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Old 09-03-2013, 09:06   #26
kahrcarrier
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Yep.
Outside, nearly all day, nearly every day. My single speed American Flyer rocked!

Daytime television was soaps, divorce courts, queen for a day, etc. It was BAD. Might catch an old horror film, or Dark Shadows after 3:00 p.m. If you were lucky. And MOM had to approve the programming, and she was very anti scary stuff and shoot-em-ups.

And with no air conditioning, outside was just as good as inside. We kids were in charge of weeding the garden, mowing the lawn, fixing supper when we got old enough.

Yes. There are a lot of things I DO NOT miss, but: I do think we were a little tougher and more resourceful than kids today. And we were total wusses compared to what our parent experienced and endured...... The Depression, W.W. 2, etc.

Different times, different people.
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Old 09-03-2013, 09:11   #27
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My Dad said he swam the river both ways, three times a day to go to school. It was faster than hiking to the RR trestle.
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Old 09-03-2013, 09:19   #28
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I walked to grade school for 7 years (K-6), it was roughly a mile both ways. Took about 15 minutes or so, not a big deal. You wore a raincoat if it was raining, there was a place for them and your boots in the classroom. We didn't start moving around between classrooms until 5th grade or so. The only time my parents picked me up from school was when I had a doctor/dentist appointment. Oh, and that time in 2nd grade when Jeff Mason knocked out my brand-new permanent front tooth playing flag football at recess.

Then I had to start taking the bus in 7th grade on until I turned 16. That. Sucked. Walking was much better. If it snowed, well, that was the best. Usually school would be cancelled and nothing but nothing beat a snow day. We'd build big snow forts and have knockdown dragout snow ball fights with 20-30 kids. You'd run inside to get dry gloves/mittens/socks, grab a baloney sandwich on the way out the door, and it never really seemed all that cold.
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Old 09-03-2013, 09:28   #29
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At least you didn't have one of those metro tall-people-blinding umbrellas, CC.


Wintertime grade school coat rooms awash in rubber boots and the bread bags we covered our feet in to put them on. Ahhhh. Those were the days.
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Old 09-03-2013, 09:57   #30
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I am not even middle age yet and I spent most all day outside. I grew up in a very rural area, on a large farm with no neighbors, plus I was an only child.

We only had 4 or 5 channels on a good day and what was on during the day sucked. I played basketball by myself, rode horses and 4 wheelers and hunted the crap out of pigeons with a BB gun. When it was around dinner time, my mother would let our dog out and when I saw him running around, I knew it was time to head back towards the house.

Also, the comment about no air conditioning is very true, when it is the same temp inside and out, you might as well go out. I believe I was around 10 when we got AC.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:03   #31
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I love AC, but there was something about jumping into the above-ground pool at 10pm right before bed. Your wet head hitting the pillow. Just a complete cool feeling on your body and you could sleep through those hot hot nights.

I don't know how my dad got up the next day and put on a suit and tie. Ugh.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:10   #32
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Yes being a younger guy older people always tell me how my stuff is bad and what they used to do, and it seems like there looking back through a filter.

I always love the "we weren't playing video games we were outside every day all the time." Then i bring up what they did during downpours, blizzards, ice storms and other greatest hits of the northeast's bipolar weather, they say they still went out. Then I ask them their favorite T.V. shows were and they name a million, so obviously they were inside watching tv not playing outside.

Or the we walked everywhere uphill both ways nosnsense. Busses existed if you lived in a city.

Whats your favorite things you were told.?
Your problem is your own filter.

I'm 48, and I was outside from early light till dark 90% of the time during summer months. After school same thing or sports. TV? Yeah all three channels you could get on rabbit ears.

And I did ride my bike or walk to school during my elementary and junior high days.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:20   #33
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For a few years, until we moved from Normal, IL to Joplin, MO, we had cable TV. This was back in the late 60's/early 70's and may have been among the very first cable TV systems in the USA. It wasn't much, only about 12 channels, but you got a good picture on all the channels. I can't remember what was on the non-network channels back then, probably a bunch of infomercials and local (the the Chicago metro area) programming. Pretty sure the cable company was based in Chicago and reached all the way past Bloomington/Normal.

