My Congressional Acts:

The Common Sense Approach to Texting, Beer and Wine Act of 2015

—reduce the minimum drinking age for beer and wine to 18.

Establishes if you can serve a glass of wine, you may drink a glass of wine.

Establishes all cars after the year 2018 shall be equipped with two things; an ignition breathalyzer monitored by the drivers smart phone and a texting disabling feature which automatically sends responses to the person texting you while you are driving,

“sorry I am driving right now, please call me so I can use my hands free feature on my phone”.

The Servers, Tele-marketers, Sales Act of 2015

—establishes a service industry 1099 form. Where Servers, Tele-marketers and Sales people shall have their own schedule C just like any other individual contractor in America, enhancing how to run a small business. These individual businesses will have the same write-offs and more accelerated depreciation rights on vehicles, phones, wine openers, etc, as larger companies.  These individual businesses can also write-off their entire education costs and can negotiate exclusivity contracts with different restaurants and venues within their industry.

The Sweat Equity Mentor Tax Act of 2016.

—establishes individual learning mentorships where sweat equity and the time a person with tech and mechanical knowledge, communication skills and tactile knowledge about a particular industry or trade spends educating, via observation and training; allowing student loans to be extended for these individual training relationships and establishing this one on one observational relationship is just as valuable as a paper and institutional investment, I.e. universities. Regulated by small businesses who hire these type of individuals and an tax credit exchange occurs.

Boomers are encouraged to retire earlier and establish an individual mentorship and retirement plan based on apprenticeships without tax and liability consequences; with merit based tax incentives (while the child over the age of 13 lives without public assistant as an adult, the mentor receives the tax credit for at least half or more of what the child could receive in public assistance as an adult). Only one child over the age of 13 can be mentored per year. The mentor must commit to at least one year in order to establish the future tax credit.

Where individual time spent teaching and coaching a young person who’s mother or father are on public assistant becomes just as valuable as a monetary hand out.

The Digital Pornography Net Neutrality Act of 2016.

—establishes all pornographic videos and cartoons on the internet must require a .XXX ending. Marketing teasers (Free Porn) which are currently free to the public and can be viewed by anyone shall only be viewable with a computer or smart phone that has enabled .XXX. Therefore restricting and parent-trafficking pornographic access for children under the age of 18.

This act also creates a national pornography sales tax (as most pornography is shot outside the US) in order to maintain “net neutrality” throughout the world and this Net Neutrality national sales tax shall be collected by the cc users bank account and deposited into a net neutrality maintenance fund used exclusively to service and increase access to public airways and public digital thorough fares. Similar to a wheel tax back in the fifties and sixties.

This law also establishes set internet speeds (digital highway speeds) must be kept the same in order to give small businesses the same digital access as large businesses. This act also allows the expansion of rural ISP expansion and does not allow ISP’s to create a concierge speed for more expensive services.

The Department of Offense Act of 2016.  

—establish ranches, not military bases, throughout the world where we as a country set up local food producing and meat purveying sustainable economies. This encourages local farmers and establishes open source trading trade across the world, under the same flag as the United States Military of Arms.  

The “Department of Offense” shall be established in honor of the PTSD folks who have served in all wars and combat. At least half of the current Department of Defense budget shall be used to expand the ethical treatment of the hungry; encouraging locals to cultivate, innovate and grow local food to enhance clean water supply via invention and global dialogue.

The Poker by the Hand Act of. 2017

—establishes if a state readily pursues and establishes a state sponsored gambling cartel called the “Lottery” then local referendums can be held to allow poker halls to exist within local municipalities. Similar to the liquor by the drink vote. This poker by the City vote will allow inner city commerce to be set up rather than a regressive tax on the poorest of the poor.

The Marijuana Farmers Act of 2016

—Federal Law subordinates to state law, via the ninth amendment, allowing state legislatures to vote on allowing farmers to grow and cultivate marijuana plants, regardless if state legislatures allow the retail distribution of marijuana or not. Farmers would be enabled to grow Marijuana for personal consumption up to an ounce a month and/or transport and resell the Marijuana plant in it’s whole form (seedling farmers). This Act will establish up to a hundred ounces a month may be shipped (using the post office exclusively for the first ten years) to states who have recognized the legal recreational and medical use of marijuana.

Just Because We Can Doesn’t Mean We Should

I was talking to a friend of mine the other day who was struggling to balance the responsibilities of motherhood and all that comes with her decision making process for developing her children’s priorities and self-esteem.

We talked for several hours over coffee down at a little shop in Atlanta where I work selling home elevators to high-end tract builders like John Weiland and to high-end craft builders who meticulously take their time on every inch of the exclusive fifteen square foot “house” they are constructing.

For the last twenty years I’ve been all over this great country selling home elevators.

As a serial entrepreneur, dating back to when I hand wrote out fliers, back on Rolling Hills Drive,  telling neighborhood folks I’d pick up all their apples or fruit tree droppings for $1 an hour, I have loved the art of wheeling and dealing.

I can remember the older folks I’d talk to in Garland Acres who’d try to convince me that their newspapers had gotten wet at least twelve out of the thirty times I threw them, and that some sort of discount should ensue.

I promise you these Garland folks never really understood the contractual agreement between the publisher (The Johnson City Press Chronicle) and the dispenser (the paper boy, or in my case, the paper girl) and how these Garland-folks always thought that when they called The Chronicle to complain about the inadequacy of my throw that it was not the Press that was going to pay penance, rather it was the arm-thrower’s problem to begin with.

