Really not up for, well... anything today. We are in the grip of some Serious Dumb, friends and neighbors, and despite the bright, shining sun, I am not optimistic about our chances for smartening up anytime soon. Regardless, Work is Work, we'll knock this out quick and go back into hiding.
I'm really not into doing the News today, partly because enough of our Dumb is being documented by the press and I see no reason to encourage such behavior. Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, that day every year when conservatives pretend they wouldn't have hated King's guts back when he was alive and weren't smugly satisfied with the situation when he wasn't. Some joke that the only black activist conservatives like is a dead one, but that isn't true. They still hold Malcolm X and Fred Hampton in utter contempt.
It's also a day of massive, gut-busting hypocrisy from entire groups of people. It's either from corporate entities that can barely pretend to give a shit about the black people who make it profitable like the NFL or government organizations that actively encouraged Dr. King to commit suicide back before white supremacy murdered him like the FBI. But that's not even the best part.
Today at the Statehouse in Richmond, Virginia, hundreds of limp-dicked gun fetishists descended on the town to strut around with their unnecessarily massive guns and cosplay being soldiers while nevertheless remaining coy about wearing paraphernalia that advocated bloody revolt against everyone not to the right of Henry Kissenger. That is the best part. Anyone who thinks this date for this rally wasn't an intentional choice is far too naive for me to do anything with.
The reason they held this rally was because most of them completely misunderstood the particulars of a bill meant to address local law enforcement refusing to acknowledge state and federal law while being stirred up by far-right extremist cults to indulge in the fantasy that not only is the mean, old government (of which they control two branches and one half of Congress) is itching to take their shooty-bangs but also they wouldn't be wiped into a greasy smear if it did. Some, of course, just wanted to show off the size of their cocks. I mean, look at that clown. You really expect that guy to protect us all from ill-defined tyranny?
I've said it before and I'll say it again, I personally don't care about your guns. Have one or have a hundred, I don't care. Strap yourself with all mannerisms of "not actually assault" rifles and flak jackets, I don't care. Decided you need to go to Target loaded for bear, I don't care. The way the Second Amendment is interpreted, you have that right even though there's absolutely no reason for. Do what you wish, for I certainly will. That includes making fun of you at every chance while staying as far away from you as possible.
The "gun debate" is over and the battle was lost when some kid wandered into Sandy Hook Elementary and wasted 20 eight year olds, and up until he pulled the trigger, he was totally legal. The ground was well and truly salted when we spent more time arguing whether or not it was a "false flag" than thinking maybe such actions are a little fucked up. And then gun nuts shot up a couple more schools, a few more gay bars, and a synagogue or two. Then one weird bastard decided to shoot up a country music festival in Las Vegas and some asshole in El Paso shot up a Wal-Mart because it was full of brown people the President told him were trying to take over the country.
So, I don't give a shit. I have guns, mostly shotguns and rifles from back when my father, my brother and I hunted. All of the male members of my extended family owns guns and most of the women know how to shoot. Much like "normal Christians" should be the ones that deal with Evangelicals who want to turn the world into New Gilead while they encourage Armageddon, I think you "sensible gun owners" should do something about the fat guys in cameo toting AR-15s to intimidate anyone and everyone who thinks that maybe, just maybe, such things are excessive. Me, I'm done.
Well, I've gone on longer than I meant to, especially on that topic. On the plus side, today's circle jerk went down without any bloodshed. On the minus, it happened because the counter-protesters stayed home and didn't give the fascists a target, strengthening the gun nuts' yen to answer every political challenge with the barrel of a gun. So, we'll move on. Impeachment starts in earnest tomorrow and evil were-terrapin Mitch McConnell is already trying to slip some slick whim-wham into the proceedings, since he admitting that the Senate would do whatever got their Blind Idiot God off the hook didn't go over well.
The marijuana legalization debate is gathering more interest. I heard some of the knuckleheads on SuperTalk Mississippi worry themselves into a tizzy as some county mounties push various amounts of bullshit on the topic, and it got Momma all stirred up. It's not going away, though, and may turnout to be the keystone in the November elections, even more so than the Mike Espy-Cindy Hyde-Smith rematch for the U.S. Senate.
Again, I'm not sanguine it'll pass, even for just medicinal purposes in a state riddled with opiate addiction, abuse of prescription medications and good ol' alcoholism. One thing people don't understand about this state is how resistant it is to any sort of change. In fact, most of the vestiges of the Jim Crow era that survive to this day - the state flag, the all-white academies and plethora of HBCU's, etc. - stem mostly from a stubborn bullheadedness, an outright refusal to be anything other than what their grandfathers were. I could be wrong, of course, and this is building to a big issue regardless. We'll see.
Okay, that's enough, just one last thing. On whatever they schedule the keep for these things, the excellent website Open Culture posted this piece on the 1978 BBC documentary Fear & Loathing In Gonzovision. It's also known as Fear & Loathing On The Road To Hollywood, which makes it sound like the most entertaining Bob Hope-Bing Crosby joint ever. The piece was for the arts and literature program Omnibus and followed Hunter S. Thompson and Ralph Steadman on a trip to Hollywood to try to get the Good Doctor some cash. I wrote about my feelings on the show here. It's a fairly telling look into Hunter's mind just before he abandoned any pretense of being a journalist in favor of being a famous drug-addled wild man.
As a soi-disant writer who's accomplished little but debt and disappointment, not to mention an admirer of HST as well as a fan of mind-altering chemicals myself, this documentary is at once one of the saddest things I've ever seen as well as being an incredibly reasonable explanation for something that never made sense. Check out and read my gibberish, please. Someone tell me if I should keep doing this.