Monthly Archives: December 2015

PAY ATTENTION – The life you save may be your own!

First of all, I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas, and is safely back to wherever it is you planned on being by this time. I and my family had a relaxing few days with out of town family and now are safely back home.

I saw this article today and I can’t decide which is worse:

  1. That a 30 year old was so distracted by an electronic device and actually paid so little attention to where he was going, while near a CLIFF FACE, that he fell over the edge and fell some 60 feet to his death – OR –
  2. The fact that when I read the article, my first impulse was to laugh right out loud, owing to a combination of picturing it looking like a scene from an old Looney Tunes cartoon and the fact that somehow, I was not only not surprised, but was actually surprised that we don’t hear about that happening every single day.  

Was it a tragedy? Absolutely – MORE so because it was such a pointless, ridiculous reason to lose your life. It’s sad to think that we, as a nation, actually have to start putting up signs like the one attached to this blog post, or do things like remind people that staring at your phone, trying to send a text message while also attempting to drive is a VERY bad idea.

I mean, really.

In any event, whatever you may think of the story or of my initial reaction (I’m human enough, and honest enough to admit it and not apologize for it), remember something – we need to pay attention to what’s going on around us. We need to teach our kids, if we have any, to do the same. It can, literally, save YOUR life, and the life of someone else as well! 

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2015/12/27/distracted-man-falls-from-california-cliff-to-his-death.html?intcmp=hplnws

God bless, my friends and, in the words of the guy from Hill Street Blues – “Let’s be careful out there.”

 

A note to celebrate a hero

I came across this news story and felt that it definitely deserved a place here on The Takedown. Why? First, because it puts the Boot of Truth to two lies; one, that all blacks are shiftless, lazy “gimmies” with their hands out who just want to be supported and do nothing, and two that all blacks need to rely on “the government” to help them achieve and get ahead in life because of the evil people who want to just keep them down. Secondly, because it puts the Boot of Truth to the idea that the world sucks, people sucks, life sucks, and there’s no good left anywhere, any more, for anyone. This story is one of self-sacrifice, and I believe, one of love shown for one’s fellow man.

The story can be found here: http://www.breitbart.com/sports/2015/12/19/hs-football-player-killed-shielding-three-girls-from-shooters/

To you, Zaevion Dobson, a man (for that is truly what your actions showed, to me – the mark of a man) who gave his life for others, I offer my thanks for your example, and my prayers for your family and those who knew you. May your sacrifice never be forgotten, and may it act as coals of fire heaped on the heads of those who exploit others of your race for their own gain, or to keep the fires of hatred and mistrust stoked.

At the risk of politicizing the issue, I will also say this as a rather sad footnote. It amazes me that our mainstream media, the current President, and groups such as Black Lives Matter, who are so quick to so instantly weigh in when there is political clout to be gained, an agenda to be pushed, or cameras rolling, took upwards of two days to finally say anything – and in the President’s case, to say it in a Tweet sent to his Presidential Twitter account. In the case of the leader of the BLM movement, it was a Tweet that said “My Hero.”

Wow. I mean – imagine what effort that took.

If I sound bitter – it’s probably because I am. In my opinion, this man deserved more honor than that, especially from those who are so quick to claim that the lives of blacks matter so much.  For me, it makes me step back and take a look at what the agenda really might be. I hope it does the same for others, too.

Zaevion, you died a hero. May God grant you peace.

God bless you today, my friends.

 

 

 

How can I be safe? (Dec. 7, Part II)

First off, please accept my apologies for the length of time between these two posts! Life has been busy on this end for many reasons, not the least of which has been the approach of Christmas, at which time my family and I celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, but also in that I have been blessed with an opportunity to volunteer my time at a local clinic. I’m glad for those who keep coming back to read the posts, and for any new visitors who may also come along. Thank you and let me take this opportunity to wish you a very Merry Christmas!

In my last posting (which, I say with all humility, I am grateful was received well and without the instant and manufactured ‘outrage’ we see today, in all too many cases) I spoke about the fact that we, as a nation, have an enemy that wants to see us fall. I spoke of the violence that we see happening, and how we need to be prepared and ready and not soothed by the gentle words of those who are willing to do anything in order to stay in office and play the appeasement game. In the responses to that article, a friend of mine who is a responsible gun owner mentioned that he felt it was an appropriate reason for people to begin seeking out becoming legally licensed to own and carry a firearm. While I am not only a firm believer in responsible gun ownership but, indeed, believe it is a right guaranteed by our Constitution here in the US of A, it also made me think; what about those of my readers who may be either unable or unwilling to have or obtain a firearm and/or carry one? Perhaps, because of a poor decision in your past, there may be legal barriers. You may have medical or ethical objections. You may simply not be able to afford the expense of licensing and purchasing a handgun. The reasons, really, are secondary, overall. If you fall into that category and are thinking, “Well, what can I do?” Let me answer that this way. I am in the same boat as you. I’ve asked myself the same questions, and I’ll gladly share what I’ve found out. Use what works, discard what does not. Ready? Let’s get to it.

