Pennsylvania has the most stringent pledge of allegiance laws in the US.
I nearly always just mumbled the pledge, or moved my lips (or later, just stood there doing nothing). But even more disturbing were the folks who said it out loud, real loud, as if they meant it. Maybe they did. Scary.
In any event, mandatory crap like this just breeds cynics. Let’s hear it for cynics.
I’m red-green colorblind. About 8-10% of men (and 0.5% of women) have color-deficient vision. The technical term is Dichromatism. It’s no big deal; usually if someone asks me, “Well, what color is this sweater I’m wearing” it’s really easy to guess. And no, traffic lights are not a problem (even in states where they’re hung horizontally).
Red-green color blindness doesn’t mean that someone has trouble distinguishing those colors, it means that the the color receptors in the eye are less sensitive to those wavelengths. So if you ask me, “Find the purple crayon,” I’m unlikely to be able to tell the blue crayon from the purple one (which is basically blue mixed with red; the blue overwhelms the red, if you like).
I do have a hell of a time with multicolored LEDs. Green, yellow, red, they all look the same to me. And I’ve returned a few video games (something from LucasArts — which was all color-based puzzles — and one of the last critical puzzles in Riven involved placing multicolored dots on a grid and was basically unsolvable by me).
Here’s a good article on color-blindness I googled.
Declan McCullagh’s Politech mailing list (a newsletter / discussion group on politics and technology) recently posted a link to an interview with Jack Valenti and some comments on it.
Politech is definitely worth a read.
“Democracy is government by the people and for the people, on the principle that the people should get the kind of government they deserve, good and hard.”
– Robert Frezza, The VMR Theory
Here are a bunch of ways to bail out from orbit, including MOOSE (my favorite) and the Paracone (very minimal).
Please remember that flying on the shuttle is a hazardous job. Space travel is not safe, nor is it likely to be in the near future.
More later. I’m having Challenger flashbacks.