You Defend ALL Rights for ALL People, Not Some of Them or Some People

Many moons ago, I defended this country as a United States Marine. It is, other than my wife and my son, one of the things that I’m most proud of and, surprisingly, I did it right. After a four-year stint with Uncle Sam’s Misguided Children, I’ve got the official documentation and diploma that says I was honorably discharged for my service to the country.

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Thus, this last weekend – hell, the last 25 years or so, but that’s a discussion for another time – was quite angering for a military veteran. The actions by the SCROTUS, Orange Foolius, and his ill-advised and quite ignorant commentary on the National Football League and, in particular, players who protest the indignities foisted on minorities by law enforcement personnel, last Thursday night lit a firestorm with people. In those comments in front of a group of knuckle-dragging Neanderthals in Alabama, the buffoon in chief whined about how football wasn’t a “real game” anymore because of the concern over head injuries that the players might suffer (let’s just forget the factor of the debilitating effects of CTE). Then he launched off into a topic that, until he brought it back, had pretty much died out.

“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners,” Orange Foolius blubbered to the slobbering masses, “when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch (and it wouldn’t surprise me if he wanted to go off on the tangent the Pennsylvania fire chief went on in describing Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin) off the field right now. Out! He’s fired. He’s fired!’”

Of course, the diatribe was in response to quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s 2016 season-long protest of police brutality and minority oppression by kneeling on the sidelines during the National Anthem. Don’t let the mere fact get in the way that it has since cost Kaepernick his position with the San Francisco 49ers, his team at the time, or the blackballing that has resulted from the other GMs in the league from his peaceful protest. In fact, other than a handful of players in the NFL (Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman Michael Bennett most notably, who had a run-in with Las Vegas police that ended in a rather acrimonious situation), Kaepernick’s attempts to bring attention to the continued travesty that occurs far too often had pretty much been brushed under the rug.

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That was until the Tangerine Fool’s hacking of red meat to feed to a bunch of rubes.

After Herr Twitler finished his hissy fit, the entirety of the NFL spoke up as one voice. Instead of a couple of players, more than 250 took a knee. Roger Goodell, the Commissioner of the NFL, issued a blistering renouncement of Orange Foolius’ statements and entire teams, who would rather piss on the ground that Goodell stands on than join with him, linked together in a show of solidarity against the stupidity of the jackass in chief and him slobbering minions. This included the Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft (both donated to the presidential cause of the SCROTUS…wonder if they’re regretting that now).

These protests will continue probably for the remainder of the season, especially since this imbecile and his lobotomy-ravaged sycophants have tried to steal the concept of the protest, trying to make it about the “flag” and “the Anthem” and “the troops” instead of what it was about…the injustices facing minorities in this country, especially at the hands of law enforcement personnel. Be on the lookout for similar protests to begin in the National Basketball Association also.

Kaepernick’s protest was never about the military, nor the flag, nor even the Anthem. So why did he choose his moment last year to make his stand? Because every other means of protest had been taken from the people. Remember those idiots who said they would drive their vehicles into marchers in the street (they thought it was a great idea until a Nazi decided to do it and GOP legislators STILL want to reduce liability for drivers)? So, people don’t like marchers. Well, what about occupying an area and sitting or kneeling? Nope, that offends people too, unless you’re white, armed to the teeth and screaming about how “the gubment” is stealing your land…then you get acquitted. Kaepernick chose the least offensive way to go about making his protest (and, for those of you who say, ‘Why don’t he use his money to make his voice heard’…he has, to the tune of $1 million at the minimum) and it is one that the military men and women of this country should support wholeheartedly.

The military – the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and National Guard – is 37% minority. That the dotard in the White House chose to go after minority football and basketball players (yes, we didn’t even touch on the Steph Curry and Golden State Warriors “visit” to the White House, but I’ve got to leave you some legwork to learning) is a damning sign when he doesn’t call out white supremacists, racists, or religious zealots (his very own “spiritual advisor,” the “Reverend” Robert Jeffress of the First Baptist Church of Dallas, suggested that football players should be thankful that nobody has “shot them in the head”) for their bullshit.

