Sunday, June 30, 2024

I Noticed Something About The Debate Coverage It Was Biased.

Did you notice it also?

All over the front pages… Biden Blows It!

Did you see any headline saying something like… Trump lied from the beginning to end of the debate! The only time I read about his lies it was buried down in the article.
Opinion | Media reaction to the newsworthy first presidential debate
Joe Biden had a bad night. That was the story from Thursday’s debate — not anything Trump said, whether it was true or not.
By: Tom Jones    
June 28, 2024

If you didn’t watch Thursday night’s debate between President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, and you only read a transcript, you might have a different view than those who watched and listened to the debate.

Based on substance, and substance alone, Democrats thought Biden had a decent night, pointing out the accomplishments of his presidency and his vision for the next four years while slamming Trump for repeating lies and avoiding tough questions.

But if you watched and listened to the debate, well, that was another story.

Here’s how bad it went for Biden: Even the Democratic analysts on CNN and MSNBC needed some spicy mustard because of the way they were twisting themselves into pretzels trying to defend how Biden looked and sounded.

Ultimately, however, it was a tough spin, and even they knew it. To their credit, they called it like they saw it, and what they saw was not good.
Yeah, it was hard to say anything about the debates about President Biden awful night, but if Biden showed his age, Trump showed his character.

Just look at these headline...
New York Times



Fox News
On the evening news all they had were video clips of President Biden, nothing on Trump lies other than a voiceover of a clip of Trump.

But the media seems to have focused on Biden age and glossed over Trump lies. Where are the headlines calling for Trump step down for lying?
Opinion  What the debate told us: Biden’s facts are no match for Trump’s lies
Trump can shamelessly lie when debate moderators don’t fact-check in real time.
The Washington Post
By Jennifer Rubin
June 28, 202

What caught my eye
The problem for President Biden during his debate with felon and former president Donald Trump: He looked and sounded his age. He may have had his facts in a row, but in this format, it hardly matters. Unfortunately, allowing Trump to blather lies nonstop without fact-checking plays right into a compulsive liar’s hands.

Biden recited his economic accomplishments, reiterated figures on the debt, pounced on Trump for getting Roe v. Wade overturned (and made the case Trump would sign a nationwide ban on abortion), repeated the details of his border plan and called out Trump for “lies” on veterans and immigration. Biden showed real anger when he repeated Gen. John Kelly’s revelation that Trump called dead military “suckers” and “losers.”


Trump, on the other hand, unsurprisingly lied and lied some more. He claimed Biden had only given jobs to illegal immigrants; claimed the world now did not respect the United States; claimed illegal immigrants were on Social Security and Medicare; pretended that other countries pay tariffs; claimed babies are killed after birth; insisted “everyone” wanted abortion brought back to the states; claimed Biden “opened” the borders; and insisted we have “no borders.” On immigration, Trump dreamed up illegal immigrants in luxury hotels. He denied saying that military personnel who died are “suckers” and “losers.” He bizarrely insisted NATO went broke — over and over again. (He still doesn’t understand that our European allies support NATO through their own defense budgets, not by “paying up.”) Most appalling, he claimed Biden encouraged Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. He even claimed credit for Biden’s effort to lower insulin drug prices.


Trump can shamelessly lie when moderators don’t fact-check in real time. The format simply does not work with an inveterate liar. But at points, Trump showed his true colors and his utter inability to answer straight policy questions (e.g., he could never answer a question on child care or on opioids). One is left somewhat despondent that millions of Americans will nevertheless vote for him.
The Hill,
June 29, 2024

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) said the media “quickly” turned on President Biden after his debate performance.

Huckabee joined NewsNation’s “On Balance with Leland Vittert” Friday, where he said it’s hard to say how long Biden’s performance will dominate the news cycle.
But he saw it from a different angle…

“I think the media has to accept some responsibility for the big lie that they have been telling for months now, and that is that Joe is top of his game, sharpest he’s ever been, just absolutely amazing,” Huckabee said.


Biden’s shaky debate performance caused panic among Democrats and prompted several news organizations to call for Biden to step aside Friday, letting someone else take on former President Trump.
It is the media that is causing the panic, by showing only one side. The whole next evening news show was about President Biden, talk about reinforcing the negative.
I asked my favorite AI…

Perplexity AI: “Was the Post-debate analysis biased in not pointing out Trump lies as much as Biden, it seems that the media focused on Biden but hardly covered Trump lies?
Based on the search results, there is evidence to suggest that post-debate analysis did show some bias in its coverage, focusing more on Biden's performance while not giving equal attention to Trump's numerous false statements. Here are the key points:

    Quantity of false claims: Post-debate fact-checking revealed that Trump made significantly more false claims than Biden. CNN's fact-checker Daniel Dale reported that Trump made over 30 false claims, while Biden made around nine misleading statements
  •  Despite this disparity, the media coverage seemed to focus more on Biden's overall performance rather than highlighting the extent of Trump's falsehoods.
  •  Shift in focus to Biden's performance: Much of the post-debate coverage centered on Biden's perceived weaknesses and subdued performance, rather than extensively covering Trump's numerous false claims
  •  This shift in narrative could be seen as a form of media bias, as it downplayed the significance of Trump's misinformation.

While post-debate analysis did include fact-checking of both candidates' statements, the overall narrative appears to have been skewed towards critiquing Biden's performance rather than giving equal weight to the higher number of false claims made by Trump. This imbalance in coverage could be interpreted as a form of media bias, potentially influencing public perception of the debate outcomes.
So even an AI saw bias in the coverage.

One last word... Did President Biden get any of his fact and figures wrong? No he didn't, it was his presentation that was off, his memory is fine. It is the media with it harping Biden's performance and not taking Trump to task for his lies. 

* About the Poynter Instituter from their website…
The Poynter Institute is a global nonprofit that strengthens democracy by improving the relevance, ethical practice and value of journalism. Through teaching, publishing, convening, fact-checking and media literacy, Poynter creates a crossroads where communities come together to use journalism to confront society’s complex problems.

Poynter has long represented the gold standard for the professional development of journalists, For the last 50 years, Poynter has worked to bolster local news infrastructure and sustainability. In the last year, we’ve trained thousands of local journalists and their newsrooms in craft, digital audience and revenue growth, innovation, diversity, equity and inclusion, and effective management. Our work with local newsrooms has led to millions of dollars in new revenue, millions in new digital audience, and local newsroom leadership that is more equipped to recruit and retain diverse staff, lead from an ethical framework, and create newsrooms that will thrive and continue to grow for years to come.

What Did You Expect?

I worked for a number of companies and had to sign many none discrimination forms and for 24 years I hired people, the company that I worked had what the right-winger call DEI, the policy stated that we would hire the best person for the job and not be influence by their age, race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, gender identity or expression, marital status, sexual orientation, or disability as the law says.

No one form, not one, not one individual said anything about a quota or giving preferential treatment to a person based on any of those classes.
The home improvement and agriculture chain released a statement Thursday addressing the criticism and announcing the change.
NBC News
By Mirna Alsharif
June 28, 2024

American retailer Tractor Supply Co. has eliminated its diversity, equity and inclusion roles and goals following weeks of conservative criticism online.

