Somebodies and Nobodies: Understanding Rankism

What is rankism? First, some examples; then, a definition.

An executive pulls into valet parking, late to a business lunch, and finds no one to take his car. He spots a teenager running towards him and yells, "Where the hell were you? I haven't got all day."

He tosses the keys on the pavement. Bending to pick them up, the boy says, "Sorry, sir. About how long do you expect to be?"

The executive hollers over his shoulder, "You'll know when you see me, won't you?" The valet winces, but holds his tongue.

Postscript: That evening the teenager bullies his kid brother.

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I dodged a teachable moment last week

I've been taking my children to political rallies, receptions, and house parties since they were babies. Many Iowa Democrats have claimed not to recognize me without a small child riding on my front, hip or back.

At the same time, I've avoided exposing my kids to political scenes likely to turn confrontational, such as anti-war demonstrations. An article I read years ago in Mothering magazine persuasively argued that because young children cannot understand abstract political concepts, they are likely to be disturbed by the anger they encounter at a protest rally. (Sorry, no link--they don't put most of their content online.)

I've also been influenced by my mother-in-law. In her 30 years as a preschool teacher, she learned that young children are easily confused by upsetting images. After 9/11, some of the kids in her class did not understand that television networks kept showing replays of the same scenes. They thought that another plane was crashing into another building every time they saw tragic footage from that day.

Living in the Des Moines suburbs, it's usually no challenge to keep my little ones from volatile political scenes. They get that not everyone votes the same way, but politics to them means coming with Mommy or Daddy to hear a candidate speak, help deliver yard signs or vote on election day.

When Fred Phelps and his clan from the Westboro Baptist Church planned a trip to central Iowa this month, it occurred to me that sheltering my children from their hatred might not be an option.

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WA State Homophobes: We need to keep our white-hoods on!

In the latest twist in the Evangelical Christian attempt to force their narrow minded version of Biblical Law on the rest of us, the group pushing R-71, the so-called "Protect Washington Families" act, which is an effort to overturn the WA congressional decision to extend full rights under the law to domestic partners (notice NO MENTION of Marriage to be seen), the Religious bigots running this side show have gone to court to get a special exemption to the WA state law that requires names on a state referendum to be public. story/923882.html

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Wisc Marriage Ban Suit's McConkey Quit GOP After Palin Chosen as VP

Judith Davidoff has a profile up at the Capital Times (Madison, Wisconsin), on William McConkey, "Citizen McConkey: How a straight, married, lapsed Republican came to wage a one-man battle against Wisconsin's gay marriage ban."

McConkey is the plaintiff in William C. McConkey v. J. B. Van Hollen, the Wisconsin Supreme court case that could doom the gay marriage ban voted into the state constitution in 2006.

Turns out McConkey is a life-time Republican, who lived in Alaska for a time and quit the GOP because Sarah Palin was chosen as nominee for the vice-president.

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Obama throws the GBLT community under the bus

That didn't take long. Why is anybody surprised?  Obama has always been against civil rights.

When asked to specifically define his views on marriage, Obama has stated that he believes "that marriage is the union between a man and a woman.""Now, for me as a Christian, it's also a sacred union. God's in the mix," he added.

I guess now that he is POTUS he doesn't need teh gays. 12/17/aretha-franklin-to-participate-in- inaugural-ceremony/

Aretha Franklin and Dr. Rick Warren, an evangelical minister of the Saddleback Church, are among the select group of people who will participate in Barack Obama's inaugural swearing-in ceremony on Jan. 20.

I thought Obama was a progressive. Looks like he condones homophobia and rewards people who practice discrimination against the GBLT community. This is disgusting and everybody who voted for this man should be ashamed of him.Instead of attacking me, answer the question. After you do that go to and let Obama know what you think about this sickening choice.

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