Category Archives: media

Help stop bullying Pt. 1-The time to talk is now!

Photos from "Stop Bullying Now! One Mile Fun Walk"
Photos courtesy of: Mental Health America of NE Florida

According to Gayle Eckerd, CEO of River Point Behavioral Health, “Bullying among our children and adolescents has become an epidemic and something needs to be done now.”

To stop an epidemic, there is often a source where a treatment can be implemented and then spread out from there. But, with bullying, each and every case is different because it is not only dealing with the victim of bullying but also the person or persons behind the act of bullying. It is also looking at what is causing this person to act out in this way and we also must ask a few questions; Why is this becoming such a growing problem? What is bullying? Where does the problem of bullying begin? Who is responsible to address these concerns?

The first question to address is the last one. Who is responsible to address these concerns? We all are. This is a concern for everyone to not only realize but to be part of the overall solution. The first thing to recognize is the problem. Look around. Bullying is not something that only happens on the school playground or during playgroups at the park. It is not something that is happening only amongst our young people. This is a problem in homes with siblings, at school within all age groups. Bullying is a problem within the workplace, within our political system, between parents, between parents and their children and the lists go on. What happens is, it isn’t always considered bullying and therefore the issue is getting beyond our grasp and out of control. But, it isn’t beyond help.

Preparing for the walk, everyone can be part of the solution to stop bullying.

In today’s world, anyone who wants to bully someone else can do so in a buffet of places and even without ever showing their face. Once a person becomes aware of the problem bullying has become in our society, it becomes hard to avoid or overlook this issue. The problem is so many people have begun to accept it as a way of life or have learned to overlook it until the problem becomes unavoidable or irreversible. Too many people are getting physically, mentally and emotionally hurt and many are committing suicide over it or living in silence and unspeakable pain on the verge of a meltdown. But, there is help.

Everyone who participates, tells someone else and the word spreads...
that's a good sign!

On Saturday, May 21st, Riverpoint Behavioral Health in Jacksonville, Florida joined forces with Mental Health America of Northeast Florida to organize the “1st Annual Stop Bullying Now! One-Mile Fun Walk” to raise awareness in their community and beyond.

With 200-250 walkers and their tremendous success, this is one of the most powerful ways to make a difference in the battle against bullying. They are reaching out to the younger generation, their friends and families, starting necessary conversations and letting it be known that it is not only okay to talk about bullying but also making it known that bullying against anyone, for any reason, at any age is never okay!

Studies have shown 15-25% of students report being the victim of bullying while 15-20% of students report they engage in bullying. These reported numbers are often low due to victims’ fear of retribution keeping them from coming forward.

Bullying is a form of abuse and can have immediate and long-term effects.

Recently, as seen on the news, reports of suicides have been on the increase due to bullying. Young people who are victims of bullying are more likely to drop out of school, abuse drugs and/or alcohol, have mental health disorders such as depression, eating disorders, self mutilation, thoughts of suicide, anxiety, etc.

Youth who bully are more likely to engage in violence, get involved in gangs, criminal behavior and become abusers as adults. These traits can often effect the next generations as well.

Mental Health America of Northeast Florida has been working to raise awareness of this epidemic of bullying in our country beginning with our local communities. With sponsors like, River Point Behavioral Health who paid for this event, allowing all proceeds to go the Mental Health America of Northeast Florida for their amazing work in not only this event but also working within schools and summer camps, this is an amazing example of what can be done to stop bullying, prevent bullying and everyone can be involved.

Mental Health America of Northeast Florida has found the necessary treatment is to not only treat the victim but also those that feel the need to bully. There is very often a reason behind the bullying but also to get people talking and raise awareness to this growing problem.

Take time to listen. Take time to talk. Talk about bullying.

The more people who get involved and the more help made available, the better the chances for everyone.

In this series of articles, I’ll share different stories from people who have had their lives affected from bullying in one way or another. The only way to effectively stop bullying is to show its hiding places, bring them out into the open and let people know the best thing to do is speak up and get the necessary help when needed. Let people know it is okay to say they need help because they are not alone.

What many people see as harmless fun is very hurtful and has long-term effects to others. This is bullying. This is causing many people a lost childhood, lifelong trauma, physical harm and as we are learning it is more often leading to suicide. This has to stop. It must stop now.

See the signs, read the warnings and act. Don't ignore what is right in front of you.




The first story is something that is horrible and should be unheard of but it is a situation that very much needs to be recognized for what it is.





This is about a young lady that had been bullied by not only one person but multiple people. She was bullied to the point of victimization in both a medical facility and her family environment. She is disabled and required help for much of her daily care.

During what should have been a 5-day admission to a hospital for medical testing for a diagnosis, she was instead bullied, made fun of, called names and left in unsanitary conditions. In the end, due to the lack of care from the medical staff, the correct tests had not been done which led to a long delay of the correct diagnosis. She said, ““It was an awful experience; the mental games were terrifying and I was stuck there because they did not want to discharge me.”

At the hands of her family, where she should have felt the most secure, cared for and loved, she was instead bullied most by her siblings until she was later sent to live with other relatives. There, she was often left alone as a live-in babysitter, neglected for her own daily medical needs and left to fall into the hands of a family friend who raped her.

When she couldn’t take anymore and tried to leave, she was locked in a room, slammed against the wall, unable to use a phone or a bathroom until she eventually crawled out a window and escaped. Yes, escaped. She said, “You hear about human trafficking nowadays, but that was kind of the case, even within my own family.”

