Dear Justin Bieber,
We just recently learned that you were offered a “very large, very generous” sum of 5 million dollars to perform for Donald Trump supporters at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.
We also recently learned that you respectfully declined.
You’re learning, kid.
Unpaid and pissed,
New York Floral Shop Owners, Philadelphia-based Cabinetry Company, Atlantic City Contractors, New York City Contractors, South Florida Painters, A.K.A., a Whole-lotta Hard-Working Americans…
Dear Debbie Wasserman Schultz,
As you rapidly approach the title of Ex-Chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, let me just give you a few words of advice for what’s left of your political future – the best, greatest advice you’ll ever get on such matters.
When the politician you’re helping to get elected has a serious problem with appearing trustworthy – regardless of the label being justified or not justified – it’s always best to avoid manipulating the election – and then getting caught – so your candidate’s apparent lack of trustworthiness grows even greater.
I guess what I’m trying to say to you, Crooked Debbie, is this…
Thank you. Thank you. A billion times, thank you.
Donald J. Trump
Dear Fox “News” Co-Creator / Nixon-Advisor Roger Ailes,
Wow – talk about the end of an error, right, Roger? From getting Richard “Tricky Dick” Nixon elected in 1968 to co-creating the juggernaut that has become Fox *News over the past 20 years, you have truly been an incredible success at what you do.
Of course, your greed-based success has been to the great (and by “great” we mean horrific) detriment of the entire U.S. of A. You and your partner-in-slime Rupert Murdoch have done more to divide this country over the past fifty years than any racial / economical / or war-inspired tension could have ever done. You’ve literally lied through your teeth more times than any math genius (you know, those intellectual snob-types you profess to loathe) could count.
Let’s look at a few of the “Fair-and-Balanced” Personalities you helped make into Fuck-Ethical-Journalism-If-We-Tell-A-Lie-Big-Enough-And-Keep-Repeating-It-People-Will-Eventually-Come-To-Believe-It TV Stars. (Click on their links for added fun)
Bill O’Reilly – that bastion of barely-contained and usually piss-drunk rage.
Ann Coulter – a false-patriot who’d be the first to happily speak Mandarin if we were invaded by China tomorrow.
Sean Hannity – a fraudulent human being in every way conceivable.
Honestly, Roger, your time in the Television-as-Political-Theatre Pantheon has helped elect Giant Fails like Richard Nixon and George W. Bush and helped make the case for the Iraq war, which has since taken the lives of more than 4,500 Americans and which has cost the U.S. far more than 1.7 trillion (that’s trillion with a big-fucking T) dollars!
You even made the word Benghazi something 66% of male Fox viewers admit they get aroused by when Megyn Kelly or Charles Krauthammer say it on TV (proven science*).
And despite all the damage you’ve done to this nation, and despite all the lives you’ve harmed, what is it that has brought you down from your elitist kingdom on the Fox-financed mountain?
Your uncontrollable need to sexually harass women. Yep, even as your Mouthpiece Minions yammered on and on about “conservative family values” you were behaving like a Bloated Version of John C. Holmes – if John C. Holmes had a much, much smaller penis…
So thanks for everything, Roger. You’ve truly stooped to conquer. We owe you so much. Someday, hopefully, you’ll get paid back in full (and then some).
With the deepest sincerity,
Actual Truth, Real Justice, and the [non-skewered for ignorant Whites Only] American Way
Dear Pop Princess Meghan Trainor,
Just read your interview in Billboard – very enlightening. Saw that you have never voted and, quote, “I don’t have any desire to.”
Sure, for you it’s all about that bass, but don’t you think at this point – as an adult American woman – that it should be all about that vote?
A hundred years ago women around this nation were spat-upon, heckled, and belittled for wanting the basic right to vote. They were also beaten, raped, and murdered, so You could freely and safely exercise that sacred right.
It was an integral part of our country’s history known as The Suffragette Movement. Maybe pen a few less crappy songs and spend a few more minutes on Wikipedia.
Or at the very least listen to Bowie’s Suffragette City.
