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Old 11-25-2013, 03:27 PM   #541
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Growing up my parents called me Alex P. Keaton, let's just put it that way.
That's too funny. That was my nickname until my mid-20's (I'm in my forties now).

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2. I don't think every issue is right/wrong, but there are some. Like same-sex marriage. You're right or you're wrong. You're for legalizing it (right) or you're against legalizing it (wrong). Issues like that don't have two legitimate arguments, quite honestly, and the longer we pretend that they do, the more damage we do.
Yes, there are some right/wrong issues. I don't think anyone in here is favor to legalize random killings - for instance. But many of the issues discussed here are controversial, and many are trying to work through them. Take something like gun control, this is not a win/lose item. Everyone supports SOME kind of gun control (even die heard don't want every day people with stinger missiles). Finding the best place to draw the line - there's where we need to have a good discussion. Same thing about SSM, many people accepted the Civil Union idea because it seemed to take care of legal obstacles that were unfair to homosexual partners.

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3. Name-calling is calling someone an asshole or an idiot. Identifying a bigot as a bigot is not name-calling, and there's an important distinction that has to be made there. If you think identifying someone as a bigot is name-calling, you're devaluing the impact of bigotry by making it seemingly less offensive than the perceived impoliteness of calling someone a bigot. You're also putting it on the same level as someone swearing out of frustration, when it's usually a much more considered approach that leads one to identify someone as a bigot.
Perhaps I need to consider this more - but in general, I try (and often fail) not to lock people into such boxes. I try to understand where the racist comes from as much as I try to understand why a homosexual man wants to marry. I also try to remember that everyone is a work in progress - just as you are (and you proved this through your own personal evolution regarding politics). I've known very few people that actually change their mind while being completely disregarded as a [INSERT INSULT]. I think that reason can prevail when emotion is pushed aside.
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Old 11-25-2013, 03:40 PM   #542
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my political beliefs have been pretty consistent since i was 17 or 18 years old, the main difference is that i keep them to myself pretty much everywhere but in here. i find that it's really unproductive to have political discussions in real life, either because people get really heated and angry with each other, or, in order to be nice, they find fake points of agreement for the sake of harmony. in many ways, i think this is one of the best things about the internet -- you have to really write to defend yourself in a forum, and you have to cite your sources, etc.
Very good point. Although, sources are usually helpful when they have data, otherwise they are just another opinion thrown into the mix.

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what's changed is that i think i'm much less idealistic than i used to be, and i think i see the downsides to my "positions" more than in the past, but i can't think of a major hot button issue that i've changed my mind on. however, i do think i say more, "yes, but ..." than i might have in the past. so, for example, while i might say that the ACA can and will likely work, i don't think it's the best solution to the health care crisis, but i do think it's the best one that's possible. does that make sense?
That's true, Irvine. I have seen you more critical of ACA than you have been on other issues.

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i'm glad you're back. i really am.
Thanks, Irvine. And I'm glad you stuck it out and remained in here.

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i couldn't agree more. my FB page is almost devoid of politics, and it's very, very rare that i get political on someone else's page. it's happened, and i almost always regret it. i've even been unfriended, but that was someone worth losing.
Yeah - FB is pretty much my place to share pics/happy or entertaining stories with my family and a few friends. I do see some useful band info coming through my feed - so it's also a decent medium to receive updates on the things you "like." I generally ignore anything political (especially memes). I do click on kitten or dog videos though.


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when there's little time, the HULK SMASH comes out.
LOL - classic!



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i will also say that i think there are posters, many now gone, who were much more effective at advocating their positions that i've ever been or will ever be. i think yolland, A_W, melon, sean, and anitram are as good as the forum gets, and i think they all do a better job than i do.
Agreed. These names you mention seemed like they could write paragraph after paragraph of GREAT stuff. I almost forgot about A_Wanderer...did he just fade away?



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i don't agree. to say, "there's racism in that statement" is different than saying, "you're a racist," and for someone to respond with, "don't call me a racist" is a way of avoiding the uncomfortable but very real truth that race, class, and gender all play their part in everyday life. one doesn't need to use the n-word to make a racist comment, and because one makes a racist comment doesn't mean that one is a racist. it's not only racists who sometimes say racist things.
Like I responded above, I need to consider this more.
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Old 11-25-2013, 03:42 PM   #543
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as much as I try to understand why a homosexual man wants to marry.


why did you get married?
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Old 11-25-2013, 03:55 PM   #544
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why did you get married?
Part love - part duty. I believe that one of my duties to our society was to marry and raise children.

If it was only love - then I would just go into a relation until the love/romance faded then find another relationship and then another...

