Study: Gay Health Imperiled By Denial Of Marriage

Tell us something we didn't already know!

A new national study shows widespread psychological and social harm inflicted on same-sex couples because they are denied the right to marry.

The study, called “I Do, But I Can’t" was released at a San Francisco news conference Tuesday by the National Sexuality Resource Center and is the first first peer-reviewed study to analyze the impact of marriage denial on the mental health and well being of gay men and lesbians.

The co-authors are Gilbert Herdt, PhD, anthropologist, and director of the National Sexuality Resource Center at San Francisco State University, and Robert Kertzner, MD, practicing psychiatrist, and Adjunct Associate Research Scientist in the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University.

They found that on average, married individuals have better mental health, more emotional support, less psychological distress, and lower rates of psychiatric disorder than the unmarried.
"Marriage denial creates what experts call minority stress, the psychological effects of constant discrimination that bars individuals from the legitimate means of achieving goals that are valued by the society in which they live,” said Herdt.

"Lesbians and gay men work just as hard as heterosexuals do in creating and maintaining committed relationships, but they do not get the same tangible benefits."

The study also found that heterosexual networks are subtle but critical mechanisms that support marriage.

A case study of a town in rural Oregon revealed how heterosexuals routinely relied on churches, schools, and neighborhood visibility to secure or enhance jobs, access social support such as childcare, and form local political alliances. A same-sex couple residing in the same town was shut out of this structure of opportunities.

Minority group members were seen as disadvantaged in attaining monetary success because of exclusion from common social structures. For lesbians and gay men, marriage denial leads to a similar minority group disjunction between goals and opportunities the report says.
A gay man, Stuart Gaffney, told reporters about himself and his long-time partner, Jonathan Lewis.

"When we were able to marry in San Francisco, the burden of shame was lifted away. We had a taste of all we had missed. Thirty days later our marriage was invalidated and we felt the shame placed back upon us,” Gaffney said.

"The stigma and harm caused by denying committed lesbian and gay couples the choice to marry fuels a vicious cycle,” added Herdt.

"Fictitious stereotypes attribute promiscuity to gay men and lesbians, fueling the false belief that they are immoral and reinforcing in the minds of critics the ineligibility of lesbians and gay men for marriage and parenthood. The new proliferation of this old prejudice through the denial of marriage by sexual orientation, like all injustice, is harmful to us all.”

The findings of the report come as no surprise to people engaged in mental health in the gay community.

Earlier this month 365Gay.com reported that a counseling center that provides psychotherapy services to Austin's LGBT community found that the constitutional amendment passed by Texas voters last November is taking a toll on the mental of health of gays and lesbians in the state.

A British study released this month also found that legalized same-sex unions boosts both the mental and physical health of gays and lesbians.

Children of the Corn???

The title may be fantastical, but it may not be far from the truth.

Has anyone else noticed the consistent attack on public schools lately? There's constantly a scandal. Here in TN, nearly every other day, there is a new news report about sexual misconduct between teachers and students, and it crosses all lines. There's constant reports of misuse of funds and misuse of power and misuse of this, that, and the other. Fear is being built up over the schools.

Reports come in left and right about teachers teaching "inappropriate" subject matter or principals not letting kids pray at lunch or something else silly. Then you have the groups trying to shut down anything and everything that doesn't reflect something directly Christian in nature (not just religious...Christian). Gay-Straight Alliances...attacked as sex groups. Health education classes...attacked as teaching homosexuality and promiscuity. Biology classes...attacked for not teaching that the only way the world could have been created was in 7 days by a mysterious, omniscient, vengeful, male God!!!!

Now, we have this...Generation Joshua! Their goal is to "ignite a vision in young people to help America return to her Judeo-Christian foundations."

There are 31 chapters in the nation with the largest in East Tennessee (no surprise there!).

This group is actively engaged in the legislative and political process and growing their organization through youth and child involvement.

Fourteen-year-old President Bill Waldrep says his group is against abortion and same sex marriage. As a faith based organization, Generation Joshua promotes conservative viewpoints. 16 year old Kaity Proctor is taking a stand against separation of church and state.

"We took the church out of the state, but you've still got that thing of our founding fathers were Christians and they put God in the government and the way things have gone now, it's just gone almost," Kaity says.

Ah, yes, do one of two things: take kids out of public schools where there is free thought and open inquiry or dismantle and destroy public schools from the inside out by eliminating free thought and open inquiry.

