A Day In The Park

“You were at the park? Wow! I haven’t been to the park in fifteen years.” To which I replied, “I haven’t stopped going for twenty.”

My friend who made the comment has two kids, ages 16 and 18. He was obviously shocked that I still go to the park. When he was younger he had taken his kids, as toddlers, but as they had gotten older he stopped going. To the contrary, I have six kids ages 6 to 19 and I take my kids out into nature every day. If I don’t, they can become unbearable…to themselves as well as me!

These outdoor excursions have given me the opportunity to meet many people, learn important lessons and make some observations. Admittedly, its now a little strange to encounter people fifteen years my junior with kids the same age as my youngest. I began raising my kids in the playgrounds of New York City. Later we moved to Texas where I have been raising my two youngest. The parenting and lifestyle contrast between New Yorkers and Texans couldn’t be more profound.

When I first started going to the playground in NYC I was, by far, the youngest parent there. The majority of parents were in the early forties, learning to parent for the first time. It was not uncommon to see multiple sets of twins (usually a sign of genetically-enhanced pregnancy) and kids with disabilities. For most parents, they had waited too long and had resorted to fertilization methods to get pregnant. While the lucky ones had twins, the unfortunate ones had children with disabilities. (I am not dismissing the joy experienced or wisdom learned from raising a disabled child; I am only addressing here the practical consequences of decision making). Those older parents always looked out of breath and out of shape to me. They treated their babies like precious cargo which was, of course, understandable. For many of them, having those children had been a long shot that had cost them a great deal.

NYC is such a competitive environment. I knew what many of those parents had gone through. They had worked hard to establish a career and make money because in Manhattan you need money…lots of it… to survive. They had sacrificed precious years only to find themselves aging and alone with no family. Many of them married in their late thirties and gave birth shortly thereafter.  For those, it was literally their last hope for a mate and a family. For some, when their bodies could not produce the children they wanted, they turned to pharmaceuticals to engineer their kids. And when they finally had their children, those parents looked old and worn out.

Many of those New Yorkers had done their best to “plan” out their lives. They had methodically gone to the best schools, found the best jobs, planned it all out so that when they decided to marry and have a family it would happen on schedule… like all of their other plans. But it never works out that way. The biggest thing I learned from those excursions was that time marches on…irrespective of our having a plan or not. Genetic time clocks tick ever onward.

The exhaustion on their faces showed in everything they did. The pregnancy, the marriage and the kids had been other items on the checklist of their planned lives. Yet, the conversations I had with many of them evidenced regret. They had waited too long to get married and start a family. Time had marched on without them. They had mistakenly believed they could manage life and their management plan had been vanquished. On multiple occasions, I met couples who had married simply because they felt out of options. They were motivated by fear that if they did not marry their current partner, they might never marry at all.

The saddest to observe were the parents of the disabled children. There is nothing more painful for a parent than to see their child suffer. These parents clearly suffered along with their children. Anybody who has had a child can tell you that the risks of birth defects are greater as you age. Statistics bear it out. Yet, these brave parents had risked everything to have a child and accepted the consequences.  They had finally gotten the family they desired and it cost them dearly. The parents in NYC made a Faustian bargain that failed them. They had their kids but found they did not have the energy or time needed to do it right. Sadly, the realization came after the fact.

In Texas, the contrast is startling. The first thing I observed was that the parents were younger. They had gotten married in their twenties and had more children. They seemed to understand that if they wanted kids, family and career it had to be properly prioritized. They were willing to make the career sacrifices to have the family.  For the most part, they seem happier. They made peace with the idea that if you want a family it is best to begin building it while still young.

There are multiple reasons for these two, very different scenarios. One that stands out in my mind is how the media and the Feminist movement promote the notion that women can have it all. They trot out people like Angelina Jolie with her brood of kids and great career as an example to us all that it can, in fact, be had. Even the Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, wrote a book called Lean In about how women can have everything their heart desires…family, career, success, etc.  Sandberg is an avowed Feminist who wants to transform the role of women in the workplace.  She is also incredibly wealthy. Her wealth, and the wealth of others like Jolie, makes it possible for them to have it all because they are able to pay for it all. The nanny, the cook, the housekeeper and the tutor.  For the vast majority of women, those chores and necessities must be accomplished by themselves while simultaneously earning a living and trying to raise a family. Further, decisions have to be made and priorities set for which there are real consequences. So while the Jolies, Sandbergs and Feminist movement claim you can have it all, those tired and often sad parents I observed in NYC know its not true.

Children need attention and, most importantly, time. Especially in their formative years. Time from their parents. To think otherwise is foolish, delusional and ultimately destructive to a healthy family life. You can have all the money in the world but it can’t buy time. We all have to live by the same ticking clock.

Former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis had a great perspective on child rearing: ” If you bungle raising your children, I don’t think whatever else you do matters very much.” In the midst of all her wealth, fame and power Kennedy Onassis figured out what Sheryl Sandberg has yet to learn. The most important thing we do is wisely prioritize our values and put our children at the very top of that list.

