Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Lessons In Life

This is why we don't have a television:

Cathy's dogs make a good point. Residing in the Philippines, a major source of jobs outsourced from the US, this seems to strike me all the more funny...and I feel sad for those little cartoon doggies!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Yeah, It's Like That!

I just had no idea it was education via cable television!

Is this what cats get out of our programs? A kind of hidden signal buried in a wavelength humans can't perceive?!


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Oh, What Next?

School Costume Event Draws Church Ire
by The Associated Press

Posted: April 7, 2008 - 5:00 pm ET

(Reedsburg, Wisconsin) An elementary-school event in which kids were encouraged to dress as members of the opposite gender drew the ire of a Christian radio group, whose angry broadcast prompted outraged calls to the district office.

Students at Pineview Elementary in Reedsburg had been dressing in costume all last week as part of an annual school tradition called Wacky Week.

On Friday, students were encouraged to dress either as senior citizens or as members of the opposite sex.

A local resident informed the Voice of Christian Youth America on Friday.

The Milwaukee-based radio network responded by interrupting its morning programming for a special broadcast that aired on nine radio stations throughout Wisconsin.

The broadcast criticized the dress-up day and accused the district of promoting alternative lifestyles.

``We believe it's the wrong message to send to elementary students,'' said Jim Schneider, the network's program director. ``Our station is one that promotes traditional family values.

``It concerns us when a school district strikes at the heart and core of the Biblical values. To promote this to elementary-school students is a great error.''

Schneider co-hosts ``Crosstalk,'' a nationally syndicated call-in Christian radio show.

After the program aired, both the school and Reedsburg School District office were flooded with calls complaining about the event.

The response surprised Principal Tammy Hayes, who said no-one had raised any objections beforehand.

She said a flier detailing Wacky Week had been sent home with children the prior week, and an announcement was also included in teacher newsletters.

The dress-up day was not an attempt to promote cross-dressing, homosexuality or alternative gender roles, district administrator Tom Benson said.

``The promotion of transgenderism _ that was not our purpose,'' Benson told the Baraboo News Republic. ``Our purpose was to have a Wacky Week, mixing in a bit of silliness with our reading, writing and arithmetic.''

This is a prime example of what is wrong with the world today.

Completely missing the point that it is "WACKY WEEK" at the school, some moron could only see that the kids were encouraged to dress as someone of the opposite sex.

They ignored the dressing as someone elderly option.
They ignored that this was in the spirit of fun.
They ignored that this makes the kids use their minds and be creative.


They are ignorant!

So now a whole brouhaha has erupted from some innocent fun.

I suppose the same people who are aghast at this were adversely affected by Jack Benny, Jackie Gleason, Bob Hope, Milton Berle, Harvey Korman, Dustin Hoffman, Patrick Swayze, John Leguizamo, Wesley Snipes and Robin Williams dressing as women as well. We can see how dressing as women led to those actors' slippery slopes towards Hell.

Why can't these righteous, pompously pious, I-must-stick-my-nose-into-someone-else's-business "Christians" (I quote that because we all know they are not) keep their "family values" to themselves?

If they never want to experience any fun at all, that's fine by me. The school here is just trying to get the kids to engage in an activity that exercises their creativity. Disguised as fun, (which being creative is) this helps to exercise a part of the kids' minds that is unfortunately neglected in today's world of standardized tests and budgetary constraints. Art and music education aids children in learning how to "think outside the box" and develop problem-solving skills they need for math and science.

Oh, I forgot...fundamentalist Christians don't want those kind of "smart (aleck) kids"...

Friday, April 4, 2008

Love Shoe!

Clinton talks; Obama balks

By Mark Segal and Sarah Blazucki
(c) 2008 Philadelphia Gay News

The Democratic race for president has been heating up for months. And
where once eight contenders graced the national stage, only two have
made it to Pennsylvania' s primary: Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack
Obama. In these months, an alliance of LGBT papers sought to speak with
the top three contenders - Clinton, Obama and former Sen. John Edwards -
to no avail. Now, with the delegate spread hovering around 150, smaller
constituencies, including the LGBT community and their superdelegates,
are playing a larger role.

PGN invited both Clinton and Obama, as well as presumptive Republican
candidate John McCain, to speak with us. Only Clinton granted an

PGN: I assume that you and President Clinton have gay friends. Can you
give me your impression of one of those couples that you socialize with,
without giving any names?
Hillary Clinton: Oh my gosh. There are so many of them. I know that Mark
[Walsh, Clinton's national director of LGBT outreach] is on the phone.
Let me say this, we don't get to socialize a lot. But when we do, it's
usually at a big event where we get to see people and spend time with
them. This is something I want to do more of as soon as I finish this
presidential campaign. It's sort of hard to pick out people. We go to
some events in Washington and New York. I've got friends, literally,
around the country that I'm close to. It's part of my life.

PGN: How would you respond to those friends if they asked you why they
can't get married?
HC: What I say is that marriage is in the province of the state, which
has actually turned out to be lucky for us, because we didn't have to
get beaten on the Federal Marriage Amendment because we could make,
among other arguments, that it was such a stretch for the federal
government and it was wrong to enshrine discrimination in the
Constitution. And that states are really beginning seriously to deal
with the whole range of options, including marriage, both under their
own state constitutions and under the legislative approach. I anticipate
that there will be a very concerted amount of effort in the next couple
of years that will move this important issue forward and different
states will take different approaches as they did with marriage over
many years and you will see an evolution over time.

