First Ever White House Campout

WH Campout

Girl Scouts Inaugural Guests at First Ever White House Campout

June 24, 2015 gsblog

On June 30, First Lady Michelle Obama will host the first-ever White House Campout as part of the Let’s Move! Outside initiative. The Campout is co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of the Interior and will celebrate the National Park Service Centennial as well as Great Outdoors Month. The Campout will take place in one of the most historic backyards and National Parks in the Nation – the White House South Lawn.

As Honorary National President of Girl Scouts of the USA, the First Lady will welcome fifty fourth-grade Girl Scouts to participate in activities to earn their Camper Badge, and to celebrate the release of the new Girls’ Choice Outdoor badges. The Girl Scouts will engage in both new and traditional outdoor activities, including rock wall climbing, knot tying, orienteering, and tent pitching. Later that evening, the participants will be joined by NASA astronaut Cady Coleman, who will join a stargazing activity led by NASA staff and scientists on the South Lawn before the girls settle in for the night.

Let’s Move! Outside was created to encourage kids and families to take advantage of America’s great outdoors—which abound in every city, town, and community. Through public-private partnerships and in conjunction with all levels of government, the Department of Interior leads  Let’s Move! Outside to inspire millions of young people to play, learn, serve and work outdoors.

As part of the centennial celebration of the National Park Service, in which the First Lady serves as honorary co-chair, President Obama launched the “Every Kid in a Park” initiative. This new initiative calls on each of our agencies to help get all children to visit and enjoy the outdoors and inspire a new generation of Americans to experience their country’s unrivaled public lands and waters. Starting in September, every fourth-grader in the nation will receive an “Every Kid in a Park” pass that’s good for free admission to all of America’s federal lands and waters — for them and their families — for a full year.

For more: http://blog.girlscouts.org/2015/06/girl-scouts-inaugural-guests-at-first.html

Let's Move Outside

Regular exercise in nature is proven to improve children’s physical and mental health. Outdoor activity helps kids maintain a healthy weight, boosts their immunity and bone health, and lowers stress. Let’s Move! Outside was created to get kids and families to take advantage of America’s great outdoors – which abound in every city, town, and community. Through public-private partnerships and in conjunction with all levels of government, the Department of Interior leads  Let’s Move! Outside to inspire millions of young people to play, learn, serve, and work outdoors.

Kids need at least 60 minutes of active and vigorous play each day to stay healthy, and one of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to meet this goal is by playing outside. By linking parents to nearby parks, trails and waters – and providing tips and ideas –  Let’s Move! Outside can help families develop a more active lifestyle.

Pitch a Tent to Protect Wildlife - Pledge Today
Pitch a Tent to Protect Wildlife – Pledge Today

Let’s Move! Outside

Fireworks on Federal land is illegal

BE SMART OUTDOORS

  • Essential wildfire prevention information
  • Learn how to build a SAFE campfire to prevent wildfires

Campfire Safety

See how easily burning debris can start a wildfire

Debris Burning

Understand how proper equipment maintenance can reduce wildfires

Equipment Maintenance

Safety is not only important outdoors, but also in and around our homes

House Safety

Wildfires Burning Today

Learn more: http://www.smokeybear.com/wildfires.as

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015
4:30 PM ET
First Lady Michelle Obama hosts the first-ever
White House Campout
White House South Lawn

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Great American Backyard Campout – Flickr

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Stonewall Riots – 46th Anniversary

Police raids on gay bars and nightclubs were a regular event in cities across the United States. Commonly the police would record the identities of all those present, which would be subsequently published in the newspaper, then load up their police van with as many as it would hold. Kissing, holding hands, or even being in a gay bar at all was used as grounds for arrest on indecency charges at that time. The Stonewall raid on June 29, 1969 started out just like any other raid. Seven plainclothes policemen entered the bar along with one uniformed policeman, allegedly to investigate improprieties in the liquor license. They cleared the bar, whose clientele remained on the sidewalk and street outside. The situation took a dramatic turn for the worse, and the police began beating people who resisted with their nightsticks. The crowd started throwing rocks and bottles rather than coins. The police took refuge inside the Inn, which they trashed. This was the first time the homosexual community had resisted with such force. With this event, the gay rights movement was ignited.

