Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Will An Adult Court Finally Hear Prop 8 Case?

Sure looks like it, and about time. Proposition 8 will be upheld.

 The Proposition 8 legal team filed papers today appealing to the Supreme Court to respect the will of the California voters and the definition of marriage. We have said all along that the case would go to the Supreme Court, removed from the reach of the clownish Judge Vaughn Walker, and the most overturned Judge in the most overturned court in the land, Judge Stephen Reinhardt of  the Ninth Circuit.

Some examples, in reverse chronological order:

In a foregone conclusion, the Ninth Circuit today refused the petition for an en banc rehearing of Judge Reinhardt's anti-marriage ruling.

The Ninth Circuit is expected to rule tomorrow on the Proposition 8 case. As we have said many times before, given the court's makeup, we expect the Ninth Circuit to uphold Judge Walker's ruling, and we equally expect their decision to be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Reinhardt, who should have recused himself (see here, here, and here), and the others will almost certainly uphold Walker's ruling. Then, on to the Supreme Court!

The Colorado Shooting and the Value of "Judgmentalism"

The pathology of allowing "nonjudgmentalism" and "nondiscrimination" to become a ruling principle has  consequences. One example was the deliberate overlooking, by his military superiors and the FBI, of Major Nadil Hasan's openly expressed extremist Islamic beliefs.  Hasan, of course, went on to slaughter 13 people at Forth Hood, Texas. In the wake of the Aurora, Colorado massacre Richard Fernandez, writing  at the Belmont Club, observes that the government, which gave the shooter James Holmes a grant, and the Colorado University, where he studied, treated him just like any other student. But one guy didn't.

"The only person who was free to act on his gut instinct was the gun-club owner. He was creeped out by Holmes’ behavior and instructed his employees not to let him join the club.
The owner of a gun range told the AP that Holmes applied to join the club last month but never became a member because of his behaviour and a “bizarre” message on his voice mail.

He emailed an application to join the Lead Valley Range in Byers on June 25 in which he said he was not a user of illegal drugs or a convicted felon, said owner Glenn Rotkovich. When Mr Rotkovich called to invite him to a mandatory orientation the following week, he said he heard a message on Holmes’ voice mail that was “bizarre – guttural, freakish at best.”

He left two other messages but eventually told his staff to watch out for Holmes at the July 1 orientation and not to accept him into the club, Mr Rotkovich said.
Some people might call this discriminatory behavior."

And they would be correct. Mr. Fernandez continues:

 "After all, what reason did he have for refusing admission to a fine upstanding young man with no drug or criminal record, a member in good standing of a medical institution and the recipient of a prestigious Federal Grant, other than the fact that he gave off bad vibes?"

Mr. Rotkovich was judgmental. He was discriminatory. He used common sense.

Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney

Curt Jester and Mass Roulette

One of our favorite bloggers is Jeff Miller, the Curt Jester. Today he has a post called "Mass Roulette"--about the gamble you take when attending a parish while on vacation or a business trip:

"The parish I went to this weekend engaged in the 'let us have everybody shake hands and introduce their names before Mass started' form of faux community building. This is extended by the more common practice of the priest starting the Mass with a Hello, Good morning, ect, and ending the Mass with a 'Have a nice weekend everybody ' In Persona Casual Guy....

In the back of the sanctuary was a fairly nice stain glass window with lots of blank wall space on either side. So on each side of the window they displayed various things onto the wall via two projectors. Sacred space and sacred projection space."

Jeff has fun and is funny, but he reminds us of the most important thing at the end:

"Oh well maybe the next playing of Mass Roulette will match up a liturgical winner. Though with the Eucharist we are always winners."

Monday, July 30, 2012

Second Annual San Francisco Rosary Rally!!

It will be on October 13, 2012--by that time Archbishop Cordileone will be installed and maybe he will be there!

