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« September 2012 | Main | November 2012 »

Front Page » Monthly Archives » October 2012

By Diane Wahto on October 31, 2012

Wichita, Kansas—The following is from my friend Tom Rambo:

There are things that have been weighing heavily on my mind, and I feel the need to share them, because politics appears to be obscuring certain realities that shouldn’t require clarification, but apparently do. These are issues concerning women and they are important to me because I’m a husband of 40 years, a father of two daughters and a wonderful daughter-in-law, and because of the many women in my life who are cousins, friends and co-workers. These issues, however, should be important to everyone. Second, we men don’t get to determine what defines rape as “legitimate.” Rape is rape, and all men need to get that through their heads. I would say that men have no concept of the demeaning nature of rape, but I suppose we could ask men who were raped in prison if there is a question regarding the legitimacy of the act or not, because I’m sure they would have an opinion. For the most part, rape is an act of violence and has nothing to do with sexual satisfaction.

Sometimes men will try to excuse their actions by saying, “She said no, but she didn’t really mean it.” Raging testosterone seems to cause some men to make bad decisions. However, that’s not an excuse. Here’s a fact, people - If a woman says no, and you keep going, it’s not consensual. “Date” rape doesn’t make it any less of a rape; it merely defines the circumstances.

Women are not here to amuse men or simply satisfy our sexual needs, so men need to quit acting like it. There is no such thing as raping somebody just a little bit; rape is rape. In addition, if a woman is raped, nobody but that particular woman gets to decide what she’s going to do about it. Telling her she has no choice in the matter is emotional rape. She is violated twice and neither time, has any say in the matter? Excuse me, but that is bullshit!

Third, women are entitled to every right as citizens of the United States that men are, and that includes equal pay. My daughters and my wife are amazing, intelligent women. They are more than capable of making their way in the world and taking care of themselves financially. They should be paid just as much as any male counterpart. Moreover, as a father and husband, I will tell you this. You will respect wife and my daughters, and their role in the workforce. If you don’t, they have every right to call you out on it. There are not rights for men and different rights for women. Equal rights are for everyone, period.

In this current political season, women’s issues have been front and center and I am still stunned at the attempts many Republican candidates are making to diminish women and deny them control of their own destinies. It’s not right, it’s not legal and it’s not moral. Any man who would vote for Todd Akin and those like him should never look another woman in the eye again, particularly his wife or daughter, because his vote says “I have no respect for you as a human being”. In addition, any woman who would vote for Todd Akin and those like him, well, I don’t know how she could ever look at herself in the mirror again, because her vote says, “I have no respect for myself.”

Electing misogynistic assholes and placing them in positions of power is disrespectful to women and it sends a message to men that women are somehow less important than they are, and that some rapes are OK because they're not "legitimate" rapes. If that’s OK with you, then you should be ashamed of yourself.

October 2012

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By Ken Poland on October 27, 2012

You have the freedom to stay poor! But you don't deserve the compasssion or help from the wealthy to relieve your poverty. Government only exists to protect the property and wealth of those who are fortunate enough to have hit it lucky in business or inherited a windfall. The constitutional right to the pursuit of happiness and wellbeing only means to apply to those who are happy and well off. Freedom of Religion is only freedom for those whose Christian philosopy agrees with the 'white Anglo-Saxon' controlled entities.

Rima RegasMission Viejo, CA Verified NYT Pick FLAG If a bus full of very eloquent nuns and a binder-full of letters from bishops weren't enough to trump the glory of high political office and bring Paul Ryan back to the Catholic fold, nothing ever will. Paul Ryan may like to call himself a Catholic but his real religion is the GOP.

The GOP has its own canon, one where wrong is right and right is socialist. A canon whereby a child is conceived even before a sex act has taken place. A canon where victims are at fault and must be forever punished, at their own cost. A canon where rape is from G-d and a child is only sacred when it is in the womb. A canon where there is no responsibility to society. A canon where pooling one's resources is deemed to be a form of slavery and being left on your own is valued and called freedom.

