• A Microaggression Over a Microbrew.

  • Should Americans Have Faith in the Federal Justice System?

  • Judge Rules Citizens Have No Right to a Vote to Ban Heroin Sanctuaries.

  • Charlottesville and Durham and Hate… Against Cops!

    Two recent news stories bring up some observations regarding the public’s view of law enforcement. First, the repulsive white supremacists—Nazis and KKK in Charlottesville, VA. and second, the nearly as repugnant radical, leftist agitators in Durham, N.C., including, the radical leftists Workers World Party, Democratic Socialists of America, and ANTIFA (anti-First Amendment… oh, I mean anti-fascists—yeah, right!).

     

    Much derision has been heaped on the cops’ handling (or not handling) of the riots in Charlottesville, which resulted in the tragic death of a young woman at the hands of a mob of despicable white nationalists.

     

    Even some conservative commentators are critical of the cops for not intervening in the violence. People need to remember something: it’s not the cops on the riot lines who decide when to act. Those officers were no doubt fighting with every molecule of their beings to tamp down the instinct to act. Police officers at potentially violent scenes like this, planned controversial events, are most often given orders for conduct and rules of engagement before being deployed. If officers are not acting to stop rioters, it’s because politically-driven superiors have ordered them not to act. I know it happens in Seattle, too—a lot. 

     

    In Durham, the cops also “failed” to act when protesters took it upon themselves to destroy public property and tear down a Confederate monument. Now, I have no love lost for the Confederacy that fought to preserve the vile institution of slavery. Think about it. I’m a libertarian! I believe in the sovereignty of every individual human being. In America, just because some piece of property offends you, you don’t get to destroy it.

     

    For example, in Baltimore, authorities removed Confederate statues, but they are being reinstalled at nearby Civil War battlefields. This form of display is in a much better context, anyway. Rather than being publicly displayed in a town common or in front of a public building, which is an implicit act of honoring something or someone, the statues now serve a legitimate historical purpose: to remind us of what can happen when some Americans ignore the rule of law and a nation splits apart.

     

    The Durham incident is also a reminder, once again, of who comprises the left: While watching the coverage of the radicals toppling the statue, I saw signs reading and heard the crowd chanting, “No cops! No KKK! No fascists USA!”

     

    President Trump has suffered from asserting there were good and bad on both sides. Frankly, I’d like to hear more about what he meant by the “good” on the white nationalist side. But President Trump is infamous for words coming out differently than from what he’d intended. However, that anti-cop sign and chant, and the groups’ commitment to ending America as it exists, verifies the “bad” on each side comment. Equating the KKK and fascists with America’s cops is absurd, but some, even in the mainstream left, tolerate or accept, or, even further, endorse this notion. 

     

    There seems to be a noteworthy difference between right and the left. The left attempts to conflate white nationalists with all Republicans, conservatives, and Trump supporters. The problem is all of these right-wing groups routinely condemn Nazis, the KKK, and other white nationalist groups. To the contrary, the left, including the Democratic Party and a Democratic President, respectively, invited the mother of a robbery suspect who assaulted and then tried to take a police officer’s gun to their national convention and radical minority groups like BLM to our White House.    

     

  • Child Suspended for “Liking” Image of Toy Gun on Instagram.

    The First and Second Amendments are under heavy attack by the radical left. We see this leftist nonsense to squelch free speech and abridge gun rights every day. The following story combines constitutional attacks on the First, Second, Fourth—and probably Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments against a public middle school student.

    Now, I will concede that public school officials can argue that they have no idea what to do anymore—mostly, because of other public school officials who adopt stupid policies. We critics often say, “Just use common sense.” Well, much of the problem these days is that commonsensical school officials are not allowed to apply their common sense. In fact, school districts often mandate ludicrous policies that force officials to act in direct contravention to common sense or risk losing their jobs or worse. Remember the second-grader who got “dispended” because he threw an invisible grenade to rescue the world? Still, that does not mean we should stop fighting to make sure common sense prevails.

