Saturday, July 31, 2004

Boot



It speaks for itself, no?

Friday, July 30, 2004

Just Wrong

There's been some rumors going around about the opening prayer at the Republican National Convention in New York City. More specifically, about who will be giving the opening prayer. It's almost like a fairy tale, gone horribly wrong. It's been rumored that it's going to be Jerry Falwell!

Oh happy days.

The epitome of "compassionate conservatism"! With every-lasting quotes such as


If you're not a born-again Christian, you're a failure as a human being.

He exudes compassion, does he not? What about Jewish Republicans, atheist Republicans, Muslim Republicans? I can see them uniting, not dividing, already. It's almost as if they're attempting to convey that they are a party of the people, for the people, by the people, at the same time as they make sure that those people are white, rich, heterosexual and Christian.

And who can forget


AIDS is not just God's punishment for homosexuals; it is God's punishment for the society that tolerates homosexuals.

Such a wonderful guy, isn't he? And there's a very real possibility that he'll be speaking at the Republican Party Convention! I welcome the idea. I can speak volumes of his greatness. I remember, in particular, how he talked about the infallibility of the Bible. It was perfect.


The Bible is the inerrant ... word of the living God. It is absolutely infallible,without error in all matters pertaining to faith and practice, as well as in areas such as geography, science, history, etc.

And he's right, you know. The Bible is dead on in the way of science. Take, for example, the fact that a bat is a bird. Leviticus 11:13-19 says


And these are they which ye shall have in abomination among the fowls; they shall not be eaten, they are an abomination: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, And the vulture, and the kite after his kind; Every raven after his kind; And the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind, And the little owl, and the cormorant, and the great owl, And the swan, and the pelican, and the gier eagle, And the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat.

And, of course, Leviticus 11:6 says that rabbits chew their cud.


And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you.

Something that always confused me: Were animals made first or was Adam made first? I see in Genesis 1:25-26, it says that the animals were made first.


And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

But in the next chapter of the same darn book, Genesis 2:18-19 says that Adam was made first.


And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

There are literally more than fifty different contradictions such as this in the Bible, and that's okay. It really is. I believe you can see the contradictions in the this book and still get out of it an understanding of religion. The Bible is not God. It may be a way of getting to know God, but it does not have to be infallible. People use that adjective in order to solidify their claims of discrimination against a group of people.

Yeah, yeah, you may be thinking. Of course I have to bring up discrimination. But it's true. Noah's son Ham accidently saw his father's nakedness. When Noah found out about this indescretion, he condemned his son to forever be the slave of his brothers. And being the only family left on the earth, there are now many descendents from Ham. Oh yeah, and Ham and his family traditionally travelled south afterwards to set up a base for their family. Yeah, that's right, Ham and his family went to Africa. Oh, that's right! Noah told Ham, who went to Africa, that his descendents would forever be the slaves of his brothers. Slavery is a-okay! It's that easy! The Bible says it's so.

And none of this, the hatred of blacks, Jews, gays, anyone, lends itself to knowing God any better. And that's why people like Jerry Falwell don't truly understand what it is to know God. They may think that they do, but they don't. They use this fallible piece of amazing literature to advance whatever crazy talk their dreaming up next.

And he's speaking at the Republican National Convention. Praise be to God.

Sex Toys

Approximately 11% of gun owners and 13% of handgun owners have ever used their firearms for protection from criminals. When they did actually use their second amendment right for protection, the criminal is wounded in about one out of ever 100 instances, and the criminal is killed in about one out of ever 1000 instances.

In the United States during 1997, people committed 15,289 murders. The perpetrators used a firearm in 10,369 of these instances.

Guns kill. People with guns kill. People are dying.

And yet the Alabama puts its time and effort into defending a 1998 state law banning the sale of sex toys. In a 2-1 decision, a three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the state has a right to police the sale of devices including electronic vibrators and other products meant to stimulate the sex organs.

Not only am I glad that I don't live in Alabama, this latest intrusion into the bedrooms of American citizens is troubling. I have commented before on the hypocrisy of conservatives. They can chip away the First Amendment, the Fourth Amendment, the Fifth Amendment, the Sixth Amendment, the Eighth Amendment, the Ninth Amendment -- and part of me believes they wouldn't mind a total repeal of the Eighth.

But don't you dare amend the Second Amendment. It's there, and everyone has to deal with it. Fine. I don't agree, but okay. But if you are going to be anal about the right to carry a deadly weapon, stay out of the bedroom, okay?

Don't tell me with whom I can have sex, and in which positions we can do it. Stay out, stay away. Don't tell me what I can or cannot buy, either. If I'm purchasing a semi-automatic, modified assault rifle for purposes unknown, then we'll talk. But if I just want to buy a piece of plastic with a motor in it for sexual gratification, which cannot hurt anyone, let alone kill, you can just suck it.

Guns are made for one purpose: to kill. Sex toys: to pleasure. Use some logic. Which would you assume -- without any preconceived notions -- would be illegal to buy?

God bless America.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Oh Yeah

It's official. I'm right -- well, correct. This is a little message from the other Zac at Kidney in a Cooler.


I think you have a winner in Barak Obama. And ill tell you why. My father is afraid of him.

And how.

Rich vs. Poor

Is it time to get rid of those blatantly hiding inside the pockets of big corporations YET?


The overall income Americans reported to the government shrank for two consecutive years after the Internet stock market bubble burst in 2000, the first time that has effectively happened since the modern tax system was introduced during World War II, newly disclosed information from the Internal Revenue Service shows.

And of course...


The median pay for a chief executive officer in the United States rose 15 percent in 2003 and was up 22 percent among top executives at larger companies.

This brings a stark realization to the old adage, "The rich get richer and the poor get poorer."

Low Road

John Edwards, accepting the Democratic Party's nomination for the Vice-Presidency, had this to say last night in his speech.


They are doing all they can to take the campaign for the highest office in the land down the lowest possible road.

Say it isn't so, John! Tell me the truth. Are they really that low? Would one of them really say something like this?


[John Kerry is] a French-speaking socialist from Boston, Massaschusetts, who is more liberal than Ted Kennedy.

Oh wait, I guess Trent Lott did say that.

Pastor Niemöller

I had a nice little debate with my preacher's wife yesterday (we work for the same company and see each other quite often) over gay-rights, among other things. I like and respect her and her husband very much, but they're very conservative concerning social issues. Her pro-life stance didn't surprise me much, but her pro-capital punishment threw me for a loop. I just didn't think religious figures would be for the death penalty. I don't know -- it was just odd.

But we argued the ideals of gay-rights, which she rejects is a "civil" right. She claims to have gay friends, but doesn't believe in protecting the lives of said sinners because they are not part of God's ultimate plan. I don't agree, obviously, but I don't dislike her for her views.

I made the point that blacks were unable to vote, unable to secure their faculties, unable to do much of anything not a hundred years ago. And people stood up for their rights, even if they didn't have to, because it was the right thing to do. People took an unpopular stand because they were morally obligated to help out an entire group of people who were being treated as second-rate. I said that this was the plight of the homosexuals in America.

She said that blacks get very angry over this assumption because, well... who knows?! They should know first-hand the injustice dealt to a minority by the over-bearing majority. This very thought really pissed me off. We're in this together, whether the conservative blacks like it or not.

Then later that night, last night, I listened as Al Sharpton gave a blazing speech on the failed policies of the Bush administration. A part that really struck me, and made me want to get off the chair and cheer, went like this.


You said the Republican Party was the party of Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. It is true that Mr. Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, after which there was a commitment to give 40 acres and a mule. That's where the argument, to this day, of reparations starts. We never got the 40 acres. We went all the way to Herbert Hoover, and we never got the 40 acres. We didn't get the mule. So we decided we'd ride this donkey as far as it would take us.

The Republican Party doesn't treat gays fairly. That's why I find Log Cabin Republicans the worst kind of Republicans -- not only are they philosophically inept, they are traitors to their people and sadists for living with the self-claiming enemy of gay rights.

