Monday, April 30, 2012

Marriage News Watch: April 30, 2012


Pass the Ammunition

If it wasn't official before, it is now: Bryan Fischer is making Hannibal Lecter look sane.

The Wrap-Up: April 30, 2012

In news that makes me happy I didn't go to a religious school, a student is being kept from graduating from Bob Jones University because he was caught watching Glee.

Here is the rundown of what you need to know about CISPA (which passed in the House and, as reported earlier, faces a veto threat from President Obama).

Wondering what the Tea Party is up to?

The price of homophobia keeps getting tragically higher.

Some Wisconsinites need to pick their heroes more carefully.

Here in Virginia's Senate race, former Governor Tim Kaine is relying very much on former Governor (and current Senator) Mark Warner in his fight against former Governor (and former Senator) George Allen.

The fact that violence against women was such a partisan issue does not speak well for the Republican Party.

And lastly, with their secrecy exposed, ALEC may be on the brink of destruction. One can only hope.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Tweet of the Day: April 27, 2012

Yet again, I had two that I couldn't decide between.



Lowlights & Highlights: April 28, 2012

This is one of the most despicable things I have ever heard said by a politician...which is saying a lot (especially these days). During a session of the state legislature, state Representative Jeremy Faison (R-TN) stated that the suicides of bullying victims was not because of bullying. Rather, he said it was the fault of bad parenting and improper values. When I learned about this, my head nearly exploded. There are so many ways in which this statement is beyond the pale, but I'll just point out the glaring ones:

-First, ignorance. How many parents of bullying/suicide victims does this guy actually know? To how many of these parents has he spoken? My guess as to the answers to both of these questions is ZERO. He was making a generalization based on speculation rather than an "educated" guess based in fact. 

-Second, what we have here is a clear lack of empathy. If he had put himself in the shoes of these parents, he would have known not to say such a thing. had a child of his committed suicide (for any reason, let alone bullying specifically) and someone told him it was his fault, his reaction would most likely be extreme anger, extreme sadness, or both. 

-Third (and most obvious), it's just plain heartless. These parents are going through something that no one can possibly fathom unless they have experienced first hand. Then for Faison to point to them and say "It's your fault your kid is dead?" It's just an utterly soulless thing to say. I truly have no idea how people like this come to political power and stay there after such an incident. If he had any honour, he would resign.

Faison has since apologized for the statement. I tend to not believe such "apologies" because it is clear that the reason for these apologies has more to do with public backlash and less to do with sincere regret. While I don't know what is in this man's heart, the callousness of the original statement requires him to go further to deserve the benefit of a doubt.

***

After a disastrous primary day this week, it was announced that Newt Gingrich would be exiting the race. For some reason that I still don't understand, he is leaving the race next week despite his departure being announced this week. That's the first thing I don't get. The second (which I've been thinking about for some time now) is why he didn't get out earlier. My best guess is his ego. He only won one state, and one of those was his home state, Georgia, so that barely counts. I can understand why Santorum stayed in as long as he did, but not Gingrich. Maybe if he had dropped out earlier, Santorum would have ended up doing better.

Gingrich's candidacy was at best a joke, at worst a poor indictment on the Republican Party based on some of the things he said. He advocated for children being janitors. There was a video of someone telling Newt that he was a joke, a disgrace, and he should get out of the race before he makes a fool of himself (advice that was not heeded until it was too late). He made a campaign point of talking about permanent Moon colonies (unsurprisingly, that was him pandering before the Florida primary). He went on-record as saying that child labour laws were unconstitutional. As one of his opponents pointed out (I believe it was Santorum) that he was run out of the Speakership by members of his own party. Not exactly the kind of leadership one would want in their party's nominee for the presidency, let alone the presidency itself. And then there is my major personal gripe that he has the audacity to talk about the sanctity of marriage while being married to wife #3 (with whom he cheated on wife #2, with whom in her turn he cheated on wife #1). He's unscrupulous, pretentious, self-righteous, and hypocritical. Wait a minute, that should have made Gingrich the perfect GOP candidate.

