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‘That’s Just Not Right’: Tim Kaine Blasts Mike Pence’s Anti-LGBT Record, Links Him to HB2 at NC Rally

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Democratic Veep Hopeful Notes Gov. Pence Once Said Same-Sex Marriage Would Lead to ‘Societal Collapse’

Saying the country needs to go “forward, not back” on LGBT rights to achieve “a more perfect union,” Democratic vice presidential nominee and Virginia U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine slammed GOP adversary Mike Pence on Wednesday for signing legislation similar to North Carolina’s House Bill 2 as governor of Indiana. 

Speaking at a rally in Greensboro, Kaine also noted that as a congressman in 2006, during a speech in support of a proposed federal constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, Pence said “the deterioration of marriage and family” would lead to “societal collapse.” 

“That’s just not right, folks, just not right,” Kaine said. 

HB2, which prohibits cities like Greensboro from protecting LGBT people against discrimination and restricts restroom access for transgender people, has cost North Carolina hundreds of millions of dollars, including the loss of a major PayPal expansion, as well as the cancellation of several marquee events including the 2017 NBA All-Star Game. 

Indiana experienced similar backlash in the wake of Pence’s decision to sign the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 2015, prompting the Legislature to pass an emergency fix saying the law could not be used to discriminate against LGBT people. 

“Now, I know in North Carolina, there’s been some pain over this issue,” Kaine said. “They snuck through in the legislature this HB2, and they tried to introduce it kind of in the dead of night. ‘Can we do an end run and make it happen really fast, and maybe people won’t notice and maybe people won’t complain?’ You all have stood up in a major way and you’ve said this is not who we are. This is not who North Carolina is. These are not our values. And that’s one of the reasons why North Carolina is so intensely focused on this race.”

“The vice presidential nominee on the Republican side, Mike Pence, did something like the North Carolina bill,” Kaine added. “Found that immediately, discriminating against LGBT people immediately companies started to pull out. You’re seeing those announcements in North Carolina too, whether it’s the All-Star game or PayPal. Same thing happened in Indiana and he had to kind of do a U-turn.” 

As governor of Virginia, Kaine signed an executive order protecting LGBT state employees against discrimination. He’s also an original sponsor of the Equality Act, the federal law that would add LGBT people to the Civil Rights Act, and he received a score of 90 out of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign’s most recent Congressional Scorecard. 

“We’ve just been making progress and overcoming our imperfections and becoming that more perfect union, and one of the most recent battles that’s been really powerful is the battle for LGBT equality,” Kaine told the crowd in Greensboro. “It’s just been one more wall that we had to knock down to be all we can be.”

Also speaking at the rally was North Carolina Attorney General and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Roy Cooper, who pledged to repeal HB2. Republican incumbent Gov. Pat McCrory, who’s running against Cooper for re-election and has been an ardent defender of HB2, responded to Kaine and Cooper by hypocritically accusing them of using trans restroom access as a political wedge. 

“It’s amazing that all Roy Cooper and Tim Kaine want to talk about is bathrooms,” McCrory spokesman Ricky Diaz said in a statement. “They continue to spew the same false, negative talking points because they want North Carolina to fail to boost their election prospects.”

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Image by Hillary for America via Flickr and a CC license 

 

 

 

 

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

Marjorie Taylor Greene Suggests July 4 Mass Shooting Was a False Flag ‘Designed to Persuade’ GOP to Support Gun Control

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U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene has promoted several very different responses over the past few hours to the July 4 mass shooting that left seven people dead, scores injured, and a two-year-old boy orphaned.

The Republican from Georgia went from promoting the right wing’s latest talking points, that antidepressants are to blame for the massacre, and demanding to see the alleged shooter’s medical records, to claiming it “sounds like” a false flag operation, “designed to persuade Republicans to go along with” gun control.

“Now, here’s what I have to say,” Greene declared on her podcast. “I mean, two shootings on July 4, one in a rich white neighborhood and the other at a fireworks display.”

(There were 218 shootings on July 4, according to information from the Gun Violence Archive.)

“Almost sounds like it’s designed to persuade Republicans to go along with more gun control,” she announced, strongly suggesting false flag operations. Police have offered no indication anyone except the alleged shooter planned the Independence Day massacre, and have said he spent weeks doing so.

“I mean, after all, remember we didn’t see that happen at all the Pride parades in the month of June,” she lamented angrily, ignoring all the right-wing violence at Pride celebrations this year.

“But as soon as we hit MAGA month, as soon as we hit the month that we’re all celebrating – loving our country,” she said, implying Democrats don’t love America and don’t celebrate Independence Day, “we have shootings on July 4. I mean, that’s a, you know, that would sound like a conspiracy theory, right? Of course. But what’s the definition of a right-wing conspiracy theory? Well, by the way, it’s the news that’s just six-months early.”

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COMMENTARY

Antidepressants, Pot, and Women to Blame for Horrific July 4 Mass Shooting According to Tucker Carlson

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Barely hours after authorities announced charges against the 21-year-old police believe shot and killed seven people and wounded scores of others at a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park, Illinois, Tucker Carlson explained to his Fox News audience why Robert Crimo allegedly committed mass murder: women, marijuana, and antidepressants, along with a life filled with pornography, video games, and social media.

Experts disagree.

Carlson said Crimo seems “like a nutcase,” but he “he didn’t stand out, maybe because there’s a lot of young men in America who suddenly look and act a lot like this guy.”

