Steve Jobs changed how the world thinks and interacts. In many ways he brought us closer to our humanity. We will be forever in his debt.
We miss you.
We miss you.
A New York City taxi medallion is a tin plate that grants a person the right to operate a yellow cab. On Wednesday, two medallions were sold for $1 million each, the highest price ever. In 1937 when the first medallion was issued, it went for $10. New York City has sold 13,237 medallions over the years. The new ones, when issued, are sold at auction. What this means is that the largest fleets, which often control hundreds of medallions, can easily secure financing. Medallion sales are one of the city's big businesses. In fact, the biggest lender, Medallion Financial, is a publicly traded company and shares a Madison Avenue skyscraper with the Rockefeller Family Fund.This folks is a shining example of what OWS is about.
One of those legacies is the Defense Department's separation pay policy for discharged service members. If you serve six years in the military and are then discharged involuntarily, Congress says you're entitled to separation pay to help ease your transition to civilian life. But the DOD has an internal policy — not required by any statute — of cutting that separation pay in half if you're discharged, even honorably, for "homosexuality."
Let's be clear: Many of those who were discharged under DADT were distinguished soldiers, airmen or cadets and had an unblemished record. They were service members in good standing, and there was nothing dishonorable about their discharge. Yet they are denied the same separation pay as other honorably discharged service members merely because they're gay or lesbian.
That's what happened to our lead client in our class action lawsuit challenging this needless policy. Richard Collins was a decorated Air Force Staff Sergeant who served nine years before being kicked out under DADT. He was seen kissing his civilian boyfriend, in a car at a stoplight, when he was off duty, out of uniform, and 10 miles off base. After being discharged under DADT, Staff Sgt. Collins discovered that his separation pay was cut in half.
We filed this lawsuit on behalf of Collins and 142 other service members about a year ago. We expected at the time that, once Congress passed the statute authorizing repeal of DADT, the government would quickly settle the case and give these honorably discharged service members the separation pay they are entitled to. Instead, the government has inexplicably dragged its feet every step of the way.
In May, the government asked the court to dismiss the case, without even defending the constitutionality of the policy. Instead the government argued that the courts could not provide any relief to service members whose separation pay was cut in half while DADT was still in effect. It didn't make sense to us, and apparently, it didn't make any sense to the court. Today, Judge Christine O.C. Miller of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims denied the government's request and will allow these veterans to be heard.
The court's decision means that these 142 service members will finally have their day in court. The government will have to explain to them and to the rest of the public how cutting their pay in half served important governmental interests. The government will have to make that explanation, even though the Pentagon has already issued a detailed report making clear that discrimination against gay and lesbian service members is entirely unnecessary and doesn't serve the interests of the military. Good luck with that.
In a Tuesday letter to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., urged the Department of Defense "in the strongest terms to end a discriminatory policy that bans the same-sex spouses of returning National Guard members from participating in official National Guard family events."
Shaheen's letter followed a story in Monday's Herald about Rye resident Charlie Morgan, who is the only member of the N.H. National Guard who recently returned from a foreign deployment but is barred from bringing a spouse to a military-mandated "yellow ribbon reintegration" program this weekend. While the National Guard states returning soldiers' "family members are strongly encouraged to attend" the two-day event, Morgan is the exception because she's a lesbian.
Shaheen said she attempted to assist Morgan, but has been "hamstrung by federal regulations." On Tuesday, the senator wrote to Panetta, asking him "to get personally involved."
“During a Spiritual Warfare conference at Rick Joyner’s MorningStar Ministries, Pastor Ryan Wyatt of Abiding Glory Church preached on “Governmental Dominion.” Wyatt explained that Jesus is not going to come back until God sees that there is a “mature, overcoming bride” is “operating at the same level” as Jesus, at which point Christ will return and Christians “will work with Jesus to rule and reign.” Later, Wyatt said that “we are to rule, reign, govern, expand, advance and establish the government of God on the earth” since “this is about world domination.” He called on followers to “infiltrate” the seven mountains of influence, especially the government mountain, to attain “preparatory dominion.”
While some parents may initially find this solution uncomfortable or difficult, my question is this: How much worse does it have to get before you intervene? If a speeding car was on a collision course with your child, wouldn’t you do all you could to rush to rescue your child? And what if you found out someone was planning to sexually molest your child? Nothing could stop you from rescuing your boy or girl. Think about it. If we are so concerned about the physical safety of children, why wouldn’t we also protect their mental, emotional, and spiritual safety? Realize that the raft of school sexual indoctrination mandates imposed on all children in California government schools amounts to mental molestation.Labels: education, hate groups, LGBT History, Save CaliforniaThanks Joe for the head shaking in disbelief.
Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA), the ranking member on the House Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee, is requesting a hearing on House Speaker’s John Boehner’s (R-OH) “irresponsible, backdoor use of taxpayer money to pay the private law firm Bancroft PLLC to represent the House in support of the constitutionally-questionable Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA),” he announced in a press release. The legal team that Boehner and the Republicans hired has come under harsh criticism for arguing that homosexuality is a choice, misrepresenting research, and relying on such experts as ex-gay advocate George Rekers and the National Organization for Marriage’s Maggie Gallagher. House Democrats are also calling on Boehner to hold a a briefing on his efforts, which are have cost taxpayers more than a million dollars.
A lot of boomers have become insufferably smug and complacent.
The Propagandist is an in-depth investigative piece about Fischer's history in Idaho written for the Southern Poverty Law Center by Idaho journalists Jody May-Chang and Jill Kuraitis, both of whom have closely followed Fischer's activities for many years. The article is included in a 23-page report issued by the SPLC Oct. 10, 2011.Hear the full report.
A Jackson County grand jury on Oct. 6 secretly indicted both Finn and the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph on misdemeanor charges of failure to report child abuse in a case involving a priest facing child pornography charges. As Finn and the diocese denied wrongdoing Friday after appearing in court, news of the charges roiled the nation and the Catholic world.The charges were announced Friday at a news conference by Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker. "This is a significant charge," Baker said. "To my knowledge, a charge like this has not been leveled before."Finn as a member of the clergy and the diocese as the operator of schools are required under Missouri law to report reasonable suspicions of child abuse. But they did not do that for five months in the case of the Rev. Shawn Ratigan, the indictment alleges. In a statement, the diocese said its lawyers entered a plea of not guilty for the diocese.
Today was the deadline for signatures to qualify a new referendum for inclusion on the November 2012 ballot.
As EQCA announced yesterday, the anti-equality advocates were unable to get the specified number of signatures to get their discriminatory policies back in the hands of the voters.
They were seeking a referendum to overturn the recent FAIR Education Act (SB48), which ensures classrooms are including LGBT, minority and handicapped individuals in the teaching of history.
At many public locations where the group attempted to gather signatures, it was reported they were misleading the public about what the law was about, even linking it in some cases to pedophilia.
After a last minute rally in an attempt to uncover or gather more signatures, today the group sent out an email to all their supporters, entitled, "We Fought the Law and the Law Won."
In the email, they shared their disappointment with losing their attempt at overturning the "very bad law" and thanked their supporters.
They also offered guidance on what to expect of their referndum's "opponents," avowed to not give up the fight for the sake of the children and identified the state politicians that stood with them in the attempt to overturn the FAIR Education Act.
The communication also gives insight into to their discriminatory tactics, from the school board level, up.
Unfortunately we did not collect enough signatures to qualify the referendum to overturn SB48. That law will be in place in our schools at the first of next year.
We thank all of you that worked so hard to provide the hundreds of thousands of signatures received. In the end, 90 days was too short a time to accomplish such a large task.
In the coming days you will see the celebration of our opponents. We know this because it has already started in social media and other places. And some of the rhetoric will be harsh. Remember, despite what they say about us, we opposed SB 48 simply because we do not believe that children should be exposed to an intentionally one-sided argument about lifestyles and values we do not hold.
And you will have to face some of those who said from the beginning that our referendum effort was a waste of time. They said we did not have enough money, the commitment of enough groups, or enough days. Ultimately they were right. And in private perhaps they will ask if the effort they withheld would have made the critical difference.
In the end, everybody that dedicated time and effort to qualifying this referendum should hold their heads high. The children in California schools and their parents owe a debt of gratitude to each of you for attempting such a huge task.
We hope that you will be there for the next battle.
While we did not overturn this very bad law, we built a small army of dedicated volunteers that collected an incredible amount of signatures. There will be a next battle. Despite the overuse of the term "tolerance," there is little tolerance for those who do not endorse the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender lifestyles. And there will be more laws passed that advocate for these and attempt to silence any opposition.
If the moral and financial costs weren’t enough to end the war, public opinion has turned against it, and its strategic importance has long been in question.I thought of how we’ve chosen and continue to choose war over all of these things. I shook my head and answered, “I don’t know, son. I just don’t know. But I hope that soon we won’t be fighting in Afghanistan anymore.”
Tomorrow, the cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will be more than $1.259 trillion.
Tomorrow, almost 14 million Americans will still be unemployed.
Tomorrow, the homes of more than 2,500 new U.S. families will enter foreclosure.
Tomorrow, one in seven U.S. households still won’t know where their next meal is coming from.
