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Old September 8th, 2017, 07:32 AM   #1
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A Candid Letter to My Evangelical Parents

A Candid Letter to My Evangelical Parents, After Trump.

Free the Angel, 30"x48" oil on paper by Julie Ruth

Sit down for a moment. I have a story to tell you.

A little girl grew up among family who loved her fiercely — she could feel that from day one. She was lucky.

A sister, then a brother, joined her. She loved her aunts, uncles, grandmas, grannies, grandpas and cousins. She lived to spend summer days outside with her cats. Her favorite place in the world was the turquoise trailer in Apopka, Florida, where Grandma Thelma and Grandpa Tarz awaited with open arms each winter. She lived in a bubble of love, safe from the outside world.

But as she grew, the bubble she was ensconced in started worrying her and became constrictive. By the age of five, she began to feel trapped. Thankfully, she learned to read. This is what ultimately helped her save herself, years later, when everything was counting on it.

Always proud to be called “Daddy’s girl”, she would do anything to please her Dad. No girl could have asked for a better one. Days spent tagging along in the woodshop, on trips to the hardware store, building something in the garage, rounding up the kitties for dinnertime. These were the best of days.

Sundays were different.

On Sundays, a grim line was drawn that divided people. Men from women, boys from girls, divorced men from never-divorced men. Believers from non-believers. The explanations of the world handed down on Sundays were succinct and brief, spotted with absolute expectations and judgements.

For some, this strict belief system seemed to work and satisfy the place deep within us all that longs for meaning and purpose. She saw that, and accepted it. For others, it represented a gaping black hole void of light and life. For a kid like her who saw the world in color, it was far too black-and-white.

Everywhere she turned, she found no escape from the theology prevalent in her community. It was simply variations on a theme—at school, at practice, at work, at family reunions. She knew there was no place for her in the theology. She was a girl, after all. She resented the fact that the theology required a willful shut-down of critical thinking. She was curious about the rest of the world—about other countries, science and art. She did not want to let go of these discoveries she had made through school and books. They were air and water to her. She did not want to grow up and enter a future she could already trace the edges of with her fingertips.

For a while, she was able to maintain a safe distance and kept herself whole. She learned to separate her true self to keep it intact and play along. She knew that she had a better chance at survival if she skated by on the surface. As she neared 18, the pressure to conform mounted tremendously. Against her own better judgement, she decided to give in and see if the life her family and church desired for her would work.

In Jeremy, she found someone whose spirit of adventure matched hers. She thought she could be her true self with him. But, she was ultimately too young and so wrong. Six months into a new marriage, at twenty years old, she knew she had made a terrible mistake.

When it came to faith, it was like trying on a coat that refused to fit. She tried and tried to make it work. She tried the coat on, tried stuffing her arms into it, tried pulling it over her head, tried cutting the sleeves off of it. Nothing worked. She was miserable, and trapped in a prison she had made herself.

On the outside, everything looked fine.

She knows this is why her abrupt act of leaving was so shocking for you. On the inside, nothing was fine. She was bound to a husband who did not respect her opinions, who wanted to fundamentally change the person she was. She had to fight for every tiny freedom—the use of the car, setting up at an art show to sell her work, wearing what she wanted to wear. She fought tooth and nail to protect what was left of her true self. She wanted to go back to school, and resigned herself to wait while he, instead, took classes and refused the same to her. To prove to her husband that she would never have children, she went off birth control for a full four years. That was the only way she could end that fight.

By the time she turned twenty-four she decided she had no way out. She was never a person with a tendency toward depression, but ending her life seemed like the only solution. In the end, she lived only for her dog, Crickitt, buoyed by the faint but persistent sense that this would end someday.

At twenty-five, when she found a safe place to land at the artist residency, she gathered what was left of her courage and did not go home. All hell broke loose. She remained standing in her truth.

You didn’t understand. I don’t blame you for that. But, I need you to hear me now when I say that it was a matter of life and death. I saved myself. It wasn’t easy to do, because I knew I was hurting people that I loved. Nearly sixteen years later, it remains the absolute best thing I have ever done.

