MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough calls out NRA…

Obama

This morning on MSNBC’s ‘Morning Joe‘, Joe Scarborough called out the NRA for their latest ad against Senator Joe Manchin for his role in the Gun Control Bill (Toomey-Manchin Bill) that was voted down earlier this year.  In the attack ad the NRA linked Joe Manchin to President Obama and NYC Mayor Bloomberg, Scarborough attacked the NRA for the misleading ad and also took the NRA to task for the image used for President Obama.  Scarborough noted how some people asked him if he thought the ad purposely darkened the image of Obama with shading, to make him look “more ominous”

It’s so obvious, look at his hands. It looks like he is a coal miner from West Virginia, look how dark they made his hands.  Look at the side of his face, this is a question that answers itself… You don’t have to call me up and ask me if I think the Washington NRA shaded Barack Obama hands… – Joe Scarborough

Here is a clip from ‘Morning Joe’ continuing to talk about the NRA:

As a fan of ‘Morning Joe’ I was a lil surprised Scarborough’s comments, my surprise was not in judgement of whether he was ‘right or ‘wrong’.  This is something I would have expected (not in a bad way) from his co-host Mika  Brzezinski.  Scarborough is far from being a Obama fan, so when a Republican like him makes an observation like this…  You can’t but take notice.

As always….

If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!

Talking Points Tuesdays – President Obama failure on Gun Control….

In 2008 candidate Barack Obama talked about re-instituting the Federal Ban on Assault Weapons; 4 years later we have a witnessed tragic shootings that have left a member of the United States House of Representatives (Gabrielle Giffords) recovering from being shot in the head and senseless murder/injury of innocent people trying to watch the latest Dark Knight movie (Dark Knight Rises).   While it is true that you cannot say for sure that these shooting could have been prevented with stricter gun control laws, what can be said is that the weapons used in the attacks would have been banned (AR-15 and extended magazine clip).  Of course having a ban of such weapons doesn’t guarantee no violence but it’s a start.  The last thing we should want to do is make it any easier for NUTBAGS like James Holmes to be able to purchase firearms and ammunition.

And as much as I will defend President Obama on some of his policies, I CANNOT DEFEND HIM ON THIS!

The NRA and nutbags within the GOP would have you believe that President Obama wants to take away your guns.  Well that is simply not true as President Obama has not done anything when it comes to gun control.  What’s sad is that Obama had the perfect opportunity to take up the fight of gun control when Representative Giffords was shot in the head; she survived along while 6 others died that day including a 9-year-old girl.  He had the sympathy of the nation but nothing was done….

There is no indication even if the president won re-election that he will pursue the federal assault weapons ban. Jake Tapper of ABC News reported that the White House has suggested that the president does not have the appetite to pursue stricter gun control laws.

“The president’s views on this are, as he has stated and as he spelled out in the op-ed that was published in an Arizona newspaper, which is that he believes we need to take steps that protect Second Amendment rights of the American people but that ensure that we are not allowing weapons into the hands of individuals who should not, by existing law, obtain those weapons…” – WH Press Secretary Jay Carney (reported by Jake Tapper)

Basically the president is saying, he has to SHOW that he is not planning to take people’s guns away as he can’t afford to lose any possible votes to Mitt Romney.

Sorry Barack, but if you have no appetite now when will you have one?

Hopefully we will not see another tragedy like Aurora, but then again didn’t we say that after the shooting in Arizona????

In case you forgot below here are some of the regulations included in the Federal Assault Weapons Ban:

Assault weapon (semi-automatic) refers primarily (but not exclusively) to firearms that possess the cosmetics of an assault rifle (which are fully-automatic). Semi-automatic firearms, when fired, automatically extract the spent cartridge casing and load the next cartridge into the chamber, ready to fire again; they do not fire automatically like a machine gun, rather, only 1 round is fired with each trigger pull.

