Monday, August 24, 2015


Water is essential to human life, religion is not. Some people have easy access to water, some do not. Some people are discriminated against, some are not. Some people get a lot of attention paid to them, some get almost none. Some people have lived in the United States for a long time, others have not.

Not too long ago, CBS Sunday Morning, which I watch religiously every Sunday, ran a segment called The Water Lady: A savior among the Navajo:

It's easy to miss this corner of the Navajo Nation, just 100 miles west of Albuquerque. Most things pass the Reservation right by, including progress.

Many of the roads here are unpaved. Electricity is spotty. Unemployment in the area hovers near 70 percent.

But perhaps most shocking of all? An estimated 40 percent of the people who live here don't have access to running water.

"We don't use the sink because there's no running water," said Loretta Smith.
Smith and her husband share a small mobile home with their disabled seven-year-old granddaughter, Brianna.

With no indoor plumbing, what little water the family has inside is carried in, bucket by bucket, stored in plastic barrels outside.

Cowan asked, "Do you feel sort of forgotten out here?"

"Yes, for sure," said Smith.

The area's main source of drinking water is miles away, in the parking lot of the St. Bonaventure Indian Mission, in the town of Thoreau, New Mexico.

Getting water here can mean a 100-mile round trip for some families, and the Mission's office manager, Cindy Howe, says many don't even have access to a car.

So what happens when they run out? "If they don't have any water, it's just, they don't have any water," said Howe.
This is a story that I had not heard before, yet nearly every day I hear the story of how bad the drought in California is:
On a recent sweltering Saturday afternoon, I submerged my guilt and filled the bathtub halfway for my 3-year-old twins to play in.

It was their first bath in months. The early childhood rituals of spiky-haired tub photos and endless play in lukewarm bath water are foreign concepts to our two girls, who were born in 2011 at the beginning of an epic drought in California that shows no sign of abating.

I told them this was a treat — an exception to the five-minute shower rule strictly enforced by my husband — and reveled in their delight as they pretended to be mermaids, floated and splashed each other with glee.
A tap that provides water is better than one that does not. Don't get me wrong, I feel for all of these people. I am not trying to make the mother in California into a villain. This mother actually uses the water shortage to teach her children some very valid lessons. My point is about some water versus no water. It is about how the media frequently does not care to run stories about the disenfranchised. Thank you CBS Sunday Morning for providing your informative piece on the plight of the Navajo.

Allow me to explain my opening paragraph:

Water is essential to human life, religion is not. Ted Cruz was foremost in my mind when I wrote this. Anger wells up inside of me when he goes on and on about "religious persecution". He cares more about "long-standing monuments" than he does about people. Let me clarify things a little bit. The "long-standing monuments" Cruz is referring to are specifically Christian, and Cruz does care about people, as long as they are Christian. Ted Cruz is running for President. His priorities are completely out of whack. Children without water should matter more to a Presidential candidate than imaginary "assaults" on Christians.

Some people have easy access to water, some do not. Well, I already covered this.

Some people are discriminated against, some are not. I partially covered this, however, the words of Ted Cruz resurface here again. The Navajo face actual discrimination and persecution. Ted Cruz seems to only care about imaginary discrimination and persecution. He should be like Lee Cowan (CBS Sunday Morning) and talk about real problems. He could also talk about his proposed solutions to real problems. Instead, his best proposal to the imaginary problem of atheist "assaults" on Christians is an imaginary one, which is to associate atheists with the Taliban.

Some people get a lot of attention paid to them, some get almost none. I'll ask some questions to illustrate this one. How often do you see news about Ted Cruz? How often do you see news about the California drought? How often do you see news about the water problems of the Navajo?

Some people have lived in the United States for a long time, others have not. Once again Ted Cruz is bellowing inside my brain. Cruz was born in Canada, I'm sure that the Navajo children without water were probably born in the United States. Cruz's father was born in Cuba, and two of his paternal great-grandparents were from the Canary Islands in Spain. I am not a nationalist, I am in favour of "no countries" therefore none of this really matters to me other than the fact that it helps me make my point. In the spirit of fairness I searched the internet for Cruz's position on immigration and had a hard time finding anything of substance. Ixquick says his official site is Looking at this site is revealing. I can't help but think of all the televangelists, those of little substance and factual evidence, but lots of self-promotion and pleas for your money. My search revealed that Cruz has said:  “There are 110,000 agents at the IRS. We need to put a padlock on that building and take every one of those 110,000 agents and put them on our southern border.” That statement seems to be more about the IRS than immigration, yet it does reveal his build a wall and keep them out mentality.

I also found:
At one point, Cruz was interrupted by a small group of immigration protesters holding a sign that read, "CITIZENSHIP NOW."

"I appreciate your expressing your First Amendment rights," Cruz said. "You're welcome to come to a town hall and I'll answer your question. Tonight, we're focusing on religious liberty."

"U.S.A., U.S.A., U.S.A.," the audience chanted as they were escorted out by event staff.
It seems that "religious liberty" and "religious persecution" are the only things he will talk about. They are not the only things he wants to talk about, they are literally the only things he will talk about, and if you want to discuss something else you will be escorted out. End of discussion. To be fair he does talk about other topics, but he sure does love the religion theme.

I also found Ted Cruz on Immigration:
  • End Obama's illegal amnesty via Congress' checks & balances. (Nov 2014)
  • Defund amnesty; and refuse any nominees until rescinded. (Nov 2014)
  • No path to citizenship for 1.65 million illegals in Texas. (Oct 2012)
  • Give police more power to ask about immigration status. (Jun 2012)
  • Boots on the ground, plus a wall. (Apr 2012)
  • Triple the size of the Border Patrol. (Mar 2012)
  • Strengthen border security and increase enforcement. (Jul 2011)
If you are still with me, my point here has been said by others before. It is a simple and perhaps simplistic one. It is that the Native Americans were here first. We took away their land, many of their lives, their lifestyle, and their water. Perhaps we need to remember this before we pontificate on the issue of immigration.

If our "do nothing Congress" ever decides to do something, I hope the first thing they do is to solve the problem of water for the Navajo.

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