On October 13, San Francisco Catholics will usher in our Holy Father's Year of Faith with the Second Annual San Francisco Rosary Rally. From the organizers:

"The Archdiocese of San Francisco, Legion of Mary, Knights of Columbus, Ignatius Press and Immaculate Heart Radio invite all Catholics from the Archdiocese of San Francisco and beyond to join us as we honor Our Blessed Mother and Kick off the “Year of Faith” at the second annual San Francisco Family Rosary Rally.

The Rally will be held Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 12:00 Noon in San Francisco’s
U.N. Plaza at Market and 7th Streets.

The day will begin with a 9:30AM Mass at Saint Mary’s Cathedral, followed by a procession to the plaza.The Master of Ceremonies will be Fr. Lawrence Goode, of St. Francis Church in Palo Alto. Speakers include Father Mark Mary, MFVA, Host of EWTN's Life on the Rock, and Father Moises Agudo, the Hispanic Ministry Vicar of the Archdiocese of San Francisco.

The faithful will then recite the Rosary in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament.

In the 1950’s and 60’s, Holy Cross Father Patrick Peyton led Rosary Rallies all over the world. His 1961 rally at the Polo Fields in Golden Gate Park, drew 550,000 people—the largest gathering in the history of San Francisco. In 2011, San Francisco Catholics marked the 50th anniversary of Fr. Peyton’s rally by re-establishing the San Francisco Rosary Rally as an ongoing tradition."

For more info, visit: http://www.rosaryrallysf.com/

Here are some pictures from last year's rally, which drew about 1500 of the faithful:

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Help Preserve Marriage in Washington!

The good people in the state of Washington need our help! Referendum 74, on the ballot this November, aims to defend natural marriage in the state.

The latest polls show the race is tight. We know that support for natural marriage is always higher than polling shows.The foolish habit of counterfeit "marriage" supporters, calling those who disagree with them bigots, leads a certain percentage of people to keep their opinion to themselves. But once they are in the voting booth, they vote their conscience.

This past week, Jeff Bezos, billionaire founder of Amazon.com, pledged $2.5 million to support counterfeit marriage in the state.We aren't billionaires, but there are a lot of us. Let's help the people of Washington!

Go to preservemarriagewashington.com and make a donation. You can find other ways to help, too.

Friday, July 27, 2012

More on Archbishop Cordileone

Catholic San Francisco is reporting that His Excellency's installation Mass, as the ninth Archbishop of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, will be celebrated on October 4, the Feast of St. Francis.

Our good outgoing Archbishop George Niederauer noted that Archbishop Cordileone "has many ties to the Church in San Francisco; indeed, his father was born here. In recent years, as we have served as brother bishops in the Bay Area and the Province of San Francisco, I have come to know him as an energetic, hard-working, prayerful and faith-filled shepherd to his people."

That's right--his dad was baptized at Saints Peter and Paul Church. Here's a nice picture of His Excellency with his brother Bishop Jaime Soto of Sacramento at the Walk for Life West Coast a couple of years back. His Excellency listens will Bishop Soto makes a point to EWTN's "Life on the Rock" audience:

And here's His Excellency speaking at the San Francisco Stand Up For Religious Freedom rally on March 23, 2012:

Archbishop Cordileone of San Francisco!

One of the youngest and most dynamic bishops in the United States, His Excellency Salvatore Cordileone of Oakland, has been named the ninth Archbishop of San Francisco. Rocco Palmo reported the news from the Vatican at 3AM PST--noon Rome time.

The appointment is stunning. Bishop Cordileone is best known for his defense of natural marriage and the family. His appointment to lead the diocese where Gavin Newsom illegally and unilaterally began issuing same-sex "marriage" licenses in 2004 puts right on the front line of that issue. His Excellency discusses the defense of marriage in the 2008 "Marriage Matters to Kids" video:

For those who have lamented the drift of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, the appointment could not be more heartening.

