Note from Dan: The comment below first appeared on the Happy Halloween OPEN thread. It was written by a first-timer, “Ed,” a writer who lives in Bedford County. Welcome to the fray, Ed!
“As a moderate person and a military veteran who in his lifetime has voted for candidates of both political parties – and in 2000, neither, in the form of a protest vote for Ralph Nader – I think it’s time we all take a deep breath and try to inject common sense and decent sensibilities into what’s going on around us.
I read today that a Lynchburg city council member wants to ban all public meetings unless they’re in venues where people can bring their guns. The story mentions that on recent occasions, several have shown up with holstered guns proudly displayed. What kind of chilling effect does it have on public discourse when you want to express an opinion that’s contrary to the raving Tea Party member standing at the lectern patting the .45 on his hip? Or, when you’re a council member and about to vote on an issue the gun-toter opposes? Those questions are more than rhetorical. I encounter people every day whom I fully believe could, in their political rages, commit violence.
I’ve just returned from my daily lunchtime walk in Bedford. At the hospital, I found a Jeep SUV with crudely painted “Hate Obama” threats against Obama and other vicious, and several times misspelled, anti-government, anti-Obamacare slogans painted on every window except the windshield.
Several weeks ago, I went to my Bedford dentist. My profession requires me to be knowledgeable about healthcare – I write for a business magazine for a living, and frequently visit hospitals, doctors, insurers and others while reporting stories. Yet, once in the dentist’s chair, I was assailed by the hygienist with 30 minutes of anti-Obamacare, anti-government ignorance (I’m not calling her stupid, a slur, but if you don’t know something, that’s ignorance; I’m ignorant about many, many things – we all are). Read more »