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« January 2011 | Main | March 2011 »

Front Page » Monthly Archives » February 2011

By Angelo Lopez on February 23, 2011

During the 2008 election year, one of the biggest political fights in the California state ballot was on Proposition 8, a proposition against gay marriage. Sadly, the proposition passed. One of the keys to the passage of Proposition 8 was the efforts of the Mormon church, the Evangelical church, and the Catholic church to lobby its members to vote for the measure. A friend of mine told me that two weeks before the elections, the pastor in the evangelical church that he attends in Cupertino had a sermon against gay marriage.

After the elections results, many gay rights activists went on marches to protest Prop 8. In anger, some activists vandalized Mormon, Evangelical and Catholic property. Though I was against Proposition 8, I was also against the vandalizing of Mormon, Evangelical and Catholic churches. I wrote a few blogs that you can read here, here, and here where I describe how there are Mormons, Evangelicals and Catholics who support LGBT rights. When I attended an Evangelical church, I met Evangelicals who either supported gay rights or had gay friends and family members and were bothered by how these friends and family members were treated by other people in the church. I worried that in their anger over the passage of Proposition 8, many gay activists would develope a prejudice against Mormons, Evangelicals and Catholics, when in fact there are many Mormons, Evangelicals and Catholics who support gay rights. I was also worried that attacks on the church would give conservative Mormons, Evangelicals and Catholics ammunition to marginalize their more liberal counterparts.

Read more from this post here ...

By Diane Wahto on February 21, 2011

Near the pond the horses stand.
The spotted mare with her brown foal.
The brown mares, bellies big.
They barely move and when they move
They touch, nose to quivering
flank. Cold spring mornings
when ice rims the pond, their breath
is rime. A road runs beside
the field, over a bridge, twists away.
The road never breaks
their ease of flesh, the gracious
distance of that field, that pond.

A note: I wrote this poem years ago. This is a scene I saw every morning when I drove through Kechi on my way to work. Right now, with all the turmoil here at home and around the world I wanted a moment of peace. This poem gives me that. I hope it does the same for you.

By Tatiana McKinney on February 18, 2011

Black History Month is usually a time to celebrate some of the most important figures in African-American Culture. Many Facebook and Twitter statuses have been dedicated to the life and work of some of the most important figures in History. The sad part of Black History Month is not that it celebrates African-American leaders, but that is also warns the opinions of some of the worlds "not-so-friendly" citizens; who could care less about African-Americans and their contributions to such a complex country.

Recently, the NAACP honored the Real Housewives of Atlanta for an Image Award. While most African-Americans enjoy the guilty pleasure of the rants and ravings of the African-Americans women depicted on the show, many do not believe they deserved an award for the obvious stereotypes displayed. Why should African-American women fighting and degrading themselves be deserving of such a historical honor? Hmmm...many are still trying to wrap their heads around it. Well, According to Colorlines, "The women from Elite Delta Force 3, a Los Angeles based all-black-female sketch comedy group, got together to give their own spin to Bravo’s hit “Real Housewives” series." In the parody-comedy sketch, The Elite Delta Force 3 feature Coretta Scott King, Rosa Parks, Betty Shabazz, Marilyn Monroe, Maya Angelou and Winnie Mandela.

Read more from this post here ...

By Ken Poland on February 14, 2011

I challenged the opponents of the Social Security System to justify their assault on the program. To date, I have seen only one brave soul who chose to respond. That response came with the same old charge of “Crammed down our throats”, “Saddling our Grandchildren with Debt”, “Unconstitutional”, and “Bankrupt” None of which are substantiated or plausible.

If the act was ‘crammed down our throats,' then, every resolution passed by Congress has been crammed, regardless of partisan sponsorship. It was debated, amended, rewritten, and passed by majority vote. It has been challenged in court several times and held to be constitutional. It has been self funded and self sustaining for over seventy years, and it is not bankrupt. There are still ‘surplus’ funds and current contributions are meeting the present demands drawn from the fund. It is true that unless an increase in the contributions is adopted, the demand claims will force the dipping into surplus funds, supposedly, held in Trust by the Treasury department. This will be necessary in the very near future, but someone with infinite wisdom has decided to stimulate the economy by cutting the wage earner’s contribution from 6.2% of eligible wages to 4.1%.

Read more from this post here ...

By Angelo Lopez on February 13, 2011

Over the past two years, the Tea Party has dominated the political discourse in American politics. In spite of my disagreements with them, I have a grudging respect for the way the Tea Party activists have become passionately involved in the political process and have taken part in organized protests to try to sway the American public to their way of thinking. I hope more progressives emulate that sort of activism.

Despite that grudging respect, I disagree with a lot of things that have emanated from the Tea Party. One of my biggest disagreements with the Tea Party has to do with the way they interpret the Constitution.

When I read a lot of what the Tea Party espouses about the Constitution and its philosophy of a limited federal government, I wonder if these people are confusing the Constitution with the Articles of Confederation.

Read more from this post here ...

By Ken Poland on February 11, 2011

I just read another op-ed column in a leading newspaper wherein the writer referred to Social Security (SS) benefits as being welfare. What is it that I don't understand about SS? SS has been targeted as a major cause in the unholy redistribution of wealth in our social system.

We have readers who consider themselves fundamentally conservative. Please come in and explain the rationale for identifying SS benefits as undeserved welfare. How does SS contribute to the National Debt? Where is the fraud that we hear so much about? Why is it that being entitled to receiving the benefits the program was designed to provide makes me an undeserving burden on society?

