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So why all the negatives for @EJ: when she tells us about her positive experience with "Obamacare"? The fact that it isn't going to turn out to be the end of the world, /disaster that will end our nation / destroyer of the "best health care system in the history of the world", / etc scare some of you so much that you have to immediately react like people facing a demon and make the "sign of the cross" to protect yourselves?

posted @ Thursday, October 31, 2013 - 08:40

@fixit: Please explain what it is about the US health care system that leads you to believe ours is the "best health care system in the history of the world".

posted @ Monday, October 28, 2013 - 15:37

[quote][b]McCarthy[/b] - I doubt he would write anything about the Muslim's attitude towards homosexuality. Having spent some time in the middle east, I learned the folks there don't have too much tolerance for homosexuality.[/quote]

[quote][b]Polly1955[/b] - Pitts, naturally puts his focus on Christians. Does he know that Muslims despise gay people. Unlike "Christians" they will stone them or behead them on sight.[/quote]

[quote][b]maxcat07[/b] - Christians used to stone them, but now they have become more "civilized" and just incite others to burn down abortion clinics and shoot abortion doctors. Oh, and occasionally beat up gays in the street. We've come a long way, baby.[/quote]

The Christian Right (including "Diamond" Pat Robertson) in the US also promotes and supports extreme anti-gay attitudes and laws in many African countries. According to Amnesty International , intolerance (from discrimination to murder) of LGBT people is increasing in Africa due, in part, to US Fundamentalist Christians playing on already existing anti-gay attitudes.

What is most disturbing is that these US “Christians” not only push discriminatory attitudes and laws in Africa, they also do not denounce the more extreme reactions (prison sentences / torture / other forms of violence) to homosexuality. In many cases, they only give a wishy-washy response that is in actually a tacit approval of these extreme reactions.

So, @McCarthy: & @Polly1955: , it isn’t just Muslims who have little tolerance for gays. And it isn’t just Muslims who promote violence against, and the death of, gays. It is also some Christians. And while these US Christians can’t really get away with being so vehemently anti-gay here (and still remain main-stream) they have no problem with showing their true colors in far-away countries (where they can deny any culpability). And the Fundamentalist Christians in Africa are just as (or more so according to area) vehemently anti-gay and have no more problem with killing gays than some Muslims.

posted @ Monday, September 9, 2013 - 16:04

[quote][b]crankyyankee[/b] - Is this also being done for the majority of teens that are not offenders but rather are the ones that stayed in school and can't find a job?[/quote]

If you have a problem with programs like this then don't gripe about repeat offenders.

posted @ Friday, September 6, 2013 - 09:07

[quote][b]davidxto[/b] - but the hypocrisy of the liberals comes into full swing when they selectively isolate some groups that don't fit their picture of equal rights and justice for all.[/quote]

Not quite sure I get the point you are trying to make, but is this the same as when conservatives isolate the LGBT community and deny them equality and justice for all?

Hypocrisy (as well as name-calling, insults, etc) is common on both sides of the political aisle here, David. In fact, I would guess that there are very few human beings who can honestly say they have never been hypocritical about at least one issue in their life.

[quote][b]davidxto[/b] - Sure, we have fun sometimes,[/quote]

So, when conservatives resort to insults, etc it is all in fun? But when liberals do so then we are "flim-flam artists, thieves and liars"?

So, why don't we just drop the finger-pointing and be honest here. I'll start:

While I try not to, I have been known to engage in name-calling, insults, etc. And I am quite sure I am hypocritical at times. If, in the course of a discussion, someone sees me engaging in these activities, please feel free to call me out on them.

