Monthly Archives: May 2010

Wayne Allyn Root Is Poison For The Libertarian Party

Wayne Allyn Root, the businessman and online gambling advocate who served as Bob Barr’s running mate on the Libertarian ticket in 2008, is casting his lot in with the birthers. As Radley Balko reports, Root promotes on his Facebook page his participation in a “trial of Barack Obama” that took place last week in New York:

CM-Capture-23

What’s this trial all about, you might ask. Well, here’s a description:

With thousands of spectators expecting to attend, Dr. James Manning’s ‘trial of the century’ of Barack Obama on charges of treason, fraud, and sedition begins tomorrow morning at 9 AM in New York City. Co-defendants in the trial are Columbia University and the CIA. In the last days of the run-up to the trial, Manning revealed that he has sources in government that will testify against Obama, Columbia, and the CIA. He also reported explosive information that Barack Obama has used upwards of 20 different Social Security numbers during his life. Witnesses are expected to testify at the trial that Barack Obama was never a student at Columbia University, although he received a degree from the school. Dr. Manning claims that Columbia, therefore, is an accomplice to fraud. Other witnesses are expected to testify that Obama fails the Constitutional test for Presidential eligibility due to the fact that his father was a British subject at the time of his birth and his mother was not old enough to confer citizenship when he was born. A dramatic new revelation, however, may serve to re-emphasize the importance of the trial. The state of Hawaii, according to sources, did NOT accept his birth registration that was filed, despite issuing a ‘statement of live birth.’

This is the same James Manning who became famous last year when he started referring to President Obama as a “long legged mack daddy” and who joined Birther Queen Bee Orly Taitz last year at a protest that nobody attended against Fox News for “covering up” the birther story. Root hasn’t said anything one way or the other about the birth certificate issue that I’ve been able to find, but he does seem to buy at least part of the argument:

FireShot Pro capture #267 - 'Facebook I Wayne Allyn Root' - www_facebook_com_profile_php_id=1162754668

Of course, the possibility that Root and Obama may have traveled in different circles at Columbia, a school that had thousands of undergraduates at the time, does not seem to have occurred to Wayne at all, since he’s expressed this belief before. Why is this important ? Well, this year, Root is running for Chairman of the Libertarian National Committee, and he’s made it clear that this is merely a stepping stone to the 2012 nomination for President. Based on stuff like this, and the impression I got from reading Root’s The Conscience of a Libertarian, which I will be posting a review of in the very near future, I’ve got to completely agree with Radley Balko’s take on this:

I’m not a member of the Libertarian Party, though I’ve spoken to several state conventions over the last couple years. I have my problems with the party, but I’d like to see it do well, in part because for better or worse the LP has a significant impact on how people view libertarianism.

So let’s be clear about this: If Wayne Allyn Root becomes the face of the LP, it will be an unmitigated disaster for the party. It will also likely do quite a bit of damage to the public perception of libertarianism as a philosophy.

This is batshit crazy, off-the-charts conspiratorial hogwash. There are plenty of legitimate reasons to criticize Barack Obama. Root has chosen to dip into angry-white-guy, “Obama’s a secret Muslim” absolute and utter lunacy.

Libertarians: The man is a nut. Associate with him at your peril.

Indeed.

Originally posted at Below The Beltway

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French Burqua Ban: Liberating or Tyrannical?

I can almost guarantee that the overwhelming swap of Liberty Papers readers were sympathetic to the creators of South Park in the recent controversy. In fact, I’m sure some of you are planning on participating in Everybody Draw Mohammed Day.

Given that, I have to request reader thoughts on the French ban of the burqa (a Muslim face-covering for women). My first intuition is a firm “no” against the ban, simply based on my strong emotional attachment to the tenets of freedom of religion as expressed in the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Christopher Hitchens makes the case over at Slate that the ban isn’t a ban at all, but actually a sort of state-mandated liberation of women from the tyranny of Islamic theology:

The French legislators who seek to repudiate the wearing of the veil or the burqa—whether the garment covers “only” the face or the entire female body—are often described as seeking to impose a “ban.” To the contrary, they are attempting to lift a ban: a ban on the right of women to choose their own dress, a ban on the right of women to disagree with male and clerical authority, and a ban on the right of all citizens to look one another in the face. The proposed law is in the best traditions of the French republic, which declares all citizens equal before the law and—no less important—equal in the face of one another.

