© copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert
My heart aches. Of course I mourn the passing of the thirty-two Virginia Polytechnic University students, as do we all throughout the globe. Nevertheless, I cannot forget how my heart hurts for the thirty-third victim, the one the media never seems to count among those killed, Seung-Hui Cho. On April 16, 2007 thirty-three lovable and fragile individuals passed.
We wake to work, dress for the job, drive to the office, factory, educational institution, the fields, or perchance, a restaurant. Perhaps, we travel to the site, go underground, or seek scaffolding. Some soar above the clouds to complete their designated task, or is the word "required" a more accurate term for what we do daily.
© copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert
More than a month ago, I began writing this treatise. The significance of stepparents and adopted parents was on my mind. Gerald R. Ford had passed and there was ample discussion of his heritage. Gerald Rudolff Ford Senior did not father his son in a biological sense. Still, the elder Ford was Daddy. Jerry Ford spoke of his father often and how significant he was in the his life. The elder Ford raised his son as any parent would, even though he was actually a stepparent. Ford, the President was not adopted until he in his twenties. At that age, an adoption was perhaps a gesture; after all Jerry Ford was legally an adult. Gerald R. Ford Junior wanted to honor his father or the man that, young Jerry truly felt was Daddy.
I too was fathered by a man not my biological match. For years, this gentle human choose to relate to me as if I was his own offspring. Legally, we had no connection. Let us call him "Adam," was my stepparent. Yet, this soft-spoken man was my Dad. Long before I could, with permission from the government, call him Daddy he nurtured my heart, mind, and spirit. I too am adopted; my adoption was long in coming. For years my biological father, perchance, we can title him Michael, refused to give his permission. In some states, possibly all, this is necessary. As I listened to President Ford's history, I thought of how it mirrored my own.
© Copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert
After marrying, my Mom tried diligently for four full years to give birth to a child. She went from specialist to specialist. Batteries of tests were run, and then, re-run. Although she and my father were both fertile and they were a couple that thoroughly enjoyed intercourse, they could not seem to produce a baby. My Mom, a scientist at heart, concluded that perhaps, she was not fecund when most women were. Perchance her cycle was different. Once considering that possibility was enough. From then on, she was able to plan her pregnancies. My Mom gave birth to three children, none born in the first three years.
Apparently, if a Washington State initiative passes, couples such as my parents would be required to have their marriage annulled. "Naturally," gay partnerships, would not, could not be considered. Obviously, such a union would not be classified as marriage material. The Religious Right, may have felt embolden after the state Supreme Court upheld a ban on same-sex marriage, however they did not propose a plan to go further. They did not restrict what constitutes marriage in a manner that might seem feasible to them. Numerous pious persons say the bible deems the purpose of matrimony is procreation. Thus, the Washington Defense of Marriage Alliance took action.
What is in a family surname, a first name, or a middle moniker? Today as I reflect on a current court case, I am reminded of my own history, my Mom's, and several stories told by former President Gerald R. Ford. Michael Buday is petitioning a federal judge for the right to take Diana Bijon's last name. The two recently married. Michael never felt connected to his own natural father. Mister Buday declares, "I had a rough childhood with my father," He continues, "We never really got along. Diana's father stepped up, gave me career advice. He's family." The term "family" is often heartfelt; it means more than any surname. At least it does to Michael Buday.
As the celebration continues and the cynicism mounts, a delivery was made to me. I thank William S. Burroughs for his Thanksgiving Prayer. I am grateful to bzbb of My Left Wing fame. S/he shared the text and resource with me.
After reading my Thanksgiving story of genocide, some decided that they knew I loathe the holiday; I do not. I do have disdain for humans that knowingly hurt other humans. I am disquieted when I realize that man, woman, or child intentionally commits crimes against nature.
When people speak against "evil" and then act in ways that I think they might deem "sinful" I am confused. While, I personally do not believe in either concept, I wonder why those that do think these constructs are valid behave in ways that could be defined as wicked.
People pretend to or believe they “know” their fellow workers, their family members, and their friends. Yet, more often than not, I observe that this is not necessarily true. I, we, she, or he only comprehends what is visible on the surface.
Few choose to ask of, address, or answer the deeper concerns that life delivers daily. I offer this narrative and request your reflections. We all have our own tale to tell. I invite you to share yours. Please trust that I care; your secrets are safe with me. I suspect that others will honor you as I choose to do. I believe we all relate to sorrow.