Remember Justin Carter? Last I checked, he was being tried for making a joke on Facebook, because of the culture of fear and speech monitoring created by the irresponsible hysteria over guns and terrorism. He faces prison time. That this is a freedom-suffocating societal illness that threatens any and all of us is chronicled in Ken White account, and accompanying commentary, on the astonishing mistreatment of Bergen Community College Professor Francis Schmidt by the school, which was sent into a frenzy of terror because he posted to Google+ “a cute picture of his young daughter wearing a Game of Thrones t-shirt in a yoga pose next to a cat.” Inside Higher Ed reports what happened next: Continue reading
Tag Archives: Fear-mongering
The Persecution Of Justin Carter And The Consequences Of Fear-Mongering: If This Doesn’t Make You Angry, Something’s The Matter With You
Here I was, naively thinking that the threatened jailing of a student for resisting a teacher’s efforts to make him remove his T-shirt with the image of a rifle on it was the most shocking proof of how imperiled free thought and expression are in today’s fearful, dim-witted and child abuse-rationalizing America. Then this jaw-dropping story came across my screen, and I realized that the situation is far worse than I imagined or could imagine—and I have a pretty good imagination.
Now the question is, I think, this: what are we going to do about it?
Nineteen-year-old Justin Carter has been in prison, since March. You will not believe why, or perhaps, being both paranoid and right, you will. A Facebook friend and video game pal described him in an exchenge as “crazy” and “messed up in the head,” and Carter replied, with sarcasm detectible by anyone who isn’t an SS officer. “Oh yeah, I’m real messed up in the head, I’m going to go shoot up a school full of kids and eat their still, beating hearts. lol. jk.” A Canadian busybody read the exchange, and decided to report Justin to the Austin police, who then arrested him–he was 18 at the time—searched his family’s house, and charged him with making a “terroristic threat.” Continue reading
You see, there really are consequences to our political leaders’ irresponsible fear-mongering. People still tend to believe and trust our leaders, the fools, and when prominent ones like President Obama and Diane Feinstein, aided and abetted by hysterical media voices like Piers Morgan and blathering celebrities like Jim Carrey, exploit the deaths of small children in a tragic school shooting to use fear rather than reason to pass additional gun regulations, it isn’t surprising that members of the public get frightened. This is supposed to cause them to push their representatives for gun measures that, in truth, have little to do with preventing school shootings, but it also causes them to act irrationally. Reckless conduct and cynical legislative strategies have consequences.
At Pine Eagle Charter School in tiny (population 288) Halfway, Oregon, administrators thought the risk of another Adam Lanza shooting up their small school was so serious that it justified staging an unannounced massacre drill. Two masked men wearing hoodies and wielding handguns burst into a meeting room full of teachers and opened fire, with blanks. Not that the terrified teachers knew that, until it was clear to them that they had been shot and weren’t dead. Continue reading
Further proving my conviction that there is no ethical difference between the two political parties at all (they are both habitually dishonest, corrupt, incompetent, hypocritical and Machiavellian), the Republicans opposing immigration reform are in the process of proving they can play the Newtown game too, only more shamelessly. This is why neither party can ever maintain the moral high ground in any issue, ever. While one party is using unethical arguments and tactics, it is just a matter of time before the other party, despite all its protests when it is the target of them, will employ exactly the same measures—and argue that it’s not, of course.
The Newtown game, if you didn’t get the reference, is when apolitical party cynically seizes on a human tragedy and draws a specious and tendentious connection between it and a desired policy initiative. Gun control was never about stopping elementary school massacres, since what occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary was unprecedented, but suddenly the old, old debates about semi-automatic weapons and background checks were cynically recast as test of whether lawmakers cared about kids or not. Which is more important, an archaic Bill of Rights provision about militias, or saving toddlers from being mowed down in cold blood? Why, if only one child is saved, isn’t it worth limiting our right to arm ourselves? Have you no heart? Gun supporters, Republicans, conservatives and fair minded citizens capable of thought were properly offended at these tactics, while, naturally, the integrity-free mainstream media adopted the same “save the children” mantra.
