Posts Tagged ‘bigots’
What is it about bike shares that so enrages conservatives? They’re just bikes! That people share! And yet the New York Post has a new story every day about the endless disasters that Citi Bike has brought upon the helpless populace of New York.
Dorothy Rabinowitz of The Wall Street Journal called the Bloomberg administration “totalitarian” for … encouraging the riding of bikes, we guess…
But, in a way, the depth of conservative animosity for a bike-share program makes perfect sense. Because, as the Venn diagram above indicates, Citi Bike finds itself at the very nexus of five different things that conservatives hate:
Mayor Bloomberg: Conservatives hate Mayor Bloomberg, a cosmopolitan billionaire who thinks he knows better than them and has the right to control their lives. Bloomberg wants to take their guns, and, even worse, he wants to take their enormous sodas…
Healthy: Bike riding is healthy, especially when the alternative is sitting in a cab, train, or bus. But conservatives hate being told to be healthy. Look at how much scorn they have for Michelle Obama simply for encouraging kids to exercise more and eat more vegetables. As Americans, it is our God-given right to eat as much crap as we want, pass our medical bills onto the government, and then yell at the government for spending too much money on health care…
Sharing: So central to the concept of bike shares, they put it right in the name. But conservatives hate sharing — tax dollars, calamari, doesn’t matter…
Environmental: Bike are also good for the environment. This will please you if you think the environment actually needs help. But if you think carbon emissions and climate change are conspiracies (like 58 percent of Republicans) perpetrated by Al Gore and a handful of scientists at the University of East Anglia, then bikes are just lies on wheels…
Vaguely French: French people ride bikes, right? Like, more than other people? There’s something vaguely French about this whole thing. Doesn’t sit well.
Sounds about right to me. I don’t see a single issue here that hasn’t been raised by some AM radio nutball preacher or pundit.
In one of their most dramatic choices in a century, local leaders of the Boy Scouts of America voted Thursday to ease a divisive ban and allow openly gay boys to be accepted into the nation’s leading youth organization.
Gay adults will remain barred from serving as Scout leaders.
Of the local Scout leaders voting at their annual meeting in Texas, more than 60 percent supported the proposal.
Casting ballots were about 1,400 voting members of BSA’s National Council who were attending their annual meeting at a conference center not far from BSA headquarters in suburban Dallas.
The vote will not end the wrenching debate over the Scouts’ membership policy, and it could trigger defections among those on the losing side…
Of course. Would you expect bigots to accept democracy – along with civil rights?
The BSA’s overall “traditional youth membership” – Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and Venturers – is now about 2.6 million, compared with more than 4 million in peak years of the past. It also has about 1 million adult leaders and volunteers.
Of the more than 100,000 Scouting units in the U.S., 70 percent are chartered by religious institutions.
Those include liberal churches opposed to any ban on gays, but some of the largest sponsors are relatively conservative denominations that have previously supported the broad ban – notably the Roman Catholic Church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Southern Baptist churches.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced in April that it was satisfied with new proposal, and the National Catholic Committee on Scouting did not oppose it.
The frustration felt by those who oppose full civil rights for all Americans is nothing new. The nation listened to their whine and breast-beating over accepting non-whites, witnessed the transformation of local chapters of one or another organization or institution into something designed to maintain racial purity. Some of the same will take place over sexual orientation, now.
And, then, time and tide will continue to roll forward over the reactionaries who always think half-measures are all they can bear.
U.S. restrictions on same-sex marriage are making it harder for Wall Street to attract some foreign workers, said executives including R. Martin Chavez, who leads equities trading for Goldman Sachs…
Chavez, a 49-year-old U.S. citizen, cited his own story as an example of the potential hurdles those restrictions create, saying they almost forced him to leave the country. He married his partner last year, which proved to be problematic when they tried to replace his partner’s student visa.
“We got married in the state of New York,” Chavez said at the event, which was held at Goldman Sachs’s Manhattan headquarters. “You’d think this would be a wonderful thing, except we ended up in this crazed paradox where because we were married in the state of New York, that created the presumption of his attempt to immigrate, which meant he would not be eligible for a student F-1 visa.”
Because of the Defense of Marriage Act, a 1996 law that the U.S. Supreme Court is reviewing, the marriage doesn’t give Chavez’s partner the right to immigrate or obtain a green card permitting him to live and work in the country.
