Archive for Arizona

OK to put Uzi in child's hands, but not OK to comfort kids with hugs

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guns 9 year old with UziImage via YouTube courtesy of The Independent

What possible reason could any parent have to encourage their child to use an Uzi? Despite how "mature" the 9-year-old who accidentally fatally shot her range instructor seemed to everyone involved, IMHO there is no justification for allowing her to shoot a sub-machine gun. I can hardly write about this, I am that outraged, angry, and stunned.

Instead, here are today's Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

What an outrageous display of irresponsibility at this Arizona gun range. ( “Uzi accident is fatal,” Aug. 27)

I am not only talking about the girl’s parents or the gun instructor.

More to the point, it is the senselessness of voters in this country who insist that legally possessing a gun designed solely to rapidly kill multiple people represents 2nd Amendment freedom.

Ron Landesman, Los Angeles

..

Smoke was coming out of my ears while I read this article. In what universe does a sane, reasonably intelligent person show a 9-year old how to fire an Uzi?

Lord knows I’m no firearms expert, but even I know the recoil could be substantial if the shooter weighs about 60 pounds, the average weight of a 9-year old girl.

Benjamin Franklin famously answered a question about the new nation, calling it “a republic — if you can keep it.”

Has our country’s passion for guns overtaken our capacity to reason? And does that passion threaten our liberty? I think the Founding Fathers would be spinning in their graves if they saw how the extraordinary republic they created interprets the “right to bear arms” amendment today.

Danielle Karson, Pasadena

..

Kids cope by internalizing responsibility for terrible things that happen — even if it’s not their fault — in situations far less dramatic than this.

So I have one question: How will these children (and God only knows how many more) — who, at their ages, are cognizant enough to understand what happened — cope with the tremendous guilt for the rest of their lives?

David Fritz, Reseda

..

The tragic death of the gun instructor is puzzling on so many levels. First, why was he teaching a 9-year-old to fire an Uzi? And why were this child’s parents bringing her to a range to learn to shoot an Uzi?

We all know Arizona , like many other states, has issues with crime, illegal immigration and drug smuggling, but has it really come to arming children with Uzis? I sure hope not.

Marty Foster, Ventura

..

My thoughts are with the 9-year-old girl, her family and the family of the deceased. Having said this, among the questions I have are:

When are we Americans going to learn to divorce ourselves from this love affair we seem to have with guns?

How much more tragedy must we endure at the hands of guns?

Hugo Pastore, Torrance

..

When is it ever necessary in the U.S. for anyone under the age of 10 to use an Uzi? What is wrong with us as citizens? We should be howling in outrage.

Please, can we finally legislate control of automatic weapons? There is no need for them in daily life.

This was an avoidable tragedy on so many levels.

Susan Van Buren, Newbury Park

..

The mind boggles. Most parents would not allow their 9-year-old to cross the street by themselves, not to mention handling dangerous machinery.

What earthly reason is there for putting a fatal assault weapon in the hands of a child?

Is this how far the reach of the NRA goes?

Nancy Lazerson, Encinitas

..

If I have the facts right from your news article and your Op-Ed piece, then we are allowed to put an Uzi into the hands of a 9-year-old girl, but we are prohibited from hugging her when she realizes that she has taken a human life. (“Too litigious for hugs,” Opinion, Aug. 27) 

Wayland Marie, Riverside

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Josè Díaz-Balart Meets With President Obama and Reports to All In

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misspelled amnesty sign anti-immigrant
You can almost hear Morgan Freeman, the voice of God, intoning over the National Guard that Governor Good Hair Perry saw fit to deploy on women and children, "This is NOT what Jesus Would Do, Governor Perry!!"

With a few lightning bolts and a suitable coda of thunder to punctuate.

Chris Hayes really went All In Friday evening, when he got the early scoop on colleague Josè Díaz-Balart's enviable interview with President Obama on the day of his historic meetings with Central American rulers on the other end of the humanitarian crisis on the borders.

Díaz-Balart went there, thoroughly, about the complicity of the United States' recreational drug habit in the traffic, and the trafficking, that lie at the heart of this current disaster. He is not wrong, in saying that every line of cocaine done in the U.S. impacts cultures in Central and Southern America.

His MSNBC morning program will offer more interview footage next week. Here is the first look.

Then the promised footage with Chris Hayes in the evening lineup.