But, I'm not bitter. It's their choice and it's a choice I can respect, though hate. What I cannot stand is Democrats who know that homosexuals are being treated unfairly. This doesn't piss many Democrats off even when the word "liberal" still contains hints of connotation that to this day remind people of socialism and -gasp- communism. The Republicans turned the word "liberal" into an insult. Damn it, I'm proud to be a liberal. Hell yes I'll do everything in my power to end world hunger, world suffering and world poverty. I believe in social justice and I believe that limited government begins with limiting governmental interference in the bedroom.

The Democratic party, for all the right it's done in life (and yes, wrong), is still portrayed as pandering, soft, and toothless. And yet, the greatest innovations of this century have come from Democratic, very liberal administrations.

It reminded me of something I once heard from a pastor during the time of the Holocaust. He said


First they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out –
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for the communists
And I did not speak out –
Because I was not a communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out –
Because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for me –

And there was no-one left

To speak out for me.

-Pastor Niemöller, 1938

The Republicans are coming for the gays, and you remain silent. They came and chipped away your first amendment rights, and you rumble a bit but ultimately remain silent. They attack you and call you a socialist, you shrug and remain silent.

Where does it end? And when will you finally speak up?

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

O-ba-ma

As promised, here is the transcript of Barack Obama's speech last night at the Democrat Convention. It's still awesome even without the energy that exuberated from him as he orated from that podium. Here is one of my favorite parts, and there are many.


The pundits, the pundits like to slice and dice our country into red states and blue states; red states for Republicans, blue states for Democrats. But I've got news for them, too. We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states.

We coach Little League in the blue states and have gay friends in the red states.

There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and patriots who supported it.

We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.

He's good.

And there's also Kennedy's speech, Dean's speech, Reagan's speech, and Teresa's speech.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Obama

I don't have it at the moment, but I am going to get all of you the transcript of Barack Obama's keynote speech at the Democratic Convention. Just wow.

To quote a very awesome guy, "If there's going to be a black president in the next two decades, it's going to be this guy." And I agree wholeheartedly, as I was thinking the exact same thing the entire speech!

Check him out. He's worth your time.

Ahoy

Oh! There's Colmes, from Hannity and Colmes. Who knew he existed?

Again?

Reuters is reporting that President Bush has taken yet another fall on his mountain bike. Say what? The first time got jokes and made four year olds who can ride a bicycle without training wheels shake their heads. But he's done it again.

"During an 18-mile ride, as bikers often do, the president took a minor spill and scraped his knee," spokeswoman Claire Buchan said.

"As bikers often do"? If I remember correctly, the Tour de France is 3429km in length. That's 212.6 miles, for you non-French. That's almost 12 times more than an 18-mile bike ride. Oy.

Speeches for Sneetches

Okay, so I'm still sleepy. But here are some things for you to read. And I highly suggest reading them. That is, of course, you didn't hear them being spoken last night at the Dem Convention.

Gore's speech.

Carter's speech.

Clinton's speech.

Monday, July 26, 2004

Well, Yeah

Tell me something I didn't know! Hello!

Grammar God!

You are a GRAMMAR GOD!

If your mission in life is not already to
preserve the English tongue, it should be.
Congratulations and thank you!

How grammatically sound are you?

Hannity, blah

I'm back, but exhausted. Damn six-hour train rides.

I did, however, get to watch some of the convention while lying cozily in my bed, and I was struck by something so incredibly awesome! I finally got satellite in my bedroom, so I'm able to watch many channels, often at the same time. I was moving back and forth between the news channels. Bill O'Reilly was on and as usual was taking the piss out of anybody who isn't Republican and conservative. He was reading the letters from his "viewers". One guy from California wrote in and said that he laughs at Fox News' insistence that they're moderate. Bill O'Lielly said, "Ya know, if you don't cite proof, you're bilge B-I-L-G-E." He actually spelled out bilge. What an idiot.

Anyway, I thought, you know what, you're right. Where would I ever find proof of Fox News's right-ward slant. Other than Bill's a registered Republican, you mean?

Well, at about nine o'clock this evening EST, former President Jimmy Carter gave a wonderful speech, cracking the whip at the Democratic base and getting everyone stirred up. (As if Gore didn't do that already with his awesom speech.) Anyway, Carter's doing a wonderful job and I turn the channel to Fox News.

And what should I find? Oh yeah! Sean Hannity (no Colmes, but big surprise) is at the convention (how the hell did he get in?!) and he's talking to Bill Bennett about the best reason to hate Kerry. This is the Democratic Convention! A former president is speaking. Sean Hannity is there in the building. Let's talk about how much Kerry sucks!

What a partisan hack. And his little show too. Myeah.

Friday, July 23, 2004

Va-ca-tion

I am currently on vacation, or what most people would consider just an over-extended weekend. I am currently in the great city of Philadelphia, living it up with dirty streets, unfriendly people, and expensive restaurants. And I'm loving every freaking minute of it. I'm visiting a friend of mine from college who lives here in the city. I will be here from Thursday (yesterday) to Monday morning.

He was called into work today (yuck) so I'm using my trusty, handy-dandy city map and exploring as much of the city as possible. I've semi-mastered the subway/trolley modes of transportation so far. It's called SEPTA, as opposed to the Metro in DC. I refer to it as SEPTIC, which makes me think of TOXIC, which makes me think of the Britney Spears' song, which I've been humming every time I'm travelling from one part of the city to the other.

I bet people want to hurt me bad.

I have been blissfully away from the news since Wednesday afternoon, so I'm not entirely sure what's going on. I did, however, see in the Yahoo! news briefing thingy that Bush is encouraging blacks not to vote Democrat. I'm going to read that quick here while I'm sitting in Philadelphia's Free Public Library (which is multiple-times-over bigger than the courthouse in my hometown -- and that's the COUNTY courthouse!) and see if I have anything to add to the discourse.

If not, fear not. I will be back on Monday, and probably have something to post that evening. As for now, I'm going to use up the rest of my 52 minutes and counting on the internet and then head to the Rembrandt museum and then to Rodin. Hellz yeah! (That would be a shout-out to Ian.)

Keep it real, & liberal,

Zachary

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Making Me a Fighter

After the Clinton reign in the White House, many Democrats, among Republicans, were tired of Democratic politics and started to look for alternatives. They searched for a candidate in the next election who didn't have any ties to Clinton and who would restore integrity and honor to the Oval Office.

Unfortunately, many democrats skipped over Gore and voted for either Nader or -gasp- Bush. This is a travesty, but I can't blame them. They thought Nader was fun and Bush was a uniter, not a divider. Oh, how they were wrong.

So now in 2004, right before the next election, I can imagine that many Democrats who voted for Bush in 2000 have been kicking themselves in the arse these four years and wish they had voted for Gore. What's done is done.

As many of you know, I have a 15 year old sister. While driving in my car yesterday, I let her pick the music and she popped in a CD and immediately skipped to one song in particular. Though I just usually roll my eyes at her music tastes, I listened to the song and a thought struck me.

How perfect is this song for those Democrats burned by Bush?

On that note, I give you "Fighter" by Christina Aguilera, in G Major.


