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Archive for August, 2006

August 31st, 2006


The usual retort by gay bashers is that the victim made a pass at them, or something akin to a pass.  This is the essence of the "gay panic" defense, that the victim provoked them by in some way attacking their masculinity or their heterosexuality.  What heterosexuals don’t realize, is that they get to play too, by merely being thought to be gay by their assailants, or by having gay friends, and now, apparently, just going to a concert given by a gay performer

(London) Two men who beat a man and his young nephew as they left an Elton John concert were convicted Wednesday of assault causing bodily harm.

Graham Brydon had taken his nephew John to the concert at Watford football stadium in June last year.  Walking home Brydon put an official T-shirt he bought at the concert over his shirt.

Henry Peters, 31, and Neil Wattley, 30, spotted the T-shirt and began harassing Brydon and his nephew, yelling "Elton John is fucking gay."

Then without provocation the assailants began beating them.

Brydon, in his 50s, required hospitalization for a suspected broken cheekbone.

Peters and Wattley pleaded not guilty, and claimed that Brydon and his nephew had provoked the attack. 

But at trial police showed tape from a CCTV camera which had recorded the entire encounter.

The tape showed Wattley yelling the homophobic slur and then punching Brydon in the face.  Peters then joined in the attack.

Notice the reflex.  They provoked us!  Yes.  Because "Elton John is fucking gay."  It was provocation enough.  Were it not for the video tape, they might just have gotten away with it.  People would think to themselves, there must have been Some kind of provocation after all…nobody just walks up to complete strangers and starts beating them up without Some kind of provocation…  And so there was.  "Elton John is fucking gay."   That was the provocation.  Luckily for the victims in this case, there was a video tape to prove that was all there was to it.

Without a doubt this is the way it goes in nearly all gay bashings.  If you could watch a tape of the entire time Matthew Shepard was in the company of his killers the night he was tortured and murdered, you would, never doubt it, see something very similar to this.  Two adult thugs suddenly turning on a young five foot two 112 pound gay college student who had done absolutely nothing to them, beating him bloody, tying him to a fence, putting cigarettes put out on his skin, and then bashing his skull with a handgun, and then later telling the police, and then the world, that Shepard had provoked them.

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on Provocation

August 30th, 2006

All The Markings Of Bigotry

So…here’s the scenario…  A man who was hired by a city police department to psychologically screen prospective new hires is discovered to be a member of an antisemitic group that distributes copies of Protocols of the Elders of Zion, pamphlets denying the holocaust really happened, and asserting that Jews are anti-Christian Christ killers. It develops that this man was conducting psychological tests against prospective employees which he developed on a grant from the Bush Department of Justice.  Some say his membership in the antisemitic group is suggestive of why he’s disqualified many Jewish applicants, and they complain to the police community relations council, which orders an investigation.  The police department stops using his services while the investigation is underway. 

The head of the antisemitic group is suitably outraged.  "Does this mean that any person with a Christian or moral belief system cannot work for the city?" he asks. "This case has all the markings of blatant anti-Christian discrimination and bigotry. People of faith should follow it carefully, because they could be next."  Everyone writes him and the former police department screener off as a couple of bigoted crackpots.

Hahahaha!  No…  

Minneapolis interim police chief Tim Dolan has ordered an inquiry into the use by his force of a psychologist tied to a group that opposes LGBT civil rights, gay marriage and endorses the so-called ex-gay movement.

Michael A. Campion has been used by the police department for more than a year to screen prospective police officers.  Campion also has worked for departments in more than 100 cities over the past 30 years. He  is based in Champaign, Illinois.

His involvement with the Illinois Family Institute was brought to Dolan’s attention at a meeting last week with the Police Community Relations Council when it was learned that Campion had made negative comments about single parents.

Although some of Capion’s comments to prospective officers "disturbed" members of the Council, Chief Dolan said there was nothing specific to indicate he was biased in his testing.  Nevertheless he ordered an independent inquiry and said Capion would not be used until the inquiry finished its work.

"Does this mean that any person with a Christian or moral belief system cannot work for the city of Minneapolis?" said David Smith. "This case has all the markings of blatant anti-Christian discrimination and bigotry. People of faith should follow it carefully, because they could be next."

Bigotry.  Bigotry.  Homosexuals are disease spreading, child molesting, family destroying perverts that god hates and who don’t deserve any sort of civil rights and people who tell us not to kick them in the face are not moral and are not Christian.  And we’re not bigots, the rest of you are.  Bigotry.  Bigotry.

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on All The Markings Of Bigotry

August 29th, 2006

Tales From George Bush’s America…Special Katrina Remembrance Edition

One year ago today the United States lost a city.  And if you’re still wondering why reconstruction has been taking so long to even get really started, then you’ve been missing the point of the past five years.  Digby has a post up, linking to a Frank Rich column that pretty much nails it, but I wouldn’t go reading it if you’re still not ready to see that open sewer that is the republican party today for what it is…

Douglas Brinkley, the Tulane University historian who wrote the best-selling account of Katrina, “The Great Deluge,” is worried that even now the White House is escaping questioning about what it is up to (and not) in the Gulf. “I don’t think anybody’s getting the Bush strategy,” he said when we talked last week. “The crucial point is that the inaction is deliberate — the inaction is the action.” As he sees it, the administration, tacitly abetted by New Orleans’s opportunistic mayor, Ray Nagin, is encouraging selective inertia, whether in the rebuilding of the levees (“Only Band-Aids have been put on them”), the rebuilding of the Lower Ninth Ward or the restoration of the wetlands. The destination: a smaller city, with a large portion of its former black population permanently dispersed. “Out of the Katrina debacle, Bush is making political gains,” Mr. Brinkley says incredulously. “The last blue state in the Old South is turning into a red state.”

The inaction is the action…  People who are thinking that the devistation of New Orleans, and the Bush gang’s shockingly callow response to it are going to hurt the republicans politically still aren’t getting it.  New Orleans is dead, but Louisiana is red.  The GOP is counting it as a plus, never doubt it. 

In another post, Digby quotes Kurt Vonnegut, on the inner nature of the people who have their hands on the levers of our government now

I was once asked if I had any ideas for a really scary reality TV show. I have one reality show that would really make your hair stand on end: "C-Students frm Yale."