After reading the article, I’m not sure what to think. Hitchens makes a strong case, but he is a master manipulator of words and verbal gymnastics are on full display in “In Your Face.” What do you think?

Ohio Police Officer Found Guilty In Shooting Of Unarmed Cyclist

Yesterday, an Ohio jury found a local police officer guilty in the shooting of an unarmed motorcyclist:

TOLEDO, OHIO — A Lucas County jury has found an Ottawa Hills police officer guilty of felonious assault in the May 2009 shooting of a motorcyclist.

After over five hours of deliberations, a jury found that part-time Ottawa Hills officer Thomas Caine White, 27, used excessive force in shooting motorcyclist Michael McCloskey, 25, during a traffic stop on May 23, 2009. White was found guilty of count of felonious assault with a gun specification, charges that could lead to 11 years in prison when he is sentenced.

McCloskey suffered serious injuries as a result of the shooting. He is now paralyzed from the waist down.

Attorneys for each side made closing arguments Friday afternoon.

The prosecution emphasized that this trial was not about all police officers or a specific police department but about the actions of Officer White that night.

Assistant Lucas County Prosecutor Jeff Lingo told the court that slides of the police dash cam video show McCloskey made no movement as if he had a weapon and the he gave no indication of being a threat to White. “He says, ‘Will you please lift the bike off me?’ This is after he’s been shot. He’s still being police to the officer who just shot him in the back. That’s the Mike McCloskey that he faced that night,” said Lingo

Here’s a video from White’s dashboard camera (no sound) which clearly shows the pursuit and shooting of McCloskey, and the fact that McCloskey made no threatening moves at all:

As noted above, Officer White faces up to eleven years in prison for this conviction.

Nation’s Drug Czar Laments Drug War Failure

Here’s the direct quote:

“In the grand scheme, it has not been successful,” drug czar Gil Kerlikowske told the AP. “Forty years later, the concern about drugs and drug problems is, if anything, magnified, intensified.”

That’s certainly good to hear, but here’s the chief problem:

This week President Obama backed up that rhetoric by announcing a new national policy that treats drug use as much as a public health concern as a criminal issue.

That seems like Obama is just heightening the drug war while not militarizing it. If he were to take slow steps to rescinding the whole failed enterprise, he would be treating drugs as a public health concern and less as a criminal issue.

Elena Kagan And The Second Amendment

Today’s controversy burning up Memeorandum is a revelation concerning Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan’s previously expressed views on the Second Amendment:

May 13 (Bloomberg) — Elena Kagan said as a U.S. Supreme Court law clerk in 1987 that she was “not sympathetic” toward a man who contended that his constitutional rights were violated when he was convicted for carrying an unlicensed pistol.

Kagan, whom President Barack Obama nominated to the high court this week, made the comment to Justice Thurgood Marshall, urging him in a one-paragraph memo to vote against hearing the District of Columbia man’s appeal.

The man’s “sole contention is that the District of Columbia’s firearms statutes violate his constitutional right to ‘keep and bear arms,’” Kagan wrote. “I’m not sympathetic.”

The law in question, of course, were the same firearms law that were at issue some 21 years later in District of Columbia v. Heller, which the Supreme Court ultimately struck down in what was actually the first explicit ruling on its part that the Second Amendment protected an individual right to keep and bear arms.

But, in 1987, a similar challenge to the same law suffered a much different fate:

The lower court ruling in the 1987 case, issued by the District of Columbia’s highest court, said the Second Amendment protects only the rights of states to raise militias, and not individual gun rights. The ruling upheld Lee Sandidge’s conviction for carrying a pistol without a license, possession of an unregistered firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition.

The high court refused to hear the case, known as Sandidge v. United States. The memo to Marshall, found in his papers at the Library of Congress, includes a handwritten “D,” indicating that he was among those who voted to deny review.

White House spokesman Ben LaBolt said the position taken in the memo to Marshall reflected the prevailing view of the law at the time.

That is, of course, absolutely correct. Prior to Heller, the Supreme Court’s Second Amendment, though slim, was decidedly against the idea that the amendment protected an individual surprise. Thus, it’s not all that surprising to me as an attorney that a 27 year-old law clerk working for one of the most liberal Justices on the Court at the time would produce a memo arguing that the appeal should be denied.

