45 Sadness


He is my president, the 45th president of the United States of America.  Like many Americans I  hoped for the best and told myself I would to give him a chance.

That was January 20th

As of the February 19, I am mortified, embarrassed and sad.

Doing a reality check I asked myself, am I a sore loser, am I angry?

Disappointed yes, its one of many disappointments I’ve experienced when the best man lost.    When 43( George W) won I was dissapointed. There weren’t statements or questions in his character that led me to believe he might damage the country.

In less than 30 days, 45 has manage to damage our image. He has managed to bring the stability of the United States into question.   He has insulted our allies and caused most of us to be on constant alert. What will he do or say today?

Despite all the alternative facts, I’m not in shock.  President 45 and Candidate Trump are the same person.   I’ve never been at odds with his supporters, in fact I understand why they supported him.  While his candidacy has  awakened a racist element ,I don’t subscribe to the notion that all of his supporters are racists.  However since the election, some of my Indian, Mexican and Iranian friends have been attacked, some physically.  The citizenship of anyone with an accent is now questioned.

I find it difficult to respond, whenever one of my international friends ask why-how was he elected?  I lay of lot of the blame on my candidate, Hillary Clinton, and the other candidates,Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, Bernie Sanders, Lindsey Graham, Martin O’Malley,Carly Fiorina, John Kasich, Rick Perry and Jeb Bush.     Not one of these candidates stepped forward the day or the after he made that racist statement about Mexicans.   No one said this isn’t acceptable, he is wrong and doesn’t represent my  America!  Jeb Bush who’s wife is Mexican, their  children have relatives in Mexico was uncomfortably silent.   We have seen the careers of sportscasters and other notable individuals end, after making racists comments.  One wonders how successful he would have been if one or more of the candidates immediately spoke out against him.

The root of my sadness comes from the news.  Rarely a day passes without a  an international misstep by 45 or someone in his administration which is later blamed on the evil media. It also comes from Social Media.

There is an upside…..

People are awake!  There are daily demonstrations all over the country.   The Women’s march gave me hope.  I participated in the Muslim demonstration at Sacramento International.   One demonstration I wont participate in is “45 isnt my President”  With so many demonstrations I worry that they will eventually lose their impact.

To counter my sadness, I limit the time I spend of social media and watching the news. With so many people in shock, one thing is missing is humor. SNL has been a god send for me, through the writers I can exhale.

I’m gonna be okay, so will the rest of us.   Please don’t recommend therapy or snappy happy pills. I promise I wont throw myself in traffic or eat a case of Lil Debbie treats.  Its not that serious. I am an an optimist, today is today, and in time it will get better.

I wish more people would refer to him as 45.  The narcissist loves hearing his name and 45 would make him crazy, or are we too late.?

CityFella

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Could Norway follow Sweden’s lead and introduce a third gender?


Could Norway follow Sweden’s lead and introduce a third gender?
The leader of Labor’s youth wing said that Norwegians should be able to identify themselves whoever they want in their passports and other official documents. Photo: Stian Lysberg Solum / SCANPIX
Norway’s Labour Party, the largest party in parliament, will consider backing the introduction of a third gender, broadcaster NRK reported.
Labour’s programme committee will debate the introduction of the third gender category so that Norwegians would no longer need to define themselves as male or female in their passports and other official documents.
Labour’s draft party programme for 2017-2021 states that the party “shall consider the introduction of a third gender category”.
Although the proposal is only under the early stages of consideration, Labour committee member Mani Hussaini suggested that Norway should follow the lead of neighbouring Sweden, which adopted the gender neutral pronoun ‘hen’ into official use in April 2015.
Hussaini, who is the leader of Labour’s youth wing AUF, said ‘hen’ could also be used in Norwegian as a gender-neutral alternative to ‘han’ (he) and ‘hun’.
“I believe that all people should be allowing to live out their identity and thus the law should adapt to reality rather than the other way around,” Hussaini said.
“I think that for example in the passport it could show that one is neither male nor female, but belongs to a third gender category, thus a ‘hen’,” he added.
The idea of a ‘hen’ is not entirely new to Norway. The social-liberal party Venstre proposed the introduction of a third gender in April 2016 but it failed to gain traction.
Likewise, Sweden’s adoption of ‘hen’ has not been without controversy. The pronoun sparked massive debate in 2012 when a publisher decided to use it in a children’s book. But others argued that ‘hen’ is not meant to replace gendered pronouns. Instead, it allows speakers to refer to a person without having to mention the gender if they don’t know it, if the person is transgender, or if the information is considered irrelevant.
Ultimately, the Swedish Academy agreed to include ‘hen’ in its official dictionary, Svenska Akademiens ordlista, in 2015.
The Local

