Thursday, July 2, 2015

On Bigotry and Intolerance

[Note: This was originally published here on August 1, 2012. It deals with the then-current kerfluffel about Chick-fil-a, but by the end it pretty accurately sums up my thoughts on the gay lifestyle, religion and gay "marriage." This is a repost because I think it still says everything I want to say about the subject.]

I've been called a bigot and intolerant (both directly and indirectly) many, many times in the last week over the Chick-fil-a thing and gay marriage simply because I'm a Christian and a Conservative.  From friends on Facebook and Twitter, from complete strangers in the same places and especially in "news" articles on the web.  The snarky, condescending rhetoric is thick.

For the record, here is the Webster's dictionary definition of "bigotry:"

'Bigotry' is the state of mind of a "bigot", a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his orher own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance".
You see?  By demanding that I accept something that I think is wrong and by  saying I'm some sort of a hatemonger because I don't support gay marriage and by treating my viewpoint with intolerance, you're actually a bigot.  Having a common disagreement of ideas is fine, but when you refuse to accept my viewpoint at all and start calling names and trying to force me to accept your viewpoint, not through reasoned debate or discussion but by intimidation and coercion then not only have you already lost the argument, but by definition that makes you an intolerant bigot.

I would like to respectfully request that everyone see where the controversy started and read the original interview that this whole kerfluffle came from.  The tone of the rhetoric simply doesn't match the resulting hysteria coming form the "tolerant" left.  

I simply don't get it.  Here is a guy - a leader of a corporation - and a Christian in a very candid moment saying that he doesn't think that gay marriage is in accordance with what he considers to be family values and what he understands to be God's word.  He's entitled to his opinion and to run his business the way he wants just as much as the next guy.  If you don't like what his business stands for, just don't buy their product - it's as simple as that. 

There are people out there saying, "but well, yeah- I support his personal right to say whatever he wants to, but his company gives money from the company's profits to anti-gay hate groups that lobby against gay marriage!!!!" Fair enough argument, I thought.  Then I realized that Chick-fil-a is a private company without shareholders that can do whatever it wants with its profits.  Then I got to wondering what anti-gay "hate groups" the company might be sending money to.  The only thing I could find referenced by these shrill people was "Focus on the Family" and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.  It's interesting to me that some people have started classifying anything they don't agree with as hate. 

But what really gets me is all the people demanding tolerance and calling people bigots are many of the same ones spewing some truly hateful rhetoric.  Here are some real comments posted in the comment section of Tennessee representative Diane Black's Facebook page after she posted a photo of her holding a tray of Chick-fil-a sandwiches (names removed to protect the guilty):

"Like she needs to eat another one of those sandwiches. Look at how fat that cow is". 
"Jesus would be so proud, as we all know, he was all about hate and intolerance..." 
"shouldn't that be in the shape of a swastika. Ahh, remember when these bible thumpers called jews "christ killers?" 'mericans'" 
"So far I've stopped at 3 for water...mentioning that Im far none have offered to feed a poor hungry person...( as Jesus would )" 
"A tray of chicken biscuits...and one turkeyneck." 
"Some peoples beliefs are as outdated as their hairstyle!"
And I could go on and on...

I would like to take a moment here to say that just because one doesn't support gay marriage doesn't mean that they hate gay people or want to see them die or be unhappy (ungay?) or wish them any kind of harm.  It simply means that from the beginning of time that there have probably been homosexuals out there as a small percentage of society. And also from the beginning of (human) time the concept of "marriage" has meant only one thing - one man and one woman.  Deviating from that definition is what gets people up in arms.  Take a look at polygamists.  They weren't and aren't accepted because they had multiple wives.  They are deviants from accepted societal norms.  The same is true of pedophiles and those who engage in beastiality.

But I guess what really bothers me is the vicious attack on Christianity itself.  People spouting truly hateful  and intentionally ignorant things such as:
"So far I've stopped at 3 for water...mentioning that Im far none have offered to feed a poor hungry person...( as Jesus would )"   
" should probably spend a little extra time studying Jesus's commitment to social justice in the Gospels this morning. I don't think He'd be very proud of you right now." 
"David, you're not a Christian. You just play one on Sundays. REAL CHRISTIANS do what their book tells them. Ever wore a cotton blend? Sinner. You should be stoned for that. "
"Right where bigotry & hate fit in, a bible study."