Farewell Newt. We won't miss you (apparently that includes many of your fellow Republicans).

The Wrap-Up: April 27, 2012

The Republican Party is looking at Senator Marco Rubio of Florida as the savior to deliver them the Latino vote, which may not be a good (or even possible) idea.

House Republicans are so Hell-bent on renegging on the debt deal reached last year that they are willing to shut down the government and let kids go hungry to get what they want. What a faithless/heartless lot.

You know how right-wingers are always claiming gay people are trying to "indoctrinate" kids into homosexuality? Well, guess who is REALLY indoctrinating who.

The Marine who was discharged for comments he made about President Obama (i.e. the Commander-in-Chief) sounds off on the incident.

A poll from Pew Research Center shows a nice uptick in support for marriage equality over the last four years.

Social media may be the key may be the key to defeating North Carolina's homophobic Amendment 1. Remember to spread the word about ALL of the damaging affects of this amendment. Early voting has already begun and Election Day is May 8.

As into politics as I am, the idea that the 2016 race has already begun is just daunting. First speculation about Rick Santorum for the GOP, now speculation about Hillary Clinton for the Democrats.

President Obama has issued a veto threat against CISPA.

The victim of a brutal homophobic hate crime at Illinois State University is heroically defiant.

And lastly, let's take a look back at Newt Gingrich's best (read: worst) hits during his presidential run.



Thursday, April 26, 2012

Romney's Lies on Obama's Foreign Policy


The Wrap-Up: April 26, 2012

Newt Gingrich will officially exit the presidential race next week. Hopefully this won't result in him cheating on wife #3 (assuming he hasn't already).

A Marine sergeant was discharged over Facebook comments about President Obama (a.k.a. his boss more-or-less).

House Republicans are going to extreme measures to protect tax cuts for millionaires...like letting hundreds of thousands of kids go hungry. And people are still voting for these people because...?

A Virginia legislator associated with ALEC tries to take a pot-shot at a fellow Virginian...which doesn't go as he expected.

Dr. Robert Spitzer has written an apology to the gay community for the article he published a decade ago saying that ex-gay "therapy" was valid. Given the crap apologies that the LGBT community has gotten in the past, let me say that this was a true apology.

Hudson Taylor, founder of Athlete Ally and all-around awesome person, thinks it would be a great idea to implement an equality index for professional sports franchises. I'll go on record as supporting this idea.

Tony Perkins, president of the so-called Family (read: homophobic) Research Council, has come out of the closet...as a Birther.

That anti-gay Facebook group that I mentioned earlier this week has apparently disbanded...or slunk into the shadows only to reappear in another guise. Only time will tell.

A reminder that if you, or anyone you know, is a North Carolina citizen, make sure you/they are informed about Amendment One. It affects more than just the LGBT community and has disastrous consequences on many other groups of people. Early voting has already begun and the polls will be open on May 8 (less than 2 weeks away). Get on the horn folks.

And lastly, who wants to mine a meteor?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Anne Hathaway on LGBT Support


H/t Wipe Out Homophobia

CISPA Destroys the Constitution

The Wrap-Up; April 25, 2012

Yesterday was primary day in several states, but no one really cares at this point, so let's move on.

Missouri teachers are speaking out against the state's proposed "Don't Say Gay" bill.

Pat Robertson has done the unthinkable: he has condemned anti-gay bullying. The end of the world is indeed nigh.

With less than two weeks until North Carolinians vote on Amendment one (although early voting has already begun), opponents of this over-reaching legislation can defeat it if they can educate the public.

Has anyone else noticed that Rick Santorum hasn't endorsed Mitt Romney?

The latest Gallup poll has some good news for President Obama.

What is the big secret about Social Security? It is NOT going broke (even though the media is painting a different picture).

 Senate Democrats may be shutting down the chance of the Keystone Pipeline from coming to fruition any time soon.

 Setting himself apart from many Christian leaders, Joel Osteen has his own particular stance on Mitt Romney's religion.

The California legislature is taking some strong steps against ex-gay "therapy."

