Friday, December 31, 2004

A Country with No Name

I'm currently reading A Country with No Name by de Grazia. It's an historical fiction book with an interesting take on things.

The legal early history of this country and the constitution are framed by a sexy English tutor teaching a college bound son of an ambassador. The framing with these two is interesting as we see the sparks fly, and the author by setting the tutor up as English makes it clear that he's presenting the history of this country in a different manner.

I haven't finished the book- but one of the more interesting things is the NAME of the country I'm in. It's not so much a name as a description- United States of [] America.
I put the brackets between of and America as when we started the Revolution it was the United States of British America... Now it could be '... of NORTH America' but that still ends up as a descriptor, not a real name like Canada OR Columbia( which many of the revolutionaries thought of naming this country AFTER the war.)

Our name comes about because of the fight between Federalists( like Washington and Hamilton) and Anti Federalists( like Jefferson). The Federalists wanted a strong CENTRAL government (quasi democrats) and the Antis wanted strong STATE rights( like current day republicans).
So the Federalists ended up NOT naming a central government, because to name it would tip their hand and anti Federalists didn't want to name it because they wanted the STATES( such as Virginia) to remain powerful- States rights, States named in the country- united STATES.

I might mention some other fun facts from the book- later next week or as I read more. I do however want to mention two things about the post of the president and his OATH of office.
First, I always assumed that we would never have an atheist president because most of the country is Christian( how much I did not know til this past election), and you want a big base to begin with. I did not realize however that in his oath of OFFICE, the president SWEARS to god. You can't swear to god without believing in same.
Second, he swears to uphold the constitution. That's the president's job. To sign bills into laws and defend the constitution. That's it. No more, no less. Not declare war, NOT tell congress what they SHOULD make law, NOT set policy- just uphold the constitution to the best of his ability.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Top Ten Most Outrageous Statements of 2004

From Media Matters for America

Here are the Top Ten most outrageous statements we have heard this year from members of the media. From anti-Semitic comments and attacks on women, gays, and lesbians to reprehensible acceptance of the Abu Ghraib prisoner torture, these statements are acutely representative of the conservative hate speech we found in the news media:

* Rush Limbaugh on the Abu Ghraib photos: "I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You ever heard of need to blow some steam off?"
* Ann Coulter: "[Senator John] Kerry will improve the economy in the emergency services and body bag industry."
* Tony Blankley called philanthropist George Soros "a Jew who figured out a way to survive the Holocaust."
* Michael Savage: "When you hear 'human rights,' think gays. ... [T]hink only one thing: someone who wants to rape your son."
* Oliver North: "Every terrorist out there is hoping John Kerry is the next president of the United States."
* Pat Robertson on gays and lesbians: "[S]elf-absorbed hedonists ... that want to impose their particular sexuality on the rest of America."
* Pat Buchanan: "[H]omosexuality is an affliction, like alcoholism."
* Bill O'Reilly to Jewish caller: "[I]f you are really offended, you gotta go to Israel."
* Bill Cunningham (Clear Channel radio host who appeared as a guest on The Sean Hannity Show): The election is over because "Elizabeth Edwards has now sung."
* Jerry Falwell: "And we're going to invite PETA [to "wild game night"] as our special guest, P-E-T-A -- People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. We want you to come, we're going to give you a top seat there, so you can sit there and suffer. This is one of my special groups, another one's the ACLU, another is the NOW -- the National Order of Witches [sic]. We've got -- I've got a lot of special groups."

Friday, December 24, 2004

How long before the Religious Right takes up this "cause" in America?

A city in Mexico has made it illegal for you to be nude indoors.

I just want to know how people are then supposed to bathe or propogate the species. If you change a baby's diaper, would the baby then be a criminal?

Letting Pictures Speak

Image Hosted by
Don't they look really happy?

And to think, last Summer they tried to amend the Constitution to deny homosexuals the ability to marry. Now they look to have quite the booty chain started...