After all you put me through
You'd think I'd despise you
But in the end / I wanna thank you
Cause you made me that much stronger

Well I / Thought I knew you
Thinkin / That you were true
Guess I / I couldn't trust called your bluff time is up
Cause I've had enough
You were there by my side, / Always down for the ride
But your joy ride just came down in flames
Cause your greed sold me out in shame

After all of the stealing and cheating
You probably think that I hold resentment for you
But uh uh, oh no, you're wrong
Cause if it wasn't for all that you tried to do
I wouldn't know just how capable
I am to pull through / So I wanna say thank you
Cause it

Chorus:
Makes me that much stronger
Makes me work a little bit harder
It makes me that much wiser
So thanks for making me a fighter
Made me learn a little bit faster
Made my skin a little bit thicker
Makes me that much smarter
So thanks for makin me a fighter

Never saw it coming / All of your backstabbing
Just so you could cash in on a good thing before I'd realize your game
I heard you're goin around playin / The victim now
But don't even begin feeling I'm the one to blame
Cause you dug your own grave
After all of the fights and the lies cause you're wanting to haunt me
But that won't work anymore, no more / It's over
Cause if it wasn't for all of your torture
I wouldn't know how to be this way now and never back down
So I wanna say thank you
Cause it

Chorus

How could this man I thought I knew
Turn out to be unjust so cruel
Could only see the good in you
Pretended not to know the truth
You tried to hide your lies, disguise yourself
Through living in denial
But in the end you'll see
YOU-WON'T-STOP-ME

I am a fighter and I
I ain't gonna stop
There is no turning back
I've had enough

Thanks, Mr. Bush. You are a uniter. You helped unite the Democratic Party like nothing has in years. Thank you.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Patty Cakes, Revisited

A few posts ago I was musing over the allegations by Pat Robertson that the First Amendment only limits the Federal government. The states, he claims, are able to do whatever they please as long as it doesn't clash with their individual constitution. I wasn't sure how this was bunk, even though everything in my being was hoping it was.

Well, quite accidently, I found out the answer. Or, at least, what could be the answer. The 14th Amendment. The first clause says


All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

I'm a citizen of Pennsylvania, but more importantly I'm a citizen of the United States. I think this amendment, ratified in 1868, is a sneaky way of making sure that federal law one-ups state law. It's a federal crime to drive a vehicle without headlights at night. A state cannot make a law saying that a driver can do whatever he wants with his headlights.

Likewise, I'm immune from prosecution for writing against the government because of the freedom of the press -- because I'm a citizen of the United States.

I'm immune from prosecution for protesting peacefully -- because I'm a citizen of the United States.

And, more importantly -- at least in this post --, Congress (all Congresses) are barred from establishing a national / state religion.

Pat Robertson used the instance that some states had established statewide official religions at the time of the ratification of the Constitution. But that was almost 100 years prior to the 14th Amendment. And this new take on federal law cannot be deemed unconstitutional because it is, well, part of the Constitution.

And so, there ya go, Patty Cakes. You're wrong, I'm right, end of story.

Who the...?



To quote Monty Python & the Holy Grail: "Run away! Run away!"

Another Reagan

Okay, so Ron doesn't like Bush. But now it's pretty apparent that neither does his sister, Patti.


President Bush, on the other hand, says that he loves this country and, giving him the benefit of the doubt, I assume he does love his conceptualized idea of America. But I don’t think he loves us -- the people who make up this land. The huddled masses. The millions of citizens who just want a peaceful, safe life. Those who want to put their kids through school and see them grow up; who want to take vacations to other countries without fearing for their lives because so much of the world hates us.

I don’t think you lie to people you love. I don’t think you send them off into dangerous situations on the basis of murky, cobbled-together information that isn’t really information at all. I don’t think you keep them scared all the time. I don’t think you respond to horrors like public beheadings with cowboy slogans that sound like they came from old John Wayne movies. And I think if someone masterminds an attack on people you love and murders thousands of them, you go after that person until you find him. Osama bin Laden is six feet, eight inches tall, he wears white robes and he reportedly suffers from kidney failure, requiring him to be on dialysis. I haven’t researched this, but I assume there aren’t many dialysis machines in Afghanistan. So wouldn’t it make sense to stake out the ones that are there? He could have a portable one, which would require a generator. That should make him easy to spot, too.

What are the chances their mother will come around to the Dems, if only because of stem cell research. Isn't it a little showing that the Republican party worships Reagan and Reagan's own children despise the latest incarnation of Conservative Thought? This party is not the party of Reagan. And even that party wasn't anything to hoot and holler about.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Human Rights

Well this is interesting. But, as I've been lately, I'm a little confused.


The House voted Monday to restrict U.S. aid to Vietnam if that country fails to improve what lawmakers said was a deplorable human rights record.

"Vietnam needs to come out of the dark ages of repression, brutality and abuse and embrace freedom, the rule of law and respect for fundamental human rights," said Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., sponsor of the legislation that passed 323-45.

So Vietnam "needs to come out of the dark ages", eh? What about Saudi Arabia? Amnesty Int'l's report on the country is as follows


Gross human rights violations continued and were exacerbated by government "anti-terrorism" policies and acts of violence, some of which the authorities blamed on al-Qa'ida sympathizers. Hundreds of suspected religious activists, critics of the state and protesters were arrested or detained following their forcible return from other countries, and the legal status of those held from previous years remained shrouded in secrecy. Women played an unprecedented role in challenging discrimination against women, which nevertheless continued to be endemic. Torture and ill-treatment remained rife. At least 50 people were executed. Over a dozen foreign nationals were forcibly handed over to their governments. Around 3,500 Iraqi refugees remained as virtual prisoners in Rafha camp. The government continued to deny AI access to the country.

What about China? Amnesty Int'l's report on the country is as follows


Despite a few positive steps, no attempt was made to introduce the fundamental legal and institutional reforms necessary to bring an end to serious human rights violations. Tens of thousands of people continued to be detained or imprisoned in violation of their rights to freedom of expression and association, and were at serious risk of torture or ill-treatment. Thousands of people were sentenced to death or executed. Restrictions increased on the cultural and religious rights of the mainly Muslim Uighur community in Xinjiang, where thousands of people have been detained or imprisoned for so-called "separatist" or "terrorist" offences. In Tibet and other ethnic Tibetan areas, freedom of expression and religion continued to be severely restricted. China continued to use the international "war against terrorism" as a pretext for cracking down on peaceful dissent.

What about the United States? In this time in our history, who are we to judge those who torture? Who are we to judge those who limit civil liberties for one reason or another?

I commend this country for taking a stand. Repression, brutality and abuse should never happen anywhere in the world. And I'm proud that this country is taking a step to ensure such civility. But the irony of the empty fist to the Saudis and to China, both human rights violators, is not lost on me.

Where are their sanctions? Where is their day in the limelight?

Again?

Dammit. And I thought that the whole NASCAR Dad thing was just a passing craze.


President Bush saluted Indianapolis 500 winner Buddy Rice on Monday, the first time he has invited an Indy champ to the White House. In his latest election-year appeal to the racing crowd, Bush posed with the red, white and blue car on the South Lawn, holding Rice's helmet and caressing the car.

"Caressing the car"? Is he not getting any during this re-election stretch? Could be like when athletes don't have sex or otherwise get themselves to that point during training and right before a big challenge in order to keep the testosterone flowing.

"Caressing the car"... There's an image I never want to have again.

News Release

Hmm. During my research for the last post, I came across a news release (of sorts) from the Westboro Baptist Church -- the church of Jerry Falwell (*CORRECTION* It's not Jerry Falwell's church, it's Fred Phelps's. Sorry for the confusion). Anyway, it's disgusting.

But as I'm reading through it, I notice that this church is in week 681 of protests against "public sodomy" (People actually have bum sex in public? Why stop with public sodomy if you're so against it? I don't understand!) at Gage Park.

The news release says


We're determined the nation shall hear God's command: "Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression." Isa. 58:1. "Show" = get in their faces; make it crystal clear. America's sin is that of Sodom: societal acceptance / respect for soul-damning, nation-dooming "gay" lifestyle. America is "deeply (irreversibly) corrupt".

I want to make a few points, but let's start easy. America's only sin is not that of Sodom, though I must agree that the sin of Sodom is also that of America. But it's not the sin these Bible-thumpers believe it to be. I've written before, and post here once again,


the prophet Ezekiel quotes God as saying in Ezekiel 16:48-49: "As I love, says the Lord God... This was the sin of your sister city Sodom: she and her suburbs had pride, excess of food, and prosperous case, but did not help or encourage the poor and needy. They were arrogant and this was abominable in my eyes." Not a single mention of homosexuality or homosexual intercourse. An almost exact story of Sodom can be found in Judges 19:22 with the same results. Destruction due to injustice and lack of hospitality, not homosexuality.