At the time, this woman was wheelchair bound. Since getting better care after these experiences, this has changed. She has chosen to remain anonymous for very clear reasons.


The second story is about Lynda in Parkersburg.

Lynda’s has quite a different side of things. At first, in middle school, Lynda was having a lot of troubles at home and this led to troubles at school. During her 8th grade year, Lynda ran away.

This ended up getting her moved to another relative’s home and also to a new school. The kids at the new school didn’t treat her too well, in fact, they were just mean. She was poked, tripped, had her books knocked out of her hands and threatened about showing up places outside of school. So, she decided to just stay quiet and stay to herself.

In the 9th grade, she moved back in with her grandparents and returned to her old school. However, she had taken on a new attitude. She was loud, mean and a bully now. She wasn’t going to be picked on anymore. She took things to a new level you could say. Name calling and harassing was an everyday part of her demeanor and she’s sure she made the daily lives of some of her classmates a living hell.

“So many things that I look back on in shame,” Lynda says, “I cannot believe the intolerance that I showed back then.”

Now Lynda has her own children and would she never want to see them be bullied”, but she says, “I cannot stomach the thought of one of my kids being the bully.”

Lynda is making this known to help stop bullying.

Many people are stepping forward in efforts to help stop bullying. Below are some excellent links to visit for information on how you can speak with children, friends, coworkers or reach out for help.

Please feel free to comment on your experiences with bullying and how it has affected your life as well. Together, we can help in the effort by sharing information, speaking up, getting help and bringing an end to bullying in our own local communities which will prevent more victims and help save lives from the hurt or worse, from the loss of life. Please pass this along and keep an eye out for part 2 of this series.


AHMIR ANTI-BULLYING VIDEO – “Perfect”
Purchase this song on iTunes and 20% of the proceeds will be donated to the Make Laughter Count foundation (an organization that brings comedians & entertainers together to increase awareness about bullying and raising funds for charities)




SEE PART 2 OF THIS TOPIC



Help stop bullying Pt. 2 – Bullying effects everyone




Please see links below and feel free to share comments below.



StopCyberBullying.org

TakeAStand.StopBullying

ItGetsBetterCampaign

StopBullying.gov

PeaceBuilders.com

TheTrevorProject.org

WelcomingSchools.org

Let’s Move.gov

Teach for America

MakeLaughterCount

Not just a story

Our world is under a constant change. That is a given. Those who try to stop change or stand in the way of progress are slowly being rooted out.
That is certainly being seen across the Middle East as they continue to fight for their freedom of speech, equalities and the ability to finally be out from under the unspeakable acts of cowardly dictators that have ruled over them for decades.

As each day passes, bravery becomes more evident because to share the turmoil going on in places such as Egypt, Syria, Libya, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, it literally means risking arrest or even one’s life. Making a phone call, sending a picture, a tweet, updating a blog or even carrying on a conversation on the street or anywhere in public can cost a person their life on the spot or have them detained, tortured, or kidnapped leaving their family to wonder whatever became of them. This is not something that is exaggerated or made up. This is life for the people of these countries and has been for decades.

Most reporters sent in are there under government watch and only go places with government permission, in government convoys and to places the governments wants them to see. Example of this is in Tripoli’s famous Rixos Hotel where a large group of reporters have stayed and covered Libya’s conflict for an ongoing amount of time. This is where Iman Al Obaidi ran in to share her story of what happened while she was held by Gaddafi’s soldiers. Her story became internationally known once it was shared by worldwide news organizations and across social media websites. This became possible only because she risked her life to go into that hotel in the first place.

Other reporters have been thrown out of Libya and other countries for sharing too much of the truth as well as having been detained, beaten, raped or are still missing or or have been killed.

To name just a few, Chris Hondros, Tim Hetherington, Mohammed Al-Nabbous, Anton Hammerl were killed just recently. These are just a few and are just naming ones killed in Libya.

Why do “outsiders” risk their lives to share these “stories”?

I’ll answer this question very directly so as to be very clear.

These aren’t just stories, this is life. Just because I am an American writing about people that are living all the way around the world, doesn’t make this any less relevant than if I were writing about something locally, not to me.

You see, these people in many ways are just like me. They have hopes, dreams, families, loved ones, and friends.

Rebel fighters at the Wazin Border Crossing(Tunisia and Nafusa Mountains) May11th
Photo Courtesy of: @ShababLibya

A mother losing her child or a child losing their parents somewhere else in the world is just as upsetting as if that happened here, or to me. A friend watching their friend die is no less painful because it is further away or because it is in a time of war. Many of those fighting in these current revolutions are students, lawyers, doctors or young kids. Most are not soldiers and had never held a weapon before in their life. They are protecting their homes, businesses, families and their lives. They didn’t want to fight. They don’t want to fight. They want to be free which is the opposite of fighting.

As an American, I want our government to be able to help, of course.

I also know that many times, U.S. involvement comes with a cost and although at first glance and in a time of crisis, it seems great and the right thing to do when making arrangements but the long term effects, due to diplomatic arrangements made to reach that original agreement, often far outweigh the long term benefit. Doesn’t sound right, does it?

Let me explain. Iraq and Afghanistan.

The need for help is there and the desire to help is there but the actual response and outcome is often so jumbled up in politics, the RSVP would have been better to have been lost in the mail.

Some situations are so clear, up front, one would think there wouldn’t be any issues. One would think.

In Libya, Gaddafi was making it abundantly clear that he had no problem with taking as many lives each day as he could without any given reason. He also made it clear he wasn’t listening to reason. Once the UN came to an agreement and NATO started its response against Gaddafi’s crimes against his own people, it wasn’t as quick of a process as it would have once been thought.

