Hey there Orlando taxpayers: We're about to cost you a boatload of money!
Well, OK, not us per se. As you may have read in the Orlando Sentinel, the Florida Civil Rights Association has filed two civil rights complaints against the city alleging that the city violated federal and state civil rights laws by denying the applications of Mark's Ark, a group home for homeless veterans, and the Concerned Citizens to Combat Cancer, which helps female cancer survivors, to open and operate in Parramore.
Where do we fit in? Let's ask FCRA president J Willie David III, who sent us the following via e-mail. "I would like to thank `Orlando Weekly` for reporting on the city of Orlando's ban on `new social services in` Parramore. The Florida Civil Rights Association used your report to guide our five-month investigation."
The report to which he refers is a three-part series this newspaper published in early 2006 that discussed the city's homeless problem, its connection with the Parramore neighborhood and city officials' total lack of leadership on the issue. For the last decade, the city has banned social service organizations from locating or expanding in that neighborhood — hence the denial of Mark's Ark's and the Concerned Citizens to Combat Cancer's applications — because it feels such organizations ruin Parramore's chance for economic recovery.
Meanwhile, the problem grows, the Coalition for the Homeless' shelter is in desperate need of renovation, and the city has barely lifted a finger. So David, using our story as a launching point, filed his complaints. Now the city will have to defend itself — and its entrenched, untenable Parra-more policy too.You're welcome.
You know that annoying bastard in the Subway commercials, the one who's milked a living (and D-list celebrity status) out of the fact that he was once a fatass, then ate a bunch of crappy subs and lost weight? Don't you just want to smack him in the biscuit? Here's your chance.
Jared Fogle is touring the country for the 10-year anniversary of fouling our collective consciousness with his presence on something called the "Tour de Pants," proving once again that if he weren't doing this he'd be working the stun line at a meatpacking plant. He'll be at the Downtown Orlando YMCA at 6 a.m. (jerk) March 19, then at a Subway in Baldwin Park from noon to 1 p.m., where they will put him to work making sandwiches. At least until the cameras stop rolling, at which time he'll sneak off into his waiting limo and start mainlining Twinkies, probably.
Oh, great. A little man-on-dog (or sheep, pig, armadillo) action won't be allowed in Florida anymore, now that the state Legislature is considering a bill that would outlaw bestiality. What right does the government have to interfere in the affections of two consenting adults of different species?
This transgression on the rights of lonely losers everywhere, which would make sex with animals a first-degree felony, is the result of a few infamous cases, including that of Alan Yoder, a blind Tallahassee man who admitted to police during the summer of 2005 that he had had sex with his guide dog. (He invited a female friend to join in, but she wasn't an animal lover and later turned him in.)
Charging Yoder proved tricky, however, since bumping uglies with members of the animal kingdom isn't technically illegal in the Sunshine State, likely a byproduct of the fact that the capital is in Tallahassee and there ain't shit else to do. He was originally charged with felony animal cruelty, though the charge was later reduced to "breach of the peace, by engaging in sexual activity with a guide dog."
Guess what the guide dog's name was? Lucky! Ha ha ha!
For those already in awe of the grand homo bipartisanship of the remarkable — but failed — Florida Red and Blue campaign fighting the gay marriage amendment (No. 2, just like poop), just wait until you see the almost Prince-like genius of its outgrowth, Say No 2.
The "easy to remember" campaign slogan was designed recently to continue the noble ambitions of FRB president Rand Hoch in a manner, we guess, that suggests both action and text-lexicon simplicity: "Say No 2 taking away existing benefits and legal protections. Say No 2 hurting Florida's seniors who are unmarried by choice. Say No 2 eliminating shared health care and pension benefits …." You get the drift. They've started a new website (www.SayNo2.com), but urge you not to weep at the demise of the group's color-coded predecessor. "Florida Red and Blue isn't going anywhere," they pass a hanky. "We'll be behind the scenes reminding Floridians to Say No 2." Ugh. This will all B over B4 U know it.
God's lawyers over at the Liberty Counsel have their panties perpetually bunched about something, and this time it's the April 25 Day of Silence to protest gay name-calling, bullying and discrimination. Promoted by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, student groups at schools across the county -— including - Winter Park, University, Seminole, Osceola, Poinciana, Lake Mary and Oviedo high schools — will encourage their fellow students to shut their pieholes for an entire day as a means of "voicing" their support of diversity and their condemnation of discrimination.
Whatever. Sounds granola and all, but think about it … thousands of chatty Cathys and Keiths not making a freakin' peep all day? No talk about the mall, who's getting with whom and who's holding? No sass-mouth while we're trying to watch Flavor of Love? Sounds like every parent's dream.
Naturally the Liberty Counsel doesn't quite see it that way, calling it a "pro-homosexual event" that is "about getting students to accept radical, destructive ideas about sexuality." They also argue that because it will disrupt school, the movement is not protected by the First Amendment.
Their solution? Keep your kids home so they don't turn gay or get strange notions in their little heads about not beating up queers.
We all know Jesus was about the flash, and in that spirit Fusion Church in Apopka has a totally pimped-out Easter celebration planned. From 10 a.m. to noon March 22 at the Wekiva High School football field they're going to drop 15,000 candy-filled eggs, some containing "golden tickets" redeemable for prizes, from a seven-story lift! Which is totally what the Lord would have done had the seven-story lift been invented back then. Make sure your kids are wearing helmets.
This week's report by Jeffrey C. Billman, Billy Manes, Deanna Sheffield and Bob Whitby.email@example.com