Gender Neutral Marriage Bill

If you're interested in this bill (depending on your opinion, of course), this is an easy way to let the Governor know about it.

Stolen from UCLA LJ community (but it's worth repeating):

California Gov. Schwarzenegger's office is accepting calls from anywhere regarding their marriage equality bill. It passed both houses of their legislature, but needs the Governor's approval. It's all automated, so you don't have to talk to anyone.

Follow these directions:
1. Call the Governor: 916-445-2841 (This number is listed at www.governor.ca.gov)
2. Push: 2 (voice your opinion on legislation)you don't actually have to voice your opinion, this is just what the automated recording says)
3. Push: 1 (gender-neutral marriage bill - Senate Bill 849)
4. And push: 1 to support marriage equality

Vote as many times as you see fit...

Pass it on.

An essay.

I wrote this essay for a class I'm currently taking. It's titled

A Streetcar of a Different Color

note: it's easier to read if you're familiar with the film or the play, "A Streetcar Named Desire." Even the Simpson's version is helpful, but here's a quick explanation for those who need the background: everyone is poor. Stanley is an abusive (verbally and physically) husband, Stella is his wife who tries (and fails) to make things better, Blanche is Stella's sister, who is staying with them because otherwise, her troubles will catch up with her and she'll kill herself from depression. That's all you really need.