I never really understood the art of good cop/bad cop until the fella at the press, who took these complainer’s calls, explained it to me over the course of our newspaper relationship back in 1983.

“What happen out there today?”, the fella on the other end of my line said around 6:45pm on my Sunday evening.

“What do you mean? I delivered the newspapers like I was suppose to!”, I’d always say back as though just the suggestion of impropriety by him had knocked me back on my heels.

“What do you mean, WHAT DO I MEAN?? WE got four phones calls today that the Sunday papers you delivered were wet and we had to run someone over there and deliver four new dry papers. How come you didn’t put the plastic around the papers Michael? How come you let the papers get wet? Listen, we can’t have this!! It is your responsibility to deliver these newspapers everyday and come rain or shine or the creek rising you must deliver the daily news DRY!!”, my paper landlord said that Sunday evening with a hint of potential exit signs flashing along our conversation way.

“Listen Mr. SoandSo, I delivered the newspapers over six hours before the rain came in and if those folks didn’t go out and get their paper six hours before the rain came in then how is this my fault? I mean it’s their stupid faults for leaving their paper to get rained on. I delivered it first thing Sunday morning like I was suppose to and I just don’t understand why they’d let it sit out there and get rained on??? All four of those folks were home when I threw their paper, and all four of them are always complaining, I mean I just don’t understand maybe we should just cancel them because they seem like the type of folks who just are always going to complain!!! AND IF THEEEYYY don’t want their Sunday paper to get wet then they should build a carport or something where I can throw their paper dry. LOOK!!! THIS ISN’T MY FAULT!!!”, I accuse back to Mr. Soandso as I plead my case that this wet newspaper problem isn’t my fault it’s the fault of the dereliction of homeownership; trying to convince him that this isn’t my problem, but rather the problem of the complainer and the Publisher.

“What do you mean this isn’t your fault!! The weather forecast said rain, and we gave you plastic; plastic you chose not to put on YOUR 178 Sunday Papers and you threw their paper without a plastic cover around it!!! A PLASTIC COVER WE DELIVERED TO YOU THIS MORNING!!! A plastic cover you chose NOT TO PUT ON!! You were the one that put yourself in this debacle!!! You Michael!! No one else but you is to blame here, and…..uuuhh and another thing!!!” he tries to finish, but being the thirteen year old smartass I have become by nineteen eighty-three, I quickly interrupt him,

“Uuuhhhh Mr. Soandso you can’t throw the Sunday paper, it’s too big!! I have to drive my scooter up their driveway or in some cases, I have to park my scooter, get off my scooter and walk the Sunday paper up to their front porch because that’s where they’ve told me they want it!! And it takes my an extra hour and half to fold and insert those huge Sunday papers filled with your advertising profits !! AND LISTEN!!! I don’t get anymore money for the plastic wrapping you guys SEND OVER or the walking that it takes me triple the time to hand-deliver to these front-porch Sunday deliveries and I don’t see you guys applauding me on my sacrifice of my time to make sure your biggest revenue day gets delivered!!! BECAUSE MY DAD IS ALWAYS SAYING, TIME IS MONEY!! AND YET IM NOT SEEING ANY MORE MONEY!! AND YOU GUYS GET PAID WHETHER I PUT A PLASTIC BOW AROUND THE PAPER OR NOT!!!”, I say back as though I’m Norma Rae and it’s nineteen seventy-nine and not nineteen eighty-three.

A long pause then occurs and although I had been accustom to fighting for my rights around my homestead, this was the first time I had spoken this way to a non-kinfolk adult who wasn’t related to me by blood or marriage; plus the art of selective and strategic pause had not come to my motor-mouth yet, so I just continue forth and past Mr. Soandso’s pause,

“Anyways SIR, you can’t throw the Sunday paper, it’s not possible!!”, I quickly finish my subjugation of my current paper landlord.

“Listen Michael, I don’t care what you thought, you need to know that four of your clients in Garland Acres called today and said their papers got wet and we had to run them new papers, and you need to know if we have to do that too many times then you’ll have to start paying or we’ll have to find someone else who can deliver dry newspapers!! GOT IT!!”, he says without care of knowledge of who I really am,

“It’s Michele, It’s Michele, not Michael, it’s Michele”, I say a third time so he gets that I’m a paper-girl not a paper-boy thrower.

“OK MICHELLLLLLLL BUT WHY DOES IT SAY MICHELE ON MY BOARDS THEN!! Why does it say Michael and not Michelle?” he says back to me as we wind down our Sunday night of paper-complaints, along with my daily dose of this is how things need to get done business lecture or else conversation, coinciding with my explanation of how my original mommy gah thought it unique to spell my name with one L versus two.

A Mommy-Gah uniqueness that has worked so much in my favor that sometimes I think if I didn’t  actually let Chattanooga, Oak Ridge or Cleveland folks see my face when I decide to run for Congress, but only my words, half of the folks might actually think me to be a boy after hearing and reading about my entrepreneurial   accomplishments with one L; it might only come to fruition that I’m a woman when they get around to hearing about my differences and failures…..

I often wonder if third district folks will still vote for me if they find out how flawed most business folks like me have to be in order to become successful…because that’s the funny thing about this American Dream business; for those with no generational banking net, no chartered business course and no understanding of how hard it is out there if you lack the award winning Pharma-look.

