27 September, 2020

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America’s Insane Gun Culture: Second Amendment Must Be Repealed

By Kumar David

Prof. Kumar David

America’s insane gun culture: US Constitution’s Second Amendment must be repealed

A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed” ~ Second Amendment of the US Constitution

Gunman Stephen Paddock, acting alone so far as is known, fired an automatic weapon from the 32-nd floor of the Mandalay Hotel, Las Vegas, at ten on Sunday (1 Oct) evening over the hotel grounds and a busy road into an open plaza, venue of a concert, killing 58 people and injuring 500. I was in the next hotel (Luxor) on Tuesday morning and walked out to see the broken windows through which he shot and the plaza across the street. Several guns were found in his hotel room and dozens in his home in a quiet retirement neighbourhood. The city was in shock and as expected many said “This is fishy there must be more to it than meets the eye”. The Las Vegas Police declared “What we know is Stephen Paddock is a man who spent decades acquiring weapons and ammo and living a secret life”. And that’s where today’s morality play starts.

The first ten amendments to the US Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights, are not in the conventional sense amendments. They were enacted at the time and in the process of enacting the Constitution but placed in a annexe because of complex processes between Congress and States. The well-known First Amendment guarantees freedom of speech and faith and effectively makes the US a secular state; splendid provisions. (Backward Lankans demand religious bigotry and racial bias in the constitution). The Tenth Amendment stipulates that all powers not explicitly allocated to the Centre belong to the States – the opposite of Lanka. If the First and Tenth clauses in the Bill of Rights are exemplary, the Second is palpably asinine. Where in the world, except bandit enclaves and remote regions like Pakistan’s inaccessible North West Frontier, is one allowed to store an arsenal at home or cart it along when visiting the mother-in-law? If a weirdo, or for that matter anybody, can legally procure, store and employ a jaw-dropping armoury, isn’t the legal system god-awful weirder?

About 75% of Americans support the country’s insane gun-culture

But seriously, the US has the worst statistics in many ways. With 113 guns per 100 people it has more guns in private hands than mortal souls on terra firma! Except Central America’s de facto failed states Columbia, El Salvador, Honduras, Venezuela and a few others, the US has the world’s highest firearm related homicide rate. As against 3.6 per 100,000 people per years in US, the statistic in other rich countries is Hong Kong (0.00), Singapore (0.02), UK (0.06), Germany (0.07), Australia (0.16), France (0.21 and Canada (0.38). Not just lower, but one or two orders of magnitude smaller! There is no denying, though numb-skulls swear against the proposition: Unchecked availability of guns is responsible for a very high homicide, gun related suicide and accidental death rate in America.

The National Rifle Association (NRA), a big time right-wing political outfit masquerading as a sporting association, pours money into the election coffers of reactionary Congressional, Senatorial and Presidential candidates. It opposes curbs on sales, control, ownership, licencing, and background checks of prospective buyers. It is more insidious than the Ku Klux Klan because the latter is written off as a bunch of neo-Nazi loonies, and more pernicious than Lankan monks with a politico-religious agenda. The dreadful problem in America is that the public supports the unquestioned sale, retention and use of guns. The country is a slave to gun culture. A 2016 Gallup-BBC showed that while 35% of Americans supported hand-gun ownership in the 1960s it has risen to over 75% by 2015.

If you declare Lankans stupid on religion and race you will have to award the same ranking to Americans on guns. The Second Amendment (2A) must be repealed but the public won’t support this. Sensible things are often not possible because of people’s stupidity. I admire the US in many respects; its top universities are the best, its technology and scientific achievements, broadly, still unsurpassed and it is an open and plural society. Tens of thousands of people of all races and faiths frequently protest racial and religious injustice. But with a few exceptions Sinhalese Buddhists and Catholics/Christians did not lift a finger to halt the carnage of 1958, 1977 and 1983 – the leaders of the day actually egged it on. To my knowledge few Tamils took a stand against LTTE terrorism against civilians. Nevertheless though thousands of whites join civil rights campaigns and oppose anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim bias, this is soured by public foolishness on the gun issue in the US.

Merchants of fake news

Con artist Donald Trump popularised the term ‘fake news’ but it his cohorts who are expert at the black art. A proliferation of false propaganda led to Silicon Valley corporations facing scrutiny over their role in allowing false news to reach millions on their platforms. YouTube aired conspiracy theory videos claiming the shooting was a hoax, outraging survivors and victims’ families. Thereafter tech companies made little effort to prevent the spread false and offensive propaganda. YouTube, Facebook and Google spread false reports within hours and promoted right-wing conspiracy theories misidentifying the killer as a Democrat opposed Donald Trump, member a Muslim terror group and a person on a FBI watch list. Media personalities Alan Jones and Wayne Allyn Root who claim millions of listeners made incendiary remarks such as “Ladies and gentlemen, the October Revolution is here, the shooting is orchestrated by shadowy global forces fomenting war in America” and “Las Vegas is in the throes of a coordinated Muslim terror attack”. Leading ABC commentator Jimmy Kimmel was moved to respond “No breathing human on this planet produces more fake news than Donald Trump”.

