Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Pray for Peshawar



It was one of those stories I almost missed.  There's never any good news that comes out of the Mid-East or any countries that end in "-stan."  Explosions, attacks, protests, car bombs, beheadings, throwing acid on girls...let's just say I've gotten pretty numb to the "shocking news" that comes from afar.  I wasn't even shocked that over 100 children were killed in a school and at least one teacher was set on fire.

Didn't shock me.

Not a bit.

Wasn't surprised.

For four decades I've listed to the endless barbarism that has streamed across my TV and news feeds.  It's hardly new.  What is "new," or relatively new to my own front row seat to barbarism, is the almost instant and world-wide feedback Twitter provides.  "#PrayforPeshawar" trended for many hours on Twitter last night.  As did #PrayforPakistan and #Taliban.  I scrolled through the tweets and read the comments.  The opening tweet was perhaps the most succinct and yet the deepest.

Pakistan, Peshawar, and the 141 children who were killed at their school by the Taliban received the world's prayers, condolences, good will, and thoughts.  These kind words of support, expressions of outrage, and hope for better future came from Christians and Muslims and no doubt some atheists.  They came from blacks and whites, males and females, and young and old.  Although many tweeted, many had no words other than shock and disgust to offer.

I've read plenty of articles about school shootings.  Too many.  There was something different about Peshawar.  I couldn't place my finger on it at first.  It eventually came to me.  There was something missing in the comments--something I have become oh-so-accustomed to seeing.  It simply wasn't there.

What was missing was dissent.

As ugly and unthinkable as it is to consider children losing their lives to any sort of violence, there is something far more ugly and unthinkable--excusing the violence.

The attack on the military school that had killed 141 children aged 9-16 came but two days after the second anniversary of Sandy Hook.  There are eerie similarities.  As in Sandy Hook, parents said good-bye to the children, unknowingly, for the last time and sent them off to school.  Those parents' dreams were killed too.  The death toll for Peshawar is far greater than Sandy Hook's, but the greater tragedy is Sandy Hook.

We've sort have come to expect barbarism from the Mid-East, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, but Connecticut?  We weren't ready for that.  It isn't that Sandy Hook holds a special monopoly on school shootings that makes their massacre more tragic; it is what came afterwards.  While the world stands shoulder to shoulder with Peshawar, in America things are much different.

Peshawar won't have the likes of Alex Jones to scream "false flag!"  They'll be no Peshawar deniers.  They'll be no lunatics claiming the entire event was staged or that the children of Peshawar were slaughtered on behalf of some government conspiracy.  The citizens of Pakistan won't dismiss the deaths of these children, holding to the belief that the children's' deaths doesn't trump their rights to have a gun.  They'll be no quotes from 18th century figures found anywhere suggesting government will turn on its people and events like Peshawar should simply be absorbed, in anticipation of some conflict or revolution.  No one will insist that the slaughter of 141 children is "the price" Pakistan "pays for freedom."  No one will dismiss the death of these children by reasoning that it is better to "live in an unsafe freedom than a secure tyranny."  No one will tell the parents of Pakistan to "get over it" and "go to hell."

This is the ugly and unthinkable tragedy to American shootings and it is patently American.

We do this!

Ohhhh yes we do!

We hold our guns close and excuse and rationalize away the death of children.  Second Amendment, Founding Fathers, government round ups, forks kill diabetics, drunks kill with cars; we've found any number of ways to absolve ourselves of any guilt or responsibility when children die from gun violence.  It selfishness and basic want and it is the hallmark of this country.

We have a whole demographic of people who don't live in a country as destitute, barren, desperate, violent, or tyrannical as Pakistan, but they have lied enough to themselves to convince themselves that they do.  The deaths of children by guns triggers fears of "gun grabs" and so any lie, excuse, or rationalization is used to save their gun.  Their toy.  Their toy is more important than the death of children.

Pray for Peshawar?

No.

Peshawar is just fine.  They seem to get it.  They seem to understand and comprehend what a tragedy this is.  For a "third world country" they seem to have their priorities in order.  Or maybe it is just better manners.  Maybe they're just more mature and realize a gun is a gun and not a portion of their soul.  Maybe their identity isn't so wrapped in their toy they don't need to deny shootings like this.  Maybe they're human enough to mourn the loss of life before fearing for their gun.

Pray for us.  Pray for the U.S.

...that is if you're religious.

It seems our reactions to school shootings need to catch up with that of the "third world."

Our immature, petulance, and selfishness is glaring.




Sunday, December 14, 2014

It's Not About Race, It's About Equality

Eric Garner is dead over cigarettes--loose cigarettes, or "loosies."

He was selling loose cigarettes and in turn the State of New York wasn't getting its cut in taxes.

I'm not aware of how much Garner's "loosie" empire was bringing in annually.  It had to be substantial!  It must have been!!  Perhaps the good citizens of New York have missed out on revenue that would restore or replace a bridge!  Why else would such a struggle and death take place?

Eric Garner wasn't murdered.  His death was accidental.  It was also monumentally preventable.  Maybe it was slow day for police of Garner's home town.  A real slow day.  A day where the entire police station was squeaky clean, all cold cases had been resolved, and all the filing had been finished--that kind of slow day.  What could have been resolved with a warning or ticket, ended in violence and death.

Garner died before Michael Brown and the riots in Ferguson.  He died before 12 year old Tamir Rice was shot and killed.  In each of these cases there are variables and different circumstances that led to the unfortunate outcomes.  However Garner's death may have been largely forgotten by this nation were it not for the deaths of Brown and Rice and the controversy surrounding those deaths.

"Controversy" isn't a very good word to use.  It is too civil.  Too restrained.  What has surrounded these deaths is far more primitive than the word "controversy."  Hate, ugliness, absolutism, and a heavy dose of racism overshadow these deaths.

Tamir Rice is every cop's nightmare--a kid with a gun.  True--it was an "air gun," but a gun none the less.  Sadly we live in a day and age where it isn't unknown for 12 year olds to be wielding weapons.  As a boy growing up in Schenectady; my weekends and summers were spent playing "war" with a band of other kids.  We all had our toy guns as well and the more realistic the gun, the "cooler" it was.  Cap guns, rattling machine guns fresh of the shelf of Kay-Bee Toys, or even broken toy guns that didn't even "click" were stuffed into our waistbands and slung over our shoulders.

We were stopped one day by the police.  We weren't drawn on by the police.  I barely remember the cop, for this happened over 30 years ago, but I remember he was kind.  He was a mixture of concern and amusement as he told us about the danger of playing "war" and inspected the tips of our guns to make sure they had a green or yellow tip. We learned a valuable lesson that day and from that day forward we often "bagged" our collective arsenal.

Tamir Rice didn't have a green or yellow tip to his actual gun--an air pistol.  He didn't have the luxury of living in a more simple time, where the idea of a kid and gun didn't conjure thoughts of school shootings or death.  My little "band of brothers" worst offense was trespassing on the grounds of Union College and spending our days running the length and breadth of Jackson's Garden fighting some imaginary war.  Looking back--just now--I realize how so much has changed.  Twenty "armed" juvenile gun man laying siege to a university's botanical garden; in today's world there would've been a lock down and helicopters!

Tamir's death is truly tragic.

I think most people could relate to that.

But Tamir's story isn't singular.  It hasn't been allowed to be singular.  Nor has Brown's or Garner's.

Many in this country are saying that "race" has been injected into these cases.  They claim that there's an "agenda" to all of this.  People are "playing the race card" once again!  Oddly--or perhaps not so oddly--I find the people to be most offended by the idea of race and racism, to be quite racist themselves.  It really is a laugh riot.  I don't believe any of these cases were motivated by race.  Eric Garner wasn't put into a barred choke hold because he was black.  Michael Brown wasn't shot at 12 times because he was black.  Tamir Rice wasn't killed because he was black.

