31 August 2010

6 Ways Religious Frauds Try to Make Gays and Lesbians Straight | | AlterNet

6 Ways Religious Frauds Try to Make Gays and Lesbians Straight | | AlterNet:

1. Rubber-band therapy
2. Healing touch therapy
3. Beat your mom to death -- with a tennis racket
4. Get face-to-face and crotch-to-crotch
5. Subliminal messages
6. Shock therapy and ... torture
Make no mistake: every major, reputable professional psychological and medical association has stated that not only is there no evidence supporting the possibility of changing somebody’s sexual orientation, but that such programs harm those involved; depression and suicide are all-too-common in the ex-gay world.

i just finished reading the article again and all i can say is that it made me physically nauseous...especially the 6th method, shock and torture (emphasis added to highlight the "christian" barbarism of it all):

Last year, the Kansas State Collegian printed the tragic story of “Thomas Swanson,” who recounted how his father tried to "beat the gay out of him" before handing his son over to a conversion therapist. During therapy sessions, the counselor told Swanson he already had AIDS and was going to die. But after several sessions, the counselor moved to aversion therapy methods:

After he was seated, each of his hands was strapped to the arm of the chair and softball-size ice blocks were placed in each palm. Then photos of men touching appeared on the screen. At times a heterosexual couple was shown, and the ice was removed. The ice was left on his palms, causing freezing pain, as many photos of homosexual men were shown.

But the ice therapy didn’t eliminate the same-sex attractions. So, his counselor upped the intensity:

Swanson was again strapped to the chair by his hands. Again photos were shown, but this time, there was a level of intimacy that had lacked in the previous sessions.

The men were embracing or perhaps kissing on the cheek and Swanson received intense amounts of heat transferred through gel pads applied to his hands.

“Now it was the burn sensation,” Swanson said. “I still had, for a few years, a huge pink mark across my hand because it would literally burn your skin.

Of course, the ice and heat didn’t work. The next step was electricity:

Very very thin needles were inserted into my fingers, on all 10 fingers, still strapped down, and then the rest of my body was strapped down because they knew what was going to happen,” Swanson said.

As the man turned on the electricity, the pain was so horrible, Swanson still cannot understand why his mother sat in the lobby and did not race to rescue him as he screamed.....

“Electricity was excruciating,” Swanson said with a look of intensity. “I have no way of describing to people how hard I screamed; it was excruciating pain. The pain was horrible, I would lose bowel control, consciousness, mental capacity, so many things with the electricity.

thanks, "mom" (not MY mother, thank GOD!!!). how sick must a parent be to allow such heinous torture to be inflicted on a child and not intervene? in CHRIST'S NAME? I. DON'T. THINK. SO.

now, if you'll excuse me i need a shower...that is if i can find the brillo pads and bleach to wash the hatred off of me.

14 August 2010

Marriage Equality: Which Video Defines It Best? (via HuffPost, natch)

Marriage Equality: Which Video Defines It Best?

if i don't stop watching/reading these articles and don't stop getting myself all worked up over the "fierce advocate's" abdication of advocacy, i'm likely to have an aneurysm before our wedding on 9/30/10.

Alexi Giannoulias, Illinois Senate Candidate, Pledges To Create Senate Progressive Caucus

Alexi Giannoulias, Illinois Senate Candidate, Pledges To Create Senate Progressive Caucus

While his candidacy has been defined, primarily, by his close relationship with the White House and his family's troubled finances, Giannoulias has gradually carved out a niche as a rising progressive voice.

really? a progressive with close ties to this white house? who knew there was one of us that was acceptable to the WH after gibbs' gaffe.

12 August 2010

The Winds of Change Are Blowing: Marriage Equality/Nate Silver Edition

FiveThirtyEight: Politics Done Right: Opinion on Same-Sex Marriage Appears to Shift at Accelerated Pace

"In April, 2009, when we last took a survey of gay marriage polls, we found that support for it had converged somewhere into the area of 41 or 42 percent of the country. Now, it appears to have risen by several points, and as I reported yesterday, it has become increasingly unclear whether opposition to gay marriage still outweighs support for it.

Here is a version of the graph we produced in 2009, but updated to include the dozen or so polls that have been conducted on it since that time, as listed by pollingreport.com. I have also included opinions on gay marriage from the General Social Survey, which asked about gay marriage as long ago as 1988."

people get ready, there's a change a-comin',
don't need no ticket, you just get on board.

11 August 2010

BREAKING: Lt. Col. Fehrenbach Files TRO To Stop his DADT Expulsion!

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (emphasis added):

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) and Morrison & Foerster LLP (MoFo) filed a request for a temporary restraining order on behalf of their client, Lt. Col. Victor Fehrenbach, seeking to block the Air Force from discharging him under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT), the discriminatory law barring gay and lesbian service members from serving openly and honestly. The filing in the United States District Court for the District of Idaho, seeks a court order preventing the Air Force from discharging Lt. Col. Fehrenbach, arguing that the government cannot establish that his continued service on active duty hinders “morale, good order and discipline, and unit cohesion.”

The General Counsel’s Office to the Secretary of the Air Force confirmed to MoFo and SLDN that the Air Force Personnel Board recently reviewed Lt. Col. Fehrenbach’s case and has sent a recommendation to Air Force Secretary Michael B. Donley’s designee. According to Air Force regulations, had the Board recommended to retain Lt. Col. Fehrenbach no further action would have been required by the Secretary or his designee (AFI 36-3206 Chapter 6.10 and Chapter 6.10.1). Although SLDN and MoFo understand the Secretary has delegated his authority to act on the Board’s recommendation, Secretary Donley has the power to step in and retain Lt. Col. Fehrenbach. Without action by the Secretary, the Board’s recommendation is expected to stand and Lt. Col. Fehrenbach could be discharged within days.

A request for a temporary restraining order asks the court to prevent irreparable injury to the plaintiff and preserve the status quo until a more complete hearing can be held on the merits of the case. If the court grants the request, the Air Force will be prevented from discharging Lt. Col. Fehrenbach until a full hearing can be scheduled. The Fehrenbach case is among the first to challenge a discharge under DADT by applying the so-called Witt standard. In the case of Air Force Maj. Margaret Witt, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit – which governs the District of Idaho – held that discharging a service member violates the Constitution unless: (1) the government advances “an important governmental interest;” (2) the government shows the intrusion “upon the personal and private li[fe]” of a service member “significantly furthers that interest;” and (3) the government shows the intrusion is “necessary to further that interest.”

09 August 2010

A Gay-Rights Advocate on Marriage Ban, Celebrity Divorce - TIME

A Gay-Rights Advocate on Marriage Ban, Celebrity Divorce - TIME

I broke up Al and Tipper Gore. And Sandra Bullock and Jesse James. No, I am not a 50-something masseuse or a tattoo model with a thing for Nazi outfits. I'm just a gay man who's about to celebrate his second wedding anniversary. Apparently, my marriage is a menace. According to the Family Research Council, "Gay marriage threatens the institutions of marriage and the family."

