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Some years ago, a friend of mine, on reading the then-new Harry Potter book’s line about a ‘wretched American President’ declared he was done. And that Rowling had, in intending to insult Bush, instead insulted Clinton, the whole of the series (excepting Philosopher’s Stone) being set in the Clinton administration. Seems she forgot her own timeline.

Anyway, I then expressed my opinion that a liberal bent in an author is not exactly a shock. Wedging in an attempted insult for no good reason is a sign of being a hack, to be sure, but the political leaning is to be expected.

And it continues. Every election cycle, we get the hoary trope of the current crop of popular actors making the usual impassioned plea to elect whomever the Democratic party is running, lest the world end, movies all become ‘Birth of a Nation’ (the original), and art wither and die. And, like a Pavlovian response, conservatives decry this as spoiled, irrelevant, and likely highly uninformed twits mouthing whatever pabulum they have been instructed to. Which isn’t wrong, but is very, very tiring.

Look, unless you live in a fantasy world, which far too many conservatives seem to, you can safely assume that every single actor, writer, singer, dancer, artist, et-fraking-cetera is a leftist. Seriously. It is like assuming fire is hot. You just do it.

This shouldn’t be a surprise. The political left is usually aligned with the concerns of the arts community, so it makes sense to support those who support you. Duh.

Can we stop pretending this is a surprise, and move past it. Constantly rehashing the same tired nonsense is one of those things that hurt the conservatives more than anything, and we, as a body, need to stop. And to those in the arts, please look critically at the policies and practices of the Democratic party before doing as they ask, and blindly supporting them. You might be surprised at just what it is they are supporting…

How Do You Justify This, North Miami PD?

How Do You Justify This, North Miami PD?

I know it is early to comment, this just seems fairly straight-forward, with not a lot of room to interpret…

charles kinsey before being shot

I have stayed mainly silent on the subject of police shootings. My default setting is something like ‘don’t break the law, don’t be an ass, and you are pretty much immune to being shot by cops’. Police officers are not, emphatically not, out ‘hunting black people’, as some idiots claim. While that is true, there have been instances that are not justified, or may have been but not as they played out. As always, there is no way to know how something looks to a police officer before they join the 12%(ish) that ever draw their weapon outside the range.

Keep that in mind – roughly 12% of all active police officers will ever fire a weapon. The stats are not well defined, and that number comes from 2011 [1]. So the vast majority of officers will never fire their weapon in the line of duty.

An as-yet-unnamed officer in North Miami, on the other hand, has. And he shot an unarmed man lying with his hands in the air.

Are you fucking kidding me?

One of the most annoying things about the Black Lives Matter movement is the chant of ‘hands up, don’t shoot’. Referencing the false testimony (recanted, no less) that Michael Brown was shot with his hand up in  pose of surrender. He wasn’t. He was shot attacking the officer that stopped him after he committed strong-arm robbery. Did he deserve it? Not for me to judge – I wasn’t there, and can’t make the officer’s decision for him. But his hands were not up.

Therapist Charles Kinsey, on the other hand, had his hands up. He was lying down. He was unarmed (hell, his hands were open!). And he got shot. In the leg.

This means a few things beyond what the media, BLM, and the political left will glom onto.

  • The officer’s aim sucks. You are never taught to aim at the leg, always center mass His aim really sucks, since the odds are he was aiming at the autistic guy with a toy truck. But hey, since he has issues aiming, no one died, so maybe…well, not silver…perhaps an aluminium lining?
  • Seriously, in what universe were either men a threat to the officer? One is fairly obviously mentally disabled (autistic – but to the observer that may not be obvious), the other, again, laying on his back with his hands up. In what way was there any threat to anyone? How the hell is that a justified shooting? Simple – it is not.
  • You know, why have guns, much less a rifle, in the first place? Where was the imminent threat to anyone’s life, property, etc.? I know the video isn’t the full encounter, but I don’t see a threat here, and cannot fathom how anyone see a threat. By way of comparison, in the Laquan McDonald shooting, I can see how the officer could think he was in danger. Not ‘shoot the kid lying in the street’ danger, but I can see how he would feel the need to shoot. I also disagree with it, especially since the on-scene officers didn’t feel the same need. But this? How?

