Pete Souza: Life Through a Lens


President Barack Obama bends over so the son of a White House staff member can pat his head during a family visit to the Oval Office May 8, 2009. The youngster wanted to see if the President’s haircut felt like his own:


Jan. 20, 2009 – Pete Souza: “We were on a freight elevator headed to one of the Inaugural Balls. It was quite chilly, so the President removed his tuxedo jacket and put it over the shoulders of his wife. Then they had a semi-private moment as staff member and Secret Service agents tried not to look”:


Souza showed Obama a picture on the back of his camera from a friendly one-on-one game Obama played with presidential aide (and former Duke basketball player) Reggie Love. Obama, who was talking trash during the game, is seen leaping up to block a shot, looking great. Souza said when the president saw the photo, he told him, “I order you to make this a jumbo.” Before it was posted, the president had Love sign the print with a note complimenting the president on his block:

President Barack Obama blocks a shot while playing basketball with personal aide Reggie Love at St. Bartholomew’s Church in New York, Sept. 23, 2009. (Official White House photo by Pete Souza)


President Obama and First Lady Michelle watch Olympian Ryan Reser, in white, and Paralympian Myles Porter during a judo demonstration, part of the U.S. Olympians youth sporting event on the South Lawn of the White House, Sept. 16, 2009:


President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and senior staff, react in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, as the House passes the health care reform bill, March 21, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza):


Video clips from PBS’s ‘The President’s Photographer‘, 2010


And another beautiful photo from today:

President Barack Obama listens to cellist Khari Joyner, a 21-year-old Make-A-Wish recipient from Atlanta, Ga., in the Oval Office, Jan. 29 (Photo by Pete Souza)


Although, Pete Souza is not perfect – he made a mistake once:



Will catch up with news and stuff in the morning, it was just after today’s very gorgeous photo from Pete Souza in Las Vegas (see post below), I reckoned it was time for a little bit of a mini-tribute.



PS Need a pep talk?

246 Responses to “Pete Souza: Life Through a Lens”

  1. 12 hopefruit2
    January 29, 2013 at 8:02 pm

    YAY! I’m doing cartwheels…THANKS CHIPS!!! The genius that is Pete Souza!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • January 29, 2013 at 8:18 pm

      You gymnast you! 🙂

    • 14 cman
      January 29, 2013 at 8:33 pm

      I’m doing triple back flips. So cool. Is there a full video of this somewhere. I wanna see more!

      • January 29, 2013 at 8:34 pm

        Here you go Cman, meant to add the link to the post:


        • January 29, 2013 at 8:36 pm

          But be warned: Shrub and other creatures appear in it too!

        • January 29, 2013 at 9:29 pm

          I really like Pete Souza. I saw him at a campaign event here in Colorado. President Obama was going down the rope line, and pretty soon there was Pete Souza. I spoke out and said “Are you Pete Souza?” He acted surprised that I would know who he was. He said “Yes.” I told him “We see your wonderful work every day on The Obama Diary blog. I just love your work. Thank you.” He said “Thanks.” I was excited. After the healcare bill passed, President Obama came to an event here in Denver. Eight of us OFA volunteers who had organized and worked (making 100’s of calls) to get it passed, were asked to have our pictures taken with the President. I thought it would be a big group shot. Instead we each got to have an individual picture back stage with the President. It took for ever to get the picture. The White House Photography office had sent it to the Bennet campaign,but then who knows. I finally got up the nerve to call the White House and ask. They connected me with the Photography Office and then gave me an e-mail address to send my information ( date, event, what I was wearing, and a picture.) In one day they e-mailed me the picture with permission to make as many copies as I wanted! Well, that was more than anyone wanted to know. This post just brought it all back. This was just a memorable time in my life.

      • 18 hopefruit2
        January 29, 2013 at 8:39 pm

        LOL! I’m doing somersaults on beam and vault.