The question, then, isn’t what Kagan thought twenty years ago when the law was different, but what she thinks now, and she gave at least some clue to that during her confirmation hearings to become Solicitor General:

As a nominee to be solicitor general last year, Kagan told lawmakers that she accepted that 5-4 decision in District of Columbia v. Heller as a precedent of the court.

“There is no question, after Heller, that the Second Amendment guarantees individuals the right to keep and bear arms and that this right, like others in the Constitution, provides strong although not unlimited protection against governmental regulation,” she said.

Kagan should clearly be questioned on her views about the Second Amendment and the Heller decision, but rather than focusing on something she wrote 20 years ago, I would hope that the Senators focus on what she believes today.

H/T: Vodkapundit

Prosecutors Ask If Congress Duped CBO To Obtain Favorable Score

Okay, that’s not true. But it’s no different than this:

Prosecutors Ask if 8 Banks Duped Rating Agencies

Wall Street played a crucial role in the mortgage market’s path to collapse. Investment banks bundled mortgage loans into securities and then often rebundled those securities one or two more times. Those securities were given high ratings and sold to investors, who have since lost billions of dollars on them.

At Goldman, there was even a phrase for the way bankers put together mortgage securities. The practice was known as “ratings arbitrage,” according to former workers. The idea was to find ways to put the very worst bonds into a deal for a given rating. The cheaper the bonds, the greater the profit to the bank.

The rating agencies may have facilitated the banks’ actions by publishing their rating models on their corporate Web sites. The agencies argued that being open about their models offered transparency to investors.

But several former agency workers said the practice put too much power in the bankers’ hands. “The models were posted for bankers who develop C.D.O.’s to be able to reverse engineer C.D.O.’s to a certain rating,” one former rating agency employee said in an interview, referring to collateralized debt obligations.

I just finished reading Michael Lewis’ The Big Short, and it’s pretty clear that the banks knew enough about the rating agencies’ models to pretty successfully turn shit into shinola. In fact, the agencies made enough of their ratings models public to make it absolutely certain that the banks would game the system. Not *dupe* the rating agencies, mind you, because the ratings agencies were willing partners.

But I thought about it a little bit more, and I was struck by another thought.

The Democratic house leadership wanted to cost projection of the healthcare bill to come in within a certain number. So what did they do? They duped gamed the CBO rating system to ensure that the bill they wrote would have the price tag they wanted it to have. The CBO is a respected and non-partisan office, but they’re asked only to score what legislators give them, NOT what they think the legislators will do in other bills immediately or a few years down the line.

Essentially both the Wall Street banks and Congressional leadership did the same thing: they were teaching to the test. They knew specifically what was needed in order to generate a favorable outcome from the “test”, and they made sure they did exactly what they wanted, but in such a way that got the right score.

So who’s going to prosecute the Democratic leadership when this healthcare bill inevitably costs the American people more than they advertised?

Robin Hood – Tea Partier?

A review for Robin Hood from the Seattle Weekly poses some unexpected accusations:

An old-fashioned adventure epic weighed down by overly simplistic, quasi-populist dialogue,Ridley Scott‘s Robin Hood plays like a rousing love letter to the Tea Party movement. Instead of robbing from the rich to give to the poor, this Robin Hood (Russell Crowe) preaches about “liberty” and the rights of the individual as he wanders a countryside populated chiefly by Englishpersons bled dry by government greed. Stumbling across King Richard the Lionheart’s corpse and the King’s dying sidekick, Robert Loxley, Robin agrees to take the Loxley family sword back to papa Walter Loxley (Max Von Sydow) in Nottingham, only to discover that Walter lives with Marian (Cate Blanchett), the headstrong woman Robert married on the eve of decamping for war a decade earlier. The film’s second act is largely taken up with the budding relationship between Robin and Marian. Just as this union is on the verge of consummation, the landowners threaten to rise up against the royals, the French army storms…something, and the English king has to make political concessions to his people so that they’ll march for him instead of against him in a great, partially underwater battle. Robin Hoodseemingly seeks to wow through assault—the soundtrack is loud and extraordinarily dense, the pace is relentless, the battle scenes choreographed for total sensory disorientation, and the war of the story is too convoluted to keep track of without the aid of press notes.