The home improvement and agriculture chain released a statement Thursday addressing the criticism and announcing the change.

“We have heard from customers that we have disappointed them,” read the statement posted on X. “We have taken this feedback to heart.”

The company also announced other changes it would make, including no longer submitting data to the LGBTQ advocacy group Human Rights Campaign, focusing “on rural America priorities” including education and veterans causes, and no longer sponsoring “nonbusiness activities like pride festivals and voting campaigns.”

This move comes after weeks of criticism spearheaded by Robby Starbuck, a producer and director turned conservative political commentator.
But it is not just us that they pulled back from… CNBC writes,
Tractor Supply, a retail chain that sells home improvement equipment, livestock and agricultural supplies for farmers and pet owners, is eliminating diversity, equity and inclusion roles; withdrawing carbon emission goals; and walking back support for the LGBTQ community as part of sweeping changes to environmental, social and governance initiatives, the company announced this week.
So it is the whole kit and kaboodle of woke and not just us.

My guess these pull backs will come and bite them in the butt when someone sues them for discrimination.

In other news... and it is really bad.
AP News
June 28, 2024

The Texas Supreme Court upheld the state’s ban on gender-affirming care for transgender youths Friday, rejecting pleas from parents that it violates their right to decide on and seek medical care for their children.

The 8-1 ruling from the all-Republican court leaves in place a law that has been in effect since Sept. 1, 2023. Texas is the largest of at least 25 states that have adopted laws restricting or banning gender-affirming medical care for transgender minors.

The Texas law prevents transgender people under 18 from accessing hormone therapies, puberty blockers and transition surgeries, though surgical procedures are rarely performed on children. Children who had already started the medications had to taper off their use.

“We conclude the Legislature made a permissible, rational policy choice to limit the types of available medical procedures for children, particularly in light of the relative nascency of both gender dysphoria and its various modes of treatment and the Legislature’s express constitutional authority to regulate the practice of medicine,” Justice Rebeca Aizpuru Huddle wrote in the court’s decision.
This is really depressing… it will cause irreversible harm to trans children and life long misery for them all because of politics and power.

Saturday, June 29, 2024

Saturday 9: People

Welcome to Saturday 9. What we've committed to our readers is that we will post 9 questions every Saturday. Sometimes the post will have a theme, and at other times the questions will be totally unrelated. Those weeks we do "random questions," so-to-speak. We encourage you to visit other participants posts and leave a comment. Because we don't have any rules, it is your choice. We hate rules. We love memes, however, and here is today's meme!

Saturday 9: People (1964)
On Saturdays I take a break from the heavy stuff and have some fun…

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

1) In this song, Barbra Streisand sings that pride can get in the way of happy relationships. Have you found that to be true?

2) The photo on the record sleeve was taken on Chicago's Oak Street Beach, as Barbra watches the sun rise over Lake Michigan. Have you been to the beach yet this summer?
Well… it all depends on how you mean “ been to the beach” if you mean to a beach, yes I was at the beaches in town and at the National Seashore. If you mean in the water, no. The water temperature is only 68F on the ocean side and the bay side is 65F a little too cold for me.

3) Barbra performed "People" more than 1,350 times when she played Fanny Brice onstage in Funny Girl. She also did it in her Oscar-winning turn as Fanny in the film version. She performed it in her first TV special back in 1964 and in at least 510 concerts since. That's a lot of "People!" Can you think of another performer who has/had a song that is so identified with them you can't imagine seeing them in concert without hearing it?

4) Barbra got her first pet, a poodle named Sadie, as a gift from the Funny Girl behind-the-scenes crew when she was 23 years old and she's had dogs in her life ever since. Did you have pets when you were growing up?
Yes, a parakeet and a dog.

5) Barbra has always taken her Jewish faith seriously, beginning with her days at the Yeshiva of Brooklyn. 70 years later, her old school is still there. How about your grammar school? Does it still stand?
Yes, but it was am elementary school when I went to it but now it is senior center with senior housing and many of those are same children that started their education some 60 years ago.

6) She tried marijuana a couple times but didn't like it and the only alcohol she drinks is the occasional beer with her Chinese food. Are you like Barbra and generally abstain? Or do you enjoy pot and/or alcohol?
After I watched the first half hour of the debate I had two fingers worth of Amaretto over ice and smoked a bowl before I went to bed last night. I was sitting out on the deck sipping the drink and I paid for it the next day. I was wearing shorts and I got all bites right around the hem of my shorts and also on my ankles. I've been scratching like crazy and applying itch relief lotion.

7) Barbra's favorite lunch is a bowl of Campbell's condensed tomato soup. If we were to peek into your pantry, would we find any canned soup?
Yes, chicken and rice, tomato and rice, cream of celery and cream of chicken.

8) In 1964, when this song was popular, hats were, too. The Sears Spring/Summer catalog devoted six pages to ladies hats and two pages to mens. Are hats part of your wardrobe?
Yes, a number of them but I rarely wear them.

9) Random question: Which of your personality traits has gotten you in the most trouble?
My forgetfulness.

Thanks so much for joining us again at Saturday: 9. As always, feel free to come back, see who has participated and comment on their posts. In fact sometimes, if you want to read & comment on everyone's responses, you might want to check back again tomorrow. But it is not a rule. We haven’t any rules here. Join us on next Saturday for another version of Saturday: 9, "Just A Silly Meme on a Saturday!" Enjoy your weekend!

My take on the debate Thursday night,
So what I saw was a man who at ever drop of a hat lied even when he doesn’t have to lie and I saw another man struggling to remember facts and figures. So your choice this fall is between an old man, and a lying used car salesman that I wouldn’t buy a car from let alone run a country.

Whew! Happy Anniversary!

In October it will be 20 year on Cross Gender Therapy and on this day in three years it will be 20 years since I transitioned! It was on this date in 2007 that I transitioned, at 11 AM I was laid off from work and I transitioned.

Just random thoughts I had through out the year…

Before: All my friends were either from high school or work.

After: Holy c**p! I know people from literally around the world and I don’t mean on Facebook but in-person.
  • I’m on an advisory council for governor on hate crimes, I met two governors, both Senators, and a whole of others, including Special Assistant to Assistant Secretary in the Office of Disability Employment Policy at the Department of Labor.
  • A former governor calls me friend.
  • I been in a maximum security prison, that was a trip... for training.
  • I’ve been on a safe schools committee and senior living committee, I’m on legislative LGBTQ committee.
  • I know author who have been #1 on the New York Times Best Sellers list, and a columnists the New York Times.
  • I know Emmy winning producers who has a collection of 9 Emmys.
  • I know a TV news producer.
  • I been on every Sunday morning news show. 

Just about all the people that know me now only knows Diana, there are a hand full or two on Facebook from my past but everyone else just knows me a Diana.

Friday, June 28, 2024

Are You A Tradwife?

This is something right out of the Handmaid’s Tale!

You are asking, “What is a Trad Wife?” well here is a hint, it is coming our of the evangelical far-right. It hasn’t made it into a dictionary yet so here is the definition from the Urban Dictionary...
Short for "traditional wife." Used in alt-right circles to refer to women that embody traditionally feminine and wifely qualities (submissiveness, chastity, willingness to do household chores, etc).
Father Knows Best? It is all about the traditional housewife from the 1950s… barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen!
What is a 'trad wife'? These controversial women are drawing attention – and opinions
USA Today
By Ariana Triggs, Claire Hardwick, & David Oliver
July 14, 2023

Perfectly coiffed hair. A pinup dress. A gorgeous home-cooked meal on a decadent dining room table.

