Those of us old enough to have been teenagers when a Kool-Aid alternative came along with names like Goofy Grape, Freckle Face Strawberry, and my personal fave... Rootin' Tootin' Raspberry, understand there are several methods to handle a bully, or anyone who's attempting to force their will upon others. Physically aggressive bullies are easy. A well placed fist or elbow to the solar plexus will leave him bent over, gagging, puking, sucking wind trying to catch his breath. A less forceful, and easier, alternative might be a quick bladder shot, because even the toughest bully in the schoolyard will learn humility when, like those three little pigs, he's going "wee wee wee" all the way home to change clothes. Either way, meeting bullies head on will generally cause them to steer clear in the future. If not, well, there are other means to deal with those situations... the prime directive being one rule, neutralize the threat.
Bullies take on several forms, don't they. Physical aggression, non-physical aggression or what I prefer to call "Boot Corporal" behavior, passive-aggression, are all forms of bullying. Sometimes it's nothing more than a good old fashioned hissy-fit with gnashing of teeth, flailing of arms, throwing stuff, and wild-eyed accusations of democrats poisoning the results of a legitimate primary election.
Speaking of Rhonda Thurman, who claims to be a hard-core Republican, has a seat on the Hamilton County Republican Party's County Executive Committee (CEC), and couldn't see fit to campaign for the seat on the Hamilton County Commission she's coveted so long, during the most recent party primary, but was absolutely beside herself when her little cart got tipped over by Randy Fairbanks prevailing in the contest with her mentor, Mr. Skillern, isn't that exactly what she's doing, attempting to bully her way through? I'm the last person to advocate standing in line and avoiding conflict, but as an elected official, and Republican CEC member, isn't she obligated to abide by the results of that contest? To claim to be a Republican, isn't she obligated to abide by the published rules of the party?
Over the years the Republican Party elders such as Messrs. Wood, Bennett, Coker, Van Shaft, Ramsey et al have told us we need to support the Republican, the individual who prevailed in the primary. Likewise, we've listened to Mrs. Thurman tell others "It's time for you to pull up your big girl (or boy) panties, suck it up, and go about your business." Never would I presume to make such a comment to a lady, at least not publicly, but will continue to ask party officials when they're going to censure Mrs. Thurman for conduct unbecoming an elected official representing the Hamilton County Republican Party... even if she occupies a non-partisan elected office. And since Mrs. Thurman has made her rebuke of the primary process public, and the rules of the party, censure must also be public. There's only one basic method to address the tactics of a bully, direct confrontation of poor behavior.
It goes directly to the heart of the difference between hard corps and hard corpse.
On the other hand, sometimes bullying can be quite subtle.
Back in the '50s, the Rand Corporation developed a process, the Delphi Method, sometimes called the Delphi Technique, for systematically forecasting of results to be realized by applying technology to warfare. It was later applied to forecasting business cycles and sales. Basically, the process consists of a facilitator, sometimes a facilitation team, that guides participants through the process of reaching consensus about an issue. There are, as with any field, training programs for this system and it can be rather complex. My book is something over 600 pages, for example, but the bottom line is that facilitators are taught to be at all times non-confrontational or, as Patrick Swayze instructed his bouncers in the movie Roadhouse, be nice.
Then the mercenaries and fear-mongers bastardized the process.
Take, for example, a group of citizens meeting to discuss the affect of man's activities on global climate. The organizers assign a nice lady with a degree in art, music, ballet, English, or some other of the hard sciences, because she has creds, to be the facilitator. She begins with the prepared statement "The past 35 years have been the hottest in almost 400 years." which, on its face, is incorrect because the decade of the 1930s was provably the warmest of the 20th century, there has been no world-wide increase in temperatures since 1996 and global temperatures have actually been decreasing since that year. Add to this the fact most ground surface weather monitoring stations from which data (data being the plural form of those singular little datum hickiebobs) are collected don't meet the specifications of the World Meteorological Organization, beginning with a minimum 100 ft. distance from artificial heat sources and surrounded by that much grass. When she adds little details about ultraviolet radiation, which ought to be infrared, industrial CO2 emissions, when most volcanic eruptions emit more than mankind, as a whole, has produced since the dawn of history, and we have significant issues of accuracy... beginning with the opening statement. Throwing around names and statements of great scientists of history does not a scientist make. It's easy to toss out $5 expressions such as Fourier transform, FFT, Avogadro's constant, coulomb, vector force, L'Hospital's rule, and a plethora of others, but if we don't know what they are or how to use what they represent they're just fluff. But when a nice lady's facts are challenged, all of a sudden the bull-eed becomes the bully-er, doesn't he... or she.