PGN: What will you do to improve the immigration policy for same-sex
HC: I think that that's one of the biggest problems that we've got to
contend with. Even states that have civil unions, domestic partnerships
or even marriage laws are running into roadblocks with the federal
government when it comes to federal benefits and privileges. Of course,
immigration is a federal responsibility and I am going to do everything
I can to eliminate any disparities in any benefits or rights under our
law at the federal level so that all people will have available to them
every right as an American citizen that they should, and that would
include immigration law.

PGN: What changes would you make toward governments that execute gay
people, such as Iran, Egypt and Iraq and numerous other countries in the
Middle East and Africa? Will you offer political asylum?
HC: I would be very strongly outspoken about this and it would be part
of American foreign policy. There are a number of gross human-rights
abuses that countries engage in with whom we have relations and we have
to be really vigilant and outspoken in our total repudiation of those
kinds of actions and do everything we can, including using our leverage
on matters such as aid, to change the behavior so we can try to prevent
such atrocities from happening.

PGN: In 1948, President Truman issued an executive order banning
discrimination based on race. Would you issue an executive order or a
signing order with a military appropriations bill to temporarily - until
Congress had a chance to deal with it - end "Don't Ask, Don't Tell?"
HC: If I were legally able to do it. I don't know what the legal
framework would be because you remember that, in the face of what Bill
[Clinton] was trying to do in '93, the act, by veto, proved majorities
made prohibitions on doing that. So whether the president has authority
to do it by executive order or not, I'm not sure. But I have been
committed for more than nine years to eliminating "Don't Ask, Don't

PGN: Could you do so via a signing order connected to a military
appropriations bill?
HC: No. I don't think so. I will have that examined, but I don't think
so. What a signing order can do, a signing statement, what Bush has
done, is to say you're not going to enforce certain aspects of a law
that's been passed. This is different. There's a law already on the
books, which says the president cannot waive "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."
But nobody has ever asked it of me quite like that. I don't think the
president would have the authority. I think we'd have to get it changed
by legislation, but I will look into that.

PGN: You co-sponsored the Domestic-Partnershi p Benefits and Obligation
Act for federal employees. Would you support federal domestic-partner
legislation to give rights to all LGBT citizens, not just federal
HC: Of course. But I think the reason why I have zeroed in on the
Obligations Act is because that's what's in the province of the federal
government and I think we might be able to get that passed. But I would
certainly sign anything that was broader too.

PGN: In states like New Jersey and Massachusetts and others that have
passed domestic-partner bills or civil-union bills, one of the major
roadblocks they find is the federal tax codes or joint filings for IRS
returns. What could we do about that?
HC: That's one of the laws we have to change. I will have a
comprehensive review, and I think a lot of that work has already been
done, to look at everything that is discriminatory in the tax code or in
any other aspect of federal law. And we will try to eliminate all of
that discrimination. I think we will have a good argument, ironically,
because I think we can say, look, the states are making determinations
about extending rights to same-sex couples in various forms and the
federal government should recognize that and should extend the same
access to federal benefits across the board. I will very much work to
achieve that.

PGN: Should the Department of Education give local school districts and
teachers direction on presenting GLBT-positive lesson plans?
HC: That's an area that you can get direction from the federal
government but the federal government doesn't have any real authority. I
think there was some guidance given during the Clinton administration
and I will look into that and see if there is some additional guidance
that could be given.

PGN: Currently before the Pennsylvania legislature is an anti-gay
marriage bill that would be on the Pennsylvania ballot in 2010, when
your colleague, Sen. Arlen Specter, is up for reelection. What advice
would you give him and our legislators?
HC: Don't pass it. I really hope that that doesn't go anywhere. I would
be very distressed if Pennsylvania were to adopt that kind of
mean-spirited referendum and I hope it won't happen.

PGN: How would you improve services for GLBT youth and seniors?
HC: I would be guided by advice by the LGBT community about the
additional kind of services that would be needed on top of the general
services that were available. For example, I've done a lot of work in
supporting the LGBT community here in New York to deal with the special
problems that adolescents face: the high suicide rates, the sense of
alienation and the experiences with bullies. I think there's a lot of
very specific and difficult challenges that LGBT young people face.
Obviously, I want to protect our young people and I want to give them
access to the services that they need. I believe the idea of guidance at
schools is important so that schools are well aware of how much more
intense the mistreatment of LGBT kids happens to be. I think we need to
do everything we can to try to protect our kids and give them a chance
to have a productive and safe childhood and adolescence, and I would
certainly zero in on that.

PGN: As first lady and as senator, you've lent your presence and support
to various gay organizations by being present at gay Pride celebrations
and so forth. When elected president, would you continue to do such?
HC: To the extent that security would permit. That's one of the
challenges of being president. I don't think the Secret Service let Bill
walk in a parade when he became president. I had a lot more flexibility
as first lady. I have more flexibility as a senator. I'll see how much
they try to trim my sails as president.

PGN: If you win the nomination, will you speak with PGN as the
Democratic nominee for president?
HC: Absolutely and I'll speak to you as president.