From Palmo's reports:

"A 'major announcement on the future of the archdiocese" already set for 10am local time at St Mary's Cathedral, at Roman Noon the pontiff named Bishop Salvatore Cordileone, 56 -- the San Diego-born head of the neighboring Oakland church since 2009, and chairman of the US bishops' efforts to defend the traditional definition of marriage -- to succeed Archbishop George Niederauer, who reached the retirement age of 75 in June 2011.

After a half-century of occupants accused by conservatives of soft-pedaling church teaching, instead favoring a more conciliatory approach toward constituencies ranging from gays and lesbians to Nancy Pelosi-- a group of prelates among which the recently-retired chief guardian of church doctrine, CardinalWilliam Levada, was not exempt from sometimes stinging criticism -- the move delivers the 'Holy Grail' of the American Catholic Right firmly into the faction's hands, in the form of a prelate already known widely both for his forcefulness and a stringent doctrinal cred almost unequaled among his confreres on the national bench."

The diocese covers three counties, San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin. While there is a strong pro-Catholic and pro-family movement, exemplified by the Walk for Life West Coast, San Francisco itself is well known for its activist homosexual political structure and anti-Catholic attitude. Some of those attitudes are even found in parishes and certainly in the (Jesuit) University of San Francisco. In 2008, more than 80% of San Francisco voters supported Barack Obama. The city is also represented in Congress by Nancy Pelosi, who although nominally Catholic, has offered her own theological corrections to the Bishops on more than one occasion. San Francisco also has the fewest number of children of any comparable city in the United States.

Much more soon.

Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney

Thursday, July 26, 2012

New Archbishop for San Francisco Tomorrow?

It sounds like it:

"Major announcement for future of the archdiocese tomorrow 10am at Cathedral press conference"


St. Francis, pray for us!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

"The Queer Rebellion Against Reality"

Calling attention to the misguided attempt to create a false reality through legislation (whether by redefining what is marriage, what is the family, and even who is or is not human) is one of our recurring tasks at "A Shepherd's Voice." Of course are not alone in this. On July 20, Crisis magazine published an article by Dale Leary called The Queer Rebellion Against Reality. An excerpt:

"Sex difference is part of the goodness of creation.

In the beginning…God created man in his own image…male and female he created them… and God saw all that he had made and it was very good.”

No one can change their sex. It is written on the DNA. Each man should praise and thank God for his manhood, each woman for her womanhood. Persons who self-identify as Transgendered or Queer are not thankful. They believe that God made a mistake. Of course, they may not say that outright, instead the transgendered talk about how people were ‘assigned’ a sex at birth as though this was an arbitrary and oppressive act by the doctor rather than a simple observation of reality. They complain that they were not given a choice in matter. Some insist that they are really women trapped in men’s bodies, or men trapped in women’s bodies. The Queer view a world divided into male and female as an abridgement of their freedom to choose — or not choose – which ‘gender’ they want to be.

Rather than praising God for the gift of their sexual identity – for He surely knew what he was doing when he willed each one of us into being – they give in to envy. They covet the attributes and privileges of the other sex. They rebel against reality."

Professional Ethicists and Shining Examples

Anthony Esolen writes at Public Discourse:

"On Expertise and Ethics"

One of the more puzzling things about contemporary arguments regarding what things a good or free society ought to allow and what things it ought to forbid is our turn toward the 'expert,' the ethicist, the person who has made a professional career of teasing out deductions from moral premises. But what really qualifies such a person to be regarded as a beacon of wisdom? Aristotle famously said that the best way to learn about justice would be to observe a just man. The dictum is not tautological. In the life of a Mother Teresa, for example, we may learn literally countless—that is, not reducible to numbers—lessons in love and magnanimity, whence we may confirm true principles already held, and reveal others whose existence we had not suspected. We would be confronting the just life not as an academic exercise, but as an intensely personal challenge."

Read the whole thing.

Lee Harris explores the same subject in his essay "The Future of Tradition."

