Sunday, August 30, 2015

Banned by Mark Shea.

As I mentioned in a blog post from June, one of the blogs that I frequented at that time was Mark Shea's Catholic and Enjoying It!. As I said at that time, I don't always agree with Mark - we definitely part ways over the minimum wage - but I find, for the most part, we agree on issues more often than we disagree.

It appears now, though, that I'll have to stop reading his blog. I've found myself blocked from commenting on his blog, and I see little reason to continue reading what he writes if I'm not allowed to comment.

Mr. Shea's blocking me took me by surprise.

It began with a recent post of his, "He’s just saying what we’re all thinking" where he was critical of the GOP base and their love of Donald Trump. No, I did not defend Trump. I don't support Donald Trump, and I seriously doubt that I ever could.

The conflict I had with Shea came after someone asked Shea who he would pick in a Trump vs Hillary match-up. Shea replied, "Neither".

Of course, I wouldn't vote for either one......that's not where the disagreement lay. I wrote,
"Mark has given up on voting for less than perfect candidates. The person must be pure."

Mr Shea took offense to that statement, whereupon he called me a liar, and left this link - and blocked me from leaving further comments.

Having read the article to which he linked, I stand by my observation. I am willing to admit that my assessment of Mr. Shea's view may not be 100% accurate, but even if I'm in error, I believe Shea's reaction is over-kill.

It's not unusual for Mr. Shea to throw a tantrum when a reader disagrees with him.

As I said, I see no reason to continue following Catholic and Enjoying It! if I cannot leave the occasional comment. I'll send a link to this post to Mr. Shea via his email - that's the only way I can let him know of my thoughts on his blocking me.

I can't be certain that Shea will read this post, or if he does read it whether he will condescend to comment on it here. One thing I am certain of, however; I would not block whatever comment he might choose to leave.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Does America Need Gender-Neutral Pronouns?

Thanks to an an opinion piece by Todd Starnes on, I learned that the University of Tennessee – Knoxville’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion is worried that certain traditional English personal pronouns might be offensive.

According to Donna Braquet, Director of the University of Tennessee Pride Center, rather than assume that the person we are addressing is a he or a she , we should use a singular gender-neutral pronoun such as ze , hir , hirs , and xe , xem or, xyr .

Braquet writes

"How do you know what pronoun someone uses? If you cannot use the methods mentioned above, you can always politely ask. 'Oh, nice to meet you, [insert name]. What pronouns should I use?' is a perfectly fine question to ask".

This is not a new argument. Every few years, I come across some opinion piece telling me that the English personal pronouns that have been in use for centuries are either sexist or homophobic. The claim is that our society will be much more enlightened and inclusive if we would only eliminate the words he or she .

People on both sides of the cultural divide believe that the change in personal pronouns will bring about a change in our society - some believe for the better - some believe for the worse.

After becoming familiar with Filipino culture and three of the more than a dozen regional languages spoken here, I no longer buy into the idea than a change in English personal pronouns will have much affect on American culture.

I can't say anything about the personal pronouns in many of the Filipino languages,but I can comment on three - Cebuano, Ilocano, and Tagalog. In each of these three, there is no separate word for he or she. In all three, the word for he or she is siya. Just as English makes no gender distinction with the word they -meaning "those people", Cebuano, Ilocano, and Tagalog do the same with sila ("those people") as well as siya for "that person".

Having singular gender-neutral pronouns hasn't caused Philippines to become a Feminist and/or LGBTQ Utopia. Same-sex "marriage" is not on the horizon, in spite of the fact that Tagalog doesn't have separate words for "husband" or "wife" - the Tagalog word is "asawa" for either spouse.

Contrary to what Donna Braquet might believe, gender-neutral pronouns in English won't bring about the world she might want. Neither will the change in pronouns destroy the United States.

The U.S. has bigger problems.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Caitlyn Jenner Halloween Costume Has Progressive's Knickers in Twist.

The Caitlyn Jenner Halloween Costume Has Progressive's Knickers in Twist.

Everyone on the Internet seems to think this Halloween costume is a bad idea. some even wanting to leave the planet because of it.

I think it's a great idea......though I wouldn't personally wear one.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

I Saw This Photo and Thought of LarryD.

I came across this photo on the National Catholic Distorter website and immediately thought of LarryD and his Acts of the Apostasy blog. Those familiar with Larry and his work will understand why.

If you read this post, Larry, you're welcome to it.

Rick Perlstein - Idiote Extraordinaire.

Behold the photo of Rick Perlstein - a complete idiot.

In a piece written for The Washington Spectator, Perlstein calls the POW/MIA flag a racist flag.

