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Montclair, NJ

War on Christmas - Montclair, NJ

There is no war on Christmas; it is a complete reversal of the actualities of the situation concocted by the sintered brains and coked-up imaginations of Faux News reporters with far too much time on their hands. Christmas, and Christianity, pervade this civilization to a degree that one can easily lose sight of the fact that it is, after all, a secular society: legally, socially and morally. I, for one, have had just about enough of Christlemews' (partisans of the Abrahamic faiths: Christians, Muslims and Jews) attempts to hijack civil society and make it the handmaiden of their oppressive, misogynistic, life-denying, homophobic, racist, child-raping, Earth-destroying, warmongering philosophies. So, in summary: happy Festivus! (Bill Courson, Montclair NJ USA)  (Dec 8, 2012 | post #2)

Berea, KY

Proposed Berea Fairness Ordinance

I am the person who wrote the letter you refer to. Are you ":well educated" enough to know what an "ad hominem" attack is? I hope so, because you have just made one. You have no idea, nor can you have any idea, of whether or not I have suffered unfairness or have experienced discrimination. Yes, I like to think that I am well educated, am from New Jersey and am a recent "transplant " to Berea: I plead guilty on all counts, including that of practicing holistic medicine and of beleiving that crystals have regenerative effects. I appreciatre your criticism on this last point, because clearly you have made an intensive study of that which you take me to task for! Be all that as it may. I at least have the fortitude to put my correct name on my postings in this forum. Unlke you, who to all appearances are a coward.  (Jun 14, 2011 | post #110)

Berea, KY

Who is the most hated nobody in Berea?

Oh, let me guess: a gay or lesbian, Moslem, Barrack Obama supporter who cheers for the University of Tennessee?  (May 14, 2011 | post #31)

Berea, KY

Committee to consider ordinance

It's good to hear that Berea - with its heritage of striving for equality and social justice - is moving this effort forward. Here are some fact's about America's LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered) community (source: The Williams Institute, UCLA)that readers may find interesting: 1. 9 million LGBT people live in the U.S., 3.8 % of the adult population. 2. LGBT people are racially, ethnically, and geographically diverse: 1 in 4 are people of color and same-sex couples have identified themselves on the Census in 99% of U.S. counties. 3. A substantial percentage of LGBT people are raising children: 1 in 5 same-sex couples and 6% of children in foster care are being raised by LGB people. 4. LGBT people are serving in the Armed Forces: 71,000 are currently serving, and there are over 1 million LGBT veterans in the U.S. 5. 70,000 same-sex couples have gotten married in the U.S.; another 90,000 have entered into civil unions and domestic partnerships. 6. The annual divorce rate for same-sex couples and different-sex married couples is similar — about 2%. 7. LGBT people are not more affluent than the general population. Gay men earn 10% to 23% less, on average, than heterosexual men. Children of same-sex couples are twice as likely to live in poverty. 8. Rates of hate crimes and employment discrimination against LGBT people are similar to or higher than for other protected groups. Until UCLA's Williams Institute, no one analyzed this data on a per capita basis, taking into account the smaller size of the LGBT population. 9. "Don't ask, don't tell" has cost taxpayers over $500 million since it started being enforced in 1994. 10. If all 50 states and the federal government recognized marriage for same-sex couples, the federal budget would benefit by over $1 billion each year.  (Apr 9, 2011 | post #2)

Lexington, KY

Berea Fairness Ordinance (Letter to the Editor, The Berea...

Berea, Kentucky April 4, 2011 Dear Friend, Tomorrow, Tuesday April 5th, the Berea (Ky.) City Council will hear public comment on and consider the enactment of a Fairness Ordinance which would prohibit discrimination within the city on the basis of sexual orientation in the areas of employment, housing and public accommodations. A hearing on this matter was held at a previous Berea City Council meeting (on March 15th), at which time each and every public comment was opposed to the enactment of such an ordinance; individuals testifying were for the most part representing religious institutions and points-of-view, and reference was repeatedly made describing homosexuality as an "abomination, " a "satanic deception," and "a practice contrary to God's will." I am writing to ask that you please attend tomorrow's Berea City Council meeting and let your voice be heard among the voices of fairness, reason and progress - which are Berea's heritage - speaking up and speaking out for your neighbors. Please let yourself be heard! The Council meets at 6:30 pm (on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month) on the 1st floor of the Police and Municipal Building, 314 Chestnut street, Berea, KY. The City Council welcomes public comment. If you wish to hand out a prepared statement to Council, you may give the City Clerk copies of the handout to be passed out when it is your turn to speak. If you wish to address Council on an item that is on the agenda, wait until that item is discussed and then offer comment when the Mayor asks if there is anyone in the audience wishing to speak to Council on this matter. Thank you for your attention and for your help!  (Apr 4, 2011 | post #2)

Berea, KY

Proposed Berea Fairness Ordinance

Berea, Kentucky April 4, 2011 Dear Friend, Tomorrow, Tuesday April 5th, the Berea (Ky.) City Council will hear public comment on and consider the enactment of a Fairness Ordinance which would prohibit discrimination within the city on the basis of sexual orientation in the areas of employment, housing and public accommodations. A hearing on this matter was held at a previous Berea City Council meeting (on March 15th), at which time each and every public comment was opposed to the enactment of such an ordinance; individuals testifying were for the most part representing religious institutions and points-of-view, and reference was repeatedly made describing homosexuality as an "abomination, " a "satanic deception," and "a practice contrary to God's will." I am writing to ask that you please attend tomorrow's Berea City Council meeting and let your voice be heard among the voices of fairness, reason and progress - which are Berea's heritage - speaking up and speaking out for your neighbors. Please let yourself be heard! The Council meets at 6:30 pm (on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month) on the 1st floor of the Police and Municipal Building, 314 Chestnut street, Berea, KY. The City Council welcomes public comment. If you wish to hand out a prepared statement to Council, you may give the City Clerk copies of the handout to be passed out when it is your turn to speak. If you wish to address Council on an item that is on the agenda, wait until that item is discussed and then offer comment when the Mayor asks if there is anyone in the audience wishing to speak to Council on this matter. Thank you for your attention and for your help! Sincerely, Bill Courson  (Apr 4, 2011 | post #2)

Lexington, KY

Berea Fairness Ordinance (Letter to the Editor, The Berea...