However, do not pretend that my doing so is somehow inherent to my being a liberal. I am doing so because I am an imperfect human being and that is a condition that both liberals and conservatives share.

posted @ Monday, September 2, 2013 - 13:37

[quote][b]jlscott[/b] - The split second they come out of the gate name-calling, denigrating, demonizing, and insulting the intelligence of those who disagree with them, you realize you are dealing with flim-flam artists, thieves and liars. Anyone who has ever purchased a used car or dealt with a cult knows this.[/quote]

Then there sure are a lot of conservative "flim-flam artists, thieves and liars" on these boards also. I see just as much name-calling, denigrating, demonizing and insulting from your side, scotty. In fact, you do quite a lot of it yourself. Pot / Kettle much?

posted @ Monday, September 2, 2013 - 12:10

Setting aside the legitimacy of any argument against Obama's plan (and I think there are legitimate arguments to be made for & against) I have to wonder what many of you would be saying if Obama were to do anything else.

I think many of you will criticize him no matter what he does. On any issue.

Having said that, I think that some also support Obama no matter what he does. This is just as bad.

We have become a nation divided. Divided by politics, race, class, religion. And our division is encouraged by those who hold the political / economic power in this country. We are encouraged to adopt the views "our" side spouts without any real, in-depth examination of the issue at hand. Why? Because as long as we are fighting among ourselves we are not a threat to the powers that be and they can continue to do as they wish no matter the cost to the rest of us.

posted @ Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 09:24

Oops. Double post.

posted @ Friday, August 30, 2013 - 15:36

@Anonymous Dude: And any one with any decision making power within a business that has a government contract can't vote during the life of the contract. For that matter, any who are bidding on government contracts can't vote either. It would be a conflict of interest.

Jeeze, actually when you consider all the ways that a "conflict of interest" could be construed just about everyone could be expected to give up their right to vote. After all, we all vote for politicians that support things we think will benefit us in some way, whether monetarialy, or life style choices, or whatever.

posted @ Friday, August 30, 2013 - 15:35

[quote][b]fishin4u[/b] - At the last DNC convention in 2012, ANYONE who attended was required to show PHOTO ID.[/quote]

If all the Republicans were doing was pushing for Voter ID laws you might have a point. (Though even that is questionable considering voter fraud is virtually non-existent).

But the Republican assault on voter rights goes way beyond IDs. And most of what they are doing is specifically intended to make it harder for Blacks, Hispanics, young people, and the elderly to vote.

And, if you think it is only a coincidence that all of these groups are more likely to vote Democratic or that Voter suppression is not the Republican goal, you are truly blind.

posted @ Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 01:26

[quote][b]GroversMill[/b] - Any questions?[/quote]

No pictures of White people? Or is only Black people that you judge "by the content of their character"?

posted @ Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 01:00

[quote][b]Pfunk[/b] - A huge problem with many people here is that many of the things they complain about exist among all races and they ignore that fact. The biggest common factor is poverty. When will we stop creating issues over skin color and start addressing the real issue of poverty and the negative effects of poverty on the individual? The only color that really matters in this country is money green.[/quote]

Thank you! Needs to be repeated, many, many times!

posted @ Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 00:55

[quote][b]Ben-Shockley[/b] - Muckle, Desmond Hill and Wilma Scott
...You have betrayed your people.
...You have dishonored your own.
(and on, and on, and, ad nauseam... )[/quote]

So, has every White person who has ever committed a violent crime betrayed and dishonored the White race? Or is your copius contempt only for Black criminals?

Sure, these people are low-life criminals. But so is every White person who has committed these same kinds of crimes.

[quote][b]Ben-Shockley[/b] - ...You have made a fool of OUR leader, who only 1 month ago came to the defense of the young men of the African American community by saying no African American young men are ever guilty of any crime.[/quote]

Really? That's what Obama said? Can you link me to this quote? (I suspect you'll find it in your own mind so don't spend too much time looking elsewhere.)

