Reality Leigh Winner: It’s Been 2 Years

When a foreign government is actively attacking our democracy, many would assume it’s safe to say that most Americans would want to know about it and would want it stopped. So I’m sure I’m not the first to tell you, but that’s where we find ourselves now; in the midst of having been attacked and attack efforts still underway on our democracy through disinformation & divisive campaigns. And it’s also said that our future elections will continue to be attacked if our politicians don’t do anything about it.

This information has been blasted at us in all different directions and we know that these attacks have been happening, but is that an excuse to keep letting them happen? For it may not only be Russia launching social media campaigns, working to release candidates’ and political organizations’ information, and using spear-phishing attempts the next time. Senator Sasse-R mentioned that China may also attempt an attack, putting their high tech resources and manpower to work against our voting infrastructure in 2020.

We know what’s going on and we want the attacks on our democracy to end, but the people that are supposed to be representing us and protecting our rights, the same people we elected and pay salaries to so they will take action for us, are doing none of that. In fact, too many feel as though our elected officials are actively suppressing pertinent information from the public, or allowing others to suppress it as they turn a blind eye. They’re deliberately speaking about this spear-phishing information as though they had proof of this attack on our democracy all along. But they didn’t.

The reason we know all this, why we have proof of election interference, is because of the sacrifice one brave whistleblower made when she decided to tell the truth. US Air Force veteran, Reality Leigh Winner, had taken an oath to serve and protect her country. For some time we had known that Russia interfered in our 2016 presidential election, but no one had proof.

Donald Trump, the elected official in our country’s highest office, kept repeating that it was all a big hoax and had even lifted sanctions that were lobbied against Russians for the interference. Trump went even further stating that he believed Vladimir Putin when asked of the interference, of course, Putin denying it. In May of 2017, Reality Winner sent proof of Russian spear-phishing attempts in the election to The Intercept online media organization. The information was out there, and now so was the proof. But horribly, Winner was arrested mere days later, charged with a violation under the Espionage Act.

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Something’s In The Water (Flash Fiction)

It was mid-July and Sophie was standing in front of the window fan in her third-floor walk up. It didn’t work anymore, but it provided a barrier to get fresh air since she only had storm windows and no screens. The city was alive in a way she had never remembered it. When she was growing up, Albany was a big city, but it wasn’t New York. Now it was four times the size of the five boroughs.

When hell broke loose everyone headed north and there was no unoccupied land in upstate NY.  As farmland was neglected, people started settling into RV & tent cities that reached out to the horizon. There wasn’t one halfway liveable apartment left vacant and all of the houses took on new roles as modern day longhouses when extended families that found each other and stayed together.

Sophie remembered trying frantically to get ahold of her parents and her sister to no avail. She could still hear the beeps & the robotic operator’s voice, “The person you are trying to reach is not available.” The phone lines cut off right after the fifth time she had tried. The only thing Sophie could think of was to make sure she was stocked up on necessities and stay put.  If they were alive, her family would find her in the same apartment she had been living in for 5 years. That was 2 years ago.

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A Flawed Approach to Justice

Every band of people, every society, every nation has some sort of rules or laws that their citizens are bound by. These rules and laws are created using human logic, which has proven to err. Further, all human logic is not the same, it can vary from human to human, equal only in that it is human logic and not another species’. We also have morals, a person’s inner conscious of right and wrong. Morals are learned, but how they’re interpreted by a person also rests upon the type of personality that human is born with. People are not born intrinsically good or bad, yet in learning how to eat, talk, walk, act in public, and how to live in general, our personalities allow us to be shaped by our environments, good and bad.
The United States’ laws are impacted by our human logic and have molded the way our justice system works, which in turn helps form the way our society acts. Over the past couple centuries, we have needed to add and enforce more laws as new technologies emerge, new crimes have been committed and as some of our citizens have taken corruption to a whole new level.
After the Constitution and Bill of Rights were written, potential new laws were next. The rights of citizens and governments were covered and now it was time to handle some bureaucratic issues. The first bill to be passed into law was an act managing the time and manner of oaths being taken when a person is sworn into Senate or Congress.

This decision was based on a followed logic of a patriarchal society, basically a group of white men calling the shots. This was white male logic. Keep in mind this is not me “taking a shot at the patriarchy.” It’s important to understand because one group of people constructed the laws of the land allowing for their interpretations of laws only, as they think of themselves. Everyone else had to fight for representation.

