Monday, December 10, 2007

Armed Church Security Guard shoots crazy dude

So you may or may not have heard about two shootings in Churches in the US on Sunday- one of which occurred in a 'super church' which has a congregation of 10,000 people!!!

Anyways, what really struck me and shocked me about this story was that one of these crazy shooty guys was shot dead by a church security guard!!

I know that in it's telling, it is clear just WHY you might need an armed security guard in a church- but what the fuck?! Was that actually on the agenda when that decision was made, to arm the security guards with deadly weapons, in a place supposedly of peace and understanding and love?

Speaking as someone who lives in an anti-gun country, where armed police are shocking and scary to see in the street, and for whom going through US customs causes sweats cause of all the guns around, I know I am not ever going to 'get' this. But how can people pray and all that, when in the same room as guys with weapons? That are solely designed for killing people? How??

I get that with 10,000 people you would need marshalls or security, to usher people about and stop panicking crowds and all, but to arm them with actual GUNS seems so horribly suspicious of those fellow christian believers and of all humankind who might pass through the doors. why not tasers, or batons, if anything?? Because though I may not be all up on my bible studies, (ie, not even slightly religious) I was pretty sure the bible is kind of big on not killing people and forgiveness and peace. Isn't it pro-life?

Actually, don't even get me started on the whole pro-life/pro-gun thing.... i mean.. ok, no, I have to get back to work and that will take ages and make me fume all day.

About 10 years ago a crazy guy ran into a UK church on a Sunday, naked, with a samurai sword and killed a few people with it. This was an isolated incident and did not cause churches across the country to install metal detectors and armed security priests.

I just don't get it. I do not get this. I do not understand.

43 comments:

Bikenik said...

First you have to ask why have a church of 10,000? Where is the fellowship in that? With that many 'strangers' in the crowd there is a need for security - and in the States
security is cameras, guards and guns.

Religion is big business.

Nathan said...

A-(depending on part of the states one is in) A lot of people grow up with guns in their home, whether for hunting or their fathers are paranoid freaks. In fact guns make some people feel more secure when in the hands of someone they presume to be a competent professional instead of nervous.

B- Only the second half of the bible is peaceful. The first half discusses an angry god and genocide and other horrible things people really shouldn't teach to children unless they want the kids to grow up and be angry gun wielding psychopaths.

C- It seems like there's a church shooting about every 2 years here. So from a security standpoint it does make sense to have security. As for having faith in god to protect them...

Anonymous said...

Megachurches are about an inch away from setting up electronic money changers anyway (John 2:12-25).

The problem of religious hypocrisy is as old as civilization and doesn't seem to be going anywhere. I can try to give some really brief summaries of my opinions on the matter.

Nothing creates more cognitive dissonance than coming across a fellow human being who seems to be made of the same stuff as you but who has a view of things that you just can't understand. Religious and political matters always create ideological rifts, and these are hard to tolerate. People want to use political structures to flatten them. What this means is that religion gets intermeshed with political and cultural matters. And it makes no difference, as far as this goes, what flavor of religion or irreligion a culture adopts, a political power is going to bastardize it to its advantage. The Inquisition, the Caste System, the Soviets' bastardization of Marxist philosophy....

Secondly, the great temptation in religion is to think that being "religious" automatically makes you "good." Anyone who falls into this mindset deeply enough can do anything in the name of God, because by virtue of being in the name of God, it's good.

I spent seven months in a Catholic seminary studying to become a priest. It didn't quite take, but I'm still "really religious" as some of my friends put it. Anyway, I'd like to add a couple things. Supposing everything I believe in is right... God always, always, ALWAYS deals most harshly with those inside the "household of faith" who don't live up to their vocations than those outside it. Both the Old Testament and the Gospels are unequivocal on this issue: religion in itself doesn't protect you from anything, it increases the demands upon you. Also, I appreciate your sensitivity and tenderness and sincerity on this issue and if it's any consolation I promise you that these things bother me more than you because I believe in the realities they conceal.

tejayce said...

actually the bible is only about peace and love for everyone who believes and obeys(the religion). in a sense of "it doesnt matter if you rape and kill people, as long as you are a christian .. we will forgive you".
its group think: we are good - everyone else is evil(and we have to kill them). the bible is a very very old book, a lot of the things it promotes/demands are considered "bad" nowadays.

the religion itself has changed over time of course, but the bible hasnt much. so what you talk about is modern christianity and not the bible.


besides that .. i aint got nothin to say .. cause "i just dont get it" too. :(

Anonymous said...

