Friday, April 30, 2010

The rights of a person vs. the rights of a belief

Yet another response to my postings on nuclear and non-carbon forms of energy. This one is from my niece and, alas, it got tossed in the spam folder where it remained hidden for a few days.

She sent me a link to an article of a wind turbine that sidesteps the NIMBY issue. It is a horizontal cylindrical turbine that is installed along the ridge of a roof. I like innovative solutions like this. Alas, the disadvantages are that it won't be all that high and can't turn into the wind.

The NPR program The Story did an episode today about wind. It featured Pete Ferrell, who put a wind farm on his Kansas ranch, and Mike Cianchette, who worked for a wind company in Maine.

A judge in Britain ruled on a gay discrimination case in a manner that I hope gets attention around here. A sexual therapist refused to take gay couples as patients because it went against his religious beliefs. A couple sued under Britain's anti-discrimination laws. Once you get through the legal language the judge said fine, you are entitled to your religious beliefs, but secular law can't be based on them because religious beliefs are so varied. That means discrimination of a person is more important than discrimination of beliefs. The right of a gay person to be treated fairly in all manner of public accommodation trumps the religious belief of the person providing the public service.

Back in January the Hawaii state House refused to consider a civil union bill already passed by the Senate and did it in such a way to make the whole chamber look like a bunch of wimps.

They redeemed themselves today by considering the bill on the last day of the legislative session -- and passing it! The governor likely won't approve it, so the question is whether she will veto it or allow it to become law without her signature. If vetoed, it passed by wide enough margins in both chambers to override a veto.

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