23 October 2013

Halloween Costume Issues Resolved

Spanish Dancer and Japanese Fireman early 1960s
My grandmother's spanish hair comb and her old piano shawl.
I still have my costume so I am all set.

15 October 2013

I thought This Was A Joke - But No.

Job Description 

Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing Investigations Manager-130030320

Job Description

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2 trillion and operations in more than 60 countries. The firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers, small business and commercial banking, financial transaction processing, asset management, and private equity.
The Global Financial Crimes Compliance (GFCC) organization has over 700 staff members across the world.  The team covers both global and business-aligned functions supporting the firm's Anti-money laundering (AML), Sanctions, and Anti-corruption programs and is lead by the BSA/AML Officer and the AML Operations Executive.
The successful candidate will manage a high profile Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing function with several investigative professionals. 

28 September 2013

CT Dem Party Party-Crashed by Ted Cruz

The Connecticut Democratic Party held the 65th annual Jefferson Jackson Bailey dinner featuring Governor Dannel P. Malloy and Congresswoman Robin Kelly [UPDATE] Congressman Ted Cruz.

WHEN: Saturday, Sept. 28 2013; Event begins at 7 p.m.; Press check-in begins at 4 p.m.

WHERE: The Aqua Turf Club, 556 Mulberry St., Plantsville, CT 06479

Intended as a celebration of the Connecticut Democratic Party’s political control of both Senate seats, all five Congressional seats, the Governor’s desk and the Constitutional positions of Lt. governor, Attorney General, Comptroller, and Treasurer, the JJB was undermined y the Tea Party Takeover in Washington DC. 

Five of the seven DC folks were stuck inside The Beltway being held hostage to John Boehner’s loss of control and the most recent soggy baggery of his Grand Old Party.

Videos from John Larson and Joe Courtney  - looking exhausted and using words like ransom – and Rosa DeLauro said it all: “It appears the lunatics have taken over the asylum”.

To read about the happenings at the event, Click Here and read the report from Christine Stuart at CTNewsJunkie.Com

19 September 2013

CT Rollergirls are Back!

Starting up again after the summer hiatus...
Sweet as a Peach in the Middle of a Highway

Ice Cream
Wheel Toss
Great Music
Cool MCs

Fall season begins Saturday, September 21st
CT Sports Center
21 S. Bradley Road
Woodbridge Connecticut

Season starts with a Double Header:
Widowmakers Vs. Bone Crushers

CT Death Quads vs. Ottawa Slaughter Squad

Doors open at 5pm, First Whistle at 6pm
$12 at the door, $10 in advance (online), age 6 and under are free!

Plus: Special prizes and raffles!

13 September 2013

"Isn't It Delicious" at the Bethel Cinema 9/18

Come over to the Bethel Cinema on September 18th at 7:00PM for the big Connecticut premiere of the home-grown feature film "Isn't It Delicious".

Filmed entirely in Connecticut (with the exception of a single looong day in Manhattan) and crewed by many graduates from the CT Film Industry Program, the story explores the often hilarious and heartbreaking efforts of a family matriarch who finds she has little time left to make things right with her many dysfunctional relationships.

The cast features Kathleen Chalfant and Keir Dullea as the parents of adult children Alice Ripley, Nick Stevenson, and Jonah Young, and features notables such as Mia Dillon, Robert Lupone, Malachy McCourt, and Jay Patterson.

A question & answer session will follow the showing, and we expect to see some of the actors in attendance.

Tickets are available HERE for the measly price of $10 each! Get them quick because this screening will definitely sell out fast!

12 September 2013

Students for a New American Politics, a progressive student-run PAC, fundraiser

Students for a New American Politics, a progressive student-run PAC, will be hosting its first event of the academic year on Sunday, September 22. The fundraiser will kick off the 2013-4 election cycle, in which SNAP PAC will mark its 10th year, and will be held from 2-4 pm at Kathleen Corbet’s house: 147 Briscoe Rd., New Canaan, CT. Previous SNAP endorsees Senator Chris Murphy and Congressman Jim Himes will both be in attendance.

SNAP PAC (Students for a New American Politics) is the nation’s largest student-run Political Action Committee, supporting progressive candidates across the nation by sponsoring fellowships for students and young people to work on campaigns.

