« October 2011 | Main | December 2011 »

92 posts from November 2011

November 30, 2011

Nigerian senate passes extreme anti-gay bill

Nigerian_newspaperThe march of anti-gay radicalism continues across Africa. LGBT Asylum News reports:

Nigeria's Senate 28 November passed an 'anti gay marriage' bill adding further penalties and extending its scope.

The Senate added to provisions targeting those living together (and those who don't report them) with new clauses making it illegal to register gay clubs or organizations, as well as criminalizing the “public show of same-sex amorous relationships directly or indirectly” with 10 years imprisonment....

The bill now goes to the House of Representatives, then for signature by the President, Goodluck Jonathan.

Rod 2.0 reports here and here.

Tyler Perry's open letter to 11-year-old abuse victim

Tyler_perryFilmmaker Tyler Perry has written a beautiful open letter to one of the boys who have accused Jerry Sandusky of sexual abuse. Here is how he begins:

I don’t know your name, but I know your face. I don’t know your journey, but I know where you are. I am your brother!

I must tell you, what you have done is so courageous. The strength that it must have taken for your 11-year-old voice to speak out about such a horrible act is something that I didn’t have the strength or courage to do at that age.

I was a very poor young black boy in New Orleans, just a face without a name, swimming in a sea of poverty trying to survive. Forget about living, I was just trying to exist. I was enduring a lot of the same things that you’ve come forward and said happened to you, and it was awful. I felt so powerless. I knew what was happening to me, but unlike you, I couldn’t speak about it because no one saw me. I was invisible and my voice was inaudible.

So to think that you, when you were only 11 years old, spoke up—you are my hero! I’m so proud of you. You have nothing to be ashamed of. I want you to know you didn’t do anything wrong. It’s not your fault. Please know that you were chosen by a monster. You didn’t choose him. You didn’t ask for it and, most of all, you didn’t deserve it....

Do you know that at the young age of 11 you had more courage than all the adults who let you down? All of the ones who didn’t go to the proper authorities, all of the ones who were worried about their careers, reputations, or livelihoods. All of the ones who didn’t want to get involved. Or even the ones who tried to convince your mother not to fight. You are stronger than them all!

Good for Tyler Perry.

(Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)

Bachmann, ready to implement President Carter's policy on relations with Iran

Michele_Bachmann_02Michele Bachmann says that if she were president, she would close the American embassy in Iran.

Trouble is, we haven't had an embassy in Iran since Jimmy Carter was President, during the Iran hostage crisis.

But never fear. Crazy Eyes has clarified.

Bryan Fischer blames Barney Frank for AIDS

AFA spokesnut Bryan Fischer explains how Rep. Barney Frank is to blame for AIDS. I am not going to maintain a comprehensive list of the right-wing potshots at our friend Barney in response to his announcement that he'll retire from Congress after sixteen terms. Suffice it to say that if you can judge a man by his enemies, the gentleman from Massachusetts is looking fine.

November 29, 2011

Bleeping Ann Coulter

When it was announced on MSNBC's Morning Joe this morning that Ann Coulter would be up next, I turned off the television and headed up the street for coffee. I have heard more than enough of her smirking slanders and bile. MSNBC, otoh, evidently loves to have such disreputable provocateurs as guests.

The above clip shows what then happened: Coulter lived up to her well-established reputation, and someone in the control room cut off her sound (rather than bleeping her, actually, though I like my headline) several times. I would have more sympathy for the folks at Morning Joe, except that they could not have been surprised by Coulter's behavior. She was invited because of her notoriety, not despite it.

This reminds me of the Aflak insurance people firing comedian Gilbert Gottfried for being Gilbert Gottfried. How can you hire someone with a well-established shtick and then act surprised when he lives up to it?

So here's giving the NBC brass a big raspberry for their cynical use of rhetorical bomb-throwers and performance artists like Ann Coulter. I would much rather see Gilbert Gottfried. If they cannot stomach him, that's okay — someone else will float along eventually.

