Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Abortion truck fail.

On my way to work, I drive past the local Planned Parenthood, the one which some idiot rammed his car into not to long ago (as in, INTO - he made eye contact with the receptionist and then drove the car straight at her, into the building). Today I left later than I usually leave, and so when I went by Planned Parenthood, I saw some activity there that I don't usually see. I noticed one of those obnoxious abortion trucks (though, I must say, this one did not have bloody pictures on it, unlike the ones that hang out in South Dakota) parked a few doors down, in front of the fake clinic.

For a second, I felt annoyed. Then, I decided to do something about my annoyance.
I pulled in right in front of the abortion truck, parked, walked up the block to Planned Parenthood, and wrote them a check right then and there. I contemplated telling the abortion truck people that they had motivated me to give money to Planned Parenthood, and I would have had they said anything to me, but they didn't, and I decided not to taunt them, both because I'm trying to be a better person than that, and also because I think they're often a bit unhinged and have proven themselves to be dangerous.

Friday, October 23, 2009

The elimination diet.

So, have I mentioned that I am on an elimination diet? Well, let me tell you: I am on an elimination diet. I have been on this elimination diet for nearly six weeks, and I have two foods to re-challenge before I will know what needs to stay out of my diet for another 8 weeks, followed by more food challenges, and what I can eat. This has been a complicated process, involving a lot of thinking about food, and a lot of natural bologna with goat cheese on spelt bread sandwiches (which are really quite good, but getting a little old, after six weeks). I have discovered the fascinating world of wheat-free eating (if you are avoiding gluten, check out Arico brand cookies - they are excellent and only a little odd), dairy-free eating (my absolute, hands-down favorite fake ice cream is Coconut Bliss, which is made from coconut milk and other yummy stuff AND which uses agave syrup instead of sugar; corn-free eating (not really an issue, except for the corn syrup that shows up in places you wouldn't expect); and nightshade vegetable-free eating (which, combined with the wheat and dairy avoidance, means I can't eat Italian food, which hurts. Though I hear there is a product, "no-mato," that is an excellent tomato substitute.).

I suspect that I am sensitive to cheese and nightshades. Fortunately, I seem to be able to eat ice cream with abandon (which, in fact, I had to do - you have to test each food with about 5-6 servings). So whey is ok and casein is forbidden, or something like that.

I will re-test cheese and nightshades soon. I look forward to getting past the testing phase and being able to eat just a little less intentionally. I'm amazed that I'm making it through all the thinking about food without re-developing an eating disorder.

But on the plus side - I feel pretty good.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Officially tapped.

It's finally happened. I have internet overload. I am exhausted by the amount of emails in my four email inboxes and Facebook, I have not been following anyone's blogging, and I certainly have not been posting. More and more, I am feeling the need to turn off the computer. The email balance has shifted from "a nice way to assist me in doing my work" to "a constant, droning buzz of communication that has reshaped the way I do my work, made me feel the need to be available to everyone 24/7, significantly shortened my attentional span and ability to concentrate, and greatly increased my workload." Meanwhile, there is little actual communication. When I do hear from a friend, I am too tired and busy to chat. And of course, I rarely talk to anyone on the phone.

I no longer look forward to blogging. I no longer enjoy it. I no longer have anything to say.

On top of this, I remember when email used to mean quick response time. This is no longer the case. We are all so overwhelmed with the constant flow that now, when I send a message outside of work, I often don't get a response for days/weeks. And, the same is true for my response time.

Why the hell are we doing this, again?

Friday, October 16, 2009

In the "smack your head" department...

(Get out your bingo card...but seriously, this reminded me, as well, of the rabbi who refused to marry Mr. P and me (a memory I'd kind of blocked out). If we allow one person to determine the worth, merits, and legality of someone else's marriage, we have a problem.)

Interracial couple denied marriage license in La.
By MARY FOSTER, Associated Press Writer
NEW ORLEANS – A white Louisiana justice of the peace said he refused to issue a marriage license to an interracial couple out of concern for any children the couple might have.

Keith Bardwell, justice of the peace in Tangipahoa Parish, says it is his experience that most interracial marriages do not last long.

"I'm not a racist. I just don't believe in mixing the races that way," Bardwell told the Associated Press on Thursday. "I have piles and piles of black friends. They come to my home, I marry them, they use my bathroom. I treat them just like everyone else."

Bardwell said he asks everyone who calls about marriage if they are a mixed race couple. If they are, he does not marry them, he said.

Bardwell said he has discussed the topic with blacks and whites, along with witnessing some interracial marriages. He came to the conclusion that most of black society does not readily accept offspring of such relationships, and neither does white society, he said.

