A Hero

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I never went into the military. They courted me as I was getting done with high school. But then, it was the cold war, and I lived in a military town. They courted everyone.

I didn’t join because I figured I wouldn’t get in anyway due to my poor eyesight. I also had no self confidence and figured I only ever be a mediocre soldier, whatever that meant.

And of course, even though I had never revealed it or said it to anyone or had any kind of experience at all, and completely repressed it and hid it from the entire world, I knew I was gay. And being found out that you are gay in the military was one of the worst shames there was according to the rules of life at the time.

Still, so many things expressed by Capt. Stephen Hill are mirrored in my own life. Wanting to love women and have kids…

“”God, let me be normal””.

Can’t tell you how many time I whispered this in the night, or cried out in a deserted field those exact words! And I’m not even religious!!!

“”Sometimes, he thought about how easy it would be if he stuck his head out of the truck and an enemy bullet just erased him.””

Mine was driving along the freeways on the San Diego coast thinking “If I just swerved right now, I’d go right over the rails and right into the ocean, and that would be that”. I never would have done it. Survival instincts would have never allowed it. But the thoughts…. Oh, there were very much there. A lot at some points.

“”The bartender handed him a Diet Coke and touched the straw, which made him fear he might contract AIDS.””

I inadvertently started the long journey of accepting myself and my feelings for the same sex just when the term AIDS was just becoming used more to refer to the gay cancer rather than the diet pills of the same name. I was in high school at the time, and there was talk here and there that AIDS was a good thing, because it will wipe the fags from the face of the Earth. I don’t remember anyone person saying that, but the specter of AIDS, yet one more shame to be piled onto the shame of being gay, now also wandered about in the corridors of my lonely life. The stigma of being was by many automatically connect to the disease, so if you were gay, well, you automatically had AIDS, and needed to be quarantined like they used to do to lepers.

Then there was being on the diving team in high shcool. I didn’t even WANT to do that, but my sister, a year older, was on the swim tea as a freshman, and had told the diving coach about her little brother who could already do flips and things on the diving board when we were kids. So when I was a freshman the next year, I was already pretty much on the team.

Part of the reason why I didn’t want to do it, even though I did have some natural talent for it, was because I KNEW I would lose – talk about a self fulfilling prophecy – but also, being in a locker room with other naked guys was a fearful thing, not just because… Well… I don’t have to explain that I think. The bigger problem was that I didn’t WANT to feel the things I felt, the unnatural desires, and being in that environment made locking those desires away an impossible task. Every day was a horrible reminder that I would never be normal like everyone else. Every day was an inescapable immersion into a private pool of fear and shame.

And I didn’t even have a burning desire to compete. That wouldn’t sprout until later, once I realized I wasn’t ALWAYS destined to lose. And it’s a shame too, because I almost certainly would have been a better diver than I was, and I wasn’t bad at all. Oh well… Water under the bridge… Or board.

There is more to compare and contrast. And though some of the details of my life and struggles I experienced while coming to terms and peace with being gay may differ from Capt. Stephen Hill, there are a lot of commonalities for those of us who, for whatever reason, took a very long time to find peace with who we are, to find and build a life that was free of the negativity and fears that used to weigh us down when we said the words “I’m gay”.

But Stephen Hill risked losing a heck of a lot more than I ever had when he took that final leap. I didn’t have a career and pensions that would have been in jeopardy to lose when I finally was truthful to the world. So I tip my hat to a fine human being Capt. Stephen Hill.

Brave soldier.

Brave man.

Mandela And “Israel Bashing”

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On facebook, my friend Bret Whitley? asked this question on a thread, and it’s something I have been wanting to discuss for a while and never got around to it. But the Mandela / ANC discussions had already brought the topic Bret cues up back into focus.

Thanks Bret for kicking this one off.

