Voter ID and 2nd Amendment Rights-NRA and ALEC Must Take a Side

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) represents the various corporations across the country. This is a group with major ties to the Koch brothers. These are the people who helped Arizona Senate President Russell Pearce write and enact the infamous SB1070 or “Show me your papers” law in Arizona. They meet on a regular basis, corporate lobbyists and usually hard-core Republican state and federal lawmakers to come up with laws that support the right wing but mostly corporate agenda. It was ALEC that pushed the “Stand Your Ground” laws beginning in Florida and is now in over half the states in the Union. It is ALEC that’s in league with the National Rifle Association who lobby for gun manufacturers that pushed “Stand Your Ground” as a means to pump up sales of weapons and ammunition.

It’s also ALEC that has sponsored most of the Voter ID laws across the country. ID laws that conservatively can impact the voting rights of over 5 million United States Citizens who will be unable to get the proper photo ID’s the law demands, due to inability to get a birth certificate or not having the money to get the limited acceptable ID’s required. This is the law that ALEC, at the bequest of the Koch brothers and GOP hope will suppress enough votes to throw the election to the Republicans in November, even though they now admit there is no “voter fraud” to speak of out there to justify such a draconian approach and infringement of American freedoms.

If ALEC, working for the NRA and GOP are so convinced that birth certificates to get valid picture ID’s is needed to insure that only US citizens are voting, then it’s only logical that since the 2nd Amendment only applies to US citizens, the same requirement should be in place to make sure that only verified US citizens are purchasing guns and ammunition in this country. Afterall, we don’t need any foreigners in the country out there buying guns to threaten and take over the country. I have as much evidence of that happening, possibly even more, than they have that foreigners are voting to throw off the election.

So if a State has, or plans to enact any legislation demanding proof of US citizenship via a photo ID, then there should be accompanied with legislation that only the same ID can be used to purchase any guns or ammunition. The purchases must be made in person, the buyer must register as the voters are and gun ownership can be removed (caged) if there is evidence that something is wrong. For example, if Florida takes hundreds of thousands of registered voters off their rolls, those same people also lose their guns at the same time, and those who caged those voters need to go out to each and every home to take possession.

Hey, it’s all about American Freedom. So NRA, if you back Voter ID’s then you must also back the same ID’s be used before anyone can exercise their 2nd Amendment rights. I see it as a good compromise, a win/win. Or you can tell your ALEC partners in crime to back off this suppression of a constitutional right that is as important, if not more so, than the 2nd.

Is Sheldon Adelson really Hyman Roth Incarnate?

Sheldon Adelson

Hyman Roth

Alright, I’ll admit it, with my Italian background, two of my favorite movies are The Godfather and Godfather Part 2 (we won’t talk about part 3). One of the central characters in Godfather Part 2 was Hyman Roth. The Roth character was based on real life gangster Meyer Lansky. Lansky was a Jewish underworld mobster who was in league with Charles “Lucky” Luciano and helped “Murder Incorporated” grow into the mafia syndicate as their accountant. Meyer was part of the “Jewish Mafia” and developed a gambling empire from Saratoga, New York to Miami to Council Bluffs to Las Vegas. He also oversaw gambling in Cuba.

The Hyman Roth character was a Jewish Investor and associate of Vito Corleone and later his son Michael Corleone. Hyman’s good friend, Moe Greene “invented” Las Vegas and became a millionaire from the gambling operations there, in Miami and Cuba. Hyman never forgave Michael Corleone for killing Moe Greene so he used Michael’s brother Fredo to set Michael up for assassination. It’s a good movie and if you never watched it, go rent it and see if you can pick up the parallels to Sheldon Adelson.

