WE PAW Bloggers E-zine — Issue 03092022

Infographic created by editor/publisher

The “Write to Cope” issues are curated collections of current events writes. WE PAW members were asked to share any writing about their feelings and ideals, community situations, and/or daily diaries, etc.

Please share this reading and take care of yourselves. And, keep writing.

The Illusion of Safety, Sanity, Democracy, and Peace

Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

With Trump, I was fascinated with the things he could get away with — not releasing his taxes, giving relatives without experience or security clearance high profile positions, not divesting himself from his business interests, paying millions of tax dollars to his own hotels and golf courses as he traveled to his own properties with an entourage… the list is way too long to name them all — that those things were not, in fact, something enshrined in law.

It was apparently what we euphemistically call “presidential norms,” meaning previous presidents had collectively agreed on what constituted acceptable behavior. BUT, if you were Trump — and you had the balls to thumb your nose at those conventions — no one could stop you.

There could be hearings, investigations, lawsuits, security panels, impeachments, reports. But, when it was all framed as partisan political warfare, it was just a game. And, many Americans — myself included — were horrified to discover how easy it would be for an American President to become an American Dictator.

I have never seen the thread of Democracy stretched so thin and it was (and is) frightening.

Now, I see the same thing with Putin. The world — including America — has assured us all along that Russia wouldn’t do anything too crazy because other nuclear powers held them in check. Societal norms held them in check. Putin has even been allowed to sit at the Civilized Adults Table for years now. Sanctions held them in check.

That was a lie. A fragile fallacy like the sanctity of American Democracy. Nothing holds a nation ruled by an autocratic sociopath in check.

If Putin — like Trump — just has the balls to do what he wants, no one can stop him.

We mistakenly thought that nuclear equality was a checkmate. But, that’s only if everyone agrees they DON’T want to blow-up Planet Earth. That’s only if everyone wants to stay seated at the Civilized Adults Table.

If you are off the rails and care for none of these things — just as Trump doesn’t care about American Democracy and as Putin doesn’t care about the actual people of Russia — then our belief that safety and sanity is somehow protected is an illusion. That for me, has been permanently shattered.

Basically, the planet is nothing more than a ball of unwieldy chaos — how safe you are is mainly luck, what freedoms you enjoy exist on no more than a wing and a prayer, and there is no safety net for either the United States of America or the World. It’s always been an illusion. Now laid bare.

If you are able to donate to help people on the ground, impacted by this unjust war in Ukraine, I invite you to donate to the campaign organized by actor Mila Kunis (a Ukrainian and US citizen) and her husband, actor Ashton Kutcher. They have always been actively involved in charitable work and have vowed to work with partners that can get immediate supplies — food, water, and medicine — to those impacted as quickly as possible. You can donate here:

By Renea Dijab

Promulgate Democracy Against Authoritarianism

Authoritarianism is easier to wield than democracy.

It doesn’t require skill, nor does it require the effort involved in thinking and negotiation.

We in the democratic world know that authoritarians don’t care what we think or want.

The authoritarian ruler of Russia, Vladimir Putin, to get right on with it and name a name, just wants what he wants, and damn anyone who objects. To that end, he invaded Ukraine.

Vlad the Invader does not want any nation that abuts his to be a member nation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

It doesn’t matter to him what the Ukrainians want.

For our own internal security of our own democratic state, we must not accept that.

We must insist upon what is difficult: democracy.

Life in a democracy is better for the people in it, happier, freer, and independent, as our founding documents proclaim.

To maintain it, we must exercise eternal vigilance, even though that means being miserable every time a fight is necessary. We may yet end up at war over this.

Putin doesn’t want any democracies. He wants authoritarianism, and has no interest in negotiating about anything.

NATO nations should have accepted Ukraine’s application before this.

Now they offer its president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, transport out of there.

He said he needs weapons, not a ride.

Standing on the streets of Kiev in front of the presidential building with his top government members, Zelenskyy made a video on February 25, 2022, to say that they are all there, staying and fighting.

Zelenskyy, a lawyer and entertainer who has no ties to a political machine that could manipulate him, won’t run away. He is just the hero his country needs…and may just lose to a monster.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy intends to defend his country and its democracy.

Vlad the Invader could care less, and has ordered Russian mercenaries to murder Zelensky.

There is always at least one willing monster who will do what an authoritarian wants.

It’s appalling to realize someone may actually accept that job.

Here are the quotes I love to share about the threat posed by overpopulation to democracy:

I will continue to say this, whether people tire of it, or not. I said it in my novels, and I will do it again: Overpopulation leads to the consumption of more land, water, and other resources, which our finite planet cannot satisfy. Therefore, it simply won’t. This leads to the collapse of democracies and the infection of authoritarianism.

Bill Maher is right about how to interact with anyone who comes to their senses about Trump’s criminal mentality after the January 6th Insurrection: we should not propound the stupidity and obtuseness of their past mindset and voting behavior, but instead welcome them back to the fold of sanity and befriend them.

