The creeping dictatorship of the Left...

The primary version of "Political Correctness Watch" is HERE The Blogroll; John Ray's Home Page; Email John Ray here. Other mirror sites: Greenie Watch, Dissecting Leftism. This site is updated several times a month but is no longer updated daily. (Click "Refresh" on your browser if background colour is missing). See here or here for the archives of this site.

Postmodernism is fundamentally frivolous. Postmodernists routinely condemn racism and intolerance as wrong but then say that there is no such thing as right and wrong. They are clearly not being serious. Either they do not really believe in moral nihilism or they believe that racism cannot be condemned!

Postmodernism is in fact just a tantrum. Post-Soviet reality in particular suits Leftists so badly that their response is to deny that reality exists. That they can be so dishonest, however, simply shows how psychopathic they are.


31 August, 2016

Is Political Correctness Classist?

It's the language of the political elite, not of the  people

I’ve been thinking recently about political correctness, and specifically the way that many people seem to find it odious and irritating – so much so that Donald Trump’s hideously inappropriate comments seem to make him more, not less, popular with his core voters. The standard left-wing assumption is that basically white men have had the right to behave like insensitive boors for hundreds of years, and that they feel that they are being oppressed if they’re told they can’t be assholes. I’m not going to deny that that’s probably part of the equation, but I think that in some cases there’s something more valid going on.

There’s an interaction that I see over and over again that goes essentially like this:

Person A: (Makes mildly offensive – or worse, offensively stupid – remark)

Person B: (Calls out person A)

Person A: (Gets defensive/Makes a joke/Makes light of it/Calls person B uptight/Reverses the call out/Becomes unreasonably angry)

Person B: (Just can’t. Ugh.)

Just to be clear, I have been person B on more than one occasion. But I’ve been trying to think about what motivates person A. My tentative hypothesis, which I think is probably true in at least some cases, is that the objection to political correctness is not actually so much a knee-jerk defense of racist or sexist attitudes as it is an inarticulate objection to classism.

Classism is problematic, in that every intelligent person on the left knows that it is bad, bad, very bad – but none the less, leftist discourse is constantly, profoundly classist. Discussions of how to end oppression, including the oppression of poor, marginalized, and less educated people, are routinely carried on in language that can’t even by parsed by someone with a high-school reading level. As a theoretical category of social problem, the poor and underprivileged are given great respect. But when an actual person who can’t spell very well, speaks in a regional dialect from a lower-class area, and can’t express himself very articulately tries to argue that he also needs protection from oppression, he’s often dismissed as an “entitled” white man who doesn’t understand the systemic barriers endured by marginalized groups.

Part of the problem is that discussion about classism is well thrashed out in academia, but almost never discussed on the street. So whereas black people are more or less universally aware of the problem of racism, and women are all aware of sexism, and queer people know all about homophobia, lower class people are often not aware that classism is a thing. They’re aware of it as something they experience, but they don’t have a name for it. And without a name for it they can’t effectively call it out.

So they’re left saying things that sound completely incoherent like “You’re the real racist,” when what they actually mean is “What you just did there was publicly shame me for not having the educational background and middle-to-upper class social experience necessary to realize that my behaviour was potentially offensive to educated members of a particular social minority. This behaviour is not offensive, or at least it does not seem to be offensive, to members of the same minority who are also members of my class. Thus your call out is actually an expression of classism, meant to stigmatize and shame me for my lower-class upbringing and lack of education.”

Even if a person was able to articulate this sentiment, calling out classist behaviour is almost impossible because even in leftist circles lower class people, and less educated people, are routinely stigmatized. To say “I only have a high-school education. I work in a factory. That’s why I don’t know the most up-to-date acceptable word for a cripple,” is to invite classist sneering, opprobrium, and contempt (or perhaps a condescending attempt at education) from those who are supposed to be the guarantors of inclusivity.

To rub salt into the wound, slurs that stigmatize low intelligence, poor education, or a lower-class background are considered completely appropriate by almost everyone. “Idiot,” “yokel, “moron,” “boor,” “knuckle-dragger,” “troglodyte,” “ignoramus,” “hillbilly,” “bum,” “trailer trash,” “redneck,” and “mouth breather” are all fair game – and a person who really is genuinely low class, and genuinely not very well educated, is liable to be frequently and repeatedly shamed using these words if they attempt to break into higher level social discourse. This is particularly true if someone who is not of the correct class voices an opinion that is at odds with the consensus of their higher class, educated peers. Such transgressions are usually swiftly punished by collective outrage and mockery.

One of the most common justifications for such social punishment is the appeal to political correctness. I’m not talking here about cases of blatant racism, sexism, etc. but rather about behaviours which only the educated elite realize are inappropriate. In extreme cases, this can include terms or behaviours which are acceptable to the majority of a marginalized group but which are considered offensive by a small minority who are active mostly in academia (the convention that you should say that a person “has autism” rather than saying that they are autistic is a good case in point – especially since many real autistic people adamantly insist that the latter is the non-offensive option.) In such cases, political correctness becomes a weapon in the arsenal of classism. What is offensive is not that the person harbours any genuine racist, sexist, homophobic, ableist, or ethnophobic views, but rather that they don’t know the proper approved behaviour that will allow them admittance into polite society.

Political correctness thus functions as a kind of etiquette and like all etiquette it serves two purposes: first, to smooth the way for conversation by making it mannerly, and second, to systemically exclude the lower classes from serious discourse and positions of power.

Lower class people may not be able to articulate this, but they experience it constantly. It almost certainly drives at least some of their hatred of political correctness, and it may be part of why they cheer enthusiastically every time Trump says something outrageously offensive. Not because they want the right to be assholes, but because they want the right to be included. They want to be able to contribute without constantly being called out for unintentionally transgressing the staggering set of politically correct rules – rules which higher class people learned in their homes, their neighbourhoods, their schools and their universities and which lower class people are expected to learn primarily by being rudely corrected on FaceBook.


The PC terror of the Twittermob

Jon Ronson finds something nasty lurking in the eye of the Twitterstorm

Two web developers, Hank and Alex, were sharing tech-related in-jokes about ‘dongles’ and ‘forking someone’s repo’ at a conference. It was private, jokey wordplay – or at least, that’s what they thought. A woman in front of them, Adria Richards, overheard the jokes, became outraged, took a photo of the pair, and posted it on her Twitterfeed. ‘Not cool’ ran the tweet as she ‘called out’ their ‘inappropriate’ and ‘sexist’ jokes. At the end of the conference, they were reprimanded by the conference organisers and eventually sacked from their jobs. It didn’t end there. The woman who tweeted her outrage received abuse from freelancing misogynists who themselves were outraged by the firing of Hank and Alex. Hackers attacked the IT server system at Richards’ workplace and she, too, was sacked.

It is a grim story, but it is one that, unfortunately, is becoming commonplace. Author and broadcaster Jon Ronson, in his new book So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed, examines the peculiar twenty-first-century phenomena of the Twitterstorm and ‘calling out’ culture. Ronson is a very good and likeable journalist. He has a talent for spotting a potentially great story and the tenacity to bring it to life. He is a journalist in the old-fashioned sense of the word. He pursues contacts, leads and interviews – many times over – until he’s scooped a decent story. And, unlike so many hotshot broadsheet writers, Ronson is always more interested in the people he’s writing about than he is in himself. It is this approach which means his contacts are often prepared to open up to him and which explains why his writing can be so compelling.

Ronson, though, has his detractors. His interest in oddballs and freaks suggests he is not someone who takes things too seriously. Yet his eye for the wacky and the strange sometimes ends up hitting on hard political topics. For example, his 2001 documentary, The Secret Rulers of the World, captured how radical lefties were embracing conspiracy theory, once the theory of choice for far-right nutters. Likewise, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed captures how the easily offended, often radically minded, have wrecked people’s lives in a manner which would make corrupt, repressive states feel proud. What’s alarming and chilling about Ronson’s case studies is that, far from being isolated incidents, they increasingly reflect a general trend towards the curtailing of free expression.

Take the case of the American, Justine Sacco. Before a trip to South Africa, she made a throwaway quip on Twitter, to her 170 followers, about how white people can’t catch AIDS in Africa. This bad joke was a dig at her own apparently cosseted existence rather than at black AIDS suffers. But sadly for Sacco, this joke was lost on one of her followers (she doesn’t know who), and by the time she had landed at Cape Town Airport she was trending on Twitter. Ronson provides an extensive list of the tweets in response to Sacco’s original post. They were a mixture of pious, indignant rage and low-level sadism. ‘We are about to watch this @JustineSacco get fired. In REAL time. Before she even KNOWS she’s getting fired.’ Ronson makes the point that Sacco was the first person he’d interviewed who had been destroyed, not by the government or big business, but by her fellow citizens.

The same was true of Lindsey Stone. She and a friend had a long-running ‘stupid joke’ that involved pulling poses contrary to what a public sign says, such as smoking in front of a no-smoking sign. At Arlington in Washington DC, the pair saw the ‘silence and respect’ sign for US soldiers who had died in combat - this prompted Lindsey to do a goofy am-dram one-finger salute pose in front of the sign. Due to Facebook settings not being as private as many of us think they are, especially for uploaded photos, this private joke became public. Four weeks after returning from Washington DC, Stone became aware of online hostility towards her and her photo. Incredibly, a ‘Fire Lindsey Stone’ Facebook page had been created and had attracted 12,000 likes. The company Lindsey worked for, LIFE (Living Independently Forever), was inundated with emails demanding her sacking – a request that was quickly met. According to Ronson, Stone ‘fell into a depression, became an insomniac and barely left home for a year’.

Public shaming in the twenty-first century, especially for mildly jokey rather than criminal behaviour, can be devastating for its victims. Ronson, who admits that he’s done his fair share of ‘calling out’ tweets, is right to say the process degrades us all. A harder question to answer is why such unhinged responses to bad jokes and legitimate opinions have become the norm rather than the exception.

In trying to answer this question, it would be easy, and wrong, to indulge in anti-human prejudices, and to his credit Ronson picks apart such lazy theories. He demonstrates how the nineteenth-century French doctor and thinker, Gustave Le Bon, was wrong with his ‘group madness’ concept, developed in The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind. Le Bon’s theory was that humans totally lose control over their behaviour in a crowd. Our free will evaporates and a contagious madness takes over.

Ronson notes that Le Bon is still popular because ‘we tend to love nothing more than to declare other people insane’. But the problem with theories like Le Bon’s is that they can’t explain why some people get involved in Twitterstorms and others choose not to. It seems that how people react in a crowd or on social media is based on patterns of behaviour that reflect wider belief systems. The predilection to behave in this way exists prior to the coming together of any pitchfork- or Twitter-wielding mob.

For the sociologist Émile Durkheim, the process of punishment and shaming served to change an individual’s behaviour and uphold society’s values. From Medieval times through to the nineteenth century, the authorities were willing to tie people to public whipping posts or place them in stocks for their transgressions. Local newspapers would have published a digest detailing the amount of squirming that had occurred. Punishment is primarily expressive – it expresses society’s moral outrage at the offence. Through rituals of order, such as a public trial and punishment, society’s shared values are reaffirmed and its members come to feel a sense of moral unity. Thus ‘calling out’ someone’s Twitter transgressions could be said to be motivated by a desire to do good for wider society. Ronson draws a not too far-fetched analogy between public shaming on social media and how citizens in the German Democratic Republic (GDR) informed the Stasi (the GDR’s terrifying secret police) on their neighbours – they thought this was the right thing to do.

The question today is how and why harmless jokes, or the ‘wrong’ opinions, are seen as transgressive and worthy of what the criminologist John Braithwaite calls ‘stigmatic shaming’ (which means there’s no final forgiveness for the individual’s ‘bad behaviour’). But in the twenty-first century the nature of stigmatic shaming has changed, too. Ronson notes how individuals who have been exposed to public judgement for aspects of their sexual behaviour, such as sleeping with prostitutes, are no longer social pariahs. Max Mosley or Wayne Rooney, for instance, were not cast out of public life following tabloid revelations of their paid-for sex romps. Shaming no longer involves the transgression of traditional or religious values but, instead, the transgression of politically correct codes. And it is on social media where the regulatory power of PC codes is most keenly felt.

Twenty-five years ago, the term PC was a joke, largely used by conservatives to lampoon the behaviour of liberals and lefties. Today, far from PC having ‘gone mad’, it has gone thoroughly mainstream. Critics of PC are often viewed as closet bigots, people who simply want to make racist or sexist comments without any comeback. But this misses the point about the problems with PC. PC is designed to control individual behaviour rather than create a more equal or fair society. Through PC, problems to do with racial or sexual inequality have been recast as problems of language etiquette. Justine Sacco’s family, for instance, had a long history of actively supporting the ANC in South Africa during the struggle against Apartheid; her tweet was also a joke against herself and perceptions of ‘white privileged’ Americans. But all of this was irrelevant because the politically correct use of language is considered more important than a person’s actual opinions or deeds.

Protecting other people’s self-esteem or emotional states has become important because humans are no longer seen as being able to cope with ‘disagreeable’ words. This has pretty much become the organising principle on university campuses throughout Britain and America. But the culture of limiting ‘offence’ has only encouraged people to perceive and exaggerate all manner of comments as ‘offensive’. We’ve reached the point where an individual’s subjective ‘hurt’ now triumphs over solidarity with other people. Indeed, solidarities based around work, how most of us are only one pay cheque away from penury, was once a powerful social bond among the powerless in society. It was widely recognised that handing employers a stick with which to beat an employee could be used against yourself and others. This is why, 30 years ago, nobody would call on someone else to be sacked from their job on the basis of something they had said, no matter how reprehensible they thought it was.

One of the most depressing trends covered in Ronson’s book is how calling for someone to be sacked from their job, even though a tweet is unrelated to their work, is often the first demand social-media users all-too gleefully make. It shows just how atomised and lacking in solidarity Western societies have become. Trying to get someone sacked was once considered a terrible thing to do. Now it is considered the right thing to do. Ronson’s book demonstrates how social media reflects and exacerbates such malignant trends, such as calling for the state or employers to punish people for opinions, jokes or beliefs considered offensive or inappropriate.

Nevertheless, Ronson is somewhat off the mark when he applies his criticism of public, social-media shaming to the case of author and ‘motivational public speaker’ Jonah Lehrer. In 2012, journalist Michael C Moynihan became suspicious of quotes Lehrer had attributed to Bob Dylan in his book Imagine: How Creativity Works. In fact, the quotes were completely made up. Other editors and book publishers quickly discovered that most of Lehrer’s articles and work featured fabrications, inaccuracies and evidence of plagiarism. Ronson uses the case of Lehrer as part of his exploration of public shaming, but actually it’s not entirely legitimate to compare Lehrer’s downfall with the cases of Sacco, Stone and others. In Lehrer’s case, it was a journalist, and then social media, who forced Lehrer to be held to account for his dishonesty and fakery. He was not being destroyed for bad jokes or bad opinions.

Ronson feels uneasy that Lehrer had ‘been exposed by the sort of person who used to be powerless’ and reminds the reader Lehrer had written some wonderful stuff. There’s a danger here of confusing Twittermob intolerance with stinging public criticism and ridicule. Increasingly, many journalists are hostile to ‘below the liners’, ordinary members of the public who leave ridiculing comments underneath an opinion piece or review. There’s a tendency to confuse the online public who are simply opinionated with Twittermobs and intolerance. Ronson is right to cast a weary and critical eye over the Twittermob mentality. But journalists’ views and opinions still ought to be fair game for challenge and ridicule. At times, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed doesn’t clearly make the distinction between robust public debate and intolerance.

It is also worth pointing out that shame and being shamed are not necessarily bad things. The existence of shame is a recognition that genuinely transgressive acts are problematic. Shaming, therefore, provides a check and balance on wayward behaviour. It is the mechanism through which, informally and organically, civilised boundaries are maintained by society. It is also less repressive because such informal controls do not involve the state and the judiciary. What makes the Twittermob’s acts of ‘shaming’ so brutal is that individuals who haven’t done anything wrong end up having their lives destroyed. Telling bad-taste jokes does not warrant being given unemployable pariah status. Ronson’s engrossing book, and the sorry tales he covers, is a depressing snapshot of Twitter’s tyranny of intolerance and the closing down of a free society.


Anti-Semitism of the progressive churches

Hal G.P. Colebatch, writing from Australia

One of the nastiest perversions of Christianity in the world today – the attempted demonisation and isolation of Israel –has been carried out by, among other bodies religious, a German Protestant Church, under, naturally, the World Council of Churches.

One would think a German church, of all things, would hesitate before sticking a toe in the filthy pool of anti-Semitism. Anyway, its Australian equivalents are some way but not all that far behind.

The WCC and liberation theology in general, Catholic and Protestant, have been singing a bit smaller since the fall of the Soviet Union, but are still with us, with hatred of Israel replacing their previous leit-motif of anti-anti-Communism, while their attitude to the almost daily Islamic atrocities remains conciliatory,

Australian academic Bill Rubinstein, writing in last October’s Quadrant, pointed out that attacks on Israel and ‘Christian Zionism’ (ie pro-Israel evangelical churches) have become the No. 1 cause of progressive churches in much of the Western worlds, in some cases trumping even homosexual marriage.

Rubinstein comments ‘the Presbyterian Church of the USA is simply obsessed with its deep hostility to Israel. Not towards, say, Saudi Arabia, where no Christian may set foot.’ In North Africa Boko Haram and other Islamic groups murder Christians wholesale – the Christian death-toll may be in six figures for the last few years -without a word of reproof from liberal clerics. The WCC’s silence is as loud now as was its silence during the Cold War regarding the Soviet Gulag.

The same double standards prevail in the equivalent Australian churches, particularly sections of the Uniting Church which attack Israel ceaselessly, but say virtually nothing about the murderous intolerance of the Islamic countries and societies or Islamc terrorism in the West.

The Palestine Israel Ecumenical Forum (PIEF) of the WCC invited member churches and civil society organisations to join together in 2014 for a week of anti-Israel advocacy and action. PIEF supports the virulently anti-Semitic BDS movement, aimed at marginalising and de-legitimising the State of Israel, and ignores the atrocities committed by Palestinians against Israelis. Isis likewise does not seem to appear on the progressive Christian radar, despite crucifying Christian girl captives who refuse to convert.

Either spontaneously or in obedience to the diktats of the WCC, the Uniting Church in Australia has placed a ‘prayer for peace’ online which, while trying at first to give an impression of even-handedness, contains the unprayerful words: ‘In July, 2011, the Uniting Church in Australia Assembly Standing Committee resolved, on behalf of the Assembly, to join the boycott of products produced in the illegal Israeli Settlements within the Palestinian Territory of the West Bank.’

The WCC helped publish a book Christians and Muslims: The Dialogue Activities of the World Council of Churches and their Theological Foundation which demands the West ‘abandon its pro-Israeli attitude.’ The latest clerical anti-Israel campaign turns upon allegations that it is stealing ‘Palestinians’’ water. To a student of religious history it may bear some resemblance to the medieval anti-Semitic libel of Jews poisoning water.

On Ash Wednesday, the WCC and its subsidiaries launched a campaign, ‘Seven Weeks for Water’ at a (German) Lutheran Church in Jerusalem, with anti-Israel activists in attendance, including someone called the Co-Coordinator of the Ecumenical Water Network (an absence of a sense of the ridiculous in its titles is one of liberation theology’s distinguishing characteristics). Israeli sources say there is a ‘water crisis’ in Arab areas but that this is due to backward agricultural methods, wastage, and failure to provide adequate infrastructure. This was also the impression I received when visiting. Israel leads the world in dry-land farming techniques.

There is also the question of how far the Palestinian Arabs’ own leaders are responsible for keeping their own people as ‘victims’ for international propaganda.

Something called the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace (PJP – how quickly one gets lost in the jungle of acronyms!), was launched in 2013 by the WCC Assembly.The Ecumenical Water Network (EWN), in 2008. The WCC’s press center advertised its Seven Weeks for Water campaign as a ‘pilgrimage of water justice in the Middle East, with specific reference to Palestine.’

Meanwhile, a woman Member of the Palestine Legislative Council, Abu Bakr, has been sheltering within the council building in Ramallah since President Abbas ordered her arrest. Her crime? Blowing the whistle on the financial corruption of a cabinet minister closely associated with the President. She claims that the minister has been privately selling water to Palestinians and has illegally taken more than $200,000 from the Palestinian budget. There has not, of course, been one word about this from the WCC.

The WCC, associated ecumenical movements, and the web of organisations and relationships between them defy an organisational chart, or accountability, unlike government corporations which are, in Western countries, subject to parliamentary or other scrutiny, or private corporations which must publish balance-sheets and be accountable.

The PJP and the EWN are closely interlinked. The intent of launching the Seven Weeks for Water campaign was made plain by General Secretary of the WCC, Rev Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, in his Jerusalem church sermon: ‘As the WCC’s Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace is focused on issues of the Middle East, particularly in this year, we hope your stories and struggle for justice and peace will become the stories and struggle for the churches around the world. May this Lenten season help us to reflect on these issues more deeply. May the Seven Weeks for Water during this Lent help us to highlight the water crisis in Palestine …’

Mr Dinesh Suna, the Coordinator of the EWN wrote on his Facebook page: ‘The IRG meeting of the WCC’s PJP started today at Bethlehem. To set the tone of the discussion we went to listen to stories of struggle to end occupation of Palestine by Israel’ (‘Struggle’? Suicide bombings, perhaps? Knifings of women and children?). ‘It was quite a touching moment for us to hear these stories…’

Any doubt whose side the WCC and the progressive churches are on now? While the progressive churches are losing membership hand-over-fist, in Australia, America and Europe, the demographically young, and very often pro-Israel, evangelical churches, are flourishing. The formation of the Australia-Israel Association in WA in 2014, held at an evangelical church, drew an overflow crowd.  [Real Christians love Israel]


America’s Twenty Immigration Winks

America seems unable to have an intelligent conversation about immigration. In 1986 after over a decade of work, we finally passed immigration law reform. Senator Al Simpson of Wyoming, the Senate leader that got the legislation passed, told me he hoped we understood the enforcement part of the law is more important than the forgiving (amnesty) part of the law.

No such luck. We still remain stuck in a nation with virtual open borders pushing diversity and multiculturalism in an age of terrorist jihad absolutely oblivious to what is now happening to Europe. And our media brethren remain congenitally unable to be honest about the issues we face.

Ironically, forty years ago we almost got it right. The New York Times wrote about the then forthcoming immigration commission report and the hope for reform: "How can one seriously argue whether to increase legal immigration by 80,000 or 250,000 when maybe 6 million illegal aliens are already here and thousands more are coming daily? There can be no sensible policy without the means to enforce it." They continued: our overall immigration policy amounted to a great "big wink"-or the big pretend-a combination of minimally protecting the borders but largely doing nothing once people got into the country.  

Let us examine some basics.

Half a million people overstayed their visas last year. We have no law enforcement method to determine where these people are or who they are. So says the immigration policy directors in the US government. Wink number one.

According to Congressional hearings, the US immigration authorities have deliberately let out of custody thousands of convicted felons, many of them guilty of violent crimes such as rape and murder, and not deported them, as required by law. Wink number two.

Yes it is wonderful some policy makers want to deport convicted violent felons who are also criminal aliens. But what the commentariat has missed is that these people first have to come here to America illegally, then commit a violent felony, then be apprehended and arrested, then convicted and only then deported. Why not stop them from coming into the country in the first place at the border? Wink number three.

We have more than 300 sanctuary cities, counties and states. Violent felons, criminal aliens, finish their prison sentences but the Federales are not notified so these dangerous people can be deported. They get out of jail free and often end up murdering and raping American citizens again. Wink number four.

The arrogant ruling class says they need little people to mow their laws and wash their restaurant dishes. And people from outside the country that can work off the books, avoid taxes, and allow Americans that should be doing those jobs sit home, join gangs, drop out of school, smoke dope,  eat bon bons, watch television and yes, have babies out of wedlock. Anyone ever hear of welfare reform and work requirements? Wink number five.

Those here illegally can not only work off the books (that's illegal) but send their children to our public schools (which is legal) where we will (to be compassionate and multicultural) teach them in any number of languages (see California) at a cost to the Federal, state and local governments of $12,000-$14,000 a year just for school. (Camden New Jersey exceeds $25,000 and California averages $18,000). We pay and they don't. As Victor Davis Hanson explains we are the only successful multiracial society-E Pluribus Unum-- because we have been bound by a common language, culture and values. Wink number six.

We won't enforce the immigration laws we have. While I watched incredulously after testifying on immigration at the Maryland State House, one local Maryland state legislator told Mexican television just outside the hearing room: "There are no illegal aliens in America there are just people adjusting their status". Wink number seven.

We not only won't enforce our immigration laws we will demand that the border patrol take "dreamers" or "unaccompanied minors" and transfer them to social service agencies to settle in America. But the border patrol are highly trained law enforcement professionals who both Presidents John Kennedy and Dwight Eisenhower used to escort young black students when integrating our schools. Use them for what we should be doing-protect the border. Wink number eight. When asked whether we should have an intelligent discussion of what immigration policy in America should be, do not under any circumstances reference the 1965 immigration law debate where the chief sponsors insisted the new law would not change "our primary European background".

Don't admit the new emphasis on family connections in the 1965 law deprived the American people of the ability to decide which people with which skills would be allowed to come to America or what has been described as a "transfer of policy control from the elected representatives of the American people to individuals wishing to bring relatives to this country." And as National Review correctly explained, don't bring up that prior decades long limits on the practice of importing labor to break strikes and compress wages helped create the American middle class.

Declare such discussions racist and demand that we move on, and ignore that open border enthusiasts such as La Raza and Univision insist that only certain ethic groups be favored in immigration flows because after all we all want "America to become Mexico". Wink number nine.

When confronted with the overwhelming evidence that a major strain within Islam is violent and seeks with terrorist tactics to impose shariah law on the countries where they live, claim Islam has "nothing to do" with terrorism, that Islam is a "religion of peace" and say it's just bigotry that seeks to prevent potential Islamic jihads from terrorizing America. "Radical extremists" are never Muslims. Wink number ten.

When asked what these people are being radical or extreme about, move on to the next question. Can't possibly be radical or extreme about Islam now can they? Is it vegetarianism? Even though the Islamic conquests began when Mohammed was well, conquering. But it has nothing to do with Islam. [And if you criticize the prophet we will cut your head off.] As former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich asked "How can you have an open borders policy in the age of international terrorism"? Indeed. Wink number eleven.

Make anti-bigotry and anti-racism as the watch word for and open borders immigration policy but avoid any questions whether current immigration policy that shows a preference to certain ethnic groups is itself racist. Wink number twelve.

Amnesty is of course the only desirable course for all 11 million aliens here, and well, even if it's 20 million. Avoid certain questions such as "How will you vet these people?" Or "Where are they going to get the income to pay all those back taxes we were assured they were not avoiding because they couldn't possibly be working off the books because they are all law-abiding?" Wink number thirteen.

Demand that all immigration policy come down to only the single question of whether all people now here illegally get to stay in America-amnesty-or whether you are going to support Nazi like "mass deportations". Wink number fourteen.

Avoid all questions about actually enforcing immigration and employment law-E-Verify, employer sanctions, a work requirement for welfare reform, tax avoidance scams. All if actually enforced reasonably would result in a very significant number of those here illegally going home but don't examine that question. Years ago when claiming the outflow of illegal aliens in America going home equaled the number of illegal aliens crossing our borders, the administration said the phenomenon of "self-deportation" was responsible. Avoid that topic as well, go back to the default "mass deportation" verbal racket. Wink number fifteen.

Pretend that amnesty has to be everyone or no one, compassion or evil. Don't examine whether AFTER a new immigration enforcement system, including E-Verify and employer sanctions, after a work requirement in re-instated and welfare reform is on the books, after a moratorium is in place on immigration and refugee flows from states that sponsor terrorist groups, we can then take a look at people wishing to stay in America on a case by case basis under criteria carefully vetted and examined by Congress and the American public. Instead insist amnesty has to be up front and the first and only thing you do. Wink number sixteen.

You have to replace your roof. But it can be fixed. And a huge thunderstorm is coming that day.  The contractor says let's take the roof off and in a week we can have a beautiful new roof in place. And you ask whether in the meantime the rest of the house will be flooded and ruined if the storm takes place. And the contractor again shows you pictures of a beautiful roof. Ignore that the number of illegal aliens arrested at the border from terror sponsoring states increased to 462 in 2015 alone, from 255 in 2011. Wink number seventeen.

When you dramatically increase the production of marijuana in America, pretend the Mexican cartels cannot read the papers and thus understand basic supply and demand economics. Pretend they didn't quadruple heroin production and drive the price of smack to below that of on the street prescription drugs. And pretend that the heroin isn't coming across our border brought here by criminal drug gangs-these people are just adjusting their status, remember? And pretend we do not have a heroin epidemic and it's not related at all to open borders. Wink number eighteen.

Be aghast at anyone who will suggest we build a wall. Deny the Israelis successfully built a wall of over 700 kilometers and that it cut suicide bombings and terrorist attacks by some 85%. Don't admit the cost is $2 million a mile and for $4 billion the US could do the same over the 2000 mile long southern border. And deny that adding border patrol agents and other surveillance equipment to the border would dramatically improve our ability to stop the flow of gangs, criminal aliens, drug traffickers, and coyote smugglers-don't talk about it. Remember its racists to insist that our national sovereignty allows us to say to potential immigrants both "Yes" and "No". Walls around the compounds of the liberal rich and famous are for protection. Walls on your border are racist. Wink number nineteen.

And finally, act shocked that anyone would be so callous to suggest a wall be built and actually paid for by those benefitting from hundreds of billions in remittances and free education received over the past 45 years. For only one million children costing $10 billion a year for school is a net $400 billion cost to US taxpayers since the Supreme Court decision requiring America to provide schooling for children here illegally. Take the 600,000 barrels of refined petroleum products we send to Mexico every day and add a small $7.50 surcharge. That comes to $1.6 billion a year. The wall is paid for in two and one-half years. But don't discuss this. Call everyone a racist. Wink number twenty.   



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


30 August, 2016

Multiculturalist told 2-year-old to `put up his hands' and fight before beating him to death

The fight began with a mother and her boyfriend arguing over groceries.

At some point, prosecutors in Camden County, N.J., say, the woman's 2-year-old boy became upset that 24-year-old Zachary Tricoche had pushed his mother and began to cry, according to the Courier-Post.

That's when Tricoche attacked, prosecutors say, punching the 29-pound boy so hard that the toddler was launched into a wall, Camden County Assistant Prosecutor Christine Shah said at a court hearing last week, according to NJ.com.

Then, Shah said, Tricoche instructed the 36-inch-tall toddler to "put his hands up," meaning "that he should form a boxing stance to fight this full-grown man," NJ.com reported.

At that point, Tricoche hit the boy again, "causing J.B. to again strike his head on a wall and rendering him unconscious," Shah said, according to the Courier-Post.

Both punches struck the boy - identified as Jamil Baskerville Jr. - in his torso, according to CBS affiliate WFMY.

The child's mother called 911 around 11:30 p.m. Saturday and said her toddler was unconscious, the station reported.

Citing a probable-cause statement, the Courier-Post reported the desperate rush to save the child's life:

"My boyfriend is, like, trying to get him to wake up," said the mother, who became distraught as the 911 call continued.

She mentioned bruising to the boy's chest, saying, "It's turning color," but did not refer to any alleged assault.

"He has vomit coming out his nose and mouth," the mother told the 911 dispatcher, who had already dispatched emergency responders. "Can you please hurry up?"

Tricoche, who lived at the home, took the phone at one point to receive directions on administering CPR to the child.

About 30 minutes after that phone call - after the boy had been transported to Cooper University Hospital - he was pronounced dead, WFMY reported.

A medical examiner would later determine that the child's liver has been crushed by the blows, leading him to bleed to death internally, WFMY reported. The station reported that "the official cause of death is blunt force trauma and the manner of death is homicide."

Tricoche, of Pennsauken, N.J., is facing murder charges, according to the New York Post. He was arraigned in Camden County Superior Court on Tuesday and remains in Camden County jail on a $1 million cash bail, the paper reported.

"Tricoche only spoke in court to say that he understood the charges, to tell the judge how to pronounce his last name, and to say that he had a public defender," NJ.com reported, noting that he didn't name the lawyer and appeared alone at the hearing.

Shah said Tricoche has a lengthy criminal history that includes a juvenile conviction for conspiracy to distribute narcotics and several adult convictions, NJ.com reported. In 2011, the outlet reported, he was convicted of distributing drugs in a school zone, which led him to serve a three-year prison term. In 2014, Tricoche was convicted of loitering to obtain a controlled substance, NJ.com reported.

At Tricoche's arraignment, Gerome DeShields, the child's grandfather, told reporters that there was no excuse for a man to attack a child, according to the Courier-Post.

"You're less of a man to sit there and put your hands on any type of child, no matter what age it is," DeShields said. "He was 2 years old. There should be no reason you should want to hit him."


Church of England parishes consider first step to break away over sexuality

A group of parishes is preparing what could be the first step towards a formal split in the Church of England over issues such as homosexuality, with the creation of a new "shadow synod" vowing to uphold traditional teaching.

Representatives of almost a dozen congregations in the Home Counties are due to gather in a church hall in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, later this week for the first session of what they say could eventually develop into an alternative Anglican church in England.

Organisers, drawn from the conservative evangelical wing of Anglicanism, say they have no immediate plans to break away - but are setting up the "embryonic" structures that could be used to do so if the established church moves further in what they see as a liberal direction.

The new alliance will be viewed as a "church within a church" but founders have not ruled out full separation if, for example, the Church of England offers blessing-style services for same-sex unions - a move expected to be considered by bishops in the next few months.

Differences over sexuality have already triggered a major rift in the 80 million-strong worldwide Anglican Communion and formal splits in the US and Canada after the ordination of openly gay bishops, which traditionalists say goes against the teaching of the Bible.

Congregations from three dioceses - Rochester, Canterbury and Chichester - are to become founder members of the new grouping, which does not yet have a name, but they expect others to join.

They claim the Church of England's leadership is progressively "watering down" centuries-old teaching, not just over the issue of sexuality but many core beliefs including the authority of the Bible.

Top of their agenda will be discussing founding new "Anglican" congregations in England - with or without the blessing of the Church's hierarchy.

Crucially, they may decide to withhold money from the offering plates in their dioceses, instead channelling funds towards finding their own "missionary" plans.

And they are likely to consider joining forces with an existing network of congregations outside the Church of England with links to a powerful alliance of Anglican bishops overseas, particularly in Africa.

If senior leaders of the Church of England water down the teaching of the Church of England on key issues like homosexuality then this synod could easily evolve into a new Anglican jurisdiction in England

It came as the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby spoke of being "constantly consumed with horror" at the Church of England's treatment of gay and lesbian people.

During a session at the Greenbelt Christian festival over the weekend, a gay audience member asked the Archbishop when, if ever, the church would be in a position to bless their civil partnership.

The Rev Dr Peter Sanlon, Vicar of St Mark's Church in Tunbridge Wells, who is hosting this week's meeting, said: "If senior leaders of the Church of England water down the teaching of the Church of England on key issues like homosexuality, then this synod could easily evolve in to a new Anglican jurisdiction in England.

"The Archbishop of Canterbury has signalled that he is aware of the possibility that a significant proportion of the church will not accept a change in the church's teaching.  "This could be the beginning of that playing out."

He added: "I am not leaving the Church of England - but in order to stay, I need new partnerships and structures to discharge the mission of the Church of England, which is to bring the message of Christ to every postcode in England.

"We have set these structures up in a very small embryonic form across three dioceses.

"My only problem now is coping with the number of clergy contacting me wanting to know how they can join in."

The Telegraph understands that so far 11 local Parochial Church Councils (PCCs) have scheduled debates on a motion upholding a traditionalist creed-like statement known as the "Jerusalem Statement" and taken part in a new "Anglican synod of churches" committed to upholding it. Of those, five have passed the motion, and six others are due to.

Some evangelicals believe the Church is moving away from its Christian foundation itself. Eyebrows were raised earlier this year, for example, when it emerged that York Minister had introduced a Zen Buddhist meditation group.

Dr Sanlon added: "Clergy like me are not going to just leave the Church of England. However, we need new structures to establish new churches to fulfil the mission that the Church of England ought to be discharging.

"My overriding concern is to see the mission of the Church of England effectively discharged: the partnerships to do that are not possible between churches which promote ambiguity about teaching on sexuality."

The Rev Canon Dr Gavin Ashenden, a royal chaplain, said: "The energy behind this new jurisdiction comes from a growing perception that the CofE is so desperate to remain chaplain to a country that is turning its back on Christian ethics, that there comes a point when it fails to be faithful to Christ and in particular his teaching on marriage.

"At that point, and it may already have arrived, there will be a rupture and the orthodox will make arrangements to safeguard the integrity of the Church for the future."

A spokesman for the Church of England said a recent process of "shared conversations" involving bishops, clergy and laity would lay the foundations for "further formal discussions" about sexuality in the Church of England.


Germany stabbing: Knifeman 'shouts Allahu Akbar' as he attacks couple at music festival leaving wife fighting for life

The two victims - a 66-year-old woman and a 57-year-old man - were attacked but managed to overpower the man who was then arrested by police in Oberhausen

A couple at a German music festival have been attacked by a knifeman who witnesses claim was heard shouting "Allahu Akbar".

A 66-year-old woman, believed to be the other victim's wife, is said to be fighting for her life.

The other victim - a 57-year-old man - is seriously injured however he still managed to overpower the man who was then arrested by police officers in Oberhausen.

The attack took place just after 7pm on Saturday evening.

Police officers say the suspect is a 26-year-old from Duisburg, Germany. In a statement, police said the suspect was "apparently under the influence of narcotics".

Officers say they have also recovered a weapon from the scene.

German media reported that the suspect is homeless.

The phrase "Allahu Akbar" means "God is Great" and has been chanted by Islamic terrorists during attacks. However officers are yet to confirm a motive for the attack.

The country has been on high alert for months and has suffered a spate of chilling attacks.

In July a 17-year-old Afghan refugee seriously injured five people with a knife and hatchet on a train near Würzburg in Germany. The attacker was shot dead when he attacked police officers


Why do we need an obesity strategy?

Our waistlines are none of the government’s business

As long-awaited as a bus in a rural village, the government’s new childhood obesity strategy was finally published last week. The response was a wall of wailing campaigners, who accused the government of weakness and even of kowtowing to big business – despite the fact that the strategy confirms plans to impose a 20 per cent tax on sugary drinks and pressure food manufacturers into reducing sugar content by 20 per cent over the next four years. To anyone with a modicum of common sense, this looks like another serious wave of state intervention in our eating habits.

So why the moaning? Well, earlier drafts of the strategy suggested even more illiberal policies, like extending advertising bans on foods high in salt, fat and sugar, and banning supermarket promotions of ‘unhealthy’ foods. Instead, a greater emphasis has been placed on encouraging children to exercise – to be paid for by the sugary drinks tax.

Sarah Wollaston MP, chair of the Commons Health Committee, said: ‘I’m afraid it does show the hand of big industry lobbyists and that’s really disappointing.’ Diane Abbott similarly declared: ‘Theresa May has given in to the food and drink industry at the expense of our children’s health.’ Jamie Oliver was apparently ‘in shock’ at the strategy, saying: ‘It contains a few nice ideas, but so much is missing.’ Even the British Retail Consortium (BRC), which represents the big supermarkets, was disappointed, arguing that a voluntary scheme for sugar reduction would lead to some firms seeking a competitive advantage by not cutting sugar as much as others. Instead, the BRC wants mandatory reductions.

All of which confirms a much-repeated lesson of modern politics: there is simply no satisfying public-health zealots. Once upon a time, slapping a tax on sugary drinks and demanding the reformulation of foods were the key demands of anti-sugar campaigners. Now, an obesity strategy that does precisely those things shows the government has caved in to Big Food.

The sugary drinks tax is not only illiberal, it’s plain dumb. It won’t have any noticeable effect on obesity. Those who love a particular brand of sugary drink will just cough up more money to buy it. Those who like such drinks but aren’t too fussed about brand can switch to a cheaper one and probably end up paying less. In any event, so few calories come from sugary drinks that, even if people stopped drinking them altogether, it would make little impact on their waistlines, especially if they satisfy their sweet tooths with other products instead. As it happens, sales of sugary soda in Mexico, which introduced a similar tax a couple of years ago, already appear to be bouncing back. And whose consumption was affected most by the tax? Those with the lowest incomes. A sugary drinks tax means robbing the poor to soothe the anxieties of the rich.

The other major intervention in the strategy is the plan to browbeat food manufacturers into cutting sugar in their products by five per cent every year for the next four years. This will make foods less enjoyable – the sugar is there for a reason, after all. Moreover, you can’t simply replace sugar in many products with artificial sweeteners because the sugar is important in the consistency of the product. Biscuits and cakes depend on sugar, in part, for their texture. And how do you make a bar of milk chocolate less sugary? There is little alternative but to make the bars smaller. So we’ll be buying less enjoyable food or just getting less of it for our money.

What no one seems to be asking is why the government needs an obesity strategy in the first place. For most people, the problem of obesity is relatively straightforward: eat less and take more exercise. Of course, that is often easier said than done, but ham-fisted government regulation is hardly the answer. Demanding that Whitehall gets a say in what ingredients are used in our food is a recipe for, if not disaster, worse food and higher prices. If people want to cut down on sugar, all they need to do is stop eating it. The choice should be left up to us.

What’s more, we are not in the midst of some national emergency, with obesity rates skyrocketing. In fact, obesity rates among children plateaued 10 years ago, and have probably fallen since. Moreover, most people who fit the definition of ‘obese’ are merely mildly chubby – that spare tyre is unlikely to have any significant impact on your health. For a small percentage of people, their obesity is such that it could reduce their life expectancy and make day-to-day living much more difficult. Let’s devote our energies to solving their problems rather than taxing and regulating everyone.

