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Empowerment through wrong is still wrong

Carlton Fletcher

Carlton Fletcher

I want to kill everybody in the world.

— Skrillex

I really should be past the point of being surprised by anything that’s submitted to this newspaper by its legion of squawkers and all the online commenters with the sharp wits and the clever pen names.

But every now and then something slips in that leaves me absolutely flabbergasted.

I don’t like to quote these modern-day Poor Richards directly and steal any of their substantial thunder, but the gist of one squawker’s recent post was that “anybody who supported” a measure that ran in opposition to this person’s point of view “should be killed.”

BAM! Just like that. No pussyfooting around, no beating around the bush for this man/woman of action. If they don’t agree with me, then let’s put them out of their misery.

The scary thing: I’m 99.4 percent sure this would-be executioner from parts unknown meant what he/she wrote. That’s what’s iffy about offering a forum for people who are not willing to express themselves openly: Some among them are emboldened by their anonymity, and the rest of us are left not knowing which ones to take seriously.

So I offer this next bit of advice only as an alternate view for everyone to consider. It is in no way meant to disparage any possible AK-toting squawker who feels his or her opinion is the only one that matters and anyone unable to grasp that fact should be put out of his or her misery immediately. Nothing but respect here.

But what in God’s name makes you think you have the inside track on all that is right and righteous in this nation, in this state or in this region? And why is it worth a death sentence to any who might defy you?

Hasn’t history shown that the only way to settle disagreements over certain hot-button issues is to discuss them openly? Can such fanatics not find it in themselves to consider that someone with an opposing viewpoint might have a valid idea or two?

I can’t help but equate this kind of thinking with the current Republican-led tactic of, essentially, doing nothing as the best way to address the myriad problems that are weighing our country down. Is holding out and hoping for a swing in the balance of power while the nation flounders really good for anyone other than the few very wealthy who have the funds to wait out the silly squabbles that seem to keep the lower classes occupied?

Sadly, it appears that most of the people who support such tactics are a disgruntled group who “want things back the way they used to be.” The burning question I have to ask, though, is how far back are we talking about?

Do we really want to go back to four or five years ago when the Bush administration brought the American economy down like a house of cards? Or are we talking about going all the way back to those idyllic days after World War II when gay meant happy, black people “knew their place,” foreigners weren’t welcome and young people kept their hair cut short and their opinions to themselves?

What some people seem to have trouble grasping is that the days of rule by self-appointed divine right are over. Those men and women who fought and died for our freedom did so for all of our freedom, not just the ones who look like us or think like us. It says so in that Constitution that is the basis for this experiment that’s called democracy.

Some seem to have trouble realizing that wrongs utilized to empower certain individuals or groups are still wrong, no matter how much we might personally enjoy their ill-gotten fruits. Twenty-first-century Americans, for the most part, seem to have forgotten the ideals that made their country great. That sacrifice for the greater good thing? Pshaw, not for them.

And until we come to the realization that freedom does not give us the right to infringe upon someone else’s freedom, we’ll continue to flounder as a nation.

Of course, we could just take the easy way out and kill off all the agitators ...

Email Metro Editor Carlton Fletcher at carlton.fletcher@albanyherald.com.

Comments

LuLu 2 years, 8 months ago

And there it is. I almost didn't keep going after the first paragraph, after once again being insulted by Mr. Fletcher. Why does he so enjoy insulting subscribers? You know we pay your salary, right? But I gave him the benefit of the doubt and kept reading. And midway through, there it was. His shot at Republicans. Doing nothing, you say? They are too busy fighting the corruption and blatant dishonesty of the Democrats to get anything done! You, too, need to get your head out of the sand and REALLY pay attention to what's happening around us.

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Shinedownfan 2 years, 8 months ago

I stopped after the third of fourth paragraph, went to look at the comment and found that like almost all of Carlton's columns, it's just not worth my time. Thanks, LuLu

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Abytaxpayer 2 years, 8 months ago

Carlton = "Complacent Democrat" : one who is marked by self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies

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gotanyfacts 2 years, 8 months ago

Part 1-

Carlton consistently displays two characteristics in his editorials; ignorance and defective logic. I suppose his ignorance is one of choice, ignoring facts that do not contribute to his view, while his logic appears to be based on a concept of reality is what one believes it to be.

I missed the comment he uses as his jumping off point, but assume someone has called for killing those with whom they disagree. Carlton pads his word count to say the "end does not justify the means", the truth of which depends on what end and what means are involved.

Carlton then uses both of his trademarks in tying the Republicans to the "I can't hear you because I disagree with you" crowd. He appears to be ignorant of jobs bills passed by the house, some of them with considerable democrat support, that once in the senate are blocked from discussion or being brought up for a vote by democrat majority leader Harry Reid. His faulty view of reality leads him to believe that Obama was open to opposing ideas when, in 2010 he said, "We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."

Then comes the typical liberal journalistic technique. Ask a question followed by a series of suggested answers to paint your opponent!

