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Gender: Do not display
Current location: Virginia
Member since: Wed Jun 1, 2011, 07:34 PM
Number of posts: 6,716

About Me

Navy brat-->University fac brat. All over-->Wisconsin-->TN-->VA. RN (ret), married, grandmother of 11. Progressive since birth. My mouth may be foul but my heart is wide open.

Journal Archives

Kyle Rittenhouse trial: Judge has sparked controversy before, insists the case is not 'political'

Kenosha County Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder is the longest serving current judge in Wisconsin. He's also becoming a polarizing national figure for his early decisions in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse.

Schroeder, 75, said Monday the people shot by Rittenhouse could not be called "victims" — a term he routinely bans in his trials unless someone has been convicted of a crime against the person. But after Schroeder also didn't ban defense lawyers from calling the men "looters, rioters, arsonists or any other pejorative term," national scrutiny followed.

Rittenhouse will go on trial next week for shooting three people, two fatally, during a protest against police brutality last year in Kenosha, about 40 miles southeast of Milwaukee.

Coverage of Schroeder's early decisions has prompted a deeper look at his long career.


QAnon Is 4 Years Old and Believers Are Still Waiting for Hillary Clinton's Arrest

Four years ago today, an anonymous 4chan user posted the following message:

“Hillary Clinton will be arrested between 7:45 AM - 8:30 AM EST on Monday - the morning on [sic] Oct 30, 2017.”

An hour later they followed up with some more detail about the operation, including predictions of “massive riots organized in defiance” and a claim that the national guard would be “activated for duty across most major cities.”

Needless to say, Clinton was not arrested then—or ever—but these were the first of almost 5,000 messages posted by a user who became known as Q, and they inspired the conspiracy movement known as QAnon.

Four years later, the movement’s God-Emperor, former President Donald Trump, is out of office. Q went silent almost a year ago. An innumerable list of Q’s predictions have failed to come true. But true believers are still holding out hope.


Should young workers still have to 'pay their dues'?

Fetch coffee, file expense reports, take the night shift – entry-level workers are expected to do the grunt work. But is there a point to this professional hazing?

When Caitlin, a 24-year-old in Pennsylvania, US, graduated from her nursing program about a year ago, she was assigned to the night shift.

“Most new nurses are sent into the night shift, which some people love,” she says. “For me it just wrecked my body and my life. I went into a terrible depression. I’m a super extroverted, daytime, sunshine person. It totally messed up my eating habits, my hormones, everything.”

Caitlin, who is withholding her surname for job security, says her circadian rhythm was so thrown off, she became unable to drive herself home after a shift without falling asleep. “Once,” she says, “I woke up in the opposite lane, a half-second from a head-on collision.”

She approached her superiors and human resources to try to get her hours changed, to no avail. “The way you get to day shift is a seniority list based on when you started,” says Caitlin. “In order for me to get a full-time day shift position, I had to basically wait for people to quit, retire or leave. At the time, there was a day-shift position available, but they wouldn’t give it to me because there was someone who’d been there longer than me. It was a tough lesson: they weren’t going to let me skip the line.”

Ultimately, says Caitlin, she wasn’t shocked by that outcome. As one of the newest nurses on staff, she knew she was expected to work those overnight hours, no matter how tough it was. “You’ve got to just pay your dues,” she says. “I was kind of taught that is how life works. You’re at the bottom until you work your way up to the top.”


China limits construction of 'super high-rise buildings'

China has restricted smaller cities in the country from building "super high-rise buildings", as part of a larger bid to crack down on vanity projects.

The country is home to some of the world's highest buildings, including Shanghai Tower, which has 128 floors.

Local reports also questioned the need for low-density cities to build skyscrapers, suggesting they were built for vanity and not practicality.

There is already an existing ban on buildings taller than 500 metres.

The announcement was mostly met with approval on Chinese social media site Weibo, with many stating that the super-high skyscrapers were "not needed... they're just gimmicky".

