So, it has been a few days. Mike is on a reading tear and not as available to help me with my blog. But we have something so newsworthy, that I was able to shake him loose from his latest book. He is reading up on mythology and spirituality, and who knows what else he will get into. He especially liked a book by Barbara Brown Taylor called “Holy Envy.” It is about learning to appreciate the best in other people’s religions. Of course, if you really want the inside scoop, ask a cat. As Eckhard Tolle said, “I have had many zen masters, all of them cats.”
The big news is we are getting a new kitten, a little fellow from Good Mews where Judy is a volunteer. They call him Stinkbug, but we are going to call him Magi; actually, Magi Stinkbug Gordon. The people will call him Magi, but the cats will probably call him Stinky. This is what he looks like:
Adorable, eh? It’s about time we got another black cat. He needs to be cleared by the Extreme Vet there before we can bring him home. Very exciting stuff, although the other 3 cats act like they couldn’t be less interested. They will perk up when Magi progresses from a potential cat to a real cat. I will keep you posted.
There remains a high level of polarization in our country, although you couldn’t really tell just by hanging out in Happy Meadows. It is as though a major segment of society has just awakened to the fact that black people continue to be mistreated in various and significant ways. And it is not just that there has been a new awareness, but that lots of people seem to care about it and want things to be set right. There will be significant push back by people wanting to preserve white privilege. Mike heard Brooke Gladstone on the radio the other day make the point that many of the poor white people in our country are trying to defend a white privilege that they don’t even get to benefit from. Interesting. As a black cat, just let me say that both from a study of history, and my personal experience, you don’t get treated the same. For me this is just a challenge, part of my life; but for others, 2-legged and 4- legged alike, things could improve. And it is not just black people. The treatment of Native Americans continues to be a national disgrace. As an example, Native Americans are disrespected in ways that other groups would not tolerate. If the Washington Redskins had been the Washington Kikes, the name would have been changed years ago. It does seem that the owner is going to finally yield to pressure that has never been there before. It will be interesting to see what happens.
So, the COVID-19 virus has not melted away in the hot weather like the Divider-in-Chief said it would. We have now surpassed 10 million cases and 500,000 deaths worldwide. Things are getting out of control, and if people don’t start masking and distancing, a lot more people are going to die. Get smart, y’all, the situation is nearing critical. A lot of people, Mike included, don’t like to be told what they can’t do or have to do, but if everyone just decided to be considerate of the common welfare we all would be safer. After all, a lot of people don’t like the idea of having to have driver’s licences, buy car insurance, wear seat belts, or pay taxes, but they do it anyway. We do have to concede that being a member of society confers certain obligations.
This would be a good time to celebrate the passage and the signing into law of the hate crimes bill in Georgia. It was passed as a bipartisan effort, and signed by a Republican Governor, although he never took a public stance on whether he was in favor of it or not. It included the LGTBQ community, which had been the roadblock for the past 16 years since the Georgia Supreme Court knocked down the hate crimes bill passed in 2000 as “unconstitutionally vague.” It’s about time, and ironically, would not have passed if not for the coronavirus pandemic. The Georgia legislature shut down along with the rest of the state in March, April, and May, during which time Armaud Aubury was murdered in Brunswick in what was an obvious targeting because he was black. Then George Floyd was murdered in Mike’s home town of Minneapolis, and suddenly Black Lives Matter mattered. So, when the legislature reconvened in June the hate crimes bill had strong bipartisan support that it did not have had in March, and Georgia no longer has the disgrace of being 1 or only 4 states in the country without such a statute. Who are the others, you ask? they are Arkansas, South Carolina, and Wyoming. Some people also count Indiana, whose statute some say is very weak.
And let’s not fail to wish a big happy birthday to the USA, still a great country and a great place to live. The bombs were bursting in air the other night as people were having a good time and letting off some steam. Some of my dog pals were terrified, which is unfortunate, but they are okay now.
So, before I leave, may I encourage everyone to mask up. If we don’t the coronavirus will go on a feeding frenzy that everyone will regret, liberals, conservatives, and don’t-give-a-craps alike. Please, please, please, and thank you. And there are advantages to wearing a mask. As Jim Galloway pointed out in his column in the AJC yesterday, while wearing a mask our good Georgia Baptists will be able to go into liquor stores unrecognized. And on a more serious note, in a stroke of unexpected (by me) genius, Georgia Governor Kemp warned that if everyone doesn’t mask up and stay that way, there will be no college football this fall. If that doesn’t stimulate behavior change nothing will. Until then don’t forget to love your neighbor, pray for world peace, and extend a helping hand wherever possible. We love you all, and hope your favorite team wins. So long from Happy Meadows!