Four More Years


While last night’s Democratic Convention was inspiring, we still have a lot of work to do. Work to get folks registered and remind them to vote. As we women know, 92 years ago we fought long and hard to earn the vote. It is a responsibility as an American citizen to vote. If you don’t vote, don’t even begin to complain about anything.

There are many issues at stake during this election. Yes, we want four more years, but not everyone does. We do need more jobs, we need to realize that this president inherited the worst economy since the Great Depression. He saved the auto industry and a lot of that money has been paid back by Detroit.

Now every women can get health insurance. Being a woman is not a pre-existing condition. Life time caps are gone and children born with serious chronic diseases will be able to receive that treatment they so desperately need.

We must remember that the Republicans took the checks and balances off of Wall Street and drove us right off of the cliff. Thanks by the way, it was so fun for average American families.

There is a spirit of sexism and racism pervading our culture that is getting worse. Hate crimes and violence are on the rise. Guns are not an answer.
These next two months are going to be very critical for our country. Instead of reality tv, let’s participate in American reality. An election that will make it or break it for the middle class and poor, for women, and for those with health issues. This election will effect someone you know or perhaps even love.

 

Don’t sit on the couch and be angry, get up and out and make a difference

Our President Barak Obama

Life and the Tree


Costa Rican Rainforest, Cleveland Botanical Gardens.
Photo by Barbara Mattio

A while ago, I wrote a blog called “For She is the Tree of Life” and it was dedicated to my grandmothers and all of the grandmas, nanas, bubes and the gifts they gave us as we shared their wisdom while at play with them, or while finishing a chore or just talking together. Their stories were magical and took some of us to other countries, for some the stories were pictures of love and loss. Other stories showed us how much strength and courage we could find inside of ourselves if we looked for it. They made us feel important and unique and cherished.

Well, now we are the grandparents. We are the ones who have lived long enough to be wise crones. We have watched wars and famine. We have seen oppression and tyranny. It is our turn to share our visions, stories and to encouraged them to be deeply rooted in our Mother Earth.

Our grandchildren will face many storms and will know fear as well as joy. They will sob with grief and they will cheer with jubilation. We need to make sure all of them — I have nine — will know how to draw strength and wisdom and courage up from the earth when it is needed. They will need to know it is the love we share, the compassion we show, the forgiveness we give to others that really counts. Not which job we have, or where the kids go to school. As grandparents, we can teach them to care, to vote, to accept responsibility for their actions. We can help expose them to the events in life that will sculpt their own lives. We need to teach them to stop injustice, help to feed the poor, work to help the world’s refugees, for among them, there could be the next Mozart, or John Lennon, or Bob Marley or Monet. We need to teach them never to settle, to reach for the stars and grasp a hold on their favorite and never let go!

I celebrate my opportunity to be a tree of life for the little ones. I celebrate your opportunity whether it is now or later on. It is a gift.

Marblehead Lighthouse, Ohio, Photo by Barbara Mattio

Ninety-two Years Women have had the Vote


Ninety-two years ago, the Suffragettes won the right to vote. It was a very difficult fight. Men didn’t think we could think logically and rationally. Many didn’t think we could think about anything but the price of chopped sirloin or which tablecloth to put on  the table for Sunday dinner. Women who were not married and had no children were pitied and thought of as very different even abnormal.  Women didn’t even wear pants back then. Think about trying to accomplish a day in your life with a corset, bloomers, long sleeves and a floor length skirt on. The Suffragettes also gave us the right to throw the corsets away and breath and wear pants. Tennessee was the state that gave us enough votes to win the right to vote.

Now, it is 2012 and we have the right to vote to protect our existing rights. We need to vote for the candidate who will uphold our rights that we have now and who will work to give us legal equality next year. Think about the fact that ninety-two years after we have the vote, we still are not equal.

When you gain a right such as voting, you have a responsibility to use it. Women have a responsibility to vote this year. Our votes can make a huge difference in this election and shape the future for our daughters and granddaughters. Set the example for them to become knowledgeable about all of the issues and vote according to truth. Look into the “War on Women” and find out what the predominately male white Congress is trying to take from us. Obama  supports programs that benefit women.

I urge you to use the right the Suffragettes fought and gained for us and vote in 2012. Women need to be as outspoken about what happens in this country as the men are. We can make a difference.