Posts Tagged ‘Charleston Nine’

Letter From New York 06 28 15 Thoughts on a rainy Pride Day…

June 28, 2015

It has been unremittingly; resolutely grey for the last two days, creating another set of grey days in a summer of grey days. It is so chill; I have actually turned up the heat in my bedroom to warm the room where I am writing. I’m wearing a sweatshirt and it is about to be July! After the long, hard winter it is as if the world is not willing to give us summer. It has been grey and wet more than it has not.

I am at my desk at the cottage, looking out at the verdant green that are my God’s two acres. I just wish it wasn’t this chilly.

Down in New York, it is Pride Weekend and the parade is being rained upon. I’m not there but texts from friends have informed me of the weather conditions. It’s a joyous weekend for gays in this country. The Supreme Court has ruled that marriage is a constitutional right for all.

As I have said, I didn’t think this would happen in my lifetime but it has. And I’m grateful for all the people for whom this will mean so much. I never really understood what it meant to be married until two men that I knew, Gary and Angel, got wed and I understood, for the first time, on a visceral level, what it meant to celebrate your relationship in front of other people. Their love, as I said at the time, was incandescent.

On this grey afternoon, I am thinking about marriage and I am thinking about race relations. The murder of the Charleston Nine has caused a reaction in the South I didn’t expect. Alabama has taken down the Confederate Flag and uprooted the flagpole. Time to move on.

The South, which is becoming a haven for so many international businesses, cannot afford to focus on the past but must look to the future. Which is why, in Alabama, they took down the flag of the rebellious South, even though that was the place Jefferson Davis was sworn in as President of the Confederacy.

All the Republican candidates have, I think, denounced the Supreme Court’s decision about marriage. Jeb Bush has been moderate in his comments, as has Marco Rubio. Huckabee has been vitriolic. As have most of them.

Sorry, friends, I think the field of Republican candidates, are an embarrassment. I was raised Republican. Who are these boobs? Narrow minded souls who might win the nomination but I doubt could win the election. And for that, I’m relieved, as I think it would be a catastrophe for the country to have all three parts of the government controlled by Republicans. They’re not intelligent enough.

I am on my soapbox as I am so disturbed by this field of Republican candidates.

Outside, the rain has relented. It will return during the night, I’m sure. Flash flood warnings are in place until 9:00 AM tomorrow morning.

In the background, jazz is playing and I am feeling warm now that I have turned on the heat. Thank goodness. I have been chilled all day.

The world is wobbling on. Greece is a mess and I think we have a not pretty outcome happening there. Hopefully, world markets have factored in the Greek drama so that no matter what happens it won’t shock the markets the way it would have a few years ago.

In Tunisia, a shooter killed something like 39 tourists. He was targeting them. There was an attack in France on an American owned plant that left one person beheaded. A Saudi born suicide bomber killed dozens at a Mosque in Kuwait. Sitting here, surrounded by my trees and the quiet of my world, it is so hard to understand the need to kill. But it is a need for those who do. The Tunisian terrorist was 23 and was dead before he left the beach but behind him were the dead.

Why this hate? Why?

Letter From New York June 20, 2015 Of Pride Parades and Barbecues…

June 20, 2015

Yesterday, I started but didn’t finish my Letter. I was still writing when it came time to go to dinner and when I returned home from dinner my friend Lionel was here, sharing our traditional “cleansing vodka” before retiring. We got that name from a friend of mine’s grandmother, who would never go to bed until she’d had her “cleansing vodka.”

It is Pride weekend in Hudson, a tradition started just a few years ago here. The day began grey and overcast but at this moment, the sun has broken through with shadows and light playing across the deck, outside the dining room, where I am writing.

Today there will be, of course, a parade down Warren Street, which I will watch in my usual spot outside the Red Dot. In the evening my friend Matthew Morse will be hosting a barbecue at his house. The day is shaping up to be a pleasant Saturday.

Wikileaks had a very busy day yesterday.

They posted on their website 200,000 more Sony documents from the now infamous Sony hacking incident. And they began yesterday to release something like a half million documents from the Saudi government. Plus, yesterday, Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks, celebrated his third anniversary holed up in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.

Busy, busy, busy…

Not so busy as he was, Prince Harry, the playboy Prince, has left his career in the Armed Forces and is returning to civilian life. He will spend the summer working on conservation projects in southern Africa, where his foundation is based.

Dylann Storm Roof, the young man who allegedly shot to death nine people in Charleston, South Carolina, at a historic Black church, was arraigned to stand trial for nine murders. In court, via video link, families of the dead told him how they felt. At least one family told him that they forgave him.

A long time NRA Board Member, Charles Cotton, posted comments on a website, blaming the Pastor of the Church for the slaughter because he was for gun control. Pastor Pinckney was one of the victims. The comments have since been taken down and Mr. Cotton has been unavailable to reporters.

In Colorado, the prosecutors in the case against James Holmes, on trial for the death of 12 people in the Aurora Theater massacre, have rested their case. It is now the defense team’s turn.

In Oklahoma, Chancey Allen Luna, was sentenced to life in prison for the death of an Australian baseball player attending school in Oklahoma. Christopher Lane was shot in the back while out jogging. At one point, Chancey told police he did it because he was bored.

It is not news that Republicans want to repeal Obamacare. Who knows? They might get their way but if they do, there will be a cost. If they use an accounting method preferred by the GOP, it will cost about $130 billion. Using the Congressional Budget Office’s normal methodology, the cost is almost triple that. Hmmmm.

There has been a possible sighting of the two escaped murderers, Richard Matt and David Sweat, down near the Pennsylvania border. If true, it means they have covered a lot of territory since their escape, 15 days ago. They are on the “Most Wanted” list and there is a $50,000 reward for information leading to their arrest.

On June 19th, 1865, in Galveston, Texas, slaves were informed they had been freed by the Emancipation Act more that two years before. It has become known as Juneteenth, a holiday to celebrate liberation and empowerment for African-Americans. The statement made by Obama yesterday acknowledged the day and referenced the sorrow and mourning that marks the death of the Charleston Nine. We live in a world in which racism and bigotry are still very much alive.

In Australia, a straight married couple has pledged to divorce if same sex marriage comes to Down Under. A wag started a Facebook page asking people to pledge to party if they do divorce. 175,000 have joined the page and pledged to party hardy if the couple divorce, both straight and gay are represented.

Ah, the sun has slipped back behind the clouds and the land has turned a shade of grey again. Soon, I will go off to the Parade and then my barbecue. Hope your day is as pleasant as mine promises to be.