...and, again, I could go on and on...

How, exactly, is that not hate and intolerance (and ignorance) of Christianity and Christ's teachings?  I'm no Biblical scholar, but it seems to me that Jesus said to 'love thy neighbor as thyself' but said nothing about condoning and accepting their actions.

Until now I have not waded into the homosexuality debate - and I don't plan to, either.  I have friends and family members who are gay.  I'm not going to tell them they can't be gay. That's not my right - it's not any individual's right to force their beliefs onto another.  I simply have to tolerate it and let them live their lives. But those are not the people I have any issue with, anyway.  The people I take issue with are the people who insist on making gay marriage an issue and forcing it upon us as some sort of a civil right.

Simply put, I don't believe the way that a person chooses to have sex has the same standing as the color of their skin.

All that being said, I think that the solution is an easy one: leave religion out of it.  Christians need to accept that there will always be a "gay community" and that they will want to partner up just as "straight" people do.  But marriage has traditionally been a religious union.  Perhaps the answer is simply a governmentally recognized union that carries the same benefits of marriage, only without the religious connotations.

Words mean things, and the entire "gay marriage" debate boils down to those of faith wanting to uphold the traditional definition of the word "marriage," not keeping "people from having love" or "keeping gays from being happy," as I've seen many times in the past week. If the gay community would simply cede the word "marriage" from their debate and demands and accept a civil union, I suspect that Christians would be accepting of that. They will still not agree with homosexuality, but I suspect that they will be tolerant of it, just as they always have. Neither side will be completely happy or will get 100 percent of their way, but at least maybe then we can bring a little more civility back to the world.

We need it, especially now.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Texas Monthly Should Be Ashamed

*sigh* I have quite a few issues with this story in Texas Monthly.

It's stories such as this that made me cancel my subscription. Because of things like these:

"More recently, ice cream has become associated with being a good person and doing good works, even though the product really isn’t all that good for you. Honesty matters. Trust matters. We feed it to our children, after all. This is why Ben & Jerry’s, on its website, stresses its commitment to “progressive values across our business,” “climate justice,” and mandatory GMO labeling. This is why Häagen-Dazs wants you to know that the company has devoted more than $1 million to honeybee survival (“We want to keep those little heroes buzzing”). This is why Breyers pledges to use “sustainably farmed vanilla and fruit” and milk and cream from cows “not treated with artificial growth hormones.” Keeping up with modern times, Breyers also features lactose-free, no-sugar-added, fat-free, half-the-fat, carb-smart, and gluten-free ice cream."

No attribution on the claim of ice cream being a reward for good works. Or how unhealthy it may be. And how recently, exactly? Because I would peg that at an early 20th Century phenomenon, not a late 20th century or early 21st century one. You can look back to pop culture and movies from the '40s and '50s and see ice cream as a reward for good behavior and as a treat. Besides, what does reward have to do with being healthy for you? What daddy is taking his daughter out for a seaweed and kelp smoothie for a good report card, anyway? I’m sure it happens somewhere, but nowhere I’d want to live.

The rest of the paragraph is just dripping with sophisticated and enlightened Liberal condescension. Those hicks in Brenham couldn't possibly be enlightened enough to care about such Progressive causes and trends as honey bees and hormone-free milk and sugar-free ice cream, after all. 

Yet, even later in the article the writer admits that Blue Bell does a pretty good job of keeping up with trends: "The company adopted food trends with gusto: it built an empire of ice cream products that included about a zillion flavors, some seasonal and some not, including frozen yogurt, ice cream cups, ice cream without added sugar, low-fat ice cream, sherbet, Bullets, Mini Sandwiches, Banana Pops, Mooo Bars, several kinds of fruit bars, and more."

But that doesn't fit well into the enlightened Blue Bell = small town, hickish, conservative and simpleton narrative that the writer is building up to next.

