Tag Archives: Texas

Current Event Cat of the Day: Mexican Execution

Current Event Cat - Mexican Execution

Texas executed a Mexican citizen on Wednesday night – but not the old fashioned way along the border with a shotgun, a barbed wire fence and a redneck militia.

Convicted cop killer Edgar Tamayo Arias, 46, a Mexican citizen, was executed by the state of Texas despite national and international outcry and warnings that his death could damage relations between the US and Mexico. Among those objecting to the Mexican execution were a former Texas governor, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, and the entire country of Mexico.

“I want to be clear: I have no reason to doubt the facts of Mr. Tamayo’s conviction, and as a former prosecutor, I have no sympathy for anyone who would murder a police officer,” John Kerry wrote. “This is a process issue I am raising because it could impact the way American citizens are treated in other countries.”

Tamayo, who was in the U.S. illegally, was convicted in the killing of Guy Gaddis, a Houston police officer, in 1994 and sentenced to death. Fast-forward twenty years and it’s execution time!

But the execution almost didn’t go though. It was delayed by more than three hours as the U.S. Supreme Court considered appeals to keep 46-year-old Edgar Tamayo from the Texas death chamber. Tamayo’s lawyers argued he had been deprived of his rights as a foreign citizen as he was not promptly advised of his right to consular help. They also pulled the old mentally-ill and brain-damaged claim, saying that the Mexican only had an IQ of 67. But the last-ditch appeal failed and the cop killer was put to death by lethal injection at the state penitentiary in Huntsville, near Houston.

Mexican Citizen ExecutionThe Mexican government was not impressed with America’s handling of the case, saying in a statement this week it “strongly opposed” the execution and said failure to review Tamayo’s case and reconsider his sentence would be “a clear violation by the United States of its international obligations.”

But Texas doesn’t care about sh*t like that. They only care about the death penalty.

“It doesn’t matter where you’re from,” Governor Rick Perry’s spokeswoman said. “If you commit a despicable crime like this in Texas, you are subject to our state laws, including a fair trial by jury and the ultimate penalty.”

Well, one less illegal immigrant I guess.

Via: The Guardian

Leave a Comment

Rep. Louie Gohmert Joined Congress to Prevent Single Moms from Receiving Welfare Checks

Louie Gohmert Congressional Republicans

Some people become politicians for noble causes: to help the less fortunate, to give their constituents a voice, to eliminate corruption. But not Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert. He became a congressman to stop single mothers from getting welfare checks.

The Texas Republican revealed last Thursday that he went into politics because he was so outraged that single women were having as many as 15 babies and getting welfare checks.

“If it weren’t for the policies in this War on Poverty declared 50 years ago, it may well be that I would not have ever run for Congress,” Gohmert said during a speech on the House floor. “Because what got me thinking about it first as a state district judge back in Texas was seeing more and more young women, single women coming before me — single moms — charged with welfare fraud.”

Apparently women in Texas discovered that “the government will send you a check for every baby you have out of wedlock” and decided to start popping them out Irish Catholic style.

“One women had had 15 kids, didn’t even know where they all were, that was the most that I ever dealt with,” Gohmert explained. “It began to really eat away with me that in the 60s the federal government, desiring to help poor moms who were dealing with deadbeat dads, decided, ‘We’ll help, we’ll give a check for every child you can have out of wedlock.’”

Because single mothers are a bigger threat to America than terrorist babies, Louie Gohmert is a big supporter of implementing a nationwide policy called a “family cap” which aims to cut off additional support to children born out of wedlock and currently on welfare.

Since Gohmert is such a fan of limiting the number of children single mothers can get welfare checks from, he must be a huge proponent of effective sex education, accessible contraception and abortion, right? WRONG. Instead, single mothers should practice Gohmert-approved abstinence only behaviour. And if they don’t, who cares? It’s their children that will suffer the punishment.