For myself, owning a firearm to carry is something I have consciously chosen not to do. I was diagnosed epileptic about 2 years ago and, unfortunately, the same medication that I take that keeps me seizure-free also has a possibility, however, small, of side effects that can include changes to your personality. It has to do with way that the medication interacts with the chemicals in the brain. After much thought and prayer on the subject, I decided that so long as that was a possibility, I would consciously choose to not obtain and carry a firearm. Yes, I know that if I really went right off the edge and wanted to do harm to people I could find a way, as could anyone, but I would rather give people a better chance to get away from me because I had a knife or a bat as opposed to a fully loaded .45. As I said – my choice, and used for illustration, not debate.

I use that illustration to show that despite that, there ARE things you can do. You CAN, as the image says, “Be Prepared, Not Scared.” One of my favorite authors, Gavin DeBecker, says that knowledge is the best antidote to fear, and I have found it to be true. Here’s my suggestions:

  1. LEARN. I would recommend the following books which are not only straightforward, easy reads but also for me were life changing. They are eye opening looks into the world of violence and violent behavior, how to spot it and how to avoid it if humanly possible.
    1. The Gift of Fear: With the exception of the Bible, this book, written by Gavin DeBecker, is probably the most impacting book I have ever read. It deals with the ability we all have to recognize the signals our mind sends us in the presence of danger, and how to listen to them. I cannot recommend it highly enough.
    2. Facing Violence – preparing for the unexpected: Written by Rory Miller, this book is another on my “definitely read it” list. It deals with concrete examples of violent behavior, the people who show it and do it, and perhaps most importantly, ways that you can avoid, defuse and if necessary (and hopefully) get out of potentially violent behavior. For men, especially, it is an eye opening look into the way our brains tend to work when in social situations and, especially, potentially violent ones.
    3. Fear Less – Real truth about risk, safety and security in a time of terrorism: Also written by Gavin DeBecker, this book takes a hard look at the ways in which the media, politicians, and other groups use fear as a means to not only heighten our uncertainty but also potentially make us feel that only “they” or “the government/the police/the military” can protect us. It also looks at how media reports are changed and used to make them attention getting (“nothing gets our attention like fear”) when they may not be nearly as impacting as they are made out to be.
  2. PLAN: It’s as simple as “What would I do if…?” Do you pay attention to what’s around you? Have you studied any type of self defense? Make it a habit, wherever you are, to ask yourself “If X happened right now, what would I do?” Make it a point to look up from your phone/tablet and actually pay attention to the world around you and the people in it. The criminal element counts on the unobservant and the self-absorbed. Pay attention, and plan.
  3. BE SECURE: Pay attention to the security of your home/office/car. I don’t own a handgun but I do own a shotgun for home defense. I know how my apartment is laid out and where the best and most defensible places would be from which to use it and not endanger my family. When lights were out on the back of the apartment building, I pressed the office to have them replaced so that it wasn’t dark all the time back there, inviting people to break in, unobserved. Remember – YOUR safety begins and ends with YOU. Don’t take shortcuts or say “Well, that’s good enough.” The stakes are too high.
  4. IF YOU SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING: I know, it sounds trite by now, but consider what happened in San Bernardino a short time ago, and how many times the refrain of “Well, I didn’t say anything because…” has been said while the death toll is being read out on the news. Suspicious behavior is suspicious behavior, whatever the skin color, ethnicity or country of origin. Don’t be afraid of the PC crowd and their labels. If you feel – if you KNOW – something is wrong, SAY something, and make your voice heard. The stakes, even if it’s not YOUR life, may be the lives of others. Is it worth it, with those stakes, to keep quiet? I surely don’t think so.

Well – that was a bit of a long one, but I hope and pray that there is information in there that will be of use to someone who reads it. Take care, be safe and above all, remember – PREPARED IS NOT THE SAME AS PARANOID. You don’t have to be paranoid to be prepared – only realistic.

God bless, my friends!

 

Dec 7, 1941…wait..2015

Friends, I’ve never shied away from putting the Boot of Truth to subjects that need it, here on The Takedown. It’s one of the reasons the site exists, and it’s one of the reasons stated for its existence. Some may not agree with what I write, or am about to write, but I hope that it will not drive anyone away, even so.

I believe that we – not just we in the United States, but we in the world – all peace loving, freedom loving individuals are at war. We are at war as surely as the world was on that December 7 some 74 years ago when planes roared overhead at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, in what would become forever known as “a date which will live in infamy.” Being a resident of the United States, that attack holds a special meaning for me, as it represents a sneak attack upon my country which was the ultimate reason why we entered World War II. I am of the opinion we should have been involved much sooner, but I also was not there, and do not believe in second-guessing those who were from the comfort of my home 3/4 of a centuries later.

There are parallels between that time and this, between that happening and what we see happening now that I believe to be both frightening and incredible, and it is for those reasons I post this.

In that time, there was a ruthless and determined enemy that was willing to continue to cry “Peace! Peace!” while all the time preparing for war and, indeed, carrying it out. Negotiations toward peace continued up until the Japanese fleet left to travel to Pearl Harbor, and even after, as I recall from history.