In the former U.S. law, the legal term assault weapon included certain specific semi-automatic firearm models by name (e.g., Colt AR-15TEC-9, non select-fire AK-47s produced by three manufacturers, and Uzis) and other semi-automatic firearms because they possess a minimum set of cosmetic features from the following list of features:

Semi-automatic rifles able to accept detachable magazines and two or more of the following:
Semi-automatic pistols with detachable magazines and two or more of the following:
  • Magazine that attaches outside the pistol grip
  • Threaded barrel to attach barrel extender, flash suppressor, handgrip, or suppressor
  • Barrel shroud that can be used as a hand-hold
  • Unloaded weight of 50 oz (1.4 kg) or more
  • A semi-automatic version of a fully automatic firearm
Semi-automatic shotguns with two or more of the following:
  • Folding or telescoping stock
  • Pistol grip
  • Fixed capacity of more than 5 rounds
  • Detachable magazine

The earlier term assault rifle refers to rifles that are capable of fully automatic fire. By that definition the ban did not cover “assault rifles” at all. Instead, it created a new definition of “assault weapon,” a term that was broad enough to encompass all three categories of firearm (rifle, pistol and shotgun) capable of semi-automatic fire and having a combination of features as listed above, but did not include fully automatic firearms of any type.

As always….

If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!

Jason Alexander aka George Costanza plea for reasonable debate on Gun Control

In the wake of the shooting tragedy in Aurora, Colorado; Jason Alexander (Seinfeld’s George Costanza) tweeted a long message concerning gun control and the need for reasonable debate. In situations like this both pro/anti guns advocates talk from their respective extreme sides of the gun control debate. I agree with Jason Alexander that we at least need reasonable debate.

I don’t believe stricter gun control laws would have prevented this tragedy, but I do believe it can be debated that maybe the injury/death toll would not have been so high. One thing that can’t be questioned is that James Holmes is a NUTBAG, now how do we keep guns out of the hands of NUTBAGS??

Here is Jason Alexander’s long tweet on the gun control debate:

I’d like to preface this long tweet by saying that my passion comes from my deepest sympathy and shared sorrow with yesterday’s victims and with the utmost respect for the people and the police/fire/medical/political forces of Aurora and all who seek to comfort and aid these victims.

This morning, I made a comment about how I do not understand people who support public ownership of assault style weapons like the AR-15 used in the Colorado massacre. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AR-15

That comment, has of course, inspired a lot of feedback. There have been many tweets of agreement and sympathy but many, many more that have been challenging at the least, hostile and vitriolic at the worst.

Clearly, the angry, threatened and threatening, hostile comments are coming from gun owners and gun advocates. Despite these massacres recurring and despite the 100,000 Americans that die every year due to domestic gun violence – these people see no value to even considering some kind of control as to what kinds of weapons are put in civilian hands.

Many of them cite patriotism as their reason – true patriots support the Constitution adamantly and wholly. Constitution says citizens have the right to bear arms in order to maintain organized militias. I’m no constitutional scholar so here it is from the document itself:

As passed by the Congress:
“A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
As ratified by the States and authenticated by Thomas Jefferson, Secretary of State:
“A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

So the patriots are correct, gun ownership is in the constitution – if you’re in a well-regulated militia. Let’s see what no less a statesman than Alexander Hamilton had to say about a militia:

“A tolerable expertness in military movements is a business that requires time and practice. It is not a day, or even a week, that will suffice for the attainment of it. To oblige the great body of the yeomanry, and of the other classes of the citizens, to be under arms for the purpose of going through military exercises and evolutions, as often as might be necessary to acquire the degree of perfection which would entitle them to the character of a well-regulated militia, would be a real grievance to the people, and a serious public inconvenience and loss.”

Or from Merriam-Webster dictionary:
Definition of MILITIA
1
a : a part of the organized armed forces of a country liable to call only in emergency
b : a body of citizens organized for military service
2
: the whole body of able-bodied male citizens declared by law as being subject to call to military service

The advocates of guns who claim patriotism and the rights of the 2nd Amendment – are they in well-regulated militias? For the vast majority – the answer is no.

