Archive for laws

Gay Relationship Commitment Worse Than Random Killings

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

gay

An Indiana bakery recently refused to make an anniversary cake for a customer because the event was in honor of a same-sex marriage commitment. It was this couple's 14th anniversary -- which in my book is a strong commitment. How many "straight" relationships last that long?

Putting the legitimacy aside, this bakery refused to make the cake based on their self-professed strong religious beliefs which they claim prohibit them from making a cake that celebrates a lifestyle their religion opposes. Well, they're Catholic and I'm not so sure their religious leader, Pope Francis would draw the line in the sand where these followers have.

So we'll take that and put it aside for a moment. Figuring where religious beliefs begin and just plain bigotry leaves off is a decision for greater minds than mine. The owners of the 111 Cakery, Randy and Trish McGath, insist they've never, in the past, denied service to anyone based upon who they are or their beliefs. Just so long as they're consistent, I think they have an argument. Not a legal one, but a moral one.

RAW STORY:

Owner Randy McGath further explained, “There is zero hate here.This causes us to do a lot of soul searching. Why are we doing what we do? We want to show the love of Christ. We want to be right with our God, but we also want to show kindness and respect to other people.”

The bakery policies also include also not making custom cakes with messages related to alcohol, drugs and violence.

Well, they have their standards, though putting two same-sex names on a generic anniversary cake shouldn't be challenging these religious bakers' beliefs. It's not like the cake celebrates alcohol, drugs or violence which they say they also would refuse.

Wait a minute... are these flour and frosting tossers actually two hypocrites? Here's a cake they did make:

bakery111_Call_of_duy_cake

Call of Duty is one of the most violent video games out there. If that's not celebrating violence, what does? Yet these cretins of cooking, the owners of Cakery 111 defend that cake of violence while refusing two committed, loving gay people the celebration of their love.

And they use religious beliefs as their defense. Bullsh*t is what I call it. Shameful that this hypocritical refusal is not illegal  in Indiana -- at least not yet.

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

Michigan's Rape Insurance -- A Tragic Catch-22

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

rape

We all know what a Catch-22 is: A situation in which a desired outcome or solution is impossible to attain because of a set of inherently illogical rules or conditions. Or to borrow from the famous New England expression when asked for directions, "You can't get there from here."

And that is the condition in the state of Michigan as of Thursday, March 13, 2014: you can't get there from here.

Legislation known as "The Rape Insurance bill," which passed in the Republican dominated state house has become law. Yes, wake up all you sleepy-head women in Michigan!  As of today, if you get raped, and somehow become preggers despite what Todd Akin said, your insurance will no longer cover an abortion. Well, that's not fully true. Insurance companies can cover this procedure if you purchased a separate rape insurance policy -- in advance.

So, all you have to do is plan ahead for your next rape. C'mon, women - take some personal responsibility! Is that so much to ask? After all, it generally takes two to tango, if you catch my drift.

Just go out and get some rape insurance. Don't make a big to-do out of this. It's for your own protection. I mean we all have auto insurance because everyone gets into a fender bender from time to time. And we hopefully now all have health insurance (ACA) because sooner or later we all have medical issues. So why not just carry rape insurance?

Well, that's a good question. Sadly the answer isn't quite as good. NO INSURANCE CARRIERS IN THE STATE OF MICHIGAN CARRY RAPE INSURANCE.

It seems there's a mandated insurance coverage should this situation arise, but not a mandated provider for that coverage. That's the Catch-22. There's where the insanity lies. And that's why you can't get there from here.

This is literally all the Republican's fault. And Gov. Rick Snyder signed the bill into law.

If you want to feel the outrage, listen to Rachel Maddow railing over this last night.

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

Why The LGBT Community Scares The Holy BeJesus Out Of The GOP

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

LGBT

It does make you wonder why the Republicans are so anti-gay as a party. Oh, that's not to say everyone in the Republican party is homophobic -- but we can argue that their most vocal spokespeople certainly are. And on the state level, it's even more acute than nationally.

