New Books Allow People with Dementia the Ability to Continue to Reading
— Read on alzheimersspeaks.wordpress.com/2018/12/25/allowing-people-with-dementia-the-ability-to-continue-to-read/
Check out this episode of the Disability Visibility Project. I will cover justice reform in a later post.
Ep 41: Deaf in Prison
I’ve made some changes to the blog title as well as the tagline. When I first began blogging a few years back, a lot has changed, and the blog itself evolved. I became more aware of what I was doing, and thanks to Trenton, I changed both title and tagline to reflect the progress I’ve made in the area of reason, which some people don’t get. I write frequently about disability equality and access because I am speaking from experience as a blind person. As a blind activist, I want to speak firmly, owning the word “queen”, which some of you might have taken in a bad way. Well, here’s the thing: the Queen is back with a brand new tagline and title, and here’s a rule. Trolling has been a problem, especially with Felicia Nicole involved with the recent scandalous content she tried to show the world, and showing the world that a monster is nice isn’t so good. I tried to be nice to Jason, but he turned into a monster. I didn’t create that, he did on his own by abusing girls, getting girls pregnant when they clearly couldn’t carry his baby, and by making up lies and deestroying people’s good names. I have not ever tried to destroy someone’s good name because once you harass and defile a woman, you’ve already lost your reputation, not the other way around. Not the woman you defiled, to say the least. I’ve exposed guardianship fraud, exposed Florida’s hypocrisy, reviewed books, and educated many people on the real people with mental illness that live and work among us. I myself have dealt with misdiagnosis with Autism and cognitive impairment, resulting in an improperly administered guardianship, which again, I exposed. I am all about bringing things out in the open because we can’t hide stuff under the rug anymore.
Above all, the tagline I am using demonstrates not only that disabled people need equal rights, but that reason should prevail in education as well. I have to take a page from my buddy Tyler McKinney, who is not quite Irish by the way, but he hates what he calls belief in the supernatural, and calls many of the followers of supernatural forces “parasites” multiple times in his Facebook page. However, I’d encourage you to look at what Mr. McKinney has to say about how people have misused God in all the wrong things. I’ve exposed churches for their corruption and inability to include, and I am going to suggest that disabled people find another way to grow in a spiritual journey that doesn’t include a badly built concrete box, unfriendly congregation and leadership, and misinformation about disability and sex. I’ve often exposed sex education in schools, and will further explore why abstinance only until marriage programs don’t quite work especially for people with a disabling condition. There are websites out there, but not enough healthy information about sex and disability exists. Do people think we’re not equal enough to have and do sex? Well, read on.
The most recent thing I’ve decided to take on is a series of posts about drugs and why people do them. I will continue the series after this, I promise. Please feel free to read past posts as I have to inform you all that so many things you could miss. The exposure of evil and the righting of wrongs is the end goal in my life, and I’d like to thank every one of you for being a reader of the blog.
I’m not going to emphasize too much hr. Brian Crosby did it for me. He already wrote that inner city schools are most often associated with prisons, something that must change. I have to agree with most of what he wrote, except for one thing. If you cut special education, especially that of blind children, you will have a bigger illiteracy crisis than you already have with blind children today. Today, 90% of the blind children in schools are illiterate, don’t get Braille services until later in life, or never learn to read functionally. It is best practice to start Braille instruction at the same time as a sighted child, which to me means as early as possible.
The focus of this post, however, is a huge problem that circulates among the poor that includes the peddling of drugs, and only one of a few ways to stop it. While the United States outsources to India and China, cheap labor options that lave a lot of minorities out, there is no way any CEO of any company would do apprenticeships in the States, but that’s what we must do in order to get drug peddlers and dealers to stop what they’re doing, throw away the drugs, and earn an honest living.
Take rapper B.Mob. He sold dope by the night, as it says in his mix tape, the song, “My Story”, and his family was heavily involved in gang activity. First off, the gang activity I think is a direct result of oppressive Texas laws and de facto segregationist policies having to do with housing, job opportunities and other things. B.Mob is just one example of many people, blind or otherwise, that would benefit from real vocational education. While Texas School for the Blind was unable to curb the dope seller’s desire to make money and try to help his family, they of the school thought juvenile detention was the best place. However, since B.Mob is nonviolent to my knowledge, I see no problem with alternatives to incarceration.
