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  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    I feel for you, Pax. This is why cost of living/employment isn't the only thing to consider when moving... the culture where you live is as important, unless you desire no human connection!
    I feel like this is the stuff that really can wear you down. It's a stressor, as much as financial stress or illness, in my book.

    Murienn, when I was in Beaufort for DS's boot camp graduation, I went into the Democratic party headquarters. This was in 2004, during the campaign between Kerry and Bush. I was feeling very out of sorts/agitated just being in a very conservative environment, and I was not looking forward to being on the base (I got over that part, a long time ago, since my son is pretty much his same, weird self). The woman in there was wonderful, and I talked with her for like 30 minutes. I wanted a Kerry button to wear on myself at the graduation, in part to make my views known. They didn't have any, so she gave me her own button, which I wore on my purse for the whole week. Have you ever thought about connecting with that group?
    I could try, but I'm not terribly political. I have my own beliefs, and they tend to be a lot more liberal than the democratic party. And I don't follow politics much except for clean energy policies and the like. It's a good idea, though. I recently joined a vegan/veggie group (in Savannah). Problem there is the vegans are really self-congratulatory about it. I like eggs, and clarified butter, don't really fit in. I just want a group of people to hang with that accepts me and doesn't try to lecture me if I mention my love for Palak Paneer.
    Last edited by Muirenn; 01-13-2016 at 06:11 AM.
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  2. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muirenn View Post
    It's about 5 hours south of me, I think.

    You are at least close to St. Augustine. That's a beautiful town. Ever been there?
    We've been there several times, it's lovely!

    Like you I lean farther left than the party, I'm interested in primarily LGBT issues and while there is some action on that here, it's very subtle. Coming from a major university town I'm used to huge amounts of activity on the issue, and also tremendous diversity. Here, I actually find myself driving through what locals refer to as "the bad part of town" just so I can even momentarily connect with people of another race.

    I'm still job hunting, since 55 is too young to be done unless you're well off, my hope is I'll find something with a decent salary so maybe we can keep this place for the winters and escape to civilization for another part of the year.

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  3. #18
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    Columbus, IN
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    Sometimes I find myself expressing opinions so I don't "lose" myself. At least at work (where I seem to spend a pretty substantial amount of time) I'm surrounded by the conservative, old white male network. I sometimes voice my opinion so they KNOW I'm different, so they stop assuming that I'll just adopt their opinion, and so I remind myself that these aren't my values. When we have disagreements I rarely win, but it makes me feel better (and I feel less like I "lost" when decisions don't go my way) if I make sure that I've expressed my opinion. Other times I'll express my opinion (at least when we're making decisions) because I feel very vehement about something and I feel that change is a process and it can't start if I don't at least speak up. While I might lose the point, the next time the discussion is a little bit easier and eventually I might win.

  4. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pax View Post
    Here, I actually find myself driving through what locals refer to as "the bad part of town" just so I can even momentarily connect with people of another race.
    I spend time each week in some of the more poverty stricken areas of south central los angeles having conversations and making meaningful connections while either doing community based non-profit work or my photography. It’s some of the most satisfying time I spend! It has touched many parts of my life and given me a sense of being part of and doing meaningful community work in a holistic and caring way.
    ‘The negative feelings we all have can be addictive…just as the positive…it’s up to
    us to decide which ones we want to choose and feed”… Pema Chodron

  5. #20
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    Montreal, QC
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    my question is why do you express it? Why not?

    Are you hoping to change someone's views:
    Depending on discussion, maybe! Or give them food for thought. They may seem to brush off an idea but sometimes, in the back of their head the little mouse is spinning. i.e. I used to be very involved in the fight against puppy mills. Did a lot of sensitization, booths, etc. Show them what this is all about and how as a community, we can turn things around. It took years of frustration. I had to get away from it as it started affecting my life (I was "just" a volunteer) and others kept the fight and it paid off in Quebec. Lots of petstores now don't get their pets from mills, but come now from shelters. So yes, I will voice and do what I have to do when I know my fight is worth it. Even if only one person out of 500 walk the talk, it is a won battle. Not the war, but better for this major problem.

    I always try to use the positive approach and would never want to take down someone who is not on my side. But I can be pushy and come up with very valid reasons to prove my point. If I am unsure, I will do my homework and come back later, if still needed.

    Would I get into a conversation if not ask? It depends of the subject.

