Posts Tagged ‘Americans’

19th Amendment — 90 years old

A few days ago, August 26, the anniversary of when the 19th amendment was enacted, came and went and I didn’t hear a mention of it!  Okay, I am living overseas, but it didn’t even show on any of the news network websites that I looked at.  And why is this something that bothers me… The 19th amendment gave women the right to vote!!!!

So many young girls/women don’t understand that it was less than 100 years ago that women received the right to vote.  And it was women like Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott and Susan B. Anthony that got the ball rolling.  I wish that more was taught in the schools about these amazing women.  And just maybe we can find role models for our daughters that do not include Paris Hilton, Brittany Spears and Lindsay Lohan!!!

If it werent’ for the woman of the United States Suffrage Movement, women would still be unable to vote, not own property and you would never see them holding office or in the military!  Take some time to learn about these women.  You may be surprise about what they did for you and the women that came before you!


Well, I’m Getting Less Conflicted

A few days ago I wrote about my mixed feelings about building a mosque at Ground Zero.  (You can read that here.)  And now that I’ve heard a bit more news about the man responsible for the building of the mosque, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, I am getting less conflicted.  His beliefs are warped in my opinion.  Going as far as to say that Osama Bin Laden was made in the USA and that US policies caused the 9/11 attacks.  And now it seems as if President Obama is sponsoring a trip to the Middle East being led by this man. 

I tried to find out more information about this man in mainstream news networks, but the only network that has anything about him is FOX News.  (See the video here.)    ABC and CNN have the same article about the middle east trip that is planned but not substance of exactly who this man is.  I really think that before anyone allows this mosque to be built.  The people who are building this Muslim center need to be looked into. 

Don’t get me wrong, I still believe in freedom of religion, but I think that anyone that is building a center (religious or otherwise) needs to have the true intent shown.  Just like I wouldn’t want the Westboro Baptist Church building a religious center near me or my family.  (That link will lead you to Wikipedia, because I don’t want to add any traffic their rubbish of a website.)  When people use the guise of religion, they need to remember that hate is not/should not be part of their faith.

Ground Zero Mosque — I’m Conflicted

Here’s the basics about me — Christian, American, Mom, Army Wife, New Yorker….  And I am conflicted about the building of a mosque at Ground Zero. 

For some people this is very black and white.  But as an American, I believe in freedom of religion.  Something that others do not have in other countries.  Even in Iraq, Christians have a hard time worshiping the way they choose.  My husband served with an Iraqi soldier that was Catholic.  He kept his family in a far away location and told my husband that because their church had been burnt down, they had to worship when and where they could.  Being Catholic myself, I sent this soldier a set of rosary beads that I made for him and my husband, with my blessing, gave him the patron saint medals that I asked hubby to carry with him while deployed.  My heart ached for this man and his family.  They were not as fortunate as Americans.

The Quakers and the Puritans came to America in order to  escape religious persecution.  I won’t tell you that all was rosy for them once they got here, but it was easier than if they had stayed in England.  But they had a choice. 

As a New Yorker and an Army wife, the September 11 attacks changed my life in many ways.  I had been married for less than a year and was expecting our first child.  We never thought that he would be deployed during war-time.  War didn’t seem like something to consider.  And the attack was in my backyard.  I have friends that watch the towers come down from where they lived and worked.  I was angry for a long, long time!  I still get angry, but my anger changed over time.  First it was the loss of life and destruction, but now, the time my husband leaves his family, leaves me. 

So how can these people who decided to build this mosque think that it was a good thing.  I know that it was not them that did it and we should not blame the religion.  Any type of radical religion is dangerous and, as I see it, corrupt.  But unfortunately, this religion is where these radical terrorists came from. 

While on one hand, I believe in freedom of religion, I also think that the organizers are being insensitive.

Any thoughts?  Let me know.

Is being liberal a bad thing?!

I celebrated my friend’s 40th birthday yesterday.  He, his wife and I have all been friends since college and it has been a long time since we’ve seen each other.  In the morning, I looked up what happened on this day in history.  I do this often and it is something fun to see who he shared his birthday with (We thought it was cool that his birthday was shared with Thomas Magnum!) and other historical events.  I also decided to do this again this morning.

On my search today, August 5, there was a significant birth and death, but I’m sure that few people even know these ladies.  It was the birth of Mary Ritter Beard and the death of Millicent Garrett Fawcett.  Both ladies were part of the women’s suffrage.  Ms. Beard in both the United States and Great Britain, and Ms. Fawcett in Great Britain.  I read about what these ladies did.  And as I read, I realized that these ladies were extremely liberal for the time that they lived.  They did things that were not the “norm” of that time and wanted massive change!

For the most part, people think that because I am married to a soldier that I am very conservative.  But if you get to know me, you will realize that I am one that is not easily labeled.  It has been often said that I am too liberal to be a republican, but to conservative to be a democrat.  I’m rather stuck in the middle. 