Sunday, December 19, 2004

To defeat our enemies... Let's BECOME them...?

This has me sick.

I just don't like the idea people have that in order for democrats to be republicans we have to move to the right.

NO! That's not the answer.

Kerry didn't lose by much. There still is no 'mandate' from the people and if the dems move to the right- then not only does the WHOLE country lose- but then Nader's right.

You don't want Nader to be right, well do you?

( for the record I am for more then two parties BUT I'm smart enough to realize that it would only happen here with like run off elections or parliamentary rules[ like Canada]and that isn't going to happen, because that means people who've WON with this system have to make it so that it's easier for someone ELSE to beat them and their friends. So til the system is fixed, we need to make sure that the democratic party isn't 'fixed' by going to the right)

It's good to be the king... I mean president....

On October 27, U.S. Customs sent a letter to Top Shelf Productions
notifying them that copies of the anthology Stripburger had been
seized, charging that the stories "Richie Bush" by Peter Kuper and
"Moj Stub" (translated, "My Pole") by Bojan Redzic constituted
"clearly piratical copies" of registered and recorded copyrights. The
Comic Book Legal Defense Fund has retained counsel to challenge these

"Richie Bush," appearing in Stripburger (Vol. 12) #37, is a four-page
parody of Richie Rich that also satirizes the Bush Administration by
superimposing the personalities of the President's cabinet on the
characters from the comic. "My Pole," appearing in Stripburger (Vol.
3) # 4-5, which was published in 1994, is an eight-page ecology
parable in Slovenian that makes visual homage to Snoopy, Charlie
Brown, and Woodstock in three panels. Customs seized five copies of
the issue with the Peanuts reference and fourteen copies of the issue
containing "Richie Bush." The stories were both published in
the middle of their respective issues and no graphics from either
story appeared on the covers.

Top Shelf is the American agent for Stripburger, an Eastern European
comics publisher that releases anthologies of comics from cartoonists
around the globe. The comics that were seized were sent along as an
extra in a shipment of The Miniburger Dirty Dozen, a boxed set of mini
comics that Top Shelf imported to offer in the Direct Market and at
conventions. Top Shelf did not order the seized issues of the

Upon investigating the shipment, Customs released the copies of
Miniburger, but held the issues of Stripburger, giving Top Shelf
thirty days to either forfeit the shipment, request administrative
relief, or initiate court action.

At the urging of Stripburger, Top Shelf and CBLDF President Chris
Staros brought the case to the attention of the Fund as a potential
news story. CBLDF Executive Director Charles Brownstein felt the
matter warranted serious legal attention, so it was sent to Burton
Joseph, the Fund's legal counsel, whose opinion was that Customs
was unlawfully holding First Amendment protected speech. The option
of pursuing court action on First Amendment grounds was then taken to
the CBLDF Board of Directors, which unanimously voted 8-0 to take up
the case; Chris Staros recused himself from the vote.

On November 24, the Fund retained counsel in Charleston, SC who
hand-delivered a letter to Customs stating that the comics are
protected under existing First Amendment case law and should be either
immediately released or that court action should be initiated.

"In this case, it looks like Customs is overreaching its
authority," Staros says. "The comics in question are clearly
within the acceptable bounds of parody, and there is absolutely no
likelihood that consumers would confuse these works with the subjects
that they are parodying."

Brownstein stated, "The stories that were seized are short segments
within larger anthologies that in no way represented the content as
anything other than what it is. The charge that these are piratical
copies of existing copyrights is not only wrong-headed, but the
seizure amounts to an unlawful prior restraint of protected speech. It
is our hope that Customs will recognize that they have acted in error
in seizing these stories and release them immediately. If not, we are
prepared to go to court to protect the First Amendment rights that are
endangered by this misguided action."

Drew: ya know if they had made fun of Clinton... there prolly wouldn't have been a problem with allowing this comic unto US soil.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Some Surprise

While I live in a "blue" state, I live in a "red" city in an exceptionally "red" county in an exceptionally "red" northern half of the "blue" state (in other words, all of the blue Californians are in the Southern California population centers--up here we've many more red farmers and foresters and such).

