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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

On Gay Unions in Brazil - Is it Going to Happen This Time?

It's now official!

The Brazilian top court - Supremo Tribunal Federal -  is to decide on May 4th, 2011, in a plenary session, whether gay unions are legally binding. Two cases have made it onto the list of trials for the day.


The LGBT community is ecstatic in that if this miracle should ever happen, their lives will become a lot easier.

Judges' lives as well.

Our magistrates find themselves having to resort to acrobatics to recognize same-sex unions and they have a particular hard time when it comes to the division of assets, inheritance, plus this, that and the other.

Same-sex relationships are a fact of life and there is no denying that gay folks need all the help they can get if push comes to shove and they find themselves in legal problems.

There are state courts all over the country, already on the forefront, which have given same-sex couples the support they need.

Writing for the STF, Justice Carlos Ayres Britto - in response to one such case brought to the court by the governor of Rio de Janeiro - has recently told the
O Globo newspaper that we are in for a nice surprise.

You will get a cookie if you guess who is trying to throw a monkey wrench (some of you say spanner...) in the works...

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Happy Birthday, Porto Alegre!

Photo: National Geographic


The Pampas. The early inhabitants of South America. Portuguese and Spanish Colonization. Cattle rustling. The French Revolution. Positivism of Auguste Comte.

Massive European immigration: Portuguese from the Azores, Germans, Poles, Italians, Jews and African slaves. Julio de Castilhos. War heroes. Order and Progress. RS. Porto Alegre, 239 years old on March 26, 2011.

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Friday, March 25, 2011

On How to Stop Bullying

Craft unfinished text. Research.

We've all seen the alarming video by now. Are we glorifying violence?

While bullying is reprehensible is more ways than one, the scenes we have just witnessed give us all reason to rethink school-yard behavior.

As is clear in the story, the bullyed child had had enough of the daily abuse and decided to grab the bull by the horns. While most TV shows exploiting the video for ratings and fodder for their mostly ..., eye-brows are raised in more peaceful quarters.

Parents have to take a more hands-on approach when the push comes to shove (no pun!). How in the world could that child be enduring years of abuse without his parents taking action to stop what many view as...

Schools are apparently immune to criticism. Not anymore.

Steps have to be taken for schools to include more sports and other physical activities in their curriculum. Clearly those children need to vent all their pent-up emotions...

Is TV viewing to blame? The so-called Cultural Industry prevalent in Anglo-Saxon countries (Nope, globally, remember imports...) in which nitrogliceryn is the norm and violence is the daily bread. Gaming. Computers?

In Australia:

In Brazil, in Alagoas state.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

On President Obama's Visit to Brazil

Photo: Itamaraty
They agreed to cooperate in advancing democracy, human rights and freedom for all people bilaterally and through the United Nations and other multilateral fora, including ensuring respect for human rights in the context of the democratic movements and transitions; strengthening the UN Human Rights Council as recently demonstrated in the case of the creation of the Commission of Inquiry on Libya; promoting respect for the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals through the establishment of a Special Rapporteur at the OAS; and improving the conduct of free and fair elections regionally and globally, including through the promotion of human rights in the context of elections and increasing their accessibility to disabled persons.  The White House

A post about two very important people meeting to discuss the fate of most of the Western Hemisphere is news whether you deem it so or not. Both Brazil and the United States of America are continentally big. When they move, people notice

People notice even more when these important people are the first black man ever to reach the highest post on Earth and the first woman ever to be at the helm in Brazil.

So it happens that the American president landed in Brasilia last Saturday, March 19th. He came for trade talks. He brought along with him several of secretaries and business people eager for new opportunities. Ms Roussef, the Brazilian president, was on hand to greet him at the Planalto Palace.

Behind closed doors, we read, they agreed on several mutually beneficial trade agreements and to us, part of the LGBT community, the introduction on this post in italics.

That, laconically, is very important. Most of you will agree...

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Friday, March 11, 2011

On Mother Nature's Ring of Fire, It Ain't Pretty

The Pacific Ring of Fire (or sometimes just the Ring of Fire) is an area where large numbers of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions occur in the basin of the Pacific Ocean. 

In a 40,000 Km - 25,000 mi -  horseshoe shape, it is associated with a nearly continuous series of oceanic trenches, volcanic arcs, and volcanic belts and/or plate movements... Wikipedia

Yiikes! It's Mother Nature at it, again!  This time in Japan. Tsunami alert in the whole Pacific region.

We have been witnessing Her awesome powers in the last few years. That we know of. Surely she has been at it since for ever. They ain't pretty. She has been squirming from the bottom of her womb, causing untold catastrophes to unfold in, but not exclusively, the Ring of Fire.

Double whammys she will pack on those not paying attention to her. For all the attention is called for. No use your praying and pulling your hair out and speaking in tongues to get her to stop (Sorry!). She won't. Ever.

Now, there is one little thing you can do. You might be the lucky one to beat her at her own game. You will have to hit the books and burn the two o'clock oil and see if you can devise ways and gadgets to decipher Her mysterious riddles, er, ways. 

Oh, Mother, You're a Bitch!  Would you allow us to build us a ship to get us out of here before you turn on Yourself?

The wonders of this and outer worlds... 

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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

On When it is International Women's Day

No testosterone today. I pay homage to this pool of Estrogen that is part of my life. Congrats, gals, girls and gurls!

Here, on the Third Rock From the Sun, some of you are at the helm in nations near and far. Some of you have been enslaved in countries we rarely have a glimpse of in the news.

Plus, some of you are dying for lack of care. Some of you are fighting wars. Some of you are being abused and hacked to death. Some of you are carrying bricks in bonded labor in exotic countries to the East. Some of you are playing soccer on our side of the pond. 

And still, some of you are cooking lunch and getting your kids ready for school. Some of you spend years of your lives picking up your kids from school. 

Some of you are just taken for granted. Some of you don't even know you could be what you want to be.

As the Sun comes up every morning, may you accomplish much more than you have so far while keeping in mind that there are still some of you still under the yoke of tyrannies, ideological or otherwise.

Of course, some of you are not superwomen; it is written in songs, watch:

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

On When Hypocrites Fall

So this is it: when we drink, we spew sewage. I'm talking about the fashion designer who's been shown the door for shooting crap and who has now "unreservedly" apologized for swallowing his foot.

Actually, our real Selves emerge when the cousciousness brake is disabled by virtue of too much drinking or consumption of other chemicals... So, think twice before you order it double on the rocks.

Also, no amount of bible-thumping and pushing will preclude the ill-effects of (to some) or make us immune to (most of us) our raging hormones. We read in the American press that one anti-gay pastor has recently fallen from Grace and bitten the dust. With a thud! He was seen masturbating at a park frequented by children in southern United States...

Sad though it is to see that sooner (rather) than later, we live to witness such proponents of do as I say but don't do as I do being carted off to the pillory for ill behavior, we say: we rest our case!

If you want to lead the sheeple, lead by example. We (others...) are all cop to your jive.

Good riddance!

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