    So, in this story on the NRA-ILA website, according to WBRC Fox 19 News in Trenton, Ohio, middle school student Zachary Bowlin got himself suspended for violating the school board’s “zero tolerance” policy. The policy prohibits, “violent, disruptive, harassing, intimidating, bullying, or any other inappropriate behavior by its students.” What heinous act did Zach commit to elicit such wrath from school superintendent Russ Fussnecker? After school one evening, at home, while perusing the Instagram social media website, Zach had the unmitigated audacity to “Like” a picture of an Airsoft gun—a toy. No, really!  

    For those unfamiliar with Airsoft guns, the name implies its function. It uses air to propel a soft projectile (the size of a pea). The guns are plastic and the projectiles (bullets) are designed not to injure participants. I know: my kids used them as toys when they were kids and I used them for training as a police officer.

    According to the article, the photo Zachary “liked” was of a “plastic gun on the table, with the caption, “Ready.” You might wonder if this social media “like” was just one facet of a multifaceted set of nefarious circumstances that created suspicion about the student. Nope. That was it; Zach “liked” a picture of a toy on social media. WBRC reported, “Superintendent Russ Fussnecker essentially admitted that the school’s reaction was based only on the picture.”

    Let’s look at the bright side: Zach is getting a civics lesson, thanks to his overreacting, overreaching school officials: One, his First Amendment rights were violated when the district punished him for expressing his point of view. He let people know he liked a picture (it could be argued that his Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment rights were also violated when he was suspended without due process). Two, the Second Amendment was effectively violated, being tarnished when a toy facsimile of a firearm became the focal point of Zachary’s discipline.

    Now, for constitutional violation number three: The Fourth Amendment prohibition against unlawful searches and seizures. According to the article, “The next morning, Zachary told a WBRC reporter, school officials, ‘called me down… patted me down and checked me for weapons, then they told me I was getting expelled or suspended or whatever.’” Where was the warrant? Where was the probable cause? Where was the reasonable suspicion? (Where is the ACLU?) And, finally, where was the common sense?

  • Seattle’s Anti-Second Amendment City Government: Once again, the ends justify the means and Seattle’s commitment to government transparency is a joke.

    Yet another example of the left’s lack of government transparency and ends-justify-the-means tactics has oozed out of the liberal cauldron of the farcical but hazardous to liberty Seattle city government. An article, “Seattle Gun Tax Fails to Generate Projected Revenue, Succeeds in Burdening Rights,” (NRA-ILA, March 24, 2017), published by the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action provides further evidence that, in 2015, Seattle city government proposed a targeted tax on Seattle’s few remaining gun dealerships. Proposed as a so-called “sin tax” because, as Councilman Tim Burgess put it, “It’s time for the gun industry to help defray” the costs of criminal gun violence. What it was, was a poorly veiled attempt to eradicate gun shops in Seattle.

    At least, if the council members admitted that eliminating gun shops within the city limits was their objective, one could respect the political honesty. However, honesty and the left rarely mix. 

    In 2016, I wrote a blog about Seattle gun shop owner Sergey Solyanik. He implored Seattle’s city council members not to enact a tax that would ruin his livelihood and possibly cause him to move his business out of the city (he did relocate from the city). He said, “the data that has been submitted by the proponents [of the tax] is completely fake.”

    The Council didn’t care. After all, Solyanik doesn’t think like they do. That doesn’t make him a political opponent; it doesn’t even make him wrong. It makes him evil. So, he should suffer. The Seattle City Council which voted unanimously for the tax had an end to achieve and this illegal tax was their means.

    Poor Mr. Solyanik was in their way—and, he dared to assert his rights. So, it was necessary that he be crushed under the Council’s jackboots—or Birkenstocks. I mean, why not? Even if the courts eventually declare the tax illegal, which, if you read the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment, Washington State Constitution’s Article I § 24, and the state’s preemption statutes, they must, the Council will have achieved its goal: No gun shops in Seattle (I’ll say it again: drug dealers, addicts, and gangsters get more respect in Seattle than law-abiding gun owners and gun dealers do).

