New Democratic National Socialist Party

So, a little Aristotle with your morning coffee. Perfectly logical. Wikipedia says that fascism is Authoritarian Nationalism, defined as an authoritarian government exploiting patriotism as a means of controlling the populace. Nazi is a portmanteau of the first word of the NSDAP, Nationalsozialistische. NSDAP is an abbreviation of Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (National Socialist German Workers Party).  American Nazis are far-right extremists, the furthest thing from reasonable folk, right? The reasonable folk understand that governing this land requires big government. Besides, there are all these upsides to having a Pimp Daddy US. Obvi, no? I’ll make you wait for me to conclude the syllogism. You have to read to the end, sorry.

I saw a YouTube video where the guy was man ‘splaining to us dolts that national socialism isn’t, ipso facto, evil. It’s just socialism implemented at a national level. No problem. Reasonable people agree that by itself, national socialism isn’t bad. Adolf Hitler, though, yeah, that wasn’t good.

So . . . Authoritarian Nationalist Socialism, or socialism that exploits patriotism (or demonizes a titular enemy) to control the populace and perpetuate the continued rule of the current regime. Sound like anything you have heard of in this country?

When Billary lost, what was the response of some? It was that this was racist, it was unfair. Billary won the popular vote. Dumpf is a Nazi extremist, bigoted, alt-right asshole who was going to send home our gardeners and pool boys, take food from babies and kill our old people. What we were supposed to do is elect Billary and continue the current regime, protecting our great country from scary boogeymen like Dumpf. That’s reasonable, right?

Let’s review. Wikipedia says fascism is authoritarian and nationalist. It’s two successful political leaders in recent memory were Mussolini and Hitler. Both were socialists that abandoned any pretense of democracy in the name of doing the needful for the people. Both were loved because they got things done. Italy’s trains ran on time. Hitler bribed his way into popularity by implementing social justice programs for the proletariat. Sorry about that, “kill all the Jews” thing. That was a bit unfortunate. Hey, look, check out the People’s Car made by Porsche and the leader of the Third Reich. Great car, right?

A couple things creep me out when I hear them. One I’ve quoted a bunch in this space, that I should be reasonable. If I was reasonable I’d understand. If I understood I’d agree. If I agreed then I’d come along and raise my flag to our dear leader, like a good little plebeian. The other is shiny toothed politicians who give stump speeches claiming that they can bring me free goodies. Housing, food, medical care, education for the needy. I mean, we don’t really want Appalachian children to starve, do we? And reasonable people would not want grandma to be homeless and hungry, would they?

s-l1000How do we get to Hitler? He was elected into office. His evil ways revealed themselves later. He was a populist politician promising hope and change for the German people. At the start there was no hint of what was to come. It started out great then it got really weird. Hitler happened when the good people were herded into my house, the absurd house where cool is hot, where being bad is good, genocide is necessary for the common good, where the usual rules don’t help. It was a “frog in a pot” thing. By the time the German people understood the depth of the evils being perpetuated it was too late. They were cooked.

Socialism–community control of resources so as to make things fair, so no one has too much nor too little, has this little issue. In order to assure fairness free will has to be contained. There you are, authoritarian control. Somebody has to arbitrate disputes, administer resources so the goal of the enterprise is fulfilled. This authority will either be controlled by a committee or by a barony of some kind. Either way, you and I lose our voice in this. We don’t get a vote.

But . . . that hillbilly kid talked about by the Children’s Defense Fund won’t go hungry because Pimp Daddy Uncle Sam will feed him. Much better. And grandma will be fine because again, the community through one of Pimp Daddy US’s agency’s will take care of her. Warm fuzzies abound. That’s worth losing a little freedom, right?

