Category Archives: Gun control

Rainy Day Racists

It’s raining when I should be putting up more of Alanna Oswald’s and my lawnsigns. Oh well. I guess I’ll chew up a few minutes talking about something equally drenching. Racism today.

I would like to post the picture that the Girls Power group at Denfeld posted on their Facebook page. But with America being plunged into dark times by a President calling out Storm troopers to defend his larceny I don’t think pretending not to be paranoid would do any favors for the five young black women that David Kirby and I posed with last week after the meeting to discuss issues of poverty. If you can locate it on Facebook you will also find the silly video of me attempting to “floss.”

I’ve had two long standing acquaintances with whom I’ve been friendly suddenly reveal themselves to be fully released from PC constraints. In finding this freedom both have used the “N” word with me in their communications. In both cases I’ve told them if they can’t hold their fingers they should stop writing to me. They can’t resist taunting me despite this. I’ve taken to the unhelpful resort of taunting them back.

Today one of them sent me the letter he sent to an Iron Range news paper half-heartedly defending Pete Stauber. If you check the link you can discover his name which to date I’ve always kept anonymous. He also sent the email to the Duluth News Tribune’s editor Chuck Frederick. I sent my old acquaintance a terse reply and sent it to Chuck too. I know Chuck is open and honest about the tenterhooks Black Americans live every day. We both had roles in a short video used to promote a movie about Duluth’s 1920 lynching. I got the bigger role in the video’s seven minutes. The movie was to be called “Hatestorm.”

Here’s our work:


Here’s the link to my acquaintance’s letter to the Hibbing paper lamely defending Pete Stauber:
And here’s my reply after considering my acquaintance’s defense of “big shot” lover, Pete Stauber:


Too bad that when you send me emails you can’t help but call Obama a “nigger” therefore sounding no more knowledgeable than this woman. As for Stauber being too arrogant to reply to letters from critics. I don’t think I agree with you. Stauber has all the franking privileges he needs to explain himself. I think ignoring his critics is simple cowardice.


Three old codgers at work

I’m too busy to get Alzheimers. I started 2019 nursing Claudia who joined the zipper club. Fretting about Donald Trump and mulling over a second run against one of his Trumplicans. Planning a campaign to return to the Duluth School Board. Starting a book, one of about five or six I see a clear path to writing. Clearing out my kitchen in preparation for a renovation which has left our old refrigerator standing in our dining room for the last month. Studying French daily. Working my tuckus off gardening without the full assistance of my garden boss. Oh yeah and replacing almost 100 storm windows on my church.

You can see me on the upper right of this Facebook photo. I’m wearing my old Let Duluth Vote shirt which has been a paint shirt for the past few years. I’m the youngster in this trio. I’ve got sixteen months till I turn 70. Mark in the center only has two months to go and Mike on the other side has made it to 77. The other couple helpers we’ve had are also in the same age vicinity including the Mike’s bride, Linda, who took the picture yesterday.

Tomorrow will be my last day at this work until the cool of September when we will tackle another nine of the windows. After that we will probably hire professionals rather than put up five levels of scaffolding. None of us bounce as well as we did sixty years ago.

Tomorrow I’ll put in my fourth day in a row – fifth day out of the last six installing four more and taking down the staging. In the cool of September we may replace nine more leaving us about twenty left to do – the really dangerous ones.

I’ve slept well fortified with advil the last three nights but I just woke up. I crashed at a little after seven tonight, too early, and I was out of sorts. I have just managed to keep my streak of daily french studies going for over 304 days until today. I started at the church at seven this morning and left at 4:30 completely forgetting my French. When a couple hours after my french software’s deadline had past I was not happy. My aim is to learn French not keep up some arbitrary streak but still. Like winning public office, or writing a book I intend to learn to speak French at seventy! Maybe even before!!

A few book orders (donations) are still trickling in from the early June fundraising letter I sent out. I only sent out about 125 letters that weren’t returned by the postal service for changed addresses. I am not quite at a quarter of the sales I need to pay for the book’s printing. I hope the fundraising/campaign letter I’ll be sending out early next week will put me over the top or get me close. That will go to about 2,000 2nd District voters. I’ll need to raise more than book printing costs. I will still have another 10,000 District voters to send my letter too at not quite 50 cents per letter. That’s $5,000 for mailing and $3,000 for printing a book. I’ll probably hand deliver most of them to save on postage.