Stockholm named one of world’s best gay cities


Stockholm named one of world's best gay cities

Stockholm is one of the world’s best cities for gay people, according to a new ranking.

LGBTQ travel site GayCities collected more than 23,000 votes from its members and named Stockholm as the winner in the Up-And-Coming category.

“Sweden has always been a the forefront of the LGBTQ rights movement, so we are proud to provide Stockholm with the Up-And-Coming award in the Best of GayCities2016,” Tim Winfred, director of marketing at Q Digital which is behind GayCities, told The Local.

The Swedish city was picked ahead of US hubs Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Richmond and Buffalo.

“As the only non-American location in the category, Stockholm received one-third of all fan votes and beat several other great cities,” added Winfred.

San Francisco took home the top crown as Best City of 2016, with Orlando in Florida winning City of the Year. The only other European cities featured were London and Berlin  which were tied in the Best Singles Scene category, and Madrid, named a Foodie Paradise.

A major gay rights group earlier this year praised Sweden for recent work to promote transgender rights, and for creating more information for and about the young LGBTQ community.

The Nordic country did then fall from fourth to twelfth place in its ranking, however ILGA-Europe explained that the drop was more a result of other nations improving their policies than life in Sweden getting worse for gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender people.

The Local

Gonorrhea could become incurable, Sweden warned


Gonorrhea could become incurable, Sweden warned

The number of gonorrhea infections reported in Sweden has increased yet again, at the same time as experts warn that a strain could become incurable

The Local

New statistics from Sweden’s Public Health Agency (Folkhälsomyndigheten) show that by November 2016 1,625 gonorrhea cases had been reported in the country last year, compared to 1,535 during the same time period the year before.

That’s despite safe sex campaigns, and Swedish doctors previously highlighting that the number of gonorrhea infections had more than double in the decade between 1995 and 2015.

“There are several factors which have contributed to the growth. One of them is that more cases are detected now because access to tests has increased since ordering them online was made possible,” Folkhälsomyndigheten’s Elin Jacobsson told The Local.

“Gonorrhea has lived in the shadow of chlamydia somewhat, which is the most common STD in Sweden, but since a few years back both chlamydia and gonorrhea can be detected by the same test.”

The number of people taking the combined test for chlamydia and gonorrhea in Sweden increased by 20 percent in 2015, leading to 390,000 testing themselves that year, up from 330,000 in 2014. Test numbers for 2016 are not yet available.

Folkhälsomyndigheten believes that awareness about the disease may still be too low, and also sees decreasing condom use in Sweden as a concern.

“The number of cases of gonorrhea reported was generally low for a long time, which means that awareness about the infection could be low. It’s very important that people who have unprotected sex are offered tests and discussions about condom use,” Jacobsson explained.

“Condom usage is too low in Sweden: it has dropped since the 80s and 90s when the fear of HIV was high. Chlamydia is not perceived as similarly serious, and as a result of that the incentive to use condoms isn’t as high. We also know that the number of sexual partners during a lifetime has increased and people don’t always make a rational risk assessment,” she added.

The most common way for gonorrhea to spread is through sex without a condom, though it can also spread through oral sex. The average age bracket of those infected in 2016 was 28-29, the majority of whom were men.