Earlier this year the country issued a ban on "ugly architecture".

"We're in a stage where people are too impetuous and anxious to produce something that can actually go down in history," Zhang Shangwu, deputy head of Tongji University's College of Architecture and Urban Planning had earlier told the South China Morning Post.


TN State Senator steps down from committee role after being indicted for campaign finance conspiracy

A federal grand jury in Nashville returned a five-count indictment charging Tennessee State Senator Brian Kelsey, 43, and Nashville social club owner Joshua Smith, 44, with violating multiple campaign finance laws as part of a conspiracy to benefit Kelsey's 2016 campaign for U.S. Congress.

At the start of a special session of the Tennessee Legislature Wednesday, Kelsey maintained his innocence and announced to senators he would be temporarily stepping from from his leadership role as chair of the Senate Education Committee to focus on the legal battle.

According to the indictment, beginning in February 2016 and going through October 2016, Kelsey and Smith conspired with others to violate federal campaign finance laws to secretly and unlawfully funnel money from Kelsey's state campaign to his authorized federal campaign.

The indictment said Kelsey and others also caused a national political organization to make illegal, excessive contributions to Kelsey’s federal campaign committee by secretly coordinating with the organization on advertisements supporting Kelsey’s federal candidacy and to cause false reports of contributions and expenditures to be filed with the Federal Election Commission.


Men shot by Rittenhouse can't be called 'victims' at trial, judge rules

A Monday decision from a Wisconsin judge about terms lawyers could use in Kyle Rittenhouse's trial is again drawing national attention to the case.

Rittenhouse will go on trial next week for shooting three people, two fatally, during a protest against police brutality last year in Kenosha, about 40 miles southeast of Milwaukee.

Kenosha County Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder has a standard rule prohibiting use of the term "victim" until someone is convicted of a crime, and Schroeder said the people shot by Rittenhouse could not be called victims.

Schroeder was also not swayed by a request from Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger seeking to bar defense lawyers from calling the men "looters, rioters, arsonists or any other pejorative term."

While looting, rioting and arson occurred in the two nights before the shooting, Binger argued that unless there's specific proof the people shot by Rittenhouse engaged in any of those actions, and that Rittenhouse had seen it, the labels are even more "loaded" than what judge ascribes to "victim."

This proves what I have always known about Kenosha (I grew up in Madison). We always knew that Kenosha was corrupt, even back in the 1950s and 60s when it was called "Little Chicago" or "Chicago North"

Brazil senators back criminal charges against Bolsonaro over Covid handling

Brazilian senators have voted to recommend charging President Jair Bolsonaro over his handling of the devastating Covid pandemic.

A Senate panel backed a report calling for charges against Mr Bolsonaro including crimes against humanity, after 600,000 deaths from coronavirus.

The findings will be sent to the chief prosecutor, a Bolsonaro appointee.

The president has maintained he is "guilty of absolutely nothing" but the crisis has dented his popularity.

Brazil's death toll is second only to that of the United States.

There is no guarantee this vote will lead to actual criminal charges, as the report's recommendations must now be assessed by Prosecutor-General Augusto Aras, who is expected to protect the president.

Can you imagine?

'Worst List' names 180 colleges that are 'unsafe' for LGBTQ students

An LGBTQ nonprofit on Monday released its annual Worst List naming 180 colleges and universities as “the absolute worst, most unsafe campuses for LGBTQ youth.”

Campus Pride, which advocates for LGBTQ inclusivity and safety at U.S. colleges and universities, added 50 universities to the list since last year — the most extensive update since the list started in 2015, according to the organization.

The list includes colleges and universities that have either received or applied for a religious exemption to Title IX, a federal law that protects students from discrimination in federally funded schools, or have a “demonstrated history of anti-LGBTQ policies, programs and practices,” according to a news release.

