Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Flaming Cats of Inequality

Most people do not understand much about how equal rights work in the American system, but I do. It is kind of easy, really.

Here, I will explain it to you.

If you look closely, you will see that I’ve got nothing in my hands except a flag and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Nothing up my sleeves, no hidden assistant in the wings, no strings. 

If you can pay me some attention for just the next couple of minutes, I can show how YOU might have the right to receive a FLAMING CAT free of charge from your government. I can show how, if you do NOT receive a flaming cat free of charge from your government, you might be able to sue for discrimination against left-handed people.

This would probably be a good time for me to mention that I am not a licensed attorney.

Now, back to the flaming cats!
Sure, we all want one, or two, or maybe even three, but how can any of us be guaranteed even a single flaming cat in this cold, cruel world of ours?

After all, flaming cats are nowhere mentioned in the United States Constitution. I checked three times.
What this means is that (as unbelievable as it sounds!) our government can choose to give a flaming cat to absolutely NOBODY.
On the other hand, it also means our government can choose to give a flaming cat to absolutely EVERYBODY .**
But what about this? What if the government decides to do something in between those two extremes? What if the government decides to give flaming cats to SOME people, but decides NOT to give flaming cats to OTHER people?

Get ready, because this is the part where equal rights come in. This is the part where we start asking, “Why? Why these people but not those?”

Let’s say that on the day they start handing out flaming cats, I am the first one in line. I get my flaming cat and I go home. I mean, I got mine, right? As you would expect, I name my flaming cat “Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan”  and she is wonderful and makes me very happy. 

But as soon as I leave the Department of Flaming Cats, the unthinkable happens. Bob – who is my gay, black, transgender, Jewish disabled Vet friend – goes up to get his flaming cat, and the bastards tell him no!

Why?!
Bob sues the bastards. Bob loses his suit. They say the reason Bob loses his suit is because the bastards had acceptable REASONS for treating him different than they treated me.

Next, it is time for my friend, Billy, to go up and get his flaming cat. Now, Billy is a great guy: No criminal record. Not made out of hydrogen. We all figure he’s good to go.

But the bastards tell him no, too!

Why?!
Billy sues the bastards. Billy loses his suit. They tell Billy the reason he loses his suit is because, sure enough, he is pure goat. Goats do not have equal rights. The bastards can treat goats different than they treat me.

This surprises us a lot, because our conservative friends have been saying that if all PEOPLE get equal rights, then GOATS will have to get equal rights, too. 

Next, my friend, Belloq, goes up to the counter at the Department of Flaming Cats to get her flaming cat. Belloq is not a criminal. Belloq is not made out of hydrogen. Belloq is not pure goat. 

Of course, the bastards tell Belloq no.

Why?!
Belloq sues the bastards, claiming discrimination based on her being left-handed.

Belloq wins!

When Belloq wins, half of the country freaks out. The State of Alabama secedes from the Union. Rush Limbaugh says this: “Activist judges just gave left-handed people special rights!”

Governor Rick Perry says this: “The Court just made up a constitutional right to a free flaming cat!”

I love Rick Perry like a father, but in this case, he is wrong. So is Rush Limbaugh. (Alabama, on the other hand, is probably right to secede...)

It’s as simple as this. Repeat after me: If the government treats two people differently, it needs an acceptable reason for doing so.

If the government treats two people differently, it needs an acceptable reason for doing so. 

If the government treats two people differently, it needs an acceptable reason for doing so. That is just the way it works. 

I hope this clears a few things up.

If you need me, I will be with Belloq, playing with our flaming cats.
----------------------------------------
**As we all know, flaming cats were responsible for 37.61% of GDP in 2009, meaning that they affect interstate commerce a great deal. Therefore, Congress has the power to enact the Flaming Cats Act of 2013 under the Commerce Clause (Article I, Section 8, Clause 3) of the United States Constitution. 

42 comments:

  1. This is fricken brilliant!! Seriously, (and I have read a lot of stuff about flaming cats and equal rights), I have never read such an insightful and to-the-point treatise on equal rights.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, benni! It took too long to do and didn't turn out as well as I would have liked.

      But I spend a lot of time arguing politics online, and I get tired of having to explain this particular point. From now on, all I have to do is link it!

      Delete
  2. Love it! Can I get my flaming cat when I get my free Obama phone too?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you kidding? Best I can tell from the emails I get, only black folks can get Obamaphones.

      Which means the President gets half a phone and his kids get three-quarters of a phone each.

      Delete
    2. Crap. I was afraid of that. I wanted an iPhone 5. I am not happy with my Droid. If the prez only gets half a phone that explains the Blackberry.

      Delete
  3. can i get a flaming cat if i'm a canadian jewish lesbian with disabilities who lives in the dominican republic? i'm right handed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd always assumed that socialist Canada had a better program than the U.S. in this regard.

      Is the Ministry of Flaming Moose not active anymore?

      Delete
  4. Well said, Katy! But where can I go to get my flaming cat? Yesterday I didn't know I needed one, but now I'm not sure I can live without one (especially since the government gave you one)!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd say, "You flaming cat is in the mail," but I'm not sure how that wuld turn out.

