Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Prince Harry…A Royal Pain In the Ass

Prince Harry was in Las Vegas recently and he dressed down for the occasion. Unfortunately, he wasn’t alone or out of eye shot of cameras, because naked photos of him are now all over the internet. He blames an alcohol filled party. No doubt something was to blame for his poor judgment. Now, he is going to have to pay for his mistakes for a long time to come.

One punishment, for the third in line for the throne, is NO MORE Facebook. He has had to delete his account. Of course the account wasn’t under his real name, it was under the name Spike Wells, but it’s very hard to keep that a secret when you are a prince. Harry is only 27 and Judge Judy would probably say he is not “fully cooked,” as men take longer to mature than women. The other consequence is that his long term girlfriend dumped him. I’m sure Prince Charles and the Queen Mother had plenty to say to him too. I guess you might say they were “royally pissed.”

Harry’s security team is also at fault. It appears that when Harry and his friends were about to entertain a group of women, the women were not told to surrender their phones. That enabled them to take several pictures throughout the festivities. One has to wonder if the security team was also drunk?

Now there is a threat that even more embarrassing photos of Harry are due to come out, even worse than the previous set. There is word of a bigger breaking scandal in the works. Maybe, whoever has the story, is waiting to be paid off by the Royal family? Otherwise, why would they be holding on to it? The talk is that two casinos allegedly waived Harry’s $80,000 bill, which they deny. How all this ties together remains to be seen. Maybe Harry’s partying days are now over?

What does this all prove? Well what happens in Vegas, doesn’t necessarily stay in Vegas! Stay Tuned!

Friday, August 24, 2012

My Rabbit, Yoyo...

When I was a kid, many, many years ago, I was desperate for a pet of any kind. I always blogged about how I got my toy fox terrier, Caesar, thanks to my cousin Paul and his smart-ass remark. Well, thanks to Paul, I also got my pet rabbit. One year, my aunt Mary got her kids a bunny for Easter. That opened the door for me to ask for one. My mother broke down and took us to buy one. He was a golden tan color. I guess she was okay with it because he would be kept in the yard. My father built him a nice big cage and used the mesh from old screens for the sides. We named the bunny Yoyo, because he like to jump up and down.

Yoyo loved to eat. My mother bought rabbit food all the time and gave him left over vegetables or extras she had home. He got big and fat pretty fast. But, in spite of all the food we gave him, Yoyo wasn’t quite content. He learned how to make a hole in the screen of the cage and get out. My father tried to repair the hole, but Yoyo was always one escape ahead of him. When Yoyo got out, which was usually at 5 am in the mornings, he would never eat all the vegetables growing in my father’s garden. No. Instead, he went over to the neighbor’s garden and helped himself to their grand smorgasbord. This would them prompt the neighbor to call my house at 5 am and complain about the rabbit in their yard. Either me or my brother would have to get out of bed and go get Yoyo. The yard next door had a three or four foot drop on the other side of the fence, so we couldn’t figure out how Yoyo always managed to land there, especially when there was a beautiful vegetable garden a few feet away from his cage. I’m not sure how many times this happened, but there came a time when it was once too many.

WARNING: The rest of the story may be too harsh for animal lovers!

I always spent all or part of the summers at my cousin’s house. One day the phone rings and it’s my brother. He has some bad news to tell me. Mind you I just got off the phone speaking to my mother and she never mentioned a word of what she did. My brother proceeds to tell me that my mother put Yoyo in the shopping cart and took him to the butcher. She sold Yoyo to him for $5.00. The butcher asked her if she had any more like him. My mother said no. And she came home with an empty shopping cart. I was horrified to say the least. It was all after the fact and there was nothing I could do. Poor Yoyo, his life cut tragically short because he liked to roam and eat and because my mother detested getting up at 5am in the morning. I felt betrayed because she decided to do this without saying anything or looking for a more humane solution to the problem. On top of that, she seized the moment I was away, to plan Yoyo’s demise and she had no remorse. All she had to say was the $5.00 didn’t begin to cover all the money she had spent to feed him. 

