THE SKY IS FALLING!

Today the FCC voted 3 to 2 in favor of reversing regulations put in place just over 2 years ago. Just as with any attempt to repeal the ACA, the left is going overboard on their predictions for what will be next. This time, rather than MILLIONS WILL DIE, it’s THE INTERNET AS WE KNOW IT IS DEAD. Personally, I am a fan of as little government as possible, and this, so far, has proven to be the best course of action as long as I’ve watched. Health care existed long before the ACA, and will exist after it, just not funded by tax dollars. In the early 1970’s, my parents had my Sister, later I came along, then my Brother. I don’t remember ever hearing about my parents having to pay off their bills from the hospital from this, nor was it horrible if I chipped a tooth, got sick, one of us got hurt, we just went to the Dr/Dentist, our insurance covered a huge portion of the bill, and we paid the rest, normally out of pocket, not being billed. For example, I had to have my wisdom teeth removed around 2003, and while the procedure was very expensive, needing an oral surgeon and anesthesiologist, I paid under $100 for the entire thing, including the pain killer I was given for the first few days. Fast forward to 3 years ago, I needed 2 teeth extracted, no surgeon, but I was knocked out, and I was billed, after insurance, over $500. The only real change, the ACA passed in 2012, and as many predicted, costs went up for the consumer.

Now, look at 2015, when Net Neutrality was enacted. At the time, we didn’t have any option but a small cable company, but we paid about $30 a month to our ISP, now it’s almost $60. Regulations put a burden on the provider, and they will always pass costs onto the consumer. Yes, it’s possible that ISP’s may decide they don’t want to make it easy to watch Netflix, or that they don’t like certain websites, and I don’t agree with that practice, but the market should decide, not government, what a business may or may not do. What if the provider notices that between 5 and 8 at night, their speed is killed, and most customers are on Netflix. They see that they don’t have the ability to handle that traffic, so they limit speed to compensate, choosing to limit www.netflix.com so as to not burden those working, or doing other things. What if a college is their own ISP and chooses to limit Netflix so the library and other public terminals don’t see a slow down? In this case I’m for it. The common thread, their customers should be who decides what happens. In the first case, their customers complain, the company gives the equivalent of a shrug, their customers start switching to another provider. This ISP sees their actions losing them money, they either reverse the change, or they suffer and eventually go out of business. Think back to AOL. They censored e-mail messages critical of them, blocked some competitors’ sites/apps, and more. They are now gone, with only the holdouts with aol.com e-mail addresses as proof they once ruled the internet. Comcast decided they wanted to limit Netflix so users had to use their VOD service, now customers, instead of whining to the government and getting them to force Comcast to do what they want, will just need to switch. The advent of fiber and other technologies, simply put, means no more “we’re your only choice” for customers. The second option? The college says they are giving free internet access to help with course work, with Net Neutrality in place, the government tells them they aren’t allowed to block or limit sites even though they don’t charge, students force a college that gave them free connections to reverse a good practice. Without Net Neutrality, the college can say “we’re giving you free internet to use to study, you want Netflix, you can pay for the connection” and the students can whine and moan, but the college keeps a good practice.

Simply put, deregulation is a good thing in my mind. It always starts small, by the government simply getting out of businesses’ way, but look at the two industries most affected by past deregulation, telephone (not cell phones) and power. Growing up we had no choice but to use Southwestern Bell and TXU. Our bill could go up without notice, and they just grinned and said their costs went up. Deregulation happened, and now we have one company running the infrastructure and many running the service side. SBT, ATT, and others pay the line company, just as TXU, Reliant, and others do with Oncor in North Texas, and then sell that to consumers. As they have to compete, and the delivery company doesn’t have to worry about pricing and such, both sides benefit. TXU sells at a price low enough to entice people away from the other guys, just as SBT or ATT does, and they make some profit in the process.

Well, cable TV/Internet is the dinosaur in this scenario. Fiber is still very new on the scene, and DSL or other telephone delivery options are dying, as they should, as a technology. Sadly, only one cable provider is available in an area, for my area it’s a tiny company, while the majority of my county is Charter with a portion of it being Time Warner. As there is no competition other than Satellite/Internet for TV, they’re pretty safe. They lose my $40 or $50 a month TV plan, they still get my money for internet, which I need to watch my new TV provider. Google is working to come into new areas with Google Fiber, but having to install all the infrastructure, they’re putting out a lot of money, so they aren’t really competitive. They also are doing the same as cable companies, charging based on your speed. If Net Neutrality happens the way it’s cheerleaders want, they’ll all be told you can only charge one price, and have one package. Do you think they’ll choose the highest speed at the lowest cost? Of course not, they’ll find out the lowest speed they can get away with delivering, and charge as much as possible for it.

Yes, there will be growing pains, such as Congress having the ability to tell the FCC they can’t remove a regulatory and financial burden from companies, or those companies deciding to limit what is the most taxing on their servers, but rather than tell the government to “make it better,” why not look to the Elon Musk’s of the world and ask for a better option. In a climate so totally controlled and locked down by the government, ingenuity is stifled. Why come up with a better way to do things when you’ll not be able to afford to sell it? With this move, Musk is free to come up with a better option and sell it cheaper, which means the other guys start trying to beat that tech and sell it cheaper. The free market works people, it always has. Health care before the ACA was as cheap as possible, because Aetna knew if they didn’t treat me right, I’d switch to BCBS or another provider. ATT did me wrong on my cell plan, so I went to Sprint for 20 years, until they did too, and I moved to another provider.

Aside from wanting the government out of as much of my life as possible, I can also attest to the fact that it works not only socially, as I don’t like being told I must buy an approved health care plan, which is all but useless, but also the plans cost less, and have the needed amenities. Net Neutrality being gone means your provider must now earn your continued business, the crutch of “regulations require us to do this” is gone, and now they have to prove they’re going to do what the customer wants.

I’ve said it on every thread and story I see about health care or Net Neutrality, socialism fails every time, not because the idea is flawed, but because mankind is, and whenever you have anything socially controlled, someone at the top decides that because they’re running the show, they deserve more. Huxley warned us about dependence on technology, while Orwell warned of socialism and big brother. Sadly, both were right. We’re now so hooked on our devices for everything, that we believe the socialists when they tell us we have a “right” to be equal, so they regulate the crap out of an industry, while of course none of the rules apply to those running things. They don’t apply to the “leaders” because, simply, the “all animals are equal, some animals are more equal than others” mantra has become entrenched into the minds of those in power.

We need to get a completely new group of Representatives and Senators, and keep them as short a time as possible, to avoid that mindset, and we need to tell those selling us our daily fix of entertainment that we can get along without them, showing them that if they want us to pay, they need to make it very enticing. I’m perfectly willing to go back to books and music for a year or so, to show the Comcasts of the world they aren’t entitled to my money, only to sell a product, and hope I buy it. I’m just sadly fighting an uphill battle where the stone slips every time against a population of people half my age, dead set that I’m wrong, and evil for not agreeing with them, in fact some days, trying to inject common sense and logic isn’t preferable to pushing that rock and failing every time.

And yet again, the reaction to everything is…..

We saw it with the ACA and now we see it with Net Neutrality, and even more telling in the push to rule the U.S. as tyrants is shown in Alabama as what the left wants is demanded at all costs.

