Minnesota Republican: ‘I watched Minneapolis get destroyed’ by integration

Fucking Klu Kluxer.

From Raw Story: http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2011/04/01/minnesota-republican-i-watched-minneapolis-get-destroyed-by-integration/

By Muriel Kane
Friday, April 1st, 2011

As Minnesota’s state senate debates a public school funding bill that would remove funding from integration programs in the major cities of Minneapolis-St. Paul and Duluth and shift it to a statewide literacy drive, one freshman Republican has been particularly blunt in his opinions.

“I watched Minneapolis get destroyed,” Sen. Dan Hall stated on Thursday, “so I not only didn’t want my kids in the school system, I took them out of Minneapolis because they ruined our neighborhoods with integration and [de]segregation.”

“My best friends are minority, they think integration in foolish,” Hall insisted. “It’s a ploy to get more money. … It’s disrespectful to tell my friends, my minority friends that they can’t make it without extra special help.”

Continue reading:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2011/04/01/minnesota-republican-i-watched-minneapolis-get-destroyed-by-integration/

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‘This Is Not America’: SWAT Team Evicts Grandmother, Community Fights Back

From Huffington Post:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/van-jones/this-is-not-america-swat-_b_843708.html

Van Jones and Marianne Manilov
Posted: 04/ 1/11

Day after day, the media and government ignore an ongoing national tragedy: a tsunami of foreclosures is still sweeping millions of Americans out of their homes. As many as three million American families this year will hear a terrifying knock on the door: a law enforcement officer will tell them to get out, because a bank won’t work out a fair deal and allow them to stay.

But one remarkable grandmother this month refused to go quietly.

And her brave example — including her willingness to stand up, along with her neighbors, to a SWAT team — finally got elected officials to intervene.

A modern day Rosa Parks, her courage may well spark a national movement.

Grandmother and longtime Rochester resident Catherine Lennon was evicted from her home on March 28.

It was a moving scene captured on the video below.

Continue reading at:   http://www.huffingtonpost.com/van-jones/this-is-not-america-swat-_b_843708.html

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Friday Night Fun and Culture

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AB 433 to Allow Updated Birth Certificates for Transgender Californians

From The San Francisco Bay Times: http://www.sfbaytimes.com/?sec=article&article_id=14853

By Dennis McMillan
Published: March 31, 2011

A bill that would alleviate the confusion, anxiety, and even danger that transgender people face when they have identity documents that do not reflect who they are, passed the Assembly Judiciary committee in a 7-5 vote.  Authored by Assembly member Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), sponsored by Equality California and co-sponsored by the Transgender Law Center, the Vital Statistics Modernization Act (AB 433), would streamline current law and clarify that eligible petitioners living or born in California can submit a gender change petition in any jurisdiction in the State of California.

The bill would also allow people who were born in or who live in California to use a simplified process that requires medical certification from an attending physician that the individual has undergone “clinically appropriate treatment” to obtain a new birth certificate to reflect their gender.

“For transgender people, recognition of our gender is a matter of basic human dignity,” Transgender Law Center Executive Director Masen Davis told “Bay Times.” He continued, “California law allows people to change their birth certificates; however, the current law contains out-dated procedural barriers that make this process onerous and confusing for transgender people. AB 433, The Vital Statistics Modernization Act, if passed, would allow transgender Californians to use a straightforward process that conforms to the standards set by the United States Department of State for gender changes on passports.”

“The process for transgender individuals to get a birth certificate that accurately reflects their gender is confusing and complicated,” said Geoff Kors, Equality California executive director. “AB 433 would streamline the existing process for petitioning for a court order recognizing a change of gender and obtaining an updated birth certificate.” He said the legislation would also guarantee that these determinations will be made by licensed physicians, not the government, and would bring state law in line with federal standards while also alleviating confusion and misinterpretation.

This change aligns California’s standards to the standards set by the United States Department of State for gender changes on passports.

Complete article at:  http://www.sfbaytimes.com/?sec=article&article_id=14853


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More Americans Back Unions Than Governors in State Disputes

From Gallup Polls: http://www.gallup.com/poll/146921/Americans-Back-Unions-Governors-State-Disputes.aspx

Nearly 8 in 10 adults in union households are following the issue closely

by Lydia Saad

April 1, 2011
PRINCETON, NJ — With political battles over state budgets and collective bargaining still playing out to varying degrees in Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana, Maine, and several other states, 48% of Americans say they agree more with the unions in these disputes, while 39% agree more with the governors. Thirteen percent favor neither side or have no opinion.