Progressive Democrats such as Nancy Polanski do not mention repeal of 2A, though it is undeniably clear to any creature with a brain that this is should be done. Reflect on the misery of our wiser constitution drafters who know that the provisions on Buddhism/Religion are relics that should be jettisoned but they are bound hand and foot by intolerant public narrow-mindedness. Our drafters are constrained to juggle with “unitary”, éekiya”, “united and indivisible” and such bosh instead of a bold declaration of devolution of power away from the centre. So too Polanski, Bernie Sanders and the US Democrats are struggling to do only what is possible: Get some sort of bipartisan gun-control legislation pushed through instead of full-blooded repeal of 2A.

In Rakhine State, Burma soldiers use murder, rape and fire to drive hundreds of thousands of Rohingya from their homes. (References to jihadist terrorism and Wahhabism are to pull the wool over the eyes of public opinion). Burma is in transition from military rule to democracy with power still split between the two. But civilian politicians, including Aung San Suu Kyi have not lifted a finger in defence of the Muslim Rohingya. True, Suu Kyi is no Gandhi or Mandela in moral stature and her elected cohorts are not free of prejudice, but anti-Muslim bigotry is as pervasive in Burma as it is in Lanka. In this context standing for the rights of the Muslim minority there is more dangerous than making concessions to Tamils in Sri Lanka. Burman Buddhists will not hesitate to support a military coup and a return to dictatorship if the government attempts to protect Muslims.

Max Fisher and Amanda Taub say in the New York Times of 5 October: 

Quote: “It goes to show that even a partial transition to democracy imperil the ideals it is meant to protect. But how valuable is democracy if it leads to harsh, majoritarian populism, forcing the weak to pay a high price for that democratic option? At what point does an elected government lose moral authority? Today’s nascent democracies are held to a much higher moral standard than older ones were in their early days? The United States relied on slave labour and waged brutal ethnic cleansing against Native Americans. Europeans used slavery, torture and oppression to control their colonies. The atrocities are abhorrent and shameful, but it is easy for us to see it from the comfortable vantage of today’s wealth and stability. Much of what we have today is derived from the oppression of others. We need to take a cold, hard look at the difficulties of establishing democracy”. End quote.

We in Sri Lanka too need to take a cold hard look at these issues of fractured democracy in the context of an ever receding prospect of an even half-decent constitution – anodyne fixes aside.

Am I too harsh on Suu Kyi and the yahapalanaya government? The former terminated outright military dictatorship, the latter saw off the repressive and corrupt Rajapaksa regime; both valuable feats not to be belittled. So the purpose of my harsh criticism is to halt backsliding, and if need be, to move forward another step to a better alternative.

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  • 4
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    American Values: Guns are just one aspect of the lopsided values that Americans have. A few weeks before the Las Vegas shooting, the 19-year-old cat belonging to one of my relatives living in USA died. This started a terrific wave of postings in the FB where everyone was mourning the death of the cat.

    I jokingly posted that I hope that, on my death, I would get half the sympathy that this cat is getting. There was a huge wave of aggressive response from the shocked cat lovers and in my next post I said that ‘Guys, it is just a cat! Think of the people who are dying everyday all over the world due to US policies”.

    The response to that was terrible, one (a Jew) even calling me an ‘asshole’, something even CT commentators have not done – yet.

    One comment led to another and finally I mentioned the bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki. The Hiroshima bomb caused the instantaneous death of 80,000 civilian men, women and children. Another 80,000 died within 4 months. I said that since the Japanese were cat lovers, around at least 100,000 cats must have also been killed by the bomb. So why are you guys lamenting death of one stupid old cat?

    Apologies were demanded and as none came I was unfriended by the whole crowd including the close relative, whose final comment was that the bombs were necessary to stop the war. With that type of attitude, you can expect more of such shooting sprees in the US as the one that occurred in Las Vegas.

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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

  • 2
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    Most ludicrous argument to be made. Will never happen. This a complex issue. There are over 500 million guns in the USA and only a few do violent acts. We for example, cannot compare the situation in Australia with that of the USA. The original intent of the Founding Fathers was to form citizen militias to protect against tyranny and overreach of the government. USA has a totally different culture than any other western democracy. A lot of people do not trust the Federal government. Individual rights are still sacrosanct despite many assaults on it at different times by either liberal regimes or conservative regimes. I have no problem with the Second Amendment. Clearly the time it was written (the 2nd)a gun fired a iron ball from a single shot Musket. No one imagined that machine guns that were designed to kill by the dozen will become standard issue. A serious debate on this will NEVER happen as long as Republicans are in control at State, Local and also at National level. I support the first and second and all amendments to the constitution. Some commonsense regulations maybe required but no; we will not repeal the Second Sir. Also who knows we might have to invoked the 4th section of the 25th Amendment.

