Just Wondering

If a loved one has a name that rhymes with a bodily function, do you suppose that ever becomes unfunny?


I’m just saying, do you ever think Doc Holliday got tired of calling his friend Wyatt Burp?

I Explain Things to the Deliberately Obtuse

1.  If you call it "Blogger Day on the Hill" but only invite conservative bloggers, you look like an asshole.  There’s no two ways about it.  If you hurry, you can still change the name of it to "Conservative Blogger Day on the Hill" but the bad taste will linger.

2.  Terry Frank, analogies work like algebra.  a+b=c+d  If a is "liberal bloggers" and b is "dog Campfield (R)" and d is "dog Hackworth (D)," then what is c?

I’ll give you a hint, it’s not "liberal bloggers."  See, because b doesn’t equal d, there’s no way a and c can be the same and still have both sides of the equation actually, you know, equal.

I know you’re trying to shift the terms of the debate, to say that liberal bloggers are just upset about Campfield’s legislation because it’s "stupid" and a "waste of time" and therefore, if we aren’t upset about all stupid, waste of time legislation, we’re hypocrites.

But we both know, because people said repeatedly, that our problems with Campfield’s legislation have to do with the violation of women’s autonomy, the threat to patient/doctor privilege, his handling of opposition, and the fact that it was stupid and a waste of time.

I realize that you’re trying to create a smoke-screen big enough to cover the egregiousness of Campfield’s position, but please.

3.  Wes Comer, you say, "Because it’s now on this side of 2-3" of skin and womb we suddenly deem it worthy of receiving a birth certificate."  You do realize that’s because that’s what being born means, don’t you?  You are on one side of a uterus, you are not yet born.  You are on the other side of a uterus, you are born.

Then you go on:

Let the self-celebrating, snarky-comment-making abortion defenders get as sanctimonious as they want about it. Let the wailing and gnashing of teeth begin — I can already hear the dissenting, idiotic utterances before they’ve escaped the mouths of the mentally numb among us. But let me say this before the venomous grievances are vomited my way — this debate has little to do with Mr. Campfield. The fact is, and I would dare anyone to prove otherwise, that the voices being raised against Campfield have little or nothing to do with his specific legislation and everything to do with the spirit and message of the bill.

Damn straight.  It does have everything to do with the sprit and message of the bill, which is "Stacey Campfield doesn’t think women have the same rights he does."  Stacey Campfield doesn’t have any state legislators trying to violate his doctor/patient privilege.  Stacey Campfield doesn’t have any state legislators trying to compel him to do something that is all the time painful, often dangerous, and sometimes deadly against his will.  Stacey Campfield doesn’t have any state legislators making his medical records public so that any nut with a grudge can collect his name and post it on the internet or track him down or turn him over to the Army of God.  Stacey Campfield doesn’t have any state legislators arguing that another person has a right to his body and that the state ought to be able to compel him to give his sovereignty to that other person against his will.

I think the spirit and the message come through loud and clear.

Listen, there’s not a person in this debate that doesn’t think that babies ought to be celebrated and the women who choose to have them commended.

But let’s be honest about what this is about: you’re angry that you can’t figure out a way to compel women to have babies.  You think that, if you can argue that an unborn life is a legal person from the moment of conception–and a cute and helpless legal person to boot–you can obscure the fact that what you’re talking about is compromising the rights of women and making an end run around the fourteenth amendment which prevents you from depriving me of my liberty without the due process of law.

The Treats from Smiley’s House

Other dogs, it seems, will turn up their noses at some treats.  Not Mrs. Wigglebottom.  If it smells okay and doesn’t try to eat her first, she’ll chomp on it.

Well, Smiley and RUABelle gave her some treats that their dog did not like.

And I have neglected to tell you how funny Mrs. W. is with them.  They’re pretty big and shaped like animals or hearts or whatever and I’ll toss one to her and she’ll let it drop in front of her and then she pats her front paws on the ground very near the treat (she’s been known to do this with the cats, but this is the first time I’ve see her do it with food) and wiggles her bottom and pats near the treat some more.  