[quote][b]Ben-Shockley[/b] - And all for the murder of a poor defenseless senior citizen as you broke into HIS house in furtherance of theft. [/quote]

Uh, I think you'll find this "fact" right alongside the Obama quote you are looking for. The criminals in this article were robbing a drug dealer, and it was one of the robbers who was killed.

posted @ Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 00:46

[quote][b]Dev-O[/b] - This Guy Lived Right Beside Me... And He Seemed Like A Really Nice Guy. He Would Talk To Us And Stuff. But The Women Seemed Like A Snob.. Turned Her Head When She Seen You. [/quote]

Many abusive men seem to be nice guys to the outside world. They know how to put on a good front all the while terrorizing their families. And many abused women avoid contact with other people, including outside family members. Why? Can be for many reasons - their self-esteem has been beat so low by their abuser that they feel very uncomfortable around other people; they are afraid to even talk to someone outside of their home because they are afraid they will be accused of something (cheating, telling the family secrets, etc) and then beaten by their abuser; they might be trying to hide her bruises; and many other reasons a non-abused person might not understand.

posted @ Tuesday, August 27, 2013 - 00:25

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - None of this is relevant.[/quote]

The Walmart dividend payout, and financial worth of the Walton heirs, compared to the wages they pay is not relevant? Oh, but I see you did not comment on that portion of my statement.

And i find my statement very relevant in comparison to the attitude you (and many others) have toward welfare recipient, many of who are Walmart employees, compared to the Walmart heirs.

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - What is your definition of 'greed', by the way?[/quote]

First, I want to correct an error in my previous statement. Their are actually 6 Walmart heirs that are included in the total dividends paid out to Walmart heirs. 4 of the heirs hold larger portions of Walmart stocks than the other 2 so they receive a larger portion of the dividend payout. Of the 6 heirs, 4 are in the top 10 richest people in America with total wealth at about $26 Billion each. The other 2 are in the top 100 wealthiest with total wealth at $4.5 Billion and $3.9 Billion. It should also be noted that the 6 Walmart heirs (combined) own more wealth than the bottom 40% of America. Also, as stated previously, Walmart has been increasing the percentage on dividend payouts every year since 1974, with the latest increase of 18% for FY2014. This means for FY 2014 the 6 Walton heirs will divide a total of $3.2 Billion in dividend payouts, up another almost $500 Million from 2013.

So, what is my definition of greed? The definition is exemplified by the Waltons. And it isn’t because of their wealth. It is because, even with their vast wealth, they want more & more & more wealth. When a person already has more money than they could possibly spend in a lifetime and when having more is not going to improve their lives in any significant way, that is greed. In fact, that is the very definition of greed:

Definition of GREED
: a selfish and excessive desire for more of something (as money) than is needed.

When you also consider that much of their unneeded wealth is gained by taking money that could be paid to the employees (who keep your business open and bringing in profits) and expecting those employees to turn to government aid in order to provide the basics of food, shelter, & healthcare for the employee’s families, that is an even greater indicator of greed. You also need to take into consideration that while Walmart’s net profit has increased every year for at least the last 10 those increased profits are not being shared with their hourly employees. Instead, Walmart has now capped raises for those hourly employees even while they are raising dividends to the already ultra-wealthy Waltons.

If you don’t understand the inherent greed in the above situation, Okra, I can only be left to wonder why.

posted @ Monday, August 26, 2013 - 15:07

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - So no more Wal Mart greeters. No more fast food workers, etc.? There are some industries with such a small margin that they can't just arbitrarily bump up their wages to a "living wage" and still make a profit, EVEN IF they are already incredibly efficient. [/quote]

But yet WalMart has had no problem, on their "small margin", increasing their dividend payout every year since 1974. This means the Walton heirs (3 of Sam Walton's kids), in 2012 received over $2.7 Billion from their shares. This was up from the $2.4 Billion they received in 2011.

