This past week I found myself at the headquarters of Fox News in midtown Manhattan. I wasn’t there as part of some post-Occupy Wall Street protest; I’d actually been invited to the studio to be a guest on Fox radio. This wasn’t one of those talking-head screaming matches where Sean Hannity or Bill O’Reilly try to rip the “crazy” liberal guest a new one. Instead, I was invited onto the Fox liberal oasis, the Alan Colmes Show. If you’re not familiar with Colmes, he was the non-Hannity portion of the long-running Fox show Hannity & Colmes. In a brilliant piece of “fair and balanced” casting, the skinny, nerdy-looking Colmes was pitted against squared-jaw Sean Hannity, both to act as his punching bag and to give the liberal perspective on news stories. Because he survived, I guess, they gave him his own radio show.
The HBO documentary Going Clear, an investigation inside the Church of Scientology, premieres on March 29. Unsurprisingly, the organization refused to cooperate with the film’s directors. Sheila Nevins, president of HBO Documentary Films told the Hollywood Reporter that the network had 160 lawyers look at the film due to fears of backlash from the church (which some consider a cult). Her concern is well-founded given that Scientology has always used fear tactics to quash critics.
As long as the extreme Christian right exists, there are going to be closed-minded, Bible-thumping homophobes who trumpet scriptural passages "proving" that gays are going to spend eternity in hell. Need we remind these religious zealots that it’s the year 2015?
Every politician is bound to get heckled while delivering a speech at some point during their term—it’s the nature of the First Amendment. Some politicians, like President Obama, are great at heckler comebacks. Others, like John McCain, are just plain horrible at handling unscripted outbursts.
My official Oath Keepers membership card is in my outstretched hand. With great power comes great responsibility: my duty is to uphold the Constitution of the United States of America. No compromise. I’m now a member of a controversial conservative group whose members make Ted Nugent look like a bleeding-heart Rachel Maddow. Our mission is to keep the government accountable. Just remember: Not on my watch.
Pro-Pope fever has swept the imagination of those who love both Christian principles and progressive thinking. The approval rating is soaring sky-high for the man in the funny hat. Francis has graced the covers of The Advocate and Rolling Stone and was voted Time’s Man of the Year. Obama even gave PF a shout out in his State of the Union address this week: “As His Holiness, Pope Francis, has said, diplomacy is the work of ‘small steps.’ These small steps have added up to new hope for the future in Cuba.” Pope Francis has his own fanzine and smartphone app. The man even tweets!
Last year, Colorado launched the $2 million Don’t Be a Lab Rat campaign. Backed by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, this anti-pot campaign was a modern-day Reefer Madness, with human-sized rat cages set up in public places to show the horrors of smoking marijuana. The idea was to relay to teenagers that Colorado was becoming a testing ground for the consequences of marijuana legalization and that they would be the test subjects if they smoked pot.
When a white guy is seen wandering around in public waving a gun, the police usually try to talk him down; he’s probably just having a bad day. Even if the white guy happens to be pointing his gun directly at an officer, his interaction with the police is unlikely to end in the exchange of gunfire. This is called white privilege.
Guns don’t kill people; dogs with guns kill people—or so it would seem from the recent rash of gun owners who have been accidentally shot by their dogs.
We all know Scientology is a cult. But Facebook, everyone’s favorite social network, has plenty of cultish qualities too. After all, the amount of control and personal information we relinquish to Facebook goes way beyond any confidential tidbits John Travolta reveals during the church’s regular “auditing” interviews.