Saturday, 30 March 2013

A QUICK QUESTION ABOUT DRIVING

Ken Berwitz

Just curious:  short of channeling Mario Andretti, is it possible to go fast enough so that you are not passed - often on the right - while driving the Garden State Parkway?

My experience, as recently as a couple of hours ago, is no.  Not even at 25mph over the speed limit.

Did they sequester state troopers?


CAMPUS TOLERANCE: JOHNS HOPKINS EDITION

Ken Berwitz

Here, sad to say, is one of the many examples of campus "tolerance" that can be found in so-called institutions of higher learning around the country.

Excerpted from an article at studentsforlife.org:

On March 12th, a pro-life group at Johns Hopkins University, Voice for Life (VFL), was denied the right to become an official student club by the Student Government Association (SGA) during a student Senate meeting, after having been recommended for approval by the SGA Appointments and Evaluations Committee.  At that same SGA meeting, though, another new group was approved called Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP).  Although SJP has a history of anti-Semitism and disruption on other campuses, the SGA decided that the students from JHU creating the group were separate from other campus affiliations, and they couldn't be punished for potential violations.  Somehow, these standards were not applied to Voice for Life.

This general body meeting was followed by an SGA Town Hall meeting the next day whereupon the decision was further expounded.  The SGA explained that they decided not to grant official club status to Voice for Life because:

1) The pro-life group's intentions to peacefully engage in sidewalk counseling off campus at a Baltimore abortion facility "clearly violates the JHU Harassment and Code of Conduct policies."
2) One of the 100 pro-life organization
links on the Voice for Life website sent visitors to the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform's website, which was judged to be "offensive." CBR has brought their Genocide Awareness Project (GAP), which features images of aborted preborn babies, as well as Holocaust victims, and victims of lynching, to Baltimore near the JHU campus in the past.

The article goes on to point out that a second attempt to become a student club was rejected this week, and that one Student Government Association (SGA) member (maybe more) equated the pro-life group with White supremacy groups, and other hate groups.

So a pro-life organization is rejected.  But a group known for anti-Semitism which has a history of disruption on other campuses, is just fine.  If this is what passes for logic and - how hard it is to use the word here - tolerance at Johns Hopkins University these days, the school has come to one sorry pass.

Maybe it should consider merging with Florida Atlantic University.  These two seem to have a lot in common.

Oh, one other thing.  I googled "Students for Justice in Palestine" and, in the first 12 pages of google entries, there is not one indication of any anti-Semitism at all about this organization, just reports on how wonderful it is; how dedicated to justice and fairness. 

How can this be?  It is due to a major problem with google (and, I assume, other search engines).  Any group that wants you to see just one side of things, can "google-bomb" web sites (i.e. make them appear more frequently read than others, thus moving them to the front).  In the case of "Students for Justice in Palestine", this can result in someone not familiar with the technique, concluding that there is no anti-Semitism in the organization, because, hey, you can't even find a word about it on google.

But you can in this blog.  Read about the Israel-hating, Jew-hating "Students for Justice in Palestine" by clicking here, and - going all the way back to 2002 - by clicking here.  


THE QUOTE OF THE DAY

Ken Berwitz

Today's quote comes to us from the recently deposed MSNBC prime-time show host, Ed Schultz.

Speaking on his radio show, Schultz had this to say about the Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA):

"The Defense of Marriage Act, basically, in a nutshell, as you read through 90,000 pieces of paper on it, it comes down to this -- it bars federal benefits to same-sex couples. And this, of course, gets into end of life issues, insurance issues, health care issues, pay issues, everything, you name it. But it was the right wing's opportunity and legislative push to make sure that marriage is between a man and a woman."

That so, Ed?  Uh.....

-In the house, Democrats voted in favor of DOMA by 118 - 65.

-In the Senate, Democrats voted in favor of DOMA by 32 - 14. 

-.And, having passed both houses of congress, DOMA was actively supported, and signed into law, by then-President Bill Clinton.  If memory serves, he was a Democrat too.

So, if not one Republican had even voted on DOMA, it would have won by a landslide among Democrats alone. 

Ed, this being the case, maybe you can help us out and explain how that makes it "right wing" legislation.  But, to tell you the truth, I sort of doubt you can.

I'd like to think that the ignorance, dishonesty, or both displayed by Ed Schultz on DOMA, and so many other things (at one point a few months ago, Noel Sheppard of newsbusters.org was blogging about Schultz's invented "facts" almost every day) is why MSNBC got rid of him as a prime time host.  But, given the rest of its current prime time lineup - every one a hard left ideologue - I don't believe that is true.

