A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘glbt issues

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

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  • The Dragon’s Tales links to news of remarkably thorough reconstruction of Neanderthal and Denisovan genomes.
  • Eastern Approaches visits eastern Ukraine’s Donbas region.
  • Geocurrents’ Martin Lewis notes that Pakistan still apparently lays claim to the former Muslim-run princely state of Junagadh in Gujarat.
  • Joe. My. God. and Towleroad both note a proposed bill before the Russian parliament that would require the fingerprinting of all HIV-positive people in a national database.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer notes a continuing crisis in the availability of rental spaces in the American housing market, linking it to low-density zoning.
  • Torontoist notes the sad loss of a pet pigeon on Queen Street West.
  • Towleroad notes continuing controversy over the use of the HIV drug Truvada as a prophylactic against infection.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy visits controveries over affirmative action in the United States where different minorities (here, Asian-Americans) have different claims.
  • Window on Eurasia visits the increasingly problematic lot of Crimean Tatars in their Russian-occupied homeland, notes that traditionally pro-Russian Belarus is newly wary of its eastern partner, and quotes from a journalist who predicts catastrophe from a Russian pursuit of empire.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

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  • The Dragon’s Gaze notes that Earth-like planets may need to be in planets with more than one planet, since multiple-planet systems have more circular planets than not. Also, Gliese 667C might not have nearly as many planets as believed.
  • The Dragon’s Tales observes that fracking produces huge amounts of methane and notes that, when Earth has been less than hospitable, life has hidden in a variety of environments.
  • Language Hat explores Ingalric, an alternate-historical English language.
  • Marginal Revolution wonders why New Zealand isn’t richer, concluding in the end that isolation and underinvestment in human capital are key.
  • Strange Maps illustrates how countries don’t spend nearly as much money on foreign aid as some believed, and even spend less–often much less–than their international commitments would have them spend.
  • Towleroad notes increasing persecution of gays in Egypt.
  • Transit Toronto notes the diverse streetcars put on a recent parade in The Beaches.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy’s Ilya Somin is skeptical of arguments regarding illegal immigration which phrase it in terms of law-breaking.
  • Window on Eurasia notes tendentious claims that Tatarstan is unstable, links to criticism of the recent Geneva pact aiming to stabilize Ukraine, suggests that Russia has given up on ethnic coexistence with non-Russians and is now going for irredentism, and links to predictions that immigrants might form a majority of the Russian population in a few decades.

[NEWS] Some Saturday links

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[BLOG] Some Saturday links

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  • blogTO describes Toronto’s Great Fire of 1904.
  • Centauri Dreams and D-Brief react to the discovery of Kepler-186f, The Dragon’s Gaze linking to a paper that models potential climates on the world.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze notes, as does io9, that an Earth-like planet doesn’t need a stabilizing moon to be habitable. If anything, a shifting axis may help a planet avoid ice ages.
  • Eastern Approaches notes that the Czech Republic isn’t getting a Russian corporation to renovate its nuclear power plants.
  • Geocurrents notes the ongoing maritime border dispute between Romania and Ukraine.
  • Language Log notes an example of Chinese characters being used as annotations for Vietnamese script.
  • The Map Room’s Jonathan Crowe links to a copy of the only fantasy literature setting map needed. (The cliches are cringe-worthy.)
  • Marginal Revolution takes note of the ongoing real estate boom in Vancouver.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer notes that Ukraine needs to keep Odessa, not only because of the city’s importance as a coastal port but because of its oil refinery.
  • The Russian Demographics Blog links to a paper analyzing the different kinds of processes of depopulation in European Russia.
  • Towleroad notes that a photo exhibit showing same-sex couples kissing in Catholic churches, closed down in Rome, is now up in New York City.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy notes that it’s quite rare to actually see police officers suffer serious penalties for lying.
  • Window on Eurasia points readers to the writings of Andrey Piontkovsky, who argues that Putin’s push for territorial annexations is more destabilizing (because more uncertain) than the Cold War.
  • Yorkshire Ranter Alex Harrowell observes an uncanny congruence between maps of England showing ancient patterns of Viking settlement and contemporary patterns of areas with benefit cuts.

[LINK] On the affair of John Waters and homophobia

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Some days ago, Joe. My. God. linked to an interview in the Irish Independent with journalist John Waters. Waters, recently the subject of wide criticism across Ireland and the world for homophobic statements, is unhappy that people aren’t happy with his bigoted statements and are saying so.

