Saturday, January 20, 2007

Hopping Mad

Aside from the general background of the world going awry (Iraq, Bush stupidity, global warming, the Donald vs. Rosie) I've been rather distracted by the smaller dramas in life.

Missing the preschool deadline. Dreaming of an orange Stokke Tripp Trapp from which my son can toss his food in modern style. The unexplicable hatred of our postal delivery mistress who seems to have a pre-printed slip for every sin imaginable (trash cans blocking box, someone parked too close to box, this time: a diagram for the 30-foot arc of snow that must be cleared for her easy approach and egress from the box so as not to require her to GET OUT OF THE CAR).

Yet today in a matter of hours I've got my ire up again. Where should we start?

How about with the 34th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Before you stop reading, don't. This is not about abortion. In's blog, Broadsheet, Tracy Clark-Flory discusses an article from the SF Chronicle called "On the Anniversary of Roe vs. Wade Creating a true 'culture of life'" by Lynn Paltrow. Basically, what Paltrow and Clark-Flory say is that the US does a miserable job at supporting "maternal, fetal and familial health". Amen. Paltrow,

...argues that lawmakers have failed to actually legislate for a "culture of life" by avoiding support of pregnancy and parenthood. Their consideration "of more than 600 abortion-related bills a year creates the illusion that the only aspect of pregnancy that needs attention is abortion."

Double Amen. Like the liscivious old dodgers that they are, lawmakers seem obsessed with regulating abortion, cutting funding for non-biased family planning, restricting access to birth control and other services here and throughout the world. Excuse my language, but missing the entire fucking problem.

The true "culture of life" respects and supports men and women and provides options and support far beyond a prayer and a free baby car seat.

Got my goat #2 goes to the New York Times who today on their main Web page have a picture of Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama with the caption "Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, seen in July, are vying for favor from the same groups, including women and blacks." What kind of a statement is that?

It's as though some numbskull was looking at the pic, scratching his head and said, in the manner of those "you got your chocolate in my peanut butter" commercials, "well, I see a lady and a black. They must be trying to appeal to ladies and blacks!" I mean, I could totally understand the kind of duh commentary from the Cincinnati Enquirer or some other bastion of mediocrity, but the Times? No. Hillary and Barack are (hopefully) going to appeal to everyone who feels disenfranchised and fed up with the Bush government and its catastrophic handling of every situation from A to Z. And that means even white men. Even pickup truck owners. There's pretty much no one that Bush hasn't screwed over. Take a number.

So, my third annoyance is as follows: After issuing a blistering report about the failure of infant car seats to protect babies, Consumer Reports has rescinded its report because its testing methods were faulty. Am I mad at CR? Sure. They need to be RIGHT. They need to get it right. They play too important of a role in making sure that manufacturers' claims are true and push for higher accountability and safety. However, my true ire is reserved for the fact that the current safety standards for infant car seats are insufficient. And, what's more, the LATCH system, which is now required on all new cars to help ensure proper installation of child safety devices, is jinky at best. Anyone who has tried to put their kids' car seat in using LATCH knows what I'm talking about.

Here's a thought: Why not make car manufacturers responsible for working with child car seat manufacturers to make sure that they come out with products that WORK TOGETHER to ensure the best fit and safety for our children. How's that for a revolutionary concept?

Now, back to your regularly scheduled domestic bliss.

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