Late night pish posh…

It’s 11:30pm and I’ve had a pretty busy and different day so I’m settling down by reading blogs in my Google Reader. Some interesting posts I came upon tonight….


Feministing: Hallmark offers same-sex wedding greeting cards

It looks like Hallmark is targeting a new consumer.

While the language doesn’t directly refer to marriage (considering the fact that two states in this country actually recognize gay marriage), they were created shortly after California legalized. The cards have mushy language that could apply to marriage or civil unions like, “Two hearts. One promise.”

But, but…it’s Hallmark! The corporate monster that commercializes (and banks off of) every holiday to the point of puking, not to mention serves as a huge contributor to the heteronormative machine (Valentine’s Day, etc.).

That being said, this has to be more a good thing than bad, no? Thoughts? Has anyone seen any of these cards?


Feministing: Limbaugh calls Obama a “little black man-child”

On his radio show yesterday, Rush Limbaugh said,

Obama’s patriotism is not being attacked in an ad. McCain’s just out there saying he’s putting his own personal political ambition ahead of the country’s. It’s — you know, it’s just — it’s just we can’t hit the girl. I don’t care how far feminism’s saying, you can’t hit the girl, and you can’t — you can’t criticize the little black man-child. You just can’t do it, ’cause it’s just not right. It’s not fair. He’s such a victim

.


Pandagon: The homophobe/womb control heads to Denver

Good lord, this is going to be a zoo. (Christian Newswire):

Randall Terry States:

“A group of pro-life activists will get arrested – perhaps more than once – in order to draw focus to Obama’s hard core support of child-killing. We will definitely be arrested on Tuesday, August 26 at a location to be announced – and perhaps sooner.

“We intend to be “Party Crashers” to disrupt a number of DNC events, including, but not limited to: the Interfaith Gathering; Opening Reception; African American Caucus; Hispanic Caucus; Women’s Caucus; Faith Forum; the Opening of the DNC; and more.

Also, the brochures, “Real Solutions for the Negro Problem” and “Is it Immoral to Vote for Obama for President?” can be read at http://www.humbleplea.com

Not to be topped, the freaks from Operation Save America (founded by Terry), led by the unhinged Flip Benham, plan to be there. Flip and his crew of homophobes have descended on NC Pride in Durham for the last couple of years, and they didn’t convert anyone—all everyone did was laugh at the ridiculous schtick.


Ricky Martin Always Wanted To Be a Dad


Philadelphia Will Do: Larry Mendte Didn’t Need To Get Alycia Lane’s Bikini Photos

from Larry Mendte’ s statement:

Let me explain. This whole episode started five years ago when Alycia Lane came to Philadelphia. Almost immediately, Dawn heard rumors that Alycia and I were a little too close and she should watch out.

The rumors were true. Alycia and I had a flirtatious, unprofessional, and improper relationship.

Dawn found proof of that relationship when she waited in my office on New Years Day 2005 and read emails that I had left out on my desk, emails between Alycia and me that confirmed her suspicions.

Dawn confronted me with the emails. I told her the truth. I told her I loved her, and I apologized. I then immediately stopped having long dinners with Alycia, staying out late with Alycia, and I stopped allowing her to come into my office to do her makeup everyday.

The relationship that was once close quickly turned into a personal feud….


McCain: A politician you can mock:


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Possible cell phone ban in Philly?

From today’s KYW Newsradio, there is a Philly cell phone ban to be proposed. And I think it’s about time. Unfortunately, as I’ve witnessed when driving in NJ, people won’t always follow the law like they should, but I still think a law like this would be a step in the right direction.

The article says:

City Councilman Bill Greenlee says such a ban in a city this big is sorely needed:

“I think it’s clear that when somebody is on a cell phone, a hand held cell phone — or texting, which I think is even worse. They’re both bad, but I think texting is even worse — that they’re clearly not paying as much attention as they would otherwise.”

but since this would be a local city law, rather than a state law:

But its unclear whether a Philadelphia only cell phone ban as proposed would hold up in court. The state motor vehicle code seems to prohibit such local laws, but Green and Greenlee insist that their measure, if approved, would hold up in court.