Starting last November, as we saw in 2000, only louder, was an instant demand to do away with the Electoral College, which would allow NYC, LA and a few other cities to decide for the entire country every four years. When the GOP led House and Senate began introducing bills (that failed until recently) which would repeal the ACA, especially after the election which gave the GOP the House, Senate and White House, the screaming was intense that they “weren’t allowed” to do it.

Tuesday’s election in Alabama is rife with corruption, such as a city with barely 1000 people seeing 26,000 votes cast, yet any attempt to get the fraud out, and allow the people of Alabama to elect who they want is called “voter suppression” or “denying the voters who they wanted.” Videos are all over social media where people admit they came from out of state to vote, but as the left wants Jones, they scream that it’s over, get over it, let them have what they stole.

Move to Net Neutrality, which is NOT going to be the FCC doing anything than taking the reigns off, and they are already emailing out “the FCC voted, let’s overrule it.” That’s the exact subject of one I just received, blatantly saying “let’s change what they did legally to what we want.” I’ve said it many times, but I’m likely nowhere near done as people don’t listen when the message isn’t “here’s everything you want” so I’ll keep saying it. The internet was around before 2015 and no ISP banned sites or gouged on price based on what sites a customer visited, at least not in the U.S. What didn’t happen though, was what we’re seeing on sites like Twitter or Facebook, where conservatives are targeted and “shadow banned” or outright banned from the site, because liberals report them for “hate speech” while ignoring people actively calling for assaults and worse. With the regulations in place, Twitter is free to stop me saying I’m pro-life because some snowflake decides that’s “a violation of their first amendment rights” or some other idiocy. With the regulations gone, the FCC is not going to just say “good luck” and leave, but rather will do what they were created for, actually working to police censorship and abuse, which comes almost completely from the left side of the aisle.

But of course, any deviation from the liberal mantra is cause for your death. I have been with my company for 5 years, and in that time I’ve learned one thing, I don’t discuss much at all at work. I’m fairly sure that 99% of those I work with voted against President Trump, and are in complete agreement with all that the DNC says, as I’ve been hearing nothing but “now they’ll charge you more to use Netflix” and the like. Only one person has spoken in defense of the decision to shrink the government, and he was all but laughed out of the building. So, I’ll say it one more time before I end, ending “net neutrality” is NOT going to mean that your bill will be 10 times higher because you want to watch Netflix, you will not be censored for being a non-white non-male. This is not the end of the world, we had internet for years before this, now we’re just going back to it, which will be a good thing!

The not so new attitude about everything

It’s been over a year since millions of people collectively demanded that America not follow the Constitution, and just hand the Presidency to the person they wanted. When that didn’t happen, we began to see a massive uptick in acts of violence and charges of bigotry, racism, sexism, and other name-calling, in an effort to get their way. Sadly, we saw a prime example of what they’re willing to do to get their way just days ago, when, funded by the mega rich Democrat donors, Doug Jones won the Alabama senate seat. Even before Tuesday, many were already talking about voter fraud, as there was a lot of chatter about “volunteers” being brought in from out of state, yet there is little chance to prove it after a court order requiring digital records to be kept was stayed, allowing those records to be destroyed. This, of course, is just more that is being used to argue for voter fraud as the left screams about their “victory.”

From net neutrality, sexual harassment/assault claims, health care, and elections, we’ve seen mountains of proof that the left is no longer content to simply call those who don’t agree with them names, they are now actively working to force the world to do as they want, and damn anyone who dares suggest that as they’re the minority, they should not get to demand that. What is being ignored, or worse, actively censored, is what we need to discuss, that the left is stealing elections, forcing government bloat, and more. Two simple items that are happening in DC will show this, with a very simple argument.

The ACA mandate repeal, part of the tax bill recently passed, is being heralded as Republicans “taking away healthcare” while others wail that “millions will die” or that “Republicans want the poor to die.” And of course the standard “this is a tax cut for the rich” argument. But none of those are true, as always. If I had a product that I required you to purchase, that would be wrong, which is what the ACA did. The government created “health care plans” that the government then sold, and required all American citizens to purchase, from them. Aside from the lies that I could keep my plan or Dr. if I liked them (I did, and I didn’t get to keep them,) or the fact that I personally know someone who was told they were not eligible for a waiver, and the only Dr. who would take them on an ACA plan was 100 MILES AWAY, the ACA was and always will be a horrible thing. Why else do you think we “had to pass it to find out what’s in it?” Well, the Republicans finally got together and passed the tax cut, and included a repeal of the ACA mandate. Note, they are NOT repealing the ACA, as much as many people want them to, they simply removed the mandate, meaning if you choose not to have health insurance, you are no longer fined (taxed.) I pointed this out in many social media threads only to be told I’m “ignorant of the facts.” Many of these threads I simply said “hey, you’re pro-choice, so you should be happy I get to choose,” only to be blocked or insulted, or in some cases, threatened. But one did seem intelligent, so I posted a screenshot of the actual verbiage, showing it’s only the mandate being repealed, and just like that, the intelligent argument died and I was a “horrible racist bigot who wants millions to die just to give the rich a tax cut.” And people wonder why I weep for the future.

Net “neutrality:” Just over two years ago, the FCC implemented a group of regulations to ensure “net neutrality,” and now that they are considering undoing that, the world is losing it’s collective mind of the “end of freedom.” I don’t even try to argue in those threads, as no one there will even tolerate my “ignorance” when I point out that there is no way for “all data to be equal” and that regulations increase costs, and thus, what we pay for a product. Simply put though, why should all data be equal? Not all sites are of equal importance, or take as much resources to display. Let’s take a few for example, Netflix/Hulu, e-mail, Twitter, and any software used by schools. Netflix/Hulu and other video streaming services take MUCH more bandwidth as they are transmitting much more data, while e-mail and Twitter require FAR LESS, so you don’t want those to be equal, as that means slowing down the bigger services, not speeding up the little ones. If you look at the last one, when compared to video streaming, e-mail, or social media, you can easily argue they are more important than entertainment. Why do you want what your child’s school (or yours if you are in college) to be equal to entertainment? I don’t, I want the options that require high bandwidth to get it, and those that don’t to get what they need.

Of course the argument always returns to “you just want to limit people,” which I don’t. We had health insurance before 2012, what happened was that many plans were deemed “bad” so they went away, and of course, costs went up. We heard screaming of “they want people to die” just as we always hear about “forcing women into back alley abortions” when any attempt is made to remove funding for planned parenthood. This is no different, we had internet before 2015, and honestly it was better than before net neutrality, as Netflix, YouTube, Hulu and so on could be prioritized, not forced to be equal to all other items. No ISP is going to decide they don’t like Netflix and block it, as they will lose customers right and left and go out of business. ISP’s will also not decide that you must pay $100 for a certain website, as the same will happen. Regulations, while not always bad, do cause costs to go up, so removing them isn’t always the death blow that is predicted.