At 180 schools, the list is the longest it has been in its six-year history. The list includes Brigham Young University in Utah; Seattle Pacific University; Malone University in Ohio; and Baylor University in Texas.

“These aren’t just bad campuses or the worst campuses — these campuses fundamentally are unsafe for LGBTQ students, and, as a result, they’re fundamentally unsafe for all students to go to,” Shane Windmeyer, founder and executive director of Campus Pride, said. “They promote an environment of hostility, of discrimination, harassment, toward a group of people, and who wants — when you’re trying to be educated — to have that type of negative learning environment?”


Intersex people have been challenging 'gender-normalizing surgery.' Doctors are starting to listen.

Bria Brown-King, 29, a Pennsylvania native, was raised as a girl. As Brown-King got older, however, they realized they were developing differently.

“I didn’t have the feminizing puberty that the other girls in my class had,” said Brown-King, who was born with an enlarged clitoris and started to develop masculine traits during puberty, including facial hair and larger muscles.

Brown-King, who has since come out as nonbinary and uses gender-neutral pronouns, was born with congenital adrenal hyperplasia, or CAH, a rare condition in which the body produces high levels of androgens — hormones that influence masculine characteristics. Those with CAH are considered intersex, an umbrella term used to describe individuals whose sex characteristics do not match strictly binary definitions of male or female. While rare, at least 1 in 2,000 people are born with a genital difference caused by an intersex trait, according to Human Rights Watch, an international research and advocacy group.

Though many children with CAH undergo “gender-normalizing surgery” to make the genitals look more typically female in infancy, Brown-King’s parents decided to wait until Brown-King was old enough to choose. But Brown-King said severe bullying over their appearance drove them to get the surgery at 13. Looking back, Brown-King, who now works for InterAct, an intersex advocacy group, said they would have made a different choice “had I known that it was OK to have the body that I had.”

It's not as uncommon as you might think. I worked peds for a short time and neonatal for almost a year. During that time I saw 4 kiddies (in nearly 1000 births) who had genital differences making them likely intersex.

How the US fails to take away guns from domestic abusers

How the US fails to take away guns from domestic abusers: ‘These deaths are preventable’

Paige Mitchell and Bradley Gray forged a bond over tragedy. Late one Sunday in October 2009, Mitchell’s husband borrowed a motorcycle from a neighbor on a whim, rumbled down a back road in rural Moundville, Alabama, and careened to his death. Almost exactly a year later, at almost precisely the same time of night, Gray’s wife died on the same county byway when her car crashed into a tree. Fate seemed to push Mitchell and Gray together, making their relationship hard to sever even as it descended into dysfunction.

Mitchell treated Gray’s son, Bradley Jr, like one of her own children, bringing him on outings with her daughters, Kayla and Kaci. Gray, who worked for a construction company, mowed Mitchell’s lawn and did repairs around her house. They went to concerts and cruised the Black Warrior River in Gray’s boat. Mitchell, a hairdresser with a gregarious personality, was glad to have someone to laugh with. But a darkness hovered over their relationship. Gray drank – a lot. And when he drank, his temper exploded. After beating a friend with a baseball bat in 2014, he was charged with felony assault, though the case was eventually dismissed.

Gray tried rehab, but he couldn’t stay sober, Mitchell’s family said. Many of the people who loved him gave up. Mitchell felt sorry for him, her family said; like the German shepherd she rescued and the foster children with disabilities she took in, she thought she could help him heal.

After Gray hit her in the chin with a metal hand-grip exerciser, bruising her face and and leaving her worried she would lose her tooth, Mitchell began to give up, too. But Moundville is tiny, and they kept running into each other. On the night of 9 July 2015, she went to Gray’s home to pick up her car and collect her belongings after another split. This time, according to the police, he showed her a Glock in a holster and threatened to use it: “I will blow you away.” Police arrested Gray at his house and confiscated his gun, evidence of a potential crime. Prosecutors charged him with third-degree domestic violence, punishable by up to a year in jail.

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