Then I get messages from seemingly decent and intelligent people who offer things like: @BrooklynAvi: Guns should only be banned if violent crimes committed with tomatoes means we should ban tomatoes. OR@nysportsguys1: Drunk drivers kill, should we ban fast cars?

I’m hoping that right after they hit send, they take a deep breath and realize that those arguments are completely specious. I believe tomatoes and cars have purposes other than killing. What purpose does an AR-15 serve to a sportsman that a more standard hunting rifle does not serve? Let’s see – does it fire more rounds without reload? Yes. Does it fire farther and more accurately? Yes. Does it accommodate a more lethal payload? Yes. So basically, the purpose of an assault style weapon is to kill more stuff, more fully, faster and from further away. To achieve maximum lethality. Hardly the primary purpose of tomatoes and sports cars.

Then there are the tweets from the extreme right – these are the folk who believe our government has been corrupted and stolen and that the forces of evil are at play, planning to take over this nation and these folk are going to fight back and take a stand. And any moron like me who doesn’t see it should…
a. be labeled a moron
b. shut the fuck up
c. be removed

And amazingly, I have some minor agreement with these folks. I believe there are evil forces at play in our government. But I call them corporatists. I call them absolutists. I call them the kind of ideologues from both sides, but mostly from the far right who swear allegiance to unelected officials that regardless of national need or global conditions, are never to levy a tax. That they are never to compromise or seek solutions with the other side. That are to obstruct every possible act of governance, even the ones they support or initiate. Whose political and social goal is to marginalize the other side, vilify and isolate them with the hope that they will surrender, go away or die out.

These people believe that the US government is eventually going to go street by street and enslave our citizens. Now as long as that is only happening to liberals, homosexuals and democrats – no problem. But if they try it with anyone else – it’s going to be arms-ageddon and these committed, God-fearing, brave souls will then use their military-esque arsenal to show the forces of our corrupt government whats-what. These people think they meet the definition of a “militia”. They don’t. At least not the constitutional one. And, if it should actually come to such an unthinkable reality, these people believe they would win. That’s why they have to “take our country back”. From who? From anyone who doesn’t think like them or see the world like them. They hold the only truth, everyone else is dangerous. Ever meet a terrorist that doesn’t believe that? Just asking.

Then there are the folks who write that if everyone in Colorado had a weapon, this maniac would have been stopped. Perhaps. But I do believe that the element of surprise, tear gas and head to toe kevlar protection might have given him a distinct edge. Not only that, but a crowd of people firing away in a chaotic arena without training or planning – I tend to think that scenario could produce even more victims.

Lastly, there are these well-intended realists that say that people like this evil animal would get these weapons even if we regulated them. And they may be right. But he wouldn’t have strolled down the road to Kmart and picked them up. Regulated, he would have had to go to illegal sources – sources that could possibly be traced, watched, overseen. Or he would have to go deeper online and those transactions could be monitored. “Hm, some guy in Aurora is buying guns, tons of ammo and kevlar – plus bomb-making ingredients and tear gas. Maybe we should check that out.”

But that won’t happen as long as all that activity is legal and unrestricted.

I have been reading on and off as advocates for these weapons make their excuses all day long. Guns don’t kill – people do. Well if that’s correct, I go with @BrooklynAvi, let them kill with tomatoes. Let them bring baseball bats, knives, even machetes — a mob can deal with that.

There is no excuse for the propagation of these weapons. They are not guaranteed or protected by our constitution. If they were, then we could all run out and purchase a tank, a grenade launcher, a bazooka, a SCUD missile and a nuclear warhead. We could stockpile napalm and chemical weapons and bomb-making materials in our cellars under our guise of being a militia.

These weapons are military weapons. They belong in accountable hands, controlled hands and trained hands. They should not be in the hands of private citizens to be used against police, neighborhood intruders or people who don’t agree with you. These are the weapons that maniacs acquire to wreak murder and mayhem on innocents. They are not the same as handguns to help homeowners protect themselves from intruders. They are not the same as hunting rifles or sporting rifles. These weapons are designed for harm and death on big scales.

