I’ll tell you what you can do with your gun!

July 26, 2012 at 3:34 pm | Posted in tragedy, U.S. Constitution, violence | Leave a comment
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If Congress truly represents us…

August 17, 2011 at 10:21 am | Posted in government, political, U.S. Constitution | 2 Comments
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I received the following in an email, with a request that include it in a blog post.  I thought it was worth sharing for its well thought out ideas that would be good for our country.  However,  when I expressed my doubts, to the sender, about the lack of members of congress lining up to jump on the bandwagon he had this to say.

It’s a pipe dream. Still, there’s no harm in spreading it around. The more people that see it, the better the chances that some of them will say something to “their” politician, or will write a letter to the editor, or some damn thing. Even if it does nothing else, it educates: Most people don’t know about the special services that are available (at taxpayer expense) to legislators. The more of them that find out, the more of them that’ll be pissed, and that’s a good thing!

And who knows? Maybe someone will run on parts of it! (Probably not an incumbent, though…….)

I think we are all pretty sick of Congress’s shenanigans. Maybe if its members were brought down a peg, they might feel more like taking better care of the American people instead of worrying so much about themselves and their next election chances. I think the ideas put forth in this message about a Congressional Reform Act make a lot of sense, so I am passing it on.

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. (And that was in 1971… before computers, before e-mail, before cell phones, etc.)

Now, I’m asking each everyone to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list, and in addition, to ask each of those to do likewise. In three days, most people in the United States will have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

Congressional Reform Act of 2011

1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security.
All funds in the Congressional Retirement Fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. These monies may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress purchases their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people. No exceptions, and no immunity.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and go back to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people, it will only take three days for most people (in the U.S.) to receive the message. And it is past time.

THIS IS HOW WE FIX CONGRESS!!!!!

If you agree with the above, pass it on. If not, just delete. You are one of my 20+. Please keep it going.

Christian fundamentalists are different from radical Muslims how?

May 30, 2011 at 9:27 am | Posted in Atheism, Beliefs, civil liberties, god, hypocrisy, irony, Religion, U.S. Constitution | 23 Comments
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Christians love to claim we are a nation founded in christianity (if you know me, then you know the c word gets capitalized only at the beginning of sentences).  I guess if I really think about it I can’t argue with that premise.  We did capture and enslave people, treated them like property, abused them, sold their children, and got rich off their backs for hundreds of years; it doesn’t get more christian-like than that.  Our christianity includes burning women accused of witchcraft, bombing abortion clinics, beating and killing people for being gay…and the list goes on.

For years christianity has been shoved down the throats of everyone who is not christian.  A few examples: prayer in schools, the addition of god to the pledge of allegiance, opening government functions with prayer, hearing our political leaders making religious references.  I’ll be so happy if the christians ever get the date right, and the rapture, or as I like to call it, lift-off, actually occurs.  I get first dibs on all their stuff…just letting you know.  Let us pray that it happens sooner rather than later.

So now this kid in Louisiana, who happens to be an atheist, has received death threats, from the good christian people, because of his opposition to the inclusion of prayer in his high school graduation ceremony.  His own parents threw him out of the house; how christian is that?

From the freethinker:

NORTH LOUISIANA has been described as “the buckle on the Bible Belt” – and not without good reason, as high school student Damon Fowler at Bastrop High School has discovered to his cost.

Damon Fowler: demonised, ostracized and threatened with death

On the eve of his graduation, the atheist student contacted the school superintendent to let him know that he opposed the inclusion of a prayer at the graduation ceremony. He pointed out that government-sponsored prayer in the public schools was unconstitutional and legally forbidden – and that he would be contacting the ACLU if it went ahead. The school agreed to substitute it with a moment of silent reflection, which was subsequently scuppered by a Christian student.

Then Fowler’s name, and his role in this incident, was leaked. As a direct result:

1) Fowler has been hounded, pilloried, and ostracized by his community.

