October 30, 2009

Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo did What?


Thanks Jake and Joe for bringing this to my attention.
So he uses public resources to send out a media advisory on his office letterhead to promote a continuing education event? But why? So why does Kentucky allow Doctors to listen to politicians to satisfy their continuing education requirement?

What? Oh, $200 a plate- tell me this isn't what it looks like.
Fortunately, Kentucky has the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure that regulates Kentucky Doctors and their continuing education. Wonder how long it's going to take before they receive a grievance...oh damn, it requires a notary. Answer: Monday, November 2, 2009.

For the record, I'm not in the camp of any of these 4 guys- and have been critical of them all. I have to endure REAL continuing education just to keep a real estate broker's license, so I'll be damn if Doctor's get to use it as campaign event.

11.02.09, 10:52 AM Update
I personally don't have time to file this grievance, but if anyone out there is outraged and can take a moment, that would be great.


Celebrity spotting at 3rd St Cafe!


On my way to class I caught a glimpse of those fighting for us all- easy to spot thanks to their shirts. I guess even single payer activists need to eat. Let's hear it for the 24-hour set-in at Humana's Louisville Headquarters!

October 29, 2009

Humana Demonstrator Sit-in for Single Payer

Another great Jim Pence video from Hillybilly Report:

I like that they are getting used to being closed at least.
Photo by Curtis Morrison
Louisville had some local media covering the event:
Sit In at Humana Downtown Today on PageOneKentucky
Protesters Picket Humana HQ in Louisville on Louisville Mojo
Blog coverage from Reclaiming Medusa.
WFPL coverage.
Here's a link to FOX 41's Video Coverage.

Here's a link to the extensive WAVE 3 Coverage, where Humana is spinning it like they want the same thing. Riiiight.

Here's some information about what's going on in there from the facebook event page for the set-in:
_______________________________________
Kentuckians for Single Payer Healthcare

Kentucky and Indiana single payer activists have decided to participate in the national campaign of "Patients Not Profit" sit-ins at insurance company offices to demand an end to a system that profits by denying people care. We want the real "public option": Medicare for All, a single payer plan that cuts out the profit and puts patients first.

This campaign began in New York City on September 29th with 17 arrests at a peaceful sit in at Aetna and continued in Chicago at Cigna on October 8th. On October 15th the campaign expanded to 9 more cities that included Portland, Oregon; Phoenix, Arizona; and West Palm Beach, Florida. Nationally, 751 people have signed up to participate in the sit ins and the number grows each day. There is further information about this exciting campaign at http://mobilizeforhealthcare.org/.

The campaign will continue to organize actions in as many cities as possible. It's time to cut out the profit and put patients first with Expanded and Improved Medicare for All. The latest news stories of the campaign can be found at http://www.healthcare-now.org/over-54-arrested-in-nine-single-payer-actions/.
If you wish to make a contribution to support the campaign, please make the check out to PNHP-KY and mail it to: Kentuckians for Single Payer Health Care, c/o Nurses Professional Organization, 1169 Eastern Parkway #2218, Louisville KY 40217.

Kay Tillow, Coordinator, Kentuckians for Single Payer Healthcare, www.kyhealthcare.org, nursenpo@aol.com

______________________________
Statement of Dr. Garrett Adams

History clearly teaches that pivotal advances for social justice in American society were initiated by courageous actions by committed citizens. Independence from Great Britain, abolition of slavery, women’s suffrage and civil rights all began with revolutionary actions expressing citizen outrage at the status quo. We are at this moment again. Let us now stand up for all of our fellow citizens who suffer and have suffered from injustice inflicted by a cruel health care system that values financial gain for a few over the welfare of all. Physicians for a National Health Program-Kentucky is proud to join our fellow citizens in protest against this system and to advocate for transformational change for non-profit national health insurance. Please join us. We need your support in any way possible, come and demonstrate with us; contribute financially; lend your voice.
Garrett Adams, MD, MPH
Coordinator, Physicians for a National Health Program-Kentucky
October 17, 2009

Update: 6:49PM
Shucks! I didn't make it inside -they locked the doors at 6PM. Fortunately there's a Courier-Journal photographer inside so we can expect to see some coverage on tomorrow's front page, I'd reckon. The sit-in protesters are still going strong. However they are being denied access to restrooms, so how long they can last without facilities is a problem.

