Back to blogging :-)

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ST Command Central.

ST Command Central.

After taking an unintentionally long hiatus, yours truly is back to blogging. :)

Last year saw a lot of changes for me on many fronts, and “real life” got a whole lot busier. And in the summer when the race for the NC US Senate seat between then-Senator Hagan and now-Senator Thom Tillis began to heat up, I had to make some choices to make and decided that my offline responsibilities and the Senate race would be my top priorities – so I didn’t get to blog much, as social media became my main front for getting the message out about Kay Hagan, the bias of the North Carolina press, and how important it was that North Carolina do its part in changing control of the US Senate. Thankfully, we did! In fact, Roll Call did a nice piece talking about how NC conservatives/activists really stepped up their Twitter game in the final weeks before the election, which may have helped carry Thom Tillis to victory.

Since the election, offline life has continued to be busy both personally and professionally, which kept me away not only from my site but social media as well. In fact, this weekend has been the first real “me time” breather I’ve had since the week of Christmas, and my goal as it has been for quite some time was to change the theme and make it a more “back to basics” type format where the content was the main focus, not all the links and fancy bells and whistles – which I don’t have time to maintain anymore, anyway. So the new them is “live” – and I hope everyone likes it. Still have a bit of tweaking to do here and there, but for the most part, this is how everything will look.

It will be nice to (slowly) get back into the blogging and social media groove, even though now it will be infrequent and not as often as I once could do. But what’s important – and you learn this once you don’t have the time on your hands you’d like to! – is the quality of content and not so much the quantity, although if you can go doth quantity AND quality, that’s a definite bonus! Also, I plan to expand my topic range to incorporate things I didn’t talk about much here before – things like fashion, movies, home decorating, and other topics of general interest that go beyond politics and current events. I feel like I limited myself a bit before, and don’t want to do that anymore.

As always, the one and only Phineas, who has been my co-blogger here for many years and who has done an outstanding job, is welcome to blog here whenever he wants to. The door is always open!

Thanks for listening/reading. :)

Announcing: Summer blog break

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NC Coast

Coastal NC. Photo taken by ST.

Hey y’all,

Just wanted to take a few minutes to let you know that, starting tomorrow, yours truly will be taking the next three weeks off from blogging as a bit of a “summer break.”  If anything super-hot breaks that I feel the urge to write about, I’ll check in but other than that I’ll be away from the blog. Phineas may post here and there but it will likely be light posting.   As much as we’d both like it to, our writing does not pay the bills so we have offline responsibilities that must take priority. Because of that, sometimes the amount of content here isn’t what we’d like it to be.

I’ll be using my time away from the blog to, in part, consider its creative direction, and its future.  I’ve been blogging consistently since October 2003, and while  I appreciate loyal readers who keep coming back, readership is not growing, and it needs to grow if I want this to be a successful blog that generates ad revenue and tip jar contributions that can help me sustain it and perhaps one day turn it into something I can do on a more regular basis.

All that being said, I will not be totally off the radar. You can still catch me daily on social media (my Twitter / Facebook / Phineas’ Twitter account). For the time being, it’s just easier for me to partake in social media posting and commentary than it is for me to blog during the week.

Anyone who needs to contact me can do so via social media, or via the “contact” link at the top of this page.  I appreciate, in advance, your understanding. Later, gators. :)

Weekend Open Thread/Tip Jar Request

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Tip Jar

Hey y’all.

Got a lot on my plate this weekend but wanted to send a quick note to let you know there will likely be some changes soon which may allow me more time to blog than I’ve had in the last couple of years.  I’ve really struggled over that time to balance personal responsibilities with my number one passions – political/pop culture writing both here and on social media, and  found that with my schedule the way it is that social media sites like Twitter and Facebook allowed for more “real time” information sharing than the blog.

In the coming weeks and months I am going to make a concerted effort to push more content on the blog, because as much as I love social media, oftentimes 140 characters to use to write with just isn’t enough space. ;)

Because eventually I’d like to turn writing into my livelihood, I need the funds to write, to keep the blog going, to pay for hosting, design and re-design efforts, and everyday expenses.  Plus, I’d like to also start paying my awesome co-blogger! I’ve had a PayPal account for years that I’ve rarely made appeals to contribute to, but now I am.

