Monday, July 18, 2016

Racism and Gun Control Origins

As the GOP Convention gets underway, at some point a plank in the party platform will be adopted in support of the 2nd Amendment, Protecting Heller and McDonald, SHALL issue laws- basically a plank against arbitrary gun control.   The GOP took the position back in the late 1860's that the 2nd Amendment applied to ALL Americans and States could not interfere.  Why then? Because the GOP wanted freed slaves to be able to protect themselves and stay free.   

This year at the Democratic Party Convention, the DNC will likely propose a plank supporting Gun Control.  Southern Demorats started passing gun control laws in the 1860's and 1870's to strip former slaves of their 2nd Amendment Rights- along with a host of others.   

Gun Comtrol Laws, beginning with those passed by Democrat controled state governments at the end of the Civil War, Gun Control, have an origin in Racist Ideology.    
"A man's rights rest in three boxes: the ballot box, the jury box, and the cartridge [ammo] box." -Frederick Douglass, 1867

It was because of the "black codes" passed after the Civil War that the 14th amendment  was proposed and then passed.   One of the stated goals of passage was to protect the right of African-Americans to possess and carry firearms for thier own defense.  
'The black man has never had the right either to keep or bear arms,' and that, until he does, 'the work of the Abolitionists was not finished.'"  -Frederick Douglass, May 10, 1965 

Now, according to  a Pew Research Study, 54% of African-Americans view gun ownership in a positive light.  It is also being viewed as a matter of Civil Rights 

This is not a new phenomenon.  Dr Martin Luther King Jr. Applied for and was denied a concealed carry permit.  The best argument for SHALL ISSUE laws is it helps remove human  factors- such as racism - from the process.   If you are old enough and meet background requirements you cannot be denied- as Dr. King was.

It is well worth reading Associate Justice Clarence Thomas' opinion in McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 742 (2010) on the Second Amendment, its history, and racism.   The Washington Post called it "...a scorcher of an opinion that reads like a mix of black history lesson and Black Panther Party manifesto..."  

(I am not going to cite MTV as a source here, but I am going to provide a link to an interesting article on MTV on the Racist origins of Gun Control).

The bottom line is Gun Control has origins in post-Civil War racisim.  But, the Constitution, and our laws as American must and should be absolutely color-blind or there will never be real Freedom and Justice for all.

Reference Links:


Thursday, July 14, 2016

ISIS Attack on Nice and Article 5

At what point are we going to realize ISIS is a Clear and Present Danger to all freedom loving peoples?  Not just the French, the British or the US.

It should be clear by now that ISIS just wants to kill.  This is not an attack because of support of Israel or because "troops desecrated holy soil" by allowing women to drive in Saudi Arabia.  There is NO other reason for this attack other than to kill indiscriminately. 

The last attack woke the French up and they began to fight back.  I have never been one to praise the French but I was impressed with their actions after the last attack.

I hate to say it,  but perhaps it is time for France to call for a meeting of the North Atlantic Council and declare this an Article 5 attack. 

Unfortunately I do not sit on the NATO Council.  All I can do is point to the words of 'La Marseillaise' and give my endorsement to any military action the French may take.

La Marseillaise

Allons, enfants de la Patrie
Le jour de gloire est arrivé!
Contre nous, de la tyrannie
L'étendard sanglant est levé
Entendez-vous dans les campagnes
Mugir ces féroces soldats?
Ils viennent jusque dans nos bras
Égorger nos fils, nos compagnes!

Aux armes, citoyens!
Formez vos bataillons
Marchons, marchons!
Qu'un sang impur
Abreuve nos sillons!


Monday, July 4, 2016

An Anniversary of a Fight for Freedom

Sunday, July 4, 1976 was a day of celebration throughout the United States. I was eight years old. I remember the bicentennial coins that were issued and collecting the new quarters and even the new silver dollars that were released.   Flags were flying everywhere. I remember a special flag with 13 stars in the blue field and the white number '76 that were being flown for this particular occasion. Patriotic hymns were sung that morning in church services across the nation and that night brilliant firework displays lit up the sky.  This was in celebration of the bicentennial of our Declaration of Independence. It was a celebration of freedom for a nation. The celebration was tremendous.

