Sunday, May 31, 2009
Saturday, May 30, 2009
Huh? What? Huh? The most Catholic state is leaning toward equality?
Friday, May 29, 2009
However, those fools who support Deal’s proposal say “birthright citizenship” encourages illegal immigration and makes enforcement of immigration laws more difficult.
“This is a sensible, overdue measure that closes a clause that was never meant to be a loophole,” said Bob Dane, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which seeks tighter immigration restrictions.
Azadeh Shahshahani, director of the Immigrants Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia, said “We would stand in strong opposition to this bill as it’s in fundamental contradiction to our nation’s long history of welcoming immigrants and bestowing inalienable rights” on all people born here, regardless of the circumstances of their birth.
“I think the current makeup of the Congress is such that this will never get a hearing and will never be an issue that we get a chance to vote on....[b]ut I think it’s important to keep the issues that are part of the immigration problem alive.”
A while back on my
Being a fairly liberal-leaning guy with either liberal friends or Republican and Christian friends who don't believe that being one has anything to do with the other, I was surprised at how many people took offense to what I had to say.
These people weren't friends of Mr. Robertson but friends, apparently, of God. They had "spoken" with him and he had assured them that he was no friend of the gays. He also told them that he loved America more than any other country and was a huge fan of Dancing With the Stars.
I believe the fact that an atheist, who doesn't believe in God at all, is allowed to enter into the holy land of marriage while a gay Christian is not, shows that this law is arbitrary. Are we to believe that anyone who doesn't live their life according to the King James Bible isn't protected by the same laws that protect those who do? Using the same argument that I've seen on the 700 Club, that would mean that Jewish, Hindu, or Muslim weddings are also null and void.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
In a ground-breaking move, the Church’s ruling body voted by 326 to 267 in support of the Reverend Scott Rennie, the British Press Association reported Sunday.
The 37-year-old’s appointment at Queen’s Cross Church in Aberdeen, on Scotland’s northeast coast, provoked opposition from traditionalist members of the church and has led to fears it could cause a damaging split.
More than 400 Church ministers and almost 5,000 Church of Scotland members are said to have signed an online petition, organized by the Fellowship of Confessing Churches, against the appointment.
Papers lodged with the Church of Scotland’s General Assembly in Edinburgh claimed scriptures in the Old and New Testament describe same-sex activity as a “wrong choice.” However, Rennie’s supporters argued that the Bible does not directly address homosexual relationships, which are now “essentially a feature of modern society.”
In a notice to be sent to State Department employees, Clinton says regulations that deny same-sex couples and their families the same rights and privileges that straight diplomats enjoy are "unfair and must end."
She says providing training, medical care and other benefits to domestic partners promote "cohesiveness, safety and effectiveness" of U.S. diplomatic posts abroad.
And she says "it will also help the department attract and retain personnel in a competitive environment where domestic partner benefits and allowances are increasingly the norm for world-class employers."
The organizers called the event a “welcome” for Obama, but many people in the crowd were angry for the president's failure to repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) as he had promised.
Rick Jacobs, who chairs the Courage Campaign and organized the protest: “The president made a promise when he made his speech about hope. I bought that promise and I still buy that promise, but it’s time for him to start fulfilling that promise for all Americans.”
The Courage Campaign has collected 140,000 signatures for a petition asking the president to end DADT and stop firing of U.S. Army Lt. Dan Choi, an Arab language specialist who was discharged after declaring hat he was gay.
These are crab floats used to set cages in and around Newport Harbor. I love all the colors.
And down there is a Sea lion who woke up when my father started clicking his picture. Maybe he should be on Make Me A Supermodel.
And this is Newport Harbor, with the bridge in the background.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
If you want to express your disappointment to Mr. Obama, use this link to do so. And thanks to Mark, over at Running With Blue Sponge, who gave me the idea.
As a gay man I was overjoyed to support you in your bid for the White House. I saw in you a new hope for the future, a chance to feel included a s a gay man, a chance for change. You asked for my help, for the help of the entire LGBT community, and we gave it to you because we believed you were on our side.
But I grow disappointed each day, Mr President.
You campaigned on the idea of ending DADT, and yet now it seems as though that is a non-issue in your administration. By not coming through on your promise, you continue to let gay men and women lose their careers because of some antiquated, homophobic ideal that gay people are unfit to serve their country.