    In promoting this anti-gun tax, City Councilman Tim Burgess endorsed ludicrous revenue projections of between $300,000 and $500,000 per year [i.e. “fake data”], which would go to “anti-gun” research at Harborview Medical Center.

    Now, let’s peek at the City’s alleged commitment to government transparency: The City refuses to release the total tax collected. Despite record national and state gun sales, “Burgess confessed, ‘tax payments received by the City were less than $200,000.” Seattle won’t disclose the amount, citing a nonsensical notion of protecting taxpayer confidentiality. By releasing the total amount of tax collected? They must believe Seattleites are stupid. More likely, Seattle’s lefty liberal population doesn’t care when the City Council abridges other people’s rights, provided the government does not violate “their” rights. So, why should the Council worry about government transparency?

    So, revenues fell far short of that projected half-million dollars. In fact, it was less than $200,000. Talk about vague, less than 200K could be anywhere from $199,999 to one cent. I’ll concede it’s probably more than a penny, but how much less than two hundred grand?

    Whatever the results of future court rulings, liberal Seattle government accomplished its goal. It’s unlikely the court decisions will make any injured party (gun dealers) whole. Only by suffering a financial sanction will liberal cities such as Seattle ever cease their destructive drive to turn their citizens and business owners into game pieces on their own social-justice, utopian Monopoly Board. The only way that would occur, and the only way to prevent the City from attempting such nonsense again, is for Solyanik and other victims to sue Seattle’s socialistic ass off. I hope they can. I hope they do! 

  • For Radical Leftists, Anti-racist = Anti-police

    The Left is adept at Orwellian manipulation of language. For example, they’ll tell you they are not “anti-police.” Then they’ll use euphemisms: “anti-police abuse,” “anti-excessive force,” etc.

    Well, in a rare act of honesty and a rage against the adage, “it’s better to be thought a fool and remain silent than to speak (write) and remove all doubt,” the title of this article proclaims a true belief: Defunding Police—How Antiracist Organizers got Seattle to Listen (Unlike leftists, I’m not going to throw a tantrum or a riot in an un-American attempt to keep you from hearing a message with which I disagree. Please, read it—no, really; you have got to read this crap). It’s important to remain aware of their destructive social message and how radical leftist politicians aid in their successes to the detriment of a free society.

    Antiracist? Not anti-police? Using “anti-police” would have been more honest.

    So, in the radical left’s world, Anti-racist = Anti-police.

    The only thing surprising about this equation is the lack of obfuscation—which is almost refreshing. Like Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders, at least this publication, almost, says what it means: being against the police is the same as being against racists because the police are racist. I suppose I could be accused of putting words in their mouths, but how could anyone arrive at contrary conclusion? 

    Police equating to racist, of course, is insulting to cops, but the Left doesn’t like the police. Remember, they aren’t simply opponents who are fed up and have finally gotten up off the couch to protest tyranny; they are the enemies of a civil society. They just hate cops. That seems clear. They fight for policies that put police officers at higher risk because they have no respect for what cops do. They don’t care about police officers most of whom are among the finest citizens of any community. The cop-hater’s warped equation also insults people who think critically rather than ideologically. People who come to conclusions based on empirical facts rather than selecting “facts” that conform to a predetermined, ideological narrative.

    Still, I hesitate to bring attention to such ignorance. But, the sad thing is, political leaders, such as the leftist collective running (ruining) Seattle gives racialist groups such as BLM and BTB (Block the Bunker) far more clout than their destructive ideas deserve. The radical left may riot to shut down their opponent’s right speak, but we truly need to listen to what the Left says, so we can oppose their ideas more effectively. Oppose their collectivist, Utopian myth whenever possible.   

  • Liberal Contempt for Others.

