Gypsy’s Story: My First Impression of the Act

Dear readers,

It might not surprise you that I’m writing this. I watched a Dr. Phil podcast regarding Gypsy Rose Blanchard, the young woman who is now being held in prison for her mother’s murder. Well, honestly, I could have been in the same boat as Gypsy if it weren’t for a few things: common sense, the client assistance program, and of course, support from blind orgs at the time. Gypsy may not have been blind, but I had some inkling that my parents used the guardianship as a poor excuse to continue the Munchausen by Proxy crap that a late band friend had picked up on. The late Marie Mannigan picked up on the Munchausen before I could say go, and if it weren’t for her, I would not have figured I’d have to not call my parents as often as I should. I now live in Colorado with a loving significant other, and Gypsy is in prison, but our stories are almost alike. Almost, but there are still a few stark differences.

 

  1. Gypsy was born non disabled, normal, and what we’d now understand to an abusive mother. The father was okay, and he was cool. but the mother? Well, she was a piece of work.
  2. Gypsy used a feeding tube, I did not.
  3. Gypsy had a long list of fake medical ailments, but mine was primarily caused by a parental abuse situation. My mother wasn’t willing to take a disabled adult, and she slapped me in the face, and I told her off for slapping me in the face. Gypsy would probably not be that brave.
  4. Gypsy wasn’t in psych ward, but I was.
  5. Gypsy was told she couldn’t have a long list of food and rinks, but for me, it was a long list of people I couldn’t be with, especially black and Hispanic peoples because they were different, and my parents refused to let me go to prom unless I had a patriarchal escort. Boo to this.
  6. Gypsy was emotionally abused as I was.
  7. Gypsy was taken advantage of in the thousands and millions of dollars, and DD, or Claudine Blancharde actually used that disability she faked to her advantage. She had Habitat for Humanity build her and Gypsy a home, all without the construction requirement it seems. I don’t know if DD actually did do the sweat equity, but that clearly isn’t fair.
  8. For me, my parents seem to have done some therapy shopping, finding a therapist who would force their daughter to accept control, period. In Gypsy’s case, it was doctors. DD went shopping for doctors who would cut Gypsy’s salivary glands out because DD didn’t want Gypsy tasting food. Ugh, I’d like to if I could punch DD in the nut holes but someone did it for me. One, you do not ever go doctor shopping if there’s 100% nothing wrong with your child. Blindness is also not a crutch to find other things wrong with your child either.
  9. Gypsy walked and ate behind her mother’s back. Serves the mother right. I watched Joey King walk and eat as Gypsy behind her mother, Patricia Arket’s, back. It was amazing, and Joey King does some pretty good acting if you might know. Gypsy and I both did the things our parents said we absolutely couldn’t and shouldn’t do. Gypsy also couldn’t date and couldn’t have a boyfriend, but now look what happened. She’s got Ken, and Ken loves her to the moon and back. I have Trenton, and Trenton loves me to the moon and back. We both triumphed over things, but in two very different ways. Gypsy had to go to jail because of her mother’s murder, but I’d go to jail too if it meant that my parents absolutely had to be killed because of their guardianship. I wanted freedom, total freedom to do what I wanted and marry and buy a house like other adults, and my parents totally made up the mental health and PDD and autism issues I supposedly had but didn’t. Munchausen by proxy is a very serious illness, so here’s what I would do to spot it.

First and foremost, think about the medical things the parents are telling, especially to you doctors out there. If a parent over exaggerates medical issues, it’s probably something to investigate. Talk to your child patient, your young adult patient as well. If the patient’s mother doesn’t want you to, odds are something is wrong. Do not tell a blind patient or truly disabled patient that a parent must be in the room with them. The parent must be out and out of sight, out of mind during all appointments. Make sure that you as a treatment provider explain to the patient’s guardian, caregiver, or parent that you are a medical expert, someone who’s been to school for 8-12 years, done residency and other types of work to specialize in the care you give. Make sure the parent knows that you will see the patient, and if the parent does not wish for you to talk to the patient, that it is the doctor’s obligation to look into the situation. The system must help the patient, not the other way around. Munchausen by proxy is a dangerous condition, and in Gypsy’s case, DD had to die because of her lies. Who else would have died? Why, Gypsy of course, she would have been cut up and torn to pieces by that woman if not for her own brain that fought and flew from her mother. This should not have to happen. Dr. Phil would say that there would be no excuse for parents to act this way toward their children, and he is a father of two grown adult sons. They’re successful in their own way.

