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Dear (M)all of ‘Murica:

I’m writing to request information regarding your return/exchange policy on The Donald that we received Nov. 8 as an early Christmas gift.

Some background: We tried to order The Hillary, but were told there was a problem with the email server.

It appears, however, that The Donald has this same glitch, among other problems.

Voice command override:
We tried to program it numerous times with numerous voice samples, but it refuses to respond.

False warning signals:
This model tends to beep for no reason beginning around 3 a.m. We are hard-working Americans who want to get some sleep. We can’t have The Donald bleating codes such as “MERYL” and “NYT” over and over.

Security issues:
The Donald was billed as a unit that would keep us safe. However, I’m more worried about break-ins than ever before. The unit is inside barking, “Come at me, Bro!” and “Cash me outside; how bow dah!,” which I think is egging on those with bad intentions. Plus, it won’t let in the people we invited.

Failure to work with existing systems:
Almost immediately upon arrival, The Donald refused to work with other units already in place. It overrode the sensors on various technology and tried to shut them down. Some systems are back up and running on alternative power, but others still are refusing to connect.

Low energy efficiency:
The Donald was billed as a unit that that would increase energy efficiency and protect the environment. However, the model has two pipes that could start leaking oil at any moment.

These are just five of the many problems with this model. We would like to return The Donald as it clearly is as defective as we had heard prior to receiving it. The limited warranty expired Jan. 20.

Line 25 of your operating manual gives some guidance on your return/exchange policy, but I’d like more details, a timeline and information about a replacement.

I know you have The Pence in stock, but I’m not interested in that model because its features are limited. The Ryan has numerous reported defects. I’ve heard The Sanders is on back order and The Kasich is out of stock indefinitely. What other options do you have? Do I have to wait for The Libtard 2020 or The Snowflake 2024?

Please respond at your earliest convenience. We are losing long-time friends because of The Donald, and it is scaring the children.

Eagerly awaiting a resolution,
Beth (and 65+ million others)

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Dear Legislators Hell-bent on Defunding Any Programs Dealing with Lady Bits:

The tweet above is funny (albeit hyperbolic). The executive order it deals with is not so funny.

Listen, no federal money supports abortions. That’s the deal already. What federal money supports is family planning and reproductive health. Can’t we agree that’s a good thing? More education, planning and birth control REDUCES the number of abortions. Isn’t that the goal? (Note that the Guttmacher Institute just released a report that U.S. abortion rates dropped to a record low, falling below the 1973 level  — the year Roe vs. Wade made abortion legal.)

If you defund all these programs, what are people going to do? If you state that life begins at fertilization and make abortion illegal, that is not going to stop abortions from happening (see prohibition, the “war on drugs“).

Why is this a women’s issue? Who is making people pregnant?

Yeah, that’s right.

But the burden is on the woman whether it is consensual or not (for birth control too). And the embryo seems to be more important than the woman herself. Why is that? If the woman has the child and struggles financially because the man is nowhere to be found, then she is a “freeloader.”

That’s just great.

There’s also the fact that there are about 540,000 children in foster care or waiting to be adopted, according to the Administration for Children and Families.

Want to ban abortions and birth control? Go ahead and ban sex.

You go first.

Constituently yours,
Beth

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mitch_mcconnell2Dear Mitch McConnell:

I hate you with a white-hot rage. I hate you like Kanye hates a drama-free life. I hate you more than I hate people who drive slow in the passing lane.

Why am I foaming at the mouth? Why do I hate you so much?

Here’s your latest comment in reference to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer saying he will block any Trump Supreme Court nominee:

Apparently there’s yet a new standard now, which is to not confirm a Supreme Court nominee at all.

Sweet baby Jesus, man — you set the new crazy standard when you blocked the moderate nominee Merrick Garland for 11 months! He was a choice people on both sides seemed to like. And you did it just to spite Obama.

And now you have the audacity to be upset that someone might try to block you?

headexplodeThat’s me, Mitch. My head is exploding, Mitch.

Politicians like you are the reason Congress needs term limits.

From 2008 through 2010, you “orchestrated the delivery of nearly half a billion dollars in federal funds, with a pronounced emphasis on projects in [your] home state” of Kentucky, according to a long-form journalism piece on you in Huffington Post.

Yet you haven’t managed to help the people of Kentucky very much. According to that same article, “More than 17 percent of its citizens go without health insurance of any kind, even as the state’s high poverty rate results in more than 880,000 Medicaid patients.” That’s government assistance, Mitch! Aren’t you, as a GOP leader, supposed to be against government handouts?

More of your greatest hits:

You complain about Washington gridlock, but you are the leading cause of that gridlock.

You filibustered your hateful ass off as Senate minority leader, forcing more than a quarter of all cloture votes in the history of the Senate.

You’ve even filibustered your own proposal. What the heck, dude?!

