23 December 2009

It's The Military, Stupid!

You know, I really loved my time in the Navy. I mean, I absolutely cherish the memories made over 20 years. That may not be a big surprise to many of you out there that know me. As much as I loved being in the Navy, I am glad I am retired from active duty. Sure, I'm happy with the fact there are no more duty days, deployments, inspections, GMT (General Military Training) and the myriad of other annoyances for me. Overall, though, I had a great time.

There is one thing that makes me especially happy to be out now. I hated being short-handed for a deployment because some stupid sailor did something to make him or her ineligible to deploy. I remember the extra hours worked and increased stress resulting from the loss of a sailor by way of a completely preventable condition. When I first joined the Navy, it wasn't a big deal, really. All the warships were male only and the only coed ships were the tenders, which basically were floating shipyards. Even back then, though, it was possible for a male sailor to be denied shore duty and sent to a tender because some female got pregnant...just before deployment...gee, I wonder why that happened?

Which is why I agree with and applaud Major General Tony Cucolo. I like the policy concerning females getting pregnant in a war zone. Being in the military is hard work, folks, and I would be lying if I said I enjoyed leaving my family to deploy for six to nine months. No, leaving your wife and/or kids is agonizing but you sailor up and do it because that's what you get paid to do.

Too many times I have witnessed women who get pregnant two months before deployment and become ineligible to deploy. I remember back in 1992; I was on shore duty, stationed at a SIMA (Shore Intermediate Maintenance Facility). My command was dubbed the Little Creek Maternity Ward because of the fact we had over 20 pregnant female sailors. Not every one of them was previously stationed on a ship; no, there were some who timed their pregnancies so they could go back to sea when their shore tour was up. Those women I have no problem with; they were true comrades-in-arms because they took the time to make sure they didn't negatively affect any other sailor.

In fact, ever since General Cucolo announced this policy, he has been vilified in the press and by women's rights advocates like the ever worthless Senator Barbara Boxer. Senator Boxer has never served in the military and has held the military in contempt for as long as I can remember. I vividly recall the time when she ordered Army Corps of Engineers Brigadier General Michael Walsh to call her Senator rather than Ma'am because she worked so hard to achieve that status. Maybe he SHOULD have called her Senator because she sure ain't a lady who deserves to be called Ma'am. Senator Boxer, you are a complete idiot who has absolutely no idea what impact a missing Sailor, Soldier, Marine or Airman has on their unit when it deploys without them.

Since you have no idea of that impact, I suggest you SHUT UP. This Iraq pregnancy policy is nothing more than an amplification of existing regulations. All service members are made aware of this policy when they sign their enlistment contract and raise their right hand for the oath. Males who "shoot themselves in the foot" just before a deployment are punished for their dereliction of duty; it is HIGH TIME we held female service members to the same standard. The General did not single out women, he is holding BOTH males and females responsible for their actions when it results in pregnancy and a ticket home for the female. This is NOT about infringing on "women's rights"; it is about ensuring EVERY member of that command, unit, squadron, platoon, etc. is ready and able to answer the call. In the military, the "rights" of the individual are trumped by the needs of the unit in this scenario. It is selfish and reprehensible for one to deliberately make one's self unable to deploy or remain deployed.

This is much like the idiots who tried to get out of deploying for the war by claiming "conscientious objector" status. WRONG AGAIN. Again, I will say this; WHEN one raises one's right hand and swears to defend this nation from all enemies foreign and domestic and obey the orders from the people over them, one is BOUND to obey orders and deploy. There is NO EXCUSE for any of these attempts to get out of doing one's job. If one has an active duty military ID card and is being paid for serving in the military on active duty one MUST perform their duties to the best of one's ability! Kowtowing to "women's rights" to excuse dereliction of duty, yet punishing males for dereliction of duty is discriminatory at best and criminal at worst. There should be no distinction between the two.

In short; YOU raised YOUR hand, YOU signed YOUR contract and YOU are collecting YOUR pay. Therefore YOU will deploy and perform YOUR duties. If YOU do not deploy or get YOUR tour abbreviated by YOUR actions YOU will be held responsible. Simple, ethical, legal. So, Senator and women's rights activists, I say this; if you have never served in the military, you have no idea what you are talking about and, therefore, should mind your own damned business and let the military do its job.

07 December 2009

You Are SO Annoying!!

I have been irritated lately; I don’t know about you but it sure seems like people are getting more and more irritating with each passing year. It never ceases to amaze me how oblivious some people are to those around them. Maybe I am too cynical, I don’t know; tell me if you agree with me on these irritating events.

Take today; it’s Monday and, true to form, it’s raining. It boggles the mind how some drivers react to rain. It’s bad enough the bumpkins around here normally drive about 10 miles under the speed limit but, if it starts to rain…oh my, the already slow idiots slow even more! It’s already bad coming out of subdivision in the mornings; there is only one way in or out and, if that’s not enough, when you exit the subdivision you have to get on a state highway to get anywhere. Normally at 7:35 am, there is a decent line of cars waiting to get on the highway (there is always heavy traffic at this spot in the mornings); it seems as if some of these people have to have an engraved invitation before they will turn on the highway. Today it was the worst I’ve seen; it’s raining so, naturally, one of the aforementioned bumpkins refuses to turn out onto the highway. I counted the seconds between cars while numnuts was waiting; 45 seconds was the least amount of time I counted…and he STILL wouldn’t turn out! Finally, idiot boy turns out on the highway. I am running late for work, having waited close to 10 minutes for this truck to turn out. I start driving a little bit faster than normal to compensate for the time lost but there is no way I am going so fast as to lose control of my vehicle on a wet road; then I come up on a car that is going a whopping 25 mph…in a 40 mph zone…and in a “No Passing” zone to boot!

Annoying drivers aside, here is another tale for you. My wife and I have a Friday routine down here in this metropolis. Every Friday evening we go out to a restaurant and, sometimes, we do a little necessary shopping after dinner (Woo-Hoo, just another exciting Friday night in Mudville!!!). It was at the restaurant where we encountered another annoying idiot. This time it was “Ignoramus Parentus Publicita”, better known as ignorant idiot parent with small children. They are eating dinner while their toddler, couldn’t be more than maybe 3 ½ years old, is running around the restaurant…literally! This child is literally running around the dining room again and again…and the parents do NOTHING!! All I could think of right then was, “I hope to God this kid doesn’t fall down or have a waiter dump something hot on him.” In my mind was a vision of that very thing happening and the parents suing the restaurant. Folks, I don’t go to places like Chuck E Cheese, Shoney’s, or any other “family-friendly” restaurants and expect no kids to be there. I know kids are going to be at those type places, so when we do go to those type restaurants, I don’t bitch about kids. So, why is it that, whenever we are in a place that is a little more fancy we still have to put up with somebody’s whiny little heathens? As if that’s not enough, when I complain about it, I get labeled an intolerant child-hater!

So, why in the world am I griping here about these things? Well, because it’s my blog and I can write about anything I want. Seriously though, my dear readers, do these two types of people annoy you as well? What do you find irritating and annoying? What is/are your biggest pet peeve(s)? Tell me, are you too annoyed at rugrats running around public places causing mayhem? Are you too annoyed at the idiotic and negligent driver that acts as if they are the only ones on the road? Tell us all here how you feel; come on, share with us! I promise the next installment of this blog will delve a little deeper into the world of the obtuse, idiotic, rude, crude, careless morons around us.

02 December 2009

We need to get God back in America...

AM NOT ASHAMED! Let's see how many people on FB are not ashamed to show their love for God and admit that Jesus is their Savior. We need to get God back in America. If you're not ashamed, copy and paste this in your status! I am thankful for God in my life!

I have seen this statement on the status update on some of my friends’ Facebook pages and it started me to wondering something…why do we need to “…get God back in America.”? I was born and raised Catholic and throughout my lifetime it has been preached to me that God is omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent (All Knowing, All Seeing and All Powerful). Is this no longer true for America? Has God abandoned the good ole USA?

I posed that question to a friend of mine who responded to me that I was missing the point; the statement was meant to remind people to keep God in their hearts. So, I asked, if that is true then why add the statement, “We need to get God back in America.”? I never got a response from my friend.

So, I am posing this question to you, my readers; if God is truly omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent, why do we need to get Him back in America? Why would one need to “get God back in America” if one simply needs to remember to keep God in one’s heart?

America is supposed to be the land of the FREE. That means each individual can either accept or reject God. It means the Hindu in America can worship Grishnu, the Muslim in America can worship Allah, the Wiccan can worship the Goddess, the Christian can worship God, the Moron…oops, sorry, I meant Mormon, can adhere to their cult leader’s teachings…OR…an individual can just not believe in God or any other deity. Evidently that is not what the original writer of that Facebook statement meant. I think that statement means the originator wants EVERYONE in America to believe in God and only God.

After all, I am sure you’ve all heard this classic Ann Coulter quote concerning Muslim countries, “We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity.”, or this other classic quote concerning “college liberals”, “When contemplating college liberals, you really regret once again that John Walker is not getting the death penalty. We need to execute people like John Walker in order to physically intimidate liberals, by making them realize that they can be killed, too. Otherwise, they will turn out to be outright traitors.”