For doctors experiencing problems with Munchausen by proxy patients, first follow some of the steps above, and if it gets worse,

  1. Take a deep breath, be mindful of the patient’s situation. Keep your med school materials handy, and if possible, do your homework.
  2. Call the police or if possible, adult or child protective services.
  3. Show the social workers all the medical records that the parent faked, this way you can keep the workers up to speed.
  4. Establish, if possible, a client centered practice with your patients, especially if they’re able to voice what’s going on. However, if a patient is nonverbal, make sure you learn your ASL and sign language of some sort so you can tell the patient what’s up.
  5. What happens if the mother tries to consult surgeons? If a mother or father tries to do anything, whether it’s amputation without necessity or removal of a body part without first being consulted themselves, warn the surgeon of what is happening. Again, call adult or child services and alert them with medical records, and see if they’ll investigate.
  6. If you must, record the appointments, and if you have a transcriptionist or med secretary, make sure all this is recorded on paper so you have access to the evidence. Turn it over to child and family services if this gets any more out of hand.

Social workers may be bombarded if anything with calls like this, so below are some steps for social workers. I may not be a social worker, but as a victim, these steps are very important.

 

  1. First, listen to the caller and take down any information you can, as you might have been taught before.
  2. While an interview happens, insist that the perp not be present in the house or proximity or you will have them arrested. Come up with something creative to separate the perpetrator suspect from the victim. Talk to your victim.
  3. Ask yourself, while talking to your victim, does your guardian/caregiver let you in on any of the medical symptomology you have or the victim has? Does the doctor insist on talking to the victim? What does your caregiver or guardian think when you do basic things like eating, dating, or even bathing yourself? Ask questions, get answers as much as you would like to.
  4. Make sure when you leave the interview, you put this as a priority, depending on whether the victim’s life is in jeopardy. If their quality of life is at stake, make sure the stakes are higher for the guardian or caregiver so that they know they cannot doctor shop, remove body parts, or worse, lobotomize, or therapist shop in my case. Brainwashing is a common problem with ableist parasitic guardians or caregivers. Watch for the signs of brainwashing. They include a two different things that you see in the victim. The victim might respond differently with their caregiver around than the times they’re alone. This is surefire brainwashing.

If you are like me and you’re a victim of Munchausen by proxy, make sure you know what is happening to you before it’s too late. My best advice is, do your homework. If you feel you’re not autistic, PDD, or allergic to something, tell your caregiver, and if they do not let you use a digital means to do your work, call a social services hotline immediately and report them for Munchausen by proxy. This might be a hard decision to make, but it’s your life we’re talking about.

I wish Gypsy had had access to this information before she went haywire and her mother found dead in the house. This might have been what DD needed to see, and she might have been put in jail for medical abuse/neglect if not for this information.

Beth

A correction and a few things about my Apartment Building versus a House

Dear Readers,

I’d like to do a couple things. First, a correction. Karim Abu Zaid is not actually Somali, but a large portion of his congregants are Somali Muslims, and the Somali population of Denver is the third largest in the country. Karim is actually Egyptian, so I goofed on one posting about religious orgs, and why they’re unsafe. I deeply apologize for any goof ups I’ve done regarding who’s what.

