Archive | October, 2012

Throwing the Baby Out with the Bath Water

23 Oct

Sorry it’s been a couple weeks since I’ve written (oh like you care), but I was out of town tending to some very important business.  And it was while I was tending to that very important business that I thought of this topic.  Actually, I thought of it a few weeks ago, but this expedited it.

I went to visit my parents in Arizona because my Father is in poor health.  It’s ok, it’s what happens when you’re almost 90.  He was in the hospital a few weeks ago and I was talking to him on the phone, now mind you he was in pretty rough shape.  But I say to him, “Hi Daddy, how are ya’ doin’?” in my forced perkiness, he says he’s doing fine because he’s watching Penn State football on TV.

My parents both graduated from Pennsylvania State College (before it became a university), my Mother in 1948, my Father in 1949.  My Father first started at Penn State on a track scholarship in 1942.  He was there a year or two (can’t remember) then went off to serve in the Army in World War II.  He came back to Penn State after the war to finish his degree, that is when he met my Mother.  My Father married my Mother after my Mother graduated, because he didn’t want her to get away.  (Nice catch Dad)  And they spent my Father’s last year of school living in married student housing on campus.   That was pretty common after the war.  And in November of 1949, the first of seven Madigan children was born.

Jerry Sandusky wasn’t even born yet when my Father started college at Penn State.  Get where this is going?

I left NY and got to my parent’s house a week ago and there is a big Penn State blanket draping the couch, PSU glasses in the cupboard, and a gigantic box set of the history of Penn State football on the shelf underneath the TV.  My Mother stated she took the Penn State Alumni sticker off the car after the Jerry Sandusky disaster, because she said, “You know those people and their guns out here, some kook will probably shoot at me!”.  Yea, they get a little crazy out there in the wild west.  Both of my parents are absolutely disgusted by what Sandusky did, and are pissed as hell at the others who covered it up.  They don’t condone or deny what happened.  Believe me, they did some soul searching regarding their affiliation but decided they wouldn’t be forced to wear the Scarlet Letter.  (Now you know where I get it from)

Now back home my Father doesn’t have much interest in TV at this point, unless of course it’s college football.  Why am I telling you all of this?  Because a great number of people have made Penn State out to be a villain in light of recent events.  Now, now hear me out.  I think it’s absolutely disgusting, detesting, and deplorable what Jerry Sandusky did to those poor innocent boys.  I also think it’s horrendous for those other individuals who were in the know to do nothing about it or to hope it quietly went away.  BUT, I don’t think an entire university should be punished for that.  Nor should generations of students who went there before this happened.  Hell current students shouldn’t either.  Yes, punish Jerry, the coaches, Joe Paterno (they did and he’s gone), the Athletic Director, Board of Directors, whoever else who was proven in the know and did nothing.  But to punish the football players by taking away wins and barring bowl games is stupid and sad.  And for those of you judging at home it’s wrong for you to berate people on the street for sporting PSU gear, or trolling people on the internet who may have PSU pride.

Penn State has become a bad word,  like “liberal” or “black” to some.  Yes, I agree,  a strong example needs to be made.  People need to be made aware.  Like they say in New York City now, “If you see something, say something”.    Those who cover up child sexual abuse need to be punished too.  I know, I’m of an age where adults fondling kids ran rampant in sports programs, churches, and youth groups for decades and it was a taboo subject, no one spoke about it.  I have first hand knowledge of some abuse as an adult and you know my strong beliefs and outspokenness, you’d think I would have jumped up and started swinging.  Actually my first thought for a minute was I wanted to throw up and just pretend I never heard it.  It’s that difficult of a subject.  But then I collected myself and went to bat… with a bat.  No, not really, I just confronted it.  But I’m not saying that  excuses those who ignored it or covered it up.  In this day and age, enough light has been shed, there is no excuse to not talk about it.   I think men have a harder time dealing with the subject.  Women… our maternal instincts kick in, unless you’re one of the sickos that ignored your husband/boyfriend molesting your kids because it was better than being alone.  I digress…

Here’s my point, individuals affiliated with groups do bad shit all the time.  So every time should we vilify the whole group?  “Punish many for the actions of a few”? “One bad apple, don’t spoil the whole bunch, girl”?  (The Osmonds)  “Throw the baby out with the bathwater”?  That’s a favorite old Pennsylvania Dutch saying of my Mother.  I love it, it always rings true.  Anyway, so if we held tight to punishing or shunning the whole organization…  I’d have to leave the Catholic church because of all the sick sick priests who molested children and the higher ups that covered it up.  (Some people have left the church because of that, I choose not to).  Also, according to my beliefs and values, I’d have to leave the United States because we slaughtered Native Americans, held slaves, and killed people in wars.  (Hell the US still kills people and discriminates against gays, women, and races).  Then I’d have to leave the planet Earth because I am a global citizen and their are all kinds of horrific things going on like genocide, taking child brides (legitimizing pedophilia) discrimination against women and certain races or creeds.   Are you getting my drift here?

