A confluence of topics dealing with mental health, substance abuse, health, public health, Social Work, education, politics, the humanities, and spirituality at the micro, mezzo, and macro levels. In short, this blog is devoted to the improvment of the quality of life of human beings in the universe.
I was reading at article recently which said that 1/3 of female soldiers in the United States military report being raped. I thought, "How can that be? That can't be right," and so I did a little research and it not only is right, but 1/3 may be low. Here is a snippet from an article in the Los Angeles Times from March 31, 2008. Here is a snippet:
The stories are shocking in their simplicity and brutality: A female military recruit is pinned down at knifepoint and raped repeatedly in her own barracks. Her attackers hid their faces but she identified them by their uniforms; they were her fellow soldiers. During a routine gynecological exam, a female soldier is attacked and raped by her military physician. Yet another young soldier, still adapting to life in a war zone, is raped by her commanding officer. Afraid for her standing in her unit, she feels she has nowhere to turn.
These are true stories, and, sadly, not isolated incidents. Women serving in the U.S. military are more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire in Iraq.
The scope of the problem was brought into acute focus for me during a visit to the West Los Angeles VA Healthcare Center, where I met with female veterans and their doctors. My jaw dropped when the doctors told me that 41% of female veterans seen at the clinic say they were victims of sexual assault while in the military, and 29% report being raped during their military service. They spoke of their continued terror, feelings of helplessness and the downward spirals many of their lives have since taken.
Numbers reported by the Department of Defense show a sickening pattern. In 2006, 2,947 sexual assaults were reported -- 73% more than in 2004. The DOD's newest report, released this month, indicates that 2,688 reports were made in 2007, but a recent shift from calendar-year reporting to fiscal-year reporting makes comparisons with data from previous years much more difficult.
My wife and I had 9 children: 3 sons and 6 daughters. We have 12 grandchildren: 8 granddaughters and 4 grandsons. I would be opposed to their being in a situation where they were that likely to be raped. Using the 1/3 rape rate that would mean that 2 of my daughters and almost 3 of my granddaughters would be raped if they were in military service. It is a terrifying thought which leaves me with the conclusion that the greatest threat of terrorist attack to my loved ones would be in the United States military, not for Al Queda or whoever it is we are supposed to be afraid of.
NOW on PBS covers rape story.
Video lasts 3:45
CNN - Recruiter rape - Video lasts 6:20
The big lie of Reaganomics exposed. The little guy and the middle class gets screwed again as our plutocracy marches on manipulating our economy for the benefit of the rich and powerful and the politicians they are in bed with. So much for Friedman and his idiot disciples who preach a free market and a smaller role for government. I can't see how the Repbulicans have any credibility left with any Americans who have the brains to understand what is going on.
Under the Repbulican administration of the last 8 years capitalism has gotten way out of control. Now we have to pay for misguided policies and the foolishness of the American voters who put these idiots in power.
Milton Friedman and his disciples are a bunch of charlatans when it comes to their preaching about free markets. They are only free when the plutocrats are making money. When they loose money the markets quickly become socialized by the government and the taxpayers pay. When will the voters catch on to the nonsense that comes out of Washington?
The following synopsis comes from the school library journal posted on the Amazon web site.
The Silenced begins with Marena running late for her bus that takes her from her readaptation community to her Youth Training Facility. Classes are lead by instructors of public enlightenment and consist of recitation of Zero Tolerance Party propaganda. Stern, silent state officers patrol the halls. As the book progresses, Marena begins to remember things that she was somehow made to forget. It becomes clear to her that her father was there when the state officers dragged her mother from their home years before. As regulations tighten, she isn't sure who she can trust besides her boyfriend, Dex, and newcomer Eric. She realizes that, like her mother, she cannot remain silent in the face of state oppression. The three friends choose graffiti as their primary form of rebellion. DeVita's novel has many of the same character types and situations as other dystopic works—the enemy who has a change of heart, the unsympathetic character who nevertheless proves to be brave, and the friend who is a traitor. While readers may not find any conceptual surprises, this is a gripping read and young adults will certainly empathize with the characters' conflicts between self-expression and a desire to fit in. They will find the Zero Tolerance credo that the state's first priority must be the safety of its citizens to have a chilling resonance with statements in the news today.—Eric Norton, McMillan Memorial Library, Wisconsin Rapids, WI
While The Silenced is marketed for grade 7 and up, many adults have enjoyed this novel by James Devita. I heard about the novel on the NPR radio show To The Best Of Our Knowledge. Having read it, I am chilled by the similarities to the Bush Administration which we have lived through in the last 8 years. I think this is an important book that all Americans read who are concerned about the direction which our country has been going in especially in the last 8 years.