I never understood how she could do such a thing. 

Monday, August 20, 2012

Todd Akin and “Legitimate Rape”

I was trying very hard to avoid any discussion of politics or politicians for a while. I find the whole topic very draining. However, this story was brought to my attention and I found it impossible to ignore. The Republican Senate nominee in Missouri is stirring up a bit of controversy that no one can put a good spin on. Representative Akin is against all abortions, even in cases of rape and incest. Why? It is his belief that in cases of “legitimate rape” a woman’s body automatically blocks unwanted pregnancy from occurring. And Akin has done his research. He has asked doctors who have confirm that pregnancy rarely occurs from rape. It seems we have gone back to prehistoric times once again. What happened to the old warning given to teenagers by Ann Landers…it only takes having intercourse one time to conceive? I thought everyone knew that. However, this 65 year old, six term member of Congress must have missed the news flash.

Let me just post his exact words here so there is no room for misinterpretation: “It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Mr. Akin said of pregnancies from rape. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.”

I’m sure that he has pretty much ended his career with his comments. I can’t imagine any person adhering to these beliefs. If I hadn’t read about the incident myself, I might not have believed it. But, here it is in black and white. And then, realizing what he had done, Mr. Akin tried to do damage control and explain away his statement, He misspoke. He has compassion for rape victims. All the while sticking to his position that all life must be protected regardless of how is was conceived. Romney and Ryan were quick to disassociate themselves from Akin, while he was going down in flames. In fact no one has come to his defense. The comments are political suicide.

I really find this appalling and yet there is more. Here is what else he believes: “He also looks to be the first legislator to make the argument that rape prevents pregnancy,  arguing in the late 1980s that the odds of a pregnancy resulting from rape were “one in millions and millions and millions.” His explanation? The trauma of rape causes women to “secrete a certain secretion which has the tendency to kill sperm.”

It is scary that is this day and age, with so much information available, that people who are running for office are this ignorant of the facts. You would think that someone close to him would have educated him as to the reproductive process so he would know his argument doesn’t hold water. The sad thing is, he isn’t the only one to hold these views in spite of scientific evidence to the contrary.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Paul Ryan’s Anti-Women Platform…

Romney sticks it to the working class; Ryan sticks it to women!
What a joke!

As if Mitt Romney hasn’t done enough to prove he represents just the wealthy, at the expense of the lower-income and middle class population, he picks Paul Ryan as his running mate. Paul Ryan is a man who, if he had his way, would set women back to the Stone Age. I have tried not to read any of the things he stands for, but there is always someone or something bringing politics to my attention. Now I have to say something.

I came across the list below of Paul Ryan’s stand on women rights. I feel like I took a ride in a time machine, back to the Dark Ages. Susan B. Anthony must be on a perpetual roll in her grave. I can’t even wrap my mind around this kind of thinking. The list speaks for itself, I really don’t need to add more, but I will.

Paul Ryan doesn’t believe that women should get equal pay for equal work.Really? I’d like to meet the woman who agrees with that. Are there actually conservative women who are okay with this position? Is this okay for your daughters and granddaughters to make less money than a man? It’s not okay with me. I have two daughters. One day they may have daughters. I would like them to be treated fairly and equally in the workforce. I don’t like it that their salary might be based on gender and not the job or job performance. Of course Paul Ryan has two sons so maybe it’s fine with him, they won’t be affected.

Paul Ryan is against abortion, even in cases of rape and incest. I am against abortion too. I think it’s being used way too often, in pregnancies that could be avoided in the first place. It was not meant to be a form of birth control. I don’t want to debate the whole abortion issue, however I am upset at how radial his stand is on this issue. In cases of rape and incest, I have always felt that abortion should be an option. The reasons are obvious and don’t need to be stated. No woman should have to have a baby that was created in an act of brutality. Imagine Paul Ryan telling you that your daughter would not be able to terminate a pregnancy resulting from rape or incest? How can anyone agree with that? Of course, Paul Ryan has two sons, so he is not concerned with our daughters.

