Posts Tagged Sexual Equality

THE TRANSGENDER POTTY BROUHAHA HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH REST ROOMS, AND EVERYTHING TO DO WITH SEXUAL DISCRIMINATION!

NOTE:  With minor changes, this is a repeat of a prior post, which was first published on March 1, 2016.  I have tweaked it slightly, in order clarify some points, and to update it for the ignorance of the Trump White House.

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The equality of the Constitutional Rights of all Americans—regardless of age, sex, race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, etc.—are guaranteed under our Constitution.   As some Republican-led states have tried, in various and devious ways, to circumvent these rights, the U. S. Supreme Court has reaffirmed them over and over again.   But these ignorant attempts, costly to the taxpayers, continue on.

Usually such legislation has been initiated by individual states, and anointed with seemingly benign titles; however, those are merely dog whistles to excite the political base.  In fact, the true intent of such laws is often quite different from advertised.  Titles such as “Pastor Protection” or “Women’s Protection”, or suggesting that they are intended to protect small businesses, are really smoke screens.

Such laws can only be intended to deny specific constitutional rights of others.  here can be no other relevance!  Who’s going to sue a clergymen whose religion does not condone same-sex marriage for not performing a ceremony?  Or suing a caterer or pastry shop that refuses to provide services for an LGBT event?   Or a woman getting an abortion without having considered the various implications ahead of time?

This month (March 2016), North Carolina and Mississippi passed laws that require transgender persons to use rest rooms, in schools and public buildings, that confirm with the sex noted on their birth certificates.  (Who carries a Birth Certificate?)  Now, consider how asinine this is.  Would a woman who was born a man look for a urinal in the Ladies Room?  Likewise, would a man who was born a woman really try to use a urinal in the Mens Room?   In each case, they would go into a stall to…(well) GO.

These states have already seen major companies decide to cancel expanding facilities there.  Similarly, bills such as the current  “Potty Bill” have resulted in major sports leagues and national conventions shifting their biggest events to other states.  And as expected, individual tourism is seeing a fall-off, as well.

Such legislation truly serves no purpose!   As noted, there is nothing to see here!  The LGTB Community is not a haven for sexual perverts, no more than the general population.  And unfortunately, the larger cities, which tend to be more open-minded, will generally be the losers when corporate  expansion, sporting events, conventions, and tourism will be lost!   So, the areas that are trying to do the right thing are the ones that pay the price—for Bigotry.

More recently, the Trump Regime has suggested that such laws should be left up to the individual states; however, that is a lame attempt “not to take a stand”!  Just considering the past inane attempts to pass racist and bigoted legislation, by the individual states, just points-out what a patchwork quilt of laws, with conflicting values, America will have!  But, as the original post notes, isn’t “Who Goes Where” really a question of Reality?

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CHINA’S SOCIAL ENGINEERING CONTINUES TO HINDER ITS ECONOMIC PROSPERITY

China’s economic growth, over the past 35 years, has enabled its Economy, by measure of the Gross Domestic Product, to rise to be second only to that of the U. S.  Ironically, many of the other nations of East and Southeast Asia have also done so, by similarly educating the girls, as well as the boys.  Educating females doubles the labor force and, as the economy grows, the Chinese People advance into higher pay-scale jobs. The larger workforce also enables country to move-up, into more-advance ed industries, as we as increases the Nation’; several standard-of-living.

China, like India, is held back, however, by its extremely large 1.35 billion population.  Unfortunately, China has been slow to expand beyond its initial economic explosion.  Currently, only 25% of Chinese workers are employed in the Industrial Sector, while the remaining 75% are still less-educated, and work mostly on small family farms, or repair and retail shops.  China should hardly be considered a fully-developed economy.

During the early years, following the Chinese Communist Revolution, babies were encouraged, and the birth rate per woman of child-bearing age rose to around six.  In 1956, Premier Zhou Enlai encouraged women to voluntarily curb the number of babies they had, but that didn’t work.  So finally, Chairman Deng Xiaoping established a One-Child Policy in 1980, which carried harsh penalties for non-compliance.  Over time, the Chinese birth rate per woman declined from 4.4 to 1.64, which is now far too low to sustain a stable work force.

Such Social Engineering has been a considerable hindrance in maintaining a reliable labor pool, where one generation replaces another.  Currently, only one-quarter of China’s population has high-paying jobs in the cities, while the large majority of Chinese are still living and toiling in small, inefficient jobs, and barely existing above subsistence levels.  China also has some questionable policies, which seem intended to keep city dwellers tied to their home provinces. (But, that is beyond the scope of this post.)

There are three main problems, that I see, with the One-Child Policy: it has disrupted the natural rotation of generations into the labor pool, as a large portion of the current workforce is approaching retirement; although there were multiple exceptions to the One-Child Policy, they were not disseminated by regional and local officials; and parts of the policy—especially the Forced-Abortions—have caused anger and frustration on the part of many young couples.

