How much has changed 2: Mildred Loving

American citizen Mildred Loving has died. When she was a young woman, marriages between people of different races were illegal in the U.S. and South Africa. All the arguments that are used now against gay marriage were used against interracial marriage. It was unnatural. It would cause the breakdown of society. She broke the law in her state by marrying Richard Loving, who was officially “white” while she was officially “black.” Never mind that there’s no unique gene in either race. She and her husband were arrested and convicted. They appealed all the way to the Supreme Court and the laws were struck down as unconstitutional. She broke those laws to pieces!

Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving

Read the story at Pharygula: Mildred Loving has died.

Mildred Loving, a black woman whose challenge to Virginia’s ban on interracial marriage led to a landmark Supreme Court ruling striking down such laws nationwide, has died, her daughter said Monday.

Peggy Fortune said Loving, 68, died Friday at her home in rural Milford. She did not disclose the cause of death.

I want (people) to remember her as being strong and brave yet humble — and believed in love,” Fortune told The Associated Press.

Loving and her white husband, Richard, changed history in 1967 when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld their right to marry. The ruling struck down laws banning racially mixed marriages in at least 17 states.

Useful gadgets: computer lapdesk

portable lap desk for laptop computers

This is a lap desk for laptop computers, but it’s good for a keyboard, too. The concept is simple. Many people work with a computer balanced in their laps. This gives them a firm surface on top and a soft surface on the bottom. It’s more comfortable and the computer (or keyboard) is more secure. It’s not a writing desk—there’s a slight recess in the centre for air circulation under the computer. It should be especially good for travelling. I picked mine up in an office supply store. The Web site, LapDesk Originals, lists retailers.

A Christian persecuted

Blog Stray Dog Café has the story of a Christian who was really persecuted in Ontario—by a Christian organization.

Several deep threads of irony lace the recent decision of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal against Christian Horizons, a provider of services to people with developmental disorders.  The case involved a Christian lesbian named Connie Heintz, who left her job with this agency, and indeed was harassed out of it. Heintz found herself unable to comply with the agency’s employment contract — containing an explicitly evangelical Christian moral and religious agreement —  which essentially forbade her from engaging in homosexual activity.  Christian Horizons, which views itself as deeply evangelical Christian agency, and its work as an extension of Christian values, attempted to argue that as a religious organization it is exempt from the provisions of the Ontario Human Rights Code….

Dalton McGuinty strikes down exclusive prayer

Dalton McGuinty, premier of Ontario 2008

Dalton McGuinty, the premier of Canada’s most populous province, has decided that the daily sessions of the Ontario Legislature will no longer open with the saying of the Lord’s Prayer. It’s just not inclusive enough:

Neither the wrath of his Roman Catholic mother nor the thousands of e-mails and petitions from the public prove Ontario should cling to the tradition of opening the daily proceedings of the legislature with the Lord’s Prayer, Premier Dalton McGuinty said today.

Although at least one Jewish Conservative says the Liberals should listen to the 5,700 people who have written to the province so far about the proposal to replace the Lord’s Prayer, McGuinty said it’s the government’s job to lead and ensure the daily reading at the legislature reflects the diversity of Ontario.

McGuinty laughed today when asked whether the public outcry had made him think twice about floating the idea of scrapping the Lord’s Prayer.

“You’re supposed to lead – that’s the job,” said McGuinty

The volume of comments on this decision has crashed the government’s Web site.

Stock photo of the day: Eurasian griffon vulture

I just stumbled upon this lovely image: Eurasian griffon vulture by Linda Wright.

Eurasian Griffon Vulture

The God game: heads he wins, tails you lose

By the Book comics

See By the Book.

Expelled in French!

Expelled exposedRécemment, PZ Myers, un critique du créationisme, fut expulsé du visionnement d’Expelled (!), un film cro-écrit par Ben Stein et qui défend le design intelligent:

Ils m’ont écarté et m’ont évicté, mais ils n’ont pas remarqué mon invité. Ils l’ont laissé entrer, escorté par ma femme et ma fille. J’imagine qu’ils ne l’ont pas reconnu, c’était…

Richard Dawkins.

See Expelled movie reviews.

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