Thought

If school just kept going and going I’d be in the 32nd grade this year.   Wow! 😀

Freedom of Religion/Anti-Gay Church

A church that has become infamous for performing anti-gay protests at military funerals has been ordered to pay $10.9 million to the father of an American Marine killed in Iraq. The church had been sued for intentional infliction of emotional distress, invasion of privacy, and defamation. Church members had shown up to the funeral carrying signs such as “God Hates Fags” and “Thank God for IEDs”. They argue that God is visiting His punishment on America for being tolerant of homosexuals.

The church founder, Fred Phelps, is appealing the ruling claiming that the central issue is one of religious freedom. That claim is gay and here is why: protesting at military funerals is not and has never been a tenet (not even a minor one) of the Christian religion, or any other religion for that matter. If he and his church members were being prevented from fasting, praying, performing communion, or baptizing themselves or others, he would have a case on religious grounds. But simply invoking the name of God in a protest does not give that speech any greater protection than any other speech.

Furthermore, in most cases religion doesn’t (as many people think) trump law. As a general rule, laws are not supposed to encroach upon religion when public funds are involved and so long as the religious practices don’t violate the rights of others (ritual human sacrifice is not protected anywhere in the US because it’s murder and you don’t have the right to have your driver license picture taken wearing a burka with beehive webbing over the eye slits because this would unduly hamper law enforcement).

Anyway, the church founder is attempting to mischaracterize this as an issue of religious freedom which it is not. Also, not all speech is protected in a free society (slander and inciting people to criminal acts come to mind) and shouting “fire” in a crowded movie house is no more protected if you happen to have been speaking in the context of hell.

If the intentional infliction of emotional distress is a proper cause of action in civil court, then religious freedom cannot be held to be a valid defense when said speech is not being used in regards to one of the necessary tenets of that religion. As many objectionable things as the Christian religion may encompass, protesting about IEDs and fags at funerals has never been an essential part of the religion either in scripture, dogma, or tradition. If these religious bitches are to find any protection in the law, it cannot be derived from the concept of religious freedom.

Aaaaaaaaay!

I was just thinking about the fact that all the candidates for President suck and that Henry Winkler should run for President, not as himself, but reprising his role and actually BEING the Fonz. I went to Wikipedia and started reading about Fonzie and found this:

Henry Winkler has reported that, even today, he still gets requests to “be the Fonz” in real life. “People expect me to be this guy who can walk into a dark room, snap my fingers, and turn on the lights. Or they want me to pound my fist on the hood of a car, and start the engine. I can’t do it. I’ve tried! I think the silliest request I ever got was when somebody asked me to quiet the animals in a zoo.”

Haha! Yeah, he can quiet the animals at the zoo. He just doesn’t wanna fuckin’ do it!

Unfair

These people are being brought up on slavery charges. They are accused of keeping two Indonesian women as slaves for years in their Long Island home. I don’t know about the guy but the woman ought to object that her own face is prejudicial to the trial. Just look at her, she looks like a witch!

Varsha Sabhnani: Your Honor, I object. . . to my own face! I cannot get a fair trial here. I move for a change of venue.

Judge: I agree that your face is prejudicial but a change of venue to where? Salem?

Varsha Sabhnani: That stings. I call a curse on your head!

Judge: Nice try but I don’t believe in vindaloo.

All Your Thoughts are Belong to Us!

Phelps hipped me to this article about the new Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal. This story begins by talking about Bobby Jindal as being a “man of no color� and I thought it was going to be a celebration of intellectual freedom over race-based prejudices and the ushering of race relations into a new era. Boy was I wrong.

It seems that the writer of this article, one Emil Guillermo, a print and broadcast journalist of Filipino descent, is not a big fan of colored people thinking for themselves. This can be gleaned by the negative remarks made about the Louisiana governor in his artice, including:

He doesn’t change skin tone. His skin is still as dark and constant given his immigrant Hindu parents from Punjab.

But the changes are they’re on the inside, which makes the constancy of his skin tone a tool of deception.

Yes, he’s tricking us by deliberately not bleaching his skin.

When you see a person of color, you expect someone with similar values, views, beliefs — someone in touch with the emerging new majority. With Jindal, you get someone who very deliberately and proudly downplays his race in order to seek his own individual path.

That kind of independence under certain circumstances may be commendable. But only if you happen to agree with his ideas that range from free-market health care, intelligent design instead of evolution, anti-choice and a fenced-in America.

Under some circumstances free independent thinking by minorities is acceptable??? What circumstances, pray tell, are those Mr. Guillermo? I would hate to run afoul of the proper limitations ethnic minorities have to think.

Where’s the breakthrough for Asian Americans when the celebrant hardly acknowledges his ethnicity or doesn’t represent us?

Here is the part that’s gonna shock you. Bobby Jindal wasn’t elected to represent only yellow or red people (gasp!). He was elected to represent THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF LOUISIANA! If elected officials were only supposed to represent their own ethnic groups then ethnic minorities should never be elected because that would be unfair to the majority. If this line of reasoning sounds silly it should. People are elected because they advocate and will presumably implement certain ideas. If representation was based on ethnicity, then every four years we wouldn’t hold an election, they would hold a census. But here comes the worst line of all:

Jindal may be the political empowerment version of the Pogo line, “We have seen the enemy, and it is us.� It’s negative diversity — where the group is abandoned for individual glory.

