Around About and Back Again

Covid, The Desert and Me

I’ve been away a bit. I’ve avoided Covid, living at the end of a dirt road, in the Sonoran Desert in Southern California. I’m 20 minutes from Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs and Palm Desert, but tucked away in a remote area. I call it the middle of nowhere and the center of everything. Moving and settling in since 2019 has taken a lot of my time and attention and I’ve been absent from maintaining this blog. I hope to be back to it.

Also, facebook has made sharing my experiences and connecting, more immediate and so at least that element of this blog has been replaced by the constancy of more interactive social media.

We’ve been rocking the gig economy, using a variety of platforms and opening our home and our business, DragonflyHill, to more and more people. But Covid has also brought with it a heightened degree of isolation and solitude. For example, we have 2 empty bedrooms in our house that we can’t rent out unless we find a roommate who is willing to be very socially isolated, as we are.

So, welcome back. Hope you’ll visit here from time to time and I hope to be adding more and more to this blog as the days go by.

If we’re not friends, you can follow me on facebook, but I don’t take on people, as friends if I don’t know you.

You can also follow my other pages, most notably: Radical DISability.

Photo of me, an Ashkenazi Jewish elder, with long greyish, brown hair, about 8 inches below my shoulders because I haven't had a haircut since before covid. (We're working on scheduling appointments soon, for outdoor hair cuts). I am sitting inside our palm tree bath, looking away from the camera. I have minimal make up and no retouching of the photograph, so it's a very natural image. I have hazelgreen eyes and pale skin. I am wearing earrings, and 2 necklaces and a blue gauze blouse.and a purple skirt and sandals. I am sitting inside a grove of palm trees on a bench in a very meditative space. We call it the tree bath and it's situation on my farm. ©2022 Emma Rosenthal and DragonflyHill Unimpressed Studios Self portrait done with a remote. See less

Autism Stigma and Fearmongering Greed

The Lack of science behind the Acetaminophen lawsuit

Image of a  yellow cat on a parking space awning. The awning i bent in the middle and the cat is sitting directly over the bend.  At first glance one might assume the cat bent the awning, but of course the cat does not weigh enough to have damaged the awning. 
The caption is
Correlation is not Causation
Correlation is not causation

My facebook feed lately is full of fear mongering around autism and tylenol. True or not, a class action suit could bring a nice settlement profit to lazy law offices that doesn’t want to take on real issues of DISability rights and inclusion, so they bases it’s latest effort by further stigmatizing autistic folx and people with cognitive nonconformities. The truth though is much more involved and the research behind these ads is shaky and questionable.

Newest sources posted to the top of the list.

Acetaminophen, ADHD, and Autism
https://theincidentaleconomist.com/wordpress/acetaminophen-adhd-and-autism/
“You’ve probably heard before that acetaminophen during pregnancy is associated with symptoms of ADHD and Autism in offspring. Well, we’ve got another study on that association. In today’s episode, we examine that study and revisit why we need to be cautious with observational data.”
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Don’t Feed the Clickbaiters – Tylenol Does Not Cause Autism
https://accountablescience.com/dont-feed-the-clickbaiters-tylenol-does-not-cause-autism/

“Managing the fever and inflammation associated with infection or injury is absolutely essential to a healthy pregnancy. Anyone worried about medication “causing” developmental disorders should be equally if not more concerned by the risk of stillbirth and life-altering birth defects which letting a fever progress “naturally” poses to a fetus. Alternatives like ibuprofen more than double the risk of suffering a miscarriage. This leaves few safe options for pregnant women. Stoking fears around Tylenol, the most widely used fever-mitigating drug by pregnant women, in order to push a story is not only an abuse of the journalistic platform, but a reckless risk to women and their unborn children.”
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Beware the Tylenol-Autism Freakout
https://www.thedailybeast.com/beware-the-tylenol-autism-freakout?ref=scroll

“For expecting women, a strong link between acetaminophen and autism would be cause for alarm. But despite a recent flurry of alarmist headlines, the evidence for such an association is still lacking.”
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Frida’s Bookshelf: Trauma and Abuse

I’ve written a bit about abuse and trauma, mostly in the form of facebook posts, waiting for an opportunity to put my ideas together more cohesively.

It’s summer, in the desert, during a pandemic where my most socially responsible behavior is to stay home.

“Those who attempt to describe the atrocities that they have witnessed also risk their own credibility. To speak publicly about one’s knowledge of atrocities is to invite the stigma that attaches to victims... Denial, repression and dissociation operate on a social, as well as an individual level.” ~ Judith Lewis Herman, Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence - From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror ~

~ Judith Lewis Herman, Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence – From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror” Graphic from https://www.facebook.com/traumaandco

Home.