At this point, it seems communication on the ground (what little there is) doesn’t get heard by the right people, quickly enough. I personally think if it were, Gaddafi would have been cut off much quicker.

Syria has tried to hide what is going on in their country but they haven’t been able to do this, not completely. The government says one thing and does another. It seems they want to act like Iran, dress like Iran but not be treated like Iran. When do threats from the U.S. end? Syria’s government has clearly chosen its path.

In Yemen today, President Saleh refused to sign the exit deal to hopefully bring an end to the political crises. Saleh has ruled for 32 years.
For months now, Yemen has been filled with protests for him to step down. Hundreds have been killed and he has refused to sign a deal at least twice before.

Saleh is demanding the opposition be present at the signing. The opposition refuses saying it will send the wrong message to the revolution leaders in Sanaa, making Saleh look victorious.

The opposition signed their part of the agreement on Saturday, May 21st with the understanding Saleh would sign his on Sunday.
About Saudi Arabia…this is a country with a great deal of oppression toward women.

I am a woman. I drive. Recently Manal Al Sharif was arrested for doing exactly the same thing in the eastern town of Khobar, Saudi Arabia which defies a long standing ban on women’s driving. Yeh, that’s right.

Manal Al Sharif 32 year old Saudi Arabian woman detained for driving in Saudi Arabia

It’s said that about two-thirds of a woman’s salary goes toward their transportation. They can’t walk on the street or drive so they must pay a taxi or private driver. There’s no public transportation.

On June 17th, there’s a campaign #Women2Drive which is growing in numbers on their Facebook page. The idea is for those women, with foreign licenses, to go out in the Kingdom of Saudi and drive that day. Some are even offering to teach others how to drive. Manal Al Sharif remains detained at this moment but in an interview to Gulf news she said, “Every lady has something to do in the city, she’ll just drive, do her business and come back. So it’s as simple as that. People can’t call it a demonstration, we’re not going against the law, we’re not going against anyone, we’re not even demonstrating.”

I was going to divide this article into two parts but I think it’s important to keep it as one.

You see, as a nation, we have an enormous amount of freedoms. I am writing this article which I will shortly post because I have the freedom to do so. I have the ability to share the information which I freely read about on the Internet or via links that were sent to me. Information is golden.

Education is priceless. The ability to have those available to us should never be taken for granted.

In many parts of our world, these freedoms or abilities do not exist. Our freedoms were fought for by very brave people before us and to take anything at all for granted, to me, just seems wrong. It also seems wrong to take lightly why others would want these same freedoms as well as the loss of lives they are experiencing while fighting for their freedom.

Many have chosen to come here, to the U.S., seeking a better life for themselves and their children. Around the world, America has been known as the “Land of the Free”, but is it? Do we truly know where these people are coming from, why they are seeking freedom and can they still find it here? In coming here, they have often made many sacrifices leaving behind the only homes they have ever known and family members to still live under dictators and the very life they are running from.

It’s been a while since I have written. I’ve been following much of what has been going on around the world, devastating natural disasters, revolutions and our own nation and its many ups and downs.

I hadn’t planned to write quite yet until I read a comment about the woman in Saudi, Manal, who had been arrested for, driving. The comment was basically along the lines of the fact the reader would never live in a place that wouldn’t allow a woman to drive!

My question: What if you were born there?

America’s best days are ahead

"Sea to Shining Sea"
Photo by: dgroup

In our homes, our neighborhood schools, local businesses, communities and across our nation there have been conversations about the need for improvements in many areas of day to day life and the future of America.

Although when traveling through American cities or the rural communities which link our nation together, things may appear at first glance to be different, most Americans have the same basic needs in life and many share the same values and goals; family, home and having a better future for their children.

However, it’s not the differences within these communities that bring the divide to the nation. The diversity of cultures, religions and race have made America a nation that stands out unlike every other country in the world. These differences however can also be used as a tool to bring weakness and divide.

Many issues our country continues to face have come about through history and in instances, such as slavery, laws have been enacted after many lives were lost and many injustices were carried out but also heroes came to the forefront of our American culture to show that good can triumph over evil if people are willing to get involved and stand up for what is right even when it may not be popular or have anything to gain for them personally or may possibly bring them physical harm even costing their life.

Through history, lessons can be learned and the worst possible thing to do would be to revert back to old ways or act as though they never happened.

History should never have to repeat itself to prove wrong doesn’t make right and to again show one human is not above another human, not by race, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity or economic standing.

Instead, as American and World History are taught in our schools, it should include the fact these lessons in history can and should be what makes America a stronger nation and each culture and religion represented in America should be the ties that bind us as an even greater, more unique nation of the future with goals that represent our strengths and ambitions and look out for the humanity of everyone across our nation.

On Saturday, January 8th our nation suffered a tremendous tragedy in Tucson, Arizona when a 22 year old man opened fire at a shopping center, shooting a U.S. Representative, a Federal Judge, and 9 year old girl as well as countless others in a few short moments. In the end, 20 people were shot and 6 lost their lives including one of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ aides, Gabe Zimmerman, Federal Judge – John Roll, Dorwan Stoddard – who used his body to shield his wife from being killed, Dorothy Morris – who was there with her husband of 55 years, also shot but survived, Phyllis Schneck – a loving mother and grandmother who loved her community, and Christina Green – a 9 year old who wanted to meet her Congresswoman and someday participate in Government.

