Wednesday, May 10, 2023



That is today's VANGUARD.

That is a serious issue.   For the record, though, Marianne Williamson is at 8.5% in the polling, not 10%.  Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is at 20%.  But it is inflating the figures to say Ms. Williamson is at 10%.

She might be able to get there.  

But at present, she is not there.

I do not like saying mean things about the young men on THE VANGUARD.  One looks like my youngest son (like he did 20 years ago).  They both seem like nice guys.  But I am sorry that thing yesterday was a nightmare.  (See "I do not question THE VANGUARD's ethics, just their focus.")  Was it supposed to be their take-off of Robin Leach's LIFESTYLES OF THE RICH AND FAMOUS?  If you do not know that show, watch Goldie Hawn's movie OVERBOARD -- Grant (her character's husband in the movie) is watching the show on TV during the film.

At any rate, Mr. Kennedy is at 20%.  That is an increase from 14% a few weeks earlier.  When THE VANGUARD men were laughing at him, I said they were wrong.  Mr. Kennedy is running a serious campaign.

That is the Tweet to nail down my generation. That is the Tweet to make us say, "Mr. Biden, lots of luck but we are going with Mr. Kennedy this go round."

And this is not an anti-Marianne Williamson post.  I am open to her if she addresses issues I care about.  

But, yes, Mr. Kennedy has my support.

I do not know who C.I. is supporting.  My best guest is that she is not supporting one of the three currently and playing it fair.  In 2007, I did not believe that.  Or in 2008.  But she truly was staying out of it.  What changed was the garbage the media put Hillary Clinton through.  I was there at the university when a college professor who was her friend begged her to stand-in for a Hillary supporter that was supposed to make the argument to the class alongside other people advocating for the other candidates.  So C.I. got up there and delivered a great speech.  Did not start that way.  But it ended up having people applauding.  After, I asked her, "So Hillary?"  Maybe was her reply and then a few days later you had Bill Moyers and the rest lying about her, Jesse Jackson Jr. lying about her (this was before young Jackson was sent to prison).  And that probably pushed her over to Hillary Clinton.

She knows all three.  My guess is that if she is leaning, it is toward Robert F. Kennedy Jr.  But I honestly do not think she has made up her mind yet and that she needs to see a little more from all three. 

Now let me note two links: Ann's "McMillan & Wife" and Kat's "Judy Garland and MCMILLAN & WIFE." I actually watched MCMILLAN & WIFE in real time -- and I was an adult.  That is how old I am.  The show starred Rock Hudson and Susan Saint James.  I really loved the show.  Mr. Hudson and Ms. Saint James were a great onscreen couple.  Mildred was played by the always brilliant Nancy Walker.  And there were so many good guest stars: Julie Newmar, Donna Mills, Joan Van Ark, Stefani Powers, Mildred Natwick, Lew Ayers, Tab Hunter, George Maharis, Linda Evans, Barbara Feldon, Keenan Wynn, Barbara McNair, Eileen Brennan, Dabney Coleman, Wally Cox, Sheree North, and Susan Anspach.   

This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for today:

Wednesday, May 10, 2023.  The UK returns some of the loot to Iraq, the GOP playbook is right there out in the open but 'left' YOUTUBERS would rather cover their friends' weddings than the attacks on the LGBTQ+ community.

Oklahoma’s Republican governor, Kevin Stitt, has argued that his party could win the 2024 elections if it continues its anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric.

The governor said during a televised interview on Monday (8 May) that he believes Americans think that Democratic representatives have “gone too far” in protecting the LGBTQ+ community.

He claimed that if Republicans continued to dismantle queer rights, the party would be sure to “win” when Americans go to the polls in November 2024’s presidential, congressional and gubernatorial elections.

What do you think?

The media has normalized hate against the LGBTQ+ community.  People don't want to address that reality because it would require pointing a lot of fingers at themselves.  THE NEW YORK TIMES has yet again walked from science -- they do that all the time -- to target this community.  They did it during AIDS.  At the height of AIDS, the paper was run by the most homophobic editor at any US publication.  And they're just reclaiming their old image these days.  But, please note, as bad as that is, it's the silence that's worse.