You want to know something, folks? There is an organization out there that wants us all to accept one God and only one God; they want us all to live under their laws or die. You know them; we’re fighting them in Afghanistan and Iraq right now as we speak. Yes people, it is true, Al Qaida (and their close ally, the Taliban) want nothing more than to impose Sharia Law on the entire world and make EVERYONE a Muslim and kill the ones who don’t convert. Wow, that sounds to me a lot like Ms. Coulter’s ranting and, not coincidentally, the original Facebook statement at the beginning of this article.

And THAT, my friends, is exactly why I don’t trust any religion and I don’t trust anyone who publicly proclaims their religion is better than anyone else’s. To me, Christians and Muslims are a lot alike; except that modern Christians won’t kill to further their agenda…unless, of course, you are Ann Coulter.

17 November 2009


You know something, the world is full of contradictions. I see them every day and lately it seems they are becoming more the rule than the exception. To make this kind of amusing, I am going to list some of the biggest contradictions I see in the same style as Jeff Foxworthy's "You Might Be A Redneck..."

You might be a religious right conservative whacko if you firmly support capital punishment but oppose abortion. This one is the biggest one I see. Opponents of abortion see this as the murder of an innocent while the death penalty is applied only to the guilty. Fair enough, except that there are more than a few prisoners on death row that really are innocent. Let me show this to you another way.

You might be a religious right conservative whacko if you oppose abortion but also oppose helping the children in this country THAT ARE ALREADY HERE to get decent food, shelter and an education. That, folks is the biggest oxymoron in this country to me. Here's a thought for all you Bible Thumping idiots out there; MAYBE if you focused your efforts on HELPING THE CHILDREN THAT ARE HERE NOW, we as a country wouldn't NEED a death penalty...WOW, what a concept!

Another good point on this topic goes straight to the heart of Catholicism; you might be a religious right conservative catholic whacko if you oppose abortion and contraception as well as comprehensive sex education but give the Catholic church a pass for the CHILD MOLESTATION committed by PRIESTS.

Which also brings a simple question to all the good bible thumping morons in this country; are you people really so STUPID as to believe that comprehensive sex education is going to encourage kids to have sex? Do you REALLY believe abstinence only education and "purity rings" is the way to go; even after that crap has been de-bunked over and over again? So, let me get this straight so I completely understand your point of view here. We can't teach our kids the facts about sex, nor can we give them the means to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancies and STDs and when they have sex and get pregnant we force them to have the baby which causes them to drop out of school and go on the welfare rolls and then we bitch about having to support all these people who keep having babies indiscriminately. That sums it up pretty well, right?

Trust me when I tell you there are a host of these contradictions on the right side of the fence; to be fair, I will limit this to one from each side because, dear readers the left is just as whacko as the right. So now, let's start on the left and see what we can see.

You might be a left wing, tree hugging, granola eating whacko if you steadfastly believe that banning guns is the only way to combat crime. Really? I find it very intriguing when I see the reactions of liberals when I pose this simple question to them; if the First Amendment's reference to "the people" means the individual has the rights to free speech, religion, and protest, then how can the Second Amendment's reference to "the people" only mean law enforcement and the military has the right to keep and bear arms? To date, not a single liberal I know has been able to come up with an acceptable answer to that question.

Seriously, folks, there is overwhelming proof that stricter gun control laws do NOTHING to prevent violent crime. I don't know why some libs can't see the fact that criminals are not phased by waiting limits, background checks, magazine restrictions, etc. They aren't bothered one bit about it; want to know why? Well that is because criminals will get their hands on guns regardless of the laws...what a shock! Joe Citizen has to wait three days and survive a background check to purchase a handgun yet it will only take a criminal seconds to break into Joe's house and steal his handgun. What a concept...criminals break the law!

I really am beginning to think the liberal left truly believes that, basically, all people want to do the right thing. Kind of Pollyannaish outlook but hey, if that's what they want to believe, so be it. It's commendable you guys want to help everybody have a better life and all but we still need law enforcement and an armed and trained citizenry if we are able to bring that better life to fruition.

The best part for me is this, if the bible thumping whackos on the right would actually do something to help the kids we have now and allow for ways to stem the tide of teenage pregnancy and "unwed mothers", maybe the need for the death penalty would fade away AND the absolute NEED for an armed citizenry would abate some. Now, before any of you out there start to attack, think of this; no matter how much we do to help raise the standard of living for everyone in this country, there will ALWAYS be a criminal element that feels they should just take what they want and THAT will ensure that we will always need to have a well-armed and trained citizenry.

All we really need is for the left and the right to work together; stop pointing fingers and placing blame and WORK TOGETHER!!!!!

Stay tuned for more on the contradictions in our society...oh the fun we are gonna have!

09 November 2009

Islam = Love NOT

You know, after the shootings at Fort Hood, I posted a fairly scathing criticism of Islam. I have had a couple of heated discussions recently concerning my views of Islam. So, I sat down and started reading (again) on the nature of Islam and its followers. So here it is, a true story about Islam.

This story involves our favorite shooter, Nidal Malik Hassan. You remember him, don't you? Recent news reports say that Major Hassan is awake and talking in the hospital. Some interesting things have surfaced about this peaceful Muslim. It seems the good and peaceful Hassan attended a mosque where one of the most radical AMERICAN imams, Anwar al Malaki, preached. Yes, you heard me right, an AMERICAN imam who preached at a mosque where THREE of the 9/11 hijackers worshipped. This imam is American born, he fled to Yemen in 2002 and is calling Hassan a HERO. Yes, a HERO. This guy is an American who is now saying that American Muslims who condemn the Fort Hood attack as hypocrites. HYPOCRITES because they DISAGREE with EXTREMISM! Not only that but now we are learning that Major Hassan has a history of hating the country that afforded him the freedom to hate it and kill its citizens. Is there ANYBODY out there that sees the irony in that last sentence? When Hassan was in college, he worried his fellow students so much, they complained about him because he was making blatantly anti-American statements and justifying suicide bombing and saying sharia law trumps the Constitution.

You'd think the Army would have gotten rid of him for that but no, they kept him and made him a Major. Want to know why they did that? This is just my opinion; I think the Army kept him because they didn't want the hassle of an "equal rights" protest from liberal ideologues or risk a public condemnation from the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) accusing the Army of "racial profiling". So, in order to be seen as Politically Correct (PC) they kept him and now we have 13 dead and 29 wounded soldiers for it. Folks, it doesn't take a genius to see here that PC bullshit doesn't work. It doesn't take a genius to see that Islam is a religion of hatred and violence. So why do we accept both? We accept both because the PC clowns have beat us over the head long enough that we are too afraid to do what is necessary to keep us safe! The BEST part of this tale is that the illustrious Army Chief of Staff, General George Casey, is more worried about "anti_Muslim" reactions to the incident. General Casey is more sympathetic to Muslims than to the families of the 13 dead and 29 wounded soldiers.

You know, normally I am an Independent with slightly liberal leanings when it comes to social issues. But THIS is ridiculous. There is no better evidence of the radical and hate-filled rhetoric of Islam than this incident at Fort Hood. It is time, America. It is time we STOPPED WORRYING about the poor Muslims and started protecting the citizens of this country! Political Correctness be damned, take a proactive stance NOW! Issue an ultimatum to every Muslim in America; either you STOP preaching against this country and PUBLICLY and LOUDLY decry and condemn the Taliban, Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Al Shabab, Hamas and every other Muslim based terrorist organization and FIGHT AGAINST THEM or you will be deported. Yes, deported.

Muslims cannot and should not be trusted, ever. It should be a court-martial offense to be in the military and be a Muslim. Yes, this is discriminatory but until I see and hear CAIR denouncing these attacks we have no choice. Islam does not tolerate anyone that believes differently, to try and smooth that fact over with PC bullshit is crazy and stupid. Islam must be run out of America...now. How many more innocent deaths are we going to tolerate until our government grows a set of balls?

05 November 2009

12 die, 31 wounded in Fort Hood shooting

Oh my Holy Lord...this breaking news is, to say the least, shocking. It's hard to believe that a soldier would open fire on his fellow soldiers and kill 12. My heart goes out to the families of the 12 dead and 31 wounded soldiers. If they had died in Iraq or Afghanistan, their deaths would, at least, make sense but HERE?!?!? At Fort Hood, Texas?!?!?!? I read the article in shock and horror, I kept asking myself WHY would this happen, HOW did this happen; the answer I was so desperately seeking was right under my nose in the article.

The shooter that was killed by security forces was an Army Major named, and get this, everybody, and think about it...his name was Malik Nadal Hasan. It gets better, folks; this guy was a MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONAL! So now we have an Army Major, who is an Army psychiatrist who either was born Malik Nadal Hasan or took the name after converting to Islam. Seriously, I do not give one whit on whether he was born into Islam or converted to Islam; for me, the writing is on the wall, clear as day.

This "person" was a MUSLIM who ATTACKED AMERICANS. Gee, what a shock...a Muslim killing Americans...wow I never thought THAT could happen. Just so you know, I am rolling my eyes to emphasize the sarcasm. The even more curious part for me is where in the hell are the MUSLIMS on the Council for American Islam Relations (CAIR)? Where are they? Why are they not condemning this act of terrorism? Do you want to know why they aren't saying anything? It's because THEY WANT AMERICANS TO DIE!!! HELLO!!!! IS ANYBODY HOME!?!?!?!?!?

