Monday, 14 August 2017

Twenty Points of Kent State (1969)

Most people have zero memory or knowledge of Kent State and the shootings that occurred.  So, let me point out twenty points of this period, and the event.

1.  For weeks in the spring....around the downtown area of Kent, Ohio....groups of students had been in some protest mode.  It was no longer just a protest event on the campus....it was coming into the city itself.

2.  The campus had virtually no real police organization.  The city of Kent?  The city was in the 27,000 to 30,000 population range, and had a minimum police organization to meet what the locals regarded as 'economically wise'.  The city police department was not built to handle protests or actions involving more than a couple dozen people.

4. In the fall of 1968....nine months prior....the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) and a relatively unknown black student organization (the 1960s version of BLM)....had a confrontation of a light stance against recruitment folks appearing on the campus for the police.  Some people suggest that at least 200 black students from the campus were involved with this one confrontation.

5.  Things started to fully unravel around 1 April of 1969....when the SDS crowd came back into the picture again....entering the Kent State Administrative Office with demands.  Cops were called in this case.  The campus reacted by that evening by revoking the charter of the SDS organization.

6.  Two weeks go by after this 1 April event, and there is a discipinary hearing underway on campus.  There is some kind of confrontation at the hearing....between the SDS crowd (with the revoked charter), an the anti-SDS crowd.  No one ever says who made up the anti-SDS crowd, and it's one of the small mysteries left over from this event.  The campus chief decides that things are out of control and kids won't listen to the campus leadership....so cops get called (state cops, not local cops).  This would be a signal to the kids that things were moving up real quick.  Fifty-eight students were arrested that afternoon.  When the smoke cleared months later, there are four SDS members who are taken into a regional court, and given a sentence of six months in a state prison.  The rest end up with just simple jail fines.  No one talks much of the parents of the fifty-eight students in this SDS challenge to the campus, but one might assume that they woke up to realize that their kids were doing some pretty stupid stuff, and heavy lawyer effort was required.

7.  Around noon on 1 May 1969....a rally was held on campus with 500 students attending.  It broke up an hour later....with kids going back to classes.  The trigger to the rally?  The Vietnam War.

8.  Twelve hours pass....downtown in Kent....some excitement occurs around midnight...in the drinking zone of the town.  What is noted at this point is that a couple of people (maybe students, maybe locals, no one ever knows who these people were).....walked out of a bar, and threw bottles at a police car or two.  Fairly stupid act, one can admit.  Then they threw bottles at a store....then a couple of stores.  Finally, they threw a bottle to break a bank window....setting off an alarm.  This was the final straw for the local cops.   The number of bottle-throwers?  It's argued...some think it was in the neighborhood of twenty.....some say forty.  As reinforcement cops arrive....cops now say there are 120 people in the middle of the action facing the cops.  Probably way more than the cops could really handle.  History notes at this point that the group of 120 people are made up of students, bikers (no one could explain how they got into the action), and local drunks.  Virtually every single cop within twenty miles....was called to the middle of Kent that night.  As far as the mayor was concerned....he needed real muscle to come in and establish authority....the National Guard.

9.  On 2 May 1969, as the sun rose....the mayor had gone to request Guard members, establish a city emergency, and ordered all bars to be shut down for an unspecified period of time. No one says it today, but the 120 folks from that night before....probably were mostly all drunk.

10.  Somewhere on the morning of 2 May, one of the major rumors was that the students now had arms (weapons).  It was never proven true, but the rumor set off things in a very negative way.  Shutting down the bars....also went in a negative way.

11.  The National Guard began arriving on 2 May.  By that evening, they'd started to arrest anyone who was violating a curfew that had been put into place.

12.  3 May arrived....Sunday morning.  The governor had no patience left with the students.  Some students had come downtown in the morning to help clean up the mess that had been left from Friday night.  Most of the business community didn't trust these students, and it's a big question if this was legit or just a fake effort.

13.  As sun-down occurred....a confrontation occurred with the Guard guys and students.  Tear gas was dispersed.  Arrests were made.

14.  4 May: There is supposed to be a student protest at noon.  The college says 'no', no protest will occur.  Two companies of Guard folks arrived and were dispersing the protest.  It's held on campus grounds....so the campus did have the right to forbid the protest.  If they'd done this off-campus....it would have been better for the community.

