Happy Tuesday you beautiful humans!
And I suppose I should also go ahead and wish you a Happy Independence Day as we’ll be celebrating that before I talk to you next.
I love the Fourth of July. I know I hate our government and am constantly pointing out the country’s flaws, but it comes from a very deep place of patriotism and a love of our founding ideals.
My mom says as a baby I would always cry, like absolutely lose it, when the “Star Spangled Banner” played in public. Even then, it just moved me.
As an adult, I like to spend my holiday watching Hamilton and crying over these lyrics in its place:
We negotiate the terms of surrender
I see George Washington smile
We escort their men out of Yorktown
They stagger home single file
Tens of thousands of people flood the streets
There are screams and church bells ringing
And as our fallen foes retreat
I hear the drinking song they’re singing
The world turned upside down
We have many problems. But never forget that our ideals turned the world upside down. We have failed to measure up to them over and over again, but the fact that we assert the notions of individualism, limited government, and liberty for all is a radical stance that changed the trajectory of history and shone a light for the rest of the world. I love those ideals so desperately, and I’ll never stop fighting for their advancement.
Today, those of us who stand on these principles are as radical as our Founders before us.
As I wrote in a piece last year: “The founding fathers were radicals, outsiders, troublemakers. They did not fit into society’s boxes, they refused to resign their wills and minds to what was popular. They risked their fortunes, their good names, their very lives to stand for what they knew to be right — and they happened to have won, eventually. So too should the modern defenders of liberty expect to be ostracized, maligned, and scorned. Freedom isn’t popular, and if you defend it too well, you won’t be either. But you just might win, eventually.”
I also wrote this little 4th of July poem last year I’ll include as well, it’s called “I Still Love America.”
And now I’m fired up and feeling like writing another piece to commemorate the holiday, so thanks for the inspiration. 🙂
Ok, I’ll quit waxing poetic now. On to what you’re here for!
Save the Date!
Next Tuesday, July 6th I will begin a monthly series on Clubhouse for members/subscribers/supporters only! The room will be open to the public, but only subscribers will be invited to the floor and able to join the conversation or ask questions.
The meeting will start at 8 pm ET.
This is your chance to ask me anything! No subject is out of bounds.
All you need to do is download the app, and with this link you can then RSVP to the event, join my club, and enter the room.
Hope to see you there!
NEWS YOU NEED
Episode 9 of BASED is now live!
This month I’m digging into an issue I’m an expert on: the death penalty.
I realized that despite giving literally thousands of interviews on the topic, and writing dozens of articles, I’d never recorded one comprehensive deep dive on the subject. I decided BASED was a good space for that and a great opportunity to show how the same problems with the death penalty show up throughout the government’s policies and practices.
I first covered the #FreeBritney movement and the need for conservatorship reform back in February. You can read the initial piece I wrote here.
Missing from the discussion has been Britney’s own voice, but that changed last week when the singer finally spoke out on her own behalf. You can hear her trauma-filled testimony here (brace yourselves).
I circled back to the topic for FEE last week as well, read that here.
I’ve long been of the opinion that student athletes should be paid. The “amateurism” scheme is anti-capitalist and unethical. I’m pretty sure you are not an amateur when you’re bringing in millions of dollars.
A recent SCOTUS decision didn’t quite get around to dealing with that issue, but it did gain some ground for the free market and opened the door for future action. Read my piece here.
Sooo, Russell Brand quoted one of my articles at length in his podcast last week. Super cool, and further proof that libertarians and progressives can come together on important issues.
- Supreme Court sides with high school cheerleader who cursed online in major First Amendment victory.
- Fourth Amendment advocates win big in Lange v. California. (SCOTUS is batting pretty high lately….I hope I got that baseball metaphor right)
- Across Western countries, the birth rate is declining. Leftists would have you believe it’s because we don’t offer women enough welfare. But decline is sharpest among wealthy and educated people. Maybe, just maybe, a lot of women don’t want to have kids. And maybe others are looking at the societal bargain they get in most cultures (which would be doing most of the work) and saying “pass.” This old(er) episode of “The Daily” from the New York Times gives a good insight into the latter scenario in Japan. It’s enlightening, and a good reminder that we don’t need government to “fix” what often amounts to personal choices by individuals (like when some industries have fewer women working in them).
- Connecticut becomes first state to make calls free for inmates and their families and if you don’t know why that’s a big deal, read this.
- Are ADHD rates rising because we send children to school at younger ages?
- The Supreme Court Just Struck a Big Blow for Private Property—Against Union Invasion (I just love watching those thugs lose).
- I’m SO tired of hearing about critical race theory. I feel pretty sure most people ranting about it could not define it, and on the other side, I feel most people pushing it are overt Marxists. The real problem here, though, is government setting our curriculum for school children in the first place, and that root issue can only be solved by school choice. My wonderful colleague, Kerry McDonald, explains here.
