This week Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and North Carolina became the latest states to run headlong into the brick wall otherwise known as the US Constitution. Increasingly, state legislators who don’t care for the way things are headed, in the country, have taken to writing their own laws, amending their state constitutions and proposing ballot initiatives to protect their political, social policy and ideological comfort zones.
Evidently, judging by the number of such actions, out in the states, quite a few states are uncomfortable with the powers-that-be, inspiring state executives and legislators to frequently bandy about concepts like state’s rights, nullification, secession, impeachment and the most recent addition to the Extreme Playbook, the Second Amendment Solution.
Fortunately, the framers of our constitution foresaw that leading a vibrant, young nation might sometimes devolve into an exercise in herding cats and they prudently built that framework of very stern stuff. Our constitution has survived some very trying times and ultimately, those tests have strengthened it and repeatedly strengthened our resolve to uphold the core principles that make us the global model of Democracy.
As with most foundational documents, though, ours are open to interpretation and argument and, in some cases, amendment but, ultimately such instruments must pass a rigorous testing of their essential constitutionality before becoming part of the fabric of American law. Thus the framers attempted to protect citizens against the self interests, regional imperatives and transient political agendas of their elected representatives.
Oh, dear! sometimes I just want to throw my hands in the air and quoteThe Beatles:
All the lonely people
where do they all belong?
From a mother’s perspective, the one pictured above belongs in therapy.
Young Trestin Meacham has tried many, many ways, in his relatively short life, to get attention. The internet is dotted with the potholes of his abandoned bloggery; in 2012 he ran for the Utah State Senate on the Constitution Party ticket and $100.00 in campaign donations; and, when that failed, he created the Constitutional Heroarchy of Kherutistan, online, complete with flag, history, it’s own currency—Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, to be exact.
But only this week, did Trestin Meacham achieve his dream of “going viral” by declaring a hunger strike until Utah gays stop getting married.
Sad news coming to us, today, from the Homo-phobo-sphere, where an outbreak of spontaneously-combusting hair and exploding heads is taking quite a toll. 2013 has been something of an annus horribilis for anti-gay activists who have had their dreams of perpetual hetero-supremacy dashed by Obama’s legions of radical-leftist-activist judges [some of whom were appointed by Dubya and must have “turned”] proclaiming that “equal means equal.”
Up to now, the homophobe reaction has been oddly muted and limited to isolated breath-holding, foot-stomping and refusals to bake cakes or arrange flowers for gay weddings. But now, the march of deviants has gone “a bridge too far” in their attempt to subvert that iconic celebration of American heterodoxy—The Rose Bowl Parade.
The theme of this year’s Rose Bowl Parade is Dreams Come True and, in keeping with that theme, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation has built a wedding cake shaped float atop which a gay couple will solemnize their wedding vows during the parade.
And, suddenly, A BOYCOTT!! is in order and San Diego community organizer, Karen Grube, tells us why:
Now gay activists want to destroy the Rose Parade by performing a Gay Wedding on one of the floats. I guess that’s what they mean by ‘Dreams Come True’ or is it nightmares?
I grew up in a blue-collar steel-town in the Rust Belt, schooled by nuns, during the papacy of “The Good Pope” of Vatican II—John XXIII, and the presidency of John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the first Catholic President of the United States. It doesn’t get more Catholic than that.
Those were the days, my friend . . . change was in the air. And little Catholic school girls, like myself, were growing into natural liberals. We were the children of American Dreamers and veterans who had fought to make the world safe for Democracy. Nothing would hold us back from making the world a better place for all God’s children to live.
So, imagine my surprise when, as a young adult, it became increasingly clear to me that the Church that had been partially responsible for shaping my political beliefs was becoming more and more conservative—and Republican, as I watched.
As time went by and Americans actually talked about issues like abortion, contraception and same sex-marriage, the clergy, anxious to protect their own social policy agenda from the attack of modernity, found natural allies in the GOP’s growing base on the Religious Right.
It was a marriage made in heaven. Mature, hard-working, mostly white people with conservative social and economic values were welcome under the GOP Big Top.
Thank God it’s Thursday and American Culture has finally spit up a hairball that will effectively distract us all from real problems like expiring unemployment benefits, minimum wage and Republicans newest threat to blow up the global economy if they can’t have their Canadian pipeline.
Evidently the crusty old patriarch of the Duck Dynasty had a few colorful thoughts to share with a GQ interviewer recently (WTFGQ?) on the illogic of being gay and the “good times there are not forgotten” cheerfulness of Louisiana’s black tenant farmers in pre-civil-rights days:
“I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person,” Robertson is quoted in GQ. “Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!... Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”
I’m thinking Duck Daddy went to the wrong nightclubs and somehow missed “strange fruit” season on the Bayou.
Anyway, what he had to say about gays was pretty inflammatory, too, with the usual references to sin, hellfire and bestiality.
Well, it was bound to happen . . . Republicans have found a new way to distract America from Obamacare getting fixed by spreading the Too Stupid for Prime Time whopper that President Obama is closing the US embassy to the Vatican as retribution for Catholic resistance to certain employer mandates in the ACA.
