Floods, Home, and Motherhood

Charleston, SC is where my home is currently located. The recent situation of flood disaster across South Carolina has an interesting personal perspective from me as I continue to watch South Carolinians recover in the aftermath and the presence of true miracles. Values and reasons that sustain what we all hold dear are not entirely standard commonalities across any type of people for their similarities that may or may not actually exist.

South Carolina has been in too much pain. The confederate flag was removed from the state grounds and the history of the people of this state was asked denial. I have lived in the South U.S. variously enough of my life to understand a better world in the present day out of all of the Southern people that have grown and matured and created better civilization than the historic pasts. Validation of pain in the South is regression from what has emerged better that shows a stubbornness to arrive correctly in the present time. Now South Carolina has had a flood crisis and more rebuilding and resources are demanded on top of economic and other pains.

Most of us were born from a human being that gave birth that we call “mother”. I am a daughter and I do still have a mother. I chose for many real reasons in my life not to bear children. This does not invalidate the concept and realization of motherhood that still remains valid, even when I know I do not wish to live my life for, about, or because of children. We do not all become exactly like the mother we were born from and history bears children that are not history’s mothers and fathers.

Precious to me are a few honest things in my life: home, my cats (my childeren), men and women that care about one another and keep well in contributions they give and values they maintain for themselves in better lives, skills and talents and resources not wasted and disposed of, but most of all how human beings take responsibility for their own decisions and uses when freedoms are still alive and the viability of all compatible existing versions of love that are defined in human kind. South Carolina might redefine in some ways, but if you ever knew this state and believed in anything remember not to hate with destruction that does not leave value for the changes achieved as I, for one, would like a future that keeps well.

I gave thanks my ways for my home that still remains in South Carolina today.

Mothers and Fathers die and pass away. As an adult, I have realized we are not always there for everything that happens in our own we have had and we did not always know in all ways everything that was from our heritage. When we do not deny our own lives as we are now, or our histories from our own understandings, life sustains alive on the Earth and a future.

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Labor Force “At-Will”

South Carolina is an “Employment At-Will” state. This means: “that the employer may terminate the employment or the employee may leave the employment at any time for any reason (or for no reason)” in the absence of an employment contract or specific statutory protection. Labor unions largely fulfill the function of representing members in disputes over labor contracts. With the strike by oil industry workers prominent in the news, it seems that these terms and uses bear some consideration for the workforce in this state. I am a contractor and employed by contract. When my contracts are fulfilled there is usually room for an employer to pick up further work on “at-will” terms. This results in working past a contract or over the limitations specified in a contract for both my employer’s benefit and my own benefit. A “breakdown” in the contract employment relationship is my personal responsibility to repair, redeem, or negotiate. I like this arrangement. In my line of work, it keeps me independent and paid. In a corporation, where certain workers may or may not form a union, tension forms from the “at-will” status that is in force in South Carolina. I do not see “at-will” and “contract” as mutually exclusive. Like an independent contract, union contracts can be created to benefit employees and work well for employers if “at-will” rights are retained and not excluded by contract terms. This gives union members contract points to collectively bargain and everyone involved the rights of “at-will” agreements that are not contrary to contract terms. While it seems that this would erode the “collective” idea of bargaining, it actually strengthens it. When contracts are terminated, employment is terminated and this comes from both union and management vantage points. Neither unions nor management want to lose jobs under a collective contract. Retaining the capability of contract negotiation with “at-will” freedoms designates that the employer/employee relationship is not bound by “contract only” specifications. As an independent contractor my employment is bound by contract, but often some work in the job is “at-will”. I do not usually have an obligation to my employer for overtime, extra work, or certain hours on the clock. On the other hand, some of the best jobs I have worked under contract allow for an “at-will” give and take between my employer and me to include some of those “extras at-will”. These “extra” terms do not have to be built into a re-negotiated contract. I am not implying that these same terms apply to non-contractual agreements for unions to uphold. What I am stating is that contracts can leave room for “at-will” answers to still exist. Perhaps I see an “at-will” state’s union workers as just a large group of independent contractors- the union workers are just all on the same contract. In a time where jobs are precious, the employer/employee relationship is important and keeping both contract work and “at-will” employment should benefit the workforce through keeping job elimination at a minimum while still protecting employees.