Evening News Reads: Early EditionPosted: April 2, 2012
Good Early Evening!
There is something completely wrong in this country…when a deer can get birth control and women can’t!
Avon Lake Councilwoman Jennifer Fenderbosch has been in communication with Tufts University and the Medical College of Ohio, who are studying the effects of PZP, a non-hormonal birth control dart for wild animals.
“The universities are interested in investigating the possibility of a long term birth control study of the white tailed deer in Avon Lake,” Fenderbosch said in a press release. “Dr. Turner has tentatively agreed to tour Avon Lake in late April or May to determine if the geography of Avon Lake fits the test protocol.”
Fenderbosch has taken the lead in the city on addressing an overpopulation of deer problem. Recently, the city began reviewing the possibility of amending Avon Lake’s ordinances to expand bow hunting in city limits to cull the herd, estimated by a spotlight count at 250.
PZP is similar to an allergy shot. It is made with a pig protein that is injected into the hip muscle of a white tailed deer with a retrievable dart. The deer’s immunity system responds by thickening and changing the shape of the membrane that surrounds the egg prohibiting sperm from penetrating; thus, preventing conception.
This is unbelievable…and I am not commenting on the actual issue of deer population…I am commenting on the fact that women are being treated with less regard than livestock.
Which leads me to this awesome interview with Hillary Clinton: msnbc video: Clinton: Where women are marginalized, ‘rights are denied’
Please watch/listen to it if you have not seen it yet.
Dakinikat wrote about the election of Aung San Suu Kyi yesterday, here is a follow up report on this from WaPo: Burmese government says it was surprised by scale of Suu Kyi victory – The Washington Post
The Burmese government was surprised by the scale of arch-rival Aung San Suu Kyi’s election win in parliamentary elections, the president’s chief adviser acknowledged Monday, one day after the democracy advocate’s party apparently secured a landslide victory.
Suu Kyi’s party said it had won 43 of a total 45 contested seats in the landmark election. The results, said reformist President Thein Sein’s chief adviser, proved that this Southeast Asian nation is capable of holding fair elections and that it is time for the U.S. government to lift sanctions on Burma.
“I think the Obama government, they are starting to believe that we are really changing, but we need to convince the other guys in Congress,” said the adviser, Ko Ko Hlaing, in an interview at a government office in Rangoon.
Washington has hinted at plans to soften or even remove investment, trade and financial sanctions against the Burmese government should it show progress toward meaningful democratic reform. Sunday’s poll, the first involving Suu Kyi after 22 years, was closely scrutinized by U.S. officials.
“This election is an important step in Burma’s democratic transformation, and we hope it is an indication that the Government of Burma intends to continue along the path of greater openness, transparency, and reform,” the White House said in a statement.
I love what Suu Kyi said at the news of her victory:
Striking a conciliatory tone on Monday, Suu Kyi told a small crowd of supporters outside her National League for Democracy headquarters in Rangoon that Sunday’s election had been a triumph, not only for her party but for ordinary voters.
“We hope that this will be the beginning of a new era, when there will be more emphasis on the role of the people in the everyday politics in our country,” she said.
Geez, I wish that we had more emphasis on people in our own political battlefield…which is exactly what our parties have become, a battlefield of special interest and no real representation of the people.
Coming back to the topic of US News:
The Supreme Court on Monday ruled by a 5-to-4 vote that officials may strip-search people arrested for any offense, however minor, before admitting them to jails even if the officials have no reason to suspect the presence of contraband.
Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, joined by the court’s conservative wing, wrote that courts are in no position to second-guess the judgments of correctional officials who must consider not only the possibility of smuggled weapons and drugs but also public health and information about gang affiliations.
About 13 million people are admitted each year to the nation’s jails, Justice Kennedy wrote.
Under Monday’s ruling, he wrote, “every detainee who will be admitted to the general population may be required to undergo a close visual inspection while undressed.”
Justice Stephen G. Breyer, writing for the four dissenters, said strip-searches were “a serious affront to human dignity and to individual privacy” and should be used only when there was good reason to do so.
Ruled 5 to 4 is becoming synonymous with this Supreme Court, which really makes a strong statement about our Justice System’s ideological views of the Constitution doesn’t it?
I am sticking with the SCOTUS for a bit longer, this time from Jeffrey Toobin:
It’s well known by now that Donald Verrilli, Jr., the Solicitor General, had an off day at the Supreme Court last Tuesday, when he was called on to defend the constitutionality of the individual mandate, the part of the Affordable Care Act which requires people to buy health insurance. Still, it’s worth noting the magnitude of the challenge that he was facing. The key issue in the case is whether Congress, in passing the law, exceeded its powers under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution, which allows the government to regulate interstate commerce. Consider, then, this question, posed to Verrilli by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy: “Assume for the moment that this”—the mandate—“is unprecedented, this is a step beyond what our cases have allowed, the affirmative duty to act to go into commerce. If that is so, do you not have a heavy burden of justification?” Every premise of that question was a misperception. The involvement of the federal government in the health-care market is not unprecedented; it dates back nearly fifty years, to the passage of Medicare and Medicaid. The forty million uninsured Americans whose chances for coverage are riding on the outcome of the case are already entered “into commerce,” because others are likely to pay their health-care costs.