These images convey that of a "traditional wife," a woman you might picture as being from the 1950s.

But these women – known as "trad wives," and typically Christian conservatives – are here today and gaining attention on TikTok to the tune of nearly 187 million views. Many of their followers celebrate the life these women aim to showcase, but others worry they are idealizing a time when women enjoyed less autonomy and fewer rights than they have now − especially as we head into a heated election season.
My mother was a traditional housewife but that was in the 50s. Women could either become a housewife, a teacher, a sectary, or a nurse, those were the options my mother had when she was growing up. She was a sectary at a surveyors office and my father was one of the partners.
Journalist and author Jo Piazza believes there are aspects of the trad wife aesthetic that can be harmful to young, impressionable girls. The purported '50s sitcom lifestyle was just that: a television ideal more than a real-life one.

"It's a false nostalgia for a time that didn't exist for the majority of the population, and for a time that was incredibly demeaning, condescending and difficult for women," she says.

Piazza appreciates that women can make the choice to solely be caregivers and homemakers. Where it goes awry, she says, is that trad wives make it seem as if their choice is superior. Williams, for her part, says she's just living her life and not trying to change anyone else's.
For them they made the right choice but that doesn’t mean it is the right choice for others.

Teen Vogue had this to say about Trad Wife…
There’s been plenty of pushback against this seemingly rising tide of influencers promising women freedom in the confines of their homes, and the movement has been tied to the far-right. But there’s also a layer to these videos that some say isn’t being fully realized. Under a thin veneer of idealized homemaking are ideals pulled from often fundamentalist religious values, some of which can be mechanisms of controlling women.

“The religious underpinnings can’t be ignored,” says Jo Piazza, an author and host of the podcast Under the Influence, which in part examines the trad wife phenomenon. “The tenets of trad wives that say women should be submissive to their husbands and give up all their agency are directly tied to extreme patriarchal evangelical views.”
Can you say “Handmaid’s Tale?”
Tia Levings calls trad wife content a form of “lifestyle evangelism.” Some of these videos, Levings, a writer, ex-fundamentalist, and author of A Well-Trained Wife: My Escape from Christian Patriarchy, said, are part of an effort to tacitly recruit people to the influencer’s religion by making it seem attractive via the kind of life they live. “The trad wives take ordinary cultural elements and desires, such as motherhood and staying home to raise one’s children, and fetishize it, elevating it to a heavenly calling that renders anyone outside of their homey-warm glow as less-than at best, bound for hell at worst,” Levings wrote on her Substack. “They pit ridiculous and fictional opposites against each other, revealing the fundamentalist binaries of their worldview.”
Meanwhile, Salon has another take on it.
There's serious money in peddling fantasies of female submission online, but it may be exacerbating male loneliness
NOVEMBER 27, 2023


It's a neat marketing trick from tradwives to position themselves as a dangerous threat that feminists are desperate to take out. It helps sell the central, lucrative fantasy to credulous audiences: That female submission is a woman's natural desire, one that's being stolen from them by sinister feminist forces. And that you, male viewer, would be gifted with a compliant helpmeet of your very own, if not for those dastardly feminists. But these brave women of YouTube, with their picture-perfect make-up and slender-but-curvy physiques, will stand up to those bitches and restore your birthright: A smoking hot 22-year-old housewife who never talks back, never gets tired, never says "no," and never gains weight, no matter how many children she has. 

By feeding conservative audiences a largely imaginary war with feminists, the tradwives are also pulling off another sleight of hand: distracting from how their content preys upon men, especially young men, by selling them a silly fantasy as reality. In the process, they're contributing to the male loneliness epidemic, by discouraging young men from developing the skills and mindset they need to get a real girlfriend, instead of just subsisting on a steady stream of social media delusions. 
An article in an Indian news site ED Times reports,
Tradwives, spanning the political spectrum, uphold the belief that a woman’s place is in the home as a wife and mother. Whether driven by personal, political, or religious convictions, these women justify their lifestyle choices as a return to traditional values in an increasingly modernized society.

“In recent years, the identity of the tradwife has been adopted by women preferring domestic duties over the modern workforce,” notes journalist Sian Norris. “The tradwife aesthetic is soft, feminine, and sometimes political.”


Far-right tradwives epitomize a broader trend within the far-right movement, leveraging gendered narratives to promote racially focused agendas. Their advocacy for traditional gender roles and condemnation of feminism align with far-right ideals, framing women’s empowerment as detrimental to societal stability and racial purity.
It all fits nicely in with their Christian Nationalism movement and their “Father Knows Best” views. Now consider,
Bans on no-fault divorces would be unpopular, but the Republicans may be too caught up in a moral panic to care
Open Democracy 
Chrissy Stroop
7 December 2023

Republican populist Ronald Reagan was the first – and, until Donald Trump, only – US president to have been divorced. He is also the reason that Americans have been able to divorce without the imposition of an undue government burden over the past 50 or so years, having been the first US politician to sign a no-fault divorce bill into state law while governor of California in 1969.


And it’s even funnier that Trump, who is even more beholden to a Christian nationalist base, could become the president who takes the country back to the bad old days, in which abusive spouses (usually husbands) could often rely on the difficulty of obtaining a divorce to help them trap their abused counterparts (usually wives) in terrible marriages.
Do you see a trend here?
Banning abortions
Banning divorce
Traditional marriage
Banning same-sex marriages
Forcing gays, and trans people back in to the closet
Onward Christian Soldiers


I don’t have any problems with a woman being a traditional wife, if it a choice I don’t have a problem but what I have a problem with if this is forced on a woman.

This Is Earth Shattering, Literately! Big Supreme Court Ruling!

Back in the late sixties I had a summer job in Hartford and every morning on the way to work as I crested a hill I could barely see the skyline of Hartford because it was covered in brown smog.

I remember Love Canal, I remember Rouge River fire, I remember sitting on the banks of the Housatonic River watching the change colors from red to green to yellow, to blue from all the chemical plants up river. Then we have the Naugatuck River that smelled horrible and had mounts of suds at all the falls that blew away in the wind.

Now you eat fish out of most of the rivers, there are still some section that they say don’t eat the fish (Because of GE Pittsfield MA plant) but they are getting far and few between.

But now everything has changed for the worst! Trump’s Supreme Court has ruled!
Supreme Court delivers blow to power of federal agencies, overturning 40-year-old precedent
The important 1984 precedent gave federal bureaucrats flexibility to interpret the law when the language is unclear.
NBC News
By Lawrence Hurley
June 28, 2024

The Supreme Court on Friday overturned a 40-year-old precedent that has been a target of the right because it is seen as bolstering the power of "deep state" bureaucrats.

In a ruling involving a challenge to a fisheries regulation, the court consigned to history a 1984 ruling called Chevron v. Natural Resources Defense Council. That decision had said judges should defer to federal agencies in interpreting the law when the language of a statute is ambiguous, thereby giving regulatory flexibility to bureaucrats.

