Some Mother’s Heart Is Crying

JD520435Global expansion is inching its way, step by step, across planet Earth––but some mother’s heart is crying.

Lives are being laid down in the Ukraine, Sudan, North Korea, Egypt, Syria and Nigeria––some mother’s child is dead.

Hate, spirited by greed and power, makes men do the detestable; violating the rights of other human beings––some mother’s heart is bleeding.

Some mother’s child in Nigeria is kidnapped from her school and thrown into a story that will mark her life forever––some mother’s heart is broken.

Every second, a mother is crying on this planet as she:

  • Watches her child destroyed by a bomb in a war that she didn’t start
  • Sees her child struggling against a disease for lack of proper medical care
  • Looks at her child starving from hunger in a world where plenty abounds
  • Observes her child drinking infested water that has enough bacteria to kill any animal.

Somewhere, some mothers’ hearts are crying.

Flowers, gifts, travel, and good eating––highlights of frenetic busyness design to show the priceless value of women and the joy of motherhood on Mother’s Day.

“What do you hear, Prophet? Tell me, what do you hear?”

“I hear the wailing of girls who have been kidnapped, sold into slavery, and sexually abused; I hear the voices of the Amintas’,  Shjahwanas’, Aishas’,  Asmas’,  Deborahs’, Ruths’,  Esthers’,  Kwantas’,  Kummanis’,  Larabes’, Jummanis’,  Fatimas’,  Palmantas’,  Aistatus’, Kabus’,  Yayis’, of this world.” And The Prophet began to cry.

“Prophet?”

“Shh, Shh.” The Prophet whispered.

A dark cloud appeared, and covering his ears, The Prophet said, “Oh, No!” And he shook his head as uncontrollable tears streamed down his face.

“What is it, Prophet? Tell me, what do you hear?”

“Some mothers’ hearts are crying.”

Yet, we celebrate Mother’s Day.

Photo on 2-13-14 at 2.30 PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shalom,

Pat Garcia

Rise Up My Love. The Winter Is Past And Gone.

This time last year my legs were shaky, and I was swaddling around in uncertainties. Disappointed in the progress of my first book I was pondering over whether or not I had the stamina I needed to be the kind of writer that I desired to be.  Rise up my love. The winter is over, the rain is past and gone.

Sure, I got encouragement from other writers.  I even flirted with self-publishing, just to prove a point to myself, but facing my own reality, I knew that wasn’t the problem. The real problem lay within me.  I needed to know within myself whether or not I had something to say, regardless of whether I wrote fiction or non fiction, regardless of whether I was writing a blog article for a senior editor on my platform or for my own blogs. That was the question, and as I said last year in my last blog article I was Caught On My Blindside.

Not to mention that I had surgery, wrestle with the complications of having a sick partner, and living in a foreign country.  But, those were secondary problems that only covered the face of the real problem: what was going on inside of me. Like the Ground Hog article written on February 1st, I tried to leave my hole, but I finally went back in my hole to contemplate my misère.

Anything different from the majority sticks out. I don’t care what it is, and whom you are. You can have the same bone structure, same color of skin and the same hair particles, but you will stick out like a sore thumb when your soul is not at peace with itself.  People recognize that something is going on with you.  They may not be able to identify it, but it hangs like a shroud between you and them until it is resolved.

So there I was in 2013 wrestling with myself in all areas of my life. Wrestling with my soul as I came to grips with the direction I was heading in, which brings me down to what I want to say. Rise up my love. The winter is over, the rain is past and gone.

You’ll find me writing fewer blog posts this year than I have in the past. Not because I have given up writing, but because I decided that what I write has to make a statement. I don’t want to entertain with my blogs. I am trying to jar the minds of men and women and challenge them think, to agree or to disagree with my opinion, in other words, to communicate. It is my desire to establish a dialogue of communication in my blogs.  That means that when I don’t have anything to say, I’ll keep my big mouth shut.

As my mouthpiece, my blogs reflect my experiences on my journey, my beliefs, my struggles, and my overcoming.  They mirror how I see the world.  This does not mean that my view is correct. Many times it might be twisted, but I will never know that unless I challenge myself to listen to what others have to say. Thus, the rhythm of my blogs appearances will change to the following:

  • Walk On – four times a year,
  • Garcia’s Talks about Apple Products – four times a year,
  • Pat Garcia Book Reviews – twelve times a year,
  • Pat Garcia and Everything Must Change – seven times a year,
  • Garcia’s Views on Body Soul and Spirit – four times a year,
  • Wind, Rain, Winding Roads and Sunshine – seven times a year.