      It takes a lot for me to do a blog that touches on politics, law, or rights.

      But this week, I found myself trying to explain to someone what it means when we say the government has to "treat similarly situated persons similarly," and decided I needed a more vivid portrayal of the idea.

      Sort of a C+ job of it. But there's always next week.

      Delete
  5. What beautifully twisted genius. <3 <3 <3

    Rarely is such lucidity & elegance applied to constitutional issues in public discourse. Why, if only you had been my Civics teacher in high school, I would have a goddam flaming cat!

    Hey, Belloq looks cute! Therefore, she should definitely have a flaming cat!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, DanP!

      Belloq should definitely have a flaming cat. In the best possible way.

      Delete
  6. Bravo post! I think I will have to use it as my default link for this particular argument too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! People seem to generally understand about how black people, Jewish people, women, etc., can't be discriminated against.

      But I tell someone like:
      a) After the passage of the 14th amendment, it was mostly corporations claiming discrimination for the first couple decades; or
      b) George W. Bush WON Bush v. Gore in 2000 on Equal Protection grounds
      ...and people get confused.

      Delete
  7. Fourteenth Amendment vs Second Amendment and Flaming Cats

    "It is the usual last resort of constitutional arguments to point out shortcomings of this sort. But the answer is that the law does all that is needed when it does all that it can, indicates a policy, applies it to all within the lines, and seeks to bring within the lines all similarly situated so far and so fast as its means allow." -- Mr. Justice Holmes (Buck v. Bell)

    "When I was young and naive, I used to pay some attention. I listened to WORDS spoken authoritatively into microphones. To my still-dewy ears and my still-dewy brain, they seemed like the WORD Terrorists. Terrorists of the WORD, twisting meanings to fit agenda or whim." -- Seeker of truth

    ----------
    Some Thing Like This

    Dissident Aggressor -- Sin After Sin -- Judas Priest

    Grand canyons of space and time universal
    My mind is subjected to all

    Stab! Bawl! Punch! Crawl!
    Hooks to my brain are well in
    Stab! Bawl! Punch! Crawl!
    I know what I am, I'm Berlin

    Through cracked, blackened memories of unit dispersal
    I face the impregnable wall

    Stab! Bawl! Punch! Crawl!
    Hooks to my brain are well in
    Stab! Bawl! Punch! Crawl!
    I know what I am, I'm Berlin

    Exploding, reloading, this quest never ending
    Until I give out my last breath

    I'm stabbing and bawling, I'm punching and crawling
    Hooks to my brain are well in
    I'm stabbing and bawling, I'm punching and crawling
    I know what I am, I'm Berlin

    Which leads me to the root cause

    At its heart freedom is anarchy. It is the state of being completely and utterly free to do as you please. In a society such absolute freedom does not work as some would take actions that harm others. Absolute freedom and anarchy was certainly not what the framers of nations had in mind when they created the different constitutions that set limits both on the people and on the governments

    In Buddhism it is taught that the idea of absolute freedom of choice (i.e. that any human being could be completely free to make any choice) is foolish, because it denies the reality of one's physical needs and circumstances

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Justice Holmes'opinion in Buck v. Bell also has one of my favorite quotes of all jurisprudence: "Three generations of imbeciles is enough."

      Delete
    2. had to share
      http://media-cache-ec2.pinterest.com/upload/169729479676062914_z6T2wkjg_c.jpg

      Delete
  8. You`ve got such an incredibly beautiful and sexy smile Katy, it drives me absolutely wild with lust and desire. By the way, whats a "flaming cat" ?.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess I should have started with some more explanations and definitions. I thought everybody knew what a flaming at was - IF you know what I mean.

      Delete
  9. Katy, i was just thinking, because of his murderous homo-phobia Jervaise Brooke Hamster would have to write "the first amendment" as "the first a-girl-d-girl-t" ! ! !.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it's sort of like speaking Smurf.

      Delete
  10. Wait a second, I'm beginning to suspect this whole flaming cat thing is a thinly veiled metaphor. Me am smart.
    You forgot where instead of giving them a flaming cat, once the people sue, the government gives them something similar to a flaming cat, but not exactly a flaming cat. The government gives them an ice dog. It's close to a flaming cat, meant to placate the uppity "different thus scary" people. This method of separate but equal fools no one but the argument is made that they should be happy with what they get. More litigation follows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have a picture I found somewhere of a cat with a top hat and monocle who is smoking a cigarette. I had that ready to go, but didn't end up doing it.

      "It's the same thing, really! Why can't y'all be satisfied with this smoking cat? Giving you the same kind of incendiary cat as I get offends me!"

      Delete
  11. Flaming Cats be damned, i just visit this site to enjoy the stunning beauty of a certain little Miss Katy Anders.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Flaming Cats of Inequality don't like you, either!

      Delete
  12. your obedient internet rodentJanuary 27, 2013 at 11:47 AM

    Katy, i read this post and i still haven`t got a clue what its about. Er...i was just thinking Katy, next Friday is the 1st of February and its the 25th anniversary of the day we lost the angel (Heather O`Rourke), last year you did promise to do a tribute of some kind to Heather, next friday would be the perfect time to do it, re-vagina Katy you DID promise me didn`t you ! ! !.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Katy: "If the government treats two people differently, it needs an acceptable reason for doing so."