Beyond the racial factor, the military and its fighting men and women do not defend a flag. Those airmen and women, soldiers, sailors, and Marines do not defend a ditty written by a racist as he stood passively by in a boat, scribbling his screed, while watching those said defenders of the country die at the hands of British ships bombing the hell out of Fort McHenry during the War of 1812. The men and women of the Armed Forces – be they active duty or reservist – defend the people of a country, ALL people, whether they are white, black, brown, red or polka-dotted.

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They defend the Constitution, the law of the land, and ALL that the document entails. They defend the Bill of Rights and the 27 Amendments that have been made to the Constitution over the past 240 years. That means, when it comes to the question of the “methods of protest” employed by one group or another, they stand for it, even if they don’t agree with it. As a Marine veteran, I support the right of protest. It is one of the many rights that citizens are granted and that I defended for them and for this country. Freedom of speech is arguably (I personally think there’s not an argument) one of the greatest rights we have, the ability to speak out against the government, its politicians, and its institutions. And yes, sometimes that freedom of speech can be used in areas that make you uncomfortable or you dislike. Allowing such speech is the true test of the freedom.

I recall when I was growing up in Illinois there was a small town near Chicago called Skokie, a predominantly Jewish and Polish enclave. There was a band of Illinois Nazis (you wonder where that line “I hate Illinois Nazis” in The Blues Brothers comes from?) that petitioned for the right to march through the villa. After several legal attempts to stop the march were denied – on the RIGHT OF FREEDOM OF SPEECH – the Illinois Nazis marched and people peacefully protested it. Such raconteurs as Ann Coulter and Milo Yiannopoulos also have that same right to be heard; so does comedian Bill Maher, who sometimes takes angles on freedom that people don’t agree with.

Freedom of speech is exactly that…you have the freedom to express your ideas. Now, there is also that right to PEACEFULLY protest on the other side and there are also the consequences of the freedom of speech. If you are willing to accept the consequences of what your freedom of speech might entail – as Colin Kaepernick has been – then your freedom to do it is guaranteed.

The National Anthem is just a song. No military person is defending a song. Likewise, the same could be said about the flag. It is presented as a symbol of the country, not something to be worshipped on the altar of a god. If you are disturbed by someone who is making a peaceful protest by simply kneeling on the ground but you accept something like this…

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Then you are the one with a problem. And if you accept that – or accept a supposed leader in the SCROTUS who thinks that white Nazis are “good people” while calling minority athletes “sons of bitches” – then we can see where the problems in this country lie. And it goes beyond someone kneeling in silence to protest.

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What to Expect from The Resident’s Speech Tonight

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Since the changeover in the office of the President, there was no State of the Union speech scheduled for this year. Usually, however, the incoming President is invited to address a joint session of Congress soon after taking office to offer to the legislative branch their ideas for the upcoming year – an unofficial SOTU, so to speak. This has been a common occurrence in the past couple of newly elected presidents.

President George W. Bush, after a brutal contest with then-Vice President Al Gore and the resulting legal entanglements that ensued afterwards, looked to display to the States of America that he was ready to work with people and get beyond the polarization of the political parties in his address in 2001 (whether he would have done that or not became immaterial following 9/11 – Dubya kicked the military war machine into overdrive after that and said “fuck the Kumbaya shit”). President Barack Obama, facing the near-collapse of the worldwide economic system, calmly explained to the people in his 2009 address that the country would rebound from the brink of another Great Depression and he was proven correct – but not so correct that the GOP would work with him to help in pursuing those goals. So, the question becomes what can we expect out of The Resident tonight?