And lastly, some notes on a single-payer health care system.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Religious Wrong: Beat Gay Kids Straight


The Wrap-Up: April 24, 2012

An Iowa newspaper devoted its front page to Kenneth Weishuhn Jr., a recent victim of anti-gay bullying who took his own life.

Rachel Maddow is being sued for defamation. Her crime: using someone's words in their proper (hate-filled) context. Yet again, someone demands free speech only to try to stifle someone else's. That conservative logic for you.

Some students, alums, and others from Liberty University (a Christian school) are angry that the school chose Mitt Romney (a Mormon) to speak at the school's commencement.

With two weeks until the vote on North Carolina's homophobic, disastrous, and over-reaching Amendment One, its opponents are in need of donations to capitalize on momentum.

A religious right group may be planning cyber assaults on the LGBT community. Obviously, that is what Christ would do.

Former GOP presidential candidate Jon Huntsman compared the Republican Party to the Communist Party in China, which I think is true, hilarious, and possibly career ending for him.

An Iowa congressional candidate thinks that being for the Buffett Rule makes President Obama un-American. I don't think this guy really knows how many people/who else is also for this rule.

A group of "street preachers" that showed up at a pride parade to protest were effectively shut down...by a flash-mob.

And lastly, sex robots.


Monday, April 23, 2012

Corporatocracy: ALEC & Political Corruption


Operation: Desperation


Marriage News Watch: April 23, 2012


Trailer: Koch Brothers Exposed


You can get the entire film HERE.

The Wrap-Up: April 23, 2012

Bill O'Reilly thinks (and yes, I'm using the word thinks VERY loosely) Glee turns kids gay.

Senator Chuck Grassley is supporting a boycott of Coca-Cola (which apparently has bottling plants in his home state, which is a major fail on his part). Maybe he should ask NOM about their boycott of Starbucks which has been a rousing "success."

Was Jesus gay? I doubt it, but I'll let you judge for yourself.

Changes in the voting laws of states around the nation may have a negative effect on President Obama's reelection bid (which is, no doubt, the goal of those who passed those bills).

Tennessee doesn't have the market cornered on "Don't Say Gay" bills as Missouri advances one of their own. Not talking about homosexuality won't make it go away.

Christian conservative leaders are offering a less than glowing endorsement of Mitt Romney.

It's unfortunate beyond words that there is a group in the Senate known as the "pro-bully" caucus. I guess they aren't aware that some of their constituents may have LGBT kids (or they just don't give a damn).

Baseball player Brandon McCarthy sounds off on same-sex kiss cam "jokes."

And lastly, Fox fails yet again. This time, on Obama's vacation time.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Lowlights & Highlights: April 21, 2012

When will this end? Yet another teenager (Kenneth Weishuhn Jr.) committed suicide after anti-gay bullying. Every time these stories come to my attention, it's like the world stops for a split-second and all I can think is "No, please, not again." This actually happened this past weekend, but I've felt it to varying degrees over the course of this week like a shadow following me. And to think that there are people out there who believe this kind of thing isn't a problem. There are others who think that these kids deserve what they are getting.

This won't end until until schools are empowered to deal with bullying of ALL kinds, and parents are engaged with their kids in terms of making sure they aren't being bullied (or for that matter, aren't the ones perpetrating the bullying). Most importantly, it won't end until the culture of this country has drastically changed. There are still massive forces fighting to allow the discrimination that makes LGBT kids aware that people (lots of people) think that they are less than human, undeserving of quality protections under the law and, more to the point, societal acceptance as they are. The assaults made these forces have a high cost and, unfortunately, that cost just got higher.

My heart goes out to the friends and family of Kenneth Weishuhn Jr. Another life snuffed out before its time.