That is discrimination. And it's wrong.
When marriage equality passed in Iowa...in Maine....I wanted to hear from you, but I didn't. When the issue arose in New Hampshire and New York, you said nothing. You have been strangely silent on this issue and I don't know why.
And I want to know why.
Just yesterday, the California Supreme Court allowed discrimination of a minority by a majority to be the law of the land; California is no longer Golden. And yet you have nothing to say on the issue.
This is discrimination as law; separate but equal as a way of life. This is treating the LGBT community as 'less than.'
And it's enough.
I realize there are so many issues for you to tackle as president. I know times are tough. But you asked for my help, and offered to help me live my life as a fully equal member of the United States, and you have fallen short.
I realize we are mere months into your administration, but you don't even talk about us any more. I feel as though the LGBT community and our struggles for equality are a non-issue in your White House. Yet, worse than not speaking about us, you no longer talk to us. I feel no support for our community coming from your administration.
As a gay American, I am deeply disappointed.
As an American who believes we are all equal and should be treated equally, I am disappointed.
As a human being, I am disappointed.
It was Justice Carlos R. Moreno, who said:
"I conclude that requiring discrimination against a minority group on the basis of a suspect classification strikes at the core of the promise of equality that underlies our California Constitution."
"We're going to have to go back to the ballot and I believe say to the people of California, 'listen, whatever your feelings are on this, you can't have separate rules.' Ipso facto. That's separate but equal. It's not right."
California Senator Barbara Boxer
Kate Kendell, from the Natioanl Center for Lesbian rights:
"Today, the California Supreme Court diminished its legacy as a champion of equality. By upholding Prop 8, an initiative that stripped the right to marry from same-sex couples in California, the Court’s decision has undermined the central principle that all people are entitled to equal rights and has jeopardized every minority group in California. No minority group should have to defend its right to equality at the ballot, and the Court should not have permitted such a travesty of justice to stand."
And check out Joe.My.God. for all the news of the New Yorks protests and protests around the nation. He's got good stuff over there!
As I read the news about the recent advances of marriage equality across our country, I think it is easy for many to get distracted by the politics and rhetoric on this issue and lose sight of what is really at its heart: the equality of freedom.
No matter how politically charged the discussions about marriage equality may get, the question is really a simple one: Do the rights and privileges we offer citizens include everyone in our country, or only some of us?
I believe that allowing gays and lesbians the freedom to marry is an idea whose time has come. Though my opinion is no doubt influenced by my family's public role in political life, I still approach this from personal experience, as I think most people do. For me, this is about treating all of my friends, and all of our brothers, sisters, children and grandchildren the same as I want to be treated. Equality under the law and personal freedoms are what make America the greatest country in the world, and they are core values that I hold as a Republican.
As I recently wrote after speaking at the Log Cabin Republican convention: "People may always have a difference of opinion . . . but championing a position that wants to treat people unequally isn't just un-Republican. At its fundamental core, it's un-American." I believe most Americans want our nation to succeed. Marriage equality moves us to a place where more of us can do a better job of taking care of our families.
Gays and lesbians are a vital part of our communities. They are doctors, teachers, firefighters, emergency personnel and neighbors. In this way, marriage equality is also about supporting good citizens and strengthening our communities. When a committed gay couple seeks to declare their love for one another and get married, the whole community benefits from the added stability and strength of that family. On top of that, we don't give up anything by sharing responsibilities and protections with those whom we love.
That's why I support marriage equality. It is the best and fairest way to grant gay and lesbian neighbors and family members the protections and responsibilities that they need to provide for their family and give back to their community.
As Republicans, we understand the importance of strong communities. Last week, the New York Assembly passed the marriage bill with the support of five Republican Assembly members. Now, the bill goes before the state Senate, where Republican senators will make the difference on whether the bill becomes law or dies. Once again, New York has the opportunity to make a statement about Republican values and fairness by passing the marriage bill.
I believe marriage equality will soon come to New York. My hope is that Republican senators will offer their support and make the difference to pass the marriage bill.
By voting for the marriage bill, they will make a strong statement about supporting New York families, strengthening New York communities and demonstrating that equality and fairness are fundamental values of New York Republicans. It will leave a legacy that will make us all proud.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
The decision will be announced at 10 AM PST.
