If you understand anything about vaccines, you know that they don’t cause autism. They just don’t. We don’t know what causes autism. But it’s not vaccines.
But here we go – another study is showing that vaccines do not, in fact, cause autism.
So what pisses me off? Why the fuck are we still studying this?
I don’t blame the scientists for doing so. I mean the anti-vaxx movement keeps coming up with bullshit science to link autism and vaccines in the ultimate game of confirmation bias so someone needs to keep doing actual research to counter the constant barrage of bad information.
Anti-vaxxers crawl out of the shadows every time something like this surfaces because they really want to believe big bad pharma is out to kill us all by ensuring we don’t get polio. It is a pretty sinister plot they have uncovered and the only side effects to being wrong are outbreaks of measles and whooping cough.
The other thing that bothers me is this idea that people with autism are somehow more broken than they would have been had they contracted polio. Rather than treating autism as a challenge to be managed and understood, anti-vaxxers want to believe we can just cure it. The implication that being on the spectrum is worse than dying of a preventable disease is about as bad as suggesting we shouldn’t teach blind people how to read braille because what’s the point?
Unlike flat Earthers, who are just stupid, anti-vaxxers are dangerous. They get people killed. And they divert money from studying how to help people live with autism or from determining the actual cause of autism to more studies about how vaccines don’t cause autism.
Post racist America is alive and well in Rochester Hills, Michigan.
14-year-old Brennan Walker (yes – you read that right – he’s fourteen) missed his bus and he got lost. Sounds pretty scary, right? Not compared to what happened next.
Next, he rang a doorbell to ask directions. The woman who answered the door freaked out and said he was trying to rob them. Because most robbers ring the doorbell.
Her husband grabbed a gun and that’s when Brennan ran. As he was running away, the dude shot at him. Fortunately, he missed or Brennan would be a statistic and his murderers would be claiming they were in fear for their lives to avoid going to jail.
And they probably were.
Because they are racist fucks who freaked out when a black kid came to their door. The guy who shot at Brennan (who was convinced he was a “good guy with a gun”) is facing charges but we all know he’s probably going to get away with it. Because a fourteen year old kid asking for directions was a credible threat.
What’s sad is Brennan’s mom told him this could happen. She warned him that people would be afraid of him because he’s young and black. The warning probably saved his life because he ran away from the murdering racists before they could murder him.
Isn’t it great, though, that the mothers of black young men need to prepare them for situations like this? Because they actually happen?
Jones is a holocaust denier, white supremacist and unapologetic asshole. He’s such a fascist doucebag, his own party has been campaigning against him. They had to because he was unopposed.
He’s running in a heavily Democratic district represented by an anti-abortion Democrat who narrowly won a primary against a far more liberal opponent. He isn’t going to win.
But how the hell did he end up on the ballot? I mean, how is it that nobody noticed this fuck stick needed to have some opposition that was, at least, not quite so publicly racist?
I realize there are congressional districts that are not typically in play but here’s the horror scenario: say the current Democratic nominee turns out to be a sexual predator. You know, like our President.
Since he’s a Democrat, this would mean he could face a considerably tougher campaign and if the decides to stay in the race, suddenly his Republican opponent – a fucking Nazi – could pull an upset. Now, I’m assuming the Republicans would try to field an independent candidate or figure out some other way to keep this yahoo from being elected (that is currently what they are looking to do in the general election).
Still, he’s on the ballot in the R column. Which gives some measure of credibility to his point of view.
And the issues of the Republicans failing to keep this guy off of their ticket aside, twenty thousand people voted for him. He should have gotten one vote. He claims he’d get a vote from his wife but I’m guessing he probably doesn’t think she should have the right to vote.
Maybe a lot of those people didn’t know he was a Nazi. They just voted for the dude with the R next to his name.
So what’s worse, that some of those twenty thousand actually knew what kind of person they were voting for, or some of them would vote for any Republican and don’t even care if he is a Nazi?
Meme that Pissed me Off
I love/hate anti Feminist memes because they are all insufferably stupid. Take this one:
OH SNAP! Clearly the 50’s woman was perfect and the modern woman is completely fucked up! Because that is literally what every modern woman looks like!
Not that it would matter if that was what every modern woman looked like because fuck you and your standard of beauty, oh haters of feminism. Not that the modern woman in this meme has anything to do with feminism.