The only way that the Bloods and Crips will ever cease fighting and doing bad things to others could involve alternatives to juvenile detention, which is not fun and does not offer post prison vocational programs most of the time. Rehabilitating criminals should be foremost on Texas’s agenda, but like most Conservative states, weed being illegal makes it harder for people such as B.Mob to make an honest living. Being like most rappers, African American, he might face further discrimination in job applications because of his nonviolent rap sheet. He has not killed anyone, so why discriminate? My impression of him is that he seems to be a cool person, and I don’t see any violence about him. So why Texas won’t offer a vocational post detention program is beyond me.
Placing nonviolent offenders in house arrest for a short time is costly to the offender, so I think we need to keep nonviolent people out of jail, period. While juveniles who sexually offend should have probation, some detention, and therapy, I don’t think anyone should lock teenagers up, no matter how violent they are, but we should be focusing on getting these guys “bright” as B.Mob puts it. Getting these guys a proper education that doesn’t include races textbooks is a must.
There’s one more element to education that my friend Chenelle Hancock and I discussed earlier on Facebook. Independent lingual education should start early.
Chenelle’s Language Learning Podcast is a place for people to talk about their independent studies of languages like French, German, Arabic, Urdu, and many more. Norwegian is tough, at least to me, but believe me it can be done. Chenelle is proof that schools aren’t always where the language hits the tongue. For one thing, I would love to study French or German, both languages highly important if you venture off to Switzerland. Not that I’m interested, but some people have Swiss bank accounts. Chenelle said that when schools teach languages, oftentimes the students don’t retain the language. So what can be done? I think independent study while the student is busy at work might be a solution. While working, for instance, on an apprenticeship machinist program in the States, imagine you are studying German and French so you can work with Dymler-Chrysler executives in Germany. While learning the languages, people also learn the culture of the German and French workplaces, corporate manners, etc. Brian Crosby mentioned a teenager now working at E.J. Ajax and Sons and getting paid internships and such things as that. Crosby says this guy is on his way to owning a house, but that was back in 2008. So the guy is probably a homeowner by now.
Any kind of vocational choice should be given first and foremost to persons with disabling conditions. If a minority student has CP, don’t expect them to go into manufacturing jobs that require heavy lifting. Here’s another thing. Blind people should not be expected to drive or operate mobile machinery such as cars, planes, and boats. Instead, offer a blind student in a school, especially a minority student who does not excel at scholarly work, an alternative to college that pays. The sweatshops don’t count as jobs because of their failure to pay minimum and living wages. Blind students should have the same access to apprenticeship jobs and internships as their sighted peers, and same with other disabled students. Intellectually disabled students should try manufacturing, but remember, these jobs must have good working conditions. The job must pay the worker a fair and living wage, so the intellectually disabled person can live in their own home, pay their own way with caregiving tasks, or learn to cook and socialize themselves. The key thing here is we need to end the oppressive policies in education for minority students. This means that African Americans should be allowed to run the gamut from scholar to apprentice no matter what.
Take an African American student in a place where cosmetology is in high demand. Girl or boy, they can still learn to cut hair, braid it, or style nails and hair however the customer wants. This is a very important job for many a hairstylist, nail artist, or pedicurist. I think apprenticeships and beauty schools should extend to high school so that by the time these kiddos graduate, they will get paid. This would serve a service oriented economy better than nothing at all.
While culinary programs are popular, food preparation classes are often closed to disabled people. I say, open the floodgates to blind and visually impaired as well as other disabled students. Take J.J. Duran, a local girl in Colorado who attended a cooking class in middle school. She had a lot of fighting to do to convince the teachers that cooking was in her capacity. It is in mine, but I wish I’d had more time in school to learn this practical art.
The only thing I wish I had done right in school was find a vocation that paid. Titusville has no vocations for blind folks, and vending stand operations are a null and void profession in that area. A bagger at a grocery store is not a useful career to me because it’s only a starting point, and many other job sites won’t hire because of liability or preference of a college degree, too much money.
