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

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Gay-mers Advance

Check out Dragon Age Origins - its the first major RPG video game to be released with a full option for same-sex relationships. With the ridiculous crazy amount of gay people in the gaming community, its  about time these RPG's caught up!! Plus I wanna get me some mage on mage action going on.. (that's wizards for all you "normal" folk)

Friday, October 30, 2009

In Weed We Trust

Republican Gil Kerlikowske, Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, gave a statement this week about how both liberal and conservative interpretations of the White House's new weed policy are "wrong". Kerlikowske claims that neither side has it right, but then he goes on to argue against legalizing marijuana for almost the entirety of his statement.

 "Legalization is being sold as being a cure to ending violence in Mexico, as a cure to state budget problems, as a cure to health problems. The American public should be skeptical of anyone selling one solution as a cure for every single problem."

Uh. You mean like the bible? Or an all-powerful god? Or Obama? (if you're asking yourself, "is byrd really comparing Weed to god?" The answer is a definite Yes)

"To test the idea of legalizing and taxing marijuana, we only need to look at already legal drugs -- alcohol and tobacco.  We know that the taxes collected on these substances pale in comparison to the social and health care costs related to their widespread use."

...because as every Director of National Drug Control Policy knows, there's no reason to separately evaluate the safety of different drugs. They all have the same effects anyway, right?

"In a little over three months, my office will deliver to President Obama a National Drug Control Strategy that will strike a balance between public health and public safety, recognizing that reducing demand through a community-wide approach is critical to our success."

Dude. You need to go smoke a fuckin joint -- or get laid. Pick one.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Scientology vs. The World

Can someone tell me why people think Scientology is any different then any other made up religion? This article from columnist David Gibson details director Paul Haggis's departure from the religion, but it also does a fantastic job of coming off seemingly-unbiased while at the same time completely throwing Scientology under the rug.

My favorite part is when Gibson goes on about "real" religions:

"One mark of a 'real' religion is its ability to reform or adapt."

Hahahahah. Tell that to the Catholics.

Or the part where he goes on about how outlandish Scientology is:

"The disclosure of the belief that an alien ruler named Xenu brought people to earth 75 million years ago in jet planes and planted them around volcanoes is one of the more unusual tenets that have come to light."

How about the idea that a flood wiped out all the living creatures on earth except for one male and one female of each kind -- or the idea that a burning bush spoke to a man (to top that off, it was really god speaking!) -- or the concept that a dead man is actually his own father, a holy ghost and himself all at the same time. Please. I can go on.

A Call for REALITY Television

This years "Dancing With the Stars" saw a deliciously abundant amount of inter-racial partnering. From Macy Gray/Jonathan Roberts to Michael Irvin/Anna Demidova or singer Mya with Dmitry Chaplin, the show was a mixed race fiesta. Its about time America's interracial couples get the representation they deserve! Even if it has to be on a reality show with fake partnerings.

So the question becomes, where are the same gender partners?? Think about it. Homophobes are afraid that federally recognizing same sex unions will lead to a larger gay rights agenda or 'social acceptance of homosexuality.'  If they are trying to prevent the government from passing laws because they are afraid that it might lead to civilians endorsing gays, then lets get Americans to endorse gays first! Then they'll have no arguments against it.

Here's the plan: If ABC were to put a same-gender couple on "Dancing With the Stars" (I suggest two girls for several reasons), the controversy alone would generate millions of viewers! Americans would endorse homosexuality by watching the show, even if they disagree with the morality of it. We've already done it with Queer Eye, now let's go mainstream on ABC! And the stars would be HOT. They would be the first openly sexualized gay partners on TV (think of the sexy dancing...). ABC would make boatloads of money and no doubt continue with a same gender couple on the next season. By the end of the show's run, "Dancing with the Stars" will have proven that Americans embrace homosexuals. The homophobes would lose any argument about homosexuality being a "sexual perversion only present in societal outcasts" or whatever hateful words they are using at the time.


Vicki Dummer
SVP Alternative Series
ABC Network
500 S. Buena Vista St.
Burbank, CA 91521-4551

John Saade
SVP Alternative Series
ABC Network
500 S. Buena Vista St.
Burbank, CA 91521-4551

Friday, October 23, 2009

A Slippery Slope Argument for the Fools

The close-minded folks had something very interesting to say after they voted against the important hate-crimes legislation that was passed yesterday.

"Social conservatives said the hate crimes bill would violate the First Amendment, and would be a step toward a larger gay rights agenda they oppose."

Fools, here's a slippery slope argument for you:

Or this one:

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Freedom of Relgion: Swedish Lutherans to Officiate Gay Marraiges

In the name of protecting the constitutional right to practice whatever cracked up religion you choose, gay marriage should be made legal in the United States - unless all those anti-equality religious folks believe that freedom of religion does not apply to Lutherans (not to mention countless other less popular religions that believe in preserving the sanctity of all families).