The news of this horrific event ripped through the media on TV, radio, online social media, etc. causing a great deal of grief, confusion, anger, unity, memories, panic, just so many different emotions.

An outpouring of prayers and wishes poured out across America for the families of the victims and those who had suffered injuries and were being rushed to nearby hospitals. So many questions were being asked but there were very few available answers.

Different news agencies were trying to gather facts and at times, there were reports coming in and then being reversed due to wrong information. There was also a great deal of information coming in that was being driven by emotion and reaction but not backed up by facts because the shooter hadn’t talked nor had enough time passed to give investigators an opportunity to put together the facts.

What happened in Tucson, Arizona is an inexcusable tragedy and by no means can be something that defines who America is but what America, as a nation, is not.

For those who used their media outlet and time before this awful event to campaign Americans against Americans will hopefully see America is a United Nation. For those who look at our nation as citizens against their government, America is a civilized democracy.

People can have different ideas, different goals and debates but as a people, Americans should be looking out for the good of one person as much as for the good of another person, one family as much as for the good of another family.

Americans should look past each other’s party, race, religion, Ethnicity and to each other’s goals, ideas, needs and future and see it as America’s future, their future.

America’s best days are ahead. It is within this great nation, our great nation to accomplish what is needed to move forward and to move ahead into the future. The idea is to work alongside each other and alongside other nations, to draw on our strengths and not focus on the weakness of others.

Our nation is made up of our people, all of our people and for America to truly be as great as it can be, our nation must unite and work together for the common goals of everyone.

As different as many may be, that is also our strength when used correctly and for the right purpose.

In the face of tragedy, unity is often seen, but everyday unity can be shown.

Examiner link

How much does the media and Hollywood influence voters’ decisions?

It seems campaigns never end but at some point they do. The fact there are 24 hour news outlets just means more coverage of more politics which is why it appears to be a never ending topic. Now, it is back to election time and campaigning time which has brought back candidates, polls, commercials, and everything campaigning tends to bring along. But, not everyone is complaining. If there was a 12-Step-Program for political junkies, there would be plenty of people there to fill the spots (point taken).

With everyone speaking out and campaigning for either their favorite candidate or situation backed by either political party, people from singers and movie stars, talk show host and comedians, past politicians and even religious leaders are stepping up to share their views. The fact is these are influential people giving their opinions and ideas on subjects and people that can really make a difference. But, have they checked the facts on the people they are referring voters to or the subject they are speaking on? Even if they aren’t saying directly, “Vote for this person” the fact is, if they just come out and sing at a fundraiser or a campaign event, appear at a rally or make a commercial, their words or show of support is being seen, remembered and taken note of.

Whether or not this should change the direction of a candidate’s political future, it often does. Should it change a voter’s opinion of a candidate? As a voter, there are campaign commercials that run throughout any campaign cycle in which the sole purpose is to influence the voter’s decision. The candidates have rallies, meetings and different gatherings to make speeches and answer questions to give voters an overall perspective of what they plan to do if they are to win the election. However, what they say is not written in stone. It is to influence the voter’s decision. Ultimately, the choice is up to each voter. The responsibility of finding out the facts is up to each individual voter. The ballot cast is a personal decision that comes down to one person’s decision, the voter’s. It is cast in private. Voting is not only a right but a responsibility. Many of the things voted on now will be in effect for many years to come. What will the votes of today be remembered for?

This article can be viewed on the Examiner.com page where the entire article is posted. Become a subscriber when new articles are released.

What gain or loss has social media brought to a political candidate?

With elections going on across the country, campaigning is again in the local media, mainstream media and across the social media. Around the nation people are talking, debating, discussing, tweeting, texting and blogging about politics. In 2008 the U.S. had one of the biggest elections ever and the fact was whether Barack Obama or John McCain won, CHANGE was happening in America.
The “winds of change” are often difficult for people to get used to or work with but the fact is times are always changing and people are always growing and reinventing themselves. Look around. A person’s day to day life has taken on a new look. For example, the daily newspaper is becoming more digitalized and turning to online editions. This allows a reader the ability to have continuously updated information. The ability to communicate worldwide has completely changed with new mobile gadgets and high speed internet ability as well as social media. People are “plugged in”. Change happens.

With elections coming up and campaigns seeming to never really end, politicians have turned to social media as well as their constituents using their own social media circles to reach out to millions of people on a daily basis, not always trying to spread a message but often just trying to keep their candidate of choice in the headlines and being discussed. Social Media has been one of the biggest changes that have come along and those who understand how to use it both in a good way or a negative way can certainly make a difference in a campaign.

The question is, are they spreading a relevant and truthful message as well as something they will stand behind in the coming months and years if they take office? Or, are they just trying to catch the attention of the voters, get the headlines forwarded to reach more viewers and ultimately win the largest number of votes? But with social media, another question is do their constituents know this and allow this to happen? Do they become part of the process by pushing their candidate’s messages in the social media outlets while sometimes knowing the message may not be completely factual or actually promoting lies just to promote their party of choice?

Social media can spread the message of a candidate over night and help them gain political points while at the same time, spread a message of half truths or lies but through the same process this tool can be used to hold a candidate responsible for sticking to the facts during a campaign and long after.

What spreads through the internet often comes back later to hold a candidate responsible but also those that put the message in the media to begin with. Some things never change and one of those things is that one’s words can come back to haunt them and social media just means that more people have seen, heard or watched a message or video and will be able to pull that up again at a later date. A person’s words or a person’s message should be something they want their name attached to for a very long time.

View article on the Examiner.com page where the entire article is posted. Become a subscriber to see new articles as they are released.

