Laura Washington. (Again)

Say Uncle is right on top of this. It used to be said, “Never pick an argument with someone who buys ink by the barrel.” Since the advent of the bit, the byte, and the pixel, this has become much less true. Still, Laura Washington is paid to produce her op-eds, and we “People of the Gun” have to respond and react on our own time and on our own dime. The “gun lobby” isn’t paying us (either that, or they’re in arrears for about twelve year’s worth of back pay to me.)

At any rate, she’s at it again, in another Chicago Sun-Times editorial calling for the election of a state representative who is running on a gun-control platform. As I have twice in the past, I sent her another email this morning:

Ms. Washington:

Since you declined to answer or even acknowledge the questions of my last email to you concerning your In These Times column “Let’s Pry Open Those Cold, Dead Hands,” I hold no hope that you will acknowledge this one. However, since I am one of those “People of the Gun” you blame Chicago’s violence on, and you’ve declared war against us, apparently, I feel required to continue to attempt diplomacy.

Your error on this topic is typical. You have mistaken two distinct cultures for only one. You are unable to distinguish between what has been called the “violent and predatory” culture from the “violent but protective” culture. You see only violence, and to you (and most urban residents) all violence is wrong, except (perhaps) violence done by uniformed officers of the State, and even there you are ambivalent.
Let me quote from a piece I read a long time ago that makes this point plainly:

Very nearly all the violence that plagues, rather than protects, society is the work of young males between the ages of fourteen and thirty. A substantial amount of the violence that protects rather than plagues society is performed by other members of the same group. The reasons for this predisposition are generally rooted in biology, which is to say that they are not going anywhere, in spite of the current fashion that suggests doping half the young with Ritalin.

The question is how to move these young men from the first group (violent and predatory) into the second (violent, but protective). This is to ask: what is the difference between a street gang and the Marine Corps, or a thug and a policeman? In every case, we see that the good youths are guided and disciplined by old men.

I will ask again the questions I raised in my previous email:

How will prying open the “cold, dead hands” or shoving “tougher gun policies” down the throats of the “People of the Gun” – people you yourself have identified as almost exclusively suburban and rural white males, have ANY effect on the behavior of young, urban, black males who are part of the culture of “violent and predatory”? And, again, don’t you think all those churches and those women could be far more effective at reducing the truly horrific carnage if they addressed their efforts directly at the young men in question, their sons and grandsons, nephews and neighbors, rather than at the suburban and rural white men who are not? Does this not hold true as well for the legislature?

Or are these questions simply too difficult for you to face, making blaming the guns and “The People of the Gun” much easier?

Tilting at windmills, but someone’s got to do it.

Quote of the Day.

As for the United States being Imperialist, to quote the immortal, you keep using that word but I don’t think it means what you think it means. I don’t think the Roman, Chinese, British, etc. Empires would have ever reached the size they did if they poured money INTO the conquered provinces.

If we’re Imperialist, well, rejoice, we suck at it on a scale never seen before in history.

From a comment by “Treefrog” to a truly excellent post by Mark Danziger, “Armed Liberal,” at Patriotism Rears its Head Again. Highly recommended; both it and the comment thread.

No News is Not Always Good News.

Well, it’s been a week and no response from my last email to Laura Washington. I guess she’s not going to respond, and there’s no chance for Reasoned Discourse™ with her. And I’ve heard nothing back from James Hupp as of yet, after two emails and another comment on his blog. I get the feeling he’s tied up in TSA hell after venting at an airline employee or six. It would be understandable. I’m hopeful this discussion will still occur, but that hope is beginning to wane.

Anyway, I’m back from my business trip, and I’ve got to get ready for Reno next weekend, but I’ve got to service my truck, load some ammo, and I’ll be working on Sunday trying to get caught up before I hit the road, so blogging will remain sparse.

I’d like to thank everybody who linked to my post on reloading. There were a lot of you. I had no idea that the subject would be so popular!

On the Road. Again.

I’ll be out of town on business again for a couple more days. Blogging will be light blah blah blah….

You know the drill.

Have fun in the comments. Clean up after yourselves. Last one out, turn off the lights!

Quote of the Day.

It’s a twofer! From American Thinker, an essay entitled President Thompson by J. Peter Mulhern:

We have gotten so used to speaking of the President of the United States “running the country” that most of us no longer notice how unrealistic and unAmerican that expression is. The whole point of the American Revolution was to establish a country without anyone to run it.

Actually, there’s a whole bunch of quotable quotes in this piece, and while I do not agree with every point Mr. Mulhern makes in it, I am in overall agreement with his analysis of Fred Dalton Thompson’s chances.

His piece is quite long (Yeah, I know: “Pot? Meet Kettle!”), but I think Tam’s take on Fred’s run is just as accurate, and far more brief:

Personally, I think in a one on one national race, Hillary might edge Giuliani or Romney, but Fred Thompson would beat her like a drum. She would look like a shrieking harpy on stage next to Mr. Folksy, and your average American just isn’t ready to vote for the Shrew over the baritone Paterfamilias. They’d better run somebody with more charisma than Rudy or Mitt, though, because to your average Survivor-watching ‘Murrican who reads no news other than the sports page, those are just another couple of white guys in suits, but they know and trust D.A. Arthur Branch and Admiral Painter because the TeeVee and Tom Clancy told them to.

Anybody Heard of This Clown?

I received an odd email today:

Tonight on PBS’ Tavis Smiley, Tavis convenes a panel to discuss “My Grandfather’s Son,” the new book by Justice Clarence Thomas and the “60 Minutes” profile that coincided with the release of the book.Guests are Marc Morial, President and CEO of The National Urban League, Princeton professor Cornel West, and Columbia University President, Farah Jasmine Griffin.

Here are some excerpts of what the panelists had to say about Justice Thomas and his interview on “60 Minutes:”

Marc Morial, President & CEO, National Urban League – “He (Thomas) seems to have forgotten that he doesn’t stand by himself, he stands amongst many who’ve experienced discrimination, who’ve experienced the pain of racial injustice, yet not at a single point in his career has he used the power of his office…to help those who he professed to be concerned about.” (In other words, Justice Thomas hasn’t used his position to discriminate in the name of “affirmative action.” – Ed.)

Cornel West, Princeton Professor – “They presented this story as if those us who are critics (of Clarence Thomas) have no good reasons to be critical of him siding with the strong against the weak, and the powerful against the relatively powerless. – I thought ‘60 Minutes’ was all about journalism, (Apparently you missed RatherGate – Ed.) what has happened to journalism these days where all you get is puff pieces that constitute an advertisement for a book. Especially with someone like Clarence Thomas who’s been a lightning-rod of this debate among all Americans concerned about truth and justice on the court and in our society.”

Farah Jasmine Griffin, Columbia Professor – “Justice Thomas used (60 Minutes) as yet another opportunity to vilify Anita Hill.” (Yes, dear. And I’m sure you’re still convinced the Duke Lacrosse players really raped that innocent young woman, too! – Ed.)

For more information on showtimes and podcast go to

Brian Steffen
Online Publicist
KCET & Tavis Smiley
[email protected]

It was addressed directly to me, not one of those blanket emails (though I’m sure I wasn’t the only person who received this). So, for guests, this Tavis Smiley has Left, Lefter and Leftest? (I’ll let you be the judge of just whom is which.)

So, they’re going to “discuss” the book, eh? Will any of them have read it before they opine? Or will it just be a modern-day book burning?

And who the hell is Tavis Smiley, and why should I care?