I mean, I’m pretty sure there are women with shit tons of body piercings who would claim they are not feminists. Also pretty sure there are women who look a lot more like our 1950’s “ideal” who are loud and proud about feminism.
And how do you know the young woman on the right didn’t alter her appearance to please the men in her life just like the woman on the left? Both of them could be sacrificing their own identity. Or, maybe, neither of them are. You don’t know. You just grabbed a couple of pictures off the internet to basically say “damn, I wish women would just shut the fuck up and meet my standards of beauty and decorum because clearly we would all be a lot happier.”
Except maybe women but why the fuck should we care about that?
The article I link to claims it is for certain but it is also on Fox News so who actually knows, right? Still, there is a website and Rock says we should stay tuned for a “major” announcement so, for the sake of this blog post, let’s just assume he’s actually planning on running.
I mean, the Kid (I call him a kid because that is his name) can run. That’s the way of our Democracy. You don’t actually have to be an experienced politician to run for office. You’d think that it might be some sort of problem that someone applying for the job doesn’t have any actual qualifications but in politics, many people consider that a plus.
That is precisely why many of us are forced to say things like “President Trump.” My fingers hurt just typing that.
So Mr. Rock is going to run for the Senate. Probably. Or he’s using the whole thing to help sell his next album (for which I would have grudging respect).
As a musician, I have to say I would appreciate another Senator who is not a lawyer. I’ve always appreciated that Al Franken is the only comedian in the Senate and I’m pleased that I have someone representing my interests.
I’m not sure about Kid Rock, though, and it isn’t just because he’s a conservative. Rather, it is because I don’t think the gives two fucks about anything but himself. And in that, he and Donald Trump have a lot in common.
United Airlines had a fully booked flight but also had several employees who needed transport to where they would be working the next day. They asked passengers to give up their seats for an $800 travel voucher. Nobody volunteered.
Maybe because it was a Sunday night and they all had work the next day. And their boss wasn’t going to pay them for the day off. What a bunch of selfish pricks.
Anyway, rather than upping the offer (which they totally could have done), the airline opted to pick people at random. And one guy didn’t want to go. So they had security drag him off the airline in front of a bunch of cell phone cameras.
As you might imagine, it has been a bad week for United.
But it has also been a bad week for the passenger who was dragged off the plane. As soon as his name became public, news organizations began to dig into his past and it turns out he’s not a perfect person.
I’m shocked to discover that as everyone else I’ve ever met is completely perfect.
His past transgressions have nothing to do with not wanted to be forced to take a different flight after he paid for his ticket and the airline made some poor planning decisions.
The response from a few corners of the internet have been, basically, he deserved it.
Um…no. The guy was violently removed from the plane. Not removed from the plane. Violently removed from the plane.
You can argue all you like how three other people voluntarily left after being randomly selected. Doesn’t matter. Beating people up just isn’t something you should be doing unless they are a Nazi.
And in spite of all the muckraking our media has done over this fellow, they have not been able to turn up any evidence that the guy is a Nazi. So I’m going to say the beating was entirely unjustified.
He didn’t deserve it. That’s the problem with this whole “let’s wait for all the facts to come out” mentality. It doesn’t matter what type of guy he was. It doesn’t matter if he was a little bit belligerent when told he’d have to leave the plane after buying a ticket.
He was violently removed from the plane. He didn’t deserve it. That is the only fact that matters.
Look – as someone who has done a lot of improvisational theater in my life, I have a lot of respect for improvisation.
But Donald Trump feels like an improvisational President. Syrian President Assad uses chemical weapons on his own people and Trump’s first response is “we should do something.”
So everyone responds by saying “yeah – OK – can you be a little more specific?”
And Trump responds by saying “BOOM! Just bombed a military base! How do you like that something?”
And everyone is like “?????”
Never mind that Trump pretended to be a dove on the campaign trail and managed to convince far too many people Hillary Clinton would have us in a war with Syria before she finished her inauguration speech. Never mind that this bombing run did nothing to prevent the next chemical weapons attack on civilians.
In the end, it is military theater. It makes Trump look tough without actually risking anything. Nobody really cares about what is going on in Syria anyway. I mean, we care in the sense that it sounds awful but we don’t care in the sense that it affects our lives in any tangible way.
Kind of like the way that military strike affected the actions of Assad.
