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A Quick Note About Police Brutality and ‘Good Cops’

Hi friendlies. As usual, long time no post. Although, this year I think I’m not the only one having a hard time getting content made. I hope you are all staying safe in these pandemic times, wearing masks and washing your hands.

The title says ‘quick’ but this is actually a bit of a long post. I hope you will read all the way down anyhow.<3 It is brought to you by the huge movement of protests that we are currently seeing in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, and the wave of police brutality that has risen up to try and drown them. I’ve never really gone into it here, but there is a LOT of emotional abuse in my past, and I often struggle with speaking up when I should… even in spaces that are ostensibly mine. So this post is also brought to you by the knowledge that I need to try harder, and be better at using my small voice to help people who don’t have the privileges that I do.

And very specifically, this post is here because a relative of mine put up a post on facebook, asking people not to let “One Bad Apple” spoil their perception of all police officers. I think most people know that what is going on, what has been going on for many MANY years, is well beyond that. But, in case someone needed to read some sort of counter to that mentality, I decided to post my response here on my blog as well.

[This is SLIGHTLY different from my facebook post, but mainly in using bold vs capitals]

Please don’t allow a few good cops you may personally know to blind you to the level of violence and brutality that is being perpetrated by police, against unarmed civilians, across the nation.

There is video after video online of un-instigated violence, of police officers intentionally cornering peaceful protesters and brutalizing them. Over a water bottle? Because someone’s umbrella dipped over a barricade? Because of an ‘incendiary device’ that is very super clearly (even labeled) a prayer candle?

-A small child was maced/pepper sprayed in the face. Not on accident, as part of a crowd that was being ‘controlled’. The police officer put his hand down directly into a little girl’s face and sprayed her with a chemical agent on purpose.

Yesterday the man who filmed this horrifying assault was arrested (with something like 5 squad cars for one man), supposedly because he was suspected of using a laser pointer at a protest.

-Police have intentionally shot pepper bullets/baton rounds/ tear gas at journalists. Journalists who were nowhere near them. Journalists who were in the middle of asking where the police would like them to move as they cleared an area. Even journalists who had been publicly praising police response a couple of days before. At least one has lost an eye.

-Police also intentionally attacked medical tents and medics set up at protests. They have shot pepper bullets, baton rounds, and tear gas at clearly marked medics who were literally there only to help people. They beat them with batons. They destroyed medical supplies.

-A young black man and his pregnant wife, lawfully stopped at an intersection with no protesters, had tear gas/pepper bullets shot into their car. When the young man got out to yell at police, across the intersection, that his pregnant wife was in the car, they shot at him.

-A young woman, walking home with her groceries, was shot in the head by a baton round, also known as a ‘rubber bullet’. Not one that had bounced off the ground, one that was intentionally shot at body/head level. She lost her eye.

-Another couple had their car doors ripped open while stopped at a stoplight. Four or five police surrounded them, tased them over and over, and dragged them out of the car while they screamed, and screamed, and screamed.

The next day it was revealed that there wasn’t even probable cause to order them out of the car.

-A 75 year-old man walked up to a couple of police officers in Buffalo, alone. They shoved him, he fell backwards and cracked his head on the pavement. They left him there. As a pool of visible blood formed around his head, the entire patrol/battalion walked over him. Somewhere around fifty police officers let a old man lie bleeding on the pavement and walked over him. They physically held back their own comrades from kneeling to help him. They arrested a civilian who tried to come to his aid.

And in their report on the incident they said that he had ‘tripped and fallen’ during a ‘skirmish’. When the two officers who pushed him were suspended (because it was caught on video) the rest of them resigned from their task force in ‘disgust’. In solidarity with two men who pushed an old man down and left him bleeding, barely moving, on the pavement.

Today they pled ‘not guilty’ and were let off with zero consequences.

This is not a ‘one bad apple’ situation that we are dealing with. This is a system. A system that actively protects people who abuse their power, who brutalize and murder those whom they are supposed to protect. A system that is designed to crush good apples until they begin to rot. A system that black people have been trying to tell us about for a very long time, because up to now it has been mainly focused on them. We should have been listening to them. Our deaf ears and our silence have put blood on our hands.

To any police officers out there who would never do these things, those who have never stood by while their comrades perpetrated harm and hate on black people, or anyone else that they are bound to protect and serve, this is not about you. I sincerely salute you. I love and value the true, selfless heart that is in you. And, I ask that you strive to lay aside any defensiveness belaboring your good hearts and take a stand with the people who are trying to fight back against those whom power has corrupted. Against the police who are terrorizing people, for the sin of talking back to them, of filming their brutal assaults on citizens of this country. For the sin of the color of their skin.



