Editorial White-Wash

Mark TwainTwo things have been in my proverbial crawl this week regarding the use the editorial pen to seemingly not acknowledge our own history. In fact, the two matters I am thinking of not only do not seem to acknowledge the history, but in fact seem bent on the rewrite of our history, in which the ugly parts of it are white-washed under the rug so to speak. The two issues, briefly are the newest version of Mark Twain’s classic The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, in which the n-word has been replaced or eliminated. And of course, the reading of our most revered constitution on the house floor, but with things that reference the 3/5 counting of slaves and even the repelled prohibition of liquor were left out.

In regards to Mark Twain’s epic and classic work, I fail to see how changing the word makes the situation presented in the book any more palatable to anyone that would be reading it. In fact, one can argue that in his own way and as near as would have been appropriate for a man from the mid-south at the time, Twain was questioning the institution of slavery itself. I think, in my own mind Twain clearly was doing just that. I think also, just as Huck as the thought at some point that in reality, according to the letter of the law, Jim is just property, so to did Twain himself think at times.

Continue reading “Editorial White-Wash”

Save Writing

us_declarationECursive is not being taught in schools? What? So yeah, this was a bit of a conversation that I overheard and then briefly got involved in a few weeks back. Apparently, it is a trend with a lot of schools. They teach printing and skip right to keyboarding skills. I find this as a real discouraging development on my part and see this trend as a bad idea over all.

That may seem odd from perspective I suppose. Especially given that I am about as deep into the new age of technology as anyone can be. I know that personally, looking back, I wish I had some keyboard skills back in elementary school and really wish I learned proper keyboarding well before my senior year of high school.

I will admit fully that my own cursive writing is hard to read. That is exactly why I think beyond a few pages of my barely legible writing is more than enough torture for most anyone. I fully embrace the use of a keyboard, though I have never used a typewriter all that much. I can of course get things done on the computer and on the occasion when a paper version is required there are plenty of printers.

Continue reading “Save Writing”

Repeal of Prohibition

Prohibition EndsOn Friday, December 5th, just a few days ago, I found myself heading out for a bit of a relaxation to my favorite place to do so. It has been more than a rough week or two and I ready for social interaction with some of my friends that I might run into and at least acquaintances. As I entered I noted big banners proclaiming the 75th anniversary celebration of the repeal of prohibition. I was more than happy to assist with the celebration of such, especially given that I think any kind of laws passed at an attempt to morally tell someone what they can and can not do is wrong. Continue reading “Repeal of Prohibition”

Right to Bear Arms

Brown Bess The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution has been up held today in a narrow decision by the Supreme Court. At issue in the particular case was the right of residents of the city of Washington, D.C. to own handguns or not. The case was brought forward by a number of the defendants, but the named defendant was Dick Heller. His action was motivated by being a security guard (apparently armed) and not being allowed to bring said arm home with him when not at work. The case was brought forward by Robert Levy, a libertarian lawyer, who obviously felt that the laws in D.C. were a restriction of individual freedom explicitly granted by the amendment.

There were a number of other defendants in the case, one a woman who had her life threatened by drug dealers when she lead a neighborhood watch program targeting drug dealers. This particular aspect largely shows how gun ownership restrictions only leaves such weapons in the hands of criminals. Sure, the laws in D.C. allowed this woman to have a rifle or shotgun for her defense, but only with trigger locks, unloaded or disassembled. Think about the drug dealer that breaks in seeking revenge and how long it was taken to unlock the trigger, load, and protect oneself.

At the core of the issue, was the interpretation of the amendment and whether it applied to the right of a state militia to bear arms or the individual people to bear arms. I think it is clear as day that it applies to both groups and that the federal government can not (nor can local governments) take those rights away in a reasonable sense. This is the first ruling in over 70 years on such an issue and it is a clear victory for the individual. It will have an impact on several other local gun bans, such as the those found in Chicago. It is worth noting that this will likely not affect things like the restrictions on machine guns, felons ownership rights, and such as that – as just like the 1st Amendment rights to free speech, there are limits (yelling fire in a crowded theatre for instance).

(Yes – for those wondering, I went from an average of 1 to 2 posts a week for the month of June, to now 4 in less than a 24 hour period!)