In 2012, SNAP PAC’s 33 Organizing Fellows worked on 17 campaigns for state ballot initiatives and U.S. House and Senate, including the campaigns of Senators Elizabeth Warren and Chris Murphy and Representatives Ami Bera and Ann McLane Kuster. SNAP PAC’s fundraising efforts make possible the positive experiences of its promising fellows.

SNAP PAC is committed to electing today’s progressive candidates and training tomorrow’s diverse political leaders.


04 September 2013

For Victims of Rape

The Milford Bank to Sponsor a Collection Drive for the Rape Crisis Center of Milford

"When a victim goes to the hospital after an assault, they can participate in an evidence collection procedure which requires them to leave their clothing. Victim Support Packages are brought by an advocate of the Rape Crisis Center so the victim can leave the hospital with dignity. 
This serves as a stepping stone to healthy recovery."
Items needed are:
  •  light weight pants
  • sweat pants
  • elastic-waist shorts
  • sweat shirts
  • t-shirts
  • white low cut socks
  •  underwear all in sizes, especially large and extra-large
  •  flip flops
  • comb/brush set
  • toothbrush/toothpaste set
  • water
  • Gatorade
  • individual tissue packs
  • mall hand sanitizer
  • individual snacks like granola bars or crackers. No nut products please. 
Here are the locations for drop-offs of supplies:

33 Broad Street, Milford, CT 06460 (203) 783-5700
259 Merwin Ave., Milford, CT 06460 (203) 783-5770
205 Bridgeport Ave., Milford, CT 06460 (203) 783-5780
1455 Boston Post Road, Milford, CT 06460 (203) 783-5790
295 Boston Post Road, Milford, CT 06460 (203) 783-3017
And, In Stratford:
2366 Main Street, Stratford, CT 06615 (203) 386-9176
ShopRite Office 250 Barnum Ave Cutoff, Stratford, CT 06614 (203) 378 – 2260

Thank you for your generosity in donating, and Thank You to Milford Bank for sponsoring this collection.

30 August 2013

Delicious for A Cause: Pie Night! (Pizza and Fresh Fruit Pies)

Put this on your Calendar!
A super-casual night of
fun, food, fundraising and friends.

About CMT
Charcot-Marie-Tooth, or CMT, is the most commonly inherited peripheralneuropathy and is found worldwide among all races and ethnic groups.

Discovered in 1886 by three physicians, Jean-Martin Charcot,Pierre Marie, and Howard Henry Tooth, CMT affects an estimated 2.6million people worldwide.

CMT usually isn’t life-threatening and almost never affects brain function. It is not contagious, but it is hereditary and can be passed down from one generation to the next.

Event Organizers:
Shelton residents John and Michele Kekac, along with members of the Southern Connecticut CMT Support and Action Group.

About the CMTA
Our mission ... to support the development of new drugs to treatCMT, to improve the quality of life for people with CMT, and, ultimately,to fnd a cure.
Our vision ... a world without CMT.
Please visit www.cmtausa.org for more information.

26 August 2013

Women's Equality Day

Take Note:
Women are NOT equal in law or civil discourse. Women are barely-released indentured servants, slaves, war-brides, underpaid and disrespected teacher/nurse/mothers. Women are elder-care givers, perpetual clerks, mourners of the dead and givers of Life. Women are cultural memory. Women are NOT EQUAL. 

FROM: Teresa Younger
Executive Director, Permanent Commission on the Status of Women
DATE: Monday, Aug. 26, 2013 
RE: Women’s Equality Day

“Women’s Equality Day raises so many issues beyond the 19th Amendment – beginning with pay inequity, which hurts women’s long-term economic security, retirement assets, and quality of life. We must also ask the critical question: If women are still battling for their full rights every day – even after 93 years of voting rights – how many more generations of capable women will be routinely eliminated from positions of power, elected office, and the “tables” at which real decisions are made? Why does 51 percent of the population hold just 18 percent of Congress and 4 percent of Fortune 500 CEO positions? And why is women’s healthcare – most noticeably reproductive rights – continually under assault, after a century of earning – not “being given” as is often said – working for and earning the right to vote?”