Poor Waltons. They are worth only a measley $26 Billion each so they really need that money. It is so selfish of the workers (who keep the Walmart profits rolling in) to think the employees should be paid enough to feed their families. What is wrong with them??? I know, it is that gimme gimme attitude. Don't those employees know they should be proud and honored to be helping make sure those pitiful Walton kids are able to keep a roof over their heads?

posted @ Friday, August 23, 2013 - 09:25

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - In other words, this line of "reasoning" is bat droppings crazy.[/quote]

So why is it "bat droppings crazy" to expand the same line of reasoning I see over, and over, and over again on this board (regarding the subset of Black males) to the larger set of violent Males in general? Why? is it that the non-Black males aren't important and the factors that contribute to their violence doesn't need to be dealt with?

posted @ Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 21:35

[quote][b]snarkydude[/b] - It is unfortunate that facts interfere with your vision of political correctness, but blacks, as a percentage of the whole population, are responsible for a greater percentage of violent crime than any other demographic. [/quote]

You missed my point about my “profiling” being limited to the situation/surroundings I am in and that outside of specific situations/surroundings I do not tend to judge a person on the color of their skin, their gender, their clothing, or any other outward factor. (And, as a flawed human being, when I do judge I try to be aware of it and set it aside). Also, if I were trying to be “politically correct” I would have said, “Sure, I’d walk through a crime ridden area!” I am not a person who cares about political correctness.

What I care about is this: There are many people (and many on Athens Talks) who see the Black population, as a whole, primarily through the lens of the crimes only a part of that population commits. Their view of the Black population is many times not based on solely situational factors but many times on a deep seated flawed view that Blacks are somehow inherently bad. This is not the same way they see the Male population, despite the fact that males do, in fact, commit the majority of violent (and other types) of crime. And I am not saying all men should be seen through that lens, simply that the Black population shouldn’t be seen that way either. By using only this one lens, the fact that the rest of the Black population (the larger part) are decent, hardworking, productive people who care about their kids (and who are not violent or criminals) is ignored.

I also care that the Black population, as a whole, is held responsible for the violent and criminals acts of those who are a smaller part of their population. Men, as a whole, are not held responsible for the males who are violent and criminal. Do you think they should be? If not, why should the Black population, as a whole, be? This attitude toward the Black population also ignores all the organizations, programs and people who are speaking up and doing things to try to stop the violence and change the situation. Why does it matter so much what Jesse and Al are/aren’t doing/saying? They really don’t represent the whole Black race, even if they think they do. Why focus on two men and ignore so many others?

posted @ Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 21:18

You're right, that is not my position. But if the problem with men is "testosterone" then why are the majority of men not violent?

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - You are making the argument that men should speak out and discourage their innate violence. And the only way that you can compare that with minorities is to argue that their behavior is natural and not learned. [/quote]

Again, if male violence can simply be explained by saying it is innate, why aren't more men violent? There are obviously other positive factors involved. Which means the comparison with minority “communities” stands.

So, again, why isn't the male "community" doing more to make sure all males are exposed to these positive factors? Why aren’t more leaders in the male “community” speaking out about the way their “community” contributes to males to becoming violent. Etc. etc.

posted @ Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 20:14

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - Perhaps they aren't aware of all of the programs at their disposal?[/quote]

Then they should go to work for Wal-Mart. As a low-wage employer, the company will make sure the employee know all the ins-and-outs of welfare and will even help them apply for every last cent available.

posted @ Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 19:31

[quote][b]eric1984[/b] - Its not the drugs itself,its what I have to do to get them.[/quote]

But you still haven't told us what it is you are expected to do to get the drugs. Is it something you aren't capable of doing? Does it have something to do with changing some behavior or circumstance in your life that you would find difficut to change? As @melmarino: pointed out, there are some drugs that require monitoring, etc. Most likely because they would be ineffective or (even worse) dangerous if the guidelines are not followed. Either way, without further info from you, I have to say I can understand the Clinic's reluctance to give you the drugs. If it is because they would be ineffective then they would be wasting precious resources on a person who will not, ultimately, be helped. If it is because they would be dangerous, they are, in the end, looking out for both you and theirselves. They do not want to kill you and medical malpractice suits are expensive especially when they have limited funds to begin with.

I can understand your being upset if you are denied life saving drugs. But if you do value your life it might be wise to talk with the staff at the Clinic again and see if they can help you with whatever it is that makes it difficult for you to fulfill their requirements.

