Friday, January 27, 2006

Use Your Turn Signal Every Time

Even if - no - Especially if you don't think anyone will see it.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Tax the Churches

Religious conservatives don't understand the importance of seperation of church and state and I've touched on this topic before. It's a very important concept to understand and one only needs to look at the horrors in other countries that do rule by their concept of God's will to see exactly why it is important (think suicide bombers as martyrs).

Our country seems to be swiftly marching down that same destructive path and it needs to stop. However, if these religious conservatives don't understand the concept then it's high time we start taxing the churches. Churches shouldn't get to run the country and also remain tax free. Imagine how that would help the deficits!

Seriously though - it simply can't work. Which church should make the rules? Ask 10 people in 10 different states and you will probably get 10 different answers. And possibly one of those would agree that suicide bombers are an excelent way to make a point. Another would agree that everyone should have 5 wives.

Let Law be Law and God be God.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Humans as Microbes

Did you ever notice that it doesn't matter if you are using a telescope, or a microscope you can see nearly the same thing? At the atomic level you see electrons rotating around a nucleus which are rotating around even smaller particles. In space we see moons rotating around planets rotating around stars rotating around black holes etc.

As a child looking into the dark sky of South Dakota I was amazed to be able to see our own Milky Way galaxy overhead. I couldn't imagine there were so many objects in space! In my adult life I've learned that our galaxy is only one of millions of other galaxies that are rotating around their centers and around other objects.

It seems the further we can look out into space the more there is to discover! Will we ever see to the end of it? I doubt we ever will. But the idea of the similarity between really tiny objects and ever increasing larger objects make me think that it could be possible that the earth might be only a part of a much larger object - like an atom is part of a larger object. Maybe all those galaxies are really something like electrons providing energy to this larger object.

It's really mind boggling to think in this manner, but it occurs to me that the "big picture" might be way bigger than we typically think. I only hope that when we die we get all the answers to these questions. And I also hope we are part of something really cool. But then that cool thing will probably only be part of something else.


Friday, January 20, 2006

My Car Supports Bush/Cheney - But I Don't

It took only a hint that a hurricane might hit to send gas prices soaring even before the storms stuck. But the storms have passed and most of the damage has been repaired, high driving season is over and yet gas prices continue their rise. Surely there MUST be a reason for the high prices - right?

There is. Your President, Vice President and a cast of political friends are in the business and profiting greatly. There really is no good excuse for the out of control prices - there certainly is no shortage. The oil companies have reported record profits in the billions. It's revolting.

I'm sure glad I didn't fall into that SUV trap.

I'm no economist so I invite discussion if you don't agree.

What's in a Word?

Words are very powerful. Just one can make a big difference. Extremist politicians like to change a word to benefit their cause and sometimes it takes only one. By changing the word "Equal" to the word "Special" they have gained a big following because nobody thinks homosexuals should have "special" rights. Neither do I.

The truth is that we want EQUAL RIGHTS - nothing more and certainly nothing less.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Mutts are People Too

This is sort of a follow up to my entry entitled Put the Children First, only this time it deals with pets.

My Ex invited me to visit the other day and see the new puppy he had given his boyfriend for Christmas. It was a beautiful Boston Terrier that was just delightful and fun. But I was surprised that my ex would spend that kind of money on a pure breed dog. Back when we were together we always considered rescuing a dog that was homeless instead - or maybe that was just me.

Pure Breed dogs are wonderful and I have nothing against them. My only point is that there are so many pets in shelters every day that are put to sleep for lack of homes. I wish more people would consider adopting one of these animals rather than paying big money for the pure breed animal.

I'm proud to say that in my adult life I have rescued 3 mixed breed dogs who have been wonderful companions that I wouldn't have traded for the world. Thankfully even gay folk can legally adopt a pet!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Preaching to the Choir

I'd like to make a positive difference in this world - possibly through my Blog. But it occurred to me that people really only read things they already agree with. So I decided to make a point of reading something that differs with my point of view. My Supervisor at work, who is the political opposite of me, had this book carefully placed in her office so I thought I'd take a look. The name of the book is "The Enemy Within" by Michael Savage.

I only got about 20 pages in and couldn't continue. What a Nazi that dude is! I sincerely hope all Republicans are not that off base.

This short literary adventure didn't change my mind or make me lean any further to the right. But, despite a bad choice here, I still want to read things I don't necessarily agree with - and I hope other people do too.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

A Personal Message to Pat Robertson

Dear Pat,

Since you are always looking for signs from God in ordinary events, How about this one:

Hardly any church steeples survived the winds of Hurricane Wilma. Most of them are not back up yet. Isn't that interesting?

Why do Hospitals have to advertise?

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Sticks and Stones

You may have noticed on my previous post "Racism on the Flip Side" that I did not use politically correct terms. Actually, I did start to put them in but it got weird so I change it back. Native American Reservation just didn't sound right to me having grown up there and I've always been against the term African American because a lot of people of color do not come from Africa and may not even be Americans.

In most cases I do try to be politically correct but it can be quite difficult and frustrating. I think people today have just gotten too sensitive. Others have gone completely overboard trying not to offend anybody. Plus, the proper word or phrase changes too frequently. In my opinion, as long as you try your best not to offend someone, stay away from the obvious hurtful words, and chill out when someone makes an honest mistake it should be ok.

