Paul Conklin, Licensed Navigator

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Paul’s son Karl has a school assignment that results in Paul bringing Karl into his job.

Paul Conklin - Licensed Navigator
By Angela Rasch

“Dad, can I ask you a few questions about your job?”

Karl and I were driving back from Miller’s Ale House - the one located on Gulf Center by Costco. I wasn’t wild about the service we received one time at the Miller’s on Kernel Circle. They didn’t seem to care – or were even aware – about what was happening before their very eyes.

I’d just inhaled a barbeque bacon cheeseburger. Karl went for the black bean veggie burger. He worries about the environment, which goes against the Florida grain. We like to believe that if you don’t think about it. . .maybe the next natural disaster won’t happen.

It’s funny how far apart our tastes in burgers have grown. I thought. Just like our dissimilar tastes in what to watch on TV. Miller’s had given him a choice of baseball with the Rays, soccer (can’t tell you the name of the teams), or basketball playoffs with the Magic. Karl ate quickly so we could get home and catch old reruns of Schitt’s Creek, a series that originally aired over a decade ago.

“Why the sudden interest in my work?” I quickly studied his face. Yesterday, he had been a tyke making sand cookies in our backyard – and now he’s doing college prep classes.

He smiled. “Two reasons: one – you’re the best dad in the world,” he teased. “And two – Mrs. Horne is making us write a four-hundred-word essay about what our parents do for a living.”

I winced. Katherine had died seven years ago when Karl had been ten. Karl hasn’t had “parents” for years. . .just “parent.” Some things never stop hurting. It’s been almost forty-eight hours since I ached for her, so I was due.

“I hope you’ve allowed yourself enough time to do a good job on this writing project?” It makes me feel like I’m parenting when I ask questions of him I know I don’t have to.

He nodded. “It isn’t due until Friday morning. We got the assignment today, which gives me tonight, and all day Wednesday and Thursday to work on it.”

“Next month, we’re going on college campuses visitations. All your hard work has paid off. Your 4.25 GPA is opening some college entrance doors for you.

He’s a much better student than I was. Karl wants to be a robotics engineer and build a better future for mankind. He does so many things better than me. He’s neater, which makes keeping our house clean much easier. Maria comes in twice a week, but if he was as sloppy as some boys, things could get rancid.

He dresses better than I ever did. At his age, I barely took the time to make sure I had a clean t-shirt to wear. Karl always looks good. Even though his hair is longer than I would ever wear mine, he keeps it clean.

I’ve been meaning to have a talk with Karl about what I do. It’s time. He’s old enough. There are some things I would prefer he hears from me, rather than from his friends.

He’s the center of my universe -- but I’m not sure he understands what I do or will be comfortable with the decisions I’ve made.

I pulled into our driveway. Our home sits about a mile from the Gulf and a short distance from the spring training home of the Minnesota Twins. Katherine and I always had managed to go to three or four spring training games a year -- if I was in town. “Let me grab a beer. Do you want a coke? We can sit in the library, and then I’ll answer whatever I can.”

“Could you get me a probiotic soda? I’m trying to lose a few pounds.”

“You’re already too thin,” I argued.

“Thin for a boy, maybe. But I’ll feel better if I drop five pounds before it’s serious beach season. I want to fit into my two-piece.” He grinned at his own joke.

Karl had a yellow pad balanced on his pressed-together knees and a pencil poised for action. “Paul Conklin – let’s start with the basics.”

I grinned. He’s taking this seriously, which is good. Some of what I might have to tell him could be hard to stomach for someone as sensitive as he seems to be. He volunteers at the hospital. They tell me he has an amazing ability to calm young trauma patients.

“Your business website defines you as a Licensed Navigator. Other than that -- it really doesn’t give much information,” he probed.

Where to start? How much can I safely tell him without risking losing him forever? “I’m required by state statute to have a website. The statute doesn’t specify what I’m required to disclose – other than that I have to state that I’m a Licensed Navigator and provide my license number so complaints to the state regulators can properly identify me.”

“You don’t even show our address. . .4684 West 7th. You list a P. O. Box. Why?”

“The vast majority of people are supportive of Licensed Navigators. But – the State of Florida asks that we maintain a low profile. . ..” . . .for personal security reasons.