George W. Bush has gathered around him upper-crust C-students who know no history or geography, plus not-so-closeted white supremacists, aka Christians, and plus, most frighteningly, psychopathic personalities, or PPs, the medical term for smart, personable people who have no consciences.

To say somebody is a PP is to make perfectly respectable diagnosis, like saying he or she has appendicitis or athlete’s foot. The classic medical text on PPs is The Mask of Sanity by Dr. Hervey Cleckley, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the Medical College of Georgia, published in 1941. Read it!

Some people are born deaf, some are born blind or whatever, and this book is about congenitally defective human beings of a sort that is making this whole country and many other parts of the planet go completely haywire nowadays. These were people born without consciences, and suddenly they are taking charge of everything.

PPs are presentable, they know full well the suffering their actions may cause others, but they do not care. They cannot care because they are nuts. They have a screw loose!

And what syndrome better describes so many executives at Enron and WorldCom and on and on, who have enriched themselves while ruining their employees and investors and country and who still feel as pure as the driven snow, no matter what anybody may say to or about them? And they are waging a war that is making billionaires out of millionaires, and trillionaires out of billionaires, and they own television, and they bankroll George Bush, and not because he’s against gay marriage.

So many of these heartless PPs now hold big jobs in our federal government, as though they were leaders instead of sick. They have taken charge. They have taken charge of communications and the schools, so we might as well be Poland under occupation.

They might have felt that taking our country into an endless war was simply something decisive to do. What has allowed so many PPs to rise so high in corporations, and now in government, is they are so decisive. They are going to do something every fuckin’ day and they are not afraid. Unlike normal people, they are never filled with any doubts, for the simple reason that they don’t give a fuck what happens next. Simply can’t. Do this! Do that! Mobilize the reserves! Privatize the public schools! Attack Iraq! Cut health care! Tap everybody’s telephone! Cut taxes on the rich! Build a trillion-dollar missile shield! Fuck habeas corpus and the Sierra Club and In these Times, and kiss my ass!

This is why George Bush could strum a guitar while New Orleans died.  Last year, as the appalling scope of the disaster just kept getting more and more worse, and Brad DeLong was saying, astonished, "I really am naive. I did not expect this degree of unpreparedness and incompetence. I did not expect this even though I knew that the Bush administration is worse than you can imagine, even after having taken account of the fact that it is worse than you can imagine"…I wrote this:

For generations the Republicans have played Americans against one another. As government in the late 20th century began to acknowledge and protect the rights of minorities and women, the republicans began a concerted effort to deliberately weaken government, so it could no longer do that. An America that extends the promise of liberty and justice to all is anathema to them. For decades they poured billions of right wing dollars into a relentless campaign to convince Americans that greed is good, and that their worst prejudices were righteous. American self reliance became self interest. American independence became insularity. In pulpits all across America, the Jesus who taught us to love our neighbor was crucified as a communist and a pervert, and a new one who taught that might makes right was put in his place. The payoff came with the election of George Bush. The punch line came this week in New Orleans.

It isn’t that America can’t respond to the need of New Orleans as well as it can the need of those places destroyed by the Indian Ocean Tsunami…it’s that it isn’t supposed to. That’s what all the vitriolic rhetoric about "nanny government" means. A government that can wage a successful fight against civil chaos after a devastating natural disaster, can also prevent lynchings, wife beatings, and gay bashings. Government isn’t supposed to take care of the powerless, whether they’ve been rendered helpless by a hurricane, or by a lynch mob. Rights are for the powerful. To be able to just get on with your life is a privilege, not a right. That is George Bush’s America.

Somewhere in a corner of the putrid stench the Superdome has become, are the rotting corpses of two elderly New Orleans women, laying where their bodies were dragged to get them out of the way of the still living. Take your mental camera into the Superdome. Pan it across the trash littered bleachers, move down the aisles, through the suffocating stench of hundreds of backed up toilets and cardboard boxes full of human excrement. There…there they are…in that dark corner over there. Two pitiful little bodies you could almost mistake for just another random pile of trash. But they were people once. Your fellow Americans. Slowly zoom your mental camera in on that image. There is the America the republicans have been doggedly leading us to for decades now. There is what is inside the shining city on the hill.

 Mr. President…America is under attack…


Or…to put it in more concrete terms…

Frm the Associated Press:

NEW ORLEANS – Buses taking Hurricane Katrina victims far frm the squalor of the Superdome stopped rolling early Saturday. As many as 5,000 people remained in the stadium and could be there until Sunday, according to the Texas Air National Guard.

Officials had hoped to evacuate the last of the crowd before dawn Saturday. Guard members said they were told only that the buses had stopped coming and to shut down the area where the vehicles were being loaded.

"We were rolling," Capt. Jean Clark said. "If the buses had kept coming, we would have this whole place cleaned out already or pretty close to it."

Capt. John Pollard of the Texas Air Force National Guard said 20,000 people were in the dome when evacuation efforts began. That number swelled as people poured into the Superdome because they believed it was the best place to get a ride out of town.

He estimated Saturday morning that between 2,000 and 5,000 people were left at the Superdome. But it remained a mystery why the buses stopped coming to pick up refugees and shuttle them away.

Tina Miller, 47, had no shoes and cried with relief and exhaustion as she left the Superdome and walked toward a bus. "I never thought I’d make it. Oh, God, I thought I’d die in there. I’ve never been through anything this awful."

The arena’s second-story concourse looked like a dump, with more than a foot of trash except in the occasional area where people were working to keep things as tidy as possible.

Bathrooms had no lights, making people afraid to enter, and the stench frm backed-up toilets inside killed any inclination toward bravery.

"When we have to go to the bathroom we just get a box. That’s all you can do now," said Sandra Jones of eastern New Orleans.

Her newborn baby was running a fever, and all the small children in her area had rashes, she said.

At one point Friday, the evacuation was interrupted briefly when school buses pulled up so some 700 guests and employees frm the Hyatt Hotel could move to the head of the evacuation line – much to the amazement of those who had been crammed in the Superdome since last Sunday.

"How does this work? They (are) clean, they are dry, they get out ahead of us?" exclaimed Howard Blue, 22, who tried to get in their line. The National Guard blocked him as other guardsmen helped the well-dressed guests with their luggage.