November 28, 2011

Australian marriage equality ad: It's Time

HuffPo reports:

An Australian same-sex marriage advocacy group's sexy, dramatic new campaign has the blogosphere abuzz.

The independent advocacy organization GetUp! Action for Australia produced the new ad, simply titled "A Love Story," which depicts two handsome men enjoying romantic dates and dealing with family crises before a proposal and the subsequent nuptials.

"It's time," the ad proclaims at the conclusion. "End marriage discrimination."

Though a slim majority of Australians support marriage equality, few reportedly rate it highly as a national issue.

Speaking of Barney Frank....

.... here's someihng he had to say about Newt Gingrich at his press conference today.

 

(via Towleroad)

Barney Frank's YouTube highlights

Here are some YouTube highlights from Barney Frank's career, displaying his inimitable wit.





BTW, announcing your retirement thirteen months in the future is NOT the same as retiring. Andrea Mitchell about a half hour ago raised a question about "why he left." Arrrgggh! Dammit, Andrea, you know that he hasn't left. Why do so many reporters do this? They treat politicians who announce that they won't run for re-election not only as lame ducks, but as if they're already gone. No. He's not dead yet, as they say on Monty Python.

(Hat tip: The Washington Post)

Barney Frank won't seek re-election

Barney-frank-large-10Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), who was first elected to Congress in 1980 to the seat being vacated by Rep. Robert Drinan, has decided not to seek re-election in 2012. He is scheduled to announce his decision at 1 pm today. A key factor is the recent redrawing of his congressional district to remove the working-class stronghold of New Bedford while adding the Scott Brown stronghold of Walpole. Another factor is the likelihood that the GOP will retain control of Congress in 2012, coupled with the fact that members of the minority have much less ability to influence policy. A third factor is his personal life, which any dedicated activist sacrifices while in the arena.

The Boston Globe reports:

John Walsh, chairman of the Massachusetts Democratic Party, said in a statement: “In a state that has sent many great leaders to Washington, Barney Frank will take his place in history as a shining son of Massachusetts.”

Former party head Philip W. Johnston told the Globe: “He was brilliant, funny, acerbic, strategic, and unashamedly liberal. And they’re in short supply these days.”

Frank, 71, was raised in New Jersey but schooled at Harvard University and Harvard Law School, endowing him with a street-fighter’s mouth and an academic’s wit.

Speaking of being in the arena, Barney of course has his detractors, and right-wing provocateur Chris Barron of GOProud does not disappoint; but Joe Jervis shows that this reflects more on Mr. Barron. Barney is the first to acknowledge that he hasn't been perfect. But he has been an effective partisan fighter at a time when that was sorely needed. The comment above about him having "a street-fighter’s mouth and an academic’s wit" is apt. Barney, who was the first member of Congress to voluntarily acknowledge being gay, never fit the stereotype of gay people as effete. And his quick wit struck fear across the aisle. Contrary to Chris Barron, he will indeed be missed by a great many of us. Best wishes to him on his future endeavors, which evidently will include teaching.

Update: I am listening to Barney now on C-SPAN3, and he just said that in his retirement "I will neither be a lobbyist nor a historian," a dig at Newt Gingrich. He also said that despite his law degree he will not practice law, though he might work pro bono in a gay rights case on occasion.

November 27, 2011

It's not too late to benefit from Maggie's Thanksgiving advice

Well, it's too bad I didn't hear this advice from anti-gay obsessive Maggie Gallagher in time to upchuck my Thanksgiving dinner, but it's still good as a diet aid. Once again she portrays herself and her fellow bigots as the real victims of intolerance.

(Hat tip: Right Wing Watch)

44 hits the 'hood

President Obama and his daughters Sasha and Malia visited Kramerbooks at Dupont Circle yesterday in support of Small Business Saturday, about nine blocks from the White House. I was lunching by the Hudson at the time, so I missed the presidential security bubble passing through the neighborhood. Actually, I wish the security would rub off a bit more; a friend reported a couple of break-ins a few blocks north on Swann Street.

