Saturday, June 24, 2023

The illegitimate Supreme Court needs to be reformed immediately

Back to the Crooked Court.  AP notes:

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito accepted a 2008 trip to a luxury fishing lodge in Alaska from two wealthy Republican donors, one of whom repeatedly had interests before the court, and he did not disclose the trips on his financial disclosure for that year, ProPublica reports.

A story published Wednesday by the nonprofit investigative journalism organization states that in July 2008, Alito flew to a remote corner of Alaska aboard the private plane of businessman and Republican donor Paul Singer. A hedge fund founded by the billionaire has brought roughly a dozen cases before the court since then, ProPublica reported. Alito did not recuse himself from participating in any of those cases.

Now that we're on the same page, Sam Janesch (BALTIMORE SUN) notes:

U.S. Rep. Jamie Raskin thinks it’s time to expand the U.S. Supreme Court.

A constitutional law scholar and Montgomery County Democrat who is considering joining the race for U.S. Senate in Maryland, Raskin said Tuesday he believes the court has lost its legitimacy through a series of conservative appointments, decisions and scandals — and that the only way to fix it is by adding more members to its ranks.

“We need to make some dramatic changes,” Raskin said outside the Chevy Chase Library alongside reproductive rights advocates just days before the one-year anniversary of the court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Raskin co-sponsored a bill last month that would increase the number of justices on the nation’s highest court from nine to 13, an idea that gained momentum among progressives when the court’s conservative majority increased under former President Donald Trump.

Supporters of that bill, called the Judiciary Act of 2023, argue Congress has increased the size of the court several times in the nation’s history — the last time being in 1869 — and should do so again. They cite declining public confidence in the court stemming from decisions like Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health last year and ethics controversies like recent reports that conservative Justice Clarence Thomas accepted tens of thousands of dollars worth of gifts from a Republican donor.

We need that and we need it now.  We need reform and we can't wait for it.  People's lives are at stake.  LAW & CRIME notes:

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas led a 6-3 majority Thursday in ruling that a man’s legal innocence is not a basis for allowing him to petition for habeas corpus relief.

The legal community reacted to the ruling in Jones v. Hendrix with disdain, with some calling the ruling “an outright tragedy.”

Attorney Matthew Segal tweeted a summary of the ruling’s effect: “To be clear: this opinion means that when *the courts* misinterpret a statute and cause someone to be wrongly convicted or sentenced, that person is out of luck when the courts later realize their mistake.”

The underlying facts involve interplay among multiple federal statutes and a Supreme Court ruling that created new rules for interpretation.

Marcus DeAngelo Jones was convicted in 2000 of possessing a firearm as a felon in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). After Jones was convicted, he appealed and lost several times. An unrelated ruling by the Supreme Court in 2019 in Rehaif v. United States, however, changed the interpretation of § 922(g)(1) such that Jones would no longer be guilty under the law.

Jones challenged his conviction with a claim of “legal innocence” — a defense based on an erroneous interpretation of a criminal law — as opposed to “factual innocence,” or a defense based on an error in determining what a defendant did.

Legal innocence claims are relatively rare. Indeed, during oral arguments in the case, when Justice Samuel Alito raised concerns about inmates of all manner revisiting their convictions with legal innocence claims under § 922(g)(1), Deputy Solicitor General Eric Feigin told Alito that Jones’ case would constitute “probably a category of one.”

Jones’ legal innocence claim led to a seemingly illogical outcome related to timing.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit rejected Jones’ habeas corpus petition on the basis that Jones should have raised his claim at an earlier proceeding. However, at the time of the earlier proceeding, the Supreme Court had not yet ruled in the 2019 case. As a result, Jones would not yet have had a valid claim of legal innocence at the phase the 8th Circuit demanded.

On appeal to the justices, Jones argued that even if the federal habeas corpus statute doesn’t allow him to bring a legal innocence claim, a different federal post-conviction relief statute creates a kind of safety valve which does. As Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson explained in her dissent: “Where a federal prisoner could have brought a particular habeas claim prior to 1948, but could not bring such a claim in a §2255 petition after that date, the saving clause kicks in to permit that individual to resort to habeas to raise that claim.”

We are talking about people's lives here.  We must have reform with the Supreme Court.  I argue for us to pack the Court and do so right now.

And we can't trust the Court to reform itself.  Giulia Carbonaro (NEWSWEEK) reports:

The revelation that Amy Coney Barrett sold her private residence to a member of a religious group shortly after being sworn in at the Supreme Court has raised questions about the conservative justice and the high court, whose transparency and ethics have recently been scrutinized.

Barrett had personal ties with the University of Notre Dame's Religious Liberty Initiative, according to a CNN report. The group, "informed by the Catholic tradition" of the college says it aims to "promote religious freedom for all people," according to its website.

Newsweek has contacted the Supreme Court for comment by email.

The group has been found to forge ties with justices to gain favor with the court, including paying for Justice Samuel Alito to travel to Rome to deliver a speech after the overturning of Roe v. Wade last year. The group's legal clinic has filed a series of "friend-of-the-court" briefs in religious liberty cases before the Supreme Court since it was founded in 2020—many of which Alito supported.

Reform now.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):

Friday, June 23, 2023.  The Senate Judiciary Committee is informed:  "Our nation is greater than hate --and we must act now to end this emergency and secure equality for every American, without exception," Riley Gaines repeats a creative lie and Glenneth Greenwald and the rest of the transphobes repeat it as fact,  Briahna Joy Gray flirts online during an interview with no one's idea of a stud Chris Hedges, and much more.

Harleigh Walker:  Thank you for the opportunity to tell you more about myself and what it is like to be a transgender person. My name is Harleigh; my pronouns are she/her; I’m 16 years old, and I am from Alabama. I’m hoping to be able to share with you what my journey has been like and to clear up some of the false information that I’ve heard come out of Congress and state legislatures, including the Alabama legislature. There has been so much misinformation shared around what it means to be a transgender person, and what healthcare looks like for transgender youth like me. Most of what I’ve been hearing is inaccurate at best, or just outright falsehoods and misrepresentations about the healthcare given to transgender youth by qualified medical professionals. The laws preventing people like me from having access to the health care that our doctors and parents agree is necessary to keep us healthy don’t keep us safe; they do the opposite. The horrible things we hear from legislators at the state and federal levels put us at greater risk because of bullying and dangerous harassment. Transgender people deserve to be able to pursue happiness - and I am happy.

Growing up, I had a really great childhood, loving parents, a wonderful big brother, loving grandparents, and friends. As I grew, I just felt like something was different for me, and when I was between ten and eleven years old, I told my parents that I was transgender. No one pushed me to become transgender. No one suggested, forced, or influenced me to “choose” to be transgender. It is not a choice. I just knew that this is who I am.