If his conduct over the past three months – the two since the election and the one since he plopped his fat ass in the chair in the White House – is any indication, he isn’t going to do a goddamn thing. Since being voted in by a MINORITY of the people in this country, he’s done literally nothing except sign meaningless Executive Orders that are about as effective as the toilet paper they’re written on. How meaningless? How about “The Wall,” where there has been little more than “direction” given to build it. The Border Act of 2007, and the 700 miles of fencing allotted at that time, has been completed by Obama no less; to build any more will require passing it through Congress. Deregulating coal? All that has done is made conditions worse for the workers and the citizens downstream from coal plants that can now dump their toxic sludge in the rivers.

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The immigration ban? Besides the laughable actions of the Confederacy of Dunces trying to put that one over pretty every single government organization that would oversee implementing it, the Judicial branch of government hammered The Resident like a copper-headed nail in ruling the ban unconstitutional (and expect the same again for his second run as he hasn’t demonstrated any threat). He’s seen two prospective Secretaries of the armed forces (Phillip Bilden for the Navy, Vincent Viola for the Army) withdraw, his choice for Labor secretary Andrew Puzder also withdrawing (because The Resident’s OWN PARTY had problems with him), had to force his choice for chief national security advisor, Michael Flynn, to resign (rather than fire him) over his interactions with Russian government officials and BARELY got through his choices for Education Secretary (who just recently commented that historically black colleges and universities were a “great example of school choice”), Attorney General (despite being rejected for a federal judgeship in the 1980s because he was a racist) and head of the Treasury (despite accepting every bailout offered following the crash of 2008 for Goldman Sachs, the very institution that The Resident lied about “putting out of business” if he were elected during the campaign).

Nearly every day since his pitiful inauguration – with its miniscule crowd, a 16-year old with a transgender sister who sang the National Anthem only to get slapped in the face by reality when “her hero” dropped rights for LGBTQ peoples like a homophobe, and balls that copied cakes from the Obama Inauguration – there has been some bullshit flow from The Resident. If it isn’t his constant insistence that he would have won the popular vote if it weren’t for “illegal voters” (absolutely no evidence has been shown for this), that Obama is “behind” the protestors at GOP Congressional members in their home districts (shown to be false as people show their voter IDs) or his continued Tweetstorms every time something twists his panties into a wad (Saturday Night Live, Arnold Schwarzenegger), then it is his Dunces stepping to the fore (Kellyanne ConJob’s “alternative facts” and “full endorsement” of Flynn mere hours before his dismissal, Sean “Spicey” Spicer’s examination of underlings phones to make sure they weren’t “leaking” information, Stephen Miller’s one-time Neo-Nazi display on the Sunday morning talkers, etc.) to take their turn in the barrel.

Another demonstration of ignorance by The Resident has been in “dismantling” ObamaCare. Besides the factor that NO ONE in the GOP can come up with a plan that does what ObamaCare does for cheaper – or protects as many people as the current plan does – in the previous eight years, you then have The Resident commenting that “nobody knew that health care could be so complicated.” After they stopped rolling on the floor in laughter, pretty much anyone involved in government since Richard Nixon could have informed this idiot that it wasn’t as quick as a sweep of a pen.

Then there’s his “love” of the military. Since he loves them so much, he sent an assault team into Yemen – utilizing intel that was well over a month old – which led to the death of a SEAL, William Owens, and many civilian casualties. His father, Bill Owens, has demanded an investigation into the clusterfuck that led to his son’s death and the ineptitude of The Resident, who ordered the action. Add in removing the protection that military members had for their spouses should they be undocumented immigrants and he’s demonstrating his love wholeheartedly.

The Resident has also shown the inability to call out situations that HE created and no one else. The murder of one Indian man and wounding of a second in Kansas by a white StormTrumper barely brought a guffaw out of The Resident, especially after the perpetrator allegedly said, “Get out of my country,” as he shot them down. Several Jewish cemeteries have been desecrated, once again due to the racial animosity promoted by The Resident, with nary a note of care but money raised by Muslims to restore the headstones demonstrating compassion. A white StormTrumper in Canada goes on a shooting rampage in a mosque – crickets. But let a Muslim with a knife try to attack in Paris and The Resident is all over it, stating it is “radical Islamic terrorism,” even though his third choice for the job (his second, General Robert Harward, turned down the job he described as a “shit sandwich”), General H. R. McMaster, has said this is “not helpful.”