Yes, America has pride, excess of food (though we don't share it very well), and we don't want to seem like pinko socialists so we don't help or encourage the poor and the needy very well either. America is America, good or bad. But its destruction is not at the hands of homosexuals -- if anything, it's at the hands of the homophobes who point left when the trouble is coming from the right. (No pun intended, I assure you.)

And why is the "soul-damning, nation-dooming "gay" lifestyle" the only one being protested? I'd say murder is pretty soul-damning. And unemployment is pretty nation-dooming. Where's their protests on that? Wouldn't the world be better off if the Westboro Church called off the protest of the Teletubbies for having a "gay" character and put those resources into, oh I don't know, a food drive to feed hungry Americans?

I don't like to call attention to other sins when one sin is being attacked, but what about single-parenthood, crack-babies, domestic abuse, near-crippling poverty, worldwide-genocide, uninsured children or malnourished children? These are all sins, let's not kid ourselves. When one child cannot visit a doctor to get a medication otherwise readily available to a child of a richer family, for fear of a medical bill, that's a sin. Why don't these compassionate conservatives grow a set, and show some compassion to those who need it?

The news release tells its readers to "get in their face" with the Gospel truth. But their truth is wrong. It's not a matter of faith -- it's a matter of actually reading the Bible passages they use. They want to wake Americans up from this haze the Homosexual Agenda has poured over them. But what if the tables are really turned the other way around?

What if there is... an Anti-Homosexual Agenda. It's seeping itself through our communities, into our school systems, across out country from every dark nook and crany in the nation. They wish to turn our nation onto itself and divide us from within. We must stop them in their tracks and tell them, "No! I will not stand for your lifestyle of hate and belittlement. I am an American and I believe in the Constitution when it calls for freedom from persecution. Stay away from me and my family." They will not stop until every politition, every educator, every religious figure is on their side. And so we must not stop either.

Food for Thought

I got this in an email forward and I thought it was too funny (and true!) to pass up. Enjoy -- I know I did.


And of course I had to add a few links to aid in your insatiable appetite for knowledge. Please, check out the links because I spent the better part of half an hour putting them together! Oy.

Last Night

Allow me, if you will, a little personal story about my night last night. In my hometown, there's this block party that goes on every year on the same weekend in July. Other than good food, and semi-enjoyable music, the main reason for the get-together is the alcohol which runs pretty freely. Everyone in the community you know and wished not to see comes up to you and treats you like you were once best friends and shares his or her experience over the last year.

I hate it.

I've always hated this part of July. And at the end of the festivities, I always vow never to return. That never lasts long because friends drag me (sometimes literally, as was the case this year) and I take it like a man. Unlike one of those "girlie men" Arnold Schwarzenegger is calling members of the California legislature (both misogynistic and homophobic, nice!).

So I'm there last night, not having an entirely great time, when I overhear two 10 year olds talking at the nearby table. I know that they're 10 because I know one of their mothers. I don't usually eavesdrop because I'm afraid what people would think of me upon hearing some of my conversations with friends, but what I initially heard intrigued me.

The boy asked the girl, "Why'd you break up with him? You were perfect together. I thought you were going to get married." Married? Break up? They're ten! I couldn't help but chuckle to myself because that's freaking funny. Ten year olds worrying about relationships. They haven't even hit puberty yet!

So as I'm getting my kicks from this conversation, the highlight of my night came upon me. The band playing on the center stage, a 70s-ish band comprised of over-the-hill, yet surprisingly good, rockers, started to play Bobby McGee by Janis Joplin. Okay, I thought, this was about as good as the night was going to get.

I bid my friends farewell shortly after the conclusion of the song and started walking the three-blocks back to my car. And there as I'm nearing the second block, a car drove up beside me and I was called a faggot.

This town is pretty darn Republican, but I wouldn't say as conservative as many would think. So this instance of banter kind of shook me because it was incredibly unexpected. I haven't been called that in years, at least two or three, and that was in college by a drunken football player, to which a drunken me replied "You know you want this." He laughed and tried to apologize. So while my experience with stupid people abounds, I'm not quite used to actual confrontations.

I never saw who the guy from the passenger seat was, nor why they even thought I was gay. Doesn't matter.

I got home safe and sound to my house in the middle of freaking nowhere and emailed this one awesome blogger I had just found earlier that day to tell him that I thought his blog was awesome. We started an email conversation and then my sister called crying because she had hit a deer about two miles from the house. So I packed up and shipped out to save her, which really turned out to be me telling her to slow down and get in her car and drive. Then for the rest of the evening I talked to said blogger and found my doppelganger. No, get your mind out of the gutter, I found that a long time ago. It's someone who's you, but isn't you. (Thank you Dr. Hochberg, The Secret Sharer!)

And that was my evening.

Who said you can't have fun in small-town America? Oh, that was me.

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Patty Cakes

I talked about Jerry Falwell a couple posts ago, and now I'd like to bring Pat Robertson in the mix. Yes, that Pat Robertson. The Pat Robertson whose fat face is on the television every time I channel surf. Oh well.

Anyhoo, I came across something he said and I can't quite shake it from my head. He mentioned that in the Constitution, the federal government is unable to "establish" a national religion, but the individual states can. Because I just happened to have the Constitution handy, I looked up the First Amendment.

The part he's talking about states:


Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion...

Interesting. Congress is definitely a federal government type of entity. And the writers of this document were most certainly thinking about Congress in the federal sense. So what about state congresses? Can the State of Pennsylvania (or shall I say Commonwealth) make a law respecting an establishment of religion? If not, why not?

As much as I'm against state-mandated/run religiosity, I'm confused and befuddled. I don't know the answer. I'm hoping one of you can help me out.

But, if we were to read this new take on an old idea, why stop with religion?


Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

This would mean that the rights to the freedom of exercise of whatever religion I chose, the freedom of my free speech and the press, the freedom to peaceably assemble, and the freedom to petition the Government for a redress of grievances is only guaranteed as long as I'm standing within federally owned lands.

I can assemble peacefully in the post office, Washington DC, a national park, a federal building or a military base. But as soon as I step off such land, I'm not longer Constitutionally guaranteed such rights.

Why has this not come up before? Or if it has, why don't I know the answer. Ugh. Help me!

NYC Protest

Okay, as I understand it, the GOP Convention is going to be in New York City next month. And, of course, there will be what planners hope are upwards of hundreds of thousands of protesters. According to ABC News, there will also be a handful (a few hundred, if that) of young conservatives protesting the protesters.

Very groovy idear, eh? But I got to thinking as I was reading this article. I like New York City. I'm definitely not conservative. And I'm young. Why not get a bunch of people to counter these young conservatives?

So that's that.

I want to protest the protesters protesting the protesters of the GOP Convention in New York City. We can use the acronym PPPPo'GOP. It's just a thought. Let me know if you're interested!

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Duh!

Ashcroft



"Hmm, he said he'd call me. Why won't he call? Is it me? I gave him my number."

First Amendment

Jerry Falwell -- sigh -- is an idiot. As Al Franken would say, a big, fat idiot. But anway, he's now the subject of a complaint to the IRS for overstepping his religious boundaries and speaking specifically for a political candidate, which is a big no-no when you also want to keep your tax-exempt status. He wrote in an email and on his website


For conservative people of faith, voting for principle this year means voting for the re-election of George W. Bush. The alternative, in my mind, is simply unthinkable. To the pro-life, pro-family, pro-traditional marriage, pro-America voters in this nation, we must determine that President Bush is the man with our interests at heart. It is that simple.

Yeah, I'd say that he definitely is guilty as charged. But he does a little quick maneuvering.