“A Streetcar Named Desire,” is a play that by all means I should understand. I am from a poor family, I routinely witness doomed relationships featuring dominant males who are often abusive (verbally, physically, or both); but I don’t feel that this play touches me in any special way. In fact, the reason I want to write about this play at all is because of the response of my peers. When the classroom lecture turned into more of a discussion, and worse yet when we watched clips from the video with Marlon Brando, I felt my stomach turn. I am incredibly concerned with the mental health of the student body.
This play should (by all means) have one of two effects on a reader/theatre-goer: they should either feel enlightened and empowered by the realization of their own horrible situation or repulsed and saddened by the show of force this play represents. From the charade of Blanche, the hopeless attempts to make things better by Stella, and the sheer ignorance of Stanley, there is nothing represented in this play that should elicit more than a nervous laugh, if anything. Nervous laughter is understandable: an attempt to laugh off a situation, to distance yourself, is very common and makes a lot of sense in light of “Streetcar.”
However, the laughter that occurred in the classroom last week was more than nervous laughter, and I find that disturbing, and it was made all the more disturbing by the fact that the majority of the laughter came from male students. Anyone who can laugh at the blatant abuse of women, broken men screaming in the streets, and the explosion of hair-trigger tempers has a problem. My response to the play as well as the video clips is one of repulsion. I have seen these things first hand, I have heard the screaming and seen the bruises. I can neither imagine myself perpetrating these acts nor being a steady victim, despite the fact that it is prevalent in the strata of society I come from. Through this sentence, I find my first entrance into why our responses differ.
Poverty is a defining factor in my life. In poor communities, domestic violence is far harder to ignore. Poor children don’t have anywhere to run to, and neither do their parents, when things start to go quickly downhill. In a richer family, emergency vacations can be taken, lawyers can be brought into play, and day help can be enlisted to watch over the children whilst the parents work things out behind closed doors (typically with a marriage counselor of some sort). As a result, children from more affluent families are less likely to see the full force of a domestic dispute. Given that the average income of a student’s parents at this college is almost ten times what my family made last year, I am making the assumption that the majority of my peers are better off than I am in these arguments. I have little in common with the general population of this campus, and my background is the defining force behind our differences.
My “peers” have most likely never seen the full force of a domestic dispute, and as such have trouble relating to the situation that the characters in “Streetcar” are doomed to live. It’s an abstract idea to them, an absurdity, but still nothing to be laughed at. Pain and suffering, not to mention violence, should never elicit laughter from an audience. Worse than this situation is what I saw happen last quarter while my fiancé and I were directing a production of “Cabaret.” As I’m sure you know, “Cabaret” has its humor moments, but is also, at its core, a story of heartbreak in Nazi Germany. If there is ever a situation that shouldn’t make people laugh, it’s the holocaust, right? Wrong: apparently on this campus, it is perfectly acceptable to laugh through an entire production of “Cabaret,” even while faced with characters wearing camp uniforms and the infamous yellow Star of David. While characters yell at each other, a woman is slapped, a relationship is ruined by the impending Nazi takeover, and a way of life (the life of the theatre) is crushed under goose-stepping feet, the audience at Thursday and Friday night’s showing of “Cabaret” giggled to themselves and occasionally had a whole-hearted guffaw at the expense of real tragedy. Unlike “Streetcar,” “Cabaret” is based primarily on a true story. It’s also important to note that most of the people who were laughing in the audience were (again) male students from our community.
Disconnection from issues to this degree is hard for me to believe. I don’t have much faith in public consciousness and I’m not easily disappointed by my “peers,” but this is truly disturbing. I don’t expect people my age to have a grip on modern issues like prisons, poverty, military action, politics or the like, but I do at least expect them to have the decency not to delight in the suffering of others. It would seem that the modern pop culture climate is just that, though. From television to movies, music to video games, popular culture is all about suffering. TV is predominantly ruled by “reality” shows, expertly crafted to expose the most revelry, deceit, and consequent guilt and pain possible (i.e. “The Real World,” “Survivor,” “Fear Factor,” etc). Movies are mindless trips through implausible situations, pain and recovery, but almost always a happy ending. Films that win Oscars are hardly crowd pleasers when it comes to the youth of America could you imagine any of the aforementioned young men watching “Monster”? How about “Hotel Rwanda”? No, my peers are into things more along the lines of “Sin City,” “xXx,” and “Harold and Kumar Go To Whitecastle.” Girls my age are disappointed when they go to see “Alfie,” and realize how incredibly depressing the plot is (note: none of them have the slightest clue that it’s a remake of a Michael Kane movie, either). Popular music is a binge and purge society of mindless violence through mainstream hip-hop, and melodramatic emotional release of Emo. Underground hip-hop, mindful of societal issues and historical untruths is ignored by today’s youth in lieu of more ephemeral dance club hits by artists like 50 Cent. Even Eminem, (who raps about killing the President of the United States on his new album) has fallen out of favor with most of my peers because of his consciousness. When his last album came out, there wasn’t a white kid in town who wasn’t blaring his CD, but not this time. Emo is the (supposed) evolution of Punk music, which has gone from intense social catalyst to angsty teenagers crying in the fetal position under their desks (see Dashboard Confessional). Video games have always been fairly mindless, but as of late have taken a turn for the worse. Though I myself enjoy video games, I have trouble dealing with the thought that anyone could do some of the things that games, as of late, contain. Not to beat a dead horse, but “Grand Theft Auto” has raised the bar for pain and suffering, and even games as seemingly innocent as “Fable” give you the ability to marry for a dowry and then murder your wife.
Any of these things on their own is acceptable, but when seen in a big picture with the unflattering results, our society takes on a darker turn. We are unable to cope with reality, suffering and pain. We are unable to learn from anything that is truly painful. There are intellectual offerings out there, but the future leaders of our society are not interested. When we begin to settle for movie, television and video game versions of reality, and the mindless falsity of manufactured emotion in music, there is definitely something wrong with this country. There is real heartbreak, real triumph, and real struggle in the world, but without knowing a Stella, a Blanche, or a Stanley, all they can do is laugh.

comments are welcome. i had more to write in this essay but i filled my quota a little quicker than expected. c'est la vie.
  • Current Music
    Reel Big Fish - just about everything they've ever done.

Theoretically, this could get me in big trouble...

This is for those of you who are familiar with the film Jesus Christ Superstar (or the stage productions, but i'm referencing the film). Either that, or you christians who are easily offended. Background, then question. Any answers are welcome.
We're doing jesus christ superstar next quarter, as we are a fledgling theatre production company on UCSB's campus. We have some major ideas concerning it, but my partner in crime is frightened by one idea in particular.
We're updating the play so that it's more modern. the hippie version had people running around in bell bottoms and what not, so for ours, they're going to be in modern dress. police uniforms and also military fatigues for the soldiers; hip-hop, punk, and hippie outfits for the revolutionaries following jesus, and judges robes, politicians suits, and the skeezy outfits of record producers for the bad guys.