Now there is nothing out there that I’m aware of showing that Sheldon has arranged any assassinations of any underworld crime bosses out of revenge. However, there are some interesting things to note here. Sheldon is big into gambling. Very big. It’s made him a billionaire. He has casinos in Las Vegas and a real profitable one in Macau China. In March, 2012 ABC News did an expose on the operation. “Watchdog: Mob Ties at Chinese Casinos Owned by US Firms?” Here’s the link if you’re interested:

It speaks of violent Chinese underworld mob bosses, American Corporations and their ties to Sheldon Adelson who at the time was Newt Gingrich’s major financial backer. Adelson denies any wrong doing and states that the Federal case is built “on a foundation of lies.” But the investigation by the Feds and by investigative reporters (real ones, not the drones from Rupert Murdoch and FOX) continue. Here is a recent post:

Sheldon is in hot water and one can only speculate his interest in this year’s presidential campaign. He once backed Newt Gingrich and now fully back Mitt Romney. Is it possible that Sheldon wants more friendly investigators at the Department of Justice? Adelson has said he’s willing to spend up to $100,000,000.00 to defeat President Obama. Since he’s worth by some estimates of around $50,000,000,000.00 he can afford it. His Macau operations brings home billions. But if there is something to the allegations, then Sheldon would think that a $100,000.000.00 is a small price to get the Feds off your back. Poor Hyman wasn’t so lucky. The Feds were after him and Israel wouldn’t let him return there due to his underworld connections. Upon his return to Miami, Michael Corleone’s hitman got him at the Airport. I don’t think Sheldon has to worry about that. However, who really knows.

Anyhow, the one fact that intrigues me about this man who is so interested in American politics and the political process of the country he is a citizen of is that he’s not so much the American you would think of. Although he served in our Armed Forces, unlike his protégé Mitt Romney, Sheldon is on record saying that he would have preferred to have served in, and worn the Israeli Defense Forces’ uniform.

Watch this link about the “American” who is one of Mitt Romney’s biggest backer:

Even though Hyman wasn’t allowed to avoid American Justice by fleeing to Israel as “a returning Jew” Sheldon might still want to consider that option if the Department of Justice files criminal charges against him. Israel would love to have access to his billions and their progressive tax code. This apparent, underworld gambling casino mobster would make a great new character if there was to ever be a Godfather 4. But hey, at least Hyman made sure everyone got a piece of his birthday cake. Sheldon would never be that generous to anyone who couldn’t help him personally.

Can Mitt Romney’s Loose Lips Sink Our Ship of State?

When the founders created the role of President, they built into that position the focal point of our nation’s foreign policy. The president, with the secretary of State approved by Congress, would set the tone of all foreign policy. This policy involves of course our relationships with other nations, both militarily, but also economically. So what does Mitt Romney bring to the table?

He is quick to try to convince the nations that the world has less respect for our country because of her current president. This of course runs counter to all polling in the world and is only supported by FOX polling of resident right-wing nut jobs in this country speaking for those outside the country. Afterall, we’re Americans, we speak for everybody. But I digress.

Let’s look at Military Policy. It’s true that President Obama never wore the uniform before taking on the role of Commander-in-Chief. He was never drafted. Of course, he was barely a teen when the draft ended and was only 14 with the Vietnam War ended. So let’s look at Mitt Romney. As a college student he supported the Vietnam War. In fact, he protested anti-war rallies. He was pro-draft, yet he took advantaged of being a Mormon and was deferred from the draft so he could do missionary work in the South of France. None of his five sons have signed up for service in the two wars that Mitt Romney supported (Iraq and Afghanistan) because they were serving a higher calling, helping their father become president for Pete’s sake.

Mitt Romney just today, as a candidate, violated long-standing US policy regarding military posturing in Iran by saying he would support a unilateral Israeli attack on Iran and that war was on the table. Not even George W Bush was that crazy. He later stepped it back when confronted. Much like most of his tough war talk, he later takes it back or re-defines it. Mitt’s problem with military policy is that he has the “loose lips” that can sink the ship of the State of US Diplomacy. What is really interesting about Mitt’s stance with Iran is that there are reports that he has financial dealings, (most likely indirect to avoid being found in violation of US sanctions against Iran) from which he is making more money from Iranian Oil.