Today, she kind of tossed it over her head to herself.

And then she ate it.

But I am just tickled with delight at how much she enjoys the pre-game activities.

I wonder if she’s getting silly in her old age. 

Well, Golly!

I was just setting around the old meth lab/stillhouse today, handing my babies cigarette butts to play with to keep them busy while I yet again sat down to marvel at this here interactive picture radio that what let’s me communicate with folks other than my close kin, when I read this right informative comment from PS.


She says,



Here are only SOME of the facts of which I speak: I have lived on 3 CONTINENTS in several countries, some black, some white and some a mixture of both ethnicities.  Only an absolute lamebrain could ignore the screaming looseness, unbridled and usually indiscriminate sexual nature of the white women in this and other countries.


Well, of course, I had to go ask my Paw what some of those words meant, and I was stunned to find out that there were more continents than the United States and Iraq, which are the only two places we’ve ever heard of around here now that all the Vietnam vets are dead.


She goes on:



Judging by a glance at your other rantings, you seem to be a highly irrational creature who may not have the intellectual capacity to properly understand this mail and whose main aim is to live true to the well-crafted image of white people as highly irrational, melanin-deficient and perpetually UNJUSTIFIABLY angry creatures whose pattern of thinking consistently defies the natural rule of life, namely: logic.  Logic in life equates a DEFICIENCY with INFERIORITY of some sort. a deficiency, is just that: a LACK of something.  This race is clearly ridden with numerous deficiencies ranging from musculature to creativity and in this case, clearly, intellect.  It is no reason, however, to be serial murderers trying to destroy every person without those deficiencies, steal their ideas and take credit for their work, rape their women, and spread lies using media channels.


Well, by god, once I leaned that “this race is clearly ridden with numerous deficiencies” I wrote a letter to NASCAR to warn them.  I just about couldn’t stand it if Dale Junior got hurt again, so I hope they can get those deficiencies taken care of before the next race.


But I’ll say this, PS has convinced me.  I went down in the cellar and untied the girls I spend my babies’ nap times playing with and I swear, as all y’all as my witnesses, I am done with the serial murdering.  From here on out, I will just murder one at a time.


I have seen the light.  I am reformed. 


Now, where’s me a cousin?  I’m needing some lovin’.

Nope

Sly Civilian says:



Tactically, it is simply a fact that we need to acknowledge the social privilege of Christian rhetorics and act accordingly. This is not to say that y’all ought to begin to tiptoe around or sacrifice your better judgement, but for the sake of the Holy Thing on Top of the High Place…take these rhetorics seriously enough to engage them on their terms. Otherwise, you’re screaming into the wind.


To which, I say, “nope.”


No thanks.


No, no, no.


First, there’s not just one kind of Christian rhetoric.  There’s just not.  Diverse Christians with sincerely held beliefs come to many different conclusions about right action based on the Bible.


This school of neo-theocrats thrives on the misunderstanding that their rhetorical strategies are the rhetorical strategies of Christians and, if you don’t play nice with the neo-theocrats, you aren’t playing nice with the Christians.


That’s bullshit and, at it’s core, it’s disrespectful of Christians, assuming, as it does, that all Christians are insane theocrats who want to police and punish everyone else.


Which brings me to my second point, if you think that the potty-mouthed liberal feminist doesn’t already have a place in neo-theocratic rhetorics, you aren’t paying attention to the message we women are getting.  Granted, she doesn’t have a great place in neo-theocratic rhetorics, but she’s got a place–as an enemy.


But here’s the thing–it’s nearly impossible for women to NOT be the enemy occasionally to the neo-theocrats.  We’re always doing something wrong–not having enough babies, not serving our husbands cheerfully enough, getting divorced, not getting married, not teaching children about the Bible, teaching male children over 13 about the Bible, dressing too provocatively, not dressing provocatively enough to keep our husbands from straying, and so on, and so on.


Do you know what kind of rhetorical strategy women might embark on in the neo-theocratic movement without criticism?


None.


Every woman, even the women on their side, when they open their mouths run the risk of criticism and chastisement.