  2. 21 desertflower
    January 29, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    Pete Sousa. Amazing history in pictures. Huge thank you to him for being a genius in his craft and artform. History will be kind and thank you:)

  3. 22 desertflower
    January 29, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    If you haven’t seen PBS story on the President’s Photographer, you owe it to yourself to watch. Grab a cabbage salad, a glass of wine…and revel in the beauty of it all! For an added treat, Morgan Freeman narrates:)


  4. 27 carolmaewy
    January 29, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    I hope Pete Souza is staying another four years? I’ve spent a couple hours looking for my glasses, so need to catch up. I did hear the hecklers at the hearing. Why weren’t they thrown out? If you do that in any public meeting here, you are out.

  5. 32 wesleya17
    January 29, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Dear Chipsticks;
    This just to thanks a million for prayers and warm thoughts from everyone .I’m going to be down for a while with fighting lawyers and helping with the fund raising we had such high deductible to stay out of having to cut off special care for my sweetness . with sons trying to fight out on the road and in the office because we had to let some help go. the vultures had to of our contracts pulled. So the state of things just got a little worst I need more work on my knee ,but the Great News my sweetness is showing signs of recovery breathing better and some reaction from medical procedures .So best to Tod family will keep reading and post a comment from time to time.

    • 33 desertflower
      January 29, 2013 at 8:14 pm

      Know that you are in our thoughts and prayers, wesleya. Always. Keep the faith. So glad to hear that your sweetness 🙂 is progressing well. The light is always on for you…take care of business and check in as you can. Be well, friend.

    • 35 carolyn
      January 29, 2013 at 8:17 pm

      So glad your sweetness is showing signs of recovery. ( I love that designation!) I will pray for his continued improvement. I know how rough life is when one’s sweetness is in physical trouble, and how worthwhile the work and care when the recovery happens.

    • January 29, 2013 at 8:18 pm

      Wesley, so lovely to hear from you, and it’s just wonderful news that your beloved is showing signs of recovery. Thank you so much for letting us know. Wishing you all the very best as you try to get through this horrible time, drop in when you can, will be thinking of you. Lots of love.

    • January 29, 2013 at 8:52 pm

      sending good thoughts your way! (((HUGZ)))

      • January 29, 2013 at 9:16 pm

        Have been praying for your family every day. May you find the strength needed each minute and hour.

      • 39 wesleya17
        January 29, 2013 at 9:26 pm

        thanks very much should have been heading to your part of the country instead of east and the bad weather we got into where can’t drive when the weather is good .thanks again for caring .

    • January 29, 2013 at 8:57 pm

      wesleya17, I know you have a hard road ahead but we are so grateful for the good news of your wife. Stay strong and know that we are all pulling for your whole family here at TOD. Keep the faith.

    • 41 hopefruit2
      January 29, 2013 at 9:15 pm

      Wesleya17 – hang in there. Sending healing vibes for your sweetheart’s complete recovery. Hope things work out with the insurance and fundraising, etc.

    • 42 purpleshoesla
      January 29, 2013 at 9:47 pm

      Wesleya17, I lit a candle for you today to send positive healing energy to you, Sweetness, your family, and your business until all is healing is complete, good health restored to all and prosperity returns to your trucking business.

      Anyone else wants to light a candle for Wesley as we do time to time for our illustrious Prez, you can click on the link below:


  6. January 29, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    Absolutely wonderful Chipsticks! That NatGeo documentary is the best. If my memory serves me right I saw a neat story about Souza’s official PBO portrait where he had to borrow someone’s camera equipment. I’m gonna see if I can dig it up.

  7. 44 Rita
    January 29, 2013 at 8:18 pm

    Pete Souza is making history capturing this historical presidency! And no one could have done it better! Thanks, Chips, for posting his treasures!!

  8. 45 vcprezofan2
    January 29, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    All afternoon I sit here and nothing momentous happens after PBO’s speech; I take a very few minutes to go to the train station ….bam!.. a Souza session! No one can convince me that CC doesn’t centre her posts around my arrival and departures. 😉 😉 🙄

  9. 48 hopefruit2
    January 29, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Pete’s photos (with or without captions) give a far more comprehensive and accurate portrait of our President than any of the Cable News/Print Media punditry, reports or headlines.