"In 1989, as the company expanded beyond Texas, it started offering regional flavors, like Key Lime Pie for the Florida customers and Mississippi Mud Pie for those in the Delta. And even though the Blue Bell leadership pretty much ranged from middle-aged white men to middle-aged white men, Blue Bell also shrewdly moved into flavors like Mexican Vanilla—it had a dash of cinnamon—and tres leches con fresas to capitalize on Latino tastes ... And, of course, like all modern corporations, Blue Bell got involved in politics, generously supporting the likes of Dallas congressman Pete Sessions and Senator Ted Cruz, men who share their deeply conservative views of the Texas that was and the Texas that should be."

So we're to believe  that in a stroke of dumb luck and pandering, Blue Bell somehow (shrewdly - and with much mustache twisting and evil hand wringing, too, I suppose...) stumbled into the realization that Hispanics like ice cream, too, and decided to pander to them with. The fact that a bunch of middle-aged white guys are in charge somehow means that they couldn't possibly be in touch with the tastes of any other ethnic group but their own. Sheesh.
And then the bombshell that Blue Bell is a conservative company that supports “the likes of” Pete Sessions and Ted Cruz. Yeah… about that. According to the National Institute on Money in State Politics ( Blue Bell gives to both parties. Not equally, but who really expects them to in a conservative state like Texas? But the fact is that Blue Bell gave more money to a single Democrat candidate  - Bob Odom - than to any single Republican in a state race. Oh yeah, and it only gave $1000 to each of Cruz and Sessions, according to ( - hardly bankrolling a campaign, and hardly “generous,” in the words of the author. I’m pretty sure Blue Bell gives more to the local high school every year.

“By 2015, Blue Bell wasn’t a luxury product anymore, and it wasn’t so pure either—high-fructose corn syrup had become part of the recipe, and maybe the factories could be just a little bit cleaner. But it was right there behind Ben & Jerry’s and Häagen-Dazs. Like so many Texans, it had made it from a small town to the big time.”

Where the hell did this come from? “…and maybe the factories could be a little bit cleaner?????” That little sucker punch of a sentence was out of nowhere and was was completely un-attributed. Have there been cleanliness problems with Blue Bell reported before? Have ceiling tiles and cigarette butts found their way into every bucket of ice cream, like a little nasty prize at the bottom? Not that I’ve ever heard of. I have had the privilege of taking the WAY behind the scenes tour of the Blue Bell factory and I’ve gotta tell you - it’s one of the cleanest places I’ve ever seen. Could it be cleaner and more sterile? I’m sure, but not short of laying off all the workers and using only robots to make the old-fashioned ice cream or hermetically sealing everything and everyone in bubbles. That said, I’m with her on the HFCS. Seriously, Blue Bell - who at home making ice cream uses HFCS? No one. So don’t put it in “Homemade Vanilla.” But I digress…

From the Dallas Morning New: “A health department spokeswoman has repeatedly described the iconic Texas company’s inspection track over the years as “good” with “very few issues, and none that required a warning letter or penalty.” (

“Here is what normally happens when a product is recalled. There are lots of angry protests, with people bearing placards and chanting and, in the most-modern times, setting up accounts. Health experts weigh in. Congressional hearings are held. There are calls for more government regulation. Lawsuits are threatened and filed. The product and its company are vilified, mostly for not caring about the little guy. Some products come back from the brink, and some don’t: Tylenol did. The Ford Pinto did not.”

Tylenol is a product, yes, but it’s also a brand. The Pinto was a model of car. It was a product - a faulty product. But Ford is the brand. It still makes vehicles today. And Blue Bell is more than a product - it’s a brand that makes products. The writer’s failure to see the difference is appalling. Or is it? I don’t think it’s a coincidence that it comes at the end of a paragraph about other sensationalized and scary things like congressional hearings and lawsuits. And protests? Placards? Chanting? Has that happened? I drive by the Blue Bell factory every single day and haven’t seen any sign of such a thing. So why even bring it up?