Finally, there’s the continued Chinese Water Torture that has become the Russian situation and their involvement in the 2016 election for The Resident and the ongoing battle with the press. Despite plenty of evidence otherwise, The Resident – who also doesn’t like intelligence briefings that don’t support his mindset – has steadfastly remained devoted to his BFB Vladimir Putin. And as the press closes in on more evidence that there was involvement by The Resident’s staff with Russian intelligence agents, he and his subordinates attempt to silence the press by shutting them off from access. Attempts to silence the press will only further embolden them, much like those who oppose this shitstain.

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So now we are on the precipice of The Resident’s address to Congress and the country. How difficult would it be for him to show some humility, some common intelligence and sense, and come out with an opening statement of “I haven’t done the job correctly…yet. I am not going to complete all I said I would do, but I am going to ensure that EVERYONE in the country has the protection of all governmental agencies and that we are all safe in our homeland.” The answer is it would be extremely difficult for this narcissistic, xenophobic bastard to be able to show an ounce of humility even once.

Expect this evening to be a continuation of the bullshit rallies (that are remarkably familiar to a time in our recent past) that The Resident has continued to hold, even though he won the 2016 election. Expect more about how well the administration is doing – despite every iota of evidence that shows it is a burning tire fire of immense proportions – and that he’s “going to bring jobs back” that have been disappearing for 40 years and won’t ever come back or he’s going to “keep out the bad dudes” and “attack ISIS” because he has “a secret plan” (yeah, remember that one?). And expect the sycophants – those in the Confederacy of Dunces and those who voted for him that still cling to him like a toddler on a teat, expecting him to provide salvation where none exists – to continue to spout off on social media about how he will “make ‘Merica great again.”

The sad reality is that this evening’s charade in Washington D. C. will be a fucking puppet with the hand of Putin up his ass speaking to a gathering of those who will only tolerate him until it isn’t worth their time to do so anymore. The Resident will spout rhetoric about “rebuilding a military (that doesn’t need rebuilding)” that he so desperately wants to use, like a child playing with Army figures except in this case it is actual lives on the line. He’ll spout about how he’s “helping” by ending ObamaCare, except that people now want it left alone. And he’ll find, once no more XOs can be written, once no one else can be bullied by his charlatan actions on Twitter and he finds out he has to actually come up with ideas to govern by, perhaps he’ll rethink his main henchman Steve Bannon’s intents for the country he “says” he supposedly loves.

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Jade Helm 15 a Conspiracy Theory With No Basis in Fact

When Hollywood puts together a movie or television show, the better ones always have some basis in fact or reality. No matter the genre – horror, suspense, action, romcom, etc. – the closer to reality it is, the more impact it has on the viewing audience. In many cases, it is because it MIGHT have a chance of happening or it is factually feasible to someone or something that makes the thrills, scares or emotional investment viscerally important to people. The same thing can be said books; although some (alongside their acting brethren) do like to be removed to a fantasyland that allows the brain to take a pause, the more realistic a book is in the mind of the reader, the more of an impact it will have.

In many ways – possibly because they are works of fiction created by someone’s mind – the multitude of conspiracy theories that abound in today’s world fall into the same category that Hollywood’s best cinematic, theatric and episodic efforts reside in that they sometimes need just a flake of truth to them to be believable. Without the slimmest of possibilities that it could actually happen, conspiracy theories often die an ignoble death or, at best, find a life in the alternate history genre.

Before we dive into the latest example of the conspiracy theory concept, we have to look at why conspiracy theories abound. What is it about conspiracy theories that draw people in? Why do conspiracy theories continually pop up in society? What should be done if they’re false claims? These are all good questions and we’ll start at the beginning.