Why am I telling you this now? Because, the time has come. I know that, once again, my distance is probably confusing to you. So, I’d like to clear it up.

It’s a very painful thing to have to hide your self, your personality, your hopes and dreams and visions of the future from your family. It’s also very painful to realize that the reason why they have no space for you as-you-are is due to their religion and nothing else. Finally, it’s painful to find yourself in a marriage where this is repeated.

I left to stand up for truth.

When I remained true to who I was, I found peace for the first time in a very, very long time. Mat came into my life. Fourteen years later, he continues to be a gift. He is long-suffering as I deal with things how I’ve always dealt with them—by over-working, and forcing myself to go-go-go from dawn to dusk.

I’m learning how to work through all of this, with consistent help from a very good female therapist here. I landed in therapy two years ago, after a triggering traumatic incident that I don’t wish to go into right now. I should have started it years ago, but therapy was one of those things that were reserved for the weak-of-heart (or so I believed when I was young).

Why the distance now?

In a nutshell, your vote for Trump. I was not expecting the tidal wave of emotion that came with his election. Specifically, your vote for him ripped open gaping wounds that had been lying surface-deep beneath a skin I thought was thicker. I am not alone with this feeling. So many of us who were raised in a similar way have experienced the very same thing since November, if their families supported him like you did.

Before you start with the usual excuses—”you’re watching fake news, you are misinformed, we’re not political people”—no, just stop.

Stop, and try to listen.

You do live in a bubble of your own making. You like it that way. The bubble doesn’t work for all of us. Those of us who live side-by-side with people who do not believe exactly like we do are living in the real, diverse, world. Your vote had huge consequences for all of us on the outside of your bubble.

That’s why I reject your assertion of being non-political. If you were, you would have refrained from voting or voted for a third-party candidate. I know many Christians who did this, and they have my total respect. The fact that you swallowed the smears and lies against his opponent and chose to turn a blind eye to his agenda which would so obviously hurt the poor, the marginalized, people of color, women…I find it absolutely impossible to match up with the faith that you profess.

This election was not like the others. Its consequences are already hitting the most vulnerable people in our country and will take years to undo. How can we stand by and let the healthcare debate rage, doing nothing, while my childhood friend Julie is fighting to save Medicaid for her disabled daughter? They will go bankrupt if it ends. How can we stand by and let hardworking kids be deported who were brought to this country by their parents, who have applied for and received acceptance into a program (DACA) that allows them to get an education, work and pay taxes here? How can we sit back while white nationalists run over peaceful protesters with their cars, and not stand up for our Jewish, Hispanic, African-American neighbors? How can we stand by and let sexual predators walk free, brushing off charges from women accusing them of rape? The last one is easy, because the president is one of them.

This is what I meant when I said your vote proved my perception of religion to be ideology over people.

You let your ideological stances—your single-issue vote for a vague hope of overturning abortion laws, your vote for a stolen conservative Supreme Court justice—you let this win out over actual living, breathing people. Your daughter is one of them.

Is it worth it? Because, the rest of the world is looking at white evangelicals like you and they’ve come to the same conclusion that I did after November 8th. Your faith might be precious to you, but you canceled out any weight it might have carried to the rest of us when you voted for this racist con-man. As the CEOs on his advisory board acted quickly to distance themselves after the Charlottesville incident, the evangelical council remain stoic and steadfast in their support of him, with the exception of one brave man.

Sure, I know you vote Republican. I grew up with each Republican president’s photo lined up under my own senior portrait in the hallway. But, this time, your party line vote went too far. That’s why I spent hard-earned money to go to Washington, D.C. to protest Trump and his disgusting treatment of women and minorities at the Women’s March. I went so I could experience the march first-hand, and I went so I could speak the truth of what happened if it were to be called a fake paid protest by Fox News. Do you want to know what it was really like? It was the largest and most peaceful crowd I have ever been in, and ultimately one of the best experiences of my entire life.

I’ll go ahead and say it: your vote for him has canceled out any right you may feel you have to proselytize your faith to me. You can no longer talk to me about Jesus, about the god you believe in. It simply doesn’t hold water any longer. I will walk out. I will not sit through saying grace in your home again. And, if you have a photo of Trump up in the hallway as a symbol of your support for him, be assured that I will not enter your home at all.

