Friday, September 30, 2022

The Difference Between a Bias Crime And Protected Speech

A few years ago a couple of drunk college students were making racist comments as they walked across a parking lot at UConn, they were punished by the college, they appealed and won.

There is only  a minor difference between a bias crime and the First Amendment.

Fighting Words: The Battle Between Free Speech Protections and Connecticut Law
Connecticut Inside Investigator (CII)
By Marc E. Fitch
September 25, 2022

In August of 2022, a 14-year-old Black football player from Enfield High School was going door to door in town selling raffle tickets to support his team. When he ventured onto the property of one home in the largely white town, a woman began screaming at him to get off her property and her son opened a window, calling the boy a racial slur and reportedly threatening to shoot him.

The incident was investigated by police who confirmed the racial slur was used but were unable to confirm the threat of violence. Over the following days, the story blew up in both the town and across Connecticut media, sparking protest rallies, condemnation by local government officials and a community conversation about diversity and inclusion.

The police were unable to bring charges regarding the threat of violence because there was not enough evidence. The use of a racial slur against the teenager, however, was not in dispute. During the community meeting, Enfield Police Chief Alaric Fox reportedly told the community that use of a racial slur, while ugly, was not against the law.

You might ask, how can that not be a bias crime?

There is a murky line between “free speech” and bias crime.

Most of Connecticut’s laws regarding bigotry and bias crimes are tied to actual violent acts — or at least the credible threat of violent acts through intimidation and harassment — that cause damage to either one’s person or their physical property.

But there is a law on Connecticut’s books that makes “ridicule on account of creed, religion, color, denomination, nationality or race” a Class D misdemeanor.

According to CGS 53-37, “Any person who, by his advertisement, ridicules or holds up to contempt any person or class of persons, on account of the creed, religion, color, denomination, nationality or race of such person or class of persons, shall be guilty of a class D misdemeanor.”

And that is where the problem begins!

When is the line crossed between protected speech and ridiculing? One time when we were at a LGBTQ marriage rally a counter protester was yelling at us that we’re damned to hell and followed us a little way. 

Now when did it turn from protected speech and a bias crime?

  1. When they said it, 
  2. When they took steps to follow us, or 
  3. When they took twenty steps or more following us?

Um… I don’t know and really only a court can determine when it is.

But that is not always the case, a bias crime also can involve threats.

“One of the things that many students and many people are not aware of is that the First Amendment protects hate speech, and there have been a number of cases where it’s been upheld that people do have the right to use hate language, whether it’s the n-word or antisemitic statements or even to make fun of somebody, not just for racial reasons but for any reason,” Harris [A professor of journalism at Southern Connecticut State University who teaches a class on freedom of speech and has studied the use of racial slurs throughout history.] said.

The article then goes on to talk about the UConn case.

Arguing on behalf of one of the students in his criminal case, attorney and free speech advocate Mario Cerame wrote in his brief that 53-37 was unconstitutional because it regulated the content of speech, rather than criminalizing “how or when some speech is made,” and that the language of the statute is “facially vague” with an “unascertainable standard.”

Perhaps sensing that 53-37 wasn’t right legal vehicle for prosecuting the students, prosecutors dropped the charges under Connecticut’s ridicule law and instead moved forward with second degree breach of peace and disorderly conduct.

I have worked with a number of lawyers including those from the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities and one thing I picked up listening to them is that a lawyer gives themselves wiggle room, they never say yes or no, instead they say “It is most likely…” or “In my opinion…” because what it boils down to is what a judge and jury decide.

The federal court has requested the Connecticut Supreme Court define the word “advertisement” in the statute to move forward and is awaiting that opinion, but Harris says that’s not the only term in the statute that lacks definition.

“What is considered ridicule?” Harris asked. “Certainly, you can ridicule someone racially without using the n-word and I think when this statute was first created, they were covering a broad range of different things.”

Legal things get very tricky when it comes to definitions (Notice that in the Connecticut statues on discrimination against us nowhere is the word “Transgender” used and that is because there is no fixed definition of the word, it is a moving target. Does it include crossdressers? Does it include drag queens? Does it include non-ops or just post-ops?)

So the bottom line. If you are being harassed ask them “Are you threatening me?” if they are dumb enough to answer “yes” you got them for a bias crime.

"Sherman, set the Wayback machine to …"

1980 and to Tri-Ess.

Tri-Ess was officially know as Society for the Second Self it was a group for heterosexual crossdressers. No others need to apply, no transsexuals, no drag queens, no gay men, just happily married crossdressers.

It was founded in 1976 by Virginia Prince, it had member organizations around the country including one in New Hampshire with very strict rules. Virginia was a somewhat homophobe and transphobic.

So… going to the Transgender Archives I dug up one of their newsletter from the Chi-Delta-Mu chapter (They gave their chapter names like sororities.) their membership flyer begins with,


Say the word "Sorority" and the last thing that most people think of is an all-male club! The Society For The Second Self exists to help the heterosexual male transvestite (TV) Straight men who have a recurring de·sire to dress in woman’s clothing. Tvs are probably the most misunderstood minority group in the world. As with other minorities, ignorance fosters prejudice and prejudice fosters intolerance and hostility toward T s by society-at-large.

In such a climate, many of us live in fear of discovery by a scornful public. We've kept our Tvism a secret from our closest loved ones. While in the closet many of us think that we are the only ones in the world with these rather off-beat desires.

In our isolation, we may even come to believe the popular sterotypes "Maybe I'm really gay. Maybe I'm headed towards a sex change operation. I must be sick to want to wear these clothes and to go out in the street wearing them, no less.

It’s not surprising that many of us feel or think these things. But we of the Society believe - and know from experience - that this mind-set is neither inevitable or irreversible. We believe that the fundamental problem for Tvs is not personal but actually social. We believe that our guilt, shame, confusion and fear are the products of a non-accepting and ignorant society. s! And even if I'm not sick, I must be wrong to want things to be this way. 

We of the Society firmly believe that Tv's con - and indeed many do - live happy, well-adjusted lives, and we dedicate ourselves to this end. We believe that the best treatment for Tv's is self-acceptance and the creation of a more knowledgable and understanding society. We firmly REJECT the notion that Tv's should -- or even can -- be "cured" of their desire to "crossdress ". 

We invite you to read on and - consider joining with us. Or, if you 're not a T v, we hope that you can make use of this information. Pass it on to a needy friend. Perhaps you might even re-examine your own attitudes towards Tvism and think of how you can be more supportive. Or, if you 're some other kind of crossdresser – and there are many other kinds – why not join one of those groups that have a more open membership policy. 

Now remember this was from 1980 so some of the words are antiqued but you get the gist of the group, they cis gendered, heterosexual crossdressers, period. Virginia Prince was very anti-trans which borders on transphobic, I meet her once at Fantasia Fair at a workshop on planning your transition and he put his two cents in about transitioning. The presenter replied, “Yes Virginia we know your views.” later at the conference she got the pioneer award that was later named after her.

In another article in their membership flyer.

Crossdressing is common to a number of behavior patterns - a fact that confuses Tv's and non-Tv's alike. Tv's, drag queens, pre-operative transsexuals, fetishists, female impersonators, and sado-masochists approach crossdressing with different motivations and derive different satisfactions from it. Tv's can achieve greater self-understanding -- and hence self-acceptance – by considering how our own motivations and satisfactions compare with these different personality types.

Now get a hold of this...

Drag queens and female impersonators are the most visible types of crossdressers. Drag Queens are gay - or at least bi-sexual -- males who typically don women's clothes and manners to mock society's sterotype of gay men. Or they do it to attract a sex partner, helping to ease the guilt that some gay men feel over their "abnormal" sexual preference. 

I think that there is still that fear of many crossdressers that they will be thought to be gay and that is the origins of their homophobia and internalized transphobia.


