2017 Year In Review For We Hold These Truths To Be Self-Evident

Word Press no longer produces annual reports, but they have given bloggers access to statistical information.  If you blog on Word Press and want to see your statistics, sign into your account and go to https://wordpress.com/stats/year.

A Zillion Thanks

There are no words to express my gratitude to followers and participants.  According to 2017 statistics as of December 26, 2017, 1139 of this blog’s followers are Word Press bloggers.  We have a fantastic and diverse blogging community.  They, as well as followers who are not bloggers,  are my motivation.

A Slow Year For Writing

This year has been one where I’ve not written as many posts as in the past.  That’s due to more than a handful of reasons, and has caused me to consider how I will continue in 2018.

Since the presidential election, the political atmosphere in America is suffocating, with things happening on almost a daily basis. I try to keep up, but every week it looks like another name is added to the list of those with connections to Russia, or another person in the Trump administration leaving the building.  There is no way of being on blogs and/or Twitter without reading about Trump.  Quite frankly, I’m sick of it.   I see Trump as a dictator and danger to America, our constitution, and equality for all.  In the coming year, I might reblog more posts about politics.

From The Beginning Until Now

This blog began because in February 2012, Trayvon Martin, an unarmed 17-year old, was walking home in Sanford, Florida when he was killed.  That brought me to the internet and made me aware of a world of hate and racial animus that I thought had dissolved into the archives of history.  I followed the trial of George Zimmerman, and I’ve kept the focus of following trials for over 5 years now.

On this blog, a search by category returned 80 posts under “trials.”  Since 2012, media sources have changed.  Trials are not live streamed like they were years ago.  News sources might make some videos available on their website, but not on Youtube where they can be embedded in blog posts.  The best I’ve been able to do under such circumstances is seek trial information on Twitter and post that in the comment section until the jury or judge (if a bench trial), reaches a verdict.

The federal court system does not allow cameras of any sort in the courtrooms, so those trials always have to be reported by depending on news sources.  After the initial blog post, we keep up-to-date in the comment section.

This year, I also created a pull-down sub-menu to “Cases/Victims”.  When hovering, the names of victims appear in the pull-down and you would need to use the middle scroll of your mouse to see all of the names.  Then clicking on a name returns posts about that person, including any trials.  When clicking on “Cases/Victims” without scrolling through the names, it will return all posts about all cases.

Absent Bloggers

It is not unusual for some who blog to take breaks.  There are others who announce their retirement.  For example, this year in April, Kstreet (The Fifth Column) retired from blogging.  You might remember reblogs here from her blog, many titled “10 Things You Need To Know Today.”

Then, there are bloggers who do not announce taking vacation, a break or retiring.  I wonder what happened and if they are alright.  Fatherkane is one such blogger.  He last posted on his blog, The Last Of The Millenniums in June of this year.  I miss his humor.

Getting Back to The Year-End Report … ;

From January 1st and as of December 26, 2017, We Hold These Truths To Be Self-Evident had;

37,906 visitors


6,722 “likes”


The top 3 posts with the most views in 2017 were:

9,115, The Jeffrey Dahmer Victim Who Did Not Have To Die. (Published August 2015)

5,653, Man Who Likened Himself To George Zimmerman Found Guilty of Second Degree Murder. (Published September 2015)

1537, The Impact of Trayvon Martin’s Death on America.  (Published July 2014)

For two years in a row now, posts published in previous years received more views than newer posts.  The Impact of Trayvon Martin’s Death on America has ranked in the highest viewed posts for 2 years in a row.

The post receiving the all-time record for views to-date is 32 Guards Fired From The Florida Department of Corrections, with 33,523 views.  It was published in December 2014 and continues being viewed.

It was also a busy year for referrals with 26, 558 views via search engines and 4,865 views via Facebook.

This year, a long-time follower, chuquestaquenumber1, wrote posts for the blog.  His posts received 645 views.  He writes when he has time and I appreciate his contributions.  Then too, there were writers who retired from writing before this year whose blog posts are still being read.  For example, BlushedBrown retired in 2013 after the George Zimmerman trial, yet her posts received 46 views this year.


Word Press does a good job with the statistics in the “Insights” section.  That section allows for comparing year to year, and month to month stats.

The busiest month this year was July, with 14,300 views.  I published 16 posts that month. The busiest month for all time was September 2016 with 40,800 views.  I published 25 posts that month.

A Word About Awards

Peer-to-peer awards are wonderful recognition from the blogging community.  This year, there were nominations that I did not follow-through to accept.  Things have changed since the awards were first circulated with the biggest change being newer Themes or blog layouts.  Most blog awards require the posting of the award on the blog’s border, but the newer Word Press themes do not have borders.  Along with that, most nominations require paying it forward and the number of required blogs appears to have increased over the years.  This is why that is a problem with award acceptance …

Some bloggers no longer accept awards.  I don’t know all of their reasons, but I slowed down with accepting this year because it has become increasingly difficult to identity blogs that accept awards, have Themes where they can be displayed, and an About page where nominations can be posted in the comment section.  Additionally, Word Press now provides more than one way to access the Admin side and there are bloggers who are unfamiliar with image widgets and how to size award logos.

In other words, although I’ve not reached the point of saying I no longer accept Awards, I do have to consider what is required by the Rules in accepting them.