I respect you as my parents, and thank you for being loving ones. You taught me many, many valuable things — how to be fair in business, how to love one another, how to work hard, how to show love to animals, how to live a quiet and fulfilling life. I’ve taken those lessons and run with them.

When I left nearly sixteen years ago, you did not support me. It took a long time for you to come around, only after the husband I was running from encouraged you to see things a different way. This election has opened up that wound, among others.

That’s why I just need some time.

I’m trying to reconcile your vote with who I know you to be at your core. I have spent all these years over-reaching to keep our relationship going. It’s hard not to feel that I count less than the others, because I do not believe like you do, because I do not have children, because I live so far away.

I will come around in time if you are willing to hear me without judgement. I love you both, and worry about your health and your well-being constantly. I miss your companionship, but I’m not coming back anytime soon because I need to continue working through what I’ve started. But make no mistake—I am furious.

You raised a fighter for truth and justice. I will not stop fighting for the least of these. I will never again apologize for who I am, who I have always been. That almost killed me once. A long time ago, Dad, you said that I was at a crossroads. That I could choose your way and be saved, or I could continue down the path I was already on. With the second option, you said you could see that I would help others to do the same.

I chose the second option, because it’s air that allows me to breathe freely. If I can help just one see that there is light and life on the other side of indoctrination, and help them also choose life, it’s worth it to me to fight this fight.

I hope, in some small way, that makes you proud.

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Old September 8th, 2017, 07:48 AM   #2
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Sadly, she, you and others like you justify your own hatred and bigotry by trying to point out the same qualities in others. What you don't realize is that you yourselves have "ensconced" yourselves into you own little bubbles. You sit there with each other and cluck your tongues at the bigotry and hate you think you see everywhere else all the while harboring your own, but of course, yours is "justified". You toss out generalities and paint with broad strokes all the while condemning the very same in others. Here is a sad truth for you, you are no different than they are. Will any of this open your eyes to your own failings? Sadly no.
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Old September 8th, 2017, 08:03 AM   #3
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back atcha
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Old September 8th, 2017, 08:13 AM   #4
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So we are just C and P entire articles now.
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Old September 8th, 2017, 08:18 AM   #5
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Thank doG that this social justice shit is on a down turn.

As the elderly snowflakes attempt to cry victim hood from up in their ivory towers in hopes of rallying their young followers into a frenzy.

It's too late... Everyone knows that there is no wolf.
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Old September 8th, 2017, 08:25 AM   #6
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In a world full of political correctness, safe spaces, participation trophies, and social justice, a whole bunch of Millennials just got a big, painful dose of reality.

All of those kids who have expensive college degrees that didn’t train them to do anything productive just discovered that the world could and will say “no” to them.

And what happened?

They’re throwing the equivalent of an epic toddler temper tantrum on the floor of America. They are kicking and screaming in the streets, wailing to the heavens, and refusing to stop until they get their way.

What society*should be learning now is why it’s important that children don’t get trophies just for showing up and why a good parent makes certain that there are consequences for their children’s actions.

What society is*actually*doing is coddling of a bunch of Marxist-educated brats in a way that will only perpetuate this type of behavior in the future.

America has effectively shut down to give these heartbroken kids time to either recover or take their angst to the streets.

At Yale University – YALE, for the love of crickets, an elite institution of education to which only the brightest and highest achieving kids can gain access – some professors made midterm exams optional. In a tweet posted by the editor of the Yale Daily News, Jon Victor posted a photo of the email sent out by Professor Steven Berry.

BREAKING: Yale Econ 115 professor makes midterm exam optional after students write in expressing shock about presidential election: pic.twitter.com/JQY8GFsQiV
— Jon Victor (@jon_victor_) November 9, 2016
Also at Yale, an election “primal scream” was organized so that students could, well, scream. I couldn’t make this up.