It might just surprise some of you how many times a small business person’s judgement and character is challenged while fighting the good fight in order to feed, cloth and shelter their families. A true sense of capitalistic dogma that most small business women now have in common with their sixties and eighties businessmen counterparts.

Lawyers aside, of course-because lawyers are taught to argue both for and against the corruption of capitalism and democracy, regardless of personal choice or desired intent, segueing into the legal weather forecast that becomes interdependently polluted by the byproduct of the knowledge that neither really exists exclusively without corrosion of relationship.

When facing the two-headed figurine of capitalism and democracy, neither is germane to creating law anymore. It is the servicing of our laws that begins to take precedence over the creation of our laws when discussing your decision to vote for or against a citizen’s candidacy. And as long as the ninety percent base of democracy and capitalism pays the corporate insurance fees, we the people will continue to ride the banking and insurance tsunamis of global financial change, with little to no balance for our ten percent of creative crumbs.

Because really, these corporate insurance and banking markets that these lawyers and bankers deal in are artificial constructs.

Life is funny and although you have to be strategic in order to survive and flourish, especially now as relationship selling has broken down and content and context selling has ramped up; you must always remember that perception surpassed truth and perspective a long time ago…

It is those with the understanding of a life which isn’t perfect, and that will never be perfect, who will truly reach the epicenter of Jefferson’s meaning of The Pursuit of Happiness.

To be continued…

My fourth grade Bigot friend named Ronald

I fondly remember fourth grade at South-side Elementary School as my pivotal elementary school year. It was also the first year I managed not to be sent to Mrs. Maltsberger’s office (she was my principal for all six grades at Southside and I had been sent at least once a year to have her lecture me on keeping my mouth shut and my ears open).

Several serious things happened during my fourth grade year; we got to be in the outside trailers and they had air-conditioning, my beloved teacher had a miscarriage mid-year which made me very sad because she was so sad, she eventually left for the year and I remember crying so hard on her last day with us; and it was also the first grade where I had a black student in my class. And although I can not remember his name, I do remember my other classmate Ronald’s name.

Ronald was a white kid who wore thick black glasses and a nasa-branded-pocket-button up shirts. Ronald also had a last name that was very near to my first letter-last name, therefore I spent a lot of time talking to Ronald during the first half of my trailer season, not because he liked me but because I just liked talking and he was closest to me.

It’s funny how some childhood memories stay with you even when others do not and the difference can sometimes only be separated via developmental circumstantial shock of someone else’s truth.

It’s odd because although I had played ball with black boys and girls throughout my grade school experience, before my fourth grade year I had never realized until I met Ronald’s hate that they were viewed by others as different than me. I had always known of the word nigger because my Daddy O watched tv and sometimes the grown-ups would use it, but it wasn’t until I met Ronald’s inflection I understood why I shouldn’t use it.   

Ronald’s hate was palpable and every time my black classmate would speak you could feel Ronald’s snarl, which in turn, made me want to snarl back at him every-time he turned around and looked at me, no matter what the context of his eyes or questioning.

I’m what you might call a non-flighter and although in my later years I’ve mellowed some, I still like a good ole verbal throw down. Especially when I know I’m on the right side of right.

I remember the way Ronald spoke; nasally, but with conviction, as though he knew more than the average Joe and I remember how often Ronald used the word Nigger when he spoke on the playground. I remember going home to my mommy gah and asking her why some folks used that word so freely and yet she had been steadily teaching me not to use it, ever.

I remember my putrid-Jesus-can-only-help Uncle (I use this word loosely as I haven’t spoken to this devil-incarnate in over thirty years) Carol Tipton used that word as though he was speaking in rebellious tongue and not in hate. I also remember the day I had enough of slanky-nine-year-old-Ronald’s rhetoric about how he couldn’t stand niggers and if niggers didn’t exist then the world would be a better place because of it.

So I devised a plan. A plan that would show Ronald how wrong he was to think the way he thought; a plan that might fix ole Ronald’s generational-hate and make him see how wrong his parents were; you see, my Mommy Gah had explained to me that it really wasn’t Ronald’s fault he was like he was, because Ronald was too young to understand true hated yet, it was Ronald’s parents who were teaching him to hate with words.

Now I know some of you facehookers are thinking, well duh, but listen for a minute.

What my Mommy Gah said back then made me feel sorry for ole Ronald and I just knew if I could devise a scenario where Ronald could see how wrong he was about our black classmate then maybe we’d all be better for it.  

So off I went to strategizing. I talked to my Nonnie the most about my strategy, I prayed about my strategy with my Ma-Maw and I talked about it to my brother, who of course, thought it was a stupid idea because he thought Ronald was just ignorant and I was an idiot for even giving a crap about what dumb ole Ronald thought anyways.

But mostly I talked to my Nonnie, cause like always, she was my best friend and she’d always chat me up like I was her equal, never dismissing any idea that came out of my restless nine year old mind and mouth.

To be continued…

My fourth grade bigot friend named Ronald


Part 2

“Jesus is my lord and savior, is he yours?”, Ronald would always turn and ask me at least once a week, as I whispered in his ear to help me figure out what our teacher was talking about cause I was too busy trying to figure out how to make my friends laugh.

“Yes”, I would say back because it seemed wrong to say otherwise and although I knew Ronald was full of hate for black folks he seemed nice enough the rest of our time.

