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Archive for the ‘Op-Ed’ Category

Don’t SHOH8!!!

Posted by Daniel on June 26, 2013

ImageOkay, with all the revelry over today’s landmark and HISTORIC decisions from SCOTUS, there is something I, as a gay American would like to say.

I’ve already seen the hateful venom being poured out on the media and internet from those who adamantly oppose marriage equality. I get that. It’s to be expected. And no amount of talk from myself or anyone else will ever really change many of their minds. This is, after all, based on their sense of morality/beliefs. We can do nothing to sway the diehard Prop 8 and DOMA supporters, other than to go forward as examples of how these decisions in no way threaten them. Religious or political views are, in many cases, something that they can’t change. I respect that. But it’s time to live up to that religious precept of not judging. It really is time.

And to all of my fellow revelers out there…Yes, we have reason to celebrate. This has, indeed, been a long hard-fought battle. But there are two things we, as a community need to remember…First, no matter how long this battle has been, it isn’t nearly won. There is still so very far we have to go to make marriage equality the law of ALL the land…not just parts of it. So celebrate our victories, but don’t put down that banner just yet. And second, in your revelry, please try to show a little class in NOT throwing F-bombs or other vitriolic rhetoric at those who oppose marriage equality. It’s not who we are and not helpful in our cause. In every decision there are winners and losers (not meant in any negative way). Someone wins and someone loses. Today was our day to win and while it’s been a long time in coming, lets try not to sling the same hate back at those who tried to hold us down. 

On that note, major congratulations to those who fought so very hard on our behalf, to those who sacrificed so very much, and to all of us who now are one MAJOR step closer to true equality.

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Posted in GLBT, LGBT, Life, Media Matters, News, Op-Ed, Politics, Religion | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Universal Healthscare

Posted by Daniel on June 9, 2009

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You keep hearing a lot about how Congress is doing everything to make healthcare more accessible and affordable to the average citizen.  I would have said Average Joe, but that name went down the drain along with the GOP and their posterboy the plumber.

Depending on the news source of your choice, feelings and opinions from the talking heads range from “Universal Healthcare Now!!!” to “Universal Healthcare?  Why don’t you just ask Stalin to be your Gyno and Hitler to be your Mohel?”

Democrats have been rallying for UHC for decades, as have many in the medical field, as they feel many of the critical healthcare choices for their patients are now being made by some stuffy claims adjuster in an insurance office rather than by an actual doctor.  Not to mention a vast number of Democrats’ constituents can no longer afford insurance and often times have to make a hard choice between much-needed healthcare and food on the table.

The GOP, on the other hand, seems oblivious to the cries of those who are uninsured.  To the Republicans (most of them, at least), you are just asking for more government entitlements and pushing the country ever closer to the vast abyss of Socialism.  And besides, why should you get something for nothing?  Why should the government pay for your medical care?  A true Patriotic American would know this to BE Socialism, stand up for themselves, get that forth job at the drive-thru window and stop your blubbering.

To be sure, I’ve had the odd argument with friends of mine who happen to be Republicans (a few are even Washington politicians) and agree with the GOP’s version of reality.  In spite of our VAST political differences, we remain friends because we CAN discuss our differences without blowing each other up.  Several of these friends tell me there has to be something the Democrats/Obama will accept as an employee/insurance deal that will not break the backs of the rest of America or the insurance/pharmacutical companies.

Well, there IS an employee/insurance deal in the U.S. that includes unlimited doctor office visits of your choosing; covers all accidents, routine exams, physical therapy, labs and X-rays; and the like; unlimited hospital visits and stays; certain chronic care and rehab; full prescription coverage; and unlimited specialty consultations. For the employee and the entire family. There are no deductibles, no co-pays, and only a $35 monthly fee taken from an annual salary of $158 thou. Thirty-five dollars!

The group awarded this insurance looks forward to a full pension and continued coverage until their deaths. Quite a few, most in fact, were millionaires before they took on their jobs that got them such a perk. Who gets this coverage? It would be nice if it were the underprivileged or the chronically ill and debilitated or our veterans.

But no. For starters, the 535 members of the U.S. Congress, and add to that the few hundred in the upper executive and judicial branches of government. They are also members of a demographic group where seven were arrested for shoplifting, nineteen for writing bad checks, and eighty-four for drunk driving. This bunch also has an overrepresentation of felony indictments, and a few ended up serving time.

And, they are also the very same group who keeps such credible healthcare proposals and bills like John Conyers’ HR676 and Barbara Lee’s HR3000 holed up in committee, year after year, denying them access to a public hearing and floor vote. In 2005, the president and his cronies up on the Hill voted to slash $10 billion over the next decade from Medicaid. Their own medical benefits stayed intact.

Could it be they don’t believe that the rest of America should share in what they are so fortunate to have? We know better. That is the kind of care that we should all have and can afford.

I have a little problem with the GOP calling Universal Healthcare a government hand-out and telling millions of people why they don’t deserve it.

Actually, I have a HUGE problem with that.

