Friday, December 21, 2012

Is Today the end of the world?

Oggy doesn't have to hold a news conference to announce his views on gun violence. If any politician thinks he can control guns then he should run his next campaign on ending prostitution and underage drinking because he's totally insane or else he's the greatest statesman ever. That will never ever happen. We let the cat out of the bag and the FBI can't keep track of assault rifles sold to drug cartels and the CIA sells rocket launchers to Bin Laden to fight the Soviets in exchange for warriors to kill Honduran hippies. Ok, but the Kittery Trading Post gun rack is the problem?? It's too late for a conservative approach to gun ownership. Radical measures for radical people. We won our freedom with stolen muskets in 1776 and then slaughtered each other in 1862 and then gunned down Germans and Japs in 1945 and Bin Laden was introduced to the business side of an assault rifle a few years back. Nobody wants our schools to become killing fields but that also applies to our fear that China will launch an invasion while Family Guy reruns play to stoned obese sloths...so guns are as plentiful as dental floss and we are technically safer because of it... until unpredictable human nature steps in.
The problem is a matter of trust that everyone with access to a gun is responsible. Obviously this isn't true and even the NRA wouldn't defend access to guns for every lunatic. But who is a lunatic and how many black market gun dealers are doing background checks on their clients? The question comes up: why does a 20 year old person in Connecticut need access to guns? The NRA's response will be, "That's not your concern because you live in a free country. Move to Singapore if you want to be thrown in jail and caned if you chew gum." And they have a point since there is a wide spectrum of freedoms in the world and not all of them work for old fun-loving Oggy.

Guns carry a grave responsibility. The most responsible NRA person I met, during one of his many tangential discourses, announced to the anthropology class he was teaching, "I raised my son to use and respect firearms. If I ever sense that he has lost this respect then it's my responsibility to..." and then he put on a sad face and pantomimed the act of hugging someone and putting a handgun to their head and pulling the trigger. "I'd put him down...because I love him and that's my job."
The 30 students quivered in our seats.

I drive 500 miles a day for work (to get to work and back). Almost 4000 miles a week most of it in the dark on winding undivided farm roads pulling a ton of material in a trailer and playing chicken with a big rig hauling an oversized oil tank. Sometimes my coworkers ask me why I'm driving so slow so it got me thinking a lot about the fine difference between two similar statements: "I don't see a deer in front of me." and "I see that there are no deer in front of me."
Ask the pilot of the Titanic what the difference is. "I don't see an iceberg." or "I see that there are no icebergs."
Anyway, applied to gun ownership the difference is this: "I think this gun owner is responsible because I see no irresponsible actions." or "This gun owner is responsible because I only see responsible actions."

Well, it's a fine difference and I don't suggest we start killing those gun owners who are not blatantly responsible, but owning a gun is certainly a right that must be repeatedly earned and not something that some colonial insurgents in 1776 wrote down and thus applies for all time to all people. What do I know? I'm just a dirty liberal who hates freedom.

However, since the cat is still out of the bag, the only solution is to have armed guards at every school and movie theater and arm the teachers and garbage men and symphony ushers too.* If we aren't ready to do that then executions such as the ones in Sandy Hook are basically collateral damage for being lazy. I'm the king of hypocrites so trust me when I say that ignoring common cigarette and alcohol deaths while concentrating on the incredibly rare elementary school massacre is called egregiously selective legislation. Diabetes deaths caused by Snickers bars and Big Red are more common than school massacres. But Congress is full of fucked up lawyers who argue that you can't pinpoint the exact bottle of Big Red that caused diabetes or the precise puff of smoke that...blah blah blah. Ok, big boy, mop up some more government squeeze cheese while you bitch about tax brackets.

Question: What legislation can you pass today that will stop a school massacre tomorrow?
Answer: None. But you can criminalize a bunch of people who are otherwise totally harmless. Nice job!

You fight fire with fire and leave the peaceful demonstrations to the Occupy Wall Street folks who are all on unemployment now. We have Junior ROTC and 6th graders going to mini boot camp and Freshman going to junior police academy. Are we pretending kids are precious angels we don't use for the dirty business of stealing oil land? It's awful to agree with such slippery fucks like the NRA spokespeople but when you put up a sign that says, "NO GUN ZONE" you really are painting a big bullseye on a school. If a 5 year old kid had broken the rules and brought a gun to school he would've been safer. How fucked up is that? And I'm sounding more like Bill O'fryMeLaterReilly...which is gross. Time to leave Texas.


I'm booking my flight to Singapore.

*Interestingly, this is the exact prescription that the NRA came up with**  - not because they are gun fanatics but because they are realistic. We do live in a war zone. More Americans die at the hands of Americans than in any war. You can't turn back the clock on 300 years of cultural disintegration. We aren't peace loving and we might as well accept that. But I'll count on one hand the number of NRA members who volunteer to patrol their local elementary school.

**I suspect the official response will be completely the opposite of this and therefore totally ineffectual. Like we're going to wake up one day and think like The Swiss. Sure. Right after Clint Eastwood movies are banned from Walmart.

P.S. I'm repulsed that I've sunk to the level of a blowhard. This massacre and the reaction breaks my heart. To hear manufactured mouths say, "These killing feel different." as though the less recent assassinations weren't grisly enough. Is that not a form of insanity when you grade mass killings according to how they impact you? And if it's gotten to the point where people who are paid for their opinions live at the mercy of the news cycle then it's safe to say our reality is manufactured between commercials for cars and erectile dysfunction drugs.
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Man in the Van by Oggy Bleacher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.