If I’d had children and had a girl, the first words I would have taught her would have been “fuck off” because we weren’t brought up ever to say that to anyone, were we? And it’s quite valuable to have the courage and the confidence to say, “No, fuck off, leave me alone, thank you very much.
After learning my flight was detained 4 hours,
I heard the announcement:
If anyone in the vicinity of gate 4-A understands any Arabic,
Please come to the gate immediately.
Well—one pauses these days. Gate 4-A was my own gate. I went there.
An older woman in full traditional Palestinian dress,
Just like my grandma wore, was crumpled to the floor, wailing loudly.
Help, said the flight service person. Talk to her. What is her
Problem? we told her the flight was going to be four hours late and she
I put my arm around her and spoke to her haltingly.
Shu dow-a, shu- biduck habibti, stani stani schway, min fadlick,
Sho bit se-wee?
The minute she heard any words she knew—however poorly used—
She stopped crying.
She thought our flight had been canceled entirely.
She needed to be in El Paso for some major medical treatment the
Following day. I said no, no, we’re fine, you’ll get there, just late,
Who is picking you up? Let’s call him and tell him.
We called her son and I spoke with him in English.
I told him I would stay with his mother till we got on the plane and
Would ride next to her—Southwest.
She talked to him. Then we called her other sons just for the fun of it.
Then we called my dad and he and she spoke for a while in Arabic and
Found out of course they had ten shared friends.
Then I thought just for the heck of it why not call some Palestinian
Poets I know and let them chat with her. This all took up about 2 hours.
She was laughing a lot by then. Telling about her life. Answering
She had pulled a sack of homemade mamool cookies—little powdered
Sugar crumbly mounds stuffed with dates and nuts—out of her bag—
And was offering them to all the women at the gate.
To my amazement, not a single woman declined one. It was like a
Sacrament. The traveler from Argentina, the traveler from California,
The lovely woman from Laredo—we were all covered with the same
Powdered sugar. And smiling. There are no better cookies.
And then the airline broke out the free beverages from huge coolers—
Non-alcoholic—and the two little girls for our flight, one African
American, one Mexican American—ran around serving us all apple juice
And lemonade and they were covered with powdered sugar too.
And I noticed my new best friend—by now we were holding hands—
Had a potted plant poking out of her bag, some medicinal thing,
With green furry leaves. Such an old country traveling tradition. Always
Carry a plant. Always stay rooted to somewhere.
And I looked around that gate of late and weary ones and thought,
This is the world I want to live in. The shared world.
Not a single person in this gate—once the crying of confusion stopped
—has seemed apprehensive about any other person.
They took the cookies. I wanted to hug all those other women too.
This can still happen anywhere.
Not everything is lost.
Twenty-three other explosive devices were found behind a trap door under the floor, Allsbrook said. He wouldn’t detail what kind of devices they were but said at least 12 of them contained lead shot, presumably to serve as shrapnel.
24 bombs found at NC man’s barricaded home
NBD, makes perfect sense this isn’t all over the news
Everyone knows that there’s no such thing in America as paranoid right-winger terrorism, certainly not right now, after decades of paranoid right-winger fear has been stoked and inflamed by talk radio and the Tea Party lunatics.
Yeah, there’s no way this could possibly be something like Eric Rudolph or anything like that. It’s best to do our patriotic duty and ignore this because Benghazi and Obamacare.
To catch you up on current events, the House Republicans are currently lying on the floor, holding their breath, and turning blue, in a last ditch effort to get someone to make the Affordable Care Act (A/K/A Obamacare) go away. What terrifies them is not the idea that the program will fail, but that, in fact, it will succeed. And the thought of working people, children, and the poor having health coverage makes them panicky for some reason.
To that end, the Tea Party noise machine has done everything it can to spread misinformation about the law, prevent it from being implemented, and block the government from providing basic information about how the Affordable Care Act works. This is a familiar tactic from other recent political battles: frantically cut the legs out from under the law at the legislative level, then scream that it obviously doesn’t work, and try to have it eliminated.
Here are the facts the hissy-fit crew don’t want you to know:
If you have insurance, you keep it. Nothing changes.
If you apply for insurance, and you have a preexisting condition, most insurers can no longer deny you coverage.
If you can’t afford insurance, the government will help you pay.
Your insurance coverage, whatever it is - whether it is supplied by your employer, or you go and get it yourself in the new health insurance marketplaces - will help pay for everything from preventative care, to doctor’s visits, to prescriptions. Because working people shouldn’t be one accident or illness away from bankruptcy. This is a simple matter of decency and social fairness. I am confused why anyone thinks otherwise.
Some people worry if they don’t get insurance, they will go to jail. This is a falsehood. However, in 2014, if you do not have health insurance, you have to get some, or pay a fee. And you say: but why do I need health insurance?? I’m not sick and I don’t need medical care! But if you get hit by a drunk driver, you will need care. Or if you slip on the ice. Or if you’re diagnosed with a malignant tumor. Everyone is in the health care market… ill health is an inevitable part of the human existence.
Don’t worry signing up will be hard! Help finding a plan is available.
The ACA means your insurer cannot drop you just because you get sick. It also means insurers cannot set arbitrary limits on how much they will spend on your care each year. Need more care? Get more money.
The ACA protects your choice of doctors, and makes sure your children can stay on your health plan until they’re 26. It guarantees your right to appeal if your insurer tries to dick you out of your fair coverage.
Guess what else? The money you’re spending on insurance? The insurance companies now face an 80/20 requirement, meaning that they have to spend 80% of what they make on health care, not on marketing, or administration, or other happy-crappy. Now they have to do less selling, more doing.
There’s a lot more to learn, if you want - all the facts are right here - but there is no reason to be afraid of the law. The goal is to protect families from the worst: the debilitating illness that wipes them out financially and closes the door to opportunity.
For creative people, the ACA is probably the best thing to happen in decades. I can’t tell you how many comic book creators are one sickness from having everything swept away. The creative class has been one of the great engines of the American economy, and in that way, the Republican attack on the Affordable Care Act is an attack on what America does best: invent and create.
Again: all the information you need, including how to sign up, is right here. Take a few minutes and get some facts for yourself. You won’t need more than a few minutes - this is simple, not hard, and a positive, not a negative.
By all means, reblog this post. It’s important for people to get good information. You can help by passing along the essential facts.