It Is Time To Talk About California.

It Is Time To Talk About California.

California has been in the news for about two months now due to laws or problems within the state. We have stories via LA Times https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-los-angeles-homeless-camping-sidewalks-lawsuits-20190613-story.html which are documenting the crisis in the state and a story showing what their leaders have done to try to handle the issue. https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-pol-ca-california-budget-homeless-funding-20190612-story.html

On top of their homeless crisis, they are now adding free healthcare across to board to people without the necessary documentation. https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/tammy-bruce-californias-free-health-care-for-illegal-immigrants-an-unsustainable-financial-burden The idea is sweet, but the problem is that California is governing with their hearts and not with their minds.

Take adoption of example, many people would love to adopt children. However, if money problems prevent people from taking care of people within their family, does it make sense to adopt? Before you can help anyone you have to get your own home in order. I fear that we are going to see California burst if it doesn’t learn how to deal with the problems such as taking care of their citizens.

Homelessness is a real issue and one of the main issues when it comes to living in California. California has a high cost of living. I recall living there in the early 2000’s when gas prices were making life hell on earth for many of us. States should be able to take care of their citizens and nobody in America should feel like they are living in a third world country. According information written by the California State Auditor, California has the most homeless people in America. The entire report can be found here. https://www.auditor.ca.gov/pdfs/reports/2017-112.pdf

One would have to wonder how offering free healthcare to millions of people will impact their already fragile economic standing. I love the fact that California has given us some of the most vocal minds and voices in trying to help bring awareness to poverty and one of my favorites happens to be Duchess of Sussex. I am a super fan!

However, I fear that their current lack of knowledge in terms of handling their homeless crisis will grow in the near future. It would be one thing if these people were getting help, but they aren’t getting help. They are stuck in a situation that doesn’t seem to be getting any better. Some could even argue that the Three Strike Law was nothing more than a means of controlling the population, but I won’t go there.

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Dancing With Donald Trump

Dancing With Donald Trump

If you are anything like me, you are more than ready for 2020 to arrive and leave. One of the main reasons I can’t wait to see 2020 come and go is because we are in desperate need of new blood in Congress. We have two types of people occupying Congress right now. We have people unwilling to disturb the waters, and people who are jumping into the deep end of the pool, without knowing how to swim.

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Meanwhile, we have this issue with Speaker Of The House Pelosi and President Trump. If I didn’t know any better, I would swear that these two have a secret flirt affair going on. On one hand we have Democrats calling for the impeachment process to start. On the other hand,Speaker of the House Pelosi wants to see President Trump locked up.

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So, what am I missing? The last time I checked the president can’t be locked up without being impeached. If you aren’t going to start the process, repair your relationship and move on. The bickering and jabbing is starting to get old. Most of us just want to see results that benefit our country. We want to see a fair immigration system, better healthcare, a judicial system that works for all, and climate control.

We want to see an immigration system that does not destabilize countries that need each other. We also need to focus on making sure people have the right to healthcare and that they aren’t kicked off their plans due to preexisting illnesses. There is a mental health crisis in this country and nobody seems to want to talk about that. The truth is, treating mental illness is more expensive than treating asthma in some cases. I recall going to the doctor to schedule an exam for my daughter’s ADHD it was going to cost us over 300 with insurance. We aren’t even talking about the medication, we are talking about the mental health exam. Estimations show that we have at least 66 million people that are documented having some sort of mental illness problem occurring within 1 yr. https://www.nami.org/learn-more/mental-health-by-the-numbers

Those estimates are based on people that we track, there are millions more who are suffering from things and they will never go into a clinic. They will stay in the dark due to the fear of stigma attached to being mentally ill. Yet, we argue about gun control and forget about the very things that cause people to act out. If congress feels the need to proceed with the process of impeachment , then so be it. However, if there is nothing there, we need to move on and fix our issues as a country. We have seen enough dancing between Pelosi and Trump. If I want to be entertained, I will watch a dancing show.

Border Children Fate

Border Children Fate

As of lately we have been hearing rumors about children being rented and used a collateral in a ploy to gain access to America. By now most of us who have been following this story are also aware of the fact that children are being placed on birth control to make the journey to America. Millions of people are calling for the children to be united with their parents, however is that placing the children in harms way?

What we know for certain, is that most of the people traveling to the United States are men. In an earlier article that I posted, I gave links to direct sites in Guatemala breaking down the people and groups taking on the journey to America. If you read that article, you should recall that most of the people were young working men while another large group happened to be children. The third group was made of families traveling with their children.

