Thursday, July 11, 2013

Second Amendment Rant

The Second Amendment Never Gets Old
A little over forty years ago on a show called All in the Family, Archie Bunker (Carroll O'Connor) was arguing with his television daughter, Gloria Bunker-Stivic (Sally Struthers) about gun control. Gloria asks Archie if he is aware that sixty-five percent of homicides committed in the last ten years were by handguns, to which Archie retorts, "Would it make you feel any better, little girl, if they was pushed out of windows?" Video can be seen here.

Now, aside from producer Norman Lear's obvious Liberal bent, the line was a good one, no matter how stupid the show tried to make Archie appear. And apparently, the left in this country still feel the same way, to which I would ask, "Would you feel better if George Zimmerman died instead of Travon Martin, by having his head crushed against the sidewalk"?

It seems that leftists like Piers Morgan and Jeff Daniels would indeed feel better so long as a gun was not involved. Daniels appeared on Morgan's show the other day, and said that a gun was responsible for the tragedy of Martin's death, and astoundingly stated that the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was, to paraphrase, from a "different time". So what has changed in your opinion, Jeff?

Is our government so trustworthy today that we can toss our guns in a heap and expect that we will be protected? Protected from whom, I would ask, because our government today is more frightening than the "alleged" criminals wandering around, and they are buying billions of rounds of ammunition almost daily. Once our guns are taken away, do you, Jeff, feel like you will be protected, and by whom? The people with the power and the guns?

For anyone out there who feels secure in what their government is doing these days, I both pity and fear you, for you are the people who help facilitate the end of liberty in America and a full fledged police state just like we feared as children. The government doesn't even have our guns yet, and they are behaving like tyrants, using the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and the TSA (Transportation Safety Administration) to restrict our activities. What would happen if a citizen refused to follow the edicts of either of these bureaus?

Someone like Jeff Daniels would most likely wave a dismissive hand at these questions, with a smirk, and say something like, "Don't be silly, that ain't gonna happen in America." That's what leftists do. I won't bother with the "Guns don't kill people" or the "When guns are outlawed" memes, they are useless anyway, though no less true. But it must be noticed that the one thing, beyond honor -- which has long left our Capitol -- that has kept us free is our guns.

If they are ever taken away -- at whatever cost to our lives and our society -- we will have succumbed to the same fate as countries we have only read about in our history books, back when those books carried true history. This is what I fear for my children and grandchildren. This is what I fear from my government, a government I did not fear as a child, when things were a bit more sane, or at least seemed to be.

Forgive me for getting a little bit antsy when celebrities start spouting off about our Constitution, and blithely suggesting that this or that amendment is expired. In our world today, celebrities are the teachers of our culture, for our young pay more attention to them than they do our school teachers. If Jeff Daniels wants to give a message to our children, perhaps he should tell them not to shoot anybody unless their lives are in danger, but also to tell them that gun safety is a responsibility they should take seriously.

Not that their rights as Americans are outdated.

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Sunday, July 7, 2013

As the Timbers of America Creak

We Fought For This
On July 4th, we celebrated our 237th year of independence from the British crown, a moment in history made possible by our military which achieved victory over an army in almost insurmountable odds.

Thomas Jefferson spent over two weeks in June of 1776 drafting our Declaration of Independence, eloquently detailing our grievances against a tyrannical monarchy in which the American people declared forcefully that we wanted our freedom from arbitrary rules at a cost no less than our lives.

Prior to Jefferson's draft, perhaps the most compelling indication of how much we cherished freedom was a speech delivered to the Virginia Conventions in Richmond at St. John's Church on March 20th, 1775. Patrick Henry ending his speech to the convention with this plea:
It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace - but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the North will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, and peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death! -- Patrick Henry, March 20th, 1775
That is the attitude that gave birth to America, and for nearly 200 years, it was what guiding our policies both at home and in Washington. Our presidents adhered to the principles on which we were founded because they believed in them deeply, and the people who were born here and the immigrants who came from other lands all bought into it equally. All loved the freedom of America in both good and bad times.