Just last year, the Telegraph (UK) newspaper posted the linked article about a Chinese woman, who was eight-months pregnant, being forced by government officials to have an abortion, in order to save her husband’s job: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/11858723/China-Forced-abortion-late-term-to-avoid-one-child-policy.html.
Additionally, consider the effect that forced-abortions, mostly involving girls, has had on the boy-girl ratio.  When the babies born today reach age 20, consider the potential side-effects of many frustrated men looking for wives.

Yes, China has pulled-off an economic miracle; but, it has also created a social disaster.  Educate the girls: yes, by all means!  But, leave the social engineering to Mother Nature.  Here’s my rough outline of what China needs to do:  build infrastructure out to the rural areas, including lower and medium-level factories; emphasize consumer spending in order to increase domestic consumption; totally eliminate the One-Child Policy: and pay bonuses to move young women, from one region to another, in order to massage the deficiency of women in some regions–or even consider recruiting some from other countries, such as Malaysia, Singapore or Taiwan.  China needs to clean-up its mess!

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DONALD J. TRUMP—A TIME BOMB JUST WAITING TO GO OFF!

At a press conference in Doral, Florida, last Wednesday, Donald Trump encouraged Russia to hack into    U. S. State Department Emails, and said that it could profit handsomely by providing them to the American media.  After his inability to shift the focus to the DNC Emails, when questioned later, Trump suggested that he was just using sarcasm.  As a candidate for the U. S. Presidency, however, Trump should know that any form of humor, including sarcasm, is totally improper when discussing the theft of intelligence information by any foreign enemy—let alone our most dangerous one.

Donald Trump seems to exist in a parallel universe: one in which he is totally divorced from reality.  He also seems to have a combination of personality disorders—compulsiveness, everything in excess, and his narcissism leaves little room for listening to reason.  The GOP—House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Party Chairman Reince Priebus—seems to believe that it can control him.  But Donald J. Trump cannot even control himself!

Trump’s actions last Wednesday border on both Treason and Sedition; but, I will leave that to the Government attorneys to pursue.  Based on what he said last week, however, there are a number of Congressman—from both parties—who are concerned about the Daily Intelligence Briefings that he will now receive.  Although it will contain classified information, both Secretary Clinton and Mister Trump will receive exactly the same briefing, and it will be a plain “Vanilla” version.

Personally, I am not so concerned about the actual information that he will receive as much as I am about what he might do with it.  Based on lengthy interviews that I read about two men, who basically wrote books touted as only ghostwritten by them, I have my doubts.  Each man said that Donald Trump only has the attention span of a small child, and each doubted that he had even read the books that he supposedly “wrote”.

Just think about a person having access to classified information and they perhaps might not understand what the raw data means, its importance if it were to fall into the wrong hands, or the potential danger that could be unleashed.  Now, consider that that information were provided to someone who talks constantly, is always trying to impress everyone with his superior intellect, and is literally willing to shoot-from the-lip, so to speak, we do have a big problem.  Legalities of last week’s comments aside, Donald J. Trump, with classified information, would be a time bomb just waiting to go off!

NOTE: To appease the GOP that he was indeed a serious candidate, a couple of months ago Donald J. Trump spent one hour with former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. Dr. Kissinger is arguably the foremost authority on Foreign Affairs alive today. I’m sure that Dr. Kissinger appreciated all that he learned from Donald Trump at their meeting.

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AMERICA’S “POTTY WARS”

The equality of rights for Americans, regardless of age, sex, race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, etc, are guaranteed for all Americans under our Constitution.   As some Republican-led states have tried, in various and devious ways, to circumvent these rights, the U. S. Supreme Court has reaffirmed them over and over again.   But these attempts, costly to the taxpayers, continue on.

Usually such legislation is initiated, by the states, and billed with seemingly benign title; however, they are merely dog whistles to excite the political base; because, the true intent is quite different than advertised. Titles such as “Pastor Protection”, or to protect small businesses, “Women’s Protection” are really smoke screens, intended to deny specific constitutional rights of others.  Who’s going to sue a clergymen whose religion does not condone same-sex marriage for not performing a ceremony, suing a caterer or pastry shop for refusing to cater or bake a cake for an LGBT event, or get an abortion without having thought the various pros and cons through?

This month, North Carolina and Mississippi passed laws that require transgender persons to use rest rooms, in schools and public buildings, that confirm with the sex noted on their birth certificates.  Now, consider how asinine this is. Would a woman who was born a man look for a urinal in the Ladies Room? Likewise, would a man who was born a woman really try to use a urinal in the Mens Room?  In each case, they would go into a stall to…(well) GO.