My parents did the absolute best they could to love and support me, and they took me to our pediatrician. He sat down with my parents and me and referred us to medical professionals in our state that could best treat me. He never once “pushed an agenda” onto me. Instead, he listened to me, his patient, and advised all of us on how I could get the best healthcare for my situation. I remember going on the first trip to the specialists - we were all so incredibly nervous - and the team of doctors we saw were incredible. It wasn’t a single doctor but a group of doctors who were there to help me in whatever way they could. One of the falsehoods I hear all the time out of those who would keep me from getting my healthcare is that these doctors pressure or rush you, and they pull you in and start filling you full of hormones, puberty blockers or wanting to surgeries - and I want to tell you that none of that happened. As a matter of fact, these doctors advised us that at no point would they talk about any surgeries on a minor; it wasn’t even something they would discuss. Instead they spent time getting to know me, understanding my specific case, getting to know my parents, and figuring out how to best care for me, personally, as a patient. Not only did they never push me, but instead, one of the things that stuck out as they talked to my parents and me was that if I ever decided to stop, or if this care wasn’t right for me, it was ok, and they would support me on that, too. This is the opposite of what I hear in the news or in the legislatures. It makes me wonder why legislatures think they should get to tell my parents and my doctors that I can’t get the care I need to be healthy and happy.
I want you to understand something really important. I want all of you to look at me, here and now, and hear my words. I am a VERY happy 16-year-old. I have wonderful friends who accept me fully for who I am. I’m active in my school’s debate team and other extracurricular activities. I love to travel. I enjoy concerts and music like Taylor Swift, and listening to my record collection way too loud in my room. I get As in school and I'm looking forward to college. I am not miserable in my life, I’m not depressed. I’m just trying to be a teenager in America. Same as any other teen, but I keep having to jump through hoops that other people my age don’t have to. I have had to spend spring break lobbying for my right to exist while my friends are on vacation. I’m here in front of this Committee instead of enjoying summer vacation, just to try and ensure that my right to exist isn’t taken away.
I also hear so many lawmakers saying they are writing and passing these laws to protect kids, yet, in my home state, when these laws were being proposed, not one lawmaker was willing to sit down with my dad or me to talk through it, so that we could better explain what this looked like, what it meant to us. From our State Senate, House of Representatives and even our Governor, we begged and pleaded for an audience - but those writing these laws absolutely refused to meet with us. Instead, these lawmakers pushed rhetoric and laws that weren’t true and were unfounded, including that transgender people are being “groomed” by our parents, which is nonsense!. In support of these laws my Governor has decided to say horrible things about me and those like me in my state. I would love for you to imagine for a moment if these statements were made about you or your kids, how would this make you feel? What would you do to protect your kids from these harmful laws and statements? If you were me, would you want to stay in a state where the people who are supposed to make sure you have a safe place to live instead talk about you and your family this way? I live only a few miles from the best college in my state, but I can’t really even consider going there in this climate, because of the continued attacks against me.
As I’m looking forward to college though, I have had to rethink where I might go. Alabama was one of the first states to ban my healthcare, but because of the new laws that have been passed in states across the nation blocking my ability to just be who I am, and because we don’t have the Equality Act to help protect me from discrimination,I’ve had to start looking at colleges very far away from where I was born and raised, away from family and friends. My parents say this breaks their heart; they can’t stand the thought of their kid being so far away from them where it would be tough for them to help me If I needed them.
This type of discrimination, which will make me have to move where I live or work or go to school, is not designed to protect or help me. It is really designed to do two things: one, keep me from being who I am and being successful; and two, to use transgender people as scapegoats for increased political capital. I’m here today to tell anyone who would support that to look out; you will not stop me from being who I am or obtaining my goals, and I will not be used as a political pawn.
I also want you to understand that discrimination makes me unsafe. This journey isn’t easy; as I first began my transition, there was an incredible amount of bullying in my middle school. So much so, that at one point my parents decided I needed to go to online school, not because I wanted to but because the bullying got so bad that it was getting close to physical violence, and the school refused to help. I hated online school - I love being around people, and I learn best in a school environment. The next year, I went back into my old school, and, though there was still bullying, we worked with the school to make sure they knew they couldn’t shrug their shoulders anymore. For me, it never escalated to physical violence but that was just lucky. Kids shouldn’t feel helpless at school against being bullied or discriminated against just because they are different - this is another way that The Equality Act could really help. Leaders in our state and country have the ability to help, but instead so many legislators have decided to promote bullying and discrimination.
Despite all this, despite being called a demon, a monster, or other despicable things, I love my life, I love my family, I love my friends and I’m happy. I am asking for you to help us stop certain people from using the transgender community as a political pawn. Please stop attacking our lives for votes or money. These are our human rights hanging in the balance. Help us communicate that they are impacting people’s lives and our “pursuit of happiness.” We’re not people to be feared or villains. We are just like your kid, your neighbor, and you. We also deserve the ability to be happy.

Harleigh Walker appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday for a hearing entitled "Protecting Pride: Defending the Civil Rights of LGBTQ+ Americans."

That's what a 16-year-old girl had to say. This week.

Transphobe Glenneth Greenwald avoided an actual trans voice.  But he did want you to know what Renee Richards now thinks.  I'm sorry, who gives a damn?  It's not 1976.  It's 2023.  Renee had the microphone for years and spoke to her day.  Her day is done.  You'd think Glenneth of all people would grasp how you age out.  He's also wanting you to know that long-retired Martina Navratilova doesn't approve of trans women playing tennis with non-trans women.  I care even less what Chris Everet says.  That would be Chris who didn't realize Dusty Springfield was a lesbian and made a point of telling Dusty that they really needed to get lesbians out of tennis.  Oh, Chrissie, between your ex Jimmy Connors outing you on the abortion and now we're addressing the issue of your homophobia, you really are destroying you own image.  

For those who don't know, singer Dusty Springfield was a huge tennis fan.  She was also a lesbian.  She never respected Chrissie after that and would share that story with anyone who would listen.  She also went all in on cheering on Billie Jean King.  Chrissie's homophobia was well known and it's part of the reason that players like Billie Jean felt they had to stay in the closet.

Sensing the possibility of media attention, Glenneth sets aside his widow weeds, pushes his two children out of the way and goes running for his close up.   To show the world that he's covered in s**t like any lying sack of s**t he reTweets:

Dem witness: "There's been this news article about men that think they can beat Serena Williams in tennis. And it's just not the case. She is stronger than them." @Riley_Gaines_: "Both Serena and Venus lost to the 203rd ranked male tennis player."

That's the first 'coverage' that I've read on the hearing.  When Riley lied at the hearing, I just shook my head.  I thought we all had brains and that the problem with that lie would be obvious.

I don't claim to know sports.  I've got 101 real things to focus on.  But the Williams sisters?  I thought we all knew their story.  They aren't 'sports stars,' they're so huge they're just stars.  Their legend has gone far beyond sports fans.

Again, I caught Riley's lie immediately in the hearing and thought -- since I'm not a sports fan -- that everyone else would as well.  

But, no, idiots are spreading her lie.  'It's proof!'  It's proof that you're stupid and that Riley outsmarted you  with a lie.

What's wrong with that 'fact'?

Like most right-wing garbage, it takes a factual event and leaves out all the facts that would undermine the case hate merchants are trying to make if the actual story were told.

Serena and Venus were adults?  No, they were children when this happened.

Reality:  An adult male beat two teenage girls -- not women, girls. 

I saw it, why didn't Glenneth?  So let's go to WIKIPEDIA because, as I remember the story, Serena as a teenager was not yet the great Serena that she became.  Oh, look, even sports idiot me got that correct:

In 1995, just after turning 14, Williams planned to make her professional debut as a wild-card entry in the Bank of the West Classic in Oakland, California, but was denied by the WTA owing to their age-eligibility restrictions.[45] She subsequently filed an antitrust lawsuit against the women's tour, but withdrew it at her parents' request.[45] Her first professional event was in October 1995 at the Bell Challenge in Quebec,[44][46] where she used a wild-card entry to circumvent age-eligibility rules.[44] She lost in the first qualifying round to then 18-year-old American Annie Miller, winning just two games.[47]

Williams did not play a tournament in 1996. The next year, she lost in the qualifying rounds of three tournaments,[48] before winning her first main-draw match in November at the Ameritech Cup Chicago.[49] Ranked No. 304, she upset No. 7 Mary Pierce, and No. 4 Monica Seles,[50][51] recording her first career wins over top 10 players and becoming the lowest-ranked player in the Open Era to defeat two top-10 opponents in one tournament.[1] She ultimately lost in the semifinals to No. 5 Lindsay Davenport.[52] She finished 1997 ranked No. 99.[53]

Williams began 1998 at the Medibank International Sydney.[54] As a qualifier ranked No. 96,[55] she defeated No. 3 Davenport in the quarterfinals,[55] before losing to Arantxa Sánchez Vicario in the semifinals.[56] Williams made her debut in the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament at the Australian Open,[57] where she defeated sixth-seeded Irina Spîrlea in the first round,[58] before losing to her sister, Venus, in the second round in the sisters' first professional match.[58][54] She reached six other quarterfinals during the year, but lost all of them,[59] including her first match against No. 1-ranked Martina Hingis at the Lipton International Players Championships in Key Biscayne,[60] and her second match against Venus at the Italian Open in Rome.[59] She failed to reach the quarterfinals of any Grand Slam tournament the remainder of the year,[citation needed] losing in the fourth round of the French Open to Arantxa Sánchez Vicario,[61] and the third round of the US Open to Spîrlea.[62] She withdrew from Wimbledon two games into a match with Virginia Ruano Pascual, after straining a calf muscle during the first set.[63] She did win the mixed doubles titles at Wimbledon and the US Open with Max Mirnyi, completing the Williams family's sweep of the 1998 mixed doubles Grand Slam tournaments. She won her first professional title in doubles at the U.S. National Indoor Championships in Oklahoma City with Venus, becoming the third pair of sisters to win a WTA title.[1] They won two more doubles titles that year. Williams finished the year ranked No. 20 in singles.

The year that Serena and Venus were both beaten in tennis by the same man?  1998.  They were not the champions they would become.  They were two 16-year-old girls just starting their tennis careers.  She  began that year ranked number 96.  