How desperate are Army recruiters to fill the ranks to fight in the immoral and illegal war in Iraq? Desperate enough to use unethical and illegal tactics to intimidate naive young people into signing up.
Army recruiters prey upon young people and threaten them with arrest and jail if they don't sign up. Amy Goodman on Democracy Now interviews parties involved in this latest scandal. This show aired on August 6, 2008
If you have young people or work with young people, this is an important show which provides information about unethical recruiting tactics by the military.
You can listen by going to the Democracy Now web site by clicking on the link below.
While the corporate evening news broadcasts about the latest antics of Brittany, and Angelina and Brad's new twins, our country is going down the tube. It is interesting that you have to go to YouTube to have some of the dots connected. The Sludge Report lasts 4:42 and worth watching.
FOX News told reporter: "We'll tell you what the news is. The news is what we say it is."
Reporters Steve Wilson and Jane Akre were first asked by FOX News and later bribed, to downplay a story they had on a cancer-causing growth hormone called Posilac which is growth hormone for dairy cows which is absorbed by humans through milk. The reporters decided to blow the whistle on FOX News and filed a law suit. After the ordeal was over, it was discovered in the appeals court that it's actually not against the law to falsify the "News."
Video takes 10 minutes and is well worth watching.
“If the Left succeeds in gaining and retaining more power, the well-being of future generations will be at greater peril. I fear (our children) will inherit a nation that is less free and less secure than the nation we inherited from the last generation. It is therefore our job to stop them. Not just debate them, but defeat them.” — Sean Hannity
I found these words on page 11 of your book Let Freedom Ring. This book, and similar ones from your conservative colleagues Bill O’Reilly and Michael Savage, was found in the home of a man who read those words, internalized those words, and then loaded his shotgun. He took 76 rounds of ammunition with him to a place of worship—a place where he knew he could do his job to stop and defeat some liberals. At the Unitarian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee, Jim Adkisson, a fan of yours, killed two people, wounded five others, and left an entire congregation and country shaken by his actions. Actions prompted, as he testified in his own written notes, by the ideas contained in your words.
58,000 of my peers were killed in Viet Nam. Hundreds of thousands were injured and came home with PTSD. Millions of Viet Namese were killed, for what? Ostensibly, a domino theory that communism had to be stopped in Asia or it would come to the US. Americans were convinced by the politicians during the cold war that the bogey man was at large and threatened American security.
Bottom line it was good for business selling billions of dollars of weapons and drafting hundreds of thousands of poor baby boomers so they couldn't raise too much hell at home getting high, listening to seditious music like rock and roll, and marching for civil rights.
Viet Nam was another pre-emptive and immoral war which the US lost and should have lost because it was wrong. The plutocrats manipulated the public most of whom were too stupid to see through them and they elected Richard Nixon, of all people, to end the war which he had no intention of doing and it took him 6 years to finally get around to it amidst his paranoid criminal activities which lead to his resignation to avoid impeachment.
Whether it's the Red Menace or Terrorists it is interesting how easily the public is manipulated by politicians and corporations into perpetrating evil policies for economic reasons. Once again, when people tell you it's not the money, it's the principle of the thing, you can bet your last buck, its the money.
Mammon once again reigns as the American God. Greed rules and when in bed with the politicians human suffering and death ascend to horrific proportions. Another example of capitalism out of control.