Lundi Gras ReadsPosted: February 8, 2016 Filed under: 2016 elections, Afternoon Reads | Tags: Beyonce, Black Lives Matter, Cam Newton, lundi gras, Marco Rubio, Proteus, Superbowl 34 Comments
So, we’re headed into Mardi Gras 2016 down here in New Orleans. Some big football game in some other city just wrapped up the season. New Hampshire has its first in the country presidential primary tomorrow and somewhere out there Marco Rubio is having a terrible very bad day! Yasssssss!!! Oh, and Happy Year of the Male Fire Monkey!!! Tashi Losar! This is a very eventful lunar period in many ways.
Lundi Gras is the traditional resting day for us before the big day. My plans include making groceries at Rouse’s and picking up dog food at Bark Market. The Kings of Rex and Zulu will appear today. Today there is one parade. It’s the Krewe of Proteus which was founded in 1882. Their floats are quite historical as they use the original chassis and keep many of their traditional designs.
The Krewe of Proteus parade is based on Egyptian mythology. Proteus was the son of Poseidon, herded Poseidon’s seals, the great bull seal at the center of the harem. He can tell the future, change his shape and will only answer to someone who can capture him.
The images today are historical drawings of old floats and costumes from Proteus.
Here’s some more information on Proteus from the NOLA History Guy. One of the things he mentions is the Ordinance passed by the City Council to get Krewes to be more racially diverse. The New Orleans Celebration does have some really deep roots in racism as well as class.
The Council’s unanimous vote came after leaders of six prominent, mostly white parade clubs had pledged to begin trying to integrate “racially and ethnically” by 1993.
Despite objections from civil rights advocates, the Council followed the recommendation of a committee appointed by Mayor Sidney Barthelemy to study the issue. The committee began its deliberations during the furor that arose after the law was proposed last fall by Councilwoman Dorothy Mae Taylor, who is black.
As passed by the Council in December, the ordinance, which takes effect in 1994, would have denied parade and liquor permits to any Carnival clubs, called krewes, that had membership barriers based on “race, creed, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex or sexual orientation, age, physical condition or disability.”
Krewes would have had the burden of proving they did not discriminate, and leaders of clubs found to be in violation would have been subject to a $300 fine and up to five months in jail. Watered Down Twice
In February, the Council deleted the jail-sentence provision and removed the burden of proof from the clubs, placing it instead on their accusers.
On Thursday the Council allowed krewes to remain all-male or all-female and softened enforcement of the law. The city now must dismiss any discrimination complaint against a krewe if the club submits an affidavit pledging that it does not discriminate. Change Called ‘Absurd’
If you’d like to read more on this, I suggest Jame’s Gills’ Book Lords of Misrule: Mardi Gras and the Politics of Race in New Orleans. I read it last year and it was quite enlightening.
I’ve been thinking about these things because of Beyonce and the release of her new video Formation which is fierce by any standard. She’s gone full throttle social justice advocate for women, girls, and African Americans. It’s got slaps at the response to Katrina and a major nod to BLM. It openly celebrates female sexuality too. She sang at that football game whose name I just can’t quite recall. Responses to both video and performance include a plethora of items that show our country just cannot get beyond the racial divide. Panther’s quarterback Cam Newton and Beyonce have both been the subject of some rather nasty Twitters and such.
Members of the National Sheriffs’ Association meeting in Washington turned their backs on Beyonce during a Super Bowl halftime party, angered the NFL allowed her to sing a song they consider anti-police.
The Association told Secrets that when Beyonce performed a snippet of her hit “Formation,” the sheriffs holding their annual legislative meeting at the J.W. Marriott turned off the volume and video.
The video is marvelously controversial and includes scenes of New Orleans and the wonderful voice of our own Queen Diva Big Freedia. You can believe the internet is alive with chatter.