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gotanyfacts 2 years, 8 months ago

Part 2

Carlton says: "The burning question I have to ask, though, is how far back we are talking about? Do we really want to go back to four or five years ago when the Bush administration brought the American economy down like a house of cards? Or are we talking about going all the way back to those idyllic days after World War II when gay meant happy, black people “knew their place,” foreigners weren’t welcome and young people kept their hair cut short and their opinions to themselves?" Now Republicans and conservatives have answered these questions, but of course only liberals and democrats have the power to recognize reality! In case Carlton actually reads this, I will help him with the answers from my perspective:

(1) "Do we really want to go back to four or five years ago when the Bush administration brought the American economy down like a house of cards?” Answer: Contrary to your false reality, the economic disaster has more than one villain. Some of Bush's policies likely contributed to the problem. However, the collapse was in large part due to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Those toxic loans we hear about, came about due to pressure from democrats in congress to make loans to people who could not afford them. The Bush administration expressed concern about the financial stability of Fannie and Freddie and recommended changes in regulations to save them. Democrats responded by saying there was no problem and claimed the actions recommended were racist. Who was right? Remember that democrats controlled both houses of Congress the last two years of the Bush administration.

(2) “Or are we talking about going all the way back to those idyllic days after World War II when gay meant happy”: No, that's not what is on my mind. Why would it be?

(3) “black people “knew their place”: Again, No! And again, what makes you suggest it?

(4) ‘foreigners weren’t welcome”: Sure, foreigners who enter legally are very welcome. Do you suggest that expecting people to enter our country legally is anti-immigrant? (Maybe you do given your method of logic)

(5) young people kept their hair cut short and their opinions to themselves? Really? This came to mind? Okay, having had my hair shoulder length to a buzz, I could care less. Keeping opinions to themselves? Why should they? On the other hand if they express their opinions by interrupting speakers, usually conservative, who have been invited to speak on our college campuses, or by blocking the free movement of others not inclined to support them, or by taking over or destroying property, yes, I have a problem with how that has changed.

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Cartman 2 years, 8 months ago

Race bait much, Carlton? I am a Republican. I am also one who "wants things to go back the way they were". The only ones whom have ever equated this to race are liberal media members taking a cheap shot at Republicans, by intimating that is the motive. I have never heard it from a Republican. Quote one if you dare. "Going back to the way things were" means going back to when more people worked for a living; than were getting handouts from the government. It means not having the government in your face about wearing a seat belt; eating a cheesburger; or pushing socialism on American industry. It means having adults in charge of the economy.

I was in agreement with your comments in the article until you perverted logic by taking a leap that the death-wish squawker equated to the conduct of Republicans. It must be comforting to you to be so self-righteous. Why don't you tell us some other nonsense about Republicans, like they want to re-enslave everyone who isn't a conservative. You know we all carry evil looking AKs and secretly stalk the poor and downtrodden, awaiting a clean shot. You can also tell us some garbage about Democrat civil rights leaders like Gov. Lester Maddox and Gov. George Wallace. Or just tell us about terrible Republicans like President Abraham Lincoln.

Never mind. Just stick to simple race baiting. Facts just complicate things.

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buddy 2 years, 8 months ago

Gas prices are skyrocketing - It's Bush's fault....Millions of people are out of work - It's Bush's fault...Home construction is down - It's Bush's fault...Threats of war in the Middle East - It's Bush's fault.......now tell me again - who is the President?

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Albanite 2 years, 8 months ago

Editorials like this are killing the Herald's revenues. I stopped buying and advertising in your dying paper months ago - simply because decent people shouldn't support those who publish columns containing this type of baseless, misleading and ignorant trash.

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Sister_Ruby 2 years, 8 months ago

Wow you guys SERVED Mr. CF so bad that I bet he's over in the corner of his office in the fetal position calling for his mommie.

The good ol days that I'D like to go back to are when Division 1 Collegiate Athletes could speak good English, were genuine Students first and Athletes second, did not have to be 6'6" and weigh 300 pounds to even get looked at, and who GRADUATED at the end and became contributing citizens to their hometowns, their states, and this NATiON.

Smoke that tonight with your ganja, Mr. CF and see if it makes you puke your guts out. Probably will.

Oh, and apparently the referenced squawk has been removed because the SEARCH function does not produce the referenced squawk. Could you possibly have made this up? Or was it in reference to the Obamacare imposition on Religious Liberty that forces conscientiously objecting people to PAY for ABORTIONS (which is "killing")...therefore the referenced (now vanished) Squawk was arguing TIT for TAT.

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Sister_Ruby 2 years, 8 months ago

......and a play on conceptual words.............

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Sister_Ruby 2 years, 8 months ago

zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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Sister_Ruby 2 years, 8 months ago

Hold the presses....I just got a Message from the Holy Ghost via ZZ Top....

"Jesus just left Chicago"........I'm afraid Obama is going to be left out in the Cold this coming November. Don't know how. Don't know when. Don't know what. But it gonna happen. Sorry, Carlton. I jess gotta tells what the Holy Ghost pass on to me. "Water gonna turn to wine but ya'Boi gonna be leff behine...." God Said It!

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justme 2 years, 8 months ago

I like when Fletcher turns on the light and all of you start running like roaches with your facts and opinion, shows what Albany is about.

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