Friday, May 29, 2009
Film Festival Description below
Director Ella Lemhagen’s dramatic comedy, adapted from a three-person stage play, hinges on a bureaucratic blunder. After facing much discrimination in their quest to adopt a child, Swedish gay couple Goran and Sven finally appear to be cleared to take possession of an 18-month-old boy named Patrik. However, due to a misplaced punctuation mark, the “1.5-year-old” turns out to be 15—and a homophobe with a violent criminal record to boot. This sitcom-like plot point is transformed in Lemhagen’s hands into an intelligent rumination on tolerance and gradual understanding in a country that has been surprisingly slow to accept the idea of same-sex couple adoption. Initially, all involved are displeased about the situation, especially Sven, who has also had his share of youthful run-ins with the law and knows the violence Patrik is capable of unleashing. The couple eventually coax positive qualities out of Patrik that go deeper than the teen’s initial disgust about having to live with “homos.” With strong performances by all involved, Patrik Age 1.5 is a sensitive, quietly funny, and surprisingly affecting take on the theme of a same-sex couple raising an adopted child.
I loved this film. The acting was terrific, I was especially impressed with Tomas Ljungman in the role of Patrik. There were great character actors in supporting roles throughout. After watching this film I left the theatre feeling great! It did not leave me however wanting to adopt a 15 year old but rather get another dog!
Check out the trailer below and go see this movie. It plays again June 3rd at the Harvard Exit.
Have a good one -
Thursday, May 28, 2009
I know that I haven’t always appreciated what you’ve done for me. There have been so many times that I’ve taken you for granted. Today on your birthday I wanted to list the things that you did for me for which I will be forever grateful:
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
(05-26) 09:07 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- BULLETIN: The California Supreme Court upheld Prop. 8 by a 6-1 vote but ruled that existing same sex marriages can stand. Several dozen people gathered in front of the California Supreme Court building today in San Francisco in advance of the court's ruling on whether to uphold Proposition 8, the November ballot measure in which state voters banned gay and lesbian marriages.
Monday, May 25, 2009
It's early Monday morning as I write this post and we have already traveled over half way on our 583 mile drive home. We got up early so could get an early start which will get us home in the early afternoon. We had a great visit - it always goes by too fast. I thought I would share a few pictures that I took yesterday.
We took a drive to the town of McCloud and ended up in Mt. Shasta for lunch. Lynn and Mike (friends of my parents) joined us in McCloud and for lunch.
This picture was taken in McCloud. There is a dinner train that travels the foothills of Mt. Shasta. It's on our list of things to do one of these days when we are down here.
Mom at lower McCloud Falls. It was a beautiful place - Mom preformed a wedding here several years ago.
Aunt Midge is pictured below enjoying the opportunity to get out of the house. It's always great to see my Aunt. She lives with my parents now, she has advanced Alzheimer's. I have such fond memories of Aunt Midge and to be honest, it's hard to see her as she is now. I am glad she has my Mom. We should all be so lucky.
View of Lake Shasta on our drive back to Mom and Dad's. Houseboats are popular on the lake. Another thing on our list of things to do!
Toby had a great time and surprisingly got along great with all my parents dogs. He had a couple of incidents with the goats that I would just assume forget! He's pretty tired as we drive home.
Mom and Dad - Thanks for a great visit, great meals, and use of the pool and our accommodations. We love you and always have relaxing time at your place. Looking forward to seeing you later this year at William and Sarah's wedding.
Have a good one-
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Bob Egelko, Chronicle Staff Writer
Saturday, May 23, 2009
(05-22) 13:40 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- With partisans on both sides holding their breath, and police braced for protests, the California Supreme Court is poised to deliver its final verdict Tuesday on same-sex marriage.
The court is scheduled to rule on whether Proposition 8, approved by 52 percent of the voters in November, validly amended the state Constitution to reinstate the definition of marriage as the union of a man and a woman. If the justices uphold Prop. 8, they will also decide whether to dissolve the marriages of 18,000 same-sex couples who wed before the Nov. 4 election.
