Top Of My Head

Thoughts on everything from Politics to Video Games

Category: Civil Rights (page 2 of 2)

House Bans Base Chaplains’ Religious Freedoms

The House voted to ban Base Chaplains from being allowed to perform same-sex marriages. Talk about a blow against religious freedom. If a Chaplain’s religion or his own religious beliefs do not prevent him from performing a same-sex marriage, who the hell is the House of Representatives to prevent the marriage from taking place. I swear it is like the right-wing House hasn’t read the same Constitution as the rest of us.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;”

Shame on those House members who voted for the ban.

Posted from WordPress for Android

Wedding Bells for Everyone

Have you ever gone to a wedding and heard someone whisper, “I give it six months”?

Have you ever been the one doing the whispering? Be honest now.

Well, I’ll be honest, I have.

I have known couples where I didn’t give them six minutes who are still together twenty years later. And, I’ve seen couples whom I thought were perfect for each other who split up.  My mother always taught me that you don’t know what goes on in someone else’s relationship. She isn’t often right, but she is in this case.

Which brings me to the topic at hand – gay marriage. How can someone actually think that not allowing marriage for gay people is protecting straight marriage? How can anyone in this modern age propose to decide who should marry and who should not?

Isn’t that the samething as sitting in a church and passing judgment on your fellow human being’s love? And, in passing this judgement, you don’t even know the couple!

Why do Boehner, Palin and the rest of the right feel the need to “protect marriage”? Why isn’t he out to protect civil rights?

How can we decide that one couple deserves protections and special tax breaks while another couple doesn’t? I don’t think I would want that much power over another person – to determine the love of their life. It is a decision that should be left up to the individual couple.

You really want to protect marriage – how about mandatory pre-marital counseling and making it harder to get a divorce. That might “protect” marriage.

Posted from WordPress for Android

Obama’s DOMA Decision

Man, I’m torn.

On one hand, I’m thrilled that DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act) is probably going down.  On the other hand, I’m not happy about the way it is going to happen.

Here’s the thing, Obama is just plain wrong.  Yes, DOMA is unconstitutional.  Yes, DOMA makes some citizens of the United States unequal to other citizens.  Yes, I want to see DOMA gone.

However; there is a larger and more important issue at stake here.

If the Department of Justice doesn’t defend attacks on our laws in court, then no law is sound.  As much as I like Obama, this is a serious oversight on his part.  I would think that someone who specialized in Constitutional law would’ve had a little more sight into the big picture.  Calling on the Justice Department to not defend DOMA is wrong.  It sends the wrong message on our Nation’s laws.  It will allow the next President to decide that he doesn’t like a law and tell the DOJ to not do their job to defend our Nation’s laws.

I’ve heard talk among gay people that Obama hasn’t done enough for us.  But, seriously, did anyone really cast their vote for Obama thinking that him being President would mean gays and lesbians would be allowed to legally marry?  I know I didn’t.

I, also, believe that at this moment in time, we have more pressing matters.  Our economy – though it is improving – needs more hand holding.  We need to put the money taken from Social Security and put it back in.  We need to improve our education.  Gay marriage is a little low on the list.

I know President Obama is a politician and politicians do things to gain political power or to make their base happy (Can anyone say Scott Walker and Koch Industries?), but I a truly disappointed in Obama.  I expected more from him than a cold bone that will harm our legal system for years to come.  I wanted the DOJ to defend DOMA to their best of their abilities and then lose because the law is morally bankrupt and unconstitutional.  I wanted a ruling that would stick for years to come, not a band aid.

Obama should’ve come up with a better way to do this.

Freedom of Speech

When I go up to Green Bay to visit my beautiful grandsons there are some words I have to leave behind. Naturally, all words that are classified curse words are gone. Little ears have big mouths that repeat everything adults say. They, also, pay a lot more attention to me when I speak. I slipped a few months ago and said, “Son of a bitch” in front of Alex. Without missing a beat, he said, “Don’t you mean son of a biscuit, Nana?” (I say son of a biscuit quite a bit, I guess.)

There are other words I need to leave behind: Hate – hate is a naughty word according to Danny. You’re not allowed to say hate about anything, even that dumb AT&T commercial. Oops, there goes another one – no, not AT&T – dumb. Dumb is a naughty word so says Alex.  Nothing and no one is dumb. Not even those people who are (You know who you are). I must say these impositions on my free speech have made me more aware of what I say and how I say it. Instead of saying I hate that book, I need to say that I dislike it. It softens the tone. Instead of insulting someone with an insult by calling them dumb, I need to say something creative, like “You’re not the sharpest tool in the shed, are you?”

