scharrison's blog

Tuesday Twitter roundup

And now we've got armed insurrectionists marching into government buildings and threatening to kidnap and execute Governors. Shame on us.

Orange County Commissioners approve resolution on slavery reparations

But it was not a unanimous vote:

“Even though the vote was 6-1, Earl McKee…was voting against one section. The way I had originally written [the resolution] he was fine with.”

McKee confirmed this on Thursday. "Let me be very clear,” McKee said. “I have no issue or concern with opening or continuing the conversation of if, how, should or when reparations should be discussed. The conversation should be how we ensure a level playing field without obstacles to anyone.”

The only way to "level the playing field" for a population that has been shackled, lynched, denied property rights, segregated, denied access to municipal water & sewer, and a whole laundry list of other discriminatory practices by government and the private sector, is to give them genuine, tangible resources. How you do that is of course the critical question, and I'm not sure the OC Commission is going to put the focus where they need to:

Women's health care and reproductive freedom are a top priority

Julie von Haefen has some things to say:

The 72-hour waiting period requires 43% of patients to travel considerable distances across county lines to access reproductive health care and thereby places an undue financial burden on women in our state who need safe and reliable access to family planning services. This requirement isolates rural women from their support systems and burdens them with more financial barriers to abortion access than other women in our state. Taking time off work and waiting three days to receive health care is extremely burdensome for many people in North Carolina, and is especially burdensome, if not impossible, during a pandemic. By repealing the counseling and 72-hour waiting period requirements, our state can break down the financial and political barriers that block many in our state from accessing the crucial reproductive health care they need.

Going into lecture mode now to air a Festivus grievance that has been bothering me for some time: Protecting a woman's right to choose is a core Progressive tenet. I don't care what other Progressive credentials you might burnish, if you choose to leave this one out, you have missed that boat completely. It's not a throwaway issue, something that can be casually disregarded, as I have seen as recently as 2-3 weeks ago. Lecture over, back to Julie:

Coal Ash Wednesday: Trump EPA rule delays closures until 2038


Coal lobbyist Andrew Wheeler has a special place in hell waiting for him:

A coalition of nine environmental groups is suing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over a rule that extends the life of giant pits of toxic coal sludge, risking contamination of nearby water sources.

The July rule allows for the more than 400 coal ash pits across the nation, where coal residue is mixed with liquid and stored in open-air, often unlined ponds, to stay open as late as 2038.

We can't be shed of this monster soon enough. While it remains to be seen how much Duke Energy will try to take advantage of this, I have a hunch it will depend on if they're allowed to fleece ratepayers for cleaning up their own mess or not. A few words from Earthjustice:

Monumental upheaval: Vance obelisk to be removed in Asheville

Honoring slave owners was never a good idea:

The Buncombe County Commissioners voted 7-0 on Monday to remove the obelisk erected more than a century ago in an Asheville square to honor Zebulon Vance, a Civil War officer and North Carolina governor who owned slaves, news sources reported. The Asheville City Council was scheduled to vote on whether to accept the recommendation on Tuesday.

In November, nine of the 12 members of the Vance Monument Task Force voted to remove the Vance monument. Two of the task force members called for repurposing the monument.

In place of my normal self-righteous rant, I will simply let Zebulon Vance himself explain why this monument needs to be removed:

Tuesday Twitter roundup

The Board of Elections should never have allowed that elevator picture in the first place. She didn't have to campaign hard during election season, because her smiling face was etched into everybody's memory,

Climate Change Chronicles: Warmest November in recorded history


If we keep breaking these records we're going to break the planet:

Scientists with the Copernicus Climate Change Service said that global temperatures in November were 0.1 degree Celsius (about 0.2 degree Fahrenheit) above the previous record-holders, in 2016 and 2019. November 2020 was 0.8 degree Celsius (or 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit) higher than the average from 1981 to 2010.

Warm conditions persisted over large swaths of the planet, with temperatures the highest above average across Northern Europe and Siberia, as well as the Arctic Ocean. Much of the United States was warmer than average as well.

Considering that Northern Europe, Siberia, and Northern Canada have massive quantities of methane stored in the permafrost, saying this is "not good news" is a huge understatement. As if that were not enough, we're only a few weeks away from the auctioning of oil and gas leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR):


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