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RyanPsych

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Member since: Wed Jan 26, 2011, 06:54 PM
Number of posts: 402

Journal Archives

National Lampoon's Romney vacation?

Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, has been out of the country in a multi-country tour. This was likely an effort to shore up his light foreign policy experience. That experience to date has been limited to a Swiss bank account, untold millions of dollars in the Cayman Islands, and creating thousands of jobs in low-paying countries. Unfortunately for Mitt Romney, this tour has turned out to be from one gaffe to another.

The first leg of his trip brought him to the United Kingdom, and succeeded in creating an unflattering image of Romney in the country he once referred to as "a second tier nation" and "just a small island." In fact, his trip already has a Twitter hash-tag: #Romneyshambles.

Romney first got himself in hot water by publicly stating that he was not sure if London could handle the Olympics, calling the situation "disconcerting." Not surprisingly, this offended British politicians and officials, including Prime Minister David Cameron who responded by suggesting that holding the Olympics in downtown London is a bit more tricky than in Salt Lake City, or as Cameron called it, "the middle of nowhere." Romney then told NBC that we would have to wait to see if Britons would "unite" for the Olympics, again offending Cameron and many other Brits. London's eccentric Conservative Mayor Boris Johnson publicly mocked Romney to a crowd of 60,000 Londoners. In light of all this, maybe it is easier to understand why members of the UK's Conservative Party expressed that their "heart" is with Obama.

Romney continued upon this collision course with the UK by publicly acknowledging that he met with the United Kingdom's highly secret intelligence service, MI6 - an acknowledgment that is considered a major gaffe in Britain. Then, he made the British press wonder if he even bothered to learn Labour leader Ed Miliband's name after he referred to Miliband as "Mister Leader." Romney's foreign policy advisors outraged many on both sides of the Atlantic when they told the British newspaper The Telegraph that Romney would be better for Britain because of a shared "Anglo-Saxon heritage" that Obama did not share.

Read more here

Jonathon Capehart: Blacks and Gays: The Shared Struggle for Civil Rights

You may recall that last month Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) and I sparred over same-sex marriage on “Morning Joe.” You may also recall that at the end of the interview, the show’s anchor, Joe Scarborough, asked me, “[W]ould you compare the civil rights struggles of African Americans over 300 years in America to marriage equity?” Without hesitation, I said, “Yes.”

“It’s an issue of civil rights, as you said. It’s an issue of equality. It’s an issue of equal treatment under the law,” I said. “No one is asking for special rights. No one is asking for any kind of special favors. We’re just looking for the same rights and responsibilities that come with marriage and also the protections that are provided under marriage. In that regard overall we’re talking about a civil rights issue and what African Americans continue to struggle with is exactly what lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people are struggling with today.”

That didn’t go over so well with more than a few African Americans. They don’t see the struggles as comparable, equivalent or even related. Last Wednesday, @Brokenb4God tweeted to me, “@CapehartJ still can’t believe u think the choice of being gay is congruent to the struggle of blacks. Ain’t never seen no gay plantations!”

Clearly, she’s from the misguided pray-the-gay-away cabal, so no need to address that. I’ll leave the cheap and provocative “gay plantations” stink bomb alone, too, and get to my main point. What links the two struggles is the quest for equality, dignity and equal protection under the law. In short, gay rights are civil rights. It’s that simple.


keep reading

Quick Scientific Facts That Disprove Myth That Homosexuality is a "Choice"

Since the advent of the gay rights movement, gay and lesbian people have been bombarded by a myth: that their non-heterosexual sexual orientation is nothing more than a "choice" that they made. This myth promotes the notion that sexual minority people are either disordered or sexual deviants. It is propped up by rhetoric from arch-conservative politicians and religious leaders who use it to oppose equal rights for gays and lesbians. However, it flies in the face of scientific truth (and logic).

The myth that sexual orientation is a choice has been promulgated by right-wing Republicans and social Christian groups for years. This includes GOP candidates like Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich. Santorum has referred to homosexuality as a "behavioral thing" that goes against "Biblical truth." Gingrich also views sexual orientation as a choice, saying that gays and lesbians should choose to be "celibate" if they can't be heterosexual. In their defense of the Defense of Marriage Act, House Republicans allege that homosexuality is not "an immutable characteristic; it is behavioral."

<snip>

What do actual psychological and medical organizations say about homosexuality? According to the American Psychological Association, homosexuality is a normal variation of human sexuality that does not indicate any disorder. The association goes on to say that sexual orientation is a romantic, emotional, and physical attraction to members of the same, opposite, or both sexes. The American Psychiatric Association opposes any "reparative therapy" because it has no record of efficacy, and is based on the incorrect premise that homosexuality is a disorder.

What does scientific research say about sexual orientation? Brain image scans have yielded distinct, observable differences between the brains of heterosexuals and the brains of their gay and lesbian peers. Positron Emission Topography scans have indicated that the symmetry between brain lobes of gay men resembles those of heterosexual women. Researchers have also found that the amygdala (area of brain responsible for emotional learning) of gay men and straight women are similar, while the amygdala of straight men and lesbians are similar. According to Dr. Qazi Rahman, a professor of cognitive biology at Queen Mary University of London, these differences can only be formed during the fetal period, which indicates "if you are gay - you are born gay."

keep reading at: http://www.peoplesworld.org/the-choice-myth-about-sexual-orientation

*I don't know about you guys- but it pisses me off to no end when people say that being gay is a choice- and then refuse to even acknowledge how illogical that is

News Bulletin: Ron Paul is a Huge Racist (and a homophobe!)

With Ron Paul ascending in Iowa, winning the hearts of independents, and even the endorsement of Andrew Sullivan, it’s worth pointing something out: Ron Paul is not a kindly old libertarian who just wants everybody to be free. He’s a really creepy bigot.

Around four years ago, James Kirchick reported a lengthy story delving into Paul’s worldview. As Kirchick writes, Paul comes out of an intellectual tradition called “paleolibertarianism,” which is a version of libertarianism heavily tinged with far-right cultural views. The gist is that Paul is tied in deep and extensive ways to neo-Confederates, and somewhat less tightly to the right-wing militia movement. His newsletter, which he wrote and edited for years, was a constant organ of vile racism and homophobia. This is not just picking out a phrase here and there. Fear and hatred of blacks and gays, along with a somewhat less pronounced paranoia about Jewish dual loyalty, are fundamental elements of his thinking. The most comparable figure to Paul is Pat Buchanan, the main differences being that Paul emphasizes economic issues more, and has more dogmatically pro-market views.

How, then, has Paul become a figure of admiration among social liberals?

One reason is that nobody is attacking him. Paul is (correctly) considered to have no chance to actually win the GOP nomination, so debate moderators have not bothered to research his past, instead tossing off generalized questions that allow him to portray himself on his preferred terms. The Republican Establishment is focusing all its fire on Newt Gingrich, and indeed, Paul’s rise in Iowa would greatly aid Mitt Romney’s campaign by preventing an acceptable alternative from emerging from the state with momentum.

keep reading at: http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2011/12/news-bulletin-ron-paul-is-a-huge-racist.html
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