  • 3
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    Some Cities require citizens to have a gun/guns to protect their homes by law to prevent violent breaking and entering crimes. After such legislation was passed, B&E dropped. A person who is trained to use a firearm and takes classes and goes to a range regularly for fun shooting should not be deprived of that. Your arguments are ludicrous and far out liberal lefty loony. As an American I support a citizen’s right to bear arms. Here is the Text in that context “”A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” Such language has created considerable debate regarding the Amendment’s intended scope.(Wiki)

    If Tamils citizens of Sri Lanka Guns they could have protected themselves against marauding mobs in 1983. If Sinhala citizens had guns they could have protected themselves better against JVP terrorism. Border guards were given guns and it helped almost immediately to protect villagers and villages from marauding Tamil Tiger terrorists. Guns by themselves are not the issue. It is the type of guns that were designed for warfare and not handguns or rifles that are the issues.

    • 2
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      I agree that guns are necessary for defensive purposes. The problem in America is that not enough people are making use of the 2nd amendment and carry defensive weapons. If the music lovers had guns (preferably AK 47’s or M- 16’s) they could have sent a barrage of shots at the window in the 32nd floor through which the lone gunman was firing instead of running like rats and getting killed in the process.

      • 2
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        Yes, Gun culture is there but I dont think American society would allow them to run amok easy. The problem in sl has been, since the war is no longer there, they the authorities have not made every efforts to go after former army deserters adn get their stolen weapons back. They can still do this. Today, all the drug traffickers and other high crimes including contract killings are being mastered by former army deserters. This was not overlooked, Rajapakshe men abused those men giving them more powers but forgetting that would become a serious threat to the public in the future.
        Rajapakshe crime culture has been infiltrated to every corners of the country today. Balumgala is a radio program that reveal some of those contract killers.. most of them have been former army deseters, so called chandi. Why the former head of state made no efforts to go after them and get them caught ? ruined the nation to all core.

        And not to forget America is a country with 323 millions of people. Lately, I happened to visit Boston. There I go tto know how strict their police have been. Even rail conductors behave like commandos in some trains. It is unbelievable to see them if you would travel there from Europe. Only thing I did not like in Phensilvenia was you always need to rely on UBER.Unlike the case in Europe or even srilanka, you cant rely on public transport. If you dont have your own vehicle, you are lost.

  • 0
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    There are many sides to the American gun debate. Since direct links are not allowed , Mr. Kumar David go to YouTube and check on Ben Shapiro’s view on this. He breaks down multiple myths about American gun crime vs other countries. He is one of many American conservatives that’ll tear most liberal gun control arguments. Unlike many countries “right to bear arms” is enshrined in their constitution. And if Tamils’ had the right to bear arms (at least within the confines of their private property) they could have taught those thugs & butchers who killed so many innocent Tamils and destroyed their property a strong hard lesson. The US constitutions actually allows armed militias so they could stand up to a “Tyrannical Government”. Sounds familiar?

  • 2
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    If the Muslims in Jaffna had guns, they need not have followed the orders of LTTE to get out in 24 hours {or was it 48 hrs?).

    If the people were allowed to have guns then they could have refused to hand them over to the JVP when groups of them went from house to house looking for guns and ID cards. It is not a matter of owning guns only. The number of trained users also matters. we could have seen some exciting gun battles in the villages if the at least the male family members were trained in the use of guns in each household.

    In the movie ‘Patriot’ starring Mel Gibson, a family defends themselves against the marauding members of the Southern army. Even the youngest brother of about 12 takes part in an exciting ambush on the marauders.

    Even now it is not too late to relax Sri Lankan gun laws so that the Putujjana can get guns of their choice and fight against the drug dealers, kappamkarayas and political thugs, without waiting for the Police to arrive. And we know from movies that the Police arrive only after all the action is over.

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      Edwin Mahathayo, we dont talk about Muslim having guns, but just focus if Ghansara et al together wth those stood loudly as they could agaisnt ROHINGYA refugees had guns, they would have run amok even going beyond the some amer freerunners would do. Today s problem in our place is, those army deserters too enjoy the impunity being hindered so called respect earned by Army and forces after defeating terror within the boundaries.
      Even highly abusive Army men in action escape from not being subjected to due investigaitons even if theykilled innocient in the near past most likey in the post war era. They have become Chandis in every corner that would be ready to do the next contract killing. Society is feared of that, but there is not yet systems to catch them. I hate the situation, even if they talk loud and light abou tthe the situation today.
      I think all the drug traffickers, contract killers have been former ARMY deserters majorly. Those statitians should bring them to public. today.
      I heard both south and nother areas they run killings on collosal sums today.
      Why the law would not act on them- why cant they the authorties react as SINGAPORE. not at once but at least little by little.
      Those high men in Pradheshiiya saba or other councils should be hung by their balls to liberate the nation let alone today.