In my own marriage - on the past 11 years the "feeling" of love brightened and dimmed and brightened again...but it is my sense of duty that keeps me married and faithful more than the ever-changing mood of love.
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Old 12-03-2013, 07:51 PM   #545
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I think we should all have a duty to society to be honorable and decent and set examples for children to bring them up to be decent worthwhile humans, with or without marriage,

no one takes a 'duty pledge' at marriage, not that it may not be a good idea.
when I was in Scouts, we did, come to think of it, I have remained a pretty decent citizen since then.
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Old 12-03-2013, 08:37 PM   #546
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I think it is a duty to be serious about marriage. Some people are so flippant about marriage and divorce, which really ruins the institution of marriage than anything. I think anyone considering marriage should make sure they are doing it for the right reasons, choosing their spouse for the right reasons, has all issues covered (children, location, finances, etc.) before they commit to actually making the marriage work. There's no guarantee a marriage would last, but I think being smart and making an effort could help it last.
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Old 12-03-2013, 10:47 PM   #547
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Michael F. Cannon of the Cato Institute testified in front of House Judiciary Committee today for the hearing on "The President's Constitutional Duty to Faithfully Execute the Laws". He Obama violated the Constitution with regard to the PPACA and its illegal subsidies and taxes.

Before anyone gets riled up before reading the speech, here's how he closes it:

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The concerns I share with you today are not borne of partisanship. Though I have worked for Republicans, I am not a Republican, for reasons that Democrats on this committee can readily appreciate. I am acutely aware of the last Republican president’s failures to execute the laws faithfully. In 2008, though I did not support him, I preferred the Democratic presidential candidate to the Republican candidate in part because he promised to curb such abuses by the executive. I have praised President Obama for doing more than even many libertarians to celebrate the gains in equality and freedom our nation has secured for women, for African-Americans, for gays, and for lesbians.

This president’s failure – or any president’s failure – to honor his constitutional duty to execute the laws faithfully is not a partisan issue. The fact that presidents from both parties violate this duty is cause not for solace. It is cause for even greater alarm, because it guarantees that presidents from both parties will replicate and even surpass the abuses of their predecessors as payback for past injustices. The result is that democracy and freedom will suffer no matter who occupies the Oval Office.
Congressional Testimony: The President's Failure To Execute Faithfully The PPACA - Forbes
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Old 12-04-2013, 02:49 PM   #548
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no one takes a 'duty pledge' at marriage,
What about "till death do us part?" Is that not a pledge?


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when I was in Scouts, we did, come to think of it, I have remained a pretty decent citizen since then.
I think the scouts do a great job of teaching/reinforcing the virtues of duty, honor, responsibility, courage, good citizenship...etc. That's why I have my son it. It's one thing to have "dad" tell you these things - it's another thing to have a group of people trying to live it out together.
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Old 12-04-2013, 09:56 PM   #549
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Michael F. Cannon of the Cato Institute testified in front of House Judiciary Committee today for the hearing on "The President's Constitutional Duty to Faithfully Execute the Laws". He Obama violated the Constitution with regard to the PPACA and its illegal subsidies and taxes.

Before anyone gets riled up before reading the speech, here's how he closes it:



Congressional Testimony: The President's Failure To Execute Faithfully The PPACA - Forbes
Who cares about an old, dusty document written by dead, white slave-holders? Forward!!
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:44 AM   #550
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Who cares about an old, dusty document written by dead, white slave-holders? Forward!!
George W. Bush certainly didn't, according to Cannon's testimony.
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Old 12-05-2013, 08:56 AM   #551
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George W. Bush certainly didn't, according to Cannon's testimony.

Much like with debt and deficits as well as health care where he once talked about how he wanted to set up exchanges to unleash the magic powers of the market and allow consumers to comparison shop between health plans in order to bring down the cost of health insurance, INDY only started to care on January 21, 2009.
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Old 12-05-2013, 11:21 PM   #552
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it's astonishing to me how anyone could not support the expansion of medicaid -- and universal health care, via the ACA or a single payer system -- after reading an article like this:

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Poor Black and Hispanic Men Are the Face of H.I.V.

By DONALD G. McNEIL Jr.
Published: December 4, 2013 247 Comments

The AIDS epidemic in America is rapidly becoming concentrated among poor, young black and Hispanic men who have sex with men.

Despite years of progress in preventing and treating H.I.V. in the middle class, the number of new infections nationwide remains stubbornly stuck at 50,000 a year — more and more of them in these men, who make up less than 1 percent of the population.

Giselle, a homeless 23-year-old transgender woman with cafe-au-lait skin, could be called the new face of the epidemic.

“I tested positive about a year ago,” said Giselle, who was born male but now has a girlish hair spout, wears a T-shirt tight across a feminine chest and identifies herself as a woman. “I don’t know how, exactly. I was homeless. I was escorting. I’ve been raped.”