Will History Repeat Itself???

Have you watched the news lately??

You really don’t have to watch the news to see how much divide is going on in our country, our world or even just in those around you.


It used to be you could say, “I don’t want to discuss religion or politics” and that would keep you out of hot water with people at your work place, neighbors or the new in-laws. Nowadays, it could be a broad range of topics. Almost anything is a hot topic or it’s going to lead straight to a heated debate.


I think there are times and places for debates and places that should be safe from debates but I also think there are ways to “debate” (actually discuss is a better word when done right). It doesn’t require an argument but it does require respecting another person’s opinion, choices, lifestyle, space, etc. and also knowing a decent amount of what you are talking about because you, yourself have taken the time to look into the subject or you, yourself have actually been through the matter at hand.


A subject came up today about gays. Yep, I am going to jump straight in, head first to one of the hottest topics that has just been drudged around for years. Because it, like many other topics seems to be just brought up as though it isn’t going to affect someone if it is going against them, their choices, their opinion or their lifestyle. It is like one of those things that are hush hush and everyone wants to talk about it but nobody wants to say they are curious enough to either ask a gay person questions about their homosexuality (I am not going to say their lifestyle or choice here because I don’t believe it is just a lifestyle or always a choice) or even think about the fact this topic, like many others, through time has been shoved behind closed doors, misunderstood and not given the proper attention it does deserve. Think about it. Is there something you didn’t understand 5 years ago, 10 years ago or 15 years ago that you do now? Maybe not something like this but something you have since looked into and wish you had earlier and not judged before you looked into the matter? I think each of us can say yes to that question. Have you heard of someone else misjudging someone and thinking, “They should really think about that or get all of the facts first.” Maybe you should read on and follow the posted links. Some things might surprise you.


Everyone has their opinion and everyone has their rights, right? When you say “everyone”, do you mean everyone or just the ones you see “eye to eye” with? I am going to look at this from a different angle. Give it a different perspective. Many things aren’t so cut and dry to be able to draw a quick opinion without putting effort into collecting facts, getting to know someone and really understanding what your part really is in the matter when it comes to casting judgment. This seems to be quite blurry for many people these days (at least from where I am standing and in a lot of what I am observing, reading and hearing). I am not just talking about mainstream media either. If I used that for the information I draw from, I would be a shallow, fearful individual. There are a lot of things that we hear daily. There are usually more than two sides to everything. Just like we have a chance to judge others, others have that chance to judge us. Ultimately, God is the judge. He is the only judge on many matters and only He knows our hearts and the hearts of others. Remember that. And on many things that have been argued over for hundreds of years, He will be the final judge on these matters too.


Throughout history there have been many times where all over the world, judging has been taken into the wrong hands. Millions of lives have been lost. Human beings have gone back and forth against each other all over the world because of race, gender, religion, sexual preference, politics, land, greed…. I could go on. It has turned into Wars. Not once, not twice, over and over. Not every war means weapons out and armies against each other either. They can be in our country, in our hometowns, in our “close knit communities”. When people see others as different or feel their views are wrong, suddenly they are the enemy and either they must change or suddenly it becomes a place of hatred, intolerance, judgment and even if it isn’t with open violence or painted signs, the message is there, the feelings are there and things can quickly get out of hand. Our young people are watching and picking up on the message we are sending out. Some people are okay with that. That is their objective and what they hope to do. I don’t feel that is the right message. To understand this, first we must look at history. So, this entry is going to be about history. I will touch on more after this entry.

The fact is that history repeats itself because we allow it to do so. If you read books from History or you listen to speeches from past Presidents… (all of them) and you look around and see what is going on in our society today, it is shameful to me.  I say that because of the fact we have the GUIDANCE of history.  We must learn from history. There have been so many lessons laid out for us but, as human beings we to have to look at each other just that way and see how history has taught us that throughout the world, judging each other hasn’t done anything but lead to death and, too many times massive destruction. Don’t get me wrong, there are times I could see where war has been necessary and in our part that has mainly been in the times of coming to another’s defense to protect rights and independence. Obviously before taking on any war, we have to know what we are standing for, who we are standing with and what we are able to do, how long and with what military man power, materials and finances.

As the years have gone on, the ease of international information has made a huge difference in our society and societies around the world. International travel has brought more and more cultures both to and from many different countries allowing people to come to the U.S. and Americans to travel abroad. The United States is a Nation that is full of diversity and has become the great culture that it is due to its diversity. No other country has this advantage of such diversity. Many times instead of this being appreciated, it is not only downplayed, it is looked down on as differences that many can’t get along with. There are of course a great amount of people that wholeheartedly enjoy the diversity in our Nation and the many positive attributes this brings.

When you are in your work place, the mall, an amusement park or the airport, if you take a moment and look around you will notice just how many people are around you. Everyone is living their own life. Everyone has their own families, their own background, their own worries, dreams, and are moving about their day as you are. Although they may not share the same religion, race, ethnic background, sexual preference, or even have many of the typical ideals set up the same way, for the most part, although we each have our difference, in many ways, we have far more in common. Other people often see you, the same way you see them, another person.

So, let’s take a look back at history and then move on from there to start moving forward.


Times change. A lot of people say, “I wish things could go back to like it was when I was growing up.” Okay, so let’s say that was during the 40’s,50’s 60’s or 70’s.


Let’s take a look back….. Many horrible things have happened. And there’s been productive and good things. Please take a chance to click on some links.

