There’s a time that happens once a year, on July 25, which is the last day of the Mayan calendar. On that day all is supposed to pause to give our world time to reset. It’s a day which realigns the 13 moon calendar and the solar year. And it’s aligned with the feminine aspect of nature, a day of reverence and respect for all life, dedicated to Notime, a day out of time.
Much has happened to our world, and to the United States during the past week, but what stands out in many minds is an event that happened in our congress on July 23. On that day in Congress Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez drew the world’s and the nation’s attention to the struggle which has plagued the world for 5,000 years, a disease called misogyny. Not only did her speech highlight that every time a man uses such epithets directed towards a woman, he gives permission for other men to show the same behavior to other women, regardless of whether or not they may have wives or daughters (obviously all had mothers at one time) but she also called upon the women in Congress, including the Speaker of the House and the former chair of the DNC to corroborate from their own similar experiences.
AOC drew the line at accepting what was not even close to an apology by the offending, offensive Rep Yoho of Florida.
As a woman, I cannot remember being moved quite so profoundly by anything ever happening in our Congress. In my view misogyny is at the very root of all that ails us as a violent, war-making, unequal, patriarchal society. Its cultural history is a long one and dates from the approximate year of 3,000 B.C. when for the next 1,000 years or so, the Kurgans (named for their grave mounds) invaded and swept across the face of Europe, raping, killing and pillaging all in their wake. We know this from the many skeletons discovered with skull fractures located in the back of their heads from wounds they sustained as they tried to escape. What is critical to keep in mind is that the society first inhabiting Europe was egalitarian, and possessed no weapons. Even more significantly, they were hunter-gatherers, and practiced some early forms of agriculture, whereas the Kurgans were stockmen, herded animals requiring ever increasing grazing lands, and subsisting on animal by-products: meat and milk and skins. It is interesting to speculate that the early mythical account of Cain (the farmer) and Abel (the shepherd) may refer to exactly this pre-historic struggle in the mythic terms of a civilization that had yet to avail itself of writing and the discourse of history.
Normally, I consider this newsletter separate from my work as a published writer, never referring to my works in a commercial context, but today I avail myself of an exception because if we are to heal and if there is to be any change in future, we must confront where we have come from. I sent Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez a copy of my book, Apology to a Whale: Words to Mend a World. I accompanied it with a letter stating that in my view, misogyny is the central problem plaguing our world of endless war, violence, and contempt, dismissal and exclusion of women, and asking her to lend it public articulation. I included a summary of its contents:
“Have you ever wondered how Europe, a small peninsula with only 80,000,000 inhabitants, was able to practice genocide and create so much havoc in the New World which had 100,000,000 inhabitants at the time Europeans first appeared here?
“With abundant research over a lifetime, Archeologist Marija Gimbutas has proved from excavations of gravesites all over Europe that originally its civilization was pacific and egalitarian, honoring women, men and homosexuals and transsexuals equally, and burying all without distinction or much fanfare.
“But roughly in 3,000 B.C. an invasion of Kurgans, a war-like people, came from the Eastern Steppe of what is now Russia. They knew warfare, carried weapons, used wheeled wagons, worshipped a sky god, and practiced patriarchy, misogyny, and hierarchy; their cycle of life ended not in rebirth, but in death. Worst of all, they spoke proto-Indo-European, the language from which all but 4 of our European languages descend. Benjamin Lee Whorf is the linguist who first proposed that Language is the river whose current runs through the ages, and perpetuates the world view we happen to hold.
“Within a thousand years the Kurgan invasion had swept through Europe to the Atlantic, killing, raping, and pillaging all in its wake. 1492 can be seen as an extension of that invasion.”
What is most tragic is that the fashion among both men and compliant women has been to discredit Gimbutas, all her years of painstaking archeological work, and book upon book of faithful illustrations of grave offerings c. 5,000 B.C. perhaps because, rare among archeologists, she was a woman. It may be time in an age of COVID to give her voice.
I want to conclude this weeks’ newsletter with statistics, sent me by a friend, which speak for themselves:
The countries most affected by COVID and their leaders:
Spain Pedro Sanchez
UK Boris Johnson
Italy Giuseppe Conde
France Emmanuel Macron
The countries recognized as managing the crisis best and their leaders:
Germany Angela Merkel
Taiwan Tsai Ing-wen
Iceland Katrin Jacobsdóttir
Finland Sanna Mirella Márin
New Zealand Jacinda Ardern
Norway Ema Solberg
Denmark Mette Fredericksen
Every one of them women in case you might be wondering.