Papes,

I think I speak for most when I say that we all love you over here--for any one of many different reasons, and this post doesn't change that, but talking about the impropriety of the Right to Bear Arms in the U.S. when you're British is just not a good idea, and points out why maybe the British school system should spend a lot more time teaching you guys about the American Revolution.

Both the issue of bearing arms, and believe it or not, the abortion issue as well, at their roots, grow out of British tyranny and require a complete history lesson in the American Revolution, American Jurisprudence, Federalism, Representative Democracy, and the relations between our two countries.

As you know, of course, the Founding Fathers of the United States were all English revolutionaries--Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Penn, Franklin, Revere, Hancock, to name a few. Their families, including mine, came here from England to escape what we viewed as governmental tyranny and religious persecution.

RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS

If you study all of the Amendments to the United States Constitution (Bill of Rights--the First 10, in particular), these grant to the American people rights that cannot be taken away by government through any form of legislation, and are a direct response to British Rule and Occupation. So, for instance, one of those, and probably the most important, is the "Right To Bear Arms" guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. It is, in part, largely related to the Third Amendment, which guarantees Americans that they do not have to provide quarters to soldiers. Many of the British soldiers (with guns) occupied the homes of Americans during the Revolutionary War. They also tried to partake in the wives and daughters of Americans when they bursted into their homes. James Madison (later President Madison) and others, in direct response to the tyranny and sheer madness, decided to expressly grant Americans the right to bear arms to protect their homes and family. As noted, it was so important, that it was the Second Amendment to the Constitution. Additionally, even today, the United States is largely a rural country, our big cities notwithstanding. Of course, in years past, it was even more rural--think about the Wild West and how California only became a State in 1850. Thus, the U.S. had to be settled and is still a very young country in the context of World History. That meant, among other things, fights with Native Americans, the need to hunt for food, etc. Thus, gun ownership was and remains as much a part of American culture, for protection and hunting, as nearly anything. As a young country, we also have far more crime than in England--far, far, far more crime. Home invasions are not that uncommon in many places throughout the United States. And, most Americans believe that if you enter their house illegally, and pose a threat to their families, you should be prepared to get blasted.

In sum, then, the protection of house and home, and hunting, is so rooted in American culture, that when most Americans hear people talking about disarming them, they go crazy with rage and anger. Our Supreme Court has ruled that the right can be restricted only when the government has a compelling State interest--for instance, when someone has engaged in criminal conduct with a firearm.

I don't own a gun, and most Americans don't. But, that's only because I live in an area where the likelihood of me needing one is slim to none. Plus, I like animals and don't hunt. However, I would never be so presumptuous to assume that everyone else shares my security or lifestyle--because most don't. The prevailing thought in America, without even referencing the historical context as I have, is that if you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have them. If my life, or government, should change for the worse, and I end up needing a gun, I want to be free to get one.

ABORTION

This is the most over-hyped and overrated issue in American politics. Most people couldn't care less if a woman took her womb out and swung it in the air. Most Americans have what are called Libertarian values, even if they don't know it. That basically means that they want their persons, property, and money, left alone--they want to work, save their money, and live their lives, with as little interference (i.e., taxation) from government as possible. (Digression: Think about your recent dentist experience. Most Americans don't want national health insurance of any sort. We're smart enough to know that huge bureaucratic systems funded by insane taxation are garbage and don't work. Competitive medical care, and private insurance, results in the best medical care. That's why most people come here when they are really ill. And, don't for one minute let anyone lead you to believe that if you're poor, you won't be treated in the U.S. Our Emergency Hospital Rooms are filled with people everyday who have no money. Health care for the poor is completely subsidized through what's called Medicare and otherwise by so-called "Charity Care").

But, more specifically, what many Americans oppose is not abortion, per se, but the violence that a certain Supreme Court decision did to our Constitution. That decision was called Roe v. Wade, where a slim majority of the Supreme Court decided that they would just write in this phony right to abortion into the Constitution where it hadn't existed in 200 years. In fact, abortion was outlawed for 200 years in 36 of the 50 States.

