Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Michelle Obama's portrait is so popular that the Smithsonian had to move it to handle the crowds.

Courtesy of The Root: 

Who wouldn’t want to go see the real first lady Michelle Obama, even if that meant “settling” for an amazing, intricate portrait rather than the real deal? 

As it turns out, everyone was just waiting to see the unique portrait Baltimore artist Amy Sherald painted of the former FLOTUS after it was unveiled at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery last month. 

So much so that the museum was forced to relocate the portrait because of the demand.

I am not so sure that it is the painting itself which draws so much attention, or that it represents one of the greatest First Ladies who has ever graced the White House.

We were so lucky to have them both.

BTW this is the massage that the Obamas sent to those Parkland students.
Even out of office they are still supporting Americans and their quest to end gun violence.

Donald Trump defends his congratulatory phone call to Putin, while also attacking his predecessors.

Once again President Obama's call to Putin was at a time BEFORE Russia had interfered in our election, hacked both the RNC and DNC computers, weaponized Facebook, undermined our power grid, and started openly killing people on British soil.

If Obama were the President right now there is NO DOUBT that he would be doing far more than simply excoriating Vladimir Putin.

So why isn't Trump?

Former CIA chief John Brennan has a pretty good idea.
Courtesy of CNN:

The former director of the CIA suggested Wednesday that President Donald Trump is withholding criticism of Russian President Vladimir Putin because the Russians might have compromising personal information on Trump. 

"I think he is afraid of the President of Russia," John Brennan said of Trump in an interview on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." 

Asked why, Brennan said, "The Russians could have something on him personally that they could always roll out and make his life more difficult."


You should see how the conservatives on Twitter are freaking out over this statement.

I guess it's true what they say, the truth hurts.

Cable news analyst quits and sends final message to his Fox News peers.

Courtesy of Buzzfeed: 

On March 1st, I informed Fox that I would not renew my contract. The purpose of this message to all of you is twofold: 

First, I must thank each of you for the cooperation and support you've shown me over the years. Those working off-camera, the bookers and producers, don't often get the recognition you deserve, but I want you to know that I have always appreciated the challenges you face and the skill with which you master them.

Second, I feel compelled to explain why I have to leave. Four decades ago, I took an oath as a newly commissioned officer. I swore to "support and defend the Constitution," and that oath did not expire when I took off my uniform. Today, I feel that Fox News is assaulting our constitutional order and the rule of law, while fostering corrosive and unjustified paranoia among viewers. Over my decade with Fox, I long was proud of the association. Now I am ashamed. 

In my view, Fox has degenerated from providing a legitimate and much-needed outlet for conservative voices to a mere propaganda machine for a destructive and ethically ruinous administration. When prime-time hosts--who have never served our country in any capacity--dismiss facts and empirical reality to launch profoundly dishonest assaults on the FBI, the Justice Department, the courts, the intelligence community (in which I served) and, not least, a model public servant and genuine war hero such as Robert Mueller--all the while scaremongering with lurid warnings of "deep-state" machinations-- I cannot be part of the same organization, even at a remove. To me, Fox News is now wittingly harming our system of government for profit. 

As a Russia analyst for many years, it also has appalled me that hosts who made their reputations as super-patriots and who, justifiably, savaged President Obama for his duplicitous folly with Putin, now advance Putin's agenda by making light of Russian penetration of our elections and the Trump campaign. Despite increasingly pathetic denials, it turns out that the "nothing-burger" has been covered with Russian dressing all along. And by the way: As an intelligence professional, I can tell you that the Steele dossier rings true--that's how the Russians do things.. The result is that we have an American president who is terrified of his counterpart in Moscow. 

I do not apply the above criticisms in full to Fox Business, where numerous hosts retain a respect for facts and maintain a measure of integrity (nor is every host at Fox News a propaganda mouthpiece--some have shown courage). I have enjoyed and valued my relationship with Fox Business, and I will miss a number of hosts and staff members. You're the grown-ups. 

Also, I deeply respect the hard-news reporters at Fox, who continue to do their best as talented professionals in a poisoned environment. These are some of the best men and women in the business.. 

So, to all of you: Thanks, and, as our president's favorite world leader would say, "Das vidanya."

