By Allen David
Less than 24 hours after the United States Supreme Court seemed to tear out the heart of one of the most-basic and most-effective laws ever passed by Congress—the 1965 Voting Rights Act—it still seems that way . . . only much more so . . . like, exactly. The justices ruled, 5-4, that the Voting Rights Act has led to unfair and outdated standards for Southern states, which are far more integrated now than when the Act was passed—interesting what 50 years’ worth of everybody having the right to vote can accomplish. Shee-yit, it almost worn’t the South, anymore. But it is today, and it took less than 24 hours for the first group of Southern officials to burst, pack o’coonhounds-like, through the screen door the Supreme Court unlocked. Just like that, they were just as vicious and hateful as they were a half-century ago. Texas‘ Republican attorney general has already announced he is reinstating voter identification plans that had been halted by Justice Department voting rights lawsuits. Mississippi’s governor has announced that state’s voter identification law will go into effect. North Carolina Republicans, meanwhile, are promising to advance one through their statehouse. But then . . . the Supreme Court justices took the heart they’d just torn out of the Voting Rights Act and transplanted it into two laws—the federal Defense of Marriage Act and California’s Proposition 8—that have made same-sex marriage illegal.
THURSDAY, JUNE 27
Who knows whether dogs think in such terms, but a blue-and-white pit bull terrier mix named Sabrina, who was brought to the San Bernardino Animal Control facility with severe injuries on June 19, could not be blamed for feeling as though she was stabbed in the back. For one thing, she was stabbed in the back . . . and the shoulder. Her severe injuries were stab wounds. Sabrina has been recovering, though, thanks to the care of the staff and wonders of youth—she’s just two years old. But what seems to be shaping up as Sabrina’s happy ending is actually counting down toward Sabrina’s . . . ending—period. She’s on the clock to be euthanized. I know! A network of animal lovers in two states is working to save Sabrina’s life. They have until tomorrow at 4 p.m. Their objective? Twofold. First, to locate an accredited rescue group, one with the authority to claim dogs and withdraw them from the San Bernardino City Shelter. Then, to find a foster family. Although Sabrina’s recovery from the stab wounds is inspirational, it also creates circumstances that make it harder to save her life. Many dogs who have medical issues or who have been victims of abuse or who are of problematic breeds—such as pit bulls—are not permitted to be adopted by members of the general public. Sooo . . . we’ll see.
FRIDAY, JUNE 28
With a simple sentence, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals lifts the stay on gay marriages in California, opening the way for same-sex weddings to resume. “The stay in the above matter is dissolved effective immediately,” the ruling reads. Less than two hours later, shortly before 5 p.m., the first wedding occurs in San Francisco when Attorney General Kamala Harris performs the ceremony for Sandy Stier and Kris Perry, two of the plaintiffs in legal challenge that overturned the state’s same-sex marriage ban. After waiting for years to get married, the couple rush from their East Bay home to San Francisco City Hall after the brief court of appeals order.
SATURDAY, JUNE 29
The countdown to forever-and-ever was closing in on amen for Sabrina the Pit Bull today, and thank goodness we’ve seen so many death row movies that we kinda had a feeling that our heroine was going to get a phone call from the governor. But, no. The call came from a woman in Kansas—name of Paige Musick—who informed officials at San Bernardino Animal Control Shelter that she would adopt Sabrina. “Her time was almost up,” says Kim Stredney, a Phoenix area woman who has been pleading Sabrina’s case and posting photos on Facebook for several days. “Paige couldn’t stand the thought of no one coming to her rescue.” Yeah, a happy ending and all that—except that this is not the end. Sabrina, who is only two years old and has only known life as a California girl, now faces a rest-of-her lifetime in . . . Kansas.
SUNDAY, JUNE 30
Kansas, as in home of Toto.
MONDAY, JULY 1
Today is the 50-year anniversary of the zip code system, which turned the chaos and disorganization of the nation’s post offices into operations characterized by high efficiency and a higher-than-average chance that an employee will go violently bonkers.
TUESDAY, JULY 2
Why “zip” code? Zoning Improvement Plan.