Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist died this evening. The Supreme Court now hangs in the balance, as Bush gets to make a second pick. Is there any doubt that this is the time and place that he will try to find an unabashed "conservative" who is against personal liberty, against privacy rights, for corporations instead of workers and anti-environment.
Rehnquist's death almost assures that John Roberts will be confirmed. This is because he will look moderate standing beside the next person that Bush will likely pick. The future of gay rights, Rove v. Wade and the right to privacy are clearly in question. Let us hope for the best, but realize that Bush's number one priority has always been to satisfy his base of right wing zealots.
Right wing group Focus on the Family has lurid new website designed, in-part, to distort gay life. It is sad that a ministry that has the potential to help a lot of familes thinks that it must destroy gay families to carry out its mission.
A poll released yesterday found that nearly two-thirds of Americans say that creationism should be taught alongside evolution in public schools. The poll found that 42 percent of respondents held strict creationist views, agreeing that "living things have existed in their present form since the beginning of time."
In contrast, 48 percent said they believed that humans had evolved over time. But of those, 18 percent said that evolution was "guided by a supreme being," and 26 percent said that evolution occurred through natural selection. In all, 64 percent said they were open to the idea of teaching creationism in addition to evolution, while 38 percent favored replacing evolution with creationism.
The poll was conducted July 7-17 by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life and the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. The questions about evolution were asked of 2,000 people. The margin of error was 2.5 percentage points.
This poll is evidence of America's decline. Our nation will not continue to prosper if we hold anti-science, backward and semi-literate views. America's greatness was a result of inventing new technology, medical breakthroughs and embracing the Enlightenment. America also succeeded because of our political system, separating Church and State.
This new poll shows how everything that made America strong is at risk from the Stone Age views of fundamentists. Every day, the U.S. looks more like the Christian fundamentalist version of Iran. In the long-run, this will be a disaster that slolwly lowers our standard of living and lessens our standing in the world. There is no such thing as a successful fundamentalist state. The U.S. will be no exception. All one can expect from a theocracy is death, destruction, poverty and misery. Freedom and theocracy are incompatible.
It is also crucial to recognize that a nation that believes in creationism will not support gay rights. All the countries that are most gay supportive are the least fundamentalist. That is why we have gay rights in Holland and in Saudi Arabia gay people are beheaded. I can only hope the U.S. gets off at the Enlightenment exit on the current autobahn to the Dark Ages.
The Alliance for Justice, a coalition of 71 women's rights, environmental and other liberal advocacy groups, issued a 103-page report yesterday attacking John G. Roberts Jr.'s record and announced formal opposition to his Supreme Court nomination.
"Judge Roberts has advocated diminishing the role the courts play in enforcing individual rights and freedoms," Alliance president Nan Aron said at news conference. She contended that Roberts has "expressed strong objections to the courts' long-standing recognition of the right to privacy," the right that underpins the Supreme Court's 1973 decision on abortion, Roe v. Wade .
Any judge that does not believe in the right to privacy should not be on the Supreme Court. I have been hesitant to say that Roberts should be blocked, only because I don't think Bush will find a more acceptable replacement. However, with his poll numbers in free fall, now might be the time to take Bush on.
If I were these liberal groups, I would be very careful in opposing Roberts. They should only try to knock him out if they have a strong case showing that he is an extremist. Without such a solid case, the American people will side with the Republicans.
On that note, please consider giving money to the Alliance for Justice, the Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and People for the American Way. They have all worked overtime to make sure we know whether Judge Roberts is another Scalia-type. Please consider rewarding these groups for such dedication.
Rising gas prices and ongoing bloodshed in Iraq continue to take their toll on President Bush, whose standing with the public has sunk to an all-time low, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll.
The survey found Bush's job approval rating at 45 percent, down seven points since January and the lowest ever recorded for the president in Post-ABC surveys. Fifty-three percent disapproved of the job Bush is doing.
Is this a surprise? Bush was failing miserably before 9-11 and blaming all of his mishaps on former President Bill Clinton. After 9-11, he cynically maipulated the tragedy to save his awful presidency. But time has marched on and Bush can no longer blame Bill Clinton or 9-11. He may try to blame the hurricane, but people are finally seeing that the only natural disaster is his presidency. With nothing to distract the American people, the nightmare of his policies are finally in the spotlight, and people do not like what they are seeing. Thus, Bush is returning to where he was headed before 9-11 - down the path as one of the worst presidents in America's history.
A 22 year old man in Nebraska is being prosecuted for statutory rape because his new wife is 14. The high school sweehearts (Okay, only she was in school) hopped the border and married in Kansas, where apparently you can marry anyone older than a fetus. When they returned from Dorthy-land an aggressive cornhusker prosecutor threw the book at the older husband.
The townspeople were up in arms. Not becasue the 22 year old was shacking up with a kid, but because the police wouldn't let them be. Aren't these these child abusers and their apologists the same people who are passing anti-gay laws and shredding Constitutions to prohibit gay folks the freedom to marry? Good thing we have red state straights in Kansas and Nebraska to "protect" marriage from gay people.