SO WHY DO YOU CONTINUE TO SUPPORT THEM? WHY DO YOU NOT, AT LEAST, AGREE TO SIT WITH REASONABLE PEOPLE FROM BOTH SIDES AND ASK HARD QUESTIONS AND LOOK AT HARD STATISTICS AND POSSIBLY MAKE SOME COMPROMISES FOR THE GREATER GOOD? SO THAT MOTHERS AND FATHERS AND CHILDREN ARE NOT SLAUGHTERED QUITE SO EASILY BY THESE MONSTERS? HOW CAN IT HURT TO STOP DEFENDING THESE THINGS AND AT LEAST CONSIDER HOW WE CAN ALL WORK TO TRY TO PREVENT ANOTHER DAY LIKE YESTERDAY?

We will not prevent every tragedy. We cannot stop every maniac. But we certainly have done ourselves no good-by allowing these particular weapons to be acquired freely by just about anyone.

I’ll say it plainly – if someone wants these weapons, they intend to use them. And if they are willing to force others to “pry it from my cold, dead hand”, then they are probably planning on using them on people.

So, sorry those of you who tell me I’m an actor, or a has-been or an idiot or a commie or a liberal and that I should shut up. You can not watch my stuff, you can unfollow and you can call me all the names you like. I may even share some of them with my global audience so everyone can get a little taste of who you are.

But this is not the time for reasonable people, on both sides of this issue, to be silent. We owe it to the people whose lives were ended and ruined yesterday to insist on a real discussion and hopefully on some real action.

In conclusion, whoever you are and wherever you stand on this issue, I hope you have the joy of family with you today. Hold onto them and love them as best you can. Tell them what they mean to you. Yesterday, a whole bunch of them went to the movies and tonight their families are without them. Every day is precious. Every life is precious. Take care. Be well. Be safe. God bless.

Jason Alexander

As always….

If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!

Militant Mondays – When did Facts stop being enough….

Sunday’s episode of the ‘The Newsroom’ (I’ll Try to Fix You) was timely; in the episode Will McAvoy (Anchor) reports on the misinformation campaign against President Obama concerning his record on gun control.  McAvoy runs clip after clip of Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, and Glenn Beck talking about how Barack Obama wants to take your guns and destroy the 2nd Amendment.  The only problem is there is no evidence of such a campaign by President Obama, to show this McAvoy talks about the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence‘s report card on how Obama has performed in strengthen gun regulation.

*** This report card was based on Obama’s record after 1st year as president ***

Candidate Obama in 2008 was way tougher on gun control then President Obama; basically Obama has been a GREAT friend to the gun industry!

Information like this is not top-secret, you can easily Google this and find the facts.  Or at least I thought so….  Before last night’s episode of ‘The Newsroom’ I just so happened to engage my colleagues at work in a debate concerning gun control.  For the record these guys are smart guys who happen to love guns, and I respect the right for people to own a gun.  But the conversation quickly went into a death spiral when one guy stated that, “Barack Obama wants to circumvent the 2nd Amendment and take away everyone’s guns…”

Ummmmmm…….

Of course I tried to correct him but he was adamant that; when I asked where he got this information from he said the head of the National Rifle Association aka NRA.  GTFOH, so the organization that fights any attempt to regulate guns was his source?!?!?!?

Folks this is what we are dealing with today, I could understand if this was 1980… Before the internet, the 24 hour news cycle, and GOOGLE!!! But this is 2012, this is the INFORMATION AGE and we still have people who are just as ignorant as if it was the stone age.  As usual my stubborn nature did not allow me to just walk away shaking my head, so I went into how the president has not introduced any legislation toughening gun control.  I showed article after article supporting what I was saying…

Did it work??

Nope, instead of believing numerous sources this guy preferred to believe the opinion (with no facts to back up) of a few people aka NUTBAGS.  So what do we do when people prefer to believe the non-factual rantings of nutbags?

I have no idea….

I am the type of person who relies on facts and it disturbs me when people ignore them; I will always stand by the facts but I have ask.

Have I been fooling myself in thinking that at the end of the day facts will always win out?

As always….

If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!