Kat's Comments

I got this blog because a friend nagged me into it... he asked why I didn't have a political blog. I will try and keep it updated, and I will be participating in his experiment in group blogging... I will probably be much more active there then on this blog, although I will *try* and keep it updated. I won't be emoting all over the place here (I have a livejournal for that), this is strictly for my political rantings (which will probably appear on my livejournal also).

Location: Southern California, United States

Friday, September 29, 2006

Remind me why this is such a great country to live in...

One of my favorite poems:

First They Came for the Jews

First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.

Pastor Martin Niemöller

With the recent passage by the House of the Warrantless Wiretap bill, and the passage by the Senate of a bill (they passed the same version that the House did, so it will go to the President right away) that decimates the Bill of Rights; it's time to remind politicians that they work for us, and we will not let the government strip us of our rights.

It's cold comfort, but both of my Senators voted against this bill.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Finally, someone in Texas politics with a clue

A friend linked to someone's livejournal that had the following speech posted. I this is something that EVERYONE should read. Now if only we could get the religious right to understand and comprehend what they are reading.

Here is one Texas legislator who tells it like it is, Representative Senfronia Thompson. Read her words opposing a Texas constitutional amendment banning gay Marriage.

HJR 6 Speech by Representative Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston)

I have been a member of this august body for three decades, and today is one of the all-time low points. We are going in the wrong direction, in the direction of hate and fear and discrimination. Members, we all know what this is about; this is the politics of divisiveness at its worst, a wedge issue that is meant to divide.

Members, this issue is a distraction from the real things we need to be working on. At the end of this session, this Legislature, this Leadership will not be able to deliver the people of Texas, fundamental and fair answers to the pressing issues of our day.

Let's look at what this amendment does not do: It does not give one
Texas citizen meaningful tax relief. It does not reform or fully fund our education system. It does not restore one child to CHIP, who was cut from health insurance last session. It does not put one dime into raising Texas' Third World access to health care. It does not do one thing to care for or protect one elderly person or one child in this state. In fact, it does not even do anything to protect one marriage.

Members, this bill is about hate and fear and discrimination. I know something about hate and fear and discrimination. When I was a small girl, white folks used to talk about "protecting the institution of marriage" as well. What they meant was if people of my color tried to marry people of Mr. Chisum's color, you'd often find the people of my color hanging from a tree. That's what the white folks did back then to "protect marriage." Fifty years ago, white folks thought inter-racial marriages were a "threat to the institution of marriage."

Members, I'm a Christian and a proud Christian. I read the good book, and do my best to live by it. I have never read the verse where it says, "gay people can't marry." I have never read the verse where it says, "thou shalt discriminate against those not like me." I have never read the verse where it says, "let's base our public policy on hate and fear and discrimination." Christianity to me is love and hope and faith and forgiveness-- not hate and discrimination.

I have served in this body a lot of years-- and I have seen a lot of promises broken. I should be up here demanding my 40 acres and a mule because that's another promise you broke. You used a wealthy white minister cloaked in the cloth to ease the stench of that form of discrimination.

So, now that blacks and women can vote, and now that blacks and women have equal rights-- you turn your hatred to homosexuals-- and you still use your misguided reading of the Bible to justify your hatred. You want to pass this ridiculous amendment so you can go home and brag-- brag about what? Declare that you saved the people of Texas from what?

Persons of the same sex cannot get married in this State now. Texas does not now recognize same-sex marriages, civil unions, religious unions, domestic partnerships, contractual arrangements or Christian blessings entered into in this State-- or anywhere else on this planet

If you want to make your hateful political statements then that is one thing-- the Chisum amendment does real harm. It repeals the contracts that many single people have paid thousands of dollars to purchase to obtain medical powers of attorney, powers of attorney, hospital visitation, joint ownership and support agreements. You have lost your way-- this is obscene.

Today, you are playing to the lowest common denominator-- you are putting aside the real issues of substance that we need to address so that you can instead play on the public's fears and prejudices to deceive and manipulate voters into thinking that we have done something important.

I realize that gay rights are not the same as civil rights-- but I can guarantee you we are going in the wrong direction. I can not hide my skin color. In fact, in most of the South, people as pink as Rep. Wayne
Smith were still Black by law if they had a great grandparent who was
African. I was unable to attend an integrated and equally funded school until I got my Master of Laws degree. There were separate and unequal facilities for nearly everything.

I got second-hand textbooks even worse than the kind you're trying to pass off on every public school student next year. I had to ride to school on the back of the bus. I had to quench my thirst from filthy coloreds-only drinking fountains. I had to enter restaurants from the kitchen door. I was banned from entering most public accommodations, even from serving on a jury. I had to live with the fear that getting too uppity could get you killed --- or worse. I know what third-class citizenship feels like. In my first term, one of my colleagues walked up and down this aisle muttering about how Nigras should be back in the field picking cotton instead of picking out committees.