There are some who would say that I have the right to say what I want, when I want to say it and damn all of the consequences. But, I think that all changed just over two weeks ago in Tucson, at least for those of us who think for ourselves. Even though the shooter didn’t see any of the targets or crosshairs produced by both sides of the aisle (supposedly he didn’t, according to friends who had stopped seeing him months ago), the shooting brought attention and set our violent political discourse front and center. A quote from President Obama on the “Chicago Way” about bringing a gun to a knife fight (quoted from the movie The Untouchables) when taken out of context is sinister sounding. Cross hairs over Congresswoman Giffords’ AZ location seems erie and ill-advised.

Some people have taken to swinging the Constitution and the First Amendment around like somehow it is a blanket of protection.  “But, I have a right to say that.”  “Don’t criticize them, they have a right to say that.”   And, my favorite, “I would defend your right to speak.”  (No, no you wouldn’t.)

Moving to a nicer tone in our politics, coming together to meet in the middle is not a sign of weakness.  It isn’t some bad political correctness gone bad.  Neither side is completely wrong and neither side holds the ball when it comes to being right.

We are literally so caught up with listening to the pundits and the talking heads that we have forgotten what makes our country great – compromise, tolerance, acceptance of those who are different.  And, I’m guilty myself.  I hate dislike Sarah Palin’s politics and the way she turns everything around so that she is a great victim in all of everything, but I will do my best to not say anything that would be un-politically correct about her.

I’m not giving up my freedom of speech, I’m being more responsible with it.

When I was younger and my father was smarter, he once said something to me:  “Kid, swearing just shows your ignorance.  If you can’t root around your head for a better word, then you’re not smart enough to have the conversation.”

Come join me in a conversation.

Rand Paul’s Supporter: Tim Profitt “Not a big deal” to attack unarmed woman

Just when I thought that I had seen it all.  Just when I thought nothing in this political climate could surprise me, I see a video of the stomping of a MoveOn.org person being stomped by a Rand Paul Supporter:  Tim Profitt to be exact.

Now, where in the constitution does it say that you have the right to attack someone like this.  She wasn’t being violent – from the video I saw – so it wasn’t like his supporters were stepping up to protect him from a screaming lunatic.  They not only knocked her to the ground, but they stomped on her head.  Well, that’s not true, THEY didn’t stomp on her head, Tim Profitt stomped on her head.

And, now, he is being summoned to court.  But, he gave an interview (as you do) to WKYT. If the video doesn’t appear below, here’s the link.

Apparently, Mr. Profitt doesn’t want his face to appear on camera,  <eye roll>  but he wanted to defend himself – like there is any defense to stomping on the head (and it looks like neck) of a non-violent person.  His first words on the video are:  “She’s a professional.  I think when all the facts come out, I think people’ll see that ah she was the one that ah initiated the whole thing.”

Really?  A lone woman with no backup initiated the incident that caused this angry white man to stomp on her head.

Now, I think I’ve heard it all.

I know everyone is innocent until proven guilty (you know that DOESN’T appear in the Constitution, right?), but really – you’re on video.  He says that he believes she was a threat.  “I put my foot on her and told her to stay down.”  Really?  Where was she going when another Rand Paul supporter was lying on top of her?

And, yet another reason to support concealed carry.

I hope the judge decides that there is a reason to charge this man with assault.

VIEW VIDEO

Video Re-Run – We don’t hire straight while males

In case you missed it.

The Constitution and Gay Marriage

I don’t understand how anyone can claim that gay marriage is against the Constitution.  I really do not understand.  The 14th Amendment clearly states: “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” (emphasis mine)

Whether you like gay people or not.  Whether you agree with gay marriage or not.  The 14th Amendment clearly states that we are to all be treated equally.  The ability to marry in this country isn’t a right, it is a privilege.  Being able to file taxes together, make medical decisions for each other, inherit from each other and make legal decisions for each other is a privilege.  If all couples are not treated equally under the law, then there shouldn’t be legal marriages.  Period.

What makes my brother, Brian’s, marriage to Tara better than my marriage to Cheryl?  Why should they be allowed to file taxes together?  Or, inherit from each other?

Case in point – and something I’ve discussed with my brother – if one of my siblings proceeds our parents in death (God forbid), their heirs (i.e., wife and children) inherit a third of my parents’ estate.  However; if I proceed my parents in death (again, God forbid), Cheryl gets nothing.  Because the state refuses to acknowledge our relationship legally and morally, Cheryl is not considered an heir of my parents.

Is that fair?  Is it just?  Is it right?

No, no and no.

Do my parents consider Cheryl less of a daughter-in-law than Robyn and Tara?

Again, no.

But, legally, there’s nothing to protect her.  Granted, my parents could make a provision in their will, my brothers could split my parents’ estate with her or whatever.  That really is beside the point.  They shouldn’t have to do anything.  She should be my legal heir via a marriage license – just as Robyn and Tara are Scott and Brian’s legal heirs.

Anything less is unconstitutional.