What the majority of Americans did not know, was about another celebration taking place that very same day, several thousand miles across the Atlantic and Mediterranean; across the world from the United States.  It was a celebration taking place on the tarmac of Ben-Gurion International Airport.  This celebration was also a celebration by an entire nation about freedom. But this celebration was specifically about the freedom of 102 people- mostly Israelis and the crew of a French airliner- who had been hijacked a week before. 

On June 27, 1976, Air France 139 from Tel Aviv to Paris via Athens, Greece, was hijacked by members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.  

After leaving Tel Aviv, the plane headed to Athens Greece, for a scheduled stop.  The aircraft, an Airbus A-300, boarded an additional 58 passengers, including the hijackers. All told, 246 passengers and 12 crew where onboard the aircraft. Shortly after leaving Athens the aircraft was hijacked and diverted to Benghazi, Libya where it sat on the ground and took on fuel.  After refueling and sitting on the ground for seven hours, the hijackers ordered the aircraft to fly to Entebbe, Uganda.

Lt Col Yonatan Netanyahu
After arriving, the hijackers were greeted by "president for life", Field Marshall Idi Amin, dictator of Uganda. The Israeli and Jewish passengers were separated from the non-Israeli and non-Jewish passengers (there were some ultra-orthodox Jews who were flying under non-Israeli passports or not Israeli citizens; and there were some Jews, a member of the Israeli military for example who was flying under his British passport as he held dual citizenship, who were not separated out due to having non-Israeli passports).  Some of the passengers bore tattoos from the Nazi death camps. Several would say the "separation process" was as they remembered it from the concentration camps.  

By July 1, all the passengers, except those that had been separated out as Jewish or Israeli, where released by the terrorists including the 12 members of the French flightcrew. However, in an act that can only be described as selfless heroism, Air France Captain Michel Bacos and his crew said they would not leave until every single one of their passengers were released.  They chose to remain behind.  

Idi Amin, the "president for life" of Uganda, visited the hostages several times during their stay at the airport.  Although his military did not "actively" participate in the hijacking, they certainly provided assistance to the terrorists who did. Uganda provided the terrorists with a safe haven at the Entebbe airport. 
Hostages from Air France 139 returning to Tel Aviv after the "Raid on Entebbe"

From shortly after the hijacking became known, the government of Israel, as well as other parties attempted to negotiate with the terrorists. Some of this was to buy time, although there were doubts that any rescue could be undertaken by the Israelis because of the vast distance between Uganda and the nation of Israel.  Partly because of this distance, and partly due to the "support" of Idi Amin, the terrorists felt safe.

However, in the late night hours of July 3 and early morning hours of July 4, 1976 the Israeli Defense Forces pulled off the most audacious, brilliant, and amazing rescue operation ever attempted in modern military history. That operation was Operation Thunderbolt (also referred to as Operation Entebbe and Operation Yonatan) 

Just over 100 Israeli soldiers and airmen in four Israeli C-130s and two 707s flew, mostly under radar coverage at low altitude, from Israel, south and over Lake Victoria to the airport at Entebbe, Uganda.  The 29 man "Assault Unit" led by Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan (Yonatan) Netanyahu hit the terminal where the hostages were held. 

All of the terrorist were killed. Three hostages were killed in the crossfire during the gunfight between the Israelis and the terrorists.  

As the rescued hostages were being led to an awaiting C-130, a Ugandan soldier opened fire from the airport control tower, wounding five Israeli soldiers and killing the only Israeli soldier to die in the operation, Lt Col Netanyahu. Jonathan ("Yonni") had been born in New York. At the time of the operation his father was a professor at Cornell University. He was survived by two brothers, Iddo and Benjamin- the current Prime Minister of Israel. 
Hostages from Air France 139 returning to Tel Aviv after the "Raid on Entebbe"

There were other casualties as a result of this operation. Dora Bloch, a 75-year-old grandmother, who held both Israeli and British citizenship had been taken to the hospital days before the raid after choking on a chicken bone. She was recovering in the hospital at the time of the raid, and had been visited in the hospital before the raid by the British Consul. Sometime after July 4, officers of the Ugandan military went into her hospital room, dragged her from her bed and executed her. Her remains were discovered in 1979, after Idi Amin had been deposed. Her body was returned to Israel for burial.

