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Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 78,289

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Men think they are math experts, therefore they are

Just because more men pursue careers in science and engineering does not mean they are actually better at math than women are. The difference is that men think they are much better at math than they really are. Women, on the other hand, tend to accurately estimate their arithmetic prowess, says Shane Bench of Washington State University in the U.S., leader of a study in Springer’s journal Sex Roles.

There is a sizeable gap between the number of men and women who choose to study and follow careers in the so-called STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in the U.S. This is true even though women outperform their male counterparts on mathematical tests in elementary school. Bench’s study examined how people’s biases and previous experiences about their mathematical abilities make them more or less likely to consider pursuing math-related courses and careers.

Two studies were conducted, one using 122 undergraduate students and the other 184 participants. Each group first completed a math test before guessing how well they had fared at providing the right answers. In the first study, participants received feedback about their real test scores before they were again asked to take a test and predict their scores. In the second study, participants only wrote one test without receiving any feedback. They were, however, asked to report on their intent to pursue math-related courses and careers.

Across the two studies it was found that men overestimated the number of problems they solved, while women quite accurately reported how well they fared. After the participants in Study 1 received feedback about their real test scores, the men were more accurate at estimating how well they had done on the second test. The results of Study 2 show that because the male participants believed they had a greater knack for maths than was the case, they were more likely to pursue maths courses and careers than women.

Read more: http://www.psypost.org/2015/06/men-think-they-are-math-experts-therefore-they-are-35310

Louisiana holds the line on same-sex marriage; while many states move ahead, no licenses issued

Although the U.S. Supreme Court issued a historic decision Friday, saying same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry, not one marriage license was issued to gay or lesbian couples across Louisiana.

The state’s top political leadership declared it wasn’t yet time to comply with the ruling, and local officials fell in line.

This left Louisiana almost alone in total opposition to moving forward with same-sex marriages. Most states that didn’t allow gay marriage before Friday — including Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas and Georgia — agreed to swiftly act on the high court’s ruling. In addition, some counties across Texas and Alabama on Friday began issuing marriage licenses to couples eager to wed.

While a Mississippi official echoed those in Louisiana who resisted immediate implementation of the decision, news reports indicate at least one county issued some licenses.

Read more: http://theadvocate.com/news/12761270-123/louisiana-holds-the-line-on (Baton Rouge Advocate)

Chevron donates $5M for programs to help attract engineers to Texas A&M

Texas A&M University's goal of attracting 25,000 students to the Dwight Look College of Engineering in the next 10 years received a $5 million boost from a longtime corporate partner.

School officials traversed the state Thursday to announce the formation of the Texas A&M-Chevron Engineering Academies at four Texas community colleges. Engineering Dean Kathy Banks said the program, which will co-enroll students at Houston Community College in Houston, Texas Southmost College in Brownsville, Alamo Colleges in San Antonio and El Centro College in Dallas into A&M engineering classes, will help meet the state's growing demand for engineers. She expects the academies to be a boon for the college's 25 by 25 initiative by enrolling students who could not make it to College Station because of their location in the state or their financial situation.

"We pledged to get the best and brightest students, so that means providing different pathways," Banks said. "Those students should have the same opportunities for a Texas A&M engineering degree. This should allow us to get all students in all circumstances and situations."

Qualified students in one of the four academies will take general credit classes at their community college's tuition rate and take engineering classes taught by Texas A&M professors at Texas A&M's tuition rates, A&M Provost Karan Watson said. Once the student's two-year degree is completed, they will transfer to Texas A&M and complete their engineering degrees in College Station.

Read more: http://www.theeagle.com/news/local/chevron-donates-m-for-programs-to-help-attract-engineers-to/article_9f1edfac-be98-5bcc-8a5d-76b5324b1f6c.html

Louie Gohmert freaks out: Marriage equality ruling means God will stop ‘protecting’ the US

Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert added himself to the Christian conservative chorus complaining on Friday about the Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriages, releasing a statement that invoked not only the Bible, but multiple former presidents.

“Founders and leaders including George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, John Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and most all of the Presidents have noted that it is God who has been the source of this nation’s unfathomable blessings,” Gohmert stated. “But if Moses, Jesus, and contributors to the Bible were correct, God’s hand of protection will be withdrawn as future actions from external and internal forces will soon make clear. I will do all I can to prevent such harm, but I am gravely fearful that the stage has now been set.”

Gohmert, who invited anti-LGBT pastor and Fox News contributor Robert Jeffress to deliver a prayer in the House of Representatives late last year, and also encouraged black communities to discriminate against the LGBT communities, also recycled the conservative argument that Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan should have recused themselves from the case because they had presided over same-sex weddings in the past.

“When Justices of the highest court in the country believe they do not have to comply with essential laws governing courts themselves, then there is no overriding legitimate law of the land, which action standing alone is enough to substantiate tyranny,” Gohmert argued.