Steve

sleeclark@gmail.com

What Feminism Was Supposed To Do

How is it that 45 years after the birth of feminism, and its continued growth as a social movement in this country, we discover for all that time we were enmeshed in systemic sexual harassment of girls and women? Why is it that the same girls and women who were fighting for equal pay and the right to dress as they pleased seemed unable, or unwilling, to simultaneously fight for their own physical and emotional safety? Why are the multitude of people who acquiesced, or turned a blind eye, to the sexual harassment and degradation of women now being hailed as “courageous” for merely jumping on the band wagon of what only a very few (e.g. Rose McGowan and Natasha Henstridge) had real courage to expose?

The answer isn’t that feminism was a fraudulent movement so much as it was a misguided one. It had its priorities wrong. In trying to achieve equal respect, promotion parity and wage equality for women, it told women the way to get there was to be like men. Nowhere was the movement’s mantra said better or more succinctly than when leader and spokesperson for the feminist movement, Gloria Steinem, voiced “We’re becoming the men we wanted to marry.” Well, yes. But that created the result 45 years later: 1) there are very few of those men left and 2) an awful lot of people aren’t even sure which gender they, in fact, are.

This isn’t about gender identity. It’s about what it means to be a woman. To be the walking, talking, “Divine Feminine” if you will.  There seems to be a lot of confusion about this term. It’s not a mystical or metaphysical concept. It’s one of two specific creations by the Divine. In Genesis 1:27: “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Let’s not parse words or get theologically bound in minutia. Generally speaking, we can agree that men and women exist and that there are some inherent differences in the way we are wired. Not in whether we would rather play football or dress Barbie… but in how we approach conflict resolution or emotional issues. Scientists studying dissimilarities underlying some of the most important gender distinctions have found distinctions deeply rooted to the days when men were hunters on the savanna and women were gatherers rearing children near camp.

I suggest we women are wired in a particular way, as are men, such that working together, in harmony, we provide a natural balance that is necessary for the continued well-being of the species as well as the planet we inhabit. When imbalance occurs, the species and the planet suffer. In the extreme, our very existence is at stake.

For thousands of years societies, and the planet, have been predominantly administered by Divine male energy. For the most part, and in most places, influence of the Divine feminine has been marginalized, ignored, subjugated or enslaved. This has resulted in profound imbalance and its resulting effects. Because nature, of which we are a part, has the power to rectify imbalance, what we are seeing is a re-emergence of the Divine feminine.

But we must be very careful not to confuse the Divine feminine with feminism.

The Divine feminine has as its inherent quality a countervailing energy to the Divine masculine. It is not the Divine feminine’s role to become the Divine masculine but rather to countervail it. To balance it out.

I don’t countervail a guy whose pants are worn in a way to expose his rear end by in turn dressing to expose my breasts. I do so by dressing modestly thereby showing respect for my physical body. I do not countervail aggressive or violent behavior by acting similarly. I do so by reasoned thought and compassion for someone’s discomfort or pain.

The danger of the #TimesUp movement, or the Oprah Winfrey speech at the Golden Globes, or all those who now think its “women’s turn” is in us becoming a reaction rather than a countervailing force.  Reactions tend to be equal and opposite. We do not need women to now spend decades or centuries…even millennia…reacting to the mess unbalanced male energy has created. This would only bring about more imbalance albeit at the opposite end of the spectrum.

What we need to do now, as the Divine Feminine, is to move with ease and grace into those places where imbalance is evident. In actual practice, this means that both men and women will have to examine their own internal balance and adjust accordingly. It is no longer about one or the other gender being in power. Nor is it about being confused into thinking that men must become women or vice versa. Just as no one politician can solve all of our problems, no one gender can either. Where diversity exists, whether in politics or gender, conflict resolution is a team sport. Successful teams have players who each contribute something of value to the end game. But the success starts with the preparedness of each individual player and their understanding of the contribution they must make to the team.

The Divine feminine is not here to usher in a new era of female dominion over men. We’re here to make the unique contribution only we can make toward fulfilling our part in creating and maintaining the harmony and balance necessary to sustain the world.

Carole (contact@carolegold.com)

 

Movie Review: The King’s Speech

I may be a bit late to the party but last weekend I (Steve) watched “The King’s Speech” for the first time. I was blown away. The acting was extraordinary, the story true but more importantly, the life lessons profound.

The story is set in England just prior to World War II. It revolves around Prince Albert who would later become King of England. Albert has a speech impediment, a severe stammer, which causes him to be withdrawn and not at all eager to perform public duties. However, since he has an older brother Edward, Duke of Windsor, Albert takes comfort in knowing he will likely never be King.

At the same time, Hitler has risen to power within Germany and its army is on the march to conquer Europe.  The stammering Prince must face the emergence of radio as a means of communication. His stammer is now for all the world to hear. Undeterred, Albert gives speeches as best he can, often so terrified he freezes up during their presentations. He has hired and fired a variety of speech coaches to help overcome the problem but to no avail. Nothing seemed to work. None-the-less his wife, Elizabeth I, remains intent on helping him and stumbles upon an Australian speech therapist who looks promising. This is where the movie begins.

Colin Firth plays Prince Albert and Geoffrey Rush the part of, Lionel, the speech therapist. Lionel is a self-possessed man who is not intimidated by the Prince. He sets the terms and conditions of therapy and demands the Prince come to his office.  He says within those walls the two would be equals. Lionel calls Albert “Bertie,” a family nickname. It infuriates Albert as do many of Lionel’s methods. Lionel acquiesces to but one of Albert’s demands: that therapy be limited to vocal exercises and breathing techniques with no delving into personal matters. This despite Lionel’s certainty that they would eventually have to get at the emotional trauma that caused the stammer to begin with, as was the case with all stammers.