Here’s another idea for making jobs accessible. Take away college payments. Make college free. Just as public education is free, make college free. University degrees should be free, but the same work applies. IF you want to be a teacher, you shouldn’t have to go into debt or deal with disability offices who don’t want to work with you. So in the best interest of all, make it free. Trump University is a scam, and there are people who would shoot someone to get a legitimate college degree. I think making college free will cut down on the number of fake degrees purchased. I don’t want to purchase a fake degree for less money and work. I want to work hard, but having to pay to go to school is a waste. College textbook purchases should also be lowered in price or free to students. Or rather, let students independently study without a book because textbooks are a real ripoff. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sold back books, but the purchase price was heavy. I will never buy another college book in my life ever again.
License tests are a big problem. For public k-12 education, standard core curriculum should be thrown away. Replace it with project based arts education, language learning in two way immersion programs, and economically sound apprentice programs for nonscholarly youth. For those who aren’t going to college, give them a chance to go to business school. Free business courses should be offered, and a business plan should be used to help students understand licensure, copyright, limited liability companies, corporations, and all the in and out of businesses. Business ownership and franchising should be included in the course curriculum.
While Colorado has a legal way to grow weed, I’m all for a course on growing cannabis and tending crops. If I had the land, a house, a greenhouse, all that, I’d grow hemp. No kidding. I would grow hemp and weed for medicinal purposes. I’d call it the Royal Medicinal Plant Company, and I’d start at the bottom tear, with an LLC. Everybody in Colorado wants weed, so why not grow it? My plants would not contain THC, but would be similar in scope to Charlotte’s Web. This is named for a small girl called Charlotte Figgy, who had many disabling seizures before she started using the oils from the plant that bears her name. I would love to grow some web plants myself, and other medicinals and herbs that help with health and other ailments. Of course, I’d do my homework to see which plants do what, what chemicals should be in plants, scientific research and everything. Maybe I should grow marijuana plants that help with back issues, anxiety, pain in your stomach, all kinds of stuff.
That brings me to another point. Make weed legal. The federal government had a racial motivation behind illegal marijuana grows. Now, we must admit that not a single death has been attributed to pure marijuana. I’d rather see high people all relaxed than drunk angry people any day. High people are easier to talk to, but they must track things a bit harder. Still, they don’t get angry as easily, which is why rapper Esoteric Quality uses weed to calm down. He has a medical card, so he gets his weed from dispensaries. I would rather get weed from a good dispensary or I’d open my own cannabis shop. The business is competitive and booming. But I might be able to help the businesses another way if I can’t learn to be a bud tender. Tending the buds might be a good economical opportunity for me here in Colorado, but weed being illegal in the federal sense makes it harder. If the federal government legalizes marijuana, race aside, then jobs will open up. I don’t call marijuana dope, but if we regulate and legalize it here in the States, imagine how the violence would almost certainly cease a bit more, economical opportunities would become vast, and the scope of jobs would have a better and longer list for folks with disabilities.
Think about this.
Educating people about the uses of medicinals might have a good impact on the bud tender and his or her job. Medicinal weed must be allowed in all places, federal funding or not. There is no need to discriminate because most weed users would probably get pretty angry and high about that. African Americans are disproportionately sentenced to jail simply for use of weed. Colorado has erased all convictions of marijuana possession because now the recreational pot industry is here, and it’s growing.
Education is key, and knowledge is power. But there’s more to the story. What if your teenager or relative does heroin? Crack? Cocaine? We must offer nonviolent offenders a chance to get out, and I’ll talk about how to best handle nonviolent crimes without crowding jails. While justice reform is in the news, I think it should be a priority. African Americans and those of Hispanic descent are disproportionately representative of the prison population, and gangs of white people operate behind bars. Please, if you think jail is a need for these inmates, think again. We also must stop getting tough on crime, and spend more money on rehabilitating hardened offenders, not all out punishing them, but it will take a major social attitude adjustment. Bring me the hammer.