15.  Things get fuzzy with the confrontation.  There are at least fifty different variations told.  Some say shots were heard by the Guard folks and they reacted.  Some suggest the Guard folks were scared of unfolding events.

16. Twenty-nine Guard guys fired weapons.....at least 67 rounds fired....four dead students and nine wounded.

17.  In the hour after the shooting....a lot of students were preparing for a massive rush against the National Guard.  This was prevented only by a couple of the professors getting into the middle of this and telling the students to disperse and go home.  If they hadn't stopped the students?  One might assume that at least a hundred more dead students would have been laid out.

18.  While the news media carried the images widely, an odd thing happened with virtually every single campus across the US.  Protest actions were absolutely forbidden.  If you engaged in the activity, you were terminated as a student.

19.  As much as the news media did to shift blame....roughly sixty-percent of the American public put the blame solely upon the students....not the Guard members.

20.  The Scranton Commission was formed, and it's one single purpose was to study protests on campuses across the US and report what was going on. For some, they were shocked at the way that these were organized and the groups who were behind the efforts.

So you look at what is going on today, and you see an entire repeat about to occur.

Nationalists Socialist 'Bait'

I probably heard the term "Nazi" or "neo-Nazi" mentioned at least forty times yesterday (Sunday) by the news media folks.  I sat and pondered upon this often misused term.

If you go and pull up the listing of political platforms for the 1932 Nationalists Socialists Party (the Nazis).....it's an interesting text.  Roughly 32 items.

So you go down the list....using modern-day English to explain what the Nazis support.

Then you read them to a dozen of these noted neo-Nazi-type guys from Virginia.

Out of the 32-odd items....there might be four of the actual platform pieces that the Nazi guy agrees upon.  The other 90-percent?  No.  These are all socialist in nature, and these guys are NOT socialists.

So you turn, and you face the news media folks....reading them the 32-odd platform items.  Oddly, they will tell you that they are against five or six of these, but the bulk of these (probably in the 75-percent range)....they actually favor.

It's not that we have neo-Nazis....it's that we have pretender Nazis who want a name-brand to stand behind and they think Aryan power is the only piece of the cake.  So when you lay out the socialist nature of the Nazis...well....these guys just aren't that type of Nazi.

Rather than educate people and make them aware of the fake nature of this whole discussion....which has gone on for decades....we just simply allow it to continue.

The Charlottesville Soap Opera

I sat this morning and read through some pieces on the Charlottesville, VA episode from the weekend.....then I went and watched private video shot.  There is a differing situation....if you watch the video and try to compare against what the media wrote.  My three observations:

1.  Whatever cops were there...were just as some 'show-horse' routine.  Their orders were to stand down and you can watch the video to confirm that it's theater-piece more than public order.  The governor or the head 'dude' who ordered the 'show-horse' routine?  They aren't explaining their gimmick but if you drag this into a court of law....their leadership authority is marginalized.  The general public will ask what good is it.....to have cops or state police, if you don't use them?

2.  This young lady.....which I am sad over her passing....if you watch the video of the incident, she had to put herself into a position where the car would hit her.  I suspect that she felt that he wouldn't move and her body would effectively stop the movement.  It was an very unwise situation, and in a court of law....her action (even though she's dead)....might not be enough to convict this kid.  In a jury situation...most will ask how they would react, in a car, with a crowd thumping on the vehicle.

3.  The term 'neo-Nazi' gets thrown around a lot these days.  So.....pull out the thirty-odd political platform stances of the German Nationalist Socialist Party of 1932, and read them in modern language.  There's maybe four items which these wannabe-neo-Nazi guys would agree with, and the other 90-percent are NOT going to be agreeable.  None of these neo-Nazi guys are socialists....so this whole term and MISUSE (for over forty years) is bizarre and comical.  The news media and intellectual guys like using the term Nazi, but if you use the political platform sequence....they themselves are more Nazi....than the neo-Nazi guys they point fingers at.

The end?  No.....this is all just act one of a twelve-act soap opera.