One reason might be that the conservative wing of the once Grand Old Party (now the WHOMP - White Homophobic Old Men's Party), is being led by the nuts (take that any way you wish) by the Tea Baggers. And they fear anyone or anything that doesn't look old, white, Anglo-Saxon Christian.  Anyone else -- Jew, Muslim, immigrant, minority -- is a threat to them. And their rule book is the bible. More appropriately, their interpretation of its teachings. When it suits them, they quote it. When it doesn't, they interpret it.

The anti-gay movement within the Right-wingnut conservatives bible-thumpers isn't really new, Yahoo News:

Then there are the influential conservative “Christian” groups who have long demonized gays, such as Bryan Fischer at the American Family Association (AFA) who said the “homosexual agenda” is “the greatest immediate threat to every freedom and right that is enshrined in the First Amendment.” Even the Republican Party’s 2012 platform made it seem like the end of days were approaching with their description of gay marriage as “an assault on the foundations of our society.”

So, if Fisher and his AFA group are to be believed, the LGBT community is out to get us. They're the enemy. They're going to enlist us to join (I wonder if they have glossy membership cards) or if we're not willing to convert, to enslave us. By that I guess they mean to turn us into concubines and rape us and our children -- not to mention our pets.)

 AFA’s former general manager, Dr. Buster Wilson, explained the “homosexual agenda” in this light: “Simple ‘equality’ is not the goal of the gay activists.  They want total domination in some cases…not just ‘accept them’ but to bow to them and their wants.“

Who can argue with that reasoning? Us straight folks face a real threat of enslavement and domination. Oooh. Whips. Yup, that's the gay S&M scene. We should all thank visionaries like Fisher and Wilson. They have seen the light. Pull out all the stops to make sure the gays don't even find equal protections under the law or else.

Comedian Sabrina Jalees,  revealed a bit of the homosexual agenda: “You should see what we've got planned once we get our equal rights. We're gonna go ahead and keep living. Almost exactly the same way heterosexuals do, just with better clothes.”

So now we know what's behind the Conservative hatred core. But my favorite comment about the LGBT haters out there is this comment from comedian, Jim David. He put it succinctly: “People who aren't having any good sex are seriously threatened by those who are.”

Anyone else out there who thinks it's time to stop this Conservative right-wing hatred?

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

GOP Maine Representative Hits New Low In Suggesting It's Okay To Rape Women

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

rape

If you can't beat abortion legislation, rape the women. That's a loose translation of the inflammatory remarks made by Maine state Rep. Lawrence Lockman (R-Amherst). Via Raw Story:

If a woman has (the right to an abortion), why shouldn’t a man be free to use his superior strength to force himself on a woman?” Lockman said. “At least the rapist’s pursuit of sexual freedom doesn’t (in most cases) result in anyone’s death.”

"Rape doesn't (in most cases) result in anyone's death?" Whoa there, Mr. Representative. Are you kidding? Some things like psychological scarring and permanent physical damage result that can be far worse than death. And suicides by rape victims are statistically significant according to Suicide.org.

-Rape has long-term emotional consequences that can lead to suicide.
-It is quite common for rape victims to suffer from depression.
-And untreated depression is the number one cause for suicide.
-About 33% of rape victims have suicidal thoughts.
-About 13% of rape victims will attempt suicide.
-Suicide attempts may occur years after the rape.

Reality calling Rep. Lockman. Please come in. It's as if this Neanderthal is saying, if I can't stop you from getting an abortion, then you can't stop me from raping you. If you get pregnant, you have the legal way to get rid of the fetus. So tough noogies.

Rep. Lockman should be under a psychologist's care. He's not safe out on the streets and certainly not safe sitting in the state capital as a voting member of the Maine legislature. He's not just a one issue nutjob, anti-abortion. Here's a bit more about him:

In one of the quotes posted on the blog, Lockman falsely suggested HIV and AIDS could be spread by bed sheets and mosquitos, and he also said the progressive movement helped spread the virus by claiming “the practice of sodomy is a legitimate alternative lifestyle, rather than a perverted and depraved crime against humanity.”