  10. January 29, 2013 at 8:19 pm

  11. January 29, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    So here is Michigan’s delightful governor on the topic of the Republican electoral rigging plan (which he was all in favor of). Well, it could be an unfair advantage and this is not the right time. Yes, you read that right – he admits it’s an unfair plan, but he’s reconsidering is support because THE TIME IS NOT RIGHT!!! Yes, Gov. Snyder, it is not the right time for your unfair electoral rigging plan. What a snake. I think this translates to “Oops, we got caught! Better wait until everyone forgets about it and then try to slam it through the legislature just before the next election.” Words alone really cannot express my contempt for this man. I would need facial expressions, gestures and a few props. At least he IS backing off – for now.

    Of course he never actually said he would veto it, so there is that. Just like right-to-work “wasn’t on his agenda” right up until he signed it into law. I think he will try to get reelected in ’14 and then bring it up in ’15 in time for the Presidential election. Michigan we have to vote every single one of these snakes out.


  12. 53 desertflower
    January 29, 2013 at 8:35 pm

    MUST SEE graphic on the REAL takers! http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022278343

    • January 29, 2013 at 8:42 pm

      That. Is. Fantastic. Thank you DF!

    • January 29, 2013 at 8:49 pm

      Thank you df.


      • January 29, 2013 at 8:57 pm

        I know this is a rhetorical question for anyone with two brain cells to rub together…. which is why we all don’t shop there.

        But for any baggers who are lurking….. allow me to answer:

        Because Walmart is bait & switch. You only THINK you’re getting the best price at Walmart – when in reality, because you’re paying for their employee’s food stamps through your taxes (and health care, and child care, and….), you’re actually not only paying more over the long run, you’re allowing Walmart to treat your fellow citizens like slave labor, and making it harder for everyone to make a decent wage, because if the Walmart employees will work for such shitty wages, other people will too.

      • 62 desertflower
        January 29, 2013 at 9:35 pm

        This is in addition to making small businesses shut down when they come marching into towns….utterly disgusting. You could not get me to shop at Walmart if it was the last place on Earth….

  13. January 29, 2013 at 8:39 pm

  14. 66 Nena20409
    January 29, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    My favorite picture is that Picture…… 🙂 #2 🙂 on this post.

    I love it. It is filled with and full of humility, kindness and tenderness.

    It is heartwarming. It is understanding of the need of ONE who is so small (the Kid) and One who is so accepting, teaching, comfortable in his own skin, definitely with Gorgeous physicality (shallow form my part),…..this POTUS.

    The picture is historical and without saying a word…..As has been said Billions of times. A Picture is worth a thousand words. In this case, it worth in words is in, infinity.

    In every level that Picture is Forever quintessential: Pres Barack Hussein Obama.

    A true American hero. A true world Leader. Long Live Pres Barack Obama.

  15. 67 vcprezofan2
    January 29, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    ‘I filled the disc. The speech was so exciting, I filled the disc.’ Pete Souza

    IMO that’s one of the best compliments Pete could give the President. He travels with him all the time, he hears his speeches probably more than anyone else, yet like us, he found the President’s speech exciting/interesting.

  16. January 29, 2013 at 8:44 pm

  17. 70 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    Thanks Nerdy Wonka (let’s see how many TOD’ers figure out who that is) for your great live tweets of PBO speech on immigration.

    Looks like it was a barn burner.

  18. 76 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 8:50 pm

    Congrats to the new SoS Kerry.

  19. January 29, 2013 at 8:52 pm

    I just plainly love Pete Souza. He’s a master and a good soul. How fortunate we are to have him at PBO’s side. The stories he could tell!!

  20. 78 Anna
    January 29, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    Just as I never tire of hearing The President speak, I will never tire of looking at the pictures of this Great President we have, THANK YOU PETE SOUZA.

  21. January 29, 2013 at 8:58 pm

    Khari Joyner is a hottie. Cello is the sexiest musical instrument ever.

  22. 102 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    Sorry to see Ray LaHood to go. He was a good public servant under this Prez.

  23. January 29, 2013 at 9:02 pm

    He is going to Minnesota next week and tomorrow he will be going on telemundo(I think) to do an interview, at 6:30pm.
    I hope when he goes to Minnesota, he goes fight into the Ruby red areas and explains it to them, let them know he is not the bogey man etc.