The only way we can play by their rules and not be doing something wrong is to just shut the fuck up and take it.


And, no.


If everything you do is going to be wrong, I say, the proper strategy is then to go for it.  To call it like you see it, in terms that match the vileness of their position.


Playing by their rules, we cannot win.


So, the proper strategy is two-fold–refuse to play by their rules and/or lose with such gusto that you inspire others.


 

A Proud Moment

Could anything make me happier than to know that I was a topic of conversation at Stacey Campfield’s dinner Saturday night?  Only knowing that the general consensus among conservatives present was that my writing is "filthy."*

You know what?

If a man who has no respect for the rights of women to bodily autonomy, no respect for the federal law and a woman’s right to confidential medical treatment, no respect for the folks who disagree with him, no respect for decency when it comes to threatening folks’ jobs, and so on, if that man, whose politics are so repugnant, considers me filthy?

I’m honored.

I’d rather be a good-hearted potty-mouth than a sweet-talking viper.

 

 

 

*As I said earlier this evening, sure, I write once about masturbating while reading Campfield’s blog and suddenly I’m "filthy."

Random Things–The Abortion Edition

1.  Remind Me Not to Have Dinner with Campfield

The esteemed Twisty Faster over at I Blame the Patriarchy has named our beloved Stacey Campfield’s beloved death certificate nonsense the Jerkbag Legislation of the Day.

She says of the legislation, “As will surprise no inhabitant of Tennessee, the bill is sponsored by lunatic/state representative Stacey Campfield.”

Some of you may question the use of the term lunatic, but I am not so sure that it’s not inappropriate.  Check out this little bit of projection on his blog

Before the dinner I joked that one well placed bomb could have taken out most of the right wing bloggers in East Tennessee.

I’m not saying that the Left hasn’t been known to run around bombing people, but in my lifetime?  Nothing says right-wing anti-abortion nut-job more clearly than a bomb. 

I must question the judgment, if not the sanity, of a man who’s spent the week threatening someone’s job, trying to push through legislation that will allow public records to be kept of women who’ve had abortions (thus allowing their names to be collected by such charming folks as the Army of God), and now joking about someone blowing up right-wing bloggers.

2.  Thanks, Sarcastro!

Sarcastro deserves a round of applause for fighting as long as he did with the boys in the NiT thread.  I have nothing to add to it except to say that nothing tickles me more than knowing that the same crew who’s running around talking about how we can’t trust science on whatever wants to use science to prove Sarcastro wrong. 

Although, I must say, I can’t decide who I’m more embarrassed for–the people Sarcastro is fighting with who are so obviously outclassed by him or Sarcastro, for having to realize at some point that even if he whipped out a Nobel Prize, none of them would ever concede that he’s smarter than them.

3.  How to Make a Strawman

I find it really interesting how the anti-abortion folks in the NiT thread were constructing their arguments, especially by the bizarre claim they were making that pro-choice people don’t think life begins at conception.  I think some kind of life is present at conception (though aren’t an egg and a sperm also alive? So, I believe life is present even before conception); I just don’t believe that’s a legal person.

I don’t understand what’s so hard for anti-abortion folks to understand about that.

4.  My position

I think I’ve said it before, but this is what I believe.  I believe that the combination of a sperm and an egg brings forth the stirrings of a new life.  If the fertilized egg implants on the uterus and everything goes off without a hitch, the mother’s body will nurture the fertilized egg into a fetus and, eventually, into a viable fetus that will then leave her body and become a baby.

However, pregnancies often don’t go off without a hitch.  Most pregnancies end in miscarriage.  The pregnancies that are carried to term take an enormous physical and emotional toll on the women who carry them.

If a woman wants to be a mother, she’ll most often gladly bear this toll.

But no one has a right to compel her to do so–not any other individual, and not the state.  Aside from military service, I can think of no other instance in which the state can compel a citizen to do something dangerous and potentially deadly against her will. 

