YOUR DAILY WEEKLY READER: believing in religion, sugar, gambling and death


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A BIG UNITED NATIONS SMACKDOWN FOR A HISTORY OF CATHOLIC ABUSES, OR A STATEMENT OF THE OBVIOUS: A U.N. human rights committee denounced the Vatican on Wednesday for adopting policies that allowed priests to rape and molest tens of thousands of children over decades, and urged it to open its files on the pedophiles and the churchmen who concealed their crimes. In a devastating report, the U.N. committee also severely criticized the Holy See for its attitudes toward homosexuality, contraception and abortion and said it should review its policies to ensure children's rights and their access to health care are guaranteed. On sex abuse, “the committee is gravely concerned that the Holy See has not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed, has not taken the necessary measures to address cases of child sexual abuse and to protect children, and has adopted policies and practices which have led to the continuation of the abuse by, and the impunity of, the perpetrators,” the report said. (via LA Times)


OH, AND THIS THING HAPPENED: “So we went ahead and watched that Bill Nye and Ken Ham joint appearance — really, ‘debate’ is the entirely wrong word — hosted by the Creation Museum in Kentucky yesterday. If you want to see it, it is on the YouTubes. Half of it was fairly entertaining, and the other half can be effectively simulated by teaching a small feathery dinosaur descendant to repeat ‘Bible,’ ‘Were you there?’ and ‘secularist’ at you for roughly an hour. As we noted yesterday, there are plenty of good reasons why scientists shouldn’t debate creationists, and those reasons were on display in last night’s spectacle. Ken Ham, the founder of the Creation Museum and perpetrator of the “Were you there?” strategy of teaching small Christian children to become insufferable, was about as coherent as you’d expect, attempting to redefine science into ‘observational science’ — stuff you can measure through direct observation — and “historical science,” a completely made-up creationist term that means ‘No one saw dinosaurs evolve into birds so it’s just a story.’” (via Wonkette)



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THE SUGAR DOESN’T TASTE AS SWEET WHEN IT DILUTES YOUR POLITICS AND RUINS THE ENVIRONMENT: In the final quarter of 2011 the FDP raised in $45,000 in sugar money and in 2012 the FDP raised more than $200,000 from sugar, which gave the lobby a disproportionate influence over Democratic elected officials.  Then in 2013, Sugar continued the march giving more money to the Florida Democratic Party with $60,000 over the final two quarters

. Sugar’s subsidy in congress has also been saved time and time again thanks to the votes of Florida Democrats. At one time in the late 1990s large elements of the national GOP leadership were committed to cutting the subsidy including Majority Leader Dick Armey, but it was  largely Democrats in this state that fought them with some help from the Clinton White House and eventually won. Despite a reputation that has been well earned that Republicans are less environmentally conscious than Democrats, In southern Florida more often than not, those who have strongly opposed Big Sugar are Republicans. Many south Florida Republicans have in the past supported “Polluters Pay” legislation and constitutional amendments. Conservative arguments were made stating making polluters pay would keep property taxes lower and enhance economic development in way of tourism dollars and other eco-related industries. As a liberal, I subscribe to these arguments even if made by conservatives. (via The Florida Squeeze)


HAHAHA. IF WE’RE GONNA HAVE WEED AND GAY MARRIAGE, MIGHT AS WELL TAKE THAT GAMBLING LEAP: After years of resistance, the conservative leadership of the Florida House has signaled its willingness to pass legislation that would expand gambling to include new Las Vegas-style casinos in Miami Dade and Broward in exchange for a constitutional amendment that requires voters to approve any new games in the future. ‘I would be willing to talk about gaming in the State of Florida, even expansion, in return for contraction in some areas and passing a constitutional amendment,’ said House Speaker Will Weatherford in an exclusive interview with the Herald/Times on Tuesday. Weatherford added, however, that for the House to support new casinos there would have to be two strings attached: Gov. Rick Scott would have to negotiate a new gaming compact with the Seminole Tribe in 2014 — a year before the a key provision is set to expire — and the new casinos would not start up unless a constitutional amendment is passed in November to require voter approval of any subsequent games in the future. ‘It’s a trade-off that I’m willing to do,’ Weatherford said.” (via Miami Herald) 


SPEAKING OF GAY MARRIAGE, SOMETIMES IT’S HARDER TO READ SOMEBODY ELSE’S MEMORY OF YOUR STRUGGLE THAN IT IS TO READ YOUR OWN: “Marriage matters — especially to those on the outside looking in, the thousands of same-sex couples who wonder what will become of them, of their houses, of their assets, of their savings, of their livelihoods, if the unthinkable happens, denied the most basic protections because of whom they’re attracted to. I witnessed this scenario firsthand — one straight people never have to worry about, one that seems foreign and unimaginable to many of us — through Billy’s eyes, throughout this unnecessary ordeal. I saw the tears, the frustration, the hopelessness, the feeling that he had nothing left to live for. I drove him to the hospital when he had a nervous breakdown. And I saw him on the other side, when he emerged stronger, determined to fight so that no one else has to go through the hell he endured.Marriage matters. Marriage equality matters. And we shouldn’t have to wait for a court to make us do the right thing.” (via Folio Weekly)



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