Gentilly Girl- a part of the 99%

July 3, 2010

Independence Day 2010

Filed under: American Culture — Morwen Madrigal @ 5:40 pm

Tomorrow marks 234 years of the words of my hero Thomas Jefferson… the day a new concept was unveiled before the World, an idea that created the most Free Society in the history of the World.

Even with it’s problems and inequalities I am still proud of this crazy polyglot Nation. Yes I want to feed the Tea Baggers to my gators and I hate the fact that we are bringing war to places that don’t deserve it. The Corporations that run roughshod over us are not a thrill either.

And the dollar means more than the folk or our land: the Gulf is being killed, mountains being topped and rivers polluted. These are things that still must be corrected.

Still, this country is a place where an Intersexed, Lesbian, Pagan and Socialist Progressive can walk and talk. A place where I feel at home and safe. A place of promise. A place that can experience Change.

This little soul has been half-way around the World twice and lived in many places. This is the only country that I want to be in. Understand that blessing all of you have by living here. It ain’t perfect, but it beats everything else.

So tomorrow I will fly the flag, upside down of course since our Gulf is being harmed and New Orleans is still not fixed after the Federal Flood in 2005. But, I still must believe in the America I gave years to and have always loved. A collection of people, who sometimes aren’t my cup of tea, are the best souls in the World.

It’s our 234th B’Day. Fire up the hot dogs, burgers and steaks (tofu for the Vegans). Party hearty.

May the Goddess protect and cherish America. (and so should you.)

June 24, 2010

A Message To Judge Feldman Concerning the Drilling Moratorium

Filed under: Gulf Coast,Louisiana,New Orleans — Morwen Madrigal @ 11:29 pm

Your decision to block the Department of the Interiors’s moratorium on deep sea drilling is based in fallacy. An accident has occurred on a relatively new technology that has no answers for errors when it comes to their mistakes. There are no real back-up plans. Where are the Real Life solutions to disasters such as the Macondo disaster?They didn’t plan, or maybe they just didn’t care, yet our World, our lives and dreams are in danger.

There aren’t any solutions at this point in time. There are no solutions forthcoming from the industry that has caused this calamity. I find this deeply troubling. It smells  of “Who cares about those people”.

It stinks to the Heavens.

There are no plans for something like this, but your lifting of the deep drilling moratorium opens us to more of what Macondo has gifted us: children cannot wade in the Gulf waters, people cannot fish, many animals will die from either the oil or the chemicals that are supposed to quell the problem. The air stinks of petro chemicals even 100 miles away.

And as far as those who claim that the moratorium will, “put thousands out of work”, and “There are millions of dollars that will not be coming in” are somewhat false.

There are over 3,300+ rigs running in the Gulf near Louisiana. They need to be served, personnel transferred and materials be delivered. This moratorium will not kill the drilling industry, only put on hold on one aspect of it that is proving itself not safe at this point in time.

Don’t let these companies and the chimps they fund as elected officials lead you down the wrong path. These corporations that will attempt to go into risky ventures in order to make more money will do anything, anything, for the dollar, even if it means wiping out the livelihoods and meaning of cultures for their own gain.

What the Hell, they aren’t part of that which is being destroyed.

So I’m going to speak plainly to you Sir:

Your Honor, please don’t believe their lies when it comes to the economic impact of the moratorium on the Gulf states. It will be minimal. They don’t care what happens to us. Look at what they have done to the wetlands of Louisiana over many decades in their unbridled search for money disguised as oil/gas exploration: destruction of wetlands that protected major population centers and the poisoning of our environment. They are “helping” America at the expennse of the Americans who live in the effected areas.

Now they seek to “own ” the Gulf as their private money pit and the people of this region, well… who cares about them? It’s about energy self-reliance (B/S), or it’s about Progress,  it’s all about profit and control. They destroy the Gulf for those who live here and then there is only one option left: turn it into a petrochemical mine.

This is not the notion of a Nation I fought to protect. This not the America I believe in.

Sorry Your Honor, I can’t abide by that decision. This is OUR Coast. These are OUR waters. This region is a treasure for the Nation, and I’m not talking Black Gold or Gas. This is OUR home.

The real treasure for the Nation is our cultures, the natural world, beauty and a sense of harmony with Nature.

