Yesterday we began our five-part series, “19-Year Old Gay Teen’s Suicide” with Part 1: “Watch The Bigots Who Pushed Him Over The Edge.” (See part three: 19-Year Old Gay Teenâ€™s Suicide: Part 3 â€“ â€œGayâ€ Same As â€œFornicator, Adulterer, Bigamist, Prostituteâ€) In it, we showed you a video of a so-called concerned citizen whom I dubbed “Mr. Slippery Slope,” who had the gall to stand in front of his town’s mayor, city council and fellow citizens to protest a proclamation to name October “Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender History Month.”
You’ll remember Mr. Slippery Slope predicted with certainty, should the proclamation be adopted, that homosexuality will be â€œinfiltratedâ€ into the schools, schools will be forced to teach about how people came out, there will be pictures of gay sex shown to children in school, â€œrecruiting children into these lifestyles will be very easy,â€ hate crimes laws will be passed to discriminate against anyone who speaks out about homophobia, the bible will be banned, the bible will be called a hate book, clergy will be put in jailâ€¦
Sadly, it is words like this, and the words you’ll hear below, that pushed nineteen-year old Zach Harrington into suicide. Yes, Zach’s parents believe their son’s death came as a result of hearing three hours of “debate” on the merits of something as innocuous as a proclamation honoring LGBT history.
The Norman, Oklahoma newspaper reports Harringtonâ€™s father, Van, while blaming the comments from the debate for his sonâ€™s suicide, doesnâ€™t hold them solely responsible. â€œVan Harrington said he feels a lack of acceptance from society and what he calls a â€œtoxic meetingâ€ last month is what finally pushed Zach over the edge.â€
I also believe we have the professional bullies to blame for this ignorance, ignorance that caused this young manâ€™s death, and that caused the death of ten other teens in September alone.
Today, watch this Norman citizen say, “The love that dare not speak its name has become the love that never shuts up.” He then compares a proclamation for “Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender History Month” to a proclamation for “wife-swapping.” Classy. “In conclusion,” he says, “If you choose to vote this down, no one will be physically harmed.” Think again.
Our thoughts are with the families of all teens who succumbed to suicide after enduring anti-gay hate. It is my hope that all the people who had a hand in spreading that hate, homophobia, and ignorance, turn their lives around and embrace people’s differences as much as their similarities.
I invite anyone from Norman to contact me to share their thoughts on the proclamation, and on the life and death of Zach Harrington.
(See the next installment: 19-Year Old Gay Teenâ€™s Suicide: Part 3 â€“ â€œGayâ€ Same As â€œFornicator, Adulterer, Bigamist, Prostituteâ€)
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White House Adds 20 Percent Increase to ‘Best Case’ Projection of Coronavirus Deaths
The White House is moving the goal posts once again. Instead of taking drastic action, like asking every state’s governor to mandate a quarantine to reduce the spread of coronavirus, it is quietly upping its projected death toll, just one day after stunning Americans with a six-digit death rate.
On Sunday President Donald Trump told Americans he thinks if 100,000 Americans die from coronavirus he will have done “a very good job.”
On Monday Dr. Deborah Birx announced the White House is projecting 100,000 to 200,000 deaths.
Tuesday evening, the number increased 20 percent.
It’s now telling Americans that it is expecting up to 240,000 coronavirus deaths – as the best case scenario.
Dr Birx showing model for potential number of dead in US. With “no intervention,” the model shows 1.5 to 2 million deaths. “With intervention” shows 100,000-240,000 deaths. Still very sobering.
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) March 31, 2020
Trump spent a good portion of Tuesday’s coronavirus press briefing claiming that “a lot of people” wanted him to do nothing and just “ride it out.” He noted that deaths then would be 1.5 million to 2.2 million. He used those numbers to pat himself on the back, saying again that by comparison 100,000 to 240,000 “is a very low number.”
It is not. It is directly attributable to the President’s refusal to take seriously the coronavirus pandemic from the start, to Trump’s refusal to provide enough tests, and to Trump’s refusal to provide enough medical equipment and supplies.
After ignoring experts and refusing to take necessary action for two months, the White House is laying the foundation for a future claim that 100,000-240,000 American deaths is a win.
That’s 2-4 times the number of Americans killed in the Vietnam War over the course of a decade.
— Leah McElrath 🏳️🌈 (@leahmcelrath) March 31, 2020
White House Official Admits Trump Has Politicized Coronavirus Response – Favoring Red States to Grab Electoral College Votes: Report
“The president knows Florida is so important for his reelection”
President Donald Trump has politicized the federal government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, from how it allocates medical equipment and supplies like PPE, to how it responds to requests from red state governors versus blue state governors – and a White House official is freely admitting it.