This is back when shows like I Dream of Jeannie, Gilligan's Island, and Star Trek were regular network shows coming on in prime time. I remember that after Star Trek, Bonanza came on and I hated that show but my parents liked it. The Wonderful World of Disney and Mutual Omaha's Wild Kingdom were big deals, along with Andy Griffith, Red Skelton, Jackie Gleason, and the Ed Sullivan Show.

I remember watching some of the Watergate hearings live at my grandparent's house. Had no idea what was going on.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:22   #34
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Reminds me of what an older man who worked for my dad for MANY years used to say.

"The ONLY thing GOOD about the good ol' days is we was younger!"
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:24   #35
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Sounds like Diesel McBadass might learn something today.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:30   #36
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What TV?

Back in the day I would talk to grandpa about his experiences in the Spanish-American War.

During grammar school I would go home at lunchtime to shovel coal into the boiler in the basement. Ran thru 2 tons per month in the winter.

I remember the Mack trucks with solid wheels and chain drive. I remember railroad steam engines.

Yes, even found time to play outside in inclement weather.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:40   #37
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In my younger days, a lot more people seemed to say "please" and "thank you.

Kids were "kids" and not expected to be treated like adults.

"Because I said so" was a good enough reason to do whatever what Dad said without hesitation.

I never even thought for a moment about being abducted and molested by a neighbor.

Store clerks could make change and treat you like a customer rather than an annoyance.

Neighbors would watch out for other neighbors kids and help those that may need help, or take a straying toddler who "escaped" from home instead of calling the cops on the parents.

It was OK to ride in the front seat with dad instead of being strapped into a chair in the back seat.

Dad could even smoke in the car with 7 kids stacked in the back of the station wagon.

Dad could dope slap one of us kids if we got out of hand in public and nobody called the cops on him.

Mom could do the same....and then Dad would do it again when we got home and she told him we were acting up.

It was OK to have a jack knife in your pocket at school. It was also OK to play "Cops and Robbers" during recess in grade school.

It was OK to wear "hand-me-downs", and most kids in my school with older siblings did so.


I don't blame technology for the changes I don't like in these present times, but more what I see as a degradation of society in general.
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:47   #38
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ahh, you young whippersnappers with your fancy televisions......and wearing shoes in the summer.....
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:54   #39
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I'm 75 so I've seen a lot of changes over the years that young people can't even imagine.


In a nut shell........
Such as medicine, transportation, the computer age, etc, is amazing and makes life so much better and easier than when I was a kid.

What has changed is the people.
People really suck now days.
People have always sucked. The difference is that back in the day, a person's word and reputation was sacred and one was held accountable. You said you'd do something? You darn well better do it or you'd become "that guy". Everybody knew who was the junkie, who was the whore, etc. Those people were pariahs and had to work at rehabilitating their image.

Not so today. Today your reputation is made by thuggery, abuse, embezzlement and personal gain. Saying you'll do something and not doing it has no negative consequences. Standards have changed and what was once frowned upon is now celebrated. Wanna be a successful politician? Send pics of you weiner to random women, whatever it takes to get into that 24 hour news cycle. A video of you twerking will get you paid!
Can any of us imagine Ike getting a BJ from an intern in the Oval Office, much less getting away with it after it was confirmed?


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Old 09-03-2013, 11:00   #40
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I turn 50 this month and I can relate to much that has been posted from others my age.

We NEVER had air conditioning. I remember thinking it was a big relief when you walked into a classroom and the teacher had brought their own box fan from home and had it running. I don't ever remember school letting out early due to the heat. My kid is in the 6th grade and their school is air conditioned and they're sent home early due to the heat on some days?

We played outside. We were often supervised by other adults from the neighborhood and we listened to them. I rode a single speed Schwinn Stingray until I outgrew it. I left it behind the car and my mom backed over it. The handle bars were never the same and were bent but I could still ride it. That was a good thing because I wasn't getting another one!

I wouldn't trade my time for what kids have now. I am glad we didn't have a thousand channels on TV, cell phones, hand-held electronic devices, video games, etc.