Conservative media has lit up like a Hannukah bush. Drudge shrieks “Obama’s call to close Vatican embassy is ‘slap in the face’ to Roman Catholics”; WND opines “OBAMA ‘INSULTS’ CATHOLICS IN VATICAN-EMBASSY SHUTDOWN”; and the ever thoughtful dead-heads at Breitbart, seeing right to the heart of the matter report:
. . . the Obama administration is trying to diminish and discredit the Vatican’s role in the world because it’s pro-life, pro-family, and pro-religious freedom values is at odds with the Regime’s pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage stance.
[Note to Roasters: By the time this is published many of the links in this post may have 404d. The subject of the post is doing some pretty extensive damage control on his own links so I’ve tried to provide alternatives with clips from original.]
Every once in a while, on a Sunday, I’m moved to check up on what the God-botherers are up to, just for the hell it. It just so happens that this week the hot story along those lines has to do with one Justin Lookadoo (I know?) whose current “ministry” is as a motivational speaker for high-schoolers [and any other age group that can cough up his speaker’s fee].
From what I can tell, the cool thing about being a Christian motivational speaker is that you don’t need any qualifications outside of being a Christian to make a full-time job of it. Lookadoo couldn’t peddle his public speaking skills to bankers, for example, because he doesn’t know squat about high yield funds or T-Bonds.
But no-one has any problem signing him up to entertain 4th period hump-day assemblies because he, like his audience, was a teenager, attended high school and he’s Christian and that’ll do the kids some good, right?
Granted, in public schools, guys like Lookadoo have to “hide their light under a bushel” because . . . separation of church and state. But, Texas, which is different, in many ways, is sort of relaxed about such quibbles.
And, so it is that Justin Lookadoo found himself before an auditorium full of teenagers at a high school in Richardson, TX, this week, just like thousands of other school speaking engagements he’s done over the years.
Except that this one broke bad and went viral. The kids in the audience started critiquing Lookadoo on Twitter and to say that they “pwned” him is something of an understatement.
Apparently, Ted Cruz is feeling a little insecure these days what with his highly publicized catalog of freshman fiascoes and the fact that dear old Dad, Senor Crazypants, is upstaging him at every turn, lately.
The most recent sign that Cruz is making a course adjustment was news, last week, coming out of a closed-door Republican luncheon, that Cruz has promised to “not actively campaign against” his Senate colleagues or “help raise money for their primary opponents.”
What a guy!
So. What does a megalomaniac do when he’s not getting enough attention? well, this one goes out to his own backyard and barks at the president in a typically Cruz-ian display of tastelessness and deplorably bad timing.
President Obama should take his broken promises tour elsewhere so Texans can continue focusing on the solutions that have allowed our state to become and remain the nation’s economic and job creation powerhouse.
We’ve all recognized for some time now that Cruz et fils is a slightly creepy sideshow especially when both the senator and Papi share the same stage and the same awkward adoring glances.
It started out innocently enough, proud father sharing some triumphal moments around election time. And the occasional human interest backgrounder interview in which Cruz, Sr. shared a few memorable anecdotes from “daddy’s little prodigy’s” past.
Like how Cruz, Sr. introduced his precocious middle-schooler to Austrian School libertarian economics and ultraconservative interpretations of US history at the Free Enterprise Education Center (FEEC). And how Teddy and a few of his little friends from FEEC created a group known as the Constitutional Corroborators who toured local Rotary luncheons to dazzle diners with their compendious knowledge of free enterprise and the US Constitution.
We’re almost a year into Cruz Jr’s reign of terror in the US Senate, though, and Cruz, Sr seems to just be hitting his stride, warming up for the Big Push. If things go according to plan, Cruz & Cruz could get a whole lot creepier.
You know what? On second thought, maybe it’s because he has said the most gee-gosh-darn things. You know, like joking that the president was going to disappear him and that hecklers were probably paid OFA shills. Because obviously. Nothing succeeds like flaming paranoia. (Unless you are appealing to the fringe, in which case paranoia is best known as “fitting in”.) And amongst the values voters, that enlightened bastion of Godwinning for Goobers, Homophobia for Herp-Derps, and Bible-Banging for Bigots, he actually has a crowd in which he doesn’t stand out. Good going, Ted.
If you’re going to San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair . . . and don’t shake hands with anyone, especially in the Castro. Today, on the 700 Club, Christian Capitalista Pat Robertson exposed a little known local habit of the denizens of the World’s Gayest City—infecting people with AIDS via poison rings.
As Robertson explained to a caller:
You know what they do in San Francisco? Some in the gay community there, they want to get people so if they got the stuff they’ll have a ring, you shake hands, and the ring’s got a little thing where you cut your finger. Really. It’s that kind of vicious stuff, which would be the equivalent of murder.
See, as Robertson knows, his unwary flock are probably expecting gays to put aside aside their homicidal rage and enjoy triumphs like SCOTUS striking down DOMA and Prop 8, and same-sex wedding bells ringing from sea to shining sea. But nooooo, rapacious homos are still murdering straighties with gay abandon.