A tangent. Western First World Vacationaries who arrive in nominally Third World countries are not a blessing. They arrive expecting a high degree of hospitality that costs the local community more than whatever boons will be bestowed. They ignore any indigenous flavor of Christianity as apostate and proselytize Post Great Awakening American Evangelism as the only true religion. The products they bring replace what could be gotten locally and require resources easily available in the First World but impossible to obtain in a hillside village in Central America. The preaching denigrates those within earshot as heathens needing to be saved. Our trillions in foreign aid over a half-century have spawned a massive money laundering operation that has made organized crime and corrupt governments fabulously wealthy. The answer? We have to try harder to evangelize modernist, Utopian socialist, secular democracy so the heathens will behave as we want them to with our money. Not all help is help.

One more. Last year I got a temp job that paid double what I usually make. I was set. I could save half of what I made and bank some cash. So, where is the money from that job? Gone. I spent it in epic FUB style. Wealth redistribution ignores the character flaws which make some of us bad candidates for windfalls. I had a blast for the months I lived in a company paid hotel and got to see a ton of this land behind the wheel of a camera car. I still arrived home broke and needed the help of my church to get through the year.

Our inner cities are populated by people who are trapped by Pimp Daddy US’s benevolence. They are subject to socialism that is authoritarian and implemented by a national government. This is the price they pay for the help promised them, the hope and change they desire. We do this in the name of compassion and the unintended consequence is a life they can’t escape. Socialism that is authoritarian and comes from a national government. Sound like something we’ve seen before?

hillary-clinton-2016All the way through this campaign to elect a president the Democrats pitched themselves as the party of the reasonable folk. Billary was the reasonable candidate who would continue the hope and change promised by Obama in 2008. The battle cry was, “we are stronger together.” The people’s will would get its due through Billary’s leadership. Mussolini made the trains run on time.

And of course, the people’s will was greater government involvement in our lives through a guaranteed $15.00/hour minimum wage, mandated paid time off, mandated compensation for childcare, more funding for Planned Parenthood, a greater expansion of Medicare with a eye toward achieving the goal of single payer (nationalized) health insurance, demonizing states with Right to Work laws, and more, this is what was on offer as the reasonable thing to do. Less choice and more fairness. How is it not reasonable that society should be just? Why wouldn’t you agree to this?

We didn’t agree. We don’t agree. We have seen what a century of social progressive and increasingly authoritarian government has gotten us. We know. That’s what made us vote for an evil man like Dumpf. We understand. We have been voting in Republican majorities to local and state governments for a decade. We are not, will not behave in an amenable way.

Many villages, in the weeks following the departure of the Vacationaries, have to tear down what was built because it can’t be maintained. These villages also have to recoup their losses after putting on an expensive week of hospitality. They are worse off than before the Vacationaries arrived. This is progress. This is Christian benevolence in action. The only difference between this and the mercy programs conducted by governments are the people doing the work. Instead of well-meaning vacation missionaries it is civil servants on taxpayer funded salaries. There is a reason some homeless people decline an offer of public housing.

Our government is socialist and nominally democratic. It is increasingly authoritarian with those in charge proselytizing an ideology that worships science and Marxist thought. The answer pitched by reasonable politicians to most every problem is to let Pimp Daddy US handle it. Some of our yungins cower in safe spaces wanting to be protected from triggers and aggression. Their reasonable desire is for an even more authoritarian government who would ensure their safety. The Constitution challenges their right to be protected from people who cherish their guns and religion. If we had Caesar, he’d fix it. What we really need is a good old god-king like Jim Jones. We have then, a society that is increasingly authoritarian, increasingly nationalist, and demonstrably socialist. So, what is a name for this brave new world? Fascist America.

It’s not a future nightmare. We are already the adjectives that characterize German Nazism. We just haven’t done the concentration camps or genocide, have we? (Anybody remember Manzanar? How about the Native Americans, that wasn’t genocide, was it?) We are just afraid to say the word. Not saying it doesn’t diminish our itch to be what we claim to hate. Nor does it change the conclusion I set up at the start of this. We are already a Nazi country and were headed with due speed toward a more authoritarian, nationalist, and socialist, nee fascist society. Dumpf just slows down the pace of it.