      • 1
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        The article is talking about JVP times and LTTE times. I think my comments are relevant. Anyway, Burampi Unnahe, why do you expect others to talk exclusively about the same topics that you do? You seem to have a chip on the shoulder about army deserters, perhaps for very good reasons. I suggest you write an article exclusively on the Army deserters Gnanasara et. al. so that we may get some idea of your thinking.

        Hope you take my comment in the right spirit and not get offended.

        • 0
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          I di dnot got to read the aritcle, I just focus on the COMMENTS only. I dont like ot read abstract articles of David s or the like very often.
          I just add my thoughts as a commenter.

          I simply focus GUN culture and its influence to lanken society today.

          Edwin appu got it fully wrong. I dont want Edwin or any others to talk ou tof the topic which is being addressed on this forum. There I agree with ANYONE.

          • 1
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            Tamils and Muslims: Burampi Unnahe, funny but I used to do the same – Comment on the comments without reading he main article but for entirely different reasons.

            I think there are very good reasons why you do not want me to divert from what you mistakenly think is the main topic. Even Prof. Kumar David, being of a certain ethnicity, does not want to talk about the travails that the Jaffna Muslims went through under the LTTE. I am not saying that he is trying to white wash the LTTE. No certainly not. But being a Tamil, he is still dead scared of them. Who can say for sure that there are no Kotiyas in the jungle? The laws probability that AKD knows well, tell him there could still be at least a few cornered ones. And the cornered ones are the dangerous ones.

            Who can say that what is applicable to AKD is not applicable to our Little Burampi? Looks like the similarities between them go far deeper than skin deep. I can understand how embarrassing the whole episode of forced Muslim exodus was to LTTE and others like AKD and Little Burampi. Here we have the LTTE fighting one of the most brutal wars in the history of the world purportedly to protect the Tamils from the Sinhalese, while at the same time raining unimaginable atrocities on a minority who lived amongst them. No wonder that the Muslims helped us to get rid of the Tiger Terrorist menace.

            • 0
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              What a theroy, as we know Punchi burapmi adds his wihtout being baised to anyone. So are other guys that seem FREE from Rajapakshe but to stand against them.

              You Edwin the man who went missing over the few months, since the death of IH, cant know all these. Besides, you shoudl also be in the age of IH not to have gotten them properly.

              You understand things on the other way around Mr Rodrigo… that you proved not once several dozens of times.. That was the reason you to become very NOGO like few months ago on this platform. Some like Taraki may still be one of your single fan. But most found yours have always been out of topic or beyond all margins.

              However, even if some guys would be stinky by birth, they can become clean later. That I am beleiving in.

              Good luck ! hope your come back would not create new rpoblems to us REGULAR posters.

      • 2
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        Buramphisincho, as an interested bystander let me assure you that you cannot hang a man by his balls. The weight of his body ensures that his genitals are torn off, a huge amount of blood is spilled and your new floor is ruined. Believe me I have tried, why do you think Tamil Veddah writes with a limp these days?

        • 1
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          Thanks Taraki, and nice to have you back. Having passed the stage of commenting without reading the main article, I have reached the next stage of commenting on the comments without reading the comments. I do no know what the next stage is. But this is entirely virgin territory for me. And I am enjoying it.

          It is somewhat like the 4 stages one is supposed go through on the way to enlightenment.

          That is why I must have missed the reference to Little Burampi’s tiny balls. You say: Buramphisincho, as an interested bystander let me assure you that you cannot hang a man by his balls. Hold on there. The reason why one cannot hang Burampi by his balls is not because they are too small but because there are no balls that the hangman can use. To put it more clearly, he has NO BALLS! That is why he is so scared of saying anything against the Tigers.

          Of course, one should be careful not to extend this theory to my teacher AKD.

          • 1
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            Hello Edwin, I had no idea that Burampi Singho was seedless, how fascinating! Was he kicked in the balls causing them to disintegrate? I ask because it is a very painful experience, even more painful than giving birth.

            Women often say that giving birth is the most painful experience and that men cannot possibly understand it. Well that is true, however a few years after giving birth a woman will often say “You know, it might be nice to have another child”.

            On the other hand you never find a man saying “You know I quite fancy being kicked in the balls again”. I rest my case.

            • 1
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              Taraki why not you have a check on your gender: You sound to be a woman not disrepecting them.
              Just become Edwin spare wheel – he can give your a better life Taraki. Lately the bugger droped down loads of boast him to be earning 5 figure salary in dollars/month.
              I really dont know just BSc graduate who hardly got through could end up earning that much. ANyways, we must not envy . . so long his funds would have been invested in Home country. ::: I respect even any poor house maid or room boys that contriubute to lanken foreign exchange amouting 8 billion (per year).
              We talk high, we are being run by exporting women. CHeeya.
              But the truth.
              Edwin has been made servile to Arabs for 3 decades but what he has done to improve the situation ? His comments are so dusty- and soudn as if he s been seeking recognition going after Prof. David…. DONT let this forum become an another slaugher house .. in the day sto come. We enjoyed EDWIN free CT all these months.

