Brothers

Brothers
E Plurubus Unum, Rex Montis

Thursday, December 23, 2010

"Why?" you ask? Good question.

The following is an email forward. I believe it summerizes the question as to why some people feel the need to own/carry a gun. It also fits well with my previous post.


Why Grandpa carries a gun

PEOPLE ASK WHY?
Why Carry a Gun?

My old grandpa said to me 'Son, there comes a time in every man's life when he stops bustin' knuckles and starts bustin' caps and
usually it's when he becomes too old to take an ass whoopin.'

I don't carry a gun to kill people.
I carry a gun to keep from being killed.

I don't carry a gun to scare people.
I carry a gun because sometimes this world can be a scary place.

I don't carry a gun because I'm paranoid.
I carry a gun because there are real threats in the world.

I don't carry a gun because I'm evil.
I carry a gun because I have lived long enough to see the evil in the world.

I don't carry a gun because I hate the government.
I carry a gun because I understand the limitations of government.

I don't carry a gun because I'm angry.
I carry a gun so that I don't have to spend the rest of my life hating myself for failing to be prepared.

I don't carry a gun because I want to shoot someone.
I carry a gun because I want to die at a ripe old age in my bed, and not on a sidewalk somewhere tomorrow afternoon.

I don't carry a gun because I'm a cowboy.
I carry a gun because, when I die and go to heaven, I want to be a cowboy.

I don't carry a gun to make me feel like a man.
I carry a gun because men know how to take care of themselves and the ones they love.

I don't carry a gun because I feel inadequate.
I carry a gun because unarmed and facing three armed thugs, I am inadequate.

I don't carry a gun because I love it.
I carry a gun because I love life and the people who make it meaningful to me.

Police protection is an oxymoron.
Free citizens must protect themselves.
Police do not protect you from crime, they usually just investigate the crime after it happens and then call someone in to clean up the mess.

Personally, I carry a gun because I'm too young to die and too old to take an ass whoopin'.....author unknown (but obviously brilliant)


Conclusion: You don't want your house to burn down, and aren't really scared that it will, yet you keep a loaded fire extinguisher handy...

You aren't necessarily scared you will get into a car accident (happens much more frequently than accidental shootings or deaths), yet you ensure your children are seat belted in at a minimum.

Why then would you not take precausions to avoid violent crime? Why would one not want a better understanding of how a gun works, and how to use such a tool should the need ever arise? Take a class, educate yourself, and don't count on the police to save the day when you call 911.

Wo to the Ignorant..

A very tough thing to do is confront willfully ignorant people. Facts, statistics, logic and history mean nothing to them. They have a feeling and an opinion and nothing can shake them.

I recently read a response to an article in the Bemidji Pioneer paper titled, "Don't waste your time on gun control issue scenerios." I have found it nearly impossible to argue with someone online, but it did inspire this post.

Part of this response reads, "...that sort of ethnic cleansing is not a threat to modern America.

The letter is correct in the fact that millions died. It is plainly absurd, however, in its implication that a large group of our fellow citizens (gun haters all) will be willing to “exterminate” the rest of us.

Let us imagine the scenario: A gang of gun haters from the farms, towns, and cities of the country is tasked (after the surrender of all the guns) with the “round up.” ......."


This post continues, but suffice to say the writer of the letter does not want to believe that full gun control could ever lead to American exterminations. This is so sad to see. I know there are Jews still alive who would have once said the same thing, "There is no way that my fellow German citizens would ever be willing to help 'exterminate' us..." We know how that story ended. The mere belief or feeling that something won't happen is simply not enough to stop reality.

Somones "feeling" that they will not be raped does not mean you do not take precautions against dangerous scenerios. Someone "feeling" that the nice man/uncle/friend/relative down the street would never mollest their child does not mean it does not happen. There is evil in the world, and people are inherently evil.

Germany could have been a modern America. It saddens me to know that there are so many people out there, and even readers of this blog who think it is simply obsurd that gun control could lead to a totalitarian government that would ever consider genocide or the like.

