SDB Evening News Reads for 062111: Gay Marriage, Walmart Women and Bigfoot DNAPosted: June 21, 2011 Filed under: GLBT Rights, Marriage Equality, SCOTUS, SDB Evening News Reads | Tags: Big Foot, NY Same-Sex Marriage Vote, Walmart 11 Comments
There is a new “reality” show on Animal Planet, where cameras follow Big Foot hunters as they come out of their mother’s basements…and investigate various big foot sightings around the country.
Whenever a sound is heard in the distance, or a deer carcass is found, or a large recent urine stain is picked up with a heat seeking video…one of the guys on the show is notorious for stating, rather emphatically, “That’s a Squatch!”
This phrase has recently become a standard explanation when either my son or daughter leaves any cans of half drunk soda left out to go to waste, or a box of cookies are left on the table without closing the bag, or the toilet isn’t flushed. (This one is usually reserved for my son.) They no longer blame each other for annoying things like this, they blame Big Foot. “It was a Squatch!”
Perhaps this “Squatch” explanation should be used for any of the problems we are facing, and have faced for a long time. It sure as hell would be a better place to put the blame, don’t you think?
The media sure does not want to talk about it. (See the video clip at the end of the post.)
Over in New York, gay couples are waiting for a vote that could make the Empire State…a same-sex marriage state. NY gay marriage showdown will likely be Wednesday – Forbes.com
Legislative backroom dealing has cleared the way for a much anticipated and nationally scrutinized showdown on gay marriage in New York as early as Wednesday as closed-door talks over additional religious protections appeared to show progress.
After a marathon session Tuesday to pass deals involving taxes, state university tuition and other issues, the Republican-led Senate will be able to focus on whether to release a gay marriage bill to the floor for a vote.
There are two GOP senators that have come out in favor of passing the gay marriage bill, and allowing same-sex couples to experience the same kind of hell all us heterosexual married couples experience.
What’s Holding Up Same-Sex Marriage In New York
If gay rights activists are to thread the needle this week, they hope for a quick end to those disputes — and to a resolution over the contentious question of how many exemptions to provide for religious groups who don’t want to recognize gay unions. Those exemptions might not account for more than “about fifteen words” in the final assessment, but they could be critical.
The same-sex marriage bill as passed by the state Assembly already includes exemptions for clergy so that they don’t have to perform marriages. It also stipulates that benevolent organizations like the Knights of Columbus wouldn’t have to rent out event halls for weddings.
Those exemptions were enough for the Assembly. But in the Senate, Andrew Lanza (R-Staten Island), one of the handful of Republicans considered sway-able on the issue has declared extracting further concessions from Cuomo his “line in the sand.”
Some Republicans would like to see religious non-profits given special exemptions under the law as well.
Exactly what the several GOP senators on the fence are seeking — and what Cuomo and gay rights groups would be willing to concede — remains unclear, as discussions are taking place behind closed doors.
And who are those two GOP senators that are for passing the bill, James S Alesi and Roy J McDonald. In fact, these guys are giving some great comments about their decision to vote for same-sex marriage. Capitol Confidential » Alesi at rally: ‘I think I have some new friends’
Sen. Jim Alesi addressed a marriage equality rally in West Capitol Park with a speech that sounded at times like a conversion testament. Alesi, the first GOP senator to declare his support for same-sex marriage, called his vote — which according to alphabetical order will be the first Republican vote when/if the bill comes to the floor — “the most important thing I think I can do in my 20-year career as a legislator.”
“I’m a Republican — I was born that way,” Alesi said by way of introduction.
He said that in the week since he declared his support, he “lost what I thought were a lot of good friends, people that supported me. And when I told them … I am committed to giving people that live in America what every American wants, they told me I was no longer their friend. [Pause] I think I have some new friends.” The crowd erupted in cheers.
I think that Alesi’s stance on Gay Marriage is refreshing…and I love the way he says it…
New York Magazine has video of the speech Alesi gave here: Republican State Senator Jim Alesi: I’m Happy to Be Seen As the Symbolic Turning Vote on Marriage Equality — Daily Intel
As for McDonald, he is a bit more assertive in his dialogue. New York must pass the same-sex marriage bill | Hadley Freeman | Comment is free | The Guardian
For the past 10 days, the question of whether same-sex marriages will, at last, be legally recognised in New York has been hotly debated. The New York state assembly approved the marriage equality bill, for the fourth time, last week and it is now up to the New York Senate. Two Republican senators, James S Alesi and Roy J McDonald, said that they would vote for the bill and McDonald’s explanation behind his vote proved that he is one hell of a Republican to have on side: “Well, fuck it. I don’t care what you think. I’m trying to do the right thing. I’m tired of Republican-Democrat politics. They can take the job and shove it.”
But, as of writing, it is still undecided, and New York governor Andrew Cuomo is having to negotiate with an intractable religious-tinged right and, as President Obama learned in the first years of his presidency, that is not a group of people willing to compromise.
Ha, “Well, Fuck it!” I just think these two dudes are tops, even if they were born republicans.
On to the recent SCOTUS decision regarding Walmart v Dukes…
Wal-Mart and Trial Lawyers – Truthdig
The New York Times has a few articles that explain a couple of consequences the decision will hold for any future class action lawsuits.
A Death Blow to Class Action? – Room for Debate – NYTimes.com
In a decision with broad implications for the future of class action lawsuits, the Supreme Court ruled on Monday that Wal-Mart cannot be sued for discrimination on behalf of as many as 1.5 million current and former female workers.
