Itzhak Perlman says no to NC

Violinist Itzhak Perlman - Facebook

Violinist Itzhak Perlman – Facebook

Thursday afternoon the Grammy Award-winning musician made the announcement on Facebook:

“As my fans know, I have spent a lifetime advocating against discrimination towards those with physical disabilities and have been a vocal advocate for treating all people equally,” he wrote. “As such, after great consideration, I have decided to cancel my May 18th concert in North Carolina with the North Carolina Symphony as a stand against House Bill 2.”

He continued, “As Attorney General Loretta Lynch recently stated, HB2 ‘is about a great deal more than just bathrooms. [It] is about the dignity and respect we accord our fellow citizens.’ I couldn’t agree more and will look forward to returning to North Carolina when this discriminatory law is repealed.”

Full Story Here.


Courtesy Thirteen years before he took office as president of the United States, James Abram Garfield predicted the extinction of the American Indian.

Thirteen years before he took office as president of the United States, James Abram Garfield predicted the extinction of the American Indian.

Thirteen years before he took office as president of the United States, James Abram Garfield predicted the extinction of the American Indian.

“The race of the red men will… before many generations be remembered only as a strange, weird, dreamlike specter, which once passed before the eyes of men, but had departed forever,” he said in 1868 when, as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, he proposed a bill that would transfer Indian Affairs from the Interior Department to the War Department.

The Indians had unpronounceable names, crude clothing and habits of “roaming,” Garfield said. He called it a “mockery… for the representatives of the great Government of the United States to sit down in a wigwam and make treaties with a lot of painted and half naked savages.”


Garfield spoke despairingly about the future of the Indians, believing nothing could be done to stop “the passage of that sad race down to the oblivion to which a larger part of them seem to be so certainly tending.” Perhaps, he concluded, it was best to let the Indians slip into extinction “as quietly and humanely as possible.”

Full Story Here.

The Rich Forks

#RichForks (The Beginning of an exhibition touring our unequal world)

#RichForks (The Beginning of an exhibition touring our unequal world)


Endless high quality food and drink, silver service and luxury hotel rooms adorn the daily routines of the idle rich these days more than ever. It’s no surprise that this occurs when only 62 people own as much wealth as the poorest 3.6 billion people on this planet. Luxury items including 5/6 star hotel food and wine is always at the finger tips of the extremely wealthy. And they don’t lift a finger when it comes to washing the silverware, setting the tables or cooking the exorbitantly priced food. Thousands of hotel workers (waiters, chefs, stewards/dishwashers, laundry workers) bend over backwards, working ridiculous hours to bring food and wine to the mouths of the world’s extremely wealthy. And many of these workers can barely afford housing, let alone food on a daily basis. But this daily routine of the world’s obscenely rich – having access to free, high quality cuisine while attending corporate functions,  is hidden from many of us.

What if artefacts from this political/cultural activity of the wealthy class were taken from under their noses and displayed to the public? This exhibition is a result of that exact task. Taking something back. Re-appropriating a tiny piece of the vast amount of wealth stolen from us (recall the trillions of public money used to bailout the banks post GFC?). So, this is an exhibition for the people, by people. It’s a small gesture, but symbolically and perhaps artistically, it can mean the world.

Luxury dinner forks have been collected over a 15 year period, complete with the saliva and food stains of their users, and will be displayed in public/community spaces.

This exhibition at Footscray Community Arts Centre’s Gabriel Gallery will be the first in a series of #RichFork exhibitions touring the world in the years to come. It is no accident that the venues chosen for this touring series are venues ostensibly run by local communities, labour groups and/or publicly funded spaces.

There is more about Van T. Rudd’s current work here.

And with this post, I’ll be leaving you for the day, I have to go into town to see my neurologist. Have fun, and don’t burn the blog down while I’m gone. Stealing forks is okay.

The Angry, Confused, Bigoted Responses To Transgender Student Inclusion.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R)

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R)

Zack Ford at Think Progress has a state by state roundup of responses to the new federal education guidelines.

On Friday, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Department of Education (DOE) told the country’s schools that they should be making sure transgender students have equal access to all educational opportunities, including using facilities that match their gender identities. If they don’t, they put themselves at risk of losing federal funding.

While the debate continues to play out in North Carolina in the courts, the response nationwide, particularly among Republican governors, was not pretty.

The article has responses from Kentucky, Utah, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Idaho, Mississippi, Michigan, Arkansas, Texas, Alabama, Indiana, aaaaand the Catholic Church.

Full Story Here.

Atheists are just pre-Christians.

(Photo: Screenshot/KSFY-TV) Atheist billboards in Sioux City, South Dakota.

(Photo: Screenshot/KSFY-TV)
Atheist billboards in Sioux City, South Dakota.

Pastor Jeff Hayes of Faith Temple Church responded to 20 atheist-themed billboards in his city that display messages such as “God didn’t create man” and “prayer doesn’t work,” by telling local news station KOTA-TV that atheists who criticize religion might just be “pre-Christian people” who need prayer to experience a personal spiritual awakening.

“I think it’s good for Christians to have a reaction and we can be negative toward the Free Thinkers but I think we should just pray for them and just believe that, wow if there is a God, is He big enough to reveal Himself to them,” Hayes added.

“Pre-Christian”. Is this like “Pre-Owned” and “Pre-Born”?

Full Story Here.


Via Twitter.

Via Twitter.

The computer-hacking activist collective known as Anonymous claims to have shut down several North Carolina government websites in protest of the state’s anti-LGBT law, House Bill 2.