Imagine yourself at work. Okay, that’s about 80% of you reading this. Think for a moment what your paycheck looks like. How much do you earn? If you’re a teenage African American or Latino person, how much do you earn? What are the perks of being an employee at your company? What are the drawbacks?
As a woman with disabilities, I see many benefits for hiring disabled, but hiring is just the tip of the iceberg. We must pay people a living wage. $7.25 per hour is not an appealing wage for a young girl starting out in school, nor for a young boy struggling to do well in school and yet being oppressed by teaching personnel and principals. $10 is an improvement for a living wage, but I can see where $15 is needed.
Many teens and young adults find that peddling drugs on the street, though dangerous, pays much more and gives them a shot at what they think is the American dream. This could mean home ownership, a mansion like what El Chapo owned, or worse, jailtime. A lot of these disenfranchised populations see drug peddling as a way to get ahead, and it does seem to work when the system pulls in front of them and makes them fall behind.
So what can we do to fix this? It’s not a simple and easy answer, but raising minimum wage and offering perks to minimum wagers is a must. $15 is a living minimum I will accept personally as a potential employee. I also want healthcare benefits for the disabled, maternity benefits for new moms, etc., no questions or high premiums. Deductibles for healthcare are a big mess, and I can cover those details on healthcare later.
Hiring disabled individuals and those who are disenfranchised due to race or language can be a huge leap into a forward position for many companies, but certain occupations should require speaking of the English language. No offense to Latinos, Somalis, and other immigrant groups, but if I moved to your country or something prompted me to do so, I’d learn Spanish or French or Somali dialect or whatever, not the other way around. Therefore, I would encourage immigrants to get their language skills up because believe you me, it gets frustrated when a care worker at my house doesn’t speak my language and I don’t speak theirs. I had fill ins who spoke no English whatsoever, but those who did speak it were more likely to get something from me, something called reciprocity. ENglish being the world’s trade language, I think it is very fair if immigrants learn English. Hey, Deq did it, so did his brother and a friend in the clans they translated for. So why can’t the millions of Spanish or other language speaking folks do it? English, as some of you may know, is essential in driving too. Yes, I know this may sound off putting, but I’ll cover education in English later. Language skills should be an absolute requirement because of the big issues driers may face. Drivers who run into cars and cause an accident with a vehicle carrying a disabled passenger should be told to look where they’re going, but they don’t. Had the driver I was with at one time had zero English skills, and he had minimal, I would have had to explain things to the police that the driver should hav been responsible for. What if I couldn’t speak? The Iraqi who was driving the car would have probably faced an angry Beth who would have come to, and if I was dead, I would hope that he’d pay my burial costs.
For another thing, English skills should never be minimal. Deq studied hard, and because his English is not minimal, he can get more out of his work as an interpreter. Here’s another thing: even if you know the language of drug dealers, honest work will give you healthcare you can trust.
Paying good people more money should also be the case for schoolteachers. I have friends who I can probably never count who teach school in places like Bradenton in Florida and even Titusville, where I went to school. Teachers don’t get paid much more than $30 per hour they work, and never get much of a raise unless the Cost of Living Adjustment goes up dramatically as it has twice. Teachers like my friend Kaitlin put lots and lots of time and effort into shaping young minds, but if she chose to, she could get upward mobility in the drug dealing trade. I’m not saying she ever would choose such a life, but Kaitlin is a very intelligent person who should be getting paid $150,000 a year. No, she’s no $0.99 teacher. She’s what Brian Crosby would call “the $150,000 teacher.” She and many schoolteachers should receive upward mobility. Many others should as well, but the big thing is we should be paying good teachers more. Good teachers like my friend Kristen who teaches chorus at a high school should be paid oodles of dough for the kind of work they do. Kristen’s choruses have earned superiors across the board, not unlike the retired chorus master Thomas P. Davis, but Davis retired with not much more than what he earned when he first started. Brian Crosby’s book Smart Kids, Bad Schools details how much any schoolteacher should be paid and who should get more. Kristen and Kaitlin should get certain amounts of pay based on the stress level. Call it what Crosby terms “combat pay.” Yes, it is like combat pay, but Kristen’s pay should be slightly higher than Kaitlin’s because Kristen deals with … think about it. Raging hormones, teen boys fighting, and any high school she teaches at would have to have a plan in place in case of another Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School shooting rampage. Kristen would have to be among the army of teachers protecting students, unarmed. Kaitlin’s school environment really isn’t as stressful, but all jobs have some level of stress.