Prior to that, Hayes had done a powerful segment on the actual face of the ongoing deportations, with some fascinating facts on the Obama administration's quieter policies.

Do you suppose we could trade the Statue of Liberty back to France for a working guillotine? It would take care of immigration reform and the death penalty glitches in one fell swoop.

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For contrast, perennially thirsty Senator Marco Rubio and Pundette Megyn Kelly are cozying up at Fox Noise, hyping their unique, peculiar brand of 'immigration reform assassination' that works so well over at Fvx Nation.

cheaperthanalobotomy

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Top AZ school official: Ban Spanish! "This is America! I'm not being racist."

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misspell10 no Spanish Please note the spelling

Meet John Huppenthal, an Arizona school official. A top Arizona school official. Keyword: School. Where he was responsible for the "public instruction" of, you know, impressionable kids.  Apparently, Mr. Responsible isn't fond of the Spanish language, which is likely spoken by many of the impressionable kids at the schools he oversees. Translated into his version of English that means, "You are not welcome here, brown people." To quote Superintendent Big Tent, "This is America. Speak English."

How so American of him. Give me your tired, your poor, your English Only. Your white. Your Republican.

What was that about America being a melting pot again?

melting pot

noun

1. a pot in which metals or other substances are melted or fused.

2. a country, locality, or situation in which a blending of races, peoples, or cultures is taking place.

KTVK:

Pressure on the state's top school official to resign continued to mount Monday as more anonymous blog posts from John Huppenthal emerged.

Using an online alias, the superintendent of public instruction posted several comments on a conservative-leaning website calling for no Spanish language in the state.

In one post Huppenthal wrote, "We all need to stomp out balkanization. No Spanish radio stations, no Spanish billboards, no Spanish TV stations, no Spanish newspapers. This is America, speak English."

Not offensive enough? How's this? Superintendent Racist went on to say that he "doesn't mind" if Mexican food is sold, as long as the menus "are mostly in English."

Anyone know the English word for tamale? Or tortilla? Or burrito? Or a**hole, for that matter. I'm guessing El Pollo Loco may have issues with Señor Huppenthal, what with the name of the entire chain being so unAmericanly Spanishly balkanized and such.

And how about that First Amendment freedom of speech and press thing that conservatives rely on so often, right Sup. "patriot"? M.I.A. How exactly does he justify shutting down TV stations and newspapers that fall under that constitutionally protected right? Silly me, I forgot. IOKIYAR:

IOKIYAR

Señor Gilipollas then displayed a total lack of self-awareness when he followed all of that up with:

"And, I'm not being humorous or racist."

Well, he was half right. He sure isn't funny.

All these statements were made in 2010, and as reported above, under a pseudonym. Did I mention he also called welfare recipients "lazy pigs"? Project much, Hup?

Go here for more details and reaction.

misspell8Please note the spelling

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GOP candidate for AZ gov. falsely claims to be former LA prosecutor, Air Force vet

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gop disaster zone gop candidate

Here's some friendly advice for the GOP candidate running for governor in Arizona: Tell the truth about your work experience. There's this newfangled thing called-- say it with me now-- doc-u-men-ta-tion. People can research stuff. Your stuff. So if you fudge the facts, you're bound to get caught.

If you continue to defend the fudge-itude, you'll hear about it.

And when the Daily Caller-- a politically conservative news and opinion website founded by Tucker Carlson-- calls you out on it, you might want to rethink your strategy. A GOP candidate challenged by a GOP site is in GOP trouble:

If you listen to past statements made by Christine Jones, you might come away with the impression that the Republican candidate for governor of Arizona is a former Los Angeles prosecutor. You might also think she is an Air Force veteran.

The problem: Neither of those things are 100 percent true.

Here's how her spokeswoman Anna Haberlein explained away the discrepancies: “Christine isn’t a practiced politician; she hasn’t dedicated her life to parsing every word.”

Or to put it another way, she's lacking the experience to have what it takes to be a convincing liar. She's not good enough at it... yet.

Christine Jones claimed she was a Los Angeles D.A. in testimony before Congress. But she has "never been a paid employee of the Los Angeles District Attorney Office or even been admitted to the bar in California." She was an "unpaid" law clerk for the D.A.’s office back in the nineties. However, she still swearstogod she was a prosecutor.

