spirithorse21: (CSA)
Today in the headlines: Rain's toll on crops heavy

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080611/BUSINESS/806110391

Indiana has been hit by devastating storms this past week, as has most of the midwest since about Mid April. Farmers further west of here haven't been able to get their fields planted or have suffered great losses from the rains. Farmers here in Indiana had their crops in, but now thousands of acres of land are underwater and probably lost for the season.

This in contrast with sky rocketing crop prices--due in part to the weather, and in part to eco fuels. Farmers over the past few seasons have been clamoring for more land to plant as they want to reap the benefits of high yields and high prices. Of course, the prices are soaring even higher now that so many fields have been devastated. The few who manage to pull this growing season off in even an average way will be seeing a bumper year in profits.

It just strikes me as an interesting paradox. Just last night I was reading my June edition of Progressive Farmer, which features an article about farmers removing their lands from the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) and putting those acres to crop. Why? It would be stupid not to, from an economic standpoint. The prices of crops versus the pay out from the CRP is too great! For many years, it was smart to keep land in the CRP--they paid well, often much better than the open market would for crops. But now, as demand raises the price of corn, soybeans, wheat, and other crops, farmer are making the only smart economic choice they have--plant those fields.

Yet here we are. Land prices are astronomical, crop prices are the best they've ever been, and most of the land in the midwest is underwater! What a paradox. What a very sad paradox. My heart goes out to all the farmer that will be hurting this year due to the weather. On a brief tour of our land on Sunday, it appears that we will be fine. Our land is on high ground with exceptionally good tile under it. Everything is draining well and the crops look great. Our one disaster is the hay field. It is our first year growing our own hay. While the field looks great, we have yet to get in for our first cutting because the water content is so high and because of the exceptionally wet weather.
spirithorse21: (CSA)
Today in the headlines: Rain's toll on crops heavy

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080611/BUSINESS/806110391

Indiana has been hit by devastating storms this past week, as has most of the midwest since about Mid April. Farmers further west of here haven't been able to get their fields planted or have suffered great losses from the rains. Farmers here in Indiana had their crops in, but now thousands of acres of land are underwater and probably lost for the season.

This in contrast with sky rocketing crop prices--due in part to the weather, and in part to eco fuels. Farmers over the past few seasons have been clamoring for more land to plant as they want to reap the benefits of high yields and high prices. Of course, the prices are soaring even higher now that so many fields have been devastated. The few who manage to pull this growing season off in even an average way will be seeing a bumper year in profits.

It just strikes me as an interesting paradox. Just last night I was reading my June edition of Progressive Farmer, which features an article about farmers removing their lands from the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) and putting those acres to crop. Why? It would be stupid not to, from an economic standpoint. The prices of crops versus the pay out from the CRP is too great! For many years, it was smart to keep land in the CRP--they paid well, often much better than the open market would for crops. But now, as demand raises the price of corn, soybeans, wheat, and other crops, farmer are making the only smart economic choice they have--plant those fields.

Yet here we are. Land prices are astronomical, crop prices are the best they've ever been, and most of the land in the midwest is underwater! What a paradox. What a very sad paradox. My heart goes out to all the farmer that will be hurting this year due to the weather. On a brief tour of our land on Sunday, it appears that we will be fine. Our land is on high ground with exceptionally good tile under it. Everything is draining well and the crops look great. Our one disaster is the hay field. It is our first year growing our own hay. While the field looks great, we have yet to get in for our first cutting because the water content is so high and because of the exceptionally wet weather.
spirithorse21: (Default)
From The International Herald Tribune:

"Dutrow was criticized after acknowledging he used an anabolic steroid on Big Brown, then said last week that the horse hadn't had a dose of Winstrol since April. The drug is legal in the three states where the Triple Crown races are run.

"By this time next year, steroids will be banned from horse racing competition," Alex Waldrop, president and chief executive of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, said Sunday. "The Big Brown campaign only underscores the need to act to ensure the safety of the horses and to remove any suspicion concerning steroid involvement with our stars."

On the advice of Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel, Dutrow had said he was going to reduce Big Brown's dose of electrolytes, which are salts such as sodium, chloride and potassium that help prevent dehydration. It wasn't clear whether he followed through on that plan before the Belmont.