What's the best way to do that when we know that the next generation is the most open-minded and tolerant but to raise up little hatemongering bigots from an early age?

A Tale of Two Stories in Alabama

Similar topics but at different ends of the spectrum...

This highlights, I think, the diametically opposed world's we now exist in. On one end, you have extremist right-wing religiopoliticians whipping their red meat base into a frenzy over the scary gay couple they've never met wanting to get married. On the other end, you have the results of that fear culminating in the death of a gay man and a weak sentencing of his killer because he was able to use "the gay panic" defense.

I would say "only in Alabama," but I don't think that's so anymore. It just so happens these stories DO come out of Alabama.

James L. Evans of Auburn First Baptist Church bravely steps into the shoes of his predecessors of civil rights causes. He is highly-regarded and makes no bones about the negative politics and underhanded use of religion to gain political points.

Pam's House Blend has an excellent article linking the Decatur Daily about Rev. Evans.

In Alabama, the last thing we need to worry about is a surge of gay couples flooding the courthouse with marriage requests. In Alabama, we need to worry about the future of our public school system. We need to be concerned about the status of our healthcare safety net for children and senior adults. We need to be worried about an unfair tax structure and grossly ineffective constitution.

We have some serious issues before us here in Alabama, but gay marriage is not one of them. It is a wedge issue, a whip designed not to inspire voters to vote for better government, but to frighten voters into electing a savior.

And the last time I checked, that job was already taken.

Pam also pulls a report out of Birmingham of 20-year-old Raymond Carlisle who killed adjunct professor of sociology at Birmingham Southern College, Sammie Speigner III, and then claimed the "gay panic" defense saying he was attacked by Speigner. Of course, considering Speigner is dead, we'll never know for sure.

Carlisle says the attack left him "traumatized." Yes, he was so traumatized that after he killed Speigner he "stole the professor's credit card to buy beer, cigarettes and gasoline later in the day while joyriding with friends. Even worse, he rented the car to another friend and was finally arrested while smoking dope inside the car, which he had upfitted with a new tag and freshly tinted windows."

For this, he could get paroled in 10 years. No problem, it's not like a gay man's life means anything...at least, not in Alabama.


Say What?!

From Pam's House Blend:

Bring on the End Times

Pastors of some of the largest evangelical churches in America met recently in Inglewood to polish strategies for starting five million new churches worldwide in 10 years -- an effort they say they hope will hasten the End Time.

The Rapture and Second Coming of Jesus always has been the ultimate goal of evangelicalism. But when that would occur was any Christian's guess.

The "Billion Souls Initiative" of the Global Pastors Network aims to shorten the path to Judgment Day by partnering church resources with the latest communications systems to spread the gospel.

In an interview at Faith Central Bible Church in Inglewood, James Davis, president of the campaign, said, "Jesus Christ commissioned his disciples to go to the ends of the Earth and tell everyone how they could achieve eternal life.

"As we advance around the world, we'll be shortening the time needed to fulfill that great commission," he said. "Then, the Bible says, the end will come."

The only good thing to come from this is that these nutcases will be Raptured away from the rest of us so we can FINALLY live in peace! Please Jesus save us from your crazy ass followers and their Republican tools!

You Know You're Still a Republican If...

Got this AWESOME list from a fellow blogger site. Very funny!

You Know You're Still a Republican If...

You are more upset about Brokeback Mountain than Abu Ghraib.

You can’t stand Hilary Clinton’s hair but you have no problem with Tom DeLay’s.

You think Global Warming is no big deal but environmentalists are a major problem.

You support the "war on drugs" but think Rush Limbaugh is being prosecuted unfairly.

You think professional athletes make too much money but Sam Walton’s kids deserve everything they have.

You like the way George Bush walks.

You think Al Gore is "wooden" and Donald Rumsfeld has charisma.

You think CNN is biased but Fox News is neutral.

You like the sound of Newt Gingrich’s voice.

You are sure the United States has the best education and health care systems in the world.

You think Dick Cheney is a straight shooter.

You think Michael Chertoff’s beard makes him look distinguished.

You think the problem with our health care system is lawyers.

You think it was more important to locate Monica Lewinsky’s blue dress than to locate weapons of mass destruction.

You don’t believe "terrorism" has made Rudy Giuliani an incredibly rich man.

You believe freedom of speech covers everything Pat Robertson says and does, but burning a flag should be illegal.

You can be in the same room with Brit Hume.

You have yourself convinced that the country and world are better off now than 5 years ago.


