From the designer:

My Facebook and G+ newsfeeds have been filled with pink and red lately, so it seemed important to point out to the queer and allied in my life that Human Rights Campaign actually has a track record of promoting some rights at the expense of others. Being a fairly rough-and-tumble sort of cisgender queer man, I waded in.

It’s frankly unconscionable; transgender rights are integral to queer liberation, and moreover transfolks are our sisters and brothers, have shed the same blood, sweat, and tears in horrifying numbers for the same goals. The fact that names like Virginia Prince and Sylvia Rae Rivera aren’t as prominent in our histories as Harvey Milk says, I think, all it needs to about the need for some pink and purple soul-searching. Go forth and introspect.

Visually, too, I think the HRC equality logo leaves a bit to be desired, but I made minimal changes. The colors are based on the transgender pride flag designed by Monica Helms in 1999, the most widely used of several designs and to my eye, the most pleasing.

Considering that HRC seems to be continuing to give lip service to trans folks while throwing them under the bus, this is important and timely.

People need to know that the most visible LGBT “equality” organization out there continues to only fight for gay and lesbian equality at the expense of everyone else.

Trans allies, please repost. (And don’t give money to HRC.)
Women Vote Differently Than Men. Do They Do So on the Supreme Court as Well?
Aug. 26 is Women’s Equality Day, the anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment giving women the vote in 1920. As long ago as 1952, pollsters found a gender gap in how men and women vote, and the difference grew to serious proportions starting in 1984. Women first unambiguously...

“Just weeks after she joined the Supreme Court, she was hearing oral argument in a sexual harassment case in which the boss had told the plaintiff: “You’re a woman, what do you know?” Justice John Paul Stevens began joking with the defendant’s lawyer about an employer who might say “You’re a man, what do you know?” since, Stevens admitted, his wife often said such things to him. Ginsburg cut him off. “It’s hard to transpose like that,” Ginsburg interrupted briskly. “ ‘You’re a woman, what do you know?’ means something different than ‘You’re a man, what do you know?’ ” The guys in the Supreme Court might be yukking it up about how their wives henpecked them, but Ginsburg knew what the question meant to a woman trying to do her job in a world in which men held all the power.”

Who am I to know?

I’m so sick of reading all of these “Obama is a liar about the healthcare tax” things. Since when has a president who used different wording been a surprise? I tend to recall a president who lied about weapons of mass destruction, and that got us into a war where people DIED, not used a different word for tax. But the war president got us into a big debt, so surprise, surprise. But that’s not even Watergate lies or anything else of that nature. I think we can come to terms with the fact that we are told lies. But what this tax will be like is similar to medicare and social security. We complain about our money going to those two things, and we’d complain if we lost it. In the long run, this tax will save us money because we aren’t going to be spending tens of thousands on ridiculous hospital bills, and you won’t have to worry about being denied help. Like my mom who has to pay tens of thousands of dollars for all her trips to a bunch of different doctors who still can’t tell her what is wrong with her so she still has more appointments and more tests. Or having an epileptic seizure because you can’t afford your medicine because you were laid off from your job so your epilepsy takes over your life. Or having to pay $25,000 for a hospital stay after your stomach hurt so bad and the doctors can’t tell you what is wrong. Or after fainting, you have a seizure which prompts a $15,000 MRI scan to find out if you have internal bleeding and can die. Or having to pay $50,000 because you had a stroke and now you can’t speak and are paralyzed and have to pay debts for the rest of your life. But I’m just a naive nineteen year old college student who doesn’t know anything and hasn't experienced life yet, right? 

Today is such a huge day. And it’s making me so anxious. Like a giant sitting on my chest. Even though its just the beginning and we won’t know anything for a while, but this could either be so good or so shattering. I don’t want to be at work today. I so won’t be able to focus.

Julian Bond

Please join HRC in sending your support, positive thoughts, and kind words in memory of civil rights leader and long-time LGBT ally Julian Bond, who passed away this weekend at the age of 75.

In addition to his lifetime of work within and on behalf of the African American civil rights movement, Bond was a passionate and stalwart supporter of the equal rights of LGBT Americans.

