What’s the best cure for alcoholism? More martinis!
It sounds crazy, and it is. But it’s no crazier than the garbage being spewed by America’s gun cultists in the wake of last week’s horrific massacre in a Colorado movie theater.A young man clad in SWAT-team black, his hair dyed a weird shade of orange, walked in when the theater was packed for a midnight premiere of the new Batman movie. He was carrying formidable weaponry: a semi-automatic assault rifle, a pump-action 12-gauge shotgun and a .40-caliber semi-automatic handgun.
After tossing a smoke grenade to create panic he opened fire, first with the shotgun, then with the rifle, and finally – after the rifle’s 100-round clip apparently jammed – with the handgun.
By the time the shooter – identified by police as Jason A. Holmes – had been stopped, a dozen people lay dead and 58 others were wounded, some critically.
The responses from the gun nuts were totally predictable – and totally disgusting. One of the common ones was that if more people had been packing firearms in that theater, they would have taken Holmes out and many lives would have been saved.
So instead of one person shooting bullets around in a crowded, dark, smoke-filled theater we would have had a bunch of people shooting bullets around in a crowded, dark, smoke-filled theater. Yeah, that would’ve worked out real well.
The fact that such an argument could be seriously advanced is a marker of how far into insanity the national attitude about guns has veered. And for that we largely have to thank an outfit known as the National Rifle Association.
The NRA started out in the 19th century as a rational and responsible organization dedicated to promoting shooting sports and firearm safety. But in more recent times it has become the political and propaganda tool of the firearms industry.
That industry has a simple agenda: to sell as many guns as possible. So it became the NRA’s mission to fight tooth and nail against any regulations, no matter how sensible, that might make it harder for anybody to buy and carry guns. To carry out that mission it marshals its 4.3-million-member army of followers, who it whips into hysteria by telling them that any attempt at gun regulation means the tyrannical gummint is a-comin’ to take their guns.
Gun regulation, obviously, is not the same as gun confiscation. Governments register and regulate many things – dogs and motor vehicles are two examples that come to mind – and nobody goes into a panic that they’re about to be taken away. But the NRA’s adherents aren’t big on nuance.
As always after one of these massacres, people are hoping that we might finally have a “rational dialogue” about guns in America. It’s a forlorn hope. The NRA is too powerful, its followers are too brainwashed and the politicians are too terrified of it.
So all we can do at this point is give THE BOOT to the NRA and the Cult of the Gun that it promotes. Gentlemen, you have blood on your hands.