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Name: Don
Gender: Male
Hometown: Massachusetts
Home country: United States
Member since: Sat Sep 1, 2012, 02:28 PM
Number of posts: 60,536

Journal Archives

Anti-Gay Christian Group Refuses To Accept Mail With New Harvey Milk Stamp

Fundamentalist Christian group American Family Association is urging members not to accept any mail postmarked with the U.S. Postal Service’s newly released Harvey Milk stamp, the first U.S. stamp to feature an openly gay elected official.

“Honoring predator Harvey Milk on a U.S. postage stamp is disturbing to say the least. Harvey Milk was a very disreputable man and used his charm and power to prey on young boys with emotional problems and drug addiction,” an AFA press release said Wednesday. “He is the last person we should be featuring on a stamp.”

As one of the first openly gay elected officials in the United States, Milk’s efforts to advance LGBT rights earned him the Medal of Freedom posthumously from President Barack Obama in 2009. The 2008 Academy Award-winning biopic "Milk” was also inspired by the icon.

The AFA, however, viewed the historic commemorative stamp as a way for “the radical homosexual lobby” to “undoubtedly encourage businesses to use these stamps -- all in the name of inclusiveness, political correctness and diversity.”


Texas Restaurant That Refused 'Fag' Customers Touted As Gay Bar Online

05/31/2014 11:36 am EDT

A Texas restaurant that refused to serve "fag" customers is now getting some positive reviews online for being a "gay bar."

Internet users have taken to Yelp to write reviews about Big Earl's Bait House and Galley Cafe in Pittsburg, Texas, where a waitress told one gay couple not to return because they "don't serve fags here." The waitress who made the homophobic remark is the daughter of owner Earl Cheney, and Cheney defended her sentiment.

After the story broke on local news outlets, people began writing reviews for Big Earl's claiming the Texas restaurant is actually a gay bar. Its Yelp page has been flooded with photos of same-sex couples and an image of the store's billboard has been manipulated to read "Big Gay Al's."

One Yelp review reads: "Lovely place to bring your same-sex partner to and show how much you love him/her as much as their food! The more flamboyant, the better!"


Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi: Gay Marriage Would Cause Harm

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The attorney general of Florida says in court documents that recognizing same sex marriages performed in other states would disrupt existing marriage laws and "impose significant public harm."

Eight gay couples and the American Civil Liberties Union sued the state in federal court in March. The lawsuit argues Florida is discriminating against the couples by not recognizing same-sex marriages performed in states where they are legal.

Attorney General Pam Bondi, a Republican who was named in the lawsuit along with fellow GOP Gov. Rick Scott and other state officials, earlier this month filed a lengthy response that asks a federal judge to throw out the lawsuit for several reasons, saying a federal court shouldn't rule on a state's marriage laws.

Bondi's office also argues that the state has a legitimate interest in defining marriage as between a man and woman. Florida first banned same-sex marriages nearly two decades ago and voters reinforced that ban when they passed a constitutional amendment in 2008.


Herman Cain says he might run for president again

Source: Washington Post

NEW ORLEANS -- Herman Cain, who ended his 2012 presidential campaign amid allegations of multiple affairs, said Saturday that he might run for president again in 2016.

Cain, in a speech at the Republican Leadership Conference here, brought up the prospect of another run toward the end of his speech. He then suggested he would do it if he were called by God.

“I do not know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future," the Georgia businessman said. "And I trust in God.” Cain, 68, was a brief front-runner for the GOP nomination in 2011 but dropped out, before any actual votes were cast, in early December of that year.

Cain got a rise out of the crowd when he taunted the media and liberals whom he blamed for his ouster. "The liberals thought that they had shut me up," Cain said as the crowd rose to its feet. "I'm back!"


Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2014/05/31/herman-cain-says-he-might-run-for-president-again/

Herman Cain Says He Might Run For President Again In 2016


If he does decide to run again, Cain would likely face fresh scrutiny over multiple allegations of sexual harassment at the National Restaurant Association, not to mention his infamous "9-9-9" plan that one study found would have raised taxes on 84 percent of Americans.


Bill O'Reilly Stunned When Jorge Ramos Calls Him Out For GOP Bias

TOM KLUDT – MAY 31, 2014, 11:17 AM EDT

Jorge Ramos offered a blunt and critical assessment of the American press this week. but Bill O'Reilly wanted to make sure the popular Spanish-language broadcaster wasn't talking about him.

During an appearance on the "O'Reilly Factor" on Friday, Ramos expanded upon the comments he made in an interview this week with Politico. He told O'Reilly that many journalists are more concerned about maintaing friendly relations with their sources and complained that Washington, D.C. "feels like a club."

But surely Ramos recognized there are exceptions to the rule, asked a smirking O'Reilly. The Fox News pundit did not like the answer he received.

"Of course there are exceptions, but we all have biases," Ramos said. "You have your own biases. I mean, whenever you're covering Obamacare or Benghazi or supporting the Republican Party more [than] the Democratic Party."

more + video

Only American P.O.W. From Afghan War Is Freed

Source: New York Times

The lone American prisoner of war from the Afghan conflict, captured by insurgents nearly five years ago, has been released in exchange for five Taliban prisoners held at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention facility, Obama administration officials said Saturday.
Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is now with American military forces in Afghanistan.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/01/us/only-american-pow-from-afghan-war-is-freed.html?emc=edit_na_20140531

U.S. officials: Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl released in Afghanistan

U.S. officials say Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who was taken hostage in June 2009, was released early Saturday in exchange for five Afghan Taliban prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay.