The ruling will come just over a year after the court's 4-3 decision that declared that state law limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples violated the rights of gays and lesbians to marry the partner of their choice and discriminated on the basis of sexual orientation.
The ruling made California the second state, after Massachusetts, to legalize same-sex marriage. Since then, the supreme courts of Iowa and Connecticut have issued similar rulings, and legislatures in Vermont and Maine have also authorized same-sex weddings. Another such law is pending in New Hampshire.
This time, the California court faces a different question: whether a majority of the voters can amend their Constitution to take rights away from a minority.
Lawsuits challenging Prop. 8 were filed by two groups of same-sex couples and by local governments led by the city of San Francisco, joined by civil rights and feminist organizations.
They argue that the ballot measure made such fundamental changes to the rights guaranteed by the state Constitution that it amounted to a constitutional revision, not merely an amendment. A revision requires approval by two-thirds of the Legislature or by delegates to a new state constitutional convention to reach the ballot.
Attorney General Jerry Brown, who ordinarily defends state laws in the courts, joined the opponents of Prop. 8 and argued that the voters lack the power to eliminate "inalienable rights."
Supporters of the initiative, led by conservative Christian organizations, noted that the court has declared only two previous initiatives to be revisions and has denied similar challenges to such far-reaching measures as legislative term limits, the Proposition 13 tax cut and the reinstatement of the death penalty. They argued that the California Constitution places ultimate authority in the hands of the people, and that the court should defer to their judgment.
At a hearing in March, most of the justices seemed inclined to uphold Prop. 8 while validating the marriages that were conducted between mid-June, when the earlier ruling took effect, and election day. Gay rights advocates already are making tentative plans to return to the ballot in 2010 or 2012 if they lose Tuesday.
"If we must reverse Prop. 8 at the ballot, we will do so," Kate Kendell, executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights and a lawyer for couples in the case, said Friday after the court announced plans for the ruling. "We will win - if not on Tuesday, then one day soon."
In the meantime, advocates are planning demonstrations in Civic Center Plaza both before and after the court issues its decision Tuesday. If Prop. 8 is upheld, an interfaith group of clergy is planning to "surround those who are willing to be arrested in civil disobedience as we sing, and move aside as they are arrested." At 6 p.m., the group is planning to march from City Hall to Yerba Buena Gardens.
Police are preparing for huge demonstrations, said Sgt. Wilfred Williams, a police spokesman. He said the city has moved barricades to the Civic Center Plaza area and will have "enough officers to respond and deal with any incidents."
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Next we have Zoe - the New Foundland. She's huge, reminds me of a small black bear. You can see how big she is compared to Toby.
My Mom has has Chinese Crested hairless dogs for years now. The picture below is Lucy her newest addition to the family.
Last dog is KJ (for Kent and Jim). Both dogs are rescue dogs from Washington.
Then there are the goats. I never knew how social goats are and how much personality they have.
This is the twins - Tipsy and Topsy.
Speckles - the newest addition.
And finally the leader of the pack - Jem. I hate to admit it but not only is one of dogs named after me Jem is also my namesake!
We were concerned that Toby would not get along with all the dogs but they have all gotten along well!
There are also a number of outdoor cats but I've yet to capture a picture. Life on the farm.
Friday, May 22, 2009
It used to be that we would get out and get our picture with the sign, now I'm satisfied just getting a picture of the sign. I've got a photo album at home with Kent and I at all the state signs. That was a long introduction to say - we made it to California!
Just south of the border is a scenic view of Mt. Shasta. Much safer place to pull over for a picture! Kent and Toby pose patiently while I capture them with Shasta in the background.
Here I pose looking butch standing in front of our truck!
We took a little detour and got this great shot of Mt. Shasta. It's a beautiful day out, it's not even noon and it's already in the mid 80's! Glad my parents have a pool!
Just a short distance from my parents house from here should arrive just after noon.
Post on the run from my iPhone.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
We later this summer we have a week long driving trip planned over the 4th of July. We are still mapping it out.
