It takes a special kind of twisted mind to come up with the convoluted track with which Right Wingers and, specifically, the GOP presidential nomination contenders subject the public to deliver their messages of hysteria and hatred.
In last Sunday’s Manchester, New Hampshire debate, Newt Gingrich dismissed the significance of gay unions by claiming that gay couples are “just friends.” He went on to say while “…we want to make it possible to have those things that are most intimately human between friends, it is a huge jump from being understanding and considerate and concerned, which we should be, to saying we therefore are going to institute the sacrament of marriage as though it has no basis,”
,Keep in mind that Newt Gingrich has been married three times with serial adulterous affairs signalling the culmination of each previous marriage. I guess if that kind of intimacy between unmarried friends is good enough for Newt, he’s okay with allowing it for less-than-whole deviants. If they have to.
Gaud, these guys make me tired.
Not that it’ll make an impression, but it’s pretty important to remind these guys that LGBTs don’t want the approval of straight people, nor do we want their validation. We just want their hands off our lives and their noses out of our business. Nobody among the LGBT community is asking for a sacrament. That’s church stuff. Marriage equality is about secular contracts between 2 (Two! count ‘em: 2) consenting adults and full government acknowledgement of same, accompanied with equal protection under the law. You know, like it says in the Constitution. We are all understanding and considerate over the fact that haters like Newt Gingrich are entitled to their selfish opinions. And, heaven knows we’re concerned about the effect their disproportionate political power has over innocent families who would like nothing better than to carry on without the traditional impediments making our social and private lives a gantlet to be eternally endured. But, frankly, we’re pretty tired of the endless imposition of haters’ religiously motivated, false sacraments of gratuitous “righteousness” against us.
Double standard alert: If marriage is so sacred, how come he’s had three?
I agree about the one man and one woman…at a time. Just like it’d be one man and one other man, or one woman and one other woman, at a time. And, he’s calling the Obama administrations evolution on the subject, which is lately leaning more and more toward support of marriage equality biased and bigoted.
Double speak alert! Newt thinks inclusion, diversity and equality are biased and bigoted.
Tired. They make me oh-so-weary and tired.
Speaking of evolution, this week’s debate also signalled the most generous terms from Rick Santorum who now says gays may adopt in states that allow such a thing but only if nobody else but gay couples are available to adopt. But, they still can’t be married and therefore must be denied any protections, supports or helping-hand gestures afforded real married couples by the government. I mean, hell, it’s their own fault for being free enough to make the wrong choice and not marry someone of the opposite sex, welfare of the children involved be damned.
More of religion motivated, righteous double standard.
The previous week, before a gathering called the College Convention 2012 in New Hampshire, Santorum was asked why he didn’t think equality mandates allowing same sex couples to marry were valid. Never one to give a simple answer and move on when pressed on this socially pivotal issue, he countered with the question, “Don’t you have to make the positive argument why the law should be changed?” Uhm…let me think. How about: 1) Free Speech, 2) Equal Protection under the law, 3) Association, 4) Privacy 5) Separation of Church & State. The law as it stands is unConstitutional. Well, the students responded with points about the morality of denying equal rights. Like building a bridge, he posited, you have to have a reason to build it. Most of what same sex couples want is already available through private contract.
Uhm…no. Why should anybody have to jump through hoops to realize Constitutionally guaranteed rights, especially when other people are encouraged to embrace those rights without any impediment?
What about happiness, they asked. He countered, “If you’re not happy unless you’re married to five other people, is that O.K.?”
The audience didn’t like that. He got booed. In true paternalistic fashion, he admonished them with, “I’m happy to engage in a discussion,” explaining that he wanted to “give people a chance to answer, but we’re going to have a civil discussion.”
Double Standard Alert: Frothy Rick can say whatever the hell provacative inanity he likes, including vilifying innocents, overt oppression of minorities and denying rational equality, but being challenged on those counts is uncivil.
The woman who asked the question chastised the former Senator, pointing out that opposing marriage equality with questions about polyamory, pedophilia and beastiality are irrelevant. Pressing on, Santorum added, “What about three men?”
“That’s not what I’m talking about,” she said. In the end, after about 80 minutes with the crowd, many of the students booed him as he excused himself for his next appointment.
On all accounts, Rick Santorum is just plain wrong. Gratuitously, myopically, impenetrably, obstinately wrong. It is unconscionable to deny others rights one holds for ones self. Santorum would amend the Constitution to cement his religiously “righteous” prejudice in law. His slippery-slope challenge is irrelevant non sequitur. Recognizing LGBT equal rights does not in any way lead to polyamory, incest, beastiality or any of the other hair brained, be-very-afraid horror fantasies self anointed elites like Santorum and the rest of the regressive religious right engage in.