"In a world where shining examples are no longer pointed out, what is there to aspire to? You must change yourself, as Rilke’s poem tells us, but into what? A tolerant person? A wise person? These are abstractions. They permit us to declare ourselves “tolerant” without further ado, just as we can equally well declare ourselves “caring” or “loving” or “open-minded.” We can make a resolution to become more sensitive to others or more appreciative of their feelings. Indeed, we can even display bumper stickers that assure both us and the world of our deep devotion to world peace and the brotherhood of man.

A society that moves from seeing the human ideal in terms of shining examples to thinking of the human ideal in abstract terms is a society that has undergone the most traumatic and wrenching change imaginable — a change so drastic that those who come out on the other side of it cannot comprehend the position of those who have been left behind by it. These are your shining examples, but they have no meaning for me. They are not my heroes, but yours.

The moment we leave it to ourselves to measure our own progress, we have lost the most powerful motive for making progress, and that is to make ourselves as close to our shining example as we possibly can. Only a shining example has the power to transform us from our present state to a higher one — abstract principles alone can never do this. Indeed, their very abstractness serves to camouflage all sorts of disreputable self-deceptions, as no abstract term can ever protest against even its most wanton misuse."

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Boy Scouts: "Duty to God and Country"

From the Washington Times:

"The Boy Scouts of America said Tuesday it would keep its policy that does not 'grant membership' to open or avowed homosexuals or persons who engage in behavior that would become 'a distraction to the mission' of the century-old organization for boys, teens and men"

Good for them. Sounds to me like any same-sex attracted kid would still be allowed as long as he keeps private matters properly private, and behaves with what used to be known as common decency. The inculcation of such decency is central to the Scouts' mission. But the effrontery described in the next sentence surprised even me, although I don't expect consistency, honesty, or even sanity from those promoting the homosexualist agenda:

"Critics immediately denounced the decision, saying a 'secret' committee of 11 people shouldn’t have the final say in an issue like this."

But they think it's OK for a committee of one, i.e. Judge Walker, to redefine mankind's oldest institution and overrule the votes of millions of Californians.

Posted Gibbons J. Cooney

Monday, July 16, 2012

"The Church is concerned with what is best for the common good"

Here is an excellent Pastor's Message from Fr. Greg Coiro, O.F.M. Cap., at San Francisco's Shrine of St. Francis of Assisi. It is from the week of May 13, 2012.

In today’s second reading, the Apostle John tells us in such simple language the greatest of truths: God is love. This reminds me of something the late Cardinal Basil Hume, O.S.B., archbishop of Westminster, England, wrote. He said that every experience of love—even love between two men and two women—is an experience of God, for God is love. However, not every expression of love is godly.

This is good to keep in mind as we consider the growing movement to promote acceptance of same-sex “marriage”, endorsed this week by Vice President Joe Biden, a Catholic, and then by President Barack Obama.

The Catholic Church is very clear in its teaching that the word “marriage” has a specific meaning. It is a covenant between one man and one woman, made before God and the community, to live together in faithful monogamy thus forming the basic cell of society, the family, into which children might be born and reared.

Jesus endorsed this concept when he said, “Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh.” (Matthew 19: 4-6) The Church’s understanding of sexuality in marriage, based upon God’s revelation and the Natural Law, is that it must be unitive and procreative, at least in potentia.

While members of the same sex can indeed enter into the unitive dimension of lovemaking, it is impossible for them to fulfill, even potentially, the procreative aspect of this great gift in their congress. “Aha!” advocates of same-sex “marriage” will say. “By that line of reasoning, you should not allow sterile people, or older women who have passed their child-bearing years, to marry then.” This is a flawed objection because such persons can and will engage in the conjugal acts which, under optimal conditions, could lead to co-creating, with God, new life.

To call other relationships, which lack this essential component, “marriages” does an injustice to not only the word but to the institution itself. If any relationship can be called a “marriage” then the specialness of marriage is lost.