Okay that last remark was right on target.

The above is a message from now retired Lt. Colonel Ralph Peters, and former Fox News "expert."

There has been virtually no time in the past where I have found anything admirable about this guy, but apparently there is an ethical line that even HE will not cross.

Now let's watch and see if any other Fox News folks reach there limit in the next few months. 

So there is no doubt that Donald Trump is now doing his own tweeting.

This was the tweet that Trump sent out this morning. Yep, such a genius.

Later somebody tried to fix it for him.

As you can see (Counsel.) with limited success.

His second mistake was in thinking that a legal opinion by Fox News crony Alan Dershowitz was going to have any impact on whether Robert Mueller takes his ass down or not.

Just goes to show how far you can fall when you don't have Hope. (Hicks that is.)

So it appears that the Austin bombing suspect went out with a bang.

Courtesy of CNN: 

A suspect in a wave of bombings that terrorized Austin killed himself with an explosion inside his car as authorities closed in, police in Texas said, ending a manhunt but leaving investigators scrambling to determine whether any bombs remain and if he acted alone.

The 24-year-old man detonated the bomb early Wednesday on the side of Interstate 35 in Round Rock, north of Austin, as SWAT team members approached him, police said. 

Investigators believe he is responsible for the five explosions that killed two people and injured five others in Austin or south-central Texas since March 2, authorities said. They also warned a wary public not to let down their guard. 

"We don't know where this suspect has spent his last 24 hours, and therefore we still need to remain vigilant to ensure that no other packages or devices have been left throughout the community," Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said.

This was a 24 year old white guy who seemed to be targeting minorities.

And yet when asked about this Sarah Huckabee Sanders refused to identify the bombings as an act of terrorism, and Trump did not bother to mention them until the bomber was dead.
I guess if the suspect is not a brown skinned or a Muslim, he does not qualify as a terrorist, nor do his attacks offer Trump the opportunity to call for a travel ban or a higher wall on the border of Mexico.

By the way Trump is right that the FBI did a great job on this case, and hopefully there is another investigation in which they will have equal success.

So it appears that Don Jr. was also sleeping around on his wife just like dear old dad.

Courtesy of Page Six: 

Years before Vanessa Trump filed for divorce from Donald Trump Jr., their marriage was rocked when — around the time she was pregnant with their third child — he cheated on her with a contestant from “The Celebrity Apprentice.” 

Page Six has exclusively learned that Don Jr. — then a so-called “adviser” on the NBC show — fell for busty Danity Kane star Aubrey O’Day while filming “Celebrity Apprentice” in 2011. 

Sources say that Vanessa — who filed for divorce from President Donald Trump’s eldest son last week after 13 years of marriage — was devastated when he told her that he planned to leave her for O’Day. 

Vanessa was pregnant with their third child, Tristan, around that time. 

Don Jr. “pursued [Aubrey]. It was him who chased her,” said a source familiar with the situation. “He told her that his marriage was already in the process of dissolving.”

Oh yeah, their marriage is always "in the process of dissolving" ladies, that is the answer that every philanderer gives when he is trying to bump uglies with some other woman.

Of course his marriage lasted another seven years and two more kids before his wife finally had enough of his shit.

O'Day may have even written a song about the affair back in 2013.

Courtesy of TMZ:

If Aubrey O'Day had an affair with Donald Trump Jr. -- as some reports have claimed -- she barely tried to conceal it when she released a song ... about an affair, entitled "DJT." 

The 2013 tune is about as on the nose as you can get ... featuring a phone convo between Aubrey and a guy, with her asking him, "You want to believe that everything with me was a lie? A fantasy?" He replies, "I'll always want you and always wonder about it, but it doesn't matter because I have to stay here."

I'm a little confused about what remains of the conservative moral compass.

Does Junior get a few extra points for this affair because at least it WASN'T with a porn star, or is only bedding a singer considered a swing and a miss because she doesn't actually get paid to have sex?

So confusing.

According to sources the affair broke up after daddy Trump found out about it.

He probably wanted O'Day for himself I'm guessing.

P.S. It should be noted that I originally had this scheduled for yesterday, but it got bumped due to breaking stories about daddy's various extramarital liaisons.