Here is his question:

” Why is Israel so trounced upon by the left or progressives when they are the ones being bombarded with terroristic attacks and only retaliate with reasonably appropriate response by the standards used in the case of Mandela, George Washington, Abe Lincoln, William Wallace or King David. I’ve asked before to be corrected if I was wrong and since then I’ve read that it wasn’t just racial equality Mandela was fighting for, he was after all an African nationalist, democratic socialist and co-founded the MK with the South African Communist Party. Not exactly an Abe Lincoln type of guy. And please refrain from the argument that Israel stole the land from the Palestinians. There hasn’t been a Palestine since biblical times. And the British Mandate doesn’t count. Palestinian primarily referred to anything associated with that region before 1948, Jews, Arabs, Jordanians, Syrians etc… Now the word Palestinian is used in reference to non-Jew Arabs. And to back up my Israeli question, I do have friends with family in Israel, the shelling and attacks have been directed at them first for a very long time and have only increased. “

I’m not a liberal, but I’ll share my thoughts on this topic.

First part of the question: “Why is Israel so trounced upon by the left or progressives when they are the ones being bombarded with terroristic attacks and only retaliate with reasonably appropriate response by the standards used in the case of Mandela, George Washington, Abe Lincoln, William Wallace or King David.”

Well, for one thing, it’s because we are witnessing in real time the persistent culling on a population from their native lands. The Israeli government is using a lot of the same tactics that the young United States did to slowly resolve the “Indian problem”. Though there are some differences, the same dynamics are in play, where the more technologically advanced peoples / culture is slowly but surly usurping the other by taking the land and making it their own. That is the reason Netanyahu, despite numerous opportunities to display good faith and show he is serious about a two-state solution, will not halt the construction of new settlements in Gaza and the West Bank. The ultimate goal is to build enough settlement so that the Palestinian people will be squeezed out… Problem solved.

Next – None of the leaders you reference in your comment are comparable to the Israeli side of things. The Israeli people are not being oppressed or subjugated or abused or treated like a second or third class of citizen by a more powerful foe. The Israeli government and far superior military, in this case, is the Goliath.

“And please refrain from the argument that Israel stole the land from the Palestinians.”

Well, first, the original “stealing” wasn’t done by the Israelis… It was done by the UN. I fully understand why it was done. But the land was taken from an indigenous peoples and a new country was created out of whole cloth on top of that stolen land. They used the same basic model that serve the Great Powers in the Treaty of Versailles, the taking and repartitioning of lands in the Middle East in a way helped them, but didn’t take into account the dynamics of the native cultures and civilizations that were already there. We are still paying the price for their lack of foresight.

“There hasn’t been a Palestine since biblical times.”

Irrelevant. There wasn’t a “state” of Palestine per see, at least by western standards. But there was a people. And that was their homeland.

By the way…. There wasn’t a United States in biblical times either, but you’re fine with our existence. Some even say God preordained this country, which is funny because this country was built by a slow but persistent European invasion coupled with a semi-genocide of the native peoples. Don’t get me wrong…. I’m not saying our country shouldn’t exist, or that we are “Evil” or anything like that. But the method we used to gain the land we now call the United States was hardly adherent to any religious principle I know of, unless conquering and dispossessing a population for your own benefit seems like something that is just and righteous.

It’s distasteful; it’s a stain on the American cultural tapestry… But it’s the way it happened. It’s history. It is what it is, and you can’t change it.

Now, what if we saw the same thing happening to another people? What if we could stop another country from making the same damning mistakes we did?

What Israel is doing now is as wrong as what this country did to it’s native population.

That is part of the answer.

“I’ve asked before to be corrected if I was wrong and since then I’ve read that it wasn’t just racial equality Mandela was fighting for, he was after all an African nationalist, democratic socialist and co-founded the MK with the South African Communist Party. Not exactly an Abe Lincoln type of guy.”

You’re not wrong… But you’re not right either. The SACP, declare illegal in the 1950, was indeed an ally and founding partner of the ANC, but it wasn’t an alliance based on common views or agreement with Communist ideals. It was an alliance based on the common gal of ousting the Apartheid regime. Mandela was no more a Communist based on this alliance than the US was Communist based on their alliance with the USSR during World War 2. The struggles of war make for strange bedfellows. After the successful ouster of the white supremacist government, Mandela is quoted as saying:

“There will always be those who say that the Communists were using us. But who is to say that we were not using them?”