    • 104 amk for obama
      January 29, 2013 at 9:17 pm

      I expect him to totally campaign against the teabagger congress critters in their own states and turn the house blue in 2014.

  24. 105 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    Read that erickkk erickkkson finally gets to go to his real home. Will that make teann a less stinking place ? Not until candy, wolfy, ms greeny et. al. leave too.

  25. 106 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 9:08 pm

    A blonde was at home watching TV with her friends when she heard a noise. She ran out just in time to see a thief drive off in her car.

    “Did you see his face?” her friends asked when she came back inside.

    “No, but it’s okay. I got the license plate number!”

  26. 110 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 9:14 pm

    A Brunette is walking through the country, when she finds a bottle. She opens it and, you guessed it, a genie appears.

    The genie says,”You are allowed three wishes. But, I must warn you, anything you get, all the blondes in the world get twice as much.”

    The woman says,”Okay. Give me a nice house.”

    The genie replies, ”You now have one nice house and all the blondes in the world have two.”

    The the lady asks,”Give me a gorgeous man.”

    The genie replies,”You now have one gorgeous man, while all the blondes have two.”

    The lady says,”For my last wish, Genie, cut my hair length by half and may it stay that way forever.”

  27. January 29, 2013 at 9:15 pm

  28. 112 utaustinliberal
    January 29, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    I adore Pete Souza. His talent leaves me breathless.

  29. January 29, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    Greatest. Video. Ever:

  30. 115 xtine
    January 29, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    My sense of humor hit an all time high w/ PBO’s speach today. While the R-consultants were telling their politicos to stay away from the “Illegal” word, PBO went ahead & used it, then redefined it! Damn, that was good.

  31. January 29, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    POTUS sent a video message to the Syrian People, albeit I don’t know what it was.

  32. January 29, 2013 at 9:24 pm

    Please thank Lawrence ….

    I sent him this tweet yesterday:

    He tweeted this pm:

    Thanked him and continue to urge support for sensible steps that require any person handling a gun be free of criminal record, mentally stable, trained, licensed, insured and, as opposed to automobiles, heavy equipment, etc., since the ONLY purpose of a gun is to kill, the manufacturers of guns and ammo must carry liability insurance as well.


  33. January 29, 2013 at 9:35 pm

  34. 135 vitaminlover
    January 29, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    More loves:

    I love Jay Carney.

    I love Pete Souza.

    I kind of love Hillary Clinton.

    I love the Secret Service.

    I love First Grandmother Robinson.

    I love Reverend Al Sharpton.

    I love Martin Bashir.

    • 139 99ts
      January 29, 2013 at 10:08 pm

      Appears to be a family issue being resolved by the use of guns – the driver was a hero – concerns re the safety of at least one child.
      The gun has become the method of resolving all and any disputes.

  35. January 29, 2013 at 9:42 pm

  36. 141 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 10:09 pm

  37. 142 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 10:18 pm

    (Reuters) – Outgoing U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Tuesday cast doubt on speculation she might run for the White House in 2016.

    In an interview taped for National Public Radio, Clinton was asked what questions she needs to answer for herself as she decides whether to run for president.

    “I’m not even posing those questions. I am really looking forward to stepping off the fast track that I’ve been on. I’ve been out of politics as Secretary of State. I don’t see myself getting back into politics,” she said, according to an excerpt of the interview.


    Hope this settles the debate once and for all. I would like to see some Obamaesque young blood in the fray.

    • January 29, 2013 at 10:25 pm

      Hope so too, amk. She told everyone, almost exactly a year ago, she was done with politics. Have seen zero indication she’s changed her mind and now she rules it out again.

    • January 29, 2013 at 10:54 pm

    • January 29, 2013 at 10:57 pm

      The pundits are trying to force this issue. It is insane to me with all this country is still facing that the pundits are talking about 2016. It just makes me mad that they try to control the narrative, and force people to believe what they are pushing.

      • 146 amk for obama
        January 29, 2013 at 11:02 pm

        Yup, the inevitable candidate claptrap.

        • January 29, 2013 at 11:20 pm

          Wasn’t she the inevitable candidate in ’08?