    I ask because recently I've been subjected to others uninvited/unwelcome opinions and it got me thinking about why they felt the need to share their thoughts and opinions, what they hoped to gain from it. Why they believe their opinion has any relevance.
    Helene
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  6. #21
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    I just realized I hadn't answered my own questions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pax View Post
    I understand everyone has an opinion, I also understand it is your "right" to express it; my question is why do you express it? Are you hoping to change someone's views, find common ground, validate your process, degrade someone else, create an open dialog?
    Why - because words, chosen carefully, can have transformative powers on both the speaker and the listener.

    Generally I hope to find common ground or failing that, to educate, to create an open dialog.

    I'm not a fan of arguing and confrontation;

    - In person I have enough mental quickness, verbal skills, and strength of personality to decimate most of the people I encounter. I enjoyed that when I was younger and going toe to toe with a bigot, now I'm tired, now I want peace.

    - Arguing online is pointless unless you know the person IRL, you don't know their motivations, their true thoughts/beliefs, and many times you end up getting involved in a debate with someone who has no real interest in the topic, they just enjoy argument.

    Electra Townie 7D

  7. #22
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    Murienn, I laughed at your last sentence. Geez, if you can't be tolerant for one's love of Palak Paneer, then it's over! Seriously, liberal dogma can be just as intolerant as conservative rubbish. And, people do get quite upset about food these days. I freaked out one of my friends (the one I don't really like anymore) when I announced that i had stopped eating beef/pork/veal. I still eat poultry and fish, but my diet is more and more vegetarian. Now, every conversation about food has to mention my choices. I am not doing this for political reasons, so if someone served me meat, and I was starving, I'd eat it. Well, at least they are in Savannah, a place I love.
    I am lucky that in my career, and especially my particular workplace, is very liberal. The clinic admin person, who I often eat lunch with, seems like a regular person, but I have heard her spew horrible vitriol about the president. If I ever hear anything like that now, I leave the room. The teachers on my teams at my last school were very liberal. The only beef I had with some of the other people is that all they did was talk about their family and complain about their husbands. I can't stand that. I am actually very careful to not talk about politics, with anyone at work. You never know.
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  8. #23
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    Crankin - remembering the very liberal place my old profession was, I'm dusting off my mental health resume and considering giving it another go. It's been nine years since I left the profession but I imagine I could still be a decent case manager. Might even consider getting my MSW if the agency is a good one... at 55 I still need to work a while so it might be worth it.

    Electra Townie 7D

  9. #24
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    My agency hires case managers for people living independently in supported situations or group homes. It is not clinical work, but very rewarding none the less. Some of them have master degrees and eventually become a therapist at centers like where I work. I am an LMHC, so I don't know the specifics about MSW programs, but I'd say, unless the pay difference between a bachelors and masters level case worker is great, or, you eventually want to become a clinician, don't go back to school. On the other hand, I went back to school at your age. I think the difference between a MSW and a degree in clinical mental health counseling is that my training is all clinical; there are no other tracks. We take our licensing exam as soon as we graduate and then it's just a matter of getting your hours, to be fully licensed (along with the internship hours during school). MSWs seem to have to go through 2 stages, first pass the LSW test, then work more and do the LICSW hours and test. And, if you stay in community mental health as a licensed clinician, the pay is not great, unless you find one of the rare places that pays salaries instead of FFS. This is why all of the younger people I went to school with have their own practices now. I don't want anything to do with the business part of that, especially the insurance part, so I am lucky this is a second "give back" career for me. I imagine there is opportunity in Florida, for both case workers and clinicians, because as opposed to where I live, there aren't as many people with the training. It sounds like a good plan, especially to connect with like minded people.
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  10. #25
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    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    I worked eleven years with mentally ill homeless adults, everything from crisis intervention to housing development. In IL I was listed by the state as an MHP (mental health professional) which is bachelors level with something like 1000 hours of supervised clinical work. Don't think FL has anything like that, seems to be straightforward - HS diploma = case aid/healthcare tech, Bachelors = case manager, Masters = counselor and with some licensing, therapist.

    I'd prefer not to return to school as the time and cost would not pay off before retirement, but I would enjoy the more intense clinical aspect.

