Tag Archives: gender

NRA Absurdists and Gun Proliferation in America: time to debate the Ninja Amendment?

This Sunday from 8-9am, Our Town and Revolution and Beer on Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCPT invite you to join us for the first real and honest debate on reasonable gun control, the Second Amendment and the proliferation of guns since the Newtown tragedy. Many are calling this issue a mental health issue and not a gun issue. On both the Left and the Right the rhetoric around the mental health issue has taken a dangerous, wrong-headed, uninformed and regressive tone. The debate over guns in general has taken a decidedly perverse turn.

In fact, within a week of the Newtown tragedy, the NRA’s long awaited statement, following an unusually long silence, was in a word, absurdist. Their answer to the tragedy was not reasonable gun legislation, or even reasonable gun debate and responsibility. The NRA, instead, as a way of prevention for the next Newtown or Columbine was more guns, forcibly armed and trained school teachers, or roving gun-toting guards for every one of the nations 138,900 schools. Militarize the schools!

It is an easy sell to a knee-jerk trained populace, particularly on the Right.A trained man with a gun would certainly have a deterrent effect on a would-be gunmen intent on mayhem, right? But the money-changing marketing on the Right, like the effort by the gun-lobby and the NRA to use these stories as a way to accumulate cash through fear, is flimsy at best. That’s why they have to shout at you, or cajole you through fear and hysteria or false sincerity constantly through the Glenn Becks, Rush Limbaughs or Mike Gallaghers in the media. That’s why they have consolidated and dominated fully their concentrated and fully one-sided message in the media. Drive, as I have done many times,through the south and you will be shocked at the proliferation of pro-Rightwing propaganda, and the absolute desert of unfiltered information.

But under any reasonable thought their absurdist ramblings of the Right and the NRA fall apart quickly. For example, who will pay for the 400,000 sainted and trusted armed guards for our schools who will be necessary to guard multiple entrances, recess, open and large campuses and the fat target of would-be gunmen of masses of kids going to and from buses? Or do we require all kids entering and leaving school straight to secured vehicles to serpentine to cover? All of those armed guards will need sick days, vacation days, mandated lunches and breaks, right? Who will pay that enormous bill? More taxes? Is the Right and NRA now arguing for greater taxation? What would the tea party say?

First and foremost, the ultimate flaw in logic with the gun pimps and absurdists deals with the gunmen themselves. Not a single school gunman has been stopped or brought down by police or anyone else with a gun. They usually kill themselves, or occasionally surrender. Always the would-be gunman comes prepared to shoot, often with greater firepower, more ammunition and body armor, whereas those who may confront them are always reacting.

Perhaps then we’ll simply engender an army of volunteers. Who will oversee and screen them? What if they don’t want to volunteer anymore or one day? Do we use the unemployed as free labor? How will they look for work on school/business days? Or maybe we arm teachers. Would we then require teachers to be armed? As part of teaching degrees would they be mandated to take firearms classes, and pack a weapon to every school and every class on everyday? I could make a joke about how well-behaved classes would suddenly become, but is that the reality and environment we want our children to learn in? Talk about a loss of innocence! 20 children died at Newtown. Does the arming of every school in America now victimize its 55 milliom-that’s million students? http://www.edreform.com/2012/04/k-12-facts/

So, in keeping with that, or in keeping up with the absurdity on the Right, I am proposing what I believe to be an equally workable, and perhaps even more practical solution to the gun issue: 900poundgorilla and Revolution and Beer propose THE NINJA AMENDMENT for school safety?ShinobiNoMono

Ninja’s are all privately funded, apparently. Never have I been at a job and said, “Hey Bob, what are you doing for the weekend?” only to hear, “I’m a part-time Ninja on the weekend.” So, it would seem, there would be no liability to taxpayers. A guard with a gun is also very apparent walking the halls of our schools, whereas a Ninja would drop unseen from a ceiling, burst from a locker or spring from a trash can above, behind or beside the gunman. A gunman could likely hear return gunfire and concentrate his heavier weaponry in hallways or stairwells with little or no cover. A swarm of silent Ninja stars could drop an assailant in the blink of an eye. And there are never costly funerals for Ninjas. Ninjas take care of their own. You’ll never hear a tearful relative at a ceremony lament, “I told Dave this whole Ninja life-style would catch up with him one day, but he just wouldn’t listen.”