Its funny to me how the folks that always seem closest to Jesus never really understand why Jesus was a confusing part of my young elementary school mind. You see, although I have morphed into a non-literal, more figurative mind; back in my elementary school days I was more sheltered; therefore, I never had a clue why folks around me always wanted to talk about The Lord, or about God.

My years spent traveling between Rock Creek Park in Erwin, TN and Sinking Creek Baptist Church, outside Elizabethton, TN were at the very least confusing and at the very most, very enlightening. Because as a literal young person who didn’t really understand Art and Jesus, but understood the difference between hate and love, I stayed pretty confused growing up where I did.

Sometimes that confusion was masked by the basic general understanding of myself, and that I wanted people to like me; no matter what the cost to me might have been.

It’s funny, because thank The Lord I was as good, if not better , than your average Joe-athlete around the corner and I was a quick study. As my Daddy O often likes to say, “you might not be as smart as your Mommy but you pick up things quick” (a backwards compliment if ever there was one).

And being that I could play just about anyone’s street corner sport, even with my ever-increasing pot-gut, this helped me move past the generational-teasing that some girls might experience from both sexes.

You see, I went from being picked last on the playground in first grade to being picked first by second grade. And although Bonnie Garbiras gave me a run for my money when she moved into my hood, I could still out maneuver even her powerful leg.

It was only when I fell to me knees to stop myself from beating up my poor ole crush, Monty White (Monty was shorter than me but I loved him more than my favorite smurf) in sixth grade, did I understand that comedy, in it’s genuine form, could deflate a getting-too-serious heated discussion.

I try to use comedic deflection like Jesus using parables, one must always know when to pull out their comedic voice in order to deflate the combustion of both competing hot air balloons, and yet, a person must not be afraid to bellow down and yell and scream in order to get someone’s attention to what’s wrong with this place; and I’ve always suspected had the hand of God sacrificed Mary Magdalene over Jesus, well we might not even have Christianity as we know it today. Because although Mary Christ does have a symphonic flare to it, Jesus Christ just sounds a lot better.

“Hey let’s teach Ronald a lesson about how he thinks he knows everything but he doesn’t”, I whisper to my classmate next to me.

“Huh?”, they said back.

“Listen we need to teach Ronald that not all black people are bad and that he shouldn’t use that word my mommy is always telling me we can’t use”, I say back to my fourth grade co-conspirator

“Huh?”, they say back again

“LISTEN….I’m going to steal Ronald’s pencil (remember facehookers this isn’t a time when we have boxes of pencils, this was 1979 not 1996) when he gets up to go write on the chalkboard and you’re not going to tell him I stole it and let’s see who he blames?”, I say in hopes that my fourth-grade compadre is picking up on what I’m master-minding today.

“You want to steal Ronald’s  pencil so he will want to fight you?”, they question back,

“NO LISTENNNNNN, I’ve been trying to figure out a way to show Ronald how wrong he is about black people and I bet you anything he’ll blame the black kid!”, I point over to our black classmates, and by now a few other classmates had joined in on my “joke”

“YEAH Yeah, that’ll be funny and let’s see what he does?”, my behind-my-chair neighbor to the left of me says as the popcorn machine of fourth grade boredom starts to warm up.

to be continued…


Good morning facehookets, on the Eve of Jesus’s resurrection I am reminded of a story my grandmother told my about Jesus’s love and forgiveness.

“Through him, all things can happen, as long as you open your heart to his forgiveness Michele”,

Easter weekend always will be and was my Ma-Maw’s favorite weekend. She loved this time of year.

She especially loved taking me to her little white church on Easter Sunday in Johnson City, TN. And although I often tell folks I am definitely not the organized religion type of person, for many different reasons, it is my strong affiliation to my Ma-Maw’s heart that binds me to Jesus and always brings me back to my soul-home for Easter Sunday.

For years I have struggled with the understanding of who God is to me and how the interpretation of Jesus’s teachings can live hand in hand with both my doubt and my faith. It is peculiar to me when folks seem so certain about religious doctrine and unconditionally believe what others have taught them over the years, without any rendition of one’s own words and deeds, especially by others who seem so godly to me.

For me, it is my actual doubt of things that leads me back to my faith in almost every instance of my nightly prayers. I am also reminded many times throughout my days why Jesus prayed and begged,

“forgive them father, for they know not what they do”,  is used daily as a justification of the collapse of restrained judgement filled with no hope for others and only admonishment for dilapidated immoral souls who once they’ve judge, look for material effects for happiness and serenity

It is this prayer by Jesus that sustains me throughout my days of walking in the footsteps of him and understanding how often his faith must have been challenged as he saw such fillers and foolery happening day in and day out as some folks aspired for the lavishness of a gratuitous lifestyle within his name, only to use his father’s name and judgement of others to fill their seats.

It is my overall understanding of the abundance of Jesus’s grace in giving to others, instead of oneself, that fills my understanding of faith, hope and this acknowledged acceptance within Jesus that always seems to be the only purpose of God’s love in our lives in the first place

Coin-operated pastors are no different than coin-operated politicians, and if you are going to tithe this weekend, please tithe locally; as our community has a lot of need.

In honor of both my grandmothers today, I will be utilizing my time to help others help themselves as the persistence of some folk’s lack of hope leads to the recklessness of their bad judgment. And with the knowledge of this fact and the acknowledgment  that one hand lent to another hand truly can make all the difference in our souls, I ask you to reach out to someone in need today and take their hand in yours.