In fact, I wish we didn't have them now.
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Old 09-03-2013, 11:06   #41
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People have always sucked. The difference is that back in the day, a person's word and reputation was sacred and one was held accountable. You said you'd do something? You darn well better do it or you'd become "that guy". Everybody knew who was the junkie, who was the whore, etc. Those people were pariahs and had to work at rehabilitating their image.

Not so today. Today your reputation is made by thuggery, abuse, embezzlement and personal gain. Saying you'll do something and not doing it has no negative consequences. Standards have changed and what was once frowned upon is now celebrated. Wanna be a successful politician? Send pics of you weiner to random women, whatever it takes to get into that 24 hour news cycle. A video of you twerking will get you paid!
Can any of us imagine Ike getting a BJ from an intern in the Oval Office, much less getting away with it after it was confirmed?
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Think he was more successful after he got caught doing that than before? He was going to walk into being the mayor before, now he will be lucky to finish 4th in what is in reality a 4 way primary.
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Old 09-03-2013, 11:07   #42
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There was no air conditioning at any school I attended except for my 7th grade year, the last year I lived in Illinois, my middle school was brand new and had it. Well, eventually we had it in most rooms in college. I remember in my 10th grade English class it was my job to go out to the teacher's car and get the two box fans before class. Nowadays you'd probably be gang-tackled for leaving the school without a pass.
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Old 09-03-2013, 11:33   #43
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Think he was more successful after he got caught doing that than before? He was going to walk into being the mayor before, now he will be lucky to finish 4th in what is in reality a 4 way primary.
You're right, I could have worded that better.
What I meant to say was that; despite sexting and getting caught, he was well on his way to becoming mayor of NY. Within a short time, relatively. Do you think that behavior pattern would have helped him in the mayoral race, which is a popularity contest anyway, in the '50's for example?

The first scandal actually made him popular. Would half the country even know his name had that not happened? He went overboard and embarrassed Hillary's personal secretary one time too many and that is what sunk him in the mayoral race. However, his name is much more well known now and he can still leverage that popularity to his advantage, maybe not in the political arena... Yet.

The point of my post was that in the past, a person had to safeguard his/her reputation and keep his/her word if one wanted to succeed. Today it is the opposite.
In effect; people have always sucked, but in the past one had to fight those urges, today it is beneficial to act out on your "suckiness" like never before.


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Old 09-03-2013, 11:42   #44
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. . . may have been among the very first cable TV systems in the USA.
Easton, MA. We were one of the last. 30,000 residents. It was 1985 or so when we finally got a cable company to string us up a line. Of course, the town morons, er, Selectmen had something to do with that. They wanted more concessions and delayed things for a few years.

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Sounds like Diesel McBadass might learn something today.
It may look like we are piling on, but we are more just reminiscing. He'll be Diesel McHumbleass by 6pm. LOL

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My kid is in the 6th grade and their school is air conditioned and they're sent home early due to the heat on some days?
We've broken once for too-cold temps. I think it was -13 one day about 8 years ago. They closed the schools in the AO because they feared kids getting damaged at the bus stops.

Any time a school system closes for too-hot (which is almost as rare), it has zero to do with kids-comfort and 100% to do with they don't want to waste the electricity on running the A/C, lights, etc., during a possible brown-out.
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Old 09-03-2013, 11:49   #45
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Well, my Mom grew up with two alchoholic parents about 30 miles outside of a town of (at the time) about 800 and lived in a home my Grandfather built with hand-tools and had no electricity...

So she had some dooozies for stories of what she enjoyed in her childhood. One of which was putting her feet in warm cow patties to get them warm.

My Father was born into a military family and both his parents were killed when he was 3. He was raised by his Grandfather who was an alchoholic farmer... so he worked until he was 12, at which time he got on a bus and went to Chicago to get a job and away from his Grandfather's hand.

My Dad wasn't much for talking about what it was like for him growing up -- but I have no doubt it wasn't fun.