How Would You Feel?

How would you feel if you had to go to work everyday wondering if your co-workers had gone to the polls and just voted against your relationship, if they had just invalidated you forever?

How would that make you feel?

I'm finding out the hard way. Our state ACLU has been trying to help us fight a legal way out of this, but the inevitable will probably come in November. Citizens will push buttons and pull levers in Tennessee to validate or invalidate my 10 year monogamous relationship.

The concept still astounds me. Jesus, all I want to do is to be left alone so I can care for my partner. Why does this bother everyone so much?


From the Great Minds of Bloggers

I'm pulling this post from a thread below. Thank you Bill for your wonderful comments! Incredibly insightful and well-spoken! It speaks to the heart of the current issues and troubles. We must continue to speak out...

I wonder how history will view this period of American politics. This ruse of making gays the boogeymen, the whipping boys, for the moral ills and the transmogrification of traditional American family values into the decadent excesses and moral ambiguities of 2006. Frightening this must be to those over 60. But even more frightening to those who so fear change, so hold dear the security of their status and the comfort of their family and the esteem of their position in society – to see all around them, wretched moral decay. Oh, politicians are clever and this generation has produced some of the cleverest. And in Machiavellian style they have looked for a scapegoat – not unlike how other minorities have been scapegoat in the past – we all know about those.

Whether there are witches to burn, or heretics to torture, or Jews to incinerate – or homosexual perverts to bash. Whip up frenzy, diatribes of ignorance, even exhort from your pulpits to exorcise the demons. Bring down the queers and their liberal weak nelly girly men supporters – for we are Americans, strong men brave and proud, and our women folk obedient and dutiful.

Nature seems to require that history repeat itself.

State after state has heard the call – rise up and defend your families, your youth, from the queer hoards that are at your borders. Carve deep into your most sacred texts, that no queer is to be tolerated, no sexual deviant quartered, no homo pervert to be comfortable in your midst. Roll back if necessary the very foundations of equality and permit the shadow of dark beliefs, from chapel and church, to take the helm of state and guide our nation through these waters.

And from heaven’s rim must Copernicus and Newton, Darwin and Galileo, even Socrates and Plato sadly shake their heads at how past lessons learned are lost. And how an extreme authoritarian right can, in the name of all that is good and holy, cause such pain, such anguish such inequity.

The hallmarks through time are glaringly similar – hypocrisy thy name is zealous conservatism. Lie enough and the ignorant masses believe, even you will begin to swallow your own lies. Oh how arrogant it is to have beliefs of one forced on another – for beliefs are just that, imaginings without fact. And when fact is dismissed out of hand, then one begins to have insight into principle motivations – power. Power and more power. Power for survival – to insure security of self and family. Power commands respect.

And the Republican Party has cleverly taken attention away from their naked power grab by turning such a powerful spotlight on the sexual bogeyman hiding in everyone’s ignorance.

And state after state is brought into this unholy alliance such that an overwhelming tyrannical majority is at the gates of the very Constitution – determined to craft hysteria into solid and everlasting law. In the name of good and God.

Oh how far have we as a people drifted, not just from God’s message but also from democracy’s message. How far from the idea that “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” was preeminent. That love and tolerance hold the majestic heights. That reason, common sense, humility, and individual accountability supercede myth, ignorance, superstition.

Odd, one might think this wouldn’t happen at a time when America’s stated position around the world is liberty and equality and recognition of minority rights. We fight that Iraqi women can vote, that Afghan girls can go to school. We demand that China give it’s population free and unfettered access to truthful information.

Yet – at home – we legislate and mandate the second-class status of millions of Americans who, through no action or fault of their own, happen to be of a different sexual orientation. We object, as a nation, to the beheading of homosexuals in Muslim countries – but can not see our own type of intolerance here.

Realizations have swept the world over and over through time, fighting against ignorance and those whose vested interests are at risk. But fact and reality eventually win out. As it is now in much of Europe – who as distant parents have come to realize essential truths not yet accepted by an arrogant and upstart progeny.

Timing is everything – and without the match, that spark of the Massachusetts Supreme Court decision that ignited this bonfire – perhaps this whole ugly episode would have been avoided, as the generations next in line are far more knowledgeable, accepting, progressive, and unfrightened of homosexuals. That generation may well have even expanded gay rights in conformity with The Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Canada and in line with the thinking of much of the western world. And certainly in line with scientific and medical opinion.