Kenyan Minister of Agriculture Bruce MacKenzie also became a fatality of this operation.   Because of the great distance between Israel and Uganda, part of the success of the operation lay in finding a place in Africa where the aircraft could refuel for their return flight home. Minister MacKenzie persuaded the Kenyan president to allow the Israeli Air Force access to the Nairobi airport. He was also instrumental in granting the Mossad access to the airport in Nairobi for intelligence gathering prior to the operation. Because of this Idi Amin ordered Ugandan agents to assassinate McKenzie. He was killed by a bomb on May 24, 1978.  Director of the Mossad, Meir Amit, had a forest planted in Israel in MacKenzie's name to honor what he had done to help assure the success of the operation.  

Coming four years after the disaster in Munich, this operation showed how a small, intensely well trained, special forces group could deal with a near "impossible" hostage situation. The operation was so successful that several countries, including the United States, very quickly developed special operations teams based on this model, that was demonstrated so well in Entebbe. 

Today, July 4, 2016, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was in Entebbe, Uganda, in what must be a "bitter-sweet mission" for him personally.  On the one-hand he is there to commemorate the victory of the IDF and the rescue of people who were kidnapped and threatened with death solely for their religious beliefs and nationality- for being Jews.  On the other hand, he is there to mark the place and moment his brother died to save others.  

This raid, which occurred 40 years ago today, has often been called the "Miracle at Entebbe." The use of the word "Miracle" usually denotes involvement of God's hand in the outcome. 

In this case, I believe, "Miracle" is right.


Saturday, July 2, 2016

Death of a Man Who Made Sure We Would Never Forget

Elie Wiesel, winner of the Nobel Prize, died at 87- he also bore a tattoo on his arm "A-7713." 

Elie Wiesel

After being liberated from Buchenwald at age 16, he spent much of his life working to make sure the holocaust would never be forgotten. 

Alav hashalom


Friday, July 1, 2016

Not Happy Fourth - Happy Independence Day (annual repost)

"We hold these truths to be self evident..."

Several times already this week, I have heard something that bothers me. It is not "spin" on particular legislation. It is not the latest theory of why a Justice voted the way he or she did. It is not an interpretation of some obscure policy or Executive Order.

It is being wished a "Happy 4th of July"
"...that All men are created equal..."

Over the years, it seems to me that almost every one of our Holidays has lost some of its meaning. Merry Christmas has been replaced by Happy Holidays in an effort to become more "sensitive" and "politically correct." Thanksgiving has become less about a day of thanks and time with family and more about looking at the store ads, who is opening when for Black Friday, and what is the plan to make the most of the biggest shopping day of the year. Memorial Day has ceased to be a day where we remember the fallen, or visit the graves of the departed, and has become "the Official Launch of Summer."

Unfortunately, as have gone these aforementioned days, so is going Independence Day.
"...and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights..."

Of all Holiday's on the American Calendar, Independence Day is unique. With Independence Day, no American can complain of "religious" overtones as they do with Christmas and for a few Thanksgiving. It is not about whether one supports the Troops or necessarily remembering those who gave "the last full measure of devotion." It is not a day where we celebrate our right to freely assemble and associate ourselves with others like us to demand concessions in the workplace (Labor Day- for those who have forgotten the original intent of that day as well). Nor is it a day set aside for the celebration of the foundations of Christianity.

Rather it is the day we set aside to Celebrate the declaration of those Rights that include our Freedoms to Celebrate or Protest all other Holidays.
"...that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness..."

