Friday, July 25, 2014

A peek in the mirror

You know how you're having a nice day, and then you walk past a mirror in your house -- and see a pair of jockey shorts draped over your shoulder?

And you realize that you put them there when you were folding the laundry three hours ago?

And then it hits you that you've just gone to the library and the supermarket looking like this?

Glamour. It's so elusive! Stay classy, people. I always do.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

I can't breathe

That phrase - "I can't breathe" - has become a rallying cry against police abuse in NYC. I'm sure you've seen the story on the news. Eric Garner was simply engaging in a common poverty-economy practice -- selling single cigarettes to earn a few bucks -- when the police attacked him and caused his death.

I hope you've seen the video. You can clearly hear Mr. Garner saying, "I can't breathe! I can't breathe!" as the police continue to hold him by his neck and put pressure on his chest. They killed him. There's no two ways about it. And for what? For selling loose cigarettes, as thousands of people do every day in NYC? That's a crime that deserves the death penalty?

I thought about Eric Garner yesterday as I suffered my second attack of being unable to breathe. It's only happened twice to me and I don't know what causes it. It's terrifying. It's as if my lungs cannot use the air, as if there's no oxygen in it. And it makes me feel desperate and wonder if I'm going to die.

My second attack happened outside a medical clinic, as I was on my way to an allergy doctor to find out why this happens to me. And as soon as someone realized I couldn't breathe, a "code yellow" was called and five medical professionals rushed toward me with a wheelchair, oxygen, etc. They put me on a machine to help me breathe and within an hour I felt fine.

But all the while, I heard Eric Garner's voice saying, "I can't breathe! I can't breathe!" I couldn't help but contrast the comforting response of the people around me, with the callous and inhumane actions of the police and EMS staff who surrounded Mr. Garner and simply watched him die.

Eric Garner is black and I'm white. And he was unlucky enough to have this happen while he was surrounded by NYPD officers who didn't give a damn whether he lived or died. They're not only the police -- they're the new militarized version of the police that has cropped up in NYC since 9/11. These officers see civilians as the enemy. And apparently you don't help the enemy, especially if he has brown skin.

It's so wrong. I'm fine today and Eric Garner is dead. Why? And if it's just his race, then we are not living in a civilized country. We're all supposed to be equal here. Where were the caregivers to help this man? Why did EMS workers not intercede when they heard his cries for help? And why did the officers not lift themselves off him when they heard he was having trouble breathing? Why?

Something has to change. We are all equal. It's just that some monsters don't recognize this. I don't want people like that to be handed a badge or a medical license. I hope many officers go to prison for a good, long time for what they did  to this man.

And by the way, he was a good man. Everyone says he was a gentle giant who would help anyone with anything. All you had to do was ask. The police murdered a teddy bear, not a criminal. And they should pay for this.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

More harm from religion

Okay, so the article I'm about to quote was at HuffPo. But hey, it's got links to real articles so I think we can trust it.
Young children who are exposed to religion have a hard time differentiating between fact and fiction, according to a new study published in the July issue of Cognitive Science.
Gee, what a surprise.
Refuting previous hypotheses claiming that children are “born believers,” the authors suggest that “religious teaching, especially exposure to miracle stories, leads children to a more generic receptivity toward the impossible, that is, a more wide-ranging acceptance that the impossible can happen in defiance of ordinary causal relations.”
Put simply, religious thinking poisons the mind. Personally, the thing I hate most is seeing a story about religious parents who kill their kids to send them to "a better place". Ahem, that would be the grave. A poisoned mind is capable of terrible things.

I often say that religion is the reason why Americans can't think clearly. They've had no practice in logic because their brains were poisoned at an early age by religious nonsense.

There is no heaven, there is no hell, there is no god or devil. And that's why we should try our best to be kind to everyone we meet (including those kids at the border). Since there's no afterlife for those who suffer here on Earth, what say we try to avoid the suffering in the first place? Works for me.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Uh...that explanation won't fly

I assume my readers know all about Chris Kluwe and his stellar GLBT activism. Great guy, well-spoken. And of course he was fired from an NFL team because of it.

Apparently the Vikings supplied this strange statement in their defense:
The Vikings lawyers claims that although Preifer said we should “nuke… all the gays,” he was otherwise completely respectful of LGBT people and those advocating on their behalf.
I'm like, totally sure this is accurate. Totally. Aren't you?

This has been your daily exercise in "Explanations that don't work".

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Communion on the moon. Oy.

This actually happened.
As Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin prepared to take "one small step for man," Aldrin wanted to commemorate the moment in a way he found most personally meaningful -- by taking communion.
You know you want to read the full story. Damn, and it's Sunday and everything.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Studies suggest...

Studies suggest that many people reading this blog are not actually alive. These "people" are zombies. This is something up with which I cannot put. Thus I must determine if you, the person reading this, are alive. But how can I do this?

Wait a minute! I'll bet zombies can't get through the captcha verification system (those squiggly letters you have to decipher in order to post a comment). That's the ticket! Okay here's the deal. If you are not a zombie...prove it by commenting on this post.

UPDATE

I posted this two minutes ago and there hasn't been one comment yet. OMD, it's true -- you're all zombies!

I may have to rethink my blog in light of this new information. I'll get back to you.

And no religion, too

More good news:
President Obama plans to sign an executive order on Monday that protects gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees from discrimination by companies that do federal government work, fulfilling a promise to a crucial Democratic constituency, White House officials said on Friday. But the directive will not exempt religious groups, as many of them had sought.
It's that last bit in bold that's the super good news. I am so sick of religious gits attacking gay people and using their god for cover. God wants them to be cruel to gay and transgender people. It's their duty.

Screw your duty. You're just hateful loons. Kudos to Obama for not letting contractors discriminate against gays by using a religious back-door. Let's get rid of all those back doors. Hate is hate. And if your religion tells you to hate gays and transgender people, your religion is scum.