In that time, it was the Japanese. In ours, it is the forces of Islam.

Before I continue, let me make one thing VERY clear. It does not make one “Islamophobic,” “a bigot” or any other of the conversation-stopping terms thrown around today to recognize that there are tenets in the teachings of Islam (not ‘just radical’ Islam, either – Islam; The Koran) that support the faithful’s right to lie, to cheat, and to engage in terror and terrorist actions against anyone not of that faith. Instead, it makes one willing to look at the reality of a situation and face facts. It doesn’t mean that every single person of the Islamic or Muslim faith is really a disguised terrorist, either; but it DOES mean you accept the possibility that, given that premise, the possibility exists in the same way that a realistic view of life accepts the fact that every person is capable of violence, given the right set of circumstances. If stating that fact makes me somehow “phobic,” then I guess whomever believes that will have to stop reading my blog. I am not one to join in the singing of the strangely American chorus of “It can’t happen here” or to believe that if we’re all just nice to everyone, they’ll be nice in return. THESE THINGS HAVE HAPPENED HERE, AND ELSEWHERE. THEY CONTINUE TO HAPPEN.  (I respectfully submit this in support of that view. I believe it explains it completely and well. The rest you’ll have to find yourself. http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/quran/023-violence.htm )

Whenever an event like this occurs, there are always those in the Muslim community who stand up and go on loud and long about how “they” don’t want any violence and “they” aren’t terrorists and “they” are afraid of reprisals and “being judged.” My question is this – why don’t “they” decry the actual violence being perpetrated? When CAIR trots out lawyers who deflect and defend the murderers of 14 innocent people in California, why don’t “they” stand up and make it LOUD AND CLEAR that “they” don’t support that or appreciate it? Why don’t “they,” as American citizens, make it very clear that “they” neither support nor condone how their fellow Muslims use the teachings of the Koran as a reason to murder people who aren’t of their faith? Where are “they,” as a community, standing up to decry the slaughter of Christians in other countries?

Remember Pearl Harbor. As the Japanese fleet left, negotiations were still ongoing. It’s something to consider.

That brings me to my next point; appeasement. In the days of Pearl Harbor, appeasement was in full swing. Post World War I, there were those who felt that Germany had “legitimate grievances” and so that excused their actions in the lead up to what became World War II. We hear that today in those who excuse the actions of terrorist groups by blaming Israel, the U.S and its policies and even climate change (!). Blame ANYTHING – except the real reason. That’s too touchy. That’s too real. Appease them and they’ll leave us alone, eventually. Notice that the ones being killed aren’t the ones with 24 hour a day bodyguards, fenced in homes and Secret Service protection? They’re the ones calling for appeasement and dodging the issue while the average person is being killed. Consider that.

There were those who admired Hitler and Mussolini, feeling that they were strong, patriotic leaders rather than brutal Fascists and dictators. We hear that today in those who take up the hue and cry of “freedom fighters” and “rebels” rather than terrorists and murderers.  In fairness, though, this is nothing new; look at how sanitized the legacy of Che Guevara has become to those who admire him and wear his image proudly.

There were those who, after World War I, wanted “peace at ANY price.” We see that not only in the US, in which we have a government that does literally almost anything it can to classify terrorist actions by Islamic persons as something else, but we see it in many other countries as well. Murder, done as a man yells “Allahu Akbar!” (‘God is great!’ or ‘God is the greatest!’) is classified as “workplace violence.” A couple murder 14 people in San Francisco and before the bodies are cold or the evidence in, it’s classified as “a gun problem” (Never mind that it happened in a State with some of the, if not THE strictest gun laws in the USA). In perhaps the most tragic point of all, there were those who saw suspicious activity but said nothing, fearing they’d be accused of “profiling.” “If you see something, say something” has been replaced by “Don’t say anything or you’ll be classified as a bigot and silenced.”

Friends – there is a very old saw that says that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. I realize that this is just a blog; it’s hardly something that is going to shake the foundations of the world, nor would I ever expect it to. However, if just one person reads it and is emboldened to not be lulled into a sense of “Oh, things are fine – the government/state/those in power can handle it,” this will be worth it. On that note, I feel compelled to point out what I am NOT SUGGESTING. I am NOT suggesting that we:

  • Begin to look at every person of Middle Eastern descent as an “enemy”
  • Begin to treat any and everyone who is a Muslim in a hostile, unkind manner just because they are a Muslim
  • Remove the rights and privileges guaranteed to every human being from someone just because of where they come from

I am advocating that we, as a nation and as a world, face facts and realize that there are people out there bent on the destruction and subjugation of anyone not aligned with their faith; and further that we not be afraid of what society, our friends, “the media” or anyone else will say if we stand up and speak the truth to those in power.

Don’t be one of those who, after the fact, says “I knew, but I didn’t do anything/say anything because I was afraid of….” Someone’s life – your life – the life of someone you love – may depend on your vigilance. Be that person. Be vigilant. Be observant. Don’t be paranoid, don’t see an enemy behind every blade of grass; but be vigilant. It is, after all, the price of freedom.