Dear Draft Dodger Donald Trump,
I wanted to write to you from my death chamber – while waiting for yet-another young human heart – and offer you strong praise for your rise in the Presidential polls and your catching up to Hillary Clinton.
I know how tricky it can be to talk about having a strong military mind, particularly when you yourself had multiple draft deferments to avoid serving in Vietnam. I, myself also dodged that bullet – so to speak – several times. But as long as you sound tough and determined in your public speeches, and as long as you have absolutely zero qualms about sending other American kids into war, then you’ll be fine (and look good doing it, too).
I know you also spent time at a military academy, Donald, which is almost like being in the Marine Corps. Just keep banging that drum loudly. Our citizens will eventually see that as close enough to serving in combat.
Now go beat Hillary, my friend. Your fellow “dogs of war” are [safely] right behind you.
Dick Cheney War Hawk / Draft Dodger
Dear Flawed Americans (All 319 Million of US),
An extremely important reminder to ALL AMERICANS…
If All Lives truly Matter in this nation, then We as a nation must work everyday to unite.
We have to see what is truth. And the TRUTH is that we’re all flawed, scared, strong, loving, hopeful, desperate, flaky, reliable, angry, kind, greedy, and generous.
Black, White, Hispanic, Native American, Asian, etc. Cop, Vet, Teacher, Coach, Doctor, etc.
The only thing Human Beings are truly consistent at is Being Human (warts and all).
Most Police Officers want to do Good. Most are not abusive, corrupt, murderous. But both types do exist.
Most African-American People want to live well and be a constructive part of society. Most are not bad people. But both types do exist – as with Asian, Hispanic, Whites, etc…
Most Immigrants come to the U.S. and do right by their new country, their new home. Most do not sneak in and manipulate things only for themselves. But sure, both types do live here.
The “bad guys” in our country are the political leaders who won’t work together, who only seek to remain in power, rather than using their elected position to help all types of people.
The “bad guys” in our country are those who profit off dead Americans, or Americans in crisis, be they NRA/GOA leadership or corporate heads who put their bottom-line and shareholders ahead of individual lives.
The “bad guys” in our country are those who use a gun or bomb instead of their ability to learn, love, and work even harder for positive change.
The “bad guys” come though social media and televisions and push lies, propaganda, not caring how it may affect those who take it as gospel.
The “bad guys” in our society cannot win because they are outnumbered and they are ultimately weak.
And the “bad guys” look like all of us. They are straight, gay, white, black, brown, young, old, wealthy, middle-class, poor, religious, atheists, athletic, well-educated, lazy, small-minded, living in cities, living in rural towns.
“The world is a fine place and worth the fighting for…” Ernest Hemingway
Whatever frightens you, seek to better understand it. Whatever angers you, work to let go of it. Whatever makes you feel helpless, take action to relieve its grip.
We’re All Capable of Doing Good. It simply requires strength. You’ve got plenty of it in You.
Your fellow deeply-flawed American,
I am an American white guy who believes in our 2nd Amendment and is a current member of the National Rifle Association. When I go to the NRA website I read all kinds of purposeful, serious words. Meaningful words like:
Freedom Protection Rights Safety Draconian Enemies Terror
There are also intense phrases and warnings on the NRA site (and in the near-daily emails I receive) that make me feel what I maturely describe as “the mixed feels.” Substantial phrases and dire warnings such as:
“Our rights are under attack like never before.” / “Dedicated to securing the future of freedom.”
Even my NRA membership card has the powerful words, “STAND and FIGHT” in bold, I-ain’t-messing-around-sized print. Seriously, it’s impressive the way that call of resistance is placed directly above my own name and just to the left of an image of a powerful Bald Eagle’s feather-covered butt.
As you likely already know, THE major point, purpose and obsession of much of our NRA’s leadership is…well, actually, it’s money. And power…it’s also power. But aside from those two things, NRA heads like Wayne LaPierre, the human-hamster hybrid who’s our CEO and Executive Vice President, want Americans to remain free and able to protect themselves from criminals, terrorists and that all-time scary fave: The Big. Bad. Tyrannical. Government.
