Showing posts from August, 2014

Five Judges Have Stopped All Further Progress on Gay Civil Rights Legislation

 [The three women on the Court dissented] In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby , decided by the United States Supreme Court a few months ago, the Court’s five conservative—and Republican—justices (over the vigorous dissent of the four liberals) decided that a corporation like Hobby Lobby (the stock of which is owned by a very religious family) is protected by the First Amendment’s freedom of religion clause and thus could use religious beliefs to object to funding family-planning coverage for its employees.   Corporations are now “people” too and religious corporations can go to church just like other U.S. citizens! This was a natural enough extension of the Court’s infamous decision in Citizens United v. FEC (2010), which declared that corporations were “persons,” thus entitling them to the full protection of the U.S. Constitution (with freedom of speech permitting them to spend as much money as they like: influencing elections, flooding us with billions of dollars to promote campaign

A Robin Williams Story: The 1983 Bardathon

  David Ogden Stiers in M*A*S*H When I was living in San Francisco in 1983 the College of Marin, which is located just north of the city, announced that it was going to hold a “Bardathon” in which the complete works of William Shakespeare, both poems and plays, would be read on its stage without stop starting one Thursday night and finishing early the next Monday morning.   The College asked various community theaters to choose a play to read and also solicited actors in the area to come up with a group of their friends to do the same.   If I recall right, David Ogden Stiers, who played Major Charles Winchester on the TV show M *A*S*H, selected “Hamlet” for himself and friends on the theory that it would be his only chance to ever perform the part in public. One of the alums of the College of Marin was Robin Williams, who studied theater there.   When he was asked to participate he chose “The Comedy of Errors,” but he had a unique take on the play: he portrayed all 17 c