Ohio State Senate Passes Restrictive Abortion Bill

From the article:

The Ohio state Senate passed a bill that would prohibit abortions on fetuses with a “detectable heartbeat,” which can be detected as early as six weeks into pregnancy. There are no rape or incest exceptions.

Source: Ohio State Senate Passes Restrictive Abortion Bill

I just don’t even with this. 6 weeks?! Fuck them.

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Federal Court Rules That Ohio Can Defund Planned Parenthood

From the article:

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today that Ohio can defund Planned Parenthood because the organization provides abortions, according to Politico. The ruling overturned a previous decision that had said the state needed to continue providing $1.5 million to clinics.

Source: Federal Court Rules That Ohio Can Defund Planned Parenthood

4 our of the eleven judges that ruled on this case were appointed by Trump.

A transitional home forced out a lesbian couple, citing their Catholic funding / LGBTQ Nation

From the article:

Melanie Dingess and Leslie Conners were living at the The Gardens apartment complex in Newark, Ohio, a facility for people working toward independently living, like the homeless and people with severe mental health problems. The Gardens is managed by St. Vincent de Paul Housing Facilities.

The women were forced to leave after management allegedly said they did not want gay couples living together in the facility.

Source: A transitional home forced out a lesbian couple, citing their Catholic funding / LGBTQ Nation

A worker, Donna Gibson, discussed openly that her boss was demanding she ask everyone if they were gay, married, and/or sexually active, and to dump them if they were.

The Gardens has previously had complaints against barring unwed couples from entering.

They have had their United Way funding rejected. I audit federal grant funding for similar funding, and that can get that revoked, but I don’t know if they receive federal grants.

This is rank discrimination against LGBTQ people.

How the Rich Really Play, “Who Wants To Be An Ivy Leaguer?” — ProPublica

From the article:

A ProPublica editor who investigated how the rich buy their children’s way into elite colleges reflects on the latest scandal—and remembers when affluent readers mistook his expose for a “how-to” guide.

Source: How the Rich Really Play, “Who Wants To Be An Ivy Leaguer?” — ProPublica

Last week my feeds blew up with this. I was letting is simmer, but to give you an idea:

I remember when I first heard of that rich folks can get into college as a “legacy admission.” I was playing in a Call of Cthulhu table top game, and one of the players wanted to play a debutante that was in college as a legacy admission. I had never heard of this, nor had anyone else. We had to stop and look it up.

It turns out, if you are rich enough, and have familial relationship to alumni, the college can just let you in. This is not something that happens in other countries. This is something that happens in elite universities in the US.

These students have a substantially lower GPS and SAT scores, but they get in anyways. According to the linked wiki, being a legacy ups your chances to get into an elite college by 19.7%. This is from a 2005 study.

I was completely fucking outraged then, because I had been under the illusion that the US educational system was a meritocracy. That is was the one place where your hard work could pay off, and you could get ahead. As it turns out, that’s not really true. Here’s a great article about that illusion: Higher Education and the Illusion of Meritocracy

Our educational system is anything but a meritocracy based on your intelligence and educational progress and hard work. The only thing this scandal has brought to light, is that these rich and/or famous folks skipped the legacy system and all the other pay for play legal options with college admissions, and went to blatant outright cheating in a pay for play kind of deal.

I agree with the Meritocracy article that there is an every day admissions process that literally cuts out those students from poor and middle class backgrounds in favor of higher income students? Even without this giant cheating scandal, this is happening in our colleges every day.

From the article: 

In short, the real corruption of elite-college admissions is more mundane than this scandal suggests, though far more deleterious to America’s meritocratic ideals. To view this scandal as the problem is to unintentionally reinforce the actual problem: In a truly meritocratic society, higher education should correct inequity; instead, elite higher education exacerbates inequity.

