Monday, July 24, 2017

We Need To Pass A Law.

We cannot let this happen here in Connecticut, we need to pass a law banning trans or gay panic legal defenses in criminal trials.
Ex-Navy sailor gets 40 years for killing transgender woman
CBS News
By Crimesider Staff AP
July 21, 2017

PASCAGOULA, Miss. - A former Navy sailor has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for the 2016 stabbing death of a transgender woman in Mississippi.

Dwanya Hickerson, 21, pleaded guilty Thursday to murder in the killing of Dee Whigham in a St. Martin hotel room on July 23. Hickerson will also have to serve 15 years for a robbery charge. He could have faced the death penalty if he had gone to trial on the original charge of capital murder.

Autopsy results show Whigham, 25, was stabbed 119 times. Many of the wounds were to the victim's face, and her throat was slashed three times.
And why did he stab her in such a brutal way?
Hickerson said in court Thursday that he and Whigham had been chatting online for a couple of months but had never met in person. He said they decided to meet while she was in Biloxi with friends.

He said Whigham picked him up at the gate of Keesler and the two went straight to the hotel where Whigham was staying. He said after they had a form of sex at the hotel, she told him she was a transgender woman.

"I lost. I lost it," he said, saying he really didn't remember much afterward.
First, we do not know if she told him before their encounter because she is dead and we only have the word of the killer to go by. How many times do we hear that the murder knew she was trans before they had sex but when his friends find out that he is dating a trans women he goes and kills her to protect his reputation.

Second, why should we have to tell anyone that we are trans? That assumes that being trans is something terrible and somehow disgraceful.

We need here in Connecticut a law banning trans or gay panic legal defenses, but not only trans/gay panic defenses but also medical, religion or race panic defenses.

It should be not legal for someone kill a person and then say that they did it because they found out the person was a Muslim or black or had a communicable disease.

It’s the Courts We Have To Worry About.

What Trump does can be undone once we get the Republicans out of office, but the judges are another thing all together.
Republicans think blogger who calls gays ‘faggots’ should be a federal judge
LGBTQ Nation
By Jeff Taylor
July 14, 2017

Senate Republicans in the Senate Judiciary Committee have pushed through the nomination of a federal judge with anti-LGBTQ views, and a worrying blogging history.

John Bush has been nominated by President Trump to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals and was confirmed by the Senate on Thursday with an 11-9 vote.

Bush writes under the pen name G. Morris for his wife‘s blog, Elephants in the Bluegrass, where he has shown support for a sign promising violence against Obama supporters who might steal an opposing campaign sign, compared abortion to slavery, and backed the conspiracy theory that former president Obama was born in Kenya.

He also wrote a post critical of the State Department‘s decision to change passport applications to refer to parents in a gender-neutral way, as “Mother or Parent 1” and “Father or Parent 2.”
“I come here every year, and let me tell you one thing I’ve learned — this is no town to be giving people the impression you’re some kind of faggot,” Bush said, quoting Thompson.
He is going to be a Federal judge with life tenure; he could be on the bench for 20 or 30 years! And there are over a hundred judicial appointments pending! The Republicans sat on President Obama’s judicial appointments just so they can pack the courts.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Another Step Toward Bigotry.

Down in Texas despite all the comments by big business, the tourist industry, and the clergy against the bill to deny us a place to pee, the Republicans forge ahead.
Texas Senate committee approves transgender bathroom bill
By Chuck Lindell
July 21, 2017

During an 11-hour hearing that lasted into the night, the Capitol rang once again Friday with voices debating legislation to ban transgender-friendly bathroom policies by local governments and public schools.

And although most witnesses spoke against Senate Bill 3, the Senate State Affairs Committee voted 8-1 to send it to the full Senate, which could vote as early as Monday. All Republicans on the committee voted in favor, as did Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr., D-Brownsville. The only no vote came from Sen. Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo.

Sometimes tearful, sometimes angry during this year’s third public hearing on the subject, transgender Texans and parents of transgender children told the committee that limiting bathroom use to the sex listed on a person’s birth certificate would target a vulnerable population for harassment, isolation and discrimination.

“What about my safety? There are people out there who hate me,” said Ashley Smith, a transgender woman who said the two bills by Sen. Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham, would force her to use the men’s restroom even though she looks nothing like a man.
The Republican governor and the Republican legislature just want to jam this bill through and they don’t care about any repercussions. The only thing that may save us is the Republican Speaker of the House who is against this bill, he has said that,
“I’m not a lawyer, but I am a Texan,” said Straus, according to the magazine. “I’m disgusted by all this. Tell the lieutenant governor I don’t want the suicide of a single Texan on my hands.”
An article in The Hill said,
Bathroom bill opens deep rift in Texas GOP
By Reid Wilson
July 18, 2017
AUSTIN, Texas — A proposal to ban transgender people from using the bathroom or locker room of their choice has sparked a legislative hostage crisis among Texas Republicans, exposing an ongoing rift between populists who align themselves with President Trump and more traditional, business-oriented conservatives.
That bill is a top priority of Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R), an arch conservative who runs the state Senate and who served as Trump’s Texas campaign chairman.