This gets back to the whole British rule thing. Our Founding Fathers, in response to central, big government tyranny, believed that power should rest with the people, and that the Constitution should only protect basic, fundamental rights that are endemic to our culture. All other issues, especially controversial issues (including abortion and anything else), were deemed to be ones that should be left to the people of the individual States. So, for instance, if you want to live in a State where the people, through their elected representatives, have decided to permit abortion, then our Founding Fathers would have said: "Fine, go move there." On the other hand, if you're one of those people who consider abortion to be anathema to your values, and no more than murder, than you should be permitted to live in a State with people who share your values. The Founding Fathers never wanted us to be a monolith. That would be akin to tyranny by majority, which is precisely what they fought the entire Revolution over.

It's a beautiful system of government--all rights not guaranteed by the Constitution are left to the people. And, the Constitution provides that if 3/4 of the States believe that it should be expanded, to provide greater protections, than let it be so. The Amendment process, therefore, was used to abolish slavery, provide for women's suffrage, and many other important things. So, what pisses people off most about the abortion issue is not abortion itself, but how the proponents of it did something ugly to force it down peoples' throats and bypass the Amendment process from which every other important American right had to be extended. A few judges with political motives, put it above all other Amendments (freedom of speech, religion, assembly, right to arms, right against unreasonable searches and seizures, right to life and liberty, right against self-incrimination, right to a fair trial, right against cruel and unusual punishment, right to not be a slave, right to vote) by just writing it out of wholecloth into the Constitution.

So, in sum, it's not abortion that people oppose so much (although some do), it's that abortion was placed above the Constitution itself, and every other fundamental American right. In other words, it was a dirty end run on our entire system of government.

Schools out, Papes.


Dave

WildbillthePirate said...

Who would Jesus Shoot?

Anonymous said...

Dave.

A British persons got every right to comment on the state of gun control in the US. particularly one under 200 years old ;)

After all many Americans talk about the Irish issue here without fully understanding it.

Infact you should just judge fellow humans on the basis they are human not what nationality they are.

Spare the lecture.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous,

When I start talking about the IRA when it has no impact on me, you can tell me how I should feel about my country, and the people in my family who died to serve it.

The entire American Revolution centered on the right to bear arms.

Dave

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Dave,

Please spare the world the lecture.

You do have an interesting point with respect to gun control, though. I especially liked your statement:

"If my life ... should change for the worse, and I end up needing a gun, I want to be free to get one."

There is quite some latitude in this statement.

If your significant other were to step out, you could always get a gun.

If your boss didn't pay you enough, you could always get a gun.

If you were not to like my opinion, you could always get a gun.

Hey, Mr. Dave, here's is an idea. Cut the jingoistic lecturing and get a grip.

Mr. Ejumacated in Amurikun Sckoolz

P.S. I hope none of your relatives died in any of the USA's illegal wars - like the recent one in Iraq.

If they did, you come off as a German claiming pride that one of his relatives died in the SS defending the Fatherland.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous,

First of all, as for "Ejumacated in Amurikun Sckoolz", do you mean like Princeton, Wharton, and Stanford Law School? Do you mean those little institutions? I don't know, what about you? Where were you edjumicated?

Lecture? When someone says they don't understand something, and you explain it because it's yours to explain, how's that a lecture. That's rhetorical, of course.

My point is that anyone (especially Paperlilies for me) can talk about whatever they want, but no one should be surprised if someone who knows about it intimately explains why something is so. That's especially the case when it relates to your own country's how and why.

Now, when the gravamen of your argument is playing the "Nazi Card", you immediately lose that argument. This isn't high school or college, son. You especially lose the argument when the person you use it against is a direct descendent of those who were awarded the Bronze Star for bravery after saving thousands of German Jews from slaughter, rape, etc. while Europe was curled up in the fetal position crying for help like a little bitch. Far be it from me, however, to prevent a fragile ego from grabbing a crutch.

"Life changing for the worse" only means having your wife "stepping out on you", to use your words, when you view the world through a very strange, and limited prism. If you were a mental case, or had no Pimp Hand (as I suspect may be among your collection of problems) and you wanted to harm your wife, why would you need a gun? Well, maybe you would.

In any case, to most, in America, it means living in Compton, or Detroit, or Harlem, or Camden, or Watts, or North Philadelphia, where home invasions often occur. You know, that thing that those of you tools outside of America think is so cool and hardcore in America--poverty, crime, disease, lawlessness. Or, more importantly, if your government decides to burst down your door, like the Nazis, or specifically, English soldiers (who were the FF's own brothers) and who imposed Rule, Occupation, taxation without representation, and then held guns to the heads of those same brothers while raping their wives and daughters. If you have no problem with that, I'd suggest that you're more than a little weird. Call us Monsters, but Americans really didn't like that much. Toward that end, were the Founding Fathers, Nazis, for defending themselves and their families, and giving their fellow citizens the right to bear arms? You might want to try reading some of Madison's Federalist Papers to bring yourself up to speed.

