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Archive for the ‘Current Events’ Category

Cartoon by Jimmy Margulies

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I didn’t feel much like writing today, so instead I’ll just link to some interesting articles I came across today and would like to share.

As if Caster Semenya hadn’t already been through enough: “Athlete Caster Semenya has pulled out of her return to competitive sport amid growing fears over the psychological impact of rumours about her sex. The 18-year-old withdrew from a cross-country race in South Africa tomorrow after it was widely reported that a leaked sex test reveals she is a hermaphrodite. Her coach, Michael Seme, said she will not run because she is “not feeling well”. After dominating her race at the world championships in Berlin last month, Semenya underwent blood and chromosome tests, as well as a gynaecological examination. The IAAF has said Semenya probably would keep her gold medal because the case was not related to a doping matter. But it is less clear whether she would be allowed to compete again.” From The Guardian

And apparently Semenya isn’t the first athlete to have to deal with this type of ordeal. Click here to read Santhi Soundarajan’s story, an Indian athlete who was stripped of her medal in the 2006 Asian Games after failing a gender test. She attempted suicide after her ordeal. Soundarajan tells her own story, and also talks about Semenya.

Marc Lamont Hill writes about Maia Campbell’s story at Essence.com. Go here to read his commentary: “A Look At Our Indifference to Black Women’s Mental Health.”

Gertrude Baines, the world’s oldest person died Friday at age 115. “In her final years, she passed her days watching her favorite TV program, ‘The Jerry Springer Show,’ and consuming her favorite foods: bacon, fried chicken and ice cream.” And all this time I thought those things would shorten one’s lifespan. Who knew? Go here to read her story.

And in music news, Q-Tip’s album “Kamaal the Abstract,” which was shelved back in 2001 is finally being officially released this coming Tuesday. I can’t even listen to his last album, “The Renaissance,”  anymore — that’s how much I played it — so I’m excited. Go here to listen to him speak on the album.

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Cross posted from my fictional blog: Relax.Relate.Release.

repwilson

After Republican Rep. Joe Wilson made his outburst during President Obama’s speech to Congress last night, he came out with an apology.

Because I felt like partaking in some pure foolery, my version of the night’s events are in bold. The rest is straight from CNN’s Political Ticker.

WASHINGTON (CNN) — GOP Rep. Joe Wilson of South Carolina issued a statement Wednesday night apologizing for his outburst during President Obama’s speech to Congress:

“This evening I let my inner hater loose! let my emotions get the best of me when I was kind of listening to the liar’s President’s lies remarks regarding the coverage of illegal immigrants in the death to America health care bill. Sometimes when you’re upset, things just slip out. What’s a little “You lie!” every now and then? How was I supposed to know people would get upset? I did feel Nancy Pelosi’s cold side-eye, but really, was that supposed to let me know I was in the wrong?

So it’s OK to spread the death to Granny story and make posters of the President as a Communist Joker, but someone shouts a little bit of truth during a speech and people get all upset? I thought it was OK to disrespect the President and yell out during one of his speeches to Congress. Our behavior’s supposed to be different here than at an unruly town hall meeting? We’re supposed to pretend to be civil? Oh. Well someone should have sent ME that memo because I didn’t know.

While I disagree with the liar’s President’s statement, my comments were inappropriate and completely reasonable and necessary regrettable. Now I have to pretend to be sorry even though I’m not. I extend sincere yeah right, he can go suck it apologies to the liar President for my people not backing me up this lack of civility. You all were supposed to have my back! This was not how it was supposed to go down when we met before the speech.”

Here’s what went down after the apology statement was issued:

WASHINGTON (CNN) — CNN’s Deirdre Walsh reports that Republican Rep. Joe Wilson called the White House Wednesday night to apologize for his outburst during President Obama’s speech, and spoke with White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.

UPDATE: CNN’s Ed Henry reports that a senior administration official says that in the phone call, Emanuel accepted the apology on behalf of the president and told the congressman: “Eff That Sorry Apology After What You Pulled Tonight!” Click. “We can disagree without being disagreeable. That was the point of the President’s speech.”

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For some reason I just got extra ticked off today. It started off with the coverage of President Obama’s Back to School speech and then ended with the mainstream media’s coverage of what he “must” say during his speech to Congress on health care this week. I don’t know what’s more frustrating – President Obama acting like he’s still campaigning for the presidency and waiting for the opposition to turn around and take him in open arms – or Conservatives acting like he needs their permission to even do something like make a speech to children urging them to do well in school.

I know President Obama is all about bipartisanship and all, but if someone shows you that they would drive over you if you tripped and fell onto the street, waiting for them to like you becomes futile. The longer he waits to be liked and hosts events like “Beerfest ’09,” the longer he’s going to have to placate people and ask permission to do his job. And the more the media and Conservatives will think it’s OK to make him ask permission.

