Chris from NYADP asks:
Which book/ movie/ TV/ comic book character best represents how you actually are right now?
That would be Bruce Banner. He is the guy who has anger management issues. Fortunately, I was raised well enough that I don’t act on my pent-up rage so I don’t Hulk out. But sometimes, things just infuriate me.

One example is the story of Kenneth Chamberlain, a 68-year-old veteran of the U.S. Marines, was killed in his home by the police in White Plains, NY, on November 19, 2011, after his medical alert device was accidentally set off. According to his son, the audio device installed in his father’s home as part of his medical alert system captured racial slurs – Chamberlain was black – and after the door was knocked down, being Tased before being shot dead.

You’ve probably heard about shooting death of unarmed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin at the hands of “neighborhood watch” vigilante George Zimmerman on February 26. There may be disagreement over just what happened that night, but there’s little doubt that incompetent police work after the fact was involved.

From here: “Zimmerman, who is white, called police from his SUV and told them he was following a ‘suspicious’ character. The dispatcher promised to send a prowl car and told Zimmerman to stay in his vehicle. He didn’t. When police arrived, they found him with a bloody nose and Martin face down on the grass not far from his father’s door, a gunshot wound in his chest.”

The more overriding issue, though, is Florida’s controversial law, which protects from prosecution someone who uses deadly force if that person “reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.”

I was SO enraged for a couple days that my stomach was in knots. And there have been others who have been victims of the “shoot first, ask questions later” laws in about two dozen US states. The Sunshine State’s version is clearly the worst. I thought President Obama addressed the issue quite well.

On the other hand, I’ve been disappointed in some of President Obama’s policies…which leads to-

Tom the Mayor, my old FantaCo buddy, asks:

Has Barack Obama disappointed you in any way, I feel that he has missed some great opportunities to enact more changes, especially after the election when he had majorities in both houses? I will still vote for him, but it is kind of sad.

I really think that the failure in the first two years of office was tied to the his evidently false notion that he was dealing with rational people. In fact, given the vitriol he had to deal with by day 100, it became clear to me that the folks he was working with across the aisle were not playing the same game. He thought he’d have a honeymoon, which, in very many ways, did not occur. I believe he didn’t want to come off as the “angry black guy,” even though some painted him that way anyhow.

He was working harder in the interregnum than I’ve EVER seen a guy not yet President work. But he, like most, underestimated the depth of the recession. So, by saying that the unemployment rate wouldn’t get under 8%, he clearly miscalculated.

Still, there were things I liked (gay rights, e.g.), and a few I don’t like at all. A couple recent examples of the latter:

H.R. 347 expands the power of the Secret Service and police to arrest protesters near a ‘protected person’ or at special public events like nominating conventions… [It] passed the House of Representatives by a 388 to 3 margin and was signed, shortly thereafter, by President Obama, on Friday March 9, 2012.

The Obama DOJ’s decision to charge more national security whistleblowers under the Espionage Act than all other administrations combined.

When I probably end up voting for him, it’s only because the guy who will run against him would likely have championed the same things, and far worse.

Chris also asked:
Which book/ movie/ TV/ comic book character represents the person you’d most like be?

Kwai Chang Caine from the TV show Kung Fu: “The demands of his training as a priest in addition to the sense of social responsibility which was instilled within him during his childhood, forced Caine to repeatedly come into the open to fight for justice. He would then leave his new surroundings in a further search for anonymity and security.” He had a certain calm, as well as skills to turn the fight back on the attacker.

I was so impressed with Democratic Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner, who, in response to those men wanting to legislate woman’s reproductive health, introduced legislation that would introduce new hurdles for men who want Viagra: proof that they have sought sex therapy, and a sexual partner’s notarized statement verifying their impotency. Very much turning the aggression back on itself. Brilliant; very Caine.

More from Amy at Sharp Little Pencil:

1. Do you think that when our hometown boy Rod Serling said, “Everybody has to have a hometown; mine is Binghamton,” he was being in any way sarcastic?

Absolutely NOT. I read his biography by Joel Engel last summer. Rod LOVED Binghamton, felt safe there. Here’s the fuller quote:
Everybody has to have a hometown. Binghamton’s mine. In the strangely brittle, terribly sensitive makeup of a human being, there is a need for a place to hang a hat or a kind of geographical womb to crawl back into, or maybe just a place that’s familiar because that’s where you grew up. When I dig back through memory cells I get one particularly distinctive feeling-and that’s one of warmth, comfort and well being. For whatever else I may have had, or lost or will find-I’ve still got a hometown. This nobody’s gonna take away from me.

BTW, did you see that story about Binghamton being the least hopeful city in America?

3. What is your favorite single cut of all time – 45 or album cut, and by whom?

Amy, you’re a cruel woman, you know that? I have so many tunes running in my head at any given time. Still, I’ll go with God Only Knows by the Beach Boys; incidentally Brian Wilson turns 70 in June. Although there is a woman in my choir who’s having a baby in July; his code name is Rufus, and I’ve had Tell Me Something Good stuck in my head ever since.

4. Why is there air? (Ha ha, know you dig Cosby)

And I still have that Cosby LP, Why Is There Air? BTW, take this test to see how well you know that album. But going off from that, air is there so politicians can make it hot; probably the REAL reason behind global warming.

4 Responses to “Me as fictional characters, plus Obama, Serling, Cosby”

  • I read the srticle about Kenneth Chamberlain and confess that I’m still scratching my head over why the police were there in the first place if this was a medical incident. Or why if they were there they felt it appropriate to break someone’s door down and enter with weapons raised. It seems peculiar through UK eyes, or perhaps I’m missing something.

    We have heard about the Trayvon Martin case, more because of the furore that followed. Again it’s hard for us to imagine a citizen driving round with a gun in his possession and being legally allowed to shoot someone without serious justification.

  • Cool choices.

    My original ones for “who I am” were Kathy from “Never Let Me Go” (the book, not the movie – I haven’t seen the movie.) And the Maxx, from the MTV series “The Maxx”: “I try to save people. Mostly I end up… breaking things.”

    My original ones for “who I want to be” are Iron Man (movies not the comic book – I haven’t read the comic book) and Ripply from Alien.

    But your Kwai Chang Caine made me remember a whole other series of “who I am/ who I want to be” which include “Who I am: The Monkey King, in the first half of the novel “Journey to the West.” He’s a quixotic character, mind jumping to thing to thing, and ridiculous because he prides himself on being smart but he’s terribly unwise. And “who I want to be” include the dozen Jet Li characters that fit pretty well with your Caine character. Particularly Junbao in Twin Warriors.

    Based on your description of Caine I’d really recommend Jet Li. Also the 1993 “Iron Monkey,” which is all about a meditative hero establishing social justice mixed in with some lighthearted traditional Chinese stories such as the folk hero Wong Fei-hung.

  • Greg Burgas says:

    It makes no difference whatsoever, but do you consider Zimmerman, who’s part Hispanic, white? Some people are trying to downplay the racial aspect of the crime because Zimmerman doesn’t look like a Swede.

  • Concerning the murder of Travon Martin by George Zimmerman:

    1) MSNBC loudly reported that Zimmerman’s brother said he was bloodied and had a broken nose from being attacked. But a police video of Zimmerman entering the police station shortly after the murder shows none of that. Zimmerman looked fine.

    2) Voice analysis has shown that the voice desperately calling for help was Travon Martin’s voice, not Zimmerman’s as the media claimed… or heavily implied.

    Yeah, ain’t it great how the corporate media takes an obviously racially motivated murder and an obviously racially motivated police coverup and make it, well, “not so cut and dried after all.”

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