Things to pray about

pray, follow the stories, contact people who can do something- and should. Donate. I don’t know what every person ought to be doing, but it sure feels like just feeling sick over it is useless.

For full information, see the reports filed by Gentlerespectful parenting.  They are thorough and very well done.

Syesha Mercado,  Tyron Deener, and their two children, who have been legally kidnapped by Florida social workers and police, all of whom should either go to jail or quit their jobs.   I honestly tried hard not to see this story. I am so tired, so emotionally drained and stretched, and fragile from my husband’s garbage and gaslighting.  But I just can’t keep my fingers in my ears and the firewall around heart.  This is horrendous.

Six months ago Syesha took her baby to the hospital to get help with his hydration and nutrition because her milk supply had dropped due to pregnancy and the baby didn’t want to take in enough other fluids beside breast milk. She was proactive, on top of it, seeing help.  Instead she was destroyed. Because the family are vegan and outside the box in so many ways, a doctor with a history of overreacting and calling neglect when there is none agreed that the child needed to be removed. The supposed reason was Syesha had refused a B-12 shot for the baby.  She had not refused – and this is not a pick a side who seems most credible. Syesha has the conversation recorded.  What she asked is that they wait for the baby’s father to be there so it could be explained to both of them together. This was not a dangerous situation.  The child was not going to be medically threatened if the shot was delayed a few days, let alone a few hours, but the authories lied with apparent impunity and the baby was removed.

He is still in foster care.  Last week they removed her ten day old breastfed newborn for the crime of not informing the people who kidnapped her baby that she had another baby.  This is also recorded, and it’s evil.  Pure evil.  Not one person involved in this would still be doing that job if they had an active conscience.   They appear to have massive egos in place of hearts.  It is long past time for Amen ‘Ra to be home.

Taken from the IG of Jenny Taylor- please share, pray, donate if you can, and definitely contact the people involved.

“You will be able to find the whole 4 part series as it releases on my IG @gentlerespectfulparenting and my YouTube Channel Jenny Taylor. I’ve worked with Tyron and @syesha to tell their story and it should make the timeline of the events clear.

2. Please email the following people. You can use this call to action text written by @operationstopcps
“We demand an Investigation, from a third-party, into the illegal removal of Amen’Ra Sba. Further, we demand that the petition be dismissed and Amen’Ra be returned home safely to his parents immediately.”

[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]

You can include a link to this video in your email.

3. Donate to the family’s legal fund. I’ve spoken to an attorney suing the same hospital for false allegations and after their child is returned going up against these giants for justice will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Follow @syesha for all the updates about her children!

#BringRaHome #MedicalKidnapping #SyeshaMercado #Holisticliving #Consciousparenting #Homeschooling #medicalfreedom


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19th Century Black Poet Albery Whitman

Albery Whitman was born into slavery in 1851. He died in 1901. He was orphaned at 12. Freed during the Civil War. He was a handyman, a teacher, a railroad worker, a financial representative, a preacher, and a poet. His poetry was so well known during his lifetime that he was called the Poet Laureate of the Negro Race. His daughters sang and accompanied him on his evangelism circuits. At some point the oldest two girls also had developed a popular vaudeville act which their father allowed them to perform in public (under their mother’s management), although his denomination frowned on vaudeville.. At his death in 1901, the youngest of the four girls was only 1 year old. The other three, with their mother’s help and support, formed a group known as The Whitman Sisters and became the longest running and highest paid group on the Black Vaudeville circuit. The youngest girl eventually was old enough to join them. More about them here.

Before he died, Whitman had published at least three volumes of poetry. Although he was highly popular in his lifetime, he fell out of favour and has seldom been included in anthologies. You can find them online. They seem flowery to me, typical of the romantic era in style, but the topics are different. Often they include themes where black and native American people work together, or to celebrate the people of each race. But it’s hard for me to characterize the whole body of his work. Above my paygrade, for one thing. Mainly, I find thoughtful to read, but not deeply quotable.

This is one of his poems:

Stonewall Jackson

Defiant in the cannon’s mouth,
I see a hero of the South,
Serene and tall;
So like a stonewall in the fray
He stands, that wond’ring legions say:
‘He is a wall.’

He heeded not the fierce onsets
From bristling fields of bayonets;

He heeded not
The thunder-tread of warring steeds,
But holds his men of daring deeds
Right on the spot.

And is it insanity?
Nay, this is but the gravity
Of that vast mind,
That, on his Southland’s altar wrought

And forged the bolts of warrior thought
Of thunder-kind.

An eagle eye, a vulture’s fight,
A stroke leonine in might;
The man was formed
For that resolving, deep inert
Which sprang stupendously alert,
And, sometimes, stormed.

