Dissent Is Patriotic

‘Straight laced’ society has long embraced the tired, stodgy concept that in order to be a patriotic American you must meet a certain moral criteria and never “rock the boat.”   A reminder to the square community, this country was established with ideals that encompassed a diametrically opposing attitude to conformity; the attitude of rebellion and revolution.  Sure, early America wasn’t perfect, we’re a fundamentally flawed species and perfection is just simply out of reach, but new hope did emerged from this attitude.

As Frank Zappa said, “without deviation from the norm, progress in not possible.”   What this means, in the sense of progress, is that our country, our civilization, as a vessel requires fuel to move forward.  This fuel is dissent; it is the flames of discontent.  Conformity, silence or fear doesn’t move anything, it generates stagnation.  It is the fiery passion of people who stand up, fight back, and voice their opposition that drives civilization forward.

Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re ‘Un-American’ because your new ideas don’t match their antiquated ones.  Dissent is Patriotic!

Are We Alone In The Universe?

The idea of extraterrestrial life has always sparked controversy and debate.  In the 16th Century, Giordano Bruno was arrested and executed during the Roman Inquisition, essentially for claiming the existence of an infinite Universe and other worlds.  The Roman Catholic Church considered the mere idea of worlds existing, with life, outside of our planet to be ‘blasphemy.’  Many have been persecuted, imprisoned, martyred, executed, or tortured throughout time for having beliefs outside of what was considered the expected norm.   Thank God we live in the 21st Century and people are a lot more enlightened now, right?

Let’s look at this question in a practical matter.  Are we alone in the Universe?  Unfortunately, due to the staggering vastness of space, we simply do not have that information or the evidence to prove that we aren’t alone.  The same vastness, however, offers us the probability that we likely share the Universe with some kind of other life form.  Science Fiction, whilst entertaining, has perpetuated the scenario of complex, ultra superior societies that dwell many light years away, which has empowered the skepticism of extraterrestrial life.  In reality, extraterrestrial life could be as simple as microbial life, but nevertheless, the possibility of complex societies can’t be ruled out completely.

Edwin Hubble discovered in 1923, when he peered through the most powerful telescope at the time, that the Andromeda ‘Nebula’ was in fact the Andromeda Galaxy.  This was the first time our civilization was given a glimpse into another world.  Until that moment, it was believed that our Galaxy, The Milky Way, was the only galaxy in the Universe.  When he looked deeper into the night sky, he saw that there wasn’t just the Andromeda Galaxy, but in fact there were billions of galaxies in our Universe.

Hubble Deep Field

NASA’s Hubble Ultra Deep Field imaged above gives us an idea of how vast our Universe could possibly be.   The Hubble Space Telescope was pointed at a seemingly empty region of space for 4 months to gather whatever light it could.  The image processed shows that each spec of the hundreds of dots of light you see are galaxies– not stars, but entire galaxies.  It’s astonishing, of course, to understand that this region of space is but a mere fraction of the known Universe.

This doesn’t prove the existence of extraterrestrial life, of course, but it looks like our probability is getting a little higher.  Let’s go back to the Milky Way Galaxy for a moment, our home in the Universe.

Kepler Space Telescope was designed solely to discover exoplanets orbiting other stars in our galaxy.  Since it’s launch in 2009, how many planets do you think it has discovered outside of our solar system? 10? 20? 100?  In early 2015, Nasa announced that Kepler had discovered its 1000th planet, some of which are “Earth-like” planets.

 Kepler Space Telescope

Our Milky Way Galaxy, one of the 100 billion galaxies+ in the known Universe, contains over 300 billion stars, 100 billion planets, is roughly 100,000 light years in diameter and is the second largest galaxy in the Local Group.

So what does this mean? Does it mean that there are vast alien empires, like in Star Wars, in our Universe?  Perhaps, but what we do know for sure, however, is that life as we know it is comprised of only 6 different ingredients; Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen, Oxygen, Phosphorus and Sulfur (CHNOPS).  How organic elements fused together to make living organisms will likely forever be a mystery, but since these 6 ingredients are abundant in our Universe, it’s only a numbers game to figure out the probability of life existing on other worlds.

In the observable universe there are around 70 billion trillion (7 x 1022) stars.  That’s a breathtakingly large number of stars. Assuming there are at least 1 ‘Earth-like’ planets in every galaxy, that would leave us with over 100 billion planets capable of sustaining life in our Universe. And that’s just life as we know it.  There could be non-carbon based life in the Universe.

So, are we alone in the Universe?  Understanding what we know about the Universe, I would say that there would have to be some form of life out there, whether it’s a civilization like ours or merely microbial sludge living on rocks.  There has to be something, the numbers are too great, the chances are too high.  I can’t say for sure, but it’s rather arrogant to assume we’re the only life forms in such a ridiculously grand Universe, isn’t it?

 

Your Teenage Daughter Is Having Sex

There’s a lot of imagery on the internet that encourages Fathers to threaten violence against their daughter’s boyfriends. Allow me to offer some perspective on this and to why that would be a bad idea.