Pressing forward through the decades, human rights became increasingly more important to address, technologies were constantly being upgraded, and we now had lawyers (mostly white men, again) studying these laws with the intent of using them to their advantage to attain their desired verdict. The jobs of lawyers started taking on more tasks akin to searching for loopholes, than of helping to protect our civil rights and liberties. The courtroom seems to have taken on a sporting ideal with someone always winning a case while the other side loses.

But America is a democracy, we are told we have a voice. So we try to elect officials that will best represent us and the way we feel our society should be governed. The officials we elect then become our new lawmakers, amending and passing laws, in a so-called effort to end corruption and stop criminals from skirting the law. However, the real outcome is just more laws piled up on top of each other in the hopes of covering everything. We are governed by the “web of laws,” and many of us still haven’t realized this isn’t working.

The American people should have been pissed when we heard Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez explain how it’s completely legal for someone to be corrupt and still hold power in the government, that there are no laws to stop this. But while the video of her explaining that went viral, it was forgotten about by the next week and nothing has been done about it.

Let me repeat that. It is legal to be corrupt and still hold power in the US government, yet nothing has been done. Do people just not care?

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Santa’s Spirit

Introduction:

I began writing this book for my sons, and for every other girl and boy that was, or will struggle with their belief in Santa Claus.  There has always been a line drawn between those that believe in Santa and those that don’t believe. Many children grow up believing in Santa only to have their beliefs come crashing down around them.  Whether it’s because a classmate or older sibling tells them that Santa’s not real, or because they don’t get what they wrote on their Christmas list, every child stops believing at some point, or at the very least questions their belief.  And while I may be just some adult writing a book, I need you to know something about me; I’m a believer. “Why?” you might ask. Well, I’ll tell you why in this book. I know some stuff and I want you to know it too. I’m tired of there being a yes or no answer when a child is asked if they believe.  Sometimes things just aren’t that simple, so I decided to share what I know.

 

Now, when I started writing I thought I was just going to clear up the whole believing or not question, but I’ve realized that I can’t stop there.  I discovered that no one knows Santa’s full story anymore, and that’s such a shame.  So, while this book may leave you with some answers, it’ll also leave you with more questions, but please don’t fret.  Your questions will be answered, I just can’t fit everything into one book and Santa’s story is kind of broken up by age appropriateness.  For example, if you had read this book when you were 5 years old, you would have been completely lost. But now that you’ve grown up and are hearing from friends or siblings that, “Santa doesn’t exist,” you’re old enough for this part of the story.  And please keep in mind that just because someone doesn’t exist now doesn’t mean he never did…

 

So now is the time where you can take a brief pause and get ready for a long story.  Grab your hot cocoa and popcorn, a nice, comfy blanket and get comfortable. Go on, I’ll wait…

 

Okay, you’re back.  Here we go!

 

***********************************

 

A silence filled the air and he was afraid of being seen.  The freshly fallen snow acted as an insulator and you could hear for what seemed like miles away.  But he had done this many times before, seventy to be exact, so he knew he would be okay. Santa was out delivering toys to good girls and boys.  He filled their stockings and had a quick snack, always leaving a thank you note and some crumbs. It was another long Christmas night, but no matter how tired he was, Santa pushed on.  He knew there were children fast asleep dreaming of what he had left them under the tree.

 

When he got home he took off his boots and shook the snow off his suit’s coat.  Mrs. Claus already had the fire roaring and his hot cocoa steaming on the stand next to his chair.  She knew he would be freezing coming back from this one. All nestled in, it was around 7 o’clock that morning when Santa got the first of many visions as all the world’s children began to wake up and see what awaited them.20181216_090505

 

You see, Santa was magic.  How else could you explain wiggling his nose to shoot up the chimney or through your vent?  And when he got home every Christmas morning he had visions of children shredding wrapping paper and wearing bows on their heads.  It always gave him a warm feeling in his belly, seeing all those smiling faces, which is where his “Ho Ho Ho,” originally came from.

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A Case of Modern Day Misogynistic Oppression in MSM and the DOJ

As a strong advocate of gender equality and women’s rights, I have taken a particular interest in Reality Winner’s plight. I am one of many supporters of Reality and not only have I spoken to other advocates, but I’ve also done some independent research on different aspects of her case in order to understand more. Not quite shocking in the current political times, but the more I learn, the more I am appalled.

