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How America May Amend Its Gun Culture

During the 1960s and 1970s, the Vietnam war dragged on for over a decade. Opposition to a military draft that required youth to become involved in it, regardless of what they thought of it, led to the burning of draft cards, marches on Washington D.C., and, eventually, the elimination of the military draft in the country, and the end of the war itself.

That didn't mean America suddenly became pacifist. No, that would be naive to find possible. However, America never again tried drafting anyone. Wars proliferated after the Vietnam war on a smaller but more numerous and clandestine scale, including in neighboring Cambodia, throughout Latin America in the following decade, and in the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa after that. War for the U.S. became more and more remote, culminating with Bush's all volunteer occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq and Obama's drone wars. Tours of duty were extended again and again and bombing done from thousands of miles away, with a draft being avoided as much as possible.

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The 1970s, 2010s: Who Programmed the Simulation?

The world does seem in dire straits indeed and has for roughly the last five years or so. The seeming progress of Barack Obama's election cascading in to regular civil strife and civil war in the United States, where racial and gender harmony, worked on for so many decades, appears torn to shreds. Cities are on fire, under fire or being torn apart. A rivalry with Russia, which is held responsible for the election of Donald Trump has been stoked again between America and the rest of the west. China is on the ascent, as is intolerance, cultural malaise, fear, despair and disappointment.

All of this seems horrible and is until a thought comes in. We've been here before. A friend of mine, Larry Bernard (who can be seen commenting on comic book movies) told me that "all Obama and Trump did was take us back to the 1970s." During his election, Barack Obama was compared to Kennedy for many reasons, from his charisma to his minority status. According to Roger Stone's book, Donald Trump was personally told by Richard Nixon during the 1980s that he would make a "fine president" and Trump's tacit support of Roy Moore in Alabama reflects Nixon tacit support of segregationist George Wallace.

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Interview With Bay Area Catholic Author Stefan Salinas Part One

Originally posted at Radical Second Things: 

I met Stefan unexpectedly last week while I was at the Bay Area Book Festival. I came across his two children's book - Catholic Churches Big and Small and A Muslim Family's Chair for the Pope - and instantly thought that both were a perfect match for Radical Second Things. I got copies of both and Stefan agreed to an interview. Hopefully it leads to more - he is perfect for this project!

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Radical Second Things: This is the Chance for Americans to Rebuild and Take Control

The United States is in crisis mode and feels like it has since roughly 2014. There were abnormal and bizarre mass shootings like the Aurora shooting in 2012 that seemed to be hinting at something weird but life still seemed normal. When the Obama administration's militarization of the police collided with racial tensions in Feguson, Missouri, however, the U.S. got crazier than I've ever seen.

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Trump Gets Lynched

Like most who probably are reading this, I tried during the ascent of Donald J. Trump to make sense of what on earth we were witnessing.

First there was the idea that he was a Clinton plant (which may be partially true) - there to be the perfect candidate for Clinton to defeat as she finally gets the presidency she has wanted for so, so long. Clinton and Trump were friends for quite a long time - there are social pictures of the Clinton and Trump camps together going back almost as far as I have been alive.


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