Southern Style: The Belle

Welcome back to the south, friends, where our chicken is fried and biscuits come with gravy.  Y’all pull up a rocker and grab a glass of tea.  Why don’t we chat a spell about Southern Belles?belle1

Tell me, do you think of Scarlett O’Hara?  A delicate young lady with a feminine southern drawl?  Bless your little heart,  we probably all do. We imagine hoop skirts, wide-rimmed hats, and parasol umbrellas.

More than that, we envision a flirtatious, yet chaste, beauty, who has been taught that hospitality can win the day – and the man.  Even though, the man she will always love best is Daddy. (wink)  Mama has taught her that a wide front porch is the ideal setting for entertaining guests, and manners – ladies never sweat or cuss, thank you very much! – are of utmost importance.

As time passed, things changed.  Fiddle-dee-dee!!  Hoop skirts were replaced with feminine skirts.  Wide hats replaced with regular salon visits.  Women began to venture outside their homes to work.  In short, Scarlett O’Hara was replaced by Julia Sugarbaker and friends.

These changes, or advancements, came about by both force and choice.  Many women had to seek employment in order to care for their families.    Many more chose to seek a life outside of the traditional roles laid before them.

Gone with the wind.. are the days where a smart girl lets a man take credit for doing exactly what she wants him to do.

Todays Belle prefers to take credit for doing exactly what she wants to do.  Todays Belle is often the sole provider for her family.  She is educated.  She is industrious.  She is determined and persistent.  She knows her own mind.  And she is speaking it.  Loudly and clearly.

Let’s meet a few, shall we?

belle2If you haven’t already, meet Wendy Davis.  Mrs. Davis is a Harvard educated lawyer and Democrat from Forth Worth, Texas.

I’m rising on the floor today to humbly give voice to thousands of Texans who have been ignored. These voices have been silenced by a governor who made blind partisanship and personal political ambition the official business of our great state.

With those opening words, she solidified her place on the national stage.  She became a hero for women when she donned her pink tennis shoes and staged an 11- hour filibuster against an abortion bill she labeled “draconian”.  The bill would have banned all abortions after 20 weeks and closed all but five abortion clinics in the state.

Hats off to this Belle for showing them what a filibuster really is…No food, drink, sitting, leaning, or breaks of any kind.  Yes, friends, an honest to God filibuster!  We have become accustomed to the “threat” of filibuster by our do-nothing Congress.  Because a do-nothing Congress can’t be expected to actually do anything, right?  And while her friends from across the aisle think she owes them something, the rest of us think she has a bright future ahead of her.

Wendy Davis isn’t the only Belle of the ball.  I’m not sure how many of you know of Alison Grimes.  This attorney and Democrat currently holds belle3the position of Secretary of State of Kentucky.  She is also seeking to replace Mitch McConnell in the United States Senate.  With her sweet smile and gentle voice, she has laid down the gauntlet:

Now this part’s for you Senator. Your campaign wants to play silly games about where I am and where I stand.  Well I’m right here in Kentucky, Senator, where I’ll be holding you accountable for voting to double Medicare premiums on Kentucky seniors, including our retired coal miners, for being against requiring the Department of Defense to buy equipment that’s made in America first, for failing to stand up for women when you voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, and the Violence Against Women Act, and for opposing raising the minimum wage over and over again while you became a multimillionaire in public office.

Well, I do declare…these ladies aren’t sitting on their porches gossiping about the town cad, are they?  A younger generation of southern women are eager to help change the tone in government and further our nation’s progress.  Take a peek at this:

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Southern Belles are raising hell…

along with millions of other women, all over the country.  The largest and most reliable voting block in the country has something to say.

Are you listening?

Kirsten Gillibrand is tackling sexual assault in the military.   Elizabeth Warren is sick of banks being catered to, while students pay the price.  Not one to abandon veterans, is Tammy Duckworth.  Interior Secretary, Sally Jewell, doesn’t want climate change deniers in her department.

It is past time for women to take their rightful place, side by side with men, in the rooms where the fates of peoples, where their children’s and grandchildren’s fates, are decided.  – Hillary Clinton

Women, the Belles included, are no longer content to be seen as pretty shells with a uterus.  So, you should be listening.

Not Far Enough

This past weekend, my family made our umpteenth trek through the nation’s capital.

