And Sometimes, The Suburban Dad Next Door Is - Get This - A Terrorist
In case you missed it (and given last night's GOP debate and the NCAA's decision not to pursue its investigation into whether Cam Newton tried to cash in on his collegiate football talent, it's understandable if you did), the U.S. State Department is aflutter over revelations the Iranian government tried to whack a Saudi ambassador in Washington.
Yeah, this is kind of a big deal, for a number of reasons. Aside from the fact countries just don't run around whacking ambassadors from other countries as a matter of principle, the fact that it was Iran trying to play the role of mafia boss further complicates a number of things in the Middle East picture, not to mention our relationship with Tehran. The Saudis, of course, are livid; the State Department is a hair shy of saber rattling. Needless to say, this is not how Ahmadinejad should win friends and influence people. (On a side note, you can't spell Ahmadinejad without "mad." Or "dine.")
As I traditionally ask in rhetorical fashion - why should we, the proud members of the Suburban Dad Survivalist Nation - care about what the Mad Diner is doing to some other Middle Eastern country? For starters, it's an important lesson in where terrorists come from.
Now before you say "Paul, we all know terrorists come from the Middle East," let's learn more about one particular yahoo involved in this goat rodeo. Manssor Arbabsiar, an Iranian national charged in the plot, lives in a suburb. A mere 18 miles away from my house.
The Austin American Statesman reported Arbabsiar lived in Round Rock, Texas, a typical American suburb just north of Austin. According to one of the neighbors, ""This is very eye-opening when you live next door to someone and you just think they're weird."
I don't recommend being all paranoid and calling the FBI the next time your foreign born neighbor acts asocial towards you. Otherwise, in my hood, I'd be calling them a lot if that were the case. Plus, that's a lousy way to live your life. And like them, we, too, were once foreigners in this land.
But it serves as a stark reminder the suburban dad next door could very well be planning some sort of terrorist act, which ironically makes me wonder what my neighbors say about me. In any event, I am not sure what we're to do with this story, other than remain vigilant in these interesting times.
Be The Sheepdog
I've not spent any time talking about the certification class I am taking this week - the one where, if I pass tomorrow's written test and Friday's shooting test on the range, I will be eligible to teach the concealed handgun licensing course in Texas.
In today's class, we listened to the 911 call made by Pasadena, TX resident Joe Horn. You can listen to the entire eight minute call here, which I recommend any gun owner who plans to use a firearm to defend themselves or their homes:
Clearly, Joe Horn put himself into a position he should not have. Nonetheless, the grand jury refused to indict him for killing two men, causing a great amount of protests and controversy.
Our instructors like to tell us that the CHL community needs to be the sheepdogs of society. We are not called to be law enforcement or vigilantes; we're to learn from the mistakes of Mr. Horn. Rather, we are good citizens who, by virtue of our training and desire to live in a safe community, often feel compelled to rush to the aid of others in distress.
This may mean exercising our rights to use deadly force to stop a child from being murdered. It may also mean stopping to help someone on the side of the road in distress, a neighbor who has injured themselves, or simply removing a piece of debris in the roadway. Being a good citizen doesn't end with simply being law-abiding. It means we help those in need.
The Suburban Dad Survivalist Nation should remember that.