For the past two years, I've tried to deny it. But faced with the prospect of even more finger-pointing in the wake of U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker's Aug. 4 ruling against California's Prop 8, I've decided to come out and come clean. I'm claiming the pinko-threat label and wearing it with pride, like the Miss California USA tiara that Carrie Prejean wore until someone leaked those eight videos of her touching her pro-opposite-marriage private parts. Yes, I am responsible for the sorry state marriage is in. The Gores' "shocking" split was no surprise to me. Blame me for breaking America's sweetest heart. (I'd like to take credit for Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston's off-again engagement, but honestly, who except Bristol didn't see that coming?) Jenny and Mark "Appalachian Trail" Sanford, Mel and Robyn Gibson, Speidi — I put them all asunder. I'm here. I'm a home wrecker. Get used to it. (See a photographic history of the gay-rights movement.)

I'm an anti-nuclear-family activist. I think I was born this way. Just ask my divorced-after-four-decades parents. I'd been working on them for what seems like a lifetime. Since they unleashed me on state-sanctioned nuptials in 1966, the U.S. divorce rate has nearly doubled. Gay apologists may say the culprit is the rise of no-fault divorce. But this is America, damn it, and someone somewhere must be at fault. That someone is me.

Real Americans agree that I'm dangerous. In "Gathering Storm," an ad produced by the National Organization for Marriage, a paid actress — but no doubt still a real American — with Sue Sylvester's haircut says I want to change the way she lives. Larry "Wide Stance" Craig voted to amend the Constitution to save the nation from my unholy matrimony. The thrice-divorced Rush Limbaugh warned that "gay marriage would destroy the American family." And, of course, what about the children? I am incapable of "providing a safe and secure and emotionally stable environment" for them, said Family Research Council co-founder George "Rentboy.com" Rekers. (Is there hope for the American marriage?)

I must admit, though, that the thrill is fading. It's getting too easy. Larry King is on his eighth shot at wedded bliss, and I've had a pretty good record with the Best Actress Oscar winners. I want to move on to pre-emptive attacks. I should try getting a proposition passed to ban ugly marriages. Surely the state has a legitimate interest in keeping the hideous from going forth, not to mention multiplying, and I'm sure I could get at least 51% of voters to agree with me. Those who say California's gay-marriage ban should stand make a completely logical point: majority rule should always trump minority rights — activist judges and their equal-protection clause be damned. I mean, what the unattractive do behind closed doors is O.K., I guess, but I don't want to have to see it. And I certainly don't want my tax dollars to promote the homely lifestyle.

Or should I just let them be? If two repellent people want to wake up next to each other every morning for the rest of their lives, it might turn my stomach, but is it really any of my business? It must be hard enough for them to get through the day — there are reflective surfaces everywhere — without having the federal government against them. Allowing dog-faced marriage doesn't mean I love my husband any less, and banning unsightly unions wouldn't give me a better chance at till death do us part. So relax, ugly people; you're free to pursue happiness with the appearance-challenged person of your choice. Love is love, after all, and that's beautiful enough.

08 August 2010


well, crap on a cracker...

to my lone reader: please accept my apologies! i promised to start doing this daily but the best laid plans of mice and men and such...SO, here are links to the stories in the "drafts" folder at blogger...

Rachel Maddow: Odd quiet from defeated Prop 8 supporters:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Rachel Maddow: Prop 8 Case Relied on Two Witnesses Tied to George Rekers | Video Cafe

Prop 8 Ruling Exposes Democrats' Weak Support For LGBT Community

Prop 8 Ban Reactions

Target Apologizes For Political Donation To Group Supporting Anti-Gay Candidate

carry on.

epic battles throughout history:

David vs. Goliath
Tezcatlipoca vs. Quetzalcoatl
King Kong vs. Godzilla
Godzilla vs. Mothra
Ali vs. Foreman, Frazier, Liston, Holmes, Marciano...

and now, the epic to end all epics: BOIES vs. Perkins

shorter version:

03 August 2010

The Anti-Defamation League's Ground Zero Mosque Hypocrisy - The Daily Beast

The Anti-Defamation League's Ground Zero Mosque Hypocrisy - The Daily Beast

The ADL calls itself “the nation’s premier civil rights/human relations agency.” Coming from an explicitly Jewish organization, that’s an audacious claim. But it’s an inspiring one, too. The ADL was born in 1913, after a Georgia jury falsely convicted a Jewish factory owner named Leo Frank of murdering a Christian employee. The men who defamed, and later lynched, Frank were anti-Semites. But they were not only anti-Semites. Three months after Frank’s murder, some of his tormenters met on Georgia’s Stone Mountain to refound the Ku Klux Klan, an organization that would now dedicate itself not merely to terrorizing African-Americans, but to terrorizing Catholics and Jews as well.

What if white victims of African-American crime protested the building of a black church in their neighborhood? Or gentile victims of Bernie Madoff protested the building of a synagogue?

Against this backdrop, the founders of the ADL made their organization a kind of mirror image of the Klan. If the Klan saw anti-Semitism as one component of the struggle to maintain white, Protestant supremacy, the ADL would make its opposition to anti-Semitism one component of the struggle against white, Protestant supremacy. If bigotry was indivisible, anti-bigotry would be indivisible too. “The immediate object of the League is to stop, by appeals to reason and conscience and, if necessary, by appeals to law, the defamation of the Jewish people,” declared the ADL’s charter. “Its ultimate purpose is to secure justice and fair treatment to all citizens alike and to put an end forever to unjust and unfair discrimination against and ridicule of any sect or body of citizens.”

IOKIYAR...for frack's sake.

FROM: http://www.addictinginfo.com/politics.htm BY MATT DESMOND


Senator Franken’s Anti-Rape Amendment to the Defense Appropriations Bill

Benefits for Homeless Veterans

Health Care

Health Care for the 9/11 First Responders who got sick from being at Ground Zero...

The Jobs Bill


Small business lending bill

Financial reform

Stimulus Bill

Oil Spill Liability

Political Ad disclosure bill

Immigration Windfall Oil profits tax bill

Oh yeah and when republicans controlled all 3 branches of government, they

1. deregulated the markets,

2. created 2 wars,

3. killed 6000 Americans,

4. destroyed schools via NCLB

5. made higher education unaffordable,

6. dismantled the NEA,

7. shipped American jobs off to India and China,

8. let New Orleans and millions of Americans get washed away in a natural disaster while they went out for ballgames and birthday cakes ,

9. hunted endangered species from helicopters,

10. shot their own hunting party members,

11. ignored warnings of impending terrorist attacks

12. oversaw the largest expansion of government in history

13. created a department of "FAITH BASED INITIATIVES" in direct violation of separation of church and state

14. tried to use the constitution as a weapon of discrimination

15. squandered our surplus,

16. overspent $7 Trillion, and

17. chanted DRILL BABY DRILL despite clearly not having emergency plans for future disasters.

02 August 2010

More Republican Hypocrisy

NOT. ONE. VOTE. to move to an "up or down vote" (another republican't battle cry wrapped in hypocrisy).

the grand old party of NO is willing to jump up and down, scream and cry and wail about the horrifying effects repealing the bush tax cuts for the wealthiest 1% would have on "small businesses (although they're not accurate in their assertion), but when it comes down to REAL help for small businesses, via extending credit (which is repaid, WITH INTEREST BTW), the republicant's show their true hypocritical colors.