And it may end up as an historical irony that the religious right’s ascendancy on this issue may be both short lived and followed by a backlash, that for some time will brand such power grabs from the right as exactly what they are. The Inquisition had their moment. Osama had his moment. The Nazis had their moment. And far right extremist religious conservatives in American may surely have theirs. But there is always a price to pay and history will record that as well.


Adoption and Parent Rights New Hotbed Issue

In case you haven't noticed, more and more stories are popping up in the news not about the SCARY gay marriage topic, but about the more low lying issues of gay adoption and parental visitation rights, particularly of gay parents who are now in custody battles with their partners.

Just like straight couples, gay couples meet, fall in love, decide to have kids, and then sometimes fall out of love. Then the custody battles start.

This case in Utah is a prime example:

Utah Moves To Block Gay Parent Visitation Rights

Also, there is an ongoing case of a dissolved relationship between a lesbian couple has been battled back and forth between the Virginia and Vermont courts. Virginia has extreme laws forbidding recognition of gay relationships and the relationship (or lack thereof) of gay parents to their children. Vermont, where the couple had a civil union, on the other hand, recognized the validity of the relationship. Virginia claims it doesn't have to recognize another state's laws. What a mess when everyone is doing their own little thing!

For all the people who think a little paperwork at your local attorney can cure all, don't be fooled! The ones who have been cooking up these legal battles have been thinking this through for a long time. They're happy to see each state coming up with their own private solution. It wreaks legal and social havoc, plus they've had the opportunity to stack the courts their way so they are damn happy to get us in a courtroom.

Oh, no, we don't need no stinkin' marriage! Just give me the freakin' stack of paperwork and the court date. Believe me, it's already been set.

NY LGBT Leader Refuses to Support Hillary

This is indicative of the divide being created within the Democratic Party between the GLBT community and its leaders.

Since the death kneels to our community of Don't Ask, Don't Tell and especially DOMA, that were signed by Hillary's husband, the Democratic Party and the GLBT community have been heading toward an inevitable clash.

Like stated in this article, I can't see the logic or reason behind giving money to candidates that have been very clear in their disdain for our community. It's all well and good that Hillary has supported AIDS-funding (bully for her), but she still supports a "separate and UNequal" status, basically second-rate citizenship for gay Americans. That is NOT acceptable!

If you back off from this what you find is a candidate who gives pity or sympathy support to a section of American society. She feels sorry for us so she gives half-assed support for us, but never equality. For that, bitch, you don't get our money.

Gay Rights Leader Calls For Halt To LGBT Support For Hillary Clinton


N.J. Cop in Benefits Battle Dies

Lt. Laurel Hester died Saturday morning at her home only weeks after winning a long battle with Ocean County freeholders over who would get her benefits. She was 49.

Hester's longtime partner Stacie Andree was at her bedside when she died.

Hester had been ill with cancer for some time. Until she became too ill to work Hester was a lieutenant with the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office. She had worked there for 23 years - more than half her life - and was a member of the New Jersey Police and Firemen's Retirement System.

Although the state's five other pension systems allow its members to pass pension benefits to domestic partners the NJPFRS does not. Under the state's domestic partner law local governments can transfer pension benefits.

For months Ocean County freeholders refused to allow Hester to transfer her benefits - amounting to about $13,000.

Knowing that she had very little time to live Hester made a final plea from her hospital room.
Appearing weak, and breathing with the help of a machine, she said on a video tape that she feared partner Stacie Andree would lose the home they shared after Hester dies.

Nevertheless, freeholders refused to reopen the issue. But following news coverage including television reports which showed Hester's deteriorating condition, freeholders were besieged with critical phone calls and emails.

Fearing a backlash from voters state GOP leaders from the county held a conference call with freeholders and threatened to bring in legislation that would amend the police and fire pension fund to permit domestic partners to receive benefits.

Freeholders quickly agreed to reopen the case.

In a special meeting on January 25, they quickly voted to allow the transfer of benefits. Despite her fragile condition, and against her doctors' wishes Hester showed up at the meeting to personally thank the politicians.

In a voice barely audible Hester thanked the freeholders saying it "was democracy at its best."

While Ocean County politicians dithered over transferring the benefits nearly a half dozen other municipal governments in the state immediately changed local laws to permit the transfer of benefits to same-sex domestic partners and the case became a rallying point for gays and lesbians across New Jersey for full marriage rights.

Arguments were heard earlier this week at the state Supreme Court in a marriage equality case.


