…or Send In The Clowns!
I cannot decide which meme is better.
There have been many blog postings of late, some of which even on this humble blog, writing of the growth in worldwide anti-Semitism, government-sponsored violence, religion-sponsored violence, massive surveillance, and wholesale Statism.
And there appears to be a modicum of support against such things.
There is a tendency to view such things as off-shore. Somewhere else. Another countries’ problem. And to turn a blind eye to our own versions of such things.
Until it’s too late.
Some folks write as if it IS too late. That civil upheaval is inevitable. Others clamor for constitutional conventions. As though people who control such things can keep the outcome constitutional.
And this new world order of constitution will certainly
include or delete a second amendment.
Depending on the flavor of the new constitution’s founding fathers.
What to do, what to do.
Sit on our hands and whine? Join the convention(s)? Join the revolt?
DON’T BOTHER – THEY’RE HERE!
I’m old enough to remember the Watts riots in L.A., Detroit. Rodney King? And a multitude of others. And something has always bothered me:
WHY do these folks feel the need to violently destroy THEIR OWN NEIGHBORHOODS to make a point?
In days of yore, I participated in protests. I remember one at the State Capitol, wherein we stood in the Summer heat (all 250 or so of us) to protest The Clinton so-called ‘Assault Weapons Ban’, and our own State legislature considering similar legislation. This was in the 90’s – the temperature was around 100°.
And not one of us engaged in violence, criminal looting or destruction. We had been advised not to come armed, and we didn’t. We carried signs (and American flags), signed petitions, talked amongst ourselves and drank lots of water. And listened politely to speakers like Sheriff Mack. And watched media trucks circle us deciding whether or not we were worth a spot on the 10 o’clock news.
Apparently we weren’t.
Here’s one opinion as to why they foul their own nests:
The borderline-Jacobins at Slate, who believe spanking is child abuse, and personal responsibility is out of fashion, try to explain looting away as a social phenomenon: “Why would anyone burn down the only CVS in their neighborhood?”
The reason, I think, is likely the same reason that poor black Americans in cities across the country burned “their own” neighborhoods in the late 1960s:
They did not experience those places as their own. Then, like now, police brutality was a precipitating cause of the violence, but it was the long-term experience of the indignities of the ghetto that gave shape to the riots. Then, like now, commentators compared the rioters to animals who had run wild and needed discipline. Rioting, to these bystanders, was not proper political protest but the criminal actions of poor people who merely wanted to grab what they could for free. This narrative, which I heard throughout my childhood growing up in Baltimore in the 1980s, put the blame not on the depredations of the ghetto, but on the character of its residents. It completely misapprehends the political economy of our poorest neighborhoods.
In other words: they riot because society has ignored them. Not only is that a specious argument, but it also highlights the fact that Baltimore hasn’t had a Republican mayor since 1968. So which party is responsible for ignoring the downtrodden social class?
Told another way, Abraham Miller at National Review wrote:More @ Red State
I enjoy a good political discussion. Or even a debate. Unfortunately, in today’s climate, they often regress into name-calling, accusations and loud pronouncement as akin to grade school’s “Oh YEAH? Yeah!”
Why does this happen? Back as early as the 80’s, political enemies would do the “Oh Yeah” thing across the aisle, then adjourn to the neighborhood bar to share a beverage or two, and tell each other how great and principled each one was.
It’s become a sharper exchange, now. One where one might be reviewing the dark bar parking lot for the presence of ‘friends’ as well as enemies!
The reason? People no longer seem to subscribe to agreeing to disagree, because whatever the political cause, it’s become their RELIGION.
Want to annoy a Roman Catholic? Tell him he’s a papist, and that the Pope IS indeed fallible. A Republican? That he’s a shill for corporate lobbyists, and therefore has no soul. A Democrat? That most any policy foisted upon this nation by the current President is extra-Constitutional and illegal, and he deserves to be impeached, convicted and imprisoned.
Their response will undoubtedly be you don’t like him because he’s Black, and you are therefore racist. And that makes any argument you present invalid.
And that will p*** you off!
No more are there rational, reasoned exchanges back and forth regarding policies. Now it’s all name-calling and telling people what they believe is B.S.
It indeed may be, but that is not a way to discuss and argue.
THAT should be everyone’s mantra.
(As the election is FINALLY over, and it’s been a while since we shared a Guffaw!)
As told in LOLtrek GIF style!