In addition to the PayPal account, I’ve also generated a “Go Fund Me” account (both links are now posted in the upper right side column on this page), and have set a goal there of $5,000.  This will be an ongoing effort, but my goal is to have this money raised in a month’s time.  If you support this blog and know others who do, please contribute via the PayPal or Go Fund Me links and make sure to share them on your Twitter and Facebook pages. I really appreciate the support already given but more is always encouraged and very much appreciated. Thank you!

Comments issue

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Technical difficulties

Dern it …

Hey y’all,

No idea what’s going on but all of the comments to the site have completely disappeared, and when you try to comment on current posts, it comes up that you can’t. We are working to get this issue resolved. Sorry for any inconveniences!!

Update – 5:50 PM: Problem fixed! Had to repair the database …. #FirstWorldProblems

Happy belated 10 year blogiversary to the ST blog – and @EdMorrissey, too :-)

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Blogiversary

Hooray!

Reposting a slightly edited version of last year’s message (written on 10-3-12) … because I still feel the same!  Mega-thanks for the continued support! –ST

Ten years* of taking it to the left, their allies in the mainstream media, and sometimes taking my own “side” to task when I’ve found it necessary. And still going strong.

Thanks to you, my dear readers, I am still here today – doing what I love to do. Whether I have 10 readers or 100,000, this is my passion & I will continue to share my opinions on all kinds of issues until God decides it’s my time.

It’s funny – whenever I feel burned out on writing, usually the far left does something stupid or outrageous that causes the fire inside me to burn all over again. And then it’s on. Again.

These days due to “real life” commitments I have more time to micro-blog on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook than I do long-form blogging, but either way, it’s information sharing, it’s debating, it’s calling out politicians and the MSM when they go astray, when they misrepresent, when they lie, when they do something good – all in the name of keeping them both accountable for what they say and what they do. Because a well-informed (not MIS-informed) Republic is the best kind.

Would like to give a couple of extra big shout outs to two people: my co-blogger Phineas, who has done an outstanding job here for over three years (I think?) as my co-blogger (he tweets here). His help has been invaluable to me and his contributions to this blog have brought more readers here and to his own site as well. And also, big props to fellow blogger Ed Morrissey of Hot Air fame, who also shares the same year and day blogiversary that I do. Ed started out at Captain’s Quarters doing his own blog thing, but his writing was so thoughtful and his manner of getting his points across so engaging with his readers that it wasn’t long before he started writing for some pretty important conservative publications before eventually landing a nice gig at Hot Air where he has been for several years now. The blogosphere is a better place because Ed’s in it and he continues to inspire many up and coming conservative writers to be the best they can be. Thanks for all you do, Ed.

Here’s to many more years of us giving the left hell. Cheers! : )

*I actually dabbled in blogging before October 2003, but October 2003 is when I first started blogging on a consistent, daily basis so that’s when I consider my official anniversary to be.*

Creative Loafing CLT honors ST w/ backhanded compliment in Best of 2012 issue :)

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Most of this has already been said about me before, but never quite so – er, artfully:

    MEDIA

BEST LOCAL TWITTER HANDLE EVEN THOUGH WE’RE AWARE THAT PRETTY MUCH EVERYTHING SHE TWEETS AND RE-TWEETS IS PURE, UNADULTERATED BULLSHIT

Sister Toldjah

She’s bold, that’s for sure. Her handle is a play on Sista Souljah, an African-American rapper and radical political activist of the ’90s who couldn’t be any more different from Ms. Toldjah, who is a blonde, self-described “genuine conservative Southern belle born in the wrong era.” We don’t know exactly what era the Sister thinks she should have been born in, but we suspect it must be the era of Watergate, white-only country clubs, closeted gays and Betty Crocker housewives. Her tweets are defiantly, self-righteously and mean-spiritedly anti-women, anti-gay, anti-science, anti-liberal — and yet she benefits from the landmark work all of those groups have done to make her and her country stronger. Oh, but she’s pro-liar (see her link to Breitbart.com). A typical Toldjah tweet: “[Feminists] are a disgrace to classy yet passionate debate.” You, uh … go, girl. No, really. Go.