These states have already seen major companies decide to cancel expanding facilities in those states. Similarly, what is commonly referred to as the “Potty Bill” has resulted in major sports leagues and national conventions shifting major events to other states.  And as expected, individual tourism is seeing a fall-off, as well.

Such legislation truly serves no purpose.  As noted, there is nothing to see here!  The LGTB Community is not a haven for sexual perverts, no more than the general population.  And unfortunately, the larger cities, which tend to be more open-minded, is generally where the corporate expansion, sporting events, conventions are.   They’re the real losers.  So, the areas that are trying to do the right thing are the ones that pay the price—for BIGOTRY.

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SCOTUS–WILL THEY OR WON’T THEY?

Legal scholars must really be in Heaven, trying to parse the words, consider the “What ifs?” and weigh the various options regarding Gay Marriage in the U.S.  This past week, the Supreme Court agreed to hear a case on the issue.  Until recently, Federal District Courts had been lining-up, one by one, in overturning state bans.  In such situations, where there is agreement among the Lower Courts, the Supreme Court generally doesn’t interfere.

In early November, however, the 6th U.S. Court of Appeals (Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee) upheld the bans of the four states and, accordingly SCOTUS will finally step-in.  The Court has re-written the “question permitted” in the Petition, which is highly unusual.  That question phrases what exactly the Court will be ruling on.  Some legal pundits feel that the Court might be phrasing the issue in such manner as to be telegraphing its own preferred outcome.  But, others think not!

Another interesting point is that when the Court hears the oral arguments in April, it is separating them into two separate parts:  the right to marry, and the right to have out-of-state marriages recognized.  The Court’s Ruling is expected to be handed-down in June.  Obviously, if the Court does rule in favor of the Right to Marry, then the second point becomes a meaningless one.

Many questions abound and I am sure that much more will be written about this until the day that SCOTUS announces its final Decision.  The linked article from the NY Times provides a more in-depth discussion on this matter: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/18/us/supreme-court-same-sex-marriage.html?emc=edit_ae_20150117&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=64667462&_r=0.

The article points out a possible middle path, rather than a Decision either For or Against same-sex marriage.  When the Court struck-down the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013, it basically allowed each of the 50 states (plus the District) to decide the issue for itself.  It did become somewhat of a moot point, however, once the IRS ruled that it would allow all married couples, regardless of their state of residence, to enjoy the benefits of Marriage for Income and Estate Tax purposes.

But obviously, the emotional idea of having one’s union being equally recognized is also quite, quite important to most couples.  That’s why I truly believe that the Court must finally put a stop to all this nonsense, and make a decisive ruling. Having both Mothers of a newborn named on the Birth Certificate or a Gay Partner on a Death Certificate, for instance, are just two among many issues which should, and must, finally be resolved.

We’ll know in June…hopefully!

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MAYBE COLLEGE FOOTBALL CAN LEARN FROM THE SAME-SEX MARRIAGE ISSUE

A Regional Director for the National Labor Relations Board has ruled that football players, at Northwestern University, can unionize and thereby negotiate for Pay and Benefits.  An Appeal is scheduled for April 9 before the full NLRB Board in Washington, D. C.  This is a topic that has been kicking-around the Sports World for years and years.  And, it makes for good conversation at bars all over America.

Colleges in the U. S. have been playing a version of football since that first game–actually a combination of rugby and soccer–in late 1869, when Princeton University met Rutgers University on the playing field.  The idea of college athletes being paid for their services has only come into play since really, really Big Money entered College Sports in the modern era.  Money has been a key factor, mostly in Basketball and Football; however, football programs bring in most of the Revenue.

I believe that many colleges and universities tend to treat the so-called student-athletes as pawns.  They enroll them in school, expect high performance on game day and, perhaps, spit them out afterward.  College athletes spend a considerable amount of time in practice, conditioning, travel and the actual game participation.  And, many of these students are not on scholarship and the question of long-term health care and rehabilitation for sports-related injuries remains in question.

College Sports earns more than Ten Billion Dollars each year.  Big-Time Coaches net multi-Million Dollar contracts, many schools’ overall sports programs are funded by the big-two and, of course, college presidents receive their fair share.  But, what do the athletes who sweat, suffer injury, miss classes and otherwise compete get?

Last year around this time, I wrote about:

1.  Kevin Ross who, after playing four years of college basketball at Creighton University, https://thetruthoncommonsense.com/2013/04/07/are-student-athletes-failed-by-the-system/, realized that he could not read at even a high school level.  He went back to school and was assigned to eighth grade. Then, he eventually sued Creighton since it had “accepted” him even though his ACT (college entrance exam) ranked him in the bottom quartile, while the average Creighton freshman ranked in the top 27%.  Also, many of his classes did not even count toward a degree.

