23 November 2008

bike and bussing it...

the site LA girls are at it again! sssheck it out...cause sometimes you have to be multi-modal, as they say. i used to bike to caltrain on the way to palo alto, and sometimes you just need to take the damn bus.

19 November 2008

CA Supreme Court to hear Prop 8 cases

from the LA Times (cause the SF chronicle is, well, poop.)

"The California Supreme Court has agreed to hear a challenge to Proposition 8, the ballot measure approved earlier this month that banned same-sex marriage. But it also denied a request to put the ban on hold until it considers the challenge.

"From the court:
The California Supreme Court today denied requests to stay the enforcement or implementation of Proposition 8, and at the same time agreed to decide several issues arising out of the passage of Proposition 8. The court’s order, issued in the first three cases that had been filed directly in the state’s highest court challenging the validity of Proposition 8, directed the parties to brief and argue three issues:
  1. Is Proposition 8 invalid because it constitutes a revision of, rather than an amendment to, the California Constitution?
  2. Does Proposition 8 violate the separation-of-powers doctrine under the California Constitution?
  3. If Proposition 8 is not unconstitutional, what is its effect, if any, on the marriages of same-sex couples performed before the adoption of Proposition 8?"

The Times Maura Dolan will have a full story soon."

i'll be waiting with bated breath...

the indignity of commuting by bike: people steal things

so i haven't owned a car in about 10 years. thanks to living in highly dense urban areas in those 10 years, i haven't needed one. i've had a bike for about 8 of those 10 years. while living in brooklyn, the bike was great. i didn't use it to commute to the city, but the SO and i would take ours out on excursions to coney island, upper west side, lower east side, williamsburg, park slope, prospect park loop, central park loop, bars, etc. i think you get the idea. anyway, it was living in SF where i decided to start using the bike as my mode of getting to work because, goddamn(!!), the MUNI sucks mad culo when compared to the subway. and even so, the subway is not all that efficient. since i'm not in nyc at the moment, that's not really my problem. ennnywayse....

so my bike is my "car." i hate to use that word in connection with such a clean way of getting around. and like when people get shit stolen from their car, i got mad/felt a little violated when someone stole my bike light the other night while bici was relaxing outside after a long park in a garage somewhere in the the SF financial district. i usually take my bike light off, but i think i got spoiled by parking in a garage full of office cube types who have their own bike light/can afford to buy their own/are easily traceable due to their obsessive commuting. so, i haven't had to worry about it for the past few months. and due to the time change, i really need that damn light when i go home. cause it's dark, i'm brown, i like to wear black and i want drivers to see me.

so i had to get another light. and i did. and i have to say, knog must know what it's like to be an urban commuter.

when i got my first bike light for bici, i had to have the boo, el macho, put it on bici. my handlebars must be thinner than the standard one (to accommodate my little girly hands) and i had trouble putting it on myself. so the 1/2 girl in me batted my eyelashes and jussslikethat, i had a bike light mount securely on my handlebars.

but this time, i decided i wanted to be a little more self sufficient, so i went to a LBS (not my usual one, but one nonetheless), and looked around a bit. i really did like my first bike light and i'm reluctant to accept change in general, so i was more than a little perturbed to find that my bike light was not in stock and would take a week to get in. nope. i was already riding in the dark for a week, and that was a little scary to me. so, i took a deep breath and looked around. to my pleasant surprise, i found a bike light that cost a little bit more than my old one, BUT, i can take it off everyday very easily and it doesn't slip on the handlebars. wanna see it? here it is. i'm sure you can guess the color by the description of myself earlier in the post.

i already have a benign hipster cyst on my seat post (in pink, just for fun), so i was familiar with the brand and the easy to use quality it entails. i never take that light off the back, but it also is cheap compared to the front headlight. but since they are pretty ubiquitous, and even the most hard up bike thief living in SF can probably find 10 bucks in their crusty old pockets.

so yeah, what did i do today on the light's maiden voyage to the aforementioned financial district garage? yup. i left it on bici. i went during lunch to retrieve it, and it was there. phew. you better believe i won't forget it from now on.

and yes, i totally shamelessly stole the title from bike snob. he's a clever one (btw, the generanalyzer thinks he's a she). i have no idea why since his tone seems like quite the male. but there ya go. whatever.