In 2011, Bond highlighted his support of marriage equality through a video for HRC’s Americans for Marriage Equality and joined HRC in 2015 at the Supreme Court to hear oral arguments in Obergefell v. Hodges. In 2013, he wrote “LGBT rights are human rights” in a blog post on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington.

Throughout the first half of this year, Bond wrote multiple opinion pieces in support of LGBT equality, including those that highlighted the need for equal treatment in the South, against anti-LGBT religious refusal legislation in state legislatures, and in strong support of comprehensive, federal LGBT non-discrimination protections.

Bond also delivered impassioned speeches at HRC’s Gala Dinner in Los Angeles in 2009 and again at HRC’s National Dinner in 2013.

NDC pointing fingers..........

Something is wrong, the NDC is raising serious issues about the conduct of the NPP in court yesterday, interestingly the lead counsel for the NDC , Mr Tsatsu Tsikata in his court case during the NPP administration raised many objections to a sitting judge on his case. Years on, Mr. Tsatsu Tsikata who was pardoned by the President, John Kufuor is representing his party and they have a problem with the legal team of the petitioners raising issues with the composition of the judges of the supreme court sitting on the case which has to decide if NDC can join the petition. I think NPP has every right to challenge what ever they seek so far as the constitution provides that. However, reports of comments by the presiding judge, whose nephew was appointed as the executive secretary to the president, is what I think is in bad taste though not privy to the full statements it however seem to imply that the issues the NPP raised were things he was not comfortable about. The presiding judge made comments to the effects that principles are been chopped and issues been reduced to pedestrian discussions However the substantive case has not been heard yet, the issue of NDC joining the suit will be looked at, where of a date will scheduled for the hearing.

However, the legal team of the President, John Mahama filed its response over the weekend.

Speaking to reporters, Abraham Amaliba, a lawyer for the team said, the NPP case is an attempt to subvert the constitution and they about presenting 4800 witnesses when the court starts hearing.

The leadership of the NPP has filed a petition at the supreme challenging the election results announced by the electoral commission.

Hawaii’s Supreme Court begins to hear Thirty Meter Telescope case

Hawaii’s Supreme Court began hearing oral arguments today over the fate of the Thirty Meter Telescope, which could one day become the world’s largest. The Associated Press has put together a nice summary of the recent legal battle here.

Some locals say the land coveted by astronomers atop Mauna Kea on the Big Island is sacred to their culture, and point to the 13 telescopes already built as evidence no more are needed.

Astronomers counter that the site has some of the best skies in the Northern Hemisphere, and the TMT collaboration spent seven years gaining approval.

Protesters halted construction in April. And in June activists heaved boulders onto the Mauna Kea Observatory Road to thwart the restart of building. That prompted officials to close the road to the public entirely, including tourists and amateur astronomers.

The closure was lifted in early August after law enforcement arrested seven protesters at the summit. The same night, 20 more were arrested on nearby Maui, as they halted construction on the unrelated 4-meter Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope, soon to be the largest of its kind.

However, a new emergency rule remains in effect. In July, Hawaiian officials restricted nighttime visitors to only certain parts of the mountain. The change was designed to stop protestors, but night-sky photographers and amateur astronomers say it makes some of their activities illegal too.

Astronomy Magazine

Hawaii Supreme Court hears Mauna Kea telescope case

Hawaii Supreme Court Hears Mauna Kea Telescope Case

Lawyers delivered opening arguments in the case Thursday, and justices questioned why the state department that issued the permit did so when there were ongoing challenges to the project.

In a packed courtroom with more than 200 onlookers, the telescope opponents softly sang a ballad called “Ku Haaheo,” which is Hawaiian for “stand proud,” before and after the proceedings.

“The ultimate final decision of the board granting the (permit) represents the culmination of a process of years of community outreach, of dialogue, of listening, revising, reducing, modifying, mitigating, conditioning to a degree that is unprecedented in the history of astronomy at Mauna Kea,” said Jay Handlin, attorney for the University of Hawaii, which sub-leases the land atop Mauna Kea for the telescope project.

This Post was identified, curated and sumarized by an AI bot living here @ WingzTV.