Support the Fast-Food Workers Strike

[click on this title to read full article] Fast-Food Workers Will Strike On August 29 — Here's What You Need to Know 

This link Courtesy of Jere Eaton at http://www.blackct.us/

fast food, workers, will, strike, on, august, 29, —, heres, what, you, need, to, know,

© AP
“On what I’m earning right now you have to choose between paying your rent and eating the next day,” says 32 year-old Christopher Drumgold, a father of two who works at a McDonald’s in Detroit. His story, along with that of thousands of others, is finally coming to the spotlight as employees are mobilizing to say that their wages are unsustainable and unsupportive. According to the Census Bureau, the income threshold level for a family of four to be in poverty is $23,000. Yet the median pay for a fast-food worker is just about $18,500, based on a $9/hour payment — over $4,000 less than the poverty level.

Fast-food workers and labor groups are now calling for a $15/hour minimum wage and many are also asking for opportunities to unionize. Beginning with walk-outs in individual fast-food restaurants last year, the movement has progressed from the local to a national scale. A national strike by fast-food employees is set to take place on August 29.

Here are three important points to keep in mind about the fast-food worker strike.

1. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. This is the wage that many of the strikers receive. While the workers are demanding almost double the federal minimum wage, a request that almost no business person would immediately indulge, here is some more perspective regarding a livable wage.[... more at full article]

2. Fast-food employees are non-unionized. [...more at full article]

3. It is important to recognize the major demographics involved in the fast food industry. Jezebel highlights the main groups: “The average fast food worker is 28 years old. Two thirds of the industry's workforce is comprised of women; their average age is 32, and they are mostly women of color. The majority are supporting children and families on $7.50 minimum wage, no benefits, and few hours. (Few work full-time because the industry cuts work hours at 32 hours so they don't have to give benefits…).” While the economic situation is burdensome in isolation, the other marginalized identities of many fast-food workers have their own set of relevant challenges with daily living. [...more at full article]

Seriously, people. It will raise the cost of each not-so-happy meal by a few cents, but improve all of our lives and livelihood. Boy-and-Girl-cott all fast-food joints on Thursday to prove the point. Eat at your local food truck or small business restaurant instead.

06 August 2013

Recycling Makes Money!

How do you feel about good news? 
Recycling Contract Means New Green Revenue for the City

CRRA to Accept Books, Large Rigid Plastics for Recycling

The Million Residents of CRRA Recycling Towns Can Keep Phone Books, Buckets, Baskets, Bins and Many Other Items out of Trash

The Mayor [Ben Blake] called upon all Milford residents to join his challenge and boost their recycling efforts. 

“By recycling more, we not only support the environment but we also generate new revenue for the City and keep taxes low,” Blake said. “This is truly a win-win.”

Effective immediately, CRRA’s state-of-the-art single-stream recycling facility will accept a number of additional items including
  •  large toys,
  •  beverage crates,
  •  laundry baskets,
  •  recycling bins,
  •  telephone directories,
  •  storage containers and
  •  hard-cover books.
Now you can recycle even more items with CRRA!
Any of these items that fit inside the single-stream barrel can be recycled, provided that
  •  all metals such as bucket handles and wheel axles are separated
     from the plastic items;
  •  all items are rinsed and
  •  covers from hard-cover books are removed and placed in the trash.

A complete breakdown of all items residents of participating communities can recycle, along with instruction on preparing those items for recycling, is on CRRA’s website.

01 August 2013

Good News!

From a fortune cookie:

This is a good thing to remember. Be thankful.
And, don't forget,  tofu is delicious when properly prepared.

PS Try their Salt and Pepper Shrimp as well!

26 July 2013

Milford Farms and Farmers' Markets

Supporting local agriculture is fun

In the early 21st century, Connecticut has been getting back to its family farming “roots.” Environmentalists promote family farming as wise land-use policy, especially in Milford, blessed with prime agricultural soils. Health-conscious “locavores” demand access to food with the freshness, high nutrient levels, and low pesticide burden provided by neighborhood farms.

Finally, economists emphasize small-farm rewards due to employment, land-use diversification, and so-called “external” efficiencies, meaning efficiencies realized from the services nature supplies free of charge. Milford has three summer farm markets: One at Treat’s Farm in Woodmont, one in downtown Milford by the train station, and one in Devon on Route 1 between Naugatuck Avenue and the Washington Bridge. These markets support family farms by giving them new outlets for distribution.
[Editorial insert]
The Downtown Milford Farmers Market
runs every Saturday through October, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., in the parking lot near the River St side of the Milford Railroad Station. All the vendors are self-producing Connecticut farmers. Features Scratch Bakery goodies and breads, locally grown vegetables and herbs, hormone-free meat and poultry, and much more.