For starters, how can ANY politician in Washington tell ANY American citizen that they should be ashamed for expecting healthcare as a government hand-out.  And how can any of them look that mother raising three kids alone (because the father skipped town) in the eye and tell her the rest of America shouldn’t be expected to pay for her or her childrens’ healthcare?

Let me remind ALL of you, again, that the politicians in Washington get their health care paid for…by you!!!  Seventy-five percent of their health care is free.  They only pay for twenty-five percent themselves, but who pays those politicians $12,500.00 per-month salary?  The government.  It’s fully funded BY the government.  And where does THAT money come from?  You…and your tax dollars.  You are paying for the insurance that those very same politicians are saying YOU DON’T DESERVE.

Ironic.

Oh, and did I forget to mention those politicians get that healthcare coverage FOR LIFE?  Wait, no I didn’t forget to mention that.

So how does it feel, America?  If you are fortunate enough right now to have medical/health care coverage, what would you think if you were but one paycheck away from losing it?  What if you did lose it?  Would you think the very government enjoying free life-long healthcare coverage was being hypocritical for not affording you the very same benefits?

Wow.  That last sentence could have switched this argument back over to the whole gay marriage debate.

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Societies Incurable Cancer

Posted by Seth on June 8, 2009

My family is very conservative and religious. Coming from a small town in West Virginia, this is the norm. One thing that is not normal is being gay. In our “progressive” society, we are taught that gays are sinners, pedophiles, deviants, and a disgusting life form that the world should be rid of. Only if it was known how many closet cases there are you see at family gatherings, the super market, and at church. Are they not considered “sinners” because they’re not out on display for people to ridicule? No. Why? Because they’re the ones hiding behind their finger pointing.

Just because you don’t understand what it’s like to be something you’re not, does not give you the right to belittle, lie, spread rumors, and OH YEAH…JUDGE! How Christian is that to cast your judgment on others while claiming to be pure and perfect. John 8:7 He who is without sin cast the first stone!  But wait…that part of the Bible we’ll just forget exists. Why? Because it impedes our gossip time. Doesn’t God speak against gossip? Oh yeah….Whoever secretly slanders his neighbor, him I will destroy. Psalms 101:5

I have been told I “pick and choose what I want to believe” the Bible. Honestly, yes I do. Everyone does! How can you not? There are so many contradictions and implications in the Bible, it is impossible to follow it word by word. Conservatives and the religious claim they don’t, but they do! We have NUTS in this world that say “God hates fags!” or “AIDS is a gift from God!” Both are lies and cries of fear instilled in people by our politicians and evangelicals that “accept donations”. It’s not gays and lesbians that are making this country fail, it’s ignorance from people like Fred Phelps that preach hate. Look at Al Qaeda! How long is it going to take before conservative extremists start suicide missions into AIDS clinics and gay owned businesses? Oh wait…it’s already happening!

Why?! How did America go from “…Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” to “God Hates Fags!”

Homosexuality is NOT a choice! Who would choose to risk the love of their family, their reputation, friends, taking a chance on being beaten to death in the woods, or raped in a school lockerroom, risk their faith for fear that what they were raised to believe is wrong is “infecting” you. Why would someone choose to go through discrimination? It’s like saying “Hey! Wouldn’t it be fun to go back in time and be a slave working in fields being beaten by a whip?” No! That’s just as ignorant as “choosing” to be gay. I’ve been asked before, “How do you know you’re gay?” All I can say is, “How do you know you’re straight?” You don’t and neither do I. It’s not something that can be explained. Why should I have to explain it. I’m not a threat to anyone. I’m not out to “ruin” a family or “take their morals”. I don’t threaten your marriage, divorce threatens your marriage. The divorce rate is now at a staggering 50%! What is the #1 cause? Finances! Not gays!

Another “defense” from anti-gay groups is Sodom and Gomorrah. Don’t throw that in my face. God destroyed the cities because they wanted to gay rape two angels? I don’t think so. I’m pretty sure the cities were destroyed because…“Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen.” Ezekiel 16:48-50. Though I do NOT believe the cities were destroyed because of gays, I do believe there was fire and brimstone falling from the sky. I found it very fascinating when I watched the History Channel, yes I am nerdy, and they were running a documentary on the destruction of the cities. It was not so much a story in the Bible to teach people a lesson, but it was a pretty accurate recording of a geological event. I know it’s very hard for some people to connect the Bible to science, but it is possible. The documentary investigates the possibility that a volcanic eruption occurred at the time this story took place. It is very insightful and fascinating! I highly recommend it!

It saddens me to know that not only my family, but so many others are not willing to move outside their comfort zones to just think! Most of them are just afraid to be proven wrong about what they were raised to believe. It’s almost funny to me. I was always taught to pray for wisdom and learn. I remember his first sermon when our church moved to a new location. He was having trouble getting some of the church members to follow him to the new building. I’m can’t remember exactly why, but I believe it was simply because of the name on the sign outside. Anyway, he got most, if not all, the members to come to the first Sunday service. I remember his first sermons title was “Moving Outside Your Comfort Zone”. I don’t remember what he said in his sermon, but I love the title. I can almost say I kind of live by it. My thoughts are, how am I supposed to grow as a person or a Christian if I don’t have the willingness to learn or see someones point of view. I have to see other peoples points of view. It keeps me humble.