UN calls for temporary basic income for world’s poorest 2.7 billion people as ‘lifelines’ amid pandemic.
In Venezuela paralyzed companies rescued by an army of volunteer workers.
Israel draws up secret list of officials who may stand trial at international court for war crimes.
Cuba defeated the pandemic, now prepared to face economic crisis.
‘Because U.S. can’t be trusted’ to uphold basic human rights, Canadian court strikes down bilateral asylum agreement.
Stop 5 G passes in Hawaii which will be 5 G free.
‘Shut It Down, Start Over, Do It Right’: medical experts urge renewed U.S. lockdown to stop COVID spike.
In recent days, governors from at least 18 states, including Michigan, have backtracked on plans to loosen restrictions due to outbreaks.
ACLU secures release of U.S. resident unlawfully detained under “Patriot” Act.
U.S. prisoner of never-ending war with never-ending sentence released.
‘War is not a game’: AOC to file amendment banning U.S military from recruiting on Twitch.
Kumeyaay Nation protest stops construction on border wall.
Blackfeet federation seeks permanent protection for Badger Two Medicine area in Lewis-Clark National Forest..
Omar and Sanders lead bill to end destructive taxpayer subsidies for fossil fuels.
Activists ramp up pressure on other insurers after Swiss company ditches climate-wrecking Trans Mountain Pipeline.
Appeals court rules Bayou Bridge pipeline company ‘trampled’ landowners’ rights.
States sue over ruling limiting them from blocking pipeline projects.
Kesha Davalos Grijalva and dozens of others have been camping outside the Aurora immigration jail for over a month demanding for the release of everyone inside, including her husband.
Russia bans Wi-Fi and smartphones for distance learning.
In Massachusetts activist camp at State House for giving undocumented immigrants driver’s licenses.
In Virginia undocumented residents will be able to drive legally starting in January. (Let’s hope they don’t starve between now and January.)
Justice Department report finds systemic excessive use of force by prison guards.
As protesters sue to vindicate their constitutional rights, a University of Chicago study documents over 120 incidents of police brutality in LA, Minneapolis, DC, and other cities and towns across the U.S. such as bodily injury from the firing of rubber bullets, and use of tear gas
LA County OKs COVID ‘health councils’ to watch worker safety.
On July 20, in nationwide protests labor and climate justice join the Black Lives Matter Movement in solidarity as tens of thousands walk off job.
In D.C. protesters use ‘midnight yoga’ to cope with police violence.
BLM Chicago sues to prevent occupation by #45’s paramilitaries.
Western States Center, Unitarian of Portland, two state reps, and ACLU listed as plaintiffs in lawsuit alleging federal govt. has violated protesters’ 10th amendment rights.
Portland moms aided by dads with leaf blowers form human shield to protect protesters from federal agents.
Federal agents retreat to Portland base as protesters control streets.
Judge Andrew Napolitano rules actions in Portland of federal agents are unlawful, unconstitutional, an harmful.
U.S. judge blocks federal agents from arresting Portland observers.
Philadelphia top prosecutor is prepared to arrest federal agents if and when they turn up.
Philly marches for ‘Justicia para Vanessa” who disappeared from Ft. Hood after complaining she was being sexually harassed.
Twenty-one state attorneys general file suit to stop ‘illegal’ effort by #45 to skew census for political gain.
Public health expert denounce new CDC document pushing school re-openings as ‘politically driven’ and ‘irresponsible.’
Teachers sue Florida governor for order to reopen schools in defiance of ‘Basic human needs for health and safety.’
Teachers union plans strategy to resist unsafe school re-openings.
Educators plan to revitalize #RedforEd Movement as Hillsborough Co., Fla, rally against school re-openings.
Anti-racist demos continue in Minneapolis, Louisville, Ky. and Portland among other cities.
Hunger strike begins amid U.S. racism protests in Kentucky over Breonna Taylor’s murder-by-cop.
Ohio Speaker Larry Householder (R) and four others were arrested on Tuesday on charges stemming from a $60 million bribery case to keep crumbling Davis-Besse NPP open brought by U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio David DeVillers.
House votes to block funding for nuclear testing.
House passes NO-BAN Act to stop #45 Muslim bam, and ensures that immigration detainees have access to counsel.
Great American Outdoors Act passes through Congress guaranteeing fixing maintenance backlog in national parks and Indian education, preserving water quality, and creating jobs among other benefits.
Democrats demand #45 reverse ‘irresponsible’ order as states lose access to crucial COVID data.
Housing rules could force newly released prisoners into homelessness.
Single mothers and children take over abandoned public buildings in Philadelphia.