Some might object by saying that it is strictly an arbitrary social construct that demands that the partners in marriage be of opposite sexes. If that were the case, then it would be unavoidable to conclude that the number of partners is also arbitrary.

This would open a Pandora’s box of not only polygamous marriages, but even of polyamorous marriages. (It is important to note that, in societies that do allow polygamy, each marriage is still a relationship between one man and one woman; the spouses are not all married to each other.)

Many, basing their arguments strictly on feelings and emotions, argue that people should be free to marry based upon whom they love, but this, too, would lead to chaos. On what grounds would society be able to say that parents should not marry their children, or siblings should not be able to marry each other, if the only criterion were love?

Millennia of human history enhanced by many streams of religious thought have taught us that the traditional definition of “marriage” works best for the common good.

Do traditional marriages fail while monogamous same-sex relationships thrive and prosper? Of
course they do but that’s no argument to change the definition of marriage. Rather, it is an argument for strengthening marriages.

Is this treating homosexuals as less than equal? I do not think so. After all, gay men and Lesbians have always had the right and option to marry according to the traditional definition of marriage, but because of their sexual orientation, they are disinclined to marry someone of the opposite sex. This is completely understandable.

What maintaining the traditional definition of marriage does accomplish is the social recognition that heterosexual relationships and homosexual relationships are not the same. But  heterosexuals and homosexuals are indeed equal.

What we, as a society, must work on is the promotion of equality without reducing it to “sameness.”
Our Church is in the lead in this endeavor. While advocates of same-sex “marriage” are predominantly concerned with what redefining “marriage” can do for the good of same-sex couples, the Church is concerned with what is best for the common good.

Pax et Bonum,

Fr. Gregory Coiro, O.F.M.Cap.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Counterfeit Marriage: It's Not Just For People Anymore

The San Francisco Chronicle has the story: Dogs From NY, Virginia Wed at Charity Extravaganza.

It's not real, people say. But neither is same-sex "marriage."

Let's see, in the past year or so we've had a guy "marry" bacon, a girl "marry" a building, a girl "marry" herself (one of a number of people who have done this, actually), and whatever Barney Frank has been up to lately.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Arlington Bishop Asserts Responsibility for Catholic Teaching, Demands Fidelity From Sunday School Teachers

About time. Way to go, Bishop Loverde!

From the Washington Post:

Sunday School teachers protest oath on Catholic teachings

"Kathleen Riley knows her beliefs on the male-only priesthood and contraception put her at odds with leaders of her church. But as a fifth-generation Catholic who went to a Catholic school and grew up to teach in one, Riley feels the faith deeply woven through her.

So when her Arlington, Va., parish asked for volunteers last summer to teach Sunday school, she felt called by the Holy Spirit to say yes. A year later, the 52-year-old computer scientist feels the same spirit calling her to say no.

Last month, Riley joined at least four other Sunday school teachers and resigned from her post at St. Ann’s parish after a letter arrived at her home requiring her — and all teachers in the Arlington Catholic Diocese — to submit “of will and intellect” to all of the teachings of church leaders...."

If they don't believe in the faith, they most certainly should resign.  Let's hope other Dioceses follow Bihop Loverde's responsible example. I hope they apply it to RCIA, too, which was an absolute penance when I did it..

Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Sleazy Tactics by Counterfeit "Marriage" Supporters: Minnesota Version

 Proponents of counterfeit "marriage" in the state of Minnesota are resorting to the sleazy tactics that have become their hallmark. Mark Ritchie, the Democratic Secretary of State has changed the wording of the Minnesota Protect Marriage Amendment, hoping to confuse the voters. As we posted on April 27, 2012, they tried the same type of deception  in North Carolina, and in California. It did not work in those states, and, pray God, it will not work in Minnesota. In any event, YOU can help the good people of Minnesota by contributing. Just hit the "Minnesota for Marriage" button on the right hand pane to help them as they fight for the family.