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We picked quite a day for it.  It was nearly 100 degrees.  And the humidity!  Let’s just say it was the type of heat that would make Satan knock on your door to ask for a glass of iced water!

Our plan was simple.  The children would see each and every thing they wanted to see.  If time allowed, I could do the same.  Which was a good thing, since the only thing I hadn’t seen a million times was the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial.

We spent many hours walking and talking.  We spoke of the American spirit and discussed inventions that changed the world.  We debated which famous American was best, in his/her respective field.  I had to referee the occasional brotherly skirmish.  In other words, it was your typical garden variety family day-trip.

It never dawned on me that I would learn anything .. from my children.

Let me remind you:  It. Was. Hot. My asthma was trying to take center stage.  I had four (somewhat spoiled and over-indulged) boys in tow.  By the time the kids were satisfied that they had seen all they wanted to see, I was exhausted.  And, sure, trying to ensure the satisfaction of four boys can make me a little cranky.  My overall mood was not great.

The more we walked, the less oxygen I seemed to take in.  I was stopping every ten feet to catch my breath.  I wanted to give up on the journey.  I was urged to give up and “just see it next time”.  But I have lived long enough to know that there may be no next time.  And to be perfectly honest, that stubborn Mommy part of me was determined that if I had been walking through an inferno for 7 hours, I would damn well see that exhibit.  Or pass out trying.

Not understanding, my oldest son remarked: “Mom, I know you want to see this thing, but it’s hot and you can’t breathe.  Maybe we should forget it.  Is it really worth all that?”

[Enter visions of cotton fields, torched houses, protests, jail cells]

To which, I responded: “That is why I must keep going.  Men and women, like King, got sick.  They kept going.  People told them it wasn’t worth it, but they kept going.  Heat wasn’t the only thing beating at them, but.. They. Kept. Going.”

So…we kept going.  I was dizzy, light-headed, and wheezing.  But I kept going.

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Finally!!  We were there!  At that moment, my fatigue vanished.  My initial joy was not in seeing the monument.  It was in pride that I made it without collapsing.  It was all about me.

Once I realized that, I took a step back.  I removed myself from the equation.  I remembered how grateful I am for those –  like Dr. King –  who removed themselves from the equation, daily, so that we all might have a better quality of life.  I read his words on the Inscription Wall, and I felt humbled.  And small and petty.  My small accomplishment of “making it” paled in comparison to the type of endurance he needed.  Every day of his life.

After having splashed my face and arms with water from the waterfall, I turned to the faces of my children.  Observing me.. and my humility.

Initially, I was a little embarrassed.  They, then, did something I will never forget.  They, too, splashed their faces and arms.

At that moment, a lesson was driven home.  Children need to observe humility.  They need to see adults continually fighting for what is right, fighting for a more perfect union.

Sadly, it isn’t  hard for me to imagine Dr. King’s America.

An America of fear, prejudice, and hatred.  An America where equality is privilege.

True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice.     MLK 1963

An America of poverty.  An America that excuses bad behavior and ignorance.  An America where workers are treated poorly.

I have the audacity to believe that peoples everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, equality, and freedom for their spirits.     MLK 1964

An America at war.

It is not enough to say “We must not wage war.”  It is necessary to love peace and sacrifice for it.  We must concentrate not merely on the negative expulsion of war, but on the positive affirmation of peace.     MLK 1967

I can imagine it, because that is MY America, to a lesser degree.  We, as a society, have become complacent and selfish.  We rationalize this by saying we have come pretty far from King’s America.  Well, I say we haven’t come far enough.  I say there is always work to be done.

Wouldn’t you agree?

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This Civilian

Anybody who has been reading the last few weeks knows that my focus has been on the military.  During the course of my 16 year relationship with a U.S. Marine, I have learned a great deal about military culture.  The issues our service members face hold a special place in my heart.

Okay.  So this morning I am having my (required) second cup of coffee, and I run across a discussion on this.

After cleaning off my keyboard and fighting my gag reflex, I got angry.  Violently angry.

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That is to be expected, right?  Who wouldn’t be angry about this type of dehumanization and abuse as a weapon of war?

It is now known, Cienfuegos wrote in May 2004, that hundreds of these photographs had been in circulation among the troops in Iraq. The graphic photos were being swapped between the soldiers like baseball cards.

Baseball cards?!?  <Seething>

Look.  For the past few months, I have been exposed to all manner of military activists hellbent on convincing me that our government is headed towards tyranny.  I have been reminded, countless times, that they have fought for our freedom only to see it now being incrementally snatched away by a despotic government.