17 November 2008

another day, another writ petition

so yet another organization i used to work for, equal rights advocates, has filed a writ petition with the CA supreme court.

see the petition here.

they filed this petition along with the california women's law center. here are some choice quotes from their joint press release. again, features a great legal hero of mine, irma herrera. She's the executive director of ERA (and another calitexican...):

"There was a time when women couldn't own property, couldn't vote, and were excluded from equal opportunities in education. If these had been up for a public vote we still might not have them," said Irma Herrera, Executive Director of Equal Rights Advocates. "Our Constitution protects women and minorities from having our basic civil rights stripped away so easily as they could be with Proposition 8. For the Constitution to have any meaning, core principles such as equal protection can't be up for grabs in every election."

amen hermana.

"Proposition 8 opens the door wide open for future majorities to change the Constitution to deny equal treatment to any group they don't like," said Katie Buckland, Executive Director of CWLC. "If Proposition 8 is allowed to stand, the equal protection of our state Constitution will be practically meaningless, promising only that minorities are protected from unfair majority intrustion until the majority says otherwise."

sigh. that's kind of a bleak prospect, but definitely very true. there it is in black and white people.

i took video at the rally/march at the SF demonstration on saturday. i will be posting it in the next couple of days. stay tuned.

14 November 2008

equal justice society rocks my socks

EJS is a place i used to work. they do good work, check it out. i've also written for a few of their newsletters.

they joined up with their usual collaborative team members to file a writ petition to the california supreme court. these members include the mexican american legal defense and educational fund (MALDEF), CA's chapter of the NAACP, the NAACP legal education and defense fund and the asian pacific american legal center. looks like tobias wolff, legal scholar extrodinare and member of the EJS board from UPENN law school was mainly responsible for the writing of the petition.

yup, yup. here is the press release. go keith! and this part is the part that resonates with me so strongly. not only do i have a personal interest in seeing the passage of prop 8 be reversed and set on fire, but also if they do this to one group, who is to say they wont start taking away the rights of other minorities over which so much blood has been shed and resentment set in? honestly, this fight is just bigger than one can conceivably say in one sentence. Karen Wang is my new hero:

"Consistent with core equal protection principles, minority communities must not be stripped of their fundamental rights by bare majority rule," said Karin Wang, Vice-President of Programs for the Asian Pacific American Legal Center. "California went down this path before when the majority population chose to bar interracial marriages involving an unpopular minority: Asian immigrants. The state Constitution exists exactly for this reason - to protect the fundamental rights of minority communities."

and simply put...

"Direct democracy cannot override the California Constitution, which requires more than a majority vote to deprive a minority group of their fundamental rights," said John A. Payton, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

right on. and to go out with a BANG!, here is my favie fav...eva patterson:

"We would be making a grave mistake to view Proposition 8 as just affecting the LGBT community," said Eva Paterson, president of the Equal Justice Society. "If the Supreme Court allows Proposition 8 to take effect, it would represent a threat to the rights of people of color and all minorities."

amen.

ew. prop 8 is getting pretty ugly...

ok, now we all know i'm pretty vehemently AGAINST prop 8. and i'm actually pretty much against marriage too. but who am i to say that two people can't get divorced if they want to?

keith oberman had some nice comments to say about prop 8 passing. namely that he can't believe it passed.



then i read this sensational headline in the LA times today. ugh: "L.A. Mormon temple closed after a suspicious envelope arrives in mail." are you fucking kidding me?! i'm cynical enough tto believe in two scenarios. both involve stupid people doing stupid things. one, the more "obvious" one is that some angry anti-prop 8 person did this. the second, and i believe more plausible explaination is that someone took advantage of the situation of it being trendy to kinda really hate the mormon church at the moment and decided to bring some attention their way. ugh. grow. the. fuck. up. moving on...

now this is something i can get behind. people are now protesting and boycotting establishments whose owners supported prop 8. in order to donate, you have to put down your occupation, name, and other identifying information. if you felt strongly enough to donate to support prop 8, then i also strongly feel that you should be prepared to deal with the consequences. maybe it's because the texican taught me that at a young age by boycotting grapes. new era, new cause, same tactics. money talks as they say. and i bet it even screams louder now that the economy is going to shit.

12 November 2008

gender, eh?

i've always said i'm 1/2 dude even if my outsides happen to reflect i'm 100% chick. i've always felt that way, and i even hated dresses when i was little. i still kind of do, but i'll squeeze into one every now and then for the right occassion. i even have the pictures to prove it.

anyway, so when guanabee was like, hey you, check out the genderanalyzer, why i just had to. what did i find out? they think i'm 69% (for real, it's not a made up number) dude: RESULTS: We think http://calitexican.blogspot.com is written by a man (69%).

but how do i tell them they aren't quite right, but not quite wrong?

