laughing to the brink of death

•March 19, 2009 • Leave a Comment
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DL Hughley at a Palin rally

•January 6, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Palestine

•January 3, 2009 • 1 Comment

For the past few years, I’ve gone back and forth between wanting to be informed about world issues and not caring to inform myself because it is too depressing to hear about everyday. When I got off work today, I found myself amidst a group of over 200 protesters chanting “Free Free Palestine” and “Stop Bombing Gaza” while waving Palestinian flags. I saw women in their abayas shouting their answers to reporters because they are so enraged at what is happening to their homeland. Kids with papers pinned to their jackets reading “Stop Killing Children.” The keffiyeh was present in groves, but this time they weren’t just a hipster fashion accessory. This time, they represented support of the Palestinian struggle. (The keffiyeh is the checkered-type scarf that you can see around the necks of motherfuckers like Kanye West and Chris Brown and hipsters all around. I’ll admit, I have one, but I won’t wear it out so I can avoid being branded as someone who wears it for the fashion and not for what it represents. I’m a snob like that.)

The problem with trying to talk about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is that it is so god damn complicated. I have taken a few classes on Middle Eastern and Islamic culture and learned a little about the history of the conflict. In short, it started in 1916 when the British issued a declaration basically promising the creation of some Jewish homeland, and many Zionists supported its creation in  Palestine. Arabs said that if a Jewish state was created in their land, they would invade it. Then the U.N. had this partition agreement in 1947 which divided the area into Jewish and Arab states. In my opinion, this is where the first flame burst out in this whole disaster. The area was divided DISPROPORTIONATELY, favoring the Jews. I don’t remember the numbers, but by looking at the population of Jews and Arabs it was clear that the Jews were allotted more land than the Arabs. I think it was something like the Arabs were about 70% of the population and Jews were 30%, and the Jews got 60% of the land while Arabs only got 40%. That doesn’t seem fair, does it? So in 1948 the pissed off cheated Arabs decided to fight for what they believe was land that should been theirs. To the Palestinians, this was “al-nakba” which means “the catastrophe.” The Jewish call it the War of Independence/Liberation. The Jewish army was much stronger and ended up taking over parts of the Arab state, gaining 50% more land than what they were allotted in the partition (meaning EVEN MORE of a disparity of land between the Arabs and Jews).

While all this fighting was going on, some sneaky politics were going down. The Jewish state of Israel was established in 1948 as a new country recognized by the U.N. and the US and British were quick to support them. This means, when the Arabs decided to fight back after the uneven land partitioning, Israel had the support (aka money, weapons, ammo, etc.) of both the US and British governments. Fast-forward to the 1967 war when the Arabs tried to regain more land. Israel was able to gain the land fought for by the Egyptians and the Egyptians ended up basically saying “Fuck it, you win.”

After the 9/11 attacks, Israel and Palestine officially agreed to a cease-fire but it was not implemented. Israel began building a “security wall” in the West Bank to prevent suicide bombers from getting in. When the International Court of Justice told Israel that the wall is a violation of international law, they also ordered that they take it down. Israel refused but said it would modify the wall. Later, their own court, the Israeli Supreme Court, ruled that the wall didn’t violate international law. This is a country the US continues to support. A country that still occupies Palestinian land for “security reasons” which I guess is Israeli-talk for being a fuckin bully.

And here were are, at the present day. Hamas is fucking up Israel with rockets, Israel is bombing the Gaza Strip (even though they both agreed to a truce in June 2008). People are dying. I’m not sure what it was, but something struck me about this most recent update in the Arab-Israeli conflict. I have spent hours writing this, reading up on what I learned awhile back.. I have so many questions but I know there are no clear answers. I don’t see this ending in my lifetime. I’m wondering whether or not to keep reading about the new death tolls everyday.

It’s all so exhausting.

Keith Olbermann

•November 13, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Dr. Laura Schlessinger

•November 12, 2008 • Leave a Comment

The anonymous open letter that surfaced in 2000:

Dr. Laura, the ultra-right-wing conservative radio talk show host, has said that she has become an observant Orthodox Jew and in doing so has claimed homosexuality an abomination in accordance with Leviticus 18:22
and cannot be condoned under any circumstance. The following response is an open letter to Dr. Laura that was posted on the internet.