None of this stopped the Republicans who continue to oppose unavoidable measures necessary to clean up the mess left by decades of bi-partisan negligence regarding illegal immigration from using the latest high-profile tragedy—the Boston Marathon bombing—as a tool to derail the push for immigration reform. Continue reading
Washington Post editorial writer Ruth Marcus gave us a jaw-droppingly arrogant and willfully obtuse lament yesterday. She is in despair. Why would such a sensible, unthreatening gun control measure as the Manchin-Toomey background check amendment fail to pass the Senate? Poor Ruth just can’t understand it. The Senators voting against the bill were so “impervious to logic.” It just didn’t make sense!
What is ruefully amusing and telling about Marcus’s “how dare anyone disagree with us?” rant is that her essay answers its own question. It is stuffed full of the elements that completely justify Senators or anyone who respects gun-ownership, the Second Amendment and guns opposing any proposals at all that come out of the post-Sandy Hook exploitation campaign by Marcus and her political compadres. It all comes down to trust, Ruth, and you are one of those who is untrustworthy on the topic of guns. Your column proves it, just as President Obama’s petulant outburst of contempt against gun rights absolutists proves his untrustworthiness. Continue reading
“The notion that two months or three months after something as horrific as what happened in Newtown happens and we’ve moved on to other things? That’s not who we are. That’s not who we are. And I want to make sure every American is listening today…Shame on us if we’ve forgotten. I haven’t forgotten those kids. Shame on us if we’ve forgotten.”
—-President Obama, at a White House event designed to re-energize the push for stricter gun control laws.
Shame on the President…for not only making a facile, lowest-common-denominator appeal for gun control regulations, but for implying that policy should be made in the heat of emotional rather than after rational debate and analysis, looking at all sides of an issue, rather than just the most sensational.
Shame on the President…for insulting principled opponents of the Democrat’s irresponsible, hysterical and cynical effort to portray the complex issue of fire arms regulation as a matter of “saving the children” by accusing them of forgetting the horrendous massacre of toddlers at Newtown.
Shame on the President…for dishonestly suggesting that the measures under consideration, good and bad, would have necessarily done anything to prevent the Sandy Hook rampage by a deranged killer. If it would not, then why is the date of the event, whether it was 10, 100, or 1000 days ago, relevant to anything? Investigators found that Adam Lanza had a 28 inch Samurai sword in his arsenal. How many children might he have killed in the same amount of time with that, rather than his assault rifle? Watch “Kill Bill, Part I” and get back to me. Continue reading
“Speaking of global warming…which has now been proven to be a hoax”…”
—-Rush Limbaugh, riffing today on his radio show regarding the evils of liberals from Obama to Bloomberg.
This an outright ethics foul, even if Rush believes it. If he doesn’t believe it, it’s a lie. If he does believe it, it is still a reckless, incompetent and irresponsible thing to say to millions of listeners who trust him to tell them the truth.
Global warming, or climate change, is not a hoax. Its exact extent may not be known, or as conclusively known as some scientists and commentators claim. It may be difficult to measure, and the historical data it is being measured against may be flawed. Its researchers may have biases, and have strayed too far over the line into advocacy. They may also have been too willing to stifle dissenting voices in the scientific community. How serious global warming will be, when its effects will be fully felt and how long it will last are all matters of projection and speculation, subject to error. Projections have been, and will continue to be, unreliable, and arguably, too unreliable to justify costly public policy measures. Remedies are speculative, and cost-benefit ratios are in doubt.
It is also true that many of the most vocal and visible supporters of the most dire projections by climate change researchers, as well as the most vociferous attacker of climate change skeptics, literally don’t know what they are talking about. Their fervor is driven by ideology and faith rather than actual expertise and scholarship, and anything they say on the subject should be given no weight whatsoever. This groups includes journalists, columnists, bloggers, celebrities, academics not in the sciences, public officials and leaders, including, depressingly, Barack Obama, whose State of the Union speech comments on climate change were outrageous and irresponsible: Continue reading