Will we celebrate, or begin to fight for our rights?
UPDATE: The California Supreme Court has upheld Prop H8 banning marriage equality in that state. It will, however, let stand the 18,000 marriages performed before last November's election.
This is a sad day.
A day in which California has allowed one segment of the population to feel the sting of discrimination yet again.
A day in which the LGBT community is told that we don't matter, that we don't count, that we are "less than"other American citizens.
It's discrimination, plain and simple.
We all need to band together like we've never done so before and see to it that we are no longer undeserving of the same rights and privileges afforded the rest of the population.
The House Youth and Family Committee, chaired by Representative Greg Harris, who's gay, intends to attach an amendment legalizing civil unions to a "shell bill" that's already been approved by the Senate, Garcia said. If the full House votes in favor of the legislation, the bill would be sent to the full Senate within hours for a vote of concurrence.
Garcia said Illinois lawmakers often use "shell bills" to pass legislation expediently. He said it's necessary to legalize civil unions through this method because the legislative session ends May 30 and the approach limits the time that opponents of civil unions can lobby lawmakers.
"We get it out of the House and then senators only have a few hours of being beat up by our opponents rather than three days or a long weekend," he said. "Since there is a perfectly legitimate way of doing it in one day, that's what we're going to do."
Colin Powell went on the offensive this week, arguing that the conservative wing of the GOP is steering the party too far to the right and is unwilling to listen to other views within the party.
Colin Powell: "I believe we should build on the base because the nation needs two parties, two parties debating each other....what we have to do is debate and define who we are and what we are and not just listen to dictates that come down from the right wing of the party."
And by 'right wing' he's referring to the Dynamic Asshat Duo of Dick Cheney and Rush Limbaugh, who have openly mocked him as a Repug in name only, citing his endorsement of Democrat Barack Obama over Repug John McCain for president.
Powell revealed his voting record for the past forty-plus years--yes to Ronald Reagan and both Bush men, but yes also to John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson and Jimmy Carter--but reaffirmed that he is a solid Republican who wishes that the GOP become more inclusive or risk giving Democrats and independents the chance to scoop up disaffected moderate Republicans who left the party over such conservative and divisive issues as immigration and marriage equality. Those younger Repugs are open to moderation and change; those old men--Cheney Limbaugh et al--are not.
"If we don't reach out more, the party is going to be sitting on a very, very narrow base. You can only do two things with a base. You can sit on it and watch the world go by, or you can build on [it]."
Dick Cheney has made it quite clear who he thinks is the new leader of the Repugs, saying he would rather follow broadcaster Limbaugh than Powell into political battle over the GOP's future. "I didn't know he was still a Republican," he said in that smartass, dumbass tone of his.
Rush Limbaugh called Powell "just another liberal"--such a dirty word, y'all--and said he should become a Democrat. In a blatant show of his own bigotry and racism, Limbaugh also said that Powell endorsed Obama based on race.
Colin Powell took on the Cheney-Limbaugh high-profile-low-class criticism, saying, "I may be out of their version of the Republican Party, but there's another version of the Republican Party waiting to emerge once again."
Now, don't get me wrong. I am not a fan of Colin Powell. I believe he lied when he spoke at the UN and I believe he knew he was lying. Whether he did it at the urging of Bush or the orders of Hellhound Cheney, makes no difference. One of the main reasons we got into this war was because of the things Colin Powell said, the lies he told.
But if the Repugs are to survive and regroup and grow and change and realize that this isn't Dick Cheney's America, or Rush Limbaugh Land, they ought to pay closer attention to people like Colin Powell.
I like the idea of choice; of GOP over DNC. I like a good debate on issues. But when one side sees only one way, their way, they are quickly losing ground. The world is changing and the Repugs aren't moving as fast as they should.Just sayin'.
It was already announced that Xtina would star in the movie musical as a small-town girl who dreams of being a singer but finds herself thrusting her crotch at a burlesque club. The working title should be, Showgirls: The Whores Are Alive With The Sound Of Music!
Monday, May 25, 2009
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Here are some tidbits--and that's me, in red:
How about innovative and new, and most decidedly not you? How about watch more than once before you climb onto your throne and issue a decree no one but you cares about?