Welcome to the New Democratic National Socialist Federation of North American States! We are stronger together, most of us. If you’ll all just queue up in this line remove all of your clothing and put all your belongings on this table we’ll get started making you comfortable in your new home. We will provide you with a towel as you exit the shower.. At the next station you will find uniforms with your name tag and process id number. We are sorry we can’t provide a more respectful changing room. It’s been such a challenge providing a great experience to those of you joining us at Manzanar. I hope you understand. Life in Manzanar is going to be great, you are going to be great, isn’t American so great again!

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I Am Going to SCREAM!

Parents know this one. The kid decides to put on a no-holds barred, epic, knock-down drag out tantrum. It’s on, baby, it’s on. So, they do. And some parents don’t do well with this so it spins up and nobody wins. The fortunate kids have parents who are non-plussed and wait out the kid.

cross040708_03Some of the opposition has decided to cope with the loss by conducting a massive temper-tantrum. They believe they can be * a n g e r y * enough * l o n g * enough that we will fall into line, impeach Trump and finally coronate Billary like we were supposed to. Among the problems, Billary conceded the race to Dumpf.

But, I don’t write for the fat part of the bell curve that will go along and come along. My crowd is the thousands that took to the streets last night to protest Trump’s victory. Let’s get to the punch-line straight away. What y’all are advocating for is a Socialist Dictatorship led by a corrupt political machine populated with Southern Democratic criminals and Chicago machine political hacks. If Billary had won we would elect a woman for president that has a monstrous organized crime family behind her. The visible nipple is the Clinton Foundation. The whole tit nurses corruption that pervades the entire government and has milk ducts controlled by radical Muslims.

For a century Democratic populism has promised to nurse us, coddle us, protect us from aggression, micro and otherwise, basically, helicopter parent us. Obama was the ultimate pimp daddy who would get us free houses, free Cadillac’s and free cell phones. He said that he would make healthcare affordable. His means? Drastically expand an already monstrously large government that would intrude into our lives even more.

The Democrats showed their true nature last night as they took to the streets to protest the victory of Donald J. Trump. They revealed that they don’t want a democracy. They don’t want self-reliance and a government that supports individual freedom. No, they wanted Billary as a stepping stone toward coronating Hugo Chavez.

My tantrum lasted into my twenties when I met my paternal grandmother. I thought I was smart. I thought I knew how to game the grownups to get what I want. I was going to be famous and people would dote on me. My luvable fuzzball gramma would be standing at the threshold of her house with a piece of blueberry pie as 12 virgins carried me up her steps in a sedan chair. It was going to be great. I was great. So . . . uhm . . . yeah. That didn’t happen.

My great-aunt met me at the bus station and drove me to gramma’s house. There were some quick hugs & kisses, a few pleasantries, then I went to bed. In the morning she wasn’t there. She left a note in her manual typewriter saying she had gone to the radio station to do her show.  She had also left a bus schedule for the 43 bus line (18 line these days). I was to get my own breakfast and make my way to Pacifica Radio’s KPFA at Allston and Shattuck above Edy’s Ice Cream. Well I never . . . My Mom would never treat me this way.

I got there a bit before she had finished reading and talking about the Congressional Record. I waited, and once we were on the bus home began to whine about her hospitality, “You don’t have to live with me. You can leave my house when we get home.” Whoa. Just . . . wait. Hold on, just hold on. Worse, “apologize for being rude. Your father told me about you.” OMG. The insolance. Doesn’t she know who I am? Doesn’t she understand she’s looking at a future star? I turned from her and sulked for a few minutes then let out a weak, “I’m sorry, grandmother.” btw, “gramma”, never “grandmother”.

This election was a huge middle finger to the socialist establishment that had gotten too fat, too comfortable and happy that they could continue defrauding us and “electing” their candidates to office while getting rich off of their lies. The protesters last night demanding Billary as queen are pushing to enact the very tyranny they claim to hate.