Americans don't like being "control[led]". I see that you have no problem with the word "control" flowing from your ruby lips. That's your dishonor, or infirmity, as the case may be. Don't impose it on us. If your understanding of American history doesn't explain why this is anathema to our core values, you might want to take a basic history course.

As to the Iraq War, no. See, again, there were these little wars, called the American Revolution, the War of 1812, World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and Desert Storm. You might do well to again have me underscore that World War II thing--remember, where Winston Churchill reached out to the U.S. because Germany was beating Europe senseless while she was curled up in the corner sucking her thumb. Presumably, your peeps sat back and watched and were, of course, ungrateful after we beat up the bad guys for you. The point is, U.S. history didn't begin on your birthdate, son.

Illegal wars? As declared by whom-Kofi? Yeah, a genocidal despot is no problem. Sure, burn your own people with chemical weapons, and then throw a few hundred thousand of them in mass graves. No, no, that doesn't look like Hitler or anything. It's that same denial that got your ass kicked the first time. Unlike the last time, however, where those like you rolled over and millions of lives were lost, perhaps we decided that people like you just weren't good at handling this despot thing and that maybe we should just take care of it.

Know your role.


Dave

Anonymous said...

Above, it seems that the homo sapientissimus or the american uglissimus, as it were, has been isolated.

Of course, declension...smeclension.
Mr. Dave can no doubt help with that.

Au revoir, Mr. Dave, ma chere!
Tu es tres belle et ,sans doute,
as un tres grande cle, n'est-ce pas?!

EiASz

Nathan said...

hey dave

I'm an american who owns guns

I enjoy them

but I wish they had never been invented

ever

they do not make me feel safer

I'm glad control exists and am in favor of more of it

I'm tired of extremist idiots believing that guns keep us free

in the old days of muskets and cannons guns worked

however my rifle is of little use against america's air force

game's over. they have seized total control.

welcome to a nation-sized asylum where the inmates have guns

Nathan said...

substitute "gun-control" for control

thank-you

Anonymous said...

Nathan,

Yeah, like I said, I don't own one because it's unnecessary, now. When I was young, and my family was poor, and vulnerable to the underbelly of our neighborhood, my father had them, because the criminals in our neighborhood had them. If we still lived there, or if I lived someplace like Compton, I'd have one, for sure.

For my cousin, a really beautiful girl, who during college lived in a marginal neighborhood, and had a gun pointed at her by a would-be rapist in her bedroom, it worked out well. He stood up to take his pants off, she reached into the night stand, grabbed a gun my uncle had given her for protection, he leaped at her, and she blew the scumbag's head off. It was a favorable outcome from where we sit. She's with us, safe, and now married with children. He's gone.

For now, I'm not worried about the U.S. Air Force turning on me, or Al Qaeda lurking in my bushes. I'm worried about other young girls, or families, who have to deal with similar dirtbags. There are no shortage of those in the U.S. And, the vast majority of gun owners in the U.S., who have their guns lawfully registered, and who primarily use them for hunting, aren't the ones doing even the slightest amount of harm. It's the criminals who have them illegally, and unregistered, who are doing the vast majority of harm. What's gun control going to do to stop the Bloods and Crips? Nothing. They'll have them, and no one else will. No thanks.


Dave

Anonymous said...

Wake up people America is in its last day's of the Roman Empire phase in 20 years time the bully will become the bullied.

Anonymous said...

I thought it strange too when I heard a security guard at a church shot and killed the gunman. My church doesn't have an armed guard.

Fortunate that church had an armed guard though, I read she probably saved 100 lives by shooting the gunman before he went medieval on the rest of the people. She wasn't even a paid security guard, she was a volunteer.

