Apr 19·edited Apr 19Liked by Bill Astore

JUST ANOTHER VET posted this to WordPress BV. It is well worth the read and ponder… :

Add this one to the list:

” A man has been arrested after two Texas cheerleaders were shot, one critically, after one of them mistakenly got into the wrong vehicle, according to police and the owner of the gym where they trained…


So don’t ring the wrong doorbell, or pull into the wrong driveway, or open the wrong car door, or for that matter don’t go:

To the grocery store

To church

To the mall

To school

To work

To a bar

To a birthday party

To a park

To a protest

To a movie

Because you might get shot. This is America. This is what freedom means apparently.


Growing up we didn’t have guns in our house. My dad said he had had his fill of them in Vietnam. Fast forward to today: my now mid-70’s parents are going to the gun range and trying to figure out which guns are best for them to carry around. They are caught up in the fear and fantasy genre of the American Vigilante. They are going to blast those bad guys by god, and defend freedom and liberty, something, something.

They have also added cameras all around their house. Mind you they have never been robbed. But they are afraid. Of what? Everything at this point based on the conversations I’ve had with them, or at least everything the television and radio tell them to be afraid of.

All their friends are the same way. Old, angry white folks ready to kill for some made up bullshit American ideal. Geriatric John Waynes with white hats going off to kill the black hats (or just blacks?).

I would feel better knowing they are not long for this world, but I see plenty of my generation out there armed to the teeth as well.


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Apr 19Liked by Bill Astore

A good essay.

Emotion rules the thinking of those wielding weapons. It would be one thing if we were witnessing a big surge in home invasions. We aren't. It would also be something if the penalty for a home break-in was death. It isn't. The reason gun advocates harp on home invasions is that for them it is an unquestionable reason for self-defense, their idea of a conversation stopper regarding gun control.

Society as a whole has been backing away from capital punishment around the world with the US tagging along. Yet, as you mention, we have individuals intent on handing out a death sentence, in fact eager to do so and for a variety of non-capital crimes such as assault, car theft, even the new "crime" of creating a threat in the mind of the gun carrier as states legislate Stand Your Ground to give it an official OK. To shoot down a person in the driveway or at the front door shows the obsession of the homeowner, vigilant and waiting for the imagined home invader.

As police have shown great difficulty in using their weapons appropriately, we move toward every man making himself a policeman along with the ability to use the standard defenses of the police: "I was afraid". "I thought the suspect had a gun", "I felt threatened"

Meanwhile, the concept of innocent until proven guilty fades into the past. Those damned courts take forever to figure things out and then coddle criminals. Better to have instant justice at the will of one armed person.

As native-Americans faced elimination, there were instances of the fantasy that the white man's bullets would be rendered ineffective with enough faith. Now we have the mirror fantasy from the white man who feels threatened, a faith that imagined bad guys will be eliminated with firearms in the hands of "good guys"

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Yup you're Rooting tooting bet ya; Americans love their guns to death.

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This about says all that can or needs to be said about this: https://www.reuters.com/news/picture/our-top-photos-of-the-week-idUSRTSIDOCO

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Apr 18·edited Apr 18

Bill, every one of these shootings is shown dramatically on New Zealand TV.

Hence whenever people in New Zealand find out I lived 41-years in Seattle, the first thing they ask me is.... "Jeez, what was it like to live everyday in fear of being gunned down in the street?"

I always answer that in those 41-years I was never involved in a shooting incident or threatened by a person with a gun. And neither were any of my family, my friends and workmates. And we never even thought about it. And I never felt the need to have a gun.

They don't believe me, and accuse me of putting a pretty face on it.

My point is, this leaves a very false, and bad, impression of life in America.

It always makes me sad, as I am a proud American, though born in New Zealand.

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I think it's simply a matter of what you sow, so shall you reap.

Fact 1: The US is the BIGGEST ARMS MERCHANT in the History of Nations and Americans mirror that love of weapons, having more of them in private hands than any other Nation and People on Earth

Fact 2: The US introduced Nukes into this World being the only Nation to use 2 of them in WAR to kill over 200,000 Civilians.

Since then, the US has invaded and bombed only poor, 3rd World Countries with the most EXPENSIVE MILITARY FORCE in the History of Nations and couldn't get a win in any of them.

The latest humiliating debacle being the frantic exit from Kabul in 2021 after the 20 year 2 $TRILLION WAR and Occupation of Afghanistan, one of the poorest Countries on Earth.

On the way out a remote controlled US DRONE killed an Afghani Family of 10 with 7 CHILDREN. No Americans have been held accountable for that WAR CRIME.

Americans saw nothing wrong with that picture as long all those US WARS were "over there" and Americans had the low cost material things & stuff.

While Americans absolve themselves from that US History, Judgment and Justice will bring all those US WARS Home as we're seeing in real Time, and we ain't seen nothing yet.

The Explosions will be when the Economic Straitjacket tightens on Americans and mass shootings like in all those US WARS, will increase in the US.

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You cannot divorce the love of guns in the US from people so saturated with pro-gun entertainment. Movies, TV shows and video games are all focused on the wonderfulness of guns. This is where your "fun" element comes in. If all of Hollywood and TV were saturated with the reality of guns (actual wounded and dead people shown in graphic detail) rather than the Dirty Harry variety, things might be at least a bit different here in the US. The gun love indoctrination has been going on for a long time in this country (I even watched the early Bonanza, Rifleman and Gun Smoke shows when they first came out on TV). The people in this country have been marinating in that fantasy land my entire life.

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The worship of guns and gun ownership is an American pathology that is joined at the hip with "American Exceptionalism." Unless and until both are eradicated and excised from the body politic, the USA will remain a toxic outlier/rogue state.

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Since Chicago, where I am, has been mentioned several times in the comments, y'all might be interested in seeing the statistics from the Chicago Police Dept: https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/sites/vrd/home/violence-victimization.html

Scroll down to get graphs and maps. As can be seen, the number of incidents is creeping up each year. Just the other day there was a disturbance on Michigan Avenue where a person was shot and there was property damage.

My experience in the city has been free of any incidents of violence or witnessing any gun fire and this included being in the black neighborhoods walking or on a bike and daily use of the rapid transit for 23 years. But that ended over 20 years ago with retirement. Last week there was a kid killed by gunfire at a beach two miles from me. Killed by another teen.

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Nailed it again, Bill.

And Ray is absolutely correct: As the bottom falls out of the American [and the Global] economy and financial system, and the "American Dream" morphs into a Nightmare, what we have seen so far is just the beginning of a very long, dark, and ugly manifestation of the American Empire's ~ and with it, this Nation's and this People's ~ descent thru "Decline" into, thru, and beyond "Fall," all the way to chaos and collapse, and ~ as the only alternative the politicians and media can come up with ~ a totalitarian regime from Hell.

The questions are: What is to be done? And more importantly, what actually CAN be done? And most importantly, exactly Who is supposed to be going to do it?

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Why not just call 911? Well, as the saying goes, when seconds count the police are only minutes away.

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