I think that compulsory pregnancy frames pregnancy as the proper punishment for “sluts.”  If you look at all the rhetoric among rabid anti-choice people, they’re all about how women have to take responsibility for their actions–i.e. if you’ve had sex and you get pregnant, you deserve it.  Look at how this frames pregnancy as a negative consequence of a bad behavior.

Well, I think you can see that I’d disagree with this on two levels.  Sex isn’t a bad behavior that needs to be punished.  And children are not the proper punishment for sex.

That attitude, that, if you have sex, you have to accept the consequences has got to be some of the most child-unfriendly nonsense I’ve ever heard.  Again, babies are not a punishment.

And forcing women to have babies they view as punishment is not a great way to make happy homes for babies.

For me, it seems the anti-abortion camp is split in two.  There are the folks who are genuinely motivated by their belief that an abortion is a tragedy.  I think you can tell these folks because they’re advocating for better sex ed and for dealing with rapists and child molesters.  They’re supporting research into ending birth defects.  They’re attempting to improve the lives for all mothers and children.

And then there are the folks who just hate women and cannot stand that women are out there making decisions that they don’t approve of.  Those folks are easy enough to spot. 

Home Sweet Home

When Smiley came to pick me up at the airport, I could not have been happier to see him if he were made out of chocolate and gold, and I told him so.

And, after a bit, I was in a car with my dog headed for home.

And now, here I am.

Whew.

Blues Falling Down Like Hail

Like good ole Bob says, I’ve got to keep moving.  Isn’t that the only choice?

One foot in front of the other, through breakfast, checking out, getting to the airport, getting on the plane, getting off the plane, walking to my car, which, I hope, is full of Mrs. Wigglebottom and the Butcher.

One small task after another.

I’m going to take a shower and pack and see what’s new in the world.

I just hope something new and good and better is on the horizon.  You know?

I can stand this if it’s leading to something.

But I get torn.  I need so desperately to believe that this is leading to something so that I can find the strength to make it through, but I suspect that this is just some shit that happens.

I think faith is irrational and often stupid in the face of reality.

But I also think that, without it, most of us would not be able to function.

I know that, if my family could be here for me, even after death, they would be.  I know that.  That’s not faith.  That’s just how they are.  Shoot, if only because they’re nosy and bossy.  But, if it can be done, they’re doing it.  I know that.

Faith is that next small, crazy leap that says, they are here.  You only feel cut off from them because you are so down.

Faith says, just keep moving and trust that the places to step will come, put before you by some unseen force some call fate or god or the will of the ancestors.

So, faith it is.  When all else seems uncertain, trust that one breath can lead to the next. 

I’m in a Snit, Big Time

I don’t even want to get into it except to say that I spent the most egregious afternoon of my professional career today.

I’m not going to blog about work because I need my job, but let’s say that I was hired to take care of horses.  My duties include keeping them fed, watered, and free from shit.  And then I was told nothing else about it. 

Then, imagine that, after eight years, I discovered that most people remove the horses from the stalls before shoveling the shit out with a shovel instead of attempting to dodge the horse while scooping it out by hand.

Y’all, I feel hopeless.  I feel like I have just both fucked my life up beyond repair and been played for a fool.  And I just can’t see how to fix this.

I have half a mind to just not get on that plane tomorrow, but I would miss my dog.

I’m just saying, though, I can understand why people do it, just walk away from their lives.

I would rather do anything else in the world than feel like I was being made an ass of every damn day.

Y’all, I think I’d be an asset to anyone who knew what to do with me.  I’m bright.  I learn things quickly.  I’m curious.  People feel at ease around me and I put off an aura of confidence.  I speak well in public.  I write well.  I think I’m a good employee.  I don’t sew dissent around the office.  I work hard.

But god damn, I feel so low.  I can’t even tell you.

Maybe I’ll just go to bed.

I’m tired of listening to myself complain about this.

This just sucks so much. 

Google Holds the Keys to Its Own Destruction

You may remember that Google partnered with a bunch of libraries to violate the copyright of publishers.  And that Google, because it is so ginormous and because the idea of being able to search libraries’ contents on the internet is so awesome, many folks were torn.

It is a good idea.

