With race-baiting opportunists like Frederica Wilson, nothing is too sacred.

Frederica

Tell me, what is RACIST about calling an attention-seeking, political opportunist and Trump hater an “empty barrel?” Does the person flinging the racism bomb know what the expression means? Maybe Frederica Wilson does now. Yet she’s sticking to her guns and has picked a fight with the wrong man.

Frederica, Donald Trump is an easy target and not worth your time, but your fight is not with John Kelly either. And if you choose to train your empty barrels on him, you will lose—and not because he’ll return fire, but because you’ll look even more foolish if you tangle with a person of Kelly’s character.

The brouhaha

Back to the original cause of this imbroglio: Trump, against White House Chief of Staff and former Marine Corps General Kelly’s advice, called Gold Star widow Myeshia Johnson, friend of Congresswoman Frederica Wilson, to express his condolences for the death of her husband, Sgt. La David T. Johnson, in an October 4th terrorist attack in Niger.

Here’s the portion of the call that inflamed Wilson: while discussing Sgt. La David T. Johnson’s sacrifice, Trump said, “He knew what he signed up for … but when it happens it hurts anyway.” This bothered Wilson and angered Myeshia Johnson. But when taken in context with the rest of the call, it strikes me as much less insensitive than at first blush.

As a veteran, I can tell you that all servicemen and women know what they’re getting into when they sign the contract. It’s not just a job. This is what Frederica Wilson apparently doesn’t understand. And it’s what many media members don’t seem to get. Serving in the military is not like volunteering for the Peace Corps. Again, it’s not just a job.

Because we know what we’re getting into makes the commitment to such dangerous service that much more meaningful and praiseworthy. Trump, in his typically ham-handed way, actually elevated Sgt. La David T. Johnson’s sacrifice; Wilson lowered it to an attention-seeking opportunity to vent her Trump hatred.

Grief is personal

The Gold Star widow says Trump’s words upset her. That’s okay. She has a right to feel any way she wants in her grief. Wilson does not. She’s a United States congresswoman and should know better than to seize on a cheap political opportunity and then double down with absurd racism claims about empty barrels.

Frederica, your hats are goofy enough—you don’t have to act like a doofus.

And now she claims that the Niger attack is Trump’s Benghazi and is demanding an apology from John Kelly for “character assassination.” And this after calling him a “puppet of the president.” Wilson is also questioning whether our forces in Niger had the equipment they needed. No, Frederica, the Niger terrorist attack is no one’s Benghazi. It’s a different animal altogether.

How low can you go, congresswoman?

A better question is this: How in the world were you elected to Congress? You’re a bigmouthed, partisan hack. And worse, you’re playing the race card because a former Marine Corps general with two master’s degrees called you out for what you are—a loud, empty-worded politician who pursues political and ideological gain over respect and propriety.

Frederica

Poor service record, Frederica

Frederica Wilson, for all her concern for Sgt. La David T. Johnson’s grieving family, has a poor record of voting against measures that would help veterans and their families.

In 2013, Wilson voted against a resolution that would ensure benefits to the families of four slain soldiers in Afghanistan would be paid in spite of a government shutdown in October that year. According to the New York Times, the families were denied burial benefits and up to $100,000, among other benefits, because the measure failed.

Wilson has also opposed numerous bills designed to improve the Veterans Administration. Instead of honoring the service of veterans and their families, she spends her time (and your tax dollars) sponsoring bills like the one in 2015 that was introduced on what would have been Trayvon Martin’s 20th birthday to press “any State legislature to reject or repeal Stand Your Ground legislation.”

Apparently Wilson is all about honoring criminal teenagers rather than those who have risked life and limb serving our country. Yet now that there’s political hay to be made against an impulsive president, Wilson is front and center and is suddenly fighting for the families of slain servicemen. She claims she has “mentored” the Gold Star widow, Myeshia Johnson.

Please, Ms. Johnson, don’t emulate the congresswoman. She’s as foolish as the president with whom she’s at war. And she’s as beneath the character and dignity of his chief of staff as an empty barrel can get.

Cali Crazy: A Texan’s take on the Golden State–part 7–Cali cannabis kookiness

cannabis

The little ol’ California county I now call home is neck-deep in controversy concerning the wacky weed. And the way I see it, the hubbub is entirely self-inflicted—like what happens when a city slicker monkeys around with a gun and shoots his dumb self in the foot.