              • 1
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                Daruni please purchase a sense of humour as you seem to lack one entirely. I myself welcome Edwin’s return. CT has been a bleak battleground for Tamils, Sinhalese and Muslims to vent their hatred freely without him. Anyone would think the war was still raging.

                • 2
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                  I am under too much of work.

                  Sorry, if mine sounded as if I dont have humour… :(

                • 1
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                  Okay, I will keep my ends tight.

                  Good louck with Edwin. We wish you both a NICE honeymoon.

                  No more war pals. There exist only one struggle for politcs in home country.

                  I dont think anyone from SL woudl EVER want an another war to come.

                  We all want peace, we are all the same. Except some EXTREMISTS..

                  Like in Germany, those extremists would NOT have any ground, if peace lovers would make strong walls.

            • 1
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              Hello, Taraki. Thanks for coming back to CT. We missed you badly.

              You are asking me a question that I can only answer by inference. Not having seen, sensed or touched the said two spherical objects, I cannot be sure. But judging by the way this person gets upset when anything critical is said about Tiger Terrorists, the only conclusion that one can come to is that this person is as ball-less as my housekeeper Silvestra. Only a ball-less person can be so scared of even the devil. What a shame! What a disgrace!

              This person seems to be dead scared of them and under orders from them to write crap like “I think all the drug traffickers, contract killers have been former ARMY deserters majorly”. He is blaming all the crime that is taking place in SL on the Army and the Army deserters. No Sinhalese in his/her right mind would do a thing like that. I am surprised that the SL Army is not blamed for the Vidya rape and murder too.

              There are several possibilities. (1) he is a ball-less person scared of Tiger terrorists. (2) despite his Sinhalese sounding name, he is a Tamil Terrorist (3) He is a Sinhalese who living in asylum in the West under bogus pretenses.

              Take your choice.

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              This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

          • 1
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            Edwin, dont let me use bad words to attack you – septagenarian. Why shoudl we attack Tigers ro former facists JVPrs here.
            We all know that TIGERS were on terror acts. But to be honest, the manner Rajapakshes painted the picture was in favour their future goals only.
            Even today, Edwin or the like me would go on licking the balls of Rajapakshes to keep them close to them for any possible come back.
            Lanken systems have been made so stinky as nothing good can help them.
            Lanken current day politics are somewhat better, but themnot being able to hang them by their balls is the pain of those who foiught to get rid of them.
            If weapons are there still with notherners or sourtherners, rulers are made responsible not to have collected them after the war is no longer there. So work the devleoped folks.
            Just hang on talking and talking but not doing enough to anyone that go amok is no right.
            Edwin – please try to become little decent. I have balls .. that is why I express my views not being part of anyone.
            Taraki s balls should be tied on yours that may the reason you both to share the kind fo thoughts. Good luck.
            Dont let me call you an idiot again, so as a senior man, try to behave yourself. Thank you.
            Today from Cambridge/UK.

            • 1
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              Sorry man. It is simple humour. Please do not take things so hard. I do not mind being abused by CT commentators as long as CT gives me the freedom to reply in similar terms.

              You stop blaming the army deserters for every thing bad happening in SL and I will stop referring to the size of those lovely and wonderful spherical objects, without which, we men would be nothing.

              To be honest, you are the one who brought in the reference that you hate now by saying things like “Those high men in Pradheshiiya saba or other councils should be hung by their balls to liberate the nation let alone today”. I cannot fully comprehend why you are blaming the Pradesheeya Sabhas, who have no constitutional right to decide on judicial matters.

              Let us have a meaningful discussion with some humour and a little bit of venom. Let CT decide how much humour and how much venom.

              • 0
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                I think you intentionally support them the idiots. I have read x numbers of articles in lanken tabloid or some Radio senders keep reporting the bad behaviours of those Prasdesheeiya saba men. Most of them have links with police and higher politicians to do their lunatics.
                Like for example that Kahawatta serie killing occured that way.
                Please read them before attacking me this way.
                I am more into human way of life. I respect deceny more than any kind of thuggish nature. Go to Habaraduwa or Unawatuna or Matara area. Most of them the thugs down there are believed to be army deserters. They just seek the impujnity abusing the name of the great honour that the army won after defeating terror acts of LTTErs.
                Most of them the army deserters are the ones who have been running networking in lanken soil today. Those drug traffickers and others are linked to them. Please Edwin, you cant know all these, But I am well aware of all these even if I live in EUROPE:

                Just dont abuse your webspace here, please some valauble thoughts. I know some families known to me, their sons have been caught by Drugs today. Those mothers have lost their normal lives just because they have no way to save their children.
                All these because former men just ignorned drug trafficking.

                TO BE CONTINUED.

                • 0
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                  Punchiburampi, “I think you intentionally support them the idiots”. I don’t even know any of these Pradesheeya Sabha guys, leave alone support them. The money spent on these Sabhas and their members is a huge waste of public money, which can be better spent for the betterment of the Putujjana. The question is, do they have any constitutional rights to decide on judicial matters. I think not.