They implemented it in just about the most immoral way possible and tried to make up for it by letting publishers opt in and making their books searchable on the web.  Why this makes up for it is that it’s a good idea; publishers just wanted to have some control over copyrighted material.

Well, it turns out that Google really wants publishers to put their material AT Google and that Google seems very nervous when publishers start talking about just posting book content on the web at their own sites, because Google would index that AND publishers would have control over it.

 “Oh, but we have so much server space…”

And server space is getting cheaper all the time.

I think it’s about it get interesting for Google. 

A List of Types of People I Can Not Keep My Hands Off

1.  Soft, round women with soft lips and wicked smiles.

2.  Really androgynous looking women who are wearing aprons of any sort.

3.  Men above the age of 35.

 Let us spend a moment discussing the wonders of the men who are older than 35.  Let us list their good points.

1.  Cute little eye crinkles.

2.  They bring me drinks.

3.  They beg me not to fire them when I suggest that, when I’m rich, I will buy their employer, just for shits and giggles.

4.  Their faces are very interesting.

5.  They either smell really bad or really nice.

6.  Cute little eye crinkles. 

Ha, I said that already.

So, you may ask why I’m sitting here in my hotel room rather than letting cute guys buy me more drinks while I dashingly and flirtatiously offer to sing songs in their honor.

I blame Malia, who thinks it’s wrong to lead married men astray.

Thanks a lot, Malia.  My wanting for you to think well of me meant I spent the majority of my evening listening to bitter Floridians describe how a Jeb presidency is practically inevitable.

Depressing talk about Jeb Bush… Cute eye crinkles… Depressing talk about Jeb Bush…

Fine, depressing talk about Jeb Bush.

I hope you’re happy. 

B. From the Future!

Greetings those of you in the past. I write to inform you that 5:08 will be no worse than 4:08 and will possibly be better.

I know you all appreciate the things I do for you, like traveling to the future to let you know that, at least for another hour, everything will be okay.

Here in the future, otherwise known as Jacksonville, Florida, we’re going on a cruise here in an hour or so.

Mack asked that I bring him back a little somthin’ somethin’. Among my peers, this means some smooches. I’ve had a difficult time overpowering anyone, so I don’t think that’s going to happen.

On the flight down here, I sat next to someone who was working on her third valium and at least her second drink of the day. As you can imagine, she slept most of the flight.

I got a fair way into The Preservationist, which I am liking the hell right out of.

I saw the ocean out my airplane window. I felt like the world is such a beautiful place and I am so small in it.

State Representative Threatens Beloved Local Blogger

I’m about to head to the airport and I haven’t had a chance to hear back from the local blogger under threat and so I’m not going to draw more attention to him here by naming him, but folks, Campfield has for sure crossed a line that is completely and utterly unacceptable.

In a post today, he says:

5. If you work for the state and spend a large chunk of your day surfing the web and complaining about how bad a piece of legislation is, Do you think I should trust you to be non biased when doing an assessment of said legislation? Do you think this is an ethical lapse? Do you think I should trust you when you say you are over worked but seem to have plenty of time to surf the web and author long posts and comments on blogs during time you are getting paid to work? Do you think you would get away with it on a real job?

As far as I know, and I’ve been keeping up on this issue, there’s only been one state employee who’s addressed this issue*.

I don’t know how else to read that but as a threat.

So, just remember that the next time that Campfield is all "Oh, I just want to spark a reasonable discussion about abortion in this state" or the next time someone like Terry Frank is all "Thanks to Campfield for all the hard work he does. If you’re not both hated and loved, you’re really not doing much.": When Campfield was met with legitimate concerns about his legislation from someone he could try to intimidate, he did.

That’s his idea of a reasonable discussion: threatening the livelihoods of his critics. 

 

 

 

*I have no proof that this local blogger spends his day surfing the net or writing blog posts.  The posts I see from him all appear to be timestamped at times outside of work.  If Campfield has other information about this person’s work habits… well, that he can get that information in 24 hours is pretty scary. 

 

Blegh

My bags are almost packed.