So the next time that someone scoffs at a liberal idea, remind them that some liberal ideas are not all bad.  If they were, women may still not have the right to vote or own property!!!

Happy 4th of July!!! — Yes, I’m a bit early!

Today my family will be celebrating the 4th of July!  Yes, we are 8 days early, but there is a method to the madness!

We are at an overseas, joint service base and we have protestors.  They post these funny signs asking for independence from the United States and the fly our American flag upside down.  It’s very hurtful to see.  Even my children say how rude it is.  My oldest (8 years old) said that they should be arrested from protesting!  We had a long talk about freedom of speech and how protest can be a good thing!  The sad part is that I don’t even think these protestors know what they are protesting.  The base and the protestors have been here the same amount of time!  I’m all for protesting if you have a good, valid reason!  So, since they will be protesting July 4 — we celebrate early!

Now here we are, all dressed in our red, white and blue outfits (Thanks to Mom for purchasing and mailing them early!) and ready to head out to celebrate!  It will be a day of good food, good fun, and good friends!!!

It’s so hard to be away from home!

People often ask me if I like being an Army wife.  And overall, I do… but sometimes it can be so hard to be away from home.

I have a close-knit family.  I talk to my sister almost daily.  She lives in Nevada and there is an eight-hour time change between us.  But every morning on her way to work, she calls me.  Sometimes we get 5 minutes or, if I’m lucky and she’s stuck in traffic, I get 30 minutes.  It is the best time of my day.  Even my kids know that when the phone rings at that time of day, it’s my time with my sister.

But if the events that happened 10 years ago were just a bit different, I may not have my sister to talk too.  She was driving to work when a shift worker was on his way home t-boned her vehicle.  He was drunk and unharmed.  My sister, on the other hand, had broken every rib on her left side, a broken pelvic bone and a ruptured spleen.  Once in surgery, they realized that she had bleeding in her chest.  When they went to repair it, the aorta tore away from her heart.  As the doctor told us, “she flat lined for 93 seconds and we stitched like hell”.  Thankfully, she survived.  She has scars physically and we all have mental scars from that day.  This is when the lifestyle that my husband and I choose is hard.

At the time, I was a newlywed getting ready to celebrate my first Christmas with my husband.  We were living in Alaska.  It took me 24 hours to get to the hospital.  After my sister was in good and stable condition, one of the nurses told me that their biggest fear is that we would not get there in time.  I can’t imagine my sister dying, let alone, dying without family with her. 

Why am I sharing this story… well, twice in the last few months, I’ve been here in England and my family (biological and Army) could have used my help.  Help with meals, child care, hugs… but from here all I can do is pray.  Dont’ get me wrong — I pray A LOT.  I’m a Christian and believe in the power of prayer.  But sometimes when all you can do is pray, you feel helpless.

This is when your Army family can be such a wonderful help and why I always urge spouses to get involved in as many aspects of the Army as you can.  Our coffee group has a meals committee that makes meals for families that have a new baby, just moved, emergency sickness, etc.  Also, because we have all become friends, we are there to watch children for each other when there is an emergency.  (Like the 1:00am phone call from my friend in labor!)  Get involved so that you have a support system in place.  I say prayers of thanksgiving for the Army family that I’ve become a part of.  They may not be able to replace my sister, mom or dad, but they make a really great substitute!

National Women’s History Month

I’m a little behind on this and really can not believe that I forgot that March is National Women’s History Month. This year’s theme is “Women Taking the Lead to Save Our Planet”. And because my family tries hard to reduce, reuse and recycle and limit our carbon imprint on the world, I love this theme.  Click here to see the White House press release.  And the following two sites have wonderful information too.  The National Women’s History Project has information on the 2009 honorees and great information on why they do what they do!  Also, to my surprise, the National Parks Service has great information on women in history and places you can go and visit to learn more.  (The have listed the Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum.  My family visited there on a recent trip to Atchison, Kansas and we LOVED it.)  But, since I am an Army wife, I can not just focus on the theme this year! 

As a little girl, I remember hearing the story of Molly Pitcher (aka Mary Ludwig Hays McCauley) and how she continued to fire that cannon during the Revolutionary War.  And the story of Clara Barton and how she helped create the American Red Cross.  But the only references I ever had about women in the Army was from watching M*A*S*H!!  Now that is not the best reference for learning anything about the Army, even if it is a classic TV show!!

The US Army has put together an amazing website that includes a timeline, history and profiles of all things that has to do with the history of women in the US Army.  Women in the US Army website, not only highlights women of the past, but women who are currently serving as soldiers now.  I strongly urge you to take a good look at this website.  Since I just found it today, I am going to share it with my seven-year old daughter tonight.  And I also hope that one day we will be able to visit the US Army Women’s Museum at Ft Lee, Virginia.  I hope by sharing this with my children that they will understand that they really can do anything they won’t to do — regardless of sex or race! 

I also hope that all of you will share this with young women — and men — so that they can see that amazing things in history are not just something done by the men in our history books!