The 700 had been trapped in the hotel, near the Superdome, but conditions were considerably cleaner, even without running water, than the unsanitary crush inside the dome…

Frm the Washington Post:

One military official said that as of Friday morning, 4,200 people had been evacuated, including 1,000 frm the convention center, where many times that number spent days without any aid and where several corpses lay on the street Thursday. Another military official said that commanders had not been aware of the large and desperate concentration of people at the convention center until Wednesday, that the focus had been on evacuating the Superdome and conducting other emergency operations in the city.

"It had not perhaps been raised to our consciousness by the reports we had received," Maj. Gen. Richard Rowe, the chief operations officer of the U.S. Northern Command, said in a phone interview.

By Friday night, the number of National Guard troops was expected to reach 11,700 in Louisiana and 8,000 in Mississippi, with more than 5,000 troops still to come over the weekend. Add to that more than 2,500 Coast Guard personnel on the scene with more than 50 aircraft. Four Coast Guard cutters are stationed in the Mississippi River to offer communications and logistics support, said U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman Sharon Richey. Even so, one frustrated state senator announced that he has lined up barges to float aid down the Mississippi River to stranded individuals…

As reports continued of famished and dehydrated people isolated across the Gulf Coast, angry questions were pressed about why the military has not been dropping food packets for them — as was done in Afghanistan, Bosnia and in the aftermath of the Asian tsunami.

Bill Wattenburg, a consultant for the University of California Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and one of the designers of the earlier food drop programs, said that he has lobbied the administration and the military to immediately begin something similar. He said he was told that the military was prepared to begin, but that it was awaiting a request frm FEMA.

"We know very well how to do this, and it’s just incomprehensible that we’re not," Wattenburg said.

Canaan Spriggs, 31, and his extended family, including three infants, again prepared to sleep on the floor of a nearby parking garage. He said he was pleased by the sight of the military convoys but that the city was far frm tame.

"It’s quiet now, but the night-time is wild," he said. "They’re sugarcoating it on the news. Come out here at night, but only if you have the National Guard with you. There are gunshots, and you hear people screaming for help.

Frm the Associated Press:

WASHINGTON – Several states ready and willing to send National Guard troops to the rescue in hurricane-ravaged New Orleans didn’t get the go-ahead until days after the storm struck — a delay nearly certain to be investigated by Congress.

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson offered Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco help frm his state’s National Guard on Sunday, the day before Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana. Blanco accepted, but paperwork needed to get the troops en route didn’t come frm Washington until late Thursday.

Frm CNN:

The big disconnect on New Orleans

The official version; then there’s the in-the-trenches version

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) — Diverging views of a crumbling New Orleans emerged Thursday, with statements by some federal officials in contradiction with grittier, more desperate views frm the streets. By late Friday response to those stranded in the city was more visible.

But the conflicting views on Thursday came within hours, sometimes minutes of each of each other, as reflected in CNN’s transcripts. The speakers include Michael Brown, chief of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Homeland Security Director Michael Chertoff, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, evacuee Raymond Cooper, CNN correspondents and others. Here’s what they had to say:

Conditions in the Convention Center

# FEMA chief Brown: We learned about that (Thursday), so I have directed that we have all available resources to get that convention center to make sure that they have the food and water and medical care that they need. (See video of Brown explaining how news reports alerted FEMA to convention center chaos. — 2:11)

# Mayor Nagin: The convention center is unsanitary and unsafe, and we are running out of supplies for the 15,000 to 20,000 people. (Hear Nagin’s angry demand for soldiers. 1:04)

# CNN Producer Kim Segal: It was chaos. There was nobody there, nobody in charge. And there was nobody giving even water. The children, you should see them, they’re all just in tears. There are sick people. We saw… people who are dying in front of you.

# Evacuee Raymond Cooper: Sir, you’ve got about 3,000 people here in this — in the Convention Center right now. They’re hungry. Don’t have any food. We were told two-and-a-half days ago to make our way to the Superdome or the Convention Center by our mayor. And which when we got here, was no one to tell us what to do, no one to direct us, no authority figure.

Uncollected corpses

# Brown: That’s not been reported to me, so I’m not going to comment. Until I actually get a report frm my teams that say, "We have bodies located here or there," I’m just not going to speculate.

# Segal: We saw one body. A person is in a wheelchair and someone had pushed (her) off to the side and draped just like a blanket over this person in the wheelchair. And then there is another body next to that. There were others they were willing to show us. ( See CNN report, ‘People are dying in front of us’ — 4:36 )

# Evacuee Cooper: They had a couple of policemen out here, sir, about six or seven policemen told me directly, when I went to tell them, hey, man, you got bodies in there. You got two old ladies that just passed, just had died, people dragging the bodies into little corners. One guy — that’s how I found out. The guy had actually, hey, man, anybody sleeping over here? I’m like, no. He dragged two bodies in there. Now you just — I just found out there was a lady and an old man, the lady went to nudge him. He’s dead.

Hospital evacuations

# Brown: I’ve just learned today that we … are in the process of completing the evacuations of the hospitals, that those are going very well.

# CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta: It’s gruesome. I guess that is the best word for it. If you think about a hospital, for example, the morgue is in the basement, and the basement is completely flooded. So you can just imagine the scene down there. But when patients die in the hospital, there is no place to put them, so they’re in the stairwells. It is one of the most unbelievable situations I’ve seen as a doctor, certainly as a journalist as well. There is no electricity. There is no water. There’s over 200 patients still here remaining. …We found our way in through a chopper and had to land at a landing strip and then take a boat. And it is exactly … where the boat was traveling where the snipers opened fire yesterday, halting all the evacuations. ( Watch the video report of corpses stacked in stairwells — 4:45 )

# Dr. Matthew Bellew, Charity Hospital: We still have 200 patients in this hospital, many of them needing care that they just can’t get. The conditions are such that it’s very dangerous for the patients. Just about all the patients in our services had fevers. Our toilets are overflowing. They are filled with stool and urine. And the smell, if you can imagine, is so bad, you know, many of us had gagging and some people even threw up. It’s pretty rough.(Mayor’s video: Armed addicts fighting for a fix — 1:03)

Violence and civil unrest

# Brown: I’ve had no reports of unrest, if the connotation of the word unrest means that people are beginning to riot, or you know, they’re banging on walls and screaming and hollering or burning tires or whatever. I’ve had no reports of that.