Via: Raw Story 

Leave a Comment

The Rob Ford Reality Show, Ford Nation, is Cancelled… And Other News

Rob Ford Nation

Times are tough for Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and his Ford Nation.

Just one day after having his mayoral powers stripped by the Toronto City Council, Sun News Network cancelled his reality show Ford Nation after just one episode. Ford Nation’s debut episode (and I guess the series finale) aired on Monday night and featured the crack-smoking mayor and his brother Doug, who sits on the city council. The hour long show was basically just the Fords going back and forth about the media’s obsession with the mayor and his crack-smoking, p*ssy eating, drunk-driving ways. But even that was not enough to draw more than 155,000 viewers and Ford Nation was quickly sacked. Hollywood Reporter

Burger King IndiaIndians are about to get a little fatter and a little more American. Burger King has just announced that it will be expanding its franchises into India. Ever since the first McDonald’s opened in 1996, fast food places have been popping up all over the country – and Burger King wants a piece of the action. “India is a market with huge potential for Burger King restaurants and we have the chance to offer the unique Burger King brand proposition to its consumers with our own local twist to the menu,” said Elias Diaz Sese, president of BK AsiaPac Pte. Ltd. No word yet on whether the fast food giant will sell its signature Whopper or other beef burgers. When McDonalds broke into the market they dropped beef and pork from menus, in keeping with the religious practices of Hindus and Muslims, and added such India specific items: the McVeggie sandwich and the Spicy Paneer Wrap. Authentic Indian food – yum! Wall Street Journal

Afghan DealIs the war in Afghanistan coming to an end? No, it’s the war that never ends, it just goes on and on my friend, some people started fighting it not knowing what it was, and they’ll continue fighting it forever just because…no one is pulling out the troops – not even after 2014. The US and Afghanistan have reached a security agreement about life after 2014. Well, they haven’t so much as reached an agreement as they’ve agreed to the text of a security agreement – the real thing still needs to be drafted up and officially accepted by Afghan leaders and the Afghan parliament.  The approval of the security agreement would pave the way for a small number of Americans troops to remain on the ground in Afghanistan beyond 2014 – as long as they are given immunity from Afghan courts. Otherwise, they are out of there! But according to White House spokesman Jay Carney, these remaining soldiers would have a very limited mission. “The war in Afghanistan will end next year, as the president has promised,” Carney said. “The combat mission will be over.” CNN

Texas Abortion LawThe Texas abortion law is here to stay… for now. The U.S. Supreme Court refuses to stop a restrictive abortion law in Texas, meaning the law, which opponents say have led more than a third of the state’s clinics to stop providing abortions, will remain in effect until a planned appeal hearing in January. “This is good news for the unborn and for women,” Texas Gov. Rick Perry said after the decision. Minus the women with unwanted pregnancies… The restrictive law, which will effectively close abortion clinics in much of the state, has sparked a fierce debate – mainly between Gov. Rick Perry and State Senator Wendy Davis who filibustered the bill for 11 hours in June. USA Today

SmartiesSmarties are the new gateway drug – or Rockets if you’re from Canada. A third grader was suspended after he crushed up some Smarties/Rockets into powder and snorted them. Nine-year-old Demitri Santiago got the idea from watching another classmate sniffing candy powder. The third grader’s mom chalked up the incident to childhood curiosity but also wants to warn other parents about the dangerous new trend. “Anything going up the nose and especially candy – anything is terribly dangerous,” she said. Kids today… 11Alive News

Leave a Comment

3-D Guns Are Now A Thing… And Other News

3-D Gun

A Texas company says it has made the first metal gun using a 3-D printer, paving the way for rednecks everywhere to start creating their own firearms. Well this makes me feel very safe.

