Dennis Farina’s gun charges

| by Ken | in News No Comments »

Last month, the actor Dennis Farina was picked up in LA for bringing a .22 caliber pistol with him to the LAX security checkpoint. (story: Reuters) His explanation: he forgot that he put it in his briefcase.

Although, I can’t find a report that confirms this, I seem to remember that he didn’t have a license for that gun. And that should be worrisome enough. But the gun was also loaded. And he brought it to the airport. What was he thinking?

The answer is clearly he was not thinking about the gun. And that’s my biggest problem with this incident. He says that he forgot he had put the (loaded) gun into his briefcase. Now, if he is lying about that and he intended to bring the gun to on the plane then a serious situation was fortunately averted. But Farina is an unlikely participant in a hijacking so his story is probably the truth however to forget he had the gun is not that much better. Responsible gun owners know where their firearms are at all times, don’t keep them loaded except when they plan to use them, and generally keep them secure. Farina may have been a cop at one time, but now, as an actor, he doesn’t need an armed weapon on his waist. (Unless my impression of the acting profession is way off.)

My point is this: If a person is caught with a gun at a security checkpoint, or any other place where a gun is not permitted, and their excuse is that they forgot they had the gun, then their right to own a firearm should be revoked immediately. Clearly they have lost the respect that the firearm deserves and have proven themselves unfit of that privilege.

Two hours of the future of the country mixed with clips of talking snowmen, it could only be a CNN YouTube debate. It seems to me that CNN is looking for a YouTube submitter to ask a question that breaks open the race. And if that were to happen, they could air stories about how one “regular person” used the Internet to affect the race. A heartwarming story that CNN could call their own. Again, it’s all about the network, not the candidates who are debating. But I talked about these issues last time.

Of course there were differences. It was hilarious to see the Republican candidates all try to prove that they are man enough to represent the GOP by talking about their experience with and fascination with guns. The my gun is bigger than your gun thing was a little creepy, but hilarious.

And since this was a debate among Republicans, of course God came up. The question from the YouTuber was “Do you believe every word of this book … specifically this book.” The author of the clip showed the words “King James Version” when saying “specifically”. I think Romney dodged a bullet by not needing to say that he didn’t agree with that specific book. Again, it’s a little creepy that the author could decide who gets his vote based solely on the answer to that question and more creepy to know that he is not alone.

Anderson Cooper was a better moderator than Wolf Blitzer was – less pompous and more in the background. Although he did irk me a little a couple of times when during a moment of civility amongst the candidates, he brought up a previous skirmish to illicit fireworks. It’s better to let the skirmishes happen organically than provoke them.

Running down the candidates: Tancredo was well spoken but not much more. Huckabee was my favorite from the debate – I very much disagree with most of his views, but the guy seemed absolutely genuine and that’s more than can be said for most of the Republicans and Democrats. Romney showed that he is the Hillary Clinton of the Republican party by saying all the right things but seeming incredibly disingenuous while doing so. Giuliani came off better than I expected; he still doesn’t seem Presidential, but he was at least more genuine than he has been in the past. Thompson was a genius at coming up with one-liners and sound-bite worthy quips and had some solid points but lacked depth. McCain was also genuine but he didn’t win over any new supporters. Paul was a force but clearly not speaking for the mainstream. And Hunter was umm.. there.

Harry Potter vs. Georgia mom

| by Ken | in News No Comments »

Harry Potter won the court battle against a Georgia woman (story: MSNBC). Laura Mallory, a mother of 2 in the Gwinnett County school system took the school’s library to court to have the Harry Potter books removed because she believes that the books attempt to indoctrinate children in witchcraft. Mallory says “I have a dream that God will be welcomed back in our schools again” and apparently, God and fiction don’t get along.

Mallory also has 2 kids that are not in the County school system – shall we hazard a guess that the other kids are in a private school? Perhaps one with a religion-based curriculum? So I have to wonder, why she loves 2 of her kids more than the other 2. How else could you explain why she sends 2 of her kids to do battle with the heathens in public school while the other 2 are protected in a private school that she doesn’t need to sue? And to make matters worse, since Mallory didn’t hire a lawyer, the only thing Mallory has wasted is her time while the state of Georgia is busy paying for her court time.

Listen, Mallory: This country has an official policy of separation of Church and State. That means that our public schools are explicitly required to keep God out. If you believe that God needs to be part of your children’s education, then you have the right to put them in a school that does that, as you have your other 2 kids. The United States is not a religious state and if you need proof of why that’s a good thing, take a look at the Middle East and the countries that are religious states there. I’ll bet you “support our troops” and probably even our policy towards the current action in Iraq, specifically intended (though obviously failing) to prevent it from becoming a religious state. Stop bothering the public schools and the court system, which both have enough challenges these days. Focus on indoctrinating your kids in whatever religion you want and let the rest of the kids in the County schools enjoy the most popular children’s fiction series ever produced.

Brad Delp Suicide

| by Ken | in News 2 Comments »

In case you haven’t heard, Brad Delp killed himself on 9-Mar-07. I first heard the news that he had died on Saturday and then yesterday, it was announced that the cause of death was self-inflicted carbon monoxide poisoning.

Brad was the lead singer for the band Boston for their first 3 albums (1976, 1978, 1986) and even sang a couple of tracks on the under-appreciated 2002 Boston release titled “Corporate America”. Also, Delp was the singer for a band called Return To Zero (“RTZ”) with fellow Boston-alum, Barry Goudreau; RTZ’s most recent release was just 2 years ago. Delp was the singer for a Boston-area Beatles tribute band. I know it sounds podunk but music critics were as positive about Beatle Juice as they can be for a tribute band. Most recently, I saw Delp performing as the surprise guest at the Extreme reunion show (shutup, it was a helluva show) and he still sounded great. I left there thinking that he must have a great life singing with all of these great bands. And that just makes the news of a suicide all the more shocking.

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