I first noticed this article on

Other News Articles which caught my interest earlier,

Native Hawaiians protest building of new telescope to be built on sacred mountain

Misc Hawaiian Location Mauna Kea Location Hawaii

Pesticides in paradise: Hawaii& focus on GM crops

Location Big Island Location Hawaii Misc Hawaiian

Was the video not related to the Article? Aww, shucks im sorry. Not to worry, my algorithm is still learning. Ill get better!
IF YOU LIKE YOUR 401(k), YOU CAN KEEP YOUR 401(k): Obama Labor Dept. Sets Stage for Nationalizing Retirement Accounts
By David Mills

“In 2013, in a little-heralded case, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit rejected the Obama Labor Department’s attempt to punish voluntary retirement plan service providers.  The DOL, under the direction of the controversial, radical leftist Tom Perez, had tried to force providers of 401(k), 403(b), IRA, and related services to adopt a massive new set of regulations known as “fiduciary” responsibilities.

The Seventh Circuit slammed the door shut on Labor and the Supreme Court thereafter declined to hear the appeal, which meant that the Obama administration had lost in the highest court in the land.

Of course for the “most transparent administration ever”, that step simply meant that the court’s opinion was to be rejected and that Obama would use his infamous pen to rule by executive fiat.  After all, the ends justify the means, correct?“
McDonnell asks U.S. chief justice to let him remain free on bond #vapol
Today a Richmond-based federal appeals court denied the former governor's bid to remain free while he pursues his appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Former Gov. Bob McDonnell has asked John G. Roberts Jr., chief justice of the United States, to let him remain free on bond while asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear his appeal of his corruption convictions.

In his emergency appeal, the former governor’s lawyers argue that “McDonnell is not a flight risk or threat, and absent relief he would serve much of his sentence before this court can review his dubious conviction.”

The former governor’s lawyers say there is “a reasonable probability” that the Supreme Court will take up McDonnell’s case on two issues - “the scope of federal corruption laws” and the issue of how the trial court dealt with pretrial publicity.

Roberts is the “circuit justice” or initial point person on the court for petitions from the 4th U.S. Circuit. The chief justice could decide on McDonnell’s request by himself, but justices usually refer such questions to the entire bench, said Carl Tobias, a law professor at the University of Richmond.

Click on the headline to read the full story.
~ Richmond Times-Dispatch

Daily Pro-life Media Report

August 20, 2015

1)  Fr. Frank and Alveda are interviewed on the Center for Medical Progress videos in a CBN News report that will be rebroadcast tonight on the ABC Family Channel at 11:00 PM Eastern.  The story, linked below, appeared in the August 18 News Summary, but the video report, which is also available at the link below, has been added.


2)  Priests for Life’s appeal to the Supreme Court in the HHS mandate case is discussed in’s article “Catholic groups hope the Supreme Court will hear their contraception mandate cases.”  The story, which features a photo of Fr. Frank praying in front of the Supreme Court last year, begins, “When it comes to the Obama Administration’s contraception mandate, might the New York-based Priests for Life become the nonprofit equivalent of Hobby Lobby?”


3)  Fr. Frank is quoted in a Catholic Post (the publication of the Diocese of Peoria, Illinois) article on the August 22 rallies against Planned Parenthood.  He states, “Now, with the undercover videos of Planned Parenthood, many realize for the first time that abortion is not the serene and innocuous thing that slogans made them think it was, and that Planned Parenthood is not the caring, service-oriented organization that its marketing masters make the public think it is. We are in a brief window of opportunity now to rouse ourselves and our fellow citizens to action.“


4)  Alveda’s op-ed “Join the Rallies to Stop Planned Parenthood” was published by today.  In it she urges people to attend one of the protests on August 22 and to read Fr. Frank’s new book Abolishing Abortion.


5)  The House Judiciary Committee has sent letters to 58 Planned Parenthood affiliates asking several questions, including ones regarding the types of abortions they perform, protocols used for the disposal of fetal remains, and fetal tissue donations.  The full text of the letter is available at the link below.