Trust me when I say, the warmth you will feel cannot be bought or sold anywhere

Happy Easter Sunday, and remember how much love you have been given and if for some reason you feel your coffers are empty right now, know the power of giving and sharing your time with someone in need of hope and faith can mean more than the almighty dollar, even though you can’t write it off on your taxes, like organized institutions of faith do, know your time-given will serve your heart and your community as you go through life with the understanding of what Jesus wished for as he gave his sins for us.

Because know within yourself all things can happen; know through the story of Jesus’s resurrection all hope in each other is restored and all your past sins are to be forgiven, and know your soul can make a difference to another in need of this same kind of forgiveness and strength, through your shared kindness of your time

If you’ve been distant or mad at someone you once loved, reach out to them tomorrow and tell them all is forgiven; trust me all will be made better and your heart will be filled with the love and grace of eternal forgiveness

Peace be with all of you this Easter Sunday

I once sold a home elevator to a very famous evangelical in the south who upon the arrival of his elevator told me that God told him not to comply with our contractual agreement. Now for the betterment of my Ma-maw’s heart, I will not say who this evangelical was but I will tell you that as soon as he felt so spiritually-guided to let me know that my twenty-seven year old being had not a clue how God’s contract with me, should I choose to listen, would tell me to give him (the pastor) his money back; even though I was out over ten thousand dollars for this god-servicer’s new home elevator that had just arrived to his home.

Needless to say my facehookers, once anyone brings up the man upstairs in a money conversation, I am always reminded of what my non-religious grandmother Nonnie use to say,

“Shellsteinavinsky, if anyone ever brings up money and the baby Jesus in the same voice, do me a favor, run like the wind and always know they are up to no good”

My Open Letter to Weston Wamp

Dear Mr. Wamp,

My name is Michele Peterson and we’ve never met.

Yet, for the last few years I have been steadily watching your coming of age political story and listening to your generational messages.

As an entrepreneur I like to think of myself as progressive; I also am so very proud to call myself a Chattanoogan.

No matter where I am in my country, I find myself bringing Chattanooga with me. Constantly talking and bragging about the richness of culture and business found here, and talking about the wonderful people, the beautiful not-so-far-away mountain trails and the eclectic mix of traditional values with a subversive downtown cultural flair.

And although my soul-home is reverently Johnson City, Tn, alongside my vernacular and my Appalachian good sense, my business savvy was sparked and is still being honed by the generational impressiveness of entrepreneurial knowledge and friendship, of and with past Chattanoogans, both male and female, both black and white.

After all, very few mid-size cities can brag about being one of the first southern cities to integrate its police force, well before any other cities even contemplated this notion. All while a Knoxville Jewish newspaper transplant is reporting on this prophetically-wonderful coming of age integration city police story, having only a half century beforehand been given his own entrepreneurial publishing opportunity by a local Presbyterian financier.

And back in the sixties when women were not even being considered for many leadership roles, let alone publisher positions, this same local newspaper was being led by this printers devil’s granddaughter.

Funny enough Weston, at times Chattanooga might still represent all that is wrong about the “good ole boy south”, yet our region has demonstrated time and time again that no one can really ever judge a book by its cover, not even Walter Cronkite.

I, like you, was heavily influenced by the presence of hard work all around me as a young person. Whether by watching my government-employed mother or my entrepreneurial independent truck driver father get up every morning to make my fifty foot by hundred and forty foot lot on Rolling Hills Drive a better place (both in deed and in measure), so I might be watered just enough to go out and make my world a better place; or by watching my grandmothers pour their hearts and souls into my generationally-infused, ever growing tachometer.

I, like you I surmise, was expected to go and do good things for other folks. And I try to respect all my generations in hopes my impartial and impactful examples will develop through me, rather than against me.

I remember running into your father many times over, on the Atlanta plane mostly, as he made his way back and forth from Washington DC; and he always struck me as a hard-worker; someone who if given a chance to do something is going to try to do it right and give it his all.

I have a lot of respect for these intentionally placed values.

I also remember the first and only letter I wrote your father several years back when he made the very generational-congressional decision to come out of the homophobic political-religious cash register in favor of the notion that all gay folks are going to Hell; a distinctly, but not necessarily needed exclamation on his part in this mostly all-male, elder dominated, Republican Third Congressional District.

Because after all, we live where God, Country, College Football and Guns (not necessarily in this pecking order) are just a part of everyday speak and everyday declaration-ism, and if you’re not more kin to Rhett Butler than Ashley Wilkes; well, you’re not quite up to snuff.

In your best efforts you just fell for the oldest trick in the book, overreaching for the sake of fear-grouping and intolerance.

And although in your heart of hearts you knew the Rick Sanatorium endorsement wouldn’t help you get the young cross-over voters you needed to win your republican primary, you decided to let your generational powers-that-be talk you into this very isolating decision anyways.

I also remember seeing you on TV several years ago and wondering to myself what kind of leader you might be called to be, especially on the social fabric issues of our current day?

Wondering if the “absolutist’s vision” of your father’s past might be placed in your political cash register? Wondering if you might think the hot button social issues of the day are worthy of so much attention by our country’s legislature (a notion I talked about in my letter to your father). And wondering if you too might follow in the direction of religious, non-inclusive, defensive sensationalism in order to corral fear, money and voters?