Somehow, during the process of therapy, an unlikely trust and friendship develops between the two men.  Such that when their father, King George V dies and Prince Edward ascends to the throne, the unlikely becomes Albert’s greatest nightmare. His brother abdicates the throne to marry an American divorcee. Albert visits Lionel at his office and the two share a cup of tea and the soon-to-be crowned King reveals his past. A nanny who deprived him of food, inflicted physical pain and favored his brother. Further, parents so disengaged that it took them a year to notice he was emaciated. There was the origin of the stammer. Finally revealing this long buried shame, Prince Albert becomes King George VI.

There are two remarkable messages from this movie that can serve us all. Carole and I share them both here.

Steve

Motivational speaker Tony Robbins speaks at length about working on oneself. For example, he has had many clients who made fortunes only to lose them. When Robbins probed to find out why some achieved great success only to lose it, he discovered that he could teach them techniques but if the client did not make the deep and lasting changes in their thinking, success would be temporary. One example was a client would repeatedly make money only to lose it a short time later. Robbins discovered that his client had grown up very poor. Making money made him uncomfortable so he reverted to what was comfortable and what he had been, poor.

George VI knows the stakes are huge. Hitler’s Germany is on the march and many lives will be lost if the King is not able to rally his people. He must address the nation on the eve of war. Faced with the challenge of his life, George succumbs totally to the speech therapist’s direction.  He does the necessary deep work and discovers where his stammer originated. He takes to radio and inspires a rapt nation. Humility and courage. These are the tools of greatness.

Carole

Helena Bonham Carter plays Elizabeth. The supportive strength that Queen Elizabeth provides her terrified husband cannot be overestimated. While Albert, as both Prince and King, wants to throw it all away, give up or run and hide, it is his wife who shares her own fears and secrets that give her husband the will to prevail.

The most poignant scene between the two occurs the night before Albert is to appear before the counsel of Lords to assume the naming of him as King George VI. Prince Albert slumps at his desk weeping over how little he knows of kingship and its responsibilities. He says he was not “meant to be King”…his brother was. Elizabeth wraps her arms around her troubled husband and shares that she, too, never wanted a public life. She says that falling in love with him caused her to wonder if she could survive such a marriage. But she reveals that she took comfort in the fact that he had “such a lovely stammer” she would never have to worry about the likelihood.  Elizabeth was showing him that she, too, was about to face an unintended life but face it, none-the-less, with grace.  She was his rock.

Much is made of the “divine feminine” aspect of God; but, much of it misses the mark. The divine feminine is that aspect of creation that supplies nourishment in every aspect of life. It is not just about child bearing or motherhood.  Whether in the bedroom, boardroom or corridors of government, the divine feminine is the support and counterbalance to the divine masculine. It is power not force. It is compassion not pity. It is the courage to be “love in action.”

Both of us

The “King’s Speech” received 12 Oscars. It deserved them all.  Of greater and more lasting importance are the life lessons learned from from two people faced with circumstances they preferred not to encounter. Courage and humility go a long way in conquering the unanticipated and the unknown. They go even further when true power is used as it was intended: as unconditional love in action.

 

 

 

The Trumps and The Clintons Have a Sex Problem

Even Huma Abedin knows when its time to leave a pervert.

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I find it inconceivable that there is so much indignation, righteous and otherwise, over the latest tapes released of Donald Trump’s bravado in trash talking about women. Its who he is. He has made no efforts to present himself otherwise.  In fact, when asked early in the campaign if he, as a Christian, had ever asked God for forgiveness his reply was ,”No because I’ve never done anything I needed to be forgiven for.” Not even ceremoniously groping a woman’s crotch and breasts, without permission, rates as an act Trump feels is in need of his seeking forgiveness from God… or from the woman for that matter.

I find his discussions and references to his daughter’s body particularly disturbing. I watched Trump’s acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention. What I found incredible and deeply disturbing was how, at its conclusion, when Ivanka walked out on stage to congratulate him, he grabbed her by the hips and pulled her into him as a man does with a woman with whom his is being, or intends to be, intimate. It was such an inappropriate way for a father to touch a daughter; yet, it was automatic and seemingly natural to them both.

But let’s not cast too shallow a net.

Bill Clinton is a rapist at worst and a sex addict at best.  I believe Juanita Broderick, Kathleen Willey, Jennifer Flowers, Paula Jones and whoever else says they were accosted and or assaulted or raped by him. I believe them the same way I believe all those women who came out against Bill Cosby. The numbers are too great and the stories too similar. Besides, I met Bill Clinton when he was running for President at an “invitation only” fundraiser. I spoke with him for about two minutes as we shook hands. He held onto mine the entire time. In that two minute conversation I felt undressed in public. I even returned to our table and said to my then husband, “I feel as if I have just been seduced and undressed with someone’s eyes.” I wasn’t reading anything into it at the time other than my personal experience. All the stories of his sleazy behavior were not yet in the public domain.

I also remember the Clinton Presidency when, driving our then grammar school age daughter to and from school, I had to monitor the car radio in case news came on and words like “oral sex” and “semen stains” became everyday vocabulary.