On CNN today, there was a long panel discussion on “What President Obama MUST Say” during his speech to Congress on healthcare. What he has to say that will be OK to CNN pundits. Not what he may say, but what he MUST say to make them happy.

Then we have Ga. Sen. Saxby Chambliss on Fox News talking about how President Obama has to be “humble” when he speaks to Congress about health care.

Because Obama may be president, but we wouldn’t want him getting all uppity or anything. Remember who’s boss now.

Ugh.

It’s like bullies in school. Once someone lets the bullies get away with disrespecting him or her once, they’re not going to stop doing it just because you offer them a nice smile and some candy. President Obama: THEY DON’T WANT YOUR CANDY. No matter how sweet it is. They’ll throw it on the ground because it has the taint of that uppity Negro Communist who handed it to them. How you deal with this is up to you. But just remember that you actually won the election last year. You don’t need the media or Conservative’s permission to get something done.

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art.obama.gun.poolThe presence of guns has entered the health care debate. This could easily get out of hand. And what’s crazy, is so far, the media is acting like this is OK. How do health care reform and gun rights correlate? This is disturbing in so many ways and shouldn’t just be seen as people exercising their Second Amendment rights. I wish these all these angry folks would own up to what they’re really angry about because it sure isn’t health care.

From the Associated Press:

PHOENIX – About a dozen people carrying guns, including one with a military-style rifle, milled among protesters outside the convention center where President Barack Obama was giving a speech Monday — the latest incident in which protesters have openly displayed firearms near the president.

Gun-rights advocates say they’re exercising their constitutional right to bear arms and protest, while those who argue for more gun control say it could be a disaster waiting to happen.

Phoenix police said the gun-toters at Monday’s event, including the man carrying an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle slung over his shoulder, didn’t need permits. No crimes were committed, and no one was arrested.

The man with the rifle declined to be identified but told The Arizona Republic that he was carrying the assault weapon because he could. “In Arizona, I still have some freedoms,” he said.

Phoenix police Detective J. Oliver, who monitored the man at the downtown protest, said police also wanted to make sure no one decided to harm him.

“Just by his presence and people seeing the rifle and people knowing the president was in town, it sparked a lot of emotions,” Oliver said. “We were keeping peace on both ends.”

Last week, during Obama’s health care town hall in Portsmouth, N.H., a man carrying a sign reading “It is time to water the tree of liberty” stood outside with a pistol strapped to his leg.

“It’s a political statement,” he told The Boston Globe. “If you don’t use your rights, then you lose your rights.”

Police asked the man to move away from school property, but he was not arrested.

Fred Solop, a Northern Arizona University political scientist, said the incidents in New Hampshire and Arizona could signal the beginning of a disturbing trend.

“When you start to bring guns to political rallies, it does layer on another level of concern and significance,” Solop said. “It actually becomes quite scary for many people. It creates a chilling effect in the ability of our society to carry on honest communication.”

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President Obama is now saying that the public option is only a sliver of health reform. The administration is suggesting some type of co-op option instead. Err??? Where did this come from? Over the weekend, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said the public option is “not the essential element” for reform.  Then the administration came out saying that Sebelius “misspoke.” Uh huh. It seems like this is the Obama Administration’s way of backing down on health care reform, without just saying, um, yeah, we’re backing out of the public option.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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When I first read this story I had to reread it a few times just to make sure the Marriott in downtown Stamford, Conn., is really blaming a woman for getting raped on the hotel’s property. But it wasn’t a misread.

From the Connecticut Post:

STAMFORD — A downtown hotel being sued by a woman raped at gunpoint in its parking garage is claiming she was careless, negligent and “failed to exercise due care for her own safety and the safety of her children and proper use of her senses and facilities,” according to court documents.

The victim’s attorneys also argue the hotel has inadvertently identified her to acquaintances by asking them to testify.

The Stamford Marriott Hotel & Spa, along with the firms in charge of managing the hotel and its parking garage, made the claim as part of a list of special defenses filed in state Superior Court in Stamford last month. Such defenses allow defendants in civil suits to argue they are not responsible for damages even if the plaintiff’s story is true.

The woman filed the lawsuit in May 2008, six months after Danbury native Gary Fricker, 56, was sentenced to 20 years in prison after a plea deal in the case.

On Oct. 10, 2006, Fricker stuck a handgun in the back of the then 40-year-old woman and forced her and her children, then 3 and 5, into their minivan as they left the hotel, according to court documents.

She let him go through her wallet and told him he could take it, but Fricker demanded she take off her clothes. Fricker sexually assaulted the woman for several minutes, pointing the gun at her and her children and threatening to sexually assault one of her children. (more…)

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