Herd

So today, the official response from the Whitehouse (WH) is they now endorse herd immunity as a regimen to combat the spread of covid-19.

First, here is the definition of “herd immunity”:

the resistance to the spread of a contagious disease within a population that results if a sufficiently high proportion of individuals are immune to the disease, especially through vaccination.

“the level of vaccination needed to achieve herd immunity varies by disease but ranges from 83 to 94 percent”

Webster’s dictionary

Based on that, herd immunity is currently impossible. We cannot use herd immunity as a treatment regimen because we don’t have a vaccine!

The WH’s deliberate misinterpretation of the idea is to do nothing. Just let everyone be exposed and see who lives and dies. That is NOT herd immunity. This approach pushes the death toll into the millions, not the low hundreds of thousands like we have now. Just one percent of the US population, just one (1) percent, is over three (3) million people!  If we jump that up to five (5) percent, the death toll is just under 17 million people.

For perspective, one percent is more than the entire population of Phoenix, AZ. Five percent is more than the entire population of the New York City metro area. And this does not take into account the millions more who will struggle with lingering illness for weeks or months.

Even if you’re dumb and deaf, you can understand how insanely stupid and dangerous this is.

Voting has never been more important. It is heartening to see many cities are reporting record numbers of registered voters as well as early voting. Vote like your life depends on it because it just might this time.

Shut Down

I’ve pretty much given up on the idea of our country getting the pandemic under control. I predict we will continue to live with hodgepodge restrictions and shut downs thru the election in November. Only after 45 loses will we see a national strategy with a lockdown that will be consistent and effective. The mismatch state by state approach has obviously failed. There is no enforcement of any real value so people are free to disregard the directives.1 Shaming and viral exposure can only do so much.

The economy will continue to tank and businesses will shutter on a scale not seen since the Great Depression. Economists are already sounding the alarm. We blew it. Our selfish entitled attitudes created this mess. The ignorant minority continues to overshadow all the efforts of the responsible majority. We’ve allowed them thru mismanagement to take over the face of the pandemic. Maybe now that the Mango maniac has finally started wearing a mask, his cult followers will follow suit. We can only hope at this point.

All other countries with active restrictions and enforcement are seeing lower and lower cases. Many have already opened almost completely up, albeit with some mask requirements and restrictions on large events. They listened to their experts and acted accordingly.

I know I sound like Debbie Downer, but I’m trying to take a realistic approach based on what I see every day. The virus is spreading at a rampant rate again. Even California2 is seeing a big jump in cases and hospitalizations. And while the death total isn’t necessarily skyrocketing, people seem to forget, even those who don’t end up hospitalized can suffer for months after clearing the illness.

As of the news today, 1 in 5 Californians are unemployed. Many moratoriums on evictions (residential and commercial) are set to expire in the coming month. I expect California’s will mostly likely be extended, but the problem is still their looming over their heads. And it seems another round of stimulus checks might be coming, but they are drops in a bucket at this point.

I’m grateful for the fortunate circumstances I find myself in thru this; however, I worry for so many who are struggling between doing the right thing and being able to work and put food on their tables and a roof other their heads. The hubby is going stir-crazy being unemployed and home all the time; however, he is trying to hang in there. We get out on walks together on weekends to help break up the monotony.

If you’re struggling while you wait for “normal” to return, I’d put that aside. Normal is gone for 2020. Hunker down and adjust to our new reality for the next few months. I hope I’m wrong, but I’d be shocked if we have any meaningful developments before September. Hopefully, by year end the several possible vaccines will hold out to be effective enough to mass produce. A best case scenario is seeing a sense of normalcy returning before March 2021.

  1. And I’m not talking about people desperate to work or businesses fighting to exist. []
  2. granted mostly in Southern California []

Schock-ed!

Oh look, the hypocrite finally came out. Color no one surprised, henny! Seriously, we all knew! How could you NOT know?! He is only coming out now because he is being continually hounded and exposed for the continual liar and hypocrite he is.1 I admit my seething hatred for people like this is hard to control. I have tons of terribly vile and yet appropriate names for him beyond the truthful ones, but I won’t allow myself to go on a personal tirade because I strive to be better than that. Nor will I link directly to his BS non-apology apology statement.

Beside piggy-backing on the self-loathing LCR crowd with his whole straight white male charade, he had to add insult to injury and be one of the most conservative voting members in the house, even beyond LGBTI rights. He bragged every chance he got about how conservative he was.

  • He repeatedly voted against all gay rights.
  • He voted against amendments to include sexual orientation and gender identity as hate crimes.
  • He supported the marriage act.2
  • He aligned himself with the AFA, who hates all of us and wants us criminals or dead.
  • He voted against the repeal of DADT.3

So, no. Your BS letter does not make up for all the horrible things you did. It does not excuse you from being a crook and a liar while you were in office. And it certainly doesn’t make you “one of us” now that you were hounded into finally admitting the truth.

Simply put, until you show some real contrition and make an effort to undue the damage you’ve done, go fuck yourself!

