Featured

Open Thread………………………………..May 1

Glastonbury Tor at sunrise on Beltane
Glastonbury Tor at sunrise on Beltane

May 1 is significant to people in and around the United Kingdom because  of Celtic folk lore.  Many people celebrate Beltane, or a spring fertility ritual.   Americans tend to celebrate May Day.  That custom has sort of gone the way of the high button shoes.

Regardless, May 1 is a time of great merry-making, especially among the young.

EDINBURGH, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL 30: Beltane Fire Society performers celebrate the coming of summer by participating in the Beltane Fire Festival on Calton Hill April 30, 2014 in Edinburgh, Scotland. The event celebrates the ending of winter and is a revival of the ancient Celtic and Pagan festival of Beltane, the Gaelic name for the month of May. The festival was first organized in the mid 1980's. (Photo by Roberto Ricciuti/Getty Images)
Young stags romp

Bearded student barred from his own graduation

beard 2

Washingtonpost.com:

“I refused to shave because I felt as if that was ridiculous being that I went the whole school year with my facial hair,” he told The Post in a text message. “Plus, students from other schools in the district who graduated earlier that week marched with their facial hair, so why couldn’t I?”

Jones said he refused several times — then they asked for his gown.

“My parents came down and had a conversation with the school board members, discussing why they weren’t letting me march,” he said, “but it seemed as the superintendent wasn’t trying to hear anything they had to say.”

He added: “I just watched my graduation from the stands.”

Davis said Jones, a teenage father, worked hard in school, earning a 4.0 GPA and excelling in sports — track, football and basketball.

 
Read More

Virginia: Do reinstated voting rights mean easier reinstated gun rights?

gun-felon-illustration

Washingtonpost.com:

Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s order last month restoringthe voting rights of 206,000 felons had an unintended consequence: It’s now easier for those ex-offenders to regain the right to own guns.

Before the order, felons who wanted to legally possess firearms first had to go through the process of having their civil rights reinstated, including the right to vote, to sit on a jury and to run for office.

That process — which involved submitting forms that were scrutinized by the secretary of the commonwealth’s staff, using the governor’s authority — is no longer in place.

Instead, felons who have completed their sentences can go straight to the step of petitioning the circuit court for firearm rights. Prosecutors review those petitions and can intervene if they believe a felon should continue to be barred from owning a weapon.

Days after McAuliffe (D) signed the April 22 voting-rights order, which was strongly opposed by leading Republicans in the GOP-controlled legislature, Secretary of the Commonwealth Kelly Thomasson warned commonwealth’s attorneys of a potential increase in gun rights requests.

Read More

PWC School Board reduces teacher day by 30 minutes

apple

bristowbeat.com:

The Prince William County School Board voted five to three Wednesday to reduce the length of the teacher workday from 7.5 hours to 7 hours.

The change will revert school work hours to the length they were prior to 2012; the measure goes into effect for the 2016-17 school year.

Potomac School board member Justin Wilk supported the action, along with Chairman Ryan Sawyers, Lillie Jessie (Occoquan), Willie Deutsch (Coles) and Diane Raulston (Neabsco.)

Gil Trenum (Brentsville), Alyson Satterwhite (Gainesville) and Loree Williams (Woodbridge) voted against the measure, saying they would rather support other changes to allow teachers more flexibility and autonomy in their use of planning time.

Wilk posed the the issue months ago, claiming teachers felt the initial 2012 vote was a punitive move against them.

Members were united on the need to boost teacher morale.

“I think, amazingly, we’re all on the same page,” Sawyers said.

Before the vote, Dr. Jennifer Cassata, Director of Accountability, presented the finding of a survey PWCS gave to teachers to help the administration better understand their feelings about the additional 30 minutes.

Good for the School Board.  Finally.   Yes, the addition of the half hour 4 years ago was a slap in the face.  It simply said no real raise but give us more time and like it.

No teacher walks in when the bell rings and walks out at dismissal.  There are always mandatory meetings, conferences or some other non-teaching duties that must be attended to.  This move by the School Board was symbolic but important to morale.

Here’s a novel idea–why not shorten the day AND allow more flexibility?  How about adding a couple personal days to those 3 days teachers already get?  How about making them unrestricted personal days for a full week?  There’s a start at saying the School Board  knows they are screwing their employees.  It’s sort of an “I’m sorry.”

Until the Board of County Supervisors stops playing on the cheap and supports education, this is just how things will be.  Classrooms will be over-crowded and teachers will be stressed.  The BOCS is too busy playing politics to notice.

The last laugh will be when no one goes into the field because of the crappy conditions.   Meanwhile, good for the SB for getting rid of the dreaded extended school day.

Zimmerman taunts Trayvon Martin’s parents

dailybeast.com:

It wasn’t enough for George Zimmerman to kill Trayvon Martin.

In an interview with The Daily Beast this week, Zimmerman made it clear he has no remorse about shooting the 17-year-old boy to death in Sanford, Florida, and bears outright hostility for the parents whose son he took away forever.“They didn’t raise their son right. He attacked a complete stranger and attempted to kill him,” Zimmerman said of Martin.

“Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin did everything they could to capitalize on her son’s death,” he said. “She was never a mother figure to him. Tracy Martin couldn’t have cared less about their son. He treated him like a dog without a leash.”

Four years after Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin, the acquitted killer is trying to turn a profit on the gun he used to do it.
Read More

Judge finds DC gun law violates right of self defense

guns-in-DC

Washingtonpost.com:

 

A federal judge ruled Tuesday that a key provision of the District’s new gun law is probably unconstitutional, ordering D.C. police to stop requiring individuals to show “good reason” to obtain a permit to carry a firearm on the streets of the nation’s capital.

U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon found that the law violates the “core right of self-defense” granted in the Second Amendment, setting aside arguments from District officials that the regulation is needed to prevent crime and protect the public.

“The enshrinement of constitutional rights necessarily takes certain policy choices off the table,” Leon wrote in a 46-page opinion, quoting a 5-to-4 Supreme Court decision in 2008 in another District case that established a constitutional right to keep firearms inside one’s home.

Leon said the right applies both inside and outside the home.

“The District’s understandable, but overzealous, desire to restrict the right to carry in public a firearm for self-defense to the smallest possible number of law-abiding, responsible citizens is exactly the type of policy choice the Justices had in mind,” he wrote.

So what happens from here?   What does all this mean?

The Tuesday ruling imposed a preliminary injunction, pending further litigation. The decision means the city cannot deny concealed-carry permits to residents who do not show a good reason for needing a gun but otherwise would qualify for the permits.

What about non-residents who feel the need to carry a weapon inside the District of Columbia?

 

 

Alex Meyers: Revolutionary

So where would you have Alex Meyers use the rest room?  He seems like a guy to me.  I would chase him out of the ladies room in a New York minute.

I think the problem some of us have is that we can’t wrap our heads around our gender not always matching our genitalia.   I can’t imagine identifying as a male.  The closest I can get to it is attempting to use the bathroom standing up.  I got a good hard spanking for that stunt!    That has nothing to do with transgender.

I admit that “transgender” confuses me.  It probably confuses most of us who classify ourselves as “normal.”

Regardless, discrimination is simply wrong.

Erickson accuses Republicans of hypocrisy

RedState Editor-in-Chief Erick Erickson makes comments to attendees at the 2014 Red State Gathering, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014, in Fort Worth, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Washingtonexaminer.com:

Conservative activist and radio host Erick Erickson, distraught at Republican voters choosing Donald Trump as their nominee, wants the GOP to officially apologize to former president Bill Clinton.

In a Friday blog post, Erickson accused Republicans of hypocrisy for having impeached Clinton in the 1990s for his conduct toward women, while now backing a “womanizer” in their own party.

“Republicans owe Bill Clinton an apology for impeaching him over lies and affairs while now embracing a pathological liar and womanizer,” said Erickson. “That apology will not be forthcoming. In fact, for years Republicans have accused the Democrats of gutter politics and shamelessness. Now the Republicans themselves have lost their sense of shame.”

Erickson has long been a Trump critic and recently admitted that he will not support the presumptive GOP nominee, nor will he support Hillary Clinton, who is likely to win the Democratic nomination.

“On the campaign trail, Trump was more a pathological liar than Bill Clinton ever was,” said Erickson. “He smeared his opponents, their wives, and their families. He embraced 9/11 trutherisms that George Bush was to blame for the attacks, he peddled malignant, false stories about Ted Cruz’s father, and few Republicans ever called on him to account. Many gave him passes on the lies they would never give to Bill Clinton.”

I absolutely agree with with Erick Erickson.   (Gasp)  How can anyone criticize any other politician for lying and morals if that person defends or supports Donald Trump.  Hypocrisy is at an all time high in elephant-villa for those who criticize anyone other than Trump.  If Erick Erickson thinks someone is sexist and repugnant, then geez, it must be true.

Isn’t he the guy who constantly demands that women get back to the kitchen and cook his dinner?

The world has turned upside down.

School Board Meeting Briefs: The forked tongue?

What’s going on at school board meetings in PWC?  I am hearing just horrible stories coming out of those meetings–stories of teachers being threatened, students in certain districts being threatened as far as funding goes,

Tell me it isn’t so!!  I decided I would go look for myself.  I tried to find the video of last night’s meeting.  Talk about a wild goose chase.  Finding the video of a meeting is difficult and definitely not intuitive.

I finally was directed to the little TV icon on the main website, www.pwcs.edu.  Finally.  When I got to the site, guess what!  The board meeting had not been posted.

Come on school board site.  You have more resources than the non-school part of the county and their board meetings are up and running several hours after the meeting is over.  You can do better.

If what I hear is true, that board meeting archive will probably disappear anyway.  However, before that, I would like to watch the May 4, 2016 meeting  for myself.

Every day I offer up thanks…that I no longer work for Prince William County.