“I was walking down the street and a guy on a bicycle shouted ‘you f***ing homophobe’ at me before cycling on. I was in a coffee shop on another occasion and a woman waddled over to me with a pram and told me I should be ashamed of myself before walking off. They are cowards, they shout something and keep walking, they don’t want to engage.

“I was frightened almost in a metaphysical way, that people could be so full of hatred. That, in accusing me of hatred, they could manifest a hatred infinitely greater than anything I could possibly imagine.”

[. . .]

Describing the lowest point, he said it was the realisation that no one would speak out in his defence.

“You have a certain hope that somebody, somewhere knows you for who you are, you kind of have some kind of naive hope that one of these people are going to stand up and say ‘hang on, this is wrong, this is not this guy’ and that moment never came.”

[. . .]

In a passionate interview, Waters also defended previous statements he made on gay marriage and adoption which have landed him in hot water.

Questioning gay adoption, he drew parallels with two brothers taking paternal responsibility of a child.

“If two brothers who love each other in a particular way decide ‘we would like to adopt a child’ this society would regard that as an absurdity, they would laugh them out of court.

“Yet if two men who are involved in a sexual relationship go forward to adopt a child we are told now, that should be okay? I find that really hard to understand, intellectually. Why is it that it is okay but it is not okay for two brothers or two straight men? I think that’s a legitimate point.”

He went on to describe as ‘satirical’ the fight to introduce gay marriage, when the core of the traditional family unit remains so broken.

“There is something fundamentally wrong to go off then and to come up with a peripheral issue, which gay marriage is in my view, and to deal with that first, when the raw bloody core of our family law and our family life in this country . . . that is satire. It is a mockery of reality to actually deal with something so peripheral and marginal, when there is such a wound at the heart of our culture. So I make no apologies for calling it a satire. It is satirical.”

He defended his use of the word ‘buggery’, questioning why anyone would take offence to the term.

“People are selectively finding things offensive to suit themselves. But what is so offensive about the word buggery? I mean it’s a phenomenon, it’s a word to describe a physical function. My definition is anal penetration by men. It is very clear what it means. It is a term to describe a physical function, end of story. Why is it offensive? If the act is not offensive to people, why should the word to describe it be offensive?”

Written by Randy McDonald

April 16, 2014 at 8:02 pm

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

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  • 3 Quarks Daily asks whether parenthood is morally respectable.
  • blogTO has vintage photos of Toronto’s neighbourhood of Corktown.
  • Centauri Dreams notes that a small moon may be condensing out of Saturn’s Ring A.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze notes evidence that close-orbiting “hot Jupiters” influence their stars.
  • The Dragon’s Tales notes continuing progress in teasing out evidence of Neandertal ancestry from current populations.
  • Joe. My. God. notes that some Muslim cab drivers in Cleveland refuse to drive cabs with signs advertising the upc9oming Gay Games.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money takes on the minor scandal of Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s non-receipt of a symbolic degree from Brandeis University.
  • Marginal Revolution’s Tyler Cowen seems unduly skeptical about Norway’s program of buying books by local authors for libraries, so as to subsidize literary production.
  • New APPS Blog contrasts the open citizenship of the Roman Republic with the closed citizenship of the Greek city-states, with Carthage being somewhere in between.
  • Towleroad explores continuing controversy around the use of Truvada as an alternative to condoms in HIV/AIDS prevention.
  • Transit Toronto notes the closing of several streets, notably Church Street, in downtown Toronto on the occasion of former Canadian finance minister Jim Flaherty’s funeral.
  • Window on Eurasia notes that contemporary Russians like their country’s open egress to the world and wouldn’t be pleased by transit restrictions, and observes that ethnic Russians in Estonia seem to be mobilizing against Russian annexation.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