Constitutional rights, whether right or wrong, must be led and started with a judicial, yet somewhat turbid, estuary. Not led by common tribalistic tendencies but rather a fundamental knowledge of process. Thomas Jefferson knew this, I’m just not sure you understand why and how he knew it?

In other words, sometimes we lose and sometimes we win and as long as the game is played with intellectual-intention and non-emotional, non-monetized character then even if you lose, by simply not trying to win at all costs, you actually win. Then we all become better winners, losers and leaders in the end. A notion held intrinsic to our country’s very survival and established by the two most important founding fathers we have, Adams and Jefferson.

I suspect also a notion held by you, that is, until you decided to let your fear of loss so dictate your judgement that you recorded a not-needed-to-win reaffirmation of Pa-Paw Mayfield’s endorsement intentions. A decision, in my mind, cost you your primary.

Now we will see what kind of leader you are made out to be…

With Earnest Regards,

Michele Peterson

“A Work in Progress Citizen”

The biggest threat we have in our country is not Al Qaeda or ISIS

The biggest threat we have in our country is not Al Qaeda or ISIS

The biggest threat we have in our country is ignorance

Ignorant folks are more likely to be manipulated and controlled via emotion and fear

Teach your children about Jesus and the power of forgiveness and prayer, but also teach your children about Shakespeare too.

One without the other might lead your children to believe in unbridled intolerance, which is exactly what Jesus wouldn’t have wanted

All I’m saying this morning is culture and education can be as effective a tool of reverence as sports and religion. These things need not be mutually exclusive of one another in order to have a wonderful life …..

Urban Lawn review of American Sniper.

Lawd help me if any of you want to fight me over my review as I cannot lie, I’m tired today. But if I delay and let my opinion of Clint Eastwood’s movie brain deflate, then I might not properly exhale, and if I do not sigh properly, this might cause some of you to believe me unpatriotic

So Here goes,

I first read about Chris Kyle a few years ago when a writer at the New Yorker wrote about Chris’s story. Needless to say I was moved by Chris’s story but not because of the obvious or what you might think

Funny enough Chris Kyle’s story came out right after my Texas sales guy Jamie had just walked into a vicious, murderous crime scene filled with the slaughtering of his two neighbors who lived next door to him right outside of Austin, Tx.

I have written about this story many times on Facebook and have told about the significance of Jamie’s heroism over the last few years as he himself has gone through a twisted version of Iraqi War PTSD.

“Their eyes, their eyes”, was a constant conversation I had with Jamie over his 2013-2014 year, as Jamie’s brain began to process the brutality and gore he had witnessed and later realized he had survived.

You see, Jamie’s Texas veteran PTSD predator had wanted Jamie there the night he shot both his parents over forty-two times, but luckily Jamie got a last minute call from a Houston builder who needed him to come by his jobsite and he couldn’t wait another minute

So unbeknownst to Jamie at the time of the call, this last minute builder’s call definitely saved Jamie’s life. Had Jamie not gotten the call, and not cancelled dinner plans with his neighbor-friends, then he would have been sitting with his friend’s son as the Iraqi war veteran opened fire on his entire family. A fact my buddy Jamie has had many mixed feelings about and many sweaty guilt-ridden nights over

“If only I’d been there, if only I’d been there, maybe I could’ve stopped him from going to get his guns, or maybe I could’ve grabbed his gun or maybe this or maybe that”, is still a conversation my sales buddy and I have shortly after we’ve finished our fourth or fifth beer

I guess the way I can sum up the way I felt leaving the theater last night was emotional, sad, moved and overwhelmed.

So many lives were effected by bad leadership in our country, on both sides of the political aisle and I will never vote for anyone who voted for the Iraq war, Hillary Clinton included.

I told my brother back in 2003 our country was making a horrible foreign policy miscalculation and there was going to be a lot of generational injuries and casualties

At the time I thought Iraq would be like Vietnam, the only difference; generational economic frustration and control would be replaced with exploited patriotism and glory.

One need look no further than the Pat Tillman documentary about military brand exploitation of Mr. Tillman’s death and service by all of our leaders to understand we are living in an era of unbridled fear and political greed driven by an over abundance of marketable absolutism

Clint Eastwood, Bradley Copper and I are no different than the countless patriots who came out on bridges and overpasses to salute Mr. Kyle for his service. I think this movie based on Chris Kyle’s well-marketed, over-blown, self-aggrandizing book that labels him as the baddest mofo to be born in Texas, second only to Davy Crockett, all while forgetting Davy Crockett was born in Tennessee and not in Texas, is simply what it is meant to be, a good movie. To make it something else seems unpatriotic in some way

I did however find that the movie made me feel guilty for not standing on bridges and overpasses for the countless PTSD veterans like Eddie Ray Routh, who killed Chris Kyle; not because I think Eddie was right to kill Chris, but because there is always a fine line between love and war. My Daddy always told me sports is ninety percent above the shoulders, so is war I suspect; and unfortunately for most of us our current plastic republicans and bank-owned democrats have lost sight of this since 9/11

I think I will donate to Eddie Ray Routh’s defense fund, in hopes he might not receive the death penalty in Texas, not because I don’t believe in the death penalty but because sometimes we must not act out of sheer emotional reason

I also plan to write Eddie’s family and thank them for their son’s military service. Explaining to them that I believe all military men and women deserve the same acknowledgment for their service, especially in times of war, regardless of whether I believe the war was right or wrong; and although their son’s body came back in one piece from Iraq, clearly his mind did not. A message I think had Chris Kyle lived another twenty years, he himself might be proud of me for sending.