11 November 2008

finally! california speaks well about texas... i am in (ess)shock

indeed, as i've long known (since i was able to put together a coherent sentence), texas is not a pure red state. too bad the results from many an election and laws currently enacted prove otherwise. but, really, what do they prove? that old conservative white men, and recently, white women were/are in power? are you really surprised by that? that they were the majority and wrote laws to protect themselves? again, are you really surprised by that? well, as i've again long known being born to a tejana of at least two generations and a tejano of possibly three, we're rising. and for once, we think our voice can actually matter. its written in our spiritual history; it was bound to happen.

and finally! someone from california has the insight NOT to just spew rhetoric about texas they've heard, seen and studied. but have never visited. and that is crucial in talking about something you "know" about. just like californians surprised the US by voting for prop 8, i wasn't surprised. just because we may have two of the most liberal cities in the US within the border, we also have a large voice that goes largely unheard or ignored. and the EXACT flipside is true for texas. besides, it's more fun to make fun of texas, right? or because it's more socially acceptable not to question california's status of a fertile breeding ground for all things progressive.

so i strongly applaud you LA times for writing this story.

even the nytimes has some sort of similar story. you just have to dig at it a bit. i took a picture of the nytimes map that shows how the elctorate differed from 4 years ago. they made it very simple, if you voted more blue, the deeper the hue. if you notice, most of the US voted bluer. and texas...well, i'll let the picture speak for itself. (when i put it up that is...it's at home and i am not.)

true results and reform is just on the horizon. i can feel it. and it makes me feel like a teenager anew with hope and possibilty that my home state can overcome prejudices far and wide to truly reflect what goes on inside its borders. of course it's not all fairy tales and lollipops in texas. but it is better than what most people i've talked to on the east and west coasts think. it really is. just visit it and you'll see. i promise. shit, even i was surprised. san antonio went blue. like on the actual day. such a strong military town went blue? even my prejudices were tested. i'm a fan of breaking down preconceived notions. and i'm proud to say i'm from texas. always was, always will be.

living in california right now though...i'm disappointed. yup, i am.

08 November 2008

wow

just wow. this has been a really crazy week. we've created meaningful history in both the best sense and the worst.

obviously, you may have heard by now that barack obama is now president-elect of the united states. there was not a dry eye in SF and that includes my boo, el macho.

here's a cute video of three blocks north from where i celebrating myself:




no snark, just pure joy.

and then california voters decided that the rights of animals and teenagers were more important than gay marriage. yes, all are important. ALL are. i've talked so much about this subject this past week, i've read a lot about it online, i've read the writ petition, i've been angry, i've cried, and i just don't know what else to add to the discussion at the moment. i'm exhausted. mentally and physically.

yesterday i briefly attended the march. i got overwhelmed with emotion, i was crying and walking in the streets.

this weekend it's time to rest. revel in our global victory, revolt in the hate that voters approved (if only narrowly).

i'll end on this note. i sent an email to my mom on 11/3/08. i had just gotten off an election protection night shift, and i was too excited to sleep. i had another election protection shift at 5:30am, so i really needed to sleep. visions of democracy were bouncing around in my head...i grabbed my iphone and typed out the email. forgive the typos, but they are staying:

"I know it sounds cheesy, but I can't sleep because I'm so excited for tomorrow in our great nation's history. I feel like I'm witnessing, living and changing history that will be remembered for decades to come. Even if something awful happens and the democrats don't win and prop 8 passes, I know I could not have done more to help try to become the change that in which I believe. I will be able to sleep at night both satisfied with my efforts and fired up to become the change we all so desperately need.

"As I'm phone banking and manning hotlines, waiting in line to vote, I can hear the voices and indeed actual stories of people who never before believed they had a voice or that their vote mattered. In line to vote there was a black man yr age that had never voted before. Tonight I heard the story of an early election ballot go haywire to him finally voting, only then to have the clerk confess to the voter that his county is allowed a 1% attrition rate. Phone banking helped me realized that people may agree with a cause, but that the proposition as written is so counter-intuitive that it can mess up even the best of intentions.

"I often laugh at the phrase "this is a really critical time" in part because life always is and when you say that, it only dilutes the message you wish to send. But right now really is a critical time. We are at wars for causes that are both tangible and intangible. We are simultaneously experiencing the worst economic crisis of my relatively short lifetime. We in California can set the stage for what is undoubtably the inevitsble next civil rights challenge. We can try to steer the boat around tomorrow. And I'm glad I can do what i can to help.

"I may not agree with the pro prop 8 people, but I also think it's foolish for people to take their signs away. That really disturbs me. But first amendment rights we can discuss on the 5th. Tomorrow is all about elction rights and protection. Even for those republicans and homophobic people.

And on that note, good night :)"