A gentle reminder of the word or phrase you prefer is ok too, but keep in mind that your word might not fit everyone. Also note that any word can hurt if used in hate. It's really more about semantics than words.

A previous co-worker's young child once said something that I found very amusing. Why do white people call us colored she asked, when they turn red when they are mad, pale when they are sick or blue when they are cold? I love the way children think!

Racism on the Flip Side

I'm against discrimination and racism in any form and I often speak out about it. But I'm not only an activist - I'm frequently a victim and I've dealt with these situations my entire life. I guess it's because I'm often found in places that people like me usually are not.

I grew up on an Indian Reservation and was the only full blood white male in my graduating class. I endured a lot of situations and name calling that some of my younger sisters were not able to tolerate. For me I think it was a good learning experience. But that was years ago and I no longer live there.

My current situation is worse - because we are now adults. You see I am a gay man who happens to be mostly attracted to black men. I also go to gay hip hop clubs because I love the music and of course I like the guys that go there. Most of the guys in those clubs don't speak to me because they are interested in other black men and that is fine. But occasionally I will run into someone I've met previously in another setting - some of them I've known for a while. But when they see me in the club they want to act like they don't know me. I guess it's sort of "un-cool" to be associated with the white guy in a mostly black club. I do have a problem with that. I usually try to find a way to point it out to the person later on, which they usually deny. But it has happened so frequently to me that I know it is real and not imagined.

It's sad to me that people who have also dealt with racism and discrimination their whole lives would take part in it themselves. We ALL need to get past this and I urge people to speak out when they see things like this happening. Bringing it to the surface makes people think and could possibly bring about change.

Cliche Phrases I Try to Live By

  • Today is the first day of the rest of your life
  • Live life to the fullest
  • All things in moderation (it's not a contradiction to the one above)
  • Take nothing but pictures - Leave nothing but footprints
  • Waste not - Want not
  • What comes around - goes around
  • Beauty is in the eye of the beholder
  • Love thy neighbor
  • Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today (unless it's a sunny beach day)
  • A sunny beach day takes all the work away (ok - I made that one up)

And occasionally:

  • Eat, Drink and be Mary (it's not a typo)

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Put the Children First

I've said before that God works in mysterious ways. But sometimes its not really that mysterious and makes perfect sense - if we look at the situation with an unbiased mind.

Doesn't it seem probable that God created childless couples - both straight and gay - to take care of the children that are unwanted by other people? Why do people go to such extremes with fertility clinics etc. when there are so many children that need a good home? Everyone wants a child of their own and I think that is a bit selfish.

Furthermore, the adoption process in this country is overly complicated and slow. Nobody spends that much time interviewing teenagers or other married couples before they have a baby naturally. I agree care should be taken not to put a child in a situation that would be harmful, but the process should not be so strict and lengthy. Each day a child spends without a loving home makes a negative impact on that little life.

Finally, not only should gays be allowed to marry like every other citizen of this country, they should be allowed to legally adopt children if they qualify. And those qualifications should be exactly the same as any other person or couple who is trying to adopt. I personally know several gay couples that have raised children as foster parents from infancy to young adults. Those children are well balanced, intelligent, and no different than children raised by straight parents. Yet I live in one of those backward states (Florida) that could remove those children from their foster parents at any time. That is not only unfair - it's cruel.

We need to think about the children and put them first - not our own selfish desires or political or religious hang-ups.

Patriot Act BS

The White House is twisting reality around again to promote their agenda. I'm referring to the current debate over the Patriot Act.

I would like to remind my gentle readers that numerous probes and inquiry's have proven that there was no lack of information that lead up to the 9/11 attack. There were plenty of clues. The problem was the lack of communication between various Government agencies - through several Administrations. We need to resolve those communication gaps in order to prevent another tragedy.

The Patriot Act, on the other hand, does not rest well with me. Personally, I have always been the type of person that has nothing to hide. But the provisions of the Patriot Act are seriously invading a person's right to privacy. And what will they do with all this personal information? I can only imagine it will somehow help big business pad their bottom line. This administration has used 9/11 as an excuse for many political gains and I think the Patriot Act is just another example.

The Government does not have the right to know every detail of our lives. And despite our seriously off balance administration, I hope our good Politicians can recognize that fact and edit the Patriot Act into a useful but non-intrusive article.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Happy 2006!

I can tell it's a new year - not because I woke with a headache or flipped the calendar - the evidence is at the gym. I hate going to the gym right after New Years. It was packed today with people who had clearly made resolutions to get back in shape. Sadly I know that in a couple of weeks I won't be waiting for machines anymore.

I applaud those that made a resolution to get back into shape, I only wish people would stick with it. Having done a little traveling to other countries, I can report that Americans are by far the most out of shape. In my opinion there is nothing more important than taking care of your body - you simply can not live without it.

Good health should not be a resolution that fades after a couple of weeks - it should be a lifetime commitment. However, a resolution is a good place to start and for those who may read this with that resolution in mind, I wish you a lifetime of good health. If you can stick with it regularly (that is the key) for at least a month, you will more than likely be hooked.

I wish everyone a Blessed, Happy and Healthy 2006!