# CNN’s Chris Lawrence: Frm here and frm talking to the police officers, they’re losing control of the city. We’re now standing on the roof of one of the police stations. The police officers came by and told us in very, very strong terms it wasn’t safe to be out on the street. (Watch the video report on explosions and gunfire — 2:12)

The federal response:

# Brown: Considering the dire circumstances that we have in New Orleans, virtually a city that has been destroyed, things are going relatively well.

# Homeland Security Director Chertoff: Now, of course, a critical element of what we’re doing is the process of evacuation and securing New Orleans and other areas that are afflicted. And here the Department of Defense has performed magnificently, as has the National Guard, in bringing enormous resources and capabilities to bear in the areas that are suffering.

# Crowd chanting outside the Convention Center: We want help.

# Nagin: They don’t have a clue what’s going on down there.

# Phyllis Petrich, a tourist stranded at the Ritz-Carlton: They are invisible. We have no idea where they are. We hear bits and pieces that the National Guard is around, but where? We have not seen them. We have not seen FEMA officials. We have seen no one.


# Brown: I actually think the security is pretty darn good. There’s some really bad people out there that are causing some problems, and it seems to me that every time a bad person wants to scream of cause a problem, there’s somebody there with a camera to stick it in their face. ( See Jack Cafferty’s rant on the government’s ‘bungled’ response — 0:57)

# Chertoff: In addition to local law enforcement, we have 2,800 National Guard in New Orleans as we speak today. One thousand four hundred additional National Guard military police trained soldiers will be arriving every day: 1,400 today, 1,400 tomorrow and 1,400 the next day.

# Nagin: I continue to hear that troops are on the way, but we are still protecting the city with only 1,500 New Orleans police officers, an additional 300 law enforcement personnel, 250 National Guard troops, and other military personnel who are primarily focused on evacuation.

# Lawrence: The police are very, very tense right now. They’re literally riding around, full assault weapons, full tactical gear, in pickup trucks. Five, six, seven, eight officers. It is a very tense situation here.

Frm Maureen Dowd:

Shirt-sleeves rolled up, W. finally landed in Hell yesterday and chuckled about his wild boozing days in "the great city" of N’Awlins. He was clearly moved. "You know, I’m going to fly out of here in a minute," he said on the runway at the New Orleans International Airport, "but I want you to know that I’m not going to forget what I’ve seen." Out of the cameras’ range, and avoided by W., was a convoy of thousands of sick and dying people, some sprawled on the floor or dumped on baggage carousels at a makeshift M*A*S*H unit inside the terminal.

Michael Brown, the blithering idiot in charge of FEMA – a job he trained for by running something called the International Arabian Horse Association – admitted he didn’t know until Thursday that there were 15,000 desperate, dehydrated, hungry, angry, dying victims of Katrina in the New Orleans Convention Center.

Was he sacked instantly? No, our tone-deaf president hailed him in Mobile, Ala., yesterday: "Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job."

It would be one thing if President Bush and his inner circle – Dick Cheney was vacationing in Wyoming; Condi Rice was shoe shopping at Ferragamo’s on Fifth Avenue and attended "Spamalot" before bloggers chased her back to Washington; and Andy Card was off in Maine – lacked empathy but could get the job done. But it is a chilling lack of empathy combined with a stunning lack of efficiency that could make this administration implode.

Frm Steve Gilliard:

No matter how nervously Kanye West said what he did, it wasn’t some revealed truth, but a long assumed feeling. Bush doesn’t care about black people. No fucking kidding.

The problem is that he doesn’t care about anybody.

The fact that the citizens of New Orleans are now Aligator MRE’s is of concern to Bush, because it may make him look bad. But the world of George Bush is a narrow one, not much beyond his nose. Everything is about him.

Which is why he can praise Brown. Even the French fired Nivelle once he failed and replaced him with Petain. Bush only sees what affects him.


by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on Tales From George Bush’s America…Special Katrina Remembrance Edition

August 27th, 2006

Episode Seven…

In which I am busy drawing a certain foxy boy, while reassuring myself that I’m not really gay.  Nope.  Not me.

Click the panel above to see episode seven of A Coming Out Story, or click Here to go to the main page…


by Bruce | Link | React! (2)

August 25th, 2006

Tales From George Bush’s America…(continued)

Surprise, surprise…  They’re putting blacks in the back of the bus again here in America…

Black students ordered to give up seats to whites

COUSHATTA — Nine black children attending Red River Elementary School were directed last week to the back of the school bus by a white driver who designated the front seats for white children.

The situation has outraged relatives of the black children who have filed a complaint with school officials.


Superintendent Kay Easley will meet with the family members in her office this morning.

Easley would not comment much on the allegations Wednesday, saying it is a personnel issue. She acknowledged that she has investigated the claim. And she confirmed that the bus driver did not run her route Wednesday, nor would she today.

Asked if the driver would work for the rest of the year, Easley said, "I’m not going to answer the questions. "You’re getting all that you’re going to get from me. I’m sorry."

After Richmond and Williams [the parents of the children] filed complaints with the School Board, Transportation Supervisor Jerry Carlisle asked Davis to make seat assignments for her passengers, Sessoms [a relative] said.

"But she still assigned the black children to the back of the bus," she added.

And the nine children had to share only two seats, meaning the older children had to hold the younger ones in their laps.

A new solution reached Monday by School Board officials has a black bus driver driving across town to pick up the nine black children.

Dig it.  The new solution was to kick the black kids off the white lady’s bus altogether. 

It’s Louisiana and I’m not surprised.  I’ve driven from one end of this country to the other and Louisiana has always stood out in my remembrance for the level of openly in-your-face white racism I saw while I was there.  It’s a problem everywhere, but in Louisiana it was like stepping into a time warp, not just in terms of how often you saw it, but how they all seemed to accept it as a fact of life.  New Orleans was the exception to that.  Drive across the causeway into Covington and north and there might as well have never been a civil rights movement.  But in New Orleans itself, at least the parts I explored, you didn’t see that.  And that’s almost certainly why New Orleans is still a devastated ruin.  I’m convinced the rest of Louisiana was glad to see it go.