          • 148 carolyn
            January 29, 2013 at 11:27 pm

            Yes, she was, and I’m sure she well remembers that very tough primary fight which she did not win……against a totally new candidate with no family support at all….no name recognition, no spouse as former president…….I don’t think she’s masochist enough to put herself through that a second time.

            • 149 Obama Grandmama
              January 30, 2013 at 2:37 am

              Plus the grilling she got over Benghazi is just a taste of what she’d get as POTUS. She knows that from her husband’s time in office besides seeing what PBO has faced. Being 65 + she may be ready to just retire. Maybe after a rest she will decide she wants to try again. Or maybe she will like less pressure and will want to stay retired. I would much rather concentrate on my fav prez ever ‘s second term.

          • 150 amk for obama
            January 29, 2013 at 11:36 pm

            Yup. Let’s see the how many times the third rate emessem got it wrong.

            Hillary – check

            the permanent poutrager – check

            the tax fraud – check

    • 154 susanne
      January 30, 2013 at 12:31 am

      ‘out of politics’ does not mean ‘out of public service’. she may want an ambassadorship, or a seat on the supremes, or… after a nice rest, i’m guessing she’ll want to get back into the big leagues in some capacity. and we can all be grateful for that.

  38. January 29, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    • 156 theo67
      January 30, 2013 at 12:11 am

      There are way too many of these rocket launchers showing up at the buy-backs. Aren’t these things regulated? How do people get a hold of something that dangerous!?!

  39. 157 xtine
    January 29, 2013 at 10:33 pm

    Paraphrasing Ted Kennedy @ his fab speach @ AU in 2008: I feel a change coming! Awesomeness!

  40. January 29, 2013 at 10:37 pm

  41. 171 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 10:42 pm

  42. 173 amk for obama
    January 29, 2013 at 10:55 pm

    You might not have heard of New Jersey state Sen. Barbara Buono, though you’ve probably heard of the man she’s itching to take on in the November election — Gov. Chris Christie.

    Expect to hear more about her. Buono picked up endorsements Tuesday from the Democratic Governors’ Association, southern New Jersey’s seven county Democratic Party chairs and the southern legislative delegation, thereby sewing up enough support statewide to become the Democrats’ presumptive nominee for governor


    Buono, a 59-year-old senator from Metuchen on the fringe of the New York City area, was the first major Democrat to enter the race, but establishment Democrats were slow to back her bid to challenge Christie. Their first choice, Newark Mayor Cory Booker, opted to run for U.S. Senate in 2014 instead of facing Christie.

    “I was always confident the party would come together,” Buono said. “This election is too important — it’s about having someone who stands up for working New Jerseyans and the working poor who have been forgotten by this governor. We’re mounting an aggressive campaign to take the Statehouse back for the middle class.”

    Buono has raised more than $200,000 but needs $380,000 to qualify for public matching funds. Christie has already pulled in $2 million, and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is hosting a fundraiser for him in California next month.


    • 174 theo67
      January 30, 2013 at 12:14 am

      We need to donate to this woman’s campaign. Anyone willing to put their hat into the ring against the bully Chris Christie, even without DNC backing, deserves support. The people of New Jersey need to start reversing the damage from Christie’s policies – high speed rail, public pensions, education reforms. I wish her well!

  43. 175 Dakota
    January 29, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    Just heard this on Pandora…can’t find a video, but the lyrics are enough.
    Sweet dreams my friends…

    The Nearness of You
    Lyrics by Hoagy Carmichael

    It’s not the pale moon that excites me
    That thrills and delights me, oh no
    It’s just the nearness of you

    It isn’t your sweet conversation
    That brings this sensation, oh no
    It’s just the nearness of you

    When you’re in my arms and I feel you so close to me
    All my wildest dreams came true

    I need no soft lights to enchant me
    If you’ll only grant me the right
    To hold you ever so tight
    And to feel in the night the nearness of you

  44. 179 carolmaewy
    January 29, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    OT, but why did only 98 Senators vote? Kerry voted present and 3 were rats. Did I miss something about two senators not serving?

  45. 182 dotster3
    January 29, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    I see Ashley Judd and husband, race car driver Dario Franchitti, have announced their separation.