After several months of interviews and paperwork, Chavez’s husband received a new visa. In the meantime, Chavez said he spoke to Goldman Sachs executives about moving his role to London if his husband wasn’t allowed back into the U.S. He also considered retiring from his job running the largest equity- trading business in the world and moving abroad…
While the issue affects only a limited number of employees, it can result in significant costs for companies that have to move workers out of the U.S. or in lost productivity from dealing with an employee’s or partner’s immigration status, Alisa Seminara, associate general counsel for Citigroup said at the event…
The immigration issues will probably be remedied if the Supreme Court strikes down DOMA, which defines marriage as a heterosexual union and prohibits gay spouses from claiming federal benefits, Rachel Tiven at Immigration Equality said. The court may rule on the case by the end of June. Activists are also pushing for inclusion of same-sex rights in an immigration bill being debated in Congress…
Overdue. But, then, that’s always been the lot of civil rights in America.
The most reactionary elements in our land seem to spend a significant portion of their waking life working to manipulate Congress – and state and local government – into denying full civil rights for ordinary citizens feared and hated by cowards and bigots.
An Italian restaurant with Italian words in the menu – how dangerous!
They are known as the language police, a unit within the regional Quebec government that seeks to protect French from the rising tide of English. It deploys inspectors to rein in recidivist anglophones, take on big corporate transgressors such as Guess, the Gap and Costco and conduct spot checks to follow up thousands of public complaints.
Now, however, zealots in the Office québécois de la langue française…may have gone a step too far in picking a fight with an Italian restaurant known for its celebrity clientele including Bono, Rihanna, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jerry Seinfeld and Robert De Niro.
After a five-month investigation into an anonymous complaint, Massimo Lecas received a letter from the board telling him that his establishment, Buonanotte, had broken the law by including the words “pasta” on the menu and “bottiglia”, the Italian word for bottle, instead of the French word bouteille.
Outraged, Lecas posted the letter for 2,500 of his Facebook friends to see. In doing so, he unleashed a political tempest over one of the most sensitive topics up for debate in the province. The outcry has forced the Quebec government to rein in its language inspectors, ensure exceptions to the rules are made for ethnic food and restaurant menus and order a review of how it handles public complaints. Anglophones and the many ethnic communities that call Quebec home are now celebrating a victory. French-language advocates and Quebec separatists, meanwhile, see signs of a campaign by a cabal of English-speakers in Quebec and across Canada to undercut what they view as the only tool to ensure that French thrives.
Lecas, who was born and raised in Canada’s second-largest city, and who also speaks French, does not hide his linguistic frustrations. But he says this episode is no sinister plot. Rather, it is a perfect storm propelled by social media.
“I think that when they circled the word pasta that was the sensitive spot,” he said. “It wasn’t an anglophone thing so right away the francophones jumped in [to support the restaurant] because it was an Italian word…”
In the meantime, Quebec premier Pauline Marois is introducing a bill to apply French-first laws to small companies and to prevent towns and cities where the majority of the population is francophone from also offering services in English.
Her government’s rallying cry that French remains threatened so long as it is surrounded by the cacophony of English voices in North America is undiminished. And in a period of severe cutbacks, Quebec’s recent budget included one notable increase: the yearly allotment for the language police.
The populist side of nationalism is no less elitist than bigoted. Extending the ban on English creeping in from the surroundings to every other language is logical only in the mind of politicians whose career is built upon Francophone fears. It also demeans the growth of education and understanding natural to people who feel they have something to contribute to the larger world.
The Parti Québécois is demonstrating its willingness to perpetrate the subjugation it says it fears.
Lt.Col Heather Mack, son Carson, Ashley Broadway
Ashley Broadway and other same-sex military spouses do not have military ID cards or family member status, because the Department of Defense doesn’t recognize same-sex marriage. Ashley, like other same-sex military spouses, doesn’t receive military healthcare, moving or housing allowances or other similar benefits of being a military spouse.
Even so, she said the response she received when she first asked to join the Association of Bragg Officers Spouses was the first real discrimination she had experienced. The club’s leadership took two months to deliberate and first offered Ashley a guest membership, because she lacks a military ID. The club has since changed its policy…
Last week was an eventful one for Ashley and her Army wife, Lt. Col. Heather Mack. On Wednesday Heather gave birth to their second child, a girl. The couple also has a 2-year-old son.
On Friday, Ashley was named Military Spouse of the Year for Fort Bragg, N.C. The online competition, sponsored by Military Spouse Magazine, is part of a nationwide contest and is not affiliated with the Association of Bragg Officers Spouses.
Just after Ashley’s win was announced, the Fort Bragg spouses club publicly invited Ashley to join as a full member. They released a revised membership policy that includes full membership for all legally married military spouses, even those who do not have ID cards, namely same-sex spouses like Ashley.
“I have responded to them that I hope to join real soon. Of course, just having had our daughter, family comes first … I hope to attend an event and get involved starting in March…”
Much of this crappy behavior towards spouses in same-sex couples in the military is “excused” in court by DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act. Hopefully the Supreme Court – even packed with Republicans – will recognize a responsibility to bring constitutional law in line with 21st Century social understanding.
