FBI have asked the elderly to stop knocking Oregon militants on their ass

Old-man-bird-watcher-SizedThe title says it all, and yes, I confess that I did indeed quite enjoy reading this.

The story is about Robert Saunders, a 79 year old retied teacher and devoted birdwatcher, who was out checking on some owls. While doing so he was confronted by an armed Oregon militant who quickly got in his face and started barking out demands that he should lie on the ground. What happened next is truly beautiful …

“Well heck, one second he was warming his hands by this kind of puny little fire and the next second he was running at me and shouting to get down on the ground,” Saunders told reporters gathered near the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

“Made me mad really. It’s public property and here this guy is acting all big and tough and pushy.”

“I don’t swear much at all but I told him to screw right off and that made him really angry. He started yelling right into my face — his breath was…well, pee you…it smelled like beer and maybe salami sausages or something.”

“So I said there was no darn way I was getting down on the ground and he poked me in the shoulder — so, yeah, I did a leg take-down. Didn’t know I even remembered that old move. Did it without even thinking about it. Haha.”

“He landed pretty hard on his back and I could tell he was winded because he started moaning and trying to suck air into his lungs. And that was that.”

… then a bit later …

“I hope I didn’t hurt the man…well, his pride maybe,” said Saunders from his small bungalow in the nearby town of Burns, population 2,700.

“When I left to go check on the owls, he was still curled up in a ball on the ground.”

Apparently this is the first actual confrontation that has taken place, and so perhaps the icing on the cake here is this final quote …

“we’re asking the elderly not to knock any more militants on their ass,” said the grinning FBI agent.

Meanwhile over in the comments …

Somebody within the comments for that article asserted “who said they were criminals?“, and in keeping with the tone of the article, he was soon verbally knocked on his ass.

One last rather important observation

OK, this last bit is the real point here. Did you like the story?

Perhaps yes because it is something many of us would love to see, but alas, the source is the problem. The story comes from Lapine, a Canadian satire site and so no, this is not actually a real story at all, it never happened. It caught my interest because this was being circulated (by some) as a real news item. This one was easy to spot because Lapine tells you that they are a satire site, and also the rather unfamiliar odd name and other stories should have raised a red flag.

We are all awash with stuff on FB and Twitter that is really amusing at times, but not actually true at all, and so if you were believing this story as you read it, and if I had not inserted that last bit, would you be accepting that it was a true story?

Skepticism matters because it is so very human to embrace the stories we often receive as “truth” when they are presented as real, especially when it comes from an apparently credible source. We might indeed laugh at those that embrace everything that Trump says as fact, but we should not forget that they in turn laughed at us in a similar manner as we listened with deep respect to that quite amazing State of the Union speech by Obama.

Are you now confused about who is really being truthful?

Don’t be, because skepticism simply means asking yourself what evidence there is to verify what is being said and to then use that to reach a conclusion.

Is Trump truthful? When his various claims are checked, then you quickly discover that it is 99% BS, and that is not an opinion, but rather is a well-establish fact that can be checked and verified.

Is Obama truthful? It is a rather common Republican line to assert that he lies all the time about everything, but when you apply the exact same criteria, then you discover that he is indeed truthful.

You will be swamped on all side by all sorts of claims from all sorts of sources, especially in an election year, and so if you wish to avoid being tossed to and fro by it all, then it is well worth developing a well-tuned BS meter.

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