We live with the cycles of Nature: spawning seasons, tides. The stock market means little to us as we bait our crab nets, tong the silt for oysters or chase the shrimp runs. When we sit down to eat we are ready for the bounty that Nature, in Her bounty, delivers to us, and we are grateful. We live the old way. There is no other way for us to live and be real.

Our lives, no matter what we are doing in the present are based on the patterns our ancestors followed, and in a major way we must follow them. It is intrinsic to our beings. It is what we on the Coast are… creatures who in many ways must live within our sphere, our nature. It’s Nature’s way. To go elsewhere is a violation of our being.

This is our our World, and the current BP oil spill, no matter the reasons or the blame, are putting us and our World in danger.

Right now under the current situation, we have become an endangered species. My extended family’s boats are idle, as are my friend’s jobs in the restaurants of New Orleans. People are canceling their trips to the Coast… a place we love to show off as a wonderful place to be. Our economy is threatened by this unbridled wildcat drilling with no protections for mistakes. This is wrong.

What if the spill happened off the coast of the Everglades? How would you explain to the people and the creatures that it was okay? What would you say if another wetland area was sentenced to die all for the oil/gas industry and it’s earnings for shareholders that didn’t work for the money?

We are talking about people who just live their lives.

So Your Honor, I ask that you reconsider allowing the deep drilling moratorium to stand so that we, as a country, our engineers and planners, can get a handle on what is needed just in case another Deepwater Horizion event does occur.

It is only fair for those who have no part in these “explorations/exploitations” of our lands and seas by corporations that are only looking for treasure. We LIVE in these places, and our lives have meaning. Our lives, connections, history… the feeling of belonging to a place. These things must matter. Otherwise, the United States is a sham. It will be seen as a shell for money to do what it will and American citizens will have to grin and bear what comes their way. And just maybe will be seen as, “Since you bought us in 1804, we are your chattel”. Ever think about that one?

This is not the Country that I gave many years of my life to defend. Not the Nation that I swore to protect. It is definitely NOT what I was taught, and steeped in, to protect.

The true treasure to be found here is in living in the cycle of Life here and the coming of the tides.

And I will stand for the Gulf Coast and you have much to answer for concerning your decision about the drilling moratorium. Who is the real American Sir? That which places themselves amongst the people, or that which is tangled up with business?

It is your turn to answer.

June 22, 2010

Rising Tide Convention V

Filed under: Federal Flood,Katrina,New Orleans,NOLA Bloggers,Rebuilding,Rising Tide — Morwen Madrigal @ 12:32 pm

Since we are coming up on the 5th anniversary of the Bitch Named Katrina(sponsored by Nature)  and the Federal Flood (engineered by the Corpse of Engineers),  it’s time for the Rising Tide to do it’s thing. This year it will be at The Howlin’ Wolf.

Hie thee to the Rising Tide for more information.

June 19, 2010

“Hold Your Positions”

‘Tis a command given by thousands of battlefield commanders for centuries. It’s also appropriate with many things Civil in the 21st Century.

I was taught what the American Culture’s Promise: equality ad the helping each one of us to have a decent life. Nothing in those teachings mention Oligarchs. I don’t remember edicts that all of us had to fit the same Religious profile.Color of your skin? Screw that.

It was about a Philosophy of being Equals and living together in this land, not “Survival of the Most Rapacious”.

This little soul believed. Still do.

I gave service to the Country. I have worked hard for many factions of this Nation that have been not been able to to become part of the Equality promised: Race issues, Women’s, LGB, Trans, Environment… Let’s just say any one or group that has been harmed by the excesses of the Money/Power crowd. I will always fight in the ways I can.

I stand and hold my position. And there is any show of weakness on the opponent’s side that will allow advantage, fucking steamroller them… ADVANCE the position.

We would accept the “choices” that the ruling Paradigm presents us? If enough of us would when voting just wrote in the Other space, “Fuck all the above”, we could become a majority vote and then the process of elections would start again until those who are truly the kind of folk we know that will be OUR Representatives appear on those ballots. Vote THEM in.

Big Bid’ness would shit the proverbial brick. (“You don’t want my campaign contribution?”. “No, we don’t take bribes”.)

Even if those things happened, all of us would still have to exercise due diligence against any inroads from the enemy. And Power and Money are the Enemy of the People. Never forget that.