As our current Commander-in-Chief, President Obama has removed us from Iraq and is in the process of removing our presence from Afghanistan. When Libya erupted, he worked with NATO to assist the rebels who eventually overthrew and killed Qadhafi and not a single US casuality occurred. Further, using Seal Team 6, the president has killed Somali Pirates holding an US citizen hostage and of course Osama bin Laden in the middle of Pakistan. He has also used military drone attacks to kill off Al Qaeda leadership. The president has demonstrated the proper respect and use of our military forces. The only thing Mitt has done regarding the military has been making money off of various military contract.

Speak softly and carry a big stick goes back to Republican Teddy Roosevelt, has been used by most subsequent presidents in terms of military foreign policy and works best today. Mitt talks loudly but has no balls to make the tough real life decision a Commander-in-Chief of the largest most powerful military force in the World must have.

Now economics. As the record clearly shows, Mitt Romney pioneered at Bain the idea of outsourcing American jobs to foreign soil to improve the corporate profit margins. This works well for the foreign workforce and corporate profits at home, but does little for the working people in this country and their buying power. No jobs, no disposable income, no buying power, deeper recession. Mitt agrees with current laws that continues to give tax breaks to US corporations who outsource work to other nations yet is opposed to reversing it where tax credits would be given to corporations bringing the jobs back and taxing those who outsource the jobs. Countries like China and India would do very well under a Romney world economic plan, but at what cost to Americans.

The interesting thing is, President Obama with the exception of changing the outsourcing tax codes has continued the Reagan, Clinton and Bush foreign “Free Trade” policies that have helped the other nations at our economic disadvantaged. Though not as bad it would be nice to see a stronger position of seeing to our own economic survival. Romney would make it worse. Would divert more resource out of country for the corporate bottom line. Trade agreements with other countries are important but should be geared towards the best interests of the American people if you are the President and Corporations are not American People. Let the foreign leaders negotiate for their people while we negotiate for our own and come to mutually satisfying compromise. Let’s not sell everything to other countries to help a few corporate CEO’s.

Mitt’s first foreign trip at prospective Republican nominee hasn’t been all that the GOP would hope for the man they hope to have in office to represent America to the world. He insulted the Brits regarding their Olympic games, he slipped up egregiously regarding US military options regarding Iran while in Israel, not to mention taking a very tactless photo-op on the Western Wall on Tisha b’Av, one of the most holiest Jewish days commemorating the destruction of the Temple, a day where Jews mourn and fast. God only knows what childish, uninformed tactless thing he will do in Poland. Will he speak about the barbwire at Auschwitz being “the right height”? When you represent this nation, you don’t insult the people you are visiting in their own countries. A president is by definition a diplomat. The highest diplomat our nation has. Mitt has shown he is not up to that challenge.

When White Supremacists Unite, Watch Out

Prior to civil rights, though people were increasingly less tolerant, White Supremacists had no fears being out in the open. In a country of “Separate but Equal”, Segregation being the norm, these people had no problems going out in the open, expressing their views. Sadly, these views were shared by a significant portion of the country. The Ku Klux Klan were able to march in full white sheet regalia in Washington DC. At that time, their membership was estimated to be well over a million, in a country where few people stood up against lynchings, church bombings and the like.

Slowly in the 1950’s things started to change. The move to grant full civil rights was beginning to take hold. It started with Harry Truman desegregating the armed forces, followed by Dwight Eisenhower ordering busing, and culminated in the Civil Rights Act signed by Lyndon Johnson. John Kennedy tried to get it done, but couldn’t get it through Congress made up of Dixiecrats and it took Texan Johnson, using the memory of the martyred president to get it passed. When he signed it, he acknowledged that the Democratic Party would lose the South for a Generation. He was right. Many in the South left the Democratic Party to join the Republican Party. Richard Nixon created his “Southern Strategy” that he used to take the White House in 1968 and this has been a mainstay of GOP politics for much longer than a single generation.