This is just something I’ve been dealing with for a while. I don’t understand how we are all supposed to grow as a race if we live by the instructions of people 2000 years ago. Gays didn’t threaten cultures back then and they don’t now. I just want to ask everyone how do gays and lesbians threaten your religion or your life? Gays aren’t going to convert you or steal your religion. No one can make you do something you don’t want to do. We’re not going to make you go gay and you’re not going to make us go straight. So many people are afraid gays are going to take God and morals away from them. Well, all I can say to that is I’m a gay Christian and you can’t take that from me.

Posted in Because You Count, Common Sense, Family, Friends, GLBT, Life, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Politics, Religion, Today's Rant | 2 Comments »

Our Right – Our Fight – Our Support

Posted by Daniel on June 2, 2009

Fresno Rally - 05/30/2009
Say what you will about the GLBT community…we are nothing if not bound (some literally) and determined to get our fair share of the Apple Pie.

And we have decided to throw all of our support behind those who continue to battle the narrow-minded religious right.

I refer to the issue of Marriage and the fact that the GLBT community is STILL banned from this CIVIL RIGHT here in California.

And stop griping at me about how marriage is all about the religious ceremony.

Buuuulllll Shit!!!

It’s also about all of those nifty little FEDERAL/STATE benefits you  are automatically granted as soon as a marriage certificate is filed or issued.  Again, the church does not give those benefits, the State and Federal government does.  And we want those same rights.

You can argue all you want about the sanctity of marriage (in a church), but we are tired of arguing about the civil side of it.  As a matter of fact, we won’t be asking any more for our civil rights to be granted.  Instead, we are demanding the same rights you take for granted every day.

And please stop telling us that gays would make a mockery of marriage.  You seem to have no problem with Britney Spears getting married to some fool in Vegas, only to file for an annulment just hours later (after they’d sobered up).  And what about those lame TV shows “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette”.  Where are your minions with their picket signs for these travesties?  I never hear you people bitching about the sanctity of marriage when it comes to the STAGGERING divorce rate, either.

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This past weekend, a rally was held right here in Fresno, CA called “Meet In The Middle” that drew thousands of people from across California as well as from many places around the country.  It was held downtown in front of City Hall on one very hot day.

There was first a 14.5 mile protest walk that started in Selma, CA and ended five hours later in downtown Fresno.  Seth and I arrived downtown and took part in a rally that showed us this fight for our EQUAL civil rights is FAR from over.  I have not seen so many good people fired up over civil rights since the 60’s/70’s.  true, I was still a very young kid back then, but I remember much about those times.

Here are some of the images from this past Saturday…

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Posted in Common Sense, GLBT, Life, Media Matters, News, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Politics, Religion | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Lovers of Hate Crimes

Posted by Daniel on April 30, 2009

As the House of Representatives debated an expansion of hate crimes legislation, Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.) took the rhetoric to a new level, claiming that those who say Matthew Shepard was murdered in Wyoming for being gay are perpetrating a “hoax” on the American people.

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By the way…is it just me or does this broad look an awful lot like the self-hating homo on Will & Grace…Beverly Leslie???
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Just a thought…

“I also would like to point out that there was a bill — the hate crimes bill that’s called the Matthew Shepard bill is named after a very unfortunate incident that happened where a young man was killed, but we know that that young man was killed in the commitment of a robbery. It wasn’t because he was gay. This — the bill was named for him, hate crimes bill was named for him, but it’s really a hoax that that continues to be used as an excuse for passing these bills,” said Foxx.

A Foxx spokesman didn’t immediately return any calls from the media. The Matthew Shepard “hoax” notion is a popular meme on right-wing blogs.

The Matthew Shepard Foundation is dedicated to reducing hate crimes.

The New York Times reported in 1998: “According to the local police and prosecutors, the two men lured Mr. Shepard out of a bar by saying they were gay. Then, the Laramie police say, the pair kidnapped Mr. Shepard, pistol-whipped him with a .357 Magnum, and left him tied to a ranch fence for 18 hours until a passing bicyclist spotted Mr. Shepard, who was unconscious.”

“She should be ashamed,” said Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), himself a victim of a hate crime during the struggle for civil rights. “That is unreal, unbelievable. The law enforcement people and almost every reasonable person I know believes he was murdered because he was gay.”

UPDATE: Matthew Shepard’s mother was in the gallery when Foxx aired her theory.

“Matthew Shepard’s mother was in the gallery yesterday and I believe she was back today — so I’m sorry she had to be around to hear it,” Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) said. “It’s an urban myth… And I’d tell her that man did land on the moon and the moon wasn’t made out of green cheese.”

