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Opening Arguments

Shooting their mouths off

If gun control goes down in flames, you may blame the NRA, but give some of the credit to celebrity blabbermouths who can't refrain from staying stupid things.

Chris Rock:

I’m just here to support the president of the United States. The president of the United States is, you know, our boss. But he’s also, you know, the president and the first lady are kind of like the mom and the dad of the country. And when your dad says something, you listen. And when you don’t, it usually bites you in the ass later on. So, I’m here to support the president.

The president is my dad. And my boss. All those liberals are starting to sound a tad authoritarian, aren't they?

Tony Bennett:


It's the kind of turn that happened to the great country of Germany, when Nazis came over and created tragic things, and they had to be told off. And if we continue this kind of violence and accept it in our country, the rest of the world's going to really take care of us, in a very bad way.

We should learn that we're the greatest country, because we're all different nationalities and all different religions. And we should show the rest of the world how to behave.

Whaaaa?? If we don't have strong gun control, which will mean giving the government enormous power, this country will turn into a Nazi Germany with the government having enormous power. Or something. And then the world will kick our ass.


Harl Delos
Thu, 02/07/2013 - 11:05am

Robert Heinlein was saying back in the 1950s that people are confused, and "public servant" has turned into "public master."  And in 1966s, the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense was founded largely because "public servants" were turning fire hoses, police dogs, tear gas and billies on minorities exercising their first amendment right to peacefully assemble and petition the government of grievances.

The courts have fairly consistantly held that cops have nearly carte blanc authority to "maintain public order."  But even though it was a neighborhood watcb guy who shot Trayvon Martin, not a real cop, lots of white folks were outraged by the apparently blind eye turned to George Zimmerman.  We've all seen people stopped for "driving while black", and other unequal treatment under the law, and we've all been passed on the highway by folks who have state sheriff association placards bolted to the license.

Tony Bennett is right in a way.  In 1947, we were beloved by the world because we had stepped into WWII, and shut down both halves of the war, not because we wanted something for ourselves, but out of a spirit of being a good neighbor. We don't act like good neighbors anymore.  We "spread democracy" but we define democracy as doing what the US wants, instead of letting people govern themselves and act in their own self interest.

The rest of the world isn't jealous of us.  They are pissed off because we act like bullies stealing lunch money and we think we're fools. Khrushchev said "We will bury you" and we misunderstood.  He was simply saying the  equivalent of "watch my dust."  When I see an old WWII movie, and the SS officer demands to see papers, I jump up and down and scream, "Why aren't you making him take his shoes off, you fool!"

Chris is more of a fool than Bennett, but it's not like either side has an exclusive.  When the Miranda decision came down, the right wing was predicting the end of the world, but we've found that when cops tell you that you have the right to remain silent, everybody talks anyhow.