On My Mind: March 2016

Monday Author: Susanne Skinner

My heart and my brain hurt. I look at and listen to what is going on around me and can’t make sense of it. Politics and terrorism are painful reminders that our world is hurting. These are things that have been on my mind.

On My Mind: My heart and my brain hurt.  I look at and listen to what is going on around me and can’t make sense of it.  Politics and terrorism are painful reminders that our world is hurting.  Brussels is my second home, having grown up there during my father’s assignment to SHAPE Belgium. This wonderful country and people did not deserve what happened and my heart goes out to them. This week nous sommes tous Belge—we are all Belgian.

American politics is center stage and there’s no getting around it—this will be an election that makes history. The question is what kind of history?  Political preferences and positioning aside we are in for a wild ride. Rhetoric does not always translate into action, but it is an indicator of what we can expect in a White House under a given president. The presidency is about words as much as it is about action. I am afraid for all of us.

No matter how the election ends, I believe voters are going to deliver their country’s leadership into the hands of questionable candidates. How are we going to explain that?  What will other countries say? Who will want to eat lunch with us?

Over the past two months I have listened to countless hours of below-the-belt campaigning and watched two real-life movies, The Big Short and Spotlight. I have looked behind the curtain of the political, financial and judicial infrastructure of America and it’s not pretty. I am disillusioned and disappointed. 

The world spins us around as we try to process everything that is going on.  This is the internet, reminding us that real life is always stranger than fiction.  There is no off switch but the world needs to find a way to reboot itself.

The Internet on My Mind

On My Mind: The world spins us around as we try to process everything that is going on.  This is the internet, reminding us that real life is always stranger than fiction.   There is no off switch but the world needs to find a way to reboot itself.Here’s what the internet has to say to us:

The Fat Person on the Plane:  I travel a lot, and I have been this person. Not the fat person; the one afraid the fat person will sit next to me. This article humbled me.  It’s the other perspective.

A Journalist’s Open Letter to Donald Trump:  Humans of New York photo-blogger Brandon Stanton takes on The Donald and asks Humans of America to pay attention.

Clinton and Trump = Trillary or Clump:  Political parties aside, let’s take a moment to appreciate this piece of Photoshop genius.

What do People Really Mean when they Type LOL?  And more importantly, why should we care?  Well, it took Kim Kardashian to help us understand it. If you can get past that and still want to read it, you’ll learn something.

Erin Andrews:  ESPN anchor Erin Andrews waited seven years for her day in court. What people need to know about this verdict and how it’s being misunderstood and misrepresented.

What if the World was 100 people?  There are 7.4 billion people in the world, but what if there were only 100?  This is what we look like. Let’s all try to be that person and work harder for change and equality.

I had a Black Dog; his Name was Depression:  A short YouTube video that looks at depression in a different way.

University of the People:  Affordable College? It’s real, accredited, and almost free. UoP is an on-line degree program whose mission is to offer affordable, quality, online, degree-granting educational programs to any qualified student. Costs are limited to a $50 application processing fee and $100 per exam. A bachelor’s degree can be completed in four years for $4000.  Boom. 

Read

On My Mind: My Beloved World:  a memoir by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. I listened to the audio book by Rita Moreno, who brought the story and Sonia to life.  Sonia’s success came with sacrifice and hard work.  Her brilliance, compassion and determination make this book worth reading.  My Beloved World:  A memoir by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. I listened to the audio book by Rita Moreno, who brought the story and Sonia to life. Sonia’s success came with sacrifice and hard work. Her brilliance, compassion and determination make this book worth reading. This is a first for a sitting Supreme Court Justice, but her story stops with her appointment to the bench. Understandable, but disappointing.  Rock on Sonia—show them how it’s done.

Watch 

Spotlight:   The true story of the investigative team of the Boston Globe that exposed the gargantuan cover up of sexual abuse by priests in the Catholic Church.  You can’t look away. Reporter Michael Rezendes (played by Mark Ruffalo) is still part of the Spotlight team and received a Pulitzer Prize for his work in exposing the scandal.

My issue with the movie is the admitted unnecessary and fictionalized dialog that portrays Jack Dunn (the current spokesperson for Boston College) as a BC High School alumnus who is party to the cover up. Unfair.

My issue with the story is how much remains unresolved and how many remain unpunished.  This movie is hard to watch. If you don’t know, you need to. 

Listen

Post Modern Jukebox:  Let’s end on a high note. Hit songs go into a time machine and get a retro cover treatment. These gifted musicians and singers can even make Justin Bieber sound good with the addition of some PMJ harmony. Happy music.

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