CAIR sues because some clerics/imams, whatever, were arrested and taken off a flight after they made several disturbing remarks. CAIR jumps on us because we are "discriminating" against Muslims, but when a Muslim attacks for no apparent reason they don't say a word. Kinda like another situation in this country with two certain "Civil Rights" activists who pounce whenever a white officer arrests a black guy for a crime and turns out he was innocent (even though they learn it was ANOTHER black guy who committed the crime) yet NEVER say anything that may show responsibility on their part for their situation.

Yes, Virginia, racism is still alive and well in the USA...but it's against white Americans...not the other way around anymore. Call me a bigot, a racist, a bastard, whatever you want to call me, I don't care. My opinion, for what it's worth, is that Muslims cannot be trusted and should not be trusted under any circumstances. I recall a saying I heard from a friend a long time ago, and it is still relevant today, "Not all Muslims are suicide bombers...but all suicide bombers are Muslims" We as a country have GOT to STOP tip-toeing around these jerks!!! Until these "peaceful" Muslims come out in numbers and CONDEMN terrorism and help to stop the Taliban, Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, the PLO, Al Shabab, and a host of other MUSLIM terrorist groups, I will continue to rant right here that I believe Muslims are untrustworthy animals. Call me a hate-monger, I don't give a crap what you think.

I am tired of putting up with it; you should be too.

30 October 2009

Breasts on TV? Oh the HORROR!

Now I've seen everything. I read a story about a Washington DC television station airing a two-part series concerning breast exams. WJLA is the station and they are planning on airing the series during the "fall ratings sweeps" in order to maximize awareness of breast cancer and to instruct on how to correctly perform a self-breast exam. In order to show how a breast self-exam is done properly, they intend to show the bare breasts of two volunteers...that's right kids, bare, uncensored, non-blurred women's breasts.

If we were in Europe this would be no big deal. From my travels across Europe I saw just how laid back Europeans are when it comes to the naked breast. Here in the good ole USA though, one group, The Parents Television Council, is raising their concerns over this. Their concern...and I quote, ""We hope that WJLA-TV is not using a crucial public health issue as a ratings stunt, and that the station has fully considered what is appropriate to tell this important story to the public in the most suitable manner possible," the group said in a statement."

And to that all I can say is, "ARE YOU PEOPLE OUT OF YOUR RIGHT WING BIBLE THUMPING MINDS?" For CHRIST'S SAKE, this is NOT some sleazy soft-core pornography being aired; NO, this is a PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT promoting breast cancer awareness and instructing on how to do an effective self-exam! Leave it to some "family group" to try and attach a "sexually deviant" note to a show that could very well help some women in this country to detect breast cancer and survive it!

What is so wrong about a woman's breasts!? Don't you idiots have anything better to do than worry about this? This is TYPICAL of Bible Thumping Right Wingers...your kids can watch violence and bloodshed..can be advertised to non-stop, but to SHOW a woman's breast?? HORRORS!!! Our kids will turn into sexual deviants because they saw a bare breast on TV!!! Oh the horror...the agony!!! We can't have a bare breast on TV!!!

Oh we can't have that! Just like we can't have comprehensive sex education or abortion. No, no, no, sex is evil and wrong and dirty...we just want to keep our heads buried in the sand and pretend we are still in the bucolic Fifties...while our kids die from STD's and breast cancer. WAKE UP MORONS!!! YOUR BUS IS LEAVING!!!

25 October 2009

Who Dat? Not Miami!

Well, shut my mouth. My beloved New Orleans Saints are now 6-0...yes, that's right, campers, SIX AND ZERO!!! The Saints are off to their best start since 1991! Another milestone was accomplished by the Saints last week...they actually WON after a bye week! Every Saints fan is unhappily acquainted with the team's penchant for losing after a bye week.

It sure didn't look like it was gonna be that way earlier today. When my wife and I returned from grocery shopping, I turned on the tv to see the Saints down 24-3 and I thought, 'oh hell, here we go'. I turned the game off with that all-too-familiar sinking feeling in my chest that I and every other Saints fan has felt every season since the Saints became part of the NFL in 1967. I knew this was going to be the "same ole Saints", great start until they meet a team that beats them and then...like always...they crumble.

One must be a masochist to be a Saints fan; humiliating loss after loss, promising starts only to go down in flames. Now it seems we may actually have a good head coach and a really good team. I'm sure everybody remembers Hank Stram, Dick Nolan, Dick Stanfel, Bum Phillips and later his just as incompetent son, Jim Mora, Rick Venturi, Mike Ditka and Jim Haslett...at least those are the coaches I remember for as long as I have followed the Saints...(I was born one year after they entered the NFL). Losing season after losing season we fans watched in pain and suffering...and I thought today was the day they were going to turn into the Saints of old when I saw that score.

Then something in my head told me to turn the game back on, so I did. What a shocker!!! It's the second half of the game and the really good team that is the 2009-2010 New Orleans Saints was back! They didn't crumble after being down so far. Nope, Sean Payton didn't panic and neither did the team...they just hunkered down and beat the only team that beat them in the pre-season this year. They overcame that 21 point gap and fought back and WON!! Now the Saints are 6-0 and the much touted Miami that was predicted to have an 11 win season is 2-4.

The Saints are really good this year...better than they have ever been, more balanced than they have ever been and better coached than they have ever been. Maybe, just maybe, this may be the year of the Saints...I almost don't want to say that out loud...I don't want to jinx them...but I am keeping my fingers and toes crossed. Who dat say dey gonna beat dem Saints? Not the Lions, Eagles, Bills, Jets, Giants or Dolphins, at least. Geaux Saints Geaux!!!!

21 October 2009

Reality TV...UGH!!!

I don't watch a lot of "primetime" tv on ABC, NBC, CBS or FOX; particularly the "reality" shows. Call me old fashioned but I prefer a scripted show with a plot...you know, like 'CSI' or 'The Mentalist' but the "reality" shows just annoy the hell out of me. I guess the reason they annoy me so much is because I just really don't care if someone can sing, dance, survive or any of the other banal topics on reality shows on these networks. Now, let me say this to you, I like a lot of the shows on Discover, History and Food Network; mainly, I think, because I find them to be topical, educational and interesting.

Last night, however, one certain network that airs one certain "dancing" reality show's synopsis read, "Dancers perform with three songs by Michael Jackson, each song from different stages in his career as a tribute.", or some crap like that. When I read it, I wanted to throw the remote at the tv. If you can't seem to figure out why I became so upset at yet another tribute to a child molester, let me say it here LOUD and CLEAR...this episode was yet another tribute to a CHILD MOLESTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Why not perform a tribute dance to the soldiers that died the same day Jackson died? How about a tribute to Ed McMahon or Farrah Fawcett who also died in that timeframe? We have real-life heroes fighting for us in Iraq and Afghanistan but the only thing these Hollyweird morons can do is pay tribute to a sick, twisted individual who, despite having incredible talent, became even more sick and twisted by "allegedly" molesting young boys!!! I mean, COME ON!!! At BEST, Michael Jackson was an ENTERTAINER!!! He was not a diplomat or head-of-state, hell, he barely registered as human if you ask me!

STOP THE INSANITY!!!!!!! Focus on what is IMPORTANT, like health care reform, the crumbling economy, the falling value of the dollar, and ohhhh, gee, yeah, there are those two pesky little things called IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN!!!! STOP CELEBRATING THE IDIOT MORON AND FOCUS ON BEING PRODUCTIVE!!!! ...and the beat goes on. America is getting dumber and dumber and I weep for the future, but hey, we can always trot out MJ and pay homage to him to boost our ratings!! We can stage a massive public funeral and not even have to pay for it...let the city of L.A. pay for it.

I wish I could say, "Okay, rant over" but it's not over. Maybe we could make our own reality tv show titled, "Too Stupid To Live", we can provide cheap entertainment to the slack-jawed mouth breathing reality tv suckers and chlorinate the gene pool at the same time...good idea, don't ya think?

13 October 2009

Happy Birthday!

Do you know what today is? Go on; take a guess what today is. I’ll give you a hint, today is a birthday. Still don’t know? Okay then, I’ll just have to tell you. Today is the 234th birthday of the US Navy! Yep, that’s right all you history buffs, on this day in 1775 the Continental Navy was established by the Continental Congress; the legislation authorized the Congress to build, fit out, man, and dispatch two armed vessels to interdict British merchant ships carrying munitions to the British forces in America. Over the course of the Revolutionary War, the Continental Navy grew to about 50 ships, with 20 or so active at the Navy’s maximum strength.

Now, I am going to take you on a journey through time where we will mark significant, but oft overlooked, facts on the history of what became the United States Navy. There has been a lot of grumbling recently about the “liberals” trying to destroy our armed forces and, therefore, rendering our nation impotent in its defense. This is not a new revelation, people! I would be willing to bet that most people don’t know that after the Revolutionary War, the Congress either sold off or dismantled what ships were left; it being deemed that a Navy was not needed now, in a time of peace. Smarter heads prevailed, however, and when the Constitution was ratified in 1789, there was legislation calling for the Congress to stand up and provide a navy. So, in 1794, the War Department ordered the building of six frigates. The War Department was in charge of the Navy until the Department of the Navy was established in 1798.