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on Tales From George Bush’s America…(continued)

August 24th, 2006

No More New Planets Until Further Notice
One thing we can say that this new definition of ‘Planet" does for us, is make it impossible for the foreseeable future to declare that we’ve discovered planets orbiting around other stars. Until we can know they’ve cleared their "neighborhood" we don’t know that they are planets.  So planet hunters will now have to call themselves something else.  Large Space Objects Of Indeterminate Classification hunters or something…

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on No More New Planets Until Further Notice

The Reason Why The Eight Stars Are No More Than Eight Is A Pretty Reason

Pluto gets demoted as astronomers approve new definition for planets

After a tumultuous week of clashing over the essence of the cosmos, the International Astronomical Union stripped Pluto of the planetary status it has held since its discovery in 1930. The new definition of what is – and isn’t – a planet fills a centuries-old black hole for scientists who have laboured since Copernicus without one.

The decision by the international group spells out the basic tests that celestial objects will have to meet before they can be considered for admission to the elite cosmic club.

For now, membership will be restricted to the eight "classical" planets in the solar system: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune.

Much-maligned Pluto doesn’t make the grade under the new rules for a planet: "a celestial body that is in orbit around the sun, has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a . . . nearly round shape, and has cleared the neighbourhood around its orbit."

Pluto is automatically disqualified because its oblong orbit overlaps with Neptune’s.

Instead, it will be reclassified in a new category of "dwarf planets," similar to what long have been termed "minor planets."

Can’t have those oddly orbiting sons of bitches prancing around in our gentlemen’s club.  By this definition there are no planets in any solar system until…what…billions and billions of years after all those frickin’ big ball shaped things we all used to think were planets formed?  Seems that way.  Earth, by this definition, was not a planet until sometime after, maybe sometime well after, the collision that many now think gave it its moon.  Jupiter was not a planet until after it had "cleared out" its orbit.  So what was it then?  A dwarf planet?  A Maybe It’ll Be A Planet Someday If Something Bigger Then Jupiter Doesn’t Come Along And Pulverize It Planet?  What the hell?

I’m sorry…this is a definition of planet written by people who seem to think every other solar system in the universe probably looks pretty much like this one. And never mind all those weirdly orbiting big honking planets we think we’ve detected around other stars out there.  Hey…maybe they’re fucking dwarf planets now too. By this new definition we cannot call any object we detect in orbit around any star besides our own a planet, since we don’t have the ability yet to see if they’ve "cleared out" their orbits or not.  And…when, exactly is an orbital neighborhood cleared out?  We would need to pin down the definition of that wouldn’t we, because that’s the precise moment when Dwarf Planet Jupiter, or Extra-Extra-Large Dwarf Planet Jupiter, or Soon To Become But Not Quite Yet Even Though It’s Probably Already Bigger Then Every Other Goddamn Not Exactly A Planet Yet Planet Jupiter became Real Planet Jupiter.

No.  No.  They just didn’t like the idea of that goddamn oddball Pluto being a planet.  It was too small, too odd, wandering too near the edge of that dark and eternal void we really don’t know crap about and nobody likes being discomforted by the strange and the unknown, especially astronomers.  So they wrote a new definition of ‘planet’ and now they don’t have to wonder what a planet is anymore, no matter how many oddballs the cosmos laughs at them with because they’ve settled all that.  "The reason why the seven stars are no more then seven is a pretty reason…"  Everything we discover as we explore other solar systems will fit neatly into our present model, which is not that much different from the one we had before Pluto was discovered in 1930, except that nobody is printing maps of the canals of Mars anymore.  How can so many people who look so deep into the universe so long be so goddamn provincial?  Maybe they’re not so backward in Kansas after all.

"It’s not safe out here. It’s wondrous, with treasures to satiate desires both subtle and gross. But it’s not for the timid."Q

[Update…]  Here’s the actual text of the new definition:
A planet is a celestial body that (a) is in orbit around the Sun, (b) has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a hydrostatic equilibrium (nearly round) shape, and (c) has cleared the neighbourhood around its orbit.
A dwarf planet is a celestial body that (a) is in orbit around the Sun, (b) has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a hydrostatic equilibrium (nearly round) shape, (c) has not cleared the neighbourhood around its orbit, and (d) is not a satellite.
Pluto is a dwarf planet by the above definition and is recognized as the prototype of a new category of trans-Neptunian objects.
All other objects orbiting the Sun shall be referred to collectively as "Small Solar System Bodies".
This is a definition that defines nothing.  What the fuck is "cleared the neighborhood around its orbit"?   These are weasel words.  What is "the neighborhood"?  What is "cleared"?  If Pluto is not a planet because it’s orbit crosses Neptune, then why isn’t Neptune also not a planet?  It hasn’t cleared it’s orbital "neighborhood" either then has it, because Pluto is still in it.  And if Pluto isn’t in Neptune’s Neighborhood then why is Neptune in Plutos?   This is crap.  The proposed definition they were having theological fits about for the past several days was more precise then this load of horseshit. 
If Pluto is the prototype of "dwarf planet" then what is the prototype of "planet"?  Jupiter?  Mercury?  Earth?
by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

August 23rd, 2006

Brother Mine…

…you’re such a dear!

ThankYouThankYouThankYouThankYouThankYouThankYou ThankYouThankYouThankYouThankYouThankYouThankYou

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on Brother Mine…

Ladies And Gentlemen…The President Of The United States…

Via Brad DeLong… Washington Whispers: Animal House in the West Wing: He loves to cuss, gets a jolly when a mountain biker wipes out trying to keep up with him, and now we’re learning that the first frat boy loves flatulence jokes. A top insider let that slip when explaining why President Bush is paranoid around women, always worried about his behavior. But he’s still a funny, earthy guy who, for example, can’t get enough of fart jokes. He’s also known to cut a few for laughs, especially when greeting new young aides, but forget about getting people to gas about that.

"He came in here and he trashed the place and it’s not his place."  -D.C. pundit David Broder, bloviating on the unacceptable personal behavior of…Bill Clinton. 

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on Ladies And Gentlemen…The President Of The United States…

For A Friend…

Some more postcards from my road trip this year…

The Leaning Tower Of Britten, Tx.


The Plains, East of Amarillo, Tx.


