"What happens when we get tired letting Trump divide us?"  

SUNDAY PRINT EDITION 9/24/19 - Since the 2016 election, how many loved ones have you stopped calling, blocked, unfollowed or unfriended? How many friends and family members do you simply avoid these days, choosing to skip your niece's wedding or make other plans for the holidays? How many of you, like me, just stopped going home? And how long until we all decide that neither our adoration nor our disdain for Donald Trump is worth abandoning the people we love?
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"No consequences for men in the new abortion laws"  

This new definition of  when life begins should be prompting legal questions. Where is the list of actions required, under penalty of law, for fathers? If life starts at conception, shouldn't the father be required to pay for 50 percent of the medical bills incurred during pregnancy? If the father is not married to the mother, will she be allowed to use his health insurance? Can she claim the fetus on her taxes? Can she take out life insurance immediately and, if she miscarries, collect death benefits? Can the father? If the mother has a difficult pregnancy and cannot work or has to go on bed rest, will the father be required by law to support her financially? What will be the penalty for a father abandoning a fetus? How many years in prison? Will he have to pay a fine? If he has no money, will the state cover his child support payments? For how long?
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"Kentucky: where no one sees guns as part of the problem"

Guns and gun ownership are sacrosanct here, and people who do not live in rural America do not understand what are and are not acceptable topics of conversation. Talk of church and prayer and getting back to 'the good old days' is the norm here; talk of gun reform or gun control is not; and talking openly outside this norm, especially if you are a business owner, can hurt your family, your livelihood.
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"A Stepmother, Losing Her Marbles"

I'd long lost the fun of the game.  I saw only how I'd used the game like the smiling façade of a carnival barker, the mask I wore while I tried to figure out who the hell I was.  See the happy new wife, still having plenty of sex!  Plunk.  See the smiling stepmother, proving to all those who warned her off - Do you know what you're getting into?  Those kids will ruin your marriage. Have you lost your senses, your marbles, your mind? - that she can love, and be loved by, someone else's children.
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"Saying 'me too' isn't enough. Women have to stop excusing men."

The truth is, beyond the confines of coastal news and entertainment, much of white, churchgoing middle America accepts both Trump's "locker room talk" excuse and his wife's lackadaisical "boys will be boys" defense. Many of the women I meet here in Kentucky - of all ages - do not follow national news, much less national politics. They also tend to follow their pastors', or their husbands', talking points: Clinton can't be trusted, she thinks she's a man, she should look at her own husband and her own marriage.  I suspect they looked at their own marriages and families, as well. Was Trump any different in his rhetoric from their own husbands, their brothers, their fathers?  Their pastors? What could they do? Men have needs.
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Teri Carter is a writer living in Kentucky.  She is working on her first book.

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