Aww, shucks – I am so feeling the love from that one, CL. Thank you. Thank you very much. :)

And a photo, just for preservation purposes:

Thanks, Creative Loafing!

I should note for out of state peeps that Creative Loafing Charlotte, a supporter of the Occupy movement, is the top “alternative/independent” newspaper in the Charlotte area and – naturally – being “alternative” and “independent” it swings wildly to the left, because to mags like CL, reliably liberal local newspapers like the Charlotte Observer just aren’t left-wing enough to suit their tastes …

It’s funny. In my younger days when I was a liberal I’d walk into a restaurant and see that they had posted their “Best of Creative Loafing” awards prominently for patrons to see, and I’d think to myself “I’d love to have something like that posted in my (future) place of business.” It was (and still is) a badge of honor for local businesses to receive their stamp of approval (CL makes their picks, and then their readers get to make their picks as well). On the flip side, when you get a backhanded “compliment” from them – such as the case it was with me – it can still be an honor.

Their “best of” honorable mention of me is one I accept without hesitation. If they’d actually praised me, I’d be worried – and you would be, too.

Will this be framed and posted in my home office? You betcha! It will serve as a reminder to me everyday of just how much I get under the left’s skin, and just how much so many of them despise actual independent thought, and just how wrong liberals are when it comes to who they think I “owe” my freedoms to as a woman. Newsflash: It’s not radical “feminists” aka current-day far left “womyn” who think with their girlie parts and who hypocritically preach hate against men. It’s with the First Wave feminists of old who fought for the right to vote, equal pay, a voice at the table – the right to be judged by who we are as human beings, not based solely on our sex. These women would be ashamed of modern-day “feminists”, their despicable “all about ME!!” narcissism and their attempts at defining women by stupidly dressing up as vaginas, and/or calling themselves “sluts.” Today’s feminists are an affront to real feminism everywhere, and as long as the Lord allows me to continue to breathe and to continue to have a functioning brain, I will fight this harmful, dangerous, irresponsible, backwards, toxic form of feminism every.single.day.of.the.week.

You can count on it. You can also count on me standing shoulder to shoulder with conservative black people, gays, and other conservative minorities who REFUSE to view themselves as “victims of society.” If you think I receive a lot of hate and flack for what I say, you should see what they have to put up with as “traitors” to their race/sexual orientation, etc. It is awful. INTOLERANT. Not “big tent liberalism” in any way, shape, form, or fashion.

As an interesting side note, not quite a year ago I received an email from a CL Editor who had seen my Occupy Charlotte commentary, was impressed, and wanted me to write for Creative Loafing. I never responded. Guess I’ve fallen out of favor with them jut a bit since then, hmm? ;;)

Related: Very kind words from fellow Charlotte blogger Savvanah.

Happy Blogiversary to the ST blog – and to @EdMorrissey as well!

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Nine years* of taking it to the left, their allies in the mainstream media, and sometimes taking my own “side” to task when I’ve found it necessary. And still going strong.

Thanks to you, my dear readers, I am still here today – doing what I love to do. Whether I have 10 readers or 100,000, this is my passion & I will continue to share my opinions on all kinds of issues until God decides it’s my time.

It’s funny – whenever I feel burned out on writing, usually the far left does something stupid or outrageous that causes the fire inside me to burn all over again. And then it’s on. Again.

These days due to work commitments I have more time to micro-blog on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook than I do long-form blogging, but either way, it’s information sharing, it’s debating, it’s calling out politicians and the MSM when they go astray, when they misrepresent, when they lie, when they do something good – all in the name of keeping them both accountable for what they say and what they do. Because a well-informed (not MIS-informed) Republic is the best kind.