***

I have mentioned this a time or two on the blog, including video of Rachel Maddow talking about this. She describes it at length but I'll just give you the bullet-points here. In 2001, Dr. Robert Spitzer (is is not a Right-wing nutjob, theocrat, or ardent homophobe) published "research" that essentially said one can be cured of homosexuality. Of course, the social conservatives and the ex-gay movement latched onto this and ever since, they have cited this as evidence that homosexuality is a choice, that one can "pray the gay away" and so forth. It was probably the happiest day in many of their lives. This week was probably equally devastating to them. Spitzer has retracted that "research" and condemned the way in which it has been used. Why? The methodology was all wrong. The "research" was primarily anecdotal and his primary source of these anecdotes were from people referred to him by ex-gay organizations. There is obviously an inherent bias in whatever findings come from that. Not only this, but the sample size (aside from not being random) was very small, thus doubly unreliable. The scientific method was not followed in this "research" and as such, the findings mean nothing of substance. Spitzer went so far as to say that he wished the study had never been published. He isn't the only one, I'm sure.

The walls are crumbling in around the ex-gay movement. There is pretty much no empirical evidence to back them up, yet plenty of empirical evidence working against them. This is a dangerous movement that does far more psychological harm than help. This is a huge blow to them and other social conservatives since this is a man that is respected in the scientific community and the work had been published in a peer-reviewed publication (and not some fringe magazine). It's great that Dr. Spitzer had the to admit he had been wrong (would that more people had that courage. This will certainly help the already turning tide on LGBT equality turn a little bit faster.

The Wrap-Up: April 20, 2012

The Vatican thinks nuns spend too much time helping the poor and not enough time hating gay people. Then again, the Vatican also enables pedophilia, so maybe they aren't the best example of good priorities.

17 years after the Oklahoma City bombing, conditions are remarkably similar in terms of the potential threat of domestic terrorism.

Last Summer's earthquake in Virginia has some lessons and warnings to tell.

I gotta say that I'm a bit surprised about the poll results for the Republican VP pick.

The president of "kill the gays" Uganda claims gay people aren't being persecuted.

Did you know that global warming is caused by illegal immigrants?

It looks like the former Michigan assistant AG will be going to trial for stalking a gay Student Government President. It couldn't have happened to a more deserving guy.

It's really amazing how often Michele Bachmann ends up with her foot in her mouth. This time, it made her look a little racist.

And lastly, the "ex-gay" movement may be in its death-throes.




Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Religious Wrong: Defending Jailing the Gays



I couldn't help but think this video sounded like an SNL satirical sketch...because these people sound like a giant joke. Unfortunately, they're deadly serious, and it's people like them that create the hateful environments that cause LGBT people (especially impressionable kids) to endure such torment: internal and external. Their message of hate and discrimination deserves to be marginalized.

Bibles in Public Schools


Gingrich's War Against Fox


The Wrap-Up: April 19, 2012

While I may not have precognitive powers, I definitely saw this one coming from miles away. There is a coalition of organizations suing against the National Defense Authorization Act because of the HUGE potential to destroy civil liberties that comes with it.

In yet another massive fit of hypocrisy, Eric Cantor and House Republicans (who are always talking about simplifying the tax code) are pushing legislation that creates more paperwork for small businesses.

There are now six Seattle churches against joining the archbishop's petition drive in an effort to overturn the recently passed marriage equality bill. This shows a growing disconnect between the Catholic hierarchy and rank-and-fill parishioners.

After having to be as far to the right as possible to get the GOP nomination, it's time for Mitt Romney to do the 2-Step back to the center.

One of the main groups being targeted by both Republicans and Democrats is the Latino population.

It is no surprise whatsoever that Republicans will use faith in their political arguments until clergy members speak against said Republicans. This is called ideological inconsistency...or just using religion as a pawn for political gain.

Personally, I don't care how many years of tax returns a candidate releases. However, the least Mitt Romney could do is give an excuse for a low number of years without including a lie.

NOM's Dump Starbucks campaign is not just a domestic flop, but an international one as well. Some people just don't realize when they are fighting the long defeat.

And lastly, a straight male student is running for Prom Queen. I feel like he will be out of his depth...at least with finding the right dress.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Tea Party Homophobes


The Wrap-Up: April 18, 2012

 Mitt Romney has narrowed the gap between himself and President Obama.

