Tag Archives: Ohio Supreme Court

In California, anything is possible…maybe even “Fat History Month.”

Sometimes, laws don’t make sense. They’re the result of an agenda forced on the majority by a loud and influential minority. The law doesn’t reflect good public policy, just a successful lobbying effort.

California‘s recent dictate to schools to teach the benefits of gays and lesbians to history is one such law. If people thought the Utah legislature’s micromanagement of civics lessons was a little myopic and, well, unnecessary, then this is even more so.

The state has become the first in the nation to require textbooks and history classes to cover the contributions of gay, lesbian and transgendered Americans.

A good friend of mine, known to the world by her nom de plume Salt H2O, put it sarcastically well:

As a former four eyes who was bullied for her glasses I would like to push for ‘eyesight impaired’ history. I don’t want a whole month. I’d just like it to be pointed out in text books the great people of this nation who wore corrective lenses.

Another group that should be up in arms over SB 48 are the obese. Fat kids get teased at an earlier age than homosexuals, and there are exponentially more fat people than homosexuals in our country.  We need Fat History Month to appreciate the metabolically challenged that contributed to this great country so that our fat children will not get bullied because they have a hankering for a Twinkie.

via My Soapbox: Fat History Month.

Maybe she has a point. Certainly President William Howard Taft might get a page or two in the fat metabolically challenged history book. Weighing in at well over 300 pounds when he left office, there is no doubt that he would qualify to “fit” the requirements.

But wait, you say. He’s already well reported in history. He served as President of the United States, an Ohio Supreme Court justice, a US Circuit Court judge, as Governor of the Philippines, and Secretary of War under Theodore Roosevelt, not to mention Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court and the only former President to administer the oath of office to another President. He was a very accomplished man.

And he was, at 5’11” and 290 pounds when he took office, very much in the obese category.

Why must history be revised and taught according to the gender, sexuality, race, or, for that matter, weight categorization? Why not just teach the history that matters, the history that affects us, and leave it at that? Leave out the classifications that label people, and let them be what they are: humans being humans, for better or for worse.

It should not matter if that human was white, black, gay or straight, skinny or fat, male or female. If that person has affected history, teach it.

And, in the meantime, spend more time in schools focusing on the skills that actually matter and that are being forgetting in the culture wars and agendas pushed by minority groups. I’m talking math, reading, writing, and science. It won’t really matter what people think about sexual orientation if they get to college and can’t write, or read, a complete sentence…if they can get in, at all.

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When English Fails to Describe…a Photocopy Machine

Can you identify this machine?

Too much fun is to be had in depositions. The below transcript was reported in the Cleveland Plain Dealer (via Lowering the Bar, via the WSJ Law Blog).

The dispute, before the Ohio Supreme Court, is over the costs for photocopying in the Cuyahoga County Clerk’s office. Currently, they are $28 for the first two pages and $8 for every page thereafter.

Yeah. And you thought paper was expensive at Kinkos.

Enter the lawyers for the deposition:

Plaintiffs’ Lawyer: During your tenure in the computer department at the Recorder’s office, has the Recorder’s office had photocopying machines?

Deponent’s Lawyer: Objection.

PL: Any photocopying machine?

Deponent: When you say “photocopying machine,” what do you mean?

PL: Let me be — let me make sure I understand your question. You don’t have an understanding of what a photocopying machine is?

D: No. I want to make sure that I answer your question correctly….When you say “photocopying machine,” what do you mean?

PL: Let me be clear. The term “photocopying machine” is so ambiguous that you can’t picture in your mind what a photocopying machine is in an office setting?

D: I just want to make sure I answer your question correctly.

PL: Well, we’ll find out. If you can say yes or no, I can do follow-ups, but it seems — if you really don’t know in an office setting what a photocopying machine is, I’d like the Ohio Supreme Court to hear you say so.

D: I just want to make sure I answer your question correctly.

DL: There’s different types of photocopiers, Dave.

Yeah.

And it gets better.

D: I’m sorry. I didn’t know what that meant. I understand that there are photocopying machines, and there are different types of them just like –

PL: Are there any in the Recorder’s office?

D: — there are different cars. Some of them run under gas power, some of them under electric power, and I’m asking if you could help me out by explaining what you mean by “photocopying machines” –-

PL: That’s a great point.

D: — instead of trying to make me feel stupid.

PL: If you feel stupid, it’s not because I’m making you feel that way.

DL: Objection.

But wait! There’s more!

PL: Have you ever–do you have machines there where I can put in a paper document, push a button or two, and out will come copies of that paper document also on paper? Do you have such a machine?

D: Yes, sir.

PL: What do you call that machine?

Patterson: Xerox.

PL: Xerox. Is the machine made by the Xerox Company? Is that why it’s called Xerox?

D: No.

PL: So Xerox, in the parlance that you’ve described, the language that you’ve described, is being used generically as opposed to describing a particular brand; is that right?

D: All of my life I’ve just known people to say Xerox. It’s not commonplace to use the terminology that you’re using.

PL: You mean it’s more — people say Xerox instead of photocopy?

D: If you’re referring to a type of machine where you place a piece of paper on the top and press a button and out comes copies of it, they usually refer to it as a Xerox.

PL: Have you ever heard it referred to as photocopying?

D: Not with my generation, no.

Stupid is as stupid does. No wonder it costs $28 for the first two copies. No one in the office knows what a photocopy machine is.

Check it out. It goes on for 10 pages. At the end of it, I can’t tell whether anyone is more enlightened for the discussion.

(h/t to Lowering the Bar)