When it comes to television entertainment, many times I’ve been behind the 8-ball! For example, I liked science fiction as a child (must have read Bradbury’s Marooned on Mars 20 times in the 4th Grade, and watched Forbidden Planet and The Outer Limits whenever they were on).
But most 60’s TV, sci-fi wise was lacking. Lost in Space? Puleez!
I kept hearing about this show Star Trek from my geek friends. “Gotta watch it!” So one night when my parents were out for the evening, I turned it on. The episode, unfortunately, was ‘The Trouble with Tribbles’.
I thought it was the stupidest thing I’d ever seen – right up there with the Adam West Batman show. Of course, I didn’t understand ‘camp’.
Fast forward a few years and Star Trek went into syndication. And I started picking it up by default. Except for Tribbles, I never watched it in prime time. Later, I learned to appreciate it. Great stuff!
It was as if I determined I didn’t like all grapes because the one I picked was sour!
Of course, since that time, I became a minor trekker (not trekkie) and have seen most of the later TV permutations and movies.
(I even dated a beautiful sci-fi nerd who had Star Trek porn – but, that’s another post! :-) )
My career as an (unsuccessful) television critic continued when it was announced M.A.S.H. would become a TV show. I’d seen the film, and read the book, and decreed there was no way they could do those things on television! Of course, they softened and rebranded it, and it lasted (I think) eleven years!
This from the kid who was profoundly annoyed when they replaced The Man From U.N.C.L.E. with Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In!
The times (and me, apparently) were a’changin’!
At NRO, Frank Miniter examines what the billionaires contributing to gun control groups hope to accomplish, and the playbook they’re using:
In a section labeled “Overall Messaging Guidance,” the guide gives its number-one “Key Messaging Principle”: “Always focus on emotional and value-driven arguments about gun violence, not the political food fight in Washington or wonky statistics.” It further explains this strategy by saying, “It’s critical that you ground your messaging around gun violence in prevention by making that emotional connection.” Its second key principle is: “Tell stories with images and feelings.” The guide says, “Our first task is to draw a vivid portrait and make an emotional connection. We should rely on emotionally powerful language, feelings and images to bring home the terrible impact of gun violence.” They realize they’ve lost the rational and empirical debates about what really stops gun violence and instead want the debate enflamed by emotion.
That’s ever the way, of course; you can’t win the argument with rational facts, so legislate by emotions.
Isn’t this the tack they take with virtually EVERYTHING? After all, it’s for the children!
Or correctly, To What Is This World Coming?
I was waiting out back (the parking lot) behind our townhome for J. to arrive from work and collect me. We had scheduled a dinner out.
Then, I heard a sharp, crunching noise. Then I heard it again. I looked to my 4:00, and there were two misguided youths
undisciplined criminal vandals next to the North block wall of the complex. Taking turns kicking it with side kicks (!), and pointing to the ever-increasing weak spots in the wall’s construction!
I immediately yelled at them to stop.Their response was to look at their shoes, mumble “Sorry”, and then hurriedly climb over the section of the now destabilized wall. If I’d been smarter, I’d have gotten closer and taken cell phone photos of them to show the homeowner’s association and the police.
Shortly thereafter, J arrived, and I asked her to drive North to the next turn in, to see if I could spot them. I wasn’t able to get a good face photo.
I’ve been told that section of wall is vandalized and has been repaired regularly, for years. (It’s a short-cut from various schools.)
The question is, should I bother notifying the authorities (the local police and homeowner’s association) or, since no one else seems to care and they just keep repairing the wall, should I just forget about it?
It’s one of those ‘he said – yutes said’ situations…
PS – (now, to sound like an old man): When I was a kid, it never even occurred to me to damage anyone else’s property, let alone trespass! I got in serious trouble for walking across the corner of a neighbor’s lawn – by about two feet – when my Dad saw me.
These clowns obviously never heard the phrase‘ life, liberty and property’ in history class!
I wrote earlier this month regarding my two years of formal training in martial arts. Not much, I know. About 15 years later, I actively shot in I.P.S.C. – style competition for about a year. There is a similarity in these disciplines.
Most martial arts training (I’m speaking of Asian-based) begins with a set position. A formal stance from which one begins – either ‘sparring’ (usually play-acting as through striking one’s opponent), or kata (aka forms), going-through-the-motions as if encountering an opponent. Shadow boxing. Responding to an imaginary adversary.