The obesity strategy is awful, but it could have been worse. Maybe Theresa May will be a more traditionally Conservative prime minister – that is, less interested in micromanaging our lives – than her paternalistic predecessor, David Cameron. Maybe dealing with Brexit will ensure her diary is too full to worry about such trivialities. Here’s hoping.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


29 August, 2016

Almost Everything the Media Tell You About Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Is Wrong

A major new report, published today in the journal The New Atlantis, challenges the leading narratives that the media has pushed regarding sexual orientation and gender identity.

Co-authored by two of the nation’s leading scholars on mental health and sexuality, the 143-page report discusses over 200 peer-reviewed studies in the biological, psychological, and social sciences, painstakingly documenting what scientific research shows and does not show about sexuality and gender.

The major takeaway, as the editor of the journal explains, is that “some of the most frequently heard claims about sexuality and gender are not supported by scientific evidence.”

Here are four of the report’s most important conclusions:

The belief that sexual orientation is an innate, biologically fixed human property—that people are ‘born that way’—is not supported by scientific evidence.

Likewise, the belief that gender identity is an innate, fixed human property independent of biological sex—so that a person might be a ‘man trapped in a woman’s body’ or ‘a woman trapped in a man’s body’—is not supported by scientific evidence.

Only a minority of children who express gender-atypical thoughts or behavior will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood. There is no evidence that all such children should be encouraged to become transgender, much less subjected to hormone treatments or surgery.

Non-heterosexual and transgender people have higher rates of mental health problems (anxiety, depression, suicide), as well as behavioral and social problems (substance abuse, intimate partner violence), than the general population. Discrimination alone does not account for the entire disparity.

The report, “Sexuality and Gender: Findings from the Biological, Psychological, and Social Sciences,” is co-authored by Dr. Lawrence Mayer and Dr. Paul McHugh. Mayer is a scholar-in-residence in the Department of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University and a professor of statistics and biostatistics at Arizona State University.

McHugh, whom the editor of The New Atlantis describes as “arguably the most important American psychiatrist of the last half-century,” is a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and was for 25 years the psychiatrist-in-chief at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. It was during his tenure as psychiatrist-in-chief at Johns Hopkins that he put an end to sex reassignment surgery there, after a study launched at Hopkins revealed that it didn’t have the benefits for which doctors and patients had long hoped.

Implications for Policy

The report focuses exclusively on what scientific research shows and does not show. But this science can have implications for public policy.

The report reviews rigorous research showing that ‘only a minority of children who experience cross-gender identification will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood.’

Take, for example, our nation’s recent debates over transgender policies in schools. One of the consistent themes of the report is that science does not support the claim that “gender identity” is a fixed property independent of biological sex, but rather that a combination of biological, environmental, and experiential factors likely shape how individuals experience and express themselves when it comes to sex and gender.

The report also discusses the reality of neuroplasticity: that all of our brains can and do change throughout our lives (especially, but not only, in childhood) in response to our behavior and experiences. These changes in the brain can, in turn, influence future behavior.

This provides more reason for concern over the Obama administration’s recent transgender school policies. Beyond the privacy and safety concerns, there is thus also the potential that such policies will result in prolonged identification as transgender for students who otherwise would have naturally grown out of it.

The report reviews rigorous research showing that “only a minority of children who experience cross-gender identification will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood.” Policymakers should be concerned with how misguided school policies might encourage students to identify as girls when they are boys, and vice versa, and might result in prolonged difficulties. As the report notes, “There is no evidence that all children who express gender-atypical thoughts or behavior should be encouraged to become transgender.”

Beyond school policies, the report raises concerns about proposed medical intervention in children. Mayer and McHugh write: “We are disturbed and alarmed by the severity and irreversibility of some interventions being publicly discussed and employed for children.”

They continue: “We are concerned by the increasing tendency toward encouraging children with gender identity issues to transition to their preferred gender through medical and then surgical procedures.” But as they note, “There is little scientific evidence for the therapeutic value of interventions that delay puberty or modify the secondary sex characteristics of adolescents.”

Findings on Transgender Issues

The same goes for social or surgical gender transitions in general. Mayer and McHugh note that the “scientific evidence summarized suggests we take a skeptical view toward the claim that sex reassignment procedures provide the hoped for benefits or resolve the underlying issues that contribute to elevated mental health risks among the transgender population.” Even after sex reassignment surgery, patients with gender dysphoria still experience poor outcomes:

Compared to the general population, adults who have undergone sex reassignment surgery continue to have a higher risk of experiencing poor mental health outcomes. One study found that, compared to controls, sex-reassigned individuals were about five times more likely to attempt suicide and about 19 times more likely to die by suicide.

Mayer and McHugh urge researchers and physicians to work to better “understand whatever factors may contribute to the high rates of suicide and other psychological and behavioral health problems among the transgender population, and to think more clearly about the treatment options that are available.” They continue:

In reviewing the scientific literature, we find that almost nothing is well understood when we seek biological explanations for what causes some individuals to state that their gender does not match their biological sex. … Better research is needed, both to identify ways by which we can help to lower the rates of poor mental health outcomes and to make possible more informed discussion about some of the nuances present in this field.

Policymakers should take these findings very seriously. For example, the Obama administration recently finalized a new Department of Health and Human Services mandate that requires all health insurance plans under Obamacare to cover sex reassignment treatments and all relevant physicians to perform them. The regulations will force many physicians, hospitals, and other health care providers to participate in sex reassignment surgeries and treatments, even if doing so violates their moral and religious beliefs or their best medical judgment.

Rather than respect the diversity of opinions on sensitive and controversial health care issues, the regulations endorse and enforce one highly contested and scientifically unsupported view. As Mayer and McHugh urge, more research is needed, and physicians need to be free to practice the best medicine.

Stigma, Prejudice Don’t Explain Tragic Outcomes

The report also highlights that people who identify as LGBT face higher risks of adverse physical and mental health outcomes, such as “depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and most alarmingly, suicide.” The report summarizes some of those findings:

Members of the non-heterosexual population are estimated to have about 1.5 times higher risk of experiencing anxiety disorders than members of the heterosexual population, as well as roughly double the risk of depression, 1.5 times the risk of substance abuse, and nearly 2.5 times the risk of suicide.

Members of the transgender population are also at higher risk of a variety of mental health problems compared to members of the non-transgender population. Especially alarmingly, the rate of lifetime suicide attempts across all ages of transgender individuals is estimated at 41 percent, compared to under 5 percent in the overall U.S. population.

What accounts for these tragic outcomes? Mayer and McHugh investigate the leading theory—the “social stress model”—which proposes that “stressors like stigma and prejudice account for much of the additional suffering observed in these subpopulations.”

But they argue that the evidence suggests that this theory “does not seem to offer a complete explanation for the disparities in the outcomes.” It appears that social stigma and stress alone cannot account for the poor physical and mental health outcomes that LGBT-identified people face.

One study found that, compared to controls, sex-reassigned individuals were about five times more likely to attempt suicide and about 19 times more likely to die by suicide.

As a result, they conclude that “More research is needed to uncover the causes of the increased rates of mental health problems in the LGBT subpopulations.” And they call on all of us work to “alleviate suffering and promote human health and flourishing.”

Findings Contradict Claims in Supreme Court’s Gay Marriage Ruling

Finally, the report notes that scientific evidence does not support the claim that people are “born that way” with respect to sexual orientation. The narrative pushed by Lady Gaga and others is not supported by the science. A combination of biological, environmental, and experiential factors likely account for an individual’s sexual attractions, desires, and identity, and “there are no compelling causal biological explanations for human sexual orientation.”

Furthermore, the scientific research shows that sexual orientation is more fluid than the media suggests. The report notes that “Longitudinal studies of adolescents suggest that sexual orientation may be quite fluid over the life course for some people, with one study estimating that as many as 80 percent of male adolescents who report same-sex attractions no longer do so as adults.”

These findings—that scientific research does not support the claim that sexual orientation is innate and immutable—directly contradict claims made by Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy in last year’s Obergefell ruling. Kennedy wrote, “their immutable nature dictates that same-sex marriage is their only real path to this profound commitment” and “in more recent years have psychiatrists and others recognized that sexual orientation is both a normal expression of human sexuality and immutable.”

But the science does not show this.

While the marriage debate was about the nature of what marriage is, incorrect scientific claims about sexual orientation were consistently used in the campaign to redefine marriage.

In the end, Mayer and McHugh observe that much about sexuality and gender remains unknown. They call for honest, rigorous, and dispassionate research to help better inform public discourse and, more importantly, sound medical practice.

As this research continues, it’s important that public policy not declare scientific debates over, or rush to legally enforce and impose contested scientific theories. As Mayer and McHugh note, “Everyone—scientists and physicians, parents and teachers, lawmakers and activists—deserves access to accurate information about sexual orientation and gender identity.”

We all must work to foster a culture where such information can be rigorously pursued and everyone—whatever their convictions, and whatever their personal situation—is treated with the civility, respect, and generosity that each of us deserves.


Comedian Aries Spears: ‘Women … Rape Men Financially’ Through Child Support Demands

There's something in that.  Divorce settlements can be huge

Comedian Aries Spears told a New York City radio show that women “rape men financially” with their child support demands.

In an Aug. 19 interview with “The Breakfast Club,” on Power 105.1 FM radio, Spears said he wants men to band together to “rewrite the laws” so that child support is based on what the child needs instead of how much the man makes.

“The way women in the courts rape men financially is ridiculous, and until men start banding together, and say enough is enough and rewrite the laws, it’s going to continue,” said Spears, who was a regular on “MADtv.”

Spears said the child support laws “won’t be rewritten until men get together and decide to make a movement, but the problem is, we don’t want to make the movement.”

When asked what is “fair when it comes to child support,” Spears said, “What’s fair? What’s realistic? A kid should get what’s necessary, not what’s entitled based upon how much you make. That’s what the system does. The system pays a woman based on what you make instead of what’s necessary.”

Spears, who pays child support for two of his three children, said he pays more than $5,000 a month for child support.


Doctors Sue Obama Administration for Forcing Them to Perform Gender Transition Procedures

Five states and a group of religiously-affiliated hospitals and physicians are suing the Obama administration over a federal mandate that forces doctors to perform gender transition procedures on adults and children against their medical judgment.

The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in a Texas federal court, attempts to roll back a rule imposed by the Department of Health and Human Services in May that expanded the interpretation of “sex” under the Affordable Care Act to include “gender identity.”

In doing so, the Obama administration added transgender people to the list of protected classes under the Affordable Care Act, which states that individuals can’t be denied certain federally-funded health benefits because of their “race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability.”

The move was part of a broader push by President Barack Obama to further transgender rights in the U.S.

The implications of the HHS mandate are broad. By its own estimates, HHS said the rule would “likely cover almost all licensed physicians because they accept federal financial assistance.”

For example, HHS said a doctor “specializing in gynecological services that previously declined to provide a medically necessary hysterectomy for a transgender man would have to revise its policy to provide the procedure for transgender individuals in the same manner it provides the procedure for other individuals.”

“It’s a very rare moment in history when the government would force doctors to go against their conscience and their medical judgment and perform procedures that may be deeply harmful to patients,” said Luke Goodrich, a lawyer at the Becket Fund, which is representing Franciscan Alliance, a religious hospital network, and the Christian Medical and Dental Associations, two of the parties involved the lawsuit.

Also challenging the HHS mandate is Specialty Physicians of Illinois, along with the states of Texas, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Kentucky, and Kansas, which are all led by Republican governors.

Notably, the Obama administration does not require coverage of gender reassignment procedures under Medicare or Medicaid for children or adults because a government review of the clinical evidence available for gender reassignment surgery was inconclusive on whether it was helpful or harmful to patients with gender dysphoria.

“Based on a thorough review of the clinical evidence available at this time, there is not enough evidence to determine whether gender reassignment surgery improves health outcomes for Medicare beneficiaries with gender dysphoria,” a report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services stated.

Instead, decisions for transition-related surgeries under Medicaid are made individually on a case-by-case basis.

“So you have doctors reaching one conclusion, and then you have politically zealous bureaucrats in the Office of Civil Rights—a different branch of HHS—saying science be damned, every private health care provider in the country has to cover this stuff in their health insurance and the doctors have to perform it,” Goodrich told The Daily Signal. “It’s deeply hypocritical.”

The lawsuit challenging the HHS mandate was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, which is the same court that temporarily blocked the Obama administration’s bathroom mandate on Sunday. In putting a halt to the policy that mandates public schools must open their restrooms, locker rooms, and showers to transgender students based on their gender identity instead of their biological sex, U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor argued the administration overstepped its authority.

When HHS issued the new gender identity rule on May 18, the agency cited as authority the Obama administration’s bathroom mandate, whose legitimacy is now in question.

In the HHS mandate case, plaintiffs argue that the Obama administration curtailed the voice of the people in issuing such sweeping regulations, and didn’t follow standard rulemaking procedures under the Administrative Procedure Act and multiple other federal laws. This argument is similar to the one brought by the 13 states challenging the Obama administration’s bathroom mandate in the same Texas court.

Plaintiffs are also arguing that the HHS rules violate doctors’ ability to exercise their best medical judgement and their religiously-inspired desire to care for patients.

“The new mandate forces doctors to perform gender reassignment procedures on individuals including young children, even when those procedures may be physically and emotionally harmful and may violate the doctors’ faith and medical judgment,” Goodrich said. “These organizations care for transgender individuals all the time in lots of different respects but they cannot in good conscience or in their own medical judgment do procedures that would be harmful, so they felt like they had to get relief from the new regulation.”

Jillian Weiss, executive director of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, suggested the lawsuit against HHS was unnecessary in a statement to The Associated Press.

“The only thing a doctor is obliged to do is treat all patients, including trans patients, with dignity and respect and to make treatment decisions free from bias,” Weiss said. “If a doctor has a sound, evidence-based, medical reason to delay transition care for a specific patient, that would be respected under the regulations.”


When a Briton defends free speech in Australia

In Q&A, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s flagship political panel show, spiked editor Brendan O’Neill once again prompted the right-thinking first to tweet their spleen, and then to fire off snarky op-eds. And the reason for the riling? Was it O’Neill’s criticism of the Australian state’s incarceration of migrants on the micro-island of Nauru, ‘a kind of purgatory, a limbo where aspiring migrants are stuck between a place they don’t want to be and a place they want to be’, as he described it? Or was it perhaps his criticism of pro-refugee campaigners, whom, as The Australian reports, O’Neill accused of ‘infantilising’ migrants, treating them as weak, helpless, other?

Nope, none of the above. What got up the nose of the unthinkingly politically correct was O’Neill’s attack on Section 18C of Australia’s Racial Discrimination Act, which prohibits speech ‘reasonably likely… to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people’ because of their ‘race, colour or national or ethnic origin’. Or, to put it another way: Brendan O’Neill defended free speech. And, it was this, this defence of one of the cornerstones of radical, liberal, enlightened thought, that outraged the nominally liberal and leftist.

Here’s what O’Neill said: ‘I love hearing hate speech because it reminds me I live in a free society.’ Got that? O’Neill loves hearing hate speech, not in itself, not because he just loves vitriol, as some of his detractors really seem to believe. No, he loves hearing it because of what hearing it means: namely, that we live in a society that is confident enough in itself, in its liberal values, that it can tolerate dissenting and hateful views. O’Neill then went on to explain why freedom of speech is precisely the mechanism through which we can challenge racism: ‘The real problem with Section 18C is it actually disempowers anti-racists by denying us the right to see racism, to know it, to understand it and to confront it in public. Instead it entrusts the authorities to hide it away on our behalf so we never have a reckoning with it.’

For anyone faintly familiar with a liberal and radical tradition of thought, from Voltaire to Frederick Douglass to Karl Marx, O’Neill’s argument shouldn’t be controversial: it is only through the airing of prejudice that it can be reckoned with. And it certainly shouldn’t be difficult to understand. But sadly it seems that, for too many, it is. To these, the liberal-ish and the right-on, it is an anathema, thought from another planet.

First came the high-profile Twitterers, the attack dogs of elite sentiment. Celebrity chef Georgina Dent said: ‘See, if hearing hate speech is the bit you love most about living in a “free country” you’re doing it wrong.’ Commentator Jane Caro quickly joined in: ‘Brendan O’Neill may not be aware of how privileged he is to “like” hearing hate speech. I’ve seen it intimidate people into silence.’ And in chimed the widely retweeted campaigner and columnist, Mariam Veiszadeh: ‘Those who argue that S18C should be repealed have the privilege of never having to seek its protection.’

Then came the op-eds. A Sydney Morning Herald writer declared: ‘The audience of Q&A has exercised its freedom of speech to call BS on a white man who courageously declared, among a panel of fellow white folk, that he loves hearing hate speech.’ And 9News talked of ‘a white male free-speech crusader’ being ‘mocked online after declaring on last night’s Q&A programme that he “loves hearing hate speech”’.

What’s immediately striking about the response to O’Neill’s defence of free speech is the incredulity. ‘An extraordinary statement’, remarked one commentator, as if O’Neill had just proclaimed the Earth’s flatness. Another said it was ‘ridiculous’. All of which shows just how removed today’s liberals and lefties are from their own liberal, left-wing traditions.

Then of course there is the substance, if you can call it that, of their criticism. That is, O’Neill, as a white man, is in no position to criticise the criminalisation of racist hate speech. Why? Because, as a white man, he has not experienced racial hate speech; he does not know how it feels to be subject to racial hate speech, and therefore he has no authority to comment on it. Where do you start with this steaming pile of emotivist, particularist proverbial? First, O’Neill is making a universalist case for free speech. Not for himself. Not for white people. And not for middle-class tweeters. He is making a case for free speech for everyone. Second, O’Neill’s own background – a son of working-class Irish immigrants, as it happens, which is hardly a marker of privilege in Britain - is not important. What matters is the argument, not its propagator. If a ‘person of colour’, as O’Neill’s critics have it, had made the same argument, would it suddenly have become more persuasive, more legitimate?

And third and finally, who exactly do they think is empowered by Section 18C? Is it indigenous Australians? Is it the wretched of the Earth? Or is it the Australian state, complete with its retinue of privileged white judges and civil servants who, thanks to this pernicious bit of legislation, are now authorised to adjudicate on what is illegal and what is legal speech? And here we come to the miserable irony of those who are mocking O’Neill for his defence of free speech: they would rather support the state, the most powerful and, yes, privileged force in the land than give people the freedom to say what they think. It seems there are none so dangerous as the unthinkingly self-righteous.

In his Crikey column, Guy Rundle captured well the irony of the anti-O’Neill, anti-white-privilege backlash, particularly as it came from O’Neill’s fellow panellist, the comedian Corinne Grant: ‘It’s particularly counterproductive when people from a creative background — playwrights, comedians — take so easily to the task of censoriousness and state control of speech. It is an invitation to hand over freedom on the promise that the state will guarantee it for you – and reach the point where you positively welcome having judges “authorising” speech. Nothing much can be achieved while this attitude persists, unexamined, unreflected upon, among people who should be challenging elites, not forming new ones.’

And it’s precisely the freedom to challenge elites and elite views that animates O’Neill’s defence of free speech. As the man himself put it in that heated TV studio: ‘It’s very important when it comes to expressing opinion, even if it’s ugly opinion, to protect people’s right to do that. Otherwise you’ll end up in a situation where the state has the right to decide what’s a good opinion or a bad opinion. And least of all minority groups should support that. Every marginalised group in history has seen free speech as their greatest friend. It’s the means through they can express themselves, can argue against their oppression, through which they can challenge the authorities. We have to defend the right for free speech for everyone, particularly for marginalised groups.’



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


28 August, 2016

Controversial election-favourite Geert Wilders calls for all mosques to be shut and the Koran banned in Holland

Dutch right wing politician Geert Wilders has called for all mosques and Islamic schools to be closed down and the Koran banned in a one-page election manifesto.

The Freedom Party leader, who is topping the polls ahead of next year's elections, also wants a ban on all asylum seekers and migrants from Islamic nations, as well as a Dutch exit from the European Union.

The divisive politician has been leading the polls in Holland for several months, although he may find it difficult to form a coalition due to his extremist views. 

Wilders' manifesto was the first published by a major political party ahead of elections for the lower house of Dutch parliament which are due by March 15 next year.

The party also called for a ban on headscarves for those who work in public and a ban on all other Islamic symbols deemed to be contrary to the interests of public order.

As a preventive measure, radical Muslims would be locked away in jail while criminals with a double nationality would lose their Dutch passport and face deportation.

The party summed up their programme saying 'instead of financing the whole world and people we do not want to see here, we will spend money on ordinary Dutchmen'.

Wilders said the manifesto was a response to '1,400 years of Jihad'. 

In polls, the PVV is on course to take 35 seats in the 150-seat Dutch Parliament, about ten seats more than the ruling Liberal party of PM Mark Rutte.


Extreme Position of Pro-Choice Politicians Contradicts American Consensus

Lurking behind the annual split among Americans over the labels “pro-life” and “pro-choice” is a new reality. The fact is that today, whatever label they choose, Americans overwhelmingly support abortion restrictions.

Pro-choice politicians who typically support unrestricted, or almost unrestricted, abortion share the extreme view of a tiny minority of the American people.

Consider this. A majority of Americans who identify as pro-choice (62 percent) say that abortion should be restricted to—at most—the first trimester of pregnancy. Less than a quarter of them (22 percent) want unrestricted abortion.

Among Americans as a whole, the number who want such abortion restrictions is about eight in 10 (78 percent). Only about one in 10 of this group (13 percent) would leave it unrestricted.

Almost twice as many American voters would limit abortion to—at most—saving the life of the mother (24 percent) as would allow it any time.

It’s not a partisan issue either. Strong majorities regardless of political identity would restrict abortion to the first trimester, at most. This includes about two-thirds of Democrats (65 percent), as well as eight in 10 independents (80 percent), and nine in 10 Republicans (93 percent). There are few issues in our country on which you find such a strong consensus from across the political spectrum.

The polling we commissioned on this issue was done by the gold standard in public opinion research: Marist. That’s the same pollster used by NBC News, McClatchy, and The Wall Street Journal.

The numbers have been consistent on this for nearly a decade. Americans overwhelmingly support substantial restrictions on abortion. “Pro-life” politicians typically support bills consistent with this national consensus.

Nevertheless, self-identified “pro-choice” politicians generally hew to a policy orthodoxy that allows for no restrictions at all on abortion—even though it’s a view hardly ever shared by their constituents.

The typical “pro-choice” politician today represents the most radical view of abortion in the country—a view they share with only about one in 10 Americans (13 percent).

Some of these politicians celebrate abortion as a right that should not be restricted in any way. That’s the same line taken by the abortion industry, whose livelihood depends on performing this destructive procedure.

Other politicians hide behind the idea that they are “personally opposed” to abortion, but cannot impose their will on the majority. What majority are they talking about? Nearly everyone in the country wants solid restrictions on abortion, making such a position either ignorant or dishonest.

If a politician is really “personally opposed,” he should have the decency to follow his conscience and not block the vast consensus on this issue.

Better yet, he could take John F. Kennedy’s advice, who said when running for president in 1960 that he would resign if his conscience came into conflict with what he saw as the public interest. Kennedy said he hoped “any conscientious public servant would do the same.” That’s still good advice, and a worthy wish, five decades later.

Instead, the opposite is occurring.

Despite the American consensus on this issue, more and more extreme positions are being proposed by pro-abortion politicians.

Some are pledging to repeal the Hyde Amendment, which bans tax dollars from being used to pay for abortions—contrary to Americans’ view that tax dollars should not be used this way.

Nearly two in three Americans would prohibit the use of tax dollars for abortion (62 percent). This includes more than four in 10 Democrats (44 percent), more than six in 10 independents (61 percent), and more than eight in 10 Republicans (84 percent).

Those who identify as pro-choice are split too, with 45 percent saying tax dollars should not be used for abortion.

Abortion is now the number one cause of death in America. With more than 50 million abortions since the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, no other issue comes close in scale. And yet, each year, another million abortions are allowed to occur by politicians who turn a deaf ear to the will of the people and oppose restrictions.

It’s time for the abortion extremism among these politicians to end. It’s time for “pro-choice” politicians to begin supporting policy proposals that restrict abortion consistent with our national consensus.


Popular Australian hardware chain is now pandering to Muslims

Beef OK, vegetarian OK but no bacon in their sizzles!  And DEFINITELY no pork sausages!   They say defensively they are just trying to keep it simple.  If so, how is vegetarian allowed? And what is complicated about pork sausages?  Good that Woolworths still includes bacon & eggs in their sizzles.  I had some recently

For many Australians, a Bunnings sausage sizzle is an institution, a reminder of being dragged to the hardware store on a Saturday morning by your partner or parents.

Others see the tradition as a way to raise funds for local sports clubs or community groups.

However shoppers have been left confused after it was revealed the sausage sizzles, which are a fixture at the hardware giant, also come with a strict set of guidelines.

The most baffling rule to one social media user was that bacon is not allowed to be sold at the BBQ's.

'I went to Bunnings yesterday and as you do I stopped at the Rotary sausage sizzle on the way out,' Dave wrote on Facebook.

'There was three or four blokes about my age working on the BBQ and I couldn't help myself, I just had to find out if it was true or an urban myth. 'So I asked; Is it true that they can't cook bacon on those stalls?

'I'm sad to say it is true, if you want a bacon sanga don't go to the Bunnings sausage sizzle, anywhere in Australia!,' his post finished.

Bunnings said they keep the barbecues 'simple' to allow all community groups equal opportunity.

'Our reasons behind keeping the offer simple and offering meat sausages is to ensure that all community groups are able to host a fundraiser sausage sizzle with the greatest amount of ease, along with providing a consistent offer for customers across all our stores,' Michael Schneider, Bunnings Managing Director told Daily Mail Australia in a statement.

'On a case by case basis, we also allow community groups to have a vegetarian fundraising sausage sizzle if that is their preference, which is supported by appropriate customer signage,' he added.


'Born This Way'? New Study Debunks LGBT Claims

Among leftists, it is at convenient times an accepted fact (“settled science,” you might say) that homosexuals and transgendered people are “born that way” — that their sexual attractions or gender identities are not the product of choice, but a matter of genetics. (When that’s not convenient, of course, it’s a perfectly acceptable “life choice.”) A new report, instantly controversial, torpedoes that understanding of homosexuality and gender dysphoria, the medical term for transgenderism.

The report, entitled “Sexuality and Gender: Findings from the Biological, Psychological, and Social Sciences,” is co-authored by two of the most well respected experts on mental health and human sexuality. Dr. Paul McHugh, described as “arguably the most important American psychiatrist of the last half century,” is a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the prestigious Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and served for 25 years as psychiatrist in chief for Johns Hopkins Hospital. And Dr. Lawrence Mayer, Psychiatry Department scholar-in-residence at Johns Hopkins University, is a professor of statistics and biostatistics at Arizona State University.

While, not surprisingly, many on the Left and in the LGBT “community” immediately raged against the report as anti-LGBT, it should be noted that Johns Hopkins was the first medical facility in the U.S. to perform sex-reassignment surgery, and did so for decades until a growing body of peer-reviewed studies, including an analysis of how Hopkins' own transgendered patients fared over time, led the hospital to end those types of surgeries. Furthermore, McHugh is no far right-wing ideologue or Bible-thumper; he’s a self-described “politically liberal” Democrat.

Yet it was his long-term experience with patients who suffer from gender dysphoria that led him to his conclusions, summarized in a report that analyzed more than 200 peer reviewed studies. McHugh and Mayer are also very up front about what the science does and does not show. They freely admit the gaps in the available research, which they argue underscores the need for more research before establishing medical standards, public policy guidelines, and laws, based on “settled science” that is not at all settled.

So what did the study find? A few excerpts:

“The belief that sexual orientation is an innate, biologically fixed human property — that people are ‘born that way’ — is not supported by scientific evidence.

Likewise, the belief that gender identity is an innate, fixed human property independent of biological sex — so that a person might be a ‘man trapped in a woman’s body’ or ‘a woman trapped in a man’s body’ — is not supported by scientific evidence.

Only a minority of children who express gender-atypical thoughts or behavior will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood. There is no evidence that all such children should be encouraged to become transgender, much less subjected to hormone treatments or surgery.

Non-heterosexual and transgender people have higher rates of mental health problems (anxiety, depression, suicide), as well as behavioral and social problems (substance abuse, intimate partner violence), than the general population. Discrimination alone does not account for the entire disparity.”

One of the most shocking findings in the report is that not only do people who suffer from gender dysphoria experience far higher rates of social pathologies (depression, substance abuse, suicide) than the general population, but sex-reassignment surgery does not offer the relief those on the Left claim.

One study finds that “compared to [the general population], sex-reassigned individuals were about five times more likely to attempt suicide and about 19 times more likely to die by suicide.” The study finds a staggering 41% of transgendered individuals will attempt suicide in their lifetime.

The duo investigated the underlying causes of these tragic statistics, and found that while “stressors like stigma and prejudice account for much of the additional suffering observed in these subpopulations … [this theory] does not seem to offer a complete explanation for the disparities in the outcomes.” Even in social environments where transgendered people are accepted, they still suffer from above-normal rates of these social pathologies. McHugh and Mayer encourage additional research be done to study the correlation between childhood sexual abuse and sexual orientation (studies have shown non-heterosexuals to be two to three times more likely to have experienced childhood sexual abuse as compared to heterosexuals).

Far from offering condemnation or judgment, they stress the need for greater understanding of the science behind gender dysphoria, and a more thoughtful, science-based approached to treating it. “More research is needed to uncover the causes of the increased rates of mental health problems in the LGBT subpopulations,” McHugh and Mayer say, calling on society to work to “alleviate suffering and promote human health and flourishing.”

All the more reason to base medical treatment and public policy on sound science, which is not currently the case. The authors declare they are “disturbed and alarmed by the severity and irreversibility of some interventions being publicly discussed and employed for children. … We are concerned by the increasing tendency toward encouraging children with gender identity issues to transition to their preferred gender through medical and then surgical procedures.” The pair notes, “There is little scientific evidence for the therapeutic value of interventions that delay puberty or modify the secondary sex characteristics of adolescents.”

The Obama administration has used (and abused) its vast power to dismiss the concerns of parents, policymakers and medical professionals in implementing policy in the furtherance of its ideological goal — forced social acceptance of gender dysphoria as normal, all under the guise of medical science.

Part of that effort was Obama’s announcement earlier this year that schools receiving federal funding were prohibited from requiring students to use the restroom and shower facilities of their birth sex, while threatening a loss of funding for any school that didn’t comply with his imperial decree. Essentially, this meant boys who think they are girls would get to shower with female classmates.

Luckily, U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor has injected some sanity into the debate, issuing an injunction against implementation of this policy, stating that Obama exceeded his authority in his attempt to reinterpret Title IX. As O'Connor said, “It cannot be disputed that the meaning of the term ‘sex’ [in Title IX] meant the biological and anatomical differences between male and female students as determined by their birth.”

Gender dysphoria is a real and debilitating problem for a tiny minority of the population, and we should treat those who suffer from it compassionately. At the same time, we do not show true compassion by pretending it is not an illness, or by encouraging those who suffer from it to embrace and celebrate it.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


27 August, 2016

The Red Pill: the movie about men that feminists didn’t want you to see

A feminist filmmaker has re-ignited the gender war by daring to make a controversial movie about the Men Right’s Movement.

As part of her research for The Red Pill, American film maker Cassie Jaye spent hundreds of hours with the internet’s most notorious Men’s Rights Activists (MRAs) over a two-and-a-half year period. For balance, she also interviewed some of  their fiercest critics – such as Katherine Spillar, Executive Director of the Feminist Majority Foundation. 

Jaye began the process as a feminist, but she ended up not only sympathising with the MRAs, but fundamentally questioning the “aggressive” ethos of modern feminism.

For her efforts, she says she has been smeared, threatened with “career suicide” and even saw her funding dry up – to the point where the movie was unlikely to see the light of day.

But then something incredible happened: via a Kickstarter fund, a “global army” of 2,732 free speech advocates (of both genders), raised a staggering $211,260, ensuring the movie’s cinematic release.

Jaye, 29, has heavyweight credentials, winning multiple awards for her two previous movies, Daddy I Do and The Right to Love: An American Family.

The title The Red Pill refers to a scene in the Matrix, when Keanu Reeves’ character takes the red pill to see “the truth” – MRAs claim they see the “truth” about women and a world they feel is systematically stacked against men and boys.

The Red Pills’ key interviewees – including MRA luminaries such as A Voice For Men founder Paul Elam, author of The Myth Of Male Power Dr Warren Farrell and the National Coalition For Men’s Dean Esmay – have long been smeared as some of the internet’s biggest anti-feminist bogeyman.

Yet until now no serious documentary maker has tried to get inside their world.

“When I started this project, my perception of MRAs was definitely negative,” she tells me. “I thought they’d say shocking things and it would be a peek inside this mysterious, misogynistic community. All I knew about them was the cherry-picked, shocking comments used on feminist websites.

“But when I started to really listen to them, I started to empathise with a lot of their issues. Our cultural conditioning is that women have been oppressed and men are the oppressors. But I saw that wasn’t so.

“Within the feminist community, there is a level of dismissiveness and a lack of compassion. There is a feeling ‘they have been the oppressors, and now it’s our turn’. Some prefer to step on men in the process. Even when men were suffering, like falling behind at school, I heard a lot of talk about ‘toxic masculinity’ – that it was somehow the fault of the patriarchy, that men caused their own problems.

“But the MRAs weren’t loners or misogynists. Most of them are in loving relationships and have children, and that was shocking for me.”

When it began to emerge that Jaye was to tell a sympathetic story of the MRAs, her feminist interviewees were furious – and her funding suddenly dried up. “There was anger from feminists when they found out I was being too kind to MRAs,” she says. “They said, 'they’re going to turn on you. Don’t be fooled’.

“As time went on they did not want to go through with funding – because I was balanced and ‘giving the MRAs a platform’.  “It was a way of stopping this film getting too big. They hoped it would fizzle out. They believed they had control of the film. It was an indirect attempt to censor my voice.

‘So I looked at film grants, but there were no categories for boys and men. The situation was desperate”.

It was at this point when the internet stepped in, spurred on by a rally article in Breibart, and raised the six figure sum needed to push the film towards distribution.

“People power, Twitter power, social media power, came to our rescue,” she says. “People were disgusted that one side was trying to silence and prevent this film from being made.

“Many said ‘I’m not into the MRA thing, but I absolutely believe they have the right to have their say’.

“It was a global uprising of both genders; people from China, India, Australia, USA, Canada and the UK”.

Now Red Pill is due for a cinematic release in Autumn 2016 to drive men’s issues on the radar ahead of the US Presidential Election (there will also be a London screening).

“I didn’t realise it would get so much resistance,” says Jaye. “But we can now afford an Oscar qualifying screening. This forces a great amount of very prestigious people to watch it.

“I’ve gotten a lot of emails from people high up in the film industry who not only support it, but even wanted to make it, but they felt it would be career suicide.

“Making this was the most life-changing experience of my life. It completely changed how I see men, from my relationship with my boyfriend to my father figures. It will open doors for understanding how men work.

“Above all, Red Pill is not about attacking women: it is about supporting men. And that can only be a good thing”.


Air Force Officer Faces Review Over Bible

The Military Religious Freedom Foundation is demanding an Air Force major be “aggressively punished” for having an open Bible on his desk at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, CO.

“It [the Bible] is very obviously a statement of Christian preference, Christian primacy,” MRFF founder Mikey Weinstein told me. “Had that been the Book of Satan or the Koran there would be blood in the freaking streets.”

He accused Maj. Steve Lewis, a supervisor at the Reserve National Security Space Institute, of “harboring and encouraging a truly abhorrent example of First Amendment civil rights violations.”

Mr. Weinstein is a fussy little fellow, isn’t he?

Col. Damon Feltman, the commander of the 310th Space Wing, told me they are reviewing the incident involving the Good Book. “He has removed the Bible voluntarily because he didn’t want this to cause attention or disruption to his unit,” Col. Feltman said. “I’ve performed a walk-through of the office and everything seemed to be in compliance with Air Force regulation.”

So when will Maj. Lewis be able to return the Bible to his desk?

“I’m waiting on the unit commander’s review of the situation before making a final assessment,” the colonel said.

He stressed that Air Force personnel are free to exercise their constitutional rights to practice their own religion “as long as it is respectful of other individual’s rights to follow their own belief system in ways that support good order and discipline and don’t detract from (the) military mission.”

“As long as he’s not doing something excessive, the existence of a Bible or the Koran or the Torah or some other religious article is not prohibited,” Col. Feltman said. “It’s what you do with it when you have it.”

Weinstein, who earns a paycheck by trying to eradicate Christianity from the Armed Forces, accused Maj. Lewis of committing a “repulsive violation of USAF regulations” as well as the U.S. Constitution.

“It’s not his desk,” he told me. “That desk belongs to the American people, to the U.S. military. If that desk was in his home or his car it would not be a problem.”

Weinstein fired off a nasty, adjective-laden letter to the base commander after receiving complaints from 33 unnamed Air Force personnel.  “We have 33 very scared Air Force families,” Weinstein told me.

Just a brief aside: If those Air Force personnel are terrified of a Bible, how in the world will they be able to muster the courage to fight the enemy?

Apparently one of Weinstein’s gentle snowflakes managed to conquer his fear long enough to sneak up on the open Bible and take several photographs — which were then submitted as evidence.

“Major Lewis has created an around-the-clock Christian Bible Shrine on his official USAF workstation desk that has been in prominent static display for years,” Weinstein said. “The pages in his open Bible on his USAF desk never change, ever.”

One of the airmen who reached out to Weinstein complained that the officer’s Bible is a “blatant case of Christian defiance and Christian discrimination.”

“I am intimidated by the display, and I am a practicing Christian,” the unnamed airman wrote. “This open Bible is discrimination at the highest level.”  The airman went on to say that he wasn’t just offended by the Bible, he was “outrageously offended.”

Travis Weber, the director of the Center for Religious Liberty at Family Research Council, said every service member has a right to the free exercise of religion. “It should be beyond clear that they are protected by the Constitution, statutory authority and regulations,” Weber told me.

He pointed to a recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces that reaffirmed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act “applies in the military context.”

“Men and women signing up to defend our country do not give up this right — especially when, of all things, they are fighting to defend the very Constitution which contains this protection,” Weber said.

Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jerry Boykin said the problem is that militant secularists see the Bible as a threat. “Indeed it is a powerful weapon, but it is not a threat to America,” he said. “The military should be focused on the real threats to this nation.”

Perhaps the Air Force should offer complimentary counseling for those personnel suffering from PTBS (Post Traumatic Bible Syndrome)?

For the record, there is no evidence that any of Weinstein’s clients spontaneously combusted or converted after glancing at the Holy Bible.


Human Rights Act WILL be scrapped and replaced with a British Bill of Rights, says Justice Secretary Liz Truss

The Human Rights Act will be scrapped and replaced with a British Bill of Rights, Justice Secretary Liz Truss promised today as she rubbished reports the move had been axed.

She said she was working on the details of the policy but refused to give any indication when it would be introduced.

It will allay fears among Tory MPs that the party's 2015 manifesto commitment had been put under review by the new Prime Minister following June's  Brexit vote.

Reports earlier this month quoted sources close to Theresa May saying the idea of a British Bill of Rights had been 'junked'.

But Ms Truss, who made history last month after Mrs May appointed her as Britain's first ever Justice Secretary, insisted the Government will introduce the Bill.

She told the BBC: 'We are committed to that. It is a manifesto pledge. We are looking very closely at the details but we have a manifesto pledge to deliver that.'

The Human Rights Act was brought in by Tony Blair and incorporated the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) into UK law. But any move by Mrs May's government to ditch the Act would not mean withdrawing from the ECHR

Mrs May ruled out withdrawing from the ECHR during the Conservative party leadership election, saying there was insufficient support for the move in the current Parliament.

Replacing the Act with a British Bill of Rights would aim to reiterate the supremacy of UK law and enable UK authorities to deport foreign criminals without being blocked by Strasbourg. 

Mr Cameron first pledged to introduce a Bill of Rights before the 2010 general election, arguing that replacing the Human Rights Act was the best way of curbing abuses.

He said the legislation would limit the ability of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to interfere in domestic decisions such as whether criminals could be deported.

The Liberal Democrats did not agree to the overhaul during the coalition years, but it was revived after the Tories won an overall majority last year.

The Bill would have provided explicit protections for 'freedom of expression' and the armed forces serving abroad.

However, Mrs May is said to have been unhappy with some of the details, including a concession that Britain would remain signed up to the ECHR.

The fine print of the policy had been largely drawn up by former Justice Secretary Michael Gove - who was summarily axed by Mrs May when she took over in Downing Street.

The PM's chief of staff, Nick Timothy, has previously suggested that a Bill of Rights would be pointless unless the UK leaves the jurisdiction of the ECHR.

Mrs May has already made clear she will not be pursuing her ambition of cutting ties with the court - which is separate from the EU - conceding there is not a majority in parliament for doing so.


Political Correctness Prevents Advancement of Science

Science can make us uncomfortable. Astronomy proved that the Earth goes around the sun, upending centuries of geocentric theology. Physics tells us that our universe will someday come to an end. DNA sequencing can reveal our true ancestry or genetic predispositions to cancer and Alzheimer’s disease, forever changing our life’s trajectory.

As unsettling as those discoveries have been for society, some research is so politically controversial that few dare to speak of it in public for fear of running afoul of the PC police. And this fear, argues Nathan Cofnas in the journal Foundations of Science, obstructs the self-correcting nature of scientific inquiry.

Mr. Cofnas begins the paper with the story of Socrates, who was executed for “corrupting the youth” of Greece. Forebodingly, he adds, “[T]he philosophy of his prosecutors — that morality-threatening scientific investigation should be prohibited — flourishes even today.”

To support his case, Mr. Cofnas focuses on the taboo subject of group differences in intelligence, which he says is suppressed by those who believe that even discussing the topic is “morally wrong or morally dangerous.”

Those who embrace such a viewpoint obviously do so with the honorable intention of preventing discrimination. However, the proverbial road to hell is paved with good intentions. Such misguided efforts to maintain perfect equality can hamper the advancement of knowledge. Mr. Cofnas states:

“[W]hen hypotheses are regarded as supporting certain moral values or desirable political goals, scientists often refuse to abandon them in the light of empirical evidence.”

