Well, it's been a really long time since I have had the ability to write with free will. Though obligations have hoarded my time, the heart has held my priorities close. I miss my liberties to speak freely and came really close this last election to having many of them stripped away from me.
Many things contributed to that… both spiritual, fiscally and politically… Being part of a union, there are uphill battles; participating in the ADP in a bloody red state is nothing less than a challenge; being employed by a company that is 60/40 blue/white collar (mining) has been a struggle to say the least… all of which has taken its toll on me for the past year.. but nothing compared to the persecution I faced as a woman during these elections.
Working in a 7,850 employee organization with 90% white men and 10% female I could have been found with my pins ON needles. My defense high, my guard wide and my firewall in overdrive! All I gotta say about this is… WHEWWWWW (exhale and wipe the sweat off my brow)…
After I went back to work full-time; a decision supported by the AFL-CIO officers, I found freedom to be me a little difficult.. but it was because of my husband's union job security treading on thin ice, that I made this choice… I had to for us.
During the campaigning season for unions, there were way too many “labor” issues internally that I yearned for the power to expose. However, understanding the detriment to sharing the weaknesses of a united front, I wasn't willing to give ammunition to the republican party or non-union believers at the time… because while many sniff snuff, and others cocaine… I can imagine the detonating sniffing gun powder that would go into an unbeliever whether anti-union OR GOP… and just wasn't ready to tear down what I could not rebuild. With that being said, this DemoGirl had a heart palpitation over democracy this go around and well… have been having brain blogging moments ever since.
The things I have wanted to say couldn't be printed fast enough. And though I laid low and back for so long, suppressing my voice of expression; it didn't make the stifled words go away… but only bold embossed them in my head… and thought to myself the past few days… I have GOT TO GET THIS OUT THERE! So, being a creature of habit, I did the next thing… my very first morning off of work in months, I grabbed my 5am cup of coffee, laptop and went to my place of serenity we all recognize as my back porch. Where I wrote my first article for LIA…in a very long time… (which is forthcoming) and well, here I am – AGAIN!
Being full of stuff to say, and only knowing one place I have the freedom to express it liberally…. I flipped and I flopped… Romney style; where to start, how to begin and if I should even do it with so many irons in my fire right now.
My Thursday thought was about Peeling off Labels and knowing the value of them. Just thinking about a well placed label and how it can either build an otherwise tarnished image or destroy a reputation. Labels can immediately classify a person or evoke a particular emotion. While there are many good uses for labels as a method of classifying or ranking, there are also self serving uses. So, I decided in a world of people renaming sin, overexposing lies and underreporting truths… I would redefine some labels of my own.
First being LABOR. Though DemoGirl meant to describe this democratic girl… this last election found me navigating toward democracy in general and stepping outside of the democratic realm and dipping my toes into other political perspectives. It didn't necessarily mean I was ready for treading into a more progressive or liberal pond, but more so about splashing around in a republican river… crashing waves of uneducated, misunderstood and wrongfully deceived people that were modifying scripture and misinterpreting its verbiage for their personal gain and justification.
Many who are good at heart, but given bad teachings about democracy and being labeled republican when they clearly are not… it is our job to be teaching them that want to learn, not hating them… well, at least not all of them! Because of my husband's employment situation and how he was horribly wronged to be let go a few years before his retirement by a vicious and vindictive employer in the name of NOT having liberties to exercise the democracy right to choose with his vote… he was let go unannounced and unforewarned. 27 years in this industry, it's all he's known and the decision to let him go fell on the aftermath of quite a few other union representatives forced to vote against their will or suffer the agony of repercussion.
Being a vocal and public voice of truth, it stifled me. How could I write about LABOR when the very wrong thing I saw happening in the country was happening in our own back yard, among the very brothers I stood and fought with all my life and within the walls of my very own home! These liberties, justices and freedoms I have picketed, striked against, wrote about and stood for tainted and poisoned my world. How did it all go so wrong? When did union organization become corporately greedy and sell out a brother for a buck?
Was I that naive to believe it would never happen to us? The answer is YES. My faith in LABOR had wavered. And until this morning, when I made a conscious effort to stand by my integrity and keep doing what is right… I decided to redefine
LABOR and what it means to write about in this blog. Those that once interpreted my blogging for labor as union organized; can modify their perception starting now… to me, going forward… labor will be about productive activity for the sake of economic gain, PERIOD. Bodies of persons engaged in such activity… with or without a green, credit or union card!
And finally, LEFT IN ALABAMA…. was assumed to mean liberal or radical views in politics.. unqualified and not quite as experienced in worldly affairs, I clearly did not fit that mold, however, a misconception on my part for not deep thinking what LEFT IN ALABAMA meant to me, personally and what I represent as a woman paying taxes in a state like this led by people like that! LEFT to me is stranded; a missed opportunity to go out of or away from the RED, GOP, MISGUIDED, MANIPULATING CONTROL of MISREPRESENTATION for the people of ALABAMA I have grown to love and support.
The country LEFT us to fend for ourselves on so many political levels and though I love my president… he didn't come here during his campaign to learn there were supporters here that believed in his candidacy… and though I voted for him, I REMAIN BEHIND (LEFT) in the red state of republicans that do not support him. And because he never got close enough to see the Blue speckled dots located throughout this state, he couldn't hear the cries.
Therefore, as time permits and as my priorities are reassessed…. I will find ways to de-muzzle the means by which some continue to silence my voice and REDEFINE through words, what matters most to THIS DEMOGIRL…. while trying hard to hold steadfast to the truths in my heart…