But, it would be their rules, so that makes it ok. The oppressed would be those evil white people like me. Serves us right because we’ve had it good for two hundred years so a little genocide and theft is what is needed to put things right.

The revolutionary thing is happening right now. We had an election and the majority lost. In most places in the world this means years of bloody civil war over who will control the empire. Democracy is a rare and fragile thing that most often fails. What succeeds is benevolent, genocidal kings. Be good to those loyal to you and brutal to the opposition. This, that we are doing now, a peaceful transition of power, is the revolution.

My son’s tantrum visiting me lasted two weekend visits. He tried to be brattier than his bratty father. I emptied his room save for a thin foam mat. I cooked food I knew he would not eat. I archived his account on my computer so all his saved games were gone (he thought). My rule, that I can cause duress but not actual harm still applies. He learned he couldn’t win with me by throwing tantrums.

I also spent his childhood talking to him about giving grace first, about serving first, about how I am christian because without Jesus I’d be in a padded room heavily medicated. Next, I made sure he understood that he was loved by me, forever and amen. It was a big deal to me that blood can’t be severed by marital status. I would always be his father whether I was with his Mom or not. His Mom, though she is divorced from me and my family, still is one of us because she is my son’s mother. That too, is an unbreakable blood bond.

Thousands of protesters signaled their virtue last night. Yesterday and today there are millions in this country who need help. They are addicts, crazies, criminals and more. In dozens of cities across this land are the government owned apartment complexes representing the left’s Utopian vision of a docile proletariat happy to have subsidized housing and food stamps. There is work to do and all it takes is showing up at your local NGO to volunteer.

But, tantrums feel good. Tantrums signal that you CARE! DAMMIT! We don’t need your signalling. We need your bodies working in our communities to help those who need it transform their lives and become self-sufficient. Use that intertube thing, that oogle pipes whatever. They have listings. Then, actually show up. It’s not enough to like their MySpace page and post some meemz or go all meta and ritwyyt their call for volunteers.

My grandmother, as she watched the marches and violence of the Civil Rights movement from her living room in Albany, CA, came up with a plan. She was going to Mississippi to help. She found a small town there with some local artisans who had been selling their work in the streets. She met them, helped them form an artist’s cooperative, and through that co-op, changed some lives. It wasn’t loud, the signal was weak, it is forgotten by most, yet, she did more with her art co-op than will ever be accomplished by a mob throwing rocks at the cops.

Two-thousand years ago a no-account carpenter born a bastard began to teach. This dissident rabbi said he was kin to David, the son of God. His church leadership was so disturbed by his claims, his teachings and the miracles happening around him that they forced the Romans to crucify him. His little band of dissidents has grown to be a world-wide movement that thrives today. Through history these rebels have brought down governments and healed millions. They meet every Sunday and do a huge amount of work to serve the children, widows and the sick. You could be part of it. One last thing. If you join us your life will be destroyed and made new. Just letting you know.

thanksgiving-cross

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More Educating Alan

I’m well within my wheelhouse for this space if I just write from my hip and don’t bother with facts. This post felt like it needed seasoning with a bit of fact. I posted this on FB:

100+ years of some degree of Socialist Democracy and the Bern says change means even more Socialism? I don’t understand.

black power sheildThere was some back & forth with my anarchist friend. Then I said, “Socialism is fascism”. No, not by itself. It needs help. Fascism, as defined on Wikipedia: “a form of radical authoritarian nationalism“. Socialism is, for those that don’t want to go look at my prior post on this,  “is a variety of social and economic systems characterized by social ownership and democratic control of the means of production; as well as the political ideologies, theories, and movements that aim at their establishment.” Socialism become fascist with Hitler and Mussolini before WWII.

Socialisms isn’t fascist until it is. To the social ownership and democratic control of production you also need fierce nationalism and an authoritarian government. What we have now is fierce loyalty to a tribe and fierce anger at anyone outside the tribe. We also have a government that is in a rather authoritarian mood and pitching more of this as the best plan going forward.