We have uploaded the video of Foxx’s statement. WATCH:

Another example of the twisted lies and homophobia in this blessed land of ours is the following.  A prime example of a phobia as well as pandering.

Congressman-CW-Bill-Yung

A friend of mine wrote to C.W. Bill Young regarding a pending federal hate crimes bill (H.R.  1913 AKA The Mathew Shephard Act) that would expand the 1969 federal hate-crime law to include crimes motivated by the victim’s actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability. I’ve posted the Congressman’s response in its entirety after the jump. I found it offensive both intellectually and morally.

Another pandering lying homophobe.

Another pandering lying homophobe.

Congressman Young explains that he does not support the Mathew Shepard Act because under such  a law “criminals who kill a homosexual, transvestite or transsexual could be punished more harshly than criminals who kill a police officer, a member of the military or any other person.” “I fundamentally believe, ” he continues, ”that we should instead value all life equally.”

While the Congressman purports to be making an Equal Protection argument, his juxtaposition of “homosexual, transvestite or transsexual” with “police officer, a member of the military or any other person” belies the real logic at work here. This is an appeal to homphobia, plain and simple. Dressing it up in a tenuous Constitutional argument doesn’t make it any more acceptable.

If you’d like to contact Congressman Young and give him a few valid reasons to support or not support it, you can reach him at (202) 225-5961.

Posted in Common Sense, GLBT, Media Matters, News, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Politics, Religion, Today's Rant | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

We the People…

Posted by Daniel on February 28, 2009

You know, I’ve heard a lot from readers over the past year or so about how I’ve let up too much on writing on the topic of politics.

Truth is that I, like many others, was so burned out by all the campaigns, mud-slinging, lies and pandering (by BOTH parties) that even I, “Mr. Asshole Liberal Jaded Opinion Man” (true story, one of our readers actually called me that) got burned out on it all.

Don’t get me wrong, Seth and I still follow what’s going on politically every day and have many one-on-one discussions about it all.  Just because I haven’t written about it lately doesn’t mean I’ve fallen out of the loop.

Quite the contrary, actually.

As a matter of fact, the shabby, whiney and – quite frankly – UN-Christian actions of the GOP (especially this week at the CPAC rally) have awakend this humble scribe.  And it sucks for them that I awoke on the wrong side of the bed…and there’s no coffee, so excuse me if this gets a little cranky at times.

I remember about eight years ago when we were all being hammered over the head by the GOP with words like, “He’s your President, and to NOT support him is un-American.” (Sean Hannity), and “Democrats should get over it.  A Republican was elected President and it’s time to move on.  He’s YOUR President.”  (Ann Coulter)

Forgive me, Rebecca, for what I’m about to say…but it’s time…

No matter how you slice it…no matter how far they will bend over to kiss the asses of their base…Republicans are the worst hypocrites.

Case in point:

Morality talk show host, Laura Schesinger told people they were slime for being unfaithful or untruthful in marriage and then tried to lie as part of a cover up regarding provocative nude pictures that were taken of her while she was married to one man by the man she was having an affair with.

I know there are plenty of Democrats you could point to with equally repulsive examples, (Joe Lieberman)(notice how the first three letters in his last name are L-I-E???) but as the GOP so loves to say, “Let’s just talk about the here and now.”

The GOP seems lost these days.  You can’t tune to any channel these days without a story being ran about how hard they are working to try to get back to their core values (whatever the hell THOSE were).  And while they are all scrambling to regain political footing after a well-deserved trouncing last November, the irony is how much more damage they are doing to themselves TRYING to pull their collective shit together.

They are doing their best to put as much political distance as they possibly can between themselves and FORMER-President George Bush, but at the same time, they are looking to such ilk as Sarah Palin, Joe-the-Plumber, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter and RNC Chairman Michael Steele for salvation?

Honestly, folks, it was these pandering liars and MANY other water-carriers LIKE them that got you where you are today.  These are the same people who think it’s just a funny harmless joke to have PRESIDENT Obama’s picture on a food stamp.  Or think it’s funny to see a cartoon of a dead monkey shot by police that references PRESIDENT Obama.  Or say that there won’t be an Easter Egg hunt at the White House this year, and underline the statement with a picture of a watermelon patch on the White House lawn.

And you STILL bitch about how Democrats are STILL seething about the fact that George Bush “won” the election in 2000???

Tell you what, GOP…I’ll stop bitching about 2000 if you (and EVERYONE who sympathizes WITH you) will stop characterizing the Obama’s as monkeys, apes or ANY other stereotype.

And stop lying to me and others by saying you detest such comparisons.  We no longer buy that song and dance.  Just because you SAY you object to that sort of mudslinging means nothing. If you really MEANT to stop your supporters from such shameless and childish words and acts, you’d actually have mentioned it at your little CPAC jamboree…even ONCE!!!!

