Posted in activism, anxiety, C-PTSD, chronic pain, community, depression, disability, domestic abuse, gender, health, history, life, medical, PTSD, semicolon, sexual assault, society

1/20/18: March For Me

March for me.
I survived.
But still I live
In fear of
Repercussions.

March for me.
I am disabled
And cannot walk far.

March for me.
I am anxious in crowds.
And my voice wavers.

March for me.
I have C-PTSD.
I cannot stand being
Touched by men.

March for me.
For walking is too much
For me to handle.

March for me.
For I cannot
March
For myself.

~A

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Posted in activism, anxiety, community, depression, faith, family, friends, grief, homeless, housing, life, poetry, society, urgent, writing

11/18: Feeling Broken

Something happened today.
Something that ripped me to pieces.
I want to believe there are humans
Who understand what being
HUMAN
Is like.
What being
HOMELESS
Is like.
My day was okay.
Except one brief moment.
That formed a black cloud
Over my head.
My soul is soaked through.
My heart and mind
Need to be wrung out.
The cloud weighed me down.
I wonder now.
Who among us
Has compassion?
A safe place for a woman and her cat?
When the world buckles underneath you,
Who do you turn to when it makes you fall?
When the help you need the most is not the help family can give you?
Where do you go?
When you scream for help, but there is
None to be found.
~A.
November 2017

Posted in anxiety, C-PTSD, cats, chronic pain, community, depression, disability, eviction, faith, friends, gender, health, history, individuality, job hunting, life, medical, Personal, PTSD, sexual assault, society

10/16: Wake Up Tomorrow #metoo

TW/CW: Talk of suicide, sexual assault, C-PTSD, etc…

I’ve talked about all of these things in spades over the lifespan of this blog. With the #metoo tag flying around on FB and Twitter the last two days, I felt like expanding on mine.

Now, I have (at some point) ticked off all the times I was sexually assaulted.

  • At 17, by a 22 y.o. acquaintance.
  • At 19, by a blind date. Tried to force me to perform oral on him, pushing my head down. I broke free and threatened to call the police.
  • At 19, by a guy I met at a Twelfth Night event… friends invited him to our Rocky Horror outing later that evening. While he had been in costume, he was mostly a gentleman (save for trying to un-lace my bodice in public)
  • At 21/22. After 6 weeks in an increasingly abusive relationship, I started to pull away from him, which he noticed. He spent the next 2 and a half months raping and assaulting me (using various areas of my body to ‘get his rocks off’) all against my will. I cried, I begged, I said no every damn time, but even making me bleed repeatedly didn’t matter to him. This happened 2-3 times a week… on a good week.

Those are the major, or most distinctive, events. Getting catcalled, being told by some older guy in Chicago (as we passed each other in the crosswalk) that “damn, you got some bigguns!” … no matter what I’m wearing, what my body language is saying (usually “don’t fucking get near me, asshole”), what I’m doing, I’ve had hands brush against my butt, breasts, etc… hands that should stay up near my shoulders wandering down… at a club one night (partly why I fucking HATE clubs) getting dragged out onto the dance floor and made to dance with some stranger, who kept putting his hand on my thigh and slipping it up to my hip under my skirt (which wasn’t that fucking long to begin with). I was 18, I think. It was an “Under 21” club.

Do I need to go on? I think I’ve made my point.

This shit happens every damn day to women of all skin colors, sexualities, cis or trans… you name it. Fuck, I got catcalled just a month or so ago… wearing all baggy grungy clothes heading to the MAX stop (I think I was going to an appt or something). Me with my mohawk and baggy clothes and beat up sneakers and a cane… getting catcalled.


I’ve also, as I think I’ve said in previous posts, had many phases or short contemplations of suicide. High school, a period in my 30’s when my asshole doctor decided to put me on Prozac, which made me want to slit my fucking wrists so badly, it outdid the suicidal ideations of my high school years. That shit fucked me up so badly.

