Diary

RedState's WaterCooler 12/16/2016 - Open Thread - Free Speech for all?; Judge blocks TX respect for life rule

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Free speech?

Whoa! Wait! Now, how am I supposed to think? The Right has learned a few things about the first amendment from its far-Left brethren. Freedom to speak one’s mind is good as long as it’s “speech with which I agree.” Fox’s Bill O’Reilly sounds the bell in defense of Right-leaning cupcakes.

O’Reilly called on governors and legislators to monitor college classrooms more directly to prevent professors from “harming students with insane ideology.”

Left. Right. Snowflakes do come in all shapes and sizes.

[Conservative groups are] apparently unaware that conservative students are also requesting “trigger warnings” (typically about nudity, sex and gay themes), according to a faculty survey released by the National Coalition Against Censorship. They also don’t seem to know that Republican undergrads are about as likely as their Democratic classmates to say that colleges should be able to restrict campus speech that expresses “political views that are upsetting or offensive to certain groups,” according to a Knight Foundation survey.

Turnabout is fair play, right? No. It’s not. Free speech is free speech regardless of what side of the street you walk. I say, buck up to all the buttercups out there. Use your college years wisely.

“Don’t get me wrong. Campuses probably need more intellectual diversity (especially from conservative thinkers) and definitely more public debate. But the principled way to achieve those ends is to actually have the debate. Not to shut it down.”


Below the Fold

Inside a square of amber a lapidary intended to polish into jewelry, a 99 million-year-old baby dinosaur’s tail was found. Although the little one was feathered, flying was not to be.

It was one of more than a dozen amber samples with significant inclusions that were collected by [Lida] Xing and his research team in 2015 at a well-known amber market in Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin state [Myanmar]. Two of the other samples contained the dinosaur-era bird wings published earlier this summer.

The majority of Burmese amber is used in jewelry and carvings, and the “Eva” sample had already been subject to shaping by the time it was collected by the researchers.

Update: Texas federal judge blocks and delays until January a new state health regulation set to go into effect the 19th of December. The new rule would mandate fetal remains buried or cremated regardless of development or method of birth. Current law requires the fetus treated as medical waste and dumped into a sanitary landfill.

The Center for Reproductive Rights and other national advocacy groups sued to prevent Texas from requiring hospitals and clinics to bury or cremate fetal remains from abortions or miscarriages rather than disposing of them in a sanitary landfill, as they often do with such remains and other biological medical waste. The rules had been set to take effect Monday.

The lawsuit argues that the rules serve no medical purpose and are meant to shame women who seek abortions and make it harder for doctors to provide them.

Sparks granted a temporary restraining order blocking the rules, then scheduled two days of testimony for early next month. He expects to rule by Jan. 6 on whether they will be allowed to stand going forward.


Today in History. 16 December 1950. President Truman grants himself war-time powers declaring a state of emergency and calling for US troops to prepare for World War III. Just days before, as General MacArthur prepared the army for an “end of war offensive” in Korea, China intervened. They sent hundreds of thousands of soldiers before we were even on the battlefield. Truman cited “Communist Imperialism” for the alarm drawing us into the first military action between Cold War countries.


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