Monday, December 17, 2012

A quick comparison

Number of children killed by rifle fire in Connecticut that makes Barack Obama cry: 20.

Number of children killed by CIA drone strikes in Pakistan that does not make Barack Obama cry: 176 and counting.


Zin said...

Your hate towards Obama is really showing Grump.

Anonymous said...

Number of false equivalencies made in this post: 1.

Rakewell said...

Hate? No. Contempt? Yes.

Koala said...

I love how some people blame the world's problems on President Obama when he was not even the President when the USA decided to move into the Middle East with all their military might.

Rakewell said...

Oh, I'm perfectly willing to throw Bush on the same trash heap as Obama. I have approximately equal contempt for both of them, and for basically the same reasons. Both of them propagated unnecessary wars in our name, both of them have trampled civil liberties, both of them have grossly abused executive power, both of them have spent us into oblivion, both of them have no respect for constitutional limits on governmental power, both of them lie shamelessly about what they are doing and why, and so on.

sevencard2003 said...

since when did koala start reading blogs again?

John Burkard, MD said...

Dear Grump,

I understand your contempt. I don't appreciate it, but understand it. That said, what happened in Connecticut is a true tragedy, nothing more. Don't feel that this is an opportunity for you to espouse hatred. It's not. Your comments are nothing short of despicable and vile. While you have the right to say what you feel, so too does your audience have the right to go elsewhere. I have enjoyed your blog. You are better at writing about poker. Stick to that.

Josie said...

A quick comparison:

The last couple of Grump posts that I do not love...

Someone who doesn't show empathy and respect and uses this horror as a platform for other agendas.

nottom said...

While I am not a fan of using tragedy to push one's own political agenda, I think Grump does have a somewhat valid point here even if his presentation isn't the best.

Why should we be any less upset about kids being bombed in Pakistan as those poor children killed in Conn. Are their lives less important because they live on the other side of the world? If the news media covered each drone incident that killed a bunch of civilians with the same kind of enthusiasm as they cover events like the recent mass shootings in the US, I can't help but think that US drone policy would be significantly different (and less deplorable) today.

RedXBranch said...

1) For debate to occur there MUST be ATLEAST two view points.

2) There is absolutely nothing wrong with pointing out hypocracy.

3) I'd say it is a safe assumption that 90% of the people who are showing so much interest in this tragedy can have said interest characterized as voyeuristic.

4) Because of (3) it is as good an opportunity as any to introduce new facts to those people. ie. that drone strikes administered by our government kill many children around the world.

BigD said...

My sincere hope is that at least something positive can come from this unspeakable tragedy. It's not enough to simply pontificate a position, or to point to an ancient document that outlines an inalienable right to bear almost any and all personal arms as though it was perfectly written by a all knowing deity.

It's time to recognize guns for what they really are, which is a tool for killing or maiming living things. Yes, such tools can be used responsibly, but the risk of having them about has to be balanced by their usefulness.

It's time for the United States to have a rational discussion about guns. No NRA silliness. No left wing "ban all guns" nut jobs. Debate about where guns are useful and necessary, and where they are not. Examinations about how other nations do things. Talk about 2nd amendment reform to reflect the modern reality that a militia with small arms would not be an effective counter to the state-run military. Why on earth should a school teacher need a military-grade assault rifle? One's right to pursue such a gun hobby should be debated against the rights of those who may be affected by the mere possibility that a friend/neighbor/demented child/burglar may "borrow" that firearm and cause unspeakable torment and chaos. How can society trust that those with access to guns will act responsibly, when we know that there are unstable outliers out there who will not.... It's time at least to have the discussion.

What are people scared of? That the constitution could be determined to be flawed? That you'll have to dial back some "freedom", even though in so many other ways you're not free?

This is my hope, but my expectations are so low. The barn door is already open, and so many are stubborn. The gun lobby is influential. Today's media and poll driven politicians generally don't have the character to take on an issue of this magnitude. Likely it will fade to the background and nothing will change. But I do hope that all americans take a moment and think about those 20 kids and think "do guns really make us better?".

And for the specifics of this post, Grump, both cases you mention are unacceptable. However, to pin in entirely on a president is woefully misguided. The "American People" enable both situations. Have a look in the national mirror over the last 50 years and you'll see that it's not a symptom of the contemporary political landscape, but rather the mentality of the national collective.

Wolynski said...

You're right, Grump, many more children get murdered by American bombs than by madmen in Connecticut, which, of course, makes the occasional domestic school slaughter perfectly acceptable.

And you're right about the statistics concerning mass shootings - they're down, which should comfort the parents of Sandy Hook no end. What a relief.

Teachers should carry assault weapons to school on a daily basis to prevent future mass killings. Good idea, don't you think?