Home.

Home.

Especially for women, home is more than just a place to sleep. It is often community, work, identity, investment. Why then do we insist, even if a breakup is necessary, that it is the victim who must leave? Why not support the victim in removing the perpetrator and protecting the victim? Why is the assumption that it is her move, not his?

(I use gendered pronouns because that is the essential paradigm of abuse, that gender would apply to any victim or perpetrator. It is also my frame of reference, my lived experience. If you need different pronouns, please feel free to substitute your own. )

Victims of domestic violence are told the perpetrator won’t and can’t change and the only recourse is for the victim to leave and it is the victim who must change. DSM diagnoses pathologize victims but not perpetrators. His violence is normal. It is her “willingness” to be a target that is considered sick; that the victim didn’t heed red flags or make better choices, didn’t see the patterns, that victims think of themselves as victims, play the victim (this is a game?), that survivors are superior to victims.

I use the term victim quite intentionally in my writing. There should be no shame in being a victim. It is BY DEFINITION, NOT A CHOICE!  Some victims don’t survive. Making a moral or spiritual distinction further maintains the focus on the victim and not the perpetrators.

BLAMING THE VICTIM FURTHER NORMALIZES AND ENABLES THE PERPETRATOR.

There are many reasons a victim may have to stay. There is often extreme push back on victims who do change. The most dangerous time for a victim of an abusive relationship is during or after she decides to leave. Victims who fight back or push back are often identified as problematic, disruptive, unpleasant or even violent. The prisons are full of victims who fought back.  Victims who kill their abusers routinely get longer prison terms and harsher verdicts than serial abusers who kill their victims.

Why is abuse always put on the abused to stop? Why is it the abused who should leave? (Often sent to spaces called shelters that are abusive, controlling environments that remove the agency of their clients and underpay and over work their staff).

Why is the removal of the victim the explicit solution?

Why do we insist that abusers won’t or can’t change? Why do we not instead, hold them accountable, in community? Why do we continue to present abuse as a personal problem and the personal choice of the victim instead of the systemic issue of power and oppression?

I am not saying we shouldn’t support the victim if they want to leave. I was addressing the mandate that the victim is the one who is told to leave, told it is their responsibility to leave and is told that to get help, sympathy or support, must leave.

Victims are rarely provided with sufficient resources to stay or leave, but the agency should be the victim’s.

There are even programs that refuse to help a victim if they don’t want to leave, especially if they don’t want to break up with the abuser.

There are few if any systems of support to protect the victim and hold the abuser accountable.

Also, the mandate to leave seems to only apply to heteronormative– in form if not in substance– domestic relationships.

People in abusive work situations are told to learn to work with difficult people. Monday morning blues are the generally accepted indicator of how pervasive and normal workplace abuse is.

Children with abusive parents are told that the family unit must be preserved and it is the parents who have to change.

Parents who have abusive children (yes, it happens) are told it’s all their fault (as if there aren’t other systems pressing on children: ex-partners, people in power, media, etc.)

My understanding of abuse and trauma has been empowered and informed by several important books and some articles, that I link to below.

One of the most important books on my shelf is Judith Herman’s Trauma and Recovery.  Herman describes how systemic trauma is, and for women, how abuse, at the earliest age is common and pervasive and that one traumatic experience often puts the victim in positions that are retraumatizing. These are more than just the victim’s patterns. These are social patterns imposed on marginalized people, often in a squirrel’s wheel that can be difficult to escape.

Patricia Evans provides the anatomy of abuse and what the abusers think.  Those books are essential especially for people dealing with gaslighting, moving goal posts, confabulations and false accusations

Red field with one black horizontal line and several vertical lines of different sizes out of the horizontal line. Red, Black and Blue by Emma Rosenthal

Red, Black and Blue by Emma Rosenthal




Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence–From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror Paperback – July 7, 2015

Cover image of the book Trauma And Recovery, by Judith Herman M.D.

https://amzn.to/3gV3HmE Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence–From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror Paperback – July 7, 2015

Also available free, in PDF:
https://www.pdfdrive.com/trauma-and-recovery-judith-herman-m-d-e17694190.html





The Verbally Abusive Relationship, Expanded Third Edition: How to recognize it and how to respond Paperback – January 18, 2010

by Patricia Evans  (Author)


https://amzn.to/3iS5L0t





HAPPY BIRTHDAY FRIDA

Self portrait of Frida Kahlo: The Broken Column

“I don’t think of Frida Kahlo as DISabled”

(yes, someone actually said that to me.)

“Have you actually LOOKED at her artwork?” I replied.

