Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Not Helping The Cause Of Blondes


Elisabeth Hasselbeck thinks a lot of older lesbians would have turned out straight ... if they could only land a man.

The co-host of "The View" said older women who have lead heterosexual lives are choosing same-sex partners because men their age are chasing younger women.

"All the older men are going for younger women, leaving the women with no one," Hasselbeck said on her estrogen-soaked gabfest, "The View".

Joy Behar, a co-host of the show, immediately blasted the 33-year-old, calling her late-blooming lesbian claim "ridiculous."

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Are We Talking About Race or Economics?

Last night, I watched a discussion on the Chris Matthews show about a recent quote from Jim Webb in the Wall Street Journal:
Those who came to this country in recent decades from Asia, Latin America
and Africa do not suffer discrimination from our government, and in fact have been frequently the beneficiaries of special government programs.  The same cannot be said of many hard-working white Americans-- including those whose roots in American go back more than 200 years.   Beyond our continuing obligation to assist those African Americans still in need, government-directed diversity programs should end.


On the heels of that reporting, comes a piece from the Wapo, which very now and then stumbles onto something-- although this time, the revelation comes from a financial reporter-- "Color of Money" columnist Michelle Singletary:
Sherrod said that while working with the white farmer, she realized that the social war we’ve been having isn’t about race but economic inequity.

“Y’all, it’s about poor versus those who have,” Sherrod said in her speech. “It’s really about those who have versus those who don’t, you know. And they could be black; and they could be white; they could be Hispanic. And it made me realize then that I needed to work to help poor people — those who don’t have access the way others have.”

John Aravosis from Americablog recently blogged  these stunning facts about the vanishing middle class:
• For the first time in U.S. history, banks own a greater share of residential housing net worth in the United States than all individual Americans put together.
• 83 percent of all U.S. stocks are in the hands of 1 percent of the people.
• 61 percent of Americans "always or usually" live paycheck to paycheck, which was up from 49 percent in 2008 and 43 percent in 2007.
• 66 percent of the income growth between 2001 and 2007 went to the top 1% of all Americans.
• 36 percent of Americans say that they don't contribute anything to retirement savings.
• A staggering 43 percent of Americans have less than $10,000 saved up for retirement.    
• Approximately 21 percent of all children in the United States are living below the poverty line in 2010 - the highest rate in 20 years.
• Despite the financial crisis, the number of millionaires in the United States rose a whopping 16 percent to 7.8 million in 2009.

It seems that we have a "new" form of "racism" in this country-- the treatment of the have-nots by those who do have.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Obtuse Angle

The day after walking out of her own campaign event when reporters were offered an opportunity to ask questions, Nevada GOP Senate nutjob nominee Sharron Angle on Thursday responded to a question from a reporter . . . to tell him she wasn’t answering the question.

At the beginning of the press conference, Angle's spokeswoman had told reporters that the candidate would take questions as long as those questions were related to the topic of Angle's event, which was focused on reducing taxes on a estates of multimillionaires.

When a reporter flouted the spokeswoman's strictures, Angle refused to answer. "Today we’re concentrating on one thing," she said.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Palin Failin' Geography

Perhaps geographically-challenged Sarah Palin should reconsider that Discovery Channel series.  On the heels of mis-identifying Kodiak Island as the largest island in the U.S. (that would actually be Hawaii), Sister Sarah has goofed again.  Here's what popped up on her Twitter feed today:



The problem? "Sweettooth" doesn't exist on Denali (aka, Mount McKinley).  She might mean "Sugartooth," but even then, climbers who know the area are scratching their heads. "Sugartooth" is a multi-day, highly technical climb on sheer rock.  The Alaskan outdoor blogosphere is understandably taking Palin to task for 1) claiming to be an Alaskan mountain woman without even knowing the names of the places she's going, and 2) exploiting their state in a selfish bid for spotlight.

Of course, she might "refudiate" her tweet.  But for me, it's just more proof of what a blithering idiot this woman is.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Banks Trying To Find A New Pound Of Flesh

Card issuers have long found their bread and butter in penalty fees and high interest rates paid by consumers who carry a balance. But that business model has been upended by the legions of consumers who were overwhelmed by debt when the recession hit, forcing the industry to write off billions of dollars in loans. In addition, new federal laws limit how much card companies can charge risky customers.