Yet, they defend the organization for which they fought tooth and nail.  They tell me I just don’t understand.  Because I am a civilian.

By all means, help me understand.

The government is a highly secretive organization, marked by cronyism and wasteful spending.  The security of any given “mission” often trumps individual rights.  Human rights violations are rampant because decisions are often made by those with no experience in a particular issue.  Scandals are often times covered up and justified because the organization’s primary focus is on protecting the institution.

The military is a highly secretive organization, marked by cronyism and wasteful spending.  The security of any given “mission” often trumps individual rights.  Human rights violations are rampant because decisions are often made by those with no experience in a particular issue.  Scandals are often times covered up and justified because the organization’s primary focus is on protecting the institution.

So….what’s the difference, again?

Look, I am not pointing fingers here.  I am simply pointing out that the Military Industrial Complex is just as, if not more, corrupt than government.

Baseball cards?

No one can tell me the government is violating our human rights, while photographs of abuse are passed around like friggin’ baseball cards.

No one can expect me to believe that turning in a fellow brother is “cowardly snitching”, while turning in a government official is “patriotic whistleblowing”.

A person can’t advocate protesting against the government, while decrying protesting against war.

Nobody can convince me that citizens are sheep, while service members are “just following orders”.

That, my friends, is hypocrisy.

I have always supported the idea of listening, with both ears, to our military members.  After all, they are the ones who are called upon to sacrifice their lives in defense of our freedom.

I listen, with both ears, to both the angry and proud rantings of our service members.

I am confused how having no real rights to speak of can be funny… if you wear a uniform.  I have listened to the “sandwich” jokes in reference to women.  I have seen the LOLs following some ridiculous order handed down by commanders.  (Excluding the CIC, of course)  I have heard the justifications for mistreatment of Middle Eastern natives.  I have read the rants against drones, and pats on the back for special forces-styled assassinations.

And today, much to the dismay of my gag reflex, I have witnessed the originals of those passed around baseball cards.  I have been aware, for many years, that this type of thing occurred, but it is sickening to see the evidence of it.

This civilian has great respect for military personnel, but was sickened.

This civilian is angry for you, and angry with you.  I will have your back when you’re right and tell you when you’re wrong.

This civilian does not see service as super citizenship.  I will listen, attentively, to your thoughts, as long as you remember that your service does not give you the right to tell me when mine have been infringed upon.

This civilian does not chuckle at the corruption of one organization, and rally against the corruption of the other.  I am an equal opportunity criticizer.

The government has its fair share of problems, and I will be the first to admit that.

But, the military needs to get its own house in order, don’t you think?

Conduct Unbecoming of Commanders

In my last blog post (The Day after Memorial Day), I spoke of the best way to honor those who have fallen, in the line of duty.  The most fitting tribute for the dead is support for the living.  Employment, or lack thereof, was the primary focus of the piece.  I encourage any who have not read it, to do so.  Our brave men and women need our support in finding meaningful work, and I further encourage you all to take an active role, in whatever way you can.

Our men and women are experiencing a different sort of trauma of late.  Thus, we have been asking ourselves whether the military has a sexual assault problem.  I dare say we do.  An estimated 26,000 service members experienced “unwanted sexual contact” in 2012.  That is an increase of 7,000 from the previous year.  “Unwanted sexual contact” includes rape, attempted rape, and unwanted sexual touching.  Fewer than half of the reported cases involved alcohol.

One might assume that this is a female problem.  One would be dead wrong.  According to the Pentagon’s most recent annual report:  12,100 women and 13,900 men suffered some form of sexual assault.  There are approximately 1.2 million men and 200,000 women serving in our military.  This means that while female victims bear the greater proportion of assaults, this is not a gender specific issue.  The plight of male victims is greatly overlooked.

This news angered many of us.  Congressional Hearings followed.  The Joint Chiefs of Staff testified before the Armed Services Committee.  A particularly contentious debate ensued over the idea of removing prosecution from the chain of command.  Senator Kirsten Gillibrand feels that this action would make it easier for victims to report an assault.  Senator McCaskill explained the necessity of differentiating between a human resource problem and criminal activity.

But a congressional hearing wouldn’t be a congressional hearing without a dash of ignorance.

