Amber Alerts Go Mobile

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Like many California residents last night, I was caught off guard by an amber alert popping up on my cell phone. My first thought was that it was some kind of spam and my second thought was, when did I opt in for this? After opening the notification I was given the option to go to my settings and change/opt out of such alerts. After thinking for a few seconds about my sleeping toddler in the next room, I decided to keep these alerts on. What if it were my little boy? Or a friend or a family member? Wouldn’t I want anyone in the vicinity who could possibly spot perp to be aware? Amber alerts only help you have lots of eyes on the lookout.

After reading this article about how many were “irritated” and “annoyed” by the inconvenience of the alert, it didn’t set well with me. I understand that if I had been asleep and wakened by such an alert, it might have been jarring. I leave my phone off but put it on silent and turn off vibrate so that it doesn’t disturb me while I sleep. When I had an iPhone, I used the DND feature. If your sleep is so precious, why not try that? 

I guess my fear is that the first reaction by many is to be annoyed rather than concerned. A woman was possibly murdered and her children abducted. God forbid you lose a few minutes of sleep. 

I hope that those who are so inconvenienced by the tragedy of others do opt out of receiving these alerts. I feel like they aren’t any help to us as a society anyway. 

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Challenge Update, etc.

First let me apologize for my absence. With work overwhelming, the end of one terms of classes (straight As by the way), and the start of the other. Did I mention my husband is still in the hospital and I’m still flying solo doing the mommy thang? Yep, that’s been my 2013 so far.

As for my personal challenge to reduce my social media use…I have failed. Miserably. For the first few days I struggled. When I would open Facebook mindlessly, I would have to consciously remember to close it out. I think it did help, especially at work. But I also think I am the master at finding another distraction when another one is unavailable. Finally, I gave in. I don’t police myself anymore and I’m a little disappointed I gave up the challenge so easily. Maybe I needed to make my goal more manageable? IDK, seemed pretty straight-forward to me. Maybe I’m just weak. I think that is the more likely of the two. Such is life…

Two more days son turns one year old. This is a bitter sweet milestone for me. I can’t believe we have made it a year. It’s been magical and trying but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I look back at some many things starting with my pregnancy to having him and it makes me well up. And then I think of all the wonderful things to come. That makes me smile. This year will be especially tough because my husband won’t even be able our son’s  first birthday party because he is still in the hospital. It can’t be avoided so we’ll just have to  to do FaceTime, take video, and lots of pictures. 

In the meantime, this mama is just trying to keep all the balls I am juggling in the air. Can’t let anything drop!

Personal Challenge

Productivity is at the utmost of importance right now because I have so much on my plate. Especially at work. I have taken on additional duties and my time seems to be stretched so thin. This blog post, sadly, is me wasting time not doing dishes, cleaning the littler boxes, doing reading for my current set of classes, or getting an early jump on the next term that starts on Monday. But I feel I need to issue myself this challenge in a public forum. I need an official record of my promise to myself. In that way, it can become a promise to you too, the reader.  Continue reading

Why Does 2013 Hate Me?!

Well now, 2013, you’ve done a good job throwing everything but the kitchen sink at me, now haven’t you? I seem to remember that it was not but a few blog posts ago that I was so hopeful that you, 2013 would be a great year for me. Yet here we are, about one month in and I’ve had just about enough. But let’s start with the good. Continue reading

Thoughts on School Shootings

The school shooting in Newtown, CT at Sandy Hook Elementary School brought back extremely poignant memories for me.

As some of you may know, I was at Virginia Tech in April 2007 when 32 people, students and faculty, were senselessly murdered in a mass shooting on campus. There are so many things I remember vividly about that day. I remember the weather; cold, more windy than I had ever seen, snow flurries that seemed so late for that time of year. I remember not understanding the magnitude of what had happened until I got home from being evacuated from the campus. I remember being on lock down in my office with my co-workers and any students we found wandering the halls. I remember the phones not working; the cryptic, bare-minimum emails sent out by campus trying to keep us apprised of the situation. And mostly I remember the sadness of the days that followed. The candlelight vigil. The counseling sessions. The reporters randomly stopping you as you tried to go about your day on campus. Learning that a friend was a victim and dealing with the loss. Having the media descend on our small mountain town, making us almost feel trapped, with a giant spotlight on our campus….a spotlight on us as we tried to cope with the sudden, griping loss of so many from our already small community and the feeling of “how could this happen.” Continue reading

Off Topic – Religion and Race

As I sit here watching a documentary on Black Mormons, I wonder to myself two things:

1) Why would God create all people in his image but not make them equal?

2) Why would you want to be apart of a group/organization/society that doesn’t want or accept you?

The Mormon Church (Church of Latter Day Saints) tried to justify their racism in not allowing black men to serve in the priesthood because there was no divine intervention to tell them so. Those of African descent were considered lesser and unworthy of the priesthood, but according to church leaders, that was God’s way. How does that make sense? If God wanted people of different races to be lesser, he would have just made them that way, like animals. So, if you believe that skin color is his way of making “others” less important, you are sorely misguided. Don’t use your religion to shield your bigotry.

On the other side, why would you want to consort with people who view you as less important? What kind of comfort and love can you feel being apart of a church that teaches that you are evil because of your skin color?

Just a few things to ponder…

Off-Topic: Thoughts on Health Care

As many of your know, the Supreme Court today upheld the part of the Obama Administrations health care law that requires people to have health care coverage or face a tax. After reading the Yahoo! article regarding the ruling, and the subsequent comments, my only question is, how is this a problem? We are required to have car insurance in order to drive our cars. In many cases, in order to be approved for a mortgage, we are required to have home-owners insurance. How is this any different? If you choose not to have car insurance (and yes, you still have a choice) you face the litany of penalties that go along with that. You can be ticketed, have your license suspended, and if you are in an accident, you can face fines and jail time.  With all of the complaints recently about the sick, obese, and uninsured driving up the cost of health care for the rest of us – well, I’m sick and obese so I guess I mean the rest of you- why wouldn’t we want to make sure everyone is taken care of? As the article states, only 6% of the population would be affected by this legislation, because the rest of us are covered in some way. How is making so that insurance companies cannot deny anyone (including children) with pre-existing conditions bad? How is making it so that employers must offer their employees health coverage a bad thing? I know I’m damn near a socialist (which is the most evil word in the American vernacular these days) but even for those who aren’t, why are we so against affordable access to healthcare?