Not quite the way Riley and Glenneth try to spin it. 

Repeating, a 16-year-old girl went before Congress this week and told her story.

Glenneth wasn't interested in that.  No.  He was interested in three elderly women (Chris, Martina and Renee) who really have no skin in the game, they're more likely to be found looking for plots at Forest Lawn Memorial Parks than setting foot on a court at Forest Hills.

A 16-year-old had the guts to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee at a time when a war on transpeople is taking place and Glenneth ignores her to reTweet lies and offering the thoughts of, for example, an 88-year-old woman who really has no skin in the game and probably, let's be honest, very shaky cognitive knowledge of the world today.

Yesterday, we covered the liars who appeared before the committee --Riley Gaines and Matt Sharp.  Today, we're covering the other three witnesses -- you know, people actually qualified to speak to what's going on today: Harleigh, the Human Rights Campaign's Kelley Robinson and pediatric endocrinologist Dr Ximena Lopez.

Senator Dick Durbin is the Chair of the Committee.

We've noted here repeatedly that FOX "NEWS" traffics in hate and that they run with freak show people to scare Americans.  That's especially true of their war on trans people.  As we've noted, they repeatedly bring on the White British man -- who lives in London -- to try to prove points regarding trans people.  The freak show is a White man who spent a fortune to look like an Asian man, he had his face redone to look like the K-Pop singer he was obsessed with.  That was long before he briefly decided he was trans.  The last time we mentioned that, FOX "NEWS" trotted him back out yet again.  They love to do that.  It's got nothing to do with the US or what we're experiencing.  

Durbin made a point to note that when a Supreme Court nominee appears before the Judiciary Committee, they will always be asked about what laws would influence them the most ("whether or not they're going to be influenced by foreign laws") and that the answer the Committee always wants, expects and receives is "US law."  

Chair Dick Durbin:  The answer they're waiting for is, "I stick with America."  And now we have references to Europe as the standard-bearer in terms of where America should go for it's future.  Secondly, if we're called an outlier in that headline [that a Republican wanted noted], guilty as charged.  America's always been an outlier. A written Constitution for over two hundred years.  A Bill of Rights that people can depend upon. We are outliers.  No one in Europe can make the same claim.  So I would just start with the premise, I love Europe, I love Europeans, but we're Americans.  And when it comes to the decisions as basic as the rights of our individual citizens and freedoms, I think we've got a pretty good starting point with the Constitution and Bill of Rights.  I want to ask you, Dr Lopez, there have been references made here to whether or not your profession and what you've done with your life for the last ten years is an outlier itself.  That in fact you're not doing what is mainstream medicine in America.  How do you respond to that?

Dr Ximena Lopez: That is not true.  The type of care that I provide, gender affirming care, is the mainstream standard of care, best practice recommended by all the legitimate medical societies in the United States and across the world.  And, as I said in my opening statement, we have a clinical experience of more than twenty years and a robust body of evidence that supports this treatment as life saving, decreasing depression and anxiety.  There are no other studies that support any other treatment.  So this --

Chair Dick Durbin: And --

Dr Ximena Lopez (Con't): -- is the mainstream treatment.

Chair Dick Durbin:  And accepted by the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics as well?

Dr Ximena Lopez: Correct.

Chair Dick Durbin: Is there any major medical profession organization in the United States of America that opposes this medical form of care?

Dr Ximena Lopez: No.

Chair Dick Durbin: That speaks for itself.  We're talking about science and medicine versus a political spin on the issue.  I want to say that I am old enough to remember the debate on The Equal Rights Amendment  fifty years ago -- the fears [that] 'If we pass the Equal Rights Amendment, women will be serving in combat.'  You know what?  Women are serving in combat because they want to serve in combat and we need them.  'If we pass The Equal Rights Amendment, we're going to have men and women sharing the same bathrooms.'  Have you been to restaurants with all gender bathrooms?  I've seen them quite frequently in Chicago and I'm sure you've seen them too.  When I listen to Ms. Gaines, I think, "There's a fundamental call for justice in your statement,'' I understand it.  We've got to be able to work that out as a nation.  And not at the expense of Harleigh Walker and her future.  There has to be a middle ground here that is fair to both.  As far as I am concerned, that's our job on this side of the table to deal with that moving forward.  Dr Lopez, you said, and I want to make sure it's on the record clearly, that accepted medical practices in the field does not provide for surgery for youth.  Is that correct? 

Dr Ximena Lopez: There-there. Genital surgery is not recommended for minors.  That is the standard of care. 

Chair Dick Durbin: And, in terms of hormone therapy, it's not administered until after puberty?

Dr Ximena Lopez: That is -- that is recommended in adolescence.

Chair Dick Durbin:  And if you went forward with any surgery at any point, or even medications that we're talking about, has it been your practice to involve the parents of the young person involved?

Dr Ximena Lopez: That is the standard of care.  Parents, all legal guardians, parents have to consent to the treatment.  That's part of the medical decision making to involve the parents and discuss the risks and benefits like with any type of medical treatment.  And, at the end of the day, it is the parents that consent to the treatment. 

Chair Dick Durbin: Ms. Robinson, you've noted the resurgence, if you will, of anti-LGBTQ legislation across the country.  A lot of it is focused on the transgender issue but not exclusively when we look at the body of legislation.  What else is coming up in the state legislature that concerns you?

Kelley Robinson: I mean, we're concerned about bathroom bills re-emerging.  Not moving forward explicit non-discrimination protections for communities and so much more.  And for me, what's even more concerning is the violent rhetoric that surrounds every introduction of a bill, I mean, it's contribution to the fact that one-in-five of every hate crime is now motivated by anti-LGBTQ+ bias.  This is an urgent problem facing our community and creating fear and isolation even when the bills aren't passed into law.

Chair Dick Durbin: Thank you.

Let's note this exchange.

Senator Chris Coons:  Let me talk initially to Ms. Walker, if I could, thank you.  As a parent of three children myself, I can only imagine how proud your parents must be of your poise and your advocacy.  And thank you for sharing with us that you're a straight-A student and participating in school and happy. It is a very difficult thing to insert yourself into these very heated debates in your home state of Alabama and nationally.  And I could feel your frustration, explaining that as you search for college, you feel you can no longer safely do so in your home state.  I just don't think that's right and I think someday soon we may be in a place where young people can search out their college dreams without having to worry about whether they're in a state that affirms them or not.  You mention something about this is not an ideology that's been pushed on you.  Could you just help us for a moment understand?  You describe consulting closely with your parents, then with your physician to make a decision about your future that reflects who you are and how you were created.  Can you just help us understand that a little bit further, Ms. Walker?

Harleigh Walker: Yeah.  So, like I said, whenever I was about 11-years-old, I was doing research on LGBTQ community and I came across the term "transgender." And, growing up as a kid, I always knew that I was different.  And so I came to my parents with -- saying that I think I am transgender.  And, at first, we didn't really know what that meant.  We weren't super educated on the issue because, you know, at that time it wasn't a big public issue.  And so whenever we went to our doctors, they were all incredibly supportive and they never were telling me what I should do.  The entire first couple of visits were just listening to me, listening to my story, who I was and what I thought was best for me and what they could do to help me.  It wasn't, "You need to stop these puberty blockers immediately."  It wasn't, "You have to do all of this to identify as transgender."  Because everybody's journey is different. And they just wanted to do what was best for me.  And they listened to me to make sure that is what I wanted to do.

Senator Chris Coons: Thank you. Dr Lopez, one of the things you mentioned was the importance of close consultations with parents in making a decision about gender affirming care.  Could you just briefly speak to the role that parents play in your practice making any decision about gender affirming care for their children?

Dr Ximena Lopez: The decision to start gender affirming care is a highly complex decision.  It's not easy for any parent from any background.  Most parents are not well informed when this happens to them.  And it takes a lot of time and effort to meet with different types of professionals and the health providers and physicians to discuss risks and benefits and potential alternatives which is what should be done for any type of medical treatment.

Senator Chris Coons: And what sort of impact do you see on the mental and physical health on your patients in a state where there is a ban imposed on that sort of care? Or on books or on discussions in school?  Does that have any impact whatsoever? 

Dr Ximena Lopez: I am very, very worried.  That is the reason that I am here. I am here because I am very worried for the mental health of my patients.  

Senator Chris Coons: Mmm-hmm.