“[Lockman is a] disturbed individual who holds some of the most abhorrent beliefs ever heard from a public official in Maine,” said Ben Grant, the state’s Democratic Party chairman in a statement Tuesday.

More and more these wackadoos are coming to light. And they aren't all made of the same whole cloth. But they seem to all have on thing in common -- they're Republicans. As we saw in Arizona with their recent smokescreen anti-gay law (vetoed by Gov. Jan Brewer), the right wing, evangelical fraction is still out there, and still active.

Their old ideas just won't die. Perhaps like the old soldiers of Gen. MacArthur's day, over time they will just fade away.

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

Houston Police & DA's Office Break The Law - Toss 26 Year Military Veteran Into Street

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

veteran   Aryeh Ohayon and his dog Bandit

A veteran who has a trained and licensed service dog was recently denied service in a Houston, TX restaurant. That could be just a bit of confusion on the part of the restaurant as to the law. So the disabled Army and Navy veteran, who served his country for 26 years, did what he thought he should do to rectify the situation. He called the police.

Sadly they came. Why sadly? Because they didn't know the law in their state. According to The Raw Story:

Last year, Texas Governor Rick Perry signed a bill that made it a misdemeanor to refuse entry to service dogs, irrespective of the disability of their owners.

So this seems quite clear. The vet, Aryeh Ohayon, was within his rights to be served and his being accompanied by a service dog should not have been cause for his embarrassing and unceremonious removal.

But the police officer wasn't the only one ignorant in Houston that day.

Houston Police claim that the officer who responded to the call contacted the Harris County District Attorney’s Office and was told that Thai Spice Buffet II was allowed to bar the door to Ohayon because it is a private establishment.

Ah, the old, "private establishment" excuse. That and the right to religious practices are the two catch phrases hate groups use to discriminate. Fortunately with Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's veto of a discriminatory bill yesterday, a signal went out loud and clear that being a private establishment doesn't exempt you from discrimination laws.

Kudos to Governor Brewer (R - Arizona). Also kudos to Gov. Rick Perry (R -  Texas) for signing the bill which would allow the military veteran or anyone else with a service dog to enter and be served in any establishment.

But a big "Boo," "hiss" and "up yours" to the Houston police and the Harris County DA's office for not knowing the law they're sworn to uphold. They should at the very least apologize to this brave man who served us all in the military for over a quarter of a century.

Oh, and if you think this is an isolated event, Raw Story adds this:

This is but the latest in a string of refusals to allow service dogs to accompany veterans with mental disabilities like depression or PTSD. Last August, police in New Jersey kicked Jared Goering and his service dog, Gator, off the boardwalk, mockingly asking him if “all veterans get service dogs.”

Later that month, a Massachusetts establishment kicked James Glaser and his dog, Jack, out, claiming that his reason for having him wasn’t “legitimate.”

More on the KHOU-TV website.

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

Does The Punishment Fit The Crime?

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

Clay County Jail

Hold onto your seats. Another kerfuffle of justice in... You got it, Florida. What are they putting in the orange juice out there?

If you live in the Sunshine State and your name is Cody Williams, you're not alone. And if you were born in the same year and attended the same high school, chances are you're not the luckiest guy in the world right now.

According to MailOnline:

The case started when a girl from Clay High School in Green Cove Springs claiming to have had sex with a boy named Cody Williams on or around Halloween in 2012.

The victim - who was under 12 but her age has not been disclosed - told investigators what the boy looked like and where he attended school, reported The Florida Times-Union.

Two months later police arrested Cody Lee Williams of Green Cove Springs.

This Cody Lee Williams:

Cody Raymond Williams 1

So, despite his protestations of innocence, off to jail he went --

The police were so confident they had the right guy, they called the victim, told her the assailant had been arrested and she could rest more easily. They'd taken the sexual offender off the streets.