Can they amend the 5th Commandment? Otherwise I think the security guard might be in a little bit of trouble down the road...R

Anonymous said...

i had written a long post re: america's focus on freedom, but i won't post it since i'm not in the mood to having it be ripped apart by someone who obviously thinks they are 100% right about everything (because if tradition and history has created an attitude, it MUST be the right attitude!).

however, to dave: "Most Americans don't want national health insurance of any sort. We're smart enough to know that huge bureaucratic systems funded by insane taxation are garbage and don't work. Competitive medical care, and private insurance, results in the best medical care."
yeah, except.. the fact that something works doesn't mean the opposite doesn't work better. norway (look it up, named "best country to live in" by the UN) has healthcare funded by high taxes. trust me, it works. both for rich people and poor people. a lot of people in norway agree with me that making hospitals private is basically saying "if you have money, no matter how you got it, you deserve better care than those who don't". making everything private (hospitals, schools..) isn't giving people the right to choose. it's giving rich people, no matter how they got their money, the right to choose.

streakfreak said...

Dave:

When the size of just one of your multiple replies dwarfs the size of the blogger's post, it might be time to start a blog of your own, instead of swamping someone else's blog with your nationalistic views.

That's MY opinion.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Streakfreak also America only has 20 years so it really should start making some friends it's gonna need them.

Pablo Kickasso said...

The best part of course is that the preacher who founded this "megachurch" was later kicked out OF HIS OWN CHURCH when he admitted to a three year relationship with a male prostitute and regular use of narcotics, esp. meth.

Anonymous said...

Streak,

When the content of your only reply doesn't advance the ball one yard, but rather exposes your paranoia while offering a malapropism, it's probably time to look into Prozac and a good dictionary.

But I'll play along. What do you want to do? Should we tell Paperlilies she's pretty, that we love her accent, and like the colors of her blog? What are we potted plants?

I'm not here for you, or to hold your hand. I don't even know you. The blog raised some really interesting topics, and by the looks of some of the replies, without my offerings, the world would have gone yet another day with some really obnoxious and whacked out views of both American history and life.

Anyhow, nationalism is a belief that nations will benefit from acting alone rather than collectively, emphasizing national goals. It's more akin to isolationism than anything you'd make it out to be. It was nationalism by European countries, and the U.S. prior to Pearl Harbor, that gave rise to Hitler. When the UK and US wised up, that's when things finally turned around.

Nothing I wrote here has anything to do with MY opinion. I don't deal in opinions.


Dave

Anonymous said...

Mr. Health Care,

Yeah, Norway is great, if you like a 70% marginal tax rate, and working until October, before you take home any money to your family. Even if your premise was true, you'd have great health care and a lousy life.

If you get cancer, are you going to Norway, or the Mayo Clinic? Please, humor me. Having a doctor from Norway or one from Johns Hopkins is like the difference between a 1974 Ford Pinto and a Porsche 911 Carerra.

I was poor my entire childhood and never once did I not get health care when I was sick. There's Medicaid at the federal level, and now charity care in nearly every State. It's a complete non-issue except for the communists amongst us who just hate our country and like creating false issues.

It has nothing to do with me being right. It just is.

Dave

Anonymous said...

Like you I'm not at all religous so i don't claim to understand enigmas like this either Bryony.But i suspect that the price for understanding would be the loss of my own humanity. What i'm trying
to say is that whilst i'm not sure if there is such a thing as
good and evil,would understanding evil make me evil? Forgive me for
being flippant,but if the answer to that question is Yes then i say
SOD THAT FOR A LARK and i'll stick with just feeling it's wrong thank you!

Love to see that your blog is becoming very special to many people and that in some ways it is becoming even more intimate and open hearted than your videos.

Hope you don't mind faceless anonymous comments.But i feel that
there's more freedom to speak your mind when you are anonymous.Also when YOU don't know comments by name you wont ever have to feel dissappointed if you don't like a comment from me;unless you can guess it's from me. On the other hand perhaps i'm just too chicken to be me!Ha!

Anonymous said...

This was some major entertaining shit. Kudos to all.

Anonymous said...

if you don't get it, then do some research and try to get it!

the bible is made up of fire and fucking brimstone, not love and peace.

search for richard dawkins on YT. you might then understand the mentality of it all. good luck.

Anonymous said...

"Unlike the last time, however, where those like you rolled over and millions of lives were lost, perhaps we decided that people like you just weren't good at handling this despot thing and that maybe we should just take care of it."

Dave,

thanks for clearing that up for us. As "we" were "rolling over" and "crying like a little bitch" "your" intervention didnt have anything to do with Pearl harbour and protecting your own country did it? No you were being noble and saving lives, whilst Europe had been doing what exactly?

I understand your motivation for your first post, but it had a strongly accusatory tone, you have to be prepared for some poeple to take offence, and write some rather low brow defensive responses. If that was offencive to you, why stoop to their level? Debate isn't about throwing insults its about discussion.