  46. January 29, 2013 at 11:16 pm

    I just watched a powerful but disturbing documentary on PBS about Henry Ford who was a virulent anti-Semite. He was a real nasty piece of work. And then I googled around and read that Ford was Hitler’s hero and was very inspired and influenced by him:

    “Ford at some point decided that Jews were to blame for most of what he considered evil in the world, including alcohol, jazz, the fixing of baseball games and the First World War. He decided “Jews are scavengers of the world” and in 1920 began a campaign against them in his newspaper, the Dearborn Independent. He published The Protocols of the Elders of Zion as part of a seven-year series of occasional articles titled The International Jew: The World’s Problem.

    The PBS program outlines Ford’s anti-Semitism but omits the most powerful details. Alex Grobman in his recent book, License to Murder, says Adolph Hitler acknowledged that Ford’s views influenced the writing of Mein Kampf. Hitler had a picture of Ford on the wall of his Munich office. “I regard Henry Ford as my inspiration,” he told a Detroit reporter. In 1938, Hitler sent him 75th-birthday greetings and awarded him the Grand Cross of the German Eagle.”

    • 185 carolyn
      January 29, 2013 at 11:38 pm

      We just watched that documentary too. Didn’t know the info about the award from Hitler, though I had heard rumblings of some connection between the two. Didn’t you just ache for Edsel? What a tyrant for a father. Ford was indeed not a nice man.
      I’ve seen that River Rouge plant……it’s beyond HUGE…..and also visited the Henry Ford Museum and Deerfield Village…..that part was interesting. The man was a huge package of contradictions, and very ugly inside.
      After the program I looked up the Lincoln, wondering how that fit into the Ford Company. Learned that Edsel was in charge of that part of the company, and helped design the good looking Lincolns of the 30s. Leland designed both the Cadillac and the Lincoln, and got into trouble financially, so GM bought Cadillac in 1909 and Ford bought Lincoln in 1922.
      Did you by any chance see the three part series on that American Experience on the Abolitionists? That was superb. What would we do without PBS?
      Bill Moyers is reporting again and stirring things up…..last week he had two women guests talking about abortion and the restrictions being put on it by state legislatures.

      • January 29, 2013 at 11:51 pm

        Yes, poor Edsel- that was so heartbreaking, no wonder he died young. And I did watch the Abolitionists, it was painful but so inspiring. I really didn’t know that much about Frederick Douglas or William Garrison. I love American Experience , I always feel enriched by their productions

    • 187 theo67
      January 30, 2013 at 12:10 am

      Yikes. Thank heavens Henry Ford never ran for President.

    • January 30, 2013 at 4:10 am

      He also championed eugenics (forced sterilization) in this country, as did Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, and Winston Churchill; Alexander Graham Bell, Margaret Sanger (Planned Parenthood); Leland Stanford, H. G. Wells;  George Bernard Shaw; and hundreds of others.  It was approved by Supreme Court justices Oliver Wendell Holmes and Louis Brandeis, who ruled in its favor.  Work was done at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford and Johns Hopkins.

      When the Nazis went on trial after World War II, for war crimes in Nuremberg, they justified their mass sterilizations by citing the United States as their inspiration. 

  47. January 29, 2013 at 11:20 pm

    My personal favorite Portland Cello Project Covering Kanye West “All of the Lights”

  48. 190 dotster3
    January 29, 2013 at 11:33 pm

    Wow—kitty cats are killing machines—-2 billion birds and 12 billion mammals per year. Need to be housebound where they can’t be quite so deadly.

  49. 192 Dudette
    January 29, 2013 at 11:43 pm

    A little more detail on the Georgia gun-nut murder that I posted on the previous thread
    Just Horrific

    This is one of the more horrific stories I’ve seen in a while. Not because of the level of carnage — there’s much, much worse. But because of the mix of fear, bad luck, rapid resorts to violence and what I can’t help but think is a generous dollop of gonzo press hype about crime and how you need to rapidly resort to your gun. Unlike some other recent stories, you can’t reduce this to the gun issue or the race issue. But they’re both there.

