A Tosa resident since 1991, Christine walks the dog, cooks but avoids housework, writes and reads, and enjoys the company of friends and strangers. Her job takes her around the state, learning about people's health. A Quaker (no, they don't wear blue hats or sell oatmeal or motor oil), she has been known to stand on both sides of the political and philosophic fence at the same time, which is very uncomfortable when you think about it. She writes about pretty much whatever stops in to visit her busy mind at the moment. One reader described her as "incredibly opinionated but not judgmental." That sounds like a good thing to strive for!
Last Saturday night was a night nobody died in the streets outside the Wisconsin State Fair grounds.
The story might have been different. And all around the conservative blogosphere, people are wishing it had been.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett's decent, courageous, and I think ordinary response to a woman's cry for help is being spun as a call to arms. Those who can't resist the cheapest shots are generating mock "kumbya" moments for the mayor and his assailant. If you can't get at someone with the truth, just make it up seems to be the order of the day.
The most frequently quoted comments come from The Agitator, who wrote "Second amendment loathing mayor attacked with lead pipe." And now Barrett will forever be the "second amendment loathing mayor" in some circles.
Of course, there's nothing to that. Barrett is opposed to conceal carry in the city and has said "There’s a fundamental difference between carrying gun in Vilas County on your own land and carrying an AK-47 or Uzi to watch the Circus Parade in Milwaukee.” Many of us would agree.
Barrett was beaten up pretty badly. But with the help of good hand surgeons, plastic surgeons, and cosmetic dentistry, he'll be okay. His assailant will go to jail. Maybe he'll get mental health services there. Maybe people will stop saying "it's just a domestic dispute" when a violent and unstable parent threatens his child's protectors.
And because neither party used a gun, nobody's in the morgue. That's a good thing.
When people think of guns as easy solutions, you get crazies yelling about shooting Wauwatosa employees coming to the door -- and the mayor too. And you get irresponsible headlines suggesting that the threat was a serious one. Do we need to be armed when we patronize businesses on Center Street because who knows what the shopkeepers are up to? That's nonsense, of course.
Like Barrett, I respect the Second Amendment. But it was put in place to allow people to protect themselves against the government, not to allow people to settle personal disputes in the streets.