Dee: Beyoncé has been accused of not caring enough about Black Lives Matter and of being a bad feminist (or not one at all); on “Formation,” she raises two middle fingers to all sides of her Illuminati-truthing haters with a bold intersection of the two fights. She is a black feminist, full stop. This is a video made for women — she speaks directly to “ladies” in the song’s blazing call to action — and it is clear she is done living for the will and want of men (and has been for a minute, actually). She’s “so possessive” of Jay Z’s love and his power that she wears his “Roc necklaces.” (Still, Hov’s got the hottest chick in the game wearing his chain.) She won’t stand by and watch young black women snatch their noses so far that they can no longer take pride in their Jackson 5 nostrils.
This is a new negro spiritual hymn, one that hits me deeper than Kendrick’s “Alright,” because every look, every lyric, every outfit, every moment is a statement of Black Girl Magic. Of course, I’m moved by that fly little black boy in a hoodie who joyfully dances in front of a barricade of white cops in riot gear. But I’m politically inspired when Beyoncé gives the Black Power salute atop a New Orleans cop car. Am I reaching to call this a protest song? I just can’t get “Mississippi Goddam” out of my head when I see it.
Then, there’s the Cam “controversy”. I admit to seeing none of it but being caught in the Twitterstorm that followed.
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton showed his personality all season with his dabbin’ and dancing.
Many loved him for it.
Some criticized him for it.
The 2015 league MVP showed his personality again after Sunday night’s 24-10 loss to Denver in Super Bowl 50 with short answers and an abrupt exit from his postgame news conference.
It wasn’t pretty. The player known for his infectious smile and designer attire answered seven questions with a frown and black hoodie pulled over his head.
It’ll get Newton more criticism than love.
But it was raw emotion just like his dabbin’.
Newton hates to lose, and he wears that emotion on his sleeve as boldly as he wore those Versace zebra-print pants on the trip to California.
Continue reading that article and you’ll see that Cam’s labelled as having “childlike behavior”. Now the best I can be is a white ally but that description is not what I’d imagine one should say about a grown black man who even thought he makes that much money basically tossing balls around in a game. With so much shit coming down in the world and this country, you would think that folks could be more upset by the level of child poverty in the country, the poisoning of children in a poor community by a state government, or say sending drone attacks down on a village. But, no, we get all excited about a game and some artistic expression. And, it variably turns into a white denial of institutional racism on parade.
Or, you could be like me and be genuinely upset by assholes running to be the leader of the Free World like the aforementioned Marco Rubio. I really hope the man has a horrid week because THIS. I want his goose cooked until its cinder.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) promised on Sunday that he would sign an abortion ban as president that provided exceptions for rape even though he preferred for pregnant victims to have their rapists’ babies.
Following a Saturday night’s Republican Presidential Debate on ABC News, host George Stephanopoulos noted during a Sunday interview that Rubio had been hammered for his belief that abortion was wrong even in cases of rape or incest.
“Abortion to me is not a political issue,” Rubio insisted. “It’s a human rights issue. And so, if [Jeb Bush] wants to make it a political issue, that’s his right. For me, it’s not.”
“I do require an exception for life of the mother because I’m pro-life,” he continued. “Number two, as I’ve said, if they pass a law in Congress that has exceptions, I’ll sign it. Because I want to save lives.”
“What do you say to that mom when you look her in the eye?” the ABC host wondered.
“It’s a terrible situation,” Rubio replied. “I mean, a crisis pregnancy, especially as a result of something as horrifying as that, I’m not telling you it’s easy. I’m not here saying it’s an easy choice. It’s a horrifying thing that you’ve just described.”
“I get it,” he added. “I really do. And that’s why this issue is so difficult. But I believe a human being, an unborn child has a right to live, irrespective of the circumstances of which they were conceived. And I know that the majority of Americans don’t agree with me on that.”
“And that’s why any law that passed will almost certainly have exceptions. And I’ll sign it.”
That’s right neighborly of him.
