Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Oh, Dear Guinevere....

 (my lawyer, a very tough guy)

Well, I am in another duel to the dense on Facebook. A "friend" has offered to sue me again. Apparently he does not like our disagreements very much. He has criticized my education as well as questioning my ability to pay for further education, suggesting scholarships, etc. So, I have returned the sentiments in kind, mocking his religion as well as his Constitutional dogma.  Well, in fairness, I might have been mocking his religion for some time, though not always directly towards him.

His lawsuit threats stem from a quotation of his that I used, crediting him, then removed at his request. He is having a difficult time letting that go. I would too, I guess, if I made claims that were so absurd and didn't want the public at large to know that I harbored such patently idiotic sentiments, to say nothing of the sheer vulgarity of his mind.... Well, I guess it's too late for me, but he's still holding on to a chance. It is part of his religious nature, I suppose.

The thing that is most odd to me about it is that he continues to threaten me with a lawsuit. He posts controversial posts, seemingly inviting conversation/discourse/argument, then threatens to sue me for thinking enough of his post to quote him elsewhere. The fact that I removed the quotation upon request isn't even the issue any more. It is a person trying to flex a power. If he does sue me I'll be very curious to see what for - disagreeing on Facebook, taking his quote down as he asked me to, mentioning that if he sends me an email then I reserve the right to quote that publicly in the future. He'll have quite a case against me. Maybe he'll have me extradited to a state that celebrates the death penalty.

 A more detailed account of our initial interaction can be found here.

To give you an idea of recent happenings, here are the last three posts of mine, with quotations removed (pending approval):

Oh, you are still struggling with understanding the words you read, or write. As far as you assuming that I am "uniformed"... well, I don't hardly believe that you even know what you mean with that sort of statement. To answer your question: No... you have not made yourself clear, at all. It is a matter of syntax, confusion, and a possible misspelling, in addition to a possible lifetime of misreadings. But I am too tired to respond in full tonight. If it's okay with your lawyers I will have a statement prepared in the morning. I pray for your humbling grace in this and all future matters.

Oops, I responded without even reading your last paragraph. I got bored. I hope that private legal threats differentiate themselves from public ones.   Because you just threatened me with legal action upon "escalation", and odd premise considering the participatory nature of your comments. I'm not sure how or why you could possible deem to do such a thing, but I'm sure your esteemed counsel will let me know. I'll respond in full in the morning. Set your counsel on "stun"...

And here is the morning's response:


I can understand why you wouldn't want your words used outside of their private context here: damage control. You wouldn't want yourself to appear ill-informed on an even larger scale. The article that you posted by your esteemed expert suggests that the reasoning behind, and purpose for, the 2nd amendment was for the eventual overthrow of the American government. Little matter that they took the time to explain the purpose of a militia within the document itself. One that you have largely ignored, preferring instead to focus on what was said by individuals outside the document, in private letters, public debate and the occasional "tavern-talk." It's your choice to do so, but you must eventually feel silly, though there seems to be little silliness on your current legal horizon.

The Constitution is the law, _____. Nothing in it suggests the overthrowing of the government created therein. That is an extemporaneous meaning that you and others like you have adopted. Voting is the primary power created to resist tyranny. Freedom from religion and the freedom of speech would be next. You ignore the very structure of the document that you pretend to admire. I'll get to that later.

Here is an exact quote from the article you posted: "(This quotation has been removed, pending approval.)"

"(This quotation has been removed, pending approval.)"

No definition of the word "train" makes sense in this statement, but who am I to question? As you pointed out, he is your educational hero. Let's ignore for now the fact that he writes much like he thinks, lazily and prone to unfounded assumptions. Where is this DUTY listed? (The author had suggested that it is a duty to overthrow the government, the 2nd amendment being the provision for it.)

Again, I will ask you where this suppositional purpose is listed in The Constitution? The founding fathers make a specific definition of the use of a militia, which I have included in a post above. These are the very words of The Constitution. The 2nd amendment clearly cites the need for a well regulated militia. There is nothing in The Constitution that qualifies that need to bear arms as being a necessary component of overthrowing the very government that they were establishing. It does, however, give citizens the right to bear arms, a right which I support. But to claim that that right is there for the purpose of overthrowing the democracy created is a stretch by any standards. A compiling of random out-of-context quotes by the founding fathers doesn't negate the law that they put into place, or perhaps it does only in your vigilantly arranged mind.

You claim that my Abraham Lincoln quotation is "out of context" even though it clearly addresses the very point that I am making, one that disagrees with yours. That he would have insight into the preservation of the country, arguing against your paranoid preparation for the dissolution of it, is extremely telling. That you miss this meaning is also unsurprising and typical of your reading behavior in general.

