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    A Modest Proposal

    February 19th, 2014

    Every time I suggest here that maybe a few more rational handgun laws would be a good idea, I get flooded with responses from gun nuts (sorry, I mean concerned second amendment supporters; no, wait, I do mean gun nuts) asking how I would feel if I saw my wife or daughters being raped (these people spend a lot of time thinking about rape), or they post an article about some grandmother in Detroit frightening off intruders with her assault rifle. It comes down to two opposing and seemingly irreconcilable approaches: the gun people seem to think that the solution to gun violence is for more people to have guns; the idea being that, once everyone is armed, no one would dare actually pull the trigger. Call it the mutually assured destruction, or MAD principle. On the other hand, silly people like me have this crazy idea that a better way to reduce gun violence is to, you know, reduce guns.

    So I have a modest proposal, a compromise that I think both sides can agree on: let’s just arm only women.

    This meets the gun supporters’ repeated concern about the safety of their wives and daughters. As for my side, it’s not a perfect solution, but let’s be honest: what do George Zimmerman, Adam Lanza, that guy who shot that other guy in the movie theater, that guy who shot that other guy in WalMart, all have in common? Yeah, they’re dudes. Clearly, the problem is dudes with guns. So let’s make all guns with biometric triggers that simply won’t fire if held by someone with a y chromosome. After all, if women can’t be trusted to make their own reproductive health decisions, why should men be trusted to manage their own penises? I mean guns.

    A Socialist Mandate

    November 5th, 2008

    It has been an exhausting and exhilerating few days, and I will have much to write when I can make the time. Until then, I want to posit this simple question.

    The McCain campaign and its supporters have proclaimed that Barrack Obama is a Socialist. For the past several weeks, at every opportunity, they have trotted out this trope. Surely, anyone who voted for Obama must have heard this.

    Which leaves me with this interesting question for my conservative brethren: if Barack Obama is a Socialist, and we just voted  him into office with impressively large numbers, then does he now have a mandate to make ours a Socialist government? I mean, you believe in democracy, right, and the rule of the people? So if we willingly put a Socialist into the office of the President, then that must mean we want a Socialist government. As as supporters of Democracy, you will, of course, recognize that The People have spoken, and you will support our right to be governed following the principles that we choose.

    Isn’t that what the war in Iraq is all about? Giving a people freedom from tyranny, so they can self-determine? Well, the American people have made their choice: by your own words, we have elected a Socialist to govern, and now you must support that.

    Yeah, I thought so.

    I Choose Obama

    February 1st, 2008

    Although we’ve known for some time that it might come to this, it is only now starting to settle on me that the next Democratic candidate for President will be either a woman or an African-American. It is a stunning turn of events. As I have watched the process these past few months, and sensed which way the wind was blowing, I have said to all who care to listen that this is a good field of Democratic candidates, that any one of them would make a fine President, and that I will be happy to support whoever is chosen by the national party.

    Not that I haven’t had my favorites. I’ve admired John Edwards for the past four years and enjoyed watching him evolve into a populist candidate as he refined his message about the two Americas. Dennis Kucinich is (was) the only candidate this year that I had the honor to meet in person, and although we all knew he would not be the final nominee, he was my heart’s choice. (Actually, I did meet one other candidate before: twenty years ago, when I was living in New York, Rudy Guliani dashed across the street to shake my hand. He was running for State Attorney General and I didn’t like him then, either.)

    After seven years of unbelievably inept “governing”, I have found myself nostalgic for the simple scandals of the Clinton years, not to mention the reassuring financial scene of the 1990s. And I have always liked Hillary Clinton the person, so I find her candidacy exciting on many levels.

    Read the rest of this entry »

    Kucinich coming to CVille

    November 27th, 2007

    Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), Presidential candidate for the Democratic nomination, is coming to Charlottesville on Friday, December 7th. As reported in the Daily Progress “Kucinich is the only Democratic presidential candidate who currently favors impeachment of both Vice President Dick Cheney and President Bush”. Kucinich will be speaking that Friday evening at the Albemarle County Office Building. More information can be found at David Swanson’s site AfterDowningStreet.org.