Yes, Clay, base it on one performance. If we all did it that way, right now we'd be saying, "Clay who?"
Oh wait, we are.
He doesn't watch but he knows what was happening. How queervoyant of you, Gayken.
Until the finale, folks are voting for the contestant that they want to see continue. But, I believe that on that last night, the dynamic changes. No longer forced to choose one person that they want to see win, the audience can effectively vote AGAINST the person that they don't want to see win. In the case of season two this might have happened. There may have been some folks who voted for myself or Ruben because they didn't like the other of us. I was the nerdy little girly boy .... so they may have voted for Ruben .... I feel that Ruben and I were fairly matched. We both had our detractors and negatives, but I feel we were both very worthy of being on that stage in that moment, and either of us would have been worthy of winning.
But you didn't win, Clay. You. Didn't. Win. Build a bridge and get over it. The Claymates have left the building.
The show was different then, and folks made it in seasons 1-3 because they were "real" people who happened to sing/entertain well. But, somewhere along the way, AI stopped being about real people.
Real people like closeted homos? That kinda "real"?
In a battle between David and Goliath, my money is on David!
Wow! I always took you for a size queen. My bad.
I think many voters got sick of being "told who to vote for" .... Therefore, on that last night, they used their votes against a contestant that they were tired of hearing about and for the contestant who had been written off. And, at the same time, I think they voted AGAINST an American Idol that has, for four years now, been more about the slick productions and polished contestants than it has been about finding the raw talent that it did in its first three seasons.
So, Clay, honey, if you're 'real' talent than there is no such thing as talent. You're a bitter, washed up queen who is reduced to guest spots on failing reality shows, or peddling your baby for publicity. How real.Will American Idol choose to listen to the resounding and clarion call that those voters gave them?.... "Enough with the pretention. More Rubens, more Clays, more Fantasias and Tamyras and Kellys please." My faith has always been in the voters. I think they have gotten it right every year (mine included). It's now up to American Idol to decide if it will finally REALLY listen to the folks that keep it on the air.More Clays? More self-loathing homosexuals who live their lives in fear of being outed until their career tanks and then they use their sexual orientation and the sudden arrival of Turkey Baster Baby Clay to revive a flagging career?
Be gone, Clay, before someone drops a house on you.
In case you couldn't tell, I don't like Clay. Not on AI. Not after AI. Not Leave-Me-Alone-Clay; not Yep-I'm-Gay-Clay.
Friday, May 22, 2009
As I write this, we in California are still waiting for the State Supreme Court's decision on Proposition 8. Today is the 30th anniversary of the White Night Riots and tomorrow is Harvey Milk's birthday. Next month we will observe the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion and the birth of the modern LGBT Movement.
Across the country, a new generation of LGBT leaders is rising up, learning how to organize, speak out and fight back. These young activists reject compromise and delay; “the tranquilizing drug of gradualism,” described so aptly by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. They are demanding nothing less than full equality under the law for LGBT people in all fifty states.In my travels throughout California and around the country, I have been stunned and inspired by the determination and fearlessness of our young people. This is the generation that is going to win. This is the time to unite and push - as we have never pushed before - to achieve victory.
Sadly, at the very moment we are poised to reach our greatest goals, President Obama and the Democratic leaders of Congress have turned their backs, forgotten their promises and betrayed our trust. In recent weeks House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has stated that repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act is “not a priority.” President Obama has ignored the appeals of brave young people serving in our military as they are drummed out of the services for being gay or lesbian. Indeed, Lt. Daniel Choi who recently “came out” publicly, was dismissed from the army, even though he is a highly valued fluent Arabic speaker and a veteran of the Iraq war.
Apologists for the Democrats counsel caution and patience. They speak of “political reality.” The time has come to change that reality.I applaud and endorse David Mixner's call for a national march with the following four suggestions:
- Schedule the march for the weekend of October 10 - 11, 2009. This is National Coming Out Day and the 30th anniversary of the first national march.....The Columbus Day holiday provides a three-day weekend for many and the weather is generally favorable.
- Have one demand only: “Full Equality Now - full and equal protection under the law for LGBT people in all matters governed by civil law in all 50 states.” Let's stop settling for fractions of equality. Every compromise undermines our humanity. We must declare our equality.