So, I have to wonder about Rep. Chisum's 3/5 of a person amendment. Some of you folks hid behind your Bible then, too, to justify your cultural prejudices, your denial of liberty, and your gunpoint robbery of human dignity.

We have worked hard at putting our prejudices against homosexuals in law. We have denied them basic job protections. We have denied them and their children freedom from bullying and harassment at school. We have tried to criminalize their very existence. But, we have also absolved them of all family duties and responsibilities: to care for and support their spouses and children, to count their family's assets in determining public assistance, to obtain health insurance for dependents, to make end-of-life or necessary medical decisions for their life partners--- sometimes even to visit in the hospital, even to defend our own country. And then, we can stand on our two hind legs and proclaim, "See, I told you homosexual families are unstable." And nearly every one of you on this Floor has a homosexual in their extended families.

Some of you have shunned and isolated these family members. Some of you, even some of the joint coauthors, have embraced them within your own family for the essence of Christianity is love. Yet,you are now poised to constitutionalize discrimination against a particular class of people. I thought we would be debating real issues: education, health care for kids, teacher's health insurance, health care for the elderly, protecting survivors of sexual assault, protecting the pensions of seniors in nursing homes.

I thought we would be debating economic development, property tax relief, protecting seniors pensions and stem cell research, to save lives of Texans who are waiting for a more abundant life. Instead we are wasting this body's time with this political stunt that is nothing more than constitutionalizing discrimination. The prejudices exhibited by members of this body disgust me.

Last week, Republicans used a political wedge issue to pull kids-- sweet little vulnerable kids-- out of the homes of loving parents and put them back in a state orphanage just because those parents are gay. That's disgusting. Today, we are telling homosexuals that just like people of my ilk, when I was a small child; they too are second class citizens.

I have listened to all the arguments. I have listened to all of the crap.
Mr. Chisum, is a person who I consider my good friend and revere. But, I want you to know that this amendment is blowing smoke to fuel the hell-fire flames of bigotry.

You are trying to protect your constituents from danger. This amendment is a CYB amendment for you to go home and talk about.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Week 1 over at BlogSpectrum

Cross posting this from BlogSpectrum (also back-dated to match with the date and time on BlogSpectrum)

The Biggest Threat to America Today – the American People

I don't mean everyone in America. I'm talking about the eligible citizens who don't vote. The apathetic citizens who simply don't care enough to have a say in what happens with our country. The past few presidential elections have hovered around 50% voter turnout, this year's election was at about 56% turnout. What's wrong with this picture?

The excuses for not voting are many and varied, including (but certainly not limited to):
• "I don't have time." Vote absentee, it's easy and you can do it whenever you want, as long as your ballot gets in before Election Day.
• "My vote doesn't count." Every vote counts towards the electorate, and if everyone who said that had voted, the results may have been different.
• "I can't get off work." The law allows up to 3 hours off to go vote. If you are out of town, vote absentee.
• "I don't want to vote for this office/ on this proposition/ etc." You don't have to, vote for what you want to vote for, leave the others blank if you don't want to vote on it.
• "If I vote, they will get my name and call me for Jury Duty." Guess what, most states use lists of driver's licenses, not voter rolls. I have a family friend who is a legal resident, but a Canadian citizen. She's been called for Jury Duty several times.

Then after not voting, they bitch about what is wrong with this country. If you don't vote, you can't bitch, simple as that.

Voting is not just the right and privilege that most people think of it as; it is also a DUTY.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Why I'm here...

I'm Politikat, here because The Casual Observer nagged me into getting a political blog. Well, ok, it didn't require much nagging... He just tempted me with his idea for a group blog experiment. I couldn't resist. So here I am...

Those who already know me will have an idea of my political viewpoints... I don't think I'll expound on them in my intro, I think I'll let my responses to The Casual Observer's questions at the group blog experiment speak for themselves. Although I will say that I have taken the "test" that the Libertarians had at my local Fair one year... I came out very firmly in the "liberal" section. I tend to think of myself as a moderate, another friend says we are "screaming moderates"; I think I like "dynamic moderate" better.

First post.

I got this blog because a friend nagged me into it... he asked why I didn't have a political blog. I will try and keep it updated, and I will be participating in his experiment in group blogging... I will probably be much more active there then on this blog, although I will *try* and keep it updated. I won't be emoting all over the place here (I have a livejournal for that), this is strictly for my political rantings (which will probably appear on my livejournal also).

Yes, this is the same as my description... I had to have *something* for the blog to show up!