Even when it comes to being a complete douchebag Junior has to play second fiddle to his dad.


Mississippi nine year old boy shoots sister in the head when she refuse to give up video game controller.

Courtesy of USA Today: 

A 13-year-old girl has died after authorities say she was shot Saturday by her 9-year-old brother, local media reported. 

Monroe County Sheriff Cecil Cantrell said the girl would not give up a video game controller when her brother wanted it. 

Cantrell said she was shot in the back of the head, and that the bullet went through her brain. The girl was rushed to Le Bonheur's Children's Hospital in Memphis. Cantrell said late Sunday that she died of her injuries, WLOV-TV and other media reported. 

Authorities don't yet know how the child had access to the weapon they say he used to shoot his sister. 

It's also unclear how much knowledge the boy had of the dangers of guns.

Well he knew enough to point and shoot, and that is what makes guns so fucking dangerous.

This cannot be blamed on video games, or violent television shows, this happened because somebody in these children's lives did not understand the concept of gun safety and did not put this weapon in a secure location where the children could not access it.

So once again the gun that was purchased to keep people safe, ended up taking another innocent life.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

So Donald Trump really did call to congratulate Vladimir Putin for stealing another election in Russia. Update!

OMGD! I'm so proud of you! You really put the "dick" in dictator. I wish I was there to kiss your ass in person.
Courtesy of the New York Times:

President Trump on Tuesday congratulated President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia on his recent re-election victory, but failed to ask him about either the fairness of the Russian vote, which Mr. Putin won with a lopsided margin, or about allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. 

Mr. Trump also did not raise Russia’s apparent role in a nerve agent attack on a former Russian spy and his daughter on British soil — an act that prompted the United States to join with Britain, France and Germany in denouncing the Russian government for violating international law. 

Instead, in his phone call with Mr. Putin, the president focused on what the White House called “shared interests,” including North Korea, Ukraine and the escalating arms race between the United States and Russia. He said he and Mr. Putin were likely to meet soon to discuss those issues. 

“We had a very good call,” Mr. Trump told reporters in the Oval Office, where he was meeting with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia. “We will probably be meeting in the not-too distant future to discuss the arms race, which is getting out of control.”

And why is the arms race getting out of control?

Because these two demagogues are in a dick measuring contest.

So just let this steep in your mind for a moment. This president called the man who interfered in our election, has hacked into our power grid, and is currently having people murdered on British soil, to congratulate him for oppressing his people and stealing their right to choose their own leader.

You know who never would have done that?

Hillary Clinton, that's who!

Hell even John McCain would have had the cojones to do the right thing.
Yeah, no shit!

Take a look at this completely surreal moment when Sarah Huckabee Sanders explains why Trump did not say anything to Putin about stealing this election.
Wait, what?

AMERICA does not get to dictate how elections in other countries operate?

 Well I bet Afghanistan and Iraq are glad to hear about that.

And she calls herself a Republican. 

I am so far down this rabbit now hole that I am certain I will never see the sun again.

Update: Courtesy of WaPo:  

President Trump did not follow specific warnings from his national security advisers when he congratulated Russian President Vladi­mir Putin Tuesday on his reelection, including a section in his briefing materials in all-capital letters stating “DO NOT CONGRATULATE,” according to officials familiar with the call. 

Trump also chose not to heed talking points from aides instructing him to condemn Putin about the recent poisoning of a former Russian spy in the United Kingdom with a powerful nerve agent, a case that both the British and U.S. governments have blamed on Moscow. 

The president’s conversation with Putin, which Trump called a “very good call,” prompted fresh criticism of his muted tone toward one of the United States’s biggest geopolitical rivals amid the ongoing special counsel investigation into Russia’s election interference and the Trump campaign’s contacts with Russian officials.

I don't know folks. I'm beginning to think there might be something hinky going on between Trump and Putin. 

Or am I just being paranoid?

It appears that Stormy Daniels has reinforcements.

Courtesy of  NBC News:

Adult film actress Stormy Daniels underwent a polygraph exam in 2011 about her relationship with Donald Trump, and the examiner found there was a more than 99 percent probability she told the truth when she said they had unprotected sex in 2006, according to a copy of the report obtained by NBC News Tuesday. 

Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, took the lie detector test at the request of a magazine that interviewed her in 2011, but didn’t publish the content at the time. 

The report is accompanied by a sworn declaration from the examiner, signed on Monday, March 19, 2018, attesting to the polygraph report’s authenticity. Details of the report were first published by The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday.

Now that by itself is pretty unfortunate news for a certain tangerine teapot tyrant.

However it was only the beginning of the shitty Trump news for today.

Courtesy of the New York Times:

A former Playboy model who claimed she had an affair with Donald J. Trump sued on Tuesday to be released from a 2016 legal agreement requiring her silence, becoming the second woman this month to challenge Trump allies’ efforts during the presidential campaign to bury stories about extramarital relationships.

The model, Karen McDougal, is suing the company that owns The National Enquirer, American Media Inc., which paid her $150,000 and whose chief executive is a friend of President Trump’s. The other woman, the adult entertainment star Stephanie Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels, was paid $130,000 to stay quiet by the president’s personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen. She filed suit earlier this month.

Ms. McDougal, in a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, claims that Mr. Cohen was secretly involved in her talks with A.M.I., and that the media company and her lawyer at the time misled her about the deal. She also asserts that after she spoke with The New Yorker last month after it obtained notes she kept on Mr. Trump, A.M.I. warned that “any further disclosures would breach Karen’s contract” and “cause considerable monetary damages.”

Kinda feels a little coordinated doesn't it?

Well if it is that is a damn smart play.  After all there is strength in numbers.

And speaking of numbers, they are continuing to grow.

Courtesy of Bloomberg:

President Donald Trump can’t avoid a former "Apprentice" contestant’s defamation lawsuit and may be forced to respond under oath to allegations of sexual assault and his treatment of women. 

Summer Zervos, a contender on The Apprentice in 2005, sued Trump in January 2017 alleging he “ambushed” her on more than one occasion starting in 2007, kissing her, touching her breast and pressing his genitals against her. On Tuesday, New York State Supreme Court Justice Jennifer Schecter denied the president’s request to throw out the lawsuit or delay it until he leaves office.

"No one is above the law," Schecter wrote in an 18-page decision. “Nothing in the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution even suggests that the president cannot be called to account before a state court for wrongful conduct that bears no relationship to any federal executive responsibility.” 

The ruling could subject Trump to extremely broad questions about this case and similar ones, and he might be forced to testify under oath and provide documents, said Naomi Mezey, a professor at Georgetown Law School and an expert on civil procedure.

Damn! I almost forgot about Zervos.

And if SHE can get Trump to testify under oath, that means that his other accusers might be able to do the same. 

 Remember it only took one intern, with one stained dressed, to get Bill Clinton impeached.

By the time this is over there could be over a dozen women, with a whole closet full of DNA stained clothing to bring to the courtroom.

Cambridge Analytica boss caught on camera offering to hire sex workers and offer bribes to compromise politicians.

Courtesy of Buzzfeed: 

The boss of Cambridge Analytica, the analytics firm at the centre of an international storm over the misuse of Facebook user data, has been caught on camera bragging about how the company could blackmail political candidates with sex workers, and telling a prospective client that it has been secretly operating around the world to campaign in elections. 

In an undercover operation by Britain's Channel 4 News, CEO Alexander Nix and two other high-ranking Cambridge Analytica staff took meetings with a reporter posing as a fixer who wanted the data firm's help getting candidates elected in Sri Lanka. 

On Monday evening, Channel 4 broadcast undercover footage from four meetings across three months, with Nix telling the reporter that one of the services of Cambridge Analytica could be to “send some girls around to the candidate’s house”, adding that Ukrainian girls “are very beautiful, I find that works very well”. 

Nix also told the undercover reporter: “We’ll offer a large amount of money to the candidate, to finance his campaign in exchange for land, for instance. We’ll have the whole thing recorded. We’ll blank out the face of our guy and we post it on the internet.”

Representatives of the company also offered to spread fake news about political opponents in order to help sway the elections.

Well gee, no wonder the Trump campaign wanted to work with these guys, they were singing the same tune.

