Welcome to the Revolution


March For Our Lives delivered unprecedented protest history. Today, 800,000 young Americans marched on Washington, cementing their voice as the largest protest since November 15, 1969 when 600,000 anti-war voices denounced the Vietnam War.

Image result for march for our lives

March For Our Lives served notice to Congress and the NRA – “Let us pray with our legs, let us march in unison to the rhythm of justice, because I say enough is enough,” – Dimetri Hoth, senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High.

“To the leaders, skeptics and cynics who told us to sit down, stay silent and wait your turn, welcome to the revolution,” Marjory Stoneman Douglas student Cameron Kasky.

Welcome to the revolution indeed. 11 year old Naomi Wadler delivered one of the most powerful speeches in protest history –

Student after student stood at the podium, children forced to step up for all the adults who let them down. Welcome to the revolution.

NRA lug-nuts scoffed at revolution, tweeting –

“Stand and Fight for our Kids’ Safety by Joining NRA,”  “Today’s protests aren’t spontaneous. Gun-hating billionaires and Hollywood elites are manipulating and exploiting children as part of their plan to DESTROY the Second Amendment and strip us of our right to defend ourselves and our loved ones.”

Welcome to the revolution marks a turning point in U.S. history, the moment in time young voters called bullshit on NRA fear mongering. The future of America won’t back down. Welcome to the revolution.

Right?


A few minutes ago these words arrived as a text message from my daughter. Found on Twitter, she wasn’t sure of author or origin.

“How about we treat every young man who wants to buy a gun like every woman who wants to get an abortion – mandatory 48 hour waiting period, parental permission, a note from his doctor proving he understands what he is about to do, a video he has to watch about the effects of gun violence, an ultrasound wand us his ass (just because). Lets close down all but one gun shop in every state and make him travel hundreds of miles , take time off work, and stay overnight in a strange town to get a gun. Make him walk through a gauntlet of people holding photos of loved ones shot to death, people who call him a murderer and beg him not to buy a gun.

It makes more sense to do this with men and guns, than women and health care. Right? I mean, no woman having an abortion has killed a room full of people in seconds. Right?”

A Letter To America


Dear America,

I’m writing to inform you of a grave situation requiring immediate attention. Despite previous correspondence on the subject, your refusal to acknowledge or attempt resolution is troubling. Effective immediately –  it is unacceptable to hide behind the 2nd amendment, your “right to bear arms”  destroys the very fabric of your nation.

Today’s shooting at Seattle Pacific University killed one, injured 3 more. Further carnage – halted by a brave student who disarmed suspect Aaron Ybarra as he re-loaded his gun.  26 year old Ybarra has been arrested – KIRO news in Seattle reports Ybarra obsessed over the Columbine massacre, had traveled to Columbine and wanted to “shoot up a school”.

With flowers still fresh at memorials in Isla Vista California where Elliot Rogers recently killed 6 and injured 7 – America can no longer hide behind illogical protestations of constitutional rights to defend themselves.

Students don’t carry firearms in their lunch pail, movie goers haven’t a hand gun in their popcorn, office workers can’t pull a gun out of holsters. Consistent white washing of the gun problem must cease.  Any chance of regaining your former glory teeters on swift action – failing to pull heads from the sand will be your undoing.

Fooling yourselves with stock answers like ” guns don’t kill people, people kill people” or “mental illness, not guns is the problem” are laughably insufficient. Guns are your biggest problem – easy access to weapons  kills people. Crazy will always be crazy, mental illness is an issue unto itself – handing weapons to “crazy”, refusing to limit semi-automatic weapons, allowing self proclaimed militia groups to stock pile arsenals, bowing to powerful NRA lobby pressure – just makes you crazy.

America – you need to get a grip, snap out of your fuzzy illusions of an outdated constitution – demand gun reform. I know it won’t be easy, I realize your fundamental belief guns keep you safe is hard to shake. I sympathize with the backlash, the onslaught of pressure a new found backbone will create – change is never achieved without the fortitude of ordinary citizens demanding a better world.

Your childish refusal to grasp the gravity of this situation will ultimately lead to demise of the very nation you claim to respect. Stop embarrassing yourselves, all that stands between you and fantasy of your once great nation – is your  pig headed stubbornness to put reason before propaganda. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

Sincerely,

notestoponder

 

 

http://www.kirotv.com/news/news/shooting-seattle-pacific-university/ngFbf/

 

A Shifting Opinion


It’s no secret I have strong opinions regarding America’s constitutional right to bear arms My Canadian heart and soul lacks any point of reference to allow understanding of the NRA or gun lobbies. My stance is unlikely to budge when it comes to unelected, non-profit basking bullies being allowed to call the shots. Likewise fanatics like George Zimmerman, or the lust some Americans have for semi-automatic weapons. My tendency has always been to dismiss legal gun ownership outright. As a Canadian; our system seems to work just fine – hunting rifles yes, anything else and you have some explaining to do.

At least that was the case before an innocent response by wordpresser xbox2121 got me pondering.

http://xbox2121.wordpress.com/

Last night I wrote about the crash of Canadian cell phones for a number of nail biting hours from coast to coast. Pondering what we would do if an actual disaster took place and how it would be coped with. xbox2121 commented on his ability to survive at his rural property, and all else failing his ability to defend himself using his guns and ammunition. At that moment – a holy crap light bulb went off – I knew he was right.