Despite arguments to the contrary by the Marine Corps, the Navy was, in fact, established before the Marines. We know this is true because we know the Congress first enacted legislation to outfit two warships on October 13, 1775. We also know that almost a month later, on November 10, 1775, the legislation was extended to stand up two Marine battalions. Just as the Congress dismantled the Navy after the Revolutionary War, they disbanded the Marines. In fact, ever since the Revolutionary War, we have evidence that proves the Congress, at the end of each major conflict, has tried to shrink the armed forces. It’s not hard to see it, everybody knows how the military was gutted in the 1970s after Vietnam…it’s almost as if our Congress refuses to learn its lessons!

The rest of the world would like nothing better than for the US to fall in stature, however, which is precisely why we must continually lobby and harangue Congress to not cut funding for defense. There is simply too much riding on the line to allow sharp cutbacks in funding. We must be ever-ready to defend our nation regardless of the cost. (There will be another post soon discussing the oxymoron that is the US Congress and its parties) So, to wrap this up for today, we say Happy Birthday to the US Navy and wish for many more! Until next time, farewell and following seas!

07 October 2009

The Final Four!!!

Well I’m back, did you miss me? I’m sure you are all wondering where I’ve been so I will tell you. My wife and I spent the last week in Chicago and Wisconsin on a much-needed vacation. I’ll fill you in on the details of that later but right now it is time for me to wrap up my Bill of Rights series. The last four amendments (7 thru 10) are relatively short so I will summarize them for you; remember now, do not take my word for it, you can research them yourself for a more in-depth look. Here we go!

First, let’s list the last four amendments below; they are:

7. In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

8. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

9. The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

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

The Seventh Amendment’s basic intent was to make a line of distinction between what a judge does in civil court and what a jury does in civil court. Judges can instruct juries and determine what can be heard legally in court. Juries can hear the evidence, weigh the relevance of each piece of evidence and decide if a lawsuit is viable, and can determine the amounts awarded in most suits (i.e. - damages, emotional suffering, etc.) in civil court.

The Eighth Amendment is probably one of the most abused amendments in the courts today. Death penalty opponents routinely invoke this amendment because they believe the death penalty falls under cruel and unusual punishment. The excessive bail portion is also sometimes abused by defendants who want to run away rather than face prosecution. Again, these are just my opinions; you will have to look them up for yourself to get the entire meaning of each amendment.

The Ninth Amendment is, to me, the most vague and hard to interpret of all the amendments. This amendment was brought about in response to fears that other rights of the people could be restricted since they were not explicitly outlined in the Bill of Rights. Actually it goes much deeper than that but at the time, certain rights such as the right to travel or the right to be considered innocent until proven guilty were the concerns of the day so this amendment was added to the Bill of Rights.

The Tenth Amendment is arguably the most abused of all. This amendment granted the individual states the right to self-govern, meaning the Federal government should not be able to force the states to do its bidding. One does not need to look very hard to see the abuse this amendment has taken over the years. Despite history revisionists’ attempts to teach the Civil War was all about slavery, the facts were and are clear. The Southern states asserted the Fed was overriding their Tenth Amendment rights and each voted to secede from the Union in protest. Thus the Civil War began and later, the brutality and cruelty the Union used to force the South back into the Union became the foundation for the Fed’s ongoing weakening of the authority of the Tenth Amendment.

Now, before anybody decides to excoriate me on my opinions it should be reinforced here that this solely MY opinion. If you are not sure my opinion is accurate, please research the Bill of Rights and come back here to straighten me out. If your opinion is different from mine feel free to voice your opposition. Remember though, if you wish to tell me I am wrong or misguided in my interpretation, you must be able to refute my opinion with FACT. Shouldn’t be too hard, huh? Later we will discuss other differences in opinion of the Bill of Rights such as the differing definition of “the people” in the First and Second Amendments. Should be fun!

23 September 2009

What Have I Done???

Alright, alright, I know; I said I would be "speedy" with my next post on the Bill of Rights...I am not pleased that I am so late in writing about the Sixth Amendment, especially given what it covers. I am going to give you a little quiz right now; what does the Sixth Amendment entail? If you guessed it entails the right of an accused to a speedy trial, you would be correct. In fact here is what the Sixth Amendment says verbatim: "In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district where in the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence."

Broken down, what we see is the Sixth Amendment "guarantees" a speedy, public trial by a jury of one's peers, ensuring the accused knows what crime the are accused of committing, the right to have an attorney to defend the accused in court and the right to have favorable witnesses testify on the accused's behalf. Pretty straightforward don't you think? Well it's not quite that simple, folks.

First off, there is no set time limit to define a "speedy" trial. In fact, the idea of a speedy trial is outlined like this: A delay of a year or more from the date of arrest or indictment, whichever happened first, is termed "presumptively prejudicial". The prosecution may not excessively delay the trial for its own advantage, but a trial may be delayed to secure the presence of an absent witness or other practical considerations. If a defendant agrees to a delay when it works to his own benefit, he cannot later claim that his Sixth Amendment right was violated.

Ok, so what about a "public" trial? Well, in 1966 the Supreme Court ruled that the right to a public trial is not absolute. What that means is, if excessive publicity could possibly affect the outcome of a trial, that trial can be closed to the public. Simply put, if the government thinks publicity could harm their case against the accused, they can ask for a closed hearing. Also, if the accused feels that publicity could affect his right to a fair trial, he can request the trial be closed as well...but the burden is on the accused to show proof that publicity would affect the trial.

Ok, so now we know that a speedy and public trial has several different meanings, but what about a trial by jury? Surely any accused person has the right to be tried by a jury, right? Wrong. If you have ever been to traffic court, you know what I am talking about here. Jury trials are dependent on the nature of the crime that was committed. If one is accused of stealing and the maximum punishment allowed is six months or less, a jury trial is not required. Likewise, the requirement to have 12 jurors and a unanimous verdict is not absolute. In the Fourteenth Amendment the Supreme Court held that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, while requiring States to provide jury trials for serious crimes, does not incorporate all the elements of a jury trial within the meaning of the Sixth Amendment and does not require jury unanimity...in other words, a defendant can be tried by six people and a majority vote is all that is needed to either convict or exonerate.

A defendant also has the right to know what charges are being brought, the courts cannot just have someone arrested and tried without them knowing what they are accused of...I'm pretty sure if you are accused of a crime, you are going to know what crime you are being accused of. Other defendant's rights include the right to confront his accuser and witnesses, the right to have an attorney represent him, and the right to represent himself.

Now there have been arguments in the past that this Amendment has been abused by career criminals in order to intimidate witnesses, rig juries, and essentially get off scot-free. In some cases this may be true but you are more likely to see this on Law & Order than in real life. Now I know I will probably be publicly flogged for saying that but, to me, it is true. Our justice system is the finest in the world and, despite a few flaws here and there, is the most fair to everyone. If you don't believe me, check out some of the outrageous stories you read in your email about idiots suing companies for their own idiocy (Winnebago being sued by the guy who crashed his motor home because he set it on cruise control and went to the back to make coffee is a good one), check out the hoax-buster site www.snopes.com. Most of the stories you and I have heard over the years are urban legends.

So, let's wrap this up, shall we? By virtue of the Sixth Amendment, one is not subjected to a kangaroo court, one will not languish for years in jail waiting for a trial, and one will always have the opportunity to defend one's self. So why are the prisoners at Guantanamo Bay not afforded these rights? Well, in my opinion, it is because they are NOT citizens of the United States and therefore are not allowed the rights and freedoms provided for citizens in the Bill of Rights.

Whether or not you agree with me on that point is moot. Yes, the Amendment does not specifically mention "citizens" per se but it does say, "...accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district where in the crime shall have been committed..." Those prisoners committed their crimes not on US soil but in the Middle East and the last time I checked there were no US states over there. Kinda proves my point, doesn't it?

11 September 2009

Do You Remember?

Do you remember? That is a question everyone is asking today. Do you know what happened eight years ago today at 8:46 am EDT? If you are an American citizen over the age of 10 you should have this date indelibly etched in your memory. Eight years ago today, at 8:46 am EDT, a hijacked airliner crashed into the Twin Towers in New York City.
I was stationed at Special Boat Unit 22 then; that morning we had just finished our morning PT. I was just getting out of the shower, putting on my BDUs and getting ready for the rest of my day. I was thinking about the Smoky Mountain vacation my wife and I were taking in a few weeks and what to get her for our first wedding anniversary on the 22nd.

That’s when it happened to me. As I was getting dressed one of the guys ran into the locker room yelling about a jet hitting the World Trade Center. Shocked, I hurried and finished and ran to the compound thinking, “Oh my God what a terrible accident!” As I crossed the quarterdeck, I stopped to look at the TV behind the watch station just in time to see the second jet hit the other tower. Right at that instant I thought, “We are going to war.” We all listened and watched in disbelief as the towers burned, horrified when we watched them collapse and shuddered when we heard the continuing news reports; a jet hit the Pentagon and another crashed in Pennsylvania. And just like that, we were transported away from the cozy little world that was life in the United States of America.

Now we were in a new world; a world of fear and mistrust, suspicion and dread. Everything we knew was gone. Numb in disbelief we went through our day as we went to Threat Condition Delta, the worst of the four; condition Delta is when an attack has happened and we are on full alert, ready for another imminent attack. If you don’t understand that part, just ask a veteran, they will know all too well what that means to us.