However as this country comments on these cases, it is abundantly clear that racism is far from over.  We may want to lie to ourselves and tell ourselves that this racism only continues to thrive in the deepest corners of the rural South, but that simply isn't true.  Read enough and you'll see a well decided on narrative of who and what black Americans are in this country. 

Blacks are lazy.  They never work!  Only white conservative Christians work!  Everybody else is on welfare.  Blacks never work, they're lazy, waiting on their government checks and dealing drugs.  All black people deal and do drugs.  All of them.  Month to month and check to check all these "monkeys" do is ruin their neighborhoods.  This is the narrative that comes across and the proponents of this narrative are supremely confident in this.

Why?

Because they have FBI data!  In and amongst their "non-racists" posts they can cite to you the exact percentages of black on black crime, black violent crime, the numbers of blacks in prison, black recidivism...why with highlighter in hand, if it's black, they have data on it!

But they're not racist.  They have data.

These very same people might argue climate change with you, or evolution, or the age of the Earth, but on the topics of black criminals; that they have data on.

With this data comes the supposition.

Y'see guys like Brown and Garner "ought to have known."  Translation:  They should have expected rough treatment.  If blacks make up 54% of all crime and 70% of our prison population, Brown, Garner, and Rice should not have expected any civility, patience, or presumed innocence.  After all...there are stats!  The sins of their fellow blacks ought to have haunted their every step. 

You have to love stat-whores like this.  It's doubtful that any of these clods actually researched the data themselves.  More likely they found the data through some far-right web page or some supremest group.  The stats they put into play aren't designed to educate other potential Tamir Rices, they are put into play simply dismiss and gloss over these deaths.  To these folks, these deaths weren't about race.  They had little to do with police brutality, over reach, or even poor judgement.  Why Civil Rights isn't even discussed.

If we accept the narrative that all blacks are non-working, check collecting, drug-dealing, breeders responsible for most of the crime in this country; shouldn't blacks accept the fact that they should be treated differently?

Just a reminder for those out there:  When you characterized a sub-group of humanity based on preconceived notions, believe them to be inferior, and feel they are subject to a differential treatment; that pretty much is the definition of racism.  Oh...and it doesn't matter if you have stats either.

Criminals--and note that word because the people tossing it around are often they ones usually whining about "liberty"--criminals when confronted by the police, should "do as they are told."  Due Process seems to get chucked out the window with the "liberty crowd."  Had Garner done as he was told, he'd be alive.  He didn't.  Therefore he "got what was coming."  Didn't Garner read the stats?  Perhaps not.  He was a "criminal" after all.

As I said in the beginning, we really don't know the extent of Garner's "criminal loosie empire."  What we're told by many is that he was a "cheat."  He shouldn't have "broke the law."  He should have "done what he was told."  He didn't and he died.  For those that dismiss Garner's death so cavalierly, I have to wonder if all "criminals" deserve an impromptu death penalty.

Y'see...Garner isn't the only "criminal" who has cheated us of tax money.

Yeah...'memba him?  Clive Bundy.  Bundy reportedly still owes hundreds of thousands of dollars--if not a million--to the government in grazing fees.  I don't know if Garner's "loosie empire" compared to that at all.  I am certain that Bundy's "tax issue" has been known about far longer than Garner's.  I'm certain that Bundy was given due process through a court of law.  I'm certain that a judgement was issued against Bundy.

And when it came time for Clive Bundy to "do as he was told," well the results were far different from Garner's.  Yes Garner resisted, but so did Bundy.  Garner didn't have a small militia behind him leveling their own rifles at the police, which I'm positive in the world of law enforcement, is a far more perceived danger than an overweight asthmatic.  Clive Bundy not only lives, but his "crime" hasn't even been addressed yet.  Eric Garner is dead.

That is not justice.

Bundy has been anointed "hero status."  How dare the government harass a business man!  How dare they seek to take taxes from him!!  Bundy supporters were not only prepared to resist, they were prepared to fight and kill.  Garner, on the other hand, is a "criminal."

While racism and broad generalizations have clouded the cases of Garner, Brown, and Rice, the real issue is equality--everyone being treated equally.  You won't hear much about "equality" these days.  It's not a hot topic.  Women's equality in the workplace, marriage equality for gays, or even equality during confrontations with the police are brushed aside.  The very same people that would dismiss the deaths of Garner, Brown, and Rice don't want to talk about equality.  It's really inconvenient for them!

Simply because they don't believe in it.

Oh...they'll piss and moan about liberties, but they aren't talking about your liberties.  They are talking about theirs!  Equality isn't even a word they utter.  They're not interested in equality.  Equality affords them no special station or status.  They'll wail about "religious liberty" to argue who they should be able to hire or fire or what prayer should be recited when and where.  However, suggest a Muslim prayer be read at a town council and you'll soon discover it's their "religious liberty" and their faith they were talking about.  Who ever mentioned equality?

The deaths of Garner, Brown, and Rice should bother us all, but not because of race.  There are so many other things to examine: police brutality, use of force, the safety of police, intervention protocols...the list goes on.  These deaths should bother us because no one should die over selling a $1.00 cigarette or be unarmed and riddled with bullets and it would be really nice if police didn't see 12 year olds as a immediate threat to them.  It is what has come after these deaths, this ugliness that has raised its head, that should also concern us.  It isn't about race, it's about equality.




Monday, December 8, 2014

Why Not a Meme?

A friend of mine shared a post on Facebook the other day.  I needed to call him and ask if he had completely lost his goddamn mind.  My friend is ex-military, married, with children, and really doesn't carry many of the idiotic notions many conservatives put forth these days.  So I had to wonder...

If you are one of the many--far too many--who still believe this idiotic idea that the government was or is  still trying to get your stupid gun; you're a moron.  Truly.  A booger-picking, crayon munching, moron.  There's no two ways about it.

The government is perfectly fine with you having your gun!!  There's an abundance of proof to back that up.  Show me a bill!  Show me a law!  Show me a position where a gun is imperiled.  Someone show me this "plot" which has yet to materialize.

You need proof?


Fine.

We near the second anniversary of the Sandy Hook Massacre.  Twenty children and six staff were gunned down and as a nation we did nothing.  Nothing.  Oh we pissed and moaned about it.  We clutched our guns tightly.  Yet in the grand scheme of things, those weren't our children, so...who cares?  We talked about keeping our children safe but did nothing.  We talked about mental illness but did nothing.  We talked about TV, movies, and video games but did nothing.

Our kids still practice lock down drills.  Gun violence still occurs on campuses, at high schools, and I must say 2014 was a banner year for kids and gun related deaths and accidents.

...and we still continue to do nothing.  Your gun is safe.  Even with the continued slaughter, the "big-bad government" hasn't done a thing.

Still need more proof?

After Sandy Hook the peculiar practice of raffling off AK-47s and AR-15s began.  It was almost as if those who clutched their guns close after hearing the news of Sandy Hook, needed to spit on those kids' graves.  Clutching their guns, these maniacs weren't satisfied that our government shrugged and our nation eventually lost interest.  They were offended at the very idea that some might question the wisdom of these fine weapons being in the hands of just anyone.  With childish spite and with a whole lot of adult assholery, they raffled these weapons off in spite and professed fear that the government would come for the guns.

It was popular!