Share this with friends, and ask them to send this post to your Congressman and Senator in Washington, the NRA, President Obama and Vice President with a respectful demand to sponsor the Ninja Amendment if they insist on the absurdist course Washington, the Media and the NRA are currently on with regards to guns and our children.

Contact the NRA: https://contact.nra.org/contact-us.aspx, and call, 1-800-672-3888

Contact your House Representative: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

Contact your Senator: http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

Email President Obama here: http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/fellows/contact

Contact Vice President Biden: http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact-vp

Stay tuned for the exact wording for the proposed NINJA AMENDMENT.ninjacatva11

Listen to 900poundgorilla every Sunday morning 8-9 on Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCPT am820 and streaming live worldwide for the Revolution and Beer show only on Our Town with Mike Sanders.
Catch the beer of the week review with 900poundgorilla’s WC Turck and Brian Murray each Sunday 8-9am only on Our Town, at Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCPT AM and FM, and streaming online. Friend us on Facebook  at Revolution and Beer. And find all of the great beers we review each week at Louis Glunz Beer Inc., http://www.glunzbeers.com. And check out their fine beer glasswear selections  at the “Beerables” link  at the bottom of their page. 


Gender and Revolution: The World from the Outside

I grew up in small towns in the 60s and 70s. There were four types of people. There were boys and girls, which could then be safely and neatly subdivided down into kids and adults. You were a kid until the age of 16, when you could legally drive and hold a part-time job. From 16 to 18, you were kid-ish, until the time you could order a beer, vote and join the military. From that magic stroke of midnight on your eighteenth birthday, a literal blink of an eye, where only a second before midnight you were legally a child, you became an adult.

Somewhere, during those seemingly formative and all too confusing and frustrating adolescent and teen years we take agency in the further sub-divisions of the assumed realities of our lives and our world; Race, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexuality, gender.

Where, as young children we were cloaked in the paradigms of our parents, or the principle adults in our lives, we begin to fashion or challenge those paradigms to fit our perception of reality. We either reject, redefine or redouble those assumptions and paradigms. No small part of that is the rigidity of culture and society, channeling us into a larger paradigm. The constructs of culture and society provides necessary structure, but it can also be a trap. And whether you are an ardent defender of the unwaivering status quo or a radical revolutionary we struggle against  our own innately limited perspectives.

I am no different. I have, and continue to struggle with my own perspective of the world. I do battle daily with assumptions and prejudices that seem to out-pace my desire for better perspective and understanding. In my defense, I have learn to stop mid-judgment and scrutinize my ignorance, tearing  at issues from every conceivable angle, often out loud in the car driving my wife to work in the morning before she has had her coffee.

“How are you that awake?” she frowns. “I can’t think until I’ve had my coffee.” 

On tomorrow’s show our guest will be Rebecca Kling, a trans-gender woman, whose autobiographical book, No Gender Left Behind, http://www.rebeccakling.com/ is one of the bravest and most honest books I’ve read. Our show is called Revolution…Revolution and Beer. But what do the experiences of  a trans-gendered woman have to do with community activism and revolution? It is a valid question, at least within the narrowest constructs and assumptions of society and gender.

First, revolution, at least the positive revolution that preserves and defends individual human rights and dignity, in a sustainable system is not possible without properly enfranchising and including all people in that communal definition of freedom and dignity. And second, no innovative and lasting change is possible without gaining the power to intelligently and sensitively deconstruct the conventions, assumptions and constructs of society, religion, economics, sexuality and gender.

