Midnight Express was a powerful film released in 1978. The story was about an American being arrested in Turkey where the onus was on him to prove his innocence. The exposure of the Turkish legal and prison systems was so great it almost destroyed that nation’s tourist industry.
Most Americans strongly support the idea that the burden of proof lies with the government. That a person is innocent until proven guilty. Turkey is one of several nations where the opposite exists.
While I’ve always supported this basic premise I may be changing. Frequently TV cops and lawyers justify incarcerating someone by arguing, “well they may not have done this crime but they’ve done enough other things.” I so believe that Donald J. Trump and members of his family are so guilty of plural crimes I find myself increasingly willing to turn away from this innocent crap. There seems to be so many stinking turds in the Trump closets that somehow one had to be placed there by someone named Trump.
For several weeks now I’ve taken a serious look at the AR-15, trying to separate truth from fiction. The only truth I’ve found is that there is great disagreement. While the AR-15 is America’s favorite rifle there seems to be a wide diversity of opinion about its standard ammo, the .223 cartridge. I Googled the title of this post and saw lots of people claiming the .223 is not what our military should be taking into combat.
I read a statement from an Army sharpshooter about how many bullets it took to finally take an enemy soldier out. You’ll find lots of disagreement about the .223 being an effective bullet for deer hunting. You’ll also find some articles by ER and trauma doctors who have seen the damage up close and personal.
One trauma doctor said the damage done by a .223 looks like a bomb went off inside the victim’s body while being hit by a 9mm can seem to be not much more than a knife cut. What the .223 does to the body is caused by its velocity. As it travels through the body the bullet is traveling at such a high rate of speed it sends out a shock wave that compounds its effectiveness.
So while I don’t see any mechanical difference between a hundred year old semi-automatic rifle and the latest version of the AR, I do see a great difference in their respective ammunitions. I’ve said in other posts that while I’m not opposed to the AR I am opposed to any device that increases the number of rounds and the rate of fire. Maybe it’s time to consider the permitted velocity of civilian .223 ammo.
Click HERE for an informative article about the damage done by the .223 cartridge.
Ever see Chris Rock’s take on violence in the schools and gun control?
Many of you are familiar with Trae Crowder, The Liberal Redneck. He’s kind of a liberal version of Jeff Foxworthy except that he says “fuck” a lot. I find him funny and often dead on in his social and political rants. Here’s Trae’s most recent take on what happened in Florida and some of the solutions offered.
I just read an article in the Lexington Herald Leader about Pike County, KY’s school board authorizing qualified teachers with concealed carry permits. As a retired teacher I am very opposed to teachers taking on the added responsibility of armed guards. There are many things that I find abhorrent about this but nothing bothers me as much as the level of training, skill, and fitness needed for the task.
We’ve all seen enough TV news about our infantry troops training for urban warfare. These professionals spend months and years honing the tactical skills needed. They are also required to maintain the highest level of physical fitness. They have to be strong, agile, and fast of foot. They also have to make instant life and death decisions. These are things not often found in America’s army of mild-mannered schoolmarms. Before teaching I worked jobs that demanded physical strength and endurance. Once I entered the classroom, however, I spent the next thirty years lifting sticks of chalk and passing out textbooks.
Think about the teachers you had in school and then go to YouTube and look at some videos about police and military tactical firearms training. Looking back over my career I can’t think of a single teacher, including myself, who should have been permitted to carry a weapon in the classroom.
When I was a kid my uncle Homer owned a single shot, bolt-action, J.C. Penny .22 rifle. I would often borrow it and go “plinking” at a trash dump on Wolf Rd. Firing the weapon required opening the chamber with the bolt lever, inserting a cartridge, closing the chamber, and cocking the rifle by pulling back a firing pin mechanism. Very simple, very reliable, very accurate, and very very slow.
Some years ago I traded for a Remington semi-automatic .22 rifle with a tubular magazine that held maybe 10 rounds of long-rifle ammo. The rifle required one trigger pull per round but you could very rapidly empty the magazine. Reloading was pretty slow, nothing like ripping out an empty clip and slamming a full one in.
I’m not sure I ever fired this weapon and later gave it to my grandson along with a .22 nine-round revolving target pistol.
I’ve been trying to make sense out of the Fort Lauderdale airport shooting and while none of these mass shootings make sense this one has a special element about it. The law seems to have allowed the shooter to have his gun near by.
With all the regulations regarding air travel that came out of 9/11 I’m shocked that you can travel with any form of firearm in any form of manner. Remember when you couldn’t even board a plane with a toenail clipper in your pants pocket?
As I understand it, the law permits one to travel with a firearm if you lock it and the ammo in a solid case and store that inside your checked luggage. You can’t carry it on to the plane with you and store it overhead, it must be secured in the cargo belly of the plane.
TRUMP TO COURT: I wonder how many Trump supporters realize their man has two upcoming court dates. One regarding the fraudulent behavior of Trump University and the other, charges of raping a thirteen year old girl in the 1990s.
When I was 18 years old, a senior in high school, and working part-time on the school’s maintenance crew for $.50 cents an hour I filled out my first income tax return. It was what was known as the “short form” and I made a mistake.
I used the chart that was provided in the instruction manual and mistakenly took the personal exemption not realizing that the exemption was already figured into the chart. Thus, I took two personal exemptions. Even though my income wasn’t enough to justify a tax liability I had nevertheless not done things correctly.
HYPOCRISY: What do you imagine the reaction would have been if Hillary Clinton revealed she had not paid federal income taxes because she “was smart.” Or what about President Obama or any other leading liberal politician?
FACTOID: Since 1980 when Ronald Reagan entered the White House until 2015, the seventh year of the Obama administration, there has been a steady decrease in the number of police shot in the line of duty. The annual number has dropped by 40%.
This is a horrible way to begin an essay but if I read, think and type fast enough I may get it competed before the next mass gun related killing spree takes place.
Gun violence statistics in America just keep getting worse. Following the most recent mass murder in Oregon the news sources have been flooded with gun violence statistics. Here’s but a small sample:
In the first ten months of 2015 we have witnessed forty-five school shootings. That’s more than one a week.
In the first ten months of 2015 there have been two hundred and sixty mass shootings.
So far this year 10,064 Americans have been killed by gun fire and 20,482 have been injured.
Since September 10, 2001 3,380 Americans have been killed by domestic terrorist attacks while 406,496 have died from non-terrorist related gun violence.
These numbers are horrible and far exceed those of any other developed nation. There are people in other countries who fear traveling to America just as Americans have feared traveling to places like Columbia in the midst of their drug wars.
Strange Fruit is one of the most haunting and eye-opening songs ever written. The frequent and accepted lynching of African Americans in the American South was widely unknown to many Americans. That ignorance began to weaken after the song’s release by singer Billie Holiday.
I’ve heard the song performed many times and by many performers but until now I wasn’t aware of its backstory. A friend posted the following article on Facebook and I decided it needed further promoted. It’s a wonderful account of the songs author and the part he played
FACTOID: “The Justice Department reported Tuesday that 1,574,700 people were incarcerated in the U.S. in 2013, up 4,300 from the prior year.” Fifty years ago our prison population was more like 300,000.