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Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 5,330

Journal Archives

United Airlines... Punks!

So I'm sitting here in my hotel in Charlottesville, Virginia, trying to print my boarding passes so I don't have to mess around with checking in at the ticket counter in a few hours -- I want to be able to just head straight to my gate without having to trek clear across the entire fucking airport.

Turns out the pieces of shit just completed their merger with Continental Airlines, so their whole user database just got converted, so my old MileagePlus frequent flier number no longer works. (This must have happened within the past 5 days, because everything worked fine on Wednesday.)

While I can still access my United account via e-mail, I need access to a printer to print off the boarding passes. Only place I can do that is at the hotel's business center, but they have a bunch of questionable software installed on it, I don't trust that no spyware or keyloggers aren't installed on there, so I don't feel comfortable logging into my e-mail from there.

So I called their toll-free customer service number to find out what my new user name is and I've been on hold for over 15 minutes due to "higher than expected call volume over the past few days." Due to the merger, no doubt. These dumb-asses obviously didn't think this thing through very well. It's the same story whenever one big corporation gets bought out by another -- customer service goes straight to hell.

CORPORATE BASTARDS!! Some day I will own my own plane so I don't have to put up with this bullshit every time I want to fly somewhere.

Even if Trayvon Martin Did Beat Down George Zimmerman, He Shouldn't Have Been Shot

Bottom line for me is, even if Zimmerman really did get beat down by the kid, he should have just taken his lumps and accepted the ass-whoopin' for stalking the kid in the first place. If I were a 17-year-old being followed by some strange older man, especially one of a different race, I'd be wary as fuck and tempted to confront him myself.

You can't blame the kid for getting physical with him, when this self-appointed vigilante decided to play hero and take the law into his own hands. I mean, if the dude had just stayed in his car and the kid had pulled him out and started wailing on him that would be one thing, but it sounds like this creep flat-out stalked the kid and moved in on him, escalating the situation unnecessarily and provoking the beat-down, then escalating it even further by drawing his gun and shooting the kid.

It's really hard to claim self-defense when you go out of your way to look for trouble. CCW permits don't automatically make you a deputy of the law. They are only for defending yourself if trouble finds YOU. Not the other way around.

He really should have been arrested at least for voluntary manslaughter and forced to post bail. Can't really blame the black community for feeling slighted when, if the roles were reversed, you know damn straight the black kid would have been arrested and tried as an adult.

A real sad situation, all the way around.

LEGALIZE MARINARA! (Some Pics from Today's Reason Rally on the National Mall)

Just got back from the rally today, and what a rally it was!

Never before have so many atheists gathered in one place to promote secular values. We were really tempting God's fate, as He sent some rain our way, but no one got struck by lightning, so I guess He decided not to smite us heathens after all.

They said during the peak of the rally around 1pm that the park service said that our numbers eclipsed Glenn Beck's rally a couple years ago, but I'd have to see the aerial shot to believe that. (As our rally took place on the EAST side of the Washington Monument, not the west side near the Lincoln memorial along the reflecting pools.)

It was mostly apolitical, trying to cast a wide umbrella over all non-believer/skeptic groups, but they did have a couple conservative speakers like Penn Gillette (of Penn and Teller fame) and of course a couple outspoken liberals like Bill Maher. But over-all, the message was mostly positive, uniting all non-believers regardless of political leanings, in support of separation of church and state and science over superstition.

Here are some pics:

This is the empty rally grounds an hour before the event officially started, you can see the Washington Monument in the background.

Here you can see people beginning to fill in near the staging area. We were able to stake out a pretty close spot.

Around a quarter till 10 o'clock, it started getting crowded.

Darth Vader says: "I Find Your Lack of Faith Refreshing"


2:30p was about the peak of the rally, we were all sandwiched in real good, endless crowds in every direction.

People, people everywhere.

There were lots of great signs, but my shitty cell-phone camera couldn't zoom in, so I missed some good shots.

After around 3pm the crowd started to thin out, but the merchandise tents were packed when we checked them out around 4:30p.

We ended up leaving by 5pm to beat the crowds jamming the Metro (subway), the only thing we missed was the band Bad Religion jamming it out, but I saw pretty much all I wanted to see, namely Richard Dawkins and PZ Myers.

It was great!

WTF?! Jury Duty!

I just got summoned for Federal jury duty next month (first time I've ever been called to serve), and after I got online and submitted my questionnaire electronically, I spent the next hour following links reading up on what is to be expected of me.