Perhaps you are gay or bi-sexual or another type of Tv that really doesn't fit in with our organization. Or you could possibly be a Tv who is looking for a more sexually-oriented group. If you don't fit our organization, we hope that you will screen yourself out of consideration for membership. In that case you might like to contact one of the more "open" organizations susuch as the ''Alliance" located in Pa. 

Translated, we don’t want GAYS!

This is their membership application:


I understand the purpose of The Society For The Second Self to be the assistance of its members in developing understanding, acceptance and psychological growth in the realm of my expression of the feminine side of my personality. I pledge to assist, when possible, in the dissemination

of information about crossdressing to the public so as to increase general awareness of this subject. I further agree:

1. To do my part in passing on what knowledge and understanding I can to those not so fortunate or as developed as myself.

2. To assist my Sorority sisters in handling their crossdressing related problems and to devote my energy to such problems when requested.

3. To take part in programs, when possible, and to actively contribute my talents towards making the Sorority a successful organization -- psychologically, socially, and therapuetically.

4. To recognize that information about Sorority sisters (real names and addresses) is theirs to give voluntarily. If such information is given to me, I will keep it most confidential.

5. To keep National Headquarters informed of behavior and activities which are against the best interests of the organization. I understand that my membership will be revoked if found guilty of conduct unbecoming of a sister in the Sorority.

6. It is further understood that the personal information revealed in order to gain membership into the Sorority will not be revealed to any other than the officers of the organization and only then when needed for Sorority business.

In seeking membership I acknowledge that I believe In the full expression of my personality, both masculine AND feminine.

Understanding and agreeing to the above I am: 

They expect you to turn in any gays.

Most of the members were married and lived in fear of being called “Gay”

This is a newsletter cover from the chapter

Then we have this for the guys… a shoe chart to convert women sizes to men sizes in a FTM newsletter;

I hope that you enjoyed today’s blast from the past! More of our history can be found at Transgender Archives.

Thursday, September 29, 2022

We Are On The Chopping Block Here In Connecticut

NBC CT - NBC Connecticut 9/27/22

I don’t know if you saw the gubernatorial debate Tuesday but we came up in the debate.

Lamont, Stefanowski paint different pictures of CT in first debate
CT Mirror
By Mark Pazniokas
September 27, 2022

Trailing by double digits in recent polls, Republican Bob Stefanowski repeatedly jabbed at Gov. Ned Lamont on Tuesday, trying in the first of two televised debates to stoke voter concerns over inflation, crime, police accountability, local zoning and how children are taught sex education in public schools.


He also repeated his opposition to transgender athletes playing in girls sports, without saying if he would support repealing the the civil rights law that currently allows them to compete. He objected to how sex education is taught in some schools, again without suggesting a course of action by the state.

Though out the debate Stefanowski said many times about “parental rights.” Back in early September he said,

Bob Stefanowski calls for school changes — from transgender athletes competing to sex education
CT Insider
By Julia Bergman
September 6, 2022

With less than two months to go until Election Day, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Stefanowski is putting parental choice at the forefront of his campaign — proposing ideas intended to energize conservative voters by opposing Connecticut’s policy for transgender athletes to giving parents control over what their children are taught in school.

With a crowd of parents behind them, Stefanowski and his running mate, state Rep. Laura Devlin, R-Fairfield, released a “parental bill of rights” Tuesday — a plan that addresses some of the cultural issues that have angered parents across the country and turned local board of education races into political battlegrounds.

What are "parental rights"? That's a good question. You ask a dozen people and you will get a dozen answers, that is a vague ill defined phrases that they do not want to have defined.

"Parental rights" started on the Christian fringe — now it's the GOP's winning issue

Right-wing Christians have pushed for parental control over education for years. Suddenly it's the GOP's main focus
By Kathryn Joyce
January 12, 2022

Not that long ago, the notion of "parental rights" as a conservative organizing principle was primarily associated with subcultures of the religious right. In the late 2000s, Michael Farris, founder of the advocacy group Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) as well as Patrick Henry College

That group's primary purpose was to advocate for the passage of a constitutional amendment declaring, "The liberty of parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children is a fundamental right," which no international treaty or law could supersede. Farris's HSLDA published tip-sheets advising parents what to do "when social workers come knocking" (basically, don't answer), and took frequent aim at the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), which Farris claimed would prevent parents from "reasonably" spanking their children and would place decisions about making kids wash dishes or go to church under the purview of an "18-member international panel." He even wrote a novel with an anti-homeschooling villain named after Hillary Clinton, who upends society by signing the CRC.

But as the last few months — and even the last few days — have made clear, parents' rights is a fringe issue no more. This Monday, former Republican senator David Perdue, now running for governor in Georgia, unveiled a new "Parents' Bill of Rights" that would require schools to make teaching materials and other information about educators and school funding available to parents. Perdue's proposal echoed a federal bill, the Parents' Bill of Rights Act, introduced last November by Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., as well as numerous bills recently passed or proposed in states including Florida, Indiana, Iowa and Missouri, and, as of last week, Pennsylvania.

It has become a code word for the Republicans like “Critical Race Theory” that no one also knows what it really is. So that leads to the question: just what is parental rights?

Much of this activity can be traced back to the Manhattan Institute, a conservative think tank whose senior fellow Christopher Rufo helped turn critical race theory into one of the preeminent educational debates in 2021 (and who was present onstage when DeSantis announced his "Stop W.O.K.E. Act" last month). In early January, Rufo tweeted that his "goal this year is for 10+ state legislatures to pass curriculum transparency bills, requiring public schools to make all teaching materials easily available to parents via internet. It's time to get the political predators out of the shadows — and return power to families." 

To that end, Rufo's colleagues have drafted model state legislation requiring schools to make public all teaching and teacher-training materials — with optional language allowing politicians to make clear that they mostly care about materials related to "matters of nondiscrimination, diversity, equity, inclusion, race, ethnicity, sex, gender, or bias."

Can you imagine that would do to teachers?

Everything they say or do or handout must pass mustard, the paperwork involved and they must watch every word that they. How many teachers will have second thoughts about teaching.

Does he want to Balkanize education? And just how is going to do that? Will there be a list of classes and the parent picks and chooses which class they want their children to attend? Will there be a town referendum? Or will the group of parents who shouts the loudest  get their way?

Will the school be handing out something like this to every parent? Will the future of education going to look like this? 

I want my child to attend the following classes:

__ Reading & writing classes
__ Reading (but only the classics) & writing classes
__ Reading (but only the Bible) & writing classes
__ English classes
__ Math classes
__ Math (but not algebra) classes
__ Math (but not algebra or calculus) classes
__ Science classes
__ Sciences (but only evolution and that we are not related to monkeys) classes
__ Earth science classes
__ Earth science (but only a flat earth) classes
__ Earth science (but only that the earth is only 3000 years old) classes
__ Human sexuality classes
__ Human sexuality (but only if they do not cover; homosexuals, transsexuals, intersex, and sex) classes

And just think of the number of teachers that they will need? Specially if there are only one or two in each class.

Governor Candidates Face Off in NBC & Telemundo Connecticut Forum

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

What Do They Think?

More threats come out against drag queens are filling the news, it seems like it is a new right-wing fad, making threats against libraries and bars that hosts drag events.

Column: Drag queen storytime is not a threat to our way of life. It’s a joyful, loving balm.
Chicago Tribune
By Heidi Stevens
September 23, 2022

I’m trying to imagine why a person would look around in this particular moment and decide that drag queens reading storybooks to children are a menace that must be thwarted.

I know the mind reels at the number of ways and places our kids can be harmed: Gun violence is now the leading cause of death for American children; COVID-19 variants continue to evolve; the American West is running out of water and kids are choking on wildfire smoke; close to half of all Americans live in areas with hazardous air quality levels; the proportion of high school students reporting persistent sadness or hopelessness increased by 40% over the last decade.


But drag queens? Reading storybooks? And playing bingo? And creating balloon animals, along with joy and laughter and levity and a spark plus kindling for the imagination and curiosity and openheartedness and flexible thinking that will serve young people in every one of their endeavors?

Not a menace. If anything, a balm.