If Paul Ryan has his way, he would eliminate Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood has been around almost 100 years and provides health care services for women such as: preventing unwanted pregnancy, pap tests, breast exams, treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, and yes 3% of their services involve abortions. Without their vital services many women, men and teens would have no where to turn. Is this really necessary and has he thought out the consequences of such a policy?

Paul Ryan does want insurance companies to pay for birth control and wants to make some forms of it illegal. Again, we have the argument that birth control is used to treat other women’s health issues, not just prevent pregnancy. And why wouldn’t you want to prevent pregnancy? Isn’t preventing a pregnancy a better option than an abortion? Do we really want to bring children into this world who are unwanted or cannot be provided for? I just don’t get it. The fact is that when a woman or teen gets pregnant, many times the father takes off and leaves the raising of the child to the mother. She is lucky if she can get child support. And then, often times, she may need public assistance. How many more of these situations will we have without birth control as an option? It would cause many women to drop out of school, or be unable to work. Wouldn’t this be more of a drain on society? But, Paul Ryan has sons, so maybe he isn’t concerned about unwanted pregnancies.

And finally, Paul Ryan would outlaw in vitro fertilization. Here we have a man who is pro-life and against birth control and abortion, seeking to prevent wanted pregnancy too. He is heartless enough to want to deny women and couples with fertility problems, the right to have a baby through in vitro fertilization. Paul Ryan was never a woman who longed to have a baby. He doesn’t know how that feels. He has two children of his own, so what does he care of the next couple can’t have children? I wonder if his wife hadn’t been able to have children, if he would be taking this position? As a mother of daughters, I am glad that science has progressed to the point that if they have problems conceiving, there are alternative options available. How dare he take away a woman’s chance of having her own baby?

Is this what conservatives mean when they say they want government out of their business? They want less government interference in our lives, unless it‘s for telling women what they can and cannot do? What’s next? Will Paul Ryan suggest we revoke a women’s right to vote?

As or Mitt Romney, this is his first major decision as "would be President." As far as I am concerned he failed.  He didn’t choose someone who I have trust and confidence in. Paul Ryan is clearly against women’s rights and equality. If these are the things Paul Ryan freely admits to standing behind, what more does he have in mind that we aren’t aware of? I shutter to think about it. If you have daughters, you should too.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Mitt Romney’s 13% Tax Rate…


Mitt Romney’s 13% Tax Rate…

I wish I could avoid hearing anything on the news, because everything I hear is aggravating. This morning, for example, I heard that Mitt Romney, who earned 42.5 million dollars is paying 13% in taxes. He also won’t release previous tax returns, beyond the last two years, because some speculate he paid no taxes at all. It wouldn’t surprise me that someone whose net worth is about 250 million dollars and who made 42.5 million isn’t paying their fair share of taxes, while others, who make a pittance of that amount, pay far more.

Let’s take my older daughter for example. She graduated college three years ago. Fortunately for her, she earned a full scholarship and has no loans to pay back, so all the money she earns is hers to keep…except for taxes. After working three years, she still cannot afford to move out on her own. Why? On her meager salary she pays 25% in taxes. Yes, a single person earning $35,350 or more must pay 25% in taxes. Imagine if she had loans to pay? She would be working for taxes and loans forever. Unless, of course I had $20,000 sitting around to lend her for a business. What sense does this make? How can people ever get out of debt when the rich people don’t pay their fair share?

Check out your bracket, are you paying more than Romney?