“What does a “Licensed Navigator” do?”

Here we go. “What do you think I do?”

“Rod Chambers says you’re a bounty hunter.”

Rod wet the bed the first time he slept over – that had been about three years before Katherine died. “You tell Rod to stick to soccer. He’s good at soccer. Say – are you sure you want to quit soccer? You weren’t that bad of a mid-fielder.”

“I don’t like how rough the game has gotten.”

Katherine used to tell me all the time that Karl wasn’t like the other boys. I always bought model cars, construction sets, balls, and toy guns as presents for Karl. For some reason, Katherine thought he wanted kitchen play sets, Barbies, and art supplies. Thank goodness he grew out of that phase before things changed. “Rod doesn’t know what he’s talking about. A bounty hunter is a person who hunts down a criminal or fugitive for a reward. What I do is much more specialized.”

“I want and need specifics – for my report. But let’s start with a question that is in Mrs. Horne’s outline of key points. Why did you decide to go into your line of work?”

“Money?” I laughed. “Ten years ago, your mother was first diagnosed with cancer. We thought it would be a simple matter of her having a few treatments and maybe surgery. We quickly found out cancer would become our focal point. But - I was already sick of being away from you so much. You were acting like. . .. It was apparent you needed more male influence in your life.”

“What was your job at that time?”

I eased into the comfort of the past. “I traveled all over the United States, to trade shows and state fairs, selling patio umbrellas.”

“Like that big umbrella we have over the table in the backyard?”

“Exactly. I would sell six to ten umbrellas a day.” My record was the sixteen I sold in one day at the Oshkosh Air Show.

“Did you get paid a lot to do that?”

“My taxable income after expenses was about $250,000. We had established a commensurate lifestyle. My goal in switching jobs was to find something where I could make at least that much but be home every night by six o’clock with you and your mother.”

“Was there anything about selling umbrellas you didn’t like, other than being on the road?”

I nodded. “The people that sold things like me . . .who were on the circuit. . .were a bit rough around the edges. They would do anything for a buck. I wanted to get away from them before I started thinking that way. And -- I was developing carpal tunnel cranking that damned umbrella up and down for years – showing people how easily it worked.”

“Mom once told me you were the best salesman there ever was.”

I chuckled. “I talked your mom into marrying me. That took a good bit of salesmanship.” Karl won’t have any problem getting a perfect girlfriend when he decides it’s time. He’s so handsome he’s almost pretty. He has a lot of friends who are girls but hasn’t paired off.

“So -- you looked around and found the highest paying job you could qualify for?”

“Something like that. It was 2027. Things had happened that changed the world and . . .. You were only seven -- but you might remember that the State Capitol Building burned to the ground when you were five. The political reaction to that fire was immediate and drastic. The governor was forced to declare a state of emergency.”

“I don’t remember any of that -- but we’ve studied the Law of 2026 in school. The governor requested a suspension of the state constitution, which quickly was passed by an almost unanimous vote. He was given the power to create law without the consent of the legislature.”

“It was a turbulent time. I remember some calling what was happening ‘culture wars.’ People were scared.”

Karl bit his lip. “Our teacher said that the pendulum had swung too far to the left.”

My head bobbed. “The left was pushing an agenda that favored people who should be social outcasts, including transgenders. Historically – about one or two children out of a hundred had gender issues. Mass hysteria in our schools and the left-wing Woke agenda had caused that number to grow so that five out of every one hundred kids were declaring gender dysphoria. Some sociologists were suggesting that unless things were brought under control -- that it was predictable that one out of every ten kids would think they have a gender disorder.”

“Did they ever prove conclusively that the people who burned down the capitol were part of the Blue and Pink Mafia?”

Strange question. “Who else would have done such a thing?”

Karl shrugged. “Some have suggested it was an inside job.”

“Those who say things like that are nutjob conspiracy theorists. Anyway,” I pushed on, “the Law of 2026 provided for the creation of Navigators. There are forty Navigator positions in Florida. Even though we aren’t employees of the state. . .we do work closely with the Agency for Health Care Administration. We do all the work necessary to provide documented evidence and sworn statements so the court can declare a person legally transgender – or as we term it – ‘court ordered.’”

“Do you make as much money being a Navigator as you did when you sold umbrellas?”

