Friday, July 12, 2013

U.S. House Passes Federal Farm Bill; Strips Out Food-Stamp Program

This is NOT the U.S. Senate Bill that I posted about last week, but we still need to watch all the Federal Food Stamp bills for “sex offender” amendments since Senator Vitter set the bad example and if any such prohibition is added I will post about it so you can contact your Federal representatives.


By Jonathan Weisman and Ron Nixon July 11, 2013

WASHINGTON — Republicans muscled a pared-back agriculture bill through the House on Thursday, stripping out the food stamp program to satisfy recalcitrant conservatives but losing what little Democratic support the bill had when it failed last month. It was the first time food stamps had not been a part of the farm bill since 1973. 

The 216-to-208 vote saved House Republican leaders from an embarrassing reprisal of the unexpected defeat of a broader version of the bill in June, but the future of agriculture policy remains uncertain. The food stamp program, formally called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, was 80 percent of the original bill’s cost, and it remains the centerpiece of the Senate’s bipartisan farm bill.  

Even in a chamber used to acrimony, Thursday’s debate in the House was particularly brutal. Democrats repeatedly called for roll-call votes on parliamentary procedures and motions to adjourn, delaying the final vote by hours and charging Republicans over and over again with callousness and cruelty.  

Republicans shouted protests, trying to silence the most strident Democrats, and were repeatedly forced to vote to uphold their own parliamentary rulings.  

Representative Frank D. Lucas, Republican of Oklahoma, the chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, said he would try to draft a separate food stamp bill “as soon as I can achieve a consensus.” But conservatives remain determined to extract deep cuts to the program — cuts that members of both parties in the House and Senate have said they cannot support.  

House and Senate negotiators could produce a compromise measure with the robust food stamp program the Senate wants, but such a bill would almost certainly have to pass the House with significant Republican defections.  

Asked before the vote Thursday if he would allow a compromise bill to come to a final vote in the House, Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio shrugged and said: “If ands and buts were candy and nuts, every day would be Christmas. You’ve heard that before. My goal right now is to get the farm bill passed. We’ll get to those other issues later.”  

By splitting farm policy from food stamps, the House effectively ended the decades-old political marriage between urban interests concerned about nutrition and rural areas who depend on farm subsidies.  

“We wanted separation, and we got it,” said Representative Marlin Stutzman, Republican of Indiana, one of the bill’s chief authors. “You’ve got to take these wins when you can get them.”  

Democrats denounced the bill as a naked attempt to make draconian cuts in the food stamp program.  

“A vote for this bill is a vote to end nutrition in America,” said Representative Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut.  

When Did Modern Society Begin Assuming that All Adult Men Who Enter a Park, a Museum, a Fair or any Public “Fun Event” Without a Child Must be There to Abduct or Molest One? Today’s Example: John St-Onge Barred From Legoland Discovery Center.

While driving yesterday I was listening to the radio and caught a morning show talking about John St-Onge being denied admission to Legoland (see article below). 

It’s despicable that modern society has become so paranoid of all men that public areas are now off-limits to them because “we” believe they pose a risk even though they’ve done nothing wrong. 

Those who have been mandated to bear the public label “sex offender” face discrimination and banishment daily by state laws banning them from museums, parks, campgrounds,  lakes, beaches, golf courses, ski resorts, state and county fairs, fast-food establishments with playgrounds and this list goes on. Plus private establishments with policies like Six Flags and Disneyworld denying admission to all registered sex offenders, no exceptions. Then there have been airlines forcing men to move seats away from minors and water parks calling the police on grandfathers. These fear mongering, knee-jerk over-reactions or policies being projected onto every adult man are truly heartbreaking. What has happened to our society? 

Lenore Skenazy has written about this before “when almost any man who has anything to do with a child can find himself suspected of being a creep." She dubs it "worst-first" thinking: Immediately assuming the worst, even if it's highly unlikely. "Then we congratulate ourselves for being so vigilant."   

Policies like these are based on assumptions and you know what your mother told you about assuming something. You make an ass-out-of-you-and-me. 

To assume that a 63 year old man and his adult daughter are at Legoland Discovery Center not to admire the Lego’s but to create an unsafe environment for children might be one of the most pathetic policies I’ve come across in the last 5 years of being an advocate for reforming our sexual laws, registries and legal restrictions and I’ve shaken my head in dismay too many times to even count. 

This is what a zero-tolerance mentality does to society, destroys it. 


John St-Onge Barred From Legoland Discovery Center Because He Was Unaccompanied By A Child  By Ryan Grenoble, July 10, 2013
A self-described "Lego fanatic" isn't feeling the love after a trip to the Legoland Discovery Center in Vaughan, Canada, ended before he was even allowed inside.

John St-Onge, was barred from entering a Legoland Discovery Center because he was not accompanied by a child. His adult daughter, Nicole, had traveled with St-Onge on the three-hour drive from their hometown of Windsor, Ontario, to realize her father's long-time dream, but that was not enough to get them through the door, CTV News reports.

“I felt discriminated against,” St-Onge recalled to the National Post. “[I was thinking] ‘What, are you painting a label on my back, that I'm a pedophile?’ That's what really, really, really bothered me. What do you think I'm going to do in there?”