I’m trying hard to be be distracted by the thought of half naked scruffy men fighting over me.

I’d like to think that I’ve been much less ridiculous than I usually am before I fly, but that may not be true.

Now I have to go and lay in my bed and stare at the clock.

Today I was convinced that I’d forgotten to make my hotel reservations, just sure as shooting that I was going to get down there and not have a place to stay. 

But it’s okay.  I’ve got a hotel and and flight.

No scruffy men fighting over me, but maybe they’ve got them waiting for me once I get there.

Representative Campfield’s Chicken Salad Recipe

An anonymous source has sent me this chicken salad recipe from Representative Campfield.  Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 chickens
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons prepared Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 red onion, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS


  1. Place chickens in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a
    boil; cover, remove from heat, and let chickens stand in hot water for 10
    to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool, peel and chop.

  2. In a large bowl, combine the chicken, mayonnaise, mustard, dill, paprika,
    onion and salt and pepper. Mash well with a fork or wooden spoon.

  3. Serve on bread as a sandwich or over crisp lettuce as a salad.

 

Snow Deep

I can remember when we lived in the parsonage out in the country and we had a big snow and Dad and I got all dressed up in our winter clothes and went out to take a look at how bad we were snowed in. And I can remember how the wind had blown the snow up between the church and the house in a huge white wave and I could walk on the sidewalk, which had very little snow, under the curl of that wave.

In my mind, that’s always been the most snow ever.

vansnow.jpg

But I was thinking about that when my dad sent me photos of their recent snow, of how the snow blew between the church and the parsonage and he had to dig the van out.

I was four. I was about three feet tall, I imagine, maybe shorter.

I bet that was snow about like what Dad has here..

Things That Made Me Laugh Out Loud

1.  When I got home last night, I had an email from John Edwards with the subject line, “Time to End the War” and my immediate thought was, “Wow, that’d be really cool if he were going to say something like ‘Things have gotten out of hand with the death threats and such and so even though Marcotte and McEwen no longer work for me, I will be contacting [groups x,y, and z] and demanding they call off these vile attacks.  People are angry and I respect that, but death threats have crossed a line that must not be tolerated.'”


Alas, no.  He wants to end the actual war war.


2.  Y’all I got a phone call from someone last night who was all nervous about talking to me because, apparently, there are some folks under the delusion that I have my shit together and just stroll through the streets of Nashville, flowers blooming in my wake, beat poets moved to write snappy poems as I pass by, etc. etc.


That kind of shit is funny just in general, considering, for example, how long I’ve been friends with the Man from GM (over half my life) and how often I’ve ever called him (probably less than ten times) because I’m sure I’m not going to have anything to say.  I rarely call anyone. 


Why?  Because I assume they have other stuff they’d rather do than talk to me.


I don’t know.  It’s just weird when people articulate to you feeling towards you the way that you feel about the world.


It tickled me a great deal.


3.  The coming war with Iran.


I’m sorry.  Everything about that just makes me laugh so damn hard.  I just keep thinking, what if this is finally the time when Bush is being honest with us and he’s so soured everyone on him that no one will listen?


4.  And last, but not least, the funniest thing of all yesterday.


In the comments over at Kleinheider’s, Terry Frank is all like “Campfield made Drudge.  Campfield made Drudge.”  And Abramson says, “Terry, big deal. Blooming idiots get in the newspaper all the time. I mean, there’s even a newspaper that publishes your stuff. Can’t be that hard.” to which Frank replies, “Roger, don’t you have to clean out your purse?”


Oh, that Terry, she’s quite the wit.  I’m sorry, it’s making me laugh right now.  A woman insinuating there’s something wrong with a man carrying a purse.


It’s worth just articulating why this is supposed to be an insult: A man who has a purse is like a woman and it is an insult to say a man is like a woman because being womanly is bad.


What makes it funny is that the subtext of Abramson’s post is “I have strong feelings of dislike for you, Ms. Frank.” and Frank thinks her response is, “Oh, fuck you, Roger” but really, her response is, “Yeah, well I hate me, too, and think that you’d be insulted to be seen as like me in some way.”


