President Obama and guns and Lance Armstrong, lying cheat
Did President Obama (who just took the official oath on this Sunday) take your guns yet? Did he sneak into your house and take all your guns? Not just if you have an AR-15, which he will take of course. But all of them, including that antique musket that your great, great, great-grandfather used to fight the Civil War.
Of course I am being sarcastic. President Obama does not want to take away the guns of Americans, though if you listen to right-wing talk radio or read their columns, you would be forgiven for thinking such a thing. He wants to ensure that violent criminals can't just walk into a gunshow and buy a gun from a non-federally licensed dealer. By the way here in Wisconsin there is no mandatory background check. That might be something you may want to call your state legislators about.
I like former Senator Feingold, believe in a right to bear arms, and I am on the left. I don't believe in a narrow reading of our Constitutional rights, including the right to have a weapon. But, I don't want severely mentally ill people who pose a known physical danger, and violent criminals, getting weapons.
There is a right-wing talk show host who I have listened to who believes that people like me think that guns by themselves just go out and kill people. I and others (including the majority of Americans) who favor reasonable gun control know that guns by themselves don't kill, but I don't want certain people (as I have described) to get those guns. Just like I don't want 8 year olds driving cars. Guns are dangerous in the wrong hands and it is irrational to take the word of a violent felon that he won't buy a gun at a place where they don't check.
On a separate issue, I have been debating with mysel if I was going to write about bicyclist Lance Armstrong. See, he is an atheist and unfortunately he is a lying and cheating atheist. As an atheist, I know atheists are often attacked as immoral and unethical by the Christian right-wing, so I was wary of commenting on his admission of cheating.
But, if I am going to mention atheists who have done great things, such as baseball star/fighter pilot Ted Williams, or Bill Gates or the inventor Thomas Edison, I might as well by as objective as possible and point out atheists who not always been ethical.
Armstrong fits that bill. Just like there are those on the Christian rightwing who don't fear and loathe gays in public while undergoing gay sex scandals, there are atheists like Lance Armstrong. The difference with atheists though, unlike Christians, is we can't say a deity forgives us for our mistakes. We actually have to get forgivness from our fellow human beings.
Oh, before I forget, have a happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day this Monday. Dr. King was a great man but the day of course isn't just about him. It is also about the millions of other Americans who fought, and sometimes died, for civil rights. I bet you didn't know that two of the most influential men were either atheists or gay. Bayard Rustin was a gay man, persecuted and imprisoned for the imaginary crime of sodomy, who advised Dr. King and was a chief organizer of the March on Wasington.
A.Philip Randolph was an atheist and humanist civil rights leader who was instrumental in the civil right and labor movements before Dr. King. Will we one day have a national Harvey Milk Day to honor the great gay civil rights leader Harvey Milk, who was also shot to death? Maybe, some day.