Monthly Archives: March 2015


Blog Feminism#3_edited-1

I am repeating this piece because of the toxic political climate — particularly regarding women.

Feminism is the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.

Both sexes.

We need to strive for that again. Oh, I know many do. But let’s face it, most women allow themselves to be led around by men who are not nearly as smart as they are. There’s plenty wrong with that.


Women are allowing a large group of some of the stupidest politicians in history make the fundamental laws that affect not only their existence, but everyone’s. Birth control, abortion rights, health care, social security, medicare.

Have you followed their definitions of rape?

And they get away with it because the distribution of power is weighed so heavily in favor of men along with their disproportionate incomes and votes.

And that’s the way they like it. Female issues are manipulated, devalued, almost irrelevant. We should be pushing back. Stopping it!


Women work as hard as men but receive less money. How can we ever attain equality if we earn less, have fewer benefits, less intellectual respect, less disposable income, no child care benefits, less retirement income, lower social security income.


Once women fill their only purpose in life according to society (men) –bearing children–they lose any value at all.  Even sexually. After all, aging women don’t have cute asses anymore, and when those big breasts (many of them implants encouraged by men) and gravity collide, they aren’t quite so sexy.

Today, women who are no longer young quickly beome irrelevant. Basically, every society around the world says women really exist solely for bearing children.

That’s it.

If women want to be respected for anything other than that, especially for their intelligence, they will have to fight much harder for recognition. Because the way it is now, women themselves don’t value their brains or their ambitions  – exactly  the same way men don’t.

Women don’t seem to think it’s smart to be smart.

We still smile, or grit our teeth, and accept that men are better than us. I know we accept it, or we wouldn’t put up with it for one more minute.

The concept “lean in,” referencing the need for women to speak up, fight for our due, is one I applaud. Certainly that would be an improvement, but I think many women have continued to lean in or everything would be even more unfair.

No! Lean in won’t do it. I think it’s time to shout out.



Men are by nature loners. Some buddy up to go drinking or looking for sex, but women constantly interface for every reason possible. They consult each other, emotionally support each other, rally for each other, help each other. Now, we have to stand up for each other — for equality.

And there are plenty of men who believe in the ideal of Feminism. If we stand, they will stand, too.

In early societies women were the leaders, the healers. But while we were busy raising children, all our powers evaporated.

Know why?

Because we let it happen.


BONE OF CONTENTION Final#4 of the RN Gina Mazzio series, BONE OF CONTENTION, deals with the complex issue of legalized abortion. Gina, as always, is not afraid to engage in any battle that threatens her patients.



             When I was a child, my parents took me to The Greatest Show on Earth in Madison Square Garden. The one and only Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus. And I went every single year.

It was spectacular.

Mostly, I remember the opening parade. That’s when the elephants, carrying gorgeous women in glittering costumes, would stride around the perimeter of the huge arena that held three large performing rings.

The audience went wild, shouting, laughing.

To me, a kid living in a big city, it was the best time of my life – the moment when happiness became part of my life.

There were silly clowns everywhere, some shot out of cannons; prancing horses, high wire acts; cotton candy, hot dogs, flying banners on sticks (they all ended up on the wall in my room, a new one every year ). And let’s not forget all those junky souvenirs that made me feel everything was spun from magic. After all, they all came from the circus, and my father was a real sucker. He bought me everything. What a wonderful man!

And there in Madison Square Garden, my imagination went wild, the world was mine.

I was happy. Everyone was happy at the circus


During all those years it never entered my mind to think about the living hell all the animal performers were enduring just so I could have an afternoon of fun. Tigers, lions, bears, were whipped, beaten, cornered. I never thought about them.

Not once.

And I never noticed that the elephants were poked or prodded. Huge, wonderful beings boxed in and tied down. No. I never thought of them either. Why would they be unhappy when I was having so much fun?

And the circus was all about me.

But today, things are changing. And it’s not because the circus has had a sudden epiphany. Rather it’s the fact there are wonderful people in the world who have screamed out, petitioned, boycotted, hounded, educated the rest of us that never saw the seams, the cracks in that perfect world. Those very people have now brought about a fantastic change.

Very soon there’ll be no more elephants in the circus. The Greatest Show on Earth is giving them up. And for those who have mentioned the great breeding program the circus provides, all I have to say is that the elephants have a much better one in their native lands, in their natural environment, where they can be free and, we hope, can survive.