All of you, enough of this foolery!!

zombiejesus said...

Byrony quote
"why not tasers, or batons, if anything??"
Byrony you dont bring a taser to a gun fight Bryony. It suck I am not religious but if that woamn hd not have shot him he may have done more damage ( killing) to much to get into on a little blog tho your right about that.

Anonymous said...

Dave,

Just because the belief that everyone has "the right to bear arms" is imbued in American culture does not make it right.

I disagree vehemently with any kind of gun culture. In Australia, there are hardly guns, at all. Of course, thugs will always get their hands on them, but with all the bans and whatever, Australia's become quite a safe place.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous Aussie,

Let me break this down in the most basic of ways. England is our mother. She's your mother too. She was a little too overbearing controlling, and preachy. So, we split to America and you split to Austrailia.

Now, since that time that we both left home, in just a little over 200 years for us, among many other things, we've done the following: (1) become the wealthiest nation in the world; (2) established the strongest military in the world; (3) developed the most devastating weaponry in the world; (4) established the best medical, law, business, and technological schools in the world; (5) produced the best doctors, lawyers, businessmen and inventors in the world; (6) save the Beatles, Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin, produced the best entertainers in the world and, as you must concede, the list just goes on and on and on and on.

Now, you decided that you wanted to go to Aussie Land to hang out on the beach. That was your choice. You've kept your beaches really nice. It's looks like you're having fun. That's great. We can't help but be a little envious at times. Why, however, should we abandon our culture, and more importantly, change our revered Constitution, just because our less than industrious brother, hanging out on the beach and catching waves, considers it advisable that we not have guns?

If we've gotten everything else right, just maybe we know what's best, FOR US, with respect to guns. If we want advice on how to catch a wave, and the best surfboard to buy, you'll be the first to get a call. In the meantime, you just keep taking orders from Mommy England while we continue to do our own thing. And, the next time that you and her run into the bad guys, see how you do without us running to your rescue. That's all I'm saying.



Dave

Anonymous said...

Anonymous Englishman,

You're right. That's what I was saying. We should have been more considerate and not waited until we were attacked.

The rest is just polemics. How could the joke be lost on anyone? Am I just not funny at all?

Dave

Anonymous said...

Dear People-who-have-read-this-far,

I apologize for the immoderate length of this posting. It is just that I have no appreciable sense of humor.
_______________________________


Dear Dave,

Why not be friendly?

How is it that you do not see your arguments as subjective "If we've gotten everything else right,..." as well as arrogant "because Germany was beating Europe senseless while she was curled up in the corner sucking her thumb"?

How many Europeans died resisting the Germans? Apparently, the number was not large enough to garner your approval. France, for example, lost 250,000 military lives and 270,000 civilian lives. Does this fit your analysis of Europeans?

Do you genuinely feel insulted as an American by the PL commentary on the church shooting?

Is it an emotional reaction that you are having or are you simply trying to assert that American culture is better than any possible criticism?

A list to consider:
-habeas corpus?
-Guantanamo Bay?
-Abu Ghraib?
-extraordinary rendition?
-torture?
-waterboarding?
-ignoring global climate change?
-war on Iraq?
-non-action in Darfur?
-capital punishment?
-for-profit prisons?
-Blackwater Guards?
...

To PL's commentary, one must admit that the juxtaposition in a church environment of 'turn the other cheek' and having an armed guard is a bit self-contradictory to say the least.

If guns were strictly controlled in the USA, would the armed guards still be necessary?

As is well known, there have been several widely-reported shooting incidents in the USA in the last few weeks: Westroads (9 dead), Vegas (6 wounded), Colorado (5 dead), ....

There was even a situation in Pasadena, Texas (2 dead) in which a man's neighbor executed a couple of would-be burglars as the police arrived: the neighbor saw them leaving a domicile with apparent plunder in hand. Long story short, he told the 911 operator he could not allow this to happen, went outside and simply killed both of them with his shotgun.

As of yet, the local government down in the Pasadena area (Houston) cannot decide if he should be charged with anything.

The deceased suspects of course were tried, convicted and executed.

When approached with a gun, what should a person do? Stand, flee or close the distance to the gunman seem to be the three options. One suspect fled - he was killed. One suspect apparently attempted to close the distance - he was killed.

In terms of threat potential, fleeing is the least threatening of the three possibilities. Joe Horn decided that flight from a burglary is punishable by death. Is this the rule of civil law under any rational person's interpretation?