“While we have come a long way since the Stonewall riots in 1969, we still have a lot of work to do. Too often, the issue of LGBT rights is exploited by those seeking to divide us. But at its core, this issue is about who we are as Americans. It’s about whether this nation is going to live up to its founding promise of equality by treating all its citizens with dignity and respect.”

6/1/07  Senator Barack Obama  

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US Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Same-Sex Marriage

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❤️ US Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Same-Sex Marriage !!! ❤️

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 By the way, when you see one of these hrc-logo

 That means that WE stand for equality

 … straight & LGBT people believing that ALL PEOPLE are EQUAL

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Six Major Rulings from the Supreme Court

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Here Are the Six Major Rulings We’ll Get From the Supreme Court This Week

Jun 24, 2015 12:14 PM PDT Greg Shohr – bloomberg

The U.S. Supreme Court is saving the best for last.

The nation’s top court will issue a series of major rulings over the next several days as it closes its nine-month term. In addition to landmark gay-marriage and Obamacare cases, the court will decide on potentially far-reaching disputes involving housing discrimination, redistricting, air pollution and lethal injection.

“Almost all of the remaining rulings have huge implications and promise to be closely divided,” said Tom Goldstein, a Washington appellate lawyer whose Scotusblog website tracks the court.

The first of seven rulings will come at 10 a.m. Washington time Thursday, with more scheduled for Friday and Monday. The court doesn’t say in advance which decisions are being released which day, but it almost always resolves all its pending cases by the end of June.

Before they pack up, the justices will also say whether they will supplement the session that starts in October with new cases on abortion, affirmative action and union fees.

Here’s what’s coming from the Supreme Court over the next week:

  • Gay Marriage

No case is bigger than the one that could legalize same-sex weddings nationwide. Only 11 years after Massachusetts became the first gay-marriage state, the court would be putting the capstone on the biggest civil rights transformation in a half-century.

 The cases are: Obergefell v. Hodges (Ohio), Tanco v. Haslam (Tennessee), DeBoer v. Snyder (Michigan), and Bourke v. Beshear (Kentucky).

  • Health Care

Three years after upholding President Barack Obama’s signature health-care [Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act] law against a broad constitutional challenge, the court will decide whether a four-word phrase will severely undercut the measure.

The case: King v. Burwell

  • Housing Discrimination

The biggest race case of the term may produce a long-sought legal victory for lenders and insurers, as well as social conservatives. The court is poised to say whether people suing under the U.S. Fair Housing Act can win their case without showing intentional discrimination.

The case:  Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project

  • Lethal Injection

The April 29 argument over lethal injection methods might have been the most heated of the term, with one justice accusing death penalty opponents of waging a “guerrilla war” and another saying she couldn’t trust a state lawyer.

The case: Glossip v. Gross

Supreme Court says Okla. lethal injection doesn’t violate Constitution

  • Clean Air

The utility industry and a group of states are trying to topple an Environmental Protection Agency rule that would cut mercury and other hazardous emissions from 460 coal-fired power plants.

The case: Michigan v. Environmental Protection

  • Redistricing

The court may deal a fresh blow to efforts to make federal elections more competitive by barring states from setting up independent commissions to draw congressional district boundaries. The issue is whether an Arizona commission strips state lawmakers of power reserved to them by the U.S. Constitution.

The case: Arizona State Legislature v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission

For more: http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2015-06-24/marriage-obamacare-highlight-decision-week-at-u-s-high

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The Disintegration of DOMA – 3rd Anniversary