- Organize the march from the grassroots with a decentralized internet-based campaign. Keep it simple; avoid bloated budgets and cumbersome structures. The primary objective must be to turn out the largest possible crowd. We don't need elaborate and expensive staging or fabulous dinner parties....we need a million or more people in the street demanding equality now.
- Encourage and enlist our allies in the broader progressive movement to build the march. Involve the labor movement, racial, ethnic and immigrant communities, progressive faith leaders, peace and social justice advocates and other supporters. LGBT people of all ages and races recognize the challenges facing our nation and our planet. We are eager to stand, as equals, with our fellow citizens in meeting these challenges.
“We must continue the education that began in this campaign. We must destroy the myths, once and for all, shatter them. And most important of all: every gay person must come out. You must tell your family. You must tell your friends, if they truly are your friends. You must tell the people in the stores you shop in. You must tell the people you work with….”
--Harvey Milk on the night of the defeat of the Briggs Initiative which would have banned the employment of gay and lesbian teachers in the California school system. November 1978
“As the years pass, the guy can be educated, that’s where we disagree. Everyone can be reached. Everyone can be educated and helped. I’m gonna sit next to him every day and let him know we’re not all those bad things he thinks we are.”
--Harvey Milk on Dan White, the man who murdered him.
“ A true function of politics is not just to pass laws, but to give hope. There have been too many disappointments lately. The real abyss lies not too far ahead when a disappointed people lose their hope forever. When that happens, everything we cherish will be lost.”
--Harvey Milk’s inaugural remarks
More from Harvey:
"The American dream starts with neighborhoods. If we wish to rebuild our cities, we must first rebuild our neighborhoods. To sit on the front steps—whether it’s a veranda in a small town or a concrete stoop in a big city—is infinitely more important than to huddle on the living room lounger and watch a make-believe world in not-quite living color."
"I can be killed with ease.
I can be cut right down.
But I cannot fall back into my closet.
I have grown.
I am not by myself.
I am too many.
I am all of us."
"If I turned around every time someone called me ‘faggot’ I’d be walking backwards. And I don’t want to go backwards."
Natalie Jones' mother says, “This whole thing is unbelievable – first my daughter got called into the principal’s office as if she were in some kind of trouble, and then they treated her presentation like it was something icky. Harvey Milk was an elected official in this state and an important person in history. To say my daughter’s presentation is ‘sex education’ because Harvey Milk happened to be gay is completely wrong.”
Thursday, May 21, 2009
For your edification, Chuck, "sexual orientation" is already defined by federal statute as applying only to "consensual homosexuality or heterosexuality," thereby excluding pedophiles, who engage in nonconsensual sexual relationships with children. And, sorry Chuck, but pedophilia is not considered a "disability" under current federal law. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 specifically excludes pedophilia, thereby precluding protection for pedophiles from the hate crimes bill.
But all is not right in Nevada. Guess which one is creating drama.
Yup. Nevada Governor Jim Gibbons said he plans to veto the domestic partner legislation, citing several reasons for his decision. Gibbons' spokesman, Daniel Burns says:
Well, let me ask a question. Why, if you're gay and living in Nevada, do you have to jump through hoops and run that extra mile, and ask Mother May I just to get the same thing available to every other resident of Nevada?
That sounds like discrimination to me, Governor.
And that ain't good.
And they kept Sandhurst. Now he is eye-candy, but.......
We have to stop it.
What is at stake is over 1,000 rights, benefits, privileges and protections granted to all other Americans and denied to the LGBT community. It is about the ability of those who choose to serve their country can do so in total honesty and freedom.
My plea is for our LGBT leaders to call a March on Washington for Marriage Equality this November and if they won't do it, I appeal to our young to come together and provide the leadership. We need to come together in a display of powerful community unity to empower our young and to show the nation that anything less than full freedom is unacceptable.
President Kennedy had to deal with a recession, the Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis and so much more. However, when Dr. King and others filled the streets of cities around America and yes, Washington, DC, the president found the resources and time to stay by their sides. The time has come for us to remove the current administration's option of shrinking from leadership on this issue and to insist they rise to a new level of greatness along side us as we all fight together for freedom. It is the only way."