This is our time – to stand

If we are not actively involved in helping with a solution, we really have no credibility in complaining about the problem. 

This is a critical time in history. Each of us, at some point in the future, will need to give an accounting of what we did or didn’t do to make things better.

But be cautious; more often than not, it is the quiet voice of reason that pierces more deeply than the screams and shouts of a frenzied mob.

I’m not going to tell you what positions you should or shouldn’t take, that is your responsibility and yours alone.

But I am going to urge you to do something productive in helping each of us awake from our comfort zone and stand tall in our beliefs, regardless of the consequences.

For my part, I’m starting with a letter to my elected representatives. As a citizen it is not only my right, but my responsibility. Here’s a copy of what I’ve come up with:

Dear Madam or Sir; 

We are in crisis as a nation, and as a people.

We could waste time arguing each other’s points about how we got here, whose fault it is, and all the minutia supporting opposing views or rationalizations for questionable behaviors.

But there simply isn’t time.

The time of fence sitting, political safeguarding, and just trying to keep our heads down in order to avoid the firestorms is over.

Each generation has the responsibility to stand up and be counted on which side of the line we stand.

This is our time.

As your constituent, I need to know exactly where you stand, and more importantly, precisely what is your plan of action regarding this never-ending flow of national crises.

  • Do you still believe that you can work with President Trump in governing our country; and if so, why?
  • Beyond “strongly condemning” the brazen anti-Semitic and racial venom spewed in Charlottesville, what actions will you take to ensure history does NOT repeat itself?
  • At what point will your own moral compass not allow you to keep rationalizing irrational behavior under the guise of doing “the greater good”?
  • Are you willing to act courageously now in fighting for what is right, even if doing so compromises your reelection ambitions?  
  • Will you put America as a whole first, before partisan agendas?

You see, I need you to recognize that this is YOUR time to make your stand, and let me know just what that stand is.

Because it’s also MY time to do the same.

It’s my responsibility to seek out and elect people who are work horses and not show horses, people who understand that it is the culmination of all the small decisions that lead to the ability to make the great decisions, and people who are more concerned about doing right than merely being reelected.

I simply need to know if you are one of those people.

Sincerely,

Greg Batty

Your communication may be the same, or it may be a polar opposite of the one above. What matters most, I think, is that you care enough to pen a letter and send it on.

This really is OUR time – to stand.

It may be alone, or it could be together.

But we’ll never know until we step forward.

Why We Are Setting Trump Up To Fail

All the madness is almost over.

Just a few more days and we can finally put all of this behind us.

Right?

Wrong.

The end of the election is only the beginning.

If we thought things were bad up to now…

elephant-2There’s an elephant in the room that people seem reluctant to recognize.

Perhaps it’s anxiety over further stigmatizing mental illness; perhaps it’s unfamiliarity with the disease; perhaps it’s just fear of being another in a long list of defendants on Donald Trump’s list of law suits.

Being mentally ill myself, I may be in a position to speak from experience and understanding in recognizing it in another.

As near as I can tell, Donald Trump is mentally ill.

Severely so.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder: A mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for admiration and a lack of empathy for others. But behind the mask of ultra-confidence lies a fragile self-esteem that’s vulnerable to the slightest criticism.

When a mental illness has the added label of being a “personality disorder” it indicates an increased difficulty in managing that particular illness.

Personality Disorder: A deeply ingrained and maladaptive pattern of behavior of a specified kind, typically manifest by the time one reaches adolescence and causing long-term difficulties in personal relationships or in functioning in society.

I won’t insult your intelligence by trying to point out how this clearly describes Donald Trump. I also won’t take the time to argue if he is responsible or culpable for his actions or not.

There simply isn’t time.

ballotWhat I will strenuously state is that due to this illness, he is simply not physically or biologically capable of most jobs in society where he must lead while also simultaneously working with people.

Virtually the country unanimously agrees that the mentally ill should be kept from weapons that could be used to harm themselves or others.

Being Commander In Chief and having the final word on a nuclear arsenal would most definitely qualify as a weapon; and we haven’t had the full disclosure of a background check.