Numerous GOP candidates have raffled of these weapons.  Oregon, Colorado, and Missouri have all seen AR-15 raffles.  South Carolina and Maryland candidates preferred a more exotic flair and raffled of AK-47s.  Why the GOP has even incorporated holidays for these raffles.  An Oregon County GOP group raffled off an AR-15 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day--because what better way to celebrate a man's life who died by gun violence, than by raffling off a gun!

I'll leave it to you to decide if that's racists, stupid, or just in bad taste.

Father's Day is a popular day to raffle off AR-15s as well.

But it's not just the regular crew of crazy of the GOP raffling off these weapons.

It's almost become main stream.  Churches have been routinely raffling off these weapons and effectively bribing people to get them into the pews.  A local Troy pastor was big on this for a while, because "derp..derp...Jesus killed the first born of Egypt with an AR-15...oogie oogie derp" or some silly shit.

Yet even outside of the umbrella of the GOP, we have had loads of access to these weapons.  Barber shops, girl softball groups, Little League Groups, and even high school baseball teams have raffled off these weapons!  College newspapers have raffled off these weapons!!  The police--y'know...the government--have raffled off these weapons!!

Your gun is truly, truly safe.

Hell you might 'luck out' and find yourself a winner in one of these many raffles!  If there is a plot by the government to take these guns, it's the strangest plot ever!  The only conclusion you can come to, is that the government wants to saturate the market and create disinterest.

Your gun is safe.

...and you're still a booger-picking, crayon munching moron if you believe otherwise.

The above meme is courtesy of the dummies at the National Gun Rights Organization.  Groups like this have to keep up the lie and further the myth of some gun grab.  It drives fund-raising!  As an added bonus, gun-owners feel special, as if they are some sort of self-appointed vanguard of our freedoms, that no one asked for.  For some bizarre reason, these dummies give a lot of credence to the Founding Fathers, more so than say, the children of Sandy Hook.  I would submit that the dummies of NGR are giving their attention and allegiance to the wrong group of dead people.

As I promised you that your gun is safe, let me also promise that England or any other 18th Century European Monarchy are not going to invade us.  We're safe.  We really are. In fact you have a better chance of getting gunned down purposefully or accidentally by a fellow American, than by German Hessian mercenaries.  The war is over Minute Men.  Yes...yes...Chicago, Los Angeles, D.C. all have gun violence--but do you live there?  This is hardly a real fear for many gun-owners but it has become a cornerstone of their talking points.  If we are conjuring real fear, gun-owners and proponents are better off admitting they are afraid of many of their idiot brethren shooting up their school, shopping mall or neighborhood. 

If groups like the National Gun Rights Organization are feeling needy and need to stay relevant, I wonder why they use such stupid marketing and memes.  If they really want to empower truly responsible and law-abiding gun owners of this country, why not cull the herd of the obvious, plentiful, and high profile gun nuts in this country?

Why not a meme that recommends not pointing your loaded Glock 27 at your 11 year old nephew's head while demonstrating the laser sight?  Hunter Pederson of New Jersey might still be alive.  How about a meme that shooting your 16 year old grandson for playing hookie from school isn't ok?  Ulysses Hayes, age 72, thought that was keen idea in March of this year.  Or how about meme of "Just Have Your Shit Together if You Own a Gun"?  That might helped diffuse a situation where an 11 year old boy shot his 84 year old grandfather, after dear ol' gramps, shot his own son in July of this year.

I don't know about you, but I'm less and less worried about an invasion of powdered wigged British Regulars or a government gun grab.  In the interest of full disclosure, I was trying to find an article I had read some months ago, where an adult had given a small child a gun, who turned and shot his grandfather in the rocking chair.  You won't believe how many articles there are on grandfathers shooting kids and kids shooting grandfathers.  I couldn't even find the original story I was looking for--it was drowned out by all the others!!  Seriously--Google it.  "Grandfather accidentally shoots grandson."  "Grandfather kills grandson, girlfriend, and self."  "73 year old man kills grandson."  How about meme:  "Stop Giving the ol' fucks' guns!"

For some insane or more likely selfish reason, gun proponents have ignored these growing incidents.  It's not Chicago gangs or D.C. thugs wounding or killing in these stories, it's gun-owners.  Gun-owners who purchased their guns legally and followed the laws of where they lived to have these weapons.  Whether it is an inability or unwillingness to secure their weapon, murderous rage, careless wielding, or incompetent owners, groups like the National Gun Rights remain either oblivious or uncaring about these incidents.  They are consistent in their silence.  While groups like this have come up with every reason to remind us why we have the Right to Bear Arms, they are notoriously silent on the responsibility of bearing arms. 


I can't decide which is more fun in the above video:  watching this dude shit his pants or listening to his half-assed explanation of World War II. 


It isn't gun violence in major cities or some pending invasion from another foreign power that has fostered anti-gun sentiment.  Hell, it isn't even the government.  It's gun-owners.  Their continued silence to the idiocy, immaturity, and incompetence of their idiot brethren sanctions these behaviors and crimes.  These issues are ignored and conveniently forgotten.  Why--because the myth of a gun grab?

We won't see memes like the ones I mentioned.  Hunter Pederson and Ulysses Hayes will be forgotten for a number of reasons.  Firstly....there's no money in it!  The booger-picking, crayon munching morons won't send money if their guns aren't "in danger."  These memes wouldn't be popular!  Gun groups have done a delightful job masturbating the ego of gun owners.  They're patriots!  Warriors!!  America's first, best, and last line of defense!  They are G.I. Joe!!  ...if the requirement for recruitment to G.I. Joe was a Saturday class at the Elk's Club or YMCA.

It wouldn't do for doubt to creep in.  It wouldn't do for gun-owners to wake up from this fantasy gun grab and look about at their brethren.  The only thing that might be more frightening than a gun grab, would be realizing how many stupid people own guns.  Ask a gun owner, any gun owner about the wisdom of pointing .40 caliber handgun at a child to demonstrate its laser sight.

G'on...

I dare you!

If you aren't hit or shoved into the nearest wall, you'll be treated to the harshest and most terse lecture you've perhaps ever heard.  They know this is not only wrong--it's stupid!! Booger-picking, crayon munching stupid ...and they allow it to happen every day, because...y'know--the government and that gun grab.


My buddy doesn't really believe there is a gun grab.  His wife was just giving him hell about his rifle.  More to the point that he's spending a lot of time hunting. The only thing the poor bastard has captured and brought home in two years was a tick, attached to the head of his penis.  (True story!)  He knows how to handle and more importantly secure his weapon.  Still she's of the belief the rifle will come to life and skulk from room to room at 2 AM killing them all.

He's not booger-picking, crayon-munching stupid.

Like many gun owners, he's tired of being "ragged on."  He's tired of being seen as some sort of threat--some villain.  He just wants to put a bullet in a buck and save some poor motorist a trip to the collision center. Is that so bad?

It isn't.  Not really.

I'd like to believe there is a fix to this, but I wonder if it is too late.  Truly, I do.  The loudest, craziest, most violent and most militant of gun owners have come to become the voice of the pro-gun crowd.  They're not "patriots," they're militia nuts aching for war.  They don't dread the day they might have to use their weapon to protect their home, they eagerly await it--and some have already jumped the gun!  There isn't a desire to hunt, target practice, or collect.  No--there's killing to be done and they're arming up.  This has become the voice and face of the gun crowd.

I wonder if sane gun-owners can ever take back the narrative.  Surely they'll be called "liberal" and "commie."  They may even suffer some of the slander and stalking tactics open-carry supporters have used against members of Moms Demand Action.  What if such a group, not only supported the Right to Bear Arms, but reminded their members of that responsibility? That would be a powerful group. 