This will also give me the time I need to concentrate  on looking for the right agent for my books, establishing a much larger author platform than I have, taking the needed writing courses to improve myself in the ever changing requirements, in the Literary field, and to attend writing workshops that will let editors, agents and publishers know that I am out there.

Some of you know that I am a singer and musician too.  I travel quite a lot, giving concerts and conducting workshops here on the European Continent.  Therefore, another reason I needed to structure myself was for my music. Sometime this year, I would like to record a blues CD in cooperation with music and lyrics from a Canadian musician whom I admire deeply.

Without writing and music or music and writing, I am an empty hull searching for air so I can breathe. Rise up my love. The winter is over, the rain is past and gone.

So, as I rise, letting go of the shackles that keep me from moving out into the unknown and launch out on the water before me, I hope to meet you along the way as I travel further.  I invite you to enter into a conversation with me on my blogs, on Facebook, on Twitter, on Linked in, on WordPress, on Blogger, on American Diversity Report or anywhere else that I might write and to let me know how you see things happening around you or share with me your view of your state, country, or the world, and to disagree with me when you have a different point of view.  Disagreeing points of view do not mean that we have to be enemies. It means that we stretch ourselves to learn from each other and hopefully come away respecting the other’s opinion.

Finally, I hope you will share your joys and triumphs.  There is nothing that makes my soul merrier than to be able to listen to others as they share their joys, their happiness, and their struggle to overcome.

Hence, I challenge you to rise and move towards your life’s purpose; to rise from wherever you have hidden yourself, to look at the winter of your journey and say, the winter is over, the rain is past and gone as you move towards that which you know to be your destiny.

 So, Rise up my loves wherever you are. The winter is over, the rain is past and gone!

Photo on 12-31-13 at 1.54 PM

Shalom,

 Pat Garcia

Peace

Unlike what most people think, peace doesn’t vegetate at MacDonald, Burger King, Wendy’s or Chic-fil-A. You won’t find it at a German diner, a French Cafe or at an Italian restaurant. Neither does it reside at your most favorite steakhouse, nor is its habitat found at your nearest bar.  Like a kernel as small as a mustard seed peace germinates in the hearts of men and women

As the year closes, I look back at 364 days that have been a challenge for all humanity living on planet earth.  Many people died.  Death became an acceptable disease in our societies.  We have become desensitized to the suffering going on in the world. We see children being bombed, maimed, dying of starvation, or some type of curable disease, and we’re thankful that it doesn’t happen in the western world.  We hear the cry for peace, the scream for reconciliation as the roar of machine guns, and the use of chemical weapons become more and more the mode of acceptance, and the guilty receives a slap on the hands for committing a naughty act, and we sit back and flip through the television channels.  Gone are the days when people would march on the streets protesting the violence that we see penetrating itself and spreading out on every continent. Our silence stamps our approval upon the acts being committed, and nothing changes.

We are becoming a hedonistic society that balances our inner mental health on whether or not we have the perfect body, the newest fashion, the largest house, the fanciest car, or the most money, and those things control our hearts. We show those countries living in poverty the values that are important to us, and these people yearn to have the same things. People born in poverty call it the good life.  We magnify this view through television, movies and the Internet, and they learn that a new Cadillac supersedes a sick child, a new Lexus wipes away the guilt of a nuclear catastrophe, the shine on a new Ferrari outweighs the use of chemical weapons against helpless people and a brand spanking new Mercedes take precedent over laws that forbid selling uranium to nations that repressed and terrorize their citizens.

Have we not learned our lessons from the horrors that took place from 1933 to 1945?

Let us not kid ourselves.  Those same weapons, bombs, guns or whatever that we are producing or sanctioning by not lifting our voices against the policies that are being construed by our governments for the sake of diplomacy, regardless of which country we come from or live in, are the stamp of approval for the destruction of mankind.  We are accessories to the fact and are destroying the souls and bodies of our children.

I am not a pacifist. Believe me, I am not so naive as to think or believe that all mankind can be lovey dovey on this earth. That would be an impossible wish from me that borders on foolishness and stupidity.  However, it is never too late to communicate and relate honestly with integrity towards one another.  People who come together under such an alliance can shake the cruelest of nations.