You shot down all of the following:

You are against anything having to do with support for women, such as:

You are against this legislation because you think, incorrectly, that gender discrimination in the workplace is a thing of the past. “I could be wrong, but most of the barriers have been lowered,” you said in 2014. You’re wrong, Mitch. So wrong. But as a rich, white guy, you don’t understand, and — worse — you don’t care.

Speaking of being rich, your personal wealth increased 786 percent from 2004 to 2010. How is that possible, Mitch? Yet more than 19 percent of the people in your state live below the poverty line. That makes Kentucky 47th in the nation in terms of wealth. We only have 50 states, Mitch!

Congratulations.

More than 30 years in the Senate — a CAREER POLITICIAN (and people seem to hate that) — and what do you have to show for yourself?

Very little but hatred. Yet you were reelected in 2014, which means we all have to look at your evil, smug face for four more years. You’ve even said you relish the villain role. Delightful!

I beg your constituents to hear my plea to boot you on your money-padded posterior in 2020.

Supremely vexed,
Beth

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Dear Facebook Friends:

Happy new year! I appreciate that your posts have been filled with love and light for the holidays.

In just a little over two weeks, though, we will inaugurate a new president. And I’m sure that’s going to bring back all the nasty political posts.

This is how I feel about that:

181

Let’s start off on the right foot for 2017 by making Facebook a palatable place again. And by that, I mean I need you to stop writing the following:

You say: “I’m tired of being politically correct.”
I hear: “I want to be able to say the same horrible stuff I’ve always said without someone calling me out.”
The truth: You have freedom of speech, but that does not mean you have freedom from consequences. If you want to say, “That’s so gay,” like you did in the ’80s, I’m going to have to chastise you or delete you. Your choice.

You say: “I like Trump because he speaks his mind.”
I hear: “He is saying the horrible stuff I want to say but I can’t because I have to be politically correct (see above).”
The truth (as I see it): Despite his assertions that he has a very good brain, his mind is full of cobwebs, tumbleweeds and pictures of naked ladies. He’s gross. Sorry, not sorry.

You say: “Trump is surrounding himself with good people.”
I hear: “I don’t really like him, but I voted for him and now I have to double down on that decision. I’m going to be optimistic despite all evidence to the contrary. Gingrich, Giuliani and Christie — the Larry, Darryl and Darryl of the campaign — didn’t worry me enough. Oh look over there — a squirrel!”
The truth: So much for draining the swamp. I can’t even with this.

You say: “I’m so glad Clinton didn’t win. Clinton is corrupt.” Also, “she is a career politician.”
I hear that you don’t like her. I get it. But …
The truth: If you really cared about corruption, you wouldn’t have voted for Trump. He’s got a list of shady maneuvers longer than Santa’s naughty list. As for the other, I’m still pissed that her ambition is seen as a bad thing. Clinton worked her whole life toward one goal and she loses to a dude (of course) who seemingly ran on a whim.

You say: “Suck it up. Get over it. He won. Now you know how I felt when Obama won twice.”
I hear: “Nyah, nyah” and “neener, neener.”
The truth: Obama and Trump are very different people and very different politicians. Both wins reflected a desire for change from the prior administration. I’m better off now than I was eight years ago and so are most people I know. I guess you aren’t. Either that, or you are voting against your own best interests.

You say: “There is a war on Christianity.”
I hear: “I’m pissed that everyone doesn’t believe what I believe.”
The truth: Not everyone is a Christian. We have separation of church and state for a reason.

You say anything nasty regarding the mainstream media.
I hear you attacking my integrity as I have spent my life working in and researching local news.
The truth: Without the mainstream media, we would have no reliable information about what is happening in our communities, our nation, our world. The fourth estate is crucial for an informed citizenry. Also,

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As you should know, I am not a straight-ticket kind of person. I would love to hear your point of view. But I want to hear it in person over coffee. I’m not interested in the talking points or meme you got from some fake news site run by a bored teen in Macedonia. Fair warning: This is the year that I stop being polite and start getting real. (More so than usual.) 

We are all human here. Let’s try to make the world a better place. We can disagree about how we are going to do that, but let’s schedule a play date to discuss.

Love and kisses in 2017!
Beth

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Dear Leaders of the Democratic Party:

Now that my left-leaning self has cycled through the five stages of grief over not getting to have Clinton as president, I want to do a postmortem of the election like I did in 2016.

Here are things to consider now in preparation for 2020:

▪Pick a candidate people like or at least one they feel they can trust. Likeability shouldn’t be a factor, but it is (see Bush vs. Gore and Obama vs. Romney). Clinton is smart. She is a policy wonk and a hard worker. She has many accomplishments. She also has baggage from Bill, Benghazi, etc. (whether deserved or not is not the focus of this discussion). I loved her. She is a fellow Tracy Flick. However, most Republicans have never liked her and even some die-hard Democrats had trouble getting behind her. A perception of being secretive and scheming doesn’t play well when people are pissed about what they think is a corrupt system that doesn’t help working people. It says something when people would rather vote for the person endorsed by the KKK than your candidate. Yes, misogyny is at play, but so is that baggage. Yes, and some people are racist and xenophobic and voted for Trump because they saw a kindred spirit. That’s the worst part of this Trump win.