Congress.org - : Key Votes

On the Cloture Motion
Senate Roll Call No. 221
111th Congress, 2nd Session

Rejected: 58-42 (see complete tally)

The Senate rejected ending debate on this bill that aims to expand the availability of credit to small businesses. The Senate may work more on the bill this week

Dead Sea Scrolls Mystery Solved?

absolutely fascinating...dvr set.

Dead Sea Scrolls Mystery Solved?

Ker Than

Published July 27, 2010

The recent decoding of a cryptic cup, the excavation of ancient Jerusalem tunnels, and other archaeological detective work may help solve one of the great biblical mysteries: Who wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls?

The new clues hint that the scrolls, which include some of the oldest known biblical documents, may have been the textual treasures of several groups, hidden away during wartime—and may even be "the great treasure from the Jerusalem Temple," which held the Ark of the Covenant, according to the Bible.

Randy Rainbow "The Morning After Chelsea's Wedding"

oh, meow...hiss AND spit!

25 July 2010

...but does O dare run the risk of causing widdle timmy geithner to have a tantrum?

Left Pushes Hard for Elizabeth Warren

although i earnestly disagree with making this about gender, i do agree she's the best person for the job. that said, the article does make a valid point that women control more discretionary spending than men and, therefore, their voices should be heard.

In her clear-eyed and earnest way, Warren has broken through in testimony on Capitol Hill and on television as a voice for the people, ticking off powerful business interests and irritating the boys' club that Obama has entrusted to steer the economy. If Obama chooses her to head the new consumer agency, she would have to be confirmed by the Senate and would likely provoke a partisan battle on the scale of a Supreme Court nomination. On Friday morning, three Republican senators warned the White House not to use a recess appointment to fill the new position. For Obama, it's a classic political choice: how much of a fight does he want or need going into the fall elections?

His base is telling him that Warren is what the left needs to believe in him again. Obama loves the woman; there have been articles written about how he sought her out, and how admiring he is of her. As the financial-reform legislation made its way through Congress, she was consistently named as the likely head of the first consumer-protection bureau. If Obama backs down now, he looks like he's afraid of a fight, which is not a good perception for a president who needs to burnish his leadership cred going into the November election. Warren is the voice of Main Street, and if the Republicans want to block her, Obama's attitude should be "Bring it on."

make no mistake, timmy and his buddies on wall street DO NOT want a "mommy" to keep an eye on the cookie jar. for that matter, they don't want ANYBODY (regardless of gender) upsetting their ramshackle, roughshod disdain for anyone that doesn't reside on wall street... that's average, every day, middle class americans like you and me, folks.

24 July 2010

please, call it "marriage equality" magazine...

...other than that, right on!

Equally Wed Magazine, The Nation's Premier Same-Sex Wedding Magazine, Gay Weddings, Lesbian Weddings, LGBT Weddings, Gay and Lesbian Honeymoons

disillusioned, indeed! good reporting judy woodruff!

For Democrats, Concern About Momentum as Midterms Approach | PBS NewsHour | July 23, 2010 | PBS

hey, axelrod, 2 words for ya': BITE ME.

DAVID AXELROD, Senior White House Adviser: So, while we were handling that, we were passing comprehensive health insurance reform that we have been fighting for, for a century. While we were doing that, we passed the credit card bill of rights and other financial reforms.

You know, we have done myriad things that will make a difference, including in the areas -- we haven't completed all our work in all these areas, but we have made progress in all these areas, and we're going to keep working at that progress.

we've been trying to pass health INSURANCE reform for a century? BS. the administration can only claim a victory out of semantics. when they caved on health CARE reform they adopted the health INSURANCE reform talking point. f'ing cowards.

"progress in all these areas"? ORLLY? the so-called "progress" for LGBT non-equal citizens is laughable, AT BEST.

now, now kerry...i *really* like you. your reporting is generally spot on and i thank you for taking this administration to task...*most* of the time, but i can't believe you gave them a freaking pass on DADT (see notes about health "insurance" reform capitulation regarding axe above).

Kerry Eleveld is Washington correspondent for "The Advocate," a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender news magazine. She credits the president for progress on don't ask, but says the effort on the other priorities has been lacking.

KERRY ELEVELD, washington correspondent, "The Advocate": His administration has not pushed on those. Don't ask, don't tell is still in the making. We're going to see where that goes. But -- but he has not pushed in any way, other than in some speeches.

If you look at him coming in, what he talked about, what he promised again and again, and also the majorities that he came in with, I would say he is woefully behind at this point.

what part of allowing the pentagon to commission a useless, bigoted, homophobic "survey" that is transparently designed to be used AGAINST the repeal considered "progress"? huh? what part of the compromise that requires the sign off of "fierce advocate, gates and mullen is "progress"?

23 July 2010

My last conversation with a Republican...by flyfish100

From Daily Kos: one of the best snarkalicious responses to republicant's i've EVAR seen.

Hey, Dick, thanks for sending me the email telling me all about Obama refusing to sign any congratulatory letters for Eagle Scouts and Gold Girl Scouts. I didn’t know about that one. That Snopes guy says it ain’t so, but you know how all the Snopeses lie. Anyway, you asked if I was still a liberal after all the travesties that have happened, so I figured I might as well jump the snark or whatever and tell you the whole plan right up front. You’ve been getting it piece by piece on Fox anyway, so what the hell, here’s the stuff we liberals are up to and I’m going to put it all in one place so it will make sense, you betcha’. Just read below.

The first thing we’re going to do is take away all your guns. I don’t know what we’re going to do with them, since most of us liberals don’t like guns all that much. I suppose we could melt them down into plowshares, but that sounds like a lot of work and you know how liberals feel about work. Anyway, we’re going to take away all your guns so there won’t be any trouble when our Death Panels come after you when you reach 65. You already know that Social Security is being paid out now by only three workers for one retiree and if we don’t use our Death Panels, everybody would live longer and then the actuarial guys say we’ll run out of money in 2049 instead of 2050 like we planned. Anyway, be nice to the Death Panel guys because they have a hard job, especially when they’re coming for their own grandmothers.

The next thing we’re going to do is take away all your birth certificates. Hell, if our president doesn’t have one, then no one else needs one either. That way it will make our immigration policy easier. I know it comes dangerously close to being a Republican ideal and all, but we figure if no one has a birth certificate, then the only ones who will get jobs will be those who want to work, not just those who own stuff. Those guys who own stuff are going to be taxed into oblivion so we can pay for the free healthcare we’re going to give to all the illegal immigrants who don’t have birth certificates. If you want to keep your insurance you’ll get to go to Cook County Hospital or some big place like that where they’re used to dealing with paperwork, but everybody else will have to be satisfied with Johns Hopkins or one of the Mayo places where there won’t be any paperwork, only health care.

After we fix the birth and health and death thing, we’re going to go after religion. We’re not going after all religions, just the Christian ones. The way we liberals figure it, the Christian ones have gotten too soft with all the televangels raking in the money and starting up tax-free corporations ands that “C” Street House and all, so we think it would be a good idea to help the Christian religions grow strong by persecuting them a lot the way the Romans got them to grow so fast. It will be a little tricky since so many liberals are secretly Christian, but we think we can pull it off. We’re going to ban Christmas and church basement pot-lucks and we’ll make sure the churches grow real fast by outlawing all women ministers and only allowing signs in secret. If this plan works, we can export it to the Middle East and use it on the Jews. God will thank us later.