So why not better embrace communities of color? Why does the NRA community – well into the 21st Century – still resemble an Oregon Militia or a Woody Allen Movie? Really, it’s kind of pitiful. I’ve seen fewer white people at a Stanley Cup Final than at an NRA membership meeting. Sure, there is a scant increase in African-Americans, Asians and Hispanics joining in the past decade, but it’s still a comparatively tiny amount. The face of the NRA remains over 30, doughy, and…well…me. The face of the NRA looks a lot like my once-angular and very pallid mug.
Again, the NRA and its leadership are constantly reminding you – the everyday NRA member – that your 2nd Amendment rights are in peril, at risk, and being threatened. If it isn’t Hillary Clinton, President Obama or Michael Bloomberg, then it’s some other anti-American leftist-loon who apparently possesses the ability to steadily dispose of the approximately 300 million firearms within our United States’ borders. We cannot find 10 million illegal immigrants within our borders, how in the sam-hell could we ever possibly locate three times that number in something that is far easier to hide? That’s a rhetorical question, for those of you starting to wander mentally.
So, given the fact that Americans – both NRA members and non-members – are always hearing about gun rights vanishing due to “The Tyrannical Guvment,” why on God’s green earth isn’t NRA leadership doing every-frickin’-thing they can to attract, entice and lure African-Americans into joining? In the past several decades, there’s no group of Americans who have been greater victims of governmental and law-enforcement double-standards and hypocrisy than African-Americans! Seriously, a pale weasel like Dylan Roof can ambush and execute nine churchgoers and he’s arrested peacefully and treated to some fast-food by his arresters before going into processing. But Eric Garner, an African-American, who was selling tax-free cigarettes ended up being choked to death by an NYPD officer when he failed to comply with the policeman’s requests. An armed Oregon militia took over federal wildlife refuge and promised bloodshed if their demands weren’t met. Of the 27 extremists involved, only one was killed, and that was only after he attempted to shoot a federal agent. But Minnesota resident and African-American, Philando Castile, was shot dead when he declared to a police officer (who’d pulled him over concerning a busted taillight) that he had a licensed weapon in the car that he was legally allowed to have. Castile literally died for complying, but the NRA heads were slow and timid to react.
According to the NAACP, African-Americans are incarcerated at nearly six times the rate of whites. Together, African-Americans and Hispanics comprised 58% of all U.S. prisoners in 2008, even though those two groups only make up one-fourth of our nation’s population. Hell, there are African-American men languishing in prison for years over possession for marijuana, even as more and more states are declaring it legal.
Color me reactionary, but that seems like some real-life government-induced tyranny. Why on earth wouldn’t the NRA leadership want to welcome millions of African-Americans into the fold, since they’re the ones who personally understand government oppression better than anyone else? Again, this question is rhetorical.
We know why the NRA leadership isn’t that interested in the rainbow coalition. It is because if you’re a member long enough, you have a vote. And with that vote comes the possibility of change. NRA heads like millionaire NRA and CEO Wayne LaPierre don’t want change, after all, he’s making a killing from all of the killings.
So as a proud and defiant member of the NRA and, even better, the good-ole USA, I am asking my fellow Americans of color to join me at the next NRA meeting. Membership isn’t expensive and you get some nifty goodies when you join. And the best goody you’ll get several years down the road? A possibility for real change and your own greater sense of “the good feels”. Most importantly, you’ll no longer feel as helpless against the tyranny of lethal double-standards and hypocrisy.
