Despite admitting to the act, the movie director David O. Russell will not face any charges for sexually violating his niece. According to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office this is because the police didn’t witness the act and she was asking for it by discussing the hormones that she is taking to increase her breast size.
Apparently the police have to witness a crime for it to have happened and it’s possible to ask to be sexually assaulted. Welcome to America.
The Pentagon is censoring LGBT news.
Palestine UN Bid: 138 yes, 9 no, 41 abstentions.
Crowdsourcing Project of the Day
In the wake of the latest violent conflict in the Gaza Strip, The Guardian put together a handy,crowdsourced map powered by Google that highlights specific areas that have been targeted by missiles in the region with a red dot. When clicked, the dot opens up a dialogue box detailing the location of the strike, as well as other information related to casualties and property damages as they become available.
FLASH: Israel and Gaza militants have agreed to the Egyptian-brokered ceasefire, Hamas official Ayman Taha says. The Gaza truce will be declared at 1900 GMT and go into effect at 2200 GMT, the official said.
Briefing: DRC’s M23 rebellion under pressure | IRIN
GOMA, 16 November 2012 (IRIN) - Heavy fighting broke out on 15 November in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo between M23 rebels and government forces (FARDC), breaking a virtual truce that had lasted on the frontlines between these forces for nearly three months.
M23 (The Mouvement Du 23 Mars) began in April 2012 as an army mutiny by several hundred soldiers who accused the government of breaching the terms of a March 2009 peace deal under which the rebel group they then belonged to, the National Congress for the Defence of the People (CNDP) morphed into a political party while CNDP fighters joined the army.
Photo: OxFam International/Flickr
GAZA: Three people have been killed as rockets fired from Gaza struck southern Israel, amid escalating violence.
They died when a four-storey building in the town of Kiryat Malachi was hit.
It marks the first Israeli fatalities since Israel killed Hamas’ military chief in Gaza on Wednesday. [via BBC]
[Explosion and smoke rise following an Israeli air strike in the northern Gaza Strip, seen from the Israel Gaza Border, southern Israel, Thursday, 15 November, 2012. Photograph: Ariel Schalit/AP via the Guardian]
On Tammy Baldwin And ENDA
There’s a ton of misinformation going around Tumblr on this, so I’m going to post some actual facts on the situation before I go to bed.
Tammy Baldwin was one of 184 cosponsors of H.R. 2015, the trans-inclusive version of ENDA which was put before Congress in 2007. Unfortunately, Barney Frank — the bill’s originating sponsor — unilaterally withdrew H.R. 2015 from consideration and replaced it with H.R. 3685, a “gays only” version of ENDA. Frank argued that cutting trans rights out of ENDA was politically necessary because trans rights were an extremist position which would endanger moderate Democrats in swing states, whereas gay rights were “politically realistic”.
Tammy Baldwin not only refused to cosponsor H.R. 3685, but threw Frank’s betrayal of trans people in his face by introducing an amendment which would have reintroduced trans rights to ENDA while it was on the House floor, effectively reversing Frank’s replacement of H.R. 2015 with H.R. 3685. Barney Frank killed Baldwin’s amendment by cashing in favors with Democratic Party leaders, who told Baldwin that they would only let her introduce the floor amendment if she agreed to withdraw it before an actual vote was called. This way she would get ten minutes of floor debate time to make a public case for trans rights, but they would not under any circumstances permit a vote on the amendment.
It is neither accurate nor fair to call Tammy Baldwin a transphobe for not being powerful enough to single-handedly secure trans inclusion in ENDA against the entire fucking establishment of the Democratic Party. She stuck her neck way, way out to go to bat for trans people over ENDA, and that was an extremely courageous thing to do considering that she was a relative nobody in Congress explicitly going toe-to-toe with one of the most powerful men in Washington.
This chick fought tooth and nail for us and fuckers like Barney Frank kicked her legs out from under her.
So I for one am glad that Tammy Baldwin won.
As a trans woman.
Remember before what I said about politics and anyone who has even the slightest understanding of how they work knowing that Tammy isn’t a transphobe?
This is what I was talking about. I’m glad other people get it and we’re not all a bunch of bumbling idiots.
Just a reminder, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, and Washington are all voting on same-sex marriage things today.
Track those and other ballot measures here!
N.J. nuclear plant on alert as state struggles to cope with Sandy’s surge
America’s oldest nuclear power plant is on alert after waters from a colossal storm reached high levels.
