In the climactic scene in "Unforgiven", Clint Eastwood's character, William Money, holds a double barrel shotgun on a group of men in a bar and asks whose bar it is. One man steps up to claim ownership, whereupon Money shoots him dead. When Money's sworn enemy, Little Bill (Gene Hackman) gets insensed that he would kill an unarmed man, Money says, "Well he should have armed himself if he's going to decorate his bar with my friend." (The body of Money's best friend was set up outside in an open coffin).
So today, in Paris, we had two Muslim terrorists (there--I said it: "MUSLIM terrorists." The president should practice saying those exact words) killing several unarmed people. Why were they unarmed? Because in France it's rather difficult to own a gun. You can, but it's an effort few are willing to expend. They have what's often called "common sense" gun laws, you see--laws meant to restrict access to, or deny outright, guns for law abiding citizens. Muslim terrorists are, by definition, NOT law abiding citizens. So the laws don't apply to them.
The result is that when the William Moneys of the world come a-calling to settle a score, there's nothing to be done but die. And that's what a dozen Parisians did today, they died. The business where they worked that was attacked--a business that had offended these Muslims--had no weapons on the premises, and no one on the street had any guns, either. Or no one who was willing to use them.
So only the armed survived. A wounded cop, lying on the sidewalk, was executed at point blank range. He, too, was unarmed. A cop. No gun. This is the European version of "common sense."
No wonder Muslim terrorists chose this place to attack. It's easy to attack those you hate; it's so much easier to do so when those you hate are also unarmed.
By the end of 2008, Iraq, while not exactly Vermont quite yet, had been liberated and set free of the family of wood chipper-using monsters, killers, and rapists known as Saddam & Sons, thanks in large part to the United States. That family had been dispatched to the great beyond, and mourners for them were few.
For the first time in most people's memory, free elections had been held that didn't involve just one candidate for whom everyone had to vote or be cut into pieces. A representative form of government was budding, regional terrorist organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah no longer had support and encouragement from Iraq, and citizens of the newly freed nation didn't need to fear the midnight knock on the door by Saddam's men coming to take Dad away for "questioning."
For most people, that would be called "progress."
But then something unfortunate took place. In the United States, another mindset was about to take over the reigns of power, one to whom all this "war stuff" was a mistake and a form of global bullying. This kind of thinking preferred to believe that if we extended our hand of friendship and understanding, the forces of terrorism would "unclench their fist." And so the goal was to remove ourselves from Iraq, leave the citizens there to set up shop on their own and guide their own lives, and we could go back home and work on domestic problems. Good luck, everyone. If you need anything, don't hesitate to...try to find our number.
And so we left, confident that we had done our job and delivered a stable nation to them. That terrorist fist would unclench any day now, but it would be Iraq's problem if it didn't.
Well, it didn't. And now the problem isn't just Iraq's, it's ours--so much so that the child of the terrorist groups we'd left in tatters back then is now so strong that it has effectively erased the border between Syria and Iraq and may have even entered the U.S. across our southern border, intent on blowing up a major city. Apparently, they didn't get the memo that we had extended our hand in friendship by ceasing our military efforts against them. Their fists are still clenched, and their daggers are out heading for our necks.
"Peace Through Strength" is not something this administration believes in. Being strong is to be a bully and an imposition on others. We're too big for our britches; we need to be taken down a few pegs and be like every other nation in the world--just background noise. Who are we to put down evil? What's evil, anyhow?
Well, if there's any doubt about what it is and why we need to fight it until it's gone, just ask the family of James Foley. I think they have a pretty good idea of what I'm talking about.
The typical child molester is a white, middle-aged male, unmarried or divorced, often living alone, and has had a series of temporary--and modest--jobs. The typical drive-by shooter is a black male between 17 and 30, unemployed, a dropout, and living in an urban environment. The typical day laborer is Hispanic, male, illegally in the country, and wearing a baseball cap. Can be found loitering outside convenience stores.
Now, is there anything unfair about any of those descriptions? After all, not all unmarried white males are pedophiles; not every black inner city youth is packing heat; not every Hispanic male is illegal or in need of a day-labor job.
But enough of each are those things to be of concern to society. If we wish to reduce the congestion in 7-Eleven parking lots, it's probably not going to help much if we decide to chase off all soccer moms who pull up in their Dodge Caravans to buy their kids a Slurpee. If murders are a problem in the Big City, making firearms difficult to obtain by middle-class businessmen, hunters, or average suburbanites probably will have little deterrent effect on the crime stats.
So what if terrorism presents a problem? Who is the "typical" terrorist? We've had years to learn the answers. What have we found? Are they usually a white, female college student? A ten-year old boy traveling with his mother? A black schoolteacher? An Hispanic businessman? No. They are Middle Eastern (read Islamic), usually males, between late teens and about 40. They do not have names like Evan or Louis or Gerhard or Winston. They have Islamic-sounding names, ones we've heard and can recognize as Islamic. They may or may not be wearing Islamic garb, but they are easy to spot in a crowd. Perhaps it's the way they carry themselves. But picking out most Islamic people from a line of passengers is not rocket science, and Islamic people are the ones--the ONLY ones--among whom we seem to be finding all terrorists.
So my question is, why are we stopping and examining people who do not fit the profile of who we're looking for? It makes no more sense to pat down Shirley from accounting looking for explosives than it does interrupting a meeting of the board of directors of a Fortune 500 company looking for the guy who was just seem driving past a bus stop and firing into the crowd from the window of his beat-up Toyota. Our guy is not going to be found there, sorry. Quit wasting time.
The TSA needs to get a clue. Forget "equal treatment." When we start seeing bombers more or less equally distributed from all walks of life, THEN we can start checking Shirley from accounting. Until then, let's just follow the facts where they lead. Mohammed, step out of line, please.
redwoodpecker brings up a good point. You have to stand somewhere. A lot of people have died. People not entirely unlike you and I. Human beings, spiritual, cultural, beings who loved, ate, played, listened to music, and then died prematurely because of the continued involvement of our military in their country. There is no place for pride or ego here, there is only right and wrong now.
Here I stand, making it clear that I still don't support the destruction our country has caused. Where do you stand now?
According to the ORB poll, a survey of 1,461 adults suggested that the total number slain during more than four years of war was more than 1.2 million.
ORB said it drew its conclusion from responses to the question about those living under one roof: "How many members of your household, if any, have died as a result of the conflict in Iraq since 2003?"
Based on Iraq's estimated number of households -- 4,050,597 -- it said the 1.2 million figure was reasonable
It was the highest estimate given so far of civilian deaths in Iraq. Last year, a study in the medical journal Lancet put the number at 654,965, which Iraq's government has dismissed as "ridiculous." LINK
There's the approximately 1 million killed according to the best epidemiological research conducted by one of the world's most prestigious scientific institutions, there's the 75,000-80,000 (based on news reports) the Washington Post and other commercial media allow, and there's the clean and antiseptic blood-free war the administration claims to have fought (recall that they dismissed the Lancet findings out of hand and yet offered no numbers of their own).
Americans were asked in an AP poll conducted earlier this year how many Iraqi civilians they thought had been killed as a result of the invasion and occupation, and the median answer they gave was 9,890. That's less than a third of the number of civilian deaths confirmed by U.N. monitors in 2006 alone.
I was just driving to get some lunch, and came upon what looked like our town's entire police force, national guard, and a couple state troopers. It didn't look like there had been some major crime, so I'm wondering if this has to do with the terrorism going on in the UK? I heard on the news that the FBI sent a bulletin to all law enforcement to be on the look out for car bombs. Anyone else see something similar today?