“Uh-huh. At first, I barely scraped by. The state paid us $75,000 every time we closed a case. It soon became apparent that I could close a case every six weeks.”

Karl did some math on his notepad. “So -- you were making $650,000 a year.”

“I was grossing about $650,000 but my expenses were about $550,000. I was only making forty percent of what I did selling umbrellas. That’s when the State of Florida revised the compensation schedule for Navigators. They crunched some numbers and found that court costs were enormous. The State of Florida doesn’t collect state income tax. Consequently, they’re careful with their expenses. Once I had closed a case the legal process was running a four to five hundred thousand dollar tab for the state to reach extermination.”

“Extermination? Do you mean to say it was costing the state half a million dollars to exterminate a transgender?”


“I thought the Law of 2026 had made it clear that transgenders aren’t deserving of legal protection?”

“You’re absolutely right. When the Law first went into effect there were protests, but the governor banned the ACLU and jailed the ringleaders – eventually, everyone came around.” He seems to already know what I do. “Say. . .I’m going to have another beer. Do you want a refill?” This is going okay. Karl can get a bit squeamish. He seems okay. . .so far. A few minutes later, I’d dropped back into my chair after having set a bowl of pretzels between us. “What else do you need to know?”

He stared down at his notes. “You were explaining how your compensation changed.”

“Yep! That was a good day for us. The State offered a bonus compensation of $200,000 per case, if we delivered evidence that we had exterminated the ‘court-ordered’ transgender. After expenses, we clear about $75,000 per case. I can only do about six cases a year because I have to be so careful -- even with my full immunity under the law. But I still bring home double what I made selling umbrellas -- and I can be home every night with you.”

Karl’s face dropped. “Rod says that you’re a baby killer.”

I choked a bit on my beer. “Rod is a real piece of shit. His father has been deporting blacks to Marha’s Vineyard for years. One minute they’re downing a bucket of KFC and watermelon – minding their own business doing black shit – and the next thing they know -- Rod’s dad has rounded them up and put’em on a bus to Massachusetts. The state confiscates their belongings, so they get a ticket up north and twenty bucks. Nice guy . . . Rod’s dad. . . doing bigoted stuff all day long. Just so you know – I’ve never killed a baby.”

“But you do exterminate transgenders.”

“Once a person is ‘court-ordered’ as transgender they’re all but exterminated. The court has never lost a case. The state has mandated seven criteria for transgender. According to the Law of 2026 -- if a person meets four of the seven criteria they can be ‘court ordered’ as transgender. I have a personal standard of at least five criteria -- and even though the state allows hearsay, I don’t.” I have my own system. Ten – Three – One. Identify ten prospects. Work that list to generate three suspects. One out of the three suspects will eventually be ‘court-ordered.’

He scribbled on his pad. “If you’ve averaged six a year for the last nine years, that means you’ve exterminated over fifty transgenders.”

“I believe the actual numbers are sixty-eight ‘court ordered’ with forty-seven of those terminated.” I just completed the insurance application to renew my professional liability policy, so I’m certain those numbers are accurate.

“I was watching a documentary the other night about transgender extermination. They said that in the beginning, the Navigators were using poison -- but that was found to be inefficient.” He drew out each of the four syllables in “inefficient” to display his distaste.

“They got that right. . .a first for the ‘lame stream media.’” I need to be brutally honest. “We use assault weapons. I prefer headshots. I’ve never had a situation where the kill wasn’t clean and immediate.”

“What about rule number five?”

“Number five?”

“Thou shalt not kill? The fifth commandment. What does Father Casey say about your job?”

“I had a long talk with him before I started. He told me that as long as I was reasonably satisfied that all other means for curbing the transgender explosion had been exhausted, it was okay to do my job. Of course, I have to use humane force.”

“I suppose Father Casey would know. You’re still thinking about becoming a deacon, aren’t you?”

“I’ve started the program and reviewed possible seminaries -- but I won’t do anything definite, until you’ve started college.”

“Have you considered not working for bonuses? You could find a way to reduce expense and we could cut back our lifestyle so that you don’t have to kill anyone.”

