat verbatim everything that’s been dished out to them. Some people actually learn this way, while others need the freedom to expand and really see all their options before they decide to commit to anything.

There are many goals of education, but learning is the core principle and the one thing that will distinguish a success from a failure. There are such things as a ‘good’ and ‘bad’ education, but the only real distinction between the two is whether or not you’ve been told to think for yourself or if you’ve been require to think in the manner that the people in charge want. The more you think for yourself, the more you’re bound to learn.

Clean Energy Blues

“Renewable doesn’t always equate to sustainable.”

-Anonymous

There are a host of good things to say about renewable, clean energy that make it sound like it should be the wave of the future and the direction that we should be headed in as a nation. Lately Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the firebrand of the Democratic party, has been all over this subject when it comes to making the nation a better place and finding ways to produce energy that won’t be harmful to the environment. It’s very easy to applaud her efforts but it’s also easier, especially if you’ve been on the labor side of this issue, to find at least a few flaws in her thinking.

It might be possible to switch to renewable energy in 10 years time, but the sacrifices and the overwhelming competition that remains to stymie these efforts aren’t going to just up and go away no matter how much people want them to. That’s a minor thing to those that speak of renewable energy as we’re reminded daily of the environmental cost of using the forms of energy we have now. But then again, what kind of energy do you think is expended to make these new and renewable forms of energy?

The solar panels have to be built, fabricated, and then shipped out to buyers. The wind turbines have to be manufactured, sent out, and then maintained. Also take into account the production lines that are in place for just these two types of energy, each and every one of them uses energy that is usually found to come from fossil fuels.

Then let’s get into the jobs that are created as AOC seems to think will happen. It’s true, some companies that experience rapid growth will begin to hire on more and more people to perhaps stimulate the economy. But once again, you’re still using more and more fossil fuels in order to accommodate an expanding workplace for these people. In a way it’s almost like trying to stay clean in a mud pit while refusing to look at what you’re standing in.

She has good motives, there’s no doubt of this, but the loss of jobs that would result in switching over from fossil fuels to renewable energy, the amount of money it would take to fund the switch, and the uncertain promise that there would be jobs aplenty once the switch is made is not much of a guarantee that it would be much better. On top of that, the fact remains that many still tend to believe that renewable energy is not quite as sustainable, yet, as what’s in place now.

It’s a good idea, but one has to wonder if she’s thought it all the way through yet.

Learn to Scroll, Not Troll

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I’ve commented on this at least once before but it seems time to refresh the matter and remind people that even on the internet there’s something called etiquette and there are things that you just don’t do. Being an internet troll is fairly easy, all you do is go in and start a ruckus for no better reason than your own personal gain or just to start trouble.

Why would anyone do this though?

Well, some folks are just bound and determined to be as irritating and annoying as possible, and then there are people that mean well but upon being challenged start causing as many problems as they can in order to ‘get back’ at those with any opposing viewpoint. It’s easy to accuse someone of being a troll, especially if you enter an argument that’s base more on opinion than actual fact. But if you want to identify a troll vs. an actually decent person, keep these things in mind:

-a troll is there for their own amusement and won’t give a damn about those on the thread. If they’re just trying to cause trouble with no discernible reason then it’s likely that they’re a troll. A good example is someone that enters a thread with a derogatory statement about the article or someone that’s replied to it. Looking to cause trouble from the start is the sign of a troll.

-those that simply come on and add nothing to the discussion save for remarks that are way off base and don’t contribute anything positive are often trolls. If you can show at least some respect, even to those with opposing viewpoints, then you’ve hit troll status and might need to check yourself. Not your privilege, but your attitude.

-trolls love to cause trouble online since a lot of them might have more than one account that they can flip back to if they catch too much heat on the one they’re using. These types of trolls are kind of hard to spot since they absolutely live for the mayhem and won’t ever say anything nice unless they think there’s something in it for them.

It’s very easy to confuse a person that has general concerns about a subject or will be open to discussion with a troll, especially if you’re the type that doesn’t want to be open and talk about things in a rational manner. So the next time you think you’re talking to an internet troll, try and have a reasonable discussion with them, you’ll find out rather quickly who’s who.

Yes, The Wage Gap Again

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Not only is paying someone less for the same job illegal, but the gap is actually a lot smaller than people seem to think. Why is this? Well, it has to do with education, career choice, lifestyle choice, and a host of other things that too many people tend to forget on a regular basis since they’d rather sit around shouting about how sexist it is to pay a woman less than a man.

Equality doesn’t simply mean getting paid as much as a man, it also means taking on the same responsibilities, job-wise, that men do. Sorry ladies, the education you gain and the skills and experience you acquire do deserve recognition, but until you’re willing to undertake the same risks and work the same hours as a lot of men in the fields that are considered to be high-paying this gap might continue to be a reality.

On one hand there are professions that aren’t paid enough for the type and amount of work they do, such as social workers, early childhood education teachers, and a few other professions that are dominated by women. On the other hand, if a woman makes her way into a male-dominated field then it’s imperative that she be able to work the same hours and take the same risks as those men that are perceived to be getting more than women without deserving it.