Today on the list: Why asking the troops about don’t ask, don’t tell is a bad idea, the “God hates fags” preacher’s son works against homophobia, and the whistle-blower provision that makes the financial reform bill just a little bit sweeter.

On a regular basis, Truthdig brings you the news items and odds and ends that found their way to Larry Gross, director of the USC Annenberg School for Communication. A specialist in media and culture, art and communication, visual communication and media portrayals of minorities, Gross helped found the field of gay and lesbian studies.

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Fred Phelps’ son gets new job: promoting atheism and battling homophobia Son of ‘God Hates Fags’ preacher likes Lady Gaga and wants more gay bars in Calgary.

MAJOR WHISTLE-BLOWING PROVISION IN FINANCIAL ACT A little-known provision in the huge package extends to the private sector a concept long applied to government contracts.

WHY POLLING TROOPS IS NOT A GOOD ROUTE TO DECENCY Decades before the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell survey, the military asked troops how they felt about two other groups of people: African-Americans and Jews.

Political ad of the year

POLL: WAR ON DRUGS A FAILURE, LEGALIZE POT Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe their country has a serious drug abuse problem, but 65 percent think the federal government’s “War on Drugs” has been a failure, according to a new national Angus Reid poll.

CNN anchors attack the scourge of anonymity

CNN’s Kyra Phillips and John Roberts spent a good five minutes [Friday] expressing serious concern over what they called “the dark side” of the Internet: the plague of “anonymous bloggers” who are “a bunch of cowards” for not putting their names on what they say, and who use this anonymity to spread “conspiracy,” “lunacy,” “extremism” and false accusations. …

Getting the Best From Cultural Diplomacy Recent years have seen a welcome resurgence in U.S. Cultural Diplomacy, which after honorable service in the Cold War, sailed into the doldrums in the mid-1990s.

WikiLeaks and the War Among the ninety-one thousand or so documents from the Afghan war released by WikiLeaks Sunday is an incident report dated November 22, 2009, submitted by a unit called Task Force Pegasus.

Wikileaks, the World’s First Stateless News Organization

All the Strangeness of Our American World in One Article Have you ever thought about just how strange this country’s version of normal truly is? Let me make my point with a single, hardly noticed Washington Post news story that’s been on my mind for a while. It represents the sort of reporting that, in our world, zips by with next to no reaction, despite the true weirdness buried in it.

Seating Dispute Leads to Stabbing at Comic-Con As Robot 6 reported earlier this evening, violence broke out at Comic-Con International [Saturday] with a dispute over seating near the end of the “Resident Evil: Afterlife” panel in Hall H ending in a stabbing.

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