Now, frugal-minded consumers are charging less on their credit cards, paying down their balances and steering clear of penalty fees.  "The only true deadbeat customer is someone who has a card and never uses it," said Curtis Arnold, who runs the credit comparison site CardRatings.com. "Just having good credit alone in today's market is not enough for that customer to be profitable."

In a lawsuit filed last month, outdoor retailer Gander Mountain, based in Minnesota, claimed that its credit card partner, World Financial Network, was turning down shoppers with nearly perfect credit scores of 800 or above. Gander Mountain said the reason was that the issuer said it could not make money from those clients, which World Financial Network estimated as about a quarter of new applicants. That created "a negative customer experience" that could drive shoppers away, the suit said. Both Gander Mountain and the issuer's parent company, Alliance Data, declined to comment on the suit.

If you have outrage to spare, see the Wapo article for more details.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A New Angle On Campaigning

Nutjob teabagger candidate Sharron Angle invited local media to attend a press event in Reno Wednesday morning, but when members of the media tried to ask the candidate questions she didn't answer.

The Nevada Senate candidate staged the even to publicly signed a pledge to repeal the estate tax-or "death tax"- if she's elected, made a few brief statements and then ran away with several members of the local media in tow when reporters started asking her questions. 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Andrew Breitbart: New Internet Assassin

If you want a rundown on all the shady "reporting" we've seen from Andrew Breitbart (the scumbag who did the hitjob on Shirley Sherrod), then check out this posting from Media Matters.  Breitbart was also instrumental in creating the fake Acorn scandal earlier this year.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Hitler Hates That His Weed Was Stolen

GOP And Tax Cuts: Let The Middle Class Eat Asphalt

I've been reading more than a few articles recently on "peasant mentality"-- the kind of thinking where average people worship the very folks who are cheating them and taking food out of their mouth.  As they say-- a good peasant is loyal, simpleminded, and full of misdirected anger.

Along those lines comes this Wall Street Journal story-- how paved roads, normally an upscale symbol of achievement in rural America, are being torn up and replaced with gravel or other rough surfaces as counties struggle with tight budgets and dwindling revenue.

In Michigan, at least 38 of the 83 counties have converted some asphalt roads to gravel in recent years. Last year, South Dakota turned at least 100 miles of asphalt road surfaces to gravel. Counties in Alabama and Pennsylvania have begun downgrading asphalt roads to cheaper chip-and-seal road, also known as "poor man's pavement." Some counties in Ohio are simply letting roads erode to gravel.

"I'd rather my kids drive on a gravel road than stick them with a big tax bill," said Bob Baumann, as he sipped a bottle of Coors Light at the Sportsman's Bar Café and Gas.

But God forbid that we ever consider letting the Bush tax cuts expire!  It's amazing how uninformed these people are-- and why they don't realize that  when you give money to the rich, they simply just keep it and never give it back.   In the meantime, the rich sit on piles of tax money while the peasant folk do without paved roads . . .

Monday, July 19, 2010

Wonkette Holds A Nasty Spot In Her Heart For Darth Cheney

Gotta love the Wonkette-- every now and then she comes up with a nicely smart-assed classic.  Commenting today on Dick Cheney's recent medical procedure:

Some doctor man wrote about Dick Cheney’s Polly Pocket robot heart in the New York Times, and it turns out Dick Cheney no longer has a pulse, though he is stubbornly still alive. Dick Cheney’s blood now just flows continually, like the River Styx. He doesn’t need your lowly “pumping!” Cheney will probably be “urged to wear bracelets or other identifications to alert emergency room doctors” as to why he has no pulse, as it probably won’t be the first reason that comes to mind.

But here is the good news:  [Cheney's doctor] said he had implanted a total of 170 such pumps and of those, 24 were in patients 65 and older.  Nine of the 24 have died [and] six of the 15 survivors [eventually] received heart transplants. The remaining nine are living with the pump.

The odds are still in our favor.