"The one that supposedly honors history but actually spreads a pernicious myth? And is useful only to venal right-wing politicians who wish to exploit hatred by calling it heritage? It’s past time to pull it down."

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Bernie Sanders Versus Black Lives Matter.

I am certainly no fan of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, and it isn't really my place to speak in his defense, but I see something a bit out of kilter with his being attacked by members of Black Lives Matters.

On Saturday, Black Lives Matters activists disrupted an event in Seattle where Sanders was scheduled, prompting Sanders to leave without giving his speech.

This wasn't the first time Sanders has had a run in with protesters from the movement.

Last month in Phoenix, protesters affiliated with the Black Lives Matters movement took over the stage and disrupted an interview with Sanders and former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley.

Do these protesters actually believe that the Vermont senator doesn't agree that Black Lives Matters? That they would attack someone who makes President Obama look like the Chairman of the local Tea Party group, strikes me as completely absurd.

The only explanation that makes any sense to me is the very real possibility that these Black Lives Matters activists are in the payroll of the Clinton camp.

Bernie Sanders is riding pretty high among Democrat Progressives. An attack by a race based group might be Clinton's only way of pushing Sanders downward in the polls.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

The First GOP Debates.

It was 5AM Friday here in Philippines when the, so-called 2nd tier, or "happy hour" Republican debate was broadcast live via Fox News. I didn't awake until after 6 AM, so I did not watch the entire debate between the seven candidates who had not made it to the top ten in time to make the Big League debate at 9 0'clock.

Like everyone one else on the planet, I was most impressed by the performance of Carly Fiorina. She has, without question, catapulted onto the top tier. The question,now is who of the top ten candidates will now sink lower in the polls? As much as I hate to say this, I suspect that candidate will be Dr. Ben Carson.

I like Dr. Carson, actually a good deal more than some of the leading candidates. Unfortunately, while he might be the most intelligent and capable of the candidates, he is also the most soft-spoken. That does not bode well in this age of media bluster. There's no question that he would serve the U.S. much better than, say Donald Trump, but Trump is the showman while Carson isn't.

It's difficult for me to judge which of the top ten did the best in the 9 o'clock debate. I would prefer any of them to any of the candidates being put for by the Democrats. Which one is my current favorite? That's difficult to say as well. If I could narrow it down to maybe three or four, I'd say my top favorites - in no particular order - are Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush and Carly Fiorina.

I doubt if enough voters will agree with me on Rand Paul. He's too far behind.

Fiorina deserves to be higher in the polls although I'm not sure she'll get enough votes to win the nomination. I would support her as the Presidential candidate, but at this point, I'd say she should at the very least, be on the ticket as Vice President candidate.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Voodoo Chile.

On another of my blogs, [dumaguetewebsite,] I wrote of my discovery of a little cafe in Dumaguete - The Rollin' Pin. This post is not a retelling of that story; one can click on the link to read it.

No, this post is about the music mentioned in that post - Jimi Hendrix' Voodoo Chile from his Electric Ladyland  LP. This is not to be confused with Voodoo Child - Slight Return from the same LP.

I wanted to post a link to a video and/or recording of the song for those readers unfamiliar with the song. Unfortunately, while there are a number of Youtube videos of The Jimi Hendrix Experience playing versions of Voodoo Child - Slight Return , I was unable to find any video of Hendrix doing the original jam, Voodoo Chile . I was tempted to pay a dollar and download the mp3 from Amazon, but lo and behold, although Amazon has Electric Ladyland in a number of formats, the mp3 format does not include Voodoo Chile .

So now, anyone who has had their interest piqued by this post and would like to hear Voodoo Chile , you'll have to go to your Spotify app and locate Electric Ladyland .

No 'gay emojis' For Me, Either.

The BBC and other fine news organizations are reporting that Russia 'may ban gay emojis' under 'propaganda' law.

Seeing the direction that Europe and the United States are taking regarding same sex "marriage", Russia has outlawed the distribution of "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations".

Mikhail Marchenko, a Russian senator, pointed out that gay emojis, from social media, promote non-traditional sexual relationships and disrespect for parents and other family members.

According to a article on the same subject,

Though the Russian probe into emojis will focus specifically on Facebook, users of Twitter and Apple’s new operating system for the iPhone are also able to include rainbow flags and other gay-themed icons in their posts and messages.
Davydov, the Young Guard chairman, said that these services could also become the target of investigations if Russian citizens begin to complain about them.

Just as I posted Russia's heterosexual flag in show of support, I've taken the original image of the gay emojis from the BBC article, and transformed the emojis into heterosexuals.

You're welcome.