Is he right? Absolutely, yes.

Not only do intellectuals refuse to abandon politically correct beliefs in the face of contradictory evidence, but simply questioning them can ruin a person’s career. Lawrence Summers’ tenure as president of Harvard was cut short because he suggested that there are intellectual differences between men and women. As a result of such punitive pushback, some researchers are afraid to investigate differences between male and female brains, which certainly exist. Without a doubt, this reticence is holding back the field of neuroscience.

A similar chilling effect can be seen in climatology. The only politically correct belief regarding the climate is that humans are 100% responsible for everything bad that happens and that the Four Horsemen are already marching toward Earth. Questioning that apocalyptic and unscientific belief has resulted in multiple researchers being labeled “climate deniers.” Climatology would greatly benefit from the more skeptical approach of so-called “lukewarmers,” but far too many are ostracized and demonized.

Discussions about the causes of homelessness also fall under the purview of the PC police. The politically correct explanation is that homelessness is the result of poverty. While obviously a factor, often left out of the debate is the fact that, according to the National Coalition for the Homeless, 20% to 25% of homeless people are severely mentally ill, a prevalence that is roughly four times that of the general population. The same group estimates that 38% and 26% of homeless people are dependent on alcohol and drugs, respectively. In fact, NCH states that, “Substance abuse [is] the single largest cause of homelessness for single adults.”

Certainly, many — perhaps most — people prefer to ignore reality in favor of feel-good fallacies. Mr. Cofnas believes this phenomenon is rooted in a “deep human impulse to conflate facts and moral values.” In other words, (positive) statements that describe the world as it is are often interpreted by people as (normative) statements that prescribe the world as it ought to be.

This fundamental confusion distorts debate and impedes progress. If Mr. Cofnas is correct that this cognitive dissonance is hardwired into us, then that makes the goal of evidence-based policy sadly unattainable.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


26 August, 2016

A new/old "privilege": Thin privilege

Kelsey Miller, who writes below, is fat (see above) and she envies the better treatment that thin women get.  And the everlasting Leftist grumble about "inequality" provides her with a peg to hang her envy on.  What she says below is that liking for thin bodies is unjust in that it offends against the equality doctrine and that we as individuals might not be able to change social values but we can be equally nice to fatties and slenders.  And it would be REALLY good if slender people could be made to feel guilty about being slender.  Let fatties rule!

Like all fat grumblers, she makes no enquiry about WHY slim is seen as better.  It's just something "society" does for inscrutable reasons.  As with Leftists generally, the fact that their dreams of a different world never come about, seems to escape her attention.  The world SHOULD be different and that is that!

But let us take a quick glance at why her dream will never come about.  Let us ask why this world is as it is.

It's old hat to go back to the cavemen but they probably do have a role here.  Slim people can run, jump and climb faster so are the ones most likely to catch a tasty animal for dinner.  And evolution is a slow burn so much of our behaviour and values reflect our caveman past.  It seems highly probable that natural selection has built into our genes a preference for slimness.  Fat-lovers are fighting a million years of human evolution.

Aha!  Someone will say:  How come fat women are ADMIRED in the poorer parts of the Arab world and China?  Where did their genes  go?

Human being are very flexible.  Witness the fact that fat ladies do normally acquire a husband.  The husband will mostly be short or a smoking, drinking, gambling type but he is male and does help to bring forth children.  In other words, there are circumstances in which the genetic influence can be overridden. In the absence of better alternatives the fatty may take on a man who is rejected by women with better alterantives. 

I once ran a large boarding house in a poor area and it was amusing to see the couples walking down the street in that area.  It was common to see  short, spherical women trotting alongside a short, thin and very scrubby man puffing on a fag (cigarette). Both had wisely compromised and gotten what they could:  A useless man and a lady prepared to tolerate a lot. At least they were not alone.

And such flexibility is observable in poor countries too.  In poor countries, the problem is food.  It seems strange to most of us in the modern world but, until quite recently, there were a lot of people everywhere who had to struggle to put bread on the table for their families.  And in some countries only a tiny elite escaped that position.   In those circumstances, food abundance was greatly admired.  Someone who had plenty of food was envied.

And what is sure evidence that the pesron is one of those who are blessed with lots of food?  Fat!  Fat was the mark of a prosperous and successful family.  So a fat lady was socially desirable.  She could open the door to FOOD!  A poor society is the fat woman's nirvana.

And I have seen it in operation.  I was walking along a street in Australia with a number of benches beside it.  And on one bench I came across a very amusing sight. There was a rather good looking man of Arab appearance who was clearly expressing great admiration and affection to the Caucasian woman he was sitting beside.  And the woman was very FAT!  And the look of utter confusion on her face was a treat.  Here was this handsome man being very nice to HER!  Why?  Why was she being treated as a great beauty?  She basically did not know what to do.  I walked on so saw no more of them so I will never know if she figured out that she really WAS beautiful to Arab eyes.

But in our bountiful societies none of that applies.  Other values, including caveman values, come into play.  And caveman values are only part of it.  Another really important value is YOUTH.  And those of us with creaky bones will emphatically assure you that youth is better.  But what is associated with youth?  Slimness.  In our teens, the great majority of us are slim.  But that does not usually last.  Even those of us who started out skinny do expand over time.  So admiration for slimness is largely an admiration for a youthful appearance and no amount of Leftist equality-mongering will change that

Fatties go to the back of the bus!  Actually, they are there already. It is easy to say that fat is a choice.  We can always diet to lose it.  But, as Kelsey Miller knows, that is easier said than done.  Separating a fatty from their food is almost impossible long term. 

So what can a fatty do?  One thing guaranteed to do no good at all is to write angry articles condemning “thin privilege”. So the really vital thing to do is to accept how the cookie crumbles.  Accept how the world about us works and adapt yourself to it as best you can. So for fat ladies, I would suggest that they re-evaluate that pesky short guy who seems to be the only one interested in you.  He may be the best you can get -- and half a loaf is better than  none.  Perhaps you can concentrate on his pretty eyes, or how well he plays the spoons, or something

If we claim to care about equality, then we must acknowledge this inequality, too: thin privilege.

What’s your gut reaction to that term? Defensiveness, anger, hope, curiosity? Before stepping further into this subject, I think it’s important to recognize where we’re all coming from.

When I hear the term “thin privilege,” my first response is anxiety. I feel anger and interest and hope as well, but first and foremost, I feel nervous when the subject comes up, because I am not a thin person.

Illogical as it may sound, naming another group’s privilege feels almost like picking on them. The thing to remember is that privilege isn’t about us as individuals. It’s about the system we all live inside. It’s no one’s fault, yet it is everyone’s responsibility.

“Acknowledging that you have privilege is not saying that your life hasn’t been difficult,” says Melissa Fabello, renowned body-acceptance activist, academic, and managing editor of Everyday Feminism. “It's simply acknowledging which obstacles you have not faced.”

As a thin person working in the realm of body activism, Fabello frequently affirms the obstacles she herself hasn’t faced.

For example, “when I walk onto a plane, I don’t have any thoughts about whether or not I'm going to be able to sit in the seat,” she says. Going to the doctor, she doesn’t deal with automatic assumptions about her health.

“It's always, ‘Okay, let's treat whatever issue you came in here for.’”

Fabello offers these examples with no caveat or defense. That’s a rare attitude when it comes to any topic about our bodies — particularly women’s bodies.

Because, for one thing, thin privilege doesn’t protect her from other harmful experiences and damaging beliefs. We live in a world that scrutinizes and judges women’s bodies, period. Furthermore, “our current cultural beauty ideal for women is this weird skinny-but-curvy thing,” she says.

The beauty standard has evolved in the past few decades (“in the latter half of the 20th century [it] was very stick-thin,” Fabello notes), but it hasn’t become any more flexible or generous. It used to require visible hip bones, and now it demands curves — but only in the “right places.” By its very nature, a beauty standard is exclusionary, and women of all sizes are vulnerable to it.

“That’s an issue of women's bodies being seen as public property. That’s an issue of women's bodies being seen through the lens of the male gaze,” says Fabello.

“It is not about size discrimination, which is a separate issue.”

In fact, this new twist in the beauty standard may be feeding the ever-growing elephant in this room: skinny shaming. While it is an entirely different topic, we cannot have a conversation about thin privilege or size bias without contending with skinny shaming. And that’s a problem.

While things like privilege and bias are systemic, shaming happens on an interpersonal level. It may be within your family, your peer group, or even your broader community. It’s simply a different form of harm.

“Oppression isn't one, two, five, or one hundred people saying something bad about your body or making you feel bad about your body.

That’s not oppression,” says Fabello, “Oppression is something that is woven into society so that it is inescapable.” That doesn’t make body shaming of any kind invalid or harmless — and no one is arguing that.

Yet, many thin people still present skinny shaming as a counterpoint in an argument that isn’t happening.

“I would say nine out of 10 times, thin people only complain about or bring up the concept of skinny shaming as a way to derail a conversation about fat shaming,” says Fabello.

They’ll offer evidence as if to say that their experience is exactly the same as a fat person’s. “You know, ‘Well, I'm so thin that when I go to the doctor they tell me I just have to gain weight.’

Or, ‘I can't shop in the average clothing store either. I have to buy kid's clothes, because they don’t make clothes in my size.’ They come up with these counter-examples, which then makes it a difficult conversation.”

Of course, anecdotes like this just don’t add up against the basic, big-picture facts: The world does not hold thinness and fatness as equal. “We are all socialized not to want a fat body,” says Fabello.

But stating the obvious is a fruitless tactic when faced with someone like this. If you can’t acknowledge these basic truths, “you’re not actually trying to learn or understand. You’re just on the defensive.”

We are all prone to that defensiveness. It’s a knee-jerk response when someone checks our privilege for us (see: #AllLivesMatter).

This is why the system hurts us all so deeply: It perverts our empathy into something fearful and selfish and utterly nonsensical.

When thin people argue like this, Fabello points out, they’re saying, “‘Well, what about me? I'm also shamed for my body, so therefore thin privilege can’t exist and fat oppression can’t exist because I have this experience.’”

That is why body positivity isn’t just about accepting your own body. It’s about actively acknowledging others’ — particularly those who don’t benefit from your own privilege.

Absolutely, it begins with self-acceptance. “We all need body acceptance,” Fabello reaffirms. “Everybody wants to have their own pain acknowledged and everybody should have their own pain acknowledged in whatever appropriate way there is.”

For her, that means being mindful of the room she’s in. “If people are hurt, then I think people need to have that conversation to heal.

But I think that it should be had within one privileged group and also with context.” Imagine an able-bodied person walking into a room full of quadriplegics, complaining about her broken arm.

Even better, imagine a straight, cis, white woman walking into a room full of queer, trans quadriplegics of color — and complaining about her broken arm.

When in doubt, remember to look for and note all the privileges we cannot see — or which we’ve been conditioned not to see.

It’s not an overt maliciousness, this blind spot in our vision. Shaming is overt. Privilege, like prejudice, is something so old and so ordinary; it’s the mottled lens through which we see everything.

It’s our idea of average. “And whenever we have an idea of an ‘average person,’ it's always someone who is the most privileged.”

The world is built around this idea of a person, and everyone else is an exception to be accommodated. Some accommodations are more easily made than others; the left-handed kid needs a lefty desk, so the teacher runs around looking for one, apologizing to the student because, of course, that’s only fair.

When it comes to something like size, it’s different. “You go to a restaurant and the table is nailed down to the ground,” says Fabello.

“There's this assumption that the blank-slate person who things are created for is a certain size.” It’s a bias you might not notice unless you’re pressed right up against it.

When you’re sitting comfortably, it takes effort to notice — and even more effort to question.

But really, it’s not that hard. The problem is that we take the word “privilege” so personally, when it’s not so much about you as it is us.

Actively acknowledging your own privilege isn’t saying, “I’m the bad guy.” It’s saying the system is bad. It does not invalidate your own pain, but validates the pain of others — which is just as real, though not as recognized.

In voicing that injustice, you are not giving up your seat at the table, but demanding a table at which all of us can sit with comfort and be heard.


Obama’s LGBT Agenda Suffers Loss in Case of Transgender Funeral Director

When families lose loved ones, they often seek out funeral homes for solace and comfort and, for people of faith, spiritual consolation as well.  At such a delicate time, the last thing grieving families expect is a debate over whether male funeral home employees should be allowed to dress like women at their loved one’s funeral.

But that is exactly the conflict President Barack Obama’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission set in motion when it sued Thomas Rost.

As a matter of faith, Rost, the owner of three funeral homes in Michigan, required his male and female employees to dress in keeping with the solemnity and sensitivity of funerals and burials.

Thankfully, a federal district court has vindicated Rost’s religious liberty in a well-reasoned decision under the nation’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

The conflict started when one of Rost’s male funeral directors stated in writing that he needed to be treated like a woman by others and informed Rost that from now on he would wear skirts while representing the funeral home, which included attendance at funerals.

Rost respectfully dismissed the funeral director, not because of who the employee was or anything he did outside work, but because Rost’s religious beliefs did not allow him to actively affirm a false sexual identity, or to have his business be the cause of distress and offense to mourners at their most vulnerable moments.

Rost, however, did not count on the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender agenda pushed by LGBT advocates and the Obama administration.

After the employee complained to the EEOC, the Obama administration sued Rost’s family funeral business, demanding that his employees be allowed to dress like the opposite sex whenever and wherever they wanted to, including at memorial services, or face damage awards and penalties.

Judge Sean F. Cox noted in his opinion that unless Rost violated his faith, the funeral home owner “would feel significant pressure to sell [the] business and give up [his] life’s calling of ministering to grieving people as a funeral home director and owner.”

No one should be put to such a choice.

Funeral homes seem like odd places for the Obama administration to take a stand against religious liberty. But similarly bad optics did not stop the administration from fighting the Little Sisters of the Poor, a Catholic order of nuns, all the way to the Supreme Court over Obamacare’s mandate that the order’s health plans cover abortion-inducing drugs.

It seems that when it comes to issues of sexual morality and identity—be it same-sex marriage, contraceptives, abortion, and now gender identity—the administration’s rule is that sexual autonomy must always win over religious liberty, even at church funerals and gravesites.

As my colleague Ryan T. Anderson and I have explained, the Obama administration has systematically misinterpreted bans on “sex discrimination” (both old and new) to mean “gender identity.”

From requiring male access to women’s and girls’ showers, dorms, and bathrooms in schools and universities, to regulating pronoun use in employment, to mandating sex reassignment surgeries under Obamacare, the administration has imposed a new gender ideology across the land with no basis in law and without the backing of the American people.

Obama’s policies insert the federal government into matters that are properly the domain of state and local authorities. They impose one-size-fits-all policies on the nation, they endanger privacy and safety, and they ignore the equality of all.

Parents, teachers, principals, hospitals, professionals, businesses and other employers, and local officials have been working out nuanced solutions that are respectful to all affected parties in this sensitive area. They should be allowed to continue to reach reasonable solutions without threats of lawsuits and funding cuts by the federal government.

The Obama administration should not force Americans to conform or be taken to court, fined, or stripped of funding.

Twenty-four states wisely have sued the administration over its threats, and a court in Texas has just ordered a halt to the administration’s ideologically driven attempt to rewrite the law unilaterally to include gender identity without congressional approval. The administration almost certainly will appeal and there is no guarantee as to the outcome, especially given a liberal-dominated judiciary.

This is why Congress can and should pass legislation to undo the confusion and harm unleashed by an overreaching executive branch and activist courts (stacked with liberal Obama appointees). That would be a major step toward restoring respect for the rule of law, federalism, and state, local, and private decision-making.

The Civil Rights Uniformity Act, recently introduced by Rep. Pete Olson, R-Texas, would do precisely that by assuring three simple things:

The word “sex” in antidiscrimination laws is not interpreted to mean “gender identity” or its equivalents.
The words “man” and “woman” in antidiscrimination laws refer to a person’s sex.

Gender identity and transgender status won’t be elevated to a special, protected class under civil rights laws without express congressional approval.

If passed, such a law would undo the Obama administration’s high-handedness and prevent future abuses of power by subsequent presidents and the courts.

Thomas Rost’s faith led him to dedicate his life to comforting and serving those who grieve. Because the Obama administration is likely to contest his victory on appeal, Rost and his life’s calling once again will be put in jeopardy by a steamrolling gender ideology that did not start, and will not stop, with funeral homes.

A law such as the Civil Rights Uniformity Act is needed now more than ever.


Boycotters Say New Target Transgender Policy Still Allows Predators ‘Easier Access to Their Victims’

Target plans to spend $20 million adding single-stall, lockable bathrooms to all store locations after a controversy over a new policy that allows transgender people to use the restroom and fitting room that correspond with the gender they self-identify with.

“Across the board, our goal is to make sure that everyone feels welcome at Target,” Katie Boylan, Target’s vice president of communications, told The Daily Signal.

In April, Target announced the new transgender policy. Boylan said Target has openly listened to guest feedback since then.

“The feedback has been mixed,” Boylan said. Some guests have been very supportive of the bathroom policy, while others “less so,” she said.

In response to the bathroom policy, over 1.4 million people signed a pledge to boycott Target.

“We committed in the spring to making sure that every store across the country has a single-stall, lockable restroom for those who would like to use it,” Boylan said. The remodels in Target’s 1,800 store locations across the country have been under way since then, she said, and will cost $20 million.

The American Family Association, a nonprofit that supports Christian values, started the pledge in April to boycott Target.

“Target’s announcement that it is installing unisex bathrooms does nothing to address the objections of more than 1.4 million customers who are boycotting the retail giant,” Ed Vitagliano, executive vice president of the American Family Association, said in a statement to The Daily Signal. He added:

While AFA did suggest single-occupancy, unisex bathrooms as a way to help the retailer’s transgender customers, our major concern was that Target’s policy would grant voyeurs and sexual predators easier access to their victims by allowing men in women’s restrooms and changing areas, which puts women and girls in danger.

“Target must maintain the gender-specific bathrooms as well—if the company is interested in guaranteeing the safety and privacy of women and girls who patronize the retailer’s stores.” —@AmericanFamAssc

In July, a man who identifies as a woman videotaped an 18-year-old girl in an Idaho Target dressing room. Authorities arrested and charged the man, age 43, who told police that he previously made other videos of women undressing, Time reported.

“Unisex bathrooms are fine, but Target must maintain the gender-specific bathrooms as well—if the company is interested in guaranteeing the safety and privacy of women and girls who patronize the retailer’s stores,” Vitagliano said.

The $20 million investment does not change Target’s fitting room policy and accommodations.

“This partial backtracking proves what everyone already knew, that Target lost customers in droves after it announced that men would be allowed full access to women’s intimate facilities at its stores,” Roger Severino, director of the Devos Center for Religion and Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal.

In the immediate two weeks following Target’s announcement of the policy, Target’s stock declined by 4.2 percent.

Target announced its second quarter earnings on Wednesday. Sales decreased by 7.2 percent from last year.

“We have no evidence that says the bathroom policy has had a material impact on our business at this time,” Boylan said.

The policy has had no impact on business in both the last financial quarter and this quarter, Boylan added.

“For too long big businesses like Target have put the interests of loud gender identity activists over the legitimate safety and privacy concerns of its everyday customers,” Heritage’s Severino said. “Target is of course free to do what it wants, but so are its customers, and it is an open question as to whether they will return given that men are still allowed into women’s spaces at Target even under the new policies.”


Federal judge temporarily blocks Obama’s transgender rules

A federal judge has blocked the Obama administration from enforcing new guidelines that were intended to expand restroom access for transgender students across the country.

Judge Reed O’Connor of the US District Court for the Northern District of Texas said in a 38-page ruling Sunday that the government had not complied with federal law when it issued “directives which contradict the existing legislative and regulatory text.”

O’Connor, whom President George W. Bush nominated to the federal bench, said the order should apply nationwide but analysts said its impact might be limited.

O’Connor said not granting an injunction would put states “in the position of either maintaining their current policies in the face of the federal government’s view that they are violating the law, or changing them to comply with the guidelines and cede their authority over this issue.”

The judge’s order, in a case brought by officials from more than a dozen states, is a victory for social conservatives in the continuing legal battles over the restroom guidelines, which the federal government issued this year.

The fight over the rights of transgender people, and especially their right to use public bathrooms consistent with their gender identities, has emerged as an emotional cause among social conservatives.

The Obama administration’s assertion that the rights of transgender people in public schools and workplaces are protected under existing laws against sex discrimination has been condemned by social conservatives, who said the administration was illegally intruding into local affairs and promoting a policy that would jeopardize the privacy and safety of schoolchildren.

The ruling could deter the administration from bringing new legal action against school districts that do not allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms of their choice.

“We are pleased that the court ruled against the Obama administration’s latest illegal federal overreach,” Attorney General Ken Paxton of Texas said in a statement on Monday. “This president is attempting to rewrite the laws enacted by the elected representatives of the people and is threatening to take away federal funding from schools to force them to conform.”

A spokeswoman for the Justice Department, Dena W. Iverson, said the department was disappointed with the decision and was reviewing its options.

In a statement, several civil rights organizations that had submitted a brief opposing the injunction called the ruling unfortunate and premature.

“A ruling by a single judge in one circuit cannot and does not undo the years of clear legal precedent nationwide establishing that transgender students have the right to go to school without being singled out for discrimination,” the groups — Lambda Legal; the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Texas; the National Center for Lesbian Rights; the Transgender Law Center; and GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders — said in their statement.

The ultimate impact of the Texas decision is unclear and likely to be limited, legal analysts said. More senior courts in other regions have agreed with the administration that transgender students and workers are protected by existing laws against sex discrimination, and their decisions will not be altered by the Texas ruling.

Also, the decision will not necessarily affect the outcome of other current cases.

In the most prominent one, a federal court in North Carolina is weighing almost identical issues in suits brought by civil rights groups and the Department of Justice that seek to block a state law requiring people in government buildings, including public schools, to use bathrooms that correspond to the gender listed on their birth certificates.

Adding another major note of uncertainty, the US Supreme Court has temporarily blocked a decision by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals that required a school district in Virginia to allow a transgender boy to use the boys’ bathrooms. The Supreme Court issued a temporary injunction until it decides, probably this fall, whether to hear the case.

If the Supreme Court does take the case and reaches a majority decision one way or another, then existing rulings by district and appeals courts could be superseded. If the Supreme Court takes the Virginia case but then is divided, 4 to 4, on the issues, the Fourth Circuit’s existing decision in favor of transgender rights would take effect, although it would not be a nationally binding precedent.

The Texas lawsuit, filed by Paxton on behalf of officials in 13 states, argued that the Obama administration had overstepped its authority in a series of pronouncements in recent years, holding that discrimination against transgender people is a violation of existing laws against sex discrimination, including Title IX in federal education laws and Title VII in federal civil rights laws governing the workplace.

In May, in the latest such statement, the federal departments of Justice and Education issued a joint letter to public schools stating that transgender people should be free to use bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identities and that schools which refuse could lose federal funds.

The letter was quickly condemned by social conservatives, leading numerous state governments and school districts around the country to file lawsuits seeking to prevent the administration from taking action.

The Obama administration, seeking to deflect the Texas lawsuit and another brought by 10 other states, argued that the directive was not a regulation or mandate but rather an explanation of how the administration interpreted existing sex-discrimination protections. But it carried a threat that the administration might sue noncompliant school districts and seek to cut off vital federal education aid.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


23 August, 2016

Muslim values at work in Australia

On January 16, 2015, a visibly shaken Leila Alavi hung up the phone after taking a call from her estranged husband.

Prosecutors say the 26-year-old turned to a colleague and told him: "He said he is going to kill me and all of us. Probably he is watching too many movies."

By morning, she was dead.

In the carpark below the western Sydney hairdressing salon where she worked, Mokhtar Hosseiniamraei stabbed his wife 56 times with a pair of scissors he had stolen from a nearby supermarket.

"That moment. Like a bomb. It exploded. I didn't realise what I was doing for a moment," he would later tell a forensic psychiatrist.

But in the hours after the stabbing on January 17, 2015, when police asked him through an interpreter why he had killed Ms Alavi, Hosseiniamraei was frank: "Because we were married, and ... she broke the contract. I could not tolerate it.

"And I could not forget it."

Documents tendered in the NSW Supreme Court on Thursday tell of the devastating loss suffered by Ms Alavi's loved ones, and the broken logic with which her killer tried to explain what he had done.

"Where did you hit her with scissors on her body?" police asked Hosseiniamraei.

"In her heart and in her neck. Because she did not obey the rule of marriage," the killer replied.

"When we marry we have a commitment, moral commitment towards one another. In this country this means nothing."

He has since pleaded guilty to murdering Ms Alavi.

Hosseiniamraei, a refugee who fled Iran because of religious persecution, met his bride in Turkey and travelled with her to Australia in 2010.

By late 2014 the relationship had broken down and Hosseiniamraei was abusing drugs daily.

A psychiatrist who interviewed the 34-year-old noted he had been using heroin and ice almost every day around that time, and was smoking up to 28 joints of cannabis a week.

Ms Alavi sought a restraining order on October 2014, but documents before the court indicate the couple continued to see one another regularly.

Even after their separation, Ms Alavi continued to visit Hosseiniamraei to cook and clean for him, according to the offender's sister.

Now the dead woman's relatives have questioned why more was not done to keep her safe.

In a victim impact statement tendered in court on Thursday, Ms Alavi's sister Marjan Lotfi wrote that the grief of losing her was "almost unbearable".

"I don't want other women to suffer the same tragedy. I don't want other family members to go through what I and my family have gone through," she wrote.

"I keep thinking: why didn't someone help her? Why didn't she receive the protection she needed?"

Another sister, Mitra Alavi, said she and Leila had left Iran to escape violence. She said she had worried for years about her little sister's relationship with Hosseiniamraei.

"I saw that she was abused both physically and psychologically by him. I believe this man was cruel and dangerous," she wrote.


What Conservatives Did to Pull Off Religious Liberty Win in California

California conservatives won a surprise victory this week, changing a state assembly bill that would have curtailed the freedom of private religious colleges.

“We literally were able to see tens of thousands of people mobilize to make calls and to write their legislators, and to participate in the political process,” William Jessup University President John Jackson told The Daily Signal in a phone interview.

“We were hearing from legislators who said that they had gotten hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of phone calls on just this one piece of legislation,” he added. “And I think that’s a tremendous, tremendous encouragement to me for the health of our state.”

It’s a victory that they hope will prove a bellwether for institutional liberty fights to come.

Facing a maelstrom of grassroots controversy, state Sen. Ricardo Lara, a Democrat, said Wednesday that he would remove the portions of his bill, SB 1146, that would have harmed the right of religious colleges to operate according to their principles.

Under the previous wording, SB 1146 would have ultimately blocked low-income students from receiving Cal Grants, California’s system of need-based education aid, if they attended colleges with policies such as bathroom use based on biological sex that violated the state’s LGBT policies. It also would have enabled students who feel discriminated against in light of these policies to bring a lawsuit against their college.

“Without a doubt, the unmodified version [of the bill] would have jeopardized Christian institutions and egregiously penalized all students of faith, especially Latino and African-American individuals,” Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, said in a statement.

Conservatives who opposed the measure say they are relieved by this change, but some stressed that the current version of the bill, while less concerning, may still negatively impact religious colleges. Jackson mentioned a new amendment that would make religious colleges release data on expelled students—ostensibly to ensure they were not expelled for discriminatory reasons.

“What we’ve indicated to the senator [Lara] is that we’ll have to review the bill and compare it to [Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act] regulations,” Jackson said.

But religious liberty activists say they are pleased to have an effective blueprint for success as that battle progresses, a blueprint that involves building national coalitions focused on preserving the rights of religious Americans.

In addition to grassroots mobilization, conservative nonprofits also played a pivotal role in the controversy.

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty publicized the fact that three of four students affected by the loss of Cal Grants would be low-income minority students, circulating a petition that quickly garnered 100,000 signatures.

With an open statement, Andrew Walker’s, the director of policy studies at the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, commission publicly opposed the bill with the support of a diverse group of advocates and thinkers both on the ideological left and on the right. Notable signatories included law professors, administrators at religious colleges, Hispanic and Islamic leaders, seminary presidents, Christian denominational authorities, intellectuals at think tanks (including three from The Heritage Foundation), and conservative magazines.

The statement was publicly released on Tuesday. On Wednesday, Lara announced that he was changing the provisions.

“I just think that this was a multifaceted effort that really showed what effective communication and strategy can result in,” Walker told The Daily Signal in a phone interview. “You get your national coalitions working with your people on the ground, coupled with strong messaging—and religious liberty, we found out, is not dead in California.”

Continued defeats on issues of individual conscience, Walker said, showed that advocates of religious freedom still have a long way to go. But as lawmakers nationwide begin to bicker over the limits of freedom of conscience for religious institutions, the changes to SB 1146 represent a heartening opening salvo.

“There’s one discussion about private citizens engaged in commercial acts, like the bakers and the florists and the photographers, but what we see here is that the ability to protect religious institutions and their religious integrity remains very intact and very strong,” he said. “We’re going to have to turn especially and fight on all fronts, and that includes institutionally. We had a large institutional win in California.”

Jackson and Walker also stressed that conservatives must remain vigilant to oppose similar encroachments in the future.

“The sponsor of this bill has said that he intends to study this issue at further depth, and possibly reintroduce legislation like this next year,” Walker said. “We’re not naïve to the fact that this is an ongoing battle.”


Political Correctness Has Skewed Our Understanding Of Racism

By Hsin-Yi Lo, Melbourne-based writer and freelance journalist

Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres has caused a storm when she posted an edited photo of Usain Bolt carrying her on his back with the tweet saying, "this is how I'm running errands from now on." But critics have taken the post amiss and blitzed the comedienne on social media demanding her to take off the post. Political correctness is once again the culprit that's killed our joy to make witty jokes, and the parameters of what actually constitutes racism.

PC started in the 1970s which was the era that spawned a generation of activists crusading against institutionalised thoughts that discriminate ethnic minorities, and people from different sexual orientations, religion and physical abilities. Credit should be given to the movement since it has corrected derogatory words like the N-word, and replacing it with 'Afro-American'. PC has also encouraged us to use gender indeterminate descriptions for jobs i.e. chairperson and businessperson so we don't subconsciously think that only males dominate particular roles.

As we live in a more pluralistic world, we should try to eliminate prejudice for the sake of social harmony. But PC has inadvertently bred a "I'm so easily offended" culture where we blow things out of proportion. This year Red Cross' pool safety poster for children came under fire because there were more 'coloured children' portrayed as the naughty kids. If we must be PC about this, could this poster be racist when there are 'white children' also illustrated as disobedient and there is a 'coloured' safety instructor?

Like DeGeneres' post, humour, wit or good intentions are mistaken for spite and racism. In Australia we're encouraged to be more culturally aware in our day-to-day interactions. This also extends to avoiding the greeting 'Merry Christmas' because it could potentially offend non-Christians and give out the idea that only Christmas is celebrated across the country. Instead, we should use religiously-neutral salutes like 'Seasons Greetings'.

I don't have a religion myself, but I don't mind when friends and associates say Merry Christmas to me because I know they wish me well. I also remember when I was studying in the UK, one of my flatmates kindly put a small Christmas tree in the kitchen so those who were alone wouldn't feel desolate and bleak.

In the immortal words of George W Bush: "The notion of political correctness has ignited controversy across the land. And although the movement arises from the laudable desire to sweep away the debris of racism and sexism and hatred, it replaces old prejudice with new ones. It declares certain topics off-limits, certain expression off-limits, even certain gestures off-limits".

PC has barred us from openly discussing race, religion, sexuality, etc. If freedom of expression is limited, we lose opportunities to explore more about ourselves, society and the world. Examples include criticism over Hollywood's decision to cast Scarlett Johansson as Major Motoko in 'Ghost in the Shell'. According to political correctness, Major Motoko is exclusively Asian even though the character sports a set of blue eyes. I'm also denied the freedom to have open discussions about mixed marriages.

We're also obsessed with finding the perfect description to identify non-white Australians. The word 'ethnic' is considered racist because it implies non-white Australians are 'backwards' and separate from the 'default' Australian race – the white Australians. There are multiple interpretations of the word ethnic, but essentially it describes groups of people who share a common religion, race, cultural heritage and language. To replace it, we used NESB (non-English speaking background) to define non-white Australians.

Unfortunately, NESB didn't fit the shoe because the term hints that second generation migrant Australians could be included. And now, we've got CALD (culturally and linguistically diverse background) – a seemingly immaculate description for non-whites. But with PC's high alert on race and ethnicity – it's hard to address the implications this phrase brings.

I remember I had a debate with a member of the PC brigade who didn't accept that 'CALD' also suggests that Irish-Australians or even Anglo-Australians could be included. And if non-whites have exclusive membership to the CALD club, then we've contradicted ourselves because we're maintaining that there is a divide between whites and non-whites. Since the word ethnic and CALD serves the same purpose, 'ethnic' should be a foul word. As humans we tend to categorise people, who are dissimilar to us, according to their different traits. Through this, this is how we can openly learn about others who are different from us.

Unfortunately, black slavery is part of our world history and it's understandable we're more vigilant when it comes to race relations between black and white people. But now we don't have a proper sense of what bigotry really means, and we've become so preoccupied with taking the self-righteous moral high ground we're carelessly labelling people someone as racist without understanding the full consequences.


Australia: A racist who was distraught to be called a racist

She seemed to think that it was reasonable to fight racial discrimination by discriminating racially

Cindy Prior, 49, has bittersweet memories of her childhood in a loving family with nine brothers and sisters.

Her parents were Aboriginal, members of the Noongar tribe. They enrolled her in a primary school in Bunbury, Western Australia, and at a high school in the mining town of Kalgoorlie.

In her affidavit in a Racial Discrimination Act section 18C case she brought against Queensland University of Technology students, from whom she is seeking $250,000 in damages, Prior describes formative experiences and events in her life, including racism, before her employment as an administrative officer in QUT’s indigenous-only Oodgeroo Unit in Brisbane.

Her school years, she recalls, were a “challenging time for me and other Aboriginal students due to the perception and racist attitudes of non-indigenous students and some teachers towards us”. “When I started school I made friends with both white and Aboriginal students. Racism in the playground and in the class was a daily occurrence, but surrounded by my big cousins and sister, we stuck up for each other and supported each other. I was above average in all of my classes but as I looked around there were no Aboriginal students in any of my (high school) classes and I deliberately began to fail so that I could be in the same classes as them. I was a quiet, well-liked ­student and had made friends with both white and Aboriginal ­people.”

Prior, who left at the end of Year 10, describes an “extremely disadvantaged” upbringing of her parents. She says her parents were restricted from going to school (except for mission schools) ­because of segregation policies.

Prior worked in a Kalgoorlie shop. Married at 23, she had three children. She says she became sole carer of her now adult children ­following the 2014 death in a car accident of their father, whom she had divorced. She wanted to do an arts degree majoring in human rights, ethics and Australian studies until illness scotched those plans.

At the heart of her affidavit is the reason for it being sworn in the first place: “the 28 May 2013 incident”, the catalyst for her action against the students in an ongoing case that The Weekend Australian has been reporting since it burst into public consciousness in February this year. It is this vexing case that has begun a public debate about 18C’s impact on free speech, posing a challenge for Malcolm Turnbull as he comes under growing pressure to make good on promises he had quietly made to fellow parliamentarians to reform 18C if he replaced Tony Abbott as prime minister. The QUT case is being cited by ­reform-minded federal Liberal politicians, including Abbott, James Paterson, Tim Wilson and Cory Bernardi, along with independent conservatives such as Bob Day and David Leyonhjelm.

The case confounds some of the arguments of supporters of 18C because, on what is known from public filings and other material, it is still going three years later while causing significant financial, reputational and emotional cost to those caught in it and to taxpayers. The unanswered question is to what extent Prior’s family circumstances have contributed to her ­reliance on 18C against the students, reinforcing concerns of some that the legislative provision can be used to address past hurts and unrelated grievances.

Attorney-General ­George Brandis, a Queensland senator, has been conspicuous by his ­silence on the case and its implications for free speech as a result of 18C, which makes it unlawful for anyone to “offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate” another person or group on the grounds of “race, colour or ethnicity”.

In the beginning, according to Prior, colleague Naomi Franks, a learning support officer in the uni, appeared “hesitant and uncertain” on May 28, 2013. She was worried as she told Prior: “There are some people in the computer lab and I don’t think they’re indigenous. Love, you do it.”

Prior, who oversaw reception for the indigenous-only “safe space”, replied: “I’ll deal with it.’’ She says she saw “three young white men I did not recognise at all”, and to one of them, Alex Wood, a fee-paying student who had unknowingly entered the unit to try to access a computer, she asked: “Hi, are you indigenous?’’

Wood: “No, we’re not.’’

Prior: “Ah, this is the Oodgeroo Unit, it’s an indigenous space for indigenous students at QUT. There are other computer labs in the university you can use.’’

Prior says the students said nothing. They packed their gear. Prior had made it plain that they needed to go, however, she insists: “I didn’t ask them to leave because I didn’t want to embarrass them in a black space. They simply left and I thought that that was that.’’

She says she continued working. A few hours later an indigenous student went to her with concerns that comments had been posted to a Facebook site, called QUT Stalker Space, about the eviction of Wood and his two friends from the Oodgeroo Unit. She says there were tears in the unit as the comments were read by the indigenous staff and students.

Wood, in what he saw as a legitimate, uncontroversial exercise of free speech, had written: “Just got kicked out of the unsigned ­indigenous computer room. QUT (is) stopping segregation with segregation.”

Jackson Powell wrote sarcastically: “I wonder where the white supremacist computer lab is.”

One post that was obviously ­offensive — “ITT niggers” — came from a Facebook profile bearing the name of student Calum Thwaites, who had not been near the Oodgeroo Unit. He immediately reported to Facebook and QUT that the Facebook profile had never belonged to him; he would never write such words; and that someone had set him up as part of a student prank.

In her affidavit of 285 pages, including exhibits, earlier this year, Prior recalls: “I was terribly upset and angry. I dread the word ‘nigger’. It is the ultimate racist taunt.”

She and colleagues had printed and screenshot the thread, which was circulated to university management, including the unit’s ­director, Lee Hong, and Mary Kelly, the director of equity. One of Prior’s contacts in the Faculty of Law Project offered her a “safe space” and observed in an email: “I guess it just reinforces what we all know to be true for this place.”

Prior went home and downloaded the posts. She became more upset as she read some students expressing their opinions that an indigenous-only unit was unhelpful because it perpetuated inequality, and resulted in “chronic self-consciousness and feelings of inferiority for Aboriginal people”. She says she became anxious at work the next day. “I had barely slept.” The reference to “white ­supremacists” in the sarcastic post of Powell left her, she says, with a “visceral reaction”, and a “primal fear of images of white hoods and burning crosses”. She says she feared being physically assaulted “if word got out that I was the person” who had turned away Wood. She raised with five managers her security needs as “interim measures for our safety and students” including the activation of swipe-card access. She says she felt “at risk of imminent but unpredictable physical or verbal assault”.

Prior says she was “furious, distraught, upset and emotionally drained” after she had read that QUT academic Sharon Hayes had speculated in an online post that Prior could have breached regulations by questioning Wood and the other two students about whether they were indigenous. Prior went to a doctor and was medically certified as unfit for work. Her initial doctor wrote: “Cynthia feels unsafe and frightened to return to work.”

Ten days after the students walked into the Oodgeroo Unit, a second doctor issued a workers’ compensation certificate declaring her unfit for work due to “nightmares, fear and sweating”. Four days later, Prior, who has not returned to the unit in the three years since the incident, told QUT she would be taking the matter to the Human Rights Commission. She felt “disheartened and powerless” because the university and its vice-chancellor, Peter Coaldrake, had made public statements about the incident and directed new strategies, which did not go far enough in her view. She felt “the critical issue of how to get me back to work and feeling safe once again” was being avoided.

Prior says she was too stressed to meet Kelly at QUT so they met elsewhere, where the director of equity told her and a witness friend “there were only two or three comments that were clear-cut racist”; “you might wanna check out what racial vilification is before you jump in”; and “with the small amount of contact I’ve had with these students it is very clear that they were not racist”. Prior says she felt “physically sick and abandoned”; she “could not understand how or why the students had not already been suspended or disciplined”; and “felt I had been warned off” from taking it further.

On August 1, 2013, Prior described her anxiety and workplace fears to another doctor, who wrote she was “reporting extremely ­severe levels of depression and anxiety, and severe levels of stress”. A subsequent medical tribunal assessment concluded Prior was “not feeling good about her identity, her people, or her culture”, as she accepted the incident had ended her career.

After going in 2014 to the HRC with her formal complaint against seven students under the Racial Discrimination Act’s section 18C, Prior and her Brisbane solicitor, Susan Moriarty, prepared for confidential settlement talks, and commission-sponsored conciliation. The Weekend Australian has established that a number of students in the original legal action, helped by their parents in some cases, paid thousands of dollars to be released from the complaint.

The students strenuously denied being racists or expressing racist views, but before their ­careers had started they feared their reputations and job prospects would be destroyed by anything linking them to the mere ­accusation of racism. The three students left in the case — Wood, Powell and Thwaites, who also deny racism — were not told by the commission until shortly ­before a compulsory conciliation conference in August 2015 that they were accused of racial hatred and faced public naming and shaming. The three students had minimal funds and could not ­afford legal representation. Their lives have been disrupted by the threat of being effectively convicted of racism with all of its attendant ugliness.

The commission ruled last year there was no prospect of a resolution, resulting in the case being advanced to the Federal Circuit Court where the students are being represented pro bono by Tony Morris QC and Michael Henry, both of whom have taken a robust approach to Prior, QUT and the commission over their conduct, evidence and actions. This has led to HRC president Gillian Triggs appointing an external lawyer at taxpayers’ expense, Angus Stewart SC, to run an inquiry into allegations that the commission itself had breached the students’ human rights, with Triggs and her staff acting “disgracefully” — claims they deny.