In the past couple of years, I’ve had shorter bursts of contemplating it. Usually when I’ve been in full panic mode over possible eviction as well as earlier this year with the eviction itself. I lost count how many times I sat on my bed or my couch … or in the bathtub … thinking of why the fuck I should keep living? Then I got either of the girls, Portia or JoJo when she was still alive, just coming up to me and purring and either nudging me or tapping my arm or leg with a paw.


Life isn’t easy. I’m dealing with C-PTSD, my asshole ex cyberstalking me like I’m his damn “internet chew toy” … being homeless in a tentative situation that needs to come to an end, but my means to get back into my own place again are virtually non-existent. Trying to finish grad school, find decent work, organize my stuff in storage, handle medical and dental appts, go on tasks to make some income, and remember to take my meds and eat decently. Some of those, especially the later things I listed, are basic, normal-ish things I can handle… working all the big stuff around them is the hardest part. With chronic fatigue and pain, getting up at a decent hour that isn’t close to noon, but earlier in the day, is not always easy to do.


So, you may wonder what the subject heading of this post means… here’s my lesson and philosophy behind it:

Look back up at all the shit I’ve been through. Add verbal and emotional abuse by some family, used and abused by people I thought were friends, etc… I’ve dealt with a lot.

Wake Up Tomorrow

I adopted this years ago during a bad run… I think it was later in high school. Say you had one of THE shittiest days you can remember in recent months. Everything went wrong and in some seemingly catastrophic way, or at least that’s how it feels. You may already be battling a period of depression or severe pain. You contemplate ending things. You’re absolutely SURE tomorrow is going to also suck and you can’t imagine things getting better any time soon.

So you think about it.

But you can’t guarantee tomorrow will suck. Shit, you don’t know what will happen tomorrow, or the day after, or the day after that. Maybe it’ll suck, maybe it’ll be awesome, but you won’t know unless you wake up tomorrow. And the days following it. You can’t know for sure that it’ll be horrendously awful. Unless you wake up tomorrow. Go to sleep, get some rest, cry if you need to (man, I’m surprised the tear stains aren’t permanent on my face by now), and wake up tomorrow. Sounds simple, I know. Take each and every day as it comes.

Will that work for everyone dealing with shit? No. I know it works for me. I’ve had friends and a few strangers, in the past 24 hours or so, call me brave. I’ve done therapy off and on since I was 16. I understand so much about my past, but I don’t really know how I’m getting through it… except for one thing:

I wake up every day.

I’ve had close calls, due to medical stuff, not attempts on my part, and they’ve taught me this: Not everyone gets the chance to wake up the next day. No one knows when they’re going to die. The fact that, despite pain and all kinds of other things, I wake up every day and am able to feed my floofy monster kitty, that my heart is still pumping blood, my lungs are still taking in oxygen, my legs work… mostly. I have those days when my legs/back/feet/hips/knees/etc just rebel and go, “nope!! what was that about going somewhere today? yeah… not happening, bitch.”

Life isn’t easy. But I figure that as long as I keep waking up every day, I have a fighting chance to make things better. Never know unless you wake up.

~A

Posted in bugaboos, community, creativity, crowdfunding, dragon, emergency, eviction, friends, genealogy, grad school, history, homeless, housing, job hunting, life, music, Personal, research, storage, urgent, writing

9/6: No Soul-Sucking Allowed, Dammit (but #crowdfunding is)

I started this on Facebook, but opted to bring it over here. And yes, still #crowdfunding to get funds to save storage. 

This is only slightly tongue-in-cheek. Slightly.

My ideal work environment: not dealing with random humans. The occasional co-worker might be okay. I’m currently feeling a smidge Dragonish (i.e. anti-social), so occasional contact is okay.

And no cubicle farms. No/few phones. Email is preferred. I don’t stumble over my words as much. Also my foot doesn’t end up in my mouth as much. 

And not soul-sucking work. I’d like to keep my soul intact for a few more years. At least until I turn 50. Five more years is all I ask.