Just exactly does the right-wing kooks think is happening in the middle of a library? Just exactly do these armed protesters think will happen to the kids when the parents are there with the their children, that they are saving the children from some imagined horror?

Which is worst for the kids? Armed protesters or drag queens? In an article on the website Hyperallergic they report,

A Memphis museum was forced to cancel a family-friendly drag show and dance party when around 30 armed protesters showed up outside. Members of the far-right extremist group the Proud Boys reportedly joined a group of religious parents gathered in the parking lot of the Museum of Science & History (MoSH) on the evening of Friday, September 23, resulting in a last-minute evacuation just before the 7pm start time.

What do they protesters teach the children? That it is all right to threaten people who you don’t like with violence?

The Chicago Tribune article goes on to say,

“There seems to be a lot of confusion as to, like, drag has to be sexual,” performer Ginger Forest told the Chicago Tribune. “And that is not true at all. Our show specifically, we don’t wear revealing clothing. We don’t use profanity. We don’t do songs that are not children-appropriate. So, basically, what I would say is, go experience a show and see for yourself, how magical it can be.”


That is precisely what they think! Their minds are in the gutter.

The problem is that these protesters have a warped mind, they think gays want to hump anything that moves. They don’t think that LGBTQ+ can have a long term loving relationship, that all they are one night stands. They don’t believe that they can have a 30 year relationship like a couple that I know. It is these right-wing “patriots” who have a sick mind.

Have you noticed that these armed protesters are mostly men who think that they have to defend their "Manhood" what is it? Are they afraid that if they don't protest that they will be called "queer" or "gay"? Most women on the other hand are out their holding their Bibles. 

And Now Pennsylvania

All the little DeSantis wannabes are coming out of the woodwork.

Pennsylvania lawmaker introduces bill modeled after Florida ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law: ‘Mine goes further’
The measure would bar public school educators from addressing sexual orientation and gender identity with their students through the fifth grade.
The Hill
By Brooke Migdon
September 26, 2022

Story at a glance

  • Pennsylvania state Rep. Stephanie Borowicz (R) last week introduced legislation to ban lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity in public schools through the fifth grade, telling supporters during a news conference that her bill was modeled after Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law.
  •  Borowicz has argued that measures to ban topics including sexual orientation and gender identity from the classroom should extend through high school.
  • Borowicz’s measure is backed by Pennsylvania state Sen. Doug Mastriano, the GOP nominee for governor.

A conservative Pennsylvania House member has introduced legislation to ban discussions of sexual orientation and gender identity in public school classrooms, arguing the measure is necessary to protect the state’s youth from “indoctrination.”

The measure, introduced last week by Pennsylvania state Rep. Stephanie Borowicz (R), was patterned after Florida’s controversial Parental Rights in Education law — legislation that has been dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” law by its critics for its ban on classroom instruction related to sexual orientation and gender identity through the third grade.


Borowicz added that she believes transgender students should not be allowed to use facilities like restrooms or locker rooms consistent with their gender identity, though such a clause is not included in her proposed legislation. The state Supreme Court in 2019 declined to take up a challenge to one Pennsylvania school district’s gender-inclusive restroom policy, allowing it to take effect.

Laws don’t mean anything to the Republicans, laws are for other people not them.

The Pennsylvania Commission on LGBTQ Affairs, which advises Gov. Tom Wolf (D) on policies that affect the LGBTQ+ community, has condemned the Senate measure, calling it a “cruel attempt to politicize LGBTQ people and deny their humanity.”

Borowicz last week refuted that claim, doubling down on an argument used by proponents of similar legislation that such measures are necessary to protect the innocence of children and preserve fundamental parental rights. She said multiple parents had approached her to report they had found “sexually explicit content and pornographic images” in their children’s schoolbooks, which she said were “repulsive” and “horrific.”

Pennsylvania is just one of states that are censoring us, PBS News Hour reported back in April that,

Earlier this month, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signed into law House Bill 322, colloquially dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, restricting public school teachers from discussing LGBTQ+ history or people in public elementary schools.

It stood out for two reasons: Alabama was just the second state to pass such a law in 21 years, after Florida passed a similar measure in March. But more significantly, Ivey had just signed a repeal of a similar law the previous year.

At least 20 states have introduced “Don’t Say Gay” laws this year, which have made waves around the country. But in a handful of states, versions of the legislation have existed for decades.

This is becoming one upmanship between Republican states.

This is different than the Lavender Scare of the 50s and the Anita Bryant's "Save Our Children" campaign of the 70s, this is more organized and it has money behind it. Also we now have social media behind it and the whole fascist movement. 

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

They Are Coming For Us.

Complete with Nazi flags, the Proud Boys, and Patriot Front marched to a church to protest a drag queen bingo.

From the Advocate article

Nazis, Patriot Front Converge at a Drag Bingo at Texas Church
Hundreds of right-wing extremists, Nazis, members of the Proud Boys, and Patriot Front all joined to protest the church's drag bingo event.
The Advocate
By Christopher Wiggins
September 26, 2022

A convergence of right-wing hate mongers menaced a Saturday's drag queen bingo event at a Texas church.

Protesters and counter-protesters lined opposing sides of a divided highway in the Texas town of Katy, west of Houston. The location is home to the LGBTQ-affirming congregation of the First Christian Church, which hosted two drag queen bingo events.

The daytime event was open to all ages, followed by an adults-only event Saturday evening.

Several hundred right-wing radicals to include members of the Proud Boys, Patriot Front, and Nazis, showed up in opposition to the religious institution's activities, Houston's Fox affiliate KRIV reports.

Chief among the participants on Saturday was Kelly Neidert, the University of North Texas student that has spent much of her post-education period directing hatred at LGBTQ+ communities through her organization Protect Texas Kids. Neidert is a self-described "Christian fascist."

They were stirred up by media agitators and police in riot gear had to separate the protesters,

Right-wing media figures and influencers had stirred up anger and whipped up their followers to target the event, including Steve Bannon, who amplified anti-LGBTQ+ activist Sherronna Bishop on his program calling for the disruption of the Katy affair.

You might remember that Bannon worked for Trump at the White House.


Then over in Norway, violence at a gay bar like the Pulse Nightclub shootings in Orlando Florida.

Police Arrest Two Men, Seek A Third For Deadly Oslo Gay Bar Shooting
Little information was provided about the suspects.
The Advocate
By Donald Padgett
September 26, 2022

Police in Norway on Sunday announced the arrest of two men in connection with the mass shooting in Oslo during Pride month last June.

Oslo police said they had arrested a Somali citizen in his 40s and a Norwegian citizen in his 30s, but, according to Reuters, provided no other information on the suspects or the charges.

The arrests bring to four the number of people implicated by police in connection with the attack, as police on Friday announced they had issued an international arrest warrant for Arfan Bhattti, a 44-year-old Norwegian Islamist, over his alleged role in the attack. Zaniar Matapour, 43, was quickly arrested near the scene on the night of the attack and charged with terrorism, murder, and attempted murder in connection with the attack.

The mass shooting took place in Oslo outside the London Pub and the Per på hjørnet, both popular gay bars, early on the morning of Saturday, June 25. The shootings left two dead and 21 wounded, and came only hours before the city’s Pride celebration was to take place. Out of concern for the safety of participants and the fear of additional attacks, the Pride parade scheduled for later in the day was canceled.

The violence is being stirred up around the world as the far-right is making political gains just the fascists did in the 1930 in Italy and Germany and they are using us just the fascist did under Hitler and Mussolini.


And in Italy a fascist won the national elections there, the first time that a fascist has been elected since Mussolini.

Giorgia Meloni: Italy’s far-right anti-LGBTQ party leader wins
After years of activism she carved a space for herself in the Italian political arena & is now set to be Italy’s first female prime minister
Los Angeles Blade
By Brody Levesque
September 25, 2022

Italy’s far-right leader Giorgia Meloni, head of the Brothers of Italy party, appeared to have won in Sunday’s snap general elections according to exit polling. In a coalition with other right wing parties, Meloni’s right-wing alliance now looks to have control of both houses, with a projected 42.2% of the Senate vote.

