Friday, July 1, 2016

How Should We Treat Those Who are Disabled by Alcohol?

   It's a scenario playing out all across America. Someone slips so deeply into drinking that they lose their job. Then, their family kicks them out of the home because they do not want to "enable" them. They do not want to be providing a place where the person can just drink and live without paying their own way. They, the family, feel that providing free housing is enabling the child. After all, if the child doesn't have to work, he won't. They feel if the child is to be handled properly, he or she must learn to be responsible for his own actions.
   Truly, we as a society don't know how to handle this situation. I, too, do not know what to do, how to handle it. But, for the sake of trying to come up with an answer, I herewith give my best shot at coming up with an answer.
   First, don't kick them out of the home. Second, not only do not kick them out of the home, but shower them with more love and affection than they have ever had. I suppose, some would say this is coddling them. Maybe, but do it, anyway. I only know love is the answer to a lot of life's problems and I see no reason it shouldn't be part of the answer to this problem.
   Three, give them whatever work you can get them to willingly do. Mow the lawn. Wash the dishes. Whatever. However much work they can and will do, encourage them to do.
   Four, give them positive feedback. Praise them for what good they do.
   Five, be sincere in your love, and in your praise. Mean it.
   Six, get them into a hobby, if you can. Help them find something meaningful to do that they enjoy doing

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Throw a Party on Election Night; Make it a Big To-Do

   If you would have a nice voter turnout, throw a party. Make election night a festival. Bring in bands, and comedians and whatever.
   And, of course, don't forget the candidates. Let this be their grand finale, their moment to pull out all the stops, their chance to speak to their largest audiences. If there have been debates, let this be the biggest debate of all.
   Right there in the park. Right outside the polling place. Give the voters who want to go vote without being hit up by campaigners enough room to get in and out peacefully and free of electioneering, but let all the campaigning possible be convenient to those who want to get a sudden education before stepping into the voting booth.
   Oh, and speaking of booths, don't charge the candidates for their booths. Let them campaign without a price. It would be good if we took money out of the equation when possible. Election without a price is a wonderful concept. Somehow, that we attach a cost for candidate booths doesn't make sense to me.
    So, here we have it, one way to increase voter turnout. The best bands, the best entertainment, and the best of the campaigning. Make election night a big event, a major occasion, a happening the voter isn't going to want to miss.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

This Might be the Biggest Disability in all the Land

   Here's a problem America might not even be considering, one it might not even be trying to measure, though it could and should: How many people are alcohol disabled? How many people are disabled by alcohol? I don't know that the term "alcohol disabled" is even used much. But, as surely as people are disabled by loss of limbs, or Parkinson's disease, or muscular dystrophy, they can be disabled by alcohol.
   Do we even count how many there are? Is the total 8 million, or however many? Shouldn't we be able to tally them up and measure how serious this problem is? No, I don't think I've ever heard a service promo saying something like, "Twenty thousand people are disabled by alcohol each year. Twenty thousand lives lost to this disabling disease every year."
   I would not be surprised, if we did commence to count them, but what we would find that alcohol disability is the number one disability in all the land. 
   Nor, have I ever heard of an association that deals with this disability. We have the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Arthritis Association, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, and so forth. Why not the Americans with Alcohol Disability Association? 
   Lives are being lost. I speak of those who die from alcoholism, but those whose lives are changed so much for the worse that, in a very real way, they are lost. Perhaps we could save some if we organized against it. Perhaps we could address the problem better if we were to recognize alcohol disability for what it is, if we were to count and tally these people, and if we had an association fighting to cure this widespread disability. Curing it obviously means finding a way to prevent people from drinking too much. The question is, is it politically or socially incorrect to even consider such a thing?

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

You all Come on Out, because this Election will be a Grand Celebration

   I searched out a voting site tonight and voted, all the while thinking how encouraging voting by mail might be exactly the opposite approach I'd have us take.
   Voting by mail makes election day less of an event, less of an occasion.
   As I left, I quipped to the poll workers that I'd ask them how they voted, but that I knew electioneering was not allowed. I thought on that as I drove away, wondering if there ever had been a day when politicians made their pitches right close to the voting sites.
   And, I'll bet that was more exciting.
   So, there might be more than just vote-by-mail that we are doing that takes the punch out the process of punching out a voting ticket.
   Me? If it were up to me? I'd suggest a voting festival. Rather than remove contact with each other, piece by piece, I'd bring us all together, complete with the candidates. I'd make election day more of an event, more of an occasion. I'd have debates, and discussions, and speeches and bands and music.
   You all come on out, because were having an election, and it's going to be one grand celebration.