The boy isn’t afraid of you.  If he shows up to pick your teenage daughter up for a date and you throw a shotgun shell at him and then tell him “it moves a lot faster after 10pm” you might think you’re a bad ass, but he’s just going to think you’re a douche. (And if you actually do that, you are a douche.)

He’ll have your daughter home by 10pm, you can count on that.  He doesn’t want any hassle and obviously doesn’t want the girl to get into any trouble if he likes her.  A lot can happen between 6pm when he picked her up and 10pm when he drops her off, however.  First off, you’ve just embarrassed your daughter and now she’s pissed at you. You must be living under a rock if you don’t know what teenage girls do when they’re pissed off at their parents.

At precisely 8:35pm the boy you threatened will be intensely enjoying a forbidden blowjob. At 8:41pm, stimulated to “champion status”, he’s now mustered the courage to proceed to the next level.  Your threat has not inhibited him from attempting to have sexual intercourse with your daughter, and since she’s feeling rebellious and free-spirited, she doesn’t resist his advances.  I assure you that he’s not thinking about your threat while he’s having sex with her, but after he’s finished (at 8:43pm) the thought of you throwing a shot gun shell at him will have made his conquest all the more satisfying.

You’re protective of your daughter, I dig that.  You’re concerned with your daughter dating because you care about your family and that’s admirable, but don’t make asinine threats.  If you have the courage to threaten a 16 year old boy, then surely you have the courage to sit down and have a real conversation with your daughter.

Be honest.  Talk to the girl.  Tell her your concerns. Offer some perspective so she gains some understanding of where you’re coming from. Communication is key.  If you show her respect, treat her like an adult, and truly demonstrate that you love and care for her, chances are she’ll make good decisions in life.  Lead by example, be a positive influence in your family’s life,  and be someone she looks up to and not some lunatic who threatens her boyfriends when they come over to take her out on a date. In other words, put the shotgun away and be a Father. 😉

No Comedy on College Campuses?

You can’t joke about life, society, culture, the daily human rat race with college kids. They’re just too serious. Jerry Seinfeld recently said on The Herd that political correctness hurts comedy. Comedians are saying that they don’t play colleges because the kids there are too politically correct and they fear reprisal and being labeled a bigot.

Seinfeld told Colin CowHerd, “They just want to use these words: ‘That’s racist;’ ‘That’s sexist;’ ‘That’s prejudice,’” he said. “They don’t know what the f­—k they’re talking about.”

I agree with Jerry, but comedians refusing to play colleges because the kids are too PC is a disgrace. People being too sensitive and being offended by everything should be a comedians fuckin’ dream come true. If I was a comedian, playing to a bunch of butt-hurt pussies at a college would be like fuckin’ Christmas.

George Carlin once said, “The duty of the comedian is to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately“. Carlin was absolutely right…

The fact that comedians are too intimidated by the rhetoric of college kids to even entertain the crowd is the complete fuckin’ antithesis of comedy. Ol’ Lenny Bruce is somewhere beyond the grave devastated. I can understand the common person not wanting to get dogpiled by a bunch of PC fanatics, but not comedians. It is your duty as a comedian to take any piece of reality and twist it to absurdity until it oddly makes sense again, break the molds, and take the most serious shit in life and laugh about it until we all feel better…and most importantly LEARN.

By cowering away from these diehard evangelical social justice warriors, you’re confirming in their minds that comedy is wrong and should be eschewed at all costs, even at the cost of removing the right to speak freely. It gives them, in their own sheltered version of reality, the credence that they have a right NOT to be offended.

In other words, they don’t think you should have the right to free expression. Even comedy should be banned… because comedy is the harbinger of “real injustice and hatred”. *head desk*

The fact that these people are so offended gives you material.. it practically writes itself. Don’t let the opportunity go to waste. MAKE them think outside of their bullshit, comfortable, coddled little lives.

Lenny Bruce, George Carlin, Richard Pryor, Bill Hicks, etc all dealt with harsh criticism from their peers and routinely got shit from politically correct idiots but they stayed true to their talents and remained 1st amendment absolutists until the bitter end. Shame on anyone who cannot respect this proud tradition enough to rattle a few cages fearlessly.

They didn’t pave the way of comedy for you, as a comedian, to run in fear from a bunch of fuckin’ pc militants.

Keep thinking and speaking freely, the world needs more healers.

I’m not a comedian, and I’m not sick. The world is sick and I’m the doctor. I’m a surgeon with a scalpel for false values. I don’t have an act, I just talk. I’m just Lenny Bruce”  `Lenny Bruce.

(Original Source)

Guns Should Not Be Outlawed

The Internet, the Media, and mainstream conceptualization have painted the stereotypical images of those who advocate gun rights and those who vehemently support gun control.

Gun rights advocates and gun owners are all uneducated, conservative Christians. They are also racist rednecks who suffer from gingivitis and low IQ scores. Gun control advocates are all wealthy, college educated liberals. They are also socially liberated, support gay rights, are feminists and over pronounce vowels typically towards the end of a sentence.