Finally the “tax cut for the rich” argument, as it’s really it’s own thing. Sarah Sanders, who is either adored or despised, dropped the mic on the press corps when asked about this by talking about 10 reporters who always go out for drinks together, and pay based on their income, until the bartender gives them a cut in prices, based on what they pay. The top payers get the biggest cut, monetarily, and those who pay little or nothing, get less or nothing, because X% of a small number is a small number, and X% of nothing is nothing. So, tired of being vilified, those paying the most decide to drink at home, and suddenly, the remaining people can’t cover the bill at all. The tax cuts being passed (hopefully) will result in people like Bill Gates, who pay MASSIVE taxes, to see a larger savings when it comes to dollars and cents, because they pay more, as opposed to me, because I don’t pay what they do. The argument is flawed because other than socialism, there is not a way to pass tax cuts and exclude “the rich,” although ironically the Democrats harping on the “rich” getting more are themselves in the bracket to benefit most, although many also don’t pay their taxes. The last time this happened, I made one comment, and of course was castigated horribly for my ignorance, but I’ll say it again here. When you do your taxes the first time after the tax cuts are passed, if you don’t pay less, tell me, and I’ll happily change my mind and join you in demanding the cuts be reversed. You won’t see a single person who takes the challenge win, as they will see their taxes go down, unless of course they pay nothing, because of course 100% of zero is zero, but I tend to ignore them on any tax argument on principle.

So, to summarize, no millions upon millions will not die because I am no longer forced to pay for insurance I can’t even use. No, Verizon will not suddenly block all entertainment sites unless you pay $1000 more a month, and no, the tax cuts are not just for the rich. The Democrats depend on hyperbole and media frenzy, because simply put, their arguments are flawed and false, and they can’t stand people not obeying them.

Roy, Reciprocity and Rosie

I was live on Twitter last night about the reciprocity lies and propaganda being spread by the left, but as always, they just keep giving me ways to prove the idiots they are. Well, as we’re used to by now, they just keep one upping themselves on the meter of “how blatantly hypocritical and idiotic can I sound today.” Yesterday I read an article where Rosie O’Donnell said she doesn’t feel like anyone should need a gun, unless they’re a cop, as she told a story about her girlfriend “springing up ready to shoot” when they heard what sounded like a break in. Now, while I disagree with her, this story was her saying she doesn’t think anyone needs a firearm, but today, I find the image below, where she flat out says “I don’t care if it’s your right, you don’t get to.” Simply put, we have liberals today who are so convinced of their “rights” that the actual rights enshrined in the Bill of Rights are ignored and trampled on. Your “right” to not be offended is non-existent, and I guarantee, when someone robs you, or worse, you’ll wish you had a firearm. As for “demanding change,” why don’t you read the U.S. Constitution, there’s a method there. You won’t succeed, but you’ll earn a lot of respect for doing it right, as opposed to the contempt and pity you earn with statements like this one.

The issue here, though, is that we have elected officials who firmly agree with her. Safe behind their gated communities, walled off homes, and armed guards, they believe that the rank and file American public should be forcibly disarmed. Just after the Sutherland Springs shooting, former VP Biden was on TV and said that the man who used his AR-15 to stop the killer, should not have been allowed to carry said weapon, meaning that more people in that church would be dead. Although, keep in mind that this is also the man who, while arguing that no one should be allowed to own a pistol or rifle, said that you just fire through the door with a shotgun, to “scare off” would be intruders.


Their hypocrisy isn’t limited to just the public figures and high profile officials, as we’ve not heard much from Senator Menendez after the jury decided his corruption was OK, but he’s back in the public eye, now stating that any licensed person who enters New Jersey while armed, for any reason, should face a minimum of five years in prison. He doesn’t care that you can get lost on the highway and have to “enter” the state so you can u-turn and go back, you are in danger of being thrown in prison if you enter with a legally owned and carried weapon, because NJ has decided that they are the only state that knows how to handle LAW ABIDING CITIZENS who exercise their rights. Well, Senator, reciprocity goes both ways. If New Jersey officially states that they will not honor any concealed carry license, then no drivers or marriage licenses from that state should be valid in any other. Maybe when New Jersey residents are told their licenses are all invalid outside their home state, they’ll wake up and demand that their state FOLLOW THE CONSTITUTION, or they’ll just not leave that state again and we’ll be rid of them. The saddest part is that they openly admit their hypocrisy in cases like this. They scream states’ rights when it comes to Concealed Carry Reciprocity, but demand all states honor what they say is valid. I have personally told people that if a state decides they won’t honor my Texas license to carry, then Texas should decide not to honor marriage or drivers licenses from that state, only to be told I’m an “ignorant bigot who doesn’t understand.” I then pulled up the dictionary definition of reciprocity, only to be told I had pulled up a hacked site. When I said OK, you pull up the dictionary, they started back at the start, with their “bigot” or “racist” accusations. Unlike the idiot at my community college, this one didn’t grab me to “ensure their right to be heard” when I walked away. Although the look on their face said they wanted to hit me when I wrote “I pity the stupid, and you’re their king” and showed it to them. It was petty, but it felt good.


Finally, the hypocrisy is on display for the world with the Roy Moore sideshow. Judge Moore served in one way or another for 40 YEARS, yet when he runs for the U.S. Senate, suddenly a celebrity lawyer and multiple women finally go to the news, not a law enforcement agency, with allegations that things happened 30 years ago. While we have pictures of Al Franken groping a journalist as she sleeps, or creepy Joe Biden on video countless times, the mere allegations are enough to have liberals from New York to New Delhi demanding Roy Moore step down and all but be exiled to the desert. Today there are many links all over my social media to a story where one of the women admits she “altered” the inscription in the yearbook, while also claiming it’s still true, the “I made up this evidence, but that’s it, he still did it, don’t demand proof.” The same yearbook that for almost 3 weeks, the celebrity lawyer has refused to let anyone see as she demands we all accept her expert has analyzed it and it’s valid. With the admission of falsifying evidence, and the other proof that others have lied, this is when the lawyer and all of the women must be told all evidence will be made public, all testimony will be made under oath to a sitting Judge, and when one side is proven correct, the Judge will decide what happens. That way we either get to see a Judge charge these women with attempting to influence an election in ways other than voting, or we see them slink away, whining about how no one believes them, ignoring that they give no reason to.


As I said many times in this post and have said many times before today, the issue boils down to hypocrisy and ego. The DNC is so assured of their own superiority and infallibility that they ignore that their “rights” do not negate our rights. Antifa scream that they’re “fighting fascism” while they use fascist tactics to silence all dissent. The DNC screams that they’re working “for women” as more and more Democrats are proven to be sexual predators. All of this needs to stop and there are simple solutions. If you accuse someone and say you have evidence, give it to law enforcement, don’t just hold it up as press conferences, then say no to anyone who wants to look at it. If you are going to give speeches about protecting women, make sure you aren’t a predator yourself, or surrounded by them.

Congress is full of people who have been in their office for so long they’ve decided they are no longer citizens and servants, but royalty, and we must remind them they are not. All 535 of them work for us, and we need only take their power away, by voting them out, to send a message. Less than 1% of those in the House and Senate should be there today, yet we have 20, 30, and 40+ year office holders, hell bent on maintaining their cushy job, where they give a speech, tell someone they won’t be getting your support, and submit a bill you know will fail once in a while, and collect your pay. No one in this country is above the law, and we need to prove that. I personally feel that Franken shouldn’t just be allowed to resign, but he should be charged and tried for his crimes. Conyers should be in jail, and Clinton and her cronies, including Obama, should be locked away for all of the crimes of the past 8 years. Who knows, if high profile, rich, people start going to jail for their crimes, maybe those who replace them will think twice before saying “we have to pass it to find out what’s in it,” or “millions will die because of this bill.” I know it’s a long shot, but I can dream, right?

