Sunday, October 28, 2007

First let's talk about...

Guns: Richard M. Roberts, Sr of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho writing to the Readers Writer letters columns of the Coeur d'Alene Press. The fellow starts off informing us that he is a proud member of the NRA. Then he goes to work and discusses how criminal gangs should not get guns. Goes on to describe how gun laws will unfairly burden law abiding and peaceful people. And then argues how, if we continue to support gun laws then eventually we'll have a totalitarian dictatorship.

Question: Can the average person tell the difference between a hunting rifle and an "assault" rifle if even the NRA membership have trouble making that distinction? According to Mr. Roberts, "any rifle can be used in an 'assault'." What is an assault? It is where you inflict bodily injury. And yes, any gun can inflict bodily injury as well as any other device inclusive of knives and golf clubs. So, according the the liberalism of the NRA, anything that can be used to "assault" your neighbor can now be described as an assault weapon.

Now, what is an assault rifle? It is a high-powered semi-automatic weapon that is commonly used for military purposes. Whereby, its effective range can be 400 meters or better. Meaning that you don't have to be within feet of your target to effectively kill him, her, or an animal. It is also a weapon [semi] fires single rounds [auto] loads each round automatically as the previous round is fired, that can be rejiggered so as to fire multiple rounds similar to a machine gun. Civilian types of semi-automatics might indeed have a place in society, if they are geared for hunting and target practice. However, because the NRA wants such weapons to be easily available for "law abiding owners," does mean that guys like the D.C. snipers can also get a hold of them.

Mr. Roberts has a better point on the banning of gangs. Okay. Of preventing them from obtaining guns is a bit harder. That's thanks to the NRA.

Now what is a "liberal court?" A court that sides with the restriction of gun use by individuals isn't "liberal." No more than a court that begins whittling away, on a religious basis, the rights of women to engage in family planning is liberal. Liberalism is all about reducing restrictions not creating them. And yes, liberalism is the bulwark against totalitarian states. The second amendment then, where the use of guns to defend a free state and therefore individual gun ownership as necessary to that defense of a free state should not be banned. But in most of Mr. Roberts letter, it isn't about defending a free state, it is his right to own any number of toys as he desires and load it with any type of ammunition that can be considered available. If he loses his toys, we are next door to a dictatorship. News for the fellow, we already are.

Trudy Rubin's column in the 28 October 2007 edition of the Spokesman-Review: Where, even though we have two wars going strong in the middle east, Afghanistan and Iraq, GW and Cheney act as though we need a new one in Iran. A few points to be made that wasn't covered in Ms. Rubin's editorial:

  • At the time Bill Clinton was facing impeachment proceedings by Congress; he was also taking an interest in the obstructionism of Saddam Hussein over the fellow's stashes of banned weapons. Clinton sent in the bombing runs. At the time, the GOP controlled Congress was all about impeaching Clinton, never mind what ever threat Hussein might continue to pose to his neighbors. Is GW wanting a new war to stave off threats to his remaining in the oval office?
  • Victory was in sight in Afghanistan, about that time, GW and the rest of his administration decided to take their focus off of that country and put it in Iraq. Effectively cutting and running from post invasion obligations. Consequences, victory is no longer in sight in Afghanistan.
  • According to Petraeus and Crocker (by way of Michael Barone's prior commentary) victory is in sight in Iraq. Okay. Now is it time to take the focus off of the troubles post invasion of that country and proceed to--just because Ahmedinejad (sic) is mouthy--invade Iran?
  • Or is it just because GW is bored?
Because we didn't do what was necessary in Afghanistan to be sure of bin Laden, the Taliban and Al Qaeda, Pakistan is now a mess and we are fighting to re-win ground in Afghanistan from the Taliban, Al Qaeda, Afghanistan's warlords, etc. Victory was never in sight in Afghanistan if we didn't work hard at creating a stable Afghan society. Well, as long as GW wants to keep inventing reasons for wars, we'll sooner or later have what he says he's opposed to: World War 3.

Finally, Kathleen Parker went with Laura Bush to the middle east: And literally gushed over shrouded women gaining the right to vote and even running for office. Okay, even speaking out for the first time when suffering from cancer and because of that illness, founding support groups.

But here in this country, Ms. Parker does nothing but snarl about women actually using the rights she admits "we take for granted." And snarls in particular at one woman, Hilary Clinton, running for highest office. Well now, why do we want the middle east to have the sort of democratic flavors that people like GW and Ms. Parker oppose on the home front?

Seems kind of strange, doesn't it.

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