With Whom Do Americans Agree More -- Governors or State Employee Unions -- in State Disputes? March 2011

Complete article at:  http://www.gallup.com/poll/146921/Americans-Back-Unions-Governors-State-Disputes.aspx

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Botox, Bingeing, Bullying and Breast-Ironing: We Must Stop the War on Women’s Bodies

Silicone pumping falls in this category.

From Alternet: http://www.alternet.org/health/150453/botox%2C_bingeing%2C_bullying_and_breast-ironing%3A_we_must_stop_the_war_on_women%27s_bodies/

In a globalized world, we must fight toxic body culture by “becoming what we have never seen”–rewriting the paradigm of health and self-acceptance.

By Courtney E. Martin
March 31, 2011

When most people hear the words “body image,” the demographic that comes to mind is young, white, wealthy, American women with self-esteem issues. When “body image” is covered on television, it is most often positioned as solely about eating disorders, and further, the most extreme forms; Entertainment Tonight boosts ratings with their anorexic twins profile and HBO’s documentary THIN focuses almost exclusively on the upper-middle class kind of insecurity that takes root in adolescence and sends many girls down a path of self-hatred.

But the true battle against bodies in our highly toxic culture conjures a far more diverse and vast picture. Imagine this global collage: a fat, black kid in rural Mississippi is bullied for his body weight, not just by peers, but doctors, coaches, and health teachers who have been stirred up by the “obesity epidemic” coverage; a young girl in Argentina who would wear the American equivalent of a size 10, can’t find any clothes that fit because they still won’t carry a range of sizes despite legislation requiring that they do; a young Bengali woman’s belly grows swollen with an American couple’s baby as she tries to earn some extra money for her own family.

As an international body-focused movement takes form, we must re-imagine who it is that we’re fighting for. It’s not just rich, white girls with eating disorders—though we’re fighting for them, too—it’s women worldwide who are suffering from what Susie Orbach calls “corporeal colonialism.” In our increasingly globalized world, where corporate conglomerates produce the majority of both the products we buy and the media we read, we are all stuck together in this sticky, toxic web of disembodiment.

Those who care about real change must move forward with a common vision of who we are fighting for and, most importantly, with. We are fighting for ourselves, of course, but we are also fighting for and with the next generation. We are fighting for and with the 8-year-old girl in the UK who recently reportedly got Botox injections. We are fighting for and with the children of parents who have thrown away hard-earned money on bogus and dangerous diets to the tune of $40 billion each year; many of these kids want to break the cycle. We are fighting for and with the little girl in Cameroon whose breasts are ironed.

As Dr. Sayantani DasGupta recently wrote for Feministing.com: “Toxic body culture isn’t a white woman’s issue. It’s not even a woman’s issue—it’s all our concern. But only if a discussion of advertising happens within an understanding of consumerism, if beauty standards are discussed alongside able-ism or the oppressions of gender and sexuality binaries, if local embodiment politics is contextualized within broader global forces.” In other words, unless the movement is broad and intersectional, inclusive and genuinely diverse, we will be replicating many of the invisibilities that we are fighting so hard against.

Continue reading at:  http://www.alternet.org/health/150453/botox%2C_bingeing%2C_bullying_and_breast-ironing%3A_we_must_stop_the_war_on_women%27s_bodies/

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March to stop the freeloaders

From The Hill: http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/economy-a-budget/153255-march-to-stop-the-freeloaders

By Leo W. Gerard

The nation’s greedy corporations and insatiable wealthy are fattening themselves on workers. There’s no trickle down. It’s the opposite; the rich have been sucking the economic lifeblood from the middle class for decades.

When reckless Wall Street banksters get taxpayer-funded bailouts, billionaires get tax breaks and gigantic corporations like GE and Bank of America pay absolutely no federal income taxes, they’re getting for free the very public services that enable them to make massive profits in this country – the courts, the roads, the trade regulators, the patent enforcement.

The middle class doesn’t get those big time special deals and loopholes. Workers pay their taxes. As a result, it’s workers footing the bill for the government services that enrich the rich. Greedy corporations, their CEOs and the right-wing politicians they buy with tens of millions in campaign cash are freeloaders.

It’s time workers stood up to the freeloaders. Join Monday’s We Are One rallies. These demonstrations across the country by religious groups, social justice organizations and labor unions will illustrate that the middle class is mad as hell and not going to take trickster economics anymore.

It’s time for greedy corporations and the insatiable rich to pay their fair share. It’s time to stop cuts to the government programs most treasured by and vital to the middle class and the vulnerable in this country – education, public transportation, Social Security.

Continue reading at:  http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/economy-a-budget/153255-march-to-stop-the-freeloaders

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