Unfortunately when the shackles of apathy are in place and we find that our freedoms have been taken away one by one, it is too late. Genocide aside, ask Australian citizens how they like the 312% increase in violent crime under their first year of gun control. Ask the Russians, the Germans, the French, the Polocks, the Finlanders, the Swedish, the Danish, the English, the Scotts, the Irish or any country in current and past history what happens when free citizens are disarmed. It never ends pretty.

The argument that we are a more advanced and "civilized" country and are therefore immune to this kind of barbarism is simply obsurd. All we need to do is imagine the looting, raping and crime surge during Hurricane Katrina to imagine how very out of control this country could get just from something as simple as a natural disaster.

It is never good to write when angry, but I seem to do it a lot. I don't know who came up with that notion anyway. There is no point to any of this other than to say hind sight is 20/20, and someone getting to say "I told you so" after the fact is much to grim a reconciliation.

The reason we have a 2nd ammendment is to ensure the rest of our basic freedoms/ammendments stay in place. However, we certainly don't need a piece of paper to tell us we have a right do defend ourselves. Unfortunately for most, by the time they realize this simple fact it will have already been to late, and they will have to live or die with the guilt that "it", =rape, murder, burgler, assault, theft, kidnapping, could have been avoided.

This post is quite long enough. I hope I gave someone, somewhere pause to think. Even if I didn't, I love putting what I am feeling into words. The following post after this was a forward I received, and is appropriate to go along with this post.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Super Fabulous

Taken from a popular new quote going around: "The Marines aren't just looking for a few good men anymore, they're now looking for a few super, awesome, fabulous men..."

This comes from the repeal of the old "Don't ask, Don't tell" policy with regards to open homosexuals serving in the armed forces.

My mantra has always been, "What you do in the privacy of your own bedroom is your business, it's not up to me to judge, that is for God." However, the second part of that has always been not to flaunt it, throw it in my face, or force me to accept your lifestyle.

This whole thing is ironic, since the military does not allow open relationships within units anyway, regardless of sexual preference. So then, what would be the point in serving openly? I see this as a break-down in unit cohesion. In today's fighting force it is simply another distraction. I will not get into the immorality etc etc and I am certainly not going to go around bashing homosexuals either.

But questions to ponder, flip this around a little. If one man bunks with 30 women is there potential for a problem? How about showering together? Is there the potential that after someone "comes out" in the military that somone else may be more or less inclined to help that person in combat? Is that a risk one is willing to take? There are many other questions as to the long term ramifications to this, all in the name of making a few people feel good about themselves.

Seperate but somewhat related side note: All in all, I am disgusted that the military has been turned into a political soap box. On the one hand everyone talks about being "tolerant." Yet, one general (McChrystal) speaks his mind and gives his opinion and he is summarily fired. Where is the tolerance? But the next general (Petraeus) is going to play nice, dance on his masters strings and be a good "Yes Man." Suffice to say, Generals should not be able to be appointed and fired by a civilian, even if he is "Commander in Chief."

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Taste of My Book

Just to get some feed-back and to motivate myself I am going to copy-paste a small exerpt from my book-in-the-making. Perhaps this will help me kick it into gear and finally get past page 18 (on which I've been procrastinating for about a year now...)


My humvee was third in a line of four as we drove up the dike next to one of the very few lakes in Iraq. I was one of sixteen United States Army Infantry soldiers that rode in silence, gripping an assortment of firearms as we endured the bumpy ride. Besides the water stretching into the distance, the desert looked like everything the name implies. Heat waves danced in front of me. The sun glared down on vast stretches of dry, packed, hot desert sand, which in turn reflected white hot light up into my face. The trickle of sweat running down my neck evaporated before it could touch my body- armored collar. A dry wind blew with the heat of an oven at 120 degrees. I could feel the salt deposits building in my clothing from the constant cycle of sweat, evaporate, dry, repeat…sigh.