Rebecca is a dear friend, and we have worked together in the theater, but I have lots of friends, all of them far more brilliant than I, but I don’t have all of them on the show. I found something critically important both within and behind Rebecca’s story that I thought merited a greater discussion. That is that gender is fundamental to each person’s identity. The scope and temper of that identity is profoundly imposed by society around us, but also from within us. All too often people stop at their own perspective on gender as defined by their individual reality, and the influence of society around them. The essence of positive change and lasting dignity-based revolution is about shattering all of that.

Reality is a potentially dangerous trap. Whose reality is being defined, and from what perspective? Philosophically there may be absolute realities, but we may never, as sovereign and autonomous, and separated beings, ever truly comprehend absolute realities. Our reality is our own, and ends at the limits of our bodies. It is when we recognize that limitation, and accept the perception of reality for others that we begin to collect shared realities. And that, I hold firmly is the cornerstone of a truly dignity-centered community, and the beginning point for lasting and a sustainable peaceful and positive revolution that humanity so badly needs right now.  

Catch 900poundgorilla’s WC Turck with Brian Murray and the whole Our Town gang every Sunday 8-9am on Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCTP during the Revolution and Beer segment, and find out more about all of the great craft Beers we feature by googling Louis Glunz Beer, Inc. Like us on Facebook at Revolution and Beer, or subscribe for free to 900poundgorilla.wordpress.com.

https://900poundgorilla.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/revolution-and-beer-of-the-week-st-bernardus-abt-12-and-the-art-of-the-journey/

 


Outrage! How Congress failed millions of victimized women, but saved Hurricane Sandy relief

There was outrage this week when  House Speaker  and Republicans refused to pass a relief bill for  a few tens of  thousands of legitimately suffering Hurricane Sandy victims. There arose such a cry in the media, from Democrats  and Republicans alike, and from New Jersey Governor Chris Christie that the 112th Congress, at their 11th hour passed that desperately critical bill.

A few tens of thousands of Americans. It was that urgent. If they hadn’t acted the bill would have died, likely not to be taken up by the incoming 113th Congress. But this Congress managed to get the job done, amid their busy schedules of lobbyist luncheons, all important Benghazi hearings and FOX News/MSNBC partisan mud-slinging interviews. Another bill died, forgotten in the shadows. The Violence Against Women Act was held up, gutted and then left to die.  Luckily the loss of VAWA bill only affected the lives and well-being of roughly 170 million women in this country. There was no similar outrage, and hardly a whisper of acknowledgement for the death of the Violence Against Women Act, or VAWA.

VAWA, credited as being born on the desk of then Delaware Senator Joe Biden in 1994, was actually bred from a history of abuse and brutality against women; the silent civil rights struggle. Signed into effect that same year by Bill Clinton, the bill provided vitally needed resources for abuse victims and began a process of calling attention to the special nature of crimes of violence against women, such as date rape, honor killings, female genital mutilation, human trafficking, sexual slavery, forced abortion, forced prostitution and marital rape, to name a few.

No doubt it was about cost, right? We are, according to the doomsayers, sliding off the cliff into the fiscal abyss. The nation can’t afford the less than 2 billion allotted annually for a project that does little more than save women’s lives. It had to be cut for the sake of the nation. The cost of the sandy relief: 60 billion, to start. It is easy to see the how Congress arrived  at their decision.

In fairness, this is  not about the Sandy victims, or the 72,000 homes and businesses destroyed by the storm. This is about perspective and priorities. This is about whether we are sincere about improving the lives of women, and about offering support to the 1 in 6 women who will be sexually assaulted or molested in this country. Every 9 seconds a woman in the US is assaulted or beaten, or around 21 in the time it takes to read this article. Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women in the US, ahead of  car accidents, rape by a stranger or street crime combined. 2/3s of women abused at home do not contact shelters or police for help. In financial terms, the cost of abuse is more than $4 billion in medical costs, and nearly $2 billion in productivity at work. (Source: http://domesticviolencestatistics.org/domestic-violence-statistics/)

Given that, the math should be relatively simple to figure out. I surprised Congress has not figured it out since they are among our best and brightest, at least what they would have us believe.

