I had a lovely draft on my iPad, and WordPress doesn’t want to cooperate, so I’m looking at the notes I have on one device and hoping I can get the full ideas over onto my laptop and then the net. (This is an excellent defense of Neil Gaiman’s habit of writing things down in longhand on paper with ink. And a reinforcement of my need to do the same, even if I am not writing with a fountain pen. Just write.)
That all being said, holy shit, lots going on this week!
Edward Snowden. Damn, if this isn’t a “let it go, man, cause he’s gone” situation, I’m not sure what is. Ecuador is offering to pay $23M for human rights training in the US and giving up preferred trading status over the Snowden affair. We’re not necessarily BFF’s with Iceland as it is either – it’s OK, but not undying love – considering that they kicked out our FBI agents because they lied about their reasons for entering the country, they might be more inclined to grant him asylum as well. Between Hong Kong “letting him go” and Moscow keeping him in the transit areas, I do believe this might be the rest of the world saying, “We’re a wee bit sick of your shit right now.”
To be perfectly honest, and at the risk of adding another page to my FBI file: I suspect were at a point – not necessarily permanent by any means, but a reality for the present – that the rest of the world is getting a little tired of dealing with our shit. (As I said above.) And I can’t say that I don’t understand – I do – honestly, we don’t run the world and other countries are getting tired of us acting like that is our job.
He’s gone. Let it go and do the best you can to minimize the damage. He’s not going to set foot on US soil anytime soon.
The Voting Rights Act coming up in front of SCOTUS. Oof, yeah, that’s the best I could come up with. I’ll be honest, I still don’t quite understand how they struck it down, mainly because I identified more with the dissent rather than the majority ruling on this one. All I can say right now is, if you actually give a shit about every eligible voter being able to vote regardless of race, creed, color, political affiliation, choice of automobile, presence at farmer’s markets, pet ownership, favorite vacation spot, or preferred watering hole – then you need to contact your local voting rights organization and ask, “How Can I Help??!?“*
Oh, dear lord, Texas. (I don’t have links, cause it’s late and I’m tired – but google it, you’ll find them.) Senator Wendy Davis fighting SB5. Senator Leticia Van de Putte bringing forth the parliamentary objections to continue her fight – just to stand up against men who will absolutely NEVER, EVER face the situation of being pregnant and trying to figure out how to proceed. And Governor Perry chose to use this as a platform to say that, “[Wendy Davis] hasn’t learned from her own example” . – the same guy who vetoed the equal pay bill two weeks ago. Oh, and to top off this super duper pro-life sundae? Texas just oversaw it’s 500th execution. It’s an excellent example of prizing a pulse over a person. Seriously – Texas is not a great place to be a kid.
I’ll be perfectly honest, I don’t even know where to start on the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin trial. Starting off the defense with a knock-knock joke? Because a dead teen is so funny? Going after a teenaged prosecution witness? (Who wasn’t top notch day 1, but realized on day 2 that she needed to be as aggressive as the lawyer Well done.) Just a big fucking mess all around, but if nothing else, will hopefully require the state to be a bit more nuanced on the Stand Your Ground laws.
Paula Deen. Hey, honey, free speech means that you are also subject to consequences. Not from the government, but by others. For everyone bitching about her abridgment of free speech – the government had no part of that. Private companies can toss you to the curb for any reason. Her failing ratings and employment lawsuit didn’t h elp in this manner. If the Angry White People Tumblr is any indication, my local Target and WalMart will be blissfully empty every time I walk in.
The SERIOUSLY AWESOME BRIGHT SPOT TO THE WEEK??!? DOMA IS DEAD!! This means so much to me on so many levels. And really, after everything else, it really was the saving grace to the week. While this doesn’t legalize same sex marriage, it sure as hell opens the barn doors to some hard core litigation in states like Virginia to recognize it. It was one thing to be DC married, but not Virginia married – but how can you be Federally married and not State married? Also, this brings forth so many federal rights and benefits to same sex married couples, which is also so very important. Yes, it will take a little bit of time to look at all the regs and make sure they are being applied consistently – but it is no longer an “if” but a “when” and a “when” that has legal backing.
The only sad thing for me on this is that I really wish my Mom was still among us to see it. She worked for the government, and was incredibly pissed off when DOMA passed in the first place. She had gay coworkers and hated the idea that they couldn’t be just as married as she had been to my father. Wherever she may be now, I hope someone has passed her a sticky note with the news, and that she has the smile on her face that I suspect she would have.
Again, what a week. I thought summer was supposed to be the slow news time? Really, I should be combing through the laundry to find all my shorts and t-shirts for the beach right now.
* ACLU, League of Women Voters, NAACP, contact any of these three organizations and they will let you know how to help on a local level.