All for me, none for you

I’ve written about this many times, and the arguments always devolve into the people demanding special treatment defending their “right” to it with arguments that would make a spider monkey tell them they’re idiots. The current thread is about the current case going before SCOTUS, regarding the baker who was sued into bankruptcy over refusing to bake a wedding cake for a gay wedding. This baker did not say gays were not welcome in their business, only that they would not bake the wedding cake, which in their opinion, sanctioned the wedding, something their faith would not let them do. Naturally, the couple in question sued for having their “rights” violated, eventually causing the bakery to close and the family to lose their livelihood. Fast forward a bit, and we now have a gay coffee shop owner going on a profanity laced tirade, kicking Christians out of the shop. They were not asking the shop to cater or otherwise take part in anything other than the same business transactions everyone else was a part of, yet these legal experts that not that far in the past that screamed about rights, are now silent.

Well, I’m not a lawyer, I’m just a guy with a degree in history and a certification to teach secondary social studies, which includes U.S. Government, and there is no right to shop and buy from who you want. Business owners can legally deny anyone service, and only the free market can legally respond, by patrons deciding if they wish to continue shopping there. The First Amendment, simply, protects you from Congress passing a law restricting your speech or ability to exercise your faith (or lack thereof.)

While the current SCOTUS makeup is a pretty even split, I believe they will side with the baker, and hopefully force this couple to repay every dime their first suit stole from the business. If I had my way, when they rant about their rights, I would then simply say “So, you support bankrupting the gay coffee shop owner who kicked out Christians for being Christian, and not even for asking for a special service?” When they say that’s not the same thing, I’d agree, the Christians’ request was to purchase was was readily available in the shop, something the baker said they would not stop anyone from doing, it was not a request for a special service for a private event.

The long an short of this is very simple, you have a right to shop where you want, and the businesses have the right to say, “sorry, we don’t wish to provide that service.” But these lawsuits have never been about equal rights, it’s about forcing conservatives to accept as normal, that which we believe is not. Marriage is a social construct, and I personally believe the Government should have NO PART IN IT! You go to the religious leader of your choice and get married. Government can allow you to show someone who financially depends on you as a dependent, that’s it. If the wife makes the most, she is head of house, if it’s two women, the higher salary is head of house, there is no “spouse” just a “dependent.” But, sadly, this argument is also shouted down as “not allowing homosexuals the same rights as heterosexuals,” when in fact it is, as it strips the “rights” one group wants from everyone, and is far more fair, but liberals aren’t about fairness, they are simply about forcing you to bend to their will, and they will soon find, the average American conservative is tired of bending, we now stand for what we believe. If SCOTUS rules for the lesbian couple, I will demand they rule against the coffee shop, you can’t have it both ways.

Society is at a tipping point, and I can’t say we’ll tip the right way

Just 40 years ago, regardless of your stance on politics, race, money, or religion, people were generally able to exist alongside anyone. There were arguments, just as there are today, but they didn’t end with divorce, or calls for arrest for some imagined crime, they just ended with an agreement to disagree, and not revisit the topic. Even 25 years ago, this was still the case, as I can remember my parents and I having that experience with friends. We may have been upset and avoided the other person all we could for a time, but we generally didn’t dispose of someone for a simple disagreement. During my high school years, when these conversations happened, they were either short lived or lasted months or years, as both parties would go back and research then come back and keep working to bring the other person to their point of view. Many of those I call friends vehemently disagree with me on many topics, from healthcare to immigration and more, and we still call the other a friend, unlike so many today.

During the election of 2016, many people became incensed at others for not agreeing with them on who to vote for, candidates had people insulting and demeaning others over the simple fact that you will never find one candidate that everyone will agree with. From George Washington to Donald Trump, every President has had people who wanted someone else for the office, yet they all were chosen to fill the job for their time. Sadly, today we see violence happening in the name of “resisting a fascist regime” from a group that is using Nazi logos and names, and tactics straight from Mussolini’s or Hitler’s playbook. The simple statement that “when your argument requires you to assault those who disagree, it has no value in any sense” perfectly sums up all of the groups who have rioted to stop what they don’t want. However, if you look at eras in the past, you will rarely find the “I don’t like that, so you can’t do it” attitude, you may see protests, signs outside a business or school, and chants being repeated to bring people to one side or the other, but rarely will you see violence erupt over a mere invitation of a speaker, or not wanting a statue removed from a city park.

This attitude, sadly, has been growing for the last 20 to 25 years, and seems to be all but unstoppable now. From the 1990’s and the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, to today’s demand that the military, and in fact, the federal government, “must” pay for all manner of things, society is at a tipping point. It is my hope that, over the course of this, I can highlight areas were simply walking away, or changing how a topic is approached, may help stop the flight toward anarchy or worse.

I have rights!
The go to argument today, it seems, is that everything is a right, or the denial of someone else’s rights, to stop an argument and “win” the day. Just pointing out that something is or isn’t included in the Bill of Rights is a trigger to call someone racist, sexist, bigot, or nazi, after which all bets are off and the person the group crying hates is instantly a demon from hell to be killed on the spot. Sadly, when the inverse of that argument happens, they defend the person “denying a right” as having the right to so, completely ignoring history and that they so recently argued completely against their new stance.

Just over two years ago (April 2015), a couple in Oregon sued a local baker for not making a cake for their wedding. The bakery in question is owned and run by a Christian couple who said that to do so would violate their faith. Rather than let the free market take over, and see who the public supports, the couple in question sued, eventually winning the day, and forcing the bakery to close. The argument that a business cannot deny service, else they are guilty of discrimination, is one that has been debated for decades, yet until 2015, people didn’t sue, they simply told their friends and family, and let the market decide if the business was guilty or not. If the community disagreed, the business would see sales decline until they either change their policy or close their doors for good. (1)

 That same year in Indiana, a pizza parlor was sued by a gay couple for not catering a wedding. Granted, this story produced a seemingly endless stream of humor over any couple wanting pizza for a wedding, but it shined a light on a new law in Indiana, which the restaurant owner said allowed a business to refuse service on religious grounds. In the Oregon case, the bakery was closed and a family’s ability to support themselves was stripped from them, over a simple matter of a cake, while in Indiana, the community rallied around the business and raised money for them to keep them open after being sued. (2)

On the opposite end of the spectrum from the examples above, just two years later (October 2017,) a coffee shop in Seattle, run by a gay man, saw a video go viral, as the owner went on a verbal tirade against Christians, as he kicked them out of his shop, and was very profane in doing so. Using the examples above, one might expect the damaged party (the customer) to sue and force the business owner to capitulate or close their doors, but this one saw nothing of the sort. The ACLU quickly got involved in the first two, proclaiming loudly in both cases that the First Amendment meant that a business could not say their religious freedom trumps anyone else’s, while in the case of this coffee shop, they were silent, and the community saw nothing more than customers treated as if they had urinated on the counter while their heads spun on their necks. (3)

The sad part of this is that a mere 20 years ago, many businesses had signs that they catered to a small group or didn’t serve others. Most were considered jokes, as they read “We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone, at any time, for any reason, with or without explanation.” This was often cause for laughter, or just a decision to not patronize a business, and again, the market decided which businesses succeeded or failed. Granted, this scenario is largely geographic as you will always find areas of any country that hold either very liberal or very conservative views, and the community rarely sees challenges to this, as those who disagree don’t stay long, if they visit at all. Taken as an example, Nashville and Los Angeles are almost on different planets, as in Nashville you find a generally conservative community, raised on Bar-B-Que and beer, and country music, while Los Angeles is so diverse in what you find it could almost be a country on it’s own. From international food, to different cultures, to different religions and lifestyles, when someone from either city visits the other, culture shock is almost too mild a term to use.