“That’s not an attack, it’s just true,” Carlson insisted, as Media Matters reports. “Like Crimo, they inhabit a solitary fantasy world of social media, porn, and video games. They are high on government-endorsed weed. ‘Smoke some more! It’s good for you,'” he mocked.

“They’re numbed by the endless psychotropic drugs that are handed out at every school in the country by crackpots posing as counselors,'” Carlson claimed, apparently referring to antidepressants, also known as SSRIs. School counselors, unless they are also MDs, cannot prescribe SSRIs.

(SSRIs are prescribed for “depression, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), premenstrual dysphoric disorder, migraine (prophylaxis), and other conditions.”)

RELATED: Highland Park Shooting Deaths Include Both Parents of Two Year Old Found at Scene of July 4th Massacre

Then Carlson arrived at the root of what he determined drives these young men, presumably these young men who kill.

Carlson, who has been labeled a “white nationalist,” and a “white supremacist,” neglected to mention the young men who are pulling the trigger at mass shootings are almost always white.

Instead, he says, “they are angry.”

Why?

Because, Carlson declares, “the authorities in their lives — mostly women — never stop lecturing them about their so-called privilege. ‘You’re male! You’re privileged.’ Imagine that. Try to imagine an unhealthier, unhappier life than that. So, a lot of young men in America are going nuts. Are you surprised?”

Meanwhile, very little is known about the shooter. It is not known if he’s taking antidepressants, using pot, has a mother who attacks him for his privilege, or uses porn. But Carlson and others at Fox News are suggesting to viewers they know why he flooded more than 70 rounds into an Independence Day parade.

There have been 320 mass shootings in America this year – and we’re only on day 187.

The nation has suffered 22,583 deaths from guns just this year alone. That’s 120 deaths on average every day.

Despite those numbers, the vast, vast majority of people taking antidepressants, or using pot or porn, are not pulling the trigger in a mass shooting.

Carlson points to no statistics to show women “never stop lecturing them about their so-called privilege.”

In fact, he offers up no statistics, no proof at all of any of his claims.

Same with Fox News’ Laura Ingraham, who blames the mass shooting on pot.

U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene quickly dredged up the “psychiatric drugs” allegation less than 24 hours after the shooting started.

“What drugs and/or psychiatric drugs was he on for his mind to be ruined in alternate reality games that caused him to commit a mass shooting? His parents know. The police know. School, arrest, hospital records? The public DESERVES to know.,” she tweeted.

Dr. Sherry Pagoto is a licensed clinical psychologist, social media researcher, professor at the University of Connecticut, and Director of the UConn Center for mHealth and Social Media. She’s also the former president of the Society of Behavioral Medicine.

And she’s pushing back against the SSRI blame game.

“Psychologist here,” writes Dr. Pagoto. “Yep. And far more women take SSRIs than men and yet women never commit mass shootings. The SSRI hypothesis has absolutely no scientific support. Quite the contrary, SSRIs save lives.”

In 2019 Politifact looked at the “dubious claim that psychiatric drugs fuel mass shootings?” The fact-checking group talked with six medical experts, with one explaining “that in her view there is no evidence that psychiatric medicine is linked to mass shootings.”

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RELIGIOUS EXTREMISM

Christian Right Facing ‘Credibility’ Issues — Just as They Try to Force Their Will on Everyone Else: Analyst

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On Tuesday, writing for MSNBC’s ReidOutBlog, Ja’han Jones outlined how the Christian Right is facing renewed moral scrutiny and a crisis of “credibility” — at exactly the moment they have captured the Supreme Court and have begun striking down rights and protections they have long declared to be counter to moral society.

Specifically, he argued, the latest rash of sex abuse allegations against conservative Christian institutions puts their moral authority on the line.

The Catholic Church has long faced criticism for overlooking and shielding priests accused of molesting children — but now, noted Jones, other denominations are coming under scrutiny for similar alleged misconduct.

“First, there’s the scandal still unfolding at Agapè Boarding School, a Christian facility for young men in Missouri that’s facing a slew of child abuse allegations. Agapè pitches guardians on its ability to ‘biblically teach your child the importance of submission to authority and the joys of being an obedient law-abiding citizen,'” wrote Jones. “The Missouri State Highway Patrol has been investigating Agapè for systemic child abuse for more than a year now. On Monday, The Daily Beast reported new details about several students who have filed lawsuits alleging they were sexually abused and beaten by workers at the school.”

IN OTHER NEWS: ‘Striking’ how close Georgia election investigation is getting to Trump: legal expert

“That alleged culture of abuse sounds similar to the one victims say was fostered by the Southern Baptist Convention, an ultraconservative denomination of Christian nationalists,” wrote Jones. “In May, church leaders released a report showing hundreds of pastors and church workers have been accused of sexual abuse. The SBC, which is in ideological lockstep with the conservative movement, has since released the names of pastors it says were accused between 2000 and 2019. When the news dropped, SBC President Ed Litton said in a statement there ‘are not adequate words to express my sorrow at the things revealed in this report,’ and that Southern Baptists ‘must resolve to change our culture and implement desperately needed reforms.'”

All of this, he noted, comes as many right-wing Christian organizations are claiming that their hate speech and discrimination against LGBTQ people is in the name of “defending children.” And this is “an impossible sell when the worlds they operate appear even more broken than the one they want to ‘fix.'”

You can read more here.

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