A violent explosion erupted beneath my feet. Everything went black as a cloud of dust and smoke obscured my field of vision. I experienced a surging, lifting sensation; there was no noise, no sound at all. There was only a sense of tremendous power unleashing, and then complete weightlessness. An eternity later, our vehicle impacted against the ground and my head slammed into the small dashboard of my up-armored humvee. My humvee had stopped, but gravity continued to pull on 70 pounds of armor and equipment I wore; it strained to reach the floor through my body with no success. There was a further sensation of falling and then nothing. The feeling was interrupted as our vehicle came to an abrupt stop on its side.

To this day I cannot say for sure that I maintained consciousness. I can say that I remember a feeling of shock and denial course through me as I realized my vehicle had just been blown up by an IED (Improvised Explosive Device), and then I casually noted I was still in one piece.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Writing Style

As I previously noted, this winter should see an increase in not only book writing, but blog writing as well. Like mathematics, lack of practice results in apathy and loss of critical thinking process.

If I could give one piece of advice to would-be writers (and if anyone actually wanted my advice) it would be to write what you know. What one person feels is a mundane life experience, others may find interesting and intriguing, and YOU are the ultimate source and expert on yourself; thus, a wellspring of resources to draw from. Write what you like, else a pleasent pass-time will quickley turn into a laborous job.

For example, if someone were to write about one of their favorite pass-times (say hiking) and the things they experienced, it might make a great self-help book for would-be semi-serious beginning hikers. So the author might have lots of pictures along with tid-bits on boot types, survival kits, exercise routines, proper diet and or travel food etc. It would not behoove that writer to attempt writing about something they are in no way familiar with (assuming said writer does not wish to do extensive research).

That being said, I cannot believe the figurative wall I have run into with my book. It is not that there is a lack of information, the exact opposite is true. I have so much information and so many stories, that trying to make sense of it and have it flow smoothly is turning into somewhat of a headache.

And so, I have determined (and may have previously mentioned) that my book shall be segmented into a dozen or so key events that took place on my tour in Iraq. I'll run with that until the book is finished or a new idea presents itself. That is all for now, I may post a sample from chapter one to get some critique and see how it reads...

Monday, November 01, 2010

Just Because

Funny story, I don't have any idea as to what to write about the end.

However, that is in fact, one of the writing tips and/or tools I have learned to use. Speaking of writing, my book is coming along extremely slooooowly. Yet, I simply chalk it up to being busy with life and write a page here and there.

It hardly seems possible that 3 years have passed already since we returned from the sand box. I have not kept in touch with most of the guys as we all promised we would. A tragic death brought us all back together briefly and then we all wandered back into the mist that seems to hide one from another.

This mist seems to have many names. One is life, another is career, some of those in the mist have no excuse and some have many, but none are needed.

Life is simple for me right now; I have a life, a family and a job...why make it more complex? It does not need to be. A friend of mine coined a phrase that pretty much sums it all up. "Sky is blue, water is wet, people are crazy, and the water is going to flow where it wants to..." Which pretty much says some things are beyond our control, so why try to control it?

I am getting my writer's nook all set up in one of our spare rooms, so hopefully this winter will see many chapters in my book unfold. Until then, I will at least try to update this site slightly more often than 3 months at a stretch.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Parasites

Laziness or Sloth, is the avoidance of physical labor. 2 Thes 3:10 sums it all up very nicely, "He who does not work neither shall he eat." Could it get any more simplistic?

Many humans, especially in America, are parasites. A parasite simply stated is: An organism that grows, feeds, and is sheltered on or in a different organism while contributing nothing to the survival of.

This in turn leads us to the growing ravaging disease of laziness or sloth or WELFARE ABUSE in America. While not all on welfare are abusing it, most are.

MN as I have stated before, has no residency clause. This means yesterday you live in Texas, today you live in Minnesota, and you are entitled to living allowance, food allowance, cash allowance, living assistance etc etc etc...totalling almost $40,000 per year for one person with no dependants. Add a couple kids to the picture and that dollar sign keeps going up. So what is the incentive to leave this life of luxury and return to supporting yourself....? Well, there isn't one.

