don knotts is dead

Don Knotts died of lung cancer last night in Los Angeles. Even though my plans to meet him never quite worked out, he was one of my favorite men in the world, and he will be sorely missed. (As coincidence would have it, Linette just today gave me a belated Birthday gift — a frame for the Don Knotts print given to me by my friend Dave in Seattle.) I wish I could have told him this in person, but his work really did improve the quality of my otherwise depressive young life, and I will always appreciate him for that. Here’s hoping that he’s somewhere better now, and that his work is always remembered.

Posted in Art and Culture | 15 Comments

the secret service, not so good at keeping secrets

Well, it looks like I might have been right when I said that Cheney was probably drunk when he shot his buddy in the face the other day. I don’t know that it’s the most trustworthy source, but, if you can believe the folks at Capital Hill Blue, our Vice President was shit-faced when he pulled the trigger… at least according to the members of his Secret Service detail.

update: Capital Hill Blue stands by their story.

Posted in Politics | 8 Comments

from safe, legal, and rare to unsafe, illegal and for the wealthy

I’ve said it before, but if you want ’em you’d better get your abortions now, while you can. It’s not even a month after Alito’s swearing in, and the first domino has already fallen. The South Dakota Senate just voted to approve legislation that would make almost all abortions illegal, an action that will undoubetedly bring Roe v. Wade back in front of the Supreme Court. More troubling than that, however, is the belief by many that if the high court does reverse Roe v. Wade as the law of the land, that the decision as to the legality of abortion will not revert back to the states, as had been the case prior to Roe. According to this school of thought, the moment Roe is overturned, the Congress will seize the opportunity to make abortion illegal throughout the United States. (Clearly that wouldn’t be an enormous problem for women of means, who could travel to Canada, or elsewhere, but it would substantially effect the lives and civil rights of millions.)

Posted in Civil Liberties | 10 Comments

darwin’s to blame

A year or so ago, I posted something here about the claim by anti-evolutionists that school shootings, like those that took place at Columbine, could be explained by the lack of biblical education in the American public school system. “This is what happens,” they maintained, “when God is kept out of the classroom.” These claims of theirs were bolstered in the weeks after the attack by the story that one of the shooters was wearing a “Survival of the Fittest” t-shirt as he made his way through the school, murdering his classmates. At the time, I suspected that the story about the shirt was a convenient fabrication on the part of religious extremists in our country who saw an opportunity to influence public opinion, but it now looks as though that wasn’t the case.

Last night, a man identifying himself as an author working on a book about public school violence and Darwinism, sent me what he claimed was the scan of a page taken from the autopsy of Columbine shooter, Eric Harris. (The section of interest is copied here.) And, after a bit of poking around, I suspect it’s legitimate. I still don’t know that it proves any kind of causal relationship between Darwinism and school violence, but I thought that it was worth mentioning.

As for the fellow who sent it, I was going to e-mail him back and ask what side of the debate he would be approaching this from, but decided to Goggle him first. And, here’s the first quote I found online from Mr. Sherwin Dillard:

The Democratic Party and its presidential candidates for 20 years have embraced Sodomy, infanticide and Socialism.? Jamming scissors into the base of babies skulls at the moment of birth and suctioning out their brains (Partial-Birth Abortion) is something John Kerry has repeatedly voted to continue…

So, I think it’s pretty clear that he’ll be making the case that there is a connection. While it might make for a nice illustration, though, I don’t know how much can really be inferred from the fact that Harris was wearing the shirt. Harris, as you’ll also notice in the same attached blurb, was also wearing one glove at the time of the murders. Does this prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the crimes were perpetrated at the behest of Michael Jackson? Of course not.

All it proves to me is that this one very disturbed individual liked the phrase and found it somehow appropriate for the occasion. It does not say to me, “Darwin has shown me that there is no God, and so these actions can be taken without repercussion.” It also doesn’t give me any reason to believe that the very same Eric Harris, if he were extremely religious, wouldn’t have done the exact same thing in a shirt saying, “Vengeance is mine, sayth the Lord.”

Posted in Religious Extremism | 27 Comments

abe lincoln had a great ass

The folks at Google today announced that they would be launching a philanthropic arm (perhaps to counteract the bad press they’ve been getting recently for acquiescing to the Chinese government and censoring search results). The fund is reported to be approximately $1.1 billion… Closer to home, the big announcement of the day came from our friend Brett Schutzman, who unveiled the most recent tentacle of the Maproom Systems empire, a website constructed for the purposes of exploring the relative “hotness” of American presidents. (The consensus thus far seems to be that Washington was too heavily pockmarked to be considered hot.) I suppose it was just a matter of time.

Posted in Other | 17 Comments

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