Those of you that actually watched the debate with us on Saturday night know that Chris Christie went after Rubio with a relish and Rubio folded like an empty sack of flour. We’ve frequently talked about Rubio’s penchant for sounding like he’s speaking from memorized 3×5 index cards. You know, the kind that they used in high school bates backed in the day. Christie nailed him on it and all Rubio did was repeat the same thing over about 4 times. The polls have taken a turn. Rubio is no longer the flavor of the month and the Twitter and Gifs have not been kind either.
An internal poll conducted on Sunday suggests that Marco Rubio’s fumbled debate performance has damaged his prospects heading into the New Hampshire primary.
The poll, conducted by the pro-John Kasich New Day for America Super PAC, shows Rubio plummeting to fourth place in the primary here, with 10 percent of the vote. Most of the polling conducted in the immediate days before the debate showed Rubio in second place.
The survey, which was based on phone calls to 500 likely voters (margin of error plus or minus 3 percent), was conducted Sunday, the day following the latest Republican debate. Rubio came under scathing attack from Chris Christie, who cast the first term Florida senator as too unready, ambitious, and superficial to occupy the Oval Office.
Donald Trump holds a wide lead in the survey, receiving 35 percent. He more than doubles runner-up Kasich, who has 15 percent. In third is Jeb Bush, with 13 percent. Behind Rubio in fifth and sixth place, respectively, are Christie and Ted Cruz. Both receive 8 percent.
The results are welcome news for Kasich and Bush, both of whom have made New Hampshire the centerpiece of the primary campaigns. Strong performances on Tuesday will give them reason to fight on to the South Carolina primary, which will be held Feb. 20.
So, what’s more important in the scheme of things? A football game, a video, the potential return of another Bush? Oh, and of course, Rubio’s a Republican so it’s the media’s fault for emphasizing that he repeated the same damned thing about Obama 4 times.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) sent a fundraising email Monday that passed off New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) attacks on the freshman senator’s canned talking points as a controversy ginned up by the media.
The email said the media pounced on the Rubio campaign’s “building momentum” by making hay out of the fact that the senator “pointed out a few times” during Saturday’s Republican presidential debate “that President Obama has been very deliberate about achieving his bad policies.”
“This isn’t the first time the media has tried to distract people,” the email read. “We can’t afford to let the media get away with this.”
Rubio had said some variation of the line, “Barack Obama is undertaking an effort to change this country, to make America more like the rest of the world,” four times during the debate. Christie repeatedly attacked Rubio’s repetition on the stage, calling the Obama line the senator’s “memorized 25-second speech.”
In the fundraising email, which didn’t mention Christie, Rubio said he would stick with the language.
Good luck with that.
If I wanted to give you all a headache, I’d start in on how horrible MoDo was this weekend. But, BNR has done it for me so I’ll leave it at that.
Dowd is the leading purveyor of Rovian anti-Hillary memes, sophisticated negative character frames crafted in conservative oppo shops to undermine Hillary’s candidacy. Dowd believes that as a woman, she is immune from claims of sexism, so her Hillary-bashing screeds are bursting at the seams with blatantly sexist language, lies and innuendo.
Her latest column includes the following verbatim phrases:
- Hillary still has not learned the art of seduction on stage
- Overplays her feminist hand
- Feels too competitive with her husband
- Bill could tell her not to shout her way through rallies, adding to her authenticity problem
- Her campaign cries sexism too often
- Hillary huffily said…
- And she’s still not likable enough for the young women who were supposed to carry her forward as a Joan of Arc.
- With Hillary, there are three things [that make her stupid]: sex, money and the need for secrecy.
