From my recent trip.


I was somewhere half-way through Pennsylvania when the weather conditions and the hour had me deciding to pull into a road side auto plaza to attempt to get some sleep.

This was one of those auto plazas with a huge football field sized parking lot next to a central building that housed, besides the expected restrooms, such franchises as Starbucks and Subway, and one of those if-you-can’t-find-it-here-then-no-one-sells-it type convenience stores whose selections contained everything from food to car parts with prices so inflated as to be less than convenient, sitting behind a gas station that serves both cars and semi-tractor trailers.

After having parked close to the big travel service building so I could easily address my needs, I moved my car away from the other three cars that were there and parked it away from the main building hoping to be able to catch a nap without being disturbed by any cars that might enter the plaza.

My car is a recent model VW Beetle that is more of a hatch back than a traditional bug.

I thought that, if I rearranged the luggage in the rear storage area after folding down the back seats, I could make an acceptable space to curl up in. This was not as easy as first thought. I had to modify my work a number of times, and the most comfortable I could get was to bend my body into a backward L with my face pushed up against the passenger side of the rear seat area and my feet crammed in the driver’s side corner of the storage area diagonally opposite my head.

Finally giving up, I rearrange the luggage, and put the back seats up into their upright and locked positions.

What I did next would have made the night up to this point a lot less aggravating and the quest for sleep more attainable in a shorter period of time, if I had done it first.

I turned the seat back adjustment knob until the driver’s seat became a totally flat and very comfortable bed that just needed me to assume a relaxed fetal position so that I fell asleep very quickly.

A few hours later I was awoken by a very loud voice right next to my car.

In spite of all the possible places to park it in a practically empty parking lot, a very angry mother had pulled her SUV into the parking space right next to mine, and had begun giving one of the two kids in it a stern lecture, complete with a lesson on life.

It seems that when they had stopped earlier at some location on the way home from where they had spent a few days, the little boy had taken something out of the car with him and had carelessly left it behind. It was something his sister had wanted, bought, and had become for the moment a treasured possession.

The brunt of the sermon was that sometimes people do things that have unforeseen consequences that, even though not intended to, do adversely effect others. The boy’s action may not have been malicious, but the depression it caused his little sister was the same whether it was an innocent act or a plan to inflict emotional damage.

I thought that, overall, the lecture whose theme was to think before acting, would have been more effective if the deliverer of it had done some thinking and had chosen an isolated parking spot to deliver it rather than pull into the space next to the one parked car in an isolated area and waking up its occupant with what should have been a more discrete interaction between mother and son. .

When I got out of the car to readjust my seat and myself, the expression on the woman’s face was total surprise as, for some reason, apparently, in spite of my fogged up windows, she had no idea someone could have been in the car she parked next to.

As I left the parking lot I drove past the one other car that was parked closer to the restroom and franchise building.

Not that far down the road I exited the Turnpike and was woken abruptly a second time when I had to pay a toll of $18.75 to exit.

Poor choices


I was in a political organization once where we needed to find an effective way to bring the majority of the voting population over to our side. Our cause was, of course, a correct one, but it was the PR part that was troublesome.

One of the members suggested he chain himself to the railings of the main entrance to city hall and hold a hunger strike until we had enough signatures to back our cause.

My only question to him was that, other than family and friends, would many people passing by him on the way into city hall care whether or not he was eating.

Was he of that great a significance to the population for them to care?

When it became clear that there was a good chance that SCOTUS would rule in favor of marriage equality, a sort of desperation set in.

The opponents of it, having no real argument against it, other than on religious grounds, as if we were a Sharia country, decided a personal approach would be the best way to show disapproval and made pledges to set themselves on fire, go to Canada, a country that has had marriage equality for years, and get divorced to show that marriage equality destroys marriage.

They did everything but pledge to hold their breaths until they turned blue.

Very mature responses to a serious subject.

Looking at states and countries that have had marriage equality for years should be poof enough that the doom and gloom predictions are total fiction.

Their opposition was based on the strength of their words and the need to have blind faith in what they were saying.

Now that SCOTUS has ruled, will we see the opponents stand on principal, or will we see them rationalizing a way out of their pledges?

