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Let Me Tell YOU What’s Shameful, Michael Avery!!

If you go to the Suffolk University Law School in Massachusetts, you can keep your damn kindness to yourself, thank you very much – at least if law professor Michael Avery has anything to say about it.

Haven’t heard this story?  Well, the school put out an appeal for donations so that care packages could be sent to our soldiers overseas.  Professor Avery stepped up in response, sending out a five paragraph email to his colleagues, calling it “shameful” to put care packages together to send to men and women who’s job it is to kill people for a living.

Well.  Let me tell YOU, Professor Avery, what “shameful” is – because evidently, somewhere among the mountains of law books you’ve studied to achieve the level of academic respect you command, you’ve lost your mind.

It’s shameful that we have to send care packages to our service men and women that include things like deodorant, shampoo, soap, powder, and toothpaste, because some of these brave men and women are defending your right to say what you said in areas where they can’t get their hands on the basic necessities.

It’s shameful that we have to send care packages that include socks, gloves, hats, and long johns, because some of our servicemembers are defending your ability to spew hate in areas where it’s cold and their units may not be properly supplied with clothes that provide extra warmth while they stand watch in the dark of night in the dead cold.

It’s shameful that we have to send care packages that include things like drink mixes, beef jerky, crackers, and snacks.  Those hard core killer over there protecting your sorry ass right to say what you want to say are often in places where the next hot meal isn’t immediately on the horizon, and this is all they may have to stave off the pangs of hunger.

And you know, Professor Avery, it’s shameful that we can’t round up people who show such disdain for the men and women protecting your right to be a pathetic excuse of an American and march you to the front lines unarmed so you can see just what shameful is. 

I hope the drive to collect items to make these care packages is a rousing success on the campus of Suffolk University, because it would be absolutely shameful if it wasn’t.


What I Want My Kids to Know about 9/11

You know exactly where you were.  It is our generation’s day that will live in infamy.

I sat on my sofa, watching Good Morning America, folding socks.  I save sorting socks for those days when I can find NOTHING else to do.  My seven month old Eilis was in her gym-thingy.  Brighid was in school.  Jim was at work, just across the water from New York City.  Granuaile was nothing more than wishful thinking.

I called Jim immediately when the first plane hit.  He was a small plane pilot, and I thought not only would he be intrigued, but I thought he’d explain to me how a plane could be that wrong in it’s directions.  Minutes later, we knew what we know now.

But two of my children do not.

I left Brighid in school that day, although other moms were running to pick their kids up.  I wanted her day to be normal, because honestly, I feared it would never be normal again.  Visions of war torn countries played in my head, where children play among the rubble of bombed out buildings.  I wanted her to have one more normal day.

It’s 10 years later.   We’ve all grown into a new normal and learned how to live life with terror threats over our heads, but really, we’ve remained – at least on US soil – relatively unscathed.  We learned about the rainbow system used for alerting us of the potential of a terror attack; we know to wear socks when we go to the airport; and most of us recognize the importance of scrutinizing our carry on bags.

But what do we tell the children who don’t remember? 

They’re going to see it on the news and in magazines.  They’ll probably hear something in school or in the community.  So I want my girls to know something.  This is what I want them to know:

Not everyone learned what they should have learned in kindergarten – that we should all be nice to each other and try to get along.  Some people never learn.

We are as safe as we can possibly be, thanks to thousands of soldiers and sailors who protect us, even when we’re sleeping; even when we’re at school; even when we’re at Dram’s; and even when we’re at the playground. 

Be grateful – always – for the sacrifice these men and women make for us.  Be grateful – always – for the sacrifice their families make so that they can protect us. 

Know that sometimes, these soldiers and sailors don’t get to go home to their little girls and little boys.  They get a new job – guardian angel.  Remember in your prayers their little boys and girls.

You want heroes?  You won’t find them on the football field, the basketball court, in concert, or on television.  You’ll find them right in our neighborhood, protecting us and keeping us safe.  We call them policemen and fire fighters.

Most of all, I want them to know that 2,998 angels were born on September 11, 2001 – including Nanny’s cousin Andrew – and as a result, we became a better country.  We were proud, we stood strong in the face of danger, we linked arms and promised each other we would never forget.

Let’s hope we never do.