Remembering the Names


I wasn’t going to publish the names…there were so many. Then I decide that they deserved to be remembered, indeed honored. Each of then was young, at the beginning of this sojourn. Careers and school waiting for each of them. The name I won’t say is the perpetrators because I don’t want to encourage those unstable minds who commit crimes so history will remember them. I am sorry that their families and friends are experiencing this overwhelming grief and sorrow. Though a widow, I can only express a tiny bit of the hell you must be suffering. I am sorry.

 

 

For those on the fence about LGBT members of society, each of these people were in school or working. Let us remember the injured also. There is a large list of people who need your healing prayers. Their doctors need prayers for steady hands, wise decisions, and an angel on their shoulder. It will take the loving hearts of many people to get the injured up and about. They may face some discrimination. Pray that people will look at them and just see an injured human being. For their families and friends, I pray for you that you will have the strength to give them all the care they will need. May people remember that you will need care also. May you be able, in time, to forgive the shooter and the NRA.

 

May God bless and heal you.

May your lives be surrounded

with love, harmony and peace,We live in peace and harmony

May your hearts

 

strengthened and goodness come

to you for the remainder of you lives.

—The Rebel

 

 

We need harmony

Displaced by Violence, Columbian Women build their own City


Traditionally women have been seen as and forced to be second class citizens. All throughout written history, they have been expected to obey their husbands, accept any and all violence. They have been supposed to tolerate adultery. They have been made to feed their families with little or no help from their man. Marriage was a business arrangement to solidify relations between countries, as a mediation between warring clans or families. Marriage also used to require a bride price. Marry my daughter and I will give you 10 horses, 12 goats, and 6 bracelets of silver. We like to think times have changed but women continue to cook, clean, have babies and never speak about anything important.

Violence is happening around the world to men, women and children, but the women and children carry the brunt of the scars of the violence. Women may not look strong, but millions are strong. This is the story of such women and what they chose to do when violence drove them from their villages.

To the bravery and strength of every woman who surmounts her poverty, illiteracy, and homelessness and carves out for herself and her children a better life: I say you are heroines. Be proud of yourselves and children be proud of your Moms. Their strength keeps you all alive. Their bravery has shown the people of Colombia that women and children do matter. It shows that violence does not always win.

Displaced by violence, Colombian women build their own city

 

 

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The ERA Rally


 

 

My sister and I went to an ERA (Equal Rights Amendment) Rally, which is coming up again for a vote in Congress, soon.

 

Back in the 1970’s we tried, and failed, to get this important Amendment passed.  In the United States, no woman of any color or culture or religion is legally equal to any man of any many of any color, culture or religion.

 

This is the 21st Century, and it is time to remedy this. It will bring justice to women who have had to struggle without the support of the law on their side.

The below lyrics were written by Helen Reddy and Ray Burton, and I’ve included a video of the song as well.

 

The Equal Rights Amendment would not mean that women and men are “the same”.  It does not require shared toilets, or ignore the physical differences between the sexes.  It means equal protection and responsibility under the law.

 

Let’s make 2015 the year that every American Citizen is truly, legally equally for the first time in American History.  I think our forefathers would be please.

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Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

 

Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

 

 

Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

 

 

Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

Photograph and Copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

 

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I Am Woman

–Helen Reddy and Ray Burton

I am woman, hear me roar

In numbers too big to ignore

And I know too much to go back an’ pretend

‘Cause I’ve heard it all before

And I’ve been down there on the floor

No one’s ever gonna keep me down again

 

Oh yes, I am wise

But it’s wisdom born of pain

Yes, I’ve paid the price

But look how much I’ve gained

If I have to, I can do anything

I am strong

(Strong)

I am invincible

(Invincible)

I am woman

 

You can bend but never break me

‘Cause it only serves to make me

More determined to achieve my final goal

And I come back even stronger

Not a novice any longer

‘Cause you’ve deepened the conviction in my soul

 

Oh yes, I am wise

But it’s wisdom born of pain

Yes, I’ve paid the price

But look how much I’ve gained

If I have to, I can do anything

I am strong

(Strong)

I am invincible

(Invincible)

I am woman

 

