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What A Long Strange Trip It's Been
Saturday, 12 May 2007
Should Morality Be Debated and what about the 2nd Amendment?
Mood:  caffeinated
Topic: Politicians
We are indeed a country of laws and procedures not meant to be circumvented for either well intended or nefarious purposes. I do not see a need to amend the second amendment, but a true need for tighter gun control legislation. I think whenever anyone begins to assert the need to further limits civil liberties, it is prudent to tread cautiously. Making moral judgments on gun ownership only invites others to make moral judgments about a woman's right to control her reproductive system or many other topics which really shoud not be dictated by public legislature. Morality should not be the government's business since we are all unique. Unfortunately today, things are not debated with detachment and rationality, but with emotional religious zeal.

This should not be reduced to "Guns are bad" but "Are guns safe? Is there a screening process in place that would keep guns from the hands of individuals who are of questionable sanity? Is there enforcement of this process? Is there a rigorous training, testing, and licensing course for individuals on the proper handling of firearms? Are their high enough taxes on firearms to fund gun violence prevention programs, gun education and awareness campaigns, and a fund to aid the victims of gun violence?"

The second amendment ensures the right to bear arms, and yes, it was a different time and place when that idea was written down, but human nature has not changed. People will always feel they need a way to protect themselves from each other and sadly, from their government. If you do not believe that, drive around and count the number of bumper stickers with the slogan "You'll get my gun when you pry it out of my dead hands." There are many of those in America's heartland.

I am not a gun advocate, but I am an advocate of civil liberties, peace and domestic tranquility; things that are going down the toilet in America today. The right to bear arms was listed as number two in the amendments. Protection of a person's life and property were and are pretty important to many, just as the protection of free speech. Why are so many trying to fight this battle?

In a nutshell, this issue of gun control, along with other polarizing issues such as abortion, and gay rights have been swept to the forefront to blind the American public and keep them distracted by these moral dilemmas. Let me step onto my high horse for a moment and quote Alexander Hamilton from the Federalist Papers, "A firm Union will be of the utmost moment to the peace and liberty of the States as a barrier against domestic faction and insurrection." A firm Union; a strong central government. Hamilton goes on to point out that Greece and Italy were beset with distractions with which they (the people and leaders) were continually agitated. "From the disorders that disfigure the annals of those republics the advocates of despotism have drawn arguments, not only against the forms of republican government, but against the very principles of civil liberty. They have decried all free government as inconsistent with the order of society, and have indulged themselves in malicious exultation over its friends and partisans." For those unaware - despotism is a form of government by a single authority, either an individual or tightly knit group, which rules with absolute political power. HELLO - Bush Administration and the so-called Republican party plus associated cronies.

The morality issues are distracting us from the real issue. The central government has gradually gotten weaker, farming out its duties and responsibilities to its citizens to the private sector. The problem with that is that people do not elect those that run the private sector corporations, but stock holders do. And who are stock holders? Usually the very wealthy. Special interests, big business and corruption have hamstrung the workings of our government for their own gain. If you asked me which would I rather solve, the gun issue or the fact that many elected officials are beholden to special interests, I would rather solve the latter, because it will not matter what I think if my elected official does not feel beholden to uphold my rights over those of corporate America. How can we get real gun control legislation passed in America if our elected officials are in the National Rifle Association's pocket?

Hamilton nailed modern day America back in the late 1700's and he was writing this (the quotes above) about the Greeks and Romans. If we do not learn history we are doomed to repeat it.

Do you need a gun? No, probably not, but do I have the right to deny you of your right to own one?

Sorry, I got off on a tangent a little and rambled. Chalk that up to sleepy brain and too much caffeine.

Posted by amiga/trippiehippie at 8:10 PM CDT
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Friday, 11 May 2007
An Email I Sent to Senator Sam Brownback
Mood:  irritated
Topic: Politicians
This is the text of an email I sent to Sam Brownback. I received a letter in the mail as a response. I'll scan it and attach it to this blog later. Here is more on Senator Brownback's 'compassionate conservative' ways Brownback Announces Candidacy of Ideology Over People

RE: Supplemental Spending Bill

Should President Bush foolishly veto this supplemental spending bill, please work with Democrats on a compromise. I fully understand arguments on both sides, and it seems perhaps two senators and a few representatives have the right idea. A timetable is needed or we will be in Iraq forever if this Administration’s handling of the war is any indication. Yet, the timetable does not need to be public. Make it a classified timetable so as to not alert enemies of the State to our plans. There are many things that are classified or secret that don’t get leaked to the public. Congress is the balance to the Executive Branch. It's time for you to represent the wishes of your constituents, Sam. I've sent this same message to Todd Tihart and Pat Roberts as well. Work with the Democrats, please.

RE: Your Campaign

Your actions will dictate the course of mine. Sumner County is going to go Democratic in the Presidential election just like it did for Governor, all because of your ultra-conservative views. You shouldn’t expect strong support for your campaign for president just because you’re from Kansas. You are going way too radical right and isolating many. You may just drive more moderate Republicans to go looking for a more conservative Democrat.

Posted by amiga/trippiehippie at 4:40 PM CDT
Updated: Friday, 11 May 2007 9:06 PM CDT
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