November 25, 2011

Latest News via DCGayEtc - November 25

DCGayEtc gathers links relevant to the DC LGBT activist community by scanning the internet and from user submissions. Feel free to use our RSS feed or you can follow us on Twitter.

Kevin Keller sets January wedding

ARCHIE-COMICS-REVEALEDThe Huffington Post informs us that Riverdale denizon Kevin Keller will tie the knot this January with his fiancé Clay Walker.  It wasn't that long ago that Riverdale got it's first openly gay resident (Moose and his beard Midge not withstanding) but considering that his introduction broke sales records for the company this development shouldn't be unexpected.

Of course, everyone isn't happy.  Peter Spriggs of the Family Research Council says “It's unfortunate that a comic book series usually seen as depicting innocent, all-American life is now being used to advance the sexual revolution, I think whatever boost in sales might come from the novelty or curiosity factors will be more than offset by the number of both kids and parents who will be turned off by this storyline and its obvious social and political agenda.”  Since in Riverdale they are of course remaining virgins until their wedding night it is hard to understand what his beef is.

Mediate points out

Seriously though, if we don’t do anything, America’s going to be in trouble. With this comic book coming out (no pun intended) and Chaz Bono dancing with stars, it’s only a matter of time before every child out there is a gay married transsexual. Because, as all science will tell you, children merely have to set eyes on LGBT people and they instantly turn into one themselves. It’s like the alternate lifestyle version of Medusa and stone.

Of course, this is said tongue in cheek. They do point out that in one year Kevin Keller is ready to marry while for nearly 60 years Archie has failed to make an honest woman of neither Veronica nor Betty.

(via TowleRoad)

Nov 29th - GetEQUAL DC Fundraiser

GetEQUAL is holding a fundraiser in Washington, DC, on November 29 -- and we'd love for you to join us!

We'll be at the home of Alison Gardner and Dan Massey, and we'll be gathering from 6:30pm-8:30pm. Admission to the fundraiser is $100 and we'll offer light food and drinks. Come connect with other folks who are passionate about pushing for full LGBT equality -- no delays, no compromises, no excuses!

If you'd like to donate online before, during, or after the fundraiser -- or if you're unable to attend but would still like to support GetEQUAL's work -- please donate on this page.

And please also feel free to send this page along to friends and colleagues who might be interested in supporting GetEQUAL's work. We're building a movement for full equality through a large grassroots movement, and need as many people as possible to support (and push forward) that work!

(via GetEQUAL DC)

It's time for marriage

That's what Australians are saying.  Though there are always people who are against equality.

November 24, 2011

Dec 6 - GLOV Holiday Happy Hour and Appreciation

Want to know more about the doings with GLOV?

Come by Duplex Diner after work to socialize, relax, spread holiday cheer, and benefit a good cause! Tuesday December 6th from 6:30 pm untill 8:30 pm. Duplex Diner is located at 2004 18th Street NW.

Join Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence (GLOV), DC's LGBT Anti-Violence Task Force, as we celebrate the end of the year. Casually meet officers and affiliates of the Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit (GLLU) of the Metropolitan Police Department, the U.S. Attorney's Office, and community activists, all fighting to make our city safe.

Recipients of the 2011 Guardian Awards will be recognized. Proceeds from drink sales will benefit GLOV.

RSVP on Facebook

Walzer in NYT responds to a slanted column on Israel

D.C.'s own Lee Walzer has an excellent letter in today's New York Times responding to a slanted column about Israel and gay rights. The standard is simple: give credit where due, not just criticism. Lee gets it exactly right.

MLB adopts pro-gay non-discrimination policy

Major League Baseball finally does the right thing. The Blade reports.