- Nixonian obsession with secrecy by the woman who was once an idealistic lawyer
- Hillary was there sucking at the teat
- She tried to drag in others to excuse her own ethically lax behavior
Dowd’s hate masquerading as an editorial is nothing new. She’s been doing this for two decades. But she got sloppy this time, slipping in a line accusing America’s first African American president of “using race” to get elected:
Then there’s the pile on the Big Dawg for a few things he said in a speech and what Madeline Albright said in a speech and what Gloria Steinem said in a speech. Yes, BernieBros, the Clintons control the media narrative. You can sure tell it by the nasty ass coverage of all this including the ginning up of your basic catfight.
Nearly defeated in Iowa, trailing in New Hampshire, and worried about everywhere else,Hillary Clinton’s campaign is bringing out the big guns, releasing political kraken Bill Clinton and summoning feminist icons Gloria Steinem and Madeleine Albright to reclaim young female voters who have flocked to Bernie Sanders.
In a sign that the formerly inevitable nominee is growing anxious, Bill went all-out against Sanders during a speech Sunday in New Hampshire that sparingly mentioned the Vermont senator by name, but implied that he was a hypocrite whose ideals were untethered to reality. “When you’re making a revolution, you can’t be too careful with the facts,” he sniped, according to The New York Times. But Bill didn’t stop there, accusing the Sanders campaign of fomenting the alleged “Bernie Bro” phenomenon, described by Politicoas a group “who harass female Clinton supporters online and accuse them of ‘voting with their vagina’ and call them ‘bitches.’” Condemning what he called “vicious trolling,” Bill said the attacks on his wife are “literally too profane … not to mention sexist.” (Sanders has denounced any sexism among the ranks of his supporters, saying misogyny has no place in his campaign.)
But Bill was not alone in his unusually harsh words for Sanders and his supporters. The Clinton campaign also tapped Steinem and Albright, two prominent, glass-ceiling-shattering women, to join in chastising young female voters for not supporting one of their own. “We can tell our story of how we climbed the ladder, and a lot of you younger women think it’s done,” Albright said Saturday during a Hillary event, according to The New York Times. “It’s not done. There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other!” Steinem, never one to mince words, suggested Friday on Real Time with Bill Maher that young women are supporting Sanders’s campaign because “the boys are with Bernie.” Steinem and Albright both received significant backlash for their comments, with the Times reporting that some young women were insulted by the suggestion that they were “misinformed and stupid” for not voting along gendered lines.
The series of seemingly coordinated moves underscores how much Clinton, who made women’s rights a core mission during her time as secretary of state, has stumbled with female voters. Recent polls suggestthat women under 35 overwhelmingly prefer Sanders by a 20-point margin, citing their disapproval of Clinton’s Wall Street ties and her less progressive positions on economic problems like student debt and a weak job market for entry-level positions. Hillary hasn’t recovered well from these attacks, recently refusing to release transcripts of her speeches to large banks and organizations—for which she received compensation well into the six figures—unless everyone else “who’s ever given a speech to any private group under any circumstances” does so as well.
Since this is getting long, I’m going to let you add the links to the criticism for all that if you want along with your thoughts. Or, we can talk about what kind of challenges we have in this country and who is the best to deal with them.
Meanwhile, did you know there’s a video with a black woman suggesting that the police should stop killing unarmed black people and that a black quarterback with his own kind’ve style upset reporters by leaving a presser early?
What’s on your reading and blogging list today?
Open Thread: Republicans don’t *have* to be Mean-Spirited like Karl RovePosted: February 6, 2012 Filed under: open thread, Republican politics, the GOP, U.S. Politics | Tags: auto bailout, Chrysler, Clint Eastwood, Karl Rove, Superbowl 15 Comments
I admit I didn’t watch a single Superbowl ad. I didn’t watch the halftime show either. I just can’t stand to. I did hear that there was an ad with Clint Eastwood in it, and I decided to watch it after I heard that Karl Rove was “offended” by it. From Raw Story:
Fox News host Jon Scott on Monday told Rove that Democrats were celebrating the ad as evidence of the effectiveness of President Barack Obama’s bold decision to bailout the auto companies instead of letting them go under.