    Libertarianism has been a part of me for so long sometimes I forget just how beautiful a political philosophy it is and how good it makes me feel to be a part of the continuing American Revolution. The left likes to lay claim to being the “radicals and revolutionaries” in this modern era. However, it is the original libertarians (classical liberals) such as Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and other founding fathers who remain the true radicals, standing in opposition to tyranny whether from a monarch like King George III or the modern progressive left movement. And so are we also true radicals who accept the gift of being our Founders’ political progeny. Leftists are simply monarchists whose sovereign, rather than a king or queen, is the large, oppressive welfare state. They prefer subjects beholding to a welfare state to free citizens engaged in voluntary cooperation with a limited government conducted under the social contract.  

    Libertarianism is beautiful in its trust in humanity—in ordinary human beings—in others. To the contrary, the ugliness of the left that demonizes its political opponents as “evil” and dismisses others as too “stupid” to manage their own lives. The problem is when the left says others are, “too stupid to run their own lives,” “stupid” means anyone opposing the left’s political view.

    I have Democrat friends and family who argue others simply can’t be trusted to run their own lives and need government to make decisions for them. I’m in jaw-dropping awe of such audacity–such contempt for others is frightening. I reply, “What about you? Should you be able to make your own decisions?” Most of them, of course, answer, “Yes.” But some concede it might be worth losing some liberty so that “stupid” others are protected from themselves. Remarkably, many on the left would rather lose their own liberty than allow others to retain theirs.

    The left abdicates the gift bestowed by nature’s God, fought, bled, and died for by our forebears, and enshrined in our founding documents: Liberty! Think of the beauty of not only being able to live one’s life free from excessive government intrusion–to strive for human flourishing–but also of acknowledging others’ liberty.

    Since the inception of civil society human political progress has been measured by its recognition of individual liberty. The history of the free world venerates the birth of democracy in Greece, the signings of the Magna Carta and the Declaration of Independence, and the framing of the U.S. Constitution (including the Bill of Rights). Personal liberty has been at the core of the history of the evolution of civilized society.

    The miserable history of leftist progressivism is written in the economic and social destruction wrought by socialism and the murders of a hundred million others committed by communism. And where did Marxist-Leninist communism find itself? As Ronald Reagan said, “On the ash heap of history.” And where is American liberty still found? “On a shining city on a hill.” America!

    I side with the beautiful: individual liberty and personal freedom. I like that if my side gets its (political) way, others can live as they choose—pursue their happiness. This view makes my political philosophy morally superior, anathema to the leftist philosophy where others do not live their lives as they choose—are prevented from pursuing their happiness. Like Jack Nicholson’s character in the film As Good as it Gets says, “The fact that I get it makes me feel good, about me.”

    In conclusion, allow me to prove me point: if libertarian concept’s, with its sublime and egalitarian benefits and attendant free (fair) market capitalism, reign politically (even in a Republican-populist administration), leftists may live as they choose. Libertarianism may not be perfect, but it points humanity in the right direction.      

  • If Milo Yiannopoulos was Looking for Freedom of Speech, Why Would he Look for it on America’s College Campuses?

    A lot of folks on the political right, in a sincere but misplaced attempt to understand their political opponents, make excuses for their bad (sometimes criminal) behavior.

    “They just don’t understand.”

    “If they only stopped to think about their position…”

    “They don’t know what they’re doing?”

    Sadly, yes they do.

    Last night at the University of California Berkeley we saw the disgraceful behavior of ant-democratic, anti-free speech, anti-American radicals infringing on conservative/libertarian writer, Milo Yiannopoulos,’ First Amendment rights–destroying property and abridging the rights of those who came to hear him speak.

    These people (term applied loosely) are not mere political opponents the leftist media would have us believe. These are militant malcontents who know exactly what they’re doing: attempting to use violence to disrupt our civilized, democratic republic. One sign read, “Be Ungovernable.”  

    Think about it. Conservatives and libertarians often point out that the left needs the right because without the productivity of the right the left would have nothing to redistribute. Conversely, the constitutionalist right does not need the leftist activists, especially the radical left because they contribute nothing. The radicals don’t produce; they consume. These violent lefties don’t create, they destroy. And yet the national media put them forth as rank-and-file Democrats.