“Yes, I use condoms,” she added. “But I’m not going to lie. I slip sometimes. Trust me — everyone here who says, ‘I always use condoms’? They don’t always.”

Besides transgender people like Giselle, the affected group includes men who are openly gay, secretly gay or bisexual, and those who consider themselves heterosexual but have had sex with men, willingly or unwillingly, in shelters or prison or for money. (Most of those interviewed for this article spoke on the condition that only their first names be used.)

Nationally, 25 percent of new infections are in black and Hispanic men, and in New York City it is 45 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the city’s health department.


Nationally, when only men under 25 infected through gay sex are counted, 80 percent are black or Hispanic — even though they engage in less high-risk behavior than their white peers.

The prospects for change look grim. Critics say little is being done to save this group, and none of it with any great urgency.

“There wasn’t even an ad campaign aimed at young black men until last year — what’s that about?” said Krishna Stone, a spokeswoman for GMHC, which was founded in the 1980s as the Gay Men’s Health Crisis.

Phill Wilson, president of the Black AIDS Institute in Los Angeles, said there were “no models out there right now for reaching these men.”

Federal and state health officials agreed that it had taken years to shift prevention messages away from targets chosen 30 years ago: men who frequent gay bars, many of whom are white and middle-class, and heterosexual teenagers, who are at relatively low risk. Funding for health agencies has been flat, and there has been little political pressure to focus on young gay blacks and Hispanics.

Reaching those men “is the Holy Grail, and we’re working on it,” said Dr. Jonathan Mermin, director of H.I.V. prevention at the C.D.C. His agency created its Testing Makes Us Stronger campaign — the one Ms. Stone referred to — and has granted millions of dollars to local health departments and community groups to pay for testing.

But he could not name a city or state with proven success in lowering infection rates in young gay minority men.

“With more resources, we could make bigger strides,” he said.

Reaching Out

Gay black youths are hard to reach, experts say. Few are out to their families. Many live in places where gays are stigmatized and cannot afford to move. Few attend schools with gay pride clubs or gay guidance counselors.

“When we talked about H.I.V. in sex ed, the class started freaking out,” said Alex, 20, who was born in St. Croix but raised in New York. “One guy said, ‘We ain’t no faggots; why do we have to learn this stuff?’ So the teacher stopped and moved on to another topic.”

When those who are poor and homeless go to traditional gay hangouts, they become prey.

Kwame, a 20-year-old from Philadelphia, said that on his first day wandering around New York last year, he was propositioned by an older homeless man and by an older transgender person. The homeless man later admitted that he was infected, and added: “If you sit here long enough, you’re going to get some propositions — and that’s where you’re going to sleep tonight. It happened to me, and it’s going to happen to you.”

Kwame said he had sex that night — with a man he met at a gay services center, where he had gone in search of emergency housing. “I wore a condom,” he said. “I did it sort of out of guilt, or pity. It’s how I was raised. I didn’t want him to think I thought less of him. Also, I needed someplace to stay.”

According to a major C.D.C.-led study, a male-male sex act for a young black American is eight times as likely to end in H.I.V. infection as it is for his white peers.

That is true even though, on average, black youths in the study took fewer risks than their white peers: they had fewer partners, engaged in fewer acts of sex while drunk or high, and used condoms more often.

They had other risk factors. Lacking health insurance, they were less likely to have seen doctors regularly and more likely to have syphilis, which creates a path for H.I.V.

But the crucial factor was that more of their partners were older black men, who are much more likely to have untreated H.I.V. than older white men.

Among the poor, untreated or inadequately treated H.I.V. is the norm, not the exception, said Perry N. Halkitis, a professor of psychology and public health at New York University. According to the C.D.C., 79 percent of H.I.V.-infected black men who have sex with men and 74 percent of Hispanics are not “virally suppressed,” meaning they can transmit the infection, either because they are not yet on antiretroviral drugs or are not taking them daily.


Giselle admitted to sometimes skipping days. “The medicine gets you sick,” she said. “It messes up your mental state. Or it can be freezing and I’m sweating.”

Missed doses let the virus rebound, sometimes in drug-resistant strains, experts said.

Other risk factors include depression and fatalism. In a 2012 project by the National Youth Pride Services, an advocacy organization for gay black youths, more than half of the young gay black people questioned said they feared their friends or families would disown them if they came out as gay, and about 4 in 10 said they had contemplated suicide over being gay.

“The image of a black gay man almost doesn’t exist,” said Shariff Gibbons, 25, who works with other young men at GMHC. “In the black community, the image that ‘gay men are sissies’ is amped up a billion times. And we all have an aunt who goes to church and says, ‘Being gay is wrong.’ That makes young men hide.”