I have a feeling they put too much stock in their own importance and figured a threat of self destruction would move millions into their side of the court.

It would appear that they are not as important as they had assumed themselves to be.

The Hissy Fits begin


As I drove toward Oklahoma, I had to pass through the religious corridor.

This is a section of interstate 44 where there seems to be a church every so many feet, with Burma Shave type road signs attributing condemnatory quotes to Jesus and God.

I am not a member of any of the churches that I passed along the way, nor am I sure what separated each denomination from another, but I was sure the differences were minor interpretations of old Hebrew texts.

I have a comfortable relationship with the deity as I choose him to be, and do not find that I need answers from a humanly established system of beliefs that others do and find in the church of their choice.

The only thing I knowingly share with the members of the congregations I passed was that they and I are American citizens protected by the Constitution and sharing the unalienable rights with which the creator endowed us.

Anything else is personal and based on individual choices.

I had left Cape Cod in the early afternoon of Monday, June 15.

I had once lived in Oklahoma, but had spent a couple of years in Massachusetts where people were actually living in a society I had done what I could do to bring about in OK, and before that, California

I was effectively leaving the 21st Century to spend some time in the 19th.

I know quite a few people who have fought for equality in Oklahoma, and I was on my way to celebrate Gay Pride Week with as many as I could run into.

Pride Week alone was good fear fodder for the religious shows I was getting on the Radio from the time I left Pennsylvania, but the impeding decision by the Supreme Court on marriage equality was due, so there was an extra reason for hyperbolic bloviating and totally invented threats passed on as God’s honest truth to those who just absorbed what was aired.

The basic theme was that no one was going to force any preacher with a radio show, at least, to perform a Gay wedding.


Just won’t do it.

They can lock me away for my religious conviction.

I have religious courage in Jesus.

What they do not seem to understand is that anyone who is serious about getting married will attempt to make it a joyous event, and will seek out those who will make it one.

No one is going to pick a church at random for a wedding, and in all the years of same sex marriage in Massachusetts, no one has forced a clergy member to perform a wedding.

It seemed as I was driving that I was not hearing any legitimate argument to support denying taxpaying citizens their rights other than a tax exempt organization was in favor of the idea. And while ignoring 11 years of proof to the contrary, as none of the inevitable disasters and persecutions began when marriage equality began in Massachusetts, the preachers just kept repeating lists of God’s wrath events that will now happen.

Now after the decision was released, it seems that with attention on people’s rights, the churches see the spot light is shifting and are desperately trying to control the story.

No one is going to arrest you for not performing a wedding. The couple would have had to have been morons to approach such a pastor in the first place.

Doesn’t the couple talk to anyone?

And what Gay person doesn’t know a baker, a hair dresser, a caterer, or someone who just loves to organize parties, and has to approach such people at random and blindly.

It was on the Morning of Friday, June 26, as I was swooping through West Virginia that I heard the SCOTUS decision on Marriage Equality. I knew there would be a big rally in Oklahoma City, and I would have loved to have been at it. But reality is what it is.

But I knew this time that by the time I got back to the 21st Century , my friends in the Red States would be there with me.


The assignment.

Draw a picture of a complete American citizen.


Although it is a good thing that with the SCOTUS ruling on same-sex marriage GLBT people have gained more of our rights as citizens, but it is still rather disturbing that people claim that our rights should be put up to the popular vote.

How are unalienable rights, with which we are endowed by our creator, subject to the votes of those who already have and enjoy these rights?

The Fox choice

Fox news assiduously avoided any reference to Josh Duggar when the story about his having sexually abused several young girls, including his sisters, when he was fourteen came out until Megyn Kelly scheduled that interview with the family that gave them the opportunity to excuse themselves for any wrong doing especially on the part of the judgmental parents who are only too willing to condemn other people and other people’s children, but who swept things under the rug when it hit home.

The fault was not theirs, but that of the liberal, secular media.

In their reality Josh Duggar was just “a young boy in puberty and a little too curious about girls.”

There were no legal actions, nor was the troubled boy sent to legitimate counseling to deal with what could be a severe psychological problem that is notoriously difficult to treat and is often repeated.

We had parents who not only failed to deal with things properly, but who went on to make money on a family centered reality show that presented all members of the family as totally righteous and examples to the rest of us with less virtuous families.

