28 December 2005 @ 01:03 pm
US military refuses to hand over prisoners to officials in Iraq until conditions improve. Plus, eight people died in a shootout inside an Iraqi jail over there. Oh, and we found another "torture jail" too.

Manassas redefines 'family' with their new (somewhat racist) ordinances. (See also.)

(Actually, I think we need a shorter primary season, not a longer one.)

* Ted Rall presents "If Jesus Lived Now."
* Local news: the slow demise of Landmark Mall.
* Sifting for facts on the bird flu pandemic fears.
* Testing Einstein's theories on quantum mechanics.
* Should elephants be kept in zoos?
* Inside America's first Muslim sorority.
* Lloyd Garver has an excellent recap of the "war on Christmas."
* Check out Bush's
reading list.
* A woman describes her first day as a nude model for an art class.

Good read, on Munich: viewing terrorism through the film lens.

BAGnewsNotes on the "pro-war picture of the year."

The UK's top ten most missed TV series.
Tales from a suburban touristasimplelife on December 28th, 2005 06:21 pm (UTC)
Manassas redefines 'family' with their new (somewhat racist) ordinances.

Redefining 'family' is a national passtime these days [or international, really].
Titaniasummer_queen on December 28th, 2005 06:37 pm (UTC)
As I commented in another friend's LJ, it's not uncommon for local governments to toggle with the definitions of who can live in a single family dwelling, so that the other folks in the neighborhood won't be inconvenienced or disturbed. When I was a grad student at the University of Georgia, the Athens-Clarke County government made it so no more than two unrelated individuals could live in a house unless there were dependents or an employmer-employee relationship in place (we frequently joked we should hire friends as live-in maids). It was clearly designed to hit low income students and was a slap in the face particularly to unmarried students.
PMMJ: Scientistcheetahmaster on December 28th, 2005 07:01 pm (UTC)
I understand the need for such legislation in extreme cases. This Manassas one does not, to me, seem like such an extreme case that requires this blanket change.
D.L.Takaaltakaal on December 28th, 2005 08:25 pm (UTC)
Oh, joy. My cousin was going to be living with us next semester. If my jurisdiction starts that nonsense, we'd be in violation then (OMG 3 PEOPLE IN A 2 BEDROOM HOUSE!).

See, this all stems from that sneaky ol' Fair Housing Act. The one where you can't put any restrictions on to whom you sell/rent your property on the basis of [pick something]. So, someone may buy a house, expecting to be able to house his or her extended family (Remember those "family values" the far right keeps whining about? Extended families living in one dwelling were part of that.) under one roof... only to be told they can't do so. Later. After they've made the purchase of said dwelling.

And, yes, I'm certain there are a few families (or people lying through their teeth about being related) that are causing some of the complaints. Betcha the complainers wouldn't take on a frat house, which, under the letter of that code, would TOTALLY vio... er. Getting off point. Nevermind.

Has the ACLU started to go after these municipal codes yet?
That Guynecrocannibal on December 29th, 2005 05:59 am (UTC)
"Now, faced with the loss of rental income and with a $3,500 monthly mortgage to pay, Chavez said, they are going to sell. The family will never buy a house again, she said.
Chavez, who has two nephews in the military who served in Iraq, said she could understand having some kind of rule against overcrowding."

Shame Manassas, shame.