Surfers, Pismo Beach California.


Boy And Seagull, Pismo Beach California.


Surfers, Pismo Beach California.


Sunset, Pismo Beach California.


Inflatable Sheriff, Laramie Wyoming 


Colorado Plains, West of Lymon.


More later…


by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on For A Friend…

August 22nd, 2006

Yes James…I Too Long For The Days When I Could Be Burned To A Crisp In A Nuclear Firestorm At Any Moment

Via AmericaBlog, I see that right wing republican crackpot James Inhofe (r – Loonyville) longs for the good old days

Iraq, as Inhofe described it according to the Tulsa World, is a markedly different place than what the rest of the world seems to think it is:

Contrary to most reports, Inhofe said, many Iraqis are pleased about the U.S. intervention.

"Iraqi security forces now number 275,000 trained and equipped," he said. "The commanders in the field and the Iraqis say when this reaches 325,000, that would equal 10 divisions, and that’s what we need to take care of our own security."

Inhofe has visited Iraq 11 times.

"What’s happened there is nothing short of a miracle," he said.

Nevertheless, Inhofe said the current international situation makes him "wistful for the Cold War."

Understand…this babbling nutcase didn’t just live through the cold war, he is part of the generation that gave it to mine.  And you just know he was as much of a war hawk back then as he is now.  Wistful is he?  I’ll bet.  But the point of view of those who were wielding the nuclear bombs was a tad different from those of us who were being told that as long as we practiced our duck and cover drills everything would be okay…

Flashback: Rockville, Maryland – 1966

It is a warm sunny summer weekday.  I am 12 years old and school is out.  I have the whole day long (except for when I am in Vacation Bible School) to myself.  This day I’ve taken a walk down Rockville Pike to Children’s Supermarket, to check out the model car kit section, and then over the Congressional Plaza shopping center and the model car kit shelves at Kresge’s 5 and 10 cent store, and the G.C. Murphy’s.  There is a small toy section at the J.C. Penney’s store, but it never amounts to much so I seldom go there.  I have a routine.  First Children’s…then Kresge’s…then Murphy’s…then back home with a stop for a burger, fries and a shake at the McDonalds along the way, or the Minute Mart to get a Sprite and some candy, whatever trading cards I happen to be collecting at the time (I still have my complete collection of the first two James Bond sets), and maybe this month’s issue of Mad Magazine.

It is around 3 in the afternoon on a weekday, and when I get to Congressional Plaza it isn’t very crowded with shoppers.  There are just a few of us wandering the arcade.  There are cars in the big parking lot in front of the stores, but it isn’t even close to full.  I check the Kresge’s and then I am on my way down the arcade to Murphy’s.  My mind is off in some day dream somewhere.  Then I hear the civil defense siren at the front of the parking lot start revving up.

I’m here to tell you that unearthly sound from those Federal Signal Corporation Thunderbolts is something most of us of my generation will probably take to our graves.  It was an uncanny, wailing noise with a ragged buzzing undertone that pressed close to you, and faded into the distance, and then pressed close to you again as the horn rotated slowly around on top of its pole. 

In Maryland, in Montgomery County, every first Saturday of the month at 1 o:clock they’d test the damn things, and there was one on a pole just a hundred yards or so from the apartment my folks and I lived in.  The thunderbolts had this a big metal box at the base of the pole that housed an air compressor of some kind that you could hear kick on before the siren made any noise.  It would force air up a long stand pipe up to a square horn that looked like it had been stretched too thin at its base.  I later learned that the shape was deliberately designed to overload the horn’s throat and give it its weirdly distorted sound.  The horn would rev up to a loud ragged wail, rotating around 360 degrees for as long as it was on.  Then it would wind slowly down to a stop with a warbling dying noise that just sent chills through you.  The whole thing was painted bright Civil Defense yellow and mostly it just sat there quietly behind the apartments I lived in, giving me the creeps.

(An aside: It took me years to make the mental switch from associating the letters "CD" to compact music disks and not the logo for the Civil Defense bomb shelters and sirens that were everywhere.  AM radios back in that time had two frequencies marked with the "CD" logo on them, that you were supposed to tune to in case of a nuclear attack.  That was how I first learned to associate the letters "CD" with music.)

You could hear the sirens for miles and no matter you knew it was only a test, they still sent a slight chill through you whenever you heard them begin revving up.  There were two signals we’d been taught to listen for.  The long winding rev up to pitch, held for a long while, was the incoming attack signal.  It meant proceed to the nearest shelter, the bombs are on their way.  Then there was the one of my nightmares, the one that for some reason they only tested here in Maryland occasionally: a quickly repeating revving up and winding down of the siren, over and over again, up to pitch, back down, and then up again.  That was the imminent attack signal.  It meant the bombs are here, now, right now, take cover wherever you are. 

And…kiss your ass goodbye…  The joke among my friends was that Saturday at 1 o:clock would be the best time for the Russians to launch an attack, since nobody was likely to take the warning seriously then.  But it was one of those grim jokes that cold war kids tell each other.  We’d all done our duck and cover drills, and we all knew that as close to Washington D.C. as we were living, none of it likely mattered anyway.  If the a-bombs started falling, face it, we were all toast.

And there I am, one sunny summer weekday afternoon, a 12 year old kid out on a mission to find a model car kit, with perhaps a half dozen adults also shopping nearby, and we’re all walking down the arcade in front of the stores at Congressional Plaza, just strolling from one store to another, when this CD siren in the parking lot starts going off and it isn’t Saturday and it isn’t 1 o:clock in the afternoon…

I remember this vividly.  We all stop, dead in our tracks.  We look at the horn on its pole out there in the front of the parking lot.  We all kind of nervously look at each other.  One man sort-of shakes his head and sort-of laughs, and it is the most unconvincing laugh I’ve ever heard in my life.  And then we all go on about our business.