Benny's Vatican Still Protecting Itself Instead of Children

The Catholic Church finally released its updated rules for dealing with clergy sex abuse, and if you were expecting anything a bit less neanderthal or misogynistic than the usual Pope Benny bullshit, then you were dead wrong.  And in a nice change of pace, the Duchess Dowd of the Royal House of the Times got it right-- so I'll just quote from her recent op-ed:

The church still believes in its own intrinsic holiness despite all evidence to the contrary. It thinks it’s making huge concessions on the unstoppable abuse scandal when it’s taking baby steps.

The [Catholic Church] did not issue a zero-tolerance policy to defrock priests after they are found guilty of pedophilia; it did not order bishops to report every instance of abuse to the police; it did not set up sanctions on bishops who sweep abuse under the rectory rug; it did not eliminate the statute of limitations for abused children; it did not tell bishops to stop lobbying legislatures to prevent child-abuse laws from being toughened.

There is no moral awakening here. The cruelty and indecency of child abuse once more inspires tactical contrition. All the penitence of the church is grudging and reactive. Church leaders are merely as penitent as they need to be to protect the institution.

Stupefyingly, the new Vatican document also links raping children with ordaining women as priests, deeming both “graviora delicta,” or grave offenses. Clerics who attempt to ordain women can now be defrocked.

Letting women be priests — which should be seen as a way to help cleanse the church and move it beyond its infantilized and defensive state — is now on the list of awful sins right next to pedophilia, heresy, apostasy and schism.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Poachers Kill Last Female White Rhino In Kruger National Park

Fears are growing for the survival of the rhinoceros as the last female in the popular Krugersdorp game reserve near Johannesburg was killed, bleeding to death after having its horn hacked off by poachers.

Wildlife officials say poaching for the prized horns has now reached an all-time high. "Last year, 129 rhinos were killed for their horns in South Africa. This year, we have already had 136 deaths," said chief game ranger Japie Mostert.



The gang used tranquilizer guns and a helicopter to bring down the nine-year-old rhino cow. Her distraught calf was moved to a nearby estate where it was introduced to two other orphaned white rhinos.

Wanda Mkutshulwa, a spokeswoman for South African National Parks, said poaching was rife in the 1,500-hectare Kruger park. Five men had been arrested there in the past week alone, four of whom were caught with two bloodied rhino horns, AK-47 assault rifles, bolt-action rifles and an axe.

Rhino horn consists of compressed keratin fiber which is similar to hair.  Continued high demand for rhino horn in many Asian cultures (where it is used as a fundamental ingredient in traditional medicines) drives poaching and illegal trafficking in Rhino horns.

Tiger Drops the "F" Bomb At The British Open

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Tomb Raider: Venezuela Edition

Venezuela has exhumed the remains of 19th century independence hero Simon Bolivar and will test them to see if he was poisoned by enemies in Colombia.  President Hugo Chavez rejects the traditional account that Bolivar, a brilliant Venezuelan military tactician who freed much of South America from centuries of Spanish rule, died of tuberculosis in Colombia in 1830.

He insists Bolivar was murdered by Colombian general Francisco de Paula Santander and Venezuela's newly inaugurated state forensics laboratory is taking as its first case the death of the hero some call Latin America's George Washington.  Analysts have warned that revisiting the case could put more pressure on strained ties between the neighbors.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Racist Teabaggers: Update

A reader felt that my teabagger sign from last Tuesday did not contain an overt streak of racism in it.  The two signs below sure do:

No Shred Of Human Decency Left At BP (If There Ever Was Any)

What is with these pricks from BP?  It's bad enough that they have no regard for the environment or the livelihoods of those living and working around the Gulf of Mexico.  Now, it comes to light that they pressured the Scottish government to release a terrorist who murdered innocent Americans.  From the NY Post:

The oil  giant BP faced a new furor on Thursday as it confirmed that it had lobbied the British government to conclude a prisoner-transfer agreement that the Libyan government wanted to secure the release of the only person ever convicted for the 1988 Lockerbie airliner bombing over Scotland, which killed 270 people, 189 of them Americans.

The admission came after American legislators, grappling with the controversy over the company’s disastrous Gulf of Mexico oil spill, called for an investigation into BP’s actions in the case of the freed man, Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi.