A Gleeful Reference to Niel Diamond

Watched Glee last night. One of the characters said something that really set me off, which is upsetting because they've done a surprisingly good job at not doing that so far in a show that tackles many sensitive issues. The token Jew kid referred to Neil Diamond as a "Musical Jewish Icon." Now -- I can be sensitive to religion sometimes, but everyone's been asked the question by someone, "Are you a Christian American or an American Christian?" In other words, which is more important to you, nationality or religion. The second word (in this case the noun) is the more important word, the one that you are, while the first word describes how you are who you are (i.e. a Christian American is an American person who happens to practice Christianity).

In a similar vein, to think of Neil Diamond as a "Musical Jewish Icon" is to think of him as a Jewish person who happens to write music. Neil Diamond may very well have valued himself as a Jew before musician, but what is more important here is that when the world thinks of Neil Diamond they don't sit around and talk about how he made great latkes last Chanuka, they remember Sweet Caroline and the many other contributions he has made to music. He's a Musical Icon, not a Jewish Icon. Its really that simple. In a television program that is intended to mimic your average [musical!] high school, to refer to Neil Diamond's identity as a Jew before referring to him as a worldly musician shows a lack of respect for his talents/image and an eyebrow-raisingly high amount of attention on his religion. It's downright bigoted. And don't kid yourself, we all know it's these small acts of bigotry that people pick up on and dupilicate.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Catholicism! Its the new religion-to-go!

If you're Anglican and you don't agree with the morals that your church promotes (such as ordaining those women things as priests), try switching over to a religion that does a better job of cherry-picking the biblical laws you deem worthy of abiding. The Catholic Church is now making it easy as a flood for  Anglicans who have decided they don't want to follow their church's teachings to convert to Catholicism.

Henry VIII must be turning over in his grave...oh wait no that's just the hell fire he's suffering from now that his many "marriages" were actually adultery/sin..

Friday, August 28, 2009

Why I Don't Picket For Polygamy

There have been a lot of slippery slope argument used in the debate over gay marriage. One of the slopes - that gay marriage will lead to polygamy - has caught my attention. First off, fuck slippery slope arguments. Lets not debate other laws that might be passed if this one is, lets debate this law. What if the people 100 years ago who argued that allowing women to vote in elections would someday force allowing pets to vote had won?  Lets not discuss marrying donkeys or whales or more then one person, lets discuss gay marriage and that alone. Grow up and stop making ridiculous excuses.

All that being said, I don't see any reason why someone should be prevented from marrying another person they love. There are plenty of communal styles of living (kibbutz..tribe) that have proven wonderful environments to raise children,  sometimes even better then the so-called “nuclear family.” If you think that polygamy would promote some sort of confusion for children or jealousy between spouses then simply don’t get one. There is no reason to make it illegal. The law in this country is not based on your irrational fears. It is supposed to protect people from harm and especially from facists that want to impose their views on others.

Though I believe that we should have the right to participate in polygamous marriages, you will not find me out marching for my right to marry multiple partners. The reason is simple. Gay people and straight people fundamentally differ on the topic of the gender attraction. Straight-likes prefer the opposite sex while "homosexualists" like their own kind. You've heard it before - just like people are born with blonde hair or a big nose they are also born with sexuality. Any person that has gotten them self off will tell you that they cannot control what turns them on. Some people are attracted to curves and others to dick. Because of this fundamental difference, a marriage between a gay person and a heterosexual is a lie. They cannot participate in "opposite sex" sex the way a husband and wife should, yet they pretend to. A là lie. A marriage based on a lie is no marriage at, its even null in judeo-christian religions. Under today's laws, a gay person cannot participate in marriage.  If that is not inequality -- if that is not cause to bring out the old civil rights posters -- then I don't know what is. Prohibiting homosexual marriage is depriving an entire class of citizens of the rights and benefits that another class enjoys.

Polygamy and Monogamy, on the other hand, are both lifestyle choices (though the latter is imposed upon people in our modern culture without many of them even realizing it -- don't get me started). There is nothing in our DNA that tells us we should be lifelong partners with only one person or with multiple people. Some psychiatrists would disagree with that statement and might even point out that human sexuality is prone to wanting multiple sex partners. But I would never suggest outlawing monogamy because I believe people have the right to choose their own lifestyle.  Since "ogamy's" are choices that all people equally either have the legal right to make or not, there is no discrimination involved. Polygamy is outlawed for everyone alike instead of isolating a certain group. Is it infringement on our freedom? Absolutely. But it's not a matter of inequality and eliminating inequality is my priority.

One day, after gay marriage is legal, you will find me fighting fights like the polygamy style one. Until then, I wish all you polygamists well. You have my support, if not my picket sign (just yet).

The "Church" Maintains

Check out this article that acknowledges both sides of the gay marriage debate.

My thoughts to you, Michael, are that you seem like a relatively smart guy. I think your answer is right in your own words:

"However the Church maintains that male-female martial bonds invoke a unique relationship that simply cannot be met by a same-sex relationship."

The church MAINTAINS??? The church wouldn't have to "maintain" anything if it were actual fact. They "maintain" that stance because they know that they have no proof. And come on, not ALL heterosexual sex is about love and procreation..a lot of it is just about fucking. Believe me, I've been there.