Thursday, December 06, 2007

Gun Control

The best part of America's gun control laws is the lie that gun manufacturers have used to convince Americans that more gun control is unneeded. You know the argument: The Second Amendment.

The back-up argument is that if guns are outlawed only outlaws will have guns. That Americans need to have guns to defend themselves.

Neither of these positions are valid, of course.

The Second Amendment states:
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

The National Rifle Association (NRA) has led a four decade campaign to distort the meaning of this simple paragraph.

Each state has a well-regulated militia that can be used to protect the security of each state. Each state maintains its own regimens of national guard, which was formed in the early-20th century to organize all the states' militias. Each state is protected and offers that protection to the nation at-large. This is the spirit and letter of the Second Amendment. The Second Amendment does not protect the sale of massive amounts of firearms to the public at-large. Nor should it.

The notion that each of us should possess a gun to protect ourselves from other with firearms is absurd.

When bad guys, insane people, and poorly-reared suburban children open fire on unsuspecting citizens, there never seems to be a single one of these gazillions of legally-protected guns in anyone's possession to protect anyone, and unsuspecting citizens die.

Yesterday, a wacko in Nebraska (yes, a red state) opened fire in a mall killing nine people, critically wounding two, and wounding three others before turning his legally-protected firearm on himself and taking his own life.

Nebraska is NRA territory. It's filled with Americans who consistently vote against their own self-interest to protect gun manufacturers, give tax breaks to those who need them least, and ship their children overseas to die for liars (whom they continually re-elect).

I am afraid that Nebraskans are too busy complaining about abortion, gay marriage, immigrants, and social welfare, to ever actually pay attention to the fact that gun manufacturers, supply-side economists, and evangelicals are not only destroying their nation but also putting them in harm's way.

One thing you can count on, however, is that Nebraskans will come out in record numbers, right after these latest victims are buried, to proclaim their support of all things NRA and all things GOP.

What's wrong with Nebraska? I mean, besides the dead bodies in the mall.

Nine dead in Nebraska mall shooting

Update 12/6/2007 3:30 P.M.

I share the following from a New York Times report:

In the flat voice of a professional accustomed to recounting grisly details, Chief Warren said that Mr. Hawkins fired about 30 shots from an AK-47-style semi-automatic weapon that the police said he stole from his stepfather. He had two magazines with 30 rounds each, the chief said, that 'had the capacity to fire multiple rounds in a short period of time.'

I can assure you that the founders of the United States of America, the drafters of the United States Constitution, and the writers of the Amendments did not intend for Mr. Hawkins' step-father to be guaranteed the right to keep an AK-47-style-automatic-weapon in his home.

Dick Mac Recommends:

A People's History of the United States
Howard Zinn

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