Is It Genes or Choice?

Is It Genes Or Choice?

The discovery that affiliation with the Republican Party is genetically determined was announced by scientists in the current issue of the journal NURTURE, causing uproar among traditionalists who believe it is a chosen lifestyle.

Reports of the gene coding for political conservatism, discovered after a decades-long study of quintuplets in Orange County, CA, has sent shock waves through the medical, political, and golfing communities.

Psychologists and psychoanalysts have long believed that Republicans' unnatural disregard for the poor and frequently unconstitutional tendencies resulted from dysfunctional family dynamics -- a remarkably high percentage of Republicans do have authoritarian domineering fathers and emotionally distant mothers who didn't teach them how to be kind and gentle.

Biologists have long suspected that conservatism is inherited. "After all," said one author of the NURTURE article, "It's quite common for a Republican to have a brother or sister who is a Republican." The finding has been greeted with relief by Parents and Friends of Republicans (PFREP), who sometimes blame themselves for the political views of otherwise lovable children, family, and unindicted co-conspirators.

One mother, a longtime Democrat, wept and clapped her hands in ecstasy on hearing of the findings. "I just knew it was genetic," she said, seated with her two sons, both avowed Republicans. "My boys would never freely choose that lifestyle!" When asked what the Republican lifestyle was, she said, "You can just tell watching their conventions in Houston and San Diego on TV: the flaming xenophobia, flamboyant demagogy, disdain for anyone not rich, you know."

Both sons had suspected their Republicanism from an early age but did not confirm it until they were in college, when they became convinced it wasn't just a phase they were going through.

The NURTURE article offered no response to the suggestion that the high incidence of Republicanism among siblings could result from their sharing not only genes but also psychological and emotional attitude as products of the same parents and family dynamics.

A remaining mystery is why many Democrats admit to having voted Republican at least once -- or often dream or fantasize about doing so. Polls show that three out of five adult Democrats have had a Republican experience, although most outgrow teenage experimentation with Republicanism.

Some Republicans hail the findings as a step toward eliminating conservophobia. They argue that since Republicans didn't "choose" their lifestyle any more than someone "chooses" to have a ski-jump nose, they shouldn't be denied civil rights which other minorities enjoy.

If conservatism is not the result of stinginess or orneriness (typical stereotypes attributed to Republicans) but is something Republicans can't help, there's no reason why society shouldn't tolerate Republicans in the military or even high elected office -- provided they don't flaunt their political beliefs.

For many Americans, the discovery opens a window on a different future. In a few years, gene therapy might eradicate Republicanism altogether. But should they be allowed to marry?

NOTE: Yes, this is tongue-in-cheek, satire. If you don't get it and you're not laughing, then you're probably a Republican or WAAAYYYY too conservative (lighten up!). Thanks to my friend, Nigel, of the Know Thy Neighbor blog for this funny.

A Brief Intro Intro Into Non-Violent Resistance

An excellent "teaching" post by Sadie B. on the Tennessee Guerilla Women's blog and I wanted to share. A Part II should be forthcoming. Personally, I'll admit I've responded in all of the four ways mentioned, particularly withdrawal, but always come back to resistance. It is the only way to successfully move towards positive and active change.

A Brief Introduction to the Theory of Non-Violent Resistance
Part I (with apologies to Starhawk)

by Sadie B.

We begin with an assumption – the world is not okay the way it is. There are times when it is necessary to struggle.

What I propose to demonstrate to you is that non-violent resistance is a legitimate and effective answer to the problem of injustice.

So what is non-violent resistance?

We’ll start with the resistance part of the construction. One way of looking at it is this, when faced with injustice there are four basic ways we can respond:

1) Compliance – just go along with it because it’s easier that way
2) Rebellion – fight back in a way that damages yourself while leaving your target unscathed
3) Withdrawal – check out of the situation
4) Resistance – fight back in such a way as to change the situation

Compliance is, of course, the easiest path to take, but the problem with it is sort of self-apparent. You are participating in and perpetuating the injustice yourself. This does not solve the problem.

Rebellion is often more emotionally satisfying, but it too has its drawbacks. Imagine, for example, you are a student in a public school where students are treated unfairly. You rebel by dropping out. Without a diploma you are at a disadvantage in the job market, but your absence has no little to no effect on the administration of the school you left behind. It might even strengthen their hand, since from here on out they can point to your miserable self as an example of what happens to people who don’t toe the line.