Now, to the meat and potatoes. Let’s talk about why my apartment building sucks:

  1. Notices on the door are in print, not Braille. And not emailed, which I could easily have copied into a txt msg to my PCP at the company I use for personal household stuff, and that email should be proof enough of what’s going on now. There is a special planned power outage for two hours. Ugh. I’m done with this cutting power and water crap, and the notices were not hung at a time when the PCP could read them.
  2. You’re pretty much at the mercy of the landlords saying that they don’t want to email or Braille notices for blind individuals because of fair Housing. Bullshit. That kind of behavior is unacceptable and is a violation of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1970 to 1974 or something along those lines, and blind people need extra support in reading because print is not our primary medium. Got it?
  3. Bedbugs are a major reason why I got assistance and it’s ruined everything. I’ve also been targeted because of blindness in the housing project, and though the landlady is okay, doesn’t outwardly abuse any of her tenants, she seriously has to think about what violates the ADA and Section 504. See above.
  4. There’s not enough space for a studio and microphones will not be placed in an echoey room. Echoes can be heard from our living room, so I continuously argue with my man Trenton about the possibility of my new MIDI controller being in that room. It is not practical because I want to do vocals, period. And the keyboard will be too big for the bedroom, and we don’t have a row house with a basement, period. The row house would have more spaces, a large living room, and yes, more carpets and a possible few more mods we can make to the office space so I could place my microphones and such in there. Period.

Now, here’s what I would like in a neighborhood, especially if we decide to go the house route.

 

  1. Walking or bussing distance to all things, including grocery stores, convenience stores, or sundry stores. And there has to be a bus stop within a quarter of a mile so that Access A Ride eligibility is no issue.
  2. The house itself would not have interconnected or central power and electricity, and we could modify our lightbulbs and door the way we want to. If I had it my way, the door would be operated on August or other smart locking equipment so that only certain people like Trenton’s mom, a PCP, and other things would be allowed into the house. I mean other people, of course.
  3. The row house has to have a neighborhood school located about five miles or if within two miles, there has to be a safe and easy walking path because I’m not walking my child alone to school. If the school is over two miles away, the child or children will absolutely need to take the bus or city bus to school because I can’t drive them anywhere.
  4. The house has to be affordable under a government program and some of our bills will have to be paid by the government because we can’t get jobs, period. I’ve been told repeatedly by Rehab that this and that doesn’t work for me, and I am mad as Hell about it. But I have musical skills, and can learn softwares pretty fast if you ask me. I do plan to play with Garage Band at some point. My buddy Clayton, now known as Blind Guerrilla will probably end up teaching me how to turn my keyboard into a musical pad for recording instrumental crap.
  5. With that said, the job I might have to do won’t bring a steady income and that’s to be expected. I can’t expect a steady job with a steady pay rate at all because of Rehab and the problems this country has with blind women being rebel rousers, so there you go. I thought of monetizing this blog, but it is a bad choice because who is reading this blog anyway? I write here, and nobody reads. I am no echo, so people, read my damn blog.
  6. As for the row house, we would have more control over the heat, over the electricity, and not have to worry about the water being turned off unless God forbid we hired a plumber. Jimmy Carter started this Habitat for Humanity thing, but we’re not sure we can handle this stuff. HFH requires sweat equity, some sort of construction work, and other things that are absolutely not safe for … let’s say I was pregnant already. I want the house built before I get pregnant and can’t work, besides I’d lose the baby doing the construction work. Who hires pregnant women for such jobs? I have no idea, but driving a forklift is out of the question.
  7. IF we get a row house or town house or something, I hope it’s at least two or three bedrooms on the top and bottom, the bottom one being the master suite. This way, we can do what we must and keep the kid rooms separate, and with this ghastly building we’re in, we can’t have babies in here. Children are not allowed here, so if I got pregnant, guess what? Legal eviction. Ugh. So this is what I’d like to do. I’d like to talk to someone so Trenton and I don’t get separated and we need insurance so we don’t have to sleep at his mother’s condominium which is also in cramped quarters. The apartment building will likely have people not wanting us here after a baby arrives. Ugh.

Yes, the most important things in a house or shelter are more important for me as a blind woman who wants to keep the family together, and moreover, I want to be able to do something normal for a change and not have a guardian hover over my medical tests and charts. Period.

Anyway, I might have to see what the guardianship does at the end of October, and I don’t know what the ruling will be till January.