This will lead to her forming Italy’s most right-wing government since World War Two and Meloni is now set to be Italy’s first female prime minister. However, the final say will rest with Sergio Mattarella the President of Italy, a decision that is expected to take some time according to political observers in Rome familiar with the inner workings of the Italian government.

Turnout for Sunday’s elections was dramatically low – 63.82% by the time polls closed – said Italy’s interior ministry, almost 10 points down on 2018. Voting levels were especially poor in southern regions including Sicily.

That is why we have to get out the vote in November, apathy kills a democracy!

They got out the vote by stirring up dislike toward immigrants and us, sound familiar? That is why we need to get out the vote, not just us, but also the women and all the other Democratic voters!

Meloni is seen as polarizing figure with some of her political stances and rhetoric on the European Union aligning her close to Hungary’s nationalist leader Viktor Orban. However, Professor Gianluca Passarrelli of Rome’s Sapienza University told the BBC he thought she would avoid rocking the boat on Europe and focus on other policies: “I think we will see more restrictions on civil rights and policies on LGBT and immigrants.”


As LGBTQ+ equity and equality rights are foundational to the European Union and its governing commission, some see Meloni as combatting the EU over LGBTQ+ issues in the same vein as Hungary’s Orban.

The right-wing governments of Hungary, Poland, Turkey, and Italy I feel will split the European Union wide open. The future is not looking good.

Back in the 1930s that “Great Depression” was in full swing and from that the fascists rose to power using minorities as scapegoats… the Jews, the Romany (The Gypsies), the mentally ill, and us. Back then they had the Blackshirts in Italy and the Stormtroopers in Germany and now we have our Proud Boys and the and Patriot Front.

Tell me do you see any similarities between now and then. We are in a period of economic instability due to COVID and huge corporate profits, and we are at war just like back in the 30s. The rich environment for fascism.


Yes, it is getting dangerous for us around the world… it is spreading!
By Alvise Armellini and Chiara Rodriquez
September 27, 2022

The LGBT community has "very real fears" after a conservative bloc dominated by the far-right won Italy's general election, a leading gay rights campaigner told Reuters.

The nationalist Brothers of Italy group, led by Giorgia Meloni, emerged as the largest party in the ballot and will lead the most right-wing government in Rome since World War Two.

"Unfortunately there are very real fears" about an erosion of civil rights under the new administration, Fabrizio Marrazzo of the Gay Party said.

Meloni is allied with the League, another far-right force led by Matteo Salvini, and the mainstream conservative Forza Italia of former premier Silvio Berlusconi.

"The League and partly Brothers of Italy have in their manifestos things that are quite negative for our community, like stressing the importance of protecting only the traditional family," Marrazzo said.


Marrazzo, a former leader of the Arcigay LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) association who unsuccessfully stood i

In the Sept. 25 election, said he was most concerned about the cultural signals coming from the right.
He said it might become harder to run anti-LGBT discrimination programmes in schools and said there had been an increase in the past in homophobic attacks in Italian cities and regions with right-wing administrations.

Pro Vita & Famiglia, a conservative Catholic lobby that is highly suspicious of sex education in schools, has called on the new government to pick an education minister opposed to "any gender and LGBT ideological colonisation in schools".

There is is that combination again… far-right-wing and religion.
In June, an Ipsos poll showed that 63% of Italians backed marriage rights for gay people, up 15 points from 2013, and 59% were in favour of gay adoptions, an increase of 17 points from nine years ago.
But public opinion means nothing to fascist, they have their own agenda of oppression. People vote their pocketbook and our rights mean nothing to them.

Have you seen the PBS show on the Holocaust by Ken Burns? It is an eye opener on the parallels between the 1930s and now.

Ken Burns Holocaust documentary makes it harder to kid ourselves about U.S. culpability
The News Tribune
By Melinda Henneberger
September 26, 2022

Those who think we should tell only happy stories about America will not want to watch the new PBS Ken Burns documentary, “The U.S. and the Holocaust.”


“The U.S. and the Holocaust” shows how our xenophobic 1924 law imposing new immigration quotas that favored the white and the Protestant — and tragically, made no exception for refugees — delighted Hitler. He probably needed some cheering up, reading about it as he did in the prison cell where he was serving time for treason after leading a failed coup.

Hmm… who else do we know who lead a failed coup?

During his first 100 days in office, newspapers in this country ran some 3,000 accounts of attacks on German Jews. And how did the American public respond? With indifference, willed ignorance, and in some cases, worry about what could be done without “inflaming” Hitler. Even some Jewish friends of President Franklin Roosevelt told him they worried that he might only make things worse by speaking out. He didn’t speak out. A 1938 poll asked Americans whether they thought the persecution of Jews in Germany was their own fault. Two-thirds of respondents said yes, it was either partly or entirely on them.

Once again… is there any parallels with the persecution of us? How many people spoke out about president’s Biden speech on Fascism?

Maybe our current slide into fascism won’t continue; we don’t know yet, and the answer will be up to us. But we do have reason to believe that “America First,” means essentially the same thing to My Pillow’s Mike Lindell that it did to Charles Lindbergh. “The fragility of civilized behavior is the one thing you really learn” from history, says the writer Daniel Mendelsohn, best known for his book, “The Lost: The Search for Six of Six Million.” The World War II-era Germans in fading photographs, “they’re no different — no different — from us. You look at your neighbors, the people at the dry cleaners, the waiters in the restaurant, that’s who these people were. Don’t kid yourself.” This documentary makes it a little harder to kid ourselves.

But what I think is those who see the Ken Burns documentary are not the ones watching, he is preaching to the converted.

Statement Opposes Anti-Trans Political and Legal Processes

US Professional Association for Transgender Health issued a statement against laws being passed criminalizing our healthcare.

USPATH WPATH Joint Statement Opposes Political and Legal Processes across the US Limiting Lifesaving Interventions for TGD People

The newly released WPATH Standards of Care Version 8 clearly define the treatment of transgender and gender diverse children and adolescents, including medical interventions such as puberty delaying medications or gender-affirming hormones, and when appropriate, surgical interventions, as medically necessary. Recently, there have been numerous political and legal efforts to restrict, ban, or even make this lifesaving care illegal. These efforts ignore the science in this field and place transgender and gender diverse people at risk of losing access to care. Families have been placed at risk of being inappropriately investigated, or even having their child removed from the home. In addition to political and legal actions in this area, there have been numerous direct threats against individual healthcare providers and institutional programs. There have been countless anecdotes of harassing phone calls and messages, both in the workplace and directed to clinicians' personal phones and e-mail addresses. Recently, a major children's hospital was targeted with a bomb threat, and clinics and individual clinicians have enlisted armed security.

USPATH stands in strong opposition to political and legal processes in place across the United States which aim to limit or halt these lifesaving interventions. USPATH supports all transgender and gender diverse people in their right to access medically necessary healthcare and the right of all people to fully express who they are. Furthermore, USPATH is appalled at the specter of clinics and individual healthcare providers being harassed and having to engage armed security personnel. USPATH calls on all Americans to reject this repulsive and threatening behavior. We implore law enforcement agencies to support our colleagues, their programs, and our patients. We call upon institutions to be prepared with security protocols and as appropriate, crisis communication plans, to ensure that our healthcare providers remain safe and that our patients continue to have access to lifesaving care.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Don’t Say Gay.

 It is causing great harm to the LGBTQ+ youth in schools, it has caused an increasing in bullying and discrimination in violation of federal law.

Critics say new school policies in Florida ostracize LGBTQ students
By William Brangham and Dorothy Hasting
September 20, 2022

Judy Woodruff:

In Florida, some local school boards have implemented policies that critics say are ostracizing LGBTQ students as the new school year gets under way.

Other states are taking similar steps, including most recently in Virginia.

William Brangham is back now with our look at its impact for some students in Florida.