ACT NOW

Sunday on the show we’ll talk about this with Aisha Chaudhri from Apna Ghar http://apnaghar.org/, which “provides holistic services to women and children across immigrant communities in the Chicago area to end the cycle of domestic violence.  Apna Ghar empowers women to be self-sufficient by a full spectrum of services from education to emergency and transitional housing to counseling and legal services.”

On the show we’ll have details on becoming involved in reviving VAWA and protecting women. begin by organizing to become the squeakiest wheel you can become. Call and respectfully pester your Representative and Senators at the following, with their phone numbers here:

http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

http://www.house.gov/representatives/

Or call or email President Obama and tell him how important this is, and that we hold him and his presidential reputation and historical legacy accountable:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/submit-questions-and-comments

202-465-1414 and 202-456-1111.

If you are being abused, or know someone who may be:

www.apnaghar.org

www.rapevictimadvocates.org

www.4vawa.org

The woman,, relative, friend. mother, daughter and wife in life are counting on you.

Tune in every Sunday 8-9am only on Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCPT for the Revolution and Beer segment as Brian Murray and I sample the beer of the week with the Our Town gang, and run down the grassroots calendar for the week. If you’re tired of talk, talk, talk radio, this is do something radio. Have a beer. Get involved.

 Catch the beer of the week review with 900poundgorilla’s WC Turck and Brian Murray each Sunday 8-9am only on Our Town, at Chicago’s Progressive Talk, WCPT AM and FM, and streaming online. Friend us on Facebook  at Revolution and Beer. And find all of the great beers we review each week at Louis Glunz Beer Inc., www.glunzbeers.com. And check out their fine beer glasswear selections  at the “Beerables” link  at the bottom of their page.  


Sometimes being at any way associated with the male gender is shameful…

Sometimes being associated with the male gender is a shameful experience. Ladies, at least you have  a choice,  for the other half of the population, it can be hell being stuck in this body. It seems like that feeling is happening more and more lately, from ridiculous statements from Missouri Senate candidates, to male crafted legislation to harass and violate women’s bodies, sometimes I wish there was a reasonable way to trade in my, shall I say, male apparatus.

Here is an AP  story from Santa Ana, California that adds further weight to the damn-near overwhelming argument against male assertions of being the “dominant” sex.

“Superior Court Judge Derek Johnson said if someone doesn’t want sexual intercourse, the body “will not permit that to happen…saying a rape victim didn’t put up a fight during her assault…The case involved a man who threatened to mutilate the face and genitals of his ex-girlfriend with a heated screwdriver before committing rape, forced oral copulation, and other crimes.”

When I was twelve I got pulled into this Evangelical fright fest, in which adults outright attempted to terrify children into their cult with outlandish tales about everything from how girls cutting their hair, to sex, drinking and dancing would put us on a path to the flesh burning eternally and painfully from our bodies in the soul-crushing pits of hell. I was already very into girls at that point, something that didn’t go unnoticed when I buddied up to a cute and also stunned girl in this little shop of biblical horrors. I was told by this almost outraged, red-faced evangio-path, “you know what girls have down there? Teeth that will bite your thing right off! And you know who controls those teeth? The lord! And you can’t hide from the Lord, either of you. He’s sees all!”

Needless to say, in appreciation for my parents, I knew this guy was a little off his rocker, but it did  start souring me to organized religion, and taught me that men come to fundamentalist religion-every religion-the same way men come to sex, with this deeply internalized and barely contained sense of rage and anger that is sometimes obsessive and not  at all healthy to the women and physical partners in their life. It comes  with this weird power that some men feel they must assert like a grenade, erupting in whatever direction it can. If a man feels trapped in a box, or crushed in powerlessness there seems  that tendency to pass their powerlessness to those  he feels are weaker in the most manipulative and abusive ways. And to be clear, I am not talking about all men, but it does reside in all of us to some degree. And guys, if you deny it, you are either kidding yourself, have not analyzed deep enough or are B.S.-ing the rest of us. 