Mr. Falwell said that an affiliated tax-exempt lobbying organization, not his religious organization, Jerry Falwell Ministries, had paid for the e-mail message and the Web site. Mr. Falwell also argued that his comments constituted only his personal view, and not an endorsement by his lobbying organization, Liberty Alliance.

Fine, fine, fine. Whatever. He's an idiot and I could care less, but something he said really struck me. He said


...all of which is protected by the First Amendment.

The beginning part of that sentence and paragraph aren't important right now. It's the freaking fact that he had the gall to bring up the First Amendment.

His type of people (you know the kind -- ultraconservative and ugly) just love a book burning. And why's that? What happened to the author's First Amendment right to write anything he wanted, even if it did disagree with Falwll's mantra?

Take for instance this church, which wanted to burn books for, well, the sake of burning books. Too bad they weren't allowed due to city ordinances.

It's just annoying in the least. And downright heinous in the most.

Friday, July 16, 2004

Un-Republican

John McCain on Wednesday called the proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages "un-Republican."


The constitutional amendment we're debating today strikes me as antithetical in every way to the core philosophy of Republicans," McCain said. "It usurps from the states a fundamental authority they have always possessed and imposes a federal remedy for a problem that most states do not believe confronts them.

...

McCain also said the amendment "will not be adopted by Congress this year, nor next year, nor any time soon until a substantial majority of Americans are persuaded that such a consequential action is as vitally important and necessary as the proponents feel it is today."

"The founders wisely made certain that the Constitution is difficult to amend and, as a practical political matter, can't be done without overwhelming public approval. And thank God for that," he said.

Finally, someone in the mainstream comments on this blaring hyporisy within the party. Republicans used to hate Big-Government and federal incroachment on states' rights. That is until they realize how easily they could use such a means to scare its citizens and strip them of civil liberties (see: Patriot Act). Just as Republicans used to be for fiscal-conservation.

But it is nice to see that they still don't give a rat's ass about minorities (here's another, and another) or the environment (here's another, and another)! God Bless the Republicans!

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Nugent

Thanks to Steve M. for the heads up. This is almost too crazy to believe. WKMJ, Central Florida, is reporting that


But another name surfacing is that of rocker, outspoken conservative and gun rights activist Ted Nugent.

"He grew up in Arlington Heights. He went to St. Viator High School," said Cook County Republican Chair Gary Skoien. "He has more connection to Illinois than Hillary Clinton had to New York, and he's been a very articulate spokesperson on constitutional issues. He would be a very interesting candidate."

"A very articulate spokesperson," eh? Huh. Let's see here. He's the one who said


Foreigners are assholes; foreigners are scum; I don't like 'em; I don't want 'em in this country; I don't want 'em selling me doughnuts; I don't want 'em pumping my gas; I don't want 'em downwind of my life -- OK?

...

You probably can't use the term 'toxic cunt' in your magazine, but that's what [Hillary Clinton] is.

...

All men are not created equal.

...

Yeah, we want to go to Saudi Arabia, man, and see if we can't get a four iron and knock people's laundry off the top of their heads. Wear laundry on your head and die, is the basic theme of the Damn Yankees.

...

He claims that 30 days before his draft board physical, he stopped all forms of personal hygiene. The last 10 days, he ingested nothing but Vienna sausages and Pepsi; and a week before his physical, he stopped using bathrooms altogether, virtually living inside pants caked with his own excrement, stained by his urine. That spectacle won Nugent a deferment, he says. "... but if I would have gone over there, I'd have been killed, or I'd have killed, or I'd killed all the hippies in the foxholes...I would have killed everybody."

Oh, please, please, please, please, please let him be the GOP's pick for Senate. Oh my God, can you imagine? Obama would have an easier cakewalk than he does already! I'm sure Nugent'd be the perfect GOP candidate for Illinois. It would show that compassionate side Republicans are so looking for. "Toxic cunt" -- seems almost... articulate.

What the...?

Blogger changed its layout and it sucks. I hate you, blogger.

Blame Game

How utterly disgusting. The White House blames the CIA for bad intelligence, which led to the war in Iraq. The CIA's acting intelligence chief blames the White House. This is all pretty amusing until I realize that we're still in Iraq and soldiers are still dying.

So it's the blame game, and everyone's invited. Only, I found this little tidbit that just made my day.

According to the Republican Party's platform for the 2000 election:


...sheer sloppiness at the highest levels of government. This must stop, immediately. Nor should the intelligence community be made the scapegoat for political misjudgments.

What... the... Hell? I mean really. What a bunch of hypocritical, bedroom-obessesed, war-mongering, dunces!

Ditka

I don't care whether some judge of the Massachusetts Supreme Court says it's right. It's not right. It's wrong.

--Former potential Republican Senate candidate Mike Ditka. Thank God he's not running, not that he would've won anyway. His would-be opponent had a 24% lead over the other guy, before he dropped out.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Dear Heavens

Check out Attaturk's take on Ditka running for the Senate.

Annan

We hear a lot about weapons of mass destruction, we hear a lot about terrorism. And we are worried about weapons of mass destruction because of the potential to kill thousands. Here we have an epidemic that is killing millions. What is the response?

--U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, speaking of AIDS

Celebrate

Ce-lebrate good times, come on! It's a celebration.

Actually, it's nothing that anybody ever saw coming, but it's still pretty cool. The Federal Marriage Amendment (you know, the only amendment to the Constitution that would ADD discrimination to the document) is doomed for failure.

But it's rather bittersweet. The Senate needs a procedural vote of 60 to get the proposed piece of legislation even up for a straight up and down vote. That's where the sticking point is. The GOP, and some "Democrats", can't get 60 senators to vote on the resolution to vote for the legislation.


"You've got to put senators out there and get a vote total, and then people will say, 'Hey, we disagree,"' explained Sen. Sam Brownback, a Kansas Republican and a leading backer of the measure. "People will react."

I feel, as many in the GOP are feeling, like some senators are afraid to voice their true feelings over the issue. The majority of Americans are wrong, er, I mean they are opposed to same-sex marriages, but the majority of them are opposed to a federal amendment to the Constitution. So some senators are torn between appeasing the anti-gay-marriagers and the anti-gay-marriage-amendmenters. You have to seem like you're doing something, but not too much.

If it never comes to a real vote, the GOP can bring it up again next year.

In any case, the measure will most likely fail anyway -- even then too. And... oh yeah, Bush's legislative agenda is for the birds.

A Little Tally

I know, I know, celebrities are blah. But they are kinda fun to watch and see mess up from time to time. Anyhoo, as I was sitting here reading the news and chatting with friends, I thought about keeping a tally of the celebrities who came out to support Kerry and those (are there any??) who came out to support Bush.

Right, I know, celebrities suck. But this is kinda fun. I'm going to keep the tally on the right hand of the site. If you know of any that I missed, tell me! Thanks.

Amen

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Fly, Fly, Fly

I'd love to be a fly on their bedroom wall!


Lynne Cheney, the vice president's wife and mother of a lesbian, said Sunday that states should have the final say over the legal status of personal relationships.

That stand puts her at odds with the vice president on the need for the constitutional amendment now under debate in the Senate that effectively would ban gay marriage.

Stick it to 'em, Lynne.

Ron Reagan

Interesting.


In a move sure to embarrass Republicans, Ron Reagan will address the Democratic National Convention this month.

Reagan, son of former President Ronald Reagan and an outspoken critic of the Bush administration, will be at the podium on the second night of the four-day event in Boston, July 27, in support of stem-cell research, he said Sunday in an interview here.

...

A registered independent who has long been an outspoken political liberal, Reagan said he would not campaign for Kerry or any other candidate. He said he would vote for Kerry, however, "as a way to defeat Bush."

Reagan, 46, said he also did not vote for Bush in 2000, despite the fact that Bush's father, George H.W. Bush, was vice president during Ronald Reagan's two terms in the White House.