Let me enter data, do creative-ish things like websites or social media, have a variety of tasks/projects. Research. Gimme things to research. I lurv research. Just not medical, as they want bio degrees. I don’t have one of those. Research and write things. 

Pays well enough for me to move into a market rate studio close-in and cram the rest of my stuff into a smaller storage unit again. Also be able to pay for storage, utilities, Netflix and Hulu again, and eat without needing food stamps. Oh, and put money into savings and pay off a few bills.

*   *   *   *   *   *

Yeah… that shit would take a fucking miracle. I’m screwed.

~Dragon 

(Below is what I need to not lose my storage. Before the 15th)

Posted in chronic pain, community, creativity, crowdfunding, emergency, eviction, life, Personal, society, storage, urgent

5/16: running out of #crowdfunding time.

Share me! Help me make a miracle happen!

Quick begging- er- #crowdfunding post. My PT from yesterday has me down for the moment. Voc Rehab had to cancel as she is apparently out of the office… at least this time I checked my phone before leaving. *sigh*

What can I say to prove this is real? 

Here’s some of it, before the space you see got packed with furniture and more boxes. This really is virtually my whole life about to be auctioned away. My costumes and a few Steampunk projects, among so much more… 


I’m not sure where else to turn. Two days to pull off a miracle.

~Amanda 

Posted in activism, bigotry, community, crowdfunding, faith, life, peace, Personal, politics, society, storage

4/28: More on Peace & #crowdfunding

Crowdfunding… well, yeah. Are ya’ll sick of it yet? I know many of my friends are living paycheck to paycheck as it is… but my request is that even if you can’t donate, share my posts or the YouCaring campaign with people you know. Even if we have 40+ friends in common, you’ll have people among your friends that I won’t know and maybe they can help. (Most of what’s showing on the YC campaign has long been used for things like moving van, etc)

storage money owed: 642
AS of 4/15, this is what I owe. I don’t know if the auction fee was added by this point.

Now, more on Peace. I was in a strange frame of mind last night when I wrote that post. Here’s my deal: I grew up with bigotry, as I have stated many times, and while I don’t fully understand WHY people hate (and really, it’s likely as many reasons as there are bigots) I do know that it won’t get us anywhere if we keep up the hate and anger from all sides. Yes, bigots tend to incite violence. Did you see the article about Saffiyah Khan in England who approached one of the loudest bigots at a rally of theirs and just stood there, smiling? Be more like her. Deflect and protect yourself, but don’t throw the proverbial first punch. If you can’t control your anger, walk away. Please.

Do I slip up and go on angry rants and call shitty politicians and wannabe politicians nasty names? Sure. But I don’t attack in general. I am a die-hard Liberal, and grew up with Republican parents (My dad joked when I registered to vote, “where did we go wrong with you?” smiling the whole time. He was more liberal than his voting choices let others to believe).  During the election mess the last year or more, I noticed that some Republicans were really more middle-of-the-road than they’d like to think they are. So, knowing my dad and some of those politicians stances, I refuse to lump ALL Republicans together. I try not to, at least. Sometimes, they just need to take a step back and keep their mouths shut, lest they say something so insanely stupid I cringe.

I think what bothers me the most about many Republican politicians and their followers is that they try to claim themselves Christians, while spewing bigotry and judgment. But what did Jesus teach? Certainly not hate. Not bigotry. And judgment isn’t our job. For those who believe, judgment is God’s job, not ours. To call oneself a Christian, you must follow the teachings of Jesus. He taught love, acceptance, humility, among many other things. Not hate. If you’re going to call yourself a Christian, try following His teachings. I’ve read them, have you?

Back to Peace. The way that Saffiyah Khan handled herself was considerably more Christ-like than all of the shouting and hate and bigotry I’ve seen from people who consider themselves Christians. To hate so strongly, to use force against someone just because they’re different, to incite violence in the name of God… that is not what Jesus taught. Are there people of other faiths who show hate and use violence? Yes. I’m not denying that. But those individuals are a small fraction of the people of those faiths. I’ve seen more Muslims be helpful and kind in recent months than I have of people who consider themselves Christians. I know Atheists who are kinder. I also know some Atheists who hate as much as those from different religions.