Will Larkins:

I have noticed an uptick in anti-LGBTQ hate crimes and general attitude toward people.

I have always dealt with homophobia at high school. I have always been called slurs and stuff, but it has gotten worse since the school year started. A lot of things have happened. Most recently, my sister and I were followed home after a football game by 15 guys, who called us slurs, told us to kill ourselves.

It was really scary. They said they were going to beat us up. They chased us. We got lost in the trees.

The other thing I have noticed really — really that I know for a fact came from this is more of the rhetoric that's coming from the state legislature and our governor, such as the grooming rhetoric, calling queer people pedophiles, has now trickled down to the high school level, and high school bullies are using the same language as our politicians, who are pushing for this bill and other anti-LGBTQ laws.

William Brangham:

Those are horrible experiences. I'm sorry.

Javier, have you seen similar kinds of things?

Javier Gomez:

I have, actually.

I mean, from my school, I have noticed that there's been a divide against a lot of students with the anti-gay rhetoric that's been spewed around by so many people. I have noticed the languages that are being used. There's the grooming pedophiles, et cetera.

And I definitely think that there's been this precedent set by this bill in particular and other states nationwide. And it's been trickling down to, like Will said, the high school level, where a lot of kids are using that language and thinking it's appropriate, and going at queer kids.

And it's really traumatizing, to a point where it hurts me and it hurts — and I can't imagine the pain that other people are feeling. And I'm not in high school anymore.

That is the harm that these laws are creating. They are empowering the vitriol that these children are seeing in schools. If you look at the bias crimes in states that are anti-LGBTQ+ compared to affirming states it is like night and day.

In 2016 after the Pulse night club shootings in Florida, the New York Times ran an article about bias crimes.

L.G.B.T. People Are More Likely to Be Targets of Hate Crimes Than Any Other Minority Group
Even before the shooting rampage at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people were already the most likely targets of hate crimes in America, according to an analysis of data collected by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
By Haeyoun Park and Iaryna Mykhyalyshyn
June 16, 2016


A recent investigation by The Associated Press found that thousands of city police and county sheriff’s departments had not filed a single hate crime report to the F.B.I. between 2009 and 2014.

Larger cities or cities with a more visible L.G.B.T. community are more likely to have procedures and training in place to detect and reduce hate crimes.

For example, in 2014 only one hate crime was reported for the entire state of Mississippi. In Connecticut, where L.G.B.T. people are arguably more visible and influential, 23 hate crimes based on sexual orientation were reported, Mr. Herek said.

In PubMed a database of research papers run by the National Institutes of Health there is a paper about,

When Love Meets Hate: The Relationship Between State Policies on Gay and Lesbian Rights and Hate Crime Incidence by Brian L. Levy and Denise L. Levy and they found (And keep in mind that this research was done before the escalation of bias crimes)…

This research also has implications for current social policy. In addition to the individual-level benefits that characterize current pro-equality arguments in the gay and lesbian rights debate, there are positive social externalities, such as a reduction in hate crimes, associated with pro-equality laws. Although public opinion on marriage equality remains fairly closely divided, the general public is, for the most part, not divided in its opposition to hate crimes. Thus, the potential for state policies to influence, if not serve as, societal forces in the production of hate crimes will be an important consideration for legislatures and courts deliberating marriage equality, hate crime, and employment nondiscrimination laws.

And now with the passage of all the anti-LGBTQ+ laws like the “Don’t Say Gay” law (For the purists, HB1557) the discrimination is even more pronounced.

The only reason why the Republican are against us is to rally their evangelical Christian base to vote. 

What Do You Expect…

From the conservative media, especially Fox News

Tucker Carlson Says Hospitals Should Expect Threats Over Trans Care
The Fox News entertainer says that those who provide gender-affirming care should expect threats, and an Ohio hospital is the latest to experience just that.
The Advocate
By Christopher Wiggins
September 23, 2022

As attacks on hospitals across the country providing gender-affirming care services to trans children increases, with the latest target being a hospital in Ohio, far-right Fox News pundit Tucker Carlson is adding fuel to the fire.

During a segment on his show, Tucker Carlson Tonight, on Wednesday, Carlson, who has often made anti-LGBTQ+ comments, attacked hospitals providing gender-affirming health care to transgender young people. 

Carlson said that being transgender is a fad, and he repeatedly claimed that gender-affirming medicine harms children and called it a “crime.” He also described being transgender as a “fad.”

Following a series of tweets from right-wing extremist influencer Matt Walsh accusing Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Tennessee of opening its gender-affirming care division for financial gain, Carlson joined online trolls in targeting the facility.

Here he is endorsing violence against people. 

As a result, the hospital received an influx of hate and vitriol, leading to its having to shut down its website, as the Daily Beast reported.

Carlson directs his viewers to engage in threatening behavior with a wink and a nod.

Why does the FCC allow him to be make these threats and the harassment. Why hasn't Fox license been suspended? 

Quoting a soon to be released report from the state… “Hate crimes cause trauma to the individual victim and can spread fear, feelings of isolation, and insecurity throughout the wider targeted community.” yet he continues to make these veiled threats.

there has been other hospitals that have been harassed and threaten, such as Akron Children’s Hospital and the Boston Children Hospital.

Carlson continues to lambaste the hospital with false claims that doctors across the country are “drugging and mutilating” children.

For months, conservative hate groups have attempted to spread a conspiracy theory that hospitals are conducting genital surgeries on minors...


Trans rights advocates say these "mutilation" conspiracy theories aim at generating outrage and inspire attacks against medical facilities and professionals providing essential health care to trans children and adults.

He is spreading fear, and stirring up violence against trans people. Last year we broke records on the number of trans people murdered and we are on the way to equal or break that record again.

Ganging Up On Us.

For a long time I have heard of Alliance Defending Freedom, they are the law firm that files most of the law suits against us and who helped lawmakers file anti-trans legislation but I haven’t heard of Family Policy Alliance.

The Christian nationalist boot camp pushing anti-trans laws across America
By Sarah Posner
September 21, 2022


As a high-profile evangelist for these laws, Lundstrum has been part of a growing cohort of right-wing lawmakers and Christian nationalist groups that are working to pass some of the most extreme anti-LGBTQ and anti-abortion measures in the nation. These bills are often based on false claims that gender-affirming care is a ghoulish medical experiment that causes lifelong harm to kids, when in fact doctors and professional medical organizations have established that such treatment is vital to supporting the health and well-being of trans kids.


But Lundstrum's bill didn't take the views of these medical experts into account. Instead, the bill relied on two powerhouses of Christian nationalist political advocacy: the Family Research Council and the Arkansas affiliate of the Family Policy Alliance, the political arm of Focus on the Family. Founded in 1977 by the anti-LGBTQ psychologist James Dobson, Focus on the Family has worked to shape the views of tens of millions of U.S. evangelicals on sexuality and gender—and how they should engage politically in order to ensure that that government be guided by a "biblical worldview."

And the Supreme Court is now packed with judges who put the Bible before the Constitution. These evangelical Christians are organizing politicians on these bill.

Training state lawmakers to implement this ideology has become a top priority of the Family Policy Alliance, which has hailed the SAFE Act as a critical step to protect children from "dangerous medical experiments" that amounted to "manipulation, malpractice, and abuse." 

In 2016, it launched the Statesmen Academy, a program which "provides pro-family legislators early in their career with the training, mentorship, support and coordination necessary for effective, Christ-centered public service," according to its website.

Not only that but they help with political campaigns of their favorite candidates.

The Statesmen Academy elevates the profiles of these legislators and helps them promote legislation rooted in baseless distortions of science and medicine, particularly with regard to reproductive and trans rights.

This those hundreds and hundreds of anti-trans bills are coming from!

Sunday, September 25, 2022

1, 2, 3 Green Light!

Did you ever play Red Light, Green Light game when you were little?

Well now those that want us back in the closet have gotten a green light for their virulence against us.