LGBT flag_lrg PBO Strive for Complete Equality for LGBT
Obama administration urges U.S. Supreme Court to strike down DOMA
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February 22, 2013 lgbtqnation Staff Reports
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The Obama administration on Friday filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing why it considers the federal Defense of Marriage Act to be unconstitutional.
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Filed in United States v. Windsor, a case challenging Section 3 of DOMA, the administration said “gay and lesbian people have been subject to a significant history of discrimination in this country,” and argued that laws targeting individuals based on their sexual orientation should face additional scrutiny by courts reviewing them.
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In the brief, Solicitor General Donald Verrilli asked the court to uphold a federal appeals court ruling that found DOMA to be unconstitutional: Section 3 of DOMA violates the fundamental constitutional guarantee of equal protection. The law denies to tens of thousands of same-sex couples who are legally married under state law an array of important federal benefits that are available to legally married opposite-sex couples. Because this discrimination cannot be justified as substantially furthering any important governmental interest, Section 3 is unconstitutional.
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This case deals with Edith Windsor, who was forced to pay $363,000 in estate taxes in 2009 upon the death of her spouse, Thea Spyer. The two had lived as a couple for 44 years and married in Canada in 2007. Because her decades-long partner was a woman, the federal government did not recognize the same-sex marriage in legal terms, even though their home state of New York did.
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Section 3 of DOMA, which bars legally married same-sex couples from any federal benefits or programs based on marriage, has been found unconstitutional in eight federal courts, including the First and Second Circuit Court of Appeals, on issues including bankruptcy, public employee benefits, estate taxes, and immigration.
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The brief also mentions Proposition 8, California’s ban on same-sex marriage, and similar measures in other states as evidence of continued discrimination against gays and lesbians.
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For more: http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2013/02/obama-administration-urges-u-s-surpeme-court-to-strike-down-doma/ .

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High court strikes down federal marriage provision

6/26/13 By MARK SHERMAN | Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that legally married same-sex couples should get the same federal benefits as heterosexual couples.

The court invalidated a provision of the federal Defense of Marriage Act that has prevented married gay couples from receiving a range of tax, health and retirement benefits that are generally available to married people. The vote was 5-4.

Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the majority opinion.

Same-sex marriage has been adopted by 12 states and the District of Columbia. Another 18,000 couples were married in California during a brief period when same-sex unions were legal there.

The court has yet to release its decision on California’s ban on same-sex marriage.

“Under DOMA, same-sex married couples have their lives burdened, by reason of government decree, in visible and public ways,” Kennedy said.

“DOMA’s principal effect is to identify a subset of state-sanctioned marriages and make them unequal,” he said.

He was joined by the court’s four liberal justices.

Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas dissented.

For more: http://news.yahoo.com/high-court-strikes-down-federal-marriage-provision-140557846.html

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. “My general view is that transgender persons, just like gays and lesbians, are deserving of equal treatment under the law. And that’s a basic principle,” the president said. “My sense is that the Supreme Court is about to make a shift, one that I welcome, which is to recognize that — having hit a critical mass of states that have recognized same-sex marriage — it doesn’t make sense for us to now have this patchwork system and that it’s time to recognize that, under the equal protection clause of the United States, same-sex couples should have the same rights as anybody else.”

2/17/15 President Obama interview with BuzzFeed

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Title IX – 43rd Anniversary

Title_IX

Title IX

Title IX is a portion of the Education Amendments of 1972, Public Law No. 92-318, 86 Stat. 235 (June 23, 1972), codified at 20 U.S.C. sections 1681 through 1688, U.S. legislation also identified by the name of its principal author as the Patsy T. Mink (Hawaiian Congresswoman) Equal Opportunity in Education Act . It states (in part) that

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity.

For more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Title_IX

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Know Your Rights: Title IX Prohibits Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence Where You Go to School

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), 20 U.S.C. §1681 et seq., is a Federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs and activities. All public and private elementary and secondary schools, school districts, colleges, and universities (hereinafter “schools”) receiving any Federal funds must comply with Title IX. Under Title IX, discrimination on the basis of sex can include sexual harassment or sexual violence, such as rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, and sexual coercion.

Below is additional information regarding the specific requirements of Title IX as they pertain to sexual harassment and sexual violence.

What are a school’s responsibilities to address sexual harassment and sexual violence?

  • A school has a responsibility to respond promptly and effectively. If a school knows or reasonably should know about sexual harassment or sexual violence that creates a hostile environment, the school must take immediate action to eliminate the sexual harassment or sexual violence, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects.
  • Even if a student or his or her parent does not want to file a complaint or does not request that the school take any action on the student’s behalf, if a school knows or reasonably should know about possible sexual harassment or sexual violence, it must promptly investigate to determine what occurred and then take appropriate steps to resolve the situation.
  • A criminal investigation into allegations of sexual harassment or sexual violence does not relive the school of its duty under Title IX to resolve complaints promptly and equitably.What procedures must a school have in place to prevent sexual harassment and sexual violence and resolve complaints?

• Every School Must Have And Distribute A Policy Against Sex Discrimination

• Every School Must Have A Title IX Coordinator

• Every School Must Have And Make Known Procedures For Students To File Complaints Of Sex Discrimination.