Two mayors ago, we had a very anti-gay mayor here in Chico. One we eventually got free of when he graduated up to State Assembly. We have a City Coucil who ignored the last wish of one of its members who passed on this year (her dying request was that her husband fill her seat for the remaiing two months of her term), and instead kept the seat open and made everything the city needed voting on held up in deadlock.

All of this is to lead up to say that when I read the news this week that our new mayor, Scott Gruendl, was not only openly gay, but openly HIV+ as well, I was quite shocked and double checked my wakefulness.

While some local politicians tried to block the appointment (citizens don't vote for mayor here, the city council does) for lame reasons that only thinly veiled their homophobia, he was voted in with a 4-3 vote. The forerunner, very "red" for the deputy mayor position also ended up losing by a 4-3 vote because one of the folks who would have voted for him changed her mind because of his vote against Gruendl.

It's nice to see that i at least one election this year, homosexuality didn't get to be a destroying issue for a candidate.

Oh, how blue am I?

I saw this site and took hope- that by NOT buying from republicans we could PUNISH these evil companies.

I mean I wasn't surprised that Staples was RED, though I was suprised that Barnes and Noble et al was sooo blue.

What however turned me off of this is Wendy's, oh sweet yummy Wendy's. Wendy's is reder then Staples. I eat at Wendy's more then once a week- to give it up...

I love Wendy's more then any other fast food place, but they are red....I must and yet I can not.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

A Friend in Iraq

I have a freind, Craig Tremblay, who recently re upped in the Army( past year or so). He had served in the first Iraqi war... but was going thru a messy divorce and was unemployeed so he re enlisted.

I'm not going to mention how dumb or life threatening I think this decision is- but I did want to share the link to his web photo album. I think he's taking some interesting pics, and it might be interesting to check it out as his tour of duty goes on.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Porn for the Articles: "Congressman David Dreier: Gay & Ashamed" Feb. 2005 Hustler Magazine

"After a quarter century gliding through the raindrops, it’s time for the influential Republican lawmaker to come clean about his homosexuality and the lethal hypocrisy he’s employed in pursuit of power. MICHAEL COLLINS and MARK CROMER hold up the mirror to Dreier’s face.

Nineteen-eighty, the year Ronald Reagan’s long road to the White House ended in triumph, marked the cordite-fumed return of the Radical Right—and dovetailed nicely in every reactionary’s mind with the murder of John Lennon. That same year the press began covering an ominous outbreak: Gay men were being stricken with rare cancers as the first wave of what would later be dubbed AIDS hit the nation.

While hardly a headline-grabber, the opening of the decade also saw the election of a fresh-faced, smooth-talking 28-year-old Republican legislator named David Timothy Dreier.

Like his beloved Gipper, Dreier called Southern California home, and he too exuded his party’s new suntanned image. Indeed, Dreier’s was the cherubic, gum-chewing face the GOP put on to tell the Great Society: “Hi, we’re here to kill you.”

As the cultural war the conservatives were so eager to wage came into full bloom during the ’80s, the moral flotsam of libertines, pinkos, women’s-libbers and other undesirables (read faggots) were to be tied to the philosophical stake and ritually burned by the Reaganites. Dreier didn’t seem to mind holding the matches.

Yet while the flames from the Republicans’ Holy War danced in the night sky, few seemed to notice that Dreier often appeared one-dimensional, polished but going through the motions. Something was missing. One photographer invited into the congressman’s home described the pad as “sterile, more Levitz showroom than a young bachelor’s place.”

Where were the wife and kids that were so central to the Judeo-Christian utopia that Reagan swore was shining on the hill?

Republican Wayne Grisham, an early Dreier rival, caught on and quietly encouraged local newspapers to explore the politician’s sexuality, according to editors who recall the campaign. Asked recently about Dreier’s homosexuality, Grisham said, “I never used it.”