                  I am not ‘attacking’ you. I am just expressing an opinion that is different from yours. But disagreement is not an attack. To quote Gavin Newsom (American politician) Good people can disagree. So can friends.

                  The enemies cannot destroy the king who has at his service the respect and friendship of the wise men who can find fault, disagree, and correct him. (Thiruvalluvar, Tamil poet and author of Thirukkal)

                  It is wrong to attack the army deserters and blame them for every crime. There can be many reasons why someone deserts the army. (1) he is scared of dying (2) He is sick of the killing (3) he has criminal intent.

                  In the 2016 award winning movie ‘Hacksaw Ridge’ (a true story), the hero, a Private of the US Army, refuses to even touch a weapon but saves so many lives, both American and Japanese. Perhaps one day someone will make a similar movie on Rtd Lieutenant Shamal, our fellow commentator. All his fury is just pretense. He is a sweet guy and would not hurt even a dengue mosquito.

                  • 0
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                    I bet you if you would do some more studies on Army deserters and their hidden agendas of the current context in the country, you would have to agree with me Mr you as a graduate person.

                    I know it is no easy to accept it. But I have studied it closely. Today there are contract killers almost every corner in the country. If any word would have been against some people. that has been a simple reason to take his or her life. Most living on the MIDDLE east countries have been targeted for ransom issues.

                    Please you as one who spend more time with lankens should know all these. Beside, you as one who in his 70ties would not see the same manner as the naive people would do.

                    Army deserters have been the top of the lists that spearhead the lanken extra judicial killings. Let me add you some links next days. I will have to disppear myself in next days since I am under pressure with my work.

                    I have an another life too. But i sacrifice my time too fo rthe sake of poor folks and get them free from CRIMES in the country.

                  • 0
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                    You are not a japanese or chinese right. please widen your eyes please. and have a borader view on lanken matters.

                    There a radio sender that seems to be doing a greater service to the country.

                    This is called balumgala. please listen to it once in while can help you guys .

                    They have exposed a lot about criminals in the society. The rates are on a rise in the countr as no times in the past.

                    So please dont stand against we just want to expose lot more about criminals.

                    Thank you.

                  • 0
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                    I have the feeling Edwin has learnt a lot from his past.

                    I really like his comments these days. We thank the people who made him somewhat normal to date.

                    http://www.sundaytimes.lk/110717/News/nws_12.html

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kotakethana_murders

                    http://newsfirst.lk/english/tag/kahawatte

                    I believe Edwin or others would become more aware if they would focus on this issues even more sensitively.

                    • 0
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                      Adaptation and Change: Yes I have changed my comment style and content. Thanks to you all for showing me the correct way to comment.

                      We cannot change the environment. All we can do is to adapt to the changes in it. Buddha said, all Sanskara Dharmas (Conditional Formations, material as well as mental) are subject to Anicca. In Pali he put it as Anicca Vata Sankhara)

                      Putting it in another way, if there is anything that is common to material and mental formations, it is that they keep changing. As Heraclitus, the Greek philosopher put it so nicely, thousand of years after Buddha, There is nothing that does not change except change itself.

                      So, what can one do in this ever-changing world? The answer can be found in the following sayings:

                      I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination. (Jimmy Dean)

                      If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, Adapt. (Maya Angelou).

                      That is what I have done – Adapt.

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      Similarly the 1958 and the subsequent pogroms directed against the Tamil minorities would not have occurred if they had guns and there would have been no need for an LTTE nor any constitutional changes in 1972& 1978 or MARa’s creation in 2005.

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        I wish that it was that simple. There is a saying: “Those bear weapons will perish because of the weapons.

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    Even as the gun-control debate rises again in the U.S.
    The gun-loving Swiss are not about to lay down their arms. Guns are ubiquitous in this neutral nation, with sharpshooting considered a fun and wholesome recreational activity for people of all ages.
    http://world.time.com/2012/12/20/the-swiss-difference-a-gun-culture-that-works/

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    Kumar David,

    >Progressive Democrats such as Nancy Polanski

    Who is Nancy Polanski, a relative of Roman Polanski (look him up).

    >freedom of speech and faith and effectively makes the US a secular state;
    >splendid provisions. (Backward Lankans demand religious bigotry and
    >racial bias in the constitution).

    Give me one example of a US President who did not
    a) invoke God in the right to go to war,
    b) go to Church on a regular basis

    Whereas in SL we have had Anglican and Buddhist Prime Ministers and Presidents.

    Next: How many CongressPersons or Senators who are not Christian/Jewish (i.e. Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist).

    I dont know of any., quite a few South Asians like Nikki Haley, but they profess Christianity.

    >Nevertheless though thousands of whites join civil rights campaigns
    >and oppose anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim bias,

    Thousands (from North East and other liberal areas) might join anti-semitic bias.
    Not that many for anti-muslim bias.