Bad Headline Theater
Dear liberal friends. We had a bad election. We are going to have a bad run here and the conservatives are going to do a lot of stuff that makes us angry. At least fifty percent of the time, our anger will be justified.
Some of the time, though, we need to make sure we understand what is making us angry.
Earlier this week, a friend posted this article with the headline “Dino’s Gyros Cans Employee who Took off for ‘Day Without Immigrants’ Protest.”
Now it is true Dino’s Gyros canned an employee who didn’t show up for work and it is true that employee was taking part in the day without immigrants protest. This headline would make you think Dino’s Gyros were Capitalist fucks who didn’t give a shit about causes important to their employees.
And let’s be fair – they may be.
The truth, which we see if we read the whole article, is that they admitted they should not have fired him because he was participating in a legal strike and they offered him his job back with a raise. He turned it down.
Then there is this story which has the headline “Oklahoma Legislature Just Passed the Most Oppressive law Against Women in History.”
In this case, the law in question is pretty horrible. It requires a woman to get permission from the father before she has an abortion, which is some seriously misogynistic bullshit because it takes a woman’s control of her own body away from her.
But – and given the headline this is super important – the law hasn’t passed yet. Later in the article you will read that it has only been passed out of committee.
And believe me, if the legislature actually passes this law as it is written, I’m going to be bringing it up again. And I will find an opportunity to refer to Oklahoma lawmakers as “controlling gibbons who care about the lives and health of women only slightly less than they care about the lives and health of babies once they are born” when that happens.
All the bad laws in the world don’t justify a headline that is demonstrably untrue. In a world where the term “fake news” is used as a weapon, we have to be doubly sure we are precise.
President-Elect Trump (fuuuuuuuuck) tweeted this week that flag burners should go to jail for a year or lose their citizenship. Nothing about how burning the flag is a constitutionally protected right and he just doesn’t like it. No – he thinks people should lose their citizenship if they burn the flag.
While Trump fills his cabinet with individuals who will repeal or cripple the Affordable Care Act (which is sure as fuck going to affect me and my family), we talk about flag burning.
OK, so let’s talk about it. And let’s ditch the “flag burning is a reprehensible act but it is protected” part of the conversation. It’s as if we all need to hold up our hands and protest that we don’t like something because so many people are bothered by it.
And that is what pisses me off. Who gives an actual fuck? Has anyone ever been harmed by the burning of a flag? I mean besides the person burning the flag who might have, you know, gotten a burn because they were holding a burning piece of cloth?
Why have we, as Americans, decided that burning the flag is a despicable act? It’s a flag! A piece of cloth. It is not our country.
That the flag has become a sacred relic is embarrassing. So let me step up and say I don’t have an issue with anyone burning a flag. I’m reasonably certain that a country with enough nuclear capability to turn every other continent into a pile of atomic slag is strong enough to handle a few flags on fire.
I’m sick of the feeling that before we say something (flag burning, abortion, Hillary Clinton) is OK, we have to acknowledge how awful it is.
There is nothing awful about burning a flag. Our freedoms are not irreparably damaged when a flag is set on fire. In fact, our freedoms are enhanced. Burning a flag is an act of defiance but it is also an act of celebration.
It celebrates our right as citizens to openly criticize our government. Have we forgotten how many places on Earth that is not allowed? Is that really what we want here?
If it isn’t, then nobody should say “flag burning is a horrible act.” We should, instead, say “flag burning is a celebration of our constitution.”
And the thing is – this is all a distraction. Flags don’t get burned a lot. In fact, they hardly ever get burned at all. The fact we are talking about something that almost never happens is a ridiculous waste of time.
Our response should be “huh. Someone burned a flag. I wouldn’t even know about this if it weren’t for the 24 hour news cycle.”
Now who the fuck is in Trump’s cabinet again?
In another move meant to remind us how important control of the Supreme Court has become, Oklahoma appears poised to test exactly how far you can go in the control of women’s health decisions.
The state governor has not yet decided whether or not to sign this bill, which goes so far as to tell the state medical board which doctors they can certify.
Rather than targeting the mothers, this law rewards doctors who perform abortions with felony charges. Even if the abortion is required to save the life of the mother.
More and more, it becomes clear that lawmakers on one side of the issue are far more concerned about the next generation than the current one. Unless we are talking about global climate change. Or overpopulation. Or pollution.
Then the needs (or wants) of this generation are far more important.
Unless, of course, they need to go to the bathroom.