The Austin company, Solid Concepts, created almost all the parts of the 3-D gun via direct metal laser sintering – whatever that means. While some are concered over the emerging ability to build your own gun, I say c’mon, it’s Texas! You don’t need a 3-D printer – just buy a gun on the internet or take one from a gun show parking lot or find one in your cereal box. Mental patients and felons don’t have time to sit around and assemble a 3-D gun, let alone pay $20k for a 3-D printer – they’ve got places to go and people to kill! CNN

Polio in Syria 2Thanks a lot Syria! After polio made a surprise comeback in Syria after a 14-year absence, health experts are now worried that the disease could reemerge in Europe as refugees come flooding in. Martin Eichner, a professor at the University of Tuebingen, co-authored a letter to the medial journal The Lancet, warning that the vaccine used in the U.S. and Europe offers only partial protection against infection so the disease could enter Europe via unsuspecting refugees and cause an outbreak. The polio virus, which is spread through feces, has no cure – but heightened screening of sewage systems near refugee settlements could help reduce the outbreak. Or sealing off Europe’s borders. Either one. Bloomberg

Kerry and NetanyahuJohn Kerry is taking his sweet time putting together a deal on Iran’s nuclear program. The Secretary of State arrived in Geneva on Friday to talk with Iranian representatives but stressed that no agreement has been reached on Iran’s nuke program and emphasized that the parties still have significant ground to cover. Under the current deal being floated, Iran would freeze expansion of its nuclear program in exchange for loosened economic sanctions. While the West is mulling it over, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has already made up his mind: Iran is evil! Netanyahu said he “utterly rejected” the deal with its arch nemesis Iran and if it went through, it would be a “grievous historic error.”  So to sum up, he’s not a fan. BBC News

I'm SorryPresident Obama is sorry. He’s sorry the health care website is full of glitches, he’s sorry he falsely promised Americans that they could keep their health insurance plans, and he’s sorry about the backlash he’s getting because of it. “I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation based on assurances they got from me,” he told NBC News. Well you can stuff your sorries in a sack mister because despite repeated assurances that anyone who likes their health insurance plan could keep them under Obamacare, the administration has apparently known since the summer of 2010 that this was not the case and millions of Americans could lose their insurance under the law. “Obviously we didn’t do a good enough job in terms of how we crafted the law,” Obama said in the interview Thursday. “And, you know, that’s something I regret.” No kidding. NBC News

Canada-Toronto MayorRob Ford needs a vacation and perhaps a little bit of counselling – according to his brother, Councilman Doug Ford, in what must be the understatement of the century. After admitting to smoking crack in a drunken stupor and watching a video of himself utter death threats in a drunken stupor, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is finally ready to potentially start considering the fact that he may have a bit of a drinking problem. Facing increasing pressure to resign, Ford is now considering entering rehab – and by rehab I mean a short vacation from drugs and booze. “If Rob goes away on a vacation, for a week or two weeks, Rob loses 50, 60 pounds, stays on the straight narrows, because he’s a good man … it’ll be tough to beat Rob Ford,” his brother said on Talk Radio 640. Losing 50-60lbs in a week or two without the help of crack? Good luck! The Globe and Mail

Leave a Comment

Uber Delivers Kittens for National Cat Day… And Other News

Uber Kittens

I’ll take one taxi full of kittens! The car service Uber is delivering kittens to customers in celebration of National Cat Day.

Uber teamed up with Cheezburger to allow users to order some much needed kittens snuggles. Customers who live in San Francisco, New York, or Seattle can order 15 minutes worth of kitten snuggletime for the low cost of $20! Uber Kittens 2All proceeds go towards a local animal shelter and kitten-lovers can even adopt the fluff balls upon delivery. The only problem with this GENIUS IDEA (other than I didn’t think of it first) is that users should expect a delay – especially in New York City. Due to the popularity of Uber kittens, the Big Apple is experience a major shortage of cats. Uber Blog