Big Brown was taking Lasix, a legal anti-bleeding medication that can cause a horse to become dehydrated. Highs were in the 90s and there was oppressive humidity Saturday. Several horses throughout the day were sweating excessively and needed to be cooled off with buckets of water and sprayed with hoses after they ran."


I didn't watch the Belmont, I had more exciting things to do. But I did hear the outcome and I can tell you, I was dancing in the streets (Literally. I was at a casino and the walkway was a "street"). I was sad to learn that Casino Drive was scratched, but happy they did right by the colt. In watching the Belmont on You Tube later, I was also pleased with jockey Kent Desormeaux for doing right by Big Brown.

In my opinion, there were four factors that ultimately led to BBs dead last finish:
1. His pedigree. He was bred for sprinting. Neither the Belmont nor the Triple Crown is for sprinters. A horse must have endurance to complete this marathon.

2. The Steroids. I honestly don't think BB was that great of a horse. Big and beautiful, with lots of muscle, but nothing outstanding. Had this been a race of all the TC winners, BB would have been dead last there too. Instead, he came in dead last racing against a bunch of so-so horses (not to diminish Da-Tera. Wow! Very impressive that he ran wire to wire!). I think we finally saw the real BB and his real abilities without the steroids.

3. The Heat. It was hot out there folks! My mom watched the race and she said later that she found it odd that the other contenders were sweating profusely before the race, but that BB was dry. Was he ok with the heat? Or was he dehydrated? Or worse, was he not sweating due to some sort of metabolic problem? All of that aside, it was hot! That's tough for any athlete, and BB is a BIG horse with A LOT of muscle.

4. The Campaign. Three big races in five weeks. That is a very grueling schedule for a race horse, especially a three year old. BB was not fresh coming into the Belmont and I think that played a big role in this. Add to that a pedigree for sprinting, the heat, and his lack of steroids...well, he came in dead last.

I don't really think he would have come in dead last had Desormeaux let him keep racing. Probably 5th, I think. But since the jockey realized his horse had nothing left to give and they weren't going to win, place, or show, he eased the colt up and cantered him home. I think that was a sage decision, very healthy for the horse at any rate.

Now that I've dissected the race, let's move onto that section I pulled from the news story.

"By this time next year, steroids will be banned from horse racing competition," Alex Waldrop, president and chief executive of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, said Sunday. "The Big Brown campaign only underscores the need to act to ensure the safety of the horses and to remove any suspicion concerning steroid involvement with our stars."

Wow! I hope he means it. I think that would be great. I really thought it would take another (read: Big Brown) dead horse before any regulation changes were handed down, but it seems that a lot of people were repulsed by Dutrow, his bragging, and his training techniques. Karma's a bitch and I think Dutrow got what's coming to him. But I'm also glad to see this statement and I hope they mean it. That would be one good step forward. Let's see if they can keep pacing down the right road.

ETA: Here's another good article, also from The New York Times. Love the last line.
spirithorse21: (Default)
From The International Herald Tribune:

"Dutrow was criticized after acknowledging he used an anabolic steroid on Big Brown, then said last week that the horse hadn't had a dose of Winstrol since April. The drug is legal in the three states where the Triple Crown races are run.

"By this time next year, steroids will be banned from horse racing competition," Alex Waldrop, president and chief executive of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, said Sunday. "The Big Brown campaign only underscores the need to act to ensure the safety of the horses and to remove any suspicion concerning steroid involvement with our stars."

On the advice of Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel, Dutrow had said he was going to reduce Big Brown's dose of electrolytes, which are salts such as sodium, chloride and potassium that help prevent dehydration. It wasn't clear whether he followed through on that plan before the Belmont.

Big Brown was taking Lasix, a legal anti-bleeding medication that can cause a horse to become dehydrated. Highs were in the 90s and there was oppressive humidity Saturday. Several horses throughout the day were sweating excessively and needed to be cooled off with buckets of water and sprayed with hoses after they ran."


I didn't watch the Belmont, I had more exciting things to do. But I did hear the outcome and I can tell you, I was dancing in the streets (Literally. I was at a casino and the walkway was a "street"). I was sad to learn that Casino Drive was scratched, but happy they did right by the colt. In watching the Belmont on You Tube later, I was also pleased with jockey Kent Desormeaux for doing right by Big Brown.

In my opinion, there were four factors that ultimately led to BBs dead last finish:
1. His pedigree. He was bred for sprinting. Neither the Belmont nor the Triple Crown is for sprinters. A horse must have endurance to complete this marathon.

