Kendrick Johnson

I have changed my cover photo and received a couple questions. So please forgive the “unpleasantness” of my explanation. That is fair warning.

I try to keep my FB page uplifting. I know hopelessness is a dark cloud that many keep away by shunning dark news. That is not my way. My belief is that we are all connected. Really. We are. So someone else’s pain is part of what is darkening my world. If I can AT LEAST acknowledge it, and support them, I make the world a little lighter and let in some new possibilities for them, however small. So I feel BETTER.

I have been visited by my share of hard to believe darkness and I bet you have too. If we are lucky, it strengthens us and bestows some wisdom. I can also say that the silver lining in negative experience is, hopefully: compassion and greater attempts at courage.

The young man’s name is Kendrick Johnson and his death is a mystery. At first, they tried to say he tripped fell into a rolled up gymnasium mat at school and suffocated!!!!!!!!!!!!! Honest. Okay.

When it did not fly, his parents were successful in getting him exhumed and it was found that all his organs (sensitive please stop reading at this point) from the top of his head to under his pelvis, every organ had been removed. This is within the range of what may happen in an autopsy. But typically, the organs are returned to the body and it is buried.

In poor Kendrick’s case, everything including his brain, on down, had been replaced with newspaper. Yes newspaper. You don’t need to remove every single organ in someone’s body to hide evidence if that is what you were going to say. Here:

WHY I CHANGE MY COVER PHOTO IS THAT RECENTLY, despite the continuing mystery, the Huffington Post published an “update” where they completely LEFT OUT ANYTHING ABOUT THE NEWSPAPER. Not even mentioned. In fact, they morphed the whole thing into a he said-she said false equivalency type deal. So I am sorry, but it has to be said. Someone(s) got to them.

It is obviously about money. This kid had no enemies. I am sorry to bring the following darkness to your world. But it lightens the load elsewhere for you to know, which ultimately benefits us all: There IS an underground network of organ stealing or “harvesting”.

I do not know what all happened. But if there is an effort to erase this newspaper aspect of the case from the news now, something is going on that affects more than the Johnson family! I want to do my part so I will have no regrets. Whatever it was and is, it needs to be brought to light for the sake of future Kendricks and their families, if nothing else.

We know from the Jerry Sandusky case that powerful people are protected. I personally don’t believe that we found out all their is to know about that situation that went on for how many years?! Sandusky just took the hit for others. Now here is another one. How widespread is this criminality? Who will they get to be the scapegoat when public outrage reaches a point that those “in charge” must take some action? What is really going on? Let’s be part of the solution and not the problem.

Anne Frank, Slavery, A Piece of God, the President, Choice

Anne Frank

Annelies Marie Frank was born 85 years ago today in Frankfurt, Germany. She would be one of the more than one million children who perished in the Holocaust, but her diary endures. On her birthday, learn more about Anne Frank, read some of her original writings, and help us pay tribute to her and all children who lost their lives during the Holocaust:
Photo: Anne Frank Stichting
Anne Frank would have been 85 today. We try to act like the most famous and horrific injustices and war crimes, such as the Holocaust and United States officially sanctioned African slave trade and culture are ANCIENT history.

In the case of the Holocaust, some survivors still exist. My father arrived here as a small boy, long before WW II, his parents escaping the Cossacks with the clothes on their backs. But I understand that much of my family that had found it’s way to Europe was lost to the Nazis.

Still, we have rampant memes and story lines, the incessant drumbeat, “all Jews come from money, stick together and are scheming to (or have) taken over the world.” Sadly, I know that these narratives are SO pervasive and convincing that odds are at least one person reading even my extremely progressive (“Hurry up, world, I got grandkids. It was supposed to be better by now!”) posts is actively struggling not to buy in.

Then some BORN into generations of American slavery passed away only recently and their 1st generation non-enslaved children and grandchildren still walk among us, suffering the effects of generations of systematically abused and abolished families and destroyed cultural heritage. The fruits of the efforts to find, restore, reclaim and rebuild are nothing short of stunning. But, still…

We all know the range of ways that we accept and face this or find ourselves being fed some flavor of the “that should have no effect on today, hey, X immigrant group were derided, discriminated against and denied employment too, we all came from somewhere”, whitewash.