Here's our April 27 post in full:
Same-sex “marriage” activists in North Carolina are resorting to outright deception in order to advance their cause. As Brian Brown, of the National Organization for Marriage writes:

“…in North Carolina they've conceded defeat on the main question—should marriage be a union of husband and wife?—and are blanketing the airwaves with lies to scare voters into thinking the amendment will somehow strip women of protection from domestic violence”
A thorough refutation of such hysterical claims has been presented by three professors from the Campbell University Scool of Law. It may be read here.
Such behavior is typical same-sex “marriage” activists and it is a good indicator of 1) their inability to win the issue on the merits; and 2) their lack of concern for the common good of society.
On November 29, 2011, the New York Daily News reported on a ruling by New York state Judge Robert Wiggins codemning the tactics of the Cuomo administration in ramming through same-sex “marriage” legislation in violation of the state’s “Open Meetings” law:
“It is ironic that much of the state’s brief passionately spews sanctimonious verbiage on the separation of powers in the governmental branches, and clear arm-twisting by the Executive on the Legislative permeates this entire process,' Wiggins wrote."
Such tactics are nothing new, of course. In 2007, the legislature of Massachusetts even refused to allow a constitutional amendment proposing to overturn Massachusetts' court-imposed redefinition of marriage to be put on the ballot. This was in spite of the fact that a record 170,000 citizens had signed the petition. But the legislature refused to even allow Massachusetts citizens to vote on the matter.
In California, the sleazy tactics used to force counterfeit marriage down the people's throats began long before Proposition 8 even reached the ballot, and it continues long after the people of the state passed it:
• When Mayor Gavin Newsom unilaterally and in violation of the law decided to start issuing counterfeit "marriage" licenses;

• When opponents of Prop8 filed suit to have the measure removed from the ballot. Prop 8 went to the voters anyway.

• When then-Attorney General Jerry Brown changed the title of Proposition 8, in order to weaken support for it. Prop 8 won big despite the change.

• When then-Attorney General Brown refused to do his duty and defend Prop 8, passed by a significant majority of Californians.
Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney

Peaceful Muslims?

So many Americans, charitable as they are, consider Muslims a peaceful
group, with the exception of the radicals, of course!

But the Washington, D.C. Office of Human Rights confirmed that it is
investigating allegations that Catholic University violated the human rights
of Muslim students by not allowing them to form a Muslim student group and
by not providing them rooms without Christian symbols for their daily

The investigation alleges that Muslim students "must perform their prayers
surrounded by symbols of Catholicism - e.g., a wooden crucifix, paintings of
Jesus, pictures of priests and theologians which many Muslim students find

A spokesperson for the Office of Human Rights told Fox News they had
received a 60-page complaint against the private university. The
investigation, they said, could take as long as six months.

Why would a Muslim choose a Catholic University in the first place, if it so
violate its rights? Because they want change from our way to theirs!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Walter Hoye, Sr.

Walter Hoye, Sr., the father of our dear friend Walter Hoye, went home to the Lord on June 28. Walter shared this lovely video commemorating the life of his dad. What a fine man, who was obviously a great influence on his son.


 Rest in peace, Mr. Hoye, and Walter and Lori, our prayers are with you and your family.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Broke California Commits $68 Billion to "High Speed Rail"

Jerry Brown, Mark Leno, and their minions get their wish. The project had met major opposition due to the calamitous state of California's finances, but Brown tied funding of local transit to the enormous expenditure.
"California lawmakers approved billions of dollars Friday in construction financing for the first segment of what would be the nation's first dedicated high-speed rail line, eventually connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco.
The state Senate voted 21-16 on a party-line vote after intense lobbying by Gov. Jerry Brown, Democratic leaders and labor groups.
The bill authorizes the state to begin selling $2.6 billion in voter-approved bonds to build an initial 130-miles stretch in the Central Valley. That would allow the state to collect about $3.2 billion in federal funding that could have been rescinded if lawmakers failed to act Friday.
Critics call the bullet train a boondoggle, but supporters hailed the vote as the start of a much-needed infrastructure project. The bill also includes about $1.9 billion in funds for local rail projects.
The bill, which passed the state Assembly, now heads to the governor. The final cost of the completed project from Los Angeles to San Francisco would be $68 billion."
Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney

Thursday, July 5, 2012

"I don’t think the bishops waded into politics. I think politics waded into them."