Needless to say, there was no alchohol in my home growing up. I didn't hear a lot about how rough my parents had it growing up -- people who truly had it bad, in my experience, seem more focused on providing better for the ones they love.

Even the stories my Mom told me about how bad she had it -- she told in a way that was positive. Such as the cow patties thing, in her mind -- that was truly something she enjoyed. To me, though, it's sad that your best memories of childhoold involve putting your freezing feet in cow crap because your drunk parents can't be bothered to put cut wood and heat your home.

Not to mention the fact she just didn't have shoes unless someone else gave them to her. Having two kids of my own -- I know just how long shoes last. Not just from wear, but growth.




So, nah, I don't begrudge those who tell their 'back in my day' storeis. Often times, they are not meant to be negative.

Like, back in my day -- there was no internet. But, to me -- that brings out a lot of great memories. I may only SAY there was no internet -- but inside my mind, I'm thinking about modem to modem games with my cousin -- that my Dad and his Dad setup. So you might see that as negative, but my mind is racing with fond memories.
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Old 09-03-2013, 11:49   #46
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"TV? Yeah all three channels you could get on rabbit ears."

We got 3 channels, too. We watched what my parents wanted to watch, except for Saturday morning cartoons.

My father was born in 1922 on an apple orchard way back in the mountains. He lived 1.5 miles up a dirt road that followed the creek up into the hollow. His last 2 years of high school he had a job driving a school bus. They wouldn't let him take it up the dirt road to the house because of the 3 creek crossings and because the overhanging trees would have stripped the paint off it. He parked it at the church and walked home.

So he had to walk 1.5 miles both ways everyday just to get the bus to drive his route.

I only had to walk a half a mile to public school for 12 years.
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Old 09-03-2013, 12:00   #47
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I still go outside, just seems like the second you try to sit down the previous generation makes it seem they were outside all day everyday and never decided to relax indoors at all. Both sides exaggerate a lot. I just hate when im trying to relax and get told something rediculous.

And if its downpouring, basketball can wait.
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Old 09-03-2013, 12:08   #48
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Well....I think kids really do have it a lot easier nowadays..

Sorry this is so long, I started and just couldn't stop writing, brought back a lot of great memories..

I'M REALLY, REALLY TRYING TO BE OBJECTIVE HERE..because even in my 40's I still hear "back in my day" stories from older guys... and they can be irritating.

I'll tell you what I experienced, no exaggerations:

In my Kinder, 1st, 2nd 3rd grades, in Crofton, MD there were no buses for kids that lived within a certain radius, and I walked to school and home every day (by myself, mother confirmed it) approx 3/4 mile..down public residential streets and through alleys for shortcuts..not a big deal. In the rain, I had a rainsuit and hat, in the snow, I had cold winter clothes(seriously, mom even said during the blizzard of 1978, with 5' drifts still on the ground, I'd stop to play in the snow and be late for school and got in trouble on occasion). Who would let their kid do that nowadays? Who would let kids that age walk alone through neighborhoods and down public streets for that matter?

FYI.. I loved every minute of it..

Mom locked me out of the house every non school day shortly after breakfast and I had to bang on the door to get back in, still have a big scar where I sliced my arm open, banging frantically to be let in to go #2 and my arm went through the glass of the window and sliced me to the bone. I too was told to be home at sundown and that's what I did, with a reprieve for a sandwich for lunch if I remembered lunch or even cared.

FYI..Wouldn't have changed a thing..

4th through 7th grades..lived overseas in the Philippines and walked a short distance to school..with detours to the beach to do a little boogie or surfing before class when weather permits. Flipflops, tropical flowery shorts and OP tank tops was the school uniform..

God....how I miss you San Miguel RP Loved every second of it..

We had no tv in the PI, (not that I could understand in Tagalog anyway), and I wouldn't have been caught dead inside the house if it wasn't dark out. Even in Typhoon weather, I'd be soaking wet outside playing in the Typhoon if the winds weren't too vicious or at the beach catching really big waves from the storm. Got in trouble for this a few times actually..