We’ve done enough damage to ourselves and our planet with all of this hate. Don’t get me started on greed. That’s destroying the planet just as much.

We can do better.

We have to.

This is our only planet.

And underneath all of our differences, we bleed the same color of blood, have the same organs. You get the idea. Instead of stooping to the level of the bigots, be better. Show peace. Smile, as Saffiyah Khan did. We may not change it all over night, or even within one generation, but if we choose peace over violence, change for the better will happen.

~Peace Penguin

Posted in activism, crowdfunding, eviction, family, life, Personal, society

Determined & Non-Traditional Woman

I have my times when I do ask for help. I have to. I prefer being independent, but even I have to rely on others at times. But this doesn’t apply to my whole life.

Including today’s client, I’ve had a few clients verbally applaud me for doing furniture assembly. The stereotype of construction-like things is traditionally male. But I’m not exactly traditional.

I grew up in a fixer-upper house and was my dad’s mini-me shadow. I knew hand tools -and how to use them- by the time I started kindergarten. I was about that age when I “helped” my dad and siblings with the substrate plywood layer on the flat roof of an addition to the house. I wasn’t very good at getting the nails hammered in right, but I still helped. I grew up watching This Old House with my dad. I still watch it.

When I was 19 and moved into my first apartment an hour away from my parents, I soon realized I was in a bad neighborhood, and being a suburban kid mostly sheltered from all of that, I bought a chain to put on my door. For a few weeks, I asked my male cousins and my dad if they could come over and install it.

After a few weeks, I gave up asking and headed to the store to buy my own damn screwdrivers and tools. I installed that chain myself. That was a turning point for me.

Over the years I’ve built basic furniture (the guys at HomeD always look at me funny), repaired old furniture, assembled more IKEA than most people I know… you get the idea.

So most of the tasks I get hired for are for assembling stuff from IKEA and Wayfair (do NOT get me started on them). To me, it’s just something I know how to do. Nothing spectacular. It never really occurred to me that this was anything different than the norm.

I’m a computer geek and I assemble things. Two things that are traditionally male-oriented. What I’ve found in these gigs is that clients who are female and live alone appreciate that they can hire another woman instead of having concerns over their personal safety by hiring a strange man through an app on their phone.

It’s physical work. And with all of my injuries reminding me of their existence, I do walk away sore and sometimes in pain. Okay, usually in pain. But I enjoy helping people. I can’t stand for very long before the pain sets in, so retail jobs are pretty much out, but these occasional gigs are fine, as long as I have a day to recover.

I’m not perfect. I have plenty of failings. But I am empowered by the comments I get from clients. They appreciate that they’re seeing a woman doing tasks that aren’t traditionally “feminine.” Yeah, sometimes I wear skirts…. but I’m certainly not super-femme. I’m just me. Sometimes I need help, sometimes I don’t. I do what I can. And sometimes, that’s not “traditional.”

Which is fine with me.

~Amanda

Posted in bigotry, crowdfunding, dragon, eviction, family, Personal, politics, poverty line, society

What Dragon Wants for Christmas & #crowdfunding

What does Dragon want for Christmas? On the personal side: rent and storage covered/caught up, and at least some interviews instead of flat-out rejections before I get a chance. A job offer would be even better.

Then there’s the general stuff. 2016 has been a shitty year all around. For myself, the mess of surviving school and job hunting going nowhere. That fog that has settled in around me, where I feel trapped, stuck. Then all the other suckyness around us: terrorist attacks to hate crimes on the rise, from losing David Bowie to …. well, countless others. Friends losing family and the world feeling like we’re going to implode from the anger and fear and sadness.

