Why I went to work on International Women’s Day

(Apparently this is a once-a-year kind of blog?)

I went to work today because I am blessed to be a woman with a full time job. I am blessed to work for an organization that values me as an employee and as a human being. And, in my heart of hearts, I don’t need to prove to anyone that I am necessary, important, valuable.

As a reminder, if you are reading this, you are necessary, important, and valuable.

So I didn’t stay home from work today and I didn’t “strike” from my workplace. And honestly, it felt kind of Donald Trump-y to sit today out. Yes, he is kind of the worst and he has said some terrible things about women. Full stop, there is no “buts”.

And I have things to do today and people to love and ways to grow and I’m not going to sit that out just because my president is a real jack wagon.

We need today to be about truth and love. Is it true that women around the world struggle to have their full dignity recognized? Yes. Are there ways that we can strive to live that out better? Yes!

“The greatest challenge of the day is: how to bring about a revolution of the heart, a revolution which has to start with each of us?” –Dorothy Day

Do we do that by not going to work/school? I don’t believe so. I firmly believe that we can change the world by loving the individuals in our lives, by reaching across the aisle (cliche alert) and desiring a deeper understanding of what it means to be a woman.

“The sense of futility is one of the greatest evils of the day…People say, ‘What can one person do? What is the sense of our small effort?’ They cannot see that we can only lay one brick at a time, take one step at a time; we can be responsible only for the one action of the present moment. But we can beg for an increase of love in our hearts that will vitalize and transform all our individual actions, and know that God will take them and multiply them, as Jesus multiplied the loaves and fishes.” — Dorothy Day

Also, no one gets to decide what your level of dignity is, that is inherent. No one can take that away from you. So do I hope that our President and the leaders of the world will take concrete steps to recognize that dignity? Yes, and I will continue to fight for that.

But even if they don’t, my dignity as a women remains. I don’t need politicians, the culture, the media, etc., to affirm me in that way.

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“What we would like to do is change the world–make it a little simpler for people to feed, clothe, and shelter themselves as God intended them to do. And, by fighting for better conditions, by crying out unceasingly for the rights of the workers, the poor, of the destitute–the rights of the worthy and the unworthy poor, in other words–we can, to a certain extent, change the world; we can work for the oasis, the little cell of joy and peace in a harried world. We can throw our pebble in the pond and be confident that its ever widening circle will reach around the world. We repeat, there is nothing we can do but love, and, dear God, please enlarge our hearts to love each other, to love our neighbor, to love our enemy as our friend.” –Dorothy Day




8 pros to Trump being President

I’m going to be honest with you all. I think we’ve been looking at this election year the wrong way. There are thousands of posts, articles, tweets, instagrams, etc. about how garbage it would (will????) be if (when????) Donald Trump becomes president.

It’s easy to jump on the bandwagon, especially when the animal incarnation of America tries to take a piece out of him.

But, let’s not focus on the negative! Let’s focus on the positive!

Here are 8 great things that will happen if/when Don becomes president:

1.The meme vacuum will be filled again.

In case you have been living under a rock (or in space for 340 days, Scott Kelly), Leonardo diCaprio won an Oscar thus rendering useless 67% of the memes on the internet (this is a made up, but probably accurate statistic). Take a moment and think of some of the scariest things Donald Trump has said and now imagine them with that classic meme font and his big ole mug. The universe craves balance and Trump will provide us with enough meme fodder to make memes great again.



2.Increase in legal citizens in the United States.

Trump has said some pretty atrocious things about Mexican immigrants (“They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people”). This has potentially spurred an increase of illegal immigrants to work towards becoming legal citizens.

Over all, naturalization applications increased by 11 percent in the 2015 fiscal year over the year before, and jumped 14 percent during the six months ending in January, according to federal figures. The pace is picking up by the week, advocates say, and they estimate applications could approach one million in 2016, about 200,000 more than the average in recent years

Apparently it’s pretty common for those numbers to jump up during an election year, but this year the pace has been quickened. I mean, nothing spurs people into action like the threat of deportation/blatant prejudice.