Would like to give a couple of extra big shout outs to two people: my co-blogger Phineas, who has done an outstanding job here for over a year (or has it been over two??) as my co-blogger – who has been a monster on the Fast and Furious issue (and we all love him for it). His help has been invaluable to me and his contributions to this blog have brought more readers here and to his own site as well. And also, big props to fellow blogger Ed Morrissey of Hot Air fame, who also shares the same year and day blogiversary that I do. Ed started out at Captain’s Quarters doing his own blog thing, but his writing was so thoughtful and his manner of getting his points across so engaging with his readers that it wasn’t long before he started writing for some pretty important conservative publications before eventually landing a nice gig at Hot Air where he has been for several years now. The blogosphere is a better place because Ed’s in it and he continues to inspire many up and coming conservative writers to be the best they can be. Thanks for all you do, Ed.

Here’s to many more years of us giving the left hell. Cheers! : )

*I actually dabbled in blogging before October 2003, but October 2003 is when I first started blogging on a consistent, daily basis so that’s when I consider my official anniversary to be.?

If it’s a “Right-Wing Freak Out,” I’m in great company

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**Posted by Phineas

Hah! Found out last night that Your Humble Correspondent, cross-posting at Sister Toldjah’s site on the administration’s invocation of executive privilege with regard to Operation Fast and Furious, was cited briefly on MSNBC’s “The Ed Show,” hosted by the ever-genteel Ed Schultz. Here’s the screen cap:

 

(Click for a larger size)

And this is the post to which they’re referring.

So, in the past I’ve been called “insensitive” and “ignorant,” but this is way cool. To be in the same company as those other rabid right-wingers above is… is… *sniff!* That’s the nicest thing a left-wing tool has ever said to me. 

Thanks, Ed! You’re the best!

[Screen cap courtesy of AI Politics, hat tip ST]

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

The most important word you’ll learn in the #BrettKimberlin saga: “Lawfare”

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First, the latest developments in the Brett Kimberlin campaign of “legal” terror that I wrote to you about last week – via Kimberlin target Stacy McCain:

Aaron Walker, whose complaint against convicted terrorist Brett Kimberlin became a conservative cause célèbre this past week, was reportedly taken into custody today after a court hearing in Rockville, Maryland.

One person who attended the hearing in Montgomery County District Court said that Kimberlin asserted that Walker’s continued blogging represented a violation of a “peace order” Kimberlin had obtained against the Virginia attorney, who says Kimberlin tried to “frame” him for assault earlier this year.

During the course of the hearing — which reportedly lasted about an hour — Judge C.J. Vaughey appeared to become increasingly hostile toward Walker, who was taken into custody when the hearing concluded.

Walker has since been released, but please make sure to read Stacy’s full post for the short version on what happened today, and on how one of Kimberlin’s chief targets – Walker (the true victim) – had the tables turned on him in court and eventually was arrested (why? more here). Doesn’t sound like Aaron did himself any favors with the judge, but the judge himself, who admittedly didn’t know much about the Internet, was probably the last judge a Kimberlin victim would want hearing his or her case – especially since much of it revolves around cyber-stalking/threats — Anonymous-style.

Kimberlin, a convicted domestic terrorist, is shamelessly abusing the legal system in an attempt to silence truthful critics in what law blogger Popehat appropriately calls “lawfare”:

3. Aaron’s arrest illustrates how well lawfare can work and how dangerous unprincipled rubber-stamping of protective orders can be. Imagine it: you write something about a dispute. Someone involved in that dispute goes to court in another state and accuses you of harassment and gets a “peace order” against you. That person claims that your writing is threatening, that it has led to threats, or that it constitutes persistent harassment. If you are very lucky, the judge denies the application because it is too vague, or because it seems to complain about protected speech — but if you are unlucky, the judge rubber-stamps it without even demanding to see the allegedly offending posts. (Note that here Kimberlin characterized Aaron’s posts, rather than submitting them all.) Now you’ve got a vague order against you forbidding you from contacting or harassing the “victim.” But what does that mean? Surely, you tell yourself, under a century of America’s First Amendment heritage, it doesn’t mean I can’t write a blog post discussing the dispute and explaining why the peace order application is made by a convicted perjurer and notorious domestic terrorist. Well — maybe. Or maybe not. Again, it depends upon your luck with the judge. Here, based at least on initial reports, it appears that the court construed Aaron’s blog as a violation of the peace order. I’ve read all of Aaron’s posts on the subject, and none satisfy any principled or constitutional definition of unlawful harassment. None of them incited lawless behavior. If, as reports indicate, the judge jailed Aaron based on those posts, the judge did so lawlessly because Aaron violated a vague and ambiguous prior restraint on protected speech.