The young folks coming in to each of your services are anywhere from 17 to 22 or 23.  Gee whiz, the hormone level created by nature sets in place the possibility for these types of things to occur.  So we’ve got to be very careful how we address it on our side.  – Sen. Saxby Chambliss

Gee whiz???  What is this, high school?  Yes, we do need to be very careful how we address it.  Sexual assault is not equivalent to teenagers out behind the bleachers making out.  Young adult men, all over the globe, experience hormone increases.  They don’t become rapists.

Mr. Chairman, I’d just add a letter, a document here that was given to me from Morality in the Media. Pat Truman used to be in the Department of Justice. I knew him when he was there. He points out that, a picture here of a newsstand and an Air Force base exchange with, you know, sexually explicit magazines being sold. So, we live in a culture that’s awash in sexual activity. If it’s not sold on base, it’s right off base. There are videos and so forth that can be obtained, and it creates some problems, I think.  – Sen. Jeff Sessions

Sexually explicit magazines???  That is obviously the reason for sexual assaults.  Well…as long as you overlook the well-documented fact that rape is not about sexual gratification.  Rapists seek power and control over their victims.

Sadly, traumatized service members are victimized twice.  Once by the perpetrator, and again, by their chain of command.  A commander is responsible for the discipline and readiness of his or her troops.  Commanders have the option to stop an investigation, reduce a sentence, or even set aside a conviction.  Abuse goes unreported because no commander wants to be held accountable for a troop accused of rape.  It could affect his ability to be promoted!

Consider the case involving Lt. Gen. Susan J. Helms, who overturned a court-martial conviction of an officer for sexual assault.

Then, there is the case of Lt. Gen. Craig Franklin.  He tossed the conviction of a star fighter pilot based on information considered inadmissible by the court.

Sailor, Brian Lewis; Marine, Stacey Thompson; and specialist, BriGette McCoy are among the abused.  Unfortunately, they must rely on commanders like Lt. Col. Jeff Krusinski, who is accused of sexual assault, himself.  His actions are defended by Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark Welsh, who believes “hook up” culture is to blame.

The stories of these victims are heart wrenching and angering.  The behavior of their commanders is intolerable and unacceptable.  While senior members of all five branches claim a commitment to addressing this issue, they are strongly opposed to stripping commanders of their power.

They [commanders] are responsible for setting command climate.  – Maj. Gen. Vaughn Ary, USMC Commandant’s staff judge advocate

You want us to believe that leadership should be held accountable, and that a commander’s authority shouldn’t be restricted?

Then, do your damned job, gentlemen.  Your conduct, up to this point, has been unbecoming.

The Day after Memorial Day

Yesterday, Americans celebrated Memorial Day. Old Glory blew in the breeze.  Grill covers were removed.  Hot dogs and hamburgers were char-broiled.  Beer was consumed.  Cars and mattresses were purchased.  And those who have perished, in service to this nation, were remembered.

Those things are all fine and dandy.  But why not do something better?  The best way to honor those who have fallen is to support those who haven’t.

Perhaps,..a Call for a National Strategy on Veterans?  An all-encompassing one is needed, if we are to get our service members back on track to becoming members of civilian society.  In the coming weeks, we will discuss what the issues are.  And, there are many!  There are steps we can take, both individually and politically, to support our returning veterans.  But we, first, have to know what we are up against.

Here are startling statistics, as reported by the Center for American Progress:

** Nearly 1 in 7 homeless adults are veterans.

** 1.5 million veterans are at risk of homelessness.

** 30.29% of veterans, aged 18-24, were unemployed as of 2011.

** $31 Million of SNAP/food stamps (2008) were spent at military commissaries.

** 1.2 million veterans used mental health services in 2010.

As if those numbers are not shocking enough, Democracy Now! reports that military vets (including those wounded in service) are being kicked out, due to misconduct.  This causes them to lose medical care and benefits for life.  Young men and women, returning from the horrors of war, find themselves unable to cope.  Many have underlying health conditions, including Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  Instead of providing help, they are given a bad discharge, and alienated even from the brothers in arms that they fought and died with.

In another article, the growing epidemic of military suicide, among other things, is addressed.  Every day, in America, 18 veterans are committing suicide.  17% of Afghanistan combat vets are on psychotropic medication.  1/3 of female service members are sexually assaulted.  From Defense Secretary,Leon Panetta, “Despite the increased efforts, the increased attention, the trends continue to move in a troubling and tragic direction.”