“Dear Dr. Laura,

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God’s law. I have learned a great deal from your show and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend
the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination…End of debate.


However, I do need some advice from you regarding some other elements of God’s Laws and how to follow them:

1. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that applies to Mexicans but not Canadians. Why can’t I own Canadians?

2. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

3. I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanness – Lev. 15:19-24. The problem is how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

4. When I burn a bull on the altar of sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor to the Lord – Lev. 1:9. The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

5. I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself, or should I ask the police to do it?

6. A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination – Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don’t agree. Can you settle this? Are there ‘degrees’ of abomination?

7. Lev. 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have an defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here?

8. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden in Lev. 19:27. How should they die?

9. I know from Lev. 11: 6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

10. My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev. 19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them (Lev. 25:10-16)? Couldn’t we just burn them to death at a private family affair like we do with people who sleep with in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)

I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy considerable expertise in such matters, so I am confident you can help. Thank you again for reminding us that God’s word is eternal and unchanging.

Your adoring fan.”

I challenge ANYONE reading to argue with this… please, I need a laugh. Or also, anyone feel free to explain why homosexuality was picked out of all the different sins and abominations to be the big issue in America. Why shouldn’t the others be followed as well? I mean, it’s only fair..right?

scoff.

And Dr. Laura.. now THAT’s a piece of work. Calling her son in Afghanistan a hero.. check out what was found on his myspace page! Pretty sure they’re of his own creation..

http://bp3.blogger.com/_0qTU784XP0M/Ru26d0kJZ5I/AAAAAAAABqE/X_wUiECobzo/s1600-h/l_5f021368e47debccdc58dedd52d6066b.jpg

http://bp0.blogger.com/_0qTU784XP0M/Ru26QEkJZ4I/AAAAAAAABp8/datSs-p1OQo/s1600-h/l_9b2055cafddf88b096d26650b369518f.jpg

Excerpts from a blog entry…

“Before I left L.A. I destroyed my life. I killed every friendship. I hurt a loving devoted and sweet girlfriend, driving her to bulemia and sex with strange men for a sense of caring, a caring I robed her of. I slept with another girl gazing into her eyes, wispering sweetly “I’ll love you forever” knowing damn fucking well I was leaving for a year. I crashed my car. Threw handfulls of nickles at whores and people walking to church alike. Then threw food, then silverware, then back to nickles.”

“I fucked everything up so bad that there was only the future. I was lonely. I’m not anymore. I except my blessing and curse. I love that my life is like getting head from the most beautiful big titted blonde with a double barreled shotgun in my mouth and everytime I want to cum the trigger pulls back just enough to think about burning dead puppies and AIDS. I envy people who’s luck has run out, they know what to do to mold the future. Any day at any moment my luck will run out. I don’t think about it though, hinders my ability to just wing it, Join the Army.”


WOW I don’t think a woman whose son turned out like this should give advice to anyone. Kinda like how Britney Spears’ mom was going to write a parenting book. And I gotta say, I feel really proud to be an American, knowing that’s the kind of lowlife motherfuck that’s representing and defending this country. It’s no surprise we’re a greatly hated nation.. not when you remember who’s out there in our name.

Furthermore, she’s a big steaming pile of bullshit. After naked pictures taken of her in the 70’s were made public, her audience learned that she is an adulterer, she intentionally had a kid out of wedlock and cohabited with a man before marriage. No big deal really, except that she explicitly denounces such behavior in others. Sure people change, but keeping that a secret and denying it all when it first comes out? Accepting your past and embracing it as a part of you, even if you aren’t proud of it.. that’s better than denying what you know to be true. Because then you’re a liar too. Clearly she’s not a real person and instead is merely a manifestation of the way she wants the world to see her… it’s also possible she’s just a hologram.

Next tattoo: magpies

•November 11, 2008 • 1 Comment

So I already have the nest:

nest

Next is the birds. I originally wanted barn swallows but thought that they were a little too colorful for the black/shading of the nest. Then I thought about having scissor-tailed flycatchers but their tails are too long.. plus, the nest/eggs don’t match up for either of those birds. Then I saw some mockingbird eggs and thought, “Hey, that looks just like my tattoo!” So up until now, I was planning on getting mockingbirds. Then I thought to just look into magpies, since they’re a little prettier and really bad ass, and their nest/eggs look basically like my tattoo as well.

