Saturday, March 7, 2015

Holding onto Anger

I recently had a discussion with a relative about holding onto anger. I know everyone says that's a bad idea, it's harmful to my own psyche, it lets the other person win, and all that jazz. And with the class I'm taking, a semester learning about the Holocaust, I am torn. I'm learning in detail what hate, blind hate that ignores ethics and morals, can do to people. It reminds me of a line from Theoden in "Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. When the people of Rohan are losing the battle against the Orcs and the Uruk-hai, Theoden asks, "So much death, what can men do against such reckless hate?" And there is no easy answer. Though I never want to feel the kind of anger that would push me to take a life or stand aside and let it happen, there are times I don't want to let go of my anger. There are individuals who've made me so angry or taken something so important that I don't feel that forgiving them is the right thing to do. Is this childish? Selfish? I'm not sure and frankly, I don't think I care. I will say that it has to be something EXTREME for me to be willing to continue to be angry or even hate a person. I don't wish to hold onto negativity for something simple.

Five years ago something happened that I can never forgive and forget. I will NEVER stop being angry about it. In the early morning hours of 2 Jan 2010, my oldest niece (who would've been 24 that April) was driving home from visiting a friend. Her car ran out of gas on the Dallas North Tollway, a freeway with no shoulder. In the minutes it took her to text someone for a ride a drunk driver, one Khary McWilliams, slammed into her car, killing her instantly though we wouldn't know for certain until they got her body temperature up to check for brain activity. That is enough to make anyone furious but that isn't even the end of it. Two years later, it was decided by the courts that the man who did this, the man who drank well beyond his limit and got behind the wheel of his car, the man who took my niece's life was given probation as his punishment for taking a life. His attorney said this about putting McWilliams in prison, "with all due respect to the Richardson family, sending Khary to the penitentiary is not going to bring their daughter back. … At some point he's going to get out and is he going to be a different man than he is today? I submit to the court the answer to that is yes. I don't have to educate the court on how hard being in prison would be on someone like Khary McWilliams." Is that not the point of prison? To be hard on someone who committed a crime, who took someone's life, so they don't do it again? Why be soft on the criminal when the victim got no such consideration? And at the time of sentencing, the criminal admitted "to having driven after drinking on other occasions. He also admitted to having drank alcohol in the time since the accident." Unfortunately, it'll take the death of another innocent motorist before my niece receives any justice.

So hell yes I'm still angry. I want to be angry. Someone has to be angry for the sake of potential victims. He's living his life, celebrating holidays, and being with his family. My niece will never have that chance and our holidays are all bittersweet. I'm willing to say I HATE the man. Always will. I know it won't bring my niece back but neither will forgiving the killer of his crime. He doesn't deserve it. He'll never earn it. Nothing he can do will change the fact that he killed her and got away with it.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Reading Challenge Witchy Style

I've already posted my plans to read 50 books this year. Goodreads tells me I'm currently 3 books behind schedule. This doesn't surprise as I'm in the middle of three textbooks for my class on The Holocaust and creating a workshop piece for my writing class. After the spring semester I should be able to kick it into high gear before the fall semester. I'm going to combine my Goodreads challenge, the one I found on someone's blog (see previous post), and this new one:

2015 Witches &a Witchcraft Reading Challenge

The 2015 Witches and Witchcraft Challenge also goes well with my Cozy Mystery Mondays since most of my cozy choices have a witchy theme. I also have several galley titles I need to review for Llewellyn for being kind enough to share them with me. Updates coming on my many reading challenges and a new Cozy Mystery Monday review will be here as soon as possible.

Oh, and I almost forgot to include the challenge rules and my goal of Maiden level.

Challenge Rules:
  • This challenge will run from Jan 1, 2015 – Dec 31, 2015. I will be posting a place to link up a sign-up post (below), reviews and a wrap-up post. (Note: You do not have to review the books to participate, but only those who link up reviews will be entered for the prize)
  • Grab the reading challenge button (code & button below) and post this reading challenge on your blog to track your progress. Please include a link back to this sign-up post so others can join the reading challenge too. You do not have to be a book blogger to participate- you could track your progress and post reviews on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, etc.
  • Any full length book that includes a witch as a main character or includes major witchcraft elements counts. They may be fiction or non-fiction. However, they should not be reference books which are not read cover to cover-I will leave this to your discretion.
  • Books can be any format (bound, eBook, audio).
  • Re-reads and crossovers from other reading challenges are allowed.
  • You can list your books in advance or just put them in a wrap-up post. If you list them, feel free to change them as the mood takes you.
  • When you sign up in the linky put the direct link to your post about joining the 2015 Witches & Witchcraft Reading Challenge, not just a link to your blog.
  • You can move up levels, but no moving down.
  • Sign-ups will be open until Dec 15, 2015, so feel free to join at any time throughout the year.
  • Have some Witchy Good Fun !!!

The Levels

Initiate: Read 1 – 5 Witchy Books
Maiden: Read 6 – 10 Witchy Books
Mother: Read 11 – 15 Witchy Books
Crone: Read 16 – 20 Witchy Books