And here's a video from some guys called The BRW Show:

Waterfront Parkplace-AUCTION: BUYER BEWARE!


I've been a Realtor since Daniel Boone trained me, so let me share with you a pet peeve I have. Wealthy developers hiring fancy people to misrepresent things.

In today's Courier-Journal article, it said that condos have sold for $350,000 to $2.4million, There's an implication they have never sold for less and that's simply misleading.If that information was provided by the developer, and not the PVA, then it is fraud. Only took me a few minutes on PVA website to determine unit 805, with 1,325 sq ft, sold for $335,030 on 06/04/2004.

But what would we expect? The developer's website includes this quote "Waterfront Park Place is nearly sold-out with few units remaining." Um, 15/77...is 19% of the units remaining. Not quite the same thing as "a few." Aren't these the same people that brought us the ad on the back of Business First that said "mission accomplished" or something like that 5-6 years ago? I'm putting this out there for the Realtor community- maybe people don't buy our products because they don't trust us when we mislead them.

Photo by Lizzie Morrison.

October 27, 2009

Share your feelings on DOMA with the KFA, or with Someone


Have you wondered why the Kentucky Fairness Alliance (KFA) is quiet when it comes to asking Congressman Yarmuth to support the Respect Marriage Act (HR 3567)?

Well, here's the skinny...
In response to my proposal that we approach the Congressman as a statewide coalition respecting what he's done for us, but relaying we need his continued support in co-sponsoring the Respect Marriage Act, KFA responded to me this morning not with an argument on why they can't, but ignoring my request altogether and telling me what we should be focused on instead:

"...I am not ready to apply additional pressure on our friend John Yarmuth. I would rather suggest that we focus on Kentucky sate LGBT issues...The second area Kentucky LGBT residents could help advance is local fairness bills..." - Michael Handley

I just asked him to sign a letter, I didn't ask him to sign it in blood, or to deliver it to Washington himself. How much energy would that take anyway? I went to the KFA website to find out more about the Kentucky issues and I see a video about Yves St Laurent, and a plea for their upcoming "Out and About" Fundraiser. Deliver me. What's so wrong about letting Yarmuth know we want DOMA repealed? Do they even want DOMA repealed? Am I out on a limb here with this whole concept of "equality?"I'm still waiting to hear back from other "social justice" organizations to see where they stand, I'll let you know when I do.

In the meantime, help me out- email KFA and let them know that compromised equality is no longer in the cards. It's time for those that are advocating us to be uncompromising in standing up for all our LGBT-rights.

Kentucky Fairness Alliance: info@kentuckyfairness.org

While your at it, let John Yarmuth know where you stand.

Or email me and tell me why I'm wrong:
curtster3@yahoo.com

Or email all your friends and tell them why I'm wrong. Or comment below. Just do something. Stand up for what you believe in. Always. Thanks! :P

October 22, 2009

Matthew Shepard Act Passes!

After what seems forever, 10 years right? God bless Judy Shepard. Having seen the Laramie Project Revisited recently at Actor's Theater, and Loving it- btw, I've been thinking a lot about hate crimes legislation and have decided to put my little story out there:

When I was 20 (and not out of the closet to myself even)- a bunch of thugs that thought I was gay, called in a fake pizza order to a vacant house in Jeffersonville: 2401 Graves Court, I think was the address. Two extravaganzas, $21.83 was the total I think.

Anyway, when I went to deliver it, I got out of the car, they beat the hell out of me with a baseball bat while yelling "Take that Fag!" and then they left me for dead. Beside the head injury, they had broke the wrist that I held over my head to protect it. After about 20 minutes I crawled back into my stick-shift Hyundai and drove back to the store with the left arm because that wrist wasn't broken. They hadn't take my money or even the pizzas. This was not a robbery, it was a hate crime.

Mom drove to town to comfort me that night, I can't remember if anyone was with her or not, but I think she took me from the hospital to the Sheriff's office where fortunately, our family friend John Starks took the report. He was very comforting. I can't tell you how grateful I was to Mom & and Officer Starks for being there for me that night.

If the perpetrators had been apprehended, they weren't, they would have only been charged with class B felony assault charges- I doubt they'd even got more than a week in jail.