I shrugged. “What would be the point? When a person is ‘court ordered’ as transgender, their name and identification points are provided to all forty Navigators. As a professional courtesy, the other Navigators won’t pooch my cases for five days, giving me first rights. However – after five days whoever does the extermination gets the bonus. If I don’t complete the extermination of the problem, one of the others will. It’s rare that a ‘court ordered’ survives a week in the wild before extermination. And – the state could terminate or non-renew my license -- if I’m not fully-active.”

“Are you the most successful Navigator?”

“I’m about average. The program has resulted in the extermination of about 2,200 transgenders. Florida is very happy with the results. The number of transgenders is a fraction of a percent. Extermination laws have saved the state a fortune. The crisis is under control. If it wasn’t for those damned sanctuary states, society would be trans-free. Had Roberts acted correctly sanctuary states would have been ruled unconstitutional.”

Karl stopped writing and looked pensive.

He looks a lot like Katherine, at times.

“I’ve got something I want to talk through with you,” he stated. “But you have to promise not to overreact.”

I nodded.

He left the room, and then came back a few moments later with a small book that had a blue and pink cover.

“That book is banned,” I stated. “It contains some of the vilest propaganda imaginable. I suppose Rod gave it to you?”

He ignored my question. “We have a duty as a citizen to be informed.”

I bristled. “Part of that duty is to make sure our information is valid. That book contains nothing but disinformation.”

“There’s nothing in here I can’t find on the internet,” he argued.

“You and all the other eighteen-and-unders have been blocked from all social media sites!”

He laughed. “I don’t even need Rod to tell me how to get around those feeble attempts to hide the truth from us.”

“Everybody has to decide what ‘truth’ is,” I stated. “That book was published by Woke Press. That’s a George Soros Foundation-backed, northern state operation that simply doesn’t understand the world of today. Being transgender has become so dangerous to the rest of us that we have no choice other than a final solution which eliminates those who are unfit for reproduction.”

“Have you ever wished you could’ve asked one of the babies you killed how they felt about it?”

His query struck me with the force of a tsunami. Have I lost him? “When I exterminate . . . they never know what hit them. I’m certain they have no idea that they’ve been identified, or even that they’re under investigation. I’m very discrete. And, the punishment for letting a transgender know that a Navigator is investigating them is five to ten years of imprisonment. That punishment is doubled, once the transgender has been ‘court ordered.’”

Karl scowled. “According to this book, transgender shooters have been involved with only .11 percent of all mass murders even though most creditable statisticians agree about one and one-half percent of the general population is transgender. Cisgender males make up about fifty percent of the general population, but almost ninety-eight percent of mass murders are committed by cisgender males. You should be shooting cisgender males.”

I scoffed. “I hardly know where to start. First of all . . . just using the word “cisgender” can land you in jail. We don’t say ‘cisgender’ in Florida. But. . .more importantly. . .everyone knows that transgenders are violent people. It’s common knowledge and beyond dispute. You need to burn that book before someone sees it and gets the wrong idea.”

“Books don’t kill people,” he asserted.

“The false ideas in them sure as hell do. The Blue and Pink Mafia has for years been behind most of what’s bad in our country.”

“The Blue and Pink Mafia is a construct of the far right. Not one shred of real evidence has ever surfaced that proves its existence.” He shook his book at me. “On the other hand, it’s been proven beyond doubt that inclusiveness is beneficial for our economy.”

“Is this all about that damn book, or do you really have a school assignment to get done?” I asked. Although the topic isn’t so great, just having an extended conversation with my son is making this one of the best days I’ve had in years.

“If I don’t get this report written by Friday, I’ll run the risk of losing my perfect grade in Mrs. Horne’s class.”

I just couldn’t be any prouder of my boy despite our differences.

He picked up his yellow pad, having set the book down where I couldn’t grab it. “How do you find the evidence you need to get a court order?”

“The Law of 2026 provides a $10,000 reward to anyone providing evidence that leads to a court order,” I answered.

“Are people actually willing to provide evidence for that amount of money -- knowing that it could lead to a child being shot?”

That was a little ‘judgy.’ “I have never shot a child under the age of twelve . . . and never will. Most evidence comes from teachers and clergymen. The Law of 2026 provides that a teacher who willfully withholds evidence that their student is transgender will be stripped of her credentials and not allowed to work in Florida schools. Clergymen can lose the tax-exempt status for their parish. The teachers and priests would also be facing five years in prison if they won’t cooperate with me. As a Navigator, I’m provided a list of schools and churches to work with. I keep busy.”