HangersDemand for metal coat hangers in Texas rose dramatically after the attorney general requested an emergency ruling be granted by a federal appeals court judge that would allow the state to enforce a law that could shut down a dozen abortion clinics in Texas. Governor Rick Perry signed the anti-abortion law back in July, after an successful 11-hour filibuster by Senator Wendy Davis. But on Monday, one day before the law was to take effect, a federal judge deemed key parts of the law, which requires abortion-performing doctors to have admitting privileges at a hospital within a 30-mile range of the clinics they use, unconstitutional. In response to the judge’s ruling, Perry vowed he and others will keep fighting – to the death! Hence the emergency appeal to keep the restrictions on schedule… Huffington Post

Jim WheelerThe voice of the people is all that matters – even if it means reinstating slavery! A Republican Nevada state assemblyman said he would vote to bring back slavery of that’s what his constituents wanted. “If that’s what the constituency wants that elected me, that’s what they elected me for,” Jim Wheeler said. “That’s what a republic is about.” Unless they want affordable healthcare – that’s whole other story. Raw Story

Libya TruckWhy rob a bank when you can rob a truck? It has a getaway car included! A group of 10 heavily armed men intercepted a truck in Libya, containing a money shipment from the Central Bank of Libya worth $43 million. The truck was guarded by only one security vehicle so the masked gunmen didn’t have too much trouble stealing the loot. Security forces are now searching for the culprits and cursing their cash-only society. CNN

Hostages in NigerFree at last! Four French hostages  kidnapped by al Qaeda’s north African arm three years ago in Niger have been set free. Pierre Legrand, Daniel Larribe, Thierry Dol and Marc Feret were all taken in raids targeting two French firms operating a uranium mine near Arlit, northern Niger. As for their condition, that’s yet to be determined. “We can’t say that they’re in great health but their health is fine,” said a source close President Hollande. France is denying that they paid a ransom to release the hostages. “We don’t play that game,” Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said. So al Qaeda just decided three years was enough, time to go? Al Jazeera

Leave a Comment

Rick Perry Kills Everyone’s Buzz… And Other News

Rick Perry is a Downer

Rick Perry – what a buzz kill!

After Senator Wendy Davis’s famous filibuster marathon to stop a restrictive abortion bill from passing, Texas Governor Rick Perry, aka Buzz McKillington, called for the Texas Legislature to meet in a second special session July 1 to try for a second time to pass the abortion restrictions. The Rick Perry desired restrictions include reducing the abortion deadline to 20 weeks and imposing restrictions on clinics, which would effectively close down all but 5 abortion clinics in the state of Texas.

“I am calling the Legislature back into session because too much important work remains undone for the people of Texas,” Rick Perry said in a statement. “Texans value life and want to protect women and the unborn.”

His decision to call another special session gives lawmakers 30 more days to push the bill through. Which basically means Davis’s 12-hour speech (with no bathroom breaks, food breaks, sitting breaks, going off topic breaks) may be purely symbolicNational Post

Obama Snowden ShrugSnowdon just got dissed! Speaking in Senegal, President Obama shrugged off the whole Edward Snowden situation, saying he was “not going to be scrambling jets to get a 29-year-old hacker”. Obama said these kinds of extraditions are routinely dealt with at a law-enforcement level and Snowden’s case is “not exceptional from a legal perspective.” Dismissing him as “a 29-year-old hacker,” Obama insisted he was not stressing over finding Snowden and asserted that the surveillance programs are legal and have proper oversight. But the joke’s on Obama – Snowden turned 30 last week! NBC News

MandelaNelson Mandela is doing better now but his health still managed to overshadow Obama’s Senegal trip. South African President Jacob Zuma says that Nelson Mandela’s condition has improved, but still remains critical. Obama plans to make his way to South Africa to meet with Zuma and other leaders on Friday. Unless of course Zuma bails on him to stay by Mandela’s side. BBC News

