Saturday, March 31, 2012

Must Reads

Radley Balko: Illinois Traffic Stop Of Star Trek Fans Raises Concerns About Drug Searches, Police Dogs, Bad Cops

Steven Pearlstein: Eat your broccoli, Justice Scalia

Eugene Robinson: A stronger prescription for what ails health care

President Obama's Weekly Address - March 31, 2012

Passing the Buffett Rule So That Everyone Pays Their Fair Share

Tuesday, March 27, 2012



I'm sick of the "a SCOTUS loss is a win for Dems" crap. A SCOTUS loss means another goddamn fight for healthcare reform. And right now, I need my insurance to stay as it is and not as my insurance company will want it to be. I LIKE ObamaCARES. I like that my son’s pre-existing condition didn’t impact our premium when we switched companies after ObamaCARES passed. I like that his and my annual exams are covered at no additional cost. I like that Sebelius is going after companies that are hiking rates too high. I like that companies can’t charge more for their income than for our care. I like ObamaCARES!

And this shit about “it will fire up the base if SCOTUS rules against the law” is pure BULLSHIT! We were fired up during the last debate and what good did it do us? We had infighting aka BITCHING from day one. Democrats fired on Obama as much as the Republicans did. We left him undefended from the shit storms of death panels every time we decided he wasn’t “fighting” hard enough. Remember? Remember how the whole “grow a pair”, “grow a spine”, “fight” rhetoric was fired at Obama every damn day by his own damn party?

Yah, we were fired up! Fired up and ready to fucking yell at our own President.

I do not want that shit again. And I don’t trust all of you to fight the next round any differently. Some of you get me on this. Some of you know EXACTLY the shit I mean and know that it will require composure and energy we don’t want to waste on the same assholes who were so COUNTERPRODUCTIVE and then didn’t even fucking bother to get out the vote the next time. Why THE FUCK do I want to enter that stadium AGAIN?!?! I don’t trust my team enough to march into that game all over again. Hell, I know what to expect from the right, but from the left? I sure as hell know some of you would fucking bail and wail.

Will I be fired up if this fails? Yeah. Will I trust that you’ll all be fired up in a productive way? HELL, NO!

I want single payer and I think either SCOTUS decision could fire us up to move toward that. But some of my teammates will totally fuck this up for all of us either way. So I’d rather keep ObamaCARES in tact and go from there. Not go back to 2009 and fuck it all up from there.

It's Okay, White People, We Can Admit The Truth.


When the Trayvon Martin news became a big social media event, I was on vacation in the beautiful woods of Oklahoma - yes they exist. I went to two Walmarts for groceries and was nervous as hell for my car with the Obama sunrise O sitting out in the parking lot. My hope was no one knew what that was. It was creepy. I was surrounded by hunters and obvious Tea Partiers. I felt like I'd walked into the wrong universe.

I am a white woman, so I guess there was no real way to identify me as an outsider -- although, I do look like Rachel Maddow's twin, so it's possible someone could have assumed I was a lesbian liberal Yankee and I'd have been in trouble. I'm not a lesbian but I am a liberal and was raised in New Hampshire, so I was shaky.

But I was lucky. No one sniffed me out. For that period of time, I felt vulnerable. It was my own brain doing that to me, though. No one else.

I read about Trayvon one of the days on that vacation when I hopped online for a few minutes. My immediate thought was, "I can't read that, it's gonna hurt too much". I knew there was nothing good in a story about a dead, beautiful kid. I couldn't bring myself to know what happened because I don't handle grief so well anymore.

After several losses of loved ones in the last six years, and after becoming a mom, I can't watch movies or read books that even touch on a child's death, a parent's death -- or anything sentimental for that matter.

Then we got home and unpacked and I read. I spent the next two days reading and crying and thinking about Trayvon. Thinking I'd had days where I could choose to avoid the grief. His parents had had weeks of nothing but facing theirs. And I got mad. I got mad at a law that allows police to be lackluster, to take the word of a a living man against the silence of a dead kid. I got mad at the man who stalked a child then claimed self-defense.

And now I am mad at the people who haven't uttered a peep. I am mad at apologists trying to make self-defense apply to one person but not another.

And now I am awake.

For years I have read about black men being imprisoned at higher rates than white men. I have read about more black men being falsely incarcerated and later exonerated, than white men. I have read that more black communities suffer from hunger, lack of safe housing, weaker education, slower police response times, and on and on. I've known the data. I was a Sociology minor. I'm a Democrat. I know all of the data.

But until Trayvon Martin was killed and I had to face the sadness and read and listen, I never woke up to the life. The life that is lived by a person who has lived with a system set against him in ways he never knew. In a way society still whispers in our ears but never wants to address.

I have been accused of being a Becky, or of saying the wrong thing when my intent was clearly something benign. I have been stupid and at times in my life, extremely naive. I imagine most of us have thought or said ignorant or fearful things. But we can't play tit for tat or argue over a person's past statements and deeds in lieu of listening and watching current motivation. We can't treat this time as a moment of race-baiting or PC-idealism. And that being said, we HAVE to talk about the fact that Trayvon Martin was killed because he was black. It's okay to actually say it and not feel like backs need to hunch or defensive retorts need to be spit. It's not anti-white people to say it. We can all acknowledge the truth. We, as white people can say, "I don't like that a kid died because he was black". No spite is needed. There's no need to defend Zimmerman's actions because white people are on trial for perpetuating racism by not ever wanting to admit racism. We don't need to find lame excuses or ways to blame a dead kid. It's okay to admit that the President is not being divisive when he says that if he had a son, "He'd look like Trayvon". We don't need to play stupid and act like that wasn't profound as hell. It's alright, white America, to say, "A kid died because he was black and he matters to me".

The Martin family can't hide from the loss and we can't hide from the truth. We can move forward by admitting we are sad and angry and awake.

And yes, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and every vile white person posting at, I'm talking to you.