On 01.02.02, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Too late for surgery, I had chemotherapy, which failed. In May the chemotherapy was changed and I was soon in remission which was celebrated and welcome and lasted nine years - until October 2011. There was progression in 2011 so more treatment was indicated and I am now back in partial remission. But I'm not only a cancer patient - I also enjoy my family, walk my dogs and am learning to draw and paint. Life is good!

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Obama won and I'm still disappointed

For those of you who didn't know I can knit, you're mostly right.  Back in the day I used to knit sweaters, scarves and mittens, but not much else.

This project will be a color-block afghan, all 99 five-inch squares of it.  I'm about 20% done, so this will take a while, but I like the muted fall colors.

This afternoon I'm going to drop in on a church knitting group where I hope to get some ongoing help throughout the year.  I don't know how to stitch these squares together, or make a final edge around the entire project.  I have always wanted to learn how to knit socks and every now and then I think of how great it would be to crochet a traditional granny-square afghan like Steve's mom used to have.

I didn't dare start a knitting project before the election was over because the tension was so high I figured I'd put bubbles throughout all the flat places and rip the threads into pieces.  But we made it past that, thank heavens, and life can settle down with much less fear.

Seventy percent of Sonoma County supported President Obama for re-election, one reason I am so happy here.  Politics didn't used to be a factor in where I would choose to live, but it certainly matters to me now.  It was hard enough, during the campaign, to hear friends of mine say stupid things like questioning Barack's nationality or religion and my respect plummeted when I realized these folks had brains but were refusing to use them.

The truth is, the Republican Party is a racist enclave - and if you don't believe that, explain to me why only 2% of its membership is people of color.  By deciding to be a party of white men, the Republicans lost an election.  As close as that election was, it wouldn't have taken much reaching out to others to completely change the outcome.  I don't know what it would take to pry a Republican away from Fox "News" channel, which isn't even good entertainment these days - but it certainly isn't news.  It a channel based on fear of black men - or "others" in general - and perpetuates nonsense to people who don't read and refuse to think.  When you have a party actually believing that Russia is our worst enemy, that rape is "legitimate" and the results of which are endorsed by God, that the military needs to be reversed to the standings of 1916, that IDs need to be checked at the polling place when there is no history of fraud, that FEMA should be undone - need I say more?  What frightens me is that the vote was so close.  Has the 49% set their brains on the floor next to the Fox telly?

It's going to take me a long time to process the election of 2012.  Although the final outcome was favorable to me, it was too close, too hateful, too bigoted, too sleazy and nasty.  Before the campaigns began I knew that there were lots of folks in this country with whom I simply disagreed.  Now - and it hurts me to admit this - there are 49% of my countrymen that I don't even like or want to meet.  Never have I felt that way before.  It's one thing to have a different opinion;  it's another thing to foist hatred on the poor, those of different backgrounds and races and to take delight in assuring that that there will be two classes in this country - the rich and the poor - and to set up policy to make that happen.

I'm glad the weather has shifted to cold and rainy.  It's a good time to sit quietly and knit it all out.


  1. Oh Barbara, I really do know what you mean. Most of my family was for Romney. They've been hassling me over Obama care since the President got it through. My sister didn't believe Obama was born in the U. S. and when my husband tried to show her a copy of his birth certificate posted online she wouldn't look! We will see the fruits of this now that he has four more years to solidify all he has started and perhaps some of them will concede that they were wrong. I too have never seen such hatred and I hope it goes away soon.

    I am knitting an afghan now too but I am knitting each new strip onas I go so I don't have all that sewing up to do later. I am already dreading sewing in the yarn ends. Good luck.

  2. There are some in the Republican party that do all of the things you describe. And there are some in the Democratic party also...you can't judge a whole group on the actions of some. I am not racist, I don't believe Russia is our worst enemy, the ONE idiot who spoke about "legitimate" rape does not speak for me. It's your blog and you can say what you want, but I think your types of assumptions are what has our whole country not working together. I voted republican, not because I'm racist, but because I'm opposed to socialism and I believe that our country is heading that way. I also believe that most government run operations (FEMA, IRS and now Healthcare) are ripe with red tape and cost way more than they should due to the way the government runs things. I work for the government (municipal) and I see so much waste, politics, pride, stubborness and inability that it frustrates me all the time. Sorry for ranting on your blog. I hope I don't lose you as a friend either but I don't want to stand by and let you think the worst of me!

  3. Hi Patty - Thank you so much for your comments. Yes, I'm sure there are unnecessary costs, but my concern is for those who can't pay for some of the cruel turns life hands them. We need FEMA for natural catastrophes, we need health care, we need an educational system, we need roads and bridges. These are appropriate ways in which our government can help us build a community. I don't see it as socialism at all. I"m sure glad I was able to send my kids to public schools because I couldn't afford private schools. I can't build the street in front of my house. And, living with cancer, I live in terror that my insurer will drop me, which now they can't. I really believe there are appropriate ways for citizens to depend on government without creating dependency. Social Security - which I paid into - and Medicare, these are wonderful programs for which I am grateful.

  4. Good! Still friends! I've been coming to terms with what I believe and what seems to be a small majority of our country. I think we can all agree to disagree on some of the ways to bring about change. I have and always will respect who my president is and I pray for him to make wise decisions. But I usually still vote Republican because I want to see less government, not more. I can understand your concerns about health care, I've been fortunate that I have never had life threatening illness. I just wish there was a way to fix health care without creating beauracracy - I'm afraid I've always seen Gov't muck things up more than make them better. Let's pray that Obama will prove me wrong!


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