From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE…
Nixon was president. A TV cigarette-ad ban went into effect. "Imagine" and "Stairway to Heaven" were on their way to musical immortality. The Colts won Super Bowl V. The New York Times published the Pentagon Papers. Germany's Willy Brandt won the Nobel Peace Prize. Disney World opened. The Oscar for Best Picture went to Patton. The Apollo 15 astronauts rode a dune buggy on the moon. Homosexuality wouldn't be taken off the American Psychiatric Association's list of mental disorders for another two years.
Also in 1971: Californians Derence Kernick and Ed Watson were mutually twitterpated over each other. Forty years later they still are. And they would very very very much like to get married, please. Now. Because time is running out, as Ed explains in a letter to the 9th Circuit Court:
[T]he California Supreme Court denied a motion to speed up the Prop 8 trial. They're going to take their summer recess and come back in around 6 months or so. It must be nice for them.
Thing is, I am 78 years old, and I have Alzheimer's disease. I have been with my partner, Derence, for over 40 years. And if the courts drag this out for months and months, I fear I will, God forbid, lose the ability to recognize my beloved Derence when he gets on his knee to propose to me.
I can't afford that, and Derence deserves better. That's why I agreed to be named in Courage Campaign's amicus curiae letter to the 9th Circuit, asking that the stay be lifted so I can at least have my dignity on our wedding day.
Roughly 18,000 same-sex couples got legally married in California before Prop. 8 snuffed out that right for others. 18,000 married gay couples would certainly be enough to produce the kind of catastrophic damage to the "fabric of society" that the right-wingers constantly get their bloomers in a twist over. It goes without saying (but I'll say it anyway) that California hasn't suffered because of gay marriage---not one bit. And it won’t suffer one bit if the court-imposed "stay" is lifted and couples like Ed and Darence can tie the knot.
Yesterday the New York Times editorial page weighed in on the issue:
The stay should never have been granted in the first place. Applying traditional legal criteria, the extraordinary relief of a stay is only warranted when the applicant makes a strong showing of likely success on the merits and of irreparable injury in the absence of a stay---two arguments that cannot be satisfied here. … Every day same-sex couples are denied their right to marry is another day of injustice for them and their families.
Adds Ezra Klein in The Washington Post on Ed and Darence's situation:
You’ll never see a better example of the fierce urgency of now. … I’m getting married this fall, and I want to be clear: I don’t view these men as a threat to my upcoming marriage. I view them as a model for it.
Please co-sign Ed Watson's letter to the Court here. And let's hope someone there has the presence of mind to recognize a slam-dunk decision when they see one and lift the stay.
Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]
Cheers and Jeers for Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Note: Please, sir or madam, if you would be so kind as to present your boobs for all of us to gaze upon, we shall reciprocate by fulfilling your expectation of receiving a string of multi-hued beads in return. If this sounds like a mutually beneficial transaction, please acquire the proper form from accounting and have it signed by the comptroller. In the subject line, just write in, Whooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!
By the Numbers:
Days 'til the 137th Kentucky Derby: 60
Days `til the Flushing Walleye Festival in Michigan: 3
Portion of Americans who believe Mardi Gras should be a federal holiday: 7-in-10
Return for each dollar that the city of New Orleans spends on Mardi Gras: $4.48
Number of bars in New Orleans: 3,000
(Source: Fast Company)
Reduction in greenhouse gases between 2008 and 2009: 6%
Last time the level was that low: 1995
(Source: EPA via The Week)
Percent of Americans who believe in angels: 75%
Tuesday Words of Wisdom from the Right-wing Blogosphere:
It’s valuable to have a known and trusted source on the scene of important events. That used to be big-media reporters. Now it’s bloggers.
---Glenn Reynolds, in a rare clickable post at Instapundit
All together now: One…two…three… He's right for once!!!
Puppy Pic of the Day: Meanwhile, next door, where the governor actually has a heart…
CHEERS to the shortest story ever told. Once upon a time, Republicans roamed the earth and were full of shit…
House Speaker John Boehner routinely offers this diagnosis of the U.S.’s fiscal condition: “We’re broke; Broke going on bankrupt,” he said in a Feb. 28 speech in Nashville. Boehner’s assessment dominates a debate over the federal budget that could lead to a government shutdown. It is a widely shared view with just one flaw: It’s wrong.
“The U.S. government is not broke,” said Marc Chandler, global head of currency strategy for Brown Brothers Harriman & Co. in New York. “There’s no evidence that the market is treating the U.S. government like it’s broke.” […]
And tax revenue as a percentage of the economy is at a 60-year low, meaning if the government needs to raise cash and can summon the political will, it could do so.