Thus, as I stand at the doorway of time watching as the year 2014 creep patiently towards us, my New Year’s Resolution resonates in six words, Let there be peace on earth.

Happy New Year everyone!

Photo on 12-31-13 at 1.54 PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shalom,

Pat Garcia

Thank You

During my blindside experience, I was not able to write as frequently in any of my blogs as I normally do.  I have to admit here that I am not a blogger that writes every week and, therefore,  was concerned about my extended infrequent appearances.

Thus, I was pleasantly surprised when I received an email from WordPress informing me that my blog Walk On had just celebrated its 100th  follower.  I would like to thank all of you that have been so faithful to follow and to comment on my Walk On Blog.

It is a pleasure to research the women I write about and an even more joyous pleasure to write about them.

Thanks to all of you for your support. You are simply the best followers, I know.

Walk On, I say, Walk On!

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Ciao,

Pat Garcia 

Caught-On-Your-Blindside

There are times when you wake up and wish you had not.  Nothing hurts; no pain in your body; family, friends, and neighbors are all excelling, and you are looking forward to the day ahead. Even though your day is scheduled so tight that you can hardly breathe, all is well with your world.  Yet, your early morning wake up disturbs you. You feel strange, restless, exposed, but to what you cannot say.

Like Job, you get up and while drinking your first cup of coffee:

  • You receive news about a death,
  • You feel a pain in a part of your body that is unfamiliar to you,
  • You read an email ending a treasured friendship,
  • Your boss informs you by phone, you have been put on the redundant list,
  • Your husband gets ill,
  • Your child is expelled from school,
  • Your bank check is not honored due to lack of funds,
  • Your old and faithful car needs some serious repairs that you were no aware of,
  • You’ve misplaced some important documents that you cannot find.

When events like this start taking place that take control of your life out of your hands, hold on, you’re caught-on-your-blindside.

Caught-on-your-blindside takes place without your being forewarned.  The night before you were dancing to the beat of boogie down baby, or half-heartedly listening to the woes of a friend as you planned your week, or trying to choose which securities you would buy with your bonus for signing on a desired customer for your company.

Suddenly occurrences take place that shake up your entire small world, and as you sit there wondering what will happen next, you yearn to hide yourself because the view in your life has been blocked––you’re caught-on-your-blindside.

That is what happened to the woman who had been given a son.  Married to an older man, she didn’t expect to have a child. She befriended the Prophet out of the kindness of her heart:

Her hospitality towards him,

Her consideration,

Her unselfishness,

Gave her the desire of her heart–a son.

Her son became ill while visiting the father in the fields, and he sent him home to his mother. She did all she knew to comfort him, but the child died as he sat in her lap.  Bang!  She was caught-on-her-blindside.

There is no way to escape being caught-on-your-blindside; No one is exempt:  Like David, before he became king, you run away from crazed people and sour incidences that test your commitment and your reason to live.  That you can’t see what is on the side of you, whether left or right, or even see through your rear window is natural:  And your front windshield is clouded over by foggy incidences that come at you, one after the other:  They block your view.

You can’t avoid the blindside either: many have tried, but all have failed.

Caught-on-your-blindside is not

A cultural thing,

A medical disease or sickness,

A mental illness,

A race problem,

A lack of intelligence,

A behavioral issue of whether you are good or bad,

Or something you did wrongly.

It does not stem from our bad choices.

It is a shy phenomena that pops up unexpectedly, tests our character, our integrity, our beliefs, and then it leaves just as stealthily as it came––in its own time.

It never wears out its welcome.

The year 2013 came in with a bang, and I welcomed in the year with gratitude in my heart. Yet, that did not exempt me from waking up at 2 AM on the very first day of the year, with a strange feeling. I felt as if I were losing ground under my feet, although I was lying in bed. When the first unexpected incident took place, I was speechless: It hit me in my gut:  I was caught-on-my-blindside.

Like Esther, I sat back and learned to hold on until my time had passed: There was no other option.

Family and friends cannot help you when you are caught-on-your-blindside.  They may give you advice, but usually, it doesn’t work. It may, however, ease your pain, make you laugh, or comfort you for a couple of minutes, but it doesn’t stop the occurrences from happening. You are caught-on-your-blindside.

What do you do when you are caught-on-your-blindside?