“Classic remorse, as all the moralists are agreed, is a most undesirable sentiment. If you have behaved badly, repent, make what amends you can and address yourself to the task of behaving better next time. On no account brood over your wrongdoing. ROLLING IN THE MUCK IS NOT THE BEST WAY OF GETTING CLEAN.” – – – – – Aldous Huxley

I have a sense of humor.  Believe me when I tell you that I know the value of a good laugh.  Ask anyone I know.  Your brand of so-called humor, however, is in no way funny.  Because those cartoons, jokes (I fucking HATE those anti-Obama emails I’m getting, even from family, so stifle that shit!!!), etc. are not meant to bring a smile to people’s face.  Instead they are intended to incite hate, anger and to perpetuate racism.

I don’t find ANYTHING funny about THAT shit.  And more people than you care to admit think the same way as I do.

Whether you like them or not.  Whether you respect them or not.  Whether you VOTED for him or NOT…

President Barack Obama is, in fact, YOUR PRESIDENT!!

Just as you insisted we have and show respect for that office when George Bush was in it (because he was THE PRESIDENT), so you now must put up or shut up.  Walk the walk.  Eat that crow.

Because the bottom line here is that you aren’t fooling anyone ANYMORE with pretty words geared towards whatever adoring crowds you hand-pick.  This country and those of us who live in it are actually PAYING ATTENTION to what you and your party are saying and doing.

You can’t shuck and jive us with magic tricks meant to sheild us from mushroom clouds with mere duct tape and plastic sheeting.

We can no longer be distracted from your true hate of free-thinking Americans by dangling something shiny in front of us.

(this goes double for the Democrats now that they have the power)

I’m not asking you to lay kisses on the Obama’s feet.  I AM asking that you show the same respect to a First Family that you insisted on for the previous eight years.

Because those very people to whom you are showing such an utter UN-American disrespect, in fact ARE…

Of The People...

Of The People...

By The People...

By The People...

...and FOR The People

...and FOR The People

Posted in Common Sense, Media Matters, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Politics, Today's Rant | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

I Shall Miss-Underestimate Him When He’s Gone

Posted by Daniel on January 9, 2009

You Elected This Person

It’s not every day you’ll hear me say this…mostly because I never thought I would say this.  But now that we are a mere ten days away from the end of the Bush era, I started thinking about all the reasons I truly will miss him.

One half second later, I could only come up with one.

The Bushisms.  I know many of you have heard of these little gems…but you’d be surprised to know how many people never really paid that close of attention to the words – twisted and mangled as they were – that came out of his mouth each and every day.

So, in order to edumacate the masses on the treasure that was Bush 43, as well as to honor the man hisself, I present the latest in the looooooong list of Bush mis-speechifyin’.

(Note:  I know this goes on an on and on and on…but this guys’ words are like fucking peanuts or potato chips…you just can’t stop eating them up!!! Also, please forgive the skipping around on the dates of these, I’ve stored so many of these into so many documents on my PC that i just posted them as I opened them.)

“That’s called, ‘A Charge To Keep,’ based upon a religious hymn. The hymn talks about serving God. The president’s job is never to promote a religion.”—Showing German newspaper reporter Kai Diekmann the Oval Office, Washington, D.C., May 5, 2006

“And so, in my State of the—my State of the Union—or state—my speech to the nation, whatever you want to call it, speech to the nation—I asked Americans to give 4,000 years—4,000 hours over the next—the rest of your life—of service to America. That’s what I asked—4,000 hours.” —Bridgeport, Conn., April 9, 2002

“I want to thank the dozens of welfare to work stories, the actual examples of people who made the firm and solemn commitment to work hard to embetter themselves.”—Washington, D.C., April 18, 2002 (Thanks to George Dupper.)

“The public education system in America is one of the most important foundations of our democracy. After all, it is where children from all over America learn to be responsible citizens, and learn to have the skills necessary to take advantage of our fantastic opportunistic society.”—Santa Clara, Calif., May 1, 2002

“We ended the rule of one of history’s worst tyrants, and in so doing, we not only freed the American people, we made our own people more secure.”—Crawford, Texas, May 3, 2003 (Thanks to Tony Marciniec.)

“Now, there are some who would like to rewrite history—revisionist historians is what I like to call them.”—Elizabeth, N.J., June 16, 2003

“I’ll be long gone before some smart person ever figures out what happened inside this Oval Office.”—Washington, D.C., May 12, 2008

“And so the fact that they purchased the machine meant somebody had to make the machine. And when somebody makes a machine, it means there’s jobs at the machine-making place.”—visiting the Silverado Cable Co., Mesa, Ariz., May 27, 2008

“And I, unfortunately, have been to too many disasters as president.”—discussing flooding in the Midwest, Washington, D.C., June 17, 2008

“The German asparagus are fabulous.”—Meseberg, Germany, June 11, 2008

“One of the things important about history is to remember the true history.”—Washington, D.C., June 6, 2008

“Throughout our history, the words of the Declaration have inspired immigrants from around the world to set sail to our shores. These immigrants have helped transform 13 small colonies into a great and growing nation of more than 300 people.”—Charlottesville, Va., July 4, 2008