While paying good working people more money than drug dealers sounds like a farce, it isn’t at all. I would like to earn $100,000 a year one of these days because that’s how much I’d need to have repairs done on house or condo, live in a decent space in a decent suburban community, and my children of the future should be getting a proper education. No inner city school can match this level of expectation, and I would not want my kids selling weed by the night and being a student by day.
If my child graduates high school, I would like him/her to earn as much as they want, no gender based pay holding them back. I want to earn 100% of what my fiancee would earn, and that’s not entitlement. I want to be treated equal to my fiancee before the law, and that may mean a bit more protection from rape and assault as well as fair pay for equal work. I don’t have all the energy to earn $7.25 at a call center that doesn’t pay what must be done and paid for, and believe me, a worker has more to worry about.
A blind worker typically must provide their own transportation, and frequently that may mean paratransit or bus service. Paratransit buses and public buses however could mean safety issues for women with disabilities. Therefore, Lyft or Uber may be good alternatives. They do add up, however, and a low wage call center job is not worth having if good transit is not found, and if special rules must be in place to protect women with disabilities.
Small wonder drug dealers earn more, and are attracted to peddling drugs on the street.
The next post I’ll do is probably going to be a very important one. It has to do with education, so you’ll really want to see it.
You hear the sound of your telephone, cellular or land line, ringing in the night. You pick it up, and the next thing you hear is the following message from a guy or a gal with a foreign sounding accent, “This is the IRS. We have a warrant out for your arrest, and you owe $5000 in back taxes.” THe next thing you ask is, what?
This is one such example of a job that is dishonest, taking place in Mumbai, the slums in which lay call centers run and operated by criminal gangs who steal and prey on desperate Americans and Canadians and especially taxpaying citizens of both countries. Now, imagine why these people have dishonest jobs. India’s economy is not an open and quick running system like, for example, Hong Kong. Want an example? John Stossel did something weird but fun, an experiment if you will, in Hong Kong versus India. John opened a business selling hats with his name on it, and the business was opened in just thirty minutes in Hong Kong, which seems to be a diversity and commerce friendly place. India, however, requires loads and mounds of paperwork, and most of India’s city dwellers may end up in slums. While there are a lot of honest workers in India’s call center boom, there are just as many of the bad guys.
Now, why did I mention India and call centers there? Because the United States could fall in that direction. For one, a business must be licensed, but not everybody has the money to take a business course. Drug dealers don’t need a business textbook to tell them how much net profit they earn from drug dealing itself, trade in prostitutes, etc. This breaks my heart as well as some of you all. But let’s reel back to the big problem: white people want to oppress minorities.
Ever since the African trans-Atlantic slave trade’s ban in the 1800s, we’ve had a huge problem with hat to do with the people the Caucasian descendants decided to steal from their rightful homelands. The descendants of displaced and likewise enslaved populations have been subjected to isolationist policies and forced to work for low pay or no pay at all. Let’s see what we can do when we’re faced with these conditions.
When you’re frequently told to sit at the back of buses, arrested for doing daily activities wites do, and told to cut off your dreads, there seems no end in sight to the oppressive policies whites place on blacks and browns. However, some do make it through. Take my fiancé’s mom for instance.
She went to an opportunity school in which she took office related courses, clerical work studies, and so much more. She went on to work for DPS (Denver Public Schools) for years on end, then was let go. However, she is looking for alternative jobs that pay better. I applaud Nathalia or her hard work and continued wanting to work, but there aren’t enough Nathalias out there.