Dr Ximena Lopez: The ones that I see in my clinic who are supported by their parents and are receiveding gender affirming care are thriving and, if that is taken away from them, I am sure their mental health will worsen --  not only because the treatment that helps them is taken away but also because there's a -- there's a feeling of stigma and discrimination that has been created around them and, as I say, they're-they're debating whether to leave [the state] or hide.  And it's really -- it's really devastating. 

Senator Chris Coons: Mr. Sharp, if I might, in your written testimony, you criticize schools for trying to replace parents as the ultimate determents of what's best for their children when it comes to things like teaching about LGBTQ rights and issues but, if I understand you correctly from your spoken testimony, you also think parents should be barred from making medical care decisions about their own children in the case of gender affirming care as described by Dr Lopez.  Which one is it?  Are parents in charge of what's in the best interests of their children or not?

Matt Sharp: Thank you, Senator.  We do support the right of parents.  But our laws have long recognized that there are limits to those and parents can't consent to things that can be damaging and harmful --

Stop.  We're done with him.  I don't have time for liars.  He's a hack when it comes to the law.  We have better things to do.  You, as a parent, can ask for any legal medical care for your child or refuse it on behalf of your child.  The only legal exception thus far has been is if you refuse care that is considered life sustaining -- meaning, if you refuse medical care that could save your child's life, you can be held liable for the child's death in a court of law.  

I don't know how these people think they can get away with lying in an open hearing.  But Riley thought she could get away with lying regarding Venus and Serena and clearly she did because the lie was posted as truth by Glenneth Greenwald.

And for the record, he said "right" not "rights."  That's not a typo.  He said, "We do support the right of parents."  Right.

Senator Chris Coons: Dr Lopez, if I might, just in conclusion, your testimony was that the American Medical Association and the American Association of Pediatrics both support gender affirming care as an option for children and their parents to choose in consultation with physicians.  Is that correct?

Dr Ximena Lopez: That is correct.

Senator Chris Coons: And how do you reconcile with what Mr Sharp just said about the EU with our national, medical associations that are relevant to this care?

Dr Ximena Lopez: First of all, no country in Europe has banned gender affirming care.  They have taken steps to make sure that there is a cautious approach when deciding eligibility for gender affirming care and, actually, the steps they have taken are very similar to what is the standard of care practices that is recommended by the Endocrine Society and The WPATH [The World Professional Association for Transgender Health] which does recommend very careful, comprehensive, lengthy assessment before deciding that this is the best care for the patients and there is no single research study that shows that psychological therapy as mentioned by [spokesperson] Sharp is enough to resolve gender dysphoria and mental health issues that transgender people can have. 


These are serious issues.  These issues were ignored by our so-called left yet again.  Now the hate merchants were not silent.  They took Riley Gaines' nonsense story that has you picturing strong, seasoned, champion-women Serena and Venus taking on a man and losing due to their gender when in fact, they were still developing 16-year-old girls with Serena having been the 99th ranked female competitor the year immediately prior.  Serious issues.

Kelley Robinson:  Recently, and for the first time in our nearly half-century history, HRC has declared a national state of emergency for LGBTQ+ people in the United States. Our emergency declaration is neither exaggeration nor dramatization, but a sober reflection of the dire circumstances faced by the LGBTQ+ community. It follows an unprecedented spike in anti-LGBTQ+ legislative assaults and political extremism across our nation, which is resulting in a health and safety crisis for LGBTQ+ Americans and causing countless families to reconsider whether they want to live and work in the states they call home.

In Missouri, where legislators filed more than a dozen anti-LGBTQ+ bills this year, Governor Mike Parson signed one bill that bans lifesaving, gender-affirming health care for transgender children and another that keeps those same children from playing sports with their friends. Danielle and her husband, who are the parents of a transgender child, have a thriving agriculture business in the state and aging parents who live nearby. Still, they have been weighing whether Missouri is a safe place for their son to grow up. Danielle told us, “It’s unfair that Missouri is making us choose between doing what two different generations of my family need to survive.” In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis doubled down on his “Don’t Say Gay” law when signing a slate of extreme anti-LGBTQ+ bills in May. Julia and Theresa, a married couple living in central Florida who just welcomed their first child, are now leaving the state. Julie, an elementary school teacher, worries about losing her job as an out lesbian educator. Theresa, a nurse, said, “There aren’t laws saying I can’t take care of my trans patients anymore, but this is Florida, so it’s probably just a matter of time.” The couple is actively applying for jobs in other states. In Texas, where Governor Greg Abbott signed legislation banning transgender young people from receiving the health care they need, some families have made the decision to flee the state—including a family whose son relied on the services he was provided at Texas Children’s Hospital, a single mother who is moving her child overseas, and another mother who told me, “We have accepted that this state is not safe. It is a warlike zone.”

In every corner of our country, there are parents and children, teachers and nurses, community leaders and small business owners who are afraid that the rise in legislative assaults and political extremism has put a target on their backs. LGBTQ+ people are living in fear, and such fear has no place in the United States of America.

Thus, we have declared this state of emergency. In addition, we have issued a guidebook to help LGBTQ+ Americans stay safe as they navigate these new anti-LGBTQ+ laws—whether they are deciding to move, planning a vacation, or searching for a new job. We have also compiled a report that details the impact of these laws for advocates, policymakers, and the media. I have submitted both into the record for your reference.

Although this is a state of emergency, I believe that we still live in a land of possibility and a nation that prides itself on progress. For every Missouri, there is a Minnesota, which recently passed a statewide ban on so-called “conversion therapy.” For every Florida, there is a Michigan, which recently became the 22nd state to make LGBTQ+ non-discrimination protections law. For every Texas, there is a Pennsylvania, which is on the cusp of becoming the 23rd. For every Defense of Marriage Act, there is a Respect for Marriage Act. And for every extremist, there are many more Americans who support LGBTQ+ rights.

Our nation is greater than hate -- and we must act now to end this emergency and secure equality for every American, without exception.

For every American, without exception.

I guess that's just too much for the faux left on YOUTUBE.  Where should we start because we're going to make a point and I'm winding down.  Let's do Bri-Bri.

Briahana Joy Gray.  You know her.  She's a co-host of RISING.  Remember them?  Remember when two of the hosts went to town on transgender people and it was left to Olayemi Olurin to call them out?  Now when Katie Halper got dropped (for calling out the inhumane treatment of Palestinians), Bri-Bri wondered if she should leave-leave.  But, hey, she's happy to sit right next to Robbie and giggle each day never being bothered by his  (continued) transphobic remarks.  So that tells you about Bri-Bri.  She was the press secretary on Bernie Sanders' last campaign.  Some might think she'd have a career but no Democratic Party candidate will touch her.  Has to do with the end of Sanders campaign.

So yesterday, she's giggling with Chris Hedges.  She's lying with him too -- and maybe we'll cover at THIRD -- because that's what they do, they stroke each other and lie for each other and pretend for each other and in their tiny bubble they appear to have influence as a result.   

Tired of Cornel West's clowning yet?  Greens are already grumbling about him being in the race.  And that was before Chris started his latest nonsense:

Now the Green -- I've had a long relationship with the Greens. It can be pretty dysfunctional as well.  It's got to really open its doors to a whole new generation of activists -- whether they do that or not, I don't know because it's -- some of these Green Parties are just a collection of like old cranks --

Bri interrupts to giggle and play with hair, smooth it out on both sides -- it should remind you of the following scene in  ABOUT LAST NIGHT.  

While she flirts, he finishes with "who want to put their name on the ballot to be governor or something."

So this is Chris Hedges.  An old crank himself.  Unless you just want to call him a prig.  And the fact that he lied on the front page of THE NEW YORK TIMES in an article 'reporting' Iraq was linked to 9/11 -- it was not linked, the story was garbage fed to Chrissy.  It was the first one to start that lie.  But that doesn't deter Chrissy or Bri-Bri.

So what he's doing is making fun of the Green Party.  He's mocking them.  And that should be enough.  He's the one who got Conrel the People's Party nomination and he and Cornel were supposed to run as a ticket but Chris' wife said no.  Chris then spent his time trying to strong arm the Green Party into gifting Cornel the nomination.  That did not happen and he's been a pissy little priss ever since.

But when he's knocking the Green Party, you may not be getting the back story.

"Rage Against The War Machine."  Remember that pathetic nonsense.  Small turn out.  That surprised them.  Because who wouldn't want to be onstage with a convicted pedophile like Scott Ritter and who wouldn't want to be among the many racists invited to the event and the homophobes?

Turns out most people didn't want to be.  And, in fact, the Green Party had to release a statement about that nonsense because lies were being spread that they were a part of the group.  They were not.

