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This is a test

This is a test. I want to see if LJ will crosspost (correctly) to Facebook.

The Great Quarantine of 1953

In 1953, there was a great quarantine where a disease went rampant and a hospital was quarantined but it spread so then a city was quarantined but it spread more and then the state was quarantined. It was covered up by the government so there is no trace of it on the Internet. But I'm sure I saw a story about it on Fox News.

DVDs - Free to good home!

DVDS - Free to good home!

Here's the list:

  • The Dead and the Damned (horror)

  • Coming Out Under Fire (documentary)

  • The Times of Harvey Milk (documentary)

  • Starman (scifi)

  • Queer Duck: The Movie (comedy)

  • Demetrius and the Gladiators (historical)

  • Mermaids (comedy drama)

  • Star Trek films: 1-6, all Special Collector's Edition

  • RENT (musical)

  • The Great Houdini (TV biography)

  • Date Movie (comedy)

  • Crazy (foreign LGBT)

Let me know if you'd like any of these. Donations accepted but not required.

* Crossposted from Dreamwidth.org *

Twitter 9

* Crossposted from Dreamwidth.org *

Is gun control the answer?

Gun control is not the answer.

There. I said it. I should also say that I don't like guns at all. My father was a card-carrying member of the NRA and held right-wing conservative Republican views like the millions of Fox News watchers. He often fell for the same paranoia and lies fed to him by people who believe blacks should go back to Africa, Jews control global finance, and Mexicans are taking over the country. I'm not even sure how he felt about gays, as we never discussed it, though he did accept me and my partner with love and respect. Still, were he alive to witness the tragedy and horror of the Sandy Hook school in Newtown, Connecticut, he would firmly proclaim that guns don't kill people—people do. And he'd be right.

That argument is fallacious, of course. No one really believes that guns might suddenly and spontaneously begin murderous rampages just for shits and giggles, let alone psychotic reasoning. Folks who argue about guns not killing people like to say that, even if a killer didn't have a gun, he'd find another weapon of destruction. In a horrible coincidence, the same day an insane man murdered twenty children with guns secured legally by their owner, a man in China stabbed more kids outside of a school. Obviously, Chinese citizens do not have easy access to guns. Apparently, there have been several school stabbings in China, though this latest resulted in no deaths. That must say something in favor of gun control, right? If the shooter in Connecticut didn't have access to guns, would any or all of those children be alive today?

Many of my friends are intelligent, reasoned, well-meaning people who feel just this way: remove guns from the equation to alleviate the problem of nutjobs shooting up classrooms, malls, movie theaters, and anywhere else. On the other side of that coin are many of my friends, also intelligent, reasoned, well-meaning people, who believe that, now more than ever, Americans need to be able to protect themselves by exercising their Second Amendment rights. After all, we need to be able to protect ourselves in our homes, our communities, and our lives. But look how well that worked out for Trayvon Martin.

The truth is convoluted, the factors numerous, and the repercussions critical. I certainly don't have all the answers nor do I know all of the questions.

What I do know is that America is broken. Repeated massacres in this country are an anomaly. Other countries have had their tragedies, but those are few and far between. Only China has anything similar, which suggests our connection runs deeper than China's ownership of the United States, and Americans' obsession with buying cheaply made stuff they don't need. But we nearly hold the monopoly on mass shootings. Heck, there was a week or two last year that one was occurring every day. Abroad, non-Americans feel we must be numb to them by  now, it has happened here so many times. This is doubtless untrue, despite the casualness with which one woman tweeted "Just survived my first mall shooting" after another deadly incident in Oregon a few days before Newtown. What sort of world, sort of country do we live in when we have to ponder something like that? The world and country called America.

The War on Drugs has decimated black youth, especially males, banishing them into overpopulated prisons. The incarceration industry in this country likes it that way and actively lobbies for stricter drug laws and longer sentences. At the same time, marijuana is being decriminalized by states as we discover that drug addiction, treated as a disease rather than crime, lessens with decriminalization.

Mental illness is still considered weakness in America and many people suffer in silence and invisibility. Government assistance for the mentally ill has been reduced beyond usefulness. Some live homeless, unable to benefit from medicine or therapy. Others live their lives hiding in rooms from parents who don't know, or don't want to know, that their children are reaching a breaking point.

