Saturday, April 28, 2012

Crazy-10, Darwin-0

Ya know, sometimes I’m glad I’m on the downside of my lifecycle because lately it seems like the whole world done gone plum loco!

Okay, maybe I don’t mean the entire world. There are some sane and rational places left, and as soon as I figure where they are, I’ll be happy to clue you in. But I can tell you for sure that Tennessee and couple of other places aren’t on that list.

The Tennessee legislature never ceases to amaze me when it comes to choosing to spend its time (and the public’s money) dwelling on issues that will do nothing to solve the 8% unemployment there or their dismal educational rankings among the nation’s schools. Instead, they seem to spend an inordinate (and if you ask me, downright creepy) amount of time focusing on the sexual and gender mores of its citizenry. It’s as if the entire governing body is made up of the John Lithgow minister character in the movie Footloose.

This state, which forces an abstinence-only curriculum on their schools, ironically ranks in the top ten states when it comes to teenage pregnancies, proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that when you tell hormone driven teens not to do something that feels that good, they are bound to listen. 

I’ve written about these folks in past blogs, and particularly the one entitled Let My People Pee, in which they tried to pass a law prohibiting transgendered folk from using the public facilities of their new gender. In that case, they wanted to station guards outside public bathrooms to prevent bodily waste from accidentally co-mingling with that of the other gender, and thus spawning a new Sodom and/or Gomorrah.

The latest adventure of this august legislative body (am I allowed to say body without inducing spontaneous orgies in Tennesseans?) is to ban hand-holding in their schools because it is, get ready for it, a “gateway sexual activity”. It makes me wonder what is going on in their public schools. Are students so horny that they break out in to spontaneous intercourse on their way to creationist biology class? It seems to me that if they really want to ban such urges to merge, they ought to also pass a law against serving apples at lunch, since that’s what caused Adam and Eve’s downfall. That makes about the same amount of sense as banning hand holding.

Now, you would think that something as crazy as this would pass with only the thinnest of voting margins wouldn’t you? In fact the Tennessee Senate passed it by a vote of 28-1, with the lone, sensible dissent coming from Sen. Beverly Marrero, who said

"All of us realize that abstinence is the absolutely only way to prevent any kind of sexually transmitted disease." But teens contending with raging hormones need honest information, not unrealistic nonsense about how hand-holding leads to getting knocked up. And really, with a Sex Ed program like this, it's a shock that Tennessee ranks in the top 10 for number of pregnant teenagers, isn't it?"

Guess who will be eating lunch alone in the Tennessee Legislature’s lunchroom from now on?

Why stop there though? If hand holding is a gateway sexual activity, what happens when you combine it with alcohol?  It’s crystal clear to me that the Tennessee legislature should convene in emergency session and pass legislation banning such bar drinks as the Mountain Dew Me, the Slippery Bald Beaver, the Bend over Shirley, the Butt Sex, the Suck, Bang and Blow, Sex on my Face, Sex on the Beach, and finally, The Blow Job. But then again, what would the male members of the Legislature have to titter lasciviously about in the bars after all their hard work a-legislatin all day if not for these drinks?

 It’s interesting to note too that all of these drinks are female oriented and not particularly complimentary to women. Perhaps these good ole boys should teach their men folk a little bit more in the way of respecting women and not assume that just because they hold hands with them, that it is the gateway to sex.

Abstinence, along with gender preference and sexual identity is a personal choice, not a legislative one, and the Tennessee legislature needs to get their collective libidos in check, get some therapy, and get back to the business of rescuing their state. Tennessee is, after all, the Volunteer State, and abstinence et al should fall into that category, not the “do it or you’ll be fined, fired or imprisoned” one.

As crazy as Tennessee is, it seems to be getting a run for its money by Arizona. Apparently the 110 degree ‘dry heat’ seems to be getting the better of them, because in the last couple of years they have passed laws that among other things, allows you to bring a loaded, concealed weapon into a bar, forbids welfare recipients from having the “niceties” of life such as cable television or a car, repealed KidsCare, a health plan for poor children, and an immigration law which allows the police to demand “papers” from anyone they suspect might be an illegal immigrant (Colonel Klink for Governor!). Oh yes, they also have a law that demands presidential candidates provide birth certificates if they are to run for President of the United States in Arizona. Hmmm... I wonder what made them come up with that one.

But the one that takes the cake, at least in the United States, is a newly signed law by Governor Jan Brewer (female) that has determined, through exhaustive research I’m sure, that life now begins before conception.

Well of course it does Arizona! Everyone knows that. And unicorns live in New Jersey, along with stepping on a crack being the leading cause of breaking your mother’s back.
What the hell is going on here?

What’s going on is that is that there is a patriarchal cabal taking place in our country. This is a concerted, unified effort by ultra-right wing to keep the power to achieve real social change away from women and every other social and ethnic minority. The ole boys who have managed to keep us all in check for a good long time are losing their grip on directing the show and they know it. And so the only way they can effectively keep women barefoot and pregnant is to effectively take away control of their bodies. And shame on Jan Brewer for being a traitor to her own gender for the sake of some stupid governorship and for being a toady to the machine which funds her campaigns.

But I’ve saved the best for last.

Al Arabiya News has reported that in Egypt, the majority Islamist Parliament has drafted a law entitled the Farewell Intercourse Law, which would entitle the husband of the deceased woman to have sex with the corpse for up to six hours after the death. Why six hours? I don’t know, but can only surmise that even Islamist extremists have an “icky” rule when it comes to necrophilia.

To be fair and balanced, Moroccan ‘cleric’ Zamzami Abdul Bari, claimed that the woman should be afforded the same “privilege” with her dead husband. Well, thank goodness for that. What a progressive society!  Can Tennessee and Arizona be far behind?

The truth is, as crazy as we Americans view the habits of those fundamentalist religious radicals “over there”, we have an ample supply of them here as well. All have as primary goals suppression of free will and thought. All achieve their goals through oppression and elimination of expression in the name of God or Allah. All are self-anointed power hungry bullies who use intimidation, fear, and severe consequences to enforce their power. The only difference, however, between what happens ‘over there’ versus ‘here’ is that our crazies cloak their insanity under the guise of democracy.

That’s it. I’m done bitching. Everybody hug, everybody eat. Abbondanza!   

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