The Village of Devon hosts a farmers market on Sundays at the municipal lot at 120 Bridgeport Ave. from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Fresh seafood, fruits, vegetables, flowers and baked goods. WIC and DSNAP vouchers accepted. Live music.

The Woodmont Farmers’ Market at the Robert Treat Farm is held Wednesdays. Located at the corner of New Haven and Merwin avenues, the Woodmont Farmers’ Market will be open every Wednesday, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m., through the end of September, rain or shine.

So far so good, but community-supported agriculture (CSAs) up the ante. They’re small farms using direct distribution. Whether alone or supplemental to farmers’ markets, CSAs are more nitty-gritty than the markets and more fun.

First, “fun.” Typically, the way a CSA works is that members pay a set amount in advance for a summer’s worth of farm product. On a certain day each week, members pick up a basket of food at their CSA, but they don’t know in advance what’s going to be inside. They might get a few items they’ve never heard of, such as bok choy, kohlrabi, or tatsoi, radishes in unlikely shapes and colors, red currants or white eggplant or purple squash they scarcely know how to prepare.

Besides sheer novelty, these unfamiliar species offer way more diversity than a customer ever finds at a grocery store, even counting exotic imports. Then consider the abundance. Flowers and herbs can be cut as bonuses to the weekly basket, and, sometimes, when a particular vegetable or berry crop ripens all at once, members can pick all they want.

Next, “nitty-gritty.” CSAs bring members up close and personal with farmland. Sometimes, as mentioned, members act as farmhands themselves; in any case, when members are at the CSA they see their food growing, not just sitting on shelves. The ecological connections underlying agriculture are evident all around.
Here, the farming history of Milford comes alive. Sun, rain, and the slow progress of the seasons rule. Farm work is more than isolated individuals can do by themselves, so community becomes important, as reflected in the way CSA members share a common schedule and set of basket items; additionally, many CSAs celebrate the end of their year in September with a party for all their members—a feast entrée from the farm, the rest pot-luck.

Originally, America was a nation of farmers. What our forebears called the “symmetry” of nature was all-important: They tried to preserve it with diligence, patience and frugality.

Today we use the term “sustainability.” Regardless of the label, the basic concept is illustrated in every CSA: Human beings are not “above” nature, but embedded in it together with all nature’s creatures.

Our health depends on the health of the land.

25 July 2013

Raise Your SAT Score NOW!

College Placement Firm Expands

Disclosure: The following is a Press Release from First College Placement,  the brainchild of the terrific James Maroney, who is our newest State Rep from Milford. Beyond that, they do wonderful work and increase teens SAT scores to get them into the best possible position for applying to College.
Get your kids enrolled right away!

First Choice College Placement is pleased to announce it will be opening new classroom facilities to serve students in Norwalk, Monroe, Wallingford and their respective surrounding communities. In Norwalk they will be located at 430 Main Avenue, in Monroe at 601 Main Street, and in Wallingford at 950 Yale Avenue. The new facilities are the result of a strategic partnership with All-Star Driver, Connecticut’s leader in driver’s education. 

First Choice College Placement has been providing SAT/ACT test preparation classes in Milford since 1999, and beginning in August, those same test preparation classes will be available at the three All-Star Driver classroom facilities - Norwalk, Monroe and Wallingford.

“Our two businesses serve the same groups of high school juniors and seniors, so it just made sense to utilize these state-of-the-art classrooms when they are available,” said James Maroney, Director of First Choice College Placement LLC. “We employ a variety of technologies to assist students in the classroom, such as white boards, iPads, and recording of each session for review at the student’s convenience. In addition, all classroom sessions are taught by our highly qualified tutors who are graduates of top universities.”

First Choice has worked with a number of recruited athletes to help them get the scores to qualify for Ivy League schools and other academic requirements, along with helping a wide variety of students, including high academic achievers, realize their college-related goals.

“First Choice gave my son direction on studying for the SAT’s, his essay and selecting the right school,” said Peter Graeb of Wallingford. “My son’s ultimate college choice could not have been better for him and the experience was so rewarding we used them again with my younger son, with the same great results.”