I haven’t had time to blog much recently. But that may be a blessing. I wonder if my frequent inundation of words doesn’t sometimes overwhelm my eight loyal readers. In checking out my visitor stats tonight I was pleased to see that over 9 percent of my 12,000 visits since August began have lasted over half an hour. I believe my book will be every bit as readable as my blog.

There was just one thing I regret not finding time for this week. Bill Rees sent in a nyaa, nyaa, nyaa, letter to the Duluth Reader on the issue of gun control. I only read his last paragraph that chided gun control advocates for not caring about black Americans who are the most likely to die by gun violence. Mr. Rees wondered if these goody-two-shoes weren’t racist as he assumed they were only concerned about white victims…….although Bill didn’t seem to be all that worried about black victims either. The accusation was just a cheap talking point.

That galled me because fifteen or twenty years ago I wrote a letter to the Trib about gun violence. This was before school shootings had become a weekly event. I don’t have very good access to things I filed away that long ago but I do recall that my letter was directed at the indifference of Second Amendment worshipers, like Rees. I criticized them for their indifference to the appallingly high gun violence in urban centers. And Bill Rees was one of the folks to write a letter disagreeing with my take on what the Constitution had to say about our promiscuous gun ownership. It appeared to me that Bill thought that inner city gun deaths were a small price to pay to secure our gun ownership rights.

Yeah Bill. I do think black lives matter every bit as much as white lives. That’s what I wish I had been able to back up with the old texts in a letter to the Duluth Reader. Oh well, my eight loyal readers got to hear me vent.

How about a book?

I am about to out a former cheerleader of mine

A former fan of mine has become a bitter critic. I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned his name before in the blog and I won’t do so in the next post. However, like other people I’ve interacted with and mentioned I leave a bread crumb trail that any enterprising person could use to track the person I’ve mentioned.

On a few occasions I gladly quoted Jim when he sent me salutory emails often beginning “Handsome Harry.” Over the last year of Trump, a man he apparently venerates now as much as he once honored me, Jim has been really pissed off with me. After he sent me an email calling Barack Obama a nigger I told him not to send me any more emails with that nefarious word in it. He ignored my request at least once. I had suggested that if he found my disdain for Donald Trump that objectionable he simply stop reading my blog.

He may have stopped reading it but today he couldn’t help himself but jab me with the unpleasant email I’ll place at the end of this post. He doesn’t use the “N” word but he calls the admirable candidate for governor of Georgia Stacy Abrams an Aunt Jemima. It would be a challenge to be much more offensive than that.

I find it ironic that Jim always conflates President Obama with Al Sharpton. That’s because his idol, Donald Trump, is a White Al Sharpton squared. At least Al is easy to ignore whereas Donald Trump’s objective for the past three years is to be on the front page of every newspaper in the world every day.

Here’s is seven minutes of an NPR interview of Stacey Abrams being so clear headed and rational that it puts most other politicians I’ve watched through the years to shame.

And here is my old ally as a reincarnation of the northern Minnesotans who once lynched three black men in Duluth (although the You Tube Christmas music he links to is nice……and the musicians are not responsible for the “stars and bars” someone else affixed to their country music carol):

Long live the Stars and Bars! Aunt Jemima lost and even Uncle Ben couldn’t help her. Neither could the race-baiter in chief Obama, Sharpton, Jackson and Harry Welty.

And Stauber beat drug smoker and vagrant Radinovich! Doesn’t get any better than than that for lawful personal, private gun owners, pro-life Americans and anti-Sierra Club Americans like me.

WARNING: I just checked the video again and this time it began with Donald Trump asking for money.

Pete Stauber – the Alt Right’s candidate

As I returned home half an hour ago from Walgreens I saw these two lawnsigns paired together two houses below my home on 21st Ave. East. Today, at a funeral for a member of our church, we learned about the murder of eleven people at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. It was six blocks away from where our pastor grew up. Her husband was so angry that he said he never wants to hear Donald Trump’s voice again. The President did imply that it was the congregants own fault for not having guards with guns at their house of worship.

