I was so young when The Youngbloods originally recorded (1966) and then released (1967) this song I do not remember it. However this song is part of my life’s soundtrack and I do remember it being popular as it was re-released by The Youngbloods again in 1969 and finally making it to #5 in the charts.
The tune has a longer history dating back to a performance of it in 1964 by The Kingston Trio and also having been recorded after that date by a number of artists including Jefferson Airplane and David Crosby. However it is this version by The Youngbloods that has remained the most popular and remembered.
I post it today as I find we are at another one of those turbulent times that reminds us that security is but an illusion and peace can sometimes seem elusive. For me what I have to remember is that hate cannot rid us of hate, only love can do that.
I must take a deep breath and take time to respond and not to react. I must strive to understand, accept, respect, have empathy, forgive, share, have patience, give and love. I must remember that truth always reveals itself, even if it takes longer than I want it to. I must strive to learn, to grow and to teach. I must smile, I must smile on you and even smile on those with whom I differ. I must remember that I am human and I have more in common with others than I sometimes realize, as they are human as well.
I mustn’t claim to have all the answers because I don’t. I must stand for righteousness without acting, feeling or being superior. I must remember that actions speak louder than words. I must be kind. I must be an example of what is good by being just that which is good. I mustn’t judge, nor throw stones. I must help those in need. I must love, love unconditionally.
The Youngbloods – Get Together – 1966
May peace be with you my brother, my sister, my friend.
Yesterday while driving the better half and I were discussing our experiences with discrimination as gay men, his experiences as a Latino and my experience as a white male. Being gay men we can empathize about discrimination to a point, but we agreed we can never fully understand what it is to be black.
What we can do is acknowledge that we don’t have the same plight, but we can stand for what is right. We can speak out against injustice. We can love, support and stand with our black brothers and sisters. We can believe in the power of Love.
Power of Love – Deee-Lite – 1990
Why Love? The answer us given to us by one if our greatest inspirations.
This is a disco tune that went past my teenage radar back during my youth and that great era of disco. It’s a tune I found later in life when reliving that bygone era. I fell in love with this tune.
Needless to say that the very first time I heard this tune the lyrics of the headline above stopped me in my tracks.
What the fuck? No Blacks, No Jews and No Gays?
Then I really listened to the message given through such a moving beat. A message that needs to be heard, must be heard.
Now all these years later I’m like “What the fuck?” This tune needs to be heard again? Does nothing ever fucking change?
Ok, ok , ok yes I’m on a soap box, but dammit people… We are not White, Black, Jew, Gay, Muslim, Mexican or PURPLE for that matter. We are human and we must care for each other, live together and care for our planet plus the creatures on it, or else we are fucked. Fucked.
Please click play, please feel the beat and move your tush. Please be kind to someone today that they may pass the kindness and understanding onto another. We have to start somewhere and dammit I start by saying I love you, care for you and wish to lift you higher.
There but for the grace of god, there go I – Machine – 1979
Being the 50th anniversary of Stonewall I search daily for a new video that resonates. Some days the videos just pop into my YouTube suggestions, some days I run into them on another blog and still other days I take the time to search. Today I searched and I learned, I found growth…growth in my understanding.
I’ll never be able to fully understand the plight of those born into the wrong body, but I can try to empathize through understanding from pieces of my own personal experiences. Even though I was born into an exterior male body that matches my inner gay male persona, I can understand this new term I learned today, Shapeshifting. While I didn’t have to act as a different sex, I did have to lie and act as if I was attracted to the opposite sex in order to hide who I really was. I can still catch myself shapeshifting as it was something engrained deeply in me early in my life.
I cannot claim to understand the complete experience of transgender. I can love, accept, embrace and support to the best of my own empathy and understanding.
Vulnerability = Courage
Harvey’s foray into politics followed closely after Stonewall yet it took him several tries to finally get elected into office. However as he did, he blazed a trail. Like those who took a stand the night of Stonewall and into the days that followed, Harvey took a stand and he persevered.
Neither the rioters nor Harvey knew where their new paths would lead, yet look where we are today. Let us make all of them proud and continue our march forward. America and the whole world can only be great if we keep moving forward toward better horizons of understanding, respect and equality. It’s up to us as there is much left to do.
Respect, understanding, empathy, character.
Life comes at you.
Don’t get me wrong, life is good…good overall, but damn it can come at you.
I’ve had so many wonderful things happen to me in the past month, and I’ve had some confusing and bewildering things happen as well. I sure haven’t posted much and I have some great things to post about (such as an in person meeting with not one but three dear blogger friends…hint…it was in Philly). Overwhelm describes my loss of words, organization and time to actually sit and post. I need to post for me and my mental health so I start here.
I need love today. I went in search of inspirational video to perhaps jar me into some sort of clarity. Below is the video that appeared when I clicked over to you tube. The message of love, of peace and of hope is exactly what I needed.
It’s here. It’s already here.
San Diego celebrates in July. After the other two large cities in our Golden State take the last two weekends in June, San Diego gives everyone a couple week break and then continues the celebrations.