2. The Steroids. I honestly don't think BB was that great of a horse. Big and beautiful, with lots of muscle, but nothing outstanding. Had this been a race of all the TC winners, BB would have been dead last there too. Instead, he came in dead last racing against a bunch of so-so horses (not to diminish Da-Tera. Wow! Very impressive that he ran wire to wire!). I think we finally saw the real BB and his real abilities without the steroids.

3. The Heat. It was hot out there folks! My mom watched the race and she said later that she found it odd that the other contenders were sweating profusely before the race, but that BB was dry. Was he ok with the heat? Or was he dehydrated? Or worse, was he not sweating due to some sort of metabolic problem? All of that aside, it was hot! That's tough for any athlete, and BB is a BIG horse with A LOT of muscle.

4. The Campaign. Three big races in five weeks. That is a very grueling schedule for a race horse, especially a three year old. BB was not fresh coming into the Belmont and I think that played a big role in this. Add to that a pedigree for sprinting, the heat, and his lack of steroids...well, he came in dead last.

I don't really think he would have come in dead last had Desormeaux let him keep racing. Probably 5th, I think. But since the jockey realized his horse had nothing left to give and they weren't going to win, place, or show, he eased the colt up and cantered him home. I think that was a sage decision, very healthy for the horse at any rate.

Now that I've dissected the race, let's move onto that section I pulled from the news story.

"By this time next year, steroids will be banned from horse racing competition," Alex Waldrop, president and chief executive of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, said Sunday. "The Big Brown campaign only underscores the need to act to ensure the safety of the horses and to remove any suspicion concerning steroid involvement with our stars."

Wow! I hope he means it. I think that would be great. I really thought it would take another (read: Big Brown) dead horse before any regulation changes were handed down, but it seems that a lot of people were repulsed by Dutrow, his bragging, and his training techniques. Karma's a bitch and I think Dutrow got what's coming to him. But I'm also glad to see this statement and I hope they mean it. That would be one good step forward. Let's see if they can keep pacing down the right road.

ETA: Here's another good article, also from The New York Times. Love the last line.
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
Sorry for being so prolific this morning. I just felt each story required it's own post. So, three in a row it was.

More headlines from the Indianapolis Star, this time concerning California's ruling on gay marriage: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/G/GAY_MARRIAGE?SITE=ININS&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Actually, I heard about this news story yesterday on the radio, where a conservative spokesperson was quoted, saying that the California Supreme Court had overstepped its bounds and created legislature from the bench. Personally, I think this is a bunch of bull. The conservatives in California are just pissed that the the court followed its logical course and found that a ban on gay marriage was unlawful. They did not enact a law for gay marriage. They used precedent from a 1948 case to say that if it is unlawful to ban interracial marriage, then it is also unlawful to ban gay marriage.

Alle-freakin-luia! Personally, I think it's about time that the government got its nose out of the business of marriage. Gays have just as much a right to get married as any other couple, and quite frankly, this government has a whole lot more to worry about than who wants to marry who. Let's name a few: Taxes, Education, This Stupid Freakin War, Immigration, Foreign relations...

I think i could go on for a while, but it's not really necessary. I am glad to see that the California court saw fit to rule against the gay marriage ban. It will be interesting to see where things go from here. It looks like the public will be set to vote on the constitutionality of gay marriage in the fall. If California does vote that gay marriage is unconstitutional, it will be interesting to see where things go in the court from there. But really? it's inevitable that gays will earn the right to marry (which, they should! It's ridiculous that they have to earn it!), why do we fight it so?
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
Sorry for being so prolific this morning. I just felt each story required it's own post. So, three in a row it was.

More headlines from the Indianapolis Star, this time concerning California's ruling on gay marriage: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/G/GAY_MARRIAGE?SITE=ININS&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Actually, I heard about this news story yesterday on the radio, where a conservative spokesperson was quoted, saying that the California Supreme Court had overstepped its bounds and created legislature from the bench. Personally, I think this is a bunch of bull. The conservatives in California are just pissed that the the court followed its logical course and found that a ban on gay marriage was unlawful. They did not enact a law for gay marriage. They used precedent from a 1948 case to say that if it is unlawful to ban interracial marriage, then it is also unlawful to ban gay marriage.

