There are a few reasons why I am awake for nearly 24 hours...
One. My rescued street-cat, Mauser, had issues with grooming or letting me brush him so he had to go in for a "sedate and shave" this morning. He's fine and we will be bringing him home shortly.
Two. I have certain friends and family members who are unfortunately brainwashed into thinking and repeating the GOP agenda talking points - and any time you try to introduce them to reason, they have a freaking shit fit. I didn't feel comfortable sharing my viewpoints in a place where they knew it was me.
Three. What occurred last night in Oakland, CA, to the peaceful protesters representing Occupy Oakland was shameful to say the least, and unconstitutional to say the most. I guess we were all waiting for something like this to happen, and now we shall see what the fallout will be. At the very least, those who were able to leave without being (illegally) arrested were definitely more "radicalized" than when they first came.
There are a bunch of Bagger and GOP and Red Scare crapheads following me on twitter, and every time I bring up the word SOCIAL, they all panick and accuse me of being in cahoots with either Stalin, Lenin, or Marx. Sorry folks, but you got me, a Free Thinker, mixed up with a whole bunch of people I never claimed to follow.
The most popular definitions to come up on Google regarding Free Thinkers concern religion. It rather irks me to see that, because Free Thinking, for me, is NOT a "religion" per se. Yes, Free Thinking motivated me to become an active religious Seeker, until I found my spiritual home in my heritage and in Paganism. It didn't, however, end with religion; it colors how I approach all things in life.
I do not merely accept what I've been told. Even if it sounds good, I still invest some research into it.
Even when I was still working (I am medically retired, now) I did not let the news media or other sources of information blindly guide me. I researched, I listened to or read as many information outlets as I possibly could. With the advent of the Internet, the entire world of sources opened up to me.
I was taught, from birth onward, to think for myself, to never be afraid to question, to press for information, to research until I was at peace. My mother was a Free Thinker. Her father was a Free Thinker. The roots run deep in the matrilineal side of my family.
Naturally, my refusal to simply "go with the flow" earned me detractors, and in some cases, enemies. I caused friction. I drew attention. I caused others to wonder if they were in the right to follow the flow or if there was something inherently flawed in their thinking. I tend to have reactions of that sort to this very day. It is as though I am a natural mirror; my very approach to life is sometimes enough to disturb people, though I may not even be aware of it.
I have what some have referred to as a decidedly "cat like" personality, and no doubt that's why I get along with the creatures so well. A cat won't necessarily do what it's told, unless you threaten its idea of security in some fashion (including restraint, yelling, stomping feet, etc.) In other words, you must motivate the cat to change its pattern of behavior.
The same goes for Free Thinkers in my opinion. The clearer your message, the better researched it is, the more source material you can provide - all those things motivate a Free Thinker to consider your opinion when weighing a matter.
A Free Thinker will not believe something simply because you say it is so, no matter how much authority, real or imagined, you wield in its telling.
This country used to celebrate Free Thinkers. So many of our inventions, more than a few lifesaving, were developed by Free Thinkers - people who refused to take "no" or "impossible" for an answer. Our greatest minds in other roles within culture and society were Free Thinkers.
Free Thinkers were a good thing; that is, until Korporate Amerika saw them as a threat and began indoctrinating people to be afraid of them and their concepts.
Free Thinkers used to inhabit major news outlets and risked things that were important - sometimes their very lives - to bring the public the truth. Now the major news outlets are all firmly consolidated undr Korporate Amerika and it's very hard to find any truth that doesn't support the Korporate Agenda.
Welcome to the Hologram, folks, where your culture is spoon-fed to you, one consumer good at a time.