We’ve been here before: a school massacre, media saturation coverage, the anti-gun lobby in full, furious flow, seeking to pin the blame on responsible gun owners and the NRA for the act of one crazy individual.
Reasoned debate is difficult in these circumstances. There is nothing more emotive than such a senseless slaughter, and the gun-grabbers intend to keep that emotion stoked long enough to push through their pre-set agenda, but whatever controls they enact cannot prevent another attack, neither will another attack make them doubt the sense of the controls they impose now. Rather, the logic of the interventionist is thus; we have tried X, it didn’t work. Let us try more X. Never will it occur that; maybe X wasn’t such a good idea.
Ban high capacity magazines, they demand. What the hell difference does this make, when the cops are five or ten minutes away? It takes two seconds to change a magazine. Ban assault weapons, they demand, no civilian has a right to own a military weapon (we’ll come to this next). Again, what difference does this make to a crazy killer, especially one who chooses as his victims the most vulnerable and defenceless?
Now, as the question of the citizen’s right to own so-called military weapons is being called into question, it may be time to take a look at what the law actually says on the matter, because it’s pretty damned clear. There is no confusion on this point. Those who dispute it, do so because they don’t like what it says. The 2nd Amendment guarantees (i.e. recognises as pre-existing) the right of the people to keep and bear arms, not for personal self-defence or hunting, but in case of the need to resist a tyrannical government, and as a deterrent to any government from becoming tyrannical. As such, the people have every right to such weapons, if not RPGs and Howitzers as well.
That’s no longer relevant, the other side declares. Fine. All you need to do, then, is amend the Constitution. There is a process. It has been used before. An amendment would need to clear Congress with a 2/3 vote in each House and then be ratified by the states. Good luck with that.
Assuming this doesn’t happen, Nota Bene: There are 80,000,000 gun owners in America, and a sizable minority of them, and let us hope we never know how many, are not going to hand over their guns, but will fight to the death to defend what they consider a God-given, inalienable and lawful right. If only one percent of gun-owners take the ‘cold dead hands’ approach, the federal government is facing the best part of 1 million people. Not only that, every law enforcement officer and military person has sworn an oath to the Constitution which obliges them to refuse any gun confiscation order, which would clearly be illegal, according to the Bill of Rights. They have every reason to remember their oath. Many of the gun-owners they would face are military veterans, as well trained or better than themselves, and most likely with a keener sense of the righteousness of their struggle.
An alternative to such an apocalyptic bloodbath would be for the states where gun-grabbers predominate to secede from the Union, seeing as they find themselves at such discord with the nation’s settled laws. Back before the Civil War (so-called), it was assumed that a state could leave the Union, and it was usually the northern states which threatened to do so, such as over the War of 1812, which was very unpopular in New England. Just a suggestion.
It must be assumed that the federal government will not attempt such a bloody strategy, and will instead try to impose lesser restrictions, with more onerous rules on buying guns, or types of guns or magazines, and more efforts to prohibit particular individuals from owning guns. Veterans are certainly being targeted, with the issue of mental health being used as a reason to ban them from keeping firearms.
What, however, lies behind this modern phenomenon of mass shooting? Simplistically blaming gun ownership ignores the fact that America has always been a gun-owning nation. Something else must have happened. One factor which seems to be almost, if not completely, constant in all such events is that the killer is on prescribed drugs of a certain kind. Although no doubt there were mass-shootings BP (Before Prozac), the rise of mass-medication coincides with the proliferation of this type of event. It could be said that people on these drugs are only on them because they are already mentally-unstable, but research does link them to psychotic episodes, and it is a matter of urgency to establish to what extent this type of drug may be causing people to do things no sane or moral individual could possibly countenance, given the staggering amounts of such drugs being prescribed.
It may seem counter-intuitive to the anti-gun lobby, but increasing gun control can only worsen the risk of massacres by deranged individuals, by preventing ordinary people from stopping such attacks in their tracks. All of these massacres over recent years have taken place in areas where citizens are prohibited from being armed. Therefore, no one is in a position to do the one and only thing guaranteed to stop the killer: shoot him dead. Indeed, these killers usually kill themselves as soon as they are confronted by someone else with a gun. This happened only the other day in the Clackamas mall shooting, but of course this part doesn’t get mentioned in the Guardian version.
Blaming the responsible gun-owners and the gun lobby may make the ‘liberals’ feel morally superior, but it won’t change anything. ‘Liberals’ want to “have the conversation”. Go ahead, but you won’t win the argument. Even if the ‘liberals’ are right that America without 300,000,000 privately-owned firearms would be safer than the America of today (yes, it’s plausible!), the genii ain’t going back in the bottle. Dangerous people, insane people, criminally-minded people will continue to possess or gain access to guns. You cannot change this fact, but you can choose how you respond to it, and, rationally speaking, given the circumstances, unless you can afford bodyguards like Michael Moore or the President with his motorcade of M134-mounted SUVs, your best bet is to get a CCP, buy a gun, and learn how to use it.