So, despite certain political things going all sideways down a dark path, my wish for Christmas and all the holidays is that we can find a little peace. I know it isn’t easy. I look at the uptick in swastikas (and I reserve the right to make fun of the people who can’t draw them properly). We are all human, underneath out different skin colors or religions or how much we make or don’t make… whether we need to be on food stamps just to eat or have money to spare…. white, black, native, and everything and everyone in between. No matter our differences, no matter our views, we are ALL human beings. We all bleed the same color of blood. Have the same handful of blood types. Our organs are all in the same general places and work the same way (or should, for those who have something wrong), and our skeletons are mostly the same.

Listen to those you would otherwise ignore. Look past your fear and try to learn from those who are different than you. For, even though I pointed out the fact we are all the same underneath, those differences are what make each of us unique. None of us are the same as each other. So learn. Listen. Look for the little things that came put a smile on your face, but also reach out to those who may have a hard time seeing those things and listen… sometimes paying attention is all someone needs. To know that someone cares enough to listen to them, to give them a little attention. Compassion. I see those qualities in the people some fear and hate the most. While I don’t really consider myself much of a Christian anymore (Spiritual Humanist is closer), I look at those who do consider themselves as such and I don’t see what Christ taught. What He showed. I see judgment and hate where there should be love and acceptance. I see “I got mine, screw you” where I should see “Here, have some of mine, I don’t need as much” … greed and contempt has become one norm in our society, where it should be the opposite.

Yes, I do wish for income and money to keep me and my cats housed and my stuff in storage safe…. but the big things need tending to as well. We can’t rebuild a strong, grounded, compassionate community without communication. We can be better than racism. We can DO better than hate. It won’t happen overnight. But it can happen.

Help where you can. Share my blog, donate if possible. And then go out there and think of others before yourself. Put the welfare of fellow human beings above your own greed and desires for things. You can’t take those things with you when you die, but your actions in the community will be your legacy long after you’re gone.

Yes, Dragon wants personal stability for Christmas…. but Dragon also wants community to go above and beyond where it’s been.

~Dragon

Posted in crowdfunding, dragon, emergency, society, writing

Frazzled Dragon #life #urgent #crowdfunding #community

Today, when I wrote the poem I posted earlier, I also wrote two others. They aren’t typed up, but they will be… I also have many more lurking in my head and in journals scattered around this apartment. I’ve been here nearly 7 1/2 years. I can’t afford to move right now. So I need to stay here. For the time being. Eventually, I will move on… but when I’m ready to do so.

I’m also trying to not get too stressed out, but this has been my life for over a year now. The job hunting, the stress of “where is rent coming from” and everything that comes with it. It’s difficult to be happy and social when you’re constantly worried about finances.

I am a writer, photographer, researcher, archivist, librarian, WordPress zombie (both .com and .org). I also do so many more things. If I were a dude, I’d be a “Renaissance Man” But I’m a woman, so I’m just this woman who does a lot of things, many of them pretty damn well. And yet, a decent non-retail job eludes me.

So this is where my spiel about COMMUNITY kinda comes in. Except I won’t go into the long version that’s been zipping around my brain for a while now. I will say this much: There was a time when people came together and helped out. I know not everyone has the money to help everyone. But people helped. When someone fell ill or had a baby or … whatever… the neighbors baked things and came over. Now, most of us don’t know our neighbors. We’ve become afraid of our own shadows. No trust, no faith in each other, no community. You can still see it in tiny pockets, but in most of our American society, it’s pretty nonexistent. My apartment building has brunches every few months and an annual BBQ… and in between, we may recognize each other around the area, but most of us don’t remember each others names (I’m terrible with that myself, but I own it). But beyond my building? I recognize faces of other neighbors, but I don’t know them at all. The community in our community is lacking. It’s vanishing. We don’t have each others’ backs. It’s to each their own. We helped, we protected, we watched out for problems, we cared. We listened. I don’t see that much anymore.