Though I mentioned this yesterday, here is an actual list of ways marriage inequality hurts same-sex couples and their children at tax time.

Blue Dog Democrats (conservative Democrats) are on the brink of extinction.

In various states, an alliance has formed between Labor and LGBT equality groups.

Mitt Romney's definition of "freedom" is...skewed (at best).

The Florida "Family" Association has their panties in a bunch over LGBT characters in video games. If it weren't this giving them conniptions, it would be something else.

Tony Perkins, President of the so-called Family Research Council, seems to think that the repeal of the anti-gay DADT policy is to blame for male Secret Service members and their sex scandal with female prostitutes. Sounds more like a claim Pat Robertson would make.

Speaking of the Secret Service, they are investigating an alleged threat made on President Obama...by musician Ted Nugent.

Arch-homophobe and radio host Matt Barber thinks he knows more than the entire Australian Psychological Association. I think he needs to learn something about humility from Jesus.

And lastly, the assault on the separation of church and state.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tweet of the Day: April 17, 2012

Global Chocolate Crisis



This is why EVERYONE should be concerned about global climate change.

The Wrap-Up: April 17, 2012

Both Warren Buffett and President Obama pay a lower tax rate than their secretaries.

Two federal judges took a huge swipe at America's federal regulatory system (and by extension, the minimum wage).

Saudi Arabia has decided to ban gay kids, tomboys, and other "non-conformists" from its schools. Maybe this is where Louisiana republicans got the idea for its Charter schools.

A street-preacher thinks that calling Rosie O'Donnell a "lesbian pig" is the Christian thing to do. Maybe he should give that Bible another read and pay attention this time because he missed the part where it says love thy neighbour.

Given this being the week of Tax Day, it's a good time to bring up how marriage inequality hurts same-sex couples, especially those with children, this time of the year thanks to DoMA.

Rep Joe Walsh (R-IL) challenged his opponent Tammy Duckworth to a debate. The thing is, she was on duty (Army National Guard) at the time of the debate. Maybe Walsh should have used that time to pay the $117,000 he STILL owes in child support.

America is losing interest in the Tea Party. I guess all of those fascism signs have lost their luster.

Or maybe, it's stories like this one.

And lastly, a press release from then-Governor Romney titled "There's No Place Like Youth Pride."

Monday, April 16, 2012

Homophobes Are SOOOOOOOO Gay!!!


Marriage News Watch: April 16, 2012


The Wrap-Up: April 16, 2012

After their rousing success against J.C. Penney and Toy R Us, One-Million Forty-Six Thousand Moms is now setting their sights on Urban Outfitters. In future news, Urban Outfitters stock will skyrocket.

Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) has gone from being against hate crimes legislation to being against people with student loans. I'm pretty sure that means she is against a huge chunk of her constituents. They should remember that this November.


Arizona has paraded out yet another inane law.

A New York Times columnist discusses with Rachel Maddow the accelerated pace of marriage equality acceptance.

NOM president Brian has been hacked on Twitter...again.

Politifact has something to say about Mitt Romney's claim that 92.3% of the job losses during the recession hit women.

Do homophobic people (potentially) in the closet deserve sympathy?

And lastly, most Americans support the "Buffett Rule."

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Lowlights & Highlights: April 14, 2012

Awesome, we all survived Friday the 13th.

You have probably never heard of Glenn Grothman. Before this week, neither had I. He a Republican state Senator in the Wisconsin legislature. To this elected official, it makes perfect sense that there be a pay gap between men and women because money means more to men. Seriously, he is on record as having said this. And people on the political right have been making the claim this week that the "War on Women" is a farce invented by the left. The Daily Beast reported this:

Whatever gaps exist, he insists, stem from women’s decision to prioritize child-rearing over their careers. “Take a hypothetical husband and wife who are both lawyers,” he says. “But the husband is working 50 or 60 hours a week, going all out, making 200 grand a year. The woman takes time off, raises kids, is not go go go. Now they’re 50 years old. The husband is making 200 grand a year, the woman is making 40 grand a year. It wasn’t discrimination. There was a different sense of urgency in each person.” [...]
Grothman doesn’t accept these studies. When I ran the numbers by him, he replied, “The American Association of University Women is a pretty liberal group.” Nor, he argued, does its conclusion take into account other factors, like “goals in life. You could argue that money is more important for men. I think a guy in their first job, maybe because they expect to be a breadwinner someday, may be a little more money-conscious. To attribute everything to a so-called bias in the workplace is just not true.”
I think that Grothman should be made aware of what decade/century this is, because it sounds like he is mentally stuck in the 1950's. This isn't Pleasantville (although that's a great film). This is America. Income is equally important to men and women. Because of skyrocketing healthcare costs, education costs, and other necessary things, both partners need to make money. These is ZERO reason that there should not be equal pay for equal work.

I have no idea why anyone would vote for someone with such antiquated views. Seriously, who voted for this clown?

***

I actually had a little trouble deciding what my favourite thing of the week was, but it was definitely Rick Santorum's exit from the presidential race. I commented on this on the day, but let me elaborate a little. Santorum is a vile human being. He believes that not everyone is equal under the law. Granted there were other GOP candidates who are on record as agreeing with him on this, but Santorum does so in a way that is particularly vile. I think that part of why I point him out is that he got farther in the nomination process than did other homophobes like Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann, so we heard plenty more of his homophobia. There is also the fact that while he was on the campaign trail, he would talk about these social issues unprompted and unsolicited. Then, when an interviewer asked him about these issues on-air, he often tried to dodge the question or claim that he didn't talk about those issues that much. I really don't have anything good to say about Rick Santorum. 

Honestly, I wish he had stayed in the race long enough to get trounced in his home state primary later this month. Maybe then his political career would have been over forever. However, not hearing this man who is against women, against LGBT Americans, against public education, against higher education, and so on is definitely welcome. Regular readers of this blog are well aquainted with the stupid, insensitive, and factually incorrect statements Santorum has made. I have featured many of them (and there are many of them to feature). He would be a bigger embarrassment to the office of the President of the United States than George W. Bush (who would look like Abraham Lincoln by comparison). He would do nothing good for this country. Luckily he won't get the chance...at least for another four years. Good riddance.

Let the REAL election begin!!!

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Progressive Majority


The Wrap-Up: April 13, 2012

The federal Matthew Shepard & James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act is getting its first test.

Marcus Bachmann didn't learn his lesson the first time around.

There is a growing amount of evidence that Paul Ryan's budget pays for tax cuts for the rich on the backs of the poor. As I have said many times before, if compassionate conservatism ever existed, it is dead.

The government of Nigeria is being sued over an anti-gay bill currently in the legislature.

Arizona has its first LGBT high school. It's a shame that such a thing is necessary, but at least it's there for whoever needs it.

We know that there are a lot of pro-gay people of faith (as I have mentioned a number of times on this blog), so why don't we hear more from them in the media instead of just hearing from their very anti-gay counterparts?

As impossible as it may seem, there are at least some Catholic priests who opt not to go the homophobic route. It's just too bad that they are so rare.

Russian citizens are standing against the newly passed bill in St. Petersburg.

And lastly, your job may be killing you.



Thursday, April 12, 2012

Pat Robertson: Demon Hunter


The Wrap-Up: April 12, 2012

Now despite Mitt Romney being the last (legitimate) Republican standing, he still faces the challenge of solidifying the Republican base.

In news that won't help Romney win independents, it seems that he is also against equal pay laws. Who says there is no war on women?

There are a lot of moving parts in the race to replace Rep. Ron Paul (who is not running for reelection for his House seat).

Dr. Robert Spitzer has retracted his claim (which had been cited by ex-gay supporters) that "reparative therapy" can work.

MSNBC's Chris Matthews may be changing his mind about allowing hate-group leader Tony Perkins on his show.

About that "sanctity of marriage" schtick social conservatives keep talking about...


A Texas high school took a very interesting route in dealing with a bullying problem.