Yesterday I read that Romney wants to cut out Pell Grants for Students in order to DECREASE taxes for the rich. In Nebraska, 75 students would lose their grants to pay for one millionaire’s tax cut of $265,000. Pell grants are a maximum of $5,000 per low-income student. It’s based on financial need. It’s to help students and parents who can’t afford tuition costs, so they can get an education and be contributing members of society. So what is the logic in taking away from so many who can ill afford it, to make the rich richer? Now I understand why President Obama called it Romneyhood!

On top of that, the minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. There is a bill proposed to raise it to $10 an hour. Guess what? Romney sees no need to raise the minimum wage at this time. If not now, when? Romney and his people suggest that they want students to work their way through college and, at the same time, they fight an increase in the minimum wage that would help them do so? And then take away the grants they receive too. How are students supposed to get a college education and be productive citizens when everything is working against them? Even if they manage to graduate, they have loans to pay which may last as long as 30 year mortgages because they are being taxed at a rate of 25%.

Meanwhile, Romney doesn’t want to show us his previous tax returns. Where is all the hoopla demanding he present them like there was for Obama’s birth certificate?  Is he waiting for after the election to show us how little he paid? It might hurt his chances if people were to learn he paid even less than 13% for other years, don’t you think? 

I think this is all appalling. With high unemployment, loans, high tax rates, and low minimum wage, parents will have to take care of and support their adult children for a long time. But don’t worry, at this “rate,” the Romney children will be doing just fine.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Juan Reyes, the Irish-Italian American Republican…

Juan Reyes, the Irish-Italian American Republican…

…with the Spanish last name. Who is Juan Reyes? He came to my house and spoke to my husband. He is running for New York State Senate on the Republican ticket and is trying to get voter support. He is also a lawyer. He is part Italian, he is part Irish and he says, he has a Spanish name. I will post his site at the end so you can see for yourself. I'm not kidding.

When my husband was telling me about Juan, I raised my eyebrows and my voice. What do you mean the Irish-Italian guy with the Spanish name? What happened to the part of the family where he got his first and last names? Is he saying he is not Hispanic/Spanish? Is he saying that his Irish-Italian family gave him a Spanish name for the fun of it? Is he denying his part of his heritage? It sure sounds like that to me. My daughter jokingly said, does he really think he is pulling the wool over our eyes? 

In his flyer, Juan has some old pictures of his Irish and Italian ancestors. Juan is proud to say all his ancestors were "legal immigrants." He makes it clear that his wife, Meaghan O’Reilly-Reyes is also Irish. That's just great! I am still stunned. I have never seen a candidate make such an issue about part of his heritage while appearing to deny a huge chunk of it at the same time. His name would indicate that, at the very least, some Spanish/Hispanic DNA is in his gene pool. 

I’m not sure I would vote for a candidate who is lying by omission about his own Hispanic nationality. Or seems to be sweeping it under the rug. Or acts like it’s not important enough to mention. How will we know who he really is and what he stands for when he is blatantly is in denial over a very basic fact, he is also part Hispanic. 

You know what? Juan seems to be very likable. He has some impressive credentials and experience. He appears to be a highly educated, family man, who lives and works in our community. Why didn’t he try to focus on those things? Instead he made it all about his name and DNA.

I’m not sure this was the best political strategy for him to use. He didn’t win me over with it. He seems like a nice enough guy, but he sure is starting off on the wrong "el pie" (foot). Don’t you think? 

Monday, August 13, 2012

Mitt Romney’s Advice to College Grads in Ohio…

Just borrow from your parents!

Can’t find a job? Take risks! Start a business. Borrow $20,000 from your parents, like his friend Jimmy John. This is the “American experience.” He is way out of touch with the majority of Americans today if he thinks most parents have thousands of dollars sitting around to hand over to their kids after helping them get through college. Even if they haven’t helped with college, many parents are up to their eyeballs in their own debt: mortgages, credit cards, home improvement loans, car loans…

Of course Mitt Romney is rich and his parents are rich. That’s why he can afford to make jokes about unemployment and he isn’t worried about the poor. That’s why he thinks nothing of suggesting that students run to their parents for thousands of dollars to start a business, when they are probably already shouldering thousands of dollars in college loan debt. Romney is rich and has no clue how the middle class lives. A four year college education at a private school can easily cost $150,000, which is just pocket change to Romney, whose net worth is estimated to be about $250 million dollars. To hard working people and their children, it’s a burdening debt that is almost impossible to pay back, especially in these times with high unemployment. 

