Wednesday, March 15, 2006

'Stick' to your guns

An Englishman’s* home is his Castle. I, like any other law-abiding citizen of the UK, still believe that my home is my Castle. It may be a lot smaller than Camelot [And thankfully a great deal less draughty], but I still see my home as a place of sanctuary. It is somewhere I can shut the world away, especially work, draw the curtains and settle down to a good read or time with my family.

Despite all that occurs around us daily, the teenage drinkers, the lads kicking ball, the speeding cars, the arseholes I work with, I live in a space that offers protection all those invited guests who enter via the front door.

I have often wondered to what extent, or extreme, I would go to protect this wonderful peaceful environment I call home.

I posses, as do no doubt countless other homeowners, what I would consider to be a harmless implement that could be easily used as a weapon to protect my family in times of crisis. For the want of a better word, and not wanting to divulge its true identity, I shall call this object my big ‘Stick’.

In my twenty-six years as a house owner I have never had an occasion for the use of the ‘Stick’.

Since the 1950s, the decade to which I was born, the UK has had access to Nuclear weapons, which it too has thankfully never had to use. It has been sixty-odd years since a nuclear bomb was deployed in earnest.

The British Government, past, present or future, have been pretty good at wielding a large stick when they feel the need, be it military or politically. Yet even today they are willing to consider finding a replacement for our current outdated nuclear ‘deterrent’. The UK has never been as good as we think we are at leading by example, so to proliferate WMD by replacing Trident is nonsensical. If nothing else just think of the uses that the monies involved could be put to: Schools, Hospitals, etc.

Saddam Hussein wanted nuclear weapons because it neighbour is Iran; Iran want them because they had Iraq as neighbours, and now they just appear unstable to us in the West; Israel have the capability because it is OK with the Americans and they have the whole of the Middle East viewing them; the US have them because they can; and we in the UK have them because no one has told us we cannot, and it makes us feel more important than we really are.

Only a minority of countries have the nuclear capability, but the minority is still too large, if we all got rid of them then no country would have a claim to needing them.

How has their presence helped the US in its fight against Terror? And how did they help prevent the atrocities of 9/11?

The worrying thing is, that I may be forced to use the ‘Stick’ one day, but what is even scarier than that is this question - ‘Would I pull the trigger on a Gun to protect my home if I had one?’
The answer to that will never be tested: I cannot use what I haven’t got.

In the meantime ‘Stick’ shall continue to be used for the peaceful purpose it was intended.

It is one thing to have a big stick to wield; it is another to have one that may go off with a large bang.

Guardian Unlimited - Q&A: replacing Trident

* for Englishman's insert Scottish; Irish; Welsh; Cornish

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Just for laughs - no one really dies in a cartoon

Are we losing the ability to laugh, or is the immediacy of the internet just highlighting yet another human frailty?

Get over it, it's just another cartoon. If you don't like it turn the switch to 'Off' - simple.

Isaac Hayes leaving South Park on religious ground - Ha!

Catholics urge South Park boycott

If I had known it was this contentious I may have watched it before now.