President Bush "has made some terrible mistakes," most notably, attacking Iraq, Reagan said.

Stick it to 'em, Ronnie.

I'm Lacking

According to the Council of Conservative Citizens,


The 1989 Consumer Reports Medicine Book reported that the average homosexual male would have 1200 different sexual partners during his lifetime.

Damn! I don't even know 200 gay guys. Sheesh.

More on the Council to follow.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

And Now...

In response to being denied the chance to hear Bush speak at their convention, the NAACP is asking him to reconsider.


Kweisi Mfume, president of the NAACP, said it was "unbelievable" that Bush had declined an invitation to speak at the organization's annual meeting for the fourth consecutive year.

"When you are president, you are elected to be president of all the people," Mfume said at a news conference as the convention opened. "You won't do that if you refuse to talk."

He asked Bush to change his mind and promised that the Republican president would be treated with respect at the Philadelphia event this week even if many delegates oppose his politics.

Sigh. What is Bush's real reason for not speaking at the convention? Bush said his relationship with its leadership was "basically nonexistent" and he referred to being called "names" by organization members.

He was called names, eh? Is this junior high?

To be fair, the NAACP Chairman said that Bush and other Republicans were part of a "dark underside of American culture." Hardly nothing compared to what some people say about them every day.

I Did Once

And I used to think Dennis Miller was funny. Emphasis on the used to.

From the July 8 edition of CNBC's Dennis Miller:


MILLER: If convicted, Lay could be sentenced to several years in prison, or, if true justice prevails, forced to pay an inflated price for his own electrocution. ... [Miller played a video clip of Lay with hands cuffed behind his back] Better keep those hands right there for the next 20 years, Kenny, cause "Mr. Lay" is about to become your nickname. And a, uh, yeah, listen. I'm not usually pro-sodomizing anybody against their will, but when you stole people's 401(k)s, that's exactly what you deserve.

Such witty, intelligent class. God loves Dennis Miller, I can tell.

Living In Sin With a Safety Pin

I don't quite know what to make of this news article, as I'm at a loss for words. Here it is.


A former dispatcher for the Pender County Sheriff's Department said her bosses forced her to choose between her job and her live-in boyfriend. Debora Hobbs picked her boyfriend of 12 years, but said it isn't a decision she should have had to make.

Sheriff Carson Smith declined to specifically discuss the matter, but says he holds his employees to a high standard. North Carolina law prohibits unmarried, unrelated adults of the opposite sex from living together.

"It is a violation of general statute and it goes against something that I believe is a moral issue," Smith said. "Personally and morally, I think it's best to be married if you're going to be living together."

Smith said he tries to avoid hiring people who openly live together. He doesn't send out deputies to enforce the law, either.

"My first issue is they're going to make me live by a law they don't even enforce," Hobbs said. "They see it every day."

Hobbs said she understands Smith's stance, but she wants the law changed. Smith said he didn't know if changing the law would change his policy. "There are certainly a lot of things that I think are wrong that aren't against the law," he said.

What kind of time warp is this? Has anyone ever heard of such a law? I'm not even sure where I can go about verifying such a law.

Just wow.

I Forgot

I had wanted to touch upon this a few days ago, but alas, I forgot. Oh, please forgive me. It's nothing tooooo important, just fun. And kinda shows exactly how scared Bush is of his relationship with Ken Lay, indicted former CEO of Enron.


A clearly-rattled President George W. Bush walked out of a media briefing Thursday, refusing to answer questions about his close relationship with indicted Enron executive Kenneth Lay, a campaign benefactor Bush nicknamed "Kenny Boy" when the two were up-and-comers in Texas.

The President, visibly upset, stomped off the stage when reporters pressed him about his relationship with Lay and left White House press secretary Scott McClellan to deal with the questions.

In case you wanted a visual:



He looks so sad.

Quien es tu papa?



Whooooooooooooooo's your daddy?

Vote Tampering, Part Two, Revisited

As if my job is ever truly finished. It would now seem that Florida elections officials will not use a list of people believed to be convicted felons to purge voter rolls, acknowledging a flaw that left off some Hispanics.

I wrote about this here, just a few hours ago, nonetheless.

Anyway, "Nevertheless, Supervisors of Elections are required to uphold their constitutional obligation" and will find other ways to ensure felons are removed from the rolls, Secretary of State Glenda Hood said in a statement.

Caught red-handed, and now they're backtracking. Keep them on their toes!

Vote Tampering, Revisited

I neglected to fully appreciate what was going on with the Patriot Act vote in the House -- in my previous post--, instead being angry with the Republicans for the crony tactics used.

The vote was originally 219-201, a yay vote would've put a halt to allowing the FBI to monitor people's reading, e-mail and Internet habits at public libraries. And even though the ending vote was 210-210, look at this vote.

The Patriot Act, in all of its anti-Bill of Rights gloriousness, is a centerpiece of the administration's war on terrorism, and the vote came as the administration was issuing vague but dire warnings about renewed terrorist threats. Is this the House's way of thumbing their noses at the administration? This would've been the first time Congress attempted to reign in Attorney Genereal John Ashcroft, and it almost passed. Even though it did not, it's still a clear victory in some sense that this Congress is no longer the lap-puppy to the administration.

The White House had threatened to veto the entire bill if the ban were a part of it. That's a pretty heavy-duty threat, to save a provision that Ashcroft insists has never been used. Obviously, he's lying. Or did he just like knowing he had that power if he ever wanted to use it?

And this isn't the first time that Congress has started this bucking of the lap-dog role. The Senate has said it will stand pat on its $318 billion transportation bill even though the White House says President Bush will veto the measure if it's over $256 billion.

The House, meanwhile, voted 221-194 to overturn new restrictions Bush had imposed on gift parcels to Cuba, limiting their number, contents and who could receive them. Congress has already, by steadily widening margins, tried several times to repeal Bush's tightened ban on travel to Cuba.

Good for you, Congress. At least you're doing something constructive. Now let's talk about the FMA.

Inexperience

I'm tired of hearing about John Edwards' inexperience. He is experienced, and he would do a marvelous job as vice-president. But I'm so sick and tired of hearing Bush and Cheney try to make him out as some 20-something whipper-snapper. Let's put this to rest here and now.

John Edwards is 53 years old. He served in Congress for 5.5 years. He comes from humble roots, and used his hard-work and determination to become a very successful trial lawer -- one who looked out for the little man from corporate greed and corruption.

Abraham Lincoln was 51 years old when he was elected president. He was 52 when he took the oath of office. Prior to this, he had served in the US Congress for a total of 2 years. He also came from humble roots, and used his hard-work and determination to become a successful trial lawyer -- one who looked out for the poor farmers of the midwest and championed their causes.

And Lincoln was elected President. Edwards is just running for the vice-presidency. I'd say he's more than qualified.

If you're still not convinced, let's look at how well Bush was/is qualified to be president.

Bush ran for congress and lost. He produced a Hollywood slasher B movie. He bought an oil company and the it went bankrupt shortly after he sold of his stock. He bought the Texas Rangers baseball team, and soon traded Sammy Sosa to the Chicago White Sox. And that leads us right up to his governorship of Texas.

Pretty exciting, eh?

Well yeah, but that's not the clincher. In Texas, the Lt. Governor actually has more power, and is seen as more important, than the Governor.


In the state of Texas, the lieutenant governor chairs the state senate and by convention and legislative rule, the lieutenant governor has a great deal of influence on the management and passage of legislation. This power and the fact that the lieutenant governor is elected separately from the governor and the fact that much of the executive power of the state government is in elected executive officials and boards rather than in the hands of the governor cause some to consider the lieutenant governor to be more powerful than the governor. This results in the ironic situation that when a lieutenant governor of Texas becomes governor, he or she gains a fancier title, but loses power.