Scorsese's 3-D masterpiece

Salon raves about Martin Scorsese's new 3-D film, Hugo, set in a 1930s Parisian railway station:

Scorsese and his usual team of technical and design collaborators — let’s mention cinematographer Robert Richardson and production designer Dante Ferretti, for starters — create a gorgeous storybook vision of Paris, circa 1930, and moves us through it with fluid cinematic ease. Scorsese isn’t using 3-D as a stunt or a value-added effect but as a storytelling tool, a method of infusing his tale with humor, humanity and often breathtaking depth.

The movie is also a tribute to early pioneers of filmmaking, including Georges Méliès (someone every student of film history knows). Any Scorsese film is worth seeing, but this one sounds like a must-see.

20th Anniversary of Freddie Mercury's Death

It was 20 years ago today that Freddie Mercury died.

On the next page we have a video made in tribute for what would have been his 65th birthday.

Continue reading "20th Anniversary of Freddie Mercury's Death" »

November 23, 2011

Bryan Fischer: public displays of homosexuality are to blame for gay kids' deaths

Right Wing Watch reports:

In discussing the murder of openly gay student Lawrence King, Bryan Fischer says the solution is to "curb public expressions of homosexual behavior."

This Thanksgiving I am thankful to RWW for keeping an eye on hateful nutjobs like Fischer.

Basic respect and human dignity from MPD

Is that too much to ask for?  Last week the DC TLGB Police Watch issued a list of demands concerning the Metropolitan Police Department.  By coincidence there was a conviction for an attack on a trangender woman the next day which The Washngton Post noted.  One of the comments on this story has drawn some attention in the LGBT community.  THSMITH3 is identified in the comment as a member of the homicide division and has the following to say:

Excuse me, but where exactly do you get your statistics? And in your "analysis" of the statistics, do you account for the FACT that a disproportionate amount of the crimes committed against TG (Male to Female) are committed against TG males engaged in the illegal activity of PROSTITUTION. AND, that these criminal PROSTITUTES are less likely to know their attacker (leading to lower closure and prosecution rates) AND the TG males are LESS LIKELY to cooperate in the investigation because they DISLIKE the police (BECAUSE WE ARREST THEM FOR PROSTITUTION) And their cases are less likely to be prosecuted when an arrest is made because they have CREDIBILITY PROBLEMS (Due to their CRIMINAL HISTORIES). Don't make these STATISTICS YOU CITE about POLICE BIAS. I'm sure if you analyze crime statistics about crimes against FEMALE PROSTITUTES you would find a similar trend of LOWER "JUSTICE" OUTCOMES. And by the way, I left the USAO front doors during the "PROTEST" an saw some signs that asked for and "END TO THE PROSTITUTION FREE ZONES" Does this mean that the Protesters want the right for TG males to commit acts of prostitution in the alleys behind people's homes and drop used (possibly infected) condoms where children walk to school. PLEASE KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT BEFORE YOU MAKE BIASED COMMENTS AGAINST POLICE OFFICERS. (And yes I am a 13 year member of DC's Finest and currently assigned as a HOMICIDE DETECTIVE) 

Wow. Before discussing this let me take a brief aside.

Continue reading "Basic respect and human dignity from MPD" »

Oh no they didn't

Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann was a guest on Jimmy Fallon's "Late Night" show Monday night, and it turns out that the intro music played by house band The Roots was a 1985 song by Fishbone called "Lyin' Ass Bitch." The choice of music was made by bandleader and drummer Questlove, who is "grounded" according to a tweet by Fallon. Wow. Tell us what you really think.

November 22, 2011

Labor Secretary Solis on TDOR

Labor Secretary Hilda Solis issued the following statement on November 18 in advance of the Transgender Day of Remembrance, which was held on November 20:

Solis

The Transgender Day of Remembrance will be commemorated this Sunday, Nov. 20. I am proud to stand and be counted as an ally to the transgender community and to every person and family impacted by anti-transgender violence.