Hello KittyMuch like Toronto men (aka Bronies) are trapped in some kind of My Little Pony fetish, Singaporeans are freaking out over McDonald’s Hello Kitty toys. All over the city-state, long lines are forming outside of McDonald’s restaurants as customers push and shove for the chance to get their paws on the infamous black Hello Kitty, the last in a series of six limited-edition Hello Kitty characters dressed in different outfits from popular fairy tales. If there are two things Singaporeans are known for it’s impoliteness and the inability to form a line – so it’s no surprise that a few fights broke out along the way. Perhaps instead of selling the Hello Kitty toys, McDonald’s should hand out face masks instead – they might be a bit more effective at combating the smog that’s engulfed the country. Raw Story

Hernandez CourtThings just went from bad to worse for former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez. Not only was the football player arrested on Wednesday for the murder of Odin Lloyd and kicked off the New England Patriots, but now he’s being investigated in connection with a double homicide in Boston’s South End that happened in July 2012. Yikes – I wonder if those victims also talked to people Hernandez “didn’t like” at a nightclub.  CNN

Canada DayIt’s Canada Day Weekend!!! Time to celebrate Canada’s 146th birthday by heading north to a cottage, getting drunk by the water, and maybe lighting a sparkler or two in John A. MacDonald’s honour. Reagan (and the cats!) will be back July 2nd, hungover and ready to go!

Leave a Comment

Texas Loves the Death Penalty… And Other News

Death Penalty

Cheer up Texas – you still have the death penalty!

Even though Texas Republicans are mourning the loss of their beloved abortion bill, they still have one thing to look forward to: their 500th execution and love of the death penalty. The state is set to execute its 500th prisoner Wednesday – 52-year-old convicted murderer Kimberly McCarthy. McCarthy, who will the first woman executed since 2010, was convicted of robbing, beating, and stabbing retired professor Dorothy Booth to death in 1997. Texas is the nation’s busiest death penalty state – it’s home to about 40% of the 1,300 executions that have taken place in the United States since the death penalty got the go ahead from the courts in 1976. Fox News

French MayorWhile the Supreme Court strikes down DOMA and Prop 8, things aren’t so same-sex friendly over in France. France legalized gay marriage back in April, becoming the 14th country to do so. But not everyone was happy about it. Now a French mayor has ended up in court for refusing to wed a gay couple in southwestern France. Jean-Michel Colo, who has been the mayor of Arcangues for three decades, became the first French official to formally refuse to marry a gay couple. “I will go to the gallows” rather than back down, Colo said. He might not go to the gallows, but he could face five-year jail term and a 75,000-euro ($98,000) fine. Raw Story 

707048-laurent-blanchardSpeaking of mayors engulfed in scandals, Montreal’s city council has selected Laurent Blanchard as their interim mayor after Michael Applebaum resigned amid corruption allegations. Applebaum had replaced former mayor Gerald Tremblay who also resigned amid corruption allegations. Both deny they did anything wrong. “It’s not easy to take over the city of Montreal after what happened in the last months,” Blanchard said. “It is what has to be done and I will try to do it the best possible.” Stay tuned for Blanchard’s resignation amid corruption allegations. CBC News

Paula DeenPaula Deen’s downfall continues. Paula Deen’s PR bus made a stop at the Today Show and she spent her time on the show crying out buttery tears and begging for forgiveness. In her apology Deen denied being a racist painted herself as a victim of “very, very hurtful lies” and judgments passed by “people I have never heard of [who] are all of a sudden experts on who I am.” After allegations surfaced that Paula Deen uses the n-word, dreams of holding plantation style parties with black men dressed up in white jackets, pays her black employees with beer, and generally just behaves like a huge racist old Southern woman, the celebrity chef was dropped by the Food Network along with some other corporate partners. Washington Post

en-bronysAll of the major (and minor) news sites are covering important topics such as the Supreme Court rulings, political scandals, and international wars. And then there’s the Toronto Star… Today’s front page news: men obsessed with My Little Pony feel misunderstood. Shocker. The My Little Pony show, which is targeted towards little girls, has a growing adult male fan base that call themselves “Bronies”. In order to qualify as a Brony, you must be 18+ and “live and breathe My Little Pony”. These men aren’t perverts – they love the animation, plot, character development, and lessons on friendship that the show provides. But the Bronies are sad that the public misunderstands their love of My Little Pony. “It’d definitely be nice if people had a more open attitude toward us,” one Brony says. WTF Toronto Star. (dedicated to Bums, the ultimate Brony)

