Latest reader comments

  • Reply to: Tuesday Twitter roundup   1 day 30 min ago

    I'd like to say it gets better sweetie, but...

  • Reply to: Sunday News: From the Editorial pages   2 days 5 hours ago

    There is a lot of righteous anger out there right now among Liberals and Progressives, so much so that gender is emerging as a focal point of that anger. Not ideology or policy positions, but biology. Let me say upfront that I understand the frustration driving this; white males have controlled the lives of women for so long we are naturally suspect. Our deeper motives are suspect, and just speaking out in support of women is easily seen as exercising privilege. What I'm writing right now could be seen as that.

    But whether it originated from a position of privilege or not, I simply cannot be silent in the face of right-wing attacks on women. I won't be. Because that silence has, in my opinion, fertilized the ground that has spawned these attacks. People like Clarence Thomas are counting on such silence, as they slowly chip away at the rights of women. And minorities. And LGBTQ folks. And the list goes on.

    But it is incumbent on people like me (white males) to read the damn room. With that privilege comes responsibility. We need to understand that when people are hurting and angry, it's probably not the best time to praise our favorite sportsball team. As innocent as we may think that is, it feels (to many) like a smack in the face. I'm not speculating here; women are telling us this right now.

    I am speculating with this: I believe they feel like we're diverting the conversation. Maybe not intentionally? But that could be worse. That we could subconsciously divert the conversation they want to have into areas on which we would prefer to focus. And the more trivial it is, the more frustrating it is, for them.

    Be aware guys, and temper your observations accordingly. And if you catch yourself rationalizing the need to interject trivia here and there, be aware of that, too. Because part of you knows it's probably not appropriate, and you need to listen to that part.

  • Reply to: Livestream: Jan 6 Committee hearings   1 week 23 hours ago

    Or today, if you don't see this until tomorrow...Okay, that's even more confusing. There's a clock ticking down on the thing, just look at that.

  • Reply to: Tuesday Twitter roundup   1 week 23 hours ago

    It is important. And funny.

  • Reply to: Sunday News: From the Editorial pages   1 week 2 days ago

    Have I been a good father to my children? I'd like to think so, but that's probably my ego talking more than an objective analysis.

    I became a father when I was barely out of childhood myself (20). Still learning what it means to be a mature adult, what society expected of me and what I wanted to become. In many ways I was selfish in those early days, and probably not nearly as attentive to my family's needs as I should have been.

    Fatherhood was more of a burden, an added responsibility that was often at odds with what I wanted to do with my time. Make no mistake: I loved my children desperately, and wanted nothing but happiness and prosperity for them. I just didn't know how such things were achieved, I was still struggling with them myself. How could someone who is lost provide guidance and direction for others, especially small human beings with virtually no experience of their own?

    These thoughts are in the front of my mind now, but they were with me back then too, just carefully hidden so as not to betray my ineptitude to others.

    So my children and I grew up together, almost like siblings separated by several years. And we became Friends, which the Wise Parents told me was not only the wrong approach, but was actually dangerous. Children must be guided with a strong hand, lest they develop behaviors that society would deem counterproductive. That sounded right, but it didn't feel right. So I merely smiled and ignored such advice. And secretly felt sorry for both them and their children.

    My marriage, like so many others, failed when my children were very young. At this point, many of those "good" fathers begin to really fail their children. They let go of the burden, and refocus on their own desires. I could not do that. I missed my children. I no longer had any "best friends," because my children were my best friends. The Army kept me away from them for 14 months, and that nearly killed me. The day we were reunited is branded into my memory; I can still see the looks on their faces, and still taste the joy I felt of my not-yet 3 year-old daughter running into my arms and clinging to me for a couple hours, to make sure I didn't disappear again. At that moment I realized how terrified I had been that she wouldn't remember me.

    In the years since I have loved them fiercely, worried about them perpetually, and shared my innermost thoughts with them on a regular basis. And we are still growing up together.