“This is a sign of what happens when you have government getting in bed with big business like the bailout of the auto companies,” Rove complained. “The leadership of the auto companies feel they need to do something to repay their political patrons.”
“I was, frankly, offended by it,” he added. “I’m a huge fan of Clint Eastwood. I thought it was an extremely well-done ad, but it is a sign of what happens when you have Chicago-style politics. And the president of the United States and his political minions are, in essence, using our tax dollars to buy corporate advertising.”
As the article points out, Rove’s old boss Dubya provided General Motors with $17.4 billion in government loans before Obama was President. Was he offended by that?
We’ve actually reached the point where Republicans are “offended” by improvement in the U.S. economy and are doing everything in their power to bring it down again. As for Clint Eastwood, who is a registered Republican, I thank him for not only doing the ad but also for standing up for LGBT rights.
Sunday Reads: Occupy Superbowl, Alveda King throws women under bus, and the big homelessPosted: January 29, 2012 Filed under: #Occupy and We are the 99 percent!, abortion rights, children, Foreign Affairs, Homeless, immigration, indefinite detention, Iran, Labor unions, morning reads, Nigeria, PLUB Pro-Life-Until-Birth, religious extremists, Reproductive Health, Reproductive Rights, Right to Work, science, Syria, U.S. Politics, Women's Rights | Tags: Boko Haram, Dubstep, Jorge Posada, Legonaut, Mitch Daniels, Superbowl 44 Comments
It is Sunday Morning…
All day yesterday, I kept thinking it was a Friday. It is strange how days have a certain “feel” about them… If you missed any of yesterday’s posts, Wonk the Vote, PeggySue, Dakinikat and BostonBoomer had some excellent ones, take a look.
I have a lot of links for you this morning, so we’ll just dive in.
First off, the Occupy movement got hit hard yesterday evening. More than 100 Occupy activists arrested in Oakland after clashing with police
Occupy activists tossed pipes, bottles, burning flares and other objects Saturday at Oakland police, who responded by using tear gas and smoke grenades and arresting more than 100 demonstrators, city and police officials said.
Oakland has been a flash point of the Occupy movement since October when police used tear gas to break up demonstrators who refused to leave downtown. One demonstrator, a Marine veteran of the war in Iraq, suffered a skull fracture after being hit with a police projectile, according to a veteran’s group. Police said they acted after the crowd threw paint and other objects at officers.
On Saturday, police made mass arrests following an afternoon clash with protesters near the Kaiser Convention Center and then later outside a downtown YMCA, according to a police statement.
Let’s look at another link covering the same event: Dozens arrested at Occupy Oakland; protesters break into City Hall
Dozens of people were arrested in downtown Oakland skirmishes on Saturday, as an estimated 2,000 Occupy protesters tried to take over the grounds a vacant convention center, then broke into City Hall.
Police used tear gas and “flash” grenades in the afternoon against protesters who tried to tear down fences around the vacant Henry Kaiser Convention Center, where they hoped to establish a new camp. Police said some demonstrators started throwing objects at officers. There were at least 19 arrests in the afternoon.
After 6 p.m. (9 p.m. ET), police in riot gear declared a group of protesters gathered near the YMCA under mass arrest for failing to disperse, according to local media reports and livestreams. Police said about 100 demonstrators were arrested.
Several protesters at the YMCA appeared to be put hard to the ground as police moved in and at least one protester had blood on his face.
Hmmmm…Here are some of the tweets during the arrests:
ProducerMatthew Matthew KReport: Oakland police turn away KPIX, KGO television news vans attempting to reach City Hall where
#occupy protesters are inside.katz Andrew KatzMy screenshot from @OakFoSho‘s feed shows just how many #oo protestors are still awaiting arrest. #J28 pic.twitter.com/ydQZdCPvRT_com RT #OccupyOakland protesters took over City Hall, set US flags on fire #news #ows
Watchdogsniffer Watchdog ProgressiveArrests at
@OccupyOakland like nearly all the others prior to, have largely under the cover of night when the brutality is the worst. #p2
JenAngel Jen AngelRT
@jcstearns: Tag press suppression & journalist arrests with #journarrest (please RT and send tips) #oo #occupyoakland #ows #j28
acarvin Andy CarvinWoman being gurneyed into an ambulance is yelling “Officer 119!” in reference to the officer who allegedly hit beat her.