Chrissy Hedges was.  He spoke there.  He'll do anything for attention.  With that in mind, again, this is what he said to Bri:

Now the Green -- I've had a long relationship with the Greens. It can be pretty dysfunctional as well.  It's got to really open its doors to a whole new generation of activists -- whether they do that or not, I don't know because it's -- some of these Green Parties are just a collection of like old cranks --

Yep, he's trashing the party -- as Cornel's spokesperson -- and he's also complaining about the fact that the Green Party actually has ethics and doesn't get on stage with registered sex offenders and Nazis and other hate merchants.  Chrissy thinks they need to get with the program.

Outside her tiny bubble, people are looking at Bri-Bri with a side eye.  Can she get more embarrassing?  That's the YOUTUBE world for you.  They'll bring on an exposed serial plagiarist and treat him as a genius.  In "Media: How can you trust a journalist today?," Ava and I asked that basic question and kicked off with the issue of Chrissy Hedges:

This month, we saw a journalist 'report' on Cornel West's run for president on The People's Party's ticket.  Yes, that story did implode in a matter of days.  That's not what bothered us.  What bothered us was when Cornel switched over to the Green Party and decided to share (see this Iraq snapshot) that he was encouraged to take the nomination.  It wasn't his fault, you see.  He explained on camera that Chris Hedges talked him into it, Chris Hedges promoted the party to him, Chris Hedges was going to be his People's Party running mate but then Chris Hedges' wife put her foot down that he wasn't running.


Remember that journalist who reported on Cornel being the candidate for The People's Party?  It was Chris Hedges.  And in his 'zany' column for SCHEER POST, the serial plagiarist left out all of those details. Chris portrayed himself as a friend of Cornel's interviewing him during a car ride.  He left out the fact that he was the one who pushed the nomination -- both on Cornel and on The People's Party -- and that he was supposed to have announced he was Cornel's running mate.


How do you trust a liar like that?  You really can't.


And the media is full of Chris Hedges-like 'journalists' who just lie over and over. 

We really don't want to dive back in to Chris' sewer.  

The following sites updated:

Thursday, June 22, 2023

That's it! We're turning the car around!

written by Betty, Cedric, ElaineRebecca, Ruth, Wally, Ava and C.I

Poor sport and loser Riley Gaines took her foot stomping whine fest to the Senate on Wednesday.  She wants the world to know that she is just suffering so and her life might be different if she had a scholarship and, boo-hoo, life was never fair to her (those who've seen her face would agree).  It's this, it's that.  It's a never-ending whine that goes on for years and years and years about how this could have happened or that could have happened.  By golly, she could have been somebody!

Yes, Riley, and if every other US swimmer dropped dead tomorrow,  you might have a shot at making it to the Olympics.  

Well . . . 

At warming a bench at the Olympics while others compete. 

Her poor sport and cry baby attitude requires that we review a few basics -- warning, we have our parent faces on -- our serious parent faces on.  Go ahead, gather round.

Public school, K-12: you are not promised anything with regards to sports and school and if sports at public schools are going to be this divisive then federal funds do not have to go to your athletics.

Taxpayers do not have to pay for your sports.

We have to pay for a child's education -- and should -- but we do  not have to pay for sports.  "B-b-b-but physical education?"  P.E. can be done with jazzercise or with kickball games or by walking laps around a track or by any other number of ways.  There is no guarantee that you will go to school and play on a team or do a solo competitive sport.

Riley Gaines does not want to share.  It is invading her space, she whines in that annoying and insufferable voice.  


Then let's just pull it all, pull all the damn funding.

If you  see your kids griping and yelling at each other over some game or toy, what do you do?  You pull it from them and tell them if they cannot play nice, they do not have to play at all.

If it is just too much for Riley Gaines and other crybabies to  handle and they refuse to conduct themselves appropriately, pull sports funding.

They can do p.e. activities.  

Then what happens?  

If you have sports, then you privatize youth sports.

This would mean females would suffer, yes.  You better believe that communities will pony up private funds and donations to have a boys' football team.  After that, in the United States, every other sport is at risk.    Are you behaving this way because that's what you want?  Because that's what you could get.  

Leave it up to local communities on whether they want to fund raise for/dig into their own pockets to have this sport or that sport.

If you cannot play nice, you do not deserve to have America pay for you to play at all.  

Again, people can walk for a P.E. course, they can lift weights for P.E., they can play kick ball -- there are any number of activities that they can do.  And should do if all they are going to do is whine and, worse, act entitled.  

For the record, no one ever said  you deserved -- or were owed or promised -- a scholarship to an educational institution.  Do you not grasp that?  It is nowhere to be found in the Bill of Rights or the Constitution. 

 College is an educational institution.  

"B-b-b-but, no fair, I worked so hard!"

No, you didn't.  You played a game or swam or did some activity that you liked.  That really is not "hard work"  in terms of an education.  

You are not owed anything and this misguided belief that your are is really out of control.

So the answer may be:  No taxpayer money for public school sports.  None.  Zero.   If groups want to have sports, they can fund raise for them and, since they are the ones doing the fundraising, they can do whatever they want.  

"What will we do?"

You will get P.E. classes and that is it.  A robust public education does not require any sports teams.

It only takes one bad apple, as the saying goes.  That would be Riley Gaines.  She does not want to play nice.  We do not want to be extorted. 

She has done real damage with her 'testimony' -- including 'testifying'  about things she was not present for but 'knows' happened.  

Maybe she spent too much on sports when she should have focused on learning?

She didn't 'testify.'  The word for what she offered was -- see if you can get it right --  hearsay.  It's not a new word.  It's not a new application of the word.   

In the future, it would be good if Congressional committees would remind witnesses to confine themselves to sharing what they actually saw or, you know, witnessed -- hence the term "witness."

Riley has portrayed adult women as ready-to-grasp-the-vapors over a glimpse of genitalia -- as being weaker than ten Lindsay Graham's combined.  Ten!  Riley's convinced that men are going to pretend to be trans women so that they can sneak some peaks and maybe get a little locker room action.  We think she's seen too many AMERICAN PIE movies.  

If she is right and women are as damn weak and pathetic as she portrays them to be, guess that means all Seth MacFarlane's insulting remarks about women's sports (especially basketball) in one episode after another of FAMILY GUY must be true.

We didn't realize that those competing in sports were so delicate and fragile.  Now that we do realize it, thanks to Riley Gaines, the best thing to do would really be: Zero out funding for sports.  Again, phy ed  is a requirement of any solid education program.  And walking, kickball and assorted other activities can be utilized with no cost to taxpayers -- and without upsetting Riley Gaines.  She never need again worry that she might have almost won.  

She wants to play the victim so let's let her.  And, who knows, maybe someone will fund a team sport for The Victim Olympics in her own community and she can finally be crowned by something other than the equivalent of a participation trophy.

We do know we're getting damn tired of money going to sports with no appreciation and no proof that lessons to be a good sport took and sunk in.   

Now that's it.  Get to bed.  No dessert for misbehaving children, go on, brush your teeth and get to bed right now.  Tomorrow, after you've slept on it, we'll address this again to see if you've found a little more gratitude, a little less greed  and a lot more common sense.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):

Thursday, June 22, 2023.  Today we focus on a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing where a hate merchant emerges from what appears to be a lavender marriage to preach hate and lies.

A hearing took place yesterday in the Senate.  I'm not interested in closet cases so if it's a hearing about LGBTQ+ people and you're lifelong closet case?  You're over fifty and can't come out of the closet we should just take that to mean you're a damn liar.  There's no other word for it.  You're an elected member of Congress and you're too scared to come out of the closet?  Yeah, we're not going to waste my time on your pitiful ass or waste my time indulging your own self-loathing.  I usually try to be fair in covering these hearings but in this case, no, I'm not worried about FAIRNESS FOR A CLOSET CASE.  There's a lot to cover from the hearing, we'll probably have to do it today and tomorrow and I'm not wasting my time on a closet case.

Today, we'll mainly focus on two lying witnesses.  It was the Senate Judiciary Committee which is chaired by Senator Dick Durbin.