However,  during this time the racists began to go underground. Oh, they were still there, people knew of their existence, but they kept in the shadows. They knew the vast majority of the country had outgrown them and they became part of the counterculture.

Now, they are coming back. Many have no problems showing themselves, demanding to be part of the government with support of more people than many thought possible in this day, in this country. Did it have to do with the country electing its first Black President? That certainly played a role. Racists are by nature angry people needing something to vent their anger at. President Obama fills that role for them.

The picture at the top is JT Ready. He’s famous in Arizona. I’ve spoken of him before. He was in the Marines, Court martialed twice, and received a bad conduct discharge from the Corps. But in Arizona he found a calling. With the help of the Arizona Republican Party, controlled by the Arizona Tea Party coalition that convinced Arizonans that all their problems could be traced to people across the border, Ready became a big name in patrolling the border and dealing with those little brown people taking jobs, littering the desert, or whatever propaganda they could come up with. With the help of Senate President Russell Pearce with his SB1070 and Governor Jan Brewer seeing headless bodies in the desert, Ready was making a name for himself. He was running for Sheriff in Pinal County. That ended when Ready murdered his girlfriend, her daughter and granddaughter and the daughter’s fiance before killing himself. Ready is gone, but his racism remains vibrant in Arizona.

You would think that it’s a no brainer figuring who the White Supremacists are and what they stand for. If you do, then you are just like George Bush not understanding the difference between Shiite and Sunni Muslims in Iraq. White Supremacists are varied, have differing goals, differing politics, differing tolerances and actually only share one thing, extreme violent anger and hatred.

You have the Ku Klux Klan, the Aryan Brotherhood, Skinheads, Peckerwoods, White Pride Independents, the factions are varied. Many are in competition with one another. It’s interesting to note that Aryan Brotherhood are actually tolerant of other races to a point, and will deal with them, to a point, and tend to do drugs like heroin and meth. Skinheads are absolutely opposed to drugs and any association with any minority group. Aryan Brotherhood are more of a traditional outlaw gang while Skinheads are more of a political movement. Again, the only thing these groups have in common is violence towards minorities and those in their groups who don’t live up to their code.

Though the KKK are still an influence and of course come from the deep south, it is interesting to know that the Aryan Brotherhood and Skinhead groups mostly came from California. Aryan Brotherhood began in California around 1973 and moved to Arizona around 1979. Between these two states, the gangs are growing chapters across the nation. It’s interesting to learn that the Georgia Chapter of the Aryan Brotherhood was started by AB members from Arizona. Word is that Arizonan AB members are a key factor in starting many new chapters across the country. Go figure.

As I mentioned earlier, the various Skinhead groups are the fastest growing White Supremacists out there and they tend to be more of a political movement than a gang movement. They see this country as being only for the Whites, no tolerance for minorities. They do follow the Nazi doctrine to the letter. If they were to be part of any mainstream political party to enact their goals, odds are it would be the Tea Party Faction of the Republican Party.

Don’t be surprised. Besides, these people have been coming out of the woodwork more and more in recent years. They’re mainstreaming, knowing that to change the system, you must become part of the system. It’s classic. JT Ready was a Neo-Nazi skinhead who could have become Sheriff in Pinal County. Other “secret” racists, but clearly racists none-the-less are already in government. It includes Arizona and the National level. You know them by their rhetoric, their acts and their demeanor. If our country continues to just shrug it’s shoulders to these people and allow them to continue to mainstream, they will become more open and racist in their views.

Currently, the GOP is catering to the racist side of the Tea Party Coalition. I’m not saying that all Tea Party members are skinheads, Aryan Brotherhood, or simply racist. But if those people were to be in a party, it would be the Tea Party and they appear to be calling the shots.

