Tuesday, December 8, 2009

"Universal" Healthcare?

Don't want to pass a universal healthcare bill because then you might have to pay for someone else's abortion? How about this - I don't want to pay for ANY of your healthcare. Not your teeth cleanings or your back surgery or your cancer treatment or your flu shot. I don't want to pay for your contact lenses or stitches or your vasectomy. I'd rather let all you religious control freaks sit there in PAIN so that you can feel the harshness of your actions towards other people.

I'm better then that, though. I'm not going to try to pass a bill to deny you the healthcare that you want or need because that's not what a UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE BILL is all about. You can't pick and choose which treatments are provided with universal healthcare based on your individual and distorted sense of morality. The matter of fact is...ABORTION IS LEGAL. Deal with it.

Stop trying to prevent Universal Healthcare by claiming that you have the right to choose which healthcare treatments I can and cannot get. And please, once and for all STOP trying to deny people access and control over their own bodies - especially if that access is made easier by having more money (private insurance). If you can't see how that is fiscal discrimination in healthcare then you clearly have no business even having an opinion on this matter. Go back to your church and pray that one day you might not be so stupid and close-minded.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

**Spoiler Alert** This Week on TV

This Week on TV, "The Big Bang Theory" saw Leonard and company go on a camping trip and accidentaly eat pot brownies. For the rest of the episode, all jokes were some version of the following:

Leonard, Howard and Raj eat special cookies. 
Leonard, Howard and Raj immediately develop intense hunger, even before they finish said cookies.

or this:

Leonard, Howard and Raj forget about the astronomical event that they went camping to see because they are so set on eating the brisket Howard's mom sent with him.

Thank you, Mr. Lorre, we get it; weed sometimes makes you want to eat. It's not funny when you make the same joke over and over again. Actually, it wasn't funny the first time. And I was high when I watched it. Plus, if you'd ever smoked pot in your entire life you'd know that it could take up to two hours after you ingest marijuana for it to begin having an effect. Who did you think you were making laugh by writing an episode like this? The stoners? No way - its too inaccurate (unless they are egotystical stoners and like to laugh at dumb versions of themselves). The stuck up straight arrows? Probably. Crazy folk like that tend to laugh at other people's actions if they don't agree with them. It makes them feel better about themselves. And by crazy folk, I mean weak folk. And by weak folk, I mean you, Chuck Lorre.

This Week on TV, "GLEE" saw Mr. Schuester break the Glee Club into partnerships so they could perform duets. Rachel gets partnered with Schuester and develops a desperate crush for him. Schuester gets it into his head that because "these young girls are so fragile," singing to Rachel is the only way to let her down easy. Pillsbury tries to coach him on during his "your crush is ridiculous" performance to Rachel, but she ends up falling speechlessly in lust herself after hearing his sweet voice. Kirk gets paired with Finn and desperately tries to woo him over to the other team (if your slow, I mean the all-boys team. If your still slow, I give up). Quinn's mother discovers that Quinn is pregnant. The mother is so desperate to hide it from her controlling, asshole husband that she pretends not to notice the pregnancy.

Is it just me or is every single woman in this episode DESPERATE around the male characters? The show has been surprisingly good at being fair about these things so far and I get that it's a satire, but every female character in last night's episode was so desperate that they would have killed to get the affection of the men they were in lust with. And the men looked on at them with disgust (watch the scene where Rachel first sings a ballad with Schuester - the look on his face says it all). I'm not saying that the men in last night's episode of Glee were perfectly portrayed either -- the episode clearly has problems -- but did it have to focus SO much on desperate girls (and Kirk, who is constantly compared to teenage girls simply because of his sexuality)? Come on GLEE, I expected more from you. In the meantime, the jury is still out on this one..

Thursday, November 12, 2009

"Catholic" Blackmail

The Catholic Archdiocese of DC have just issued an ultimatium threating to halt all charity work they provide in the district unless the proposed gay marriage laws are taken off the books. Need I say more?

A Few Words on Perspective

I'd like to clarify a few things that I think may have been misunderstood about this blog. Universal truth is not something that I believe in or support. That is why I choose to be neither theist or atheist. That is why I choose not to put down other people's views when they claim that an alien named Xenu came to earth. And that is why I choose to believe that my viewpoints are just that; VIEWpoints.

On the other hand, one thing that I do believe in very much is the power of the internet. Blogs, twitter, facebook, tumblr and even going back to livejournal - these are all fabulous tools to use in order to express ourselves. OUR viewpoints. My blog (appropriately titled "Byrds View") is not meant to hold answers to any so-called universal truths. It is not meant to be "right" 100% of the time. However, it is meant to be logical and well thought-out. I encourage my readers to challenge me when they believe I am wrong and to express their own points of view in the comments section. However, please understand that this blog focuses its attention on what I believe to be true and not what I believe to be "universal truths."