  1. I know, terrible way to end a sentence. []
  2. I don’t think he ever got a chance to vote for it as it didn’t come up again during his tenure from what I remember. []
  3. Don’t Ask Don’t Tell []

Bias

One of the main reasons I’ve grown to loathe Facebook most days is the growing bias. Selective bias is slowly replacing our idea of logical reasoning. Just pick practically any topic and scroll thru your own friends list. You might be surprised it is closer to home than you think.

When social media came along, I just knew it was going to be a unifying force in the world. I was so excited and hopeful. Sadly, all it has done is allow folks to selectively reinforce their own biases. More and more every day you see people who favor bias over truth, honesty, or any sense of integrity. Talk about an unexpected outcome. hehehe In the past, the rules (and manners) of social interactions helped curb outrageous ideas, conspiracies, and all round nutjobs. they were confined to the fringe where they belong. Now can reach out to others that with like ideas with just the click of a button. This has emboldened them and we see many ideas and concepts considered absolutely insane break into the national consciousness.1

I don’t blame social media so much as our own failings. Our technology has outpaced our ethical ability to keep up with it. Our social media outlets have changed the world, just not necessarily for the better IMO. Oh don’t get me wrong, they do some good. You see fundraisers, goFundMe pages, outreach, etc. Local tragedies can grab national even global attention at times. But I find myself pondering whether the good it does outshines the harm? Sadly, I am beginning to think it doesn’t. The level of vitriol and toxicity is so very disheartening. After all my attempts to ditch FB in the past, this is the one that is slowly pushing me further and further away.

I wish I could say it was mainstream stuff and not local communities. Sadly, no. Be it NextDoor, FB, Twitter, etc. It is all becoming one toxic hole of spite, triggers, and/or attempts to shame each other. It gives new meaning to the idea of mob-mentality. People are tried and convicted based on click-bait articles, regardless of the lack of details. We are seeing the fallout even within our own LGBTI umbrella. We find allies fighting each other over the tiniest slights or misunderstandings. Conversations are polarizing discussions of who is right or ‘more wrong’.

There are times where I just kick myself for even bothering to try to point out distinctions. Our biases and indifference to others are forcing us into a sort of devolution of sorts. For myself, I can only control my actions. I continue to strive to bring things into my life that enrich it and avoid those that stain it. Social media is falling into the latter category more and more lately.

  1. Flat-Earthers, Anti-vaxxers, Holocust deniers, etc []

Stupefy

Today is brought to you by the letter S.

stu·pe·fy

ˈst(y)o͞opəˌfī/

verb

verb: stupefy; 3rd person present: stupefies; past tense: stupefied; past participle: stupefied; gerund or present participle: stupefying

  1. make (someone) unable to think or feel properly.

And how do we avoid stupefying those around us on social media when presented with a story or “news” item we want to believe but aren’t really sure is true? Let me offer you these short rules. 

  • Read the article. Does it match the title? If not, ignore it. Otherwise,  move on to the next step. 
  • Do you trust the source? Is the source well known or legitimate?1 If not, don’t share. Otherwise, move on to the next step. 
  • Has the source been caught fabricating stories or publishing false and/or misleading edits of stories? If so, don’t share. If not, move on to the next step. 
  • Seriously, go read the article. We all know you didn’t read it. If it really passed the previous steps move on to the next step. 
  • Does the action / event / article cite sources or provide proof to back up claims, accusations, and/or accomplishments? Sourcing yet another article with no proof is not a valid source. If not, don’t share. Otherwise, move on to the next step. 
  • If you’re too busy to read it, can’t go thru all the steps, or you feel the article is too long, don’t share it. Otherwise, move on to the next step. 
  • Does the article attempt to guilt or scare you into sharing it? If so, don’t share. No, you arent helping others “just in case“. Otherwise, move to the next step.
  • Does the article attempt to incite hatred or violence against others based on bias? If so, don’t share it.

If it passes all these steps then and ONLY then should you consider sharing it. Even then, you should still ask yourself if sharing will contribute in any way to the discussion? 

Now you know. Next time you are about to share a news story on social media you know what to ask yourself to avoid stupefying others. 

😜

  1. stating how many people removed from you can contest to its authenticity is not trustworthy ie “my coworker’s cousin’s wife can attest to this and she is  [insert contrived position of authority here]” []

Surprise

Everyone seems ‘surprised’ by the recent events revolving around the teenage girl Constance, who was duped into going to a fake prom while everyone else went to a different one. Or that Derrick was kicked out by his parents for wanting something so simple and easy as taking his boyfriend to the prom. Really? You are surprised? What world have you been living in? Have we insulated ourselves behind our little bubbles (neighborhoods) that we have forgotten the harsh realities?

Just because I now live in the (make believe) mecca, I haven’t forgotten where I came from and what I went thru growing up. I have all the respect in the world for Constance and Derrick. They took the high road knowing it would create hardship. Granted they probably never realized how big it would become but still. They chose to stand-up and demand equality. They will go into adulthood with a sense of strength lacking in many of their classmates and be better for it.

