Convenient? Yes. Horrible for the environment? Yes.

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Just within the last couple of months, Americans have seen reports of large companies and individual states developing plans to get rid of plastic drinking straws.  Perhaps you are wondering if ridding ourselves of these tiny pieces of plastic will make much difference in our world today.  The answer probably lies somewhere between “yes and no” at this point.  

Plastic Pollution Coalition CEO Dianna Cohen recently stated that, “They’ve (straws) been designed to be used for a very short amount of time, and then tossed away.  We look at straws as one of the gateway issues to help people start thinking about the global plastic pollution problem”.

Basically, our world does have a significant amount of plastic that goes to waste and ends up contaminating our land and water sources.  By banning the use and production of plastic straws, citizens and large corporations begin a transition of using less, and hopefully less, plastic substances.

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Hello.  It’s been quite awhile since I’ve posted anything on here.  I guess I got to the point where I felt like I was complaining about everything and not being very productive.  So I took a couple of years off from posting and focused on my farm and my job.  There have been so many times I’ve thought about jumping on here to vent about all the crazy things going on with our country, but instead of spending my time writing about them to maybe a few readers, I took the time to write letters to senators and congressmen instead.  Did it do any good?  Probably not.  Did it make me feel better?  A little.

There is one topic that continues to eat away at me, however, so I wanted to take a few minutes to spell out my thoughts while I’m waiting on a contractor to arrive to do some masonry repair.  So here goes…

I just think it can be so frustrating to hear a news story that you either know cannot be accurate, or you believe it to be true only later to find out that you were tricked!  It is very, very frustrating! 

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Why all the red?

Hello out there.  We’ve had a lot going on so I haven’t had a chance to post in awhile.  I’ve been staying late at the school almost every day as well, helping out with various functions and programs going on.  A student got caught with marijuana at school the other day, and it made me think a lot about the status of marijuana in our country.  Now, before I go on about how I feel that it should be legalized, don’t mistake that for me thinking it’s okay for a high school student to be using it, much less bringing it to school.

First of all, I’ve smoked marijuana numerous times in my life.  As I’ve gotten older, I just don’t seem to care for it anymore.  I do feel like it has many benefits, though, especially for people who suffer from different illnesses such as cancer.  Even if someone has not been diagnosed with a disease, I feel like marijuana has benefits for a lot of different types of people.  It helps people loosen up and relax, and gives them a couple of hours where they don’t really have to worry about all the important aspects of life.  For people who are sick, it can help alleviate pain, increase appetites, and help with anxiety, not to mention that it has caused cancer cells to shrink and die.

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Hello everyone.  I’ve had a busy couple of days.  The roofing contractor did an inspection and determined that we need a new roof because there were a lot of places where the wood was rotting and the shingles were all past their prime.  I’ve been on the phone with the insurance company and the bank for the past two days trying to hammer out all of the financial details of this large project.  The silver lining is that we won’t have to worry about any more roof leaks for awhile!

I also got news that a former student died from an opiate overdose yesterday.  She was such a good student when I knew her and ended up getting into a great college with a hefty academic scholarship.  I don’t think she did drugs when she was in high school, but you never know with kids these days.  One of my current students is friends with the girl’s younger brother so the news spread pretty quickly around the school.  We have started a fundraiser to set up a trust for her 3 year old son.

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Our roof is leaking!

Hello again.  I had to take the day off from work because my wife went out of town and we had a major roof leak that needs to be repaired as soon as possible.  So I’m sitting here at the farm waiting on the roofing contractor to get here to tell me how bad the damage is.  I’m hoping that insurance will help us out on this, but you can’t ever count on things working out the way you hope, right?

In the past, I would have gotten very upset about a big problem like this and spent days stressing out over the money I would have to spend, the headache I’d have from dealing with it, and the inconvenience of it all.  I guess as I get older, though, I’ve been learning to just be thankful for the fact that we have this wonderful farm to live on, we have a roof over our heads (even if it’s leaking right now), we have great friends and family to support us, and we both have jobs that we love.

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These books will cost a student more than my mortgage payment


Hello out there.  I spent the day helping some of my senior students work on college applications and essays.  I get to work with some of the smartest, driven kids…probably smarter and more driven than the majority of adults in this world.  Most of these kids have their lives mapped out ahead of them and know exactly what they want to do, while some just aren’t sure yet, which is perfectly fine.  My job is to help them figure some of it out and help them create a plan to get to where they want to be.

I met with a young lady today who is a straight A student, has taken advanced honors classes, AP classes, is the captain of the volleyball team, and participates in a number of other extracurricular activities.  She came into my office today looking extremely exhausted.  I asked her if everything was alright and she said yes but that she just needed to take a nap.  We had 30 minutes scheduled for our meeting and instead of discussing her college applications, I let the young lady lay her head on my desk and sleep.  I stepped out of the office and sat in the teacher’s lounge for the 30 minutes and of course my brain started churning.  Why is she so exhausted?  I’m assuming that it’s because she is involved with so many different activities and she has to study quite a bit for all of her advanced classes, she probably isn’t getting much sleep at night.

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Different cultures, all under one flag

For my first blog, I’m going to talk about an actual scapegoat in today’s society.  For the past 15 years or so, America has treated Muslims as the scapegoat for everything that is wrong with our country.  If you think about it and take a good look back in history, every minority group has been targeted and blamed for something in this country.

Is it the politicians or the media who are targeting groups, spreading lies and rumors, and getting the majority of the country on board?

People of Islamic faith, or Muslims, are very peaceful and loving members of society.  Yet, they are all blamed for the horrible acts of a handful of people.  Americans across the country are belittling people in their community because of their faith, all because they are told to hate these people.

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Smartphones prevent communication

Hello out there.  I hope everyone is having a great Sunday.  We got all of our farm chores out of the way just before the rain started pouring down.  There’s nothing better than sitting in my den with the windows open, listening to the rain beat down on the metal roof of the porch.  My wife went to town to do some shopping at Tractor Supply Company, and as much as I would have loved to go with her (wink wink), I decided to stay here.  So I’ve got a little bit of time to write another blog post.

Today I’d like to talk about how distracted our society is by the internet and social media.  Everywhere I go, I am amazed by how many people are staring at their phones instead of interacting with each other.  We went to eat at a restaurant in town last week because neither of us had the energy to cook a meal, and I counted one table (besides our own) in which the people were not looking at their phones.  No one was talking to each other, they barely talked to their waitress, and they barely even noticed that their food had arrived because they were all so engrossed with whatever they were looking at on their phones.

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Our wonderful farm

Welcome to the latest (and greatest) blog Skapegoat.  I just wanted to say hello to anyone who may read this blog.  You can learn a little more about me here.

I’ll be using this blog to ramble on about anything and everything.  My wife and I live on a farm with several animals, goats included, so that’s kind of where I came up with the name of the blog.

A “scapegoat” is something that takes the blame for something or someone else.  I feel that people are always placing the blame on someone or something else when things go wrong, which is a sad thing to see.  I wish people would take full responsibility for their actions (or lack of action) instead of blaming it on someone else.

I know my blog is spelled differently than the term I mentioned above, so don’t think I am a bad speller.  That is another pet peeve of mine, by the way.  I chose to spell it differently because, well, I just like to be different.

Anyway, I’ll try not to rant too too much in my blog posts about things that really rub me the wrong way, but I can’t promise anything.

I’ll be posting about my daily activities on the farm, at school with the high schoolers, and my viewpoints on different subjects.  Hope you enjoy!