Via E-mail: [email protected] tream.net April 3, 2011 Letters to the Editor The Berea Citizen Post Office Box 207 Berea, KY 40403 RE: Proposed Fairness Ordinance (Letter word count: 489) Dear Editor: While it was very disheartening for me to see and hear some of the public comments made before the Berea City Council on the matter of the proposed fairness ordinance at its March 15th meeting, it is very encouraging for me to read in the Citizen of the great support for the ordinance in many quarters. As a gay man and a lifelong native of New Jersey, who has just (this past August) retired to Berea, I feel the need to share some observations. In the first place, nowhere in the Berea City Charter, in the Constitution of Kentucky nor in the federal Constitution do I see reference made to the Bible nor to the Christian religion's interpretations of it as the basis for the formulation of public policy. Were it so, perhaps the present discussions before the Council would concern not discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but the legality of working on Sundays, of blood transfusions, of the eating of pork, of multiracial families living together or of interracial marriage, of blasphemy or of the use of anesthetics in childbirth. From a literalist perspective, the Bible could be (and has been) interpreted in such a fashion as to be seen forbidding all of these, and much more in the way of practices that have become so enmeshed in everyday life as to have lost their moral content. If you do not approve of homosexuality, then practice heterosexuality or remain celibate. If you believe your God desires you to avoid eating certain foods, then by all means avoid eating them. But do not try to force your personal sectarian agenda nor your interpretation of Scripture down my and others' unwilling throats by reserving to yourself the right to discriminate against me unless I remain “in the closet” and pay tribute to your religious sentiments as paramount and acknowledge their supremacy in the civil arena. Secondly, having been born, raised and educated as a Christian, I deeply resent the demonstrably erroneous notion that there is a singular, monolithic Christian interpretation of the Bible's stance (or lack of a stance) on homosexuality. There is far more persuasive linguistic and historical evidence to support the Bible's condemnations as being directed against ritualized idolatry expressed in the form of promiscuous homosexual contact, homosexual incest and homosexual prostitution than toward the homosexual orientation itself or as expressed in a faithful, monogamous union. These tortured Scriptural verses – well known to gay people as “texts of terror” - have been used for centuries to marginalize gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people and to deny them their God-given equality, human rights and fundamental freedoms. For a self-identified follower of Jesus of Nazareth to promote discrimination, to call for the curtailing of the rights of others whose lifestyle he takes exception to, is more than a shame. It is a sin. And in those calls to hate, to judge, to deprive and to condemn, the Savior is crucified afresh. Sincerely, Bill Courson  (Apr 4, 2011 | post #1)

Richmond, KY

Pharmacies in Richmond?

Anybody here have any recommendations about pharmacies in Richmond (downtown, within walking distance of main street)? I've got a fairly complex set of prescriptions, and would liek to know what folks think is the most professional, competent pharmacist locally. Thanks!  (Feb 2, 2011 | post #1)

Berea, KY

Woman's head stepped on by Rand Paul supporters

If you think MoveOn.org attracts "geeks" you should have a peek at Berea College's Young Republicans! Praise the Lord and pass the Clearasil! Liberalism Forever: No Death Penalty! Go Gay Marriage Equality! Access to Health Care for All!  (Jan 17, 2011 | post #7985)

Berea, KY

Coven of the Mystic Stone

Oh, by the way: some of y'all need to get yourselves a bigger god.  (Jan 17, 2011 | post #44)

Berea, KY

Coven of the Mystic Stone

Thank you, Colonel! But that's really only when I have my "winter coat!"  (Jan 17, 2011 | post #43)

Q & A with wacourson

Headline:

The highest virtue: Compassion

Hometown:

Montclair, New Jersey USA

Neighborhood:

Claremont Avenue

Local Favorites:

My Blue Suede Shoes; Montclair Book Center; Spice II Thai Restaurant; Starseed Yoga Center

I Belong To:

Garden State Eqaulity; Gay/Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation; Church of Spiritual Humanism (Ordained Minister); Mensa International

When I'm Not on Topix:

I'm on Facebook, at work, or stirring up a commotion!

Read My Forum Posts Because:

They're interesting, in my humble opinion.

I'm Listening To:

Amy Goodman on "Democracy Now"

Read This Book:

Jitterbug Perfume, by Tom Robbins

Favorite Things:

Jesus of Nazareth, Shakyamuni Buddha, Giordano Bruno, Lon Milo DuQuette, Italian, Greek or Asian food, pets (esp. dogs)

On My Mind:

The essential "wrongness" of capital punishment

Blog / Website / Homepage:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/pdp/profile/A6O1Y10HEEMME

I Believe In:

consorting with the wise, showing compassion for the unwise, and giving kindness toward all creatures.