Falling Awake

Just Darts Since 2009

Revisiting Charles Pinning

Last Veteran’s Day, a man named Charles Pinning wrote an opinion piece for the Providence Journal in support of John Kerry, who had just caused a stir by implying that US soldiers were stupid.  Pinning, unlike Kerry’s other defenders, didn’t make the argument that Kerry’s remarks were nothing but a botched joke.  He claimed that US soldiers are stupid, and that Kerry didn’t need to apologize for telling it like it is.

I wrote a response to Pinning here.

In the six months since, this site has been visited by many people googling the name “Charles Pinning.”  Now, I’m starting to feel bad.

Here’s why:

I was looking over that old post on Memorial Day, and I googled Mr. Pinning to see if he’s been up to anything lately.  He has:

A vocal critic of the Board of Parks Commissioners was arrested yesterday [May 8, 2007] after he continued to interrupt a board meeting at the Roger Williams Park Casino where a controversial plan for a dog park at the Dexter Training Ground was being discussed.

Charles Pinning of [address removed] was handcuffed and placed in a police cruiser. He was charged with disorderly conduct, simple assault and resisting arrest. No court date was available last night.

Why was he arrested?

Pinning, who has led the opposition to the dog park, presented a petition supposedly signed by 200 people supporting the continued presence of the ball field. When Pinning launched into a personal attack on a member of the audience, Mayor David N. Cicilline, who chairs the parks board , interrupted him and said, “I will not allow you to belittle a member of the city. It’s unfair.”

When another resident said that she would love to see the whole city become a dog park, Pinning jumped in and said, “Why don’t you gas the children!”

Apparently, things escalated from there.  It seems obvious now that this man is mentally ill–although it can be hard to tell with people on the left.  So, I’m wondering if I should take down my posts on Pinning.  I have a great deal of sympathy for mentally ill people, and if he ever googles himself (and who doesn’t, occasionally, when no one is looking?) he’ll find one of my posts attacking him rather high up in the results.

So, that’s my question.  Given that his original essay was just begging for a response, should I remove all reference to Mr. Pinning out of compassion?  But then again, maybe he’s not really mentally ill–just a leftist.  As I said, it’s often hard to tell.


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