This is what the whistle blower who outed the company's Facebook data mining operation said about this video 

Wiley couldn’t speak as to how this relates to the firm’s work for the Trump campaign, but he went on to say “there is a perverse company culture inside of Cambridge Analytica, and as the undercover shows, they’re willing to go to extreme lengths to service their clients, and they’ll do anything that helps, whether it’s legal or not.”

Do we really believe that the Trump campaign did not utilize that skills set?

We also learned yesterday that before they started using their possibly illegal tactics to help Donald Trump, that Cambridge Analytica worked for Ted Cruz.

Courtesy of Raw Story:  

Before they ran shady data operations for Donald Trump’s campaign, Cambridge Analytica worked for Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) during his presidential bid. Now, the Texas Republican is under fire for hiring the group amid reports that they improperly used Facebook data. 

The Dallas Morning News reported Monday that the Cruz campaign kept Cambridge Analytica on retainer six months after initial reports of the firm using illicitly-sourced Facebook data surfaced in 2015 — a fact the Texas Democratic Party touted in a news release published on Monday. 

“Ted Cruz will stop at nothing to weasel his way into power, even if it means weaponizing stolen information to manipulate people to like him,” Manny Garcia, the deputy executive director of the Texas Democratic Party, said in a press release. “Cruz’s campaign exploited personal information to create psychological profiles on millions of Americans. All to keep lining the pockets of Cruz’s billionaire super PAC donors — like Robert Mercer, who funded this propaganda machine.”

Color me unsurprised that Cruz would resort to tactics like this, nice to see that it might end up biting him in the ass and costing him this election.

Oh, one more thing.

I appears that Cambridge Anaylytica currently has a contract with our State Department: 

Strategic Communications Laboratories, best known for its work with its offshoot and collaborator Cambridge Analytica, appears to have an open contract with the State Department. DefenseOne first noted the contract on a government contracts database, where it is listed as still open.

Well, I ma going to have to take a really hot shower after this post to get the sleaze off. 

Another school shooting. This time in Maryland.

Courtesy of the AP: 

A shooting at a Maryland high school Tuesday wounded three people, including the shooter, a sheriff’s spokeswoman said. 

Authorities said the situation was “contained” as deputies and federal agents converged on the crime scene. 

St. Mary’s County Sheriff spokeswoman Cpl. Julie Yingling said three people hurt, including the shooter. She didn’t know the extent of their injuries, but said all three were taken to hospitals and none were killed. 

The Baltimore Sun reported that a student said the shooting happened around 8 a.m. Terrence Rhames, 18, told the Sun that he heard a gunshot and saw a girl fall as he ran for an exit. “I just thank God I’m safe,” Rhames said. “I just want to know who did it and who got injured.”

I held off on posting about this because as usual there was all kinds of misinformation coming out, including that there were far more than three shot, including some fatalities.

What we think we know now is that there was one shooter, weapon unknown, who fired on at least two students and was taken down by a school resource officer. The shooter and a female student remain in critical condition.
So keep in mind that the school HAS a police presence on campus and still there were students shot.

The fact that there were no fatalities (As of yet.) is good news, VERY good news.

The bad news is that it appears that this will never end.

Update: Okay new reports are that the shooter has died.

Let's hope he is the only fatality from this unfortunate, and all too common, incident.

Trump hires lawyer who embraces conspiracy theory that FBI and Justice Department worked together to frame him.

Courtesy of the New York Times: 

President Trump hired the longtime Washington lawyer Joseph E. diGenova on Monday, adding an aggressive voice to his legal team who has pushed the theory on television that the F.B.I. and Justice Department framed Mr. Trump.

“Former U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia Joe DiGenova will be joining our legal team later this week,” said Jay Sekulow, one of the president’s personal lawyers. “I have worked with Joe for many years and have full confidence that he will be a great asset in our representation of the President.” 

Mr. diGenova has endorsed the notion that a secretive group of F.B.I. agents concocted the Russia investigation as a way to keep Mr. Trump from becoming president. “There was a brazen plot to illegally exonerate Hillary Clinton and, if she didn’t win the election, to then frame Donald Trump with a falsely created crime,” he said on Fox News in January. He added, “Make no mistake about it: A group of F.B.I. and D.O.J. people were trying to frame Donald Trump of a falsely created crime.” 

Little evidence has emerged to support that theory.