The former Libyan intelligence agent was released and allowed to return to Libya last August after doctors advised the Scottish government that he was likely to die within three months of advanced prostate cancer. But nearly a year later, he remains alive, and free, in the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

NY Senator Chuck Schumer told reporters that BP should freeze its operations in Libya because it “should not be allowed to profit on this deal at the expense of the victims of terrorism.” 

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Bristol and Levi Back On The Reality Circuit

I just love Wonkette's take on the Bristol Palin-Levi Johnston engagement news:

There is literally nothing hotter than talking to your dimwit ex about who is required to care for your mistake-baby at what times; it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that, when the math and calendaring overwhelmed their feeble brains, they just fell to fuckin’. I bet grandma is psyched!

Such a classy move, too-- making the announcement via US magazine, and pimping your child for the cover photo.   But don't forget now-- just because Mom and Dad can exploit their child doesn't mean you mean nasty Liberal commie bastards can!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Chupacabras Rear Their Ugly Heads Once Again

Chupacabras (literally "goat suckers") are legendary creatures said to roam Mexico and parts of southern United States.  Chupacabras were first characterized as "Latino bigfoots"-- but as more sightings are documented in incidents where livestock are killed and torn to pieces, the existence of the chupacabra has slowly gained credibility.  When one was last sighted in Texas in 2008, it was portrayed as either a cross between a dog and a wolf or perhaps a mangey coyote.

There have been many stories about these unidentified animals over the last several years (see 2006 clip below).  But the chupacabras are in the news again after two strange animals were killed recently in Granbury, Texas.  Animal Control Office Frank Hackett described the animal involved in the most recent sighting: "All I know is, it wasn't normal.  It was ugly, real ugly. I'm not going to tell no lie on that one."  DNA testing is being done to determine the animal's origin.


Monday, July 12, 2010

IMF Economists Think We Can Do With A Little Less Social Security

Last week, the IMF told the United States that it needs to start getting its budget deficit down. It put cutting Social Security at the top of the steps that the country should take to achieve deficit reduction. Dean Baker, contributor to the HufPost, calls out the IMF on its hypocritical lecturing on two counts.

First, the IMF deserves a substantial share of the blame for the economic crisis that gave us big deficits in the first place. The IMF is supposed to oversee the operations of the international financial system, but failed miserably in sounding the alarms about the dangers of the real estate bubble in the U.S. While the IMF has no problem warning about retired workers getting too much in Social Security benefits, it apparently could not find its voice when the issue was the junk securities from Goldman Sachs or Citigroup that helped to fuel the housing bubble.

The collapse of this bubble not only sank the world economy, it also destroyed the main source of wealth and savings (home equity) of many near-retirees for whom the IMF wants to cut Social Security.  Maybe the IMF doesn't have access to data on housing prices and wealth, because if they did, it's hard to believe that they would advocate further harm to some of the main victims of their policy failure.

The other reason that the IMF's call for cutting Social Security benefits is infuriating is the incredible hypocrisy involved. The average Social Security benefit is just under $1,200 a month and no one can collect benefits until the age of 62. By contrast, many IMF economists first qualify for retirement benefits in their early 50s.  After turning 51 or 52, these hypocrite economists can begin drawing benefits of more than $100,000 a year.

This means that we have IMF economists, who failed disastrously at their jobs, who can draw six-figure pensions at age 52, telling ordinary workers that they have to take a cut in their $14,000 a year Social Security benefits that they can't start getting until age 62.   Shut your f**king trap, bastards!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Somali Militants To Ugandans: Watch Football And You Die

A Somali Islamist militant movement has claimed responsibility for a trio of bombings that killed at least 74 people at two venues in the Ugandan capital where crowds had gathered to watch the World Cup final.

"And the best of men have promised and they have delivered," said an Arabic statement issued by Al-Shabaab's press office. "Blessed and exalted among men -- (taking) full responsibility ...We wage war against the 6,000 collaborators; they have received their response."  The 6,000 is an apparent reference to African Union peacekeepers in Somalia. Uganda contributes troops to the peacekeeping effort.

"We are behind the attack because we are at war with them," Al-Shabaab spokesman Ali Mohamoud Rage told reporters. "We had given warning to the Ugandans to refrain from their involvement in our country. We spoke to the leaders and we spoke to the people and they never listened to us."