I go into the Murphy’s, walk the beaten path to the model car kits, check the inventory, and if the kit I am looking for that day is dancing on the shelves with a little squeal of delight at the sight of me I don’t notice it.  I remember what a friend of mine whose father works for the Atomic Energy Commission told me about what a nuclear attack would probably look like from our point of view.  "You’ll see the bright flash, but there won’t be any noise.  You’ll feel a flash of heat like a really intense flashbulb just went off right next to your skin.  Then you’ll see the tops of the trees in the distance catching fire…about a few seconds before the blast wave hits…"  I am stoically going on about the business I’d been about before the siren started going off and I am not paying the slightest bit of attention to what I am doing.  My eyes glance at boxes of model cars from Aurora, AMT, Revell and IMC while inside I am bracing myself for the bright flash.  I am thinking to myself, it’s probably a fluke…it’s probably a fluke…it’s probably a fluke…but inside I am bracing myself for the flash.  Nothing’s going to happen…nothing’s going to happen.  It’s just a fluke…it’s just a fluke…  All the adults around me are going on about their business too, but nobody is looking at anybody else. 

After a few minutes the siren goes silent.  I began walking back home.  After about an hour and not hearing the imminent attack signal, I began thinking it really might have been a fluke after all.  See?  See?  It wasn’t anything…  Just some malfunction…  A couple hours later and I am home again and I haven’t been burned to a crisp.  I am willing to let myself feel a tad relieved.  I sit down on the bed.  I notice that I am trembling.

There is a news report next day, about how some of the CD sirens had been switched on by accident.

Face it, if the a-bombs start falling, we’re all toast anyway…

Terrorism worries me, but it doesn’t scare the shit out of me either.  Terrorists disgust me more then I have the words to relate, but not nearly as much as the people who once thought that destroying nearly every living thing on planet earth was a moral, let alone a logical self defense plan.  And surprise, surprise, those are the exactly the same folks who are now busy thumping their chests trying to get world war III started in the middle east.  The Soviet Union is gone, and you work with what you have to work with I guess.  But some of us still remember what it was like to live under a real and not an imaginary threat of weapons of mass destruction, when the United States, and for that matter the whole goddamned world, really was at the brink of nuclear annihilation.  Maybe that’s why we aren’t jumping around every fucking time the republicans start ginning up a terrorist hysteria for votes.

You know what nothing short of a miracle is Inhofe?  Nothing short of a miracle is that there is still a world for all of us to live in despite the best efforts of your kind to drag us into nuclear war with the Soviets.  I still have dreams some nights, rarely now, but still, when I hear the sirens wailing out the imminent attack signal.  And you know what Inhofe…Fuck You.

[Edited a tad…] 

by Bruce | Link | React! (3)

On The Other Hand, Students In Young Earth Creationism Are More Then Welcome To Apply…

Via aTypical Joe…  That new federal grant program for students majoring in science, engineering, mathematics, and some foreign languages…?  Heh…well if your major is in the evolutionary sciences…forget it

Like a gap in the fossil record, evolutionary biology is missing from a list of majors that the U.S. Department of Education has deemed eligible for a new federal grant program designed to reward students majoring in engineering, mathematics, science, or certain foreign languages.

That absence apparently indicates that students in the evolutionary sciences do not qualify for the grants, and some observers are wondering whether the omission was deliberate.

The question arises at a time when evolution has become a political hot potato at all levels of education. While the theory of evolution has overwhelming support from scientists, some conservative Christian groups argue for alternative explanations of the origins of life, including "intelligent design," which holds that an intelligent agent guided the creation of life.

Joe explains that the grants are worth up to four-thousand dollars, and are awarded in addition to the Pell Grants.

The [Department of Education] has an index of classification numbers — referred to as "CIP codes," for the Classification of Instructional Programs — for all academic areas of instruction,

Under that classification scheme, there is a heading for "Ecology, Evolution, Systematics and Population Biology," under which 10 biological fields are defined. For instance, ecology is 26.1301, and evolutionary biology is 26.1303.

But on a list that defines majors eligible for the grants, issued by the department in May, one of those 10 is missing. On that list, the classification numbers rise in order from 26.1301 to 26.1309 — with the exception of a blank line where 26.1303, or evolutionary biology, would fall.

Tell me that’s not deliberate.  Go ahead.  Tell me that some Bush gang religious right policy wonk didn’t redline evolutionary biology from the list of eligible majors either because God told them to, or because Karl said it would keep the base happy.  I have a modest proposal.  If these kooks are that dead set against the study of evolution, they should all be willing to sign pledges stating that they will not partake of any medication or treatment of any kind, nor life enhancing technology, that was developed using evolutionary biology in some way, even if their doctors tell them it would mean saving their own lives.

But then…they don’t keep their own marriage or virginity pledges very well do they…

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on On The Other Hand, Students In Young Earth Creationism Are More Then Welcome To Apply…

I’ll Assume The Horrible Winters Have Something To Do With This…

Nude people in town center could prompt ban

BRATTLEBORO, Vt. – Complaints about young people who spend time in downtown naked have prompted the Select Board to explore an anti-nudity ordinance.

Groups of young people have been congregating in a downtown parking lot and enjoying the warm summer weather without clothing, and that bothers some local residents.

"A parking lot is not a strip club. It’s a parking lot," resident Theresa Toney told the Select Board last week. She said she has seen repeated instances of naked people hanging out downtown.

"This is a problem. What about children seeing this?" Toney asked.

Actually…I’ve always thought dolls without genitals were more likely to warp impressionable young minds.  But I digress…

Vermont has no law against nudity, though some cities and towns ban it by ordinance.

News that the Select Board had asked Town Attorney Robert Fisher to research a possible local ordinance drew a protest of sorts Friday, as five young men gathered downtown and stripped their clothes off in protest.

"There’s no real valid way to justify the banning of nakedness," said one of the men, Adhi Palar, between licks on his clarinet. "Nakedness does not violate any human rights whatsoever."

With no law to enforce, Police Chief John Martin was taking a laid-back approach.

"What’s the harm?" Martin asked. "It’s a problem to the extent that it bothers people, but we’ve always had it here."

"We get calls and we check out what’s going on. Even though there’s often no criminal violation, we want to be sure there isn’t a confrontation. Or that someone is not emotionally disturbed."

A criminal charge might result if the nudity is sexual in nature, with the purpose of "gratification or the intent of arousing oneself or another," Martin said.

Well…there go all my stereotypes about taciturn New Englanders.  You have to like the laid back approach the police are taking here.  I guess if I couldn’t step outside all winter long without looking like the Michelin tire man I might get a tad giddy in the summertime too.  I wonder if it’s a vitamin D craving or something…?

