H.R. 3016, passed by the House last month, would cut the monthly Basic Allowance for Housing (or BAH) for children who've inherited their parents' Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits -- by hundreds or even thousands of dollars a month! -- and now S. 425 would not only make that same cut, but would lengthen our soldiers' minimum term of service before they can pass on benefits to their children in the first place (which, yes, is also a benefit cut), and then cut the cost-of-living increase to veterans' housing benefits by one percent every year over the next five years. Remember when our politicians told us that when we opposed the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and Libya and Syria, we were "against the troops"? Nickel-and-diming our soldiers after they've served their country is appalling enough, but there should be a special level of Hell for politicians who would do that to the soldiers who did their best for the criminally insane morons who sent them to the Middle East in the first place. IAVA helps you tell Congress to stop playing budget-hawk with our soldiers.
Meanwhile, Jeremy Malone, of Huntsville, AL, has started a petition on Change.org which helps you tell the Obama Administration to pardon his son, Edwin Walter Rubis, who has served 18 years of a 40-year sentence for pot possession. Even if this wasn't Mr. Rubis's first offense, forty freaking years for drug possession? I would call that criminally insane. The story of Mr. Rubis's conviction is extraordinarily sad -- his lawyer told him to rat out other drug users, but Mr. Rubis apparently couldn't do that, because not every drug user knows every other drug user, and was thus punished for his "reticence" with a draconian sentence -- but the story of how he's used his time in jail, at least, is rather less so. Still, you do have to wonder about a society that would rather punish drug addiction than try to change it. I think most Americans are tired of being "tough on crime," but it's not enough to presume the existence of an arc of history bending toward justice -- we still have to bend it.
Finally, the Obama Administration's Department of Labor has decided to continue to take public comments on the Department's plan mandating paid sick leave days for employees of federal contractors -- up to seven annually, for some 800,000 workers -- and Moms Rising helps you leave a comment supporting paid sick leave, if you haven't already. We already know the reasons why paid sick leave is a good thing: workers won't go to work sick and then make their co-workers sick as often; workers will be able to better care for sick children; and workers trying to escape domestic abuse situations will be able to take time off from work to take care of that. It isn't just workers who think paid sick leave is a good idea -- a lot of corporate executives see it, too. But if Republicans want to continue ignoring not only the will of the people but the will of corporate executives, then I would like to encourage you to call their anti-paid sick leave stance objectively pro-domestic abuse. Or objectively pro-sick child. I'm well past done fighting intransigence with sweet reason.