For more information, call (800) 575-0950 or email jmaroneyct@gmail.com.  www.firstchoicecollege.com/

 And, yes, James, I am impressed.

22 July 2013

Vaccinating boys plays key role in HPV prevention

Improving vaccination rates against the human papillomavirus (HPV) in boys aged 11 to 21 is key to protecting both men and women, says new research from University of Toronto Professor Peter A. Newman from the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work.

HPV has been linked to anal, penile and certain types of throat cancers in men. Since the virus is also responsible for various cancers in women, vaccinating boys will play a crucial role in reducing cancer rates across the sexes.

“HPV is the single most common sexually transmitted infection,” says Newman, Canada Research Chair in Health and Social Justice. “But now a vaccine is available that can change that and help to prevent the cancers that sometimes result.”

Newman’s research grouped data from 16 separate studies involving more than 5,000 people to analyze rates of HPV vaccine acceptability and examined what factors play a role when determining if young men receive the vaccine.

Vaccinations, particularly new ones, can have difficulty gaining traction among the citizens they were developed to help. This problem can be compounded by a lack of information, misinformation and even conspiracy theories about the efficacy and safety of vaccines. Unfortunately, says Newman, misinformation and unfounded vaccine fears can result in cancer deaths that could have been avoided with a simple vaccination.

Logistical barriers can also stifle the spread and acceptance of new vaccines. Basic impediments like out-of-pocket cost, transportation to a clinic and wait times for the vaccine can contribute to overall low vaccination rates.

The biggest factor affecting male HPV vaccination rates is the lack of a well-established connection linking HPV in men to a life-threatening illness. The correlation between HPV and cervical cancer in women is responsible for popularizing the vaccine among young women. Unfortunately, a similar connection that would motivate males to get the vaccine has not yet been established. That needs to change, says Newman.

“The idea of an HPV vaccine for boys is new in Canada and so far it has had a low adoption rate,” says Newman. “So we need physicians, social workers and public health care institutions to be more active conveying the benefits of the vaccine for boys and the positive role it can help play keeping Canadians safe and healthy.”

The study can be found online and is available without a subscription in the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections.

07 July 2013

Your Right to Vote in America

Voting Rights Act must be restored

Letter to the Editor from Devon Pfeifer of Weston Connecticut
Published in the Connecticut Post Friday, July 5, 2013
[Editorial comment: Shared In Its Entirety except for the removal of ridiculous, self-referential links inserted by CT Post. Large Print used for ease of readership's aging eyes. People died for the Right to Vote.]
The Voting Rights Act, frequently hailed as the single most effective civil rights legislation, was gutted recently by the Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision.

Writing for the majority, Chief Justice John Roberts cited voter registration in Mississippi had grown from 7 percent in 1965 to 76 percent of the African-American population. He shared additional anecdotal information by citing the fact that Selma, Ala., where future Congressman John Lewis was brutally beaten in 1965, has a black mayor. The chief justice also wrote "African-American voter turnout exceeded white voter turnout in five of the six states originally covered by Section 5." Ultimately, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) tossed the Voting Rights Act back to the polarized Congress, telling legislators to fix it. Roberts wrote, "Congress must ensure that the legislation it passes to remedy that problem speaks to current conditions." The decision declared Section 4 unconstitutional because it was based on old voting data that had not been updated since 1975.

The Voting Rights Act was passed by Congress in 1965. It was enacted to restore and protect the right to vote as provided in the 14th and 15th Amendments and was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson.

SCOTUS struck down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, which had identified nine states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas and Virginia, in addition to counties and municipalities including Manhattan, the Bronx and Brooklyn.

These states, counties and municipalities were required under Section 5 (which remains intact, but toothless because of the court's finding on Section 4) "preclearance" by the Department of Justice or a federal court for any/all changes to election law.

In reference to the case of Selma having a black mayor, Southern Poverty Law Center President Richard Cohen points out: "In the history of voting in Alabama, not a single black candidate has been able to defeat a white incumbent or win an open seat in a statewide race. Black office holders in Alabama are confined almost exclusively to minority districts." He added, "While 40 percent of the white voting public cast their ballots for a black president nationwide, only 15 percent of white voters did so in Alabama ... There are still Alabama legislators who talk openly about suppressing the black vote and refer to black voters as `aborigines.'"