For Prior, who faces potentially massive orders for legal costs as Federal Circuit Court judge ­Michael Jarrett prepares to rule on whether her action under section 18C should be dismissed, and her lawyers, the case is black and white. But whatever the hurt and offence she insists she felt in late May 2013 over some Facebook posts, public responses to the subsequent 18C legal action and its demand for $250,000 in damages from the students have been significantly more frank and unsympathetic. Many people believe the students were the victims of ­racism because of their eviction.

The words “free speech” are not a feature of Prior’s affidavit, but in the last paragraph she says: “I am deeply disappointed that my private case has now become public, and I have been publicly vilified by people I don’t even know or who know me, or who don’t know the full story which led to the ending of my career at QUT. Whilst I desperately wanted to return to work it became clear each day that passed that this might never happen. I used to check my email every day to hear from somebody until in the end I just gave up.”



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


22 August, 2016

Don’t Tread on Me

News item: "The EEOC is investigating whether the Revolutionary War-era Gadsden Flag ["Don't Tread on Me"] could be considered a racist symbol in the workplace."

Back in the 1960s, American Marxists gave up trying to instigate an uprising of American workers against their employers and turned their efforts, instead, toward exploiting existing divisions within society, as between blacks and whites, and toward creating new ones, as between men and women. Thus began the cultural revolution. It continues apace, as the news item above attests.

Political correctness is an essential element of the left's strategy for carrying out their cultural revolution. Americans should understand how it works.

In the name of justice and equality, ostensibly, the left has assembled various and sundry "oppressed" groups into a coalition of the aggrieved. Each group is equipped with a script that explains and justifies its grievance against American culture.

For example:

Most of the dysfunction within black communities is a consequence of white racism.

Except for their anatomical differences, men and women are identical. Any difference between how they function in the world is a consequence of conditioning by patriarchal society.

Homosexuality is an un-chosen condition, and it is a normal and physchologically healthy alternative to heterosexuality. Any unhappiness that homosexuals experience regarding their sexuality derives from heterosexuals' failure to accept them.

International borders are just lines on a map. They should not be allowed to prevent human beings from coming to the United States to seek a better life.

Muslims from the Middle East and Africa are peace-loving individuals who, except for some of their religious practices, are indistinguishable from American Methodists and Baptists.

It is possible for a male validly to consider himself female, and for a female validly to consider herself male. 

Police throughout America are wantonly murdering young black men.

Honest people can disagree about some of these propositions. In a free country, they should be able to voice their disagreement without fear of recrimination, and to act accordingly. A Christian baker should be free to decide for himself whether to bake a wedding cake for a homosexual couple. But the advocates of tolerance on the left tolerate no disagreement.

The scripts are composed not necessarily to identify the truth, but to serve the interests of their respective groups, as understood by the authors of the scripts. Each group retains editorial control over its own script. Debates might arise occasionally within a group as to the contents of their script, but no one outside the group is permitted to question the content of a script.

The scripts operate very much as the Party line from Moscow once operated for American Communists, and the similarity is far from coincidental. The difference, though, is that these scripts are intended to be the final word on each group not only for the party faithful, but for the rest of America, as well. Anyone who dares to contradict a script is vilified as a hater and is ostracized by the media-Hollywood-academic complex, who function as a kind of ideological Mafia. 

How does all this serve the neo-Marxist cultural revolution? Americans are being forced to adjust their culture to comport with each group's script. White employers are forced to hire black workers, even at the expense of the employers' liberties (hence the existence of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission). Christian bakers are forced to bake wedding cakes for homosexual couples wishing to "marry." The Little Sisters of the Poor are forced to subsidize contraception and abortion services for their lay women employees, even at the expense of their Catholic beliefs. Americans must welcome large numbers of Muslim refugees, even if it means living under the constant threat of terrorist assassination within our borders. Schoolgirls must welcome sexually confused boys into their bath and locker rooms, despite thousands of years of cultural practice to the contrary.

And if a black worker feels harassed by the display of the Gadsden Flag in his place of work, because the flag was once displayed by some white supremacists who attacked police in Las Vegas, then the EEOC must consider outlawing the Gadsden Flag in the workplace, free speech be damned.

The cultural revolutionaries' agenda is not limited to exploiting the grievances of their various client groups. They maintain a politically correct script on many other matters, notable among them guns, sex, and the environment.

Private ownership of guns is bad.

Any connection between sex and moral values is arbitrary.

Pollution must be eradicated, resources must be conserved, and land and wildlife must be preserved, even at the cost of our rights and our industrial economy.

Next to her Constitution, America's most distinctive cultural artifact is her industrial economy. The extinguishing of that economy in the name of saving the environment numbers among the most devastating changes so far inflicted by the cultural revolution.

And speaking of flags, if you thought that removing the Confederate Battle flag from the state capitols of Alabama and South Carolina would end the cultural cleansing, think again. The removal of this symbol of a distinct American culture from those public places was just the beginning. You can bet that, if the left succeed in outlawing "hate speech," then any display of the Confederate flag will be outlawed, as well. (The EEOC has already outlawed it in the workplace.)

Indeed, it is now open season on the many other symbols of the Confederacy that dot our landscape, including the magnificent monument at Stone Mountain, Georgia. (The Taliban aren't the only ones who would demolish monuments.) The same goes for our many cultural artifacts that have a connection to slavery. Yale University has just renamed a dining hall that formerly carried the name of slave owner and Yale alumnus, John C. Calhoun. All the monuments to and places named for slave owners Washington and Jefferson are obvious targets, and the latter is already in the left's crosshairs.

But Washington, Jefferson, and the Confederacy won't be the end of it, not by a long shot. There is much of Christianity that remains to be got rid of, even after a half century of attacks. The EEOC recently tried, for example, to ban the crucifix from the workplace. (One of the most harmful constitutional developments in American history has been the transforming of private property that is used for commercial purposes into pseudo-public property that is thereby rendered subject to all manner of government regulation.)

According to a recent video about PC censorship at Brown University, an orientation pamphlet for new students refered to the displaying of the oil portraits of Brown's past presidents in a lecture hall as a "micro-aggression," because, until very recently, the portraits depicted only white males. Eliminate the white male influence, and there won't be much left of our history or our culture. The left intend to wipe the slate clean, then they'll be free to build their workers' paradise.

The neo-Marxists are nothing if not sanctimonious about the positions staked out in their scripts. But given the tenuous connection of those scripts to the truth, and given the left's determination to force their orthodoxy upon others, and given their fascistic silencing of any voices who would oppose them, especially on college campuses, the left's pretensions to moral superiority are as specious as their scripts. Sure, they are against racism, except when it is practiced by their allies. Sure, they are against hate, except when it is directed against their opponents.

Those who should be defending American culture, on the other hand, genuinely value racial equality, abhor racism, and would hate to be identified as racist. They are willing to surrender a great deal-far too much-to see the "oppressed" treated fairly. So their virtues become weapons that the left uses against them. The whole edifice of political correctness would come tumbling down, and the neo-Marxist cultural revolution would fizzle out, if only Americans would cease to take seriously the left's bluster and lies.

Donald Trump, for all his faults, has performed heroically in challenging the orthodoxy of political correctness. We need many more to do the same. But we also need many more to explain to the American people the terribly damaging scam that is being perpetrated upon them under the banner of political correctness.

In the long run, the banning of the Gadsden flag from the workplace would mean no more to the left than the overrunning of a small village in eastern France meant to the Nazis in 1940. The Nazis meant to have all of France, and the left mean to obliterate every vestige of individualism, liberty, and capitalism from the American landscape. Any attempt to appease them just emboldens them. At some point, we must stand and fight.


Administration to Issue Regulation Making All Federal Bathrooms Available to Transgenders

The Obama Administration will be publishing a new regulation in the Federal Register on Thursday that “makes it clear that an individual can use whichever restroom matches their gender identity,” Ashley Nash-Hahn, a spokeswoman for the General Services Administration (GSA), told CNSNews.com.

The Federal Management Regulation bulletin “clarifies that existing civil rights law and regulation explicitly applies to all federal locations under the jurisdiction, custody, or control of General Services Administration,” Nash-Hahn confirmed.

“The bulletin applies to the approximately 9,200 Federal locations under GSA's purview,” she said, noting that this new regulation will affect all federal facilities across the country.

“These spaces include various federal buildings in Washington, D.C, such as the GSA Central Office, courthouses throughout the country, and Social Security offices nationwide,” Nash-Hahn said.

She added that the regulation comes after federal agencies “interpreted prohibitions against sex discrimination under various federal civil rights laws and regulations,” including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Department of Education (ED) and Department of Justice (DOJ).

The temporary bulletin written by GSA Administrator Denise Turner-Roth notes that the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has issued guidance specifically for transgender persons who have not undergone any medical procedures to alter the gender they had at birth.

The guidance states in part: “OPM recognizes that a person does not need to undergo any medical procedure to be considered a transgender man or a transgender woman.”

“The self-identification of gender identity by any individual is sufficient to establish which restroom or other single-sex facilities should be used,” the temporary bulletin states.

“Federal agencies may not restrict only transgender individuals to only use single-occupancy restrooms, such as family or accessible facilities open to all genders,” it continues.

“However, Federal agencies may make individual-user options available to all individuals who voluntarily seek additional privacy.”


The Future of Women in Marine officer training

To pretty much no one’s surprise, female Marines went 0-29 over the course of a nearly three year experiment to evaluate female participation in the Marine Corps' Infantry Officer Course, a prerequisite to serving as a Marine infantry officer. Although most of the attention will be focused on the first number — the goose egg — the second number also prompts some questions. The Marine Corps' stated goal at the beginning of the process was for 100 female volunteers to attempt the course. Despite significantly broadening the eligible pool of applicants midway through the experiment, less than one-third of the desired number chose to participate.

The majority of the females failed to successfully navigate the Endurance Course, a screening event conducted during the first week of the program that also claims a fair number of male aspirants. The final female candidate was one of the first to pass the Endurance Course, but was eventually dropped for failing to complete two conditioning hikes. Both events and associated standards are based on situations Marine infantry officers have encountered and can expect to encounter on the world’s most unforgiving testing ground — the battlefield — and both highlight the significant physiological (i.e., “proven science”) differences between men and women.

Having done their best to run an objective assessment, most observers expect the Marine Corps to be told that its standards are too high and that gender equity is much more important to national security than victory in combat or even preserving lives. Just kidding. Gender equity proponents will use Newspeak that suggests the standards won’t be lowered at all, just “adjusted” to more accurately reflect increased capabilities legions of females will bring to the infantry … but if our inherently unjust patriarchal society gets taken down a notch or two, that’s OK too.

As retired Marine General John Kelly observed, “If we don’t change standards, it will be very, very difficult to have … any real numbers [of women] come into the infantry.” That will be particularly true if females aren’t interested in serving as infantry officers, which is one of the obvious takeaways from the experiment. While the timing is uncertain, it’s not hard to predict the eventual outcome (especially if Hillary Clinton is in the Oval Office come January): bureaucrats who have no concept of what it takes to fight, survive and win on the battlefield — and most of whom have no interest in serving themselves — will impose more “reasonable” standards on the Marine Corps. The real question will be whether these bureaucrats really support a woman’s right to choose, or if they will also force the Marine Corps to involuntarily assign women to a role many may not find particularly appealing.


Texas Judge Victorious Over Atheist Group in Prayer Dispute

Chaplains opening court hearings with prayer doesn't violate the Constitution, a Texas attorney general opinion finds.

Judge Wayne Mack, a justice of the peace in Montgomery County, Texas, recalls several people  telling him they were initially worried about coming before his court, but after the chaplain’s prayer opened the proceedings, they felt better.

“It was clear it would be a solemn event and they knew I would be fair,” Mack told The Daily Signal in a phone interview a day after the Texas attorney general’s opinion held that opening court with a chaplain’s prayer and the voluntary chaplain program Mack established were constitutional.

Mack started a voluntary chaplaincy program that has more than 60 clergymen participating, including Christians, Jews, Hindus, and people of other faiths. It openly invites, “all religious leaders of any faith in to participate.”

As a justice of the peace, Mack also serves as the coroner for the Montgomery County. It was in this duty that he first implemented the voluntary chaplain program, after finding himself not always able to console people when he had to be first on the scene for deaths.

In a six-page opinion issued Monday, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton noted the 2014 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the case of Town of Greece v. Galloway, which determined that initiating local government meetings with prayer did not violate the Establishment Clause of the Constitution. The Establishment Clause of the Constitution states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof … ”

Paxton compared Mack’s courtroom with the Town of Greece, New York, writing, “In both instances, religious leaders of any faith are invited to deliver a prayer at the beginning of proceedings.”

“A court would likely conclude that a justice of the peace’s practice of opening daily court proceedings with a prayer by a volunteer chaplain as you describe is sufficiently similar to the facts in Galloway such that the practice does not violate the Establishment Clause,” the opinion reads.

He added, “A court would likely conclude that the volunteer chaplain program you describe, which allows religious leaders to provide counseling to individuals in distress upon request, does not violate the Establishment Clause.”

The Paxton opinion cited lower court rulings on chaplain programs.

“Courts in other jurisdictions have likewise upheld the hiring of chaplains by a county hospital, prisons, and military establishments in order to provide counseling and guidance to individuals who request it,” the opinion said.

It added, “In each of these cases, the chaplains were paid by public funds, creating more significant Establishment Clause concerns than exist here, where the chaplains serve on a voluntary basis without cost to the taxpayer and only upon request of those who wish to receive the chaplain’s assistance.”

The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation isn’t happy with the opinion, but asserts that the matter is likely over because two individuals who regularly appear before the court felt “fearful” about how Mack would judge their case and are not willing to file a suit.

“We are confident that if we could bring this [case] before a federal judge, we could prove this far exceeds precedent, but we can’t do that without a plaintiff willing to challenge Judge Mack,” said Sam Grover, staff attorney for the Freedom From Religion Foundation, in a phone interview with The Daily Signal.

There was never an intent to offend anyone, and whether someone participated in the courtroom prayer would have no affect on the ruling, Mack said.

“I would never use the bench as a pulpit,” he said. “Both the U.S. Supreme Court and the Texas Supreme Court open with prayers.”

The Texas attorney general’s opinion marks a decisive victory for Mack, after getting a mixed victory before the Texas State Commission on Judicial Conduct, based on the Freedom From Religion Foundation complaint from 2014. The judicial commission dismissed the complaint, but “strongly cautioned” against the chaplain program and prayer.

But the commission ruling that offered neither discipline nor a mandate to stop, led Mack and First Liberty Institute, a religious freedom advocacy group that represents the judge, to seek more clarity. In February, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick asked Paxton to issue a clarifying opinion on the constitutionality of the case.

“The attorney general’s opinion is clear and sound constitutionally,” Mack said. “It emboldens believers of any faith to stand up for the First Amendment because it’s the First Amendment for a reason. The tyranny of political correctness is causing people to step away from their values. They should stand up and be counted.”

The attorney general opinion offers a clear victory, said Kelly Shackelford, president of First Liberty Institute.

“This is a total victory for Judge Mack and for the citizens of Texas,” Shackelford said in a statement. “If the Supreme Courts of the United States and Texas can open with prayer, clearly, the law allows for Judge Mack’s court to open with an invocation by a volunteer chaplain. We are grateful Attorney General Paxton has brought clarity to this important issue, reaffirming the constitutionality of prayer in the public arena.”

However, Grover of the Freedom From Religion Foundation contends that Paxton did not address the group’s main points from a letter sent in April.

“None of the points we raised were addressed. The opinion barely scratches the surface,” Grover said. “This far exceeds the ceremonial acknowledgment of a deity to open of the the Supreme Court or the Texas Supreme Court.”

Grover said merely allowing multiple faiths to participate in the chaplain program doesn’t mean it’s not exclusionary to nonbelievers.

“It makes the violation less severe, but a prayer in any setting, any prayer of any religion leaves out a large segment of nonreligious people,” Grover said.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


21 August, 2016

Multicultural driver in Britain

Footage has been released that shows the terrifying moment a driver, who was banned for killing a friend, lead police on a high-speed chase through a city’s suburbs.

Zahoor Hussain, 29, from Almondsbury, Bristol, was jailed for 32 months and stripped of his licence in 2012 after a horror smash which killed 17-year-old friend Zoe Smith.

Police spotted him behind the wheel of a Mercedes last month and Hussain led them on a six-mile pursuit, reaching 80mph through 20mph zones.

Bristol Crown Court heard it was only through luck that no-one was killed or seriously injured in the 15-minute chase through the busy streets of Bristol.

Dashcam footage from one of the police cars shows Hussain swerving and hurtling past other vehicles at breakneck speed.

At one point he goes through a no entry sign and speeds the wrong way down a residential road.

He also shoots across junctions and careers around sharp corners in an attempt to evade cops before crashing into a bus and van.

Two officers leapt from their cars and dragged him out as smoke poured from the engine of the Mercedes C430.

Hussain admitted dangerous driving, failing to stop for police and driving while disqualified and without insurance.

He was jailed for 18 months at Bristol Crown Court on Tuesday following the incident on the evening of July 22.

Recorder Andrew Maitland heard it was Hussain’s fifth conviction for driving while disqualified since 2004. He told him: 'You have displayed you are a menace to the public when you are behind the steering wheel. 'Anybody who has watched how you drove would be aghast. 'It is a miracle that, on the way, other persons nor vehicles were damaged.  'It was inevitable there would be a crash at the end, given the manner of your appalling dangerous driving.'

Hussain was disqualified from driving for four years and nine months and told to pass an extended driving test. He was told to pay a £140 victim surcharge.

Hussain was jailed for causing the death of his friend, Miss Smith, when he crashed his father’s Mini Cooper while speeding at 50mph in a 20mph zone in September 2010.  Her family branded the sentence 'a joke'.


A veiled truth revealed about America

A cautious Boston view of Trump

FIFTEEN YEARS ago, my son, David — adopted from South Korea — got off a school bus and appeared at our front door with a black eye. A bully named Scott had told him to “go back to China where you belong.” A fight ensued.

Some 20 years ago, at a college reunion, a classmate, later to be honored as alumni of the year, sat at a bar and told a joke about blacks. The rest of us abandoned him mid-sentence.

Fifty years ago, one high school classmate labeled me a “kike.” Another called me “Shylock.”

And in town, a barber — the barber — refused to give a black classmate a haircut.

None of this can be blamed on Donald Trump.

Donald Trump didn’t bring bigotry to America. It has always been there. He has merely brought it into the light. We may have disdain for him because of his words and his positions, but we cannot hold him responsible for the sentiments held by millions of Americans who feel disenfranchised and threatened by profound demographic shifts in American society. Trump is just another in a long line of American demagogues — figures like Father Charles Coughlin, Joe McCarthy, and George Wallace.

His adherents are not all poor, uneducated white
men, as we so desperately want to believe. They cannot be so easily dismissed as “losers,” a breed apart from
the rest of us. Some wear pinstripes. Some work in banks. Some teach in universities. Many are faithful churchgoers. They are our neighbors. Many are decent people in other ways.

It is a fool’s errand to rant against them, or to pretend that we are shocked and surprised that such a figure as Trump could command the loyalties of so many. Of course he can. Men such as Trump always could. The real question is whether we pretend that he is an anomaly, someone that we should merely wait out, or whether we see him as an opportunity to confront all those American demons whose existence we largely deny, choosing instead to celebrate our mythical exceptionalism.

Trump boasts that he is the Master of the Deal. Actually, he is the court jester — clownish, foppish, pathetically delusional. But he is right about one thing. We must deal with him, not simply content ourselves with his defeat. He should be seen as the catalyst for a long-overdue public debate about who we are as a nation, what our identity is to be, and what it is we value about our culture and society. We must move beyond easy platitudes and kumbayas, recognize the legitimacy of others’ discomfort, and not be so fast to brand them racists and bigots. We must hope for more than a racial armistice or a tolerance of differences.

Here, political correctness has done us no service. Suppression of speech and the policing of expression can only drive the offenders underground in the short term. Over time, it makes them more brazen, energized by denial, coercion, and resentment. The true liberal — the likes of John Stuart Mill and Bertrand Russell — understood that robust and unfettered speech was the ultimate change agent, that to overcome societal resistance and apprehension we must confront them, openly, unabashedly, and without constraints. At its truest, democracy is a contact sport.

And for that, we may, in hindsight, owe Donald Trump a debt of gratitude. He has taken a wrecking ball to political correctness, to the facade of a post-racial society, to the complacency of so many. And he has inadvertently opened the door for a more open and honest discussion of pluralism in America.


Dangerous to criticize feminism

Feminism is taking the shape of a new religion

Tory MP Philip Davies is being threatened with suspension from his own party. No, he didn’t fake his expenses or get caught in flagrante, wearing nothing but a replica Chelsea top. All Davies did was criticise feminism.

Davies chose to vent his anti-feminist spleen at a meeting organised by Justice for Men and Boys, a typically sad group of men’s rights activists. ‘In this day and age’, Davies said, ‘the feminist zealots really do want women to have their cake and eat it. They fight for their version of equality on all the things that suit women – but are very quick to point out that women need special protections and treatment on other things.’ This prompted a deluge of annoyed tweets from feminists featuring cake-eating selfies. But others were not satisfied with just giving Davies a dressing down on social media – they decided Davies should lose his job.

An open letter from Angela Rayner, the shadow secretary of state for education, denounced Davies and called on new prime minister Theresa May to suspend his party membership, pending an investigation into his comments. Rayner warned: ‘There is no place for these views in modern Britain.’

Many have praised Rayner for calling out Davies’ putative sexism, most notably Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Tweeting his support for Rayner’s call for a party suspension, Corbyn said Davies’ comments ‘show utter contempt for women’.

Yet is Davies really deserving of this scorn? For a start, as most women will no doubt be aware, men’s rights activists meetings are pretty lame affairs. The comments made at such gatherings are scarcely interesting enough to be considered threatening. But Rayner seems to think differently. ‘[Davies] endorses and legitimises the inflammatory and toxic rhetoric of groups who are misogynistic to their core’, she writes. Davies’ speech, she is saying, actually poses a threat to women’s safety and wellbeing.

This isn’t the first time criticism of feminism has been treated like a criminal offence. For example, an EU statute ‘for the promotion of tolerance’ lists ‘anti-feminism’ as a viewpoint that ought to be eliminated. In a wonderful display of Orwellian doublespeak, the statute claims to ‘promote tolerance within society’ by ‘condemn[ing] all manifestations of intolerance based on bias, bigotry and prejudice’. In other words, we must promote tolerance by not tolerating intolerance. And we must tolerate feminism, not as a political ideology, but as a protected human right, as a personal belief.

Feminism has become untouchable. Criticise feminism on the internet and you’re branded a troll; speak out against the latest feminist campaign and you’re labelled a misogynist; disagree with the idea that we live in a rape culture and you’re called a rape apologist. The treatment of feminism’s critics as heretics, to be sacked, silenced and excluded until they repent, shows how contemporary feminism is taking the shape of a new religion. We are treating feminism as if it is infallible.

This is a big problem, not only because so much of contemporary feminism deserves criticism, but also because it threatens freedom of speech. The freedom to criticise all ideas and scrutinise all beliefs in the public realm ought to be the foundation of any civilised, democratic society. No political ideology should be elevated above public discussion and debate, and presented as sacrosanct.

Philip Davies should not be suspended. And Kevin Roberts, the Saatchi and Saatchi boss who said that there was no gender inequality in the workplace, shouldn’t have been effectively sacked. But, more importantly, no woman should accept the idea that we should censor in the name of protecting women. From the most abhorrent women-hating rants to the mildest of criticisms, there should be nothing that we cannot say about feminism.

The funny thing about Davies’ outburst is that he has a point. Not about feminists plotting to thwart sad men’s rights activists, but about contemporary feminism being contradictory. Feminists do fight for their version of equality in certain areas, but they are also quick to point out that women need special protections and treatment in other areas. This does women no favours. Fighting for women’s equality by arguing for special treatment because we’re vulnerable puts us in a position of weakness. By censoring debate about feminism, we paint women as too vulnerable to handle criticism.

All free-thinking women must stand up for freedom of speech. We must defend the right of men who rant about misandry and other mad theories to say their piece, not because we agree, but because to censor speech is to admit that we are not able to win the argument. The danger to freedom doesn’t lie in isolated gatherings of small-minded men; rather, it lies in the paternalism of those who think we need to protect women by censoring opinion.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


19 August, 2016

Why women are the worst misogynists: My high-flying mum who never helped me was a classic example, says VIVIENNE PARRY

I agree with the observations below.  In my experience it takes a woman to tear another woman to shreds verbally.  I remember once being appalled at an article about Margaret Thatcher.  It started with her shoes, ended with her hair and criticized everything in between.  I remarked what a savage article it was to my then wife. "Probably written by another woman", she commented.  It was.

Back in the late Sixties and early Seventies my mother was a very successful businesswoman. She took over my grandfather's ailing TV retail firm and built it up so well she won a Businesswoman of the Year award.

So, you might imagine, in an era when feminism was all the rage, when sisters were apparently helping each other, that my mother would be all too keen to help other women succeed - as she had.

Ha! Hardly. My mother would rather have walked on hot coals than mentored another woman - even me, her daughter.

When I became the first person in my immediate family to go to university, far from encouraging me to break any glass ceiling, she was faintly appalled.

'Whatever for?' was her initial reaction. After all, I had been sent to a school that trained its 'gals' to be the wives of diplomats and doctors. Mother didn't expect me to go off and study zoology, never mind specialise in immunology and genetics.

So horrified was she at my subsequent success that even when I became a presenter on BBC science programme Tomorrow's World in 1994 she never once complimented me on it.

So why was my mother so against helping anyone of her own gender climb to the same heights as she did? Why was she so loath to laud female achievement - even when the female forging ahead was her own daughter?

The answer's rather simple: I fear my mother was a misogynist.

It may seem like a contradiction in terms - isn't misogyny, or the hatred of women, expressed only by men? Not so. As I, and many of you know, women can be more misogynistic than men.

Perhaps my mother - and I'm trying to be kind here - just wanted me to avoid the difficult life of a female pioneer. But in truth, I think she was one of those women who believed the most awful thing another woman could do was 'get above herself'.

Women should know their place - at home, with her husband and children. But obviously she herself was somehow excused those duties.

Worryingly, I believe that things have become even worse than in my mother's day, when women hating other women was restricted to muttering behind the lace curtains or the squashing of ambition in uppity daughters. Modern-day misogyny is far more violent and hateful - and it's women who are the worst offenders.

For example, why do you think there are still so few women in high-ranking positions in top companies? Because the ladder of progress is all too often kicked from under us by other women who are keen to preserve their positions, rather than letting a rival female in.

The only time I have been fired was by a woman, on a matter of principle (mine not hers). She was that most heinous of women bosses - the sort who act like a sweet ten-year-old in the presence of male bosses, but behave like a tyrant with male underlings and, when faced with women, turn into a psychotic she-devil.

This particular boss had clawed her way up to be the lone woman on the board. And believe me, that was the way she intended it to stay. She wanted to be the sole female in the room, the only recipient of the men's attention.

Wrong as her behaviour was, I can sort of understand the logic behind it. When there are so few women at higher levels, many of them think they must behave like a tigress, using every weapon at their disposal to protect their position against other 'sisters'.

'Leaning in', as Facebook boss Sheryl Sandberg exhorted women to do, clearly hasn't taken off yet.  Indeed, rather than behaving like women should - encouraging, nurturing, promoting other females - many display the cut-throat characteristics for which men are so often attacked.

In this, as in so many things, my mother was ahead of the curve. When the daughter of a friend asked her for advice on how to succeed as a businesswoman, the reply was brisk and unhelpful: 'Learn how to drink a man under the table'.  In other words, be more manly than the men. And she could indeed outdrink any man.

It is true that women misogynists have been seen throughout history. Queen Victoria famously denied equal voting rights saying: 'Let women be what God intended, a helpmeet for men but with totally different duties and vocations'. It's not clear how she thought being Queen Empress fitted into this world view.

And the Suffragettes did not get much support from women. Admittedly, many were turned off by their acts of militancy, such as smashing windows and setting fires. But even the less vociferous supporters of suffragism - the type who held peaceful 300,000-strong rallies - were viewed with suspicion by women in the general population.

It must have grated that the very people they were trying to liberate castigated the Suffragettes as bitter spinsters, sneering at them for being 'unnatural'.  Sound familiar? This is just the kind of abuse thrown at women today, by other women.

Much of this female-on-female misogyny now occurs online, which is, in some ways, merely a technological manifestation of an ancient phenomenon.

And the more attractive the woman, the more indirect aggression she draws from her female peers. No doubt it dates from the days when we had to attract a man to the door of our cave.

It's typically directed at good-looking women as they are seen as a threat, which is possibly why classical scholar, the wonderful Professor Mary Beard - a woman beautiful with wisdom not Botox - attracted more male than female online trolls.

When I was a Tomorrow's World regular, men were invariably complimentary about my appearance. It was women who made the comments, including my favourite: 'You're so much more attractive off screen.' A masterclass in a passive-aggressive misogynistic barb, if there ever was one.

My mother, of course, found fault with every dress I wore onscreen: 'Did it have to be green? You looked like a leek' - although her insults did at least reveal that she'd been secretly watching.

Naturally, the more a woman thinks she'll get away with making misogynistic remarks, the more she'll do it. And so the internet is perfect, the female poison-pen writer's dream medium.  There's no comeback, no direct confrontation, often near-total anonymity, as well as maximum devastating impact.

Professor Tracy Vaillancourt of McMaster University in Canada is well known for her work in the area of indirect aggression. She carried out fascinating research where conversations were recorded between pairs of women who had been shown photos of the same woman dressed in different clothing.

The female in the photo, when dressed plainly, was seen as a potential friend. But the more provocative her outfit, the greater the bitchiness she attracted.

But what's worrying is that today's misogyny by women goes further than mere bitchiness.  Take the insults hurled at Leslie Jones, the black star of the female-led Ghostbusters movie remake. Much was vilely racist, but there were many horrible things said about her appearance - shockingly, much of it from women.

Indeed, women comprise a truly disturbing percentage of all misogynistic tweets, according to think tank Demos. Their research earlier this year revealed that half of all tweets using the words 'slut' and 'whore' came from female users, with some 20 per cent of these using the words in a highly aggressive or threatening way.

Remember the case of Caroline Criado-Perez, who campaigned to get an image of novelist Jane Austen on British banknotes?  When she succeeded, she didn't get acclaim. She received 50 death or rape threats an hour for days from internet trolls. And you'd think all those must have been men, but many, including the most extreme, were women.

There are shining examples of women who don't succumb to misogyny, though.

Take Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies. Appalled at the lack of senior female medical researchers, she successfully took on the entire male medical establishment and told them none could apply for any of the £1billion research funds she controlled as head of the National Institute for Health Research, unless they signed up to a scheme to improving female representation in academia.

But actions like these are few and far between, and it's hard not to conclude that the sisterhood doesn't exist - or at least, only functions when women aren't in competition with each other, whether for promotions, partners or compliments.

Because, as any one who has been on the receiving end of a misogynistic remark could tell you, the sharp tongue of a woman always cuts so much deeper than that of a man.


Some feminist racism

The writer below seems oblivious that she is engaging in racial stereotyping.  "White" is a racial term.  But feminist racism is OK, I guess. 

It began with a daily prayer: "God, give me the confidence of a mediocre white dude".

When writer Sarah Hagi tweeted this as an antidote to impostor syndrome, women nodded in recognition and snapped up t-shirts, bags and mugs the words were quickly printed on.

And it wasn't just for laughs; it's a genuinely motivating thought for women who regularly criticise themselves for not being better, or not being perfect.

A friend of mine called me from New York recently, for example, and said she was worried about re-entering the work force after having children and doing TV appearances again, about losing her confidence and making mistakes.

She has a PhD from Oxford, and a professorship at an American university. All I had to do was remind her of how happily her male peers accept invitations to speak everywhere, anywhere, to speak on anything at any time — and when I started mentioning some by name, I could almost hear her spine stiffen.

When I told her to carry herself with the confidence of a mediocre white man, she laughed — and has reminded me of it often since.

I have had this conversation with female friends many times, and sometimes with myself. Self-doubt is a potent force in the female brain, like a rent-protected occupant that won't leave even as we grow older, even as we pile up achievements alongside.


The problem with Black Lives Matter

Radicals once challenged racial thinking — now they embrace it

White self-loathing and black self-pity: these seem to be the only two options in radical politics these days. On one side stand white liberals, white radical students, white writers, beating themselves up over their skin colour and the ‘privilege’ it apparently grants them. ‘Our whiteness is… the colour of shame’, as the playwright Eve Ensler says. And on the other side stand black activists, black Oxford students, black writers, presenting themselves as the damaged goods of history, beat up by past events, traumatised by white privilege, and in urgent need of recognition of their pain. What both sides share in common is a depressing, fatalistic attachment to racial thinking, to the racial imagination, and a commitment to the therapeutic project of expelling inner demons (whites) or demanding validation of one’s suffering (blacks). Radicals once rejected the category of race; now they embrace it, and expand it.

The new racialism, this danse macabre between white self-loathing and black self-pity, is best embodied in Black Lives Matter. Starting life in the US as a protest movement against police shootings of black citizens, BLM has now come to Britain, where its backward views have become clearer. It announced its arrival by blocking the motorway to Heathrow. It is not remotely a grassroots campaign — its protests attract tiny numbers of people — but rather is an offshoot of the middle-class politics of the Safe Space and offence-taking that has taken hold on campuses in recent years. Its key UK spokespeople are a postgraduate geography student and a ‘black, British, queer, non-binary Muslim’ who goes by the pronoun ‘they’. These people are about as representative of the black British experience as Princess Anne is of the white British experience. Their claim to speak on behalf of all British black people by virtue of the fact that they have the same colour skin speaks volumes about the innate racialism of the politics of identity and its active suppression of difficult, divisive questions of class and experience.

The most notable thing about BLM, especially in its UK form, is how it detracts from the radical anti-racist politics of old in two profound ways: first, through promoting a view of black people as vulnerable and requiring, in essence, social therapy; and secondly, by creating, and even celebrating, racial division rather than seeking to overcome it. BLM UK, taking its cue from the raised-hands politics of victimhood pursued by BLM US, exaggerates the plight of blacks in Britain. It describes their lives as being in ‘crisis’, which the average black person is unlikely to recognise. And it promotes itself as a kind of therapeutic balm to the black masses’ alleged mental turmoil. ‘A lot of people have lost their voice, they feel powerless’, said one of BLM UK’s founders. ‘We want to give them their voice back.’ Another founder says BLM showed him ‘that my life mattered’. Where earlier anti-racist movements emphasised the capacity of black people — to run their own lives, to do politics, to live as autonomously as whites — middle-class BLM leaders talk up their powerlessness, their feeling of vulnerability, and their psychological need for a movement that can speak for them and prove to them that they’re valuable. This is therapy, not politics; and it’s highly elitist.

And where earlier radicals sought to overcome the ideology of race, BLM and its supporters — including its white supporters — wallow in racial thinking. BLM views everything through a racialised prism and openly encourages people to stay within their racial categories. BLM UK says it welcomes ‘white allies’ but warns them to ‘acknowledge your privilege’. ‘Don’t dilute’, it says. In the US, BLM has segregated some of its marches, making white people march in the background and forbidding them from speaking to the media. And at some press conferences it has segregated black and white journalists. As one report says, BLM has taken to ‘splitting up white and black members of the press’, and giving priority to black reporters. A whole new lexicography has been developed to promote this supposedly radical new segregation. ‘Check your privilege’, ‘Stay in your lane’, ‘Don’t “whitesplain” racism to me’: these are the fashionable terms of the politics of identity, which essentially say that solidarity across races is impossible because whites haven’t experienced what blacks have.

Far from challenging racial thinking, BLM UK demands we approach the world with a highly racialised mindset, that we think of people as black or white and engage with them accordingly. It explicitly eschews Martin Luther King’s dream of people being judged by their character rather than their colour because, as one of its public supporters has written previously, blacks and whites come at the world from ‘completely different planes’, meaning there is a ‘gulf of emotional disconnect’. Of course, BLM did not create this new racialism, this ‘stay in your lane’ radical politics that says we can never really understand, far less fight alongside, people of different colours. Rather, it merely embodies the now mainstream and destructive politics of identity, which has so thoroughly elevated group loyalty over universalism, and narrow individual experience over the humanist ideal of working out what we share in common and how we might achieve it, that it has made solidarity all but impossible. BLM presents itself as an edgy, independent movement, but in truth it is best understood as the militant wing of the elitist politics of identity now promoted everywhere from the academy to the political realm.

But it would be wrong to see BLM as the latest manifestation of the post-King black nationalism of groups like the Black Panthers. This has been the response of many on the right to the BLM phenomenon: to brand them ‘black supremacists’ and talk about them as a dangerous new Panther phenomenon. But those old black nationalists emphasised the power of blacks, as symbolised by their desire for guns, whereas BLM emphasises their existential vulnerability, as symbolised in their raised-hand gesture and their slogan ‘Don’t shoot’. Where black nationalists rejected white society, largely out of frustration at the failure of civil-rights legislation to improve ordinary black people’s lives, BLM is strangely reliant on white society, particularly on the white cultural elite: it needs this constituency’s white self-loathing to validate its claims that blacks are damaged by white privilege, white history and by what one BLM UK supporter calls a ‘politics of race that operates on its inherent invisibility’. Where black nationalists demanded respect for their rights, BLM calls for official recognition of their pain, making them ironically beholden to mainstream (white) society and its therapeutic machinery.

The return of the racial imagination ultimately speaks to the withering of the radical social imagination. As radicals, leftists and liberals have turned away from the politics of real, meaningful social change in favour of the politics of identity, in favour of managing society and its inhabitants rather than transforming society, so group thinking has returned and divisions have intensified. We are no longer individuals with common interests we might fight for together; rather, we’re unbridgeable racial creatures who must always acknowledge the ‘gulfs’ that divide us. If we’re black we must agree that we’ve been damaged by history, and if we’re white we must always check our privilege — that is, self-flagellate for the crimes of history. The rise of BLM really speaks to how the politics of identity violently forces us all back into the racial boxes that men and women struggled so hard to escape; how it has replaced the old racist idea that biology determines our fate with the new, nasty idea that it is history that shapes our characters and outlooks. The old racists made mankind prisoners of biology; the new racialists make us slaves to history.

Worse, this new politics rehabilitates paternalistic views of black people. Just look at how many white thinkers and writers self-consciously refuse to criticise or even question BLM, because this would apparently be ‘whitesplaining’. They think they’re being progressive, but really they’re infantilising black activists by refusing to subject their ideas and behaviour to the critical scrutiny that white radicals could expect.


Three Blacks Who Murdered White woman Because "they hated white people" sentenced

Remember Melinda McCormick, the white citizen of Pensacola who was brutally murdered by three blacks in 2013 because they "hate white people?"  Of course you don't.  But we do.

Despite the fact McCormick was targeted by the three blacks for death because those comprising the latter hate the former (for her membership in the white race), no hate crime charges were pursued.

Worse, the defense tried to claim one of the participants in the anti-white murder of McCormick by three blacks had an IQ in the 50s, meaning she wasn't fit for trial (it's been noted a Border collie, the smartest dog breed, has an IQ of 49)

A woman who pleaded no contest to participating in the fatal beating and burning of a West Pensacola woman was sentenced to 30 years in state prison Friday.

In March 2013, Kiesha Pugh and two accomplices entered the Mobile Highway apartment of 33-year-old Melinda McCormick, beat her with blunt instruments, stole some of her belongings, and set McCormick's apartment on fire.

Pugh pleaded to charges of second-degree murder and arson and was sentenced by Circuit Judge Thomas Dannheisser. One of Pugh's co-defendants, Anthony Pressley, pleaded no contest to murder and was sentenced to 60 years in prison. A jury convicted the third co-defendant, Gregory Williams, of murder and arson, and he was sentenced to life in prison.

All three defendants possess some degree of mental disability, and mental health professionals worked with the trio to make them competent for court. At Pugh's sentencing Friday, her attorney asked that she receive a lessened sentence because Pugh's IQ is in the mid-to-low 50s and a physician said she did not possess the "critical thinking" abilities of a typical adult.

The doctor testified that Pugh's academic level was that of a second grader and that she had the emotional and social maturity of a 10- or 11-year-old child. "She is someone who is easily led and she doesn't consider all possible outcomes," Pugh's attorney Richard Currey told the judge. "She's extremely vulnerable to peer pressure and unable to problem solve her way out of situations."

Pressley, Williams and Pugh reportedly hatched the plan to rob and kill McCormick and went to her home and attacked her with a hammer, pipe and crowbar. Pugh, Pressley's then girlfriend, claimed she participated in the murder because she was scared to refuse.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


18 August, 2016

Scapegoating Police in a Battle Between Good and Evil

Department of Justice has released a scathing report accusing the Baltimore Police Department of racial profiling, unconstitutional searches and arrests and excessive use of force against black residents.

The DOJ monitored the department’s policing methods for more than a year after the 2015 death of Freddie Gray. Four officers were acquitted of charges connected to Gray’s death before discredited Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby dropped charges against the remaining two officers involved.

Baltimore and the DOJ have agreed to negotiate a court-enforceable consent decree that will prescribe steps for “reform.” In other words, Attorney General Loretta Lynch will dictate how they police and whom they hire. This is all about federal control and the redistribution of power and wealth. Since the feds started interfering, police are less proactive, and Baltimore’s murder rate has soared to the highest level in decades with 344 murders in 2015! Now, things will get worse.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake – who last year sought to give rioters “space to destroy” – praised the DOJ report. She says it creates a “crucial foundation” for allowing the city to change the police department.

Rawlings-Blake and federal officials are scapegoating police officers for the despair and violence that their failed liberal policies helped create. The DOJ report is rubbish, and it will exacerbate the anger that blacks harbor toward police and whites. Police are not the problem; they’re part of the solution.

Even Martin O’Malley, the former Democrat mayor of Baltimore and former governor of Maryland, was critical of the Justice Department’s report.

As reported by Powerline Blog: As mayor of Baltimore (from late 1999 until early 2007), he [O’Malley] implemented the “zero tolerance” policing that the Justice Department deplores. He did so in response to a major crime wave, which his policies helped reverse.