Take the woman in Dope who was selling drugs with El Capitan in Oakland, California. Ambrosia was a black lady who was pretty intimidating to look at, if you ask me, and she lives her life constantly on the run. What was Ambrosia’s school like? Nobody knows, but if I have it right, she might have been oppressed, out of jobs, not allowed to apply for so many places. With Silicon Valley overrun with white rabbits and males who want to taunt women like Ambrosia, she might have not been able to find honest work enough. Her family might have been poor or downtrodden in some other way. This is how drug dealers are born.
What about Joaquin Guzman? His work with the drug cartel he operated for years until his imprisonment was probably borne of poverty and less opportunity in his home country of Mexico. El Chapo, as he was and is best known as, was responsible for not only the drugs, but murderous action, prostitutes, etc. I have a legal prostitution proposal I’ll deal with in another post. Mr. Guzman should have taken school more seriously. He should never have done drugs or the Cina Loa drug cartel. It would have been better for his twin daughters, who will almost certainly never see their father alive or in lockup. Is this fair?
Most of the drug dealers and peddlers I met in the series Dope were African Americans, but Latinos and other immigrants are responsible in part for this problem as well. Not all Latinos mind you do this, but there is a good population that believe we Americanos, and I’m speaking from their point of view, but they believe we’re the enemy and some have become sort of a Robin Hood. Yes, I believe in Robin Hood’s agenda, take from the rich and give to the poor. But not by criminal means should any Hispanic, black, or even white person act on this sort of agenda. I didn’t know there was, for instance, a patron saint of drug traffickers. There is one in Mexico, and two of the bosses were seen praising him in his mausoleum in Dope’s third episode, season 1.
Well, if the patron saint of honest workers were to have risen suddenly from the dead, maybe the minority and immigrant groups would get a leg up. Let’s take a hispanic and profile his honest work history.
Jesus (Jessie) Hernandez, a spunky guy with a sense of humor, works hard every day for the money. No, he doesn’t deal or peddle like so many predecessors, but he works honestly as a booking agent at a hotel chain in Miami, Florida. Little Havana and other such sections in Miami are expensive to live in, but Jessie’s family is highly educated, and yes, Jessie is blind. We’re friends, and it has been an honor to have a friend like him because his sense of humor is always present wherever he goes. Jessie’s work history includes working with schools and children in the special education sector. Now, what do the stories of Nathalia and Jessie show us? That people can find honest work, but there just aren’t enough Jessies or Nathalias out there.
Sometimes schools don’t believe enough in the right policies, something you might find in another post. However, lack of honest work in places where drugs abound is a problem. Baltimore, Maryland for instance, does have a significant black and brown population, but law enforcement got off for killing Freddie Grey, so I am not sure how the black population is trusting law enforcement now.
Law enforcement isn’t the only problem Baltimore has. There is poverty, and oppression in other places, but Baltimore has a serious problem with opioids and dealership of such drugs. Healthcare will be covered later. Honest work should be taught to the special populations like those of my friends I’ve profiled.
Now, let’s see what can be done to solve the problem of dishonest workplaces and drug peddling at the hilt.
First and foremost, we must be race and disability blind when hiring. Jessie got lucky because his job applications and interview process was flawless and smooth, and he was given better opportunities and family support for the job application and history he needed to submit. He got his feet wet, and assuming anything else went good, he was able to put his blindness in a good light. Because of his bilingual skills in speaking both English and Spanish, he certainly is an asset to any company who will hire him because in places like Miami, Los Angeles, and more now in Denver, Dallas, and Phoenix, Jessie’s language skills will be needed to communicate important information to immigrant populations seeking a refuge or vacation time in the United States. The same could be said of my ex, Deq, who is a Somali born interpreter for the immigrant community who are seeking asylum, refuge, or going to visit relatives.