Being caught-on-my-blindside forced me to run to the source of my existence.

If anyone knew what was happening,

If anyone had the control,

If anyone had solutions,

It was the Creator whom I have given my complete trust.  Sure, there were days when I thought this will never end, but again, like Abraham, the father of the faith, I hoped against hope because God is faithful: He keeps his promises, one hundred percent.

So, if you wake up and find yourself caught-on-your-blindside, run to the source of your existence and ride it through until you have been given the ability to see clearly again.

Job did:

The woman with the son did:

Esther did:

David did.

Afterward they smiled: They were no longer caught-on-their-blindsides.  

Photo on 3-22-13 at 7.59 AM #3

 

 

 

 

 

Ciao,

Pat Garcia

The Champions Who Walked Among Us – Article 16 – The Grass Rooter

The United States had just entered the third year of the twentieth century when this infant girl opened her eyes in Norfolk, Virginia.

The year: 1903

The month: December

The Day:  the 13th

Little did she know that the quiet soul of one of America’s famous freedom fighters would depart life’s stage nine years, two months and twenty-eight days, after her entry on earth.  Neither did she know she would develop into a role similar to that of an earthworm, which converts organic matter into humus and improves the fertility of  the soil.

Like the earthworm, this baby would deliberately work the underground with her beliefs, with her philosophy as she reached out to ordinary people to help them to understand the system in opposition to the leaders of her time.  She gave people insight into the meticulous workings of democracy and proclaimed that strong people were more valuable than having one strong leader.  Raised up to educate enrich the soil necessary for advancement, she would become The Grass Rooter.

At the age of seven, her parents decided to move the family back to her mother’s hometown, a small rural area in Littleton, North Carolina.

It was here that the young girl was prepared for her purpose in life,

  • As she sat at the feet of grandmother listening to historical events that she had lived through,
  • As her   attention was captivated by the woman, when she talked about the degradation received through being whipped because of her refusal to marry her master’s choice of husband,
  • As she learned the unknown history of people that had not been recorded in the history books. 

Here, her hunger was satisfied for knowledge of the past, and her thirst was quenched as she waited on her future. The Grass Rooter incubated in the soil and grew in wisdom.

At the age of twenty-seven, The Grass Rooter graduated from Shaw University as the class valedictorian.  She left North Carolina–– her destination, New York City.

Because she saw the problem, The Grass Rooter began her work.  It had been played out before her eyes while living in North Carolina. She had a solution and was not unafraid to share it. The Grass Rooter believed firmly that the success of any nation rested upon the people at the bottom understanding the processes of legislation and government because the strength of any nation comes from the ground up and not from the top down.  Thus, she strove to inform and educate.  The Grass Rooter stretched her arms out to all. It was never a black/white issue with her.

“We are not fighting for the freedom of the Negro alone, but for the freedom of the human spirit, a larger freedom that encompasses all mankind.”(1)

Opposition came as is expected when it comes to educating the masses. Many leaders  reacted to this new way of thinking. They belittled the intelligence of the people by insisting that they must be led instead of taught. However, The Grass Rooter did not let this stop her: she increased her efforts and expanded her influence. She was one of the main proponents of Participatory Democracy.

1940, her election as a secretary with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) pivoted her into a position where she could help people.  She traveled throughout the South, knocking on doors, recruiting people, and implementing plans that mobilized the masses. Her hard work paid off.

In 1943, she was elected as the director of the branches. The first woman to hold this position, but her stance against elitism brought her face-to-face confrontation with the male leaders of the organization. Outspoken about her beliefs and her egalitarian ideas, she forced the leadership to decentralize its structure.

1957, The Grass Rooter traveled to Atlanta, Georgia, the home of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, better known to some as the SCLC.  Black ministers of the South had come together to initiate change within the society they were living in. She quickly earned the reputation as an organizer. The success of the Voter Registration Campaign in the South is mainly due to her organizational skills. However, three years of working with the SCLC showed her that her ideas were far beyond comprehension for the male leadership: She left the organization in 1960.

How do you react when you realize the withholding of knowledge causes the ignorance of the people? 

Would you work behind the scenes without any recognition and educate others?

1960, The Grass Rooter became involved with students from the South who had decided that enough was enough.

  • Location:  F. W. Woolworth
  • Target:  the lunch counter where so many black college students were allowed to work but not to sit down and eat.  