Then there are the “stand by your man” women. Hillary and Melania ought to have gotten out of Dodge a long time ago. But each is in their game for higher stakes than they can find elsewhere. For Hillary, its the Presidency. For Melania, its a lifestyle that is the stuff only dreams are made of back in Slovenia. So they endure public humiliation by supporting men who have no boundaries, no ethics, no morals and no respect for women…regardless of what they say when they are caught.

On occasion, I have been around such men in my life.

Men who think a woman’s body is theirs for the touching or taking, without the need for permission and certainly absent conscience. These are men who feel powerless and only force, or crossing boundaries, gives them a false sense of power. But its fleeting because its an illusion…and so they must do it again and again. Its like a drug that makes them, for themselves, feel more important than they actually believe they are. When the effect of the high wears off, they need to act out again. And so they do.

Even Huma Adedin has a lower humiliation threshold than either Hillary or Melania. Even she knew when to leave a pervert who has no regard for how he dishonors himself or her.

So, let’s not get all bent out of shape at these recent tape revelations about Donald Trump.  Donald, Melania, Hillary and Bill are all sick and they all need to go. Then, at least, we can choose between Mike Pence and Tim Kaine.  After all, when you’re in the gutter, anything is up.

Carole

contact@carolegold.com

Instructions For Being You

When I was a child I would converse with inanimate objects.

User guide

I can recall my parents retelling the story of how, when I was three and four years old, I would bump into a chair, for example, and say “’cub-ie chair!” (because I couldn’t pronounce the words “excuse me”). I also read words and sentences left to right… but then read them right to left. I would read a dictionary for fun as I thought words were important and in some way alive. I communicated with animals and trees. I often felt physical pain when someone or something else was harmed. I sometimes knew what others were thinking. I didn’t perceive the world the way most people did. For me, life was as much about the unseen and the unsaid as it was about the external, visible and auditory world.

As a result, I spent the first few decades of my life trying to fit into a world that seemingly had no place for me. Why did I have all of this awareness and what was I to do with it?

For those few decades during which I struggled with how to find my place in the world, I experienced a lot of wrong turns and made a lot of unwise choices. Because I was surrounded by people who did not share or understand my perceptions, I was unsupported in living a life that was consistent with truth as I experienced it.

Being unique, and living that uniqueness, is the hardest way to go through life. It is also the way we were designed to do it. You, too, are unique. How many times in your life have you been the recipient of those words? Probably not enough!

As we all struggle to adapt, and at times survive, the rapid changes the world is going through, how valuable would it be to truly know that you were born with direct access to all of the information you need to handle each and every moment of your life with certainty, focus and calm? The answer to that question is that such knowing would be priceless.

Looking back at human history and beyond, we have moved from predominantly individual barbarism to predominantly civilized societies with the help of certain events and structures that have aided us in that journey. The Goddess-led cultures that preceded monotheism, the giving of the Ten Commandments, the life of Jesus, agriculture, industrialization, and 20th century technological explosion have all contributed to this forward march.

With each of these advancements, so too has the individual’s freedom expanded. Yes, there are still remnants around the world of that barbarism I spoke of earlier, but we are on an undeniable path leading us to a fuller understanding of what Free Will is and the unlimited power that comes from autonomy over one’s own heart and mind through a direct inner connection with the Source of All That Is.

Resistance is always greatest nearest the point of breakthrough.

This is what we are experience now…globally. The resistance can be found in political and religious bureaucracies; yet, it is unstoppable. It is the approaching breakthrough of sufficient numbers of individuals around the world who have experienced, either over time or most recently, the possibilities that exist beyond our five senses and the limitations of enslavement, when fully engaged in using our hearts and minds to create the kind of world in which we choose to exist and flourish.

I now know, and want you to know, the power of the uniqueness that is you. You do not exist to be a replica of anyone who preceded you, or anyone who is in the world today. You are not meant to “fit in” at the price of denying or relinquishing your unique contribution to the ever-unfolding experience of conscious human evolution. So long as you do not intentionally harm another, nor they you, we are all required to honor our individual perceptions, truths and life choices as we identify and manifest the essence of who we are.

Once I realized the answer to that question of long ago, “Why did I have all of this awareness and what was I to do with it?” I stopped trying to fit in.

Now I create space that lovingly supports me as I am.

 

Carole

Why Do We Only Hear About Trump’s Father?

I practiced divorce law for 15 years. Part and parcel to such practice is domestic violence. You can’t avoid it. Even absent a history of physical abuse, divorce is such an emotionally charged process for the parties involved that frustrations, impatience and tempers often reach dangerous levels. Practicing Family Law is an education in relationship dysfunction, its causes and its effects.

Mother

One of the insights I gained, both from my practice as well as from my own life experience, is that how individuals are raised and how their nuclear family members treat and relate to one another forms the foundation for how people later choose life partners.  No influence has a more profound impact upon that foundation than that of our parents. Without going down such a simplistic path as did Freud (daughters want to sleep with their fathers and sons want to sleep with their mothers) there is none-the-less an undeniable influence that both parents have upon how children, of both genders, relate to the opposite sex. How that influence plays out, however, is fact based and varies in every situation.