White Supremacists have always been out there and they are involved in everything including law enforcement. They are getting more and more comfortable in not only expressing their views, but in trying to legislate those views. Voter suppression, Laws that target people based on race, cutting of aid to groups that cater to minorities, etc. The only way to stop this, is to call it out when you see it. It’s time to embarrass the White Supremacists back to their dark holes where they had been hiding since the 1960’s. Otherwise, they will unite and this country will lose what little humanity it has left.

Is Louie Gohmert Performance Art?

Every time his name is mentioned, every time he’s quoted, every time he’s on the radio or television I have to keep asking myself, has Saturday Night Live gone Prime Time? Heaven forbid that Michele Bachmann comes to the realization that Marcus is gay and ends up hooking up with this Gomer, that could signal the end times.

Our first major encounter with Goober was his famous “terror babies” rant while on a flight. In his deluded mind, he figures that a diabolical plan involving terrorists sending pregnant women into the US to birth their America-hating spawns. The mothers and their kids then return home where, the congressman says, the children “could be raised and coddled as future terrorists”— and later, “twenty, thirty years down the road, they can be sent in to help destroy our way of life.” When I first heard this, I wondered if it wasn’t time to implement a psychological evaluation for House members before they could serve. But sadly with the Tea Party caucus that Gopher is apart of, if they were all expelled due to their paranoia, the House may never be able to get a quorum for any action. I later learned this House has been so ineffective in legislating this term that it doesn’t really matter if they ever get a quorum.

Louie Louie  has been a recent vocal supporter of Michele Bachmann and her paranoid rants about Huma Abedin and Rep Keith Ellison of being plants from the Muslim Brotherhood. He and fellow paranoid delusional bat shit crazies Rep Trent Franks,  Rep Thomas Rooney and Rep Lynn Westmoreland joined in the crazy train demonstrating more that there is a need for a House Psychiatrist on call when these psychotic episodes reach a peak.

And most recently, Looney G has insulted the victims of Aurora by saying “We’ve told God ‘we don’t want him around” in response to the shooting. Adding that the country’s move away from its “Judeo-Christian beliefs” was responsible
for God withdrawing his “protective hand” from the country. Of course it had nothing to do with lax gun control laws that allow mentally disturbed people to purchase unneeded Assault Rifles and 6000 rounds of ammunition on the internet without a single check by anyone. Hell, the laws are so lax, Gohmert could even get a gun and ammo. Maybe ATF should be keeping an eye on this nut. He does seem to fit the profile. Hell, I think he was also a character in Deliverance.

Is Gohmert insane? Possibly. Is he stupid? Well, stupid is as stupid does. Problem is he’s emblematic of the type of Tea Party Slime that voter apathy gave us in 2010 so it’s the country’s insanity and stupidity that continue to give us insensitive, unrealistic, pathetic crazy nut jobs like Gohmert, Bachmann, Franks, Rooney and Westmoreland in the House to disgrace our nation. No, God hasn’t abandoned this country at all. I don’t think God really give a rat’s ass about the complexity of religious doctrine or lack of faith in this country. At least no more than Allah or Jehovah or Yahwey. However, as long as the voters allow idiots like these to represent us in DC, then it’s clear that we’ve told “Sanity” we don’t want him around.

Have we become more violent or just dumber?

It’s still amazes me to hear people call in on radio shows talk about how much better it would have been in Aurora, (or any other site in this country where a mass murder involving an assault rifle) if the people there were also armed with the same weaponry. I grew up in the 1960’s and 1970’s to the cry’s of people saying that television and the movies were too violent and would result in violent people, then in the 1980’s and 1990’s it was video games making people more violent. Well, I really don’t believe that violence on television, movies, or video games necessarily have a major effect on the violence of a culture. I don’t discount it completely, but I think the problem is actually simpler than that. Television, movies and video games are making people more stupid. They don’t seem to realize that in the real world, those with guns tend to fire back at you. Unless you are very calm, well-trained and of the mind to take another life, you will be shot and possibly killed, not the attacker who already is of the mind to take lives. That’s reality, that’s what the military and police train for on a regular basis. Watching television or playing video games don’t properly train you or prepare you for a real fire fight.