Please, please come in and respectfully explain to me what it is that I don't understand.

Read more from this post here ...

By Tatiana McKinney on February 8, 2011

Superbowl Sunday had it's highs and lows, especially for those of us who were rooting for the Pittsburgh Steelers (better luck next time boys), but through the entire phenomenon of commercials, the most controversial one comes from Pepsi. I was sure while watching this commercial that many black women were going to *roll their eyes* and immediately grab a computer to vent and complain to Pepsi for the subliminal lack of respect for black women.

If you don't remember the commercial, here is a little synopsis (the commercial is below for your viewing pleasure.. or whatever)

Well there is this African American women (of very few words) that commits to following her African-American husband (assumingly) around to reprimand him for things she doesn't approve. She kicks him at the restaurant when he orders fries instead of of a fruit cup, she dunks his head in a pie, puts soap in his mouth when he wants a hamburger, and here is the kicker... she gets seriously angry at him when he sees a beautiful "Caucasian-women" and tries to hit her man with the Pepsi can, but ends up hitting the girl instead.
So, after I saw this commercial I wasn't sure whether to vent to my roommate as we both looked flabbergasted at the TV or to just write a long complaint to Pepsi on the stereotypical images of black women that they just decided to glorify to the world. I figured blogging my frustration was one way to get off some steam.

Read more from this post here ...

By Ken Poland on February 5, 2011

"No matter how big the lie; repeat it often enough and the masses will regard it as the truth." - John F. Kennedy
Remember this every time you hear Social Security called an entitlement that needs to end or that Social Security is a major culprit in deficit spending and national debt accumulation.

By Ken Poland on February 4, 2011

What is happening in Egypt? What are we seeing in society around the world? Is it civilized and peaceful organization to right the wrongs of oppressive government? Is our massive industrial complex of war machine manufacturers quelling the physical violence around the world? Is our mighty unmatched military complex creating peace?

What do we have in our constitution that guarantees a better way? The first amendment to our constitution is the secret to a better way. Religion with its emotional and spiritual blackmail power, guaranteed by support of sovereign power of government is a powerful force when corrupt and conscienceless men are in control. Freedom of/from Religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and freedom of peaceful assembly are not available to most of the people held bondage by despotic rulers.

Here in Everyday Citizen and Kansas Free Press, we have a forum that allows exchange of opinion through the power of word and reason rather than rocks and bullets. We happen to be identified as being leftist or liberal. The right leaning and conservative folks have their outlets that give opportunity to exercise power and reason in the same way.

Read more from this post here ...

By Lola Wheeler on February 4, 2011

Are you looking for a job in the medical or healthcare field? In this job market, job seekers need good resources to reach the right employers and hiring agents. Here's a respected resource for those looking for employment in the healthcare, medical, biotech, managed care or hospital fields.

I personally know the author and can completely and confidently vouch for the professionalism and dependability of this publication and the firm that produces it.

Read more from this post here ...

By John Atlas on February 3, 2011

John F. Kennedy famously said: "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable."

With you I am watching the people of Egypt and other Arab nations try to step out from under the boot of tyranny. I hope it’s not too late for Obama to seek out and support the civic activists throughout the Middle East who want justice, and to live in a free society.

While many in the Islamic world, including those in the streets, are dangerous anti-American and anti-Israel religious fanatics, to the surprise of most Americans I bet, many others are concerned about getting things like good jobs and their children an education.

Many involved in the demonstrations are poor, factory workers and jobless. But also on the front lines are professors, members of soccer clubs, workers in human rights groups, and in places like the Al-Nakheel Association for Women and Children. They are journalists, lawyers, religious moderates, secular leftists, union organizers, bloggers, filmmakers and artists, some of whom, from their space in the civil society, have fought the despots, without much help from the United States, and usually paid dearly.

Read more from this post here ...

By Angelo Lopez on February 3, 2011

A few months ago I had written a post on religious people who have spoken in YouTube against homophobia. Since then, I have found in YouTube various houses of worship who have collectively taken a stand against bullying against LGBT youth. In here I'll post some of those YouTube videos.

Read more from this post here ...

By Angelo Lopez on February 2, 2011

I've always admired the Quakers. I admire the Quakers because they have always been among the first advocates of the various civil rights movements that have weaved its way through our American history: they were in the forefront of the abolitionist movement, the right of women to vote, and the antiwar movement. Around three years ago, I attended two Quaker services in San Jose, California, and found it to be a really meditative service. Though I eventually became an Episcopalian, my admiration for the Friends remains. The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker group that was founded in 1917 during World War I. Since its founding, the AFSC has continued to put Quaker values into action in our country and around the world.

Read more from this post here ...

By Beth Boisvert on February 2, 2011

What constitutes rape, exactly? This question is being discussed, on some level, over the news pages and in the blogosphere because of a phrase included in Bill H.R. 3, also known as "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act."

Sec. 309 reads:

‘TREATMENT OF ABORTIONS RELATED TO RAPE, INCEST, OR PRESERVING THE LIFE OF THE MOTHER.

‘The limitations established in sections 301, 302, 303, and 304 shall not apply to an abortion --
‘(1) if the pregnancy occurred because the pregnant female was the subject of an act of forcible rape or, if a minor, an act of incest; or
‘(2) in the case where the pregnant female suffers from a physical disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as certified by a physician, place the pregnant female in danger of death unless an abortion is performed, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself. (Emphasis mine).

Forcible rape. What does that imply?

Read more from this post here ...

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