Hold your position, and know that down here in the Swamps will be doing the Swamps will be doing the same. (Yes Francis Marion and Jean Lafitte are heroes of mine)

June 14, 2010

Burn The Wetlands?

Filed under: Coastal Restoration — Morwen Madrigal @ 2:43 pm

It’s a sick thought, but maybe a way to regenerate our oil-soaked wetlands.

First the BP spill must be quelled, Second, the birds must head back North as is their wont. Third, we need to get through the hurricane season.

Then we burn the oil-affected wetlands and start building up the land and seed the plants for the coming year. It will cost mucho bucks, but Hell, BP has said they would cover the bills.

We will also need to save as much sealife that we can right now. This will be the rebuilding of a major ecosystem. It won’t be an easy task… it will take 3 or 4 years to come to fruition.

Here on the Coast we will have to suffer through that time, but if all works right, the environment will be similar to what we had before BP fucked us over. (here in NOLA we KNOW what being fucked-over is about)

And our country must ban deep-sea drilling until the industry can prove that they can deal with mis-haps.

We OWE it to our fellow creatures that are dying because of our mistake. They didn’t create this murder, Humans did. It is our Culture’s mea culpa…

This can be set right if we get our minds straight about what must be done.

June 10, 2010

BP Can Fuck Off and Die

Filed under: New Orleans — Morwen Madrigal @ 6:10 pm

I understand the importance of BP to the UK. Much of their pension payments come from what used to be the Anglo-Iranian oil company. Our Nation overthrew a government to insure that the Brits could hold onto their treasure, hence BP.

My ancestry is not British. I am a Celt on one side and the frakking Frisians, Anglo-Saxons and the Normans wiped out most of my tribes. This is why I don’t care if the UK takes a major hit when us Americans (we kicked your asses twice) take over your money machine BP.

I don’t care at all.

The little multinational named BRITISH Petroleum has played fast and loose with the rules when it came to oil drilling.

Our home, our way of Life, our dreams and the gift we wished to give to our children is being destroyed. We are being sterilized for the common good. Our World is being destroyed for money gains.

America is also to blame. “Who cares about those swamp dwellers?”. “Can’t they learn to live in a suburb like we do?”. “Why don’t they eat Veelveta and Spam like us?”. “Why do they hold processions at the drop of a hat?”.

The answer is that we are not Americans. We were bought by the U.S., and for the two centuries since then we have been mis-used.

Take our Port’s usage, drill our Coast to fuel your SUVs and your wasteful lifestyle and carve up our wetlands, our storm protections, in order to take Timmy to ballet practice and Susan to her soccer games.

America has abused the folks on the Coast to engage in their suburban “fantasies”. WE bear the brunt of those excesses. Our World is being destroyed for Amerika.

I don’t give a fuck if you are upset by my words. You should really see what is going in my soul right now. I have hatred for the grossly obese mooks driving their SUVs every where since no car can hold them. I hate shareholders that demand that every cent that can be milked come into their coffers.

I hate those who demand and aren’t willing to do for themselves.

And I despise those who believe we must be sacrificed in order to keep their lifestyles intact.

Our Carbon footprint is in the top 1% of those seeking to live a Greener life. Where do you stand?

Are you the solution or the cause of the problem?

These are things to ponder, because what happens to us Coasties is another dog & pony show that will visit YOU.

Then you will be pissed, and no one will be able to come to your aid.

An old axiom: “As ye sow, so shall thee reap”. Amerika, it’s time.

June 6, 2010

I Love My Swamps

Filed under: Wetlands — Morwen Madrigal @ 1:11 pm

This is a land where you can walk and sink up to your ankles in muck (yes, even in your backyard). There are bugs aplenty and the skeeters will swarm you to suck your blood away. There are coral snakes that wait for you to walk under their branch and then bite you. Moccasins will chase you in the waterways. Gators will try to knock your little boat over in order to have a snack.

Just another day in the swamps.

It’s been decades since I lived through those experiences. I don’t dare take those I love and respect into those places again. I grew up in these magical realms, they didn’t. (you don’t let your hands drag in the water from a canoe in the bayou… might wind up losing them)

The plethora of Life is so extensive. Move some vegetation and there is yet another world. Everything is alive, just like in the NW forests. You feel the pulse. You also begin to realize that you are not the ne plus ultra… you are just a part of the Whole, and a small part at that.