O’Malley is unapologetic about cracking down on criminals, and defended his record against the DOJ’s report:

“Make no mistake about it – enforcement levels rose when we started closing down the open-air drug markets that had been plaguing our poorest neighborhoods for years. But after peaking in 2003, arrest levels declined as violent crime was driven down.”
Writer and former Baltimore Police Officer Jay Stalien, a black man and father, whose blog is called “Perception from the road less traveled: Through truth, we will unify” was on my show recently and he called the DOJ’s report “ridiculous!”

The DOJ report mentioned that police abuse and profiling was especially bad in the Western District of Baltimore. As reported by the Washington Post:

“[I]n the approximately five and a half years of data we examined, BPD recorded nearly 55,000 pedestrian stops in its smallest police district – the Western District, with a population of a little more than 37,000 people that is 97 percent African American – while making only 21,000 stops in the predominantly white Northern District, with a population of approximately 91,000.”

Based on Stalien’s experience as a Baltimore police officer, the Western District is a crime-ridden, drug-infested part of town. The DOJ report mentions a person being stopped 30 times over a period of a few years, but it doesn’t state what the person was doing or that the section is known as a major hub for drug activity.

The DOJ report also references the Freddie Gray case, but it fails to state that Gray was a known drug dealer.

Baltimore police are not targeting black people just because of their race, but years of misinformation by liberal politicians and community “leaders” have created deep-rooted hatred of police in the black community.

For Stalien and the Baltimore police officers he worked with, being a cop is deeper than just getting a paycheck. He said, “We felt an obligation to go out and to serve and protect the public.”

As for Black Lives Matter and the “leaders” who support it, Stalien is very critical of the rhetoric and false allegations made by these people.

He also said that many black residents in Baltimore view black officers as “Uncle Toms” and traitors, but he believes the public would have greater understanding for what police do if they knew how much intense training they receive concerning when to use deadly force.

When I asked whether he fears for his life, Stalien said, “yes.”

“Between 2011 and 2016, after Black Lives Matter got involved in high-profile police shootings, the respect for law enforcement disappeared. … A black Baton Rouge officer was gunned down, and his life doesn’t matter to Black Lives Matter. We’re much more scared than we were prior to these shootings. It’s had a bad effect on law enforcement. We don’t want to put ourselves in certain situations, or can’t be as pro-active, because at the end of the day, we all want to go home.”

Obama’s Justice Department can’t be trusted. Police officers like Jay Stalien are not our enemy: They’re members of our family, our neighbors and fellow Americans. They’re also our last line of defense between anarchy and a civil society.

This battle is not about blacks versus police; it’s about good versus evil. It’s a fight we must win.


Donald Trump rally in Wisconsin finds support for police

West Bend, Wisconsin: Sixty kilometres north of the unrest in Milwaukee, residents here in West Bend welcomed Donald Trump's visit to the area and his unwavering support of police officers who are once again facing scrutiny for the fatal shooting of a black man.

While Milwaukee grapples with the violence that erupted in the wake of a police shooting on Saturday, most people interviewed in this Republican stronghold said they were far more concerned that the police were being unfairly criticised as racial tension grips the city.

And they said that Trump's rally offered a chance to show support for a law-and-order presidency - and for officers who they feel have been unfairly maligned after the police fatally shot a black man who officials say had a gun.

Trump made good on the offer in his speech, accusing Hillary Clinton of pushing an anti-police "narrative" and saying that violent demonstrations are most harmful to the people in the communities themselves.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in West Bend, Wisconsin.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in West Bend, Wisconsin. Photo: AP
"She is against the police, believe me," Trump said of Clinton, adding that "the problem is not that there are too many police, the problem is that there are not enough police."

"Law and order must be restored," Trump said.

The people of this suburb seemed receptive. "I don't think it is a problem - the whole 'Black Lives Matter' - that only black people are getting killed. That's just not the case," said Lori Griggs, 44, who lives near West Bend. "We should be supporting our police officers. I think that it has blown up every time that, you know, a black individual is killed. It's blown up in the news. But you don't hear about the whites that have been killed."

Trump visited Milwaukee before his rally here but did not hold any public events in the city, choosing instead to meet privately with Milwaukee police officers and attend fundraisers.

Others believe that Trump, who during his campaign has not held any events aimed at black voters in their communities, is purposely choosing to avoid the people of Milwaukee, a city of nearly 600,000 where some 40 per cent of residents are African-American, according to the 2010 census. In contrast, 95 per cent of the people of West Bend are white, and only 1 per cent are black.

In Milwaukee, residents are naturally more sceptical of Trump's visit to the swing state and his focus on the suburbs.

"Donald Trump is running a campaign where he is seeking to be the voice of angry white folks," said Walter Bond, a local activist in Milwaukee and chief of staff for Teach For America Milwaukee. "So Donald Trump is here to sort of speak to those folks."

Faithe Colas, 55, who lives in Sherman Park, the mostly African-American neighborhood in Milwaukee where the unrest exploded, said that in holding his rally in West Bend, Trump was courting a community by which he will be warmly received.

"I don't think Milwaukee is the kind of city that would embrace a visit from Trump at the moment," she said. "Definitely, as a resident of Sherman Park, I wouldn't appreciate the added stressor it could be on our community. I think resolving what's happening in Sherman Park is more important than the presidential election at the moment."

Jim D'Angelo, a 52-year-old Republican who lives in West Bend and works in sales, said he planned to vote for Trump and believed the candidate had been mischaracterised as a racist and a misogynist by his opponents. D'Angelo lived in Milwaukee for five years as a college student and also worked as an engineer in Ferguson, Missouri, where unrest over another police killing also set off widespread violence.

"There's no racial motivation to what he is doing here," D'Angelo said. "He's coming to Washington County, which is a Republican stronghold. Republicans win this county all the time. So he's coming to beef up his base."

He added that the shooting in Milwaukee, as described by the police, seemed justified and that blacks are not the only people who face discrimination.

"I'm sure there has been some unfair treatment of African-Americans but I'm sure there has been unfair treatment of Asians and for that matter Caucasians too, so it happens every day," he said.


When Catholic Democrats betray their own church

There is a conundrum with being a Catholic Democrat candidate for office. Beyond the teachings of such a Democrat’s own church, a significant portion of the electorate — perhaps the “silent majority” — has what could be described as traditional views on social issues such as abortion or same-sex “marriage.” But the loudest part of their constituency, and the ones who most willingly offer up the manna of campaign donations, would prefer that America become the land of the free to marry whomever you wish and do as you will with that baby up until the moment of birth. The anti-Catholic position, if you will.

Leftists love the economic justice rhetoric often uttered by Pope Francis, such as decrying “income inequality” or capitalism. But they cringe when the pope speaks in a manner more reflective of traditional Christian dialogue on issues such as abortion, marriage or his latest remarks on gender.

In a closed-door meeting last week with Polish church leaders, Pope Francis noted, “In Europe, America, Latin America, Africa, and in some countries of Asia, there are genuine forms of ideological colonization taking place. And one of these — I will call it clearly by its name — is [the ideology of] ‘gender.’ Today children — children! — are taught in school that everyone can choose his or her sex. Why are they teaching this? Because the books are provided by the persons and institutions that give you money. These forms of ideological colonization are also supported by influential countries. And this is terrible!”

It was “terrible” enough that the pope went further: “God created man and woman; God created the world in a certain way … and we are doing the exact opposite. God gave us things in a ‘raw’ state, so that we could shape a culture; and then with this culture, we are shaping things that bring us back to the ‘raw’ state!”

To those for whom sin has no meaning, the concept of societal guardrails is a non-starter. Naturally, leadership in the “LGBT community” was also quick to criticize the pope’s remarks.

Because of these strongly held beliefs within the Church, as expressed by its leadership (and, by the way, the Bible), Democrats who try to corner the Catholic vote (or are Catholic themselves) tie themselves into knots on social issues. Space won’t permit a list of all the Catholic Democrats who violate their church’s teaching for political gain, so we’ll focus on two prominent ones.

Joe Biden, who is Catholic, forced his boss’s hand in 2012 by announcing his support for same-sex marriage. With his VP greasing the skids, Barack Obama soon “evolved” into his current endorsement of the practice. But in Obama’s first election in 2008, he said marriage was between a man and a woman. Just this past Monday, Biden did even more for the same-sex marriage cause as the officiant of a same-sex ceremony between two male White House staffers.

Biden’s religion makes him stray from the straight and narrow on other social issues as well. In an interview with a Jesuit publication last year, he said, “I’m prepared to accept that at the moment of conception there’s human life and being, but I’m not prepared to say that to other God-fearing and non-God-fearing people that have a different view.”

“Abortion is always wrong,” Biden continued. But not only did Biden admit he doesn’t always try to live up to his faith, he again professed that he shouldn’t impose his beliefs on others. Yet he was willing to mock a sacred ceremony in the name of “equality,” and his Party wants taxpayers to fund abortions whether they think they’re “always wrong” or not.

Biden’s would-be successor, Senator Tim Kaine, also has issues in reconciling his faith and his politics. A Catholic like Biden, Kaine ran for political office in Virginia as a pro-life Democrat but once he arrived on the national stage his position changed. He now says he is “comfortable” that he would support Hillary Clinton and her radical pro-abortion agenda despite his personal views. Writer Ben Johnson even noted, “Tim Kaine is essentially no different than Joe Biden: a gregarious man of faith whose public votes conflict with his professed theology.” (Worth noting as well: Kaine, too, has also “evolved” on same-sex marriage.)

Johnson warned, “Tim Kaine will be a yes-man who stands inertly by as Hillary Clinton engages in a four- (or eight-) year-long expansion of abortion never seen nor imagined in the history of the United States. As she crushes conscience, he can be counted on to stand by nodding and saluting, occasionally trotted out in front of Catholic groups to assure them that, really, this is what Pope Francis would want.”

But we have an idea of what Pope Francis would want, and we believe that gender disorientation pathology and abortion on demand aren’t among those items; on the other hand, a more Godly society would be high on his list. That part, however, is truly up to each of us.


Australia: PM must reform hate-speech law now, as free speech is no ‘gimme’

In March, the Attorney-General said there were more important issues on the agenda than reforming free speech laws.

Last week George Brandis again ruled out removing “insult” and “offend” from section 18c of the Racial Discrimination Act.

A focused government can fix both the budget and free speech. With the Turnbull government floating around with no economic or cultural ballast, reforming section 18c might repair some of the brand damage done to the Liberal Party in the last three years. If not now, when?

Speaking in Adelaide at the annual Sir Samuel Griffith Society conference last Friday, Tony Abbott admitted he was wrong to walk away from a pre-election promise to reform section 18c which prohibits words that are “reasonably likely … to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people” because of their “race, colour or national or ethnic origin”.

Here are five reasons why Turnbull should do what Abbott refused to do as PM. First, the country is crying out for sensible cultural leadership. As Turnbull told The Bolt Report last year, it is entirely sensible to excise “offend” and “insult” from section 18c.

Second, Senator David Leyonhjelm has lodged a complaint against Fairfax journalist Mark Kenny for writing a column that likely breaches section 18c. Kenny described Leyonhjelm as an“angry white male,” a “boorish, supercilious know-it-all”. Why shouldn’t Leyonhjelm claim Kenny’s words are reasonably likely to offend? Or is the law seriously saying white people don’t have feelings?

And that raises the third reason why Turnbull should act. The Federal Circuit Court will soon decide whether a section 18c case against three young students from Queensland University of Technology will go to trial. Three years ago, a few students were evicted from an indigenous computer lab by indigenous woman Cindy Prior for not having the right skin colour. In response, one student wrote on Facebook: “Just got kicked out of unsigned indigenous computer room. QUT stopping segregation with segregation.”

Prior lodged an 18c complaint against the boys because she says her feelings were hurt. Some might find Kenny’s criticisms of Leyonhjelm far more insulting than anything a few students wrote on social media. Yet Prior claims she has been so hurt by their words, even words directed at QUT not her, that she hasn’t been able to work for three years. Leyonhjelm’s section 18c complaint is a useful stunt. But a stunt nonetheless. Prior’s case isn’t a stunt. Hence it provides an even more cogent reason for reforming 18c. Whether it goes to trial or not, everyone is a loser in this case. First and foremost, the students for posting innocuous comments. These young men simply want to study and work and forge a career without being branded bigots. They don’t want to be cultural warriors fighting to defend their right to free speech. But that’s what they have been forced to do, engaging lawyers, spending time and energy on a case that makes no sense.

The second loser is Prior. A law that encourages a person to become a hapless victim by claiming her feelings have been hurt by a few words on Facebook is a law that infantilises that person. It encourages Prior to see herself as weak and vulnerable, incapable of dealing with the most trifling of words.

And the third loser is us. Laws that infantilise Prior also infantilise us by allowing feelings to trump reason. Laws that slap a bigot label on students for a few words posted on Facebook are laws that stand ready to label any of us bigots should we deviate from the stifling orthodoxy of political correctness. Laws that stifle free speech soon strangle debate and then progress is shackled too.

The brouhaha over a cartoon in The Australian by Bill Leak provides the fourth reason why 18c must be reformed. Leak’s cartoon about family dysfunction in indigenous communities should have raised intelligent questions about family dysfunction in indigenous communities. Instead of confronting the real issue, ABC radio’s Jon Faine immediately encouraged offended people to lodge a complaint under section 18c to establish that Leak’s cartoon is prohibited by law.

Curious about Faine’s attempt to stifle free speech, I contacted the Australian Human Rights Commission that same day for comment. What did the new Human Rights Commissioner, Edward Santow, have to say about this uproar that was now raising questions about free speech?

The commission’s media adviser advised me this was a race issue and accordingly the Race Commissioner would comment. Sure enough Race Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane said that “Aboriginal Australians who have been racially offended, insulted, humiliated or intimidated … can lodge a complaint under the Racial Discrimination Act”.

With calls even from the Race Commissioner for people to complain under section 18c, I suggested to the commission’s media adviser that it was also a free speech matter. I repeated my request for a comment from the Human Rights Commissioner, who is charged with responsibility for the human right to free speech. There was only silence on that front. The Commission decided it was a race issue. End of story.

When claiming money for hurt feelings under section 18c takes precedence at the Australian Human Rights Commission over defending the human right to free speech, it’s clear our culture is being corrupted by the very institution charged with protecting human rights.

The foyer of the commission’s offices in Sydney openly exhibits that corruption. A floor-to-ceiling glass wall adjacent to where visitors sit says: “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and wellbeing of themselves and their families.”

Do I really have a human right to demand a certain standard of living from the government? Who determines what that standard of living is? Me? You? Some make-work bureaucrat at the commission trying to justify a sky-high salary? What about my responsibility to create a standard of living for myself?

Speaking at the Sydney Opera House last week, PJ O’Rourke identified the core of this rights corruption. He pointed to the trumping of gimme-rights over get-outta-here rights. Gimme-rights are when you claim you have a human right to get something — like more than $240,000 for having your feelings hurt. The get-outta-here rights mean you have a right to get government out of your life — say a student who expects to be able to freely post a few pointed comments about QUT’s boneheaded segregation without being hauled before a court. Too many politicians are also consumed with gimme-rights. Promising people things under the banner of gimme-rights rather than defending get-outta-here rights gives politicians things to do. When was the last time a politician with real power promised to get out of our lives and deliver on that front?

The new Senate offers Turnbull additional heft to defend free speech. Re-elected senators Bob Day and Leyonhjelm are on board. So are new senators Derryn Hinch, Pauline Hanson and her three One Nation senators. Maybe a decent debate can entice Nick Xenophon and his senators to defend principles rather than pursue populism. Turnbull should make the case for what he called sensible reform of section 18c, not as a sop to conservatives, but because it is the right thing to do in a Western liberal democracy committed to free speech. So let’s ask again, if not now, when?



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


17 August, 2016

Rich animal "welfare" organization is at it again! Charity handed missing cat... then puts it to sleep before the owner can collect it

When her beloved cat failed to return home as normal, Sandra Hall immediately began searching and putting up posters before contacting the RSPCA.

Just over 24 hours later she received a call to say the ginger tom, called Kitty, had been handed in to the animal charity. The 59-year-old mother-of-two breathed a sigh of relief that her pet was in safe hands.

But yesterday Mrs Hall told how Kitty was put down before she and her husband James, 66, had even been able to speak to an inspector to arrange for the cat’s collection.

‘He was the most loving and affectionate cat and was part of the family,’ she said. ‘I was absolutely distraught. They said I could have the dead body back.’

The incident is the latest in a string of similar controversies involving the ‘over-zealous’ animal welfare charity and comes only three months after its new chief executive, £150,000-a-year Jeremy Cooper, promised it would become ‘a lot less political’ on his watch.

Kitty had lived with Mrs Hall and her family in Larkfield, Kent, since they adopted him from a former neighbour nine years ago.

One Friday last month he was let out at the usual time of 7pm but failed to return. Mr and Mrs Hall looked for him without success.

The next morning, Mrs Hall put out posters and contacted the RSPCA. Then, on the Sunday, she received a call to say Kitty had been handed in to the charity.

Mrs Hall contacted the RSPCA at least eight times and was told someone would call back the next day – but nobody did. On the Tuesday, in desperation, she found Mr Cooper’s email address and contacted him.

An hour later an inspector arrived and told her Kitty had been put to sleep. The RSPCA said: ‘This cat was taken to a vet’s by a concerned member of the public, who believed it to be an unwell stray.

‘The cat was scanned for a microchip but when the registered owner was contacted they said they no longer owned the cat. The member of public then called the RSPCA. ‘We took the cat to another vet’s for treatment. The cat deteriorated and a vet decided to put it to sleep.

This is extremely unfortunate as we have now been made aware a lady has been looking after this cat for nine years but had not had the cat microchipped with her details.’

Kitty’s case is reminiscent of that of Claude the cat. He was taken from Richard and Samantha Byrnes by the RSPCA in 2013, after a neighbour raised concerns that he had a matted coat.

Claude, who was 16, was destroyed and the Byrnes, from Tring, Hertfordshire, were charged with animal cruelty offences – which were later dropped. It emerged that he hated being groomed.


Homosexuality and Discrimination: A contrary View

The following essay by Sean Gabb goes back to 2011 but has lost no relevance

On Wednesday the 13th April 2011, two men, James Bull and Jonathan Williams, kissed each other in the John Snow public house in Soho. Apparently, they were then asked to leave by a member of staff who called their act “obscene.” This alleged incident led to the usual sort of outrage. On the Friday following, several hundred homosexuals gathered in the street outside the pub to kiss each other. The pub closed early. Though its landlord has not so far made any comment to the media, the Metropolitan Police are now on the prowl, to see if he or his staff can be done under the “hate crime” laws.

When I read this story last week, I simply sniffed and moved on. Not long ago, every sentence of the newspaper report would have had people scratching their heads. But modern England is a strange place. The only oddity now is that anyone running a pub in Soho could even notice if two men were kissing, let alone think it good for business to object. I have been drawn back to the story, though, by a news release from Peter Tatchell.  Among much else, he declares that “Businesses that provide a service to the public have a duty under the law to not discriminate.” While this may be an accurate statement of the law as it stands, removing the words “under the law” makes it a plain statement of what Peter believes. He believes this, and so do many other people. Indeed, among the media and political classes in modern England, it is an almost a self-evident proposition that, if you offer goods or services for sale, you have at least a moral obligation to do business with anyone who has money to spend. Refuse to do business with someone because you dislike the group of which he is a member, and expect to be vilified, where not taken to court.

Now, if it is frequently repeated by those in authority, a proposition may cease to be disputed, or even examined. It does not become true. And this proposition is false. No one has a moral obligation to do business with those whom he dislikes. Any law that compels him to do such business is not a victory for human rights, but a violation of rights. I have much respect for Peter Tatchell. He is more excitable than most of my friends. On the other hand, he has, over the past thirty years, played an honourable and perhaps decisive role in striking down the various legal persecutions of homosexuals. He also takes a straightforward line on freedom of speech that is nowadays rare among socialists. But he is, in his view of anti-discrimination laws, both wrong and even dangerously wrong. I hope that he will regard what I have to say on this issue as entirely friendly criticism.

Personal and Economic Freedom: A False Dichotomy

I read John Stuart Mill’s essay On Liberty when I was seventeen, and was immediately smitten by it. Reading the essay marked my final transition from liberal conservative to libertarian. Even at the time, though, I found my eyes opening at this claim, in Chapter V:

…[T]rade is a social act. Whoever undertakes to sell any description of goods to the public, does what affects the interest of other persons, and of society in general; and thus his conduct, in principle, comes within the jurisdiction of society…. [T]he so-called doctrine of Free Trade… rests on grounds different from, though equally solid with, the principle of individual liberty asserted in this Essay.

Mill is wrong here. Freedom is the right to do whatever we please with our own lives and property. The right is limited only by an obligation to refrain from force or fraud in dealing with others. The introduction of money into one man’s association with another makes no difference in itself. For example, a man may want to sleep only with other men. That is his business. He may choose to hold a sex party in his house, and to invite only men. That also is his business. It is his body, to with as he pleases. It is his property, to do with as he pleases – so long, of course, as he does not, as reasonably conceived, make a nuisance of himself to his neighbours. To make a law compelling him to sleep with women as well is to make him into a slave. To make a law compelling him to admit women to his party, and men who want to sleep with women, is also to make him into a slave. He has bought or rented his house with his earnings, and telling him how to spend his earnings is as much a form of slavery as telling him what to do directly with his body. What makes the case any different if he offers himself to men as a prostitute, or charges for admission to his sex parties? Why should he be forced by an anti-discrimination law to sell his body to some woman who may desire him – or to take admission money from heterosexuals?

The right of one man to sleep with another is nothing more than an instance of the right to freedom of association. Freedom of association also includes freedom of trade. Denying any one instance of this freedom is to set a precedent for others to be denied. Regardless of payment, consenting adults should be free to associate as they please. Moreover, freedom of association necessarily involves the right not to associate. No one has a right to be included. No one has a right not to be shunned. Though they currently favour sexual and racial minorities, anti-discrimination laws in business matters are an attack on the right of these minorities to be left alone.

It may be very hurtful to see notices outside hotels that say things like “Wogs and queers not welcome.” It may be very hurtful to be told “We don’t employ your sort in this company.” But it is not our hotel, and it is not our company. We have no moral right to share in the profits of these businesses, or to cover their losses. Equally, we have no moral right to dictate how they should be run.

Of course, while it should have every right to throw demonstrative homosexuals into the street, no one is obliged to drink at the John Snow public house; and the demonstration outside a few days later was entirely legitimate. As said, it is bizarre that anyone on Soho could regard this sort of discrimination as other than catastrophic for business. It may have come already, but I do expect a grovelling apology from the owners of the public house. And it is worth noting that, while homosexuals are not as generally loved as the media would have us believe, there is very little active dislike. Even without anti-discrimination laws, I do not think modern England is a place where discrimination is welcomed.


Obama’s Sex-Driven War on Science

President Obama has sacrificed the well-being of our nation’s youth on the altar of ideology.

Barack Obama made headlines during his first months in office by loudly “reversing” several Bush administration policies. The new president announced that he would close the Guantanamo detention facility, “reset” relations with Russia, and discontinue interrogation by torture. But Gitmo remains open, relations with Russia are worse, and the Bush administration had already abandoned torture, including waterboarding, years before Obama took office.

In his Inaugural Address, President Obama declared that he would “restore science to its rightful place” when making federal government policy. Weeks later, on March 9, 2009, he reversed Bush’s restrictive rules governing embryonic stem cell research. At that time, Obama promised that his administration would henceforth rely upon “facts,” not “ideology,” whenever scientific knowledge was relevant to his government’s actions. He even issued an executive order to institutionalize the integrity of his administration’s reliance upon scientific research.

It is debatable whether President Obama has lived up to his promise to replace “ideology” with scientific “facts” in some of the domains he specifically mentioned, such as climate change and protection of endangered species. But in one of the areas he listed—children’s health—he has surely reneged on his promise. Unfortunately for America’s children, consistently promoting their genuine well-being would interfere with the president’s ideological war on traditional sexual morality.

The president’s lawyers have argued for years in courts across the country that one of the administration’s most divisive domestic proposals—the Health and Human Services contraception and abortifacient “mandate” for all females of childbearing age, including my own teenage daughter—was justified by a “compelling state interest” in meeting the unmet needs of women who lacked effective access to these services. These lawyers eventually conceded, however, that the government had conducted no empirical studies whatsoever to support their claim, and could cite no evidence for it. This startling admission, along with other evidence, amply supports the suspicion that the chief goal of the mandate was ideological and not empirical. Its purpose is to utterly normalize contraception and early abortion by insinuating it into the benefits package of all American workers, including those who work for religious employers.

For years, administration lawyers argued for “gay rights,” including same-sex marriage, on the basis that sexual orientation was an inborn characteristic, and that it was contrary to our constitutional traditions to treat anyone adversely due to a trait over which one had no control or choice. In his 2011 letter to Congress announcing that the administration would no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act in court, for instance, Attorney General Eric Holder stated that “a growing scientific consensus accepts that sexual orientation is a characteristic that is immutable.” That claim was unsupported by scientific evidence when Holder made it. That claim is certainly false, as a recent review of the scientific literature by Clifford Rosky and Lisa Diamond (neither a friend of traditional sexual ethics) conclusively shows.

Even so, in April 2015 the president called for an end to what he called “conversion” therapies for same-sex attracted youths. In fact, the president would ban a lot more than any sexual orientation change regimen. He would effectively make it illegal for a psychologist or psychiatrist to discuss with anyone under eighteen the conflicts between his or her sexual feelings and that person’s own long-term goals and interests. The president would brush aside a teen’s expressed desire to develop stable heterosexuality. He would ignore overwhelming scientific evidence that the vast majority (80-90 percent) of teenage boys and more than half of teenage girls who report same-sex attractions (and in some cases, a homosexual or lesbian identity) turn out by age twenty-five or so to be peacefully heterosexual, in favor of a policy to make professional assistance during these passing difficulties illegal. The president’s policy would entail that the traumas and pathologies that so often underlie these expressions of homosexuality and lesbianism be left untreated, all so that the afflicted youth can be “affirmed” in their self-reported sexual identity.

In this case, the president had much of the scientific establishment behind him, for it too has bought into the ideology of sexual subjectivism and has sought to marginalize those professionals who engage these teens in discussions to get at the root of their issues. In his remarks justifying repression of these professional efforts, Obama relied on the bane of scientific research—the anecdote, salted heavily with gratuitous attributions of a cause-and-effect relationship to coincident facts. Obama cited the case of a transgendered youth who committed suicide, sometime after his parents refused to consent to his “transition” to female. The parents also insisted that he undergo therapy to help him accept his male identity. The president implied that this resistance to “transitioning” to female led this young man to suicide.

It is obvious from a glance at the facts surrounding Joshua “Leelah” Alcorn’s death that he suffered from a variety of psychological difficulties, including depression and deep social alienation. No competent professional—much less the commander-in-chief of the United States—could diagnose the etiology of his suicide.

It is curious that President Obama marshaled support for his opposition to sexual orientation counseling by citing this case of gender dysphoria. The imagined connection seems to be that “Leelah” Alcorn was a boy who was attracted to boys, and may have sought to “transition” to female partly in order to become heterosexual. The president’s position is evidently that a boy who wishes to become attracted to girls should not be allowed professional help to do so, but that a boy who wishes to actually become a girl should have access to all the professional help he desires.

Now the Obama administration has gone all in on its pro-transgender ideology. The federal government recently sued North Carolina and threatens it—and school districts and state agencies across the nation—with draconian penalties unless they toe the administration’s line on how to treat teens who believe that they were “assigned” the wrong sex at birth. The administration has decreed that civil rights provisions about “sex” discrimination must be informed by a definition of “sex” dictated not by the facts of nature but by the self-interpretation of the relevant fourteen-year-old. The administration would thus require every municipal recipient of federal funds to make the girls’ restroom available to boys who “self-identify” as girls. No accommodation of these troubled teens short of that—say, by making sure that there is a unisex restroom readily available—will do.

The basis for this uncompromising stance is clearly that using the restroom of choice makes these conflicted boys feel like they are being accepted as girls, and that this is a happy outcome for the afflicted teen.

It is not. There is no scientific evidence that treating boys as girls solves these teens’ genuine, and usually serious, psychological and emotional problems, as the research and clinical experience of Dr. Paul McHugh (among others) reliably shows. Gender dysphoria—unease with one’s sex as male or female—deserves to be treated compassionately and competently. But affirming the desire of anyone suffering from it to be treated as if he is a she, and vice versa, leaves the emotional and psychological problems hidden behind the claim untreated. (And in no case is sex-reassignment surgery ever medically indicated.) The compassionate and professionally competent approach to treating those with gender dysphoria is to help them to solve their underlying problems, and so to help them to come to live peacefully as the male or female that God created them.

President Obama has not said that science is to be the alpha and the omega of government policy. Nor should he: science by itself does not have the capacity to generate the moral norms, including norms of justice, that are essential to finally justifying any purposeful human action. But science very often generates information and insights vital to deliberation and choice of social policy. This is true with regard to what today might be called “adolescent sexual health.” And in spite of his triumphalist advertisement of fidelity to scientific fact, Obama has sacrificed the well-being of our nation’s youth on the altar of ideology.


The myth of racist Britain

How official anti-racism divides us all.

We live in strange times: the less real vicious or violent racism there is in the UK, the more we are beset by campaigns, laws, surveys and scandals about the ‘growing problem’ of British racism. What’s that all about?

Hired by the council to make an anti-racist video in an Essex school a few years ago, Adrian Hart was struck by ‘the contrast between the exuberant playground of children and the “racism awareness” drama workshops they were about to attend’.

Out there in the playground, black and white primary-school pupils were unselfconsciously messing around together like primary-school pupils do. Meanwhile, inside the classroom, what sounds like the Essex equivalent of the Legs Akimbo school drama group (from League of Gentlemen) were preparing to teach these same children how to be more wary of one another and ‘Watch out for Racism!’. That contrast, says Hart, made him ask himself: ‘What the hell were we doing there?’ It’s a good question, which he sets out to answer in his short and punchy new book, That’s Racist: How the Regulation of Speech and Thought Divides Us All.

Hart draws on his own experience of campaigning against racist attacks in 1980s Britain – ‘a truly racist place to be’, where the authorities led the race war on immigrant and ethnic communities – to show how far normal people’s attitudes to race have changed for the better over the past 30 years. Today, by contrast, we are faced with an army of state-backed crusaders hunting ‘fantasy racism… the racism of the past’ among the masses.

Driven by the conviction that there must be a hidden epidemic of racial prejudice beneath the surface of society, the authorities are now intent upon ‘slaying the menace of zombie racism’ by pursuing a policy of zero tolerance towards any word or deed that might possibly be construed as unintentionally tinted with racism, from the classroom to the football stadium. The result, says Hart, has been to create and exacerbate divisions in society, and to foster a culture that ‘stifles our ability to speak, act and even think freely’.

Hart focuses on the powerful influence of the Macpherson report of 1999, into the Metropolitan Police’s handling of the murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence by a gang of white youths in south London. With Sir William Macpherson of Cluny effectively reading from a script written by a gang of anti-racism experts, his report went way beyond the botched police investigation into that crime and became the ‘launchpad for a new kind of official orthodoxy, which is every bit as divisive as traditional racism’.

Macpherson’s report asserted that Britain was awash with both ‘institutional racism’ and ‘unwitting racism’. There might appear to be a contradiction between those concepts, but not in the weird world of official anti-racism. Here, institutional racism was not about powerful institutions in society, but about individuals within them. As Hart has it, ‘Transposed on to society as a whole, institutional racism is, according to Macpherson, what happens when the mass of people (that’s you and me, the masses) go to work for organisations’. Especially as the masses are all infected with ‘unwitting’ racism, whether we know it or not. In line with this, the Macpherson report created the legal definition of a racist incident as anything that the victim or any other person believes to be racist. That subjective definition has become a licence for racialising British society over the past 15 years.

Hart shows how the elite (who are of course immune to the unwitting racism that the rest of us carry around) have pursued ‘zombie racism’ post-Macpherson, using zero tolerance policies to police language on the automatic assumption that the hidden problem of racism is getting worse.

Which is why monitors and drama groups end up in Essex schools lecturing children to watch out for racism that is not there, while teachers are obliged to tick boxes and record thousands of ordinary playground moments as racial incidents, pursuing a government policy based on ‘the assumption that children are conditioned, from birth, by the persistent racism of their parents’ generation’. And why we have witnessed a crusade against the ‘spectre’ of ‘hidden’ racism in football, based on the assumption that those ugly people who play and watch the beautiful game need to be re-educated.

The result of this new ‘racial correctness’, says Hart, has been to pigeonhole black and ethnic-minority people as perennial victims, and to demonise white people (especially the working-class ones) as unwitting but unreconstructed racists. Little wonder that official anti-racism has helped to exacerbate divisions rather than overcome them.

In a striking illustration of how far things have gone, Hart notes the tendency of some observers to imply some sort of parallel between the murder of Stephen Lawrence and the trial of former England captain John Terry for allegedly calling Anton Ferdinand a ‘fucking black cunt’. One journalist wrote of Lawrence’s mother, the now-ennobled Doreen, sitting in court ‘to see if another race-related crime had been committed’. Hart observes that ‘the comparison with the Lawrence murder, implicit in such genteel misinterpretations of the working-class experience of football, was that the gap between offensive language and murder was not that great’.

We end up, Hart concludes, in a multicultural mess where there is less racism yet heightened racial and ethnic sensitivities and a hardening separation between ‘diverse’ cultural identities. Where the cry ‘That’s racist!’, directed at anything anybody finds unpleasant, is an immediate and unquestionable call for censorship. Hart experienced this himself five years ago when his Manifesto Club report, The Myth of Racist Kids, was condemned for daring to question the orthodoxy by those for whom any such challenge is a case of ‘racism denial’. Ultimately, says Hart, ‘the biggest casualty in this process is the capacity to debate’.

In the end ‘That’s racist!’, along with such fashionable ripostes as ‘Check your privilege!’, is another way of repeating the dominant cultural prejudice that You Can’t Say That. Fortunately, there are still those like Adrian Hart who can, and will.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


16 August, 2016

The false rape claims never stop coming in Britain

A daughter admitted lying about being raped by her father after reading Fifty Shades Of Grey - because she wanted to 'teach him a lesson'.

The girl confessed she had 'made the whole thing up' after just seven minutes of questioning by her father's defence barrister, who asked her about the 'striking similarities' between her story and the E.L. James novel.

Her father was cleared of eight counts of incestuous rape over a six year period after the judge directed the jury to acquit him.

Writing on her blog, barrister Cathy McCulloch said: 'She had described not only what her father had allegedly done, but how her body felt as a result.

'The only odd thing was the use of certain words, phrases and descriptions of how she felt which seemed beyond her years.'

She said her client mentioned his daughter's favourite book was 'about a millionaire who takes a young woman under his wing and “teaches her about art”', adding: 'He had no idea what Fifty Shades of Grey was about'.

Ms McCulloch said her instructing solicitor's representative bought a copy of the novel and overnight found 'too many striking similarities' between the daughter's police interview and the book to be a coincidence.

She continued: 'I raised the striking similarities between her interview and the book. She suddenly broke and said I was absolutely right. 'She had made the whole thing up because she was angry with her father and wanted to teach him a lesson.

'I asked her whether she had got all the ideas from Fifty Shades of Grey. She confirmed this book, and others – which she named.'


Civilization Causes 'The Patriarchy'? Fire, Alphabets Called Sexist

Much of feminism has bucked traditional gender roles. Feminists of bygone eras have argued women deserved the right to vote, have the ability to work in many of the same jobs as men, and even that men were just as capable of cooking and cleaning as women were. They were absolutely right.

However, present-day feminism has gone completely off the rails.

For example, a supposed science article published in the New York Times presents the idea that the discovery of fire led to The Patriarchy (TM). Yes, the article actually says that:

Negative cultural consequences came with fire, too -- and continue to leave an imprint.

Anthropologists have speculated that inhaling smoke led to the discovery of smoking. Humans have long used fire to modify their environment and burn carbon, practices that now have us in the throes of climate change.

Fire is even tied to the rise of patriarchy -- by allowing men to go out hunting while women stayed behind to cook by the fire, it spawned gender norms that still exist today.

Um ... really?

To state the obvious, one could easily argue that the fact that men are unable to nurse might have also had a significant impact on why women were left behind on hunts. Since they were home, it just made sense for them to cook while they were there.

Oh, but fire's not the only mark of civilization that is to blame for the rise of the evil Patriarchy.

If you're reading this, you're familiar with something called the alphabet. In any language, an alphabet is necessary to form a written set of symbols used to represent sounds.

And writing is all sexist and stuff. At least that's what Leonard Shlain, uh, writes:

Of all the sacred cows allowed to roam unimpeded in our culture, few are as revered as literacy. Its benefits have been so incontestable that in the five millennia since the advent of the written word numerous poets and writers have extolled its virtues. Few paused to consider its costs ...

One pernicious effect of literacy has gone largely unnoticed: writing subliminally fosters a patriarchal outlook. Writing of any kind, but especially its alphabetic form, diminishes feminine values and with them, women’s power in the culture.

So, today's lunatic argument appears to be that civilization itself causes The Patriarchy.

Well, if that's the case, then feminism is really and truly screwed.

After all, I know plenty of women who prefer civilization to the uncomfortable and dangerous life of prehistory. Women dying at the ripe old age of "in childbirth"? Men being ripped apart by wild beasts as they battle to put sustenance on the rock that serves as their "table"? That may sound like utopia to the New York Times and Leonard Shlain, but let's see if they follow through and really live like that.

More importantly, how many feminists want to live like that?

That's what I thought.


Poll: Religious Liberty, Homosexuality Top List of Political Issues U.S. Churchgoers Hear from Pulpit

A new Pew Research Center poll released Monday reveals that most American churchgoers, 64 percent, hear about political and social issues from the pulpit and the top three social and political issues that churchgoers hear discussed are religious liberty, homosexuality, and abortion.

Thirty-two percent of churchgoers surveyed said they’ve heard clergy preach in defense of religious liberty and just two percent said their clergy doesn’t believe that religious liberty is really under attack. Forty percent total have heard the issue mentioned.

Thirty-nine percent of churchgoers have heard homosexuality mentioned by clergy, with 20 percent hearing their clergy speak out against homosexuality and 12 percent speaking in favor of its acceptance.

On the abortion issue, 22 percent say they have heard sermons against abortion, while three percent have heard clergy argue in support of abortion. Twenty-nine percent say they’ve heard the issue brought up.

Sixty-four percent of those who said they regularly (at least once or twice a month) attended religious services say they heard clergy at their church or other place of worship speak about at least one of the following issues: religious liberty, abortion, immigration, environmental issues, homosexuality, and economic inequality.

On immigration, 19 percent of churchgoers report that their clergy have emphasized the need to welcome and support immigrants, compared with four percent whose clergy argued for stricter immigration enforcement.

Churchgoers reported that 16 percent of their religious leaders spoke out in favor of protecting the environment, while one percent said they’ve heard their clergy speak out against environmental regulations.

In general, respondents indicated that discussion of political issues is not all that common in their congregations. Twenty-nine percent said that political and social issues were discussed only sometimes, and 49 percent said they were discussed rarely or never. Only seven percent said their clergy spoke “often” on social and political issues.

The Pew survey was conducted online and by mail June 5 - July 7 among a nationally representative sample of 4,602 adults.


ADF Int’l. Lawyer On European Hate Speech Laws: ‘Subjective Feelings' Cannot Be Policed

Paul Coleman, senior counsel and deputy director of Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) International, says that European hate speech laws are based on people’s “subjective feelings,” which cannot be policed.

But their goal is “to silence those who go against the political or cultural orthodoxy of the day.”

“The process is the punishment,” said Coleman, author of Censored – How European Hate Speech Laws are Threatening Freedom of Speech.

Speaking at a Heritage Foundation event in Washington, Coleman, who is British, said that one flawed justification for hate speech laws is that certain speech directly harms other people. 

“The problem with this justification is it is impossible to police. You just can’t police people’s subjective feelings and people’s subjective response to hurt,” he explained.

Coleman pointed out that there are countless hate speech laws, especially in the European Union, which deal with hot button issues that are “clamped down on by the state,” such as Islam, immigration, gay marriage, sexuality and gender identity.

He explained that multiculturalism and establishing a “global village” are valued in European society to the point that those who seek “absolute truth” have to be “put down.”

Hate speech laws have "devastating effects, but it's not necessarily about convictions; it's not necessarily about people being locked up in jail,” said Coleman. Rather, “the process is the punishment in many of these cases.” 

In one case he cited, "you have a conversation that leads to a prosecution that leads to an acquittal, and in the process, a business and a livelihood is destroyed."

Coleman argued that one of the multiple problems with European hate speech laws is the difficulty of even defining hate speech.

“What we find is [that the term] hate speech is vague. It has just a lot of vague synonyms that struggle to define what it means,” Coleman said.

“What one person considers to be hate speech another person certainly wouldn’t consider that to be hate speech, and a lot of the laws are based not on objectively what was said,  but on the subjective response of the hearer.”

Coleman also pointed out that because “words change over time,” hate speech laws force citizens to keep up with specific words in order to know what is and isn’t legal.

But even though the premises of many hate speech cases are “ridiculous,” Coleman points out that “a lot of them are used to silence debate and to silence those who go against the political or cultural orthodoxy of the day.”

Coleman also criticized the rationale that certain speech, even if it is not criminal in and of itself, “will lead to violence.”

He pointed to Germany during the Weimar Republic, the predecessor to Nazi rule, saying that its “primitive forms of hate speech laws” were “absolutely useless at stopping the rise in Nazism.”

According to Coleman, the same logic applies to present-day Europe.

“We are seeing the rise in extremism, we are seeing a rise in violence, we are seeing a rise in terrorist attacks, we are seeing a huge rise in political and societal tension, all of which is in a context of more and more and more criminal restrictions on speech.

“So the narrative, the idea that these laws are somehow helping to stem this is not supported.”