Attention Liberals, Minorities, and Any American Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired of Gun-Related Deaths in America,
A Call To Arms
(Why This Liberal Joined the NRA and Why You Should, too)
Raise your hand if you like Dead Americans. Just stick it right up there. If you raised your hand, then stop reading, this article is not for you – you’re not welcome here anymore. If, however, the thought of Americans needlessly dying is as upsetting to you as it is to this proud liberal (aka, me) then perhaps you’ve also become depressed, frustrated, and disgusted by not only the near-endless mass shootings across our land but also from the apathy, empty rhetoric, and feigned compassion our political leaders spout after every one of these unacceptable – and potentially avoidable – tragedies. I know the “dead Americans” opening angle is harsh, even somewhat cruel. But what’s going on in our country – this undeniable epidemic of gun-related violence – is harsh and cruel. We’re losing on average more than 30,000 American men, women, and worst of all, children every single year, with more than 1/3rd of those gun-related deaths being homicides. Yet, here we are. Stories about gun-related homicides and tragic accidental-shootings are as common on the nightly news as sports scores and way-too-cheery weather people with way-too-white teeth.
There are two common-denominators to all these gun-related deaths occurring here in the United States. One, they’re happening to Americans (yes, you may call me Captain Obvious). Two, they involve some kind of firearm (yes, you may call me an idiot). Sure, we can argue about all the other variables, including the motives or reasons behind the violence; the robbery gone badly, terrorism, excessive force, as well as to who is committing these various violent acts. But what we can agree on, right now, is we don’t like that these deaths are happening with such alarming frequency, and that those in charge – politically speaking – are doing very little to help curb the startlingly high level of gun-related deaths here. And the combination of those two factors means that unless we honestly try a few different things, this systemic violence in America is going to continue. More Americans will needlessly die.
Captain Obvious here, ready to make another brilliant point. We are never, ever going to achieve “Gun Control” here in America. It is not possible. We are a nation of 50 states and more than 310 million people. The U.S. is a big place. And within this vast country are more than 300 million firearms. That is far too many to ever even dream of controlling. Perhaps, going forward, a better way to frame the debate is to label it “Gun Safety” rather than gun control. Besides, we do have our 2nd Amendment to protect, and I personally don’t want it to be taken away any more than I do any of the other cooler Amendments; you know the ones about Freedom of Speech and the right to vote and have an occasional Whiskey Sour. And while I do want my freedoms to remain, I also want responsibility with my freedom; sort of like fries with my burger (they both go well together). But here’s the catch, they’re not just my freedoms. They’re our freedoms. We are all Americans. And that’s the point, and one we should never stop reminding ourselves and each other over. So, while I must retain my American right to own a shotgun, or a 9 millimeter Beretta, that right doesn’t have greater value than your American right to vote, or exercise your Freedom of Religion, or your child’s right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We must find some kind of compromise, where our nation’s entire population exercises both a healthy respect for our rights and an equal respect for each other and the fact we all have a right to live, love, and work here.
How does all this tie into a snarky liberal joining the National Rifle Association? I’m glad you asked. The NRA is one of the single most powerful lobbies in Washington, D.C. They make billions of dollars annually and turn around and compensate our Congress in various ways with millions (also annually) in “legal” expenditures (aka, treats). Feel free to search out what each U.S. Congressman received in expenditures from the NRA each year, and just for a hoot, start with that senatorial fella Tom Cotton (R) out of Arkansas (I know, right?). Yes, some Democrats and many Republicans are well under the influence of what the top brass of the NRA want. Our nation has a population upwards of 310 million Americans (yes, I’d mentioned it before, but it’s a figure worth emphasizing). The NRA has a membership of just under 5 million Americans. Take a moment do the math on that. 4.8 million is what percent of 310 million people? Yep, you did well, that is about 1.5 percent. And then wrap your mind around the additional fact that – according to a 2013 Pew Research Center poll – 74% of NRA members are in favor of background checks for private firearm sales. In other words, based on the lack of movement toward universal background checks becoming a federal law, only 1/4th of the NRA’s members (approximately 1.2 million) truly have the ears of our Congress, and neither that 1.2 million nor many in the D.C. Beltway are that concerned about even slowing the tide of American blood flowing down our avenues, boulevards, and streets. Heck, our NRA-influenced Congress just voted to not stop potential terrorists – say those on the U.S. Terrorist Watch List – from buying firearms here in America. What’s a little American blood compared to the vast influence of the NRA-related One-Percenters with all the money and power? Don’t answer that – it’s meant to be rhetorical.