Both gonorrhea and chlamydia can lead to reduced fertility if not treated. And a real concern is that the current antibiotic treatments could stop working, leading to strains of gonorrhea becoming incurable.

“The increase is worrying because it could become incurable as multiresistant bacteria grows. For one kind of gonorrhea in particular there is currently only one kind of antibiotic which can cure it,” Jacobsson warned.

“People are actively looking for new antibiotics, but we could end up in a situation where the cure which exists stops working.”

In Sweden, gonorrhea and chlamydia are subject to the country’s law for communicable disease control (smittskyddslagen), which means anyone who suspects being infected is required to get a test.

Symptoms include a burning sensation when urinating and bloody or red and swollen eyes.

Swedish Nazi group hails Trump in largest demo yet


Swedish Nazi group hails Trump in largest demo yet

Swedish Nazis cross Stockholm’s Strömsbrön on their way to the parliament. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Sweden’s neo-Nazi Nordic Resistance Movement (NMR) mounted the biggest march in its history on Saturday, with its leadership saying the election of Donald Trump in the US marked the start of a world revolution.

Five people were arrested and two were injured in Stockholm on Saturday as an estimated 600 far-right demonstrators marched from the central Kungsträdgården park to Mynttorget, the square where Sweden’s parliament is based in historic Gamla Stan.
“A number of people have been held. They were aggressive at one of our barriers,” Kjell Lindgren, a press spokesman for the Stockholm police said. He said that police had registered two cases of violent rioting, which carries a maximum four-year sentence. At least twenty others were detained for the duration of the march.
The NMR, set up in 1997, promotes an openly racist and anti-Semitic doctrine, and press commentators had questioned the wisdom of authorizing Saturday’s rally, given the likelihood of violence.
According to a reporter from the anti-Nazi Expo magazine, Per Öberg, the Nazi group’s press chief, told the gathered crowd that Donald Trump’s election was a sign that a world revolution was beginning.
Also speaking was Vera Oredsson, a lifelong Nazi who was a member of the Hitler youth as a child growing up in Nazi Germany, and Fredrik Vejdeland, the group’s head of strategy.
According to Expo, Vejdeland expressed his support for a proposal to break up Bonnier, the media empire which owns the Dagens Nyheter, Expressen, Sydsvenskan and Dagens Industri newspapers, and the the TV4 television network.
Bonnier is controlled by the Bonniers, one of Sweden’s richest Jewish families.
According to Expo, when Vejdeland began talking the crowd began to chant “Hang them, hang them”.
An AFP photographer said the Nazi marchers were easily outnumbered by the thousands of anti-fascists who came to protest their presence.
Swedish police said the counter demonstrators pelted the neo-Nazis with snowballs and bangers.
“A lot of loose objects, including snow, ice, bangers and fireworks of various kinds have been thrown,” Lindgren said. “I have not heard that anyone has been harmed, but it is possible that they have been.”
Police spokesman Lars Byström told TT news agency that a policeman was hit by a demonstrator, and a second individual was injured in circumstances that were unclear.
Roads were blocked and bus traffic affected in parts of central Stockholm as a result of the demonstration, which was set to continue until about 15.30.

They found love during a layover


A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage

Justus and Emma

A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together – now they’re heading for marriage

Closeness, selflessness, and pleasure; falling in love is a strange but wonderful human experience.

It is a state of intimacy that we relish living, but due to its abstract nature we rarely pay attention to it. We may not understand love, but we know very well that it “conquers all.”

For the 32-year-old Kenyan Justus Mwita, he never expected to be caught by his then Swedish girlfriend’s unblinking eyes, which left him both taken aback and pleased while he was waiting for his next flight to Nairobi at Doha’s international airport (Qatar).

“It was April 2011 when I had an eight-hour-long flight connection in Doha. I was sitting in the café alone; Emma was sitting with a friend at the table in front of me. We made eye contact but didn’t dare approach each other.

“Nonetheless, her eyes were very still on mine; she had a very assertive gaze. She looked bold and attractive. She felt refreshing.”