Beth

My Thoughts On the Joker and Halloween Things

Dear readers,

This is a very important topic for me, as I have been treated and diagnosed with mental health problems before, but these mental health problems are, and I will iterate this carefully, they are not a costume to be worn, joked about, or made fun of in any way. Let me tell you guys, I’m okay with the Joker, only in one way: that Batman throws him back into the Asylum, where he belongs, after all he is probably in need of treatment as much as the next guy. If you’re wondering what costumes are appropriate for yourself, your loved one, your child, look below.

 

  1. There is a wide variety of princess costumes and yes, even guys could wear this. Put something on a wheelchair and it becomes a princess carriage. I’m not kidding. Target has special costumes for kids in wheelchairs, so now you can accessorize your wheelchair bound child and their chair itself. It’s something I might not have seen in my youth, but it works.
  2. The usual princess and pirate thing might not work for everyone, so try dressing up as an occupation you’d like to be instead. For example, if you’re a Catholic person interested in the religious life, you could go old school with your Halloween party and say dress up as a favorite saint, a nun, or your own patron saint. Or even more, if you’re a guy interested in being a priest or something, you could dress up as either a priest or a favorite saint, given that the sacramental garments are sacred and can’t truly be worn outside church. Priests in my life did not do this, but still. If I asked someone if they wanted to be a judge, they could dress up as one too. Be whatever you’d like to be.
  3. Food costumes are popular these days. I had a girlfriend dress up as … you wouldn’t believe this, but spaghetti and meatballs, and forget the cheese. Cheese and meatballs make spaghetti all the more better, but dressing up as a favorite dish is something comical and fun. If you want to be a chocolate bar, wear something brown. Chocolate is brown, am I right? Or you could dress up as Skittles, M&M’s, or anything else you like that’s sweet and tasty. You’ll make everybody laugh and start a conversation.
  4. DIY costumes that make fun of every spam email you’ve received are a favorite of mine, though I never tried it myself. I’d really like to see what people think of someone dressed as something called The Spam Monster. All you need to do is save up a month’s worth of junk email, a piece of masking tape to write something on, and you must wear black or white under the paper you’re going to tape on yourself. With Scotch tape, make a little vest or shirt with your junk emails, and the things on the email, the writing should show so people get a glimpse of what the hell is going on in your mind. Next, put the shirt or robe or little vest over your black or dark or white clothes, then put the masking tape on your forehead. Write the word INBOX in big bold lettering on your forehead masking tape. This will surely start a conversation.
  5. Then there’s the usual monsters, or you could try objects of horror. Such things might include vampires, ghosts, and zombies. If you’re doing a zombie walk, do one if you find it. I know Denver had a Zombie Crawl for a while. Denver’s Zombie crawl is just one such thing, but there are plenty of zombie crawls to be attended. I’m not so much a fan of zombies as I am more a fan of The Mummy, and I could throw in my costume the Princess Amanet, who recently made an appearance in the recent The Mummy installment. I like Amanet because she really doesn’t think guys should simply take from women, and in ancient Egypt, women did not have as much say as men, not till Queen Hatshepsut came around and said, okay, I will rule in my own name. Her stepson was the heir to the throne at one time, but I think Amanet has quite a character built on some things and not others. I could scare the living crap out of people by dressing as Amanet before she was mummified, minus the dagger. What I need is really ancient dressing and some form of headgear, plus the golden beard of the Egyptian Queen. And makeup, and then, voila. That’s just another idea of throwing princesses and horror in the same category.
  6. You could dress up as an item, something that doesn’t get eaten. For example, dress up as something like dishwashers or a dustpan, a broom or something else. If your hair is thick and straight, and you don’t know what to do, dress as a broom. It might work, provided you don’t get put on your head and used to sweep the floor.
  7. Celestial bodies and creatures of the celestial type are also another thing you could try. Dressing up as a star or even an entire unearthly planet might work. You could try even dressing up as aliens from a science fiction franchise, Star Wars anyone? Or Dr. Who or Star Trek. Those are all good choices for science fiction and celestial stuff. You could also dress up as mythical creatures in nature. Unicorns, anyone?