We have made doing nothing far too lucrative to quit. Unfortunately the only problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money, and that point is fast approaching. In fact, we're several trillion beyond it.

Step one in this economic recovery is the drastic overhaul called welfare reform.

"One of the consequences of such notions as "entitlements" is that people who have contributed nothing to society felt that society owes them something, apparently just for being nice enough to grace us with their presence." -Thomas Sowell-

I have already written an entire post dedicated to welfare, so I will not be redundant. I know plenty of people missing limbs or who have major physical or mental disabilities who are still able to work and live very productive lives. Lets lose the parasites please.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Offensive

I got this following prayer as a forward. I was going to make a post on why we are so concerned with offending people in America, but thought I would start with this and then do a series of posts instead: a prayer by Billy Graham

'Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, 'Woe to those who call evil good,' but that is exactly what we have done. We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values.

We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery. We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare. We have killed our unborn and called it choice. We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.

We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self esteem. We have abused power and called it politics. We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition.

We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression. We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment. Search us, Oh God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and Set us free. Amen!'

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Ghosts

Once upon a time young boys went off to war.
We were going to do what we had always pretended; boy soldiers in the woods with wooden guns who, when they fell, would miraculously rise again to fight another battle.

Once upon a time we were invincible and nothing could touch us. We were bullet proof and deadly.

But when the time came, we found that we were all too human and our friends would fall, but there would be no rising to fight another battle. The guns were not wood, the enemy had no honor and dead is forever.

Someone asked me a question the other day, they asked me if it was all worth it, the war. I couldn't answer for a while, and I got all choked up. How do you answer someone whose only source of information is CNN? Do I think for a minute that the lives of 10 Iraqi's were worth one of any of the finest young men I have ever had the privilege of serving with? NO!

But I do believe we helped put an end to a tyrant who would see the genocide of a nation. I believe freedom is not a right to be enjoyed by Americans only. I believe we accomplished a goal that needed accomplishing. With that firmly in mind I believe I don't want to think about Iraq any more. Yet I know this is not possible.

I do not pay attention to the news. I gladly share my opinions when asked. The war will always be a part of me, it is part of who I am.

With memorial day approaching I think about my friends that fell and I make sojurns to their graves. But more, I think about the ones still here. I see them from time to time, the ghosts of my old friends; men now and not the boys we were. I bump into them at the bar and talk to them on the phone. We each fall off the grid for a while and then a sighting is made...

My [almost] 2 year old just walked up and lifted his hand towards me for a high-five, then ran off giggling. A smile tugs at the corner of my mouth.

It was a long journey. I am glad to be back. The clouds will open and the sun will shine. Life will go on. Out of my sorrow rises peace, because I know we have all made the world a little bit better. I can only hope our sacrafices mean something to the next group of young boys.

I think about my experiences daily, but mostly I think about this:

Once upon a time young boys went off to war, and in many ways we are still there.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Book in the making...forever

Recent posts have been born of frustration and stress. It is sad to see myself only posting the negative all the time. It gives the impression that I'm some bitter conspiracy theorist in the hills, preparing for government take over and plotting the best course of action to make sure my children remain in a free country. Well I have news for you...I'm not bitter!

Actually I wanted to give an update on my book. I've been back on what, for the time being, is still free American soil, for almost 3 years already! Woo hoo! I must also mention that I am officially out of the military after 9 years of service! For that I am very excited.

Okay, the book. 3 years and I have 18 pages to show. I have been BUSY. Job job job, work work work, family family family, moving, new job, new house, settling in, job job job, work work work. Get the picture? Whew, I sure do.

So, I put my Iraq adventure on hold, started a piece of fiction, and have been going back and forth between the two. I found it difficult to try and piece together a play by play of the events that led up to Iraq and a time-line while we were there. So instead, I will have my 18 page introduction dedicated to the events leading up to Iraq. I am then going to take 10-20 stories in some sort of order, mine and my friends, and turn each story into a big chapter. Hopefully this new line up will assist me into an easier format so I can finish this book once and for all.

