Category Archives: Culture

As goes California…?

So how does go California, anyway? A stream of articles and editorials over the last year has sketched a sad picture of the once-Golden State’s economic outlook. Much has been said of the budget crunch, political gridlock and the stranglehold of public-sector labor unions on the body politic.

Victor Davis Hanson explores the changed reality of life in central California which forms one part of this story. It’s a different place than when the writer grew up there, now resembling parts of the third world in his estimation. Two Californias, published in National Review, has been making the rounds on the web and deserves reading.

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Filed under Culture, Economy, Immigration

I know you are but what am I?

Are Liberals Smarter Than Conservatives? It’s a good question – if in large part because the former seems always to suggest exactly that. Jason Richwine tackles the issue and offers sound and honest insight.

While it may raise some interesting points of consideration, ultimately such a question does not meaningfully advance serious public policy discourse. This is the conclusion Richwine reaches, and it seems a reasonable one.

I suggest that any conservative who has ever been confronted by liberal intellectual arrogance read this article, and read it well.

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Filed under Culture, Philosophy and Ethics, The Left

Background emerging on Kevin Jennings

More background info is emerging on Kevin Jennings, President Obama‘s “safe schools” point person at the Department of Education. Excellent reporting here by Lori Roman of Regular Folks United.

In the last few days, Jennings has garnered unflattering attention for his failure to report a case of statutory rape when he was a school teacher.

Now it is revealed that among other things, Jennings has said he was inspired by NAMBLA enthusiast Harry Hay. (That would be the North American Man Boy Love Association). The deceased Hay was a communist and one of the nation’s foremost political advocates of pedophilia.

Safe schools, indeed.

Again, I can’t say that I’m surprised by any of this. I would be surprised if a GLSEN founder like Jennings didn’t have the type of views, background and associations outlined by Roman.

The big question is how much attention this issue is going to receive in the coming days. Obviously, legacy media outlets will do their best to ignore it. Will new media forces devote sufficient energy to bring it to the fore? And if they do, will Jennings be forced to fall on his sword for the president?

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Filed under Barack Obama, Culture, Education

Look how far we’ve come!

The National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance, a self described “civil-rights” group, offers a “Diversity ToolKit” on their website.

You can’t make this stuff up.

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Filed under Culture

Kindergarten parents complain that rules apply to them

A group of public school kindergartners showed up at the White House more than an hour late yesterday for a tour, and were disturbed and in disbelief that the White House would not rearrange its schedule to accommodate their own tardiness.

This according to NBC News (via Drudge Report)- who to their discredit played up the angle of the White House snubbing little kids, as opposed to an elementary school snubbing the White House and the children the school allegedly serves.

Conway Elementary School is located in Fredericksburg, Virginia and is part of the Stafford County Public School District. According to Google Directions, the school is located 50.1 miles away from the White House, for a driving time of 59 minutes or 1 hours 20 minutes in traffic.

For an appointment to the White House, you do not arrive late. Period. The school officials and charter bus company they hired should have allowed for traffic, weather and other contingencies with enough time to still be early. There is simply no excuse for tardiness, and it is a shame that the kids missed out on a special visit to the White House because of poor planning by adults.

The worst thing about it is the adults’ reaction when they realized that they had missed their appointment.

Parents, like field trip chaperon Paty Stine: downplayed and even misrepresented their own tardiness; expressed anger and disappointment at the White House for sticking to the schedule; made excuses about why they were late; focused attention on disappointed children rather than their own actions that caused the disappointment; said that they were entitled to an exception from the rules; claimed victim status; mocked the President of the United States; and even had the presence of mind to indulge in a little rhetorical class-warfare.

The sad thing is that some of these kindergartners may grow up to be just like Paty Stine, if she is the type of parent and chaperon to be found at Conway Elementary School. The school’s website offers added context to the words and behaviors of the adults. The page of “Effective Schoolwide [sic] Discipline” makes not a single mention of punctuality or ramifications of tardiness. Instead, young Conway Cougars are encouraged to “respect others,” have a “positive attitude” and be “accepting of differences.”

The White House issued a gracious, yet carefully worded statement that did not give in to the elementary school-style bullying directed their way. “The President and First Lady are dedicated to opening the doors of the White House to the public, and it is unfortunate to see young people miss a tour. The visitor’s office is already working to reschedule the group.” I don’t say this often, but “Good Job, Obama White House.”

Post Script: Being punctual is important, and I have had my own struggles with it. While I have made monumental improvements and am now generally a punctual person, I still have a little ways to go to always be punctual – even for the little things in life’s schedule. A couple months ago I read an article by Dustin Wax which helped me better understand the significance of punctuality. I recommend it not only to the folks at Conway Elementary School (actually, I recommend they read it about 10 times each and nail it to the doors of their school), I encourage you, too, to consider reading it.

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Filed under Culture, Education, Media Bias

At the end of the day….

Perez Hilton is still ugly, and Miss California is still Miss California.

Miss California and Miss USA Runner-UP Carrie Prejean

Miss California and Miss USA Runner-UP Carrie Prejean

That is to say, Hilton is a snarky left wing homosexual blogger (why is he even judging this contest?), and Miss California is a stunning young woman who happens to hold traditional values.

Not too hard to pick sides on this one.  (not that it’s about sides, but, you know).

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Filed under Culture, Entertainment

California threatens to ban “language discrimination”

This one is so out there I barely know where to start (that and I’m just tired).

The state senate in California has approved a bill that would prevent businesses from “discriminating” on the basis of language. From the LA Times:

“…the state Senate acted today to prohibit businesses in California from discriminating against customers, including refusing them service, based on the language they use.”

So a guy speaking Lithuanian tries to order at my restaurant, and I can’t serve him because I can’t understand him – would I be a criminal under the new law? Don’t know if they’ve fully worked that out yet…

This reminds me of a story I once heard about regulations on doctors offices. I don’t know the details or in which state this is the case, but it goes something like the following. A patient visits a doctor for a consultation, and whatever the diagnosis is, apparently the patient needs to come back for a series of visits, including surgery or some other procedure. The patient doesn’t speak English, although she does sign and has an interpreter.

According to this story – and I’m inclined to believe it – the doctor is responsible for paying for the interpreter. And he can’t make it up by charging the patient any more than he would anyone else for the same procedure. Equal access, you know.

Presumably you could see similar situations and worse across California should this new bill become law.

This legislation is a threat to the human and civil rights of all Californians. It violates their right to engage in the mutual, voluntary, peaceful exchange of goods and services between free individuals. And it risks enormous practical damage to the livelihoods of many if this becomes the reality.

Finally, this bill divides our nation by working against assimilation and a common language.  It is a direct assault on the notion “Out of Many, One.”

Let me be clear (this should go without saying, but, things that go without saying should often be said anyway): I am a staunch proponent of the freedom in this country that allows people to speak any language they want. I always seek civility among the inhabitants of this great nation, whether they be citizens or residents, whether they speak the English language or another tongue. And learning and speaking a foreign language is a good thing to do; my own modest knowledge of the Spanish language has enriched my life and I look forward to improving and possibly studying another language at some point.

However, the proposed law has nothing to do with any of that. Instead, it is very simply a forceful use of government to take away people’s freedoms, threaten their commerce, and divide us as a people.

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Filed under Culture, General & Miscellaneous, Immigration