Alle-freakin-luia! Personally, I think it's about time that the government got its nose out of the business of marriage. Gays have just as much a right to get married as any other couple, and quite frankly, this government has a whole lot more to worry about than who wants to marry who. Let's name a few: Taxes, Education, This Stupid Freakin War, Immigration, Foreign relations...

I think i could go on for a while, but it's not really necessary. I am glad to see that the California court saw fit to rule against the gay marriage ban. It will be interesting to see where things go from here. It looks like the public will be set to vote on the constitutionality of gay marriage in the fall. If California does vote that gay marriage is unconstitutional, it will be interesting to see where things go in the court from there. But really? it's inevitable that gays will earn the right to marry (which, they should! It's ridiculous that they have to earn it!), why do we fight it so?
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
Today, the Indianapolis Star wrote an editorial about farm subsidies: http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080516/OPINION08/805160390/1291/OPINION08

I have mixed feelings about this whole thing. I myself want to be a farmer. My mother grew up on a farm and continues to manage the few hundred that remain. I have friends who farm and make it their living. No farmer that I know is making $90K a year. Yes, they are making a living, but it's no better than the average Joe with a desk job. Maybe $50K a year. That's not a lot considering the expenses and unpredictability that accompany farming. And raising a family these days is getting more and more expensive. It's a tough market and a tough time. Yes, crop prices are sky rocketing, but so is the price of fuel, land, and taxes. It's hard for a farmer who has 2500 acres or less to get by--especially if that's the only income. So in that sense, I think the small (yes, 2500 acres is small!) family farmer probably needs some sort of subsidies to get by.

However, I have also been reading about and discussing with fellow farmers that the soaring crop prices are drawing out irresponsible decisions from new and experienced farmers alike. They battle it out at land auctions, raising the price of tillable land near to that of land being sold for development. Folks, your average farmer is going to have a tough time paying the mortgage every month on $50K a year. When farmers fight over land and make irresponsible decisions about how much debt they can manage, I don't agree that the government should bail them out. They need to be more responsible. You don't see our government bailing out the thousands of families that purchase homes they can't afford. Can't pay your house mortgage? Bank takes your house. Yes, I know that can happen to farmers too, but these subsides can keep them afloat a lot longer, and on the taxpayers dime to boot.

Furthermore, the corporate farmer with many more thousands of acres who really does make $90K and more per year...folks, no one making $90K or more a year needs help from the government. They're making it very well on their own.

But it's kind of hard to give hand outs to only the family farmer who is responsible. So what do we do? I have long stood by farm subsides, but even I admit this doesn't look like a good plan. This country is struggling in so many ways. Perhaps it's time for the farmers to stand on their own. I don't know. Like I said, I have mixed feelings.
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
Today, the Indianapolis Star wrote an editorial about farm subsidies: http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080516/OPINION08/805160390/1291/OPINION08

I have mixed feelings about this whole thing. I myself want to be a farmer. My mother grew up on a farm and continues to manage the few hundred that remain. I have friends who farm and make it their living. No farmer that I know is making $90K a year. Yes, they are making a living, but it's no better than the average Joe with a desk job. Maybe $50K a year. That's not a lot considering the expenses and unpredictability that accompany farming. And raising a family these days is getting more and more expensive. It's a tough market and a tough time. Yes, crop prices are sky rocketing, but so is the price of fuel, land, and taxes. It's hard for a farmer who has 2500 acres or less to get by--especially if that's the only income. So in that sense, I think the small (yes, 2500 acres is small!) family farmer probably needs some sort of subsidies to get by.

However, I have also been reading about and discussing with fellow farmers that the soaring crop prices are drawing out irresponsible decisions from new and experienced farmers alike. They battle it out at land auctions, raising the price of tillable land near to that of land being sold for development. Folks, your average farmer is going to have a tough time paying the mortgage every month on $50K a year. When farmers fight over land and make irresponsible decisions about how much debt they can manage, I don't agree that the government should bail them out. They need to be more responsible. You don't see our government bailing out the thousands of families that purchase homes they can't afford. Can't pay your house mortgage? Bank takes your house. Yes, I know that can happen to farmers too, but these subsides can keep them afloat a lot longer, and on the taxpayers dime to boot.

Furthermore, the corporate farmer with many more thousands of acres who really does make $90K and more per year...folks, no one making $90K or more a year needs help from the government. They're making it very well on their own.