This is our first road trip with Toby. As you can see he is having a great time!
We are a little concerned about how he will get along with all the animals that my parents have. I've lost count of the cats but I know of four dogs and three goats. Should make for some great pictures!
We plan to drive as far south to Eugene tonight and then to Anderson the next day. The weather looks perfect and we are looking forward to the visit. I will keep you posted.
-- Post on the run from my iPhone.
Monday, May 18, 2009
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
5/15 - Update to 5/14 Post. Thanks for the overwhelming response to my request yesterday! I appreciate all the emails and those that connected and let me know that they had taken action! I had over 300 hits to the blog yesterday and several emails confirming that they had pledged to decline to sign and that the email that I sent out was forwarded. Thanks and have a great Friday and weekend!
READ - TAKE ACTION - FORWARD
Once again the rights granted to gay and lesbian citizens is under assault by the religious right! Please do as the title suggests and - read, take action and forward! This past session the Washington State Legislature expanded Washington's domestic partnership law and gave registered partners all of the same rights as married couples under State law. But, just as we were ready to celebrate this victory, as monumental as the Civil Rights struggle of 40 years ago, along comes another far right effort to send equality crashing back down into the abyss of bigotry and hate.
California Proposition 8 passed by voters back in November is currently before the California State Supreme Court. The District of Columbia last week voted to recognize same-sex marriages from states that approve them (our Mormon members of congress oppose this of course), and right here in Washington Lawmakers took a huge step forward in protecting Washington families when they voted overwhelmingly to expand Washington's domestic partnership law and gave registered partners all of the same rights as married couples under State law.
This is not the first time I've written about the right to marry. Check out this earlier post (clink link to view) back in November. At that time only two states had laws granting gay marriage rights. We have made a lot of progress. Same-sex marriage has been legal in Massachusetts since November 18, 2003 (check out this link); in Connecticut since October 10, 2008; and in Iowa since April 27, 2009. It will become legal in Vermont starting September 1, 2009 and in Maine starting September 14, 2009. Gotta love the New England States - and way to go Iowa, who would have thought!
Currently, a coalition of "values voters" have filed Referendum 71, which will place SB 5688 before the voters in November. Simply by filing, the right has succeeded in delaying enactment of this expansion of domestic partnership rights to all areas of state law until at least July 26, the deadline for gathering enough signatures.
For those concerned with marriage equality, there is only one strategy: Decline to sign Referendum 71. Don't let the forces of hate and bigotry win another round. When the paid signature gatherer puts Referendum 71 before you, be polite, but firmly decline:
"No, I don't agree with your petition. All Americans deserve equal protection under the law".
Join me in opposing discrimination against same-sex partners.
Pledge to Decline to Sign Referendum 71 today. It's up to the rest of us to ensure opponents of Domestic Partnerships do not take Washington State two steps back on this critical civil rights issue.
As I've stated - Lawmakers took a huge step forward in protecting Washington families when they voted overwhelmingly to expand Washington's domestic partnership law and gave registered partners all of the same rights as married couples under State law. Referendum 71 was filed to repeal the Domestic Partnership Expansion Law of 2009. If referendum backers are able to collect 120,000 signatures needed to put the referendum on the ballot, registered domestic partners could lose 250 legal protections in the November election.
Ask your friends, family, and co-workers to take the pledge also, in order to keep Washington's Domestic Partnership Law.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Have a great day - please join me in wishing Sylvia a happy, happy, birthday!
Kent and Jim
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Fan of Star Trek or not - go see the movie - you will enjoy it!
Later - Jim
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Happy Mother's Day Mom! I hope you have a wonderful day filled with all the things you love the most. Kent and I are looking forward to our upcoming visit when we can celebrate Mother's Day and your birthday with you in person. It's hard to believe that last year we celebrated Mothers day with you in Hawaii. This year we are in Wenatchee celebrating the day with Kent's Mom. Happy Mothers day to both you and Sylvia! I wanted to share a few words of how I feel on this Mother's Day.
Jim and Kent
Saturday, May 9, 2009
Have a great day!