Imagineer - Stef Christensen

Issues

Health
Military
Social Justice

As a nurse and clinical researcher I have spent 35 years caring for the sick and wounded. It is not pretty. Illness stinks, disability is burdensome, and all are costly. We die older all the time. If you knew you were only going to be able to buy a car every 25 years would you care for it differently than you do now? Well, body beautiful can be yours for perhaps as long as 95 years.

 

And that means that how and what you do with it in the interim may be totally in your own hands. Sometimes you are dealt a different hand and the quality of life is something you have no control over.

More than thirty years ago, while younger and in the military, I had a delayed epiphany that I was a lesbian. During a top secret clearance interview I disclosed my sexual orientation which resulted in my discharged after 25 years of service.  I filed suit against the government, won and was ultimately reinstated.  Now I was one of three “out” homosexuals serving in the military the others being Keith Meinhold and Zoe Dunning.

 

Simultaneously there were thousands of homosexuals serving in silence defending the country.   

 

This section is dedicated to those who have served in the military, those serving now and to those wanting to join and make the military a career.

Social justice is based on the concepts of human rights and equality, and can be defined as "the way in which human rights are manifested in the everyday lives of people at every level of society".

Why marry? One reason is the tax benefit. For example, married people get health coverage for spouses that is not added salary to be taxed. Social security benefits are available for survivors; death benefits and income are there for married survivors.

 

Children also are a trigger for people choosing to marry. Some still feel the stigma of a "bastard" child. However, society is much more forgiving these days about the transgressions of the parents. There have been changes in schools, health systems, and financial systems so that marital status is less controlling than in previous generations.

 

However, for stability, for commitment, for security, for assurance of parental influence, getting married remains the standard precursor to a "family with children."