Gainesville officials, activists react to vandalism of Pride Center of North Central Florida
The Gainesville Sun
By Andrew Caplan
September 24, 2022

The Pride Community Center of North Central Florida was found vandalized early Saturday morning with the culprit leaving behind a hateful message.

The Pride Center is known for its activism for LGBTQ rights and for supporting members of its community throughout the region.

The attack came just weeks before the highly anticipated return of the Gainesville Pride Festival on Oct. 22, which was canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

The vandalism is being investigated as a bias crime by the police and the community has rallied together.

Those who showed up at the center helped clean the mess left behind, sweeping up glass and rocks.


“Later I will be angry about this vicious emotion crime but right now I’m incredibly sad for every vulnerable person in my community,” Alford said, adding that she faults some elected Republicans who have shared anti-LGBTQ rhetoric. “This does not represent the values of our community and we can’t be defined or stopped by the hate-filled actions of ignorant people.”

All the anti-trans and anti-LGBTQ is stirring up anger and violence against us, take a look at some of the comments on Yahoo News over this article,

we the people are tired of it all. it is going to get alot worse for this group. just wait till they are hunted at night and found in the morning for fun

To bad it was not burned down. Nothing but a septic tank!

Their vitriol knows no bounds, with “The Don’t Say” law, the law banning the diversity training in the workplace, with the banning of books, with their criminalizing of our healthcare it is giving the green light for violent acts against us and is polarizing the nation.

With their Pride celebration coming up at the end of October I wonder if there will be anti-LGBTQ rallies or worst yet violence at the festival? 

It Was All For Polling Numbers

It was all a political stunt for DeSantis presidential campaign run! They care more about winning than people lives.

Ron DeSantis' Martha's Vineyard stunt gives Republicans the midterm fight they crave and takes focus off Trump 2024 and abortion rights, GOP operatives say

  • Polling shows voters trust Republicans more than Democrats on immigration and border security.
  • DeSantis' political stunt in Martha's Vineyard rocketed the issues to front-page news ahead of the midterms.
  • Republicans welcome the change of topic from abortion and Trump. 
By Kimberly Leonard and Warren Rojas
September 22, 2022

When Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis orchestrated flights sending migrants and asylum seekers from San Antonio, Texas, to Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, many observers saw a stunt aimed at raising the Republican's political profile ahead of a potential 2024 White House run. 

But according to GOP operatives, the move also gave Republicans running for Congress the opportunity to home in on illegal immigration and border security, topics they've clamored to put at the center of this fall's midterm elections.

DeSantis' timing is ideal for Republicans and allows the governor to continue casting himself as a national GOP leader that others in the party will follow.

But I think it is going to bite the Republicans in the a**!

I think those who think that the “immigration problem” is out of hand have always thought that and those who do not think the there is a problem have also no changed their mind. All his immoral stunt did was polarize the both sides more.

Republicans already knew they held an advantage on these issues even before the Martha's Vineyard controversy. Since March 2021, the National Republican Congressional Committee, which works to elect Republicans in US House races, has sent 357 emails about "Biden's Border Crisis" to reporters. 

But DeSantis' Martha's Vineyard flights brought renewed interest to the matter, said a Republican familiar with House races who asked not to be named in order to speak candidly.

What they hope to do is strengthen their base.

Republicans already knew they held an advantage on these issues even before the Martha's Vineyard controversy. Since March 2021, the National Republican Congressional Committee, which works to elect Republicans in US House races, has sent 357 emails about "Biden's Border Crisis" to reporters. 

But DeSantis' Martha's Vineyard flights brought renewed interest to the matter, said a Republican familiar with House races who asked not to be named in order to speak candidly.


To top it all off, Republicans are closely watching trends that show Democrats are seeing a decline in support from Hispanic voters.

It was nothing more than a political stunt at the expense of human lives. Over the last four or five years the number of hate crimes have skyrocketed!

Rise in reports of hate crimes against Latinos pushes overall number to 11-year high
Of 51 hate-motivated murders reported in 2019, 22 — almost half — were from last year's anti-Hispanic mass shooting in El Paso, Texas.
NBC News
By Suzanne Gamboa and The Associated Press
November 16, 2022

Reports of hate crimes against Latinos, including last year's shooting massacre in El Paso, Texas, increased in 2019, while the overall number of reports of hate-motivated killings hit its highest level since data began being collected in the early 1990s, an FBI report released Monday indicated.

Of the 51 hate-motivated killings reported last year, 22 of the victims — almost half — died in the El Paso massacre on Aug. 3, 2019. Most of the victims were Latinos. Authorities have said the gunman was targeting Hispanics when he drove hundreds of miles to El Paso and shot multiple people at a Walmart.


Authorities said that before the attack, the gunman had posted a hate-filled racist statement decrying the "invasion" of Mexican immigrants in the United States.

That is what all the rhetoric against immigrants is doing hate crimes against Latinos and Asian is the direct results of politicians like DeSantis who milk the political divide for all that’s it worth. And they do the same thing with us, it is all about polling numbers and not people lives!


But the question is; is his  strategy working?

DeSantis risks voter backlash in Florida with migrant flights
The Hill
By Max Greenwood and Amie Parnes
September 23, 2022

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) is facing mounting scrutiny in his home state over his controversial decision last week to fly dozens of mostly Venezuelan migrants to the elite resort island of Martha’s Vineyard, Mass. 

While the move was lauded by conservatives as a powerful protest of the Biden administration’s approach to border security, it has sparked a wave of criticism from Democrats and members of Florida’s vast Hispanic community, a politically influential force in the Sunshine State.

“With this move, this stunt, obviously he made his base very happy,” said Adelys Ferro, the executive director of the Venezuelan American Caucus. “But there are many people more toward the middle and people who are independents that are very disgusted and that reject all of this.”

“We are Venezuelan Americans and we vote, and we’re going to vote in November,” she added. “And we’re never going to vote for somebody who does this.”


But whether the migrant flights — dubbed a political stunt by critics — will weigh on DeSantis, a potential 2024 presidential contender who is facing reelection this year, remains an open question. 

Politico echoes the Hill article and notice that DeSantis is only picking on Venezuelans and not Cuban immigrants.

Gov. Ron DeSantis’ decision to transport mostly Venezuelan migrants to Martha’s Vineyard earlier this week could hurt the Republican governor in November with a key constituency that the GOP has sought to win over.

The move by DeSantis dominated the radio and television airwaves in South Florida — where large swaths of Hispanic voters live. One Spanish radio host loudly denounced the move and even compared DeSantis’ actions to that of deceased Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, who relocated Cubans in the early ‘60s.

Democrat Charlie Crist, who is challenging DeSantis, on Saturday rushed out a new digital ad targeting Hispanics and the Venezuelan community as part of a six-figure buy pounding DeSantis over his attention-getting move.

Will it help or hurt him we will find out in November?

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Saturday 9: This Night Won't Last Forever

Saturday 9: This Night Won't Last Forever (1979)

On Saturdays I take a break from the heavy stuff and have some fun…

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) This song begins with, "Everybody likes a celebration." Do you have any birthdays or anniversaries coming up on your calendar?

Yes, birthday is in October.

2) The lyrics tell us Michael Johnson is stuck at a party while his heart is breaking. He finds it awkward and painful to pretend there's nothing wrong. Are adept at "putting a good face on it?" Or is it easy for others to tell how you're feeling?

Yes, I had over 70 years to practice "putting a good face on it?"

3) Michael feels like this is going to be a long night. Is there a part of your day when time tends to drag? Or when it flies?

At 3 in the morning as I toss and turn trying to get back to sleep.

4) As bad as he feels right now, he's still hopeful about tomorrow. What are you looking forward to for Sunday?

Well I’ll tell you what I am not looking forward to doing, driving back home. I have a doctors appointment on Monday.

5) When he was 13, Michael taught himself to play the guitar. He went on to take formal lessons and mastered classical guitar. What's something you would like learn more about/do better?

Well I was thinking about taking a photo workshop next fall that is sponsored by DownEast magazine, I’m pretty good with my camera but I think a class will have good subject matter.