"If you want to fight, why don't you attack soldiers or military installations instead of fighting innocent people watching football?" said Ugandan President Museveni, while on a visit to a rugby sports center where two of the blasts occurred.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Another Racist Diatribe From Gibson Caught On Tape

RadarOnline.com has today posted audio of Mel Gibson's racist outburst--  a (not atypical) story about the "Apocalypto" director that has been making the rounds on the internet the past week, and which recently prompted his agent to drop him as  a client.

The tape begins with Mel berating Oksana (his soon-to-be ex-wife, with whom he has an 8-month old daughter) about her breast feeding because she has implants.   “So you’re not lying to me about fake tits?” he says. “I never have,” she answers.  Gibson gets enraged and tells Oksana that she lied to him. When she denies it, he says about her breasts: “They look ridiculous. Get rid of them why don’t you.”

But Oksana tells him it’s none of his business and Mel rants, “Keep them if you want, they look stupid. Keep  ‘em if you want. Look stupid. See if i give a fuck. They look like a Vegas whore. And you go around sashaying in your tight clothes. I won’t stand for that anymore.”  Oksana answers that she doesn’t walk around in tight clothes.

“You go out in public and it’s a fucking embarrassment to me. You look like a fucking bitch in heat. And if you get raped by a pack of niggers it will be your fault. Alright? Because you provoked it. You are provocatively dressed all the time with your fake boobs that you feel you have to show off. I don’t like it. I don’t want that woman. I don’t want  you. I don’t trust you. I don’t love you.”

Gibson is also under investigation for domestic violence by the L.A. County Sherriff’s Department. Oksana reported that Gibson punched her on January 6, knocked out two of her teeth and was violent with her on several occasions, according to the report on RadarOnline.com.  Oksana taped Mel because she was afraid for her life after he threatened to kill her.  On another part of the tape Mel tells her: "I am going to come and burn the fucking house down... but you will blow me first."

Mel has not commented publicly since this story broke last week.  He berates the mother of his child-- calling her a “whore” and a “cunt” and calls a Latino worker a “wetback.”

Friday, July 9, 2010

Update: Octopus Oracle Tips Spain For Final

Sunday’s World Cup final seems too close to call-- but not for the world’s new favorite psychic animal.  Paul the Octopus, from Oberhausen, Germany, picked Spain for the second time in a row on live TV after correctly predicting his home country would be eliminated in the semi-finals.   In the now familiar routine, two boxes were lowered into Paul's tank, each containing a mussel and the flags of the two opposing teams.  The tentacled tipster went straight to the Spanish box, wrenched open the lid and gobbled the tasty morsel.

This new development no doubt increased Germans' appetite for octopus sushi nationwide.  Paul now stands 6-0 for the tournament, having correctly predicted the outcome of every German game, including its upset at the hands of Serbia in the group stage.  The psychiuc cephalopod even drew death threats for picking against Germany in the semi-finals, though Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luiz Rodriguez Zapatero has promised the cephalopod state protection.

Soccer Star: "I'm Not The Father Of Your Baby, Alpo Bitch!"

The missing former lover of a top Brazilian football star was strangled and then fed to dogs, police say.  25-year-old Eliza Samudio  was a former girlfriend of Bruno Fernandes, goalkeeper for Flamengo, Brazil's most popular club.  The Flamengo captain is married with two kids-- and Samudio had claimed before her disappearance that the married footballer was the father of her baby.

Fernandes handed himself into police after a warrant was issued for his arrest over her disappearance nearly a month ago.  Fernandes has denied any wrongdoing, and said he has a "clear conscience".  But police say a teenage cousin of Fernandes has given evidence that the goalkeeper was involved in her kidnap and suspected murder.  More details at the Beebs . . .

Thursday, July 8, 2010

And Justice For None

An unarmed African-American man held face down in a San Francisco subway station was fatally shot in the back by a transit cop on New Year's Day 2009.  Oscar Grant had committed no crime; he was immobilized on the ground by another cop, who held his knee against the young man's neck.  Suddenly, Officer Johannes Mehserle pulls himself upright-- and drawing his weapon shoots Grant dead on the spot.  Officer Mehserle claimed that he accidentally drew his gun (located on his right side) thinking it was his taser (which he kept on his left).  Even if you believe that story, use of a taser was totally uncalled for-- was Mehserle really going to put a jolt through Grant as he lay prone on the floor for no reason at all?  The entire incident was caught on video;  seemingly a slam-dunk case of police brutality. 