But it's kind of hard to give hand outs to only the family farmer who is responsible. So what do we do? I have long stood by farm subsides, but even I admit this doesn't look like a good plan. This country is struggling in so many ways. Perhaps it's time for the farmers to stand on their own. I don't know. Like I said, I have mixed feelings.
spirithorse21: (Default)
Today in the headlines: http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080418/LOCAL18/804180442#

I can't remember how long the "In God We Trust" license plates have been out. A couple of years, I think? Anyway, they were popping up on *everyone's* cars and many people began to think that they were the new official plate for Indiana, I among them. And it made angry. Jeremy was the one who picked up our plates last year and I told him if the God plates were indeed the official plate, to ask for a different one, such as the environmental plate.

See, even though I believe in God, and do in fact trust in God, I also believe in the separation of church and state. And if the State of Indiana was endorsing this plate as the official one, well, that's just not right.

I learned that the plate was not official soon after that, but that they weren't charging extra for it either. I'm not sure how I feel about that. It seems like an endorsement to me. And apparently, the ACLU agreed. Wednesday's ruling against the ACLU is somewhat troubling to me. I still think the state government is endorsing this God plate, and thus breaking down the separation. It's not a critical thing, and people are still free to choose, but yet...

I don't know. Like I said, it's not critical. But I do think they're breaking down some boundaries that are better left alone.
spirithorse21: (Default)
Today in the headlines: http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080418/LOCAL18/804180442#

I can't remember how long the "In God We Trust" license plates have been out. A couple of years, I think? Anyway, they were popping up on *everyone's* cars and many people began to think that they were the new official plate for Indiana, I among them. And it made angry. Jeremy was the one who picked up our plates last year and I told him if the God plates were indeed the official plate, to ask for a different one, such as the environmental plate.

See, even though I believe in God, and do in fact trust in God, I also believe in the separation of church and state. And if the State of Indiana was endorsing this plate as the official one, well, that's just not right.

I learned that the plate was not official soon after that, but that they weren't charging extra for it either. I'm not sure how I feel about that. It seems like an endorsement to me. And apparently, the ACLU agreed. Wednesday's ruling against the ACLU is somewhat troubling to me. I still think the state government is endorsing this God plate, and thus breaking down the separation. It's not a critical thing, and people are still free to choose, but yet...

I don't know. Like I said, it's not critical. But I do think they're breaking down some boundaries that are better left alone.
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
Today in the news, we find more analysis of the democratic presidential candidates. As the Pennsylvania primary draws near, and the Indiana and North Carolina primaries aren't far behind, the Indy star decided it was time to take a closer look at Clinton and Obama.

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080416/NEWS0502/804160481

These poll findings give me hope. I am an avid Obama supporter and I think he could lend this country some truly fresh perspectives on many issues and policy. I am especially elated to hear that he actually has a lead here in Indiana as I was fairly certain the state would go to Clinton instead. But what I find most interesting is this little excerpt:

Clinton also suffers from being seen as less admirable than Obama. Even in Pennsylvania, 47% of Democrats said he had more honesty and integrity, compared with 26% who thought that of Clinton.

"She doesn't tell the truth a lot," said Brannon Crace, a store manager in Frankfurt, Ind. "We've already been through the Clinton era."


The general public recognizes that Hilary Clinton has lied to us often. Yet she is still a strong candidate in this race. I find that scary. Very scary. Why would we want a liar leading our country? It certainly hasn't done us a whole lot of good for the past 8 years. I don't think we should repeat that mistake. And yet, people are charmed by her. She's a good public speaker. She has experience. She has a charming husband (he must be very charming if she stayed with him after his little scandle!). She talks a good talk when it comes to health care. But she's also ruthless. I would even call her power hungry. I don't think she'll make a good president, but what worries me more is that she'll do anything to win this race. Anything.

That alone is enough to make me support Obama. I want to see what he'll do in the office. I don't think we can do much worse than we are now, even with Clinton. So why not let the man have a go at it? But I'm not just a passive supporter. I think he has a strong health care plan and good ideas for our job situation and economy. I want to give him a chance to clean up this mess in the middle east and see if he can restore America's name with the rest of the world. I hope. I really hope.
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
Today in the news, we find more analysis of the democratic presidential candidates. As the Pennsylvania primary draws near, and the Indiana and North Carolina primaries aren't far behind, the Indy star decided it was time to take a closer look at Clinton and Obama.