THOMAS said...

i'm a teacher and certainly don't want to have to carry a gun to school. for the record, i don't own a gun...and never plan too.

if someone wants to do something badly enough, they will find a way. i really don't think more gun laws and control is the answer.

Anonymous said...

Grump: You have no idea what happened in private. Readers: remember, this is coming from someone who wastes his precious vote on a snowball-in-hell candidate.

Anonymous said...

Number of weapons stockpiled by terrorist groups inside Sandy Hook Elementary: 0

Unfortunately POS terrorist don't have any problem using women and children as human shields. Also, anti-American media outlets often misreport deaths caused by drone strikes or other military action.

Anonymous said...

What's your point Grump? Both are unacceptable and should be stopped, no exceptions.

I do feel that stopping the sale of assault rifles will limit the type of murder spree that occurred on Friday.

It's unfortunate that people neglect the children killed overseas by American military action, and let the president get away with it. However it's human nature to feel more of a connection when this happens closer to home.

At the end of the day there is no reason why people should be allowed to legally purchase assault rifles.

Jordan said...

Would it be okay if Obama cried about the children killed by drones? It would certainly resolve your efforts to suggest hypocrisy, but I doubt it would change your opinion of Obama.

Would if have been better if Obama ignored the situation in Connecticut? Once again, it resolves your implications of hypocrisy, but I doubt it actually would change your opinion on Obama's policies re: drones.

So, what is the point? It just appears to be a petty jab at the President. I am no friend of Obama, but this post was a bit of a stretch for a rational-thinking guy like you, Grump.

Anonymous said...

The simple fact is that guns are not compatible with 21st century civilized life. We should get rid of them. If we can't get rid of them today, we should at least start the process of getting rid of them for the future. The world needs a future without guns.

No one should have guns. Not criminals, not responsible citizens, not the police. Guns should be safely locked away for use in a serious emergency and issued to police officers on a limited basis only when necessary. Even most police don't need guns.

What about criminals? They have guns. Don't we need guns to fight them with? Sure, maybe for a while. But after a hundred years with no guns, the supply will dry up even for criminals. We should be planning for the future, not arming for the present.

What about the Constitution? Gun rights are enshrined in the Second Amendment to the US Constitution. Well, I have news for Constitutional fundamentalists: The US Constitution has been changed 27 times. It can be changed again.

Lest we forget, the Second Amendment was itself a change to the Constitution. That's why we call it an "amendment." It wasn't there at first.

In fact, the Second Amendment only prevents the federal government from infringing "the right to keep and bear Arms." States could have all the gun control they want if it weren't for the later 14th Amendment that extends rights under the federal Constitution to apply to state actions as well.

Even this thin reed of gun rights has only existed since 2010. In the 2010 McDonald v. Chicago case, the activist US Supreme Court reversed 142 years of precedent to extend the meaning of the 14th Amendment to prohibit states from prohibiting guns.

It did so by a 5-4 margin. In other words, the nationwide Constitutional protection for gun ownership only came into existence in 2010 (not 1791) and even then by one single vote. So much for the everlasting, inalienable right to own a gun.

No, the fact that there are so many guns in America has nothing to do with the Constitution. It has much more to do with lobbying by gun manufacturers and gun owners. The power of the gun lobby is insane. So is the rhetoric of gun owners, with all this talk about prying things out of cold, dead hands.

I understand that not every gun owner is insane. Many people own guns to protect themselves. That's not insane. It's just misguided. Your gun is statistically more likely to be used to hurt people you love than to protect them.

Millions of other responsible adults simply like to play with guns, and are able to do so safely. People like to collect them, hunt animals with them, or just go shoot them for the fun of it. If that's sanity, so be it. We all have our hobbies.

But not all hobbies are created equal. Some hobbies are inherently dangerous, to ourselves and to others. Sure, some people can use guns safely. Some people can also smoke crack safely, drink and drive safely and handle explosives safely. We don't let them because too many other people can't.

Sometimes we have to accept that what's safe fun for us may be just too dangerous for others, and that we have to make sacrifices for the common good. Any parent with children of different ages understands this. The 6-year-old can't have a toy with small parts because the 3-year-old might try to eat one and choke to death.

Gun ownership is a great hobby. It was fun while it lasted. But easy access to guns is incompatible with daily life in 21st century society. There are no bandits on the prairie. There are no wolves at the door. It's time to get rid of guns. If that means a 28th change to the Constitution, so be it. It's worth it.

by Truthout

Anonymous said...


HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHA you are the nutty one. I have a very dangerous job and I need a gun for self protection. I have had to draw my gun 3 times to save my life. In your utopia world I would be dead and my wife and kid would not have anyone to take care of them. I will turn my guns ....yes guns I carry 2 and have many at the house. When you can prove to me that my gun will be the last gun in this country, till then I will keep it on me so I can go home at night.