October #1 rambling: recovery mode

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival will commission 36 playwrights to translate all of Shakespeare’s plays into modern English.

wrong reenactment
Still on the mend, wearing this band around my waist, until at least November 9. I will write about this eventually.

I’ve managed to watch more baseball in the past week and a half than I saw the entire regular season. Great to see former Met Rusty Staub after his heart attack. Rooting for the Mets, or if they get eliminated, the Cubs. Just realized that the World Series Game 5 would be November. If it’s the Dodgers in the Series, I’m rooting for the American League team.

ALSO, my office is moving this week. Note to self: do NOT pick up anything over 20 pounds.

Understanding Mass Incarceration and Bringing It Down: An Interview With James Kilgore.

John Oliver: rips GOP candidates for blaming gun violence on mental illness in absence of a plan, and Migrants and Refugees.

Color film was made for white people.

The War on Science, even in Canada.

Seth Meyers explains that ridiculous Congressional hearing over Planned Parenthood and Planned Parenthood’s “Government Funding”: The Same Kind Your Doctor Receives.

What the Speakership Battle is About.

Pope Francis met with an openly gay couple — and unlike Kim Davis, who ambushed him, he did so intentionally, and Was Pope Francis Actually Swindled into Meeting Kim Davis?

If we gotta honor a Christopher…

“Sick of hearing about the damn emails.”

Analysis Ranks Presidential Candidates By Their Supporters’ Grammar.

It costs you $43 every time you wait for the doctor.

What Happens When There’s No Internet. Presented By BuzzFeed & Hyundai – is it real?

Sweden is shifting to a 6-hour work day.

Shakespeare in Modern English? “The Oregon Shakespeare Festival… recently announced that over the next three years, it will commission 36 playwrights to translate all of Shakespeare’s plays into modern English.”

Chaz Ebert reviews the play BlackWhite Love, about Roger and Chaz Ebert.

How to Make a Sandwich. It only took 6 months and cost $1500.

K-Chuck Radio’s Sunshine Pop includes rare music from Mary Hopkin and Victor Garber.

New 2015 remix and video of Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson’s 1983 international smash hit single ‘Say Say Say’.

Van Morrison and the Thirty-One Songs about Nothing But a Bad Contract.

Mark Evanier continues to list the twenty top voice actors in American animated cartoons between 1928 and 1968, including Hans Conried (Snidely Whiplash), Don Messick (Scooby-Doo) Alan Reed (Fred Flintstone), Jack Mercer (Popeye), and Gary Owens (Space Ghost, Roger Ramjet).


It’s so very nice that Eddie the Renaissance Geek wished me well after my surgery, given the fact that he’s had much more serious health issues of his own.

Albany High hosts tours in advance of vote on improvements.

What’s the last comic book or graphic novel you picked up at a comic book store? Also, The Big Event effect.

SamuraiFrog: Ant-Man and the Book Light Lady.

Donna’s quote resonated.


New national role for Biscovey head teacher. “Roger Green is one of 70 heads across the country…”

The unfortunate case of Kim Davis

The attacks on Kim Davis because of her hair or clothing are just sexist, classist, and mean-spirited .

Kim DavisFame is a fascinating thing to me. In August 2015, three Americans received France’s top honor for stopping an armed attacker on a train. In September 2015, Alek Skarlatos, one of those three men, is slated to be a contestant on ABC-TV’s Dancing with the Stars.

In June 2015, Kimberly Jean Bailey Davis was an obscure elected county clerk for little Rowan County, Kentucky, population of less than 24,000. Now she’s a lightning rod in the culture wars. She “defied a U.S. Federal Court order requiring that she issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples following the Obergefell v. Hodges U.S. Supreme Court case that legalized same-sex marriage in the United States.”

Kim Davis has been criticized for not doing her job.

From Snopes:

Four couples [have] sued Rowan County and its clerk, Kim Davis, for refusing to issue marriage licenses because of Davis’ religious objections to the U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage.

