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Behind the Aegis

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Member since: Sat Aug 7, 2004, 03:58 AM
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My crazy first LEGAL gay anniversary.

This day, a year ago, my partner and I were allowed to legally marry in the State of Oklahoma. It has been an interesting year, but not all that different from some other years, and certainly more tame than a few years we have had together. I posted about our marriage last year, so I thought I would give people a "peek" into the wildness of a first year gay anniversary. Prepare yourself...

I had cards placed in the kitchen and den so my husband would find them when he woke up. The puppies got him up early as they often do. Of course, the raging storm helped too as my chihuahuas do not like thunderstorms. Oh yeah, he was home today because he was sick (since Saturday). Flu shot only works so well. LOL! But the real party started when I got up and went down stairs to him hacking up a lung. I was now fighting off his cold. I think I won! We exchanged pleasantries, no kissing for obvious reasons, and settled in to watch some TV. He promptly fell asleep. We woke up, watched some more TV, then I was off...to the doctor's office. After waiting for an hour, I was finally informed my biopsy was negative! YEA! No stomach cancer! They still have no fucking clue what is wrong with me, but hay, it ain't cancer so I am kvetching too much! Then back home with some KFC chicken pot pie. No since in cooking as he really couldn't eat too much and that is what he wanted. I did actually plan to make a Mustard peppercorn eye of round, but I wasn't about to put all that effort into something he couldn't eat. Guess what we are having tonight?!

The rest of the day was filled with more TV, napping, puppy potty breaks, MORE TV and napping, then it was time to put him to bed, where I had one final card. We hugged goodnight (remember, he is still sick and we got plans next week) and I put him and the four doggies in bed.

Boring, right? Well, even us gays have to take a day off from wild parties and what ever else bullshit the rightwing makes up about us. The point is my marriage is legal. Our lives didn't change profoundly with the exception of the following: I was now a spouse and could get insurance which reflected it; we could file as married on our taxes which greatly increased our refund (we got some serous cheddar back), we didn't have to worry about the home, cars, money, if, G-d forbid, something were to happen to him or me, it would go directly to the other, and, as of last June, my marriage didn't become unrecognized if we went from state to state.

What didn't change? Our love for each other; our commitment to one another; our desire to be with one another...in sickness and health!

I just had to share my happiness.
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 01:39 AM (115 replies)

77 years ago, November 9, 1938..."Kristallnacht came...and everything was changed" - Max Rein (1988)

Kristallnacht, or The Night of Broken Glass, took place on November 9, 1938 and dragged into November 10th. The Nazi party, as well as everyday Germans, went on a spree of violence throughout Germany, Austria, East Prussia and the Sudetenland region of Czechoslovakia attacking and murdering Jews, burning down synagogues, and attacking and destroying Jewish owned businesses and homes. The event was retribution, along with the prevalent anti-Semitic attitudes, for the assassination of Ernst vom Rath by a Polish Jew, Herschel Grynszpan, in Paris, France. Over 1000 synagogues were damaged or destroyed. At least 91 Jews were killed in the two days, though the numbers are thought to be higher based on deaths because of mistreatment during the pogrom and various suicides because of Kristallnacht.

Hundreds of synagogues were attacked, vandalized and looted and dozens were set ablaze and destroyed. Firemen were instructed to let the synagogues burn but to prevent the flames from spreading to nearby structures. Additionally, shop windows in thousands of Jewish-owned stores were smashed and the wares within looted. Jewish cemeteries were also desecrated and many Jews were attacked by mobs of Storm Troopers (SA). At least 91 Jews died in the pogrom. source

This event was a precursor of things to come. After the event, several thousands of Jews were deported to various concentration camps and others "repatriated" to Poland. While the Germans added insult to injury by making the Jewish community pay for damages, the world condemned the events, a few countries even withdrew or ended diplomatic contact. However, little else was done. These events didn't occur in a vacuum, an onslaught of lies and continuous anti-Semitic propaganda made this event palatable, even acceptable, to the average German.

As the synagogue in Oberramstadt burns during Kristallnacht (the "Night of Broken Glass", firefighters instead save a nearby house. Local residents watch as the synagogue is destroyed. Oberramstadt, Germany, November 9-10, 1938.
— US Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Trudy Isenberg

Shattered storefront of a Jewish-owned shop destroyed during Kristallnacht (the "Night of Broken Glass". Berlin, Germany, November 10, 1938.
— National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Md.