During a 1996 interview with Low Magazine (the first publication to explore Dreier’s sexuality as it related to GOP public-policy positions), Whittier Daily News editor Val Marrs remembered Grisham’s efforts against Dreier in the early 1980s differently. Grisham had been agitating for Dreier to be confronted, Marrs said, so she asked Dreier point-blank if he was gay when the candidate sought the paper’s endorsement. Ready for her, the young congressman answered no, retorting with stories about his girlfriend.

Marrs sensed something amiss in Dreier’s reaction. “He was a little too glib,” she said. “There should have been a blink, indignation, some emotion. A laugh. Something.”

Speculation began to spread, the sort that even a steady stream of party-arranged, photo-op female arm candy couldn’t deflect. Dreier never grew a beard, but word was he often had a pretty one on his arm. In 1988, Nelson Gentry—an ultraconservative who ran as a Democrat—blasted away at Dreier by repeatedly noting the congressman wasn’t married and claiming he couldn’t “represent families.” The Betty Bluehair crowd in Dreier’s district didn’t seem to make the connection.

The Bush clan got its own taste of Dreier’s game during Bush Sr.’s administration, according to Kitty Kelley’s book The Family. The tome describes Barbara Bush lamenting about her daughter Doro’s inability to get any play from David after a solid year of dating. “[Dreier] never laid a hand on her,” the matriarch reportedly complained to a friend at Camp David.

By 1998, Dreier’s homosexuality was at least tacitly acknowledged and accepted by high-level Republicans. Former California Senator John Seymour and an entourage of GOP golfers were enjoying the links during a fund-raiser at the Red Hill Country Club in Upland, California, when he was asked if Dreier would have to get married “in a hurry” if the congressman hoped to run against Senator Barbara Boxer that year. As his golfing buddies fell about the green laughing, Seymour broke into a big grin—but no one asked why.

“Well, no, I don’t think David would have to get married,” the venerable politico mused with a wink. “He might down in Mississippi, but this is California. We’re a little more open-minded out here.”

Perhaps, but it is clear that Dreier—Chairman of the House Rules Committee since 1999 and head of Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger’s transition team in late 2003—doesn’t want to test John Seymour’s theory. Until last fall, he didn’t have to.

Aside from an isolated question by a curious Val Marrs two decades ago, Dreier has enjoyed a Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell pass from the newspapers in his district. Indeed, editors at the Pasadena Star-News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune and the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin have gleefully bent over for the lawmaker, pimping out their reporters to dutifully play along with Dreier’s charade.

Under the umbrella of Texan Dean Singleton’s Media News Group, the publications have always been staunchly conservative outlets, with past executive editors like George Collier hanging framed photos of Dreier on their office walls. The irony could get thick, of course, especially considering that editors like Stephen Trosley have penned columns essentially arguing that gays who had more than one partner were deserving of AIDS.

Assured that local reporters would guard his secret, Dreier has amassed an antigay voting record so egregious that it has helped him garner a 92% approval rating from the Christian Coalition. Apparently the evangelical group failed to notice that Dreier’s roommate and constant companion is none other than Brad W. Smith, his appropriately entitled chief of staff.

Smith must be worth his weight in gold, as Dreier is paying his major domo the highest salary he legally can: $156,600 a year. That’s just $400 less than White House heavyweights Karl Rove and Andy Card.

This rankles John Byrne, editor of, who recently began to investigate Dreier’s secret life after learning that gay activist Michael Rogers was already hammering the issue of the congressman’s sexuality on “Brad Smith is paid both from the Rules Committee and from Dreier’s office, which is not unheard of,” Byrne points out. “It’s allowed, but the [staff for] Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, the Appropriations Committee—those people are only paid from the congressmen’s office.”

