BlueNC's blog

Saturday News: The tip of the proliferation iceberg

FELON SHOWING OFF AR-15 SHOOTS INTO NEIGHBOR'S HOME IN ASHEVILLE: The neighbor, Christopher Allen Ducker, told police he “was showing off an AR-15 to his friends and accidentally fired the gun,” police said. “The round went through his wall, through a privacy fence, and then ultimately ended up in his neighbor’s wall,” officials said. Police seized a 5.56 Ruger AR-15 and a .308 Remington bolt-action rifle at Ducker’s home, officials said. Ducker was charged with discharge of a firearm in the city, possession of a firearm by a felon, and discharging a weapon into occupied property, police said. What's missing from this story is how he acquired this assault rifle, arguably the most important detail. He most likely had a friend buy it for him, or he bought it in a private sale, two major loopholes in our permitting system.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/state/north-carolina/article255036877.html#storylink=mainstage_card

Friday News: Take your damn shot

SOME RALEIGH EMPLOYEES ARE ACTING LIKE LITTLE CHILDREN: More than 100 Raleigh police officers, firefighters and other city employees are threatening legal action over vaccine requirements they say are discriminatory. City of Raleigh Freedom to Choose, a coalition of 53 Raleigh police officers, 48 firefighters and 17 other city employees, has hired attorney James Lawrence to fight the city’s policies, according to a letter sent by Lawrence to Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin on Monday. In the letter, Lawrence cited the weekly testing requirement for non-vaccinated employees, cash bonus and paid leave incentives and a policy limiting promotions to those who are fully vaccinated as examples of a “discriminatory COVID-19 mandate.” Lawrence said the group is not “anti-vax,” and “supports the right of city employees to make their own informed medical treatment choices,” including whether to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Frankly, if their own "informed" opinion tells them not to, they shouldn't be on the payroll, much less toting a firearm in public.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/counties/wake-county/article254997277.html#storylink=mainstage

Thursday News: Love wins, in the long run

RALEIGH CITY COUNCIL TO VOTE ON LGBTQ+ NON-DISCRIMINATION ORDINANCE: The Raleigh City Council will vote next week on expanding the city’s ordinances to ban discrimination based on a person’s sexual orientation and gender identity. Tuesday, the City Council discussed joining Wake County’s non-discrimination ordinance with all members agreeing to vote on a resolution Oct. 19. The resolution is not meant to create a new ordinance for the city, but to adopt the county’s ordinance presented Oct. 11. “This is the right thing to do,” said Jonathan Melton, an at-large city council member who is gay. “It is long overdue.” The ordinance would expand the city’s existing non-discrimination rules established in 1969, said Raleigh city attorney Robin Tatum. But under the county’s ordinance, these rules would now apply to private employers and public accommodations, like restaurants and retail stores. Bolding mine, because that rocks.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article254956527.html#storylink=mainstage_card

Wednesday News: Indefensible

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ROBINSON GETS A TONGUE-LASHING FROM RELIGIOUS LEADERS: On Monday night, some liberal religious leaders from around the Triangle gathered outside Robinson’s office to give three demands: They said he needed to apologize, make himself available to the faith and community leaders for a conversation, and, if he didn’t meet the first two requirements, that he needed to resign. “Any person who chooses to be a leader of humankind, by seeking election to public office, knows that their words and their actions have the power to make life better or worse for the people they serve,” said Rev. Vance Haywood, pastor of St. John’s Metropolitan Community Church in Raleigh. “Those words and those actions can even put the lives of people at risk.” Rep. Cynthia Ball, a Raleigh Democrat, said she has asked several fellow N.C. House members in the Republican Party if they’d be willing to talk about Robinson’s comments, but none responded. “For them, I think it’s some kind of party politics,” Dahle said. It always is.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article254944382.html#storylink=mainstage_card

Monday News: Seventeen thousand, one hundred four

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OVER 1.4 MILLION NORTH CAROLINIANS HAVE CONTRACTED CORONAVIRUS: At least 1,425,062 people in North Carolina have tested positive for the coronavirus, and at least 17,104 have died since March 2020, according to state health officials. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services on Friday reported 4,078 new COVID-19 cases, up from 3,781 on Thursday. At least 2,467 people were reported hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Friday, including 676 adult patients who are being treated in intensive care units, health officials said. On Wednesday, the latest date with available information, 6.7% of coronavirus tests were reported positive. Roughly 70% of adults in North Carolina have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine, and about 65% have been fully vaccinated. That's still not enough.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/coronavirus/article254873622.html#storylink=mainstage_card