6)  Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration has issued a warning to Planned Parenthood that even though the agency has granted permission for PP to resume performing abortions at three clinics suspected of violating the law, the facilities are still under investigation.  The clinics are allegedly performing second trimester abortions for which they are not licensed and Planned Parenthood, in statements to the press, has tried to say that the clinics have been exonerated.


7)  Two Las Cruces, New Mexico churches, one Roman Catholic and one Baptist, have been bombed in the last month.  A third undetonated bomb was found last week at a Presbyterian church.  The New York Times reports that “investigators have interviewed political activists here, seemingly focused on the possibility that the bombs were planted by abortion zealots of one kind or another.”

Story attached in separate file.

8)  An El Paso abortion clinic, Reproductive Services, is set to become the first such facility to reopen in Texas since the Supreme Court temporarily enjoined enforcement of the state’s clinic regulation law.  State officials have not given a timeline for how long it will take to issue a license for the clinic, which it was ordered to do by federal Judge Lee Yeakel on Monday.

Story attached in separate file.

9)  Former Satanist Zachary King, in an interview with the Lepanto Institute, discusses his involvement with 141 ritual abortions while a member of a coven.  He states, “In Satanism, killing something or the death of something is the most effective way of getting your spell accomplished. As far as trying to get satan’s approval, to give you something that you want, killing something is the best way to go. Killing something is the ultimate offering to satan, and if you can kill an unborn, that is his ultimate goal.”  King is currently writing a book to be titled Abortion Is a Satanic Sacrifice.


Hawaii Supreme Court hears Mauna Kea telescope case

US News

Hawaii Supreme Court hears Mauna Kea telescope case

Hawaii’s Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case involving building one of the world’s largest telescopes on Mauna Kea.Opponents, who are against building the Thirty Meter Telescope on land that many Native Hawaiians consider sacred, are challenging a permit that would allow the telescope to be built on conservation land on Hawaii’s Big Island.Lawyers delivered opening arguments in the case Thursday, and justices questioned why the state department that issued the permit did so when there were ongoing challenges to the project.

I don’t remember ever making a decision where I decided the case before the trial, said Associate Justice Richard Pollack.Williamson Chang, a law professor at the University of Hawaii who works closely with the Hawaiian sovereignty movement, said the justices were tough on the lawyers from the state and university. “They’re doing something that I haven’t seen in a long time,” Chang said.
How Texas Could Set National Template for Limiting Abortion Access
Its restrictions will probably be reviewed by the Supreme Court and are being copied by other states.
By Kim Soffen

“If the regulations are found unconstitutional, shuttered clinics will be able to reopen. But if they are ruled constitutional, or if the Supreme Court doesn’t hear the case, seven of Texas’s 17 remaining clinics will most likely be forced to close.”

Texas Supreme Court has opportunity to improve public education

*This is important for Latinos students in Texas. This is the inequity in a nutshell: “In Texas, with the average school tax rate of $1 per $100 value of property, the poorest district can raise $300 per student and the richest district can raise $158,000 per student.” VL

By Albert Kauffmann, For NewsTaco

This week, the Texas Supreme Court will hear what could well be its most important case ever — on public school financing.

The court has a chance to guarantee every child in the state has the same opportunity to get a high quality education, based on the requirements of the Texas Constitution. The court should adopt a straightforward and clear test for the Legislature to follow and the public to understand. Every school district should have the same access to funds for every student as every other district at any tax rate allowed by the state, taking into account differences in costs of education among students and districts.

I n Texas, with the average school tax rate of $1 per $100 value of property, the poorest district can raise $300 per student and the richest district can raise $158,000 per student.

The court adopted a test close to this when it heard this case in 1989 and 1991. But over time, the standard has become increasingly vague and weak. In the case to be argued this week, most school districts, charter schools and voucher advocates are before the court.

The court should overcome any aversion to demanding true equality, as the Texas Constitution requires.

The court need only review the history of the creation of our 1,000 school districts, the built-in weaknesses of the school funding system, and the court’s approaches to the issues in past cases.