All this was in the context of an “anti-mall”, where lots of Frida Kahlo appropriated images would be sold at an event that wasn’t minimally accessible to —-Frida herself.

Happy birthday to a woman who gave us a visual language of dis-ability and social justice.

Color photo of Frida Kahlo with a body cast on. The plaster cast is painted with stars and flowers and a hammer and sicle. Frida is seated and is wearring a red and white blouse pulled up the cast is visible and is wearing a red and black skirt. Her hair is in an updo with red ribbons and she has lots of silver jewelry.

Denial of Care: DISability, age and the rationing and denial of care

Social Justice Links Related to Covid-19

This list or links was initially posted on facebook and facebook censored it!!
Your post goes against our Community Standards on spam No one else can see your post. We have these standards to prevent things like false advertising, fraud and security breaches. Emma Rosenthal published a note. March 14 at 7:31 AM Social Justice Links Related to Covid-19 I’m just getting started. Also, I haven’t read all of these. I just needed to put them all in one place and closes up some windows on my computer. I’m reading as fast as I can. Coronavirus Is the Perfect Disaster for ‘Disaster Capitalism’

Work in progress: New links added all the time. Newest links at the top of the page.

I’m just getting started. Also, I haven’t read all of these. I just needed to put them all in one place and closes up some windows on my computer. I’m reading as fast as I can.

For my other collection of resources and links related to Covid19:



Links:

 

 


 

Corona Virus Causes Global Outbreak of Racism

Work in progress. new links added. Most recently added links at top of page.




For my other collection of resources and links related to Covid19:




Links:
WORK IN PROGRESS. NEWER ARTICLES ADDED REGULARLY. MOST RECENTLY ADDED ARTICLES ARE AT THE TOP OF THE LIST:

 



 


  • “When Western health care experts say that this sort of lockdown won’t work, they basically mean it’s never been tried on this scale with this kind of uber-efficient government.” “Considering the underlying distrust, it’s hard for the government to say what many epidemiologists are saying: This outbreak is serious but not catastrophic. Because if the state leveled with the people, it would also have to admit that there is no need for this degree of social control. Fewer than 200 people were reported to have died as of Thursday evening, in a country of nearly 1.4 billion, and there is no indication that we are at the start of a Hollywood disaster-style movie.”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/30/opinion/coronavirus-china-epidemic.html


     

  • ‘They yelled Coronavirus’ – East Asian attack victim speaks of fear
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/16/they-yelled-coronavirus-first-british-attack-victim-east-asian-man


Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 5.36.04 AM

Corona Virus Causes Global Outbreak of Racism

 

I’m Done

By  Erin Branscome

FYI that I’m pretty much done with extended family and acquaintances who don’t believe that everyone should have access to healthcare.

To be clear, I’m not talking about people who disagree with aspects of the Affordable Care Act, or any other specific system. I’m not talking about people who agree that everyone should have access to healthcare, but who *disagree* with me on how best to accomplish that.

I’m talking about those people who believe that anyone who can’t afford health care should suffer and die. I’m talking about people who’s biggest complaint about “Obamacare” is that their premiums increased too much for them to be able to afford a new pool. I’m talking about people who believe as a matter of principle that you should be on your own when it comes to healthcare — if you can convince other people to help you out, great, but if you can’t do that, sorry; guess you’re gonna die a slow, painful, and utterly preventable death.

Because what every single one of you are saying, if you drill it down, is that if it were up to you, I would be DEAD.

This is not conjecture. This has been confirmed by multiple doctors. If I hadn’t been steps from an operating room when my intestines ruptured, I. Would. Be. DEAD. (I came very, *very* close to dying, regardless.) According to the ER doctor who admitted me that night, if I hadn’t had insurance — good insurance — I *wouldn’t* have been in the hospital, because at the time, they didn’t think I had anything that serious, and admitting me was a “better safe than sorry” thing. If I hadn’t had insurance, hadn’t had the ability to *afford* an optional night in the hospital, I would have pushed for discharge. The ONLY reason I didn’t go home that night, with what they thought was just an ulcer, is that I had insurance. I only had insurance because of the Affordable Care Act.

Without “Obamacare,” I WOULD HAVE DIED. Either alone and terrified in my bed, unable to cry out for help as the pain became excruciating and my lung collapsed — OR, were I able to crawl down the hall to my parents, I would’ve likely bled out in their arms while they tried to figure out what was going on, tried to get help, writhing in indescribable pain and suffocating to death on my own fluids, before mercifically losing consciousness and dying. Imagine the trauma to my parents and siblings.

And if you had your wish, that’s exactly what would’ve happened.