I’ve written about Reality’s treatment, and why we should be paying attention. I’ve written about how mainstream media continues to ignore her case, even after reporting on her initial arrest. And I’ve written about how we need to be talking to our government officials and candidates running for office in the upcoming elections about closing the gaps in whistleblower protection laws, and about the use of the Espionage Act against whistleblowers. It would seem that with a case of this magnitude, more people would be paying attention. But due to lack of media coverage, with the exception of various shout outs from big names such as actresses Rosie O’Donnell & Rosanna Arquette , whistleblower attorney and Expose Facts founder Jesselyn Radack, and Thomas Drake, Reality and her family mainly gain supporters one tweet at a time, one Facebook post at a time, and one protest march at a time.

During pre-trial hearings in 2018, a billboard appeared in Georgia, advocating for Reality. Many of her supporters thought this could be a turning point in main stream coverage because Magistrate Epps and Judge Hall weren’t happy with the billboard. Supporters took this chance to spotlight Reality’s silencing as her defense team was even scolded by Epps about this billboard, someone else’s First Amendment Right to Free Speech, that her attorneys had nothing to do with. But still, there was little media coverage, and nothing main stream.

Don’t get me wrong, there have been a few pieces that mentioned “an ex-NSA contractor” and CNN did one piece after she accepted a forced plea deal & had already been transported to FMC Carswell in Fort Worth, but you would think the person that provided proof of Russian election interference in the US, a supposed world super power, would be national, if not global news. However, you would be wrong to assume thats what happened.

Now that I’ve written a few pieces on Reality, I’m starting to see a bigger picture. When I look at what I have written as a whole about her case there seems to be a common denominator that keeps popping up, and I can no longer ignore it. This pattern I’m seeing is what women are currently fighting back against. A pattern that has gone on for decades, nay, centuries, of men having the upper hand. A pattern of women’s oppression & inequality. Sexism hides everywhere, from the darkest corners to right under our noses. And Reality has been up against the full force of it.

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Risking Freedom By Telling The Truth

*Updated 2/21/2020*

As we get closer to November, many people are thinking about voting out the corrupt representatives who have plagued our government. Candidates and incumbents alike are pushing campaign ads and sending postcards; some are even knocking on doors. If the committed voter numbers in November are anything like the hype we’re hearing, this will be a voter turnout for the history books. And with the political environment being what it is, we can see why.

News that Russia had hacked into our election systems in 2016 rocked many Americans. The belief that we, the people, have a patriotic duty to vote and take our country back is strong. The feeling of needing to rid our government of the money-hungry representatives who are only in office to line their pockets is overwhelming among any group that talks politics these days. Of course, voting out corruption should be Priority One, but then shouldn’t Priority Two be finding candidates who fit what we want and need as Americans? Are we asking our candidates, who want our votes, everything that we should be asking them? Probably not.

There’s so much going on week to week, and even day to day, that it’s hard to keep up with all the political agendas arising, that we once thought were safe. Because of how busy we are, and how much things change day to day, just because an issue deserves our attention, doesn’t always mean it will receive it. And that is a big mistake.

If there’s one issue that deserves our attention and has been overlooked, it would have to be the one that is pertinent to identifying and alerting the proper authorities, including the general public, of illegal, immoral and corrupt activities within our government. We must vote out & keep out corruption.

This one issue, that has gone largely unspoken until recently is whistleblower protections. Fraud and corruption run through our government like a snake slithering through high grass. It can be hard for the decent high-level government officials to spot, because as corruption succeeds it’s concealed right under their noses. Lower-level officials and private citizens, by contrast, sometimes have an advantage of seeing it from the outside, or a bird’s-eye view.

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Why We Should All Look Closer at the Case of RussiaGate Whistle Blower, Reality Winner

😶Written By: Elizabeth Miner (@Lizseeds0311) March 15, 2018/Updated for Anonymous Worldwide May 27, 2018
Novice Freelance Blogger; LippyLibbyBlog.WordPress.com

In today’s hustle & bustle of our busy lives, many people don’t take the time, or don’t have the time, to really look into things that don’t directly affect them. Because of that, many people scan the newspaper in the morning, getting the gist of what’s going on, but not knowing the particulars of its contents, let alone in its entirety. If there were a list of articles, topics & cases most widely known for a name, yet most widely unknown in their specifics, the case of Reality Winner would probably be right up there in the top 10.