Burning synagogue in Baden-Baden

Synagogue burning in Frankfurt

Interior of Essenweinstrasse Synagogue in Nuremburg following Kristallnacht.

Buchenwald Roll-Call for those arrested during Kristallnacht
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Mon Nov 9, 2015, 03:53 AM (24 replies)

The Little Known Holocaust, Before the Death Camps: Babi Yar (Graphic photos)

Almost 75 years ago, between September 29 and 30, 1941, 33,771 Jews were murdered at a ravine just outside of Kiev, known as Babi Yar. They weren't sent to the death camps of Poland or other places. When the Germans had finally taken Kiev, after a few months of battling the Soviets, they issued the following edict:

All (Jews) living in the city of Kiev and its vicinity are to report by 8 o'clock on the morning of Monday, September 29th, 1941, at the corner of Melnikovsky and Dokhturov Streets (near the cemetery). They are to take with them documents, money, valuables, as well as warm clothes, underwear, etc. Any (Jew) not carrying out this instruction and who is found elsewhere will be shot. Any civilian entering flats evacuated by (Jews) and stealing property will be shot. (source)

Of course, the word "Jew" was not used, instead it was the equivalent of the word "kike" and was posted in both Russian and Ukrainian. (source). Once the Jews gathered, they were taken to the gorge, made to strip naked, then in groups of about 10-20 people, they were systematically gunned down by an Einsatzgruppe and fell into the gorge. Men, women, and children were sent to their deaths in this manner. Over the next few years, the total of those murdered at Babi Yar was believed to have grown to 100,000 and include Jews who escaped the initial massacre, the Roma, communists, and prisoners of war.

The grotesque nature of the event wasn't over; as the Soviet army advanced to reclaim Kiev in 1943, the Nazi's did what they could to hide the evidence of what happened. They "enlisted" several prisoners, some were Jews, to get rid of the remains. First, they had to dig up the bodies, then they used special hooks to pull the bodies from the grave, many of the bodies had fused together. To further the desecration, they were instructed to search the bodies for any valuables which may have been missed, especially gold teeth, and remove them. A pyre was created of which the base was made of the gravestones from the local Jewish cemetery. Once the bodies were reduced to ash, then the ash was sifted to check for gold and pieces of bone, which were then pulverized.

This was The Holocaust. Most people are only familiar with the death camps, and while they certainly played a part in the destruction of the Jewish people of Europe, as well as many others, including gays, Romani people, Poles, and the list goes on, events like Babi Yar were happening well before the death camps were established. The continued to happen throughout the war, just on a much, much smaller scale. Given some recent events and demonstrations of the lack of knowledge about the Holocaust, I felt it was important to bring this event to light here and give people an opportunity to learn something they may not have known about the Holocaust, WWII, and the Nazi regime and its depraved cruelty.

An aerial photograph of Babi Yar taken by the German air force. September 26, 1943.
— National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Md.

Nazi SS Special Commanders line up Kiev Jews to execute them with guns and push them in to a ditch, already containing bodies of victims, The Babi Yar Massacre, World War II, 1941. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

The Babi Yar memorial to the Jewish victims (picture from http://thewanderingscot.com/), which wasn't allowed until 1991 and vandalized in 2006 (source).
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Wed Sep 30, 2015, 12:58 AM (49 replies)

The lynching of Leo Frank and the lessons it imparts 100 years on

In the early hours of Aug. 17, 1915, a 31-year-old man took his last breath as the table beneath him was kicked out and the short rope hung from an oak branch snapped his neck.

The man hanging from that tree was an American Jew by the name of Leo Frank. Although Frank was the only Jew in the history of America lynched by a mob, his death had a profound and lasting impact on American Jewry.

Earlier, Leo Frank, a superintendent at a pencil factory in Atlanta, had been sentenced to death on questionable evidence for murdering 13-year-old Mary Phagan in 1913. She had worked at the factory. His trial was a foregone conclusion; Frank had already been convicted in the court of public opinion.

The Northern Jew was the obvious target of the people’s rage. A hate-infused trial ensued, and Frank was portrayed as the insidious Jewish infiltrator, taking what he pleased.

A conviction quickly came, and Frank was sentenced to death.