Capiche? If you don't like where the train's heading, then get off at any time.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Sex and the Pity

After watching more then three seasons of “Sex and the City,” I’ve come to the realization that it is the turning point of feminism in our culture. Back in the 90’s, before Carrie Bradshaw walked down the street in her Prada shoes, women were on their way to becoming the multi-tasking leaders of modern society. We were going to be the heads of industry AND remain the heads of household that we really always were.  We were going to tackle it all by “coming out” of the closet as the brains behind almost every operation. (Come on, would you really deny that behind nearly every great “man” there is a woman in the driver's seat?)

Now shoot 10 years down the line to 2009. With six years of “Sex and the City” under her Gucci belt along with a hit movie and a sequel on the way, Carrie Bradshaw has become to our generation of women what Eve, Miriam, Hera, Cinderella, Elizabeth Bennet and Mary “Richards” Tyler Moore were before her; iconic female characters. Some of these characters have been so influential that they have millions of people today still telling the story of their lives and the choices they made. Now, I’m all for giving credit where credit is due and I think it’s fantastic that young girls have a modern fictional role model to look up to. The problem is that when people look up to biblical Miriam or fairytale Cinderella, they see women that worked through the very worst of times to achieve the very best of outcomes. When people think of Carrie Bradshaw they come up all shoes and sex.

PET PEEVE ALERT. I think its downright disgusting when people draw conclusions about a piece of entertainment or art without ever having experienced its effect first.

Because of my problem with drawing baseless conclusions, I took the time out to actually sit down and watch more then half of the six seasons of “Sex and the City.” I have to admit; the show is down right addictive. It’s fun, it’s entertaining and it’s well written. The concept is fresh, the character arches are developed perfectly over the course of the six seasons and I would even go so far as to say that it is “touching” at times. We can all agree that my problems with the show have nothing to do with the creative or entertainment aspects of the finished product. My issues are purely ideological.  Which brings us to…

In case you’ve been living under a rock for the past ten years, Carrie is supposed to be the “prototypical” single career woman in modern day New York. The idea is that Carrie and her friends openly talk about sex in ways that women have thus far been denied the pleasure of doing on national television.  Each week Carrie gets together over lunch with her “lesbian” fiend (Miranda), her sexually deviant friend (Samantha) and her “housewife” friend (Charlotte) to discuss the men that they fucked that week. And it’s sextastic.  They discuss sex more openly then any show – male or female dominated - has ever really done before. In that sense, “Sex and the City” does not set the new standard for women talking about sex, it sets the standard for ALL shows on television talking openly about sex. The problem is that “Sex and the City” promotes itself as a show about “modern day career women” when it is really just a vehicle to talk about sex. Although it’s a fantastic idea to have a show that sexually liberates the population, it’s NOT a good idea for that show to parade around as if it is a feminist masterpiece.

If the writers behind “Sex and the City” really understood the difficulties of being a strong, single career woman in NYC, then they wouldn’t have their main characters sit around and talk about boys or shoes all the time! They wouldn’t have Carrie’s entire character arch revolve around whether or not she is with a man. As it stands, with Carrie and friends discussing men or shoes alone, it gives the impression that strong women can only be identified by their fashion accessories or the trail of men they leave sexually yearning after them.  I have dozens of friends that have modeled their own lives after Carrie Bradshaw and in doing so have flushed all the potential they have to give to society down the toilet. Instead, they focus their attention on sleeping with men and shopping for designer clothing. It’s as if Carrie wrote a column that feeds right into their brain saying “you’re not worth anything if you don’t have a man and 50 sets of shoes in your closet.”

Think of how much further along our society and culture would be if, as a general trend, young women (that’s more then 50% of the population) would stop focusing their attention on shopping and start worrying more about things like the environment, civil rights, the space program or medical research. Drop the old-fashioned “someone needs to stay at home with the kids” and think of how much we could accomplish if we had the entire population working and functioning together to achieve greatness.  TV shows like “Sex and the City” show our culture what the “norms” are. If the norms in our society are for strong, college-educated women to devote all of their time and energy towards men, then we are in big trouble. This show has done more damage to young women then anything else in our culture. Lets get back on track towards becoming the multi-tasking leaders we are meant to be. I implore all young people, men and women alike, to ignore the fashion propaganda in "Sex and the City" and instead focus on the message that could have been; that strong, independent and intelligent women are here to stay and are going to help make the world a better place.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009