Another lovely mid-Autumn radio program early on a Saturday morning. It's cold out there! It's pretty cold in here, too!
R. Paul recalled finally leaving the Republic of Viet Nam permanently 44 years ago today. He recounted the observed corruption of military and civilians over there, which made it such a lovely experience. Getting shot at was just icing on the cake of that year spent in a Joseph Conrad novel.
We related the story of 13 year old Skylar Davis of Anderson County in Kansas. Skylar likes a certain over-the-shoulder bag, it has a floral pattern on it. He brings that bag to school every day. Apparently this is a designer bag, and someone at the school he goes to didn't like him wearing this bag to school. That someone wasn't another kid, it was the school's Assistant Principal! Skylar was told to remove the bag, he refused, so the Assistant Principal suspended him. Skylar's mother is outraged, calling this action against her son discriminatory. Skylar seems to be defiant about the attempt to pry that bag away from him, he really likes it and sees it as an expression of who he is. We figure that this is a case of some middle school bureaucrat feeling the need to react against an adolescent's slight non-conformity. The Assistant Principal must think that Skylar doesn't look butch enough with that designer bag draped across him. I bet that if the bag had the logo of some large corporation on it, or had some military symbol on it, or something like that the school bureaucrats wouldn't bat an eye. But a floral pattern on the designer bag makes it just a little too much like a purse for some. But they'd never tell one of the 13 year old female students that they couldn't carry a bag like that to school. Clearly this is discrimination based on gender, or the Assistant Principal's rigid concept of gender. Hell, in Greater New York you see males walking around with bags similar to what Skylar likes to wear every day. Kansas, should be glad that Skylar is helping them to catch up.
In the better news department we talked about the United States Senate has passed a bill outlawing discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people. This is pretty amazing. One of the supporters of the bill is openly lesbian Senator Tammy Baldwin. Pickles of the North and I know her cousin. The bill has been sent to the House of Representatives, where the Republican majority is expected to resist doing the right thing with it. R. Paul went on about the early times of the first ever gay right legislation which was introduced in to the New York City Council as Intro 475.
We talked about a couple of doomsday scenarios that came up over the past fortnight. One was yet another warning about an asteroid that might hit the Earth decades from now, except that it's a statistically very unlikely event. The other is a prediction that the Higgs boson, recently confirmed by the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, will one day have a Higgs field produce a different vacuum from what's produced now, and this will sweep through the universe as we know it at the speed of light totally obliterating everything. But this variation in the Higgs field is such an unlikely scenario that it is not something anyone will have to worry about for around the next 10100 years, which is to say that no one has to worry about it ever.
We also talked about the PNB meeting going on in Houston, Texas this weekend. There the Directors of the Pacifica Foundation, which owns WBAI and four other radio stations, will look at and deliberate on the applicants for a PSOA where some entity would essentially take over the operation of radio station WBAI and, in exchange for paying the station's bills, would have pretty much complete control over all aspects of WBAI, including programming.
We're hoping that WBAI's recent successful Fall 'thon will help to convince a majority of the Directors to pass on getting into a PSOA with some other organization, and that WBAI will be given a chance to improve and become self sustaining. You can listen to the PNB meeting here. After the weekend's meetings are over you can still listen to the archives there.
In a really momentous announcement we let everyone know that R. Paul now has the tremendous total of 16 followers on Twitter.