Postings are in chronological order, with the most recent entry at the top.
Sodomy laws? Gone-zo!
Michigan University admission policies to ensure racial diversity? Upheld!
Again, I say, "Huzzah!" What a session for the Supreme Court! I was certain they'd uphold the Texas sodomy law. I near cried when I heard they'd struck it down (I was driving so I had to maintain a modicum of emotional equilibrium). Not only was it struck down, but the majority (6-3) said that Bowers v. Hardwick, the sodomy law ruling in 1986 that so impressed itself upon my then teenaged mind's eye, was crap law! Okay, Justice Kennedy didn't say "crap law", but he may as well have (that ruling was overturned, a rare event, in a separate descision by 5-4). This means that the remaining states' sodomy laws are gone as well - all 13, nullified! The best part is, Texas tried to use the family values/morality/my bible is thicker than yours/if you let 'em do this they'll be raping their pets next argument and got nowhere.
You can't see it, but I'm still doin' a happy dance.
Congrats and thanks go out to the Lambda folks who argued the case: click here for an article on their site
Here's an article that explains why these laws are... no, excuse me... were so damaging, not just arcane blue law leftovers (used as they were in civil cases and other contexts to criminalize homosexual acts, thus depriving us of custody of children, employment, etc.): click here
Or if you're feelin' primary source oriented, you can download the ruling from the Supreme Court's site: click here and scroll down to Lawrence v. Texas, it's a .pdf document
Interesting conversation with Marijane Meaker, who wrote Highsmith: A Romance of the 1950's (she writes under a bunch of psydonyms, M. E. Kerr among them) - touches on lesbian culture and writers in the 1950's Village scene (Terry Gross, RealOne Player, 06.19.03): click here
Great conversation about exile - as in separation, difference and what you can learn from it - using Vladimir Nabokov and Zora Neal Hurston novels as talking points - Exile and Literature on The Connection with the author, Azar Nafisi (Reading Lolita in Tehran) 06.16.03: click here
If you'd like more info on Azar Nafisi, here's a link to a good interview about her experiences as a literature professor during the Iranian Revolution - good stuff (Terry Gross, RealOne Player, 04.04.03): click here
Conversation with Clare Short (former British Labor MP) on her testimony about a secret deal made between the US and Britain to go to war as early as Sept. 2002 (regardless of weapons inspections) on a predetermined date in the spring: click here
Second weekend in June? Pride Day in Boston! Yee haw!
I arrived late to the Pride March/Parade this year - dagnabbit! I scooted into the crowd just in time to see some cheerful Transgendered folk pass by.
Had P.T. Barnum been born in the latter half of the twentieth century, me thinks he'd be the director of the Guggenheim Museum. "Why speak you thus, Brulee?" I'm thusly speaking because I recently entertained the bit of my brain that, try as I might, I cannot repress. It's a small area, spongy in texture and prone to make wet sucking noises when ignored for extended periods of time. The sucking noise had reached a vexatious pitch and, masochist that I am, I gave into it's sopping demand - I attended the screening of... (dare I say it?) an art film. I generally put art films in the same category (fairly or no) that I put short films and short student films in particular, which is the "déjà vu'd one, déjà vu'd 'em all and why oh why are you dragging me back to another one you sucking nuisance in the back of my head?"
Which isn't to say that I'm not in awe of les artistes du cinema or anyone else who's able to produce an original creation. It's just to say that when I'm looking at something, a screen, say, for an extended period of time, and I find myself looking for the subtitles and there aren't any and I have to remind myself that it's much like the rest of my life where I often find myself looking for subtitles and there aren't any and for some reason which is beyond me - when I sat down and started looking at the screen I'd suffered under the apprehension that perhaps... the screen might act as the subtitle for some aspect of my experience, but it turns out to be the subtitle for someone else's experience and they forgot to tell me before the lights went down.
And so the lights come back up and I wander back to where I came from, hoping all the while that maybe if I squint some more I'll be able to make out the subtitles and of course, I can't, but at least the sucking noise in the back of my head has quieted down... for a while.