Read more: http://www.rawstory.com/2015/06/louie-gohmert-freaks-out-marriage-equality-ruling-means-god-will-stop-protecting-the-us/

State registrar makes marriage license application gender-neutral

As some people got married Friday, following the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage, they had to alter their marriage license applications by hand.

Later in the day, the State Registrar made it easier.

The department announced Friday evening it had revised the application for a marriage license and the declaration and registration of informal marriage, effective immediately.

The application are now gender neutral and simply list “applicant one” and “applicant two”.

Read more and see the forms: http://thescoopblog.dallasnews.com/2015/06/state-registrar-makes-marriage-license-application-gender-neutral.html/

Disappointed local gay marriage opponents unite in prayer

Prayerful visitors to Southcrest Baptist Church claim country losing moral values

LUBBOCK -- Prayer — and lots of it — will lead toward a successful appeal against same-sex marriage, Lubbock’s state senator said Friday night.

A disappointed Charles Perry encouraged a group of his fellow Christians not to give up during a legal battle ahead.

“All is not lost,” he said. “God is in control, and he is sovereign, and it will work out the way he intended ... Stay prayed up.”

The senator advised against looking down on lesbians and gays. They deserve guidance rather than judgement, he suggested, as do churches on the “pro” side of the debate.

Read more: http://lubbockonline.com/filed-online/2015-06-26/disappointed-local-gay-marriage-opponents-unite-prayer#comment-373851

Twenty counties in Texas say yes to issuing marriage licenses now; 234 counties to go

Source: http://www.caller.com/news/local-news/nueces-county-officials-react-to-gay-marriage-ruling

El Paso

Jefferson County said that they will start issuing licenses on Monday.

SCOTUS Rulings, Dominoes Fall, Conservative Poison Commences

By Carol Morgan

I fully expected this. After SCOTUS’ ruling on the legality of the ACA exchanges and this morning’s ruling on same-sex marriage, the Conservative claws emerged like a feral cat’s battle over a contested alleyway.

It goes without saying…I’m happy about SCOTUS’ rulings; two back-to-back victories that make life in America a little more equal, but it’s caused me to question the system all morning. It’s odd how answers always lead to more questions.

Why must it require so much time, money, and effort, and a drawn-out battle with America’s bureaucracy and narrow-eyed obstructionists to accomplish something that SHOULD be easy…if you simply consider OTHERS' needs and happiness on par with your own?

The right to get medical attention if you’re sick is basic.

The right to love who you choose is even more basic.

Why must we go to such lengths to obtain what should be an obvious given?

It's like asking for permission to breathe.

Neither of these court cases affect me. I have my own insurance and I’m a straight female, but I’m happy for those affected by these cases. If any group suffers, we all suffer. Maybe that's a simple belief, but it's my belief and I own it...gladly.

The fallout’s been swift and predictable. The toxic rhetoric, from those who think they matter, but really don’t, has been prolific. It’s the same toxicity that has produced Dylann Roof, the Tsarnaev Brothers, Timothy McVeigh, Joseph Kony, Eric Rudolph, and the jihadists who gave us 9/11. The label may change, but it’s the same generic poison.

This morning, Governor Abbott issued an immediate directive (i.e. king’s edict) ordering the heads of state agencies to prioritize religious freedom. This is Abbott-code to open the door to allowing state agencies to refuse to give employee benefits to same-sex couples. His nebulous statement ensures he can claim he never meant that. Isn’t that cute? What will they think of next?

Abbott’s philosophy is simple: If you can’t win, you can punish the winners. It’s more of the familiar hate virus that’s evolved into a chronic illness in Texas; schoolyard games redux.

It seems as if Lubbock has no immunity to the pandemic either. The Lubbock County Republicans announced an emergency prayer meeting at Southcrest Baptist Church on Friday. A political meeting…in a church…does anyone see anything wrong with this? Newsflash: Pray away the gay has proven not to work, kids.

Those who fight against compassionate and inevitable justice are small individuals; they’re hateful and selfish. Love thy neighbor as thyself, kids. This simple premise has been repeated by every religion, every philosophy, every great teacher, prophet and guru since the beginning of time. Perhaps it’s been said in different words, but the sentiment is identical.

It's pretty simple. The selfish and the hateful are the only ones who've made it complicated and conditional.


Carol Morgan is a career/college counselor, a freelance writer, and former Democratic candidate for the Texas House. She is the award-winning author of two books: Of Tapestry, Time and Tears and Liberal in Lubbock. Email Carol at elizabethcmorgan@sbcglobal.net , follow her on Twitter and on Facebook or visit her writer’s blog at www.carolmorgan.org


Permission granted by Ms. Morgan to post this blog in its entirety.