These are the things that might interest you, your child, or your other loved ones. But please steer clear of dressing up as blind people, deaf people, and I don’t think it is a good idea to dress as Donald Trump either, even if his political leanings are good somehow. Trump doesn’t get it. He doesn’t deserve to be a Halloween costume, and dressing up as a favorite movie character might suit you best in this case. Don’t use hate symbols, and Hitler is out of the question for costuming. I will never dress even as Magda Goebbels, as she was practically the wife of the right hand asshole who practically ruined Germany in the 1940s, and sacrificed one of her family members because she hated him. She used to be a Friedlander, but no, I don’t know how she could have married a top dog Nazi commando. So yeah, I would never dress as her for Halloween.

However, if I were to choose a costume, I would choose a person who actually did good things. Try Joan of Arc, for instance. Yes, she might have had a mental health thing too, but Joan was a saint, and nobody back then could prove otherwise. She was burned at the stake for being a witch, which today is just ridiculous. St. Joan of Arc actually freed France from English rule, thank Goodness. I admire Joan’s courage, but still, there are others.

I could also dress as Athena the Greek Goddess of Athens, wisdom, and so much more. Athena sounds like a really good goddess, either her or Artemis, goddess of the hunt. I could choose others, but if I chose Artemis, someone on my Facebook might kill me because she has a cat by that name. Oh well, but I do love Artemis, and her image is in a book called The Immortals, which is the first series book in this collection called Olympus Bound. I personally can’t wait for the next Olympus Bound book to come out, but still I love Greek Goddeesses. I could also try another character from a book or movie franchise I like. Those are just a few things I like about Halloween, being free to express yourself within reason.

So what are you going to be for Halloween? Try to come up with something good, something scary fun, or something laughable or something neat. Comment here, and I’ll see what I can do at some point.

Beth

China: The Land of Censorship

Dear Readers,

I’d like to bring something to your absolute attention. If you’re planning an international getaway, and I don’t know how many of you are planning an international getaway to Hawaii or some other country outside of the U.S. border, there’s something you should know. China is out of my list of favorite places I’d like to visit. Here are the reasons why, by list. Not in any particular order, I might add.

 