What began as an online project in 1999 to memorialize the murder of a transgender person will this year include hundreds of vigils and events throughout the country and around the world. I hope that this year’s commemoration will serve as an opportunity to shine a brighter light on both progress made and the challenges ahead.

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the National Center for Transgender Equality recently joined me at the U.S. Department of Labor to present a comprehensive study on the experiences of transgender people in America. More than 90 percent of transgender people experience harassment and mistreatment in the workplace, with nearly half being fired or denied a promotion. This is unacceptable.

And while my department focuses on the nation’s workforce, I am equally troubled by the experiences of transgender people in their homes and in our schools and hospitals that promise to shelter, educate and heal.

This administration has taken specific steps to protect our transgender citizens. In 2009, the president signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, expanding the 1969 United States federal hate crimes law to include crimes motivated by a victim’s gender identity. The following year, our federal government updated its nondiscrimination policy on USA Jobs to explicitly include protection on the basis of gender identity.

Continue reading "Labor Secretary Solis on TDOR" »

Two can play the misquote game, Mitt

Above is Mitt Romney's first national TV ad, which edits a clip in which Barack Obama was quoting John McCain, and falsely treats it as Obama's own statement. This is not a distortion, it is a baldfaced lie.

Below, Think Progress gives Mitt a taste of his own medicine.

(Hat tip: Joe Jervis)

Fox News rots your brain

A new study (PDF) from Fairleigh-Dickenson University has shown that people who watch Fox News are less informed than people who watch no TV news at all.

Fox news

But the real finding is that the results depend on what media sources people turn to for their news. For example, people who watch Fox News, the most popular of the 24-hour cable news networks, are 18-points less likely to know that Egyptians overthrew their government than those who watch no news at all (after controlling for other news sources, partisanship, education and other demographic factors). Fox News watchers are also 6-points less likely to know that Syrians have not yet overthrown their government than those who watch no news.

I only watch the PBS News Hour on TV so I probably only loose a few points.

(via The Huffington Post)

A pepper-spray assault on democracy

Arianna Huffington has an excellent commentary on the excessive use of force against Occupy protesters at the behest of mayors and college administrators:

This weekend, while listening to an NPR story about police using tear gas and rubber bullets to break up a demonstration, I was actually surprised when it turned out the newscaster was talking about Tahrir Square -- I had assumed it was about another brutal response to a peaceful protest here at home.

All across the country -- most recently on the campus of UC Davis -- a war is being waged. This isn't a battle over parks and tents and sleeping bags. Though many of our leaders don't seem to realize it, this is a battle about their credibility -- even their legitimacy -- about how they represent us, about whom their real allegiance is to. Their misguided response to the Occupy protests has actually proved the point of the protesters more than any sign or chant could....

Each week brings an image more iconic than the last. There was the NYPD officer calmly walking up to several women who were penned, pepper-spraying them in the face and then slinking off. There was the 84-year-old woman pepper-sprayed in Seattle, along with a pregnant 19-year-old and a priest. There was Iraq War veteran Scott Olsen splayed on the ground with a serious head injury after being assaulted by police in Oakland. There was the picture of Elizabeth Nichols being pepper-sprayed directly in the face at close range by police in Portland.

And there were the indelible images from the surprise 1 a.m. raid on Occupy Wall Street's Zuccotti Park encampment by the NYPD -- which, Mayor Bloomberg claimed, was because it had become "a health and fire safety hazard." Really? Does the city traditionally take care of "health and fire safety hazards" under cover of darkness? ...

City officials usually like to publicize their efforts fighting "health and fire safety hazards" for their citizens. But not this time. Not only were the media not allowed to report on the raid on Zuccotti, many reporters were barricaded, blocked, manhandled and even arrested. "The first thing the police did was clear out the journalists so that they could not see what was going on," writes Eric Alterman, "just as they routinely do in totalitarian nations."