Abbott vows a religious liberty fight, which gay couples’ lawyer warns will cost state

Update at 2:15 p.m.: AUSTIN — A lawyer for the Texas gay-marriage lawsuit plaintiffs said Friday afternoon that Gov. Greg Abbott is asking for lot of additional lawsuits that will be expensive for the state when he encourages resistance to the Supreme Court’s decision.

Hours after the ruling, Abbott sent a memo to the heads of state agencies directing them to “preserve, protect, and defend the religious liberty of every Texan.” That order “applies to any agency decision,” including granting or denying benefits, managing state employees and making decisions on or enforcing contracts, licenses and permits, the memo says.

Abbott said agency heads “should ensure that no one acting on behalf of their agency takes any adverse action against any person, as defined in Chapter 311 of the Texas Government Code, on account of the person’s act or refusal to act that is substantially motivated by sincere religious belief.”

The section of state law says “person” includes a “corporation, organization, government or governmental subdivision or agency, business trust, estate, trust, partnership, association, and any other legal entity.”

Read more: http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/2015/06/update-abbott-vows-a-religious-liberty-fight-which-gay-couples-lawyer-warns-will-cost-state.html/

[font color=330099]This is a long article with numerous updates made throughout the day.[/font]

Where to find gay marriage celebrations in Austin

[font color=330099]Note: Information is based upon reader submissions to the Austin American-Statesman and is not copyrighted material so the four paragraph limitation does not apply.[/font]

Official Events

At the Travis County Clerk’s office, Dana DeBeauvoir said she will begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses at 10:30 a.m. Friday and stay open until 6:30 p.m. Find out more about hours, fees and documents needed. (5501 Airport Blvd.)


After a Texas for Marriage event at Central Presbyterian Church, there will be an after-party on Fourth Street (Bettie Naylor Street) at 7 p.m. Friday, followed by a rally around 7:30 p.m.
The iconic marquee at the Paramount Theatre on Congress Avenue has been changed in honor of the ruling. Photo opportunities will no doubt follow. (713 Congress Ave.)
Another Austin landmark marking the ruling: Austin City Hall, which has raised a rainbow flag. (301 W. 2nd St.)
In other local movie theater news, the Alamo Drafthouse is hosting a free midnight screening of “The Birdcage”
The Long Center says it will light up its columns “in a rainbow configuration” over the weekend. (701 W. Riverside Drive)
Plans are under way for weddings at the Capitol steps on July 4 at 4 p.m., according to a Facebook event. [font color=330099]Note: I love the fact that this is rubbing it in the faces of Abbott, Patrick and Patton.[/font]

Bars and Restaurants

Oilcan Harry’s is planning a “SCOTUS Party of the Century.” They are also offering 46-cent drinks all day and night to mark the 46th anniversary of the Stonewall Inn riots. (211 W. 4th St.)
Rain on 4th is opening its doors at 1 p.m. Friday and offering happy hour prices all day and night. (217 W. 4th St.)
Highland Lounge will also be celebrating Friday night. (404 Colorado St.)
The Iron Bear will be open at 2 p.m. Friday with 50-cent well drinks all day and night. (121 W. 8th St.)
The Butterfly Bar at The Vortex is offering happy hour prices all weekend, as well as free champagne when you show a marriage license dated from Friday through Sunday. Other drink specials include a “Ginsgurg Gimlet” and a “Love is Love” cocktail. (2307 Manor Rd.)
Stonewall Warehouse in San Marcos is holding Pridefest on Sunday. Doors are at noon. Check the Facebook event for a full schedule. (141 E. Hopkins St.)
Sugar Mama’s Bakeshop is offering complimentary rainbow sprinkle cupcakes Friday at their south location, while supplies last. (1905 S. 1st St.)


Central Presbyterian Church is hosting a Texas for Marriage event at 6 p.m. Friday. (200 E. 8th St.)
Metropolitan Community Church of Austin says it “will open its sanctuary doors and begin conducting same-sex marriages as soon as licenses are issued and required waiting periods are met (or waived).” Church clergy and “additional approved officiants” will be on hand to conduct weddings for all couples presenting valid marriage licenses, according to a news release. Officiants will be available for the first 24 hours after licenses are issued and then for extended daytime and evening hours. Call 512-291-8601 (leave a message with contact information). Couples can also email office@mccaustin.com. Include “weddings” in the subject line. (8601 S 1st St.)
Faith Presbyterian Church says they are available for same-sex weddings with “no waiting period” and “no hoops” as soon as couples have marriage licenses. (1314 E. Oltorf St.)
Live Oak Unitarian Universalist Church in Cedar Park is hosting a celebration at 3 p.m. Friday. (3315 El Salido Parkway)
Holy Family American Catholic Church posted on their Facebook that “all of our priests and deacons are able to validly celebrate the Sacrament of Marriage” for same-sex couples. (8613 Lava Hill Road)

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