I’ve explained this, over and over. Again and again I strip naked for you, exposing my scars — flay my skin and rip it apart, letting you climb inside, *hoping* to find some scrap of compassion and always being disappointed. Humiliated, as you refuse to address the critical point and instead repeat talking points and lies, making it perfectly clear that nothing I said mattered. My pain — my *life* — doesn’t matter.

I’m done.

As so many people have said, I cannot teach you how to care about other people. I can’t explain to you *why* you should care; I can’t argue you into compassion. And I’m through trying.

But understand this: unless it’s preceded by a humble admission of guilt and a sincere apology, I NEVER want to hear “I love you” or “I’m praying for you,” or even “How are you doing?” ever again. I NEVER want to hear you offer your disingenuous concern or empty prayers to my parents, ever again. Your words are lies, designed to soothe your conscious and make yourself feel better, and I refuse to allow you that option, out of some misplaced sense of “civility.”

If it were up to you, I. WOULD. BE. DEAD. Period.

You’ve told me that you hate the ACA because of the non-essential items you were unable to purchase because of increased premiums. Even *assuming* that’s true — a big assumption — you’re *still* telling me that my LIFE means less to you than a new pool or a cross-country RV trip. And *I’m* the one lacking civility?

From now on, when you ask me how I’m doing, the answer will always be “none of your business.” When you tell me you love me, I’ll respond that I don’t believe you. And I sure as hell don’t want the meaningless, feel-good prayers you offer up to your false idols of American Nationalism, white supremacy, patriarchy, and capitalism. (And if I see or hear about similar comments to my parents, my response will be the same.)

I’m. Done.

Screaming From the Margins

Quote by Maya Angelou. Black and White headshot of Maya Angelou with her hand partially obscuring her face Text: When someone shows you who they are, believe them. - Maya Angelou

Photographer and graphic designer unknown. If this is your graphic, please let me know so I can give you proper attribution.

Be brave during these difficult and trying times. Speak from your heart and your lives. Speak for your lives and the lives of our sisters, our brothers, and all our nonbinary siblings, everyone screaming from the margins! Make space, hold space for those with less voice than your own, for those who are brought forth to speak truth to power because the times demand that of them.  Speak out against violence, especially the systemic violence of racism, sexism, ableism.

Darken your profile or don’t darken your profile. Follow the news or don’t follow the news. Tell your story or wait until you find the spaces that are right for disclosure. Do not let the abusers and their apologists tell you what to do. Instead remember that this is a time of reckoning and the violent have a choice to hide who they are (or admit who they are) and reevaluate their actions or show us their body politic in all its brutality. The brazenness with which many choose to defend rape culture is truly impressive but unwise. 

We, the marginalized, the victimized, the silenced, the once silenced; are stronger than ever, though it does not always feel this way. Our secrets, the daily attacks on our body, politics that were conducted behind closed doors or under capes and hoods, under cover of night, are now out in the open. The perpetrators are scared and they are outraged. Their lifetime of entitlements are crumbling around them and the rules have changed.

It amazes: the number of people willing to defend abusers during these fragile times, on the social media walls of friends who have either stated or implied that they are victims of abuse without any sensitivity to the impact their words have on others. It is as if they think the world is split into the people they know and actual victims. It is as if the entire #MeToo movement went right over their heads: this happens to every woman, every day. We carry this trauma in our bones and in our cells, in the passageways of synapse, in the corners of memory. Listen to us to understand the geography of trauma. Believe us. We have no reason NOT to tell the truth once we break the silence. 

All you rape apologists showing us who you are. Watch out, some day your past will come up and bite you in the ass. It’s still a free pass for abusers but our day will come and your antics will be saved, for the record. We all known the likes of Brett Kavanaugh, in high school, in college, in the work place, in our kitchens and bedrooms. We know the abuse we brought down when we disclosed, when we named names, when we dared to tell anyone. We know the silence they assume and count upon as we carry their shame. We remember how funny it was to them to get girls drunk and abuse us, or corner us, or push us against lockers.  You’re all playing rapist bingo with your blame game. But we see what you’re doing. So yeah, keep showing us exactly who you are. We’re keeping receipts. There will be a day of reckoning.

Sisters and all people of the margins: feel free to set clear guidelines for your own spaces, including your social media spaces. This is not a violation of anyone’s right to free speech. They have their own wall on which to spew their hate. They have their groups, sanctioned by the powerful owners of the platforms. 

Use their self exposure to determine who you need in your life. Thank them for showing you who they really are. Plan accordingly. 

#PTSD #CrossGenerationalTrauma #MMIW #BlackLivesMatter #SayHerName #NoBanNoWall #DisposableJewishWomen #FeminismIsChoice #ScreamingFromTheMargins  #IntersectionalAgendas

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