Saturday, March 31, 2007
When it came time to be counted, Rep. Larry Hosch, DFL Dist 19A, passed, and enabled the smoked medical marijuana bill to clear the Health Care and Human Services Finance Committee this morning.
In a rare Saturday morning session the measure passed by a narrow 7-6 vote. Hoschs' vote would have killed the bill. Voting "yes" were DFL Representatives Cy Thao 65A, Thomas Huntley 7A, Paul Thiessen 63A, Erin Murphy 64A, Tina Liebling 30A, Diane Loefler 59A and Neva Walker 61B.
Opposition included DFL Rep. Julie Bunn 56A, who joined GOP Representatives Laura Brod 25A, Bruce Anderson 19A, Steve Gottwalt 15A, Sondra Erickson 16A, and Matt Dean 52A. Lead GOP Representative Jim Abeler and Joyce Peppin 32A were not present.
Hosch, who skipped the last hearing says he doesn't know where he stands on the bill. Minor amendments to the bill have caused him to reconsider his original opposition. However, no amount of tinkering will address the harm suffered by countless individuals - either directly or indirectly - due to pot.
Marijuana linked to murder in Chaska and Anoka
For example, in December, Chaska native, Grant Everson was convicted in the murder of his mother. According to the Star Tribune, "Grant Everson is convicted of plotting with his friend, Joel Beckrich, 21, to slit Tom and Nancy Everson's throats with box cutters as they slept and use the insurance payout to open a coffee chop and sell marijuana in Amsterdam, the Netherlands."
"The prosecution argued that Grant primarily wanted revenge on his parents for being too hard on him about work and school; he was earning a 0.0 grade-point average, and recently dropped out of technical school, wasn't working and spent a lot of time smoking marijuana and playing video games with friends, including Beckrich," the Star Tribune reported.
In Anoka County Jason Gonsioroski recently pleaded guilty to his daughter's death due to scalding, says the Pioneer Press. Gonsioroski portrayed himself as a "pot-smoking stay at home dad."
According to Lisa Sweetingham of Court TV, in California, In a fit of rage, 16 year old Scott Dyleski bludgeoned to death his 52 year old neighbor. Why? Because Dyleski and a friend had devised a plot to steal credit card numbers from his neighbor and buy marijuana-growing equipment online. The friend was to research the hydroponics equipment needed, while Dyleski would steal his neighbors credit information.
"During trial, prosecutor Hal Jewett theorized that Dyleski killed his neighbor in a case of rage and mistaken identity," says Sweetingham.
Clearly, bad public policy hurts women and children: a mother, daughter, and innocent neighbor all dead in pot related crimes.
Maybe it's time we demonstrated some compassion for these people as well.
Thursday, March 29, 2007
"Cannabis smoking may cause 5 per cent of lung cancer cases in people up to middle age, according to a New Zealand study which challenges international thinking on the drug."
The smoking of marijuana for medical purposes is a dangerous way to administer THC.
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Homosexual couple sues Rochester Athletic Club over refusal to treat them like a married couple
Group links lawsuit with legislative efforts to create domestic status for homosexual couples as part of systematic effort to redefine marriage in Minnesota
MINNEAPOLIS – Tom Prichard, president of the Minnesota Family Council (MFC), said a lawsuit challenging the Rochester Athletic Club’s family membership policy which recognizes only married couples in their family membership is part of a systematic effort to redefine marriage in Minnesota.
“This lawsuit is another example of efforts by homosexual activists to redefine marriage. They’re using the legal system as well as the legislative process to achieve their goals,” said Prichard.
The Rochester Athletic Club is being sued by a lesbian couple who claim the Athletic Club’s family policy, which applies toward “legally married only” couples, is a violation of the state’s anti-discrimination laws based on sexual orientation.
“We’re seeing a systematic effort by homosexual activists at the legislature to lay the legal foundation for overturning Minnesota’s marriages. Now they’re attempting to force private organizations to treat homosexual couples on par with married couples. That certainly sounds like a push towards same sex marriage to me,” said Prichard.
“A vote in favor of domestic partner status for gay couples is a vote to legalize same-sex marriage,” said Chuck Darrell, MFC director of communications. “OutFront is sending a clear signal that they will never compromise until same-sex marriage is legalized. This is exactly why we need a marriage amendment,” he said.