Next, we’re going to fix education. After all, some of us think that’s where we got the word “liberal.” Others think it came from “library,” but it doesn’t matter. Instead of funding schools and deciding what’s important in education and nurturing natural talent and all, we’re going to start by giving kids lots more tests rather than trying to teach them anything. That way we’ll make them feel really stupid so we can train them to do what we want, mainly just learn how to play nice. Maybe that’s what we should do with all the guns we took away – put them in schools so some kids can learn how to play nice. Anyway, as liberals, we only care about creative stuff like music and dance and art, so the way to turn out great musicians and dancers and artists is to ban them in all schools, kind of like the way rock and roll works. I mean, look at how rock and roll grew when it was banned. The other thing we’re going to do to fix schools is make everybody join a union, including the kids. Liberals like unions, even though they’re the most god-awful things to try to control and bend to our liberal wills, seeing as how everybody gets to vote on stuff, but we think requiring unions is worth a shot (pun intended). The last thing we’re going to do to fix education is declare all schools private and give every kid a voucher for $42.00 he can use any way he wants on his education. This may sound like a Republican idea, but it’s one of our sneaky liberal ones. After we give each kid $42.00, we going to use the rest of our budget changing all the signs on all schools from “Public” to “Private.” We know there will still be good schools and bad schools depending on where a kid lives and nothing else will change including all the stuff that gets in the way of learning, but as liberals, we want their parents to think they’re giving their children a good, private education, and the $42.00 will make the kids happy because that’s all that matters to liberals.

As liberals, we’re still upset that you guys killed ACORN, which was part of our perfect plan to get everybody registered to vote, so we’re going to do a new plan. We’re calling it NUT JOB, and the only way you can register to vote is if you’re an ex-con, an illegal immigrant, or some minority without a birth certificate. How else can we liberals keep control of the country unless all our votes come from felons, illegals, and minorities? Hell, even Fox News knows that. We should thank those nice folks for helping us develop this aspect of our liberal plan.

Finally, as liberals, we hate all corporations with the possible exception of Apple. Since the Supreme Court has decided that all corporations are persons, we’re going to require them to do everything a person does. As liberals, we want everyone holding hands, so every corporation is going to be paired up with another corporation. For example, every power company is going to be paired up with a waste management company so they’ll have to learn how to play nice. Every mining company will be paired up with a private hospital or a life insurance company. Every credit card corporation will be paired up with a divorce court. (In ten years, we plan to make every court a nicety-nice family so courts will actually be just like persons as well.) Every car company will be paired up with a modeling agency so they can sell more cars. As liberals, we just want to save time and effort. Then we’re going to put a stranglehold on every business by regulating it to death. We’re going to pass really draconian measures like “You evil businessmen can’t run plants that blow up, especially in the middle of an ocean.” Here’s another one. “You can’t make products that make people sick.” Here’s my favorite anti-corporation rule to choke businesses. “We’re not going to allow you to run a business that steals money from people, gambles it away on bad bets, and then asks the government to fix you back up again.” THAT ought to really strangle business. After 65 years maximum, every corporation will be done in by one of our Death Panels the same as all persons, and its assets will go into our liberal coffers to give each kid a voucher for $42.00 to use on his education. Voila, a balanced budget, and you said it couldn’t be done.

Anyway, this is the whole liberal plan. It was pretty much secret until Fox News came along, but now I figured I might as well leak the whole thing at once. Say hello to Molly Ivins when you see her after the Death Panel comes, won’t you? God, I miss that woman. I wish she were here now.

manufactured outrage that's all about race but don't you dare say it's about race: megyn kelly edition

Kelly's obsession with phony scandal is just the latest "hint of her political outlook" | Media Matters for America

way too much to read on this fauxrage to even blockquote a teaser here.

22 July 2010

Mock, Paper, Scissors...or pimpin' the blogfather...

Mock, Paper, Scissors

because i can.

big gay post of the day...because i can.

Mel Gibson is Dating a Gay Man - Towleroad | #gay #news

BEYOND funny.

AMERICAblog News: Politico executive editor says those who attack Teabaggers as racist are creating a dangerous political climate

AMERICAblog News: Politico executive editor says those who attack Teabaggers as racist are creating a dangerous political climate

It seems the Politico has now bought into the religious right's favorite insult: You're intolerant of intolerance. Yes, we are.

this story is as long as the nose on breitbat-nocchio

Big Falsehoods: An updated guide to Andrew Breitbart's lies, smears, and distortions

Big Falsehoods: An updated guide to Andrew Breitbart's lies, smears, and distortions | Media Matters for America

our military loses another brave patriot

Pam's House Blend:: Lt Dan Choi's statement on his discharge

dan's statement:

My Statement on DADT Discharge

This morning I received notification of my honorable discharge from the army under "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." After 11 years since beginning my journey at West Point and after 17 months of serving openly as an infantry officer this is both an infuriating and painful announcement.

But my service continues. To all those veterans who have endured similar trials and injustices or prematurely ended their military service because of the unjust policy: our fight has only begun.

The true honor and dignity of service does not come from a piece of paper, a pension or paycheck, a rank or status; only an unflinching commitment to improve the lives of others can determine the nature of one's service. From the first moment we put on our nation's uniform and swore our solemn oath, we committed ourselves to fight for freedom and justice; to defend our constitution and put the needs of others before our own. This is not an oath that I intend to abandon. Doing so at such a time, or remaining silent when our family and community members are fired or punished for who they truly are would be an unequivocal moral dereliction that tarnishes the honor of the uniform and insults the meaning of America.

Lt. Dan Choi

question du jour.

Why Does Fox News Have More Power Than Any Progressive in the Country? | The Smirking Chimp:

As we can all see now, when Fox says jump, the Obama administration asks how high? (Then jumps one inch less and considers it a progressive victory). Is there anyone Obama won't fire or throw under the bus if Fox asks him to? What if they ask Obama to fire himself? Would he do it? Or would he just fire Biden and say he met them halfway?

you tell 'em, cenk!

Washington Times: not even worthy of being used as fish-wrap.

Wash. Times uses discredited allegations to accuse DOJ of "rigging" elections | Media Matters for America: "

my, oh, my...this story just gets more and more racist as the days drag on.

the best laid plans of mice & men...or...

...i promise to try to be better at this blogging thingy.

my last post was on 5/19...on 5/22 my partner, jan, had a massive heart attack and spent 12 days in ICU. a week later, he developed sepsis and spent another 3 days in icu (sepsis quickly resolved but IV antibiotics for bacteremia necessitated a full-week's stay)... *sigh*

as a result, the last couple of months have been a bit, shall we say, florence nightengallian (ok, if caribou barbie can make up words, so can i).

through it all, i've been trying to maintain my sanity by not neglecting my OCD facebook tendencies, which is where a lot of stuff that *should* have ended up here wound up...SO, thanks to teh googlez teh awesome "share" button, i'm gonna try to start filling up the dump with the stuff that i find compelling enough to click on and read every day.

y'all LOVE each other. that's not a request.

