God Blessed us with Mollie

When I decided to focus in social work, I chose to specialize in Homelessness.
I searched and researched all of the programs, services, and outlets serving the most marginalized of America’s citizens.

I found LAMP and stalked them for months until they finally agreed to interview me. My first interview was with Mollie Lowery.

"So you know you’re white, right? Why would a white girl from a rich neighborhood like Arcadia want to work on Skid Row?".

I started this blog while working at LAMP. I have written about her before.

Mollie was not a warm person, the sharp edges of her protruding bones echoed the angles of her personality, and these were great traits. She used her edges to cut through the crap of politics, budgets, mental health and the roadblocks thrown at anyone helping people living with AIDS, and severe mental illness.

When Jim was diagnosed with Cancer she called me back into her office and demanded to know what my care plan was. Why? Because, she said, if I fancied myself a "case manager", I had to manage the lives of others.

Mollie and Arianna changed the way I see the world and expanded my horizons.

You will probably never have met her, but you will miss her when you see the way that Skid Row is about to go into to a deeper decline.

God Blessed us all with Mollie, and to show our gratitude.we each should take up some.part of her work and passion and help someone else.

Dreams on fire

When I was 10 years old I had a recurring nightmare. I dreamt that my family and I for it power station wagon driving through the desert. And the world was on fire.

We were stopping at gas stations to get gasoline so that then we could race from one gas station to the next trying to stay ahead of leaving fire.

In my dream the world was orange and the air was orange and thick and Dusty with smoke. The ground was orange with the glow a fire from all around us.

35 years later I am driving through that exact scenery.

I am happy that my entire family is safe and I do not live near this fire, other than near enough that my car looks like it snowed on with that.

But I worry for all the people who have just become homeless because their world has gone up in flames and I worry for all the homeless in the area who suddenly don’t have even the Clean Air to breathe which was their one and only luxury from before.


I was a Republican Conservative

sonyakeothcomservativeI was a proud Republican Conservative until it became my job to help people live in dignity.

You can be proud to be an American
And love your neighbors who are not.
You can disagree with the leadership
And express that in words requiring thought.
You can wade into poverty
To pull out people who just might drown
And teach them new life skills
Without once putting them down.

You can believe in the Constitution
While understanding the amendments
Are designed to allow changes in ideologue.
You can respect 3 branches of government
and that sometimes the police
“Are the boss of me”
While knowing that blue is a uniform
Worn by a human who is not always right.
You know there is a time for poise
A time for noise
and a time to fight for your right.

You can be an American
And swim in the melting pot,
And appreciate all the subcultures
Have values, even those you’re not
A member of.
You can be an American
Who loves Jesus, God and the saints above,
While respecting a call to Mecca, Temple, meditationand the vagueness
Of love.

America is wide and vast and colorful.
It is a reality and a dream
You can be an American who doesn’t
Condense the experience into a meme.
I used to be a conservative
Until I lived a life of service .
I applied “What would Jesus Do”
To my work, and now
Conservatives make me nervous

To Serve and Protect

I think we have discussed my experiences with excellent policing … from the police who came everytime we had to call 911 toward the end of my Great grandmother’s and mother’s lives as their health consistently failed, the police who arrived when I accidentally had a baby in the bathroom, 3 years later when that baby almost drowned, when my old Chevy ran out of gas on Santa Anita, when my Dad had an illegal yard sale, when the police called to tell me not to be afraid but they were in the back yard following a suspect and my dogs were safe but would probably start barking, when my car was stolen. And broken I to, when my door blew open and my neighbors thought the place was ransacked (true story) while I was out of town, and the officer who ticketed me then hugged me after my first car accident.

I believe in the police. When policing is done well, it is amazing and such a blessing to a community. As my five year old will tell you Karma the police force I like the Knights of the Round Table in an old fashioned Kingdom. She hears sirens and says "Help is on the way".

However, I have seen police kick my friends, scare homeless people, harass my friends for turning down offers for dates, arrest a homeless man for loitering at starbucks within seconds of him drinking the last of his coffee, and refuse to come out of the air conditioned police station into the 100 degree summer heat when I found the dead body of a client.

Clearly my list of positive encounters is longer than the negative, and I believe that there are more great people serving as officers than there are misfits. I know everyone can have an "off day", and even the nicest person can lose patience.

Policing is a hard job with unappealing views of society as a whole and individual nastiness on a micro level. The police see the child abuse, spousal abuse, theft, murder, assault, suicide, over dosing and human trafficking that we all ignore and then enjoy in night time television dramas.

I could not do it. The last time I broke up a fight in public , I bit a man, asked him of he kissed his mother with that foul mouth and told him to get off the bus and sit in a time.out (my oldest was 4 years old at the time, time outs were a thing ).

It is important to know that you can be pro-police and #blacklivesmatter at the same time. It is easy to know history, study trends and attitudes toward minorities and recognize racism and the unspoken caste system in America, all while being extremely thankful for the professionals sworn to keep the peace, enforce the laws and protect and serve everyone.

It is possible, and I think preferable, to love everyone and want to see all people and professions respected.

#blacklivesmatter black lives matter #bluelivesmatter #LAPD #ArcadiaPoliceDept , police, protect and serve

Mississippi Rep Misses the Point of Medicaid

My mom died of Type 2 Diabetes. Thank God for @Kaiser because they kept her alive fir years and made her medication affordable.

Not every family can afford private health insurance
Mend Poverty in Pacoima provides care to people with no insurance in the neighborhood.

But in Mississippi the coverage doesnt cover enough.

I am flabbergasted by the Representative’s response.


LA Brea Tar Pits are Free with EBT

You can Google all the places your EBT Golden Advantage card will grant you admission to. (I think I posted a link on my blog once).

One of those places is the La Brea Tar Pits. It is a cute little Museum which is about a half an hour walk around inside and a park outside or you can look at the Tar Pits.

I asked at the museum desk today and they showed me what an EBT ticket looks like.

If you can only be what you can see, it makes sense to have a broad cultural appreciation of local History.