She also said, per the report, that she served in the Air Force:

The truth is that she was never actually in the service, though she did take part in the Air Force ROTC while at the University of Oklahoma. The Department of Defense has no record of Jones ever serving in the Air Force, according to a FOIA request provided to The Daily Caller by one critic.

When you stop and think about it, if it turns out that Jones has been lying, then she is more than qualified to hold office.

busted cartoon girl

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Rape: Unspeakable Crime, But Not Speaking Is Also Not Responsible

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rape

Raw Story:

An Arizona high school student has been arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting up to 18 girls and threatening to kill victims and witnesses, the Pinal County Sheriff’s office said.Tyler Kost, 18, was being held without bond after being arrested on Thursday, suspected of assaults on high school students between early 2011 and last month, the sheriff’s office said.

One of the alleged victims was 13 years old, it said.

Kost is accused of 18 assaults, so chances are this isn't going to be defended by a "he said, she said" defense or even it was just a "misunderstanding". This is a serial attacking that was going on. But did it have to be?

“Tyler Kost was a predator who threatened, harassed, stalked and then either forcibly sexually abused or sexually assaulted his victims,” Sheriff Paul Babeu said in a statement.

But it makes you wonder how many of these heinous attacks could have been prevented. It's a lot to place any blame on victims for the crimes inflicted upon them. But what about the attacks and brutality committed on those who were assaulted after others became victims themselves?

What is a victim's responsibility?

I've never been raped, so I can only imagine the nightmarish trauma. What follows is sideline speculation. And it's out of genuine concern for others that I have to ask why didn't anyone of these victims report the attacker? It's implied that they feared for their safety. I get it. But if they had spoken up to authorities, any of them, there's a chance that the victims who followed them might never have become victims at all.

Why is it our society fears retribution? Is it poor police procedures? Is it the stigma we assign so greatly to rape and sexual assault victims as opposed to the criminals who commit these crimes? Is it sexism? Embarrassment?

Whatever it is, there's real questions here and a bit of blame on all of us for not making it easier for victims to get through a traumatic experience with the most protection possible, so serial crimes like this don't happen. Eighteen victims. Doesn't it make you wonder what would have been had victims 1-17 spoken up?

We need to do something. Our society is to blame here. Not the 18 total victims. We have to change our thinking and stand up, be strong and support those who've had wrong done to them. It's important to make it easier for the victims to feel comfortable enough to share all the truth with the authorities. Silence just leads to further victimization.

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Teen on hunger strike: "My mom [was] handcuffed, pushed into van" by 10 I.C.E. officers

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hunger strike immigration Cynthia Diaz teen

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Melissa Harris Perry interviewed hunger strike activist Cynthia Diaz, 18, who spoke out on the detention of undocumented immigrants, one of whom is her own mother. The hunger strike is taking place outside of the White House.

Her words and actions affected me deeply, as did Melissa Harris-Perry's:

DiazI am doing this hunger strike for my mom. She was unfairly deported in May, 2011. When I.C.E. raided our home, it was a Saturday morning, I was 15 at the time, and I have a younger brother who was 13. ...My dad's screaming out, "Cynthia, they're taking your mom!" I was confused because I didn't know what that meant and so I went to my front yard and there I saw ten I.C.E. officers all over my front yard and I saw my mom being handcuffed and pushed into a van.

And then the door shut and we were really confused.

My brother heard everything but he didn't leave his room because he didn't want to see what was happening.

That was really traumatizing for me because, like I said before, I was only 15 at the time...

I was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona... I have a brother and my dad who are U.S. residents, but I didn't know until they took my mom that, you know, she was undocumented.

MHP: So you're an american citizen. You have U.S. permanent residents in your family, and you have not eaten in days because you are trying to get your president and your government to let your mom out of detention. ...

Diaz: I talked to her last night. right now she's in San Luis, Arizona in, a private detention center. She does tell me that it's really cold there, the beds are really uncomfortable, the food is not pleasant at all.

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Saturday Links

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Saturday Links from The Political Carnival

Bank of England: Bankers may have to return bonuses

Oklahoma Fox station removes evolution from ‘Cosmos’ by cutting only 15 seconds

Busting the myth of France’s 35-hour workweek.

How Well Do You Know The World? Play GeoGuessr To Find Out.

Bill Gates: The Rolling Stone Interview

Phoenix Residents Concerned Over Mysterious Surveillance Camera in their Neighborhood

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