And so, his mount to the charge,
Or led the columns small or large,
The victor rode;
Till over danger’s castle moat,
And in the cannon’s silenced throat,
His charger trode.

And so, with fierce far speed, or near
To right and left and on the rear,
His fury fell
Upon the foe too much to meet.
For Jackson’s soul abhorred retreat,
Except from hell.

But comes the saddest at the last,
As sad as life’s ideal past-
And, oh! how sad!
That, in his pride, the Stonewall fell
By hands of those he loved so well-
The best he had.

How sad that dark and cruel night
Should fold her mantle on the sight
Of those tried, true
And valiant men, who followed where
Their leader went, despising fear
And darkness, too!

But sometimes triumph is subline
The most when on the brink of time,
And his was so;
A shady shore beyond he sees,
And asks for rest beneath its trees,
And it was so.

And do you ask, can he whose sweat
Hath clods of weary slave toil wet,
The praises sing
Of one who fought to forget the chain
That manacles the human brain?
Do such a thing?

I answer, yes, if he who fought,
Fought bravely and believed he ought.
If that can be;
If manhood in the mighty test
Of mankind does its manliest

Then poet songs for him shall ring
And he shall live while poets sing;
And while he lives,
And God forgives,
The great peculiar martial star,
In old Virginia’s crown of war,
Will be her Stonewall, proud and sad,
The bravest that she ever had.

Albery Allson Whitman

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Random Middle of the Night Thoughts

Simone Biles is still in a class of her own, and she has earned the right to call the shots on her career and her participation, especially when people change the rules on her midway. I admire this girl so much.

Abby the Spoon Lady is rocking my night.
Here she is with some other gals doing on eof my favourites- Shady Grave-

I have good days and bad, sometimes good days and bad weeks. Yes still. One does not recover from 37 years of gas-lighting in 2 years of separation while the gas-lighting is still being attempted (successfully with a number of others from what I can see). It’s weird. I am not trying to think of these things but out of nowhere *still* some memory will pop up out of nowhere and I realize another instance where I was just blatantly lied to. It’s not just about the adultery and infidelity and porn. There are financial irregularities (read- theft and dishonesty), and manipulations about all kinds of stuff. I think I will start writing these down when they pop up.

A woman a lot of people admire asked me the first week the garbage started coming out why I was still searching through his phone, hadn’t I learned enough. No. No I hadn’t. That doesn’t even make sense to me. By searching the phone I found other things that had not been confessed to, which meant the apologies and requests for forgiveness were fake af (as foretold. Read AF as ‘As Foretold)- basically I was being told “I’ve done a lot of crap and I’m sorry and I wnant you to forgive me without every knowing what exactly you are forgiving.” That’s rubbish, this is. That’s further manipulative trash.

Here’s John the Revelator from Abby the Spoon Lady. Because she makes me smile.

I put my old beat up couch up for free on market place. It’s been well used, it’s very, very heavy. I made this very clear in my ad, to the point of rudeness. “This couch is free. It’s extremely heavy and you will need help to pick it up. I cannot help you at all. You will need a truck.”
First lady to text me wanted to know if I would hold it for her because her kid with a truck was camping and would be back at the end of the weekend. I said no. She said well, she had no furniture in her living room. I said I was really sorry about that, but the best I coudl do is text her if someody else came and got it first. About six people asked about it. Only one was serious. But she thought she could come get it by herself. First she said she’d be right out Then I reminded her it was very, very heavy, and I would not be able to help at all (I can’t even lift it three inches off the floor to pull a kid’s toy out from underneath, because my muscles are like spaghetti noodles). She said she’d look for help and if it was still there the next day let her know. It was. I did. The couch is still here. And then… the lady who asked me hold it for her because she had no furniure in her living room and her son had the truck… she texted me at 3 in the morning to ask if by any chance I had a truck. Um, nope.

Potato salad with roasted peanuts is one of my favourite snacks at the moment. All those carbs. mmm.

Abby the Soon Lady again:

One of the younger grandchildren is particularly adorable- they all are, but thing is this one is Smol bean, and she likes to cuddle, which melts grownup hearts. She is also, says her youngest uncle, a Menace to Society and she was born on the FBI watch list. She is the wee tot about whom one of her cousins told me two years ago that she was very, very cute, but it was a trap. So picture a tiny, petite, elfin Shirley Temple listening earnestly to a parental explanation of why wear gloves when handling raw meat and other things in the kitchen, and then cheerfully agreeing that yes, we wears duvs to keep da germs away and also we should wear duvs before touching dead bodies, like when peoples kill peoples. She didn’t even flinch. Possibly she was not as sound asleep as believed when a few episodes of Bones or something similar were being watched.