In addition to the aforementioned, generally speaking, where a mother is present in a family she has an undeniable influence upon the type of home and family life that is created.

I had a very charismatic father. He was successful, charitable, and personable with an undeniable presence. My mother was much more the background to his main event. She was less vocal, less impressive and very much maintained the stage upon which my father performed.  I can recall many times during my childhood and young adulthood when I, or my sister, was in disagreement with my father. He would often respond with “Sure, it’s always my fault. I’m always the bad guy.” At the time, I pretty much saw things that way. He was the major influence and had the apparent concentration of power so, of course, he was the obvious target for grievances. He was, in all fairness, also the recipient of credit for all things good.

It took me decades into adulthood, in fact until after my father died, to begin to understand the silent power my mother had wielded in our family and the effects it had upon familial relationships both then and later in creating and dismantling my own marriage. It tuned out that it was a very complicated and unseen dance that had played out between my parents. What is undeniable, in hindsight, is the influence each brought to the table, for good and for ill, and how that influence affected choices and attitudes in my own life, particularly as they related to men.

Which brings me to Donald Trump.

I have been following this primary season with great interest. I happen to believe this election to be of unimaginable importance to the future of the nation. As such, while always a political junkie of sorts, my attention and my efforts to be informed this time around surpass any level of interest I’ve had in prior elections. I have also tried to be informed from the perspective of a variety of sources and political agendas. My goal has been to have the most comprehensive education in order to make the most informed choice. I take voting very seriously.

No matter what the source, Donald Trump is often quoted as praising his father for what he knows about business as well as for financing Donald with his start in the world of real estate.  His father is referred to as smart, successful, and powerful. Nary is a word ever mentioned by Trump about his mother. I find that curious. In fact, in light of Trump’s apparent dysfunction with women and women’s issues, I find it an omission of gigantic proportion. Who was she? What was his relationship with his mother? What influence did she have upon his life and values? Upon his opinion of women and how they should be treated? How did his father treat his mother? What was the dynamic of their marriage?

No such silence exists regarding Ted Cruz. His family history is a centerpiece of his campaign. To the contrary, the silence from Donald Trump about his mother is deafening.

We all know from his own books that Trump is a serial philanderer. He has admittedly cheated on his wives. He is obsessed with looks and in particular, women’s bodies. If a woman isn’t attractive he has little good to say about her and, at times, is outright cruel in his descriptions of women (e.g. Carly Fiorina and Heidi Cruz). He makes inappropriate sexual innuendos at inappropriate times. In the past several months and escalating in recent days, Trump has used foul language to disparage individual women he dislikes, staunchly stood up for his campaign manager who is charged with battery of a woman (based upon video evidence of the battery and resulting injuries) and said that a woman who has an abortion should get jail time (Disclosure: I am pro-life but his position is none-the-less offensive and without thought).

I am not saying that Donald Trump’s emotional stagnation at about age 15 as it relates to women is his mother’s fault. What I am saying is that there is an obvious imbalance within his own mind and in his expression of the proportionate role his parents played in the formation of his principles and his values. No one is all good and all bad. But when there exists a one-sided perception of a relationship, such as I had early on regarding my own parents and as Donald Trump has regarding his, there is also either an unwillingness or an inability to face the totality and reality of that relationship.  Refusal to look at anything head-on and evaluate it based upon what is, or was, only leads to denial and development of skewed and unbalanced ideas and behavior.

So what I surmise, and its only conjecture, is that Donald Trump’s father and mother had a difficult relationship; that Donald grew up in an environment influenced by that difficulty; that Donald developed perverse survival mechanisms to survive the difficulty and perhaps most importantly, that Donald’s mother played a significant (if even a significantly passive) role in his formulating demeaning opinions of women and how to treat them.

I close by acknowledging that I am not a psychologist. I am a lawyer and citizen who wants the best for my country. It is my personal and professional experience that denial is dangerous and not the way to get to where it is you want to go.  Therefore, for me, Donald Trump’s penchant for denial eliminates him as a viable Presidential candidate.

 

Carole

contact@carolegold.com

 

Meet Megyn Kelly, Esquire

Brilliant! That’s the only word for what Megyn Kelly had researched and prepared to ask Donald Trump regarding Trump University during tonight’s Republican debate. Well, maybe not the only word. “Precise” and “damning” also come to mind. It was so incredibly satisfying to watch not just anyone, but the woman Trump had tried so hard to publicly demean, disparage and dismiss following the earlier Fox News hosted debate.

Megyn (2)

Megyn Kelly came armed with research. But she also came determined not to be interrupted, shouted down, slandered or prevented from asking her question in its entirety, based upon the facts and judicial findings. And prevail she did.

Trump’s response, and pathetic defense, was to repeat over and over “just wait three years” and we’ll see…referring to the outcome of the  pending litigation. Well, like Hillary Clinton and a lagging Justice Department indictment, the nation cannot afford to wait for either of them to be prosecuted, fined and/or imprisoned. To wait will mean that the findings will follow his or her election to the most powerful office in the world. Only those who refuse to see the peril in such a scenario would contemplate voting for either Trump or Clinton.

Yes Donald Trump is, in the words of the Appellate judge who wrote the opinion in the counter-suit Trump brought against the primary plaintiff in the 5000+ person class-action law suit against him, a “con man” like so many who have come before him. He suckered innocent people who forked over money because of his name and his claims, only to be effectively bilked out of their money and denied what was represented.