In the state legislature, bills are moving forward which will provide marital benefits and marital type status for homosexual state employees (SF 1369/HF 1618) and local government employees (SF 960/HF 1097) through domestic partnerships. Domestic partner recognition is also being pushed for hospital visitation (SF 1398/HF 1589) and sick leave benefits (SF 1128/HF 219).
“The end game in all of this is a legal imposition of homosexual marriage upon the state of Minnesota. Domestic partner benefits and a legal attack on private businesses are merely part of their strategy,” concluded Prichard. “The result will be the further destabilization and redefinition of marriage. All of society suffers when marriage breaks down, particularly children who will be even more unlikely to be raised by a mother and a father.”
Last week, Super Bowl-winning Coach Tony Dungy spoke about his support for traditional marriage and efforts now underway to protect the institution from radical redefinition by Indiana judges. With those comments, he quickly became the target of pro-gay activists. (To view Dungy's comments, click here .)
While accepting an award from the Indiana Family Institute (IFI), a state-based family policy council proudly associated with Focus on the Family, the Indianapolis Colts Coach endorsed the Indiana Marriage Amendment. It would define marriage as the union of a man and a woman in the state constitution.
IFI is a key promoter of the Marriage Amendment, and Dungy said he "appreciate(s) the stance they're taking, and I embrace that stance."
"We're not anti-anything else," he said. "We're not trying to downgrade anyone else. But we're trying to promote the family – family values the Lord's way."
Dungy's mere presence at the IFI banquet generated outrage among the pro-gay community months ago, but his comments ensured their ire. Focus on the Family Action Chairman James C. Dobson, Ph.D., praised Dungy for his principled stand in support of marriage as God ordained it.
"Tony Dungy has demonstrated he is not only a great coach, but a good and brave man," he said. "To defend God's truth so simply and strongly on what marriage ought to mean is to invite a blitz of hateful attacks from the homosexual activists and others on the left.
"Coach Dungy is no stranger to applause, of course. We applaud him today for his courage and his commitment to the Lord."
It's clear that those who disagree with Dungy would like nothing less than to strip him of his First Amendment right to free speech and to share his deeply held religious beliefs.
Gay-activist Web sites have launched a campaign aimed at forcing the Colts organization to censure their coach. In response to the criticism Dungy said, "They don't know me very well."
Sunday, March 25, 2007
"Pawlenty's spokesman, Brian McClung, said the governor has always made clear he is opposed to the state offering domestic partnership benefits. He said Pawlenty is willing to veto the entire state government finance bill - the vehicle for the benefits - over the issue. "
"One of the things that concerns us is that the governor has been willing to set aside controversial issues and focus on bread-and-butter items, and we see here that Senate Democrats are unwilling to do that in the spirit of cooperation," McClung said.
Saturday, March 24, 2007
The true nature of the discriminatory domestic partnership provision in the senate omnibus bill was revealed today by Sen. Sandy Pappas who admitted the intent of the "insurance" provision was to recognize committed relationships by people of the same sex.
Although the bill defines domestic partnership as person's of the same-sex only, Sen. Don Betzold was confused as to how anyone could "pretend" and "read stuff" into the wording.
Benefits were denied for two sisters or two brothers, a child and a dependent parent, a brother and a sister, two heterosexuals in a committed relationship, etc.
Honest common sense was provided by Sen. Tom Neuville, "I don't believe this is about insurance. I believe it is about laying a building block or corner stone for same-sex marriage."
I think Sen. Pappas would agree.
Sen. Dave Hann stated this is why we need an amendment to define marriage as between one man and one woman.
Friday, March 23, 2007
MFC supports school choice as a key part of the solution to the problem off ailing public schools. Nobody cares more about the education of children than their parents do, and nobody is in a better position to determine what's best for their children's education than the parents are.
So we share the dismay of charter school supporters around the state at the Minnesota Senate proposal to limit school choice by capping the number of charter schools in the state at barely more than the current number (Pioneer Press, March 23rd).
Minnesota's experience with charter schools may not be problem-free, but there is no disputing the fact that they have given thousands of students, and their parents, a desperately needed alternative to public schools that were letting them down. Nick Coleman's ranting in the Strib not withstanding, the success of the charter school experiment makes the senate proposal to pull the plug on them that much more difficult to explain. Even House education advocate, Rep. Mindy Greiling (DFL-Roseville) - no moderate herself - described the proposal as "a pretty loopy idea that came out of left field," according to the Pioneer Press.
We think the Senate's "loopy" proposal reveals who's really in control overthere: Education Minnesota, the state's largest teachers' union, which played a major role in the DFL legislative gains last November, is calling in it's chips.
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
OutFront demands discriminatory, domestic partner status to allow two in an emergency room - everyone else can wait.
Like most hospitals in the metro area, MFC supports visitation privileges for homosexual couples. In fact, a brief survey of a half dozen metro area hospitals failed to discover a hospital that denied visitation to homosexual partners. One hospital rhetorically asked how they would know if a visitor was a brother, sister, or lover?
So, if gay partners can already visit one another in the hospital, then why does OutFront insist upon passing legislation (HF 1589, SF 1398) creating special "domestic partner" status for homosexual visitation purposes?
Apparently because they want special emergency room privledges.A recent OutFront press release shed light on "Compelling" senate testimony by J. Lindsay Flint, "whose partner was denied access to the emergency room where Lindsay was with their two-year-old son as he was suffering from pneumonia. 'I am scared because I know my son is very ill and not able to breathe. The last thing I want to be doing is justifying why we both had the right to be in this room.'"
Lindsay's partner was wasting her time if she was using her sexual orientation to justify her right to be in the emergency room. The same survey discovered that hospitals have a general policy of allowing only one person in an emergency room with a patient at a time. Since Lindsay was already in the emergency room, her partner simply had to wait her turn - like everyone else.
Do homosexuals really need special "domestic partner" status to allow two in an emergency room? Are their needs any different than other emergency room patients?
Clearly, OutFront is trying to create a special, discriminatory status where none is needed.
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Normally, you would think society would discourage people from engaging in destructive behavior. Take alcoholism for example. Although influenced by genetics, it’s fundamentally a behavior. Alcoholism is associated with a reduced life expectancy of 5 to 10 years, chronic and sometimes fatal liver cancer, pneumonia, higher rates of suicide, and mental disabilities. Costly treatment usually helps only 30% of those seeking it. Naturally, society does whatever it can to discourage people from abusing alcohol and falling into alcoholism.
There’s another behavioral condition that reduces one’s life expectancy by up to 25 years, is associated with chronic and sometimes fatal liver cancer, fatal immune system disease, fatal rectal cancer and higher rates of suicide. Yet treatment usually results in a 50% success rate. The difference is that society often applauds and encourages this behavior. What am I talking about? It’s called homosexuality.
Dr. Jeffrey Satinover wrote this striking comparison of alcoholism and homosexuality in his book, Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth. The comparison shows that homosexual behavior is more dangerous than alcoholism. What’s so sad is that alcoholism is discouraged and frowned upon while homosexuality is applauded and even celebrated by many in society.
True concern for homosexuals involves confronting - not endorsing homosexual behavior. While this might not be popular, it’s the right and loving thing to do.
Saturday, March 10, 2007
Once again the Minnesota School Health Education Conference rates an "F" in its advice to teens about sex education.
The Birds & Bees Project presenter, Amanda Danzeisen, led the session entitled "Teaching Teens about Pregnancy Options." Danzeisen stated that when speaking to teens you must tell them, "there is no right or wrong, and no good or bad choices." Students must make "the decision that is best for them."
The 187-page "Educator's Guide to Reproductive Health" was available to educators. This educator;'s guide is nothing more than a how-to manual for teaching homosexual sex and a range of sexual options to teens.
The "Educator's Guide to Reproductive Health" emphasizes the importance of using "inclusive language when discussing abstinence," and says to define sex as "oral, anal, and vaginal rather that just vaginal." This "...Will help to create a respectful and inclusive classroom environment." According to the educator's guide, defining sex only as "penile-vaginal" excludes gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning (GLBTQ) youth and will "reinforce stereotypes about gender and sexual orientation."
Moral relativism is paramount in this guidebook as all decisions for teens are to be respected about whether "to be, or not to be, sexually active." Students must figure it out on their own as they learn to "develop their own values" apart from their parents.
Lesson one instructs students to discuss what they feel is OK for them to do as they learn the importance of "defining 'abstinence' for themselves." The behaviors that are listed include: cuddling without clothes on, giving oral sex, having anal intercourse, having vaginal intercourse, rubbing bodies together with clothes on, masturbating with a partner, touching a partner's genitals etc.
Lesson plans for this same age group include how to make a dental dam in case your child should choose to participate in "cunnilingus, analingus or rimming."
After all, the guide states, "People who are questioning their sexual orientation many experiment in an effort to determine their sexual identity."
Amanda assured attendees that all of their information is presented in a "non-biased format." When questioned from the audience as to why one classroom scenario refers to pregnant Kendra as pro-choice, but does not describe her boyfriend (who does not want her to have an abortion) as pro-life, Ms. Danzeisen replied, "The Birds & Bees Project uses the term anti-choice - not pro-life." So much for being non-biased!
Amanda also claimed that The Birds & Bees Project was not political. Students, however, are asked to discuss the following:"Why do you think people protest outside of abortion clinics? Do people protest other surgical procedures that are legal? Do you think it should be legal to protest outside of abortion clinics or do you think this is a form of harassment?"
Students are also told "There is no scientific evidence for the so-called "post-abortion trauma syndrome," and "The most common feelings women report after having an abortion are relief and happiness."
Youth ages 12 and up are taught the ABC plan for sex education. "A" stands for abstinence. Teachers, however, are instructed, "Tell your students that 99.9% of the population will stop practicing abstinence at some point in their lives." A sexual health back-up plan is the next step for students. The letter "B" stands for birth control and also Plan B - the brand mane for emergency contraception. The letter "C" stands for choice.
The Birds & Bees Project claims to "educate more than 8,000 young people in the Twin Cities metro area each year." After reviewing the guide, I believe the best choice parents can make is to pull their kids out of these classes! Find out what your child is learning in sex education this year. Ask your school district to reject The Birds & Bees Project and the "Educator's Guide to Reproductive Health."
Tuesday, March 6, 2007
So far the local press has covered only half of OutFront's campaign for same-sex marriage via incremental, legislative steps. In today's Pioneer Press, Jason Hoppin focused on one bill - allowing local municipalities the option to offer benefits - while ignoring the second, which mandates that the state redefine marriage (domestic partnership) and allow benefits to those persons. How can the reader discern the overall plan when they only get half the story?
T. Budig, EMC capitol reporter repeats OutFront's talking point - "local control" - yet ignores the second bills state-wide mandate.
To his credit, Budig reports that Ann DeGroot, president of OutFront, admits there is no secret that the legislation is part on an attempt to achieve equal (same-sex marriage) rights for gays. But he fails to discuss OutFront's Summary of Legislative Proposals that lists nine objectives for the 2007 session.
I encourage Hoppin and Budig to report the whole story, not just selected increments.
Monday, March 5, 2007
OutFront begs the question whether it's the "Minnesota way" to draw attention to their Summary of Legislative Proposals. Apparently, "fair minded common sense" is keeping the voter clueless while legislators mandate state government to redefine marriage (domestic partnership) as two persons of the same-sex.
Would it be "fair minded" to question if their proposals pass, will OutFront demand more?
After the "no compromise" strategies in CT, VT and New Jersey, "common sense" says, no.
Friday, March 2, 2007
According to the New York Daily news, the same day New Jersey legalized civil unions, Garden State Equality Chairman Steven Goldstein said "Civil unions are not marriage," and outlined a plan to legalize gay marriage in two years.
This same, no compromise, incremental strategy is well underway in Minnesota. In one week, OutFront Minnesota introduced two bills that escalated their benefits campaign from a local government option, to a statewide mandate that would also redefine family, (domestic partner) to include an adult of the same sex.
This may be one small, "incremental step" for OutFront, but it's a huge leap for the state of Minnesota.
Call your representatives and tell them you don't want to redefine family in Minnesota.