Monday, May 30, 2011

Big Brothers Big Sisters--Gender Discrimination

About a year ago, I thought of filling my thirtysomething void by mentoring a child with Big Brother Big Sister. I pondered the idea for a few years. As a social worker, I worked with children in a number of settings. I put in years of service at Head Start, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, and eventually worked in adolescent psychiatry.

So, after years of putting it off, I began my warm-hearted research on how to become a big brother to a child in need. I googled Big Brother Big Sister and began navigating the cheerful multicultural photos and spirited messages on how I could change the life of a child while shaping the future of America. What could be more wholesome than Big Brother Big Sister? It conjures up all things wonderful about America's family values: reaching out to others, helping, volunteerism, empowerment of the vulnerable, making a difference, gender discrimination of men. Huh? Discrimination? Well, of straight men. The cross-gender Matching Policy basically says that a woman can mentor a boy, but a man cannot be matched with or mentor a girl. The Policy continues with an odd, illogical twist in the Non-Discrimination Policy which allows homosexuals to mentor children of the same sex if the parent approves.

So does this mean a gay man can't be matched with a little girl (because he is a man) but he can be matched with a little boy? Talk about logical fallacies! Let me be clear. I am not against homosexuals mentoring children. I am for anyone loving, mentoring, and edifying a child towards great things regardless of what private parts are between their legs. I have never seen a more clear case of sexism. It is unfortunate, especially in light of the benefits little girls stand to receive from good male mentorship. Benefits that will shape their experiences with men for a lifetime. If Big Brother Big Sister is implying, concluding, perpetuating that an adult male will sexually molest a girl, they are sensationalizing a horrific act by inciting propaganda that bears the likeness and hype of shark attacks. This fear creates more alienation and weirdness between men and children in a paranoid society where men are already absent in the family photo--a family made of girls.

Personally, my heart was broken when I read the policy of Big Brother Big Sister. I always imagined mentoring a girl. My background is eclectic. I can mentor traditional and nontraditional gender roles. I grew up hunting, fishing, and playing football. I also love Broadway, ballet, and poetry. I can fix a car and decorate my house. Many of my bad experiences with women are directly related to their bad experiences with men, whether it be a ex-boyfriend, stranger, or absent father. As a male, I wanted to make a positive difference in the life of a little girl who might one day be a wife to a husband. More men might step up to the plate if we remove the bogeyman, and give men a chance.

Read the inflammatory words in the Policy of a Big Brother Big Sister regional office. Through my online research, every regional office I found follows a similar version.

Friday, May 13, 2011

99 cent Book! 4th of July Sale!

In celebration of our great USA and the right to read and write controversial books through our First Amendment, eBook Exhuming Juliet is on sale for ONLY 99 CENTS now through the 4th of July! No special device required. All you need to read is FREE. Simply download the entire book on your computer or mobile device in seconds for less than one George Washington!

Feel free to share and repost this incredible offer!  

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Scholarly Review of My Books

It is an honor to share a feature article and remarkable scholarly review of my books by Dr. Penne J. Laubenthal, Swampland.com  Swampland is referred to as the “field guide to the cultural American South.” It covers all things Southern, including music, sports, food, travel, place, myth, history, literature, commerce, art, film, and architecture. In the RiverVue section, Laubenthal’s voice goes beyond the many facets of literature. She captures a unique Southern slice of life. Her pieces are a joy to read. I am pleased to share this review with all of you.

The title Crumpled Paper Dolls set the scene for many of the poems in the first volume. Women, in both volumes, are like dolls---paper or porcelain. They crumple or they shatter. They are like little girls, appearing to be innocent and promising eternal love, but are actually Lolitas (as in the poem "Mother Fries Chicken"), at first tempting and then betraying.
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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Poetry Readings & Writing Tips!

Great news! My YouTube channel is up and running! Be the first to watch me read my poetry and discuss all things writing. Subscribe, friend me, like, and leave a comment on my new YouTube channel! Share your favorite videos :) See you at YouTube.com/aNewOrLeANspoet!