2) One of Fowler’s teachers has publicly demeaned him.

3) Fowler has been physically threatened. Students have threatened to “jump him” at graduation practice, and he has received multiple threats of bodily harm, and even death threats.

4) Fowler’s parents cut off his financial support, kicked him out of the house, and threw his belongings onto the front porch.     read more

Don’t the christians have a saying about he who is without sin should not cast stones, or something like that?  Rather ironic isn’t it?

The State of Hypocrisy Address

January 25, 2011 at 10:20 pm | Posted in civil liberties, government, hypocrisy, Obama, U.S. Constitution | 4 Comments
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Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, while delivering the republican response to Obama’s State of the Union Address, really irked me when he said the following:

We believe, as our founders did, that “the pursuit of happiness” depends upon individual liberty; and individual liberty requires limited government.

Where was this concept of limited government for individual liberty when same sex couples wanted the right to marry, when gays wanted to serve openly in the military, when it came to a woman’s right to choose what to do with her own body?  By and large the opposition to these issues, and others, comes from republicans, so here is my question to the GOP.  Is the individual liberty referred to in the above quote, individual liberty defined as you (the republican party) see it?  If it is then what Mr. Ryan should have done was to be more specific and said, “We believe, as our founders did, that “the pursuit of happiness” depends upon individual liberty; and individual liberty requires limited government unless you take liberties of which we do not approve.”

Any of our elected officials (you know, the ones sworn to uphold the constitution) who make statements like the one Ryan made, and do not live up to them, should be required to wear a scarlet H on their foreheads.

Constitution ala carte

August 25, 2010 at 9:47 am | Posted in Beliefs, bigotry, hypocrisy, Obama, political, political commentary, Religion, stupidity, terrorism, U.S. Constitution | 8 Comments
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Why are people under the impression that the United States constitution is like a menu at the local Burger King whose motto is have it your way; where they can choose from a list of items and make alterations or substitutions so they can have it just the way they like it?

Our special this week is the 14th amendment.  It comes with citizenship for anyone born in the United States and a side of protected rights for same.  This hasn’t really been a big seller this week.  For some reason many people want it off the menu completely while others want so many substitutions and changes that some of the wait staff has been reduced to tears and others have threatened to quit.

If you’re not sure what to order and want a recommendation, go with the 2nd amendment.  That has been such a popular choice that we could take all the other amendments off the menu and hardly anyone would care.

Freedom of religion is a favorite of the christian crowd, so much so they want to keep it all for themselves.  Another one they are marking their territory over is marriage.  They don’t want anyone to have this menu item who isn’t like them, not gay.  However, they have no trouble accepting and reaping the benefits of the tax money from those they would deny this choice.

This constitution ala carte mentality has manifested in a number of ways over the last several weeks and months.  A big one is the proposed Mosque at ground zero, which isn’t actually a Mosque and isn’t actually at ground zero, but hey, why bother with actual facts.  I really wish people could understand that when you deny any group of citizens or legal residents of our country the rights and freedoms you enjoy, you ultimately deny yourself of those rights. Why is this such a difficult concept?

Why bother fighting the christian right.  If you can’t beat them join them, so I’m in.  With my new found enlightenment I would like to offer a few suggestions.  For starters I think all christian churches in Salem, Massachusetts should be razed because to have them stand as a constant reminder to the descendants of those burned as witches by the Puritanical christians is extremely insensitive of us, don’t you think?  In fact I think any horrific act of violence or terrorism committed by a member or members (no matter how radical or fringe they may be) of a particular religious group should result in anything in the area of devastation that represents that religion  being destroyed.  It’s only fair, and as good christians don’t we say do unto others as you would have them do unto you?  We do want to be fair, don’t we?

