Howzzat Hate Crime Law Workin’, Eh?

September 30, 2011

From Queer Channel Media:

A transgender woman says she disagrees with a decision by the United States Attorney’s office to lower the charge against a man arrested for shooting her in the neck on Sept. 12 while she sat in her car parked in Southeast Washington.

District resident Darryl Willard, 20, pleaded guilty on Thursday in D.C. Superior Court to a charge of aggravated assault while armed in connection with the shooting. His plea came after prosecutors agreed to drop a more serious charge of assault with intent to kill while armed.

“I told them I was willing to go to a trial and testify” if prosecutors went with the more serious charge, said the victim, who spoke on condition that her name was withheld.

She said prosecutors informed her of their decision to lower the charge in exchange for Willard’s guilty plea last week shortly after she was released from the hospital and after the decision was reached.

They said that going to trial with a jury could be a problem because they [the defense] would bring up my lifestyle,” the woman said.

Now, this case is – as far as I’m aware – not one where the hate crime law-that-those-who-claim-to-speak-for-us-because-they-have-appropriated-for-themselves-the-right-to-speak-for-us-even-though-they-don’t-speak-for-us-claimed-in-2009-we needed-more-than-substantive-anti-discrimination-protections was applicable, but…

Local transgender activists Earline Budd and Jeri Hughes said they, too, disagree with the lowering of the charge. Both said they were troubled that the U.S. Attorney’s office apparently didn’t consult the victim in advance of its plea bargain decision and appears to have presented her with a fait accompli on the matter.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney’s office has said the office never comments on why it chooses to offer plea bargain agreements that lower charges in specific cases.

In discussing its general policy on plea bargain decisions, the U.S. Attorney’s office in the past has said it considers factors such as whether a jury would be likely to convict someone on a more serious charge.

…this nevertheless begs the question:  If they’re too afraid to go to a jury with a trans victim, what exactly is the point of having a hate crime law that covers anti-trans hate crimes?

“How about if a U.S. Attorney gets shot in the neck?” said Hughes. “Let’s see if someone gets just five years for that.”

I have a better idea: How about making a concerted effort to hire a bunch of transsexual AUSAs to get that twain to meet?


I Think One of Lewis Black’s Favorite Phrases is Appropriate Here

September 25, 2011

Namely…

HOLY FUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

From the Boston Herald:

“I’ve been making a lot of money for a decade and a half,” said Toby Keith, on the phone from Saratoga, N.Y.

Many people in his audience have taken huge knocks in the recession. So, Keith was asked, should those in his income bracket be more heavily taxed, as Warren Buffett advocates, to help ease America’s financial crisis?

“I don’t know, but I expect the wealthy to write a check ’cause it’s as bad as it’s ever been,” the Oklahoma-born Keith said. “It would be unpatriotic not to try to save the country. I’m sure people will bitch about it, but if it meant we get to operate in this country and live here another day, then so be it.

“One way or another, before it’s over they’re gonna have to come and take big money from the earners and big corporations to save the country. I’m sure that everybody that has a patriotic cell in their system will say, ‘If it’s gotta be done, it’s gotta be done.’ I’d rather live here and not have as much money than live anywhere else and have twice as much.”

John Boehner, Eric Cantor and Paul Ryan held a joint news conference to address this remarkably reality-based comment from a country music star who was a rabidly pro-Bush during the manufacturing of the justification for the Iraq War as anyone.  Sayeth the Republicans:

La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you! La! La! La! La! La! La! I can’t hear you!

Sayeth Katrina Rose: Okay, that last quote is fake, but the one from Toby Keith appears to be legit.


News Headlines From the Past and….

September 25, 2011

A friend of mine, a recent graduate from the Ph.D. program at the U of Iowa passed along a story from the New Orleans Time-Picayune about the assassination of the city’s police chief – back in 1890.

Here’s the headline from the immediate aftermath of the assassination:

It kinda got me wondering about other headlines from the past.

Here’s one from the July 15, 1789 edition of the Paris Post, owned by Lord Rupert, Marquis of Avignon:

Nothing Happened at the Bastille Yesterday

And here’s an item from the news crawl from the affiliated Fox News France (I bet you didn’t know that France had TV back then, did you?) from the afternoon of the previous day:

New Flowers Blooming at Versailles…Nothing at all is Happening at the Bastille…Peasants Have All the Bread that they Need…Nothing at all is Happening at the Bastille…His Majesty Adopted an Orphan Kitten…Nothing at all is Happening at the Bastille…The Queen Really Loves the Peasants…Nothing at all is Happening at the Bastille….

Perhaps if the Independent had existed back then, their headline might have read:

Holy Shit! The French Peasants are Pissed! And They’re Actually Doing Something About it!

From the Independent today:

About 80 people have been arrested as demonstrators who were camped out near the New York Stock Exchange marched through lower Manhattan.

The Occupy Wall Street protest is entering its second week. Demonstrators said they were protesting bank bailouts, the mortgage crisis and Georgia’s execution of Troy Davis.