So yes, I am pleased about this Act passing. If you don't like this law, that is your right just understand that it's one I'm more sensitive about than others

October 21, 2009

Message to Congressman John Yarmuth


You signed on to co-sponsor the Military Readiness Enhancement Act of 2009 back in June but I just now noticed. This is the act that will repeal DADT, when it someday gets out of House Subcommittee on Military Personnel. Can we pray for Spring 2010?

THANK YOU JOHN YARMUTH!

PEEPS!- Join me in contacting him, to express our gratitude for him "being on the right side of history" (to steal a quote from Phoenix that I steal all the time)!

October 19, 2009

My Message to Congressman Steve King (R-Iowa)

You are right in your letter to President Obama demanding the removal of Kevin Jennings when you say "Children presume the adults who educate them are approved by the larger society and their parents."

Let me take you back to 1983- 7th Grade at River Valley Middle School...I wasn't even aware I was gay, My classmates suspected I was though, maybe I was effeminate. I had three sisters so it would have been a struggle not to have been. My teachers systematically ignored, and often even encouraged, my marginalization. I guess they wanted to be popular with their students. Picking on the gay kid was fast-tracking that goal.

One day after after swimming class, I was attacked in the locker room and shoved in a trash can. Not by one or two students, but by many. And the teacher did nothing. My mom went to the school and talked to the principal after school that day. Still nothing. How do you think that felt? For me, it felt like I was less than.
I spent the majority of that year with suicidal thoughts. That's been nearly 30 years ago yet the memory still torments me.

You're right. Children do presume their teachers are approved by society.
That's the point, don't you get it? What happened to me is still happening to my cousins, nieces, nephews and neighbors. Kevin Jennings has spent much of his career trying to put an end to it. How dare you, Mr. King. How dare you.

National Equality March Speech Montage and Call to Action

Here's the best of the best of the speeches during the rally following the National Equality March in a video made by Sean Chapin:



Note how Cynthia Nixon commends her Rep. Jerry Nadler for introducing the Respect Marriage Act to Repeal DoMA. The Act currently has over 100 co-sponsors, but not Rep. John Yarmuth! Here's your call to action!

Will you let Rep. Yarmuth know that you would like him to support the Respect Marriage Act to Repeal DoMA? It only takes a minute to let him know you expect his support!

October 18, 2009

Kentucky's Geoff Davis in league with Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa)?

If you hadn't heard, Rep. King wrote a letter in which he got 53 signatures from House Republicans that says that Kevin Jennings should be removed from his post in the Department of Education because he is...promoting the homosexual agenda?

WTF! He has done work on making sure that today's kids and future kids don't get bullied at school for being gay, and that "undermines traditional American values?"

Here's the full skinny on gaypolitics.com


On that list, here's a link, none other than Kentucky's own Republican Representative Geoff Davis. Unfortunately for Davis, he has a formidable election challenger coming up in Veteran John Waltz. Get out your checkbooks folks, because it's time to send homophobic Geoff Davis home.


And Rep. King, you are a delusional if you think you are going to get your coveted 4th term, too. So step right up, who is a gay-friendly Republican or Democrat in Western Iowa that we gays can endow with our nearly unlimited treasure?

10.19.09 Update to reflect Nathan's comment- there is a primary challenger, and I think he's HOT!: Check out Mike Denklau

October 16, 2009

Bank of America still uses "Sexual Preference"- WTF?

Within a week of the National Equality March, on October 16, 2009- I just opened a work-related email from Bank of America that used the term "sexual preference". The intent of the email was to their valuation suppliers to comply with the Fair Housing Act (i.e. So their appraisals don't say a neighborhood is white, or Jewish for example). I have no problem with their intent. However, the email was written by someone that still thinks sexual preference is an acceptable term. Why would this person have access to a communication device within a banking institution? Is their diversity training just a sham?

If you're a big bank using TARP funds, and doing business outside of Iran, the term is "sexual orientation." And you claim to embrace minorities. Fail.


Here's a clip from the email from "bpohelp@bankofamerica.com":
"...References to race, gender, economic status, sexual preferences, or religion must be avoided. Avoid generic and unsupported derogatory comments with respect to the home, neighborhood, or residents. Any such language will result in immediate failure of the BPO..." (Bold mine)



Oh these morons. They just wrote me back, not with an apology, but with a clarification that they meant to have used both terms... (The accepted one, and the hater one.)

