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This morning I wrote a post about a baby who lived only forty minutes after her birth and how that story made me cry. Then I compared that beautiful tribute I’d read from a member of her family to the video of pro-Planned Parenthood protesters here in San Antonio who bragged about having abortions.

I deleted that blog post just as I’ve deleted most other blog posts that touched on controversial subjects. Recently, I deleted 94 out of 200 draft posts on my site. That’s how much I censor myself.

Yet I’m a woman who believes passionately in certain things. I have very strong political views. I love my country deeply. I was an Air Force dependent, active duty Navy, and married to a Marine. It is difficult for me, sometimes, to keep my mouth shut and not to post about certain things. The more insane the world gets the harder it is.

You can always tell when I’m having a difficult time because I will go radio silent for days.

You see, I’m a writer. That pretty much defines who I am. I tell stories and I love telling stories. The one I’m working on right now, for example, excites me so much that I can barely wait to start work every morning.

So, I have to ask myself what’s more important to me? The identity my strong opinions gives me or my identity as a writer? There are times when it’s almost a tossup, frankly. More and more lately I’ve felt that it was necessary for me to stand up and say: this is who I am. This is who Karen Ranney really is. I’ve gotten the feeling that we’re reaching critical mass, that the time has come for people of conscience to declare themselves, for us to say, “No more,” when it comes to certain things.

So let me put it to you this way. If it’s a choice of life over death I choose life. If it’s a choice between being crazy or sane I choose sanity. (And sanity isn’t that difficult to define, lately.) If it’s a choice between tolerance and violence I choose tolerance. If it’s a choice between facts and feelings I choose facts. If I must choose between being a victim or being an independent, rational, thinking human being who accepts responsibility for the stupidity or validity of every choice I’ve ever made, I will take the latter, thank you.

After this post I will once more retreat to the mild mannered writer I appear to be most of the time. Just know that there’s a thumping heart beneath each post. If there’s something stupid, hideous, anti-American, or just plain wrong happening in the world I probably know about it and I’m no doubt ranting silently. However, I’ll try to keep my true nature under wraps for the most part.

I just thought it was important that you know who I am. Karen Ranney, teller of stories and passionate woman.