Is it that hard to get a fix on how most people in this country are living today? Romney doesn’t even have to do the research himself. He has a staff who can do polls, look online, check unemployment statistics, look up college tuition costs, the amount of money people are taking on various loans, etc…the information is out there and the money is not. 

How is Romney supposed to represent the majority when he relates only to the rich minority? 

Hey, anybody out there got a few thousand dollars to lend to your children to start a business since they can’t get jobs after paying $150,000 for their education? Somehow I don’t think there are many parents who can.

And, college grads, if take Romney's advice and go to your parents to ask for money, tell them Mitt Romney sent you.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

“Nunsense” From The Vatican…

Well, well, well…some new and unbelievable “nunsense” from the Vatican. I could hardly believe this myself, but it’s true.  The Vatican did a three year investigation and determined and are questioning the loyalty of US Catholic nuns to the teachings of the Church. Yes, I said nuns. The ladies that give up their entire lives to serve God and the Church. What’s the problem? The nuns aren't doing their part to speak up against gay marriage, abortion and contraception. And, the Vatican has also decided that this is because they are “radical feminists.”

Catholics seem to be supporting the 57,000 nuns in the US and are raising money for their cause. They are tired of the priests trying to silence the voice of women. Are we living in the Middle Ages? And what or WHO is behind this investigation in the first place?

“The Vatican’s initiative was triggered by U.S. Archbishop William E. Lori's petition to investigate the nuns, according to the National Catholic Reporter and the British Catholic weekly The Tablet. Lori was recently appointed by the pope to lead the Archdiocese of Baltimore.”

“According to those same reports, Cardinal Bernard F. Law -- disgraced former archbishop of Boston -- was "the person in Rome most forcefully supporting Bishop Lori’s proposal." After media reports revealed he had permitted priests accused of sexually molesting children to continue serving, Law resigned in 2002. Pope John Paul II appointed Law as archpriest of the Papal Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome in 2004, but he resigned from this position in November 2011 when he turned 80, the age most cardinals retire.”

It’s not like the nuns aren’t doing anything. They have been busy working with the poor and sick. They are actually helping people and living in the communities and among the very people who need them and depend on them. These are the people the Vatican wants to investigate and crack down on? One nun had this to say, “It simply made sense to try to alleviate the suffering of the poor, to end wars, to overcome discrimination," she said. "That, for me, was Christianity.” Apparently, that’s not enough.

In their defense, the President of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious,
Sister Pat Farrell, has said, “the conference has not endorsed any position that is contrary to Catholic teachings. She said it has encouraged church leaders and lay Catholics to raise questions openly and search for truth freely.”

Just another issue I now have with the Catholic Church! I have posted a video below from The Daily Show, about this very issue. If it doesn’t already sound ridiculous. based on what I wrote, the little skit below should.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

“Romney Hood?”

Every great once in a while, politics makes me laugh. Today I was listening to the radio and heard part of President Obama’s speech for a fund raiser in Stamford, CT. President Obama coined the phrase “Romney Hood,” as he explained how Romney’s tax plan was actually the reverse of the children’s story Robin Hood. Robin Hood stole from the rich to give to the poor. President Obama says that Romney’s proposed tax plan would increase taxes for the middle class and/or lower income tax payers while giving tax cuts to the rich. Effectively, if true, he would be taking from the “poor” to give to the rich. It’s very clever and funny, except if it‘s true.