Unfortunately for Cody Lee Williams, the police didn't do their homework nor their obligation of having a line up or showing the victim a picture of the accused. They just held him and refused to investigate any further. Finally Cody Lee's mother prevailed and they held a line-up. The victim told the police that her assailant wasn't in the line-up. They had the wrong guy.

They wanted Cody Raymond Williams, this guy:

Cody Raymond Williams, 2

See any similarity? I don't, but then again, I'm not a trained, experienced cop who should know these things.

Cody Lee Williams case was expunged, however he had already been in jail a total of 35 days. And the correct Cody Williams has since been arrested and charged with the crime. He'lll face court on a sexual assault charge on March 3. But what about the cops who were complicit in the wrongful jailing and inept police work?

An internal investigation found that Hawkins [and three others] failed to properly identify a suspect, failed to properly document information obtained in the investigation, made inaccurate statements in reports and failed to properly document actions taken in an investigation.

This resulted in 35 days of incarceration of a young, impressionable child of 17.  So what's the punishment for the cops?

You'll be surprised to hear that they are being given formal disciplinary letters which will remain in the permanent employment records and they must receive counselling. Oh, and they're awaiting news on possible ten day suspensions. Ten days with pay? Why not 35 without pay, like the victim of their actions caused?

Oh, that's right, it's Florida. Certainly not just a vacation destination -- but the vacation spot from justice.

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

Gays And The NFL - Tax Exempt Status At Stake

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare

football NFL

When the crazies get going, the going gets crazy. Yesterday there was an article circulating about Jack Burkman, a lobbyist trying to propose a bill that would ban gay players from the NFL.

What's crazy about that? Well everything from the fact that lobbyists can't propose bills, senators and congressmen must introduce them. But putting that behind, the fact that discrimination in the workplace is prohibited by law, this would stand in the way of such a bill. But some bills do pass that are found unconstitutional, then they're struck down.

Think of all that cost. And also think of this: The NFL exists as it does with a congressional granted tax exempt status. The multi-billion dollar industry saves millions because of that designation. You think they want to risk their non-profit status? According to CBS MoneyWatch:

This decision has saved the NFL uncounted millions in tax obligations, which means that ordinary people must pay higher taxes, public spending must decline, or the national debt must increase to make up for the shortfall. Nonprofit status applies to the NFL’s headquarters, which administers the league and its all-important television contracts.

The NFL is already under attack. Senator Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma) has already introduced a bill to strip tax-exempt status from sports leagues. How many co-signers do you think would jump on that bandwagon if Congress were to even entertain a bill banning homosexuals from participating in the league?

Two days ago Jason Collins, an openly gay man, joined the NBA Brooklyn Nets. He played in his first game. And guess what? The league didn't collapse. When number 42, Jackie Robinson became the first black player in the MLB, the league didn't collapse. And when and if Michael Sam is drafted by the NFL, the league isn't going to sputter or disintegrate.

Life goes on. Bigotry must fall.

So before ending this post, it might be interesting to know a final fact or two about Jim Burkman, the lobbyist. Via HuffPo:

WASHINGTON -- A Republican lobbyist, [Jack Burkman], hawking a bill that would bar gays from playing in the National Football League has a younger brother who is gay [Jim Burkman].

“I think the idea that he is pushing legislation that is just hurtful and ridiculous is just plain stupid,” said Jim Burkman. “He is not a legislator and he can’t really push legislation. I don’t think there are any cosponsors for a bill. It is just an attention grab and a media grab to pander to those folks who pay him to lobby on their behalf.

Well, now it's time for the NFL to speak up -- and they should because they have a lot to lose -- millions -- if their tax exempt status should be removed. And if they don't come out as accepting of gays, you can count on their exempt status going the way of the "leather helmet" or "Statue of Liberty" play.

FacebookTwitterRedditDiggStumbleUponTumblrLinkedInPinterestEmailShare