These example show two things very clearly, one segment of society demands that no one disagree with them, no one is allowed to run their lives according to anything but what they allow you do, while their polar opposite simply avoid a business that is not in line with their views. Chic-Fil-A has been the target of many tirades and more for their policy of closing on Sunday, despite the policy stating it is to allow employees to spend time as they see fit with their families. When the CEO, Dan Cathy, was interviewed and stated that his personal belief that marriage is a sacred union of a man and woman, the media proclaimed for the world to hear, that the business was homophobic, despite having the quote showing this was Mr. Cathy’s personal opinion. The Robertsons of Duck Dynasty fame faced the same, as the patriarch of the family, and the other members, said their personal belief is that marriage is for a man and woman, and saw the series almost cancelled, despite it always showing the family praying over their meal, and it being obvious that they are a deeply religious family.

All of examples of both sides of this argument point out a massive difference in how the two sides of this situation handle themselves when they are faced with those who disagree. There is a wonderful quote, although who said it first is something attributed to many, but there is a segment of society that says if something offends them, no one may do it, while their inverse simply says if something offends them, they will avoid it. This is perfectly shown in the fact that a baker and pizza parlor were sued, while a coffee shop was not, when they refused service to customers completely opposed to their views. There are very few examples of something so offensive it should not be in polite society, that being vulgar language, pornography, other nudity or graphic displays of affection, as very few people want to see any couple, gay or not, all but having sex in public, or someone dressed in so little a doctor could perform a full physical exam without needing them to disrobe. A prime example is something heard from both sides in the late 1990’s, and even parodied in South Park’s episode entitled Tolerance Camp.

I was sitting with friends just a short time after graduating high school, a few of them openly homosexual, when a story came on the TV about a Gay Pride parade that facing complaints and even threats of charges for public indecency. Knowing our friends, no one was shy about voicing their opinions, as the video showed men in lingerie few women would even want to try on outside of a closed room, and worse. Oddly enough, at least by current standards, the few gay people at the table were the most upset, as they said, it painted homosexuals as being perverse and horrible people, and I agreed with them completely. Those at my table were among the nicest and most amazing people I have known. I joke that, if you get a flat in Texas, don’t worry, in about ten minutes four guys in a truck with tools and beer will be by to help, and everyone at that table would agree we were “those guys” as we would all stop to help anyone who needed it. Aside from asking those few people for clothing advice when I didn’t want my mother or sister to know about a surprise party, they were people to me, just people with expertise in an area I didn’t have, as are the rest, we all find something interesting, and pursue it, and come to the others when needed. But, sadly, today, we’ve seen a movement from one extreme on the political scale to demonize all who don’t believe as they do, and those being demonized are so marginalized that any argument to defend themselves only adds fuel to the fire.

Academia is no longer about academics
Growing up for most Americans, those in their very late 30’s or older, a bad grade was a prompt for your parents to have a conversation about your studies. A note from the teacher about how you were “acting out” was reason for the parents to either ground, or spank, or otherwise punish you. If you were spanked at school, you were spanked again when you got home. My own grades began to slip in high school due to my unwillingness to study, and my parents sat me down and explained why I needed to study. Being who I am, I found a way to “study” so I’d pass, but didn’t truly apply myself, otherwise I would be in a far different place in life today.

Today, however, we have students so assured of their “rights” that they claim discrimination for a failing grade when they didn’t show up, or demand “safe spaces” where they can ignore the world. and their parents are defending them. A cartoon published years ago shows two situations, both where the student had failed a test, where in one the parents ask the child to explain, and in the other, they angrily shout at the teacher to explain. Having gone to college to teach, as I love studying history and teaching, I first found that as I don’t coach any sport, I’m not able to find a teaching position, but also having substituted for several years, this attitude is slowly encroaching on even the most conservative of states and cities. I am thankful I never had to sit in on a conference where parents were told their child was failing, but I did hear students in the halls telling their friends how their parents would “make the teacher change the grade or they’d have them fired.” The attitude of your academic success is someone else’s responsibility teaches only that you need to complain to get your way, and leads to so many other problems in life that no one entering the workforce is able to handle.

I also remember in one class, where I only had one day and it was test-prep, students claiming their teacher allowed the use of iPods and the like when absent, but the teacher didn’t leave me anything stating this, so I told them no. I was accused of being a Draconian Tyrant, and explained that in actuality I was a Jeffersonian, in that I followed the rules unless they were amended by someone with that authority. The students actually began to question me about their test prep, it being an AP Government class, and I ended up getting a long term position from that teacher as a result. In this situation, thankfully, the students wanted to learn, and seeing that they had someone in the classroom who could help, jumped at the chance.

When I returned for my two weeks in the classroom, I lectured, answered questions and generally had a wonderful experience, as the students were bright, engaged, and eager to learn. In the down time, some asked me about various colleges, and other paths in life. I didn’t hold back, telling those who wanted to open an auto garage they should first go to trade school, then learn from a master while getting their business degree slowly, so they’d have little debt and gain experience and real world knowledge, and they were shocked that a teacher didn’t just say “go to college.” Others wanted careers where college was a must, and I told them about loans and such, and advised against debt where it could be avoided. A few of the other teachers cautioned me in this, saying that I could anger parents who wanted their child to attend college, but I will not lie to students and tell them a path that isn’t right for them is. A few parents complained that I was “advising their child that college was wrong,” and I explained that I actually had advised college would help, but that there was a path that would avoid much, if not all, of the normal debt, and was told “you’re lying to cover yourself.”

This shows the attitude so prevalent in the world today, that being “I’m right, don’t you dare say you didn’t do what I said, you’re wrong and must now suffer!” After that experience, I was ready to tell that school district not to call me, but a move negated that need, as well as entering my Junior year, where I was either waiting tables, delivering pizza, in class or asleep, so the situation was resolved, but I was saddened still that parents are so hell bent on their child going to college, regardless of the child’s desires, that they will attack anyone actually listening to the child and being honest.

The rise of the social justice warrior
In each example used so far, you see an attitude of “I’m right, do as a say” which has given rise to the SJW, or Social Justice Warrior. This person cares little for anything but getting their way, as they will sue a bakery for disagreeing, support a coffee shop for kicking out a customer who wasn’t asking for special treatment or service, and silence all dissent. In April of 2016, Milo Yiannopoulos and Steven Crowder were invited to speak at U Mass, by the college Republicans, at an event now known as The Triggering (4 and 4.) This was, by design, meant to challenge students’ positions on various topics, to get them to debate and discuss, and learn from each other. Sadly, it went exactly opposite to the plans, with students cursing and shouting down the speakers. The students, in this case, in an attempt to avoid being offended, managed to offend many more to a higher degree.