How we got here

Because California lawmakers saw fit to legalize recreational marijuana last November, counties have until January 1, 2018 to wrangle their own cannabis ordinances in order to regulate the stuff before the state steps in and regulates it for ’em. It’s all about local versus state control. And from what I’ve seen around here, California counties need all the control they can get.

Anyways, our local county government, made up of five “supervisors” began the ordinance crafting process in good time and in good order in September of 2016. Problem is that after soliciting applications for folks to be on their “Cannabis Working Group,” the supervisors settled for five people, four of whom are growers.

Poisoning the pot

And to top it off, our supervisors defend their lopsided group by pointing out that their application process was open to folks of all marijuana persuasions—yea or nay. They say that it’s not their fault that only potheads signed on. Now why do you suppose that happened?

Is it because normal everyday folks are kinda busy … I don’t know, working jobs, taking care of their youngsters and generally going about their lives? And that maybe, just maybe, those who love weed and claim it cures cancer and wanna sell it for big bucks were locked and loaded and ready to jump right in?

Hey, there, supervisors—let’s leave off the blame dodging and butt covering and take responsibility—Texas style. Y’all were elected to come up with ordinances for all issues your county will face. Don’t shift blame; do your dang jobs.

cannabis

Deciding whether to allow cannabis cultivation, dope dispensaries and everything else unleashed on us by the knuckleheads in Sacramento in our county is your responsibility. If you wanna kick the work to a working group, that’s on you. But make sure you do it right by balancing the representation. And a working group with four marijuana growers and one wanting to grow, ain’t balanced.

Duped by dopers

In fact, it’s a bit like signing up a bunch of foxes to design a hen house. And the whole silly show has played out just about like you’d expect. The working group shot for the moon by writing virtually everything they could ever want into a pipe dream of a pot ordinance only to shoot themselves in the foot with their greed, arrogance … and incompetence.

And then they couldn’t see through the smoke to realize they woke up the bear ’til it was too late. The opposition formed, letters and emails flooded the supervisors’ mailboxes, and the local paper began printing opinion pieces from citizens who DO NOT want commercial cannabis cultivation in their county. Same goes for dope dispensaries.

And then there’s this wannabe rancher/farmer who keeps harping about all the jobs commercial cannabis is gonna bring into the county. Hundreds, he says. This from a rustler who’s got a reputation for cheating investors and lobbing lawsuits. At the cannabis meetings, he goes on and on about pot plants being nothing but agriculture. “It’s just agriculture,” he mutters when things look like they aren’t going his way.

Mister, marijuana ain’t tomatoes. And you know it.

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Working group ain’t working

So here we are with less than three months to go and no ordinance. And the supervisors and their working group have been “working” on the silly thing for over a year now. And this while most other California counties have either passed theirs or passed moratoriums to give them more time.

So, now the next step is a “public hearing” where people—yea or nay—can tell the supervisors why we should or shouldn’t vote on a moratorium and why commercial cannabis should or shouldn’t be banned in our county. This is when the growers will again go on about how they want to come out of the shadows and get all legal and regulated. And that if the supervisors pass a moratorium or ban commercial growing, they’ll be “forced” to grow illegally in order to feed their families.

Hey, grower—no one forces anyone to break the law. You could always do something else to feed your family. You know, a career choice that doesn’t allow you to work the system and grow up to 99 “medical” marijuana plants because some shady doctor prescribed that many to a patient. How about getting a gig in which you need not be a “caregiver” who supplies sick folks with weed?

Sick spliff

Now, lemme say right here and now—I’m not against genuinely sick people using pot to help them get through chemotherapy and deal with the ravages of other diseases and conditions. What I AM saying is that medical marijuana, granted by California way back in 1996 and refined legislatively since, has been and is being abused like it’s nobody’s business. And, caregiver—you know this good and well.

Now some of you growers may truly care about sick folks. And maybe your hearts are in the right place on this issue. But c’mon, now—prove it to me and to your county by obeying the law and being realistic and sensitive to your neighbors concerning this high-stakes issue.

Go ahead and keep growing your medical weed. But be sure to keep the stinky commercial grows outta this beautiful county. Folks here love the clean, non-diverted lakes, rivers and streams and the piney, fresh air.