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on I’ll Assume The Horrible Winters Have Something To Do With This…

Pissing On Edward R. Murrow’s Grave…(continued)

So for some god forsaken reason I was watching the network news last night.  Oh…right…I know what it was.  I was watching for stories about that escaped convict that killed two people down in southern Virginia.  First of all I have family down there, but secondly the crime itself seemed just dumbfoundingly stupid.  Stupid beyond stupid being its own excuse.  Here’s this…kid, basically…who was in jail for attempted armed robbery, and he tries to escape and in the process kills two people and now he’s facing a death sentence.  Far as I could tell it was his first arrest so there was no "three strikes" kind of thing going on there.  What kind of drooling moron turns a few years in prison into an appointment with the gas chamber?  Making an escape attempt if the opportunity just threw itself at you I could see (it’s still dumb, but not catastrophically dumb), but when the guns come out, hey, just go quietly man.  It’s just attempted armed robbery.  Just do the fucking time and deal with it.  But no…and now he’s 24 and headed for death row.  So I was searching for any insight into this guy I could snatch from the news stream.  That’s why I happened to be watching CBS News last night…

…and among the stories Bob Schieffer read to me was a little nugget about the Jose Padilla case.  Padilla, you may recall, had been in a South Carolina brig for over three years as an ”enemy combatant”…an American citizen accused but never charged in the Bush administration way of doing things, of planning to set off a ”dirty bomb” somewhere in the U.S.  Padilla is one of the guys the Bush administration has been holding out as a reason for doing away with that troublesome bill of rights that gives aid and comfort to terrorists and liberals.  But rather then loose a fight over it in the supreme court before he could pack it with enough right wing lunatics who were willing to declare Bush King George The First, the Bush administration finally brought Padilla into court.  Schieffer casually informed me last night that the judge had thrown out one of the three counts against him.  And as I was busy searching for news about the Virginia killings, I casually shrugged off the story just as Schieffer did while he was reading it.

But…no…there was more to it…

Judge drops Padilla terror charge

MIAMI, Florida (CNN) — A federal judge in Miami on Monday dismissed a terror count against Jose Padilla, the U.S. citizen once identified as a "dirty bomb" suspect and detained as an "enemy combatant."

U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke said in a written opinion that the charge — conspiracy to "murder, kidnap and maim persons in a foreign country" — duplicated other counts in a federal grand jury indictment handed down last year.

"An indictment is multiplicitous when it charges a single offense multiple times, in separate counts," Cooke wrote. As charged, she added, the indictment exposes Padilla and his co-defendants to multiple punishments for a single crime.

The indictment, Cooke noted, "alleges one and only one conspiracy" and that the same facts are "re-alleged in each of the consecutive counts."

Cooke also ruled that a second count against Padilla and his co-defendants was "duplicitous" — charging them with the same offense under two sections of federal law. She ordered the government to choose between the two counts, which provide for different penalties, by Friday.

The counts in question are conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, and providing material support to terrorists.

The main terror charge against him was thrown out.  Not just …one out of three.  And…in case you haven’t been following this…remember that the accusation the Bush gang had been throwing around, that he was plotting to detonate a dirty bomb in the U.S., was never even part of the indictment.  So now it’s just two charges of conspiracy to support terrorists abroad, and get this, the charges are that he was involved in a plot for five years, and the other charge is that he was involved in Exactly The Same Plot, for 15 years. 

What the fuck?  I’m shocked that the Bush gang didn’t manage to find fifteen squared charges in that fifteen years of plotting to…er…support terrorists abroad.  Count one:  Padilla was involved in conspiracy ‘a’ for one year.  Count two:  Padilla was involved in conspiracy ‘a’ for two years. Count three: Padilla was involved in conspiracy ‘a’ for one year, and then again for one year more.  And so on until you get fifteen times fifteen counts against him that you can wave around as proof that the president needs more power then the constitution gives him, because these are very dangerous times.  What the judge said was, no…that’s all just one conspiracy.

I discovered what the implications of the ruling were not from CBS News, but via Americablog, which had a link to a Miami Herald article that gave me the details CBS News didn’t feel like I needed to have, and once again I hit the roof.  I hate those bastards.  I really hate them.  I used to watch the evening network news avidly.  I grew up watching Walter Cronkite, and Huntley and Brinkley.  Maybe it was just living in the Washington D.C. suburbs.  Maybe it was just the hungry curious about the world mind I always had.  But I had to have my news fix every day after dinner, even when I was an elementary school kid, and anxious to watch Astro Boy too when the news was over.  And now I can’t really bear to watch TV news anymore.  Why even bother, when I have to double check everything I hear them tell me anyway?

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on Pissing On Edward R. Murrow’s Grave…(continued)

And…Woman Why Aren’t You Wearing Your Burka…?

Is this what the faith I was raised in is coming to?  I guess…

Sunday School Teacher Fired For Being A Woman

First he dismissed 81-year-old Mary Lambert from the Diaconate Board of the First Baptist Church along with two members, claiming there were attendance issues.

Now the Rev. Timothy LaBouf has dismissed Mary Lambert as a Sunday School teacher for an adult class after she’s been on the job for over 50 years, claiming that his interpretation of the Bible is that a woman is prohibited from teaching men.

Lambert has been a church member for 54 years and a long time Sunday School teacher but got a letter dated Aug. 9 from LaBouf and the board saying that the Bible says a woman can perform any job, as long as its outside of the church.

LaBouf, who has been pastor at the church for about two years, and is also a member of the Watertown City Council, quotes the first epistle to Timothy which hold "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent".

Lambert received the letter signed by Kendra LaBouf, wife of the pastor. "A woman should learn in quietness and full submission" the letter said. "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became sinner".

Well…what the man does in his own church is his business I suppose…right?  I’m sure his knuckle dragging fundamentalist hatred for women won’t influence his decisions as a city councilman

The Rev. Timothy LaBouf, who also serves on the Watertown City Council, issued a statement saying his stance against women teaching men in Sunday school would not affect his decisions as a city leader in Watertown, where all five members of the council are men but the city manager who runs the city’s day-to-day operations is a woman.

Of course it won’t.

by Bruce | Link | Comments Off on And…Woman Why Aren’t You Wearing Your Burka…?

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