In some cases mothers have been seen telling reporters that they have had to place their children on birth control due to the real threat of sexual assault. Keep in mind, these children weren’t placed on birth control prior to the journey which makes you question their level of safety. Now, with the latest findings we are learning that many of these child could have been exploited. The Hill reported that senators have been briefed on exploitation. https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/447288-dhs-official-warns-gop-senators-about-rented-babies-at-border

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Make no mistake renting children, using children as tickets to come over is a form of exploitation. ICE is designed to prevent and control exploitation of children and prevent further damage. However, with the enormous amount of people crossing the border, it is now a race to properly investigate who is a victim and who isn’t.

More than ever, the public needs to understand that our opinions do not surpass the need for safety in regards to these children. Our leaders need to start looking at this situation in a new light which means they need to see these children as potential victims instead of treating them like POWs. We must commit to fully understanding who the children are and if these children have been used as a means to gain entry into this country, we must protect them. The borders need to be secured until we understand what we are dealing with.

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Learning How To Stay Calm In Scary Situations

Learning How To Stay Calm In Scary Situations

I was looking at YouTube and I came across this video of a college student working outside of his dorm. He was collecting trash as part of a work study when a cop came up to him and started questioning him about his reasons for being there. The young man then pulls out the only ID he has which happens to be a student ID.

The cops questioned him about having identification with his address on it. As many of you know, school IDs do not have addresses on them, and depending on the student they might not have driver’s licenses. Well, as the student tries to explain that he doesn’t have anything else, the cops starts asking him about his birthday and all hell starts to break out.

This is the reason so many black children are killed in the line of fire. The student was rightfully upset, but he didn’t understand that he was risking his life by walking around not following directions. In my opinion, this cop tries to insinuate that this kid is becoming a threat to him. He was saying trigger words like threat, weapon and things such as that which would have warranted the use of a gun.

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After the video continues a man walks outside the building and confirms the identity of the student which prompts the policemen to ask the man to talk to the student due to the student being upset over the encounter. This situation was in bad need for conflict management from the start. It’s time for policemen to start taking the deescalation training seriously. I recall going to a conference once with two young officers sitting behind us and they laughed and goofed around nearly half of the training. If we want things to get better on the outside, we need to make sure we are teaching better on the inside.

Will The Nation Ever Trust President Trump?

Will The Nation Ever Trust President Trump?

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If Trump were to win in 2020 would the nation be able to support him as our leader? Watching President Trump interact with the Queen and her family this week made me think about how we see our nation as a whole. I would like to think that if he were to win the election fair and square that we would all be able to support him. However, I fear that there will never be a blanket of support due to his stance on certain issues.

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So, how does Trump differ on issues like immigration? President George W. Bush was friendly in terms of immigration. According to this article https://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2001/09/20010905-2.html we see that not only was President George W. Bush more open towards immigration, but he saw Mexico as an important ally. President George W. Bush went on to have more meetings with Vicente Fox like the one he had below. They often talked about Mexicans being willing to take on jobs that Americans weren’t willing to take. Perhaps, in some circumstances he was right.

 ” A Mexican proverb tells us that “Que tiene un buen vecino tiene un buen amigo” — “He who has a good neighbor has a good friend.”  Today, both our countries are committed to being good neighbors, and good friends. Friends deal in good faith, and disagree with respect.  Friends stick together, in good times and in bad.

The problems with our attitude in terms of immigration started when America went into a recession. Prior to that, I can’t ever recall having anyone talk negatively about immigration. I think we did what people normally do when they suffer, find a scapegoat. During times of chaos people often blame others for misfortune and sadly, the ones that took on the bulk of the blame came from the southern border. While drugs have been an issue for many years, we started to focus more heavily on those drugs and started playing the blame game in regards to jobs.

By the time Obama came into office we were dealing with millions of Americans out of work and an unknown number of illegal immigrants working in positions that once went to workers who now were standing in line at food banks. Not only were we looking at a shortage of jobs for American workers, but we were also looking at jobs that were pretty much tailored towards people who spoke Spanish which sadly placed American workers out of the running for positions. Obama was popular because of his stance on immigration. https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/2013/01/29/remarks-president-comprehensive-immigration-reform

We have to make sure that every business and every worker in America is playing by the same set of rules.  We have to bring this shadow economy into the light so that everybody is held accountable — businesses for who they hire, and immigrants for getting on the right side of the law.  That’s common sense.  And that’s why we need comprehensive immigration reform.  

Either way you look at it, both Obama and Trump have been trying to fix our immigration issue. The problem is that we are trying to fix a system that has been broken for too long. Immigration is now so bad that is it threatening the infrastructure of the countries like Honduras and Guatemala. We have to find balance for our future as well as theirs.

The Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Impact On Poor People

We live in a nation that offers great promise to those people who are willing to work hard. Ask any self made millionaire or billionaire and they will tell you, nothing short of hard work helped to enhance their lifestyle. My parents grew up working in the potato fields with their parents until they grew of age. They were able to save enough money working in those fields to buy the land we now call home.

