If we’re going to have gun debate, and if we’re going to be adults, we need to get a few facts straight. Like I’ve said before, we’re entitled to our own opinions, but we’re not entitled to our own facts. If we do this and remember to respect each other, we should be fine.
With that in mind, we need to clear up a few “facts” about gun control.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve seen many on the pro-gun side posting pictures of Israeli teachers armed with rifles. You can see one such picture above. These individuals point to it and say it’s a beautiful thing to see a country determined and willing to protect its youth, that it shows our cowardice when we don’t arm our own teachers.
However, context matters. Yes, Israel doesn’t have school shootings like we do, and it’s easy to say that the armed teachers help. After all, Israel gave teachers guns and they haven’t had the kinds of mass shootings we have, right?
It should also be noted that teachers in Israel who do choose to carry firearms almost always have a background in the Israeli Defense Forces, meaning they have military training. Contrast all these things with the US where anyone can walk into Wal-Mart and walk out with a shotgun and as much ammo to invade Fallujah. In Israel, civilians are limited to how much ammunition they may own, and there are even regulations on how that ammo can be stored.
So, to all who keep pointing to Israel as a haven where the population can be armed as they see fit and don’t suffer the kinds of shootings here, I’d like you to remember this.
They have MUCH stricter gun control than us. They didn’t eliminate their guns, but they require those who use them to be trained and regulated with periodic checks and, as such, have fewer guns per capita. This is the kind of thing most of us are trying to push. I don’t want guns eliminated entirely. Not by a mile, but I do acknowledge that they are weapons designed to kill. They are not tools. As such, they require training and constant attention.
In the US, while the number of guns has gone up, the number of gun owners has gone DOWN while the number of gun deaths has also slowly gone down. This doesn’t point to more guns making us safer. It points to less people owning guns making us safer.
Now then, if you’re going to keep pointing to the “Israeli model” as proof we need armed teachers, you should also be pointing out the strict background checks, training, and regulation mandated by the government and that said teachers previously worked as soldiers.
Like I said, context is everything.
Conservative radio host Alex Jones filed a petition to the White House citizen input website to have Piers Morgan deported for his stance on gun control. Piers Morgan subsequently had Mr. Jones on his show to talk about it where he acted out with fury.
“I’m here to tell you, 1776 will commence again if you try to take our firearms! Doesn’t matter how many lemmings you get out there on the street, begging for ’em to have their guns taken. We will not relinquish them. Do you understand?! That’s why you’re going to fail, and the establishment knows, no matter how much propaganda, the republic will rise again!”
Piers Morgan later descried how uncomfortable the experience was.
“I can’t think of a better advertisement for gun control than Alex Jones’ interview last night,” Morgan told CNN on Tuesday. “It was startling, it was terrifying in parts, it was completely deluded. It was based on a premise of making Americans so fearful that they all rush out to buy even more guns … the kind of twisted way that he turned everything into this assault on the Second Amendment is exactly what the gun rights lobby people do.” Huffington Post 01/09/2012
Even Conservative radio host Glenn Beck thought Mr. Morgan chose the right person to point out the lunacy of the pro gun control movement.
In a controversial move, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio launched a program on Monday that has armed volunteer posses patrolling Valley elementary schools. The posses arrived without notice, leaving parents and school staff startled.
Stevenson and Taft Elementary staff were supportive of the new program, but no one had any information as to where these people would be or even who they were.
“I was a little confused when I was in parking lot with those two gentlemen in the marked car. It sure seemed like from the uniforms they might have been regular deputies, but I’m not sure I’ve seen uniforms for the posse members,” said Taft elementary principal Russ Heath. ABC15.com 1/09/2012
“We’ve got some [volunteers] with automatic weapons; I’m not afraid to say that,” Arpaio says.
The areas around some 50 schools under the jurisdiction of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office will be patrolled, but the sheriff wouldn’t divulge the exact number of volunteers to be deployed. Up to 400 of the posse members are trained and certified to carry firearms, as are roughly 100 reserve deputies who also may take part in the daily patrols through the end of the school year.
