Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Just One More Reason Why 'I Love NY!'

In the wake of the "coup" in the New York Senate we are all left with an uneasy feeling that many of our older generation remembers from the days of the mob and 'real' corrupt politics.  In addition many are left wondering what now? What is going to happen with the agenda of the Democratic party?  

One particular bit of legislation comes to mind, that of the gay marriage bill introduced by Governor Paterson not long ago.    We have been lucky enough to see the Assembly again pass the bill with flying colors, but have all been waiting worriedly to see what the Republicans, which held a much stronger minority in the Senate would do with the bill. Now the Republicans have taken over again, and we are left with the question of whether the bill will even make it to the podium to be voted on. While the new president of the Senate, Pedro Espada (one of the two guys who jumped ship) is a co-sponsor of the bill, Dean Skelos (the returning majority leader) is against it. Unfortunately if this quote taken by the Observer Dispatch is anything to go on, we're back on for a long fight, all over again.
“Time spent on issues such as gay marriage would have been better spent on solving the state’s fiscal problems.  Maybe now they can extend the session so they can get some real work done,”
This is a quote from the Oneida County Republican Chairman. This quote is ridiculous all over, but strikes me badly for two main reasons:
  1. It's Funny the Republicans have been in power for 40 years, but the Democrats get blamed for not fixing the state's fiscal policy in the six months that they have been in power. (Admittedly, they weren't doing all that great though.)
  2. (More importantly) I find it slightly absurd that a civil rights vote such as that for gay marriage is considered so unimportant that interrupting further deliberation on a monotonously failing fiscal policy is considered a hindrance to “real work.”
I understand that it is a hard concept to grasp for some people, but there are issues that are more important than money. If we could just get the senators to vote under the basis of equal rights, and remind them that RELIGION and TRADITION should have no part in law, they could actually protect a minority and get back to misusing our tax dollars, and making faux-promises to make things better for tomorrow, before they knew it.
But they're right, who are we New York Citizens to ask for equality? It's all about them right? They're flim flamming around figuring out who's going to be in power, when a minority is continuing to be oppressed against their strong protest for equality.

Shame on you gays, sit down and shut up, we need to be thinking about fiscal policy! Don't you realize we're in a recession?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Where is our Brown vs. Board?

There is no shortage of people who have drawn the parallel between the separate but equal system of the post Civil War era and the current plight of the gay couples being offered civil union which "hold all the same rights and powers as marriage" while withholding actual marriage from them.  If they deserve all the same rights, then why must they be separated?
55 years have passed since "separate but equal" was a legal standard for black and white people.  How is it that any court today could possibly decide against gay marriage while completely barring from their decision making one of the most important and relevant cases the Supreme Court has ever seen?  We need a new Brown vs. Board, and we shouldn't have to wait any longer.
It is quite shameful that Proposition 8 has passed by the 52% majority of California voters, but what is really shameful is the California Supreme Court's 180 degree turn-around in supporting the limit on marriage.  Only last year it was this same court that opened up gay marriage, and now it's Justices don't even stand up in opposition when the door is slammed shut once again.
It was up to the Supreme Court to control the tyranny of the majority, and they failed miserably.
Now we New Yorkers must hope that our State Senators will follow on the coat tails of Vermont, Iowa, Connecticut, and Maine and ignore the sinking of California into the ol' south when deciding our own marriage policy.
I apologize for the spacing, blogger is messing with me today.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Whining about Wine

I am usually very supportive of any measure which tries to break down the barriers that the alcohol industry faces.  Most of these laws are simply out of date and based on old religious customs and really don't have any place in law.

This is not to say that I think it is a good idea to sell alcohol to minors, or that we should not have drinking and driving laws.  The laws which I disagree with are less productive and less sensible, such as the hours in which bars and liquor stores can not operate, and public drunkenness arrests.  It makes no sense to me, a non-Christian, that until just a few years ago the hours in which you could buy alcohol in New York State were limited on Sundays more than any other day.  Should everybody take a rest from drinking once in a while? Yes, but I'm not a big fan of leaving it up to the state or worse, the Christians, to decide when that break should be.

I however am in opposition to the most recent alcohol liberation act that is being passed through the NYS assemblies.  An act that would allow wine to be sold in grocery stores. 

Don't get me wrong, the convenience sounds great, being able to buy beer and wine in the same place would be a plus.  Faster "beer runs," and probably later hours than liquor stores offer, just a better system.  Why haven't we been able to buy wine in a grocery store for all these years anyways?

The problem I have with this is that wine is a very big part of the revenue of liquor stores.  If this new act is passed the vast majority of people are most likely going to settle for convenience and buy their wine from grocery stores, which will cause disaster for liquor stores.

This is a problem because most of these grocery stores are chains based out of 'who-knows-where' and most of the liquor stores are locally owned and operated.  Keeping the law as it stands separating the sale of beer from wine and liquor will protect businesses who's money solely goes to NYS and the counties within it.

Support Mom and Pop, Reject chain employed 15 year olds recommending which semi-sweet red would be best for your cocktail party