My family has an emergency plan of sorts; actually more than one but in case of a true breakdown, our destination would be the homes of my brother and/or father 250 miles away. Why? They have guns – even if they are only hunting rifles – they have weapons, ammunition and mad skills on matters of survival without everything I take for granted. The truth is, the average Canadian city dweller wouldn’t last five minutes if bat shit actually hit the fan. Truth be told; if  finding myself in that situation, I would wish we had a gun for protection on that 250 mile march.

This unexpected shift of opinion is a double edged sword. For the first time in my life a small part of me “gets it”, while my head screams in outrage at a perceived questioning of  fundamental core beliefs. I loathe guns, abhor gun violence, detest the NRA and believe America’s gun obsession is out of control – at the same time I really want a rifle at my side if the unthinkable were to happen.

A Little More Gun Talk


Since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary, over 1000 Americans have been killed by guns. Think about that for a moment. Most of these deaths nothing more than a passing story on the local news. It hasn’t even been two months since America’s latest horrific headliner, yet 1000 people have been wiped from the face of the earth.

According to a report by Christiane Amanpour;  13,186 people were killed worldwide in 2010 by terrorist attacks. In the same year 31,672 Americans fell victim to gun violence. Her source for this data was a report by Tom Diaz of the Violence Policy Centre.

On average the number of people killed by guns in Canada is 600 – 1000 annually. Of those 80% are suicide deaths. Canada doesn’t escape gun nonsense; just last week a stray bullet came through a townhouse wall in Brampton, Ontario – killing a nine year old boy.

I’m tired of debating America’s “right to bear arms”, the NRA, and gun control. Likewise defending my perspective as a Canadian. I accept that arguing gun issues with America is like trying to reason with evangelical Christians. I realize my broad generalization of America doesn’t apply to all. Hopefully my exasperation will be recognized for what it is by those enlightened few who understand my ponder.

My hope is that; if only for a brief moment – people will grasp the magnitude of far too many gun deaths.

http://amanpour.blogs.cnn.com/2013/01/15/more-americans-killed-by-guns-than-by-terrorists/

Photo – Jessica Hill. The Associated Press, post Media News

Not Right America! (NRA)


MSNBC aired in the background as I dressed for work this morning. Back turned, mind closed to robotic dribble of an NRA member insisting armed guards in every school would eradicate mass shootings. Then NRA member dropped a grenade, arm every teacher. I stopped in my tracks. Excuse me?  Reporter asked – “What if the teacher didn’t agree?”  His response; “then I wouldn’t want my child in that classroom”

What’s wrong with America? Why is a pig headed NRA wing-nut extended validation by mass media? Am I too Canadian to grasp America’s affinity for free speech regardless of truth, consequence or detrimental divide? Who are these people? How can a non-profit tax exempt organization finance hand picked politicians and dictate public policy with impunity?

First stop, the NRA website. Their home page screamed “patriot”. Slick and interactive, proudly displaying an Eagle to mimic the presidential seal. The words “non profit” registered before I turned in disgust to Wikipedia. Formed in 1871, NRA was established to protect second amendment” right to bear arms ”  in the Bill of Rights.  In truth the NRA exists because the Union Army were lousy marksmen. NRA co-founder George Wingate traveled to Europe and fancied the level of training. Back in America Wingate lobbied the New York legislature to correct lousy shots by funding gun ranges. The NRA was born. The first NRA president was Civil War General Ambrose Burnside.

A humble enough beginning; completely understandable and practical in it’s time. This “non-profit” was funded by the likes of Remington and Sharps rifle manufacturers.  They established gun clubs, taught marksmanship and certified gun owners. The NRA of today is far more

Call me crazy but for the life of me I need to know how a non-profit society is able to become the most powerful lobby in America? Forget the gravy – all I want is a meat and potatoes answer. How can a non profit organization contribute millions of dollars to political campaigns? These people are not elected; yet are allowed to influence policy. How can we validate the NRA’s agenda by airing “press conferences” that subject reasonable people to nonsense?

I’m not an American, perhaps I’ll never understand.

Obama 'actively' supports assault weapons ban; NRA ends silence on school shooting

A protestor holds a banner during a march to the National Rifle Association headquarters on Capitol Hill in Washington Monday, Dec. 17, 2012. Curbing gun violence will be a top priority of President Barack Obama’s second term, aides say. but exactly what he’ll pursue and how quickly are still evolving. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Dear America,


Dear America,

I am writing to inform you of a grave situation requiring immediate attention Your stubborn refusal to let go of an antiquated  constitutional “right to bear arms” has directly impacted your bottom line. In order to stay competitive it is imperative that you take  action. Only those willing to adapt and make sacrifices will succeed in today’s world.

Tough choices need to be made for the good of the country. Ask yourselves this; did the Constitution intend that an automatic weapon be placed in the hands of every citizen, or was it written in colonial times to readily raise a militia in defence of the country? Ask yourselves why you allow the NRA and powerful gun lobbies to call the shots. Ask yourselves why you are so afraid of amending the constitution.

It doesn’t take a single visionary, it takes millions of concerned voices. It takes common sense, conviction, and determination. Remember the courageous people who fought to abolish slavery, demanded  women had a right to vote, or marched to end segregation. Speak up and let your voices be heard.

America – you do not have the right to blindly ignore your out of control gun laws. You have a duty to address your shortcomings and take action. You owe it to yourselves to recognize your mistakes; you owe it to the victims of gun violence to take your heads out of the sand.

Sincerely,

notestoponder

nra_heston_2.jpg