Author Archives: betsylangert

Shooting Safeguards. A Society Armed

 

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copyright © 2011 Betsy L. Angert. Empathy And Education; BeThink or BeThink.org

Once again, Americans are up in arms or perchance, better armed and dangerous. Only little more than a week into 2011, citizens have had to confront their fears, feelings, all at gunpoint. It began on a calm, clear Saturday. In a Safeway Store Tucson parking lot Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords held one of her customary Congress on the Corner events. It was January 8, 2011. Friends and admirers from each political Party turned out. Suddenly, cordial chatter turned icy cold. gunshots shattered the calm. People were slaughtered. Some survived. However, as a nation, we were all wounded.

Retorts followed. Seemingly, a culture was changed, or was it? Just as has occurred, many times in the recent past, people quickly took sides. Blame was ballied about. Solutions were also presented. Some argued for stricter gun control laws. Others used the occasion to validate a need for less restrictive restraints on gun ownership. Persons who held a position similar to the most prominent victim proposed a need to protect themselves. Continue reading

Profundity of Peace on Earth

 
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copyright © 2011 Betsy L. Angert. Empathy And Education; BeThink or BeThink.org

This year, Christmas and New Years Days were days of intense reflection. Perchance, that is true every year and for every individual. I cannot know what is true for others. I am only certain that on each of these dates I was immersed in a rigorous course of study. My gifts or the curriculum came wrapped in a routine event.

The lessons covered were Empathy and Education, although perhaps these were presented in reverse order. Possibly, the truer program was entropy and encouragement. Each edifies. I wonder; on each of the two days these topics were intertwined. In my attempt to analyze and understand what I needed to learn or did, I invite your assessments. Please indulge me as I share the story. Continue reading

You Are the Gift!

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. Empathy And Education; BeThink or BeThink.org

Perchance, on this the twenty-second commemoration of a lesson learned, it is time to reflect on our first, foremost, and greatest Teachers. More than a generation has passed. In that time, I have acquired much knowledge. Yet, I am forever reminded that the more I know, the more certain I am. I know nothing with certainty. What I once thought was the greatest treasure, a tradition I could never part with, was other than it appeared. I never imagined what would become my truth. Today, I share the tale with you. Continue reading

Corporate Sponsors in Schools

Ken Robinson says schools kill creativity

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. Empathy And Education; BeThink or BeThink.org

“The principle goal of education is to create men who are capable of doing new things, not simply of repeating what other generations have done – men who are creative, inventive and discoverers”
~ Jean Piaget [Swiss Psychologist. Pioneer in the study of child intelligence. 1896-1980]

“The purpose of education is to enable us to develop to the fullest that which is inside us”
~ Norman Cousins [Essayist, Editor associated with Saturday Evening Post 1912-1990]

”America’s noble experiment, universal education for all” may have become but an idealized theory. In practice it long seemed the impossible dream. However, for the hopeful this statement was a reverie, although the veracity was virtually unrecognizable at best. Still the notion lived on. The powerful prose marveled many. That is all but believers in a for-profit privatized educational system. Today, corporate aficionados have conquered. Commerce controls School District Administrators. It shapes decisions made. Countless elementary and secondary school campuses are transformed in accordance. Big business buys and sells city classrooms. Our forefathers would have thought present-day headlines could only appear in fictional accounts. Nonetheless banners blare, ”This Class Is Brought to You By. [fill in the corporate enterprise of your choice]” Continue reading

Humans; Heartbreak, Heartache, and Heart Felt Feelings

 

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. Empathy And Education; BeThink or BeThink.org
Originally published, Thursday, October 19, 2006 at 13:24:53 PM

Currently, I am writing for an educational organization. In penning my pain for what occurs in our schools today, it occurred to me the same impersonal approach, awareness, or lack thereof, is evident in offices, neighborhoods, and in our broader community. People pretend to or believe they “ know” their fellow workers, their family members, and their friends. Yet, more often than not, I observe that this is not necessarily true. I, we, she, or he only comprehends what is visible on the surface.

Few choose to ask of, address, or answer the deeper concerns that life delivers daily; I offer this narrative and request your reflections. We all have our own tale to tell. I invite you to share yours. Please trust that I care; your secrets are safe with me. I suspect that others will honor you as I choose to do. I believe we all relate to sorrow.