Independence Day is just that…the day where we celebrate our Independence. Recently, a radio show I listen to was talking about the US Citizenship test that immigrants are required to pass before they become citizens and how many natural born Citizens would fail that test. That conversation caused me to question how many know what it is we celebrate on Independence Day.
"...That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the Consent of the Governed..."

We are not celebrating the beginning of the Revolution- that began in 1775. We are not celebrating the birth of our Republic, as the Republic was not truly formed until the Constitution was ratified in 1789. We are not even celebrating the founding of our Government, for it can well be argued that our first Government, under the Articles of Confederation, was a dismal failure. Most surprising of all, we are not even celebrating the day when the Continental Congress voted to Declare Independence from the Crown (John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail after the vote to declare independence, “The second of July 1776, will be the most memorable epocha in the history of America. I am apt to believe it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival”). New York did not approve the Declaration until July 19, 1776, and the actual signing (for most of the signers) was on August 2, 1776.
“...That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it..."

We celebrate Independence Day on July 4th because on that day the final wording was approved, and the document was sent to be printed and distributed to We the People.

Independence Day is about Freedom. It is about Self-Evident Freedoms which are Endowed to us by our Creator-not given to us by Man. It is about those freedoms which are both Enumerated and Unenumerated in our Constitution and exercised each and every day by each and every one of us, no matter our Political, Religious, or other affiliations.
“...But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security..."

It is about the hundreds of thousands who shed their blood and gave their lives, to fight for the very freedoms we exercise when we disagree with each other and our Government. It is about Celebrating the right to express ourselves and our differences.

And yes, it is about Celebrating the Freedom to say, “Happy 4th of July” instead of “Happy Independence Day.”

Gone are the days when Independence Day was "commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty;" when the day was celebrated by the whole town, gathering in the square, listening to a reading of the Declaration of Independence; A day "solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other."
“…That these united Colonies, are and of Right ought to be, Free and Independent States…"

But the reason for our celebrations remain, the Divine and Self-Evident right, endowed to us by our Creator, to be Free and Independent.

So the next time someone wishes a “Happy 4th,” reply, “Happy Independence Day”
“…for support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes , and our sacred Honor.”


Thursday, June 30, 2016

A Healthcare Alert for ALL my Readers

It is not often that I provide unsolicited health warnings to the readers of "The Carden Chronicles" or to my friends on Facebook but today is the eve of an important day in Medicine and I am led to make such a warning.

I will start by saying today we are all safe. There is no need to worry; you should not panic; and right this moment, there is no cause for alarm. 

But things will begin to change after midnight tonight.

Tomorrow is July 1. All over the United States, in every teaching hospital in the nation, young faces, with fixed, petrified smiles and the look of terror one sees in the face of person caught in the headlights of an on-rushing train; in brand-new starched lab coats will be wandering the halls of hospitals in great white flocks.    

If you are in a teaching hospital for any reason tomorrow- whether it be an emergency or for a prescheduled routine procedure, they WILL walk into your room tomorrow, introduce themselves (perhaps stumbling over or forgetting their name), and with perhaps a bit of nervousness, say the most terrifying words any person who is injured or ill will ever hear, "Hi, this is my first day treating real patients and you are my very first!"

For those that do not know, July 1 is the date in the United States when all third-year medical students begin to practice with real human beings- well live human beings at least- in the hospital and clinical environment.  It is also the day when all newly graduated medical students begin their days as a practicing doctor, and begin their internships.  

There is one other important piece of information that many people do not understand or have never heard before. There is a special title given to the person who graduated at the very bottom- the one who graduated very last of their class in medical school...

...That person is given the title and called by the term "doctor."

So my friends, I leave you with this warning on July 1 stay healthy; or at least avoid teaching hospitals.

Dictated using Dragon NaturallySpeaking


Wednesday, June 29, 2016

AG and Former Pres Clinton- Meeting on the Tarmac-- Why?

For many years, I have spent time writing on matters of politics, on matters of defense, on decisions of The Court, and on some occasions, matters of military and political intrigue. Since I began writing in 2001, I have done my best to be sure that I am able to provide answers to questions rather than just spending time posing questions that are unable to be answered.  