“So – if I understand you right. You call around to schools and churches searching for probable cases and work the evidence.”

“Bingo! That’s right. Even though I have a personal rule against terminating someone else’s case, I check that list of ‘court-ordereds’ about once a day. I don’t want to spin my wheels. We don’t have geographic boundaries and other Navigators might run across transgenders in the Ft. Myers area and do the spade work. Here, I’ll fire up my computer and show you how I check for new ‘court-ordereds.’”

With Karl looking over my shoulder, I brought up the statewide list of those who had been ‘court ordered’ as transgender during the previous day.

Listed third was Karl Anthony Conklin -- at 4684 West Seventh, Ft. Myers.

This Is the End, Beautiful Friend

Even though I've posted over a hundred stories totaling over one million words and published nearly twenty books on Amazon -- kudos and comments mean as much to me as they did when I posted my first story here two decades ago.


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The Handshake That Hides the Snake

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Oh, my . . . .

Emma Anne Tate's picture

Jill, my friend . . . . That was dark. But, as always, well-thought out, well written, and based on a plausible extrapolation from our current moment. Not, I think, the most plausible by any means. But the fact that the conversation is worth having is a sad, sad thing.



People seem quite willing to allow women to die due to birth complications. The sanctity of life is a weird concept that can be twisted and turned by all. My attempt was to have "Paul" come across as Joe Ordinary who had absolutely no problem blowing off the heads of trans without anything resembling a trial.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

I was afraid of that

Patricia Marie Allen's picture

You telegraphed the ending early on. It's a bit dark for my taste, but well written.


Happiness is being all dressed up and HAVING some place to go.
Semper in femineo gerunt


I started inkling in the second paragraph. I wanted this story to resemble a train wreck. You know what's going to happen. . .but need to keep your eyes on it.

Thanks for commenting.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)


What a rough finish. Good story though.

You Wrote That Ten Years Ago

The last ten years have had highs and lows for trans. Right now things are bad.

Perhaps if we can ever put Trump behind us the world will swing toward love and acceptance.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)


joannebarbarella's picture

When the descriptive word is banned and the books are banned or burned, then laws from the Nazis cannot be far behind. Assassination by gun is a peculiar US tradition.

What Scared Me

Paul scared me with his seemingly logical mind and total acceptance of what he was doing as being the road to somewhere better. It's just a job.

Tonight on the news they told of a group of young men who broke into a Hyundai and Kia dealership. They had several cars ready to go when the police arrived.

Most of them got away leaving one behind . . . he's twelve.

I get it. The world is scary.

The right wants you to believe that trans are making the world more scary.

We aren't.

We are just people. Some good. Some bad.

Thanks for your comment.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

The Banality of Evil

laika's picture

In Terry Gilliam's dystopian masterpiece BRAZIL two scenes impressed me in regards to what you said about your story's protagonist, Jill. The government's goons that round up suspected dissidents are these scary unstoppable anonymous things in full body armor (Star Wars imperial troupers but horribly unstylish and clunky, like everything else in the film); until they get the movie's hero into their police van and remove their helmets; and they're just a couple of not too bright guys who have a workplace conversation that's completely ordinary. They're guys you've worked with. Then later when Sam is taken to the MINISTRY OF INFORMATION, the daughter of the man who works in "Information Retrieval" is playing with her toys on the carpet in his office, ignoring the sounds of her daddy at work in the next room, torturing someone. This is her world and it's totally normal to her. Her daddy hurts the bad people to keep the good people safe. They're funny when they scream sometimes.

This is the face of oppression and you wouldn't be able to pick it out in a crowd. Leonard Cohen's poem ALL THERE IS TO KNOW ABOUT ADOLF EICHMANN describes his height, his weight, how many fingers and toes he has, all average, and ends with the line: What did you expect, fangs?