On Trump? Don't have a 'Coup,' have a Second Election

   There's been talk of a "coup," perhaps you know, at the Republican convention.
   I partially don't like it. I don't like the idea getting rid of a candidate the people have selected. Oh, I've heard Trump doesn't have a majority of delegates -- and, I don't know, it seems he should, by now -- but he is still the person the people have selected.
   You don't just wash that aside. No, you don't just wash it aside and assume you are still operating like a democracy.
   No, I like better the idea that you send the nomination back to the public. Yes, change the rules. Yes, make a path for dumping a candidate, impeaching him, if you will, a way to call off the marriage, if you want to call it that, before the wedding.
    But, that rule change, should be to turn the matter back to the voters. Call for a new election. Set it for a month out. And, either have it followed by a second national convention, or let whoever the people pick, be the automatic choice of the party. Let stand the primary, without need of a convention. Some have suggested that is the way it ought to be, anyway.

Monday, June 27, 2016

A Museum with the Top 10 Stunning Views of Utah

   The Photographic Museum of Utah opened in 2021 just north of the Great Salt Lake, part of a sprawling tourist district accommodating air travelers arriving at the Salt Lake International Airport.
   And, a wonderful beginning and ending point for travelers this museum was. Actually, it was part of a larger museum, the Museum of Utah, which  highlighted all the tourist sites in the state. (Now, that makes for a large museum.) The Photographic Museum took just the most visually stunning sites, offering videos and still shots displaying their beauties.
   In the expansive foyer, or main room, hung 10 pictures from throughout the state. Other pictures were displayed in other rooms, but these 10 were those currently being voted by tourist-goers as the best.
   The Museum of Utah was a beginning point for tourists, because they could come and review all the state offered before selecting which sites to see. The Photographic Museum, and the Top Ten Stunning Views display were especially valuable in this regard, as tourists often chose their visits based on what they saw in the Photographic Museum.
   They were invited to return at the end of their visit to Utah, to vote on the best tourist sites, and offer their comments, and their pictures for display consideration. Their laudatory and informative comments were posted next to the pictures.
   Oh, and you could paint the scenes. Yes, if you painted a wonderful picture of Bridal Veil Falls, it might go into the museum and be voted on for Top Ten Stunning Views.
   The Museum of Utah was divided in parts. In one part, the Photographic Museum of Utah had rooms featuring the photographs and pictures of scenic sites, and a theater where you could view the beautiful sites in video presentations. Another part of the museum featured all the state's tourist sites, but mostly those that didn't fit into the category of being scenic.  A third part of the museum featured the history of the state and the accomplishments of it and its people.
   If you want to create an interest for something, feature it. Make a place to feature it. Having such a museum would laud the best the state has to offer. Would be neat if such a museum someday did exist, whether it be in 2021 or whenever.

If the Mind is Fearful, it is not Free

   The mind is afraid, or can be. It can take truth and fear it, if that truth runs counter to one's own belief.
   The mind is afraid. It will run from the truth, shut it out, seek to avoid it, refuse to hear it -- if that truth runs counter to what one wants to believe.
   And, as a result, truth can wear against the soul. It can age a man. It can bring dissonance. It can bring stress. Since stress kills, since it shortens life as much as anything, truth can kill. Perhaps not truth, itself, but our inability to deal with it.
   The answer, of course, is to have an open mind. Open minds heal the soul. The person who is not bound by an obligation to believe something, is not subject to the stress of a person who does feel obligated to believe something.
   So, then, truth must be taken on its own terms. It cannot be forced upon us. It must be accepted freely. If we would be at peace, we must keep our minds free to receive truth. We must fight the fear, for if the mind is fearful, it is not free. If we are to be free, we must not be afraid.