So writes the very widely followed libertarian blogger Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit. Here's his full entry, which links to the Roll Call article he is commenting on.

Effort to Overturn Contraceptive Mandate Shifts Focus to Bishops’ Advocacy.'A Catholic-led fight to overturn contraceptive mandates in the health care law has drawn big dollars, large crowds and prominent GOP backing, raising questions about how aggressively Catholic bishops might wade into politics.'  I don’t think the bishops waded into politics. I think politics waded into them."

Of course. Proponents of "the separation of church and state" pretty much only see that separation as working in one direction--restricting the realm of action of the church.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Parents: It's Your DUTY to get Educated About the Web!

A call to action for parents from Reuters:

"It won’t make the news to report that teens occasionally, or even habitually, indulge in activities of which their parents disapprove. Nor should it come as a surprise that the young folk attempt to hide this behaviour; thus it has ever been as long as there have been parents, teens and the rules that sometimes come between them. However, the ubiquity of device ownership amongst teens (from laptops to tablets to hand-held devices) plus 24-7 internet access is making some problems a little more difficult to deal with.

The online security company MacAfee has been
conducting surveys into internet use and behaviour. A recent survey found that in 2012, 70 percent of teens (aged 13-17) reported having hidden online behaviour from parents. This was up from 45 percent of teens in 2010. "There's a lot more to do on the Internet today, which ultimately means there's a lot more to hide," said McAfee spokesman Robert Siciliano.

Maybe yes, maybe no. When it comes to forbidden teen behaviour, there has always been a lot to do: smoking, drinking, partying, taking drugs, using porn, hanging out with unsavoury friends, petty crime, gang behaviour, secret dating/sexual relationships. And not all online behaviour is necessarily harmful in itself: the problem arises in managing time and finding balance. At our house, the main challenge seems to be limiting hours spent on Face book (Mom is guilty too, alas) or computer games.

“The survey found that 43 percent of teens have accessed simulated violence online, 36 percent have read about sex online, and 32 percent went online to see nude photos or pornography.”

Again, while internet availability can exacerbate these issues, they are not unique to cyberspace. You can access all three on TV, computer games, and –at least in Canada—at the
National Museum of Science and Technology.

Teens reported using various methods and tactics to avoid being discovered, from clearing browser history to deleting messages or just closing/minimizing windows and web pages when parents enter the room. The survey found that nearly 74 percent of parents trust their teens not to access inappropriate content, while 23 percent said they are not monitoring their children’s online behaviour at all, citing that they feel “overwhelmed by technology.” (With such an attitude, perhaps they feel overwhelmed by parenting as well.)

 ‘Siciliano said that is no excuse. "Parents can put their foot down and they can get educated…. They can learn about the technology at hand.”’

Well, yes, but that’s actually two different things. I always have the time (and willpower) to exercise my parental authority; learn how to access Netflix via the Wii, not so much.

When all is said and done, the most crucial approach in combating these issues is just knowing your child and being able to talk to him/her. “They can learn about their children's lives," Siciliano said. Can parents eliminate bad behaviour, online or otherwise? Not as long as human nature exists. But if you’ve done your utmost to pass your values onto your children; if you’ve tried to foster a healthy parent-child relationship and strive to keep open the lines of communication, you can go a long way in avoiding or minimizing the damage.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

“An abstraction of what a family used to look like."

“An abstraction of what a family used to look like."
Mark Leno’s Latest Redefinition

On July 2, the Daily Mail UK reported: “From the dawn of time, the natural order of things has been that a child has two parents: a mother and a father, but a new bill that is currently before the California state Assembly might change all that.