From the more than 6,000 separate school districts in existence in the early 1900s, about 1,000 remain. The lines were drawn after political struggles, not reasonable analysis. Powerful interests protected their property — expensive housing, commercial interests and mineral wealth — from higher tax rates paid by others. Those in control included or excluded populations and geographic areas based on the wealth and the “desirability” or “undesirability” of the population.

The entire Texas school finance system is based on the property value in each of the 1,000 districts. District ad valorem taxes support more than half of the total costs of public schools in Texas. This creates incredible inequities because of the incredible differences in property wealth per student among the districts.

The state system requires poor districts to pay higher tax rates than the wealthier districts to raise what the state considers adequate amount of funding.

In Texas, with the average school tax rate of $1 per $100 value of property, the poorest district can raise $300 per student and the richest district can raise $158,000 per student. In Bexar County, one district can raise $11,000 per student and another district can raise only $830 per student. Similar disparities infect almost all Texas counties.

The state supplements locally raised funds with state funds. Texas sends more money to poor districts than to rich districts to raise the low-wealth districts to some level the Texas Legislature considers adequate. However, the state funds do not raise the poor districts to the same funding level as the wealthier districts.

The state system requires poor districts to pay higher tax rates than the wealthier districts to raise what the state considers adequate amount of funding. The state level of adequacy is far below what is actually adequate.

The state’s average total expenditure of about $10,000 per year per child is $1,000 to $2,000 below the national average. In the 2014 trial, the district court found that state and local funds together are $1,000 to $3,000 below what is necessary to provide a program to meet the state’s own standards.

Lower-wealth districts suffer the most from these deficits. The greater the deficit and the poorer the district, the greater the harm. The deficit is even greater for districts with large proportions of low-income students and English language learners. The deficit and the harm to lower-wealth districts are especially negative in the funding of facilities. Wealthier districts can generate funds for facilities from their own property wealth. Poorer districts cannot.

The deficits are greater because of the rapidly increasing numbers and proportions of low-income students and English learners in schools, and the increasing demands of the testing system and graduation standards. The political burden of persuading the Legislature to put more resources into the schools falls most heavily on poor districts, the least powerful in the legislative system.

These deficits negatively affect teacher hiring and retention, and harm students. In my own family, an early education teacher highly prized by her principal at an elementary school in a very poor district is leaving to work in an adjoining middle-wealth district for $5,500 more per year.

A student in special education in San Antonio is given a one-hour assessment and one hour of reading tutoring per week. The same student who moves to a Boston suburb is given a two-day assessment, two hours of weekly occupational and group therapy, and a half-time aide.

In general, the poorer districts have suffered the most in teacher hiring and retention, and in attracting more expensive housing and white collar businesses.

Legal challenges to state school financing are a recurring tale in Texas. In 1989 and 1991, the Texas Supreme Court declared the school finance system violated the Texas Constitution’s requirement that the Legislature “establish and make suitable provision for the support and maintenance of an efficient system of public free schools.”

The system is still inefficient, inequitable and inadequately funded. It is not suitable to meet the demands of the Texas Constitution or the needs of our students and community.

In response, the Legislature crafted the first system that sought to equalize all school districts’ access to funds, the fairest system up to that time. Wealthy districts attacked that system, and the court rejected it in 1992.

The Legislature developed a new way to equalize funding in 1993, and the court in 1995, for the first time, upheld that system. The court developed the law of school finance adequacy, suitability and meaningful access to funding in opinions in 2003 and 2005; and in 2005 the court developed the law in all the issues the court has confronted since 1989.

In 2013 and last year, the District Court in Austin heard the case, and wrote the most complete and detailed explanation of the law and the facts of the system yet. It held the system is inefficient because all Texas students do not have substantially equal access to adequate funds; unsuitable in the structure, operation and funding; inadequate because it does not accomplish a general diffusion of knowledge due to insufficient funding; and creates a statewide property tax.

The court also found specific violations of these provisions because of the lack of adequate funding for the education of low income children and English language learners.

This sets the stage for the arguments Tuesday. The system is still inefficient, inequitable and inadequately funded. It is not suitable to meet the demands of the Texas Constitution or the needs of our students and community. The Supreme Court should uphold the District Court decision.