Chair: Dick Durbin: This weekend, cities, including Chicago, across the globe, will host their annual pride parades to celebrate LTBGQ families, friends and neighbors. In just a short time, relative short time, a few decades, our nation has made remarkable progress in protecting the rights of LGBTQ Americans. Eight years ago this month, for instance, eight years, OBERGEFELL V HODGES which made marriage equality the law of the land. And last year, on a bipartisan basis, Congress codified these protections into law with THE RESPECT FOR MARRIAGE ACT. While Pride Month is an opportunity to celebrate these milestones, today we also remember that Pride began with an act of resistance. Back in 1970, the first ever pride parade was organized to mark the one year anniversary of The Stonewall Uprising. It was a protest led by gay, transgender and gender non-confirming Americans who refused to accept an unjust system of laws and united together to change not just America, but to change the world. Today, we draw from that spirit to unite together in acknowledging and defending the rights of LGBTQ Americans because right now extremist politicians across America are targeting LGBTQ youth along with the medical professionals who care for them and the parents who love them. I want to turn to a video that shows the story of one of those parents and his plea for the leaders in his home state of Missouri to stop these attacks.

At this point, a video was played for the Senate.  I'm going with the ACLU version which is slightly different from the one he played by two sentences.  HRC and others have their videos up and, again, with one or two sentences difference in terms of how it was edited. 

And here's the father speaking in the video:

Brandon Boulware: I'm a lifelong Missourian, I'm a lawyer, I'm a Christian, I'm the son of a Methodist minister, I'm a husband. I'm the father of four kids -- two boys, two girls -- including a wonderful and beautiful transgender daughter. Today happens to be her birthday and I chose to be here. She doesn't know that. She thinks I'm at work. I came here today as a parent to share my story. One thing I hear when transgender is discussed is, "I don't get it. I don't understand." And I would expect some of you to have said that and to feel the same way. I didn't get it either. For years, I didn't get it. For years, I would not let my daughter wear girl clothes. I did not let her play with girl toys. I forced my daughter to wear boy clothes and get short haircuts and play on boys' sports teams. Why did I do this? To protect my child. I did not want my daughter or her siblings to get teased. And truth be told, I did it to protect myself as well. I wanted to avoid those inevitable questions as to why my child did not look and act like a boy. My child was miserable. I cannot overstate that. She was absolutely miserable. Especially at school. No confidence. No friends. No laughter. I -- I can honestly say this, I had a child who did not smile. We did that for years. We did that against the advice of teachers, therapists and other experts. I remember the day everything changed for me. I'd gotten home from work and my daughter and her brother were on the front lawn. And she had, my daughter had sneaked on one of her older sister's play dresses and they wanted to go across the street and play with the neighbors' kids. When it was time for dinner, I said, "Come in." She asked can she go across the street? I said "no." She asked me if she went inside and put on boy clothes could she then go across the street and play? And it's then that it hit me. My daughter was equating being good with being someone else. I was teaching her to deny who she is. As a parent, the one thing we cannot do, the one thing, is silence our child's spirit. My child was miserable. I cannot overstate that. She was absolutely miserable. And so on that day, my wife and I stopped silencing our child's spirit. The moment we allowed our daughter to be who she is, to grow her hair, to wear the clothes she wanted to wear, she was a different child. It was immediate. It was a total transformation. I now have a confident, a smiling, a happy daughter. She plays on girls' volleyball teams, she has friendships, she's a kid. I came here today as a parent to share my story. I need you to understand that this language, if it becomes law, will have real effects on real people. It will effect my daughter. It will mean that she cannot play on the girls' volleyball team or dance squad or tennis team. I ask you please don't take that away from my daughter or the countless others like her who are out there. Let them have their childhoods, let them be who they are. I ask you to vote against this legislation.

These are serious issues and Senator Durbin noted that: 


Already this year, our nation has seen a wave of anti-LGBTQ bills. More than 525 have been introduced in 41 states -- many of them specifically targeting our transgender youth. Some bills seek to ban gender affirming care while others are set to dictate what sports kids can play and what bathrooms they can use. But all of them are part of the same concerted effort: Exercising the power of government to target children. At the same time, leaders of the far right are promoting anti-LGBTQ rhetoric. During this year's Conservative Political Action Conference, one speaker was applauded when he declared, and I quote, "Transgenderism must be eradicated." We must reject this divisive and hateful rhetoric. And at this point, I'd like to remind our colleagues: Our children are listening and they are in danger. In fact, today transgender youth are at the most risk of homelessness, depression and death by suicide. So when these young people who are already struggling hear politicians amplify hateful rhetoric that denies their very existence, what message does it send? We have a responsibility to support all of our children no matter how they identify. This morning across America, families are meeting with doctors and being told that they must make critical decisions, life and death decisions, about surgery and medical treatment for their children. These are personal and family moments which the parents will never forget. I know, I've been there. But increasingly, state legislatures have decided that the decisions will be subject to regulations and criminal punishment by the government. You saw the video of the Missouri father. Does he sound like a radical who's trying to experiment with his child's future? Not to me. He sounds like a father who resisted acknowledging the real condition of his child until he realized he was wrong. I'm sure it was a painful labored process

Immediately after a mincing person felt the need to talk about our children.

Our children?  Have some.  Then come talk about our children.  Until then, you don't anything about children.  It is amazing the level of control and hatred being imposed by childless hate merchants who have never parented.  You people need to just shut up, that's all there is too it.  Just shut up.

You're not put in the position by your own choice since you've chosen not to raise children.  So stop pretending you know how to parent because you don't.  You're happy to tell others how to parent but, again, you don't know a damn thing because you've never done it.  If you had, you'd be far less hateful and a little more understanding of what children are and that children include all kinds -- yes, trans children are children.  No, despite what Marjorie Taylor Greene says in one hearing after another, all children are not straight and White.

Let's start with a liar.  Matt Sharp is with the Alliance Defending Freedom -- a right-wing hate group that spews lies automatically.  Let's note one of his lies.

Now the hearing was entitled Protecting Pride: Defending the Civil Rights of LGBTQ Americans.  Grasp it?  Matt didn't.  I guess if you're stupid, your career options are severely limited and you go with hate merchant.

In his submitted written statement, Liar Matty wrote, "The harms go on: Lorie Smith, owner of website-design company 303 Creative, is awaiting a decision from the U.S. Supreme Court over whether Colorado’s SOGI law can compel Lorie and her fellow Coloradans to speak messages they don’t believe.  Lori, who is awaiting a decision right now from the Supreme Court is hoping the Court will uphold the freedom of all Americans[.]"

No, she's not.  Let's stop pretending.  Lori is trying to pursue the avenue that Jonathan Turley has promoted pro bono.  Fortunately for America, Turley is not as smart as he thinks he is.  If we had a functioning Supreme Court, the case would not have reached them.

Liar Matt Sharp:  For example, Colorado officials are misusing a state law to censor Lori Smith owner of website design company [we're not promoting her company] and require her to create designs that violate her sincere beliefs about marriage.  Lori, who's awaiting a decision right now from the US Supreme Court is hoping the Court will uphold the freedom of all Americans to speak what they believe without fear of government punishment.

No law's been misused.  That's a lie.  Lori doesn't create website designs for marriages.  That's a lie as well.

And that lie is why her case shouldn't even be heard.  There has been no action against her, she does not do what she's suing for.  She has no standing -- no legal standing.  And we have maintained that for over a year.  If you missed it recently, the Court just sent a case bye-bye noting the plaintiff did not have standing.  That's what it should legally do with Lori as well. 

We're not talking about Matt's misguided and harmful opinion.  We're talking about facts.  Matt's lying before Congress and should be punished.  He knew not to put it in writing because someone would have checked it and corrected him when the hearing was held.  

My opinion is that Lori's hate is not excused by religion and that if she offers a public service, she has to offer to all and not discriminate.  My opinion.

My telling you the facts that she has no standing and has suffered no legal harm at present so she has no case?  Again, facts.  Matt's a liar and can't get through his opening statement without lying.

Let me also be clear on another issue.  I thought we'd all know this by the time we were adults because we start out as children.  Apparently, we don't all learn basics or we just want to lie and pretend we don't.  Matty wanted you to know that freedom of speech was violated.  T-shirt wise.

You all know, I'm sure of the 27th amendment where, in 1976, young Bradley Smith was sent home for wearing a Farrah Fawcett t-shirt, the one of her with the red one-piece bathing suit.  The school felt that it violated their dress code.  His parents pursued the matter all the way up to the Supreme Court where, in a five-to-seven verdict, the majority opinion written by Rehnquist, it was decided, "The nipple shall be liberated" and there was great rejoicing across the land as Farrah's clothed but visible nipples could be displayed on every campus.

If you didn't get it, that's all made up.  We didn't have 12 members on the court.  

Now students were sent home -- and always have been and probably always will be -- when it's decided that their clothing is inappropriate for their campus.  

