Headline Muse 2/24

In the story, below, that I’m linking,
Santorum’s support is found shrinking;
Has he lost his appeal?
Could it be (if it’s real)
Just a sign that the voters are thinking?

Headline: Santorum lead shrinking in national poll

When your popularity is based mostly on the fact that you are not Mitt Romney, the more people find out about what you actually are, the less support you get. Rick Santorum, it will surprise none of you to hear, is a despicable excuse for a vertebrate biped. If pressed to say something nice about him, I will admit that he loves his family and puts his daughter’s health ahead of his campaigning. But he puts his campaigning above the health of every other woman in the country, so take this as a very provisional compliment. To know Rick Santorum is to despise him, and nationwide, the voters are getting to know Rick Santorum.

Nebraska Ghosts! (This Way To The Egress!)

They heard the museum was haunted! Undaunted,
They brought their equipment, to see for themselves.
Recorders and other such get-up were set up
Midst Indian artifacts filling the shelves
You might, given that’s what your choice is, hear voices
In fuzzy recordings and that sort of thing
The noises they’ve heard may be ghostly, but mostly
They’re steps on the way to the sound of “ka-ching”

“If tourists will hit the museum to see ‘em
We’ll say we saw ghosts, and we caught them on tape!
The suckers will love it! They’ll line up, and sign up
For annual passes, their mouths all agape!
You want what we claim we’ve collected inspected?
The button to pay us securely is here!”
They’ll show you—but first, take your money. It’s funny;
Their ghosts are transparent; their motives are clear

more: [Read more…]

Lenoir City Update

Krystal will not be pushing the issue, it seems.

She has no hard feelings toward the school, and recognizes their position in trying to control what is published.

I note one big difference between Krystal and Jessica Ahlquist (of Cranston, RI): Krystal takes this stand with the support, but not the agreement, of her parents. This, of course, puts both Krystal and her parents into a different situation than the Ahlquists; I cannot fault them if Krystal chooses not to pursue legal remedies.

But time will tell on that–she does have the support of civil libertarian organizations if she chooses to take that path, and Lenoir City would be smart to revisit their policies and actions in advance of such a choice. Krystal has pointed out a problem, and if they are smart, the school board will address it before Krystal or another student decides to take it to court.

Lenoir City HS Refuses To Publish Atheist Student Editorial

“We would let you print your letter
But we think it would be better
If it didn’t point out places where our policies are wrong;
We’re not happy with your saying
School board meetings start with praying
And there’s indirect coercion—can’t we all just get along?”

First amendment violation
Seems a hobby in this nation
When the Christians in majority think they can set the rules
They so often act unfairly
And it’s pointed out so rarely
But it seems as clear as Krystal, there’s a problem in the schools.

With authorities denying
Publication, they are trying
To prevent a conflagration, and disruption, so they say;
Though their motives may be noble
There’s this “internet” that’s global
And the schools are going to learn that it’s a brave new world today.

Rant follows: [Read more…]

Headline Muse, 2/22

When a bill that would force a physician
To rape patients, against own volition,
Hits the national news
And we see voters’ views
Watch the governor change his position!

Headline: Governor of Virginia Calls for Changes in Abortion Bill

Gov. Bob McDonnell of Virginia reversed his position on Wednesday on a bill requiring women to have an ultrasound before undergoing an abortion, saying he wanted changes in the measure before he would sign it.

The bill had drawn intense national attention, with women’s health groups holding a large protest over the weekend and spoofs aired on left-leaning comedy news shows.

So…When the mob is running you out of town, get out in front with a baton and pretend you are leading the parade.

Ok, full disclosure–I’m watching/listening to the GOP debate, and watching them sprint to the ultra-extreme-right, while putting this post together. I want a questioner to ask them about lynching; at the rate they are going, they’ll gladly lap one another (to the cheers of the audience) in the race to the infrared spectrum.

Today’s headline does not claim tat McDonnell is doing a damned thing for the right reasons. McDonnell saw the weathervane spinning, and hopes his current stand gets him A) donations and B) re-elected. Period. Fucking period.

(now the debate is between fences and double fences on the Mexican border. I expect the double fence plans come from Berlin; they did a good job with that. Tip: invest in razor wire, machine guns and tear gas.)

Signing off now, before my frontal lobe bleeds and shorts out my keyboard…

Religion, Politics, and Strange Bedfellows

No, wait–it’s actually good news this time!

I’m used to religious groups disagreeing with one another. I get really nervous when they start agreeing, cos it usually means an attempt at consolidating political power. And there’s nothing that gets a quarrelsome group to unite like a common enemy. And if you’re talking about uniting religious groups, who’s left to band against? So, yeah, it makes me nervous when 14 different religious organizations all sign on to one statement. (continues…) [Read more…]

Cranston Cliff-Notes

What with the decision not to appeal, and now some articles reporting on the scholarship Jessica will be getting (the brainchild of The Friendly Atheist, and proudly supported by Freethought Blogs), a whole new crop of people are hearing about the Cranston Banner for, apparently, the first time. Or if they have known about it, they haven’t learned much, because they are using the same ignorant arguments they have from the beginning.

And they are continuing to threaten. I read a fresh comment today specifying that someone should knock some of Jessica’s teeth out. So, yeah, this has been a fixture of Cranston commentary since at least October. But in the minds of some, who are more concerned with her soul than her safety, there are sadder things about the Banner case… like Jessica’s atheism.

Why couldn’t she just look the other way? After all, only six words out of the whole banner are objectionable! Besides, since atheists don’t believe in God, they shouldn’t be offended by any mention of Him! And it’s not fair to shove atheism down our throats! Hey, when she wins, all that money will say “In God We Trust” on it!

Though some Cranston Christians supported her, for the most part it was “Praise the Lord and start the persecution“. Christians were, it seems, a highly oppressed majority. It was clearly Jessica’s fault that the school had been violating the constitution, and with God on their side, they would surely win the appeal!

Her own representative called Jessica an “evil little thing”. Local businesses refused to deliver her flowers.

The Christian mob wanted their own religion to have a special, favored status, and to be able to punish Jessica for her atheism. On the other side of the world, we saw what that looks like. And we saw that it can happen to Christians when they are in the minority. The only way to be certain that you will not be mistreated when you are in the minority, is to keep those laws safe when you are in the majority. It’s a matter of mutual respect, and of maintaining that wall.

It’s a lesson Cranston is learning the hard way. And one which, as evidenced by their comments, some people are not learning at all.

(and I have learned that I had no idea how much I had written on this one thing!)

A Rapist Named Virginia

If a person named Virginia
Tried to stick an object in ya
In a manner you objected to, we’d have to call it rape.
When this horrid violation
Is an act of legislation,
Then not only is it legal, it’s a crime if you escape.

It’s as if the state has told you
“If you struggle, we’ll just hold you,
So you might as well surrender, though it’s all against your will
We’re not looking to dissuade you
From your choice, as we invade you;
It’s the price we pay for safety… and we’re sending you the bill.”

Rant follows (trigger warning) [Read more…]