Good Without God

I saw a young mother nearly dragging her child through the produce department I work at. I assume the kid had acted out because that’s what they do, but this mom wasn’t having it. She was spewing expletives between threats of punishment and worse, spanking.

I always thought it was fucked that my parents spanked me, I’ve always believed it was wrong to assault people. And teaching them to do things simply for the sake of avoiding punishment isn’t any better.

What if God had told Moses to cook and eat his firstborn? Why not? Humanity has let its children bleed out to please gods we’ve never heard of nor care about. All God ever offers is ‘do these things or suffer’, and that makes the rules meaningless. Maybe that’s why it’s easy to pick the ones that make the most sense based on what we already know to be right or wrong. We agreed on the Ten and typically don’t talk about all the other weird, pointless, racist, and sexist things therein.

We all have a typical code of ethics, it has nothing to do with deities and everything to do with the brain. We don’t need rules, we don’t need punishments. Being a good person requires nothing more than exercising the neurons that aid us in viewing the world through different eyes.

To Mars

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Global collapse, war, pollution, these are good reasons for finding a way off this marble. The heavens have gripped our curiosity since our eyes first fell upon their beauty. It’s easy to imagine life on the galactic frontier, drawing new maps, growing food, and starting a family with whom to share the martian sunset.

If that’s your fallback, I have some bad news. There’s an order of importance and it doesn’t typically include the poor. Virgin Galactic doesn’t charge $2.50 per ticket, they suck $250,000 from your checking account, and all that gets you is a few measly miles out into the dark frigid void.

Also, odds are, anything we send out to Mars will mirror the fate of the Titanic, only on a galactic level and an order of magnitude more horrifying.

We must come to accept the simple truth, if we can’t fix this place, we’re certainly not to going to escape it. I can’t blame anyone for making the attempt. Who wants to be here when things really go to shit and the weather becomes vastly more destructive and unpredictable, destabilizing farming, making basic things into rare commodities, and the price of essentials skyrocket? People are raiding grocery stores for pantry items, stabbing and shooting one another over tampons and condoms, Kombucha, baby formula, and bottled water.

Things vital to life should be free. Unfortunately, the people we elect, and the presidents the Electoral College pick for us, don’t think we deserve basic rights and services, so I fail to understand how we’re going to populate a planet 140 million miles away?

Guys, if you’re ever about to interrupt a woman with, ”not all men”, don’t. It’s implied.  No, not every single man on Earth is sexist, just so goddamn many that “all” works just fine. The very assumption that a woman doesn’t know what you’re about to explain to her, is sexist. If I’d told you all women are bitches, you wouldn’t stop me and say, “Well, not all women…”.

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How long will we allow the hyper-rich to divide and impoverish us? How long will we let them use media to direct our anger to women, people of color, immigrants, or any other without privilege? How long will we let them keep us powerless and uninvolved while they turn our water, air, and land into poison?

Trump Days: I Don’t Agree to Disagree

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Donald Trump is scum. So, if you voted for him you should have a pretty good explanation because I doubt you consider yourself a scummy person. Yet whenever I try to pull the knot apart with his supporters I’m met with phrases like boys will be boys. That’s the disgusting justification of predatory behavior, not a reasonable explanation. Why did you think giving a psychopathic Cheeto access to nukes, was a good idea? That’s not a petty thing we can resolve by agreeing not to. We’re not trying to decide whether Dr. Pepper tastes better than Coke. You’ve just boldly exclaimed that people can be openly racist, assault women, commit a list of atrocities, and you’re simply going to ignore it. You can’t give a bigger “fuck you” to every American and immigrant who isn’t a straight white man. Thankfully, Clinton won the popular vote. And if that mattered it would be a lot of the same thing: war, poverty, and the next TV series. As for Bernie, I gave a monthly donation to his campaign after he announced he was running. I don’t understand how someone as morally keen and open-minded as Bernie Sanders managed to end up in government, much less stay there. I do, however, know the final result of all the above, gridlock. What I don’t know is why, with three candidates whose moral framework goes from too good to be true to three decades of more-than-qualified in the usual affairs to build a wall—the very thing Pink Floyd warned against 37 years ago—you chose to be another brick.

Trump Days : Mourning

I spent election night drinking my shock away and the next few days mourning the fatal illness that has gripped our democratic republic. And now, I believe electing the worse possible candidate for America’s highest office may have been the right choice. Not because I think his campaign was some half-brain scheme at thoroughly trolling us or because he’s easing off some of his promises (probably an attempt at seeming legitimate until he can finally put his feet on the Oval Office desk). I’ve finally been so shaken up that I’m willing to work without pay, stay up late, and build a community capable of making an entirely new state. When a rapey misogynist, tax-dodging, white supremacist, who isn’t even capable of managing a Twitter account is elected to lead our nation, the system has utterly failed. And if you’re holding out for impeachment, I have bad news. Then you have to deal with Mike—you’ll have a baby if it literally fucking kills you—Pence. We must work together, shed our lofty individualism and organize to withstand the disaster that waits. We have to reach out to Trump’s supporters. The further away we push them from the world we’re building, the closer they are to the very thing we’re fighting.