The mushy middle of America goes back and forth.  That happens for a reason.  They have no core beliefs and they just go with where the wind blows.  So when THE TIMES and FOX NEWS and others attack the LGBTQ+ community and the rest remain largely silent, the mushy middle goes along with the only group speaking.

In other words, that band of useless YOUTUBERS -- straights who think the whole world should be grateful if an aside in a one hour podcast mentions LGBTQ+ persons -- won't say anything, then, yes, that hate merchant in Oklahoma is probably correct.

THE VANGUARD?  Zac and Gavin present as allies.  Present.  But then, see Ruth's "I do not question THE VANGUARD's ethics, just their focus," this program that can never devote the full hour -- or even 15 minutes -- to the attacks on the LGBTQ+ community, wasted three hours on the wedding of Kyle and Krystal?  

Time and again, they make time for everything but defending the most at risk in the current climate.  That's THE VANGUARD, that's all the ones with White hosts pretty much.  BLACK POWER MEDIA grasps what's going on while so many other play obtuse. 

Louisiana representatives on Tuesday passed a "Don't Say Gay" bill, advancing it to the Senate with a vote of 67-28.

Driving the news: House Bill 466 prohibits K-12 public school employees from teaching or discussing sexual orientation or gender identity in the classroom.

  • It also regulates pronouns and names, saying they must match birth certificates.

The big picture: New Orleans has one of the largest concentrations of LGBTQ+ people in the U.S., with 4.7% of the adult population identifying as members of the community.

  • A 2021 analysis from UCLA's Williams Institute estimates there are about 46,000 LGBTQ+ community members here.

Zoom out: Including the "Don't Say Gay" bill, Louisiana lawmakers are debating five anti-LGBTQ+ bills this session that could affect nearly every facet of life, particularly for youth.

Issues include:

Pronouns: House Bill 81, called the “Given Name Act” by its author, requires students to use the name and pronoun on their birth certificate. It passed 61-33 in the House on Monday and now heads to the Senate.

  • It has an exception if there is written consent from the parent, but teachers can reject the parent’s choice if it conflicts with the teacher’s “religious or moral convictions.”

Health care: A bill that prohibits doctors from offering gender-affirming medical care, such as hormone treatments or puberty-blocking drugs, to anyone younger than 18 advanced out of committee and heads to the full House.

I'm sorry but that?  It's much more important than Krystal's late-life wedding.

When John Stauber and Jonathan Turley mis read the actual backlash to Bud Light because they don't realize that LGBTQ+ people are pissed at the brewer and done with Bud Light?  It's because they apparently don't know any gay people.

And I have to wonder if the bulk of the left -- positioning themselves as spokespeople and media -- know any.

Maybe if you did, you would use your time on YOUTUBE or wherever to actually talk about things that mattered -- that will never, ever be your friends' wedding, not when you're claiming to do a political show.

So many people walked through school unscathed.  So many, because of the age, were too focused on themselves to grasp what was going on around them.  But for a lot of LGBTQ+ people, school was a living hell and it was made worse by adults who laughed and encouraged attacks on the ones seen as different. 

And now we've got hate merchants who want to return to those times.  I don't know why you wouldn't call this out. 

But grasp, those of you so worried that someone votes for Joe or Robert or Marianne, your silence is going to destroy the Democratic Party's chances in 2024.  You need to get off your candy ass, deal with whatever issues you have that make you silent, and come out in defense of a group of people who are now under daily attack.

A Wisconsin community is outraged after the local school board renewed the contract of a teacher who allegedly used racist and homophobic language in class.

At a school board meeting in Wausau, Wisconsin, on Monday night, nearly 30 speakers testified for an hour-and-a-half in support of a gay student of Hmong-Lao descent who recently filed an official complaint against Robert Perkins, alleging that the Wausau East High School band instructor directed racial and homophobic slurs at him. 

Nevertheless, following the public comment period, the school board, which had previously dismissed the student’s complaint, renewed Perkins’s contract for the following school year, the Wausau Daily Herald reports.

Hmong-Lao is required, by law, to attend school.  He is a kid and he's taking abuse at school.  That's outrageous and it only becomes more outrageous when you grasp that it's an adult abusing the child.  There needs to be a lawsuit immediately.  

This crap went on in the past and was outrageous then but in 2023, a teacher mocking a child, spitting hate at the child, oh, hell no.