I’ve been half-way around the World twice. I’ve wandered through jungles and run into many strange critters (the Monitor lizard freaked me out). Swam in many different waters and played with the dolphins, but the the grey whale surfacing next to me to breathe was a shock. The Teton Wilderness during a blizzard taught me to respect the Bull Moose and his mate’s territory as we were trying to set up an emergency camp to survive the storm (still feel the effects of frostbite to this day).

Have also faced down bears and wolves. (not a great cat though, and that’s okay by me)

Though I love so many places, I still love my swamps. Don’t visit anymore, but I know they are there… Life unbridled unlike the measured form of existence that is my lot.

This is why I am so concerned about the BP spill. I don’t want that part of me to die off, to be killed by the hubris of Humanity. We are only a small part of Life.

This World is not ours to rape and pillage. We as Humans must learn to see the “Other” as having a right to BE, to exist, even if it vexes Human desires. It’s their World too.

I’m doing my best to walk softly on the great blue spaceship that everything inhabits. My life has no value without the presence of the “Others”.

Human culture must change. After all, we are just another species of animals sharing the space.

May 20, 2010

BP is killing my World

Filed under: New Orleans — Morwen Madrigal @ 1:54 pm

I have been using Facebook for the last many months.  This BP (yes you bastards I named you) oil spill  is the Fourth Battle for New Orleans.

We here in the swamps are being destroyed by your habits. We have been bled dry for “what you want”. Our wetlands, our protection from storms, were destroyed for your enjoyment.

Now our shores are starting to become coated with oil. Our World is Is being trashed for oil hungry mooks.

When will the day come when folks  understand that we are not sacrificial lambs for your B/S lifestyles?

May 11, 2010

I Miss My Boat

Filed under: Coastal Restoration,Gulf Coast,Oil & Gas — Morwen Madrigal @ 2:25 pm

Decades ago I owned a boat. No one knew that because it was one of my secret places to just be. (I had other activities that was about me, but I never told a soul about them either). My boat was of wood, and she was 16 foot long.  I hid Her in the swamps. She was my safe place.

Some days I would get down to Her and cast off into the Gulf.  I’d anchor and just have my lunch, read my books and be rocked to sleep by her gentle movements with the waves. The birds landing on Her made Life very interesting. One day I had 3 pelicans sitting on the side… They liked my French bread and left before they swamped me. And I fell asleep with the rocking of the boat.

I’d fish and then let them go. I just wanted to be a part of the ecosystem.  I needed to feel as a part of the Whole that folks down here lived with. Me and my boat rocking on the waves.

I can’t do that anymore. I wish to have a 16 foot schooner to sail again, but how can I sail the lake and the Gulf knowing what BP did? Will I be able to smell the waters?  Can I sleep rocking on oil-infested waters?

Can I rest knowing what has happened? Will the birds come to my little boat and see me as an ally or the enemy?

We have known since the 70′s of the dangers that our current culture presented.  Many of us warned about the possibilities. We have told you what must be done.

You didn’t listen, and I can’t sleep in my little boat anymore.

I’m Crying Tears of Oil

I’m watching the projections of the BP oil spill’s reach and I’m seeing visages of times along the Coast. I see my extended families standing on their 40 ft boats happy with their harvest of the Gulf’s bounty. I see me and my Grand Dad catching crabs from the pier. I feel the nets as I pull them in from the boat. I feel the weight of the oyster tongs.

I feel the rod jerking as I hooked another King Mackeral. I feel the slickness of mud between my toes as I harvested mudbugs. I smell the air and remember.

I remember the night fishing when we held gigs and torches wading through the waters. You had to see the seabed and decide if it was a soft-shell crab or a flounder. I see my Grand Dad’s face as I handed him a bag of soft-shells. I was also afraid of sea snakes.

I’m afraid that I will not see those moments again in my lifetime.

My little World, our World, has been sacrificed for the oil greed of Amerika. 20,000 miles of canals dug through our wetlands and a no questions asked drilling policy. We stand naked before the storms that will come, and our greatest gift to the Nation is being poisoned. And it was all for oil.

I have had a minimal carbon footprint for decades. I have preached for many years about the ways of this culture. I have done my best and now the oil that many of you so depend upon is technically at my door.

My World is dying.

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