John Conroy's 2001 book Unspeakable Acts, Ordinary People is about torturers who work for brutal regimes (in real life Ministries of Information), but it could just as easily have been about Paul and what he does for a living. And it reveals that professional torturers aren't psychopathic monsters, they're surprisingly average; or they were going into that trade; which desensitized them to things we tell ourselves we could never do. Some people have a gristly fascination with serial killers, baffled and wondering how anyone could have so little human in them that they could torture and kill other human beings like that. What absolutely scares the shit of me me isn't the occasional serial killer (and they're not all that hard to figure out, they're just sickoes without a conscience who get off on killing, so they do. And they don't deserve all the mythologizing people do about them) as much as the horrors ordinary citizens can commit when the government (or a psychology professor named Millgram) tells them it's okay and normal; especially if the targeted group is painted as a threat, who is turning our kids trans thru osmosis and burned down the Reichstagg building- er, I mean the state capitol. Yeah, I caught that parallel.

He looks down on what another kid's father does, capturing racial minorities for deportation from the state, and doesn't seem to like some of Florida's racist policies; but I'll bet he wouldn't so much as sign a petition to change them. That's life in an authoritarian state: Don't rock the boat, keep your head down and be glad it isn't you they're after...

So Paul's job is just something that if he didn't do it someone else would, it's good money, and he only works a few days a month. And then the inhuman system he works for suddenly hits him personally and it's too late to question it.

A brilliant story. Not a happy story but a necessary one.
~hugs, Veronica

Author-Tore-in-Two State of Veronicaland

When I was young and Ike ruled our country, we liked him. Really.

He had been a sweet guy who told the Nazis -- after Hitler did his bunker exit -- that if they didn't do exactly what he wanted he would pull back his troops -- and let Joe have his ways. Joe had some diabolical mischief planned that included raping and pillaging.

The USA was a GREAT place to live in the 50s if you conformed to a few standards -- such as being white and male. Ike loved white male dominance so much that he lived in a cabin just off the fairway at a place where they played an annual golf tournament called "the Mastuhs."

I was a confused little boy? who thought he was unique. I was convinced that if people knew my innermost thoughts they would drag me off to the State Asylum. Several of my retro stories, such as The Novitiate, describe my trauma. (Little did I know that being scared shitless was GREAT. It was. Just ask the red-hat crowd.)

At that time, I'm sure the percentage of trans in the USA was minuscule. The pray-the-gay-away crowd are hell-bent to scare people into line. It was effective back-in-the-day. If the little ninnies of that time "offed" themselves, the surviving relatives will tell each other it was a hunting accident. It was amazing how many hunting accidents occurred out-of-season. My mother's bachelor uncle died in a hunting accident in the spring. Maybe -- being gay didn't run in our family - it galloped. . .per Cary Grant. (Did you know Arsenic and Old Lace was based on a real-life mass murder?)

My mother's aunt was the only gay person I knew about until I was in high school . . . and she was referred to as being "that way." Then the parish pedophile priest was outed . . . uhmmm . . . in whispers that were accompanied by quick denials. He was quietly shuffled off to run the Newman Center at the State University -- and no doubt found boys older than his normal twelve to fourteen diet. And - there was that guy who played b-ball with us on the courts by the college fieldhouse, who someone told me not to turn my back on. I had no idea why.

During my time in college, ambulances often visited the girls' dorms late at night. Sometimes the girls didn't live. They were the ones who didn't know enough about the Winnipeg alternative - 232 miles to a backroom abortion. And now -- about half our country has spun the calendar back to that awful reality.

So don't talk to me about "it" can't happen here. It did happen here. We killed off little boys and girls gleefully by making them hate themselves so much they pulled the trigger or cut their wrists. In many ways, Paul's final solution is more humane than what happened every day in Ike-world. (Maybe calling my protagonist "Paul" was too subtle. Perhaps if I had named him "Saul.")

I'm not aware of the novel you mentioned with the Reichstagg building. I'll have to look for that story. Sounds delightful . . . but also implausible. It's probably a story about boys who dressed up in Heil Heels.

Everything is fine -- indeed!


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)


I'm quite sure it's a reference to the burning of the Reichstag in Berlin, Germany, 02/27/1933.
And Emporor Nero supposedly did the same in the Roman empire to Rome and blamed the Christians afterwards.

I had the ending

From the word "exterminate". But I had to wait for the train wreck. I'd like to think that this isn't possible but lynching happened less than a hundred years ago.
Thanks for the story.


Strange Fruit

Billie Holiday recorded Strange Fruit in 1939.