That alone is enough to recognize the danger of a Trump presidency.

But if that doesn’t do it, let’s take a look at what happens AFTER the inauguration:

He will be attacked and shunned and ridiculed and vilified; that just comes with the job. Having been snubbed by the New York Billionaire society as well as the majority of the political world, he will frantically search for validation abroad. He simply must have the chance to give those billionaire “buffoons” the finger.

But when he enters the international arena with other leaders of democratic and freedom-loving nations, they will see him for who and what he really is.

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They already do.

And they will dismiss him – if not physically then certainly mentally and emotionally.

There will be no respect, which he so desperately needs.

So who does that leave for him to seek out for sycophantic support?

Those ruthless, billionaire dictators and despots who are so eager to get him under their thumbs.

In reality, by electing Donald Trump we will be inflicting a wound that will back this injured animal into a corner.

And that is when someone in pain and humiliation is the most dangerous.

A narcissist does not comprehend or know how to retreat, to compromise, to give in.

anger4That only leaves one option: die trying.

So you see, by electing him we are condemning him to fail.

As well as all of us along with him.

Please remember that the real period of difficulty doesn’t end with November 8; it begins November 9.

Please, I beg you – don’t set us up to fail.

Your life matters – to me

Black lives matter.

Blue lives matter.

All lives matter.

There is no argument that these are true statements.

So why is there so much controversy?

protest3I wonder if it is because we can’t get past the blanket of color or category to see into the personal life of a real person.

Perhaps we’d be better served to say:

Philando Castile’s life matters.

Brent Thompson’s life matters.

Cheyenne Stewart’s life matters.

It’s true that death doesn’t somehow hurt more if you are black, or a police officer, or an innocent child.

But it doesn’t hurt any less either.

Continue reading Your life matters – to me

To those who feel helpless watching a loved one slipping into madness

This is part of a series of letters to those who may feel lost. Sometimes when we are down, discovering something in the mailbox is just the thing.

It reminds us that we aren’t as alone as we think.

Today I defer the writing to my incredibly talented and insightful daughter Alex.

A few months ago she read a humorous post online that had a throwaway sentence along the lines of “I literally went crazy. Lost my mind.”

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She thought the post was funny and didn’t think anything of it. However, someone read and responded and was offended, saying things like “How dare you make light of a serious thing” and “You don’t even know what it’s like.”

It made her pause and think about what she would say if she had been the original poster.

The following is a thoughtful response to someone who deserves to hear from someone who truly does know what it is like.

Let’s call her Susan.

Dear Susan,

To be fair, this can be a really triggering topic for some people, and for that I do apologize. I’m sorry that you’re hurting.

However, I see the humor in it.

Continue reading To those who feel helpless watching a loved one slipping into madness

To those feeling themselves slipping into madness

This is part of a series of letters to those who may feel lost. Sometimes when we are down, discovering something in the mailbox is just the thing.

It reminds us that we aren’t as alone as we think.

Today I write to a young man who feels like he is losing his mind, and it’s making him crazy – because it’s inconceivable to him that he could actually be crazy.

Let’s call him Adam.

question mark6Dear Adam,

What is real?

Lately I would imagine that has become a question you’d rather not ask, because you aren’t really sure of the answer.

Scary, I know.

One of the hardest things is trying to find the words to explain it to those around you.

You know inside, even though you don’t want to acknowledge it, that something is very, very wrong. But you have told yourself that if you just give it some time, you’ll work your way through it.

And it will get better.

Kind of like a cold.

Or a broken leg.

I wish it could be that simple, but it’s not. Here’s the hard truth:

This isn’t going to just go away; most people won’t understand that something is really wrong until it’s too late and something bad has happened; and all of your natural instincts to fight it are pretty much going to make it worse.

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Reassuring, right?

So, what’s a guy to do?

It kind of sounds crazy, but accepting that you are a little crazy will, in the end, make you less crazy.

Continue reading To those feeling themselves slipping into madness

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain.”