This Wednesday, at least 26 families will be reminded of their collective loss.  As we approach a season that is supposed to be about love, family, and so much more; these 26 families will be faking it.  These 26 and hundreds more affected by preventable gun violence and death.

Isn't it time the gun organizations and gun owners stopped faking their gun grab memes?

Thursday, December 4, 2014

The 'Thing' That Never Should Have Been a 'Thing' in the First Place

I want to have some strong powerful feeling about the Darren Wilson verdict, but I just...don't.  I'm sort of numb at this point.  Worry.  Worried is how I feel.

This was a 'thing' that should have never become a 'thing' in the first place.  I can't help feeling Ferguson, Brown, and Wilson received so much attention because we wanted to make it a thing.  I've written before about Ferguson and I pledged to myself to be objective as this case played out.

That wasn't easy.

By not choosing a side, by default, I was placed in the Darren "I-hate-and-kill-black-people" Wilson camp.  Without comment, without some keen insight of my own, I was suddenly a racist.  I hated black people.  I was 'ok' with the murder of teenagers.

None of which is true.

I did believe that Wilson deserved his day in court.  I didn't like the media prosecution and in many cases media persecution of Wilson.  If cases like this are going to be tried in the press, can we do away with the goddamn lawyers at least?  It's odd that in the "information age," we seem to have so much disinformation.

To many, Wilson wasn't entitled to a defense.  The fact that others raised money for him or even supported him was an abomination.  Guilty or innocent, Wilson needed to be financially broke and his life left in tatters for the sake of public opinion and professed outrage.  The real abomination is being able to accuse someone of a crime and letting the side that shouts the loudest decide justice.  

Michael Brown was no angel.  He wasn't a "teenager," not in the physical sense and certainly wasn't some naive youth peddling his Huffy bike to ask his sweetheart to the Homecoming Dance.  Michael Brown was a grown man, who chronologically was 18 years old I sincerely doubt, Brown thought of himself as a "kid" or a "teen."  I wouldn't describe Brown as "sweet" or "innocent" or a "young man with a long productive life ahead of him."  Based on the surveillance cameras of the store that Brown allegedly robbed, what can be seen clearly is a young, but large man, he had no issue with physical confrontation and throwing his size around.



Brown was thug.

"Thug" has been taken to mean "nigger" these days.  It has been used to underscore the supposed inert racism held by White America.  Let me be clear:  Based on that surveillance video, I'd call Brown a "thug," but not a "nigger."  There is a "thug" mentality in this country and it's held by whites, latinos, and blacks.  

It's an ignorant mentality and it's an equal-opportunity offender.  It's a false sense of bravado, an inflated sense of self-worth, that lends to an unjustified swagger.  It isn't pride--not at all!  It's the self-belief that the entire world revolves around one's existence simply because they are so fucking wonderful.  The rules are different for these people.  The "keep it real."  It's "how they roll."  They're going "to do them."  Rules don't apply to them.  They blaze their own trail.  They hold this ignorance close like some malformed sense of honor.

So when they're "wronged" any and all options are on the table for them.  It doesn't matter how far out of line they are.  It doesn't matter which social graces they've chosen to ignore.  It doesn't matter how inconsiderate and obnoxious they are.  Don't we all realize how fucking wonderful they are?

Brown was a thug.

He smoked pot too.  This laughable offense has been held up by some to underscore Brown's "thuggishness."  Most of our kids in the country are smoking pot and I personally "approve."  Hey it's better than drinking!  You're not going to see a fist-fight or large scale brawl break out amongst a bunch of tokers.  Has anyone ever seen stoned people fight?!?  No one's dying of alcohol poisoning or getting their stomach pumped either; tokers are polite enough to pass the hell out and sleep--wonderfully!  

We need to grow up!

Tom Degan, of "The Rant," noted that if Brown's body had been found in an alley way, police most assuredly would've labeled his death "overkill."

That--that is really the issue here.  It really didn't matter that Brown was unarmed.  It didn't matter that Brown was black.  It didn't matter than Brown was 18.  All the rest of this has been window dressing, theater, and race-baiting for us all.

Brown was perceived to be a threat.  Wilson used his gun.  

Was Brown a threat?  Was the use of the gun justified?  Did Wilson feel his life was jeopardized that he needed to fire 12 shots?  Or is Wilson a panicky idiot?  Or was he angry and just "lost it?"  

These are the issues.

Civil rights was the cornerstone of this incident.

It wasn't about Black America or White America.  

How many shots would you have fired?  Would you have fired a warning shot?  If after the first six shots, would you have wondered if Brown was super human?  Would you have considered what a shitty shot you obviously were?  Was Brown on drugs?  Were you counting the shots?

The questions and true nature of this altercation have been lost to the cloud of racism and mob ideology.  If you didn't climb on the anti-Wilson wagon, you were fine with the murder of black children.  If you believed Wilson over reacted, you were a "liberal thug."  The number of shots and even Brown were largely forgotten.

It's becoming easier to look at the police as being more suspect these days.  As I have written previously, the evidence is mounting.  There are numerous stories of excessive force from throughout the country.  And...yes, there are thugs in this country and as I've said before they come in all colors, shapes, and sizes.

Pro-Wilson supporters, who all seem to be racists, couldn't seem to comment on Brown without painting the entire black populace as "thug animals."  They decried the uprising against "law and order."

What a joke.


Many of these very same people and outlets have whispering or voicing anti-government sentiment since Obama took office.  They've been on board with secession, shutting down the government, and even Civil War.   Now we need to listen to the government?
 
If you're white and standing up to the "jack-booted thugs" of the government, you're a "patriot."  If you're doing so while black, well...you're a thug.

Are we clear on this rule?  Because it's the rule many are using.

When Keene State college students rioted over--of all things--a pumpkin festival, they were "letting of steam."  When residents of Ferguson did it, they were "black animal thugs."

 Are really clear on the rules?  I don't think there is any confusion to them.

If you need any portrait of the stupidity and racism that has clouded Ferguson, I give you Chow so cold.  Really--only in America can a smug white bitch express "buyer's remorse."

Of course--what card carrying racist would resist the urge to use Almighty God as a petty hit man!  Only the Christians...

This "wonderful faith" in devotion to a professed needy, murderous, ego-maniac is a delightful thing.

Apparently the Almighty, creator of the infinite universe, has a special place in his heart for America!  He has too.  It couldn't be our own smug arrogance could it?  Never the less, the Lord Almighty God has given into smitings which come with their own public service announcement.

Only the Christians...

Darren Wilson would eventually not be indicted by a grand jury.  If you missed it, if you haven't been caught up in the double standards and racism, you might have noticed that Darren Wilson wasn't exactly whisked off to face the consequences of his actions.  I can only wonder if you or I will be afforded such courtesies should either of us shoot someone six times.  I doubt it.

Wilson's acquittal, from what I've read, was largely based on the inconsistencies of the supposed eye-witnesses.  This created enough doubt for the grand jury to not indict.  The solution now appears to be body cameras worn by police.  

That didn't seem to work for so well for Eric Garner.  Garner was the 46 year old man, who died being apprehended for selling loose cigarettes or "loosies."  

Garner suffered from ashtma, obesity, and high blood pressure.  Combined with the use of a non-sanctioned choke hold, all of these factors contributed to his death.

The entire incident was captured on a cell phone video.  The officers involved were not indicted.  Eric Garner died over loose cigarettes.  Most likely he was selling them for a quarter of fifty-cents each.  At worst, he was a white collar tax dodging crook.

If you're not one of the many wondering and questioning the use of police force, you're probably of the mindset that we should all "shut up," listen to the police and do as you're told.