This one I’m getting for sure, on the back/side of my calf, going toward the nest..

magpie

The rest I’m planning on merging so I can get certain elements of each, going away from the nest on the side of my calf:

magpie2

magpie3

magpie4

Very excite! Need to save money though 😦

Different cultures regard magpies differently, I like how my Chinese half thinks:

“Magpie symbolic meanings take on a brighter note in the East, where the Chinese regard the magpie as a good luck symbol, joy, marital bliss, sexual happiness, and long lasting fortune.

When the Chinese hear the cry of a magpie it is said to be an announcement of the arrival of friends and family.

The ancient Roman’s viewed the magpie as a creature of high intellect and reasoning powers. She is also an attribute of Bacchus, the God of wine.

In Native American animal lore, the magpie was also viewed as having intellect. However, more often than not she was faulted for trickery and her intelligence was typically used in deceptive schemes. She cannot be judged too harshly thought because her tricks are always played out with a light-hearted, good-natured intention.

As you can see, the magpie symbolic meanings are as diverse and colorful as the magpie herself. Her messages are many, and she gives them to us with a free and happy heart.”

Also cool about the magpie: only non-mammal that can recognize itself in a mirror. Here’s a short article about the study:

“Self-recognition, it has been argued, is a hallmark of advanced cognitive abilities in animals. It was previously thought that only the usual suspects of higher cognition—some great apes, dolphins, and elephants—were able to recognize their own bodies in a mirror.

Psychologist Helmut Prior and colleagues have shown evidence of self-recognition in magpies—a species with a brain structure very different from mammals.

The researchers subjected the magpies to a mark test, wherein a mark is placed on the subject’s body in such a way that it can only be seen in a mirror. When the magpies engaged in activity that was directed towards the mark (e.g. scratching at it), the researchers were able to conclude that these birds recognized the image in the mirror as themselves, and not another animal.

These findings not only indicate that non-mammalian species can engage in self-recognition behaviour, but they also show that self-recognition can occur in species without a neocortex. This area is thought to be crucial to self-recognition in mammals, and its absence in this case suggests that higher cognitive skills can develop independently along separate evolutionary lines.

Mammals and birds have developed vastly different brain structures, and future studies will be able to further examine how these structures converge to produce similar cognitive abilities.”

So magpies are fuckin cool. I’d love to get it before the new year….

Prop (upd)8

•November 11, 2008 • Leave a Comment

“Lawmakers Join Call to Overturn Prop. 8

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – More than one-third of California’s lawmakers are adding their voices to the chorus calling on the state’s highest court to overturn the prohibition on same-sex marriage approved by voters last week.

Forty-four members of the California Legislature filed a friend-of-the-court brief Monday in support of a lawsuit seeking to invalidate Proposition 8 on the grounds that voters did not have the authority to make such a dramatic change in state law.

The brief argues that the gay marriage ban improperly usurped the state Supreme Court’s duty to protect minority groups from discrimination. Proposition 8 overturned the court’s May decision that legalized same-sex marriage.

Senate President Pro Tempore Don Perata and Assembly Speaker Karen Bass are among the signers.”

TIP OF THE HAT to people recognizing that issues like this shouldn’t even be decided by voters.

WAG OF MY FINGER to those who will try to continue their mission of discrimination by keeping this in place. If you replace “gay” with any race or religion, people would see how fucked this is. I’ve heard the argument that race is something you’re born with or have no control over, and being gay is a choice so it’s not an equal argument, but what about religion? I should ask some Jesus freaks I know what they think about that. If someone wanted to discriminate against you, not just by their behavior but by their LAWS, just because you’re a Christian, how would you react? You were not born Christian – one must accept that Jesus Christ is their savior and that after dying on the crucifix for our sins he rose from the dead three days later. I could go on forever, but I’ll stop for now. I have plenty more to say on the matter but I guess I’ll do it in parts so I don’t sound like a fanatic.

The point is, YAY for progress!