Of course as we know Trump loves him some conspiracy theories, after all it was the Obama birth certificate conspiracy that brought him such national attention in the first place. And a conspiracy theory that suggests that he did nothing wrong and is being framed he would love that most of all.

Bringing this bomb thrower into the mix indicates to me that Trump has NO intention of agreeing to that interview with Robert Mueller.
I think all signs point to Trump tripling down and stonewalling the Mueller investigators while tweeting out that he is being framed by his own Justice Department, and is the victim of a massive liberal conspiracy to remove him from office without cause.

Just when you thought this whole thing could not possible get any crazier.

P.S. Just a reminder that there is a tweet for EVERYTHING.
Stupid New York Times being a week too early.

John Oliver turns his attention to Vice President Mike Pence. Poor Mike Pence. Update!

Courtesy of the AV Club: 

With the chaos at the Trump White House mounting every single day to what seems like an inevitable flashpoint involving a constitutional crisis, impeachment, indictment, diversionary declaration of war, or simply a White House staffed with no one but Trump relatives and their wedding planners, it’s tempting to look ahead to the theoretically more stable prospect of President Mike Pence. But, as John Oliver lays out in the main story of Sunday’s Last Week Tonight, be very fucking careful what you wish for.

Oliver, calling Pence “the opposite of whatever a silver fox is” (settling on “ashen weasel”), takes a hard, typically incisive and hilariously pissed off look at exactly how extreme the positions of the (current) Vice President are. From his vocal opposition to women in the military, his prayer-based non-response to an HIV outbreak in Indiana when he was governor, to his ongoing abetting and excusing of literally every ignorant, hateful, or outright lunatic and untrue thing that dribbles out of his boss’ mouth, Oliver presents a portrait of a man whose outward appearance of un-Trump-ian sanity barely conceals the frothing, right wing loon within. Especially when it comes to the LGBTQ community, where Pence’s long history of bigotry includes overt, verifiable support of one James Dobson and the organization Focus on the Family, your go-to zealots for “shock ‘em ‘til they’re not gay anymore” “conversion therapy.”

Of course the point Oliver is trying to make is that Mike Pence is a fucking three car pile up, which we all seem completely oblivious to because he is always standing next to the human train wreck.

Look I want Trump out of office at least as much as the next guy, probably more actually, but if we take him out and leave Pence in place we may simply find ourselves exchanging one walking nightmare for another.

Update: So apparently John Oliver's bunny book is outselling Mike Pence's bunny book.

Courtesy of The Daily Beast:  

On Sunday night John Oliver announced on HBO’s Last Week Tonight that A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, a children’s book about a gay bunny, named after a pet rabbit owned by the family of Vice President Mike Pence, would be available immediately. That meant it beat a rival children’s book, Marlon Bundo’s Day in the Life of the Vice President, written by Pence’s daughter, Charlotte, and illustrated by his wife, Karen, by mere hours to the digital shelves. 

As of Monday afternoon, Last Week Tonight’s book—which was written by Jill Twiss and illustrated by E.G. Keller, an artist from Pence’s home state of Indiana—was the No. 1 seller on Amazon, with the Pences’ book lagging noticeably behind at No. 6. With over 1,200 user reviews by that time, the Last Week Tonight book earned a rare five-star rating. The Pences’ effort had less than 50 reviews, and a woeful one-and-a-half-star rating.

I swear John Oliver is a national treasure. 

Two men injured outside a Utah gun show after their weapon exercised its 2nd Amendment rights.

Courtesy of KUTV: 

Two men are recovering from gunshot wounds after an accidental discharge in the parking lot of the Mountain America Expo Center in Sandy where the International Sportsmen's Expo was being held. 

According to Jason Nielsen from the Sandy Police Department, the two adult men were sitting in their car at 3:45 p.m. on Saturday when one tried to hand a firearm off to the other. 

The gun discharged hitting one man in the hand, ricocheting and hitting the other man in the leg. 

Both were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

The report does not say that the men just purchased the gun at the Sportsmen's Expo but that is likely the case. 

Which would mean that almost immediately after purchasing a weapon for protection they were injured by gun fire which could have potentially ended their lives.

There has got to be a lesson here somewhere.