In any event, as Mr. Schultz ruminates over MSNBC having consigned him to the late-afternoon/early evening time slot, which is virtually guaranteed to get little viewership, I hope he will take some comfort in being cited for the quote of the day.  A phony claim as big as the one he made about DOMA certainly deserves it.


CAMPUS TOLERANCE: JOHNS HOPKINS EDITION

Ken Berwitz

Here, sad to say, is one of the many examples of campus "tolerance" that can be found in so-called institutions of higher learning around the country.

Excerpted from an article at studentsforlife.org:

On March 12th, a pro-life group at Johns Hopkins University, Voice for Life (VFL), was denied the right to become an official student club by the Student Government Association (SGA) during a student Senate meeting, after having been recommended for approval by the SGA Appointments and Evaluations Committee.  At that same SGA meeting, though, another new group was approved called Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP).  Although SJP has a history of anti-Semitism and disruption on other campuses, the SGA decided that the students from JHU creating the group were separate from other campus affiliations, and they couldn't be punished for potential violations.  Somehow, these standards were not applied to Voice for Life.

This general body meeting was followed by an SGA Town Hall meeting the next day whereupon the decision was further expounded.  The SGA explained that they decided not to grant official club status to Voice for Life because:

1) The pro-life group's intentions to peacefully engage in sidewalk counseling off campus at a Baltimore abortion facility "clearly violates the JHU Harassment and Code of Conduct policies."
2) One of the 100 pro-life organization
links on the Voice for Life website sent visitors to the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform's website, which was judged to be "offensive." CBR has brought their Genocide Awareness Project (GAP), which features images of aborted preborn babies, as well as Holocaust victims, and victims of lynching, to Baltimore near the JHU campus in the past.

The article goes on to point out that a second attempt to become a student club was rejected this week, and that one Student Government Association (SGA) member (maybe more) equated the pro-life group with White supremacy groups, and other hate groups.

So a pro-life organization is rejected.  But a group known for anti-Semitism which has a history of disruption on other campuses, is just fine.  If this is what passes for logic and - how hard it is to use the word here - tolerance at Johns Hopkins University these days, the school has come to one sorry pass.

Maybe it should consider merging with Florida Atlantic University.  These two seem to have a lot in common.

Oh, one other thing.  I googled "Students for Justice in Palestine" and, in the first 12 pages of google entries, there is not one indication of any anti-Semitism at all about this organization, just reports on how wonderful it is; how dedicated to justice and fairness. 

How can this be?  It is due to a major problem with google (and, I assume, other search engines).  Any group that wants you to see just one side of things, can "google-bomb" web sites (i.e. make them appear more frequently read than others, thus moving them to the front).  In the case of "Students for Justice in Palestine", this can result in someone not familiar with the technique, concluding that there is no anti-Semitism in the organization, because, hey, you can't even find a word about it on google.

But you can in this blog.  Read about the Israel-hating, Jew-hating "Students for Justice in Palestine" by clicking here, and - going all the way back to 2002 - by clicking here.  


WHY IS THE GOVERNMENT INVOLVED IN MARRIAGE?

Ken Berwitz

Over a year ago, I wrote a blog titled "Should Republicans Support Gay Marriage".  In it, I gave my views not only about that issue, but more generally of where I think the government should be marriage-wise, regardless of sexual orientation.

Now, as the Supreme Court wrestles with the Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA), I think it would be a good time to repost that blog.  So here it is:

 

In 2009, New Hampshire legalized gay marriages. 

Since then, so far as I am aware, the state has remained viable.  It hasn't spontaneously broken off and fallen into the Atlantic.  Its citizenry has not fled in terror.

This being the case, it seems to me that things have worked out pretty well.

But now, for reasons that I find unfathomable, some (thankfully, not all) New Hampshire Republicans are looking to repeal gay marriage, thus making it illegal again. 

If the repeal is passed, however, Democrat Governor John Lynch has vowed to veto it.  His exact words:

"New Hampshire has a long and proud tradition of fighting for the rights of all of our people. We have a tradition of leaving people alone, to pursue their own happiness. As governor, I intend to uphold that centuries-old tradition and I will stand firm against any legislation that will strip any of our citizens of their civil rights"

Good for the Governor.  He is absolutely correct. 

And, I am happy to say, there is Republican sentiment against the repeal as well.  Ken Mehlman, former Chair of the Republican National Committee and gay (not that it matters:  I'm straight and completely agree with him) has written a piece for the (New Hampshire) Manchester Union-Leader on why, in his opinion, Republicans should also be against the repeal:  

Here are a few excerpts: 

The party of Lincoln and Reagan should stand first and foremost for freedom. It's part of our heritage and ought to be part of our DNA. Freedom for Americans of all races is why our party was founded. And our greatest moments - "from the unbelievable economic recovery unleashed by lower taxes and less regulation to the fall of the Berlin Wall" - rsulted when we promoted freedom.

