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The New/Old Wild West

Okay, the grand experiment is over. Amazingly, a black man was elected president. It can't happen again until after 2050, the projected time when whites will be officially a minority. We see what happened - publicly, white racists and paranoids found a near-infinite number of ways to avoid saying "We've got a nigger in the white house and it is a terrible, terrible thing." So they call him everything in the book except "nigger" and accuse him of outrageous things, the same things all presidents do. But when the black man does them, he's a alternately a radical, a communist, a muslim, an emperor and everything in between. Privately, the right wing message is "Nigger in the white house! Nigger in the white house!" They have been freaking out, plain and simple. None of these people made a squeak about W Bush, Cheney & Co.

We are living in psychotic times. In a medical clinic waiting room, I'm perusing the magazines. The usual stuff, medical and baby magazines, women's fashion, the occasional auto and sports. My default choices in these places are Time and National Geographic. Time is CNN on glossy paper, mainstream news and views, bland middle class fare. Ho hum.... I'm a little shocked to see the level of propaganda in a recent Geographic, there's a puff piece on Monsanto and the wonderful progress they're making in the food production world. They are of course a patrician publication. Mostly Anglo-Saxon, although recently there are a few "ethnic"-sounding names. A concession perhaps to modern times, but this is old money speaking. Try this experiment: at the end of any Geographic article about animals or people (usually primitive tribes or strange people in odd remote places), insert the following sentence: "And with the proper house training, they can make wonderful pets."

Here in Colorado, "wild west" sentiments linger on and to prove it, for the first time ever in a medical building, I see the NRA magazine, "America's 1st Freedom." The big headline on the cover - "CHAOS AT OUR DOOR? A Dangerous World is Closing In." This over a silhouette of an ISIS member holding a machine gun in one hand and a flag with Arabic writing in the other. "Your Second Amendment freedom has never been more important and necessary." So, then... When the ISIS terrorist guys come rolling in their tanks down Maple St. mid-America to rape our daughters and lop off our heads, good patriotic citizens will bust out their Glocks and Colts and Smith & Wessons and vanquish the invaders. Got that? And we'll have the NRA to thank.

Now let's open this rag and have a look inside. Here's an ad for a John Wayne Patriotic Tribute Revolver for only $2495.00. How about a nice Kel-Tec Sub-2000, a nifty little machine gun that folds down to fit in a briefcase. Today's businessman can't be too careful. And here's a Safe Step Walk-in bath tub. Are we to assume that old people who cannot negotiate a normal tub without risking an injurious fall are to be trusted with firearms?

Principle objects of scorn in the editorials and feature articles are Obama and Michael Bloomberg. A black man and a Jew who want to take your guns away. Okay... The list of NRA officers contains only - once-again - Anglo-Saxon names, these are serious Old White men. But they did manage to find a black sheriff in Wisconsin to talk about Bloomberg's "failing crusade to disarm law-abiding Americans." And in Orange County, Sheriff Sandra Hutchens has issued 700 new carry permits to "law-abiding citizens." You never know when the fuddy-duddy in the condo next door might go crazy, and of course there are those Mexican gardeners to worry about. The magic word again, "law-abiding." The message here is, if you are technically within the law, you can get away with murder.

Wayne LaPierre is there in all his glory, with a regular column, in which he trumpets the fear of losing "our rights, our freedom, and country" unless pro-gun right wingers are elected in the mid-term elections. They were. The "lawless" Obama must be de-clawed. Did you know that ISIS is the president's fault? (My inner spelling nazi notes that LaPierre refers to the Islamic State as a "monstrous hoard"). But this isn't enough for the NRA mouthpiece. He also has a feature article in which he panders to serious paranoia. We are, apparently, in danger of an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) blacking out all electronic communications and plunging the continental U.S. into darkness and chaos lasting for months, "if not years." See? That's why we all need to be armed to the teeth. It's a replay of the 50's fallout shelter fear. When the bomb hit, law-abiding citizens with the foresight to have a shelter in the back yard were urged to stock them with guns, for when the hapless neighbors tried to get in. Too bad, but you had to kill them for the sake of your own survival. Now, when the colluding Russians and Koreans set off an EMP-causing nuclear explosion high in the atmosphere, there will be no phones or TV, no internet. And you know what that means. Here come the neighbors, like zombies, to take your stuff and eat your flesh. But no, the wise and prepared law-abiding citizen with be ready with firepower.

Yippie ky-ay ki-yo, he's the toughest critter west of the Alamo.

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