And I.P.S.C. (and it’s later permutations) of active ‘combat’ shooting competition usual does the same thing. One starts in a particular place, with particular equipment, in a particular position. Then the whistle blows. (At least U.S.P.S.A. and I.D.P.A. have done some evolution!)
The problem in both these situations is muscle memory. We revert to that which we were trained to do. One responds to a fist to the face by an outward-extended block, trapping the arm and stepping in with a counter strike. One sees one’s adversary present a pistol in one’s direction, and the response is immediate – Grip, Clear, Click, Smack, Sight – or some variant, as one moves into Isosceles or Weaver – feet into the ‘correct’ position to respond.
WRONG. At least wrong in the real world.
Training is good. Dry practice, repetitive presentations, trigger control, sight alignment, the compressed-surprise break. Even practiced stances and grips. All good. Competition is good, especially active competition as opposed to just punching holes in paper, dueling-style. But, those are not enough, and can set in some dangerous muscle-memory habits!
Remember they used to say in malfunction clearance drills Tap, Rack, Bang? They changed it to Tap, Rack, Assess, because some folks had malfs, cleared their firearm and came out shooting. Reflexively.
The same thing applies in our training. If we train to respond with B follows A – bad things are happening, we must attain our proper stance and grip, and use both hands, and have our feet correct – we won’t have the time to find cover and respond appropriately. We will be dead.
The venerable Bruce Lee called kata vertical death – because it set a pattern of muscle memory and took unneeded time. Don’t just practice B follows A – try presenting and shooting weak handed, from prone and supine, and in a chair; and holding a heavy sack in your strong hand. If someone send a fist to your face, don’t automatically do a ‘standard’ response. Dodge the fist simultaneously doing a stop kick.
Think outside the box! Armed or unarmed.
On the street, no one will announce, “Shooter ready?!”
Fill Yer Hands recently blogged regarding a minor phenomena I’ve seen more and more of. And, frankly, have heard about for years.
You’re a gun owner – why don’t you join the NRA or the SAF or some other pro-rights organization and put your money-where-your-mouth is?
Because I don’t want to be on a list.
You think that mouthing off in your local watering hole about the President or his policies, or buying firearms and ammunition, or prepping, or posting comments on the Internet haven’t already gotten someone’s attention?
It’s been widely reported that the ‘temporary’ NICS background check files have been (illegally) saved by the FBI, and every time a licensed gun shop goes under, they are required to ship all their filed Federal Forms 4473 to the BATFE. We suspect there’s a huge database, although we’ve no positive proof.
How about the DHS Watch Lists when flying, or taking a train, or traveling abroad? Or the NSA monitoring all the email traffic electronically, looking for key words like ‘guns’ in messages?
Personally, I suspect there has always been a list, and I involuntarily was added to it upon my first ‘papered’ firearm purchase. And my ranting in this blog (and as a commenter on other blogs) about libertarianism, the Constitution, Gun Rights, Civil Liberties and various government abuses probably has made my file thicker.
But, I don’t care. Why? If indeed there are concerted efforts to monitor the actions and locations of possible threats (e.g. gun owners and free-thinking people) I’m probably at the head of the line. Not only am I a gun owner and speak out about it, I’ve spoken publicly about the JFK assassination.
If there indeed IS a list, and we as a nation cross the Rubicon, I’ll never make to the camps…
(quietly removes tin-foil hat and skulks away…)
Many bloggers have been posting of late regarding the ongoing elimination of rights by the government. I’ve been one of the folks posting. And, with the exception of the occasional ‘troll’, I’m pretty much preaching to the choir.
And sometimes that’s appropriate. We need to support and reaffirm one another.
BUT, what does one do with the community outside the ‘church’? Friends, co-workers, family who are not gun owners, who don’t participate in the gun culture, who either are neutral about firearms or just a little uneasy with them?
We need them, as well.
Those people who don’t see that when some folks rights are taken away, all rights are on the table for removal.
I’ve one friend, a libertarian, who understands The Constitution and The Bill of Rights and all that. I’ve even taken him shooting. Just doesn’t interest him. He’s not anti, just not a supporter. A close relative who knows I’d be happy to bring her into the world of guns; to train her and help her to be more self-protective. But she fears her own temper, so she won’t consider it.
We need these folks, if not in our gun corner, in our political corner.
How do we do that?
Anybody? Bueller? Bueller?