So what has happened to us in the last few decades? Have we enjoyed so much privilege and prosperity that there is nothing left to seek? Certainly we are not created equal by birth as to wealth and success, and our system was always intended to be that way. We are all created equal in the Eyes of God as to the opportunity to succeed as a ratio to how hard we work to achieve our goals, whatever we decided those goals to be. Success has never been guaranteed.

Not our best days
Up until the 1960's, America had been steadily traversing a course toward that which led the world, was indeed the envy of the world. It seems that a bunch of privileged kids -- who apparently grew weary of the idyllic lifestyles provided by their parents -- decided that the American style of freedom was not enough for them. They wanted more.

And so began the course upon which we travel now; a course that appears to have us galloping toward a past we left long ago -- that of the European social model. We now have a "royal" class of citizens, a class to whom the privilege of serving is viewed as a right. I'm not talking about the soldiers who serve -- I'm talking about those in Congress to whom a Senate seat, e.g., is seen as something to pass down to offspring.

We have a Democrat Party that has cultivated a culture of dependency in America that is unprecedented, spending billions on food stamps and other welfare programs, not to mention the billions on free cell phones and the like. Worse, we have a population that has demanded these things -- nay, has come to expect them -- thereby effectively feeding the coal furnace of tyranny.

And yet, on our 237th anniversary, because of alleged cuts in the budget from the so-called sequester, our military family members and their families were denied the joy of a 4th of July fireworks display, while our king President and his family spent $100 million on a vacation to Africa. Millions more are spent on advertising for welfare programs.

We have squandered the splendor our forefathers bequeathed to us and have forged our own shackles, all in the name of "security and peace". We are already feeling the ultimate effects of Socialism and tyranny, and we keep grazing like so many sheep, and I am ashamed for my country.

That sound you may hear is the timbers of America groaning under the strain. Or it may be the bones of our Founders as they turn in their graves.

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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Perhaps a Return of Sanity to the Middle East

Egypt was a friendly nation once.
Hosni Mubarak was not a perfect man, nor a perfect leader, but he was miles above that of the Muslim Brotherhood representative Mohammed Morsi. Israel knew for thirty years that it had a partner on their Egyptian border and security from that particular front was relatively secure.

Who can forget the tragedy of the Camp David Peace Accord, engineered by President Carter -- yes, I do give him credit for that move -- between Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and  Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, which ultimately got Sadat assassinated? It reminded us then that peace comes at great cost.

But it set in motion a policy in Egypt that withstood throughout Mubarak's years until a certain Chicago community organizer began to stir the pot. The so-called "Arab Spring" began with protests in Egypt which eventually culminated in our U.S. President calling for Mubarak to step down, which began a tumultuous disintegration of whatever civility existed in the Middle East. We're still in the throes of the chaos, from the tragic events in Libya to the current "rebel war" in Syria.

Resisting the temptation to make this all about Obama, I would be remiss if I didn't at least give him mention, for it seems clear to me that there is a certain agenda at play here where Obama ignores the seemingly legitimate cries for freedom of the people of Iran, for example, but sends arms to Islamist "rebels" in Syria, not to mention the tanks and warplanes and millions of dollars to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. Is anyone at home even paying attention?

Also remember the alleged coup in Honduras a few years ago, in which this administration demanded the immediate return of Honduran ex-president Manuel Zelaya after his Congress had him removed for trying to usurp the Honduran Constitution. It seems our president has a problem with the word "Constitution", regardless of country.

So it will hardly be surprising to see if Obama condemns the Egyptian military's temporary suspension of their own Constitution until a swift election can be held. After all, the very word suspension should spark fears of tyranny, no? It will fit Obama's pattern of hypocrisy all too well.

The events of today have given the world hope of sanity returning to the Middle East, least not being the Egyptian people. The man in charge there right now -- General Abdel Fatah Said al-Sisi -- says that elections will be held quickly and the reigns handed back to the new Egyptian civilian government, something that seems all too American. George Washington couldn't wait to hand America back to the citizens, after all. So why not support the coup in Egypt?

This is the positive step I have seen in the Middle East since early 2011, and I welcome the news. Let's just hope that the people of Egypt use this opportunity wisely. General Al-Isis has included in his remarks the rights of "every man and woman". Sounds pretty good to me. Islamists don't include women in their prayers.

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