The simple fact is, today we have people on all sides of every issue that firmly believe in their own infallibility and their right to not be challenged. When you suggest that the government should not force citizens to purchase a product provided by the government, you’re accused of wanting “millions to die.” When you point out that you simply want the mandate removed, not the products, you’re told you’re lying, that you want death and you will never change their mind. This is a large issue for sure, but this attitude goes much farther than just Health Care or other government programs. Stories have been told many times of a woman ranting at a man for holding the door as she “doesn’t need a man” to do that for her. Some have the man saying fine, then entering and not holding the door, only to then be berated for being rude. That event, ranting about holding the door and not holding the door, shows the attitude of “I’m always right, do as I say!” the clearest. How is anyone to know if someone wants a door held for them or not? A video online some ago shows a woman ranting at a couple as they simply share a chaste kiss for “having sex” in a restaurant. When the business refuses to kick them out, the woman then throws her food on the ground and demands a refund, after which it gets worse when she’s told no.

Opponents of unfettered immigration and open borders are accused of racism for wanting all immigration laws already on the books enforced. When those people ask what race an “illegal immigrant” is, they’re screamed at for “clouding the issue” and being racist. When illegal immigrants rape or kill an American, and are given little more than a slap on the wrist by a “sanctuary city” (5) opponents of illegal immigration use this to show why our laws must be enforced, while supporters of open borders say it’s a “random incident” and “shouldn’t be used to tar good people” but they can’t offer any statistics to show how it’s an isolated incident.

The cries of racism or sexism aren’t restricted to illegal immigration or opinionated people who believe they have a right to be right. Very few people today will argue in favor of Jim Crowe laws as we saw in the 1950’s and 1960’s, rather the opposite, as “separate but equal” never works. But, today, we have minority students demanding segregation, companies sued for not hiring a minority over a more qualified person, and even calls to change a character’s race or gender to be “inclusive.” One company, just over 15 years ago, had a policy that all applications were online and anyone including “anything that would give away the race or sex of the applicant” was disqualified. The first and second interviews were automated via phone, the third via phone with a live person, and the fourth was all but a job offer and the first time you were seen by anyone. This company was sued (although they won each time) for “policies that harmed minorities” and the argument was that minorities wouldn’t have access to the needed technology, despite public libraries not charging for internet time to apply for jobs, and phones being widely available and inexpensive.

The popular culture arguments are even more comical, as they are almost all made by those who would never watch the program they demand conform to their point of view. Two examples show how the policy works wonderfully, or could fail dramatically. The Flash, on the CW network, has the characters of Joe, Iris, and Wally West, played by African Americans, and being a long time fan of the comic myself, I noticed the change, but never cared, as these three are amazing in the role they play. This shows that if you hire for talent, it won’t matter who is playing the role, unless there is a reason to otherwise look for talent. Doctor Who, for years, has come under fire for not having a woman play The Doctor. Initially, the role of someone who fled their planet to avoid military conscription, and being the 1960’s, meant a man, but over time, we have seen women assume roles originally played by men, from Commanders on Gallifrey, to Missy taking over from The Master, and the new Doctor coming in late 2017 is a woman, but from all reports, will do amazingly, indicating that until now, the right woman for the role just wasn’t available. In a funny twist of fate, someone was outraged that Superman on the CW show Supergirl was to only be white, despite having a white man playing the role in the credits, while another was incensed that Rami Malek, a “white man,” was playing an Egyptian Pharaoh in the Night at the Museum movies, until Malek let them know he was born in Egypt, and thus, actually an Egyptian!

This argument also comes into play in many other situations, but it always comes down to the same basic tenet, hire based on race/sex to avoid being racist/sexist, and the irony of “you must be racist/sexist to not be racist/sexist” just brings about the response of “you’re too ignorant to understand.”

Agree with me or you’re a Nazi and to be killed

The secondary tactic today is to call everyone who doesn’t agree with and follow you without question a nazi. Being a student of history, and having already said this here, those using that accusation to silence dissent are actually using the nazi tactics and logic. After World War 1, Germany was demoralized and dejected, until a charismatic man named Adolf Hitler rose to power and gave the country a scapegoat and whipped them into a frenzy. This is a typical tactic, that being to paint your opponent as so evil that all around you will rally to your defense. Charlottesville, VA saw a violent clash between “nazis” and “antifa,” although many now claim to have seen these groups come in on the same busses, suggesting they are simply one group instigating violence to get their way.

My personal stance, and arguments, against this argument is simple, my Grandfather and Great Uncles fought in World War II against the actual Nazis, with one dying on D-Day and laying in Calais to this day. My Great Uncle Coleman, a tank commander on D-Day and in North Africa, rode into Paris when it was liberated, and told me about his time in the Army fighting a brutal regime that murdered millions for the “crimes” of being Jewish, or gay, or otherwise undesirable. Just under a century before that, my ancestors fought to free slaves in the south, but because I don’t support what these “enlightened” people do, I am now painted as nazi.

The clarion call, of course, is to disarm all who are legally armed after any event involving a firearm. A “white supremacist” killed African Americans after the election of President Trump and the call was for gun control, not killer control. Those crying for “common sense gun control” ignore the tool used when it’s a pressure cooker (Boston Marathon bomber,) a truck (NYC,) or a van full of fertilizer (OKC Federal building,) and look for how to fix mental health, but when someone uses a firearm, you’re a nazi for wanting to address the actual issue, not just ban a tool.

Looking at three specific events should show how making a tool illegal is going to do nothing, as Chicago and Detroit should prove on their own. Columbine High School saw a brutal massacre of students, by other students, using weapons stolen from their parents or others they knew. These were high school students, and thus, they should not have any legal way to purchase a firearm. The only exception is if they were already 18, they can legally buy a shotgun, but they used other weapons that they could not legally purchase, so if they acquired the weapons illegally, how would yet another law stop them. Sandy Hook Elementary was virtually identical, with the killer stealing the weapons to kill with them. Again, he acquired them illegally, but the call was to pass another law, not address how to stop the person. This one also showed media ignorance, as they showed a photo of an AR-15, when that was left in his car and not used. Finally, Sutherland Springs, TX, saw a Baptist Church targeted by an avowed atheist who hated Christians. While he did purchase his weapon, he should not have been allowed to, as had his Dishonorable Discharge and Domestic Violence charges been properly reported when they happened, the state of TX would have had him on record as a prohibited possessor, meaning legally, he shouldn’t have been allowed any weapons. But, in the aftermath, former Vice President Biden is on record saying the man who had his own AR-15, and stopped this murderer, should not have been allowed to have the weapon that stopped a killer and saved lives.

The simple fact is that if you argue against removing a statue, for a speaker to come to a private event, or for law abiding citizens to be armed as the law allows, you are labeled a “nazi” and will be attacked, in some cases, physically and to the point of death.

What do we take away from this?
What we take away from this is, simply, that it is still a long and hard fight to bring common sense back to society as a whole. Those accused of being nazis, or racists, or sexists, will be among the first to tell you that someone who has a history of violence should not be allowed to own a firearm, or a man deported five times who has felonies in addition to his illegal status should not be allowed in the country before he is even able to kill someone. But they also tell you that a private business can deny service, and the free market should then decide if that was a wise choice.

These are the people who stop in a driving rainstorm to change a stranger’s tire, who hear about a family in their community suffering a loss and rally to cook meals and help, and generally do all they can to help anyone in need. Those accusing them of all manner of horrible things are those who demand that you wait for the Police when a killer is standing over you. They scream that you want children dead for suggesting women arm themselves to prevent assault, while also screaming that we need to “teach men not to rape,” as if it’s a genetic thing, although they also tell you being a man isn’t genetic.