So thank you to Judge Johnson for finally confirming what medical silence, and my experience with women through the years was unable to confirm. You’ve found the female jaws of chastity. Well done, you thick-skulled, cave-man throwback, you flaw of Darwinism and anti-evolutionary exclamation point.  

More from the AP  story:

“The California Commission on Judicial Performance issued a report Thursday saying Superior Court Judge Derek Johnson’s comments were inappropriate and a breach of judicial ethics. Johnson is a former prosecutor in the Orange County district attorney’s sex crimes unit.

Johnson issued some flimsy apology, saying that he was frustrated,  but curiously did not retract, correct or amend his original  statement. But I just want to apologize on behalf of men who try, despite the male body, and a far too hormone driven mentality, to at least attempt at something akin to progressive non-gender centered thought. And to god or who ever designed things this way, any place I can turn these things in, and no, it has nothing to do with that teeth thing!


A LIBERAL CALLS OUT MSNBC: Moving the ball forward for the Right on election campaign reform

Generally, I enjoy Chris Hayes weekends on MSNBC, but I constantly must remind myself that Mr. Hayes, Ed Schultz, Rachel Maddow and the rest of their line-up are still part of the problem of corporate and power-elite-status-quo control of the discourse and messaging of critical national issues. While MSNBC is routinely “demonized” by FOX and pundits on the Right as far Left wing, it is not-by a long shot.

To support that, I point to the “buy American” push, particularly by Ed Schultz. Recall, this was a rightwing and nationalist mantra following NAFTA. Just as they did in the lead up to Iraq, MSNBC, for all their Liberal bent has missed the real solution to jobs in America and the necessary equitible trade worldwide, and that is not some pseudo-Ron Paul-esque economic isolationism, but forcing international corporations to adhere to wage and safety and pollution reforms regardless of where they are. If GE-owned MSNBC was truly as Liberal as the Right asserts, they would recognize first that mankind is global, and globalization was the direction of the species from those first steps from an African Valley 2 million years ago.

What prompted this article was a roundtable discussion on Chris Hayes’ Sunday morning show about the 2009 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling that allows Corporations, and Unions, to spend unlimited amounts of money to promote candidates and policy, effectively erasing the one man one vote cornerstone of our democracy by overwhelming free discourse through propaganda and false messaging.http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/08-205.ZS.html
With a decptively benign name like Citizens United, the group is in fact a filthy little cabal of Republican hacks in the vein of Andrew Breitbart, with a bias towards editing for innuendo over fact and truth. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citizens_United_(organization)

That’s the background, but on this morning’s show Mr. Hayes had Jack Abramoff, the convicted lobbyist who was unequivical in saying that overturning Citizens United would never happen, because it is fundamental to Conservatives in this country. The statement went virtually unchallenged. Aside the traitorous acts committed by Mr. Abramoff, which did immeasurable damage to this democracy, why would MSNBC legitimize such a character? Because, at the heart of MSNBC is a large mult-national corporation, with significant interests in issues ner and dear to the true powers in this nation (Hint: It isn’t Right, Left, Libertarian or even American).

The Corporate media is overt and subversive alike in its crafting and molding of cultures and nations. It does so to create markets as to define and secure them.

Advertising creates ideals, standards and affirms stereotypes on one hand, while the media carries and promotes those messages. The recent purchase of The Weather Channel by NBC Universal, Bain Capital and The Blackstone Group highlights the effort of Multi-national Corporations and firms to devour media outlets and control what Americans sees, hears, discusses and votes upon. Blackstone bought Neilsen-the rating people in 2006 along with other partners like the Carlyle Group. Bain, by the way is owned by Mitt Romney, and owns Clear Channel, the largest owner of radio stations in the country. Its “news” talk format is 90% rightwing, with Beck, Savage, Limbaugh and Hannity leading that charge, despite that 90% of the country does not vote Republican. Bain also owns or invests in AMC Entertainment and Warner Music group.

So there is real pressure, and undeniable evidence that Liberal MSNBC is hardly a Liberal thinktank, but instead has slipped into a market not served blatantly by FOX as a means, not to promote Progressive ideals, but as a means, as prescribed by their corporate owners, to nudge the message forward far more subtley that FOX can do. But the effort is the same, and in the end it comes down to control-not politics.