As demonstrated by your own information. Mandela was willing to make alliances with people of differing political views, which in fact does make him comparable to Abe Lincoln, as that was a hallmark of Lincolns leadership skills.

I do have friends with family in Israel, the shelling and attacks have been directed at them first for a very long time and have only increased.

This whole thing is a mess. There are no easy answers. But the reason Israel get so much blame is because the ball is firmly in its court. If they wanted peace, they could get it. The possibility was shown to exist by the cease fire and almost success of the Oslo Accords in the 90’s. And that was done with Yasser Arafat no less! Mahmoud Abbas is a much more malleable guy. But Israels refusal to do anything meaningful to demonstrate it really wants peace, refusal to halt its continued expansion of the settlements and blockades against the residence of the Gaza Strip, and pursue a peace deal in good faith, guarantees your friends will continue to have to live with the constant shelling.

Violence begets violence. This is a self perpetuating situation.

Again, Israel is the greater power by magnitudes. The ball is in their court. That is why they rightfully get so much of the blame.

I have more to say, but I have to got be on TV now.

Spam Of The Day…. Woo Hoo! We (I) Write Really Good!!!

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“I am regular visitor, how are you everybody?

This piece of writing posted at this site is really good.”

Signed: Some Net-bot trying to sell me something

Spam Of The Day….. Yo Yo Bitches!

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Hi. I can tell this website caters towards the rap genre. My company improves the facebook accounts of rappers.If your site would be interested in creating a partnership, let us know on our contact page! Thanks.


You get that impression for reading my blog….


“After The Fall”. Old Song…. New Life.

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Back in the early 90’s, in my first band Tribe Called Mike, we used to play two songs I had written years earlier. “After The Fall” was one of those songs. I don’t thinks it’s been played live since then. At the time, I had no confidence and just knew it was a horrible song and considered it filler for the more important things we played, which was everyone else’s songs.

Yeah, I had very VERY low self esteem back then. The thing about self esteem… No matter what you accomplish, you never see that it’s a real accomplishment. Low self esteem makes everything feel fake. It’s a filter that robs you of the bright and happy things in your life that are ripe for the taking and enjoying. Looking back, having my song played in this band was a MUCH BIGGER accomplishment than I ever was able to recognized.

The song has been in mothballs for twenty years now. It’s time to take it out of the closet, beat the dust off with a broomstick – or whatever is laying about – and get it ready for the solo album.

The lyric was written a year or two after I graduated from high school. The inspiration? I had a dream… or maybe a day dream… about a girl I had a crush on in high school, Debbie Sheffield. Good Lord she was HOT… And TOTALLY out of my league! Plus, she might have dated my older brother. The song is an alternate reality, where we had been a couple, but had broken up… For good! Final! Since it was two years in real life since I had even seen her, and I’m still thinking about her, can you imagine the idiot I would have been had we actually been in a relationship???? Can you say obsessive???? I’d break up with me too!!!

So, anyway, the song captures a mythical moment where I’m pining for the girl I lost, a girl in real life that I never even had….

Is that a bit psychotic????

Here is the lyric, which will be recorded for the solo album next year. BTW, This song is one of the ones that come to me as a complete thing, with both lyrics and music. For me, it’s usually only lyrics. I do love those magic moments where it all comes together at once:


it’s been a year or more
Since the prize fight
It was the worst fight
It was our last fight

Our friends were so concerned
They gave me advise (they said)
It would be all right
But I don’t buy it


After your fall from grace
I still long for your embrace
But you’re a memory without a face
Just a clue
I can’t erase


They say time heals all woulds
They stop bleeding
But never neatly
Not completely

After your fall from grace
I still long for your embrace
But you’re a memory without a face
Just a clue



After the fall
After the fall…. (repeated 6 more times)

The music on the chorus is going to be a bit different than the way I played it back then – I was genuinely not happy with that aspect of the song back then – But it will not stray too far from the original arrangement.

Mandela Wanted To “Kill The Whites!”….

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Um… No. He didn’t.

That’s the claim being made by many lunatics on the web… I love the Mandela is “The Che Guevara Of Africa” bit… Can’t leave out World Net Daily… They just have to get their digs in… And probably now former supporters of Ted Cruz. To a person, they cite a video showing Mandela and a Jew singing the “MK National Anthem” that they say says this very thing.