Well, I have stuff to do this weekend, and I need to catch up on my word count for NaNoWriMo. I’m a stubborn pain in the ass. My dad always told me to never give up on my writing… so I don’t. I may not always be working on it, but I’ll never walk away from it.

If you have a few minutes or a few dollars, please consider helping. A few minutes sharing my poetry posts or other posts and mentioning that I’m having trouble making ends meet. Even a little effort goes a long way. Spread the word and help someone in our global community get through another month.

~Dragon

Posted in bigotry, crowdfunding, dragon, emergency, politics, society

Dragon Observatory: Fear and Loathing (and #crowdfunding)

(Yes, I am still #crowdfunding… Help this dragon out one more month?)

(FYI: This post may or may not read a bit disjointed… I’m also cooking and doing dishes, so this will be written in between stirrings of the rice, etc)

An article I read a short while ago (after returning from my haircut) reminded me of a subject I’ve written about before. Fear and the Mob Mentality.

No, I’m not talking about gangsters and the like. Mob as in a lynch mob. A group of people who might normally behave respectably (or not, depends on the individuals) in society, but when confronted with a specific “thing,” they gather together with like-minded folks and go after said “thing.”

In many cases, these mobs form out of Fear.


But where does this Fear come from?

It can come from many places. Social conditioning and lack of knowledge are two that I see the most often. There are other places it can emerge from. My own Fear for many years came from escaping an abusive relationship and the subsequent online stalking and harassment from said former “partner.” (I hesitate referring to him as a partner namely because he was an abusive control freak who used many psychological tricks to push me down into a submissive role… JUST because I’m female. Anyone who knows me well enough knows damn well I’m NOT that submissive).

But in the case of mobs, it is typically one, or both, of the two bolded sources above. Because of my own experiences of living in Fear, I have my own unique insight into this. Also, I grew up with a parental source of bigotry and such, so I observed it there as well.

What we don’t know or understand, we tend to fear. Fear then mutates into Hate. Thus, mob rule. A certain political candidate, whose name will not be mentioned in this post, has captured that Fear and Hate and is capitalizing on it all over the place. Build a border, deny certain people entry, deport those already here, etc, etc….

Here’s the thing: If the bigots in question (not just the one running for office, but his vile little minions as well) actually sat down and talked (calmly) with some of the very people they’re verbally bashing, and LISTENED to them about their lives, their faith, their passions for life. If these people actually read the book of their faith, or talked to one of their local leaders about it. Asked questions and listened to the answers. They may learn. They may Fear these people less. They may even stop hating so much.

Will this happen? Probably not. But see, I believe -as a Recovering Christian/Spiritual Humanist (ordained, so zip it), I believe that we are all here for a reason. We each have gifts to share with the world around us. Two gifts, really. One is unique to each and every one of us.

The other is one we share: to learn.

  • Learn about the world around us.
  • Absorb knowledge.
  • Ask questions.
  • Travel, if you can.
  • Read books (if you can’t afford to buy them, there is this magical place called the Library).
  • Listen to community elders.
  • Appreciate nature.
  • Respect one another, despite our differences.
  • Learn. Just LEARN.

I sometimes -half jokingly- say that God (or deity of choice if you have one) not only has a warped sense of humor (aardvarks anyone?), but also is a scientist. A Research Scientist. Now, before you get your lacy little panties in a twist hear me out.

He sends us all down here, mixes us up, makes us all different. Different ways to believe, different skin/hair/eye colors, heights, weights, languages, religions, intelligence, disabilities, etc. You name it. We’re all unique. We all have some core similarities under all of those differences. I bleed the same color blood as all of you (even as a Dragon, shush).

The experiment is to see if we can make shit work. Seriously! Honestly, I think we’re failing horribly, but who knows… maybe we can get it all worked out somehow. Overcoming hate and violence is the hopeful goal of the experiment. It isn’t about how many people you convert to your circle. It’s about getting along and working side by side with others who are different. I could expand on that, but it’s getting late and the caffeine is wearing off. I hope you all get the basic idea. Communication, not bullets and hate. Not talking down to people, but treating all as equals. It makes a huge difference.