  1. China is ruled by the same model of government proposed by Chairman Mao Te Sung, and it’s a Communist Big Brother style government that hates all of the below things I’m about to discuss.
  2. China, in all its beauty, still has censorship issues. For instance, it hates blind people who make a fool of the government, like Mr. Chen Guang-Sheng. You need to use a VPN to find any of the real deal about him in China. He escaped because he could not get freedom and justice as a blind man in China. Also, the Tiananmen Square Massacre and other subversive, or seemingly subversive crap has been wiped off the Internet. The Great Wall of Internet Censorship is in place, and all Chinese computing machines come installed, last I checked, with Green Dam Youth Escort software, malware in my opinion. This is no trick of the light, it’s real.
  3. China is reeducating its Uyghurs who are Muslims, all in an effort to supposedly “fight Terrorism.” But if the Uyghur population does not want to be reeducated, then by God don’t do that. They are Muslims, and they are responsible for taking Jihad out of the picture. Let them handle their own affairs, but don’t sit there and make me believe that the kindergarten classes are going to spout “I Love My Motherland” and not commit a suicide bombing tomorrow. I’m not suggesting the Uyghurs are Terrorists, but the whole idea of suicide bombings and martyrdom operations is right there in the Qur’an, but it’s up to them to decide whether to be peaceable about it and aggregate the peaceful verses over what Ayaan Hirsi Ali calls the “sword verses” or better, the “Medina verses” that are considered violent in nature. Uyghurs are a lost people, but not worth reeducating people to adore a regime, and they will fight back and get the government in lots of UN trouble indeed.
  4. China is complacent in dog meat distribution. I’d rather have American Chinese General Tao’s Chicken rather than the damn dog meat they are complacent in distributing in some establishments. When the Olympics came to Beijing, they sure knew how to put on a mask. There was a whole article that said the dog meat would not be served to foreign or native peoples in China especially when foreigners will be all over Beijing, but face this fact, people. I’m a dog lover, not a dog eater. I wouldn’t eat my dog even if you put a gun to my head and killed the dog for me, and told me to do it. Just … don’t.
  5. China hates blind people and makes up ableist excuses for itself when blind people are discriminated against. Chinese people are supposed to be friendly and gentle at all times, but do they get bigger social ratings for discriminating against disabled Chinese and foreigners alike? If I read another nightmarish account of Chinese officials telling someone they can’t see the Great Wall with friends, they should know that I won’t be going to see the Great Wall no matter how many times a friend might say, “Oh, Beth, you should see the Great Wall of China.” Now don’t get me wrong, food in China and dumplings are wonderful treats to have every so often, but I’ll pass on the going to China, having my stuff stolen and censored, and having to deal with the lack of history and the glory of the precious Chairman Mao style government, even with its capitalist aspects.
  6. China won’t let American tech companies be themselves, even when Hong Kong is mentioned. China has a lot of work to do in regards to respecting American tech companies and their freedom to partner or not with China. Yes, the country boasts a huge population, but is it worth partnering with China because of the things I described above? Mark Zuckerberg, Tim Cook, and other tech execs should reconsider selling things and their services to China and Chinese national government peoples because of the Uyghur reeducation camps, the harassment of the Uyghurs, and so much of what I describe above. I think American tech and gaming companies should never partner with countries that discriminate against disabled people, are complacent in political cruelty as I’ll describe below, and puts people at risk of being harmed in factories and reeducation camps in general.
  7. China hates Tibetan freedoms. What will happen to Braille Without Borders over there? I hope it’s not going anywhere, but China might think to tear down the school for the blind, and they have every reason to believe the Tibetans should overtly adore the regime. Education should include critical thinking skills, something the Chinese schools lack completely. And the weird thing is, as with radicalization in islam, there is already a weird system of family association in place in the Chinese culture that allows this. And girls … let me describe this too.
  8. Girls are often given up to wealthy white couples. Example, Susan Brees and her husband adopted little Maya Lyn from China, which cost them thousands of dollars, and Maya’s first year was spent bound up in a Chinese orphanage, all because she was a girl. First off, her mother had to give her up because of the then strict single child policy, which the Chinese government has since probably relaxed, but this would apply in crowded cities. Lots of girls in Shanghai are aborted too, so the boys born there will not have good mates to couple with when they get older. Mrs. Brees’s adoption was just one of thousands if not millions of girls’ adoptions that takes place in China. There is a long and arduous process, which Brees described to her class in an early year of my youth. I was in the sixth grade, and Mrs. Brees was my math/science/homeroom teacher. She described the process of adopting a child from China, and then the problems could arise later on in Maya’s life. Thankfully, Brees will have told her now grown daughter about China and what she must do to do the right thing and do her own thing, it can be said she probably did. Maya is somewhere out there, and so are so many others, and there’s another example. A Chinese born blind child was adopted by a family in Minnesota, and he’s lucky he was adopted at the age of four. Little Ben Han is now learning to play piano, learning to exercise his skills in intellect, but moreover, he will have a thorough education in critical thinking and other good things, things that the Chinese simply will never get. He will learn about Chen Guang-Cheng, if he should choose to read his book. Ben will learn about the Tiananmen Square Massacre, and he will also learn about the region of Hong Kong and the protests happening now, which leads me to the next point. But more importantly, Ben will have an opinion and be brave and proud as an American citizen, and no, his mom and dad will assuredly not let him cause trouble. Wink wink. Children, especially boys in my experience, are mischievous and can raise hell if they want, but they can be fun as well.
  9. China lacks compassion for Democratic values, and Hong Kong is on everybody’s mind. I feel bad for my friend Ming Chung, resident of Hong Kong, and I hope he is safe. He should be able to talk to me if he wants, and his Facebook Messenger page still waves at mine but the time might come when a malware program will disable Chung’s ability to message me, the government’s server will interfere, and Mr. Chung will be put out to pasture. He currently works in Hong Kong, but will this last? If Beijing interferes with the region, there will be loads of problems.
  10. Social credit is a joke. Let’s imagine if Maya was in China, had been accepted by her family and not forced to leave. She would have either been told to be a good Chinese citizen or get the hell out. As a Chinese citizen, she would have never gotten the critical thinking skills Mrs. Brees so carefully taught her students at St. Teresa’s School. But furthermore, the social credit system would have caught up to the poor girl. If she gets bad ratings, who would marry her? The way it’s set up now, China rates its people from poor to excellent depending on how loyal to the Mao Big Brother the citizens are. It appears the Communist/Capitalist hybrid government seems to work, but for how long before it starts making more million man armies against us? We Americans have a lot of work to do with China in order for it to be a viable trade partner.