The Media magnify crime and horror and death by broadcasting the worst of the worst crimes and tragedies at the head of the news. And when stories like Newtown hit, networks go all out to broadcast the bloodbath for hours, even days. While claiming they don't wish to bring attention to the man who committed the atrocities, newscasters do exactly that by repeating and rehashing the crime, flashing photos of crying children, destroyed adults, facts and figures. The meme improperly credited to Morgan Freeman said that endless coverage of twenty children dying will lead the next spree killer to aim for a daycare center or a maternity ward. Of course, we already had a mass killing at a daycare center when Timothy McVeigh blew off the front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma all those years ago. And he didn't bother with guns. Terrorists like McVeigh and those from around the world are unintentionally glorified through repeated and redundant reporting leaving Americans to believe death lingers around every corner, even though the chances of dying in a terrorist attack are tremendously less than the chances of dying in a car accident.

Fingers are pointed and blame is laid. This happened as a result of taking prayer out of schools. Parents need to discipline their children, need to give them a good smack like when we were kids. If just one of those teachers could have carried a weapon legally, this might never have happened. His brother knew what was going on; that's why they arrested him. And next week, it will all be purposefully forgotten as Americans return to their Monday Night Football and Here Comes Honey Boo Boo.

And gun laws. If only there were laws against gun ownership. If only there were laws against certain types of weapons and ammunition. If only the NRA wasn't buying complacency and complicity. If only the Second Amendment didn't exist. One argument goes like this: You need a training, passage of a test, and purchase of a license before you can drive a car. Therefore, shouldn't the same be required for buying a gun?? Unfortunately, car operation and/or ownership is not protected under the Constitution. Coincidentally, we're all more likely to die in a car accident than by the bullet of a gun.

We all know the intention of the Second Amendment was to ensure we would be able to protect ourselves as a country rather than individuals, right? But what about making guns illegal protect citizens? Criminals already acquire guns illegally. If Americans are unable legally to obtain guns, how are they expected to protect themselves? The public would be at the mercy of drug lords, loan sharks, just about any weirdo who gets a Glock from his mother's house to hit a local convenience store, or worse. All the same, should the general public have access to semi-automatic weapons just because they can be be gotten illegally as well?

I won't even begin to discuss the civil liberties curtailed since the passage of the Patriot Act.

If you've found this read to be meandering and confusing, if you aren't sure what my point was, then you're correct. And you're welcome to counter anything I've said here. The problem is, I've already countered most of them myself. And there's so much more I've missed that also needs to be addressed until we can begin to unravel how to end gun violence in the United States. I guarantee you that strict gun laws won't stop massacres like the ones we've witness over the years leading up to the latest atrocity in Newtown. Americans will initially be left with a false sense of security. Eventually, there will be confusion, anger, and downright chaos.

It's not the guns. Okay, it is partially the guns. But it is so very much more.

* * Crossposted from Dreamwidth.org * *

Hey, LJ users...

Did anyone get a strange email like this:

Dear Bob Geise!

LiveJournal is planning to start deleting inactive empty accounts. Pursuant to our housekeeping policy, your LiveJournal account Bob Geise is scheduled to be deleted in 15 days.

If you wish to reactivate your account to avoid deleting, please visit http://www.livejournal.com and log in within 15 days of this notification.
If you do not remember the password for your account, you can reset it following instructions over here.

© 1999 LiveJournal, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

FAQs | LJ News | Explore LJ | LJ Shop | Site Policies

The weird thing is that the links to my supposed journal here are links to my Facebook page. But the other links are all legit LJ links, so it's not like it's spam or a scam. What is going on??

New issue available!

 The lastest issue of eloquent with rage will be available soon! Titled "Horror and Beauty," this is the fifteenth edition of the zine, which I started almost fifteen years ago. More details to follow! * Crossposted from Dreamwidth.org *


LiveJournal - final entry

I will no longer be blogging at LiveJournal. Despite my 9+ years here, I have made the decision to move to Dreamwidth. There really aren't that many folks here who still blog regularly (so many apologies to dendren and paterson_si who do), and I do still plan on checking my friends page. But my actual journaling will be now done over at Dreamwidth. I got my actual full username over there, eloquentwithrage. Please feel free to follow me if you have a Dreamwidth account, or stop in and read my most current entries.


I'm done.

Really. As soon as I can archive my blog, I'm out of here.
As you know (or you do now), I am currently working on issue 15 of my physical zine, eloquent with rage. I'm working on a newspaper-style article that requires a couple of "interview on the street" type photos. Want to send me one? You can do it with your cell phone from the comfort of your living room (don't worry about the "street" aspect). Here's what I'm looking for:
  • Take a headshot-style or head-and-shoulders area photo of yourself looking concerned, annoyed, or just goofy.
  • Try not to look directly into the lens.
That's really it! Then all you have to do is post the photo on my eloquent with rage Facebook page (not my personal Facebook page). Please note that posting the self-portrait here gives me permission to use the photo and assures me that no one else has claim on said photo (legal mumbo jumbo). I will chose two to four of the photos for use in ewr15.

Thanks, and have fun with it!