“Should the Iranian regime—do they have the sovereign right to have civilian nuclear power? So, like, if I were you, that’s what I’d ask me. And the answer is, yes, they do.”—Speaking to reporters in Washington, D.C., July 2, 2008

“I think it was in the Rose Garden where I issued this brilliant statement: If I had a magic wand —but the president doesn’t have a magic wand. You just can’t say, ‘low gas.’ “—Washington D.C., July 15, 2008

“I remember meeting a mother of a child who was abducted by the North Koreans right here in the Oval Office.”—Washington, D.C., June 26, 2008

“And they have no disregard for human life.”—Describing the brutality of Afghan fighters, Washington, D.C., July 15, 2008

“But oftentimes I’m asked: Why? Why do you care what happens outside of America?”—Washington, D.C., June 26, 2008

“We’re fixing to go down to Galveston and obviously are going to see a devastated part of this fantastic state.”—Houston, Sept. 16, 2008

“This thaw—took a while to thaw, it’s going to take a while to unthaw.”—Alexandria, La., Oct. 20, 2008

“I want to share with you an interesting program—for two reasons, one, it’s interesting, and two, my wife thought of it—or has actually been involved with it; she didn’t think of it. But she thought of it for this speech.”—Washington D.C., Oct. 21, 2008, discussing PlayPumps International, which improves access to clean water in Africa.

“Yesterday, you made note of my—the lack of my talent when it came to dancing. But nevertheless, I want you to know I danced with joy. And no question Liberia has gone through very difficult times.”—Speaking with the president of Liberia, Washington, D.C., Oct. 22, 2008

“I’ve been in the Bible every day since I’ve been the president.”—Washington, D.C., Nov. 12, 2008

“I’ve abandoned free market principles to save the free market system.”—Washington, D.C., Dec. 16, 2008

“Oftentimes people ask me, ‘Why is it that you’re so focused on helping the hungry and diseased in strange parts of the world?’ “—Washington, D.C., April 18, 2008

“It would be a mistake for the United States Senate to allow any kind of human cloning to come out of that chamber.”—Washington, D.C., April 10, 2002

“My attitude about the world changed, and I know the attitude about the world from a lot of folks here in America’s attitude changed.”—Discussing the Sept. 11 attacks, Fairfax, Va., April 10, 2007 (Thanks to David Stanford.)

“I said to her, make sure the rug says ‘optimistic person comes to work.’ “—describing his instructions to the first lady in choosing a rug for the Oval Office, Tipp City, Ohio, April 19, 2007

“There are some similarities, of course—death is terrible.”—on comparisons between the wars in Vietnam and Iraq, Tipp City, Ohio, April 19, 2007

“My job is a job to make decisions. I’m a decision—if the job description were, what do you do—it’s decision maker.”—Tipp City, Ohio, April 19, 2007

“And so, what Gen. Petraeus is saying, some early signs, still dangerous, but give me—give my chance a plan to work.”—in an interview with Charlie Rose, April 24, 2007 (Thanks to Dana Stevens.)

“One of my concerns is that the health care not be as good as it can possibly be.”—On benefits provided to military personnel, Tipp City, Ohio, April 19, 2007

“If you’ve got a chicken factory, a chicken-plucking factory, or whatever you call them, you know what I’m talking about.”—discussing the sorts of jobs many illegal immigrant workers perform, Tipp City, Ohio, April 19, 2007

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Posted in Just For Fun, Life, Media Matters, News, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Politics, Religion | Leave a Comment »

Could It Really Be That Easy?

Posted by Daniel on December 23, 2008

It’s been a while since my last rant on the issue, but it’s in my head…so brace yourselves.

If I hear one more preacher, teacher, puntiff or person in the medical field pontificate on the issue of “choosing” to be gay, I am going to open a vein and flood this planet with glitter and confetti.  I swear I will.

My Religion Trumps Everything

My Religion Trumps Everything

Why is it that we just can’t seem to agree to disagree about this?  No matter how it’s argued, you just can’t seem to change my mind any more than I can change yours.  So where does that leave us?  As supposedly learned adults, one would think we could declare détente and try to coexist peacefully in spite of such a difference.

No.  That just isn’t good enough for some people.  Forget about the whole marriage issue, let’s just talk here about who people really are at their core.  I am no more capable of being heterosexual than you are of being gay.  Sorry to put that so simplistically (for those who write me with such accusations), but it really is just that…well, simple.

It doesn’t matter how many times I tell you that I didn’t choose to be gay.  No, that’s just not good enough for you.  You have to continue ramming down my throat that I could “be normal” if I really wanted to.

What the fuck is “normal” anyway?  And who are you to tell me your kind of normal is the norm?  What, you base that on percentages and the bible?

I have nothing but respect for those of you who ascribe to the preachings of that book, even though I think you pick and choose too much from it, which I think is your only empowerment to judge others.  because if you all truly followed that book WORD-FOR-WORD, you’d be far more hell-bound than I.

