It make me wonder

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I’m not saying that correlation equals causation or anything, but it does cause me to wonder… upon posting this image on Facebook, the people I knew in high school who didn’t attend upper level courses began to rail against me in defense of those who carry firearms, and people I knew in college who did attend upper level courses and graduated held the opposite opinion, that firearms tended to cause more problems than they solved.

I wonder what that says about education and the desirability of higher education.

-M

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It make me wonder

Planned Parenthood v NRA

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Oh, the things I see on the pages of conservatives I’m friends with on Facebook. I’ll be the first to admit that I troll their walls as a means of finding things to write about. There, I said it. No shame, but neither am I proud.

Rather than touching on this for factual clarity, I want to point out something that this freaky meme has backwards: diction.

It has long been a joke between my twin sister and I that the “author uses diction.” This should be obvious to anyone who has ever been through high school English class, but sometimes fails to sink in. Word choice is one of the most important things in our society from books to movies to games. See the video I link to at the end for more on that – it’s a fun watch and very informative.

Here, whoever made up this little image that was, doubtlessly, shared all around Facebook, implies that it is wrong that stricter gun control tries to go into effect in the wake of 90 deaths; while it is equally wrong that Planned Parenthood gets federal funding for 3000 murders each year.

Let’s roll back right there. First off, we don’t “lose” people to gun violence. People are taken from the human race by other people with guns, many of whom are probably unable to understand what they’ve done on an empathic level. Most of these “losses” are murder.

Whereas Planned Parenthood doesn’t “murder” 3000 babies every day. There are approximately 3000 abortions in America each day and in excess of 100,000 world wide in the same span. These aren’t murder, but are an informed decision on the part of a woman and a doctor that impregnation does not a child make.

I’m not sorry; a fetus isn’t a child; it’s potential that can bless or ruin a person or family and it’s their choice, not yours, whether or not that potential is met. I’m not sorry you’re hurt over the NRA taking slag for the last year of shootings. I am tired of watching my President (almost) in tears because there has been a shooting almost every day for the last year and a half. I’m tired of the killings and the damned morons cradling a gun in one hand and their limp, impotent life in the other that I call countrymen.

So let’s back off of Planned Parenthood and worry about the real problem: people with guns who think using their guns to get their way is a good idea.

Use your words.

Until next time,

-M

Planned Parenthood v NRA

Can You Put A Price On Home Defense?

I live in South Florida.

To clarify, I live in one of those 50 or so artificial suburbs in South Florida that have sprouted up around the Miami and Fort Lauderdale areas over the last half century or so. There are some constants about these places.

  1. There are more or less distinct neighborhoods for different people. Don’t ask me to make sense of this, it just is and I don’t claim to understand the reasoning behind segmenting people like this outside simple irrational racism.
  2. Most people are safe most of the time. (This is true everywhere in America except New Las Vegas – no one wallet is safe in Vegas).
  3. People can be incredible stupid for the worst reasons.

Where I live is safe. We’re just off US 441 in a clump of apartments behind the commercial part of the road.

My roommate owns three firearms.

Before we moved in together, he owned one firearm, so he claims. He told me he owned an AK-47 type automatic rifle that fired 7.62mm rounds. I don’t care if he was talking a big game or not, that doesn’t matter. Upon moving in, he seemed to have given away or sold the Kalashnikov and bought a 9mm semi-automatic pistol.

This pistol can hold 15 bullets (he loads hollow points because normal bullets don’t pack enough punch, so he says) and will hold one additional round in the chamber bringing the total bullets that can be fired without reloading to 16.

He keeps this firearm loaded, including that extra bullet, under his bed at night.

Upon finding a defect in this firearm, he had to send it to the factory to be repaired. It’s amazing that firearms have lifetime warranties, but cars don’t. You’d think cars and computers, being such important tools to keep the economy going, would have more care taken of them. Before sending the first gun away, he bought another out of fear of not having one in the house to defend himself.

This second firearm, also a 9mm semi-automatic, holds 8 bullets plus one in the chamber. My roommate keeps this loaded, along with his first, repaired, gun, under his bed.

Over the holidays this year, I went out of town. I had a fun with with my friends in Central Florida and talked everything from season’s greetings to politics with them in that amicable way that friends do. Then I get a text message coupled with a picture from my roommate.

“Hey, bro. Look what I bought!”

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Oh. Your. Zombie. God. If there is a God or gods in this world, they aren’t looking out for little old me. There it is, he bought a third – THIRD! – firearm. A gorram third!

