Friday, January 14, 2011

Our Wedding

I thought I would go ahead and share my wedding video with my blog readers, provided any are interested. My wife and I got married on Jan 1st, 2011. Here is the wedding ceremony in two parts. Watch if you'd like!

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

They are guilty for their violent words!

Rep. John Dingell today read out a list of quotes of violent rhetoric from the right wing:

This is not at all new and has been brewing for some time. Bill Moyers, a couple of years ago, did a whole segment on it:

I know what those who would defended the far right - Note: we should distinguish between a right-winger and a conservative, they are not identical - will say. They will say that words don't kill people, that no real violence was actually intended by those who used violent language, and that you can't blame pundits and politicians for the actions of a few wackos.

This argument is too stupid to take seriously. When Glen Beck tells us that he wants to strangle Michael Moore, and kill Charlie Rangel with a shovel, when Sarah Palin tells us to reload because Obama and his people are dangerous socialists who will kill off grandma with their death panels, when tea-baggers bellow that they must "take their country back," "water the tree of liberty," and that Obama is a secret Muslim terrorist who is going to ruin our country from within, can we honestly say this does not lead to a violent political climate? Can so many violent and fearful comments really never lead "some wacko" to kill? That is nearly impossible to believe.

But if you are still in doubt that this does lead to such disasters, I quote Robert Wright from yesterday' New York Times

People on the left and right have been wrestling over the legacy of Jared Loughner, arguing about whether his shooting spree proves that the Sarah Palins and Glenn Becks of the world are fomenting violence. But it’s not as if this is the only data point we have. Here’s another one:

Six months ago, police in California pulled over a truck that turned out to contain a rifle, a handgun, a shotgun and body armor. Police learned from the driver — sometime after he opened fire on them — that he was heading for San Francisco, where he planned to kill people at the Tides Foundation. You’ve probably never heard of the Tides Foundation — unless you watch Glenn Beck, who had mentioned it more than two dozen times in the preceding six months, depicting it as part of a communist plot to “infiltrate” our society and seize control of big business.

Predictably the right-wing hate mongers have responded to the recent violent attacks in Arizona by whining and playing the victim. Sarah Palin, who has taken much heat because of rifle targets she put on a map over several democratic congress districts (including the poor woman who was shot!), responded by crying that we demean and offend her by saying her words could of led to this, and saying that we commit "blood libel" if we hold her in any way accountable.

Palin's response is, of course, shameful. Even worse are the many pundits who rushed to her defense, as if the real tragedy of the Arizona shootings is that some people thought Palin should tone down her violent rhetoric!

When some idiot like Palin runs around saying that the President of the United states "pals around with terrorists," wants to create "death panels" to kill grandma, puts bull eyes over districts of the opposing parties representatives, tells people that Obama wants to take away their guns and Bibles, can anyone honestly tell me that she is not contributing to a climate of violence?

Enough nonsense. Let us please be honest the words of these hate-mongers are violent and they must be held accountable for that.

Sarah Palin's words are not likely responsible for the shootings in Arizona. But the violence in her words and the words of many like her are creating a climate of fear, hostility, and anger. Those who speak like her must be held accountable for their words.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Mrs. Palin, Obesity is no laughing matter!

Sarah Palin is taking a lot of heat as a result of the Arizona shooting. This blog post, however, is not about that. If you wish to know my views on that matter, another writer has stated them quite well, and I refer you to that link here. This post is about Sarah Palin's curt dismissal of Michelle Obama's efforts to fight childhood obesity. In this matter too, I find that another person has stated my own opinion better than I could.

With her permission, I reproduce here an open-letter to Sarah Palin from my friend Eve Parker
Dear Mrs. Palin,

I recently read about your objection to Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” initiative and the Child Nutrition Act . I am sure this is not the only letter you have received on this matter, but I am deeply concerned with your lack of interest in this issue. As an obese child to a family who were not the most educated or able to provide healthy meals, I relied heavily on my school district to provide me with the nutrients my developing body needed for breakfast and lunch, the two most important meals of the day. I received breakfast pizzas, buttered waffles, chicken fried steak, and corn dogs. Is this the adequate food choices you have been talking about? highlights the obesity rate amongst children which has tripled in the last 30 years. They are expecting to watch this figure grow if no affirmative action is taken. Does this show how well our country is doing by leaving all meal planning in the hands of our parents when clearly children eat at school? According to “Fighting Obesity in the Public Schools,” children ages 6-15 consume one-third to one-half of their daily calories there. If parents are left completely responsible for their children’s food choices, does that honestly allow schools to turn a blind eye and serve children what is proven to clog arteries, increase risk of high blood pressure, and effect cognitive functions?

Wiping your hands clean of this issue since you feel we have bigger issues and assuming all American families are willing and able to provide their children with a well balanced meal is foolish. “Support parental choice for what is best for their children,” sounds like you are playing it safe. Why not intervene and join forces with Michelle Obama when in 2007 researchers from Harvard Medicine School’s showed nearly 1 out of every 5 children are considered either overweight or on their way to becoming obese? Do not assume everyone understands what a serving size is or what an adequate amount of protein is, let alone how much Vitamin A a child needs. I believe too many parents are more concerned with convenience when planning meals rather than the nutrients their children are getting from their diet. I also think it is reasonable to consider child obesity as a form of child abuse, seeing as how disregarding the health and future of your child is neglect. Just because your children didn’t suffer from it doesn’t mean it isn’t happening Mrs.Palin.

If your focus is on the future and making our country optimal and efficient, why do you not care about the future generation and their well being? I can hear your contagious laugh as you read this, but truly that is what you are doing when you scoff at the First Lady’s efforts. Obesity is amongst the top preventable disease affecting our country today. If we do not have healthy children it decreased their chances of being healthy adults, and without healthy adults we do not have a fully functioning society.

I find it sad that a 24 year old Nutrition major has to even write such logic to a well-educated politician. I employ you to reconsider your narrow-minded attitude toward this country’s children. A quote by an unknown author exemplifies the problem with nutritional education “An educational system isn't worth a great deal if it teaches young people how to make a living but doesn't teach them how to make a life.”


Eve Parker
Well said Eve! And thank you for your permission to post this.

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