    From NBCLatino …

    Rodrigo Diaz, 22, was driving around with his girlfriend and two friends when he pulled into a driveway, thinking they had arrived at another friend’s house, his brother says. But instead he pulled into the driveway of Phillip Sailors, 69, who thought his home was being robbed, his lawyer says. Sailors then shot Diaz, according to the police report, citing what Sailors told officers at the scene. Diaz later died after surgery.

    “Basically, what happened is they were looking for one of my brother’s girlfriend’s friends,” says his brother David E. Diaz-Valencia, 23. “The guy came outside and my brother’s girlfriend said he was screaming, ‘Get off my property!’ and he shot into the air. My brother was backing out fast because he was scared and he rolled down the window to say he was sorry and he was not doing anything wrong. Then the guy shot him in his head.”

    The car’s GPS apparently led Diaz and his friends to the wrong home. Sailors’ lawyer says Sailors feared he and his wife were about to be the victim of a home invasion. He’s now in the county jail charged with murder.

    • 193 theo67
      January 30, 2013 at 12:06 am

      I’m glad the deranged gun nut was charged with murder – because that’s what he did. Unfortunately, it’s not going to bring back a young man who was only 22 years old. And it won’t take away the horrific memory from those friends he was with, of seeing their friend blown away by a man who is so cowardly and terrified, that he could shoot a young man even when the gun nut was the only man holding a gun.

      • 194 Dudette
        January 30, 2013 at 12:29 am

        I just hope he doesn’t get off. Georgia is another state with the heinous ALEC-promoted “Stand Your Ground” crap on the books.

        • 195 theo67
          January 30, 2013 at 12:33 am

          I can’t imagine that “Stand Your Ground” can work here, when there are witnesses saying that the GPS led them there, that they were backing away, and that the poor boy was apologizing before he was shot. The boy didn’t even have a gun, so how on earth can a person with a loaded gun feel like they are defenseless when faced with an unarmed kid? These “Stand Your Ground” people need to be held to a standard that warrants taking someone’s life away.

          • 196 Dudette
            January 30, 2013 at 1:32 am

            “These “Stand Your Ground” people need to be held to a standard that warrants taking someone’s life away.”

            Well now, there’s the rub, isn’t it? It seems the standard is “I felt threatened.”

            ALEC needs to be put out of business. Banned, Outlawed. Period. End of story.

            • 197 theo67
              January 30, 2013 at 1:42 am

              I totally, 100% agree with you.

            • 198 99ts
              January 30, 2013 at 1:58 am

              That – also, too – seems to be a permit to kill – woman in Florida who shot the ceiling (to scare) instead of the man (to kill) got 20 years in prison – it really is a white man’s law.

        • 199 99ts
          January 30, 2013 at 1:56 am

          I don’t think “stand your ground” will work but a lawyer will say “he was skeered for his life” and I doubt he will see much jail time – back home to shoot more of the brown folks.

    • 200 dotster3
      January 30, 2013 at 12:25 am

      A 15 yr. old girl who marched with her school band at President Obama’s inauguration was shot and killed in Chgo today and another teen was shot and hospitalized. Teens were hanging out in a park after exams and someone decided to start shooting—–everyone’s got a gun, why not use it? (Chgo Trib)

  50. January 30, 2013 at 12:14 am

    I saw this on facebook and just loved it. I am sure if I am posting this correctly. Watch if you have some time. It sure made me feel good.

  51. 208 theo67
    January 30, 2013 at 12:41 am

    Question: the Second Amendment people like to say that their Constitutional right should not be infringed. How many of them are willing to infringe on the rights of women to privately have abortions?

  52. 212 Dudette
    January 30, 2013 at 12:45 am

    Phew! Almost missed Charlie Wilson’s birthday (Jan 29)! Oh well, it’s still Jan 29 out west!

    Here’s one of my faves! I think they might’ve been singing about Chips. Whatcha think? 😀

  53. 214 susanne
    January 30, 2013 at 12:53 am

    okay, in case you’re getting sleepy–hawaii lad surfs 100 foot high wave in portugal:

  54. 217 Dudette
    January 30, 2013 at 1:01 am

    Missed this sad news yesterday about the passing of Leroy ‘Sugarfoot’ Bonner of the Ohio Players. May he rest in peace.