The issue is emotional, they’ll say, and complicated. The implication is that it’s too deep an issue, too intractible a conundrum to solve without returning gays to social invisibility, banished to irrelevance. Safe, quiet, out of the way, out of sight, out of mind. Such hogwash. There isn’t any depth to the issue beyond whether or not ours is a nation founded upon equal protection under the law. Religious implications are irrelevant. Religion has no place in civil law and accomodation for them is Constitutionally inappropriate. Marriage equality doesn’t redefine anything, and indeed would return same sex unions to their previous historical position of inclusion as when even the Catholic church celebrated same sex unions, revering such unions’ members so highly they canonized at least one same sex couple together for their recognized good deeds.
But, then, that would be in recognition of factually accurate history and not the picked and chosen stories more convenient to Newt or Rick’s double speak, double standards.
© 2012 Nathan Garcia. All International Rights Reserved
The audience didn’t like that. He got booed. In true paternalistic fashion, he admonished them with, “I’m happy to engage in a discussion,” explaining that he wanted to “give people a chance to answer, but we’re going to have a civil discussion.”
Why are the People at OWS so Angry? This seems to be the topic du jour of the mainstream media. What is their message and why are they so angry? As Think Progress notes, the government has seen it fit to arrest over 1,000 Americans for having the gall to protest Wall Street and the kleptocracy that our country has become. In that time, bankers continue to avoid any punishment. Raj Rajaratnam, a banking executive recently sentenced to eleven years in prison for insider trading that profited $3 Billion for his company, has been the lone example of any accountability. What’s shocking is that there aren’t more people in the street.
Occupy Wall Street Protesters are Really Conservative And then you have tone-deaf statements like this… The conservative think tank the American Enterprise Institute put out a statement claiming that the Occupy Wall Street protesters were all really conservative, they just don’t know it. Yes, the main tenants that have been espoused by the General Assembly are: true universal health care, punishing banks accordingly for their recklessness that has resulted in the 2008 economic crisis, and legislation that would turn the tide of climate change? If those are what conservatives want to accomplish, then hell… I think I’m a conservative!
Climate Change Poses Immediate Threat to Health Climate experts met in London to discuss upcoming crises that might be on the horizon in the wake of climate change, and released a chilling report. Without radical reductions in carbon emission, climate change will result in more extreme weather conditions. These will spread infectious diseases more quickly, destroy habitats and cause water and food shortages – which might spur mass migration and conflict. As these events become more and more apparent, it’s infuriating that our political system is both unable and unwilling to undertake the necessary changes to help delay or stop the impending calamity.
Lifting the Curtain on GOP’s War on Unions Mike Huckabee, in a speech in front of an anti-union crowd, dropped the subterfuge and explained the real reason that the GOP is viciously attacking unions. He referred to the union-stripping bills that exist in one form or another in several states as ‘deflating the tires’ of Democrats. He was stumping in Ohio to defeat a repeal of Ohio’s anti-union bill, agreeing with a suggestion to give the wrong election date to those who don’t agree with them, ‘whatever you have to do,’ Huckabee said. Sigh. Well, if you can’t win the debate on the merits… lying is all you can do.
Majority Support for Marijuana Legalization For the first time since polling on the subject began, a majority of Americans are in favor of the legalization of marijuana. 50 percent of Americans were in favor in Gallup’s poll, while 46 were opposed. In this post, a graph tracks previous percentages going back to the seventies. It’s really quite amazing how this issue has evolved. Especially with these huge budget gaps at both a federal and state level, marijuana looks more and more appealing as a new commodity to tax.
Alabama to Criminalize Abortion Yes, this headline seems wrong. Wouldn’t criminalizing abortion violate Roe v. Wade and thus be unconstitutional? Yes, yes it would. It doesn’t appear to be stopping them. Alabama has a ballot measure before voters that would define personhood as the moment of fertilization. This would make abortion and most forms of contraceptive (including the pill) murder. I would say that this has no chance of passing, but I will never underestimate the ability of the majority to vote to strip rights away from the minority. This measure is disgusting and completely illegal. Look at the picture in the post, the sign that the supporters are holding state that they want to stop both abortion and cloning. Yup, at least they’ve got their priorities in order.
Thanks for reading and staying informed! Keep reading The Progressive Playbook and come back tomorrow for another Daily News Drop.
