Day by Day

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

What Is a Racist?

What is a racist? Good question. The definitions of racism and the use of the term have grown over time. It once was rather simple - one who believed that his race was superior to another's.

Most often, and in the conventional wisdom, this was used in terms of whites who believed that blacks were inferior - based upon their race alone.

It could be used in terms of other cultures, too... for example, Japanese have long felt a superiority toward gaijin.

But now, it's a word that it thrown wildly about, and through PC, it quickly silences the opposition. It's a power word.

So, what IS a racist? We have a definition from the University of Delaware. Through their residential life program, they have given us this: “[a] racist is one who is both privileged and socialized on the basis of race by a white supremacist (racist) system. The term applies to all white people (i.e., people of European descent) living in the United States, regardless of class, gender, religion, culture or sexuality.”

Lovely. It's like the concept of predestination. Apparently, all whites are racists... no matter what your thoughts, your beliefs, your life choices, or anything. You're doomed to the damnation of your racist attitudes.

Anyone else see the problem with this viewpoint? First, if you lump everyone into the racist category, then even those who aren't racists (contrary to the theory, but let's assume it's possible) may succumb to the inevitableness of their inherent racistness.

Second, why bother attempting to reform? Hey, you're already damned to be a racist... why try to reform? You're doomed. There's a chance some will revel in their inevitable racistness. Uh oh.

Third, can no one else be racist? The theory doesn't truly address this... Can we doom other races to inherent and inevitable racism?

And, lastly, isn't the concept of classify an entire race as being deficient... racism?

Victory for Decency / Defeat for Freedom of Speech

I'll admit to being torn on this. It would seem like such an easy decision.

We've all (sadly) become familiar with "Reverend" Fred Phelps and the members of his Westboro Baptist Church, many of whom happen to be his family as well. They have a tendency to show up at funerals for Soldiers (and other servicemembers) and to loudly protest the funeral. Their basis of reasoning is that homosexuality is a sin, and the military endorses homosexuality through "Don't Ask, Don't Tell". Therefore, God is mad at the US and supports the killing of the Soldiers.

(If I got that wrong, please correct me.)

Understandably, these actions really tick off grieving family members. I know I would have been livid.

Well, one father of a slain Marine (Semper Fi, Marine!) sued the good reverend and his church for damages for protesting at his son's funeral. And from these (and here) news stories, a jury has awarded the father nearly $11 million in damages.

Will they collect? Not likely. But, it's a good victory.

Or... is it?

I've always said that freedom of speech, true freedom, means to support and defend the right of someone to stand on a street corner, and to shout at the top of their lungs, the very beliefs that you find most abhorrent to your own.

And that is precisely what Westboro Baptist Church does. They stand in public places, stand on the flag, or other such desecrations, and shout obscenities about how "God loves dead Soldiers" and things like that... at the funeral for the Soldier.

Makes my blood boil. Yours?

Good. It should.

What they do is a demonstration, in perhaps its coarsest, vile form, of precisely what our country stands for, and what our Soldiers fight for... the true vitality of that First Amendment we hold so dear.

I can't endorse what they say... it makes me ill. However, I will fight to the death for their right to say it. Or, what's the point of it all?

Monday, October 29, 2007

My Thoughts on a Few Issues

Tis the season for politics. So, why not share where I stand on a few points of interest?

I classify myself as Libertarian, but I refuse to join the Libertarian Party. Why not? Because, they refuse to support the effort to stop the Islamofascists, at least, not until they come directly to our shores.


I am a supporter of the FairTax. Do you realize that the budge allocation in the 2008 Budget Proposal for the Internal Revenue Service is over eleven billion dollars!? That means that the service that manages our ever convoluted tax code has to take in eleven billion dollars before a single penny goes to any other part of the government... like the Army, or roads, the CDC, or what have you... That's INSANE. Take a look at the FairTax... and study it. It's a very valid proposal, and for starters, we can save approximately eleven billion dollars.

Amendment X

I'm a strong believer in the Constitution. It's the roadmap to our government and our country, and I'm willing to bet that most people are only sketchilly familiar with it. Are you? Take a look here for the whole thing.
Amendment X is a special one though. It's designed to limit the role of the Federal government. We all hear about the government being too big, having grown larger, or the famous quote, "The era of Big Government is over." Candidates campaign on the issue all the time. But, did you know that the Bill of Rights already has taken care of the issue... if we merely held our government to the fire? Amendment X reads "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people."
How about that? It limits the powers and growth of the government right there. Let's get back to that, shall we?

Term Limits

Unnecessary. What we should be asking for are informed voters with spines. Every two years, we as Americans are given the opportunity to completely replace the ENTIRE House of Representatives and a third of the United States Senate. Term limits are offered right there. Don't like your representative? Vote him/her out. Instant term limits.