I believe when you make heroes out of some men and villains out of others, based on unequivocal ideology, you actually degrade and decay humanity, patriotism and faith.

My take on the movie is that it was very moving and I got my money’s worth, but if I were being honest, I really hope those of you who flocked to see this film will also find your way to net flicks and Tommy Lee Jone’s Iraq PTSD flick called “In the Valley of Elah”.

It might not be as awe struck and crutch grabbing inspirational but it definitely to me is more of a patriotic masterpiece

Th Bi-Lo Game

Alphabet Bitches

Alphabet Bitches

Alphabet Bitches

Was playing on his IPhone as I touched the father wheeling his kids around the Bi-Lo earlier today

“Buddy that just isn’t appropriate music to be playing out loud in the Bi-Lo”, I say to a young father wheeling his three boys around the Bi-Lo a few minutes ago

Only to find a Blank stare looking back at me as though someone just interrupted his Bi-Lo sponsored concert, and he’s relatively unhappy about it

“You see my young friend this is not the place you wanna have your Alphabet Bitch concert while other moms and dads, daughters and kids like yours are just walking around. I suspect most of the folks in here feel the way I do but no ones gonna tell you straight up like me, cause you know why, cause they all don’t know how reasonable a fell you are and they all think all you’re gonna do is tell me to duck off and then shoot me”, I look up at him as though he knows I’m not in my right mind cause I can’t stop blinking and signal thinking about who his mama is and I reiterate that if his mama were here he’s gotta ask himself how’d she feel about her grand-babies listening to alphabet bitches in the Bi-Lo

“What the fuck is you talking about bitch, these ain’t even my kids and I don’t know what your problem is!!!”, my new young friend says to me as the three little boys scrabble together inside their nascar grocery cart

“These aren’t your kids, these three little boys aren’t your kids, well then alright buddy I feel you, you aints got no skin in the game then, and their mamas gave them to you and said do whatever, whenever and however you need to do, but keep them outta my house! Well if that’s the case then I understand truly I do buddy, but listen, here’s the skinny just so you know ….although you thinking your ass is cool riding around the grocery store playing alphabet bitches, and trust me buddy, I feel you. I know you just trying to show these little homies here what it’s like to be sportin the load even at the Bi-Lo and that young fellas gots to have his bass on, even in the fake car at the Bi-Lo, but you see player, that kind of language aired publicly just isn’t  doing you any good and for darn sure it ain’t doing these kids no good, so why don’t you just take these fancy apple ear plugs I went to my truck and got you just so you can listen to your music while the kids listen to mine”, and as I hand over my come-with-my-iPhone box earplugs and I turn on Super Why on my phone for the kids

Now some of you might think it wrong of me to approach a young fella surfing his Cars cart around the Bi-Lo playing Alphabet Bitches while carting around three children under the age of eight, but frankly I just can’t not seem to stop myself these days, and trust me I understand why folks don’t say anything anymore, but it’s just gotten to me since I fell off the wagon of keeping my mouth shut regardless of the implied impertinence on my end.

Also I felt pretty secure since there was a for-hire sheriff just around the corner

But all I kept thinking the entire time I stood in front of my alphabet bitches dude is how are things ever gonna improve if folks like me wanna help folks like him and yet I can’t even begin to explain the ABC’s of the absolute absurdity and selfishness of his very public actions without any acknowledged significance to himself  

Explanation Point Needed Immediately! Part 3

For as long as I can remember I have been myself for better and for worse, yet everyone around me seems to think the only difference between the two is my use of the word and.

I for one do not, nor do I ever plan to, believe life, liberty, livery and me can ever just be about the word and. Unless of course you were born one of the lucky ones. And even then I’m not quite sure I believe you to be all that lucky anymore.

Inherited wealth and generated wealth are like parasites and a host, without generational love, respect and regard, neither can truly live for very long, nor really, are they suppose to here in ‘Merica; and intellect without perspective is like wonderful food served with stale conversation, it spoils everything

Intellectual thought cannot be one that is found only in universities and academia, however, at the current vamping pace of non-intellectual existence I see courting the airwaves in which most Congressmen speak these days, and a few Republican pastors shout, “The end in near, watch out for the queers!” I can see why most of us are running towards the tall grass seeking non-voting shelter; for fear one of the plastic-enlightened might portend to dismiss us as intellectual elitist’s, within by just calling someone this phrase you are both insulting their character by rewarding their intellect.

I am here to tell you now, plastic republicans and bank-owned democrats irritate the piss out of me, and if I find myself choosing between a Bush and a Clinton in 2016, I might rather vote for a squirrel named Nuts.

And on another point, I’m not sure at what point I decided there seemed something wrong with my City government’s married status quo of public policy meets singularity discourtesy, but the inherent viewpoint that government-sponsored  companionship must be defined via sexual activity, dependency and intercourse livability, which therefore must enhance employment opportunities based on this kind of love, seems on some levels to be downright stupid at times

The first time I ever expressed my opinion about my City’s partner subject was the day I read the almost insidious, yet genuinely thought-out first grade notion, as to how the City of Chattanooga might determine a partner’s benefits viability; based once again, like our small minded federal government, on the cohabitation of sex meets partnership must be dependent, by rewarding the employer-to-emoloyee recognition benefit’s meter

This so-called, “definition of partner by City dependency, same sex couples partnership amendment benefits program in Chattanooga” once again somehow legitimizes love and commitment through the existence of sex, dependency and cohabitation, without regard for good ole wholesome companionship and non-residing care, seems the very definition of an antiquated version of the twentieth century family to me.