They don’t want more crime, more joblessness, more environmental damage, more dead wildlife from poisons, guard dogs, ugly fences, private security and transient and seasonal weed workers. And they don’t want marijuana even more accessible to their youngsters with dope dispensaries on main street.

I gotta admit it—I love this nutty, crazy county. And I want it to stay the way it is—or maybe even get better. No commercial cannabis would go a long way to that end—says this California cowboy.

NFL players who kneel for the national anthem aren’t SOBs—they’re just spoiled—like all of us.

NFL

You’ve got it all wrong, Trump. NFL players who kneel for the national anthem aren’t sons of b*****s. On the contrary, most are sons of tough, loving, hard-working single moms who tried to instill character in their kids.

These players kneel because they can. And they can because patriots have bled and died for their right to do so. They also have a right to act foolishly. As do you when you go on your Twitter tears, Mr. Artsy Dealmaker.

Most NFL players have been coddled and cajoled since college, maybe even high school. They’re recruited to expensive programs, given the full free ride and plied and swaddled with scads of swag every step of the way. And once they hit the NFL big time, the money and influence multiplies exponentially.

Many of their moms’ life lessons are either mitigated by the law of the ‘hood or by the sudden freedom and power that’s thrust upon them with celebrity. Kind of like what power and wealth did to you, Trump—fooled you into thinking you can fire players by proxy through their teams’ owners.

That’s rich-kid thinking and is as beneath your office as you are. Do yourself a favor, Donald: Issue an executive order to ban yourself from your Twitter account. You come off as pampered and silly tweeting as these players do taking a knee.

Let’s face it—as Americans, we’re spoiled. What we need is a good invasion. We need an enemy to threaten our republic, to galvanize us in a to-the-death fight for our freedom. We could use a rallying cry to make us want to stand up and stand together when our anthem is played.

NFL
Only Steeler standing. Former Army Ranger and patriot Alejandro Villanueva
The kneeling NFL players show us just how self-satisfied and complacent we have become as a people and a nation. Remember the weeks and months after 9/11? We came together as Americans. There wasn’t any silly anthem kneeling. Nor should there have been.

The tool who started a movement

Colin Kaepernick. As a bard wrote, “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” Or in this case, the fury of a woman who considers herself scorned by her country because of the color of her skin. Nessa Diab, Kaepernick’s girlfriend, is a radio personality and full-on provocateur. She’s also the driving force behind Kaep’s NFL unemployment.

With race-baiting girlfriend tweets like this, it’s no wonder Kaep is persona non grata in NFL circles:

NFL

The top two are former NFL and Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis with his arms around Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti. The bottom pair is a loyal slave with his arms around his master from the film, “Django Unchained.” Not hard to figure out this implication.

Colin Kaepernick remains unemployed by the NFL because he brings a busload of baggage. NFL owners are understandably reticent to sign him, not because he’s half black or because his girlfriend is a Muslim. And not even because he started this national anthem kneeling nonsense. He’s too hot to handle because his political negatives outweigh his football positives.

Kaep’s a borderline starting quarterback with horrendous throwing mechanics. He can’t read defenses any better than his girlfriend can heed the Constitution. NFL coaches want quarterbacks who are difference makers on the field, not on the sideline. And owners want to sell tickets and merchandise to fans who idolize their star players, not demonize them.

It’s an NFL business decision

Bottom line: Colin Kaepernick is just too much of a pain in the badonka. The only reason the current anthem kneelers haven’t been “fired,” as our spoiled rich-boy president pontificates, is because A) They aren’t quarterbacks, and B) Their play on the field makes up for their foolishness off of it.

Personally, I don’t give a rip whether they stand or kneel during the national anthem. Their choices don’t affect my patriotism or love of country in the least. Here’s all I want from them: Tackle violently, catch touchdown passes, and take the rock to the house. We pay them to provide exciting pro football, not to be flag waving, anthem respecting patriots.

So back off, Trump. Cool your jets, agenda-driven progressives. If NFL players wanna kneel, let’s let ’em kneel. Just as long as they go out there afterwards and knock the snot out of each other.

After all: “All’s well that ends well.” Except for those uber unsatisfying and winner-less overtime games. But that’s another rant for another Sunday.