All of these things are fine with her.

But, she was trying to figure out how to put jesus on a cross, and i said that in our day, we don't have crosses. We have lethal injection tables, which, ironic enough, lay you out like you're on a cross. I said we could show him getting strapped down, and then stand the table on end. He'd hang just like he was on a cross, and it'd be stable and easy to build. poignancy aside.

Now, a question for you all: do you think we'd be murdered by Christians if we did this? Most Christians i know are in favor of the death penalty, we're making a statement about our modern government, we're making a statement about intellectualism, being different, and against just about everything that this place holds dear.

This won't go over easy, but hey, we have to top Cabaret. Any and all comments are welcome, unless they are personal attacks (as per the rules of the community.)
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    confused inquisitive.


Hiya, I'm Siouxsie, I'm 16 from England.

I just thought I'd join this community as I have many theories about the universe/God/etc.

This may seem like a strange theory, but ever since I was young, my mother told me a thoery of God and Jesus being aliens (which i strongly believe), althoguh alot of people find it really amusing, and think that I'm just joking when i talk of it.

I was just wondering if I would be alowed to post this theory as some people may be offended ??

ancient astronauts...


this is a skull of one of the ancients. the original gods of tolchec and egyptian mythology. but mythology is simply knowledge passed down by word of mouth. the original story holds truth. "travelers of millions of years" is the name of the mothership Osiris piloted spoken of in the book of the dead. His body was preserved to endure the intergalactic voyage from a planet of the star Sirius named "Tettet", the only place mentioned prior to departure, and the only city not found on any ancient egyptian map. [see http://www.aldokkan.com/geography/geography.htm]

the voyage, across the stars of thousands of years, caused the calcium and phosphate regrowth in the skull to warp, due to the extreme ship inertia. making it that the original "gods" (aka that which is named from heaven, i.e. stars) all had elongated heads. these skulls are only from a specific era in history, where deformation is genetic and not caused by board deformation, and that date is 6,000 b.c. [see http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1430/is_n3_v15/ai_12935393]

furthermore, no offspring ever had this deformity, due to the fact earth born children would not be subjected by those forces. to make this point clear, we as humans are the aliens to this planet, there is no evolution from apes.

it takes only one person one lifetime to obtain a creative concept and achieve it. we didnt "evolve" the knowledge of fire, or farming, or architecture, nor even mathematics - over say a period of 50,000-150,000 years. it took one man, with one idea, one lifetime. Archemides, the wise greek mathematician, discovered the "method" a long lost book dating 200 b.c., which contains mathematical principles of calculus, which was later on lost during the middle ages. shame on you religion and your book burning. the method only lasted due to the fact paper was scarce, and the "method" was reused - its paper bleached and rewritten, as a hymn book. mathematical concepts today which are still being rediscovered. [see http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/archimedes/palimpsest.html]

such knowledge was not uncommon back then, for principles of electromagnetics of anti-gravity were well known, and used to move 50ton stones to build massive structures such as the egyptian pyramids, the aztec pyramids, stonehenge, and even the foundation layer to the temple of jerusalem. but with war and revolt, brings destruction. with destruction brings a loss of knowledge. [see http://jnaudin.free.fr/lifters/main.htm]

and this is exactly what happened to those who first landed. the rules and laws of the past world no longer applied, and the authority of the ships pilot, Osirus, no longer applied. our earth, being so vast left anyone who disagreed with a different opinion room to walk away. yet thousands of years later the offsprings of those people would have radical differing opinions, beliefs, skills, language and race.

why is it christianity has to think it is the superior belief? it wasnt even a concept when our first beings arrived. at 0 a.d., this followed some 6000 years of solid knowledge. in fact, as far as any relevancy to WHAT the real knowledge was passed on, it was bent on destroying and overthrowing what was true. (see moses vs. the egyptians.)