I offered to let you apologize for your egregious misreading to me publicly, or in a private email, which I let you know in advance would become my property by virtue of you sending it to me. Your response was unsurprisingly hostile, threatening litigation again, yet without the requested apology being sent, publicly or privately. You then go on to state, "(This quotation has been removed, pending approval.)" Again, you lack an ability to read or understand what I wrote. When it comes to "respecting a friendship" I did so by removing the quote. You have responded by continued legal threats. Your friendship means less and less to me as you have proven unworthy of the term. You seem much more interested in flexing an imaginary power, one that is designed to stifle free and open speech.

That you can not speak without a lawyer, or the threat of litigation, is charming and must come in quite handy in your line of work. I am left to make my own assumptions about the various dealings with which you undertake in this proscribed manner. But threats of legal action do not scare me at all, especially when they are so baseless as to arise from a Facebook conversation/argument. I don't mind that you lack the courage to stand behind your own thoughts and statements and resort to the threat of litigation to intimidate people.

I have a very difficult time believing that Christ would act this way, but perhaps you are not one of those christians that believes much in acting very christ-like. If you ever do develop an interest in standing behind the statements you make, proud to have them discussed elsewhere, willing to support the flimsy ideas contained therein, then let me know. I would love to have a public debate with you, where your threats of legal action need not be used. The impotence of your statements will be forced to bolster themselves, without the aid of a lawyer.

That being said, Being the believer in the 2nd amendment that you claim to be I am somewhat shocked at your apparent lack of awareness of the 1st amendment. I can understand why you might avoid it, as it does make very clear a freedom from religion. Though there is a  much more important attribute of the amendment. The "abridged" version is that Congress shall make no law prohibiting free speech. You seem to understand, in a rather blunt way, the implication of such a right. But you seem incapable of understanding how that right might extend to others. To help you understand: I am able to relay my life experiences and I don't need your permission to do so, nor will I ever. Quoting you in the way that I have was a courtesy, though one that you fail to understand. I have respected your wishes by removing the quote. There is plenty of documentation reflecting this. That you are incapable of acknowledging and supporting your own thoughts and beliefs publicly is both humorous and frightening. It must be trying to live the life that you do, so often in secrecy, being a merchant and money-changer in an imaginary temple. We must assume that your Father is quite proud.

If that seems like a slight on your honorable profession then I apologize, openly and publicly, for all to see. I just don't think that your uber-aggressive legal scare tactics are even up to your own standards, if they can even be called that.

I have called you to speak personally, you have neglected to return my call.  Instead, you chose to threaten me yet again. You have the opportunity to return my call and speak freely, or you can continue to make legal threats because somebody thought enough of your semi-coherent mumblings to repeat them.

"(This quotation has been removed, pending approval.)" - _____ _______...

Make yourself clearer, and stand up for the very words that you profess to believe. I had quoted you, that quote has been removed at your request. I represented your exact words, to make a point and refute your assertions. This is all evidenced by digital technology. When you asked that I take the words down, I complied. I generally enjoy engaging in conversation with you, though this has become an open argument, with continued threats of legal action. I have offered to speak with you privately, but you have not returned my call. Now, I challenge you again to a public debate. Let me know if you accept and we'll determine the terms. I realize that letting go of the threat of legal entanglement will be a difficult one for you,

Do I make myself clear?

End of Facebook post. The last line is an echo of his, for those who were wondering at my new found assertiveness...

This is how I waste my aging days.

You see, my friend has somewhat vaguely claimed that the 2nd amendment is there to allow for overthrowing what he perceives to be a tyrannical government (ie. Treason). Though he has been very reluctant to actually answer the question when it is put to him, for obvious legal reasons. He envisions himself as a defender of the one true patriotic spirit, the one that might be allowed to kill or shoot those who he perceives to be tyrants, engaged in tyranny. If not shoot, then sue, but silence at any cost.

Freedom is the byproduct of orderly democratic governance and the rule of law, not the bozo-brigade armed to the teeth and mumbling about overthrowing the government, if need be, when the time is right. The 2nd amendment, by his presumed reckoning, is like a built-in doomsday device that allows for armed treason against the United States. Like: when voting doesn't work, as he recently must have felt, and witnessed, in the last general election...

The most surprising aspect of all of this, to me, is that neither of us has deleted the other from our "friends" list. Certainly that would have solved all of our problems, right? We both must enjoy it, to some degree. I know I do, in a way, but it is certainly uncomfortable to argue this way with a friend. I had hoped a phone call would help lessen the escalation. Silly me.

Ah, well... I have tried and tried to create a shared rationale with him. Who knows, maybe his lawyers will be a much more reasonable group of fellows.