Archive for September 24th, 2012

Conservatives vs. Reality

Monday, September 24th, 2012

The New York City Department of Education is providing morning-after pills (Plan B – emergency contraception) and other birth control methods to students at city high schools. The distribution policy does not require parental approval. Some conservative parents are up in arms and say the schools are “supporting immorality.”

7000 girls in New York City get pregnant by the time they’re 17. About half of them choose the tragedy of abortion. Wouldn’t it be much more civilized if adults accepted the fact teens have sex and would be willing to support safe and sane plans to protect them?

The same old, trite arguments are being rolled out against the idea:

“This encourages kids to have sex…” Untrue. No legitimate studies support this view.
“I don’t want my tax dollars….” Bullshit. You’d feel the exact same way if these programs were privately funded.
“Kids shouldn’t be having sex …” Time to take a reality pill.
“Parents should …” Reality pill #2.
“My kids would never …” Wrong. Teenage sex runs across every socio-economic indicator.

The Center for Disease Control said 2011 was the first year in decades teen pregnancies went down in the US.  Although we still lead the entire Western World in this category, sex education and easy-to-get birth control were the major factors in helping solve this problem. Waving bloody signs and cutting off funding to Planned Parenthood were not mentioned as any help at all.

There’s A Fungus Among Us

Monday, September 24th, 2012

The people in Andover, New York (pop. 989) are rarely counted in presidential election polls. That’s unfortunate because they’ve chosen the correct candidate for President in every single election since 1992! And they choose the winners in a very peculiar way – tree fungus.

Over 20 years ago, a rotting branch was sawed off one of the largest trees in the town park by the maintenance crew.  Each fall since then a new crop of fungus, specifically Phellinus pini, has grown over the empty spot. Every election year the townspeople “agree” (after some debate) which candidate it resembles the most.

This year the hands down favorite is Barack Obama.

When asked if comparing a Presidential candidate’s face with tree fungus isn’t a little insulting, Town Mayor Glenn Carney said, “Maybe insulting to the fungus.  These guys come around every few years leeching off the taxpayers and not doing anything except looking ugly.”