19 May 2010

i've been remiss...

(and no, that's not a new drag name).

husbear and i have been in the living hell known as a remodel of the love shack on cinder blocks.

ok, enough "don't cry for me blogentina"...what motivated me to post today was a BLISTERING (in a hella-good way) post from John Aravosis over at AMERICAblog.gay in response to Andrew Tobias ("aunt tomasina", h/t commenter "fritzrth")

i won't excerpt it here, you must go HERE and read the full delicious (and well-deserved) beyotch slap response to "tomasina" tobias (oh, fritzrth, you bring out the claws in me).

what i will post in full is this most excellent comment from GRIDLOCK (my new blog-commenter mancrush), who said:

Jesus, what a basketful of fail. Not a nice basket either.. one of those cheap dollar store easter kinds with the bits of plastic sticking out and that weird chemical smell.

Where to start?

I don't want to see Nancy Pelosi have to hand her gavel to John Boehner, or Barney Frank have to hand his to the gentleman from Alabama. I expect your readers don't, either.

I don't give a rat's ass what you want to see or not. If they have to hand their gavels over because they suck at their jobs, then too fucking bad. Listen closely Tobias: We do not care anymore if the GOP wins if the Dems are just as bad as they are. Get it? Party loyalty is fucking OVER. It's done. It's passé. People want and care about RESULTS, they do NOT care if the person has an R or a D beside their name because that crap is interchangeable.

Merely voting for someone, who has done and continues to do nothing for us, simply because they have a specific letter beside their name has gone the way of the dinosaurs. If you are unaware of this, perhaps you better consign yourself to the dustbin of history right alongside because you're just as outmoded and useless.

So even as we push for our rights - as we absolutely should - I'd urge John and others not to demonize our allies and, in so doing, discourage our community from acting in its own self-interest by failing to fight like mad to keep the right wing from gaining more power.

Demonize our allies? What allies are those, exactly? The same allies who demonize US in court, defending the indefensible DADT and DOMA even though they are NOT required to do so? Demonizing us with hideous language equating our relationships to incestuous pedophiles? Demonizing us by saying we are not deserving of full citizenship? Tobias, you giant squishy pantload, allies actually HELP YOU. They push for you. They accomplish things for you. They don't merely mouth platitudes and then turn their backs on you in your hour of need.

The Dems have done that for DECADES, Tobias. We have given our money, time, votes, blood, sweat, and many many tears and what the fuck have we gotten in return? Absolutely nothing but a knife in the back and our bodies thrown under the bus.

Right now, the Dems are just as bad as the GOP. See, you're again showing how much of an obsolete dinosaur you are.. you're still stuck on this "My team good even though they don't do anything for me, their team bad" mentality. You're an airheaded cheerleader hoping the captain of the football team marries you, but the most he's gonna do is fuck you in the back of a Camaro and then dump your pregnant ass on the curb.

And if we don't form TOO tight a circular firing squad, we will make a lot more.

How about this, Tobias:

We'll make headway on LGBT rights when the Democrats actually stand for something, grow a spine,push for legislation and don't view us as a moneypot, locked in voting demographic, or LIABILITY after the election.

Got it?
that's not just going to leave a mark...methinks it will leave a SCAR. good.

in closing, gridlock, you are SO lucky i'm a "stand by my man" kinda man!

09 May 2010

Dear Mister President, Part X...Truman was a "fierce advocate", sir.

May 7, 2010Truman Family

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President:

Tomorrow, my family and I will mark the 126th anniversary of my grandfather President Harry Truman’s birthday. There are many reasons we celebrate his life and contributions to our nation, but in particular we are proud of his decision to desegregate the U.S. Armed Forces in July 1948, which paved the way for future civil rights advancements.

It was not easy. He faced fierce opposition from inside and outside the military. Many, including Army Chief of Staff Gen. Omar Bradley, argued that mixing black and white soldiers would destroy the Army.

My grandfather, however, was appalled that African-American service members had been beaten and lynched upon their return home from fighting in World War II. They had risked their lives to defend our nation, but were denied the full rights and responsibilities of American citizenship. Implementation of his order to desegregate wasn’t easy, but it made our military stronger and our nation a brighter beacon of democracy.

There are strong parallels between the desegregation of the military and the debate over “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the law that mandates the firing of a service member based solely on his or her sexual orientation. Opponents argue that allowing openly gay and lesbian service members to serve alongside their heterosexual comrades will endanger discipline and morale.

While I have no idea where my grandfather would stand on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” I do know that he admired service and sacrifice. An estimated 66,000 gay and lesbian Marines, Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Coastguardsmen are willingly risking their lives to defend our nation, despite being treated as second class citizens.

I would hope that my grandfather would want his openly gay great-granddaughter and others like her to have the opportunity to serve the country they love with dignity and integrity.

Mr. President, as you have said many times, including in your State of the Union Address earlier this year, ending “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is the right thing to do. This year is the right time to do it.

I commend you for your commitment and hope the example of my grandfather, Harry Truman, will help you lead with the same courage and conviction to ensure the "equality of treatment and opportunity for all who serve our nation’s defense.”

Clifton Truman Daniel

06 May 2010

Dear Mister President, Part IX... willing to search for bombs for his country

May 6, 2010Anthony Moll

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

My name is Anthony Moll and I am a bisexual veteran.

I served for eight years under the discriminatory “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law that has failed our nation. I left the service just 10 weeks ago, and I can now say: this is the time, Mr. President, to push ahead and end this law.

The Senate Armed Services Committee is just a couple weeks away from holding a key vote on including repeal in the Defense budget. The vote will be close. Please, do whatever you can.

I have been proud to serve my country since joining the Army shortly after the attacks on September 11, 2001. My proudest moment was raising my hand and volunteering to serve our country in its time of need.

When I enlisted in 2002, I knew what DADT said, but nothing could prepare me for what it meant.

I had never been closeted about my sexual orientation so joining meant not only keeping quiet, but also being asked to lie to those whom already knew. While my leaders were instilling the values of honesty and integrity in me, the law in place was forcing me to do the opposite.

I knew that despite serving with distinction as a military police officer protecting fellow soldiers and their families from harm, I could face expulsion. During my service I was hand-picked as a Phoenix Raven, an Air Force program in which only a handful of soldiers are asked to participate.

While serving as a handler in the military’s working dog program, I worked with the Secret Service in detecting explosives – working to protect you.

In 2008, I was recognized as my installation’s Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year and Joint Service Member of the Year. Despite this distinction, the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law treated me as a second-class citizen.

While I excelled at every turn, this law forced me to be dishonest with my peers, my friends and my community. Our nation’s heroes should not be forced to carry the burden of serving in silence when we need our troops keenly focused on their missions.

In the meantime, I'm not sitting on the sidelines. I am now working at the Human Rights Campaign on its efforts to repeal DADT now. But advocacy alone won't change the status quo.

Mr. President, tell Congress to move on repeal. Please allow my brothers and sisters-in-arms to live up to the Army values of respect, honor and integrity. Don’t let another life be ruined by a failed policy that hurts our nation as well as our heroes.

