Here are some stories about three individuals that deserve all the recognition they can get.
Via Demagogue, we learn of Sgt. Robert Stout who was recently wounded in Iraq. He received a Purple Heart for his wounds...and a discharge for his sexual preference. He expressed his desire to remain in Iraq and do his duty, but he was honorably discharged due to his being an open homosexual. Considering the recruiting nightmares that the military is experiencing, it shows how f*cked up the priorities of conservatives are when his being gay trumps his being a patriotic American wishing to do his duty even after getting a face full of grenade shrapnel. In Ken Burns' The Civil War, we hear about the barrage of questions Dorothea Dix used when choosing nurses for her field hospitals. Near the end of the war, the only question she had was, "When can you start?".
Via Daily Kos, we hear from Rev. Dr. John Lentz, who has brought to light some nefarious practices going on in Ohio churches. The brave few like this pastor are trying to talk some sense into these other churches, but I don't know if it will do any good. However, if churches want to insert themselves and their flocks in the political process, then they need to go ahead and give up their tax-exempt status. To quote George Carlin: "If holy people are so interested in politics, government and public policy, let them pay the price of admission like every body else! The catholic church alone could wipe out the national debt if all ya' did was tax their real estate holdings!"
Via Blah3, we listen to Ted Turner as he gives a speech to a group of CNN employees. He speaks of how the network, which he no longer has a controlling interest of, should cover more international news stories and less "pervert of the day" stories. A perfect message for a network that has lost its way since the glory days. It will probably fall on deaf ears, but this story does affirm a fact about millionaires and political parties: We Democrats may have far fewer rich guys on our side, but at least ours have a lick of common sense.
And on a lighter note, via Boing Boing, we have two very choice links to furniture and shirts that are beyond cool. Though I'd certainly be willing to own and wear that shirt myself, I think I'd pass on the furniture for fear of waking up in the middle of the night and thinking I was trapped in a Tim Burton movie.