According to Fox, Josh Duggar is an unfairly persecuted saint worthy of pity and sympathy. His behavior is an example of forgivable action, and he an unfairly persecuted saint.

By way of contrast, bathing suit clad Dajerria Becton of McKinney, Texas was involved in a situation where a police officer lost control that resulted in her being savagely mistreated at a pool party.

The adults who had been present had argued and fought over alleged racial slurs directed at invited guests who happened to be African-American kids. The adults were ignored, but the Black kids were ordered to the ground and handcuffed when the police arrived, which gives the impression that whoever called the police had misrepresented events, and might have done so for racist reasons.

The Black kids had done nothing, but did react when the mistreatment began.

A police officer’s gun was drawn.

When Megyn Kelly covered this on Fox she stated that “the girl was no saint either.”

From the interviews with witnesses and the phone videos that were shown on all news outlets, there was absolutely nothing upon which Kelly could have based her judgment, yet unlike the Duggar case where the “saint” was provably the “sinner”, Kelly made her pronouncement.

He was just “curious”; she was “no Saint”.

Both Duggar and Becton were both 14 at the time of the events.

While Duggar was basically a good kid who simply made some mistakes, Becton, who did nothing wrong, is a sinful delinquent who deserved what she got.

One is white, Christian, and conservative, while all we know about the other is that she is Black.

But on Fox, that is sufficient to sympathize with one while condemning the other.

The journey continues.


I am on my way to the Buckle of the Bible Belt, and to get there I have to pass through states that claim their religiosity  makes them better than the rest.

And since at least two of them have passed laws making it permissible to discriminate against GLBT people because of “religious freedom”, I am somewhat tempted to stop in these states and see if I am rejected and refused service at public accommodations and eateries for being Gay.  But I am not all that flamboyant, although I am “fabulous” on so many levels. Perhaps the eyelashes on my Beetle might be enough to get labeled.

They believe that they are the holiest parts of the country which makes it okay for them to be judgmental of others while excusing their own short comings by claiming they have asked for forgiveness and have received  it simply for asking. No penance or religious restitution is required.

But as they claim the high road of righteousness, what they hope no one finds out is that they lead the country when it comes to dependency on government assistance, like welfare and food stamps; get more money back for each dollar paid into federal taxes than the sinner states, making them very willing to take unholy money; lead the country in poverty, Gay porn searches on the internet, and are more hooked on making, dealing, and using meth than the cities they criticize.

In spite of condemning birth control as being something for loose women, and abstinence education as the only acceptable form of sex education, they lead the country in teen pregnancy and HIV and STD rates

They condemn same sex marriage in the name of protecting the sanctity of marriage while leading the country in divorce.

They are happy that their political leaders reject the evil of Obamacare while they are addicted to unhealthy diets, and so suffer from easily remedied illnesses, are the leaders in obesity, and have high infant mortality rates.

This should be an adventure filled with stories to share when I return to the 21st Century.


Bon Voyage to me.


My car is all packed, my neighbor will be watching my house, and as of sometime today I will be heading the 1780 miles to Oklahoma City.

I get to pass through a few unfriendly states, but seeing old friends will make it bearable.

Since I am leaving myself plenty of time in both directions, I will stop and see things I usually whizzed by in previous years when I was heading to Massachusetts for Christmas, and back to OKC for work.

I also have a bit of Oscar’s ashes in a small container so I can spread them on his favorite pee spot in Mesta Park.

I know your hearts will be broken, but my blogs will be sporadic until my return, but I will take plenty of pictures that will probably mean more to me than anyone else, and will blog when I can.

Haven’t partied hearty for a long time, so no guarantees.






A simple explanation


The religious right demands to know why, when one of their own who has been passing judgment on others, condemning large numbers of the population to the fires of hell, presenting false information to scare one group of people against another is found guilty of doing what they have condemned in others, often based on no proof, just uninformed opinion, they are roundly condemned by others.

They assume the role of the persecuted while claiming no one has a right to object to their falsehoods, or expose them as hypocrites.

Well, the answer is simple.

Because, Jesus.

Matthew 23: 26-28. “You blind Pharisees, first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish, so that the outside of it may become clean also. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness”.