I had hoped to make more progress over this past winter, but remodel projects all fall and a move in January didn't help things any.

There you have it for those dedicated fans still out there!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Health Care, what else?

For the first time in American history the Federal Government will order the American people to buy something no matter if we want it or not, and if we refuse, we pay a fine.

The Federal Government derives it's power from the people. The majority of Americans DO NOT WANT this health care that was just signed into law. The Federal Government is authorized to engage in commerce, to engage in war, to issue patents, to levy and collect taxes, establish post offices and roads. NOT to force us to pay and penalize us for something we do not want.

Thomas Jefferson said, "I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them."

At the moment a lot of Americans are unhappy. The other side is saying that health care is a "right." Though I would contend this, lets suppose it is... that does not mean we should be forced to buy it. I have a right to keep and bear arms, but I am not forced to buy a gun. I have the right to freedom of religion, but the government can't force me to go to church. I have a right to many things, but nowhere is that right imposed on anyone...until now.

I will be forced through taxes and also directly from my back pocket to pay for those that cannot or will not. In the words of Karl Marx -- by taking from citizens "according to their ability" and giving to others "according to their needs." This has NEVER worked. Not in Canada, Germany, England or anywhere else!

Does that now mean we are subsidizing smokers, drug abusers, and dare devils? To quote a journalist, "Should the working young and low-income workers subsidize the health care costs of those who are wealthier and sicker?"

If this is such a good thing as many claim, then why aren't our fearless leaders going to be on this same healthcare plan?

This giant shove into socialism will end badly. But then again, we're due for a civil war.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Welfare

Did you know that in the state of Minnesota, if you know all the ins and outs, you can make nearly $40,000 if you are on full blown welfare? (This is inclusive of housing, food allotment, cash allotment, medical etc. not to be taken as every single person gets this full amount either, just that it IS possible if you know what to do).

Did you further know that the great state of Minnesota has no residency laws? This means you can move into Minnesota from a different state without ever contributing a penny to our tax base, and the next day have full welfare money coming in.

Furthermore, there is no cap on how much welfare you can receive. You could in fact, start welfare at age 18, and continue on it until the day you die. This is (I know for a fact) some children's goal in life. When I asked a girl once what her plans were after high school she said, "Get pregnant and go on welfare like my mom." Now THAT is inspiring.

So what to do about our current budget problem? I say start by cutting welfare in half. Put up a maximum dollar amount you can draw from the system. Implement job training instead of money draining. Have a minimum residency clause of say...a year and a day, MINIMUM. And if you have never worked an actual job you cannot be on welfare.

A little callus? How about a little bit of reality? I'm tired of supporting YOU! I despise socialism and I am sick of someone else spreading my wealth around.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

What if...

What would happen if parents were actually parents?

I have to believe that many of the problems we see in society today is do to a severe lack of responsibility in parents.

Every day I talk to parents who blame schools, who blame law enforcement, religion, circumstance, neighbors....they will blame everyone except themselves.

Understandably some parents have no role-models in the first place and therefore have no idea how to be a parent. However, this does not negate the responsibility of a parent. Instead of watching television, is it beyond reason that one could take interest in their child's life?

Instead of playing that card game or going ice-fishing...could one not spend quality time with their child?

Instead of living the night life and trying to regain some "lost youth" at the bar, why not spend time getting to know your kid?

Sometimes I look at life as black and white and refuse to look at the gray, so forget all of the above. Random thought, how about we take off the kid gloves, get a judicial system not clogged with red tape and actually do something about the parents that think it's a good idea to beat their 10 month old with a coat hanger....? Instead of letting them off on a reduced sentence, or giving them a not-guilty based on a technical error...what if we actually did something about it?

Thank God for the good parents out there.

It's late, I'm going to bed, and at the moment, I'm just a little frustrated.