Though our populace has grown to greater understanding of the real world, Congress stands alongside state governments incapable of rationale lawmaking. So, the next decision lies with our judiciary.
The budget battles rocking the capital have exposed a deepening fault line within an already fractured Republican Party: the divide between the GOP’s solid Southern base and the rest of the country.
That regional split became evident when members of the House of Representatives cast votes last week on a budget deal designed to avoid massive tax hikes and spending cuts: Almost 90% of Southern Republicans voted against the “fiscal-cliff” compromise. At the same time, a majority of Republican representatives from outside the South supported the deal, which was approved in large part because of overwhelming Democratic support.
The GOP’s geographic schisms burst anew after House Speaker John A. Boehner canceled an expected vote on a $60-billion disaster relief package for victims of Superstorm Sandy.
Rep. Peter T. King accused his party of “cavalier disregard” toward New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, a potential 2016 GOP presidential contender, lashed out at what he called the “toxic internal politics” of his party’s House majority, noting that Republicans had speedily approved support for storm relief in “Louisiana, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Missouri, Alabama…”
The image projected by the battles in the House — the only part of the federal government controlled by Republicans — could influence public attitudes toward the GOP and its candidates heading into the 2014 midterm elections and the 2016 presidential contest.
In particular, the South’s preeminence could pose challenges to national GOP efforts to broaden the party’s appeal on social and cultural issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage…
…One of the first acts of the Republican leadership is to continue their $1.7 million defense of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, despite the defeat of one of its champions, former Rep. Dan Lungren, R-Sacramento.
DOMA is under Supreme Court review, and as we know, the Obama administration abandoned its DOMA defense nearly a year ago, after which it was taken up by House Republicans.
…Republicans buried the DOMA provision in their rules package, making no mention of it publicly. That left the field wide open to Democrats to hammer away.
Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill said the GOP “fiscal responsibility mantra does not extend to their efforts to stand firmly on the wrong side of the future. Republicans will take the extraordinary measure of including an authorization of their efforts to defend DOMA in the Rules of the House of Representatives and by doing so, continue to spend taxpayer funds, already adding up to $1.7 million, in their attempts to defend this shameful law in federal courts and the Supreme Court.”
Rep. Mike Honda, D-San Jose, lambasted Republicans for not allowing an up-or-down majority vote on a stand-alone DOMA defense, instead of hiding it in the rules package.
“On this defining issue of our time, House Republicans are continuing to fight for discrimination and using the Rules package to make it seem as if all Members of the House feel that way”…
These creeps always say they campaigned on Jobs, Jobs, Jobs – turn their back on jobs to continue a pattern of bigotry and class loyalty, introducing bills to squash Obamacare, spending taxpayer dollars on DOMA, ignoring their reduction in ranks to continue the Kool Aid Party mantra.
Log Cabin Republicans have to be world leaders in masochism, continuing to support politicians who characterize them as a Satanic abomination. I guess that for a tiny corner of the Gay community, class still counts for more than liberty.
Just as the fiscal-cliff negotiations are drawing to a close, a fresh controversy is brewing in the House of Representatives after Republican leadership decided they will not vote during the 112th Congress on a bill to provide supplemental aid to victims of Superstorm Sandy.
Both Republicans and Democrats lashed out at Republican leadership for what one Republican called a “personal betrayal,” after it was decided that the bill would not be considered until the 113th Congress, which convenes at noon Thursday.
“For the Speaker to just walk out is inexcusable,” Rep. Peter King (R-NY-Long Island) told reporters. “It’s wrong, and I’m saying that as a member of the Republican Party.”
A spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) said in a short statement: “The Speaker is committed to getting this bill passed this month.”
That assurance was not enough for the members of districts affected by Sandy.
After Hurricane Katrina, Congress had special funds on the way to aid victims of that disaster within 10 days. Though the White House had a bill passed by the Senate just as quickly, House Republicans have refused to allow a vote on aid for Hurricane Sandy victims and communities for over 9 weeks, now.
“I feel it is a personal betrayal,” Rep. Michael Grimm (R-NY-Staten Island) said. “But I think more importantly, when you parse out all the politics, the people of this country that have been devastated are looking at this as a betrayal by the Congress and by the nation, and that is just untenable and unforgivable…”
The House had originally planned to consider a two-step bill that would start with $27 billion in supplemental aid, but also include an amendment worth an additional $33 billion. The bill had been split to allow conservative Republicans to vote for a base level of additional aid, but not the entire package, which many Republicans said did not entirely go to those affected by Sandy.