Interpreting could be a vast opening for immigrant groups such as Hispanics, Africans, and Asians who do not speak English as their first language, but if they are given plenty of practice with English skills, they could interpret for folks. This could be a huge leap of faith for most people, but it never always is. I’ll cover schools later, but one way to open the translation sector for people is to open two way immersion programs in schools. For example, in a Miami school, you could learn English, sure, but Spanish instruction in science and health might be prescribed, and imagine this breeding friendship and familiarity instead of contempt. While the white folks in private schools are reciting El Padre Nuestro in Spanish class, to me this is meaningless, there was still a load of English in all other classes. But if we went to a Miami school in my mind, we might see a lot of Hispanic Americans learning English, French, and German classes. But it goes further. The two way immersion programs will give these children practice with the new languages they’re picking up. Perhaps all Americans should do two way immersion and learn languages as a means of opening doors so they can interpret. I confess Spanish was a strong point for me in school, but face it, my skill with that language has gone out the window. IF I had two way immersion and support with it, I could say I’m bilingual to a company and they’d hook me up with Spanish people to talk with, and I could pick up where some might not. Representatives in sales and retail, honest work, will need bilingual education in order to really get practice with their skill, selling a product. ANd that’s what’s in demand.
So the big question bugging you might be the following: then what to do with the black population? Again, we need to give them the same opportunities as the white and other populations. Bilingual education and good job training are important, and places like Emily Griffith Opportunity School are a good start. You might see a black hygienist in a dentist’s office, a cosmetologist who’s Puerto Rican, and among other things, your sales rep could be someone who speaks four different languages. This is a huge issue in schools I’ll cover later.
So now you might ask, then what? Well, cliffhanger here. I’ll do that in another post.
Before I get into things, a quick update. Christmas has come and gone, and things are all right. Thing is not sure when we will be moving to a new apartment. Beta nightclub will be shuttering its windows and shutting its doors for good this January, so Ferry will be playing the church nightclub, but I don’t know what policies and good things await at that club, so I won’t be at that show then. Ferry is a great guy, but I’m a bit nervous about how the people at Church will treat me and my partner, both blind. Unfortunately, Heather also known as DJ Hey now knows about the beta closure.
Well, this is a big economic boon for downtown Denver. This kind of stuff is what makes the problem I’m about to talk about. It’s a four letter word we don’t want to be proud of: dope. I’m not kidding.
Now, what causes people to sell, use, or distribute drugs such as crack, smack, tar, whatever street language you can come up with for the drugs on the streets themselves? There are a few things I’m going to discuss in later posts, but here’s a summary of what is to come.
1. Lack of honest work. Places like India might sound like familiar ringing bells when I say lack of honest work. We in the U.S. have a unique problem. We outsource manufacturing, and in places where factories once stood, you now see druggies and drug dealers everywhere. Take a place like Detroit, Michigan. Detroit is America’s poorest city, and work there pays little. A mother in Detroit once told Oprah that she had to choose between feeding her children or the car payments she must make on her transport to work. Which paid next to nothing, and this was a single mom with kids.
2. And speaking of the lack of jobs, the other problem that goes with any honest work is lack of a living wage. Wages in the lower end of the job spectrum do not pay the American’s needs off, including things like rent, car insurance, health care premiums, existing healthcare needs due to preexisting conditions, medicine, and all the things you need for telecommuting combined. Low wages especially hurt women, disabled people, and minorities. Drug dealing is dangerous, but pays ten times more than the honest living wage that pays next to nothing, so no wonder minority groups such as Latinos, African Americans, and so on get attracted to drugs, and some white people do it too. However, the education system is another problem all on its own.
3. Education discriminates against minorities. If you’re a black woman, disabled or not, you would face more problems with schools in some areas than a white woman with disabilities. Black and white doesn’t always matter. However, disabilities and the ability to speak and write ENglish does in some capacity to the educators. Latinos and those who do not speak English as their first language are more prone to discrimination in the education system, and inner city schools, as research tells us, become dropout factories. I can see many of the big drug king pens probably were not very good influences in schools, and because they were oppressed, they wanted to get some revenge on the system that hates them so much. Take Joaquin Guzman, also known as El Chapo. He probably had a bad educational experience, but by running a drug cartel in Mexico, he got money, money, and more money. Mexico is a poorer area, and if their education and healthcare systems don’t get fixed, there might be more Cena Loa drug cartels, more El Chapos to take down, more people shipping drugs to our country. It’s an international issue as well.