And if they don’t, Trump might deport them so…

3.Everyone loves a good dystopian novel

Who doesn’t love a good dystopian/end times story? Hunger Games, Divergent, Maze Runner? Or a zombie apocalypse thriller? Or basically any story with a bad guy where good ultimately triumphs?

I’m just saying, Trump as President might allow us to live our own dystopian adventure.

4.More walls

China has a Great Wall so, if we want to make America “great” again…looks like we’ll need a wall. Which is great, Trump would like to build one. Speaking of China…

5.We will understand the Chinese mind

“I understand the Chinese mind” —Donald Trump

6.We get to rebrand America

For centuries America has been a melting pot country (I know this because it’s one of the few things I remember from 3rd grade Social Studies). People came to this continent seeking religious freedom, seeking a new life. People have continued to do that up until today. Or up until Trump is sworn in and is allowed to make decisions.

Separately, Trump has said that he would establish a “deportation force” to deport the roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants in the country. In addition, Trump would end birthright citizenship, the automatic granting of U.S. citizenship to those born on U.S. soil. He would pause the issuing of all green cards and require employers first offer those jobs to American citizens. And he would cut off federal funding to so-called “sanctuary cities” which have an official policy protecting undocumented residents. [source]

People are all about rebranding! Google got a new font (screw you, serif), Dominos is making pizza that isn’t hot garbage anymore, and Uber changed the color of its app. See? Rebranding is everywhere.

Now is the time to rebrand America, no longer will we be the country who welcome “your tired, your poor”. No more shall we accept the “huddled masses yearning to breath free”. Some might say this is what makes America great; that people move here wanting a better life, wanting freedom and liberty, wanting to have a better chance to achieve their dreams.

Nah, we just want the people who are already here. Because if we let foreign immigrants in they will certainly attack us (because natural born citizens literally never do harm to our country). And rather than giving human beings the benefit of the doubt, hoping for the good, or risking our own comfort in order to allow other humans to have their basic needs met, let’s just turn our backs. America!

7.Women get set back like, 50 years

Women love a good fight, so let’s elect a guy who said Heidi Klum was “no longer a 10”, that Hilary Clinton can’t “satisfy her husband…[or] America”, or when Megyn Kelly did her job as mediator for a debate, Trump responded that there was “blood coming out of her wherever“.

Think of the precedent our Commander and Chief will be setting.

8.The next generation will actually learn about the electoral college in school

To make up for our mistakes, granted, but still a win.

Anyway, this is just a glimpse of the future that we might all be living in.

So what I’m really saying is, please be informed and please vote.

Also this piece is satire, Trump is not a good candidate.

How to register, read about the candidates and their beliefs, and why voting matters.



This squatter writes

Have you ever read about “squatter’s rights”?

For awhile, I used to dibs a seat, or a spot on the couch by yelling “squatter’s rights!”. And from what I’ve learned by using Google, the actual definition is rather similar.

It basically means, and I have zero law experience so don’t use this quote in a court of law, that if you inhabit something long enough a squatter could legally own said something. It’s also called “adverse possession” but that’s not what I named my blog so we aren’t talking about that.

So why title a blog “A squatter writes”? Well, partly because it’s a little punny. But mostly because I’ve always wanted to be a writer. The mythical nature of having that title continues to elude me; when are you a bona fide writer?

After you get published? How published is published? Do you have to live off of your earnings? Does it have to be your full time gig? Do you have to be old?? The only writers I know are famous, so do I have to be famous?

These questions and their subsequent answers have plagued my mind for years. And while my mind has been busy turning these questions over, I’ve wrote very little. Like, so little.

So I don’t have answers to those questions but I do know that if I want to be a writer, I have to write.

This blog is me acting in full liberty of my squatter’s rights. If I stay here long enough, and write enough, then I will be a writer. I’ve decided it.