The thing about conspiracy theories that draw people in is the desire by humanity to understand their conditions for existence. For humans it is highly desirable to know that the sun comes up in the morning, sets in the evening and it will do the same thing tomorrow. It can be highly desirable to believe that good always vanquishes evil, right triumphs over wrong and all is copacetic with the world when they lay their head on the pillow at night. These desires, if not met, can cause otherwise normal people to concoct an alternate reality that fits into their desired existence.

For example, let’s take a look at one of the greatest conspiracy theories of all-time, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963. People who saw the accused assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, couldn’t believe that such a “small” person could be responsible for taking down the most powerful leader on Earth. To help their minds cope with this, many dredged up scenarios that helped their minds to make sense of the situation:  the Cubans were involved because of the Bay of Pigs fiasco; the Chicago and Miami arms of La Cosa Nostra joined forces with the Central Intelligence Agency to do the deed; the Russians (for being shown up in the Cuban Missile Crisis)…the list goes on. For many, believing that these powerful and mysterious bodies killed the President of the United States made more sense than a single man who was allegedly an awful shooter picking off the President from the window of a building as he drove by in a limousine.

As the world draws closer together, it also becomes much more difficult to explain; this causes an increase in conspiracy theories in society. Whereas 30-40 years ago it would have been unheard of for some of the actions that, for example, the twenty 9/11 terrorists took – training for over two to three years and immersing yourself in a foreign culture for what would eventually be a suicide mission – today those jihadists have the spiritual, emotional and “obligation to duty” wherewithal to pull off these horrendous acts. It would be easier for some to force up a story that the attacks of 14 years ago were the work of a “shadow world government” or even our own political leadership (to push us closer to a military state and allow for those in power to take more of it) rather than to believe a group of people could even get close to the destruction that occurred on 9/11.

Recently one of those “conspiracy theories” came to a close and it gives us an opportunity to look at how we should handle those that promote them when they are proven to be untrue. On Tuesday, the military exercises known as Jade Helm 15 came to a close after eight weeks of operations across the Southwestern United States. Troops from every branch of the U. S. Armed Forces spread across several states, including Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California and Colorado (if I left you out, don’t feel bad), to train in terrain, temperatures and combat situations that they would be facing in the Middle East. This training is much like what U. S. Marines do with their amphibious landings off the coast of North Carolina or Virginia or the U. S. Navy or Air Force does with bombing runs or aerial combat in the deserts of Death Valley or Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.

This time, however, a preconceived “conspiracy theory” was developed, by which jackass nobody knows. The “conspiracy theory” promoted by these brain-dead individuals was that the federal government, under the auspices of the Muslim king Barack Obama, was going to take over Texas and put it under government martial law. To achieve this goal, the training exercise “Jade Helm” was the cover to allow armed troops to move freely across the Southwest, picking up “true patriots” and putting them into “internment camps.” These “internment camps” were linked by underground tunnels between closed Wal-Mart stores, which the Walton Family (a dastardly part of the conspiracy due to their complicit involvement in the New World Order) had donated to the government for this exact purpose. Once martial law was in place, King Barack would “eliminate” any opposition through mass executions or reeducation programs.

Hopefully you were able to read through that mass of crazy…

The first inklings of this story worthy of Hollywood bubbled up in meetings of the County Commissioners of Bastrop, TX, where “concerned citizens” forced their way to the front of the meetings demanding answers from their elected officials. Were they a part of the conspiracy to enslave their constituents? Were they letting the feds “take over?” Even after bringing in a highly decorated Army officer to explain the situation, people still believed the “conspiracy theory” rather than the logical explanations provided by some in government and the military men who met with them.