CHEERS to brash
broads babes on the bench. When President Obama nominated Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court, a lot of us here on the left were understandably nervous about how they'd do once they donned their robes and started judicializationing (a word I learned from George Bush). It's still early, to be sure, but this insightful, in-depth USA Today article offers a glimpse of their emerging style:
Sotomayor is far more talkative than was David Souter, the justice she succeeded. Yet she also is asking more pointed questions that reveal her thoughts on the law and her fact-based approach. … Kagan jumps in more regularly, too, than the man who preceded her, John Paul Stevens. She immediately has developed a pattern of piercing questions. Stevens would sometimes gently suggest a point of view, but Kagan more directly lets her colleagues know her line of reasoning and often lays out the liberal viewpoint. […]
"The two newest justices have really changed the dynamic," says Kansas University social psychology professor Lawrence Wrightsman, who has written about Supreme Court oral arguments. "Kagan and Sotomayor seem to have a more detailed and thought-through strategic position in what they say" to lawyers who come before the high court.
To me that's just off-the-charts amazing. That USA Today wrote an insightful, in-depth article, I mean.
CHEERS to shuttle diplomacy. On March 8, 1854, U.S. Commodore Matthew C. Perry reached Japan during his second trip there. (His first words upon landing: "Hey, show us yer boobs! Whooooooo!!!!") He came back with the Kanagawa treaty and a runner-up trophy from the karaoke finals.
CHEERS to what Mainers woke up to this morning. The headline in the Portland Press Herald: Wisconsin Democrats reach out. The subhead: But Republican leaders scoff at the request to resume talks on union rights and the budget. The self-inflicted GOP death spiral continues.
JEERS to the word of the day: "Thud." Last week Newt Gingrich announced he was going to announce that he was forming an exploratory committee in advance of announcing he was planning to run for loser of the 2012 presidential race. This week you could drive a Mack truck through the yawning chasm of indifference that has greeted his BIG NON-ANNOUNCEMENT. I kinda feel sorry for the poor doughboy, so I'll help give him a little boost by posting his web address: www.Ileftmycancerstrickenwifeforanotherwoman. I forget if it ends in .pig or .ass.
P.S. Speaking of Republican adulterers, Senator John Ensign of Nevada---who cheated on his wife with an aide and then paid the aide's husband hush money with, if memory serves, his parents' money---won’t be running for reelection. Apparently only being able to raise 50 bucks for your campaign is what's known in political science circles as "that which renders political scientists mute."
CHEERS to fresh meat. This is pretty cool---scientists say they've created replacement urethras out of "seed cells" from their patients. The breakthrough adds to the growing list of data that suggests we'll be growing our own replacement organs and possibly overcoming that inconvenient immortality barrier. It also means we'll finally have a non-invasive way of eating a census taker's liver with fava beans and a nice Chianti. [ThpThpThp!]
CHEERS to buyers' remorse. Glenn Beck's days at Fox News appear to be numbered. He'll likely be gone by December. [Sniff!] I don’t know how I'm going to handle the sudden transition from acute nonchalance to chronic apathy. Up my dosage of Shrugitol, I expect.
Four years ago in C&J: March 8, 2007
BON VOYAJEE to the boy king. President Bush is now in South America on a "goodwill tour." He was greeted by thousands of well-wishers, who burned a "goodwill effigy" in his honor before they were themselves treated to a large cloud of "goodwill tear gas." Just one big party down there, ain’t it?
CHEERS to The Stupids. It’s a rule that’s as simple as it is golden: Don’t mess with a federal prosecutor. So what have Republicans from both Congress and the Bush administration gone and done? They’ve messed with eight federal prosecutors at once!" Sometimes all you can do is bow down in awe.
And just one more…
CHEERS to the Cone of Awesome. Southern Mainers---and the summer tourists who visit here---rejoice! Ten months after a fire gutted (well, more like melted) Red's Dairy Freeze, the go-to place for ice cream in South Portland since 1966, the joint is hoppin' again. And, of course, those obnoxious union types just had to elbow their way past the common folk to get at their precious softees:
The guests of honor were firefighters who responded to the fire before dawn on May 16. First in line at the walk-up window was South Portland firefighter Chris Swenson. On the morning of the fire, he and firefighter Josh Perry broke in the back door of Red's and entered the hot, dark and smoky space.
On Friday, Swenson ordered a triple-chocolate Boston, one of Red's signature shakes topped with ice cream and sauce. "I love it!" cried Kathlean Peters from behind the counter. "Step aside. Let's get the next guy up."
I now pronounce the world...whole again.
It's Twofer Tuesday---grab any two items from your neighbor's shed and slap your name on it! Floor's open...What are you cheering and jeering about today?
Today's Shameless C&J Testimonial:
"Bill in Portland Maine is going to be king of the world before this is all said and done and he is most likely the Beast spoken of in the Revelation."