HE SAID – SHE SAID by Beth Rankin

HE SAID – SHE SAID by Beth Rankin

[EDITOR’S NOTE]  Beth writes: “The concept I want to write on in goingplaces is about the misses in communication we all have with people who are close…and knowing that, perhaps, we can make a greater effort to try to be clear and not inflammatory in our conversations with people who are not so close. Anyway, you’ll know when I get it off my mind….”  Beth’s blog is:  goingplaceslivinglife.wordpress.com  Go visit her and say “Hi!”  We all understand that friendly greeting!

308083_259534974087419_983851575_nEven people who love each other have problems. Maybe it’s a Venus/Mars thing but I don’t think it can be explained that simply. Basically, many people just do not know how to communicate.  They know what they want to say but they forget to make time for the feedback loop…they forget to listen. They forget to check that they were heard correctly. And also, it seems, they forgot to stay patient.

Oh, we all say lots of words. No question there. I am a good example of the blah blah blah. But there is a difference between talking and communicating.

This past week was the county fair and I helped out for a few hours at the booth operated by the county Democratic party.  It is set up with information about candidates running for ALL the races from president on down to dog catcher.  Only kidding about the dog catcher, but down to the local level.

COUNTY FAIR

It was pretty funny watching people as they walked by the booth. For some, we were obviously invisible, as if they had blinders on the side of their face closest to us.  For others, we must have been emitting some kind of sensory beam as they walked as far away as the sidewalk allowed. Cooties, I guess….just as well they stayed away.

Other more passive aggressive types hollered “Vote for Trump!” as they cleared our frontal zone.  I managed to suppress my “in your dreams!” or a more colorful response in the interest of community  fellowship.

communication-1082657_1280The funniest part was when I walked down about five booths to the county Republican booth. It appeared to be a father and son who were there. The older one was in his 50s; the younger one maybe 20.

There was a banner “Make America Great Again” festooning the back of the booth so I asked, “So, how will we all make America Greater Now?” The answer, they proudly sang in tandem,  “Vote for Trump!”

Great, I said. Many will. And then what will happen?

Silence

“Oh”, I helped them along, “what has he suggested will make it better than it is now?”

“Get rid of all the illegals!” Dad shouted.

“How?”……pause….and then with more strength he opined, “round them up.”

needle-1419606_1280When I suggested it might be hard to know where they are, they got stymied.

When I told them that most illegals came in legally on visitor visas and overstayed their  permitted time limit, they did not know that.  But they rallied and said all foreign visitors would need to check in with the authorities as they moved around the country. I told them when I was working in Germany in 1981, before the fall of the USSR, I had to turn over my US passport at the place we stayed so they could report our presence to the police. I asked them if that was what they wanted here. They said only the foreigners would have to do it. Really? And how can you tell someone is a foreigner?  No answer.

When I asked how the illegals would be rounded up, they didn’t know, but it would be done because Trump said it would be.

I then dared to ask how getting rid of illegal farm workers would make Oregon great. They had no idea the role illegal workers play in this state, let alone the country.

occupation-1426385_1280Dad was very annoyed by that time and stomped off. I hollered after him that one way to make America great was not be a quitter and learn to communicate…give and take…listen and talk….then we could discover our commonalities and work together.

Son looked at me sheepishly. I guess the herd mentally was getting to him too.

 

AN AUSTRALIAN COMEDIAN TACKLES GUN CONTROL by Jan Hayden

AN AUSTRALIAN COMEDIAN TACKLES GUN CONTROL by Jan Hayden

Comedian Jim Jeffries tackled one of the most controversial subjects in the U.S. gun control laws.

Comedian Jim Jeffreys

Jeffries was once the victim of a home invasion in which he was tied up and beaten with his girlfriend, who was also threatened with rape. You’d think he’d have some cause for carrying a gun, no? Wrong! He brilliantly nails why Americans need to make a case for more gun control:

I’m going to say some things that are just facts. In Australia, we had guns. Right up until 1996. In 1996, Australia had the biggest massacre on earth. Still hasn’t been beaten. Now, after that they banned guns. In the 10 years before Port Arthur, there was 10 massacres. Since the gun ban in 1996, there hasn’t been a single massacre since. I don’t know how or why this happened….maybe it was a coincidence, right?

Now, please understand, I understand that America and Australia are two vastly different cultures with different people, right? I get it. In Australia we had the biggest massacre on earth and the Australian government went–that’s it! No more guns! And we all went–yeah, right then, that seems fair enough.

Now, in America you have the Sandy Hook massacre, which little, tiny children died and your government went….maybe we’ll get rid of the big guns? And 50% of you went – FUCK YOU, DON’T TAKE MY GUNS!

Now, nobody is saying take away all the guns. But seriously, can’t we get common sense regulations in the gun business to help prevent gun violence? Close gun show loopholes and (gulp—I can already hear the hate mail hitting my inbox) perhaps, maybe not sell weapons designed for war purposes?

This article originally appeared in The Daily Kos. Used with permission.