On so many occasions while driving in Philly (and in the ‘burbs), I’ve seen someone driving either too fast or too slow, or just plain not paying attention to the road, only to see they’re busy gabbing on the cell phone. Often it’s the ones driving a monster SUV or mega truck with a Support Our Troops magnet and/or God Bless America stickers all over the car that could kill any smaller cars in an instant, but sometimes it’s the little zippy cars.

In doing a search for information on cell phone safety in cars, I came upon a few interesting statistics. Via an article from the Insurance Information Institute:

  • A survey of dangerous driver behavior was released in January 2007 by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. The survey of 1,200 drivers found that 73 percent talk on cellphones while driving. Cellphone use was highest among young drivers.
  • Text messaging, or “texting” by teens, a driving distraction related to cellphone use, was the subject of an August 2006 Teens Today survey conducted by the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety and Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD). The survey showed that teens considered sending text messages via cellphones to be their biggest distraction. Of the teens surveyed, 37 percent said that text messaging was extremely or very distracting, while 20 percent said that they were distracted by their emotional states and 19 percent said that having friends in the car was distracting. The January 2007 survey by Nationwide found that 19 percent of motorists say they text message while driving.
  • Motorists who use cellphones while driving are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves, according to a study of drivers in Perth, Australia, conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The results, published in July 2005, suggest that banning hand-held phone use will not necessarily improve safety if drivers simply switch to hand-free phones. The study found that injury crash risk didn’t vary with type of phone.
  • A study released in April 2006 found that almost 80 percent of crashes and 65 percent of near-crashes involved some form of driver inattention within three seconds of the event. The study, The 100-Car Naturalistic Driving Study, conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), breaks new ground. (Earlier research found that driver inattention was responsible for 25 to 30 percent of crashes.) The new study found that the most common distraction is the use of cellphones, followed by drowsiness. However, cellphone use is far less likely to be the cause of a crash or near-miss than other distractions, according to the study. For example, while reaching for a moving object such as a falling cup increased the risk of a crash or near-crash by nine times, talking or listening on a hand-held cellphone only increased the risk by 1.3 times. The study tracked the behavior of the 241 drivers of 100 vehicles for more than one year. The drivers were involved in 82 crashes, 761 near-crashes and 8,295 critical incidents.

There was also a study by the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society that found Hands-On or Hands-Free, Using a Cell Phone While Driving Is Not Safe… and an article from Associated Content, Driving and Cell Phones Still Don’t Mix.

Whatever happens, I really think this would be a great move by Philly and hope that, if it passes, it will eventually spread and create the law throughout the state.

Larry Mendte melodrama

I have been following the story about Larry Mendte with a moderate amount of interest. I don’t usually get into these types of Philadelphia stories that they beat into the ground, especially considering all the problems in this city that will take forever to resolve. Michael Nutter’s doing a great job and I still say I’m so proud of our city for voting him in. But…my discussion about the troubles in Philadelphia can be put off for another blog.

Back to Larry Mendte, though…of all the newscasters in Philly, he’s one that I’ve always felt a certain fondness towards, moreso since I officially moved here. Larry and his wife, Fox news anchor Dawn Stensland, live in Chestnut Hill and on several occasions I’ve seen him come into Starbucks. He’s always seemed like a generally good guy. My friend H worked with him, too. After graduating college, she got a job at NBC-10 through an internship she had there, and told me about what a rough time she had with the majority of her co-workers at the station, including one of the weekend anchors that really treated her like crap. She said, though, of all the anchors there, Larry Mendte and John Bolaris were among the nicest ones. Larry always made people laugh and was always telling jokes about Dawn’s absent-mindedness. So, knowing what I know of Larry and the fact he was a bright spot for my friend during one of her more difficult times, I was very disappointed to hear of these allegations against Larry. Now that Larry has been convicted and will likely be go behind bars for these charges, I’m still not going to be quick to jump down his throat. What he did was certainly wrong and he should get some punishment, but I hope he eventually comes out of this learning a good lesson and maybe gets back into the media in some form.