If Hollywood is trying to tap into Tea Party sentiment, that’s really interesting. A horde of leftist films came out during the Bush years, but those were typically cast aside as purely ideological. Perhaps Hollywood executives are more business conscious than political.

Gay Marriage, Religious Liberty, And The Case Of One 8 Year-Old Boy

The latest battleground in the ongoing debate over gay marriage and religious liberty is taking place in Massachusetts:

BOSTON (AP) — A Roman Catholic school in Massachusetts has withdrawn its acceptance of an 8-year-old boy with lesbian parents, saying their relationship was “in discord” with church teachings, according to one of the boys’ mothers.

It’s at least the second time in recent months that students have not been allowed to attend a U.S. Catholic school because of their parents’ sexual orientation, with the other instance occurring in Colorado.

The Massachusetts woman, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of concerns about the effect of publicity on her son, said she planned to send the boy to third grade at St. Paul Elementary School in Hingham in the fall. But she said she learned her son’s acceptance was rescinded during a conference call Monday with Principal Cynthia Duggan and the parish priest, the Rev. James Rafferty.

“I’m accustomed to discrimination, I suppose, at my age and my experience as a gay woman,” the mother said. “But I didn’t expect it against my child.”

Rafferty said her relationship “was in discord with the teachings of the Catholic Church,” which holds marriage is only between a man and woman, the woman said.

She said Duggan told her teachers wouldn’t be prepared to answer questions her son might have because the school’s teachings about marriage conflict with what he sees in his family.

Rafferty and Duggan did not respond to requests for comment.

It’s unfortunately that the Church is choosing to deprive this young boy of the benefits of a Catholic education because of the lifestyle of his parents, but this strikes me as one area where the rights of the Church should trump the rights of the parents, or the child.

In an ideal libertarian world, of course, there would be no laws barring discrimination in private institutions at all. If a business owner wished to refuse service to anyone for any reason. We don’t live in that world, of course, thanks largely to the a history where the power of the state was used to enforce strict racial segregation that was designed to prevent any entire group of people from succeeding economically. That’s no reason, however, to involve the government even more in private decisions like this.

If the Church feels that it would be in appropriate to admit a student with Lesbian parents, it should be free to make that decision.

A New Introduction

I am honored to join The Liberty Papers.

Brad Warbiany and Doug Mataconis have been very welcoming, and my new realm into libertarian thought should be fulfilling and rich.

I’ve been at United Liberty for two years, starting with the 2008 election and running all the way up to coverage of Arizona’s discriminatory immigration law. My work goes back even further, back to the San Francisco Examiner and the neighborhood newspapers North Seattle Herald Outlook and Madison Park Times in Seattle, Washington.

In the times we live in, there seems to be a political shift going on. The United States is becoming more ethnically diverse, the economy continues to stagnate, and government is making short term maneuvers without foreseeing long-term effects. On the other side of the coin, the Right, who talk a lot of jive about freedom, are parading their own twisted form of nationalism. In these times, it’s important to try to solidify and distinguish the libertarian movement as a separate alternative to the forms of authoritarianism so far proposed to us. I hope my work at The Liberty Papers will help to do that.

I am also currently working on a book on the future of race in politics. It should be finished within the year and published subsequently.

Monday Question: Immigration Motives

Coyote, in far more concise words than I probably could have generated, asks a very good question.

What I would really understand is: what drives these folks?

I will take them at their word that it is not racism.

If its violent or property crime, the stats are pretty clear that immigrants don’t really contribute to these crimes disproportionately.

If its gang violence at the border, I am wondering what people see in the law’s rules that allow easier harassment of day laborers and brown-skinned people with broken turn signals that they think is going to deter gang members supposedly armed with AK47’s.

If its competition for jobs, well, I encourage folks to learn how the economy actually works (hint: it’s dynamic, not static), and further, encourage them to figure out why they feel they can’t compete with unskilled, uneducated laborers who don’t speak the native language.

Finally, if it is, as many of my emailers claim, just a matter of the rule of law — “THEY ARE ILLEGAL” as I get in many emails, inevitably all in caps, then why not just legalize their presence? After all, I lament all the hardships associated with marijuana law enforcement but you don’t see me advocating new rules to incrementally harass potential possessors — I am grown up enough to know form history that such efforts are never going to work as long as their is an enthusiastic supply and demand. I advocate legalization.