Those are just ten things in detail that are wrong with the region of China. China might I add, in any case, won’t let me adopt little boys like Ben, little girls like Maya was, and so on and so forth. The government bans blind parents from adopting, and even in Korea, and other parts of Asia, blindness is a factor in discriminating against potential parents. I have a friend in California and she and her husband have no choice but to adopt from the domestic foster system here at home. At least we protect blind parents, and we see value in them, not devalue them for their disabilities. The girl wants to be a mom, but she knows what she needs to do in order to get there. Her husband is kind and sensitive, not things a man is expected to be these days. My husband-to-be is very supportive of any decision either I make or we discuss. But in China, there are worse cases where I could never marry, get a real job outside of massage and have a family. There was a blind woman I read an article about in a magazine once who said her parents had signed her up to go to Australia, but she was told no because of her blindness. She was forced to take low jobs at a massage hospital of the blind, and it is no surprise there. The government does not particularly want to protect the rights and life of a blind tourist or national alike. I think tech executives should read this carefully, and consider whether partnering with Chinese companies who work with the government or selling to that market when the government is snooping on what those items contain is appropriate or proper. IF I get banned from China, who gives a flying two bits? I’ll wear that ban as a badge of honor, courage, and something more because I’m blind, angry, and sick of ableist countries doing dirty things to blind people, taking our jobs and giving them to sighted people, taking our right to be tourists and hang out with friends, taking our right to adopt, and so much more. I would be willing to do the process if China’s holier than Mao government would please open its doors and let me adopt from there. And please, no snooping on this blog unless you’re a Hon Kong pro Democratic person with a VPN. Then and only then can I extoll what it is truly like as a blind person in the United States. As for an international getaway, try Germany, England, Scotland, Wales, Australia, New Zealand, and so many other places who tolerate difference and so on. If anything, I’d rather New Zealand give me the chance to express myself if I was tourist there, but if I became a citizen there, I would be dying in gratitude. Why? Because well, Jonathan, if you’re reading this, and I’m talking Jonathan Mosen, imagine there’s no countries. I need to read his book. I want to read his books and study more of what he thinks of patents, censors, and other crazy American ideas. I speak as an American looking through the lens of a foreigner. If a lot of international people were sitting in a room with me this moment, I’d ask, “So what do you think of us?” I’d guess they’d rather marvel at the plenty of food we have here in the U.S.A., and they would say, boy, things are different, but the British international tourists might be a bit caught off guard about the road system here. “Why do you drive on the right side of the road?” I honestly would prefer some British terminology and styles, like there’s a uniform for everything in Britain, and England particularly. And I’d love a cup of tea and cakes, but not the biggest tea fan. God, I don’t know what else to say. But on the other side of the road, well, I just hope the British learn when they visit here how to drive on the correct side of the road. We have a lot of crazy drivers in this country, and I speak from experience being the passenger in cars where people screamed at people on the road, “Drive the car!!!!!! Get where you should be and drive the car!!!!!!” Thank you to my friends in Denver for this one.

But anyway, if you’re planning an international getaway, please, stay away from China and some parts of Asia. You’d be glad you did.

Beth