I'm going to hold people to that.

Because if you're okay with the mounting evidence of police brutality and shootings, you really don't get to complain about parking tickets, speed traps, zoning fines, or even Obamacare.  Just "shut up," listen, and do as your told.

Since Michael Brown's death, 14 other teens have been killed by police--mistakenly and righteously.   There has also been an assortment of crazed armed gun men publicly wielding their weapons who have been taken alive.

The question of our rights--our civil rights--in regards to police force needs to be asked because the evidence is mounting and the problem is clear.  Until we look at the question honestly, without the distractions and the agitators, the problem will only get worse.

Something is clearly amiss when the KKK sides with the law in Ferguson and the "hacktivist" group Anonymous sides with the people.  If that isn't any indication that things are all muddled, I don't know what is.





 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Republican Revolution: Part Duh!


~Blogger Tom Degan of "The Rant."


Wow...that was a schalacking!

That must be what it is like to go to the "wood shed."

The Republicans enjoyed great success and many victories on Election Night.  I feel the need to repeat myself:  I don't get it.  We have record numbers for the DOW, unemployment finally at 6%, payroll companies reported that 235,000 jobs were added last month--mostly at small companies--and America voted for the party that shut down the government over a hissy-fit and cost us $25 billion.

I don't get it.

If there was one race that I was certain that would gain a Democratic seat in the Senate--it was Mitch McConnell's.  Virginia voters had already taken a swipe at Republican Leadership ousting Eric Cantor, so why not Mitch?  Mitch did little to campaign.  He blew up during a radio interview, never met with the editorial boards of his State, and was notoriously 'mum' on his agenda if re-elected.  

All Mitch had to do, was point to the fact that his opponent wore the same colors as Barack Obama.

That's it.

That hate that has been fostered over the years, with half-truths, innuendo, and blatant lies was just hot enough for Kentucky voters to re-elect ol' Mitch.  If it's one thing you hear from the Red Staters, it is their contempt for career politicians, incumbents, and those personally profiting from public service.

Apparently the hate is strong enough in Kentucky where those particular "principles" are ignored and gives McConnell a pass.

Some fun facts:    (Using 2012 numbersThe State of Kentucky has a 19.4% poverty rate, that's increased steadily since 2008's 15.7%.  The "poverty rate" for a married couple with two children is $23,283 (a little more than $11 an hour).  Child poverty is 26.5% compared to 23.5% in 2008.

During this same time period Kentuckians were showing growth in the number of individuals covered by health care.  It was theorized that education and health care jobs (accounting for 24.5% of the State) would see a boom and provide employment opportunity beyond coal mining.

What is Kentucky doing about this?

The State tourism board is providing $18 million in funding for a "life-sized" replica of Noah's Ark and they sent probably the worst enemy of the Affordable Care Act back to Washington, to not only jeopardized the health coverage Kentuckians now have, but to endanger a blossoming industry as well.

Kentucky--two things:  (1) If you're going to spend $18 million on a fake boat, I guarantee you more people would flock to your State if you built the U.S.S. Enterprise or whatever the hell the name of Captain Steubing's ship was on "Love Boat."  

I'd say it was insane that people would pay money to look at a boat that reminds me that "God" killed everyone in a flood, but stranger things are happening!

(2) Kentucky--you don't get to complain about anything for the next six years.  Nothing!  You had a shot and you chose same ol'-same ol'.  Just go sit in the corner now and think about what you've done to yourselves.

And so it went across the country!  Iowans elected Joni Ernst, who will enter history as the first woman to represent the State in Congress.  Ernst actually made the point that she was used to castrating hogs so she'd be a "good fit" in Washington.  Republicans like to drone about the Founding Fathers and when you think back upon those men--inventors, legislators, ambassadors, architects of our Democracy--you think of Joni Ernst as well--right?  We need to start mass producing bronze busts of her immediately and place them next to Ben Franklin.

Ernst wasn't the only woman to enter history last night.  Mia Love became the first black Republican female to serve in Congress.  Ernst and Love's victories helped to create other milestones.  For the first time ever 100 woman serve in the Legislative branch.

 I just wonder if Ernst and Love (heh..sounds like a law firm...) will heed the advice of Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC) and let men bring policy "down to a women's level."

Who knows?  There might be pictures and puppets to hold their attention.  Perhaps the use of small words and analogies relating to kitchens.

Seriously, America elected this?



Oh-fucking-goody!

I think I answered a question from my last post:  "Is there a plan?"

Guess not.

It is strange times when Rush Limbaugh can make sense!  Why else would these clowns be elected?  Stop Barack Obama...from what?  Are we objecting to the unemployment rate?  To the 230,000 jobs?  The historic DOW numbers?  The increase in domestic oil production?

Pray tell...stop him from what?

There's been six years for the GOP to prosecute this supposed insidious undertaking by Obama.  With 3/4s of his term gone, this undertaking has yet to materialize, but they're still going to "stop him."

...and we fell for it.

In the closing days of Ernst's campaign, she couldn't decide if Obama was "apathetic" or a despot.  You can't be both folks, and that thought escaped both Ernst and Iowans.

Again with the fear.  That nebulous undefined threat, which is never proven and proof is never demanded of.  Just fear.  On Election Night, Americans became 7th grade mean girls and felt the need to fill the lunch table to pick on the kid with funny name and big ears.

Congrats! 

If there's one bright spot with this election, it's the demotion of Harry Reid. For too long Democrats have settled for Reid and Nancy Pelosi--who just today--announced her intention to retain her leadership position.  Swell.  Just swell.

A lot of Democrats are furious.  We should be.  The anger isn't being directed at the GOP, it's being directed inward, where it should be!  In this election cycle (and others), we've seen Democrats turn away from this President

If you are Democrat and haven't realized it, nothing will make you appealing to the would-be conservatives.  We are all "God-less," "abortionists," "gay-enabling," "socialist," hell-bent on a "nanny state" and the overthrow of Capitalism.

So why run? 
 
The easiest job on the planet, I would think, would be the attack-ad creator for the DNC.  What work do you have to do?!? 

The material is in no short supply and you don't even need to "spin" it.  You just need to remind people of it!  This--Democrats do not do.  Not well.

We have boring talking points.  Pick a divisive issue.  Any one.  The Republicans and Tea Party--you really can't expect what they are going to say.  Todd Kincanon, former head of the South Carolina GOP advocated executions for ebola.  Alex Jones followers wanted to plant landmines at our border to fend off children.  It doesn't get whackier than that people!!  At a minimum what you can count on is something loud, passionate, and gut-punching.

Democrats?  We show up with a fucking pie chart and talk percentages and GDP.  I think Jon Stewart said it best, "Democrats walk around with their dick stuck to their leg."
For all the bizarre claims, conspiracy theories, vague innuendo, and outright lies the GOP has produced, Democrats haven't fought back effectively against any of it.  It seems the Democratic leadership and DNC are content to let MSNBC and the late night talk show hosts do their fighting.

So true.

Contrary to conservative lore, not every Democrat is a liberal.  Not every Democrat has the same opinion on every issues.  We just don't drum people out of party for thinking differently.  If you are Democrat, it really is time to start to consider what that means.  It's more than being the "nice guys," who don't say crazy shit.  There's a reason why you chose this party and if you're ashamed of that reason, if you're not fired up over that reason, you're a derelict.  You're a derelict of duty.

Not since 1928, have the Republicans held the majority of Congress.  Anyone care to remember this historical significance of 1929?  

Coincidence?

For Democrats and non-conservatives, this election has been a giant black eye.  The bully came and we wanted to reason with him.  We didn't want to "fight."  We considered ourselves a "good person" and hoped others would recognize and remember that.