The scream offered students a chance to come together, process the shock of the moment and use that energy to move forward, said a sophomore at the event. She added that the primal scream is in no way incitement or an invitation for reckless behavior, but rather a contained period of expression that hopefully enables its participants to express their frustration productively. (source)
In other parts of the country *cough* California *cough* students walked out of classes due to their unhappiness over the election results.*Berkeley High Principal Sam Pasarow told NBC Bay Area:

“They’re angry. They’re crying and they feel unsafe. There’s a great amount of solidarity.”
What the hell, America?

It’s time for some tough love. Pay attention, little millennial Snowflakes, because this is important.

Dear Millennial Snowflakes:
November 8th dawned bright for you. You woke up, confident that social justice would prevail and that the first woman president of the United States was going to be announced later that evening. Fueled by misinformation and fake polls from the likes of Huffington Post and CNN, the thought that Hillary Clinton might be defeated never even crossed your minds.

You went to the polls, some of them for the very first time, and cast your votes for someone sheerly based on her possession of a vagina.

Because you’ve always received a sticker just for turning in your homework, because you scorn those who think differently as uneducated hicks, and because you don’t understand the word “no,” the shock was palpable when the electoral map began to turn red.

There were tears, hugs, and whispered words of support as you watched in horror. Yes, kids, Donald Trump was elected the 45th president of the United States by the process in which presidents have been elected since the dawning of America.

Social media was filled with tearful videos, whispered pleas, typed messages of utter terror.

Source: CNN

Give me a freakin’ break, Snowflakes.

Where were you when Hillary Clinton and the DNC stole the primary by colluding against Bernie Sanders? Seriously, that would have been the time to protest.*When you were screwed by your own party, you didn’t set things on fire and burn effigies of Hillary Clinton, who is very possibly the most corrupt politician ever to run for office. If you didn’t protest that debacle, it’s pretty hypocritical to protest now.

How do you think working class Americans felt when Obama got re-elected and we knew that he’d be demanding more than our mortgage payments each month for a crappy health care system that doesn’t even actually pay for anything unless your bills exceed $5000? I haven’t been happy with my choices at the polls for decades, but I’ve never wept, feverishly looked up the number for the suicide hotline, refused to function, or set things on fire.

Grow up. We don’t always get our way. This is reality and sometimes we don’t like it.

Here’s what you should be angry about, Snowflakes.
You should be angry about the fact that you have not been adequately prepared for life.

You should be angry about the fact that you are now paralyzed with “fear” because society has made you this way.

You should be angry about the fact that no one has ever taught you coping mechanisms.

Life is not fair. We don’t always get a sticker. Sometimes, we actually lose a game.

Losing an election is not a threat to your existence – it is how life goes for a percentage of America every four years.

The fact that there are no consequences for your current bad behavior is not helping you. It’s perpetuating your unhealthy cycle of poor coping mechanisms. It’s providing positive reinforcement.

Across America, you, the defeated liberals, so-called social justice warriors, and irate students are pouring into the streets*to vent your rage.

The Washington Post reports*(emphasis mine):

For most students, this was their first presidential election. And for many, the response to the results was visceral.
Hundreds of shouting UCLA students poured through campus and into the streets of the surrounding community. The Daily Bruin*estimated the crowd at more than 1,500 and reported that they began tearing up and burning a Trump pińata and tried to flip over a car, stopping when they realized someone was inside it.
But that is far from the worst of it.

You have shut down roadways and commerce. You have destroyed property. You have had a big ole hissy fit in front of the entire world.

You “refuse to accept” the results of the election, which is particularly rich, since you pilloried Donald Trump for refusing to say he would accept the results if they didn’t go his way.

Your current behavior is akin to laying down in the chocolate aisle of Target and refusing to move until your mom buys you a candy bar. The only difference is, on the rare occasion that one of my children behaved like that, I picked them up and carried them out of the store, leaving a fully loaded shopping cart behind.

You people need to be sent to your rooms until you can behave yourselves, not coddled and given a cookie.

And now what you started is getting completely out of hand.
Believe it or not, we have some things in common. I understand wanting to change the world and make it a better place. This is the very reason why I do what I do. But I know that my actions lead places, and I try to think this through before taking them. I reflect on the consequences.

And that’s what you missed when you drank a double shot of the Mainstream Media Koolaid and emotionally reacted to your candidate’s loss. You didn’t think about the consequences because, in your pampered life, there have never been any consequences.

