Thursday, July 30, 2015

No African American Church is Sacred to Confederate Flag Lovers

If Confederate flag lovers would leave flags on the grounds of iconic and historic Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, so significant to the Civil Rights movement, then nothing is sacred to them. Two white men were caught on surveillance cameras placing the flags on the property. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. preached at the church.

The Rev. Raphael Warnock, senior pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church, called placing the flags on church grounds a "terroristic threat."

"This act by a cowardly and misguided individual or individuals is provocative to say the least. It ought to get the attention not only of black people but of freedom-loving people," he said. "To place Confederate flags on the campus of Ebenezer Baptist Church after this horrific act in Charleston, in the wake of all this happening in our country, whatever the message was, it was clearly not about heritage, it was about hate."

Monday, July 27, 2015

Boy Scout at their Jamborees - Do you have a gay leader?

What does a boy have to do, to try to find a Boy Scout troop who will accept his father who is gay, even though the troop is far away and not at his school or religious institution?

The new decision by the Boy Scouts of America to allow troops to discriminate if they claim religious exemption will cause just those problems.

"What does that do to folks like me?" asked former Boy Scout leadership team member Jon Langbert, who is openly gay and says he gave up his leadership role when other fathers complained. "If I want to participate with my son, do I now have to start ringing up on the phone and calling around to different troops and saying, 'Do you guys discriminate, or am I a first-class citizen in your troop and I can join?' "

"It creates a bit of a mess when you don't have one global policy for the Scouts," Langbert added, noting that the national organization allows gay adults as employees. "When you have one branch of an organization doing one thing and another doing another, it creates a lot of stress for folks like me, and I don't think it's sending the right message to the boys, either."

Women – Power and Transformation of the World

Is this why hierarchy-supporting men work so hard to keep the female energy from manifesting in our world? Of course it is.

If hierarchical men could continue to limit women's participation in government and society, and extinguish women's sexual energy by demonizing it and keeping women barefoot and pregnant, hierarchical men could keep running the world.

Move over, hierarchical men, change is here.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Mass Shooters are White Males Supporting some HIerarchy or Another

In his article, "It's Not About Mental Illness: The big lie that always follows shootings by white males" Arthur Chu points out that blaming "mental illness" is a cop-out, and one that lets us avoid talking about race, guns, hatred, and terrorism.

We posted an article a few years back in the Washington Post that pointed out that if mental illness were the culprit, why aren't women and girls shooting up people they don't know. We received a firestorm of hate from it's publication, but obviously, we were right.

Jindal and the Hierarchy Supporters – Trends in White Male Shooters No Problem

To Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal  and many Republican lawmakers, when white men (top of the hierarchy) fire guns on people in public places it is “tragic” and “awful,” but when the shooter has a connection to “Islamic extremism,” the act becomes terrorism.

Jindal and his white male counterparts also refuse to discuss policies that lead people to open fire and commit mass executions across the country. In Louisiana, many of those policies were Jindal's creation.

Jindal is rated A+ by the National Rifle Association, He has opposed every sensible piece of gun control legislation in Louisiana. He has also signed bills making it easier for people to have and carry firearms in public, including one to allow people to carry concealed handguns into restaurants that serve alcohol. He also signed into law a bill expanding  Louisiana’s “stand your ground” law.

Clueless at the top, amazingly clueless.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Death Struggle Moving Right Along

New polling from the Pew Research Center:
"Republican politics has been radicalized to a historic degree, a development that the electorate has apparently noticed." Death struggle of the hierarchy and those who want to build it is intensifying.
"But therein lies the contemporary challenge for the GOP: the party has no idea what to do to move closer to the American mainstream. If leaders move away from extremist elements in their party, they’ll be replaced by their radical colleagues. If Republican policymakers abandon the far-right agenda, they’ll lose in their next primary." Extremely CLUELESS AT THE TOP
"At the same time, however, GOP officials are currently in the process of asking Americans to give the party control of the White House, Senate, and House, effective January 2017. The more the U.S. majority considers the Republican Party “extreme,” the more difficult it will be for voters to give the GOP that kind of power over the federal government." Expecting nothing to change when change is all around them.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Human/Animal Hierarchy Continues to Fall - JFK Airport

Now people whose furry family members are changing planes or need a place to spend the night between flights can rest assured that everything will be fine.

