Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Is Sexism and Agism Allstate Insurance's Best Strategy for Winning Customers?

Am I the only one who really, really hates these Allstate insurance commercials where there's some douche bag dressed up in all pink and doing all sorts of property damage and then saying "I'm a teenage girl and if you (bought insurance from the other company then basically, you'd be screwed right now)"? I mean, what makes a teenage girl more likely to be irresponsible than a teenage boy or an adult male. And wearing all pink and driving a pink car--lord knows girls love love love the color pink, amirite?--while doing it has got to be the icing on the cake.

Here are a few different versions of the commercial.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Islamophobia Comes to a Head in New York City

One of my brothers is a Muslim now. He also works part-time as a taxicab driver. That's why reading this story in the news today gave me the chills.

Muslim Cab Driver STABBED in New York City, Michael Enright Arrested on Hate Crime Charge

My mom is a Jehovah's Witness. They aren't exactly known for being folks who are open to the idea that there is more than one right way to do things, especially when it comes to religion. However, my mom always encouraged us to learn about the world around us. She taught us to be voracious readers and she never stopped us from reading about other religions and studying their holy texts. She caught a lot of flack for how she raised us, but we all turned out to be critical thinkers as adults. We didn't become Jehovah's Witnesses, but we all have a great deal of respect for folks of all faiths.

The worst part of this is that it has happened during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. This is a month that Muslims around the world use as a time of reflection and fasting, prayer, sacrifice, and repentance. To have this happen to a Muslim during Ramadan is like having the same thing happen to a Catholic during Lent or to a Protestant on Christmas. Just when you have your thoughts focused on God and you're trying to reaffirm your commitment to worship Him to the best of your ability, someone comes along and stabs you in the neck.

This was an act of religious persecution. It is a hate crime, if ever there was one.

Please keep Ahmed H. Sharif and his family in your prayers and consider using the month of Ramadan as an opportunity to visit a mosque in your area. Every time I have ever entered one, I have been treated warmly, with welcoming arms. If the idea of religious persecution makes you as angry as it makes me, I think we should reach out to our Muslim sisters and brothers and let them know that we are not willing to sit by and watch bigots impugn Islam and victimize them in their own country.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Best Native American/Arizona Joke EVER!

When NASA was preparing for the Apollo Project, they conducted some astronaut training on the Navajo Reservation in northern Arizona. One day a Navajo elder and his son were herding sheep when they encountered the space crew engaged in such training. The old man spoke only Navajo and asked a question which his son translated. “What are these guys in the big suits doing?” A member of the crew replied that they were practicing for their trip to the moon.

The old man got excited and asked if he could send a message to the moon with the astronauts. Recognizing a promotional opportunity for the spin doctors, the NASA folks found a tape recorder. When the old man had finished recording his message, they asked the son to translate it for them, however he refused to do it. So the NASA reps brought the tape into town to get it translated. The other members of the tribe listened to it and then laughed, but also refused to translate the elder’s message to the moon. Finally the NASA crew called in an official government translator. He then translated the elder’s message as saying;

“Watch out for these assholes… they have come to steal your land”

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Beautiful Obama Family

Today, I saw a picture of President Obama leaving an independent bookstore with his two daughters as they are vacationing out in Martha's Vineyard. As a person in a family that has been inter-racial for several generations, I just never get enough of seeing them. It's hard enough finding positive portrayals of black families in the media. Trying to show your child other families like yours when you have an inter-racial/inter-ethnic family is like searching for the dodo bird.

Obama dresses just like my dad, nothing flashy, no labels on his clothes and always carrying or wearing a pair of sunglasses that are just cool enough for me to suspect that someone else picked them out for him. :) Sasha & Malia never have that overly-dressed up look that I hate to see on children. I'm talking about the kind of doll-like clothes that kids are afraid to really get down and play in because their parents might scream about them messing up their pretty outfits. They look as if they are ready to join a picnic or a game of hopscotch or any other activity that a kid should be free to kick back and enjoy while on vacation. They are adorable, well-mannered, well-adjusted, and unpretentious. They're exactly the kind of family that I would have chosen for what the first black/multi-racial family in the White House would be like.

