It took a bit of processing to write this, but one man who commented on my post about my commitment ceremony suggested the worst possible outcome for myself and my fiancé. He said we should work at Goodwill. First and foremost, we need a meaningful living wage, and Goodwill cannot provide that because of a few things:
- It is a section 14c workplace environment. Colorado does not particularly like those, and the DVR of Colorado might have changed their tune about Bayaud Enterprises too, but both Goodwill and Bayaud employ severely disabled people for a little bit of money. We need a modest income to get a modest living arrangement, and a modest sum of money means a lot of that plus we need benefits to keep a family together. None of these things is available at Goodwill, not for blind and multiple disabilities clientele.
- Goodwill may lay off workers quicker than McDonald’s.
- Section 14c permits, in my opinion, the enslavement of disabled people because they are disabled. The National Federation of the Blind and the American Council of the Blind, and many other disability advocate groups besides, are all seeking to phase out this little piece of hell for disabled people.
As a blind and mentally traumatized woman, I’m not atypical among disabled females. Many disabled females are abused as children, some even molested as children. While childhood abuse and molestation are not direct reasons not to work, they are almost very hard to manage in adulthood. Imagine saying to your boss, “I need a couple hours because therapists want to see me.” You just have to be honest with your boss. If you have frequent doctor appointments, then what? This is why I don’t feel comfortable sharing some information with people about mentally ill symptoms and all. I don’t feel comfortable sharing information about why I should work, and there are reasons why I would work. Here they are:
- My kids would be in a modest house with a better neighborhood, safe from drugs and gangs, and I could afford to use the money to take them on vacation. With no money, SSI only, and no prospects for a job, the kids would never see a theme park vacation, Elitch’s or Elitch Gardens included. Any theme park vacation to me must include a modest amount of roller coaster rides, and there’s a little park in Lakewood, but it nickels and dimes you to death for tickets and how the hell am I to make sure that the tickets are well spent? Kids and families should not go without a road trip or some sort of vacation. Out of state vacations are important because then guess what the kids do? See next item, but they learn.
- More money equals better schools for the kids. I can’t imagine them in a dropout factory. I don’t have children, but a lot of the poorer areas of Denver may not have the resources to help a mixed race female let alone a male child who can’t read a book because “Mommy and daddy can’t see the print on my school assignments.” I want to see a club like Books and Bros here in Denver too, so that if I should have a little bro in my life, he can read books about his own people, study hard and be motivated to do well in school. However, even homeschool kids have to pay a huge sum of money to get books, crayons, pencils, the list goes on. I would prefer to be the one staying at home so the child can learn, not a strange nanny or eau pair who can’t figure out how to train a dragon much less a child. And a lot of times, you have to be careful with who you hire to do this work.
- Low income jobs means my kid or kids will go to care places, childcare or daycare which will or could take a toll on the children’s behavior should a traumatizing event happen to them. I’ve seen enough of the daycare worker headlines: toddler in daycare hanged by worker, for example. And there are times when daycare workers don’t do their jobs right, and who needs Care? The site, better known as care.com, is rife with problems. Consider it a Craig’s List for daycare provisions with children in mind. I would never want a child in the hands of a stranger, especially when the child is newly born and getting used to bonding with mom and dad. Daycare disrupts the bonding process, and if abuse occurs at any daycare facility, there’s a lot of stuff to blame.
- Many low income workers have cars, car insurance, gas, etc. Since we don’t have that kind of money to afford a car, forget it. We could never transport a child to school, daycare, or much less sick day appointments. How the hell does anyone expect us to take a bus with a car seat? Strollers must be folded prior to boarding, announces the Denver bus system for example. However, we could use a double handled stroller, one we can pull instead of push but then again, where to find it? Slings are important for a baby too, and toddlers should at the earliest stage learn to hold hands with an adult, any grownup for that matter so that safety and security are of importance. When they turn ten, we can quit holding hands with the child, making sure they walk about a foot away from us, maximum that is. But still, we need a way to transport the child to doctor visits, Grandma’s house, all kinds of things that children should be able to go to without issue. In this world of child abductions, human trafficking being somewhat the norm in Atlanta’s airport, I can’t take chances if I allow a child to run and play outside without my supervision. And if the child needs to go to school, I absolutely must find a school within walking distance, learn the route to the school, and take my kids or kid there every morning. There may not be a need for this if the school exhibits no interest in curbing bullying. More on this in the next item.