Cathastrophe CathastropheSo…when do we get concerned that every Press Pass at an Occupy Protest becomes ‘suspect’ at the officers discretion.. which is always.
KristinHanesKristin HanesWhenever journalists are arrested/detained for reporting the news, everyone’s freedom is at risk. That is what frightens me the most.
#ooWhen we walked past mobile processing center, officer said, “I’ve never put a reporter in there and didn’t want to.” #ooI was arrested. Then let go. My officer flagged his boss down and said, “do we really want to do this?” #ooWhen I was taken to be ziptied sergeant looked at press pass, “Thats not an Oakland pass, you’re getting arrested.” pic.twitter.com/F0dIjPjX
I think there will be more news on the arrests later today, as of 12:25 am:
OWSLivestream OWS Livestream
@occupywallstnyc & @occupyboston planning @occupyoakland solidarity march – LIVE at bambuser.com/v/2323789
And updating with this tweet @2:34am est
#freegavin RT @markfollman: NBC news reporting “at least 300” arrested tonight in Oakland. MoJo’s @garonsen is among them.
Sticking with the Occupy subject a little more: Protesters march through Super Bowl Village
A mix of union members and Occupy protesters from across Indiana marched through Super Bowl Village on Saturday in opposition to the state’s proposed right-to-work legislation.
About 75 marchers weaved through packed crowds at the pre-game street fair in downtown Indianapolis in the first of what could be several such protests before the big game Feb. 5 at Lucas Oil Stadium. The protesters chanted “Occupy the Super Bowl” and carried signs that read “Fight the Lie” and “Workers United Will Prevail.”
Saturday was the second straight day of right-to-work protests in the Super Bowl Village. About 40 people picketed the opening of a zip line in the Village. The 800-foot zip line allows participants to clip onto a wire about 100 feet off the ground and glide almost two blocks.
Most onlookers stared in silence as the protesters walked past them, but some like Jason Leibowitz of Jamestown were upset about their outing being interrupted. “There’s a place and a time for this,” Leibowitz said. “This isn’t it.”
Of course, the one guy these protesters are focused on is Gov. Mitch Daniels.
Most emphasized that while the right-to-work legislation appears likely to pass following Wednesday’s House vote approving the bill, that doesn’t mean an end to protests.
“If the governor signs, I want to shame him out of this state,” said Heath Hensley of Occupy Anderson. “He doesn’t want us screwing up this Super Bowl.”
State Senator Jean Breaux, D-Indianapolis, called the bill evidence that Republican legislators are not in touch with the needs of working-class voters. “If you voted Republican in the past, stop,” Breaux said.
Talking about protests and labor unions, last night the movie Made in Dagenham was on Showtime. If you haven’t seen it, you should.
I have a few other US items to share with you, after the jump.
Evening News Reads: Knew it was a matter of time…Posted: January 11, 2012 Filed under: 2012 presidential campaign, Civil Liberties, Civil Rights, Mental Health, Psychopaths in charge, Reproductive Health, Reproductive Rights, SDB Evening News Reads, Women's Rights | Tags: abortion, Superbowl, Tebow 6 Comments
I am writing this post a bit early today. Here in Banjoville we have some bad weather heading our way…I figured might as well get this scheduled if we lose electricity.
Newt Gingrich must have gotten word from up on high to lay off Romney. Newt Gingrich: I crossed the line – Jonathan Allen and Jake Sherman – POLITICO.com
Newt Gingrich signaled Wednesday that he believes his criticism of Mitt Romney’s record at Bain Capital is a mistake — and that he’s created an impression that he was echoing Democratic rhetoric.