The arguments don’t make sense, as they tell you that rape culture is only fixable by “teaching men not to rape,” then tell you that you can’t assume someone’s gender. They ignore the actual culture of rape in Hollywood and the DNC, while harping on “locker room talk” from over a decade ago from a man who, until he ran for President, was never accused of racism or sexism. All of this, to me, proves that we don’t have a racism, sexism, or homophobia issue, we have an willful ignorance issue.

If someone broke into your home five times, each time doing damage to your property and family, would you welcome them back again, and then say they didn’t do anything wrong by their actions leading to the death of one of your family? No, you wouldn’t, although I also wouldn’t argue that a pistol round can ricochet and kill as was argued in this case, having read about it, but that is just what the jury in San Fransisco has said. If you were beaten to a pulp would you blame the bat, or the person swinging it? If you were fired for calling in sick when found to later be at a baseball game, would you blame racism for your being found out to be lying? This is the crux of the matter and what must change, as we have almost half of all Americans today blaming everyone but the person responsible. Zarate, after killing Kate Steinle, is acquitted despite multiple felony convictions and deportations, companies are accused of racism when a minority who is less qualified than a non-minority, doesn’t get the job they want, and men are accused of all manner of crimes for merely living their lives. The question here then becomes simple, when, if ever, will society finally stop this madness? If we don’t, we are headed for the end of the grand experiment that is the Shining City on the Hill that is the United States.

The Rules
Now, I’m sorry I have to put this here, but as I’m going to encourage my followers on Gab and Twitter to share this, so as to have as many as possible in the conversation, there are some rules I do not budge on when it comes to comments.

Remain civil and respectful of everyone’s right to their own opinion. You do have a right to think and believe as you do, but so do those you disagree with.

This is, by my design, an family friendly blog. Yes, I know that the topics I write about are not those children, or even teenagers, normally read about and discuss, but part of rule one, being civil, is not resorting to profanity.

If you resort to a base insult, you will immediately be ignored by me and all others who understand the rules of a debate. If I challenge your point and you call me racist, you are proven to be someone unworthy of my time and respect, and I will ignore you after that.

CITE! YOUR! SOURCES! I have cited my sources for the examples above, and if you have an example used where the source isn’t cited, you can assume it’s my own personal experience, but feel free to ask. If you are asked for source material, either admit you’re using something you can’t prove, or provide the source material.

Finally, and most importantly, I am never, by disagreeing with you, denying any right or insulting you, rather, I am embracing my own right to free speech, and questioning what I do not believe. If you are unable to convince me, that is not my “denying your right” to anything, it’s my refusal to embrace your point of view simply because you demand I do.

 

 

Addendum – I’ve fought the HTML and revised over ten times now and I cannot get a constant result of a SIMPLE CARRIAGE RETURN after the centered section headers.  I know it looks bad, but sadly WordPress is apparently in a mood to undo all changes when I save a draft.

An open letter to Congress and the Supreme Court

I will be mailing this letter, with only the salutation changed to personalize it, to all Reps and Senators from TX, on any relevant committee, and to all SCOTUS Justices.

Dear Sir/Ma’am,

We have seen tragedy in this country for decades, from Waco and Ruby Ridge, to Oklahoma City, to most recently, Las Vegas, and all of these tragedies share a few common threads. First, and almost instantly, there is a clarion call to “enact common sense gun control,” regardless of the fact that Waco with the Branch Davidians was the Government storming their compound, or OKC was a van filled with fertilizer, or the Boston Marathon bomb was a pressure cooker, it’s always “we need gun control.” What is ignored in all of these events, is that the weapons used were either perverted from their intended use (the van, fertilizer, pressure cooker) or illegally obtained, as those bent on committing murder will not let something like a law stop them.
Looking as the Sutherland Springs, TX shooting, the assailant was dishonorably discharged from the U.S. Air Force and had a domestic violence charge in his past that was not expunged or otherwise done away with, so he was a prohibited possessor in the State of Texas. The reason he was able to purchase his weapon was not due to the law being inadequate, but rather, the U.S. Air Force not filing the records properly and/or in good time. Had any background check in the State of Texas been run on his and shown his dishonorable discharge, the sale of any firearm would have been denied instantly, and this would not have stopped him finding a way to murder those he hated. Had it not been for a man with an AR style rifle and another with a weapon of his own, the TX shooter may not have stopped until all in that church were dead, yet we have a former Vice President, on record about that very shooting and the man’s actions to stop a murderer, saying the man should not have had that weapon that day, indicating he would prefer more people die waiting on police than a law abiding citizen step in to protect people.

Looking to Maryland now, however, we see far more than negligence in the mindset that banning weapons will keep them away from criminals, we see poorly thought out and poorly worded legislation, just as we saw in the wake of Las Vegas with attempts to regulate or ban bump stocks, using the verbiage “any device capable of increasing the standard rate of fire” of a semi-automatic weapon. The current rush to ban “military style” weapons, or “weapons of war” is as ill-advised and ill thought out as the rush to ban “devices that increase the standard rate of fire” of a semi-automatic weapon.

When looking at the first example, you need only speak to anyone who has used semi-automatic firearms for any significant length of time, and they will tell you that all humans are born with 10 such devices, they’re called fingers. For any weapon that does not automatically cycle and fire the next round (which are currently not available to civilians without extensive licensing and fees) there is no “standard rate of fire.” That term in and of itself refers only to automatic weapons, the term semi-automatic means that one round is fired every time the trigger is pulled, no more. The move after Las Vegas was to ban Bump Stocks, which rock the weapon and have a bit of plastic that prevents you from fully depressing the trigger, so the trigger is “pulled” very rapidly. This, however, is not the only way to do this, and two require nothing more than clothing and your body. You see, if the shooter does not properly seat the rifle against his or her shoulder, the weapon could rock in their arm, causing a bump fire situation until they react to remove their finger. Likewise, you can fire from the hip, with a finger or thumb through a belt loop and the trigger guard, also allowing the recoil to rock the weapon, firing very rapidly, so the above legislation would, in effect, ban fingers and belt loops in addition to bump stocks. Not to mention, it bans inexperienced shooters from ever learning lesson one on the range. Again, I am not averse to regulating bump stocks, and in fact fully support such regulations, but as a college educated American, who studied History and Political Science specifically, I see warnings of government overreach, due to poorly worded legislation, and I don’t like it.

Moving to the new situation in Maryland, where “military style” weapons are being banned, or others are saying the Second Amendment does not include “weapons of war,” I could not disagree more on both parts. First, if you visit any Military installation, the hip of every Military Police Officer will have something I own on it, a semi-automatic pistol, either in 9MM or .45ACP caliber. Simply by those men and women using them in their day to day duties, that is now a “military style” weapon, and a “weapon of war” as it’s also carried overseas by infantry, special forces, MP and other Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen both in and out of theaters of war. Aside from the make and barrel type, my 12GA shotgun is the same, as it’s the most common gauge shotgun on the planet, it’s just that the Military and Law Enforcement use Bull Barrels and I have a Bird Barrel currently. In point of fact, the only weapon I own that is not a “military style” weapon is my AR-15, it simply mimics the look of a Military weapon, that being the M-16, but that’s where it ends. Other than a few specific jobs in the military, the vast majority of rifles used as Select Fire, meaning you have 3 or 4 options, those being Safe (firing disabled,) single shot, 3 shot burst, full automatic. I know very few positions in the Military today where I would want a rifle that cannot fire at least a 3 shot burst, and every rifle I’ve owned does only that.