The “Plus One Initiative”  as I called it when I wrote my letter to my City’s mayor explaining to him, if I were a single employee of the City, I might feel left out and cordoned off from the affirmation of love and company I have to give, regardless of sexual activity, selfishness or residing residential commitment or not; and how I know federal standards of employment supersede his ability to reach much further than what he thinks he is allowed, yet reminding our Mayor that law school for many can definitely keep the ping pong in the air for hours, sometimes one must step on his own ball, lest we all get cricks in our neck

Sex and love, love and sex, dependency and non dependents; I wonder at what point we as a society will begin to untangle these generational family attachés mixed with co-bhabitation, generational tithing and civil service warrants meets a citizen’s constitutional right of singularity?

Will US singledom need to hit sixty-five percent before the law takes note of these rising tides?

Married or not, individuality meets the family of your choosing, is the current recipe being talked about in most major cities these days, but like most things, it’s those without telescopes and far too many with stern-mounted binoculars that confine themselves to conventional thought and wisdom for the sake of retrieval and the reprisal of snarkiest before thoughtfulness leads all of us to failure and fatigue.

Explanation Point Needed Immediately! Part 2

I often return to Churchill and Roosevelt when needing to understand where we are as a society and where we are headed as economic decay of monetary distribution is before us, yet hardly anyone has the spectacles to see it.

I suspect not even Benjamin Graham nor Dr. Yellen can come up with enough monetary syrup to avoid such happenings

Although our individuality is preordained to deny such an absurd accusation, my thought is one of antidote verses poison, and rather our choice between cure and remedy that is likely to sequester our current  disease of politics right now

In my good opinion most financial ailments cannot come via a cure anymore, but rather a vaccine or remediation; and yet the only vaccine I can come up with that might break up these politically concocted economic tumors, made up of republicans and democrats, is the remedy of ignorance meets fraud, onset by an understanding of marketing and lack of privacy.

Yet, almost noone understands what I am talking about nor do they care anymore.

Because just like most cancers that inflict suffering, our global marketplace cancer is made up of financial collusion and inherently bad government interference and bipartisan rhetoric.  Remembering the very nature of most cancers is not the existence of it but rather the size and rapid spread of it.

Here is Churchill describing the aborigines of Pakistan and the understanding of relevance verses reverence

“Every influence, every motive, that provokes the spirit of murder among men, impels these mountaineers to deeds of treachery and violence. The strong aboriginal propensity to kill, inherent in all human beings, has in these valleys been preserved in unexampled strength and vigour. That religion, which above all others was founded and propagated by the sword–the tenets and principles of which are instinct with incentives to slaughter and which in three continents has produced fighting breeds of men–stimulates a wild and merciless fanaticism.”

You see when companies become the size of governments they are not containable by any measure of government, made by the people or not. Hence the uprising everywhere else in the world by regional tyrants who are no longer being utilized and paid, but rather, strategically isolated by these same companies that pay governments to protect them from the generational deals they have made. One need only look at the compartmentalizations of gangs currently putting a blight on economic stamina and growth in Chattanooga to understand the very nature of what I am talking about.

The collusion and utilization of poor people, whose leaders use religion and the affiliation of affliction as shovels rather than tools, should also foretell and warn us of the gravity of our situation, both near and far.

Religion and politics is like lightening meeting a snake. One never knows if the snake will live or die if hit by lightening, and yet the snake always seems to want to throw his rod in the air for safe-keeping. I guess whether or not lightening strikes are good or bad depends on the perception of who is creating the lightening in the first place.

It should also come as no surprise to anyone that the abundance of in-fighting between tribes and citizens is no different than our forefathers understanding of economic imprisonment by both.

One just need look at the gross revenues of the top ten biggest companies in the world to see what I am talking about, then add their revenues together and see what you come up with, keeping in mind some of these companies have created legal departments and financial resources bigger than the US DOJ, via law firms all over the world, but more importantly here within the states.

At this point the perception of competition and the existence of legal collusion work hand in hand to continue the all too successful mask of perspective-rouge; what won’t hurt them will definitely kill them, yet better them than us, is often the sentiment of the fallen embattled entrepreneur or legal doctor who has lost all hope in trying; gratuitous cancer of greed has set in like cancer cells in our bodies, and tribal fear is metastasizing quicker than most of us can keep up with these days, or even want to try. Either way these very sentiments lead to a loose-lost scenario, a sort of victorious quagmire made up of divide and conquer, while putting our minds on emotion filled steroids instead of thoughtful strategy

What always strikes me as funny is the rate of delusion good folks like you and me find ourselves  withstanding when excuses rely so heavily on the paradigm financial acumen of, “it just is, what it is”. Lest we forget almost all of us were poor and exploited prior to WW1, and it is only our expiration date of thought that keeps us from returning to that impoverished existence, unless of course perception meets reality and tall grass can be found.

War is the only thing Republicans and Democrats can be found agreeing on these days, and yet I have always heard war as political strategy only gets us more preachers and graveyards, two things I’m not sure we need more of these days….

“Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt

To be continued