6) For a time he performed with a trio known as Denver, Boise & Johnson. The Denver was John. Do you have a favorite John Denver song?

Country Roads, I bet you that this will be the song that most Saturday 9ers will pick.

7) He retired to Minneapolis to be near his adult daughter. But he never stopped performing entirely. For years he delighted loyal local fans with with an annual holiday concert on December 26 at Orchestra Hall. Is there a performer you've seen in concert more than once?

I am not a big crowd fan so the last concert that I went to was in 1974, it was a Grateful Dead concert at Dillion Stadium in Hartford.

8) In 1979, when this song was popular, the cable channel ESPN launched. What's the last sporting event that you watched?

Umm… Umm… I can’t remember but I have been at meetings across the street from ESPN at Connecticut Community Care. They have a huge campus in Bristol. 

9) Random question: Do you play Wordle?

Nope, I am horrible at word games. Forget Scrabble, forget crossword puzzles my brain just does do good with word games. It is not that I don’t have the vocabulary it is that I can’t connect the word with the definition. Or in the case of Wordle and Scrabble I’m horrible at spelling.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Be Worried

The Republicans want a Constitutional Convention… be scared, be very scared!

Ruling the US supreme court isn’t enough. The right wants to amend the constitution
A conservative movement to rewrite the US constitution is gaining momentum – potentially plunging the US into a vast legal unknown
The Guardian
By Russ Feingold
September 19, 2022

In a recent primetime address, President Joe Biden spoke about “the soul of the nation” – calling out rightwing forces for their numerous efforts to undermine, if not overthrow, our democracy. Biden’s speech was prescient, in more ways than one. In addition to many Republicans promoting the “big lie” that the 2020 election was stolen and working to fill elected offices with people ready to subvert the will of the people, there is a conservative movement underway to radically rewrite the US constitution.

The right has already packed the supreme court and is reaping the rewards, with decisions from Dobbs to Bruen that radically reinterpret the constitution in defiance of precedent and sound legal reasoning. But factions of the right are not satisfied to wait for the court to reinterpret the constitution. Instead, they have set their sights on literally rewriting our foundational document.


As legislatures continue to trend conservative in many states, due in no small part to partisan and racial gerrymandering, factions of the right see an increasingly viable and potentially imminent path to securing the 34 applications necessary to call a convention. In recent months, some congresspeople have even claimed that the constitutional threshold has been satisfied and that Congress must call a convention. While their counting is dubious, the momentum that they could nonetheless achieve is deeply worrying.

So what is on their wish list?

  • A ban on all abortions
  • Marriage is between a man and a woman.
  • Criminalize us and our lesbian, gay, and queer brothers and sisters.

We thought that Roe v. Wade was safe and we had faith in the Supreme Court to do the right thing but the Republicans kept plugging ahead until they packed the courts and they can do the same with a Constitutional Convention.

Pennsylvania Wants To Jump On The Florida’s Bandwagon.

We have another want-a-be. A senator in Pennsylvania introduced a bill a one-ups-manship bill like Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law.

Pennsylvania Republicans Introduce Extreme 'Don't Say Gay' Bill
The bill is more restrictive than the one that became law in Florida.
The Advocate
By Trudy Ring
September 21, 2022

Pennsylvania state representatives have introduced a bill regulating classroom instruction that is more restrictive than Florida’s infamous “don’t say gay” law.

“It is patterned after the Florida bill, but mine goes further,” Republican Rep. Stephanie Borowicz, the legislation’s lead sponsor, said at a rally at the state capitol Tuesday, Harrisburg’s Patriot-News reports.

Her bill, House Bill 2813, would stipulate that public and charter schools “may not offer instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity to a student in kindergarten through fifth grade.” The Florida law, which went into effect this year, bans instruction on these topics in grades K-3 and says any lessons in higher grades must be age-appropriate.

Borowicz said she ideally would like the prohibition to go through 12th grade. “It really needs to be protected up through 12th grade; we need to go all the way,” she told reporters at the rally. She endorsed a similar measure in the state Senate, SB 1278, “which would allow schools to be sued for material that is ‘not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate”’ at any grade level,” the Patriot-News notes.

But the Democratic governor said he will veto the bill.

SB 1278 has passed the Senate, but Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat, has promised to veto it or any bill like it, including HB 2813, which he said “denies humanity by reinforcing homophobic ideologies,” according to news site Local Today. Wolf is not up for reelection this year due to term limits, but the Democratic nominee for governor, Attorney General Josh Shapiro, opposes this type of legislation as well. Lawmakers should stop “wasting time and tax dollars on these attempts to bully LGBTQ Pennsylvanians,” a spokesperson for Shapiro’s campaign told Local Today.

The Republicans are all lining up behind the bill including nominee for governor who is all in favor of the laws and other LGBTQ+ bills.

However, the Republican nominee for governor, Doug Mastriano, attended the rally to voice support for HB 2813, SB 1278, and restrictions on LGBTQ+ content in general, the Patriot-News reports. Mastriano is a close ally of Donald Trump.

The article pointed out something that I didn’t think of,

While the terms “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” apply to heterosexual and cisgender identities as well as LGBTQ+ ones, the bill is clearly directed at LGBTQ+ students and materials, Pick added. “That is being interpreted as you can’t discuss the minority sexual or gender identity,” she said. “What you ultimately wind up with is a climate where schools and teachers feel unable to address the needs of students.”

So if you can talk about heterosexual and cisgender identities but not about us, doesn’t that violate the Fourteenth Amendment about equal treatment under the law? So under the Florida law you can sue the school if they say anything about their straight marriage or children!

The Republicans in their haste and revulsion of us they don't think things through and all the ramifications of what they are doing. 

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Another Republican Ignores The Law.

They feel that they are above the law and that laws do not apply to them.

Tim Scott introduces legislation to pull funding from schools with transgender support policies
Scott said Tuesday that the measure intends to combat “radical and secretive” policies that allow students to use a different name, pronoun or gender marker in school without the knowledge or consent of their parents.

• Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) has introduced a bill to cut federal funding from schools with transgender support policies that do not involve parental consent.
• The measure, titled the Parental Rights Over the Education and Care of Their Kids Act, would bar elementary and middle schools in the U.S. from allowing a student to use a different name, pronoun, restroom or locker room without the knowledge of their parents.
• Conservative lawmakers at the state level this year have pursued similar measures.
The Hill
By Brooke Migdon
September 21, 2022

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) on Tuesday introduced legislation to withhold federal funding from schools with transgender support policies that do not require faculty or staff to obtain parental consent before changing a student’s name or pronouns on school records.

Scott’s Parental Rights Over the Education and Care of Their Kids Act — or the PROTECT Kids Act — would cut federal funding from any elementary or middle school in the U.S. that allows students to change their pronouns or gender markers on school forms without permission from their parents.

The measure would also prevent young transgender students from using school facilities like restrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identity if their use of those accommodations is not first approved by their parents.

The Republicans have new buzzwords… “Parental Rights” they think of kinda like a Monopoly’s Get Out of Jail Free” card. But what they really mean is a free card to discriminate.

Conservative lawmakers across the country this year have cited eroding parental rights as cause for adopting legislation to limit how topics related to gender identity and sexual orientation can be talked about in schools and restrict how transgender young people may access gender-affirming health care.

At the same time, parents advocating against such measures have used similar arguments to claim that state governments do not have the right to unilaterally make decisions about the care or control of their children.


“Public schools across the country are violating these fundamental parental and familial rights by deliberately hiding information about gender transitioning children from their parents,” the bill states. It references transgender support policies adopted by school districts in Maryland, Virginia and Iowa that allow students to socially transition without the consent of their parents.

Think about for a moment, what have the conservatives been going after with their "Parental Rights" campaign?

  • LGBTQ+ people who also fall under the Connecticut non-discrimination laws.
  • Black history like the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre who also fall under the Connecticut non-discrimination laws.
  • Indigenous peoples’ history like the Wounded Knee Massacre who also fall under the Connecticut non-discrimination laws.
  • Immigrants who also fall under the Connecticut non-discrimination laws.

