Recent News

I’ve been busy with life over the past week or two, so my posting has been more limited than usual. I hope to change that a bit as I adjust to juggling everything. Let me start with some recent news, not all of which will necessarily be quite that recent:

DOMA is dead. This isn’t a huge shock, but it was obviously the right move – not that all this bigotry was going to stand much longer in California anyway. And, coming as even less of a shock, my prediction about Political Figure Antonin Scalia was dead on. Specifically, I cited a dissent he wrote in Lawrence v Texas where he said that the majority’s decision to keep government out of our bedrooms was predicated on the principle that government would have to recognize homosexual relationships (at least in certain capacities, though Scalia wrote broadly and vaguely here). I also pointed out his supposed adherence to stare decisis, which essentially is the idea that past decisions of the Court must be factored into future decisions. Clearly there is a conflict in his DOMA dissent: He can’t claim that he is duty-bound by decision X then turn around and ignore that decision in a case where it is explicitly relevant – at least not if he wants anyone to believe he isn’t merely making a personal, political decision.

Wendy Davis of Texas is pretty awesome. She managed to filibuster a shitty abortion bill the old fashioned way by standing and talking for a dozen or so hours. Now we just need to make that be a requirement again on the federal level.

President Obama has said he isn’t personally involved in the hunt for Edward Snowden. There are a few points I have on this. First, Edward Snowden is a god damned hero. We should give that a man a parade immediately after we strip the NSA of nearly all its powers. Second, my opinion of the President has sunk significantly over these privacy issues. I still support his economic policies (which would be successful if we weren’t forced into running that 3/4 Republican-style economy because Congress is composed of children), but I can’t get behind the destruction of the Fourth Amendment. Third, Obama said he isn’t going to scramble any jets “to get a 29-year old hacker”. Hey. Fuck you, man. The only reason for mentioning Snowden’s age (he’s now 30, by the way) is to denigrate him, as if being young is somehow a fault. It isn’t. Moreover, he was fucking right to reveal everything he did. Double moreover, he wasn’t and isn’t a hacker. He was a guy with administrative privileges as granted to him illegally by some secret kangaroo, warrant-rubber-stamping court.

A 19 year old teenager is sitting behind bars for exercising his First Amendment rights. The teen, Justin Carter, was playing a video game when another player called him insane. He then replied, “‘Oh yeah, I’m real messed up in the head, I’m going to go shoot up a school full of kids and eat their still, beating hearts.” He then said “lol” and “jk”. (The article explains what these mean. Whereas I feel you shouldn’t be on the Internet if you don’t know their meanings, I will not explain them.) This is pretty obvious bullshit. It was sarcasm which was absurd and dismissed immediately as a joke. In no way could a reasonable person believe that Carter was making a legitimate threat, yet now he sits in jail, charged with the vague ‘crime’ of making “terroristic” threats. I doubt this would have happened to a well-to-do person in his 40’s. But, hey, it’s easiest to ruin the lives of young people. Here’s a petition to change this horseshit. I hope district attorney Jennifer Tharp is disbarred for abusing her authority, the officers and investigators involved are fire, and everyone who has played a role in this clearly unconstitutional arrest is themselves arrested and jailed. That would be justice.

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