Four college students challenged the Jim Crow laws practiced within the state, and the Grass Rooter rose to the pinnacle of her crowning moment as an activist.  She pushed the SCLC to listen to these students and support them in their step of defiance.  Out of this protest, The Students for Non Violent Coordinating Committee better known as SNCC was born.

Wow, what a woman!

What dedication to her calling!

Wherever there was a need to bring understanding to the people, regardless of whether it was,

  • The NAACP,
  • The Voter Registration in the South,
  • The organization of the SCLC, 
  • The birth of the SNCC,
  • Speaking out against Apartheid in South Africa,
  • Standing up for the Puerto Rican Freedom movement,
  • Support for the International Women Movement for Freedom and Peace,

The Grass Rooter, the woman who believed in Social Change starting at the grassroots was somewhere in the background laying down fundamental principles that still apply today.

Ms. Ella Baker, the controversial woman

  • That was not keened on the elite
  • That was wary of anyone who was not willing to educate the people at the bottom,

Was willing to be a vessel of oil that  poured out into the lives of others. She was The Grass Rooter.

The year was 1986, the month December, the date: the 13th and The Grass Rooter, Ms. Ella Baker, eighty-three years old and still excelling in her call, still fulfilling her purpose in life was getting ready to celebrate her birthday.  Instead of celebrating, she heard the trumpet blow. It was time for her to Walk On.

Can’t you see her people?  She heard the call on her birthday; eighty-three years later, and Ms Ella Baker Walked On!

Can’t you see her as she smiled and looked  behind her at her legacy?

“What did you do, Ms. Ella Baker?

Tell me, what did you do?” asked the Prophet.

“Not much,” said the woman. “Not much.

Just organized the NAACP,

Educated and informed the masses,

Stopped over in Atlanta and organized the SCLC,

Went to the country towns down there in the South,

And set up Voter registration so it could move effectively.

Listened to the Students in Greensboro North Carolina,

Helped them to get support,

Marched with the Puerto Rican Freedom Movement,

Stuck my nose into the International Women Movement,

Kept my hands busy by standing up against Apartheid.

Not much,”  she said, “Not much.”

The Prophet laughed and asked, “Is that all?”

Ms. Ella Baker, The Grass Rooter, the Proponent of Social Change, the Activist that reached out to the people at the bottom, looked back at The Prophet and said with a bit of humor in her voice, “That’s all,” Prophet. “That’s all.”

 She Walked on people, Ms. Ella Baker Walked on!

Don’t tell me you can’t fulfill your purpose in life,

Sure it may be hard,

It may be that you aren’t recognized,

And no one knows you exist.

But fulfill your purpose in life.

Sooner or later,

You will rise.

Walk on People, I say, Walk On!

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Ciao

Pat Garcia

[1] http://www.supportellabakerday.com/Quotesby.html

 

But It’s Mother’s Day

What do you hear,” the child asked the Prophet, curious to know what was happening below the heavenly atmosphere they lived in, “What do you hear?”

“I hear mothers mourning over the lost of their young.”

“But it’s Mother’s Day,” the child replied.

“Oh, how well I know that,” answered the Prophet.

“So tell me what do you hear, Prophet? What do you hear?”  The child in its naivety thought the earth had gotten better.

“Silence, child, I hear a faint rumbling coming up from a far.”

“All right, I won’t let out one peeps, but promise me you’ll tell me what you hear?” And the child dance around the Prophet with joyous expectations.

“You have my promise. I will only tell you what I hear.”  Suddenly, the Prophet covered his ears. “Oh the rumble, it’s terrible,” shouted the Prophet. “It gets louder and louder.”

“Surely, it is the sound of  the people on earth celebrating and cheering as they honor their mothers,” the Child said.

“Shh, now, I hear it clearly,” The Prophet commanded.

“What is it?” The Child asked.

“It sounds like gunfire going off in schools, at homes, on streets––children killing children.”

“But it’s Mother’s Day.”

“Oh, How well I know that.” The Prophet mumbled.

“So tell me something good. Tell me of the songs you hear, or the flowers you see, or children honoring their mothers with surprises on this beautiful Mother’s Day.”

“Wait!” Said the Prophet. “Be still. I hear another cry”

“Oh, goodie. It’s about time you heard a beautiful cry.”

The prophet began to cry before the child, and he began to beat his hands against his breast.

