What can I do?
That’s my thought tonight. There was a second “officer involved shooting” in the news today, this one in Minneapolis. Philando Castile, shot 4 times while reaching for his wallet, as ordered by officers. This after Alton Sterling’s murder yesterday in Baton Rouge.
What can I do?
Being vocal on Twitter and Facebook isn’t doing anything. It’s voicing my opinion in my own social chamber, limited to those who think mostly the way I do.
Should I be involved in Campaign Zero? I feel like if I did so, I should be involved more than just contacting my reps. Being in Seattle, all of my representatives align with the goals of the campaign, and vote as such.
I feel like I’ve spent a lot of time in the past two days angry, and sad. I saw – without audio – the video of Alton Sterling’s killing. I listened to his son breaking down on the radio, crying for his father. I saw the still image of Philando Castile, bloody shirt, and couldn’t bring myself to watch. I closed the page, and tweeted the link with angry words.
There’s a very twisted sense of relief, of luck, that I’m white, and that I’ll never fear for my life the way black men do. My son, though multi-racial, is very light skinned, and will likely easily pass as white. He will likely never fear for his life that way black men do. Injustice in the world, though, whether it will every directly affect me, my family, or my friends, angers me greatly. Anger accomplishes nothing.
I need to do something.
I have been struggling lately with the fact that I am getting older. The frivolity and freedom of youth is gone, and I am well into the adulthood of responsibility and obligation. This has lead to me thinking about death, and that one day I will no longer exist.
It’s not a pleasant thought, though it is truth and it is what happens to everyone. I can definitely become too focused on it and be crippled by fear/depression (it’s hard at times to identify which), particularly when my mind struggles at what the ‘meaning’ of it all is.
The meaning of it all is, really, to live, to enjoy life, and experience joy from anything and everything you can while you are here. To give joy to others, and allow them to give it back to you – to share joy together, and make lives better.
I have struggled with the above because I have been:
- Selfish and lazy
- More outwardly introverted in behavior than I truly am inside.
I have resolved to work on these – to wear down the selfishness and laziness and self-absorbtion; to stop at moments of egocentrism and take the time to look at what others want or need; to be more friendly, and warm, and to build better friendships, with more give-and-take and much less take-take-take.
I’ve started this morning by emulating a colleague, and when I got to the office I took the time to walk around and say good morning and smile at everyone. It felt really good. REALLY good, so much so that I am smiling thinking about it.
This, also – writing this post – is another change I am working on. I used to write often and write much, but that habit has been stagnant and aging for far too long, particularly with how much I enjoyed writing in my teens and twenties. If I am ever to succeed and writing the stories I have, to put words to the page from all the ideas in my head, to hopefully bring joy to others with my words, it starts here – in bits and pieces, daily, putting thoughts into text and eliminating the fear of my own words not matching my ideas.
Here’s a rather dark and grainy iPhone 3G picture, but you can tell it’s the same one. More info on the Valve ARG here.
I think this is a beautiful picture. She was stopping by my store to have lunch, and I snapped this while she was sitting outside reading.
I went strawberry picking with some friends on Sunday, and this cute little guy was hanging out in the patch.
I’ve been wondering if the layout of this site is in need of changing. I like the minimalist look, and haven’t found any other WordPress templates that are really minimalist in the same way at all, but what do others think of it? I won’t comment on it being too simple to keep readers’ interest, as the lack of interest would mostly be due to the infrequency of my posting. Does it suit me? Does the blog fit what perceptions my friends may have of me?
I have been sick since Tuesday this week. On Tuesday, I had congestion, a headache, then muscle aches, fever, and chills. Thankfully that was mostly gone by the next morning, except the congestion. The congestion lasted through until Thursday morning, when it progressed down to my throat, giving me a sore throat and cough, and at the end of the day, no voice. Today I still can’t talk, though I do feel a slight bit better. Not being able to talk is quite discomforting for me though. I love to talk, and I always seem to think I have something important to say or to share, especially at work. I can make some rather quiet whisper-like talk, but I’m avoiding it as much as I can in order to coax my vocal cords and throat to heal faster. I thought by now they’d be a bit better, but they really aren’t. I’ve never lost my voice due to being sick before, so I’m not sure how long is normal to be without the ability to speak. If I still can’t talk on Monday, then I’ll get worried.
I’ve downloaded Stanza onto my iPhone. It’s a great little ebook app, and free. It’s got a direct link inside the app to many ebook resources, both free and paid.
Today I’ve been using it to read an old free title, Logic by Carveth Read. It’s good to finally read up on the principles of logic and the terms and ideas within. I’ve also downloaded The Necessity of Atheism, a book surprisingly from the 50’s, it seems. It’s a little less tolerant and polite than the atheist titles popular these days, surprisingly. A good read though.
I am testing out the WordPress app for the iPhone. It seems pretty easy to use, and nicely featured. I’m still getting used to the iPhone keyboard, though. I have large hands, so it can be a challenge at times. My big thumbs often hit the space bar instead of the ‘n’. Still, I like the utility of always having access to writing and posting to the blog. Hopefully this will help me in being a productive writer.
I saw today that a facebook friend (someone I knew from high school) joined a group “i bet i CAN find 10,000,000 Christians on facebook”.
I’d like to watch it and see if they do actually get 10 million. That is less than 10% of users, and in a little under 2 months of existence the group is at 100,000 members. What leads me to doubt the possibility of it growing to 10 million is the Christians by tradition (lack of real firm belief, but raised in a Christian family and never paid attention to doubt or questioning); Christians of more extreme or fanatical sects who may not be interested in joining the group because they don’t believe the others “Christian” enough, such as Jehovah’s Witnesses; and Mormons and “Messianic Jews” who are Christian but don’t define themselves as such.
Facebook, of course, is also an international site, so I’d also wonder what percentage of users are Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, or any other of the world’s major religions.
I wonder – how many atheists would join a similar group on facebook?