It was 1998 when Matthew Sheppard was hung on that barb wire fence.

Hate does crazy things.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

Very dark Jill. I was

leeanna19's picture

Very dark Jill. I was thinking of writing a short trans story over easter. It may be the antidote to this one. I hated the idea behind it because I can see where it came from. Hopefully the "anti-trans" stuff will fade after the election.

The UK is full of media asking politicians "what is a woman?", knowing full well what ever answer they give they will be torn to shreds by at least one group.

I enjoyed the story in a dark shocking way. Very well executed if you don't mind the pun.


What Is a Woman?

What's on second.

I'm in a bit of a legal tangle right now. Some people who owe me $53,000 are being willfully ignorant and obtuse.

People are willing to be very stupid. . .for money.

People are also willing to be very stupid for power.

It's a shame that we happen to be their football.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

It seems far fetched

Dee Sylvan's picture

But maybe not. I certainly hope that the right wing wackos as well as the left wing wackos never get a real foothold. Thanks for sharing Jill. And congratulations!!! :DD



It seems that wackos are wackos. . .right or left.

Right now it's the authoritarian right in the USA that has us as a target.

I'm not sure about TERFs. They just seem to be misfits.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

Heinlein would be pleased

Well told, just a smidge into the future but still plausibly believable with a not totally unexpected but still great ironic ending.

>>> Kay

Heinlein Was a Libertarian

I called myself a Libertarian until Rand Paul fouled those waters.

Thanks for the comment.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

Candy coated shit

I think it's something many (all?) totalitarian regimes use to hide the most heinous crimes. Here the euphemism of "navigator" is used to hide the fact that Paul is nothing more than a government approved assassin. "Navigator" sounds like a nice job on a ship or plane. The nazis used the term "special treatment" for Jews being killed in concentration camps. And the Putinator follows (partly) in these footsteps.

Navigators Already Exist

I picked the term "Navigator" out of the Affordable Care Act.

Democrats are not perfect. Although I come across in many posts here as a far-left-leaning person who sees Democrats through rose-colored glasses, I can clearly see the warts on Democrats as well.

Democrats play footsie with unions. Our economy functions best when deals are made with the same principles as a three-legged stool. All aspects of the deal near to be fair or it will wobble and fail in its basic function. Yet, when Democrats construct regulations and laws for unions they see unions as having one major job. . .providing them campaign donations.

The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) is quite popular with a favorable rating from 62%. Many more people have healthcare today. Medicare has been expanded. 89% of those receiving Medicare have a favorable view of the program. Drug costs have been addressed. Maximum lifetime benefits have been eliminated. More screenings are covered. Pre-existing condition restrictions have been eliminated.

This all came at a cost with higher premiums and new taxes. Further, we have had to learn to live within care networks which can be frustrating. But in balance Obamacare has been a good thing.

However - the worst part of Obamacare -- to me -- was the Navigators. In the beginning, the government tried to eliminate insurance agents from the process. I attended many, many meetings where government pukes spoke haughtily about the huge savings involved in cutting out agents. They spoke glowingly of Navigators who would help consumers purchase insurance. They constructed websites that would allow Navigators to move you through the purchase - with "ease."

I was an insurance agent. No agent was getting rich selling health insurance. You did it to help out your client to retain other lines of coverage that were more profitable to sell. Revenue from healthcare made up lass than one percent of my income. It has been proven in the insurance industry for years by companies like Progressive who sell through both channels that there is no cost savings in cutting out agents. Someone has to fulfill that function.

So why Navigators? Was our government just badly informed?

No. If you peeled back the law you found that Navigators could be union representatives. Democrats were simply trying to funnel money to unions who could funnel it back to them.

Democrats. . .who knew how important the Affordable Care Act was for millions of people, nearly cratered it in the first year by trying to force people to use Navigators when they wanted to place their insurance through someone local they trusted. It was only when the government realized their funding toy wasn't going to work that they backed away from Navigators.

The term Navigator never made it into the mainstream and the money never rolled into the Democratic Party at the level they had planned.

So - I used that term and its seamy underbelly in my story. My guess is that Paul Conklin would be "required" to be a good Democrat. Good Democrats attend fundraisers and bring their checkbooks. Good Democrats make sure other party members are favored. I lost $millions when I refused to be a Good Democrat, if that meant breaking laws. Many Democrats are pukes.