Actually, there was a study done by nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, which determined this to be true. However, who really knows. Romney isn’t even sure of his own plan yet. Romney wants to decrease the deficit without raising taxes, but hasn’t filled us in on the details of how he plans to accomplish this. Yet, he says the study is flawed and biased. How do we know what to believe when I have heard him joke about unemployment and say he isn’t worried about the poor?

Here’s what Obama quoted the study as saying: Obama cited a Tax Policy Center study, saying Romney would “effectively raise taxes on middle-class families with children by an average of $2,000 -- to pay for this tax cut.  Not to reduce the deficit. ... He’d ask the middle class to pay more in taxes so that he could give another $250,000 tax cut to people making more than $3 million a year.”

Is what this study says true? It was done by a nonpartisan group. Doesn’t that mean anything? I don’t know about you, but I would love it if we could get the real truth about what is going on on both sides of the political aisle. It’s time for the media to go back to doing real investigative reporting and stick to facts in all articles that aren’t editorials . There is no room for bias in journalism. When the hell did everything change? When did the news become so slanted? Walter Cronkite must be rolling over in his grave.

Regardless of all that, I love the phrase “Romney Hood.” Stick an arrow in me, I’m done.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Our 1964 Dodge Dart…

My parents were married in 1952 and didn’t get a car until the very late 60’s or early 70’s. I don’t remember any more, but I do remember the 1964 Dodge Dart. It was was a used car and we went a long way around the bush to get it.

My mother wanted my father to get his driver’s license. She nagged him about it and he always refused. When she felt she was never going to get anywhere with him, she decided to use psychology. If he wasn’t going to get a driver’s license, she would. So she studied and passed the test for the permit without a problem and started taking lessons from a driving school. My father seemed disinterested in the whole thing. 

My mother took her first road test and failed it. My father got some satisfaction out of that because she also failed to show him up. My mother became more determined to pass the road test the second time, but she failed again. I knew that made my father secretly happy because my mother’s plan to show him up was backfiring. My mother took more lessons and went back to take the road test a third time. This time she failed yet again. And, if you’ve read my blog on my mother playing checkers and Rummy 500 with my father, you might remember that my mother is a sore loser. So now my mother vowed she was done with driving! That is when my father decides he is going to learn to drive!

Now my father wants to show my mother up, but he has a big obstacle, he can’t read English and the test isn’t given in Italian. My mother hires an Italian woman who teaches Italians how to pass the written test for the permit. I watched her teach my father how to look for certain words in the questions and then pick out the right answer. I am still amazed at that system, mostly because it worked. My father passed the test for the permit on the first try. He then went to get his own driving instructor, one that a friend of his used. My father passed the road test on the first try. He was elated because he had shown my mother how easy it was for him and it reminded her again of how miserably she failed. However, my mother’s original goal was not for her to learn to drive, but for my father to get his license, so in that respect she really won.

Now to pick out a car. They didn’t want to get a new car to park on the street, so they went to a couple of used car lots and ended up picking out our first car, a 1964 Dodge Dart. We had that car for a few years too because we never took long trips. My father, who used to take public transportation to work, now planned to use the car. He worked in different places all the time because he was in construction. And while he knew his way around the city with buses and trains, he was unfamiliar with the roads. So he used me as his “mapquest.” He would give me an address and I would locate it on the map and tell him how to get there. If he was unsure of the route, we would drive there together and I would tell him where to turn. He always learned how to get there on one try. The car ended up making his life a lot easier. In fact, all our lives were made easier because we would be able to visit our relatives without long waits in the heat and cold waiting for buses. My father even came to pick me up at college so many times. when he wasn’t able to work in bad weather. Those were the times I really needed a ride too because I was taking three buses back and forth from home.  

Several years later, the old Dodge Dart just couldn’t go on. It needed major repairs and my parents decided to get another used car…another Dodge Dart. That second car also served us well for many years. Then came the end of the cars for our family.