"There is a problem with both groups accepting a child from such a marriage," Bardwell said. "I think those children suffer and I won't help put them through it."

If he did an interracial marriage for one couple, he must do the same for all, he said.

"I try to treat everyone equally," he said.

Bardwell estimates that he has refused to marry about four couples during his career, all in the past 2 1/2 years.

Beth Humphrey, 30, and 32-year-old Terence McKay, both of Hammond, say they will consult the U.S. Justice Department about filing a discrimination complaint.

Humphrey, an account manager for a marketing firm, said she and McKay, a welder, just returned to Louisiana. She is white and he is black. She plans to enroll in the University of New Orleans to pursue a masters degree in minority politics.

"That was one thing that made this so unbelievable," she said. "It's not something you expect in this day and age."

Humphrey said she called Bardwell on Oct. 6 to inquire about getting a marriage license signed. She says Bardwell's wife told her that Bardwell will not sign marriage licenses for interracial couples. Bardwell suggested the couple go to another justice of the peace in the parish who agreed to marry them.

"We are looking forward to having children," Humphrey said. "And all our friends and co-workers have been very supportive. Except for this, we're typical happy newlyweds."

"It is really astonishing and disappointing to see this come up in 2009," said American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana attorney Katie Schwartzmann. She said the Supreme Court ruled in 1967 "that the government cannot tell people who they can and cannot marry."

The ACLU sent a letter to the Louisiana Judiciary Committee, which oversees the state justices of the peace, asking them to investigate Bardwell and recommending "the most severe sanctions available, because such blatant bigotry poses a substantial threat of serious harm to the administration of justice."

"He knew he was breaking the law, but continued to do it," Schwartzmann said.

According to the clerk of court's office, application for a marriage license must be made three days before the ceremony because there is a 72-hour waiting period. The applicants are asked if they have previously been married. If so, they must show how the marriage ended, such as divorce.

Other than that, all they need is a birth certificate and Social Security card.

The license fee is $35, and the license must be signed by a Louisiana minister, justice of the peace or judge. The original is returned to the clerk's office.

"I've been a justice of the peace for 34 years and I don't think I've mistreated anybody," Bardwell said. "I've made some mistakes, but you have too. I didn't tell this couple they couldn't get married. I just told them I wouldn't do it."

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Politically Correct Atonement (Link)

This is the funniest thing I've read in a while. (Green and Belle, you will appreciate it!)

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

On revising the Bible*.

So I've seen the news that Conservapedia is editing the Bible to make it fit in with the twisted politics that Conservapedia espouses. In other words, Conservapedia is editing and rewriting the passages that have been understood to have liberal meanings.

And my big response to this is:

Yeah, and?

I mean, honestly, people? Do you think this is the first time that the Bible has been editing and revised? Do you not realize that the Bible has been mistranslated over and over again to suit a particular paradigm? Or that there are whole books that never made it into what we call the Bible because they were so radical (in other words, the collection of works into the Bible is *arbitrary*?!)

I'm just scratching my head, here - conservative Christians are revising the Bible and we are surprised? Even the most casual observance of conservative Christianity makes pretty clear that politics is what drives this movement. All these years, we've been saying, "hey, according to your logic, pork is just as sinful as homosexuality" - and it is - but have fundamentalists ever taken that seriously? No, of course not. Because it's not really about reading the Bible literally - it's only about reading the Bible literally if it supports their politics. The Leviticus stuff about homosexuality? That's all to be taken literally. But the minute you start talking about how "it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God," then, THEN we have to hear about how the "eye of a needle" is really the name of a narrow passageway that is difficult - but not impossible! - to fit a camel through, and so this doesn't really have anything to do with money, at all. (I kid you not.)

And even if you've been completely unaware of this, you must at least know that Conservapedia doesn't actually provide factual information. Knowing that, why would we NOT expect them to revise the Bible?

Clearly, I am mostly aghast that anyone finds such behavior unusual or not in keeping with the conservative Christian movement.

*I don't actually know why I'm even capitalizing the "B" in "Bible". Perhaps it is because I'm irritated.

Friday, October 02, 2009

OK, a little more apparently needs to be said.

Kate Harding said it here. But you should also read this, from California NOW's blog. I was sitting here, getting ready to go to bed, and then I read all these outraged statements from women I used to respect about how drugging and forcing a 13-year-old to have sex isn't really rape. No sleep now.

This is all that needs to be said about Roman Polanski.

Check out Kate Harding, who reminds us that Roman Polanski raped a child.