I grew up in North Dakota. If you ever want to see sickening proof of how crappy the Democratic Party can be, study the life of "Wild" Bill Langer. He was a brilliant politician and lawyer with a staggering lack of principles. He grifted on a major scale.

Now - if you're Republican and giggling at this, just know that Langer was eventually beaten by Gerald Nye for a Senate seat. Nye was part of the nazi-sympathizers who supported Hitler well into 1944. . .for money.

Our country exists in spite of our politicians.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

Me republican? Only over my

Me republican? Only over my dead body, if hell freezes over and the pope admits to being trans. :-p
That was more than I wanted to know about navigators in health care, but it was still interesting, thx. :-)

One of the biggest jokes is

leeanna19's picture

One of the biggest jokes is that Americans pay more for American made drugs than most of the rest of the world. The NHS pays fairly low prices, which is necessary when you are giving them away free.. ( Well working folks pay "national insurance") Te NHS as a single organisation has huge purchasing power.

Too many individuals in politics and the drug companies make sure the people in the USA are charged full price. I wonder if the madical insurance companies invest in drug companies to offset the prices they are charged?


Well You Really Nailed

The far-right thinking in this story. I used to think like Paul, and dismissed any ideas other than my own as wrong. I am very sad to say that it took having a transgender child of my own to realize that I was wrong. This story, while very dark, reinforces my belief that I was so terribly wrong. Seeing attitudes that I used to have being spouted by another reinforces to me that I was a narrow minded person. Thank you for helping me maintain awareness.


The far-left is no better.

Two years ago, when I read what Biden was planning my stomach roiled.

We just spent our way out of a pandemic. Massive spending curbed this existential threat. What at one-time appeared to be a huge blow to our economy with the majority of small businesses failing turned into a government trough.

My business received huge checks from the government. I donated a large share of that money to local causes . . . but worried about rampant inflation.

Although the line between Biden's programs and the inflation rate is far from straight, he is adding pressure. The timing could have been much better.

All I can say is that the far-left wanted it to be much worse.

As an author, my job is not to teach as much as it is to cause you to think.

Could it happen? How can I prevent it happening?


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

I think genocides should be

I think genocides should be addressed in history lessons in schools starting at age 10. Every year 2 genocides should be discussed. And in parallel the human rights.
Maybe that would help.


Good idea.

Unfortunately, I don't see Southern states going along with a study of what was done on the Trail of Tears.


Angela Rasch (Jill M I)

Amenian Genocide Never Happened

BarbieLee's picture

According to Turkey, a million Armenians who died at the hands of the Muslims never happened and if the U.S. passes a resolution claiming it did Turkey will pass sanctions against the U.S. For talking about something Muslims did but never happened. Got that?

On another note someone mentioned the Trail of Tears where the Indian tribes were force marched to Reservations in the middle of nowhere which would later become Oklahoma. The estimates of death were in the thousands, possibly hundreds of thousands. That wasn't the end of it as the reservations were nothing more than concentration camps where thousands more died. Something else most never hear about is Indians didn't have any exposure to small pox before white settlers. Blankets from white settlements where those had it were taken and given to the Indians.

Humans are the only creatures who get pleasure in the pain and or death of another.

Oklahoma born and raised cowgirl


BarbieLee's picture

Jill, my love, you would even think of something like this, yet put it to paper and ink. How about we go fishing? We can talk about the scientific and mechanical inventions in the world that were squashed because the powers in charge felt threatened. I might even show you the design of an engine a patent was applied for. The patent office rejected the application as not feasible. I believe that was a first.
Haven't baked a chocolate float cake in a long long time. Let me know you're coming by and I'll see if I can bake another one for the last time. It's safe, no one died the first time.
Hugs Jill
Isaiah 2:20-22

Oklahoma born and raised cowgirl

Dammit Jill!

Why didja have ta go and make me think? Just kidding, That was a very powerful story and the ending, while being slightly telegraphed, was still a gut punch and a half. Thank you again for another well written and thought provoking story. Be well, and may you stick around to write another 199 stories!

ps I sometimes wish I could share these stories elsewhere, or the links to them, but I fear the publicity it might bring