Today the distress I wish to discuss is heartbreak, heartache, and heart felt feelings. In my own life, I am witnessing that many close to me are battling life-threatening illnesses. Their terminal diagnoses affect me deeply. They weigh heavy on those closer to the “ patient” than I. I cannot begin to imagine the pain long-suffering persons feel. Yet, through the quiet trials and tribulations of a teen, who supposedly studied under my tutelage, I learned. What we hide hurts us most. Continue reading

Bullies; The Mystery


copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org and EmpathyAndEducation.org

Since I was a child he hounded me. She stalked me. I was bullied, intimidated, tormented not by a single person, but by a throng of thoughts. Why did another child, adolescent, nay adult ever bully me. What was it about me that kept me safe from harm or a persecutor’s pointed proclamations? Continue reading

Report of My Death. Et tu, Brute

Meek speaks: reports are ‘inaccurate at best’

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

Drama fills the airwaves. The tragic comedy comes to life, or is theatre of the absurd. The curtain rises. The cast murmurs. They say, it was first heard, or read in May 1897. At the time, Mark Twain and his demise were the topic. Today, The New York Times splashed the story on the front page of the paper. Bill Clinton Tried to Get Meek to Drop Out. The former President and friend of the Meek family, “last week tried to convince Kendrick Meek, the Democratic candidate for Senate in Florida, to drop out of the race.” Continue reading

Race To the Top Leaves Children Behind

Collaborative Planning

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

While many muse as a culture we cannot continue “Waiting for Superman” to transform our schools, others expect our Teachers to be Supermen or Superwomen. Some say private school Educators are superior. Only the Instructors employed in public educational institutions are flawed. There seems to be agreement in our society; these Teachers cannot take the lead. The system, critics cry, out must change. Philanthropists proclaim they are here to save the day. Privatization is the only way to work through what has been a woeful failure. No, Administrators and the current Administration avow; Teachers are the problem. We must assess their performance and pay Educators accordingly. Continue reading

Money Moves No Minds

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

In the Fall, this year and every year, in this nation talk turns to Education. The President of the United States delivers a speech to students. Articles appear in the news. Television broadcasts beckon us to think about our Education Nation. In 2010, Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, did what many thought novel. He donated $100 million dollars to Newark City Schools. Some were skeptical of his motives. More rejoiced. Certainly with abundant cash in the coffers, change would come to the nations schools, or at least to the chosen educational institutions. However, it might not. Continue reading

BP and CEOs Fight the Laws


Kendrick Meek; Blast BP and Corporate Irresponsibility

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

Whispers whirled around the White House, on The Hill, within the Department of Justice, and finally filtered down to the streets. In truth, talk could be heard on the avenues, where average Americans roam, long before declarations came from above. Should BP CEO Tony Hayward go to prison? The public wonders. What would the Obama Administration do? Countless clamored, with full knowledge that President Bush’s DOJ killed a criminal probe into BP. It was believed that the potential indictments threatened the most senior officials. More recently, words of warrants have become a distinct possibility. Criminal charges are being considered against BP in regards to the Gulf oil rig tragedy.

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Doctor; Your Diagnosis. My Death

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copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

Dearest Doctor, I have come to my senses. Days ago, when you offered your diagnosis, I died. No, not literally. Had you done me in, I would not be here to write what I hope will help inform your bedside manner. Well, in my case only the way in which you approach a patient who merely sits in an examining room chair near you is the concern. You may recall our time together began so innocently. We sat down to review the results of annually scheduled blood-work. I had not felt sick all year or on that day. You had even expressed, it had been so long since we last saw each other. You scanned the pages, and proclaimed, that I must have returned to my bulimic ways. My spirit perished. I had done nothing of the sort! Yet, you said you were sure I had. Continue reading

Progressives. Meek Greene. Strangers in Strange Place


Campaign ’10: Meek v Greene [1st Debate Overview]

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

More than a month has passed, actually now it has been two. In the third week of June, I heard the song in my head for the first time. With each day that passes the volume increases. Friends, family, and familiars were privy to what has been a curiosity for me. Still haunted by what I know needs to be shared farther and wider, today I tell you my tale. The story begins with two Florida Democrats. Each aspires to fill the one open United States Senate seat. The date; June 22, 2010. I was amongst those invited to attend the initial Meek Greene debate.. The place? The Palm Beach Post headquarters. The time? Midday. The reality realized and the reason my mind marinated in the melody titled It’s About Time, Today, Democrats, Progressives are not as they were.