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080416/NEWS0502/804160481

These poll findings give me hope. I am an avid Obama supporter and I think he could lend this country some truly fresh perspectives on many issues and policy. I am especially elated to hear that he actually has a lead here in Indiana as I was fairly certain the state would go to Clinton instead. But what I find most interesting is this little excerpt:

Clinton also suffers from being seen as less admirable than Obama. Even in Pennsylvania, 47% of Democrats said he had more honesty and integrity, compared with 26% who thought that of Clinton.

"She doesn't tell the truth a lot," said Brannon Crace, a store manager in Frankfurt, Ind. "We've already been through the Clinton era."


The general public recognizes that Hilary Clinton has lied to us often. Yet she is still a strong candidate in this race. I find that scary. Very scary. Why would we want a liar leading our country? It certainly hasn't done us a whole lot of good for the past 8 years. I don't think we should repeat that mistake. And yet, people are charmed by her. She's a good public speaker. She has experience. She has a charming husband (he must be very charming if she stayed with him after his little scandle!). She talks a good talk when it comes to health care. But she's also ruthless. I would even call her power hungry. I don't think she'll make a good president, but what worries me more is that she'll do anything to win this race. Anything.

That alone is enough to make me support Obama. I want to see what he'll do in the office. I don't think we can do much worse than we are now, even with Clinton. So why not let the man have a go at it? But I'm not just a passive supporter. I think he has a strong health care plan and good ideas for our job situation and economy. I want to give him a chance to clean up this mess in the middle east and see if he can restore America's name with the rest of the world. I hope. I really hope.
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
I find this tragically short-sighted and even slightly humorous. The Indianapolis Star's World and Nation section today featured a story about gay rights concerning the right to get a divorce. For years now, the GLBT community has fought for the right to get married in the United States. They are still fighting for this right. But I don't think I've ever considered or heard anyone else consider the flip side--what about the right to get divorced?

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/G/GAY_DIVORCE?SITE=ININS&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Now don't get me wrong. I fully support gay rights and I think they should be able to get married. I just find it interesting that it's almost equally difficult for them to get divorced, as though the government is thumbing their noses at the GLBT community like "You SAID you wanted to get married. Now you're stuck with it."

Of course, what I really wonder is when will the government realize that arguing over whether two people have the right to get married or divorced is a stupid waste of time when they could be spending time and money on matters that actually concern them, like this stupid war or our failing education system. I don't think the government has any business sticking their noses in the matter of love.
spirithorse21: (Copywriter)
I find this tragically short-sighted and even slightly humorous. The Indianapolis Star's World and Nation section today featured a story about gay rights concerning the right to get a divorce. For years now, the GLBT community has fought for the right to get married in the United States. They are still fighting for this right. But I don't think I've ever considered or heard anyone else consider the flip side--what about the right to get divorced?

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/G/GAY_DIVORCE?SITE=ININS&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Now don't get me wrong. I fully support gay rights and I think they should be able to get married. I just find it interesting that it's almost equally difficult for them to get divorced, as though the government is thumbing their noses at the GLBT community like "You SAID you wanted to get married. Now you're stuck with it."

Of course, what I really wonder is when will the government realize that arguing over whether two people have the right to get married or divorced is a stupid waste of time when they could be spending time and money on matters that actually concern them, like this stupid war or our failing education system. I don't think the government has any business sticking their noses in the matter of love.
spirithorse21: (Grr. Very Grr.)
I continue to follow the story of the teacher fighting for the right to use Freedom Writers in her classroom. Yesterday, the Perry Township school board released their decision.

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080325/LOCAL1801/803250366/1304/frontpagecities

I still find this whole thing ridiculous and think it smacks of power corruption. And then I get to the end of the story and there's my proof--the substitute teacher has continued to use The Freedom Writer's Diary with administrative approval! WTF? This whole debacle started because administrators didn't approve the book. I thought this was because they didn't approve of the content. But now, the book is approved, which leads me to think the administrators were either lazy bums about the approval process, or they lack back bone and caved to all the media attention. Either way, the teacher is now being punished over an issue that has become moot. *headdesk*
spirithorse21: (Grr. Very Grr.)
I continue to follow the story of the teacher fighting for the right to use Freedom Writers in her classroom. Yesterday, the Perry Township school board released their decision.