And lastly, the X-Men will be having a gay wedding.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Wrap-Up: April 11, 2012

I got home from the day job yesterday to find out that Rick Santorum is (officially) out of the race. Now I don't have to hear him implicitly say I'm sub-human, so that's great news.

You may be wondering, as I was, what happens to the delegates that Santorum racked up during his nomination bid?

With Mitt Romney now as his main opponent, President Obama is making tax fairness a centre-piece of his campaign.

Did you know that gender-based pay gaps are okay because money is more important to men than to women?

In news that may make it even harder for Republicans to win the Hispanic vote, many Hispanic people (apparently most) support LGBT equality.

Speaking of racial minorities and LGBT equality, there may also be a change happening within the African-American community.

A GOP House candidate adds his name to a list of conservatives against North Carolina's anti-LGBT amendment.

Hillary Clinton responds to the "Texts From Hillary" tumblr account, and does so in pretty awesome fashion.

And lastly, if you haven't read this letter (which is in part a gay teenager's response to his mother's homophobia), it is a MUST read.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Rick Santorum: The End of the Road (For Now)

For those who have not heard, Rick Santorum has ended his bid for the 2012 Republican nomination. While many of us knew this would happen months ago, it took him this long tto figure that out (granted, he lasted a lot longer than many, myself included, thought he would). Part of the reason for this probably has to do with his bad numbers in his home state of Pennsylvania. Even there, he has been in a statistical tie with front-runner Mitt Romney. A loss in that primary later this month (or for that matter, even a slim win) may have been the death knell for his political career as a whole. From some of the sound that I have heard over the last few weeks, it seems as though he may have had this on his mind for a while, to the point that it sounds like he may be contemplating a 2016 run should the Republican candidate not win this coming November. This seems to be the pattern with the GOP. The runner-up from the last go-round ends up winning the next nomination process. George H.W. Bush lost it in 1980 but won it in '88. John McCain lost it in 2000 then won it in '08. Mitt Romney lost it in '08 (I think technically he was in 3rd and Mike Huckabee was in second, but he didn't run this year) and seems poised to win it now. So don't think that we have heard the last from Rick Santorum. The ways of the world are not that kind.

The Wrap-Up: April 10, 2012

A group of Colorado football players (allegedly) beat a group of freshmen over the weekend. This is why organizations like Athlete Ally are so important.

After having already come out against North Carolina's proposed constitutional ban on marriage equality, President Obama echoes that sentiment in Minnesota, which is attempting to pass a similar law.

Did you know that Neo-Nazis are a "civil rights group?" I'm glad a Fox affiliate cleared that up for us.

Shocking absolutely no one with functioning brain cells, a report has stated that the DADT repeal has had no adverse effects.

Study after study has found that the more homophobic people are, the more likely it is that they are conflicted about their own same-sex attractions. Maybe we should start calling this "Larry Craig Syndrome."

Finally, some uncharacteristically good news on homophobia from the African continent.

Middle-class Americans have been struggling for years (many going bankrupt) while over that same period of time, lots of billion-dollar companies have paid $0 in taxes. That sounds fair...doesn't?

Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) has gone from playing the House Majority leader to playing the Benedict Arnold of the GOP.

Washington state homophobes are off to a slow start. Let's hope this trend continues.

And lastly, Moveon.org gives us a great billboard.


Saturday, April 7, 2012

War on Women: Beyond Planned Parenthood


Lowlights & Highlights: April 7, 2012

It was reported this week that Republicans in a state Senate committee had passed a law that allowed LGBT students to be banned from charter schools in the state. That's right, these Republicans are so adamantly homophobic that they are trying to enact this law, which has the support of Governor Bobby Jindal and the Louisiana Family Council. It is truly amazing how these people are always talking about doing what is best for the children, and then they turn around and do things that are very anti-children. It is also hypocritical that Republicans are always talking about expanding school choice, and then proceed to pass a law like this one. Jindal press secretary (Jindal couldn't be bothered to comment) said that they are against "special protections or rights." Of course, this sentiment is completely inconsistent with the fact that there are anti-discrimination laws in effect against race, religion, and gender based discrimination (as well as a few other categories). It really comes down to the obvious: They're either patently homophobic, or they're pandering to the patently homophobic voters in their party (or maybe both). Their hatred and ignorance is not just cause for the suffering of children.