So I’ll open this one up to the readers. I see a lot of completely wrong arguments for restricting immigration, and very few with any force (at least, very few that wouldn’t be SOLVED by a legal guest worker program bringing these people out of the permanent underclass).

So what do you think?

House Resolutions Are Silly

As a homebrewer and avid consumer of craft beer, even *I* find this silly:

Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

  1. supports the goals and ideals of American Craft Beer Week, as founded by the Brewers Association;
  2. recognizes the significant contributions of craft brewers to the economy of the United States;
  3. encourages beer-lovers of the United States to celebrate American Craft Beer Week through events at microbreweries, brewpubs, and beer stores across the United States to appreciate the accomplishments of craft brewers.

What will be even more screwy is if this non-action is killed by some overly-moralistic teetotaler who will fight against Craft Beer Week “for the children”.

I’d prefer they just ignore us. Getting Congress’ attention for anything is never a good idea.

The TSA Napoleon Complex

When I thought of all the ways the TSA body-scanning machines could end badly, surprisingly I didn’t hit on this:

A Transportation Security Administration screener is facing an assault rap after he allegedly beat a co-worker who joked about the size of the man’s genitalia after he walked through a security scanner. The May 4 confrontation involved Rolando Negrin, 44, and other TSA employees who had previously taken part in a training session at Miami International Airport, according to the below Miami-Dade Police Department reports. Negrin, pictured in the mug shot at right, and his co-workers had been training with new “whole body image” machines–the controversial kind that provide very revealing images of a traveler–when Negrin walked through the scanner. “The X-ray revealed that [Negrin] has a small penis and co-workers made fun of him on a daily basis,” reported cops. Following his arrest, Negrin told police that he “could not take the jokes anymore and lost his mind.” After work Tuesday evening, Negrin confronted fellow TSA screener Hugo Osorno in an airport parking lot. Negrin wanted to “resolve a problem,” and get Osorno, 34, to “finally respect him.”

Wow… Yet another person who would have benefited from this idea.

Hat Tip: Reason

NIMBY, Granny!

Oh dear.

“Stonemill Farms will be the scene of many memorable days with family and friends alike,” according to marketing materials. The development, with its $300,000 to $500,000 homes, is “the perfect place to raise a family,” the website boasts.

Sounds like a nice place. At least until the influx of the brain-devouring proto-zombie hordes (Alzheimer’s patients).

But maybe not if your family is like that of Woodbury resident Marilyn Nehring, whose husband, Jerry, has few memorable days now because he has Alzheimer’s disease.

Residents at Stonemill are opposing an attempt to turn an empty retail site into housing for people with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

Another man opposed it if there were “one-tenth of one percent chance that anything could happen to a kid.”

A woman holding a baby fretted that potential clients with brain damage probably led lives of daring and danger, which might return. They don’t have “the fear, the healthy fear, that the rest of us have,” she said.

Nearly everyone who spoke against the facility had concerns that their children might be attacked or see an elderly adult do something inappropriate.

Depressing. Just depressing. Now, I’ve had more experience with Alzheimer’s patients than many. Prior to college, I worked a summer in maintenance at a nursing home. The Alzheimer’s ward was easily the most depressing* of the entire complex, as some of these folks just didn’t have a handle on reality. For example, one particularly depressing patient constantly asked the nurses what time her (the patient’s) daughter would be arriving, since she was scheduled to come that day. Every day this woman was “waiting for her daughter”, and every day her wait was fruitless; I’m not sure she even had a daughter. Almost more heartbreaking were the families who would show up to see their loved one, only to not be recognized at all. I can’t imagine anything worse than having to go see a loved one in the hospital and dealing with the hurt of him/her not even knowing me.

That being said, there was no danger there.

The Alzheimer’s ward was locked down. Keycodes were required for entry and exit, doors were alarmed, and everyone in the place (including lowly maintenance workers like me) were well-trained on the security procedures. Staffing was far heavier in this ward than most (as the patients needed much more individual care), but even those who were fully ambulatory weren’t exactly threats to the community.