Mr. President, lift the ban.

Former Staff Sergeant Anthony Moll
United States Army

05 May 2010

Dear Mister President, Part VIII...it's about INTEGRITY, folks, not "flaunting"

i'm trying to present these with as little commentary as possible because, really, they stand on their on. however, i was recently engaged in a "discussion" at the HuffPost about a different GLBT issue and one of the commenter's remark was "why do you people have to flaunt your orientation". the mere desire to be honest is considered "flaunting" to those that are homophobic (whether they realize they are actually homophobic or not). so, without diverging TOO FAR from the topic at hand, which is the repeal of DADT, please read today's letter (the "integrity" part i've taken the liberty of highlighting.):

May 5, 2010Laura Slattery

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

I may be stating perhaps an obvious truism: Love is confusing. As a friend and, later in life, a chaplain, I have counseled many as they tried to navigate the toughest of love‘s questions: Is this the person I should marry? Is this infatuation or love, and how can I know the difference? Should I take the relationship to the next level?

The first time I fell in love, it was just as confusing. I knew I was in love, but with a woman. It was a severe test for me. I had never been in a same-sex relationship and didn‘t see myself as gay. Yet the fact remained — I was in love.

Adding to the confusion, and the fear of the whole experience (love can be scary enough on its own!), was the fact that I had just graduated from West Point and was serving as a Second Lieutenant (2LT) at Schofield Barracks.

I had gone to West Point, to a large degree, because of the code of honor. Integrity has always been, of all the values, the one I hold most dear. My mother had graduated from UCLA and I remember clearly the day she told me how disappointed she was when she saw some of her students buying and selling papers they had written.

At that moment I thought: Nope, that is not going to happen to me. I am going to a school that matches my desire and need for honesty and integrity.

So there I was – in love with a woman – and a brand new 2LT on a small island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

The easiest thing for me to do -- and the course of action I tried -- was to encourage myself to run from love. I also considered confiding in others, but given the horror stories of investigations and removals from duty, I decided against it. The thought of the shame of being interrogated and kicked out of the Service for something I wasn‘t even sure I was (a lesbian!), was too much to bear.

In the short three years that I was on active duty, I was Airborne and Air Assault (first female Distinguished Honor Graduate). During the First Gulf War, I volunteered to go to Iraq. Due to the needs of the Army, however, I remained in the Pacific – working in the 25th Infantry Division.

The values of physical work, integrity, service and team building made the Army an almost ideal place for me. I may have continued serving if I had felt more a part of the team.

I was well-liked and had friends, but not being able to share the biggest struggle in my life (and the biggest joy) with my peers and military friends prevented me from really forming the kind of friendships that one needs to feel as an integral part of a team.

It’s the warmth and support of a team that is truly needed for real “unit cohesion” among the officer corps and with the troops. It is necessary to continue to risk life and limb for each other.

In the end we risked everything not only for our country, but for our country personified in and by our buddies, members of that integral team. Not feeling that, I resigned my commission in September of 1991.

If I can be so bold, Mr. President: we need to help soldiers, and all people really, develop healthy understandings of what it is to be human, divorced from antiquated stereotypes about gender and gender roles.

“Macho” has no place in the modern professional Army; put downs and negative comparisons to the feminine are also hurtful to the Esprit de Corps of the Forces.

I know that you have based your Administration on creating a culture of respect for difference, of developing your version of “unit cohesion” based on the values of inclusion and diversity, not in spite of them.

This is the direction that the military needs to go, and it can start by repealing DADT now.

Former First Lieutenant Laura Slattery
United States Army

04 May 2010

Dear Mister President, Part VII...a happy ending, or is it?

fortunately, this service member was able to leave the military honorably and went on to work for KBR, doing the same job he was performing in the military (but, i'm sure, making significantly more money. while that's good for him, what does this say about the ECONOMIC IMPACT of losing soldiers that would otherwise make a lifelong career in the military? ).

May 4, 2010Anthony Loverde

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

They called me “vapor” --

As a little boy, I always had an interest in serving in the U.S. military. Both my grandfathers served in the Korean conflict, an uncle in Vietnam and I soon became the first of my generation to serve, followed by my brother and a few of my cousins.

After entering the Air Force in February of 2001, I eventually was promoted to Staff Sergeant. Although successful in my job as a Precision Measurement Equipment Laboratory (PMEL) technician, I was still coming to terms of being a gay man.

I struggled with my faith that told me it was a sin. I couldn‘t talk to the Chaplain Corps because I had read about gays being discharged after coming out to a chaplain. And so, I continued to internalize my struggle with accepting myself, my faith and how I must live under “don’t ask, don’t tell.”

As my separation date approached, many of my supervisors offered career-counseling. They all said the same thing: “Tony, you need to consider re-enlisting. You are the kind of Airman that the USAF needs to retain. You have a bright future in the Air Force and it would be a great loss to see you leave.”

They often times would ask why I wanted to leave, and I always replied: “I don‘t like wearing hats.”

Eventually, I changed my mind and was able to better manage living under DADT. I applied for cross training into C-130 Loadmaster and was accepted. I figured the high ops-tempo; frequent deployments and lack of down time would make for a great environment to keep me so busy that I just wouldn‘t have time to be gay.

I thought it was a brilliant plan.

As a distinguished graduate from Loadmaster training, I quickly established myself as a top-notch troop with the 37th Airlift Squadron at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany. Within four months of my arrival, I had completed my upgrade training and was mission ready. I deployed to Ali Al Salem, Kuwait, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

But deployment can take its toll. I couldn’t lie to my fellow troops -- my friends -- anymore. I delayed coming out as to not compromise our mission and waited until we returned to Germany. At first, I ended up avoiding them as much as possible.

They nicknamed me “vapor” -- as soon as we hit the ground, I would disappear.

I didn‘t avoid them because I didn‘t like them, I avoided them because I respected them enough to not have to lie and burden them with my secret.

When I arrived in Germany, I sent an email to my First Sergeant to tell him I wanted to speak with my commander about being gay and not wanting to abide by DADT any longer. My commander said I served honorably and they would be there to support me in my transition back to civilian life.

Each one of my past supervisors from the ranks of E7 to E9 wrote character reference letters that requested my retention. My commander and First Sergeant said my character, performance and honorable service was not at question…it was merely a legal matter.

Upon my discharge, I was hired by global contractor KBR to fill a technical position in Iraq and later in Bagram, Afghanistan. I was once again working with the same Airmen I had worked for on active duty, but this time openly gay. No one had a problem.

I continue to work side by side with members of our military – each of them knowing me as a gay man -- and it has caused no impact on the mission. My contracting job for the Department of Defense now is the same job I performed when I was in uniform.

Mr. President, we need you to help repeal this law – this year -- so that my comrades continue to work in a force that retains the best and brightest based on performance rather than sexual orientation. Our men and women in the military deserve better. Listen to them, and, please, sir, do not turn your back on us.

Very Respectfully,
Former SSgt. Anthony Loverde
United States Air Force

03 May 2010

she's a little tea pot...

oh, "lady" in pink, where to start...in the words of comedian, adele givens, "she's such a f*ckin' lady".

h/t joe.my.god

Dear Mister President, Part VI... heartwrenching letter.

