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Monday, August 06, 2012

NOW can we have a discussion about guns?
Posted by Jill | 5:35 AM
What's it going to take? How high does the body count have to go? What has to happen before we can talk about guns? At what point does the NRA have to concede that rights come with responsibilities? On the other hand, how can we have a discussion when leaders of the political party that refuses to cotton to ANY discussion of ANY kinds of sensible responsibilites of gun owners behaves like a bunch of four-year-olds, stuffing themselves with meat in response to a suggestion that maybe skipping meat one night a week might be a good idea?

Of course these are people who are incapable of having two ideas in their heads at the same time, instead believing that something not forbidden must be mandatory (abortion), and something not mandatory is forbidden (guns). The ideas of "less" or "sensible" never occur to Republicans. It's eather stuff yourself with pig flesh until you can't breathe or be a pussy. It's either own an arsenal that could kill an entire town or be unprotected against unspecified threats.

This morning I wonder just how much the fear of unspecified threats motivates the amassing of these arsenals, and how much amassing these arsenals CAUSES this constant state of fear. We heard about ignorant yahoos beating up Sikhs in the immediate aftermath of 9/11, but haven't heard much lately about violence against Sikhs until yesterday, when a white male decided to kill a bunch of them before being shot to death himself by police.

This happened in Wisconsin, the state that elected Scott Walker and refused to boot him from office. This happened in a state right next door to Minnesota, where one district is represented by Michele Bachmann, who advocates a witch hunt against Muslims in America. Sikhs are not Muslims, but that's immaterial. The modus operandi of Michele Bachmann and other Republicans who have made no secret of their advocacy of an all-white, all-Christian America, cannot be ruled out as an influence on the gunman, despite the delicate treading of the police, who are referring to this incident as "domestic terrorism" (something you ironically never hear when the target of a shooting is a medical practitioner of women's health care).

And once again, "our thoughts and prayers" are with the families of the victimes, blah blah blah. President Obama, who has been vilified as being ready to take guns away from these morons despite the fact that he has never, ever, ever, ever even MENTIONED the word "gun" since taking office, responded with the usual platitudes:
Michelle and I were deeply saddened to learn of the shooting that tragically took so many lives in Wisconsin. At this difficult time, the people of Oak Creek must know that the American people have them in our thoughts and prayers, and our hearts go out to the families and friends of those who were killed and wounded. My Administration will provide whatever support is necessary to the officials who are responding to this tragic shooting and moving forward with an investigation. As we mourn this loss which took place at a house of worship, we are reminded how much our country has been enriched by Sikhs, who are a part of our broader American family.

What a lovely sentiment. How clean, how completely devoid of any sense of the horror of people being mowed down simply because of their religion, or of the fact that their religion requiers them to wear headgear that some ignorant idiot decide made them Muslim, or the general anti-Muslim sentiment that is still pervasive in many communities in America.

Willard Rmoney responded similarly:

"Ann and I extend our thoughts and prayers to the victims of today's shooting in Wisconsin. This was a senseless act of violence and a tragedy that should never befall any house of worship. Our hearts are with the victims, their families and the entire Oak Creek Sikh community. We join Americans everywhere in mourning those who lost their lives and in prayer for healing in the difficult days ahead."

Sound pretty much the same, don't they? Someone right now is probably coming up with a "Presidential Gun Violence Statement Generator" where you can push a button and come up with similar platitudinous nonsense.

Yes, let's talk about how "our hearts are with these people" when they aren't, for if they really were we would DO SOMETHING. Let's talk about how we "pray" for them and their families. Let's just say a bunch of words that mean nothing, and continue to go on just as we have been, insisting that guns had ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH people who go out and mow down doctors and movie theatre patrons and Congresswomen and Amish girls and college students and high school students and people attending a Unitarian church. Let's continue to pretend that these guys could do the same thing with a knife, or that turning every one of these into a free-for-all gunfight would be the answer. Let's continue to ignore the big white elephant in the room. Because in our "pro-life" society, the only lives that matter are those of fetuses and people who own guns. The rest of us are just cannon fodder.

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Blogger Bartender Cabbie said...
Here is the extent of my discussion on guns.....

I have them. I like them. I am responsible for and with them. No one will take them. Period.

Anonymous BNJ said...
Yes, by all means. Guns should be THE issue of the 2012 election. The Democrats should talk about *nothing* else for the next 3 months.

Blogger Jill said...
I should have known that the first comments would be from two guys who seem to think that ...well, maybe it's just that TITANIC was in heavy rotation on cable last month, but I think Dr. Freud's views on the male obsession with guns would be of particular interest to you.

Anonymous The WP said...
Unless your purpose is nefarious, why would one need a handgun with a quick change magazine?

There will always be gun owners in the US, but it's time to better regulate what guns are permitted for home ownership. The has to be sensible debate. Any elected official who refuses to enter into that conversation has been bought and paid for by the NRA and should be un-elected in the next go'round.

Blogger BadTux said...
Answer: No. No we can't. Because there is a sizable percentage of Americans who fondle their guns, who have sex while stroking their guns, who fantasize about shooting people with their guns while they yank their pud, who are a huge voting bloc in the Hate Belt that stretches from the Midwest down into the state of the Old Confederacy, a Hate Belt where the majority of people, as in Yugoslavia in the 1980's, despise and hate anybody who is not of the same race and cultural background as they are. To address guns you would have to address the existence of the Hate Belt. And that is something which is not going to happen, because that would require admitting that America is not perfect, is not special, is just as susceptible to Yugoslav Disease as any other nation cludged together from multiple regions with distinct cultures and ethnic mixes, and that would be unpatriotic and, well, unthinkable, actually. So we're going to continue this way until something happens to make it impossible to ignore the elephant in the room. I don't know what that will be, but it will have to be something big, something involving a lot more than a half dozen dead here, a dozen dead there. So it goes in the United States of Self Delusion...

- Badtux the Depressed Penguin

Blogger Bartender Cabbie said...
I don't know what the good Dr. said on the male obsession with guns but I am guessing that it has something to do with peepee size.

In my particular case I grew up in the country where everyone had at least one rifle and shotgun. I used to hunt as a young man until I began to think that killing deer was sort of stupid (especially since I moved to Texas where one can actually set out feeders making it as easy as shooting a farmer's cow).

With that said, I am a gun owner. I have 2 rifles that are over 100 years old and are family treasures (they still work fine btw). Any govt agency that deems it necessary to take them will have to break down my door and haul me off to the gulag before I relinquish them.

I think you are mistaken about Freud. Wasn't he talking about Harley Davidson motorcycles? I will be putting in my order shortly.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
That government agency will take your guns when both parties overcome their fear of the NRA.

In other words, never.

Blogger Bartender Cabbie said...
BadTux just might not be playing with a full deck. I have lived all over this land; the "hate belt",California and Long Island. People are pretty much the same.

I hate to call someone an idiot on a formum not mine but....