4. Kimberlin’s success in this regard will embolden other practitioners of lawfare, and allow them to chill and deter speech they don’t like. Consider Aaron’s dilemma upon being informed of the new and overtly bogus peace order: was he to cease speaking on an issue of public interest regarding a public figure, or was he to spend money on a lawyer to try to get the order lifted? Now imagine lawfare practitioners demanding such protective orders in multiple jurisdictions far from the writer. Imagine the costs and legal risks, and ask yourself how many people will be willing to incur them.

It’s insane.  But it’s the world we live in.  And while Popehat, like Walker and Patterico, have encouraged people to not be partisan about this issue because it can impact all speech both left and right, and because liberals have also been targets of Kimberlin, I find it hard not to inject partisanship in this considering the tactics Kimberlin and his allies are using have all the hallmarks of radical Occupy/Anonymous cyberterrorism/intimidation which they, of course support and are affiliated with. Nothing comparable exists on the right. Nothing.

Unfortunately this is going to get worse before it (hopefully) gets better.   If you haven’t already, please donate to show your support of Walker, Patterico, Liberty_Chick, and others who continue to be harassed by way of  “lawfare” by associates of Brett Kimberlin.  This issue is too critical to our free speech rights to allow to fall by the wayside.

Standing in support of writers personally targeted by #BrettKimberlin (REPOSTING)

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NOTE: Today is Blog about Brett Kimberlin Day, initiated to show support to bloggers, lawyers, and others on the right and left who have been viciously targeted by both Brett Kimberlin and his merry band of AnonyThugs who are using the First Amendment as a harassment tool against “enemies” of convicted domestic terrorist aka “Speedway Bomber” Brett Kimberlin.  I wrote my original post a couple of days ago, and since then blogger Patterico has written a detailed account, published today, of some of what he, his family, his employer, and fellow bloggers/friends/associates have had to go through at the hands of thugs like Brett Kimberlin and supporters. READ IT when you’ve got a few minutes.  You’ll see that both conservatives and liberals alike were targeted – the liberals because they refused to play along with Kimberlin’s disgusting tactics and game-playing.  

When done, please make sure to donate to the National Bloggers Club’s fund for Patterico, Aaron Walker, and others who have been victims of vile, vicious PERSONAL harassment, stalking, intimidation and bullying to the point some of them were fired from their jobs or continue to be harassed at the one they have.  These people also have reason to fear for their lives.   Also, check the trackbacks to this post for other bloggers who are writing about Brett Kimberlin, and Michelle Malkin’s post as she is keeping a running update of those who are blogging about him.   Also, if you DON’T blog but Tweet, make sure to use the hashtag #BrettKimberlin in your tweets so it can become a trending topic on Twitter. Thank you.
Free Speech ZoneWhen you get into the business of writing about politics and current events, whether you do it for the love of it, the money, or both, you set yourself up for being a target of your political opposition.  It is the nature of the beast. Most of the time  if the opposition isn’t trying to counter your points respectfully,  they’ll just laugh at you and/or call you nasty names over a period of time and move on. Other times they won’t move on, but they won’t carry it any further than just online word wars. But there are also cases where it can escalate way beyond that into territory it never should – where people’s families, homes, and livelihoods are directly targeted, threatened, and negatively impacted by thugs who have absolutely no concept of what “freedom of speech” means, and who believe there are no boundaries/limits whatsoever that they shouldn’t be allowed to cross in trying to “shame” those who they oppose.  Such is the case with Brett Kimberlin, a despicable human being who has waged a disgusting campaign of legal terror and abuse against conservatives who write truthful articles about him and his domestic terrorism past.   The man is vile. Absolutely vile:

Over the past year, Aaron Walker (who blogged as “Aaron Worthing”)PattericoLiberty Chick, and now Stacy McCain have been targeted by convicted Speedway bomber Brett Kimberlin because they dared to mention his criminal past or assisted others who did. The late Andrew Breitbart warned about Kimberlin and company.