Sources: Salon, Think Progress, The Washington Post, Raw Story, Mother Jones, Fire Dog Lake, MSNBC
Occupy Wall Street
Police Arrest 80 at Protest The Occupy Wall Street Protest, that has entered its ninth day, has been a dynamic event that obviously has staying power. With many disparate motives behind the protest (but the common factor being a general displeasure with the direction that Wall Street has steered the nation), it was unclear whether this protest would last that long at all. To this point, the police have arrested 80 people as a tactic to dampen the spirits of the protesters. It has been unsuccessful to this point.
Hedges: “Hope of America Lies with Protest” Chris Hedges, noted liberal scholar and reporter, stated in an interview that he thought the Occupy Wall Street protest was “really where the hope of America lies.” He went even further to say that the protesters should be described as Conservatives, because they are protesting against the radical changes instituted by the wealthy. A movement like this needs positive publicity like this, and not like…
NY Times: Protest Misguided The New York Times was much less flattering of the movement. The mood of the protest leans more than a little on the silly. Instruments are used often and activities like ‘protest yoga’ have been planned. The Times takes these examples as reasons to call the protest itself misguided. Let’s be honest, progressive protests are almost always weakened by jumbled messaging and infighting, but the fact that these protesters were willing to take action against such a powerful target should inspire us to plan and enact more and bigger protests, not be seen as a failure.
Herman Cain Wins Florida Straw Poll… For Some Reason For weeks, the GOP race has been a two horse race between Mitt Romney and Rick Perry. Then, at the next ‘most important poll in the world,’ (The Florida Straw Poll) both lose to Herman Cain. The Pizza Guy. To be fair, Michele Bachmann won the last straw poll in Iowa. Voters have to pay to cast a vote, so the democratic process is weird to say the least. Still, the GOP race is quite a mess, and racists might not have anyone to vote for in the 2012 election… so there’s that.
GOP Jobs Disconnect Florida Gov. Rick Scott is guilty of what so many GOP politicians have been guilty of in these tough economic times. They harp on unemployment as a horrible thing that is entirely the fault of Democrats, all while they strip the federal governments of as many jobs as they can. They see no hypocrisy in this. Rick Scott decried the high unemployment in Florida while he (single-handedly) laid off 15,000 government workers. Really?
A Reasoned Look at Race’s Role in 2012 Election Melissa Harris-Perry wrote an interesting piece for The Nation positing that the large drop of support that Barack Obama has withstood from white Americans has a lot to do with race. She bases this on the fact that Bill Clinton received nearly the same percentages of support from all demographics in his re-election even though he had fewer legislative accomplishments than Obama. I don’t think I buy it – we have very high unemployment, our media is a completely different beast than it was in 1996 (There is a robust liberal blogosphere now and not just a right wing noise machine), among many other factors.
Unrest in Yemen Might Lead to Power Shift Violence has been raging in Yemen since the Arab Spring began, with the Yemeni President (Ali Abdullah Saleh) refusing to relinquish power. Saleh has now allowed early elections, which seem to be the first sign in a potential power shift. Now if we could only coax Syria into the same situation…
And we conclude our post with a happier story to lighten the mood…
Barcelona Bans Bullfighting With the last bullfight in Catalonia for the 2011 season, a ban on the sport was enacted in the region of Spain. Reactions have been mixed – 180,000 individuals signed the petition which led the legislature to pass the ban. Though the last season sold out the arena (20,000 seats) to watch the killing of six half-ton bulls. I think this is a great sign. The ‘sport’ itself glorifies death and the slaughtering of animals. This is a victory in the war on animal cruelty.
Thanks for reading and staying informed! Keep checking back to The Progressive Playbook for more insightful progressive commentary as well as more Daily News Drops!
Sources: The Raw Story, The New York Times, Talking Points Memo, Think Progress, The Nation, Al Jazeera English, BBC News
A Little Pot is Ok In a little bit of local news for myself, it seems the Police Commissioner has instructed New York City police officers to lay off the pot arrests if the pot in question is a small amount and not in public view. Not that this is any major victory, it’s a little step in the right direction perhaps. I guess they’d like to take more time keeping their off duty police officers from raping women on the street.
Bristol Palin = Classy Lady While this isn’t exactly news, it’s a great look into the world of Bristol Palin, and just one more reason why her mother should stay far, far away from the White House.
Gay Soldier Booed By now we all know that at the latest Republican debate, a gay soldier asking a question of the candidates was booed by the audience. Why are Democrats constantly crucified for not being patriotic enough, but Republicans can OPENLY boo a soldier, just because they’re gay? Anyway, GOP candidates have started (24 hours later) distancing themselves from those who booed the soldier; of course, this is after the backlash from the general population. Good for them…. I guess.