4. People have a bad attitude toward those folks who use drugs to get over pain. ANd healthcare sucks here in the United States. Let’s just say I had back problems. I don’t but just pretend for a moment. If my hips were in pain, back broke, all that stuff, doctors now are prescribing opioids. These drugs could lead to addiction, and that’s where, according to research so countless I can’t give every link, 80% of addiction to painkillers happens. It starts with a doctor, ends with a fatal overdose of heroin and fentenel from places like China. Our healthcare should be discouraging the prescription of opioids. Take it from Isabela, a survivor of opioid addiction. She has been clean for a while now, and can live to tell you that these babies are bad for you. A doctor should prescribe natural painkillers that don’t contain addictive substances such as opium or any synthetic painkiller at that. Morphine drip is fine for some, but for addicts and potential folks who could become addicted to this stuff, it’s just plain stupid and could lead to a fatal overdose.
5. Beside the drug dealer blocks I noticed in the netflix docuseries Dope, I noticed that women were selling sex or themselves, selling sex with young girls, mainly their daughters. Drugs and sex selling seem more appealing if we don’t do the following things.
1. We must legalize with regulation the practice of prostitution, and cut supply to anyone who deals with underage girls. I’ll propose how to do this in another post.
2. Supervised injection sites for heroin addicts is a good thing, but we must give dealers an alternative to selling deadly crap. Mainly, we should give these guys honest work that exercises their intellectual capabilities, pay or their college, training, and other things. f we don’t, the inner city boys will think it grand to sell and distribute drugs right under the noses of law enforcement. This might not be easy, and it is dangerous work, but it can be done.
3. We must make all educational personnel race blind. Let’s take a black girl and a white girl and see what you get with a white teacher. The white girl might get a higher grade than the black girl, which could mean one thing: race relations. Again, this isn’t easy work to do, but it must be done. The black girl will be subjected to sexual assault, paddling, violence, and otherwise unnecessary disciplinary action in school same as others with disabilities. IF you’re a black minority with a disability, mainly all the minority groups represented in the U.S., you could face a 90% unemployment rate.
5. We must redefine the living wage and honest work and teach the golden rule more stringently with all students in public schools. Don’t take things that don’t belong to you, and say no to drugs aren’t enough. We must also teach integrity and etiquette in schools, something we’re not doing because of the diversity of cultures. Why not get out those old etiquette guides and start doing something? Kids who have better social training and have mentorships with various folks like the police are better off and won’t go to drugs and drug dealing. We must make it so unappealing at a very young age, and this might include stringent health classes and things about honesty. Honesty is the best policy, and working in scam call centers should not be encouraged, but like I said, lack of honest work does contribute to the system that puts crowds of minorities in jail, poverty, or on the streets selling illegal substances like crack and heroin. How can we possibly end this war on drugs? Not the way the law enforcement have been doing it, but we can change the way people feel about cops.
Mentorships such as the Bigs in Blue located in Texas will work wonders, but tactical and impractical moves like those in Oakland and Baltimore might not work because it creates mistrust in the minority populations. Almost all the drug dealers I saw in the first couple of episodes of Dope were African Americans, and there were names changed to protect the innocent and the guilty, of course, but the point is that drugs appeal to the minority population because we’ve set it up that way. It’s the fault of the white personnel in education who refuse to give a black child a chance to program his own app. It’s the fault of the white company executives who don’t want to hire a disabled black man or woman or transgender person because of fear, liability, and perpetual misconceptions about disability, race, and sexual orientation or identity. It’s the fault of President Trump, who allows migrants to die in border patrol custody. ANd doesn’t even look the way of Latino children who are disciplined unfairly for defending themselves in school, and are taunted in English, told to say they’re sorry for vomiting in class, among the things they’re punished for. It’s the fault f the government who lets Native Americans stay on badly maintained reservation lands where there could be awful amounts of drinking and drug use. We must solve this, and with good governing boards and bodies of politicians who actually care; with teachers, parents, and gang dropout counselors; with janitors, administrators, and many company executives. We must do what is right and hire disabled and minority folks before drugs overrun places like Denver, New York, Los Angeles. Please take a look at the Netflix docuseries entitled Dope, and you’ll see what I’m talking about.