Walking To New Orleans: Goodbye, Fats Domino

I can't remember if it was a birthday or a Christmas present, but the first brand-spanking-new LP I ever owned was a compilation album with a decidedly cheesy cover, but an absolutely brilliant selection of tracks, entitled Let The Good Times Roll.

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FNIMN: Moustache

Several months ago, this, erm, thing colonised my upper lip and I didn't have the heart to send it packing. I'm still not completely convinced it should be given a permanent home, but it's been long enough that I can hardly claim it's temporary any more.

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Harken unto the words of the Mango Mussolini:

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One Hundred Years After Balfour

A video by Independent Jewish Voices, marking the upcoming one-hundredth anniversary of the Balfour Declaration. I think the film pretty much speaks for itself.

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Gun Control: A Petition

Unfortunately, only those who live in the USA may sign this one. (I tried, and got told I don't have a valid zip code.) But if you do, please do.

Emergency petition: Thoughts and prayers are not enough. We need gun control now.

Last night in Las Vegas, a lone gunmen rained gunfire down on a country music concert, killing more than 50 people and sending more than 400 to the hospital. It was one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history.1

Republicans in Congress – who have fought for years to block any legislation that would protect Americans from gun violence – were quick to offer their “thoughts and prayers” in response. But thoughts and prayers are not enough to keep weapons of war out of dangerous hands and begin to address our country’s horrific gun violence epidemic.

It is time for Republicans in Congress to join Democrats in standing up to the National Rifle Association and pass commonsense gun control laws that will save American lives.

Tell Republicans in Congress: Thoughts and prayers are not enough. We need gun control now.

Last night’s shooting is far from an isolated incident. According to Newsweek’s John Haltiwanger, there have now been “273 mass shootings and over 11,000 deaths from gun violence in America” in 2017 alone.2

But instead of working to protect Americans from the gun violence epidemic, Republicans in Congress are planning to vote as soon as this week on two bills that would make Americans even more vulnerable to gun violence:

  • The SHARE Act (H.R. 3668), which would repeal restrictions on gun silencers and make it harder to detect the source of gunfire during mass shootings.3
  • The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act (H.R. 38), which would undermine state efforts to protect residents from gun violence by forcing states to recognize concealed carry permits issued by any other state, no matter how lax the state’s permitting standards are.4

We must forcefully demand that Congress reject both of these dangerous pieces of legislation and take immediate action to ban weapons of war, including assault weapons and large capacity magazines. Please add your name to our emergency petition now.

Tell Republicans in Congress: Thoughts and prayers are not enough. We need gun control now.

Stephen Paddock, the suspect in the Las Vegas shooting, reportedly had at least 10 rifles in the hotel room he used as a sniper perch.6 There’s simply no good reason for a private citizen to have access to that many weapons of war, but it should not come as a surprise.

Nevada has some of the weakest gun control laws in the United States. There are no limits on the number of guns an individual can own, and assault weapons are legal in the state as long as they are registered.5 The combination of weak state and federal gun laws made last night’s horrific attack possible.

There’s one reason why Congress consistently fails to take real action on gun violence: the National Rifle Association. The NRA has a chokehold on Congress that keeps most bills about gun control from even coming to the floor for a vote. Politicians beholden to – or afraid of – the NRA are willing to turn their backs on their constituents when it comes time to implement reasonable limits and controls on guns. But you can count on them for a “heartbroken” tweet about their “thoughts and prayers” when a tragic shooting makes the national news.

Finally breaking the NRA’s chokehold on Congress will require massive grassroots pressure on our elected officials, demanding that they deliver more than thoughts and prayers in the face of our epidemic of gun violence.

Tell Republicans in Congress: Thoughts and prayers are not enough. We need gun control now.

Thanks for everything you do.

  1. The Associated Press, “Trump says he’ll visit Las Vegas on Wednesday,” Oct. 2, 2017
  2. John Haltiwanger, “Tweet,” Oct. 2, 2017.
  3. Peter Ambler, “Gun silencers make it easier to commit crimes quietly,” Chicago Tribune, Sep. 29, 2017.
  4. Michele Gorman, “Guns in America: What is national concealed carry reciprocity?” Newsweek, March 3, 2017.
  5. Callum Paton, “Las Vegas gun laws: Open carry, concealed weapon, machine guns all legal in Nevada,” Newsweek, Oct. 2,2017
  6. Holly Yan, Susannah Cullinane and Philip Victor, “50+ killed in Las Vegas Strip massacre; gunman had 10 rifles, police say” CNN, Oct. 2, 2017

Please sign this petition.

Please do not use comments under this article to argue against gun control. It’ll do nothing to change my mind, and you’ll only be opening yourself up to frustration, when I replace your entire comment with the words “Please fuck off.”

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* is generally preferred over †

So, Barry Duke posted this, erm, thing. A music video thingy entitled I Love You Jesus, by a lady named Trisha Paytas.

That's just wrong, on so many levels—most of them involving excruciating pain.

Look, I'm not totally heartless. I may not be (as I assume most of you have noticed) the greatest fan of religion in the world, but if her life really was the complete wreck the lyrics make it out to have been, then I'm glad for her that she found something to bring it around, whether that something be my cup o' tea or not. But…

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“They Made The Desert Bloom”

It's a claim you hear all the time, that the Israelis made the desert bloom; the implication being that they had moved into an uncultivated wasteland and, by dint of sheer effort had turned it into a veritable Eden. And every time I hear it I wonder to myself, What do you think the Palestinians had been eating, sand?

As always where such claims of Israeli cultural superiority are made, however, the truth turns out to be far nastier—unless, of course, you think "blooming" and "polluted" are synonyms.

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