Friday, February 1, 2008

Welcome to the Red Zone

And not because it's February, the month of red hearts and Valentines.

Those who know me well will tell you I am one of the most easy-going individuals you'll ever meet. But there is a point past which one does not want to go with me. I have postulated, and gotten confirmation, that the proportionate share of "nice" to "filled with rage and hate" is 95%: 5%. It's not easy to get to the 5%, and it's best not to try. I call it my Red Zone. As a defense attorney once told me after a particularly contentious deposition, "You're like a rabid golden look pretty and seem so nice, and then you turn on people and you bite 'em." (Yeah. You're welcome. They call that my JOB, numb-nuggets!) Yes, he got me to the Red Zone. Happens when your physically and mentally disabled client gets raped by his male caregiver, and your opposition is so morally vacant that he asks if he didn't "like it."

Anyway, here's one of today's news stories that has me over the edge and into the 'Zone:

BERKELEY, Calif. — [<-- Ha! Go figure...] Local officials in this liberal city say it's time for the U.S. Marines to move out.

The City Council has voted to tell the Marines their downtown recruiting station is not welcome and "if recruiters choose to stay, they do so as uninvited and unwelcome guests."
The measure passed this week by a vote of 8-1.

The council also voted to explore enforcing a city anti-discrimination law, focusing on the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

In a separate item, the council voted, also 8-1, to give protest group Code Pink a parking space in front of the recruiting office once a week for six months and a free sound permit for protesting once a week.*

Marine Capt. Richard Lund of the recruiting office declined comment on the council action.
The recruiting office opened in Berkeley about a year ago, operating quietly until about four months ago when Code Pink began regular sidewalk protests.

"I believe in the Code Pink cause. The Marines don't belong here, they shouldn't have come here, and they should leave," said Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates.

Code Pink is circulating petitions to get a measure on the ballot in November making it more difficult to open military recruiting offices in Berkeley if they are near homes, parks, schools, churches, libraries or health clinics.
[Just don't try to put those same restrictions on sex offenders, 'kay? - Ed.]

Some employees and business owners aren't happy with the weekly protests.
"My husband's business is right upstairs, and this (protesting) is bordering on harassment," Dori Schmidt told the council. "I hope this stops."
[because it hurts your business or because it offends your patriotic sensibilities, ma'am? - Ed.]

*Interesting. I wonder if the ACLU will spend millions to put a stop to the free parking space, like they did a few years back in San Diego to stop the city from leasing land to the Boy Scouts for a dollar a year, and forcing the cross on Mt. Helix at the Veteran's Cemetery to be removed after the County attempted to privatize that piece of land in order to preserve the cross. Same principle, isn't it? A governmental/municipal entity giving land at below-market value to a private organization? It is not to be borne! (And don't pull the free speech shibboleth out on me...)

Note to all terrorists: Invade San Francisco! They don't want the Marines there....yet.

Then there's this one:

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Female suicide bombers blew themselves up Friday at two markets in Baghdad, killing at least 64 people and wounding more than 100, authorities said. [...]*

In both bombings, the attackers were wearing suicide vests, according to Qasim Atta, a spokesman for the Baghdad security plan. [...]

Atta told state TV that both women were mentally disabled and their explosives were remotely detonated.

*For the entire story:

Look. I am a huge military supporter - I have family and friends who are THERE. NOW. So for both selfish and philosophical reasons, I hate the fact that we are at war. I hate the evil that people are capable of in doing the things that precipitated and have prolonged this particular war. But these are not always necessarily Red Zone issues. However, NO ONE here at home better mess with our ALL VOLUNTEER members of the armed forces. The maxium period of military enlistment is 6 years. It has been over 6 years since 9/11/01. So these people are serving by choice in a time of war, knowing all to well what they risk by serving. Anyone who denigrates their service - their FREE SPEECH rights to express their patriotism by offering their very lives to serve - gets no quarter from me. Especially when 1) they use the intellectual chicanery of crying "Free Speech" and wrap themselves in the flag (which flag they'd just as soon burn) to do it, AND 2) are aided and abetted by local leftist governmental authorities as in the case of the Berkeley recruiters. And when the weak and vulnerable are used in this way (as weapons of mass destruction), when babies are cooked in microwaves, when you mess with the innocence of have hit the 5%!!!