Penn State is a huge part of my parent’s life.  It is where their life together started.  It’s where our family started.  Hell the year after my parent’s left there, is when Joe Paterno started coaching as an assistant.  Penn State is a source of pride and good memories for my parents.  It is a great higher learning institution and is an affordable state system that allows many to get an education who might not otherwise.  And yes the football is legendary.  Over the years there has been a whole lot of corruption in college athletics.  We all know, it’s at every college with sports programs for decades across the nation.  Players get preferential treatment, grades get fixed, money gets exchanged, bad or criminal behavior is covered up.  It’s been going on for years.  I hate it.  But it’s the culture those men have created.  And yes I say MEN.  The good ole boy network supports it.  Anything for a win.  Anything to keep the TV and merchandise revenue coming.  Those men are to blame as well.  That culture needs to stop.

So should you then take Penn State pride away from my aging Father just because Jerry Sandusky is a depraved pervert?  As long as they clean house and the athletic department has performed it’s penance monetarily to victims, and whatever else… I won’t let you take away my parent’s joyful college years.


Is to Forgive Divine or Really Stupid?

11 Oct

So Rihanna tells Oprah that Chris Brown was her best friend and she still loves him.  We all know what he did to her the night before the Grammy’s in February 2009.  He beat on her face.  And she still loves him.

Then within the year after that incident, Karrueche Tran (some young model broad) starts dating Chris Brown.  After, ya’ know, he beat his last girlfriend’s face in.  They just recently broke up.

I did a lot of research and all sources stated that measuring recidivism (repeating an undesirable act) was difficult because not everyone is willing to come clean with that info.  So then I tried to just find statistics on convictions of repeat offenders, which also gave varied stats, anywhere from 1/3 to 2/3 of domestic violence convictions were repeat offenders.  I found a statistic from the UK that 42% were repeat offenders.

So it looks like you have around a 50-50 shot that a guy’s going to beat a woman up again.   And it looks like Rihanna and Chris might be canoodling again, by the looks of some Tweets and interactions.  Is she right or is she wrong?

What about the whole forgiveness thing?  If you are of the Christian persuasion, forgiveness is supposed to be a staple of your beliefs.

 Matthew 18:21-22

“Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.”

Other religions offer the same advice as well, forgiveness.  But forgiveness and going in for another try are two different things.  ‘Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice, shame on me.”

I read a few articles with men telling their stories about being rehabilitated wife beaters.  They got help for anger management and whatever other issues they had that caused them to think it was ok to hit a woman.  The wife stayed with them and they said it stopped.  Ok.  I’m glad you got help.

Just like people who have committed murders and never repeated the offense.  Just like thieves who never stole again.  I guess there could be some men who never hit a woman again.  According to statistics, sexual offenders and rapists, not to make light but it seems like those are like Lays potato chips, no man can have just one.  Also I was reading a study that said Pedophiles can’t be “cured”, they can only have their urges controlled.  Along the same principle as alcoholism.  So, just as you wouldn’t think it wise to invite a recovering alcoholic out to a bar… I wouldn’t date a recovering pedophile and bring him home to my kids.  Are you a gambling person, do you take those 50-50 odds on a woman batterer?

So what does one do?  I’m one to err on the side of caution.  Having been a victim of… no not “victim”, I was a witness to domestic violence.  Pushing, shoving, verbal abuse, grabbing, fists through walls, but I wasn’t going to wait around to see the fist in my face.  I left and never looked back.  Ever.  Not even for a moment.  And I look for the signs in others.  But each case is different.  Should people be calling Rihanna a stupid whore on Twitter because she’s cozy with him again?  That seems kind of mean.  Should the public be so willing to idolize Chris Brown again as a pop star?  It’s all relative.  My problem with Chris Brown is that he has never seemed remorseful and never really apologized and has had further displays of anger and violence since the incident.  What’s more troubling is  he tells the New York Post’s Page Six Magazine. “At the end of the day, if I walk around apologizing to everybody, I’m gonna look like a damn fool.”  DANGER WILL ROBINSON, DANGER!  You should be apologizing the rest of your life!  As much as it takes.  That’s what I measure him by.