8th - 12th..Lived 9 miles from school on hwy 90 in Florida. Mom confirms that I NEVER got a ride to school unless it was after a doctor's appt and she had to take me. "I pay taxes for schoolbuses, so you're gonna ride one" she'd say. Rode the bus always, until junior year at 16 1/2 or so yrs old. When I missed the bus, I was made to ride my bmx to school..and I did, rain or shine. No big deal unless it was raining, and I remember getting to school soaked to the bone, and being cold in the school's a/c. But you dry out eventually.

Great incentive to not drag ass and miss the bus!

Had one year where I had to go to summer school through the summer. Rode that bike rain or shine to summer school every day, didn't have a choice.

Great incentive not to goof off and get such bad grades that made you have to attend summer school.

Also remember the conversation with dad on my 16th bday after my surprise that I didn't get a car for my bday like some of my peers. "Get a job and earn a car" he said. I smarted off with "I need a car to go work..duh dad" and he replied "you ride that mountain bike all over god's creation on your free time, you can ride that mountain bike to work". So I did...and saved up enough to buy a Honda CB400 motorcycle and had my own wheels.

In my later teens, again, who'd want to be caught dead inside the house if you didn't have to? That's where mom was and she'd give you some chores or something if you hung around.

Sun-up to sunset, I was gone..and life was good..

About TV:

In my younger years (through 7th grade or so) the ONLY thing I was allowed to watch was Saturday morning cartoons, Gentle Ben, Flipper, My Three Sons and Leave it to Beaver and then the TV was turned OFF.

The ONLY evening program I could watch was on Sunday nights, "The Wonderful World of Walt Disney"...everything else was "garbage" I was told, and was forbidden. And yes, it all came off-the-airwaves.. Things changed when in 8th grade, I got a 5" black and white tv/stereo combo for christmas and I illegally watched late night tv under a blanket in my room when I was supposed to be sleeping, and developed a serious Hill Street Blues addiction..

About movies: Until I was in high school, I got to see only two movies at the theater, the original showings of the first Star Trek..and the original Poltergeist.

I feel like a bad parent writing this, but for contrast, my kids lives:

-rides to school with mom just because they don't feel like riding the bus, or it's embarrassing to ride the bus.
-They have never walked nor ridden a bike to school
-They don't own raincoats, umbrellas or cold weather gear and have never had a need for it, being shuttled in airconditioned comfort in a vehicle, everywhere they go
-9-zillion channels of DVR'd Satellite TV
-Movie nights at the theater at least once a month, and they've probably seen 50 or more recently released movies this year already on DVD or Netflix
-High speed internet with laptop and desktop computers, ipad for one kid and everything in their wildest imaginations from video games to music videos at the click of a mouse.
-I phones...I fought this tooth and nail with each of our three, stating that kids don't need phones, it just turns them into introverted little twits and I simply can't win with the wife. Her excuse is that "SHE needs to be able to find/reach them at all times"..and all 3 kids now have iphones..
-They expect and will recieve a car at 16 yrs old..

And when they're hanging out in the house all weekend, I'm out doing yardwork and my wife is working (home business) and they're up our asses because "it's too hot outside" and we have to repeatedly hear "I'm bored...there's nothing to do"...I just want to explode!
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Old 09-03-2013, 12:13   #49
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I taught high school history. Some kids would actually say they wish they lived in the "Olden" days. Meaning the 1920s to the 50s.

It is true that there were many wonderful things we have lost from those days. But there was also Polio, Cold War, McCarthyism, The Depression, WWII Etc.

Things change. Some bad, some good. But given the choice I would go forward, not backward.
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Old 09-03-2013, 12:17   #50
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Back in my day, we only had dial-up Internet. It took forever for videos to buffer.

I am obviously on the younger end of the spectrum. However, I was generally only in the house to eat and sleep when I was growing up. There was way too much to do outside. Things haven't completely changed for everyone. There are still parents who raise their kids right. There are still kids who love to experience things themselves, rather than experience things vicariously through TV and video games. We always reserved video games for the night or stormy days (except snow storms, of course).
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Thomas Paine: "...arms...discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property. ...Horrid mischief would ensue were (the law-abiding) deprived the use of them."
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Nov 11, 2013 at 11:42