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Thu Aug 20, 2015, 12:47 AM (1 replies)

Jews in the 20th Century

This is an hour long program about the Jewish experience in the 20th century. It is about the experience as a world minority.
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sat Aug 15, 2015, 03:16 AM (0 replies)

The Jewish Americans

These are very long, so it is not a 5 minute blub, it is 6 hours about the history of the Jewish experience in the United States. It seems these videos are severely needed!
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sat Aug 15, 2015, 03:11 AM (2 replies)

UK anti-Semitic incidents soar in first half of year – report

The number of recorded anti-Semitic incidents in Britain soared in the first six months of this year compared with 2014, probably due to a surge in reporting among fearful Jews, a report by a Jewish community body said on Thursday.

There were 473 recorded incidents between January and June this year including two classified as “extreme violence”, said the Community Security Trust (CST), which advises Britain’s estimated 260,000 Jews on security.

That represented a 53 percent rise compared to the same period last year, said the CST which has recorded anti-Semitic incidents since 1984.

Across Europe, Jews have warned of a growing undercurrent of anti-Semitism, fuelled by anger at Israeli policy in the Middle East and social tensions over immigration and increasing economic hardship under austerity policies that have helped far-right movements gain popularity.

Those fears were exacerbated in January when an Islamist militant gunman killed four people in a Jewish supermarket in Paris, followed a month later by an attack on Copenhagen’s main synagogue.

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Jul 31, 2015, 02:10 PM (18 replies)

A brief history of homophobia in Dewey decimal classification

Libraries in more than 138 countries organise their resources according to Dewey decimal classification, or DDC for short. This proprietary system is the most widely used in the world. The DDC number reflects specific subject areas. Browsing shelves for books on similar topics, grouped together to make them easy to find, is both the beauty of and the frustration with the Dewey decimal system.

Once upon a time and yet not so long ago, LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex) topics have variously been assigned to DDC categories such as Abnormal Psychology, Perversion, Derangement, as a Social Problem and even as Medical Disorders. Is it any wonder that someone browsing ‘similar’ library items in this area could feel alienated?

Addressing inclusion and alienation, in June 2015 Linda Rudell-Betts of the Los Angeles Public Libraries wrote a post on making sure its LGBTI Collection was assigned DDC call numbers from the twenty-second edition, so that its users are not confronted with earlier, demeaning classifications:

Dewey decimal classification (DDC) itself would assign lesbians, gay men, bisexual people and transgender people (LGBTI people) to a call number, 301.4157, as a kind of ‘abnormal sexual relations’ (modified fourteenth edition of the DDC).

Admittedly the fourteenth edition of DDC was published in 1942, but nonetheless, the spectre of earlier hurtful classifications can linger even when improved numbers have been assigned.

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:42 AM (4 replies)

WATCH: Cardin rips C-SPAN caller who questions his Jewish faith, loyalty to US

Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) ripped a caller to C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” on Wednesday who suggested Cardin's Jewish faith poses a conflict of interest with his duties as a U.S. senator.

“I'm normally pretty tolerant to people who ask questions, but I'm not to your assumption,” said Cardin, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

"I take great offense to that. Our loyalty is to America, our concerns are with America, our religion is our personal business and should have nothing to do with an evaluation from anyone as to our objectivity on issues concerning America,” he said.


“Mr. Cardin looks like a regular white guy, nice guy, but in actuality he's a Jewish white guy,” said the caller, identified as Eric from Georgia. “If the public was informed of that by C-SPAN, I think they would take his comments differently.”


Some things never go out of style.
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Mon Jul 20, 2015, 12:11 AM (9 replies)

The international war on LGBT people

As Americans gathered in cities across the country to celebrate the legalization of same-sex marriage, several thousand Turks also tried to march in support of rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

Police in Istanbul attacked them with water cannons and rubber pellets. The repression reflected the narrowing of freedom under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan; in past years, Turkey was the site of the largest gay pride marches in the Muslim world.

But Turkey is hardly alone in vilifying, isolating and threatening LGBT people. While 25 countries and territories now allow gay marriage, 75 nations treat homosexual behavior as a crime.

In 10 countries, it is punishable by death — and even where it is not, just being gay is often fatal. A May U.N. report found “continuing, serious and widespread human rights violations perpetrated, too often with impunity, against individuals based on their sexual orientation and gender identity.”

“Since 2011, hundreds of people have been killed and thousands more injured in brutal, violent attacks,” the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights reported.


Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue Jul 14, 2015, 12:17 AM (19 replies)
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