What wrong, Prophet, what’s wrong? Tell me, what did you hear?”

“Like Rachel crying for her young ones over two thousand years ago, I hear mothers wailing; painful moans, no man can ever imagine, coming up out of the heart of women: mothers wailing for the lost of their young.”

“But it’s Mother’s Day, Prophet.”

“Oh, how well I know that,” the Prophet answered.

“So, what do you see on this beautiful day for mothers everywhere,” the child asked, hoping the Prophet would report about the presents that made mommies happy on their special day. Maybe, just maybe,  the child thought, the Prophet will let me look down and see the celebrations.

“Shall I tell you what I hear? Maybe then you’ll understand what I’m saying,” the Prophet said.

“All right.  Tell me, what do you hear, Prophet?  What do you hear?”

“I hear mothers wailing for the lost of their young;

Children, whose lives have been cut off by drunken drivers;

Children, whose lives are stopped short by guns in the hands of distorted minds;

Children, whose lives are prematurely ended by the scalpel;

Children, whose lives are snuffed out by bombs as they sleep;

Children, whose lives have been contaminated––destroyed by chemicals dropped from the air as man fights against man.

I see little people, like you, child, who have no voice

To speak out,

To protest,

To vote;

Their lives have been taken away without their consent.”

“But it’s Mother’s Day, Prophet. It’s Mother’s Day.

“Oh, how well I know that!” The Prophet answered.

 

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Shalom,

Pat Garcia

A Special Mother’s Day Tribute and the Introduction to the Article, But It’s Mother’s Day

This year’s Mother’s Day article, But It’s Mother’s Day, is a tribute to all those mothers who have lived through the agony of having a child precede them in death.  No mother expects to see her child leave this earth before she does: it is the mother’s heart that dreams of life–long life– for her children even before they are born.

I would also like to salute two women whom I have come to love, respect, and admire.

Micki Peluso, author of And The Whippoorwill Sang,[1] whose daughter’s life was cut off by a drunken driver.  Micki tells Noelle’s story, and therefore her own story with heart. Full of humor and wit, And The Whippoorwill Sang draws you into the Peluso family: it also takes you through a gamut of emotions from anger to hatred, to laughter, to tears that will force you to support a zero tolerance for people who drink and drive.

Linda Halpin is the author of an upcoming book about her son, Louie, who was shot down in New York City. As a mother, she was suddenly thrown into the woes of lost.  Louie was a child with a promise, a future boxer whose future stopped on a fatal afternoon as he innocently visited his friends. Linda’s book is expected to be release sometime this year.

Both of these women have gone through the dark night of their souls, and they have come through it with renewed strength to step up to the plate and speak out against violence that has been done, not only against their children, but against children all over the world.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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Shalom,

Pat Garcia


[1] Peluso, Micki,  And The Whippoorwill Sang,

The Champions Who Walked Among Us – Article 15 – The Dark Lady, The Unsung Heroine

  •  What would you do if your recognition and honor were stolen?
  •  How would you react when your research was appropriated for use without your knowledge and permission?
  •  What would you say to those who had violated one of the fundamental laws of the Hippocratic Oath of Science –– Thou shall not steal?

1868Benjamin Disraeli became  Prime Minister. The appointment lasted only a few months. General elections in the United Kingdom held that same year favored William Gladstone and his Liberal Party.[1]

1874, Disraeli returned to Parliament as Prime Minister and became the father of social reform. But after being defeated by Gladstone and his Liberals in 1880, Disraeli went into retirement and died in 1881.[2]

1914,  The First World War began.

1917, The Balfour Declaration was enacted.[3]

1918, The First World War ends.

1920,

The month:  July,

The date:  the twenty-fifth,

The day:  Sunday

In the middle of a European society filled with chaos and struggle, where mistrust and discrimination was widely practiced against a small group of people, a young baby was born into an affluent family. As her eyes opened to view the lights of the world, racism, anti-Semitism and suffrage were the dominating political and economical topics that occupied the minds of the people in the country of her birth.  Fear, envy, and jealousy surrounded her.  Suspicions throttled opportunities for this small ethnic group and the baby’s facial features pointed out with clarity her ethnicity.  The fact that she was born English could not eradicate the fact–– she was Jewish.

