Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell
It's been in effect for 17 years. Openly gay, lesbian or bisexual men and women can't serve in the armed forces. Specifically, they’re barred from showing a tendency toward homosexual acts. The policy also prevents the military from rooting out those hiding their sexual preferences. Still, estimates suggest as many as 13,000 people have been discharged, and thousands more decided not to re-enlist because of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy.
Berry, Berry Bad
A hundred or more people carrying flowers, white crosses, flags and heart-shaped cardboard signs showed up at the Monday, June 7 City Council meeting. They were protesting Albuquerque’s policy of allowing federal officers to check the immigration status of everyone who is arrested.
Trail-a-Week: South Diversion Channel
Don't forget your water bottles, you guys. It's getting hot out there. Betty Sprocket has been sweating so profusely she feels like she was baked in a salt crust after getting home from a ride. Today we're riding the South Diversion Channel trail in a big loop that circumscribes some South Valley neighborhoods and industrial yards, a short portion of Rio Bravo, and the dry, open throat of the South Diversion Channel itself. Get on at the southernmost tip of the Paseo del Bosque trail (near Rio Bravo and the river) and keep going south. Paseo del Bosque becomes the South Diversion Channel. I guess you could ride east on Rio Bravo and do the loop clockwise, but it's better to start out going south. The views are typical South Valley tableaux: junkyards, panels of endearingly bad graffiti, those dirt-bike-trail-covered hills rising up in the east. O, the many faces of Albuquerque. I love them all so much! Finish your ride coasting downhill on Rio Bravo, being sure to check out all the sweet South Valley rims you'll see rollin' by. Does anyone know where to get chrome dubs specially made for the velocipede? I'm ... asking for a friend.
Ortiz y Pino
Missed It by This Much
I just spent a year campaigning for lieutenant governor. Looking at the experience through the lens of some of the many numbers involved gives a peek inside electoral politics. It also offers a glimpse of how much work it will take to recapture democracy in New Mexico. Consider these digits:
Ain't I a Woman?
Whatever Happened to Equal Rights?
A Santa Fe County woman pled guilty to misdemeanor charges of impersonating a police officer on Friday, May 28, in return for probation and community service. Police said in August that she pulled someone over using flashing lights and a bullhorn. She attributes her lapse in judgment to "an unrecognized psychological obsession, brought on by many years of wanting to be a police officer."
Odds & Ends
Dateline: India—Media outlets are reporting that local police are keeping a pigeon under armed guard after it was caught on an alleged “special mission of spying” for neighboring Pakistan. The white bird was found by a resident of India’s Punjab state—which borders Pakistan—and taken to a rural police station near the city of Amritsar. The pigeon had a ring around its foot and a Pakistani phone number and address stamped on its body in red ink. Police officer Ramdas Jagjit Singh Chahal told the Press Trust of India news agency that the bird was suspected of landing on Indian soil with a secret message—although no note was actually found. To be safe, officials in the northern state ordered that the animal be held in an air-conditioned room under 24-hour-a-day police guard and that no one be allowed to visit it. According to PTI, senior officers have asked to be updated on the situation three times a day.
There Was Almost a New Sheriff in Town
Seven Bernalillo County sheriff contenders squeezed into the most crowded race on the Dem primary ballot. One of them was the first openly gay male candidate to run for sheriff in the nation.