In honor of little Anne Frank, who never got to do more in life, than write her hopes and insights (“I still believe people are really good at heart. “) into her diary, let’s resolve to speak out against corruption, torture, slavery and abuse, including of our Earth, still existing in today’s world instead of being part of an equally ongoing, unchanging it’s-not-so-bad, whitewash.

Our president is not a descendent of enslaved destroyed families. His mom had a fine start in life and he never knew his African academic father. He wrote an entire book about his efforts to piece together his paternal background and to understand the choices of this man.But still, his skin color is routinely pointed to as proof that “Everything is all better now. See?” As our President, he would be the first to look around and explain to you why that is not the case. We got work to do – not for the good of some of us, but for the good of all of us.

Still, we persist in dismissing our ANCIENT HISTORY. “How could THAT have happened?” “Oh it was long ago. That would never happen today.” Yes, it could and is. It’s always so complex. There are always so many factors. Money and power struggles are always involved.

Buddhism teaches the three poisons of avarice, anger and stupidity, from which all evil stems. All human beings have an inherent enlightened nature too, though – a piece of God or Spirit within, if you prefer. There is always a choice as to how our life force manifests moment to moment. Follow ingrained habits and tendencies? Or break free?

Today, I will try to love as if I honor and cherish the hopes and dreams of little Anne Frank. I am proud to live in a community where so many fight the good fight to support, restore, repair, build anew, where hope is very much alive and action is the name of the game.


Safety, Security, Happiness

Sometimes I get confused and think that strengthening a so-so safety net will FEEL better than generosity. I confuse the feeling of happiness with the feeling of becoming just a bit more secure.

I had no one to rely on in my birth family, and always had to work really hard with no safety net. So building financial security so I would not have to need with no one to help EQUALED happiness to me. When I found out I could make my own moves for myself I was proud that I worked my ass off.

This assumption about the ORIGIN of happiness, though, is encouraged by our culture. Even those of us that know that we are probably not going to achieve the stereotypical materially secure retirement this time around, feel it is IRRESPONSIBLE to choose generosity over trying to reinforce our position if we have the chance.

It’s a dog eat dog, right? We only have ourselves to blame, right? To counter childhood trauma, to fit in, to show society, we do our best not to need.

“This is what I am supposed to be doing, right? Okay, then. I can do that. I can BE that.” We all lose sight of the really big picture at points during our lives.

But if we are truly fortunate, we get to see a a choice, even with the help of a friend, and at a life crossing, we see we can decide between getting a tiny bit more secure or being generous in a meaningful way. We find out that the feeling of happiness we crave comes from giving to a worthy cause and not from another drop-in-the-bucket bank deposit.

LIFE IS SO GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so grateful to not live a life of reactivity from start to finish and be able to grow. Like plants, we grow towards the light.

Yoko Ono

Yoko Ono is an oft-misunderstood figure. In her 80’s, still performing, partnering, involved – she is a remarkable person and STILL way ahead of her time if you ask me.

Along with her performance art and her fearless outside -the- box activism, she has always had an engineer’s mind and that is what many fail to recognize.

There was a reason John Lennon worshipped her and that speaks well of him. She was doing her own thing and unaware of him when they met.

But all the world saw was “broke up the Beatles” (untrue), not pretty (ditto but who cares), “too outspoken” (really?).

Misogyny anyone?

Dear Friends
As all of us are devastated by the loss of so many lives of innocent children in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, I will be lighting IMAGINE PEACE TOWER on Thursday 7th August, hoping that such violence will stop immediately.
With deep sadness and love, yoko
Yoko Ono Lennon
1 August 2014

Women, Here’s a Time to Just Say Yes

Richard Branson quoteThis is my hope and wish for our next generation of women. All in the socialization.

A male friend once explained to me that this right here is the difference between men and women in the work force when faced with a step up.

Women feel dishonest if they take on something without being certain of all the steps, how it will unfold, if they can do it. They are not being good little girls. It’s scary and risky so it can’t be right.