Or does this align more closely with what one might expect from a military situation or, say, from the Blackwater Guards (US Mercenaries in Iraq)?

(Acting in a similar, omnipotent manner, Blackwater recently murdered 17 Iraqi civilians in Nisour Square in Baghdad.)

Civilian-on-civilian shooting incidents stretch back to Columbine (15 dead, 20+ wounded), to the University of Iowa (6 dead, 1 wounded) and to before that.

(In compiling the above figures, it occurred to me that I had totally forgotten the Virginia Tech Massacre (33 dead, 17 wounded, 6 injured) earlier this year. What does it say about a society in which gun violence is so commonplace?)

How do any of the above-mentioned situations square with "right"?

How do you square "right" with genocide against Native Americans and with centuries of slavery?

How do you square "right" with people not having access to adequate health care?

For example, if a person walks into an emergency room in Israel with no insurance, the bill is about $240. In the USA, the same bill is about $1700.

What is minimum wage? It is less than $10 per hour. So, if a person were to work at a wage which is slightly above minimum wage for 40 hours a week, in one month, $1600 minus taxes would be left to pay for one's existence. This sum is comparable to one visit to the emergency room, and the sum doesn't even include the expense of buying any prescribed medicine to treat any diagnosed condition.

So, why would anyone want a universal payer health care system in the USA?

Please note that just because you claim to have been poor and claim to have pulled yourself up in some fashion, not everyone has had the same opportunities that you have had.

Many have had worse situations. For example, you are still alive. Those who met with death are not.

You may have worked hard and may be justifiably proud of that, but you should not allow yourself to believe that circumstances do not exist that could have rendered your efforts useless.

By the way, your background sounds impressive; how about scanning and posting your bona fides so the various people posting here can see your diploma from Princeton, et cetera. Still, an argument from authority does not lead to a valid argument. (N.B., being related to a valorous individual does nothing for your valor; if you have any decorations, please scan them and post them with the certificates. Otherwise, leave the merit with those who have earned it.)

Lastly, how do you square "right" with the USA's horrific misadventure in Iraq?

How many people is the USA allowed to kill directly or indirectly before it loses any claim to any sort of morality?

Does the rhetorical argument that 'freedom is on the march' validate any of this? This is another logical fallacy.

All of the above aside, you asked if you were not funny at all. I'll leave that answer in a famous quotation from Catullus:

"Nam risu inepto res ineptior nulla est."

Winfield

Anonymous said...

Q: Why did Al Gore turn down an invitation to "Dancing with the Stars"?

A: He had no algorithm for winning.

(See, I have not a trace of a sense of humor.)

Winfield

Anonymous said...

Winston,

Here's an instructional video that you might enjoy. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MPgkZfaA_K8

I clearly owe you an apology of immense proportion. A man who cites the French for valor is indeed a man blessed with great humor. That reminds me, have you heard about the new French flag? Apparently, it's a white cross emblazoned on a white background.

As to the balance of your post, it's simply far too lengthy for me to offer a proportional response. I mean, I don't mind reading, re-reading, and then reading again, my own posts, but when faced with the chore of reading someone else's work, it's far too tiresome. I think a fair response, however, is: "Don't let perfect be the enemy of good."

You sound like a decent man, so let me end by saying: "God day Ole Chap." I learned that parting phrase from the one or two English television shows that have made it to the American airwaves in the last 230+ years.

Dave

paperlilies said...

'Dave'. You are a racist tool. I am not going to put these comments on non-anonymous but I do encourage everyone to ignore Dave who is clearly being a douchebag for the sake of it. You are not adding anything more of interest to this discussion so I am going to ignore you and whatever response you feel you need to make to this (in essay form).

You are boring.

Anonymous said...

Paperlilies,

Racist? In how many African-English weddings have you been the Maid of Honor? Or, how many African-English godchildren do you have and support? Where African-Americans are concerned, I score three for "Best Man" and three for "Godfather". So, either I'm a liar, or your ability to evaluate people needs a lot of work.

And, what? Is self-indulgent sarcasm a throne upon which only you may sit? Clearly, you jealously guard preaching to the congregation of others. Do you have any advice on what we should name our children or eat for dinner? The mirror is for more than just your make-up, Paperlilies.

But, hey, I admit to one fault for sure. I don't think I would have guessed that patronizing "You're so pretty" comments, or anonymous "I'd like to hit it" comments, would be enough to carry you through your day. Given your comment, however, it is fairly clear that you didn't exactly graduate from Oxford or Cambridge.