The irony is that this scandal can look like an argument for restoring a meritocratic system that wealthy people are trying to subvert through extreme measures. That’s simply not the case. As Doron Taussig, an assistant professor of journalism at Ursinus College who is working on a book about perceptions of meritocracy, told me: “Flaws in meritocracy are defined as problems because they are violations of meritocracy,” but rarely are they taken as evidence that meritocracy is a bad or incoherent idea.

In other words, this isn’t a system wealthy people have to subvert; it’s a system set up for them to participate in without guile or palm-greasing. If falsified ACT scores and Photoshopped water-polo pictures were what corruption looked like, we could solve it. But the problem isn’t the criminal subversion of meritocracy, it’s the mundane ways in which the illusion of meritocracy perpetuates itself and gets us to buy in.

This doesn’t even cover the other college issues. Cheating is a common thing. When I got my accounting degree I was astounded by the number of business/accounting majors that just outright cheated. They bought prefab tests online with the answers, used electronic translators to look up answers on google, or just read the damn book on them, or just literally asked.

I had a guy in my class look over at my carefully written notes, and literally ask me in the middle of a test if he could borrow them, reach over and take them, and then use them to get an A whereas he had gotten a D last test. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE FUCKING TEST. I just turned my stuff in, and packed up, but damn.

When I went to school for nursing, this would have been unheard of, and grounds for expulsion. Yet, when I went to a business college, literally half the students were engaging on some form of cheating. I was offered tests online. I saw tests that students had bought being brought into testing so they could match up answers. (The gal that did this still got a C, I mean how?!)

Cheating in college is a lot bigger than the latest admissions scandal

If we want our institutions of learning to have meaning, all this has to change.

The Minecraft creator went on a transphobic rant & Twitter wasn’t having it / LGBTQ Nation

From the article:

Markus Alexej Persson, who goes by Notch, created Minecraft. The game, released in 2011, is the second-best selling video game of all time. It was acquired by Microsoft in 2014 for $2.5 billion.

Replying to a “My Little Pony” meme stating that trans women are women, Persson stated that transgender people only “feel that they are” before comparing transgender people to his sister, whom he claims had an eating disorder.

Source: The Minecraft creator went on a transphobic rant & Twitter wasn’t having it / LGBTQ Nation

I have to note my biases as I write this. I am a long time Minecraft fan. Markus Persson has been a complete jackass for a long time. The fact that his a transphobic jackass is not shocking because his uneducated bullshit views have always been an issue. So fuck Notch.

Extremists Understand What Tech Platforms Have Built – The Atlantic

From the article:

White supremacists exploit the weaknesses in the social-media ecosystem as Facebook and Google struggle to keep up.

Source: Extremists Understand What Tech Platforms Have Built – The Atlantic

This article discusses why phrases like “Subscribe to PewDiePie” is a trolling racist dog whistle. How covering white supremacist movements requires a different kind of coverage these days from journalists because the tactics have changed.

I agree wholeheartedly that these racist people are now using innocent phrases to signal to others of their ilk. We can either ignore their smug in jokes, or call it out for what it is.

Ex-Cop Allegedly Arrested Women and Forced Them to Have Sex In Exchange for Freedom

From the article:

In a case that bears some resemblance to that of ex-cop Daniel Holtzclaw, who in 2016 was found guilty of assaulting black women while on duty and threatening them into silence, 30-year Columbus Police Department veteran Andrew Mitchell has been arrested for allegedly kidnapping women “under the guise of making an arrest” and forcing them to engage in sexual acts in exchange for their freedom, according to the Department of Justice.

After a grand jury indictment on March 7, federal agents have charged Mitchell on seven counts—three regarding alleged incidences of forcing women into sexual acts, and four regarding witness tampering, obstruction of justice, and giving a false statement to authorities regarding the his alleged misconduct. If convicted, Mitchell faces up to life in prison.

Source: Ex-Cop Allegedly Arrested Women and Forced Them to Have Sex In Exchange for Freedom

This is the second cop to engage in this behavior. How many more are there? He’s pleading not guilty. He also shot a sex worker in the back of his squad car.