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International Blasphemy Day; Donald Trump is Florida Man
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Published Friday, September 30, 2016 @ 7:24 AM EDT
Sep 30 2016

Among other things, today is International Blasphemy Rights Day, specifically commemorating the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy (or Muhammad cartoons crisis) and in general to show solidarity with those who challenge oppressive laws and social prohibitions against free expression, and to support the right to challenge prevailing religious beliefs without fear of violence, arrest, or persecution. In the 1952 landmark case of Joseph Burstyn, Inc. v. Wilson, the U.S. Supreme Court found that "...the state has no legitimate interest in protecting any or all religions from views distasteful to them which is sufficient to justify prior restraints upon the expression of those views. It is not the business of government in our nation to suppress real or imagined attacks upon a particular religious doctrine...

While there is no federal blasphemy law, Massachusetts, Michigan, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Wyoming have laws which reference blasphemy. Pennsylvania passed one in 1977, specifically prohibiting blasphemous business names. McKeesport Rep. Emil Mrkonic wrote the bill after a mail-order firearms dealer filed incorporation papers for the "God Damn Gun Shop." The law was eventually struck down in 2010.

By the way, the gun shop is still listed as active.

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I never thought of it this way, but they're right:

"Something bigger was afoot that afternoon than a wealthy New Yorker returning to his pied-à-terre. This was the craziest election in history returning to its spiritual home- Florida- where it could pay homage to its central totem: Florida Man.

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Some people born on September 30 who said some interesting things: S.M. Stirling, Elie Wiesel, Truman Capote, and Deborah Kerr.

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Star Trek is one of the few successful science fiction universes in which the future is not a dystopian nightmare. So it's no suprise to learn the cast and crew of the epic franchise say 'Never has there been a presidential candidate who stands in such complete opposition to the ideals of the Star Trek universe.'

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And then there was that time back in 1990 when Spy magazine wanted to find out "Who is America's cheapest zillionaire?" So they sent a bunch of rich people each a check for 13 cents. Only two people deposited them: Donald Trump and the Saudi Arabian businessman Adnan Khashoggi.

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Oops. Donald Trump's charitable foundation- which has been sustained for years by donors outside the Trump family- has never obtained the certification that New York requires before charities can solicit money from the public, according to the state attorney general's office.

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The number of people under the age of 25 showing up at the Golden Gate Bridge intending to commit suicide has increased fivefold since 2000. A new texting hotline has been implemented, signs posted on the bridge urging people in crisis to text GGB to the number 741741. The idea is to connect young people — or anyone who needs help — to counselors who can calm them down, determine their location and dispatch a patrol officer who can get them to safety.

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As Ohio gets older, whiter, and less educated, the state is no longer as important in choosing a President. Clinton can find her 270 electoral votes elsewhere.

And while we're talking about the Electoral College:

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The New Yorker says the Trump University business is worse than you think. Trump hadn't handpicked the instructors, and he didn't attend the three-day seminars. Moreover, the complaint said, "no specific Donald Trump techniques or strategies were taught during the seminars, Donald Trump 'never' reviewed any of Trump University's curricula or programming materials, nor did he review any of the content for the free seminars or the three day seminars." So what were the attendees taught? According to the complaint, "the contents and material presented by Trump University were developed in large part by a third-party company that creates and develops materials for an array of motivational speakers and Seminar and timeshare rental companies." The closest that the attendees at the seminars got to Trump was when they were encouraged to have their picture taken with a life-size photo of him.

Have a great weekend!


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