Born as a member of the female species, this young baby girl was unaware of the events that would hurl her into a clandestine intrigue against her and would test her ability to keep moving forward.  At the time of her birth, she could not predict that her Intellectual Property would be robbed nor would she have believed that she would become the victim of one of the most hideous crimes there is on this earth––a crime that has not been properly restituted up to this day–Espionage of knowledge.

The child was the second in the lineage from a family comprise of three boys and two girls. Her parents belonged to the Anglo-Jewry and practiced its traditions, as well as honored the traditions of the English Society, which was their birthplace.  Psychiatrist and Analyst Alfred Adler stated in his theory on birth order among children that the second child is the fighter, the challenger, the competitor sandwiched between the oldest and the middle child. This young woman certainly fitted this description.

According to my favorite biographer of her life, Brenda Maddox,[4] the young child knew her life was destined at the age of twelve. It was her dream to become a scientist, and The Dark Lady, The Unsung Heroine arose.

  • What would you do if you came into the world with your mission already defined and imbedded within your heart?

Throughout her life, the young woman thrived in a learning atmosphere. She mastered mathematics, geometry, the sciences and learned languages quickly.   Raised in an environment of love and respect, the idea that she was anything less than equal to others never came to her mind.  The Dark Lady, our Unsung Heroine was not a feminist,  yet, would suffer unjust snubs, ridicule, and recriminations–––she was Jewish.

By the time the Unsung Heroine had reached fifteen, she was in love with science. There was not a scientific topic that did not tease her analytical mind. Motivated, dedicated to her family, and with the stamina to be persistent, she was indeed unusual.

She attended Newnham, one of the two female colleges at Cambridge University, an honor that made her family extremely proud and brought her recognition as the top student upon entry with the best evaluation in Chemistry.

In 1941, The Dark Lady, the Unsung Heroine received her Bachelor’s Degree from Cambridge and also a scholarship to work on a research project concerning photochemistry.  She worked under R. G. Norris but the Second World War had begun, and our Unsung Heroine weighed her options about how she could best contribute to helping her nation during the war.  She decided to work on researching the microstructures and usage of coal for wartime purposes.  The identification of the microstructures and their reactions to each other was successful, and later led to her receiving her Ph.D. from Cambridge University and the acknowledgement and publication for five scientific papers.[5]

However, it was after this period that she began her most fruitful work, a work that would lead three men to receive the the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1962 for a discovery of the structures of Deoxyribonucleic Acid, known by its acronym of DNA.

The Dark Lady had spent time in France where she had experienced international renown among her colleagues, and she had returned home to England on a three-year research grant to work in the lab from John T. Randall’s Bio Physics Unit at King’s College in London. He asked her to work on his DNA research project. With her experience in x-ray diffraction, where she was considered an expert before her time, she discovered there were two forms of Deoxyribonucleic Acid, a wet and a dry form that displayed totally different pictures.  The Dark lady conducted various tests, and in 1953 she had photo picture proof that both structures were helices.[6]

Unfortunately, Maurice Wilkins sent her work to scientists, Francis Crick and James D. Watson without her knowledge.  Because he had not been assigned to work with her on the project, a rivalry began that brought our Unsung Heroine much pain. Wilkins made her life miserable during her time at King’s College. Based on her research and her pictures, Crick and Watson were able to break the mystery of the DNA structure.  However, they did not mention they had based their work on the photo pictures from The Dark Lady, our Unsung Heroine.

  • What would have been your reaction to the theft of your intellectual property?
  • How would you have reacted to failed acknowledgement of your critical research that may have rewarded you with the Nobel Prize?

The year 1954, damage relationships were irreparable, and The Dark Lady resettled herself and transferred her fellowship to J.D. Bernal’s Crystallography Laboratory at Birkbeck College.   She refused to look backward; instead she looked ahead and began working with the structures of plant viruses, which drew her international attention.  During this time, she made two trips to the North American Continent.

Can’t you see her people?

 The Dark Lady,

The Unsung Heroine of Science,

Giving her best, putting her best foot forward, no matter the circumstances and succeeding, even though she had been intellectually robbed.

The year was 1958,

The date April 16,

And one of the most prolific women of the twentieth century,

The Dark Lady,

The Unsung Heroine,

 Dr. Rosalind Elsie Franklin,

Was about to take her wings and cross over into eternity.

