Shout Peace on Mount Oread

The Oread Hotel, ostentatiously built atop “Mount Oread” next to the campus of the University of Kansas, opened in January.  Its location on the top of the largest hill in town (that would be “Mount Oread”), and thereby it’s immediate status as the tallest thing in any direction for miles (some townsfolk non-jokingly call it a “sky scraper”) is controversial.  Some people in the community aren’t entirely sure that they’re pleased that wealthy developers erecting a private, for-profit business are able to so drastically change their city’s skyline without community consultation.  Others think it looks like a giant medieval prison.  Still others think it adds “class” to a neighborhood characterized by cheap, rundown housing and nicknamed the “student ghetto”.

The controversy has only escalated since the appearance of a vandal’s ominous message on it’s highest wall: SHOUT PEACE.  Just read the comments section on the local newspaper’s story: The Oread hotel falls victim to vandals.

In a town/city of Lawrence’s size, it’s kind of a “round up the usual suspects” sort of situation. But what I love/hate about this little scenario is how a little bit of optimistic, anti-violence graffiti has rocked the whole community, creating contention, divisions, and sad head shaking about what the world is coming to.

Yes, what must the world be coming to when an activist shouts peace from the rooftops? Vandals! Anarchy! Graffiti! Urban crime!

Now that I reside in New York, my view on the situation is rather different than what I imagine it would have been had I never left Kansas. Really, my only reaction is delight. Wealthy business owners and a “high class” establishment for elites have been angered, an anonymous townsperson spontaneously took back a public-facing wall, and a message of SHOUT PEACE was spread.

Hilarious. And awesome. Typical Kansas.

Jana Mackey Day & International Women’s Day

Jana MackeyJana Mackey was a friend of mine in college. Read about her story here and check out the press release below.

For Immediate Release February 27, 2009

March 8th – “Jana Mackey Day in Kansas”

Hays, KS – In the coming days Kansas lawmakers will be joining Governor Kathleen Sebelius in recognizing International Women’s Day on March 8th by honoring a recent victim and fatality of domestic violence.

Jana Mackey, a 25 year old KU law student was murdered by her ex-boyfriend last July in Lawrence. Jana was well known throughout Kansas for her work on many women’s issues.

Governor Sebelius has signed a proclamation recognizing March 8th as a “Jana Mackey Day in Kansas.”

On March 5th Senator Janis Lee (D-Kensington) and Senator Marci Francisco (D-Lawrence) will be sponsoring a resolution honoring Mackey. On the House side, Representative Eber Phelps (D-Hays), Representative Barbara Ballard (D-Lawrence), and Representative Paul Davis (D-Lawrence) will be presenting Mackey’s family with a formal certificate on March 9th.

Mackey, who grew up in Hays, had spent endless hours volunteering to aid victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. She had also served three years as one of the youngest lobbyists at the Kansas Capitol with the National Organization for Women.

After her death, Mackey’s family and friends established a national campaign to help her service live on through others. Symbolic of the number of people who attended her funeral, the Eleven Hundred Torches campaign urges hundreds of ordinary citizens to serve others.

Governor Sebelius has joined the campaign and is calling on all Kansans to set aside time on March 8th to volunteer in their communities.

Special volunteer events are being planned in Hays and in Lawrence on that day.

International Women’s Day began in 1908 with a 15,000 women’s march through New York City calling for equal voting and work rights for women. In 1913 the event was officially scheduled as March 8th. Today International Women’s Day is celebrated world-wide and is an official holiday in 15 nations.

For more information about Eleven Hundred Torches, see their website at

Kansas Women Seeking Abortion May Be Required to Listen to Fetal Heartbeat

Women iz dum bitches


When will pro-lifers figure out that their fake “informed consent” attacks on abortion are ineffective? And that their real agenda is totally transparent?

Get a load of this.

A group of both Republicans and Democrats today introduced a bill related to abortion.

They call it the “Woman’s Right to Know and See” bill.

It would require doctors who use a sonogram to provide a copy of that sonogram to a woman considering an abortion.

It would also require that the woman be allowed to hear the fetal heartbeat.

Reminds me of what went down last year in Oklahoma.

My inside sources tell me that the slimy culprit behind this travesty is one Lance Kinzer, a conservative Kansas State Representative from Olathe. He apparently was also behind a failed attempt to repeal domestic partnerships in Lawrence, KS. Great pedigree.

My anonymous source commented: “So today he introduced the “Woman’s Right to Know and See” bill in the statehouse here in Kansas, which is just appalling. It pretty much forces, by law, doctors who are going to perform abortions in Kansas to take a sonogram, and show it to the woman. But oh no! It doesn’t stop there! This bill would ALSO FORCE (by law!!) the woman to listen to the fetus’ heartbeat. Just in case she wants to change her mind.”

According to anti-abortion websites, 16 states already have some of this breed of “Women’s Right to Know” legislation, including Pennsylvania, Georgia, Louisiana, Minnesota, Texas, Florida and Missouri. (Haven’t found a full list yet.) These laws are sold as “informed consent” for women seeking abortion.

“Folks who are pro-life and even folks who are pro-choice can agree on something, and that is that no one should have an abortion without having full and accurate information about the status of their pregnancy,” said Representative Lance Kinzer, who introduced the bill.

I believe that women should be fully informed about their options and the health and economic effects of all their choices. But in that I differ from Kinzer, who just doesn’t want women to have abortions at all. Who really thinks that women are so stupid that they don’t know what an abortion is? Who could possibly have escaped the incredibly shrill pro-life propaganda that saturates America? No woman chooses abortion without reflection. To claim that women are literally too dumb to understand that abortion is the removal of a fetus is insulting. He shows no interest in making sure women are “fully informed” about the effects of pregnancy and childbirth, which are proven to have significantly more serious health effects than abortion. I wonder why?

Women’s Right to Know laws are simply vehicles to legally coerce women to delay or decide against abortion- they are never supported by anyone who believes in a woman’s right to choose. There is no other medical procedure treated in this special manner, yet there is no stink about people getting their tonsils out without ‘informed consent’ or having breast augmentation without ‘informed consent’.

But Kinzer has struck upon a new fake Women’s Right to Know tactic: previously, such tactics have involved forcing doctors to read anti-abortion statements they disagree with to their patients, giving women anti-abortion written material, forcing women to review images of fetuses at different stages in development, and showing women ultrasound or sonogram images of their pregnancy. Kinzer has struck upon something new here with this fetal heartbeat business. The ONLY reason he would push this coercive and condescending measure into law would be as another attempt to interfere with and shame women who choose abortion.

Sick bastards over there in the Kansas State congress.

h/t Fally

UPDATE: More news coverage in Kansas today.

Lawrence-Journal World

Kansas City Star



In Belgium and the Netherlands, there’s this thing called jumpstyle. It’s like extreme hardcore techno for football hooligans … It looks kind of like Tae Bo mixed with European folk dancing.

Some of the kids are these white-power nationalist skinheads, and the other half are the anti-fascist/non-racist skinhead kids – which are essentially the same thing, except they like to beat up other skinheads instead of beating up minorities. All they do is fight. They show up in their little motor scooters with their Fred Perry sweater-vests and their shaved heads and they smash beer cans on their foreheads and they’re really obnoxious.

From Murderbot Was the Case They Gave Me, an article at about a little college bud of mine. He’s a funny one. Read up to learn about music genres you’ve never heard before.