They didn't.

They don't.

Our best course is a change in legislative leadership and DNC style.  It's apparent that no one gives a fuck about "consecutive months of job creation," oil production, or the pluses and minuses of the GDP.  The gloves need to come off! 

It's become a daily event where some moron conservative says something completely off-the-wall and something that will never be rebuked by their party at large.  We let this go.  We let the country forget.  We need to fight back with the same venom, vigor, rabidness that GOP has been using for the last 6 years.

Some of these assholes are still on the fucking birth certificate thing!!!  We--we let minefield and executions fade away to oblivious....for percentage points?!?

The $24 Billion Man
Not everything is "lollipops and unicorns" in the GOP world.  If there was one other person who wanted to see McConnell bested as much as I, it had to be America's Favorite Do Nothing Politician--Ted Cruz.  Word has it, Teddy was in the wings just hoping for a shot at McConnell's job.  A Republican win of the Senate and a defeat for McConnell, might just have opened the door for McCarthy...er Cruz.
McConnell has since insisted there will be no government shut-downs--a possible swipe at Cruz.  What will Teddy have to do on Sunday mornings?

The Election, despite the numerous wins and wins by respectable margins at both the Federal and State levels, has been called a "wave" by both sides of the aisle.  To me the wave feels like a "landslide," but still it's called a wave.

I find that odd.

Perhaps it's called a "wave," because for so long the GOP has been the "exiled government" content to sit back and whine.  Now they are placed in a position of leadership, but clearly they are not united.  

What can we expect?

I'm sure tax breaks for the rich and corporations are already on the table.  Possible impeachment proceedings might begin--'cuz we haven't wasted enough of the Nation's time yet.  I personally fear another war.  And you can be guaranteed that gay marriage and worker's rights will be on the chopping block.

Then again, we're Democrats.  Don't pay any attention to that.  "The Voice" might be on.  Or Dancing with C-Rated Has-Been Stars.  Then again there's probably some reality TV show making cupcakes or some shit that is far more important.

Let's worry about that!

Right?



Monday, November 3, 2014

Decision 2014

With the mid-term elections just days away, I have to admit, I'm a little nervous.  Ok...I'm "a lot" nervous.  I don't have an agenda or even a "liberal agenda"--I just want shit to work.  I'd like to get back to a point where real issues get addressed, without the lies, without the dysfunction, and without the distraction.  I have a sick feeling that I am going to be woefully disappointed.

A few years ago, the idea of adding clinics to schools made its rounds through Congress.  It was an intriguing idea.  However, as solidly Dem as I am--at least these days--I had more than my share of fair questions:  (1)  Who's paying for this?  (2)  Where is the money coming from?  (3)  Are we talking existing space?  New construction?  (4)  What about infection and visitor control?  (5)  What about parking?  The list continued.

For the Republicans, well they panned the idea because school clinics would allow your fourth grade children to get an abortion.  I'm not sure what this says about fourth graders.  Well...actually I am pretty sure of what this says about fourth graders...  But abortion?  Really? 

I honestly don't get it.

All the relevant questions and objections that could be raised and the GOP leaps to abortion?  That's the crazy I've come to see out of today's GOP.  As I'm writing this, it's now just occurred to me--Did the GOP want fourth graders to be mothers?

I honestly don't get it.

I look at some of these boobs who have been elected and I just wonder, "Why?"  It happens on both sides.  For every Charlie Rangle, there is easily another Louis Goemert.  Both equally useless.  How Rangle was even reelected is beyond me. Goemert...Goemert is not a smart guy.  For as "devout" and "patriotic" as this guy is, what has he actually done?  For that matter, how about Rand Paul?  We could pick politicians from both sides of the aisle and ask that question.

But it amazes me that the politicians who seem to do the least, not only have so much to say, but people listen to them!  If you measure lack of achievement and compare it to political potential--Bachmann is queen!  This dope did n-o -t-h-i-n-g!  Yet it didn't stop her from mounting a Presidential bid.  People actually gave this dope money and her claim to fame was a light bulb bill!

I might be the only person watching these lazy bastards, who claim to "love" this country and talk of God, yet bemoan this country's "downfall," who wonders what the hell are they doing about it.  And these guys are BIG names.  It seems all they do is stand on the sidelines, lobbing political grenades and accusations, and giving interviews. 

Where are the ideas?

What is the plan?

Is there a plan?

If you don't like this bill or that law, what's your idea?

It seems to me we've been waiting six years for a counter plan.  Six years of our economy improving, not because of Obama, but just because of ordinary people, who have rolled up their sleeves and risked while Washington remains gridlocked.  It's been a struggle and an unnecessarily complicated struggle because of this gridlock.

We've actually sent idiot Tea Party candidates to Washington who vowed to not compromise.  The idea of a split ticket is actually long dead.  Instead of results, we settle for inaction, and then we bitch about the government that we're breaking.

How in the hell Mitch McConnell is even still viable is beyond me. Here's a guy who hasn't been willing to meet with editorial boards or even answer questions about his agenda if elected.  Yet, he's somehow fended off a primary challenge from the Tea Party and leads Grimes his Democrat opponent.  We don't buy cars like this!  If we walked into a show room and the dealer refused to answer any questions until after we bought the car, we'd walk away.

Not in Kentucky.

It has got to be easy to sell cars in Kentucky.

The success of these numbskulls and their ability to keep getting re-elected is largely due to the hate directed at President Obama.  It really isn't racism--not so much anymore--it's just plain ol' fashion hate.  Many aren't even certain why they hate them and if they do have a reason, it usually pretty ridiculous.  The man's name alone ("Obama") isn't "American" enough for some and yet the thought that there isn't a truly "American" name escapes these dummies.  We're all "mutts" descended from other nations. 

This hate has come to sicken this country.  At a time when we should be working together closest, we are farther apart than ever before.  Still, we've managed. Unemployment is dropping.  The Market is doing relatively well.  People did this, not the politicians.  It certainly wasn't some liberal or conservative plan that masterminded the recovery.

There really hasn't been a plan.  Has there?

The Obama Administration puts forth its agenda, where it's blocked in the Republican controlled House.  The GOP comes out with their own outlandish agenda, where it's blocked in the Senate.  Every measure of success, whether it is a drop in unemployment or a spike in the Market is greeted with contrariness by the GOP.  We can't even agree on good news.  The GOP spends most of their time talking about God, Abortion, and gays.  They've been content to sit the bench; giving interviews about how they hate the latest idea, with no plan of their own.

In the interim, we wait.

We suffer.

And while the political game is played, we put forth gross caricatures we have come to call "candidates."  They are angry.  They are "patriotic."  They are "devout."  They are mad as hell about the direction of this country and they're going to go to Washington to do...nothing.  As bad as things are, as they claim it to be, their goal is to be yet another foil against President Obama.  Their only idea is to obstruct and we elect them.  It's why I use quotes around words like "American," "patriotic," and "devout."  Because if these dummies really did believe in this country, if they truly were patriotic, and if they were half as devout as they claim--they wouldn't let blind hate bog down this country simply for hate's sake.

...and that's where we've been for six years--bogged down in hate.

Should the GOP take the Senate--and all polls indicate they will--I'm counting on two more years of being bogged down in hate.  Blogger Jim Wright at Stonekettle has some interesting predictions of what is--and more precisely, what isn't--to come from a Republican lead Senate. 

A minor upside of a Republican victory of the Senate is the loss of Harry Reid's Senate Majority "Leadership."  You'll have to forgive me, for I've lost track, but it was during one of the debt ceiling debacles wherein the Senate had to stay late to work, that Harry Reid whined about his trees blooming. 