I am woman watch me grow

See me standing toe to toe

As I spread my lovin’ arms across the land

But I’m still an embryo

With a long, long way to go

Until I make my brother understand

 

Oh yes, I am wise

But it’s wisdom born of pain

Yes, I’ve paid the price

But look how much I’ve gained

If I have to, I can face anything

I am strong

(Strong)

I am invincible

(Invincible)

I am woman

 

I am woman

I am invincible

I am strong

I am woman

I am invincible

I am strong

I am woman

 

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Yes, I was there. I remember the marches and the picketing. I remember men and some women calling us foul names and throwing things at us. I remember the feminist men who marched with us in solidarity. We marched for all women, for rich and poor, steel workers and housewives, college professors and college professors. We marched for ourselves and for our children and their children. Girls and boys, because inequality is unfair even to those it favors. It is taking a long time to make people understand that equality whether between the sexes or nationalities or religions or any other imaginary divider is necessary. We will not stop until we succeed. Let your mothers, grandmothers, sisters, girlfriends and wives be your legal equal. You have nothing to lose and the strength of millions to gain.

Namaste,

Barbara, the Idealisticrebel

The Journey of my Monday Morning Mind


 

Good morning, dear readers. I find myself thinking about those I miss. The people who are no longer there are the greatest loss of getting older. It is the anniversary of the passing of an old friend. John Lennon was in my dreams last night. I don’t know why and the plot isn’t clear, but it got me thinking of the rest of the Beatles.  That led me to George Harrison, and this interview George gave to VHI shows the authentic, real George Harrison. It, in my opinion, is a brilliant video.

 

 

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This is a quiet homage to Whitney Houston and a prayer for her daughter, Bobbi Christine, now in a medically-induced coma.  May she come out of this with new strength and determination, and a clear knowing of how much her mother loved her.

Wisdom from the Past


Most of you know I am a parent, with many beautiful grandchildren, none of whom I get to see enough.

When I do see them, I try to pass on a little wisdom, but my words are not always adequate, so sometimes, just sometimes, I rely on the wise words of others.

 

I thought I would share some of these with you today, in print and in song.

And the Two of Them Walked Together:
A Parent’s Advice to a Child

If

If you can keep your head when all about you

are losing theirs and blaming it on you;

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,

But make allowance for their doubting too;

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,

Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,

Or, being hated, don’t give  way to hating

And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

 

If you can dream — and not make dreams your master;

If you can think — and not make thoughts your aim;

If you can meet with triumph and disaster

And treat those to impostors just the same;

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken

Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,

And stoop and build ’em up with wornout tools;

 

If you can make one heap of all your winnings

And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and  start again at your beginnings

And never breathe a word about our loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

To serve your turn long after they are gone,

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

 

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,

Or walk with kings — nor lose the common touch;

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;

If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run —

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,

And — which is more — you’ll be a Man, my son!

–Rudyard Kipling

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What a Wonderful World


 

Life is a glorious adventure. We are given opportunities to learn lessons and to face challenges. We are given happy times to make joyful memories and we are given times of such amazing joy, we need to pinch ourselves to see if it is real.  Life is golden and bright white light and it is such a good thing to be alive.

 

Life is also like that coin in your pocket. The one you flip and choose heads or tails with. Life can be painful and terrifying, it can be a waking nightmare. Ask a veteran what they think. Life can break your heart into small pieces. You can hear it crack open in the silence of your life. Life can produce as much darkness as it can light. It can take away your ability to trust and it can give you the friend who will be by your side for a score of years or more. Life can bring you shock or happy reverie and smooth sailing or rough seas.

 

So, in reality, life is a combination of events which can enrich and strengthen us or break us and leave us like a wounded bird at the bottom of a tree. What makes the difference?  We do. We are responsible for the outcome. We are not responsible for what life drops in our laps, but we are responsible for what we choose to do with it

 

Some people have rough lives and have a struggle year after year. Some of these people will rise up out of the mire and pull themselves up. Some will reach up to pull another person down with them. Some face terrifying heartache and loneliness and will do all that is humanly possible to make everyone around them as miserable as they are. Some choose to fill their hearts with an acid that damages their broken hearts even more than they were and are guaranteed to make someone else’s heart hurt as much as their own heart does.