I’ve been celebrating Pride since the first one I ever had the opportunity to attend. That particular pride was Seattle Pride 1990. I have been out of the closet since I was but a teenager however the place I lived had yet to have a pride celebration.
What Pride means to me is simply that we can be and are or authentic selves. In that we respect each other and support each other in living authentic lives. We celebrate and embrace diversity, acceptance, understanding, respect, affirmation, love and freedom.
Pride is, and should always be, a place of safety to simply just be. Just be. Be without judgment, discrimination, hatred and intolerance.
Be authentic. Be real.
one energy, one life, one light
live, love, respect, understand, express, grow, unite
Fearsome feels that at times we should contemplate words we know and dig a little deeper. Therefore an occasional entry from this day forward will be titled Today’s Word.
These entries will ask the reader to take a moment to contemplate and go deeper into the meanings of a word, or even a feeling, in each readers own life. Most often a term of everyday vocabulary. Fearsome feels that sometimes a deeper understanding of meaning may be as beneficial, or maybe even more so, than an expanded lexicon.
So without further delay, let’s get this party started!
Verklempt I am.
All of our journeys differ. All of our journeys deserve understanding. All of our journeys deserve respect.
Honor the journey. Honor yourself. Honor others.
It’s time to talk, discuss, find commonalities, evolve, move beyond, grow, understand, accept, change, embrace and mature.
Humanity is one race with many beautiful variations. Celebrate it.
First of all Fearsome asks that you please notice the change in the wording of our header above.
Fearsome will continue his quest of inner growth, increased knowledge and expansion of his understanding and empathy as before, however he must take a stand. When the rights of any one innocent person is tread upon by the injustice of unwarranted discrimination, our society is assaulted. When we stand by tacit as others are treated unfairly we will become just as guilty as the bullies themselves.
Let us review just what happens when a society allows injustice, keep in mind history can repeat itself.
The genocides of Armenia, Rwanda, Cambodia, Bosnia, Darfur just to name a few recent ones.
Colonial genocide against native Americans
And let us not forget a few of the current injust societies amoung us today such as North Korea, Venezuela and Syria.
Inequality is injustice. Ignorance and fear breed such nonsense.
Will all earthly societies ever become perfect and just? Most likely not.
Can all earthly societies try to move towards perfection and justice? Yes, yes we can always improve, learn, grow, respect, understand, encourage, support and care.
Take a stand. Spread knowledge. Teach understanding. Lead by example. Grow yourself. Show you care. Help others. Speak kindly. Give freely.
If you are so inclined to believe in equality and respect for all, please consider reading Joe Biden’s latest Washington Post Editorial.
Thank you Joe Biden for being a man of reason, integrity and respect. We are grateful that you are a part of our culture and our lives. Keep up the good work leading by example with true American values.
Living it gets busy. Living it is interesting. Living it is stressful. Living it is joyous. Living it is beauty. Living it is ugly. Living it is bliss. Living it is amazing. Living it is a gift. Living it is work. Living it is love. Living it is a protest. Living it shares. Living it takes. Living it gives. Living it is tiresome. Living it invigorates. Living it supports. Living it teaches. Living it disappoints. Living it excites. Living it is understanding. Living it is respect.
We can make life what we want. The only thing in life we can truly change is how we see things, how we react and how we choose to run with it.
I choose beauty. I choose love.
I am human. I am not perfect. I will never be perfect. I do not want to be perfect.
I, however, do want to be better. I am capable of improvement. I will do better.
These are choices. I choose to be honest with myself and those around me that I am not, nor will ever be, perfect. I choose to choose improvement. I choose to work toward betterment.
I have to accept that others are not perfect. I have to accept that others do not realize they are not perfect or that others may not choose to better themselves. I must realize that we are all human and thus flawed.
Where is this coming from? What am I actually contemplating here?
I am resolving an internal conflict about news I just encountered on this here internet thingy. It’s news about another of those accused and convicted child molesters. This one is not from Penn State but from television advertising of Subway sandwiches. Like my post about Jerry Sandusky, I was not there to actually witness Jared Fogle’s crimes and if his convictions are overturned I will post a retraction but since he is currently a convicted felon by the courts I will write a post about his actions.
Unlike Mr. Sandusky, Mr. Fogle’s is not appealing his conviction but allegedly defending himself in a civil lawsuit brought about by a victim seeking damages. I am actually relieved he isn’t appealing a conviction but am disturbed by the choice of defense in the civil suit. Choosing to blame the victims parents he alleges didn’t give the victim a proper home life thus leaving her wounded and available for his abuse? This somehow absolves him of monetary damage?
I am not familiar with the home life or the parents of the victim. I do not know the victim nor Mr. Fogle. He still abused her, she did not abuse him.
My old wounds of childhood abuse will always be with me. I realize that news like this will always lead me to revisit this part of my past in some way or another. I have to be grateful that I make better choices. I choose to take responsibility for my actions. In my quest for betterment of myself I must strive to not blame others for what was ultimately my decision and my action, even if others were less than perfect.