Military Boot camp is designed to essentially “brainwash” people into being able to go against their nature and be able to devalue human life to make them more effective killing machines. The only lives that matter are those in your unit, those outside aren’t to be considered human. Sadly, one of the reasons so many come back from war with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome is because of the inability to accept what they have done in war, that they have taken human life. It’s not as easy as it would appear in the movies, on television or on a video game. And you cannot regenerate when you are shot, there is no reset, you can’t play again. And, being shot is painful and results in real blood.

So the NRA would like a place where everyone is armed because the more armed people out there, the less the possibility of shots being fired at you. Well, the picture above is of Somalia. Just about everyone there is armed with high-capacity assault rifles. Rifles provided by the gun manufacturers for whom the NRA lobby for. Is this really what we want? It is what the NRA’s leadership wants because that’s how they make money. Off the deaths of innocent people from the most effective instruments of close quarter mass destruction available.

Most responsible gun owners, to include those with military and/or law enforcement experience know that the answer is better gun control laws. In fact a majority of rank and file NRA membership support better gun control laws. They know that laws designed to keep assault rifles, high-capacity magazines, etc. out of the hands of criminals and mentally disturb is not taking all the guns away from law-abiding people. It’s making the streets safer by keeping those weapons out of the hands of people so inclined to take these weapons into a theatre, or school, or shopping center. Someone so inclined to do that represents a danger to the community and responsible gun owners recognize this and agree it must be regulated. They also know that vigilante justice by untrained, untried, inexperienced, but armed cherubs will only make matters worse in a fire fight.

More guns on the streets do not make the streets safer, it would only tend to make us more like Somalia. The only thing it would accomplish is more gun and ammunition sales and profits to the people Wayne LaPierre represents. Not rank and file gun owners, but the manufacturers who want you to buy more of their product.

NRA’s Wayne LaPierre, Large Barrel, Small Rod

Paranoid or just a con man trying to convince people that President Obama is trying to take guns away from everyone. He’s not and if he wanted to, he couldn’t under Federal Law and Supreme Court Rulings. Any change of the Constitution requires super majority actions in the Senate and State Legislatures. But no matter, the fear this dweeb instills in the gullible people of this country rakes in the profits for gun and ammunition manufacturers while making the streets more unsafe. Self fulfilling prophecy  Wayne?

False Equivalence = Lie of the Year

I “borrowed” the above image from Politifact to demonstrate this rant. It is in response to something a pro-NRA guy sent to me in response to my anti-NRA and pro-gun regulation posts on Twitter and I suppose this Blog over the past few days. He cited an NRA myth about how gun control leads to mass murder. Here’s the link to what he sent me:

I of course responded the only way I could to get the attention of this gentleman. I called this for what it is, a False Equivalence and called him an idiot for bringing it up. Our conversation did not end on a happy note. This exchange also reminded me of what Samuel Wurzelbacher, more commonly known as “Joe the Plumber” who’s running for Congress cited in June. It was in fact the same talking point from the NRA of how regimes take guns away from their citizens then annihilate them ie The Soviet Union, Turkey, Nazi Germany, China, Guatemala, Uganda, Cambodia. Impressive list of heinous acts, but still sorry to say, a False Equivalence.

For those who don’t know, a False Equivalence is “a logical fallacy which describes a situation where there is a logical and apparent equivalence, but when in fact there is none.”

So, what’s the problem here. First of all and the most obvious is that no one in the government in this nation is proposing or for my knowledge have ever proposed taking “all the guns away.” There have been calls from the Brady Campaign To Prevent Gun Violence for better written, and enforced gun control laws designed to keep the guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally insane. Not a total ban of guns at all. There have also been calls for bans on Assault Rifles. In fact, we once had one in existence, but it expired. But again, what need does a law-abiding, sane, rational man have for an assault rifle?