***

I'm sure you're aware (you certainly are if you're a regular reader) that after Starbucks announced that they supported Washington state's push for marriage equality, and marriage equality in general, the National Organization for Marriage (Discrimination) started a boycott. Well, that boycott has pretty much gone down in flames. Their "Dump Starbucks" campaign, complete with a Twitter handle, managed about 28,000 signatures. Meanwhile, a "Thank You Starbucks" campaign by SumOfUs.org managed over 640,000 signatures (one of which was mine). That's a 22-fold difference, but who's counting. Also, in the time since the boycott started, the company's stock has risen. I find it hilarious how these right-wing boycotts have a tendency to backfire. It goes to show how they have exposed themselves as the hateful and ignorant lot they are. Society is leaving them behind, and that has them pissed.

I will most likely be making a stop at Starbucks on my way to work tomorrow morning.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Allen West Dodging Marriage Equality



It's very telling that Representative Allen West (R-FL) is dodging this question. Here is a Republican Congressman, back by the Tea Party no less (which shows how "right" he is) and yet when given the opportunity to denounce marriage equality as Republicans/conservatives all too often do, he tries to change the subject. What do we take away from this interview? Republicans are increasingly gun-shy about denouncing LGBT equality, even those Republicans backed by the Tea Party. Gone are the days when Republicans would proudly say how anti-gay they were only to ride that wave into political office. Now, doing this will incur the ire of not just the political left, but also an increasing numbers of independent and Republican voters. This is another sign of the changing dynamic surrounding the issues of LGBT equality, and it's a damn good sign at that.

And since Rep. West didn't ever answer the question he was asked, I'll just let you know that he is on-record as being AGAINST marriage equality.

Marriage News Watch: Immigration Equality


The Wrap-Up: April 6, 2012


Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) thinks that making sure everyone is treated equally under the law is merely a "pet project." I could have sworn that it was his job, but maybe that's just my imagination.

After Republicans complained about Obama's stimulus not having a good return-on-investment, one of their darlings (Gov. Chris Christie R-NJ) is getting quite a poor ROI after massive corporate tax breaks he gave away.

A secret meeting was held with conservative leaders and Rick Santorum concerning his way ahead in this race. It's funny how they actually think he has a way ahead.

With some slight changes, "Bully" has finally been reduced to a PG-13 rating.

Canada is doomed, and it's all because of the gays. Surprisingly, Pat Robertson isn't the person who said this.

Newt Gingrich hasn't had much luck when it comes to starting political organizations. Then again, the same could be said about him running for President. Maybe he isn't as smart as he thinks he is.

An Ohio judge (kind of) has ruled on whether or not a student can wear a pro-gay t-shirt.

An NHL player makes the obvious connection that tends to escape many other people between homophobia and racism.

Over 600,000 people have thanked Starbucks for their support of marriage equality. I'm happy to have been one of those people.

And lastly, a drag show at a Catholic University. Wait until you hear the university's response.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Conservative Excuses

From Political Loudmouth

The Wrap-Up: April 5, 2012

Rep. Steve King (R-IA)
The LAPD thinks a man can't be raped...as if their reputation wasn't bad enough already.

An Iowa Congressman thinks a "DADT" policy should be in place for American businesses.

According Politifact, Mitt Romney has some problems with the truth.

The students of a Minnesota Catholic school were none too pleased with a speaker who made some... "Santorum-esque" statements.

Louisiana is on the verge of taking homophobia to a whole new low by targeting LGBT kids.

Homophobes say the darnedest (read: most ignorant/false) things.

Okay, so my home state may not be the best in the country, but...never mind, I have no comeback. :(


And lastly, an Ohio amendment enacting marriage equality just became one step closer to a reality.