Speaking of airing things and viewing, I really liked the Korean drama Imitation and the spotlight on the idol industry, while managing not to be too heavy.
I binge watched a show from a couple years back called Lie after Lie, or something like that. Ordinarily not my thing unless there’s something extra about it. Very makjang, and for some reason the lead actor spoke almost all his lines in an intense whisper which was frustrating. But there were redeeming elements. For once, there is a happy adoption story- as in, all the relatives of the adopted child simply don’t even care that she’s adopted, they just adore her to bits. That seldom happens in a K-Drama.
Lots of revenge and spiteful, crazed mother-in-law action, some odd direcorial jumps, and a few incomprehensible decisions by varioius characters. But I enjoyed it. I enjoyed it for the form- makjang has its rules and traditions, and this was an interesting story within those rules and traditions. But it definitely isn’t my usual sort of thing.

I’m still very much in the who am I and what do I want and what do I really thing stage of this new life- and all the answers have to include ‘while being the single parent around teh clock five days a week and the occasional weekend with a severely handicapped adult in tow as my constant companioin. I cringe when people ask for my advice because what on earth do I even know? Everything I thought I knew was wrong. Well, not everything, but lots of it.

It’s 3 in the morning and I might be having company in 7 hours, definitely in 7-10 hours and I haven’t washed dishes in 3 days and there are bags of groceries on the floor, and a load in teh washing machine that has now been washed three times.

I have Captain Crunch cereal with peanut butter for breakfast. I have songs to sing and some stuff to write and books to read, and a new-t0-me couch in my living room that makes me happy to look at. I went back to vist it repeatedly at the local second hand store. They marked it down three times and then I bought it on a 25% for people with military ID, which I have, day. I paid a young friend to have her and her huband pick it upa nd bring it to me in their truck. That was after I found out oth the sonsinlaw I thought would be able to help out had sold their trucks- one of them the day before. So I had an anxioius day or so trying to figure out what to do. And then the path cleared and I was glad. It’s an odd couch. To me it was a bit of an Asian feelt. There’s a busy, exotic pattern and it sits about 8 inches off the ground with simple, basic retangular legs, so dust bunnies and soot sprites and versous detritus cannot wash up under there and become its own ecosystem.

I’m reading a biography of King Sejong the Great, Outlaws of the Marsh, one of the Chinese Classics, and a couple others I can’t recall right now. I am playing Wordscapes on my phone like an addict. Or as an addict. Depends who we ask.

And I really need to go grab a bit of sleep.

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War With Korea, 1871, Part VII



On the tenth of June, 1871, at 10 a.m. the expedition of retaliation began.  The Americans had decided to pursue a humane policy of attacking only the forts, not the civilian population or sites.

They moved on, an expedition of two steamlaunches, several ships, 22 boats, several hundred men,  and an array of artillery that included seven howitzers which were landed along with over six-hundred men (105 of them marines).
They shelled the first fort and so withering was the fire that the defenders fled.  When the Americans landed, they discovered:

“The character  of the  shore… proved   to be most unfavorable for  our purpose.  Between  the water  and the  firm  land a broad belt of soft mud, traversed by deep  gullies, had to be passed. The men stepping from the  boats, sank to their  knees, and so tenacious  was the clay,  that  in many   cases they lost   gaiters and  shoes, and   even trowsers’ legs. The guns  sank above the axles  of their carriages, and  it required the strenuous exertions of many men to get them through.”
They reached the largely empty fort and continued its destruction, throwing most of the guns they found in the river, spiking the larger cannons,      knocking over the walls and burning all the clothes and provisions they found. They were so worn out by the time this was done (mostly from the slog through the knee deep mud) that they camped that night, rebuffed a lackluster midnight attack, and in the morning continued to the next fort.


It was also abandoned by the time they arrived. They dismantled it as they had the previous one, and continued marching, over steep hills divided by deep ravines, exhausting to foot soldiers, an even more difficult passage with great guns.  Sometimes they had to widen paths (‘where there were paths.’).  Other times they filled up gullies to drag the guns over, or lowered them by ropes from the steep hillsides. They had several skirmishes with Korean soldiers, but the superior firepower of the Americans mean the Koreans couldn’t get close enough for their own weapons to have much effect.  More Americans were prostrated by heat stroke.

The next fort would have been nearly impossible to reach, perched as it was on a sheer hillside with sheer walls.  But the American ships had been shelling from the river, so the walls and hillside were no longer sheer, but liberally scattered with freshly made hand and foot holds.

