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Version: 1.0
(July 25, 2005)

To The National Rifle Association

Dec 16, 2012 by Ugh


Dec 16, 2012, 23:24:18 John Thullen wrote:

I've been sitting here spinning a bullet on a tabletop, thinking about Mike Huckabee's and the usual suspects' God-removed-from-the-schools lament and then came across this post regarding Abraham Lincoln's last words invoking Jesus Our Lord, minutes before the Founding Father of the Modern Republican Party, John Wilkes Boothe shot him in the back of the head, despite the fact that God's security detail was swarming the very box seat where the president sat and Lincoln just minutes before had donned the armored hat and garments of God's bullet-proofed love:


Dec 16, 2012, 23:49:41 John Thullen wrote:

I've also been thinking about the remarkable fact that during the Civil War, the Christendom trenches of World War I, World War II, and the numerous Christian versus the infidels skirmishes throughout history, how the power of prayer and the frequent kissing of the Crucifix (the Romans and their substitution effect) gave protection of our soldiers from death and wounds.

Not one fatality. Not a scratch on any mother's son.

Until the Vietnam War when the godless hippies started listening to the Doors.

Maybe Huckabee and Fischer are on to something.

God, for his part, was smirking as the the Connecticut murders unfolded, knowing that some number of the children not shot and killed at that school, but rescued by their teachers and parents and the police, and in their parents' arms were in the sights of His numerous substitution effects -- perhaps one of them, as we speak, has a single lethal cancer cell lurking within, poised to metastasize.

Perhaps her parents have no health insurance and little in the way of financial resources -- another of God's little practical jokes, the punchlines of which are permitted to flourish in America because to do much about (in fact, to remove whatever measures we've taken as a society to combat the joking) it would violate the American audience's freedom to laugh.

Make em laugh, make em laugh, just as long as the government doesn't force them to laugh, they can laugh and then we can laugh ....

There's nothing to do.

Amor fati.

Dec 17, 2012, 00:46:39 John Thullen wrote:

There is this idea:

To which I would add that instead of asking Kindergarten teachers to volunteer for gun training and to carry a weapon, how bout Eugene volunteer his entire weapons collection and ammo to his local schools and volunteer to not replace his inventory, or volunteer to have his local property taxes raised to pay for the gun training and to purchase Miss Janey the firearms required to do the job, or raise the Kindergarten teacher's pay and benefits and codify those changes in the Teacher's Union contracts, and allow her to bring her weapon, loaded, to all Union/School District negotiations and strike demonstrations, and, well, voluntarism goes amuck.

Let me think about Eugene's answer to my demands.

"No can do", followed by a highly legalistic list of probable incentive- and disincentive-perverting results of implementing my requests.

Speaking of incentives, how bout if we tie the teacher's pay via her performance standards to the number (we'll call them notches) of armed assaults at her school that she had repelled before the assailant could a shot off?

Sorry, teach, three kids went down during that assault last school year. I'm afraid tenure is out of the question.

Bonuses to the teacher and staff for an assault-free school.

How bout bonuses to the armed crazy people in town NOT to assault schools, malls, etc. They may assault morgues, but only during non-work hours.

Dec 17, 2012, 00:54:27 John Thullen wrote:

This, too, under the heading "Ice Cubes Try Hell One More Time".

Framing the debate as gun safety seems tactically (non-gun people think tactically too) smart.

But I'm trying to imagine Brett Bellmore, his home surrounded by an Mobile Army Division, answering the government's bull-horned communicated demand for negotiation by citing his first demand that he be permitted to send his second down to the shooting range/armory and gather enough weapons and ammo for a standoff.

"O.K., as long as you send David Koresh out for arrest," the Army might answer.

"Nevah!" Brett would thunder. "He's babysitting my daughters!"

Dec 17, 2012, 01:06:29 John Thullen wrote:

Revisiting Miss Janey above.

Say she is tending class at a mostly white suburban school and hears what sounds like a scuffle in the hallway.

She rushes, armed, toward the disturbance to be confronted with two young males in a clench, who refuse to stop what they are doing.

One is a black kid, a bulge in his back pocket, dressed kind of urban thuggishly.

The other is a white kid, a bit nerdy, with specs and a bulge under his ski jacket.

There are Skittles scattered on the floor.

Given the setting, a mostly white suburban school, and given what we are told we know about the cultural roots of urban minority gang gun violence and what we are not told and don't seem to know about the cultural roots of white suburban gun mass murder, especially in schools, who ya gonna shoot, Miss Janey?

That'll do me for awhile.

This new hundred-round comment clip I bought privately is very cool.

Dec 17, 2012, 02:28:14 Ugh wrote:

Walking to the playground at the local elementary school today with my three year old:

Dada, what happened to the flag?