To assist four-legged travelers and the humans who love them, Kennedy is turning an unused cargo terminal into The Ark at JFK, a full-service, USDA-approved airport facility just for animals. 

The Ark will house a pet spa offering an optional "pawdicure," dog suites, an adventure jungle for cats, an animal training center, and a veterinary hospital. Pets have the option of spending the night or just popping in between flights.

Looks like it is going to be fancy. 

Serious About Climate Change - Artificial Photosynthesis

While hierarchy conservatives all over the country deny climate change so that people on top of our economic hierarchies can continue to abuse our resources in order to contribute to their economic gain, there is good news from Canada.

Think photosynthesis without plants, and that is close to a system being developed in Canada that can turn atmospheric CO2 into fuel. This process could put a dent into climate change. Great news.

Call for Probe into Attackers of Planned Parenthood

People who oppose Planned Parenthood religiously using any any techniques they can dream of have been intent for decades in keeping women and girls barefoot and pregnant and controlled by men. They are intent on keeping the gender hierarchy strong.

The Center for Medical Progress lied to Planned Parenthood with the intent of obtaining information from deceit. Four House Democrats -- Jan Schakowsky, Zoe Lofgren, Jerry Nadler and Yvette Clarke -- are calling for a probe into whether the Center for Medical Progress, a nonprofit group that opposes abortion, violated state or federal laws by pretending to work for a company but were really there to record Planned Parenthoold executives without their permission.

Democrats also expressed concern about whether the Center for Medical Progress coordinated with the Republican lawmakers who have traditionally harassed Planned Parenthood, this time calling for an investigation into Planned Parenthood. Some of the Republicans calling for an investigation into Planned Parenthood said they'd seen the video as early as a month in advance.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Man with Cerebral Palsy Now Able to Put His Shoes On By Himself

We live in Oregon, so we know all about Nike's reputation for using sweat shops, and that Phil Knight, the richest person in Oregon, has enough influence and power to have many people refer to the University of Oregon as Nike University.

And we realize that Nike's reason for creating a basketball-type shoe for people who can only use one hand to put on their footware creates a potential market for them.

However, in celebration of how breaking down the physical ability/disability hierarchy has come such a long way since the implementation of the ADA, this is a good story of the heart-warming response of Nike to a letter received from a man with cerebral palsy. Maybe the letter would have been ignored decades ago. Of course, decades ago the man probably would not be going to a public high school and dreaming of going to the college of his choice either.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Confederate Flag Waivers - Clueless in Oklahoma City

In Oklahoma City, our president was greeted by a large group of people (speculated to be probably all white men according to Salon) waving their Confederate flags.

People on top of the hierarchy have such a hard time understanding that what they think are their privileges to act as they please are in fact, actions that are afforded them because of their lives on top of hierarchies. They insist on remaining clueless are not forced to see life from someone else's point of view. If their actions adversely affect others, then it is of no matter and no consequence to them.

According to their slogan "Confederate Lives Matter," what these people want is to continue to make their lives matter much more than others who are harmed by their actions.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Will Republicans Ever Stop Trying to Build the Sexual Orientation Hierarchy?

Yesterday the commissioners of Dent County, Missouri (county seat of Salem) voted to lower the US flag at the Dent County Courthouse and Judicial Building below half mast one day a week to observe a "full year of ‘mourning’ for our nation" every 26th day of the month.

And why? Presiding Commissioner Darrell Skiles wrote that the motion was a direct response to “the U.S. high court’s stamp of approval of what God speaks of as an abomination” of same-sex marriage and that “all who see these flags at this lowered position be reminded of this despicable Supreme Court travesty.”

All three of these Republicans seem to be moved to do whatever it takes to keep the sexual orientation hierarchy strong, including pairing denial of civil rights up with patriotism.

Surely one day the Republicans will come around, but who knows when. At least the Dent County commissioners did rescind their vote after public outcry, but what is done is done. It is too late to save their reputation of being homophobic.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Limited Access to Birth Control - It Works to Keep the Gender Hierarchy Strong

Republicans have a habit of doing whatever it takes to keep hierarchies strong, including the hierarchies of race, income, national origin, and sexual orientation.

Also included is gender, where Republicans have been working hard to limit the access of birth control and abortion to women, as they strive to keep women lower in the hierarchy and men higher.