Currently at the Rupert Murdoch-owned NY Post (you know…New York? Where Wall Street is? And is being occupied?)

At Fox ‘News’?

Surely, though, that ‘liberal’ MSNBC will have something…right?

I guess nothing is happening at the Bastille today either.

Let me go check to see if I’m out of bread…..


Rick Santorum Demonstrates How Small His Penis Is

September 22, 2011

Well, perhaps if he has any self-awareness whatsoever non-veteran Santorum will look back on tonight’s Republican debate and realize that he would have embarassed himself – and his party and his country – far less had he actually just whipped out ‘little Ricky’ instead of delivering the Sermon on the Mounting.

He’s against any – by anyone who might happen to be in the military.

I would say any type of sexual activity has no place in the military.

I struck out the bit about embarassing his party because, well, a partisan crowd that would boo a soldier is, well…

just so damn Republican.

But a moron who could never be bothered to actually defend America who de facto tells every married and/or hetero member of the military that they not only must either remain single or, if married, get divorced and thereafter remain celibate in order to remain in the military is…

just so damn Republican.


That Sound You Just Heard Was the Gerbil on the Wheel Inside William Donohue’s Head Blowing His Brains Out at the Thought of Having to Come Up With a Way to Blame THIS on Teh Gays

September 22, 2011

You know William Donohue, right?  The entirety of obnoxious media mouthpiece for the so-called catholic league who says that the international continuing criminal enterprise of systemic sexual assault of young boys by priests is not a catholic problem or a pedophilia problem but – wait for it – a homosexual problem?

Good luck blaming this on gays – though, of course, I’m sure he’ll figure out a way and I’m sure, if no one else, Bill O-Lie-Ly will allow him on the air unchalleneged to spew it:

The Catholic Church in Rome made the extraordinary admission yesterday that it is aware priests from at least 23 countries have been sexually abusing nuns.

The Catholic Church in Rome made the extraordinary admission yesterday that it is aware priests from at least 23 countries have been sexually abusing nuns.

Most of the abuse has occurred in Africa, where priests vowed to celibacy, who previously sought out prostitutes, have preyed on nuns to avoid contracting the Aids virus.

Confidential Vatican reports obtained by the National Catholic Reporter, a weekly magazine in the US, have revealed that members of the Catholic clergy have been exploiting their financial and spiritual authority to gain sexual favours from nuns, particularly those from the Third World who are more likely to be culturally conditioned to be subservient to men.

The reports, some of which are recent and some of which have been in circulation for at least seven years, said that such priests had demanded sex in exchange for favours, such as certification to work in a given diocese.

In extreme instances, the priests had made nuns pregnant and then encouraged them to have abortions.

Yes, “pro-life” is whatever they say it means at any given nano-second.

Forced to acknowledge the problem, the Vatican has tried to play down its gravity.

And in other news, sand is sandy.

Alas, poor gerbil, I’m sure Bill hardly knew ye!


The Constitution-Vampirism of Religion

September 22, 2011

PZ Meyers distills perfectly the disease of allowing religion to have a legitimate – much less equal – place at the table in matters that actually have to do with reality (you know…law, science, etc.):

Just take common questions, declare them a mystery and that no one has an answer, and presto, religion becomes an authority.

An authority on par with with “man’s law”…

and we all know that ties go to religion, no?

Although he just as easily could have been summarizing an underlying motif of the Rush Limbaugh Show over the last two-plus decades, Myers actually was analyzing a wonderful (cough, hack) scholastic (barf) publication by – I kid you not – Bob Jones University Press.

Michele Bachmann voters and Sarah Palin supporters…

they start ’em young.

Stated differently:

It’s truly frightening to think there are people this ignorant who are in a position to peddle such tosh to impressionable kids.

No wonder christianists don’t want gays and lesbians to be around kids.  Aside from the handful at radfemshlub, twanzphobic and in the Luna-Tick’s orbit, it would be damn near impossible to find any non-heterosexual (including- and here’s my annual quota of grudging compliments for HRC – those on Rhode Island Avenue; c’mon, Joe Solmonese is a transphobic turd, but I’d wager a few bucks that he could do a better job of explaining electricity than that) who is not light-years more intelligent than these mushrooms-with-printing-press.


Did You Support Doing That at the Close of the Bush Junta?

September 22, 2011

From the comments section to a blog post about Attorney General Eric Holder that linked to an old ENDABlog post:

aprilnovember811

And everyone he’s hired needs the hard drive checked on the computer they used in the Federal Government, before they’re fired. There will be no explanation needed when they’re removed. They aren’t going to get away with placing radical marxists in Washington, thinking they will be able to stay and destroy the country more, even after these demons Obama and Holder are in prison. God willing.

Every computer hard drive in every government agency in and out of DC need to be examined. We need to know, exactly what they’ve been doing.

Any bets as to whether “april” was in favor of doing that even just to all of the CBN Regent U graduates that the Bush Junta illegally hired much less to everyone in the Bush Junta, particularly all of Darth Cheney’s buddies?

I didn’t think so.