“It wasn’t until April 20 that Blue Bell accepted reality, announcing a total and complete recall of all products. That same day, it brought in another PR firm, the global Burson-Marsteller, whose crisis-management team had represented Tylenol, Union Carbide (now Dow Chemical) in India, and the Argentine military dictatorship. More recently, Blackwater USA hired a subsidiary of Burson-Marsteller to help defend itself in a congressional hearing after the killing of more than a dozen Iraqi civilians in 2007.”

Oh my. The association of Blue Bell with the same PR firm that was associated with Blackwater and the Argentine military dictatorship? Clearly then, Blue Bell is just as evil. To borrow from another Texas iconic brand: “get a rope.”

But wait. They’re just a PR firm. They handle all kinds of clients who want to protect their brand - from Lady Gaga to Hormel to Behr paint. And now Blue Bell. Before this Blue Bell has never needed anyone skilled in crisis management, so I don’t fault them for bringing in the professionals -and one of the best. Recalls are high stakes business. But no.. Texas Monthly wants you to just go ahead with the Ted Cruz association and continue down the “Blue Bell is just another big evil corporation” trail with the references to Blackwater and dictators.

But where I almost lost it completely - and what made me sit down and write this piece - was this: 

“The supportive yard signs easily stretched all the way to Houston. Bun B voiced his support on Instagram. Gallery Furniture took out full-page ads. The “Come and Take It” flag, the one used by doomed soldiers in the Battle of Gonzales in 1835, showed up affixed to the Blue Bell logo all over the Internet.”

Here’s the thing. Any real Texan knows that the “Come and Take It Flag” and the battle of Gonzales ended well for the Texans and with Mexican retreat. The “soldiers” in Gonzales were not doomed. They freaking WON!

But don’t take my word for it - have a look at the Texas State Historical Association’s page on the battle. Go ahead. I’ll wait. (

You just lost any and all credibility as far as I’m concerned. You write for Texas Monthly and don’t even know basic Texas history??? Shame on you.

And finally, this:

“Psychiatrists would probably call the (over)reaction of the fans a narcissistic injury, that defense mechanism that kicks in when someone reexperiences a wound that dates all the way back to childhood, like when someone made you go to bed without ice cream, or teased you for being a dunderheaded Texan, or pointed out that what you believed in wasn’t really what it seemed.”

Ah, yes. Armchair psychology. Gotta love it. It’s gotta be because someone more supposedly enlightened than us told us that something we believed in wasn’t worth a pile of cow crap. Like Texas Monthly and this article, for instance? Or the Astrodome? Or the stereotypical Texan? 

Or maybe it’s because Blue Bell is as Texan as barbecue and heat (and goes well with each.)

The stupid suppositions in this article reads much like the highbrow condescension that’s found in The Atlantic and New Yorker, which make sense since its author, Mimi Swartz, was a writer for the New Yorker for years.

Blue Bell may well be in trouble and will take a long time to regain its footing. But the aspersions cast in this thinly researched, pathetic excuse for journalism are wholly unhelpful, unnecessary and unwelcome. Blue Bell is a great Texas brand and I, for one, will not savor the day that they ever decide to shut down or lay off workers because of piling on such as this. 

An important and treasured part of Texas is wounded and bleeding. Must we kick it while it’s down?

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Michelle Obama Creates Racial Strife

If you didn't know this was given in 2015, you might think it was given in the 1950s or '60s.

Surely we've come farther than this in 50 years.

Well, those of us who look for the good in life see that things are MUCH better than they were back then. We've come a long, long way as a society. Because there are those of us who choose to see it that way.

But then there are those, like Barack and Michelle Obama, who have a pessimistic outlook on life and can't see it. All they see is race. They see everything through the prism of race, and it distorts everything they see. Those kind of people are the ones ginning up the hate in places like Chicago, New York, Baltimore and Ferguson. And Tuskegee.

This speech wasn't productive. It was counterproductive. It was hurtful and divisive. In a time when we need leaders calling on people to ignore differences and to see each other as more than just the race that they are, this does the exact opposite.