I can’t see how this is in any way justifiable. There is no threat, no danger, no risk, and (as far as I can see) no crime being committed. None. I wonder about the caller too…

The chief said officers responded following reports of a man with a gun threatening to kill himself, and the officers arrived “with that threat in mind” — but no gun was recovered from the scene. –Tribune News Services

Huh. The truck as gun, I suppose, but threats to kill themselves? I guess I just don’t see it.

This is exactly the kind of thing that tars all police officers, and empowers anti-police sentiment. That alone makes the officer who fired the shots an idiot. The next police officer shot in an ambush could well be on him.

He should be fired, and prosecuted for this. He broke the law, and he is not above the law because he has a uniform and badge.

Two Americas

Two Americas

Have you noticed that we live in a split nation of late? I wish this was a Cubs / Sox thing, or Bears / Packers. But it isn’t. We live in a nation where there have become two groups of people, with radically different assumptions and goals, mores and culture, and I think we are approaching the time when a divorce may become needed.

Much like the Civil War (really not, but that’s the name), even with the same losing side.

First, the sides. On one hand we have a culture that focuses on what are seen as more traditional aspects of life – family, community, being outdoors, sports, self-reliance, and a more insular outlook on things. This side has been attacked in media, culture, and politics as ‘stupid’, ‘ignorant’, ‘backwards’, ‘racist’, and anti-gay, anti-Muslim, anti-woman, and so forth. They are the butt of jokes, the witless foils. They have been looked down on by people who are smug in their superiority. And they have not taken action against this, preferring to work, raise families, and keep being who they are.

On the other side, we have arrogance, shrieking, actual racism, actual ignorance, and a deep-seated opposition to the idea that reasonable people can, and should, disagree. This side defines itself through hate, insists that no one is allowed to disagree with them, and that they know best how everyone should live. This side has always hated, always been virulently racist, and shows no signs of stopping.

Needless to say, that second group will be the losing side in any conflict or splitting of the nation.

And we should let them go. We don’t need them – not in the least. They don’t farm, don’t produce durable or other goods, and have the temerity to look down on those who do. They defended slavery, invented Jim Crow, and still insist that, as a group, they know what is best for minorities. The racism there is no less than it was when the minions of Bull Connor set dogs on protesters in Birmingham, AL. They assume that all Blacks, Hispanics (not even Mexicans/Hondurans/Colombians/etc. – they are all Hispanic), Asians, and women are monocultures that have the exact same wants, needs, desires, and thoughts. They attack, in the most hateful manner, those who dare step out of that externally-defined monoculture. They call for women to be raped, Blacks to be lynched, black women to be both raped and lynched. And insist that they are in favor of racial equality.

They shriek, and insist that reasonable tones in response are hate.

They are, collectively, useless.

And they are not a monoculture. Not even a bit. Many who identify with this group are not like this – they are actually great people who share a goal, and not a method. These are people who are not useless. The problem is that by allowing the haters to define the lines, good people get caught on the wrong side. Good people who do have the ability to disagree, rationally. Who do think. Who are not filled with hate.

If only we could find a way to silence the shrieking of the idiots, those good people could take back their movement, take back their politics, and we might just all get moving forward again.

It’s a nice dream.

To The Dallas Sniper(s)…

To The Dallas Sniper(s)…

Well done. You managed to take a bad situation and make it worse, and in the process, drag a bunch of others down with you. So, kudos.

How? Well, the DPD is being very circumspect about the details about the suspects, including the dead one, but some things have come out that will make everyone, especially police officers, draw certain conclusions.

Conclusion #1: The Shooter(s) Are Probably Not White
The DPD won’t confirm any details, including sex and race. This tends to mean that you are ‘of color’. Why? Because if this was a white guy, there would be no incentive to hide the information. Whites are not known for riots and semi-violent to violent protests when one of us is killed. A century ago, maybe. But not for the past 50 years or so. So there is that. The comments about wanting to kill white cops is also something of a give-away.