Robert Perkins should have been fired.

But let's talk about Krystal and Kyle's wedding instead, right?

In a better world, high school musicals would have become more friendly toward LGBTQ+ people than my Catholic high school was when it required our production of Spamalot to replace all utterances of “gay” with “happy.” Unfortunately, as the Washington Post reports, school districts across the country are canceling high school theatre productions for including LGBTQ+ content and characters, as well as frank discussions of race and racism and anything else administrators deem inappropriate.

This kind of censorship made national headlines in January, when, halfway through rehearsals, school board members in Ohio canceled a Cardinal High School’s production of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. The school board objected to it because it had, among other perceived infractions, a character whose fathers are gay. Although the musical was eventually staged with some revisions after Spelling Bee creators Rebecca Feldman and Rachel Sheinkin reached out to the board directly, other schools haven’t been so fortunate.

As the Post reports, high school theater productions have been stopped across the United States, often because they include LGBTQ+ content or depictions of racism. Examples range from a gender-bending reimagining of Robin Hood (titled Marian, or the True Tale of Robin Hood) being scrapped in Indiana because of phone calls complaining about the play’s queer characters, to the axing of a Florida production of the play Indecent, which centers on an affair between women.

Where's that defender of art, Richard Dreyfuss!  You know, the man's who has given the same performance since his bit part on BEWITCHED back in 1966.  He hid behind art to flaunt his hatred of others but he won't defend actual art.  He'll just go out the joke he always was as the American people laugh at his whining that he can't wear Blackface and those of us in the arts laugh about that as well but also about the fact that he thinks he can do Shakespeare.  

The Republican Party has made this the campaign issue for 2024.  If you're not up to defending the LGBTQ+ community, you're not up to running for president.

I'm looking at you, Robert, and you, Marianne.

Joe's old, he's old as dirt, there's no denying that.  There's also no denying that he's the only one of the three grasping the GOP playbook and the only one of the three tackling this issue.

Pulse Nightclub shooting survivor, Brandon Wolf, did not mince words for disgraced "journalist," Megyn Kelly, after she made disgusting comments on Twitter attacking gun reform activists. 

Kelly, a former Fox News Channel anchor, who was fired from NBC in 2018 over blackface comments on the air, tweeted, “Serious q for gun control advocates: you’ve failed to effect change. Pls face it. You can’t do it, thx to the 2A. We’re all well aware you don’t like that fact, but fact it is. What’s next? Must we just stay here sad, concerned, lamenting? Could we possibly talk OTHER SOLUTIONS?”

Kelly’s post, which was tweeted while police were still canvassing the crime scene at the Allen, Texas outlet mall mass shooting, leaving eight dead over the weekend, was not only callous, it’s inaccurate. According to the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, contrary to Kelly's claim that gun reform advocates have 'failed,' Connecticut now actually has the sixth lowest rate of gun deaths, after enacting laws there in the wake of the mass shooting deaths of 20 first graders and six adults in Newtown in 2012. It’s not only safer in Connecticut, but it’s also safer in surrounding states. Additionally, as of 2021, Connecticut had the eleventh lowest rate of crime gun exports. Texas, which has continued to expand access to guns, has the 28th highest gun death rate in the country, including the horrific deaths of 19 children and two teachers in Uvalde last year.

Wolf, an LGBTQ civil rights and gun reform activist, who's currently serving as the press secretary for Equality Florida, responded to Kelly’s tweet and invoked his own horrific mass shooting encounter at Pulse in Orlando: “I refuse to believe that dead children on a sidewalk must be the price of admission for being an American, that my best friend’s mutilated body on a nightclub floor is just the way the cookie must crumble.”

"No. I refuse to accept this nightmarish experiment as inevitable," he added on Instagram. 

In the wake of the 2022 Club Q shooting in Colorado Springs and the 2016 Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, which was the second deadliest in US history, LGBTQ Americans feel especially at risk and unsafe as it pertains to gun violence, which has become an epidemic. As of May 7th, The Gun Violence Archive reports there have been more than 200 mass shootings in 2023.

The issue of mass shootings has become so commonplace, that other nations around the world are issuing travel advisories against their people visiting the United States. CNN reports that Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, Israel, France, Germany, Mexico, Japan, and New Zealand have all issued travel warnings to anyone considering traveling to the United States. 