Democracy in action often means endless meetings and frustration. Because we are a democracy those other people are hard to shut up. You have to talk to them, listen to them, maybe compromise with them. So annoying. For those who wish for a living wage, for free education all the way through college, for safety from triggers and micro-aggression, for free medical care, for a social safety net that means a job isn’t a necessity, for all the things we’ve been promised for over a century, opposition is an unfortunate annoyance. It seems like it would be so much easier if we just had a king who would do the needful.

CoA_of_the_RSIOk fine if that king is benevolent and agrees with what you wish. There is a problem with kings. They can legally have you killed. They are the rule of law so at the end of the day, it’s do as the king wants or die. I’m cranky. I don’t behave. I write about drunk aliens and questionably sane emperors of People’s Park. I’d be safe as long as the king didn’t pay me much mind. But . . . troublemaker that I am, I’d probably end up on his radar and he would not be pleased. Kings are bad for my health.

I don’t doubt the sincerity of those who want Billary & Sanders as our next president. I have a hard time with the claim that a bigger, more authoritarian executive branch is the change we have been promised for over a century. My ancestors came here seeking hope & change. They left their manor homes to escape religious persecution. They thought that coming here would mean starting over in a virgin pastoral utopia where they could finally live as they believed God called them to live. That itch to just tear it all down and start from nothing has remained a constant melodic thread through our history. Obama got elected pitching a new beginning for America and a fundamental transformation of the Puritan experiment. His transformation was, wait for it, a bigger executive branch that has become more authoritarian.

DSA-LA-logoSocialism becomes fascist when a charismatic leader draws us into revival fever full of tribal pride and seduces us into believing that the answer is greater government control of business, industry, assets and property. Billary & Sanders are smart. They are not preaching a brighter future. We were sold a time share in hope & change by a brown man in a nice suit and can’t afford the monthly payments. They are preaching the apocalyptic warnings of Isaiah and the Revelation of John. They are warning us that if we don’t let them expand government control we are doomed. It is a sermon the yungins are feeling deeply.

Government control of industry can reign in their evil, polluting ways and save the planet. Government regulation of wages can assure everyone of a living wage and end our forced viewing of those doe-eyed kids on TV who we are told are starving and need our donation of just a dollar a day. (Those kids were on TV when I was a kid. I’m guessing they have grandchildren now.)Government regulation of work rules can assure us of two months of paid leave. We already have Obama care and while it does help some people it works because those younger pay higher costs so that those older can pay lower costs. Old folks get nice silicone dildos while the youth get red oak covered in ferrous oxide sandpaper.

I get my claim that socialism is fascist from talk radio. I said socialism is fascist out of fear and ignorance. I didn’t do my own homework. Socialist democracies have become fascist but socialism isn’t on its face fascist. The danger is in making the president more powerful and authoritarian. What worries me about supporters of Billary & the Bern is that they are rushing toward a more authoritarian executive branch in the name of change and fairness.

Can we not repeat more of the same in the name of real change, of real hope & fairness? I am also in an apocalyptic mood. My bet on the dead pool for this country has a lot of squares. I’m not betting on any square beyond another century or so before the American experiment collapses into regional fiefdoms. There is a revolution afoot. It started right around the time the socialists got elected here almost a century ago and elsewhere and began to dismantle our democracy as we knew it.

The work is almost done. We don’t have far to go before the festering puss of failed socialism bursts through our abscessed skin. We are not fascist yet. All we need is more socialism paired up with a weaker congress and a stronger, authoritarian president ginning up national (pride isn’t the word) sentiments favoring the fashionable tribe. We almost have it. We saw elements of it in the protests of the Black Lives Matter cadre against the police. You’ll know we achieved it when this blog is taken down by the government because it is deemed hate speech promoting micro-aggression and containing overmuch triggering.