I’m prepared to listen to our President for the next two years, unpleasant as that will be, because you never turn your back to a viper. That’s what I find so ironic about the this paring of signs. Pete Stauber is a cop who was shot in the line of duty. That’s just what happened to Ronald Reagan! But look at the difference between them. NRA darling Reagan got behind the Brady Bill and helped it pass in the early years of the Bill Clinton presidency.

If anyone should be in a position to suggest that compromise is due in the area of gun regulation its Pete. But Pete’s guilty of what I’ve found so detestable about politicians since my first campaign. Winning is Pete’s highest priority and far below winning is principle. Principle is down Pete’s “to do” list somewhere below buying paper plates and sporks for his election night party. Pete Stauber is a coward although if he becomes our next Congressman you can count on the Draft Dodger, Donald Trump, to call Pete a winner. To this President a “loser” is a fellow like Senator John McCain who risked his life for his nation, was captured, imprisoned, tortured and left a physical wreck but with his honor intact.

Because those worshipers in Pittsburgh made the mistake on not arming themselves to worship got they made Donald Trump the greatest victim of this tragedy. Where do they think they live?

They wouldn’t take my blood today . . .

. . . (My iron count was low) so I have an hour to put up a post. Here goes:

I’ve managed to continue my daily habit of French study today. I put in an hour early this morning for the 141st straight day. I have almost two months before I depart for France but while I will not be able to wander around a cocktail party gossiping in French I will be able to use the French language at some primitive level. I have learned just shy of 3,000 words since I began this unplanned course of study the day I turned 67 a little over seven months ago.

If voters take note of anything in this seemingly non political information it could be that I am a dogged student just like I’ve been a dogged candidate. Or it could be that beginning a course of language study at age 67 I still have the youthful mental dexterity needed by a successful leader. Or it could be that I’m not a slave to political campaigning (notwithstanding my 40-year history of running for public office.)

The point I mean to make is this. Just because my prospects of “catching lightning in a bottle” and getting elected to Congress in 2018 are vanishingly small I have not ruled out catching it. If Pete Stauber isn’t looking over his shoulder he is a fool. I know that he is timid man. That’s evident in his milquetoast response to our lying Commander and Chief:

“While no one knows the specific conversations that took place in private, the summit appears to have been a missed opportunity for the U.S. to hold Russia accountable,” said Stauber. “Russia is not our ally. We must continue to uphold the integrity of U.S. elections without any interference, and take swift action in response to any attacks on our democracy.”

Bart Simpson has the perfect response for twaddle like this “Well Duh!”

Had Barack Obama groveled at Putin’s feet like Donald Trump the Senate Republicans would have atomized themselves in a nuclear detonation. The New York Daily News got it right. (See the previous post) Pete Stauber didn’t.

I set out on this campaign with one small objective. I wanted to hit Commissioner Stauber’s naive, cheer-leading for an ignorant, unAmerican demogauge in the head with a two-by-four. So far so good, but what I’ve done pales compared to the damage Donald Trump has inflicted on every Republican this year.

My forty dollar contribution (as yet unspent) and my blog and the interviews I’m accorded as a candidate more than make up for the $800,000 of “dark money” given to Pete Stauber in the name of “free speech.” And Trump’s IRS just made it easier for billionaires and corporations to hide even more of their free speech. I wonder when Republicans will give conspirators the right of free (and secret) speech too? Second Amendment fanatics are taking advantage of the First Amendment big time.

Trump has just bent over backward to make America a sleazier, swampier more dangerous place. He’s become a gun pusher making it possible for terrorists to get free internet plans to 3D print automatic weapons. And its all being done in the name of “free speech”. Pretty soon we will be allowed to shout “fire” in a dark, crowded theater. I hope retired cop Pete Stauber is paying attention. And I wonder. Does candidate Stauber carry a concealed weapon?

“Beware the Jackboot” – my latest Reader Column

The Readers are still being placed in their bins across town but my column is already on their website. I don’t want to discourage anyone from picking up the newsprint so here’s the first paragraph:

“I had a friend who talked me into taking an NRA gun safety class with him. I don’t remember anything more important than what I had already known. Never point a gun at anybody.”

Damn it. I repeated the word “recent” in one of the sentences and another “sentence” seems to be a clause short of full sentence-hood. Ah, but I’m up to seven columns in my latest Reader run. That’s far short of the 100 I’d written in my first engagement but a nice start.