It is the latest in a series of rulings in which the conservative justices have taken aim at the power of federal agencies, including one on Thursday involving in-house Securities and Exchange Commission adjudications. The ruling was 6-3 with the conservative justices in the majority and liberal justices dissenting.

"Chevron is overruled," Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the majority opinion. "Courts must exercise their independent judgment in deciding whether an agency has acted within its statutory authority."
Say good bye to the environment, say hello to pollution.

What this means is that every, I mean every EPA, every OSHA, every HUD, every FDA, every ruling by an agency will be questioned in court crippling regulatory agencies… just like Project 2025 wanted.

VOTE Blue!

 So I vote for old man, and not a lying used car salesman that I wouldn’t buy a car from let alone run a country.

I just want to say that I have had to show OSHA around after we had an accident at work.
The inspector came up with a huge list of "non-compliance" items and fined us a question of a million dollars. We fixed all the items on the list and guess what they waived all the fines.

I think what lead them to waive the fines was me. One of the "non-compliance" items was that the sink faucet was not above the counter top. I asked the inspector why the faucet has to be above the level of the sink, his answer was so the water in the sink can't get siphoned back into the water lines contaminating the water line. I replied "That makes sense!" He looked at me and explained the violations to me as he found them.
When we had them fixed within a month he came out to reinspect the violations, nodding his head.
They waived all fines.

I believe that if you go with an adversarial attitude of us v. them, yeah it going to come out bad. But if you have an attitude where a safety audit is a good thing you turn it into an educational experience.

Update: 7:30 PM
An example of this ruling. Suppose Congress says no harmful chemicals shall be released in to our waterways. Well in the past Congress let the EPA decide what are harmful chemical, under this ruling the Congress will have to vote on each and every chemical and not the EPA to decide.

This would put a massive burden on Congress to vote on the thousand of chemicals on the market and when a new chemical comes out it will have to be debated in Congress bogging it down.

Update 2:30PM
It turns out that there were also other decisions handed down.
Supreme Court rules for Jan. 6 rioter challenging obstruction charge
The closely watched case focuses on a charge that former President Donald Trump also faces in his election interference case.
NBC News
By Lawrence Hurley and Ryan J. Reilly

The Supreme Court on Friday ruled in favor of a former police officer who is seeking to throw out an obstruction charge for joining the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021.

The justices in a 6-3 vote on nonideological lines handed a win to defendant Joseph Fischer, who is among hundreds of Jan. 6 defendants — including former President Donald Trump — who have been charged with obstructing an official proceeding over the effort to prevent Congress' certification of President Joe Biden’s election victory.

The court concluded that the law, enacted in 2002 as part of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act after the Enron accounting scandal, was only intended to apply to more limited circumstances involving forms of evidence tampering, not the much broader array of situations that prosecutors had claimed it covered.

The provision targets anyone who "obstructs, influences, or impedes any official proceeding, or attempts to do so," but the court determined that its scope is limited by a preceding sentence in the statute referring to altering or destroying records.
So the question remains, with the insurrectionist get off "scot-free" for shutting down Congress?
To prove a violation, prosecutors now have to show that the defendant "impaired the availability or integrity for use in an official proceeding of records, documents, objects, or ... other things used in the proceeding," Roberts wrote.

Update: 5:30PM

It turns out that the Supreme Court also made homelessness a crime.
The Supreme Court has just ruled in the favor of Grants Pass, Oregon.
The New Republic
By Paige Oamek
June 28, 2024

The Supreme Court issued a ruling on Friday essentially criminalizing homelessness by ruling in favor of the city of Grants Pass, Oregon.

In a 6-3 decision that followed the usual ideological lines, the high court ruled that it is not “cruel and unusual punishment” for local governments to issue citations or jail people for sleeping outside even if there is nowhere for them to go.

Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorcuch quoted Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom and San Francisco Mayor London Breed to make the point that the 9th Circuit had previously overstepped and was limiting local governments from utilizing “full panoply of tools in the policy toolbox.”

The case is a major win for Grants Pass, which has no public homeless shelters, but effectively banned homelessness by imposing escalating fines starting at $180 on those who sleep outside. Previously, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled that cities must be able to provide and offer shelter to homeless individuals before they can impose fines and criminalize individuals for the act of sleeping outside. The Justice Department also intervened to say that the Ninth Circuit was correct in saying that the Eighth Amendment prohibits the effective criminalization of homelessness.
It was a bad day for court rulings!

The Constitution… What’s That

I keep telling you that the Republicans don’t believe that the Constitution applies to them.

You know the part that says, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...”
Oklahoma Superintendent Ryan Walters orders schools to teach the Bible
Walters issued his edict days after the state Supreme Court ruled against a publicly funded religious charter school.
NBC News
By Tyler Kingkade
June 27, 2024

Oklahoma will require schools to teach the Bible and have a copy in every classroom, the state’s top education official announced Thursday.

Effective immediately, Oklahoma schools are required to incorporate the Bible as part of the curricula in grades five through 12, according to a memo Superintendent of Public Instruction Ryan Walters sent to all school districts. Schools are instructed to refer to the Bible and the Ten Commandments for their “substantial influence on our nation’s founders and the foundational principles of our Constitution.”

“Immediate and strict compliance is expected,” the memo noted.

Walters said at a state Board of Education meeting Thursday, “We’ll be teaching from the Bible in the classroom to ensure that this historical understanding is there for every student in the state of Oklahoma.”
This looks like one-upmanship with Louisiana!
“This is textbook Christian Nationalism: Walters is abusing the power of his public office to impose his religious beliefs on everyone else’s children,” Rachel Laser, the group’s CEO, said in the statement. Her organization is “ready to step in,” she wrote, though she stopped short of vowing legal action. The group has already sued to block a new Louisiana law requiring the Ten Commandments to be displayed in public schools.
The Superintendent seems to be on a mission from god,,, to make everyone good little Christians.
Walters, a former high school history teacher, has built a national profile over his first year and a half in office as a staunch proponent of incorporating Christian beliefs and teachings into state education policy.

Gov. Kevin Stitt, a Republican, recently approved a package of regulations put forward by Walters that included time for prayer in schools and expanded the state Education Department’s “foundational values” to acknowledge a “Creator” and the existence of good and evil.
However the Oklahoma Supreme Court just shot down another attempt to bring in religion into the school system but the court said no!
But Walters has also drawn pushback. Stitt issued an executive order this month prohibiting state agencies from entering into sole-source contracts with marketing and public relations firms after Walters hired a public relations firm at $200 per hour to help him get national media attention.

The state Supreme Court ruled this week that a state contract to fund a Catholic charter school violated both state and federal law and must be voided. It would have been the country’s first religious charter school.

Walters called the ruling “sanctioned discrimination against Christians” in a statement. “This ruling cannot and must not stand,” he wrote.
The Republicans are kowtowing to the evangelicals every wish in make this a Christian Nation!

But wait, there’s more!
Bibles will be required in public school classrooms in Oklahoma, state officials announced Thursday, the latest development in a years-long debate over introducing religion into public school curriculum that comes just days after the state Supreme Court struck down a proposed publicly funded Catholic charter school as unconstitutional.