The court did not rule on whether Wal-Mart had discriminated against women as individuals, only that they could not sue as a class. The justices were unanimous in finding that the plaintiffs’ lawyers had improperly sued under a part of the class action rules that was not primarily concerned with monetary claims. But they were divided 5 to 4, along ideological lines, on whether the suit met a requirement of the class action rules that “there are questions of law or fact common to the class.”
As far as back pay is concerned…the SCOTUS decision has a wide reacting effect.
Money Matters – Room for Debate – NYTimes.com
Courts have been permitting back pay for civil rights cases under the rule for almost a half century, on the grounds that this monetary relief is equitable and necessary to Title VII’s remedial scheme.Like many employees challenging systemic discrimination, the plaintiffs in this case sought back pay in addition to an injunction to stop the discriminatory policies and practices. Back pay compensates employees for earnings and other financial benefits that they would have received in the absence of discrimination. Not only is back pay an essential ingredient to making a victim of discrimination “whole,” more important, back pay encourages voluntary compliance with the law.
Congress has enacted Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, which states that “back pay, as well as injunctive and declaratory relief is critical to law enforcement.”
Back pay awards in the Title VII context tend to involve relatively uncomplicated factual determinations, comprise few individualized issues and can be often calculated on a classwide basis, therefore, this type of financial relief has been regularly allowed in class actions brought under the rule at issue in Wal-Mart v. Dukes. Even appellate courts with the toughest class certification criteria under the rule have recognized that back pay is consistent with the rule’s strictures.
This decision reverses 50 years of Title VII jurisprudence and makes it harder for employees to fight discrimination and be compensated for corporate misconduct.
That is huge, don’t you think?
Another look at the ruling is here from this article on Reality Check. Wal-Mart Gets a Free Pass For Bias From the Supreme Court | RH Reality Check
The court decided 5-4 that up to 1.5 million female employees cannot file suit together as a class. The court’s conservative majority raised questions not just about whether the women were discriminated against through the same mechanisms, but also about the validity of the plaintiffs’ central argument—that the combination of a highly centralized corporate culture and excessive discretion among managers systematically disadvantaged women.
Wal-Mart’s numbers are not in question. Women comprise more than 65 percent of hourly employees, but only 34.5 percent of managers. This is significantly different from similar retail chains, in which women hold 56.5 percent of management jobs. It takes women on average 4.38 years to rise to a management post at Wal-Mart, but takes men only 2.86 years. Of 41 Wal-Mart regional vice presidents, only five are women, and only 9.8 percent of Wal-Mart’s district managers are women. Wal-Mart’s internal documents acknowledge that they are far behind the rest of their field.
The article concludes,
Americans will be tempted to take this decision as proof that Wal-Mart is not guilty of gender discrimination, and employers will take heart from the Supreme Court turning a blind eye. If some bad managers make sexist decisions, companies will say, that can’t be helped; gender stereotyping is an intractable problem.
But the real lesson is that Americans can’t rely on the courts alone to check all forms of bias, especially the kinds that don’t require explicit direction. Wal-Mart and other corporations need to hear from everyone—consumers, workers, and other employers who are building equitable workplaces. The message we send has to go beyond following the letter of the law to challenge the social norms that keep qualified people from getting the jobs they deserve.
So back to the Big Foot thing, check it out…in California, a group of Big Foot hunters had to leave some vehicles at a campsite when an unexpected snow storm occurred. When they came back a couple days later to pick up their trucks, they found some interesting markings left on the windows…Bigfoot Investigators Hope DNA Test Will Confirm Existence Of Two Man-Beasts
California Bigfoot investigators were shocked over Memorial Day weekend when they found strange markings and hair on their pickup truck windows.
Now, they’re hoping DNA tests will prove once and for all the existence of the legendary man-beast.
“Apparently, the creature was looking in the window and left behind dirt and oil on it, leaving such an awesome picture, you can see the nose, the eye, the hair all over the face and the shoulders — it’s creepy, and it’s not a bear.”
Jeffery Gonzalez went on to say that the discovery almost made him throw up.
Gonzalez and his friends — including a former science teacher and a correctional officer — also found a 12-inch footprint at the site. They concluded their hairy intruder wasn’t a bear because none of the four ice chests that were filled with food on the back of Gonzalez’s truck had been touched.
But it wasn’t just the passenger side window that presented a surprise — the driver’s side of the truck showed the imprint of a much larger creature, strongly suggesting there were two unexplained visitors to the campsite.
“An impression was left of a nose, eyes and lips, but they were extremely large,” Gonzalez said. “The lips measured about 6 inches long. You can see that the whole face was full of hair, so when it leaned up against the window, you can see the depth of the eye socket in the glass.
Wow, 6 inch lips…that would surely make one hell of a big sloppy kiss!
And the video, from Jon Stewart below, it would be so damn funny if it wasn’t true. As I was watching this bit, I just could not laugh.
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Official Website | Current Events & Pop Culture, Comedy & Fake News
Monday June 20, 2011
The Schlong GoodbyeCNN, Fox News and MSNBC cut away from Nancy Pelosi’s news conference after she announces that there will be no Weiner talk. (04:00)
Have a good evening, and will catch ya later in the comments…
These bigfoot stories are so sad. Why do people keep trying to pull this?
Keith Olberman’s debut on Current TV beat CNN in the ratings. But take a look at the number of viewers these channels get–89,000 for CNN in primetime?! Of course they only care about people 25-54. If I watch, it doesn’t even count. LOL
Way to go Hillary!
32 corporations paid more in compensation to top executives than they paid in income taxes http://thkpr.gs/jfymRK
Hey, check it out.
Conservative Christian Group Calls on Vitter To Resign (Yes, You Read That Right) | RH Reality Check
Blown-up levee destroys black community
They would be “On Their Own”
I tried – Yu tube, Patti LaBelle & Michael McDonald “On My Own”