So exactly what made Bush all that qualified to become President? And who is he trying to fool when he mocks Edwards' inexperience? What foriegn policy did he master as Governor of Texas -- other than keeping out those Mexicans? Edwards had five and a half years in the Senate working on foreign policy, domestic policy, everything.

And what about Cheney? He was deferred from Vietnam five times, and yet feels no shame sending other people to fight a war this country didn't need. That's not a vice-president I want.

Kerry/Edwards, 2004

Vote Tampering, Part Two

The more I think about it, the more I believe that Republicans are evil. Just don't tell my actual Republican friends I made this comment. But really, they want to win so badly, they don't care how foolish they look in the meantime.


Florida election officials used a flawed method to come up with a listing of people believed to be convicted felons, a list that they are recommending be used to purge voter registration rolls, state officials acknowledged yesterday. As a result, voters identifying themselves as Hispanic are almost completely absent from that list.

Of nearly 48,000 Florida residents on the felon list, only 61 are Hispanic. By contrast, more than 22,000 are African-American.

About 8 percent of Florida voters describe themselves as Hispanic, and about 11 percent as black.

In a presidential-election battleground state that decided the 2000 race by giving George W. Bush a margin of only 537 votes, the effect could be significant: black voters are overwhelmingly Democratic, while Hispanics in Florida tend to vote Republican.

And who's the governor of Florida? Oh, that's right -- Bush's brother. Not only is this the hotly contested state that delivered Gore to the White House (to be overturned by the Supreme Court, who delivered Bush to the White House), it's the president's brother who's in charge!

Only 537 votes in Florida decided the election. 22,000 blacks are now unable to vote because of a law in Florida not allowing felons the right to vote. What about the rest of the Republican-siding Hispanics? In all of Florida, only 60 Hispanics are felons? I'm sorry, but I do not think so. I'll be the first to admit that my fellow whities are just as bad (if not more prevalent) than the minorites, but come on! 60?!

As if.

Vote Tampering

In the House, a vote on the Patriotic Act was, oh, shall we say, tampered with by Republicans. This bill would've put a halt to allowing the FBI to monitor people's reading, e-mail and Internet habits at public libraries. There was a winning 219-201 margin to pass the bill by the end of the 15-minute scheduled time limit. However, the Republican-controlled House allowed the voting to continue for another 23 minutes, as Democrats chanted "shame, shame'' and Tom DeLay promptly pressured several members to switch their votes. In the end, the final vote count was 210-210.

As one member said, "You win some, and some get stolen." Rep. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, sponsor of the bill, said "I resent on behalf of the American people that the Republican leadership rigged the game. At the end of 15 minutes, we won, and it wasn't even close."

Why is this not newsworthy and not on NBC, ABC, and CBS nightly news? These are dirty tricks done by dirty, dirty people. Where's the investigation into wrongdoing?

Twelve Reasons

Twelve Reasons Why Same-Sex Marriage Will Ruin Society
Via GatorGSA

1. Homosexuality is not natural, much like eyeglasses, polyester, and birth control are not natural.

2. Heterosexual marriages are valid becasue they produce children. Infertile couples and old people can't legally get married because the world needs more children.

3. Obviously, gay parents will raise gay children, because straight parents only raise straight children.

4. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if Gay marriage is allowed, since Britney Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage was meaningful.

5. Heterosexual marriage has been around a long time and it hasn't changed at all: women are property, Blacks can't marry Whites, and divorce is illegal.

6. Gay marriage should be decided by people, not the courts, because the majority-elected legislatures, not courts, have historically protected the rights of the minorities.

7. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire counrty. That's why we have only one religion in America.

8. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

9. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

10. Children can never suceed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why single parents are forbidden to raise children.

11. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society. Heterosexual marriage has been around for a long time, and we could never adapt to new social norms because we haven't adapted to things like cars or longer lifespans.

12. Civil unions, providing most of the same benefits as marriage with a different name are better, because a "seperate but equal" institution is always constitutional. Seperate schools for African-Americans worked just as well as seperate marriages for gays and lesbians will.

Another One

Anyone who has ever been to New York City, or at least has seen one episode of Law & Order, knows that the Big Apple is not all Sex & the City. Not everyone there sips expensive wines and lives in townhouses. There are millions upon millions who live in destitute poverty. And these millions love Howard Stern and they sure as hell admire The Donald. And neither one of these gents likes Bush.

First is was Howard to come back from the darkside. Now Donald Trump, a Republican no less, has bit the dust.


The Donald has turned thumbs down on the President's war in Iraq, calling it a "mess."

"What was the purpose of the whole thing?" Donald Trump asks in an Esquire interview. "Hundreds of young people killed. And what about the people coming back with no arms and no legs?"

Poor Bush. Will the masses listen to Howard and Donald? I kinda hope so.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Amend This

The General is on a mission. It seems that he got a very urgent email from Sen Bill Frist concerning to the Marriage Amendment. In it, Frist writes


Next week the U.S. Senate will be voting on the Federal Marriage Amendment. This amendment would define marriage as the union of one man and one woman, and is a necessary addition to our Constitution. The FMA is vital to preserve the institution of marriage in our country.

I can tell you that your voice matters. As Senators, it is our responsibility to listen to you. So I encourage you to make your views known.

Thank you for standing up to protect marriage.

Senator Bill Frist, M.D.
Majority Leader
United States Senate

The General so nicely wrote him back. Although I'm against the Marriage Amendment, it's nice to see that the General really put some thought in why marriage needs to be protected. Listen to what he says.


Dear Sen. Frist,

Thank you for writing me about the Homosexual Discrimination Amendment. I was pleased to see that you have teamed up with Donald Wildmon to get it passed. He's been a hero of mine ever since he exposed Mighty Mouse's abuse of cocaine--that took a lot of guts considering the wretched rodent's super strength and ability to fly.

I'm one hundred percent with you in this effort to deny homosexuals the right to marry those they love. The very thought of two men or two women entering into a covenant to love, honor, and cherish each other until the day they die just sickens me.

It's good for a society to reserve the granting of basic human rights to selected groups. It gives people something to which to aspire once their white collar salaries become service economy hourly wages or unemployment benefits. Americans may not be able to reclaim their former standards of living, but, by gosh, they have an opportunity to overcome oppression and achieve status in those classes that are privileged with rights. All they need to do is suppress their innate attraction to those of the same sex. It's the new American Dream.

Well, I'm off to write my Senators.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

It's nice to see people really take issues to heart. In case you're wondering, here's the tally of senators for the amendment, against the amendment and those uncommitted as of yet.

Oh Yeah?



But can Kerry suspend a baseball in midair with his hand?

Blind Patriotism

I found the analogy for something I've been trying to put in words for more than two years now. And all this time, it was in Lies And the Lying Liars Who Tell Them by Al Franken.


As conservative radio and TV personality Sean Hannity says, we liberals "train our children to criticize America, not celebrate it."

They don't get it. We love America just as much as they do. But in a different way. You see, they love America the way a four-year-old loves her mommy. Liberals love America like grown-ups. To a four-year-old, everything Mommy does is wonderful and anyone who critisizes Mommy is bad. Grown-up love means actually understanding what you love, taking the good with the bad, and helping your loved one grow. Love takes attention and work and is the best thing in the world.

We don't hate America because it tortured its prisoners. We hate the fact that America tortured its prisoners. We don't hate America because it started two wars within two years, one of which was totally unnecessary. We hate the fact that we were dragged into a conflict with no clear objectives, no clear guidlelines and no clear exit policy.

Liberals don't hate America. We just don't sit idly by and let conservatives use Mommy to do bad things. Aren't all people against that?

New Books

At the library today (God, I love libraries!), I got Bushwhacked by Molly Ivins, Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them by Al Franken, and to balance out the reading, Treason: Liberal Treachery From the Cold War to the War on Terrorism by Ann Coulter.

If you've read them, tell me. I'm way excited.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Umm, Yeah

Well, duh.


