Guns Are Not Sexy! Guns Are Sexy!

Woman with GunDoublethink again. As Frank pointed out in his post Police Oversight and Dead Children, “Our society is all about guns; men are supposed to like them; boys are supposed to play with fake ones. I wish it weren’t so. But it is wrong for a society to tell a boy in a million ways that guns are cool and then blame him for getting killed.”

I was looking for an incendiary image that I could use for my last post. I wanted a picture of a woman looking afraid while holding a gun, so I typed “woman holding a gun” into Google search. The images that popped up were disturbing, but not in the way I was expecting.

I understand the phallic nature of guns, the sense of control and power that holding one apparently exudes, but I still think it’s a stupid and dangerous fetish. I presume that’s the reasoning behind making paintball and other types of “toy” guns look so realistic, so boys can play men (and by “boys” I mean grown men who don’t want their toys to look like toys). Actually, I understand that too.

Unfortunately, there are too many real guns in the world and therein lies the real problem.

A Number of Very Bad Choices

bang gunIn yet another accidental shooting here in the U.S., a child is dead simply because someone who had no business having a gun in the first place, left it lying within easy reach of a child. So today, a 5-year-old boy is dead in a tragedy that was, as a chief deputy astutely observed, “avoidable.” Of course it was.

Leaving a child and a 6-month-old infant unattended is a negligent thing to do. Leaving those same children alone with a loaded gun is reprehensible. People make stupid choices every day, but stupid choices involving guns are pretty much guaranteed to go badly.

“[Babysitter, April] Ringhardt stated to investigators that she was carrying a handgun on her person in the home that day because she was scared being at home alone,” the statement said. “The handgun was a semi-automatic .40 caliber pistol. Ringhardt left the handgun on a coffee table in the living room and went to the bedroom to take a nap. When she was awakened from her nap, she noticed she didn’t see John around the house. She began looking until she found him deceased in the living room with the fatal gunshot wound.”

Even if she weren’t armed and afraid of being alone, children should never be left in the hands of someone who won’t actually be looking after them. What sensible person would leave a loaded weapon on a coffee table and then take a nap? If you’re afraid of being alone and the gun makes you feel better, nap with it! Better you should accidentally shoot yourself than lose a child left in your care.

Redneck Patriotism

Gun-toterThis image and accompanying text are from a multi-forwarded email that I received this morning.

This Guy Had The Guts To Put This On The Internet

There are people in my life whom I love in spite of our vast political and religious differences. (I feel a little like Diana Nyad dealing with Oprah — Oprah only sees what she wants to see.) So rather than respond to this rhetorical bile and risk offending someone whom I would rather leave in blissful ignorance, I’ll vent here.

[Editor’s note: I have not altered the unique grammatical structure or punctuation of this proud American’s defiant, unapologetic and God-fearing expression of patriotism, however I have omitted the variety of typefaces, American flags, eagles, photos of kittens appearing to pray, and so on.]

I Am the Liberal­ Progressives Worst Nightmare.
I am an American.
I am a Master Mason and believe in God.
I ride Harley Davidson Motorcycles and believe in American products.
I believe the money I make belongs to me and my family, not some Liberal governmental functionary be it Democratic or Republican!
I’m in touch with my feelings and I like it that way! I like it that way!
I think owning a gun doesn’t make you a killer, it makes you a smart American.
I think being a minority does not make you noble or victimized, and does not entitle you to anything. Get over it!
I believe that if you are selling me a Big Mac, do it in English.[1]
I believe everyone has a right to pray to his or her God when and where they want to.
My heroes are John Wayne, Babe Ruth, Roy Rogers, and Willie G. Davidson that makes the awesome Harley Davidson Motorcycles.
I don’t hate the rich. I don’t pity the poor. 
I know wrestling is fake and I don’t waste my time watching or arguing about it.
I’ve never owned a slave, or was a slave, I haven’t burned any witches or been persecuted by the Turks and neither have you!
I want to know exactly where the churches are that Reverend Jesse Jackson and Reverend Al Sharpton preach, where they get
their money, and why they are always part of the problem and never the solution. Can I get an AMEN on that one?
I also think the cops have the right to pull you over if you’re breaking the law, regardless of what color you are.
And, no, I don’t mind having my face shown on my drivers license.
I think it’s good…. And I’m proud that ‘God’ is written on my money.
I believe that it doesn’t take a village to raise a child, it takes two parents.
I believe ‘illegal’ is illegal no matter what the lawyers think.
I believe the American flag should be the only one allowed in AMERICA !
If this makes me a BAD American, then yes, I’m a BAD American.

