Archive for September, 2015

Check out the BOOK TRAILER for Linda’s new novel!
Linda K. Sienkiewicz is the author of In the Context of Love, a newly released novel that deals with love, family secrets and sexual violence. She is widely published in print and online.  

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CHRISSIE HYNDE: Rock N’ Roll but No Role Model

by Linda K. Sienkiewicz

Chrissie Hynde, rebel rocker from The Pretenders, has stunned feminists (along with most sensible men and women) by claiming it was her fault when several bikers drove her to an abandoned house and sexually assaulted her. She says she brought it upon herself for trying to play nice with guys who have “I (heart) rape” written on their t-shirts: “Technically speaking, however you want to look at it, this was all my doing and I take full responsibility.”images-2

Many women view Hynde as a heroine and a feminist, but there are things about her that never set quite right with me. Consider the lyrics to “977” from “Last of the Independents”:

He cried because of me
He hit me with his belt
But his tears were all I feltimages-1
When I saw my baby cry
I knew he loved me

When you try and cut me down
And push me back
If I attack your attitude
I rise up to the challenge ’cause
I like to taste the sugar of your violent mood

I think most people would agree that love is not hitting your lover with a belt, and violent moods have nothing to do with sugary sweetness. Her recent statements about rape have convinced me she isn’t worthy of my admiration for anything other than some good tunes. (more…)

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Luque PhotoLuis M. Luque is still struggling to finish his first novel. He served as a U.S. Navy mass communications specialist for 20 years and now works as a writer-editor. He is also a 2010 graduate of the Stonecoast MFA program. He and his wife, Vera, live in Newnan, Georgia.

How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love The Donald

by Luis M. Luque

dtimagesDonald Trump is a man, a human being. So we’re told anyway. Whatever he is, Trump is also a myth, a legend, a reality TV star, a corporation, a misogynist, a prognosticator, a Twitter feed, a brand, a bully, a braggart, a boor, a ratings bonanza, a bombastic billionaire buffoon blinded by ego, a bloviating blowhard for the entertainment of the blogosphere, a bumbling big-mouthed businessman blundering back and forth between banks and bankruptcy, and perhaps most surprising of all, a serious presidential candidate—at least in the minds of people fooled by what they think sounds like blunt talk about important issues.idtmages-1

A friend of mine believes Trump is a Democrat masquerading as a conservative Republican, that, in other words, he’s a troll, a living showcase for some of the GOP’s worst excesses—jingoism, racism, arrogance, lack of concern for the most vulnerable—and as such, my friend believes, Trump is herding voters toward the more sensible, or least harmful, political party. How I wish it were so.

I see Trump as an old-style tent revivalist minus religion, a carnival barker who barks only in superlatives, “I’ll build the biggest and wall ….” “I’ll get the best deal from the Chinese ….” “Hillary Clinton is the worst secretary of state ….” Trump uses an old playbook in new ways, all for his personal glorification. It’s a wildly successful playbook, but those taken in by its two basic schemes tend to regret briefly and forgive themselves too soon for being fooled, before they immediately begin falling for the next charlatan (Ben Carson? Ted Cruz? Rand Paul? Mike Huckabee?) to pick up the old dog-eared copy and wrap it in a shiny new cover.

The two basic schemes of these old-style fear mongers are nativism and populism. Nativism is probably one of the oldest effective political tactics we know. It consists of blaming an Other, usually an Outsider, for most of a nation’s problems. (more…)

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Michael BarryMichael Barry is a writer who lives in Boston, MA. He received his B.A. in Financial Economics from St. Anselm College and his MFA in Creative Writing from the Stonecoast Program at the University of Southern Maine. Check him out at MichaelBarryWriter.com.


by Michael Barry

A lot of things have been said about Justin Bieber since he jumped onto the music scene and into tabloids. Not that truth and myth are all that different anymore. I have been a fan of the music though not so much the person. I find it hard to blame him though, for how things have gone down. It wasn’t hard to predict.

jbimages-1So when I saw Bieber break down on stage last night it wasn’t exactly a new thing. Anybody remember Selena crying on stage, or in that music video? This isn’t really new ground for anyone involved. Plus the obvious VMA publicity machine. The perfect place for temper-tantrums and quasi-cries for help. MTV: The celebrity good Samaritans.

And as I watched Justin cry and heard that Selena had already left, I couldn’t help thinking that it is probably so much more than them, that this could be a cry for help from someone who has nobody to cry to. Justin Bieber might actually be hurting. It’s hard to recognize that these people have feelings, but anyone who watched the “Comedy Central Roast of Justin Bieber” could tell how uncomfortable he was being piled upon like that. There’s a pretty simple explanation: he cares. (more…)

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