Fighting Isolation

Roderick, 22, said his aunt, who took him in after his parents were arrested on drug charges, became furious after he told her at age 15 that he was gay. Later he attended a small New Jersey university and studied to be a veterinarian. But when his aunt learned that he was dating a white man, she demanded that he return home and go to a local community college.

She and his cousins called him an “Oreo” and even viler names, he said. “It got to where I felt I was going to snap, and kill myself or kill them. I didn’t want to do either, so one night I took my cousin’s bike and I left, and took a train to New York. I’m just basically dead to my family now.”

In New York, he found housing through the Ali Forney Center, which is named after a young gay rights advocate murdered in 1997 and which shelters gay minority youths, who are often abused in regular shelters. Roderick briefly supported himself by having sex for money at parties organized through Craigslist. But he gave that up, he said, has one partner and is applying for veterinary scholarships.

Several young men described having felt isolated and scared as teenagers, and so depressed that they hardly cared if they lived or died, which left them indifferent about using condoms, especially when they were offered money not to. And many turned to empathetic older men who had gone through the same crises in their youth. Alex said his mother threatened to throw him out when she caught him with another boy when he was a teenager — but she needed the disability checks he receives because of nerve damage done at birth.

“I have three strikes against me: I’m black, I’m gay, and I’m in a wheelchair,” he said. “All I wanted was love and comfort and being with someone in the world.”

Sex with strangers was as close as he could get. His first time was in a stairwell of his housing project with a man he met on a black gay chat site.

“It was a hit and a bounce and leave,” he said. “Unprotected oral and anal.” When he was older, he sold himself on the Chelsea Piers.

Two scary events — getting syphilis and being raped by an older man he thought loved him — brought him to GMHC, which offers separate support groups for black and Hispanic men, teenagers and transsexuals. They offer advice, H.I.V. tests and help on being openly gay.

For example, several men said they joined after being handed GMHC “I Love My Boo” fliers, which show young black male lovers holding hands and kissing in Central Park.

An Inadequate Response

But scattered local programs like these, and those offering housing, legal and medical help and other services, are not turning the tide of infections because the national response is fragmented and hesitant.

Few black political or religious leaders talk regularly about the problem — though there are exceptions, including Representative Barbara Lee, a Democrat from Oakland, Calif., and the Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts III of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem. Ms. Lee and several other congresswomen publicly take annual H.I.V. tests. Few men in the Congressional Black Caucus agree to join them, one of her aides said.

Dr. Butts has endorsed home H.I.V. tests from the pulpit and exhorted his congregants to accept gay relatives, but many black clergy members are far less accepting; some have fought same-sex marriage ballot measures.

Many programs have been proposed and tested, including financial incentives: paying parents who accept their gay sons to meet with parents who reject theirs; paying men who bring in friends for H.I.V. tests; and paying older black men to give cooking lessons and safe-sex advice to younger ones. But none have been widely adopted.

At a recent GMHC forum on why its programs for young black men were being cut, Janet Weinberg, the agency’s acting chief executive, said the epidemic was in some ways still where it was 30 years ago.

“We have the tools to end it,” she said, “except for the government’s indifference.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/05/us...pagewanted=all

what utterly enrages me is when people point to african-american resistance to SSM (which is exaggerated) as if it's some sort of noble stance.

homophobia, and church-sanction stigma and shame, absolutely KILLS people. it kills the most vulnerable among us.

PrEP is a game changer. but you need health insurance to afford it.

fucking hell.
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Old 12-05-2013, 11:44 PM   #553
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Reading that made me think of the black gay men I've known. One is being harassed by a neighbor, but I don't know the race of that neighbor. Being gay is tough, but being gay and black or Hispanic is tougher. Are there any statistics on Asian gays? From what I understand, Asian families tend to be conservative, so I guess they don't have it easy either.
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Old 12-06-2013, 12:00 AM   #554
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Reading that made me think of the black gay men I've known. One is being harassed by a neighbor, but I don't know the race of that neighbor. Being gay is tough, but being gay and black or Hispanic is tougher. Are there any statistics on Asian gays? From what I understand, Asian families tend to be conservative, so I guess they don't have it easy either.

while religiosity is a factor, economics is a bigger one (though the two are often linked).

generally speaking, Asian-Americans are a highly successful group and more likely to have health care and economic resources to keep themselves healthy.
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Old 12-06-2013, 12:20 AM   #555
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Well, that's a good thing. But that doesn't help solve the relationship between an LGBT Asian and his or her family. I've known some who are OK with gay people, but some Asian families I've known are very conservative - and that's because of religion or traditional Asian beliefs, like filial piety.
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