    The flyover country (look it up) is strongly anti-muslim and Immigration. Thats why Trump won (as I predicted).

    Anyway many white liberals were for invading Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya,. Hillary Clinton, Samantha Powers being the prime example with their R2P..

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    There is a saying that is rather simple but sort of addresses another problem.

    “IF you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns”.

    Mr. David has presented a shallow silly argument without ever experiencing the culture in the USA outside Liberal Ivory towers.

    Yes there are schools of thoughts about closing the loopholes in Gunshows where there was no waiting period to buy a gun.

    The shooter in Vegas bought all his guns legally, and even the Bump stocks which convert Semi-Automatic weapons to Automatics were legal.

    Mr. David doesn’t t know that civilians CANNOT by law buy fully Automatic weapons legally. Joe and Jane cannot buy an AK-47 fully automatic combat rifle legally. But Laws prevent ATF which overseas weapons, to ban Bump stocks because they are considered “parts of guns and not guns”. Mr. David should pay attention to all sides. I got ride of my guns because I became too old and did not go to shooting ranges and did not trust my own emotions too much. But even before I became an American citizen, I could have legally purchased a handgun. There are certain issues like conceal-carry on Campuses that are absurd and a bit scary. But NO ONE could have stopped that killer who was firing from higher ground even if the victims had guns.

    Yes NRA is the most powerful lobby in the USA and have so many Republicans in their pocket. But Chicago has strict gun laws but why don’t you talk about the daily shootings in the Black neighborhoods where innocents die in crossfire almost daily? They have very strict gunlaws but the DRUG GANGSTERS have all the weapons they desire including Fully Automatic combat weapons. THINK before you present one-sided arguments. Chicago had 4,368 shooting victims in 2016. It dropped quite a bit this year.

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-chicago-violence-first-six-months-met-20170630-story.html

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    Your elite tone really comes out with your Hillary like arrogance here. You are as cluelessly arrogant as Hillary and other liberal loony toons we see everyday here in Florida. If someone breaks into your house and points a gun and threatens to rape your loved ones, will you bend over and say take my butt as well please and sing Kumbaya or if you are trained and know how to use a Glock 9mm and you have it with you will you not try to protect them by shooting the perpetrators? We are Americans. We decide our constitution, not foreigners.

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      Oh really? With a history and culture going back only a couple centuries, what makes you think that you can do a proper job? Not that I care what happens to your uncultured country, which is right now feeling the wrath of God. Water, fire, what next? Pestilence? The problem is that you interfere in the more cultured countries like ours. That is my worry.

      If not for that, I would say GRoBR.

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      Scott Wittstruck: You are used to gun culture. that is all what you know. It is not possible to break off from that until you live in a peaceful lcountry where 10% or more of the poulation is not mental patients.

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      Hi Wiitstruck,

      For a Sri Lankan expatriate pretending to be a white American, you do come up with interesting German names for yourself, like Wolfgang, Adam, etc., but you forgot to change your email so the Gravatar follows you everywhere. Unlike Trump, some of us do have decent memories,.

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    There is NO NANCY POLANSKI. You need to check names before you drop them. You are referring to Hollywood rapist pig Harvey Weinstein backed Liberal loser from San Francisco.

    She is like RW refusing to give up control of the Democratic Congressional caucus even after suffering defeat after defeat after defeat.

    HER NAME IS NANCY PELOSI and she wears 12,000 Armani Suits like you liberal rich dudes do. I cannot afford an Armani. But still speaks like she is a working class stiff in Ohio or Pennsylvania or Michigan. She cannot relate not empathize with them.

    Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is worth $26.4 million She is the minority leader.Paul holds a stake in the United Football League and has investments in a wide array of companies.

    Apey Aragalaya fake socialist rubbish solution they put out always include taxes and more taxes than spending cuts. Hope she sends you are nice Armani suit soon.As a retired Uni instructor I will be lucky to spend $250 on a suit at Walmart! Cheers Oh great Liberal socialist mind.

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    Nancy Polanski Aunty Pelosi is one of the top 15 RICHEST Congressmen/women in the US

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    America was created by white settlers by Guns and destroyed an ancient settlers in that land. They will not repeal the second amendment to the constitution. the Republicans are against Gun control and even the famous actor Charlton Heston was against it.

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      Charles HEston was the chariman of the National Rifle Association which is the association for weapon producers.. Weapons producing companies got him there because he was famous.

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    “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed” ~ Second Amendment of the US Constitution
    Is it not implied that the arms shall be used by a ‘well regulated militia’ to protect the security of a free state?
    Kumar David ~ “Repeal second amendment”.
    Come off this pontification – Obama tried.