So the first part of the argument is false, now to the second. What happened when these regimes “took the guns away”? Well, there is a difference between those regimes and our current government. I say current government because there are many on the right I fear would like to change this. Currently, our government does not stifle free speech, party affiliation, has no discrimination against any persons based on religion, race, sexual orientation, disability, etc. At least on paper as of today, our government is not out to eliminate those they do not like with extreme prejudice like the Communists, Nazis, etc.

So, no one is asking to take the guns away, just keep them from those inclined to use them in a harmful way to innocent people and the government is not predisposed to kill off in huge numbers those they do not tolerate. Our current government I caution to add.

So to emphasize my point in my Twitter exchange earlier today to that gentleman or anyone wanting to cite that gun control leads to mass murder. You’re idiots

Picture of NRA Gun Rights

Above for those of you who don’t know, this is a picture of JT Ready on the left with Former Arizona Senate President Russell Pearce. In my humble opinion, this represents the problem with NRA “liberal” gun access position. JT Ready was a self avowed Neo-Nazi in Arizona. a war veteran with some severe mental health issues that were becoming more and more apparent leading up to him murdering his girlfriend, her daughter, her 15-month old granddaughter, the daughter’s fiancée, and himself. He had been Court Martialed twice by the Marines and received a bad conduct discharge from the Corps. He was also running for Sheriff in Pinal County. In the home, police found weaponry to include 6 live hand grenades. All weapons recovered were lawfully purchased.

Now for Russell Pearce. He’s the father of SB1070 that he wrote on behalf of the American Legislative Exchange Council at behest of the Private Prison Industry to round-up and lock up people suspected of being here illegally. You know, brown folks who Russell has always had a problem with. Due to his racist views and disgrace he brought to Arizona, his district, a very conservative one at that, recalled him. Today, Russell posted on his Facebook how he blames gun purchase enforcement laws (that really don’t exist anymore) and the victims in Aurora for not fighting back at a man dressed in Kevlar blasting away with an automatic assault rifle (legally purchased) after igniting tear gas canisters in an enclosed theatre.

This picture is emblematic of the goals of the NRA.

When Guns become Religious Icons

As of the time of this post, despite the speculations on both sides of the political aisle, the true motivation behind the Aurora shooting remains unknown. However, whatever the reason, the problem is that a man of apparent mental instability had an assault rifle and used it indiscriminately against unarmed men, women and children and some of the victims were in fact trained military personnel. For those who have followed me on Twitter and this blog know, I have little love or respect for the National Rifle Association while at the same time I do support gun rights in this nation. So, in the aftermath of this tragedy, let’s get some facts out that we can consider in a rational way, assuming you are willing to do so.

Guns are the instruments that people, so inclined, use to kill other people more than anything else. They are very effective in taking the life of whoever it is pointed at when that trigger is pulled. That is what they are designed for, the destruction of whatever is in front of that barrel. So, it’s not exactly true that guns don’t kill people, because without a person pressing their finger on that trigger, the gun pretty much is useless. And I cannot emphasize this more, guns serve no other purpose than to kill, that includes animals and people, target practice not withstanding.

The National Rifle Association was originally created to expand hunting rights for a still young nation where hunting was much more prevalent and necessary than it is today. Somehow they started latching on to 2nd Amendment rights that never, in the history of this nation, were ever in jeopardy. This happened around the time they became lobbyists for gun manufacturers. Coincidence? Possibly, but that is for the individual to decide. Since the 2nd Amendment is always the rallying cry of the NRA, and people take different interpretations of what it means, let me cite my belief. I’m no constitutional scholar, of course few people who speak of this really are, but here goes.

In the time of the writing of the Bill of Rights people need to understand that this nation did not have a standing army nor any police force of any kind. At best, there were some Sheriff’s, Marshals, and possibly some deputies. So no real law enforcement out there. This country and her citizens were under threat of invasion from European nations, like in 1812, or from Canada, Mexico, or from the Native Americans still a bit sore about having their lands stolen from them by these illegal immigrants from across the Ocean. So the need of a “Well Regulated Militia” was seen as a necessity of the day. It is noted that Thomas Jefferson opposed any standing army for the country knowing from history that such armies have been known to usurp power and take over so he advocated a citizen’s militia to counter that possibility.