- Bullying is a big problem in schools these days. We would need to know by communicating only with a child or children if they’re being bullied. Anyone asked their child, “How is school?” Many parents often feel guilty if they know their child’s being bullied. What if the child becomes a bully? I don’t blame many parents, but sometimes when the child is bullied, the bully themselves are insecure and they don’t know what they’re dealing with. With females, I would have to see if she was raped in high school, especially when her fertility is at its peak time, between 12 and 25. Believe you me, I’ll have the whole sex with boys talk with her, but the big issue bugging me would be, if she comes out to the wrong person. If she told me, “Mom, I don’t like boys, I’m a lesbian.”, I’d be totally supportive, and I’d tell her about the Denver Women’s Chorus and all the Gala choruses out there, and she could end up with a nice female partner that would give her the same attention that a guy gives me right now. However, she could be bullied by girls and guys all saying things like, “Fag” and “Dike” and other things like that which could harm her. Same with a boy who wants to be a drag queen. I would support it, but what will society say? Thankfully, we have the Trevor project and Courage House in a state like Wisconsin. There are great places where the LGBTQI+ youth can find support and encouragement, but I personally want what’s best, and what’s best is letting them be who they are or wish to become. If my son said to me, “Mommy, this dress looks funny”, and I find him wearing my dress, I’d say, “Boy you look pretty flashy in that thing” but I’d never ever say anything like, “Take that off. You do look weird in that thing.” A bully might call my son a very mean slur or two, but I’d like to take the Michael approach. Michael Saddler, this guy who runs the whole show with RMAA (Rocky Mountain Arts Association) caught some guys redhanded calling him a name, and he said, “That’s Mr. Faggot to you.” I absolutely love this approach, and I’d encourage anyone who thinks that a bully can get the upper hand to somehow and in some way neutralize that. Alas, not all parents would be as supportive. Imagine what one parent might say if my daughter and I were sitting there, suppose I had a daughter and a son for instance, and the kids would say, “We went to Drag Queen Story hour.” Evangelicals among us would cringe. I cannot play with the haters, so what to do when a boy wants to be a drag queen? I’d say, let him. He should be a queen, if that’s what he wants to do. I mean, look at RuPaul. And his drag race is amazingly awesome and I’ve seen some good and bad clips from it. I prefer the bad clips because they’re funny to watch and stuff, but seeing guys like that inspires me to do what’s right by our next generation of drag queens. I say, boys, if you want to be a queen, or even a drag queen, go for it. The point here is that I want a safe environment where such a lifestyle is accepted.
In any case, I’d like to point you guys to some teachers who hate homosexuals, honestly the worst teachers I can find hate that sort of thing. As a gay person once said to me, you can’t really play nice with bigots. Even bisexual men and women will tell me the same thing. I would want my children of the future to learn about the history of being outside the supposed norms and understand that LGBTQI+ peoples are peoples too, just like all of us. And furthermore, I absolutely love the approaches that some men and women have developed in dealing with bullies, but then what happens when your child is bullied for being poor? The last thing I want to do is arrive home to find my kid hanging from the shower or ceiling or whatever. I’d scream that same way that my ex’s mom screamed when she found her son was gunned down by his then girlfriend, who later killed herself. It is widely rumored by my ex himself that it was done by a Henry rifle, otherwise he’d hear it himself. Guns are loud, but Henry rifles aren’t as loud, but they still make a sound. As it were, I would be pretty dizzy and I’d throw up if my own beloved ones were hanging in the shower, in the closet, or whatever. My child if he is gay or whatever, or if she’s lesbian, stands an 80% chance of suicide without my support, and in poverty, that support could come at a huge cost. IF I have a boy who wants to be a drag queen, I want that drag queen to be the best dressed drag queen in the nation. So what? If my child turns out to be a girl, and she wants to do what is good for her, I’m okay with that. I have friends who are supporters of transgender and gay girls and guys and nonconforming folks, and I wonder to myself, what if I had a child like that? Yes, it would at first be a shock, but I’d be prepared. I have a huge wide circle of adults who are gay/lesbian, transgender and intersex etc that would be willing to lend a hand to my future generations. And of course, they’d have a wide circle around them, a circle of love, but my job prospects are few, and I’d love to work trying to help others in some way. Here are some career possibilities.
- I’d work with school students whose parents throw them out for being gay. Of course, I’d hook them up with the Trevor Project. See below. I’d also encourage them to find a LGBTQI+ friendly adoption agency if the parent expresses no desire to have the child back. Family reunification is the norm, but some people are just not accepting of that sort of thing.
- I’d love to work with elders and disabled folks bonded by guardianship. Since I went through this for fifteen years, I’d be able to share my experience and together with clients who are ranging from 18 to 108, and far between, we’d fight to end the practice of what looks like slavery and human trafficking of disabled adults and kids. I’d be more than happy to help females who are disabled and elders and such, all that so that I can make the world a better place. No bullshit jobs for me, please.
- I would love to work with those folks no one wants to work with. Even if it means I have to train to work with sex offenders, who really should be spending their lives thinking about how to adapt to a new way of thinking and living. I would be encouraging of these folks to hold themselves accountable for their criminal behavior, but I want to script their minds so that they see how I live, how my fiancé/husband to be lives, and they would understand that interacting with kids is a very serious thing. Yes, we often forget about sex offenders on the other side of the bridge, but the victims would be important too. I’d encourage victims to step forward, of course, and I’d believe my own small victims if they came running, all saying that so and so abused them, molested them, etc. However, the only way to keep molesters from molesting again is to work with these guys, mentally change them, provide them with therapy and meds and all that good stuff so they don’t do it again. Of course, there are some who are too far gone for this, guys like John Kiui, who raped and murdered Jessica Lunsford, and boy do I understand her father’s pain. Mark lost his daughter, but it is important to know that if a predator can benefit from rehab, sure, give him rehab. However, if the life ends in the hands of the predator, then he could possibly be sent to death row. If he has murder fantasies, they have to be stopped before they are acted upon, because if a guy acts upon those fantasies, it’s hard to undo them. There’s a ton of things to consider, stuff to think about when evaluating things like this. I’d be glad to get an MSW and LCSW for all those stupid things I could find myself in, and yes, I’d be glad to do groups of folks.
- I’d be happy to do music therapy as a minor, and with my experience as a social work major, and a music therapy minor, I’d do music at a shelter for homeless youth. Or I could work with homeless families, and I’d be happy to help anyone who needs it.
Think about all this, and tell me why I should then consider a career in a 14c sweat shop. Ugh. Thank you for reading this, and be bold, be brave, and be strong.