Financial security for women is directly linked to availability of birth control. Access to reproductive rights means a woman can be secure and avoid being dependent on a man who can control her.

Of course, limiting reproductive rights keeps hierarchies strong, as a 2002 Harvard study pointed out. Four out of five sexually active women are on birth control, and that there is a direct correlation between the availability of birth control and women's presence in the workforce. In fact, access to birth control is associated with increased educational opportunities, resulting in greater skilled employment opportunities for women.

University of Michigan economist Martha Bailey said that contraceptives enable young women to stay in the labor market and invest in their careers, while also being sexually active without risking pregnancy.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Cartoons that Explain to Men what Non-consent Means

In 2013, a Zerlina Maxwell statement was controversial when she said the she didn't think that we should be telling women anything when it comes to rape. We should be telling men not to rape women and start the prevention conversation there.

In an "Upworthy" article, seven comics appear that can be used to teach men and boys what non-consent means, using other situations that might be more easy for males to understand, considering that males grow up in a society where they are taught that women are sex objects that exist for them to enjoy and exploit.

Typical in a hierarchy, men learn that their wants and needs, or their perceived wants and needs from being on top of the hierarchy, come before the well-being of women.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

John Lewis Speaks Out on the Confederate Flag

Georgia Congressman John Lewis on the Confederate Flag. "It is a symbol of division, a symbol of separation; it is a symbol of hate as a relic in our dark past. We much defeat every attempt to return this flag.

"Fifty years ago when we were beaten on the Edmund Pettus bridge, and attempted to march from Selma to Montgomery, there were officers of the law wearing the Confederate battle flag on their helmet. When the Klan marched through our neighborhoods in Alabama, in Georgia, and South Carolina, countless homes in Birmingham was bombed and burned. When they set fires to churches throughout the South, the Confederate battle flags was the symbol of their cruelty and injustice. There is no way the Federal Government should ever display this flag on any federal site or sell it on federal property."

Who better to know than John Lewis.

Facebook – Progress in the Gender Hierarchy

Little changes can mean a lot, particularly considering how many people look at Facebook images and take them in, consciously or unconsciously, people young and old. We are taught hierarchies in subtle ways, including the culture biases that have contributed to gender inequality for pay, corporate leadership, and representation in fields such as technology.

Facebook images of individuals or groups have historically taught us that men are important up front and center, and women are to be helpers or in the background. Now that will be changed. In the new "friends" icon, the female avatar is now placed in front of the male icon, instead of being behind him with part of her body cut off. She has a stronger posture. Hairstyles have been updated for both genders, particularly removing her "Darth Vader-like helmet."

As in any hierarchy, the people on the top are supposed to represent everyone, like accepting that the term "man" means both genders, and "actor" means both genders. If we show an image of a man, we are supposed to accept that we are including everyone, but, in reality, we are learning who is important and who is not. It doesn't work both ways, as if we say "woman" or "actress," we know we are only talking about females.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

University of Mississippi - Contrasts

Charles Ross, head of the African American studies department, points out a Confederate statue at the entrance to the University of Mississippi. A statue of James Meredith, the first black student to enroll in the university, in 1962 under armed guard, stands a few hundred yards from the Confederate memorial.

The first African American cheerleader, John Hawkins, in 1982 was sent death threats after he refused to carry the Confederate flag on to the football field.  Fifteen years later the university did away with the flag for good from official sporting events, and in 2003 the mascot Colonel Reb was retired.

But the school still centers around Rebel Drive, and Dixie is played at sporting events.

Dr. Don Cole enrolled in 1968 as a student, and was expelled two years later for organizing civil rights events. He returned in the mid-eighties as a math professor, and now advises the chancellor on multicultural issues.

Back and forth at the University of Mississippi, just like our country.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Hank Aaron – Hate Mail for Talking about Racism

The hate mail that is sent to people who challenge the hierarchies of the United States is certainly not limited to us, Harriet and Charlotte Childress.

Hank Aaron, the man who broke Babe Ruth's home run record said in an interview last week:

"We can talk about baseball. Talk about politics. Sure, this country has a black president, but when you look at a black president, President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he's treated," Aaron said.

He added, "We have moved in the right direction, and there have been improvements, but we still have a long ways to go in the country. The bigger difference is that back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts."

The hate mail has poured in. And the KKK has scheduled a rally in Columbia, South Carolina for July 18. Will they ever go away?