Brad Smith currently collects $106,000 from the Rules Committee on top of his $50,600 office earnings. “His salary from Dreier’s office went down when he joined the Rules Committee,” Byrne continues, but remained locked in at $156,600. “There’s a rule that says that if you’re going to pay people from the committee, it shouldn’t be as an expense of your own office—like you shouldn’t be using committee funds to pay for someone who you’re paying for basically anyway.”
Dreier and Smith have shown a taste for jet-setting together as well. During the past three years they have traveled to at least 25 countries together on the taxpayers’ dime, spending 45 days abroad in locales that traditionally attract frolicking lovers: Italy and Spain, as well as a few destinations off the beaten path, including Sri Lanka, Micronesia and Iceland.

“It’s common knowledge up on the Hill that David Dreier is just a big, huge fag,” said Randy Economy, campaign manager for Dr. Janice Nelson-Hayes, the congressman’s Democratic opponent in 1998 and 2000. Economy (who is openly gay) indicated that, despite compelling evidence of Dreier’s carefully guarded sexual orientation, candidate Nelson-Hayes passed on making it an issue in her last campaign.

“There were issues out there and evidence that this living situation occurred and the payment that he was making to his chief of staff,” Nelson-Hayes declared. “We just decided that we weren’t going to go into that because we didn’t know how many other members of Congress had loved ones, family members, spouses, significant others working in their offices.”

A longtime Democratic adviser with numerous campaigns under his belt, Economy said Dreier’s gay life is valid for discussion, since public policy that affects millions of people is at stake. “I know the pain that people go through in this process here,” Economy said. “But [Dreier] has got to deal with this stuff because now he is [advocating] positions against the community and against himself, and it’s not right. His lover is benefiting from it; therefore he’s benefiting from it, and that’s just not fair and possibly not legal.”

Although the story exploded on the Internet and was picked up by the LA Weekly, it is uncertain if Dreier will in fact have to deal with it. As this issue of HUSTLER went to press, the congressman continued to enjoy the same veil of protection from the newspapers in his home district, with not a single word published covering his gay life versus his voting record, and his personal relationship with Brad Smith or their expenses.

Editors, notably Steve Scauzillo, have nervously refused to comment. Meanwhile Val Marrs has abruptly changed her story, claiming she was “misquoted and quoted out of context” during her 1996 interview with Low Magazine. Asked to clarify that, Marrs screamed, “I can’t talk about it!” and hung up.

Now 52, David Timothy Dreier himself has remained hunkered down, floating vague nondenial denials through unnamed surrogates on various Web sites. Attending the Republican National Convention in New York City, Dreier was confronted on satellite radio and asked if he was heterosexual. Apparently flustered, the legislator said he wasn’t there to “talk about that.”

Dreier never has been “there” to talk about it, even as homosexuals have been fired, smeared and even murdered for simply being gay.
And that’s the shame of it all.


2004: Voted for the Marriage Protection Act. 2001: Supported legislation allowing federally funded charities to discriminate against gays and lesbians, despite local laws. 1999: Opposed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (as he had in 1996 and ’97). 1998: Voted to prohibit gays and lesbians in the District of Columbia from adopting children (D.C. is 3,000 miles from Dreier’s own district); opposed restoration of funding to the Housing Opportunities for People with AIDS program. 1997: Opposed the Hate Crimes Prevention Act; opposed increases in state AIDS Drug Assistance Programs. 1996: Voted for the Defense of Marriage Act; opposed the Housing Opportunities for People With AIDS program.

Award-winning journalist Michael Collins contributes frequently to Los Angeles City Beat, LA Weekly and HUSTLER.

Features Editor Mark Cromer first interviewed David Dreier in 1988, when the congressman told him that magazines which featured “pregnant lesbians” were not protected by the First Amendment. As an admirer of pregnant lesbians, Cromer is just glad the courts feel differently."

Help Fallujah in Pictures

A competing vision of the Fallujah operation is presented by the blog titled “Iraq in Pictures” (, which Krohn says is far more similar to what Iraqis, and the Arab world, see on their satellite news channels.

The site has become one of the hotter blogs on the Internet, receiving thousands of visits a day.