I asked him if he could afford a shotgun and still pay his rent. He asked me if I could really put a price on home defense.

Yes. Yes I can you overgrown man-child.

Point: you are a white male in a “nice” part of town away from prying eyes. Point: you don’t work in law enforcement, have ever served the military or are in any position requiring a gun. Point: you openly told me you wanted to go to the Middle East and start shooting people at random because you’re scared of the big, bad not white people coming to take your guns away and murder-rape-kill your whole family.

What world do I live in that this is OK? What world do I live in that I’d rather live in the deepest of the Deep, Bible-Beating South than live with you?

I won’t let my nephews or my niece come to my home because I’m worried my roommate left his guns loaded. I don’t like having friends or family over when he’s around because he insists on carrying a firearm everywhere he goes like one of those mentally deficient men who took over a wildlife refuge in Oregon to break their poaching buddy out of jail. I put home defense in South Florida about as high on my list of priorities as a high school student worries about homework.

I lock the door when I go out. That’s about all I need, and that’ll dissuade most people looking for an easy place to hit. I was more worried about the RA in my hall in college finding liquor in my room than I am about someone robbing me (not that I wasn’t old enough, but liquor was against the severely out-dated campus rules of conduct c.1980).

Guns don’t solve problems, guns make problems. I want to move the moment my lease is up. Here’s to me finding a job in some other part of the country and to finding a place to live once I get there.

Until next time,

-M

Can You Put A Price On Home Defense?

The Future – Our Future

I normally don’t have much love for New York (save some of the people that live there), but this week, two major New York papers have made huge statements about gun control. When the opposition has no better ideas (or no ideas at all besides Mr. Trump insisting that Muslims be banned from entering America; which is a bad idea all around), maybe it’s time to change the status quo.

The world is changing, our laws and our society must change with it; we can no longer be held back by the rule of the past and the aging generations. Look to them for wisdom and hard-earned sense, sure, but don’t let people with no stake in the future make decisions for the future.

The future belongs to the young – for better or worse. We’re going to be here, and we deserve the chance to shuck off old ways of thinking and look toward tomorrow.

Until next time,

-M

The Future – Our Future

Terror

“Terror! A man can face known danger. But the unknown frightens him.” –Robert A. Heinlein

I have to ask a question. What makes the perfect television rating? How many TV news stations covered the weather in sunny Miami, Florida yesterday? Not many I imagine. But you couldn’t miss the news about the terrorist attack in California yesterday – the news was swimming in a lack of information until almost midnight west coast time.

And, yes; I called the attack yesterday an act of terrorism. But what is terrorism? It’s when those evil Muslims attack God-loving Christians, isn’t it? Well, if you watch Fox News you might think so. In the reality we live in, acts of terrorism are defined by the stage on which they are set and the effect that comes from them.

In this case, the stage was a civilian setting: a center for the developmentally disabled in California. The effect was… nothing.

But I thought you just said terrorism was defined by the effect. What gives?

If the shooters were foreigners, or if they had affiliations with protest groups in America, this would be an open and shut case – public opinion would be against them… somehow. But they were Americans who bought their guns legally and had, as some early stories say, been planning this attack.

What was the response? “Our thoughts and prayers are with the families…”

Ad nauseum.

For better or worse, the New York Daily News has the one response I respect. “God isn’t fixing this,” with images of GOP tweets about their condolences.

I’m not saying this isn’t a nice gesture. Even President Obama’s official press channels have quoted him saying that his prayers are with the people of San Bernardino. But he, and other Democrats, went on to say that these acts of terrorism, homegrown and with legally obtained weapons, are not acceptable.

If I’ve made any point at all here, it is that our politicians should be beholden to us. If the only politicians with affiliations with the Democratic party are willing to take a stand against attacks on American citizens, maybe we should take a good, long look at the GOP and conservatism to find out what their plan is; so far, it looks like prayer is on the table.

As for me: I don’t want prayer. It helps the faithful make sense of the world, but it doesn’t do anything for me, and it sure as frak doesn’t do anything for the victims of the more than 300 shootings this year alone.

Please, call your representatives, email, write letters. Tell them we need better controls in place. Shootings like this, attacks like this, should not be so easy. They should not take place every week, every day! This is America and I’m scared to drive to work because I might get shot on Interstate 95.

Something is foul in America, and it starts with the Second Amendment.

-M

Terror