This is the image society has painted, and if you’re like a lot of people who succumb to this mainstream deception, you may find it shocking to discover that I fully support gun rights–I also frequently attend the symphony, have nothing against gay people or women, I’m fairly liberal, I’m agnostic, I’m educated and I own a business.  The reality of the situation is that gun rights advocates and those who support gun control are all individuals; they come from all different walks of life from either side of the spectrum. Believe it or not, there are in fact democrats who support gun rights, and there are republicans who are for gun control.  The debate has created this segregation of people; the illusion that we all fit into a certain “type” of people or category.  This is not the case.

As a free thinking, intelligent and educated person who endorses reason and logic, I’ve analyzed both sides of the gun debate thoroughly.  Realistically both sides of the argument offer valid points. Guns are indeed potentially dangerous and proper training should be administered before utilizing a firearm.  When I was a supervisor at a global freight company I would rigorously train new employees before certifying them to use the equipment. Why? Because calling someone’s Mother to tell her that her kid was killed when a forklift blade punctured his lungs by someone who wasn’t properly trained is not something you want to have to do. (Thankfully I never had to make that call, but I did work with people in management who did have to make that call.) Likewise, you wouldn’t want to have to make the same call about an improperly trained person who just accidentally killed his buddy with a firearm.

Guns kill people. They don’t physically kill people by themselves and we know it’s the bullet that does the actual killing, but we all know what it means when someone says ‘Guns kill people’.  I would try to accurately toll the gun deaths in America right now, but as you’re reading this it’s already climbed higher.  A lot of people do die from gun violence every year.  What causes the number to be so high in America is debatable, but the figures are there.  I’m not one to dismiss facts just because I don’t like reading them. The truth is that many people, including many innocent people (like family members, children etc.) die because of either gun violence or gun accidents.

So if guns are so dangerous and so many people die from them, why do I support the right to have them?  It’s quite simple really. I could drone on about different angles of the gun debate and offer points and rebuttals to the points all day long, but I wont do that.  This is not a diatribe to gun control advocates, I respect their concerns and points but I think there is something that goes beyond statistics and petty argumentation. The ultimate and greatest reason of why I don’t think guns should be outlawed is because I am a person who values their life and their freedom and I don’t think that a government should be granted the power to strip away the basic human right of self-defense of the individuals who comprise this country (or any country). The right to survival.  In this violent and chaotic world we live in, the Government taking away your right to have a gun would be synonymous with taking away your life jacket if you were lost at sea.

The right to keep and bear arms is actually really important, even if you don’t particularly like guns or are afraid of people having them, it is extremely important.

And just for fun, watch this:

Bring Some Marshmallows to the Book Burning

bookburning

Under the Qin Dynasty, the first Emperor of Ancient China, Qin Shi Huang, famous for unifying China and his army of Terracotta Warriors, reigned. Though he exhibited strategic genius, he was unmistakably paranoid of Confucian Scholars; who he believed plotted behind his back. He was said to have feared the ink-brush as much as the sword and had a deep-rooted fear of intellectuals. As a result, in 213 BC, he ordered any written works he viewed as ‘oppositional’ to be burned.  He also allegedly had 460 Confucian scholars buried alive in 210 BC.  It is where we get the term ‘burning of books and burying of scholars‘.

The earliest known ‘book burning’ was the ‘destruction of Ebla‘ in 2240 BC, and since has been marked by an element of censorship usually perpetrated by political, religious or cultural leaders. In crude terms it’s the ‘scouring of knowledge by tyrannical oppression’. After the First Council of Nicaea, which was an assembly of Christian Bishops in 345AD to organize and establish doctrine, Roman Emperor Constantine issued an edict against nontrinitarian Arians, which included systematic book burning.

Constantine said “In addition, if any writing composed by Arius should be found, it should be handed over to the flames, so that not only will the wickedness of his teaching be obliterated, but nothing will be left even to remind anyone of him.”

So the mentality was to destroy all evidence of history that was oppositional or dubbed as evil.

In the vast chronology of book burning, this seems to be the mentally shared among anti-freedom of expression advocates.

This vile, despicable act of destroying knowledge, attempting to erase history and suppressing freedom of thought and the exchange of ideas is the antithesis of a free nation.  We’re reminded by history of the sacredness of knowledge by how many times it was either erased or attempted to be eradicated from human memory.  We must, as a Nation of free peoples, never embrace the mentality that would make permissible the obliteration of history, knowledge or the freedom of expression, for whatever reason we may find it justifiable to do so.  Our freedom of expression is paramount to our progress as a civilization and to our evolution as a species.

You may find certain artifacts, relics, symbols, ideas or thoughts to be offensive and antiquated, just as Constantine thought Arius’s teachings to be wicked, but we must never allow our emotions, or our personal ideologies, to ignite the flames that wind up burning books.

In short, I may not like what you have to say, think or feel, but I certainly and fully support your right to have freedom of expression.

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