The strategy is to create paradigms not cultures, as paradigms become absolute realities that are much harder to find alternatives to or see beyond. Imagine what it would be to breath fire, or breathe watter as a means of survival, and that air and wind could be as deadly as we find those others. Those are other paradigms. That is what corporations are evolving to in a greater and greater consolidation of power and influence. Think back over the last 50 or 100 years about where corporations were and where they are today, with interlocking partnerships and boards, and their ascent to controlling almost fully govenments worldwide.

Now imagine this paradigm. With all that power to control the message and assert culture, a group of people have challenged that by Occupy parks have the power elite absolutely terrified. Now that is a message!


Occupy My Heart: The radio Show on Best of the Left

The Play that made national headlines, changed hearts and energized a movement is now available on Best of the Left at the link below:

 
Filled with heart and truth, Occupy My Heart: A revolutionary Christmas Carol is not just a story for the holidays, but a tale of our times. You will be touched in this modern retelling of the Dickens classic.

Please share it with your friends, especially those who still think the struggle of our times is not the co-opting of our great nation by corporate and financial greed.


Art, Occupy and the Illusions of the One Percent

Achievers. The one percent. Winners. Those who are so adamant about not raising taxes on corporations the wealthiest in the nation would have us believe that there is some inherent quality, something unique and sacrosanct in this supposed talent. Set aside the responsibility to the nation fostering a nurturing environment for business(political and social stability, laws, courts, infrastructure, an educated and healthy populace) argument. Talents are for the arts, or sports, for positive intellect and in healthy and uplifting relationships. 

No man is an Iland, intire of it selfe;” wrote John Donne in meditations XVII, in 1624, “every man is a peece of the Continent, a part of the maine; if a Clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as well as if a Mannor of thy friends or of thine owne were; any mans death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankinde; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee.”

Achiever is in itself an insult hurled at the rest of us by the selfish and greedy. It implies that the jobs we go to daily, the place we’ve arrived at in life is not an achievement. It screams that raising children, running a home, going to school, struggling with poverty, prevailing through an illness is somehow a lesser achievement. It presumes one person’s experience is greater than another’s. It pits one person’s struggle against another’s, which is a fool’s game.

Reverend Billy at the Occupy Chicago General Assembly Wednesday evening spoke about community and the responsibility of the 1%. One is indeed the loneliest number

The way it is used becomes an assertion of power and right and privilege. Their achievement is presumed to have value above all others. It is an assumption of rule and of a ruling class, which is antithetical to the declaration of Independence and of the Constitution.

It also betrays a lie the so-called achievers pretend to themselves. It is the ultimate lie because it ignores the very thing Donne wrote about. Life is impossible alone. A soul alone writing a novel relies upon the history making the computer usable, upon the society nurturing freedom of thought, of the luxury of not having to forage through the day for food, shelter and sustenance, and even of the craftsman who constructed the desk and chair upon which that novelist writes.

A month ago I wrote a play. I am proud of that play, but as such it is little more than a semi-interesting collection of two dimension words upon a page. In the coming weeks a passionate and talented cast will bring those words to life, moving them around in three-dimensional space, adding inflection and history and textures I would never have imagined. We will perform on a radio station, the play expanded and re-envisioned  by a producer who will add sound effects to create a new and as yet unrealized world. We will perform upon a stage built by dreamers who wished for a space that actors might create as yet unimagined works and as yet unwritten words. Those stages are maintained by electricians, lighting experts and others who make each performance possible.

Sadly, what has happened in America is that the one percent has all but convinced us that only the writer matters, and that all the rest should bow before them. The Occupy movement asserts a different reality, one consistent with the constitution, in which all citizens are imbued with a god-given dignity and that all of us have a responsibility to maintaining the greatest measure of human dignity that can be maintained. The limit placed on that dignity is a measure of the cynicism inherent in a heart.