The announcement marks a political win for religious conservatives, who for decades have pushed for an increase in religious teaching in public schools, despite widespread pushback over the blurring of public education and religion, an argument backed by the Constitution’s separation of church and state.
Onward, Christian Soldiers
Marching as to war
With the cross of Jesus
Going on before!

Christ the royal Master
Leads against the foe;
Forward into battle
See His banners go!

Onward, Christian Soldiers
Marching as to war
With the cross of Jesus
Going on before!

Like a might army
Moves the Church of God!
Brothers, we are treading
Where the saints have trod!

I’m Worried - The Debate

The New York Times wrote…
President Biden hoped to build fresh momentum for his re-election bid by agreeing to debate nearly two months before he is to be formally nominated. Instead, his halting and disjointed performance on Thursday night prompted a wave of panic among Democrats and reopened discussion of whether he should be the nominee at all.

Over the course of 90 minutes, a raspy-voiced Mr. Biden struggled to deliver his lines and counter a sharp though deeply dishonest former President Donald J. Trump, raising doubts about the incumbent president’s ability to wage a vigorous and competitive campaign four months before the election. Rather than dispel concerns about his age, Mr. Biden, 81, made it the central issue.
But on the other hand AP News reported…
Trump falsely represented the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol as a relatively small number of people who were ushered in by police and misstated the strength of the economy during his administration.

Biden, who tends to lean more on exaggerations and embellishments rather than outright lies, misrepresented the cost of insulin and overstated what Trump said about using disinfectant to address COVID. Here’s a look at the false and misleading claims on Thursday night by the two candidates.
Poynter said this about fact checking,
President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, the presumptive presidential nominees, shared a debate stage June 27 for the first time since 2020, in a feisty confrontation that —  thanks to debate rules — managed to avoid the near-constant interruptions that marred their previous meetings.

Biden, who spoke in a raspy voice at the debate’s start, struggled at times, at one point saying that his administration “finally beat Medicare.”After the debate, during a stop at a Waffle House, Biden told reporters he had a sore throat, according to the pool report.

Trump, meanwhile, repeated numerous falsehoods, including that Democrats want doctors to be able to abort babies after birth.

Trump attacked Biden’s record, blaming inflation and other issues on Biden’s “insane and stupid policies.” Biden questioned Trump’s conduct, noting that Trump is a convicted felon and saying he has the “morals of an alley cat.”
And then we have this little gem...
Worst president rankings
Biden: Presidential historians “voted who was the worst president in American history. “From best to worst. They said he was the worst in all of American history.”

True. The 2024 Presidential Greatness Project Expert Survey, released in February, collected responses from 154 presidential historians, which included current and recent members of the American Political Science Association. The survey ranked Biden as the 14th best president in U.S. history, and put Trump last.

The historians were asked to give every president a score, from 0 to 100. Abraham Lincoln topped the list with an average score of 95, while Biden scored an average of 62.66. Trump averaged just under 11 points.
So what I saw was a man who at ever drop of a hat lies even when he doesn’t have to lie and I saw another man trying to remember facts figures. So your choice this fall is between an old man, and a lying used car salesman that I wouldn’t buy a car from let alone run a country.


I have to wonder if the President stuttering affects his speech and if the President has Parkinson Disease. He behaves just like my brother behaves and he has Parkinson Disease, slow and methodical.

Update: 9:30AM

I have been looking into Parkinson Disease.

What I learned,
Biden had a complete neurological exam in 2023 and the findings… In the June 2023 edition of Care for the Aging an article by Jerald Winakur reports,
He’s a bit stooped, his gait stiffer, and his voice less forceful. His lifelong stutter is mild but manifests at times. In addition, he has some difficulty with throat clearing. According to the publicly available records, his physician of 15 years, Dr. Kevin O’Connor, performed a comprehensive examination on the president on November 19, 2021, and again in early 2023. In his reports, Dr. O’Connor addresses all these issues in turn thoroughly, including appropriate consultations and procedures by ear, nose, and throat, orthopedic, cardiac, neurological, and gastrointestinal specialists.

President Biden’s stiffened gait is explained by arthritis of the spine, old sports injuries, and a relatively recent right midfoot fracture. A neurological examination showed “no findings which would be consistent with any cerebellar or other central neurological disorder, such as stroke, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s or ascending lateral sclerosis.” His workup did reveal that the president has esophageal reflux — a benign, common condition — as a cause of his throat-clearing.


All but the most partisan of us can make a reasonably objective assessment of President Biden’s cognitive capacity by watching him on television. His 2023 State of the Union speech showed him to be lively, feisty, and able to engage appropriately and extemporaneously with the audience — as he also has done during interviews since that time. To this geriatrician, he is not exhibiting signs of dementia. Should he have formal cognitive testing as part of his yearly comprehensive physical examination? Of course he should, and the results should be made public. Indeed, why not ask for the same from all members of Congress over a certain age?
So there might be another reason why he walks and behaves that way besides Parkinson Disease. But I worry about "image" he might be in good health but he sure doesn't look it.

Update: 10:30 AM

I understand where this is coming from…
Growing concerns over President Joe Biden's age and ability to effectively serve a second term—invigorated by a rocky debate against Donald Trump on Thursday—have fueled speculation he could, despite his campaign's forceful denials, drop out of the 2024 presidential race, leaving these Democrats best poised to step into his shoes if he does.


Biden’s age, coupled with his habit of rhetorical gaffes and low approval rating, have fueled speculation among politicos for months about possible Biden replacements, though most of the suggestions are fierce defenders of the president who have rejected any assertions they would challenge Biden.

After a rough debate Thursday in which Biden lost his train of thought, spoke with a hoarse voice and made several verbal flubs, some Donald Trump opponents and Biden allies raised the idea of Biden stepping aside.
My take on the plan of action… Trump is a liar, he lied, and lied and lied all during the debate! Yes, Biden is slow but he remember all those facts and figures, his mistakes were in the number and not outright lies like Trump. While Biden was struggling the figures to get them right.

What I’ll like to see is an ad pointing out all the lies… with a buzzer for each and a big red stamp that says “Lies” go across Tump's face.

Update: 6/29 @ 8:00AM
It is not only here in the U.S. that is worried about the election but...
Foreign diplomats react with horror to Biden’s dismal debate performance
By Kylie Atwood, Nic Robertson, Luke McGee and Jeremy Herb
June 29, 2024

President Joe Biden’s dismal showing at the CNN presidential debate against former President Donald Trump resonated around the world, with foreign diplomats expressing shock and concern while raising questions about the implications for a consequential US election that could upend the foreign policy status-quo should Trump be elected again.

“Hard to watch” is how multiple foreign diplomats described Thursday night’s debate between Biden and Trump to CNN.

The overwhelming sentiment among more than half a dozen diplomats from Europe, the Middle East and Asia whom CNN spoke to was that it was “a bad night for Biden,” as one European diplomat put it.

“It is a sad reality that Biden is old, and he is getting older. We saw it. I had difficulties understanding what he was saying, and I understand English pretty well,” said a second European diplomat.

“Trump ate him alive,” said an Arab diplomat.