Fast-forward to this morning; I was driving to work, listening to NPR when Steve Inskeep, the host of Morning Edition, announced that through the day we would hear stories from survivors of that terrible and tragic day. John Vigliano related his story over the radio; he told us about his two sons, Joe and John Jr., one a member of NYPD and the other FDNY. He told the story of how, on the afternoon of September 10th, he spoke with John Jr. on the phone, their conversation ending with, “I love you.” then, on September 11th, receiving a call from Joe who was on his way to the Trade Center, “…this is a big one…” he told his father. This conversation too ended with, “I love you.”…and that was the last time John Vigliano ever heard from his sons, both perished in the response to the World Trade Center attacks.

As I sat in my truck waiting for traffic to thin so I could turn on to the highway, I started to cry. Every memory I had of that terrible day came flooding back and I started to cry, eventually finding myself sobbing uncontrollably; I felt like my heart had been ripped out of my chest all over again. As sad as I was at that moment, I could only imagine the pain and heartache Mr. and Mrs. Vigliano are feeling every day, much less this day. I recovered and composed myself and thought, “Good…it is a good thing I feel this way. Every single American today should feel this way.” I know that sounds callous and unfeeling but today I hope you cry; I hope today you feel like your heart has been ripped out of your chest all over again. I hope you feel that way today because that means you didn’t forget. As you remember today, please, please, please, stop, take a moment and remember the 2,752 souls lost on that day. Then go out and thank every veteran you see for fighting for our freedom and remember the brave men and women in harm’s way in Iraq and Afghanistan fighting to protect us. They are the true heroes, not the professional athletes, musicians, actors or politicians. Remember that, ok? I will.

09 September 2009

You Can't Make Me Talk!!!

Well, I need to first apologize for taking so long to continue my educational series on The Bill of Rights. Now, let’s get down to business, shall we? “My client takes the fifth amendment…” I am sure you have heard that line uttered in several movies and television shows through the years; I mean who hasn’t. Yes, it is true the Fifth Amendment means one can refuse to answer questions when the answer could provide self-incriminating evidence of illegal conduct. That’s all it’s about, right? Wrong!

The full reading of the Fifth Amendment goes like this, “No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.”

That’s a mouthful! There is simply too much information on the Fifth Amendment to put it all here so I will briefly cover the different aspects of this amendment. First, let’s talk about grand juries; what exactly is a grand jury? Well this is a jury of citizens that are presented evidence in a closed proceeding (meaning no media) by the prosecution. These people review that evidence using rules given them by a judge and they then determine if the evidence warrants a trial, in which case an indictment is issued to the defendant. This also means the defending attorney cannot be there when the evidence is presented and evidence that may have been acquired in violation of the Fourth, Fifth or Sixth Amendments can be presented as well. Here is the other kicker, individual states have the power to abolish grand juries if they want and can institute preliminary hearings.

The next part of this amendment covers something called “Double Jeopardy”…no it’s not the game show Jeopardy’s second half where the dollar amounts double. What double jeopardy means is if a suspect is found innocent by a jury of his peers, that suspect is acquitted and cannot be tried for that particular crime again. But hold on to your hats, this part does NOT apply to situations when a jury “deadlocks” or cannot make a unanimous decision one way or the other. In that situation, a judge can declare a mistrial and the court can try the suspect again.

Now we get to the self-incrimination part, kids! In a nutshell, this little clause means a witness does not have to testify in court if that testimony would incriminate the witness. So that’s it, right? Wrong again, bucko! The self-incrimination clause also applies to questioning by police AND evidence gathered. Ever hear of the Miranda Rights, or “the right to remain silent”? That part of the clause was also put there to ensure a suspect is not forced to confess to a crime they may or may not have committed.

Another part of this amendment is “due process”. So what is due process? Due process is the principle that the government must respect all of the legal rights that are owed to a person according to the law of the land. Basically it means if you are suspected of a crime and are arrested and tried, the government must make sure that your protections and rights were upheld during the entire process.

Now we come to my favorite part of the Fifth Amendment…Eminent Domain! What is Eminent Domain? Well it is the government’s power to take private property for "public use". The Fifth Amendment limits this power by requiring the government pay “just compensation” if private land is to be taken for public use. Unfortunately through the years, the definition of just compensation has been changed to “fair market value” of the property…which basically means the government can decide how much your property is worth. Originally, this clause tried to prevent the government from taking privately owned property for private developers. That was forever changed in 2005 when Supreme Court Justice Stevens wrote an opinion stating a government can take private property for developers if the development plan had a public purpose, saying that "the city has carefully formulated a development plan that it believes will provide appreciable benefits to the community, including, but not limited to, new jobs and increased tax revenue." (Kelo v. City of New London) Justice Sandra Day O’Connor wrote a dissenting opinion arguing the decision would allow the rich to benefit at the expense of the poor. All is not lost, dear readers, for many of the individual states have passed laws making it difficult for local governments to seize private property.

I hope I didn’t bore you with this very long narrative, folks. This little piece of mine only just touches on the highlights of the Fifth Amendment. As I have said before, don’t take my word for it, look it up for yourself and learn! Tata for now, folks…up next the Sixth Amendment…and I’ll be “speedy” next time!

03 September 2009

The Bill of Rights Part III and IV

When I announced I was going to write about the Bill of Rights, I intended to write 10 individual pieces, one for each amendment. Well, if you are an American citizen with even the slightest inkling of our Constitution and first 10 Amendments, aka The Bill of Rights, then you know there's not much to say about the Third Amendment. So, I am going to write about both the Third and Fourth Amendments today.

The Third Amendment has lost some of its relevance over the years since the Civil War; if you just don't understand what I mean, here it is verbatim for you, "No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law." This amendment was included in the bill specifically to prevent the government from forcing homeowners to house soldiers in their homes without their consent; if you are even a mediocre student of American History, you would know this was a common practice by the British government in our pre-Revolutionary War days.

In fact, I can only remember one incident where the Third Amendment was invoked; in 1979, in the state of New York, prison officials organized a strike and were promptly evicted from their residences that were on prison grounds. National Guard members were put in those residences since they were now running the prisons. The lawsuit the prison officials filed claimed their Third Amendment rights had been violated; this was rejected by the court and was appealed. The Circuit Court of Appeals eventually ruled the prison officials had a "reasonable expectation" of privacy regardless whether they owned their residences, since they legally lived there it was "their personal property" and therefore, under the Fourth Amendment, the appeal was granted and the officials got their homes back. This is just a bare reference to the incident, if you would like details you can look it up using this information: Engblom v. Carey, 677 F.2d 957 (2d. Cir. 1982).

Which now brings me to the Fourth Amendment, "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." This amendment should be self-explanatory, but it, as well as all of the other amendments, is misunderstood by a great majority of people. Its intent was to ban warrant less searches of private property by officials, a reaction to the British Government's penchant for using general warrants to conduct raids in search of materials that were thought to be attacking both government policies and the King, George II and later George III.

So basically, this amendment tells us the police cannot just come into your house and search for anything that could get you into trouble. Rather, the police must first apply for a warrant to search and then the warrant must detail what they are searching for. However, folks, this doesn't mean if you are driving erratically the police can't pull you over and search you or your car. Nope, your behavior can give an officer of the law a little thing called probable cause. In other words, if you give the officer a reason to suspect you are driving drunk, the officer can legally search you and your vehicle so...for all you malcontents out there who think a field sobriety test is a violation of your Fourth Amendment rights, think again (I say this because, as a former cop, I ran across this several times).

What it does mean is you have a reasonable expectation of privacy in your home and in your car. The government cannot just walk right into your home without cause and search for anything illegal. Nor can the government pull you over on the road "just because", nope kids, if you see the blue flashies in your rear-view mirror chances are you either did something or your car has something wrong with it like a burned-out light.

What else can happen, you ask? Well, let's say the neighbors have been calling the police about the smell emanating from your home, they think you're cooking meth in you garage. The police can come and investigate but cannot enter your property without a warrant so they apply for a search warrant that allows them into your home...they search your entire house but you're smart, you cleaned up the other day so they don't find anything...until they see something you forgot to throw away on your garage workbench...it's not specifically mentioned in the warrant but there it is, plain as day. They can't touch it because it's not in the warrant, right? WRONG. There is a little exception in the rulebook that talks about plain sight!

Basically, it means if they are legally searching for something but find something else that was out in the open, they can take it as evidence. Same thing in your car, if you are pulled over for, let's say speeding, and as the officer is writing the ticket he notices the dime bag of weed on the floorboard that you forgot to stash, he can arrest you for possession without having to apply for a warrant. Yep, you guessed it, I saw that one too when I was a cop.

So kids, I hope we learned something today. There is a ton of information out there on the Third and Fourth Amendments; much much more than I can cover here, so I hope you will do what it is I do whenever I read a column like this. Research the information yourself, don't just take the writer's word for it. We've got enough ignorant idiots like that here; I call them reporters.

Coming next - the Fifth Amendment, I promise I won't take the Fifth!

31 August 2009

The Bill of Rights - Part II

Okay folks, I promised you in a few days I would write about the Second Amendment. I should have done this earlier but "life" got in the way. It never ceases to amaze me how easily distracted I can get with other mundane events in the boring saga that is my life. Alright, enough of that, let us move on to the Second Amendment, shall we?