No man is indeed an island, except in his own heart, and upon that island is loneliness and nothing more. There is an old pop song that says one is the loneliest number. If there is salvation from that loneliness, it must be among the 99%.


November 17, 2011 Day of Action…Occupy your freedom! Join a march. Organize. Put a sign in your car and in your window saying, “I am part of the 99%.” Call your senators, representatives. Flood radio stations with calls. Join a Credit Union. Let them know this is a country of, by and for the people, not the corporations and banks. And above all be outraged, but with love and peace and respect as your weapons and armor.


The essence of the argument. occupation as a defense

The New York judge that ruled on yesterday’s assault against the Occupy Wall Street activists in Zuccotti Park commented that the protesters, “have not demonstrated a first amendment right to remain in Zuccotti Park, along with their tents, structures, generators and other installations.” Judge Stallman ruled. “Neither have the applicants shown a right to a temporary restraining order that would restrict the city’s enforcement of law so as to promote public health and safety.”

The comment begs the question as to whether the judge simply refused to adequately acknowledge the basic First Amendment aspect in this case, or the legal representatives for the movement failed to properly define the unique characteristics of the movement. Based upon the judge’s statement, the latter seems the obvious choice, at which point we can only wonder if the Occupy lawyers had the opportunity to make that distinction or if the judge refused to allow it.Occupation Chicago activists at a General Assembly meeting Sunday

The protesters, “have not demonstrated a first amendment right to remain in Zuccotti Park, along with their tents, structures, generators and other installations,” said Stallman. But taken at face value his opinion is fundamentally flawed, an opening the Occupy people should and need to exploit fully. Their premiere argument lies in their name: Occupy. Occupation is not defined as a brief and transient effort, but as a sustained effort whose duration is dictated, again by definition, by the occupiers. Evidence the Right who eschewed any suggestion of leaving Iraq or Afghanistan over the last decade as cutting and running, and certainly not the decision of anyone but the United States to make.

Their First Amendment right to remain is explicit in their name. otherwise we can refer to them as, sy, “Just passing through Wall Street,” or “Fed up folks visiting Wall Street, but not lingering,” or “Let’s go to Wall Street but definitely not stay.” Instead, they are “Occupy Wall Street.” The name defines the movement. It prescribes the action and the place it will occupy. The name is the First Amendment assertion of the movement.

The structures, tents, kitchens, hospitals and library are likewise equally fundamental to the movement and directly support the intent of the protest by means of maintaining safe and healthy conditions within the camp. That speaks directly to Stallman’s statement that “the applicants (have not) shown a right to a temporary restraining order that would restrict the city’s enforcement of law so as to promote public health and safety.” The protesters have not constructed a shanty town, but erected tents, explicitly to protect their members from the elements, and to facilitate an adequate presence to maintain an occupation. The hospital is staffed by registered nurses, who have donated their energies to the cause.

Truck driver Bob Hoffman donates time to serve soup for Occupy protesters

Curious that police attempts to disrupt and discourage the protest through unprovoked violence (see  https://900poundgorilla.wordpress.com/2011/11/07/attacks-and-intimidation-the-war-against-the-occupy-movement/  ) and the dumping of unsavory elements into the park were not presented in this case. The hyped and exaggerated incidence of crime, ballooned by outright falsifications and concoctions were used against the protesters and ruled on by the court, but the best defense remains in the name. By definition, Occupation is the essence of the argument.

Now the question that remains, if it is still possible to prevail on the strength of an argument or if the courts hear only their preconceptions and biases, or if they hear only what they are told to hear? More and more the courts are the tools of the wealthy, the corporations and powerful, rarely favoring indiviuals. Indeed, through the so-called financil collapse of 2007-2008 not a single person was indicted or arrested. Tens of billions were quite literally stolen by banks, financial instutions and corporations, either directly from the treasury or by draining 401K plans and pensions, all while the rich have grown obscenely wealthier. Yet, Occupying a park over outrage for those immoral and anti-American offenses by civilians demanding justice and reform is met by media indifference, partisan propaganda and riot police. Anyone see the insanity in all that?