Despite our current state of shock and sadness over the recent mass shootings across our nation, let’s really think about the Long Game on achieving stricter background checks for all firearm sales and how to sway the NRA heads and our Congress into at least trying this angle as a way to potentially lower the number of gun-related deaths. Now, if you really look at the Congressmen receiving the most treats from the NRA, and also really look at the leadership of the NRA, you’ll see that when it comes to racial and political diversity, these folks make the KKK seem like an all-welcoming melting pot. In other words, the U.S. Congressmen most resistant to even attempting some kind of reasonable effort when it comes to protecting more citizens from gun-related deaths are typically white, Republican males. Again, fewer than 1.5 million Americans are controlling the debate on background checks for firearm-purchases, leaving the other 308.5 million Americans to worry about the safety of their own unrepresented butts. So given the unending cycle of violence and the fact that this tiny select percentage of wealthy, white folks are doing nothing to protect a few more Americans from potential gun-related deaths, it seems only logical to try something different. And one way – thinking about the long game and the bigger picture – is to change up the dynamic of those who make up groups like the NRA and GOA (Gun Owners of America). I think it’s reasonable to believe that many within the Congress and NRA leadership are against dead Americans. Unfortunately, based on the complete inaction of these privileged few, it seems Congress and NRA leadership are in greater favor of the money and power they wield. Perhaps groups like the NRA and GOA should get a sudden influx of new members. What if more African-Americans and Latino-Americans joined the NRA and, over time, moved into greater positions of power? What if more Asian-Americans and Muslim-Americans joined these groups, lending their different perspectives and feelings to the way things were decided upon? What if thousands more liberals like myself joined these organizations and used the inside access, knowledge, and influence to slowly make something like universal background checks a reality? Again, this is unlikely to radically drop the number of annual fatalities within the U.S., but it might save some lives. As a civilized society, shouldn’t protecting a few more Americans be worth the effort? And honestly, by slowly changing the fabric of those running these powerful gun lobbies over time – through membership and votes – well, isn’t that a fantastic example of Americans exercising their democratic rights?
I understand someone might not want to give his or her money to a group like the NRA, but the small amount of money for a yearly membership ($35 dollars is what I paid) is like an investment in slowly making some minor, common sense changes to an organization whose majority already favors universal background checks. Remember that the average NRA member is simply interested in hunting, ownership, and other sportsman-related activities. Most members are equally mortified about the widespread gun-related deaths in this nation. It is the leadership who calls the shots and lords over our lawmakers. If we are on the inside of such a group, then with momentum and growing influence, we can steadily alter how leadership governs. If we are on the inside of the NRA – at national conferences and local chapter meetings – then healthy debates with fellow members are more likely to allow for differing opinions to break through and at least be heard (face it, Facebook, you’re not a very good host for gun safety-related discourse or nuanced debate). Imagine if more and more active members and leaders of the NRA wanted to protect the 2nd Amendment and also wanted to have universal background checks, or wanted to close gun show loopholes.
And what about the “Us versus Them” mentality of the NRA and similar groups? Right on the Membership Page of the NRA, the words “Join the Fight” are there in large, dramatic print. What “fight” is the NRA talking about? You know, the one they like fear-mongering about; the imagined (aka, not real) one where an imaginary (still not real) Tyrannical Government comes for our guns and white women. Here’s a fun, paranoid quote from the NRA’s Facebook page:
“President Obama’s push to ban people on the Terrorist Watch List from obtaining firearms isn’t about keeping America safe. Rather, it’s just another example of his effort to limit the availability of guns in general, using the no-fly list as a tool.” NRA Facebook Page 12/7/15
Another example of the NRA leadership’s dishonest rhetoric comes from Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre (whose annual salary is nearly one million dollars), written right on your very first “welcoming” letter once your membership’s been approved. LaPierre claims, “…right now the Obama-Biden-Bloomberg gun ban machine is doubling down and coming after our rights with a vengeance. They will not stop until they are at our door, demanding we turn over our guns and our freedom.” The last part of this quote is even underlined, so you know it must be true. Why on Earth do NRA heads need to whip up Americans against each other, as opposed to dealing together with a real, everyday fight we all should be involved with; the one where we fight to protect each other from endless waves of gun-related violence? The above quotes only serve to keep healthy debate about gun safety from occurring. That kind of rhetoric needs to end and instead be replaced with nuanced compromise we can all live with. How great would it be if the future members of the NRA weren’t coming from a place of fear of government, but rather from the idea of truly looking to protect all Americans? Personally, I love the thought of the NRA representing Americans who both love their freedoms and those fellow citizens they share those rights with.
