Monday, March 15, 2010

I Am Angry

I'm going to lend my soapbox to John Cory today.  I wish I had written this.

If you agree with this essay, please sign the petition.  Please make sure people in Washington know how you feel- both Dems and Republicans.  If we don't speak out and speak up, they will think we are okay with all this, and I dare say folks who are reading this blog are not okay with any of this.  Thanks John Cory!

am angry.
I'm tired of pundits and know-nothing media gasbags. I'm tired of snarky "inside politics" programming. I am sick of the bigotry and hatred of "birthers" and faux patriotic cranks and their GOP puppet masters. And I'm really pissed at the Democratic Party that confuses having a plate of limp noodles with having a spine.
I'm going to vomit if I hear the word "bipartisanship" one more time.
It was "bipartisanship" that gave us this activist conservative Supreme Court. A Supreme Court that says money is free speech and corporations are persons except when real people try to hold them accountable for their greed and poisonous ways.
"Bipartisanship" gave us the Patriot Act and FISA and illegal wiretaps and two wars and "free speech zones" and "no fly" lists. God bless bipartisan America.
I get nauseated every time the Senate explains how it takes a super majority to do anything for the American people. Tell you what Senate Bozos, if it takes 60 votes to pass legislation then it should take 60% of the popular vote to get you elected.
When some Tea Party crank says, "I want my country back," I respond, "No madam, you want your country backward."
When a deficit-mongering politician says, "How do we pay for this?" Why not ask, "What did you Republicans do with the surplus we Democrats left you?"
When a compassionate conservative says, "Healthcare reform is socialism," why not answer, "No, sir it is the moral and American way to care for people."
Yes, I can hear it now: "You are naïve and simplistic. These are complicated matters and require sophisticated solutions. Democrats are a big tent and strive for balance. But Republicans block our path at every turn. We are thinking and considering new ways to work in harmony with everyone."
Bite me.
The only thing you get with "harmony" is a Barbershop Quartet.
Democrats stop being Republican Lite. Stop whining about that mean GOP and their nasty messaging. Grow a pair, get a message, get a bumper sticker and hang it out there. Get some strong vivid talking points.
G-O-P = Greed Over People.
Greed Kills - jobs, people and the economy.
Terrorism is Viagra for Republicans: The more fear - the more excited they get.
When a soldier dies for America, who dares ask if they were gay or straight?
Don't act so shocked, Democratic Party. Have you looked around lately?
You're losing the young vote that showed up to elect Obama. You're losing those old enough to remember real Democrats. Why? Because you don't talk to them any more than you talk to me. You talk at me. You talk around me. You talk down to me. You talk about me. You don't talk with me. And you don't inspire and you don't champion and without that you are nothing more than an arbitrator of compromise and abdication.
You are facing a bully. Deal with it!
Republicans want the country backwards. They champion superstition over science because it entrenches ignorance and bigotry and captures the easily frightened.
Republicans treat the Constitution the way they treat the Bible, with selective interpretation and selective application to others while exempting themselves from judgment and accountability.
Republicans preach the gospel of fear because fear is darkness and darkness covers their theft of civil liberties and Constitutional principles.
For thirty years the Republican Party has claimed the mantle of law and order but now quake in dread of the American judicial system when putting terrorists on trial. How criminal is that?
Torture is illegal. Period. John Wayne and Jack Bauer were not our Founding Fathers - only in the make-believe world of Republican drugstore-patriots.
DADT needs to be repealed. Now. It is unconscionable, immoral, and disgusting.
Empathy, compassion and equality are not pejoratives. They are American values proven again and again throughout our history.
Republicans believe that bake-sales and cookies for chemotherapy best determine the value of life and healthcare because life is a pre-existing condition and the "free market" should not have to take on such a high risk - after all, no one gets out alive, so why should the corporation be left holding the bag? Unless of course the price is right.
Republicans believe that government should keep its hands off healthcare but should put its hands inside a woman's body.
Republicans believe in small government - small enough to hold the "right" people and small enough to be owned and operated by the "right" people. And who are the "right" people? Them. Not you.
Democratic Party, DNC, DLCC, DSCC or whatever your acronym - I have only one question for you: Really?
You can't win against these guys? You can't get your message out against these guys? You can't give America leadership against these guys?

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Shocking! Anti-gay Republican State Senator reveals he is gay!

Roy Ashburn is a California State Senator "proudly serving the 18th District of California", the largest in California, encompassing Kern, Tulare, Inyo, and San Bernardino counties. That is about the most conservative part of our great state, not that there is anything wrong with that.  That Ashburn is known as an anti-gay politician is not a surprise knowing the district he represents. Ashburn's record according to the Fresno Bee
Ashburn, who is in his last year representing a bedrock conservative region that includes most of Tulare County, organized a Traditional Values Coalition rally in Bakersfield in 2005 to support a proposed constitutional amendment that year to prohibit gay marriage.
At a 2004 rally in Fresno, Ashburn criticized Democrat Jim Costa for supporting domestic partnerships. The two were squaring off in a congressional race that Costa ended up winning.
Ashburn also touted his support for Proposition 22, a ballot initiative that defined marriage as between a man and a woman, calling himself a co-sponsor of the 2000 measure.
Equality California, a gay rights group, gave Ashburn a "zero percent" for his 2009 voting record.
Ashburn voted against bills that included expanding California's mental health services for gay youth and measures to protect gay prisoners from violence -- which won some GOP votes -- and creating a day to honor slain gay activist Harvey Milk.

Ashburn has said he didn't believe he had been a staunch anti-gay activist, insisting the way he had voted on social issues reflected his constituents' views.  Ah, and therein lies the rub.

Ashburn was arrested on drunk driving charges while driving his state-issued vehicle and while leaving a gay bar in Sacramento.  He immediately took a few days leave to reflect and upon his return, revealed that he was a homosexual.  The LA Times reported that Ashburn said "I am gay,"  "Those are the words that have been so difficult for me for so long. But I am gay. But it is something that is personal and . . . I felt with my heart that being gay didn't affect -- wouldn't affect -- how I did my job.

I emphatically agree with West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon, an openly gay Democrat, when he said  "I don't think it's a scandal for an elected official to be gay,  I do think it is hypocritical to know that you are gay and pretend that you are straight. It has to be difficult, period.  But especially when you are a public servant, where is the trust when the truth is revealed?

I understand that the Senator is not running for re-election and that's probably just as well.  I imagine he has some very serious conversations in front of him with his family and friends.   Roy Ashburn says that he felt with his heart that being gay did not or would not affect how he did his job, but he was wrong.  Who you are, regardless of race, creed, gender, or culture will affect everything in your life. Every vote he made against human rights, every time he spoke out against gay rights had to have a visceral affect on him.  The bottom line, though, is would his district have elected him had they known his sexual preference?   I think we know the answer to that and I think Roy Ashburn did too.