In an interview with GLAAD, Wolf said that his message is simple: "It does not have to be this way. We do not have to serve our children up as sacrifices to the profit-obsessed gun lobby. We do not have to sit by while our neighborhoods become war zones, content to throw up our hands and refuse to address the common denominators. No matter your gaslighting, we know the truth. It's the guns. And we can do -- and expect -- better."

"The LGBTQ community is under assault. Extremists are wielding the power of government against us while they use fear and intimidation to try and force us back into the closet. That reality is making life less safe for us. But we have been here before. We have long been demonized, dehumanized, and used as a cultural wedge issue. But we have forged ahead, securing civil rights protections and greater social acceptance than ever before by refusing to be erased and being unapologetically us. This moment calls for us to raise our flags higher than ever and send a message that we will not be erased," Wolf added.

Wolf also told GLAAD that we all have a stake in this fight and encouraged everyone to take action in their own way: "Every day Americans must be on the frontlines in the fight against gun violence. Find an organization building grassroots power and volunteer or donate. Start showing up in the state legislature. Become a voter for whom refusal to support gun safety reforms is a dealbreaker. Educate and induct your neighbors into the fight. Do not wait until it is your child lifeless on the sidewalk or your best friend who never gets the chance to return your call."

Most of all, "Act now," Wolf said.

Megyn doesn't want to talk about that shooting because she and Glenneth can't pin it off on a transgender person.  She also doesn't want people exploring the roots of that shooter because they lead back to her and her hatred.

On that, some asked in e-mails, "Are you going to be nicer to Glenn Greenwald?"  Because his husband died?  Hell no.  I warned Glenneth as far back as October that his husband was going to die and that he needed to put the talk show on hold, get his ass to the hospital and stay there.  He made his choice.  Now his Twitter feed is one sad Tweet about David after another. Maybe that helps Glenneth but it doesn't thing for David.  Dropping everything and being there for David would have meant something to David.

I've buried a husband, I know what I'm talking about and that's why I publicly called him out in real time over this.  Glenn's never going to get over the guilt.  That's his own problem.  He made a choice.  

His failure to do what was needed goes to his ego.  

If you're sad for him right now, grasp how pathetic his future relationships are going to be.  He was at his most 'left' when he met David and he also looked a lot better.  Now he's a transphobe cozying up to homophobes and he's going to try to find a new man?  Lots of luck with the selections available to a self-hating gay man who looks about sixty and has that ridiculous hair color (from a box).  

Let's move over to Iraq.

The media working overtime trying to normalize what just happened.

You show up at my door in a pickle because your curling iron shorted out and I lend you mine.  You keep it for a week or even a month before returning it, then you did borrow it.  You keep that curling iron for 100 years?  You stole it.  

This was never borrowed property.  It was stolen.

More than 6,000 ancient artefacts have been returned to Iraq, bringing the total recovered in five years to 34,000.

The birthplace of the world's earliest recorded civilisation is home to thousands of artefacts. Many have been lost and stolen through conflict and by opportunistic poachers and have yet to be found or returned. Others were on long-term loans.

The latest items were handed back by the UK after they were borrowed more than 100 years ago.

“We have succeeded, through diplomacy, in returning 34,502 artefacts since 2019 until now,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Al Sahaf told The National on Tuesday.

According to the Iraqi Presidency statement, President Rashid attended a ceremony at the Iraqi Embassy in London to retrieve the 6,000 antiquities that Britain had “borrowed” from Iraq for “scholarly purposes” since 1923.

The move occurred on the eve of Rashid’s journey to the United Kingdom to attend King Charles III’s coronation ceremony, during which Rashid chose to bring the relics back to Baghdad and hand them over to the Iraqi National Museum.

The Iraqi Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson, Ahmed al-Sahaf, announced in a statement that Iraq is getting 38 crates containing Iraqi antiques borrowed by Britain.

Hakim Al-Shammari, Media Director of the Iraqi State Board of Antiques and Heritage (SBAH), noted that the retrieved antiques are a vital indicator of Iraqi diplomatic achievements under the current administration.

Iraq declared the greatest recovery effort for smuggled Iraqi cultural relics and jewels, returning some 17,000 precious artifacts from the United States at the end of July 2021.

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