News from Palm Beach

Attendance dropped as much as 90 percent at a gun show 52 miles and four days removed from Florida’s deadliest school shooting amid controversy over how prominent signs should be and whether the event should be held at all, the show’s promoter said Sunday. “It was very awkward timing,” said Kevin Neely of Brooklyn Firearms Co. “People are angry,” he said. “Do I blame them?…

58 deaths, so far, in Los Vegas

I searched my voluminous files for the letter I once wrote to the Editor of the News Tribune calling for sensible gun regulation. It was noteworthy because the editors placed the picture of a gun pointing at the reader above it. I can’t remember how long ago it was that it was published. I didn’t find it.

But readers will find what I think of our promiscuous national gun policy in posts found in my gun control category.

The chickens are coming home to roost…

…and leave a lot of droppings in the GOP’s coup.

I find it ironic that the GOP which in the Reagan years once vilified (correctly) the Democrats for being a bunch of special interests is now suffering the same fate having become a party of its own special interests. This point was brought home by two stories in the press today on how the public has retreated from two central guideposts of the GOP cannon.

From the DNT’s first Page – “Support for legal abortion continunes to grow”:

As if to further bolster the argument that liberalism is having a resurgence in the United States, the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll shows that, for the first time ever, a majority of Americans – 54 percent – now believe abortion should be legal all or most of the time. Even more broadly, a full 70 percent believe that Roe v. Wade – the controversial decision that, 40 years ago, guaranteed a woman’s right to an abortion, at least in the first trimester of pregnancy – should not be overturned.

Darned DNT doesn’t have their story on its site. I got this from the Christian Science Monitor (A paper that my Dad subscribed to for years) The DNT’s story mentions that ten years ago rather than 54% it was only 44 percent of the public that believed abortion should be legal. More critically the number of Republicans who feel intensely about this issue is shrinking.

The other poll issue was on page three and was about making it easier for illegal immigrants to enter the US. Once again the DNT’s story is only in newsprint. This comes from ABC:

“More than 6 in 10 Americans now favor allowing illegal immigrants to eventually become U.S. citizens, a major increase in support driven by a turnaround in Republicans’ opinions after the 2012 elections.(the story goes on to say that two years ago instead of 60% support it was only 47% support.

Two more GOP special interests that have taken a big hit are the NRA’s no compromise Second Amendment enthusiasts and the religious lobby that wants to keep gays closeted or make them normal. Expect the GOP’s Global warming and science deniers to fall from grace next.

I’ve waited for this all to happen since 1992 when I made my first break with the GOP and ran a quixotic independent campaign for Congress. I returned to the fold afterwords for about ten years but was kept on the margin by the new leaders of the party that were happy to go to conventions and explain that folks like me were the worst butchers in the history of the world. I guess they were accommodationists because after publicly announcing that I was worse than Papa Stalin, Adolph Hitler and Mao combined they were always very nice to me.

As my buddy (who seems to have given up emailing me) often says I’ve got my undies in a bunch over Republicans when Democrats can be expected to overreach with their rhetoric. It makes me think that before I die I should start attending GOP caucuses again (since my political future went over the cliff twenty ago) on the off chance that I can bring a little Lincoln pragmatism back to the party.

I have some personal theories about both parties and their excesses during my lifetime. I think that the GOP was overrun by College Republicans who all majored in business and decided that ethical considerations were a waste of time when short term tactics like stomping out independent thinking would lead to better election results and paychecks. In this regard they were as amoral as the mortgage industry’s specialists who approved unjustified home loans or Vatican priests who preferred to cover up and pay off the victims of clergy sexual abuse.

The book I hope to write someday will chronicle a different age when a similar sort ran the DFL in Northern Minnesota – political hacks with their hands out for government dollars.

Thus it was and ever shall be. Don’t believe me? Watch Spielberg’s Lincoln and enjoy the comic performance of James Spader as the 13th Amendment’s amoral, arm-twisting lobbyist.

I’m ready for a new set of racketeers to take over America. I just hope we get a long interim where idealists reign before they succumb to the pleasures of power.

Arms vs. Tyranny

I found a comment on my facebook wall which reminded anyone who would read it that the 2nd Amendment was set up for a defense against tyrants. I replied to the comment that back when the Bill of Rights was written the Amendment dealt with muskets. I did not add that these are significantly less deadly than modern rifles with 30 bullet clips that can be squeezed off in 15 seconds or less.