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As a member of a military family, I am grateful for those who “support the troops”.  I am honored to be among the families who have sacrificed.  I have, in years past, humbly accepted the love and support of friends, family, and strangers.

I am, also, all too aware of the difficulties such families face.  PTSD is not an acronym to me.  The psychotropic drugs, the therapy…are all too real.

We, as a nation, accept the sacrifice…physical, spiritual, or mental…of our young men and women.  We take them from their families.  We spend millions training them for combat.  We place them in unimaginable situations, and we ask them to do unimaginable things.

Isn’t it time we do more than pay them lip service?

The most important thing we can do is provide meaningful employment opportunities.  We must stop looking at the hiring of military veterans as charity.  These men and women have any number of combat skills that translate well in the civilian world.  VetJobs is an excellent resource that we can pass along to those men and women still seeking work.

Equally important is making sure our veterans are receiving necessary medical and mental health care.  The Wounded Warrior Project is a wonderful program that brings much-needed attention to the needs of returning vets with physical and/or mental health issues.  The project provides a myriad of services for returning veterans, through donations and fundraisers.  Visit their website to see how you can help.

Finally, we must not forget the spouses and families.  They are often invisible in discussing issues concerning veteran’s affairs.  If we are to successfully integrate these warriors back into civilian society, spouses and families must also have support.  Learning to live with an entirely different person is no easy task, let me tell you.  I have found that Military OneSource provides invaluable talk therapy for spouses adjusting to their new unfamiliar circumstances.  The National Military Family Association is a wonderful resource for financial concerns.  There are opportunities to donate to both these wonderful organizations and information can be located on their websites.

Supporting our troops isn’t simply a ribbon.  It would be wonderful if it was.  Our brave men and women need, and deserve, our support.  Sure, holidays are great.  They deserve those, too.  But our country can do so much better.

Take a look at the links.  Make a contribution.  Donate your time.  Put pressure on your representatives.

That is supporting our troops.

In the News…

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.  – U. S. Constitution, First Amendment

The past few weeks have been interesting, to say the least.  For me, they have been thought-provoking.  Not being a professional journalist, I admit to only a cursory knowledge of protocol concerning the media and national security.  Current events have cured me of that.

The Associated Press and Fox News scandals are huge.  This is not like Umbrella-gate, which was ridiculous.  Even the IRS intrusion takes a back seat to this debacle.  The intrusion into the rights of the media to gather and report important information should concern us all.  Not because we finally have some conspiracy to pin on Obama, but because it is a possible infringement of rights.

Whenever there is a clash between an administration and the media, “national security” is at stake.  While national security has no official definition, we believe it to mean the protection and safety of our citizens and our secrets.  This safety is secured through economic, political, diplomatic, and military power.  In essence, each administration is allowed the freedom to determine what places “it” at risk.

So, let’s take on the Fox scandal first.  The national security in this case involved North Korea, and its plan to respond to U.N. sanctions with more nuclear tests.  The CIA, allegedly, learned this information from a source within North Korea.  James Rosen’s (Fox News contributor) story was reported online the same day that the top-secret report was revealed to a small group within the intelligence community.  Stephen Jin-Woo Kim, a government advisor, was among that small group.  The FBI used security badge data, phone records, and email exchanges to tie the two men together.  The pair spoke/met on several occasions, even going so far as to use code names.  Kim was charged, in 2010, with disclosing national defense information.  Rosen, while not charged, has been labeled a “co-conspirator”.

This case is disturbing.  While I am no fan of Fox news, the labeling of Rosen as a co-conspirator is unacceptable.   The nature of a reporter’s job is to uncover information (whether a current administration likes it or not) and report it.  Rosen conspired to do nothing, but his job.  My issue here is with the administration.  When a trusted advisor chose to leak top-secret information, the Justice department should have dealt solely with him.  Rosen was well within his rights, as a reporter, to “solicit” information.  The ownership belongs to Kim.  My issue is not so much the investigation, but the attack on Rosen for reporting the news provided to him.

The AP story is a little more complex.  With the help of foreign intelligence agencies, an undercover informant infiltrated the leadership of al-Qaeda. “The spy in question infiltrated AQAP, retrieved its latest non-metalic underwear bomb and delivered it to U.S. authorities”.  Our government had hoped to be led to Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri, the bomb’s creator.  Officials claimed that the opportunity was destroyed and the informant was compromised when the story of the foiled plot was reported.  There are reports that AP sat on the story, for days, at the request of the CIA.  Once given clearance, the story ran.