The really surprising thing about this whole ordeal is that it took this long for it to come out (pun intended). How many of us over the years have gone thru the same or similar situation? I certainly knew I couldn’t bring my boyfriend to the prom way back when.1  Hell, they might have actually stoned me had I tried. These horrible ideals aren’t new or even surprising. As we become more visible in society more of our struggles will see the light of day. And while I can’t fault those who take the safe route in their lives, I can acknowledge and support those who do.

As the need for news and information has gone global, courtesy of the internet, people everywhere begin to see the harsh reality of what its sometimes like to grow up gay in America. We need to continue to focus on stories like this. We need to shine the light of day on those who would hide behind fear, ignorance, and religion to justify treating human beings less than human. The great thing about the ‘sensationalist’ approach a lot of media outlets have taken too these days is more of the crazies come forward and are exposed for exactly what they are.

  1. I didn’t go. I figured if I couldn’t bring who I really wanted, the hell with it. []

Celebration Time

i was all set to blog about some philosophical stuff I’ve been pondering.  However, today was the topper.  With the California Supreme Courts decision to overturn the gay marriage ban, Cali becomes the 2nd state in the Union to allow gays/lesbians to get married.  The decision was 4-3 in favor and w/6 of the judges being Republican it sends a powerful message.  The ruling goes into affect 30 days from today.  And while I have no one I’m planning to tie the knot with anytime soon, to say that I am ecstatic is putting it mildly. 

Actually, I got the news on my phone while I was in class.  I promptly broke down and started crying.  At first, everyone thought I was hurt.  Once I was able to speak and explain why I was so emotional, the entire class of managers I was instructing stood up and clapped.  It was a very powerful and emotional moment. 

Sadly, all of the marriages that were invalidated 2 years ago will not be re-instated.  Those people will have to go thru it again.  Then there is the fear the hate mongers from Colorado Springs will succeed in getting a Constitutional amendment passed.  However, I don’t really see it happening.  With even the Republican Governor stating he won’t support a Constitutional amendment, I doubt they’ll even get enough signatures to get it on the ballot.  And if they do, the overall feel here is that it is a done deal and it is time to move on.

Gay marriage as always been a touchy subject for me.  I firmly believe once we get it passed on a Federal level, it will be the last major hurdle in our fight for equal rights.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not so foolish as to think all the hate-mongers will give up.  Not even close.  However, like women’s right to vote and the abolishment of slavery it will be a turning point in our fight for equality under the law. 

To be honest, I didn’t expect to see it in my lifetime.  Gays/lesbians have come so far in just 10 short years.  And while we still have a ways to go, I am beginning to feel like I belong to this country once again.  Call it naive or wishful thinking, I don’t care.  I always try to see the good in humanity and just when I began to doubt, something like this comes along and renews my faith. 

Here are some of the related articles

Digg

Kron4

SFgate

CNN The correct version.  They got it wrong the first time. 

Associated Press

Needless to say, the Castro was a holy mess this evening.  They had to close down Castro St. for several hours until the revelers calmed down a bit.  Oh yes, people here are very excited! 

Bless His Heart

I got this rather edu-mucated response on my about page this morning. It is always nice to be insulted by a complete moron. *giggle*

New comment on your post #643 “About:Me”
Author : Whatever (IP: 66.66.139.55 , cpe-66-66-139-55.rochester.res.rr.com)
E-mail : noway@noway.com
URI :
Whois : http://ws.arin.net/cgi-bin/whois.pl?queryinput=66.66.139.55
Comment:
Your blog sucks and so does your attitude. Go suck a fuck you loser.

Of course, in this instance I know where it came from. I left a comment over at Towleroad about the lesbian suing eharmony because they don’t cater to lesbian/gays.

I think I might do a weekly section dedicated to these folks. This particularly bitter individual must be miserable in life. He/she also managed to equate the murder of Matthew Shepard w/eharmony refusing to cater to us. Oh yeah, that is truly great logic in motion.

News You Can Use

WOW! Who knew my news commentary would spark a rush of email. I got home to a slew of emails querying why the sudden interest in current events. (and I never understand how some people just don’t like posting to blogs) Gosh folks, I didn’t really mean to sound so self-absorbed. I swear (in my best Paris Hilton voice) I’m not! lol Seriously though, I usually avoid blogging about most mainstream topics as so many bloggers do a way better job of beating the news to death.

My friend Tim always says I downplay my intelligence to avoid sounding arrogant. Well thats probably true but not really the reason behind not being a topical blogger. Truth be told, I consume a variety of news sites on a daily basis. I have a variety of interests and tend to go where my curiosity gets sated the most. I lean more toward science, technology, and advancements in medicine. I try really hard to stay informed of the changes in the world around me. However, the blog is and has always been for me to journal and rant about things in my own life. I’ll probably continue to throw in news that interests me but you won’t see my blog turn into a media outlet. (Lately, I don’t even have enough time to get laid much less be a news hound)

As you can tell from the news I did include, not exactly front page material! Well, I’m home from work. Not a bad day. I spent half on the fire side and the rest on pd side. We had a 217 (shooting) right before I left. Thankfully, it was time for me to go. And w/that in mind, it is time to catch on the Tivo shows!

Night all.