In the version of the Web site that was up last week, the first image on the site showed a malnourished Iraqi baby, wide-eyed and screaming in pain, under the sarcastic headline, “another grateful Iraqi civilian.”

Many of the photographs are far more graphic than are usually carried in newspapers, showing headless bodies, bloodied troops, wounded women, and bandaged babies missing limbs. The Seattle Times generally does not run extremely gory photos, but it has run a number of pictures of the violence in Iraq, including those of slain American civilians hanging from a bridge in Fallujah and U.S. soldiers abusing prisoners at the Abu Ghraib prison.

One photo added to the blog recently shows a U.S. soldier with part of his face blown away by a bomb.

The blog also amounts to a critique of the U.S. news media. Another section of the site, under the headline, “Also not in today’s news,” shows a photograph of a Marine propped against a concrete wall, grimacing as he is treated for a shrapnel wound in his upper right leg.

The blogger — who in an e-mail responding to a query identified himself as “Hugh Upton,” but when questioned said that was a pseudonym — explained on his Web site that one of its purposes is to show the ugliness of what he believes is really going on in Iraq.

“The world sees these images and we do not,” he states. “That scares the hell out of me, as it should you.”

This guy is sharing things that the US Media probably never will, sadly. He's also recently posted his first appeal for donations to keep the site going. Obviously, Bush is helping keep too many of us who would oppose what he's doing in Iraq too poor to really help, but those of you out there who can, should. And everyone should at least visit the site and lend your support by seeing the work he's done.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Bush's Draft.

I saw this story on 60 Minutes tonight as I was flipping channels. This is soooo wrong on sooo many levels.

Many men and women answered America's call and served in the U.S. Army in a noble manner( unlike Dick Cheney who was 'too busy' for service), they did their time( unlike W. who went MIA from the NATIONAL GUARD) and then they thought they were done serving( sort of like when W. got his deferment so he could go to grad school)- THESE people are being called back into action because W. needs warm bodies in Iraq.

This is not an all volunteer army anymore more- this is Karl Rove going 'How can I get people to Iraq WITHOUT calling it a draft???"( Rove also didn't serve in the Army).

This is horrid. They are using legal loopholes to make people go and die for their mistakes.

Shame on them. Shame on W. Shame on Cheney. Shame on Rove. Shame on Tom DeLay.

And right now I feel SHAME on everyone between the age of 20-50 who voted for W. and has NOT signed up for service. Obviously these people believe that the war in Iraq is important... So why aren't THEY serving?

Saturday, December 04, 2004

"It sounds like Nazi book burning to me"

Gay book ban goal of state lawmaker
Wednesday, December 01, 2004
News staff writer
The Birmingham News

"MONTGOMERY - An Alabama lawmaker who sought to ban gay marriages now wants to ban novels with gay characters from public libraries, including university libraries.

A bill by Rep. Gerald Allen, R-Cottondale, would prohibit the use of public funds for "the purchase of textbooks or library materials that recognize or promote homosexuality as an acceptable lifestyle." Allen said he filed the bill to protect children from the "homosexual agenda." (Evan: What exactly is their agenda anyway? Force straights to be well groomed, clean regularly and live in nicely decorated homes? I will NOT stand for it!)

"Our culture, how we know it today, is under attack from every angle," Allen said in a press conference Tuesday. (Evan: Yeah, by fascist control freaks like those who want to burn books)

Allen said that if his bill passes, novels with gay protagonists and college textbooks that suggest homosexuality is natural would have to be removed from library shelves and destroyed.

"I guess we dig a big hole and dump them in and bury them," he said. (Evan: Don't fall in, bub)

A spokesman for the Montgomery-based Southern Poverty Law Center called the bill censorship.

"It sounds like Nazi book burning to me," said SPLC spokesman Mark Potok.

Allen pre-filed his bill in advance of the 2005 legislative session, which begins Feb. 1.

