My new blog, Calitics
We talk about California politics and California generally. I'll try to post random thoughts on this site occasionally.
Spend Now, Pay Later! Will the Good Times Never End? May the future generations enjoy our debt...
Two gay teenagers were publicly executed in Iran on 19 July 2005 for the 'crime' of homosexuality.
The youths were hanged in Edalat (Justice) Square in the city of Mashhad, in north east Iran. They were sentenced to death by Court No. 19.
Iran enforces Islamic Sharia law, which dictates the death penalty for gay sex.
And Joe Wilson has no right to complain. And I think people like Tim Russert and the others, who gave this guy such a free ride and all the media, they're the ones to be shot, not Karl Rove. Listen, maybe Karl Rove was not perfect. We live in an imperfect world. And I give him credit for having the guts.
Graduates, if you will indulge me for a moment, let me paint a picture of what it's like out there. The last four or, for some of you, five years you've been living in a fantasyland, running around, talking about Hemingway, or Clancy, or, I don't know, I mean whatever you read here at Harvard. The novelization of `The Matrix,' I don't know. I don't know what you do here.
'But I do know this. You're about to enter into a world filled with hypocrisy and doublespeak, a world in which your limo to the airport is often a half hour late. In addition to not even being a limo at all; oftentimes it's a Lincoln Town Car. You're about to enter a world where you ask your new assistant, Jamie, to bring you a tall nonfat latte. And he comes back with a short soy cappuccino. Guess what, Jamie? You're fired. Not too hard to get right, my friend...
'As you set off into the world, don't be afraid to question your leaders. But don't ask too many questions at one time or that are too hard, because your leaders get tired and/or cranky. All of you sitting here have the brightest futures ahead. Many of you will go on to stellar careers and various pursuits. And four of you---and I'm not at liberty to say which four---will go on to star in the porno industry.
'One of the challenges you will be faced with is finding a job in our depressed economy. In fact, the chances of landing a decent job are about as good as finding weapons of mass destruction in the Iraqi desert. Slim and none. And Slim just left the building. In fact, the closest thing I found to looking like a weapon of mass destruction is the turd that Dick Cheney left in the Oval Office toilet about an hour ago. On that note, God bless and happy graduation.'
Will Ferrell Commencement Address
Harvard University, 2003
But, of course, the Christian activists aren't vague in their opposition. For them, the issue isn't one of civil rights, because the term implies something inherent in the individual -- being black, say, or a woman -- and they deny that homosexuality is inherent. It can't be, because that would mean God had created some people who are damned from birth, morally blackened. This really is the inescapable root of the whole issue, the key to understanding those working against gay marriage as well as the engine driving their vehicle in the larger culture war: the commitment, on the part of a growing number of people, to a variety of religious belief that is so thoroughgoing it permeates every facet of life and thought, that rejects the secular, pluralistic grounding of society and that answers all questions internally.
After the 1989 passage of the registered-partner law, the marriage rate continued to climb; Danish heterosexual marriage rates are now the highest they've been since the early 1970's. And the most recent marriage rates in Sweden, Norway, and Iceland are all higher than the rates for the years before the partner laws were passed. Furthermore, in the 1990s, divorce rates in Scandinavia remained basically unchanged.
Roughly half of all children in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark are now born to unmarried parents. In Denmark, the number of cohabiting couples with children rose by 25 percent in the 1990s. From these statistics Kurtz concludes that " … married parenthood has become a minority phenomenon," and—surprise—he blames gay marriage.
But Kurtz's interpretation of the statistics is incorrect. Parenthood within marriage is still the norm—most cohabitating couples marry after they start having children. In Sweden, for instance, 70 percent of cohabiters wed after their first child is born. Indeed, in Scandinavia the majority of families with children are headed by married parents. In Denmark and Norway, roughly four out of five couples with children were married in 2003. In the Netherlands, a bit south of Scandinavia, 90 percent of heterosexual couples with kids are married.