Disruptive protest: No place in a civilized society

Towleroad.com:

Anti-LGBT Bible-bearing Christians entered Target stores in Tennessee, Illinois, and Oregon this week telling customers they need to repent for shopping there because of the transgender bathroom policy.

Says the man:

“Target this is your wake up call. The Bible says that from the beginning God made them male and female. He didn’t make them transvestites. He made them male and female…Target, this is your warning. You will be judged according to God’s standards. Not man’s, but God’s…You need to repent…You will be judged. And if there are Christians in here, supporting this abomination, shame on you! … But you justify this place. You have to stand by the bathrooms because perverts can go in there. Because transvestites allowed.”

The customers aren’t amused, many of them telling him to “shut up and leave.”

In Bradley, Illinois one of these “Christians” put a mall on lockdown and prompted a massive police response because store shoppers thought the man was an “active shooter”….

So is this what it has come to? This dude obviously doesn’t understand the difference in transgender and transvestite. I seriously doubt that I would be able to detect a transvestite in the bathroom.

It is obviously anyone’s own choice whether to shop at Target or not. If you dislike their policy, write them, tell them, and go elsewhere. No one has the right to go in a store and disrupt the shopping experience for others.

I might also add this is how I feel about political gatherings. No candidate should have to hop a fence to go speak. A rally is not the time to act out, throw objects at cops and disrupt society. We are a nation of laws and not thugs. We aren’t a banana republic.

What if you don’t like the candidate? Protest peacefully or stay home. Political rallies cost the taxpayer a fortune anyway. Let’s not pile on more because of disruptive, criminal behavior.

This “Operation Rescue” approach to politics and ideas we don’t like is just un-American.

 

Trump becomes presumptive nominee of the GOP

Trump has won Indiana.  Ted Cruz has dropped out of the race. Kasich is still in but has no chance of winning.

Where does that leave the Republican Party?  Has Trump changed the face of the traditional GOP?

The pundits and talking heads have gone wild.  The Trumpites have been seen as the usurpers and the new face of what defines a Republican.  Supposedly they want change and feel that ‘the establishment” has been unresponsive to them.

I don’t have an opinion at this point.  I am just sitting back and watching the circus.

Your opinion, por favor.  What is this phenomena?  Has Trump replaced what we normally think of as the GOP?

Israeli killer goes to prison for life

ben david

Washingtonpost.com:

 The ringleader of a group that kidnapped and burned alive a Palestinian teenager two years ago — a revenge killing that shocked many here because of its savagery — was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison plus 20 years.

Yosef Haim Ben-David was convicted of murder and kidnapping last month. Ben-David, 32, the owner of an eyewear shop in Jerusalem, lived in a Jewish settlement in the West Bank. He is married with a young daughter and is the son of an ultra-
Orthodox rabbi.

The killing of Mohammed Abu Khdeir in 2014 was part of a summer of violence that contributed to the war between Israel and the Islamist militant movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Before his sentence was read in court Tuesday evening, Ben-David made a brief statement. “I apologize for what happened,” he said. “I ask forgiveness of the family for all that happened.”

Ben-David said he had served as a volunteer for one of the emergency response teams that assist ambulance crews at the scenes of accidents and attacks. “I attended to both Jewish and Arab bodies,” he said. “I always considered the human form and respect for the dead to be holy.”

Good.  Ben-David did a horrible, evil deed.  His country, Israel,  found him, tried him,  found him guilty and sentenced him to prison for killing a Palestinian youth.   He is getting what he deserves.   Can we safely assume that when Palestinians  kill Jews their country will hunt them down, prosecute and sentence them to prison with equal vigor?  That doesn’t seem to be happening.

 

Indiana: Home of the gay Doritos

Rainbow-Doritos

Huffingtonpost.com:

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signed an executive order Wednesday that bans what he called “gay colors” to be worn by boys in public elementary and secondary schools in the state

Pence referred to pink, chartreuse, teal and magenta, in particular, as “gateway colors” for young boys who might have an inclination toward homosexuality.

“Governor Pence believes that if boys wear clothes with colors traditionally worn by young girls, this can cause gender confusion for the boy,” said Hugh Strait, a spokesman for the governor.

Pence’s announcement comes as the state prepares for Tuesday’s presidential primary.

 

Read More

Virginia Republican Convention: WTF?

corey2

Washingtonpost.com:

 Supporters of Ted Cruz dominated a slate of delegates that Virginia Republicans chose Saturday at their state convention, further demonstrating the Texas senator’s mastery of the delegate-selection process.

Of the 13 national delegates picked by party activists here, 10 are Cruz supporters and three support Donald Trump. The tally represents the biggest chunk up for grabs of the 49 total delegates who will represent the state at the national convention in Cleveland this summer.

Despite bruising primary ­losses around the country, Cruz is betting that Trump will not make it to the 1,237 delegates needed to clinch the party’s nomination, and he is working to woo delegates who would be loyal to him at a brokered convention.

Cruz came in a distant third in Virginia in the March 1 primary but had enough supporters among the 2,610 party activists who filled an arena at James Madison University on Saturday to win critical delegates.

 

Read More