 

Some people allow themselves to be so damaged, and seek no treatment for their damaged bodies, hearts and souls. Others will choose to seek help. To seek medication if necessary. Some will turn from the light that is in their lives and will seek to blot out that light wherever it can be found. Science hasn’t figured out yet why two people can go through the same horrible experiences and yet one will become a serial killer and one will spend their life trying to make the world better. Doctors and scientists are trying alternative measures to help people completely heal so that the remainder of their years on this plane can be filled with more light and love than they would otherwise have. Some choose to sneak around in the dark and making others suffer for what has happened to them. It is the innocent that they hurt. Perpetuating the problem and the pain.

 

It doesn’t matter if you believe in God, or which God you believe in. It doesn’t matter if life bent you or broke you. Each day is your choice. What are you going to do to make this world a wonderful place for yourself and for others? Tomorrow morning is a chance for you to make a new choice or to reinforce the ones you have all ready made.

 

No one can make this choice for anyone else. Never allow anyone to make it for you, even if your life is on the line. Each day wake up knowing you are what you are and you will make life easier, smoother and more loving for someone else. Or you will wake up, angry, resentful, bitter and try to make someone else feel the same way you do. I choose the love, joy, compassion, kindness and peace. That is my decision every day no matter what happens.

 

 

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Turning Around and Finding Sixty or Seventy


One Woman, One World,  Regardless of Age

One Woman, One World,Regardless of Age

We were busy living our lives, falling in and out of love, going to concerts, learning about ourselves, dressing up for parties, studying new things such as womens’ issues, people coming into our lives and leaving, and making ethical decisions for our lives. So here we are. We stop one day and to our surprise we are in our sixties or seventies. Whoa. What happened? That young woman is still here but when you look  into a mirror you see someone else. You see the crone.

The Goddess based religions revere the Crone as the holder of the wisdom of life. The three stages of a woman’s life cycle include maiden, mother and crone. For me, I looked in the mirror one day and couldn’t find myself. Then some health issues occurred and I realized that I was 21 on the inside but this corporal body had aged while I wasn’t looking. Shocking! How did it happen?

I really floundered for a while, almost a year before I could realize that it was all a part of the cycle of life. What should I do with my life? The rest of my life. I decided I would not sit and wait for death. When it arrived, it arrived but I would do anything I could to continue making the world better. I would see what life still had in store for me.

Life does this to all of us; male or female. We must embrace ourselves and keep on living and loving and working for this One World that we have.

‘I speak without concern for the accusations
that I am too much or too little woman
that I am too Black or too white
or too much myself.”
———-Audre Lorde; poetess and feminist

Quote from Maya Angelou

Quote from Maya Angelou

Women who are “of an age” still have a lot to give to this world and to their countries. We may not have all the energy we used to, but we continue to be passionate about Mother Earth, peace, women’s issues. Don’t let anyone tell you to slow down. If your body is telling you to slow down, take care of yourself and find the things you can still do. Don’t give up, find another way.

“Women in business
Dress in man-style suits
And treat their secretaries
In a man-style way.

Women on campus
Wear “masculine” thoughts
And look to daddy for
Good grades.

Married women
Give their bodies away
And wear their husbands’
Wishes.

Religious women
Cover sinful bodies
And ask redemption from god
Not knowing
She is within them.

That’s why I’ll always love
The fat woman who dares to wear
A red miniskirt
Because she loves her woman’s body.
The smart woman who doesn’t go to college
And keeps possession of her mind.
The lover who remains a mistress
Because she knows the price of marrying.
The witch who walks naked
And demands to be safe.
The crazy woman who dyes her hair purple
Because anyone who doesn’t love purple
Is crazy.

Dear Goddess: I pray for the courage
To walk naked
At any age
To wear red and purple.
To be unladylike,
Inappropriate,
Scandalous and
Incorrect
To the very end.”
—–Gloria Steinam

No matter how old you are, walk your truth

No matter how old you are, walk your truth

All life has meaning, even if you don't see it.

All life has meaning, even if you don’t see it.