In the 40’s

*War was going on everywhere. World War II

*The Japanese attack the US base at Pearl Harbor on Sunday, December 7, 1941. In the surprise attack, more than 350 Japanese airplanes sink 12 US ships and destroy or damage more than 300 aircraft. More than 2,300 military personnel are killed and 1,100 wounded. More than 1,100 men on the battleship Arizona die and the ship sinks.

*Due to the Japanese attacks at Pearl Harbor more than 110,000 Japanese Americans (Nisei) living on the West Coast are moved inland to internment camps, some for the duration of the war. Although most were born in this country, the Nisei are designated enemy aliens who must obey travel restrictions, curfew, and contraband regulations. Many lose their homes, farms and property during this time of internment.

* In Europe we had a World War that included a Holocaust with Adolf Hitler‘s
Nazis killing over 6 million European Jews plus millions more that were considered “different” from what the leading Nazis had considered acceptable. War ravages everywhere. In the US, the draft is taking over. Gas and sugar is rationed. Women are working to replace men and keep lines of necessary war equipment rolling out. In 1944, China is in its 7th year of War and Japan is taking their kids out of school to work in factories to produce bombs and other war equipment.

*The morning of June 6, 1944, (known as D-Day) 3,000 warships carry 200,000 American and British soldiers cross the stormy English Channel and land on the heavily fortified beaches of Normandy, France, to begin a vicious battle with the German army. The Battle of the Bulge begins in December as Hitler musters 500,000 troops along the Allied front from southern Belgium into Luxembourg. In bitter cold, they push ahead 50 miles, creating a bulge in the Allied lines. By the end of January, 1945, more than 76,000 Americans have been killed, wounded or captured.

*Nearly one million men, women, and children in the Leningrad, Russia, die from starvation and cold during a two-and-a-half-year siege and blockade by German troops. 

*After considering all options, President Harry S. Truman  gives the order and on August 6, 1945, the US drops an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. In minutes, half of the city vanishes and about 200,000 people are killed or missing. Radiation reaches more than 100,000 people. On August 9, the US drops an atomic bomb on Nagasaki. In September, Japan surrenders unconditionally on board the USS Missouri.

*By the time World War II was over in 1945, nearly 300,000 Americans had been killed. In all countries about 55 million people lost their lives. And more civilians lost their lives than soldiers. In 1948, the Soviet Union blockades Berlin, Germany, trying to force the Allies out of West Berlin.








There were some good things in the 40’s as well. Aside from the fact all of the good that was done by all the good troops that fought for the freedom during World War 2 and all those at home that helped keep things going while troops were being deployed also, war time takes everyone’s effort. Here are a few of the noteworthy things that happened during that time period.






*The Social Security Administration, created by 1930s New Deal legislation, sends out its first checks.

*The Rh factor of blood is discovered.

*CBS demonstrates the first color television in New York City, and WNBT in New York City becomes the country’s first regular television station, broadcasting to about 10,000 viewers.

*Transportation expands. The first multi-lane superhighway, October 1, 1940 the Pennsylvania Turnpike opens; and the first Los Angeles freeway opens. Burma Shave roadside ads are set up along the highways.

The 1940′s brought about something that is still going very strong today, McDonald’s which originally opened in San Bernadino, California. They started small and now they are everywhere and don’t appear to be going anywhere, anytime soon.









With the good and the bad, the 40’s to me, was primarily spent fighting wars affecting nearly everyone around the world in some way.



Let’s look at the 50’s.

Well, I am going to stick as close as possible to the Home Front, the U.S. But, mind you what goes on around the world is closely tied to the U.S. in many many ways. Let’s start right at the beginning of the 50’s.






*U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin tells President Truman that the State Department is infiltrated with communists and communist sympathizers. This initiates a period of witch hunts and blacklists.






*Former U.S. State Department official Hiss is convicted of perjury and sentenced to five years in prison. He was accused of being a Soviet spy in 1948. Let the finger pointing begin.




*Julius and Ethel Rosenberg are sentenced to death for espionage against the U.S. for selling classified information about the atomic bomb to the Russians. They are executed in 1953. (Can nobody keep their mouth shut!) 






*Rosa Parks,  an African American woman, is arrested after refusing to give up her bus seat to a white person in Montgomery, Alabama. Her arrest sparks a bus boycott led by local minister Martin Luther King Jr., and sets the American civil rights movement in motion.






*North Vietnam, through the Viet Cong, begins a guerilla war against South Vietnam.






*In 1957, Arkansas Governor Orval Faubus calls the National Guard to prevent nine African American students from integrating Little Rock’s Central High School. He defies the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education.






*In 1959, Fidel Castro  installs the first communist regime in the Western Hemisphere. The U.S. will later break off diplomatic relations in 1961.










Okay, the good times of the 50’s…. I remember there were poodle skirts, fun music and some good movies, oh and Elvis! There were also advancements and some things that just stand out.






*The 22nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is passed, limiting the president to a maximum of two terms in office.










*The Brown v. Board of Education decision is handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court saying that “separate but equal” school systems are unconstitutional. An era of desegregation of schools is instituted.






*RCA introduces the first color TV sets, and NBC begins regular broadcasts in color.






*Elvis Presley  releases the first of more than 170 hit songs, “Heartbreak Hotel.”






*1958 NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, is founded and starts the Mercury Project to take the first Americans into space. (First though, animals were sent…not all flights were successful)






*American Airlines launches the jet age in the U.S. transportation industry with the first transcontinental flights with a Boeing 707 aircraft.






*Albert Sabin develops a live-virus polio vaccine that can be taken orally and offers longer immunity than the Salk vaccine.