The Second Amendment is arguably the most contentious of the original 10 amendments that make up the Bill of Rights. Never have I seen one sentence cause so much discord. "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." To me, this one sentence is perfectly clear; the Founding Fathers realized that without an armed populace, the British Government would easily take us over and revert us back to a bunch of colonies. Hence the popular adage, "A democracy is two lions and a lamb voting on what to eat for lunch, a republic is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote"

The Left, specifically The Brady Campaign Against Gun Violence, consistently argue that the first part of the Second Amendment, "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State..." means the only people who should have guns are the military and law enforcement agents and therefore is the only part we should abide by. (It may be worthwhile at this point to bring up the fact the the Posse Comitatus would be violated and nullified if this belief were to be fulfilled, if you don't understand this, Google Posse Comitatus). The Right argues consistently that the latter half of the Second Amendment, "...the right of the People to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." means that all law-abiding citizens have the right to own weapons. Notice I did not say "GUNS", specifically, we will get to that.

The ongoing discussion of the intent of the Second Amendment shows historically that neither the Left nor the Right is 100% accurate. I can say this because if you look at each side, you will see each side conveniently leaves out the part that may contradict their intent. The Left does not want to admit that the People (i.e. - you & me) have the basic right to own weapons. The Right does not want to let the first half of the amendment confuse the people during this ongoing debate. The distressing part, to me, is neither side wants to give any ground or even sit down to discuss the possibility of reaching an agreement.

So, who is the Left? Are they covert agents sent by foreign governments to aid in the takeover and destruction of the United States? (Some may argue this is a definite possibility and to them I have to say put on your foil hats and crawl back under your rocks) Let's examine the Brady Campaign, the biggest voice of the anti-gun crowd, shall we? If you don't remember the early '80s, you may not know who James Brady is. James Brady was an assistant to the White House Press Secretary and President of the United States Ronald Reagan. In 1981, John Hinckley Jr. attempted to assassinate President Reagan; Brady was nearly killed and permanently disabled by bullets from Hinckley's gun. Brady and his wife then founded The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, a group whose only mission was to take ALL guns away from all citizens of the United States.

This is where the logic gets a little fuzzy. The Brady group has argued time and time again that their Act passed by Congress has contributed significantly to a reduction in violent crime. That, my friends, is a fallacy. You can click the link I provided to read for yourself the true results of the Brady Bill. The National Rifle Association has consistently fought the Brady Bill and consistently argues it is every law abiding citizen's right to own guns...and, to a point, they are right. I say "to a point" because some NRA supporters think this means a right to own any type of gun without having to accept any responsibility at all for prudent ownership.

So what is "prudent ownership"? Simply put, it is MY OWN definition that means law-abiding gun owners with small children should do everything within their means to protect their kids; education on guns and what they can do is a good start, keeping guns somewhere where the kids can't get them is another. The government shouldn't have to regulate how to handle this issue, it should be and most likely is a common-sense issue for the majority of gun owners in the US.

With that said, we are ignoring the elephant in the room. Why are we only talking about GUNS when the Second Amendments says ARMS? Arms means weapons which means ANY weapons, including swords, crossbows, knives and just about anything else that can be used as a weapon. Why are we focusing solely on guns? Why are guns the only hot button topic in this debate? The answer is very simple, my friends; guns are the weapon of choice for most violent criminals. Guns provide them with an opportunity other weapons don't; think about it, you are walking down a street when a gun is shoved in your face and you hear, "Give me your wallet." Much more intimidating than a guy with a pocket-knife saying the same thing, isn't it? This is the issue the Left has seized upon and wants to drive home. Guns invoke fear and fear is bad, hence their argument guns only belong to military and law enforcement.

The Left is WRONG, plain and simple. Sure, the Brady Bill brought us the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) which has done much to prevent criminals from legally purchasing firearms. Yes, I will concede that point. The problem is, it only prevents LEGAL purchases. Folks, when is the last time you heard of a criminal doing anything legally? Does any reasonable person believe criminals are going to actually ABIDE BY the law? THAT is the fundamental flaw in the Brady Campaign's argument! Gun control measures only inhibit us, the law-abiding citizens!

Another point I want to make is this, the "gun-show loophole" you hear about does not exist! I can prove that point! My wife and I attended a gun show here in Jackson, MS a while back because my wife was interested in purchasing a lightweight pistol she could easily handle. We found exactly what she wanted so we proceeded to purchase the gun. So, did you think the vendor just took our money and gave us the gun? If you believe there is a loop-hole in the gun laws, you would say yes...and you would be dead wrong. What happened was my wife filled out an application form and the vendor then called in her social security number and full name for the Instant Background Check and she came back clean so we were allowed to purchase the gun. See, the instant background check worked! Now, how many crooks do you think would have jumped through that hoop?

"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." It is our RIGHT to keep and bear arms to insure our security and freedom. It is our RIGHT to protect our lives and property from criminals who would deprive us of either or both. To me, it's pretty straightforward. I hope it now is for you, too.

27 August 2009

Ladies and Gentlemen...The Bill of Rights!!!

Lately I have been having conversations about the difference between rights and privileges and what, exactly, do they mean. One conversation I had recently turned into an accusation that I wanted to take away the rights of Christians. Not only is this not true, it flies in the face of everything I stand for which is, by the way, outlined in the Bill of Rights! So, dear readers, today I am going to cover the First Amendment and I will follow-up with a discussion on the other nine amendments in the coming days.

So, what do you think the First Amendment says? Does it specifically outline a separation of church and state? The left will say yes and the right will say no but the true answer is no...a literal understanding of the First Amendment does not mention anything about separating church and state. It does, however, IMPLY a separation of church and state. Now before my Conservative Christian readers get their panties in a twist let me ask another question. What, exactly, does the First Amendment say?

In an exact quote of the First Amendment we read, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

The very first line, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." says it all. Congress cannot pass legislation that specifically favors one religion nor can they prohibit individuals from practicing the religion of their choice. To some, like me, that implies a separation of church and state simply because it prohibits the state from declaring one religion as the religion of the state. To break it down further; the government is not allowed to tell you how to worship your higher power and they cannot prevent you from worshipping your higher power. To me, this also means an individual should be able to not practice any religion at all, if that is what they wish. In other words freedom OF religion for the individual also means freedom FROM religion for the other individual.

Just because I consistently rant about the so-called Christians in this country does not mean I want them to not have the right to worship. Nope, not one bit. I will defend their right to go to church and worship their Higher Power any time they want. What I won't put up with is these same people knocking on my door at all hours to "spread the word of God" or to "save me" or anything else of that manner. What turns my stomach is when I see these same Christians behaving like animals all the while looking down their noses at anyone different from them. Just like my favorite bumper sticker says, "I've got nothing against God...it's His fan club I can't stand" If you love Jesus, fine, just leave me out of it...leave me alone! So, how can that be confused with wanting to take away Christians' rights? It just doesn't wash.

Okay, now let's go to the second line, "...or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press..." Again, this is pretty self-explanatory to me. Simply put, the government is not allowed to control what you can or cannot say and the government is not allowed to censor the press. Freedom of speech means just that; you can say anything you want about any subject you want any time you want. Everybody is entitled to voice their opinion on any subject they choose! Lately though, I have been seeing and hearing a lot of talk about censoring certain people or certain shows because they are deemed "inflammatory" or "harmful to children"...and there is only one thing I say to those that espouse this censorship, "BULLCRAP!!!" Just because YOU disagree with my opinion does not give you the right to shout me down or shut me up...and vice versa...I may not like your opinion but I'll be damned before I let anybody else prevent you from voicing your opinion!

That said, you must understand that if I disagree with your opinion, I am going to let you know just that. If I think your opinion is unfounded, baseless or just plain silly, I am going to tell you just that. Exactly as I would expect you to do to me if you disagree with my opinion. What you WON'T do, however, is shut me up simply because I disagree with you just as I won't shut you up. There is a clear-cut difference there, and it puzzles me as to why so many people can't seem to understand that most basic concept.

Now, on to the third and final part of this wonderful Amendment, "...or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." So what do you think this means? If you think it means people are allowed to protest PEACEFULLY, then you would be right. If you think it means being able to write your Representatives and Senators to air your grievances without fear of repercussion, you would be right. If, however, you said it allows people to protest as long as they don't burn the flag or chant "End the War" or anything else of the sort, you would be dead wrong.

For example, I do not like anti-war protesters, I think they're nuts. I despise the good Reverend Phelps in Kansas whose flock protests the funerals of our fallen military men and women...BUT...as long as they do not physically harm anyone, they are perfectly within their rights to protest. What I WILL DO is be there with the Patriot Guard forming a protective circle around the grieving family to shield them from the insensitive, self-involved, and totally completely nuckin futs Kansas Bible Thumpers. So, how hard is it to see this basic concept? It's pretty damned hard, I can tell you, because those protesters make my blood boil and there would be nothing I would like more than to punch Fred Phelps right in his smarmy mouth.

So you see, folks, this First Amendment, along with the other nine amendments, guarantees certain rights to everybody regardless if everyone agrees or not. Personally, I think flag burners deserve to get their butts handed to them because they are a bunch of ungrateful bastards...but it doesn't matter what I think; they are allowed the right to do that and it does not matter whether or not I like it. So if you want to proclaim your Christianity and look down your nose at me, fine, that is your right...but you DON'T have the right to cry foul and accuse me of trying to take away your rights whenever I publicly bitch about you...understand? I certainly hope so.

19 August 2009

Okay, Now We're Getting Ridiculous

This can't be right. I read today from the AP that Texas Judge Sharon Keller is now undergoing a misconduct trial; the reason this judge is being scrutinized is because she would not keep her court open to hear the last-minute appeal from a convicted murderer. Wait a minute, that can't be right, can it?