The Americans came on so fast that the Koreans had no time to reload their guns and defended their position by hurling rocks at the invaders,  and though their weapons were inferior, the soldiers were not.  Even in this ridiculously uneven fire fight the Korean soldiers continued “fighting’ acknowledged Rodgers, “with the greatest fury.”


The walls were breached. Americans rushed over  the parapet. Rodgers says, “The fighting inside the fort was desperate.  The resolution of the Coreans  was  unyielding;   they apparently   expected  no   quarter, and probably would  have given  none. They  fought to  the death,  and only when the last man fell did the conflict cease.”


In total, Rodgers reported that they had captured   and destroyed  five  forts. Fifty   flags were  taken, and several hundred ordinance.


“Two hundred and forty-three  dead Coreans were  counted in the works.  Few prisoners were  taken, not  above twenty,  and some of  these were wounded. Thus was a treacherous attack upon our people and an insult to our flag redressed,” said Rodgers.

Rodgers believed what he said, but again, it was a complete cross cultural fiasco.  There had been no treachery and the Koreans believed the insult was to them- the Americans were in violation of Korean law and the Korean forts had always had orders to fire on any foreign ships that crossed into the Han river because from the Han River, ships could fire directly on Korea’s capital city.  Rodgers didn’t know that, and he didn’t realize that he had been denied permission to sail on the Han River because he didn’t know that in Korea, silence was a strong denial.

It’s fascination to read the account of the battle of Ganghwa Island on Wikipedia, because it’s clearly written from the American PoV.


Previous posts on this event in history:

How a cultural misunderstanding started a war, part 1

Korean war of 1871

1871, An America War in Korea, part II

1871, American War in Korea, part III

The 1871 War with Korea, part V

War with Korea in 1871, Part VI


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War with Korea in 1871, Part VI

Mr. Low and Rear Admiral Rodgers decided the Koreans had “declared the attitude they intend to take toward us, and that it becomes us to reply to them as frankly in the same way.”
They believed failure to retaliate firmly would cause a ‘loss of prestige’ to all westerners in the East, and would cause Korea to view westerners with contempt and place westerners in greater danger in the future as the Koreans might feel they could continue to attack western travellers with impunity.   Rodgers at first wanted a full war, including the capture of the Korean chronicle, but he seems to have decided not to request that. Instead he gathered supplies and captured and destroyed several Korean forts along the river to make his point.  This is from his report on those attacks: (I wish I could give you the Korean side, but I don’t know it)


Rodgers gave the Koreans ten days to apologize, although that was a bit coy of him.  I don’t know if he honestly expected he might get an apology.  He did need that ten day grace period for his own purposes.  He needed the ten days to repair one of his ships that had been fired on and gotten a hole when it floundered on a rock, and to wait for more advantageous tides for his men to launch an attack.  The Koreans did not apologize, as they didn’t believe they had done anything wrong.  Rear Admiral Rodgers write that “the ambushed  attempt to cut off and  destroy our whole   surveying party  was assumed by  the Corean  official  to  be  entirely  in  accordance  with  the  proprieties  of intercourse between civilized people,  their own civilization being,  as was somewhat   proudly  stated,   four  thousand   years   old.”


At the end of the ten days the Americans did receive a communication which one Captain McLane Tilton described in a letter to his wife:

, “Today we got a communication from the Head Man at the fort referred to, who stated that when Capt. Febinger of our Navy came up here, he did not make war on them, and didn’t see why we wanted to come so far to make a treaty.  They had been living 4000 years they said, without any treaty with us, and of course they couldn’t see why they shouldn’t continue to live as they do!” (Tyson 1966).


I do see their point of view.  But on the other hand, a lot of things can change in 4,000 years, and that upstart, brash, young nation did have some technology, ideas, and skills that Korea could have used.  Among the most the historians I have read on this period in Korea’s history, the consensus is that had both sides understood each other better and been more flexible and culturally aware, it’s unlikely that Korea would have ended up under the heavy handed Japanese control just a dozen years or so later.   But hindsight, we all know the rest.  History is full of might have beens and it’s a hard and not altogether just thing to judge the actions of the people at the time based on what we know now. Korea had seen nations come and go and there were no reasons for it to have been obvious to them that they were viewing the last days of their form of government and the rise of democracies.  They had no way of knowing for certain they were at a crossroads, and even if they had, it’s not clear America would have been that helpful to themlater, based on the west responded for Korea’s warnings about Japan later.


Series of Posts:

How a cultural misunderstanding started a war, part 1

Korean war of 1871, Part 2

1871, An America War in Korea, part III

1871, American War in Korea, part IV

The 1871 War with Korea, part V

War with Korea in 1871, Part VI

War With Korea, 1871, Part VII


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