Is it true?

Here is the only source video I could find of him doing that. Now, I don’t speak but if you look closely at around the 35 second mark, you’ll see that no one is singing a word in the audio, but they sure are singing something, specifically a worded phrase, on the video.

So, in this case at least, the audio was spliced onto the video. The pictures of the before and after, where everything is destroyed after Mandelas rule… Who the hell knows if this is in South Africa or not.

UPDATE: Here is a better video:

Clearly it’s the same video. And as expected, the singing is quite different.

Now, as to WHAT is being sung. Again, I’m as clueless as the next average American on what they are singing. The source of the first video from Tru-Tube, judging from the “song” they spliced onto the video, is, to put it mildly, racist. The post originator “angry_white_guy” features this in the description of what is happening in the video:

Former leader of the ANC Youth League, Peter Mokaba, has been a major driving force behind the agitation among blacks against whites in South Africa, using songs that encouraged the murdering of whites. Mokaba, presently South Africa’s Environmental and Tourist Minister, was one of the most energetic song and dance leaders during the meetings held by the ANC prior to the elections in 1994 where slogans like “Kill the Farmer!” and “Kill the Boer!” were chanted openly:

“Hamba kahle mkhonto we Sizwe, Tihna Abantu bomkhonto Sizimisele Ukuwa bulala woma lamabunu”

—We members of Umkhonto are prepared to kill all the Boers.

“Khwela phezukwendlu Ubutshele umanishaya Ibhunu umama vyajabula”

—Get on the roof and tell them that when I hit the Boer, my mother becomes happy.

“Amabhunu ahlupha abazali Ekhaya bathi ziphi Izingane zabo Sizbashaya nge Nge bazooka”

—Whites and Boers are troubling our parents at home: we are going to hit them with our Ak-47’s and bazookas.

Though today he maintains that the songs were just a sort of “campfire songs”, these statements by Peter Mokaba made during a meeting with black students, published in The Johannesburg Star on the 25th of April in 1993, tell a different story:

—They are complaining that in our songs, in our chants, we have been saying “Kill the Boer, Kill the Farmer.” I repeat: “Kill the Boer, the Farmer, Kill the Boer, the Farmer. Shoot to kill—nyamazano” (Eng. the prey).

—Whether they like it or not, this is our chant. This is our song. This is our tradition. This is our culture, whether they like it or not …

This is our song. This is our tradition. This is our culture, whether they like it or not…

Gee…. Doesn’t that sound familiar.

The second video is offered from a blog that features some articles in English, some in what I presume is Afrikaans. The point of the site seems to be that all crime and bad things that happens against whites in South Africa, is, in fact, all Nelson Mandela’s fault.

Gee…. That sounds familiar.

Note: On the translation, a guy from South Africa says this:

the translation in this video is not really accurate. the song here in question is kill the ‘ama bhulu’= the boers=the afrikaners=the white supremacist government. so the translation is not entirely accurate. he’s not calling on genocide on whites but on ‘the death of afrikaner white supremacy apartheid’.

That certainly has a ring of truth to it. Certainly, Mandela’s actions, which are supposed to be much more important than words, especially words sung in a tribal / cultural song, do not support the claim that he’s a racist and wants a genocide to exterminate all whites.

One more thing about culture. Those who are going on about Mandela singing this cultural song… I wondr if you were upset about Trace Adkins wearing a Confederate earing and his response to the criticism?

As a proud American I object to oppression of any kindTo me, the battle flag represents remembrance of my Southern lineage [culture] — I am a descendant of Confederate soldiers who followed that flag into battle. I advocate for the preservation of America’s battlefields and honest conversation about our country’s history. To those who view the flag as a symbol of racism, that was not my message and I did not intend offense.”

Interesting which symbols of culture seem to offend some more than others.

(Note – that is a Huff-Po pol, so it’s accuracy can be questioned as far as the actual numbers go. But you will find more conservatives willing to defend the display of the Confederate flag, as was recently done “>at a Tea Party rally, than the display of the Rainbow flag)