Once Again, Nothing

National gun control legislation is dead again. A month after a shooter massacred 17 students and faculty at Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Florida, it looks as if Congress will not be taking up any gun control bill, nor will the White House, currently preoccupied with blaming video games for the violence, be sending any measures, other than the insane idea of arming teachers, to Capitol Hill. For a time, there, it looked like this latest tragedy would be the one that finally led to action, but the GOP is nothing if not resilient when it comes to ignoring calls for action that go against the will of their paymasters. Continue reading “Once Again, Nothing”

Insane and Stupid

Here we are again. More children and teachers have been slaughtered in an American school. The death toll was horrific enough this time to get the gun control debate raging once more. At first blush, that sounds cynical, but remember that the shooting last week in Parkland, Florida, which claimed 17 lives, came less than a month after a 15-year-old student in Marshall County, Kentucky shot 16 people in the lobby of his high school, but only two of them died. That story was barely a blip in the news. Continue reading “Insane and Stupid”

Here We Go Again

The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution is an outdated relic that gun enthusiasts use as a cudgel against any meaningful gun control legislation. Many liberals, this one included, have been loathe to speak out too forcefully against it, for a variety of reasons. The way that I soothed my own conscience about the 2nd Amendment was to hold with the idea that weakening the 2nd could leave the other amendments vulnerable. That’s still a concern, but it’s outweighed by my desire, a common sense one, to live in a society that is no longer armed to the teeth — that no longer fetishizes firearms. Continue reading “Here We Go Again”

Guns Are Part of the Problem

This has been written about before, but until the problem is solved, it’s worth writing about over and over and over again. Omar Mateen, the shooter who massacred scores of people at an Orlando nightclub, bought his guns, a Sig Sauer MCX semi-automatic rifle (similar to an AR-15) and a Glock 17 semi-automatic handgun, legally. Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, the two shooters who carried out the San Bernardino massacre, acquired their weapons, a pair of AR-15 type semi-automatic rifles as well as two 9mm semi-automatic handguns, legally. Adam Lanza, the deranged killer of twenty children and seven adults in Newtown, Connecticut, used a Bushmaster XM15-E2S, a weapon based on the AR-15, to carry out his crime. It had been purchased legally by his mother, with whom he lived. James Holmes, the perpetrator of the mass shooting at an Aurora, Colorado movie theater, bought the weapons he used, a Glock 22 semi-automatic handgun, a Remington 870 Express Tactical shotgun, and a Smith & Wesson M&P15, an AR-15 variant, legally. Continue reading “Guns Are Part of the Problem”

We Are Irredeemably Stupid, Tin Foil Hat Edition

Former baseball great Chipper Jones has slipped into the outrage/persecution complex. His crime? He wrote something stupid on Twitter. This past Friday, Chipper wrote, referring to the Sandy Hook massacre, “So the FBI comes out and confirms that Sandy Hook was a hoax! Where is the outrage? What else are we being lied to about? Waco? JFK? Pfff...” The internet was quick to respond, and Chipper had to return to Twitter to type up an apology. A supplicant come on bended knee, Chipper had roused the fury of the internet irate, and offered his due penance. He shouldn’t worry. The attention span for matters like this, especially involving retired athletes who are normally far away from the public eye, is short. He could have gotten away with doing nothing, but that would have meant staying offline for a week or so. Who wants to do that? Continue reading “We Are Irredeemably Stupid, Tin Foil Hat Edition”

Cocksuckers Ball: Are You Fucking Kidding Me?

Gun control looks to be dead. Whatever hopes people had that something positive could come out of the Newtown massacre have been dashed. Assault weapons ban? Dead. Magazine size limit? Dead. National gun registry? Dead. Universal background checks, the most popular of all gun control proposals? Dead. Continue readingCocksuckers Ball: Are You Fucking Kidding Me?”

The NRA Can Eat a Bag of Dicks

The National Rifle Association has done a fine job of making a fool of itself since the Newtown massacre. Just the other day a new commercial hit the airwaves. It consists of simple visuals with a voiceover attacking President Obama. Here’s the text of the ad:


Are the President’s kids more important than yours? Then why is he skeptical about putting armed security in our schools, when his kids are protected by armed guards at their school? Mr. Obama demands the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes. But, he is just another elitist hypocrite when it comes to a fair share of security. Protection for their kids, and gun free zones for ours.

This ad hits some great notes. The tax language communicates to the right wing that this ad is for them, while calling the President an elitist is a classic frame used to attack liberalism. Finally, the NRA has been attacking gun free zones as part of the problem, arguing that if staff are allowed to be armed, school shootings would never occur (ridiculous). But it’s the main message of the ad that has set off so many alarms. Continue reading “The NRA Can Eat a Bag of Dicks”

Which Guns Go?

This video points out some of the absurdity in proposed weapons bans in the aftermath of the Newtown massacre. The video’s creator is not in favor of weapons or magazine bans of any kind, it seems, and points out that at least one proposal, on magazine size, is functionally useless. Well then, he has made a very strong argument that soft measures are pointless, so it’s time to get draconian. Continue reading “Which Guns Go?”

Punished Innocence

I wish I could write that I was shocked or surprised by the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. But I’m not. Anyone in this country who is surprised by a mass shooting hasn’t been paying much attention the last thirty years. Mass shootings, and the grief and death they bring with them, are a part of American life now, occurring with more frequency than the Super Bowl. So no, I’m not shocked or surprised. I’m disgusted. But as the days go by, I’m more and more horrified at shooter Adam Lanza’s choice of victims. I would like to pretend that all life has equal value, that a mass shooting at an elementary school would be no more tragic than at a factory or retirement home, but that’s just not the case. Not one of the child victims of this shooting was over the age of seven. Most were six. The beauty of youthful innocence is not in its lack of sin, but in its capacity for unpunished naiveté. The hard lessons of life have yet to be learned for most children the ages of the Newtown victims. We look at young children and can’t help but remember how blissfully unaware we were at that age of the cruelty with which we dance as adults. Continue reading “Punished Innocence”