If the bill became law, public school textbooks could not present homosexuality as a genetic trait and public libraries couldn't offer books with gay or bisexual characters. (Evan: What about asexual characters? I understand that's a growing lifestyle among humans. It's not just for amoebas anymore.)

When asked about Tennessee Williams' southern classic "Cat On A Hot Tin Roof," Allen said the play probably couldn't be performed by university theater groups.

Allen said no state funds should be used to pay for materials that foster homosexuality. (Evan: Because "Cat On A Hot Tion Roof" and "the Color Purple" really make me want to go out and suck cock.) He said that would include nonfiction books that suggest homosexuality is acceptable and fiction novels with gay characters. While that would ban books like "Heather has Two Mommies," it could also include classic and popular novels with gay characters such as "The Color Purple," "The Picture of Dorian Gray" and "Brideshead Revisted."

The bill also would ban materials that recognize or promote a lifestyle or actions prohibited by the sodomy and sexual misconduct laws of Alabama. Allen said that meant books with heterosexual couples committing those acts likely would be banned, too. (Evan: There goes the Starr Report on Clinton's sex scandal.)

His bill also would prohibit a teacher from handing out materials or bringing in a classroom speaker who suggested homosexuality was OK, he said.

Allen has sponsored legislation to make a gay marriage ban part of the Alabama Constitution, but it was not approved by the Legislature. (Evan: How is it that Oregon banned gay marriage and Alabama didn't? This baffles me even more than the idea that an Alabaman lawmaker wants to burn books.)

Ken Baker, a board member of Equality Alabama, a gay rights organization, said Allen was "attempting to become the George Wallace of homosexuality."

Aside from the moral debates, the bill could be problematic for library collections, said Jaunita Owes, director of the Montgomery City-County Library, which is a few blocks from the Alabama Capitol.

"Half the books in the library could end up being banned. It's all based on how one interprets the material," Owes said."


Some abstinence programs misleading

Wouldn't you expect, with the hundreds of millions we've already spent on abstinence-only education that, if it worked, there should be a marked decrease in disease spread and unwanted pregnancies?

Of course, maybe it would help if these courses actually taught accurate information as well:

"Many American youngsters participating in federally funded abstinence-only programs have been taught over the past three years that abortion can lead to sterility and suicide, that half the gay male teenagers in the United States have tested positive for the AIDS virus, and that touching a person's genitals "can result in pregnancy," a congressional staff analysis has found...

Among the misconceptions cited by Waxman's investigators:

• A 43-day-old fetus is a "thinking person."

• HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, can be spread via sweat and tears.

• Condoms fail to prevent HIV transmission as often as 31 percent of the time in heterosexual intercourse.

One curriculum, called "Me, My World, My Future," teaches that women who have an abortion "are more prone to suicide" and that as many as 10 percent of them become sterile. This contradicts the 2001 edition of a standard obstetrics textbook that says fertility is not affected by elective abortion, the Waxman report said...

'Seriously wrong'
"I have no objection talking about abstinence as a surefire way to prevent unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases," Waxman said. "I don't think we ought to lie to our children about science. Something is seriously wrong when federal tax dollars are being used to mislead kids about basic health facts..."

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Marriage and Procreation: On Children As The First Purpose of Marriage - October 20, 2004

So much of what follows this passage (find it in its entirety in the link) supports finding ways to get around this basic and accurate argument that gay marriage should be banned because of non-procreation is a poor argument. What follows here, though, is the meat of that discussion, showing how any attempts by folks to say gay marriage should be banned because marriage is meant only for sanctifying procreation is entirely laughable:

"When Massachusetts officials facing the court case Goodridge v. Department of Public Health set out to defend that state's marriage law from a challenge by seven homosexual couples, their major line of defense was procreation. Making babies, the state argued, was the first purpose of marriage. By definition, same-sex partners could not create a child as a couple. This was important, the argument continued, because children usually do best when growing up with their two natural parents. Moreover, requiring fertility tests before marriage by opposite-sex couples would be cumbersome and overly intrusive. It was better to let all otherwise qualified opposite-sex couples to marry than to go down that troubling regulatory path.