 

 

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Trope–Not News to You

First Posted 07-Mar-2015

“Drip, drip, drip” has become a trope. Rush Limbaugh has used it repeatedly to refer to the slow bleed of leaked stories about classified information allegedly stored on private servers owned by Hillary Clinton. I decided to write about the word, “trope” after hearing it used by Norman Chan of tested.com and by NPR, “so, Hillary’s alleged misuse of a private e-mail address evokes all those Conservative Talk Show tropes about an inability to trust the Clintons.” The emerging story on the Clintons is how little our current administration cares to respect the rule of law. Trump isn’t far off in claiming that he could shoot people and his supporters wouldn’t care. The “drip, drip, drip” trope has continued so the circumstantial case against Clinton is hard to deny.

trope dollTrope” is a word that is new to me. It is 16th Century Latin from Greek, αλληγορία, meaning a figure or turn of speech. I have a feeling though, that I am becoming aware of a trend in language that has been around awhile and I’ve just missed it until the word popped up on NPR and out of the mouth of Norman Chan of Tested.com. I thought the word was blog-post worthy for this space because a recurring theme of this site is language, narrative, and how we use both to explain what we do and to decide to do it. The word has been around for a few hundred years and its modern use is at least a decade old. So, for some, the word is not news. I’m just slow to become aware of it. As usual.

Trope, as used by Norman Chan, seems to be a way of quoting a whole plot line just by the title. “The Archetypical Hero’s Tale” of Joseph Campbell fame, evokes many stories, Star Wars among them, for those that know it. For those literate in it, all that is needed is the four word title and you can move on to telling other stories.

Another use of it was on NPR, in talking about the recent news that Hillary Clinton had registered her own e-mail domain name and rented space on a hosting service for her own e-mail. For 99% of us, buying a domain with an e-mail account isn’t news. Many of us do this. I’ve had this domain for a bunch of years. I’ve owned various domains over the years, mostly through Web.com. Through my account with them, I have available 1,000 possible e-mail accounts. I only use one or two of my 1,000 possible accounts. As just a regular person, what Ms. Clinton did is nothing newsworthy. Ms. Clinton, though, isn’t just a regular person. She’s been a First Lady to her husband, Bill Clinton, a U.S. Senator to New York State, and Secretary of State under Barack Obama. Some of her email is a matter of public record and the property of the Federal Government. It matters what e-mail address she uses when she is working.

Yeah, yeah, trope . . . there is a connection, long winded as it is. What I heard from NPR is something like, “so, Hillary’s alleged misuse of a private e-mail address evokes all those Conservative Talk Show tropes about an inability to trust the Clintons.” Trope? Oh. So, “trope” as used here is a way of quoting a whole slew of rants about the Clintons as uttered by a group of talk show hosts that NPR thinks are enemies of Hillary & Bill Clinton. Ok. I think I get it, kinda.

Norman Chan’s use of it was to describe story-telling techniques used in films that he likes. He described a movie where the bad guy rescuing a cat was a way of making the baddie empathetic. This becomes the “Cat Rescue Trope” and this particular film used it to mock other film-makers that over-use it. We know and can document, the existence of books, for about 4600 years. The practice of story telling is probably older than that. We’ll go with 4600 years for now. So, over 4 millennia to write stories. The study of story is probably just as old. As a people, we know a lot about how stories get told. We know there are tropes that recur across time and culture. It becomes possible to just refer to the “Cat Rescue Trope” and nearly finish telling that story just in three words.

Here is the connection for me in this space. There are tropes we repeat that mark how we view our truth, our reality, and out of that, how we choose our behavior. NPR and their dark partners in conservative talk radio, both know the story of Ms. Clinton’s misuse of her own domain name. The story they tell about it, though, isn’t the same. They each have their tropes, their shorthand, for explaining what they believe Ms. Clinton did/didn’t do properly. Did Ms. Clinton screw up? Probably. Will this be the public narrative explaining why she doesn’t end up being our country’s first woman president? Time will tell. I’d rather she didn’t become president. But my reasons have to do with her political views and not so much her character. What became blog worthy for me though, was these two instances of the word, “trope” in my life–from Norman Chan and from NPR. And old word becoming new to me. Cool.