That just tickles the shit right out of me.


Sarcastro, the right wing here in Tennessee needs you!  Can’t you freelance yourself out as an insult coach, help these poor folks hone their wit into something that doesn’t bludgeon them first and their opponent second?


 


 

Come On, Own Up

Which one of you conservatives was talking smack about how the recovery in Mississippi was going so well and Louisiana was just a pit of liberal despair and depravity?

Okay, you don’t have to admit it was you.

Just the thought of your face turning red as you read this article about how State Farm isn’t going to write any more new policies in Mississippi and hasn’t decided how many people they’ll stop insuring BECAUSE OF ALL THE LITIGATION, which, I might point out, would not be happening if things were going so swimmingly.

Can we just admit that the recovery efforts for the whole area have been FUBAR since day one? 

Transformations

Well, shoot, being all investigative this morning and then reporting it to you sure has been fun.  But dang, I was disappointed to see that other people’d already thought of that.  It must suck to be a reporter and think you’ve got the inside track on something only to find that everyone else is also flocking there.

Also, it was so cold when I walked the dog this morning that it bothered me when my legs touched my pants, because my pants were freezing.  I have to tell you, when I think about my perfect dog walking outfit, I begin to see a future for myself full of eyes of newt.

Because, in my perfect dog walking outfit for this time of year, I’d have hiking boots with good tread, long underwear, a long, long skirt that had warm petticoats under it, my coat, gloves, and a large brimmed hat to keep the rain and or snow off my face.

It’s true!  I am becoming a witch. 

Stacey Campfield Wants In Your Medical Records

Yes, another post about abortion.  Skip if necessary.

Now Stacey Campfield’s trying to come back all “I’m just making a reasonable suggestion.”  Let’s take a look at his post, shall we? 

1. We give out death certificates to miscarried babies now. It is done
on a weight determination basis. So in the eyes of the state the baby
is (or was) a life.

First, pregnancies are miscarried, not babies or fetuses, or whatever.  If we’re going to talk about scientific things, let’s be sure we’re using our terms correctly.  Second, that didn’t take long for him to go dragging people’s personal tragedies into this did it?   

2. When a person does a heinous crime and beats up A pregnant woman and
kills her and the baby it is a double murder. In other states It is
called Lacy’s law after the Lacy Peterson case. So in the eyes of the
state the baby is (or was) a life. In these cases the child would also
receive a death certificate.

I know it’s inconvenient to his argument, but shall we look at the relevant legislation?   I direct your attention to TN 39-13-214, which informs us that, for the purposes of laws dealing with homicide, “For purposes of this part, ‘another’ and ‘another person’ include a viable fetus of a human being,
when any such term refers to the victim of any act made criminal by the
provisions of this part.” [emphasis mine]

What can we learn from this?  1.  That an assault on a woman that ended her pregnancy is only murder if the fetus is viable and not at any point along the pregnancy.  and 2.  that the state law recognizes that a fetus is not quite a legal person under most circumstances, by the wording “of a human being.”  It isn’t quite yet a human being.  It’s the fetus of one.

Let’s go back to Campfield. 

This bill will give information to the state that is not available now
on how many abortions are given each year as well as information on
race, age, weight.

The first part is a lie.  We know how many abortions are done each year in Tennessee.  That’s information collected by the Health Department. 

The third–age–is also a lie.  We know that.  If you look at TN 39-15-201, if you’re going to perform an abortion in Tennessee, you’d better be damn sure how old that fetus is before you perform the abortion, because depending on how far along the pregnancy is, there are different legal requirements.

 Why is Campfield hung up on the weight of the fetus?  I can’t be sure.

But let’s talk a second about the implications of him wanting to know the race.  You can’t tell the race of a fetus by looking at it.  You could only tell based on the race of the folks who’ve contributed DNA to it.