What does it teach the children? 

What the Republicans are saying is that they want to teach the children that it is okay discriminate against people that they don’t like or people who are different.

They have agitated people so much that violence have broken out at Board of Education meetings and board members have received threats. And what does that teach the children when their parents start shouting, using profanities and threats of violence at Board members? Family values?

Court Decisions Doesn’t Mean Anything To Them!

Do you remember the case of  Grimm v. Gloucester County School Board where the Supreme Court let stand a lower decision? In that case the lower court ruled that we are covered under Title IX, that sex does include gender identity.

Clashing with Gavin Grimm decision, Virginia’s new transgender school policies trouble civil rights groups
The Virginian-Pilot
By Nour Habib and Peter Dujardin
September 20, 2022

Schools and civil rights groups are reviewing the new model policies released by the Department of Education last week regarding the treatment of transgender students in K-12 public schools. Though not yet commenting on the legality of the new policies, civil rights groups have expressed concern about how they can impact transgender students in the state’s public schools.

“The ACLU certainly is disappointed in the guidelines,” said Matt Callahan, senior staff attorney for the ACLU of Virginia. “We don’t think that it adequately protects transgender youth.”

The Virginia NAACP condemned what it called the “rollback of protections for transgender students,” saying the new model policies sent a “deeply troubling message to students that this administration will not stand up for students’ civil rights.”

Robert N. Barnette, Jr., president of the Virginia NAACP, said, “this policy is painful and resembles the history of segregation in restrooms and other public accommodations and history is at risk of repeating itself.”

Their justification for changing the policies was horrible! It aims at segregating us and marginalizing us.

The document posted Friday said the previous policies “promoted a specific viewpoint aimed at achieving cultural and social transformation in schools.”

The 2021 model policies called for schools to use a student’s preferred pronoun and allow students to use restrooms that aligned with their gender identity. The new model policies, which emphasize parental rights, state that school personnel can use pronouns that do not correspond to the student’s recorded sex if a parent, or a student age 18 or older, provides written permission “because of the student’s persistent and sincere belief that the student’s gender differs from his or her sex.”

The Republican use the buzzword… “Parental Rights” which is a twist on their “Religious Freedom” chant. As if “Parental Rights” are somehow a magical phrase that allows them to break the law. Because in Connecticut and many other states it is against the law to discriminate against LGBTQ+ people. So by saying we don’t want trans children to use the bathroom that our children use that is blatant discrimination!

Taking LGBTQ+ books off of library shelves is discrimination.

Taking Black history out of books is discrimination.

Preventing teachers and students from saying “Gay” is discrimination.

The Trump’s Supreme Court even said so.

But like Trump’s administration governor Youngkin’s administration chose to ignore the Supreme Court and discriminate against us.

In October 2014, Grimm got permission from his principal to use the boys’ room, doing so without incident for seven weeks before parents objected. Administrators tried to allay those concerns by increasing privacy in the boys’ room, but it wasn’t enough to mollify the objections.


The 4th Circuit upheld that decision in 2020: The three-judge panel ruled 2-1 that the board should have allowed Grimm to use the boys’ room. “The solution was apparent — allow Grimm to use the boys’ restrooms, as he had been doing without incident,” the appeals court opinion said.


Though Gloucester County appealed the ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court, the high court in June 2021 declined to take the case, meaning the 4th Circuit’s ruling still stands. It’s now applicable as federal case law in Virginia, Maryland, North and South Carolina and West Virginia.

But the governor of Virginia believes that he is above the law and can make his rules.

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

What’s That Saying About Getting Your House In Order First?

All that gallivanting around the country assailing immigrants and trans people maybe DeSantis should take care of the state needs firsts.

Florida has a health care crisis. The obsession with culture wars won't fix it
Sarasota Herald-Tribune Editorial Board
September 20, 2022

Sarasota Memorial Hospital deserves praise for its move to hire scores of medical staffers from the Philippines, including 50 nurses, between now and early 2023.


But the mere fact that Sarasota County’s largest employer is actively recruiting foreign medical professionals to boost its personnel levels shows – yet again – why health care should be a prominent issue in the November gubernatorial contest between Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and his Democratic challenger, Charlie Crist.

That makes it even more galling that thanks to our state's seemingly endless loop of culturewar debates and stunts – the latest being DeSantis’ utterly dehumanizing decision to use taxpayer money to fly two planeloads of migrants to Martha’s Vineyard under clearly suspicious pretenses – Florida’s health care challenges are unlikely to receive the focus they deserve during the governor's race.

DeSantis goes around the country lambasting immigrants and LGBTQ+ people but meanwhile the state is crumbling!

According to the United Health Foundation’s 2021  “America’s Health Rankings” report, which was released last December, Florida ranked a woeful 47th in the nation in providing access to health care for its uninsured citizens.

His answer to the lack of teachers is to hire retired police officers!

After giving military veterans easier access to temporary teaching certificates, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday said he wants state legislators to expand that same option for law enforcement officers and other first responders next year.


“Just like we do for veterans, we will do for the other first responders,” DeSantis said at a news conference in New Port Richey on Tuesday morning. “We will waive the exam fees for the state certification program.”

Participants must have a bachelor’s degree and those who sign up will be eligible for a $4,000 bonus. If they teach courses or subject matters that are experiencing “really acute shortages,” DeSantis said they will get another $1,000.

Oh yeah they really know how to teach! And they don’t even have to take any teaching classes! Can you imagine a policeman teaching calculus? Our a former Afghan veteran teaching a class about dangling participle?

Just like the professor in the Wizard of Oz, don’t look behind the curtain… look… look at these DRAG QUEENS!

Don’t look at the shy high insurance rates!

Don’t look at the shortages in teachers!

Don’t look at the shortages in healthcare providers!

Don’t look at the crumbling infrastructure!

Just look at these horrible drag queens reading stories to children!

But instead of Florida problems, DeSantis goes around the country rallying votes against us and immigrants for his presidential candidacy.

And you know what?

The voters eat it up, eat up all the white supremacists talk about immigrants taking jobs away from the citizens (Never mind that they take jobs that no one else wants), they eat up that the immoral drags queens are grooming child (Never mind the fact that nothing immoral is happening.), and never mind that all the voter fraud is being done by Republican voters.

It is time to wake up to the smoke and mirrors.

An editorial in the Washington Post by Andreas Kluth Texas and Florida Are Going Full Belarus on Migrants says;
Here’s an opening question: Are Greg Abbott and Ron Desantis, the Republican governors of Texas and Florida, respectively, moral analogs to Alexander Lukashenko, the dictator of Belarus, or Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the strongman president of Turkey?

Lukashenko and Erdogan have used some of the most vulnerable human beings in the world — refugees from the Middle East — as pawns in their games against perceived political enemies in the European Union. Erdogan has prodded migrants to cross Turkey’s land and sea borders with Greece. Lukashenko has flown refugees to Belarus before herding them toward Poland, Lithuania and Latvia.

Abbott and Desantis are doing something similar. In their games, Venezuelans and other Latin Americans assume the role of Syrians or Afghans. And “blue” states such as New York, Illinois or Massachusetts, and “sanctuary cities” such as New York or Washington, D.C., play the part of the EU.

Almost all European countries nowadays have far-right populist parties whose rhetoric ranges from merely anti-immigrant to downright xenophobic. In places such as Hungary and Poland they’re in power; in Italy and elsewhere they could soon be. They do well whenever parts of the electorate feel anxious — about their wallets, safety or way of life — amid the ominous presence of large numbers of exotic-looking foreigners. (When refugees look less exotic, like the Ukrainians who’ve fled to Poland, the backlash tends to be manageable.)
And lets not forget us.

Turkey and Belarus both had anti-LGBTQ+ rallies and have passed laws against us.

The Republicans are taking us down the path to a dictatorship and authoritarianism.