  55. 219 Dudette
    January 30, 2013 at 1:28 am

    Guess I’m in here talking to the wall again. 🙂
    Oh well! Goodnight everybody!

  56. 222 auntsis522
    January 30, 2013 at 6:44 am

    Good Morning, all. Wakie, wakie…get up, get up, get up!!! Its humpday.
    FIRST ON RISE & SHINE….haha hopefruit2! 🙂

    • January 30, 2013 at 7:04 am

      Good morning, everyone. Batting down the hatches for the coming storms. Climate change anyone???????!!!!!!!!!!

      Wednesday is my day to make the trip to northeast TN to see my mom. Not going today. Tornadoes forecast and I am here alone. Husband is over in NC (around Cherokee) hiking.

      Blessed and safe day to all.

    • 225 Dudette
      January 30, 2013 at 7:10 am

      Alirght, aliright, I’m up… (sort of) [yawwwwn… big cat stretch] Oy!
      Listen, whatever it is you just ate, drink or sniffed, send some over here, would ya? 😀

    • 227 hopefruit2
      January 30, 2013 at 8:30 am

      Congrats auntsis on #1! I don’t mind if you’re first today – I’m in such a good mood with all the positive economic news and everything 🙂

  57. 228 utaustinliberal
    January 30, 2013 at 7:28 am

    America loooooooooooves it’s “socialists.”

  58. 231 sonjiaduncan
    January 30, 2013 at 7:41 am

    Good Morning auntsis I was too busy reading the thread and did not know you were down here all by yourself. I was trying to be quiet so that I would not wake all the babies who are still sleeping.

  59. 232 desertflower
    January 30, 2013 at 8:02 am

    Morning!! tnmtngirl…take good care today. I guess that you must be getting the weather we had here in CA and AZ….so much rain my house leaked….and it was freezing here!

    Take good care. I heard that tornadoes could be a problem for several states. Hope everyone will stay safe…and nothing happens in your state because I’m SURE that there would be no disaster relief coming your way….(for those that DON’T know…this is snark!)

  60. 233 amk for obama
    January 30, 2013 at 8:11 am

  61. January 30, 2013 at 8:21 am

    • 244 99ts
      January 30, 2013 at 8:45 am

      I weep for Gabby whenever we are reminded of what happened. Despite the amazing recovery, she will never be who she was. If EVER a shooting should not have happened it was this one. Violent talk has consequences.

  62. 245 desertflower
    January 30, 2013 at 8:43 am


    How the violent mentally ill can buy guns

    At 77, Janet Hume was living with her adult son, Gerald, who the family said was schizophrenic. Since she typically kept in close contact with relatives, police decided to investigate.
    They visited the Hume home on three occasions. Each time, her son refused to let them inside, insisting “everything was OK,” according to a police affidavit.
    But it was far from it.
    What police eventually discovered instead was a horrendous case that underscores how little the country’s current gun laws can do to stop a mentally ill person from buying a gun — even if, like Gerald Hume, they have a documented history of violence.

    In addition to the handgun and three rifles, police also removed a Whirlpool freezer, a reciprocating saw and a serrated kitchen knife, according to the inventory, filed with the search warrant. They also seized a pair of blood-splattered safety glasses and a white plastic trash bag containing women’s clothing that was “cut up/stained,” the document said.
    Authorities found parts of Janet Hume’s body inside the freezer, along with the body of a house cat, the district attorney told the Oklahoman newspaper.
    Gerald Hume was described in the affidavit as a “known schizophrenic (who) hears voices, and requires treatment” and who has had “several mental health interventions with OCPD” and a history of violent behavior.
    He didn’t steal his guns or borrow them. He bought them.
    “He bought them like any normal person would — he got them at Walmart,” said Oklahoma City Police Capt. Dexter Nelson.
    Hume bought the rifles at the Walmart in Moore, Oklahoma, on September 25. The next day he bought the Glock at Gun World in the nearby town of Dell City, according to Nelson. Both are federally licensed gun dealers that conduct background checks. The checks, in theory, are supposed to stop certain people — including the mentally ill with a history of violence — from buying them.

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