“I was shell-shocked. I could not believe my eyes,” an Asian diplomat said of Biden’s performance.
You know who is gleeful over the debate… Putin. His little pet could end up president again.
 “When Putin saw that, he said, you know what, I think we’re going to go in and maybe take my – this was his dream. I talked to him about it, his dream. The difference is he never would have invaded Ukraine. Never,” Trump said.

A Ukrainian politician told CNN he found Trump’s statements on the war in Ukraine “worrying.”

“We’re very concerned because we, more or less, understand what it means for Ukraine, (a) Biden presidency, and we really don’t know what it means for Ukraine, a Trump presidency,” Oleksiy Goncharenko told CNN. “It can be very good, it can be very bad. We just don’t know. And that’s definitely concerning.”

Thursday, June 27, 2024

So How’re You Going To Vote?

(I don't expect you to answer.) Wishful thinking… the Republicans are going to be trounced (Hopefully it is not foolish expectation.) in November I think it is all because of abortion.
Two years ago, millions of young women like me listened to the worry in our mothers’ voices as they explained that we no longer had one of the fundamental rights that their generation fought so tirelessly to gain. We called our doctors asking to be prescribed birth control as soon as possible, in case Republicans planned to come after that next. And we wept tears for not only ourselves, but for all the women growing up alongside and after us.

It’s been two years since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, and the young women of America are tired. We’re exhausted.

Because since then, reproductive freedom has been on the line in every election. Every year is a grating battle to win back the same rights that our parents already had. Every year, women answer the call, driven by frustration and anger that we have to pick up the phone to win back an essential human right in the first place.

Despite overwhelming support for abortion, 21 states have passed abortion bans or restrictions following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that emboldened them to do so. Voters—especially young voters like myself—have been forced to turn our anguish into action, mobilizing every single election to protect abortion in our states. But instead of listening to the very constituents they are meant to serve, Republican extremists are undeterred by the majority opposition to their anti-abortion agenda. They continue to chip away at abortion rights across the country with the ultimate goal of eliminating access.
I think President Biden need to push that in the next four years two more Supreme Court justices will be appointed along with hundreds and hundreds of lower court judges appointed.
It’s easy to get lost in despair. I never imagined I would have to fight every day to get rights back. Growing up, I had bigger dreams of advancing reproductive rights to places they had never gone before. But now, it feels like we are back at square one.

It would be easy for us to let seasoned professionals handle the fight, to sit back and let our parents tell us that it will get better. It would be easy to listen to naysayers who tell us it’s not our time to take action. And it would be easy to just give up. But that is not how we’re going to make change. We’ll make a change by turning out in mass this November to send a clear message: The vast majority of people in every state across the country—red states and blue states—want to protect abortion access.
Vote BLUE!

Our Bodies, Our Choice!

The fight isn’t over, and it won’t be easy, but with generations of women coming together to protect abortion rights, our reproductive freedom and our futures, we will be unstoppable.
And we of the trans community cannot  'rest on our laurels' we have to be out there helping! Our necks are on the line also.
Opinion briefly posted online shows Supreme Court poised to restore emergency abortion access in Idaho
The decision posted online shows that the justices voted 6-3 to dismiss the dispute from their docket.
By Alice Miranda Ollstein and Josh Gerstein
June 26, 2024

Access to emergency abortions in Idaho might soon be restored if a Supreme Court decision briefly posted on its website Wednesday is finalized in the days ahead.

The decision posted online shows that a majority of the justices voted to dismiss the dispute from their docket, according to Bloomberg News, which first reported the appearance of the opinion.

A court spokesperson confirmed that a “document” related to the Idaho abortion case had been “inadvertently” released, but stressed the decision isn’t yet official. The document has since been removed.

If it becomes official, the decision would restore a lower court injunction that sided with the Biden administration and barred the state from enforcing its broad abortion ban with respect to patients who seek emergency care from hospitals.
The White House released this…
This week, the Republican Study Committee, which represents 100% of House Republican leadership and nearly 80% of their members, released a budget that—among its many other anti-choice restrictions—endorses a national abortion ban with zero exceptions for rape or incest.

The Republican Study Committee budget:
  •     Supports eliminating reproductive freedom for all women in every state and puts IVF treatment squarely on the chopping block through House Republicans’ support for the Life at Conception Act.
  •     Endorses banning mifepristone – an FDA-approved, safe and effective medication that has been on the market for more than 20 years.
  •     Supports rolling back policies that help ensure our Nation’s veterans have access to abortion care when their health or lives are at risk or in cases of rape or incest.
  •     Guts funding for contraception—which is supported by the vast majority of Americans on both sides of the aisle—for low-income and uninsured women. This would further erode access to essential health care, from cancer screening to primary care, at a time when state abortion bans have already forced health clinics that provide contraception and other critical health services to close.
Our bodies, our choice!

AP News reported,
Donald Trump still says he’s proud that the Supreme Court justices he nominated overturned Roe v. Wade. Yet he again on Monday avoided tough questions about abortion, including whether he would support a national abortion ban should he return to the White House.
Now why do you think he is avoiding saying anything about abortion… do you think he is caught between a rock and a hard place? He needs to appease his evangelical base while keeping the majority of the voters guessing.

Our bodies, our choice!
Do you remember when the Supreme Court overturned and the Republicans all were praising “State Rights” for abortions, well Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced legislation last fall that is calling for a national abortion ban after 15 weeks.

Our bodies, our choice!

If you are planning on voting for a third party candidate like Green Party’s Adam Hollick or Anita Belle, you’re voting for Trump. Every vote for the third party candidate or the other independent candidate like Kennedy is like voting for Trump. Do you really want Trump to win?

Ballotpedia writes that Trump said this about us…
Trump's campaign website said, "I will sign a new executive order instructing every federal agency to cease all programs that promote the concept of sex and gender transition at any age. I will then ask Congress to permanently stop federal taxpayer dollars from being used to promote or pay for these procedures, and pass a law prohibiting child sexual mutilation in all 50 states. It’ll go very quickly. I will declare that any hospital or healthcare provider that participates in the chemical or physical mutilation of minor youth will no longer meet federal health and safety standards for Medicaid and Medicare—and will be terminated from the program immediately."
Our bodies, our choices!
Meanwhile on the other side of the aisle…
Meet the Coalition of Governors Determined to Protect Abortion Rights for All Americans
The Reproductive Freedom Alliance is a nonpartisan coalition of 23 governors determined to protect abortion rights and reproductive health.
Ms Magazine
By Belle Taylor-McGhee
June 20, 2024

Just hours after the U.S. Supreme Court decided Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health in June 2022, the clock began ticking for women in states harboring abortion bans and trigger laws that, upon Roe’s reversal, would be allowed to take effect. One by one, antiabortion states instituted a patchwork of polices that could make the procedure all but inaccessible depending on your state and your zip code.

It was because of her zip code that one patient, who wished to remain anonymous, drove four hours from Sparks, Nevada (a suburb of Reno), to San Francisco in early April to have an abortion.
She could afford it. But want about those who cannot afford to take time off or to travel out of state? They have three choices… a backroom abortion, trying to do an abortion themselves, or to have the children.
Just hours after the U.S. Supreme Court decided Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health in June 2022, the clock began ticking for women in states harboring abortion bans and trigger laws that, upon Roe’s reversal, would be allowed to take effect. One by one, antiabortion states instituted a patchwork of polices that could make the procedure all but inaccessible depending on your state and your zip code.

