Monday, June 30, 2008

The art of hypocrisy - how to speak out of boths sides of your mouth.

Obama disowns critique of McCain's military record - Yahoo! News
Democrat Barack Obama rejected a retired general's suggestion that Republican John McCain's military experience didn't necessarily qualify him to be president, as GOP surrogates lined up to label the remarks indecent and disrespectful.

Conservatives are experts at speaking out of both sides of their mouths... The latest case in point: They seem outraged at Gen W. Clark's comments about McCain's experience. I don't know, but I'd bet many of these folks were the same people that wore "purple band-aids" at the 2004 Republican convention denoting their contempt for John Kerry's service (and his purple hearts). The fact that those that served with him said he served bravely and honorably in Vietnam... the fact that he served in a combat zone, well - apparently that wasn't enough to earn him the title "patriot".

I guess you only have to respect the service of conservatives.

Quote for the day...

"Why should I allow that same God to tell me how to raise my kids, who had to drown His own?"

-- Bertrand Russell

Friday, June 06, 2008

Dawkins on science - TED

If you haven't discovered TED - Ideas worth sharing -- I suggest you check it out...

The site has videos and discussions on everything from entertainment to cosmology... by some of the best thinkers and doers of our time...

This video, by Richard Dawkins, is a good example -- check it out:

"The universe is queerer than we can suppose..."

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Those Damn Activist Judges!

Anti-miscegenation laws - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Loving v. Virginia

The plaintiffs in Loving v. Virginia, Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving

All bans on interracial marriage were lifted only after an interracial couple from Virginia, Richard and Mildred Loving, began a legal battle in 1963 for the repeal of the anti-miscegenation law which prevented them from living as a couple in their home state of Virginia. The Lovings were supported by the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the Japanese American Citizens League and a coalition of Catholic bishops.

In 1958, Richard and Mildred Loving had married in Washington, D.C. to evade Virginia's anti-miscegenation law (the Racial Integrity Act). Having returned to Virginia, they were arrested in their bedroom for living together as an interracial couple. The judge suspended their sentence on the condition that the Lovings would leave Virginia and not return for 25 years. In 1963, the Lovings, who had moved to Washington, D.C, decided to appeal this judgment. In 1965, Virginia trial court Judge Leon Bazile, who heard their original case, refused to reconsider his decision. Instead, he defended racial segregation, writing:

Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.[16]

The Lovings then took their case to the Supreme Court of Virginia, which invalidated the original sentence but upheld the state's Racial Integrity Act. Finally, the Lovings turned to the U.S Supreme Court. The court, which had previously avoided taking miscegenation cases, agreed to hear an appeal. In 1967, 84 years after Pace v. Alabama in 1883, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously in Loving v. Virginia that:

Marriage is one of the 'basic civil rights of man,' fundamental to our very existence and survival.... To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State's citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discriminations. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not to marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State.

Sound familiar?

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

The Great Gay Debate... why?

Gay marriage...

For some reason I cannot fathom many still consider it an "issue" ... and an institution that need "protecting". I guess I've completely missed the boat because I don't understand: if the government can decide that "this couple" can have these rights, but "that couple" can't -- how is that "protecting" anything?

If I marry another man -- how does that in ANY WAY effect a heterosexual couples marriage?

Many people also seem to forget our government previous efforts to "protect" marriage by legal barring interracial marriage (again - the populace, thru our elected representatives, felt it necessary to do this). The results were abominable laws like the Virginia "Racial Integrity Act".

All of the arguments I've heard against gay marriage are essentially re-hashes of those old ones: "marriage is for 'us' -- and we don't want the concept contaminated by 'your version' of love".

That's what the California Supreme Court said when it ruled that gay couples should have the right to marry as a matter of basic equality. Before you could say "Jonathan and Andrew request the honour of your presence," opponents were suggesting that civilization would crash and burn if two guys could register at Pottery Barn and raise kids in a ranch house.

I think it all comes down to this: many people don't like the idea of two men (or two women) shacking up... Marriage legitimizes these relationships and that idea scares people. The "protect marriage" argument is simply code for "these relationships aren't natural -- they gross me out -- I don't want them recognize" ...

I could be wrong -- but someone has to explain to me what -- exactly -- is being protected.

Capt Fogg put it best in his blog:
Regardless of the now apparently reduced sanctity of my own marriage [referring to the Calif ruling], I continued to wait for my dear wife to have her X-ray with undiminished dedication.

Sanctity, of course is indeed a subject that our Federal Constitution excludes from the business of government. Establishing religious rules or laws based on religious rules is specifically forbidden and not applying any laws in a discriminatory fashion, whether based on religious taboos or not, has long been established in the law. What does CNN mean to imply here: that we should get rid of that nasty secular Democracy thing so we can all be holy? What else can we infer?
Lets just move on... This should be a non-issue in a liberal, secular democracy (that is where we live right?)...