Net Neutrality and the Right Wing

I just received a message from Media Matters regarding the Right Wing and Net Neutrality.  Apparently, Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh suffer from Obama Derangement Syndrome.  They both have a serious case of it, because they are convinced that Net Neutrality is a BAD thing and that is simply not true.

The big communications companies don’t want Net Neutrality.  They want to charge me more in order to have their customers come visit my blog and they want to charge consumers more for reading my blog.  And, my blog is just a sample.  Beck and Limbaugh will be heard because they have big contracts and a lot of money backing them.  People like me will not be heard, because I can’t afford to pay Comcast, AT&T and Verizon more money to obtain readers.  I’m not that dedicated as a blogger to charge for content and I happen to believe that free speech means it should be FREE.

This is one of those few issues where the Christian Coalition and the ACLU actually AGREE.  They both know that if someone decides to put up roadblocks to sites, democracy will be in trouble.

Maybe, you don’t agree with one blog I’ve ever posted.  Maybe, you hate my guts, as I know at least two people out there do.  Maybe, you think I should die a horrible and terrifying death — and, maybe, you’re right.  Maybe, I’m the awful person YOU think I am, but the First Amendment guarantees me the right to free speech.  I pay for the hosting of this website.  I pay for my Internet access.  I shouldn’t have to pay YOUR Internet provider to have my blog come up in search engines or have people visit.

YOU shouldn’t have to pay to have YOUR blog read, either.

That is what Net Neutrality defends against.

Don’t listen to Glenn and Rush on this issue — Contact the FCC and let them know YOU support Net Neutrality.  Read up on it on your own. 

You can start here:  http://free.convio.net/site/Advocacy?pagename=homepage&id=437

God Bless America!

Morality

Yesterday, the public hearing — the one and only public hearing — regarding the anti-gay amendment was held in Madison.

According to an article in this morning’s Journal Sentinel, Jenny Baierl said, “I’m concerned the state is going to determine what is morally acceptable for my child to be taught in sex education and not allow me to be the ultimate authority.”

Excuse me, but who said that allowing gay marriage would take away your ability to determine what is morally acceptable for your children? That isn’t even a logical statement. Drinking is legal in this state and it doesn’t stop me from informing my children about the evils of alcohol. So, if you don’t want your children to support gay marriage, then tell them not to and don’t support it yourself. But, don’t take away my ability to live my life with dignity and in a legal matrimonial state because YOU don’t agree with it.

If you don’t like gay marriage, then don’t have one.

Hate-monger Mark Gundrum said the bill was drafted to address only “legal status” and didn’t get into specific benefits, as laws and amendments in other states have. The intent was to prevent the state only from creating a new kind of marriage recognized in Wisconsin, Gundrum said.

“If a private hospital wants to have a policy allowing visitation for someone, there’s nothing to prohibit that,” he said.

Yeah and there is nothing to prohibit them from barring the life partner of someone gay, either. But they do it.  Such as in the case of “Michael Thomas, a Health and Family Services administrator for Manitowoc County, choked back tears as he talked about his former partner who he said was shot – in front of Thomas – because he was gay; Thomas was kept from him in the hospital. ‘He died alone in a room with me peering through the glass because they wouldn’t let me be with him,” Thomas said. After 20 years with a new partner, he said, “I don’t want the same thing to happen again.’”

So, don’t tell me that an anti-gay amendment somehow protects families and marriages – all it does is harm the gay families that are out there.

Amen, I say to you, if you support this amendment, you are only showing your own fear and hatred of gay people. Period. You aren’t protecting anything, but your own ability to legalize hatred and contempt.

God Bless

The Whole Package

Now, my boss said to me that he believes when you associate yourself with liberals that you have to buy into the whole liberal package. You can’t support the war in Iraq, you don’t support Israel, etc. He has based this belief on watching liberal rallys on C-SPAN and seeing signs in the crowds supporting topics that aren’t even being discussed at the rally.

Well, I’m not going to argue with the boss. That’s just a good way to make enemies in high places. Besides, I have my own blog where I can voice my own opinions.

Maybe, right wingers hold more organized and controlled rallys than liberals. Since I have a very busy life, I don’t spend anytime watching political rallys on C-SPAN. Not that I think it is a bad idea, just not one I have time to participate in. I’m sure that right-wing rallys are more to the point. So, no argument there, but…

I don’t believe that the whole package deal is just on one side of the conservative – liberal aisle. If you are on the conservative side, you are forced into supporting the war in Iraq, the president’s energy policy and tax cuts for the wealthy.
For example, I happen to be a pro-life person, yet, when I try to join pro-life organizations, I seem to find the same thing — no to abortion, yes to death penalty — and a crossover of people who are against gay marriage.

So, what is a liberal conservative suppose to do?

I wish I had a nice and neat answer, but I don’t. I really, really don’t. If you do, I’d like to hear it — write to me.
God Bless,

Newer posts

© 2020 Top Of My Head

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