It's been some time now since I added Charles Pierce's 'The Politics Blog' over at Esquire to my daily blogroll. His righteous indignation coupled with his madcap prose stylings are sui generis and often hilarious. But, although Pierce is the proprietor and primary contributor to the blog, other writers are sometimes featured. Among them is a semi-regular whom I've come to increasingly appreciate named Lt. Col. Robert Bateman.
Bateman is active-duty Army, 'an infantryman and a Military Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)' and currently stationed in England. His primary recurring feature at 'The Politics Blog' is the Civil War Reenactment an as-it-happened 150 years ago today recounting of the military events of the Civil War. But he's not one of those sentimentalists who appreciate the beauty and valor of the South's struggle. He unapologetically refers to it as The War of Southern Rebellion and considers Robert E. Lee a traitor. The last installment in the series to date had Grant stalemated just a few miles from Richmond.
But he also writes on other topics. He has been strong in his denunciation of sexual assault and rape in the military, as in this recent post. And he has been increasingly critical of our country's gun culture.
In this post from May 21, he championed the group Mothers Demand Action Against Gun Violence for their successful confrontation of Open Carry Texas over guns at Chipotle:
"Open Carry Texas" (which I think of as "Wimps With Mommy Issues"), conducted an open carry, en masse, at a Chipotle Restaurant — then the moms shared the word. They posted pictures of these morons carrying rifles in a family restaurant. Then they asked that the chain bar weapons on their private property. As Founder Shannon Watts put it: "The Chipotle petition received more than 10,000 signatures within just a few hours." The corporation realized where their business interests lie and that guns are wrong in their establishments across the entire nation.
These women are doing what nobody else had managed to do before now. They are actually affecting change. Not through legislation, but through the free choice they have to patronize, or to NOT patronize, private companies that allow guns to be carried in their stores, restaurants, malls, and more.
I thought that was pretty bold. But there's even stronger stuff in today's post, headlined: 'That's It. I Am Coming Home."
This is too much. We have Tea Party political activists shooting cops from behind, in the head, then covering their dead bodies with the Tea Party “Gadsden” flag and shouting, “The Revolution begins now!”
No. I am coming home. I need to be there and be part of the solution. Moms Demand Action is getting some traction, but they can use the lean-in of a few U.S. Army Airborne Infantry Rangers. I am only sorry that I did not stand up to this threat to our nation before. I am sorry. I was busy.
I have been overseas in Afghanistan and in NATO nations for half a decade while the insanity of the National Rifle Association expanded and exploded, and the NRA became, essentially, the tool of death in the United States. They made mass killings normal.
It's pretty much an open declaration of war on the NRA. He is a brave man. He has already received a lot of hate mail. So, he seems to have no illusions about the risks. But he openly taunts them:
Wimps need guns. Come and get me.
Oh, and if you try to go lethal, to convince me that your rhetoric is more intellectually compelling than my own written words, I am going to be giggling at the Las Vegas odds on you, with your guns, and me.
So there is that. Bring it on, little boys.
Anyway, I am very proud of him and I wanted to bring him to your attention because he deserves our support and encouragement.