Peace, love and understanding; Is there no place for them today? They say we must fight to keep our freedom, but Lord knows there’s got to be a better way. — Edwin Starr, War

WWI Archive, Flickr Commons

I was watching a documentary on diets the other night when a European doctor quipped, “Americans love to have an enemy.” I was stunned. How insightful, and as I considered the statement, I concluded he was right!

No matter the issue, we Americans do love to have an enemy to identify, attack, and annihilate. Be it obesity, cancer, politics, foreign relations, politics, AIDS, or poverty, we describe it as “war”; “fighting” against something or other. War on cancer, war on poverty, culture wars, the fight against obesity, and it of course spills over into religions too.

On the positive side…

“It was not possible to insure the house, the swimming pool or the car against riot damage. There were riots, but these were outside the city, where people of another color were quartered.

These people were not allowed into the suburb except as reliable housemaids and gardeners, so there was nothing to fear, the husband told the wife. Yet she was afraid that some day such people might come up the street and tear off the plaque YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED and open the gates and stream in…” — Once Upon a Time, Nadine Gordimer

I keep hearing people say…

American Millennial parents (of which I am one) appear to me to not understand the nature of children.

On social media parenting groups, I constantly see questions about finding the “right” psychotherapist for a 4 year-old child with suspected bipolar disorder, or how to self-manage when you have a screaming, defiant 8 year-old with ODD (Obstinate Defiance Disorder). Parents, mostly moms, appear to really struggle with what are, for the overwhelming majority of kids, behavioral, and not mental health problems.

Perhaps the fantasy of what mother-child relationships are “supposed” to look like is to blame; dreamy images of laughing kids…

Electius believed himself above the gods.

Gladiator in the Capitol Building, Washington D.C., Copyright Loura Lawrence, 2017

Electius believed himself above the gods.

As ruler, he began to apply his “signature” to different pages of law books, religion, and history, having them evicted from the official state annals.

He wanted no precedents, no lessons, and no moral warnings, believing them to be frivolous.

But he angered the gods by so doing this, and Electius’s people began to suffer.

Disease spread, fish and crops failed, and long wars plagued the people and lands of Electius…

Years passed.

In the throws of death pangs, Electius asked to be taken to the palace steps…

A hike in the woods. Copyright Loura Lawrence

A couple weeks ago, the New York Times published a heartbreaking article, The Crisis in Youth Suicide, which showed recent stats concerning the unsettling rise in recent years of young people committing suicide.

The obvious question on everyone’s mind is, “what’s behind this?” While there are many ideas, opinions, and perspectives, I’ll add what I think may be a unique one for consideration, but it won’t be easy to hear or digest. Ready?

Certainly mental health needs more attention, but what is behind the rise in mental health disorders and illnesses? In large part, our culture has been headed full…

For the 5th time that month, I was back in the ER, struggling to breathe.

Lake Huron, Facing the Mackinac Bridge at Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. A mental refuge (running away) after the events detailed below.

I was having bad side effects of toxicity brought on by my chemo medication. Effects my oncologist insisted I could not be having, because I hadn’t been on the medication long enough.

So I was bounced like a bad hot potato between his office and my Primary Care Provider, who also wanted nothing to do with me (see: chronic pain patient liability). So back to the ER I went.

Feverish, in severe pain, exhausted, sweating, and feeling like I was drowning, I was left to…

It starts like a wanted ad: “Looking for crunchy mommas.” “Any Christian homeschooling dads out there?” “Recommendations for sci-fi/fantasy books featuring a transgender-lesbian teen hero.” This is the modern, “Google” way of seeking new friendships, churches, groups, music, movies, and even books.

Feeling left out

It is so micro-niched as to be borderline ridiculous, yet for all its innocence there is a sinister side. The motive is simple and sincere enough: searching for things we like, or for people who like similar things. Isn’t that, after all, the way to form lasting relationships — with people who like what we like and live…

In the wake of the last United States Presidential debate on Wednesday, the subject of abortion and a woman’s right to choose was one emotional issue. The popular topic hasn’t lost any followers or comments this week, as bloggers, journalists, and political pundits have taken the perennial debate online.

“Late term abortion” is an unfortunately misinforming term, that many people mistake for “3rd trimester abortions” only and “partial-birth abortion” only. Roughly 95% of all abortions happen in the 1st trimester. Late term abortions can be defined as either 2nd or 3rd trimester. …

Yellow journalism is a term that describes the sensationalist, money-generating “news” of what was supposed to be a by-gone era: 1895–1898. As we’ve seen in the last presidential election, yellow journalism hasn’t gone away, it’s just become digitized. Today we know it as “fake news” or “click-bait”, and its only purpose is to entice readers with outrageous headlines and content. If you take the bait and click, the website and its owners make money via ads.

Such news used to be relegated to grocery store check-out stands with tabloid headliners like, “Teacher Has Eyes in Back of Head!” (I remember…

It was a beautiful fall day today, but I felt upset as I rolled out of bed, into some decent clothes and the passenger seat of my car (I rarely drive anymore). I was headed to yet another doctor appointment. One I felt I did not need, one I did not want, and one I did not really have time for.

American medicine has become ridiculously over-specialized. I see three different doctors every MONTH, and that is freeing from the previous six I was required to see every 4 weeks just a few years ago, after a major back surgery…

Fuck. That.

Journalist, Photographer, Researcher, Speaker. Opinionated Moderate. Routing out abuse and propaganda.

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