    Electra Townie 7D

  11. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    Murienn, I laughed at your last sentence. Geez, if you can't be tolerant for one's love of Palak Paneer, then it's over! Seriously, liberal dogma can be just as intolerant as conservative rubbish. And, people do get quite upset about food these days. I freaked out one of my friends (the one I don't really like anymore) when I announced that i had stopped eating beef/pork/veal. I still eat poultry and fish, but my diet is more and more vegetarian. Now, every conversation about food has to mention my choices. I am not doing this for political reasons, so if someone served me meat, and I was starving, I'd eat it. Well, at least they are in Savannah, a place I love.
    I am lucky that in my career, and especially my particular workplace, is very liberal. The clinic admin person, who I often eat lunch with, seems like a regular person, but I have heard her spew horrible vitriol about the president. If I ever hear anything like that now, I leave the room. The teachers on my teams at my last school were very liberal. The only beef I had with some of the other people is that all they did was talk about their family and complain about their husbands. I can't stand that. I am actually very careful to not talk about politics, with anyone at work. You never know.
    I really love Savannah and Charleston. But the drive from where I live isn't pleasant. Dark, I can take I-95 for the second half of the Savannah trip, and no interstate at all to Charleston. The penalty for living on an island, but I'm so isolated.

    The first group I went to was actually a vegan activism group in Bluffton, Hilton Head, so still a decent drive but not as far, they had pot-luck meet-ups and meetings at restaurants with a lot of meet-free options. They did ask that you bring only vegan food to the potlucks. Understandable as it's a pain to have to avoid most of the food. But they also 'ask' that you eat completely vegan at the restaurant. Huh? How does that hurt them if I have a little butter? They had a special vegan menu for our group (only 5 of us including the 2 organizers showed up. That should tell them something). And I wasn't given the chance to make my own decision. I don't mind eating vegan versus vegetarian. But I don't want someone to enforce it.

    Then, they proceeded to verbally bash people they know who ate meat and dairy (and eggs). I spoke up, and told them I ate eggs given to me by a friend who owns a farm and chickens, and also bought the ones from the farmer's market where their live pet laying hen sat there and let you pet her. Those eggs are vastly different than the cage-free ones you buy in the grocery store. The shells are very thick due to lack of pesticides in the environment, etc. I didn't mention that I also buy cage-free eggs in the store if I run out since the farmer's market is only on Saturday, and my friend only occasionally has eggs for me. But, point is, going all the way in the opposite direction also puts stress on the environment. A lot of vegan proteins are highly processed, like tempeh and tofu, and require a lot of resources to produce.

    Farming is one of the greatest sources of green house gas emissions, from nitrogen release to interfering with carbon sequestration in the soil when the fields are plowed. And cultivated land reduces natural habitat for wild animals and plants, not to mention pesticide buildup in the soil, and it's inevitable leakage into the water-table and streams into the rest of the ecosystem. I did point this out when they started extolling the virtues of a completely plant-based lifestyle. Well, okay, but agriculture is not actually good for the planet. Especially mono-cultural traditional agriculture. And...anyway. They want protecting the environment to be a part of their dogma, but they don't know what they are talking about. Yeah. Don't think the organizer liked me much. I actually had no intention of saying much, but the two other guests asked about my work (environmental) and school (sustainability), so I ended up being cross-questioned as I ate. I did really like them. Especially the woman. Her husband seemed a bit easily led. OTOH, I think he'd listen to me too. But I wasn't actually trying to change anyone's mind. That guy wanted direction. Got the impression the woman didn't like the vitriolic attitude, either. One of the organizers was actually bashing her mother, a woman in her 70's, for believing that milk was a necessary protein-source. When I saw the 'main' organizer at the Savannah Veg and Vegan group, which she attended as a guest, she told another person loudly that this was my first meetup, and wasn't it interesting that I showed up for Thanksgiving potluck (it was November 15th, and I brought a huge bowl of BBQ Tempeh with shitake mushrooms and vegetables. Totally Vegan, organic, and CLEAN. Took over 16 hours to marinate and slow cook). Blergh.

    Okay. Rant over. I wouldn't mind trying again, but don't have much time with school, anyway.
    Last edited by Muirenn; 01-13-2016 at 11:18 AM.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

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  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pax View Post
    We've been there several times, it's lovely!

    Like you I lean farther left than the party, I'm interested in primarily LGBT issues and while there is some action on that here, it's very subtle. Coming from a major university town I'm used to huge amounts of activity on the issue, and also tremendous diversity. Here, I actually find myself driving through what locals refer to as "the bad part of town" just so I can even momentarily connect with people of another race.

