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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Sunday, Oct. 26, 2014

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Calling the police gets old.
Calling the police gets old.

City living gets complicated

Three out of the last five weekends I have now been robbed. Not at gunpoint or anything. But my garage has been broken in to and they've made off with several items.

First it was two bikes, then a bike, then another couple of bikes. Nothing too serious and nothing too valuable. Each time the cops show up and take down the information and file a report.

I had one neighbor who found out about it who brought me a keyless alarm system to mount on my garage. Ostensibly if a burglar (or a deer or big cat or a homeless man) walks through the light beam an alarm will sound on the receiver next to my bed.

It seems like a lot of effort for something that may or may not work. And if it does, what am I supposed to do? Run out of the house in my PJs with a kids' baseball bat in my hand and challenge whoever is out there? Somehow that whole picture seems a little far-fetched.

These guys also help themselves to money. I keep a little container full of change in my car, easy to see and access. For me it's on the rare occasion that I think of plugging a parking meter. But for these guys, they manage to get the three or four bucks in change.

They used to break my window to get in, but I got sick of that so I leave my car unlocked so they can take the change but leave the windows alone. They never do any other damage.

The question, of course, is what to do short of moving to rural Waukesha County or farm house in Kenosha. I'm not moving. I love living in the city. And I'm not about to try and break the head of kids (and I'm pretty sure they are kids) who are up to mischief.

This one is a tough call.

Something's gotta change.
Something's gotta change.

We're shooting ourselves in the foot with current gun laws

So I'm thinking of heading out to buy myself a gun. I'm going to Gander Mountain or Ye Ol' Shooter Shoppe or Bullets and Babes. You know, one of those places where you can get the gun, a pocket full of ammo and maybe a pair of black shooting gloves. I'm just kidding of course.

What I'm trying to do is deal with the tragic shooting in Colorado as I listen to the NRA sycophants prattle on about how guns don't kill people but people kill people. I've heard it said that NRA stands for Neanderthal Redneck A**holes. I can't disagree.

This whole thing makes me sick to my stomach. Maybe I am a wuss.

I love our Constitution and I especially love all the amendments that gave women the right to vote, got rid of slavery and all that other good stuff. But that second amendment gives me pause. Not one of our founding fathers considered mass murder to be a factor in who ought to be able to have a gun. They wanted people to have flintlocks or blunderbusses to protect their houses against raiding armies.

The NRA is so powerful and has bought the souls of so many politicians, that it's hard to even get a good discussion going about gun control. Those well-armed guys and girls won't even brook a moment of logical or rational discussion.

Well, let me get back to me going to get a gun. I'm a grandfather and I look like a grandfather. If I go to buy a pistol they can run a background check and I'll come back clean. The guy behind the counter can be fairly sure that I'm not out to commit mass murder.

But when a guy buys four guns, including automatic weapons, and then buys 6,000 rounds of ammunition on the Internet, and he buys bullet proof clothing and a gas mask, well, the odds are that he ain't going out for target practice or even to shoot rabbits in his garden.

I know we face all kinds of obstacles when it comes to dealing with guns. But here's a simple solution that makes use of our technological abilities.

Every time a gun …

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Stardom isn't the reward for Ray Allen.
Stardom isn't the reward for Ray Allen.

Ray Allen: a class act

We are always looking to professional athletes to be role models for our children, and now we have one of the best ever.

Ray Allen might have been the best pure shooter the Milwaukee Bucks ever had, (sorry Jon McGlocklin). But we traded him and he took his fantastic skills to Seattle and then to Boston, where he won a title.

Then he signed as a free agent with the Miami Heat for almost exactly half the money he was offered by the Celtics. Of course when you are talking about the difference between $6 million and $3 million the comparison loses some of its drama.

But it's clear that Allen isn't playing for the money. He wants to win a title and has decided he has a better chance of that with the Heat, who won the title this year, than with the Celtics, who are aging a bit and probably out of the title conservation.

We should all tell our children about an athlete to whom it's more important to win than it is to be a star, and then we can sleep knowing we have helped teach them a valuable lesson.