The summer I worked at that home (the summer of my 18th birthday) was definitely one of the better learning experiences of my life. As depressing as some of the areas of the home were, exposure to reality is part of life. At the very least, having that experience made me thankful for what I do have in life. Now, as a parent it is my responsibility to control what access my kids have to that reality, and at some ages I wouldn’t subject a child to some of these things. But I would do so out of respect for my own child’s ability, at a certain age, to fully comprehend a situation, not out of fear for his well-being. Even though there are locks on the doors, this is a hospital facility, not a prison.

Often these types of misconceptions about people are only heightened by insulating society from their very existence. These parents are merely inculcating the same misconceptions and paranoia into their own kids**. How sad.

Hat Tip: Free Range Kids
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Quote Of The Day

Hmm… Title of the post included below:

When bad economic news is good news

Productivity growth slowed from more than 6 percent during the final three quarters of 2009 to 3.6 percent during the first quarter of 2010. Generally, you want productivity growth to be as high as possible, but this is actually good news for the labor market. In the context of the recession, the weirdly high productivity growth meant that scared, overstretched workers were producing much more than they had before the recession, freeing employers from the need to hire new workers to increase their productive capacity. With productivity falling back to earth, employers will actually need to hire new people to keep up with demand, which means, well, hiring new people.

Yes, Ezra… It’s a GREAT thing that these potential employees will go back to producing the same jobs they formerly worked. After all, we wouldn’t want a world where they took NEW jobs producing currently un-invented products that would collectively raise the standard of living in the US. After all, it’s zero-sum, right?

Eliminate The Liability Cap For Offshore Drilling

Commenting on the efforts in Congress to increase the statutory liability cap that oil companies enjoy for damages caused by offshore drilling accidents, John Cole makes this point:

Here’s a revolutionary idea- why don’t we get rid of the limit altogether! If BP or Exxon cuts corners and makes a hash of things, and they cause 60 billion dollars worth of damage, they are on the hook for the whole 60 billion dollars! And if they can’t pay for the whole bill, the company is liquidated, the shareholders get wiped out, and the company ceases to exist.

Why don’t we give that a shot? And don’t tell me it is because no one will then undertake oil drilling. Of course they will! They’ll just pass on the costs to the consumer. And should being really careful and safe cost too much money, then it might just make other forms of energy look cheaper by comparison, and spur investment in those energy types.

So how about it? No more immunity, no more corporate welfare, no more subsidizing industries that don’t even pay a damned penny in taxes in the US anymore.

Cole is coming at this from the left, but I think he’s absolutely right from a free-market perspective.

If a company causes damages to others as a result of their activities — and in the case of something like offshore oil drilling the question of negligence wouldn’t even be an issue because of the inherently dangerous nature of the activity — why should their liability for those damages be capped in any amount ? And how can we really say that we’ve factored in all the costs of any activity when the consequences of the damages it might cause are shielded ?

Lift the cap, make BP pay.

Quote Of The Day

The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.
-Leo Tolstoy, 1897

(From the opening page of Michael Lewis’ The Big Short)

This Day in History: 40th Anniversary of the Kent State Massacre

From the Progressive/Left-wing DemocracyNow.org’s coverage:

Today marks the 40th anniversary of the Kent State Shootings. On May 4th, 1970, National Guardsmen opened fire on hundreds of unarmed students at an antiwar rally at Kent State University in Ohio. The guardsmen fired off at least 67 shots in roughly 13 seconds. Four students were killed and nine others wounded.

The events of May 4, 1970 at Kent State were certainly tragic but the notion that the Nation Guardsmen fired at “unarmed” students engaging in peaceful demonstrations is plainly untrue. In fact these “peace” protesters failed to practice what they preached as they set fires, looted, vandalized cars and buildings, and threw rocks and bottles at the police/National Guardsmen who tried to restore order. These anti-war protesters certainly didn’t practice the Libertarian “non-initiation of force” principle as they, like the U.S. government initiated force to attempt to accomplish a political goal.*

However, sending in the National Guard complete with semiautomatic M1 Garand rifles (.30-06 FMJ rounds) with fixed bayonets to suppress these riots seems to be a bit of an overreaction on the part of the governor.** The methods used to suppress these violent protests were very different from the less lethal methods police use today (which some say is a direct result of this event).

Were the National Guardsmen’s deadly actions justified self-defense? A full 40 years later, this is still a subject of great debate.

One thing which isn’t debatable is that this event was tragic and preventable.

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