Congress passed the Voting Rights Act in 1965, renewed it in 1975 and in 1982, and adopted a new standard for 1985 that provided a way for jurisdictions to get out from under Section 4. In 2006, Congress eliminated the provision for voting examiners. That year Congress held 20 hearings and accumulated 15,000 pages of documents supporting Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. In 2006, "Congress voted nearly unanimously to reauthorize the Voting Rights Act for another 25 years. The vote in the U.S. Senate was 98 to 0 and 390 to 33 in the House of Representatives." -- The Christian Science Monitor.

Between 1999 and 2005, 153 proposed voting changes were withdrawn when the Department of Justice questioned them.
The Voting Rights Act was repeatedly challenged and upheld by the Supreme Court of the United States, until this year.
According to the Brennan Center for Justice (and most news sources) the very same day that the SCOTUS decision was handed down Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said his state would go forward with its plan to redistrict because it no longer needed federal approval. In addition, Texas would implement a voter identification law that had been blocked because it did not meet federal approval. North Carolina announced it would go ahead with a photo ID requirement for voting and eliminate early voting.

A study in 2011 by Paul Gronke of Reed College and Charles Stewart of Massachusetts Institute of Technology titled "Early Voting in Florida" showed that a reduction in the number of early hours for voting lessened the turnout of black voters.

Teaching Tolerance graphed data from The Brennan Center for Justice depicting the percentage of people who lack a government-issued photo ID; the data revealed:
  • 11 percent of all citizens lack a government issued photo ID;
  • 15 percent of low-income voters lack a government issued photo ID;
  • 18 percent of young voters lack a government issued photo ID; and
  • 25 percent of African-American voters lack a government issued photo ID.
The court decision was best summarized by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who took the unusual step of dissenting not just in writing, but from the bench, espousing "For a half century, a concerted effort has been made to end racial discrimination in voting. Thanks to the Voting Rights Act, progress once the subject of a dream has been achieved and continues to be made. The court errs egregiously, by overriding Congress's decision." 
The Voting Right Act must be restored. It is the cornerstone to the home in which our democracy resides.
I look to our delegation of federal legislators, Sens. Blumenthal and Murphy, Reps. Himes, DeLauro and the rest of the Connecticut delegation to champion reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act and bury Jim Crow once more.
[Ed.: OK Readers. Do something about this!]

28 June 2013


[Updated: Image added]

Press release:

I wanted you all to know that we will be having the "Taste of Ramadan" - Fasting from the Abrahamic Traditions - event on July 14th at the Glastonbury Riverfront Community Center at 6:00pm. Please let us know if you would like to join us. We would love to see you there. The breaking of the fast is at Sunset which is 8:25pm - and so the meal will be served at this time. This event is for those who would like to experience the "breaking of the fast" and to hear about the tradition of fasting from the Muslim, Christian and Jewish Perspective. If you would like to include information in your newspaper or speak about it on your Radio or TV show or BLOG that would be awesome!!


For more information please check out :
http://www.muslimcoalitionct.org/taste-of-ramadan.html or please email me at aidamansoor@mcct.us
Hope you can join us.

Thank your for your support and presence!

Wasalaam/With Peace,

Aida Mansoor
Muslim Coalition of Connecticut

26 June 2013


I am Proud to live in Connecticut.
I am Proud to have come from California.

(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy today directed the LGBT Pride flag to be flown over the Governor’s Residence in Hartford in recognition of the Supreme Court decision to overturn the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act.

Pride Flag at the Governor's Residence


For Immediate Release: June 26, 2013
Contact: Juliet Manalan
860-524-7314 (office)
860-770-8298 (cell)

19 June 2013

Senator Blumenthal "Gets It"


Video of Blumenthal’s floor speech is here.
(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) delivered a floor speech on an anti-abortion bill passed yesterday by the House of Representatives. The bill – H.R. 1797 – would prohibit all abortions beyond 20 weeks with very limited exceptions.

I come to the floor today to discuss H.R. 1797. A number of my colleagues, Senators Murray and Boxer, have been here this morning to talk about the bill passed yesterday in the House of Representatives that would prohibit all abortions beyond 20 weeks with very, very limited exceptions. This topic is critically important to the women of Connecticut and our country, and the bill is yet another example, lamentably and regrettably, another example of legislation that feigns concern for women's health when actually it would endanger the lives and well-being of women across this great country.