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080325/LOCAL1801/803250366/1304/frontpagecities

I still find this whole thing ridiculous and think it smacks of power corruption. And then I get to the end of the story and there's my proof--the substitute teacher has continued to use The Freedom Writer's Diary with administrative approval! WTF? This whole debacle started because administrators didn't approve the book. I thought this was because they didn't approve of the content. But now, the book is approved, which leads me to think the administrators were either lazy bums about the approval process, or they lack back bone and caved to all the media attention. Either way, the teacher is now being punished over an issue that has become moot. *headdesk*
spirithorse21: (Grr. Very Grr.)
Some time back, you all may recall that I posted a news story about a teacher in Indianapolis who is currently suspended for her use of The Freedom Writers. By next Tuesday, the school board in Perry Township will have decided her fate.

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080319/LOCAL1801/803190499

I can't tell you how pathetic and petty I find this whole charade. Reading between the lines, I don't think this teacher has a hope in hell of keeping her job. I see a superintendent that is completely wrapped up in bureaucracy and entirely opposed to any method that deviates from the status quo. The teacher in question is working with disadvantage (and more than likely disillusioned) kids that have been labeled as the rejects in Perry Township. Rather than reprimanding this woman, the superintendent should be applauding her ingenuity and providing her with more opportunities to reach out to these children.

Just last night, Jeremy and I were discussing how to change the problem in our prison system. I believe strongly that the first step is better education, and the second is to treat people with more humanity. And this superintendent isn't following either one. Instead, she is merely concerned about a rule, enacting power over a subordinate, and turning a blind eye to the problem children that were benefiting from that teacher's willingness to teach outside of the box.
spirithorse21: (Grr. Very Grr.)
Some time back, you all may recall that I posted a news story about a teacher in Indianapolis who is currently suspended for her use of The Freedom Writers. By next Tuesday, the school board in Perry Township will have decided her fate.

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080319/LOCAL1801/803190499

I can't tell you how pathetic and petty I find this whole charade. Reading between the lines, I don't think this teacher has a hope in hell of keeping her job. I see a superintendent that is completely wrapped up in bureaucracy and entirely opposed to any method that deviates from the status quo. The teacher in question is working with disadvantage (and more than likely disillusioned) kids that have been labeled as the rejects in Perry Township. Rather than reprimanding this woman, the superintendent should be applauding her ingenuity and providing her with more opportunities to reach out to these children.

Just last night, Jeremy and I were discussing how to change the problem in our prison system. I believe strongly that the first step is better education, and the second is to treat people with more humanity. And this superintendent isn't following either one. Instead, she is merely concerned about a rule, enacting power over a subordinate, and turning a blind eye to the problem children that were benefiting from that teacher's willingness to teach outside of the box.

Headdesk

Feb. 28th, 2008 12:08 pm
spirithorse21: (Grr. Very Grr.)
"Why don't we let stimulus package 1, which seemed like a good idea at the time, have a chance to kick in?"
~President George W. Bush

That, my friends, is what our *fine* American president said to the press in a recent speech in which he also denied that the country was sliding into an economic depression.

You can read the whole article here to see other stupid things he said in the same speech.

I just *love* how the man leading our country can so blatantly ignore the circumstances and continue blithely on his way, wearing rose-colored glasses. Brilliant. Fucking brilliant. The man is ignoring the sage observations of economists. He refuses to acknowledge what the rest of America plainly sees. And he's our president until Jan. 20, 2009. *sigh* Canada looks better and better every day.

Headdesk

Feb. 28th, 2008 12:08 pm
spirithorse21: (Grr. Very Grr.)
"Why don't we let stimulus package 1, which seemed like a good idea at the time, have a chance to kick in?"
~President George W. Bush

That, my friends, is what our *fine* American president said to the press in a recent speech in which he also denied that the country was sliding into an economic depression.

You can read the whole article here to see other stupid things he said in the same speech.

I just *love* how the man leading our country can so blatantly ignore the circumstances and continue blithely on his way, wearing rose-colored glasses. Brilliant. Fucking brilliant. The man is ignoring the sage observations of economists. He refuses to acknowledge what the rest of America plainly sees. And he's our president until Jan. 20, 2009. *sigh* Canada looks better and better every day.

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