Coleman expressed concern with the trajectory of hate speech laws, pointing out that many Europeans are willing to give up their “freedom of expression” and “civil liberties” because they think that “this is the price we pay for the peace that we have.”

But Coleman noted that hate speech laws are not “static.” At first, they only dealt with race, but were later expanded to include religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and sexism.

Not only is the scope of the laws increasing, but the “threshold of what’s being caught by hate speech laws is getting lower and lower,” while the “means of restricting speech” is expanding, he said.

Coleman concluded by rhetorically asking if these sorts of restrictions on speech could happen in the United States.

“As we look at the course of the last century, as we look at legislation needing to be passed to protect the First Amendment, I think we have to say that it most certainly could happen here,” he said.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


15 August, 2016

Multicultural surgeon  is being sued by 57 male patients - including some claiming they were left INFERTILE

A celebrity surgeon from Channel 4's Embarrassing Bodies is being sued by 57 male patients after he allegedly left some infertile.

Cancer surgeon Manu Nair, who appeared as an expert on the hit medical show, allegedly treated patients for prostate cancer when they did not have the disease.

One man claims he was left impotent when Nair 'cooked' his prostate gland after zapping him with controversial laser treatment.

Others were apparently given a laser treatment known as High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HFIU) even though it has not been approved by the drugs watchdog National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE).

Dozens of patients have now instructed medical negligence lawyers to sue Nair over claims they suffered serious health problems following treatment by the surgeon.

Many of the patients have already received letters from both Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham and Spire Parkway private hospital in Solihull, West Midlands - where the doctor previously worked - informing them that a number of Nair's practices had been reviewed.

He is also under investigation by the General Medical Council (GMC) and is subject to nine different restrictions - including that he cannot work in private practice - while that probe takes place.

Solicitor Adam Wright from Irwin Mitchell said: 'It is concerning to be contacted by so many patients affected by problems after being treated by the same surgeon.

'Sadly, the sanctions placed upon his practice by the GMC came too late in the day for the large number of patients already affected who appear to have suffered serious damage to their health as a result.'

One patient who is taking legal action claims he was left infertile and suffering from incontinence after the surgeon carried out a new laser treatment on him in 2012.

The man claims he was diagnosed with aggressive prostate cancer and was told by Nair he faced a 'life or death situation'.

But a month after receiving the controversial HIFU treatment the patient was in agonising pain and passed two large pieces of tissue from his penis.

After being rushed to A&E he was told he had passed parts of his prostate gland which had been 'cooked' by the laser treatment.

The man, from Birmingham, now suffers from urinary incontinence and impotence and is unable to start a family with his wife-of-23-years.

He said: 'My whole way of life has changed and being told that I can no longer have children is just soul-destroying.

'I was relatively young when I was diagnosed with prostate cancer and I had so much to look forward to in my life.

'I was horrified when I discovered that I had passed part of my dead prostate gland after treatment I had been recommended by Dr Manu Nair. 'It was the single most painful experience of my life and it has left me with permanent damage.'

The patient has also been reviewed by a different consultant urologist who told him he was 'misled to some extent that this was aggressive cancer'.

Nair has previously been suspended by the GMC and continues to be under investigation by the public body.

He has been suspended from private practice and can only work within an NHS setting under supervision.

Nair was suspended by the Heart of England NHS Trust, which runs Heartlands Hospital, in April 2014 and resigned in July last year.

He now works at the Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust under the conditions imposed by the GMC.

Lawyers at Irwin Mitchell said the patients' complaints include prostate cancer diagnosis issues and the delivering of HIFU treatment not approved by NICE.

Other complaints include unnecessary nephrectomy - removal of kidney - unnecessary green light laser treatment and incomplete prostate removal potentially leaving malignant tissue behind.

The Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust has already admitted that in one case that it was negligent for Dr Nair to recommend HIFU treatment and that there was a failure to inform their patient that there was no follow up data regarding the treatment.

A drop-in legal clinic patients worried about treatment they received from Nair is being held by Irwin Mitchell on Monday in Birmingham.


Supreme Court: School Can Keep Biological Female Out of Male Restrooms—For Now

The U.S. Supreme Court has determined that the Gloucester County, Va., school board may prevent a biological female from using the boys’ restroom—at least for now.

The court was responding to a request from the Gloucester County School Board to stay an order issued on June 23 by U.S. District Judge Robert Doumar. That order said the board must allow G.G.—a 17-year-old biological female who says she identifies as a male—to use male restrooms (but not male locker rooms) while the court reviewed G.G.’s case on the merits.

Judge Doumar had previously dismissed G.G.’s claim that the Gloucester County School Board had discriminated against her under the terms of Title IX of federal education law, which says schools that receive federal funding may not discriminate on the basis of “sex.”

However, in April, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit decided that the district court should hear G.G.’s case again, reconsider allowing her to use male bathrooms at school while doing so, and give deference in the case to the Department of Education’s current interpretation of what the word “sex” means in Title IX.

The appeals court said:

“At the heart of this appeal is whether Title IX requires schools to provide transgender students access to restrooms congruent with their gender identity. Title IX provides: ‘[n]o person . . . shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.’ 20 U.S.C. § 1681(a). The Department of Education’s (the Department) regulations implementing Title IX permit the provision of ‘separate toilet, locker room, and shower facilities on the basis of sex, but such facilities provided for students of one sex shall be comparable to such facilities for students of the other sex.’ 34 C.F.R. § 106.33. In an opinion letter dated January 7, 2015, the Department’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) interpreted how this regulation should apply to transgender individuals: ‘When a school elects to separate or treat students differently on the basis of sex . . . a school generally must treat transgender students consistent with their gender identity.’”

In a one-page ruling published yesterday, the Supreme Court stayed the order issued by Judge Doumar in June telling the Gloucester County School Board to let G.G. use the boys’ restrooms---but only while the Supreme Court itself considers whether to take up an appeal of the case from the Gloucester County School Board.

The Supreme Court decision to temporarily lift Judge Doumar’s order won on a 5-3 vote, with Justice Stephen Breyer joining Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justices Clarence Thomas, Anthony Kennedy, and Samuel Alito. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kegan did not support the court’s order.

Breyer said he did so as a “courtesy,” publishing this explaination in his concurrence to the court ruling:

“In light of the facts that four Justices have voted to grant the application referred to the Court by the Chief Justice, that we are currently in recess, and that granting a stay will preserve the status quo (as of the time the Court of Appeals made its decision) until the Court considers the forthcoming petition for certiorari, I vote to grant the application as a courtesy.”


Opposition to immigration fueled by realistic concerns

Six in ten British voters think immigration is piling too much  pressure on schools, hospitals and housing – well above the worldwide average.

A study conducted across 22 countries around the globe also revealed widespread alarm that terrorists may be posing as refugees to sneak through border controls.

Pollsters Ipsos MORI found that the UK is one of the countries most worried about the pressure placed on public services by rising immigration levels, with 59 per cent concerned. This compares to an average of 50 per cent worldwide.

Some 49 per cent of Britons think there are too many immigrants in the UK, which is in line with most countries worldwide.

Almost four in ten also say immigration has made it harder for native Britons to get a job.

Just 31 per cent of those surveyed in Britain support closing our borders to refugees – but 63 per cent believe terrorists are pretending to be refugees.

Across all of the countries, four in ten say that their country should close its borders to refugees entirely.

Concern about migrants integrating into British society is in line with the global average, with 40 per cent agreeing that most refugees will integrate successfully, while 47 per cent disagree.

Half of Britons – 51 per cent – think that refugees are actually economic migrants instead, while 37 per cent disagree.

On average worldwide, six in ten think terrorists are pretending to be refugees, with more than seven in ten believing this to be the case in Turkey, Russia, India, Hungary, Germany and the United States.

On average, more people say immigration has generally had a negative (45 per cent) rather than positive (20 per cent) effect on their country.

At least six in ten in Turkey, Italy, Russia, Hungary, France and Belgium say immigration has had a negative impact.

Half across the 22 countries say there are too many immigrants in their country.

When it comes to the economy, on average 44 per cent of those polled worldwide think immigration has made it more difficult for home nationals to get jobs.

Bobby Duffy, managing director at Ipsos MORI’s Social Research Institute, said: ‘Immigration is a global issue, with very few countries entirely at ease with current levels, control and the impact of the mass movement of people.

‘None of the 22 countries surveyed have a majority of people saying that immigration has had a positive impact on their country – although there are a very wide range of views within this.

‘The sense of pressure in countries like Turkey, Italy, Hungary and Russia is particularly clear from the survey.’

He added: ‘Britain has in fact become more positive about many aspects of immigration. This might seem surprising given that the desire to reduce immigration was undoubtedly a key reason for the Brexit vote.

‘But we need to bear in mind that the survey shows that on each individual measure there are still more people who are negative than positive about immigration.’

The countries taking part were Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, France, Britain, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the US.


Labour's Frank Field sparks row by saying Britain should let jihadis go to Syria so they can die fighting for ISIS

Senior Labour MP Frank Field was branded irresponsible last night after claiming it was ‘fine’ for radicalised British adults to join Islamic State in Syria – because if they were killed, it would boost Britain’s security.

The former Minister declared he was worried ‘not one iota’ about British extremists going to fight in Syria.

Mr Field said: ‘I think we should have no worries about letting them go because the chances are some of them will get killed and that increases the security of this country.

‘If people want to practise their evil, better go and practise it with the mates who’ve actually taught them about this evil than inflict it on my constituent or anybody else.’

But last night, Tory MP Alec Shelbrooke condemned Mr Field’s remarks, claiming the Government was right to seek to stop British jihadis from getting to Syria.

He said: ‘Not only is this irresponsible, it’s ill-thought-out. ‘It’s not looking at the long-term consequences – even if British jihadis in Syria don’t come back here to carry out terrorism acts, they can act as a recruiter of more people from this country to go out there.’

Speaking on BBC Radio, Birkenhead MP Mr Field made clear he was not talking about the case of Kadiza Sultana, the 17-year-old British schoolgirl who ran away to join IS last year and is now understood to have died in an air strike in Syria.

Her case was ‘horrendous’, said Mr Field, stressing the Government should draw a clear distinction for children, and saying it had a duty to protect young people and should focus most effort there.

But it was a different matter when it came to adults. ‘If adults want to go over there and get killed, fine,’ he said, although he made clear it was important to know if any British jihadis were returning to this country.

Environment Minister Therese Coffey criticised his approach: ‘I am somewhat surprised by your assertion to just allow people to go abroad and they might get killed.’

Last night, Mr Field stood by his remarks about adult Britons travelling to fight for extremists in Syria.

He said: ‘I am relaxed about letting them go but I am unbelievably tough about letting them back in again.  ‘The resources used to control their going should be used to prevent them coming back.’



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


14 August, 2016

Another unpleasant multicultural doctor in Britain

Both Hindus and Muslims from India and Pakistan come from sexually very repressed cultures.  But sexuality is a strong force and it tends to burst its bonds in one way or another -- often in inappropriate ways.  We see the same happening with pedophile Catholic priests.  And in England the incidence of various sorts of sexual offending is high among Indians and Pakistanis, particularly if they are Muslims. 

Consider the guy below, probably married to a middle-aged dumpling he didn't even choose for himself.  He goes out on the street and sees occasionally floating by bright young things  with short skirts, low-cut tops, long blonde hair and red lips.  Such self-presentation is meant to be attractive and it is.  But our multicultural brown man has never had one of those and knows he is not allowed to.  It must create frustration.  And for his own peace of mind he should probably stay home on Friday and Saturday nights, when the skirts get shorter, the necklines get lower and the behavior gets more expansive.

Hanging on to traditional restraint in a society  that exhibits a lot of open licentiousness is hard.  There is a loss of ambient  support for traditional cultural values.  So although subcontinental men do sometimes behave in disgusting ways, it is worthwhile understanding the full context of it.  Where no physical harm was done, we could well accept that the brown men concerned are themselves victims of an out-of-context culture.  As below, the men concerned can lose distinguished occupations because of their foolish behaviour.  That is victimhood too

A former Harley Street doctor bombarded female colleagues with lewd and 'heaving breathing' phone calls at 2am after he got drunk following a wedding anniversary meal with his wife, a tribunal has heard.

Consultant psychiatrist Nadir Omara, 49, is said to have rang two women a total of 20 times during their night shifts at a clinic after he drank up to five double whiskies in front of a movie whilst his spouse was asleep in bed.

During one call, Omara told one of the support workers 'I want you to open your legs' before 'huffing and puffing' as if carrying out a sex act, the hearing was told.

Police were called in after the women - called Miss A and Miss B in court - complained of being frightened, upset and shocked by the sexually explicit calls between 1.20am and 2.30am at the Abbeycare addiction treatment centre, near Newmarket, Suffolk.

One of the women recognised the voice of Omara - an expert in treating addictions - and he was arrested the following day. He claimed he was only ringing the clinic as he needed medication and was 'burping and retching' at the time of the calls.

But last February he was jailed for 12 weeks after a court hearing at which he fainted in the dock when he was told he was going to prison. He was subsequently referred to the General Medical Council.

The Medical Practioners Tribunal Service in Manchester this week was told that the incident occurred in November last year after Omara, from Rushmere St Andrew, Ipswich, had been out for dinner with his wife.

The clinic is an independent drug and alcohol rehabilitation unit where people can ring any hour of the day to seek help and Omara would assess suitability of patients who needed help on detoxification programmes.

Counsel for the GMC, Nicholas Walker said: 'Shortly after 1am the first phone call came and it was silent. The second call followed but it was not until 1:20 he spoke to Miss A. He asked Miss A what she was doing and introduced himself as James and told her he was watching a bad film.

'Miss A asked what he wanted and he said "I want you to open your legs". Miss A told Dr Omara she was not going to be spoke to like that and put the phone down. He rung back and said he was a bad person, told her she didn't know what he had done and asked her to open her legs once more. She put the phone down but felt obliged to keep answering it in case a patient rung.

'She feared a genuine patient would call and she would not be able to deal with it. In his next call to her he told her he wanted her to 'make him come'. By 2:30am the phone has rung almost continuously and consistently. In that period Miss A thought it was about 20 times.

'She described those calls as vulgar and depressing and she had made a note of the number. She was frightened and upset and she went to wake Miss B and handed her the telephone.

'Miss B knew Dr Omara, she was able to describe him as being breathless, excited and panting, moaning and groaning, she said it sounded like he was masturbating. He was huffing and puffing and Miss B terminated the call and the doctor phoned back a further five or six times.

'Miss B recognised the number as there was a white board in the general office at the unit which has written on the doctors' telephone number.'

Mr Walker added: 'There were 18 calls between 2:25 and 2:54am. The police, through the telephone and the details of the doctor, were able to trace him and he was arrested the next day and interviewed. He said it was his anniversary and he had enjoyed a meal with his wife. He said that he had stayed downstairs after the meal to finish a film, whereas she went to bed without him.

'He denied the offences in their entirety, he said rather than this vulgar and abusive pattern of telephone calls, he had phoned the unit but that he was unwell due to drinking alcohol he had bought that night.

'He was unable to say exactly how much he had drunk but it was a good portion of a bottle of whiskey. He thought it was a medical emergency. He said he introduced himself as Nadir the consultant and asked for mediation to stop him exhibiting the effects of the alcohol.

'He said he called two or three times and said he had started vomiting and forgot the conversation. He said he was not masturbating but burping and retching and that there was no sexual gratification.

'He said he measured his drunkenness at seven out of 10. He said he had a very good relationship with the staff at the unit.'

Mr Walker added: "This is a case where the doctor has never accepted the underlying conduct. Given the circumstances and the conviction, he was in a senior role, he was the senior practitioner, the consultant psychiatrist.. These were two people beneath him that should have been treated with the dignity and courtesy that one expects a fellow professional to extend in those circumstances."

Omara was not at the MPTS hearing, which will decide whether Omara should be able to continue working in the profession.

At his criminal trial in January the doctor who also worked at addiction rehabilitation charity Focus12, claimed he had bought a bottle of whiskey on his way home from the anniversary meal. After his wife went to bed, he said he began watching the film American Hustle and had 'four or five' double whiskies.


'Feminist zealots really do want women to have their cake and eat it' claims Conservative MP in speech to 'Justice for Men and Boys party'

Politically correct males are pandering to 'militant feminists' who want to have their cake and eat it, a Tory MP has told a men's rights conference.

Tory MP Philip Davies complained about the drive for 'so-called equality' that favours women in a speech that has emerged online.

He was speaking at an event last month for Justice for Men and Boys, an anti-feminism party whose 2015 election manifesto suggests men should receive their pension earlier than women because they work harder and die younger.

It also promoted a policy that the Government should scrap schemes which attempt to increase the proportion of girls and young women studying science, technology, engineering and maths subjects.

The party also claims the state education system is run with the objective of advantaging girls over boys and suggests parents should be able to send their sons to schools with male-only teachers because female teachers award lower grades to boys.

In a 45-minute speech posted online, Mr Davies denied that there is 'an issue between men and women'.

He said: 'I think the problem is being stirred up by those who could be described as militant feminists and the politically correct males who pander to this nonsense.

'This has led to an equality but-only-when-it-suits agenda that applies to women. The drive for women to have so-called equality on all the things that suit the politically correct agenda but not other things that don't is of increasing concern to me.'

He said while there are campaigns to increase women on company boards and in Parliament, there has been a 'deafening silence' when it comes to increasing the number of men who have custody of their children or have careers as midwives.

He added: 'In fact there seems to be a deafening silence on all the benefits women have compared to men. In this day and age the feminist zealots really do want women to have their cake and eat it.

'They fight for their version of equality on all the things that suit women but are very quick to point out that women need special protections and treatment on other things.'

In Parliament Mr Davies has regularly raised concerns about what he calls the 'justice gender gap', complaining that the justice system favours women by sending fewer to prison and not forcing them to wear uniforms.

Asked about his appearance at the Justice for Men and Boys conference, Mr Davies told the Guardian: 'I don't accept the premise that the only place that people can speak on anything is a place where they agree with everything that organisation stands for.

'I don't agree with everything the Conservative Party does but I'm still a Conservative MP.' He told the newspaper he was not paid for the appearance.


What a brainless bitch!

A prime example of young people thinking they know it all.  She went abroad to do or succour evil so she deserves no pity.  It is also true, however, that she was the victim of a Satanic religion, a religion of death

A British schoolgirl who fled the UK to join ISIS in Syria has been killed by an airstrike in Raqqa.

Kadiza Sultana, 17, is thought to have died earlier this year after her home in the terror state's stronghold city was hit by a bomb believed to have been dropped by a Russian plane.

The teenager had quickly become disillusioned with Isis and told her family last summer that she wanted to return home.

Tonight ITV News revealed that Kadiza, who was one of three Bethnal Green schoolgirls who left their homes to join so-called Islamic State, is dead.

Her sister Halima Khanom said: 'We were expecting this, in a way. But at least we know she is in a better place.'

The schoolgirl had been living in Syria after leaving her home in East London during the Easter 2015 school holidays to join Islamic State.

She travelled with friends Amira Base and Shamima Begum, who were both just 15 when they fled and are believed to still be in Raqqa. All three had attended Bethnal Green Academy in Tower Hamlets.

It is believed that all three wed fellow foreigners who were fighting for the Islamic State. Khadiza's husband was an American national of Somali origin who died late last year.

The trio shocked the nation after leaving their A-Level courses and their families to marry ISIS fighters in Syria.

Following Kadiza's death it has emerged she had become disillusioned with life in Syria and was planning to flee the ISIS-stronghold to return to Britain.

From their East London flat her family were hoping to help to smuggle her out of Raqqa and across the border into Turkey, in a bid to be reunited with the former schoolgirl.

It is believed Kadiza was killed in a strike on a residential building before she could flee, after the property she was staying in was obliterated by the airstrike in May.

Her family were informed of Kadiza's death by other people in Raqqa. Her sister Halima, said: 'We were expecting this in a way. But at least we know she is in a better place. 'We do not wish her name to come up in the headlines again. She is gone and we would like to respect her wishes.'

Tonight ITV News will broadcast interviews given by Kadiza's sister, Halima, during the tense months when the desperate family hoped to secure her return to the UK. The interviews were filmed by filmmaker Joshua Baker and include recordings of phone calls between Halima and her younger sister before her death.

They are especially poignant after ITV News established, via contacts in Raqqa, the reports about Kadiza's death.

The Bethnal Green schoolgirls are among more than 800 Britons believed to have left the UK to join Isis or other militant groups in Syria and Iraq.

It is thought that at least 250 have since returned. Some have faced prosecution on arrival in Britain, with others allowed to re-enter society under the watch of security services.


NJ: Man beaten with crowbar for wearing Trump shirt

A 62-year-old male was assaulted in a Friendly's parking lot for wearing a Donald Trump T-shirt, Bloomfield police reported Tuesday.

The victim was walking on West Passaic Avenue in Bloomfield at 5:41 p.m. Wednesday when a male in an older gray compact vehicle questioned him about his shirt of the Republican presidential candidate. The suspect directed profanities at the victim as he continued to follow the victim.

The suspect followed the victim to the restaurant at 1243 Broad St. The suspect then approached the victim armed with a crowbar. An altercation occurred, with the suspect striking the victim several times, police said.

The victim sustained injuries to his forearms, hands and thighs. He was treated at the scene.

The suspect fled prior to police arrival, according to authorities. 


Feminist movie flops

The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that the summer film "Ghostbusters" is heading for a financial loss.

Pamela McClintock writes:

As of Aug. 7, Ghostbusters had earned just under $180 million at the global box office, including $117 million domestic. The film still hasn't opened in a few markets, including France, Japan and Mexico, but box-office experts say it will have trouble getting to $225 million despite a hefty net production budget of $144 million plus a big marketing spend. The studio has said break-even would be $300 million.

The film, which was released July 15, is a 2016 reboot of a 1984 comedy. The new version became the subject of controversy even before it was released, with some fans of the franchise claiming the all-female cast was a politically-correct desecration of the original, which starred four men.

Some feminist cheered for the reboot as an antidote to perceived sexism in Hollywood. Writing in the Los Angeles Times, feminist Andi Zeister observed, "Those of us outside the industry but with a filmgoer’s stake in making sure the medium is rich, and evolving and representative — yes, we’ll be buying tickets to 'Ghostbusters' and wondering why Hollywood still seems genuinely flummoxed by the prospect of reaching more than half the population."



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


8 August, 2016

Incompetent multicultural dentist in Britain

A woman has been awarded £10,000 compensation after a series of dental blunders left her with a 'tooth like a shark'.  Lauren Field, 21, first noticed pain and a strange lump in her upper gum when she was 10 years old.

However when her family dentist failed to refer her to an orthodontist and did not pull the milk tooth out, the adult tooth began growing horizontally out of her gum for the next eight years.

Because the tooth grew horizontally, it cut against her lip and made it bleed.

The graduate, from Bletchley, Milton Keynes, returned to dentist Dr Ashwin Bechar several times - but she says he refused to refer her to an orthodontist.

Ms Field said he insisted the milk tooth would fall out on its own - but when it didn't her adult tooth grew through her gum.

She said her confidence was 'shattered' because of the blunder, which led to children at school teasing her because of her appearance.

Ms Field said: 'I thought he'd pull the baby tooth out, but he said it would fall out naturally. It caused really bad ulcers.

'When I closed my mouth you could see a lump on the side of my face. 'I was so embarrassed as kids at school would point it out.  'My confidence was shattered.'

It wasn't until she was 18 and had visited three separate dentists that she was referred to a specialist.

Lauren said: 'I am having to go through this traumatic experience as an adult.  'It's so frustrating because, had Dr Bechar taken the right action immediately, it would have saved me so much time and suffering.'

Lauren is now worried employers won't take her seriously as she is forced to wear braces to job interviews.  She said: 'I am having to wear braces to job interviews, which makes me feel so self-conscious because I think they're not going to take me seriously.'

Dental Law Partnership helped Lauren land a £10,000 out of court settlement from Dr Bechar.


Israel accuses World Vision Gaza manager of siphoning off $50million intended to help starving people and transferring it to Hamas militants

A senior manager with a Christian aid charity siphoned off up to $50million intended to help starving people in Gaza and transferred it to militant group Hamas, Israel's internal security agency has claimed.

The Shin Bet has accused Mohammed el-Habibi, the Gaza zonal manager with World Vision, of a sophisticated scam to help the Islamic group build tunnels and purchase arms.

They added that he diverted millions to the group, which rules Gaza, creating fictitious humanitarian projects and doctoring inflated receipts.

El-Halabi, who is in his late 30s and from Jebaliya in the Gaza Strip, was arrested in June as he was crossing from Israel into Gaza.

The Shin Bet said he underwent Hamas military and organisational training in the early 2000s and was 'planted' by the group at World Vision in 2005, where he climbed the ranks to become director of the Gaza branch.

His LinkedIn profile says he previously worked at UNDP, a UN agency.

The Israel Security Agency said in a statement: 'He began to conduct security operations for Hamas' military wing which was essentially exploiting the organization's funds for Hamas' fortification.'

They also claimed that el-Halabi initiated fictitious projects meant to help farmers, the disabled and fishermen and would falsely list Hamas operatives as workers on those projects and write up inflated receipts.

Companies hired to carry out certain projects under fictitious tenders were 'made aware' that 60 per cent of the project's funds were destined for Hamas, the Shin Bet statement said, adding that some of World Vision's budget was used to pay the salaries of Hamas operatives.

The agency also said el-Halabi would transfer to Hamas materials such as steel, digging equipment and pipes that were meant for World Vision agricultural assistance.

Thousands of packages with food and medical aid received monthly would allegedly be diverted to Hamas operatives and their families rather than reach Gazan civilians.

Beyond arms purchases and tunnel digging, the funds also helped build military bases, including one constructed in 2015 built entirely from British aid money, according to the statement.

The security agency said el-Halabi also divulged intelligence about employees working for United Nations agencies and other aid groups who were also assisting Hamas, without elaborating.

World Vision, a US-based aid group that works in nearly 100 countries, said in a statement on its website that it was 'shocked' by the allegations and said it has 'no reason to believe' they are true.

An Israeli Foreign Ministry official said that Kent Hill, a senior official with the organization, was holding meetings in Israel over the accusations. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the meetings were private.


Welfare Is Not Friendly to Family Formation

The last thing couples should face when contemplating tying the knot is a “marriage penalty.” Sadly, thanks to America’s onerous welfare system, that’s something many couples are taking into account. “Does Social-Welfare Policy Affect Family Formation?” That’s the question at the heart of a new study, “Marriage, Penalized,” by researchers W. Bradford Wilcox, Joseph P. Price, and Angela Rachidi. The evidence, while not comprehensive, does appear to draw a link between welfare eligibility and marriage among certain groups.

According to the study, “Today, more than four in ten families in America receive some kind of means-tested government assistance, from Medicaid to food stamps. The expanding reach of the welfare state means that a substantial share of lower-middle-class couples with children receive such aid — and many of these couples receive more generous support if they are unmarried [emphasis added]. That’s especially the case if their total income as a cohabiting couple is not considered in determining their eligibility for assistance, as often appears to be the case.” As the authors go on to deduce, “To use the term of public policy analysts, these couples face a ‘marriage penalty,’ where it makes more financial sense for them to cohabit rather than marry.” For example:

“Our analysis of American couples whose oldest child is two years or younger indicates that 82 percent of those in the second and third quintiles of family income ($24,000 to $79,000) face this kind of marriage penalty when it comes to Medicaid, cash welfare, or food stamps. By contrast, only 66 percent of their counterparts in the bottom quintile (less than $24,000) face such a penalty.”

This translates to a form of marriage disincentive for some couples. “In sum,” the executive summary adds, “our findings suggest that marriage penalties related to means-tested benefits do not discourage marriage among the poorest families in the U.S. But marriage penalties may play a role in discouraging marriage among lower-middle-class families.” The welfare state, though its designers had good intentions, has many problems, one of which the evidence suggests is a detrimental effect on the family — a core feature of a healthy, bedrock society.


Judge Anti-discrimination law by results, not good intentions

Helen Andrews comments from Australia

In the midst of public debate about exemptions to anti-discrimination law and whether they should be expanded or eliminated, we often forget to take a step back and ask the larger questions.

Like "Does anti-discrimination law work?".

Thousands of complaints are filed every year under the various anti-discrimination provisions in Australian law, from the Racial Discrimination Act to the Fair Work Act.

But do these laws ultimately help the groups they are intended to?

Not always. The wage gap between men and women, for example, narrowed dramatically prior to the passage of the Sex Discrimination Act 1983 and plateaued after it. The law ratified larger cultural changes that were already well in motion. It was not itself an engine of change.

Sometimes these laws can even hurt the groups they are supposed to help. Workforce participation among the disabled went down after the passage of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992.

The same thing happened in the United States after the Americans with Disabilities Act 1990 --workforce participation among the disabled went down.

The laws themselves are partly to blame, since they incentivize employers to act defensively.

If there is a risk that hiring an employee who belongs to a protected class will leave an employer vulnerable to a lawsuit (or, in the case of disability, an expensive accommodation claim) sometime in the future, it makes sense for managers to err on the side of caution.

Too often, discussion of anti-discrimination law gets bogged down in culture war battles and ostentatious moralizing, and no one stops to consider these laws in a pragmatic light, on the basis of evidence.

Any future reform or consolidation of anti-discrimination law should begin with weighing the costs and benefits -- especially since it turns out the benefits may be a lot fewer than most people assume.


The Emperor’s New Gender

 You see all kinds of unusual in the city. The other day, I saw something unusual, but increasingly common. I was walking behind two transgender women. Not to be confused with what we knew as transvestites back in the day, who usually identify as gay men and seem to regard the whole thing as a bit of performance art and a lark.

Transvestites wouldn’t have taken themselves so seriously, and wouldn’t have expected everyone else to either. Your garden-variety trannie would have probably laughed in your face if you’d started tiptoeing and fawning over them with Cultural Marxist newspeak like ‘gender fluid’ or ‘gender binary’, or whatever other term replaced some previously-acceptable-but-now-unthinkable term three minutes and thirty-seven seconds ago.

But a funny thing happened. Much like the dot com boom, the similarly intangible sub-victim boom took off like a rocket. People who were previously miserable, insufferable, and in need of micro-management over every aspect of their lives fell over each other in a race to the finish line of perceived persecution.

Instead of seeking help for various mental illnesses and frequent suicidal compulsions like any pro-active person might do, they seemed to embrace misery and conscious self-defeatism as a loud and proud (even with all that shame) lifestyle choice. It was a veritable gold rush of whiny prospectors in search of rich veins of sub-group persecution they could call their own.

Sub-victim mining claims were lodged left right and centre with websites like Salon.com and Slate. Transitional honkies like Rachel Dolezal and Shaun King staked claims on rich deposits of trans-racial gold. Lena Dunham found a rich vein of feminist ore beneath a perceived glass ceiling that inexplicably still allowed her to prosper in a ‘sexist patriarchal’ entertainment industry despite not being particularly charming, not particularly attractive, not particularly talented, and not particularly entertaining. It was a sub-victim gold rush that made a select few excessively wealthy, and made the rest look incredibly foolish, though most of us were too polite to tell them so.

The thing that surprised me most about these two dudes or dudes in transit wasn’t them, but the hard wired reactions of myself and pretty much every other pedestrian regardless of age, gender (bona fide gender that can be confirmed by DNA testing), or race was exactly the same.

I did a double-take, then politely and conspicuously pretended not to notice them. The young African woman coming the other way did a double-take, then politely and conspicuously pretended not to notice them. The elderly Asian man walking with the aid of a cane did a double-take, then politely and conspicuously pretended not to notice them. A young, very hipster-looking guy, who you’d assume wouldn’t be fazed by too many things in life and would appreciate the irony of what he was seeing, did a double-take, then politely and conspicuously pretended not to notice them.

Then I saw a woman with a small child coming the other way. The woman similarly did double-take, then politely and conspicuously pretended not to notice them (I was seeing a trend). As soon as I saw the look of disbelief in the face of the child, the ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ theme started playing in my head.

The child attempted to point, but his embarrassed and very aware of her surrounds mother grabbed his arm mid-raise and hurried past the pair, red-faced with a sheepish embarrassed grin. Honesty from the mouths of babes averted.

I imagine that these two individuals put the stares down to the lecherous leering that attractive women are subjected to every day by sexist males, and the jealous stares of less-attractive and less-stylish women. Never would it have occurred to them in a million years that the trigger for these stares was as simple as seeing the unusual spectacle of a couple of dudes in dresses.

It occurred to me soon afterwards that the reaction of myself, and every other person save the innocently honest child was a good metaphor not only for the transgender agenda, but for standard policy regarding most Cultural Marxist pet causes. It is the art of conspicuously pretending not to notice the bleeding obvious.

For people who were allegedly born as the very ether of womanhood inside, these two honestly weren’t fooling anyone. Only a psychologically confused dude would assume that garish furs, gaudy pearls, way too much makeup, an evening gown, and a pesticide-like dousing of perfume without any feminine subtlety was appropriate for a lunchtime CBD power walk. I’m sure any genuine ladies reading would see such a spectacle as something akin to caricature, and would be confused as to how somebody who truly feels such a strong connection to womanhood inside can produce such a poor approximation of it.

Much like the old fable about the Emperor’s New Clothes, we’re made to feel ashamed about doing a very natural double-take over something that doesn’t appear quite right, then play a disingenuous and harmful game of politeness and enabling of mental illness.

I totally get that there are people who don’t feel they were born into the right body. Who will never feel comfortable in their own skin. Who are mortified every time they look in the mirror and see a person who looks completely alien to them. They’re called anorexics. We try and help them get better through psychiatric help. We don’t help them buy laxatives and discourage them from eating. Nor do we tell them they look fantastic, beautiful, and brave at 38kg.

There is little tangible difference between anorexia and the whole transgender issue. Any family who has been touched with anorexia will plainly recognise the parallels and the madness of enabling transgender people.

Both are mental illnesses with strikingly similar symptoms. Both have an unusually high mortality rate by suicide. Both are very much first world manifestations. A doctor would be medically negligent to feed into the first, yet the transgender issue has become politicised to such an extent that many practitioners are certainly too afraid to explore mental illness as a possible root cause before green-lighting catastrophic body modification.

Another disorder strikingly similar to the transgender phenomenon (and Cultural Marxism in general) is Munchausen Syndrome. Munchausen Syndrome is a psychological disorder that sees the sufferer deliberately keeping him or herself ill to gain sympathy, usually with non-lethal ingestion of poison. It’s a manufactured state of victimhood, surely a medical manifestation of regressive leftism if ever there was one.

Even more disturbing parallels to the transgender debate appear when you look at Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy. MSBP occurs when a relative (usually a parent) keeps a child sick with non-lethal doses of poison in order to get attention and sympathy themselves. We now see all of these coincidentally heavily left-leaning parents deciding that their very effeminate son or masculine daughter has been born as the wrong sex and requires gender reassignment immediately and without measured consideration.

The yearning for victim status is so great among these self-loathing types that they will take a child who, in all likelihood, would otherwise mature into a happy and fulfilled gay or lesbian (or, God forbid, heterosexual) and make their life as traumatic and doomed to end in tragedy as humanly possible, just so that they can feel suitably progressive. Throwing family members under the bus to appease regressive left doctrine is a common theme for these types. A decade ago, a gay or lesbian child would have satisfied their cravings for victimhood. But in 2016, a gay man is virtually part of the patriarchy and just won’t cut it. Gender reassignment will, if you’ll pardon the pun.

Anorexia sufferers are 47 times more likely to commit suicide than members of the wider community. Post-operation transgender individuals are 27 times more likely to commit suicide than those in the wider community. A staggeringly disturbing statistic when you consider that only 0.3% of the population identify as transgender, and fewer still are post-op. There are only two conclusions to be drawn from this mortality statistic. The first is that gender reassignment is a horrible mistake in at least a sizeable proportion of cases. The second is that many if not most of these individuals are clearly psychologically disturbed, and even a full attainment of their desired identity won’t bring the peace and stability that so many of us take for granted.

Drugs and medical procedures with clear tendencies toward failure are discontinued or legislated against all the time. An elderly relative of mine with depression was taken off Lithium because some users were experiencing damage to their liver over a prolonged time. The fact that this patient was elderly and enjoyed a higher quality of life on Lithium, and probably wouldn’t live long enough to see any of these negative side effects, were irrelevant to the medical profession. She went through an unstable and unhappy last few years for the sake of a politically correct and politically popular decision.

A few patients with liver issues was enough to dramatically reduce the quality of life that millions enjoyed. Millions who to a man would probably have been willing to take that risk as the benefits outweighed the minor risks. Meanwhile, a procedure that in all likelihood will make a mentally disturbed person 27 times more likely to commit suicide, that will see a rate of post-op regret of 20%, and remains scientifically unproven to improve quality of life in any way, shape, or form not only continues, but is encouraged and promoted as a positive healthy lifestyle choice.

One in six or 16.666% of people with a tattoo regret the decision. Less than the percentage of regret of those who opt for gender reassignment. We’d all be outraged if a parent allowed their child to get a tattoo. Nobody would take issue with our opinion. Yet the regressive left are happy for parents to opt for a life path for their children that has a 20% rate of regret, and makes them 27 times more likely to end their own life. Nobody would tolerate any non-political medical procedure with such spectacular failure rates, but add a pinch of social justice, a clove of regressive leftism, and a half a cup of mental illness, and you have something that is popular conformist opinion in 2016, but will be spoken of in the same hushed infamous tone as thalidomide in decades to come.

Believe me, as someone with a few libertarian leanings, the conclusion I’ve arrived at is a tough one. Sleep with whoever you want to, dress as you like, do what you like as long as it doesn’t hurt anybody. Live and let live. But therein lies the problem. We have a duty of care to at least try to protect the clearly mentally imbalanced from themselves. I’m sure none of you would actively encourage someone with severe anorexia by telling them they look great, or encourage someone with severe depression to jump off a bridge because that’s their right. Why then are we so eager to get behind such a self-destructive (both literally and figuratively) medical procedure? Libertarianism has its limits, and we definitely don’t need to be medically enabling somebody’s psychosis.

The regressive left takes a different approach to transgender than they do with other victim sub-groups. Usually the left regards Blacks for example as fragile, completely hopeless, and incapable of self determination without their big government micromanagement to maintain order. On the transgender side of things, they take people that they should be realising have issues with self-determination, and who could do with a little micromanagement (not to mention some medication) to bring some semblance of happiness to their lives, and give them free reign to explore their psychosis.

The Hans Christian Anderson tale ‘The Emperors New Clothes’ was strangely prescient in regard to this whole situation. Nobody actually believes that these men are women, or that these women are men. Nor do they believe that these people are making life decisions of sound mind. They just have to pretend they do out of fear of being ostracised. They dare not say that they don’t see any suit of clothes, and won’t until a child points as the one that I saw attempted to and cries out, “But he isn’t wearing anything at all!”



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


7 August, 2016

Another mad Muslim goes on the attack

Living in a Western country is very stressful for a Muslim.  They see every day that Westerners have all the things that are denied to them, sexual opportunities particularly.  And no pressure to hoist your bottom into the air five times a day.  But the better standard of living means that Muslims still want to live in Western countries.  Some risk their lives to get to such a country. 

But we all experience various stresses and Muslims mostly manage to keep it all together for the sake of the various advantages they have in Western countries.  But when an individual Muslim is mentally or socially marginal, adaptation may fail.  And, when it does, Islamic teachings about killing infidels come to the fore.  Killing infidels is seen as a way of going out with a bang.  A sad life and death can be made meaningful and even devout that way. 

So Islam is the problem.  Its teachings turn desperates into murderers

Counter-terror police will today forensically study computers belonging to the Russell Square knifeman as a neighbour claimed the 'impressionable' teenager could have been inspired by ISIS.

Scotland Yard believe Zakaria Bulhan, 19, a Norwegian national of Somali origin who moved to the UK in 2002, was not 'motivated by terrorism' but its officers are trawling his possessions for extremist material.

But neighbour Parmjit Singh, a BBC radio DJ known as 'DJ Precious' on the Asian network, said he had known 'impressionable' Bulhan for seven years, adding: 'His mental health problems are a scapegoat.'  The 36-year-old said: 'They said he had mental health issues but that was not the boy I knew.

'The news of his mental illness is completely new, we never heard that. Honestly, I think his mental health problems are a scapegoat.'

Asked what he thought motivated the attack, Parmjit said: 'I think peer pressure, hanging around with gangs. He wasn't working, he was hanging around with Somalian boys and I think they had possible links to serious ISIS people - not directly, but they see all this stuff and are inspired by it.

'Why would he attack an American woman tourist in a random attack? I think boys have put pressure on him to go there and do something. He was very impressionable growing up'.

Police are guarding the council flat in Tooting he shared with his mother and siblings as they investigate his motives for murdering American Darlene Horton, 64, in front of her husband Dr Rick Wagner.

The retired teacher was stabbed in the back with a kitchen knife and bled to death on the pavement in the frenzied six-minute attack on Wednesday evening that left five others injured.

A police source said: 'We are expecting counter-terror officers this afternoon who will take away his computers and electrical equipment to study.'

Friends have described their shock at the knife attacks, describing him as a 'teacher's pet' and a 'devout Muslim' who would love debating religion.

Online postings show a man named Zak Bulhan is interested in Islamic study, and in another he pledges support to former Guantanamo Bay inmate Moazzam Begg.

Rakesh Naidu, 18, said: 'I can't believe it, I'm just telling myself it must be a mistake. We used to get really competitive over grades in maths and debate religion all the time.

'He was a devout Muslim and he would passionately defend it, but he respected my opinion too. He was a bit socially awkward but as far as I knew he didn't have mental health problems.

'He wasn't the jock but he wasn't the kid who ate glue at the back of the class. He just flew under the radar.'

Today a family friend claimed the teenager had tried to kill himself three times this year before he stabbed to death an American tourist in front of her 'absolutely devastated' husband.

Bulhan was arrested on suspicion of murder after dozens of armed police – fearing a terror attack – brought him down with a Taser stun gun.

Today it has emerged that Bulhan, who was held miles from his south London home clutching a knife, appears to have been depressed and had tried to kill himself three times in the past six months, family friends have said.