Boring? Short of this thread, which has attracted the only interest and scholarship to date, your blog barely had a heartbeat. It was practically written in crayon. At least be intellectually honest if you're not going to have a sense of humor.

Essay form? Obviously, it's not an effort. But, hey, I'm not the kind of person who is going to attack the less gifted who just shoot from the hip (pun intended).
You know what I'm saying?

Dave

Anonymous said...

Dave,

And were you educated at Cambridge or Oxford...?

Stop oversimplifying Australian life, and overglorifying the United States because it is by no stretch of the imagination that the USA is, while a land of wealth and opportunity, a land of problems - and large ones at that. Wait, let's think about what you've gotten wrong. Segregation laws. Anti-black sentiment. Oh, let's not forget Iraq. Afghanistan. Cuba. Philippines.

So before you go on placing your country on the pedestal, at least try to incorporate some intellectual integrity by being able to see both sides of the argument.

"Why would we want to change our revered Constitution...?"

Um, let's think, you obnoxious loser. MAYBE BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE KILLED FROM GUNFIRE?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?
Frankly, I find you far too tiresome myself to read your posts. Arrogant and self-righteous.

You may rule at arguing.

But you suck at life. /End.

Anonymous said...

Aussie Man,

I really should be getting paid for this, but I know she's broke.

Where I was educated has already been made clear. To be sure, my undergrad studies, in government, were at the world's most prestigious undergraduate institution for government. My Master's Degree in business is from the world's oldest and most prestigious business university (in the 230 year-old U.S. no less), and my Juris Doctorate was earned at one of the world's premier schools of law. You know, that same university that produced the two guys who now bring you Youtube, Google and this blog--the three things that sustain PL's existence? You wouldn't have known any of this, of course, if some half lucid person wouldn't have been ridiculous enough to actually bring it into the debate.

With that behind us, let's see if I can spoon feed this to you, one more time, to make it easy on your delicate, little tummy. It was supposed to be a joke. It was intended (obviously to any thinking person), to be a caricature of the twisted stereotype that those like you, and PL, impose upon Americans. Apparently, it was done so well, that you and the person now known to me, not as the Princess of Sarcasm, but the whiney little schoolgirl, that you, her, and a few others, swallowed it hook, line and sinker. It's typically known as rhetoric, polemnics, and sarcasm, to those sitting at the adult table. I thought I clued everyone in several posts ago, but you guys apparently like tilting at windmills.

For whatever it's worth, now that your fragile soul has been already battered, I'm opposed to the Iraq War, for various reasons, none of which probably matter to you. I don't personally care about guns, at all. And, I couldn't care less if a woman has 10 abortions because that woman is neither smart enough, hot enough, nor selective enough, to ever make it anywhere near my bed.

The only place where I might take issue with most on this blog is on the God debate. One of the greatest scientists/philosophers in English history said something like (and I'm paraphrasing): A little philosophy inclineth a person toward atheism, and a lot of philosophy inclineth a man toward religion. Stated otherwise, those with few life experiences, and who have never discovered anything in their lives, tend to trust science alone, and those persons who have actually been in the game, and toiled with the larger issues, realize that there is a force far more powerful than him or her at work.

As for your country, I've been there several times and would die happily on one of its beaches. You have a slightly different view on what's significant, and it's no less important or valid than our view.

So, can I offer you a tissue or anything? How's it feel to have me on the same side of the issues as you? Come on, get in the game...son.


Dave

Anonymous said...

P.S. Hey, Aussie, you gave me two great ideas. I think maybe I'll drum up support for an Amendment to the Constitution prohibiting the use of automobiles, and another which bans butter. They each kill 1000x the people which handguns do in America. See, it wasn't all for nothing. We'll be better for it no doubt.

Anonymous said...

It's already happened. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godwin's_law

Steve from Colorado, USA said...

Paperlillies is so pretty. I'd like to hit it, um, I mean her.

Other than that, I'm with Dave all the way.

~Nayan~ said...

where you left ??
Left Blogging :

half_pint said...

"I just don't get it. I do not get this. I do not understand."

Ever thought that might be because you are as thick as two short planks?

Where is the peace and love in allowing a nutter to shoot up a churches congregation?

I don't think you quite get it, the church promote peace and love, by shooting the gunman there is more peace and love.

Geddit, Einstein?

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