While she was waiting to fly back to Sweden after a vacation in Thailand with her friend, Justus was heading back to Nairobi, his home town. He wanted to dedicate his five-year pre/post-graduation experience of Malaysia in Kenya.

The flight connection unexpectedly changed Mwita’s plan. It matched him with his Swedish sweetheart.

“I left the café and was roaming the airport to kill time, I kept thinking of her, and wished that we could meet again. In a few minutes, I found myself caught by Emma’s eyes again, and said: ‘oh my god, what am I going to do now’”.

“She approached me. We greeted each other. When she and her friend asked me to sit with them, I replied: ‘what!’ I was surprised.”

After this, the pair began a seemingly endless talk.

“We watched the sun rise together. The airport was super new and the glass was crystal clear. Emma’s friend fell asleep, and then talked about everything as if we had summarized each other’s history in few hours. It felt wonderful. Those moments were timeless.”

An eight-hour-long chat with a stranger is obviously a sign of chemistry.

“Even at that point I wasn’t expecting things to go further. Usually, flight passengers mingle in fleeting discussions at airports, just to pass the boring waiting hours.”

“But this time it was different and unusual. My flight was 45 minutes earlier than Emma’s, she accompanied me to the gate and gave me a very warm hug, after exchanging our email addresses.”

Parting out of necessity – but not for long.

“We didn’t have any contact the first two months after leaving the airport, because we couldn’t find each other on the internet. I sent her an email and didn’t get a reply. I then said, OK this isn’t going to happen.”

But she found him again.

“In May 2011, I got a message from Emma on Facebook, after she had looked for me and finally found me. We kept communicating and decided to meet again.”

Kenya and Sweden: far by distance, close by intimacy.

“Eight months after meeting at the airport, Emma visited me in Kenya on a seven-week vacation. She saw my family and my country, and I saw her beauty.”

This time they fell in love under the Kenyan sun.

“Those seven weeks were enough to make us sure that it was love, and we decided not to part from each other.”

“In August 2011 I visited Emma on Sweden’s Midsummer, and spent an unforgettable two months in Dalarna with her, before I finally moved to settle down with her in December of the same year.”

The Kenyan-Swedish couple have been living together since then, and are planning to tie the knot as soon as their circumstances allow.

Emma makes Justus feel better, she loves him the way he is – despite laughing at his strange Swedish accent.

And for him, her meticulousness is no reason for not to love everything in her, and consider her a godly ‘bliss’.

It says it all in Justus’ answer when asked what Sweden means to him. He sighs deeply with relief: “Emma”.

Swedes moved to tears by this adorable prank on old man


Swedes moved to tears by this adorable prank on old man

This video of a group of Swedish children putting a smile on a pensioner’s face shows how easy it is to spread joy.

By:Emma Lofgren/The Local

Filmed at a Stockholm train station, the clip shows an elderly man alone on the platform, waiting for his train, when a group of children run up to him.

“What’s your name?” asks a young boy. He replies ‘Erling’. That’s when the magic begins.

The kids begin to adorably belt out the lyrics to a well-known Swedish song, a traditional tune usually sung in nursery schools to teach children the names of their classmates.

“Erling is here and Edith is here. It’s so fun that Philip is here. In our happy gang, Nova is here today. Oh, it’s fun, so fun,” they sing as the stunned pensioner looks on.

At the end they hug him and run off, leaving the man with a huge smile on his face.

Olle Öberg, one of the members of video pranksters Sthlm Panda behind the viral clip, told The Local on Friday that they had filmed the video together with Stockholm-based children’s choir ‘PopKids’.

“We wanted to spread joy,” he said.

It appears they succeeded. Not only did the children move the man to tears, by Friday afternoon the clip had been viewed more than 300,000 times online, with many revealing they too got teary-eyed watching it.

When they hugged him I melted. This is too much cuteness,” commented one on YouTube.

“I thank you for making an oldie feel lively again,” wrote another.