Mississippi’s Personhood Amendment In a story that, surprisingly, hasn’t gotten much national attention, Mississippi is trying to pass an amendment that would declare an embryo to be a “person” at the time of conception, outlawing abortion in any case, with NO exceptions for rape, incest, or the life of the mother. This would also threaten the morning after pill, and based on definition, even possibly threaten birth control. I will never understand how a clump of cells, or even a fetus, or even an unborn baby (if you consider it a baby) is more important than already existing, fully formed daughters, wives, and mothers.
The Lost Generation As somebody who fits into the age group now being considered “The Lost Generation,” I’ll admit, I’m a little terrified for the future. We’re being told to lobby Congress to get them to pay attention to the issues of future generations, but my question is, why? Why should we beg Congress to fix the country so we can have a better life than what is being predicted if we continue on this current trajectory. THIS article from The Atlantic details why we may be the most current “lost generation,” and how we might be able to recover.
Vote Against the Tea Party This is a pretty good list of why the Tea Party should be avoided at all costs, and has just the right amount of snark.
Congress Cares That’s why we’re staring at another potential Government shutdown! Of course, they’ll decide last minute that they can bang out a “deal” (give the Republicans everything they want) but in the process, jeopardize our nation’s awful economy and world standing even further. Barack Obama gets way too much credit for hurting our economy – Congress seems to enjoy making our country and it’s citizens suffer.
Well that was an uplifting glimpse at the Friday’s news… please come back later for the Saturday edition of the Daily News Drop!
Sources: wnyc.com, Gawker, Gothamist, thehill.com, The Huffington Post, NationalJournal.com, The Atlantic, Sun-Sentinel.com, CNN
Troy Davis EDIT: As I’m typing, the Supreme Court is trying to decide whether Troy Davis will die tonight.
For some reason, the state of Georgia has decided to kill Troy Davis, whether he’s guilty or not. Despite mounting evidence that, at the very least, sheds DOUBT upon the guilty verdict, the state has rejected every single appeal, request for stay of execution, and now, even rejected a polygraph test. They want to kill him reeeeeally badly, apparently. Welcome to the United States of America.
A Palestinian State? I have yet to have anybody give me a decent reason for why the Palestinians should not have their own state. Israel was created by the United Nations, and they’ve been taking land from the Palestinians for years, so I really don’t understand what the issue is. I do understand that the supposed “better” route to take would be directly through peace talks with Israel, but Bebe will NEVER let that happen.
Ron Paul’s Dead Staffer Apparently, the Ron Paul Staffer who died, leaving his family with $400k worth of medical bills because of his lack of insurance (due to a pre-existing condition), was a victim of the Government. According to Ron Paul, it’s the Government’s fault that doctors and private insurance companies charge so much money for treatment. He, however, completely ignores the fact that this man wasn’t able to have access to insurance because of his condition, and, of course, fails to acknowledge that the man was working for him when he died. Employer based health care? WHAT’S THAT?!
DADT Ending Bittersweet Past service members who were discharged under or served during “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” are feeling a little bittersweet over the end of DADT, and with good reason. It must be really difficult to watch somebody be able to be themselves when you had to live a lie simply because people finally got around to ending a policy that shouldn’t have existed in the first place. Nevertheless, we should celebrate its demise, and remember and thank all for their service, discharged or not under that horribly misguided, discriminatory program.
Santorum Rick Santorum has been complaining about the less-than-savory definition that comes up in Google when you search for his name (thanks to former roommate, Dan Savage). However, “Google’s rankings were declared ”opinions” protected by the 1st Amendment in a 2003 Federal court ruling. Google literally is of the opinion that Rick Santorum is a gross anal byproduct and there’s nothing he can do about it.” This may be an immature story, but it’s hilarious. Enjoy it!
Class Warfare Democrats are actually fighting back (a little bit) against the Republicans’ ridiculous claims that Barack Obama has been engaging in “class warfare.” If class warfare is telling the truth about what the Republicans have done to the middle class and below in this country, then yes, I suppose the President is armed and dangerous.
FBI Teaching Bigotry This is an article I meant to post days ago. New documents reveal that the FBI was training Counterterrorism Agents to actually BE Islamophobic. They were “being taught that “devout” Muslims are more likely to be “violent” and that American Muslims are likely to be terrorist sympathizers.” That’s just wonderful. How can we possibly expect our country to “recover” from 9/11 or even just not be a bunch of light skinned bigots if our Federal Bureau of Investigation officers are perpetuating that bigotry and stereotypes?! We can’t. We have, however, been assured that this type of training is no longer happening; I’m sure they’re scapegoating somebody though!