This case disturbs me, as well, but for an entirely different reason.  For me, it is not open and shut.  True, the AP story never revealed the name of the informant, like Cheney’s office outed Valerie Plame.  But, it is possible that an opportunity to locate and/or capture al-Asiri was lost.  It appears as though John Brennan’s (then counter-terrorism advisor) “inside control” comments propelled the story and revealed the more intimate details of the plot.  If security was at risk, an explanation of how should have been provided, and the source of the leak addressed.

I am bothered that the MSM has become a way to turn a profit, making whistleblowers like Julian Assange necessary.  Security leaks are not new, and in fact, have become quite necessary.  Without unofficial accounts, we might be woefully uninformed, as conventional media has become more sensationalism than facts.  However, I am uncomfortable with the surveillance of media, by any administration.  I am equally uncomfortable with the public’s feeling of entitlement where news is concerned.  Around the clock news has encouraged this mentality.

This is a time to question.  Do we have a right to know all?  And, if we do, how soon should we learn it?  What constitutes a national security threat?  And, in cases where applicable, should a member of the press be held accountable for taking what was given?  How far are we willing to go in the name of fighting terrorism?  What is an appropriate balance between security and liberty?

Any administration using national security as justification for surveillance warrants investigation.  In the wake of 9/11, fear introduced us to warrantless wire taps, restrictions of individual rights, and unconstitutional imprisonment.  Rights of the people vs national security is a delicate balance.  We expect our rights to be uncontested.  Yet, we expect our government to keep us as safe.

Keeping our citizens safe is not an implied duty.  Our constitution gives that power to the government.  That being said, our constitution gives us power, as well.  The actions of the last two administrations set a dangerous precedent moving forward.  We have accepted infringement too many times in the past, without question, because we were afraid.   So, we must question.

And, we must DEMAND answers.

Evergreen Up Late: No, You’re Chicken!

MORE THAN 3,000 additional people have been killed by guns in this country since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

Yet gun NUTS continue to block any kind of legislation that could even potentially curb proliferation. Yes, I said NUTS. Self-proclaimed ‘Patriots’ who refuse any and all sensible bills that just might possibly restrict any access to any gun by anybody. Stay with me here. This may not be the place for a Freudian analysis of what makes ‘gun lovers’ tick, but a few assertions are in order.

Responsible guns owners support universal background checks.
Hell, the NRA used to support universal background checks until it looked like it might actually become a law. Why they changed their position is most perplexing. Was it an inherent NEED to oppose Obama on EVERYTHING? Perhaps just Ye Olde Fashioned Paranoia?

Here is a brief history of the need for guns in America!

But seriously, gun control advocates have no issue with guns for hunting and self-protection. But Military weaponry should be limited to Military use. An automatic rifle will not help in the hunting of a Moose or Squirrel.

I’m no gun lover, but I’m also not a gun hater. To me it’s just a tool. I have relatives who enjoy hunting and friends who enjoy target practice. And That’s Fine. But if you want a machine designed solely to mow down people like grass, well sir, I have a problem with that. There is no sport that requires such mega-cannisters of bullets. Using such weapons on wildlife classified as ‘Game’ is … well it’s just not sporting, is it?

One nice little feature of the US Constitution is that the 2nd Amendment (like all of the others) can be re-interpreted by the Supreme Court to fit the times. It is NOT the 2nd Commandment. But it does look like guns are, in fact, being idolized in this country in ways that are detrimental to our future. To my mind, at least. The Assault Weapons Ban bill that was ON THE BOOKS for a decade, but allowed to expire by GW Bush, is somehow now considered too radical to even consider in the Senate? The Country hasn’t gone Radical Left, the Congressmen who are blocking it have either gone Radical Right or sold their souls to the NRA.

You may ask, “And what would you know, you tree-hugging liberal?”
First: Trees are good, M’kay?
Second: Psst, I OWN a .22 rifle. My father was a cop. I grew up with a gun in the house.

That’s what I know.

As for those who feel they must hoard a cache of guns and are AFRAID that the Gub’mint is gonna take them all away? You’ve got to know: You’re not a ‘Patriot.’ You’ve got to know: You’re Chicken.

May you always be in tune with The Music of the Spheres.