Michelle Obama should be ashamed of herself for this. The fact that she isn't tells you everything you need to know about her and people like her who insist on colorblindness yet do everything they can to point out the color of peoples' skin.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Sneaking in to Disneyland

Yesterday, President Obama made a big mess. He just told illegal aliens that they can stay without fear of being deported. And then he had the nerve to say that he was doing this because he just wanted to work with Congress and for them to send him a bill to sign.

Uh... what?

Why now, Mr. President? If you are really serious about working with Congress to pass immigration reform, you would wait until the newly elected Congress takes office in January. Or you would have done this when your party had control of the House and Senate.

You say you only want to deport the "criminals," but you seem to ignore the fact that ALL of these people have broken our laws by entering into our country illegally, which makes them ALL criminals.

As the son of a LEGAL immigrant who did it the right way and worked hard to do so, I take great offense at this, President Barack Obama.

When my kids asked me awhile back about illegal "immigrants," I put it into terms they could understand: We went to Disneyland last year. We paid (and paid dearly) to go there. We bought our tickets and went through the gates. We are like legal immigrants and citizens of the United States.

Illegals are people who may pay to get to Anaheim, but then they sneak over the wall of Disneyland because they just want to provide a better time for their family. They ride the same rides we ride, eat the same food and have the same fun we do. But they broke the rules to get in.

Now, what if the Disney corporation decided to say "it's okay if you sneak in - we won't kick you out. In fact, go ahead and go to the front of the line. AND you get free food and drinks while you're here, too."

How would YOU feel if you paid to go to Disneyland and someone who wasn't even supposed to be there got to cut in line in front of you, time after time, after time?

Even kids can understand that it's not right and that it would be very frustrating.

It's pretty much the same with illegals.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Meanwhile, just down the road...

From KWHI: 

The Austin County Sheriff’s office will soon be equipped with some heavy vehicles. 
Austin County Judge Carolyn Bilski says some Mine Resistant Ambush Protection or MRAPs, that were manufactured at the BAE facility in Sealy are being given to the sheriff’s office. 
Judge Bilski says these vehicles will not be used for regular patrolling duties but there are many situations in which they can be used.  She recalls floods and other dangers of past years.
Wow. Things must be really, really bad in rural Austin County.

I still stand by my stance last month that local law enforcement agencies don't need military vehicles and equipment.

Incidentally, on my travels today, I passed by one of these vehicles sitting outside the sheriff's office in the tiny town of Meridian, Texas (population 1,493).

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Opening the Door in the Name of Saving Money

Yesterday I attended my very first Washington County Commissioner’s Court meeting. It’s something that I’ve been wanting to do for a very long time, but I work and am not usually available at the hours when they are held.  Yesterday, however, I made an exception because I was drawn to the meeting by a single item that was up for discussion – item 6: “Discuss and act upon granting the Washington County Sheriff’s office authorization to participate in the Texas 1033 Surplus Property Program and granting the County Judge authorization to sign necessary documents.”
The program is one that is authorized by the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) – you know, the thing that Forbes Magazine called “the greatest threat to civil liberties that Americans face” – to allow local and state law enforcement agencies and municipalities to purchase surplus and used military property and hardware, including (as listed by the Texas 1033 website) weapons, aircraft and armored response vehicles.
I listened as Sheriff Hanak explained that the program had “been around 25 or 30 years” and that the items that might be considered were rifles and pistols and office equipment, such as desks and chairs. He said that none of these items would be new and that there was a risk that “the maintenance would eat us up” if the item was in rough shape and so that they would have to be very careful.
Sheriff Otto Hanak then spoke about the availability under the program of vehicles such as Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) armored personnel carriers. But he admitted that they don’t have any plans to buy items such as that, partly due to the cost of maintenance on items such as tires. But I gathered from his tone that if the money were there…
Then there was a very brief discussion and the motion carried unanimously.
There was no opportunity for comments from the public. I didn’t honestly expect there to be because I learned a long time ago that although a meeting might be “open to the public,” there is rarely opportunity given for unscheduled public comments.
I’m disappointed that there wasn’t more discussion and questions on the part of the Commissioner’s Court. The issue sailed through relatively unchecked. There was even uncertainty as to whether the authorization would allow the sheriff’s office to make future purchases or whether those would have to be approved by the court, and I don’t recall a definitive answer being given. And by contrast, the court seemed much more concerned about discussion of a complaint procedure regarding a sewer line. It seems as though the issue had already been decided prior to the meeting and that this was just a formality.