People may certainly find several things to criticize about Obama's presidency, but no one can deny the fact that this family is doing an excellent job at creating a loving and supportive environment for their children. All little kids deserve to be adored by their parents in the same way that Sasha and Malia obviously are.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

I found this picture on the Huffington Post slide show. I think I really liked it, because of the twenty different things that one can be in order to qualify for entrance into Satan's eternal disco party, I've actually done or been fourteen of these at some time in my life.

How many reasons does this guy think that God has to send you to hell? Come on! 'Fess up, folks!

WorldNetDaily Gets Down to Serious Business

The German thinks I have a twisted sense of humor, because when I'm having a bad day I like to cheer myself up by spending hours and hours looking at websites from what he and I refer to as the "other internetz", "Internet /b/", or the "dark side". If I had to analyze it, I guess teabagger conspiracies about Obama's supposed plan to enslave whites or evangelical preachers trying to convince us that Obama is the Anti-Christ are so absurd that it's virtually impossible for me not to laugh, even on days where it's hard for me to get my mind off of my back pain or my stomach problems.

One of my favorite sources of lulz is the right-wing website WorldNutDaily WorldNetDaily. Yesterday, they posted an article about how their CEO has disinvited Ann Coulter from speaking at his "Taking America Back" national conference. He says it was a gut-wrenching decision, but one that he was forced to make after Coulter decided to speak in front of a group of gay Republicans at an event called "HomoCon". Coulter explained that she was simply doing it for the money, but (surprisingly) even that wasn't a good enough excuse for Farah who has decided to allow Coulter to remain a regular columnist on his site, nevertheless. The article features a quote where he explains his decision:
"There's a different standard for columnists and speakers at our conference," Farah explained. "We boast the broadest ideological forum of commentators in any news or opinion publication or website anywhere on the planet – and we will continue to do that. We think people should hear all points of view discussed openly and honestly. However, this conference is a serious event designed to provide some real leadership for those who are serious about changing the direction of this country. There is simply no room there for compromisers or for people who accept money from those determined to destroy the moral fabric required for self-governance and liberty."
What makes this whole story outrageously funny is the lines that directly followed this quote.
The conference will feature Rep. Michele Bachmann, Ambassador Alan Keyes, Colorado gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo, former Sen. and retired Admiral Jeremiah Denton, WND's Jerome Corsi, Aaron Klein, David Kupelian, comedienne Victoria Jackson, talk-show host Rusty Humphries, homeschool champion Michael Farris and many others in a lively, interactive forum that will include debates on some of the hottest issues of the day.
Oh yeah, any event featuring Bachmann, Keyes and comedienne Victoria Jackson is definitely srz bznz! God bless the series of tubes. Without them, I might not ever find out just how stupid these folks really are.

Friday, August 13, 2010

A Message for White Xenophobes

Dear White Xenophobes,

You clearly don't understand the human psyche. What happens when you threaten adults and tell them that they had better not do something? Why, even if they had no prior plans to do it, the idea of trying it suddenly becomes more intriguing to them, of course! By making migration across this imaginary border into something forbidden, you make it a challenge that some folks will become determined to conquer.

You like facts? Well, here's one: The US military is stuck in two god-forsaken wars that leave it too stretched out and distracted to put enough people on the border to actually prevent folks from crossing. Even Arpaio and Brewer's little stunts aren't enough to keep folks from crossing. All they have done is alienate people of color who are citizens, including those who might actually have gone along with a reasonable and comprehensive approach to migration.

My very conservative partner, who is just a swarthy man of German-descent and is often mistaken as a Latino or Arab, can no longer travel/vacation through AZ without worrying about being snatched away from his family. Do you really think he'll ever vote Republican again? You folks really didn't think this one through very well or maybe you just decided to let your prejudices win out over all other considerations. Either way, you played yourself, buddy. The cat's out of the bag and even conservative people of color are dumping your party like a hot rock. Thanks for playing, though!”