If you are a BAD American too, please forward this to everyone you know.
We want our country back!We NEED GOD BACK IN OUR COUNTRY!
And if I send you a lot of political stuff it is because I love this Country and the Constitution and you. I don’t like the way my
Country is being run and neither should you. So I send it to give you the truth. If you don’t like it … sorry I’m sending it anyway.


Art Mason
MSgt Arthur R. Mason USAF (Ret.)
Deo adjuvante non timendum [2]

Is this apoplectic outpouring of patriotism from a real person or is it just a Conservative variation of the ancient Chain Letter? Is MSgt Arthur R Mason USAF a real person? The only indication that he might be a walking, breathing (if not thinking) human being is on a restricted (and I’m pretty sure I know why) Yahoo! Group: “Army Security Agency Vets – A club for the top ten percent.” Verifying his existence isn’t really important. What’s important is that MSgt Arthur R. Mason USAF (Ret.) had THE GUTS to maybe have posted this rant on the internet himself!

Regardless of the original writer of this offensive, ignorant tirade, it is being passed around like a note in a 7th grade classroom. There is much to correct, mock or easily disprove, but what’s the point? People either agree with it or they don’t. I don’t, but obviously there are many people like MSgt Arthur R. Mason USAF (Ret.) who are filled with rage at imaginary wrongs and feel compelled to spew their impotent and misguided opinions at anyone with an email address.


This is a screenshot of page that I can’t get to now without joining the group.

Old Woman

[1] Unless you’re in another country, you will be sold a Big Mac in English.

[2] God helping me not to fear


OMG! Create Your Own God

Your Own Deity
Finally, intelligent design! Mix and match your own gods with our OMG magnetic dress up set and turn your refrigerator into a shrine.

Includes the following mix-and-match gods:
God (Judeo-Christian-Islamic)
Neolithic Goddess
Tlinglit Eagle
Flying Spaghetti Monster
Burning Bush

I know when the house is a mocking, don’t come a mocking, but I don’t think any religion considers “Burning Bush” as a god. Only the very silly Knights Who Say Ni! worship shrubbery.

Pay Attention to Me!


What’s the point of dumping my random thoughts into the abyss of cyberspace if no one is going to acknowledge me? I mean, can I get a little validation up in this bitch?[1]

[1] I hope I’ve used that expression correctly, otherwise it might draw attention to my overall distance from popular culture and that would be awkward. Not that anyone would notice because no one ever does. I mean, come on!

Oh Really O’Reilly?

O'ReillyBill O’Reilly, mouthpiece of the Great White Male, recently came out, not from the closet silly, but almost pretty much in favor of gay marriage. Apparently he’s okay with civil unions and really doesn’t care either way. I don’t know how old his kids are, so he might end up pulling a Portman someday. According to Politco, O’Reilly said the following:

The compelling argument is on the side of homosexuals. That’s where the compelling argument is. “We’re Americans. We just want to be treated like everybody else.” That’s a compelling argument, and to deny that, you have got to have a very strong argument on the other side. The argument on the other side hasn’t been able to do anything but thump the Bible.

What’s next, Rush Limbaugh saying he supports women’s rights? I know that’s a pipe dream. He’s more likely to suffer an on-air aneurism (which could happen and would be truly inspirational).


Martin Luther King, Jr.

M.L.K.I am not a great follower of history, but Martin Luther King, Jr. is one of the few names that comes to mind when I think of people who gave of themselves to make this a better society.