The Harper Story

Over the weekend, I picked up this story from Harper's Bazaar.  The emphasis of their article is that if you are a logical woman (Democrat obviously), then you should separate and divorce from your husband (if he is a Trump GOP guy).  I should note.....I don't subscribe to Harpers......I simply read the storyline itself.

I sat and paused over this for a while.

Harper's Bizaar has been around for about 150 years.  It was the magazine that claimed to know fashion and put out the newest trends to the general public.  If you look at subscription levels today....three-quarters of a million are still sold.  What Harpers can say is that they do know fashion.  They don't claim to know much on diesel cars, Hawaii hotels, best cakes for a diet, or dog training.  They simply know fashion.

If you went looking for a magazine....it's a bit hard to find these days.  You'd have to go to a book-store or to an airport shop.  Asking women around who read it?  Well....go find the twenty-five women who you might meet up with or associate with.....and ask if they subscribe.  It's pretty high odds that working class women don't read it.

As for this idea?

Let's say your wife of fifteen years read the article and decided then and there....yep....divorce this Trump-guy.  Paperwork gets done....stamped.

About three months go by and she's now thinking....well....I need to date.

So she write up the situation....forty-year-old woman....can't date a Republican guy....must only be Democrat.  No losers, no married guys, no football freaks, no gay guys, and in short fashion....she's got a 40-filter list.  Five months go by now, and the gal needs help.

So a friend says she knows the right guy.  He shows up for the date.  He's got Birkenstocks sandals on....no socks....hair tied up in a pony-tail....hippy-like character....hints that he's 402-friendly (marijuana friendly)....makes homemade brownies with a funny taste.....a Bernie-type personality....and seems to know an awful limited amount of information on any general topic.

As desperate as you are....you accept this situation for three months.  Weekend after weekend.....you feel like this really is screwed up.

So one year after the divorce, you do something crazy.  You take all the Harper's Bizaar magazines in the house and burn them.  You go and call the divorced husband up....the Trump guy....and ask if he's free.  He has women lined up but he's willing to let you crawl back.  You accept the situation because on the list of good features....he met 80-percent of what you wanted in life for a guy.  Sure, he's a Trump guy....but you could do a lot worse.

Not to slam Harpers.....but they ought to stick with fashion.  The next thing you know.....they will advise you on nuclear energy or climate change.

The American in Dresden Story

As the story is told from various news sources.

An American was up and active at around 8:15AM on Saturday....in Dresden.  This was in the Neustadt neighborhood of town....north of Elbe.  This part of town is away from the tourist area.  The guy, no name given.....41 years old.....was drunk (on the extreme side).  Yeah, it's 8:15AM....so he's been drinking all night by my guess.

He does some talk here and there.....then throws up a Nazi salute....which gets him attacked by some German.  No one says what provoked the deal beyond the Nazi salute.  Cops come....arrest the guy.

Based on the normal fine business, if the story is proven absolute true.....it'll be near 500 Euro on the Nazi salute, and some type of fine (maybe 200 Euro) for public intoxication and bad behavior.

My typical advice to Americans and Brits.....enjoy the fine beer of Germany in the bier-garten type atmosphere, and avoid three particular topics:

1.  Anything to do with WW II or Nazis.
2.  Anything to do with Trump.
3.  Anything that is harsh and critical of the magnificent Germans (sarcasm inserted into this column).

For the poor American?  His trip will be cut short and he'll likely be asked to leave.

The Antarctica Story

Over the weekend, if you follow science news....there was a fair bit written over Antarctica.  Few realize it....but there are lots of volcanoes on the isle.

So they've done more research and finally determined that at least 91 volcanoes exist there.  Yep....91.

Some of these are under extremely thick ice sheets (maybe 2 miles).

One of the analysts finally sat there and put the worst-case scenario up.  All that ice....sitting in the midst of a massive amount of volcanic activity.  One big huge eruption.....a TON of ice will melt off.  Sea level rise?  No one says the magic number, but you could go and figure a six-foot rise very easily across the entire globe.  A change in climate?  Oh yes.

As much as folks sit and worry about man-made causes to the planet.....the might Earth itself, with these ice sheets in Antarctica....could easily be melted without any human-activity.

Just another thing on the list of 10,000 things that could ruin your day.