Thursday, June 19, 2008


Today is Juneteenth. Go to the website for more specific information, but basically, on June 19, 1865, in Galveston, Texas, the last African American slaves were officially recognized as free citizens. Now obviously, there were still problems. Many slaves at that time had no land, no possessions, no connections except those with their former owners, but many modern African Americans recognize this as their own Independence Day.

I just wanted to remind those of us here in the U.S. that while our constitution contains some worthy and high ideals, we have a long way to go before we reach them. I think we've made wonderful progress. I'm so glad I live now and didn't live then, but I still sometimes wonder how long it will be before we truly recognize the basic rights that we have claimed pertain to every human. Anyway, happy Juneteenth!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Fathers Day Miscellany

So, yesterday being Fathers Day, I went to an LDS ward with my hubby to show support. The opening hymn was "O My Father" which used to be one of my favorite hymns. Sure enough, at the last verse, I started crying and couldn't make it through the rest of the song. I sat there confused at my reaction and wondered if maybe I should give the church another try. The youth speaker spoke about obeying her dad (which is a generally good idea, within reason) and then the next speaker got up. She was young (approximately my age, give or take a couple of years) and was talking about how to honor, respect and otherwise kiss your husband's ass. She spewed the most disgusting patriarchal vomit that I've heard in a while. Her talk was full of archaic bullshit about how women shouldn't give their husbands too much trouble and assumptions that the husband would be the only bread winner in the family and so should be especially pampered. Ick, ick, ick. Her husband's talk was slightly more redeemable in that he spoke about not exercising unrighteous dominion, but it was still based on the idea that she should defer to him. I don't think either one of them even tried to touch on the equal partner language in the Family Proclamation (even thought that document has its own vomit issues). Suffice it to say that I left upset (although I tried to contain it since I didn't want to ruin hubby's day). Hubby simply found it amusing, because he knows how much it bothers me and thought that it was ironic that they would say those things on the one day I chose to come. Anyway, it was a nice reminder about why I was keeping my distance.

On to other Fathers Day stuff. I will now do a tribute to my own father. My dad is a pretty good guy in general. And we've definitely had our times when we didn't see eye to eye. In high school, when I was at my most zealous, I had no use for anything that my agnostic father wanted to tell me. As I look back now, I realize that even though my father's politics are generally conservative (as are his views of what married women should do), the things he tried to tell my sister and I about being independent were pretty much spot on, and I should have listened to him a lot more. He still annoys me at times, I still get angry at him sometimes, but I'm also finally learning to appreciate some of the things he says. So, here's to you, Dad. I love you.