And here, I think, we see the real motivation behind Campfield’s legislation–it is to collect data, but not on the fetuses; it’s an attempt to backdoor into the private medical records of individual Tennesseans.  Right now, legally, if you have an abortion, the abortion is reported to the state, but the names of the parents are not (TN 68-3-505).   If you miscarry and the fetus is a certain age or weight, a death certificate is issued and the names of the parents are recorded and reported to the state (TN 68-3-505).

If Campfield succeeds in passing this legislation, he’ll have wormed his way into individuals’ private medical records that are legally off-limits to him. 

Makes you think, doesn’t it? 

Can You Pray for Me?

I just wanted to clarify my position on the cruelty of prayer.

I don’t think it’s the praying itself that bothers me.  If you genuinely care about me and you consider prayer your means of asking your god to watch out for me and to let some good things come my way, go for it.  If you see me struggling and you don’t know what else to do and you want to put some good vibes out there in the Universe for me, honestly, I appreciate it.

I regularly ask my ancestors to send good things to folks, like Kleinheider, who I’m sure wish sometimes that I didn’t exist and could give two shits about whether my ancestors existed, but I do that not only for his benefit in some woo-woo way, but also to remind myself that, if I’m going to criticise someone as often as I criticise Carter, I need to be doing it from a position that is open to his criticism in return, that, if I want him to take what I’m saying seriously, I need to seriously consider his perspective.

I think the problem comes, like I said, in the way that folks use prayer to bully people, to march through the world so sure of your rightness and your righteousness that, from the outside, it seems like you almost feel duty bound to impose your religion on the rest of us.

Listen, it’s fine if you believe that your religion is right and true.  I would hope that you’d be firmly convinced of that if you’re going to devote your life to a worldview.  But it is vile to run around imposing your worldview on others.  And that goes for everything from saying things like “All religions are the same and they all point to there being just one god” (as if Christianity is the pinnacle and inevitable conclusion of history) to saying “I think you’re a bad person, therefore I’m going to pray for you” to people you disagree with.

It’s good that you feel like your god is always with you and always on your side, but, and I think I speak for a lot of people here, when you whip your god out like some kind of immutable eternal trump card that lets you be right in every situation?

You come across like a bully, an incredibly cruel bully.

Listen, you have my sympathy.  Christianity is hard to do well.  It requires checking your impulses and, in almost every case, doing the harder thing.  When someone hurts you, it’s easy enough to lash back.  It’s harder to turn the other cheek.  When your enemies have plotted against you, give yourself over to them.  The temptation to believe that you’ve done everything you can and now you’re right enough with the Lord that you can turn your attention to smugly passing judgment on others has got to be great.

And yet, where in the Bible is that allowed?  Instead it’s always, always, it’s about giving yourself over to the transformative power of Christ.  

Running around the world with your fingers pointed at others–“You’re wrong; you need to change; I’ll pray for you to stop being so evil”–completely misses the point of who Christ was talking to. 

So, not only is that kind of behavior completely offensive to non-Christians, it ought to be offensive to Christians as well.  Where in the Bible does Jesus say, “Hey, let’s ignore your behavior and instead go push those guys around?” 

Strange Things Are Happening Every Day

–Kleinheider and I are in agreement on Marcotte.

–Kleinheider and I are in agreement about Abramson

–I have a deep bruise on my foot and I don’t know where it came from.

–I have dark brown hair.  In there used to be these strands of almost translucent red.  You could almost see through them.  I think, and I could be wrong, but I think I’m right, that it’s those red strands that are now going silver.  I’m really at the point where I need to decide if I’m going to just go gray or start dying.  If I could guarantee a brightly silver head of hair, I’d stick with just letting it go naturally, but if it’s going to be gray and dingy, I’d rather stick with brown.

–If we had smell-o-net, I’d totally take a picture/smell stamp of my hair for y’all.  It’ just smells so good and clean and feels so soft and curly.

–Can I tell you something and you promise not to get grossed out?  I haven’t brushed my hair with any regularity since before I met Exador.  I run my fingers through it and condition the shit out of it and take a brush to it on very rare occasions, but otherwise, I just let it alone and it seems to treat me much better than it used to.

Isn’t that weird?  I’ve had curly hair all my life and I’ve yet to understand it.