But the cause for my concern is this: I see on the news with increasing regularity that some local law enforcement agency somewhere – often a sheriff’s department – has acquired a piece of heavy military equipment such as an armored personnel carrier. I see police officers increasingly clad in tactical armor that was once commonplace only on a battlefield. It’s quite alarming enough in high crime urban areas such as Chicago or Detroit, but the thought of such a thing in Washington County, Texas seems appalling.
I just don’t think it’s the kind of message that Washington County wants to send, either to people visiting our community or to its residents. It’s just not who we are. We’re a rural county that thrives on our wholesome image – on Blue Bell and bluebonnets and rolling hills and historical landmarks. Do we really want people to infer from this that there’s a rampant crime problem that would necessitate military hardware? Is it really that dangerous to be in Washington County? If so, why would anyone want to come here?
I also have a problem with the overly-vague nature of the sheriff’s request. There were a lot of possible items thrown around in the meeting that could be purchased, ranging from the MRAP to desk chairs. That’s quite a disparity! And yet it was said that the authorization needed to be given to participate in the Texas 1033 program so that the sheriff’s department could find out what kind of equipment could be acquired (I say “acquired” because there was also some question as to whether these items would be purchased at a discount or whether they would be free. Both terms were used in the meeting.) That justification reminds me a little too much of Nancy Pelosi saying that we had to pass the Affordable Care Act so that we would all find out what’s in it. I refuse to believe that the items available to the sheriff’s department would be hidden from view until after joining the program.
There’s also this: why now? Sheriff Hanak himself said that the Texas 1033 program (or a predecessor program) had been around 25 or 30 years. So why the sudden push to join it? Why not ten or twenty years ago? What’s so important now? What are we preparing for? Or are the government office chairs and desk just so delicious and irresistible that we simply can’t hold out anymore? Is our sheriff department’s budget so strapped that office items can’t be purchased, even at a discount, from an office supply vendor? Should we be taking up a collection? Are we in danger???
As increasing police militarization and government overreach and overspending (on a national and state level, anyway) are an increasing concern, is now the proper time to be making this move? We, as citizens, are forced to wrestle increasingly with distrust of our government entities. Everything form the NSA spying on everyone (and then lying about it) to the erosion of our rights through “free speech zones,” imminent domain property seizures, random highway checkpoints, firearm confiscation, the forcing of compact fluorescent light bulb use and even over-zealous homeowners associations have eroded our confidence in even the most local governmental entities. And that’s sad.
I’m quite sure that Sheriff Hanak and the Commissioner’s Court are honorable people and that they don’t have any intent on causing mistrust in local government or law enforcement. But that said, it is very important that we guard against opening ANY door, no matter how slightly, for government abuse or overreach. And I believe that approving the participation in this program does just that. It offers military tools to local law enforcement, and call me naïve, but I believe that the function of local law enforcement is to protect its citizens from crime and to enforce local laws. I don’t believe that it should function as a paramilitary organization that further turns our country into a police state. The local police are not at war. And what happens when we have a new sheriff someday?  What happens if that person doesn’t have the apparent self-control of Sheriff Hanak?
It’s important to remember that we’re talking about a county sheriff’s office, not the National Guard here. If it’s drugs we’re worried about, there’s a federal agency for that: the DEA. If it’s guns we’re worried about, there’s a federal agency for that, too: the ATF. And if it’s terrorism we’re worried about, there are federal agencies to handle that, as well.  If there were riots in the streets, well that’s where the National Guard comes in.
I’m not anti-police – far from it, in fact.  I know several police officers and deputies and they’re all great people. My objections are not personal – they’re purely philosophical. It’s just that I’m aware that police are just people, too, and governments are made up of just people. And I know that it’s human nature when one has a tool or a toy to want to find a use for it. It’s not the tool that misuses authority. It’s people – even the most well-meaning or otherwise honorable people just doing their jobs. The officers who confiscated guns in New Orleans after Katrina were people, just doing their job and following orders. Cops who break down doors to the wrong house or use excessive force are just people doing their job and following orders. Bureaucrats that close National Parks and open-air memorials are just doing their jobs, following orders. Agents who spy on Americans on American soil without warrants are just people, following orders.
“You’re paranoid. That won’t ever happen here!”  I can hear it now. But who would’ve believed a few short years ago that the sheriff’s department in Montgomery County, not too far from here, would have its own drones?  Who would’ve believed that the federal government would record every single one of our phone conversations and track all of our internet traffic without a warrant? Who would’ve believed that despite protection specifically enumerated in the U.S. Constitution that people would try to disarm Americans? It CAN happen here, and it always happens incrementally and usually in the name of security. Here, though, we’re opening the door in the name of the potential of saving a few dollars.
Finally, it’s also important to realize that this isn’t a conservative or liberal issue. Do a quick web search for “police militarization” and you’ll find articles expressing concern from the entire political spectrum, from the Huffington Post to the ACLU to the Washington Post to the Cato Institute. A whole lot of people are concerned about this issue.