Well, here’s your reality check. Your well-meaning yet misguided movement has been co-opted.

What started out as moderately peaceful demonstrations (if you call blocking traffic and screaming “F*** Trump” peaceful) have been infiltrated by paid instigators who are taking things to the next level and inciting chaos, violence, and destruction.

You are in way over your heads.

Some people are calling for all-out war against those who voted for Trump, like this woman who spoke to CNN in Los Angeles.

Just to make sure you caught that (emphasis mine):

“If we don’t fight, who is going to fight for us? People had to die for your freedom where we’re at today. We can’t just do rallies, we have to fight back, There will be casualties on both sides. There will be, because people have to die to make a change in this world.”
Is this really what you want?

Do you honestly want to kill people who voted for Trump? Do you want to overthrow the government and only allow one school of opinion to exist in America, but only if it’s yours? Do you want to live in an America that is like North Korea, where reality nothing more than a creation of the propaganda machine and differing points of view are stamped out with a jackboot?

Come one, now. You have to see how ridiculous this is.

You are now hopelessly out of your depth.

The situation you started has escalated beyond your wildest nightmares, and if you have any sense at all, now would be the time to feel fear, because, now, you truly are in danger.

Protests in Portland turned into out-and-out riots last night. While you thought you could just burn effigies, chant, and maybe sing Kumbiyah, you’re now being intimidated by professional protesters.

Mike Bivins, a local freelance journalist, said the protest took a noticeable turn late Thursday as demonstrators passed a Northeast Portland car dealership, where some*starting breaking car windows. A dumpster and a newsstand were set on fire.
Bivins said a Black Lives Matter organizer at Pioneer Courthouse Square told demonstrators earlier in the day not to police “anyone else’s form of protest.” (source)
Don’t delude yourselves into thinking that you’re on the same side. Their agenda is not your agenda.

It’s time to go home before someone gets hurt.
Please take this motherly advice. You need to go home now.

Everyone knows you’re mad, but while expressing your outrage, you’ve made a terrible mess of this.

You have cleared the path for violent, paid protesters to destroy entire neighborhoods. You sought to cause havoc because you didn’t get your way, and your havoc has been matched and exceeded. Now, family homes, monuments, and small businesses all over the country are being defaced and destroyed.

Neighborhoods full of immigrants.

Full of people with every skin color under the sun.

Full of the women, children, gay people, and straight people that you claim to be championing.

This is the reality you’ve created with your righteous indignation. You turned neighborhoods into scenes out of Mad Max. Whether you destroyed property or not, you opened the door for this.

Go home so the adults can clean up your mess.

And think about what you’ve done.


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Old September 8th, 2017, 08:44 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by tristanrobin View Post
back atcha
Sorry, no. Me? I'm just sad (not surprised mind you), but sad that neither side can climb out of their hate filled gutters long enough to acknowledge their own short comings.
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Old September 8th, 2017, 08:46 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Quigley View Post
Sadly, she, you and others like you justify your own hatred and bigotry by trying to point out the same qualities in others. What you don't realize is that you yourselves have "ensconced" yourselves into you own little bubbles. You sit there with each other and cluck your tongues at the bigotry and hate you think you see everywhere else all the while harboring your own, but of course, yours is "justified". You toss out generalities and paint with broad strokes all the while condemning the very same in others. Here is a sad truth for you, you are no different than they are. Will any of this open your eyes to your own failings? Sadly no.
I really didn't get that impression at all. She wanted to be neutral, they were all "my way or the highway" types. It's just that you start out way on their side.
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Old September 8th, 2017, 08:47 AM   #9
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I'm tired of people being ugly to each other. I'm tired of all the pain I feel and hear in the world everyday. There's too much of it. It's like pieces of glass in my head all the time. Can you understand?
John Coffey, The Green Mile
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Old September 8th, 2017, 11:20 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Quigley View Post
I'm tired of people being ugly to each other. I'm tired of all the pain I feel and hear in the world everyday. There's too much of it. It's like pieces of glass in my head all the time. Can you understand?
John Coffey, The Green Mile
Then do your best to not add to it.
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