Onto the 60’s


This is the decade I was born in and I remember learning all that went on during this decade when I was in Junior High and High School.






*U.S.-trained Cuban exiles attempt to overthrow the Castro government in Cuba with an invasion at the “Bay of Pigs.”  The invasion fails badly. It’s a major embarrassment to the Kennedy administration.






*The Berlin Wall is constructed in Germany to prevent East Berliners from defecting to the West.






*In 1962, Nelson Mandela, deputy president of the African National Congress (ANC), is arrested in South Africa for agitating against apartheid laws.






*On November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy is assassinated on November 22 in Dallas, Texas, by Lee Harvey Oswald.






*Early 1964, U.S. destroyers are allegedly attacked by North Vietnamese patrol boats in the Gulf of Tonkin. In response, President Johnson pushes through Congress a resolution allowing him to greatly increase U.S. troop levels in Vietnam. The escalation of the war begins.






*On March 7,1965  600 civil rights marchers are attacked by state and local police with billy clubs and tear gas. Only the third, and last, march successfully makes it into Montgomery.






*In New York, on February 21, 1965, Black Muslim leader Malcolm X is assassinated.






*1967 By year’s end, there are 480,000 U.S. troops in Vietnam. The U.S. begins mining rivers in North Vietnam.

*In Washington, DC, 50,000 people protest the Vietnam War at the Lincoln Memorial. Students nationwide burn their draft cards. Mohammad Ali is stripped of his boxing title for refusing to join the Army because of his Muslim faith.

*On March 16, 1968 in South Vietnam, the My Lai Massacre takes places conducted by a Unit of the US Army taking the lives of mostly women, babies and elderly ranging in ages of 1 to 82. The death toll ranges from 347 to 500 due to chaotic circumstances.






*1968 As the U.S. presidential campaign heats up, President Lyndon Johnson shocks the nation by announcing he will not seek reelection because of frustrations with the Vietnam War.






*Just before the announcement, Senator Robert F. Kennedy had entered the race. He won the critical California primary in June, but within minutes, on June 6, 1968 he was assassinated by Sirhan Sirhan.






*Martin Luther King, Jr., is assassinated at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, by James Earl Ray. Riots erupt across the U.S.






*In 1968 Pope Paul VI issues a encyclical against all artificial means of contraception. In 1970, he declares that priestly celibacy is fundamental to the Roman Catholic Church.












During the 60′s there were also some BIG happenings that the world will always remember, that many of us see in our day to day lives and other things that are still being improved upon. And, there was music! Always music!












*The Peace Corps is established by President Kennedy encouraging young people to volunteer to help third world countries. Over the years, more than 187,000 people have served as Peace Corps Volunteers in 139 countries.






*February 20, 1962 Astronaut John Glenn is the first American to orbit the earth when he goes around the earth three times and returns successfully.






*The Wal-Mart discount store in opened by Sam Walton in Arkansas.






*In May In August, 250,000 freedom marchers descend on Washington, DC, and hear Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.(Video)




*In 1963 he U.S. and the Soviet Union set up a hotline between the White House and the Kremlin to avoid communication problems that were evident in the Cuban missile crisis.






*The Beatles release their first album, “Please Please Me”.






*Russian Valentina Tereshkova becomes the first woman in space.






*July 2, 1964 The U.S. Civil Rights Act  is passed, ending legal discrimination in public places, promising equal voting rights and creating the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.






*1964 The Beatles make their U.S. television debut on “The Ed Sullivan Show.” The next morning practically every newspaper wrote that the Beatles were nothing more than a “fad,” and “could not carry a tune across the Atlantic.” They couldn’t have more wrong.






*1965 President Lyndon Johnson announces his Great Society agenda, creating Medicare and expanding his “war on poverty.” Also, the U.S. Congress passes the Voting Rights Act, attacking voting restrictions aimed at African Americans. But, Johnson refuses to raise taxes to pay for both the social programs and the Vietnam War.






*The U.S. Supreme Court, citing the Constitutional right to privacy, strikes down a Connecticut law that prohibits married couples from using birth control pills.






*January 16, 1967 In the first Super Bowl , Green Bay Packers beats the Kansas City Chiefs by a score of 35-10.






*1967 Dr. Christiaan Barnard performs the first human heart transplant operation in Cape Town, South Africa. He is assisted by Hamilton Naki, a self-taught black African surgeon who later receives an honorary degree in medicine.






*In Woodstock, NY, around 500,000 rock-and-roll fans attend three days of music, “peace and love.”






*July 16, 1969 Neil Armstrong walks on the moon during Apollo11′s mission. More than 100 million people watch on television around the world as U.S. astronaut Neil Armstrong steps onto the surface.

Let’s take a look at the final decade I am going to touch on, the 70’s.











*Vietnamization fails


The process of allowing South Vietnam to defend itself without US intervention proved to be a mistake, the 120,000 North Vietnamese soldiers stormed into South Vietnam, surprising the 6000 US troops still in the country.




*In October North Vietnam offered a compromise if Communist troops were allowed to stay in South Vietnam, it wouldn’t expel the South Vietnam government and try to reach a new agreement with them. The US agreed, and declared that peace “was at hand.” Once Nixon was re-elected, Kissinger reversed himself on the issue of troops remaining and bombing of Hanoi resumed. Kissinger Video 




*Israeli athletes taken hostage/killed at Olympics


The PLO group Black September in revenge for the 1970 defeat of Palestinian guerrillas, broke into the Olympic Village and killed two coaches and took nine hostages. It later ended in the death of the hostages and the commandos as they tried to leave the country.