So there it is: the argument by the nutjob who thinks that the sheriff buying some used office chairs could lead to a police state. Who knows – maybe this really is all just about office equipment. Maybe the questions I raised are just me being a little too sensitive to the news of the world. But can we really ignore the possibility that this decision has opened the door, even ever so slightly, to police militarization in our community? And at the very least, can we all agree that without vigilance that it might be possible someday, and that that would be bad for everyone? I’d like to think that our local government officials would be willing to take the time to deliberate such ramifications.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Again... Why Does Everything Have to Be About Gay?

From The LA Times:

Starting in 2015 the Boy Scouts of America's policy banning adult leaders who are gay will cost the organization donations from Walt Disney Co. 
Though Disney doesn't provide money to the Boy Scouts' national or local councils, the Burbank-based company with major theme parks in Anaheim and Orlando provides small grants to local troops and packs, said Deron Smith, a Boy Scouts spokesman.
 Here we go again.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Why Does Everything Have to Be About Gay?

I've read a lot of breathless punditry this morning about a bill in Arizona that passed the state legislatures and is now awaiting either a signature or a veto by the governor. The way the bill is being framed is that the bill specifically allows people who hate homosexuals from having to serve them because they are gay.  As usual, words like "hate," "discrimination," "anti-gay," "bigot" and "intolerant" are being thrown around by those who oppose the bill based on it being firmly against homosexuals.

But that's all just spin.

Read the bill for yourself here. It mentions homosexuals and gays a grand total of zero times. The gay lobby is simply spoiling for this fight and to cry "discrimination!" What the bill actually says is that an individual cannot be compelled to do something that violates his or her religious beliefs.

Furthermore, the burden is on the person making the claim that their religious beliefs would be violated. They must prove ALL of the following:


The gay community is up in arms about this because, as the Washington Post says:

"The catalyst for the recent flood of religious exemption legislation seems to have been a number of court cases that were decided in favor of LGBT clients who were denied wedding services. In August 2013, the New Mexico Supreme Court said that a photographer who refused to document a same-sex commitment ceremony broke the state's anti-discrimination law." 

However, the way the bill is written one can  refuse to per foam a service based on religious objection to just about anything. Yes, this law would give someone who disagrees with homosexuality based on religious grounds the right to refuse to work for a homosexual. But it also does much more than that. Consider these scenarios that would empower people's right of religious freedom under the law:

• A Baptist restaurant owner does not serve and does not allow liquor to be consumed in his establishment based on his religious convictions. This law would protect his rights to determine the activities that occur on his own property.

• A church building or meeting hall is rented out as a reception site for a Satanic wedding or gathering of some kind. This law would allow the church to refuse service to the Satanists on religious grounds.

