The Senate voted Saturday to repeal the U.S. military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," policy toward gay personnel. The controversial policy was established in 1993, and almost from its inception, pleased virtually no-one on either side of the issue.
The vote was 65-31 for repeal, with eight Republican senators eventually voting with the majority. Not surprisingly, both Tennessee senators, Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, voted against the repeal.
From HuffPo: President Barack Obama applauded the Senate for moving toward repeal. "By ending 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,' no longer will our nation be denied the service of thousands of patriotic Americans forced to leave the military, despite years of exemplary performance, because they happen to be gay," he said in a statement. "And no longer will many thousands more be asked to live a lie in order to serve the country they love."
I'm not quite sure how I feel about the legislation covered in this story. It seems the House and Senate have just passed a bill mandating that hybrid cars get noisier.
This seems counter-intuitive to me. Isn't traffic noise one of the plagues of modern life? If cars were silent, we could hear the birds and crickets, even a block from Union Avenue. Lovers could sit at a sidewalk cafe in Manhattan and whisper sweet nothings to each other as the traffic silently passed. You wouldn't have to raise your voice to say something to your friend across the street. There would just be a gentle electric hum in the air.
Oh, I suppose it makes sense to protect the blind with noisier cars. But it seems an odd law to pass. I'm wondering if the actual sound will be mandated, or if different manufacturers will elect to give their vehicles a signature voice. Maybe we'll be able to customize the sound of our vehicles, much as we pick the color now.
I want my new Prius in mocha silver and I want the Wild Goose soundtrack. Wait. No, I've changed my mind. Make it Cicada.
The insane clown posse of churches, Westboro Baptist, is at it again, with its announcement that its members will protest at the funeral of Elizabeth Edwards. They will be carrying signs proclaiming "Thank God for Breast Cancer" "and Elizabeth Edwards is in Hell." Read more here.
Is there any human in the U.S. who would mourn if the bus carrying these sickos went off a cliff on the way to North Carolina?
We need about 50 more senators like this guy. Watch it and remember how politics is supposed to be played.
I came across this tree in the left rough on the fourth hole at Pine Hill golf course this week. (Yes, I have a bit of a duck hook on occasion.) It's an Osage orange, also known as a hedge apple or bois d'arc. Its wood is extremely strong and was used by native Americans to make bows (hence bois d'arc). The fruit is green and wrinkly while on the tree, but in the fall it turns yellow and litters the ground under its branches. It's heavy, and when I was a kid we used hedge apples as "bombs" in our war games. When they get ripe, they soften and "explode" on impact. Very cool.
Fall was a great time for Missouri country boys like me to find nature's weapons. We pulled fireweed stalks from the ground and used them as spears. Walnuts became excellent grenades. Ripe persimmons made for a primitive paintball weapon. Good times. These kids today and their fancy-schmancy transformer X-Box crap. I tell ya ...
I hefted one of these guys at Pine Hill and gave it a shotput heave for old times' sake.
Hey, I bet you're feeling pretty good today. It's sunny, nice, a brisk November breeze in the air. But just think how much better you would feel if you could actually MEET SARAH PALIN and get her to personally sign her book, just for you. Well, a bunch of lucky folks in Nashville got to do just that. Their sincere admiration for Mama Grizzly made me tear up a little. It's touching, really.
Not to mention utterly terrifying.