I wish you the best and hope your medical condition is soon under control.

posted @ Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 19:25

[quote][b]Shalmaneser[/b] - As a personal opinion, that's ethically worse than mooching. [/quote]

Thank you! +infinity.

posted @ Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 09:21

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - Culture and gender are not equivalent.[/quote]

So where do all these violent men learn their behavior? Who is it that told them violence is acceptable?

I do agree that the existence of “thug” culture is a problem and contributes to the acceptability of violence within the Black community. I also think the fact that it is so visible makes it easy to target while the less obvious contributors to male violence in other populations is ignored. Those other contributors are just as important but, for whatever reason, they are not scrutinized, criticized and decried on a daily, ongoing basis as “thug” culture is. Why?

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - You have the option to pick up a white 20 year old male on one side of the street and a black 20 year old male on the other side of the street…Now, looking at this purely though a statistical lens, one guy is 7 times more likely to bring harm to the cab driver than the other. It would be asinine to ignore this fact.[/quote]

I understand the cab driver’s dilemma and his reason for making such a choice. But by the same reasoning, considering domestic violence stats, it seems women would be much better off choosing other women, rather than men, as romantic partners. Big smile

posted @ Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 09:18

[quote][b]Okra[/b] - There is a difference in culture. There isn't a significant portion of white America that shares a mentality that crime is "cool" and that it earns you respect among your family and peers and that success is something to be ashamed of.[/quote]

You do realize that a higher percentage of the Black population does not commit crimes than the percentage of Blacks who do commit crimes? How many Blacks are out there, just like so many Whites, being good citizens, working to support their families, trying to raise their kids to also be good citizens? More than you will ever give them credit for.

I have been looking for stats comparing percentages of non-criminal Blacks to criminal Blacks but haven't been able to find a clear comparison. The closest I came was stats that aprox 33% of Black males are involved in the criminal justice system in some way. Even without taking into consideration all the factors that contribute to this situation, that still leaves 2/3rds of the Black male population who are not criminals. I'd say that is a "significant portion" of Black America that shares the same values as the White folks you hold in such high regard.

posted @ Wednesday, August 21, 2013 - 21:50

[quote][b]snarkydude[/b] - I have a challenge: would you be willing to walk by yourself into Bethel Homes, Rocksprings Homes, Rolling Ridge, or the Iron Triangle, and just stroll around? If not, why not? If you say you wouldn't go, you're profiling.[/quote]

I didn’t say people should act stupidly, so, no, I wouldn’t. But neither would I walk through any crime-ridden area by myself. Nor go to a bar by myself (and especially accept a drink from a man I didn’t know), nor park next to a van with a man sitting alone inside, nor walk up to a car to give a man directions, nor allow a child to be alone with any Youth leader, Pastor, neighbor or any man I did not know extremely well. I also become very vigilant anytime a man is approaching me on a low-populated street (day or night) whether the man is White or Black. I am, however, always aware of the fact that the men (or neighborhood occupants) I am wary of are just as likely to be decent human beings who mean me no harm at all. And if I met any of these same men (White or Black) at a party or in a large group of other people I would not automatically be wary of them. It is a matter of context.

There is a difference between being smart about the situations you put yourself in / being aware of your surroundings and making a generalized judgement about all people of one race, gender, ethnicity, etc based on the acts of others who are members of the same “community” group. It is also quite another thing to hold all those members responsible for the acts of some of the members of their “community” group.

And while you think my example about the high percentage of violent crimes committed by men & the comparison of how people react is “weak” it is actually a very strong comparison. “This” group of people is responsible for a high percentage of violent crimes but there is not a constant barrage of talk about how this bad behavior is to be expected, nor constant outrage about the “leadership” of the group not speaking out & doing something to quell the violent behavior. “That” group of people is also responsible for a high percentage of violent crime but just the opposite is true; constant outrage expressed about how common the behavior is and about the lack of “leadership” saying or doing anything about it. Two equivalent situations, two completely opposite reactions. Why?

posted @ Wednesday, August 21, 2013 - 21:16

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