In the life of an individual, withdrawal is often what we turn to if and when we realize rebellion doesn’t work. You don’t go along with the system 100% but you make no effort to fight it, either. You put your head down and tell yourself none of this is your business, anyway, what do you care? The disadvantages of this approach are more subtle. First of all, when you check out of the situation you are depriving yourself of information that might be important. Information you could use to change things, if only you were paying attention. And secondly, when you withdraw, you deprive the world of yourself. Because you just never know, what if you are the one holding the specialized talent or the key insight, the piece of the puzzle that could turn everything upside down?

Through process of elimination if nothing else, that leaves us with resistance as the most desirable approach. Given the stubborn reality of injustice in the world, doing something to change that reality really is the best we can aspire to.

Something I should point out at this time is that resistance is the best approach, but for this same reason it is the most difficult and draining one. It’s hard. It may be easy to commit a single act of resistance, but to sustain it for days, weeks, months, over multiple issues and in the face of constant confrontation takes more inner strength than regular humans are generally equipped with. We cannot all of us be King, or Ghandi.

But the good news is, we don’t have to. Knowing that resistance is always a possibility makes all of our choices real choices. This is what is important. We can say:

"I will obey this time because this issue is not where I choose to make my stand."
"I will rebel, even if it accomplishes nothing, because I am feeling self-indulgent today."
"I will withdraw now to conserve my strength, but return tomorrow with my eyes open."

What is important is to be aware of our choices, to be aware that we have choices. To be, in the words of one of my favorite people, "non-self-deluding."


Give to the New Bedford Hate Crimes Fund

On Wednesday, February 2, 2006, Jacob D. Robida, 18, entered Puzzles Lounge in New Bedford, MA with a hatchet, a gun and a question. His question was, "Is this a gay bar?

The positive answer that he was given prompted Robida to put three innocent men in the hospital as Massachusetts was rocked with one of the biggest hate crimes in recent times:

Alex Taylor, 29, of Fairhaven was hit in the face multiple times with the hatchet as well as shot in the face by Robida. Alex Taylor remains hospitalized.

Luis Rosado, 22, of New Bedford was shot in the stomach by Robida as he exited the mensroom. Luis Rosado remains hospitalized in serious condition with a shattered liver.

Robert Perry, 52, of Dartmouth who came to the aid of victim, Alex Taylor, received lacerations to the face from the hatchet as well as a bullet wound to his back which just missed his spinal column. Robert Perry thankfully was released but will carry the physical and emotional scars of Jacob Robida's horrific act of violence.

A formal donation site has been set up at KnowThyNeighbor.org for both online and mailed donations.

I won't be setting up the online format, but if you want to mail donations here is what you need to do (donations are tax deductible):

Make your check or money order payable to "Puzzles Victim's Fund" and send to:

St. Anne's Credit Union
c/o Puzzles Victim's Fund
PO Box 0 (zero)
Fall River, MA 02724

Love Casts Out Fear

Update: TN Marriage Story

UPDATE: Judge Decides Marriage of Elderly Man Okay

As it should be!

The attorney for Vallaro's fiancee states:
"Today's victory for Mr. Varallo restored dignity to him as a person and as a man," said Nashville attorney Paul Housch. The decision affirms that people his age "can carry on a fulfilling life, a happy life and be active and live in this world happy."

That's all the rest of us ask for as well: to have our dignity, to live a fulfilling and happy life, and to live in this world happy.

Why do so many people want to stop that from happening?


Talk about Over the Top Nuts

Now I've joked about wanting to secede from the union, but these folks mean it. This is just bizarro world.

Christian Exodus

They will start with cities in South Carolina and spread out to eventually take over local and state government and the judiciary.

Their Plan of Action includes:

To combine with the current Christian electorate in SC to "enable constitutionalists to win the city council, the county council, elected law enforcement positions, and elected judgeships. We will then be able to protect our God-given and constitutionally protected rights within our local community."

They will move from city to city in SC until "the General Assembly of the State is squarely in the hands of Christian Constitutionalists."

They are even establishing an online job board on emigrants to SC can find employment.

The goal of ChristianExodus.org is "the return of constitutionally limited government to the whole of these United States...[and it] will see to it that South Carolina resumes her governmental authority in these matters and that our counties and State ignore federal directives in violation of the 10th Amendment."


U.S. detention camps for political subversives

Okay, this just freaks me the FUCK out!!! This isn't America! This CAN'T be America! WTF?! Are you people crazy or something to like this fascist? Jesus Christ!