Not only should we not be supporting either Trump or Clinton, we should be doing everything in our power to stop both of them from getting anywhere near the office they seek. They are both crooks and liars. They both lack integrity and ethics. They both seek personal gain at any price. They both seek to rain vengeance upon anyone who opposes them or gets in their way. They are bad people.

We can be angry at how we have been manipulated by the press. We can be angry at how politicians of the past, and many in the present, lied to us and grew rich while we struggled. We can be angry at a corrupted system that has been rigged for the few at the expense of the many. But there is a difference between righteous anger and blind rage.

Righteous anger is founded and grounded in fact. One can think rationally and act reasonably when righteously angry. Blind rage is the loss of rational thought and the acting out, excessive acting out, of uncontrolled emotion. Righteous anger leads to correction. Blind rage leads to destruction of self and others.

Let’s not continue down the path to November so blinded by our rage that we remain in denial of who Trump and Clinton are and of what they are capable. Let us cultivate righteous anger in its stead so that we evaluate rationally, act accordingly and make our decisions based upon the good of the nation and its future, rather than upon some adolescent urge to make someone pay for past mistakes.

The past only exists if we drag it into the present and thereby breathe new life into it for the future. Let’s jettison was has been and seek a new tomorrow where we take personal responsibility for how we make the decision that will surely determine the course for our nation’s future or its demise.

Carole

(contact@carolegold.com)

An American Woman Serving in the Military

Context is everything. So is perspective. The same set of facts within a different context, or from a different perspective, can lead to an opposite conclusion. Such is the case with women in the military. My co-blogger, Steve Clark, has written a factually accurate and passionately felt post regarding the pending inclusion of women in combat within the U.S. military. As a former Marine and member of a family that has seen its share of men go off to war on behalf of their country he sets forth a compelling argument why he opposes the decision and why he intends to never see his daughters in combat.

Sol3

I, on the other hand, just today hugged my daughter goodbye at the airport in Austin, Texas as she ended a five-week visit home. Home for us is where I live yet my daughter is a Commander in the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF).  She is currently serving in a combat Search and Rescue Unit as an out-of-country volunteer. She began as an American citizen but, as a result of her service, now has both U.S. and Israeli citizenship. She carries two passports.

I agree with everything Steve wrote in his post. Within the context of U.S. politics and U.S. military history, we have too often sent young men to die to satisfy the recklessness and excesses of politicians who never see combat while reaping the luxuries and financial rewards that so often accompany the buildup and execution of war.

So why am I so proud of my daughter? Why do I bid her goodbye with both a mother’s tears of anxiety for her safety as well as an indescribable parental pride?

Context.

We are American Jews. Israel, twenty-four miles wide at its widest point, has been a nation under relentless siege for its entire existence. For 68 years, the tiny nation has never known peace or its citizens the luxury of personal safety. Israel does not have an offensive military agenda. It does not seek to nation build. It aspires to no conquest. It seeks only to live in peace on a sliver of land granted to it following the nightmare known as the Holocaust when the world turned a blind eye and a deaf ear to attempts at a systematic and barbaric genocide aimed at annihilating an entire people because of their faith.

After my daughter graduated high school in New Jersey she spent a gap year in Israel. I was not opposed to her taking a year off prior to college but I made it clear she had to volunteer someplace in the world to give that year meaning.  She chose a nine month program in Israel designed for exactly such a purpose. When she returned home to begin her freshman year, she informed me that she “had a plan.” She was going finish her freshman year then volunteer for a combat unit in the IDF. She would then finish college after her service.

I was shocked and deeply concerned but felt I had a year to either talk her out of it or witness her enthusiasm waning. Neither occurred. As I observed the commitment to her decision deepen as her freshman year progressed, I realized she was responding to an inner calling that I had no right to impede. She is now two years and two months into her three year commitment.

Yes, I lost a lot of sleep during Operation Protective Edge in Gaza last summer. Yes, I often worry about her well-being. Yes, I often wish she was not so readily in harm’s way. (It was her base outside of Gaza last year where several terrorists emerged from the Mediterranean in scuba gear intending to kill soldiers only to themselves be killed before they could kill).

But in a world of young people who have no sense of history or purpose, who live vicarious lives on the internet, who indulge themselves when not being indulged by their parents, who turn to drugs and pornography to escape reality, who think friendship is how many people “friend” them on Facebook…I take pride in the fact that my daughter has purpose. I take particular pride in the fact that she is helping keep safe a nation and a people that desire only to live and let live.

When I visited my daughter last year in Jerusalem where she lives when off base, I was truly amazed by the love and pride expressed to her everywhere we went by Israeli citizens. When I would introduce her and say “this is my daughter” the response was invariably “here… she is everyone’s daughter.” Volunteers who have died in service to the IDF have had funerals attended by thousands of Israelis who never met them yet walk hours to the grave site to pay tribute. Young men as well as young women have died in such service.