- I love Sassy Massie:
I have been on a huge Malcolm Gladwell kick lately. I know I suggested a few of his titles a couple of weeks ago, but I’m rounding out his bibliography right now with “Talking to Strangers” and he’s worth another mention.
If you like psychology, research, and data, you’re simply going to love this author. In this book, he examines the barriers we face in reading and understanding others, and he focuses a good deal of time on the impact of that on the criminal justice system.
Moving has been hard on my health. Finding new workout routines is time-consuming, a bit daunting, and the last thing you want to do when you’re busy.
But, as someone who relies on exercise to keep my mental health in check, I’ve made it a priority even in the midst of absolute chaos.
I tried downloading Classpass, which is a subscription app service that allows you to drop in on multiple workout classes and studios. But it seems most studios in the area are not on it, or that many went out of business due to COVID, because I found it lacking in options.
But after a lot of trial and error, I finally found a great yoga studio, thank God! And I’ve been using my greenway for hiking, running, and walking as well. So the last thing on my list was tennis.
Since tennis is a workout that requires a partner I was a bit nervous. I don’t know many people here yet and I’m also still at a pretty intermediate level. It’s intimidating to find new tennis partners, especially when you might not be on the same skill level as them. In fact, this issue was a barrier for me for years. I always wanted to play tennis but never knew how to get started.
But thankfully, I found a solution! There’s a private-public tennis court nearby and I noticed it seemed groups of people were getting lessons when I walked by sometimes. So I went inside to enquire about it and found that they actually offer clinics.
You simply register for the level you are, and they place you in groups of four with an instructor. It’s fairly cheap, about $30 for the lesson. I’m signed up this week and thinking, if I like it, I’ll probably try to go weekly.
So, if you’ve always wanted to try tennis, or if you’re like me and lacking a partner, checkout your local courts and see if they offer something similar. This is a great way to meet new people, improve your skills, get active, and skip the awkwardness of trying to find an equally-matched tennis partner in the future! Plus, you’ll get to know people at your level, so you may be able to find more permanent partners in the group too.
It’s been one of the busiest months of my life. I love keeping a full plate, but even I’ve been sort of at my breaking point lately as I try to get my house livable, transition into a new city, learn a new role, launch a new show, and keep all the exciting developments with BASED, my website, and social media from falling through the cracks.
So, my full plate could easily result in an empty dinner plate for lack of time, or resorting to quick, frozen meals and fast food – not great for my weight or my mental health. Thankfully, the past year of healthy eating has prepared me and I’ve managed to find ways to still eat well in a time crunch.
This carnitas dish took me 15 minutes and fed me for three meals.
Trader Joe’s sells pre cooked carnitas in their deli section. You simply chop up the block of meat and heat over some oil in a skillet (or you can throw them in an Instapot for a softer outcome – I like mine kind of crunchy). Next, I simply shredded some spinach and topped it with olive oil, salt, and pepper ( you’ll be surprised how good those simple three ingredients can make greens taste). I then topped the greens with the carnitas and dribbled some Alabama White Sauce on top.
Alabama White Sauce is the best BBQ sauce, don’t even try to fight me on this. And it’s also low carb! I like Jim & Nick’s version, which is a southern restaurant that sells their sauces at Publix. This whole meal was like 8 carbs, very filling, tasty, and again, super fast and easy.
If that sounds too plain, you could also add some cauliflower rice, cold slaw, roasted red peppers, jalapenos, red cabbage to the mix.
BEHIND THE SCENES
The BASED studio is now doubling as my dining room. As you know, this has been a work in progress.
We made it work this week, in large part thanks to Luis’ editing talent, but I think it’ll continue to get better. I have some more lighting on its way, and I plan to add some wall art that will liven up the background.
I do really love the green now that the painting is all finished.
Here’s the final view. I’m still waiting for my amazing feathered light fixture to arrive. It, like most things, is backordered.
I also am planning on adding some blinds to the door. I hate to block my view, but I need to be better able to control the lighting when filming.
I also still need to replace my dining room table since this one arrived damaged. They refunded me, but I can’t seem to find anything I like nearly as much. I remember as a kid it would drive me nuts when my parents would drive a car with a dent in it or not throw away something that was damaged. But now, I guess that’s me for the time-being. I feel so….Alabamian. 🙂
The patio is also coming along nicely. One day I’d like to install outdoor tile, but for the immediate future I just want to add two more chairs, a firepit, and then a fence to hide the HVAC unit and trashcan. Oh, and lots more plants. I’m trying to create the Secret Garden back here.
My very sweet neighbors dropped this cake by on Sunday. And it’s even gluten free! Isn’t that the sweetest?
I still don’t like the concept of an HOA, but the board president and vice-president are two of the loveliest ladies I’ve ever met.