According to AP writer Paul Weber, this is true. According to the story, Texas Criminal Appeals Court Judge Sharon Keller received a phone call at 4:45pm...got that...PM! The court normally closes at 5pm. So the lawyers for convicted murderer Michael Wayne Richard called at 4:45pm asking her to keep the court open past 5pm. Keller said no. So what was the result of this action? Michael Wayne Richard was put to death by lethal injection at 8:23pm that same day.

So why is the judge in trouble, you may ask? Well, let's look at the facts of the case, shall we? Michael Wayne Richard was convicted for the 1986 RAPE AND MURDER of a Houston area nurse and MOTHER OF SEVEN. Not only was he convicted, he was re-tried and convicted AGAIN! Are you keeping up with me boys and girls? This scumbag RAPED AND MURDERED a nurse and mother of seven! This woman's kids will never have their mother again. They will NEVER EVER be able to see their mother ever again! The fact he was convisted twice speaks volumes! That says to me, "Okay, so maybe they found more evidence that could overturn the conviction because he may be innocent..." but no, the court tried him a second time and he was convicted AGAIN!

So to me it is no wonder the judge refused to keep her court open past 5pm. Richard's sleazeball, scumbag defense attorneys didn't file the appeal in the morning; no, they waited until 4:45pm to ask the judge to keep the court open! Keep the court open for a worthless piece of crap waste of space who didn't deserve to live among humans!! So he was executed...GOOD!!!

This piece of garbage had already had several appeals turned down and was now trying to appeal on the grounds that lethal injection is cruel and unusual. WHAT?!? Let me get this straight, this dirtbag RAPES and MURDERS a nurse and mother...RAPES AND MURDERS...and then wants to claim that lethal injection is cruel?!? Hogwash!!!

So, it all comes down to this, he RAPES AND MURDERS, is CONVICTED TWICE, all his APPEALS ARE REJECTED, and his sleazy attorneys wait until 15 minutes before the court is supposed to close to request the court, judge, clerk, guards and EVERYBODY else stay past 5pm for a CONVICTED RAPIST AND MURDERER...and the JUDGE is wrong?

Not in my book. In my book the judge was right on.

18 August 2009

Of Bikers and Christians...

You know, I love riding my Harley, especially to bike rallies. For just about every American biker out there, the ultimate destination is Sturgis, South Dakota for the rally of all rallies. My wife and I rode up to Sturgis this past weekend. Now before any bikers call me out on it let me say this, we did indeed go to Sturgis; we rode to Sturgis, Mississippi for the Sturgis South Rally. For one very hot weekend in August this sleepy little town in Northern Mississippi grows from a population of about 300 to a population of about 10,000 or more. I had said a couple of years ago I would never go to this rally because it is billed as a "family friendly" event; anybody who knows me just the slightest bit knows how I feel about bike rallies and "family friendly" ain't it.

The reason my wife and I rode up is because we have friends that live up in that area and a close friend of mine was riding up from the coast to see us up there. Saturday was almost unbearably hot and humid in Sturgis and with no beer for sale (dry towns and counties abound in Mississippi) I thought I was going to die. Looking around it seemed as if everybody and their brother was clamoring to proclaim their Christianity to the world...and some of those folks scared me. I am usually afraid of self-proclaimed Christians because their actions are almost always anything but Christian. That and their smug, holier-than-thou attitude just puts me off and turns me against them.

Something happened this Saturday, however, and I feel like you need to know this. On that hot, muggy, miserable Saturday were two Christian churches, one on either side of town, handing out free, ice-cold water to every passer-by...all day long. Not a one of them had that attitude I so detest, even though each bottle of water came with their own propaganda leaflet describing the virtues of Christianity. I watched as people took the water and openly threw away the literature...and nobody from either church had a cross-word to say about that...if they were upset you wouldn't know it. My attitude towards Christians started to change a little that day; I mean here they were, sweating and sweltering, handing out what had to be close to thousands of dollars worth of water to everybody and anybody and NOT preaching!

It was the same with the CMA (Christian Motorcycle Association); they were serving up free water and free Gatorade to everybody and NOT preaching! This is where our friends were; they are members of the CMA and are active in their community, not active as in preaching but active as in prison ministry, donating time, money, food, water and anything else they can think of that will help someone else. All I could do Saturday was stand there and marvel at the capacity for caring these Christians possessed...I started thinking, "Not all Christians are hypocrites or smug jerk-offs!" By the time we left on Sunday on our bikes, my attitude had done an almost-180 towards Christians and Christianity in general.

Then I met someone who brought me crashing back to reality. I didn't meet this person face-to-face, though. No, I met this person by reading their diatribe criticizing and ridiculing another very close friend of mine's views. My "brutha from anotha mutha", IronHorseCowboy, writes a blog titled, "The View From Downrange. We don't always agree on political viewpoints but we do hold so many identical beliefs that you wouldn't know we disagreed in politics. My friend wrote a piece concerning the Bible and the lack of physical evidence to prove its supposed veracity, particularly in the Old Testament. I read his piece and agree with what he wrote. The Bible is merely man's interpretation of historical events and not a solid book of law we must interpret literally.

My attention was directed toward comments made by one of his in-laws that changed my attitude back to its cynical snideness to self-styled "Christians". This pompous waste of space insulted my friend's law enforcement experience and excoriated him over his views of the veracity of claims in the Old Testament. This idiot offered no real rebuttal with solid facts; no, he took the road most conservatives criticize liberals for, focusing on conjecture and baseless opinion combined with insults for anyone who disagrees with their smug know-it-allness.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, yes, and everyone is entitled to voice their opinion. However, NOBODY has the innate right to belittle, shout down, or harangue people who disagree with their opinion. I do not like this person, not one bit...and I think if I ever met him I would probably punch him in the nose...even though I know I'd probably go to jail or be sued for it because this guy does NOT "turn the other cheek", as his idol, Jesus, preached.

14 August 2009

Miscellaneous Observations...

You know, I have been thinking the past few days about several different subjects I wanted to talk about here. There are so many things running through my mind I may jumble some thoughts together here so bear with me.

This healthcare reform debate is confusing at best. On one hand we have the Demoncrats squawking about how dire our healthcare situation is and how many people are not insured. On the other hand we have the Repugnicans fanning the flames of fear by squawking about how this reform bill will create "death panels" to choose which citizens live and which die. For all I have heard I decided to try and make sense of it myself and this is what I found.

BOTH sides of the debate are right and wrong and both sides are lying and telling the truth.

Let's start with the Dems, shall we? Yes, it is true there are many citizens in our country that have no health insurance and the reasons are widely varied; some had coverage but lost their jobs in the recent economic meltdown and subsequently lost their coverage. Yes there are those who are working at minimum wage jobs or the like that do not offer health coverage. I think it is commendable the Dems wish to help as many as they can BUT we have to look at the other side of the coin. Part of the problem with healthcare is the sheer number of illegal immigrants who are overloading our emergency rooms...these people are NOT legal citizens of this country yet they are overwhelming our healthcare system. Another part of the problem is we have a disproportionate number of citizens who have never done an honest day's work in their lives yet they expect to be taken care of by the government. There are also those who dropped out of school, have no education to speak of, and work at minimum wage jobs because that is all they can get. These people are the greatest burdens on our country's health and welfare system. Another problem I foresee with this healthcare reform is this: they are grossly underestimating the sheer number of people who will flock to a government option and we will simply run out of money.

So now let's look at the Reps and see what they merit. As far as I can tell, they are telling the truth that this healthcare reform plan will indeed greatly increase the deficit. That's about it for where they are right and telling truth. The argument that reform will create "death panels" is a bald-faced lie. The provision we are talking about is doctors will be reimbursed for providing COUNSELING on end-of-life care and this COUNSELING is VOLUNTARY. So basically what it does is gives Grandma and Grandpa the FREEDOM to ask for COUNSELING from a doctor without having to pay for it. Wow, it provides increased FREEDOM and CHOICES, something the Reps supposedly stand for! So far I haven't heard or seen anything from the right that looks like a viable alternative...only their bashing of the Dems' plan. In fact just about the only thing I agree with the Reps on this plan is the need for tort reform and reasonable limits on malpractice awards.

So now, let's look at what I see is going on with this reform plan. While I think the Dems have a noble purpose in mind and have good intentions, I think they are grossly and tragically underestimating the impact this program will have. It's really not that hard to see; all you have to do is look at the digital transition converter box coupon program and cash for clunkers; both of these programs are failures because Congress grossly underestimated the response to these programs and RAN OUT OF MONEY.

What I think the Dems are missing is there is a huge number of deadbeats in this country who will take advantage of any entitlement program (i.e.- welfare, food stamps, healthcare) and this will cause a burden too great for our economy to sustain. All people...yes, ALL...will jump at a perceived "something for nothing" offer if it looks promising enough; if you don't believe me, look at how many people are STILL falling prey to Nigerian e-mail scams.

There is also the thought that companies in the US are hobbled because they pay through the nose to provide healthcare coverage for their employees; the result is US companies are not as competitive as their rivals in other countries. I am not sure if I agree 100% with that thought but I WILL say I believe that people who do not hold a job at all, have never held a job, or only hold minimum wage jobs, OR are in this country illegally are the biggest burden of all.