That's the image the mercenaries want. Make the person who's actually wrong into the victim.
In his book Confrontational Politics, Gun Owners of America founder and former California state Senator H.L. Richardson proposes the average American, citizen of the greatest nation to ever grace the face of Planet Terra, is uncomfortable with confrontation, that it's unbecoming and should be avoided whenever possible. But there are those who take advantage of this and use it against us. He states the average American has allowed himself to become vulnerable to, and a victim of, his own decency. A premise strikingly similar to one posed almost 40 years earlier by another writer and philosopher, Ayn Rand, in her essay The Argument from Intimidation.
Uncomfortable with confrontation... victims of our own decency. Let's think about that just a moment.
Mrs. Clinton asked what difference it makes, after all those days, that Americans died in a land far away, and their Brothers in Arms were told to stand down. Our national borders might as well not be there. The Chamber of Commerce wants more immigrants... when 37.5% of Americans who can work, don't. The Chamber of Commerce and our own Legislature want to legalize 20 to 30 Million illegal aliens, when there are 92,594,000 (that's 92.594 Million y'all) legal American citizens unemployed... a statistic from our own government. Open borders and illegal aliens charging into our great nation have brought back diseases that were all but eliminated in our society until recently, including measles and tuberculosis and leprosy... not to mention the crimes and violence perpetrated upon citizens by illegal non-citizens. Our children aren't learning what they need to become self sufficient citizens in schools. 64% of Millennial Generation women are having at least one bastard child, and it's estimated half will never have a child with a daddy in the home.
Eighty percent of Veterans' Administration officials receive performance bonuses, when Veterans are dying because they can't get into hospitals as promised, part of the covenant entered into when they pledged their lives to this great nation. How do those mercenaries sleep at night?
Screaming, both legal citizen and illegal occupant, minorities are demanding citizens accept their lifestyles. Most Americans could care less if someone's as queer, look that one up in Webster's, as a $9 bill but they also don't want the lifestyles of others shoved in their faces, or be forced to accept what they find repulsive.
And IRS bureaucrats smugly look down their noses at members of Congress, members elected by The Peeps to represent The Peeps, while being questioned about not just unethical, but illegal activities... activities that have violated the basic, unalienable and indefeasible, rights of American citizens.
There are those who will tell us to be nice, that our elected officials should be statesmanlike, that conflict is unbecoming the status of their offices. They forget, however, there was a time when it wasn't unusual to have fistfights in those hallowed halls of congress. They forget about Tennessee Favorite Son, one Colonel David Crockett, the guy who died at The Alamo killing Mexican aggressors just weeks shy of his 50th birthday, hand-to-hand in the end, at a time when the average lifespan in America was about 40, not the guy who drives around downtown Chattanooga in a black Suburban while telling the rest of us we need to be more conservative of natural resources, but the Colonel went down swinging. They forget the story about one of the more aristocratic legislators whacking Colonel Crockett with his cane during a disagreement, and received the whuppin' of his life for smacking the wrong Dude.
They forget the rights of individuals were primary, and steadfastly protected, during that period of our great nation.
Having long ago decided my face is too pretty for any more scars, far be it from me to ever advocate violence except in the event of imminent danger. However, there comes a time when civility, a policy of avoiding conflict at all costs, is not appropriate. There comes a time when the expression of righteous outrage, a figurative elbow to the solar plexus, is not only appropriate, but mandated.
There comes a time when grabbing a bar of dark, chile pepper infused chocolate, perhaps with a side of cayenne pepper, a cup of coffee and a smoke, sitting in a rocking chair, rubbing The Gang's ears while watching the sunrise is mandated too...
Royce Burrage, Jr.
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I always enjoy Royce's articles but never as much as today.
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Censure Ms. Thurman? Censure Ms. Thurman?
For exercising her legal, codified right to wage a write-in campaign for elected office?
With no fewer than two demeaning letters this month alone from the esteemed Mr. Burrage, who resides (and has for several years) in a neighboring county, I'm beginning to suspect I know who the bully is.
Censure Rhonda Thurman?
Please let me know, Mr. Burrage, if you browbeat anyone into censuring Rhonda Thurman.
I think that was tried by a posse in north Chattanooga several years ago when they complained to the state attorney general imploring him to censure her. Didn't work then and don't think it will now, but just in case it does, please let me know. I'll want a ringside seat for that.
In the meantime, I suggest you tend to your big boy panties and let her tend to hers.
Write in Rhonda, folks.