Separation of church and state
The Supreme Court should rule against Hobby Lobby and other business owners who claim religious freedom from providing birth control for their female employees in their health care packages.
This is just another form of discrimination. If the Supreme Court allows business owners to choose what laws they don’t agree with, what comes next?
If you belong to a church that believes everyone should smoke pot for their health, should you have the right to smoke pot in your public business? What if your religion teaches men are superior to women and therefor you will pay all your male employees more money than your female employees? If your religion requires you to get on your knees and pray every day at noon, does everyone in the company have to do that, also?
Laws are made to protect the public and business owners are required to follow the laws. It’s one of the costs of doing business in a democratic society.
By: Wayne henrich
Find a middle ground
We have an incredible opportunity right now to make our immigration system better. Let’s not let it go to waste. If Congress will just stop bickering and fighting, there’s no doubt we can find a solution for everyone’s concerns.
We could allocate funds toward increasing border security in order to limit the number of immigrants who are coming over illegally. We can expand the number of visas available each year, to accommodate the large number of highly skilled workers who want to stay here and work legally.
For those illegal immigrants who are already living here, we can find a middle-ground solution that allows them to work here legally, but also forces them to start at the back of the line and pay taxes just like everybody else. Arguing has gotten us nowhere over the past 15 years. Continue reading
Welcome to the “Gunshine State,” where our National Rifle Association-approved laws empower us to shoot you dead for texting, playing loud music, wearing a hoodie or, perhaps, any other innocent daily activity that may annoy us. Seems all we have to do is claim that we felt threatened, and we can shoot just about anybody we want. We can even provoke the argument and shoot you dead if you complain or fight back. Then it’s our word against yours. Of course, you’re dead and can’t tell your side of the story, but we Floridians trust our gun-addled legal system to protect our right to shoot first and explain later. Continue reading
Hijacking the public agenda
Republican/tea party members know they can’t win a national election, so they are going to focus on city, country and state elections.
Let’s start close to home. Ormond Beach is fighting over fluoride in the drinking water, something I thought was settled years ago. Volusia County schools fought about the history books used in the public schools. The state Republicans have keep about 300,000 people from getting Medicaid even if the U.S. government pays 100 percent of the cost the first three years and 90 percent thereafter. The Republicans have cut taxes on businesses every year but can’t find the money for health care.
South Dakota is trying to shut down the one and only abortion clinic, even as abortion is legal in the United States. Kansas is trying to pass a law a law (and you’re not going to believe this one) that any person, public or private, can refuse service to anyone they believe does not follow their religious beliefs.
South Carolina may pass a law that public schools can’t teach evolution unless they also teach “intelligent design.” Maybe we should call evolution intelligent design and stop all this nonsense.
What I’m trying to say is a very small group of very vocal people can hijack a city, county and state, because most people have a life to live and don’t have time to fight these same fights year after year. Fluoride helps your teeth, evolution is a fact and all people are equal — white, black, straight, gay, you name it. The Republican/tea party and religious groups are going to have to live with it.
By: Leon M. Blythe
It seems to make some people sick to see and hear from George Zimmerman after the killing of Trayvon Martin.
Watch the CNN interview.
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Keystone XL demonstration, White House,8-23-2011 Photo Credit: Josh Lopez (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Keystone XL report by the State Department was a sham, written by pipeline advocates. The pipeline will promote development of the Canadian tar sand. If the pipeline really had no effect on the economics of the tar sands development, why is Canada lobbying so hard to build it?
The Keystone XL pipeline is not in our national interests, it is in Canada’s. It will pollute our waters, poison our air, add to global warming, and drive up the price of our gasoline by using our refinery capacity to produce fuel to be sold overseas.
It must not be built.
By: David Leithauser