Because, Jesus.

Who needs clean water anyway.


The Obama administration wants to clarify the EPA’s regulatory powers under the Clean Water Act.

Congressional Republicans are one step closer to blocking that. Just this week, the Senate Environment and Public Works committee voted 11-9 to pass a bill that would effectively repeal the administration’s recently announced regulations for water pollution.

Who needs clean water, anyway.

The vote was split along party lines.

In May the president had released the Waters for the United States Rule, which, according to the EPA, “ensures that waters protected under the Clean Water Act are more precisely defined, more predictably determined, and easier for businesses and industry to understand”, but doesn’t “protect any new types of waters, regulate most ditches, apply to groundwater, create any new permitting requirements for agriculture, or address land use or private property”.

In a press statement, the EPA explained, that The Clean Water Rule “does not regulate most ditches and does not regulate groundwater, shallow subsurface flows, or tile drains. It does not make changes to current policies on irrigation or water transfers or apply to erosion in a field. The Clean Water Rule addresses the pollution and destruction of waterways – not land use or private property rights.”

Republican Senator John Barrasso of Wyoming sponsored the bill because Republicans feel that the Waters for the United States Rule could adversely impact farmers and industry, and senator Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma, chairman of the committee, believes that farmers in Oklahoma are more concerned about the Clean Water Rule than any other federal policy.

Barrasso’s bill will set guidelines for specific bodies of water that cannot be regulated, and requires that the EPA consult with state and local governments as well as private companies before rewriting the rule.

And we have seen how concerned private companies have been when it comes to the nation’s water by their concern when rivers have been polluted by industrial waste.

The bill now goes to the Senate with 60 votes needed to pass.

According to a press statement by Ally Fields, federal clean water advocate with Environment America, “The senators who voted against clean water today weren’t listening to the majority of Americans who want to see their rivers, streams, and livelihoods protected from pollution”.

Being consistent. It’s important.


In 2003 Donald Rumsfeld justified invading Iraq to introduce democracy, twice supporting that in later speeches.

In May 2003, shortly after the invasion of Iraq, Rumsfeld said Iraq would have a democracy similar to that of the United States:

“Well, the wonderful thing about democracy is that when someone sticks their head up, somebody doesn’t like it. And therefore, there will be that process, just like in our country. There will be a debate. There will be a discussion. And ultimately, people would decide who they want. It won’t be us who will be deciding who is going to be doing anything. It is going to be the Iraqi people, over time”.

On February 9, 2005, in an address given on the USS O’Bannon he said,

“We just experienced last Sunday elections in Iraq. Admittedly, the Iraqi people don’t have much experience with democracy. An awful lot of experts and pundits and people who observe these things and write about them have suggested that the people in that part of the world aren’t ready for democracy, that they aren’t ready for freedom. But if one thinks about what took place Sunday with 25 million people who have had no experience with democracy, and what’s taken place every hour since last Sunday: Instead of talking about killing people, instead of talking about invading neighbors, instead of a country that used chemical weapons against its own people and against its neighbors, what’s being done today in Iraq is politics”.

Later that November Rumsfeld said:

“Well certainly the success that’s being achieved there, if one thinks about it, there were elections in January, then there was, October 15 in Iraq, there was a referendum on the constitution that had been drafted by the people elected by the Iraqi people, and now we’re looking towards a third election in a single year on December 15, where the people will be electing people under their new constitution. That is an enormous step forward for the people of Iraq.

Obviously at the beginning of the war that was supposed to start with shock and awe and would have Iraqi people running to the liberators to thank us for what we did for them, he seems to have thought Democracy would be coming to Iraq thanks to the U.S. of A. by way of a war.

Now years later, and after the country was plunged in debt and members of the military were killed and maimed, and many returned home to be ignored, he now says:

“I’m not one who thinks that our particular template of democracy is appropriate for other countries at every moment of their histories. The idea that we could fashion a democracy in Iraq seemed to me unrealistic. I was concerned about it when I first heard those words.”

He now claims that he never bought into the Bush-Cheney argument that a US invasion of Iraq would lead to democracy there.

A little late; a little contradictory, but that certainly produced a little shock and awe.