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

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ALLOW THE POST OFFICE TO GET BACK INTO THE BANKING BUSINESS: A robust postal banking system is a development that progressives, and the American Postal Workers Union, have long favored. Many Americans, especially those in lower income and minority communities, don’t trust the financial system or don’t have easy access to it. “One in four American households is unbanked or underbanked, including half of all Black households,” notes the Save the Post Office Coalition. “This leads to costly alternatives that function as a lifetime tax on accessing your own money.” The American Postal Workers Union negotiated a banking pilot program in its 2016 contract, but the previous postmaster general declined to act on it. When DeJoy came in, the union redoubled its efforts and persuaded him to give it a shot. Of course, any significant expansion would require legislation. Which means — all together now! — that Congress needs to make itself useful. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., has been championing postal banking for a few years. As part of its agenda, the Save the Post Office Coalition wanted Congress to include a more expansive test program in the appropriations for the 2022 fiscal year. This is a great idea, and could improve the quality of life for many.
https://www.wral.com/louis-dejoy-is-doing-something-progressives-like/19916706/

Saturday News: Detestable

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JEFF JACKSON CALLS FOR ROBINSON'S RESIGNATION AFTER HE CALLED LGBTQ "FILTH": Robinson, a Republican, made the comments in June at Asbury Baptist Church in Seagrove but a portion of the speech was posted Tuesday on the Twitter profile for Right Wing Watch. “There’s no reason anybody, anywhere in America should be telling children about transgenderism, homosexuality, any of that filth,” Robinson said. “Yes, I called it filth.” Kendra Johnson, director of Equality NC, told The N&O in a written statement that her organizations condemns Robinson’s “dangerous rhetoric.” “There’s no debate here,” said Sen. Jeff Jackson, a Mecklenburg County Democrat. “This is open discrimination. It is completely unacceptable. Mark Robinson should resign.” And this is why Republicans will never pass a law in NC authorizing recall elections.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article254857437.html#storylink=mainstage_card

Friday News: Jim Crow rides again

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GOP EXTREMIST "LAWMAKERS" ARE GOING AFTER DURHAM VOTERS: Conservative Republicans in the North Carolina House said Thursday morning that they plan to investigate voting machines used in the 2020 election in Durham County for modems or other ways they could have been connected to the internet. And they plan to use the legislature’s police to help them do so. “We will do whatever it takes to go about our mission,” said Rep. Jeff McNeely, an Iredell County Republican and member of the freedom caucus, a group of very conservative House Republicans. McNeely and other freedom caucus members pulled Durham County — a Democratic stronghold — out of a hat that they said contained the names of all 100 counties during a press conference at the legislature Thursday morning. Riiight, they just happened to pull Durham out of a hat. Roll up your pantlegs, the shit's gettin' deep.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article254825392.html#storylink=mainstage_card

Thursday News: Hold your horses...

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ENVIRONMENTAL GROUPS STILL NOT HAPPY WITH REVAMPED ENERGY BILL: The solar industry questioned some of the bill's language, with Carolinas Clean Energy Business Association lobbyist Alex Miller saying "there could be years of expensive” litigation to clear up "ambiguities" in the bill. Miller did not elaborate, but solar companies have gone round after round with Duke in recent years over how much solar power can be added to the grid at what cost. "But, ultimately, the bill still allows Duke Energy too much room to wiggle out of carbon reductions, and we can't squeeze our noses hard enough to support it," North Carolina League of Conservation Voters lobbyist Dan Crawford said in a statement. "It would allow Duke too much power to thwart our clean energy future and pad its profits at the expense of low-income communities and North Carolinians of color, and could give Duke veto power equal to that of the Utilities Commission." Is there such a thing as a reverse bait-and-switch, where they start with something horrendous and tweak it a little? Sorry, having a bad vocabulary day.
https://www.wral.com/bold-step-bipartisan-support-for-energy-bill-as-some-worry-over-costs-ambiguiti...

Wednesday News: You don't get to do that.

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MCCRORY BACKERS HEADED TO COURT FOR MALIGNING VOTERS: A lawsuit alleging that Republican-affiliated groups falsely accused some North Carolinians of voter fraud is one step closer to going to trial before a jury. The case centers on North Carolina’s 2016 gubernatorial election, when a Republican campaign tried a strategy much like the one former President Donald Trump has employed in claiming the 2020 election was stolen from him. After preliminary results showed then-Gov. Pat McCrory lost the 2016 election, lawyers affiliated with McCrory and other supporters of his campaign accused numerous North Carolina voters, by name, of having committed fraud. Those accusations were quickly proven false, and the voters sued for libel. McCrory himself wasn’t part of the lawsuit, but his supporters have fought it, claiming they’re immune from being sued for their false voter fraud accusations. When you name names, you better have your shit together.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article254771757.html

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