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?
My real mother (who passed when I was in the second grade) had lots of 78 RPM records of classical music – including The Nutcracker Suite done straight by Spike Jones! I still have some of them.
My dad was a big band kinda guy. And 50’s crooners. Perry Como, etc.
And my exposure to music didn’t include most rock-and-roll or folk. (My sister worshipped Elvis, though.)
In grade school, a friend asked me if I liked ‘popular music’. I said no. He replied, “not even Mister Tambourine Man?”
I had never heard it.
I was too busy listening to Johann Sebastian Bach.
I loved – and love – this piece:
My leg disability developed between Eighth Grade and High School. No P.E. for Guffaw. The high school principal ask me if I could play an instrument. I could not. He said, “Well it’s Choir for you!”, as if it were some kind of punishment.
I loved choir. They taught me how to sing (in the baroque manner), and how to read music. And how to appreciate Jazz! (Stan Getz, anyone?)
We even made All-State when I was a Senior, and we got to sing on the stage at the university’s Grady Gammage Auditorium (designed by Frank Lloyd Wright!)
It was after I graduated and went on to college that I developed a liking for popular music. The Beatles, The Eagles, Credence Clearwater Revival, Linda Ronstadt, Fleetwood Mac, Emerson, Lake and Palmer and many others. Jethro Tull. I even taught myself a bit of flute to play along!
“Thank goodness,” UNC senior Thomas Rees said. “But it’s there for protection.”
Rees keeps a small Smith & Wesson 9 mm pistol and a large Mossberg 88 shotgun in his off-campus apartment in Chapel Hill. On Tuesday afternoon, before bringing his firearms outside, Rees went into a back room and — with a click that accompanies guns being cocked — removed the ammunition from the guns’ chambers.
Sensible people with concealed carry permits should be able to take their guns on campus, he said.
“The bad guys would catch on and realize they can’t just rape or mug or murder whoever they want,” he said. “They’d know a lot of people have firearms, and they’re going to fight back.”
A North Carolina law passed in 2013 allowing concealed carry permit owners to bring guns on public college campuses — as long as they were stored in closed compartments in locked cars. Nationwide, there has been a push to allow guns more liberally on campuses.
And now there’s a new argument; they’ll help curb sexual violence.
The plan was to send my daughter off to college with all the tools necessary to survive and flourish. Including the ability to balance a checkbook, cook, and use a defensive firearm. Unfortunately, I never got the chance to implement it.
The mindset of the promoters of ubiquitous defenseless persons continues to amaze me. I truly don’t know what else to say.
The lovely (and brilliant) Tamara says it better than I EVER could!
I’m reminded of the joke that all the people running around with “Free Tibet!” stickers on their cars would have been horrified if Dubya had woken up one morning and decided to send the 82nd Airborne to actually, you know, free Tibet. “I didn’t mean like that!“
Hashtag, smashtag – it’s great to believe an injustice is being perpetrated, and that something needs to be done. But just placing a bumper sticker or hashtaggingsomething relevant on Twitter isn’t going to accomplish squat! (Mrs. Obama!)
ACTION is needed.
The Red Chinese aren’t going to give a hoot if some teens gather excitedly in Pittsburgh to hear Richard Gere wax eloquently regarding the poor Tibetans plight.
Frankly, I suspect even if every college student worldwide sent the Red Chinese government a letter no hoot would be given. Because the PRC knows the truth –
Power grows out of the barrel of a gun – Mao Tse Tung
And, while we’re on the subject, it’s not a hashtag, number sign or even a pound sign.
I know it’s a parallel universe, or the bizarro world when a liberal spew sheet such as Time actually allows such a radical op-ed in it’s pages. Of course, I suspect the following letters-to-the-editor were scathing indictments of an America, crime laden with youngsters poisoned by such criminal tutelage.
1) The times (Times), they are a changin’., and
2) I don’t care about the opinions of those who seek to deny the law-abiding their rights – unless, of course, they are in power!
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!
"One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas - how he got in my pajamas I dunno!" - Groucho Marx as Captain Spaulding in Animal Crackers
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It’s about who is at the tiller of this Republic’s Ship of State. - Guffaw
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"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."
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