One told The Times: 'He has been very unwell. He wanted to kill himself. I saw his mother with an ambulance outside their flat and she said Zac had called it because he wanted to hurt himself. He's called the ambulance about two more times because he was feeling unwell. His mother was very afraid'.

His local mental health trust have not commented on his case, but it is understood he was living at home not in care. They are working with detectives

Ambulances were repeatedly called to the council flat he shares with his mother and sister  in Tooting because the teenager had wanted to harm himself, it has been said. One neighbour had claimed that his parents' separation may have upset him and he had become more reclusive in recent years.


More multicultural doctor scum in Britain

Saripalli is a Telegu (South Indian) name

A text-pest doctor who bombarded female colleagues with sexually motivated messages including telling one nurse 'I'm like Jason Bourne - I will find you' has been suspended.

Dr Kalyana Saripalli, 39, behaved inappropriately towards three separate female members of staff whilst working for Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital Trust, London, and Stoke Mandeville Hospital, in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.

A tribunal hearing was told that on one occasion he told a colleague 'you make me horny' and on another occasion told a nurse 'If you can't accept the truth, that I long for you, I would rather be dead' before adding 'Do you fancy a date?'.

Appearing at the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service in Manchester, Saripalli, had admitted allegations of harassment but denied that his messages were sexually motivated. But the tribunal decided the behaviour was sexually motivated and he was banned from working as a doctor for 12 months. He will have to undergo a review at the end of those 12 months if he wishes to return to medical practice.

Tribunal chair Michelle Codd told Dr Saripalli: 'Your actions did constitute harassment which the tribunal considered to be a serious failure on your part. 'You displayed a lack of self-control by continuing to send a significant volume of unwelcome messages. 'It should have been obvious to you that your actions were inappropriate and causing distress.

'The tribunal found that your persistence in sending the messages demonstrated a serious lack of maturity and awareness.

'The tribunal was satisfied that your behaviour towards your colleagues was entirely at odds with your role as an experienced doctor and represented a serious departure from the paragraphs of GMP set out above. 'It had no doubt, when viewed in aggregate, that your behaviour constituted misconduct that was serious. 'The public would not expect a doctor to act in the way that you did.

'Your behaviour towards these three female colleagues brought the medical profession into disrepute. 'On three occasions your actions betrayed an element of coercion and unwarranted persistence. 'Your actions failed to show proper respect for your colleagues.'

The behaviour started in September 2011 when Saripalli, a senior house officer with the spinal orthopaedic team at Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital Trust, began texting a nurse at the hospital, referred to as Colleague A, telling her he loved her after she tried to tell him to stop sending her messages.

When Colleague A did tell him to stop contacting her the doctor said 'I love u.ill miss u, thought I was getting a life, guess not, ill call u in half an hour', Colleague A responded 'I don't think that's a good idea... You don't know me to love me. I'm sorry you feel that way but it doesn't change anything'.

On another occasion, Saripalli said: 'Hope ur ok, as for me, every moment in ur absence seems like ages. I wish I was dead, u still have a hearty long life to live, ill manage, don't stress urself.'  Shortly after this he said 'Wondered if u fancied dinner on Tuesday evening/night'.

The doctor then moved to Stoke Mandeville Hospital and told Colleague D 'you make me horny' before explaining to her that he used to 'keep his girlfriend up all night'.

Saripalli asked Colleague D out for dinner and 'would not accept no as an answer' when she declined his offer he said 'what, do you think I am going to try and get you into bed after a cup of tea?'.

Tom Gilbart, for the General Medical Council, said: 'Colleague A began working as a nurse in August 2011 she was employed by a company that provides nurses and she complained about advances being made by the doctor.

'The text messages were sent to Colleague A by the doctor, he would ignore requests to stop contacting Colleague A, those (requests for him to stop) were made by Colleague A and Witness B. 'The text messages demonstrate that he continued to send messages, even though she made it clear she did not wish to hear from him.

She said 'I told you you were being too full on for me, I don't want to hear from you again, you have made me feel uncomfortable'.

'Contact from the doctor continued and he was also texting Witness B who told him the best thing he could do was back off, telling him it was not appropriate.

At one stage, Witness B sent a message saying 'you need to get over her, it's become the talk of the ward for all the wrong reasons, it's harassment'.'

The doctor sent Colleague A messages saying 'hey my room needs a clean up aswell, do u mind once ur done with ur's, ill b urs once its done', 'I still love you, lets build a future together' and 'I can't afford to miss those eyes'.

The messages continued with him saying 'I'm Jason Bourne in reality, I will find you, as I said before, you are my destiny.' and 'If you can't accept the truth, that I long for you, I would rather be dead' then, 'you fancy a date?'

Saripalli then started sending text messages to another nurse, referred to as Colleague C, who was on placement at Guy's and St Thomas'. She texted him making it clear she only wanted him to speak to her about work, during work hours.

Mr Gilbart continued: 'He sent four text messages after that, which disregarded the clear request.

'Between August 2013 and August 2014, Dr Saripalli was working at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in the A&E department. 'On July 3 2014 he asked Colleague D out for dinner.

On July 10 he asked her where one could obtain ketamine and asked her about piercings and tattoos.

He then asked if he could speak to her in private and she agreed, thinking it was something confidential about a patient.

'He asked personal things which made her feel uncomfortable. He told her 'it surprises me you're with a woman' and proceeded to ask her to go out for dinner and to go to his flat for a cup of tea.  He made her feel quite intimidated.

'As they walked out for a cigarette he said 'can you keep a secret? You make me horny' before telling her he used to 'keep his girlfriend up all night'.

The conversation made Colleague D feel extremely uncomfortable.

The GMC case is that his behaviour on July 10 was sexually motivated and that was denied.

'Colleague D would have nightmares and wake up sweating. His behaviour was harassing and that matter has been admitted.

An investigation was conducted by Buckinghamshire Health Trust, he was interviewed and notes were taken.'


Germany rejects 'intersexual' as a separate gender as court rules there are only males and females

A person with a genetic abnormality who identifies as neither woman nor man cannot be entered in Germany's birth register as an 'intersexual', a federal court has ruled.

The plaintiff, Vanja, was born in 1989 and registered as a girl.

Women have two X chromosomes, while men have one X and one Y chromosome. But Vanja provided the Federal Court of Justice with an analysis showing one X chromosome but no second sexual chromosome.

Advocacy group Dritte Option (Third Option), who represented Vanja, said the plaintiff planned to go to Germany's highest court, the Federal Constitutional Court.

In a ruling published today the court said German family law recognises only male or female and, although a legal revision in 2013 does allow people not to be registered as being of either gender 'it did not create a further sex'.

That meant the only option available to Vanja was to have the birth registration as a girl removed from the records and not replaced, an option the plaintiff said was not good enough.

The court said: 'The question of whether the previous necessity of being entered in the birth register as either male or female violated intersexuals' fundamental rights no longer arises.'

Vanja said: 'For intersex people, a third sex would record after decades of denial and making invisible finally the recognition and appreciation of their existence.

'The current solution to have no entry for me is just not the same as having a matching entry. In everyday life, as a protection against discrimination it makes a difference whether I can say "I'm officially inter" or if I have to invoke a void.'


‘The EU is close to death’: Bloc trade chief launches bitter warning amid fears Canada deal could collapse

The European Union's director general for trade has reportedly warned the bloc's trade policy is 'close to death' if its deal with Canada falls through.

The EU-Canada trade deal, which has taken seven years to negotiate, is one of the most comprehensive ever struck.

Jean-Luc Demarty said Brussels would have a 'big credibility problem' if the agreement collapsed.

Demarty spoke at the bloc's trade policy committee after France and Germany insisted that a trade deal with Canada - the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) - will have to be agreed on by all 38 national and regional parliaments before it can be signed off by Canada.

Notes from the meeting, leaked to Politico, say Demarty 'emphasised the outstanding importance of CETA' .

He spoke about how important it was to complete a very good deal and also how CETA is a test for the EU's trade policy.

'Canada is a third country which stands very close to the EU. If the EU is not able to ratify this agreement, the EU trade policy would have a big credibility problem; it would be 'close to death',' the leaked notes say.

An EU-Canada summit will take place on October 27 but the deal may still not have been ratified by then.

In July, Canada's trade minister said large parts of a free trade deal between Canada and the European Union should come into force next year, even though the EU's executive commission opted against fast-track approval.

'This is a really important and great next step,' Chrystia Freeland said in a interview.

The EU Commission says ‘it will remove customs duties, end restrictions on access to public contracts, open-up the services market, offer predictable conditions for investors and help prevent illegal copying of EU innovations and traditional products’.

Because CETA will eliminate all duties on industrial goods, European exporters are expected to save almost €600 million a year.

The agreement has also promised to fully uphold Europe's standards in areas such as food safety and worker's rights.

Negotiators finished the negotiations on (CETA) in August 2014 but it has not yet been ratified.

The deal is facing opposition from campaign groups and trade unions, who say CETA is as dangerous as their bete noire - a planned EU-U.S. trade deal called the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). They say the deals hand power to multinationals and are a threat to democracy.


Australia: New movie about the Cronulla disturbances

The Left cannot let the 2005 Cronulla events go.  It's one of the few hooks on which they can hang a claim that Australian are racist.  What actually happened was a reaction to very offensive behaviour on Cronulla beach by young Lebanese Muslim men.  Women were being harassed and the Lebanese were in effect claiming the beach as their territory.  Had the police done their job  nothing would have happened but for them to do anything might have been seen as "racist" so they did nothing. 

So when the men of the Shire saw the offensive behaviour going unchecked, a few of them reacted with a deliberate attempt to chase away the Muslims.  And that is the whole of it

IT’S one of the most confronting few minutes of a film you’re likely to see this year, showing Australia on one of its darkest days.

But, initially at least, it looks like the Australia of so many tourism commercials. Sun glistens down on a blue ocean in December. A chap dressed as Santa strolls along the sand as smiling swimmers bob up and down in the warm water. The tune of ‘we wish you a merry Christmas’ can be heard.

But something’s just not right. In footage, all taken from real news reports, there’s way too much booze. Police are on horseback. A helicopter buzzes overhead.

Two men, friends perhaps, shake hands and smile for a camera. All looks well. And then, out of nowhere, one of the two — the one who isn’t white — is attacked.

“That was the moment it stopped being the happy gathering and it just took that one aggressive action,” Abe Forsythe, the director of Down Under, which opens next week, tells news.com.au.

From there, it goes downhill fast. Car windows are smashed and police struggle to hold the crowd at bay. One man’s T-shirt reads ‘ethnic cleansing unit’; a tattoo across a chest says “We grew here, you flew here” while the crowd chants “f**k off wog, f**k off Leb”.

The film is sent in the immediate aftermath of the 2005 Cronulla race riots when Sydney was on tenterhooks waiting to see what would happen next.

“It’s incredible when you look through the footage. At the beginning of the day it was meant to be a peaceful protest and, as it built up, the mood changed.

“This act of solidarity, of an Anglo and Middle Eastern person, who were trying to help stop it spilling over, and all it took was one push for them to just flick a switch.”

And yet maybe the most surprising thing about the film, which follows two car loads of hotheads from each side of the divide, is it’s a comedy.

Mr Forsythe said it was a deliberate strategy. “We’re using comedy to shine a light on this issue in a way you probably wouldn’t if it was a straight drama because by making people laugh it makes it more accessible.”

But the opening scenes play an important role in providing the far from amusing context. “I felt people would go in knowing it was a comedy but I wanted to make clear upfront that even though it is, the subject isn’t taken lightly.”

Mr Forsythe says his film “doesn’t point fingers” at either side but rather, “it tries to encapsulate this mess and how, all of a sudden, things tip over.”

He started writing Down Under six years ago and say he did so because Australia wasn’t talking about what Cronulla meant.

“This is our way as nation, to pretend it didn’t happen, say ‘let’s not talk about it’ and hope it goes away.”

Last December, Australia did start talking about Cronulla again, on the 10th anniversary of the riots. Fears of a full scale riot didn’t eventuate but anti-fascist and anti-immigration protesters did come face-to-face on the beach once again.

While the film was ready to go, the makers decided not to release it last year for fear of being seen to cash-in on the anniversary or even provoke trouble.

Nonetheless, Mr Forsythe says the timing of the film’s release now has unintentionally coincided with the revival of Pauline Hanson’s career.

“I’d like to say its unsurprising but it’s not, it’s a repeat of the same problem we had before, that parts of society feel like they are not being heard and when you have someone like Pauline Hanson back into power they feel they have a voice.”

Nonetheless, Down Under runs the risk of poking the bear by getting a release in Cronulla itself, as well as a number of screens in western Sydney. Mr Forsythe said he was confident the comedy would bring people together.

“So much of what happened before was because we weren’t talking and even with Pauline in power, whether we like it or not, we have to listen to her and hopefully there is some way of finding common ground and moving forward,” Mr Forsythe said.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


5 August, 2016

Clint Eastwood: ‘We’re really in a pu**y generation’

He’s right, but he didn’t mention that the pussifying is being deliberately encouraged by authoritarian leftists/feminists as a means of weakening and controlling others

CLINT Eastwood is tired of America being overly sensitive.  “[Donald Trump’s] onto something,” he said in the September issue of Esquire.

“Because secretly everybody’s getting tired of political correctness, kissing up. That’s the kiss-ass generation we’re in right now. We’re really in a pu**y generation. Everybody’s walking on eggshells. We see people accusing people of being racist and all kinds of stuff. When I grew up, those things weren’t called racist.”

The 86-year-old actor/director went on to explain that the “pu**y generation” is all the people who say, “Oh, you can’t do that, and you can’t do this, and you can’t say that”. He added, “I guess it’s just the times”.

Though Eastwood hasn’t endorsed anyone for president, he revealed that he will probably vote for Trump because he feels Hillary Clinton is following in President Obama’s footsteps. Although, he does say Trump has “said a lot of dumb things”.

“So have all of them. Both sides. But everybody — the press and everybody’s going, ‘Oh, well, that’s racist,’ and they’re making a big hoodoo out of it. Just fu**ing get over it. It’s a sad time in history.”

As far as change, the Gran Torino star says he wants everyone to get to work and be more understanding. “Kick ass and take names. And this may be my dad talking, but don’t spend what you don’t have. That’s why we’re in the position we are in right now.”


How the blameless sick are paying the price of this HIV drug

Plans to fund nine life-changing medical treatments have been abandoned by the NHS after it was ordered to provide a controversial HIV treatment.

Officials had been poised to announce approval this week for a range of new devices and breakthrough drugs which would benefit children as young as two.

Toddlers with cystic fibrosis, children born deaf, adults who have lost their legs, and patients with cancer were among those who would have learned that they could receive the treatments for the first time.

But officials have been forced to scrap their plans after the High Court ruled on Tuesday that the NHS is responsible for providing a daily pill to prevent HIV infection among 10,000 gay men.

The revelation threatens to further inflame a fierce row about providing the controversial HIV drug, which critics say will encourage sexual risk taking.

Charities last night accused the NHS of using the row to hide severe funding problems within the Health Service.

A spokesman for the Rarer Cancers Foundation said: ‘It is unacceptable for NHS England to use the figleaf of having to find money for PrEP as an excuse to refuse funding for important cancer treatments.’

But others – who warn that the PrEP drug may give some men a licence to have unprotected sex – have warned that funding such a treatment is a waste of scarce NHS funding.

Many patients are already missing out on funding for other vital treatments. The Daily Mail revealed last week that three-quarters of hospitals now deny life-changing cataract operations to the elderly, a procedure that costs only £800 per eye.

Patients refused the surgery who live alone have become housebound, scared to visit friends in case they fall over and break their hips.

Barbara Hullah has cataracts in both eyes and was told by her optician that her left eye was ready to be operated on.

But following her referral to Harrogate and District NHS foundation trust, the 66-year-old was told that her case was not severe enough and she was not eligible for surgery.

Mrs Hullah, a retired sales assistant who also has osteoporosis, now struggles to read. She also lives in fear of falling over because she finds it hard to make out steps or a carpet edge.

She said: ‘My optician referred me to the hospital. But I got a call from the hospital saying that I wasn’t ready because my other eye only has a small cataract.

‘I’m angry. In the past when getting a cataract operation you didn’t seem to have to wait until you practically couldn’t see. I can’t read and it’s about the only hobby that I have – I can’t do physical activities because I’ve got osteoporosis.’

Mrs Hullah, from Harrogate, North Yorkshire, believes the decision is a ‘false economy’ because she could have a bad fall as a result of her deteriorating sight and have to spend weeks in hospital. 

The NHS is due to appeal against the HIV drug decision but has had to put aside £20million to pay for it in case the judges uphold the ruling.

Yesterday officials said they had decided to postpone funding decisions for 13 specialised treatments.

But the Mail can reveal that officials had decided to approve nine of the 13, a decision now abandoned in case the Health Service can no longer afford them. Officials last night confirmed that they would have announced funding for these treatments if High Court judge Mr Justice Green had agreed with the NHS that it should not have to pay for the HIV treatment.

An NHS England spokesman said: ‘These would have all been funded and we would have announced that yesterday if the judgment had gone the other way.’ Instead, the decision will be postponed for months – and if the NHS loses the appeal, the treatments may never be made available.

More than 500 patients are now left in limbo awaiting the final decision, which is not expected to be delivered until next year.

Many experts are fully in favour of the PrEP drug, which reduces the risk of HIV transmission by 92 per cent and has been described as a ‘game-changer’.

But others have warned that it is a strategy ‘fraught with danger’, allowing men to think they can have sex without condoms, despite being left unprotected against other sexually transmitted diseases.

The treatments now on hold include the first precision medication to help toddlers with cystic fibrosis breathe, high-tech hearing implants for deaf children, and bionic knees for people who have lost their legs.

Other treatments which would have been confirmed include stem cell transplants for a form of blood cancer, a drug for teenagers with sleep disorders, and a pill which will allow chemotherapy to be given for the first time to cancer patients with a rare salt disorder.

The others were a drug to prevent the rare growth hormone disorder acromegaly, one to tackle another hormone disorder called Cushing’s Disease which causes high rates of heart attacks and strokes, and one for a dangerous immune disease that can affect multiple organs at the same time.

Officials have also postponed decisions on four other treatments which were due to be refused, but have asked the drug companies to reduce their prices to be allowed to stay in the running.

Health charities expressed their dismay at the decision.

Among those to lose out are children waiting for ‘auditory brainstem implants’ – high-tech devices which could give the power of hearing to nine deaf children every year.

Sue Archbold, chief executive of the Ear Foundation, said: ‘Society still doesn’t realise the impact that hearing loss has on the individual and society as a whole.’

Some 45 very young children with cystic fibrosis were due to benefit from breakthrough drug Ivacaftor, which costs as much as £180,000 a year but makes a major difference for the 4 per cent of patients who have a certain genetic mutation.

James Barrow, head of external affairs at the Cystic Fibrosis Trust, said: ‘The implications of this decision are concerning as it creates uncertainty around when children will receive access to Ivacaftor.’

But the National Aids Trust accused NHS England of pitting different patient groups against each other.

A spokesman for the charity said: ‘To single just PrEP out as a policy which would be funded at the expense of others is invidious, prejudices NHS England’s position in relation to PrEP and raises serious questions as to the integrity and impartiality of NHS England’s approach.’


The Brazen Demands of Black Lives Matter

Instead of these gripes, how about some real solutions?

As if this election season had not already been enough of a mind-boggling, common sense-defying circus, along come more clowns to add to the antics. We refer to the Black Lives Matter movement, the latest incarnation of the racial grievance cartel, carrying on in the (not so) proud tradition of huckster race pimp Al Sharpton.

Some 60 groups associated with the Black Lives Matter movement have issued a list of policy demands. These demands include reparations for slavery, additional “investment” in education (including free education for life for all blacks), jobs programs, and an end to the death penalty, just to name a few.

On the question of reparations, how exactly do we atone for real injustices against past generations without punishing the innocent and the living? Well, here’s an idea: Since the Democrat Party is the party of slavery (the GOP was founded as an abolition party), and enacted Jim Crow laws, and since the KKK was the militant terror arm of the Democrat Party, perhaps we should confiscate all funds and assets of the Democrat Party and place them in a trust fund from which reparations will be paid.

Furthermore, in states with party registration, perhaps a fee of $25 for anyone registering as a Democrat is in order — the proceeds of which will also be placed in the reparations fund. This will allow the guilty party (or Party, as it were) to pay for its institutional sins, without punishing the innocent.

We will also agree to end the death penalty for innocent blacks, and what blacks are more innocent than the unborn? In the United States, blacks make up 13% of the population but account for a staggering 37% of all abortions. These tiny, defenseless black babies have committed no crime, yet are literally from the womb. In America, there are nearly as many black babies aborted as are born, and in New York City, more black babies are aborted than born.

Of course, for those black children that manage to escape the womb before being killed by a Democrat, there should also be legal protections. The Black Lives Matter movement began following the deaths of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Eric Garner and Freddie Gray. Martin was killed after he attacked a neighborhood watchman. Brown was shot and killed when, after a convenience store robbery, he attacked officer Darren Wilson and tried to wrestle his gun away. Garner died of a heart attack after resisting arrest. And Freddie Gray was a drug dealer who died while thrashing around in a police van following his arrest. None of these men would have died had they not been engaged in criminal activity.

Yet we must also acknowledge that police don’t always get it right, and in those instances when officers use excessive force, they should be held accountable, including prosecution and imprisonment if the facts of the case warrant such a verdict.

Interestingly, one of the demands of the BLM crowd is an end to the use of body cameras by police. One can only wonder why that might be. After all, if there is truly a war on black men by the police, and innocent young black men are being gunned down without provocation, one would think that BLM would want those atrocities captured on camera, showing for the entire world the veracity of their claims. If they are innocent, why would they not want video of these interactions?

Some of the other demands are simply non-starters.

For example, BLM demands include the end of private education in America, and putting all hiring, firing, curriculum and discipline issues in the hands of “parents, students and community members.” We can look at the absolute most expensive, worst performing school systems in major cities throughout the country, and most of them have one thing in common: They have been run by Democrats for decades. There is no legitimate reason why we should make all of the nation’s schools as bad as those run by Democrats.

Also included is “a guaranteed minimum livable income for all Black people,” to which we offer a counter-proposal of lowering taxes so that all Americans get to keep more of what they earn, thereby making living more affordable for all.

In a summary explanation of the demands, the BLM groups demand reparations for “past and continuing harms to African-Americans.” But rather than fund reparations for ongoing harms, we should enact policies that better the lives of black Americans so that there is no need for reparations.

For example, Democrat policies have utterly destroyed the black family, with nearly 75% of American black children born out of wedlock. Since roughly 85% of men in prison were raised in homes without a father, one of the best things we could do is acknowledge the importance of fathers to the raising of children, and enact policies that encourage marriage before childbirth, and stop paying rewards for unwed pregnancies. Likewise, minimum wages will be irrelevant if we are holding the national education cartel accountable for results, rather than sending these children out into the world completely unprepared to compete in a global economy.

Salvation for blacks in America, and for all Americans, comes not in the form of reparations, or yet another government program. It comes in the form of personal responsibility, morality, civility, education and individual freedom.

But that doesn’t bring money or power to the likes of Al Sharpton and the Black Lives Matter movement, so they aren’t interested. For those of us who truly believe that black lives matter, let’s reject the extortion racket benefiting the few and do what benefits the most.


NO to a racist constitution

Australia's basic law should treat all Australians equally:   No special favours for one race.  Fortunately, controversial referenda are usually lost in Australia.  The 1967 "aboriginal" referendum was unopposed and functioned by REMOVING references to Aborigines.  So blacks and whites are now treated equally.  Let us not backslide

Malcolm Turnbull is facing a fresh outbreak of internal dissent over the proposal to recognise Indigenous Australians in the constitution before talks about the referendum on Thursday with the Labor leader, Bill Shorten.

The South Australian Liberal senator Cory Bernardi told Guardian Australia on Wednesday “no case had been made” for recognising Indigenous people in the constitution.

Bernardi said years of discussion about recognition had failed to yield a concrete proposal to put to a referendum and as he was a “constitutional conservative ... it’s highly unlikely I’d agree”.

Fellow Liberal senator James Paterson told Sky News on Wednesday he was yet to be convinced constitutional change was the appropriate way to proceed.

“There is no place for race in our constitution,” Paterson said. “There should be no negative references to race, there should be no positive references to race. [The constitution is] the rule book of Australia. I think there is a role for symbolism in public life but I’m yet to be convinced the constitution is the place for that.”

The new bout of restiveness has been triggered by a proposal in Western Australia. The WA branch of the Liberal party’s youth wing wants to bring forward a motion at the state conference next week calling on the federal government to oppose recognition and campaign against constitutional change.

Bernardi told Guardian Australia a binding motion such as the one envisaged in WA would go against the culture of the Liberal party but, with that said, he was not, intrinsically, a supporter of the constitutional recognition proposal.

The prime minister will meet the Labor leader on Thursday to discuss both constitutional recognition and also the marriage equality plebiscite.

Shorten has been flagging a treaty as the next logical step after recognition and a number of Indigenous leaders are no longer interested in the incremental step of recognition.

At the Garma festival over the weekend, Noel Pearson, who is on the referendum council, called for a synthesising of the treaty and constitutional reform arguments.

“If we think they are somehow separate agendas, this whole agenda will fail,” Pearson said. “My synthesis is simply that constitutional recognition provides the hook that enables agreements to be made, and a Makarratta, a national settlement, to be made.”

The Labor senator Pat Dodson, who was a co-chair of the referendum council until he decided to stand as a Labor senator in the recent election, also spoke of a post-recognition settlement. “If there is no preparedness to do that, we are all wasting our time and the tax payers have been dudded,” Dodson said.

On Wednesday the prime minister was asked whether he was worried that the middle ground on this debate was being lost, given members of the government were digging in their heels, and Labor, with the backing of some Indigenous leaders, was already pitching about the next stage.

Turnbull told reporters it was “very hard” to change the constitution. He said he “earnestly” sought to achieve constitutional recognition.

“But there are some important steps that need to be achieved,” the prime minister said.

“Firstly, there needs to be agreement coming from the [referendum] council as to what language they would propose to put into the constitution and then we have to be satisfied, as I believe as all of us are in the parliament, people of goodwill be satisfied, that that language is language that meets the purpose, and of course is capable of winning support in the referendum.

“It is a very, very difficult business. Changing our constitution has proved very challenging and we shouldn’t underestimate the difficulty but we are committed to doing it, but we have to make the first step is to see the proposed language, proposed amendments from the council.”

The referendum council meets again next week.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


4 August, 2016

‘Western Europe is practically dead’: Polish terror experts lash out at the EU and slam Merkel's response to jihadi attacks

A former Central Investigation Bureau officer in Poland has claimed 'Western Europe is practically dead' and blamed Angela Merkel's migration policy for its demise.

Jacek Wrona slammed the German government's response to terror attacks while appearing on a Polish chat show alongside military historian Dr Rafal Brzeski,wPolityce reports.

Wrona compared the situation to the fall of the Roman Empire, saying: 'Europe is at the end of its existence. Western Europe is practically dead.

'These people live in a void, without ideas. And they come the young, who want to acquire wealth, as once did the barbarians. And they have the power.'

He said the EU is suffering because of political correctness.

'The worst problem for services is political correctness. We need a sober judgment,' Wrona claimed.

Dr Brzeski also criticised the German government's response to recent terror attacks. 'The Germans have had enough of this, which does not mean that the government has had enough. These are two different approaches,' he said.

Their comments come after five separate incidents in Germany between July 18 and July 26.

The attacks, two of them claimed by Islamic State, also left dozens wounded and have burst any illusions that the country is immune to atrocities like those also claimed by Islamic State in neighbouring France.

Dr Brzeski accused Germany of 'self-censorship' when it reports on terror attacks and said 'there is nothing worse than self-censorship in journalism'.

Munich was the scene of the bloodiest of the German attacks, on July 22, in which an 18-year-old German-Iranian gunman killed nine people.

Wrona said it would have been easy for the Munich shooter to get a gun because of free movement in the EU and 'the whole Balkans are flooded with weapons'.

Two of the assailants in the other attacks, a Syrian asylum seeker who blew himself up in Ansbach and a refugee from either Pakistan or Afghanistan who attacked people on a train in Bavaria, had links to Islamist militancy, officials say. The Munich gunman did not.

Critics of Chancellor Angela Merkel have blamed the attacks on her open-door refugee policy, under which over a million migrants, many fleeing war in Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq, entered Germany in the past year.

Merkel set out a nine-point plan on Thursday to respond to the attacks, including an early warning system for the radicalisation of refugees.

But she refused to reverse her welcoming stance toward refugees.

The German leader said the assailants 'wanted to undermine our sense of community, our openness and our willingness to help people in need'. 'We firmly reject this,' she said.

Merkel repeated her rallying cry from last year when she opened the borders to people fleeing war and persecution, many from Syria, which brought nearly 1.1 million migrants and refugees to Germany in 2015.

'I am still convinced today that 'we can do it' - it is our historic duty and this is a historic challenge in times of globalisation,' she said.  'We have already achieved very, very much in the last 11 months.'

President Joachim Gauck said he understood why many Germans were shaken after the attacks, but Germany would not submit to the assailants.

'They won't compel us to hate, like they hate,' he said. 'They won't hold us in the confinement of perpetual fear. We will remain what we are: a considerate, supportive society.'


The NBA’s Transgender Bathroom Advocacy Could Point to End of Women’s Sports

The NBA stepped into the culture war with its recent decision to move the 2017 All-Star Game out of Charlotte, North Carolina, citing “the climate created by HB2,” the bill that requires government single-sex bathrooms be available only to people on basis of the sex on their birth certificate.

When it decided to move the game out of Charlotte, the NBA released a statement:

"Our week-long schedule of All-Star events and activities is intended to be a global celebration of basketball, our league, and the values for which we stand, and to bring together all members of the NBA community—current and former players, league and team officials, business partners, and fans. While we recognize that the NBA cannot choose the law in every city, state, and country in which we do business, we do not believe we can successfully host our All-Star festivities in Charlotte in the climate created by HB2."

As a woman, I appreciate a different kind of “climate”—one where I can feel safe going to intimate facilities full of strangers. I think that the basis for who gets to use these facilities should be one’s biological sex. The NBA seems to disagree with this commonsense notion, instead believing that bathroom, shower, and locker access should be determined on the basis of subjective gender identity.

But bathrooms and locker rooms aren’t the only area where transgender activists could demand changes.

In fact, sports itself—not just the bathrooms used by its fans—could be affected.

Would the NBA’s sister organization, the WNBA, be willing to let any current NBA player who decides to identify as a female compete on a woman’s team?

Of course, allowing biological men into the WNBA could be unfair to current WNBA players and the many women and girls who aspire to a career in basketball. After all, the average male in his 20s outjumps 95 percent of all women of the same age, and only a handful of WNBA players can dunk. But if the NBA believes preferred gender identity, not biological sex, is what matters, it naturally follows that men who now identify as women, perhaps without even having any medical treatment, should play in the WNBA, not NBA.

Such a scenario may seem far-fetched, but the existence of separate men’s and women’s teams in sports is something that may soon be changing at the grade school and high school levels.

The Obama administration’s transgender guidance could require sports teams to be open to all based on gender identity, not on biological realities. My colleague Ryan T. Anderson writes that the guidance is unclear on what it requires of schools when faced with the issue of transgender students and their placement on sports teams:

When it comes to athletics, the Obama directives are confusingly vague, telling schools that they may not ‘rely on overly broad generalizations or stereotypes about the differences between transgender students and other students of the same sex (i.e., the same gender identity) or others’ discomfort with transgender students.’ So which team a transgender student athlete must be allowed to play on is unclear.

In Alaska, high school girls have already lost medals in track competitions because of their inability to compete with a male who identifies as a girl. In a video put out by the “Ask Me First” campaign run by the Family Policy Alliance, one of the girls who raced against this athlete speaks out about the unfair aspects of allowing biological males to compete in races against girls:

There was obviously one girl in each of those races who did not get to compete because of this athlete. It’s not fair scientifically—obviously male and female are made differently. There are certain races for males, and certain races for females, and I believe it should stay that way.

Subjectively identifying as a girl did not make this boy any slower on the track, just as subjectively identifying as a short person would not have changed the fact that he was clearly the tallest person in the race.

If all women’s sports are opened to those who identify as women, regardless of genetics, biology, muscle mass, physiology, hormones, and bone structure—in other words, regardless of sex—we’ll begin seeing many more girls and women who won’t be able to compete because of physical differences between men and women. This just isn’t fair to women athletes and would reverse the long fought battles to end discrimination against women and girls in sports.

The NBA’s decision to move the All-Star Game from Charlotte is an unnecessary use of cultural cronyism to promote a political ideology currently in vogue. And the ideology it is promoting may eventually lead to the demise of women’s sports as a unique venue where women can compete and win fairly.


These States Added Work Requirements for Food Stamp Recipients: Here’s How It’s Working Out

Several states have grappled with welfare reform. A few states that have incorporated work requirements have seen encouraging outcomes that should provide a blueprint for greater welfare reform efforts nationwide.

From March to April of this year, the number of food stamp recipients decreased by 773,134. This brings food stamp enrollment down to 2011 levels and represents the biggest drop in participation since 2005.

However, food stamp participation is still far higher than it was prior to the recession, as the recently released Index of Culture and Opportunity shows. Participation is expected to remain higher than pre-recession levels for the next several years, and so is food stamp spending.

Although food stamp participation grew rapidly during the recession, it was on an upward climb before then. Policies were put into place that made it easier for people to get on the program and stay there. Then, during the recession, the food stamp work requirement for able-bodied adults without dependents was suspended as part of President Barack Obama’s 2009 stimulus package. (The work requirement limits able-bodied adults without dependents to three months of food stamp benefits in a 36-month period unless they work at least part time, participate in a work program, or do community service.)

The decline in food stamp rolls between March and April of this year follows the re-establishment of work requirements in a number of states. On Jan. 1, 22 states had to reinstate the federal work requirement for areas of the state or the entire state because their waivers expired.

Some states did not wait until their waiver to end, however. Instead, they took a proactive approach to ensure that able-bodied adults were encouraged toward work.

Maine, one of the most proactive states in reinstating work requirements for food stamps, saw its caseload of able-bodied adults without dependents decrease by 80 percent within just a few months after re-establishing the work requirement.

Kansas has experienced similar results, seeing its caseload decline by 75 percent. Accompanying the decline in caseload has been an increase in employment and earnings for able-bodied adults without dependents.

The Foundation for Government Accountability identified that nearly 60 percent of Kansans who left the food stamp rolls following the establishment of food stamp work requirements found employment within 12 months and, “their incomes rose by an average of 127 percent per year.”

Indiana has experienced similar outcomes. Indiana reinstated work requirements in July 2015. Six months after reinstating these requirements, the state’s caseload of able-bodied adults without dependents decreased by 68 percent.

According to Indiana’s Family and Social Services Administration, “Nearly 5,000 Hoosiers who were receiving benefits in July are no longer receiving assistance because they obtained gainful employment and now have an income that exceeds eligibility standards.”

The vast majority of Americans support work requirements for welfare programs. Work requirements serve as a gatekeeper to ensure that benefits go toward those most in need, and they encourage people toward self-sufficiency. Work requirements provide a balanced approach to aiding those who need assistance while also being fair to taxpayers.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of government means-tested welfare programs don’t include a work requirement. Even the work requirements that do exist in a handful of programs, including the food stamp’s work requirement, need to be strengthened. Policymakers should look to the success of Maine and other states and move forward to promote work and self-sufficiency in the welfare system.


Australian students asked about their sexuality for scholarships

A leading education scholarship provider backed by some of Australia’s biggest businesses has begun quizzing high school students on their sexuality as part of its application process, sparking fresh concerns about the creeping influence of LGBTI rights activism on schools.

The Australian Business and Community Network Scholarship Foundation is inviting appli­cations for its 2016 grants program and, for the first time, is offering a grant targeted at Year 10 students who “identify as lesbian, gay, ­bisexual, trans and/or intersex”.

As a result, the application form inquires as to whether the candidate is male, female or transgender and whether they are gay, lesbian or bisexual. In past years, candidates were simply asked whether they were male or female.

The move means the program, chaired by prominent businessman Michael Hawker and fin­ancially backed by corporate heavyweights Microsoft, Optus and PricewaterhouseCoopers, strays from its original purpose of helping students from disadvantaged backgrounds with education-related costs.

The scholarships, each valued at $7000 over three years, are open to Year 10 students, who are typically 15 or 16.

The shift comes as the LGBTI lobby has become increasingly ­influential, including within schools, where programs such as the government-funded Safe Schools Coalition has sparked fears about young people being ­exposed to politically motivated ideologies around gender and sexuality.

Many of the ABCN’s board and council members head up organisations that have publicly backed the marriage equality push, such as Paul O’Sullivan of Optus, Microsoft boss Pip Marlow and Luke Sayers, who runs PwC in Australia.

PwC, which proudly declares ­itself as “one of the first private ­sector organisations to sign a letter of support for marriage equality in Australia”, courted controversy earlier this year when it released a report claiming that the cost of the planned plebiscite on same-sex marriage would exceed $500 million.

Damian Wyld, national policy officer for Family Voice Australia, criticised the awarding of education scholarships based on sexuality as another example of ideological activism making its way into schools.

“Why should children, especially in a school setting, be asked to declare their sexuality or gender identity?” Mr Wyld said yesterday.

“Many 15-year-olds are still working through issues around sexuality. Offering a financial ­incentive to identify as ‘lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and/or intersex’ is completely inappropriate.”

According to the latest National Survey of Australian Secondary Students and Sexual Health, ­released in 2014 and billed as the most comprehensive insight into the sexual behaviour and attitudes of young people, 23 per cent of Year 10 students reported engaging in sexual intercourse. “Surely merit or financial disadvantage are more appropriate criteria for scholarships,” Mr Wyld said.

According to the ABCN’s latest annual report, 15 scholarships were awarded last year, with $52,000 paid out to students. The foundation received more than $300,000 in donations last year, and more than $330,000 in 2014.

Launched in 2013, scholarships have traditionally been targeted at high-potential students from ­disadvantaged schools who were experiencing “significant economic, family or social challenges” that could impact on their education, particularly their ability to complete secondary school and graduate on to tertiary education. Grants must be spent on items that assist the student complete Years 11 and 12, such as books, stationary, computer equipment, tuition costs, uniform and transport.

For the first time, this year all applications are required to be submitted by school principals on behalf of applicants.

The scholarship foundation’s application guide says the group is offering a “targeted scholarship” for a student identifying as LGBTI “in addition” to its regular scholarships. It stresses that the grant recipient would not be identified without their consent.

The foundation, Microsoft, Optus and PwC did not respond to requests for comment.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


3 August, 2016

Multiculturalist is jailed for six months after throwing a dog to its death from the SEVENTH floor of a tower block

Mahmoud should have been thrown from the same window

A former security guard has been jailed after hurling a dog to its death from the seventh floor of a tower block.

Mahmood Keshavarzi, 37, dragged the dog from a garden up a tower block in Birmingham, West Midlands, where he then threw it out a window.

Keshavarzi was sentenced today to 26 weeks in prison for theft and criminal damage at Birmingham Magistrates Court.

He has also been ordered to pay £800 compensation to devastated owner Mitchel Jagger.

The court heard how father-of-four Mr Jagger desperately pleaded with Keshavarzi, who ignored his cries and tossed the dog to its death.

A teenager had seen Keshavarzi steal 15-month-old American bulldog cross Zeus from a garden and drag him by his collar towards the rear entrance of Drews House, in Druids Heath, Birmingham.

Simon Brownsey, prosecuting, told the court that the teenager called the police, but they were unable to find Zeus.

The witness told Mr Jagger, 29, of the theft when he returned home from work and he then set out desperately trying to find his beloved pet.

When he finally got to Keshavarzi's flat, he spotted dog hair on the mat outside.

Mr Brownsey said: 'Mr Jagger was banging on the door. He was asking for his dog back.  'It's at that point that he heard a commotion and was told Zeus had been found outside.'

The 13-year-old told the court that he had been outside and had heard Mr Jagger calling for Zeus and the dog barking.

He said: 'I heard a massive thump. It sounded like two cars going into each other. 'I looked on the ground and Zeus was lying there. I then heard the sound of a squeaking window.'

Mr Jagger was left devastated by the horrific death of his beloved family pet - and his children have been left traumatised.

He said: 'Zeus was a joint birthday present for me and my eldest daughter, Morgan, 11, when she turned nine.  'All the kids loved him, they absolutely doted on him - they were devastated when he died, and it hit Morgan especially hard.  'They know exactly what happened - luckily they were at their nan's when it happened so they weren't there to see it.

'I was banging on the door trying to get hold of the man - I had no idea who he was or why he would've taken my dog.  'But then I heard screaming from downstairs.  'My friend was with me, and I told him to go and check what was happening - and he shouted up and told me it was Zeus.

'I went mental - I just wanted revenge.  'I couldn't look at Zeus - I couldn't bear to look at him in that state.

'I was devastated - that dog was my best friend and I wasn't emotionally prepared for it.  'I was told it wasn't a pretty sight - he was crushed and bleeding.

'My partner Louise and the kids were absolutely hysterical, we just couldn't stop crying.  'It still affects all of us now, and when I think about it it chokes me up.

'I think justice has been done - but no sentence will be long enough, and also he wasn't done for animal cruelty.  'He was only done for theft and criminal damage - to me, killing my dog is murder.  'He wasn't property, he was a living thing.

He should be banned for keeping animals for life.  'He clearly has no regard for animal welfare at all.'


Despite America’s Unnerving Cultural Shift, Your Friends Are Not Unreachable

Your unchurched friends are not unreachable. How do I know? They’ve said so themselves.

We’ve all heard the statistics about the growth of the religiously unaffiliated in America—the sociologists call them the “nones”—those who don’t belong to any church or denomination. We’ve seen the effects of a secular worldview displacing America’s Judeo-Christian consensus, with the decline of religious liberty, respect for life, and marriage. On top of all this, some of the churches best known for doing evangelism are declining, with fewer and fewer of their members sharing the good news of Jesus. In our guts we can feel the cultural ground moving beneath our feet, and it’s unnerving.