* Watergate Burglary


The act that felled the President two years later, was committed in June of 1972 by five men, among them ex-FBI man G. Gordon Liddy and ex-CIA man E. Howard Hunt.








*August 8, 1974 President Richard Nixon resigns.


Once the articles of impeachment had been drawn up, Nixon was required to release more tapes, which clearly tied him to the Watergate coverup. 


President Gerald Ford later Pardons Nixon.






*1975- Lebanon civil war begins


Sparked by Christians killing a busload of Palestinians and other Muslims, the country was quickly thrown into a war between the privileged Christians and the poor Muslims.








*1975- Saigon falls to communism


America suspended its aid two years after removing it’s military forces. In April, US official ordered the remaining 1000 US citizens to evacuate to the embassy in Saigon. This lead to the now famous image of citizens climbing the ladder to helicopters to be airlifted out of the city.










*1978- Jonestown massacre


The suicide and murder of 900 people who drank cyanide in fruit-flavored drink, the leader shot himself.









*1979- The Shah flees Iran


The Ayatollah Khomeini assumes power February 11, 1979 an introduces Islamic law.






*1979- Iranian students storm the US embassy


They held 52 of the 66 people in the embassy hostage for 444 days, which helped to undermine Jimmy Carters re-election efforts in the 1980.














Then there are the accomplishments, the progress and the highlights of the 70′s….










*In December 1970, the North Tower of the World Trade Center was completed and in July 1971, the South Tower was completed.






*On January 1, 1971 the last cigarette commercial played on TV during the Johnny Carson show. On April 1st , President Richard Nixon signed the Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act.






*CT or Cat Scans were introduced in the United States during the early 1970’s



*October 1, 1971 Disney World in Orlando, Florida opens!!!






* HBO (Home Box Office) launches! 






* Nike running shoes hit the market






* First successful report of freezing mouse embryos. They actually survived after being frozen!




* Vietnam War Ends


President Nixon takes last troops out of Vietnam






* 1974- First black model on cover of a major fashion magazine.


Beverly Johnson on Vogue 






* Founding Of Microsoft


Microsoft was founded in 1975




* Betamax and VHS VCRs released  (yeah for fast forward and rewind!!)




1979- Mother Teresa Wins Nobel Peace Prize


In Stockholm Sweden, Mother Teresa is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her saint-like presence in India.

By looking back at the past 4 decades, there were many hard times, many horrible times, things that can never be forgotten or taken back, the pain never erased or hearts never mended. It seemed each decade there was a repeat of wars in different areas that all had to do with a simple disregard of life and respecting others for their differences and their own rights of religion and race for the most part.


Slavery was a big part of U.S. History during those decades we lost great leaders trying to fight for the rights of blacks simply wanting the same rights as whites. Humans are humans regardless of their race. But it took a lot to get to the point to make laws to protect those rights.


It has taken a lot of suffering and pain to get many laws on the books to protect the rights to many things that seem to be taken for granted today or even seem to be getting taken away from many. The right for equalities regardless of race, sex, religion, sexual orientation, ethnic background. Human rights are being put aside for some to allow rights for others. The word equal is simple in meaning yet large in context.


Equal: having the same privileges, rights, status, and opportunities as others.


It seems too often, time is spent looking past the good in someone to see the fault. If it is a moral issue, that is going to be in another blog. But remember Christ walked on this earth with everyone and as a Christian we are to be a witness for Christ, not a judge. We do not have a pure enough heart, or are we just enough or are we the One to be the judge.


If we don’t want history to repeat itself, then we shouldn’t behave as people have all throughout history. The choices we make today will reflect tomorrow. We are responsible for every choice we make.


We can change the present and we are in control of our choices and how we raise our kids, how we teach them is the right way to react to those around them. We can’t prepare the path for them in life but we can prepare them for the path. Self respect and respect for others, tolerance and understanding. I believe that when people understand that what is going on around the world does affect each of us and what goes on with us does affect the rest of the world, it makes the world not seem like such a big and scary place. Of course, there will always be negative people in the world, those people that are just out to destroy others. They have always been around. We know about them more due to the ease and ability for news to travel faster, the ease for International Travel and the desire by people to spread fear and chaos amongst whoever will listen to them.


The best thing to do to fight against bad in the world though is to increase the unity, confidence, communication, and raise the next generation to carry that on. In today’s world, that is more important than ever with today’s technology.

Be responsible for the information you are taking in and especially passing along. Of course with Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, etc., we have the choice to sign on or sign off. We have the choice to forward and email or delete. We have the choice to post a certain status update that is going along in Facebook or not. Before you do though, know that if you are saying something is a fact, you have checked the source. Reference it if possible with more than just the fact it has been forwarded to you. A lot of things have been started wrongly by playing along with the elementary game of “telephone” and getting the actual facts wrong. If you see a video clip of something, chances are in today’s world, the full video is out there (especially if it is political).

The Whitehouse/Russia hotline helped ease the idea of misunderstandings just like checking the facts can. Know both sides. Use multiple news sources.

Don’t be the person that says, “Don’t bother me with the facts, my mind is already made up.”

Here is a quote from Mark Twain that is growing more true each day as the media turns more to digital especially.

“If you don’t read the newspaper, you are uniformed; if you do read the newspaper, you are misinformed.” Mark Twain

So true since it takes time to print the paper, everything in today’s world can change….

More later.  Feel free to leave your thoughts. I am interested.

“Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.” Chuck Swindoll

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