UPDATE: Forgot to link this one (baby in microwave), in my red-haze frenzy this morning...,2933,327385,00.html

And now there's this (headline only):

Exxon Posts Record Profit on Oil Prices
HOUSTON (Feb. 1) - Exxon Mobil Corp. on Friday posted the largest annual profit by a U.S. company - $40.6 billion - as the world's largest publicly traded oil company benefited from historic crude prices at year's end.
[Wow...2 "rape" references in one post. Sorry! - Ed.]


WhiteStoneNameSeeker said...

There's a lot in this post.
I worked with a similar rape case to the one you mention-but the victim was a young woman. I was horrified at the attitude that somehow it was less important that she had been raped because she was mentally disabled-and what would she know?

The story of blowing up mentally disabled people-used as human bombs, shows how Satan rules those people.

Thank you that your family are willing to make such huge sacrifices to stand up to this.
God bless

the mother of this lot said...

'Note to all terrorists: Invade San Francisco! They don't want the Marines there....yet'.

'Yet' being the operative word. I hope they don't need them sometime soon.

I also hope fervently that I never hit your Red Zone.

KitBrookside said...


Mother, I's hard to get me there, and somehow I don't see you waving the red cape at me! :)

I was so steamed when I was posting after checking the news this morning, I forgot to add the "baby cooked in microwave link." Needless to say, my Porage Oats stayed in the box after I saw that one.

DigiHairshirt said...

I saw this same story and it pissed the hell out of me. This is why I try to stay south of the 91 Freeway at all times.

Kit, you must go and read my pleading on my blog. The tentative is in my favor, natch!

ArchAngel's Advocate said...

Please don't blame San Francisco for Berkeley's follies (San Francisco has its own problems but hating the military ain't one of them. SF still has a Fleet Week for the Navy). Only Berkeley would elect Gov. Moonbeam (otherwise known as Jerry Brown) to be its mayor, and it is one town where they openly smoke pot. 1 good cruise missle downtown would be considered civic improvement. (A SF columnist would regularly call Berkeley "Berserkly".

KitBrookside said...

AA, I wouldn't indict SF without cause, honest, because I really do dwell in the 95% world most of the time. So, I humbly beg to differ and direct your attention here:

SF is just about as's the parking space thing that really gets me "T.O.'d" (think Kip from Mapoleon Dynamite)...But I digress...I wonder if they'd give me the same free spot and "sound permit" if I wanted to protest against Planned Parenthood or an abortion clinic? (Hmmm....could be interesting, come to think of it....)

DigiHairshirt said...


I like your analogy of The red Zone. I would like to think that I am a reasonable and level-headed attorney, and I think a lot of my colleagues in my locality would agree. It's good lawyering, especially in family law where you can save the clients money and heartache by having two lawyers who know each other and can work together, while still advocating for their clients.

But now and then, I get that opposing party or opposing counsel who just pushes me into the Red Zone. I recently made an appearance for another attorney where she needed a continunace on her own motion because she was hospitalized. I went up to opposing counsel, introduced myself, and then asked if she would oppose a continuance. "Yes," she snapped, "I'm objecting to it!" and walked away. Nice. I got it, of course, but not until the other attorney postured like an idiot, making the comment about the absentee attorney for whom I was making the appearance - you know, the one who is in the hospital, for Christ's sake - "for all we know she's in the Bahamas!" What a piece of work. Highway to the Red Zone.

Kelly said...