The Senate passed a bill on Dec. 28 by a vote of 61-33 that would provide $60.2 billion in additional aid to victims of Superstorm Sandy. During that vote 12 Republicans voted for the measure, but only after a replacement amendment that would have stripped $35 billion from the bill failed to pass.
An emotional King went so far Wednesday to urge residents of New York and New Jersey to halt donations to his own party in the House as a result of the chamber’s inaction.
“I’m saying right now, anyone from New York or New Jersey who contributes one penny to congressional Republicans is out of their minds,” he said on Fox News. “Because what they did last night was put a knife in the back of New Yorkers and New Jerseyans. It was an absolute disgrace.”
Folks have to realize the Party-formerly-known-as-Republican does not consider itself a party of all the people, not even a party of all the nation. Just as they embrace only policies and ideology befitting the bigots of the Confederate States of America, they come down on questions of aid to fellow Americans in times of need as unnecessary. Physically as well as philosophically, they are the new party of the Confederacy.
The Supreme Court has seized center stage in a historic social policy debate over same-sex marriage by agreeing to review the validity under the Constitution of a federal law defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman.
In an order, the court also announced that it would consider a challenge to California’s ban on gay marriage, known as Proposition 8, which voters narrowly approved in 2008.
Same-sex marriage is a hot-button issue in a country where 31 of the 50 states have passed constitutional amendments banning it while Washington, D.C., and nine states have legalized it, three of them on Election Day last month.
Yet even where it is legal, married same-sex couples do not qualify for a host of federal benefits because the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, passed by Congress, only recognizes marriages between a man and a woman.
Gays and lesbians married under state laws have filed suits challenging their denial of such benefits as Social Security survivor payments and the right to file joint federal tax returns. They argue the provision, known as Section 3, violates equal protection provisions of the U.S. Constitution.
The court could follow the model of some lower courts and rule narrowly…or it could demonstrate the courage of previous courts and come down on the side of equal civil rights for all Americans, recognize a right to marriage equality.
My concerns are obvious, the same experienced by any American confronting the political theater our legal system has become. There is no shortage of bigots and fools who would apply the heart of constitutional freedoms only to a limited number of citizens. Egalitarian law applied to all citizens doesn’t occur to many who base their beliefs on superstition instead of science, privilege instead of equal opportunity.
I have more confidence in the legal flunkies of the Right who sit on the Supreme Court bench being more concerned – for once – with their image and reputation in future legal histories than with bending to the sound and fury of their class. It would be even more pleasing to see them stand up for the spirit of our constitution.
Here’s a predictable achievement of the Republican anti-Obama campaign – American prejudice against Blacks increased
Racial attitudes have not improved in the four years since the United States elected its first black president, an Associated Press poll finds, as a slight majority of Americans now express prejudice toward blacks whether they recognize those feelings or not…
Racial prejudice has increased slightly since 2008 whether those feelings were measured using questions that explicitly asked respondents about racist attitudes, or through an experimental test that measured implicit views toward race without asking questions about that topic directly.
In all, 51 percent of Americans now express explicit anti-black attitudes, compared with 48 percent in a similar 2008 survey. When measured by an implicit racial attitudes test, the number of Americans with anti-black sentiments jumped to 56 percent, up from 49 percent during the last presidential election. In both tests, the share of Americans expressing pro-black attitudes fell…
Most Americans expressed anti-Hispanic sentiments, too. In an AP survey done in 2011, 52 percent of non-Hispanic whites expressed anti-Hispanic attitudes. That figure rose to 57 percent in the implicit test. The survey on Hispanics had no past data for comparison…
Neither am I.
Obama has tread cautiously on the subject of race, but many African-Americans have talked openly about perceived antagonism toward them since Obama took office. As evidence, they point to events involving police brutality or cite bumper stickers, cartoons and protest posters that mock the president as a lion or a monkey, or lynch him in effigy…
The poll finds that racial prejudice is not limited to one group of partisans. Although Republicans were more likely than Democrats to express racial prejudice in the questions measuring explicit racism (79 percent among Republicans compared with 32 percent among Democrats), the implicit test found little difference between the two parties. That test showed a majority of both Democrats and Republicans held anti-black feelings (55 percent of Democrats and 64 percent of Republicans), as did about half of political independents (49 percent).
As predictable a result of bigotry and hate as has been the anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant, xenophobia engendered by Republican politics since 9/11.
Put the blame for corruption on victims. Just as the range of ethnicities and religions among the fallen at 9/11 extended well beyond white bread-America, the range of victims of the Bush Era oversight failure – our Great Recession – falls disproportionately on the least equipped economic segment of our population. Non-whites, Hispanic folks, Black people get it in the neck the most from disappeared jobs and opportunity.
Keep on rocking in the Free World!