When you walk the streets of Israel, a common sight is young female soldiers in shorts having lunch or even sunbathing on the beach in bikinis with an M-16 or M-4 slung over their shoulder. (IDF soldiers are subject to incarceration if their weapon is stolen or lost and so they  never part with it unless staying in a private residence and, even then, it must be broken down and its parts stored in multiple locations within the home). No one wants to see a woman go to war. Not as Steve eloquently laid out in his post, not any Israeli, and certainly not this mother. But when it’s a matter of existence, not politics or nation building, then everyone, regardless of gender, who can serve…should serve.

If that service is an inner calling then ultimately, and more importantly, it’s a matter of heart not gender.

Carole

Women: Its Time To Sign Up For The Draft

As society continues to push the notion of  equality between the sexes, the feminist finally got their wish granted with our armed forces opening up all combat positions to women. Until now, all males age eighteen and older must register for the selective service, the precursor to the draft.  However, with women now eligible for combat positions, I anticipate that they too will have to register in the near future upon turning eighteen.

women in combat

Given the United States penchant for war, along with our global commitments, there is a continual demand for more bodies. This establishes the need for more soldiers; hence, the decision to open our armed services to women.  I believe the general public does not fully comprehend the ramifications of this policy.  Only when we begin to see women maimed and killed on the battlefield will the public finally understand the end to which the feminist movement has led us.

Only a small percentage of the population (about 1%) has ever served in the military so most people have no idea what it entails. They see the commercials and news reports and think they understand military life. They don’t.  Any veteran who has ever served in harm’s way will tell you that real evil exits in the world.

A lot of people navigate the world in deliberate ignorance of the evil that surrounds them. Veterans know it’s out there because they have seen it . . . and shot it in the face. They believe in the adage that ‘the only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing’ because they’ve seen it happen. They are willing to go to great lengths to make sure that evil can’t touch something that they love.

In the sake of gender equality, the U.S government is willing to sacrifice our teenage girls to the horrors of war. Our daughters, sisters and future mothers and wives are going to be sacrificed at the alter of gender equality.

My daughters, all five of them, will never serve.

I am a former Marine. I was an Infantry officer and fought in the first Gulf War. My father was a Marine Officer and was stationed in Okinawa as a Tank commander prior to the Vietnam War.  My uncle was a Marine who served in Korea. I can say with full confidence, the Clark family has done its part in serving its country

Now older and wiser and and a father of five girls, I would never ever want them to join the military or, for that matter, the Marines. War is a brutal business and the U.S continually pounds the drum looking for more conflict.  While we have not fought a battle on our homeland in over one hundred years, we none-the-less export our young people to foreign lands and ask them to do the politician’s bidding.

During the oath of office, all Marines are sworn to uphold the Constitution from all enemies foreign and domestic. But just look at our southern border. We have no troops there. We are not protecting our borders from enemies intent on crossing them to do harm. We have a small contingent of border agents with a massive border as illegals continue to flood into the country. We have no way effective means of vetting friend or foe, as the invasion continues.

A safe border is clearly a national security issue and one that our military is equipped to meet and enforce yet we aren’t allowing them to do their job. Instead, we have elected to have massive military bases in Germany and Korea to protect their borders but not our own.  Let’s not forget that those bases were built for wars that ended sixty years ago.

If you go to any foreign country and ask the generals how they would defend their country, they will explain how to defend the terrain, the key choke points, as well as the easiest places to defend. They can do so because that is how they have been trained: to protect their country. Now, go ask any U.S general how they would defend this nation from an enemy invasion and I guarantee you they would have no idea because it is not mentioned or taught in any of the three branches of the service. But ask them, how they would invade Russia, Iran, Iraq, etc.. and they will have a  plan to do so. That is what we do and how we train our military: to attack not defend. The whole notion is so absurd and irresponsible that were it not so disastrous it would be comedic. Under the guise of gender equality we are going to export our female citizens to attack other countries.

The fact is that the U.S engages in wars with no hope of winning or justification for so doing.  Personally I do not trust the leadership in Washington to know how to fight or protect the troops once engaged in combat.  Just look at the rules of engagement that our troops are burdened with and the countless limbs and lives that have been lost because of them.  General McCrystal, U.S.Commander in Afghanistan, had a minor mutiny on his hands when we he explained the rules of engagement to his troops (as detailed in the book The Operators).

Additionally, we have a real disconnect between the leaders in Washington and the military. Bill Clinton actively evaded the draft but had no problem sending other people’s children off to war. The fantastic film Black Hawk Down will give you a good idea of the sacrifices made by the troops he sent to do battle. George Bush and Dick Cheney led us into Iraq and Afghanistan, yet both found ways to avoid going to Vietnam.  I find it totally inappropriate that our leaders spend time golfing and vacationing while our troops are at war. President Obama has been the worst of the bunch. To his credit, George W. Bush actually quit playing golf once the Iraq war began.

While the law mandating registration for females has not yet been changed, it seems inevitable that it will be.  For some reason, there has been very little coverage  and therefore, little or no outrage.  Part of me thinks that people are not connecting the dots. The depth of our government sickness continues to show no limits. It is an unspeakable disgrace that our country would be prepared to send young girls off to fight. Pondering this latest intention by our government has lead me to the point where I have lost all faith in our leaders and those who serve their administrations at every level. Military leaders know this plan to be absurd. The Marine Corps has gone on record saying it thinks this plan is insane and have yet to find one female able to complete the Marine Corps Infantry Officer program. The Navy has been integrating women onto their ships for years with disastrous results.  It is common knowledge within the Navy the integration of men and women on ships has resulted in an untold and under-reported number of pregnancies. It is not uncommon for war ships to make continuous stops to send back impregnated women to the States for treatment.  Aside from the pregnancies, yet more children will end up being born to single mothers; the economically and socially most disadvantaged demographic.