As a veteran I can tell you that I was never treated badly for wearing the uniform by the public and was openly thanked for serving after 9/11. I believe service to our country is a noble calling and hate to see extreme measures to prevent potential recruits from exploring that calling. I have seen in the news up here groups who try to prevent recruiters from entering high schools in the Seattle area. For some it is the right thing at the right time and who are these people to try to stand in the way? Keep defending those who defend us!

KitBrookside said...

Kelly - my husband (a very quiet, reserved guy) was a USMC recruiter in Scottsdale, AZ just after the first foray into the Gulf, and it was not an easy 39 months - he was in the top 1% in his MOS, so when he went to volunteer for Embassy duty as his B-Billet, his career planner denied his request and instead recommended him for recruiting. He was horrified. He was not the "in your face OOH-RAH!" type, and was working in a very wealthy area, with kids of Boomers and 60's leftovers, who took great delight in being as abusive and disrespectful as they could. He was derided, had doors slammed in his face, was screamed at and spit on by parents, openly mocked by high school teachers, you name it. He managed to eke out his quota each month, often leaving the house at 4 a.m. and not getting home until after 10 p.m., having trolled at all the local malls and sporting events as the end of the month drew near. And he took it all in stride, because for every nutter, there were 2-3 more wonderful, appreciative people (mostly seniors and WWII vets) who thanked him, brought him dinner when they saw his office lights on, you name it.

When I think of that balance tipped in the other direction, by privileged people who have no notion of what it means to SACRIFICE beyond opting for skim over 1% in their morning latte, it sickens me. (Wonder how a Code Pink chapter in Baghdad or Tehran would fare?) No quarter.

He sat in that office with his "poolies" (kids who'd signed but were still waiting to finish high school/go to boot camp) helping them with homework, getting them to court to clear up traffic tickets, writing letters to encourage them in boot camp, and standing color guard duty at funerals, notifying parents of any Marine whose kids were hurt or killed anywhere in the world -- it's a tough gig. It is not about lying and encouraging kids to go off and have fun raping, pillaging and slaughtering Iraqis, as those wackos choose to believe. Again, no quarter.

Interestingly, after my beloved's stint in Scottsdale, no recruiter was ever successful in that office again, and it closed a few years after he left. He always says that God sent him there to challenge him (he loved his CFR job and was floating along happily) and then reward him. As miserable as he was, he did manage to nab a particularly fabulous wife duty.


gemoftheocean said...

I don't mind at all if people burn the flag, but if they do they better be wrapped in it with gasoline poured over themselves. One less leftist cretin on the planet.

Honestly...there are times where you want to yell at someone: "I would kill you right here, right now, for saying/doing/being so morally vacant - HOWEVER, it is by grace of God you are dealing with someone who is afraid of hell, and not only that, but moreover, feels close enough to 100% certain that she is too frightened to risk not being sorry for killing your miserable hide which allows you to keep breathing."

But I normally "stiffle" that.

gemoftheocean said...

oh, and meant to say your music request was granted :-D -- I threw in an extra from you because you made me shudder remember my time in New Hampshire.

KitBrookside said...

Hey Digi - oh yeah...there's a category of those lovely "colleagues" (term used loosely) of the Bar out there who either have their name on the grille of the big Mack truck of fate, or their own special ring in Dantean Hell, as the case may be. No offense to the Schnauzer of the same name, of course. (But then again...I'd settle for the hirsute Dante to "accidentally" leave an offering in or near their offices and hence, on their shoes...)

Seriously though, I always wonder about those attys out there who personalize EVERYTHING and are nasty because it's like they feel the need to prove something, even when there's nothing immediately at stake. How miserable are they at home/in their personal lives? What is the real cause of the perpetual rage? You know, those times you just want to look at 'em from your side of the podium and say "Grow up, already - it ain't about YOU!"

Don't get me wrong, I'll throw down with those of that ilk any time, anywhere, if it's in my client's best interests, but so often, when you get that kind of disproportionately awful response to the simplest of requests, dontcha wish you could pass them a Lawyer's Assistance Program card?

(Here I go, rambling away on a Saturday...)