Gingrich conceded the problem when pressed by a Rick Santorum supporter at a book-signing here Wednesday.
After ditching promises of a positive campaign, Gingrich had been leading a multi-candidate pile-on of candidates attacking Romney’s Bain record, starting in Sunday’s debate and continuing in campaign events Tuesday. If he pulls back on the criticism now, it would be the latest abrupt shift in tactics from a candidate whose campaign has been full of them.
In addition to providing another example of Gingrich’s erratic campaign style, the decision could put the former House speaker in a precarious spot: the pro-Gingrich super PAC Winning Our Future is set to begin a $3.4 million airtime buy for a 27-minute long documentary showcasing people who lost their jobs when companies Bain was invested in closed. Through Tuesday, Gingrich had expressed support for the film.
After the event, Gingrich spokesman R.C. Hammond argued the film was not actually about Bain specifically.
“It’s the decisions that Romney was making as CEO that are under review of public opinion,” Hammond said. “We’re not bringing Bain up, we’re responding to questions” prompted by the video.
In more…we knew it was a matter of time, news today:
Gov. Walker Accused Of Over 1,000 Violations Of Campaign Finance Law, Could Face $557,500 Fine | ThinkProgress
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) may have violated his state’s campaign finance law over 1,000 times in the 2010 gubernatorial campaign by failing to properly report contributions, according to a new report.
Wisconsin law requires gubernatorial campaigns to disclose information about contributors who give more than $100. Again and again, Walker appears to have skirted that requirement.
One Wisconsin Now examined the Walker for Governor’s finance records and found 1,115 instances where the campaign received contributions of more than $100 but did not properly disclose who gave the money. In total, “Walker has improperly reported well over $500,000 in contributions from inside and outside of Wisconsin,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. According to the group, which has filed a complaint with the state Government Accountability Board, Walker’s violations could result in a fine of $557,500.
This next link is from last week, however I think it is important to bring to your attention. Yes, it focuses on the State of Georgia, and the cuts to its Mental Health programs, but it is indicative of what many other states are doing in response to bad economic times. Some mentally disabled lose services | ajc.com
Evette King recently sat in her south Atlanta home fretting about how she could avoid eviction without someone to watch, feed and bathe her severely autistic son so she can work and pay the bills.
Last spring, King’s 19-year-old son, Gerald Stephens, joined a growing number of Georgians with mental illness or developmental disabilities who have been discharged or are at risk of being cut off from a state program that has been a life line for thousands of elderly and disabled people for the past 15 years.
The program — which provides housekeeping, transportation to adult day centers, care management and other services — not only helps people avoid ending up in nursing homes but ultimately saves taxpayers money, advocates say. Caring for someone in the community costs thousands of dollars less each month than in a nursing home.
In 2007, however, a federal agency told the state it had to move the program known as SOURCE — Service Options Using Resources in a Community Environment — under a different umbrella. The new, more restrictive framework limited it to the elderly and physically disabled — excluding some people who suffer from schizophrenia, Down syndrome, bipolar disorder, depression, and other mental and developmental disabilities.
“It’s destroying people’s lives,” said Talley Wells, an Atlanta Legal Aid Society attorney who represents half a dozen individuals in danger of being eliminated who sued the state in 2010.
Under the more stringent rules, the state Department of Community Health has had to carefully reassess on a case-by-case basis whether SOURCE participants require a nursing home level of care. That includes people with physical disabilities whose health may have improved over time, said Catherine Ivy, deputy director of aging and special populations in the agency’s Medicaid division.
And this is in addition to other mental health services being cut in the state.
The loss of services comes at the same time Georgia is also shelling out tens of millions of dollars to move mentally ill and developmentally disabled people out of state institutions — an effort spurred by a U.S. Department of Justice investigation into the abuse and deaths of dozens of mental hospital patients. A series of articles by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution uncovered the abuse starting in 2007.