But Oscar Grant was African-American and the officers were white.  Police lawyers were able to get the trial relocated to Los Angeles county, where prosecutors have not won a murder conviction in a police shooting since 1983.   Not a single juror was African-American.  After six hours of deliberation over two days, the jury rejected a verdict of second-degree murder and found Mehserle guilty of only involuntary manslaughter.  The maximum sentence Mehserle could receive is four years.  Four years for a cold-blooded killing with racial overtones.  If there is no justice for Oscar Grant, how can any of us expect justice?

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

20,000 (Soccer) Leagues Under The Sea

A "psychic" octopus in Germany, which appears to have correctly predicted every World Cup game involving the national team so far, has picked Spain over Germany in the semi-final.

Paul, from the Sea Life Aquarium in the western city of Oberhausen, chose a mussel from a jar with the Spanish flag instead of one with a German flag.

The two-year-old cephalopod has become a national celebrity.  According to his owners, he has a record of predicting German results.  He correctly predicted all five of the team's previous World Cup games - including a shock defeat by Serbia in the group stages.  His prognosis ahead of the World Cup semi-final was broadcast live on German TV.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Doesn't Evolution Normally Punish The Stupid?

A panda at the Beijing Zoo accidentally crushed her new cub to death after abandoning its twin, Chinese media reported.  Eight-year-old Yinghua gave birth to female twin cubs but the mother nursed only one of them-- the abandoned cub was sent away to a research facility.

But tragedy struck soon thereafter-- the new mother, still clumsy and inexperienced, accidentally squashed her remaining cub to death in a corner of the pen after hearing it crying for milk. 

Why do we keep trying to perpetuate such a fucking stupid species of animal?  If they're so inept as to sit on their own children, shouldn't we try to focus resources on something else-- like  cleaning up massive oil spills or or feeding hungry humans?

Friday, July 2, 2010

Intellectual Torture Over The "Torture" Word

First, there was a study from the Kennedy School of Government that found that America's major newspapers, after decades of reliably and accurately referring to waterboarding as torture, suddenly stopped doing so around 2002, when America started waterboarding people like it was going out of style.  Adam Serwer of the American Prospect added his comments:
"As soon as Republicans started quibbling over the definition of torture, traditional media outlets felt compelled to treat the issue as a "controversial" matter, and in order to appear as though they weren't taking a side, media outlets treated the issue as unsettled, rather than confronting a blatant falsehood."

Incredibly, the New York soon thereafter admitted to being chickenshit over the issue-- but tried to rationalize their way out of it (quoted by Yahoo News):
"As the debate over interrogation of terror suspects grew post-9/11, defenders of the practice (including senior officials of the Bush administration) insisted that it did not constitute torture.  When using a word amounts to taking sides in a political dispute, our general practice is to supply the readers with the information to decide for themselves. Thus we describe the practice vividly, and we point out that it is denounced by international covenants and in American tradition as a form of torture."

What some people are forgetting is that waterboarding wouldn't be considered newsworthy if it weren't generally accepted as torture to begin with.   For years, the New York Times wrote stories about waterboarding specifically because it was torture (and actually used the term "torture") but it abandoned its journalistic principles because some dipshit president tried to change the rules midstream.  Isn't this what we expect journalists to do-- call elected officials on their BS?

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Teabaggers Continue Their GOP Takeover

Teabaggers took over the Idaho Republican State Convention and predictably usurped the platform process.  Idaho GOPers now officially support the repeal of the 17th Amendment (the direct election of U.S. senators).

Getting rid of paper money so that everything can be purchased in precious metals,  is also a priority-- "Let free Idahoans pay taxes, and other fees due to the State, County and City in silver and or gold in any form."  This only applies to “free” Idahoans, not slaves, to be clear.

The platform also called for marriage to be limited to a “naturally born” man and woman, going the extra mile beyond conventional gay marriage bans and making sure to exclude transgendered folks, as well.

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