What’s Ahead For 2018

That’s a good question.  Along with following trials, I’ll see whatever else moves me.  Feel free to give me suggestions.

On To 2018!


Here’s wishing everyone a healthy New Year.  May we continue working for equality for all.

Posted on 12/28/2017, in Potpourri, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 16 Comments.

  1. Xena you are so knowledgeable aboit wordpress, stats, borders, awards you have made me think. I once accepted awards and now i dont. I never thought about themes , i just find it hard to choose one blogger over another.

    Your review of the year was heart warming and insightful.

    Wishing you a great 2018 Happy New Year.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hello Thoughts!
      It is difficult deciding what blogs to nominate. That would run me crazy at times and looking for blogs that I had not previously nominated is what made me aware of the Themes and their “About” page. As time went on and there was an award to pay forward, I used the gravatars in “like” from the latest posts. Some do not have links to their blogs on their gravatar profiles. So, it became very time consuming, particularly when the rules require nominating 10 or more blogs.

      May you have a wonderful New Year and all of your heart’s desires be fulfilled.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Xena,

    I miss Sheila of KStreet to this day. This has been a harrowing world since November 2016. I can’t help but think that the Trayvon Martin case was a harbinger of today’s times.

    I will be always grateful for your help as a mentor.

    The one benefit resulting from President Trump’s reign, is that many of us have been reminded that “we the people” have to become more vigilant about the state of our democracy and we need to be willing to fight for its health.

    I am believing that 2018 will be the year when the coalition of the decent which includes the democrats, those who are part of the resistance groups like the Women’s March, Indivisible and others, the majority of Independents and a significant number of centrist republicans and even some conservatives, fight to save our fragile democracy by taking back our country..

    Hugs, Gronda

    Liked by 2 people

    • Gronda,
      I too miss Shelia. When she first announced retiring, I ask that she consider posting maybe 2 or 3 days a week instead of 7. She did that for awhile.

      Regarding mentoring, I’m happy to help.

      Hopefully, American voters will stop allowing politicians to tell us what the issues are, and they will start listening to us. Throughout the years, I’ve sickened with men telling women what they shouldn’t do in abortion choices; straight people telling gays that they should not have equal rights; and Whites telling Blacks that institutional racism does not exist. That might appeal to prejudicial and bigoted people who live in a bubble, but not to the masses who experience diversity on a daily basis and who understand our constitution.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. yahtzeebutterfly

    Xena, I wish you and everyone here a wonderful New Year filled with blessings and goodwill.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Happy New Year in advance to you too!

    In terms of suggestions, my suggestion is that, if you decide to reblog some materials on politics, maybe reblog on issues that would otherwise get lost amid Trump’s latest tweet or action? One of the things about Trump is that there (at least to me) seems to be so much attention on his latest attention-grabbing tweet that we often lose sight of the less catchy, albeit arguably more important, issues in the political world. There are many examples of such issues, and I’m sure you’re aware of at least a few of them. I hope I’m making sense, though I have a sinus infection so maybe I’m not!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Brendan,
      Sorry to hear that you have a sinus infection. I go through that about twice a year. The medication can render me so drowsy that I have to question if I’m making sense. LOL.

      Thanks for the suggestion. I might need to expand on the blogs that I follow in order to see if others are writing about political issues that are not the center of attention, but is information that the public needs to know. Generally, I tweet headlines for those things because they are on news sources and Word Press no longer has “Press This” for news sources. That was a real disappointment. As soon as I learned how to and began using it, Word Press discontinued it. (sigh)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Well, I’m glad I’m making sense!

        I think I came onto WordPress after they got rid of that feature. It sounds like it would’ve been useful. Sigh indeed.

        But yeah, that seems like a good idea (expanding on blogs you follow to see if others are writing about issues generally not discussed otherwise). Who knows whether that’ll produce any good luck, but it seems like it’s worth a shot!


        • Brendan,
          Having taken a break from writing blog posts just before Christmas, I used the Word Press reader to search for blog posts regarding George Zimmerman threatening entertainer Jay-Z who is producing a documentary series on Trayvon Martin. The returns were to websites for news sources, so there was no reblog feature. If Press This was still active, I could have used it to post what they wrote. With Press This, I could have added that Trayvon’s parents appear in the new movie “Marshall” starring Chadwick Boseman.

          Being that it’s the holiday season, it looks as if I’m not the only blogger taking a break. LOL! But yeah, I’m going to search for more blogs that write on need to know issues.

          Liked by 2 people

  5. Your work here, full of your heart, is appreciated and will always be remembered!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mindyme,
      Thanks so much for your kind words. You were with me before this blog was opened, and through hurricanes, personal priorities, and sickness, you’ve stuck with me. You are precious, dear one.

      Big Hug smiley face


  6. Useful to see your stats – thanks for sharing.
    You now have one new follower 😉
    You may also be interested in this blog, which deals with a prisoner’s perspective on life and the prison system: https://mynameisjamie.net/


    • jkaybay,
      Thanks for the comment and your invitation. I’ve been following Jamie’s blog for months and enjoy it. Thanks for the follow also. Have a Happy New Year.


  7. chuquestaquenumber1

    Continue the good work. May 2018 prove to be more productive.


    • Chuquest,
      Thanks so much for being here, and for your posts. May this new year give you your heart’s desires.


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