According to The Miami Herald Henry Hamilton, 64, owner of Tropical Tan had been rambling about President Obama’s re-election stating that “if Barack gets re-elected, I’m not going to be around.”
Hamilton was found dead on Nov. 8, with the words “F— Obama!” scrawled on his will and two empty prescription bottles nearby.
Police spokeswoman Alyson Crean said a cause of death is awaiting autopsy results from the Monroe County Medical Examiner’s Office but said, “There’s absolutely no evidence of foul play.”
According to Dykes’ report, Cossey returned to the South Roosevelt Boulevard condo he shared with Hamilton after a late night of playing cards with friends and fell asleep on the couch around 6 a.m.
A friend of Hamilton had been worried about him and had a standing request to police to make welfare checks. Officer Pablo Rodriguez did just that and when he went to the condo, he woke up Cossey, prompting the discovery of Hamilton’s body in the bedroom.
Dykes reported finding two empty prescription bottles, one for Xanax and one for Seroquel, used to treat anxiety and schizophrenia, respectively.
Cossey told police Hamilton “has been very stressed about his business,” and the last time they had spoken was “when we watched the election results” on Nov. 6.
Although the business was a tanning salon on one of the most sunny beaches in the nation, Hamilton apparently thought Obama was the reason for it failing.
As the presidential candidates are in the final stretch, it’s obviously taking its toll on a waning Romney campaign. While the popular vote is neck and neck, the Electoral College is not shaping up for the Republican challenger as well as they had hoped.
Things are starting to unravel for the campaign and it’s showing, according to the Telegraph.co.uk
That’s wholly understandable – the toll these campaigns have on candidates and their families are horrendous.
But what’s more telling are a series of quotes from Romney campaign officials. Again, there are the normal caveats about the private polling showing their man holding onto a tight lead.
But then we get this: “At a rally this morning in New Hampshire, I asked a senior Mitt Romney campaign adviser what the campaign had planned in the final crucial days. His answer was swift. ‘Praying’.”
And this: “One adviser this morning was even more candid: “I’m not saying (Mr. Obama) is definitely going to lose.”
And finally this: “We’re the challengers. We always knew we could lose,” one aide told me here in Dubuque. “They [the Obama camp] never contemplated they could lose.”
Mr. Romney’s path to victory relies on a series of victories in states where he’s down in the polls and unexpected Obama losses.
Although the media hasn’t given much time to Romney’s record in MA, the citizens of the Commonwealth remember Romney quite well. Many, Republicans included, were disappointed by his performance, and Deval Patrick’s speech at the DNC summed things up nicely:
“He was a lot more interested in having the job than doing the job.”
Much of Mitt Romney’s rise to political prominence comes from a interesting combination of perseverance and luck. A man, who doesn’t seem to hear the word “no” much, has used Massachusetts has a stepping stone to the White House. Only in office for one term, Romney couldn’t even last the full four years and opted to spend almost 212 days out of the state. Well, what was he doing you might ask?! Beginning to run for President of course!
Using an average of four days a week, the sitting governor visited 35 states and eight countries. He was even kind enough to visit the soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq; getting his feet wet in foreign affairs and national politics. Till this point the Bain baron, Olympics savior, and MA governor had little name recognition, and getting out on the open road and visiting the troops and speaking on behalf of Congressional candidates was a great way to show his face to Americans.
While MA still stumbled with nationally high unemployment numbers and the acquisition of healthcare reform, Mitt was busy using state troopers to cross the United States making speech after speech. He was even able to raise money for his two year old PAC (Commonwealth PAC). During the 2006 election cycle it raised $2.71 million. Not bad for one year. Although getting that money wasn’t always easy. Romney was forced to compromise, or should I say flip-flop, on his moral stance on a few policies. Gay marriage became abominable, abortions became sinful, and the healthcare mandate he gleefully passed was now something to shy away from.