Dec 17, 2012, 08:30:35 Ugh wrote:

Which is to say, it was hanging at half staff and he noticed.

"it's broken"


"I'll tell you when you're 25."

Fortunately that sufficed.

Dec 19, 2012, 03:10:59 nous wrote:

True story...

I started taking Escrima classes just in case someone came into my classroom with a weapon. I am not a pacifist.

I have no categorical objection to firearms and wouldn't mind having a few, but they are not a high priority.

I have no objection to the 2nd Amendment, but think that we could enforce a less expansive view of it and still allow for both hunting and personal security uses.

I think the NRA is horribly misguided and wish that there was a sane and moderate voice in the debate over the 2nd Amendment that could steer the conversation towards a productive compromise.

I study and teach classes about violent video games and think that neither the APA nor the ESA are talking about the real issues that are at play in these games.

One of the best commentaries I've seen on gun violence was a documentary included on either the City of God or the City of Men DVD that looked at gun violence in Brazil and had a Brazilian police officer talking about how the flow of American made guns into Brazil mirrored and enabled the flow of South American drugs into the US. The firearms industry and the cartels need each other to drive their profits.

Dec 19, 2012, 04:05:58 nous wrote:

Also...I can't begin to fathom why they want to arm teachers, (though I think an army of highly trained and well armed union members might make a formidable bloc for the political left), and I certainly do not want a bunch of college students carrying firearms on campus. If the heads of the NRA were forced to teach first year writing and interact with college freshmen for a couple years they would not want them to have access to any weapon not made by Nerf.

Dec 19, 2012, 12:41:00 John Thullen wrote:

Hey Nous, I'm preparing a comment for OBWI and was wondering if you might have a link for the Brazil/U.S. guns/drugs issue you mention above.

Thanks for the help.

Dec 19, 2012, 21:57:12 DonaldJ wrote:

I decided not to put it in the thread over there, as it would just be a distraction from the main issue, but I think the troll accusation against Brett was wrong, LJ. Brett is annoying as hell much of the time, but (like Slarti says), I think he is sincere and when he makes sweeping statements about "you" being irrational, it may be bad form and stupid and maybe a rules violation of some sort (I haven't checked), but it's also a normal human reaction to being outnumbered. Besides, most of that post was substantive, aside from the part you quoted. Not that I agreed with the substance.

I think trolling is saying something you don't believe, just to get a reaction. Brett probably does believe his opponents are irrational.

Dec 20, 2012, 02:18:44 nous wrote:

John- I found it for you on youtube. The documentary is called News from a Personal War:

The comments I remembered are in 9/14.

Dec 20, 2012, 21:15:07 John Thullen wrote:

Thanks so much, nous.

I'll give it a look.

Dec 24, 2012, 20:56:43 libjpn wrote:

Hi guys,
Donald, sorry I didn't see this. The comment that I was referring to was this one


It doesn't seem to be coming up but it is at 5:52 am on the third(!) page of comments. The part that I specifically objected to was this

"Says a lot about your positions here, that your only hope of enacting them is to act while people are still hysterical and not thinking clearly. This is not the mark of a rational cause.

So, again I say, no. Maybe we can revisit this topic in a couple of weeks, when there's at least the potential you folks are thinking clearly, and you've had to give up on trying to exploit the grief. I think there's not much more to say right now."

I explained a bit over there, but by feeling was, and is, if a regular, like Brett, simply makes a statement to try and elicit a reaction from everyone else, it's trolling, it's not honest debate. I realize that may make 97% of the posts on every blog in the world trolls, but Brett isn't trying to explain himself, he wants everyone to get all mad and overreach and then he can go 'a-ha, I told you so' or 'the mask slips' or whatever.

This is not to beat up on you about this, but I don't think trolling is just saying what you don't believe, I think it is trying to get a strike, which seems to be the notion that is being invoked.

Again, apologies for not seeing this, some disruptions in routines here put my checking here on the back burner. I'll try to be a little more conscious as a new year's resolution.

Dec 25, 2012, 01:54:55 John Thullen wrote:

Every time I try to stand and give my point of view on trolling, I crack my head on the bridge overhead.

Dec 30, 2012, 01:47:17 DonaldJ wrote:

That's okay, LJ, I didn't see your response until just now, and yet I've been here several times since you posted it.

On trolling--well, I disagree, but don't really feel like getting into it too much. I think Brett is annoying, but I've seen people I really do think are trolls (mostly at other places) and IMO Brett isn't like that. He's an outnumbered, cantankerous individual who thinks the rest of us are irrational and he lets it show. I find that annoying, but not trollish. I can think of one person at ObiWi who was a troll by my lights (and was banned at one point), but he doesn't comment much anymore.

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