There is no real freedom of speech on campus.  That's true even of college.  The strongest rights students have in terms of free speech have traditionally revolved around the issue of journalism -- such as the yearbook or a paper.  With regards to clothing?  An item of clothing only has to be determined by school officials to be "disruptive."  Doesn't matter if it's Farrah's lovely and athletic body (Farrah and Cheryl Tiegs should get credit for transforming Americans notions on how women could look) or if it's a statement -- true or false -- printed on a t-shirt.  It only has to be determined that the clothing could cause disruption on the campus.  That is what the courts have always held when it comes to student clothing.

Matty doesn't know this because he's understanding of the law is severely limited by his apparent addiction to lying.

In most hearings, he would stand out for his lying.  In this one, he was rolled over by a liar surpeme.

There's an ugly girl born every minute.  Or in Hate Merchant Riley Gaines case, born again.

She's the loser that came in sixth in a swim meet and they tried to be kind and pretend she came in fifth but you can't be kind to hate merchants.  Beating Riley at fifth place was Lia Thomas.  Lia is trans.  Four other women also beat Riley.  They are not trans.

Riley is a loser and, as Ruth noted last night, appears to be married to a gay man.  Oh, Riley, it's just not your decade, hon. 

(As Ruth notes, Marcia has repeatedly covered Riley.  If you're new to that Hate Merchant, check out Marcia's coverage.)

Yesterday, Riley took her ugly lie face to the US Senate Judiciary Committee and lied.  No surprise.  She's been lying ever since she lost to five women.  That's what liars do, they lie.  Riley lying comes as easy to her as looking ugly and flat chested.  

I have neither the time nor the desire to note and debunk everyone of Riley's lies.

Let's establish what a hateful little liar she is.  Wearing more makeup than any actress playing a whore would dare, she declared before the Committee, "I don't believe trans athletes should be banned from sports" and that she "just want[s] everyone to compete where it's fair and where it's safe.  I don't understand why that's overly controversial."

It is controversial.  Period.  Forget overly and the liar Riley is among the ones that makes it so.

She wants everyone to be able to compete, she lies.  She wants everyone to be treated with respect, she lies.

"Lia Thomas is not a brave, courageous woman who EARNED a national title.   He is an arrogant, cheat who STOLE a national title from a hardworking, deserving woman."

That's her Tweet.  She's got it pinned to the top of her Twitter feed.

First, that's her sentence and her poor grammar -- no comma is needed between "arrogant" and "cheat."  Cheat is a noun and arrogant is the adjective.  Don't they teach  English in KKK Hicksville?

Second, Lia is a woman.  Don't pretend you respect and love and care when you are a hateful little _____ [use every word of choice there -- myself, I'm going with Cher's favorite curse word].  

You don't love anyone but yourself.  Your a failure and a liar and you misgendered Lia.  

They let you get away with that at your MAGA rallies and the places where you endorse Doo-Doo Ron Ron DeSantis.  But, no, you don't get away with it in the real world.

Nor do you get away with lying about feminism.

Lia, she wanted to insist to a possible closet case on the Committee, was 'mansplaining.'  And feminism, she insisted is not "a fluid term."

Yes, feminism in the 70s had some struggling with transgender issues.  Sometimes it was the very issue of transgender and sometimes it was someone begging to be made fun of.  Such as the woman who felt the need to play daintier than thou and got mocked by Nora Ephron for claiming she knew nothing about cars anymore after her surgery.  She seemed to feel that, because she was born male, now being a woman she really had to overdue it.

In fairness to her, she grew up in a different time and probably didn't see as many butch women as there are today.  If she were alive today, she could see Riley and grasp that dainty and feminine don't define a woman.  Thanks, Riley, for demonstrating that so well.

Life is about growing up -- all of us.  So while some feminists did have some issues adjusting, they long ago grew up.  Germaine Greer?  Slut feminism isn't feminism to must of us.  Germaine was an awful woman long before the world realized she was a TERF.  Lillian Roxon was an actual feminist.  Lillian tried to be friends with Germaine, even found her lodging when she visited the US.  Nothing was ever good enough for Germaine.  And, buy a clue, feminists aren't rushing to publish in magazines with titles like SCREW.

The feminist movement -- even Gloria Steinem -- long ago came to terms with reality and grasped that trans women are women.  

Those of us who are actually feminists don't need lies from Riley or to be told how things should be by a greedy little ---- who never did a thing for anyone else and seeks to pursue her own self-actualization and self-focus and self-everything. Me me me me, says Riley, and, no, she's not practicing her musical scales.

Riley wants to pretend she's a feminist but she belongs to ("I am an advisor for") the historically anti-feminist Independent Women's Forum.

Sidebar: They're transphobes and hate merchants who are part of the attacks on the LGBTQ+ community.  I believe it was two weeks ago that I announced sadly that I would no longer be noting Bonnie Erbe's TO THE CONTRARY.  It's a great show that focuses on women's issues.  It features a wide range of women's voices.  That I was okay with.  I stated two weeks ago that I had learned more and I was not going to platform the show anymore.  Bonnie was not the problem.  But her guests from Independent Women's Forum.  They lie and they deceive.  They use Bonnie's show to portray themselves as normal.  While behind the scene, they're plotting and focused on destroying LGBTQ+ rights.  This is a cabal far bigger than the one that tried to take down Bill Clinton.  They have various people fronting as something other than hate merchants who are under orders not to speak of LGBTQ+ issues but instead appear reasonable and reasoned to get media access.  They have attorneys who present as left -- even though Lawrence Tribe, for example, can't stand them -- but they've cultivated long standing relationships with the extreme right-wing Federalist Society.  This is kept hidden from the American people.  So much is kept hidden because like most crooks, they work in darkness.  Lawrence Tribe is right to especially hate one of them.  This did not just suddenly happen.  It was plotted in secret and planned for years.  

That's why I'm being very clear that I am not platforming people if they're not defending LGBTQ+.  I don't know who to trust.  See "" for that discussion.  Sam Seder grates on my nerves.  I'm not trying to insult him right now.  But I posted him Tuesday.  And will post him again.  He's defending LGBTQ+.  If you're not, you're probably not going up here.  Probably?  One YOUTUBER e-mailed that he's gay.  I actually already knew.  I am confused as to why a grown man on the left can't say the words -- "Why can't I say the word?" as Ellen DeGeneres' character asked in "The Puppy" on ELLEN -- but he's still young.  It's not like he's a certain elderly Texan who still can't come out.  80 years and counting and never married but we're never supposed to point that out or, as Molly Ivins like to point out, there's not an LGBTQ+ bookstore in Texas that doesn't have autographed books by him despite the fact that he's not doing book events at those stores because he's that deep in the closet.

I trust BLACK POWER MEDIA, THE KAREN HUNTER SHOW, even THE VANGUARD, for example because they've already gone on record by what they address on their programs.  But if you're being silent -- after all these attacks this year alone -- then I'm not going out on a limb for you or telling others to trust you.  You better represent or you better get used to people concluding that you're an enemy to LGBTQ+ people.  

Back to liar Riley.  She didn't tie with Lia.  She lost to Lia.  I don't care about her qualifier of "one hundredth of a second."  You were after her.  You lost to her.  You're a loser.  I can't imagine that concept is new to you -- you grew up with a mirror, right?

Taking time out from what appears to be a lavender marriage, Riley wanted to insist to the Committee, "Having only one trophy, the NCAA handed it to Thomas and told me I would go home empty-handed because Thomas needed to hold the trophy for photo purposes. I was shocked.  I felt betrayed and belittled, reduced to a photo-op.  But my feelings did not matter.  What mattered to the NCAA were the feelings of a biological male."

Oh, the horror.  

Riley, are you lying now or were you lying then -- you know, when you first spoke to the press and before you became a hag for right-wing media?  Because your story keeps changing.

And I checked with NCAA friends.  That's not what you were told.  Lia beat you.  They were being kind because you were a big baby.  They told that they only had five trophies and they were kind enough to say they'd send you one.  You told them that was "perfectly fine."  Remember that, Riley?  Because they do.

You render that and everything else that took place with a skewed meaning because you do love to play the victim. 

I guess that makes sense.  You can't play the winner and you can't play the beauty so I guess the only role left for you is victim.

No, your feelings don't matter.  You came in sixth.  That's reality.  They shouldn't have babied you.  They should have just said, "Riley, you know how you're ugly and hoped you could make up for it by focusing on sports?  Well  maybe you can find another interest to focus on?"

She further testified that it was awful for her to share a locker room with Lia due to Lia's male genitalia.  I'm so glad, Riley, that you appear to have married a man who is not going to show you his genitalia.  Should keep you sane.  Or what passes for sane when it comes to you.  