[As a final note: While I hope this post is somehow helpful, please be mindful about keeping black people at the center of this movement. Please remember to lift up their voices and truly listen, even when it makes you feel uncomfortable. If you can, please give money to aid protesters, and the black community at large… not just now, but all the time.]

Here are a few good places to start:
-The Bail Project-  Info   Donations
-The Black Visions Collective-   Info  Donations

Fiyah Magazine- (seriously an awesome magazine with great stories) Info  Subscribe

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Another Year, Another Goal Review

Well friends, here we are in another new year. Another new decade even! 2019 was such a mixed-up crazy time, I still don’t quite know how to feel about it. So much of it surprised me. I talked about some of those surprises in my State of the Jenn update, both good and bad. But some of the most unexpected things are the ones that I only see in hindsight. In 2019 I learned so much. I did so many things I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I even started writing poetry again! ^-^

I could really go on forever, I have so many feelings about 2019. For now though, let’s just take a look at how I did with my set goals from last year. Did I manage anything surprising? I think so!
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State of the Jenn 2020 Update

Hi blog friends! Long time, no me writing anything here! *sheepish grin* So, here’s a quick post of what I’ve been up to, and what you can kind of expect from the blog in the next week or two. ^-^

From our NYD walk in the Seattle Arboretum

State of the Jenn: 

In the briefest of terms, 2019 was a little wild. XD I’m definitely not the only one who could say that, but there was a lot of up-n-down with life and emotional health for me. Large messy emotional disaster of a spring, which turned into actually a very restful and healing summer… and then my Scholar and I got rear-ended on the way to Writer’s Group right before autumn started. Not too much damage, to us or the car, and totally covered by insurance but… whoof. I’ve always said that cars are more trouble than they’re worth, and I doubt I’ll ever change my mind.

Things were very chill for the rest of the year, though a lot of stuff from that accident just lingered. Winter is usually my best brain time, but I struggled with depression and generally feeling useless in December. Worked through a lot of things though, and I think I’m coming out of it a little stronger… definitely with some helpful tools! Had a lovely Christmas with my sister. ^-^ Spent New Year’s sick on the couch. Got a huge gift that almost made me cry, and now I have a Switch! (Spending maybe a liiiiittle too much time playing Pokemon with Lucas… hehe)

So yeah, just a bit of a wiggly year. ^-^

Despite the roller-coaster, I feel pretty good about 2019. (At least when it comes to my personal life) I’ve kicked my holiday cough to the curb now and I’m ready to be productive! Which, is what this blog update is all about.

Blog Stuff: 

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Goal Review 2019 Edition!

Considering that I’m writing this around the end of February, I feel it’s definitely lost all semblance of a “New Year’s” goal review… But, I’m going to post it anyway! ^-^ Not having enough time to get it out in January though, does feel a bit ominous. haha

The truth is I’ve just been very busy with a new job. Yay! I quit my old job, the one that was slowly killing me, in June last year. Or rather, I was kinda forced to quit because I started getting really dizzy at work. Felt like my body giving me a sign that we were DONE. heh I had about a month of basically doing nothing but sleeping, but I feel a lot better now!

With my new job, I’ve switched from food service/retail to office assistant. No more fighting for nights and weekends! ^-^ There are, however, a lot of new things to learn. It’s a completely new knowledge base and I really knew nothing I needed to when I first started. I feel like I’m doing pretty well so far, but it does take a ton of energy. Worth it.

Despite all of this, I have been working steadily on my writing! ^-^ One of the best things about 2018 was definitely the writing group that I joined. I’ve learned so much, and made some friends as well. I definitely plan to keep going.

Whew, that was a bit more a rambling over-view than normal! So, let’s see how I did with my goals from last year…

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Flash Fiction: Parallel

Although the bench at the bus stop was metal and quite cold, Liz barely reacted to it when she sat down. Her mind was full of the insanity that had been her work day. Even more maddening, today was merely a drop in the bucket of endless days. Just more of the same, over and over, until she felt so numb that even a frozen butt could not faze her.

