Pick Your Battles

by William Skink

The phrase “pick your battles” means “…to choose not to participate in minor, unimportant, or overly difficult arguments, contests, or confrontations, saving one’s strength instead for those that will be of greater importance or where one has a greater chance of success.

After reading this post by Greg Strandberg and this post by James Conner, I think these two Montana bloggers should take some time and seriously consider the battles they are picking.

When Greg Strandberg went to Walmart in Missoula last Saturday he probably didn’t expect to get an up close look at a handgun, but that is what he claims happened when he exited his vehicle to confront another motorist in the parking lot:

I was in the parking lot driving out when the car in front of me just stopped.

After about 30 seconds of that I honked at them a few times. The woman in the passenger seat waved that it was the truck in front of them that wasn’t moving.

Sure enough, this truck was just sitting there ahead of us…like it just backed out of a spot but was not…just sitting there.

The truck had a disabled veteran plate and there were numerous Trump stickers on the back window.

I got out of my car and walked up to this truck to figure out what was going on.

“Sir, we’re trying to leave the parking lot, would you please move,” I said.

I was greeted with a small handgun as the man told me to stop honking.

“Oh, so you’re going to wave a gun in my face?” I replied.

I can’t remember what he said to that, but I did threaten to call the cops on him and again repeated that all I wanted to do was leave the parking lot. I walked back to my car, and after sitting there for another 30 seconds or so, the man finally drove off.

James Conner is also writing about the confrontations he is choosing to engage in and he is encouraging you, dear readers, to do the same thing.  His targets?  Grocery store staff who don’t wear masks properly.  If you aren’t clear about the course of action Conner is recommending, the title of his post is this:  Let’s confront store employees who flout mask-up rules, and let’s file formal complaints with our boards of health.

At Walmart this morning, the checker wore his mask below his nose in defiance of our governor’s mask-up directive. I confronted him. Yesterday, at Super 1, my bagger also wore his mask below his nose. I confronted him, too.

James Conner could be ordering groceries online and then doing curb side pickup if he is so worried about what comes out of people’s noses, but instead of doing something that would give him an added layer of protection, he is instead choosing to confront hourly paid workers in grocery stores because they aren’t following the mask dictates from our Governor.

To conclude his call to action, Conner ends his post with this:

I encourage you to fight back, too. To borrow from Barry Goldwater, timidity in the presence of mask scofflaws is no virtue. Confronting barefaced employees is no vice.

Greg Strandberg and James Conner may assume they are acting righteously with the battles they are picking, but what are their decisions to escalate day-to-day encounters with their fellow Americans actually going to accomplish?

Will it stop the looting being done by central banks?  Will it stop the wars that have financially hollowed out this nation and spread death and anti-American hatred across the globe?  Will it stop corporate consolidation and the broad centralizing of power that is taking place as sociopaths in positions of power exploit this pandemic?

Bag boys with exposed noses at grocery stores and a disabled vet brandishing a handgun at Walmart are not the enemies here, even though their behavior may be seen as personally threatening to the bloggers who chose to confront them.

I hope Greg and James figure that out before the real battle begins.

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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7 Responses to Pick Your Battles

  1. Big Swede says:

    What ever happened to “My Body My Choice”, Karen Conner?

  2. Eric says:

    If you go looking for trouble, you will surely find it.

    Proved once again, this time by Strandberg.

    What he did was really stupid.

    I knew a guy yeRs ago, who got cut off by a driver in Billings, followed him to a west end parking lot, got out to confront him and got a 5” blade in his side for his trouble.

    After surgeries he recovered, took the guy to civil court, the jury found in his favor and awarded him $1.00 total.

  3. Big Swede says:

    You must obey.

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  6. S Brennan says:

    If worn by everybody at high volume human interactions masks cut down on infection rates and the severity of infections…that said, one of my father’s admonitions to me was was, “nobody likes a reformed reformer”…

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