Doug Berger, co-chair Secular Coalition for Ohio, and Monette Richards, President of CFI NE
Ohio and Legislative chair for the Secular Coalition for Ohio at the Secular Summit 2.0
On January 28th I joined 20 other secular people at the Secular Summit 2.0 held in the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus. The lobby day event was sponsored by the Center for Inquiry Northeast Ohio and included people from several Ohio secular groups. We had several speakers, a little training in lobbying, and prearranged visits with our elected state representatives and senators.
I wrote a detailed account of the day over at my Secular Left blog. It also includes some pictures I took.
On January 28th, a bitterly cold Tuesday morning, approximately 20 people gathered for the second annual Secular Summit in the Museum Gallery in the Ohio Statehouse in downtown Columbus. The summit was organized and hosted by the Center for Inquiry Northeast Ohio (CFI NE Ohio) but included people from the various secular groups in Ohio. In the morning we had several speakers, some training in lobbying, and then the afternoon was when participants visited their Representatives and Senators to introduce themselves and the issues of importance to seculars in the state. The extreme cold couldn’t keep us from talking to the legislature, most of whom have completely opposite views.
Great Time At The Ohio Secular Summit
The problems with the national Healthcare.gov website have been reported quite a bit by a national media that loves to parrot Republican talking points. I really hoped that the bias in the reporting would stay with the national media and my local media would do a better job. I was wrong. The one station I watch most often, WBNS 10TV, in Columbus, breathlessly reported the problems signing up for the insurance exchange but has failed to offer any context or any success stories.
Continue reading “Bad Journalism About The Affordable Care Act Trickling Down To My Local Station”
Ever since the insurance exchange opened at the beginning of October, WBNS 10TV has been doing stories like the following:
I came a across a report that the Ohio State University Police has acquired a Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected (MRAP) vehicle for their fleet. Why is the Department of Defense selling a heavy duty military vehicle like the MRAP to a college police department? I know cops like new toys but is the MRAP really needed on a college campus? The reasons OSU give just don’t hold up to examination.
Continue reading “Why Does Ohio State University Need A Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected Vehicle?”
MRAPs are armored personnel carriers used in hostile environments like Iraq and Afghanistan where they are needed to reduce causalities due to mines and ambushes. This is frankly overkill for any police department to have and continues the troubling militarism of the police.
Here in Columbus, there is a major push to pass a new school levy. That isn’t unusual especially in Ohio where the Republicans have taken million of dollars away from education, over the past few years, in order to give tax breaks to their rich friends. What is different this time is the effort is really to privatize the Columbus School District so the corporate interests can get millions of dollars the schools still get. Privatizing public schools doesn’t make it better. Instead we give up control and our tax dollars for the equivalent of a WalMart for education.
Continue reading “Privatizing Public Schools Isn’t How To Solve Education Problem”
There is a TV ad running with Columbus Mayor Coleman touting the levy. Here are the bullet points given in the ad:
The artist as a young man (circa 1973)
This month is the anniversary of my birth. Part of our life cycle. Birth, living, then death. All simple, neat and tidy. Millions have done it before me and millions more will come after me. Why am I so special? What is my purpose? It may surprise you to know, I know the answer to those questions and I’m both thrilled and scared about it at the same time. Whenever my birthday comes around, I get this sick feeling of dread that I try to hide from my friends and family. (Oops! LOL) But I don’t want to ignore the date. We can celebrate growing old.
Continue reading “Time Passes – Leave A Positive Legacy”
Someone, I can’t remember who, described life as a roller coaster. From birth to a certain point in life, we’re moving up and up like going up the big hill of a roller coaster. After that certain point it’s all down hill. I do feel like I have started that down hill trip. Or I’ve flipped over the hour glass and the grains of time are slipping slowly to the other side. Whichever sad depressing metaphor works for you.