Leave a Comment

Democrats Filibustered Texas Abortion Bill to Death

Wendy Davis during her Texas Senate filibuster Abortion Bill

Texas Democrats managed to block an abortion bill that would shut most of the abortion clinics in the state all thanks to the magic of filibustering.

Democratic Senator Wendy Davis spoke for over 10 hours in attempt to delay the abortion bill that would ban the procedure after 20 weeks of pregnancy and require all abortions take place in surgical centres.

Davis was chosen to lead the filibuster because she was once a teen mom who went on to graduate from Harvard Law School. Speaking about Planned Parenthood, Senator Davis said, “I was a poor, uninsured woman, whose only care was provided through that facility. It was my medical home.”

Filibustering is not an easy task. The rules include:

  • No sitting
  • No bathroom breaks
  • No talking about anything unrelated to the bill

Decked out in pink running shoes and a supportive backbrace, Davis needed to talk for 13 hours in order to stop the bill before it could be voted on by the end of the legislative session.

“The leadership may not want to listen to Texas women, but they will have to listen to me. I intend to filibuster this bill.”

Unfortunately, just before midnight, Davis’s filibuster came to an end after Republicans accused her of violating one of the strict parliamentary rules: going off topic.

Abortion rights activists in the upstairs gallery did not like this. Fearing the abortion bill would pass before the midnight deadline, they erupted in outcry, managing to disrupt the Republican senators and further delay the vote. 

“Get them out!” Republican Senator Donna Campbell shouted to a security guard. “Time is running out!”

The Republican dominated Senate soon announced they had somehow managed to successfully pass the bill in the nick of time, but in a final twist it was later discovered that the Republicans’ final vote was taken too late to count, rendering the vote invalid.

Republicans blamed the Democratic victory on “all the ruckus and noise” and “an unruly mob using Occupy Wall Street tactics”. Republican Governor Rick Perry was especially upset – he was itching to sign the bill into law and make abortion a “thing of the past”.

Via: The New York Times

Leave a Comment

Christians Under Attack in Arkansas (less so in Texas)

Christians Under Attack -  Cheerleaders

Christians are under attack! An Arkansas school district has cancelled graduation ceremonies after some parents requested that Christian prayers not be included.

After receiving a letter from the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of an angry parent, the Riverside school district made the decision to cancel the entire graduation ceremony instead of just omitting the prayer section. The complaint led Arkansas Christians to feel that their freedom of religion is under attack.

Sixth grade parent and super Christina Kelly Adams in particular was less than impressed with the anti-Christian complaint.

“My daughter graduated last year from 6th grade and my son is graduating this year from 6th grade, and we had a pastor open our ceremony and my daughter actually closed the ceremony in prayer.”

“We just went to take a stand for God because we felt like out rights were taken away,” she added. “I realize they have rights too but you can’t take rights away from one group and give it to another.”

Instead, a group of Christian parents are looking to hold a substitute graduation at a local church, where everyone would be invited – provided they are Christians. They can’t really say no Muslims… but no Muslims…

Meanwhile, over in Texas, students are feeling slightly less persecuted after a Texas court ruled that cheerleaders are allowed to display Bible verses on banners at football games. After the Freedom From Religion Foundation brought a complaint forward in September, the cheerleaders sued the school district, arguing that their religious and free-speech rights were being violated. The judge agreed, ruling that their actions didn’t violate the Constitution. Praise Jebus!!

Students can now look forward to more biblically themed banners such as “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me,” and “But thanks be to God which gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Go team Jebus!

Via: Raw Story & NBC News

Leave a Comment