Grinding ex-fascists to the dust and rubbing their noses in defeat just breeds more anger, which festers into the next war. That’s what happened after World War I as the freikorps (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freikorps) and other veterans of the German army, vanquished and bitter, raged at the lack of resources and welcome home from a brutal, freezing, starvation experience until it could strike back in the Nazi regime and then wage World War II.

As for those who don’t come to their senses — and continue to deny the insurrection was crime perpetrated by enemies of democracy who include not only the insurrectionists but Donald J. Trump, who continues to admire Vlad the Invader Putin openly and unabashedly with malice and treason in his every word, and members of the U.S. Congress and Senate who heckled Joe Biden during his State of the Union address — we should investigate and prosecute them relentlessly.

The United States of America is a democratic nation, and we must not be distracted from that.

Nothing — not cancel culture nor cries to defund, rather than properly vet applicants to the police, nor whatever else that only divides the liberals of our nation into peripheral activities — can be allowed to distract us from that.

Now more than ever is the time to focus on beating back gerrymandering, corporation campaign donations, attacks on the right to abortion that will only keep women economically poor and too busy surviving to concentrate on our legal rights, and climate change.

The United States arranged for the Rome Statute that governs the International Criminal Court.

We signed that treaty. There is no legal way to unsign it, try as anyone might.

We signed it before the next administration took office. Our Senate ought to ratify it, so the world can see we mean what we say when we say war crimes are illegal.

Russia did not sign it — ever.

Putin is angry at the outcome of the Cold War, and decided to heat it back up.

Locking Russian oligarchs out of their hefty bank accounts, devaluing the ruble, and cheering on Ukrainians as they tell Russian invaders in every way they can to go fuck themselves (which they literally did to a gunboat over a loudspeaker) is the right thing to do.

I hope it won’t lead to Putin using nuclear weapons and destroying our planet’s ecosystems.

He wants territory and power, warm-water ports, and doesn’t care who he hurts to get them.

He will make the Russian people miserable to get them…and anyone who gets in his way.

Every day, I glumly expect to hear Zelenskyy has been assassinated.

No one wants World War III…do they?

I think Putin would be okay with that.

Damn him.

by Stephanie C. Fox: Author. Editor. Publisher. Calligrapher.

Sometimes Words Aren’t Enough #IWSG #WriteToCope #IStandWithUkraine

I’ve been practically glued to Twitter since February 24th where I have several accounts of journalists and Ukrainians in the country I’ve been following (heck, including Zelensky himself).

We’re, what, on Day seven and my nerves are fried!

I keep praying and hoping the Ukrainians can just hold on and perhaps Putin will decide to pull his troops out . But, of today, things are looking really uncertain.

I keep hoping and praying though!

Because of this, I’ve been so distracted I’m unable to write more than a few words each day.

I keep feeling my words aren’t enough., that I need to do something more or at least find a way to make my words profound and life changing. Is this how “activisms” work?

I’m so inspired by the people of Ukraine, of their heart and courage, that they are willing to risk it all to keep their freedom, their own country.

But I’m finding words are just not enough.

We have families living here, in North Dakota, who are from Ukraine.

In fact, one of my son’s best friends is Ukrainian. His family immigrated over from Kyiv in early 2000s.

He’s been glued to the news as well as keeping in constant touch with his friend — worrying about his friend who still has family members in Ukraine.

I personally know of individuals who either are in the process of enlisting or have gone overseas to fight for Ukraine’s International Legion.

Yeah, I’m a nervous wreck.

I want to do more.

I’m limited though by my disabilities (hearing and visually impaired) — not to mention I’m no spring chicken anymore (age-wise).

So, what can I do?

There may be a few options for the writer in me:

  • Write to my congressmen to do more for the Ukrainians
  • Find journals/zines/newspapers/journalists within Ukraine who I can help support
  • Write articles for my blog, Medium, and for various journals/zines outside of Ukraine calling for an end to this senseless violence, for peace, and for justice

Okay, there are things I can do as a writer. And words can make a difference.

Now, if you’d excuse me I have work to do!

What about you? What can you do to help support Ukraine?

Here is Ukraine’s President Zelensky’s Tweet 11am EST March 2nd:

If you would like to show your support for Ukraine, use these hashtags anywhere that used them:
#IfUkraineFallsSoShouldRussia
#BoycottCompaniesUsingRussianOil
#IStandWithUkraine

By Carrie Adams Golden

If you wish to contribute to this ezine, please join the group on Facebook. All writing creatives are welcome.

D. Denise Dianaty, Editor and Graphic Designer for the WE PAW Bloggers E-Zine. Administrator for the writers forum “WE PAW Bloggers” group and its sister group “Pandora’s Box of Horrors” on Facebook. In addition to being a self-published author and poet, artist, art-photographer, and administrator of the group, “WE PAW Bloggers,” Denise is a graphic designer with 25+ years experience, predominately in print media.

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An ezine for members of the FB group, https://www.facebook.com/groups/wepawblog, as well as being the place to curate featured writing prompt contributions.

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