Can we make this experiment work? I hope so. It will take time, but He’s patient.

I just keep seeing news articles about white supremacists and those who sympathize with them being vocal about blacks, Muslims, refugees of all kinds, etc. Some are on the verge of violence toward them. Why? Why the anger and hate?

Our ancestors all came from “somewhere else” at some point in history. This country, the United States of America, was founded on freedom. We are, and always have been, a melting pot of cultures, religions, lifestyles… you name it. Not everyone came here willingly (slaves mostly), but we’re all here now. This country is not based on Christianity. It is based on the right to believe what you choose to believe. Have our ancestors been predominately white and Christian in some way? Yes. Mine are. Most of us came from somewhere else. Many not our generation, or even the one before it… but our forefathers all came from somewhere. My most recent “arrivals” in my lineage were one set of great-grandparents. They came over here in the early 1890’s. All my others were much earlier. My point is this: If you hate refugees so much, look in the mirror. You are descended from refugees and migrants yourselves. If you hate modern refugees so much, then why don’t you also hate yourself and your lineage?

Just because they’re different doesn’t mean they’re less than you or deserve your hate. They don’t. They came here to get away from violence, oppression, and war; likely a similar path to your ancestors.

(The only exceptions are Native Americans, and it’s possible even they migrated here from elsewhere, just a VERY long time ago, before us white folks showed up and screwed things up.)

So… now to a slightly different topic:


Systemic Problems with Law Enforcement

Someone earlier today made a comment on Facebook about the death of Korryn Gaines, another fatality at the hands of officers that could’ve been handled MUCH differently, whether she had a damn gun or not… well, MANY people made posts and comments, but this one is one that sticks with me: “Hairdressers are required to get at least 18 months of training, doctors and lawyers are required to go through at least 4 years of schooling and training on top of a Bachelor’s Degree to practice medicine or law. So why do police officers only get 6 months of academy training and are expected to know how to do their job properly upon graduation?” (This is roughly what they said. I don’t remember which of my friends said it.)
 
I shared an article a few weeks back (maybe less) on FB about how police in countries like Iceland and Sweden go through their police academy for at least two years or more, depending on the country. They get FULL training on ALL facets of policing the community. How to handle all kinds of situations. Using psychology, compassion, COMMUNICATION, etc. Not just how to point a damn gun at someone and basic rules and laws. (granted, I’m sure that’s a simplistic view of what training they do, but I know damn well they don’t get anything close to what the other countries do).
 
Take the case of the scene from last summer, I believe, when four Swedish officers were here in the US either on vacation or for some conference. They were traveling on the subway (NYC, I think) and some guy became belligerent, verging on violent. These four Swedish officers didn’t NEED to become involved, but because of their training, they not only got involved, but subdued the man -without harm- until the next station where NYC police could arrest him and remove him from the subway car.
 
THAT, my friends and anyone else paying attention, is policing. Not guns waving about and shooting someone who is simply drunk/upset/mentally ill/etc. We have militarized our police forces all over this country and this needs to stop. This country is not a war zone. Stop treating it as such. I believe our police academies need a massive overhaul. Extended training to learn how to communicate effectively, not just pull the gun out and assume shit. 
Assuming things gets people killed. Sometimes it’s the person being stopped, sometimes it’s the officer. Sometimes it’s an innocent bystander or a child. Ask questions, stop assuming the worst. Be prepared for it (as an officer, hand on gun but still in holster), but stop the profiling (everyone does it. yes, even civilians).
I don’t know what was going on with Korryn. The full factual story may never get told. Serving a bench warrant should’t involve a lot of officers. One, maybe a pair. Again, I don’t know all the details. Shooting to kill should be a last resort. Not the first.

I think that’s it for the night. Play nice, don’t even think of wielding that sword in my face. Al comments are monitored. And you do go well with ketchup.
~Dragon