People are out of work, losing their homes, the government might get shut down and this smarmy fuck is whining about his trees blooming back home?!?  Puh-lease.

Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are everything that is wrong with the Democrat Party.  These two may be the best damn vote gathers in all of creation, but "leadership..." Timid.  Small.  Boring as sin.  I couldn't tell you what either of these dimwit's vision of this country is and quite honestly, I doubt think they have one.  I'm honestly amazed these two doddering fops have kept their leadership positions this long! 

If the Democrats lose the Senate tomorrow, well...we deserved it.  From candidates running away from this President to a lackluster base that doesn't care or doesn't understand the importance, the loss will be deserved.  I hope I'm wrong, but maybe it's for the best.

Regardless--vote tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

74 in Less Than 2

 
It happened again.  We knew it would.  It was only a matter of time and to be fair--we really haven't been paying attention.  There have been so many things to worry about!!  Something had to give!  Why not this?  Again, we have another student, this time from Marysville, Washington, who decided to kill himself with a gun but not before spreading his misery to others.

The knee jerk reaction is going to be to blame the NRA.  Or Wayne LaPierre.  It's easy to blame them.  They are the recognized national figureheads of guns.  But it's a mistake to blame them.  They just aren't that important anymore or even relevant.  One might as well blame Microsoft for the demand of child pornography.  Although, I do suspect Microsoft is at least concerned with child pornography.  For them, it's all about the money!  They are a business.  As proven by their willingness to cow-tow to their more radical members (in Maryland and Texas to be precise), the NRA has shown they will gleefully trade lucidity for cash.  They aren't stupid.

Their members are.

For the last six years the NRA has enjoyed a fundraising bonanza.  The idea of a national "gun grab" dots their talking points and literature and what CPAC event would be complete without the threat the "gubment" was going to take your gun?  The gun grab myth has been so effective, that even when the NRA isn't talking about a gun grab, the gun nuts are!


Ask one of these bozos, what bill--what piece of legislation--is on the table that is going to take away their guns and you'll hear every goddamn pro gun talking point.  But...you won't hear anything about this "bill." Ask what the bill does and they'll repeat their stupid selves, regurgitating the same tired talking points.  Ask who introduced the legislation and they'll tell you President Obama.  At that point, you realize you're talking to moron who not only doesn't realize there is no "bill," but who also doesn't understand how bills work. Still, the gun grab myth works and dummies who can't tell you who introduced the bill, why, or what it does gleefully hand over their money to fight this imagined assault on the Second Amendment. 

The NRA is a business.


As news comes from the Marysville and we learn more about the shooter, less and less can we simply blame the NRA. The student shooter was obviously troubled and the alleged infidelity of his girlfriend was too much for him.  And so he made the decision that murder and suicide were his only recourse.

We are failing out children.

I suppose it is an easy thing to do these days. We have had so much distraction, strife, and rancor over the past several years, it's easy to get caught up. We've been so busy with ebola!  Tune into any TV station covering ebola and you'll find a Brady-Bunch grid of supposed experts talking about ebola.  On any station there are more people talking about ebola in the U.S., than actual citizens who have contracted ebola.  There was that "invasion" of fifty thousand diseased, raped, God-less, gang-banging children at our Southern Border.  We were going to be broke!  Slaves to filthy brown people; handing over our money so they could buy pinatas!  Isus--they cut off someone's head!!  They're coming across the border!  Run!!  Panic.  Fear.

Tally up, if you will, how many Americans have died due to gun violence in schools and compare that number to the combined American deaths caused by the border crisis, ebola, and Isus.  Once you do the math, I think we will finally have something to fucking shit our pants over.  If you want fear--if you want to piss and moan about the direction of this country, you don't need to look at our borders or even beyond them.  I realize many of us are still caught up with the stupid football players beating their girlfriend or their children, however since Sandy Hook, there have been 74 school shootings.

It's easy to fall into party lines on the subject.  Some will say a "gun nut" parent didn't secure their weapon and allowed this happen.  Others will blame "liberal parenting."  Some jackass will say, "This is what happens when we take Jesus out of the schools."   We'll talk about mental health, arming lunch aides with uzis, video games, movies, and whether or not we should even publicize these cases in the media.

What we won't talk about is us.

It has to suck to be a kid these days.  It has to be downright confusing and overwhelming.  The messages they hear provide no hope. No mercy.  No compassion.  No logic. No direction.

For the majority of these kids' lives, we have been a nation at war.  We not only can't decide if we should end the wars, we're far too damn eager to start others. We've had young people killed by adults and adults killed by young people.  We're less trusting of our neighbors, especially if they are black, poor, or of a different faith.  We talk about overthrowing our government and lie to these kids that their future is there for their taking.  We've actually become so selfish and hateful in this country that we have some threatening Civil War over, of all things, Obamacare.

Health care.

We have people expressing their desire to kill others over annual check ups.  Mammograms and prostates.

Are we surprised our kids are killing?

We don't like to talk about ourselves.  It's painful and ugly.  Especially when it's true.  I'm sure someone somewhere is sputtering reading this self-assured, they they know why this is happening.  But if each of us thinks back, our video games, movies, celebrities...were equally contemptible.  Our parenting was no more liberal or conservative than it is today.

The change is us.

It's the world we have presented to our youth.  Is it so hard to believe that our callousness, our willingness to dismiss or even condemn our fellow man has rubbed off on them?  People, we have others willing to kill over health care.  Health care.  The "evil influences" aren't coming from the media entirely...or even mostly.

To think, our children regularly practice how to not get shot at school during "lock down" drills.  They don't practice how to avoid getting beheaded by Isus.  They don't practice how to avoid getting ringworm from Guatemalans.  They don't have drills about ebola.  The practice and drill to avoid being shot, by fellow students or often someone from the neighborhood.  The threat is within.

In the '70s, I remember doing "air raid" drills.  We were made to go into the hallway and sit with our heads between our knees in front of our lockers.  Although only 6 or 7 years old, I had no idea how this was going to protect me from a bomb dropped from a plane.  The hallway didn't seem the be the safest spot!  This was the best they could do?!?

I'd learn years later that "air raid drills" was a euphemism of sorts for "big ass Soviet ICBM detonating and vaporizing me into ashes."  I was put in front of my locker, not for my safety, but for identification.  And you know what?  All of that seems sort of silly to me know.

Then again...

Kids my age getting vaporized at their schools wasn't a fairly regular thing.  I don't think I even knew what a "Soviet" or "ICBM" was back then.  Today's kids...today's kids are keenly aware of the danger.  Not just the suggested danger, but the probable danger.  It happens in the North.  It happens in the South.  Blue State.  Red State.  Big school. Small school.  Teenagers.  Elementary kids.  Classmates.  Strangers. 

Just an aside here:  But is there a "script?" I mean how exactly do you explain to a kindergartener that everyone is going to hide and be quiet to prepare for someone walking the halls with a gun, who probably wants to shoot them?

We're expecting...what...from this?

Well adjusted young adults?

Really?

And we're okay with this?!?

All too soon, Alex Jones and his "InfoWars" misfits were quick to label the shooting at Marysville a "False Flag."  It never happened.  It was staged.  Jones makes a living selling fear and conspiracies and as far as I'm concerned, he already has blood on his hands.

The LAX Shooter who killed a random TSA Agent, was an avid listener of Jones and reader of "InfoWars."  To Jones and his crew, the TSA are "jack booted thugs" of the government, "shredding your Fourth Amendment"...'cuz everyone should be allowed onto a plane with a bomb...or some silly shit.  Still, Jones enjoys great success, in large part to his army of tin-foil hat wearing, conspiracy theorist, Illumanati-NWO fear mongers.