Recently Dr. Laura , conservative, holier than thou, radio talk show host ordered up freedom of speech, hold the consequences.  Within days of her use of the N word and other offensive remarks, a video clip shows Dr. Laura explaining she is planning to quit radio because she wants to have her freedom of speech restored after the backlash of her racist tirade, including major sponsors jumping ship.  What she fails to understand is that freedom of speech is also freedom to make an idiot of yourself, to express yourself in a way that shows your true colors (no pun intended).  The right to freedom of speech, however, does not guarantee that if  your speech is offensive there will not be repercussions.

Welcome to the U.S.A. may I take your order?

Put That in your SB1070 pipe and smoke it

August 4, 2010 at 4:22 pm | Posted in economy, News, Obama, political, U.S. Constitution | Leave a comment
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As you probably know, Governor Jan Brewer, of Arizona has signed off on a very controversial immigration law, citing the Federal government’s failure at keeping illegal immigrants out of our country.  Syracuse University compiled statistics that indicate the Obama administration is deporting more illegal immigrants than ever before.  The graphs below reveal some interesting numbers.

Findings by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse show more illegal immigrants were removed from the United States during the first nine months of this fiscal year than during the same period in 2008, when Republican George W. Bush was president and controlled immigration enforcement.

The number of those ejected from the country between Oct. 1, 2009, and June 30 of this year is nearly twice as high as it was in the same period ending June 30, 2005.

The TRAC report also shows the Obama administration is devoting more resources to removing those who have committed serious crimes.

During the first nine months of the fiscal year, TRAC, using Immigration and Customs Enforcement data, figures 136,714 “criminal aliens” were deported. That same figure in 2008 was 85,334.  keep reading


NO racial profiling? Yeah right!

July 1, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Posted in civil liberties, government, U.S. Constitution | 2 Comments
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My state, Arizona, has been the talk of the nation because of the new immigration law, sb1070.  The law is being championed by some, while others challenge its constitutionality.  I happened to catch the local news, last night, and saw bits of the training video and training manual instructing law enforcement officers on the proper implementation of the new law.

Based on the parts I saw, more than a few points stand out as problematic.  I want to address two.  The first thing that bugged me was part of the video showing a racially ambiguous brown skinned male stating there would be no racial profiling used in the implementation of this law, and the law states that racial profiling is illegal.  Really?  So before sb1070 it was OK?  I was under the impression that racial profiling isn’t legal and hasn’t been legal anywhere in the U.S. for quite some time; yet blacks and Hispanics are more likely, than Caucasians, to be pulled over by the police.  If you are black, have black friends, or have listened to a black comedian you may have heard someone refer to having received a DWB, a play on DWI (or DUI) meaning driving while black.  They are more likely to be arrested, convicted of, and to receive stiffer sentences for the same offenses committed by whites.  Is there any reason to believe this will not also be the case in enforcement of sb1070?

The other point that gave me pause (and this goes to racial profiling as well) was the part of the video explaining that the law would be implemented during the course of other issues, such as traffic stops etc, when the officer has reason to believe the party or parties involved maybe in the country without proper documentation.  That’s pretty subjective isn’t it?  I wonder how many times an officer will believe someone is undocumented based on  skin color, accented speech, or clothing.  The examples, of why one might suspect legal status, given in the video, were about as lame as it can get: a man explaining that during a traffic stop you (the officer) ask the driver where he/she lives and the driver says he/she doesn’t know… they might be an illegal alien, or if there are other people in the vehicle and when asked who they are the driver claims not to know…they might be an illegal alien (this is beginning to sound like a Jeff Foxworthy bit).  I’ve seen a lot of stupid people but would anyone really be dumb enough to answer, “I don’t know” when asked where they live or the identities of their passengers?  If I were in a country illegally I imagine my lie/s would be well rehearsed and I would likely be carrying false documents.  Actually now that I think about it, there might very well be those dumb enough to give that answer, and I’ll bet a high proportion of them are U.S. citizens (yes, I will admit to having seen an episode or two of Cops).

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