So I started reading the Jury Handbook and stumbled across this gem, under the sub-section "The Jurors' Solemn Oath":

After the voir dire is completed, the jurors selected to try the case will be sworn in. The judge or clerk will state to the jury: "Members of the Jury, you will rise, hold up your right hands, and be sworn to try this case."

The jurors then rise and hold up their right hands. The jurors face the judge or the clerk who is to administer the oath. That official slowly, solemnly, and clearly repeats the oath. The jurors indicate by their responses and upraised hands that they take this solemn oath.

Jurors not wishing to take an oath may request to affirm instead of swear. In some districts the jury is sworn upon the Bible and not by uplifted hand.


WTF?! Are there really still any jurisdictions that really require you to swear your oath on a BIBLE? I mean, its the 21st Century not the 19th anymore! How is this not a blatant violation of separation of church and state? I mean, MAYBE, in certain parts of the Deep South I could see it, but even then, why hasn't the Department of Justice put its foot down and brought this practice to an end already? There really should be just one uniform standard for all Federal courts, and it should NOT involve bringing anyone's religious paraphernalia into it. I mean, do they have Korans and Bhagavad Gītās in stock just in case a non-Christian dare affront the courtroom with their presence? Or do they just embarrass and publicly shame them when they politely refuse to place their hand on that particular Book of Atrocities and Genocides?

Kind of reminds me of the only time I attended a local city council meeting 10 years ago and they opened with a sectarian Christian prayer. Completely caught me off-guard. I believe they finally ended the practice with much complaining by the Christ-in-Your-Face crowd, but I can't believe its still happening in FEDERAL courts of all places!

Have any of you been in a situation where you were "asked" to place your hand on a Bible in order to somehow prove you are trustworthy and honest?

I just can't believe it.

Colorado Courts Continue to Protect Felons’ Rights to Keep and Bear Arms

As I noted last Fall, Colorado courts have treated the Colorado Constitution’s right to keep and bear arms provision as substantially protecting felons’ rights to keep guns for self-defense — an approach quite different from that used by the U.S. Supreme Court in interpreting the Second Amendment, or by other states’ courts interpreting those states’ constitutions. Today’s State v. Carbajal (Colo. Ct. App. Mar. 1, 2012) reaffirms that. An excerpt:

In 1876, the new State of Colorado adopted a constitution that included a provision in its bill of rights establishing a right to keep and bear arms in defense of one’s home, person, and property:

The right of no person to keep and bear arms in defense of his home, person and property, or in aid of the civil power when thereto legally summoned, shall be called into question; but nothing herein contained shall be construed to justify the practice of carrying concealed weapons.

Colo. Const. art. II, § 13 (section 13) (emphasis added). This provision has never been amended.


Really, if a convict is deemed safe enough to be released from prison, he/she really ought to have all rights of citizenship back, including being able to vote, serve on jury duty, and yes, even RKBA.

It shouldn't be a long, hard process to get all your civil rights restored like it is now in many states. Nothing tells an ex-con that he/she is unwelcome back in civil society than continuing to deny him/her their basic civil rights. If we want people to change and be productive members of society, we should treat them as full citizens, not second-class citizens their whole lives.

HAHAHA! Ted Nugent Just Endorsed Mittens!

Mitt Romney may finally be shaking a memory regarding gun control legislation that has haunted him since he was governor of Massachusetts by picking up a critical endorsement from hard-rocking pro-gun outdoorsman, author and gun rights icon Ted Nugent.

The “Motor City Madman” threw his considerable weight behind Romney’s campaign Friday, hours after this column was tipped that the endorsement was imminent, during Thursday evening’s Romney fund raiser at Bellevue’s Meydenbauer Center. This column discussed that gathering and the importance of sportsman and gun owner attendance at Saturday’s Republican caucus gatherings.

Nugent issued a one-sentence comment:

“After a long heart and soul conversation with Mitt Romney today, I concluded this good man will properly represent we the people (and) I endorsed him.”—Ted Nugent

Is it that surprising? Nugent and Romney both hail from Michigan. Romney was also recently endorsed by Rob Keck, who spent some time hunting with the former governor and presidential hopeful last fall in Montana.


Heads are going to freakin' EXPLODE over on FreeRepublic.com! They already turned on Ann Coulter months ago for endorsing Romney.

NUGE: What a total sell-out!

Now all we need is for the NRA to get behind Mitt Romney, and we'll know the wool has been completely pulled over everyone's eyes.

Mitt Romney is really no better than Obama on gun rights. Anyone who thinks he'll nominate pro-gun justices if elected is drinking the Kool-Aid.

This Republican primary season has just gone from crazy to bat-shit insane!

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