    I'm still job hunting, since 55 is too young to be done unless you're well off, my hope is I'll find something with a decent salary so maybe we can keep this place for the winters and escape to civilization for another part of the year.
    I can honestly say that for the first 10-15 years I lived here, I didn't see anyone who appeared to be a part of the LGBT community. Doesn't mean they weren't here, of course. Now, I definitely see couples around. So, better. But that isn't saying much.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

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  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    The only beef I had with some of the other people.
    Beef, huh?

    I'm not political enough for it to be an issue. I like science and science related issues, and art and art related...(brain-powered computations?).

    So if someone talks about politics, I enjoy it, but don't feel a lot of concern. And if someone mentions religion, my feelings are actually neutral. Except where the culture associated with a religion is interesting or beguiling to me. And some definitely are. My office is actually liberal compared to other places in this area, that is, less religious. Still too many republicans. But they aren't offensive about their views. And if they do say something I find offending, I definitely speak up.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

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  14. #29
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    Murienn, I don't understand why that woman was snarky about you coming to the Thanksgiving Potluck. Because it's a holiday, and people might have brought good food, like you did? Oy. She sounds in need of my services... this is why I think I am actually more moderate in my beliefs about a lot of things. How can someone bash their own mother for thinking milk is important? A lot of people, not even just older people, think like that. My reasons for drifting toward vegetarianism are strictly for health. I understand the political part of it, but unlike you, I don't know a lot about farming. There is a strong small farming community around here, and while I support many of the local farms during their seasons, some of the other shoppers are so strident when I go to shop, it bothers me. We also have a well known natural foods/health store in West Concord. There are several products I buy there, because it's the only place I can find them, but I go to the farms for produce. The organic produce at this store is so expensive, I just won't buy it. I don't bad mouth the place at all, the owner is very active in the community, and my son (the ex-Marine) worked there in HS, and they were extremely nice to him.
    I remember the drive from Beaufort to Savannah as boring and kind of long. I have never been to Charleston. I hated HHI/Bluffton immensely, although I even went back the year after the boot camp graduation, as we bid on a vacation there and we won a week stay at a condo in the ritzy gated community at the end of the island. This is where we almost got arrested riding our road bikes on the road!
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  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    Murienn, I don't understand why that woman was snarky about you coming to the Thanksgiving Potluck. Because it's a holiday, and people might have brought good food, like you did? Oy. She sounds in need of my services... this is why I think I am actually more moderate in my beliefs about a lot of things. How can someone bash their own mother for thinking milk is important? A lot of people, not even just older people, think like that. My reasons for drifting toward vegetarianism are strictly for health. I understand the political part of it, but unlike you, I don't know a lot about farming. There is a strong small farming community around here, and while I support many of the local farms during their seasons, some of the other shoppers are so strident when I go to shop, it bothers me. We also have a well known natural foods/health store in West Concord. There are several products I buy there, because it's the only place I can find them, but I go to the farms for produce. The organic produce at this store is so expensive, I just won't buy it. I don't bad mouth the place at all, the owner is very active in the community, and my son (the ex-Marine) worked there in HS, and they were extremely nice to him.
    I remember the drive from Beaufort to Savannah as boring and kind of long. I have never been to Charleston. I hated HHI/Bluffton immensely, although I even went back the year after the boot camp graduation, as we bid on a vacation there and we won a week stay at a condo in the ritzy gated community at the end of the island. This is where we almost got arrested riding our road bikes on the road!
    Yes yes and yes! Charleston is actually much further than Savannah. And I despise Hilton Head. Bluffton is just before that, and it is within reasonable driving distance. That is where I was presented with the special vegan menu, even though the restaurant served much more than that.

    The woman who bashed her mother was actually the 'co' organizer (older than the organizer, she should have known better!), not the one who said something to me a couple of weeks later at the Thanksgiving. (It was two different groups, I went to each one once).

    The thing is, I've been a vegetarian off and on since I was 14. And I understand how difficult it can be to do it long-term. Especially in a small town with fewer food options. I could have a lot to contribute to both groups. Even in activism. If people want to help the environment and be kind to animals, they could modify their diets and lifestyles without totally giving everything up. That would save many animal lives and reduce environmental pressures. Their only understanding excluded things that could actually work for larger groups of peoples. And you would think reaching more people would be a goal. Yeah. I just wanted a group of friends. Not Frienemies. Sigh.

    To me, there is a big difference between Liberal, and Democrat.
    Last edited by Muirenn; 01-13-2016 at 12:22 PM.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

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