The Trump administration is sending red states like Florida – which has helped elect with the winner of every presidential race consistently since 1996 – all the coronavirus personal protective gear (PPE) that it has requested, while blue states which he has no chance of winning – like New York – are getting a fraction of their requests filled.
Trump is strongly supporting Florida’s new Republican governor, Ron DeSantis (photo, with Trump), who refused to close his beaches during spring break. That move alone allowed college students to potentially carry the coronavirus back to their friends, families, and dorm mates throughout the nation, fueling the pandemic.
“Officials in Florida have pointed to the close relationship between DeSantis and Trump as a helpful tool in shaping federal policy,” The Washington Post reports. “The two speak almost daily. Trump has formed an especially close relationship with DeSantis, a former congressman whose pugilistic defenses of the president helped him secure a race-changing endorsement in his 2018 bid for governor. Trump will probably need the 29 electoral votes of his adopted homestead to win reelection.”
The Post suggests it was DeSantis’ complaints that fueled Trump’s threat this past weekend to quarantine the tri-state area..
I am giving consideration to a QUARANTINE of developing “hot spots”, New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. A decision will be made, one way or another, shortly.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 28, 2020
“During a phone call on Saturday, DeSantis complained about people with the coronavirus traveling from New York to Florida. Minutes later, Trump publicly said he was considering a quarantine for New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. He ultimately decided against it.”
It’s not just policy that Trump is helping DeSantis with.
“One White House official said Trump is attuned to the electoral importance of Florida in November, giving added weight to the arguments DeSantis has made to the administration that his state’s economy should reopen as soon as possible.”
“The president knows Florida is so important for his reelection so when DeSantis says that, it means a lot,” said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to be frank. “He pays close attention to what Florida wants.”
“Three days after requesting 430,000 surgical masks, 180,000 N95 respirators and other equipment on March 11, Florida received all of the items,” The Post continues. “The state received an additional shipment less than two weeks later. As of late last week, it was awaiting a third shipment.”
Trump’s Schedule is Empty Because He’s Spending His Days Chatting With Titans of Industry, World Leaders, and Celebrities
President Donald Trump isn’t jetting off aboard Air Force One every few days to preside over MAGA and KAG campaign rallies anymore, now that his pandemic is keeping much of the nation – including the president – at home. World leaders have stopped calling – at least in person – so his televised Oval Office diatribes have come to an end, at least temporarily.
Trump’s calendar has been looking pretty empty these days (not a dramatic change from pre-pandemic days.)
Here’s Trump’s public schedule for tomorrow. (Public schedules don’t include all of a president’s activities.) pic.twitter.com/dst1Nybqbg
— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) March 31, 2020
NCRM scoured Trump’s published schedule.
He hasn’t held an actual campaign rally since March 6.
He hasn’t held a fundraiser since March 8.
He received (or at least had scheduled) just seven “daily” intelligence briefings in March – up from just three in February.
Trump has met with supply chain distributors, nurses, tourism industry executives, bankers, and pharmaceutical executives.
And daily he’s held his nationally televised coronavirus task force press briefings, which are little more than toned-down campaign rallies during which Trump freely spreads lies and misinformation, and which the news networks all-too-often air live, unmoderated, and un-fact checked.
According to my The Washington Post, however, Trump has been filling his days, with phone calls. To celebrities and sports figures, along with business and world leaders. Just how much of that is aiding the war effort against the coronavirus is anyone’s guess.
“The 73-year-old, who famously loves to kibitz on the phone, is known for reaching out to cable news hosts, rich friends and assorted associates at all hours to shoot the breeze,” The Post reports. “Cooped up in the White House for weeks now, except for a brief trip to Virginia on Saturday, Trump appears to be working the phones even harder than usual. Corporate executives, governors, celebrities and foreign leaders looking to get something from the U.S. government seem especially eager to secure a telephonic audience with the president.”
Just how much help Trump is giving the national fight against that “invisible enemy” – the coronavirus – which he says has made him a “wartime president,” is another story.
Trump talked with famous chef Wolfgang Puck, promising him the would have the IRS will restore the tax deductibility of meals and entertainment for corporations.
“I’ve directed my staff to use any and all authority available to give restaurants, bars, clubs incentives to stay open,” Trump said.
He’s talked with Apple CEO Tim Cook. Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun, New York Yankees baseball star Alex Rodriguez, NFL star Tom Brady, and “friends in New York who have been stricken by the coronavirus.”
Of course, Trump has called in to Fox News host Sean Hannity’s show, and Fox News’ “Fox & Friends” morning show as well.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, Russian President Vladimir Putin, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, and China’s President Xi Jinping also made Trump’s call sheet. Russia and China reportedly are sending the U.S. supplies to help fight COVID-19, although exactly what remains unknown. Trump infamously sent China 17.8 tons of medical supplies, including PPE, in February – after being warned there would be a tremendous shortage.
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