To clarify the constitutional standard for the Legislature and for the public, the court must strengthen the equity tests it has used. The court evidenced a clear commitment to equity in its 1989 and 1991 decisions, but moved to a more complex and vague set of standards in its 1995 and 2005 opinions.

The comparison of Texas funding to other states, and a clear record of inadequacy of programs and opportunities in even the richer districts shows the inadequacy of the system.

The Texas Supreme Court must make it clear that every Texas student has the right to live in a district that can raise the same amount of funds as any other district at any tax rate that district residents will support. And the state formulas — and total funding — must account for the legitimate differences in costs among students and districts.

It is the only way to treat all of our students equally, as demanded by our constitution.

The dilemma facing the court is the same faced by the Texas Legislature through the years. My mentor, Dr. Jose Cardenas of the Intercultural Development Research Association, said it best:

“What kind of a system can be devised that will provide all children an equal educational opportunity and still allow for a better education for privileged children?”

Al Kauffman is a professor of law at St. Mary’s University School of Law. As an attorney for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, he was the lead counsel for the Edgewood parties in the school finance lawsuit from 1984 to 2002.

Al Kauffman is a professor of law at St. Mary’s University School of Law. He wrote and filed the original Texas school financing case in 1984 and was lead counsel for the plaintiffs from 1984 to 2002.

[Photo by DoDEA/Flickr]

News Roundup: Confederates, Cookies, and Cream
Statues taken down, Blue Bell returns, all is well

Say Goodbye, Jeff: The Sons of Confederate Veterans failed to find a sympathetic ear at the Texas Supreme Court, and on Sunday morning the UT-Austin administration removed the statues of Confederate President Jefferson Davis and U.S. President Woodrow Wilson (who was also an SCV, although UT’s official reason for his removal is “symmetry” on the South Mall). After cleaning and some restoration, the statues will be moved elsewhere on campus (Davis will most likely be displayed as an artifact at the Briscoe Center). Last week, state district Judge Karin Crump ruled that the university has authority over the statues, and that the Sons have no standing to obstruct the process. An appeal to theThird Court of Appeals was also rejected, and the group reportedly requested, without success, an emergency injunction from the Supreme Court. The hearing before Crump was notable mainly for thehyperbolic rhetoric of SCV attorney Kirk Lyons, who compared moving the statues (to other venues on campus) to the destruction of ancient monuments by the Taliban or ISIS, and the SCV’s lawsuit to the bravery of the Chinese students “standing before the tanks” in Tiananmen Square. In a statement, Houston state Sen. Rodney Ellis said of the court’s decision, “I’m pleased that, once again, UT can begin the process of removing the Jefferson Davis statue from the campus’ Main Mall. We shouldn’t glorify people whose main claim to historical relevance stems from their defense of human slavery.” – Michael King

(Blue) Bells Will Be Ringing: H-E-B announced that it expects first delivery of the newly produced Blue Bell Ice Cream – after a listeria outbreak forced it to temporarily close earlier this year – to begin Monday at Austin stores. “Due to the limited production capacity from Blue Bell’s Alabama facility,” H-E-B announced Saturday, “Blue Bell will re-enter our market in five phases. Each of these phases was determined by Blue Bell. All Austin area H-E-B stores will begin receiving Blue Bell deliveries on Mon., Aug. 31 in addition to stores in Bastrop, Buda, Dripping Springs, Elgin, Georgetown, Kyle, La Grange, Leander, Pflugerville, Round Rock, Burnet, Kingsland, and Marble Falls.” The specific times of availability were not announced, and the initial flavors will be limited: Home Style Vanilla, Cookies and Cream, Dutch Chocolate, and The Great Divide. – M.K. 

Check out the full post for more Austin headlines! 

Hawaii Supreme Court hears Mauna Kea telescope case

Hawaii Supreme Court hears Mauna Kea telescope case

HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii’s Supreme Court has heard oral arguments in a case involving building one of the world’s largest telescopes on Mauna Kea. Hawane Rio stands in front of the Hawaii Supreme Court where arguments about the Thirty Meter Telescope project are happening Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015 in Honolulu. Hawaii’s Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments in a case involving building one of…

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