However, in the last 72 hours, an event has occurred in Phoenix that leaves me asking far more questions than I have the answers for. 

On Monday, June 27, 2016, the United States Attorney General flew to Phoenix for a planned event. The Attorney General has been visiting various police forces across the United States as well as the training academies for these organizations. This visit to Phoenix was planned far in advance.

Former President Bill Clinton was also visiting Phoenix this week. I have no information on when his trip was planned, or what his itinerary was.

However, the media has been reporting a meeting took place between former President Clinton and Attorney General Lynch right here in Phoenix. 

Now a visit between a former President and an Attorney General ordinarily would not be a matter that would interest anyone. It is after all an election year, and both the Attorney General and the former President are members of the same political party.  "Politicians talk Politics; Dog Bites Man..."

However, what is rather unusual and makes this meeting one to note, is that this Attorney General, or at least the Federal Bureau of Investigation which is a part of the Department of Justice run by the Attorney General has been investigating a presumptive Presidential nominee. That presumptive nominee, is of course former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the wife of the former President.   

So, we have the spouse of a person under FBI investigation meeting with the Attorney General of United States. This may not be something that is unusual. As a parent of a stepchild who was once in trouble with the law, I met with the prosecuting attorney on my stepchild's case. However, we met in the office and notes were taken and counsel was present. 

This meeting, between the spouse of a person under investigation by the FBI and the US Attorney General did not occur in the office. In fact it did not occur in any building of any kind. The meeting occurred on board an aircraft sitting on the tarmac of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport- and the aircraft where the meeting occurred was a government aircraft, or at least an aircraft chartered by the government to assist the Attorney General in performing official duties- and therefore was paid for by our tax dollars. 

This raises the question: Why did they meet on board an aircraft? 

The aircraft in question was on the west end of the airport, placing it near Cutter Aviation, a fixed base operator located at Sky Harbor. Cutter Aviation has many private conference and meeting rooms. Former President Clinton, because he is a former President, has a Secret Service detail for protection. Certainly one cannot say they couldn't find a room that was safe in a building on the air field. 

Close to Cutter Aviation is the Arizona Air National Guard. The National Guard facility also has rooms used for meetings and secure briefings. Certainly the wing commander would be able to find a secure room for a former President and the current Attorney General.

The high temperature in Phoenix on the day of the meeting was 116°, with the low about 90°. Both Cutter Aviation and the Air National Guard have air-conditioning available in their buildings. The high temperature was of course recorded in the shade so it was much much hotter out on the tarmac. Yet instead of meeting inside an air-conditioned building, the spouse of a person under investigation by the FBI and the current Attorney General of the United States chose to meet in an aircraft parked on the tarmac in Phoenix Arizona in the middle of the summer. 

In order for the meeting to take place in a comfortable environment (or at least one with an air temperature less than 120° or higher), the aircraft needed to have its auxiliary power unit (APU) running- at minimum. The APU is a smaller jet turbine engine in the tail of many aircraft used to power electronics, other systems and air conditioning prior to starting the main engines. 

Depending on the type of aircraft that the meeting took place on, one of the main engines may have needed to be running for the air conditioning to work.   Because the plane was sitting on the tarmac with at least it's APU running, this also would indicate that at least one or more of the pilots was aboard the aircraft during the meeting.

The meeting lasted 30 minutes according to media reports. This means 30 minutes of jet fuel was consumed by the APU, or by at least one engine of the aircraft (assuming the engine was required to run the air conditioning unit).  This also means the consumption of an additional 30 minutes of flight crew time.  

I will admit, this type of meeting is not altogether unheard-of.  In fact, I actually read about one-- during WWII. Apparently the first meeting between General Leslie Groves and Dr. Robert Oppenheimer took place on board an aircraft. That meeting was in the cockpit of a B-24 Liberator. Two of the aircraft engines were running throughout the entire meeting. This was seen as a necessary security precaution as the two men were discussing the Manhattan project- and wanted to be sure they could never be overheard. 

