Proud to be an American

Okay – it’s been a rough go. Tough and tumble election. Nastiness that has set everyone on edge – with a surprise wallop of an ending. But now it’s over and I think the big winner is America.

I don’t say that because I’m in love with Trump. Because I’m not. His claims of a rigged election were outrageous and inflammatory. The things he said still leave me shaking my head.

Nonetheless, I’m proud to live in a country where neither the media, nor the pollsters, nor the political pundits, get to decide the election. Elections are decided when the American people go to the polls and vote. And America has voted. Say what you want and grumble as you might, America has spoken. You may not like it – but that is the process.

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Phoenix Calling the LGBTQ Community

Whenever I check out the list of popular travel destinations for the LGBTQ community, it never seems to include the Phoenix metropolitan area. San Francisco, New York City, Washington D.C., Miami, Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Rehoboth Beach, Boston, even Chicago, all seem to make the grade. But not Phoenix.

Perhaps that’s because Phoenix sits squarely in Arizona with its reputation as a red state, even though in the most recent nail-biting election, the political pundits thought Arizona evidenced strong shades of blue. Certainly Phoenix, Tempe, Flagstaff, Sedona and Bisbee, run blue. Bluer than the Mediterranean in the summer. Bluer than a Vegas cocktail. Bluer than the eyes of that bartender taking your order at AZ88, a popular bar in Scottsdale. Alas Scottsdale, where many of our resorts gather, remains a strong Republican bastion, even though everyone, as you’d expect in a resort town, is happily welcomed.

Or maybe, we’re still suffering under the shadow of the SB1070 legislation signed into law in 2010 by former Governor, Jan Brewer. Enacted to combat illegal immigration, SB1070 gave license to illegal stop and search. Profiling ensued, scaring the hell out of everybody. Eventually, the legislation was deemed unconstitutional and the Feds pressed charges against Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Coincidently, Arpaoi lost his bid for re-election. The good guys prevailed.

So I get it’s hot in the summer. I get the scary reputation. I even understand that once the damage is done, it’s hard to come back. Think Mel Gibson. Think Bill Cosby. I totally get it. But there’s more to consider. Much more.

The Phoenix metropolitan area is perhaps one of the friendliest places to visit. Most Arizonan’s hail from elsewhere. Michigan, Illinois, Minnesota, to just name three states that seem to regularly feed the population. And the weather from October to April is absolutely gorgeous. Think Miami without the humidity. Think San Francisco without the fog and fear of earthquake. Think New York City without the snow and grime. Think Chicago without the wind chill. The weather is lovely in Phoenix through most of the year.

So this is my invitation. Come back to Phoenix. Give it a try. Check out our fabulous resorts. Enjoy the bars, the amazing food, and of course, the hospitality. Explore our city and see why Phoenix welcomes everyone.

Assault Rifles: Isn’t the danger right there in the name?

Okay. I’m stumped by this.

If I was in a supermarket and came across a new breakfast cereal named Cancer Corn, I’d never buy it.

I’d avoid Jawbreakers, mostly because I’m afraid of the dentist, but also because it seems impossible to get those things into your mouth without choking.

I’d pass on any automobile named A-Bomb, especially if there was a chance of setting off a nuclear event with the simple turn of an ignition key.

Yet in America, military-style Assault weapons are available to purchase for wild game-hunting and self-protection?

Seems like over-kill. Or am I missing something?

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From “The Liberation of Marcia Brady” to Hillary Clinton

I happened to catch an episode of the Brady Bunch on the very morning that Hillary Clinton was to accept the Democratic nomination for President of the United States. That’s what I do when I wake up at 4:30 a.m. I sit in front of the television with a cup of coffee, blinking hard until the world comes into focus. 1970’s sitcom television is about all I can handle. It’s my precursor to the morning news.

Odd, I thought as I watched the episode unfold. “The Liberation of Marcia Brady” raised awareness about feminism, women libbers, and equal rights. Seemingly audacious concepts back in 1970’s America.

Well the cultural wars have come – but not gone. And like opening a time capsule—the episode reminded me that change comes slowly. But it does come.

Here we are, all these years later, and thankfully, no man or woman would dare raise concerns about Hillary Clinton’s viability as a candidate based solely on her gender. In the 1970’s—that couldn’t have been possible.

It made me realize how far we’ve come as a Nation.

Now it’s time for America to get onboard with equal pay for equal work. Marcia and Hillary deserve nothing less.

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