The phone call no mother wants to get is the one Sally Yabra received. Her world as she knew it forever changed when her handsome 19 yr. old son Jonathan Baksh died in a quarry related accidental drowning last summer.

Below you will find his story told in her words via Change.org where there’s a petition awaiting your signature to make a difference. I promised to share his story…and it’s an honor to do so.

Abandoned Quarries claimed the lives of over forty people in the United States last year alone, including my 19-year-old son Jonathan Baksh. He was an excellent swimmer, but was unaware of the dangers abandoned quarries pose, when he traveled out of state to go swimming with his friends. He grew up in an area where there are no quarries, therefore quarry safety education programs were not taught at our schools, and quarry danger was not common knowledge in our community.

Quarries and mines are a fundamental part of the economy and are located in every state in the U.S. Once they are no longer financially viable, they are often abandoned and naturally become filled with underground water. On a hot summer day, they may look like the perfect place for a swim, but they are dangerous and deadly.

There are over 500,000 abandoned mines and quarries in the U.S. and the Dangers associated with these quarries are:

– More dangerous than other bodies of water

– Often have beautiful and inviting waters

– Their increase in popularity is spread via social media without knowledge of the dangers

– Deceptively deep waters at extremely cold temperatures, which can cause sudden cramps when swimming

– Slippery slopes and unstable rock ledges

– Hidden underwater dangers such as sharp objects, old machinery, junk cars, debris, etc.

– Strong hidden under currents

– NO lifeguards on duty

– Rescue services are remote, and access is limited

The U.S. Department of Labor, Mine Safety and Health Administration (msha.gov) created a program Stay Out Stay Alive which is intended to educate the public about the dangers of abandoned mines. Unfortunately, the program is underfunded and too many lives are lost each year because young people do not learn of the dangers which abandoned mines and quarries pose.

The Stay Out Stay Alive campaign is in place in the United Kingdom and it has been implemented to greater effect, bringing this lifesaving information to many more people, schools and communities. The same issues exist here in the U.S. wherever there are active and abandoned quarries, and we can all learn from sharing with each other. They have an active Facebook campaign page here: https://www.facebook.com/ StaySafeStayOutOfQuarries

Awareness of the dangers of ABANDONED QUARRIES has to be initiated in form of a public safety campaign. We request that the existing campaign STAY OUT STAY ALIVE – http://www.msha.gov be enacted as part of national awareness program in our schools similar to road safety or anti-drug campaign.

States with Most Deaths (2001-2013) via Geology.com

Ohio – 24

Pennsylvania – 19

California – 16

Arizona – 11

Indiana – 12

Illinois – 10

Iowa – 9

Missouri – 9

Wisconsin – 9

New Jersey – 9

Kentucky – 8

Massachusetts – 8

North Carolina – 8

Jonathan’s Story:

CBS 2 News

Fios 1 News

Inside Edition

Abandoned Quarries Awareness

Photo courtesy of Mineral Products Association of Northern Ireland. Many thanks to the Department of the Environment, Northern Ireland for sources and information.

 

Much Love!

e

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

IG | @authenticiteespeaks

Twitter | @authenticitee

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Photo Credits Sally Yabra & Mineral Products Association of Northern Ireland. No copyright infringement intended.


Soooo glad you’re here! Welcome new faces! There’s soooo many of you! Don’t be shy! Take a moment to introduce yourself and ask any questions you may have!

 
Much Love!

e

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com
IG | @authenticiteespeaks
Twitter | @authenticitee
Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Photo Credits Ericka Arthur for authenticitee speaks


As a married woman of 18 1/2 years and one with decades of Love Gone Right and Love Gone Wrong lived experience; I’ve been referred to on more than one occasion as “The Love Doctor“.

When I first started venting about Love as it relates to this pseudo series, it was almost exactly a month ago today. I woke up on a Sunday morning with much to say in my piece Good Sunday Morning! Let’s Talk About Love! I tried to be mindful of Sunday being a sacred day of worship (for my household) and how hard I would stomp on the subject. But I had a lot to say about it…and still do. 

During a very heated discussion with a loved one this past week, I mentioned their not being an expert in relationships, because of past failures and their immediate counterattack was something along the lines of, “And you’re an expert on Love? You’re not an expert and you write about it!”. They went on further to remind me I’m neither degreed nor certified in Love and the like but yet I write Love Poetry all the time!

True. I’m not licensed in Love; so then what does constitute an expert? I liken it to a Child Psychologist with no children or the Mother or Grandmother who can “out Chef” any top Chef but never went to cooking school a day in her life. Such is the case with Love. Who’s more qualified to talk about Love? One who’s lived it or one who’s studied it? 

What would make me an expert?Though I never said I was. Could one be considered an expert only if they have a high success rate in said matters of the heart? What constitutes success? Years of enduring a miserable relationship or being in an abusive relationship and having the courage to leave it? Multiple sexual partners with no disease or unwanted children or one relationship that is thought to be monogamous until an STD is contracted? The Marriage Counselor who’s never been married or the cousin who’s been divorced twice?

It’s all relative.

In that case the loved one with whom I was “dialoguing” with is just as much of an “expert” as I am; or not.

Thoughts?

e

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

IG | @authenticiteespeaks

Twitter | @authenticitee

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content
Photo Credits Ericka Arthur for authenticitee speaks with the exception of displayed image. Courtesy of Google Images- No copyright infringement intended.


LOVE

I say that word a lot.

I was taking a gander at Webster’s definition:

love

ləv/

noun

1.

an intense feeling of deep affection.

2. a person or thing that one loves.

verb

1. feel a deep romantic or sexual attachment to (someone).

And then I read the Biblical definition as recorded in 1st Corinthians 13: 4-7 (NASB):

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

LOVE. 

Love is stressing me out

Ought not be, right? But it is. I’m an extremely affectionate, passionate, God fearing woman, so I kept reading the Biblical list. Like Santa; I even checked it twice. Found out I was one who’d been both naughty and nice. 

I’m in the mood to fight for LOVE

LOVE. 

The word is overused so much that very few have even looked up the definition. It’s just…a given. Love to them basically equals something they really like. That’s it. Nothing more and nothing less. There’s no reflection on the ridiculously overlooked component to real love: SACRIFICE!

None. 

I write love poetry constantly. I write about it all…

My content is tastefully done and demonstrates a range of emotions. At times broken vernacular is used and others, the King’s English. It all depends on what I’m feeling at the time. I’d give the content I share, a PG-13 rating with an occasional NC-17 streak. By choice, I do not use profanity, sexually explicit photos or post pieces that would be classified as Erotica. However I find it very interesting that the prudish and “saints” (in this context the reference is applied to “church folk” with short term memory loss of their lives before their God encounter), are uncomfortable with publicly admitting they read and even screenshot my poetry on Instagram. 

Fascinating.

Especially considering the top reasons for divorce among Christians according to studies are:

1. Ongoing adultery/pornography 

2. Lack of communication

3. Drug or alcohol addictions/abuse

4. Physical/emotional abuse

5. Sexual problems


I liken those living vicariously through my transparency to the religious folk of Jesus’ day who couldn’t be seen talking to Him but would go to Him alone at night for help, advice and deliverance (John 3). 

Love. 

There’s nothing new under the sun and true healing ONLY comes from being honest about what’s hurting. 

To be continued. 

e

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com
IG | @authenticiteespeaks
Twitter | @authenticitee
Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. 

Photo Credits Ericka Arthur for authenticitee speaks