Davis is obligated by law to issue a marriage license to all qualified applicants, which now includes same-sex couples, the plaintiffs said. By “promoting a particular religious belief” at the Rowan County courthouse, Davis has “acted maliciously, with callous disregard for, or with reckless indifference to, the clearly established rights” of the plaintiffs, they said.

The argument that an elected official could not be allowed to ban the registration of a gun because weapons are against his or her religion, or keep women from driving on the same grounds, is a compelling point. This great West Wing clip frames the argument well. That she’s been married four times – she remarried husband #2 – and therefore is a hypocrite, is true – as the evil Westboro Baptist church has pointed out – though it is rather beside the point, as a matter of law.

But the attacks on Kim Davis because of her hair or clothing or weight or looking marginally like Dick Cheney are just sexist, classist, and mean-spirited, and lowers the tenor of the conversation. We need to be able to call out her bigotry without slut-shaming or hillbilly-shaming.

She has been held up as some sort of martyr for “oppressed” Christians, more so since she was temporarily sent to jail. Judge David Bunning, son of baseball Hall of Fame pitcher and former US Senator Jim Bunning, explained why he rejected her argument. “The [marriage license] form does not require the county clerk to condone or endorse same-sex marriage on religious or moral grounds. It simply asks the county clerk to certify that the information provided is accurate and that the couple is qualified to marry under Kentucky law. Davis’ religious convictions have no bearing on this purely legal inquiry.”

(Yeesh, Kim Davis supporters gather outside the judge’s home to hold him ‘in contempt of God’s court’. Whatever THAT means.)

Moreover, “While religious institutions are guaranteed protections against any government regulation or involvement in their religious life, the government is also protected from religious institutions attempt to garner political power over the nation. What this means is that anyone who functions as an agent of the state must remain religiously neutral, providing equal service, treatment, and rights to all people of all religious, ethical, social, and cultural backgrounds.”

Kim Davis and others have compared her stance to that of black civil rights icon Rosa Parks. I would argue she is the bus driver who refused to restart the bus until Rosa gave up her seat to a white man. Many gay rights advocates believe Davis has done the gay rights movement a huge favor by laying “bare the prejudiced, discriminatory beliefs that fuel the ‘religious liberty’ fire.”

Trump did NOT say this!
Trump did NOT say this!

Theoretically, there should be a compromise. Under Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act, “both public and private employers have a duty to exempt religious employees from generally applicable work rules, so long as this won’t create an ‘undue hardship’.”

This is a very important principle, which would allow a Muslim woman to wear a hijab or a Sikh man to wear a dastaar, if it didn’t interfere with the task. As an elected official, it wouldn’t apply to Kim Davis, though Kentucky’s religious freedom law might come into play.

If she is objecting to “issuing licenses with her name on them, because she believes (rightly or wrongly) that having her name on them is an endorsement of same-sex marriage,” there may be a mechanism “modifying the prescribed Kentucky marriage license form to remove the multiple references to Davis’ name,” – assuming it hasn’t already been done – “and thus to remove the personal nature of the authorization that Davis must provide on the current form.”

Just yesterday, her lawyer repeated the assertion that those licenses issued by her deputy clerks were invalid, and “those responsible for issuing the licenses without authorization could face ‘criminal penalties.'” After giving her every scintilla of the benefit of the doubt, this position proves to me, without question, that the issue is not really about the religious freedom of Kim Davis, but rather the religious tyranny of her and her followers.

The larger point is that the system, as it has, must continue to allow couples in Rowan County, KY the opportunity to marry, which the Supreme Court declared is a fundamental right as early as 1888.

Related: this pictured quote attributed to Donald Trump about Kim Davis is untrue. HE DIDN’T SAY IT, and in fact, was largely unaware of the issue until very recently. The Donald makes many inflammatory statements but does not need to be defamed by Facebook pranks.

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