We learn today from the Washington Times (here) that entertainers Jay Z and Beyonce were given special dispensation from the Obama Administration to celebrate their anniversary in –of all places– Cuba.
Jay Z, a cigar aficionado is undoubtedly spending time–and lots of money–stocking up on his favorite sticks while Beyonce rocks her Carmen Miranda meets Rihanna look. (Please don’t write me and tell me importing Cuban cigars is illegal. So are tourist trips to Cuba)
Beyonce of course is the same entertainer who thought nothing of doing a concert for Muammar Gadhafi’s son in 2011, so hanging with despots isn’t exactly new to her. She soothed her conscience by given the money away to Haitian relief.
But Beyonce and Jay Z I’d like you to take a look a the testimony of this Cuban man who knows the country you’ve been gallivanting around in; who can take the measure of this country better than you can.
Manuel Martinez grew up in Cuba and fled to America 40 years ago. This is what he had to say about the lack of freedom in that island nation.
There were three men who testified during the four hour long hearing to which I wanted to call especial attention and which should be heeded by anyone seriously contemplating the issues of gun violence and what government’s role in gun ownership should be. (For all of the testimony check out my live blog here.)
Civil rights supporters should begin asking gun grabbers the kinds of questions that Chris Cochran of Gresham brought up. Cochran began by saying he has an eleven month old child. He faced the lawmakers and said,
I’m thinking about sending my child to public school. It depends on outcome of these bills. I don’t know want to send him to school where people won’t be able to defend him.
I’d like to be able to carry my weapon [in schools]. It’s sad to me that you’re trying to disarm law abiding citizens. Is there a time when CHL permit holder who went thru back ground check, got mug shot etc and committed a crime?
We should make the Senator Prozanskis, Laurie Monnes Andersons and Ginny Burdicks answer these concerns.
Cochran’s observations were supported by another man: the former Florence, Oregon Police Chief, Maury Sanders, who testified against SB 347 (allowing school districts to ban guns on campus) and said guns should be allowed on campuses because cops never get there in time. As he put it,
Active shooting situations happens too fast. I support any opportunity for someone to stop a bad guy before cops get there. SB 347 does nothing to make our children safer, in fact it makes it harder to keep them safe.
And then the testimony which was powerful but only for people who love liberty and only for people who know history. Manuel Martinez told the panel he was born in Cuba and an American citizen for 40 years. In his unwavering, powerful voice he told them (according to my notes),
I oppose all efforts to disturb the second amendment of the United States. In 1959 revolutionaries masquerading as Democrats took over my nation. They were communists, Marxists. They took away the rights of the people to their guns. Rights aren’t given by government but given by God. No one has authority to give it away. My fight for freedom will end only with my death. You people don’t know what freedom is because you’ve never lost it. You haven’t been through tortures, begging for your son’s life because all he wanted was to be free. We are open the same way that Cuba was open for communism…like other countries. Gun control doesn’t protect citizens the only reason for the gun control …government to protect themselves from citizens. In that way government can manipulate and subjugate the people. I came here for freedom.
President Obama is holding pep rallies and ferrying around in Air Force One the families of Sandy Hook shooting victims on his campaign to yank more gun rights. It’s a sad sight. Imagine if President Bush had ferried around the families of victims of 9/11 to campaign for tougher laws against terrorists. Though it would have made more sense, the optics would have been equally as sickening.
The testimony of the daughter Cindy Yuille who was shot by a crazed gunman at Clackamas Town Center in December is a case in point.
The testimony before Friday’s Oregon State Senate Judiciary Committee meeting which I live blogged hereshowed why we should sympathize and grieve with victims and hold off changing the laws on their tearful say-sos.
Here are my real time notes of the testimony of Clackamas Town Center shooting victim Cindy Yuille’s daughter who says even though the four gun laws under consideration on Friday would not have any impact on a future shooting, something must be to “show we’re serious,”
The Victoria Taft Show Janet Hasalaqua [Passalacqua]is daughter of nurse Cindy Yuille killed at Clack Town Center. urging passage of any bills that stop violence. [Weeping] There are smart reasonable ways to prevent gun violence. This is not about taking guns away, however we must take responsibility for our guns. What happened at Clack Town Center could have happened to anyone. If the shooter hadn’t known how to properly operate his weapon many more would have been killed [says nothing about guy with gun who stopped shooting] these bills won’t stop another CTC but it shows we’re serious about it. The gun that was used to kill my mother was stolen. Something needs to be done about this. it should have been locked up.
I agree the gun owner should have had his gun locked up or hidden from the murderous thief. But left out of Passalacqua’s testimony was the story of the lives saved by another man with a gun. A good guy with a gun. Nick Meli was there when he heard the bad guy’s gun jam and drew down on him. (see posts here, here,here and here).The bad guy cleared the gun, ran away and the next shot that rang out in the cavernous Clackamas Town Center was the one the suspect used to kill himself.
Worse? Passalacqua’s do-something-anything response that even she admitted would have no bearing in the shooting that senselessly took the life of her mother.
“…[T]hese bills won’t stop another CTC but it shows we’re serious about it. The gun that was used to kill my mother was stolen. Something needs to be done about this.”
She’s young (24) and grieving. I understand. But her testimony shouldn’t hold anymore weight than any one of the dozens of people who testified Friday.
She told Jeff Mapes of the Zero that she is considering using her experience to urge more gun control.
It seems to me we have enough people attempting to make gun laws that will do nothing except to harass legal gun owners. One Ginny Burdick is enough.