Monday, March 06, 2006
More Internationals Intrigue. Birthdays and Anniversaries. Dark Ages, Here We Come...
At Work and Play with the Internationals. Birthdays and Anniversaries.
I'm back after a busy latter half of the previous week spent with the Internationals from work, and a busier weekend of birthday and anniversary parties. Jim and Mark are on their way back to Ireland. There was no way they'd miss Saint Patrick's Day at home. And Julie from Australia, who leaves for home tomorrow, seems to have been able to cope with the cold weather and the challenge of driving on the "wrong" side of the road, with the steering wheel on the "wrong" side of the car. I can attest that it takes more than a bit of concentration to handle such a paradigm shift, having done the same last year in Sydney and previously on trips to Ireland and Barbados.
Julie, however, presented a different difficulty with her sense of direction. She claims that the path of the Sun, which looks as if it moves from left to right in the Northern Hemisphere, has her all messed up. The Sun looks as if it moves in the opposite manner in the Southern Hemisphere, so she automatically assumes that, looking in the direction of the Sun, that East is to her right rather than her left. I was floored by this. I spent three weeks in Australia last year, and had no such difficulty, but then again, I am a stargazer, so I may be a bit more accustomed to looking at the sky to find orient myself than Julie is. Still, I'll have to consult some colleagues who have spent time in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa to see if they too have been affected by this phenomenon.
On the birthday front, my brother-in-law celebrated his 35th a mere two days before his and my sister's three-year wedding anniversary. My other sister is also married (for 12 years). I, on the other hand, remain single. So ladies, just think: If you like what you read on this blog, consider it to be just the tip of the iceberg! I'm waiting...
Dark Ages, Here We Come...
Anyway, on to the news. The governor of South Dakota has helped to hasten America's retreat to the Dark Ages by signing a hideous bill that would make illegal any abortions performed that are done so without the health of the mother at stake. Yahoo News AP wire excerpt:
PIERRE, S.D. - Gov. Mike Rounds signed legislation Monday that would ban most abortions in South Dakota, a law he acknowledged would be tied up in court for years while the state challenges the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion.
The bill would make it a crime for doctors to perform an abortion unless the procedure was necessary to save the woman's life. It would make no exception for cases of rape or incest.
The governor issued a written statement saying he expected a lengthy legal battle over the law, which, he said, would not take effect unless the U.S. Supreme Court upheld it.
"In the history of the world, the true test of a civilization is how well people treat the most vulnerable and most helpless in their society. The sponsors and supporters of this bill believe that abortion is wrong because unborn children are the most vulnerable and most helpless persons in our society. I agree with them," Rounds said in the statement.
Read the bold type in the second paragraph of the excerpt. Then read the last paragraph again, and try to believe that both situations can exist simultaneously. Apparently Governor Rounds believes that victims of rape or incest do not qualify as part of "the most vulnerable and most helpless in their society". Does it advance the ideals of an advanced society to make women bear children conceived through acts of violence? How civilized are we to make a women attacked by male relatives bear these children? I'm lost here. Does an unborn child's right to life trump the circumstances of its having been conceived?
The governor declined all media requests for interviews Monday.
The Legislature passed the bill last month after supporters argued that the recent appointment of conservative justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito have made the U.S. Supreme Court more likely to overturn Roe v. Wade.
Abortion opponents already are offering money to help the state pay legal bills for the anticipated court challenge, Rounds has said. Lawmakers said an anonymous donor has pledged $1 million to defend the ban, and the Legislature set up a special account to accept donations for legal fees.
Some other states are considering similar bans on abortion.
Under the new law, doctors could get up to five years in prison for performing an illegal abortion.
Well, this is the America that the Bush crowd wants, and it looks like it is going to become a sick reality unless the Democrats can grow some spine and gain some seats back in the upcoming mid-term elections. Sadly, with the additions of Justices Roberts and Alito, it is too late to do anything about the Supreme Court, but the fewer religiously insane legislators we have, the smaller the chances of similarly restrictive laws being passed will become.
Full Twisted Story