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I never thought about the meaning of hard work growing up because it was just part of our life. My father would get off of his job and come home and farm the land. It was normal for me to help with picking greens, peas, and even snapping beans because it was our way of living. As an adult, I now understand that my parents were doing what any other hard working person was doing, they were trying to make sure we were able to survive.

As I would grow older, I would start to listen to music aimed at bringing awareness to poverty and different lifestyles. After I got married, I found out for the first time what it felt like to live on a budget. Budgets weren’t fun, but being hungry wasn’t either. I soon learned that college was our only way to securing a better life. We were determined to make it work for our children just as our parents were determined to make it work for us.

In both instances hard work was the only way to make a difference. After my husband got out of the Army, I started working for the shelter system. I was able to see women take as little as 30 percent of their incomes and buy condos for stability. It was enlightening and encouraging to see how people wanted to rise from the ashes of poverty and forge a new future.

While working in investigations I ran into many kinds of people. I ran into those who were trying to make a difference and those who had given up.

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I saw apartment complexes full of drugs, prostitution, abuse, and other criminal activity. I witnessed complexes who had seen mass removals of children that once frequented the area. Many of these people lived like they were in third world countries. The apartments were run down, pee soaked the sidewalks and the walls. People could be seen walking from complex to complex with beers in hand, all before noon. These people lived in free housing.

Sometimes, when we give free housing to those who can do better, we help to increase the likelihood of drug usage. I’m not telling you a stat, I am telling you the tale of two complexes. Many of the removals that came out of those areas dealt with families, living in free housing. I once had a manager come out and ask me if we could just bring a bus and round up all the kids! I looked at her and frowned, but after I got inside the area, I understood the reason. The drug problem had gotten so out of control that it had started to roll over into other properties.

We couldn’t even get policemen to come with us in those areas. I once had to enter an apartment with another investigator that was riddled with drugs and weapons. Two hours after I made it home, police officers called and asked if I made it out okay. I know Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez might be telling the world that she wants this wonderful idea of utopia to exist for all people, but the fact is, people need work. I’m sure Ms. Cortez went to college because she wanted to work. I find it a little hypocritical to tell others to be lazy when you know working is the key to a healthy future.

If you want to help people, you tell them how they can rise above their current situation. You give them hope by bringing in new programs to help assist with personal growth. We should be helping our neighborhoods to do better and we should be talking about the need for HIV tents that pop up like flowers. It’s time to get real about helping those who need help, or politely get out of the way of those of us who are trying to help people do better in life.

Using Disability As Cash Cow

Fair warning*** Some of you might not like the article of the day. However, it’s Friday, so you will get over it. When I first starting working in the social work field I was introduced to the disability cash cow.

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Before you get irate, I’m not talking about people needing help because they honestly need help. My mother worked most of her life, she got sick in her 50’s which resulted in her having to get disability. A few years after she got her disability, she died. I’m talking about people placing their children on disability as a means of income. There are some issues that will automatically give birth to the need of disability, however today we are talking about the ones that do not.

My first encounter with this situation started around 2012. I was at work and a lady entered my office with her three children. All of her children were under 7 and two of the three were diagnosed with disorders. In most cases, I haven’t heard of people giving children under five schizophrenia diagnosis. Yet, I am not a doctor, so maybe it happens. However, when I questioned the mom about letting her children attend school red flags started to show up.

She went on to talk about how she didn’t want them in a school and how the school wouldn’t be able to take care of them like she did. She was in a shelter and from what I could tell she had other people looking after her children most of the day. She then told me that she was getting around 1500 a month in disability and she was in the process of getting the youngest child placed on disability for their ADHD.

My daughter as many of you know suffers from ADHD/ADD and ODD. She was briefly diagnosed with having an intellectual disability until she was retested a couple of years ago. Around the time she received the intellectual disability diagnoses someone tried to talk me into putting my child on disability. I was told she would be able to get money because of that and her ADHD. I smiled and politely informed the person that I wasn’t placing my child on anything because I was going to help her learn how to control it.

Here’s the point, there are times when someone might need to get disability, but I would think long and hard about it before I sign any papers. Maybe talk to someone in legal. My daughter works and she plans on going to college to get a career. While her struggles have been real, our encouragement has been never ending. I always think back to the 19 yr I met years ago. She was bright, funny, and such a pleasure to be around. I would often make her read aloud in group when we went over coping skills. At first she was scared, but later she started to really shine.

I asked her why didn’t she think about going to college one afternoon. She then informed me that she had a low IQ which prevented her from being able to go to college. Apparently, her mother told her she was too slow and put her on disability with the help of professionals. Her mother was using her disability as a cash cow until she moved out of the house and then issues started because she wanted to work. We must always think about what’s good for our children and not what’s easiest for us.