In 1956, this thirty-five year old woman had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Even though, she had undergone two surgeries and other treatments that brought about remission, the cancer continued to reappear. Nevertheless, The Dark Lady, The Unsung Heroine of DNA continued to gather funds for her team, until she could no longer work.  She knew time was slipping away quickly, but she wanted to leave her team well-funded.

On that particular day, in 1958, the 16th of April, it was windy in London.  The winds were strong throughout the United Kingdom.  The weather forecast predicted that the latter part of the month of April would bring extreme warm temperatures.[7] However, The Dark Lady, The Unsung Heroine of DNA was ready to rest and her eyes looked towards going home.

Can’t you see her people? 

Dr. Rosalind Elsie Franklin, The Dark Lady,

The Unsung Heroine of the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine,

The woman in the background who laid the groundwork for the Double Helix,

As she lay there reminiscing over her life, taking an account of the path she had deliberately chosen to walk.

I can see her in my mind, looking back at thirty-seven years of a life well spent in public service, and in helping others by fulfilling her purpose in life. I see her smiling  as she examined her accomplishments:

  • Worked successfully on a research project in Photochemistry and achieved Bachelor’s Degree.
  • Identified the microstructures in coal and their usage for the war industry in the Second World War. Doctor’s degree followed with the publication of five scientific papers.
  • Discovered the wet and dry helical structures of Deoxyribonucleic Acid, which led to the discovery of the Double Helix.
  • Instrumental in the research of plant viruses and the tobacco mosaic virus
  • Published 19 articles on coals and carbon, five articles on DNA and 21 on Viruses
  • Was the top expert researcher in X-Ray Diffraction
  • Established a global network of contacts for my team within the research world.
  • Left more than enough financial funding to assist them.

See her through the eyes of your heart, people,

Look at this woman,

The Dark Lady,

 The Unsung Heroine of Deoxyribonucleic Acid,

As she smiled once more before she let out a sigh, and Dr.  Rosalind Elsie Franklin, the lady who laid down the groundwork for the Double Helix put on her wings, and her spirit stood up and Walked On.

She walked on, people, she walked On!  Dr. Rosalind Elsie Franklin Walked On!

Walk On all you weary people who have been misunderstood, abused, or misused.

Stand tall and keep walking, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Hold your head up high,

Walk On, I say, Walk On.

01 Walk On

Photo on 3-22-13 at 7.59 AM #3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ciao,

Pat Garcia

*Some facts after Dr. Rosalind Elsie Franklin’s departure:

In 1962 Francis Crick, James D. Watson and Maurice Wilkins received the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for the Double Helix. None of the three men mentioned that his work was based on the pictures they had illegally taken from the work of Dr. Rosalind Elsie Franklin.

1968 Watson published his memoirs in which he portrayed Dr. Rosalind Elsie Franklin in a derogatory manner.

1975 Franklin’s friend, Anne Sayre wrote a rebuttal, which began to uncover the truth about the discovery of the Double Helix.  However, a posthumous Nobel Prize award for Dr. Rosalind Elsie Franklin regarding her critical role that led to this discovery has not yet been rectified.


[4] Maddox, Brenda,   Rosalind Franklin, The Dark Lady of DNA, HarperCollins e-books, 2002 in the United Kingdom by HarperCollins Publishers.

[7] http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/media/pdf/4/j/Apr1958.pdf

(8) http://www.kelliecoffey.com/index.asp, permission requested.

Learning From The Past- An Introduction To This Year’s (2013) Walk On Series

Hello Everyone,

I would like to thank you for your loyal support of my Walk On Series during the year of 2012.  It is an exhilarating feeling and an emotional high for me when I research the ladies I have chosen to learn about and pass on to you my reader.

This is the first article for this year, and it was an intentional delay.  The time needed to choose whose life I would become involved in demands that I look at the women carefully.  They become a part of me, and therefore, the Walk On Series always starts in March and ends in November.

Even though dead, these women live on, and the legacies they left behind astonish me every time I start digging.  I must admit that I learn enormously from them.

Their strength,

To move on,

To continue to struggles,

To turn the other cheek,

To reach out and help others,

To forgive and forget,

Are just some of the lessons that have affected my own life.

What is even more shocking for me was their determination to make a difference, to change themselves, and thereby change the world they lived in.

I sincerely hope these women of the past that I present this year will be an encouragement to you, and that each of you, whether male or female will continue to

Walk On!

Photo on 3-22-13 at 7.59 AM #3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ciao,

Pat Garcia

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