the same applies to Islamic. mohammed in 600 a.d. wanted to re-invent what was first followed, which was worshiping the sun disk and the moon crescent. while this main belief is true to the original concept, the law of islam was SOLELY at the whim of what mohammed thought was correct. in other words, the theme was brought back, but the methodology was completely new. like Karl Marx, his belief was persuaded to be the correct one and made illegal to think any other way.

and with only 2 main beliefs left, Christianity and Islamic, it is the same saga. those rebelling and rejecting what the elders said was true. on that note, is Isamicism any more evil than Christianity? Or is it the rules and laws themselves that create this whole mess? Those that see the stupidity of the conflict, whatever its form could choose to be atheist or agnostic, yet is that any more correct? Is the war of the gods we believe are true bent on destroying each other at all productive when the most important knowledge, which is our origin is far far gone even relevant?

one could say this is all political - well it is. we are a modern 21st century worldwide culture of technology. we are not animalistic, yet we act that way. truely we are the aliens, but do not call ourselves that anymore because our drama has forced us to identify with this planet now. this planet if we had never arrived might still just be roaming with animals and be a pure ecosystem. what rights should we really have to do what we do on this rock spinning around this star?

it only takes one person one lifetime.

Thought this was interesting

I read this article today about a woman who was mistakenly implanted with another couple's fertilized embryo (the doctor said he realized it right away but didn't want the woman to have an abortion and so "left it up to God"). She carried the baby, gave birth, and it wasn't until the boy was three that the other couple found out and lobbied for the baby to be given to them.

Not sure who is right here, but I thought that the argument the author makes about "What Makes a Mother" was very interesting and perfect for this community.

new people, and a restatement of certain principles of the community:

a few new people have taken an interest in the site. funny, i haven't updated in over a month and now everyone wants to talk (not that i'm bitter or anything). i just want to point out to anyone reading this that as long as you go with the basic parameters of the community, you're welcome to post anything in the main forum. note: to be within those parameters, it must be something theoretical (preferably related to society in general). i would like to post something of real worth here, a question or two, but i can't think of any good ones. i'd hate to see the community suffer just because i didn't have a burning question, so please step up if you have anything to say. that is all.
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    optimistic optimistic

what say you...

what do you trace the repression of emotions in our society to? by this, i mean, men won't cry, talk about anything that has to do with them, etc. anyone have a brief history of it or better yet some theorist's ideas?
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    thoughtful thoughtful

(no subject)

I had an interesting conversation with my aunt recently. I told her that I am going to go to a Weird Al show and I jokingly said, "I would totally marry him if he wasn't already taken because he's hot and Jewish." (please don't judge me too harshly on my weird sense of humor) My aunt replies with something like, "You can't do that sweetie, he's Jewish and you aren't." I asked her to elaborate on her reply and she asked what I would do about my children's religious upbringing, to which I replied that I would have them learn both and choose for themselves when they were old enough. After a few more questions like this, she ended the conversation by saying that it didn't really matter what you think might work because there isn't a jewish mother in the world who would allow their son to marry outside their religion.

Do you think its possible for two people of different religons to live a happy life together?

I'm also curious to know what you might think makes my aunt respond this way. I said the same thing to my mom and she didn't respond the same way (she just thought it was weird that I would marry someone who sang about lazagna and stuff).

society or humanity?

so far, all of the theorists i've read have blamed most every problem in today's world on society (claiming that people were basically swept up into the nonsense that we experience today). i'll put the question into a specific: gender theory.

do you think that human nature is to blame for our patriarchal society or is it society's fault that women can't get equal treatment? in a related topic, do you think society is to blame for the defamation of homosexuals or is it something in man's nature that makes him declare gender diversity to be a plague on this world?

if you have any authors who discuss these things, please list them in your comment, but as always, i'm just as interested in people's personal theories on the subject. disclaimer: i'm for equal rights in just about everything and am using popular opinion in the question. as far as popular being correct, well, we know that doesn't work out most of the time.
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    thoughtful thoughtful