‘Energy and enthusiasm'


My Letter to the Courier-Journal is in today's paper and I stand by what I wrote-even if it does sound like I'm inciting a revolution.

When it comes to us getting closer to Equality in Kentucky, we face greater challenges than the rest of the country. So we can't afford complacency. Join me in being involved. In Louisville, we're lucky enough to have the Fairness Campaign, which is a true grassroots organization, not like the HRC. If you haven't checked out their site lately- check it out and click on Take Action, you'll see that sure you could give money, but there's 3 other ways to be involved that don't cost a dime and are just as vital for us to really win this thing.

So today's call to action, take 1 minute to tell John Yarmuth to support the Respect Marriage Act.
And DON'T FORGET to communicate to your state legislators as we get closer to the Spring Session about passing a Statewide Fairness Amendment and Repealing the Marriage Amendment!
See you at the next protest.

October 11, 2009

Fairness Campaign organizes Bustrip to National Equality March

Louisville's Fairness Campaign has sent nearly 50 delegates to Sunday's National Equality March in Washington, D.C. this weekend, including me. With over 50 events going on this weekend, it's hard to cover them all. However, it's very clear that many gay rights leaders are losing their patience with President Obama on repealing D.A.D.T. and D.o.M.A.
Here's a video of David Mixner from Saturday at the D.A.D.T. Memorial and Protest the Congressional Cemetary. Also some other pictures from Saturday!











October 7, 2009

King Unknowingly Violates more Campaign Finance Law


I've been waiting with baited breath to see how much Metro Councilman and mayoral candidate Jim King has been paying what Joe Gerth called "no fewer than six political consultants as co-hosts of the event."

Behold my surprise when the quarterly reports go up online on KREF's site WITHOUT his itemized disbursements.
See, Mr. King "unknowingly" took advantage of the fact that if the report isn't filed online then the disbursements wouldn't be posted online either. The report is squeaky clean, with only a few misspellings per Page One,

Unfortunately, it looks like King held off on paying the majority of his consultants until after the deadline. However, when we actually look at the only 2 pages of disbursements that he did file (posted below) to itemize his $9,454.89 in disbursements- we see A PROBLEM. Surely King knew that disbursements over $25 must be itemized, right? It's obvious that's not what was done. See the little arrow on top of the page below- that's not mine-no, no. That's KREF's. They want to know why $1250 to Former Fletcher Aide Denise Bentley is just listed as "Consulting and Events" and those actual expenses are not itemized at all. So they will be sending this report back to King to amend to include the itemization. Oh that's right, King must have filed this "unknowingly."


Finally, as a long-time volunteer for the Louisville AIDS Walk, I personally would rather see the $996 budget King spent on fans and bottled water to be redirected to actually benefit the charity. It's not, after all, the Jim King for Mayor Walk.

October 3, 2009

Attorney General Jack Conway stands up to Crime!


Kudo's to Attorney General Jack Conway in appointing a special prosecutor to study the King complaint. Here's the skinny in the CJ:

http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009910020367


And for all those people out there that hesitate before writing emails to government officials letting them know what's important to you...let me share a little bity email I sent last week. :)

October 1, 2009

John Yarmuth...the Respect for Marriage Act...Are you with us?



For my gentle readers that are out of the loop, the Respect Marriage Act (H.R. 3567)
will repeal the 1996 D.o.M.A. (Defense of Marriage Act) & go one huge step towards making us gays- actual citizens of the first class. To my knowledge it has 91 co-sponsors in the House so far.

Remember back in January of this year, I joined a couple hundred people at Louisville's Douglass Loop specifically asking Representative John Yarmuth to introduce this bill himself (See Image). I think the rally was called "Yarmuth: Repeal DoMA!!"
Anyway, he didn't - Rep. Jerry Nadler did. I have got past that.
But now, he's still not even pledged his support by co-sponsoring it? WTF?

Surely I'm not the only one that's telling him we want this passed, but in case you haven't expressed your interest in his support, you can contact him on the action site: repealdomanow.org.

Also, You don't have to be gay to support civil rights. If you're straight, and you're still standing up for people that aren't like you, let me just say that your support is very affirming. Thank you. If you ever need me to have your back- let me know. (Unless you want a tunnel under your house, or a unicorn- something silly like that- cause I can't actually do magic.)