The White House is trying to put at least an arm's length between President Bush and indicted Enron executive Kenneth Lay, a campaign benefactor Bush nicknamed "Kenny Boy" when the two were up-and-comers in Texas.

Who would've expected?

Read this


"He was a supporter in the past and he's someone that I would also point out has certainly supported Democrats and Republicans in the past," McClellan said.

Makes you almost think that Ken Lay was bipartisan, right? That he loved both parties equally. No, that's false. McClellan is a distorter of the truth.


Lay clearly favored the GOP. He and his wife, Linda, donated $882,580 to federal candidates from 1989-2001, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. All but $86,470 went to Republicans. Enron and its employees gave $3 million to Republican candidates from 1998 to 2001 and $1.1 million to Democrats.

...

In addition to Lay's political campaign donations, he and his wife contributed $100,000 to Bush's 2001 inauguration. Lay also was a fund-raiser for Bush, bringing in at least $100,000 for Bush's 2000 campaign. That put Lay in "Pioneer" status as one of the president's top money-raisers.

He's a lackey and he deserves to be put in jail. (For more than just donating to the Republican Party, mind you.) To say that Bush does not have big corporations in his pocket is to say the Pope is protestant. It just ain't true. The gun lobby, big oil, corrupt energy execs, all the bad guys of the country, those who take advantage of the every day person, is in Bush's pocket. Or, is it that Bush is in their pocket? You decide.

Declined

Interesting...


President Bush declined an invitation to speak at the NAACP's annual convention, the group said. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People expects more than 8,000 people to attend the convention opening Saturday.

Democratic challenger John Kerry accepted an invitation to speak next Thursday on the final day of the convention, the NAACP said.

Bush spoke at the 2000 NAACP convention in Baltimore when he was a candidate. But he has declined invitations to speak in each year of his presidency, the first president since Herbert Hoover not to attend an NAACP convention, John White, a spokesman for the group, said Wednesday.

The NAACP received a letter from the White House three weeks ago declining the invitation because of scheduling conflicts and thanking the it for understanding. It was signed by presidential scheduler Melissa Bennett.

I guess he's got all the black votes he needs for the election. There's Condi, and Powell, and... well, I think that's all that voted for him the first time around.

Gaybys

In Maggie Gallagher's new op/ed piece, the ever-homophobic woman relays a story to the reader about a woman who was brought up by two lesbians. This woman, Cassidy, explains how she was short-changed in life and because of this, same-sex marriages shouldn't be legal. She says


It's not something that a seal of approval should be stamped on: We shouldn't say it is a great and wonderful thing and then you have all these kids who later in life will turn around and realize they've been cheated. The adults choose to have that lifestyle and then have a kid. They are fulfilling their emotional needs -- they want to have a child -- and they are not taking into account how that's going to feel to the child; there's a clear difference between having same-sex parents and a mom and a dad.

I take offense to the insinuation that only same-sex marriages are brought into this mix. If you reread what I italicised, imagine Cassidy talking about single-parents. How many children grow up nowadays feeling cheated because they didn't know their mother, or their father, or either because both were too busy working two part-time jobs? It's unfair to categorically villify same-sex marriage without looking at the other, more damaging conditions facing our children.

Parents depend on the school system to teach their children everything from sex-ed to reading, writing, 'rithmetic. No time is spent in the home with the children reinforcing what it taught and learned in the school. Parents, if there are actually two at home, just don't have the time. In our society of a minimum wage that is far below the living wage, and in fact below the poverty line, both parents must work to make ends meet--often times at more than one job. How is this not short-changing the children? How does this stop the children from "realiz[ing] they've been cheated"?

They don't know their parents because they don't see their parents. And what about those who only know one parent or the other? How is this situation any less damaging than same-sex parents? Let's say the mother is raising Cassidy on her own. Where does the money come from? Her mother will have to work, most likely two jobs in order to pay for her child all by herself. And if the father is somewhere in her life, the two parents will probably bicker and fight and this can't be very good for the child.

What it comes down to is this: Same-sex couples want to be together. They work together; they live together; they want to raise a child together. They don't want a child as a tax-benefit or in order to turn him or her gay. They want a child because they want a child. There's no accidental pregnancies here. No abortion as birth control. Two men aren't going to accidentally get pregnent.

And to say that this is reason enough to keep the men separate, because they cannot bear children of their own accord, is to say that the millions of barren men and women in the United States mean less to society because of the fact. This is just not so.

In order for Cassidy's, and ultimately Gallagher's, argument to be true, that same-sex couples mess up children and this is reason enough to keep same-sex marriages out of the mainstream, the government -- and society -- must crack down a lot harder on children out of wedlock and divorce and the minimum wage. Just to name a few.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

John Edwards

California

As I'm reading up on the news that I've been oblivious to for the past few days, I came across a rather strikingly odd story involving the Secretary of Education in California. This is how the Associated Press tells the story:


In a videotaped exchange at the city's central library on Thursday, a girl asked Riordan if he knew that her name meant "Egyptian goddess."

Riordan, who apparently believed he'd been asked what her name meant, replied, "It means stupid dirty girl."

Some in the room laughed nervously, and the girl again told Riordan the meaning of her name.

"Hey, that's nifty," he said.

Just wow. To be the Secretary of Education in California, don't you need to know how to talk to kids, or at least like them a little bit? Who do you have to know to be this bad at your job and still get to be the chief education person in the state?


Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a longtime friend of Riordan who appointed the former Los Angeles mayor to his cabinet...

Oh. Well there ya go.

What kind of education secretary tells a girl that her name means "stupid dirty girl" no matter in what context. He subsequently apologized and Schwarzenegger condemed the comment as "unacceptable in any context." I don't think he should even have a job anymore. Get someone with... oh, I don't know... compassion and common sense!

Over 1 Million Served

No, not really. But I have reached the 300 unique visitors watermark. Three hundred individual people have read through my blog, most more than once. Who would've thought three hundred people would find my website. Yeah baby, yeah!

And this comes over the fourth of July weekend when I'm not even at the computer posting! Craziness.

Anyhow, I'm all moved in and most of my stuff is put away and looking pretty fine. I'm excited. I'll post more later this afternoon when I get caught up on the news and such. I barely found out yesterday that Kerry picked John Edwards as his running mate! I just happened to be in front of a working television. Such luck!

Saturday, July 03, 2004

On the Road Again...

I will be moving into the new house all day tomorrow (Fourth of July), so please don't expect me to post much of anything. When I'm settled in once again and get everything situated, I should have DSL (thank you, Verizon) and thus an easier time posting my ramblings. I hope you take care of yourself and each other this holiday. See you soon.

Zac

Friday, July 02, 2004

At It Again!

In a memo from the Bush/Cheney reelection campaign to conservative church-goers, one section tells supporters to:


Send your church directory to your state Bush-Cheney '04 headquarters or give to a BC04 field representative.

Identify another conservative church in your community who we can organize for Bush.

Recruit 5 people in your church to help with the voter registration project.

Talk to your pastor about holding a citizenship Sunday and voter registration drive.

Appalling. If a church becomes partisan and actively campaigns for one presidential contender over another, it can lose its tax-exempt status. Bush-Cheney know this and still promote church-goers to do such illegal, unethical maneuvers. What a great bunch of people, those Republicans are.


"I'm appalled that the Bush-Cheney campaign would intrude on a local congregation in this way," said Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission.

Amen, brother.

If You Can't Beat 'Em



We mustn't speak of this love, Romano.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

CP, Revisited

Another thing that gets me about the far-right religious folks are their undying devotion to capital punishment. (I wrote about this in the previous post.) They find their strength and assurance from Exodus 21, verses 23-25


But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.

I don't contend that these verses do not exist. There they are, in all graphic imagery. But I, an actual Bible-reader, look past these verses and read what God said to Moses in Deuteronomy 32:35


It is mine to avenge, I will repay.

Hey, I'm all about letting Him do the killing, thank you very much. He wants to do it and I don't need any part of it.