My proposed solution is to fix the education system first, get people EDUCATED and TRAINED to do more than minimum wage jobs...save the minimum wage jobs for teenagers looking for extra cash...then work WITH companies to SHARE the cost of healthcare for employees...and finally, CUT OFF the illegals in this country...they are not citizens so why should they be eligible for healthcare on our dime? Please note that I only advocate cutting off ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS, not immigrants who legitimately and legally become citizens of this country. If we don't provide an incentive for our "working poor" to improve themselves we will never get out of this mess...why can't everybody see that?

04 August 2009

Islam Means Peace...NOT

Hello folks, I'm back again and the subject today is my ongiong study of Islam. We hear alot here in the States about how we are oppressing Muslims and we do not understand the true meaning of Islam. It has been suggested that we become better educated on Islam in order to understand it better. Well, I read a story today that perfectly describes the true meaning of Islam and I just had to share.

In Sudan, UN Media reporter Lubna Hussein was arrested on July 3rd by the Sudanese police along with 12 other women in an outdoor cafe. The charge was "indecent dress" because they were wearing PANTS in public. All but Hussein and two other women were flogged (flogging is when they take a whip or cat-o-nine tails and whip them across your bare back) at the police station and paid $120 fine. Hussein and the two other women decided to go to trial in order to draw international attention to their plight. Hussein is now on trial, a multitude of women showed up to protest the trial and were subsequently BEATEN by the police...for protesting what is considered the oppression of women.

You can read the article yourself, I have not made any changes to it nor have I ad-libbed any of this story. I just wanted to share yet another observation of a "peaceful" religion that does not allow women to wear pants and has them flogged 40 lashes for having the audacity to wear pants in public. Oh the horror!

Kind of reminds me of the Pentecostal religion here in the States...women are not allowed to get their hair cut or wear makeup or pants. These are the people the far right (GOP) seems to love so much...I heard a friend come up with a rather accurate term for them. I hope no offense is taken because I am going to steal it here...I propose a new name for the Republican Party...the TALIBORNAGAIN...kinda catchy, don't ya think?

03 August 2009

Bulldog's Super Happy Fun Time!!!

Hey kids, do you know what time it is? That's right, it's time for another episode of Bulldog's Super Happy Fun Time! Today we are going to go over some recent events that will leave you scratching your head wondering what in the world is going on?

First, let me pose a question to you...it'll be easy, ready? Here we go: Which self-interest group has recently become publicly outraged over an inconsequential remark made by an equally inconsequential person? If you guessed Jessica Simpson pissing off American Indians (Native Americans for the PC Police) you would be right! Evidently, she was being interviewed and the question came up about if she would take back the expensive boat she gave her ex-boyfriend...the eternal loser Tony Romo. She answered with, "No, I'm not an indian giver!" Seems there are a few "Native American" self-interest (i.e.- special interest) groups who are outraged at the audacity of Jessica Simpson.

Wait a minute...is this true? Doesn't everybody know this is the chick who thought Chicken of the Sea was really chicken, not tuna? Isn't this the airhead who proclaimed her undying love for the other airhead Lachy only to divorce (as if that was a big surprise)? Come on people, this is NOT a smart, important person we are talking about here. As like Hollywood actors, musicans and professional athletes, this person is about as important to society as a mosquito...merely a small nuisance to be shooed away with a wave of the hand. So, why is it a group of "Native Americans" would get so upset at such an innocuous statement as "indian giver"?

Most of us grew up using that term to label kids who would take things back they gave you when you made them mad. The thought that indians would actually take back things they initially gave never occurred...ever. So why get so upset? Why did a group of advocates for "mentally or physically challenged people? get so upset at a stupid line uttered in an equally stupid movie (Tropical Thunder) where yet another inconsequential idiot (Robert Downey J.) said the dreaded word "retard"? Why why why?

Why is it there is always some interest group out there scrutinizing everything famous people say to find any type of offense? Why are becoming the United States of the Offended? For Pete's sake, people, grow some thicker skin!!! Come on, does it really hurt you?

Political Correctness has caused enough damage, wreaked enough havoc, and hurt more feelings than anything else in this country. We have become a nation that no longer values competition and the lessons learned in winning and losing. No, instead we have become a nation of whining, blubbering "me too" idiots. Nowadays kids get a trophy just for showing up! Go to a Little League Tournament and see what I'm talking about. Even the losing teams get rewarded! What is the value in that? What are these over-indulged kids going to learn besides the expectation that the world owes them recognition and appreciation even though they have done nothing productive?

Look at Hollywood, the music industry, and professional sports...hell, take a look at television! We have an entire CLASS of people who provide NOTHING to society except entertainment and they get paid MILLIONS to do it! Couple that with "helicopter parents" whose hovering and smothering reinforce the ideal that those are the people to emulate because they "deserve" recognition and fame and you have exactly what you see now...a "Native American" group angry because an airheaded dumbbell uttered the horrible label "indian giver".

Give me a break, people. Seriously, these entertainment types are not important to our survival as a nation...what they think and say means nothing. Try to remember that before you get your panties in a wad over them...okay?

21 July 2009

I Believe...

You know, soon after the dust settled from my last post, someone asked me a question. The question was, "Your posts are all over the place. You say you are a Democrat and voted for Obama but your posts seem to lean right. So, what exactly do you believe?" I've been contemplating that question for a few days now and I think I'm ready to lay out what I believe.

I believe in an honest day's work for an honest day's pay. I believe if you are good in your profession, you should be rewarded appropriately meaning a paycheck and a benefits package.

I believe in education; I believe educational opportunities abound in this country and it is only the fool who doesn't see that. Even public schools offer opportunities to learn and get ahead, one just has to work a little harder to do it.

I believe one makes one's own luck; it is stupid to sit there and blame bad luck when bad things happen.

I believe religion is the opiate of the masses; I believe religion nowadays is nothing more than a tool used by unscrupulous people to manipulate the weak-minded.

I believe if there truly is a God, He will speak to me directly, not through some stupid email chain letter or prayer chain email or virtual candle emails. I do believe, however, in treating others how I would like to be treated.

I believe if one is going to CHOOSE to do drugs and later becomes addicted, it is not my fault nor my problem so I should not have to pay even more taxes to take care of that idiot.

I believe homosexuality is NOT a choice; marriage should be for EVERYONE.

I believe if one feels the need to advertise their Christianity by putting a fish on their car, obtaining a personalized license plate for their car, putting a bumper sticker from the local Christian music station, or placing the word "Christian" anywhere in their business logo is anything but a Christian.

I believe driving a vehicle is a PRIVILEGE, not a right and society should act accordingly, meaning HANG UP THE DAMNED CELL PHONE!!!!

I believe in helping the poor...to an extent; supporting the poor for their entire lives is NOT what we had in mind. I believe if one collects a welfare check or food stamps, one must act accordingly i.e.- with HUMILITY, not flashing credit cards while driving in a Cadillac Escalade or a Hummer yakking away on a damned cell phone!

I believe if a person decides to drop out of school for any reason (other than it is completely necessary to support the family) and therefore cannot find employment beyond a minimum wage job, one gets what one deserves; it is completely unfair to expect the productive members of society to pay more in taxes and increased prices because of the federal government raising the minimum wage.

I believe everybody should be able to expect to live a healthy life BUT I do NOT believe in paying even more in taxes and even losing some veterans' benefits to pay for the healthcare of the idiots I described above...you know them, they contribute nothing to society except a burden.

I believe ALL military veterans are due the benefits they receive and ANY attempt to reduce them is an egregious offense. Further, I believe teachers, police and firefighters should also be eligible for benefits like veterans because THEY put THEIR LIVES on the line everyday just like the military.

I believe the "tax the rich" ideology is inane; increasing taxes on the rich only means the rich will spend less in order to not have to pay extra taxes...much like the "luxury yacht tax" of the 70's...the rich simply stopped buying yachts which almost killed an entire industry.

I believe human beings should be expected to display at least some sort of modicum of common sense; tort reform, to me, means if one orders a cup of coffee one must reasonably expect the coffee to be HOT...as such, if said coffee is spilled one does NOT sue the server of the coffee.

I believe personal injury attorneys are a scourge on this nation; if one jumps a fence that has a WARNING SIGN and is subsequently injured as a result of jumping said fence and ignoring the posted WARNING sign, any attempt to sue should result in the offending personal injury lawyer being disbarred and then tarred and feathered.

I believe in the rule of law; I believe in the right to self-defense; I believe that when seconds count, the police are only minutes away; therefore I believe wholeheartedly in the Second Amendment. If one argues the need to repeal the Second Amendment "for our own good", said individual should be forced to live in the ghetto for six months with no bodyguards, guns, knives or anything else that could possibly be used for self-protection...they must only rely on the local police department. This way the sadly misinformed individual will learn a very hard lesson in the need for the Second Amendment.

I also believe in the following: opening gifts on Christmas DAY not Christmas Eve, there should be a law outlawing astro-turf and the designated hitter (yes, I loved the movie Bull Durham).

Lastly, I believe Huckleberry Finn, Atlas Shrugged, David Copperfield, Band of Brothers, Catcher in the Rye, 1984, Animal Farm, Moby Dick, Job:A Comedy of Justice, and Stranger in a Strange Land should be required reading for all high school students prior to graduation.

So there it is, the core of my beliefs; so why don't you sit down and really think about what you believe in and share with the group?