The old adage of “women and children first” was a siren song to protect our most valuable assets in times of emergency or war. Yet we stand on the precipice of sending that treasure not only into battle but also on the front lines of combat.  They will be sent not to protect our freedoms but to attack our latest enemy.

The feminists and their ilk who promote this nonsense will never be on the front lines. Neither will the privileged political class. Do you really think the Clinton or Obama daughters will ever join the military? It will be my daughters and your daughters who take up those battles and whose lives will be forever and irrevocably altered.  My daughters are not feminists and have not asked for this reality. But it will be them who will be told to pay the price.

This time, the Clark family will not be going.

Steve

sleeclark@gmail.com

Planned Parenthood’s House of Horrors

In Jewish mysticism, commonly known as Kabbalah, the belief is that when the Messiah comes there will be a new covenant based upon a second circumcision…the circumcision of our hearts. The meaning is clear.

What the Messianic era will usher in is a removal of the foreskin over humanity’s “hardened heart” as exhibited by our propensity to be aware of the suffering of fellow humans and remain silent in the face of such suffering.

Repair

If a Messianic era is at hand, it will surely be hastened by the depravity of Planned Parenthood and our silence in the face of it.

It is now impossible to claim innocence or ignorance of the barbarity and torture inflicted by the publicly funded killing machine known as Planned Parenthood. As if the first few videos released by The Center for Medical Research were not horrifying enough, the latest one, and the accompanying testimony of a former employee, goes beyond what a civilized society can justify.

Here is an excerpt from the former employee that accompanies the video:

“O’Donnell says, I am sitting here looking at this fetus and its heart is beating and I don’t know what to think.’” She said she didn’t know if  the child was alive or dead but ‘it had a face. It wasn’t completely torn up. Its nose was very pronounced. It had eyelids and its mouth was pronounced.’”

“The medical technician said the child was so intact that they could ‘procure a lot from it. We’re going to procure a brain.’ The tech told O’Donnell they would need to go through the face. The medical tech took scissors and cut through the child’s lower jaw up through the mouth. O’Donnell was directed to cut the rest of the way through ‘the middle of the face.”

Who are we and what have we become?

There are stages to this decent into Hell. First, there is a society that legalizes killing of the unborn. Second, there is a business culture that seeks to profit off of that killing. Third, there is the revelation that inhumanity and torture are occurring followed by the absence of an immediate termination of the process with condemnation and prosecution of the specific entity guilty of these acts.

Instead, as with my neighbor who is Pro-Choice, many choose to turn a blind eye. A week ago, I forwarded to her a link to one of the Planned Parenthood undercover videos. I suggested she watch it beginning to end and then tell me she remains Pro-Choice. She agreed to do so. Yesterday, she told me that as of yet, she has been unable to make herself watch.

Like ISIS, evil unmasked does not disappear simply by turning a blind eye.

We have many issues to face and most of them are potentially disastrous. From the economy to the border to ISIS we are being challenged on every front. We are overwhelmed personally and doing our best to emotionally and financially survive day to day.

The economy will take time and creative effort to resolve. The border will take new leadership, time-consuming construction and technological oversight. ISIS will take national resolve and a global coalition. But Planned Parenthood? It will take no more than seven days of public outcry to stop the torture being committed daily within our borders. It will take no more than you and me calling, writing, marching and taking nothing less than full capitulation on the part of Congress to stop the public funds from flowing into this house of horrors and to shut them down. For a society that has come to love instant everything this should have great appeal.

As much as I would like to live in a world where the lion lays down with the lamb, we will not see such a day while our hearts are hardened. And, having learned from the lesson of Pharaoh’s total destruction because he continued to “harden his heart,” I prefer to heed the call before our Creator needs to intervene, attach blame and exact retribution.

Yesterday I listened to a Q&A between Hilary Clinton and a representative of Black Lives Matter. In answering his question about how we go about changing the system in which police persecute Blacks, her reply was, “Look, I don’t believe you change hearts,” Clinton said, arguing that the movement can’t change deep seated racism. “I believe you change laws, you change allocation of resources, you change the way systems operate. You’re not going to change every heart. You’re not.”

If we can’t change our hearts when we are face to face with torture or inhumanity or prejudice…then we are done. It is exactly the gift of Free Will which enables us to change our hearts when we choose to behave from our higher, and not lower, selves. If we think and act as if legislation can dictate and enforce morality, ethics and compassion then we have missed the purpose and meaning of life.

The purpose and meaning of live is to choose. When we choose poorly we get to choose again until we choose wisely. Free Will is an individual gift not a collective one. With it comes personal responsibility for its best and highest use.

In Judaism the concept of “tikkun olam” means to repair the world. We are here to heal the world by our thoughts, deeds and actions not make it more grotesque. There can be no question that the slaughter, torture and profiteering being perpetrated by Planned Parenthood are destruction at its worst.

We are here to heal the world. Let us begin now by eradicating the disease called Planned Parenthood.

Carole