Stripping away the right of adults in New Hampshire to marry the person they love is antithetical to freedom.


New Hampshire's civil marriage law protects religious freedom. No religious institution has to perform or recognize same-sex marriages. This is important because different religious traditions have different views on this question.

But despite these differences, so many of our faiths and traditions are rooted in the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would want done to you. Isn't allowing adults to marry the person they love consistent with the Golden Rule? If you were born gay (as I was), how would you feel if your state government took away this basic civil right that is available to all of your neighbors?


Mehlman, like Lynch, is absolutely correct. 

How can anyone who cherishes personal freedom and individual choice be against legalization of gay marriage?  If two guys down the block are gay, in love, and want to formalize a lifetime commitment to each other, that is their business.  Not yours, or mine, or anyone else's. 

If you are against gay marriage, if you find it repulsive, if you believe it is against God's will?  Then by all means do not engage in it.  But don't tell other people, who do not feel as you do, that they are restricted to your point of view. 

It doesn't get more basic than that.

My personal belief, as I have written numbers of times over the years, is that the only legitimate interest government should have in marriage involves the legal issues of partnership - such as who gets what if there is a dissolution of the partnership or if one of the partners dies.  Nothing else. 

Marriage itself should be the province of social and religious institutions.  If, for example, two people - man-woman or same sex - want to be married, and a religious or social institution is agreeable to sanctioning that marriage, then it will perform a ceremony and do so.  The rest of us are perfectly free to feel anyway we want about it.   

As Mr. Lynch and Mr. Mehlman - and I and, I hope, you - agree, it's all about freedom.


FLORIDA ATLANTIC UNIVERSITY: THE FINAL INSULT

Ken Berwitz

As you may be aware (as you are certainly aware if you read this blog), Deandre Poole, an instructor at Florida Atlantic University, told his class to write "Jesus" on a piece of paper, toss it on the floor and stomp on it. 

This was supposed to be a legitimate means of teaching a "lesson in debate".  Yeah, right.

Well, one of the students, a pracicing Mormon named Ryan Rotela (or Rotella - it is spelled both ways in the articles I have read) objected and refused to do it.

For this insurrection, Rotela was suspended from class.  What happened then  is outlined in this segment of a blog I wrote on March 24:

-According to Florida Atlantic University, no student was forced to participate in stomping on the name "Jesus", and no student has been expelled suspended or disciplined as the result of any activity that took place in the class.

-But when Ryan Rotela, a practicing Mormon, refused to do it, he was suspended from school. 

Then, suddenly out of nowhere, Mr. Rotela was accused of a laundry list of high crimes and misdemeanors that, if a fraction of them were true, should have him in prison awaiting trial (funny, though; no hint that any charges were ever filed against him in the past - i.e. before he embarrassed the Jesus-hating professor in that class). 

And now, in complete contradiction of the school's claim, he has been instructed, in writing, that he cannot attend class, speak to any of the other students who witnessed what happened, and - just in case he might want to leave their hellhole and attend a different University - they may withhold his school records for some indeterminate period of time.

Translation:  Florida Atlantic University desperately tried to cover this sick garbage up and, in the process, lied about what it was doing to facilitate the coverup.

Well, now the "school" (it is hard to call it that without quotation marks) has put out the following statement:

"As a result of the reaction to a recent exercise in Dr. Poole's intercultural communications class, the instructor's personal safety has been compromised.  Dr. Poole will not teach any classes, conduct office hours or be present at any of FAU's campuses or sites."

In other words, Poole is - as of now, with no indication that it is a permanent status - no longer teaching at Florida Atlantic University - not because of his disgusting, hate-filled "class activity", but because of the reaction by those terrible people who reacted negatively to it.  (I wonder what Poole's personal safety level would have been if that paper had "Muhammed" on it instead of "Jesus".  Do you think he would ever have done his "lesson in debate" that way?).

The fact that this "school" is telling us its joke of an "instructor" was not removed because of what he did, only because of the reaction to it, is the final insult.

Oh, did I mention that Deandre Poole is Vice Chair of the Palm Beach Democrat Party?  We're still waiting to hear the reaction of Poole's fellow Democrats to his Christian-hating activity.  And to see the articles from mainstream media about what it means that Democrats would have a hater like this in such a position of authority. 

Don't count on either happening any time soon.

Zeke .... ..... Newsflash: - - - According to FAU, Rotella, the student, also is responsible for . Global Warming, . the sinking of the Titanic, . 48726and for Derek Jeter being on the Injured/Disabled list. .... ..... (03/30/13)


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