My mother’s sister, Mary died in 1990. She left her money to my mother, her last remaining living sibling. My father wanted to use some of that money for a new car. My mother went out looking at cars with him. They could not decide on which car to get. She hated what he picked out and he didn’t want anything to do with the car she picked out. It was a stalemate! I don’t know if they stopped making Dodge Darts by then either. But, for a while there was a lot of arguing and neither of them would back down. My father was retired, so he didn’t care about owning a car any more. All my mother’s siblings had died so there was no one left to visit and besides, my husband and I had two cars to take them places if they needed to go. She wasn’t that concerned about having a car either. The end result was that they never got another car. 

It didn’t inconvenience them much at all. They really did all their business in the neighborhood and were not afraid to walk long distances to get where they needed to go. An occasional car service trip was certainly a lot less money than owning a car. Everything seemed to worked out for the best. 

I really loved those Dodge Darts. When it was time to get rid of them I shed a few tears. I don’t know how we can get attached to material objects like that. There were many family memories made in those two cars and many laughs had.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Chick-fil-A Helps Support “Kill The Gays” Bill

Maybe you have already heard this before, or like me are just learning of it now, but Chick-fil-A has a foundation called, Winshape. I think everyone should be aware of what Chick-fil-A does with it's billions of dollars. Winshape donates money to causes, one of them being Exodus International, whose mission is to liberate the world from homosexuality.

In 2009, Exodus sent three men to preach about the dangers of homosexuality to Uganda. In addition to explaining to them how homosexuals can be converted to heterosexuals, they also told them how they posed a threat to values expressed in the Bible. But, they didn’t stop there with their agenda. They went on to convey that homosexuals are evil and sodomize teenage boys. That they will eventually turn a marriage based society into one of sexual promiscuity. And a month after their visit, a bill was passed in Uganda called, the Anti-Homosexuality Bill of 2009 aka “Kill the Gays” Bill, which was designed punish homosexuality through death by hanging.

Since when is it a crime for being born different?

The men from Exodus claimed to be surprised to learn that their hateful rhetoric inspired a bill that imposed the death penalty on homosexuals. But maybe they should have thought of that before using words that inspired hate? How does one claim to represent God and then promote hate anyway? I am still working on wrapping my mind around that idea.

What do you think God would say about this? Did God intend for people to use the Bible to spread hate, to demean and degrade people, to violate their rights, to make the lives of gay people worth less than other lives? The result of Exodus’ meeting in Uganda has Uganda’s minister of ethics and integrity saying, “Homosexuals can forget about human rights.” However, the harsh stand that Uganda has taken has softened a bit due to pressure from foreign countries threatening to refuse money in foreign aid. Now they will just change the death penalty to life in prison…and that’s if we can believe them.

And what about the three men from Exodus responsible for starting this hate campaign against gay people in Uganda? Well none of them want to be tied into it any more. They are backing away from the very legislation they so articulately inspired AND helped write. One of them actually said, “That’s horrible, absolutely horrible,” he said. “Some of the nicest people I have ever met are gay people.” He was disappointed the bill was so harsh. Too little, too late, don’t you think?  And as for gay Ugandans? “Gay Ugandans already describe a world of beatings, blackmail, death threats like “Die Sodomite!” scrawled on their homes, constant harassment and even so-called correctional rape.”

Maybe next time someone orders and takes a bite out of a Chick-fil-A sandwich they will get a sense of satisfaction thinking they are supporting tradition family values. Maybe they can also take pride in knowing that their money is being put to good use, and they are helping rid the world of gays, one hanging at a time?

Maybe this is a good time to ask, “What would Jesus do?” I am pretty sure He would not order a Chick-fil-A sandwich. I think He would order a fish filet from McDonald's, a company that puts it's money into the McDonald House, helping sick children and their families, and He would embrace all gay people.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day???