To Jones and company, Sandy Hook was a "false flag."  The Boston Bombing was a "false flag."  Marysville is a "false flag."

For those that support Jones, President Obama can't do anything right.  The man wakes up wrong!  The cry and whine daily that our government is corrupt, inefficient, and mismanaged.  Yet, seemingly, our government has extraordinary skills in arranging these "false flags."

Twenty children and six teachers died at Sandy Hook.  Our nation shrugged.  We were told this "was the price for freedom."

Are we still expecting well-adjusted youth?

I'd like for any of these denying assholes to be dragged into the morgue, to watch the parents of dead children identify the body.  To have these creeps sit through the autopsy.  To have these jerks walk among the classmates terrified by fear and wracked by loss.  Then to have them crawl on their hands and knees to the parents, after the casket has been lowered, and beg forgiveness.

...random beatings with a ballpeen hammer wouldn't necessarily be discouraged, but I'm in a "charitable" mood tonight.

Jones and company have since tried to blame CNN for their premature false flag.  It's the sort of thing that happens when you form an opinion on inferences.  It also helps if you're really fucking eager to deny gun violence.  The premise of Jones's false flag was based on a gun control initiative on the ballot for the State of Washington.  To this addled crew, our utterly incompetent, tan suit wearing, latte-saluting, complete failure of a President, decided to "create" this false flag to swing the vote.

...and for all the fucking moron chronically masturbating conspiracy theorists out there:  "tyrannical despots" who are "hell bent" on "destroying this country" don't influence votes.  Really--you dopes have to decide if he's a tyrant, completely incompetent, or some genius mastermind who arranges false flags.  After six year of indecision on your part, get your shit straight or just shut the fuck up already.

Legislation, is the current favorite method to combat gun violence.  As any gun advocate will tell you, "Criminals don't follow laws."  They are correct in this.  Many New Yorkers have been worked up about the S.A.F.E Act--they way it was passed and how it affects gun owners.  I'm inclined to agree--to a point.  The only person that is going to be prosecuted by the SAFE Act, is the guy who actually stops for the cops and who miscounted his bullets.  Some poor working stiff bastard, eager to get on the road for a day of hunting, shooting, whatever...is going to be looked at like a would be mass murder.

But legislation is the only tool at our disposal.  It's easy to rally around the "ban guns" banners with two more dead and three critically wounded.  But on the day of the Marysville shooting, a lesser publicized story also hit the wires.  A North Carolina grandfather fended off a trio of young men who invaded his home and attempted to rape his granddaughter.  A perfect case of the castle doctrine. To some, this perfect case, is all the justification needed.  Seventy-four school shootings since Sandy Hook will be wiped away from memory and relevance because of one "perfect" case. 

And yet, on the same goddamn day, an illegal alien who had been deported twice, killed two officers with an AK-47.  October 24, 2014 was quite the day for gun violence.  If you haven't been counting, more lives were taken than saved.

I said I agreed with the opposition to the SAFE Act--to a point.  Let me explain.  Tough shit!  That about sums it up.

The law is crap, but y'know what...many of the people against this law are even shittier.  When others Rights across this country have been infringed upon, you didn't hear a goddamn peep from the anti-SAFErs.  They weren't quoting the Constitution then or arranging rallies.  It's only when their personal selfish world was infringed upon, that they took issue.

Gun owners have wrapped themselves in this vanity-ridden faux nobility myth. They actually believe this horseshit too and it makes them sound like swell people.  They aren't.

Gun owners are just that--gun owners.  They aren't "patriots."  They aren't here to "protect the homeland."  Patriots and protectors of the homeland don't sit on their asses when 20 children get gunned down in a school.  They don't get that title.  Want to be a patriot?  Go take the spot of some 19 year old heading to Afghanistan or Iraq.  Already served?  Don't care--you're job ain't done.  If these guys are going to romance over some perceived ordained responsibility to protect us--goddamn it--go do it!!  I could care less what any Founding Father wrote 200+ years ago, because I am goddamn certain that children hiding under tables in a school wasn't part of the fucking plan!!

I have probably heard every stupid friggin' reason why guns are "needed."  Not one gun owner has discarded the myth and been honest and said, "They're cool and I like to blow shit up after a long week."  What is wrong with that?!?  No.  No.  I get the same warped history lesson, dotted with quotes conservative web sites and blogs have cherry-picked, and inevitably I hear some nonsense about fending off the government.

Well...the government better goddamn well hurry up with this "take over."  Seventy-four shootings in our schools alone in less than two years isn't going to leave a whole helluva lot of people left to "round up!"

To hear people say, that the death of 20 children is "the price we pay for freedom..."  What the fuck is that?!?  What a complete goddamn cop-out.  What a cowardly thing to say.  What a cold dismissive thing to say.

Are we still banking on well adjusted youth, with this type of mentality and morality?

With all the legislation directed at gun control, there has been no lucid argument from gun-owners.  Gun-owners, not gun organizations.  These overpaid fear-based fundraising machines have blotted out all common sense of gun owners.  Gun owners realize school shootings happen.  They know home invasions happen.  They know some crazy prick who can't get laid might roll down the street shooting.  It's why the bought the goddamn gun in the first place!

For gun-owners its time to stop cowering behind the Second Amendment and stand in front of it.  They can't argue patriotism, or safe guarding the home front, or even that they are "law-abiding" when so many of their brethren are absolute morons with their guns!

May 6, 2014 -- A New Jersey man shoots his 11 year old nephew in the head, killing him obviously, while demonstrating the laser sight.  It works!

How, as a demographic, can this group be so ready to believe in false flags and government take overs, but can't see the gross irresponsibility of fellow owners?  Gun owners are going to "save me" from the government?!?  It seems like I'm likely to be shot by one of them as they show me their toy!

This myth and fake nobility of gun ownership has to be shed.  It's really more of a punchline now--a running joke.  Seventy-four school shootings in two years is morbidly impressive, but I've got a feeling if we look at accidental deaths and shooting from legitimate gun owners, we most likely meet, probably exceed, and perhaps double that number.

A lot of gun owners feel persecuted. They feel the can't legally own a gun without harassment or undue bureaucracy.  Well...what are they doing about it?  I mean aside from reciting the Constitution and imaging government takeovers...  Anything?  You won't hear the gun organizations condemning sloppy gun ownership.  Gun owners will tell you that they are "trained" and "know what they are doing."  I've read enough news stories about older family members shooting children, children shooting older family members, and children shooting children to disagree with that.

Hell I've read where the idea of even locking up an unused weapon is an 'assault' on the Constitution.  I'm betting some students in Marysville wished one .40 caliber handgun was locked up.

It really is time the gun owners took back their hobby and sport from the gun organizations.  They are losing this fight through legislation--legislation which only snags the truly good guys.  Sincere gun owners who are respectful of their weapon and their responsibility, would never tolerate a loaded weapon to be pointed at anyone's head for a "demonstration."  So why do they allow it now?  Why the silence?  Why the acceptance of idiocy of their own?

Is there not one gun owner or organization that will ask the obvious question, "Who the fuck let the kid take a .40 caliber gun to school?!?"  I know...it's not as sexy as government conspiracy theories.  It doesn't make them feel as good as being a "patriot."

What it does do, is that it shows some integrity.  It gives others some faith, that not every gun owner is an blood thirsty hermit waiting for someone to come onto their porch to "castle-doctrine" them.  Or that they aren't playing Russian-roulette with their toddler.  It makes the pro gun argument stronger, with no need of myth or fake nobility.