Not the Iraqi theater or the Global War (World War IV, as some call it). No, war in general. The last time our country declared war was World War II. Since then, we've committed our forces numerous times (Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Somalia, Desert Storm, OEF, OIF, Cambodia, Laos, and that's just the Top 10). All without a declaration of war.

It seems such a triviality, but... declaring war shows a level of committment. That the Country is formally determined to defeat an enemy. Why don't we do this anymore? We declare war on poverty, hunger, AIDS, drugs, crime, what have you... but actually declare a military war? Nah, no guts for that.


Abolish the Department of Education. $58 billion. And we're still slipping... Return control of schools to the local communities. Who better to know how to teach the local kidlets? The local parents. That's where the funding comes from... and the kids... and the values. Imagine the drive to ensure your community has good schools if it's truly up to the community.


Legalize them. Yep, I know, lost a lot of folks right there. We've been told how evil drugs are. And, in truth, they do some nasty things to people. But, it's their choice. But, SCEagle, what about what an intoxicated person does? Well, do we not already HAVE laws? Person is high and drives their car and kills someone. We HAVE a law against killing someone. Vehicular homicide, for instance. Also DWI. But, if you want to sit in your home and get high... go for it. Prohibition didn't work... why do we expect a different result with a "war" on drugs? By the way, DEA = $1.8 billion.


We need to increase our spending here. Obviously, we have quite an enemy right now, and we are stretching our resources to the bone. Let's get serious about this, shall we? Nuff said.


Personal opinions aside, why do we feel that one law can fit a nation of over 300 million people, of such diversity (hey, I've paid attention in my diversity classes) spread out over such a large area...? Each of our states is more in tune for the people in that area... If Rhode Island's populace votes for full abortion, then that's what they decide; and if New Mexico says no, then no there. Yes, it's a patchwork. But that's how it SHOULD be. Each state is different, each population different, and the laws should reflect those folks' wishes and intents.


There are way too many federal offenses. How often do we hear that a citizen was arrested on local charges, acquitted, and now the feds are pursuing the same charges, but on a federal level? Sure, there are crimes at the federal level - treason, for one. Kidnapping (across state lines) would be another. But this is ridiculous. Let's trim it back down. If it's a local crime, then leave it local.


No, I'm not apologizing for something. It's done way too often. Every time someone ruffles someone else's feathers, there are vocal demands for an apology. And soon, a well-worded, carefully crafted apology is trotted out. We're even apologizing for actions by now dead people against other now dead people. Huh? An apology made by someone who was not at all responsible carries weight? Pah. Apologies are becoming worthless because they're so overused. Stop it! An apology is most sincere when it's offered, not when it's demanded.

Health Care

We're serious? We're actually saying that because our own health care is not a priority to us, we expect the whole country to take care of it? Because the government has shown such success with every other public welfare priority.
And the idea that people don't have health care... pah. First, anyone can go to the emergency room for an emergency. Also, for the poor, truly poor, we have MedicAid. For seniors, MediCare...

For the rest of us... health care is like anything else. I'd like a bigger house. Should the country buy it for me? No. I'd like a nicer car? Same question. Now, for me personally, health care is free. And folks, let me assure you, while it's nice to not pay anything, the bureaucracy and quality can be nightmarish. We DO NOT WANT THIS nationwide. Don't believe me? Enlist... try it out. We either make health care a priority in our lives or not. We buy the health care that we can afford and that we feel is appropriate. That's how it should be.


What we're really discussing is Illegal Immigration. It's illegal. Thus, the name. So, what's the question?

These are just a few of my thoughts and positions... more to come later.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Reading List Suggestion

Quick... can you name some of the last politically correct groups to make fun of?

Women? Pshaw... come on, you know better.

_______________ - Americans? Nuh-uh. It doesn't matter which hyphenated group it is, there's an advocacy group to ensure that no sense of humor of any kind may be applied towards that group, at least, not without proper and prior screening, focus groups, and test subjects.

Oh, I know... the homose... nah, let's not even consider that.

Give up? Well, of course there's obese Americans. They are ok. Men in general are ok, after all, pick any commercial on tv. And sitcoms. And movies. Well, you get the idea.

And let's not forget one of the most enduring groups - Southerners! (You can just hear the hissing.)

Southerners are dumb. Right?
Southerners are uneducated. Dolts.
Southerners are throwbacks, still fighting the Civil War Between the States, aren't they?
Southerners... don't they realize the deal with that flag?
Southerners all have guns! And we know what type of people use guns.

That is the prevailing view. We all are familiar with it. If you look deep into our eyes (behind the mirrored sunglasses), you'd see the familiarity with this stereotype.

Yet, the truth is out there. I'd like to recommend this article for your perusal.

Quit stonewallin', and go take a peek.