It was because of her zip code that one patient, who wished to remain anonymous, drove four hours from Sparks, Nevada (a suburb of Reno), to San Francisco in early April to have an abortion.
Our bodies, our choice!
2019 Women's March on Hartford just before I gave my speech.
Tonight's Debate:

I noticed something about character.
By Nathan Layne and Trevor Hunnicutt
June 22, 2024

 President Joe Biden is hunkered down with aides at Camp David for several days to get ready to debate rival Donald Trump, who is eschewing traditional preparation and instead holding informal policy discussions between campaign stops.

The face-off in Atlanta, at 9 p.m. ET on Thursday (0100 GMT on Friday), will be the earliest presidential debate in modern U.S. history and a critical event for both candidates.

Biden, 81, and former president Trump, 78, are neck-and-neck in national opinion polls, with a considerable slice of the electorate still undecided five months before the Nov. 5 vote.

The debate will provide the starkest contrast yet of the two men, the oldest candidates ever to seek the U.S. presidency, as voters question their age and mental sharpness.

"It's an incredible test of their cognitive competence," said Patrick Stewart, a political science professor at the University of Arkansas who has written a book on presidential debates. "This is our chance to see how much they've declined or if they've declined."
And I think Trump will fail! He will be “Rambling Donny” I think his answers will be nothing but attacks Biden… one big long lies about Biden.
Biden's team will focus on refining the argument that Trump pursues extremist policies on abortion and other issues, is a danger to democracy, and is beholden to the rich donors writing him checks, a campaign official told Reuters.
And Trump will reinforce that with his ranting and lies. He is already making all types wild excuses about why he lost the debate.

It should be interesting tonight, I am going to the retirement party for the head of the Connecticut National Association of Social Workers, I have worked with him many times on different projects and committees.

What makes it interesting is the location of the retirement party, it is at the TPC where the PGA Travelers Championship is played and just finished up on last Sunday. I will probably stay until my back tells me it is time to leave.

What’s Next

We have seen the Republicans go after abortion, trans healthcare, birth control, IVF, marriage equality, and Mifepristone. So what is next on the Republican “hit parade”?

Does the Fourteenth Amendment’s Section 1 on equal protection make tax brackets illegal? Could this be the next blockbuster court case?
Tenth Amendment
April 14, 2016
By Burton W. Folsom

America’s founders rejected the income tax entirely, but when they spoke of taxes they recognized the need for uniformity and equal protection to all citizens. “[A]ll duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States,” reads the U.S. Constitution. And 80 years later, in the same spirit, the Fourteenth Amendment promised “equal protection of the laws” to all citizens.

In other words, the principle behind the progressive income tax—the more you earn, the larger the percentage of tax you must pay—would have been appalling to the founders. They recognized that, in James Madison’s words, “the spirit of party and faction” would prevail if Congress could tax one group of citizens and confer the benefits on another group.
Of course we don't know what the founding fathers thought because there was no income tax back then. What I think pokes holes in their argument is in 1913 the first income tax had brackets! 
  • Major individual, capital gains, and estate tax provisions modeled:
  • Expand the base of the net investment income tax (NIIT) to include nonpassive business income and increase the rates for the NIIT and the additional Medicare tax to reach 5 percent on income above $400,000 (effective 2024)
  • Increase top individual income tax rate to 39.6 percent on income above $400,000 for single filers and $450,000 for joint filers (effective 2024) [My emphasis]
  • Tax long-term capital gains and qualified dividends at ordinary income tax rates for taxable income above $1 million and tax unrealized capital gains at death above a $5 million exemption ($10 million for joint filers)
  • Limit retirement account contributions for high-income taxpayers with large individual retirement account (IRA) balances
  • Tighten rules related to the estate tax
  • Tax carried interest as ordinary income for people earning more than $400,000
  • Limit 1031 like-kind exchanges to $500,000 in gains
It is the increase of the top tax brackets that has the billionaires hopping mad and if they are mad so are the Republicans. So I would not be surprised to a see a tailor made court case going to the Supreme Court. 

Wednesday, June 26, 2024

News Flash! President Biden Pardon Ex-GIs!

     Our Nation has made tremendous progress in advancing the cause of equality for LGBTQI+ Americans, including in the military.  Despite their courage and great sacrifice, thousands of LGBTQI+ service members were forced out of the military because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.  Many of these patriotic Americans were subject to a court-martial.  While my Administration has taken meaningful action to remedy these problems, the impact of that historical injustice remains.  As Commander in Chief, I am committed to maintaining the finest fighting force in the world.  That means making sure that every member of our military feels safe and respected.

     Accordingly, acting pursuant to the grant of authority in Article II, Section 2, of the Constitution of the United States, I, Joseph R. Biden Jr., do hereby grant a full, complete, and unconditional pardon to persons convicted of unaggravated offenses based on consensual, private conduct with persons age 18 and older under former Article 125 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), as previously codified at 10 U.S.C. 925, as well as attempts, conspiracies, and solicitations to commit such acts under Articles 80, 81, and 82, UCMJ, 10 U.S.C. 880, 881, 882.  This proclamation applies to convictions during the period from Article 125’s effective date of May 31, 1951, through the December 26, 2013, enactment of section 1707 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014 (Public Law 113-66).

     The purpose of this proclamation is to pardon only offenses based on consensual, private conduct between individuals 18 and older that do not involve any aggravating factor, including:  

     (1)  conduct that would violate 10 U.S.C. 893a, prohibiting activities with military recruits or trainees by a person in a position of special trust;
     (2)  conduct that was committed with an individual who was coerced or, because of status, might not have felt able to refuse consent;
     (3)  conduct on the part of the applicant constituting fraternization under Article 134 of the UCMJ;
     (4)  conduct committed with the spouse of another military member; or
     (5)  any factors other than those listed above that were identified by the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces in United States v. Marcum as being outside the scope of Lawrence v. Texas as applied in the military context, 60 M.J. 198, 207–08 (2004).

     The Military Departments (Army, Navy, or Air Force), or in the case of the Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, in conjunction with the Department of Justice, shall provide information about and publicize application procedures for certificates of pardon.  An applicant for a certificate of pardon under this proclamation is to submit an application to the Military Department (Army, Navy, or Air Force) that conducted the court-martial or, in the case of a Coast Guard court-martial, to the Department of Homeland Security.  If the relevant Department determines that the applicant satisfies the criteria under this proclamation, following a review of relevant military justice records, the Department shall submit that determination to the Attorney General, acting through the Pardon Attorney, who shall then issue a certificate of pardon along with information on the process to apply for an upgrade of military discharge.  My Administration strongly encourages veterans who receive a certificate of pardon to apply for an upgrade of military discharge.  

     Although the pardon under this proclamation applies only to the convictions described above, there are other LGBTQI+ individuals who served our Nation and were convicted of other crimes because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.  It is the policy of my Administration to expeditiously consider and to make final pardon determinations with respect to such individuals.

     IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-sixth day of June, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-four, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-eighth.

