Happy Thursday!

I hope everyone has had a wonderful week!

Sadly, the other day a KCK police officer was shot and killed. Such an awful tragedy. Any time a police officer, fireman, or EMT dies in the line of duty it is a tragedy. These are people who spend their lives supporting and serving us, protecting us from each other, saving our lives. The man who apparently shot the officer in this case has been captured, and if he is truly the one who shot Detective Lancaster I hope he spends the remainder of his life in prison.

RIP Detective Brad Lancaster. Thank you for your service to us all. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

There have been 55 homicides so far in 2016 in the KC metro. Most of those were from gunshots. It’s ridiculous the amount of gun violence here. We have got to find a way to make things better. I don’t have the answers, but I know there has to be a way.

Kansas school funding is messed up. Seriously. I know this shows up on the news, so I’m not shocking anyone by saying that, but it still remains true. I don’t understand why it’s so important to cut taxes on businesses that you’re willing to underfund education to do it. To cut funding on a lot of things that help people, actually, but I’m just talking about education here. Even the recent changes the legislature made to try to meet with the demands of the Kansas Supreme court are little more than renaming the same exact funding the districts already were receiving. It didn’t increase funding and didn’t fix anything.

Over the years, despite what some conservatives in the legislature claim, Kansas has lowered the funding going to schools. I read somewhere that the aid to schools has gone up over 100% since 1992. That is both true and ridiculous. It’s true, the districts in Kansas do now spend more than double what they did in 1992. But not all of that is aid from the state. And more importantly, that is not accounting for inflation or increased costs.

The Kansas Constitution requires that students be provided a decent education, and that the state pay for it appropriately. But then the state legislature, and Governor Sam Brownback, think reducing spending is the way to go anyway. Even though many times in the past the state courts have ruled doing so would be unconstitutional. They all argue that going to block funding did not violate this, but they are being intentionally ignorant in this case. Ask any parent if it costs the exact same to raise 12 children as it does to raise two. Of course not. It also doesn’t cost the same to educate 10,000 students as it does to educate 5000 students. Their block funding completely ignores the fact that districts have a varying number of students from one year to the next. A district that had 30,000 students last year may have 32,000 this year. Those extra 2000 students aren’t free to educate.

So what happens when a district suddenly has more students, but the same funding as it did before? It cuts. It cuts administrators first, which makes the schools in the district run less efficiently. It cuts maintenance staff, meaning the schools have repairs that take longer to fix and school grounds aren’t as well maintained. It stops funding new education materials, meaning students don’t have access to things they’re going to need. It means swelling class sizes and teachers who no longer have time to make sure students understand the lesson well.

Who is hurt by this funding issue? The children, of course. But they don’t hold any political sway yet, so that’s fine with Governor Brownback and his supporters, apparently. After all, he’ll be long out of office by the time any of these kids are 18 and can exert any substantial political pressure. I get so sick of hearing think of the children being used as an argument, mostly because it’s usually used by those trying to institute laws that limit the equality and freedom of LGBT individuals. In this case I think it is the right argument, though. Think of the children!

May The Fourth Be With You!

It’s Star Wars Day!

That’s the day where geeks all over the world, including moi(imagine that part in a Miss Piggy voice), get to celebrate the greatest thing to ever happen to movies. Think about the science fiction movies that came before Star Wars. Think about the special effects, the music, the plots. George Lucas, for all his later faults (Han always shot first, George) still was the genius and the driving force behind all this. Before Industrial Light & Magic came along nobody really did special effects in such a brilliant, complete, and believable manner. So because of this all, I say thank you George Lucas. And May the fourth be with you!

You may notice some difference in design of this site. I’m talking to you, my lone reader. Yeah, I just decided to try a completely clean look. I’m not even sure I’m going to add the header image back in. I kind of like the plain, clean look right now. I’ll probably switch it out again sometime, but I had to do something because the old theme was broken during some update and didn’t re-flow in a correct responsive manner at a lot of screen resolutions. It was either do a bunch of editing to make it work or update the theme. I decided it was time for something different anyway, so here’s what we have.

Hope everyone enjoys the better weather this weekend! Well, at least everyone here in KC.

PS: Trump vs. Clinton for President? Interesting. Um… wow, let’s just say I wholeheartedly hope a certain one of these two are not our next President. I find the idea of a certain one of them being President very scary.

Please people, vote! When the time comes, make your voice heard.

Just another week

There were some positives and negative this week, in my opinion. In Missouri a “Religious Freedom” bill failed. This is a very, very good thing. It was not a religious freedom bill, it was a ‘let me discriminate legally’ bill. These kind of bills have been introduced all over the country, notably in North Carolina and Mississippi, and rarely ever truly represent anything approaching a bill that only protects religious freedom.

If you get all the advantages that our laws give to a person when they organize and present themselves publicly as a business, then you don’t get to pick and choose your customers. Period. End of statement. If you want to discriminate, don’t run a public business. That’s just the way it is, people. Didn’t we already have this argument, anyway? Didn’t people claim their religion kept them from serving minorities fifty years ago? Wasn’t it just as despicable back then?

When we allow discrimination against any one of us, we all suffer

That’s my take on that.

Which brings me to the Target bathroom policy. This was a wonderful statement Target made, and I appreciate that they risked it. It’s hard for a business to take a public stand on something that is such a hot button issue right now. They are clearly on the right side (see my feelings about religious freedom bills above if you aren’t sure what my thoughts are about this kind of thing), but it could cost them business in the short term. Yeah, it will eventually come back, but right now people are organizing boycotts and making big threats. It’s ridiculous. If you don’t think trans people are using the bathroom next to you right now when you go into a public bathroom then you’re delusional. Most of the time you would never notice, I promise you. The silly arguments made in support of blocking trans people, the argument that men are going to go into a bathroom and attack little girls, then claim it was okay for them to be in there because they identify as a woman, is just utterly ridiculous and insane. A law, or policy, blocking trans people from the proper bathroom isn’t going to help this. The guys they claim to worry about, the pedophiles and rapists, are pedophiles and rapists! Do you think they’re ignoring the law about attacking children, but would suddenly listen to a law or policy that told them they couldn’t use the women’s restroom? That’s an insane thought, and a flimsy basis to okay discrimination.

–On to something else–

There are Koalas at the KC Zoo now!

Isn’t this little guy below adorable?


I hope to make it to the zoo soon to see them. I’ve been waiting and waiting. Hopefully it won’t be long!

I saw the Peanuts movie last week. I thought it was really good. You should all see it. Snoopy was a little too nice to Charlie Brown, and there was way too much time spent on the Red Baron, but it was a good movie anyway.

Everyone have a good week!