For the last two weeks, Ferguson, Missouri has been nightly entertainment. We have watched CNN, Fox News, MSNBC for the latest updates. Has the violence continued? Have peace and quiet been restored? What is wrong with those people in Ferguson? Could this happen here?
For two weeks, I have been avoiding the nightly news. I truly did not want to know what the latest update was. As a trauma surgeon, I hate loss of life. It is in my DNA. I hate it when someone needlessly gets gunned down in the streets. We saw that in Ferguson. We also saw it in the Trayvon Martin case.
In the United States there are several truisms. One of those truisms is that you simply don’t talk back to police. I was taught, growing up in the ’70s, that I needed to show police respect whether they deserved it or not. Why? Because that’s the way it is in the United States. My parents never explained it that way. But that’s the way it is. We can sit down and discuss the merits of the system and thoughtful ways of changing the system so the system works more for everybody, but the way the system is today… and the way it has been for more than 100 years, you must show police officers respect or there are dire consequences. Simply put, if you do not show police the respect that they, themselves want, you increase dramatically your chances of dying. Continue reading What Ferguson tells us about America→
I hope that everyone had a Merry Christmas. (A lot, but not all, of the following comes from Steve Benen.)
* Iraq: “At least 34 people were killed in three bombings in Christian areas of Baghdad on Wednesday, including a car bomb that exploded as worshippers were leaving a Christmas service, Iraqi police and medics said. Elsewhere in Iraq, at least 10 people were killed in three attacks that targeted police and Shi’ite pilgrims, police said.”
* In related news, the U.S. is “quietly rushing dozens of Hellfire missiles and low-tech surveillance drones to Iraq to help government forces combat an explosion of violence by a Qaeda-backed insurgency that is gaining territory in both western Iraq and neighboring Syria.”
* One of the truly great things that I have read lately has to do with Sarah Palin. Shortly after this Duck Dynasty nonsense blew up, Fox News trotted out former governor Palin to defend liberty or something like that. When pressed by “hard hitting” Fox News anchor Greta Van Susteren, Sarah Palin responded, “I haven’t read the article. I don’t know exactly how he said it.” Priceless!!!
* Delta Air LInes sold round-trip tickets for $25. Some flights were only $5. Wow!! now that’s some “glitch” as the company spokesperson described it.
The term “fair and balanced” has come to mean something different than we are used to. Fox News has hijacked that term. There has been nothing that Fox News has produced that is fair and balanced. This cartoon from Media Matters perfectly sums up what fair and balanced has become in our society –