The worst part about this is that Guillermo thinks, simply by virtue of his ethnicity, that Bobby Jindal owes favoritism to people of the same ethnicity. There is a word for this and it begins with r. I can’t remember what it is.

When Jindal won, even the New York Times saw it fitting to remark how the first words from his mouth weren’t about his historic ethnic victory. It was about LSU’s defeat of Auburn earlier that day. It’s an old trick, a la “We’re all part of the same team. Just us honky-tonk footballers here!�

What you are really trying to say is that if your parents are from a race that is indigenous to the Indian subcontinent then it’s physically impossible for you to like football or to root for LSU. It’s all a scam and no matter how many generations go by your people may only like soccer. Fabulous. How about a curry joke next?

Is he bridge-building? Or is it an example of the sickening kind of denial that can easily be attributed to ambitious, Darwinian, “every person for himself,� success stories in our minority communities?

This mischaracterization of Darwin’s ideas is stunning in its retardnicity. “Every person for himself� in nature would imply that communities would never form, not only for humans but also for lions, buffalo, zebras, and chimpanzees. Charles Darwin clearly never said or implied this. While it is impossible to recapitulate an idea as extensive as natural selection in one tidy phrase, Darwin’s theories would better be summed as “survival of the fittest� or “alpha males get more pussy�. Every man for himself is the cry of pirates on a sinking ship, not of the advocates of natural selection or even of chimps.

Maybe not to the new governor of Louisiana, whose real name, by the way, is Piyush Jindal.

He adopted the name Bobby because he liked The Brady Bunch. Now he’s created a unique modern character in Asian American political history: “Uncle Bob.�

This last part is beneath comment but I’m going to comment anyway. A man may call himself whatever he wants to call himself. For example, you are free to tell me that your name is Emil Guillermo. Similarly, I am free to call you a racist.

I will end by noting one other thing. I was reading a sports writer’s article about Tiger Woods once and the author lamented that, a decade into the Tiger Woods era, he (the author) was saddened by the fact that young black people weren’t flocking to golf in droves as he had expected after Tiger started winning championships. I, in turn, am saddened by the fact that some people can’t simply appreciate Tiger Woods for what he is. The greatest golf player of all time. Not the best black man, not the best Amerasian, but the the best player ever. Some things are not about race.

Sick

My throat suddenly hurts really bad. I can only presume I have the drug resistant strep that kills you. Thanks everybody it’s been nice. If I die and someone wants to finish writing the novel that’s on my computer it’s one third of the way done. You will need some sleuth software to get the password. There are notes at the back so you can figure out the gist of the story. Aack aack. Whataworld, whataworld!

The Devil’s Trill

I finally have a theme song. Now I just need Vanessa Mae to follow me around and play this all the time.

Political Grid

I’ve long held that the right/left dichotomy of American politics simply doesn’t hold up. I submit, for you examination, the first comment left by “R” on this blog on December 22, 2004:

What the shit? Is this some sort of conservative blog? Cuz it sure doesn’t fucking read like it.

No, it’s not a conservative blog, if by conservative you mean holding to the traditional ideals such as maintaining the status quo, the rich should remain rich and the poor should remain poor, the blacks should remain poor, the Mexicans should remain in Mexico, Americans should be predominantly Christian, sexual morality (including abortion) should be legislated, and drugs should be illegal. No, I do not hold to any of these concepts that are traditionally held to be viewed as conservative.

Neither do I hold to tenets of the liberal camp such as that government should provide a social safety net, the rich should be punished for their success and the poor should be exalted for their poorness, that race-based policies should be put into effect to correct the injustices of the past, that the government should be able to declare a minimum or a living wage, that the public should be compelled to fund abortion clinics, or that fart jokes are a sophisticated form of comedy. In fact the views of most people would be hard pressed to fit into a category of right/left and are sufficiently too complex to even place them anywhere along a continuum. I’m neither right, left, nor dead center. In this the paradigm fails.

Maybe a grid, maybe a sphere, but even a triangle would work better than a dichotomy. One point of the triangle could indicate collectivist socialism, the another point could be collectivist fascism, and the third point could be individualist. I don’t think there’s any such thing as an individualist socialist or an individualist fascist. Both fascism and socialism involve a mystical belief in the power of a group, which is of course antithetical to being an individualist. I’m open to different political thought paradigms. Any suggestions?

Big Texans and Monkeys

I just learned something this weekend. The University of Michigan’s backup quarterback is a 6’6″ freshman from Texarkana, Texas. His nickname (no kidding) is Big Tex. Whoda thunk it?

Also in the news, New Delhi Deputy Mayor dies in monkey attack. Is something like this in store for the new Louisiana mayor? Should bigger monkeys be brought in to prevent it? Very deep questions!

I’m out.

What, Me Worry?

Louisiana elects Aflred E. Newman as governor!