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Gun Control

This originally posted 08-Nov-2015.

This morning (07-Jan2016) Whoopie Goldberg made news because she said we should ban automatic weapons that were banned in 1934.
In 1989 California banned assault weapons and large capacity magazines. Gun manufacturers modified their semi-automatic rifles so that they could still be sold in California. The main difference? A California AR-15 has a fixed magazine holding no more than 10 rounds.

The headlines which prompted this post have fallen out of the news cycle. The press is bored with the story and has moved on. Lately, it’s Billary & Sanders who have their attention and whether Billary was derelict in her duty as Secretary of State while our embassy in Benghazi, Libya was being attacked. The spin being espoused has a lot to do whether you believe in the orthodoxy of the Republican establishment or the puritanism of the Democrats.

Back to what this post was about—gun control. Several people were killed in the shooting in Wuerenlingen, northern Switzerland.I have a hard time with any phrase that is xxxxx control. Drug control, crime control, gun control, blah blah control. I distrust the success of any law attempting to impose control on us. Somewhere in me is an abiding suspicion that I and those like me are incorrigible. We outliers are the minority exception to the majority rule. Yes, some of us get caught and spend time in jail. Some get tired of the criminal justice system and quit behaving in ways that cause them to catch more cases and time. Some don’t. Some die unrepentant.

Propaganda that pitches the need for gun control as, “there was a person shot to death with a gun today. That’s one too many deaths by guns. We have to ban/control guns to stop this onslaught of gun violence and death“, just annoys me. It sets of a tough to resist impulse to scream and yell at the TV about the stupidity of that problem and solution statement. The blame is placed with the weapon used to commit the crime. The conclusion pitched is that if we remove the weapon we’ll stop the crime. And the sad truth is that humans intent on murder have been rather darkly ingenious when it comes to the means by which murder is committed. Without guns we’ll invent something else, suicide bombs anybody?

As I type this a woman drover her car into the crowd of the Oklahoma State homecoming parade. 4 people are dead and 50 are injured. This may not equate, but I’ll say it anyway. If removing guns from the hands of people who shouldn’t have them will reduce gun crime then can we also say that removing cars from the hands of those who shouldn’t have them reduce car crime? We don’t know yet the status of this woman’s driver’s license. I doubt she was worried about that as she decided to plow into a crowd of innocent people and kill 5 of them. Also, since this post was first drafted some crazy person found a sword and used it in Switzerland to kill two people and injure two others. The optics were earily similar to our mass shootings at public places which were a favorite story of the press for a while.

We are scarily talented when it comes to conceiving of ways to kill each other. A lack of guns isn’t the impediment to violence we wish it would be. Swords can be just as deadly in the wrong hands. We have the logical fallacy of taking the specific instance and trying to generalize from it. One more crazy person shot up another public place, this time a college in Oregon. And so the propaganda that we have to make sure this never happens again by ensuring that no more crazy people can get a gun. My itch to scream at the TV is getting much worse. Us, the outliers, are not dissuaded by laws saying we can’t do what we do. I don’t wish to see another shooting at another public place. I like the idea that we could do something so that this last shooting remains the last shooting. But I’m an outlier and I have friends. There are too many of us who won’t obey the law for me to be comfortable with another iteration of laws attempting to keep us from getting guns.

The problem isn’t the weapon, be it a gun or a sword, or as C.S. Lewis spoke of, a baseball bat. Gun control laws have not prevented the crimes we were promised they would prevent. Miyamoto Musashi (宮本武蔵) won deadly duels against steel katana and trained solders using a red-oak practice sword. The problem is the collective heart of the country reflected in the leadership we have in office. Our collective heart is in a rather dark place and some of the ways this darkness is manifested is through these mass shootings. The solution is not a legal one but a spiritual one. We need a change of heart, a change toward compassion and leadership to help us with that.

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