Moving on with respect to my AR-15, the only thing that is actually the same with regards to weapon function (this ignores the look or the rail system allowing additions to the weapon) is the caliber of ammunition, that being 223 Remington or 556, oddly enough, many widely available rifles today, which are not banned, are more powerful than either of those calibers. With no more than gravity and resistance by air, a 223 or 556 round will travel roughly 1650 feet, just about a third of a mile, before it hits the ground. Other rifles, such as the 308, 7 Mag, or 300 Winchester will travel further, and do more damage at further distances, as they were designed for hunting larger game, yet these are not banned as they aren’t “military style” or “weapons of war,” although again, as with my pistol and shotgun, many weapons designed for hunters are used by the Military today, as they are trained to find and use the best tool for their job.

Now, why have I chosen to reach out only now? I was only four when John Hinckley Jr attempted to assassinate President Reagan, but I have studied that event as it began the snowball of “common sense gun control” almost 40 years ago. From the Brady Bill and other waiting period laws, to the background checks of today, nothing has worked to curtail the violence in the hearts of evil men and women. One need only look to Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore, or any other major city to find gang violence, and no weapon used by the thugs who seek to intimidate and control others is legally owned. Yet, in some of these places, citizens who just want to live their lives are disarmed, and even later told that unless the criminal is in the building with them, police will not respond until at the earliest, the next day. Worse still, some who defend themselves and either harm or kill their assailant are later charged with a crime, or the family of said attempted murderer are allowed to sue the person attacked for monetary damages.

As recently as 2012, George Zimmerman was attacked by a young man who may have been under the influence of narcotics, and defended himself, ultimately taking the life of his attacker, and was then charged with murder and civilly sued for defending his life. While yes, there are particulars of the case where I disagree with choices made, or need more information, the simple fact that Martin was attacking Zimmerman, and inaction would lead to Zimmerman’s death, have not changed.

Only two years later, Officer Wilson was forced to choose to shoot Michael Brown in Ferguson Missouri, or he would have died. The mantra was quickly taken up by the media that Brown was running away, or had his hands up, or was kneeling, and all three have him shot in the back, while forensics show the rounds that struck him entered from the front, corroborating Wilson’s story that Brown was attacking him, yet a Police Officer who had responded to the scene of a crime, who was being either aggressively approached or attacked, lost his livelihood and had to move his family, because of a societal attitude that all boils down to “blame the tool, not the criminal.”

Sadly, this attitude is now so prevalent, that we see situations like Maryland, where legislation passes that is so poorly worded, anyone could point out what I have, and ban semi-automatic pistols, or shotguns, as if the Military uses them, they are now “weapons of war.” These same people often point out that “you don’t need an AR 15 to defend your home” or “the second amendment was about the military” and they are wrong on both counts. If someone enters my home illegally, and is carrying a weapon, seeing my pistol is likely to get me shot, while seeing me holding my AR 15 causes instant pause and often flight rather than fight. Were I restricted to my sidearm, I would most often be forced to use it to defend myself, but the mere sight of a rifle in my hands, the mere threat of force, often causes attackers to flee, allowing me to report the crime to the proper authorities and no one is harmed unless the criminals resist their later arrest.

The second argument, that the Second Amendment either only allows the use of weapons available at the time it was written, or that it applies only the Military, are both just as wrong as the assertion that “you don’t need (whatever weapon they hate at the time) to defend yourself” in that it seeks to impose rules where those rules have been specifically forbidden. The wording and timing of the Second Amendment are concrete facts, we know it was written just after a bloody war of independence from a government which sought to subjugate the colonies, and use them to make money, with no respect for the people who would be actually producing what the British would use or sell. That scenario showed our Founding Fathers that, if the government chooses tyranny over respect for the governed, the only viable option is for the people, the citizens and civilians, to stand up and say no more. Yes, our Military swear to uphold and defend the Constitution, but that does not prevent a tyrannical government from locking up all Military installations and only allowing those who will swear fealty and loyalty to the government out, thus ensuring they are well armed and the rest of us are left with what we personally own, the exact situation the colonists found themselves in just over 200 years ago. While this argument can be used to say that tanks, RPG’s, planes, and so on are legal for civilians to buy, there is valid reason to prevent a civilian from purchasing those as they have use only in a theater of war, and we all hope that the streets of small-town America never become such a theater. Saying, however, that a weapon that merely resembles another, and is the same caliber, but is actually less powerful and useful in battle, is a “weapon of war” or “military style” while other more useful and powerful weapons are allowed, shows an arrogance and ignorance that, in the halls of State of Federal government is very dangerous.

To show, using another Amendment, where this can go, we need only look at the potential ramifications of Net Neutrality being repealed. There are already allegations of Twitter and Facebook censoring certain viewpoints and not others, which from what I’ve seen amounts to stopping speech some find offensive and allowing calls for actual violence, based solely on political affiliation. Without Net Neutrality, all that needs be done is for Twitter, Facebook, or another to report to the ISP being used that someone is “engaging in hate speech or violent online behavior” and that person now either loses their internet connection, or must pay astronomical rates to keep it, all based only one a simple report. This, oddly enough, does exactly what I use as an example of how the Founding Fathers knew about and included advances in technology. The argument is often made that the Second Amendment only covers weapons that were available in the late 18th Century, but what is ignored is that the Puckle Gun was already available, was a rapid fire weapon, and was just too expensive for the Colonial Government to purchase. But, if your weapons can be taken because they aren’t covered by the Bill of Rights because they didn’t exist in the late 18th Century, so can your methods of speaking. Looking to the time of the Bill Of Rights, only the early printing press, quill and ink, and your voice were available. So, by the logic of “only the weapons available in colonial times” are covered, so too are methods of speech.

To close, and I do thank you for taking the time to read this letter, I will quote the Tenth Amendment.

“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved for the States respectively, or to the people.”

In short, anything the Constitution does not specifically mention as a power of the Federal Government, or specifically prohibit the Federal Government from doing, is something only The People, or the individual States can do. We all know that the Bill of Rights does not grant us the right to free speech, peaceable assembly, petition, to bear arms, or any other right. Rather, the Constitution and Bill Of Rights simply enumerate the rights all of us have, and state that the Federal or State government must protect them. As the Third Amendment prevents quartering of Soldiers in citizens’ homes, the Federal Government cannot do that, and also must prevent States from doing so either. As there is no mention in the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, or Bill of Rights of the word Marriage, let alone what that is, that is not a power delegated to the Federal Government or prohibited to the States, so it is up to each state to decide for themselves.

We must reclaim common sense in all aspects of governance, as we are moving toward a time when the Federal Government may say that as someone is unpopular, they may be jailed so others are not forced to hear them, or as a certain religion is unpopular, you may not hold public office if you don’t renounce your faith. Oddly enough we have sitting Representatives and Senators already disparaging those nominated for federal office due to their faith, while private citizens scream that a teacher joining a student led prayer is a violation of the First Amendment. For too long we have allowed the perversion of our way of life, the perversion of our founding principles, and if we don’t act soon to reclaim what those actually are, and protect them for all Americans, we will lose our country as we did in 1861, and I fear not even a four year war could repair it this time.