The organization announced its action in a series of tweets over the weekend and today, tagging the group’s name, #OpLGBT, in several posts:



However, while many of those domains the tweets listed remain inaccessible, some major sites, such as those of the governor and the state legislature, are online and functioning. “All of our state government websites are operating as normal,” a spokesman told CNN Money.

Anonymous and other “hacktivists” intend to keep up the pressure on the state over HB 2, which invalidates all LGBT-inclusive municipal antidiscrimination laws, prevents cities and counties from enacting new ones, and bars transgender people from using the restrooms and locker rooms, in government buildings, that match their gender identity.

Full Story Here.

LGBTTTQQIA Plus Another A People.

Joe Mavretic (N.C. Spin/screen grab)

Joe Mavretic (N.C. Spin/screen grab)

…“I’m a little unhappy with the four of you,” the former Speaker sarcastically told his fellow panel members. “Because clearly you’re not with it.”

“What we’re talking about here is not four letters of the alphabet. We’re talking about L-G-B-T-T-T-Q-Q-I-A plus another A if you want to be an ally!”

“Are you going to explain that?” host Tom Campbell asked.

Mavretic revealed that the letters stood for “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, two-spirited, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual.”

“Now, here’s the issue,” he continued. “What we’re really talking about is the body vs. the brain. We’re talking about that issue — we’re talking about biology against psychology. And we’re also entering the me su arena of politics where narcissism is prevalent. People want to be me. ‘I want this for me.’ I’ve not heard anybody talk about the common good since this first hit the headlines.”

Biology against psychology? So the brain isn’t biological in nature now? “Common good”. I’m getting this full body slump weariness whenever I see or hear the word common. Rapidly becoming one of my least favourite words.

“It’s all about me!” Mavretic opined. “Well, can a white person want to be a black person and then get minority contracts? Can a female want to be a male and go to the beach and and not have to wear a top like males do?”

According to Mavretic, the United States was “bordering on being the most narcissistic-me-individually-oriented culture on the planet.”

Mmmhmmm, and you certainly are trying to get attention for your particular views, right, Joe? That might be considered an all about me! thing. I’m pretty sure that transgender people existing turning into some sort of ohmygods topless on the beach is strictly a Joe thing. I don’t know of anyone else, anywhere, who is concerned about that. Or even thought that. Right. Let’s see if we can get back to something like transgender people are like everyone else, and deserve the same rights. . .

“I think it’s offensive to call them narcissists when they’re just trying to live their life,” Fitzsimon said.

“Well, I’ll tell you what,” Mavretic shot back angrily. “We are not politically correct anymore and I can call it what I want to call it. And that’s what free speech is all about.”

I guess we can’t. I think we can safely say that Joe “I can call it what I want to call it” Mavretic is on the self-centered side. Full story here.

Why Christians Will Win the Transgender Debate.

Image courtesy of Dennis Hlynsky via Flickr creative commons -

Image courtesy of Dennis Hlynsky via Flickr creative commons –

Yesterday, I posted about an article: Why Christians Will Lose the Transgender Debate. There’s been a response as to why the author of that article is wrong.

…Unfortunately, Merritt is quite wrong in arguing that “conservative Christians will lose the transgender debate.”
Some might be guilty of doing this, just as some Christians focus on theology while ignoring people, but everyone I speak to about the transgender issues is focused on people rather than ideology.

How so?

First, they are focused on the people affected by transgender activism, such as the many schoolchildren who are being negatively affected and whose cases are now coming to public attention, or the women who have been sexually abused in the past and have now become unintended victims of transgender activism. [That link goes to a youtube video made by Alliance Defending Freedom, and if you don’t like being outraged first thing in the morning, or any other time, skip it.]

Do these people not matter?

Do we overlook other victims – including innocent little children – because they are not part of the LGBT spectrum?


The reality is that transgender activists expect us to embrace someone’s self-identification absent any scientific evidence, meaning that Bruce Jenner is now to be recognized as Caitlyn simply because that is how he now self-identifies. And should his biology and chromosomes affirm that he is a man, we are still expected to embrace him as a woman.

Genitals matter! Wait, no they don’t, chromosomes matter!

In that sense, it is transgender activists who sometimes ignore science and who open the door to the very dangerous slope of “perception is reality.” (For a striking example, see my video on the man who became a woman then became a mythical dragon.)


As for the stance we must take as followers of Jesus, as I’ve said over and again, we can reach out to those who are marginalized without sacrificing our children on the altar of political correctness and radical LGBT activism.

I invited Jonathan Merritt in joining me on the front lines as, together, we resist radical LGBT activism while reaching out to LGBT individuals with compassion.

The whole article is riddled with the worst misinformation and bigotry.

19th Century Photo Studio Built in 1:12 Scale.



Absolutely astonishing work by Ali Alamedy.

Turkey-based artist Ali Alamedy had been building miniature sets for seven years when he came across documentation of Charles Miner’s photography studio from the early 1900s. Inspired by the way sunlight was used to illuminate studio sets, Alamedy decided to build his own version in 1:12 scale. The project took him over nine months, using hundreds of feet of wood, and building more than 100 miniature objects designed specifically to fit the era.

Due to few images being available of photography studios at that time, Alamedy read extensively to figure out what tools, techniques, styles, and colors were used within the studios (all images were in black and white). One of the hardest challenges during the completion of the model was the camera, as each fold in the bellow in real life is just 3 cm. The final 1:12 scale camera has 124 2 mm folds that were all meticulously created by hand.

Via Colossal Art, where there are many more photos of Alamedy’s work.