I think the actions Bloomberg authorized against reporters, and his lying about it, make him unfit for office. He has flagrantly violated two First Amendment clauses: freedom of the press and the right of the people peaceably to assemble. He has to go, every bit as much as the chancellor at UC Davis.

BTW, when I saw the images of tear gas etc. from Tahrir Square, I had the same initial reaction as Arianna, thinking they were images of another police assault against Occupy protesters. This should embarrass every American. I can only hope that a tragedy similar to that at Kent State four decades ago does not have to happen before these abuses stop. Such police abuses are in effect destroying America in order to save it. No. It is not acceptable.

Latest News via DCGayEtc - November 22

DCGayEtc gathers links relevant to the DC LGBT activist community by scanning the internet and from user submissions. Feel free to use our RSS feed or you can follow us on Twitter.

Golden Hour

Kameny_casket
(Photo by Robert Dodge)

My column for Thanksgiving uses thoughts on the passing of Frank Kameny as a jumping-off point for a celebration of leadership and carrying on the fight. Here's a portion:

It was the "golden hour" of late afternoon on Nov. 3 during the viewing for gay rights pioneer Frank Kameny when I walked outside the Carnegie Library for some fresh air. I had been greeting people arriving to pay their respects. The sun hung low above the White House to the southwest, bathing the cars on New York Avenue in a golden light. Charles Francis, co-founder of the Kameny Papers Project, sat beside me as I searched for a WiFi signal for my new iPad. The first book I had downloaded was Frank’s 1961 petition to the U.S. Supreme Court, which Charles had published on Kindle. New tools, old struggle.

Two hours later, night had fallen when I walked behind Frank’s flag-draped casket. There at curbside under a half moon stood Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, Mayor Vincent Gray, several D.C. Council members, and an honor guard of gay servicemembers. They were a testament to how far we’ve come since Frank first fought back. Inside earlier, the Rock Creek Singers of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington had sung three selections including a gorgeous a cappella "Star-Spangled Banner."

Speaking at a memorial gathering for Kameny on Capitol Hill on Nov. 15, Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) praised Kameny’s assertiveness, noting he was no "shrinking violet." He drew laughter when he said he appreciated Kameny for proving that effective activism did not require being a neat dresser.

We are all Kameny’s legacy. That is one of the blessings I count this Thanksgiving.

Read the whole thing here.

November 21, 2011

Sgt. Pepper

Pepper_spray_founders

The outrage against the casual and sadistic police use of pepper spray against nonviolent protesters at UC Davis will be useful if it is channeled into political organizing.

(Hat tip: Joe Jervis)

Quote of the day

There aren't enough baths to make Newt Gingrich clean.

That was said by Joan Walsh on MSNBC's The Ed Show tonight, November 21. Amen.

Love in Action: Poet Drew Dellinger at Occupy Oakland

Tasneem Raja at Mother Jones writes:

Here's a powerful look back at Occupy Oakland's general strike (feels like forever ago, doesn't it?) by spoken-word artist Drew Dellinger and filmmaker Velcrow Ripper. And if you want to relive that intensely crazy night, here's our liveblog from November 2nd.

This is a lovely video. Share it widely. Incidentally, I need to come up with a nom de guerre as cool as Velcrow Ripper.

(Hat tip: Walter Dellinger)

Marriage News Watch - November 21st 2011

.

November 20, 2011

LGBT Asylum News roundup

LGBT Asylum News logo

Here are the latest international news items from Paul Canning at LGBT Asylum News:

CA Supreme Court ruling granting standing to Prop 8 supporters

Here's the link to the California Supreme Court ruling giving standing to marriage equality opponents to appeal Judge Vaughn Walker's 2010 decision overturning the anti-gay Proposition 8. The ruling on standing concludes:

For these reasons, I agree that, when state officials refuse to defend a voter-approved initiative measure in court, or to appeal a judgment invalidating thatinitiative, its official proponents have authority, as a matter of state law, to assert the state‘s interest in the initiative‘s validity.