Tomorrow, one in four American children under the age of six will still be living below the poverty line.
Tomorrow, three billion people around the globe will still be living on less than $2.50 a day.
Tomorrow, 400 million children will still lack access to clean water.
Tomorrow, 300 children under the age of five will die in the Horn of Africa because of famine.
People are feeling crushed from all sides.
Parents who aren’t sure where their kid’s next meal will come from, and the college students who have tens of thousands of dollars in loans and can’t find a job.
Families that have lost their homes in bank foreclosures, and the tens of millions of people who live below the poverty line even though they HAVE jobs.
"The News is Not Good ... it is doubtful we will get the number of signatures we need to qualify. Unfortunately the last several deliveries of mail have not been what was expected and a large number of petitions have been pulled out because of errors. From all appearances, we would need a miracle to qualify this referendum."We chortle in our joy. We chortle the fuck outta this.
But my main disagreement with Mitt is this, and this is what I told every member of the media who interviewed me: my problem with Mitt is not that he’s Mormon, it’s that he’s not Mormon enough. In fact, that is all I’ve ever said about Romney’s Mormon faith.In saying this, Fischer actually helps our cause, highlighting a major problem with how LGBT matters are commonly treated. Here we have a man whose organization, the American Family Association, co-hosted this silly Values Voters Summit. A man who got to speak right after someone who could become our next President. A man who used that plum speaking gig to give one of the most insanely hostile speeches imaginable, complete with a call for the next President to declare homosexuality a public health hazard. A man whose extremism (along with that of Pastor Robert Jeffress) led said candidate to publicly renounce him. And yet still, most every single report I'm seeing is making this current war-within all about whether or not figures like Jeffress and Fischer consider Mormonism to be a "cult" and not about what Fischer himself is flat-out saying is the real issue. Adding insult to injury, I'm still seeing far to many people paint Fischer as nothing more than a mere conservative voice, which is just plain negligent at this point. All leading to the major question here, which is: Why do LGBT issues get so much focus in some ways yet so much of a pass in another?!
The Mormon church has always been strongly pro-marriage, yet Gov. Romney imposed same-sex marriage on Massachusetts and the United States by executive fiat in 2004.
The sanctity of life and the sanctity of marriage are the two absolute non-negotiables. That Mitt suddenly discovered these values at the same time he decided he wanted to be the next Republican presidential candidates smacks of a political conversion that is more about convenience than conviction.
In fact, I think the main reason Mitt Romney tried to kneecap me on Saturday is that I have been unswerving in pointing out he imposed same-sex marriage on Massachusetts by executive fiat.
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled in the fall of 2003 that the state’s existing natural marriage law - which outlawed same-sex marriage - was unconstitutional. The court, in a nod to the separation of powers, urged the General Assembly to write a new law, since that’s not the role of the judiciary, and gave it 180 days.
The General Assembly did precisely nothing. In fact, same-sex marriage is still illegal in Massachusetts. It is against the law, because the law has never been changed. You could look it up.
But Gov. Romney, in his craven capitulation to homosexual activists, was not about to be deterred. He plunged ahead and “legalized” same-sex marriage in a burst of executive activism and tyranny.
He ordered town clerks in the spring of 2004 to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples or get fired. Massachusetts state law still to this day directs town clerks to only issue marriage licenses that are “authorized by the laws of the commonwealth.” So Romney was ordering them to break the state law or lose their jobs, a gross abuse of power.
There’s a rule in politics: you never punch down; you only punch up. You never attack someone who has less power than you. Yet Mitt Romney came after me, someone with a minor national profile and no political power whatsoever.
Why did he punch down by going after me? Because I’m saying something he does not want Republican voters to know: America has same-sex marriage because of Mitt Romney.
In other words, his attack on me wasn’t about Mormonism at all. It was about same-sex marriage and his shameful role in foisting it on America.Bryan Fischer: Mitt Romney publicly attacks me. Why? It's not about Mormonism [AFA]
Speaking of “decency and civility,” the American Family Association is one of the hosts of this event. How “decent and civil” is it to insult one of your hosts in front of the entire nation from the platform they have made available to you? Hmmm?Bryan Fischer: Mitt Romney publicly attacks me. Why? It's not about Mormonism [AFA]So there is no debate here. Fischer says his Romney fight is all about same-sex marriage, he takes responsibility for getting Romney to the summit in the first place, and he thinks the candidate was wrong to "insult" him in the way that he did. There's the story, which is inextricably connected to the Family Research Council, the Romney campaign, the crowd that gave Fischer a standing ovation, and the marriage fight in this country. We must demand it get reported in this way!