Anger rages as Paterno fired; The misplaced fury of tribalism and hypocrisy of the Corporate media: A comment and rebuttal

  Thinker Belle commented on Anger rages as Paterno fired; The misplaced fury of tribalism and hypocrisy of the Corporate media

Americans like having it in plain old black and white-your team or mine. These students are clearly disgusted with the way the media handled this “issue.” Mostly male, like their football coaches, it would seem to be more important to win a game, stick together as a team, regardless of the injuries inflicted upon the opposing team-the children this guy raped.

The Occupy crowd has no leader-coach, per se- so there is no “big wig” or person of idolization to bring down. It would be easy to compare them to communist since they vandalize the small businesses near their encampment and terrorize those that do not provide free food and water sources for bathing and using the restroom.

It must be pretty bad when even Berkley doesn’t want them on their campus.

 Thank you for the response, but your opening paragraph precisely made my point about tribalism. Indeed, that is the very definition of tribalism. I have always acted independently, my supreme bias being a morality that defends human dignity and individual freedom, a freedom again measured by the standard of human dignity. Maybe I’m on a different track, but I have never been a follower. It has gotten me into scrapes with some of the largest corporations on the planet(against which I always prevailed), and I always go to sleep with a clear conscience. Furthermore, I am always consistent in my positions, and never have to face the possibility of flip-flopping on issues.

 As for the protests, they have resisted a leader which could co-opt their message-and there is one even if some refuse to hear it- and spin it into watered down or subverted politics. The incidence you’ve referred to are FOX-news generated, hyped or distorted. I can speak for the Chicago group, which I visit each day, especially since they are near my office. There is a culture of respect and dignity and honesty the likes of which I have never seen, and I have been a part of many protests, from pro-democracy in China rallies to anti-war and pro-Union rallies at the Madison Wisconsin statehouse.

 For those incidence that have occurred, as in the sexual assault in New York, the police bear a significant responsibility, as they were rounding up homeless people and others and depositing them among the protesters as a tactic to disrupt constitutionally rights. Taken in total, the very small number of actual incidence is still far, far lower than the society at large. Drug use and alcohol use is discouraged, but there are not security gangs patrolling the protests. It is an honor system, largely, and people are people, and the movement has attracted a broad menu of people. At a general assembly meeting last night in Chicago I met with an attorney, 2 DePaul graduate students, a grandmother and a Teamster, working three jobs but coming each Sunday to serve soup as his contribution.

 The best advice I can offer is, stop accepting the fear and siege mentality of the corporate media, which plays to niche markets and base impulses as the vehicle to sell their crap. Too many people buy the marketing tactic that the world is spiraling out of control. Maybe look a bit closer at people whose energies are spent in the defense of individual human liberty-above even capitalism and who are engaged in making it a better place for people first. Truly, wouldn’t it stand to reason that if the world values people first, business would likewise benefit. Instead, the corporate controlled media would have us believe that business is a giant benevolent and monolithic cow whose teat we all endeavor to suck from.

 And one last note. While Communism was a failed economic system which essentially devoured itself, which is what capitalism is doing right now, crime was, comparatively to American crime, almost non-existent. Having spent much time in Eastern and southern Europe just after the Berlin Wall came down, those societies were quite safe. Indeed, the so-called worst parts of cities like Bratislava, Budapest and Belgrade where far safer than the best parts of Chicago, New York and Dallas.

 Finally, it is interesting the use of Berkley as a pejorative. The penchant for tribalism also promotes antipathy for intellectualism and knowledge, evidenced by the constant assault against education, attacks on professors, teachers unions and public schools by way of vouchers, the home-schooling fad and the promotion of creationism in curricula. The result is creating a dangerous malleable and disastrously gullible populace. That will work for the purveyors of fear and paranoia and hate and selfishness for a time, but is unstable and unsustainable in a society, and whose eventual collapse or backlash is potentially fatal to this also potentially great country we’d all like to see prevail.  

 


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