Since tarmac meetings of this type are so rare, the media did ask the Attorney General what the meeting was about. According to the Attorney General the discussion revolved around former President Clinton's golf game here in Phoenix and pictures and discussion of "the grandkids". Perhaps, President Clinton felt the need for the extreme security and privacy of a tarmac meeting because he was admitting he was playing golf in Phoenix in June when the temperatures was between 90 and 116°F in the shade.  Now one would think that a former United States President would be able to get a tee-time in the winter in Phoenix when it's much cooler or that at least the Secret Service- who is sworn to protect him- would have advised the former President to avoid golfing in Phoenix during the summer months, as outdoor strenuous exercise has been known to kill here. 

All kidding aside, this meeting certainly leaves many open questions- too many.  

And yet, his meeting could be exactly what the Attorney General said it was- a social visit between a former President of United States and a sitting Attorney General--where they actually talked about golf and the grandkids- and in the process wasted 30 minutes of jet fuel, the cost of the flight crew (both paid for by tax dollars) and left enough open questions that conspiracy theorists will be busy for years- so to help out and do my part to see that we don't give more fuel to the conspiracy fires in the future, I am publicly posting this letter:

To: The Honorable Former President Clinton and Madame Attorney General Lynch

Thank you for your recent visit to Phoenix.  We hope you had a plesent visit. It is unfortunate that you were unable to stay longer as this evening Phoenix enjoyed our first thunderstorms of the Monsoon season, and rain in the Sonora Desert is something to behold.  

With regard to your visits, perhaps the next time you want to have a meeting in Phoenix, to show each other pictures of the grandkids and talk about golf games in Phoenix in June, may I humbly suggest that instead of burning jet fuel on the tarmac, you might try having the Secret Service or the FBI clear a room at Macayo's or Garcias. They both have pretty good Mexican food and the margaritas aren't bad either.  

Again I hope your trip was pleasant, 



PS- President Clinton, I understand that the golf courses here are much cooler between November and February than they are on June.  I know that the courses can get booked up early, but one of my brothers had a summer job at one of the golf courses here when he was in High School- you can probably use his name when you call for a reservation and that might help you get to play when it is a lot cooler here... I'll check with him and let you know.  I heard your personal/home email server is down, so feel free to call or text if you need to.  

This article was dictated using Dragpn Dictation


The Arizona Monsoon Season- It's Finally Here

It is shortly after midnight, here in Glendale, Arizona. 

The temperature has dropped to 97° (The temperature dropped 5°F during the time that I dictated this post). Humidity is over 30% and the dewpoint is about 61°. It's even fairly breezy with the wind between 6 and 12 knots There is lightning to the north and a hint of dust in the air 

What, you ask, does all this mean and why, pray tell, would I be so excited about it?

Phoenix Sunset in Monsoon Season 
One word. One word that for every Arizona native brings a sense of hope and anticipation.  One word that visitors to the state often do not understand - or believe that it pertains to a place like Phoenix. One word that can conjure images of haboobs- dust storms like those on the Middle East and Sahara with walls of dirt 10,000 feet into the sky moving at 60 knots or more. Rain falling at rates of inches per minute- sometimes as "named" storms, being the remnants of Tropical Storms or Hurricanes like Norbert in September 2014. One word that brings up stories of arroyos and washes suddenly filling with feet of water and debris moving at hundreds of cubic yards per second, without a cloud in the sky or rain within 15 to 20 miles. 

That word is "Monsoon."

Lightning in Phoenix during Monsoon Storm 

And it appears our monsoon season has finally started!  Dry Summer* is over and Wet Summer* has finally begun!

* The Sonoran Desert has two summer seasons. The first summer season is "dry summer". This begins in April and runs through June. During this time temperatures routinely are over 108° in the shade as a daily high and there is little to no rain. The second summer season in the Sonoran Desert is "wet summer."  This season usually begins in very early July and runs through September. Temperatures are often lower, although still over 100° in the shade, but the humidity is generally higher. The Sonoran Desert receives much of its annual rainfall during this time.