The bill would take decisions regarding health care away from women and their doctors and would force the doctors to decide between incurring criminal penalties and helping their patients. That choice is unacceptable –professionally and morally. The decision to have an abortion is a serious decision that a woman should make in consultation with her doctor. When those decisions are made later in a pregnancy, they are most often the result of serious health risks to the mother or the discovery that the fetus is not viable.

Political interference is abhorrent and unacceptable in these personal and private decisions, and it violates the constitutional right of privacy. The other scenario in which a woman may seek an abortion later in a pregnancy is due to an inability to access such services earlier – whether due to financial restrictions or lack of access to health care or other extenuating circumstances.  In fact, 58 percent of abortion patients say they would have preferred to have an abortion earlier. Low-income women were more than twice as likely than their wealthier counterparts to be delayed because of financial limitation and difficulty in making arrangements. As politicians, we should not be placing additional restrictions on women in these circumstances.

The House bill blatantly ignores constitutional protections that are vitally necessary to protect the health of women as decided in Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey because these kinds of restrictions place limitations that interfere with constitutional rights and have no place in these personal and very private decisions. The limited exceptions in this bill would require a woman to report a rape or incest to law enforcement or a specific government agency when she is seeking much-needed health care services. Those restrictions affect women when they have been the victims of a crime or face serious health risks and will have no effect on reducing abortions.

That's their purported purpose, to reduce abortions, but that purpose will be in no way served by these restrictions. Victims of incest or rape may be too young or too fearful of retaliation to report to a law enforcement agency. Why create a needless, lawless obstacle to vital health care? We should be working to ensure that women have the ability to access safe and affordable contraception so there are fewer unintended pregnancies in this country. And yet supporters of this bill would also restrict access to contraception and they're the ones who have tried to make it more difficult to get access to the information and services necessary to prevent unintended pregnancies.

We need to do more. Our nation needs to do better to ensure that women have access to preventive and maternal health care so they can be prepared to face the responsibility of pregnancy and parenthood. This bill would do very little, if anything, to actually help women to protect their health care and the health care of their families and so I urge my colleagues to reject any consideration of this ill-intended, and I hope also ill-fated, measure that endangers women's health across the country. I urge my colleagues to focus on the real priorities that face this Congress – job creation and economic recovery, for example – and stop this attack on women's health.


14 June 2013

A Visit to Metropolitan Ave in Williamsburg Brooklyn

There are several reasons to visit Williamsburg NY these days, but there are 2 Major Reasons to go to Metropolitan Avenue this month.

#1 - The Brick This intimate theater (really...like 10 seats in each row) turned out to be airy and enjoyable and staffed by serious-but-fun theater professionals. I went there to see ex-Milford-ite Stephanie Lane perform her "dance-theater show" Lighthouse Triptych.
Lighthouse Triptych is inspired by Virginia Woolf's "To the Lighthouse".  In three stylistically distinct acts interweaving dance, music, and theater, the show follows characters in a family living off the coast of Scotland in the 1910s and '20s, and deals with the passage of time and our perceptions of chaos vs. control.  

Really Really liked it. And I have a Dance Allergy, so that's sayin' something!
Tickets are only $15  Only two shows remain:

Sunday, 6/16 @ 8pm         Wednesday, 6/26 @ 9pm The Brick
579 Metropolitan Ave
(take the L to Lorimer or the G to Metropolitan)

Here is an interview with Steph. She is a superior human being.

#2 - Just down the block (or perhaps Up the Block, I got a little turned around) at 555 Metropolitan Ave is a record store owned and run by my friend Nearly Normal Norman.  It is called Norman's Sound and Vision.

Here is an article from the New York Times about Norman in his previous location near Astor Place in Manhattan. High rents forced him out.

Norman is one of the first people I met when I moved to the Village from San Francisco in 1971. That was a few years ago. We have shared a few best friends, whether they knew it or not, in a location and an era we remember fondly for it's intersection of Science Fiction, Progressive Rock, Street Theater, Punk, Fashion, Jazz, Photography, and passion.

Here is a video on Norman being a curmudgeon.
He sells turntables as well as Vinyl, Blessed Vinyl.
Go buy some.