Kennedy’s last point, about the “heavy burden” on the government to defend the law, was correct—in 1935. That was when the Supreme Court, in deciding Schechter Poultry Corp. v. United States—a case involving the regulation of the sale of sick chickens—struck down the National Industrial Recovery Act, a principal domestic priority of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, on the ground that it violated the Commerce Clause. Two years later, however, the Court executed its famous “switch in time that saved the Nine” and began upholding the reforms of the New Deal. The Justices came to recognize that national economic problems require national solutions, and they deferred to Congress, usually unanimously, to provide those solutions, under the Commerce Clause.
For example, the Justices had no trouble upholding the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which used the clause to mandate the integration of hotels and restaurants. “It may be argued that Congress could have pursued other methods to eliminate the obstructions it found in interstate commerce caused by racial discrimination,” Justice Tom C. Clark wrote, for his unanimous brethren. “But this is a matter of policy that rests entirely with the Congress, not with the courts. How obstructions in commerce may be removed—what means are to be employed—is within the sound and exclusive discretion of the Congress.” In other words, Justice Kennedy had it backward. The “heavy burden” is not on the defenders of the law but on its challengers. Acts of Congress, like the health-care law, are presumed to be constitutional, and it is—or should be—a grave and unusual step for unelected, unaccountable, life-tenured judges to overrule the work of the democratically elected branches of government.
Read the rest of the commentary at that link above.
This next link is to another commentary, this time on the question of Why Don’t Black People Protest ‘Black-on-Black Violence’? – Ta-Nehisi Coates – National – The Atlantic I urge you to look at the various articles Coates cites in his article…but this is the key point of the post.
I came up in the era of Self-Destruction. I wrote a book largely about violence in black communities. The majority of my public experiences today are about addressing violence in black communities. I can not tell you how scared black parents are for their kids, and whatever modest success of my book experienced, most of it hinged on the great worry that black mothers feel for their sons.There is a kind of sincere black person who really would like to see even more outrage about violence in black communities. I don’t think outrage will do it at this point, but I respect the sincere feeling.And then there are pundits who write more than they read, and talk more than they listen, and prefer an easy creationism to a Google search.
There is a bit of excitement on the genealogy front: Genealogists, fire up your computer: The 1940 census is online – latimes.com
For those who are fascinated by time capsules and family trees, a new treasure trove opened up online for the first time Monday when the National Archives released the 1940 census.
After 72 years hidden by a legal cloak of confidentiality, 3.8 million digital images of what Census enumerators found in 1940 became available to anyone with a computer.
The National Archives, a federal government agency, partnered with Archives.com, a family history website owned and operated by Inflection, a Silicon Valley company, to create to the 1940 census website. Previous data dumps were on microfilm.
But the importance of the release goes beyond just its greater public availability.
About 21 million people who were alive in 1940 are still alive today–a testament to the power of new drugs, new medical techniques and improved water and sanitation. (In 1940, about 45% of all Americans lived in a home that lacked complete plumbing facilities, compared to 2% in 2010, census figures show). Despite that longevity, 1940 remains terra incognita to most of the country.
For the United States, 1940 was the last catch of breath between the decade of the Great Depression and the nation’s resurgence brought about by World War II, already underway in Europe and Asia.
This last article from New York times is fantastic. I really like Peter Dinklage’s work, and it was an enjoyable interview to read: Peter Dinklage Was Smart to Say No – NYTimes.com
In many ways, Dinklage’s own story is unsurprising: an actor who flailed for years, worked steadily for some more years, then got a great role and became famous. The part of Tyrion Lannister has now won Dinklage that Globe, an Emmy and an army of new fans who never saw him in “Living in Oblivion,” onstage in “Richard III” or even in his breakout film, “The Station Agent,” in 2003.
Yet Dinklage’s sudden stardom offers a pleasurable meritocratic twist to his career, given that the entertainment industry doesn’t typically reward those who turn down roles on principle, much less actors who don’t meet a certain physical ideal. Sure, James Gandolfini struggled before “The Sopranos” made him an unlikely leading man. But James Gandolfini didn’t eat potato chips for dinner every night because he conscientiously objected to playing one of Santa’s elves in Kmart ads.
Dinklage recently moved away from New York, the city he called home for most of the past 20 years — first in Williamsburg and then in the West Village. The city was making him feel older than his 42 years. “Just all the clawing for space,” he said. “I felt myself becoming a bitter old man in New York, and I wanted to avoid that.”
This is my last post for a while. Many know that I am getting a total hysterectomy, and my surgery on Wednesday will hopefully make my life a better one.
See you all sometime next week…the doctor says I will be in bad shape for about two weeks and then start to feel better. All I know is that this surgery is something I’ve needed since 2007, being without health insurance is a nightmare…but in my situation, it feels good to have some relief from my health problems…and I just can’t wait to be free from the curses of womanhood.