Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Last Call For Juggling Fire

Human cautionary tale Pam Geller wants to free speechify the Evul Mooslems to death by having her little advocacy group for Islamophobia run her winning contest cartoon of Mohammad on DC Metro buses.

Pamela Geller's anti-Muslim group, the American Freedom Defense Initiative, will attempt to launch a new ad campaign in Washington, D.C., using the winning image from the group's controversial Muhammad cartoon contest held in Garland, Texas. 
Geller, who has pushed for controversial anti-Islam ads in big city transit systems before, said she submitted the ads to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) in the hopes that the cartoon will run on city buses and in Metro train stations.

"Because the media and the cultural and political elites continue to self-enforce the Sharia without the consent of the American people by refusing to show any depictions of Muhammad or showing what it was in Texas that had jihadists opening fire, we are running an ad featuring the winning cartoon by former Muslim Bosch Fawstin from our Muhammad Art Exhibit and Cartoon Contest in Garland, Texas," Geller wrote in a statement on Breitbart
WMATA confirmed to TPM that the transit authority received the American Freedom Defense Initiative's ad request on Friday and that the ads are under review.

On one hand, free speech.  On the other hand, I'd love to see CAIR run ads depicting a cartoon of Jesus or Moses in an unflattering light and see how people suddenly have a problem with free speech.

And if Geller believes in free speech so much, let's have her post the cartoon on her front door, as one TPM commenter suggested.

The Martyr Mentality

When I say that the modern conservative moment is at heart a victim complex, this is what I mean. Sen. Marco Rubio's insipid insistence that Christianity, the dominant religious group in this country, is somehow on the verge of being outlawed because of same-sex marriage is patently ridiculous, and yet you will see conservatives argue that the Obama administration is targeting Christians and is just hours away from rounding them up.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) warned in a newly published interview that condemnation of those who oppose gay marriage on religious grounds poses a "real and present danger" to Christianity.

The interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network marked the latest input from a Republican presidential hopeful on an issue that has received widespread attention in the nascent campaign.

"We are at the water's edge of the argument that mainstream Christian teaching is hate speech," Rubio told CBN in the interview published online Tuesday. "Because today we've reached the point in our society where if you do not support same-sex marriage you are labeled a homophobe and a hater."

Rubio went on to talk about what the next step will be.

"After they are done going after individuals, the next step is to argue that the teachings of mainstream Christianity, the catechism of the Catholic Church, is hate speech," he said. "That's a real and present danger."

Mind you, this is not a fringe lunatic saying this.  This is a sitting United States Senator running for the White House on a major party ticket. It's embarrassing and deeply ignorant...and yet if Marco Rubio really was being persecuted for his speech, he's still able to give a national interview, picked up by national media outlets, to make his free speech heard.  And as Tim Teeman of the Daily Beast reminds us, the LGBTQ community really has been the victim of persecution and hate speech for decades in America.

Does Marco Rubio have any idea of the toxicity of the phrase he is flinging around to score some cheap political capital?

Does he have any idea of the true ‘hate speech’ LGBTs have suffered, not just on political platforms at the hands of people like Marco Rubio in their stoking of their Christian voting base—words like ‘unnatural,’ ‘pretend families,’ words of exclusion that seek to put us outside the boundaries of family, home, and love?

Because ‘hate speech’ doesn’t end on political platforms. They’re the words that LGBTs hear before they are beaten by homophobes on street corners and in schoolyards. Beaten, sometimes fatally. How dare Marco Rubio seek to invoke a phrase like ‘hate speech’ to feed his own pathetic persecution complex? Has he any idea of the true cost of ‘hate speech’ as it has been used against LGBT people?

Because now that there's a movement towards equality in this country, suddenly Christianity is the target.  If your view of Christianity includes, say, stoning and beating gay people to death, maybe that's not compatible with America's laws.

And yet, you're allowed to hold that opinion without people bursting into your house to drag you out into the street to murder you, unlike people who are gay in America.

Rubio is playing victim to people who want to hear how they are victims when those people finally fight back. Fifty years ago, Rubio would have been fighting for segregation and telling us the KKK was on the verge of being classified as a hate group.

Which, by the way, it is today.

One Vote Makes All The Difference

Today the Supreme Court agreed to hear a Texas case later this year that could rewrite the political map for Latinos in states with a large number of undocumented residents.

Since the 1960s, the high court has enforced the "one person, one vote" rule to require that election districts be roughly equal in population. This rule is based on the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment. and it is applied to all election districts, whether for members of Congress, state legislators, county supervisors or local school boards.
At least once a decade, these districts may be redrawn based on new census data. The U.S. Census Bureau seeks to count the total population, including noncitizens and immigrants in the country illegally. 
In its appeal, the Project on Fair Representation based in Austin, Texas, says the districts should be balanced based on the number of eligible voters. The group sued on behalf of Sue Evenwel, a leader of the Texas Republican Party. She lives in Titus County in east Texas, where her state Senate district had 533,010 citizens of voting age in 2011. However, another Senate district had 372,00 citizens of voting age. 
The appeal in Evenwel vs. Abbott argues that her right to an equal vote is being denied because Texas officials relied on the census data to balance the districts. Requiring states to switch to counting only citizens will "ensure that voters are afforded the basic right to an equal vote," her lawyers said.

Forcing states like California and Texas to rewrite districts based on citizens versus residents brings up all sorts of second-order shenanigans, the one off the top of my head is again, forcing these states to identify the undocumented rather than relying on estimates and then deporting them en masse. There's a lot of messy things that could result from a SCOTUS order along those lines.

We'll see where this goes, but this seems on first pass like yet another GOP attempt to harm minority voters through the Well Actually process.


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