Neither did I meantion that even during the era of Stalin plenty of rural Russians had guns for hunting.

Neither did I mention that President George Washington led troops into Western Pennsylvania with the Army of the United States to put down the “Whiskey Rebellion.” Presumably the targeted whiskey distillers had plenty of muskets.

Neither did I mention that for the first 200 years of our nation’s existence this amendment was always tied to the idea that personal arms to fend off “tyrants” were always presumed to be used in community-run militias.

Its also worth pondering whether even AR-15’s would be any match for an attacking communist hoard which was what gun rights warriors warned us against when I was a kid two decades before the communist menace all but vanished from the face of the Earth. Today such a threat is a Hollywood fantasy called Red Dawn with a 91% Rotten rating at Rotten Tomatoes.

It also turns out that there are many examples of high gun ownership in nations with plenty of tyranny and a few with almost no gun ownership that have managed to overthrow tyrannies without a blizzard of gun shops:

T]he country ranked last on the [Small Arms Survey] — with only 0.1 guns per 100 people — is Tunisia, which as you’ll recall was still able to overthrow a longtime dictator in 2011.

Best reading of the day

I thought it would be interesting to see what gun rights folks thought about LaPierre’s press conference today.

Googled gun rights blogs and found this “top 25”

The fourth one down the list “View from the Porch” had comments from readers. A lot of them panned LaPierre.

A couple of examples:

*I would be shocked — SHOCKED! — if Wayne ever figured out the difference between “pro-gun” and “republican.”

*”Do we think there would have been a message that wouldn’t have been ridiculed and ripped apart?”

Dude, this isn’t Democratic Underground. These are a bunch of wookie-suited Libertarians and conservative gun nuts.

If WE can see the flaws in this argument and the stumbling, halting, awkward way it was presented, what do you think it looks like to the OTHER side?

Standin’ by your man ain’t doin’ him no favors when what he needs is a rehab clinic.

*So… two questions

1) What’s your favorite non-NRA gun rights lobbying organization I can go become a member of?

2) What can we do to let NRA leadership publicly know that that response was a bunch idiotic bullshit we don’t agree with?

*TheSev said…
Great freedom organization ya got there Wayne.

The answer is more big Gov’t programs to solve a problem easily taken care of by the citizens.

Obviously Wayne has allies who embarassed by him and that gives me hope that he’ll be overruled and some sensible laws might be considered. BTW Wayne evidently claimed that there were 20,000 laws in the US to restrict gun use. I have no idea how many there are but one commentator laughed that off as an asinine exaggeration. I guess Wayne is a gun right’s hysteric.

The NRA needs more armed guards at their press conferences

I’m listening to the beginning of Wayne LaPierre’s press conference. It started with his hinting that we need as many armed guards at elementary schools as the President gets and even big public sporting events.

He wants the kind of national data base on the mentally ill that his organization has fought against accumulating on gun ownership.

Its video games that have caused all our problems. Unlike target practice with AR-15’s these unacceptable forms of recreation.

Its the media’s fault…….not the gun manufacturers. Who can protect us from mothers who buy six powerful guns from getting herself shot by her son and using her guns on children. The NRA’s push to arm teachers. That’s the solution.

A second heckler…….too bad the armed guards can’t protect Wayne. You’d think his press conference was another vulnerable kindergarten class.

Wayne is agonizing about the demonization of guns…….Remember “Guns don’t kill people. people kill people.”

Wayne’s solution sounds like its leaning toward that little Georgia city that passed an ordinance to require all its residents to own a gun.

Grover Norquist would crap in his pants if we raised the taxes to hire a hundred thousand more armed guards for the nations schools. Maybe not. Apparently he said Congressman Boener’s Plan B would be OK after all. Oh, except Norquist has got the Republican congressman paranoid that his Tea Party pals would bump them off in a primary that they wouldn’t support Boener.

Wayne wants “Blanket safety.” Let’s put a gun under the blanket of every child so that they can kill every monster that comes out of their closet to get them in the middle of the night.

So the NRA went off line to make sure it didn’t say anything stupid in the immediate aftermath of the Sandy Hook tragedy. Nice of him to wait a week before he said anythings stupid.

His hint at the beginning is just how he finished. More armed guards.