And the initial trial court, let us remember, agreed with the state. The judge ruled that the primary purpose of marriage, under Massachusetts law, was in fact procreation. Accordingly, the court concluded that the state could reasonably distinguish between homosexual claimants to marriage and those heterosexual couples that were at least "theoretically ... capable" of procreation without relying on "inherently more cumbersome" non-coital reproductive methods.[1]

Even Evan Wolfson, the acknowledged leader of the "gay marriage" movement, has agreed that:

At first glance, the "basic biology" argument seems to make some sense. After all, it doesn't take more than a fourth-grade health class education to know that men's and women's bodies in some sense "complement each other" and that when a man and a woman come "together as one flesh" it often leads to procreation.[2]
But of course, the trial court decision did not survive appeal to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. This higher court, on a 4-3 vote, dismissed the procreation argument, pointing to opposite-sex couples in which the woman was over childbearing age or otherwise infertile. Could the state "rationally" tell them that they could not marry? It could not. Indeed, the court noted that, under state law, even those "who cannot stir from their death bed may marry," provided they were of the opposite sex. Moreover, infertility is not grounds for divorce, and so by inference it is not a bar to marriage, either. In addition, the court noted that Massachusetts law protects the parental rights of homosexuals and allows same-sex couples to adopt children. It was irrational for the state to enable "gay parenting" while also denying the children involved the benefits of "family stability and economic security" found in a marital home.

Evan Wolfson also moves on to dissect the procreation argument, finding it "riddled with holes." If procreation is the purpose of marriage, he argues, then the marriages of Bob and Elizabeth Dole, John and Teresa Heinz Kerry, and Pat and Shelley Buchanan should all be declared invalid. So should the marriage of the father of our country, George Washington, to Martha, which produced no children. Another same-sex activist, Dale Carpenter, argues that if there were any merit to the procreation argument:

We would require prospective married couples to sign an affidavit stating that they are able to procreate and intend to procreate. If in, say, 10 years they had not procreated, we could presume they are unable or unwilling to do so and could dissolve the marriage as unworthy of the unique institution.
He adds that since no one has really proposed this, or anything like it, it is clear that the defenders of marriage "do not take the narrow procreationist view of marriage very seriously." Instead, he says, the traditionalists impose another rule: "Nobody is required to procreate in order to marry, except gay couples." Such discrimination, he implies, could not survive a test by the "equal protection clause" of the Fourteenth Amendment.[3] Indeed, that usually faithful, conservative Supreme Court justice, Antonin Scalia, in his 2003 dissent in Lawrence v. Texas, noted:

If moral disapprobation of homosexual conduct is 'no state interest' for purposes of proscribing [private adult sex], what justification could there possibly be for denying the benefits of marriage to homosexual couples? Surely not the encouragement of procreation, since the sterile and the elderly are allowed to marry.[4]
It is fair to conclude, I think, that the procreation argument is in serious trouble."

Supreme Court Rejects Appeal of Gay Marriage Law

So the SC chose not to hear any appeals to ban gay marriage in Massachusetts. To some this may feel like a victory, and it can definitely be a stepping stone on the way towards victory--though it could be said stepping stone in either direction.

It would definitely have been more in favor of defending/promoting gay marriage had the SC decided to hear the appeal and then rejected it, making the ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional. By not doing this, it gives room to set up more cases of allowable same sex unions, but it also allows for the continued attack on same sex marriage being waged across the nation. It still leaves the door open for Bush to try and edge his Anti-gay Marriage Amendment in.

All moral hang-ups aside--it's not as if homosexuals are trying to force straights into marrying them, so what's the big problem? Homosexuals getting married isn't going to cause society to crumble. Has Mass. become a hedonistic neo Sodom and Gammorah? Is civilization there ending?

Aren't there more important things to worry about than legislation saying Johnny can't marry Steve?