But I’m actually not here to pick a fight with the good religious folks out there.  What I’m here to rant about today is those who think people who are genuinely different can just flip a switch and *poof*, insta-hetro.

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There ain’t no On/Off switch.  And stop fooling yourselves into thinking there is.  And for those poor schmucks out there who are members of clubs and organizations that claim to have been “cured” of their “gayness”, I have this to say…

Good luck with therapy, assholes.

I’ve read the books and articles written by so-called “ex-gays”.  More than half of them turned out to be written by people who were never gay, but to help promote gay-hate and the stereotype that gays can be “cured”, hose to make money by ACTING as if they were once gay and then saw the light.

This effort only serves to bolster the gay-hating fanatics arguement.

And for thse who truly are.were gay but then wanted to change, I have yet to read of any long-term success story.  Oh sure, you think you’re cured now, but why would you marry one of the lesbians from your group?  If you were so sure you were cured, why not try actually breeding with a straight woman?  Tell the truth, if you marry a lesbian (and absolutely NO offence meant towards the lesbian community), you get to play it safe because neither of you has to have sex.  Convenient.

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No, Virginia, there IS no Off switch in life.  We are as we were made.  In the image of whomever or whatever.  You are straight.  I am not.  You are religious.  I am not.  That isn’t about to change, not now, not never.

And the more you keep trying to “convert” those who are gay into cookie-cutter images of yourselves, the more disappointed you’re going to be.

And really I’d like to know just what it is you think it is about you that I should emulate.  What, your capacity to love (only the “right” people)?  Your ability to love your neighbors (so long as they share your skin color, religion, social standing, etc.)?  Your tolerance?  Your education?  Your belief that science is devil-worshipng and nature is dirty living porn?

Am I supposed to be like you so that I will love war?  What’s the point in loving war if being gay keeps me out of the military?

In this festive holiday season, just leave me be.  Stop emailing hateful messages that tell me to convert.

Even though that isn’t possible, even if it were, I just don’t like the menu options of things I should convert to.

Posted in Common Sense, GLBT, Life, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Religion, Today's Rant | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

Count Me Out

Posted by Daniel on December 2, 2008

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I recently received an email from a good friend in Atlanta asking me to join in the “National Gay Day Off”. It is a means of protesting California’s passing of Proposition 8, as well as several other bans on gay-this or gay-that.

For those of you who didn’t know (or care) about the National Gay Day Off, it’s a day where all gays are supposed to call in sick for work and also spend no money. This day is scheduled for Wednesday, December 10.

I see a few things with this that don’t quite jibe well with me.

First off, I (and many others, I imagine) have too many bills to pay to take a day off to indulge in something like this. I understand the concept of not spending money in protest and yadda yadda, but I still need to earn the money for the next day and for the day after that. I don’t think calling off of work on December 10th will help me in the way that educating my peers and family on the issue might. In the current economy, if you can afford such a day off, congrats and more power to you. I, however, don’t personally know anyone who can afford it.

Secondly, the “Great American Boycott” (a day that Hispanics were supposed to not go into work in the United States (to draw attention to immigration and related issues) generated a lot of news coverage and not much else. The biggest impacts were felt in companies that proactively gave workers the day off and had to adjust scheduling or production accordingly.

This, my friends, falls under the category of “nifty idea” but faulty implementation, especially if one compares it to the aforementioned.

Personally, why would I punish my employer, co-workers, and the businesses that I patronize (all of which, in my universe, are gay friendly in the ways meaningful to me) in order to draw attention to those that aren’t? There’s got to be a better way… it’s called peaceful march, peaceful protest, and just playing being right and getting the word out. Strong-arm tactics (which this is) are, IMO, wholly inappropriate and, in the bigger picture, ineffective.

Third, you are going to be hard pressed to get gays everywhere NOT to shop. That’s like expecting Bush not to lie for a day…or Palin to stay off camera for a day…it just ain’t done and would only cause mass hissy-steria.

Now, I do have to admit, if this could be done nation wide and have the desired effect, I think there would be some huge ripples in the American pond. After all, December 10th is right when a lot of holiday parties begin, and who would give the party-hosting ladies their blow-out’s then?

A party without cater waiters? Just can’t be done. with no one serving/cleaning, the guests would all walk around with that “somebody moved my food dish” look on their faces (like a puppy gets). They would all be too confused, lose their minds and start throwing their own poo at one another.

Basically, if the concept of staying home and not working or shopping (even if for only one day) could work, yes, I do think it would have a great effect and would serve as quite the eye-opener to many. The problem is that many people could be inadvertently “outed” at their jobs. Not to mention those still serving in the military. What are they supposed to do? I’m not a supporter of outing people. There are still far too many employers (LIKE THE MILITARY) who will fire someone on the spot (and make up a more legal-sounding reason) for being gay. Don’t fool yourselves…this country may have elected it’s first African-American President (and it’s about fucking time!!!), but America hasn’t come THAT far with gays.

