It made my day!
Well done Florida. The USA has at least one state where they are reinstating the citizen's right to own and use a firearm for self defense. In October, a "stand your ground" law came into effect in Florida, that removes the duty of a person faced with an attack or threat to retreat where possible without using force. The new law allows the use of deadly force for protection so long as it is in a place that the person has a right to be, such as their home, business or the public street. It also gives protection against prosecution as long as the person shot is not a police officer. Makes sense, doesn't it?
Well, how do you think the anti-gun activists reacted? They had a tantrum of course. And the result of that tantrum was to try and punish Florida's tourist industry by distributing paranoid leaflets to travelers at Miami International Airport and financing anti-gun ads in Detroit, Boston, Chicago and London newspapers. The ads said it was important for visitors to Florida to know of the possibility of gun violence because of the new law and was apparently a veiled attempt to use tourism to force its removal. The organization behind the campaign is the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, a radical group that is pledged to rescind the Second Amendment and remove all guns from private ownership. Despite the group's statements to the contrary, there is no evidence that arming law abiding citizens increases gun violence, while the fact is that in Australia, after banning all firearms there was an epidemic of gun related crime including murder the like the country had never experienced. It should have been obvious to anyone with half a brain that the criminal would be unlikely to give up his gun - a point that seems to have eluded the Brady whackos.
This editor lives in Bradley County, Tennessee, and probably most of my neighbors own and in some cases carry guns. Do I feel threatened or in danger that one of them will go berserk? Of course not. It has proven to be against the odds, but if someone did flip his lid, he would have an equally armed populace to contend with. The police are armed and recruited from a community of ordinary citizens and I cannot remember any officer blasting his colleagues in a fit of rage... it would be doubtful he would survive long if he did. Why? Because they are also armed. Same goes for the military.
It has been said that a government can't be trusted who doesn't trust its citizens to be armed.
Obviously Florida's government deserves the trust of its citizens but what about the Brady bunch?
What do you think?
On page 12 you will see a letter from the joke police. Or rather, someone who has set himself up to decide for you what you should be allowed to read and what constitutes bad taste. This man called me and demanded an apology for printing a joke that made mention of a fictitious person dying of AIDS. He said he thought it was offensive to people with AIDS and in poor taste. He threatened that he and his friends would be writing to this publication's advertisers informing them that if they continued advertising in The People News they would organize a boycott of their business. He didn't say whether he found blonde jokes offensive and in poor taste, or hillbilly jokes, or Bush jokes, or Clinton jokes - you get the picture but he was very irate.
A newspaper like The People News contains thousands of words, many of which will probably offend someone. We try not to offend but it is sometimes inevitable. Hardly anything would be printed if the major criteria was not to offend. Would you believe that our regular column devoted to a healthy body and lifestyle seen on page 14 offended someone a few years back?
It would be my pleasure if the whiner in question, Chris Farlow and his friends would boycott The People News. In fact I would suggest that they are not sophisticated enough to differentiate reality from humor so they shouldn't read it. They may find tomes like Barney and his friends or better still Barney does Dallas more enjoyable - just joking - I don't want to offend anyone.
Now we get to the serious part. We live in America, and freedom of speech is everyone's right under the US Constitution, so the boycott suggested by Mr. Farlow is perfectly acceptable, though I doubt many advertisers will be intimidated by such a foolish and narrow minded man. But in any case it is his right. It is also my right to ask my readers to identify where Chris Farlow works - or runs a business .... and his friends, if they sign the malicious letter, so it can be printed to afford The People News readers the same right to boycott those businesses because they are offended. Offended by someone trying to censor what they can and cannot read.
Will I be printing any more jokes that mention AIDS?
Yes - if I think the majority of readers will find them funny and they justify the space.
Will I be apologizing for printing the AIDS joke?
What do you think? To read Mr. Farlow's letter click here.
"What do you think" Continued
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