May 3, 2010Joseph Christopher Rocha

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

After the recent letter by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates recommended the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” be delayed, this is my plea to you on the behalf of the soldiers serving in silence to end this law now:

I never wanted anything more in my life than to be a career officer. My entire childhood I was exposed to abuse, violence, and crime. I came out of it all with a simple, yet overwhelming desire to serve. When my first attempt at getting into the Naval Academy failed, I waited restlessly until I turned eighteen. I enlisted on my birthday and set off to prove myself to the Academy. I was eager to leave the cruelty of my past and join a true family.

I knew I was gay, but it was irrelevant to me then. I was determined to join an elite team of handlers working with dogs trained to detect explosives. As I studied hard to pass exams and complete training, I was convinced that the current law would protect me. I knew that based on merit and achievement I would excel in the military.

I never told anyone I was gay. But a year and a half later while serving in the Middle East, I was tormented by my chief and fellow sailors, physically and emotionally, as they had their suspicions. The irony of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is that it protects bigots and punishes gays who comply.

Shop talk in the unit revolved around sex, either the prostitute-filled parties of days past or the escapades my comrades looked forward to. They interpreted my silence and total lack of interest as an admission of homosexuality. My higher-ups seemed to think that gave them the right to bind me to chairs, ridicule me, hose me down and lock me in a feces-filled dog kennel.

On one day in the Middle East, I was ordered by a superior to get down on my hands and knees and simulate oral sex on a person working in the kennel. We were supposed to pretend that we were in our bedroom and that the dogs were catching us in the act. Over and over, with each of the dogs in our unit, I was forced to endure this scenario.

I told no one about what I was living through. I feared that reporting the abuse would lead to an investigation into my sexuality. Frankly, as we continue to delay the repeal of this horrible law, I can’t help but wonder how many people find themselves in similar, despicable situations and remain silent. My anger today doesn’t come from the abuse, but rather from the inhumanity of a standing law that allowed for it.

Three and a half years later when the Navy started investigating claims of hazing, I had finally earned my place at the Naval Academy Preparatory School. But instead of celebration, I began to question the life of persecution, degradation, and dishonor DADT had forced on me. I questioned the institution -- our great military -- that would condone and endorse this kind of treatment of its own members. The only thing I had ever done wrong was to want the same thing my straight counterparts wanted: a brotherhood and something to stand for.

At NAPS I realized that a career of service under DADT would be a forfeiture of my basic human rights. It would be a forfeiture of basic job security, peace of mind, and meaningful relationships, particularly with my fellow straight service members whom I was forced to deceive and betray.

After completing a six-week officer candidate boot camp, my commanders said they wanted to offer me a leadership role. But after what happened in the Middle East and even the suicide of my close friend, I was mentally and emotionally depleted. And so -- with my knees buckling -- I offered my statement of resignation in writing:

"I am a homosexual. I deeply regret that my personal feelings are not compatible with Naval regulations or policy. I am proud of my service and had hoped I would be able to serve the Navy and the country for my entire career. However, the principles of honor, courage and commitment mean I must be honest with myself, courageous in my beliefs, and committed in my action. I understand that this statement will be used to end my Naval career."

They say some people are just born designed for military service. It‘s the way we are wired, and the only thing that makes us happy. For too many of us, it‘s the only family we ever had. I am sure now, more than ever, after all the loss and hardship under DADT, that all I want to do is serve as a career military officer.

Mr. President, any delay in repeal is a clear signal to our troops that their gay brothers and sisters in arms are not equal to them. I plead that you take the lead -- fight for repeal -- and allow qualified men and women to serve their country.

Very respectfully,

Joseph Christopher Rocha
Former Petty Officer Third Class, U.S. Navy

i have been pointing out to people trying to provide cover to the "fierce advocate" how unjust DADT is in both how it's carried out and the suffering it causes. today's letter is a perfect example. Petty Officer Third Class Rocha is a classic example. he was harassed and hazed because people merely THOUGHT he MIGHT be gay because he didn't engage in the "pu$$y talk" around the "shop". he couldn't report his treatment up through his chain of command for fear of sparking an investigation.

HOW MANY MORE SERVICE MEMBERS are going to be forced to SUFFER IN SILENCE before the "fierce advocate" finally step up to the plate?

02 May 2010

GetEQUAL rally 5/2...Draft Howard Dean for President 2012

speaking at today's DADT repeal rally:

Representative Gutierrez was arrested in an act of civil disobedience yesterday at an immigration reform rally.

we can't even get our GLBT representatives to display the courage to ATTEND a rally, much less get arrested for the conviction of their beliefs. SHAME ON YOU BARNEY FRANK, JARED POLIS AND TAMMY BALDWIN.

30 April 2010

Dear Mister President, Part V*

April 30, 2010Rebecca Elliot

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

I am the mother of two young children, and an Iraq war veteran. I joined up just like my dad – a retired Army officer – and my sister, who currently serves in the Guard. My brother is a reservist and has been deployed to both Iraq and Afghanistan. Two weeks ago, our family gathered together as he is leaving again for Afghanistan -- his 4th deployment. Even my husband, Jay, served as an officer in the Air Force until 2008.

Like my dad, I chose the Army. I reached the rank of Captain and was a platoon leader in the military police. I was there during the invasion of Iraq in 2003.

I had some of the best NCO's (non-commissioned officers) in the Army who could accomplish any mission. Several members of my platoon received decorations for valor during the combat phase of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

On my last day of active duty, some of my old squad leaders revealed to me that one of my former team leaders was gay. They figured it was safe to tell me, as I was leaving the Army. My first feelings on the matter were, frankly, a little surprised, followed by complete indifference.

I was surprised because I had never suspected the soldier of being gay. But then, I never really had any thoughts about her sexual orientation whatsoever.

When I reflected on it, it didn't make one bit of difference in how she performed her job or how she related to the other soldiers in the platoon. She had the respect of her squad leaders (fairly conservative men, mind you), who kept her secret and continued working with her side-by-side for years.

As an officer, I would have been bound by my position to report such “credible information” that would have led to the discharge of a great NCO. I am glad that I was never placed in the position of having to choose between one of my soldiers and enforcing this terrible law, which I feel is unfair and wrong.

Please, Mr. President – at this critical time -- do not allow those serving their country to be forced to choose between good, honorable soldiers, and upholding an unfair law.

Please, do not continue to allow gays and lesbians in the service to have to choose between hiding a part of their identity and continuing to serve their country.

Please, help Congress repeal “Don't Ask Don't Tell” now.


Former Capt. Rebecca H. Elliott
Untied States Army

*renumbered to be consistent with the number of letters published by SLDN. the dump missed posting the first letter.

28 April 2010

Dear Mister President, Part III

this is the third letter sent to our commander-in-chief from a patriot discharged under dadt.

via SLDN:

April 28, 2010

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

I was humbled to have earned the title of U.S. Marine just two years ago – my goal since I was 14 years old. But just nine weeks ago, I was informed of my discharge under the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law.

Mr. President, if I could be serving my country right now – I would be. Instead, I was fired while you were my Commander and Chief.