Oyster Creek in Lacey Township, New Jersey, was already offline for regular maintenance before Sandy, a superstorm downgraded Monday night from a hurricane, slammed the East Coast.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says an “unusual event” was declared around 7 p.m. when water reached a high level. The situation was upgraded less than two hours later to an “alert,” the second-lowest in a four-tiered warning system. (REUTERS/Gary Hershorn)
In an unprecedented step for executive power, President Obama signed an Executive Order on July 6th that allows the executive branch to seize control of all communications infrastructure in the United States, public and private:
“Without even the faintest toot of a fanfare, President Barack Obama has issued an Executive Order that outlines an extreme level of communications preparedness in case of crisis or emergency, including the ability to take over any communication network, including the internet.
The Order, ‘Assignment of National Security and Emergency Preparedness Communications Functions,’ takes many of the US government’s existing emergency communications preparations, and codifies the exact responsibilities of the various US secretaries/departments and intelligence agencies
. For the most part, the Order is very sensible; basically, no matter what — come hurricanes, earthquakes, or nuclear war — the US government ‘must have the ability to communicate at all times and under all circumstances to carry out its most critical and time sensitive missions.’”
One can expect governments to plan for all kinds of emergencies– i.e. meteor strikes, wars, uprisings, (etc.). Several continuity plans are already in place. But if this latest executive order sounds unbelievable, then it probably should, because with the stroke of a pen, President Obama has entered America into a new paradigm.
In a sense, however, this sweeping new order is only somewhat unprecedented, at least in the Bush-Obama era of executive power. Potential seizure of communications infrastructure simply folds into a laundry list of resources that Obama declared authority to seize and manage in another recent Executive Order:
“On March 16th, President Obama signed a new Executive Order which expands upon a prior order issued in 1950 for Disaster Preparedness, and gives the office of the President complete control over all the resources in the United States in times of war or emergency.
The National Defense Resources Preparedness order gives the Executive Branch the power to control and allocate energy, production, transportation, food, and even water resources by decree under the auspices of national defense and national security. The order is not limited to wartime implementation, as one of the order’s functions includes the command and control of resources in peacetime determinations.”
It is troubling how little coverage and scrutiny this event is getting in the mainstream media. Agree with this new policy or not, why aren’t Americans even discussing it?
Colorado Shooting Good News of the Day: Three out of the five hospitals currently treating victims of the Colorado theater shooting have decided to limit or completely waive the medical bills of the uninsured, and waive the co-pays for those with medical insurance.
There are several efforts, including a donation from Warner Bros., to help the victims financially, but the sheer volume of injured persons still means a lot of bills and a lot of big bucks.
Such a generous move from the hospitals should considerably aid these people in getting back on their feet, and moving forward.
TW: violent heterosexism
Today my hometown was struck by a disgusting hardship.
A woman this afternoon was found by a neighbor, bleeding and naked. She was attacked in her home because she was gay. Two or more men broke into her home through the basement and proceeded to tag her basement. They found the homeowner, who is an open lesbian, and stabbed, assaulted, and carved “dyke” into her chest. They attempted to burn her house to the ground, but the gas only sparked. Somehow, this woman (who remains anonymous until she decides to come out on her own time) was able to escape. She was found naked, bound with zip ties, and bloody. She is still alive and in the hospital. A candle light vigil was held in her name tonight, where more than 500 people from Lincoln and surrounding cities and states joined to talk about the hate and to pay homage to the victim.
A recovery fund has been set up to help her cover medical bills and anything she may need. That link can be found here, along with a link from the original news story.
Notes: Article taken directly from the Lincoln Journal Star website
Pictures are courtesy of Lincoln Journal Star and Steve Andel Photography. I do not own any rights to anything posted.
The truth is made worse by the reality that no one—really no one—anywhere on the political spectrum has the courage to speak out about the madness of unleashed guns and what they do to American life. That includes the President, whose consoling message managed to avoid the issue of why these killings take place. Of course, we don’t know, and perhaps never will, what exactly “made him” do what he did; but we know how he did it. Those who fight for the right of every madman and every criminal to have as many people-killing weapons as they want share moral responsibility for what happened last night—as they will when it happens again. And it will happen again.
Adam Gopnik on the Aurora movie mheater shooting and American gun culture: http://nyr.kr/MwUIER
Gunman opens fire at Colorado movie theater, killing at least 12
Update (8:31 a.m. EDT): Colorado police spokesman revises death toll and says at least 12 dead in movie theater attack, AP reports.
NBC News: Fourteen people were killed and at least 50 others wounded early Friday when a gunman opened fire at a midnight screening of the summer blockbuster ”The Dark Knight Rises” near Denver, authorities and witnesses said.
Aurora Police Chief Dan Oates told reporters that 10 people died at the scene and four others died after being taken to local hospitals. A three-month-old and a six-year-old girl were among those treated, according to reports.
More updates on BreakingNews.com.
Photo: Police responded to a shooting at the Century 16 movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, early this morning. (Karl Gehring / The Denver Post via nbcnews.com)
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