Men know that, on the contrary, that is precisely the attitude required to ‘get somewhere’, ‘make yourself into something’, SUCCEED, discover and realize your potential.

All in the socialization. My wish for the current generation of young women and for all female children.

The Majority of Blind Men, the Elephant and Renisha McBride

Renisha McBride is the 19-year old woman who crashed her car on Nov, 2013, and was shot dead in the face while seeking help. After the accident, discombobulated (with a possible head injury), she found her way to Mr. Wafer’s house and knocked on the door in the wee hours. Speaking of narratives (pardon the pun), the Associated Press chose the following words to announce the success of the prosecution in the McBride murder case:

“Suburban homeowner convicted of second degree murder for killing woman who showed up drunk on porch.”

Okay, now just try to imagine a young white girl, all alone, coming from a night out, crashing, stumbling alone, a long way, finding a black neighborhood, finally – arriving on someone’s front step – disoriented and disheveled. A black man answers and ends the encounter by shooting her in the face.

With a tip of the hat (H/T) to and Robt. Jones, here are just a few of the reactions that parody the AP tweet.The hashtag generated was#apheadlines

U.S Ships refuse to get out of way of Japanese bombs causing a mess to form in Pearl Harbor #APHeadlines

Black people in Detroit participate in collective water fast to curve rising cost of living expenses #APHeadlines

Unfriendly Woman Causes Own Harassment by Not Responding to Stranger’s Compliment #APHeadlines

RT @AP: Overly Friendly New York City Police Hug Drug Dealing Man To Death #APHeadlines

Four little girls perish when gentlemen play with explosives in Birmingham building. #apheadlines


Too much of the time, as I walk through the world and what I see is described back to me by the media, and then I hear people defending these media portrayals, and I feel my face go awry like one of Picasso’s paintings with the eyes all on top of each other, nose askew. I’m all there, but upside down and jumbled. I was so thankful to read the article with the parody tweets. It set my head aright for a minute.The AP headline and the response to it makes the case better than I ever could as to why we need to insist on genuine respect and value for EVERYONE’S story lines. The scales tip just a little in the other direction and for some, the world is coming to an end, so sensitive are these folks to the slightest loss of comfort and standing, to not being the center, as God clearly intended. Mocking, degrading, dismissing this point as “political correctness” is falsehood of epic proportions. It’s the real “sin”. It prevents growth.

Truth is, most of these story lines STILL have not been expressed, spoken or written. There’s been no space for them to germinate, bubble up and display. No interest, really. Light-skinned folks have been sucking up all the air in the room

The white protagonist – always the hero, savior, villain, misunderstood, well-meaning, troubled, insane – but one thing for sure: ALWAYS the one of interest, always the one we are struggling to understand. Others? Cardboard cutouts, supporting characters at best, best friends, instigators – or triggers for the plot line of some poor victim, as in the case with the murder of a 19-yr old girl seeking help. Poor Mr. Wafer.

Could it be any more clear that we need EVERYONE’s help to see a more complete truth in this environment?

Comfortable Shoe Brigade

Look, I’ve ALWAYS been in the Comfortable Shoe Brigade. Mostly because of the River of Lisa Loopner Running Through It. I’ve stumbled while wearing 1/2 inch flats. More than once. In my late twenties. Publically.

I tried. At work at the engineering firm in my CADD incarnation, dressed for success in my skirt and 1-inch heels, I, Harpo-like, silently tripped over a staircase consisting of only 3 steps, flipping and landing on my side.

The arm that caught me raised me up, so that I, along with my astounded male colleagues, could observe one of my shoes, standing neatly, facing forward, on one of the steps where my foot ditched it. Once everyone knew I was okay, (they were good guys, after all) hysterical laughter broke the silence.

Another day, my boss smiled and silently pointed downwards at my two identical pumps. Identical except that one was blue and one was purple. My son had to be dropped off at camp during that work day. I was a new driver. Work was far. I got up real early. Shoe color was apparently not top priority. I spent the remainder of the day casually and artfully arranging my feet UNDER things.

My shoes must be devoted members of Team Claire. I need their support.