With the one year anniversary of her arrest coming up in June, and the attention of the actual information (that’s currently public knowledge) that she is accused of leaking with a single document, it’s quite surprising that her case still goes widely unknown.  Yes, Reality Winner has an unusual name, and one that many have focused on. But yet what’s not known is that she is a young US Air Force veteran, and ex NSA contractor. She is the whistleblower, or truth teller, that is charged under the Espionage Act for allegedly releasing a document to the online media outlet, The Intercept, showing that Russia was hacking into our US election support companies.

The last sentence of that paragraph alone would have had people up in arms, in the not so distant past. If an announcement was made that Russia was, and has been for years, meddling in our elections, and continues to do so, many people would have taken to the streets. But, with so much going on every damned day, it’s unknown whether we are becoming desensitized to the corruption in our government (on all sides,) or if people really just don’t care. Or maybe, even still, they have a hard time trying to filter through all the bullsh*t and end up buying into it.

This piece is meant to take a second and explain why Reality Winner has such devoted supporters. The thing is, there is a visible division in our country.  And unfortunately, that divide is causing people that normally would be supporters of Winner to cut themselves off from the truth about what is going on with her case.  From my personal experience, which is admittedly very little, most people that are Trump supporters aren’t going to want to support Winner because of the information in the document itself, and that she’s alleged to have helped expose the Russian hacking while Trump himself was on television saying he believed Putin when he said his country didn’t hack our election support companies. So then it boils down to still not believing that Russia was responsible, or the information isn’t critically thought about and is brushed off under the guise that any form of leaking is a treasonous act.

However, I implore Trump supporters to check into her case, though, because Winner’s supporters aren’t digging in their feet in based only on their political stance, whether they are resisting Donald Trump, or not.  And her supporters aren’t trying to claim her innocence either. (Although now that the mainstream media has reported Russia did hack our election and there are Russian indictments in the Mueller investigation, one wonders why the document Winner is accused of releasing is still considered classified.  Is it only to keep her silenced in jail?)  Her supporters are saying, however, that her treatment has been unfair, and unjust, throughout the past year.

Donald Trump himself said in a tweet, when speaking of Rob Porter’s departure over allegations that he abused his past wives, that every American should be seen as innocent until proven guilty, and that every American deserves their right to a fair trial and due process.  (And let’s not forget the right to a speedy trial!) Winner’s supporters agree. Yes, every American does deserve that.  Every US Air Force veteran and every NSA contractor, also deserves that.  So why isn’t Reality Winner receiving any of it?

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Reality L Winner Whistle Blower, USAF Veteran & Self Described Political Prisoner

 

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Are You There, MSM? It’s Me, A Reality Winner Supporter.

It seems as though we’ve gotten used to waking up every morning and seeing some crazy or off the cuff tweet sent out by the man that is supposed to be the leader of the free world, our country. Each day, there’s a quoted tweet, or five, plastered on the television screen while Joe Scarborogh, Joy Reid or Anderson Cooper talk about what an asinine thing it was for a President of these United States to publicly announce. But has anyone sat back and thought about why this is happening?

Donald Trump knows that his tweets are under a watchful eye. Not only by the millions of people on Twitter, but also by the press that has to have something new to report on every day. And Trump knows this. He knows that if he sends out a tweet saying that transgenders are no longer allowed in the military, that a screen shot of that tweet will be up on his television screen hours later. He knows that if he makes an announcement on raising tariffs and that a trade war is a good thing, his face will be on that same television screen.

Trump is a reality TV star first, and acts as such. He knows how to stay in the spotlight, cause drama, and irk people. No matter how much we want to call him out for being insane or not being mentally fit, he’s smart enough to know that he can control what the main stream media (MSM) will report. He even told a journalist, in a one on one interview at Mar-A-Lago, that the media needed him. That they want him to win reelection in 2020. And they’re taking the bait.

Robert Mueller is hot on the Russian investigation, and things are being reported to be spiraling out of control in the White House. Reports of Trump’s aide, and son-in-law, Jared Kushner’s security clearance being revoked, gave the week of Feb 26, 2018 a jump start in MSM. Hope Hicks’ resignation soon followed, with her telling special counsel that she has told “white lies” for Trump in the past. And then, a final report of Trump announcing higher tariffs on steel & aluminum, and potentially sending us into a trade war, made for some interesting news to be reported.