It’s no wonder that evangelizing our unchurched neighbors can seem like a daunting task. More and more of them are downright hostile to the things of faith, right? Wrong!

That’s not my opinion—it’s straight from a new online survey of 2,000 unchurched Americans from LifeWay Research and the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism. The survey reports that nearly four in five of those who haven’t been to church in the last six months—except for weddings and funerals—say they don’t mind talking about faith if it’s really important to a friend. Not only that, but 47 percent say they will discuss religion freely if the subject comes up. Nearly another third say they’ll listen without responding. Remember, we’re only talking here about people who don’t go to church!

Unfortunately, even tragically, only a third say someone has actually bothered to explain why they should be a Christian. “Unchurched folks are not being overwhelmed by Christians talking about their faith,” says Scott McConnell, who’s the executive director of Lifeway Research. “If faith is important to you, then your friends will be interested in hearing about it.”

What else did the survey find? While only 35 percent say they would attend a worship service at a friend’s invitation, that’s still a big number. Also, 62 percent say they would attend a church meeting about neighborhood safety, 51 percent would participate in a community service event, 46 percent would take part in a sports or exercise program, 45 percent would go to a concert, 45 percent would show up for a neighborhood get-together, 25 percent would go to a recovery group, and 24 percent would go to a seminar on a spiritual topic … at a church. While we’d like for these interest numbers to be much higher, that’s still a lot to work with.

But we have to face the fact that most people are not sitting around waiting for our four-point gospel outlines. We’re going to have to be both creative and patient. According to the survey, a full 43 percent say they never wonder if they’ll get to heaven after they die; one in five can’t remember the last time they thought about it. On the plus side, however, 70 percent agree “there is an ultimate purpose and plan for every person’s life,” and 57 percent say that finding “their deeper purpose” is “a major priority.”

Friends, we’ve said this before, but if we really want our unchurched neighbors to receive Christ by faith—or even go to church with us—we’re going to have to get personal. Only about 20 percent say they would accept an invitation to attend a service from a church member at their door, a TV commercial, a postcard, or an ad on Facebook. But by contrast, 51 percent said that a personal invitation from a friend or family member might get them to go.

There’s a lot more statistical cud to chew on in this survey by Lifeway Research and the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism too.

Let us not forget the centrality of the Gospel in the life of the church, and in the life of your unchurched neighbors, whether they know it or not. As David Shibley says in his great new book on evangelism, Entrusted, “The screaming need in our day is to again make Jesus Christ and His gospel paramount.”

Amen to that!


Angry Feminists Conveniently Ignoring this Major Story

During the Clinton years, many feminists stayed silent while story after story trickled out about the sitting US president using his office to abuse and fondle women outside of the confines of his marriage. Now that another Clinton has a shot at the White House, they're choosing to ignore another major story: the leaking of nude photographs of Melania Trump. As the Daily Caller's Katie Frates notes:

The New York Post ran a front page cover Saturday night titled “The Ogle Office” featuring a naked spread of potential first lady Melania Trump.

She’s censored, but the article features three nude pictures of her in various poses from a 1995 photo shoot when she was 25. It’s first sentence is, “Donald Trump thinks his wife will be a model first lady — and here’s the proof.”

To its credit, the Trump campaign rolled with the spread, with senior adviser Jason Miller telling “Reliable Sources” that “they’re a celebration of the human body as art,” and “there’s nothing to be embarrassed about.” Additionally, the Post endorsed Donald Trump during the Republican primaries in April.

But none of the usual suspects are chiming in: Many feminists are staying quiet rather than defending Melania’s choice to pose nude — or attacking the Post’s choice to publish these photos just days after she and her family presented themselves to the country at the Republican National Convention.

Feminist hard-liners like Lena Dunham, Amy Schumer, Miley Cyrus and Planned Parenthood’s Cecile Richards have said nothing. Schumer frequently speaks out against body shaming and slut shaming; Dunham defends female sexuality and nudity through her show, “Girls;” Cyrus posts nakedpictures in defense of female nudity; and Richards has said, “I’m just honestly so sick of men telling us what to do with our bodies.” Even models like Emily Ratajkowski pose nude to make the point that it’s perfectly OK.


A Tale of Two Ships

The Navy has a long history of honoring great Americans by naming ships after them. Recently the Navy endowed this honor on retired Marine Col. Harvey Barnum, a Medal of Honor recipient. Barnum was one of only two MoH recipients to be denied a ceremony at the White House because of all the negativity surrounding the Vietnam War at the time. It's fitting that the USS Harvey C. Barnum Jr. be named in his honor, especially recognizing his acts of valor in serving our nation in the field of battle.

Conversely, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, continuing the Obama administration's homosexual constituency appeasement, announced another ship naming that is disgraceful. A John-Lewis class oiler will be named for Harvey Milk, a Korean War Navy vet and homosexual activist. Milk was murdered in 1978 in San Francisco, and became a martyr for the homosexual movement. In 2009, Barack Obama posthumously bestowed upon Milk the highest civilian award — the Presidential Medal of Freedom — and in 2014, had the USPS issue a postage stamp his honor. What Obama did not mention at either ceremony is that Milk was a predatory pedophile, and his relationship with young boys was documented by his homosexual biographer and close friend Randy Shilts, who died of AIDS in 1994.

Two ships. One named in honor a genuine heroic Patriot, and the other to honor a homosexual's activism. Obama, Hillary Clinton and their leftist cadres — none of whom have ever spent a day serving our country with honor, or in uniform — keep leaving their putrid stench wherever it will create the greatest offense.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


2 August, 2016

UK: Multicultural stomach specialist, 41, who groomed underage schoolgirls online and told them 'Trust me I'm a doctor' is struck off

An NHS specialist who tried to arrange sex with a '13-year-old girl' after a string of vile explicit messages offering to take her virginity has been struck off.

Dr Khaled Zachariah, 41, used social media usernames TummyDoctor and Medic69 as he trawled social media to find young victims on MSN and World's Biggest Chat.

He talked of 'slow love making' and asked one girl to meet him in a luxury hotel, telling her: 'It is a turn on to teach you everything; Trust me, I'm a doctor,' a medical tribunal heard.

After meeting her online, he changed his name from TummyDoctor to the more salacious Medic69 - the number part being a reference to a sexual position - when they started talking privately.

The doctor, who has a 12-year-old son and a younger daughter, started the conversation by saying: 'I usually don't chat up underage girls. So you are 13?'

But the reply actually came from officers from Greater Manchester Police, who had created the fake profile after they came across his suspicious TummyDoctor account while investigating grooming.

When the officers replied 'yes', the medic used vile language to try and seduce him, using the kind of words and spellings that a teenager might use.  He wrote: 'I am a doctor, I won't try to seduce you but if you are ready then I might. You prob still a virgin. You are a good girl. Good is neva bad, being bad is sometimes good.'

The doctor asked her to confirm she was 13 and when she did, he replied: 'I've never played with a 13-year-old'. When asked what he meant, he said: 'f****d'.

He offered to teach her how to 'pleasure a man' and to buy her boots so that she could wear them for him at a hotel in Manchester where he promised to book a room.

Zachariah joked about being three times her age, telling her about Jeremy Forrest, who eloped to France with a 15-year-old girl in order to justify his sick fantasy.  He said: 'I am three times your age lol. Society makes it illegal but nature takes its course.

'I won't joke about this to anyone. I could go to jail. You seen what that teacher done with the 15 yr old and took her to France. And where is he now.'

Zachariah claimed that he never intended to meet the girl, posting as 'Sweetsam13', and simply wanted to live out his fantasies online, which he would never act on.

The hearing heard that the conversations got shorter and Zachariah said he would not be able to meet up due to bad weather.

He told officers posing as the girl: 'We won't be able to be together properly for another three years, I need to make sure we stay solid.'

Another post read: 'You are single cute and inexperienced. I would love to get you on the right path, the one that leads to my bed. 'Your first time is better with an expert. It would be fun smuggling you into that room.'

When the undercover officers tried to contact the doctor again he did not respond and he was arrested in June 2013.

The hearing was told Zachariah was bailed but no charges were brought and bosses at Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Trust were alerted.

Zachariah admitted carrying out the sordid online chats but denied misconduct at a medical tribunal, claiming it was all a fantasy and knew he was not talking to a young girl.

But those claims were thrown out by a tribunal panel who convicted him of misconduct and ordered that he be struck off as a doctor.

Medical Practioners Tribunal Service panel chair Peter Scofield said Zachariah abused his position of trust as a doctor, who worked at Gloucester Royal Hospital as a registrar in Gastroenterology.

He said: 'Sexual misconduct seriously undermines public trust in the profession. The misconduct is particularly serious where there is an abuse of the special position of trust a doctor occupies.

'You abused your position as a doctor and you put your own interests before that of a person you believed to be a child.   'There is an expectation that doctors act with the highest integrity not only in the workplace but also in their private lives.  'Your misconduct is so serious that your interests are outweighed by the public interest in this regard.

'The Tribunal concluded that erasure is the only means of protecting the public, maintaining public confidence in the profession and declaring and upholding proper standards of conduct.  'It therefore directs that your name be erased from the Medical Register.'


How to Defeat Terrorism

I admit at the outset that my title is partially misleading. Terrorism cannot be defeated, it can only be significantly reduced if the right measures are adopted. We are engaged in a war without end, a war that has gone on for fourteen centuries, a war that cannot be decisively won—but it is a war that we need not lose. We can limit the enemy’s ability to strike, keep him on the defensive, degrade his arsenal and confine him as far as possible to the peripheries of our world.

The necessary measures are not difficult to discern, but unlikely to be applied so long as our leaders are either weak or suborned, the media circulate their usual obfuscations, the academy persists in its ideological corruption, the talking heads keep talking before repairing to the security of their gated communities and tony neighborhoods, and the general populace remains mired in its habitual lassitude and fear of sounding politically incorrect.

The measures and policies that would need to be put in place are so obvious that the failure to implement them is nothing but a sign of lethal complacency and moral cowardice. What are these measures? The list is not unduly long and, as I say, entirely obvious.

Islamic immigration must be drastically curtailed if not completely stopped. As Donald Trump has cogently warned, “We are allowing people into our country who we have no idea where they are, where they're from, who they are, they have no paperwork, they have no documentation, in many cases.” This, as the proverb goes, is like closing the barn door after the horse has escaped. But there are many more horses in the barn to be confined to their stalls. It’s a start.

Since large Muslim populations are already settled within our borders, surveillance must be intensive, methodical and ongoing. No-Go Zones must be pacified by whatever means, and must be made Go Zones. Self-regulated ghettoes have to be opened up and rigorously policed. Islamic law must be ruled in contravention of common law and legally prohibited. Vigorous action is required.

As Andrew Bieszad, one of Walid Shoebat’s co-bloggers, reported at com, the mayor of Calais has now decided to act, to dismantle the so-called refugee “jungle” that has disfigured the town and to displace or deport thousands of its characteristically violent denizens. As Bieszad says, “It has taken a long time, but the French are finally pushing back against the Muslims in Calais.” But nowhere else, it appears.

All mosques, which are effectively command centers, must be stringently investigated and many must be closed down.
Every imam in the country should be thoroughly vetted and many should be de-licensed and restricted from preaching.

Jihadi suspects clearly and unequivocally known to law enforcement agencies should not be so readily allowed, as is far too often the case, to mix freely among the people. As has often been said, lone wolves are usually known wolves. Moreover, it is a mistake to consider them as “lone”; they are really part of a vast ideological pack.

Of course, we would need to protect ourselves against abuse of authority where anyone in disfavor with policing agencies or political administrations can be randomly detained. Wolves may be responsibly “tagged,” so to speak, and monitored, whether digitally or in propia persona, by the intelligence community, with a reasonable prospect of interception before yet another outrage is committed—those like the Nice jihadist Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, who, as The Washington Post reports, “had been connected to assault and theft since 2010” and sentenced to a six month prison term (though “[i]t was not clear whether Bouhlel served any of that sentence”).

Admittedly, there is a fine line between liberty and security, the issue will always remain moot, and safeguards will have to be agreed upon even if we lose some battles along the way.

Muslims and non-Muslims who leave the country to fight alongside terrorist entities must not be repatriated, even if they are passport-holding citizens. They are accessories to those who would destroy us and are therefore enemy combatants.

Muslim organizations with ties to terror-sponsoring organizations or that lobby for Sharia or for cultural and political influence must be disbanded and outlawed, no matter how powerful and widespread.

No less important, indeed, perhaps the most crucial of the measures I am proposing, has to do with terminology and the concepts it signifies. We keep hearing that the enemy we are facing is “Islamic extremism” or “radical Islam.” Nothing can be further from the truth. This is the most serious in its consequences of the evasions we practice and one that ensures our eventual destruction. The enemy is not radical Islam but Islam pure and simple. The terrorists, their enablers and the “entry” cohort take their warrant from their holy scriptures—the Koran, the Hadith, the Sira, the schools of jurisprudence, and centuries of political and religious commentary.

As Jeff Sanders writes in an article for PJ Media, “The ‘holy war’ in the Bible is limited to only one set of passages in the Old Testament… [and to a particular] piece of geography and that particular time period….God did not ever tell the Israelites to go conquer and take the land of the Egyptians or the Syrians or the Greeks or the Babylonians or anyone else. And they didn't.…However, the commands in the Quran to make war on all unbelievers have no ‘sunset clause.’ All of these commands are open-ended. They are not limited in any way to any geographical boundaries or to a time period. They are for all faithful Muslims for all time.”

As for the smattering of peaceful and tolerant passages, “the Quran also teaches something called the ‘law of abrogation,’ [in which] a later revelation, if it contradicts an earlier one, must be obeyed (Surah 2:106)…So, those few peaceful and tolerant passages in the Quran [are] replaced with other, newer commands, [which are] not so peaceful and tolerant.” Few “experts,” commentators, intellectuals and lay people are ready to endorse so unpalatable a truth. It is far easier for them to accept the conventional pieties, to regard themselves as correct-thinking and enlightened beings, and to redefine pusillanimity as courage.

In summation, until we recognize that Islam itself—not only its presumably “radical” variants—is incompatible with pluralistic Western democracies, we will not be able to save our countries.

Pushback is unlikely for some time yet, if ever. Notwithstanding, peaceful Muslims must be pressured by informed opinion to undertake a thoroughgoing transformation of their faith even if the result has little affinity with millennial orthodoxy. The liberal argument that, in so doing, we will drive the moderates into the arms of the radicals is a reductio ad absurdum and, as Milo Yiannopoulos pointed out in an interview with a typical mealy-mouthed British journalist, is actually a threat.

Must we keep assuring these putative moderates that Islam is demonstrably a religion of peace in order to keep them moderate? “Be nice to us or we’ll kill more of you,” as Yiannopoulos puts it. Must we refrain from fighting an implacable foe at the risk of finding ever more of them? Is this how we respond to Christians, Jews, Hindus and Sikhs? Such an argument is patently a confession of defeat and guarantees yet more of the same.

Should the measures I and others are recommending be instituted, Islam will not go away, and innocent people will still die in terrorist attacks or find their everyday lives to some extent imperiled by Islamic social and cultural incursions, although to a much diminished degree.

Nevertheless, there is no other resolution to our dilemma, failing which the sequel is eminently predictable: the grizzly march of terrorist atrocities like those we have seen since 9/11 (and before) up to the latest carnage in Nice, dramatic Muslim inroads into the culture, eventual civil conflict and armed skirmishes on the streets of our cities, the rise of fascist parties profiting from the general malaise, and the inevitable disintegration of a way of life that we have ignorantly taken for granted.

“There needs to be an admission that we are in a full-scale war—not just lip-service," Robert Spencer writes, “but a genuine acknowledgment, followed by a genuine war footing, and an end to the weepy memorials, empty condemnations, and po-faced get-nowhere investigations. This is not crime. This is war.”

We are now at the inflexion point. Either we are prepared to continue being slaughtered like sheep and to lose our ancestral traditions of rights and freedoms, or we are determined to preserve our Judeo-Christian heritage and the best the West has to offer.


Pentagon’s Transgender Policy Defies Common Sense

On Thursday, Secretary of Defense Ash Carter announced that the U.S. military is dropping its policy of treating male and female troops according to their biology—to be replaced by a policy based on a radical new gender ideology.

This change was not precipitated by military needs but by political correctness. After all, the military is not stretched so thin that it must make special accommodations to help attract the estimated 0.6 percent of Americans who self-identify as transgender in order to effectively fight and win our wars.

Moreover, people with gender dysphoria are allowed to serve, and many have served honorably, so long as their condition or treatments do not interfere with combat readiness.

What the military did not allow before today was the disruption to morale, privacy, and readiness that results from a male serviceman demanding the “right” to dress as a female, have others address him as a female, and be granted unfettered access to showers, lockers, bathrooms, and barracks designated for females. That commonsense policy, which has served our country well, was jettisoned today.

In grappling with this issue it helps to ask why the military has separate shower facilities and barracks for women and men in the first place. As with the question of women in combat, if the answer has something to do with biological realities, privacy, and interactions between the sexes, then the implications for morale and readiness are fairly evident.

But the new gender ideology ignores these facts and replaces them with subjective self-identification, so that a person’s sex is merely an arbitrary designation “assigned at birth” and one can actually be “male, female, neither, or a combination of male and female,” at least according to new mandates from the Obama administration.

Some obvious questions arise from the new policy. Will biological males who identify as female be subject to physical fitness requirements for men or women? Will they be required to do 35 pushups or 13 pushups to pass basic training? Will American taxpayers be required to pay for expensive “sex reassignment” surgeries, including breast implants in men and shaving down Adam’s apples when that money can be spent on better weapons or more training?

Will service members who have addressed an officer as “sir” for years be booted out of the military if they refuse to address him as “ma’am?” Wouldn’t the loss and impact on recruiting offset any supposed gains of allowing a relatively few transgender troops the ability to dress according to their chosen identity? These are but a few questions Carter neglected to address in his announcement.

Instead, Carter said that:

Embedded within our Constitution is th[e] very principle that all Americans are free and equal. And we as an Army are sworn to protect and defend that very principle. And we are sworn to even die for that principle. So if we in uniform are willing to die for that principle then we in uniform should be willing to live by that principle.

This is too much.

First, it doesn’t violate equality to recognize relevant biological realities and there is nothing in the text, structure, or history of the Constitution that elevates transgender people to a protected class akin to race.

Second, whatever one thinks of the latest Supreme Court redefinition of marriage, it did not redefine what it means to be a man and a woman for all Americans, especially in the military context.

There are painstakingly detailed regulations concerning uniforms, grooming, and even tattoo placement because troops must be trained to put the mission above self-expression, as lives depend upon it. Regulations that recognize relevant biological realities help, not hinder, the mission, and as admitted by Carter in his statement, thousands of people with gender dysphoria were already allowed to serve over the years because they respected the old policies.

Finally, there are hundreds of thousands of veterans and current troops who were traumatized, wounded, or died fighting against Nazis, Communist aggressors, and terrorists, yet, believe that biological men should not be allowed into the same barracks and showers as women.

Carter dishonors their sacrifices by suggesting that these Americans who actually died for the Constitution failed to live by the Constitution themselves. This decision has nothing to do with the Constitution and everything to do with politics and a gender ideology run amok.


New media gives voice to the oldest hatred

Anti-Semitism has become a poisonously routine part of online life as memories of the Holocaust fade

Stephen Pollard

Not so long ago, the likes of John Nimmo would be living in well-deserved obscurity. Nimmo is a misogynist racist who has a penchant for sending threatening messages to women. Before the internet and the advent of social media, he would doubtless have festered alone in his South Shields bedroom and his hate would have been shared only with whichever other losers he happened to speak to.

But in our digital age, Nimmo can make contact with pretty much anyone at the touch of a button.

Two years ago he did exactly that to Stella Creasy, the Labour MP, and Caroline Criado-Perez, the feminist campaigner, sending them abusive tweets and getting an eight-week prison sentence for doing so.

Now he is at it again, this time sending anti-Semitic death threats to Luciana Berger, the Liverpool Labour MP. She would, he told her, “get it like Jo Cox”. He warned her: “Watch your back Jewish scum, regards your friend the Nazi”, along with a picture of a large knife.

Ms Berger told the court where Nimmo is being tried that his words caused her “great fear and anguish”. She said the tweets left her in a state of “huge distress” and “caused me to feel physically sick being threatened in such a way”.

I imagine that you are shocked to read about such behaviour. No decent person could fail to be. But Ms Berger won’t have been. I certainly wasn’t. Nor will any prominent Jew. Not because the behaviour is in any way acceptable. Rather, because it is so run-of-the-mill.

Ms Berger receives anti-Semitic abuse every day. In spades. Indeed, you will not find a single prominent Jew with a Twitter or Facebook account who does not regularly receive anti-Semitic abuse.

When I wake up and check my Twitter feed it rarely contains fewer than 10 anti-Semitic messages. More often than not it’s far more. Another 20 or so come during an average day. And that’s after I have blocked more than 300 different tweeters – a number that increases every day.

Some even amuse me, such as the recent claim that I “lead British Zionists with their propaganda to enable them to control UK”. Another tweet informed the world: “Pollard is the chief protagonist of Zionist supremacism in UK. He controls MSM.”

MSM is an acronym for mainstream media – which means I apparently control all British media. Which would be really useful, if it were true. Sadly, I can’t even control my own kids.

Some comments are threatening. One notorious anti-Semite that I had previously blocked started informing her followers that I was in the habit of ringing her voicemail and had left abusive messages threatening to rape her. She also posted a tweet suggesting that someone “pop” me off.

In my experience, the police have been entirely useless. Last year I had to explain what Twitter was to two PCs from the Met who had been sent to talk to me about a threat I had reported. Though they had heard of it, they had no real idea what it was.

This is an epidemic of hate. And with the odd exception, such as the clear death threat to Ms Berger, nothing is done about it. Certainly not by Twitter. I have given up reporting the culprits, since not once has Twitter taken any action against them. Free speech, innit?

But one thing puzzles me. Have the likes of Nimmo always been with us, and has social media simply given them a tool and a voice they didn’t have before? Or has social media itself raised the temperature and caused much of the epidemic?

For most of my 51 years, anti-Semitism was something I encountered only fitfully; the odd unthinking throwaway remark or “joke”. Certainly nothing that would give me pause for thought.

But the past few years have been different. I have not gone a day without encountering it. As a journalist, I have reported the spate of such comments from Labour members with astonishment that anti-Semitism can have entered the language of a mainstream party, however marginally.

My hunch is that it has always been there, but we simply did not hear it.

In the years after the Second World War, no one voiced anti-Semitism, even if it lay buried deep within their psyche. Even Jewish jokes were rarely told in polite company. But as memories faded and the Holocaust grew further away, social wariness of Jew-hate dissipated.

History then reasserted itself. It’s not called the longest hatred for nothing. And the kind of anti-Semitism that once remained private, behind closed doors, now has the megaphone of social media. And that, we surely know, is not going anywhere.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


1 August, 2016

Multicultural heart surgeon, 53, 'raped a woman and sexually assaulted at least three others in a series of attacks over 13 years'

One of Britain's top heart surgeons is accused of raping a woman and sexually assaulting at least three others in a series of attacks over 13 years, a court has heard.

Harley Street surgeon Mohamed Amrani, 53, appeared at Hammersmith Magistrates Court on Wednesday charged with 11 offences, including one count of rape, dating back to 2001, with the most recent taking place in May 2014.

The NHS and private healthcare consultant is accused of one charge of rape, two charge of assault by penetration, six charges of indecent assault and two charges of sexual assault, all on women over 16.

The cardiac surgeon works at the Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Trust, which is the largest heart and lungs specialist centre in the UK, and based across two sites in central London and Hillingdon, west London.

According to his online profile for the trust, Amrani, who is also registered at the Cardio Vascular Health Clinic on Harley Street, performed the UK's first double valve replacement through a small incision.

He was also part of the team which conducted the first double lung transplant from a non-heart beating donor.

He also works at The BUPA Cromwell Hospital, in South Kensington, where one of the alleged sexual assaults took place.

Court documents revealed there are at least four victims, and all but one of the offences took place at Harefield Hospital in the London borough of Hillingdon.

Moroccan-born Amrani, who is also a senior lecturer in surgery, appeared in the dock wearing glasses, a grey suit with a pink shirt and purple tie, speaking only to confirm his name, date of birth and address.

Amrani, who lives in a £1.7million mansion in Harrow, London, was granted conditional bailed to his home address.

A spokesman for the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Foundation Trust said: 'We are aware that these charges have been brought but this is now a police matter and it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time.

'The General Medical Council has suspended Mr Amrani's licence to practice and he is therefore currently excluded from working at the trust.'

A spokesman for the Cromwell Hospital said: 'We suspended Mr Amrani the moment the police alerted us about their investigation.'


Cognitive ability varies, but prejudice is universal

When it comes to prejudice, it does not matter if you are smart or not, or conservative or liberal, each group has their own specific biases. In a recent study, psychologists show that low cognitive ability (i.e., intelligence, verbal ability) was not a consistent predictor of prejudice. Cognitive ability, whether high or low, only predicts prejudice towards specific groups. The results are published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.

"Very few people are immune to expressing prejudice, especially prejudice towards people they disagree with," says lead author Mark Brandt (Tilburg University, Netherlands).

Brandt and Jarrett Crawford (The College of New Jersey) analyzed data from 5914 people in the United States that includes a measure of verbal ability and prejudice towards 24 different groups.

Analyzing the results, the researchers found that people with both relatively higher and lower levels of cognitive ability show approximately equal levels of intergroup bias, but towards different sets of groups. People with low cognitive ability tended to express prejudice towards groups perceived as liberal and unconventional (e.g., atheists, gays and lesbians), as well as groups of people perceived as having low choice over group membership (e.g., ethnic minorities). People with high cognitive ability showed the reverse pattern. They tended to express prejudice towards groups perceived as conservative and conventional (e.g., Christians, the military, big business).

"There are a variety of belief systems and personality traits that people often think protect them from expressing prejudice," says Brandt. "In our prior work we found that people high and low in the personality trait of openness to experience show very consistent links between seeing a group as 'different from us' and expressing prejudice towards that group. The same appears to be true for cognitive ability. "

"Whereas prior work by others found that people with low cognitive ability express more prejudice, we found that this is limited to only some target groups," says Brandt. "For other target groups the relationship was in the opposite direction. For these groups, people with high levels of cognitive ability expressed more prejudice. So, cognitive ability also does not seem to make people immune to expressing prejudice."

The authors would like to see if their findings will replicate in new samples, with new target groups, and additional measures of cognitive ability.

"We used a measure of verbal ability, which is essentially a vocabulary test," says Brandt. "Although this measure correlates pretty well with other measures of cognitive ability it is not a perfect nor a complete measure."


'They shot my son!' ISIS priest-killer's mother wails in the street and insists he was 'not a monster'

She's half right.  She did not give birth to a monster.  It was Islam that made him a monster

The mother of a terrorist Abdel Malik Petitjean reacted with fury today screaming, 'They shot my son, they shot my son' as she struggled to accept his death.

Yamina Petitjean was seen for the first time outside her home since marksmen shot dead her son Abdel Malik.

The 45-year-old wailed: 'I have so much grief. I can't believe what is happening. Why did this happen.'

She spoke as she tried to calm a mob of youths who had gathered on the council estate in the town of Aix Les Bains and had threatened the media.

Petitjean spoke as she emerged from her council flat where he son lived and had planned his terror atrocity.

As she broke down in tears a friend comforted her and led her back to her fifth floor flat.

Friends have said she is in denial about the death of her 19-year-old son.  


Political Correctness is Hurting U.S. National Security

Constitutional lawyer and Iraq War veteran David French said on Wednesday that political correctness is hurting the nation's national security far more than constitutional protections for civil liberties.

“I do think that what does hurt American national security is political correctness,” French told CNSNews.com.  It’s a view of the world not as it is but a view of the world as we want it to be.”

“I think the Constitution strikes the right balance between civil liberties and law enforcement, between liberty and security. I think that what’s hampered us more is political correctness,” French explained.

“We want to believe things that are not true because it makes the world a happier place,” he said.

French does not see the “robust constitutional protections” provided by the Fourth Amendment” as hurting national security. Instead, he told CNSNews.com,  “You can do excellent policing while respecting civil liberty.”

He emphasized that in order to defeat ISIS  both at home and abroad, it is vital to know the enemy.

“We have to understand who the enemy is, where the enemy is coming from, and what the enemy believes, and utilize that knowledge to target the appropriate people for investigation,” he said.  “And I think we could defend our nation on that basis.”

However, even though French warned about the dangers of political correctness and the importance of knowing the enemy, he does not believe that the phrase “radical Islam” is necessarily a useful phrase in combating terrorism.

“Saying ‘radical Islam’ is not a military strategy,” he claimed during a lecture entitled “Fact and Fiction in Fighting ISIS” on Wednesday at the Rayburn House Office Building.

During that lecture, he further explained that the tactics employed against terrorism are far more meaningful than the words used to describe it. In some parts of the Muslim world, he pointed out, terror in the name of Islam is not even a radical thought.

Moreover, he noted that using this phrase might impede the progress of building Arab coalitions to fight terror in the Middle East.

In the interview with CNSNews.com, French also discussed the role of the Second Amendment in relation to domestic terrorism.

“The notion that gun control is an answer to Jihad…would be laugh out loud funny if it weren’t so pitiful,” he said.

Pointing to recent terror attacks in Europe, French explained, “you had more than 100 people killed in a combination of truck attacks, knife attacks, axe attacks, bombings and shootings, with the truck being the most dangerous of all of those things.”

He also referred to the 9/11 terror attacks, saying, “if you look at American casualties to terrorism here domestically, the deadliest weapon so far is a box cutter combined with an airplane.”

“Jihadists can and will find and use whatever weapon they can find and use to kill Americans, to kill Europeans,” he clarified.

However, French does think the Second Amendment can be a “means for us to defend ourselves from jihadists.”

He claimed that if a jihadist was attacking a crowd of people, 99 percent of them “would rather have a chance to confront him.”

“It’s that simple: it’s pure self-defense, which is a constitutional right, it’s a natural right, it’s a human right,” he concluded.

In the lecture earlier in the day, French explained that a comprehensive and lasting strategy is needed in order to defeat ISIS and create stability in the Middle East.

He warned against what he called “terrorist whack-a-mole,” where the United States takes down individual terrorists or groups, only for others to rise up in their place.

According to French, all this does is anger the enemy without creating any lasting strategic effect.

However, he pointed out that even ISIS terrorists have a breaking point and that at a certain point, they will lose hope. They carry out jihad thinking that Allah will lead them to victory, and to defeat them, the U.S. military has to inflict enough damage to convince them that they cannot win,” he said.

French ended the lecture by saying that to defeat ISIS, the United States needs a “permanent,” “aggressive,” and “flexible” strategy of “self-defense.”



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here



HOME (Index page)

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(Isaiah 62:1)

A 19th century Democrat political poster below:

Leftist tolerance


JFK knew Leftist dogmatism

The most beautiful woman in the world? I think she was. Yes: It's Agnetha Fältskog

A beautiful baby is king -- with blue eyes, blond hair and white skin. How incorrect can you get?

Kristina Pimenova, said to be the most beautiful girl in the world. Note blue eyes and blonde hair

Enough said

There really is an actress named Donna Air. She seems a pleasant enough woman, though

What feminism has wrought:

There's actually some wisdom there. The dreamy lady says she is holding out for someone who meets her standards. The other lady reasonably replies "There's nobody there". Standards can be unrealistically high and feminists have laboured mightily to make them so

Political correctness is Fascism pretending to be manners

Political Correctness is as big a threat to free speech as Communism and Fascism. All 3 were/are socialist.

The problem with minorities is not race but culture. For instance, many American black males fit in well with the majority culture. They go to college, work legally for their living, marry and support the mother of their children, go to church, abstain from crime and are considerate towards others. Who could reasonably object to such people? It is people who subscribe to minority cultures -- black, Latino or Muslim -- who can give rise to concern. If antisocial attitudes and/or behaviour become pervasive among a group, however, policies may reasonably devised to deal with that group as a whole

Black lives DON'T matter -- to other blacks. The leading cause of death among young black males is attack by other young black males

Psychological defence mechanisms such as projection play a large part in Leftist thinking and discourse. So their frantic search for evil in the words and deeds of others is easily understandable. The evil is in themselves. Leftist motivations are fundamentally Fascist. They want to "fundamentally transform" the lives of their fellow citizens, which is as authoritarian as you can get. We saw where it led in Russia and China. The "compassion" that Leftists parade is just a cloak for their ghastly real motivations

Occasionally I put up on this blog complaints about the privileged position of homosexuals in today's world. I look forward to the day when the pendulum swings back and homosexuals are treated as equals before the law. To a simple Leftist mind, that makes me "homophobic", even though I have no fear of any kind of homosexuals.

But I thought it might be useful for me to point out a few things. For a start, I am not unwise enough to say that some of my best friends are homosexual. None are, in fact. Though there are two homosexuals in my normal social circle whom I get on well with and whom I think well of.

Of possible relevance: My late sister was a homosexual; I loved Liberace's sense of humour and I thought that Robert Helpmann was marvellous as Don Quixote in the Nureyev ballet of that name.

I record on this blog many examples of negligent, inefficient and reprehensible behaviour on the part of British police. After 13 years of Labour party rule they have become highly politicized, with values that reflect the demands made on them by the political Left rather than than what the community expects of them. They have become lazy and cowardly and avoid dealing with real crime wherever possible -- preferring instead to harass normal decent people for minor infractions -- particularly offences against political correctness. They are an excellent example of the destruction that can be brought about by Leftist meddling.

I also record on this blog much social worker evil -- particularly British social worker evil. The evil is neither negligent nor random. It follows exactly the pattern you would expect from the Marxist-oriented indoctrination they get in social work school -- where the middle class is seen as the enemy and the underclass is seen as virtuous. So social workers are lightning fast to take children away from normal decent parents on the basis of of minor or imaginary infractions while turning a blind eye to gross child abuse by the underclass

Racial differences in temperament: Chinese are more passive even as little babies

The genetics of crime: I have been pointing out for some time the evidence that there is a substantial genetic element in criminality. Some people are born bad. See here, here, here, here (DOI: 10.1111/jcpp.12581) and here, for instance"

Gender is a property of words, not of people. Using it otherwise is just another politically correct distortion -- though not as pernicious as calling racial discrimination "Affirmative action"

Postmodernism is fundamentally frivolous. Postmodernists routinely condemn racism and intolerance as wrong but then say that there is no such thing as right and wrong. They are clearly not being serious. Either they do not really believe in moral nihilism or they believe that racism cannot be condemned!

Postmodernism is in fact just a tantrum. Post-Soviet reality in particular suits Leftists so badly that their response is to deny that reality exists. That they can be so dishonest, however, simply shows how psychopathic they are.

So why do Leftists say "There is no such thing as right and wrong" when backed into a rhetorical corner? They say it because that is the predominant conclusion of analytic philosophers. And, as Keynes said: "Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back”

Children are the best thing in life. See also here.

Juergen Habermas, a veteran leftist German philosopher stunned his admirers not long ago by proclaiming, "Christianity, and nothing else, is the ultimate foundation of liberty, conscience, human rights, and democracy, the benchmarks of Western civilization. To this day, we have no other options [than Christianity]. We continue to nourish ourselves from this source. Everything else is postmodern chatter."

Consider two "jokes" below:

Q. "Why are Leftists always standing up for blacks and homosexuals?

A. Because for all three groups their only God is their penis"

Pretty offensive, right? So consider this one:

Q. "Why are evangelical Christians like the Taliban?

A. They are both religious fundamentalists"

The latter "joke" is not a joke at all, of course. It is a comparison routinely touted by Leftists. Both "jokes" are greatly offensive and unfair to the parties targeted but one gets a pass without question while the other would bring great wrath on the head of anyone uttering it. Why? Because political correctness is in fact just Leftist bigotry. Bigotry is unfairly favouring one or more groups of people over others -- usually justified as "truth".

One of my more amusing memories is from the time when the Soviet Union still existed and I was teaching sociology in a major Australian university. On one memorable occasion, we had a representative of the Soviet Womens' organization visit us -- a stout and heavily made-up lady of mature years. When she was ushered into our conference room, she was greeted with something like adulation by the local Marxists. In question time after her talk, however, someone asked her how homosexuals were treated in the USSR. She replied: "We don't have any. That was before the revolution". The consternation and confusion that produced among my Leftist colleagues was hilarious to behold and still lives vividly in my memory. The more things change, the more they remain the same, however. In Sept. 2007 President Ahmadinejad told Columbia university that there are no homosexuals in Iran.

It is widely agreed (with mainly Lesbians dissenting) that boys need their fathers. What needs much wider recognition is that girls need their fathers too. The relationship between a "Daddy's girl" and her father is perhaps the most beautiful human relationship there is. It can help give the girl concerned inner strength for the rest of her life.

A modern feminist complains: "We are so far from “having it all” that “we barely even have a slice of the pie, which we probably baked ourselves while sobbing into the pastry at 4am”."

Patriotism does NOT in general go with hostilty towards others. See e.g. here and here and even here ("Ethnocentrism and Xenophobia: A Cross-Cultural Study" by anthropologist Elizabeth Cashdan. In Current Anthropology Vol. 42, No. 5, December 2001).

The love of bureaucracy is very Leftist and hence "correct". Who said this? "Account must be taken of every single article, every pound of grain, because what socialism implies above all is keeping account of everything". It was V.I. Lenin

"An objection I hear frequently is: ‘Why should we tolerate intolerance?’ The assumption is that tolerating views that you don’t agree with is like a gift, an act of kindness. It suggests we’re doing people a favour by tolerating their view. My argument is that tolerance is vital to us, to you and I, because it’s actually the presupposition of all our freedoms. You cannot be free in any meaningful sense unless there is a recognition that we are free to act on our beliefs, we’re free to think what we want and express ourselves freely. Unless we have that freedom, all those other freedoms that we have on paper mean nothing" -- SOURCE


Although it is a popular traditional chant, the "Kol Nidre" should be abandoned by modern Jewish congregations. It was totally understandable where it originated in the Middle Ages but is morally obnoxious in the modern world and vivid "proof" of all sorts of antisemitic stereotypes

What the Bible says about homosexuality:

"Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind; It is abomination" -- Lev. 18:22

In his great diatribe against the pagan Romans, the apostle Paul included homosexuality among their sins:

"For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature. And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.... Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them" -- Romans 1:26,27,32.

So churches that condone homosexuality are clearly post-Christian

Although I am an atheist, I have great respect for the wisdom of ancient times as collected in the Bible. And its condemnation of homosexuality makes considerable sense to me. In an era when family values are under constant assault, such a return to the basics could be helpful. Nonetheless, I approve of St. Paul's advice in the second chapter of his epistle to the Romans that it is for God to punish them, not us. In secular terms, homosexuality between consenting adults in private should not be penalized but nor should it be promoted or praised. In Christian terms, "Gay pride" is of the Devil

The homosexuals of Gibeah (Judges 19 & 20) set in train a series of events which brought down great wrath and destruction on their tribe. The tribe of Benjamin was almost wiped out when it would not disown its homosexuals. Are we seeing a related process in the woes presently being experienced by the amoral Western world? Note that there was one Western country that was not affected by the global financial crisis and subsequently had no debt problems: Australia. In September 2012 the Australian federal parliament considered a bill to implement homosexual marriage. It was rejected by a large majority -- including members from both major political parties

Religion is deeply human. The recent discoveries at Gobekli Tepe suggest that it was religion not farming that gave birth to civilization. Early civilizations were at any rate all very religious. Atheism is mainly a very modern development and is even now very much a minority opinion

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" - Isaiah 5:20 (KJV)

I think it's not unreasonable to see Islam as the religion of the Devil. Any religion that loves death or leads to parents rejoicing when their children blow themselves up is surely of the Devil -- however you conceive of the Devil. Whether he is a man in a red suit with horns and a tail, a fallen spirit being, or simply the evil side of human nature hardly matters. In all cases Islam is clearly anti-life and only the Devil or his disciples could rejoice in that.

And there surely could be few lower forms of human behaviour than to give abuse and harm in return for help. The compassionate practices of countries with Christian traditions have led many such countries to give a new home to Muslim refugees and seekers after a better life. It's basic humanity that such kindness should attract gratitude and appreciation. But do Muslims appreciate it? They most commonly show contempt for the countries and societies concerned. That's another sign of Satanic influence.

And how's this for demonic thinking?: "Asian father whose daughter drowned in Dubai sea 'stopped lifeguards from saving her because he didn't want her touched and dishonoured by strange men'

And where Muslims tell us that they love death, the great Christian celebration is of the birth of a baby -- the monogenes theos (only begotten god) as John 1:18 describes it in the original Greek -- Christmas!

No wonder so many Muslims are hostile and angry. They have little companionship from women and not even any companionship from dogs -- which are emotionally important in most other cultures. Dogs are "unclean"

Some advice from Martin Luther: Esto peccator et pecca fortiter, sed fortius fide et gaude in christo qui victor est peccati, mortis et mundi: peccandum est quam diu sic sumus. Vita haec non est habitatio justitiae

On all my blogs, I express my view of what is important primarily by the readings that I select for posting. I do however on occasions add personal comments in italicized form at the beginning of an article.

I am rather pleased to report that I am a lifelong conservative. Out of intellectual curiosity, I did in my youth join organizations from right across the political spectrum so I am certainly not closed-minded and am very familiar with the full spectrum of political thinking. Nonetheless, I did not have to undergo the lurch from Left to Right that so many people undergo. At age 13 I used my pocket-money to subscribe to the "Reader's Digest" -- the main conservative organ available in small town Australia of the 1950s. I have learnt much since but am pleased and amused to note that history has since confirmed most of what I thought at that early age.

I imagine that the the RD is still sending mailouts to my 1950s address!

Germaine Greer is a stupid old Harpy who is notable only for the depth and extent of her hatreds

Even Mahatma Gandhi was profoundly unimpressed by Africans

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