Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Mix it Up Wednesday

Wing Nuts Away!!!!
States Petition to Secede from the Union...Again?

Say it ain't so! Are folks really considering seceding from the union similar to that other time back in 1860 when they thought it was good idea to go it alone? Of course they vowed that the "South" would rise again and now somehow the re-election of President Obama has set more of these individuals not even living in the south on fire about seceding from the United States. Amazing at it seems, according to The a massive number of petitions are currently circulating on, a website designed to call for action by the federal government or by private institutions on particular causes, calling for particular states to be granted permission to secede. And yes it seems that some Arkansas folk thought it was a good idea as well. I guess it's time to cue "Dixie."

Even though we expected the usual suspects (IE the Southern States). In actuality, the mix of states asking to secede is deeply bipartisan, ranging from the deeply red (Alabama and South Carolina) to the deeply blue (New York) to the swing (Pennsylvania). Nor are the states asking to secede in any way geographically clustered. Northern states (New York), Midwestern states (Michigan), Southern states (Alabama) and Western states (Nevada) have all filed petitions of their own. Most swing states this election cycle, with the exception of Ohio, have a petition of their own, and all of them have at least 1,000 signatures, with even some of the bluest states in the union easily keeping pace with their red counterparts. As I look at this hot mess, all I can say is what the hell is going on here! Maybe those who don't like the union might want to take Mitt Romney's suggestion to "self deport."

I as many of you watched the results come in and as far as I'm concerned it was fair and square including winning the popular vote, electoral college and big kahuna of Florida hands down. If this isn't enough, many GOP talking heads and pundits have 101 reasons why Mitt Romney simply lost the election. Many of his supporters are calling "foul" in terms that somehow the election was marred with trickery and vote stealing on behalf of Team Obama. However, what really took place was as many attempts at voter suppression that I've seen in my entire lifetime plus an all out campaign to mis-inform, mis-direct and cause as much upheaval as possible. President Obama stated in his acceptance speech that we've got to do something about making it easier for citizens to cast their votes. Surely theirs got to be a better way and I can't believe that there's not some collective genius minds out their that could devise an "App" or any other tech gadget to assist with collecting, verifying and counting the votes. If nothing else it would be good to at least make sure that plenty of ballots are available, early voting should be at least 30 days prior and better paid and trained polled workers couldn't hurt. As for those who feel that their states would be better off "going it alone," I think I would take a look a much of the east coast destruction or perhaps reflect on any hurricane, fire, or tornado event in the last ten years as ask yourself...really? Want to know just who all in on this movement check out: states with petitions to secede on  Got thoughts on this one, I'd love to hear about it!

HHS Launches

Health and Human Services (HHS) today announced the launch of, a comprehensive website providing one-stop access to the best and most up-to-date tobacco-related information from across its agencies. This consolidated resource includes general information on tobacco, federal and state laws and policies, health statistics, and evidence-based methods on how to quit. Arkansas' Department of Health has released funding announcements in regards to programming to be developed in this area. Including a sector designed to further study the LGBTQ community which is directly impacted through heart disease and other cancers.
“Tobacco use continues to be the leading cause of premature and preventable death in the United States,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “ builds upon the Obama administration’s commitment to help tobacco users quit and prevent children from starting to use tobacco products.” uses responsive design, making information accessible anywhere, anytime on any platform, from smart phone to tablet to desktop. The website’s unique social media dashboard, “Say it - Share it,” constantly provides real time updates from HHS tobacco related social media accounts, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Infographics, Podcasts, and Tumblr.
“HHS is committed to using technology to help Americans lead longer healthier lives,” said Assistant Secretary for Health Howard K. Koh, M.D., M.P.H. “Today, as we commemorate the American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout, the launch of demonstrates our dedication to reducing the harms from tobacco use. Regardless of age, those who stop smoking and using tobacco can substantially reduce their risk for disease.”

During the last three years, HHS increased efforts to reduce tobacco use by coordinating across its agencies, to provide Americans with access to available cessation and education tools. A few key accomplishments include:

•As a result of the Affordable Care Act, most private health insurance plans must now cover without cost-sharing tobacco use screening and cessation interventions for tobacco users.

