Tag Archives: bag of popcorn

Guns: the new age tool of conflict resolution

“If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.”

Abraham Maslow

Before SYG statutes were initiated, people drew guns as something of a last resort; to protect themselves, their family or property.  I’d like to think that it was also because of our intuitive appreciation of human life.

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Today the ordinary, private citizen is given carte blanche to pull a weapon and blaze away with questionable or little regard for the consequences knowing that the slant of the statute has their proverbial back.

In this manner, more times than not these days it’s as if we’re swatting flies with bazookas.  Channeling Maslow, it becomes if they have a weapon, they will use it, under any and all possible circumstances.  Judgment and restraint will no longer matter as we tread into dangerous territory where everyone is touchy, irritable and packing.

And that’s the dark side in all of this.  Are we prepared for the people who will eagerly seek those chance encounters, possibly even manipulating them to a violent, one-sided conclusion?  The sad and horrible truth is that some folks want to kill somebody and welcome the opportunity to do so under justice’s blind eye.

Guns, along with SYG, are becoming a definitive tool of conflict resolution.  Forget talking out your differences or simply walking away.  And you dare not get into a fistfight with someone.  It could cost you your life.

It used to be that people settled their differences in a safe and relatively harmless way.  Even if the disagreement or argument became heated and a fight broke out, more times than not the individuals involved would live to see another day.

It’s a memory we all need to reflect on as more incidents occur and go to trial.  If we allow SYG to ignore the total human condition-things such as intent, temperament or rationale-before rendering judgment, guns will slowly, but ultimately, become the only tool in our arsenal of negotiation and the way we settle even the pettiest of squabbles.

We should ask ourselves, do we really want to become like that?

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Filed under Politics and Government

Places and Spaces I’ll never see

Like any other couple closing in on their retirement, my wife and I have contemplated travel in our later years.  But for a while at my house, we’ve thought long and hard not so much about faraway safaris and adventures on global or American lands but rather about states and countries whose soil we’ll never step foot on.

The idea first took hold with the disappearance of Natalie Holloway.  The subsequent non-investigation that followed made up our minds that we wouldn’t be going to Aruba any damn time soon and the years-later prosecution and conviction of Joran Van der Sloot for another murder did nothing to calm our fears of traveling there.

Next is Texas because, as Tater Salad (Ron White) once proclaimed, they have an express lane to the death penalty.  My problem is that as final as the death penalty is I don’t see them making a lot of strides in ensuring they execute the correct person.  Even when faced with evidence of innocence years later, Texas is still reluctant to recognize a mistake.  Besides that, Texas is a “packing” stand your ground state.

Another thing, if you do find yourself in Texas, don’t drive.

Colorado gets honorable mention on this short list.  It seems even doobies aren’t enough to calm those folks down.  Again, they too are a stand your ground state.  In addition, they’re the state that gave us AOL and if there’s anyone out there who’s tried in the past to unsubscribe from that service, they know what I’m talking about.

Matter of fact, all stand your ground states are honorable mention on my list; peeps being too quick to draw on someone for any and every perceived indignity.

Which brings me to my A number one selection of places and spaces I’ll never see: Florida.

I knew something was askew in Florida when they acquitted George Zimmerman in the murder of Trayvon Martin.  You know it’s bad where you are when a grown man can stalk and kill an unarmed teen and get away with it.  That these types of killings seem able to crisscross all sorts of demographics doesn’t make me feel any more secure or regret my decision to stay the hell away from there.  And this latest movie house shooting is very, very troubling.

Maybe it’s me but the fact that a retired policeman would do such a thing boggles the mind.  It not only bears the question of how he performed his job while on active duty-the decisions he made as well as his temperament- but it also calls into question the choices the state has made and is continuing to make where it concerns those citizens it chooses to enforce its laws and carry guns while doing so.

Does it surprise anyone that the defense attorney will attempt to turn a bag of popcorn into a deadly weapon?

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Filed under Life and Society