Dinosaur 13

December 14, 2014 — Leave a comment

SueCNN Films’ “Dinosaur 13” is a great documentary about the federal government’s seizure of Sue, the Tyrannosaurus discovered by a team of paleontologists from The Black Hills Institute. It is one of the most outrageous stories of government overreach you have heard. CNN premiered it on Thursday night and will air it again this evening, December 14, at 9 pm and 11 pm Eastern Time.

I watched it the other night, and it brought back a ton of memories for me. I lived in the Black Hills in South Dakota back when the controversy around Sue took place. I was a student at Black Hills State University then. The story of Sue was a big story in the local news for most of the 1990s there. Continue Reading…

DC 2024

December 9, 2014 — Leave a comment

Washington, DC has kicked off its bid to host the 2024 Olympics. Watch this great video, and join the effort to host the Olympic Games in our nation’s capital city!

 

shimizu

Ronin Shimizu

A couple of nights ago Ronin Shimizu passed away. He took his own life.

Ronin was a junior high-school cheerleader who was bullied because of it. In fact, the bullying situation was so bad that his parents eventually decided to home-school Ronin, since school officials weren’t able to protect him from the taunts.

My hear breaks for Ronin. I feel a tremendous amount of empathy in this situation, because Ronin’s story hits very close to home for me. I was a high-school cheerleader back in the 1980’s, and it wasn’t easy, especially back then. I wasn’t the only boy on our cheer team, like Ronin was, but I was subject to bullying because I was a male cheerleader.  Continue Reading…

Freedom From Religion

December 4, 2014

One of the things that I have fought against most of my career is the use of religion to limit others’ freedom. I’ve said many many times that radicalized Islam poses a great threat to everyone’s freedom, especially the freedom of gay people. I’ve also spoken out when Christians in Africa enact laws that make homosexuality punishable by life in prison or even death.

Of course it’s not only sexual orientation that is often times the reason for limitation on freedom because of religion. Sometimes it’s gender or even race that is cited as the reason people used religion to limit personal freedom.

I wrote earlier this year about my feelings about organized religion. Read that post here. The doctrine and orthodoxy of religion is something I reject, precisely because it’s used to limit freedom far too often.

Today, I want everyone to watch the video below. It is of Christian pastor in Arizona, Steven Anderson, calling for the execution of all gay people. That’s right. Watch it.  Continue Reading…

I just want you to know that your stint at GOProud had a huge impact on me. I went into college with a very typical mindset for a young Republican and I towed the line on SSM [same-sex marriage] because well… it seemed like what you were supposed to do. You guys completely changed that for me and for a few of my friends. I don’t know what projects you’re working on now but I want you to know that your time at GOProud was meaningful and had an impact on me. I hope all is going well Jimmy!

Message from a Young Friend (via Facebook)

Photo of the Day

November 4, 2014

It’s no secret that I am not a fan of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). I am offended that anyone thinks that they have a lifetime entitlement to the seat in the United States Senate. McConnell has been in the Senate for 30 years. In fact, he’s never had a job outside of government. He is the embodiment of the problem in Washington and he doesn’t deserve to realize his life-long dream of becoming Senate Majority Leader. Continue Reading…

Boring People and Cowards

October 29, 2014

This week, New York Times columnist David Brooks has this piece about political discrimination or “partyism.” Brooks cautions job seekers, especially conservatives, about the dangers of including political work on your resume because of partyism in hiring. He sites specific examples and studies.

He writes about one study that compared student resumes for scholarships. –

For example, political scientists Shanto Iyengar and Sean Westwood gave 1,000 people student résumés and asked them which students should get scholarships. The résumés had some racial cues (membership in African-American Students Association) and some political cues (member of Young Republicans).

Race influenced decisions. Blacks favored black students 73 percent to 27 percent, and whites favored black students slightly. But political cues were more powerful. Both Democrats and Republicans favored students who agreed with them 80 percent of the time. They favored students from their party even when other students had better credentials.

Iyengar and Westwood conducted other experiments to measure what Cass Sunstein of Harvard Law School calls “partyism.” They gave subjects implicit association tests, which measure whether people associate different qualities with positive or negative emotions. They had people play the trust game, which measures how much people are willing to trust different kinds of people.

In those situations, they found pervasive prejudice. And political biases were stronger than their racial biases.

Read the entire Brooks piece because it goes on to examine how partyism is pervasive across our culture and how it got to be that way.

I was struck by the specific point about hiring bias that Brooks made because it reminded me of this story I read a few months ago about a study examining discrimination in hiring against people with pro-LGBT activism on their resumes. The study concluded that applicants with resumes containing gay activism were 23% less likely to get interviews than less qualified applicants. Continue Reading…

I Love Dolly

October 27, 2014

I wanted to post this short Billboard interview with Dolly Parton because it shows, yet again, just what a good person she is. I’ve always loved her because she’s such a positive person who is always full of encouragement for others.

Watch this –