Some of the Christians at Christian Broadcast Network [shake that little money-maker, Uncle Pat] saw fit to edit Robertson’s homophobic paranoia out of the online version of the program but not before it aired on cable television. Right Wing Watch was there to catch and send it—in all of its unChristian hatefulness—down the intertubes to glory.
The whole episode is causing me to wonder when, exactly, Uncle Pat ran out of God-stuff to talk about on his TV ministry? or is this 21st century God-stuff? and also, do actual people really watch this moronic grifter and think of it as a religious experience? and, finally, do people still give Robertson money???
On a more anthropological note, I’d simply like to reassure Robertson and his followers that, as a gay woman, it has been simply ages since I’ve seen a poison ring in the Castro [that’s so ‘70s]. But you still might want to give gayz with iPhones a wide berth because GAY LASER DEATH RAY!!1! . . . [there’s an app for that].
Robertson issued a non-apology to The Atlantic, saying that he “regret[s] that my remarks had been misunderstood, but this often happens because people do not listen to the context of remarks which are being said.”
Of course, unlike CBN, we provided the entire exchange:
I was asked by a viewer whether she had a right to leave her church because she had been asked to transport an elderly man who had AIDS and about whose condition she had not been informed. My advice was that the risk of contagion in those circumstances was quite low and that she should continue to attend the church and not worry about the incident.
In my own experience, our organization sponsored a meeting years ago in San Francisco where trained security officers warned me about shaking hands because, in those days, certain AIDS-infected activists were deliberately trying to infect people like me by virtue of rings which would cut fingers and transfer blood.
I regret that my remarks had been misunderstood, but this often happens because people do not listen to the context of remarks which are being said. In no wise [sic] were my remarks meant as an indictment of the homosexual community or, for that fact, to those infected with this dreadful disease.
This has to be one of the funniest, most telling, FoxNews clips I’ve seen since Karl Rove’s election night freakout last year.
Reza Aslan is a scholar with a number of popular books on religion to his credit. His latest is a book about Jesus’ life and times titled Zealot. Zealot has created quite a hubbub amongst the books-about-Jesus-audience, who are upset, to say the least, about some of Aslan’s premises and conclusions. Amazon Reviews is burning up with some old-time religion hate. That’s predictable.
Down through the ages lots and lots of religion scholars and enthusiasts have weighed in on the sparse facts of Jesus’ life and come to varying conclusions. Those writers have come in every shape, color and religious background. It’s an interesting topic to some. Admittedly, I haven’t read the book, I’ve only listened to interviews, but none of what I’ve heard of Aslan’s ideas sound like revolutionary departures from what’s always been kicking around on the subject.
I’m also old enough to remember the fuss that surrounded the debut of Jesus Christ, Superstar on Broadway. For a short while, it was an apocalyptic event (which certainly didn’t hurt ticket sales) and eventually the show, deemed blasphemous by some, was permitted to make millions of dollars in performances and license fees forever and ever, amen. Because, as we all know, from the Dominionists, Jesus is a free market fan.
The thing that is astonishing about this Fox incident is that it takes over nine minutes of airtime for this veteran FoxNews correspondent to wrap her mind around the idea that a Muslim has written a book about Jesus. She projects, without overtly saying it—“how dare you?” That’s really the whole [only] point of the long-ish segment.
A lot of folks have already taken a swat at the following religio-comic-absurdist story and moved on but, as I’m a gay woman of the 21st century, I feel a certain sense of entitlement to get my own licks in when the anti-gay crusaders of the Religious Right make particular fools of themselves.
Twinkle Cavanaugh (real name) is the duly elected President of the Alabama Public Services Commission that oversees statewide public utilities. Twinkle called a hearing to discuss state utility rate structures and asked John Delwin Jordan to testify at that hearing. It’s unclear to me what qualifies Jordan, a Baptist minister and President of the Prattville (real name) TEA Party, to address utility rate structures but, then, lots of things bewilder me these days.
Nevertheless, testify Jordan did—he testified for JESUS! Here’s that, captured on tape.
I have been in the Commonwealth of Virginia, and, I am not entirely averse to admitting, reasonably certain I have broken a few of their retrograde antisex laws while I was there. Actually, I think I was probably there with the explicit intention of probably getting around to doing some of the things their legislators in times of yore believed were, ahem, “icky”.
I have to admit to complete and total mystification regarding a candidate for governor who persists in being, you know. That guy. But I have a larger point to make, other than admitting to being at least kind of sort of the exact people Cooch is interested in legally persuing for, I guess, having some kind of fun in Virginia not explicitly associated with, like, a water park or maybe Colonial Williamsburg. Did you hear about this thing regarding the current governor, Bob McDonnell, who was kind of warned against as being a total retrograde antisex theocrat who sort of kind of turned out to be also a grifter? Well, some of that grifterism allegation is looking to backwash on Cuccinelli.
Huh. Taking gifts as a government official? That blows. Probably should be, like, illegal or something, right? I guess ethics is what you make of it. Or at least, if you’re Ken Cuccinelli, you legislate bedroom morality, but in the taxpayer-funded office? Anything goes!