    Astra: "Don't count on it. They're coming for all of us eventually, starting with Vengeful Cocksuckers like me."

    End.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, the way the system is supposed to work and the way it actually works are often two different things. For a bunch of idealists, your generation broke things pretty good...

      Delete
  14. What? Belloq didn't get the left handedness beat out of her while being told that being left handed is of the devil like I did? That's how my dad showed me Christ's love.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jesus is a handy thing to have around. Almost everything - good, bad, or indifferent - can be attributed to him if you try hard enough!

      He built my hot rod and he was way cool.

      Delete
    2. I thought Jesus was being held hostage in Adri's attic.

      Delete
    3. I'll have to ask her about it.

      Seems like he could get out of there pretty easily. Unless the walls are lined with kryptonite.

      Delete
  15. Katy, Cal, do you know the two main problems with the lies and hypocrisy that still poisons and plagues vast areas of American society ! ?: (a), 97% of that lies and hypocrisy is derived directly from religious bull-shit (astonishing as that may seem in 2013 in THE most technologically advanced country in the world, a ludicrous and quite unfathomable contradiction in terms), and, (b), Americans actually enjoy being liars and hypocites, they revell and wallow in their own lies and hypocrisy and they much prefer it over the truth. Its vitally important that those two problems be completely eradicated from American society over the next 20 or 30 years if America is to retain its place as the "number 1 nation on earth" throughout the rest of the 21st century ! ! !.

    ReplyDelete
  16. "For a bunch of idealists, your generation broke things pretty good..."

    Yeah; we did. Horribly. We didn't see it coming - we really didn't.

    Now, as Hunter Thompson put it so well, as we live in a closed society where everybody's guilty, the only crime is getting caught. In a world of thieves, the only final sin is stupidity.

    He passed no judgment on this, and didn't need to - he also didn't need to point out that this is the nest we chose to shit in; the bed we made - and while none of us 'intended' to live here, we created it anyway.

    We voted for Reagan, for chrissakes.

    Most of the lies, corruption and other bullshit truly is from religion - and we continue not only to tolerate it, but to promote it.

    While it is true - that when the government treats two people differently, it needs an acceptable reason for doing so - we still shouldn't count on it, any more than we should count on 'closure' from some Imaginary Friend.

    They're still coming for us....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You know, if we could set up a good system and enforce that system, we could continue to be the biggest bastards we can be.

      If we could ensure equality under the laws and if we could make sure laws could not be twisted to some megalomaniac or lobbyist's agenda, then the rest of us could pursue self-interest knowing that there is this mechanism built into the system that ensures we can't get too far off-track.

      The problem is that the mechanism to keep things on track can be bent.

      Oh, and the people who think they want theocracy under the rules of Leviticus and Deuteronomy are delusional and can't be reasoned with.

      Delete
  17. Hey Astra, answer me a question, over 200 years ago Thomas Paine said "THE greatest threat to freedom is government", why then do we still insist on having that abomination with-in our society ?, a society that is 'supposedly' obsessed with freedom, democracy, and liberty, and yet it still allows this murderous and loathsome ogre called government to exist in its midst, a murderous and loathsome ogre that is in direct contradiction and opposition to literally everything that America 'supposedly' stands for. like i said maybe you could explain that.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Strickly speaking, that true, how can there ever be real and true freedom in any country that has a government that governs, having any kind of government makes a total nonsense of the idea of freedom.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Technically, government is supposed to be citizens creating rules for their community. If me and my neighbors have a governing body that creates a rule that you can't knife our pets or throw rocks at us, you might see that as limiting your freedom. It is, in a way.

      The problem isn't the existence of government. The problem is one of degree.

      Pure anarchy seems fantastic in theory. It's a favorite on the internet - usually of people whose life experience involves very little life and a lot of Dungeons and Dragons.

      Delete
  19. Thanks Katy, thats quite a good answer. One other thing i`d like your opinion on though is: why does government still use words like, "government", "govern", "power", "control", and "authority" to describe themselves and what they do ?, when they know how offensive and objectionable those words (and their meanings of course) are becoming to people ! ! !. Its like no matter how supposedly democratically a government is elected with-in a country or community, they`re still determined to use these ludicrously out-moded words, terms, and phrases, when they know full well that the use of them is becoming more irritating, demeaning, and belittling to people all the time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not offended by those words, so I don't know.

      In fact, if we are handing an institution power to enforce rules against us, I'd prefer they DID call it power instead of pretending it is something else!

      Delete
  20. You bloody dirty filthy disgusting pedo animal, you should be bloody-well burned at the stake.

    ReplyDelete
  21. jervaise brooke hamsterJanuary 29, 2013 at 12:15 PM

    Katy, the pictures you created for this post remind me of Terry Gilliams animations (circa 1970), very clever little darlin`.

    ReplyDelete

Hey you! Why not leave a comment to tell me what you think of what I wrote?