But the state House, led by Speaker Joe Straus (R), refused to pass the bathroom bill during the chamber’s regular session, amid opposition from some of the state’s largest employers, sports leagues and civil rights groups. Straus endorsed former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush in the 2016 GOP presidential primary.
So will Speaker Straus hold his ground or will he cave into pressure or will he finagle a political plum from the governor? So stay tune to the same bat-channel for more of the continuing saga of Texas’s attempts to force us back into the closet.

I Never Saw This Coming!

In the past Gov. Christie has vetoed similar bills and I thought he would veto this bill also, but I was wrong.
Christie signs bill to create bathroom, other rights for transgender students
By Brent Johnson
July 22, 2017

TRENTON -- Transgender students at New Jersey's public schools were given new layers of protection under a bill that Gov. Chris Christie signed into law Friday.

The legislation (S3067/A4652) -- which takes effect immediately -- charges the state commissioner of education with creating specific guidelines to help schools address "the needs" of transgender students and establish policies that "ensure a supportive and nondiscriminatory environment" for those students.

Schools would be expressly told that they cannot force transgender students to use bathrooms or locker rooms that conflict with their gender identity. Instead, schools would be be mandated to provide "reasonable alternative arrangements" for those students.

Schools would also be required to make sure transgender students are addressed by the name and pronoun they prefer, regardless of whether a legal name change has occurred.

The law also tells schools they must allow students to dress according to their gender identity, create confidentiality plans to make sure employees do not disclose a student's transgender or transition status, issues school documents and identification cards to make the student's gender identity, and let students take part in gym class with the gender that matches their identity.
Any guesses on what the Christian right had to say about the bill?
New Jersey Family Policy Council, a conservative group that champions family values, spoke out heavily against the Democratic-sponsored measure.
Sorry Charlie, your fear mongering didn’t work.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Saturday 9: Don't Stop

Crazy Sam’s Saturday 9: Don't Stop (1977)... because Country Dew recommended Fleetwood Mac 

On Saturdays I take a break from the heavy stuff and have some fun…
Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) Since we're not supposed to stop thinking about tomorrow, let's talk about it: What are your plans for Sunday?
Well, now that we don’t have the cottage the weekends are boring. I don’t have any plans for Sunday.

2) Fleetwood Mac was formed 50 years ago in London. Fifty years is considered a "golden anniversary." Do you wear more silver or gold?
Um… does gold plating count? If so, I have more gold than silver.

3) This song is from Rumours, which has sold 40 million copies. Is it in your collection?
Of course.

4) It was written by keyboardist and vocalist Christine McVie. She was born Christine Perfect, a name that earned her a fair share of teasing when she was a school girl. Do you recall being teased in school? What about?
Of course, anyone who wore glasses was “four eyes” and I was a nerd before the word “nerd” even existed.

5) Before Fleetwood Mac, she was in a band called Chicken Shack. If you were to order out for a chicken dinner, which restaurant would you turn to?
That is a hard question to answer. Here in town we have a choice of Italian or Chinese, we are seriously lacking in take-out choices. So to answer your question it would be Chicken Parmigiana from the pizza joint just a block away.

6) Before she could pay all her bills with her music, she supported herself as a window dresser for a London department store. Do you enjoy walking along, just window shopping? Or do you consider "looking with no intention to buy" a waste of time?
Yes, and yes. I like a walking buddy and I don’t like window shopping.

7) When she found herself making big money, one of the first things Christine bought was a pair of matching Mercedes for herself and then-husband, John McVie. If you were handed a check for $1 million, what's the first thing you would do with the money?
Call my broker.
Then rent a big yacht and throw a big party.

8) The other girl in Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks, founded the Soldier's Angel Foundation. She believes in the healing power of music, and so she's proud to provide wounded soldiers with iPods already loaded with music. When you listen to music from your phone, MP3 player or iPod, do you use ear buds or headphones?
It depends upon where. Inside the house I wouldn’t wear them but outside on the deck I wear noise cancelling headphones.

9) Random question: Let's pretend your high school reunion is coming up. Which classmate are you more curious about: the one who was your first date, or the one who was too cool to give you the time of day?
The one who I had my first date with. I always wondered how she is doing, the last I heard she was married and working at a small pharmaceutical out San Francisco.