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  • blogTO shares a visual history of the Toronto Islands. (I really will have to get there this year.)
  • At Broadside Blog, Caitlin Kelly draws lessons from the experience of a journalist who literally overworked himself to death. When should people note their limits?
  • The Dragon’s Gaze notes that close-orbiting hot Neptune GJ 436b, even with its comet-like tail produced by heating from its sun, isn’t going to lose its atmosphere.
  • Eastern Approaches notes that Poland’s Donald Tusk is presiding over new military spending inspired by the Ukrainian crisis.
  • The Financial Times‘ The World blog and Eastern Approaches both deal with the international consequences of ongoing Russian involvement in eastern Ukraine, the former calling for broad sanctions.
  • Marginal Revolution wonders if the Russian-majority city of Narva in northeastern Estonia will be the next target of Russia.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer discusses the implication of Russian gas price increases for Ukraine.
  • Torontoist notes the impact of CBC’s announced job cuts.
  • Towleroad links to a teaser for the new HBO movie version of The Lonely Heart and reports on Barbra Streisand’s explanation as to why she couldn’t get the movie made.
  • Une heure de peine’s Denis Colombi writes (in French) about the sociology of working hours in France and among the French.
  • Window on Eurasia argues that rising xenophobia in Russia is alienating many non-Russians and reports on one Russia who argues that there isn’t a necessary conflict between liberalism and imperialism.

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

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  • Bad Astronomy’s Phil Plait revisits the skydiver/meteorite video. It looks like it was just a rock in the chute.
  • Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly writes about the benefits of leaving one’s comfort zone.
  • At False Steps, Paul Drye presents the life of Mercury capsule designer Max Faget.
  • A Fistful of Euros’ Doug Merrill warns (1, 2) about the growing scope of Russia’s actions in Ukraine.
  • The Financial Times‘ Gideon Rachman argues that Russia under Putin is trying to destroy the current Ukrainian state.
  • Joe. My. God. notes that the two daughters of Lyndon Baines Johnson think that American president would likely support same-sex marriage based on his principles.
  • At Lawyers, Guns and Money, Scott Lemieux celebrates the defeat of the Parti Québécois as something that would protect religious freedom.
  • Marginal Revolution hosts a discussion in the comments surrounding the economic policies of Narendra Modi, aspirant for the Indian presidency.
  • John Moyer writes about the virtues of revisiting some books (here, James Joyce’s Dubliners).
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer wonders if Russian expansion into Ukraine will encourage imperialism generally and wonders how the ZunZuneo social networking project in Cuba was supposed to prmote democracy.
  • At the Russian Demographics blog, the author notes that Russia stands out not only among European countries but among the BRICs.
  • Window on Eurasia holds that Ukrainian Muslims prefer Ukraine to Russia and argues in favour of a sustained policy of non-recognition of Crimea’s annexation.

[BLOG] Some Tuesday links

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  • The Buffer blog advises online writers as to how often they should post on different media.
  • Centauri Dreams reacts to the discovery of the ocean under Saturn’s moon Enceladus.
  • The Dragon’s Tales notes a recent paper claiming to set limits on a potential distant planet X and observes archeological data suggesting a 9th century settlement date for a Tongan island.
  • Eastern Approaches comments on the Hungarian election.
  • A Fistful of Euros’ Doug Merrill warns that if Russia does move into eastern Ukraine, terrible choices will be afoot.
  • Geocurrents’ Claire Negiar takes a look at the Caribbean island of St. Martin, divided between French and Dutch halves.
  • Joe. My. God. links to an article examining the use of the drug Truvada to prevent HIV infection and notes that Blondie’s Debbie Harry has come out as bisexual.
  • Language Log’s Victor Mair explains what Chinese might mean when they talk about prayer.
  • Towleroad’s Ari Ezra Waldman comments on Brandon Eich’s resignation.
  • Window on Eurasia notes one Russian commentator’s argument that the Baltic States have been lost to the Russian sphere, another noting a fall in anti-Caucasian sentiment in the media as Ukraine heats up.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

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  • Bad Astronomy’s Phil Plait evaluates a video of a skydiver almost hit by a meteroroid and finds it plausible.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a paper suggesting that we don’t know which processes lead to stars and which to brown dwarfs.
  • Language Log’s Mark Liberman notes interesting gendered pronoun usage in a new science fiction novel.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money is not sympathetic towards Brandon Eich and argues that multicultural accomodation isn’t inherently irrational.
  • Marginal Revolution seems to have grudging respect for Michael Lewis’ new book Flash Boys.
  • Towleroad notes the recent statement of Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury and head of the Church of England, that embracing same-sex marriage could inadvertently lead to the persecution and murder of Christians around in the world, particularly in Africa. (One finds one’s allies where one can.
  • At Window on Eurasia, note is made of various arguments: one argues that Russian national identity is synthetic and assimilatory; another argues that, given Ukrainian public opinion, Russia’s only prospects for further expansion lie in force; still another takes note of Eurasianist threats against Azerbaijan.
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