Read more at:

Chris Christie quietly implodes: Why his big “accomplishments” have fallen to pieces

Chris Christie quietly implodes: Why his big “accomplishments” have fallen to pieces

Distracted by Bridgegate, the national press has missed the unraveling of the entire Chris Christie myth


The federal investigations into Bridgegate and the alleged shakedown of Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer haven’t yet been released to the public, but Chris Christie’s own self-exonerating Potemkin inquiry has. So it would be understandable if one concluded the governor had made it through the worst challenge of his political career more or less unscathed. Christie certainly appears to believe this, having recently proclaimed that, if he runs for president in 2016, Bridgegate will by that point be seen as “footnote.” Indeed, he very much sounds like a man who still plans on running for president.

But here’s the funny thing: After a series of post-Bridgegate failures, embarrassments and potential scandals (yes, there are more), Christie’s chances at winning the White House are worse than ever. Not only is he now associated with suspicions of petty corruption but, perhaps more importantly, his greatest accomplishments besides getting elected as a Republican, twice, in New Jersey — improving the state’s finances and reforming its public workers’ pension — are falling to pieces. Surveying the damage, Tom Moran, leader of the Star-Ledger’s editorial board (which endorsed Christie’s reelection in 2013), put it rather simply, saying Christie’s presidential hopes had been “finally snuffed out, once and for all.”

Here’s a quick recap of the many bits of bad news for Christie that Moran believes constitute, in sum, a decisive blow: In part because the New Jersey economy has performed so poorly during Christie’s tenure (it’s ranked 48th in the country in private-sector job creation, tied with the economic powerhouse known as Mississippi), the state’s finances, which Christie used to brag about fixing, are in utter disarray. Its debt, for example, has been downgraded by Wall Street rating agencies six times under his leadership — three times in 2014 alone. Christie now faces a budget gap for this and the coming fiscal year that is nearly $3 billion; and because the state constitution mandates that the government balance the budget by June 30, Christie has now been forced to find the money by reneging on a key part of his landmark pension reform agreement, taking funds that were supposed to go toward public workers’ pensions and using them to fill the budget gaps instead.



by Justin Jones

Over the past three decades, Parisian photographer and filmmaker Sebastien Lifshitz has been obsessed with vintage photographs, collecting anonymous albums from flea markets around the world. But, when he stumbled upon a collection of personal photo albums once belonging to a gay couple in the 1950s, Lifshitz was struck by the fearlessness of queer couples of the past. “It was quite unusual to have intimate photographs of gay people because most of the time they had to be very discreet,” he told The Daily Beast. To produce these kinds of pictures came with the risk of being exposed—by developing the film—during a time when it was generally unacceptable to be open about your same-sex partner. “For me, it is a memory that we need to show—all these attitudes, the freedom, and the open minded spirit of the past.” Spanning the years from 1900 to 1970, Lifshitz's recent book, The Invisibles: Vintage Portraits of Love and Pride, covers three aspects of yesteryear's queer lifestyles—people clearly in same-sex relationships, those that are ambiguous, and groups that simply play with gender norms. With no context of the lives of those presented, we are left with a glimpse of the past that both accepted and embraced an “alternative” lifestyle.

The pictures:

The True Meaning of the Second Amendment

Malcolm Jones

Michael Waldman’s history of the most ambiguous part of the Bill of Rights covers 200 years of uneventful jurisprudence. Then in 2008, everything changed.

“Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail; without it, nothing can succeed.”

In his tart, concise The Second Amendment: A History, Michael Waldman quotes that statement from Abraham Lincoln by way of explaining that judges, even Supreme Court justices, are not much different from politicians when it comes to public opinion: It informs, even where it does not direct, their actions and decisions.

Waldman argues persuasively that it was no coincidence that the Supreme Court only got around to affirming the individual’s right to gun ownership in 2008—by then the court’s decision in District of Columbia v. Heller was more or less in line with public opinion, which itself had changed markedly over time, thanks largely to a two-pronged propaganda blitz by the National Rifle Association and the equally vociferous arguments of conservative legal scholars. In 1959, a Gallup poll reported that 60 percent of Americans favored banning handguns; by 2012, that figure had dropped to 24 percent. Waldman is not cynically suggesting that the Supreme Court is a slave to public opinion. Rather, he is pointing out what should be obvious but is too often ignored: The court does not operate in a vacuum. Our view of the Second Amendment, he writes, “is set at every stage [of the nation’s history], not by a pristine constitutional text, but by the push-and-pull, the rough-and-tumble of political advocacy and public agitation.”

This typically shrewd observation stamps Waldman as not just a preeminent legal scholar but a sensible person, someone worth reading, in other words, even if you don’t agree with him. Not that many people who don’t agree with him are likely to read this book, except to attack it. The debate over guns in this country rarely attracts the undecided or anyone comfortable living with shades of gray.


Hillary: GOP Exploits Dead of Benghazi

Exclusive: Hillary Clinton’s Benghazi chapter

By MAGGIE HABERMAN | 5/30/14 5:07 AM EDT

Hillary Clinton offers a detailed account of the deadly attack on the American embassy in Benghazi — and a pointed rebuttal to Republican critics who’ve laced into her over the incident — in a much-anticipated chapter of her forthcoming book, “Hard Choices,” obtained by POLITICO.

“Those who exploit this tragedy over and over as a political tool minimize the sacrifice of those who served our country,” Clinton writes in the gripping chapter, “Benghazi: Under Attack.”

Casting doubt on the motivations of congressional Republicans who have continued to investigate the attacks, including with an upcoming House select committee, Clinton continues: “I will not be a part of a political slugfest on the backs of dead Americans. It’s just plain wrong, and it’s unworthy of our great country. Those who insist on politicizing the tragedy will have to do so without me.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/05/hillary-clintons-benghazi-chapter-107240.html#ixzz33EXkRXhz
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