Tuesday, August 05, 2008

More evidence that age stupifies

This from an article about how different generations of women perceive Hillary Clinton's recent presidential campaign. It is illustrative of so many issues.

They're hopeful, says the 59-year-old Leet, in part because "we brought them up to believe they can do anything."

Leet has two daughters, both in their early 20s. She says they didn't perceive the anti-woman rhetoric that she sensed during Clinton's campaign.

She got angry in particular with media coverage and was not shy about sharing her opinions with them.

Their response? They rolled their eyes, she says, and said something like, "God, Mom, get over it."

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Dispatch from a Culture War

Through random browsing, I came across this article about Christian nut cases trying to shut down a porn shop and the lawsuits those efforts have engendered.

In short, a sex shop chain opened a franchise near a small town. Local Christians take pictures of the shop's patrons, publish them on-line, and contact their employers in the hope of driving away business and forcing the sex shop to shut down.

The legal arguments are all about zoning. The county granted the store a license without knowing what kind of business it would conduct. When they found out, they passed a zoning ordinance to shut them down. That case is pending. Meanwhile, the porn store is suing the county for not enforcing its zoning laws, allowing the Christians to build structures on county lands without a permit. They claim the protesters have cost them $300,000 in six months.

Although I am not one to patronize interstate porn shops, I'll make it a point to visit that one next time I'm in the area and get my picture published on line. It's not far from the Creation Museum so maybe I'll take the kids and make it another chuckling family educational field trip. I think it's important to teach young people about Christianity.

Even though I'd like to stop by and moon them, I actually agree with the Christian nuts on this issue. In the United States, they have all the constitutional rights they need to do what they are doing. With few restrictions that don't apply here, they can protest anything they choose to protest, take pictures of anyone who ventures out in the public sphere, and publish whatever they want to this world and beyond. The sad fact that they generally do not support those same rights for people with whom they disagree is not grounds for taking away their rights. Grounds for ridicule, yes. Oppression, no.

And frankly, I think porn shops should be zoned out of residential neighborhoods. Not because of what's inside them, but because of the kinds of people they attract. Of course I'm sure that upwards of 99.999 of porn patrons are not sex criminals, but still, some are and it's just not wise to have a business designed to attract the horny operating in a residential area.

But the porn business does have a point in its lawsuit against the county regarding selective enforcement of zoning laws. If a government does not enforce the laws, or not, the same way for everybody, then that government is not legitimate.

So hopefully all the laws will be enforced in a constitutionally consistent manner. And if the protesters can make the place unprofitable, let it close down. I'm just hoping I can get my ass on their web site before that happens.

Oooga boooga

Today's Washington Post provides a platform for an Alaskan villager to discuss some of the primitive beliefs and practices that make it so difficult for peoples everywhere to get good government. Heather Lende, apparently some kind of village storyteller, provides the same rationale for her continued support of the corrupt Alaskan senator Ted Stevens as primitives all over the world provide for their own personal Robert Mugabe's. At whatever cost to the nation.

Sure he's corrupt, but he buys her things, too.