For more: https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/fact_sheet_know_your_rights.pdf

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Mr. President, the last thing I want to say is, I want to thank you personally, you and the First Lady, for all you do to empower women. You have no idea.  Every day, you both send a strong message that little girls can do anything they want to do, and they can be anything they want to be.

6/14/13 Indiana Fever Coach Lin Dunn

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Move The Confederate Rebel Flag To Museums

We The People Petition

WE THE PEOPLE Petition: Remove the Conferderate Rebel Flag from State House Grounds

Force the state of South Carolina to remove the Confederate Rebel Flag from the State House grounds.

With the recent events in Charleston, South Carolina at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church, the symbol in which this act of terrorism was committed was through the representation of the Confederate Rebel flag. We ask President Barack Obama to have the flag removed from the South Carolina State House grounds and from all governmental buildings. It epitomizes hate and destruction of a much darker time.

SIGN THE PETITION: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/force-state-south-carolina-remove-confederate-rebel-flag-state-house-grounds

June 22, 2000 Ku Klux Klan member holding Confederate Rebel Flag
June 22, 2000 Ku Klux Klan members holding Confederate Rebel Flag

Obama thinks Confederate flag ‘belongs in a museum

6/19/15 By Jordan Fabian – TheHill

President Obama believes the Confederate flag “belongs in a museum,” the White House said Friday amid calls for it to be taken down, following a mass shooting in South Carolina.

“The president has said before he believes the Confederate flag belongs in a museum, and that is still his position,” spokesman Eric Schultz told reporters aboard Air Force One.

A mass shooting at a historic African-American church in Charleston, S.C., has renewed the debate over whether the Confederate battle flag should continue to fly in the state.

The suspected shooter, Dylann Storm Roof, reportedly drove a car with Confederate flag license plates.

And while the U.S. and South Carolina flags were lowered to half-staff following the shooting, the Confederate flag that flies near the state capitol flew at full height, a move that drew criticism.

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s office said Thursday she could not lower the flag without approval from the state legislature. The GOP governor has dismissed calls to remove it in the past.

Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), the Palmetto State’s former governor, said talking about removing the flag is like “opening Pandora’s Box.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R), a 2016 presidential candidate, called the Confederate banner “part of who we are” as South Carolinians.

NAACP President Cornell Brooks said Friday the flag must come down. He criticized those who say it’s simply a symbol of the state’s history, calling it an “emblem of hate.”

“When we see that symbol lifted up as an emblem of hate, as a tool of hate, as an inspiration for hate, as an inspiration for violence, that symbol has to come down,” he said Friday in Charleston.

Obama first called for the Confederate flag to be retired to a museum in 2007 during his campaign for president, months before their South Carolina primary.

Lennos Lemon, 12, sits on the South Carolina Statehouse steps during a rally to take down the Confederate flag, Saturday, June 20, 2015, in Columbia, S.C. Rep. Doug Brannon, R-Landrum, said it's past time for the Confederate flag to be removed from South Carolina's Statehouse grounds after nine people were killed at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church shooting. (AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt)
Lennos Lemon, 12, sits on the South Carolina Statehouse steps during a rally to take down the Confederate flag, Saturday, June 20, 2015, in Columbia, S.C. Rep. Doug Brannon, R-Landrum, said it’s past time for the Confederate flag to be removed from South Carolina’s Statehouse grounds after nine people were killed at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church shooting. (AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt)


UPDATES:

June 22, 2015 
Governor Nikki Haley (R-SC) calls for the Confederate flag to be taken down from the grounds of the State Capitol
WalMart and Sears pull the confederate flag from their stock

June 23, 2015
Virginia governor orders Confederate flag removed from license plates
Amazon pulls the confederate flag from their stock
Major U.S. flag (Valley Forge Flag) maker to stop making Confederate flags
* EBay to ban Confederate flag listings
* Etsy Bans Confederate Flags

June 24, 2015
* Annin Flagmakers maker to stop making Confederate flags
* Eder Flag Manufacturing maker to stop making Confederate flags
* Dixie Flag Manufacturing Company says they will stop making Confederate flags
* Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley Orders Confederate Flags Taken Down From State Capitol
U.S. Senator Roger Wicker is calling for Mississippi to change its state flag
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