So I will be working on the 10th. I can’t afford to take that day off. But I won’t be shopping that day…I can’t afford THAT either. But I will be pulling for those of you who do take off and don’t shop.

Posted in Bad Advice Meant Well, Friends, GLBT, Life, Media Matters, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Politics, Work | Tagged: , , , | 4 Comments »

A Waste Of Who’s Time?

Posted by Daniel on November 20, 2008

PhotobucketResumes…these are basically defined as a brief summary of the education, experience, accomplishments, and other professional qualifications of a person, such as that prepared by one applying for a job.

It can arguably be said that I have, in the past six months, submitted well over 1500 resumes since moving here to California.

Everyday, I seem to get a dozen or so emails from CareerBuilder.com, Monster.com, etc., telling me new ways to maximize my resumes’ exposure while at the same time dazzling the prospective employers. And the links they provide take me to books that are for sale written to tell you how to – and how not to write a resume.

I noticed several things about these how-to books that pissed me off…

1. The cost.

The average price of these pearls of wisdom was around $39.00. Seems to me that the people writing these worthless tomes never had to write their own resumes…not when they are raking in $39.00 from those of us who actually want to work and get desperate enough to buy this shit.

2. The fact that these how-to books look more like encyclopedias.

The shortest book on how to write a resume that I came across was eighty-four pages long. Another (written by the very same author) was 480 pages. Both of these, as well as all the others I’ve read, use the same sentence as their main theme, “Keep your resume as brief as possible, and never make it more than one page long.” Great, it took you 480 pages to tell me that. Enjoy my money, asshole.

3. A necessity to “dazzle” the prospective employers.

According to these so-called experts, not only should we strive to keep our blathering down to one page, but we are also supposed to make eyes bulge with glee when they see this page. And they have some very creative ways for us to dazzle a prospective interviewer…

  1. Professional Fonts
  2. Line Spacing
  3. Giving your resume a “name”.
  4. Don’t write about your past.
  5. Write a brief personal history. (so much for #4)
  6. If you have gaps in employment…fix them!!!

There are many other ways you are supposed to implement to “dazzle” employers, but, ironically, I can’t fit them all on one page.

Here’s my question…Who’s time is really being wasted with resumes?

These books tell you to not waste the prospective interviewers time with a lengthy or “unprofessional” resume. Keep it brief and yet it should drip with syrup and confetti (the dazzling part?). Employers or personnel officers may look through hundreds of applications and may spend only a few seconds reviewing your resume. When I think of that, I think I’ve just plain been wasting my time.

I used to be an HR director and one of my responsibilities was to advertise for available positions, field applications and resumes, and to conduct the interviews, as well as doing the ultimate hiring.

In performing the entire hiring process – from advertising to actual hiring – I can honestly say that resume review is done differently by every person in the hiring position. I know a lot of other folks who had the same kind of position in their respective companies as I did, and in our many conversations, all of them had very different methods of resume review and vastly different criteria in applicants.

I, for one, never used the length (or brevity) of someone’s resume as a factor in their qualifications. Neither was I expecting to be dazzled – or offended – by the applicants choice of font!!! When I needed to fill a position, I just used my brain. I knew what position needed to be filled, which required me to understand every requirement an employee would need to fill that position.

When hiring, I look over the application. Then read through the resume (yeah, sometimes it does require a little patience, but that’s part of my job, so I deal with it!!). If the candidate has the experience required to fill this position, that person goes into the pile I have set aside for an interview. When the time comes, and after the initial interviews, I go through that ‘further review‘ pile and whittle down the candidates to the top three who I think merit a second interview. By this time, I’ve already run the necessary background checks that are required by law and the company for hiring.

After the second interview of the three finalists, I submit my findings and notes to the supervisor of the hiring department for their consideration. A final decision, and subsequent hiring phone call, are made thereafter.

But that’s just me, I guess.  As I said, most HR folks have their own determining methods in their hiring process.

I suppose my point here is that you know your skills and your experience(s) better than anyone. You want the job, obviously, but you also have to use common sense when writing your resume. If you are applying for a Staff Accountant position, make sure your resume highlights all pertinent information that shows you can understand and do that job.

Don’t write a novel, but also don’t short-sell your experience. There are those employers/interviewers who want to know something about you that you might have left off that resume because you listened to some pontificating asshole (like me) who said, “Less is more.”

Oh, and just so you know, I’ve always thought “Cover Letters” were a complete waste of time. Done right, your resume should be able to tell my just how much you can bring to our company. I think requiring an added sheet (really? aren’t we supposed to keep this shit brief??) is a waste of paper.

And so are those books on how to/not to write a resume.

Remember, while you are trying to find ways not to waste the time of a prospective employer/interviewer, don’t forget that you also shouldn’t waste your time trying to condense a lifetime of experience into one paragraph with pretty font.

Bottom line, any employer/interviewer worth their salary will do a little research (read resumes) if they don’t want to miss out on hiring that perfect employee.

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Posted in Bad Advice Meant Well, Common Sense, Op-Ed, Our Writings, Today's Rant, Work | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »