Archive for the ‘National’ Category

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How is that possibly necessary?!

March 29, 2010

Thankfully, I have only been pulled over twice so far for speeding (within a few months of each other, no less, but that was 3 years ago). Both were scary experiences. The first time I was pulled over on Whitney Avenue by a New Haven police officer, and the second was a CT State Trooper on I-91 South.

The New Haven officer was so nasty to me. I tried to explain to him that I had never been pulled over before, that I didn’t think I was speeding, and that I was very sorry. And for the record, I really don’t think I was speeding. He didn’t care at all for what I was saying or that I was hysterically crying. He screamed at me and threw the ticket in my face. At least the state trooper was nice and tried to make me feel better.

Anyone who has been pulled over for any reason knows that it’s not a pleasant experience. Now imagine what it must have been like for a pregnant woman in Seattle who was tasered after she refused to sign a speeding ticket. Oh, I wish I was kidding, folks. And best of all, the federal appeals court said IT WAS OKAY. Um, what?!

Is it really necessary to send electric voltage into a 7-months-pregnant woman sitting helplessly in her car? I think not. Did she attack the officers? No. Was she armed? Not unless a Buddha belly counts as a deadly weapon. What possible justification is there for tasering this woman? Please, someone, explain it to me!

Do you think the officers were in the right when they tasered the pregnant woman? Why or why not? What is your definition of “excessive force?”

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Why shouldn’t she bring her girlfriend?!

March 11, 2010

Oh, this makes me angry, people. Brace yourselves.

According to MSNBC, a Mississippi school has canceled the prom after female student Constance McMillen wanted to bring her girlfriend as her date. Both students attended the school. It seems school officials would rather deny all students the chance to go rather than allow two people to go together.

Let me break this down a little here. One of your students wants to take another student to the prom, right? Sounds fairly standard to me. But wait – they’re lesbians? Nevermind, no can do. You have to take someone of the opposite sex with you (according to their school district policy).

That is ridiculous, for a variety of reasons. From what I’ve read this seems to be a public school with no religious affiliation. Are they trying to claim that being gay is wrong somehow? Says who? If people disagree with it, fine, but they should still be allowed to go together.

What about people who would just want to go with their friends? Does everyone who attends have to have a date? Would they be turned away if they went alone? What if someone brought a cousin of the opposite sex – would they be turned away because they’re related? Just how detailed are these policies?

The article also says that McMillen was also told she couldn’t wear a tuxedo. They can tell students how to dress now? It’s not like she wanted to show up naked or in a barely-there skimpy dress. She would be completely covered up. How can they possibly justify requiring women to wear dresses?

I would love to hear how the other students feel about the situation. Hopefully, they will all pull a Footloose and hold their own prom anyway. Maybe they will even crown McMillen and her date Prom King and Queen. That would rock. I’d vote for you, ladies!

Do you think a public school has the right to say who people can bring to a dance? Should they be able to restrict clothing choices to within stereotypical gender roles?

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More history in the making

January 5, 2010

Today is a big day in Washington, D.C. A new face will grace the halls of the Department of Commerce as Amanda Simpson takes over as Senior Technical Advisor in the Bureau of Industry and Security. So what makes this woman significant? She was born a man.

Simpson will become the first transgender person appointed to executive office by a president (read more here). Wow, that’s huge. In a country where most states don’t allow gay and lesbian people to legally marry their partners, our president has decided to appoint someone who not only has all of the qualifications necessary to hold her position, but who is also a major player in the GLBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender) movement.

Kudos to you, President Obama, for taking this step in a very positive direction. And best of luck to you, Ms. Simpson, as you step into the history books. Just don’t let the “novelty” of the situation distract you from your post. You wouldn’t want to add any more fuel to the anti-GLBT fires.