Strep Throat

Politics and Play
Life on and off the court Connie Shannon If there is one place where I've been able to find some 'peace' and diversion away from the activism world, strep throat it has been on the tennis court. When I'm playing tennis, strep throat I don't have to think about what's going on anywhere else. I am outside and hitting the ball and that's about all that matters. The tennis club I belong to has often times been a refuge for me away from all the reality. It's a little community within itself. As with any community, strep throat it has a variation of people of different ages and different backgrounds, strep throat and what brings us together is a love for the game. Strep throat And, strep throat as with any community it has a variation of people with different life purposes, strep throat beliefs and agendas. When I joined years ago, strep throat I was new to Los Angeles and thought it would be a great way to meet others. And it has been. Since being in California my activism and political work and focus has shifted from less political party involvement to more specific issue oriented work and writing. For better or worse I've focused my energy on subjects that for many seem controversial and even taboo. I guess I've read enough about Thoreau to agree that we can strike the branches and essentially get nowhere or we can strike at the root of the problems and create some legitimate change. Striking at the root of problems is an interesting and precarious road to take. What I would say as an activist in California somewhat safely esconsed in her world in Los Angeles, strep throat there remains a lack of legitimate dialog, strep throat  specifically in addressing the "root" issues.  Root issues require us to look outside our world of comfort and convenience towards a world that others are living and enduring daily. Strep throat Root issues take us to Iraq, strep throat Palestine, strep throat Darfur, strep throat Afghanistan, strep throat Pakistan and many other places. Root issues require an understanding that we are all connected and our chain is only as strong as the weakest link. Strep throat     As such, strep throat there is always resistance towards addressing such root issues.  I've resisted.  We all have.  However, strep throat when there is continued resistance in confronting root issues, strep throat comes the fear and denial by some, strep throat and at times, strep throat it can invite retaliation. In certain situations, strep throat it can invite its share of campaigns against those who care to mention the emperor(s) are naked as jaybirds. Strep throat    What does this have to do with tennis? Its a good question.   Perhaps it has to do with a person's refuge being fair game and a nice little spot to create problems where one would least expect it? Who knows? Maybe it has to do with the fear of those who are willing to engage and do something about it, strep throat by those who are unwilling to engage and see another perspective. Of course, strep throat as in any community, strep throat there are conflicts.  And as in any community there are those who can become threatened by those whose opinions differ.  And as in any community with individuals who wish to focus their energies targeting others, strep throat they can and will engage in what they feel is necessary.  There are those who will act in indirect ways towards others who hold different beliefs.   They can't seem to engage directly - that might reveal their agenda?  So it seems that speaking and writing about what is happening in Gaza and/or my views in general don't seem to bode well with a few individuals at my club. Strep throat What's funny is they don't talk to me about it. Strep throat   I've had some interesting encounters. Strep throat   I've even had some interesting 'non-encounters' with those who would seemingly rather take the back door approach in their evaluations of others, strep throat and of me.   Back  door approaches are fine and a part of life.    We all make judgements from time to time. Strep throat   It's when things border on threatening or intentionally dishonest, strep throat it becomes an issue. Strep throat      Then there are those who are friends and yet are perhaps allied to their own groups.   I had one close friend tell me recently at lunch that she was "pro-Zionist".   It was a statement I hadn't really expected. Strep throat   At the same time, strep throat  her being "pro-Zionist", strep throat while it may explain some things, strep throat wasn't too important certainly with regards in how I feel about her. Strep throat   In addition, strep throat  I welcome diversity in thought. Strep throat   At the same time, strep throat in the world of activism there are those who call themselves "pro-Zionist" who have targeted individuals like myself. Strep throat    In short, strep throat the lunch left me confused.  The lack of clarity or explanation has left me equally confused. Strep throat      She had read my articles, strep throat knew my concerns about a myriad of things, strep throat and she knew my views about the occupation of Gaza and Palestinian territories. Strep throat   It's fine and even welcomed to have a differing opinion, strep throat but I would like to understand why. Strep throat     We weren't able to continue the conversation and I haven't spoken with her personally since that time. Strep throat   Perhaps she simply didn't and doesn't want to talk about it. Strep throat    My question to others who may consider themselves  'Zionists' or whatever label they believe adequately defines them, strep throat  and they somehow consider me a threat and/or the enemy, strep throat I will simply ask why not address me directly?     We could learn so much from each other.  Is it because I believe differently than you do? Is it because I want the bombs to stop falling? Because I want the war industry to quit promoting death, strep throat chaos, strep throat and continued tragedy for millions around the globe? I don't think so because I would wager you want the same.  So why engage in the whispering campaigns?  How courageous is it to not engage in dialog with me? Those are some questions I have tonight. And have had for some time now. Ive mentioned agendas - here is mine.  I want to enjoy life with my friends and family I love and do some good in the world before I leave it. I want innocent people and children in schools to stop being traumatized, strep throat bombed and targeted in specific regions even when governments like the Israeli/US government call it (again and again) an "accident". I want children and adults to have the same access to decent education as those with large sums of money in their portfolio. I want American families and all other families around the globe to not be economically terrorized any longer. I want the media to stop pumping citizens with fear, strep throat propaganda and useless information.  I want us to be more curious and less fearful of each other and whatever differences we have. Our differences are what make life interesting and worthwhile. There's much I want. There's so much we all want. And yet we've been made to be scared and frightened of each other. There's little difference between what I want and what my Israeli friends and Palestinian friend want. None of us are special in that regard. We all want to be treated with kindness and respect. I don't think that's too much to ask. Do you?