Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Sorry Roman, but......

Sorry Roman Polanski, but you belong in jail.

I always find myself amazed at how quickly we are willing to forgive and forget the criminal or ethical indiscretions of celebrities.

For those who do not know the back story, please allow me a chance to explain a bit.

Roman Polanski was born in France, but raised in Poland prior to the start of WWII. During the war, he lived in the Krakow Ghetto, and his mother died at Auschwitz. He would eventually wind up in America as a movie director (I know, I've made a big jump here). He married an actress named Sharon Tate, who became pregnant with his child. While she was 8 months pregnant, she was murdered by the Manson Family (Charles, not Marilyn). All of this is a lot for one life to bear. I do not deny it.

But things would get a little sticky. You see, Mr. Polanski had a 13 year old girl come to his house. She was left unattended (Which makes you wonder what parent leaves their tween daughter with an older man, but anyways.....) for a photo shoot at Jack Nicholson's home (Nicholson has no other connection to this event). According to his victim, he gave her Champagne and Quaaludes. She protested the sexual acts, and Mr. Polanski then , allegedly, forcibly, performed Oral,Vaginal, and Anal Sex on her. A 13 year old child!

Mr. Polanski was arrested. And was initially charged with rape by use of drugs, perversion, sodomy, lewd and lascivious act upon a child under 14, and furnishing a controlled substance to a minor. But for some reason, he was allowed to plead to Unlawful sex with a minor. He was supposed to spend 90 days at Chico State Prison for a psychiatric evaluation.

Now how this was ever allowed is infuriating to me. 90 Days in jail for drugging and raping a child? What The Fuck???

Now the judge apparently decided that he could be famous, or something. And it appeared that the judge was going to back out of allowing the plea deal to go through. Maybe he had a lapse of reason, or maybe he thought he could drag it out. Who the hell knows. Afraid of having to do real jail time for committing a heinous crime, Mr. Polanski fled to France.

And he's lived there, in a luxurious chalet, for 30 years. His supporters have claimed that he's had a hard enough life, and that he's been forced to live in exile. He even won an academy award. Harrison Ford picked it up and delivered it to him.

Why do some people feel that this was ok? The same thing with Woody Allen? He married his adopted step daughter and had a kid with her. What The Fuck??

If either of these guys was just Randy or Walter from down the block, they'd immediately be referred to as Creepy Randy, or Weirdo Walt. You wouldn't send your kids to their house to play with their kids. In fact, look at Phillip Garrido (The guy who kidnapped and fathered children with Jaycee Dugard). Is he that much further away from Polanski? Yes, Polanski didn't keep his victim locked away in his creepy campout for 18 years. But they're both pedophiles who believe they are geniuses. Their biggest difference is that Polanski has money, and powerful friends, and Garrido really is the creepy guy. But if Polanski was broke, and didn't know Harvey Weinstein, and Jack Nicholson, he'd be the same creepy guy.

Recently, Polanski had lawyers file a motion for dismissal, citing judicial misconduct. The presiding judge said he'd hear the case (Since the first judge has died), however Mr. Polanski would need to return to the U.S. for the case. He even said it was possible that Mr. Polanski would not be jailed while awaiting disposition. He still refused to come back to the U.S. His motion was dismissed.

Last week, he was picked up by Swiss authorities, and is being held. And all his familiar supporters have come out, and asked for him to get bail, and asked that he not be returned to The States. How would we all fair in these situations?

Would Harvey Weinstein, or Harrison Ford come speak out for me if I was in this situation? Or better yet, would a judge listen to my friends and allow me to receive bail, after I already fled the country once? I think we all know the answer.

But the problem, I believe, is us. You see, we sit around and idolize these entertainers, instead of appreciating them for what they are...ENTERTAINERS! Actors, Musicians,Artists, Athletes, and the such are nothing more than entertainers. Do we really need to be involved in every detail of these peoples lives? Do we really need to elevate them above the rest of society? They've made our lives more fun, perhaps, but they haven't really improved out lots in life, have they?

We need to step back, and reevaluate the relationships we have with celebrity. Stalin knew this, and exploited it with his "Cult of Personality". We don't follow the Starbucks Barista home, and wait for them to sign an autographs after their shifts. But they provide a service, as do entertainers. We need to stop. Stop with idol worship. Stop with the use of the phrase "Hero".

We can't live in an equal society, if we don't hold people to the same standards. How can we complain when we aren't held to the same standards?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

President Carter's statements about racism and Obama.


Posted: Tuesday, September 15, 2009 6:44 PM by Mark Murray
Filed Under: ,

From NBC's Mark Murray
In an interview with NBC's Brian Williams, former Democratic President Jimmy Carter attributed much of the conservative opposition that President Obama is receiving to the issue of race.

"I think an overwhelming portion of the intensely demonstrated animosity toward President Barack Obama is based on the fact that he is a black man," Carter said. "I live in the South, and I've seen the South come a long way, and I've seen the rest of the country that share the South's attitude toward minority groups at that time, particularly African Americans."

Carter continued, "And that racism inclination still exists. And I think it's bubbled up to the surface because of the belief among many white people, not just in the South but around the country, that African-Americans are not qualified to lead this great country. It's an abominable circumstance, and it grieves me and concerns me very deeply."


I have for sometime felt Race has been a big issue with Obama. Now, not everyone with a criticism of Obama is a racist. And I would caution against wantonly accusing someone of being a Racist. It's a terrible accusation when untrue because it shapes peoples opinions.

That being said, I do feel that it is a fair question to ask. If conservatives were to argue policy points and things of that nature, well, that's certainly fair game. But I really haven't heard any actual debate from the right wing. The only thing they keep saying is "We have to stop the government takeover of healthcare". But at no point in time do they tell you why they feel this way. They don't tell you what they think should be done. Just what shouldn't be. That's not leadership. That's Cowardice! And it is certainly fair to question it's root causes, and to wonder if they are racist.

15 years ago, Then First Lady, Hillary Clinton attempted to reform healthcare conservatives argued policy points. They challenged the Democrats, and they won (like it or not). Today, they organize protests of people who show up with guns, and hold up signs saying "We want 'our' country back!". Which country is that? the Jim Crow, "Separate But Equal" country? The Slavery country? The Pre-Civil Rights Country?

I want the country we were promised as kids. The one where everyone is equal. I want the "Good Old Days" when one member of the family worked a career and was able to buy a house, and a new car, and send all of his kids to college, and had enough money to retire at 60. Except I want it for everyone. Black, White, Asian, Hispanic, Gay, Straight......EVERYONE

It's time to move forward. There are things we can all do. Start opening up ourselves to other communities. Stop comparing anyone to Hitler. Start voting for regular people to elected office. Remove the Confederate Flag (No other losing side is allowed to incorporate their treasonous banner into the public).

Forward, not backwards.....

Monday, September 14, 2009

RIP Crystal Lee Sutton

Inspiration for movie ‘Norma Rae’ dies at 68

Labor organizer succumbed to long battle with brain cancer

updated 2 hours, 11 minutes ago

RALEIGH, North Carolina - Crystal Lee Sutton, whose fight to unionize Southern textile plants with low pay and poor conditions was dramatized in the film “Norma Rae,” has died. She was 68.

Sutton died Friday in a hospice after a long battle with brain cancer, her son, Jay Jordan, said Monday.

“She fought it as long as she could and she crossed on over to her new life,” he said.

Actress Sally Field portrayed a character based on Sutton in the movie and won a best-actress Academy Award.

Field said in a statement Sutton was “a remarkable woman whose brave struggles have left a lasting impact on this country and without doubt, on me personally. Portraying Crystal Lee Sutton in ’Norma Rae,’ however loosely based, not only elevated me as an actress, but as a human being.”

In 1973, Sutton was a 33-year-old mother of three earning $2.65 an hour folding towels at J.P. Stevens when a manager fired her for pro-union activity.

In a final act of defiance before police hauled her out, Sutton, who had worked at the plant for 16 years, wrote “UNION” on a piece of cardboard and climbed onto a table on the plant floor. Other employees responded by shutting down their machines.

Union organizers had targeted J.P. Stevens, then the country’s second-largest textile manufacturer, because the industry was deeply entwined in Southern culture and spread across the region’s small towns. However, North Carolina continues to have one of the lowest percentages of unionized workers in the country.

Bruce Raynor, president of Workers United and executive vice president of the Service Employees International Union, worked with Sutton to organize the Stevens plants. In 1974, the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union won the right to represent 3,000 employees at seven Roanoke Rapids plants in northeastern North Carolina.

“Crystal was an amazing symbol of workers standing up in the South against overwhelming odds — and standing up and winning,” Raynor said Monday. “The fact that Crystal was a woman in the ’70s, leading a struggle of thousands of other textile workers against very powerful, virulently anti-union mill companies, inspired a whole generation of people — of women workers, workers of color and white workers.”

Raynor said Sutton was also a symbol of the national health care struggle. In a June 2008 interview with The Times-News of Burlington, Sutton said she couldn’t get possible life-saving medicines for two months because her insurance company wouldn’t cover them. She eventually received the drugs.

“How in the world can it take so long to find out (whether they would cover the medicine or not) when it could be a matter of life or death,” she said. “It is almost like, in a way, committing murder.”

Sutton’s son said his mother kept a photo of Field in the movie’s climactic scene on her living room wall at her home in Burlington, about 20 miles east of Greensboro. But despite what many people think, she got little profit from the movie or an earlier book written about her, he said.

“When they find out she lived very, very modestly, even poorly, in Burlington, they’re surprised,” he said.

Jordan said his mother spent years as a labor organizer in the 1970s. She later became a certified nursing assistant in 1988 but had not been able to work for several years because of illnesses.

“She never would have been rich. She would have given it to anyone she called the working class poor, people that were deprived,” Jordan said.

Sutton donated her letters and papers to Alamance Community College in 2007. She said: “I didn’t want them to go to some fancy university; I wanted them to go to a college that served the ordinary folks.”


About Me

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I am married and I am a proud father. I have family that I love, and friends that are family. I am very opinionated.