A Letter to the Editor

On February 24, 2018 the Arizona Daily Star published a letter from Jo-Ann Marks. Her opinions are a jab at the suits in elected positions who create one catrastrophe after another.

“I am fed up with men who run for office and then can’t deliver. They can’t figure out DACA. They can’t figure out how to stop school shootings. They have never held the Bush administration for a fake war based on imagined WMDs that caused the death of many Americans and cost us trillions.

We need to stop this madness. Make lobbyists illegal. Elect women to run the government. We run everything anyway. We are the CEO of the family; we manage the household budget, settle the squabbles between the kids, advocate for them at school and march in protests. We keep an eye out for all kids.

What do our male counterparts do? Some of them prey on their staff and other subordinates. They are not honest in mind or deed. They are not brave. Women have to be, because we run everything in order to protect our families.”

Vote! People are angry and change is one mid-term election away. Vote!

I Read Your Sign – Mine is Libra


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Cape May, NJ
Cape May, NJ

If a quirky sign catches my attention, and many have, I’ll take a photo and add the image to my expanding collection. In these dreary days of winter weather and hashtag political nonsense, I have a distraction for my blogger friends. Wonderfully creative messages and opinions are often nailed with only a few words. Many of these signs gave me a smile and a perspective about people and their opinions.  I don’t have a picture of my favorite bumper sticker – Don’t Believe Everything You Think. I sold the ’94 Honda Accord, and the sticker went with the sale.

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Enjoy the slide show.    


Tax Credit for 2017


The 2017 donation checks are in the mail. Ten nonprofits made my list, and of those, two are cat shelters that my sister, who is now in feline heaven, has supported. The runners-up, fine organizations all, know where I live. In 2018 they will send mailing labels, calendars, dream catchers, stickers, nickels, bookmarks, maps, note pads, and photos of  children and animals in need of food, medicine, shelter, and compassion.

Last November I started to save bulk mail, and by the end of December I had a stack of envelopes. My name and address are linked to a segment of the political and social stratosphere. I receive nothing from the NRA, the Republican party, or religious organizations – except St. Jude’s Hospital, which I don’t count as secular. In some abstract way what I value and support has been synthesized. I imagine computer programs sending millions of potential donor profiles to advocacy organizations. That puts me on lists for animal shelters, nature preservation, social justice, literacy, population awareness, women’s health, shelters, recovery/rehab, and Tucson’s kid camp.

Remember the saying, You Are What You Eat? From the send-us-money letters I receive, I am correctly targeted. I use Charity Navigator (http://www.charitynavigator.org/) as a source to filter organizations. Many have a strong advocacy and persistence, but high administrative costs. When a CEO makes mega-bucks, I should be asking fill in the name for money. My bottom line: No contribution when an executive’s annual salary is a high six-figure income.

Best wishes to all for 2018. Let’s work to improve the health of our planet, and the lives of its people and animals.




Kiva Microloans – Give & Get


L-R: Rosa, Judy, Susan, Debbie                                                            Absent: Kathi K.

In 2009 Rosa, Judy, Debbie, Kathi, and I began making microloans through Kiva. (http://www.kiva.org/) We agreed that in a small way we would help women who needed money. At the start we each contributed $25 and invested $125, one project at a time. Loan repayments were eventual, and we were patient. Of our nine loans, two fell into default. When that happened we took the hit, added money to our Rainbow Women account, and help fund another project.

Kiva does not permit contact with a borrower, which is fine and understandable. We lost track of Amelia in Liberia, and our loan went into default. In 2014 the Ebola virus devastated the country. As much as we wanted to know about Amelia’s well-being, we were never told. Our second default occurred recently. Rochelle in South Africa needed money to purchase equipment for her daycare center and had repaid 55 percent of our loan. We understand that default is always a possibility.

Kiva projects are supported by individuals and groups. To reach a funding goal, projects need to attract many lenders. For example, we helped Aminata in Senegal raise $1,075. Twenty-two other lenders pitched in. Our next loan of $200 will cause a ripple effect. Improve the life of one woman and those around her will also benefit.

Here are photos of the amazing people we chose to help with a Kiva microloan.


Carmen, Peru

Carmen, Peru

Amelia, Liberia

Amelia, Liberia

Miriam.Columbia (2)

Miriam, Barranquilla, Columbia

Aminata, Senegal

Aminata, Senegal

Florinda, Peru (2)

Florinda, Morropon-Piura, Peru


Rochelle, Lenasia, South Africa

SanFelipe'sEffort.Mexico (2)

Zenaida Gonzalez, Group President – Estado de Mexico

Vicky, S.Sudan

Vicky, Gudele, South Sudan


Marusya,  Ovorhangai Province, Mongolia

Rainbow Women has made loans in education, agriculture, food, and retail. Kiva has 11 more categories to consider. Choosing a project is definitely a challenge. Everyone has a compelling reason for the loan. A woman in Vietnam needs a toilet. A woman in Ukraine wants to fix her roof and buy radiators. Fifty-nine women in the U.S. are looking for loans. A beekeeping project caught my eye – bees are universally vital. Others agreed, and the project has been fully funded. You might like to join the many individuals and groups who reach out and help through Kiva.

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