State Senator Mark Leno (shown left at the Dore Alley leather fair, photo cortesy SFist) has proposed legislation to allow a child to have multiple parents. ‘The bill brings California into the 21st century, recognizing that there are more than Ozzie and Harriet families today….

SB 1476 stemmed from an appellate court case last year involving a child's biological mother, her same-sex partner, and a man who had an affair with the biological mother and got her pregnant while she was separated temporarily from her female lover.”

The Daily Mail quoted Karen Anderson, of the California Protective Parents Association, who objected to the bill: ‘It's hard enough for children to be split up two ways, much less multiple ways,’ she told the Sacramento Bee."

In the San Jose Mercury News, Ed Howard, senior counsel for the Children's Advocacy Institute at the University of San Diego School of Law, and an advocate for the legislation offered this justification: "It's not us who have changed the nature of families; families have done it on their own…It is cruel to prevent judges from ruling a way that protects kids in favor of an abstraction of what a family used to look like."
This is not the first redefinition engineered by Leno. He sponsored a number of bills attempting to redefine marriage in the state of California , all of which were vetoed by then-governor Arnold Schwarzenneggar. He is also the sponsor of SB 48, a bill with the professed intention of the prevention of “bullying” but whose actual intent is brainwashing children into the affirmation of homosexuality. As Leno said in a press release announcing the bill "Most textbooks don't include any historical information about the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) movement, which has great significance to both California and U.S. history…" Pro-Family groups are currently trying to overturn SB 48.
Leno is one of the worst of the many bad San Francisco Democratic politicians who have completely “demoralized” California government. Leno is a supporter and regular attendee at San Francisco’s disgusting Folsom Street Fair. From a September 2010 article in the Bay Area Reporter “The city's long-established leather community tends to enjoy a strong relationship with city government. ‘Local politicians have been very friendly and supportive,’ said Liza Sibley, executive producer of Ms. San Francisco Leather. ‘[State Senator] Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) has always been fabulous for the leather community. [Assemblyman] Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) has always been wonderful in talking to the leather community." In addition, she observed, District 8 supervisor candidates Rebecca Prozan, Scott Wiener, and Rafael Mandelman were present at this year's annual Leather Walk.’ ‘This is a rare Folsom I'll miss,’ Leno told the Bay Area Reporter.”

The almost unbelievable immorality of San Francisco’s political structure was highlighted this past week with the arrest of long-time “gay rights icon” Larry Brinkin. Brinkin, a highly respected member in San Francisco politics, who served for more than 20 years on the City’s Human Rights Commission, and received a salary of $135,000, was arrested for the possession of child pornography. The alternative “SF Weekly” reported “The warrant (for Brinkin’s arrest) claims these e-mails contained images of children as young as perhaps a year old being sodomized by and performing oral sex on adult men. Zack3737@aol.com -- whom the police allege is Brinkin -- provided graphic commentary on the photos of interracial adult-child sex. Comments included "I loved especially the n***** 2 year old getting nailed. Hope you'll continue so I can see what the little blond b**** is going to get. White Power! White Supremacy! White D*** Rules!" Editing added..
On his retirement from the Human Rights Commission, the City’s board of Supervisors named the first week in February “Larry Brinkin Week.” As CalCatholic reported, Brinkin was joined on the Human Rights Commission by Patrick Mulcahey, a man who openly keeps a “slave” and gives workshops promoting the “Master/slave” lifestyle. Publication of Brinkin’s arrest, which occurred on Friday, June 22,was delayed until Monday, June 25, so as not to cast a pall over the City’s “Gay pride” parade, held on June 24. The response to the Brinkin case seems rather mild. The San Francisco District Attorney is still deciding whether to file charges. The San Francisco Chronicle has not followed up on this case, which took place in its own backyard, and which has made news internationally, since the initial story of Monday, and a second story on June 26.