“It’s very painful when you are attached to somebody like a brother or family, and you see that person on his last days,” McCollum said. “A lot of them don’t really want to die. … And it hurt me the most to see the state take somebody’s life, when they are committing murder their own self. But they don’t see it that way.”

~ Henry McCollum, released from NC prison after decades on death row

The Highwaymen, Florida’s Roadside Artists


If you traveled by way of Florida’s Route 1 in the ’60s and ’70s, you might have encountered young African-American landscape artists selling oil paintings of an idealized, candy-colored, Kennedy-era Florida….


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“Can we all get along?… Can we get along? Can we stop making it horrible for the older people and the kids?”

~Rodney Glen King (4/2/1965 – 6/17/2012

Why did it take so long?

States are finally using DNA tests to establish innocence in disputed convictions… about 20 years after it became possible. Ironically Texas, with the highest execution rate in the country (which means in developed countries) is especially proud of their record in that regard. It would seem that the obvious corollary has escaped them, however.


The Marriage Vow — An Un-Christian, Bigoted Screed

A bunch of wingnuts in Iowa have published a document that they call “THE MARRIAGE VOW A Declaration of Dependence upon MARRIAGE and FAMiLY.”  What garbage!  The portions of the agenda that are  desirable are ruined by the rest of the document’s contents, and by the blatant attempt to stuff it down everyone’s throat.  It isn’t even a vow to protect marriage, although they have tried to weasel the wording so that they can claim that it is.  It is nothing less than a platform that they want every candidate for public office to swear to push forward.  It is racist, bigoted, and about as un-Christian as anything I’ve read since Mein Kampf — a blatant attempt to foist the agenda of a few onto the many.

I was going to publish it in its entirety, but could only find it in .pdf.  I would have had to convert and then edit the disgusting trash, and I didn’t want to subject myself to reading it again.

Here’s a link to an article in the Portland Examiner. You can take it from there.  If you want to comment here, feel free.  However, I’m not going to read the comments because it might cause me to change my mind about the sanity — and desirability — of some of my friends.

Among the 14 pledges in The Marriage Vow are faithfulness to one’s spouse, respect for the marital bonds of others and “opposition to any redefinition of the Institution of Marriage — faithful monogamy between one man and one woman — through statutory-, bureaucratic-, or court-imposed recognition of intimate unions which are bigamous, polygamous, polyandrous, same-sex, etc.” Also included are the rejection of “Sharia Islam and all other anti-woman, anti-human rights forms of totalitarian control” and a commitment to reducing the size of government and lowering the public debt.

But wait! There’s more! You ain’t seen nuttin’ yet (pun intended).


Race and ethnicity – a set on Flickr

I was astounded by Bill Rankin’s map of Chicago’s racial and ethnic divides and wanted to see what other cities looked like mapped the same way. To match his map, Red is White, Blue is Black, Green is Asian, Orange is Hispanic, Gray is Other, and each dot is 25 people. Data from Census 2000.

via Race and ethnicity – a set on Flickr – Click here to check out your city.

Trouble in the Teapot

Tea Party federation expels Tea Party Express – Politics – msnbc.com

Oh! Whatever will they do without their lunatic fringe?

WASHINGTON — The Tea Party political movement saw a major split over the weekend, with the National Tea Party Federation expelling a member group after its spokesman wrote an online post satirizing a fictional letter from what he called “Colored People” to President Abraham Lincoln.

On its website, the federation stated it had given the Tea Party Express, through direct contact with one of its leaders, a deadline to rebuke and remove spokesman Mark Williams.

“That leader’s response was clear: they have no intention of taking the action we required for their group to continue as a member of the National Tea Party Federation,” the federation stated.

Therefore, effective immediately the National Tea Party Federation is expelling Tea Party Express from the ranks of our membership.”

Federation spokesman David Webb, interviewed Sunday on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” called the blog post “clearly offensive.”