Conclusion #2: The Shooter(s) Are Connected to BLM
The dead sniper said that was not the case, but we all know that perception defines reality, and that will be the perception. Sorry. The fact that the shooter(s) targeted cops who were at the site of a BLM rally will draw a connection between the shooter(s) and the movement. And no matter how much any suspects taken alive say that they are not affiliated, the line is still there. After all, how many people still post the ‘to a wounded soldier’ Christmas card thing…or the ‘Facebook will start charging’ thing? People believe what they want to believe, and no amount of fact will change that. So, for some (maybe even for a lot) of people, the Black Lives Matter movement just killed 5 cops.

Conclusion #3: The Shooter(s) Made Things Worse For Minorities
Yup. Because, just like the above, the reality doesn’t matter, only the perception. So, because of all the above, there is a real chance that more minorities will not be given the benefit of the doubt when faced with a tense situation. Because of the fear of more reprisals, there is a real chance that the police will hesitate to act in minority communities. Because of all of this, the violence will continue. And more people will die.

So, well done. You managed to take a bad situation and just make it so much worse.

In Response To ‘Common Sense Gun Laws’

In Response To ‘Common Sense Gun Laws’

Summary: No such animal.

Well, not exactly. There can be some common sense that is not an infringement on the 2nd Amendment, but so far it seems like that is the land beyond the fields we know. Inaccessible and alien. But there is a place for regulation that is at once smart, effective, and not placing an excessive burden on anyone.

Let me get one thing out of the way – the absolute nonsensical suggestion that we ‘ban anyone ever investigated by the FBI for terrorism’ thing. First, investigated is not convicted. We do not punish people for being suspected of crime. Except sexual or racial ones, but that is another post (preview – it’s total bullshit leftard assholes doing it, and they need to grow the fuck up). All it takes to be on that investigation list is an anonymous phone call claiming that person X has started talking about jihad, and you are concerned. That’s all. Bang, investigated. Even if all that consists of is a phone call to the local PD to see if there is anything to it. It’s still a file, still an investigation. Those advocating this seem to fail to understand that simple reality. Likewise, the no fly/terror watch list. Two lists, both easy be added to, and nigh impossible to be removed from. The Star Chamber has no place in America, despite the President using it to sanction assassinations of American citizens.

We can be better than that.

So what do I propose? It is simple, and breaks down into 3 tiers, and one dealer/manufacturer tier. A mere 4 points. I think it is simple, effective, and mostly foolproof. Yes, I know the universe is constantly inventing better fools (see Oberlin College, Mizzou, etc.), but this is both specific enough to work, and general enough to deal with new developments and information. It even scales. So here is what I think would work… (more…)

Another Violent Weekend

Another Violent Weekend

It lessens the whole thing to add ‘another’ doesn’t it?

Good. It is supposed to. While the world of social media loses their collective shit over two events, the killings continue in Chicago. Three people were killed, 16 wounded in shootings from 6PM and 4:10AM CDT Saturday 6/11/16 into Sunday, 6/12/16. That makes 270 homicides YTD.

But the news is about a singer from The Voice, and a terrorism incident at a nightclub in Orlando.

Christina Grimmie was a contestant on The Voice in 2014, and was, by all accounts, a talented singer (I don’t watch the show, or listen to pop, so I’d not heard of her). My initial reaction, based on the photo the news showed (being across the room, and the volume being off) was that she was Michelle Chamuel, a singer also on The Voice, who a cousin of mine knows fairly well. She was killed by a deranged fan.

The attack at the Orlando nightclub, the Pulse, was terrorism, with a shooter killing (at this writing) 50, wounding at least 53 more. The shooter appears to have been Muslim, and that this was a direct attack on homosexuality, possibly with the knowledge/urging/support of ISIS. But it is early, and that may not be the case. It likely is, given the way it is being reported (as fact, not supposition, based on easily verifiable data).

In Chicago, Orlando, and the Grimmie shooting, people are already blaming the availability of firearms, mental illness, and Islam. To them I have only the following to say: (more…)