•The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) launched Tips From Former Smokers, a national education campaign that featured former smokers living with smoking-related diseases and disabilities.

•The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) built a national science-based tobacco product regulation program to reduce the impact of tobacco use on the nation’s health, especially among youth, such as enforcing the ban on cigarettes with characterizing flavors other than menthol like candy and fruit, as well as other restrictions on tobacco products and marketing.

•The National Cancer Institute (NCI) recently launched Quitpal, a free smartphone app to support smokers working to become smoke-free.

•The Surgeon General released Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults. This 2012 report detailed the scope, health consequences and influences that lead to youth tobacco use and proven strategies that prevent its use.

Just today, CDC, in its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, released new information indicating that 30 of America’s 50 largest cities are now protected by comprehensive laws that prohibit smoking in all indoor areas of private workplaces, restaurants and bars. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration also released a new report today, showing that current cigarette smoking rates among 12-to 17-year-olds fell significantly from 2002 to 2010 in 41 states.

Collectively, these actions better enable the United States to accelerate progress toward achieving the national Healthy People objectives of reducing adult smoking from 19 percent to 12 percent and reducing smoking among high school students from 18.1 percent to 16 percent by 2020.

Visit for information on helping tobacco users quit and providing young people with information on avoiding or ending tobacco use.

Here is The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) new report

For more information on the Surgeon General released Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and young Adults, please visit

For more information on CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, please visit

Tongues Tied Down: What's the 411

By all indications it seems that the highly anticipated BGM support group. "Tongues Untied" seems unable to find any tongues willing to be untied. After several attempts including recognizing a facilitator, the group has yet to take off. At the behest of local case managers, the group was to be spearheaded by same gender loving individuals whom stated that there was a "need" for a venue to host such an outlet. The Living Affected Corporation offered to host the group based on their scheduling and act as a supportive entity as the group scaled up its activity. However to date, the group has been unable to make the connection to those whom the group was being designed. This forum was certainly a proponent of its existence and acted to promote it. Yet as the news of this unfolds, this forum has previously stated that many in the LGBTQ community continuously bitch about what's available and what's not in Little Rock. Especially as they travel to other mega gay hot spots such as Dallas, ATL or Miami. Yet it appears that even if its offered, there seems to be an indifference about participating or engaging the service unless there's some meager financial incentive involved. In our estimation, this bears the point that many local organization are becoming dazed at not how to reach its target population but exactly what these folks find appealing to empower or educate them in self efficacy. There have been focus groups, community meetings and many other attempts to gauge what the agenda is suppose to contain as well as damn near begging any and all stakeholders to come to the table to voice their opinions. Despite all that has been done, there continues to be overall "crickets" within much of the LGBTQ community. There was much clucking in lieu of the Chick-fil-a mash-up which resulted in a win for the conglomerate which cited that it had record breaking sales and profits. As a backdrop to this gay social action the outcomes were marginal. Therefore, as we survey the landscape, nothing seems to have changed on the LGBT front meanwhile the lines around the restaurant locations keep pumping out more sandwiches to happy customer galore.

Certainly I applaud all those whom exercised their right to protest, but we can't overlook the fact that it had no affect and it doesn't appear that the "community gulf" narrowed by any means. So where do we go from here or their or ah hell... anywhere?  I guess we will just have to keep on "wishin and hopin" that the rainbow community will someday snap out of it! Be warned that just because we won the White House this time around, don't hesitate for second that the Grand Old Party folks are not figuring out how they are going to definitely take back their country from both me and you. Often I hear from some readers that I need to offer suggestions on what to do. It seems very clear to me. Volunteering time, donating treasure, engaging policy makers, sharing your voices and basically get off your ass and do something to be about the change that you are demanding. In other words, "if you're not doing nothing, stop saying somethin.."  If additional details or updates develop this forum will be the first to share. If you've got some backtalk or a point of view then by all means bring it. We'll keep the light on for ya....

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