The story took on a life of its own when other idiots began to pump it ad nauseam. In the media, conspiracy wacko Alan Jones was the major driver of the short bus, pushing the gruel of misinformation to the point where there was no tinfoil left in the H-E-B’s located around the Lone Star State. Then former actor Chuck Norris – yes, Walker, Texas Ranger himself – fanned the ignorance flames by saying that the exercises could be related to an attack by the Islamic terrorist group ISIS. Most special about Norris is that, to mainstream media, he tried to say he had been misquoted, but to other members of the Insanity Posse he repeated his beliefs.

While these two men made some extremely idiotic statements regarding the federal government and our U. S. troops and their exercises, they have to be cut a little slack. Both are preening celebrity members of society, not news correspondents, reporters or respected anchors that are expected to be held to a high standard (Brian Williams, anybody?). While both Jones and Norris have sizeable followings, they often have to carve up some red meat for them to nosh on to keep them around, listening and contributing millions to their bank accounts for bullshit “survival” items or trying to maintain their relevance that disappeared 25 years ago.

The problem comes when the adults in the room – the elected officials who run the governments – fail to meet their responsibilities. First on the list is now-Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who ordered the Texas Guard (not the Texas National Guard, a branch of the U. S. Armed Forces, but a special militia under the auspices of the Governor of the state) to “monitor the Jade Helm exercises.” Eventually outrage – including the statement “Why are you pandering to idiots?” uttered to his face – forced Abbott to reexamine his stance and the Texas Guard didn’t head out into the field.

Not one but THREE members of our current Presidential campaign also bought into the conspiracy. Former Texas Governor Rick Perry stated that Obama was going to allow IS terrorists into the U. S. during the exercises to allow for more upheaval, being sure to express that nothing like this would happen under “President” Perry’s watch (he dropped out last week, ending that dream for the second time in four years). Kentucky Senator Rand Paul and Texas Senator Ted Cruz both opined on the subject, with Cruz saying he thought that the exercises weren’t nefarious but that the President wasn’t “trustworthy” and could pull something along the invasion line and Paul saying he “wasn’t sure” what was going on with the exercises. Finally, another member of Congress, current Texas Representative Louie Gomert, said the exercises were meant to be the vehicle for Obama to target “right wing conservatives” by declaring certain states “enemies” of his administration.

You can give hucksters and entertainers such as Jones and Norris leeway, but you cannot give sitting elected officials, members of Congress or people who wish to be the leader of this nation carte blanche to say whatever they want and inspire the imbecilic minds of some people to take action (there were three men arrested in North Carolina who were looking to stop the “Jade Helm” exercises by attacking a military base in the state and, in Mississippi, don’t forget about the disturbed man who drove by bases firing a rifle at them). At the minimum, these elected officials should be forced to apologize to the elected officials that they’ve slandered with their words. In particular, they need to apologize to those troops that they supposedly love so much that they thought they would take over their state. At the maximum – and I am looking at Abbott, Paul, Cruz and Gomert here – they should be officially sanctioned by their appropriate legislative bodies (but that isn’t going to happen because their party controls both houses). All should look in a fucking mirror and wonder how far that they’ve sunk that they would fall for what was an extremely easy “conspiracy theory” to decipher rather than fall into.

Part of intelligent dialogue – whether in debate or other discussion about particular subjects – is being able to sift the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. In this case, it means garnering the useful kernels of information (military exercises are necessary for a well-prepared armed forces, the government has to have some place to train, etc.) from the brainless meanderings of those that are the product of a lobotomy class. Once that is done, then a lucid conclusion can be reached. The “Jade Helm” exercises were a perfect example of a segment of society that has been left to run amok and, rather than use rational thought and reason to figure out what is happening, latch onto something that only serves to exacerbate their fears and not aid in any way reaching a logical conclusion.

Will the advent of “conspiracy theories” go away? Hell, no! There are those out there that see the boogeyman behind every tree, under every doorstep and in the halls of governments around the world. There is also no way to alleviate these unfortunate individuals pain, either; it just has to rot them from the inside until maintaining the many “conspiracy theories” leave them but a former shell of themselves rather than a functioning member of society.