The American Foundation for Equal Rights is optimistic:

“We are pleased that the California Supreme Court has now responded to the Ninth Circuit’s request for advice regarding a question of California procedural law,” said Theodore B. Olson, lead co-counsel for the plaintiffs. “Important questions of federal law remain pending before the Ninth Circuit, including, most significantly, the constitutionality of Proposition 8. We now anticipate a prompt and thorough resolution of those questions by the federal appeals court, which, we expect, will affirm the trial court’s comprehensive and compelling decision that Proposition 8 violates the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses. We hope that the long wait for justice by gay and lesbian Californians will soon be over.”

"You can't just Wikipedia your way to the White House"

Jon Huntsman visits Saturday Night Live. Very amusing, but I hope that after this he doesn't make any digs about President Obama relying on teleprompters. His almost-but-not-quite eye contact with the camera is quite distracting. The quote in my title above is from Weekend Update's Seth Meyers.

Hawking: let's go trash somebody else's planet

Okay, so that's not quite how physicist Stephen Hawking puts it. He says space exploration is our only long-term survival option in light of the effect of our destructive impulses on planet earth: "Our only chance of long-term survival is not to remain lurking on planet Earth, but to spread out into space."

I have been a lifelong enthusiast for space exploration, but I don't think this is a legitimate reason for it. If we insist on fouling our own nest, we should stew in it. Setting aside the difficulty of interstellar travel in the absence of warp drive, any planet habitable to human life is likely to have its own life forms. Let's spare the rest of the universe our concept of Manifest Destiny, not to mention our diseases. Once we've overcome our galactic-sized sense of entitlement, then maybe we'll be fit to head outward.

Police casually use pepper spray against non-violent protesters at UC Davis

Lt. John Pike casually uses pepper spray against a line of nonviolent protesters at UC Davis. Joan Walsh writes at Salon:

What the UC Davis protesters did Friday was non-violent. What the cops did in response was brutality. The video is very hard to watch. But if you watch the whole thing, you’ll see the remaining students begin to chant “Shame on you!” and slowly move toward the police. And you’ll see the cops begin to retreat, maybe because their work is done, but maybe because they’re feeling the moral and political power of that non-violent crowd. Some of the cops really do look ashamed, including Pike himself (in my opinion; you might see it differently.)

There has been too much of this casual police brutality in response to OWS. That the offending officers are unlikely to be punished for it makes it no less criminal. This is not what we are paying for with our public safety dollars.

Cain: if Supreme Court overturns DOMA, I'll overturn them

You will perhaps not fall out of your chair at the revelation that Herman Cain is ignorant of the structure of the United States government. Newt Gingrich, OTOH, who basically agrees with him, is merely being cynical. Hey, vote for these guys if you want Robert Bork's view of the Constitution to prevail.

Update: I posted this without realizing that Charlie had just posted it. Great minds think alike!

Republican candidates support overthrowing the Constitution

GaygothicRepublican presidential hopefuls gathered in Iowa last night to pander to rightwing religious fanatics.  Apparently Herman Cain doesn't much respect the document that he will pledge to uphold if he is elected president (shortly after pigs start flying).  And history professor Gingrich also wants to toss out hundreds of years of legal precident in order to protect marriage bigotry.  Keep in mind that this is the guy who wants to imprison his political opponents for supporting position he opposes.  The correct answer to this question is that they would seek an amendment to the constitution barring marriage equality.  The religous right no longer favor this approach since such an amendment would likely fail.  In Rhode Island the Republicans took over the government and the legislature  voted to repeal marriage equality rather than seek an amendment to the state constitution.  Polls now show 55% of Rhode Island voters oppose such an amendment.  Even in North Carolina where the population if opposed to marriage equality amending the constitution is thought to be going too far.

Mitt Romney skipped thisside show.  He continues to look the most presidential.

(via JoeMyGod)