I have spoken directly with both Patterico and Aaron about their ongoing battles.

The mainstream press, not just the conservative blogosphere, needs to hear and report their stories.

This is a convoluted, ongoing nightmare that combines abuse of the court system, workplace intimidation, serial invasions of privacy, perjury, and harassment of family members. McCain was forced to move with his family out of his house this week, and has just gotten a small taste of what Aaron and Patterico have been enduring over the past year. Aaron and his wife were fired from their jobs after their employer feared the office would be targeted next. Convicted bomber Kimberlin has filed bogus “peace orders” against Aaron, when it is the Walkers who are the victims, not the perpetrators.

And Patterico’s plight will send chills up your spine when he is ready to tell it.

Institutional inertia, incompetence, and apathy among law enforcement officials on both coasts have exacerbated the victims’ suffering. It has moved far beyond a partisan or political story to a bottomless, Kafka-esque morass. And, via investigative journalist Matthew Vadum, it certainly doesn’t help that “progressive,” left-wing foundations that have funded Kimberlin continue to look the other way.

Ted Frank at Point of Law summed it up: “A scary tale of what can go wrong if one makes the wrong enemy of someone willing to persistently abuse the civil and criminal legal system, and how poorly the legal system protects those victims.”

Please read Michelle’s full post for background on what Walker and others targeted by Kimerblin have gone through.

Regarding the “peace orders”, Patterico points out:

It is beyond the scope of this post to detail every way in which Kimberlin’s peace order is misleading and deceptive. Kimberlin complains that Aaron spoke of purchasing a gun, implying that Aaron’s statement was aggressive — when Aaron actually said he had bought a gun to defend himself. Kimberlin claims that Aaron is responsible for “alerts” coming to his email inbox, suggesting Aaron is emailing him, when in fact the “alerts” Kimberlin is talking about are Google alerts. If you write about this guy on the Internet, he may run to a judge and say you are causing abusive alerts to come to his email.

You might say: what’s the harm in getting a peace order? I have watched this play out in other venues and I know just what Kimberlin is up to. As soon as he gets a “peace order,” he will run back to court the very next time Aaron mentions his name in public. That means that Kimberlin asserts the right to abuse the court process to harass Aaron — and if Aaron tells the world how Kimberlin is abusing the court process, Kimberlin will claim that as a violation of the peace order and try to have Aaron held in contempt of court.

Kimberlin and his crew have relentlessly harassed Aaron, me, and others over the course of the last several months. It is not harassment for us to tell the world what happened to us. It could happen to any of you. His supporters have outed or threatened to out commenters to this very site. They talk about wives, children, and fathers of bloggers and commenters. They ceaselessly abuse everyone they can who speaks the truth about Kimberlin’s past.

Ultimately, this is a free speech issue. Kimberlin and his group of thugs have done their level best to attack everyone in the blogosphere who wrote anything negative about him. Now the blogosphere is starting to wake up, and there are so many critics he can’t possibly intimidate them all.

I can’t wait to hear Patterico’s full story.  In the meantime, would you hit Stacy McCain’s tip jar? He and his family could sure use the assistance right now.  And prayers, too.

Friday, by the way, is “Everybody Blog About Brett Kimberlin” day – Lee Stranahan explains:

Here’s what you do to take part…

  1. Research Brett Kimberlin on your own. Don’t trust secondary sources; look for the orginal articles articles published about him, too.
  2. On Friday, May 25th — write an honest, factually accurate post about what you learned and what your OPINION is. Brett may try and sue you, so be accurate, factual and separate fact from opinion.
  3. The post doesn’t have to be long — ANYTHING helps.
  4. After you post, Tweet, share, whatever — get the post out there.

I know many of you don’t blog, but don’t worry – it really doesn’t have to be a post at all: Tweet about him, write about him on Facebook, post in comment threads and on message boards. I’m using the hashtag #BrettKimberlin at Twitter because no one has indicated otherwise about any other hashtag.   Why do we need to do this? Because not only do we need to support our fellow conservatives, but it is also IMPERATIVE that we show Kimberlin via our words that we will NOT be intimidated by his bull sh*t attempts to squelch free speech.

Are y’all with me?