She did not give consent!!!!  She did not give consent!!!! And it was not a safe space for her!!!!

As she herself admits, "you're undressing quickly in front of one another."  Exactly, so look the other way or, better yet, don't be sneaking peaks at one of your competitor's genitals.  What kind of perv are you, Riley?  Everyone else was there to swim but you're apparently slack jawed, open mouthed gawking at the bodies of people around you.  That must have made them very uncomfortable.


Riley wants you to know there were tears from unnamed "from finishers who missed being named an All-American by one place." 


By one place?

Don't you mean you? Why are you referring to yourself in the plural?

She wanted the Committee to know she hears agreement from "gay, lesbian, and trans-identifying Americans."  Oh, Riley. Is Caitlyn Jenner trying to groom you?  That might happen.  Self-loathing Republican and all.  

But most healthy gay, lesbian and trans Americans -- not 'identify,' just trans -- are not agreeing with you.  In fact, you saw what the LGBTQ+ community thinks of you when you showed up in San Francisco to preach your hate, remember?

And where is that lawsuit because you never filed it.  I know why.  You weren't physically assaulted.  Campus police told me that.  

But again, you suck at sports and you're butt-ugly so victim really is the only role left for you.

She wants to talk about "the science."  Don't you love it when a jock on a scholarship wants to lecture others.  So we're talking science.  Where do you stand on COVID?  I know where your buddies at TPUSA stand.  How much are they paying  you, Riley?  Or are they just covering the cost of travel and housing for your Hate Tour?  Be honest when it's time to file with the IRS. 

And for those who don't know TPUSA:


In December 2017, The New Yorker published an article by Jane Mayer showcasing interviews with former minority members of TPUSA. Former staff members said they witnessed widespread discrimination against minorities in the group, and stated "the organization was a difficult workplace and rife with tension, some of it racial."[26][133] One former employee, an African-American woman, said she was the only person of color working for the organization at the time she was hired in 2014; she then said that she was fired on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The article also revealed text messages sent by Crystal Clanton – who was a leading figure in the organization and served as the group's national field director for five years – to another Turning Point employee saying "i hate black people. Like fuck them all ... I hate blacks. End of story." Kirk responded to the revelations by saying that "Turning Point assessed the situation and took decisive action within 72 hours of being made aware of the issue."[26] The article also noted that Kirk had explicitly praised Clanton in his book Time for a Turning Point, saying that she had been "the best hire we ever could have made", and that "Turning Point needs more Crystals; so does America."[26]

In an April 2018 article titled "Turning Point USA Keeps Accidentally Hiring Racists", HuffPost reported that the woman hired to replace Crystal Clanton had a history of using racial slurs, particularly against African-Americans, on Twitter before deleting her account. In response to the reports, Kirk referred to the individual in question as "a former employee" in his official statement (without clarifying when she had been fired), and Turning Point issued an internal memo announcing that all current and new staff would face social media background checks.[134]

In the Hillsdale College Collegian, opinions editor Kaylee McGhee wrote an article titled "Charlie Kirk and TPUSA aren't conservative, as real conservatives already knew". In the article, McGhee referred to TPUSA as a "reactionary cancer" rather than a group supporting real conservatism that is "supposed to preserve the timeless principles of liberty and equality for all".[135] In June 2018, conservative radio talk show host Joe Walsh resigned from the TPUSA board because Kirk was too closely tied to Donald Trump. Walsh said: "It's so important to not be beholden to politicians, but to be beholden to the issues ... When Charlie went to work for Trump, that crossed that line. You can't advance Trump and advance these issues."[136]

During October and November 2019, Kirk launched the Culture War college tour of speaking events with appearances from many conservatives such as Donald Trump Jr.Lara Trump and Kimberly Guilfoyle. These events were frequently targeted by homophobic and antisemitic members of the alt-right and far-right who consider TPUSA to be too mainstream and not sufficiently conservative. Concerted efforts were made by this group to ask leading questions during the Q&A sections on controversial topics such as Israel and LGBTQ issues in order to challenge the extent of the speakers' views.[137]

In November 2019, the Dartmouth Review called TPUSA an organization that promoted Charlie Kirk and Donald Trump first, rather than conservative values. The article added "True conservatives must eventually outgrow TPUSA and devote their efforts elsewhere. We must challenge ourselves by pursuing an environment of rigorous inquiry, instead of being coddled by the intellectually devoid echo chamber of TPUSA, compromising our values for recognition."

[. . .]

Anti-Defamation League and Southern Poverty Law Center[edit]

In 2019, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has called TPUSA an alt-lite organization.[143] Both the ADL and the Southern Poverty Law Center have criticized TPUSA for affiliating with activists from the alt-right and the far-right.[144] The ADL has also reported that the group's leadership and activists "have made multiple racist or bigoted comments" and have links to extremism.[5]

In 2018, the Southern Poverty Law Center's Hatewatch documented TPUSA's links to white supremacists.[145][146]

Let's note Martina Navratilova quickly.  She's a TERF.  She's an idiot.  Riley testified repeatedly about the 'threat' that a trans woman presents to her in the dressing room.  Many of you may remember when these hate merchants tried to say that of lesbians.  Now they go for the trans women and idiots like Martina rush to help them out.  Again, the same argument was once used against lesbians.

We'll pick up on the hearing tomorrow.   Today, we'll wind down with this from Senator Tammy Baldwin's office:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) today joined Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Corey Booker (D-NJ) in introducing the Equality Act – historic, comprehensive legislation to ban discrimination against LGBTQ+ Americans, just as religious, racial, and ethnic discrimination are illegal everywhere in the United States.

“If we want to live up to our nation’s ideal of true equality, we must address the fact that we have been coming up short. It is wrong that in a majority of states, LGBTQ+ people can be denied an apartment, cut from a job, thrown out of a store, or face other forms of discrimination just because of who they are or who they love,” said Senator Baldwin. “And that’s why I am proud to join my colleagues in introducing the Equality Act to protect LGBTQ+ Americans against discrimination and live up to our nation’s ideals of freedom and equality.”

The Equality Act would amend the landmark federal anti-discrimination laws to explicitly add sexual orientation and gender identity to longstanding bans on discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, jury service, access to credit, federal funding, and more. It would also add protections against sex discrimination in parts of anti-discrimination laws where these protections had not been included previously, such as public accommodations and federal funding.

“Generations of Americans have marched, voted, organized, and raised their voices to move us closer toward a more perfect union with freedom, equality, and opportunity for all,” said Senator Merkley. “We all go to work and school, go home, and go shopping, and none of us should have to keep our families hidden or pretend to be someone we’re not to do those things. Yet in some states, Americans can still be evicted, be thrown out of a restaurant, or be denied a loan because of who they are or whom they love. To realize the vision of America as a land of freedom and equality, we must be willing to take the steps to bring that vision closer to reality, and that’s exactly what the Equality Act does.”

“The flood of legislation in state after state seeking to undermine the rights of LGBTQ+ Americans is antithetical to our nation’s fundamental ideals and only serves to foster more hate, division, and prejudice,” said Senator Booker. “Congress must act to ensure that no person is discriminated against based on their gender identity or who they love. That is why I am proud to join again with colleagues to reintroduce the Equality Act, landmark legislation that will guarantee that LGBTQ+ Americans are protected under federal law and move us one step closer to having a nation that truly lives up to our ideals of liberty, freedom, and justice for all.”

LGBTQ+ equality received a huge boost across the nation last year when President Biden signed Senator Baldwin’s bipartisan Respect for Marriage Act into law, enshrining federal protections for same-sex and interracial marriages. Further, in 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Bostock v. Clayton County that workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is prohibited as a form of sex discrimination under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. However, this court ruling has not yet been nationally applied to other areas of potential discrimination—including housing, public accommodations, jury service, access to credit, and more.

LGBTQ+ Americans around the country are facing an uptick in discrimination and dangerous state-sponsored legislation. State legislatures have introduced nearly 500 pieces of legislation that target LGBTQ+ rights. Despite Americans’ increasing support of LGBTQ+ rights and protections, the majority of states currently do not have fully-inclusive non-discrimination laws for members of the LGBTQ+ community.

U.S. Representative Mark Takano (D-CA-39) led the introduction of the Equality Act in the House.

The full text of the Equality Act can be found here as introduced in the Senate, and here as introduced in the House.

A summary of the bill can be found here.

The Senator's remarks can be downloaded here



The following sites updated: