Lake Highlands High School (TX) valedictorian replaces her school-approved graduation speech with one slamming Texas's new anti-abortion law. And Paxton Smith thus reminds us that the only alternative to legal abortion is the state turning women into breeders. Her immediate future, unfortunately, consists of death threats from cowards who can't do anything about the problems in their own lives, brainless mockery from right-wing punditoids, and a conspicuous silence from people who should know better. If she asked me for advice, I'd say she should just remember that her opponents are wrong, and that they will prove their wrong with their words and deeds. It's not always easy to remember, but it can be quite sustaining in times of doubt.
Alice Speri at The Intercept describes how Charlotte, NC police trapped peaceful protestors and then tear-gassed them during the George Floyd protests a year ago. Oh, and if you tried to break through the trap, you got the pepper bullet treatment, and if you stayed put, you also got the pepper bullet treatment. Apparently they call this "kettling," "corralling," or "bottlenecking," and my guess is nobody saw reports about this on Fox News -- not when they Fox can just show the same footage of the same violence over and over again without any context and without even having anything to do with whatever perceived outrage the Fox News prettyheads are screaming about that day.
Gov. Steve Sisolak (D-NV) says he'll sign a "public option" health care bill, but the bill in question, SB 420, doesn't really offer good Nevadans a "public" health care option so much as it offers yet another layer of privatized health care that'll supposedly offer comparable plans for a little less money, and that sure as hell ain't getting us any closer to Medicare for All. My 30-years-younger self might have said that at least the politicians know what people really want and are at least selling their swill accordingly, but really, there's more to the world than just words.
When I hear that folks watching the "audit" of Maricopa County (AZ) ballots find that the folks doing the audit are doing a lot of things wrong, all I can say is of course they are, because the whole point of this clown car "audit" is to come up with a different result than the state did -- a result the state came up with three times, I feel compelled to add -- so that Republicans can say AHA!, and the easiest way to come up with a different result is to screw up. And since most folks won't easily parse all the inside-baseball about blue pens and ballot security, they could get away with it, just as they've been getting away with deliberately crashing-and-burning our government so they can then say see? Government doesn't work!
Ho hum, now Rep. John Katko (R-NY) wants $50 billion more in assistance for restaurants after voting against the restaurant assistance offered by the American Rescue Plan. My guess is he'll find a reason not to vote for that, too. Those nasty Democrats wouldn't talk to us, he'll say again, in a world where no one should be talking to Republicans. Actually, his list of excuses for not voting for the American Rescue Plan (I count five in this article) is pretty wide-ranging, making it more likely he's just full of soup. I don't care if he's supposedly one of the "good ones" -- for his hypocrisy, he deserves defeat.
Finally, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D?-AZ) says she still doesn't support filibuster reform or repeal, opining thusly: "The reality is that when you have a system that is not working effectively — and I would think that most would agree that the Senate is not a particularly well-oiled machine, right? The way to fix that is to fix your behavior, not to eliminate the rules or change the rules, but to change the behavior." Actually, that's utter horsedoodle. When you have a "system" that doesn't work, you change the system -- you certainly don't keep haranguing the workers who have to work within the system about their "behavior." Only bad bosses do that, which makes me wonder how her staff feels about working for her. Besides which, all the "behavior" that actually does need changing comes from Republicans, and you just know she didn't mean they had to change their behavior.