• A Jewish baker receives an order to bake a cake with Nazi swastikas on it. Shouldn't the baker have the right to decline the order?

• A Unitarian gay couple who owns a bed and breakfast refuses to allow a Catholic priest to spend the night at their inn based on his (and their) conflicting religious beliefs. This law would allow them to make that decision.

• An atheist ... oh wait. Nevermind.

Some of these scenarios may seem farfetched, but none more so than a photographer forced to photograph a gay wedding against his or her will.

This bill is about the protection of religious freedom. All religious freedom.

Can we please stop making everything about gay and race, please? And can we please stop trying to bully people into chafing the way they think by using the gay and race hammer, as well? That would be great.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Gun Bans PROMOTE Violent Crime

From Brietbart:

"A new study published in the latest issue of Applied Economic Letters lays low nearly every claim made by gun control proponents and shines a light on the successes of concealed carry on a state-by-state basis.

Specifically, the study shows that less restrictive concealed carry laws save lives, while gun control can endanger them. It also shows that gun control measures like "assault weapons" bans do not reduce state-level murder rates."

In fact...

"Gius shows that the study actually suggests that "restrictive concealed weapons laws may cause an increase in gun-related murders at the state level."

This is a study of THREE DECADES of data, and it wasn't done by the NRA. Remember this for the next time the Lefties start trying to ban guns again (and they will...)

Monday, December 23, 2013

Homosexual is a Race

Via Yahoo News:

"GLAAD spoke with A&E representatives on Wednesday morning to discuss why people would be offended by the comments and calls to action. ”They took this very seriously, as soon as the news broke,” Ferraro said.

After the meeting, GLAAD issued its statement on Robertson’s comments. A&E initially released a statement from Robertson in which he said he would “never treat anyone with disrespect just because they are different from me.” But the network declined to comment itself until Wednesday night, when it announced the suspension, which GLAAD applauded.

“We believe the next step is to use this as an opportunity for Phil to sit down with gay families in Louisiana and learn about their lives and the values they share,” the spokesman said.

The organization is also currently researching companies who use Robertson as a spokesperson.

“Silence is agreement in this case,” he said. “With such egregious anti-gay and racist comments, those companies that choose to be affiliated with this family need to speak out.”

So let me get this straight... homosexuals are now a RACE and making remarks that you don't agree with the homosexual lifestyle is now a RACIST thing to say?????

Boy, we really are playing fast and loose with the "racist" card these days, aren't we? Robertson said absolutely NOTHING about race at all. His remarks were only about his belief that homosexuality is a sin based on his faith. And he's completely entitled to his beliefs. Saying he's anti-gay is accurate, but saying he's a racist... that's a step too far. But last time I checked, it's still his right to be anti-gay. We do still live in America, don't we?

Well, don't we????

And as for the notion on the part of this GLAAD spokesmosexual that it's an opportunity for Phil Robertson to sit down with gay families, sing kumbaya and to leeeeearn about their liiiiiives and about their common vaaaaaaalues.....pardon me - I just vomited. Twice.

Do we really think that Phil Robertson is saying these things out of ignorance of the homosexual lifestyle??? That perhaps it's just that he doesn't know that they're just people, too, and that they just happen to like to have wild monkey sex with other people of the same gender? Is that the issue? How stupid do you think this guy is? I'm quite sure that he knows what gay sex entails and also how he feels about it.

And again... he's entitled to feel however he wants about it because... 'MERICA!!!!

I'm sick and tired of those who are always preaching tooooolerance at the top of their lungs suddenly going apeshit whenever someone pops up with an opinion or a worldview that they don't agree with. How tolerant is that?

So now, after this article, I've seen Phil Robertson called anti-gay and racist. I've seen him called "hillbilly" and "redneck." I'm just waiting for Hitler for the win.

It'll happen. Just wait.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


"...street thugs, hoods, communists, agitators, grifters and idiots..." hilariously!

Losing Hope

This video shows police trying to rip a flag out of the hands of a protestor in D.C.

It's stuff like this that is making me lose hope that if the order ever came for the police and military to turn on the citizenry that it wouldn't be carried out.