                             JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

I Said It,

I said that trans people and drag queens were just the beginning that the far right-wing evangelicals has marriage equality in their sights.
America Got Gay Marriage, but It Came at a Cost
New York Times
By Omar G. Encarnación
June 24, 2024

It’s a strange time for gay rights in America. As the country nears the 10th anniversary of the legalization of gay marriage nationwide, support for same-sex unions has risen to 70 percent of the American public. But at the same time, L.G.B.T.Q. people are being targeted in ways not seen since the days of Save Our Children, Anita Bryant’s infamous 1977 campaign against gay rights that depicted gay men as human garbage and pedophiles.

In recent years, Republican-controlled state legislatures have banned drag shows, gender-affirming care for minors and adults, and the teaching of sexual orientation from kindergarten through the third grade, including the passage of Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law. Panic about “grooming,” a homophobic slur that exploits people’s worst fears about gay people and children, is having a moment.

Even Obergefell v. Hodges, the 2015 Supreme Court ruling that legalized gay marriage nationally, is under attack. In 2020, Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas cast doubt on the legality of the ruling, which could yet go the same way as Roe v. Wade. The Respect for Marriage Act, passed by Congress in 2022, did not codify the ruling into law and would provide scant protection.
We all knew this was coming, the hand writing was on the wall… they hate anything LGBTQ+ they want us wiped off the face of the earth, they want to bring back pre-Stonewall.
To be sure, extending marriage rights to same-sex couples was a major step for American society. But it did not require Americans to question their fundamental assumptions about L.G.B.T.Q. people. And despite its modesty, the campaign didn’t stop backlash or the sense among conservative activists and lawmakers that attacking L.G.B.T.Q. people is a low-risk proposition.
Yeah, the Republicans know that not many people will stand by us, that we were easy pickings to distract the people from the real issues in the world today… war, poverty, the gap between the have’s and the have’s not.

The author sees the way we worked to get marriage equality and our human rights as working against us now,
Inspired by the civil rights movement’s struggle for equality under the law, the campaign — which ran for roughly two decades until the ruling in 2015 — was framed around rights and benefits. It spotlighted the rights denied to same-sex couples, including tax deductions, inheritance provisions and hospital visitation privileges.

But the message backfired, coming across as sterile, materialistic and unpersuasive. It also invited the criticism that gay people were comparing their struggle for marriage to the fight against racial discrimination by African Americans. A different message, centered on love and commitment, was introduced late in the campaign to show that same-sex couples wanted marriage for the same reasons heterosexuals do.

Neither messaging, however, made the case for L.G.B.T.Q. equality beyond pleading for opening the institution of marriage to same-sex couples. For the most part, gay marriage activists did not defend the morality of homosexual unions. Nor did they refute the claim by the Christian right that gay marriage was a threat to the family and religious freedom.

Um… I don’t know… I think he is off base.
But just because the conditions surrounding the struggle for gay marriage were different abroad does not mean that there’s nothing for American gay activists to learn. After all, the culture war over gay marriage in countries like Spain, Brazil and Ireland was won with smaller and less seasoned gay rights movements than in the United States and against formidable opponents like the Catholic Church and the evangelical movement.
I think this guy is way out in left field. If you look at the polls you will see strong support for LGBTQ+ community. According to Gallup...
Same-sex marriage: 69% of Americans believe that marriage between same-sex couples should be legal, according to a Gallup poll conducted in May 2024. This is near the record high of 71% recorded in 2022 and 2023.
And according to a survey by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) as reported by the Guardian,
Nondiscrimination protections: Support for policies protecting LGBTQ+ Americans from discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations fell slightly from 80% in 2022 to 76% in 2023.
There is strong support for our rights by Democrats, and independents, but even among Republicans there is some support. It is the far right-wing agenda that wants to do away with us, unfortunately that is the cult that is controlling the Republican party right now. But the PRRI survey shows the Republican lies are having the effect on public opinion. We need to better educate the public about healthcare for minors and counter their lies about puberty blockers, and surgery for minors. The Times article ends with,
American gay activists would be wise to recalibrate their activism, shifting from a rights-based approach, with its emphasis on litigation, to one more oriented toward citizenship and dignity. They may also want to embrace a more ambitious and idealistic mind-set, aiming squarely at public persuasion. Modesty has its virtues, of course. But when it comes to struggles for fairness and equality, it pays to go big and aim high.
Um… sir. We have been doing that. But if you follow the news you would know that the Republicans just don’t care about public opinion, they care about radicalizing their evangelical base.

It Is Going To Be A Long Year!

A long and drawn out year until next June.
CBS News
By Melissa Quinn
June 24, 2024

The Supreme Court on Monday said it will consider whether a Tennessee law that bans gender-affirming health care for transgender minors violates the Constitution, setting the stage for a major decision on transgender rights in its next term.

The justices agreed to review a lower court decision upholding Tennessee's ban, which was appealed by the Justice Department and transgender youth who argue that the laws are outside the bounds of the 14th Amendment. 

The case will be argued in the Supreme Court's next term, which begins in October, with a decision likely by the end of June 2025. The dispute thrusts the Supreme Court into the center of a politically fraught issue that has sparked a wave of legislative action by state lawmakers.

The outcome of the case could have a nationwide impact, since more than 20 states have in recent years enacted laws restricting treatments like puberty-blocking drugs, hormone therapy or surgeries for minors experiencing gender dysphoria.

The Supreme Court has never weighed in directly on the constitutionality of these bans, and the justices intervened in one case involving an Idaho law on an emergency basis. In April, the court agreed to let Idaho officials enforce the state's ban on gender-affirming medical care for nearly all transgender minors statewide and narrowed the scope of a lower court's order that blocked the law from taking effect.
It is going to be a tough year, they will probably hear the case in the fall and issue their decree in June and it will be anyone’s guess on their ruling.
The Tennessee law, known as SB1 and enacted in March 2023, prohibits health care providers from "prescribing, administering or dispensing any puberty blocker or hormone" if the treatment is to "enable a minor to identify with, or live as, a purported identity inconsistent with the minor's sex" or treat "purported discomfort or distress from a discordance between the minor's sex and asserted identity."

While the law also bars surgical procedures undertaken for the same purpose, that restriction is not at issue in the case. Puberty blockers or hormones can be administered to treat conditions like precocious puberty, disease, a congenital defect or physical injuries.
The history of trans cases before the current Supreme Court has been a mixed bag of rulings. Maybe it is wishful thinking but I think the court is leaning slightly in our favor.

Lambda Legal had this to say in a press release,
The Supreme Court of the United States will hear a pivotal legal challenge against a 2023 Tennessee law that bans gender-affirming medical care for transgender youth. The Court granted review based on a petition by the U.S. government, which intervened in our case, LW. v. Skrmetti, brought by Lambda Legal, American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Tennessee, and Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, on behalf of Tennessee families and a medical provider. The case will be briefed this fall and will be the Court’s first on the merits regarding equal access to medical care for transgender adolescents.

This harmful and cruel law actively ignores the science and medical consensus supporting this essential, sometimes life-saving care. We will urge the Supreme Court to swiftly and strongly reject this law, which inflicts misery and wreaks havoc on the lives of transgender youth and their families.

We are grateful that transgender youth and their families will now have their day in the highest court, and we will not stop fighting to ensure access to this life-saving, medically necessary care.