Don’t assume people are doing their research. Anti-intellectualism is alive and well. Memes speak louder than researched articles. Address perceptions and concerns in public early and often. Maybe you didn’t think the emails would be this big of a deal but the people who already mistrusted Clinton did, as they saw the private server as more evidence of suspicious behavior. And then there are the false equivalency issues, but that topic also is for another day.

Don’t just talk to other so-called liberal elites. Evaluate carefully the entire electorate. Consider carefully your approach. Promoting Clinton’s 30 years of experience may not have been the right choice in a year where Red State America is angry at the establishment and institutions they perceive to be at fault for the fact that they feel disenfranchised and left behind. It’s easy to blame the president, and they did (and yes, there’s racism at play here too). It doesn’t matter that the GOP has had control of both the Senate and the House for years and didn’t get anything done. Many of those who voted for Trump were mad at everyone in the ideological bubble — conservative elites included. Many Trump voters liked that he was an outsider who didn’t play by the rules. They truly believe he will shake up the system and make changes for good. And maybe he will.

Listen to the people in the party who are suggesting alternatives. Bernie Sanders was discounted, then seen as a nuisance. He finally got on board the Clinton train, but many of his supporters never did. If you really wanted to defeat Trump, you should have gone with a Clinton/Sanders ticket. The Democratic Party would have been more united and not throwing votes Jill Stein’s way.

Don’t alienate most of the country. Though the core liberal base really does believe that we are “stronger together,” many Republicans believe some people are not pulling their fair share. Whether they can or are or can’t because of institutionalized racism is a topic for another day. The fact is that many people — voters — have this perception. Speak to their concerns; their concerns should concern us all.

If you don’t understand the feelings of Red State folks because you don’t see all these people on news programs, then you need to do some research yourself and hold the mainstream media accountable. There was an overwhelming narrative that was contradictory: Clinton is bad (Look at all these emails!) and Clinton is good (Trump is crazy!). Many members of the media did not seek the full story of what was happening. As a result, election night was a surprise.

▪ Don’t ignore concepts that people think are affecting their daily lives — whether they are or not. People are upset about immigration and want something tangible done about it. People are scared of terrorists. People are tired of jobs drying up in the Rust Belt. People are pissed about Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) premiums. Clinton discussed these in the abstract while Trump talked about them in concrete terms, albeit wall-building, ban-implementing, fear-mongering ones. He seemed to put America first — perhaps only white, straight America — but that’s what his audience wanted to hear.

Remember to get out the vote. It’s shocking how many people did not vote.

You have four more years to get the party back on track. Get with it. Listen to Michael Moore. Shift party focus to serving all of America, including the angry white suburban and rural voter (see video above). Figure out concrete solutions to economic issues, homeland threats and fixing the problems with the Affordable Care Act. Hold the Republicans who control the Senate, House and Oval Office accountable for all their policies, and make sure they don’t roll back reproductive rights, rights for the LBGTQ community, support for legal immigration for people of all religions and nationalities, etc. Work with the Republicans to make this country stronger together. Make sure our institutions are working for everyone — the people upset by the past eight years and the people upset at the prospect of the next four.

Better luck in 2020!

Beth

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Dear Mr. Trump:

I have not been in the basket for you. In fact, Eddie is a well-known bad hombre, and I’ve been a pretty nasty woman.

But thanks to all my uber-conservative friends on Facebook, I’ve seen the light (because that’s how things work on social media, right?!).

Clearly I was wrong about you. This whole time, I thought that your slogan “Make America Great Again” meant that you wanted to return America to a better time for white men — you know, when women and black people “knew their place.”

But, of course you can’t mean that. Here’s what I think you must mean, as this is what “Making America Great Again” means to me:

  1. Music on MTV (which stands for — get this — “Music Television“).
  2. Must See TV Thursday night line-up.
  3. Three-martini lunches (gone before I started working, but they seem like a great idea).
  4. Abundant fireflies.
  5. A dinner where no one checks his/her phone.
  6. AP style used “more than” for amount and did not allow “hopefully” to mean “it is hoped.”
  7. No texted weiner pics.
  8. The toughest tech to figure out was how to hit play/record at the moment when the DJ stopped talking.
  9. The iPhone had a built-in headphone jack.
  10. You weren’t in politics.

Sorry. That last one slipped in there. I guess I can’t even pretend. I tried.

I’ll be making America great STILL* with my vote today. I hope I’m in the majority.

And I hope this will be you tonight:

A flamin' hot Cheeto

A flamin’ hot, angry Cheeto

Please go away.

Thanks,
Beth

*even better, actually

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Dear Karen,

I received this email from you last night.

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You must not have seen my last missive to you. You certainly didn’t get the message. The words in the purple box above are interesting, especially as I took a fresh trip over to your Facebook wall and found this:

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My reaction:

I will pledge my vote, but certainly not for whom you want.

Please go away.

Sincerely,
Beth

 

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