Gun violence, Chicago-style

Chicago Skyline 2008

Chicago Skyline 2008 (Photo credit: TomC)

Chicago has strict gun control laws that are not preventing 500+ homicides per year. Critics of gun control laws use Chicago’s experience to argue that strict gun control laws don’t work. That is total BS. Chicago is the transportation hub of the nation and is adjacent or close to three other states, Wisconsin, Indiana and Michigan. Guns are brought into Chicago from outside the city limits, either from other cities in Illinois or from out-of-state.

I grew up in Chicago and moved to California in 1965. I am not up to date on the current situation, but this is what I know and what I think I know. Chicago is one of the most racially segregated cities in America. Most of the homicides that make up the 500+ annual figure are crimes committed on blacks by blacks, and many whites in the Chicago area don’t really care. If the homicides were blacks killing whites or whites killing whites, there would be much more support for strict gun control laws within the state and across state lines covering the entire metropolitan area. That and only that would be a true test of how well strict gun control laws really work.

Trust

The red "GOP" logo used by the party...

The red “GOP” logo used by the party for its website (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Democracy and a successful two-party system require that both parties can be trusted with power, to put the interests of country ahead of the interests of party. The Republican Party has demonstrated recently that it can no longer be trusted. Its refusal to implement portions of the Affordable Care Act, its hostility to union workers in Wisconsin, Ohio and now in Michigan, and its continuing efforts to deny the right to vote and future plans to gerrymander the Electoral College, all these efforts demonstrate Republican untrustworthiness. The GOP must reform itself and do so quickly. Otherwise, it must be replaced by another party that puts the country ahead of partisan power.

Divide and conquer

English: Scott Walker, 45th Governor of Wisconsin

English: Scott Walker, 45th Governor of Wisconsin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Early in his term, Scott Walker told a wealthy supporter that he intended to use a strategy of divide and conquer. That strategy will be widely used because realistically speaking, how else can the 1% win elections? Without divide and conquer, the 1% would lose all elections 99% to 1%. They must use divide and conquer to have a chance of winning.

After the recall election failed, the media interviewed an individual who supported Walker. He said that he thought that public service employees should share the sacrifice that private sector non-union employees were being asked to bear. Exactly 180 degrees the wrong viewpoint and the result of the divide and conquer strategy working. Without a union to protect them, private sector workers have lost ground faster than unionized public sector employees. Now public sector unionized employees are being coerced into giving up benefits that the private sector has already lost.

The proper strategy on the part of members of the 99% is to support each other. The 1% are not sharing in the sacrifice of this recession and thanks to the GOP, they never do share in the sacrifice. It is always the poorest among us who bear the most burden of sacrifice during recessions because they lack the political influence possessed by wealthier Americans.

It is time to put an end to the successful use of divide and conquer by the 1% and their agents like Scott Walker. United we the 99% will stand, divided we will fall.

Acid reflux

English: Scott Walker on February 18, 2011

English: Scott Walker on February 18, 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Throat burning
Stomach churning
Tossing, turning
Dismal, dismal night
Pepto-Bismol night
I await the dawn
Of renewed democracy
Scott Walker recall day
For that I pray
Today I hope
The TEA Party tide
Turns and recedes
People of Wisconsin
Set an example
The nation can follow.

Wisconsin recall election

Scott Walker in 2007 at Marquette University a...

Scott Walker in 2007 at Marquette University as part of “On the Issues with Mike Gousha” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On June 5, 2012, it is likely that Scott Walker will be recalled. His campaign literature is all about the evil outside influences that are working for his defeat. However, it is only the voters of Wisconsin who are eligible to vote in the forthcoming election. They will be contending with all the campaign funds that Scott Walker has raised out-of-state. Here in Utah, I have received several mailed solicitations for funds. I sent him zip. Overwhelmingly the candidate with the most cash wins. At this moment, the contest in Wisconsin is close. The trend, though, is against Scott Walker. We will soon know whether the will of the people is sufficient to defeat all Scott Walker’s cash. His defeat will be a positive sign going forward to November, IMHO.