The Department of Community Health said it doesn’t have information on how many people with mental illness or developmental disabilities have been discharged from SOURCE. But Wells said his office has received calls weekly since the beginning of 2010 from families in danger of losing funding, and he estimates hundreds could be affected.
Oh, but hang on…I have another story that will not surprise you. This time it comes from ACLU: Results of Our Poll for the Worst Prison Innovation of 2011: And the Loser Is… » Blog of Rights: Official Blog of the American Civil Liberties Union
In December, we asked you to pick among three candidates for the worst prison idea of 2011: denying prisoners lunch, charging families to visit prisoners or a pilot program in South Korea involving robotic correctional officers. You cast your votes, and the results are in!
Coming in at first place for worst prison idea of 2011, with 45% of your votes, is Gouging Families: A new law in Arizona allows the Department of Corrections to charge family members and other visitors who want to see prisoners a $25 fee. Visiting loved ones is hard enough without the new charge because, as the New York Times reports, family members “in many cases already shoulder the expense of traveling long distances to the remote areas where many prisons are located.” New fees just make it harder.
A close second, with 41% of the vote, is No Lunch: Texas has abolished lunch on weekends. On Saturdays and Sundays, inmates in 36 Texas prisons will receive one meal between 5:00 a.m. and 7:00 a.m., and a second meal between 4:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. — and no meal in between.
And in third place, it’s Robo-guards: South Korea is launching a test of robotic correctional officers. As the Los Angeles Times reports, these robo-guards (or should we say guard-bots?) are designed to act as “‘friendly robots’ that will not just guard prisoners but keep an eye on their well-being to boot.” And they may be used for matters that require something of a human touch — like detecting suicidal behavior. In fact, according to Time Magazine, the robots supposedly are “in touch with prisoners’ emotions, sensing aggressive or suicidal shifts.”
But it is all not bad news…
There was also a lot of good news in 2011 when it came to criminal justice reform, including a report of the first decline in the total prison population in nearly 40 years and a growing realization in many states that overincarceration is bad policy. Many of your comments in response to the poll called for continued change to ensure to a fair, just and safe criminal justice system, such as reducing overincarceration, creating humane prison conditions and putting an end to for-profit prisons.
And lastly, yes I know…it is a rushed post today.
Aborted Fetuses: The Awkward Guest at Your Super Bowl Party | Mother Jones
Anti-abortion activist Randall Terry has been running graphic ads of aborted fetuses in key primary states, as my colleague Tim Murphy has reported. Now the greusome ads are coming to the Super Bowl.
Nothing says “pass the dip” like a bloody fetus. Normally, Terry wouldn’t be able to get these kinds of ads on television. So he’s launching a non-serious campaign for president (running as a Democratic challenger to President Obama) in order to exploit a loophole in Federal Communications Commission rules that requires station to run campaign ads in the weeks ahead of a primary election—no matter how grisly they might be. In the 45 days ahead of a primary and 60 days ahead of a general election, candidates for federal office can run whatever they want on local stations, as long as they pay for the airtime.
Yes, the FCC can try to fine you a half-million dollars for a “wardrobe malfunction,” but bundles of bloody body parts is A-okay.
Terry can’t, however, force the networks to run his ads nationally, as Jezebel points out. So if you live in a state that doesn’t have a primary within 45 days of the Superbowl, you can enjoy your nachos without looking at fetal body parts. (Which, it’s probably worth pointing out, are from late-term abortions; the vast majority of abortions take place in the first trimester.) But if you live in a Super Tuesday state or any of the others voting in February or early March, be prepared. The Greeley Gazette writes that Terry and his group have ads “ready to go” in 40 markets.
Tie that in with a big wave of Tebowing and you’ve got yourself an evening!
So, with that have a good night, and lets hope my electricity stays on this time.