And what about those voters in MA that honored the Mittster with the seat of Governor? Well, they became the center of his political jokes. Certainly not a very funny man, Romney tried to woo some of the more average Joes with jokes like:
“Being a conservative Republican in Massachusetts is like being a cattle rancher at a vegetarian convention.”
The only funny thing about this joke is calling himself a conservative Republican from Massachusetts. In all honesty, there really is no such thing, and Romney was not the leader to stand up for “conservative” values. For many Massachusetts citizens, Romney pulled a fast one and distanced himself as quickly as possible from the state that was good enough to land him his first real political stepping stone. While pandering to a group of conservatives in Utah, Romney even said that he wished his state was more like theirs.
Mittens really had no, and still has no, line in the sand. Everything to him is fair game so long as he obtains his goals. Ambition is by no means something that should be absolutely rejected, but ambition sometimes hides a deeper thirst for power and Mitt is certainly thirsty. Viewing his rise to power really shows a pattern of events and articulated movements that he thought would land him in the Oval Office. No luck yet, but never count out a multi-million dollar business man with a hope for even more power.
Don’t Believe Me? Check My Sources:
Just hours after attending church, Albert Peterson shot his wife and two sons before turning the gun on himself. According to a source close to the family ‘he just did not want his kids inheriting this mess,’ Maggie L, who did not wish to reveal her last name, told MailOnline. ‘Sometimes we thought he might take his own life when he was so depressed. We never thought he would take Kathie’s.’
A history of mental illness, the loss of a dear uncle, and a growing fear of Obama winning a second term in the White House took its toll on the mind of Mr Peterson, a wealthy defense contractor, the friend said. A friend of the family says that Albert suffered from debilitating paranoia, exacerbated by the upcoming election.
Mitt Romney has done a lot of things, but playing a race card with himself may be one of the worst. A lot of liberal blogs and commentators have spoken or written about the apparent “browning” the former governor underwent before his Univision interview. Many have called it an attempt to appeal to Latinos by looking darker. Romney’s campaign has in fact run many Spanish-language ads where his sons tout their father’s accomplishments.
And before anyone asks, no, the captions in the previous link are parody, not an accurate translation.
Some, however, are saying this is a scandal born of nothing. One of my readers on Facebook said that we liberals are better than this. We can’t possibly focus on him looking tanned on a Spanish-language network and think that he donned “brownface” to appeal to Hispanic voters. There is no proof of this, she said, and in many ways she’s right. This “scandal” hinges on the assumption that Mitt Romney would think darker skin tones would endear him to a section of the population. It means we believe Mitt is shallow enough to even think this will work and it lowers the political debate to speculation and name-calling.
Fair enough. We really don’t know if this was intentional. Interviews with the make-up artists at the station apparently support the idea that Romney arrived like this. But do we really think Romney, a presidential candidate, tanned himself with the idea that he could court Hispanic voters by looking brown?
Yeah, I do.
Romney is the slimiest politician I can remember. He doesn’t have a personality. With all respect to Bret Easton Ellis, there is no Mitt Romney, but rather the idea of Mitt Romney. All he feels is ambition and greed. You can shake his hand and feel he’s real, but he’s simply not there.
Consider the ridiculous amounts of flip-flops he’s engaged in just in the last three months. Consider, for example, that he’s gone after Obama’s health care mandate despite Romney himself pushing a nearly identical plan. Consider everything he claims he stands for and how it’s an odds with his actions.
Yeah, I believe he would tan himself to appeal to Hispanic voters. I also believe he’d sell his own wife for an Electoral College vote if he had the chance. I mean, he packed the forum full of his own people because he couldn’t find enough supporters in the general population. This is a guy who think a quarter million dollars is median income.
I mock him because he deserves it, I disagree with nearly everything he says, and I find him transparent to the point of ridiculousness. So, no, I’m not being petty. I’m pointing out another instance of him whoring himself for the sake of power. Frankly, he’s a prostitute with a bad make-up job. And I’m not buying what he’s selling, no matter how much he “tarts” himself up.