Yes, there are real people out there who care about the earth. Care about the creatures that share our planet. And they work tirelessly to try to turn our species into something noble.

It gives me hope that all of us can make a difference. Maybe we can save what’s left of our planet’s wildlife.

Maybe we will.


.TheOrganHarvestersBette COVER

The Organ Harvesters (Assent Publishing) Winner! The 2014 Stellar Sci-fi Contest For Science Fiction Dystopian Novel.

A damning evaluation of a system that had put technological advancements ahead of human rights, and protection of the environment.

Five ***** “Compelling from cover to cover.”



 Pic Spock3

 Pic Spock

 In Leonard Nimoy’s final tweet, which he posted on Feb. 23, he wrote, “A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory.  LLAP.”

I’m going to miss Leonard Nimoy.

The role he played in Star Trek has stayed with me all of these years. Spock presented us with a being from the planet Vulcan — to humans it was truly an alien life form because it had learned the value of logic and reason over raw emotion.

Spock was half human, but didn’t have much use for his human side (nor did the Vulcans) because he didn’t believe in the useless outbursts or the expenditure of emotions that cloud every issue, every endeavor we humans undertake.

Think about the human side of Spock. That flawed part he constantly tried to suppress, the part that thought nothing of what it destroyed to achieve its goal. He had to constantly temper this annoying human trait with the Vulcan side, which understood only too well that humans want what they want, when they want it. And it’s usually right now. Yes, humans love, but look around you — greed usually trumps human love every time.

My favorite episode: THE DEVIL IN THE DARK: Captain James T. Kirk is sent to the pergium mining colony on the planet Janus VI to investigate reports of a strange creature which recently killed 50 miners with a strong corrosive substance.

A landing party consisting of Kirk, Spock, and McCoy beam down to meet with the mine personnel. An engineer describes having seen the monster (which looks like a huge, blobby spider. It’s pretty horrifying). This engineer says that he shot it with his phaser, which didn’t stop it, only wounded it.

Spock’s curiosity is aroused by a spherical object, one of thousands of silicon nodules found in recently opened mine levels. It has no commercial value, but it’s beautiful to look at, so there it sits on someone’s desk as an ornament.

Kirk orders McCoy to come and help the wounded creature while Spock mind-melds with the life form called Horta.

In his mind-meld, Spock endures the horrible pain and suffering of this being, not only from its wound, but its emotions. Spock discovers that every 50,000 years its entire race dies, except for one, who remains to protect the eggs and act as their mother. The miners have been destroying these eggs (Remember. One sits on someone’s desk). Horta gains enough knowledge from the mind-meld to etch these words on stone :


I remember watching that episode, and I still think of it often. That I, along with the fictional character Spock, felt the unbearable suffering and pain of not only the Horta, but other living beings across our planet. Fiction can be truth.

What is it about we humans?

Whether it’s the fictional mineral pergium on Janus VI, a far away planet, or ivory on Planet Earth. Does it matter? We kill entire species, we kill Earth’s wildlife for the silliest of reasons. We kill elephants because we like to wear ivory trinkets, or parade around in a leopard coat, walk on a tiger skin rug.  And the rhinos? We murder them for their horns so we can grind them into powder. For impotence! Heck, what’s the matter with Viagra. Do we have to kill wildlife for an erection?

It’s that kind of shoot-ourselves-in-the-foot stupidity, all of those kinds of petty human feelings that Spock had to constantly fight within himself.

We couldn’t help but love Spock because he mirrored our everyday internal struggle to balance compassion against greed, awareness against ignorance, hatred against understanding, love against fear.

And our Earthling, Leonard Nimoy: actor, writer, singer, producer, director, poet, photographer, exceptional human? He was able to show us that if a conflicted Spock could learn to balance reason with emotion, then so can we.

RIP Leonard Nimoy, let us hope your ideals, both on screen and off, will live long and prosper.


TheOrganHarvestersBette COVER

The Organ Harvesters (Assent Publishing) Winner! The 2014 Stellar Sci-fi Contest For Science Fiction Dystopian Novel.

A damning evaluation of a system that had put technological advancements ahead of human rights, and protection of the environment.

“Must-Read Dystopian Thriller.”