You too can take a look at several stills from this filum artistique, it's a series of five - aw c'mon, just look for the hell of it - the photos are well done. The series was part of an extravaganza turbo-artsy on show at the Gugenheim in NYC: click here
This is one of the popular images from the series - evocative, true, but so are the shapes that clouds make, no?: click here
The show was explored in an NPR piece: Matthew Barney's Guggenheim Show Ignites Controversy - click here
Ooh, lookie - Planet Out has a Dan Savage column! I bet the second letter is going to generate some e-mail... click here
Time for play! I enjoyed these games on funky man Maeda's site: Game 2 and 4 were my favorites: click here for 2 and here for 4 and enjoy exploring the rest of his site! He's well known for his java calendars: click here and be sure to click and play with them - interaction makes 'em go - there is beauty in simplicity, no?
I spotted a pack of playing cards on a friend's desk the other day. The packaging had a camouflage pattern... "Let me guess which deck of cards you've got there," I said. It was the military's deck of most wanted Iraqis - he bought them on the internet. Nothing like a little war profiteering, eh? Which is why I find the deck of cards over at WarProfiteers.com so much more enlightening - not to mention downright awesome: click here
For anyone who doesn't remember George Schultz (the King of diamonds in the WarProfiteers deck) from his stellar moments in the Reagan administration, you can catch up on his and Bechtel's exploits by reading this sweet little article (don't read this on a full stomach): click here
The enlightening war profiteer deck was produced by The Ruckus Society - they appear to be an anarchist outfit. The only anarchist I ever met (and knew about...) was a fellow college student back in the eightees. We went head to head in a couple of debates in class and I couldn't understand what informed his point of view. It seemed frivilous, peevish even (I have no idea if this is common to the animal or specific to him). And besides that, I didn't think anarchists were supposed to announce themselves willy-nilly (I'd just read some Zola and that was the impression he left me with). One day after class I saw this student get into his car and I thought - ah, perhaps here is a clue - it was a sparkly Mercedes - a 19 year old driving a Mercedes... "They don't do too poorly for themselves, these anarchists, pehaps I ought to rethink my philosophy," said me: click here to explore the Ruckus Society
And while I'm on the topic of beastly irritants to the powers that be... here's a link from the queer camp: strap-on.org
And then, of course, there's sex advice for insects from Dr. Tatiana... No, really! click here
And if you're feeling especially frisky, you can dig into this fascinating policy article by George Soros, America's Global Role: Why the fight for a worldwide open society begins at home: click here
Hurrah! And whatnot.
You know how everybody wants to know where the weapons of mass destruction are hiding out? Well, I want to know too - so, here's an idea: why don't they ask Saddam? I bet he knows. Oh, right! They can't find him either!
Hurry up on the peace effort in the Middle East Monsieur Bush - that's your best chance of making this little problem go away... or at least cause people to do that ends justifying the means math and decide it's not worth the trouble of picking at the wmd scab. I wouldn't be displeased if M. Bush accomplished something positive in the peace effort - that would be a good thing indeed.
In the meantime... is it possible that people are on the verge of realising that our country has been hijacked by a bunch of extremists who've manipulated the palpable fear of terrorism into an unprovoked war and severe restrictions on civil liberties? I'm not holding my breath in that expectation, but I'm following the discussion with interest.
Here's a fascinating conversation called "Where are the Weapons?" from NewsHour. You get to watch the ever hawkish neocon Richard Perle get articulately rebuffed - you GO David Albright and Judith Yaphe! We've got cracks here people, wee little cracks...
But Mr. ex-CIA man, James Schlesinger, says,
They call it focusing on WMD, but it sounds curiously like something my parents used to call lying. Lies of ommission being kind of, well, not especially nice. But hell, all's fair in love and war and well, if you know there's no way in hell you're going to get your populace to back a war by being honest, you may as well lie, right? And now they're as much as admitting it in that supra-pragmatic, "We all really knew this was the case all along." kind of way. And attempting to make their case ass-backwards.
Shock! Surprise! The industry-owned officials of the FCC panel voted to deregulate the media ownership rules some more. We lose! But it ain't over yet! This is an issue that may grow legs - if people keep interested and active. Avast ye!
I've just got to get a sword and a patch for my eye, so that when I act like a pirate, people will take me seriously.
In the meantime - you can surf up a nifty little report on the topic - surf to the page and scroll down to "Media Lobbyists Turn Efforts to Congress" (06.06.03 RealOne player): click here
If you're up late and want to scare yourself but good, you can click on this raising the hairs at the back of your neck big brother kinda tech-software in development story - LifeLog - muy creepy! click here
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