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Got A New Sheriff, Elizabeth Warren


Elizabeth Warren Rap Video- Got A New Sheriff

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

There is so much flak for what seems would be a fine Presidential appointment. The nation’s Chief Executive, Barack Obama, is often characterized as Spock, a Vulcan who is almost virtually void of emotion. It is said that our current President is practical. He acts on logic. Yet, this supposed intellectual individual has, at times, seemed ready to do other than what most think reasonable. Mister Obama has not appointed the truly best Sheriff for towns throughout the country, Elizabeth Warren. Continue reading

Choice Becomes More Clear; Carole P. Kaye for Florida House District 86

Carole Kaye Democrat for House 86

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Exit Strategy or Essentially Endless?

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Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
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Media and the Message. CNN; Retain Bush Tax Cuts

Please view the video, CNN’s Fareed Zakaria says the easiest way to cut the deficit is to let the Bush tax cuts expire.

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

The day was Sunday, August 1, 2010. Former Fed Chairman, Alan Greenspan appeared on Meet the Press. When asked to discuss the Congressional debate on tax cuts, the man known to move markets, a person who leans to the “Right,” offered a decisive decree. In direct disagreement with Republican officials and the profitable corporations that fund countless political campaigns, Mister Greenspan declared, “Look, I’m very much in favor of tax cuts, but not with borrowed money. And the problem that we’ve gotten into in recent years is spending programs with borrowed money, tax cuts with borrowed money, and at the end of the day, that proves disastrous. And my view is I don’t think we can play subtle policy here on it.”

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Of/By/4: The Belly Belatedly Understood

By Betsy L. Angert 

See Of/By/4 video at Daily Kos (18 mins.).

Dearest Mommy and my natural father . . .

I apologize. My belly, my bloated body, only belatedly do I understand. It never was in the genes. The abundant meat that weighed heavily on my bones was not caused by my chromosomal structure; it was piled on by Congressional and corporately funded campaigns. Mommy and the husband who helped make me, much to my embarrassment, today I acknowledge my error. I was spoon-fed, and not by the two of you. Legislators, lobbyists, and big businesses that place misleading labels on chemically cooked up cuisines put corn fillers on my every plate. I chowed down. My little body bulged out. From the inside out, I grew bigger and wider. Continue reading

A Birth Date Plea; Presidential Power in a Democracy

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

On the eve of President Obama’s birth date, thoughts turn to his time in office. As a man, countless admire the person, Barack Obama, and yet, feel that they cannot fully celebrate his performance. Hope has all but disappeared. Audacity appears vanquished. Still, some are sure that there is reason to believe. People ponder potentials not fully realized. Prospects for change loom large. Several may be shared in the sentiments offered on this auspicious occasion. Continue reading

Roland Martin; Racism, Tears and Fears

Please View the video of the exchange . . . Sherrod to Martin: ‘You are dead wrong!”

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

Once you label me you negate me.
~ Søren Aabye Kierkegaard [Danish Philosopher 1813 to 1855]

The much acclaimed Roland Martin, a Cable News Network Analyst, reacted to a partial report. Apparently, Mister Martin, acknowledged for his insightful and provocative assessments, heard but a bit of an edited video and responded on a national stage. Admittedly, barely informed, and unaware of the background, the CNN Correspondent spoke of his antipathy for what he defined as a racist reality. The frequently featured Journalist offered his fervent judgment of Federal Department of Agriculture Director Shirley Sherrod’s actions, none of which occurred. On Tuesday, July 20, 2010, late in the afternoon, given an opportunity to listen to and speak with the object of his scorn, Shirley Sherrod, the righteous Roland Martin refused to open his mind and ears. Mister Martin avowed racism is racism regardless of when it occurs or if it is repeated years later. The consequence, tears and fears flourished. These were my own. Continue reading

The Preamble; Fix it or Nix It?

copyright © 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org

At present, oil saturates the Gulf Stream. An official six-month cessation of permits for new drilling did not actually affect the industry or government decisions. Despite Moratorium, Drilling Projects Move Ahead. To explain such an authorization and waiver, the Department of the Interior and the Minerals Management Services Division which regulates drilling, pointed to public statements by Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar. He did not intend to forbid all first cuts in the Earth’s crust. Absolutely not. The Federal Government approved wells off the coast of Louisiana in June. Regardless of the day, or realities that are anathema to our citizenry, little has truly changed. Today, just as in yesteryear, we, the people of the United States of America, in order to form a more perfect Union, polish policies to appear as though our civilization would wish to protect and defend all beings, equally. Continue reading