Gun-related violence will always be with us. It is part of the deal when you live in a free society that already has millions of firearms within it. But if over time the very fabric of the NRA and Congress is changed by differing politics and ethnic makeup, then perhaps we begin to make a slight difference. Maybe a few more Americans leave their workplaces in one piece. Maybe a few more American children make it home from school. Maybe we have fewer police-related incidents where an innocent person dies. Maybe just a few more American families are preserved.
The vast majority of Americans agree, as polls continue to show, that when it comes to purchasing firearms, background checks should be mandatory. A recent CBS News poll has 81% of Republicans, 89% of Independents, and 93% of Democrats in favor of mandatory background checks for would-be gun purchasers. That’s 81% of Republicans and 93% of Democrats agreeing on something related to protecting Americans. No one reasonable is asking for the repeal, or tinkering, of the 2nd Amendment. No one is looking to take guns from Americans who live here legally and lawfully. But the fact is an astoundingly high percentage of Americans want background checks for prospective gun owners. Let’s get those numbers inside the NRA and GOA. Imagine an NRA-puppet like junior Senator Tom Cotton receiving pressure from thousands of constituents saying no more votes for him unless he did what the majority of Americans want? Nothing influences a politician more than the reality of losing re-election. As a country we’ve mourned and yelled and then forgotten about far too many dead Americans, needlessly lost to gun-related violence. Maybe I’m naïve about this effort making a difference. What I do know is that the current rhetoric and policy are not saving enough folks. And as a proud liberal American, I know I have both the freedom and responsibility to at least try a different angle. And by now being a card-carrying member of the NRA, I suddenly have a voice in a powerful group that I previously didn’t have.
In 2013, 11,208 Americans died on our soil from gun-related homicides. In 2015, there were hundreds – yes, hundreds – of mass shootings, where in each instance at least four Americans were either wounded or killed. What if, through freely joining the NRA and GOA we lower that 2013 figure by several hundred victims within a decade? Or what if – say, by 2030 – we lower the number of mass shootings in the U.S. by several dozen? Seems like a good reason to try something different. Seems like we’re perfectly capable of real change over time when we actually make an honest effort. It’s not like it’s going to kill us to try. One thing’s for sure, it will continue to kill US if we don’t.
Dear Christian Televangelist Paula White,
Father, Son, and Holy Ghost
Dear Finding Dory Fanatics,
Since the blockbuster movie Finding Dory has already made more money than the annual budget for the entire department of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), we figured we should probably address the elephant – or elephant seal – in the room.
We know you loved Finding Dory, and we know your super-precocious 8-year-old really loved Finding Dory, but for the glory of King Neptune, can you please NOT BUY your kid a real-life Dory from your local aquarium shop or pet store? Please? Seriously, it’s a terrible idea for all involved, kind of like eating fish tacos from McDonald’s or voting for Trump.
See, kids, real-life Dory fish are known in the natural world as Blue Tang (not to be confused with Zoe Saldana in Avatar), and they don’t belong in a fishbowl, or a fresh-water tank at home, or even a salt-water tank at home. Blue Tang/Dory fish belong in the ocean, just like coral, whales, and the human waste dumped by Princess Cruises.
So please, enjoy the movie Finding Dory as much as you want, but refrain from the selfish temptation to “re-enact” the movie at home. Honestly, if you’re that dead set on mingling with Dory, then learn how to Scuba dive or get a dang job at SeaWorld before they’re permanently shut down.
With deepsea sincerity,
The Ghosts of a Million Clownfish/Nemo fish