From my perspective, the key term is “Well Regulated” which would imply, and is proven from historical accounts of the time that those who were part of those “Citizen’s Militias” actually had to train with their fellows on a regular basis to be allowed to be part of the ranks. It made sense then, and makes sense now. If you are going to give a weapon to someone to use that can easily kill others, you want them trained technically and emotionally how to use it. Today our military and police personnel must undergo a battery of psychological evaluations, technical training on how to use a weapon, and must qualify on a range before being issued a weapon. Those not in the military or work for law enforcement have no such requirement at all in this nation. So people paid to protect us must undergo far more to be allowed to use a gun to protect us than others who can carry and yet feel qualified to defend others without the assessments or training.

That being said, you would think that I’m opposed to private citizenship ownership of weapons. That is far from the truth. Even though I do not believe the intent of the 2nd Amendment was to guarantee gun ownership, I do believe that there is nothing inherently wrong in owning a gun for the average person. However, considering the nature of what guns are used for, I do strongly believe that safeguards must be in place to thwart as much harm as reasonable possible.

The NRA love to cite that there are too many gun regulations out there. Well, there’s stuff on the books under the category of “guns” but thanks to the NRA very few actual regulations out there. Those imposed have expired. The issue of Fast and Furious actually did demonstrate that both State and Federal Gun laws have become so lax and are so poorly regulated, straw purchasers with no criminal records were able to buy assault weapons at licensed gun shows for Drug Lords in Mexico, they couldn’t be arrested per the rulings of the prosecutors reviewing the laws. (See my previous rant on this topic)

So all I ask for is that as the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence advocates, that there be a waiting period before anyone can buy a weapon to be properly evaluated to make sure that they have no criminal records or possibly even criminal associates and that they are mentally sound to have a weapon of destruction in their midst. I also agree as did Mitt Romney who signed into law in Massachusetts, that there should be a permanent ban on assault rifles and expanded magazines to carry more ammunition. These are clearly only designed to cause more harm, more quickly without having to reload. Not needed for hunting deer.

Now the NRA would argue that if you have these regulations and these bans, then only criminals will have these weapons. Really? Think about it. By not having them, you make it easier for criminals to get these weapons without raising a single eyebrow from anyone. Lawful and sane people can wait a reasonable amount of time before getting a weapon.

Another talking point from the NRA over issues like these is that if more people were armed in the Theatre, if there was concealed carry laws in effect everywhere, this wouldn’t have happened. Well two things. One, the study saying that “Conceal Carry” reduces crime is bogus. It was poor statistical science making an improper correlation of gun ownership and crime rates and has been since refuted. See this article for an explanation:

Also, “Friendly Fire” incidents from well-trained professionals is one of the leading cause for injuries on the battlefield, or even with police shoot-outs. You want a bunch of untrained, unprepared, emotional scared armed people shooting at everything that moves. The carnage would have grown exponentially.

In my opinion, the NRA only exists as a lobbying organization for the gun manufacturers. They use the guise of “2nd Amendment Rights” to con people into providing them money that they use to manipulate government to place into law, or remove from law regulations that can reduce the possibility of incidents like Aurora, Virgina Tech, Columbine, Gabby Giffords, from happening so that the gun manufacturers that they advocate for can sell more weapons and more ammunition out of unfounded fear and trepidation and get richer. We are the most armed and dangerous society because of that uncontrolled arming. I blame the NRA.

As I’ve tweeted many a time, whenever there is a call for gun control measures to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals and mentally insane, it is the NRA and their supporters who speak the loudest against it, and the reason is obvious from each time they open their mouths.

Get tough against unregulated gun ownership, tell your representatives they must serve us, not the NRA Gun Lobby.