The stories we hear of discharged service members are becoming far too common and are based around a primitive law that we should have eliminated years ago. As this injustice continues to hurt our country, we are in desperate need of your support and leadership as we work to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

After I finished my training, I was a 20-year-old reservist. I returned to school to continue working on my undergraduate degree with hopes of becoming an officer. I wish I could tell you about my distinguished service, about stories from the war overseas, or about how being a Marine has changed my perspective on life, but I can’t.

My discharge came from the fear that my sexual orientation was going to be revealed by a third party; a group of unknown Marines who threatened to use my sexuality as a way to retaliate after a dispute in a bar. I had spoken with two fellow Marines from my unit; both of whom I trusted. They calmed me, told me that it wasn’t a big deal, and reassured me that everything was going to be fine.

I returned to drill only to find out that the two Marines – the Marines I confided in -- had mentioned it and word had reached my 1st Sergeant and Commanding Officer. They told the two Marines to submit written statements detailing everything I had told them.

When I walked in to my 1st Sergeant's office the first question out of his mouth was, "Are you gay?"

I answered honestly. The investigation was now underway.

The 1st Sergeant proceeded to tell me that there was no way he could protect my privacy in the matter, citing the “grapevine,” and having no control over what people within the unit said or did. I was told by my CO to hang tight and wait to hear from the Battalion Commander.

Ultimately I was discharged, a fate I found out only through my persistent calls and emails. My dreams of being an officer had been shattered and it felt as if the world was tumbling down on me and all I could do was step aside.

Upon earning the title of Marine, I took an oath and vowed to “defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” This enemy is a domestic one, and with your direction as Commander and Chief, this is a war in which we can be victorious.

“Semper Fidelis” is the Marine Corps motto meaning “Always Faithful.” Not only am I willing and anxious to go overseas, but I am prepared to pay the ultimate sacrifice in order to protect our freedoms.

I have remained faithful to my country; please be faithful to me.

Very Respectfully,
LCpl. Danny Hernandez,
USMC (Separated)

27 April 2010

SLDN: Letters to Obama from those impacted by DADT:

i will do my best to remember to post these every day as they are released by SLDN (Servicemembers Legal Defense Network). In case i forget, this is the link.

April 27, 2010Joan Darrah

President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

My name is Joan Darrah and I served in silence under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) for almost two decades. I share my personal story with you as we’re at a critical point in the fight to repeal this discriminatory law.

We urgently need your voice and leadership as we lobby the Armed Services Committees and the full House and Senate to end DADT this year.

I’m sure, as I do, you remember exactly where you were on September 11, 2001.

At 8:30 a.m. that day, I went to a meeting in the Pentagon. At 9:30 a.m., I left that meeting. At 9:37 a.m., American Airlines Flight 77 slammed into the Pentagon and destroyed the exact space I had left less than eight minutes earlier, killing seven of my colleagues.

On Sept. 11, 2001, I was a lesbian Navy captain who, at that time, had more than 28 years of dedicated military service. My partner, Lynne Kennedy, an openly gay reference librarian at the Library of Congress, and I had been together for more than 11 years. Each day, I went to work wondering if that would be the day I would be fired because someone had figured out I was gay.

In spite of that stress, somehow Lynne and I had learned to deal with "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"; we had made the requisite sacrifices. I had pretended to be straight and had played the games most gays in the military are all too familiar with.

But after Sept. 11 our perspective changed dramatically. In the days and weeks that followed, I went to at least seven funerals and memorial services for shipmates who had been killed in the Pentagon attack. As the numbness began to wear off, it hit me how incredibly alone Lynne would have been had I been killed.

The military is known for how it pulls together and helps people; we talk of the "military family" which is a way of saying we always look after each other, especially in times of need. But none of that support would have been available for Lynne, because under "don't ask, don't tell," she couldn't exist.

In fact, had I been killed, Lynne would have been one of the last people to know, because nowhere in my paperwork or emergency contact information had I dared to list Lynne's name. This realization caused us both to stop and reassess exactly what was most important in our lives. During that process we realized that "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was causing us to make a much bigger sacrifice than either of us had ever admitted.

Nine months later, in June 2002, I retired after 29 years in the U.S. Navy, an organization I will always love and respect.

Today, nine years after that fateful day at the Pentagon, I am now committed to doing everything I possibly can to get rid of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" so our military can finally be open to all qualified and motivated individuals who want to serve their country. This is the right step for our country, for our military, and for all gay men and lesbians.

As a veteran, and as a witness to the 14,000 men and women who have been discharged, I thank you for your bold words in your State of The Union address: “This year, I will work with Congress and our military to finally repeal the law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are. It's the right thing to do.”

I have great love and respect for our country, and I know that we will be a stronger and better country when we repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

With great respect,

Capt. Joan Darrah
United States Navy (Ret.)

tell the lies long enough and loud enough...

emphasis added:

After eight years in the White House (with Snopes.com around all that time), George W. Bush has been the subject of 47 internet rumors. After less than two years in office, Barack Obama has been the subject of 87, or nearly twice as many.

Even more telling is the relative accuracy of those stories. For Bush, 20 rumors, or 43%, are true. Only 17, or 36%, are false. The remainder are of mixed veracity (4), undetermined (4), or unclassifiable (2).

In contrast, for Obama only 8 of the 87 rumors, or 9%, are true, and a whopping 59, or 68%, are whoppers. There are 17 of mixed veracity and 3 undetermined.

15 April 2010

new rule:

i will never censor comments. debate is good. what i AM doing, however, is no longer allowing "anonymous" comments. you wanna spout right wing, tea bagger talking points, FINE....

but you'll have to own your comments.

08 April 2010

not one thin dime: REASON 593

emphasis added:

Since 1995, members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus have collectively given $6.3 million directly to members of the Blue Dog and New Democrat coalitions, according to an analysis by the Huffington Post of data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics. That's not an overwhelming sum when the average winning campaign nowadays costs more than $1 million, but it represents one-sixth of all giving from one faction within the party to another. It doesn't include the millions that progressives have given to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee -- rank-and-file members are supposed to cough up $150,000 every two years (though many miss that mark), committee chairmen $250,000 and up. The DCCC turns around and funnels that money to conservative Democrats in close races. Add to that the millions spent by organized labor and outside groups such as MoveOn.org, and it's clear that progressive donors have become major financial benefactors of the conservative Democrats who battled to undermine their agenda. "That tension exists a lot," George Miller says about the party's demand that progressives fund their intramural rivals. "That tension exists a lot. And it's real."

Democrats play it too safe, says Grijalva. "When I give my dues to the DCCC, or when you contribute to it, you have no distinction as to where your money is going to go. And it goes to front-liners and usually Blue Dogs and [they] usually vote against our issues. And that's a real frustration. And usually, if there's a progressive running, it's the last consideration in terms of support," he says.

The Blue Dog and New Democrat coalitions emerged in the 1990s in the wake of the successful Republican campaign to take control of Congress, and have continuously expanded their membership ever since. The prototypical Blue Dog comes from a socially conservative, rural district; New Democrats are more likely to represent pro-choice bankers from the suburbs. Both groups offer automatic protection against accusations that their members are too liberal.

REMEMBER: Don't Ask, Don't Give...take the pledge HERE.