This week has been a total shit show in every sense of the word. Good and bad, including my dog being sick after I fed him a treat sent by a friend, still stuck somewhere in his digestive system and knock wood soon to pass through completely (N.B.: beware any doggie treats not made in the U.S. and shame on me for not checking the label before letting him have it). And now, on Good Friday because of course he did, the reactionary, conservative activist Federal judge in Texas who was chosen for this express purpose made his ruling that the longtime miscarriage and abortion drug Mifepristone is not to be sold throughout the U.S. – not just Texass, but the entire country. Okay, yes, he also put a immediate one week stay on the order to give the Biden Administration an opportunity to appeal, but FFS. Mifepristone has been used for twenty-three years, twenty-three, thus, declaring it unsafe, while also refusing to refer to fetal tissue in his poor reasoned ruling as – um – fetal tissue because it’s a human life, is likely to make my head explode. His anti-LGBTQIA stance is also well known and documented. In other words, this guy is a right-wing nut, a ‘Christian’ who hates women and anyone who falls even slightly outside the ‘safe space’ heteronormative bubble he occupies. A ‘Christian’ who hates is making (bad) law to control women’s reproductive choice, and their options when spontaneously miscarrying. Happy Easter, y’all!

And then there’s Tennessee. WTAF. The state where the KKK was born ousts two young black men from the legislature because they ‘broke decorum’, failing to similarly expel a white woman who did the exact same thing at the exact same time. You could argue that it’s nice when racists just say the quiet part out loud, but that’s cold comfort to the two-hundred thousand constituents these men represent whose voices have now been expunged and silenced along with their duly elected representatives. Their constituents aren’t the only voices being ignored as Tennessee lawmakers shun these young men – they’re also ignoring thousands of peaceful protesters demanding sensible gun safety laws with whom the ‘Tennessee Three’ marched after yet another mass shooting at a school. And then there’s the legislature’s recent ban on drag shows in public places – where else are drag shows meant to be? Underground caves open only to trolls, woodchucks and moles? Show is show, show means show, not hide, you neanderthal numbnuts. Don’t like drag shows? Don’t go to one. Sigh.

I have a cousin in Tennessee who occasionally emails me articles about TN as the superior of the two different states in which we have chosen to live. I’ve shown amazing restraint in not reaching out to him this week, asking – no, telling him to eat crow, but I may not be able to hold out much longer. He’s the guy who, when I confronted him about his and his dad’s racism, said about his dad, ‘but he wasn’t a mean racist’, which made me laugh out loud as I read it in his email defense of his unapologetically, openly racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-semitic father. You mean he didn’t lynch anyone? Didn’t burn crosses on lawns? Racism by definition is mean, as well as cruel, stupid, ignorant, and damaging – particularly as white men have used their power over and over again to turn racism into policy, and into law, embedding it into institutions of all kinds. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my Uncle Hubert, who has been dead since I was in my twenties, but Hubert (and his son, for that matter) was old school Tennessee, even down to what my cousin described as another (bullshit) example of his dad’s non-mean/soft-racism, ‘the only time I ever saw my dad weep was at his black nanny’s funeral’. Of course. JHFC. The truth is, my verrrrrrry privileged cousin only cares about one issue: the legalization of marijuana, which Tennessee – unlike New York State – has failed to do. He’s one of those white, wealthy libertarian boomer bros who is blissfully ignorant of 97% or more of what actually matters to those who weren’t and aren’t as blessed as he has always been. Grrrrrrrr. I’m fond of him, and – I won’t change him. I could, however, make him eat some crow…

Deep breaths. We can and will root out and defeat this authoritarian christo-fascist, white supremacist misogynistic nonsense. And, it will take time, and effort. I’m all in.

The good news? We outnumber the hateful by a lot, Janet P (I won’t even attempt to spell her last name) won her Supreme Court race in Wisconsin by a lot, and the progressive Dem candidate won the Chicago Mayor’s race, a young rising star who – like AOC – reframes the issues powerfully, necessarily, and with straight-talking common sense a resident of any city could understand, and support, knock wood! Yay. And, the tributes to my friend Dennis – so deserved – are pouring in, his services will be held this week over a 48-hour period that might, might give those who loved him enough time to pat their respects, and the best news of all? I knew him, loved him, and he knew and loved me. I was so lucky to be his friend. How great is that? PDG.

I include the graphic below as the complainants in the TX case like to say that abortion and the abortifacient drug Mifepristone (and contraceptive meds, in case you’re wondering what they’ll go after next) are ‘harmful’ to women and girls, are a kind of ‘violence’ toward women and girls. Fuck all the way off, you misogynistic pieces of shit.