    As a retired police officer my heart went out to those Berkley officers obviously restricted from acting appropriately. They were complying with the incompetent direction of political leaders who cling to some romantic notion of the protest culture a la 1960’s. Tacitly or overtly, they allow left-wing crybabies to crush an invited campus guest’s civil liberties and then blame the guest rather than those who infringe on constitutional rights and destroy property.

    Here’s the leftist equation:

    Free speech does not include Hate speech.

    What is hate speech?

    Whatever the left says it is.

    The left blames Yiannopoulos for the threats, violence, and destruction by referring to him as controversial, radical, and divisive; inflammatory, provocative, and of using “hate-speech.” Isn’t this like blaming the rape victim rather than the rapist for being sexually assaulted?

    All of this occurring at the birthplace of America’s campus Free-Speech Movement made famous at Berkeley half-century ago. Many leaders of America’s college campuses have become despicable in the eyes of liberty. It seems Berkeley is now in contention to be the birthplace of the Restricted Speech Movement.     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • A Seattle Liberal Attacks City’s Protest Culture

    The other day I read something fascinatingly waggish and oh, so very Seattle in its irony. The source of my amusement came from an opinion piece: “Stop protesting Seattle Asian Art Museum renovation” (Seattle Times, January 13, 2017).

     

    First, a preface: I have affection for the SAAM. The museum is in the precinct I patrolled during my over two-decades-long career. I enjoyed the beautiful building and speaking with many wonderful patrons. I also agree with the writer of the piece, Glenn Nelson, that people should stop protesting SAAM renovations, although I acknowledge (and announce) their right to do so. Renovations are overdue, appropriate, and will enhance Seattle’s cultural resources.  

     

    But where exactly does Mr. Nelson, obviously a liberal/progressive, acquire his moral authority to ask others to stop protesting anything? Has Mr. Nelson forgotten in what city he lives? Seattle has planted, cultivated, and harvested its current protest (crop) culture for many years. Oh, before continuing, I should modify my contention for clarity: Its liberal/progressive protest culture.

     

    Years ago, I remember protesters descending on SPD’s East Precinct to protest…wait for it… the U.S. Navy bombing uninhabited islands for training in… again, wait for it… Puerto Rico!!! I can’t count the number of protests I’ve worked: APEC, WTO, and the Revolutionary Communist Youth Brigade; Critical Mass, anarchists, and Black Lives Matter, and no such list would be complete (though this one is far from complete) without Occupy Wall Street’s 99%ers. During the last years of my career, leftist demonstrations were a monthly and many times weekly occurrence.

     

    Mr. Nelson, who dutifully introduces himself in his first sentence, “as a person of color,” provides his liberal/progressive bona fides and curriculum vitae throughout the article. He cites his Asian American heritage, green space, the ADA, diversity, inclusion, and Seattle’s Race and Social Justice Initiative.

     

    It seems that his fellow Seattleites’ objections are not worthy of protest because, according to Mr. Nelson, he has determined that “The ‘encroachment’ on green space [and impact on neighborhood traffic] is too negligible to be considered a source for opposition.” Just like so many liberals, Mr. Nelson finds no problem dismissing other people’s concerns when they fail to fall in line with his preferred narrative–his desires. Remember, Mr. Nelson did not simply write that he disagrees with the protesters; he declares they, “stop protesting….”

     

    Now, I do not wish to make light of Mr. Nelson’s heart-felt plea on behalf of himself and people he loves and cares about. He obviously believes his perspective is correct. But it seems there’s a lesson here for Seattle’s liberal/progressive activists with their emerald green penchant for protest: opposing points of view are not always, in every way, and every circumstance wrong, and certainly not racist or otherwise evil just because they’re put forth by the “another side” of an argument. Opposing political perspectives, ideologies, and issues are simply that: positions held by people who simply oppose your view. They are due the same respect you feel you deserve, not slander, libel, and demonization.