How can Catholicism or any other religion, for that matter, compete with this utter selfishness and glorification of dishonesty? The GOP has not only perfected the game of rigging politics, they've come up with their own religion.

Paul Ryan thinks we're all fish and he's not going to feed us. Remember that, people!
Oct. 24, 2012 at 8:45 p.m.REPLYRECOMMEND1182

I liked this comment. Rima said it better than I could and certainly exposed the misconception of Ryan and the GOP as being champions of the underprivilieged and poor folks. Their entire program is based on the theory that the wealthy will somehow let enough crumbs fall from their tables to sustain the starving misfits that plague their 'gated' society.

There are certainly some folks who will not lift their fingers to help themselves, but they are a minority among those in society who need a helping hand. The majority of those 47% that Romeny belittles are honest deserving folks who lived decent lives and contributed to the social environment that made community a worthwhile place to live.

By Angelo Lopez on October 21, 2012

Thanks Ken. I agree with what you wrote. Religious and sectarian extremists have always tried to get rid of moderates to try to get their way. You've written in past blogs about your troubles with Christian extremists. Radicals are important, but so are moderates.

By Ken Poland on October 20, 2012

Angelo, I really appreciate your insight and diligent research. Of course, the fact that I agree, for the most part, with your social and political positions might influence my appreciation a little. Nevertheless, keep up your good work and didication to EVERYDAY CITITZEN.

You point out that it is the radicals who have persisted and brought about changes. That is true. The problem we have today is that we have no moderate middle ground folks. When the radical, by shear force is able to control, justice goes out the window. Extreme measures are taken and the 'silent majority' are left holding the pieces of a torn society. Radical extremists, whether religious or sectarian seldom consider the impact of their narrow definition of rights for all of society. Religious zealots and extremists are more concerned about the hereafter and their role in deciding who will be where when that time comes. Their hereafter does not include the immediate present and individual diversity. The sectarians are usually concerned more for the immediate advantages for themselves, even at the expense of others, and have no concern about the future here on earth or the hereafter.

We have a strange coalition of religious extremist and the, honestly, sectarian method of advancing themselves by ignoring the masses of humanity who have little power or influence to protect themselves.

By Angelo Lopez on October 20, 2012

Recently I watched on the internet a movie preview of the upcoming Steven Spielberg movie on Abraham Lincoln. I'm really looking forward to this film, as Spielberg is one of my favorite filmmakers and Lincoln is my favorite President. In this election season, it's especially appropriate that we look at Abraham Lincoln and his presidency, as many historians and presidential scholars consider Lincoln to be one of our best Presidents. I've read a lot of books on Lincoln, and one of the things that I most admire about Lincoln was his capacity to listen and grow as he was exposed to the radical abolitionists, the freed slaves, the African American soldiers of the Union Army. His capacity to grow helped Lincoln to be the leader who was able to preserve the union and to abolish slavery from this country.

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By Angelo Lopez on October 15, 2012

During my time in the Association of American Editorial Cartoonist convention last month, I learned from other cartoonists about an issue that I had not been paying much attention to. During a session where the cartoonists met two members of Congress, several cartoonists confronted Republican House Whip Kevin McCarthy on the efforts of the Republican Party to pass laws that would suppress certain voter groups in several states in the country. I had read a little of this issue, but before then, I was more concerned about the spending of Super Pacs and its effect on the national and state elections. After the session was over, I talked to a few cartoonists who gave me more details about the voter suppression laws that are being passed across the nation. Many of these laws are being passed in swing states that could be deciding factors in the election. After doing a little research, I found that many groups are fighting these voter suppression laws across the nation.

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By Angelo Lopez on October 12, 2012

Last month, I had a wonderful time attending the convention of the Associaton of American Editorial Cartoonists in Washington D.C. It was a great time to meet political cartoonists from all over the nation and to explore Washington D.C. for the first time. I was in awe of the monuments and the museums that are dedicated to the spirit of America. My friends the Liebermans told me wonderful stories about when they visited the capital, and they inspired me to want to see all the great sites that make up Washington D.C. I was not disappointed. The Liebermans were the ones that inspired me to want to travel and explore this wonderful country. They told me that I won't get a full appreciation of this country until I travel and see all the states and talk to people and observe for myself just how diverse this country is. Just like Jefferson Smith in the movie "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington", I walked and visited the monuments and felt a great pride in America's high ideas.

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By Ken Poland on October 5, 2012

It will be a surprise to him, too. He flits from limb to limb like a song bird.

All his talk about 'bi-partisan' is silly. How was Pres. Obama to work bi-partisan, when the Republicans promised from day one that he would not get anything from them! If he wins (oh no!) and the Democrats work like the Republicans did, he won't get anything done, either.

All they have in their sack of surprises is promises of lowering income tax to stimulate the economy and roll back regulations more yet. If the 47% he talked about are not paying taxes now and they can't buy anything they don't need for their basic existence, how is lowering income taxes on the rich going to simulate the economy and produce all the millions of jobs he is promising? The rich are already buying about anything they want, so what are they going to buy that will create all the demand that requires more employment?

I said the invasion of Iraq would be about as successful as trying to stomp out an ant hill with your bare feet. And I'm of the same opinion concerning Afganistan and Iran. We are not going to establish any successful democracies in the middle East that are friendly to the U.S. Israel is friendly only as long as we support their agenda and furnish them with military support. We gave them nuclear weapons and now they are demanding that we stop any other nuclear development in the mid East. I was in favor of pushing Iraq and Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait and thought Bush, Sr was wise in rejecting the war hawks demand that we move in and take over Iraq.

Romney takes great pride in the health care law he signed into law as governor, but declares the same bill as being a total disaster for the nation. Figure that out, if you can. Does he even recognize himself when he looks in a mirror?

He campaigns like he was vying for a CEO position in a company. He forgets that he won't be able to just make policy without regard to stockholders or even his board of directors.

By Peter Herbert on October 5, 2012

Great analysis, Darrell. Concerning the upcoming debates, I wonder: what is the much touted Romney foreign policy surprise going to be? Buzz on the Internet is that it will be a promise to bring back torture. If so, that hardly counts as a surprise, since all signs so far indicate that he plans to rely on former Bush/Cheney folks to run his foreign policy. (Sickeningly, experts on undecided voters say that a return to torture will appeal to many of them.)

I doubt the buzz. I predict that Romney will borrow a page from Nixon’s successful 1968 campaign: he will announce a grand plan to get us out of Afghanistan both sooner, and with greater success and honor, than Obama’s plan. The proposal will be thin on details, since those of course have to be secret (like the details of his economic plans). I further guess that he already has right wing generals and foreign policy people lined up and ready to say that it’s a great plan and they know how to get it done. Obviously, they will say that they would have won in Afghanistan already, if only Obama had let them. That is essentially what Nixon did in the 1968 election, regarding the Vietnam War. It got him elected. Whether it will work for Romney I don’t know. This election is far more about the economy and far less about foreign policy than 1968. But it is the best foreign policy shot the Romney Campaign can take.

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By Darrell Hamlin on October 4, 2012

As a media event that both campaigns hoped to leverage for narrative and momentum, it is clear that GOP nominee Mitt Romney had a very good night in the first debate of the 2012 presidential election. Media coverage will move in a Mitt-favorable direction, tightening the race and raising the stakes for all the debates to follow. Romney’s energetic performance -- relative to the sleepwalk President Obama delivered – will change the conservative critique of his campaign from a deathwatch to a pep rally. Now it is Obama’s base of support that will struggle with disappointment in their nominee, and things will stay this way until events change the channel.

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