Tag Archives: amendment

The NRA shoots logic

What we need: Laws that prohibit or restrict assault weapons, handguns and high-capacity magazines.

Canada, a gun-loving country, has gun control a lot like this. Citizens are allowed to own all the rifles and shotguns that they want. This just in: The universe has not imploded in Canada. You’ll no doubt be amazed to know they have lower rates of gun violence and murders than the United States.

Today I attempt a short bit of logic to rebut the nonsensical sound bites offered ad nauseam by the NRA.

The Second Amendment:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
–The version ratified by the U.S. Congress

Yes, there was more than one version. In addition to the one above there was a version ratified by the States and authenticated by Thomas Jefferson, then Secretary of State. Capitalization and a comma differed between the two versions. (Source: Wikipedia.)

I have two points to make. Since I’ve talked about this before, I’ll be brief and do it using less than 600 words.

Continue reading →

Mississipi makes a great choice

Well, there goes tonight’s blog post. For once I’m happy to be sent packing back to the drawing board…

Mississippi voters have shocked the shit out of me and both sides of the controversial “personhood” issue. With 64% of precincts reporting, the measure was soundly defeated by a margin of 57% to 43%.

How refreshing to think of all the resources and monies that will no longer be expended fighting such a preposterous notion. Providers need jobs, children are hungry, and good people are dying because of a lack of access to health care. It feels downright decadent to forget all of that and instead turn our attention to philosophical matters and discussion of things like how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

For the record, as I’ve stated in the past on this blog, I’m no rabid abortionist. I consider most abortions failures of personal responsibility and planning. We’re becoming a nation of dumb people and we’re managing our reproductive organs about as well as we manage our checkbooks. I believe that abortion should be legal but with an extremely short window of opportunity.

However, to attempt to take the fight all the way to the moment of conception is clear lunacy and patently preposterous. Let us work to adopt a reasonable position based on sound science, a desire to cause no pain, and still maintain the rights of the individual in our state.

Good job, Mississippi. You done good.

Independence, Church and State

Celebrating the occasion with an independent wave

Today is Independence Day. This holiday commemorates the anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence.

The Declaration of Independence is an amazing document. Luckily, it is of sufficient strength to be impervious to being waved about for crass short-term political nefariousness from the likes of Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and others.

In honor of the occasion, I’d like to share a few thoughts, opinions and facts regarding the document that announced the thirteen American colonies had become independent states and how it came to be used (by some) as an instrument to denounce the concept of the separation between church and state.

The Declaration of Independence was primarily written by Thomas Jefferson, who was one member of a “Committee of Five” appointed by Congress to draft the declaration. That committee determine that Jefferson should write the first draft. That draft was written within 17 days between June 11 and June 28, 1776. After consulting with others, Jefferson produced another copy which was then presented to Congress on June 28, 1776.

The vote for independence took place on July 2, 1776. The resolution of independence was adopted with twelve affirmative votes and one abstention. (The delegates from New York were not authorized to vote for independence.) In a letter to his wife, John Adams predicted the date would become a great American holiday. Continue reading →

I am my kid’s marm

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Dear Dr. Laura:

How are you? I am fine.

Are you really surprised at the hubbub? Really? You are actually surprised??? I thought you were a little smarter than that. Aren’t you a Doctor?

In closing, I wish you well.

Take care and have a nice day!

Your pal,

For those not paying attention, Dr. Laura Schlessinger (henceforth referred to only as Dr. Laura for my spelling sanity) dropped the N-bomb on her national radio program something like 11 times in a chat with a single caller.


The firestorm that resulted led to her quitting her radio program. Here are some recent quotes from Dr. Laura (in no particular order) regarding the incident:

“If you’re that hypersensitive about colour and don’t have a sense of humour, don’t marry out of your race.”

“I want my 1st Amendment rights back, which I can’t have on radio without the threat of attack on my advertisers and stations.”

“I articulated the N-word all the way out – more than one time. And that was wrong. I’ll say it again – that was wrong.”

Dr. Laura was attempting to make some sort of esoteric point about how it’s acceptable for black people to use the N-word but not for whites. Well played, Dr. Laura. I think you proved the point only too well. If that’s what you wanted then you did a good job.

And what’s it to you? I mean, do you feel left out? Why the great umbrage about something like that? Do you lose a lot of sleep because you can’t run around dropping N-bombs all the time? Girl, you need to get your priorities straight!

I can understand the point she was making even if I don’t agree with it. Are white people being deprived because they can’t use the word, too? Oh the social injustice!

I have one quibble for you, Dr. Laura. It’s about your “first amendment rights” as you put it. Oh my, how dramatic! You apparently have a flair for histrionics. I’ll try to make this very short and to the point:

Dr. Laura, your first amendment right to free speech has not been impinged.

We Americans tend to think of free speech as a very beautiful thing and it certainly can be. It is one of our most important and fundamental rights. However, free speech can also be ugly. If you don’t believe me, go check out Craigslist sometime. You’ll see a very ugly side of humanity.

True. There are some limits on free speech. For example, you can’t yell “fire” in a crowded movie theater. (If it makes you happy though, please know that you still can yell “movie” in a crowded fire station if you want.) You also can’t libel, slander or incite violence. These sort of restrictions seem pretty reasonable to me.

Additionally, your right to free speech doesn’t guarantee that won’t be any consequences from you exercising that right. Advertisers also have freedom of speech and freedom of choice. They don’t have to continue to support you. Your audience (and even the general public) also have rights.

As far as I can tell, everyone’s rights here are working just fine. Dr. Laura, you got to shoot off your mouth as is your right. Your rights are not being impinged, however. Are you in prison? Charged with any crime? No.

Can employers fire employees who exercise their rights to free speech? Of course! It happens all the friggin’ time. Choice and consequence. You know, now that I think about it, it’s almost like society needs some sort of airlock. 🙂 At the end of the day all we have here is just a garden variety incident of “poor me” and “my rights have been violated” and “I’m sorry.” Tough noogies. Deal with the consequences of your actions.

I’d like to close with a little Dr. Laura trivia.

  • Did you know that Dr. Laura’s Ph.D. is in the field of physiology?
  • Did you know that Dr. Laura married a dentist when she was 25, and had at least two extramarital affairs before they were divorced? (Source.)
  • Did you know that Dr. Laura, who disapproves of divorce, has also been divorced?
  • Did you know that Dr. Laura  had an affair with a married man?
  • Did you know that Dr. Laura, who disapproves of pornography, was the subject in some nude pictures which were eventually released to the internet? Dr. Laura at first lied and said the pictures were not of her. She later admitted they were.

Here’s a couple interesting Dr. Laura links:

Laura Schlessinger – Wikipedia
Know Your Right-Wing Speakers: Laura Schlessinger

And here’s my favorite Dr. Laura video clip. 🙂

Link to video just in case YouTube is hosed.