But how many people know who Reality Winner is? She happens to be pretty important in the Russia investigation. She’s the young Air Force veteran that tried to help warn American citizens of Russia’s hacking into our election support companies while Trump continued his praise of Putin saying they didn’t.

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#NY2GA4Reality

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On February 27, 2018, a Suppression Hearing was held in the decision making time period before Reality Winner’s actual trial in which she is being charged under the Espionage Act. This was an important hearing because Magistrate Brian Epps will decide whether or not Reality’s confession will be able to be submitted as evidence against her in court.

Magistrate Epps has since asked both the prosecution & defense to submit statements of their arguments and then he will make his decision. This, ultimately, will push back Reality’s trial that is scheduled for this month.

The reason this is so important is because of what happened the day Reality Winner was interrogated by two male FBI agents. This was set up as a sting operation from the beginning. The lead agent said he briefed his team about the case a half mile away from Reality’s apartment, in a school parking lot. Reality was not arrested by the FBI agents, she was arrested by the local police department.

Reality cooperated with the FBI agents, while they blocked the only exit in the tiny, unfinished bedroom in the back of her apartment during the questioning. While a group of nine armed, male FBI agents ransacked her apartment with their search warrant, she even asked if she could tend to her pets’ needs, instead of walking around freely in her own home. And when Reality asked the two agents interrogating her if she was being arrested, knowing there was also a search warrant for her person, but seeing no female agent during the entire exchange, her question went unanswered.

Instead, she was told that she would benefit from cooperating, which she thought she was doing. And, that they would feel much better knowing they didn’t have a serious issue if she was just frustrated with her job. The same tactics that you see on television when a suspect is being interviewed & arrested; the coerciveness, the pressuring, the “we know you did it so you better tell us now.”

There were seven cars outside of Reality’s small Augusta home, all blocking in her vehicle. She had handed over her keys and her cell phone, and even showed the armed agents how to gain access into her phone. None of this made Reality feel as though this was a voluntary interview. She felt that she was being arrested, which she ended up foreshadowing correctly.

This wasn’t Winner’s first pre-trial hearing either. She has been denied pretrial bond multiple times over the course of the last 8 months. And while Winner has gained a lot of support online, her mother & step father, Billie Winners-Davis & Gary Davis, have been the only supporters of Winner to show up at those hearings.

This time was different though. Because of all the support that Winner has gained online, her parents wouldn’t be the only ones in the courtroom this time. Supporters from Florida, Pennsylvania, and New York, came to show Winner and her parents that they are not alone.

My husband, Ryan, & I were two of those supporters. Back in January, there was a call to action online for Reality Winner supporters and I worked with other supporters to try to fill the courtroom. Donations came in to help get supporters to the hearing, and Ryan & I offered to carpool anyone needing a ride. We even picked up a fellow supporter in Philadelphia on our way down to Augusta, GA from upstate NY.

Ryan & I started our trip on Monday, February 26, 2018. We packed our bags & I made a hash tag: #NY2GA4Reality. I wrote the hash tag on my car windows and set the GPS for our 15 hour drive. I made my Twitter update so people could follow our drive down using the hash tag and we were off. We were going to be there for Reality and her parents. We wanted them to know there were people out there like us.

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Reality Is My Winner

Reality Winner. An unusual name for a military veteran, but seems quite fitting somehow. Some people have heard of her, but many have not. Reality is the fit blonde, in her twenties, that allegedly released a document to the online media outlet, The Intercept, back in May 2017.

Out of the all people who know her name, there lies a division. If you believe yourself to be an ethical person, and someone with morals, yet you also believe that she broke the law so she’s where she needs to be, that Reality is guilty before her trial, or think her being charged under the Espionage Act is appropriate, then I’ll stop you right here. I have a separate message for you:

This post isn’t for you. If you choose to continue to read, please know that I will not approve any negative comments. I’m all for answering questions to the best of my ability, or at least directing you to someone who may know. And I’m always willing to engage in civil conversation with those that hold opposing views, but I do not tolerate incivility. It’s your choice whether you want to be civil. This is a personal narrative on Reality. With that said, whether you choose to continue to read or not, & whether you choose to be civil or not, is all on you. We’re all adults here, so let’s act it.

For the rest of us, I think it’s normal to feel like we want to make a difference at some point in our lives. Whether we decide to act on that desire is a decision based on three things:

  1. How much we relate to want we think needs changing.
  2. How emotionally connected we are to that relationship.
  3. Opportunity.

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