The President of the fast food chain Chick-fil-A, Dan Cathy, says he doesn’t believe in gay marriage. Against the comments of Chick-fil-A chain president, is the mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, who says his city doesn’t want any Chick-fil-A’s in Chicago because Cathy’s values are not Chicago’s values. Boston Mayor, Thomas Menino, doesn’t want any discriminating Chick-fil-A’s in his city either. The Jim Henson company, which embraces diversity, is pulling it’s toys out of Chick-fil-A’s children’s meals. Among those who rallied to support Chick-fil-A is Arkansas Governor, Mike Huckabee, who says he supports company executives for taking a stand for God’s values. Add Senator Rick Santorum and religious leaders to the mix. And now, from one’s man’s opinion, we are discussing freedom of religion and freedom of speech. Yesterday was declared Chick-fil-A appreciation day by Mike Huckabee. People came from everywhere to buy chicken sandwiches, even if they had to wait an hour on line, to support this four billion dollar money making business. One church even cancelled services and hired buses to go buy chicken sandwiches. God must be looking down very pleased to see that He takes second place to Chick-fil-A.

I had never heard about Chick-fil-A before. I have been trying to wrap my mind around this topic long enough to make some sense of it and blog it. It’s not easy because this whole thing is just so ridiculous there are no words or logic to explain how this whole situation got blown out of proportion. First of all, Dan Cathy is entitled to his opinion, whatever it is, whether I or others agree with him or not. Second of all, no mayor has the right to decline a business from opening in their city based on the religious beliefs of it’s president. It’s not legal and neither Chicago nor Boston would have been legally able to follow through on their blocking the business from opening in their city. That might have been the end of it, but no. Too simple.

Instead, the situation gets more ridiculous. A Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day? Really? Is that necessary? Don’t we have other things, more important things, that we can set a day aside to appreciate besides a chicken sandwich chain? What about the different branches of our military, police officers, firefighters, teachers, doctors, nurses, EMT’s? I never heard an all out effort to give them an appreciation day. How about researchers who are looking for a cure for cancer? Maybe they deserve some appreciation? Or, how about we all donate the money we would have spent on all fast food, for a day or a week, to let’s say St. Jude’s Hospital? Maybe they deserve some appreciation for saving children’s lives from cancer? But no, instead we have thousands of people, dropping what they are doing, to go out and buy chicken sandwiches from a thriving multibillion dollar business. Does this even make sense? 

The whole issue exploded because everyone is giving one man’s opinion more attention than it deserved and it has started a division among so many people. A political division and a religious division. At a time when we should be coming together and working together to help our country through a financial crisis, we are further divided by a chicken sandwich. Everyone has an agenda. The politicians want to use this as an excuse to further their cause for or against gay marriage. Religious institutions wants to jump on this opportunity to rally support for traditional marriage. Everyone who thinks this is about freedom of speech is misguided. Dan Cathy said what he said, and would have suffered no repercussions for it at all. Now, he is profiting even more from all the free publicity and all the extra chicken sandwich sales. Maybe he’ll run for President of the United States next? This country is just plain crazy if you ask me. 

Not too long ago, JCPenney hired Ellen Degeneres as their spokesperson. Some people went nuts over that. Why? Because Ellen is gay and JCPenney’s customers believe in traditional values. How dare they pick such a sweet and loving person as their spokesperson? Maybe they should have picked Angelina Jolie, who has been living out of wedlock for years? At least she is not gay. How about Jennifer Lopez? She loves traditional marriage so much she has done it three times already and now has her own boytoy maybe looking to make him a fourth husband. Is that ridiculous or what?

Why can’t we live and let live? Why can’t we discuss anything intelligently? We don’t all have to agree on everything. It’s not a personal attack if someone has a different opinion than ours. We can respect each other’s opinions while still having our own. That’s all this is about. People not respecting other’s people’s rights to their own opinions. And what good has been accomplished with all this back and forth banter? A very rich man is getting richer by the minute.