U.S. detention camps for political subversives

In another shining example of modern day corporate fascism, it was announced recently that Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root had been awarded a $385 million dollar contract by Homeland Security to construct detention and processing facilities in the event of a national emergency.

The language of the preamble to the agreement veils the program with talk of temporary migrant holding centers, but it is made clear that the camps will also be used "as the development of a plan to react to a national emergency."

Discussions of federal concentration camps is no longer the rhetoric of paranoid Internet conspiracy theorists, it is mainstream news.

Under the enemy combatant designation anyone at the behest of the US government, even if they are a US citizen, can be kidnapped and placed in an internment facility forever without trial. Jose Padilla, an American citizen, has spent over four years in a Navy brig and is only just now getting a trial.

In 2002, FEMA sought bids from major real estate and engineering firms to construct giant internment facilities in the case of a chemical, biological or nuclear attack or a natural disaster.

Okanogan County Commissioner Dave Schulz went public three years ago with his contention that his county was set to be a location for one of the camps.

Alex Jones has attended numerous military urban warfare training drills across the US where role players were used to simulate arresting American citizens and taking them to internment camps.

The move towards the database state in the US and the UK, where every offence is arrestable and DNA records of every suspect, even if later proven innocent, are permanently kept on record, is the only tool necessary to create a master list of 'subversives' that would be subject to internment in a manufactured time of national emergency.

The national ID card is also intended to be used for this purpose, just as the Nazis used early IBM computer punch card technology to catalogue lists of homosexuals, gypsies and Jews before the round-ups began.

Section 44 of the Terrorism Act in Britain enables police to obtain name and address details of anyone they choose, whether they are acting suspiciously or not. Those details remain on a database forever. To date, 119,000 names of political activists have been taken and this is a figure that will skyrocket once the post 7/7 figures are taken into account. At the height of the Iraq war protests, around a million people marched across the country. However, most of these people were taking part in a political protest for the first time and as a one off. Even if we take a figure of half, 500,000 people being politically active in Britain, that means that the government has already registered around a quarter of political activists in the UK.

In truth the number is probably above half because we are not factoring in those already on MI5 'subversive' lists and those listed after the 7/7 bombings, when the powers were used even more broadly.

Concurrently in the US, a new provision in the extended Patriot Act bill would allow Secret Service agents to arrest and jail protesters accused of breaching any security perimeter, even if the President or any other protected official isn't present. The definition of 'free speech zones' can be shifted around loosely and this would open the floodgates for protesters to be grabbed and hauled away in any circumstance at the whim of the Secret Service.

During the 2004 RNC protests, thousands of New Yorkers were arrested en masse in indiscriminate round-ups and taken to Pier 57 (pictured), a condemned, asbestos poisoned old bus depot, where they were imprisoned without charge for up to 24 hours or more.

The existence and development of internment camps are solely intended to be used to round up en masse and imprison 'political dissidents' (anyone who isn't prepared to lick government boots) after a simulated tactical nuke or biological attack on a major US or European city.

TN Judge to Decide if Elderly Man Can Marry Woman

Yes, only in TN (okay, maybe not, but only in some backass backwards red state) would a family actually be going to court to keep their elderly father from marrying the woman he loves. So what if she's younger than him, if he's happy and wants to do it? First Terri Schaivo, and now this! When will everyone stop meddling in our personal lives?! WTF?!

"Part of being alive is being happy, I would assume," said Housch, the woman's lawyer.
"And you can see it in his eyes, you can see it in this man. The way he dresses, the way he looks, he's gleaming with joy, happiness and very proud to be with the one he loves."

Read the whole sordid story HERE!


Jacob Robida dies

Jacob Robida, attacker of gay patrons of Puzzles in New Bedford, MA and ultimately the killer of a cop and a potentially his female companion, died Sunday after being shot by cops in a chase in Gassville, Arkansas.

His tragic death only leaves more questions, not answers. Though what he did was horrible and definitely hateful, I could never wish death on such a troubled soul. I would have rather he been caught, given a proper trial to do his time, to have the chance to provide some answers and insight, and hopefully see the error of his ways.

More on the story here.

Police also say they have found a written note at his mother's house, but they declined to release the contents of the message. Bristol County District Attorney Paul Walsh Jr. only said, "We didn't interpret it necessarily as a suicide note, but it was certainly the note of a desperate man who had some plans to continue doing something violent."


MA Bar Patrons Attacked & Injured

Eighteen-year old suspect still on the loose.