With a small sigh for the sadness of it all, Liz leaned back against the frigid bench and snuggled as far into her coat as she could manage. The sun, an orange glow back-lighting the buildings across the street, had all but set. It would only get colder before her bus came. Continue reading

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Goal Review Season

It seems I am posting these year-end goal reviews later and later every year. XD As long as they’re in January, they still count, right?

2017 was a lot like 2016: not a lot happened on the blog, but I kept at my writing as much as I could. I also dealt with a lot of depression, and what I’ve recently realized was serious burnout and fatigue from my job. I started taking steps to try and work on that around the end of the year, and managed to get my writing groove back a bit. I have a feeling I failed most of my goals… but honestly, I’m going to forgive myself for that and move forward.

With that said, let’s see how everything stacks up from last year. ^-^ Continue reading

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2017 NaNo Notes: Week 3

You might note that there was no ‘Week 2’ update last Wednesday. Yes, this is a pretty accurate gauge of how I’m doing with this Short-Fic NaNo project. I currently stand at 2,063 words, out of the 10,500 I ought to have at this point. (15,000 is the goal for the full month)

So, that’s some serious failing. Those numbers don’t feel good. In fact, I’m pretty sure they’re mocking me.

When I look past the numbers though, and remember what I was hoping this year’s bout of “writer’s therapy” would help me with, it doesn’t feel so bad. It’s been something like three months since the last time I did any real writing… as in, actual writing for a story. Three months might as well be an eternity of not writing.

And now I’m writing. Now, I have 2,063 words that I didn’t have written at the beginning of this month, or even at the end of the first week. In terms of scenes, I’m about a fourth of the way through the story. That’s most of the slow-build setup stuff that always takes forever. At work, instead of pondering new plot points for the stories in my idea hatchery, I’m thinking about awkward scene transitions and what sort of emotional state my character will be in from scene to scene. I’m starting to pull myself out of the pit I’ve been in. This is a huge win!

Okay, it’s more like a small win. ^-^ It’s progress, and that’s something I can be happy about. Oh, also I read four books off my TBR list! Progress all around, haha.

There’s one more week left in the month. Can I grind out 13,000 more by then? It seems preeeeetty unlikely. Nevertheless, I shall try.

Happy Thanksgiving to all. Do your best out there! ^-^

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2017 NaNo Notes: Week 1

Oh man, guys, I am not doing well so far. >.< As in, we’re a whole week into November and I have written zero words. Nada. Nothing. Zip. I was feeling so excited and determined at the end of October, how did this happen?

Well, I’ll give you the quick run-down:

Firstly, I skimped on some basic prep-work, because I thought I already had everything ready to go. I’d decided to go with ‘Angel Wings’ as my first story this month; partly because it’s been on the shelf for way too long, and partly because jumping into something already started is a little easier sometimes. I already had outlines and everything ready to go. My plan was to give the first few scenes a quick re-read and then jump right in! The problem with this plan is that apparently I never typed up all the work I did before the project got shelved. The only file I have is the empty one that I cried about in my “Lost Pages” post, forever ago. Continue reading

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Quick Update and NaNo Plans

There hasn’t been a ton of posting going on here since January, so I thought I’d do a quick update. ^-^

General Update *salutes*

Life is trending about the same as it was earlier this year. I’m choosing to focus on dealing with how things are atm, but I have a few hopeful plans for changing things up and finding a better steady-job/writing work ratio. We’ll see how it goes.

In other news, you can find me on Twitter now! What!? I started earlier this year, and was surprised to find it not nearly as terrifying as I’d thought. If you’d like to check out my ramblings in real-time, my handle is @JennIsWriting. Be advised that my writing updates are still scattered and I have a lot of feels about things political… I also live-tweet Critical Role on most Thursdays. If all that sounds good, come on over. ^-^

I’m planning on doing some updating and fixing things around the blog. Continue reading

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Poetry Month Fridays – Unfinished Epics: The Two At Gonl

A black wave surging
‘tween mountain walls.
Roaring with one voice,
rushing with one purpose,
to break,
with fury, with rage
upon the two who held against them.
The ogres charged.
But the two stood fast.

One a daughter of the arrow.
Helnara, called The Bow,
laughed in the face of the darkness,
laughed, as she bent her bow
and loosed two arrows.
How straight and true her arrows!

The air humming with their flight,
each summoned an enemy
to the Cold One’s halls.
Yet the wave swept onward
as she drew again.
Warm the sun on her bright hair shining,
fierce the light in her eyes,
as she sighted down twin shafts.

Helnara The Bow,
facing hundreds,
to see them running to their death.

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