SIMMONS: Some things to think about before a shutdown cometh

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Should Congress make English the official language of the U.S.?

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ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Shutdown. Debt ceiling. Filibuster, not technically. Timely Social Security payments or not. Funding for Obamacare, yea and nay.

When you live and work in the nation’s capital, you’re often on automatic pilot when it comes to reading and learning about what’s going on inside the Beltway.

Elsewhere in America, real life carries on despite our D.C.-centric views.

Hence, an in-case-you-missed-it column.

Efforts by Michael Page of Florida, Wendy Curry of Maine and Gigi Raven Wilbur of Texas to get substantial recognition for their creation of Bisexual Visibility Day came this week by way of the White House, where a closed-door confab was held. Mr. Page even designed a tricolor, horizontal-stripe flag to serve as a symbol for their movement. Deep pink stands for same-sex attraction, lavender for the entire gender spectrum and royal blue for attraction to the opposite sex. It’s the 14th anniversary of both Bi Sex day and the flag.

Awareness is important.

Pass this one on: Kermit the Frog wasn’t always, well, a frog, and soon the Smithsonian will be displaying Kermie’s early lizardlike self along with his pink sweetie, the sassy Miss Piggy. The Smithsonian announced this week that the Henson family is donating more than 20 puppets and props that will become part of the Jim Henson collection at the National Museum of American History.

The exhibit of the diva of pigdom is expected to open next year, the 60th anniversary of the start of the career of the late Henson, whose puppets debuted on local WRC-TV (Channel 4) in “Sam and Friends” in 1954 while he was a student at the University of Maryland.

That Kermit and Miss Piggy will be, ahem, living together is a real treat.

Oh, Elmo and other uber-popular members of the Muppet gang are coming to the Smithsonian, too.

Do we need federal legislation to protect people and organizations that do not support or recognize gay marriage? Sixty-two members of Congress apparently think so.

They support the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act, intended to protect individuals and organizations that hold views which are not aligned with gay marriage.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Focus on the Family and Concerned Women for America support the bill.

• Where do you fit in? Fifteen percent of Americans over the age of 18 use neither the Internet nor email, according to a survey by the Pew Internet and American Life Project.

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About the Author
Deborah Simmons

Deborah Simmons

Award-winning opinion writer Deborah Simmons is a senior correspondent who reports on City Hall and writes about education, culture, sports and family-related topics. Mrs. Simmons has worked at several newspapers, and since joining The Washington Times in 1985, has served as editorial-page editor and features editor and on the metro desk. She has taught copy editing at the University of ...

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