Jane Lynch Just because I love Jane Lynch. Watch it!
Everybody have a fantastic evening, and see you tomorrow for more of the Daily News Drop!
Sources: The Washington Post, CNN, Talking Points Memo, Gawker, The Huffington Post, Think Progress
Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Officially Ends After a completely unnecessary waiting period, the military’s Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy toward Gay soldiers has officially ended. And the world didn’t end. Really, it didn’t. Dan Choi, who was discharged from the military under the policy and became one of DADT’s most outspoken critics, has stated that he intends to re-enlist. Congratulations Dan, I met the man a couple years ago and I can say that he deserves this happy ending. Now if we can just end these illegal wars…
Miscarriage of Justice: Troy Davis to be Killed Today, the Georgia Board of Parole and Pardons ignored severe doubts raised about the conviction of Troy Davis and the hundreds of thousands of petitions sent on Troy’s behalf and ruled that he shall be executed at 7:00pm tomorrow. This case is a clear example of why the death penalty is barbaric and why it should be eliminated. Its permanence eliminates any chance of righting wrongful convictions. The editors of the Nation have written a concise piece on what this case says for our nation in regards to the death penalty.
U.S. Building Massive Prison in Afghanistan Barack Obama wanted to close Guantanamo Bay. Or at least he said he did. But he didn’t. Not only that but he used a prison in Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan to continue the massive incarceration of ‘terrorists.’ Now, with austerity on the tongues of all the politicians in Washington, and surefire domestic cuts on the horizon, the Obama Administration solicited bids for the construction of a massive new prison at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan. This project will cost between $25 million and $100 million dollars.
Because of Wikileaks, Al Jazeera Replaces Top News Director During the run up to the Iraq war, the Bush Administration demonized the Arabic news station Al Jazeera to the point of calling them terrorist sympathizers. Because of a disclosure by Wikileaks, we now know that the Top News Director at Al Jazeera (Wahad Khanfar) changed the coverage of the network because of the U.S.’s pressure. Because of this clear example of the breach of impartiality, Al Jazeera has replaced Khanfar. This is why entities like Wikileaks are vital. It helps keep everyone honest.
The GOP’s War on Pleasure Great commentary by Digby on a statement by a Texas GOP representative Wayne Christian claiming that there was a legitimate war on birth control across the country. It moves beyond just birth control – it is a war on pleasure, and the pleasure of women in particular.
A Primer on Why you Should Care About the Horn of Africa Famine I know, you haven’t heard this on the mainstream media, but thousands are dying in the Horn of Africa due to a horrific drought and subsequent famine. This famine is worse than the one that Somalia experienced in 1992 that killed 300,000. Read this in depth primer and tell your friends. More people need to know that 12 million people in the region are at risk of starvation. Also, climate change deniers, does this count as extreme weather that might have been caused by climate change?
Shocker: Mainstream Media Ignores the Left Michael Moore went on The Rachel Maddow Show yesterday to talk about the recent liberal protests around the country. The #OccupyWallStreet protest and the Keystone XL Pipeline protests in DC where more than 1,000 individuals were arrested to show opposition to the proposed oil pipeline were discussed in detail. Moore made a cogent point – isn’t it strange that a supposedly liberal media would largely ignore these protests? If 1,000 Tea Partiers were arrested in protest a year ago, we’d still be talking about it today.
To end the post, we conclude with two happier stories to lighten the mood…
Elizabeth Warren Leads Scott Brown in Polls Elizabeth Warren trailed Senator Scott Brown by 9 points when she announced her intention to run for U.S. Senate in Massachusetts. As of today, she has a 2 point lead. This is great news. It remains to be seen whether one Senator can actually make a difference in our political system, but all I can say is that Ted Kennedy’s old seat could do a whole lot worse than Elizabeth Warren.
Cornhuskers Fans Chop-Block Pipeline As a Nebraska fan, I was delighted to see the school highlighted by Dave Zirin. The fanbase, without any organizing, were able to deal a symbolic blow to TransCanada, the corporation who will be building and running the transnational pipeline that will pump the Tar Sands from Alberta through Nebraska to the Gulf of Mexico. The story is great, so read Zirin’s post and enjoy!
Thanks for reading and staying informed! Keep checking back to The Progressive Playbook for wonderful progressive commentary and more Daily News Drops!
Sources: The Huffington Post, The Nation, Salon, The New York Times, Digby’s Hullabaloo, Mother Jones, The Raw Story, Firedoglake, Edge of Sports