Being white, I am naturally ignorant of the true struggles of any other race. I know my world; I hear rumors of others. And yet, here I am, at the request of a friend, blogging about a man, an historical figure, about whom I actually know very little. What I do know is that, because of men like Martin Luther King, Jr., our world ― as far from ideal as it is ― is better and more unified. His strength and bravery, his choice to become a voice for his people, cleared a path toward self-respect and hope. His people being anyone oppressed, abused, tortured, or murdered because of the ignorance, greed, and brutality of other human beings.

As my sufferings mounted I soon realized that there were two ways in which I could respond to my situation ― either to react with bitterness or seek to transform the suffering into a creative force. I decided to follow the latter course. ― Martin Luther King Jr.

See also King on Poverty.

The Letter G

Gis for God.

G is also for other fictional characters like Goldilocks, Godzirra!, and Gollum.

God. Say it backwards, and unlike Zed Zeppelin’s hidden Satanic agenda, it says dog. I like dogs. Dogs have done more good for people than everyone’s gods and goddesses put together. A dog has never killed another on behalf of a doggy deity. It is a fact that dogs and a proper diet have saved more lives than God. Whatever malignant or benign impact believers have had on the world is their own doing — not the actions of god working through them. Maybe they have themselves confused with marionettes.

“Do I look stupid? God damned right I’m an atheist!”

The Cult of Personality

FMy mother-in-law despised Martha Stewart, although I never really knew why. Probably something to do with a disagreement over the proper use of little forks. I, on the other hand, don’t care for Oprah Winfrey. I can get past the creative collective that is the Martha Stewart brand, because I can always use clever hints to help me stay at the top of my womanly game. Housekeeping, gardening, home decorating, entertaining, pet care, arts and crafts with found objects, and recipes for foods I can explain to guests; she tells us how to do it all. If I were insecure her spectacular array of skills might make me feel like a failure as a keeper of home and hearth. Instead, I look to Martha for the inspirational guidance that is preparing me for the day I too have servants.

Americans are fascinated by narcissists. We either hate them, mock them, or emulate them. Stephen Colbert is a narcisstic caricature, an egomaniac with titanium balls, who entertains. Bill O’Reilly’s inflated self-worth has made him an arrogant bully. Martha Stewart is a confident and apparently savvy entrepreneur with a fairly benign influence.

Then there’s Oprah. Her ego is as alarming in its breadth as in its effect on others. I think its very mass may even pose a threat to our tidal system. Oprah has taken self-promotion to an outrageous level. Where Martha sells the promise of perfection (and the products to get you there), Oprah sells her thoughts and opinions. Those are the products she hawks to the public. Where people of influence like Martha Stewart and Stephen Colbert have fans, Oprah has followers. If she tells her adoring minions to read this, hate that, eat something else, they’ll hop to as if God had spoken to them. And pity the unfortunate being who pisses her off. She can destroy you.

Rather than being repulsive, Oprah’s confidence seems as infectious as the common cold. How else to explain that she has become the Queen Confessor? Celebrities are granted televised sessions with her and pray they are found worthy. (I’m actually a bit disappointed with Colbert for accepting her permission for an interview).

Take Lance Armstrong. (He now comes in pill form!) His unflagging and very public denial of doping wasn’t worth the attention given it. His final admission of doping was as immaterial as Elton John telling the world he’s gay. Why the need to be interviewed by Oprah? Was finally manning up (or giving up) to announce, through the Oracle of Oprah, that he had lied (something everyone already knew), the act of penance that would absolve him of past deception?

There was a time when celebrities and politicians with Announcements, would only talk to Barbara Walters or another respected journalist. When a talk show host can become the Great and Powerful O, it’s time to tune out.

The Letter F

Fis for Future.

The future is any time that hasn’t happened yet. Unless time is some weird Möbius band, then maybe the future may be time that has already happened but that we, at this point in time, are unaware of. Sounds nuts to me, but then I’m no economist.

Basically the future is a big blank screen onto which we can project all of our hopes, dreams, and debilitating fears. It’s something we try to effectively affect, but mostly just brutally affects us.

“The future looks bleak, but I can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings!”