Last night in New Bedford, a man walked into a gay bar and began attacking patrons with a gun and a hatchet. One person suffered a gunshot wound to the chest, another had a gunshot wound to the back and severe cuts to his face, and a third received multiple cuts. The attacker, identified by police as 18 year old Jacob Robida (see photo), then fled the scene.

According to several reports, Robida entered the bar, showed a fake ID, ordered a drink, then walked to the back of the bar by the pool tables and began attacking patrons. The bartender, at the time only self-identifying as Philip out of fear for his safety, described Robida as having a "stone-cold" and "emotionless" look. At one point he asked if the bar was a gay bar.

Robina maintained a website on MySpace.com where there is evidence of a disturbed, sociopathic personality, complete with a room plastered with swastikas and a love for weapons and violence.

What else can be said, I just don't have words. The small community of New Bedford has had an outpouring of support for the bar and its gay citizens. KnowThyNeighbor.org has been following the story closely and encouraging local officials such as MA Gov. Mitt Romney to break with party line to discourage hate crimes against minorities and draw MA citizens together.

Much to my surprise, John Kerry has spoken out against this vicious crime and is encouraging the support of federal hate crimes legislation.

It's time, beyond time.

Local TN Residents Find Hate in the Mail

In a subdivision near Nashville, TN, some residents learned more about hate than they thought they'd probably every know and it was mailed to them at the comfort of their own home.

Residents find racially motivated letters in mailbox

Some Hermitage residents say they are shocked and disgusted by some racially filled pamphlets they received in their mailboxes. Printed on fluorescent paper, the letters convey a message that bashes people from a variety of ethnic and religious groups.

The big question now of course is who is responsible for this, and why do it now?

Residents of the Lakeridge subdivision say the letters showed up in their mailboxes on Wednesday.

"I was very upset. I have two small children, and that is not how we raise our children. For someone to think that in our neighborhood is very disturbing," said Christy Behnke, Neighbor.

The headline of the letter reads:

"Asians, Hispanics, Blacks, Africans, Jews, Gays -- Not Wanted in the Lakeridge Homeowners Association. Have your say."

Christy's neighbors say they are shocked.

"Myself, I could not imagine anyone filled with that much hatred that they would do something like that. It's 2006. This is ridiculous," said Mary Greer, Neighbor.


Bush Protest in Nashville

Yesterday, I attended a protest against Bush here in Nashville. I was making a guess that there were well over 100 people there because we had to spread out over two intersections. The kick ass blogger site Tennessee Guerilla Women confirmed that more like 200 were there! Of course, our local paper The Tennessean has been doing a little written masturbation of El Dictator for the last day or two saying he was warmly welcomed to Nashville. I guess he was asleep in the back of his stretch limo (you know, because he's so concerned about being "addicted to oil") that he missed this sign greeting him. I wonder if all of the other "dignitaries" arriving in their stretch SUV limos (there must have been 20 of them come through!) could see through all of that tinted glass.

Personally, I've never seen such nasty behavior from a bunch of political supporters. I got more "one-finger salutes" yesterday than I think I got through all of middle school. Is that the maturity level and mentality of Bush supporters? Is your best comeback a middle finger? Well, a lot WERE little boys in oversized business suits trying to act grown up. It was worse if they had a lot of them in one big ass SUV or just had some female they were trying to act alpha dog for. The saddest one was the middle-aged man with his teenage daughter. He reached over in front of her to throw his finger at us out the window and shout "F*** YOU!" She was laughing so the old saying "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree" is true. Hate is taught, not inate.

Some great organizations had put together lots of signs for us to use. I had a sign that said, "War is Un-Christian" so I think I got more obscene gestures than most people. Ironic, since flipping the bird is such a Christian thing to do.

Unfortunately, I had to leave before El Dictator got there, because contrary to popular fascist opinion, liberals do work. That's probably why there weren't more people there! They're working! So, I had to get back to it.

Tennessee Guerilla Women have done a fabulous job of covering the protest, and surprisingly, The Tennessean, did a decent job of mentioning the details of the protest, even the obscene gestures and getting a variety of comments.

I highly recommend reading some of the articles The Tennessean wrote yesterday and today. Some of the "pro-Bush" comments are kind of comical. Like, "Public speaking maybe isn't his gift, but I feel like when he feels comfortable, when he's with people who agree with him and understand him, he comes across as more articulate and more confident."

That just speaks for itself!