I know what I would do.  Do we have a right to judge what others do?  Do you try desperately to potentially save a woman’s life by telling her not to go back?  Or do you just stand by and shake your head?  I don’t know.  Words of warning can only do so much, then it’s up to free will.  Be safe, friends.

R-E-J-E-C-T, Find Out What it Means to Me

5 Oct

Job searches and dating, what do they have in common?  If you’re like me, lots and lots of rejection!  haha, ok a little self deprecating humor there, but no really, lots of rejection.  But a “lot” is relative.

In this day and age searching for jobs involves loads and loads of rejection.  The number of job seekers is highly disproportionate to the amount of job openings.  Unless of course you want to be a telemarketer, there seems to be an endless supply of those jobs.

So which is worse?  Going out on a date say once every other week and having each of those dates let you know that “no further action is required”.  Which um, did not happen to me, I’ll let you know that my retention rate was pretty high (pre-relationship).  😉  Or sending out tens of resumes each week and never even getting a call for an interview on 98% of those?

I understand and can fully accept the rejections that are based on finding someone more suitable (either job or dating), or that it just didn’t click.  But it can get tough as it accumulates.

Then you factor in that that you can waste plenty of time on scams in either case .  In dating, there are plenty of men who are not available and just playing a game talking to you and getting your phone number.  They are either married, not wanting a relationship, just looking for sex, or weirdo pervs that just want to touch your feet or something.  Whatever the reason I get pissed off when somebody knowingly wastes my time in dating.  Even more so in job searches.

You wouldn’t believe (or maybe you do), the number of job posting scams out there.  I try to be sooooo careful.  I can usually spot a job that is not real.  It’s usually a scam with them either asking for you to send money to set up your “business” or they want you to launder money for them.  If I do happen to send a resume and carefully individually crafted cover letter, I can tell by their response and next order of action if it’s a scam.  Then I get really steamed.  I want to find them and punch them in the face, 1. For being a scumbag scamming thief, and 2. For wasting the time and energy of a hardworking job seeker like myself.  Maybe if they put their time, energy, and creativity into a legitimate job, they’d be very successful.

Then there is the  annoyance of listening to people with well meaning advice.  Everybody has a solution.  Instead of responding to someone saying “I’m looking for a job” with “Well have you looked on Craigslist?”, trying asking questions.  Of course the person has looked on Craigslist and every other f-in’ place!  Ask them, what are you looking for?  Where are you looking for job listings?  How long has it been?  Then maybe suggest something useful or just say I’ll let you know if I hear of something.  Don’t be a condescending douchebag who treats everyone like they’re an idiot because they can’t find a job.  We live in a complex world, some people do very specific things and it’s tough to find enough of those jobs to go around.

As an extension of that, you get the “well just get something, anything” or the people that say “hold out for a job that you deserve”.  Well then, someone is going to call me a freeloader if I stay on UI until I find the right job, and I’ll feel guilty.  Or I could get “just any job” for minimum wage that would put me further in a hole financially because I made more on UI.  But alas, “just getting any job” is not all that easy.  If you are a person with any sort of professional experience or education, “just any job” such as retail or housecleaning, will not hire you because you are obviously over qualified and they know as soon as you get a “real” job, you’ll be gone.  Been there.

In either case, dating or job hunting, it’s hard NOT to take things personally, especially if you’re suffering a large amount of rejection at one time.  And in either case, the more you put yourself out there, the more rejection you are apt to have.  *sigh*  “Keep the faith”.  Oh yea?  Screw you.  “It’s a numbers game”.  Oh yea?  Well I got yer numbers right here.  “You will  find a job eventually”.  Oh yea?  Tell that to my kids who would like to eat today.  “Love will find you when you least expect it”.  Oh yea?  Apparently I’ve found 18 cats that feel that way, thanks.

But… we go on.  There are days we don’t want to go on.  But we do.  It’s normal.  So we write a blog, rant on Facebook, rant to a friend, get drunk, sleep for 14 hours.  However you cope.  And then we go on.  *heavy sigh*

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