    Kumar David tries to impress us claiming that he visits US, Las Vegas at that and Luxor Hotel to boot. Do you prove that you are not Muslim every time? Usual method?
    Kumar beefs up the article with lackadaisical mention of Rohingyas. The Muslims in Myanmar are comprised of several ethnic groups. Rohingyas are the poorest and the Burmese Junta have extended persecution to genocide.
    Kumar muses ~ “Burma is in transition from military rule to democracy with power still split between the two….”.
    The Burmese Junta never ever gave up the control of the Burmese army and police. By the way Kumar, ho is in control of the Lankan army and police?
    To cut a long story short. Kumar do not USE Rohingyas to fill pages.
    Kumar touches the Lankan issue with ~ ” To my knowledge few Tamils took a stand against LTTE terrorism against civilians………….”.
    This is the HLD M – Hoole touch. Read about liberation movements Kumar.

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    I am no fan of America. But I cannot help feeling sorry for the country despite all its weapons ranging from toy pistols to weapons of mass destruction. This so called ‘great’ country is being made to dance the jingo by a small country such as North Korea. Right now North Korea is calling the shots and America is just jumping up and down not knowing what to do. America draws a line and says, OK don’t cross that line ‘or else…’ and the very next day North Korea crosses it. The ‘or else..’ is never implemented. instead America draws a new line and repeats the same threat and the rocket-man simply repeats his actions. And so on the game goes.

    What a sorry state America has fallen to! They should now realize that there is nothing they can do about North Korea. So they should shut their mouths for a change and have a good think about it. It is as if the Chandiya of the area has been confronted by a little catapult wielding boy and the Chandiya is backing away.

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    Yes the wording has been parsed many times over on the 2nd Amendment. It is perplexing. But we cannot repeal it. Some commonsense approaches will have to be adapted. NRA is very powerful and also the gun manufacturers are really powerful too. His analysis was one-sided.

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    I need to add that, an AR-15 is NOT an automatic rifle. It is semi-automatic. For defensive purposes one can carry a concealed handgun. You need a concealed carry permit and some training. For home defense you can use an AR-15 and for last line of defense a double-barreled shotgun. The shotgun has the highest stopping power or simply put will put a big hole in your attacker. All these are perfectly legal in the US an have valid reasons for usage. Fully automatic weapons like AK-47/T-56, M4/M16 are TOTALLY ILLEGAL! And even attempting to modify a semi-automatic to behave like an automatic is also ILLEGAL. Just look at the amount of gun crimes in the US and cross-check how many have been carried by ILLEGALLY acquired arms. Law abiding gun owners in the US rarely commit such crimes.

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      This is a good point. Under stricter gun laws, law abiding citizens would find it almost impossible to acquire guns legally. Any criminal can get not only powerful and sophisticated guns but even grenades, RPG’s etc. When seen that way, strict gun laws can only make things worse.

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      Indeed. Yes he should have examined facts. Also remember the ATF scandal which led to guns going to Mexican Drug gangs? The “Fast and Furious” operation that was supposed to track weapons and drugs? Big disaster for Obama regime but liberals kept quiet.. AR-15 is legal because it is a semi-automatic. AK-47s are not and neither are Uzis(a favorite weapon of drug gangs). Some commonsense measures are needed but not a repeal.

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    “Central America’s de facto failed states Columbia, El Salvador, Honduras, Venezuela…” -AKD
    I do not know what is the criterion for ‘passing’ in AKD’s book.
    Has not the US had a role in the so-called failure of each of the four listed by him?
    Who is behind the violence and anarchy and hampering the rule of law?
    *
    BTW, Is Mexico an un-failed state?
    Or for that matter, the US in many ways?
    It may be worth AKD’s consulting Noam Chomsky on the subject.
    **
    “…anti-Muslim bigotry is as pervasive in Burma as it is in Lanka.”
    Myanmar has a long history of xenophobia. Indians were expelled in droves since after WW2. Chinese were targetted, but no violence or expulsion. The national question is more complex than in Sri Lanka. There is military solution possible.
    The Rohingya situation combines features of our disenfranchisement legislation of 1947 and the post-Sihala Urumaya era acts against Muslims.

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    “True, Suu Kyi is no Gandhi or Mandela in moral stature…” That takes the cake for understatement.
    *
    “But with a few exceptions Sinhalese Buddhists and Catholics/Christians did not lift a finger”
    Will the Reverend Father who strongly objected several weeks ago to my Catholics/Christians distinction some time ago raise his objection here too?
    *
    “Except Central America’s de facto failed states Columbia, El Salvador, Honduras, Venezuela and a few others, the US has the world’s highest firearm related homicide rate.”
    What are AKD’ds criteria for “passing” a state?
    Will he not comment on the role of the US on the so-called failure of law and order in each of the four states.
    Will he agree with Chomsky that the USA is a seriously failed state?

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    Professor

    Most people are fed up with all the well-rehearsed arguments that get us nowhere. The truth is that most Republicans and some Democrats approach the second amendment as if it is a loaded weapon. The overwhelming red-necked American male lives with small testicles and big guns.

    The second amendment to the American politician is what the Buddhism clause is to the Sri Lankan politician.

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