2.  Then, there is the case of Kevin Ware, a University of Louisville basketball player, who suffered a compound fracture in his right leg toward the end of a March Madness semi-final game, last year.  When he couldn’t play this year, he was “red-shirted” (will practice, but not compete in games) for 2014.  What does that injury do for his potential professional career?  If, let’s say after another year, the school drops him, who will be responsible for long-term medical and rehabilitation expenses?  Or does the school just relinquish all responsibility for medical bills.

There are many examples of universities failing to live-up to their responsibilities toward student-athletes; however, these two come to mind due to the Men’s Basketball Tournament which is winding-down this weekend.  But, let’s focus on football; because, that’s where the money is; and the’s what the recent NLRB ruling, with Northwestern college football, was all about.

Last August, the IRS declared that it would recognize legal Same-Sex Marriages, performed in any state, as being valid for Income and Estate Tax, as well as Employee Benefits, regardless of the couple’s state of residence.  With that, I suggested that state prohibitions against Same-Sex Marriage were becoming a moot point.  The link is as follows: https://thetruthoncommonsense.com/2013/08/30/gay-lesbian-the-irs-will-now-recognize-your-marriage/.

Both Large and Small Business seems to have also jumped onto the bandwagon when it recently lobbied Arizona Governor Jan Brewer to Veto that state’s so-called “Religious Freedom” Law, which apparently was really intended to withhold service to Gays and Lesbians.  Likewise, the Tourism Industry has started to telegraph its displeasure for relinquishing so much business to states, like California and New York, that are catering to Same-Sex Marriages.  Once agin, Money Speaks!

This issue regarding college football teams (or other sports teams) unionizing has brought-up an interesting conundrum.  Federal Law applies to private colleges and universities; however, the respective state laws apply to state universities.  Might we expect the state legislatures to join together to create some sort of a by-pass on this issue? Perhaps allow Federal Labor Law to prevail.  Stranger things have happened.

Now, if you go to any state capitol (or business, neighborhood, bar or restaurant) in the Country, chances are that you will find a large number of college football fans–especially among the alumni of their state’s–or neighboring–major universities.  So, what do these colleagues do prior to the Big Game?  They harass or “trash-talk” each other.  So, I’m sure that these Good Ole Boys, and more than a few Gals, can find a work-around with regard to the Federal-State Law conundrum regarding college athletes being paid.

Can you imagine on that cold, gray day in November if that Big-Game cannot be played, because one school is public and the other is private?  That’s never going to happen!  Perhaps they can just look at how the Same-Sex Marriage issue has become a moot point–and they will find a work-around!

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WHOSE PARADE IS IT ANYWAY?

Mayor Bill de Blasio, of New York City, will skip next Monday’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade, because the organizers will not allow Gays and Lesbians to march openly.  Marty Walsh, the Mayor of Boston, will also skip the annual parade in Boston for the same reason; however, he is trying to mediate a settlement, which all parties can be comfortable with.

In New York, it appears that Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, is considered to be The Parade Authority. You might recall that, when Pope Francis I, during a return flight from Rio de Janeiro to Rome, was asked about the homosexual lifestyle, he responded: “Who am I to judge?”  The Vatican did quickly reaffirmed that it was not changing its stance with regard to Same Sex Marriages.  But, if Francis is willing to, at least, “live and let live”, why can’t Cardinal Dolan? Does he envision himself in the role of St. Peter, as the Gatekeeper to the Pearly Gates?

Perhaps Cardinal Dolan believer that the St. “Paddy’s” Day Parade is a Catholic Event.  Every year, the Grand Marshall seems to check with the Archbishop for approval as to who may march.  There seem to be differences of opinion as to who organized the first parade in New York–British Protestant Soldiers, the Free-Scot Society (believe it or not) or Irish Catholics from what is now the Republic of Ireland (established in 1922).  So who, if anyone, really “owns” the Parade?

Maureen Dowd, a Columnist for the NY Times, who is Catholic and Irish, wrote the linked piece, http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/26/opinion/dowd-parade-marches-backward.html?_r=0.   Ms. Dowd believes that the LGBT Community ought to stop fighting it so hard; because,they  surely have better–More Fun–things to do.

Back to my question, however, does anyone or any Group really need to own–think Control–the St. Patrick’s Day Parade? Virtually every New York Mayor–whether they were Catholic, Protestant or Jew–has walked in the Parade.  Route. Marchers have also come from all walks of life, even homosexuals (although not openly).   So, what’s with the holiday bigotry?   Isn’t it better to raise everyone up, rather than to put some other group down?

Can’t we all be Irish on St. Paddy’s Day, Italian on Columbus Day, Polish on Pulaski Day, etc?  Yes, last celebrated in New York, on October 6, 2013, it celebrates the contribution of Casimir Pulaski, a Polish Military Officer, who fought (and died) with the Revolutionary Army, against the British.  Isn’t that what we truly need: a time for people to come together, rejoice in our common values and friendship…and Party?  

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